apologies…

so i’ve been thinking a lot this weekend about apologies… i’m pretty sure a lot of you can relate, considering nearly all of us have been wronged or have wronged someone else at least a few times in our lives thus far. first of all though, i need to say – don’t read too into this & convince yourself i’m talking about you! i’m talking about life in general & myself included on this issue. furthermore, when i talk about offenses – i mean of ALL kinds. small remarks that manage to cut you to the core w/out it even being someone’s intention to total rifts in relationships that stem from heavy-duty issues…the whole spectrum…

sometimes i still feel i am “owed” apologies & some i’ve received have seemed far less than genuine. discernment tells me so! right? 🙂 so, thinking about that got me thinking about that “owed” stuff… are we really owed any apologies? well, i sure feel like it… especially when you see the person & it’s like nothing ever happened on their end, but your left with these thorns in your side & every time you see them or think about it, it’s like that sting returns. you know what i mean? how can some people just go about their lives like any pain they caused you is just no biggie? everything gets swept under the rug…

well, then i think about offenses, which leads to thinking about forgiveness, which leads straight to thinking about Jesus. then i’m hit full-circle w/that issue of entitlement. do you think b/c i still feel i’m “owed” that apology or that the one i received should have been more genuine or earnest, that’s an indicator that i truly don’t forgive them? i say i do. most of the time i seem to think i do. but do i? what if Jesus held me to that same standard…

colossians 3:13 “make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” making allowances – that’s where i’m seriously falling short. make room for people to let you down. tolerance. acceptance. not lower standards…just a mature understanding that people are going to hurt you. i think of Jesus loving peter & judas…loving all people…knowing ahead of time the rejection, the letdowns, the betrayals… i’d love to be more like that.

ok – so here’s a gross analogy, so don’t read on if you’re grossed out by the whole birthing process…actually, if you are not female – just stop here period.

ok – so i asked the doc at my last appt if i’d have to have another episiotomy w/this baby. her response was that even if the baby didn’t require me to have one (supposedly i’m carrying a petite girl b/c we’re a couple wks under in measurements), i’d prob still get one b/c “the scarring is less forgiving.” pretty interesting statement. the scarring is less forgiving. it is tough. it’s less flexible. it’s a scar….damaged skin…a mark left forever…the replacement of “normal” tissue. after doing a little reading about scars i found these simple & common-sense comments much more meaningful… “nearly every wound results in some degree of scarring.” “it’s a natural part of the healing process.”

see the correlation? i feel God gives us reflections of our spirit man in our physical man in many cases so that we can better understand ourselves & His ways. a scar is less forgiving… chew on that one for a minute.

anyway, so that’s what i’ll be praying more about this week & doing some in depth reading of what He has to say about the way i’ve been feeling. i know w/my head what it is i need to feel, but i need some more scriptures & prayer to speak to my heart. after all, as it clearly states in proverbs 4:23 “above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” everything flows from it…thoughts, speech, actions, motives…everything. so i need true forgiveness in my heart to forget about offenses – really, truly forget them. the way God forgives & forgets mine…

instant gratification…

so i briefly caught a blurp on the today show this morning. they were talking about facebooking, blogging, tweeting…all that good stuff… the topic was moms who blog/post about their pregnancies. these women posted you tube videos of themselves finding out they were pregnant. anyway, one view of course from the moms was that they were doing it out of pride & excitement. basically, they wanted to share their good news & didn’t care how public it was. another brought up the point that they wanted their child to be able to see one day how excited they were for his/her coming arrival & existence. all good points in my opinion. but “the expert” got me thinking too…she stated that we as a society are all about instant gratification, so by posting these details of our lives, be it videos, updates, etc., we aim to receive that instantaneous “like” & congrats. it’s all about the feelings. we want others to share our good news & happy times & congratulate us, because it brings us all those happy feelings. instant gratification. what do you think? made me question my motives a bit. i’m thinking it’s a little of all the above…

btw – a happy “birthday” to my sweet Heaven Baby today. wanted to post a little something about miscarriage & some things i feel God has shown me throughout my experience & the experiences of some of my friends, but not really up for typing it all right now. soon maybe…

yeah…like he said…

this is the “Daily Blessing” i received today in my email. it pretty much says what i was trying to illustrate w/my last blog on peace. mr. stanley says it much better, so i’d like to share. hope you get something from it. i have.

Thoughtful Living

Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways. He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way. – Psalm 25:8-9

Are you living thoughtfully and intentionally—or automatically? It’s so easy to get up each morning, do our work, enjoy some relaxation or entertainment, and fall into bed each night without giving any thought to God’s involvement in our lives. But to be ignorant of how He has blessed, guided, protected, and warned us is a foolish way to live. Just consider the benefits of keeping our spiritual eyes and ears open throughout the day.

Those who are aware of the Lord’s presence during their daily activities enjoy the peace of knowing that He is always in control and working to accomplish His good purposes. Every day’s experiences with Him teach them to know and love Him more.

When we learn to see God’s footprints in our days, we will become aware of the scope of His involvement in our lives. Maybe He strengthened you for a task or opened a door of opportunity. Perhaps He guided your decisions or helped you respond in a godly way to a difficult person.

If our ears are open to the Lord’s warnings and instructions, we won’t repeat the same mistakes again and again. But those who are deaf to His voice will continue in unhealthy thought patterns, negative emotions, and foolish responses.

Each night before you go to sleep, take some time to reflect on the day’s activities. The Lord is constantly with you, guarding and guiding your way. He wants you to see Him in everything and understand life from His perspective as you rely on His wisdom and power to face any challenge.

Charles Stanley

peace…

so , i’ll let you in on a little secret…for nearly 4 months i had been a law-breaking citizen! eek! yep, for 4 whole months… i realized around january that my car inspection had expired in november! not good. so, i did what any christian lady would go & do…i got home from running errands in my illegal car & hollered at my husband! debate ensued…”where are the registration cards?! where is my insurance card?! this one isn’t current! you handle the mail! no, you didn’t give it to me!” get the picture?

well, we figured we’d just keep breaking the law until my registration was up as well, since that card was mia…& so for 3 whole months i drove around feeling like a fugitive. every single day i’d think through the scenarios of being pulled over. what do i say? i don’t want to lie! but it’s totally unacceptable to knowingly drive around for 3 additional months in an “illegal” car! shame on me! i’d pray & sweat every time i passed a cop car. please don’t pull me over, please don’t pull me over…whew! the next trip…repeat. it was AGONIZING to drive! i know some of you may think this is just dorky, but it’s true. i hated driving b/c i felt so uneasy all the time. i didn’t realize it though until this past weekend when we finally got those shiny new inspection stickers… i drove off that parking lot w/pride in those stickers! haha those little pieces of paper carried so much meaning…so much PEACE. finally, i was following the rules again & it brought me so much peace. that’s when it hit me – this is a lot like living w/out Jesus…

when we live w/out Jesus as our Lord, we’re often living our lives breaking the rules & there’s no peace in a life like that. i’m not just talking about the “major” ones – the commandments & so forth, but also the “rules” we often overlook. do i gossip? do i bend the truth? do i curse my enemies rather than bless them? do i retaliate for wrongs & offenses – even in passive agressive ways? do i really seek God’s path for my day & my choices or do i follow my own plans?

i’m reminded of this scripture in proverbs 6…”there are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.”

all of those things we may or may not do throughout our daily living & they have a direct connection to the amount of peace we experience as we go about our day. some things may seem worse than others, but they’re all wrong in God’s book, so i really need to try harder to live righteously, pleasing Him w/my life in every thought, word & deed.

anyway – random thoughts as usual, but that’s me. Jesus, please let me hear your voice, so that i may follow your ways. let your thoughts be my thoughts & your ways be my ways, so that i may truly live experiencing your peace. i ask these things in your name, amen.

here is a scripture regarding peace i thought i’d share…
John 14:7 “peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

this one doesn’t really relate to my story, but it’s beautiful, powerful & life-changing…
Isaiah 53:5 “but he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” thank you, Jesus.

kitchen randomness

so i guess i’m in a blogging kind of mood today. ava needs to get up from her nap & hubby’s in the garage & dinner has 20 mins left in the oven, so maybe i’m just feeling talkative, lonely & bored! 🙂

you know how people say the things that drive you nuts about the person you love are usually the same things you love about them? i know that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense now that i’ve typed it probably, but some of you may know what i’m talking about. well, i think the same goes for life & in tonight’s case – preparing dinner. sometimes i look at the pantry & fridge & just get so frustrated i could throw a can of petite diced tomatoes at the wall – we always seem to have a can of those around for some reason… coming up with dinners either frustrates me to no end, or, like in tonight’s case, brings me so much pleasure. i guess it depends on how much energy i have or how creative i feel like being. like tonight…my sister-in-law gave me this great recipe for chicken pot pie a while ago, but i didn’t have all the ingredients. some nights that would bug me, but tonight, after some major improvisions (like veg broth in lieu of chicken, a bag of random mixed veggies, a ton of potatoes & some interesting combo of spices like sage & paprika to name a few) i must say i’m pretty pleased. oh – also i had 2 pie shells, so i just let them thaw & flipped the one over the other like a lid. worked out perfectly. hopefully the fam enjoys it too. ava gets the non-dairy version of course…

so here it is – the final product…ever wanna talk food, i’m always interested!

need advice from you creative beings…

ok, so several days ago i posted the nursery pics & projects. so excited btw that one i didn’t even know we’d finish is almost complete! eric slaved all weekend to refinish an old cabinet from my mom for me. i can’t use spray paint & laquer in this condition. pics coming soon… but, anyway, i’m really struggling w/ what to do with the angels. i’ve called ava “my angel” since before she was born, but i still do want to incorporate the plaques into isla’s room. so, here is my dilemma…ava’s room is mostly browns; isla’s is mostly grays & whites. what can i do so one can dwell in each of the girls’ room & yet still preserve that classic look that will last them a lifetime? like, i’m not looking to paint them pink or something. i am stumped. any ideas???

criteria:
*must have the same, classic finish

12 weeks left & counting…

so…something occurred to me while watching “jake & the neverland pirates” w/ava the other morning…i’ve officially entered the realm of mr. smee in terms of attire these days. proof? hubby asks, “don’t you own any shirts that cover the bottom of your belly?” ha! what’s wrong w/wearing clothes that don’t fit to bed?! who out there spends money on maternity pj’s anyway? i cringe at buying the necessities. but i guess that was my sign i need to start alternating nightgowns & scrap the tees & capris til after baby…

the swollen feet hanging over the shoes kind of looks familiar too…yikes! thank goodness i think i can stop there! oh wait…just noticed the glasses barely hanging onto that schnoz… ok, now i’m starting to feel pretty plump & frumpy!

nursery in the works…

oh isla, the work you have in store for me! 🙂 but you’re worth it. here are a few “before” shots of some upcoming projects i have planned for her room. i hope “nesting” kicks in soon, b/c right now i’m dragging my swollen feet…

here is the inspiration fabric i stumbled upon while looking at rugs. probably will end up as a crib skirt, pillow case, & maybe a few other things depending on how much is left over…

some items in need of tlc, but full of meaning…
angels crafted by my mother’s grandfather that i will refinish

& a painting started by my father’s grandmother before she passed – she & ava share a birthday, so now each of the girls will have something special to share w/her

“pray” & “love” art…two of the most important verbs you can ever practice…

glider in desperate need of a slipcover & paint job…

this mama better get a move on…only about 12 weeks left…& that’s only if she makes me wait the whole 40 weeks!

the “s” returns…

Well, ila is isla again. i like the silent “s.” it’s classy. it flows. the “i” is able to stand, prominently, followed by the rest of the letters that flow like a calm ocean wave…the “s” into the “l” and “a.” perfect. after we changed it to omit the “s,” and i typed it, it hit me that the “i” next to the “l” resembled two puny sticks just hanging out, waiting to be blown over (& the word llama…hmmm). yes, i’m disappointed that hungarians don’t use the silent “s,” because that would be ideal! however, my maiden surname is scottish, so scottish spelling w/hungarian meaning & purpose still fits the bill for me. anyway…i saw “isla” in a magazine article today, & it just looked right, so, i simply asked my hubby today if we could keep the “s,” and he said sure! i love compromise. so her name will no longer match her sister’s in number of letters, but that’s ok…i am not changing this blog address again! …even if we call her sue! haha

name change…spelling only this time!

so…in case you didn’t notice…the title of the blog & the link have changed a bit, b/c our coming daughter’s name will be spelled differently now. over breakfast this morning, hubby & i were talking about the beautiful name, “eye-la,” that will grace our second daughter…

just some history…i had liked the name “eve” for her, but it wasn’t of favorite of his, so back in mid-february, while reading the baby name book in frustration (i wanted a name like yesterday for her), i was reading through the “i” names…we read through a letter at a time & when i came across “isla,” i got the response, “i dig it.” music to this mom’s ears from her picky husband! i’m just as picky & stubborn too, so the fact that i liked it sparked some interest. the next morning, i decided to research the name. bogus or negative meanings equal toss it & start over again. well…to my delight, i spotted the hungarian variant w/the spelling “ila” on one of the websites i was looking at & clicked on it. the hungarian meaning for the name is “bright/shining one,” & it is a variant of the name “helen.” bonus! why? well…my hubby’s family is of hungarian decent (our last name is very hungarian), so to find a hungarian girl name that we liked other than “imola” (not a lot of those around i’m sure) was awesome. secondly, both of his grandmothers, who have passed, were named helen. he actually wanted our 1st daughter to bear the name, but i was afraid it was too outdated for her generation & he didn’t like “helene.” it’ll have a comeback someday i’m sure – they all do. but anyway, he was especially close to his “nana,” so to find a name that…1-is hungarian, 2-has a positive meaning, 3-we both really like, & 4-is a variation of a name so close to his heart…we couldn’t pass it up. this was it. “isla rae.”

so what about the spelling after that long story? well, mom likes the scottish spelling w/the silent “s,” but dad wants to stay true to the hungarian spelling & fears she will be called “iz-la” one too many times. i can give up the “s” for those reasons…i’ll survive. 🙂 hopefully, she likes it. so that’s it. that’s the story.

neat similarity to ava’s name though…they will both have short, sweet, 6 letter names to pair with our wonderfully unique last name…ava lee & ila rae…my little angels.