Sunday, March 29, 2009

Not Me! Monday - Stellan Style

The title says it all.

This carnival wouldn't be here if it wasn't for Stellan's wonderful Mama, MckMama, so instead of the usual, silly everyday stories about my life, this week you will hear about the things that I definitely did NOT do regarding this beautiful baby boy and his mama.

I was not in tears several times with a heavy heart, this week during the down times of this roller coaster ride over a little boy and a mama that I don't actually "know" in the face to face sense. I have not fallen in love with this little boy, as well. And I most definitely do not consider her a friend now just because we had started to email on a semi-regular basis. And I definitely have not recently compared this to the days of old when pen-pals was a common way to "meet" and be "friends" with people that we hadn't actually seen in real life. Definitely not me!

I will not admit to having my computer up and ready to hit refresh any time I would walk in the room or by it several dozen times a day to see if there was any updates on Stellan, wishing every time that I would see the words, "Stellan is completely and miraculously healed...again!". Not me.

And whenever I needed to leave my home, I absolutely did not set twitter to send me a text every time MckMama twittered an update, and then proceed to get irritated with twitter for sometimes sending them to me and sometimes not! Nope. Not me.

And I absolutely did not lay face down on my carpet petitioning our God to reach down and touch Stellan's struggling little heart. A posture that I'm sad and ashamed to say I had not taken in awhile.

And on Wednesday when we first heard about Stellan's V-Tach, I did not grab all 3 of my children and kneel down with them in the living room to pray right then and there for Stellan, after calling my hubby at work to do the same, and then feel the tears pour down my face while praying for him and listening to my children pray. And it did not break my heart even more when I looked up to find my daughter's wet eyes and my buddy's face with streams of tears flowing down. This family and little boy have definitely not touched my heart this much. Absolutely not.

And Stellan is not constantly on my heart and mind. And I am definitely not praying without ceasing for him as I go about my day. And I have not taken several pictures for Stellan's Name Gallery. And I did not request an address from MckMama's friend, Mama Bear, so that I could put together a little package for her. And I have not wished that I could visit the Frozen Tundra so that I could be of some other help to her. And I did not post about Stellan several times this week. And I do not get a little nervous when we haven't heard anything in awhile. But I also did not write MckMama telling her that it's OK if she doesn't want to write or twitter or whatever, because we all would UNDERSTAND.

And lastly, but definitely not least, I have not spent a little more time holding my children, gazing at them while they're sleeping, telling them I love them, thanking God for the blessing they bring to my life, and hurting for all those who are doing all those things with their children while sitting in a hospital room.

One more thing...

I will NOT, and by not, this time I truly mean NOT, stop lifting sweet 5 month old Stellan, MckMama, and the rest of this family up to our Father in heaven. I will not stop asking for complete healing. I will not stop praying scripture over them. I will not expect anything less than for God to continue to be glorified in this. I will not stop loving these fellow followers of Christ.....

And if you too, would like to join in this very special edition of Not Me! Monday - Stellan Style please visit The Cline Family blog, who's hosting this, and add your Mr. Linky as well. I know MckMama will appreciate the love being poured out over her and Stellan and the rest of their family...

Friday, March 27, 2009

Winks from God

I've had a few mushy moments these past several days.

You know the ones?

Warm and fuzzy inside. Awwww moments. How sweet... How cute...

However it plays out in your head or heart...sometimes those "little" feelings or moments are what get you through a particular day, aren't they?

Little gifts from God.

I've shared a few of mine with you...

Now, won't you do the same?

What things make you all mushy, warm, or awwwww inside, and have you thanking God for a little respite in an otherwise overwhelming, stressful, tiring, dreary, or sad day....?

How did He wink at you today?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Stellan's Name Gallery

As you all know by now, one of my favorite blogs is My Charming Kids, and in a way I feel like I "know" MckMama:)

And you, of course, have seen my requests for you all to join me in prayer for baby Stellan.

He still needs our prayers, friends.

To read up on his story (Yes, he has a story!), click here. Stellan is a miracle baby! MckMama and her husband, Prince Charming, were told when he was in the womb that he would surely die, but our great God had different plans for this precious boy! While in the womb he struggled with numerous things heart-related, including what he is now battling, but when he was born (which was a miracle in and of itself) he was completely healed! Unbelievable, right? Not if you believe who our God says He is, not if you believe he still performs miracles, or that he is all-powerful, all-knowing, all-present! This family's journey of faith was strengthened through that trial and they came through it more mature, having drawn closer to God. And now they are in the midst of another such trial, still fully trusting that our God has not changed, that He still has a plan for baby Stellan, and that Stellan is STILL, in fact, a miracle! But also praying for healing for their baby boy. God wants us to pray for one another, to share each others burdens, pray for our hearts desire, for his will, and trust Him that he will work all things together for HIS good. So, my fellow bloggers, I urge you to get on your knees. To ask for healing, for peace, for wisdom, for comfort as we wait and see what the Lord will do. Let's storm heavens gates for this beautiful little boy who already has touched so many lives and who God has already used, along with his parents, to show God's love and to bring our Father glory.

Back before Stellan was born completely healthy, a name gallery was begun. MckMama loves photos and she loves names, so what better way for people to show they cared and were praying then to give her photos of Stellan's name? And this gallery has been reborn! If you would like to show this family that you are praying you can email pictures of Stellan's name to or visit Knowing Norrah's to add the link of your post that shows off his name!

A praise song that I know keeps coming to mind everytime I think about Stellan and it seems so fitting...

I have a Maker
He formed my heart
Before even time began
My life was in his hands

He knows my name
He knows my every thought
He sees each tear that falls
and He hears me when I call


For the most updated information on how Stellan is doing please visit My Charming Kids or simply click on the button "Praying for Stellan" on my sidebar.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Scattered Brain Post

I've thought about posting several times today, but for some reason can't seem to get my thoughts together. I've had a lot on my mind the past couple of days. And have just not been myself, or felt overly witty or inspired, as far as the bloggity world goes.

So today you'll get scatteredness (is that even a word?:)) from me...


Some might think I'm weird or strange for continuing to post about Stellan and MckMama, but are we not the body of Christ? Which isn't just the church building you walk into every week, but ALL believers. And I count it an honor to share this burden, to get on my knees and pray for healing, for peace, for comfort, for His glory to be shown...

Stellan is still in SVT (supraventricular tachycardia), a high heart rate, that they are trying to flip down into normal range. They have tried many various medications without sustained success so far and this precious 5 month old baby is manic, restless, panicky, and unable to sleep much.

If you want to read in more detail or grab the button on my sidebar for yourself, visit MckMama's blog. I especially encourage you to read this post of hers, as well as Angie's from Bring the Rain. I am constantly challenged about my own faith when I realize that my daily struggles and trials are so trivial in comparison.


Good to the last drop, apparently.

I've made homemade guacamole twice in the last week, per hubby's request.

So, I guess I'll pass on the secret ingredient recipe...

2 avocados (that's all I had, but, of course, you could use more) - mashed w/ a fork.
Nature's Sweet Cocktail Tomatoes - cored, seeds squeezed out, and chopped up fine. (No specific amounts here, just eyeballed it)
Finely Chopped Onion - just enough to give the flava
Minced Garlic - aprox. 2 cloves (again, though, as much as you want to be breathing on each other later)
1/2 lemon - squeeze the juice in (but not the seeds. Almost made that mistake.)
Chopped green onion (because, really it's the only raw onion I really like) - to taste.
Salt - to taste, of course:), yeah, I guess no real secret ingredient. Pretty basic stuff. I guess it's true what they say...less is more. And my hubs would like some more.

....Monster will just lick it off the plate.


Anyone who knows the hubs well, knows he has a complete and udder love and adoration unexplained, traumatic fear of clowns.

Which is why this was so incredibly I mean ironic?

The fact that Buddy meant to say "Clones", held no comfort for Daddy.

The damage was done...

Be brave Daddy. Be brave.


One of my goals for myself for this week was "The Cleaning of the Dining Table". A high and lofty goal, I know. But those of you with children (or husbands, or grandchildren) will understand the manner in which these things progress if not attended to in timely fashion. Hence the glued on streak of milk that I finally scrubbed off the leg of this table after having discovered it about 6 months ago when we moved back to the valley.

Now that I've completely humiliated myself by admitting to that, I give you the milk and finger print free table.

Which will approximately last for about...oops. You missed it. It's already gone.


And proof that there was indeed "Indoor Fort Day" this Spring Break.

I think they would leave them up all year and sleep in them, if I let them.

But eventually Mama had to be Joshua.

And the walls came tumblin' down.

I'm such a mean Mama.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Pray for Stellan!!!

You probably are wondering where my typical Not Me! Monday post is today, but instead of posting that, I ask you to pray. Stellan, miracle baby of MckMama the creator of that carnival, was taken to the ER because he had a cold and was having trouble breathing, but since last night it has spiraled into an accelerated heart rate and enlarging of his heart (what he had while in the womb) and they can't seem to get it under control. Please pray right now for him, MckMama and the rest of this family. Visit her blog for more details and better updates.

Be near and bring healing, Lord Jesus.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Round 1

Mama vs. Bored-itis, and it's survival of the fittest. Who will be the victor?

(I know I'm cheesy. That's just who I am sometimes.)

If I was a bettin' woman, I'd place my money, of course! Mama will prevail.

I have to admit I might not be the fittest physically. Cause I'm pretty sure that Jillian's 30 Day Shred is not about refraining from exercises for 30 days.

But I'm hoping that I'm the fittest mentally. I was a little nervous when I started off Thursday and Friday (the beginning of Spring Break) a little sluggish but I have renewed motivation and my strategy for next week.

I give you...Round 1 of this match.

Because we all need to have some loungin' time every once in awhile. And how much do I love, that he still loves his baby blanket that used to be MY baby blanket.

Is it bad when your kids refer to breakfast as cake? Good thing this doesn't happen on a regular basis. It was free! I couldn't turn down free, right?!

Ahhh. The simple joys in life. Like being clean, for instance. Actually, one of the things I decided to do on Friday was daytime baths. Also referred to as Daytime Soaps because they're long, drawn out, lazy, something gets accomplished on the sly...well you get my drift.

They loved this idea. And, actually, I will probably do this on a regular basis, especially on evenings when we have things going on, up until bedtime. And I will use it to my advantage, during that infamous hourbeforedaddygetshomewhenmamastryingtomakedinner-everoneshungryandwhiningmamasbloodpressureisrising... Am I the only one that gets anxiety just thinking about it?

I realize most of you are probably thinking, "Oh, how cute! He's playing the funnel like a horn.", but how could you not be thinking, "Those are the most adorable, scrumptious, kissable baby cheeks I've ever laid eyes on!". Seriously. How could you not.

Some might call it the "Ace Ventura", some "The Whos of Whoville" 'do, but his daddy lovingly refers to him as "Teen Wolf". So...apparently one more thing on this next week's agenda is a grooming for our little Monster.

I love that he's confident in his lathered locks, though.

And I'm pretty sure these wrinkled piggies can attest to the fact that a marvelous time was had. (AND that I let them stay in as long as they wanted.) And not just by these 5, but the other 25 that belong in this pen, as well. Alas, no pics of the rest, for it has become inappropriate to take pictures of Buddy bathing now. And Babes is on that line. Sigh. Pardon me, while a go wipe my tears.

And this is what happens when you leave your camera laying around for little Monster to destroy use.

So lets recap the crazy, exciting fun that's been happening around here.

Mama has coffee.
Cake for breakfast.
Too much T.V.
Mama has coffee.
Play at church while Mama and Daddy practice for Easter.
Visit from Papa and Mimi.
Mama has coffee.
Daytime soap. Ahem, baths.
Mama has coffee.
Dessert w/ some new friends and some mutual friends.
Mama has more coffee.
Mama has more coffee.
Mama makes steel cut oats in the crock pot for the first time and they are good.
Lincoln has 3 bowls.
Mama has more coffee.
Everyone goes with Mama to the grocery store.
Throw in a couple of minor injuries and I think that about covers it so far.

I really didn't have that many cups of coffee. That's just how many times I heated up the same cup of coffee after taking one drink before it got cold again. So glad that I really like looking at my coffee mug.

Now, don't you want to come have Spring Break at our house?!

Before you start feeling too sorry for my kids, this is what's planned for next week!
~A trip to the Children's Museum.
~A ride on the carousel.
~The oldens get to go the public library with me, while the youngen plays with Mimi.
~A trip to Costco. Who doesn't love that?
~Playdough. You heard me right. I'm breaking out the Playdough. I told you, big guns.
~Make some yummy healthy treats together. We're talkin' homemade granola bars that I've wanted to make for awhile. Any good recipes out there?
~Inside fort day. Complete with flashlights, books to read, and giggles galore.
~A dinner where they pick which serving utensil they want to eat with. ie wooden spoons, pasta spoon, spatula, tongs, etc.
~And then spending 2 days and 1 overnight at Papa and Mimi's house which they will love! and who am I kidding, I'll be ready for a little Spring Break myself by then.

So, while it was a shaky 1st Round, I definitely think that come Round 2, Mama's gonna knock you out!!!

(I feel a song comin' on.)

And good thing I love cheese.

Cause this post was full of it.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Finer Substitute

I spent a bit of time writing a post earlier today, but wasn't having a peace about hitting that publish button. It wasn't bad. It was actually quite a humorous story. But after consulting with my hubby and a friend, decided that it would not be appropriate for all ears. If this was an "all women's" blogging world, it would have been fine, order to show respect to God, to my hubby, my fellow bloggers and any husbands of theirs that might read this blog it will remain unspoken...until, of course, women's retreat, girl's night out, a phone call with a friend, etc, etc. ;)

So, because it's late, I'm tired, and I'm still coming up with "the activity" for my kids tomorrow, I give you a much finer thing than I could have worked up in my head.

The cutest little Monster Mash ever, having the With a squirt bottle.

With a squirt squirt here,and a squirt squirt there,
here a squirt,

there a squirt,
everywhere a cute little squirt...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

You give me (spring) fever.

There's no doubt. Spring is on it's way, in the forms of Spring Break (beginning at the 3 o'clock bell today) and new growth. And the proof is in the pudding. Mmmmm, pudding!

Around these here parts there is some of this happening...

And this...

And there is bound to be a little of this goin' on soon.

All made possible by one of those things which I love most. Yup, you guessed it! SUN!

To hopefully stay one step ahead of the inevitable grumbles and whining questions and statements that come from every young child on Spring Break (at least those that are P.O.H. (Prisoners of Home))...

Mom, I'm bored.

Mom, what is there to do?

Mom, there's nothing fun to do!

Mom, can I swing from the ceiling fans, jump of the roof, destroy the fragile flowers peeking there heads through, eat dirt, or fly from every piece of furniture? (ok, they won't ask this, but if not prepared, this might commence.)

...I've decided to come up with something every day of spring break, starting this evening, that is an activity that they've never done, have rarely done, or is just a crowd pleaser no matter how many times it's done. In hopes that I will be dubbed, "Oh lovely Mama, our hero." This might be wishful thinking. But, none the less, will squelch said boredom and lack of fun. And I don't think the old standbys are going to work this time around. Mama's got to pull out the big guns (shhh. Don't tell Obama;)), but, as you will see, will still not require mucho mulla. Just mucho brain power. Ok, now I'm a little scared.

Tonight I'm going with the trusted, tried, and true "Family Movie Night", where we get our free Redbox movie rental, rearrange living room furniture to fit the mounds of blankets, sleeping bags, pillows, and stuffed friends, put out the bowls of popcorn and candy, and let them stay up way past their bedtimes. And then I pray that they uncharacteristically sleep in come morning.

I'll keep you posted throughout our week and a half long "adventures" and if you wouldn't mind sharing what you've been doing Spring break, already done, or will be doing to scare away the Boredom Monster, I'm sure we all would appreciate the help and support!

Oh and I have a few goals for myself, as well.
Coming soon...

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I'd like to thank the Academy MckMama...


...for my 30 seconds of fame.

So about the phenomenon that IS MckMama... I'm not kidding when I say, that she has reached celebrity status and just for a day, I would like to think that I felt a fraction of what she feels on a daily basis. It was crazy! Granted, people were reading my blog because of MckMama, which I'm totally OK with, and they read hers because, well, she's super cool, talented, funny, takes great pictures, all while being very informative, encouraging, sharing her faith, and has an amazing story of God working a Miracle, also know as Stellan, or as we like to call him, MckMuffin. My Charming Kids is a daily read for me and I've been participating in Not Me! Mondays for awhile, as my regular, faithful readers know. But who would have thought that by simply linking up to her post FIRST yesterday, this would have happened...

No, your eyes do not deceive you. I had over 1,100 people visit my blog in a 24 hour period. (insert funny comparison to Jack Bauer or "24" here, if I actually watched the show...) Notice the count from the day before - 14. I don't know, what do you think? Not much different, right? Hello?! My total visits ever, almost doubled! And that, my friends, is the phenomenon also known as MckMama. Not Cathy. That certainly wouldn't have happened otherwise... (**Just to clarify, I didn't say that as a poor-me "I would never have that many" pity party:) I was just in awe over the drastic jump in visitors, which happened to come via MckMama's blog!) Which explains why today I'm back down to 60 visits so far for the day. But my time in the spotlight was fun AND because I was #1, I won a super cool photo book kit!

Truth be told, I was very excited but a little nervous too. What if these bloggers come back to read me again on an ordinary day and realize that I have no business trying to blog? What if the platform of Not Me! Monday is the only legs I have to stand on?

Well, then, so be it. My purpose for starting my little, tucked-away blog was not for the fame or fortune. Although a little fortune would be nice. It was my way of preserving memories and moments from our lives. A cyber-scrapbook, if you will. (Since, apparently, that big box of scraping supplies that I've been meaning to get out and that contains honeymoon themed things (yeah, we're talkin' 10 years) will simply, forever remain just that - a big box of scraping materials and possibly a future garage sale item, when I've realized I've been in denial all these years.) It was my way to share with family and friends what fills our days, what keeps us going, what we're learning, how we're growing, Who we're following, a way for ME to remember all those things and all the other stuff in between. And that's what it still is. And I've also considered it an extra bonus to learn from all of you fellow bloggers, to be encouraged, to be encouraging, and to meet some new "friends" (hopefully IRL someday too) along the way.

So, while my claim to fame is gone, most likely never to return, I'm content. Content to quietly go about my life. Content with my 10-20 faithful readers, because you're th' beeeest (said with Nacho Libre inflection) and I love you. Content and excited to welcome any new readers/friends that may come along. And content to just be me. (Well, a work in progress really. It is always changing, hopefully, to be molded into more of what God wants me to be.)

Now on to my real acceptance speech...

Yeah! I'm so glad I won!!! whoo hoo!

OK, not funny.
And, I know, self praise stinks.
Just pretend I didn't say that.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Not Me! Monday

What time is it?! It's Not Me! Monday time! What time is it?! It's Not Me! Monday!

Did I sufficiently pump you up enough to join MckMama and the rest of us by being brutally honest about this past week and, of course, living to tell about it? Do you have Not Me! Monday spirit? Well, I do! So here it goes...

I most definitely have not resorted to grabbing camera and snapping pictures before I discipline floss-unraveling Monsters

or tantrum throwing toddlers

Not Me! What would ever make you think that I would do something like that?

When we took our little excursion to OMSI this past week, we absolutely did not find a dead, cooked? whole chicken laying in the middle of the sidewalk in downtown Portland. That would just be too weird. But if that had happened I later would not have found myself wishing that I had taken a picture of the disgusting mass to prove that I was not making up that crazy story. Nope. Not me!

And I would absolutely never write about it in back to back posts.

And while at OMSI, after having been OK with the fact that the Boa snake was out of it's cage and my children were touching it, did not quickly vacate the premises when they decided to take a Giant Hissing Cockroach from it's abode. Because I'm still unsure what the purpose of those would be and I have no desire to find out. Definitely not me.

And lastly, you would not have found me beaming when my hubby who never reads my blog read my post about "the chicken" and was cracking up. It would not be most important to me that my spouse find my blog most interesting and creative, and I would not hope that he will continue to read it on a regular basis. Nope. Not Me!

Think that's about it for this week. Not much can top the chicken.

So....TAG! You're it! Don't spoil the fun!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Almost Wordless Weekend - Alternately titled "Chicken ON the Sidewalk"

Before I move onto the (almost) wordless part, I'll use a few to tell you about our impromptu excursion to OMSI. Sound fun? It was!

We met up with the hub's sister and our nieces for some play time and then dinner at Deschutes Brewery in downtown Portland (where, of course, I was very original and got their DELICIOUS Sweet and Spicy Mac and Cheese w/ a salad topped with their equally yummy balsamic vinaigrette!). Which leads me into the story of the day...

After the museum fun, we headed across the river and were deciding where to park for said restaurant, and considering it was raining, busy, and we didn't feel like duking it out for a parallel parking spot on the street that you had to pay for anyway, we decided to pay the $5 to park in the very convenient, close, and dry garage across the street.

Fine idea, right? Wrong.

We waited on a semi-vertical incline to get into the parking garage so long that the hubs heaved his door open and hiked up the hill to see why no cars were moving. And then we saw Mr. Parking Garage Guy emerge from his little office closet like he had all the time in the world.

He may have been sleeping. Because as a parking attendant, that's what you should totally do on a busy city's Saturday evening.

He proceeds to tell us we can go ahead and park upstairs while he runs our card. And we can come back down and get it. Run our card or run with our card?

Is he for real? "Hey, Mr. Garage Guy, besides my debit card, why don't I go ahead and give you my bank account number, mother's maiden name, password, and social security number? Would that help?"

We park near an elevator, but notice there's some construction going on around it but no signs stating whether it was operational. And since I, nor my hubby, make it a practice to put ourselves and our entire family into a metal box that is operationally questionable, I decide to ask holler at Mr. Garage Guy to see if we can use it.

His response: I'm not sure.

You're not sure?!

Think we'll pass.

He says we can just walk down the way we drove up. We decide to go with the stairs we found over in the corner that he apparently didn't know were there.

Once we made our way down we saw a partially cooked (possibly?) whole chicken sitting in the middle of the sidewalk. Does that top your list of things that you thought you would never hear on my blog? Yeah, me too. Can't believe I didn't get a picture of it for my blog. Oh, yeah, maybe it was the little bit of vomit that came up in my mouth that distracted me from taking it.

Guess that chicken's never gonna cross the road again.

And I'm not joking. It was still sitting there pretty as you please, right where it was when we walked by after dinner. Can't imagine why someone didn't move it.....

Now picture even more cars coming in as we're trying to leave, while cars have to dance around one another in this safety violating, joke of a garage. Forget the fact that the one lane entrance was also the exit. Sure glad there wasn't a fire that we needed to get away from and sure glad the people coming up the semi-vertical incline as we were going down didn't reach in and steal our Psalty's CD.

Turns out the circling and circling of the block to get that street parking may have been a more attractive alternative then we first originally thought. Oh well. Thankfully it was only a half hour at of our entire day of fun, family, fellowship, and food!

I know it's in backwards order, but here's the almost Wordless Weekend as promised.:)
Here's our Doogie Howser of animals...:)
1) ball goes in, 2)air pushes ball up and out, 3)and it falls on your head...ooohhhh!!!
The Sand "Room"
A good tired.