Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Journal Entry #18

Out My Window: Ah, fall. Only 90 today. Monsoon season is over and the weather is drier and cooler. Skies are clear and cloudless. The a/c has been off for 3 whole days.

Reading: Just finished Something Other Than God by Jennifer Fulwiler of Conversion Diary. I read her blog now & then and find it funny. Enjoyed the book.

My apocrypha reading has bogged down in Sirach. I like to read narratives but I struggle with proverbs. They just don't capture my attention. Slowly plugging along.

Church Search: I think we have settled on a church - a small, liturgical LCMS congregation. It still feels awkward and we are still "the new family," but it gets a little easier each week. But, I like, like, LIKE liturgy and sadly liturgy is rare and getting harder and harder to find in Lutheran churches. I'm glad my kids are being exposed to it, because it will probably disappear completely in their lifetime.

Prayers: For my FIL Jim, starting chemo this week. For my children who are struggling with the new schools, new friends, new jobs, new church, new everything. For my DH who is having nagging health issues. Thanksgiving for the blessings of a home and food, family and friends, and a church that proclaims the Gospel and administers the sacraments.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Journal Entry #17

Out My Window: Clouds & sun. Serious heat on the way this week - 110s!

State of the State: Today is Charlie's 21st birthday. A friend from MN flew down to celebrate with him. Kids are still moping around the house, but luckily it is time to get ready to go back to school. Supplies to get, new clothes to buy. Linus has freshman registration next week. It'll be good for all of us for school to start - including me.

Kirche: We haven't settled on a new home church yet. We have been visiting 3: 1. A large LCMS. 2. A large WELS. 3. A very small LCMS.  There are advantages/disadvantages to each.

Large LCMS
Pros: 4 services to choose from, 2 traditional; Many service & fellowship opportunities; Personable pastor; Pews super comfortable; Nice welcome basket (coffee mugs!)
Cons: The altar looks like a stage (drum kit, mics, projection screens); Do not kneel for communion during some services;
In-between: Linus & Sally were the only kids at the traditional Sunday service; Protestant-like sermon series - not preaching on the Gospel.

Large WELS
Pros: 4 services, 2 traditional; Close to our home; Friendliest greeting of those we visited; Pretty church;
Cons: It would be a denominational change; Communion twice monthly
In-between: Linus & Sally two of only three kids at traditional service; Different liturgy;

Small LCMS
Pros: Liturgical; Pretty church;
Cons: One service; Farthest from home
In-between: Not just our kids in worship; Uses 1-year lectionary

Monday, June 23, 2014

Journal Entry #16

Out My Window: Sunny & hot. Such predictable weather here in AZ. This is Monsoon Season, the time of year we are suppose to get some rain. Nothing so far.

Desert Life: I'm learning bit by bit about living in this arid climate. I was worried about dehydration because I'm not a fan of drinking water, but I've learned I like water much more with some cucumber slices in it. I'm staying hydrated fairly well, but my little daughter, Sally, seems to get a little dehydrated most days and needs reminders to drink some water.

Bible Study: Finished Wisdom and started Sirach, another book of proverbs. Some good verses:
  • For fear is nothing else but unfaithfulness to thinking helpful things. (Wisdom 17:11)
  • The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and was created with the faithful in the womb, and walks with elect women, and is known by the just and the faithful. (Sirach 1:16)
Moving: It's been hard on the kids. They are unhappy here. Lucy, our oldest, started a new job today. She is a social worker and got a CPS position. Charlie thinks he is going to move in with a friend from high school who lives in Tempe (we'll see). Linus has been sleeping or playing video games. Sally watches TV. School will start for Linus and Sally on August 7. Hate to wish away summer but I am tired of watching them mope around.

In the Kitchen: It is Mexican Monday and we are having chicken tacos, rice and salad.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Journal Entry #15

Outside My Window: Another hot & sunny day in the Sonoran Desert! :) We arrived in Tucson on April 30th. What a trip! We crossed Wisconsin, Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and southern Arizona. It took 5 days and I hope I never have to drive it again. I do not have what it takes to be a long-haul trucker.

I am enjoying the desert so far. The mountains are beautiful and the landscape is interesting. We have flowers and grass and lots of birds and lizards. It is very alive and vibrant.

Weighty Matters: I am down 4.4 pounds! Stress is less, weather is great, activity is up, eating better and feeling better. The best I have felt in months.

Reading: Things got crazy and my e-book expired before I read very much of it. I'll try to get it again later. Not reading anything currently. Still have boxes to unpack, not quite settled yet.

Scripture: I have been reading Wisdom (or Wisdom of Solomon) from time to time. I'm finding it is much like Proverbs. Some verses I've highlighted:

Those who trust in Him, will understand the truth, and those who are faithful in love will rest in Him, because grace and peace is for His elect. (3:9)

For the Lord will not exempt anyone's character, nor will He stand in awe of anyone's greatness, because He Himself made the little and the great, and He is equally concerned for everyone. (6:8)

For instead of a fountain, even everlasting in flow, you gave human blood to the unjust, and while they would be crushed into disgrace because of the murdering of infants, you unexpectedly gave your own abundant water, (11:7-8)

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Journal Entry #14

Happy Easter!

Packing like crazy. Moving day is this Saturday. Feeling whole range of emotions, but mostly overwhelmed. So much to do, so little time.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Journal Entry #13

Out My Window: The calm before the storm. Most of our snow is gone except the piles along the road and the biggest drifts, but we are under a winter storm warning once again. Yesterday it was 6 to 12 inches possible. Today they upped it to 8 to 14. Spring is a 3 steps forward, 2 steps back dance in Minnesota.

Moving On: Progress, finally! Our house still isn't sold but Mr. Bee with the help of a real estate agent who really, really made an effort, has found an Arizona home for us. Not just a rental, but a lease to own house. Woo hoo! We won't have to move again right away. It has 5 bedrooms, a 3 car garage, it is in a quiet neighborhood and close to good schools. It does need some TLC, but that is okay, I like the layout and think we can make work. Packing has started and we can move in as early as May 1st. Lucy and Charlie have already given their 2-weeks notices at their jobs. Time for me to do the same.

Reading: Finished O, Pioneers! An excellent book. Interesting how different the view of adultery was in the early 1900s. Today we would never think that Emil and Maria got what they deserved. Now I'm reading To Heaven and Back by Dr. Mary Neal. My first e-book check out from the library. I've wanted to read this for quite some time after seeing Dr. Neal on a talk show.

Apocrypha: Finished Greek Esther. I recall reading a blog post once praising Esther as a model for submissive wives. You would NOT think that if you read Greek Esther. Onward to Wisdom - a long, long book of proverbs.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Journal Entry #12

Weighty Matters: I've cut back a bit and have kinda watched my eating but the scale hasn't budged. When I was younger that would have been enough to shed a few pounds. Not so anymore. I started exercising a little - some stretching and strength exercises. Oh was I sore earlier this week! Feeling better now so I should probably up the intensity.

Moving Along: Still at a stand still. All we need is a place to rent. Sounds so easy, but turns out it is not.

Lent: I like the Lutheran Hour Ministries devotion this year. Seems to be just what I need to hear. Putting my measly problems in perspective.

On My Needles: I need to finish my second sock! It is starting to get warm out and if I am to get any use from them this year I need to get it done.

Book: Still reading O Pioneers! Almost done. I went on pioneer story binge a few years ago and I should have read this then, I'm not as into it now. But it is still a good read. Not sure what I'm going to read next. Maybe some non-fiction.

Out My Window: Melting snow. Saw a flock of geese and a bald eagle this week. There must be some open water nearby. Maybe the Mississippi has broke up a bit. Colder air this weekend and snow expected next week. Not done with winter yet.

In the Kitchen: Dinner tonight was stuffed shells, garlic bread and salad. Dee-Lish! No wonder I'm not losing weight. ;-)

Prayers: For my kids, for my husband who is traveling internationally, for my in-laws health problems. Praying for the families of those aboard that missing plane - how scary! Praying for the protection of the unborn. Praying for our church. Thanksgiving for milder weather, a home and food, and a Savior who rescued me even though I don't deserve it. Praying for those who are homeless and hungry and those who haven't heard the Gospel. Amen.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Journal Entry #11

Moving On: Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. House is still for sale. Still haven't found a suitable rental in AZ.  As soon as we find an AZ home things will get VERY busy here, VERY fast. Until then, I wait. I am tired of waiting.

Out My Window: Weather has improved. It's been above zero for 3 days! I think it got above freezing today!  I saw a Robin on Wednesday. Spring is here!

Lent: Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. - 1 Peter 5:6-7

Last year during Lent & Easter my brother was dying and I was praying daily for him. It all happened so fast. He was diagnosed with cancer in February and died in June. Looking back to last spring all I see is grief. I don't remember Lent or Easter at all.

Next year I'll look back and see the chaos of moving a family of 6 across country, I hope.

Kitchen: Grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Journal Entry #10

Moving Along: House on market 151 days. Ugh. Moving date is still up in the air - still haven't found a place in AZ. Hoping for end of April. I keep praying.

Reading: Finished Tess. Such a good book. I believe I first read it when the Roman Polanski movie adaption was released, I would have been 15. Full of symbolism, it would be fun book to study in college. I can see how Tess was symbolically Eve - having sin trust upon her and living as a fallen woman. Eve (Tess) is ultimately redeemed by blood, but taking matters into her own hands, she is her own redeemer. Or perhaps it is a nod to the Douay-Rheims Genesis 3:15. Maybe this is why it is considered a feminist novel. Interesting how the religious climate in England (Anglican, Calvinist, Methodist, Deist) are portrayed in the men she encounters, and how each of them is unforgiving, or perceived to be - failure of Grace in the church. The baptism of Sorrow was a particularly moving moment in the book (Genesis 3:16). Got me teary eyed.

Just started O Pioneers! by Willa Cather. Another book about a strong woman. First time read.

Out my Window: Still cold. Below zero every night. Deep snow. Icy roads. Agony. Probably the coldest winter I have lived through.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Journal Entry #9

Moving Along: Looks like May 1st is our target date to move into our new house in AZ. Yeah! Now if we can just find that new house....Mr. Bee's company will help with the rent, but we have to pick a place. Five bedrooms with a pool, no busy streets, and a mountain view would be nice. And a 3-car garage would help a lot. 68 days and counting!

Out my Window: Ten inches of fresh snow and lots of ice. Roads are awful. Scary drive to work. Kids had their 6th day off of school this year (2014) because of weather. We had a couple of warmer days this past week but now we are back in the deep freeze for the next 10 days.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Journal Entry #8

Moving Along: 2 couples this week and 1 more tomorrow, but still no offer. But the rental offer looks likely! We will be moving this spring I hope.

Feels like life has come to a stand-still. Haven't finished my socks, my book or Greek Esther. Need to get going on stuff!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Journal Entry #7

weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. (Psalm 30:5b)

I woke up this morning with those words in my mind. Last night was horrible. I felt utterly defeated. Another showing, another "no, thanks." More snow. More cold. Can't find a 5 bedroom house to rent in the area in Arizona where we plan to live. Tired. I miss Mr. Bee - he's been so busy we haven't had much time to talk. And no matter how well-behaved my kids are, it is nice to have two parents in the house.

But! I woke up feeling refreshed and renewed and ready. Much more energy. Things have looked brighter all day.

The temps got into the 20s - felt like spring!

Found a house for rent that I like and it is not far from where we want to live.

Had another showing tonight.

So.....maybe tomorrow will be better still.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Journal Entry #6

Moving: I did the math and our house has been on the market for 133 days. Ugh. My sister suggests burying a statue of St. Joseph in the backyard. She did and the 13th person to look at her house bought it. I'm not ready to resort to idolatry, but seriously thinking about it. Another showing tomorrow. Found yet another house we like in Arizona - probably will be sold before we can make an offer.

Weighty Matters: Only 18.8 pounds to go to be back to wedding day weight.

Prayers: Thankful for a warm home, even though I want to sell it. Thankful for plenty of food, even though I need to watch what I eat. Thankful for healthy kids. Thankful for a hard-working husband. Thankful for reliable cars. Thankful for my understanding boss. Thankful for our patient realtor.

Scripture Verse: We were buried therefore with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the father, we too might walk in newness of life. - Romans 6:4

Thankful to God for the sacrament of baptism. Read a blog post today by an evangelical mother regarding how to keep children from going to hell. Nowhere does she mention baptism. Sad.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Journal Entry #5

Out My Window: Cold & snow. Unrelenting winter. Minnesota has cold, snowy winters, but this winter is well below normal cold and above normal snowy. Makes me wish the move to Arizona would come faster.

Feeding: Chili dogs & Olympics watching for dinner. :)

Moving: 4 couples looked at our house yesterday. Still no feedback, still no offer. Maybe a little hope on the horizon. Mr. Bee's new employer has suggested renting a house for us! We will know more this week.

On My Mind: Dieting as a sin. I saw this verse in an blog talking about gluttony and it got me thinking about legalism.

For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. -Philippians 3:18-19

I wish my study Bible wasn't already packed.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Journal Entry #4

Out My Window: Still very cold. Only got to 4 degrees today. We have about 2 feet of snow in the front yard. Feeling as if I have Seasonal Affective Disorder. Very tired all the time.

Pins & Needles: Finished my first sock, will cast on the second one this weekend. They are soft & warm but a little too loose.

Reading: I added two reading lists to my side bar. First is what I am reading at leisure (still Tess of the d'Urbervilles) and what I am reading in the Bible. I decided to read and sort of study the books of the Apocrypha this year. I have already finished Tobit & Judith. I really enjoyed Tobit (I've read it before). Judith has a great message but is too gory. Working my way through Greek Esther, which isn't much different from "regular" Esther.

Weighty Matters: I'm plumping up. I am now about 20 pounds heavier than when I got married. Not happy about it. My metabolism is not what it use to be. I need to start taking better care of myself. Cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and osteoporosis all run in my family. Really must make time to exercise and eat right all day.

Moving: No one has looked at the house since last Thursday. Open House again this Saturday.

In the Kitchen: Tonight we had veggie pizza.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Journal Entry #3

Today: -7 this morning when I drove Mr. Bee to the airport. Warmed up to -3 by the time we got out of church. Bright sun.

Super Bowl was today. Seahawks 43 Broncos 8. Watched it with the kids.

Used my weekend to climb Mt. Washmore. Got fairly caught up.

No open house or showings.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Journal Entry #2

Out my window: Six inches of fresh snow yesterday, bright sun and back to cold today. -10 when I left for work this morning.

On my mind: We had a showing last night, and again no offer. Their feedback was a 3/5. :( We all worked really hard to get the house clean & tidy and thought it looked great when we left, so optimistic! Then so disappointed!

I know that God hears my prayers and knows we want/need our house to sell. And somewhere out there someone is praying about a move to our area and is looking for a house like ours - and God will answer their prayers. And someone in Arizona is praying someone will buy their house - and God will send us to answer their prayers. So many prayers need to be answered.  Somehow it will all work out in His time.

In my prayers: Thanksgiving that my sister and her husband have accepted an offer on their house. They both retired and want to move to Florida to be near his parents. His mother is blind and his father has cancer. Very happy for them! And thankful too that we all got to and from our destinations yesterday in the snow, even though both Mr. Bee & I got stuck for a time in separate cars in separate places. But we got out and got going again and safely arrived at our destinations.

In my kitchen: Rigatoni & meat sauce. Garlic bread. Salad.

Verse in my heart: Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord! - Psalm 27:14

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Journal Entry #1

2014 has the promise of being a very eventful year in my life and I decided to journal about it. But here it is, end of January and I haven't started writing yet. So here goes...

Out my Window: Warmer today - mid-20s. Nice after 3 days below 0. Kids back in school after 2 days off because of the wind chill.

In the Kitchen: Made White Bean Chicken Chili in the slow cooker. Menu has been heavy on soups and casseroles lately.

Reading: Tess of the d'Urbervilles (Hardy). Read it way back in high school and really didn't enjoy or understand it then and when I started to re-read it I couldn't remember what happens in the novel, but it has come back to me as I've gotten further along. Such a sad story.

Pins & Needles: I'm knitting socks for me. First time sock knitter! It's been a long time since I've made anything for me. Looking forward to wearing them. Almost done with the first one.

Thought/Verse of the day For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation.    He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken. (Psalm 62:1-2)