Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Creating a Place of My Own!

So last night I cleaned and put in order my part of the bedroom! It looks so much better...Take a look....see for yourself and pray I can keep it that way. Comments welcome!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Goodbye again!

Tonight Jack and I had dinner with Jessi Lynn before she went back to Madison and we hugged goodbye for the last time in 2007.
It is hard to be the parent of adult kids and release them to their destiny. I miss having Jessi with me. She has been so good for me. I miss her encouragement and her help. I miss her delightful ways. I miss living in a big house with a talented and energetic daughter. I lost all that due to John's great anger but God is bigger that that. I expect good things to come from all this somehow. I am in my doll house here with someone who is not my daughter. Miss Jenna helps a lot but could never replace Jessi. Fortunately the situation is not similar and there is no competition for my daughter's position. Many things have changed since we bought this tiny house and took our losses but one thing never will. I will remember our precious time with Jessi and how much she helped us at the LaValle house...but now is now and she is gone and will not return until early spring. Winter is coming and she never loved the cold. So Georia gains and WI loses for now...I have things to do and people to help so I will stay busy and occupied. Just trying to keep my head above water financially will keep my attention. Goodby is always hard but oh those wonderful reunion!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Fall is finally really here!

Yesterday I took Jack on a long meandering ride around to look at the fall leaves and it was so pretty. I was looking for Sugar Maple Trees and really when we found them I would have had to climb a fence and go by cows to get some leaves for my Life Connection class. So even though the story was of Sugar Maples we used regular red and yellow maple leaves for our waxed leaves project. Jack even thanked me for taking him. One night last week he complemented the dinner too. I told him I liked how he was acting and he was glad I noticed. But then today came and he turned the air conditioner on with the heat still up to the top and I asked him not to. That started a hum-dinger of a discussion. Phooey! I felt bad today as my sinuses are acting up and I ache all over but cannot find a place to be away from the noise of my life. So back to the road and the pretty leaves with music playing and a cuppa tea. Yeah!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Midnight at the Oasis

Here I sit blogging when I should be sleeping...scratchy eyes and all. Peggy and her girls just left and I need to unwind a tiny tad before sleep overtakes me. The dishes are done and the rooms picked up. It was an enjoyable night all in all.
I have a big thought:
The most important opinion you have is the one you have of yourself, and the most significant things you say all day are those things you say to yourself...so tell yourself the truth bathed in dreamdust....tell yourself the dream bathed in confidence....tell yourself how much you are worth bathed in what God says you are worth...tell yourself you can succeed based on what God can do through you with your full cooperation.
Nightime thoughts are so sweet to sleep on.

Update on the home front

Am presently in Madtown with extra kids and some wanting special things so I am escaping for a moment to digest my week. Took care of the Peterson youngest 3 last night and this morning while mom/dad and Josh went on an adventure. I cannot believe that Joshua is going to be 13 this next week. Zowweeeee! Time flies.

Jenna saw a specialist yesterday and it looks like a surgery will be scheduled by Monday so she can get rid of some pain that keeps her grim. The silent treatment ended after I dealt with it in my own special way. It worked out okay then. I wish her all the best and am so grateful for the help she has given but want to encourage her to get well and get on the bus labled "maturity". So I try. Not that people have to be stuffy or religious or set in a routine and immoveable. No no that is not maturity it is creeping death. I want to see my friends growing toward peace with themselves and their story. Sometimes we get stuck and I hope I can be an encourager of those who are stuck ....... to get slick and unstuck with Jesus' help! Yeah!

Lunch with Jess was good, only the appetizer was really good but we visited Red Robin for old times sake and enjoyed catching up. Then we went to my favorite Goodwill to look for books and small things as gifts for the upcoming holidays. Jess found 6-7 tee's and was pleased. She and Mark are going to Wildheart tonight. Music is consuming! I love spending time with her and hope I can spend more before she takes off but it is coming up fast so perhaps no...She will be in St.Louis by next Sunday night if things so right.

Spoke with mom this morning and she seemed stiff and reluctant to really open up. Something is wrong there but I have no clue how to deal so will continue my M.O. of just keeping on and maybe it will pass. It could be me or it could be something else that is bugging her. I will just do my best to keep on being me and not let the ups and downs affect how I deal. Go Lyndee!

Had a nice lunch with Pam S yesterday at the Wooden Spoon in my town and the coffee was Ghostly Pumpkin or something but oooooh delicious! Quiche was good too, country veggie with mozzarella. The Chef there just lost his life partner to suicide from being an invalid but he continues to bake and cook like a top notch gourmet chef. We had a good conversation and made a plan about how to help someone come to maturity.

My other Pam (W) is off to Milwaukee to see her baby grandaughter for the first time. She will come back with pictures and stories! Yeah! I wish her the best. I miss my kiddies! But then if you cannot love the kids you want then love the ones you have nearby! Good plan lady!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Mistakes are easy, corrections get harder!

So, Jenna is in a blue funk. I mean, crying and silent, uncommunicative and without any realization of anyone elses' existance. I spoke to her best bud Sarah this morning about this and gave Jenna a hug from her as she won't answer her calls right now. Jenna cried in my arms as I gave her the message.
Oh my! Her uncle died and the family did not get ahold of her in time so she could attend the funeral. She is in pain from a fibroid tumor and an ankle sprain. She cried until she got a bad headache, when she is not crying she is sleeping. She talks in a whisper and I cannot hear her and for sure Jack cannot.
Would you prayer warriors out there please pray for her to come back into normalcy. I know she is angry and sad and maybe there is a bit of self-pity trying to take over too. I have to live in a very small house with her and she needs to get about being part of the team soon. She has no money that I know of and is in no shape to go out applying for jobs. Her Monday and Friday home health jobs don't pay much and every other week she gets two 2 hour cleaning jobs. I am trying to help her but she needs to help herself just like we all do. Move forward and paste on the positive and eventually it will be real! Journal all the pain and someday you can burn it or remember how God brought you through...
I did make her talk to me about the day in a normal voice. I said "Jenna, I need to know what your plans are for the day. If you do not know now think and I will ask again in 15 minutes."
She went outside under the tree and sat looking like Rodans "Thinker" and came in and we talked briefly. I just spoke to her on Jack's phone and she is giving him a shower now and then going out to mow the yard. I am the orchestrator of the home movement and I need to keep it going with my energy and authority or we will all sit around and cry because there is no food or clean towels!


Sunday, October 21, 2007

Last night was a fun time with Eliana Rane!She arrived at around 7:30 PM and went home at 4 AM. She actually did not sleep until around 1:30 AM. I hoped she would sleep in while her parents needed to sleep after being out watching Jessi Lynn's show last night in Spring Green. We played and read books and made up stories and made toast, ate cereal and fruit along the way.

My theory is to get to know the child and develop trust before imposing rules that seem almost more than they can bear. She obeyed me about what part of the house she was to stay in and being quiet when Tisha and Karah were sleeping. She cooperated and was most pleasant to be with. I liked the silly games we came up with. We watched Iron Chef -Eggplant together. How enjoyable was that??? After Mike called and said they were going out to eat I simply turned out the lights and called her into my bed to rest with her toys. Once she got quiet even though reluctently she immediately fell asleep.

She is truly a special child with an amazing imagination and a strong will but a pleasant spirit. Of course I will find all that is wonderful about all my grandkids and treasure those things but even the negative things may work in their favor as Romans 8:28 says it will for those who love God and are called according to His purpose. Yeah!

So I look forward to creating relationships with my grands! Each one is uniquely created in the image of God and with His marvelous love of variety. Eliana has her father's resistance to sleeping when anything else is going on. Her sense of humor is gentle and kind. Beck seems drawn to physical activities around the ever present "Balls" just like his daddy did. He is a bit of a clown too. I sense Evie is mama's shadow and will be a lover when you finally win her heart. But these are just things that Gramma thinks from what she is able to discern in short amounts of time with these precious grands. Being a gramma is a delight!

Call to pray!

Hello Morning! I squinted for sure when I realized my sleep was done and kids were expecting to go to church. Checked my phone and found a message that brought me sorrow and caused me to begin to pray. My friend Hatiatu from Africa has been detained in Minnesota with an ankle bracelet and awaits deportation which will lead to her death if God does not intercede. Hatiatu is from a Muslim country where she is married to a muslim. Hatiatu is a Christian and her husband has the legal right to have her killed or kill her himself for not recanting Christianity and returning to the muslim religion.
Last night I had Eliana while Mike and Jessica attended Jessi Lynn's last show for the year in WI. I was up late and so tired but I knew I needed to go to church and take Metrie and Kar. When I got there the spirit of God was strong in the worship and the annointing was on the speaker. He called out people to stand if they had need of healing and prayed, then addictions and prayed, then finances and prayed before he began to speak. I stood for my need in faith. Then he had us turn to 2 Chronicles 20:1-23. This was the story of Jehoshaphat and bears reading when you feel you cannot win in your own strength against a strong enemy. He talked about the 4 positions that Jehoshaphat took and how he heard from God. It was good! It led me to think of Hatiatu and her position against a strong impossible situation that the devil has imposed upon her.
I ask any of you that pray to pray strongly for God to intervene in this situation. Hatiatu is greatly gifted by God. He has a plan for her and I do not want it cut short! I am certain she does not either!So I cannot wait to see what God will do if we all petition Him for Hatiatu...

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Kisses from Heaven

Love it! I was walking around the house with Tisha. She was playing and I was with her and walking. I bent over her and kissed her forehead and she smiled, grabbed my hand and put it to her mouth 2x. I knew I was being kissed by an angel and I rejoice!

Victoria is Back!

When I moved I dragged my entire collection of Victoria Magazines to my current attic. My friend Jeanne carried them up the ladder in boxes and put them toward the back as I had considered dropping them off at the library and she astutely discerned my angst at parting with them. This week I received an issue of the new "Victoria" and love it!
  • They have a fashion section with the antique dresses of Tasha Tudor which will be put up for auction on Nov. 10/11 in New Hope PA by Witaker-August Auction Co. I adore Tasha Tudor and though I don't as often collect her kids books as I collect things about her, her Corgis and her life. She fascinates me! If only she were a Christian. Perhaps? She is in her 90's now.
  • Dessert Recipes: A Sideboard of Sweet Temptations with photos... oh so alluring!
  • Rebecca Rather - The Pastry Queen of Texas....gifts and mmmmmn good treats
  • Alexandra Stoddard - A Room of One's Own- Grief she writes in longhand with special colored inks! I love it! Fantasy come true!
  • A New Book for Tasha Tudor lovers - Forever Christmas- $18.99 (Little, Brown and Co.)

Into each tawdry life some elegance must fall. Thank you Victoria for your take on elegance and beauty!

Fun is Fun!

Everyone that I know has a differing opinion about what "Fun" is to them. I think many things are fun...watching a sunset, playing with a child, reading stories, scrapbooking, doing a project with a friend, rearranging, redocorating my house, cooking something special, getting ready for a party, shopping in a bookstore or a funky boutique, eating at a special place with a special friend, reading cookbooks, canning and lining up the jars, sketching on a warm, sunny day, walking the beach by the ocean when it is 70 degrees, listening to my daughter sing, singing praises to the Lord alone, taking a deep, hot bubble bath with tea to drink, getting a new copy of Victoria magazine, bringing flowers to a friend, giving gifts and wrapping them delightfully so the opening can be as fun as the gift, playing with my dog, watching "Dog Whisperer" and then trying out his techniques, blogging and adding pictures that enthrall, reading Ashley's blogs, looking at pictures of my grandkids, having a fun secret, exercising and seeing it work, painting a picture, writing a journal, reading just the right thing in the Bible when I am needy, sitting in the twilight thinking and planning, decorating for Christmas, spring planting of flowers and vegetables, the smell of drying spices in the house, hearing from a long ago friend and much more. Regular life is groovy! I don't mind the rough times and the drudge times as long as I can intersperse them with "Fun"!
It doesn't make losses less impacting but it does help me through those times.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Looking Ahead!

Well, my life has been greatly changed and complicated in the past year and a half. I am not in LaValle any longer. I thought perhaps I would die there but the whole world shifted to the left and I am still braced for the next shock wave.

All that to say that Thanksgiving has lost it's luster. I loved gathering in the LaValle dining room with family and decorating for fall with pumpkins and leaves with table groaning under the load of favorites I cooked for them. The hunting would go on but they would return for Pie. No more.
Last year we had an early Thanksgiving at Ira and Ashley's and my kids were all together. This year due to many things (not the least of which is the unresolved issues of apologies from John and Mom due to Jessi Lynn) we will be gathering at Suzanne's big table and Jessi will be missing from our midst. She cannot afford to stay that long...needs to sing for her supper where they pay her well and to be honest it is just so unresolved here.

Mike complicated it for me by insisting that I force the issue of reconcilliation or he will not attend. Yikes! How can that be forced? It is a heart issue. Comfort has little to do with it. I would not do that to him and I will not do it to her but guess it will fall where it may. I cannot stay silent forever. I will not follow in denial but I will not try to control it either. My heart is so damaged and I wonder what to do of value. I can fight. I am good at fighting. I can run. I know how...But neither will help anyone, least of all me.

I cannot insist I have no resentment for the raw deal I got, but even that I can forgive. I had to buy a house after we spent our retirement getting into LaValle and keeping that old place going. It was a shoestring deal and then our income was cut by $13,000 and our bills went way up due to mortgage and insurance etc. The story is not over either as add that to the trauma of Jack's health issues and the burns and me having to go half-time and losing half that money...$9,000 more lost per year. Wow that adds up to a $22,000 loss in a year not counting the added mortgage.

Money is important but God has taken care of us in the midst of this deal. The real resentment is having my daughter pushed out by my brother and mom. I have a huge hard time with that. Mom still is polite and kind to the woman that took away her husband and left her in a terrible spot. I am perfectly okay with that... and Mom can forgive Jail-birds and alcoholics but my daughter who only helped me and tried to live her dream. No, she rejected her. WHY?

It comes down to bottom line. I know that Mom and Dad tried to abort me. It didn't work. Then Dad refused to accept John for a number of years, blamed mom for tricking him. So instead of learning from his beginnings John became like the dad who rejected him. My dad was a wild man without limits that would have made him good or at least better. He struck down many.
Some cannot forgive him his excesses. I have and peace came. My mom chose her son over all others. I understand that but I have two sons and that gives me even more perspective. My mother used strategy and schemes to make her way. I do not blame her but Oh my it has caused her to spend her old age trying to undo a scheme done to her. Is this what happens to those who live by the sword???? Live by the scheme and die by the scheme...I wish I knew.

Jessi Lynn is living her dream. She sings and writes and pushes to make it work in the face of impossible odds. No one can diss her without shame. My brother is not living his dream. He is working it to make it easy. Being sneaky is just easy. Like parent comes then the child...becoming what they do not respect but defending it as their right. I have no such excuse. My sin is mine and no blame can excuse it. I learned it in a mental hospital in 4 days. I do not have to be what they have made. I can be better. God came into my life and empowered me, challenged me and disciplined me and let me fail but loved me still. Mom talks to others and calls me a failure. I know better so it cannot penetrate my heart. It hurts me but not so deep I cannot forgive but call my daughter a failure without cause and I say "Fie upon you beasts!"

Does this mean I am without forgiveness? No,but I should like to see the truth come out and responsibility be plain for all that has happened. I will own mine. I wanted to believe more than the evidence showed and I stayed too long trying to live in a place of memory. I trusted when there was no reason to trust except my heart longs to trust. All done now...I am going forward.

What does this mean for Thanksgiving? Well, come and see! My love is bigger than my hate and it will always be.
Why? Because Jesus went to the cross for me. He died so I could live. He that was sinless embraced me, a sinner and a wretch. Now I am His beloved, so how could I not forgive? But will I be silent about the truth? Perhaps not.... I am still looking ahead!

Mind Blown Read

Came down to work in Madtown and S handed me a written clinical interview with Tisha and Metries' mom and various professionals to determine her ability to mother. I never read such a tale of woe before. This lady (mere 22) has every reason to be nutty as a fruitcake and she is hanging on to the sanity she does have for dear life. Her daddy was shot by mama's boyfriend in front of her when she was young young and she remembers as they were arguing over which one was actually her biological father. When she was 10, living in the projects in Chicago, her mama was arrested and went to jail for 5 years for battery and reckless endangerment after stabbing a man. She went to her mama's relatives who proceeded to abuse her terribly and treat her and her brother very poorly. She witnessed her uncles murder while in the back seat of a truck in an attempted carjacking. A cousin got shot while trying to protect her from attack. Later another cousin was physically attacked while walking with her. She was threatened and beat up 3 girls who were harassing her for no reason and later they came into her gramma's house and shot it up and her little niece was shot and died as she ran into her arms. This is all before high school. I cannot go on.

My heart breaks for this young woman. I have spent time with her and she is trying to be upbeat and positive as a cover up for a whole big ball of pain...I love her daughter Tisha and believe that S is the right home for this child and that her mama couldn't possibly protect her and raise the other two when she is a felon and finds it very difficult to find and keep jobs. Homes are illusive when you cannot pay the rent. Metrie and his mama are close, she is more like a big sister to him I think but she loves him and there is another daughter who is presently with the bio-dad a lot while mom is homeless and without sufficient employment to qualify to keep them. Metrie needs a stable home so badly. This is sad...oh so sad!

If it were possible to help this young woman she would be one to help and I believe would benefit from the help. As it is...it is a no win. The worst part of it is that during another really hard thing with a dying boyfriend she was reading the Bible and listening to Christian tv and it turned bad. She now cannot seem to pick up or read the Bible as she blames God for the loss in her life. Her list of pain is so long that it boggles my mind.

She needs a man in her life at all times as it gives her value. She is best friends with her mom and her social circle is tiny. She reflects the views of the few people she spends time with and I wonder if she has opinions of her own...maybe a few caused by the pain of her life. She is a realist so there is no fantasy world in her head to escape to. Where does she go to find any peace?

No, daughters do not worry I will not take her in. My house is overful with those who have problems enough with less reason. I cannot walk away from this story without praying for this woman and thanking God that I survived my raisin' and came to know God and not to reject Him. God will have to walk into her life and touch her for her to come out of what has happened to her. I give her credit for staying alive. I am not going to hold her mothering skills against her. God knows and I cannot fathom it at all. Very seldom do I find myself so struck with the violence and the horror of a life. My mind is blown.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

On with the Plan!

So I have given up the idea that Jack will be focused on his own healing. I have to remind him and I meet much resistance for anything that takes an effort without immediate gratification. He is still extremely angry with me for withholding the truck keys and I have no intention of changing my mind on this matter. He has been inattentive, made bad decisions where he scared himself and he has gotton lost in our neighborhood. He often does not know where we are even if we go there daily. Those things added to the things he doesn't remember every day and my decision is final.

We had words again yesterday about his exercise that the Chiro wants him to do. Simple thing of hanging his head off the end of the bed for 2+ minutes at a time to change the neck curve and retrain the muscles that were curling downward. He insists it gives him a headache to do it more than once at a time. Having been with him multitudous times at the chiro when he does it 3-4 times at once for 2+ minutes I found that to be merely an excuse and disregarded it and pushed him to try to do it 3X per day for 3X of 2+ minutes each time. You would have thought I asked him for an organ. No way and he was mad and screamed "Shut your mouth" at me. I did.
But the rest of the evening was taken over with my thoughts. I stayed quiet and he got normal again telling me how much he loves me and so forth. I do not doubt that but I needed to ask God how to go about this "caring for Jack" project. "Maybe I need to change my focus?" I thought.

I got my answer this morning in my devotional time but I made a decision last night that will help me to focus differently. Even now that I am the main decision maker in the home and responsible for much that goes on I cannot forget that I am important regardless of the duties I perform and I need to focus on keeping myself mentally and physically and spiritually healthy. I cannot do him any good or respond well if he is what every day is about. So ...I got up at 5 AM and got dressed in my exercise clothes. I went to 24/7 and did 20 minutes cardio and 20 minutes resistance then went home, took a shower, and did devotions for 45 minutes before I began the laundry/breakfast/ordering the day on the white board and so forth routine.
I am sinking like a rock at 12:40 PM at the office so decided to write for awhile and then go drink gallons of water. I have every intention of getting into the physical routine somehow 2X per day. The dogs need playing with and brushing and I need to stop being accessible at every moment. Jack may never decide to do his exercises but I have decided to do mine.

It is strange to me how his mind works now but I am trying to take the times he is unfair and give them up to God cheerfully. God is working in me through this and I want to be thankful and accepting of the lesson. The other day Jack said he was sorry he hadn't walked with me back when I was asking him to and he still could. I do not want to have regrets though mine would be for being impatient with him now. So readers pray for us in this strange Jackdango dance we find ourselves doing. Steps may change but the tempo needs to stay upbeat!

Friday, October 5, 2007

A day in the life of a church secretary...waiting..

Today I got here prepared to be patient. Jack is cleaning the upstairs this week and I have some community service hours that need to be filled by Nick, a 14 year old who attends, so it will get done with supervision.
Jenna is moving to my sofa tonight so all her stuff has to be put in storage for the winter. This is a temporary situation to benefit us both. She is doing heavy stuff by herself as I have to be here to supervise this cleaning thing. Someone donated mega clothing for the plus sized woman so women are coming in and trying on the items offered for free...I am the 'salesclerk' who tells them if it looks good or not! I took a couple things and will try them on later. Pretty good chance they will fit at size 18. Most of the clothes are larger.
I am in the mood to see a movie but there is no time and the one I want to see takes no passes so I must wait...
Did you ever hear the comment "Kill the Messenger"? I am familiar with it just because I pass on messages to Pastor. Today the worship leader for this weekend who's name is Jody called to tell me after I texted and left messages - that she can't lead this Sunday as her teeth broke and no way is she standing up in front of church singing with no teeth. Interesting picture that brings forth...Oh my! So none of the other worship leaders can lead. I am out of town on Sunday to Milwaukee and so guess Pastor and Sue will have to do that too. Oh my! They are still in Springfield so I e-mailed them the report.
Jack and I went to the neurologist again yesterday and no new meds or anything. Just a wry face and the comment that Jack is just klutzy, not worse. Funny... but I still do not want to let him drive or go up and down stairs! He says I smother him but oh well...it is what it is! He is up to 194 pounds now so picking him up after he falls is very difficult. T. V. watching is bad for the waistline.
Well, the mailboxes need filling so off I go... and a new outfit is being critiqued as I speak!