Jars of Clay

When I was a kid my Ma often told me how things were 'going to get better.'  She was never one to keep the hardships of life for me. I was the 4th, the unexpected later-in-life baby due to a bad hook-up after a tumultuous marriage to an alcoholic, years of single motherhood, crushing life disappointments, exhaustion from years on the Detroit police force, the beginnings of mental illness & of course the ever threatening presence of poverty.  Then me. At almost 40? Sista girl was tired.When I wanted a new toy or new clothes, she didn't mince words. We couldn't afford it. When our lights or heat wasn't running. Sorry, not enough money to go around. When we couldn't get to places because we didn't have gas, I knew money for the month ran out. She let me in on all of it. The weight of financial worries sat like an elephant on my chest for much of my childhood.She often promised things would get better. Next year, she'd say. Next month, she'd say. When this happens, things will b … [Read more...]

Protected: Long on Love, Short on Toilet Cleaning: Our Merry Little Christmas

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A Great Finishing House

When we bought our first home in 2003 everyone said it was "a great starter home."  And it was!  Was.It had all new shiny-everything, a finished basement, a beautiful sun porch, a very big backyard.  The garden had been kept so meticulously,  we knew that the day we moved in would be the last time it ever looked so good.  When we moved in there were two of us with not much stuff.  It was a teeny-tiny bit above our price range but our dream starter home indeed.But now almost 10 years later it has all old everything, a cluttered basement, an aging sun porch and a garden that is all but dead.  Now there are four of us.  The little ones bringing in more and more stuff each year.  We could never sell it for what we bought it for.  It has become my dream finishing home.  I dream of being finished here.  Finuto.  Done.  Sionara.In the 10 years we've been in our home a lot of stuff has come in, but not much stuff has left.  I hate to say it, but a lot of times I feel a level of hatred at … [Read more...]

These Farting Animals are Dangerous

I'm willing to bet you $5.50 you did not know that livestock produces some of the most dangerous greenhouse gases—methane and nitrous oxide—through their digestive systems and their manure.And did you also know that these gases are far more powerful than the more commonly talked-about carbon dioxide?And did you also know that livestock is responsible for 18 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions?One more...livestock farming also uses huge amounts of water—nearly 8 percent of global human water use goes to grow food for cattle.And by now, your done with my fun facts for today.Can I just stop here & acknowledge that anything that has to do with helping solve global issues can feel terribly overwhelming?  I get it, I do because yeah, sometimes I turn away.  Sometimes, I simply cannot bear to hear about another starving baby girl.  But I'm asking you to hang in there with me and read on because there actually are small, everyday things you & I can do to make … [Read more...]

You MUST flea from my life you evil, monopolizing, maniacal insect you!

**Don't forget you can still win a $100 prize pack from McDonald's by commenting & pledging to spend time with your family on my post about the importance of family.**Sooooooooooooo...I have been angry, sad, frustrated, stressed and sweaty for the past 5.5 days? What could take me to these measures? What could make feel like a killer and push me past my carefully produced limits? … [Read more...]

This is what put me in the hospital last night…

My messy living room.  Or in the 4 words my friend Michelle likes to say to me often, "you doin' too much!"Last night at about 2:20am I woke up with contractions, getting fast & more intense as the hour went on.  At first I took some Tums.  In pregnancy, it seems Tums cures everything! :)  At about 3:30am I told my husband it was time to go the E.R.  I'm only 28 weeks -7 months-ish- and labor is not a good thing.Long story short, they gave me tributelene (or something like that) to slow and stop the contractions, put me on an IV drip for dehydration & told me to quit whatever it is that I've been doing too much of.  The whole time the baby's heart rate was great & there was no worry the baby was under duress.  We left about 4 hours later with the instructions of a day's bed rest & lots of water.So, what is it that I've been doing too much of?Well, if youv'e been following my last month you know I went into heavy nestin … [Read more...]

Life in the Ranch..

(That is in our Ranch style home...)We had a great anniversary weekend.  My in-laws watched Ransom while we went up to Macatawa Lake for a dinner at this pretty nice place overlooking a boat harbor.  An anonymous friend gave all the students at my school a $50 gift certificate there.  How is hot is that?!  The food was stinking delicious.  The kind of food thats so good you just keep looking at each other & smiling and nodding your head up and down and saying, "mmm-mhh," over & over again.  We also saw went saw the Star Trek flick which I loved and was fully engaged with from beginning to end though I have no prior Star Trek knowledge.  And then when we got home we rented the movie, "Milk."  I cannot say anything more about that right now because I have a huge long blog just brewing about it ~ in a nutshell, it was amazing.Last Tuesday, was Ran's last day of pre-school & they had a little performance they did for the parents.  Ransom did not sing one single song of the 8 … [Read more...]

Protected: this is what I love…

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off for a little cleaning…

If this article doesn't make you wanna go clean your house a little, I don't know what will.Off to change the sheets! :) … [Read more...]

that was lovely

I ran into one of my old students, Travon in the line at the grocery store today.  While I was helping little Ran man to put back all of the toys he'd just knocked over he told the attendant to put it all on his card.  I overheard her say, 'aww, that's so nice of you,' when I realized he bought our groceries!  Do you ever feel a little overwhelmed when folks go out of their way to be kind to you?  That was such a lovely surprise and encouragement today. … [Read more...]