my babies

my babies

Monday, January 16, 2017

10 whole months!!

Being the slacker Mimi that I am here of late I am posting Finley's 10 month photos just a bit late.  Sorry!!  He is growing like a weed and this has been the fastest 10 months of my life.  I swaney...this baby was just born three days ago!!!




Well howdy there Mimi!!  Where is my old buddy Mr. Beaver??


Uh...here I am Finley....please don't sling me around and pound me to the ground and chew on me and lick me and all that stuff you do or I might just faint!!




Mr. Beeeeever....you playin possum??



I will throw my attack bunny on you and y'all can be friends!



Why do all my play animals wind up on the floor Mimi???



Well, Finley...I try to keep them tucked up there but you just seem to sling about everything I give you right on down!   You little cutie-pie!



Finley, you are just about the sweetest baby ever.  You smile and laugh almost all the time.  You are ginormous!!  Your pediatrician says you are as big as a 15 month old baby.  Way off all the charts.  You are crawling like a madman and pulling up on everything.  I bet by next month you will be walking everywhere.  You talk and sing all the time and when you start making actual sense....well I don't see any kind of quiet in your daddy and mommy's future!  I love you little cuddle-bug!!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

meltdown time

i got up early this morning.  today is the day i start cleaning out, packing things, sifting through the years.  i started in my bathroom.  going through bottle after bottle of lotions, shampoos, body washes and did i mention dental floss?  good for years perhaps decades on that particular item. then i came across some hair ribbons and i just lost it.  a gargantuan flood of memories came to my heart.  combing little girls hair, whispers and giggles.  tears from snarls in long hair.  fights over the sink, over the mirror, over the tub.  time just fleeting through my mind.  years and years.  this house, i have come to consider, is a tomb.  every room and every corner holds some kind of memory.  mostly good.  this is the house where i raised my daughters.  struggled through homework, girlfriends, boyfriends, planned weddings, had showers, planned for grandbabies, endless pool days, and just the day to day hum of life.  this house holds up gallons of tears too.  memories i do not want to visit again when i turn the corner.  good riddance to those.  so meltdowns are bound to come.  many people have offered to help me pack and sort and i do so appreciate it and i will take them up on it for sure because....i am a hoarder afterall.....the stuff i have??  unreal.  but at first i just want to sift by myself.  shed tears at random over stupid things until it is out of my system.  once i get over the overwhelmingness of this move i will be good to go.  it is just so very hard.  but as i pack things i will take to my new home, things that will find a place in different surroundings.  new things yet unwrapped, old things that i cannot part with....i start to smile.  my heart leaps just a little at the new life placed before me.  anticipation, excitement, joy....all take the place of tears.  oh, i am going to cry plenty when i pull out of this driveway for the last time but when i walk into my new home for the first time and place the last item down in its place....a smile will take those last few drops away.  waking up for the first time when the sun is peaking over the horizon.... turning over to see my new husband...seeing his sweet face....  my smile??  huge.  just thinking about that makes me smile while i wipe the tears away from the crying jag i just had.  this house?  it really is just four walls and a roof.  home?  as i tell my girls, home is where your mom is.  and at my new home we will build new memories, new traditions, a new normal.  good memories of a new life for my girls, his girls...our girls.  our grandchildren and grandchildren yet to come.  a home where love overflows and meltdowns are kept to a minimum.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Fences

I just got off the phone with the invisible fence man.  I have had one of those around my property for 17 years.  They work great at keeping the dog inside her own yard.  I am taking Penny with me to my new home and we are moving the fence so she can still a (mostly) outside dog.  David's dog, Oreo, is inside for the most part and only goes out on a leash.  Talking with the fence guy made me think about the fences we put up in our lives.  For the most part they are invisible ones too.  I know I am so guilty of keeping people at an arms length.  Not letting them get too close or my fence just might turn electric.  Some fences are made of bricks.  We layer them one on top of the other until they are too high to reach.  But brick walls eventually crumble and fall.  Leaving behind rubble.  Kind of like the baggage we carry around.  Just rubble from old walls and fences.  Some fences are made of iron.  And good Lord they are hard to tear down.  Those are the kind we typically put up around things that are highly valued.  Like our hearts.  I know the one around mine was made of iron with a padlock and a little voltage for good measure.  So just like the fence I am going to move for my dog I could also move my own fences to my new home.  But I don't want to.  That old rubble of a brick wall.  That's the trash in my life I just need to leave behind.  That iron fence around my heart??  She's gone.  I unlocked that door and slowly let her creak open.  Funny thing about that.  I don't even close her up anymore.  Letting your guards down and opening up the gates to our hearts is so very scary and so exciting at the same time.  Then when you do.....you could just kick yourself for wondering what in the world were you doing!!  I keep my dog in for her safety and I think we just fool ourselves that keeping our hearts locked up is for our safety.  But it isn't.  When Jesus has your heart he guards it.  He protects it.  He tells me to not let my heart be troubled....  He will create in me a new heart.... Not a different one but a new one.  A renewed one.  One of soft, pliable flesh.  One that beats strong.  I have to say when your heart is heavily guarded it beats behind a door of iron and it is such a muffled sound.  But when freed??  It hammers out of my chest.  When I see my husband to be....it beats a rate I can't count.  When I think of our new life together??  I can't control the flutter.  All the while knowing that Jesus is holding this new, fragile heart in His loving hands.  No fences needed.

Friday, January 6, 2017

It's Startin' to Get Real, Y'all

We have set a wedding date.  Can you believe it???  I keep thinking that at any given moment David is going to look over at me and lay his hand out and say, "Fooled ya! Now gimme back that ring, chicky."  Except....he won't.  I keep telling myself that.  Over and over.  He loves me.  He really, really loves me.  Satan just loves to whisper in your ear and into your heart lie after lie.  He whispers things like, "he doesn't really love you and he is going to take off the first chance" or "why in this world would he ever choose a hairbrain like you??"  The lies go on and on.  But I just hung up on the phone with him about 30 minutes ago and he just called because he wanted to tell me that he missed me.  He missed me.  How about that.  We are having a rare snow storm here in North Carolina. Major milk and bread alert.  You know, for milk sandwiches.  But for safety sake we are each in our homes for probably the whole weekend.  And I miss him.  Very much.  I cannot wait to spend each and every day and night with him.  To wake up with him.  To eat breakfast and drink coffee with him each morning.  to come home from work and wait for him to pull up the driveway so I can run and fluff my hair and put on lipstick so I can greet him at the door.  To cook supper for him.  To talk of our day together.   To take a bath and slip into my pajamas and crawl into our bed so we can do that all over again and again and again.  It's getting real y'all.  Getting real.  Planning a wedding that is simple is harder than you think.  We really do not want a lot of hoopla.  Just a simple ceremony and cake.  Fancy, huh?  We are having it at the church where I have attended for over 30 years with my pastor officiating.  My pastor thinks so highly of David and is genuinely thrilled for me.  David comes with me often and my deepest desire and prayer is that he comes all the time with me.  Sunday school, Sunday night, Sunday morning and I would love for him to be a part of the Wednesday night men's Bible study.  He has a very small church family and is attached to them.  They only meet once per week for a sermon and we are just the opposite.  Something is going on there every day it seems.  It's hard.  But we both desire a firm foundation for our marriage and desire to be fed and instructed in the Word of God.  Both of us are praying and seeking God's will for this area.  I'm trying to let God have this area but it is so hard.   Don't think for a moment that Satan is not using this fiery dart.  He whispers to me, "see???  girl, you can't even get this new man to come to church",  "you're a big, fat, loser"  But greater is He that is in me than he who is in the world!!!  I am fervently praying over this and God will answer and take care of this.  Just trying to keep it real for y'all.  But back to wedding plans.  They are coming together.  I ordered a dress that I really like and I just hope it is as pretty in person.  I do need shoes....but when do I not??  I asked my friend Kelley to sing since she always said she would and she is.  I have picked out some songs to play for music and David is thinking about some to add.  Just instrumental.  We are having no attendants and just family and friends.  Close friends.  I could have a bunch of people because there are so many that I just love and adore but David really doesn't want anything super big and honestly I don't either.  Part of me wishes we had just ran off last weekend!!  I would be snuggled up with my husband right now if we had.  Our kids are excited and for that I am glad. So thankful I am that they all get along and really like one another.  This weekend is giving me a chance to go through my house and start to think about what to keep and what to sell and what to throw out.  So overwhelming!  I just left my mama's house and that is another issue that aches.  I have lived with or beside my parents for all but a couple of years of my life.  I am so used to running across the yard.  Sending my sweet, precious grandbabies across the yard on their tractors and tricycles to go to Grammy's and Paw's house.  I'm going to miss them so very much.  Checking on them each day.  Just looking out the window and seeing that they are there if I need them or that I am here if they need me.  That is going to be really hard.  But that is part of it.  Leave and cleave.  I will still see them several times a week and I am only going a few miles.  I can't live for them either.  They really think so much and truly like David and trust me into his care.  That means so much.  I may be old but I am still their little girl.  This new life I am about to step into is exciting and just a tiny bit scary.  But it is a good kind of scary.  The unknown of married life with him.  I want to do things right.  Be a good wife.  Please him.  Be supportive.  Pray for him as a wife can only pray for a husband.  It is starting to get really real.....and I can't wait!

Monday, January 2, 2017

A New Year

2017.  A new year.  A fresh start.  A clean slate.  Often on this blog I write about how each day is a new start.  Hence, the title.  God offers His mercies new each day.  Praise the Lord we get a fresh start each day with him because I, for one, need it. As I was reading in my Bible this morning from the book of Romans I was comforted by God's word that He wants me to offer my body as a living sacrifice in view of God's mercy.  Get that?  His mercy!  How that refreshes this sinful heart and soul.  God wants and desires from His children total devotion.  God's word does not say offer perfection.  If that were the case there would be no need for mercy.  For grace. For repentance, confession, correction and so on.  God is mercy and grace.  He doesn't just show those attributes; He is Grace and Mercy.  How I love that.  I need grace and mercy in abundance.  Do I have to accept that from God?  No, I do not.  That is my freewill coming in the picture.  He pours it out but I must allow it to flow into my heart and soul.  Have I ever rejected God's love?  His mercy?  His grace?  His forgiveness?  Yes, I have.  In my stubborn heart I have often forsaken the one who loves me the most.  As my favorite song states...."Prone to wander, prone to leave the God I love..."  So today, a new day. a new year, a new chapter starting in my life I am thrilled I get to start over with God.  To ask His forgiveness of the sins I commit.  Some, of which, are deliberate.  Yesterday at church the sermon was about the life of Paul.  The worst of sinners is what Paul calls himself in the Word.  But when Jesus interrupted the life of Saul and mercy, grace and love abounded....he became Paul.  The writer of most of the books in the New Testament.  Did Paul have a choice but to serve God?  Of course he did.  We all do.  To say that we don't is to rob God of his sovereignty.  That makes His love and grace arbitrary.  God is sovereign.  He will turn away no one who comes to Him.  He is not willing that any should perish.   He knows who will choose to love, serve and worship Him.  He knew Paul would say "Yes" to Jesus.  The Holy Spirit is the only soul winner that there is.  It breaks my heart to think of the ones who do say "no" to Jesus.  Many do and will continue to do so as the days grow shorter for this world.  Like Paul, I am chief among sinners.  But I am so thankful and grateful and taken away that the God who laid the foundations of the earth cares enough for me to whisper my name to come to Him.  I praise Him even more that I heard His call within my heart and soul and said yes to Him.  I am so thankful for a new year.  New days.  Will I continue to sin?  Of course, I am human.  As Paul says, "I do the things I do not want to do and do not do the things I should".  He continued to sin.  But I can throw my ugly sins down to the feet of the one who loves me and He is faithful and just and  will forgive me. I just praise His name for that.  Thank the Lord for a new year.  This year, 2017, I will take on an new role as a wife, step-mother and daughter-in-law.  I can't wait to see what God has in store for us.  To have the opportunity to lift up a husband each day in prayer.  to pray for his girls, my girls....our girls.  God's sweet mercies never end and this sin-filled girl is so glad.  So as a reminder to me and to you.....


Thursday, December 29, 2016

Wrapping up Christmas

This Christmas has come and gone.  With all festivities, food, family and fun that this ole gal can just about stand.  I am officially peopled out.  I absolutely adore my family but I am ready to get back to reality....aren't you?  Speaking of reality let me tell you something that is just unreal....
Santa came early on Christmas Eve this year....



The photo is terrible and my hand looks super gnarly but who cares.  I was so surprised and so blown away and ...well it is just unreal.    When I was first separated and then later divorced I felt used, ugly, unwanted, unloved and a host of many other horrible emotions.  After a few years I settled into a pattern that my life was full and I would never marry again.  God was enough.  He is my portion.  I was content.  Loneliness had fled my sad and heavy heart.  My life was full.  My family, friends, church, job and all my babies.  Each day was filled.  Then the Lord sent this man.  And he was sent from God, do not doubt that.  Slowly, he broke through my rock hard walls.  Is not just like God to send a builder to chip away the walls around my heavily guarded heart?!  Now, I did not miss my former husband.  I no longer love him but I did at one time so when former love dies and withers away you form a callus of sorts.  And so very slowly David has chipped and carved and worked to win this heart wholly.  I love him with my whole heart.  I cherish him like no other.  He proposed so sweetly.  He even shed a few tears and of course I cried like a little girl.  I'm crying right now.  To go from unwanted to wanted.  Unloved to loved.  Ashes to beauty.  We are so funny....our children are all thrilled and want plans and details and dates.  We are just letting it all sink in.  You see, he was thrown away too. So when two people who resign to be alone and are placed together by God's hand it makes each moment so much sweeter.  There is something about a more mature love.  A reality that sinks in.  He has gray hair, I am not thin and sleek. We're okay with that.  He tells me I am beautiful and I tell him I like his gray hair.  We like early bedtimes and not a lot of commotion.  We know our roles and we neither one resist or fight them.  He takes care of some things and I take care of some things.  It's what you do as a wife or a husband.  Younger couples fight and quarrel over dumb things.  When you get to be our age that stuff does not matter.  I love that.  I have a ton of pictures I could share of my babies and all the hoopla but I think I will let that rest.  This precious ring and what it means is my Christmas memory this year. Is it not  just like our God to show His love through others?  He sent this sweet man to me and that is a gift straight from heaven.  

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Wonders

Christmas is just a few days away and even though busyness surrounds me and overwhelms me....Christmas is a few days away.  In my Sunday School class one of my sweet teachers, Wally, posted a question to us.  Do we still have the wonder?  You know, the wide eyed wonder of a child at Christmas time.  Somewhere in our life we lose that....when??  I have no clue.  Wisps of it come back from time to time.  When I watched my own children and their excitement.  Now my grandchildren....such pure pleasure.  But "wonder" for me?  Not so much.  Am I hardened?  Am I cynical?  Am I apathetic?  Maybe.  I think, for me, I am so consumed with.... busy.  All the things I am doing are important.  Need to be done.  Marked off the checklist.  But the "wonder".  It isn't even on my list.  Shame on me.  So today, I stopped....the busy.  I have baking to do, wrapping to do, cleaning to do...blah, blah, blah.  I'm going to go get a pedicure.  Does that incite wonder??  Nope.  But it does knit together a relationship I am forging with one of David's girls.  she asked me through a text earlier today and I almost texted back, No, thank you though....but I didn't.  I love both of his daughters and if the future holds what I think....they will become my daughters.  Never did I ever dream I would be a part of four young ladies lives....Now that, is a "wonder".  See, wonders are really everywhere all the time.  we like to label the biggies...childbirth, milestones, graduations and the like.  But really?  Each day is sprinkled with tiny wonders.  I just need to look for them.  I need to set aside my checklist and look.  Not just look but see.....Not just hear but listen.... Not just grab and take but feel.... Not just zip through and rush by but smell and taste.  Wonders never cease.  So this Christmas season take in the wonders.  Bask in them.  Small they might be.  Big they might be.  God is so gracious and so good and so" wonder-full"  Let us not be "wonder-less"  Offer Him the wonder of our adoration, our Thanksgiving, our devotion.  He created all the wonderment around us....Thank Him for that this Christmas.