Girl’s Time

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Five months ago, we planned a girl’s weekend for Mom and Daughter at Mount Hermon.

It was a perfect cabin to bake muffins, make pizza, rest and finish “The Talk.”

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Have you ever shared one on one time with your family member whether it is date night with your spouse or hanging out with you son or daughter? It is a special time for sure, and I encourage you to take the time to do so.

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Blessings, Rebecca

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Macrame

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Ever see the back of an unfinished rug? It is messy. Kinda like life sometimes. Recently, I watched Pastor Robert Morris preach a sermon on how it parallels our journey. People and events come and go which weave an intricate pattern called life.

At first glance, you may look at it and think that doesn’t look very nice, but then you turn it over and see the final product. The beauty is astonishing.

God sees us and can take the messes of our lives and turn it into something beautiful like a Persian rug shown below. Wow!

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We may not get the answers to all of our questions here on Earth that we’d like, but my hope is when we look back on our journey, we will see how God put all the pieces together that created our unique story.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart

and lean not on your own understanding;

in all your ways submit to Him,

and He will make your paths straight.

– Proverbs 3:5-7

Do you have a story you’d like to tell about how God wove a beautiful story in your life? I’d love to hear it.

Blessings, Rebecca

Planning Parenthood

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This week I struggled with writer’s block. So, I spontaneously asked my daughter, “Alicia, what should Mom blog about? She suggested that I write about planning to be a parent.

Are you in a season of planning parenthood? I tell you the truth. I discovered planning my family was more challenging than first thought.

Conception–  at age 35 I married Randy and I “planned” to have a honeymoon baby. Well, one month went by; no baby. Another month went by; no baby. When I spoke to friends, they informed me it could take up to a year to conceive. What? I surrendered it to the Lord and we conceived the next month. We welcomed our son Austin the following July.

Healthy pregnancy – at 36 I “planned” to have our second child. We conceived and unfortunately we lost our fetus at five weeks. Again, I surrendered our second child to God. We conceived again. Yet, during my first trimester, my OBGYN discovered cancer. You can read more about it at My Miracle. Praise God we welcomed our daughter Alicia the following September.

Give birth to a healthy baby – I “planned” to have healthy babies. Because I was over the age of 35, the doctors tested for potential genetic issues such as Spina Bifida,  Downs Syndrome, etc. I’ll be honest, these tests spurred a sense of fear in me. But I know fear doesn’t come from God. It is a tactic of the enemy. Again, I gave it to Him and thankfully we have two healthy children.

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Recover quickly – I “planned” to quickly recover from delivering my babies. It turns out, it took longer than expected to recover from my second delivery. I experienced more abdominal pain after my C – Section and I was exhausted raising a toddler and newborn.

Raise your child(ren) into adulthood – I remember thinking how fun it would be to have a baby…Their cute little toes and hand, smell so good, outfits are adorable, chubby cheeks, etc. BUT, I realized I was a Mom the first time I stayed up late one night nursing my sick infant back to health. It was difficult trying to sooth him while he struggles with fever, vomit and diarrhea at 2:00am. Walking my kids through life’s ups and down is challenging and yet so rewarding. I wouldn’t trade it for anthying.

In sum, we make plans, but they don’t always come to fruition. However, we can believe that God works all things out for good.

And we know that in all things God works for

the good of those who love him, who have been called

according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28

 

Feel free to share your parenting planning with us.

Blessings, Rebecca

Friends

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An important part of our family life is friends. My daughter’s best friend, Heather (pictured above on left)  is an intigual part of Alicia’s life. They share life together: The good, bad and ugly.

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My son, Austin, is plugged into his youth group Young Life is important that he connects with like minded high schoolers. They support another with life’s pressures.

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I have some gals I’ve connected with in the past couple of years. I appreciate I can share my life with them and they can share their lives with me.

I believe friendships enrich our family lives. Do you?

Do you have special friends you do life with?

Blessings, Rebecca

Community Hours

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When I was a child, we volunteered to serve our community in different ways such as picking up trash in the neighborhood. At my kids’ schools, they now call it community hours.

My thirteen-year-old daughter, Alicia, is taking a leadership class in 8th grade. One of her requirements is to perform a certain number of community hours for class credit.

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At church last Sunday, they announced an opportunity to assist with a pajama program designed to support children going through transition. Alicia said, “I want to help.”

So, on the following Saturday, we joined approximately 40 other volunteers fold, pack and sort hundreds of PJs for local children.

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Who knew it would be so fun and rewarding…Mom and daughter spending quality time together helping others? Wink,Wink.

Has your family participated in community hours or volunteered? I’d love to hear about it.

Blessings, Rebecca

Work Force

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This week, our son joined the work force. Austin is now landscaping for Mount Herman in the Santa Cruz mountains.

I am a proud Mama as he is following in his father’s footsteps gardening.  What a great skill set to have.

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It is a new season in his life. I believe once he receives his first paycheck, he will be proud of his accomplishments and appreciate the hard work that goes into buying items you need or want; an invaluable life lesson.

Do you have children who entered the work force? I’d love to hear their successes and challenges.

Blessings, Rebecca

Catastrophe

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With all the news of tragic events in our world, it’s a bit overwhelming to comprehend. In my recent prayers, I’ve asked God  to heal our land, because we desperately need it. He brought to remembrance a bible verse.

If my people, who are called by my name,

will humble themselves and pray and seek my face

and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven,

and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. -2 Chronicles 7:14

I pray for those whose lives were devastated by Hurricane Harvey.

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And, for those whose lives were destroyed by Hurricane Maria.

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Also, remembering and praying for families affected by Hurricane Irma.

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In addition, for those impacted by countless fires.

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Also, for those whose lives will never been the same after a senseless, horrific act in Las Vegas.

Las Vegas Mourns After Largest Mass Shooting In U.S. History

Although, it has been challenging to discuss natural disasters to my children, it’s been an even bigger challenge is trying to explain why people do evil things in our world.

Have you had a candid discussion with your family about tragic incidents? If so, I’d love to hear how you worked through it. Feel free to share with us.

Blessings, Rebecca

Birthday

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This day in 1965, my in-laws welcomed my husband into the world.  Happy Birthday Randy!

Birthdays can be bittersweet in that we celebrate our family and friends’ special day. Yet, for some, it is a somber day of reflection for the loss of a loved one. In our case, we lost a baby in between Austin and Alicia for which I am gently reminded each November.

My husband shares his birth day with my step-mom who is celebrating a very special birthday as she is undergoing chemotherapy for lung cancer. I am thankful she is still with us and doing extremely well under the circumstances.

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Our family celebrates birthdays in a variety of ways. Sometimes, we throw parties. Sometimes, we simply share a family dinner. We have fun picking out cute birthday cards and gifts for one another.

How do you celebrate birthdays?

Blessings, Rebecca

Self Care

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For some time now I have been thinking about better self care. Like many moms, I pour everything into my family’s well being. As a result, I don’t spend much time taking care of me.

This week, I challenged myself to step out of my comfort zone. I tried four things:

  • Drank more water. Instead if getting a coke at lunch or dinner, I purposely drank water with my meals. This was huge for me, because I love soda and have since childhood.
  • Cut out sweets. Often, I found myself grabbing candy out of  our vending machine at work. I didn’t buy one candy bar and you know what? I honestly didn’t miss it.
  • Rested. This is by far the hardest for me as I am always doing something such as laundry, cleaning house, buying groceries, helping with homework, etc. However, I carved out a Sunday afternoon nap. Ahhhh
  • Exercised. Again finding time in my schedule to work out is challenging. Yet, my son suggested we work out together as a family.  We had a great time helping each other exercise.

I am no health expert by any means. I am just sharing some things I implemented in my life. I definitely feel better physically and emotionally. I pray I can make it a habit.

Do you have a self care routine you’d like to share with us?

Blessings, Rebecca

Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well. – 3 John 1:2

A Time of Refreshing

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Left to right: Annette, Linda, Pamela, Sandra, & me.

This weekend, I attended my second annual women’s retreat at Mission Springs with some lovely lady friends. It was a time of refreshing.

Sometimes as parents, our tanks run empty taking care of our families and homes. I desperately needed some fun, fellowship and good food (minus cooking and cleaning).

Our guest speakers were fabulous a mother-daughter team. The mom was a missionary to Congo, Africa for ten years and shared her extensive experience with us. Her daughter graduated seminary and shared her life with us as well. The worship team was amazing! The food was delicious.

We experienced a miracle as well. Our friend, Linda, joined us during the day and went home at the first night. Around 3:00am her heart went into AFib and her husband informed us at 7:30am by her husband. Immediately, Sandi, Annette and myself prayed for her healing. Later that morning, during worship, I was singing away and felt a nudge at my right side. It was Linda! Praise God her heart returned to its normal rhythm and she rejoined us!

We enjoyed the rest of the conference activities and said our goodbyes Sunday afternoon. I am already looking forward to next year’s get together.

Do you take time for R&R? If so, I’d love to hear the ways you do. Feel free to share with us.

Blessings, Rebecca