A Spoonful of Sugar

Making every day life as a mom just a little bit sweeter.

Yellow Light Testimony July 14, 2010

Filed under: Jesus rocks!,Juicy Little Mommy Tidbits,Speaking a Thousand Words... — Janine Chance @ 9:44 am

We all remember that game, right?! Red light! Everyone stops….and thennnn…Green light! Everyone run, run, run…run for your life! Then…Red light! Remember how hard it was to go from green to red in an instant? Someone always fell over or tripped up trying to come to a dead stop after flying across the yard in the hopes of being the first one across the finish line. There was no yellow light in that game…no slowing down to give you time to think. Hmmm. Sounds so familiar. Oh! that would be because that pretty much describes my life right now! Well, last night, I slowed down. Finally got the yellow light, and it wasn’t because I got smart, or used wisdom. No, it took an injury.

Here’s my story.

I absolutely love, love, love having people at my house and entertaining.

This describes our home:


We love it, but it’s all fun and games until…

We had friends over for dinner, and I decided to make my homemade zeppoles

(a delectable Italian donut~recipe to be posted on a later date) for dessert.

I borrowed their fryer (they live right next door) to make it easier and move the process along. I was once again going a hundred miles an hour flying around my kitchen, cleaning up, getting ready to make coffee..you know, movin‘ and groovin‘. I went to move the fryer over to get to the coffee pot, (the important stuff) when the rubber feet on the fryer got caught up and studdered on the glass cook top stove and hot oil came flying out. A large splash on the inside of my wrist immediately began to burn, along with the splashes of oil that hit my neck and chest. I paused, trying to collect myself, and to see how bad it was. Was I on fire? Was my entire neck and arm melting away? My husband came over immediately and looked at my neck. His alarmed face was sign enough that it was bad. In my mind, I immediately began to pray.

I mean, what else should I do? Screaming certainly wouldn’t have been beneficial, so I decided to go with prayer. Good choice.

Now, you may not believe that God can heal, but I myself have experienced it. Not just once, so, I knew He could, and wanted to heal me.

Even though I’ve experienced it, I still hear myself say,

‘God, help me in my unbelief’…after all, I’m just human you know.

My friends immediately sprung into action, getting all of the items needed for first aid for burns….ice packs, vitamin E, Aloe, you name it…My wrist was swollen and blistering and the blister on my neck had broken open. The pain was intense. My husband and friends gathered around me and prayed, while I placed the ice pack on my neck and chest. I was most concerned about my wrist because it was the one closest to the fryer and got the biggest splash of oil, and I couldn’t bend it. As they prayed, I felt the pain begin to subside. By the time they were done praying, the blister had gone down, there was only some shading left where the blister was, and I was able to move it all around.

I went to bed, exhausted, but feeling pretty good. The big test for me and my unbelief was getting through the night…

once the ibuprofen wore off, and time went by without putting ice on it…

“I know He can do it, but would He do it for me? Now?”

I fell asleep at 11 last night, and slept through until 6:30 this a.m.

When I woke up, my once burned wrist was underneath my pillow,

tucked up under my head without a care.

I pulled it out and looked.


That’s it….that’s all that was left, without an ounce of pain.

I immediately reached up and grabbed my chest, and felt the blister, but no pain.

Slightly disappointed, I looked into the mirror in the bathroom and saw it there.


“That is what your arm should have looked like..” is all I heard.

That one little spot at the bottom of my neck is a small example of what I escaped everywhere else.

(Don’t mind the freckles…= )

Looking at my clothing, I should be covered with blisters.

The oil went straight through my clothes, but never burned my skin.

What did I learn from this, besides the fact that God is awesome and miracles do happen?

Add a yellow light.

SLOW DOWN!

I tell my girls that all the time, so I need to do as I say. Lesson learned.

I am thankful to God, and to those who prayed, but I leave you with this:

Let your testimony be your balanced life, not your lack of burned skin.

P.S…I did turn to my girls when it happened and said to them, “This is why Mommy tells you to slow down.” The mom in me just couldn’t help myself. It was important for them to learn the lesson along with me. I took advantage of the whole ‘I say things for a reason’ moment. Moi importante, Mommies.

This post was linked to:

Wordful Wednesday @


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May Moving Madness!~ Life Under the Big Top May 19, 2010


picture courtesy of moosemedia.net

I have to start out this little ‘circus-themed’ post singing…I-T-Y-S! I-T-Y-S! (OK, you have to sing those letters out, with attitude and feeling!)

That’s a little joke between my girls and I. Whenever something happens that we said would happen, we sing the ‘I-T-Y-S’ song.

Oh, sorry…let me clue you in.

It’s the ‘I told you so’ song !

I love getting to sing it to my girls when they are insistent about something, that I, (because I am just so old and decrepit and have been around longer), know is not accurate. When the realization comes that I was actually right, I say to them,

“Oh please? Please can I sing it?” They dramatically roll their eyes, smile and say, “Fine, Mom…if you have to.”

Ahhh…the joys of motherhood!

Why am I singing the ‘I told you so’ song?

ONLY BECAUSE I TOLD YOU GOD WOULD DO IT!!! AND HE DID IT RIGHT ON TIME!

(I’m certainly not saying that you were wrong, or not believing with me…it’s just so much fun to sing that song!)

I know it has nothing to do with a circus! I just couldn’t help myself!

Thanks for putting up with me. *sigh* Ok, back to the circus thing…

(*Ahem*…in my best ‘ring master’ voice…)

Step Right Up…Ladies and Gentlemen!! Come join us under the Big Top!

Come and see what amazing and spectacular things we have in store for you!!

That’s right, my fine friends! It’s aaaa-maaaa-zing!!!

We have an address!

Incredible? You bet! Not only do we have an address, but it is in a community with family and friends we love, and it is in the town we call home!

I think God must really like us. *Big, warm, fuzzy smile here*

Seriously, though! What a circus this has been! So crazy!

Crazy, yes…but by far, has been the most amazing endeavor to date.

Amazing why, you ask? Allow me to explain:

It’s amazing, because as we trust… as we walk this ‘tightrope of Faith’, we believe that although it can be frightening, it will not only withstand the pressure of each step, but that it is leading us straight to a sturdy finish. And ultimately, when we get to the other side and take the blindfold off, we look back and realize we were going straight the whole time, and the platform of safety is right in front of us.

We are overwhelmed with feelings of security and excitement, yet as we step onto that secure platform, we turn around and suddenly become aware of the danger that eluded us. It causes you to shudder, whereas while in the middle of that rope, your determination to survive only allowed your focus to be on attaining the prize of security. It is only now that you allow yourself to look at how high up you were, and the incredible distance between that rope and the ground below. But you realize that the distance from one side to the other was only a short one, although walking it felt like miles. You are flooded with feelings of relief, assurance and comfort. And then suddenly, your emotional stupor is interrupted, and the thundering sound of applause breaks the silence in your mind. You hear the roar of the crowd celebrating your accomplishment! You look all around under the big top, and people of all ages are standing… cheering, and you are convinced at that moment that there is not one person under this big top who is as relieved as you are.

However, in my case, the roar of my crowd comes from my Father in heaven… my heart is full, and there is no desire to take a bow.

The desire is only to give one. To bow in awe of His infinite ability to get us from one side to the other, unscathed.

So, as you juggle your way through this life, remember that you do not have to be your own Ring Master.

Put your blindfold on, and step out…putting one foot in front of the other, and hold tight to the balance bar of grace.

One of the biggest blessings to come out of this, is that I have three little girls who have not only walked this out with us, but are now experiencing the fruit of their labor, and filled with a joy that is unspeakable. Every ounce of uncertainty and stress was worth the gift of assurance my girls were able to receive. They will be living directly across the street from their aunt and cousins, and just 7 houses down the road from Grandma. They will be less than 10 minutes away from church with the ability to participate and be a blessing to others through their gifts and abilities. They will be surrounded by friends and family, while still being close enough to visit the friends they are leaving behind.

Smack dab in the center of God’s goodness.

Oh, and by the way…guess who gets to come with us?

Yup, there’s even room for the boys…

So, what’s going on under your Big Top?

This post was linked to:

Wordful Wednesday at

(Appropriate post for this blog carnival, dontchathink?)

 

May Moving Madness~One Amazing Ride May 17, 2010

Filed under: Jesus rocks!,May Moving Madness! — Janine Chance @ 9:39 am

Please Keep Hands and Feet Inside the Ride at all Times!

You’ve all heard these words at one time or another while waiting for the ride of your life.

Well, sometimes the ‘rides of our lives’ can bring uncertainty. The things that make you go ‘hmmmm’…You know, the times when you had a few pieces of the puzzle, but couldn’t see the big picture because the missing pieces were vital to the completion of the final masterpiece? Okay, enough with the analogies. Let me just say…

Yup, I’m there.

We are moving in exactly 14 days. Exciting? Well, yeah….but it would be WAY more exciting if I actually knew where I was going. Ok, you can pick your chin off of the floor now…I don’t want you to drool in your keyboard and short it out.

What? How, you ask? How am I still able to smile and even laugh in the face of uncertainty?

I have faith in the One who knows best, so believe it or not, there is peace. Stress? Yeah, there’s that, too. Oxymoron? No…reality. My ear is sore from stretching it towards heaven, but my promise hasn’t changed a bit. The promise of provision, peace, grace, and mercy. Just like we have our children’s best interest in mind, He has our best lined up for us already.

Call me crazy, but God has never failed us, always taken care of us, and not a minute too late.

I know you may be thinking…’Two weeks!? That’s not a whole lot of time!’ You’re right. It’s not a lot of time…for me and you. But in my experience over the last 18 years of my life, two weeks is a lifetime for God. I’ve watched Him change the course of a situation in two minutes, so I can only dream of what can be accomplished in two weeks.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not sitting back eating Bon-Bons and watching a Pride and Prejudice marathon, but I’m also not killing myself to do this thing on my own. It wouldn’t be beneficial…not when I asked Him to be in charge. So, we wait…well, we pack, and we wait.

Then we get in, buckle up, hold on to the bar, keeping hands in the car at all times, securing our sunglasses under our legs so they don’t fly off of our heads and end up in the pile of belongings under the big loop… and wait, hearts pounding, with the anticipation of delight.

Emotions are natural…and God given. As long as we don’t allow them to define us, or be our decision makers, they can be beautiful and necessary.

Oh yeah…I think this is by far the most amazing ride yet.

 

Speechless… May 10, 2010


I decided to join this blog carnival that I found via The Miller Mix. I love reading Kelly’s writing, and today was no exception. Her post on ‘Courage’ was outstanding, so, I checked out Momalom.com and decided I wanted in.

Well, it wasn’t too difficult to come up with this post, because it was something that happened just the other day, and is so vivid in my mind…

I can’t type fast enough!

As you know, by reading previous posts, that we are moving in exactly 26 days. Yup, 26 DAYS! You would think that after living in 9 different homes in 13 and 1/2 years that it wouldn’t be a huge deal. You would think… However, it still can be pretty stressful. Not just the packing and unpacking. No…we’re talking the rental agreements, the signing and exchanging of the lease, having every little detail in writing so that everyone stays ‘friendly’, getting the utilities put in your name, ordering the cable and DSL package, or whatever will make computer life happy, the moving truck details, getting the right size boxes and having enough packing tape and sharpie pens so that when they go missing in a sea of newspaper and bubble wrap, it’s not the end of the world… changing my meal planning to paper plate menus and one pot meals, keeping out enough toys to keep the little ones happy, but packing enough to keep the living spaces sane….*breath taken here* Shall I go on? I didn’t think so. You get it.

So, after having most of these things taken care of, and I think I’m well on my way to success, my phone rings. It’s the real estate agent. He’s spoken to the home owner, and decides 26 days before the occupancy date, to drop this bomb:

Our cats are not allowed to occupy the home with us !

Our boys…who we have had for over 6 years, are not allowed!! Now, this is after a full 6 months of searching for that perfect home….in our price range…with the right amount of space for a home-schooling family of five (with incredible references including a husband who can build or fix anything on the property, mind you) and one who allowed pets. Well, the last part was obviously a mis-communication.

My heart sunk to the middle of my stomach.

WE HAVE THREE WEEKS UNTIL MOVING DAY!!!

I REPEAT….

THREE WEEKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Come on man! They are fat, lazy, de-clawed cats who delight in getting an ice-cube from the ice maker a few times a day for entertainment!

How much damage could they possibly do?!

Immediately I begin to panic. Now, mind you, I am not the panicky type. Emotional, outspoken and very out-going, yes, but I usually handle stress fairly well. But being completely honest, I think my coping tank was on ‘E’ at this point and I couldn’t take one more situation that was going to force me into hard-core ‘faith mode’. Do I trust God? Yes. Am I human? You bet I am. So, as fast as my little fingers could go, I began to research. More rentals, more dead ends. More phone calls, more answering machines. I had tears in my eyes, and a lump in my throat as I listened to my three precious girls behind me, playing in the background, laughing, without a clue as to what was happening.

My oldest daughter, still laughing from whatever silly conversation they were all having, stopped dead in her tracks once she caught a glimpse of my face. There was no faking this one. She slowly sauntered over to me, her long legs moving so slow I felt as if the whole room had stood still.

With her eyebrows raised in concern and her thin little lips pursed, she quietly asked, “Mom…what’s wrong?”

That’s all it took. I burst into tears (no thanks to my premenstrual condition), looked at her and spilled it.

By this time, the other two girls had come over, speechless. Mommy is not only losing it, but she’s crying? That can’t be good!

Here I was, the one who had been spouting out declarations of faith, and trust in God, and confidence in our decision to make this crazy move,

now crying like a baby and displaying more fear in a matter of moments than I had the last 6 months!

(I know, you’re thinking, wasn’t this supposed to be a post about courage? I’m getting to it.)

She looked at me, put both of her sweet dainty little hands on my knotted-up shoulders and simply said, “Mom…you don’t have to worry about it.”

Still unmoved by her sweet voice, I continued on in my rant, “Yes! Yes I DO!

Either we have to find another place to live, or we have to find a home for the boys! What am I going to do!?”

I couldn’t believe those words were actually coming out of my mouth! What an idiot! Great job, Mom! Way to go!

‘And the award for the worst mom goes to……..’

I can hear it now!

But before God would allow my pity party to continue any longer, my brave, courageous, beautiful, strong 12-year-old grabbed my knotted-up shoulders even more firmly, stared straight into my distraught, tear-filled eyes, and with a still, small voice said,

“No Mom. You don’t. What have you been saying to us? Not only for the last few months, but for as long as I can remember? God has it. He always had, and He always will. Every detail, right? You’ve always said, ‘Do not worry about tomorrow…it has enough trouble of its own’, right?”

I stared at her as if our ages had transferred in a matter of minutes, just nodding my head.

“Well then,” she continued “there’s nothing to do but pray, and wait…and get off of that computer. You need a break!”

What could I say? I was speechless! It was perfect! She couldn’t have rebuked me any more loving or respectful that that! Absolutely spot on!!!

I looked at my girl, my heart swelling with more love, mommy pride and peace than ever, and just said,

“You’re absolutely right, baby….absolutely right.”

She had diffused every ounce of worry my heart had previously housed in a matter of seconds!

‘What a slacker!’ I thought to myself…but before I could run away with that thought and once again, try to make it all about me’,

I was reminded of this:

No, it’s because of all of the times I didn’t slack. All the times that my husband and I did share with them

our faith in the One who is bigger than any problem or circumstance,

and our courage of belief that enabled this brave moment to come to pass.

God showed up and allowed her the opportunity to lay her faith on the table and challenge mine.

It was powerful!

One thing that has definitely changed since that day is the respect I have for my oldest daughter.

I have always respected her, don’t get me wrong. But she showed a courage, a wisdom and strength beyond her years that particular day.

I am so thankful that in my weakness, she displayed her strength, and that I, in turn, had the courage to receive it.

“Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say,

in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.”

I Timothy 4:12, NLT

For more awesome stories about courage, other fun topics, and to join in on the fun, visit www.momalom.com.

 

Dip, Drool, Drizzle and Giggle! May 8, 2010


Today is our Mother-Daughter Banquet at church. I certainly have the whole ‘mother and daughter’ part of this shindig covered, wouldn’t you say? The church asked my Mom-in-Law (who is a pastor) to speak. My oldest daughter will be playing the guitar, my middle daughter will be on the drums, I will be singing, and of course,my little one will be greeting people at the door. Pretty awesome, huh? Talk about a family affair! My hubby is the pastor, but he’s not invited.¬† No boys allowed!

Anyway, I went shopping yesterday afternoon for the decorations and such, then went to the church to set it all up. I took Gracie and Monkey with me to help (my middle and youngest.) It’s a good thing, too, or I’d have been there forever! They were such a huge help…(although I did allow them the choice to either keep their punishment from earlier and go to bed early, or come help me set up. Of course, they chose to help. Smart girls! Who am I kidding…smart mommy! I was outta there in like half the time!)

Afterwards, I came home and started on my ‘dessert offering’ for the banquet. I was also going to make my ‘meal offering’ which was my rockin’ chicken salad on croissants, (to be posted next week) but it was already quarter to eleven. Oops. Oh well, late night again! As I started to set up, all three of my girls came into the kitchen, washed their hands and turned to me with a smile. Now, it’s certainly not routine for my children to be awake and ready to go at eleven o’clock at night, much less me being ready to begin a project like this at that time, but looking at the amount of work¬† ahead of me, I smiled back and set up their stations. My little sous chefs were ready to party!

OOOHH! Chocolate covered strawberries drizzled with white chocolate!

(I think the inevitable ‘chef’s snack’ as I call it, was definitely an incentive!)

Don’t they look yummy? I am definitely not a big fan of chocolate, but even I get excited about these!

I know, I know…you’re thinking “She’s nuts! Not a big fan of chocolate?!”

Nope…I don’t really get into sweets all that much.

However, I can be a sucker for Starburst and the most hard-core sour candy you can dish out from time to time!

How am I doin’ Mom?

I think she said, “I can’t wait until tomorrow…” like a hundred times!

Oh yeah, I think my help is fading….she’s using her non-dipping arm to hold her head up!

I think I lost the two younger ones around 11:45…and my oldest bailed about a half hour later.

I know it’s late, but we had fun, and it was a Friday night. They can sleep in.

We dipped. We drooled. We drizzled…and we definitely giggled.

Another fun memory for the “Remember that time we…” box.

Here’s the finished product in the fridge ready for the banquet:

Voila!

Good thing I took this picture…I’ll use it as evidence if there are any missing strawberries when I take them out for the banquet in the morning…

Hmmmm we’ll see……?

Happy Saturday!

 

Just for You… May 2, 2010

Filed under: Happy Blessed Sunday To Ya'!,Jesus rocks! — Janine Chance @ 12:00 pm

Here’s a thought for you on this Sunday afternoon…

If God had a refrigerator,

Your picture would be on it.

If He had a wallet,
your photo would be in
it.


He sends you flowers
every spring.

He sends you a sunrise
every morning.

Face it, friend –

He is crazy about you!

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Happy Easter April 4, 2010

Filed under: Jesus rocks! — Janine Chance @ 4:00 am