Friday, July 29, 2011

Thought For The Day.

So when I go to work and I hear this news:

A certain employee worked on Monday, went home to her mother and two children. Her ex-boyfriend showed up with a gun and shot and killed both women in front of the children. The two year old, who was the child of the shooter, was held by the grandmother when she was shot. The older child took the toddler and ran to the neighbor's house and they were unharmed. Incidentally, the older child had witness his father's death two years earlier.

I decide I have nothing to complain about today.

Please pray for these precious children.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Bright Side

Bad news has a way of paralyzing me. I avoid it whenever possible. I also have unreasonably high expectiations that neither I nor anyone else can achieve. Because of these two traits, I am up and down throughout the day. That's why I like God. He says he has promised to take care of me, that I don't need to worry about anything. (Matthew 6:19-34)

Is faith it a crutch? Is it just something nice to believe in so we can keep going? I've asked myself these questions many times. My answer is it's not a crutch, it's more like an electric wheelchair, and I would never be this passionate about simply thinking happy thoughts.

Seeing isn't always believing. That makes it a little harder.

Faith is, to me, is a choice of what to believe. It's a matter of perspective and priorities. If my priority is me, I'll be depressed because I'll never be pleased. Self centerness is a horrible epidemic that I have been swept in to many times. It never satisfies self.

In this world, there are good things and bad things. Many people focus on the bad because it seems to bring attention to itself. The news, for instance, is mostly bad. The workplace is a breeding ground for complaining and negativity. Marriage mixed with selfishness always produces grumblings. Somehow we think that the bad overshadows the good and we dwell on it.

What if we flipped that? What if the good was a bright light that outshown the bad? What if, instead of letting the negative diminish the positive we put prioity on the good? One of my favorite hymns says, "Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face, and the things on earth will grow stragely dim in the light of His glory and grace."

What if the decline of overall satisfaction and the rise of fear has to do with dwelling on it? Are we generally more unsatisfied with our political leaders simply because we know everything about them? Do we lack heros because we dig for everyone's downfalls?

What if the "things on earth" are just a part of the picture? What if there are forces we cannot see? What if all that we complain about and fear is just a tiny speck of rock in a mountain of gems? I believe it is.

What if great and mighty things are happening in the physical that we don't know about? What if the good news is being filtered out of the information bombarding us? I am sure of this.

That is why I don't think that being optomistic is not an escape from reality. I think our reality is clear in God's word, which says, " in this world, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world." John 16:33

Positive attitudes are rather a weapon to battle through the sorrows. I am NOT saying I always feel like smiling. However, I do always have a word I can grab on to in order to catch a glimpse of the unseen gems. Dear God, show me the gems.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Spreading The Love

I currently have four girls in the house- 5,6,7, and 8. One word. Drama.

This morning after an epic showdown, Savannah and I had a discussions about self control. She asked, " WHY do I always make the bad choice?"

So we talked about what we could do when we start to get angry.
1. Recognize that Satan wants you to get angry and hit. Don't listen to him.
2. God is love. Say it over and over until you can be like God, use his love to love instead of hurt.

After lunch, I sent Savannah downstairs to fold laundry because she needed to separate herself from everyone again. She reacted in anger at first, but when I went down the stairs I saw a pillowcase with something in it and a note.

"Dear whoever saw this note,
Open the present behind me. If it is a basketball, play with it in the park.
Love you, From Savannah."
It made me smile.

One angry response seems to upset the whole house...maybe one loving response can repair it?

That's what we are working on today.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Faith Project

In Target a few weeks ago, a book called "Happiness Project" caught my eye. I did not buy it and I have not read it. I've just read the cover which would obviously not be enough information for a good critique. But what I gathered from the cover was this author spent a year doing things like singing in the morning, reading Aristotle, cleaning closets, and having more fun in order to being happy.

If I have some time, I may read it out of curiosity. I'm sure I'd learn something from it.

But the thing is that I've tried some of these things, and what I've found is that in the effort to "be happy" comes more work and more opportunity for disappointment. I have, at times, been inspired to plant more flowers, which results in half of them dying. You see, more flowers equals more work and I already don't have the time to maintain what I do have so why would I be able to handle one more bed of flowers?

On the other hand, the ones that do manage to live I enjoy thoroughly.

How about having more fun? If I make it a goal to have more fun, it becomes work for me. Then it really isn't fun and if I do not have more fun after making the goal to have more fun, I am very frustrated.

..............And don't even get me started on cleaning.

I don't know if this is realistic to everyone or if it's just because I am a discouraged perfectionist. My conclusion is that working at being happy does not make me happy. And although one of my biggest pet peeves is when a christian takes a popular secular item and makes a more "spiritual" version, I am pleading not guilty since I'm not selling anything. I'm just a mom writing down what my thoughts were in Target.

For over a year now, I have had my own "Faith Project" (which I started before learning about this book by the way). And only now do I feel as though my heart is ready for phase one, which is: forgetting what I see or feel and to make God's promises which are in His word a reality. This also includes refraining from manipulating my circumstances but simply listening to what God tells me through my spirit and doing it.

I can't tell you a whole lot about this now since I've only begun. I'm only depending on the promise that God is truth whether I see my prayers answered physically or not. So no big wonderful testimony yet. Except that if one were to look at my current circumstances they may not see anything to praise God for, but that is what I have in my heart. Anticipation, joy, peace, more love, more grace, more confidence, and....more happiness. Not to say fear does not try to creep in. But God's word says, "I do not have the spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind." So I repeat it often. Praise God.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Get up to take a shower. Check.

Help my girls make breakfast. Check.

Dress Max. Check.

Go to the ATM. Check.

Break my 20. With Coffee. Check.

Attend and enjoy Bible study. Check.

Pick up Chinese food. Check.

Lunch. Check.

Mandate quiet time. Check.

Go to the pool. Check.

Leave early due to bad behavior. Check.

Discipline, witness repentance, gave hugs. Check.

Helped Brooke make snack/supper. Check.

Put a load of laundry in to soak. Check.

Washed a load of dishes. Check.

Played a conversation game I learned about in my "Bringing up Girls" study. Check.

Took the four girls to VBS. Check.

Took Max to Hobby Lobby for tomorrow's art project. Check.

Forgot to stop at the quick shop for a sucker and Pepsi. Drove by the house and went back. Check.

Managed to see Daddy for 10 minutes before he left for the night. Check.

Picked the girls up from VBS. Check.

Started the laundry cycle. Check.

Gave a snack, blessed each child, read books, tucked them in, tucked them in again. Check.

Called Mom. Check.

Blogged. Soon to check.

10,000 things left to do, yet every minute had meaning.

Moms, don't underestimate your daily accomplishments.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


I'm calm now.

Earlier, I was a flood of emotions- mostly joy. Whether it be from hormones or circumstances or divine thought processing, I was about to burst. And I did on my way home from church as my children loudly sang, "I trust in Jesus, my great deliverer, my strong defender, Son of God" . Tears fell with one hand raised. Savannah was saying, "you're weird" with her look. I had to laugh.

My niece, Ellie, moved from our house to my Mom and Dad's last Christmas and now is back for a week and a half. I really missed her but didn't realize how much. My love for her is as my own children, and is the primary motivation for moving back to where I grew up, a place I never thought I'd be.

I am excited to move close so we can learn together once again, to go on trips, to practice cartwheels, to play basketball, and make so many more memories together. My excitement is somewhat hindered, though, by my past I so desperately wanted to forget. I found who I was little by little after leaving that town. And though I still love the people there, I am haunted by scars I once carried, and I will not be forced to fit in any one's box.

These scars are trying to reopen with every attempt people make to question my decision to home school. They may not be questioning me directly, but if it weren't for my relentless pursuit to home school my niece, she would be taking a very different path right now. So I have tried to think of a proper response if and when I am confronted again. I don't wish to hold on to grudges or build walls. I just want the freedom to do that which I feel is best for my family.

The reasons are endless, but first and foremost this sums it up:

1. I went to that school, and don't wish that on my family. If something didn't work for me, why would I do the same thing for them? I also don't wish to revisit my past by repeatedly entering those walls.

2. (Most) every time I look at each of those children, I wish for more time with them. I wonder where the time has gone and wish it would slow down a little so they wouldn't grow so fast. I want to spend time with them every day. I want to watch them understand concepts, draw pictures, and reenact stories. I want to be the one to take them to the zoo and blaze the trail with them. I want to be in on their jokes, make cinnamon rolls together, and experiment over and over again. I want to be the one they talk to about their fears and sadness. My heart would break if I gave that responsibility to one that didn't know how sensitive Summer is or who didn't appreciate Savannah's curious nature. I just don't want them to leave.

3. For the most part, I am in awe of what successful home school families accomplish. There is a negative stereotype, but people just need to get over it. I attended a two week camp after my freshman year of college which happened to be before public school had ended, and therefore most of the attendees were home schooled. I was blown away. My best friend there was a year younger than I was and was in her junior year in college, pursuing a degree in pre-law. She was absolutely beautiful but what caught my attention was how sweet she was and so easy to talk to. She was not awkward socially or physically, as were most of the others there. These were real people, not trying to show anyone up or fit in. Real, intelligent, people.

4. Growing up, I knew the Bible well and I knew how to be a good person. I did not know, however, to live like a Christian. I didn't live like I really believed. I want to instill true Christian values in my kids. For instance, loving everyone- not tearing them down. Not judging. Trusting always. Never worrying. Praying constantly.  If I had known how to live like a follower of Christ, I wouldn't have had self condemnation or tried to prove myself to anyone. That is what I wish for my children, when they are 18, not 34.

5. I had no intention to home school until one morning in MOPS when I heard one mother talk and I just knew. Before I got all of the kids out of the car, I was telling Sook about it. There was no doubt in his support. I can't imagine life any other way. This is what God has told us to do, and if you disagree, then you are disagreeing with God. And that brings me to my last point.

6. I won't tell anyone what to do with their kids, so please don't offer unsolicited opinions to us. This is a very personal decision and has been thought through very carefully. There are things I don't wish to share with just any advice-giver to justify my position, but I can assure you, I know what I'm doing. Don't assume my kids' quirks are due to home school. Other kids have quirks too. They are just being kids. They DO attend a school, a private one, and it is perfectly legal. They ARE learning, and they are happy.

There you go. Even if you didn't get through this long, long post, I will have written out my thoughts. I wish to get along with everyone, to belong to a community, to enjoy to positive benefits of a small town filled with wonderful people. However, my priority is not always to be polite. It is, instead, always for the well being of my children.


Friday, July 15, 2011

Back To Two

The older two were gone this week.

I have loved the time with Max and Brooke. And missed the others terribly.

Isn't it interesting how you learn something about your children when perspectives or environments change?

I wish I could give each of them my undivided attention more, yet I don't want any less. Maybe even more.

Funny how Mamas think.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Conviction Alert

Moms, we are so surrounded by the "me" mentality and I'm afraid we're on the wrong track. Some of us are as whiny as the two year olds we're too lazy to discipline.

Sorry, that was my conviction but it probably applies to others as well. I know I'm not that exceptional.

A good mom is incredibly strong in spirit, stubborn in her convictions, a force one will only challenge temporarily. She fears very little and is in control of her emotions at all times. Her children respect her soft spoken voice and crave her warm hugs because of her authority. Her husband is confident in his children and household because she takes responsibility.

It sounds unfair, doesn't it? According to my conviction, we have two choices. We can gripe about our responsibilities, our children, and our husbands. We can whine, making us weaker, falling into a pit of self pity, starting a chain reaction of miserable behavior for the rest of the family. We make our husbands feel guilty and like failures, causing confusion with our mysterious emotions, and our children insecure with every mood. Then they react negatively since they are the CHILDREN who don't know how to process their emotions alone and make our day exponentially worse.

The second choice is to fight like mad to stay warm, happy, and responsible. Like mad. Never give up. Fight any negative action or word that enters into her household, whether we are the ones that produced it or not. Guard our walls from anger, jealousy, fear, and failure in order to produce a refuge inside. Hold on to our faith as if our lives depend on it. Detect all unfruitful items and clean until spotless. Then we will rest in the delight of our labor and instill confidence and joy inside each member of the house.

Inspect all of our ideals and beliefs to make sure they are of truth. If it doesn't feel right, find out why. Know our shortcomings and face them head on. Speak daily to God and be prepared to accept conviction and take action. Be prepared to know how much God loves us and that he takes so much interest in our households that he is willing to touch a nerve and not apologize for it. Be prepared for God to show us how to reach our dreams since He is the one that made us and gave us our dreams.

Be prepared to succeed. As mothers, I believe this is our challenge. If you may be one in the future, please, please, please count the cost first. Once you have started, it is your job to finish and it is not an easy task.

I have not perfected this and I have found that once I dig in my heels and vow to fight I am attacked head on. It's easy to give up and go back to whining...but what honor is in that? Mom- your job is important. Failure is not an option. Perfection is not required. Faith in God's promises are a must.

This is my conviction that I share with you.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

In The Siyajuck House

A made a smoothie an hour ago. I finally just ate it.

It's hot. Too hot to boil my water because of the water main break. Not too hot for coffee, though.

Apparently "picking up the basement" means moving all the toys to the bedroom.

This is our pool. Hours of entertainment. Why is it on top of the trampoline? I don't know. I thought it was clever, though!

Summer in the summertime.

Savannah picked out hair clips. Her favorite is green and has flowers and feather on it! No one else would wear the pink one it so I put it on. Staining the deck has never been so fancy.

Rule for this summer: Grill anything. Last night? Quesadillas!

File:Eyed Click Beetle Alaus oculatus 056428.jpg
I saw my first eyed click beetle yesterday on the deck. I was so excited, I ran inside to find something to trap it so we could all examine in it. My hero husband translated my excitement as fear and killed it for me while I was inside, knocking it into my ground cover below. Oh well.

Savannah proudly told me that she locked a fly in the refrigerator so it would freeze to death. Nice.

I would take the kids to the pool but the key is lost in the garage somewhere which is forbidden to enter due to mold remediation.

It's too hot to move outside, I have mold, no vacation, and plenty of laundry to do. BUT I will rejoice in the LORD! My joy is from Him, and His blessings are unending!