Saturday, October 31, 2009

A Better Day

Today was a much better day at the Little Blue Cottage. We all worked on the house together. Then in the evening we got ready to go to the family Halloween party at my brother's house and celebrate Grandpa's birthday. The boys and I got dressed up in our costumes (as seen above). I remember last year this time I was feeling so sick after the reconnection of my bowel and having had the ileus that I did not dress up or go to the party. This year I was healthy enough to have fun with my boys and for that I praise God.

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Good, Bad and the Ugly

Okay, one of the best parts of my day was meeting my new physical therapist. I really like her! She set me at ease right away and I actually feel excited about working with her. She did an evaluation today. I am going to be seeing her once a week for the next two months. I am hopeful that this will help me get past the issues I have with my tummy.

As far as our progress toward putting the house up for sale, well it was not a very good day for that, but that's okay. The boys had the day off from school. Mark decided to stay home from work to try and get some work done on the house and employ the boys in his efforts. He also was not feeling well and so was a tad grumpy. We have not been seeing eye to eye on some issues. He has put so much pressure on himself to get the house on the market. Anyway, words were said. After I made lunch for him and we prayed, he softened up a bit. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A Calm Day

Today I woke up with a cold so I did not do any heavy work. My cold is pretty light compared with that flu I had, even so I had to take a couple of naps. I took some pictures and thought I would share them with you all. Above is one of my kitty Dusty in our sunroom looking out at a beautiful fall day here in Southern California.

Here is my "Autumn Time" basket. I finally got it out from storage. Brandon commented how it made him feel warm and cozy.

I've been going through all our stuff here at the cottage. Years of memories. Maybe these look sort of disgusting, considering that it is very old Play-doh. These are jars that Eric made when he was little. As you might guess I am a sentimental pack rat. Oh well, one is a tomato and the other almost resembles a green pepper. I took a picture of them just in case I decide that it is time to toss them.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Feeling Topsy Turvy

Hello everyone, thank you so much for your prayers on our behalf!! I am very blessed by your caring comments.

I have been working hard the past two days, going through things, cleaning and making repairs. Also trying to keep up with the daily chores and errands. I am overwhelmed. Mark called our realtor and had him come by the house Monday night. Mark has ants in his pants and wanted to sign papers to list the house. The realtor asked how long we wanted to wait before going public with our listing. I said two weeks, but Mark said 1 week! Sigh. After the realtor left I was pretty upset, but amazingly my stomach calmed down. That sure was a welcome relief! Tonight it is back to hurting, but not as bad as it was.

This morning the termite man came by for an inspection. Thankfully, there is only a little problem and easily taken care of. Whew! Out of the blue, Mark applied for a job here in California today. He says he does not expect much to come of it. Still, he did it! Oh, and his Mom had knee replacement surgery on Monday. Mark has been worried about her.

After school today Brandon told me that his gym shorts were stolen. Sigh. Eric has come down with a cold, which Brandon and I are coming down with it tonight. I heard that it is going around at the school. If it gets bad, I would like Mark to postpone the listing going public till we get better.

I am listening to the train whistle blowing and the engine chugging along. The winds have picked up and I can hear my windchimes chiming every so often. The air is chilly tonight and I have a cup of hot tea waiting for me. I bid you a good night and blessings to all!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Been Working & Havin Tummy Aches

Hello all, went to a birthday party for my two nieces on Saturday. I do not know how my sister managed it, but both her girls were born in October. We went skating at the roller rink and then had lunch with cake afterward. Everyone had a wonderful time, but talking about our upcoming move was sad. The reality of leaving family behind is heartbreaking.

This afternoon I was reading on a website about staging a house to sell. I got some good tips. It said to disassociate myself with my house. So the Little Blue Cottage is no longer my home it is just a house. Sniff. But the Lord gave me this verse, Psalm 119:37 "Turn away my eyes from looking at worthless things, and revive me in Your way." This verse really spoke to me. After all, my beloved cottage is just an earthly dwelling. The Lord is seeking to loosen my grip on earthly things causing me to grow closer to Him. Thinking on this, I realize this is a pretty awesome thing! Okay, back to the tips, I have to de-personalize, which means taking down family photos. Then I have to de-clutter to create a sense of spaciousness. We are also making some small repairs right now. Here below is a picture of my powder room this past spring and then a current one.

This is the powder room with a wallpaper border.

And this is the powder room now with the border ripped off and patching. The border was peeling away in spots. I am going to paint where the border was and then paint the base board white. I am hoping that this bit of work will help my tiny powder room feel more spacious.

I hear my wind chimes ringing; that means the Santa Ana winds are blowing. I checked the weather in Denver, Colorado; they are expecting snow showers. Having lived in California all my life I don't know what snow showers are. Will I prefer snow showers to Santa Ana Winds? Hmm. In other news my tummy has been acting up real bad. It is not fun to eat right now. I only had two meals today and they were not that big. I hate it when it gets like this! We will see what the physical therapist says this coming Friday.

Friday, October 23, 2009

My Sons

This is my favorite picture on a Christmas morning. Hello all, for some reason I feel compelled to write about my sons. I have attempted to write about parenting my boys a few times before, only to delete the post. When I could not have children of my own I turned to adoption. Mark and I prayed and we both felt strongly lead to adopt from the county Social Services Agency that I had worked for. One of my jobs was to type the roster for the children's home and I even visited it a few times. Children in the county system have issues; some are born addicted to drugs, some have behavior issues, and others have development problems, etc.

Mark and I went through training to be foster parents and waited for a match. However, nothing can fully prepare you for what you are getting in to. Our day finally came and we received two special needs children into our home. Both of our boys have RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder) which is no piece of cake to deal with. I knew I did not have what it takes to parent these boys and told the Lord so. It was in obedience to Him that I stepped out and told the social worker I would adopt them.

The thing about RAD children is they are defiant regardless of consequences. They can easily take on the victim role. This makes parenting difficult. Have you held a small child in your arms only to have them spit in your face? Or kick you in the back of your head? Even so, the Lord blessed me and I have develop an attachment with both of my boys. My parenting is backwards from normal though. RAD children tend to be destructive to themselves. As a result I have given my children good things regardless of their behavior. I know this sounds very odd, but I tell them that I am doing it because I love them. It is based on me, not on them. I let them know they do not deserve it because of their behavior, but because I love them. This has healed some wounds.

We knew of another couple that took in a foster girl with RAD and wanted to adopt her. They loved her and worked with her. They took the opposite parenting technique from us. Discipline was heavy at their house. They said they were standing on God's principles and the child needed to conform. The girl never saw the point of it and she felt victimized and unloved. The relationship grew hostile, till one day the girl ran away. She was picked up by Social Services and she told her social worker that she did not want to return to her foster parents. She said they were mean and she hated them. The couple was heart broken. They repeatedly tried to re-establish contact with her, but the girl refused it.

My boys are good boys, they do not smoke, drink or do drugs. They do not slip out at night. We are blessed that they actually enjoy spending time with us. Often times I get discouraged, hurt, impatient, or worn down by their defiant behaviors as any normal parent does. When I do I try to think about the Lord and how He has been so loving and kind to me even when I have not responded the way I should. This helps me to continue to pursue patience with my sons. There are times when my sons do obey my direction and these are huge accomplishments, but then they backslide and ground must be regained. Some areas are untouchable it seems, behaviors are not easily parted with and remain a Rubik's cube.

When I had my near death experience in 2007, the Lord made it very clear to me that I was healed from sepsis to continue on with my work with the sons He gave me. I was impressed with the knowledge that the Lord deems my work important. So I continue to be here for my sons as the Lord has directed. Rebels that they are, I encourage them to rebel for the right reasons not the wrong ones. If you feel led of the Lord, please say a prayer for my sons, that they would give their full heart to Jesus and trust Him. Thank you!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Our Visit With the Realtor

Our real estate agent is a very nice man, however, he did not have good news for us. There are a lot of foreclosures and short sales in our area. Many of these homes have sold for low prices thus bringing down what we can get for our house. Granted, most of the houses that are selling are not in good shape or just a shell. We have some cosmetic repairs, but our house is in good shape and so he is thinking we can ask a bit more for it. There is just no telling which way the market is going to go.

We talked with him for 2 1/2 hours. At one point while talking about our situation tears came to my eyes. Basically, we are going to lose everything. At best we will walk away owing nothing. There is also the possibility that we will have to walk away owing some money thus draining our savings. Or take a ding to our credit by entering into a short sale. It is time for us to walk by faith not by sight. We definitely need prayer!!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A Touch of Autumn

Please visit Hopes & Dreams for some encouragement.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Another Day

Last night I prayed over my kitty. This morning I woke up to find that kitty's eyes are not watery anymore. She still has a little sneezing though. Then I noticed my other kitty, Dusty, sneezed. Oh no! I called the vet and let them know and they prescribed medicine. Right now they have stopped sneezing, so I am going to keep an eye on both of them. If things take a turn then I will go ahead with the antibiotic.

I did a lot yesterday, I guess a little too much. Some of my symptoms from the flu are plaguing me again. Blend in my tummy issues and a bit of irritability and you have the whole picture. Even so I ran my errands.

This evening Mark came home from work and announced that the real estate agent is coming to our house on Thursday evening. We may have a for sale sign up before long.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Reality Check

Okay, I will be honest and say that I have been a bit depressed with moving weighing on my mind. Recently I spoke with a couple of family members and found that I am going to be missed more than I originally believed, which makes me even more sad to have to leave. Then I got an even bigger reality check when Mark came home for lunch today. He told me that the moving company contacted him at work. They told him that he needs to contact them 3 weeks before we are set to move. They need to come and take stock of all our belongings. Then just before we leave they will pack everything for us and move it. After telling me that, Mark asked me for the phone number of our neighborhood real estate agent. I gave it to him with a sad look on my face. He called and left a message. The last reality check of the day was when Mark came home in the evening with booklets, maps, etc. about the area of Denver we are planning on settling in. I read some of the material and got a good feeling, but something in me keeps yelling "No, I don't want to go!".

In other news, our kitty, Princess, has recovered from her shots, but now her respiratory disease is acting up again. She is sneezing a lot and her eyes are watery. I hate to see her struggling so much especially since she had been feeling so good after finishing her prescription of antibiotic. Princess may be old and skinny, but I'm telling you, the girl still has spunk! I am going to have to take her in to see the vet again and I know she isn't going to like it one bit.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Boys Are Home

It was nice to have some peace and quiet over the weekend; even so, Mark and I are happy to have our boys home again. They had a great time at camp, but were happy to be home. When we came to pick them up at the church they happily came to greet us and they gave me hugs. After they got all their gear put away we piled in the car and went to In & Out Burger. At home the boys got showers and presented me with their dirty laundry. After that we all relaxed and took naps as needed. In between napping and doing chores the boys and I worked on this jigsaw puzzle above. A few years ago I started a tradition of working on jigsaw puzzles. I start one either in the summer and/or autumn. As you can see this puzzle is almost done.

In other news my tummy has been acting up with pain again. I have been uncomfortable and irritable today. I finally got an appointment to begin physical therapy on Oct. 30th. We will see if that does anything. The way I feel today, I don't think it is going to help much, but I pray it does.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Day Off

Mark and I sent the boys to camp this weekend. They are camping in the desert with their Boy Scout troop. Usually Mark goes to camp with them, but this time he decided to stay home. Mark and I are having a day off from parenting and it feels wonderful! LOL

We went out to lunch and then we drove down the coast. Unfortunately, we did not get a good look at the ocean due to fog. Still, it was wonderful to just drive down the coast and enjoy the fog. It was beautiful. I am so going to miss the ocean when we finally move to Colorado. We enjoyed shopping at an outlet mall and I found a pair of boots that I can wear in the snow. That will come in handy while in Colorado. After shopping we drove toward home and I fell asleep in the car. Before going home we stopped for a yummy dinner. It has been a heavenly day!

The boys got 1st quarter grade cards on Thursday. I found it strange that not all the teachers reported. Whatever, Eric's grade card was not good. Along with his grades came a letter letting him know that he is in danger of getting kicked out of the school (because he is an out of district transfer). Eric has till the end of the semester to bring his grades up. Brandon's grade card was better than his brother's, but he has some improvements to make. Anyway, both boys have been lazy and trying to get away with not doing their work. Eric told me that he thought he could scoot by, but not at this school, they are tough. I have had to trust the Lord about the school change and I think I am seeing why they needed the change. There are lots of lessons they are learning.

This week we took our kitties in for their bath. Princess was due for her vaccines so when she got her bath they also gave her shots. She is older and just got over a respiratory infection. Well, she had a reaction to the shots and poor kitty came home feeling horrible. The next day I had to take her in again and let them know. They gave her some medicine to help her. She is feeling a little better today, so I am thankful for that, but I am still keeping my eye on her. Princess used to be someone's kitty, but was abandoned. It's been 5 years since we found her at the elementary school all skinny and sickly. Poor kitty has had some hard knocks in her life. Even so, she is so sweet.

Please visit my Hopes & Dreams blog for my recent thoughts on my future move to Colorado.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Raindrop Roses

It rained steady all night and I woke up to a wonderland of crystal studded roses. I like how some of the roses gently bow their heads as if they are praying.

I had been resting as much as possible and felt quite good yesterday. I decided to use my energy to do a bit of cleaning which I guess was not the right thing to do as I am feeling unwell again. This flu has weakened my body so much that I am having a hard time regaining my strength. The only thing I can do is rest, which day after day can be hard. Sometimes I just want to get out of the house.

Tuesday nights the guys go to Boy Scouts. I decided to slip out to a movie. I adore seeing a movie by myself and I've been wanting to see the movie Bright Star (which is rated PG). It is based on the life of the poet John Keats and his romance with Fanny Brawne. I thought the movie was beautiful. The cinematography was gorgeous, the costumes, especially the dresses of Fanny were beautiful and of course the poetry quoted was romantic. However it was a very tragic romance! At the end tears flooded my eyes and spilled over in a rush. Coming away I felt a bit depressed, but I think it is worth seeing for the beauty. Coming soon will be a movie about the young Queen Victoria and her romance with her husband. I am looking forward to seeing it as it is also rated PG.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Had to Rest

I over did things on Friday, too much too soon. With me still not being over the remains of the flu, I just don't have my spunk back. Friday, I forced myself to change my bed covers and move in my new nightstand. That involved a lot of work and I got a horrible backache in the evening. At the end of the day it was very nice to crawl into a clean bed, but I was so overtired that I felt horrible. So this morning I made the decision to rest.

This is a picture I took last weekend, after my fever broke. I had not been outside for a couple of days so I went in the backyard to enjoy the cool blustery autumn day. I remember wishing I was well so I could cook a meal for my men. Today, I did some cooking, but my skills were not in top form. I did alright with lunch, but dinner, well, it could have been better. The veggie stew came out fine, but my biscuits were a bit over baked. For dessert we had burned pumpkin pie. Even so my men were happy campers.

My mother in-law called today. My father in-law finished up his last treatment for his cancer. They are coming by to visit on Sunday before heading for home. They are going to return some dishes that I lent them to use at their rental home. I am hoping they won't mind a messy house. I haven't felt like getting things in complete order. At least the boys got the lawn mowed front & back and the car washed. That helps. And Eric helped me put up my some of my autumn decorations on the porch and in the garden. I still have more decorations to put up in the house, but haven't gotten to that yet. Oh, and my flowerbeds need work, but that will have to wait.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Girl Time

Here below are some pictures I took a while back, intending to use them in a post, but never got around to it due to the flu. I am still not 100% yet. Thinking about it, I am never 100%...LOL. I think I can manage an 85% with this body. Anyway, don't these pictures make you think of girl time?

I've read the All You magazine and it has a peanut butter cookie recipe in it that I want to try. I was going to make them last week and actually softened the butter for the recipe, but came down with a fever. The Southern Lady magazine has very pretty pictures and has some nice articles. I have not gotten to the Better Homes & Gardens one yet. I've been waiting for the right moment.

As you can see, I love polish. I need to give myself a pedicure real bad. I started one before I got sick. I had my old polish removed, toes clipped, nails oiled, etc. I just never got the polish on. Now it has been so long that I have to begin again, but that is okay I need the pampering.

The other day I treated myself to lunch with hubby and some shopping. I decided to let myself have an afternoon off. Today I worked very hard. With moving on my mind I am thinking about getting the house in shape to sell. Let me tell you, it is an overwhelming thought. There is 18 years worth of living in this house and that is not going to be easy to wade through. It is times like these when worldly possessions become a burden. Makes me remember when Jesus said, "One's life does not consist in the abundance of things he possess." (Luke 12:15). We definitely are going to be working on lightening our load as much as we can. And there is cosmetic work that needs to be done, thus a trip to Lowe's to pick up some paint chips. I've got my colors picked out, just waiting on my body to get a little stronger.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Distraction #2

Pictures of Colorado in the Crested Butte area.

This morning I had to pick up a long time friend of my boys and take him to school. I have been around many of the boys' friends since they were little. I have watched them grow up right along with my boys. It has been a blessing to be able to be there for these boys. To give them a ride when they need it; to have them over to my house. I have memories of scouting events with them and camping trips. I've also been around to witness trials in their lives. When I leave California, I will miss these boys and their families.

So much emotion welled up inside me today. I was out running my errands and all the sudden while driving tears streamed down my face. Once I got home I cried some more. It felt good to get it out. I continued on with my day, but was struggling. Then tonight Mark had on a travel show about Colorado. The host was going through a little town called Crested Butte. All the sudden it hit me what the Lord wants to give me. I sat amazed and excited about what I saw on the TV.

This brought to memory a trip to Colorado. Mark and I took it before we adopted the boys. We stayed in the San Juan mountains. I remembered the slower pace, the beauty and the friendly people. We met an artist in one of the small towns and watched him blow glass. He was also a bow hunter and told us a tale of an encounter with a bull elk. I remember Mark and I didn't want to leave Colorado.

Through all this, the Lord has brought me peace about the move (at least for now). And not only peace, but excitement! Who knows, more emotions may rise to the surface, but tonight I am thankful to the Lord for His blessed loving kindness!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


It has been hard to think about writing. I have been busy trying to get over this flu. Today, even though I felt weak, I went out and did some grocery shopping. I did not feel so good doing it, but I made it through. I had to take a nap afterward, but I was able to do everything I needed to do today.

Thanks to those that responded to my last post. Your words of encouragement and your prayers mean so much!! On Monday, Mark turned in the paperwork to accept the job in Colorado. Ever since he did that I have felt depressed. I do not want to leave. All of us are a wash of emotion. I keep thinking what I am leaving behind and uncertain what I will be gaining.

Also, there are feelings coming out regarding my extended family. As I have mentioned before on my blog, I am the only Christian in my family. So some members of the family are not sorry to see me leave. This hurts quite a lot. Even so, it is part of the process of drawing nearer to the Lord.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Still Sick and Some Shocking News

Thank you to those of you who have prayed for us. Turns out that Mark is fine, he just isn't getting sick. Praise God!!! But we had to cancel our little trip away, so that was a bummer. The boys are better, but not all the way. My fever got up to 101.8 at the highest. It finally broke this morning and the rest of the day I have had a low grade fever. This flu is a tenacious beast. I still feel miserable and I am not able to what I usually do.

Okay, imagine, there I am sick with a fever and my husband comes home and tells me that his company is closing up shop here in California. Then he tells me that they have offered him a position in the Denver, Colorado. Yeah, shocking right? The boys and I were stunned to say the least. All of us are native Californians, we have lived in California all our lives. My family is here, our friends, doctors, dentist, etc. We don't want to leave, but we have no other alternative.

The unemployment rate in California is the highest it has ever been. Even if Mark can land another job, how long will it take? If he has to take a cut in pay we won't be able to afford that because the cost of living in California has gone up. Then with the property values down we will be blessed to break even on our house. Right now nothing looks good to me.

I don't quite know how I am going to say this next part. Those of you who know the Lord, well, I know you will understand. A few years ago, the Lord put a strong desire in my heart to want to move. I felt if we were going to move it was definitely going to be the Lord's doing and I had to leave that desire completely with Him. It was around that time the Lord impressed on me the state of Colorado, saying we would move there and I would not be happy about it. I knew that a division of the company Mark works for is in Colorado, but at the time Mark's company was stable.

Time went by and I put the moving thing on the back burner. I decided I need to bloom where I am planted here at my little blue cottage. Then the news came that Mark's company was bought by a company in Germany. I watched as things changed within the company. Then the layoffs. Now, years after I was impressed by the Lord, Mark comes home and says we are moving to Colorado. When Mark spoke those words I was shocked, but at the same time I knew...this is the Lord's will for us. I do not know how it will work out, what is there for us, etc. I just have to trust and obey.

So dear readers, please follow me on my journey and see what the Lord is going to do.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Prayer Request

Could you please pray for me. I felt like I was making a come back from this flu, but today I feel worse and I have a temperature of 100 degrees. The body aches are horrible and my chest hurts. Thank you in advance for the prayers.