Thursday, January 27, 2011

Mabrie - On the Move (Somewhat)

Tomorrow our little Mabrie will be 21 weeks old! The time has gone so fast. She started rice cereal at the beginning of this month and likes it most of the time. She's really a sweet, happy baby with the occasional temper that flares up that makes me wonder what she'll be like when she is bigger. I have loved watching her start to "play" with things - she'll reach and grab for toys that we hold out in front of her and just this week, she started this little trick:

video

Seriously?! She's just shy of being 5 months old and she's already starting to pull her knees under herself and lunge toward things! That just seems like it's happening too soon! HA! I fear she'll be walking at 9 months old and in to everything! I can't wait to see how her little personality develops and watch her as she can start interacting more and more with the other girls.

Just tonight, we gave her some veggies for the first time. We started with sweet potatoes and she inhaled them! We'll continue with those for the next few days and then move on to carrots and then green beans and so on. Then in a few weeks, I'll start introducing fruits. Gotta get her liking veggies first, cause if she starts with the yummy fruits, she'll NEVER want the veggies! I mean, who would?!



Such a sweet smile! Wish we all looked that cute with food all over our faces!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Haiti

Our church went on a Mission Trip to Haiti several months ago to do some work in the Port-au-Prince area. This area is still dealing with the devastation from the massive earthquake a year ago. While the team was there, they visited an orphanage and that visit has since rocked our church's world. The report they gave when they returned was heartbreaking. These children were living in terrible conditions, dealing with severe malnutrition, lice, worms, etc., etc. The decision was made that something HAD to be done. And WE (our church) were the ones to do it.

Our pastor told the church that a large portion of our Harvest Day Offering in 2010 was going to go toward feeding these 94 children for a year. And not just rice with a few beans once a day like they have been getting. Three full meals a day. Good meals. Meals that will not only satisfy them, but give them the much needed nutrients they are lacking right now. But, this wasn't going to be a small feat by any stretch of the imagination. This will require trips, monthly trips, by church staff and church members to go down there and see to it that the food is purchased and that these children are being fed and cared for. Not only that, but the first trip will be in February to go down there and build a kitchen and a place for these kids to eat their meals. The first team is heading out in a few weeks and it consists of some staff and several men in our church that have building/construction experience. They will build them a functioning kitchen so that they can cook this food that will be provided.

It's SO exciting. To be involved in something so much bigger than ourselves. To know that there's something we can do to help those in need. I'm pumped for and proud of my husband! He's getting his passport and he's joining one of the groups one of these months to go and serve.

Macie picked up a card at church tonight of one of the little girls that lives in the orphanage. She is excited about praying for this little girl. We are trying very hard to teach our kids that it's not all about them. They need to help others. We've been given much and much is required of us. These children need clothing, shoes, vitamins, food and hopefully our church can provide all of those things. And through that, my prayer is that we can also give them what they need more than any of that. Jesus.

James 1:27
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Money Lesson

Mike and I decided about a year ago that it was time to start giving the girls some chores to do around the house in order to earn an allowance. They are constantly asking for something and it was time they realized what it means to work, earn money and save for something that they want. Be it a new toy or a pack of gum at the check-out counter. It's never too soon to let them learn the process of saving and also learn what things cost.

So, the other day, Maddie had her ziplock baggie of money in her hand as we were walking out the door to Walmart. She told me she wanted to take her money and buy something. She had a bunch of change and 2 dollar bills. I told her she couldn't get much, but that if she wanted some candy or something, that would be fine.

We get to the store and as I was finishing up, she wanted to go look at the toys. I reminded her that most toys cost a lot more than $4-$5, but she insisted on looking. We walked up and down a few aisles and I remembered something she is always asking for, but I rarely buy. They are these little bathtub fizzy things. You drop one in the bath water and it turns it a fun color. The girls LOVE them! I mentioned to her that might be something she could afford, if she wanted them. And of course, she did! We headed over to the bath section and found them. They were just under $4 and I told her that she had enough to get them, but it would take most of her money. She insisted that was what she wanted and we went to check-out. At this point, $4 didn't mean much to her. She was just excited to use her own money and get her own receipt! :) When it was our turn to check out, I took her baggie and pulled out the 2 dollar bills and then enough change to cover it. Immediately tears filled her eyes. I asked her what was wrong and she said, "Why do they have to take both of my dollars?". I told her that was what it cost, but that she didn't have to get them. She could put them down and get some gum or candy and save her dollars for later. She said, "No, I really want them, mommy!". So, with tears streaming down her little face, she handed the container and her handful of money to the cashier. He gave her the bag and the all important receipt and started to ring out all of my stuff. As we were walking out the door, she goes, "Mommy, has Walmart ever taken all of your dollars?", I said, "Yes, Maddie, every time I walk in the doors!".

You don't know how badly I wanted to just buy them for her. Her poor, pitiful face as she was handing her money over was almost more than I could stand. She wanted something, but it was painful to her to let go of her money. She definitely learned a lesson that day.

And here's what I learned. How often do I want God's blessings on my life, but it's with tears in my eyes that I give Him my time, money, service, etc.? I want Him to bless me, but it's painful to give Him what He deserves. I was reminded that I shouldn't cling so tightly to this world. It was difficult for Maddie to let go of that money, even though by letting go of it, she got something she really wanted. I need to learn to let go of things, be a cheerful giver. Not only of my money, but of my time, of my things, etc.

So thankful for that little lesson. What I thought was a learning experience just for Maddie, turned into a much bigger learning experience for me.

2 Corinthians 9:7
Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Proud Mommy Moment

Haven't we all had days where our kids do something, something that we have taught them from the time they were very little with the hope that it will "stick", and when we either see them do it or someone tells us what they did and we feel like maybe, just maybe we are doing something right?! Well, I had one of those days yesterday.

Last night, the girls and I headed to a friend's house for dinner and to watch the beginning of the Sugar bowl. Mike was lucky enough to actually BE at the Sugar Bowl! We visited, ate, and the kids played until time to head home for baths and bed. As we were driving back, Macie and I were talking about her day at school and I asked her if she had fun eating lunch and watching a movie in her classroom. (Students with good behavior each month get to do this as a special treat with the teacher). She told me that it was a lot of fun and went on to tell me a little story, which made me so proud of her. She said, "Mommy, my friend and I were the only ones that brought our lunch, so we had to wait in the classroom while the other kids went to the lunch line. We got our lunches out and I asked her if she went to church. She said yes and so I asked her if she wanted to pray with me for our meal." She went on to say that the little girl agreed and Macie led them in a quick prayer before they started eating lunch.

How great is that?! It's something so simple. Something we do at home each night as a family. And she not only wanted to pray over her meal, but she also used the opportunity to witness and pray with a little friend. I was so proud of her. She's such a sweet little girl - we are so blessed to have her!

Proverbs 22:6
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.