Archive: August 2010
Your beauty is in every pine needle and every leaf in every tree in my sight. Your essence is in the deep blue of the sky and the lake and the pervasive green of the grass and the plants. Your life-giving power is in the air I breathe, so warm for so short a time. You are all around me this morning. Your Spirit hovers close by, changing my thoughts and perceptions to more of You and less of me.
I know myself. That is a big job. But You are a great and marvelous God. You are King of the ages. And You are Lord of my life. And You are just and true, Lord God Almighty.
Shared by our friend, Donna
When I first started trying to have my own relationship with God, I did what I thought “good Christians” do. I read my Bible every day, because that’s what “good Christians” do. I tried to pray every day, because that’s what “good Christians” do. I memorized Scripture, because that’s what “good Christians” do. But God had other ideas; He wanted my heart.
Please don’t misunderstand what I am about to say. All of the aforementioned disciplines are good things. All of them are Biblical ways to get to know God better. God wanted more from me, He wanted my heart.
God blessed all the time I spent reading the Bible. He blessed my prayers and the time I spent memorizing His Word. He was with me when my brother died. He carried me when I had to make life-changing decisions. He was faithful to me, even when I didn’t do what “good Christians” do. He would quietly call my name, and ask me for my heart. I would repent and return to doing what “good Christians” do.
When I first got married, I tried to “encourage” my husband to do the things “good Christians that are married” do. I wanted us to pray together. I wanted us to do devotions together. I wanted us to read the Bible together. My husband tried to do some of these things at first, but it was so against his character and who he knew God to be that my husband finally said, “No” to my “encouragement”. I didn’t quite know what to do with this because all my life I had lived by the standard of what “good Christians” do. Remember, all of these are good things. I would recommend all of these disciplines to people who want to grow closer to their spouses and to God. But God wanted more from me, He wanted my heart.
If I couldn’t be a “good Christian” in my marriage, what was the point of trying to be a “good Christian” on my own. I let my time in the Bible dwindle. I let my prayers fall to only when I was in a crisis. I forgot all the Scripture I ever knew (not really, it still comes to mind when I need it most). None of it mattered to God, because all He wanted was my heart.
Time moved on as time has a way of doing. I was faced with bigger bumps in the road. I realized my own strength was weak, at best. I fell down and got up only to fall down again. I would get up again and fall down some more. Until I hadn’t the strength to rise from the dust. All the while, God quietly called my name, and asked me for my heart.
I read my Bible now, because I desire to know what it says. I pray now, because I want to visit with Jesus. I memorize Scripture now, because I like to remember what God has said to me. God finally has my heart.
Margaux and I grew up in Long Valley, as did our Dads, Paul and Frank. Our grandfathers, Dickie and Charlie, were some of the early pioneers who came to this cold, mountain valley. And our grandmothers, Margaurite and Ora, were fast friends, so we’ve always thought they would think it was special that we have such a great kinship, too.
That being said, the theme for our valley parade this year was something like “Through the Ages”, so Margaux & I paid tribute to our families by creating an entry called “Daughters of the Pioneers”.
We got the old buggy out and gave it a good cleaning….
scrounged up some old-time clothing for the girls…
and the whole lot of us women folk…
Made some posters, hung some banners, included lots of candy for tossing…
or eating, too…
got in a daily nap for Sage at the usual time (no stress or totally stressed?)
Then we headed down the parade route…
P.S . We worried and wondered all week about what to do for a “horse”. Our old buggy horse is almost 30 and has earned her right to stay away from the crowds and noise of the “big city. ” And it takes a lot of work to create a new buggy horse. Obviously, we aren’t in the right stage of our lives for the time needed to train buggy horses. We tried a 4wheeler with a team of stick horses on the front, but it really took away from the charm. So, in the end, Margaux and I were the horses…..With a sign on the back that read, “Is this what they meant by a horseless carriage?”
Margaux and I planned a week this summer that was all-out crazy busy…and we lived to tell about it! It all started when Margaux said she wanted to give the girls an opportunity for riding lessons from me, and when I mentioned I was looking for some swimming lessons, she volunteered for that task. But it was also Vacation Bible School week. And we also wanted to gather up stuff for a parade entry for the girls to participate at the end of the week. So…..
Complete with Bible stories, friends, face painting, crafts, and snacks (very sugary, very, very, sugary…who plans these snacks? –Egads! Oh well, it just added to your excitement, didn’t it girls? C’mon, let’s go!)
Then on to lunch at the ranch…(Eat some spaghetti, girls, even though it doesn’t taste as good as the very sugary snacks you just ate 45 minutes ago at VBS. Eat, so we can go ride…Eat, eat, eat…C’mon, let’s go!)
Get the horses ready…(Thanks for helping tie, Cassidy, but don’t pull quite so much…C’mon, let’s go!)
Lead ‘em out to the arena…(Stay in front of Harley and keep walking, Mackenzie, don’t stop…C’mon, let’s go!)
And ride!..(Ride, Aspen, don’t just complain about the dirt in your boots…C’mon, let’s go!)
Then on to swimming lessons (Swing your arms, girls; blow into the water, kick,kick,kick! C’mon, let’s go!).
Margaux was a trooper in the cold lake water and the extra buoyancy in her mid-section proved to be very beneficial. [That’s Cowboy Colt in the hangar:)] (“Motor boat, motor boat, go so fast, motor boat, motor boat, step on the gas”…C’mon, let’s go!)
Then get out the buggy and get it cleaned up for the parade (Clean down into all those button-holes girls. C’mon, let’s go!).
Trying on dresses for the parade to be “old-time girls” (You do look cute in that dress, and we’ll find aprons tomorrow. C’mon, let’s go!)
Getting out the stick horses to pretend to pull the buggy (Gallop over to the buggy so we can figure out how to tie them on. C’mon, let’s go!)
Whew! I’m glad we don’t try to do that every week! However if you’ld like to join us on our next misadventure….C’mon let’s go!
My daughter is back in school and needs every minute of sleep she can get, so no more running with her.
Our fence is finished. I even found the energy to take a picture.
So that exercise program is complete.
Now I am planting more yard so I have green around my house in the heat of next summer. Last week I sprayed the weeds. Next week I get to haul what I take out of stalls. I’ll keep you posted.
When I was applying for colleges, back in the day, I had a school on the East Coast fly me to Virginia to see if I wanted to apply. I was excited. I hadn’t been to the East Coast before and I felt so grown up flying by myself.
When I arrived, I felt a little like a deer in the headlights. Everything was so foreign to me. After less than 24 hours, I realized that as glamorous as the East Coast sounded in my mind, I couldn’t thrive there.
The campus was beautiful. There were cool old buildings everywhere. The school was rich with traditions. That part of my trip was just as I imagined. But there were so many trees you could never see this.
And you wouldn’t see this.
Not even once.
Until you have seen the vastness of the West in person, it is hard to imagine how . . . well, vast it really is. I love the open spaces. I like trees, but I like them here and there, not everywhere.
Russia had vast areas, too. We rode a train through some of the plains south of Moscow. It made me very homesick (especially after being in Russia for six weeks). I wish now I had taken pictures so I could show you. It looked like Kansas’ wheat fields.
The East Coast is beautiful. I would love to see Vermont in the fall. I would love to see Boston. I would love to see some of the restored plantations in the South. There is so much history and tradition all with a modern pulse in the East. I love visiting. I just feel more at home here.
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
My mother is a wise woman. (Unfortunately, I haven’t always been smart enough to know this.) She was imparting some of her wisdom to me the other day.
She told me that the fruits of the spirit are available to all who know Jesus, we just have to partake of the fruit. Personally, I have been struggling with self-control – especially with my anger. I like to let my temper rule me. It makes for a very un-peaceful house. After some discussion with my mother and my husband, I decided I was willing to change.
God is faithful. Self-control is there for me, I just have to willingly and honestly choose to partake. The house has been much more loving, joyful, peaceful, kind, and good. What a mighty God I serve! I choose to partake of one fruit and I get the benefits of five others.
Ecclesiastes 11:1 Cast your bread upon the waters, For you will find it after many days.
So…the story goes like this:
We were sitting at a rodeo (approx 10 years ago), watching a few too many goat tiers tie a few too many goats, when one of the mom’s- Durena, had a startling, life-changing revelation. The boys and men who helped bring the goats in and out of the arena all treated the goats a little bit differently. Some were really sweet with the little goats- carrying them into the arena and scratching their little ears while a horse and rider barreled towards them at full speed. There were other guys who weren’t quite so endearing with the goats– they drug them by their little collars, acting annoyed at their goat duties. Durena said to take note of the way those boys handled the goats– they would likely treat their future wife the same way they interacted with the little goat. It became a really funny way to analyze a man– unbeknownst to him, of course. Often we didn’t need to say a word to one another, we’d just make eye contact and make an “uh-oh” kind of face when one of the guys was too rough with a goat. It was particularly disappointing when a particularly cute cowboy didn’t treat the goats as we might have liked him to– sort of broke the deal before there ever was one, if you know what I mean.
That being said, I married Buck without ever seeing him bring a goat neither in nor out of an arena. It was risky, really. In hindsight, I probably should’ve been a bit more conscientious of the “goat test”, but I’m sure I would’ve married him irregardless of how he handled the goat scenario, so maybe it was just best to not to know then what I know now.
So, here we are 6 years post-wedding and I was finally able to observe Buck in two goat interactions. The first interaction took place at Rodeo Bible Camp a couple of weeks ago. There was a competition at the end of camp for the instructors- a goat roping competition. It was on foot and was team roping style, except with kids’ ropes rather than real ropes. It’s a friendly competition- mostly just to give the instructors a chance to appease their competitive nature after a week of teaching kids how to compete. It looks something like this:
(FYI… Buck isn’t pictured above, this is simply a picture to represent the event. OK, truth be told, I was Buck’s partner for the goat roping, so I was unable to take pictures while he/we were competing.)
At any rate, Buck was pleasant enough with the goat he roped- he was the healer, so there wasn’t a whole lot of interaction between him and his goat. It was fine. I didn’t think much of it, really.
Then there was this past weekend… it was our local Stockgrowers Ranch Rodeo.
Buck was in charge of the stick horse:
goat tail untying event that is put on every year for the 2-7 year olds. It’s a pretty intense event, as you can see in the picture.
So… the morning of the rodeo, the girls and I went with Buck to pick up the goats from our friends who have a herd of about 30 goats. Upon arrival, the girls and I walked up to the fence and started petting the friendly goats. Buck walked up a few minutes later with a rope in his hands. To which I said, “Really?” To which he said, “Oh, you watch, they’re wild!” To which I said, “Yeah, this one licking the girls’ hands seems like a real beast.” To which he ignored me and jumped the fence, rope in tow. As he began swinging his rope, the goats scattered, running this way and that, which made my cowboy smile and mutter something about them” being wild indeed“. To which I rolled my eyes. He proceeded to rope 3 goats, being particularly proud of himself for 2 out of the 3 loops he threw. After roping each goat, he tied a string around its neck, and then handed the little animal over the fence to me where the girls and I led each little wild beast to the trailer to be hauled to the rodeo.
Now here’s what I didn’t tell you, and what really gets me– after unneccessarily roping each goat, he then took the time to give the goat a little pat on the head, look it straight in the face, and say something to the affect of “You’re a cute little goat- that’s why I picked ya!”
I don’t know what to make of it! None of it makes sense- it’s suppossed to be a simple test of a man and Buck has somehow made it all very complicated and confusing. I’m losing sleep over it. I’m shaking my head in confusion over it. I’m eating too many chocolate chips because of it. On one hand, I’m utterly disgusted with the unneccessary roping, but on the other hand, it was done in such a cute little boy-ish sort of way– not a mean-spirited bully kind of way! Then…. THEN! To top it all off…. the pat on the head? The loving gesture to the scared little goat?!
WHAT?! MY FRIENDS?! DOES IT ALL MEAN?!
P.S. Random outbursts (RO’s) like this one should be coming much more often from me– internet is on its way! I’d say less than two weeks! My life isn’t the same without you. I’ll expand on that in a future RO.
Tri-tip is one of my comfort foods.
I take a tri-tip roast (I usually get mine from Costco.) and marinate it in Italian dressing for at least 30 minutes.
Then I Bar-B-Que it. Depending on the size, I grill it on medium heat for about 10-15 minutes a side.
This is delicious sliced and served by itself. However, after living in Southern California for several years, I add some “dippers”, such as salsa and guacamole.
You can also serve the tri-tip on tortillas as well. If you choose to serve on tortillas, I would recommend grating some cheese. I use cheddar. Mexican cheese tastes great as well.
I’m glad I lived in Southern California long enough to enjoy guacamole and salsa. Residing most of my life in the far north, I wasn’t raised with these delicious condiments. I was rather leery of trying them. So grateful I finally did.
I must share this little experience I had just recently. First, I must tell you that we bought this Chariot Cougar 1 a couple years ago and have used it quite a bit. I have really enjoyed it as a stroller and a bike trailer and it seems to be pretty comfy for Carly as well, since she has ridden in it without complaints.
I have not used that jogger attachment that you see here, but stroller wheels that attach on each side. Any-who, these trailers are quite amazing as you can get several attachments for them and only have one trailer and not 3 (or more) different devices for all you want to do. You can use the jogger (as shown), stroller, bike, and even get skis and a harness for pulling through the snow. You can also use the harness to pull and go on hikes if you so choose. We have not gotten the ski/harness one yet. So the story goes that we got this stroller at an REI Attic Sale for a SCREAMING deal. Just the chassis alone is $525, and each attachment is anywhere between $50-$100. So if you do that math, what we got was worth almost $800. (We got the stroller, bike, and jogger, plus a baby support, all for a fraction of the cost! Seriously!)
As the story goes, since I was pregnant with Cy, I have been wanting to get a double Chariot since we were going to be having two kids and the single just wasn’t going to work very well. I could have Carly in the stroller and strap Cy to my chest in the front pack, but that will only work for a little while, and only on walks. So a little over a week ago, I was looking on Craigslist (good ol’ Craigslist!) and came across a double Chariot for sale ($500) and it was even in McCall! I wouldn’t have to drive far to get it. So I called and they would hold it because I was having a yard sale and was hoping to sell my single. Well, guess what, mine didn’t sell so I put it on Craigslist. Still didn’t sell before they sold the double. BUMMER!
However, I was talking with Joe on Skype one night and we were looking through Craigslist and he said I needed to call on this ad he saw. I BRIEFLY read through the ad, and this gal wanted to trade her double for a single. Seriously!! I was so excited! I called her and we talked and made an agreement, meeting up a few days later in Horseshoe Bend to exchange our little wheels. (She lives in Boise so we met in sorta the middle).
Well . . . now I have a double and am so very excited! The kids like it; well, Carly says so and Cy looks like he’s okay with it :)
All that being said, I must give credit to God for this exchange. I thank Him for working on my behalf. Ephesians 5:20, “always giving thanks to God the Father for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” I was trying too hard to get the one out of McCall on my own, coming up with the money and such and wanting it SO bad, but it didn’t work out. As I was trying to scramble with selling mine and hoping they would hold it, I realized that I wasn’t asking God about this.
I then stopped and said, “Lord, you know I really want a double Chariot, but I’ve been trying to get this done on my own. I’m putting this in Your hands and will wait.” In Matthew 7:7-8, God tells us, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” And He also tells us in Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Therefore, I asked in faith and waited for the right timing. God has provided for the desires of my heart many times before, I just need to slow down and talk to Him about it.
Lo and behold, after talking to God, only a few days later, I got the double Chariot. GOD IS SO GOOD!! That’s just how He rolls.
P.S. Those are only a couple Scriptures I shared out of the many I found regarding this little experience. If you have a few minutes, read Matthew 6:25-34 where God talks about not worrying about the things we need. If He can take care of the birds and flowers, why wouldn’t He take care of us? He does! He cares about the little things as much as the big things in our lives. We just have to slow down and talk to Him, AND listen to what He might say to us.