Wednesday, September 30, 2009

smarty ***** under *****

Charter: Mollen won't understand that picture, Peyton...
Mom: oh, i'm sure she will, (not ever getting to see said picture) - Mollen is a very smart little girl.
Mollen: (perks up) Yes. My teacher told me i'm the smartest kid in my class.
Charter: (half believing, half doubting...) Did she really say that to you? (Have i told you how much i love this sweet, trusting little boy?)
Mollen: (grinning) Yes. She told me, "oh, Mollen, you are sooooooo SOOOOOOO SOOOOOOO smart. You are the smartest little child in this class..."
Peyton: i don't believe you. She probably said something like this, "Mollen, you are very smart, but nothing like daahhhrling little Leah here..." (said with an english accent for effect).
Mollen: (disgusted) Leah's not in my class.
Peyton: Yeah, but you get the idea...


Stealthily, Mollen sneaks up behind Cai & pulls out the back of her jeans & glances down the behind of them.
She laughs devilishly, "i'm gonna draw a picture of your underwear & show it to EVERYONE!!"
Cairo rolls her eyes & continues with what she's doing...
Two minutes later, Mollen prances down the stairs snickering gleefully clutching a piece of paper...
Cairo takes one look & says, "Hey, my underwear aren't even..." (checks) "Oh, yeh, they are the pink ones with the green waist... good job, molls."

(Cutest. picture. ever)

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

supermom i'm not.

There are a lot of myths out there about larger families. i'm not gonna shatter them all for you today, but i'll give a go at one that has been rearing it's ugly head in my circle of friends since news of our latest pregnancy got out.

i'm not supermom.

i'm not even "better than average" mom.
Sometimes, i'm a sucky mom.
It's the truth - ask Neil - or my kids - just please don't install a hidden camera or i'd be mortified. People think that because we have lots of little ones, that i *must* have been given more than my fair share of patience, mothering prowess, or organizational skills. It's just plain untrue. i've met many, many, MANY mommas with only 1 or 2 children about whom i've thought, "man, i could learn a whole lot from her..." or, "if she had 6 or 7 littles, she'd be doing a way better job than me..."
When i look at some mommas, i wish that they could be in charge of my child's education, diet, physical fitness regime, music lessons, wardrobe, photographs & discipline - i sometimes wish that i could take lessons from some moms on cooking & cleaning... Honestly? You name it & some other mom is better at it than me.
What i am learning to be good at is relinquishing control. i can't be everything to everyone, i can't have everything perfectly under my thumb - my humble abode becomes even more *humbling* after a full day of homeschool & meals & adventures with my little people - & at some point - slowly - along the line, i've learned that doing my best is good enough. The times in my life where i've been the free to "let go & let God" be in control... where i've allowed myself to be used by Him - have been the happiest of my life.
It sort of reminds me of that recurring line from Anne of Green Gables, "Do not fear! Susan is at the helm!!" (Good ol' faithful Susan...) i know that there is *peace*... there is *freedom*... because my Father is at the helm.
& you wanna know a secret? (i know it's still early on, i'm only 13 years into this whole motherhood thing...) But i'm becoming more and more convinced of something that started pricking my heart at the beginning of this whole journey... Children are a blessing.
i'm not amazing.
i'm not patient.
i'm not good...
but God is...
& does He ever give good gifts...

Monday, September 28, 2009

In response to invisible lines...

Someone asked me a question - & it resonated with me & so i decided to post my response here & maybe it will strike a chord with one of you.
The question (rephrased in my own words) was in response to my blogpost that you can read here. i was asked if in some way, i've ever wished that Caleb or Hope could've had the time to cross some of those imaginary lines - so that maybe other people could have more grace for the grief process, more understanding, & so that their lives would be honored by more people for having reached a certain stage.
Here is my response:
Funny – i have thought about that - *but* - i know that God took them at the exact right moment... Maybe partly to make me *aware* of the disparity in our compassion for losses at different stages? i do know that when i lost hope – i told God i was so grateful to Him that baby was far enough along that i could see the little person who i had wanted so much to mother.
Hope was tiny.
Like, the size of the top of my pinky finger. i could see tiny (& by tiny, i mean like thread-like) arms and legs... Just incredible. Hope’s little eyes were there – but seemed in the wrong place still – y’know what i mean? i think it was a very special gift from God that i got to see that little person’s sweet frame at *that* very precious, tender stage of pregnancy. i feel the same way about Caleb.

i felt such a fierce protectiveness after baby Hope was born, that i didn’t want to even show neil. We had taken pictures (2 & one is blurry) of Caleb - & they were always precious to me... but i knew i wasn’t going to take pictures of Hope... When Neil asked me to see baby’s body – i was terrified – that he would say the wrong thing and crush me – or that he wouldn’t be tender enough. It was a huge leap for me to be able to show him – in silence – our little one. He looked at hope & then he said, “it’s amazing the difference just those few weeks made between Caleb & Hope isn’t it?”
& it wasn’t the wrong thing to say. He remembered our little son - & we got to share our other tiny child together for just those few minutes... and i’m glad i trusted him.
i know it’s very hard for mamas to go through miscarriage & never ever get to see the little person – i prayed constantly from the time i knew i was going to miscarry till Hope came, that i wouldn’t miss that little body. i researched on the internet so i would know how big baby would be – from the u/s i knew that baby would measure about 10.5 weeks. God was gracious, wasn’t He?
i have no doubt at this stage in the game that each and every one of our baby’s days were ordained by the Creator - & that He has a purpose and a plan – even in their home-coming...

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Traipsing into the Teen Years...

Yeh, you heard me. When we woke up this morning, it was the dawning of a new era... Good morning teens.
Neil & i are naive & innocent to the joys of raising a teenager, but we enter this new phase full of hopeful expenctancy.
We love our girl.
& we trust that The One who loves her even more than we do, will faithfully navigate these exciting years for us - & for her as she grows into a young woman who tirelessly seeks the God she loves.
Happy Birthday, sweet baby Cairo...

Friday, September 25, 2009

school pics... behind the scenes...

So, since i accidentally posted twice yesterday, i'll make it a picture post today & try not to blather on too long. Cai looked at this picture & said, "Our family looks small..."

Yeh, this was actually the last picture that i took in our photo session that day. In between shots that i didn't post on my blog (for some reason they all turned out black except this one...) Mollen was picking her nose & threatening to wipe it on everyone... Gage was trying to escape from Peyton and so she has shoved his mouth full of chocolate chips to keep him happy & Sloanie is recovering from Mollen having (playfully?) kicked her in the shins... Andrea - if you're reading this, you are my hero - your pictures always look so delicious...

"Just take the dang picture, mom"

This was the only one that didn't have Gage's head in the frame. He was FURIOUS that i removed him from the special chair & so he was being a tiny tyrant & trying to dethrone Cai. Made for a nice, natural smile though i say, so as they say, "it's an ill wind that doesn't blow *some* good..."

We had to take 2 of Sloanie - this one is my favourite because she's wearing her dirty ol' hat. It's her trademark.

Peyton tried to clip this tie on Gage who was already waaaaaayyyyyy overdue for his nap. Let's just say that didn't go over too well. When Peyton decided to wear the tie herself, i thought, "Why the heck not?"

i love how Charter was forced to wear a button down shirt. Peyton dressed him while Cairo did his hair. i made him take a bath. One day he will thank me. i can't wait to see the special wife that God has all picked out for Charter. i think she will have to be a girl who grew up with all brothers who needs a bunch of sisters :)

i also made mollen take a bath... but it didn't rinse out all the b.a.d.n.e.s.s... as you can tell by my comments on the first picture. & yet... i've been noticing her little fingers and her tiny reaching arms lately - she's still so wee & growing and learning and exploring.

& sweet mr. moo who was overdue for his nap & wouldn't give even one teeny smile - still looked sweet in the vest that he picked out of his drawer & insisted on wearing...

Oh, new little baby, this is the little sweet bit of chaos that is your family. We can't wait to meet you & add your smiling face to our group shot.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

So, how'd it go??

As a parent, how many times in your child's life do you think you'll say those words?
Everytime one of them leaves for an event, a class, a playdate - i want to know every detail, "& then what did YOU say?? What did she say THEN??"
i've always had pretty good little informants. None of those little two word answers from my crew. i almost wished it wasn't so when they came home from violin on Tuesday....
It was their first lesson where i dropped off all 3 children & then returned for them after an hour and a half. They were to each bring a book to read while the others were getting their lesson - and i was curious how it had worked out with all of them sitting in on each other's lessons.
"So, how'd it go??" i asked as they piled in the door with all their cases, books & bags.
"Oh, GREAT!! i got a new song called 'Tic Toc Quavers!'"
"Yeah, & me & Peyton aren't doing the same songs anymore!"
"And, Nola loved how i played Tambourin!"
"That's great guys! So, did it seem long sitting there reading your books?"
"Not for me!" says Sloanie - the girl always has her nose in a book at home anyway & my biggest worry with her was that when it was her turn, she'd say, 'can i just finish this chapter first?'
"i didn't read a book." Peyton smiles at me.
"Oh? What did you do?"
"i just sat there. i picked at my scab. Then i put all the pieces of scab in my sock. When dad was driving us home, i emptied my sock into the back of the Yukon."
Let me just say, i'm curious if Nola noticed... and i'm glad Neil was still in his office when this conversation took place.
Thanks for the info, Peyts.

miss molls - made for homeschooing

It was the lead up to Kindergarten that had me fooled. She seemed so excited.
Turns out, she just wanted the new shoes & the pass-me-down backpack.
She's realising now, that it's kind of a sucky trade for her freedom.

Things Mollen Loves About School:

- Mollen loves that she doesn't have to wear a seat belt on the bus. That's my girl.
- Mollen loves that "i make the rules about when i make a craft."
- "i like that i have lots of friends."

Things Mollen Hates About School:

- "i think it'th TH-TUPID that you need a tag to go to the bathroom. i won't ATHk for one! it makeTH me THO mad that i jutht wait till i get HOME to go potty!" (yes, her lisp is that much worse when she's mad... i'll spare you the confusion of typing out her lispies in any further quotes.... but can you imagine that little pink tongue flying out of control? It's the sweetest, most adorable, endearing thing.)
- "we don't hardly do nothing at school."
- "Sometimes nobody sits by me and i have to sit by myself and i don't like it.
- "i don't like rules and tickets and line- ups."

i find i'm sort of the same way... i have to laugh at myself. Maybe me & my girl, we're just made for homeschool.
& i'm just fine with that...
Looks like we'll finish out our year though & then she can join our little homeschool, Chrysalis Academy in the fall. i get a kick out of her outrage... it's a good reminder to me to keep a lid on mine when they send home a list of rules for the parents...
Sighs Mollen, "Mama, it's hard to be five."
me, "oh?"
Molls, "yeah... especially when you're really, really smart."

i can only imagine, molls, i can only imagine...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Windows and Faith

i sure love you, little person. Sometimes i feel my heart seeming to expand right inside my chest. i try to picture your face, your features, your personality interacting with all the other little personalities in this house & i find i lack the imagination...i've often thought that i wish that God would have created women with a little window to the womb - so i could watch you and see that you're ok... but then i know that even in this silly detail, it was never beyond God's capabilities - He just had another, better idea. & His idea was that you would be formed in the secret place. And so, baby - grow - in your little nest. Mama will take this flying leap of faith with you and trust that God - who loves us both so much - will hold us in the palm of His hand as we fly.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tender Mama?

i feel sort of like if someone were to come up to me & give me a hug... i might just cry.
or if someone were to give me a big smile & say something nice... or not so nice... the tears would just come.
There's something beautiful that comes in the fragility of the emotional pregnant state...
& yet - it's uncomfortable as the mama - to know that at any moment, you could just dissolve into tears.
At church, there was a teeny tender cherub snuggling in her mama's arms. Her eyes were already pink from crying - which just added to her charm - & i couldn't help but touch her sweet little cheek & try to softly bribe a smile from her... All she could do was hold up her tiny hand to ward me off & snuggle her face deeper into her mama's neck to let me know that my advances were not welcome.
In light of my mama's absence, i will choose to take my cues from that little pink thing - not yet two years old, and in the moments of weakness & inability to be a normal, functioning, social being - i will hold up my hand in surrender & snuggle my face deeper into my Father's neck & allow the comfort of His arms provide the solace that i so desperately crave.
Isn't God Good? He doesn't berate me for my irrational, hormonal state - He created me to be just so... Maybe my weakness allows me to be more easily used. Maybe my easy tears allow for *communion* with my Saviour.
Maybe as i've aged, i've learned to let the back of my throat show when i laugh & let my tears show when i cry.
& that's ok.

Monday, September 21, 2009

crossing imaginary lines...

Baby -
Did you know that at some point last week, you crossed an imaginary line? It's the line in pregnancy that defines you as a *baby*... Maybe right now, you are looking down at your little toes, wondering how in the world you could be more of a baby because you hit 20 weeks than you were at 19 weeks...
It's a question that i've often wondered too...
Because i lost Caleb at 16 weeks, they called his loss, "intra-uterine death". i didn't miscarry, as they had to induce labour... and he couldn't be called a still birth because he hadn't crossed that imaginary line, so they had to find a new term that would fit his circumstances... They told me there was no need to document his little life and death in the same way. i guess - because, in a way - he didn't count.
i'm so glad that those lines are imaginary...
There is a day that you became a person, baby - & that day was the day that you were conceived. From that day forward, you were a distinct person - carrying your very own code of DNA - different from your brothers & sisters - your own unique blend from your daddy & me.
Throughout the days & weeks that passed since the moment you were conceived, you passed many milestones - developing a beating heart, all your little organs growing and maturing in your little body, eyes to see with, ears to hear with... little fingers and toes stretching and forming & getting stronger by the day... Bones hardening, skin strengthening - becoming a little person who is a little less dependent on me & more ready to be born and begin to breath air. You didn't magically become a person at any one of those milestones, you just got a little bigger, a little stronger, a little tiny bit less dependent (though obviously, you still need me...)
But, from day 1 - you were your own distinct little individual - my baby. My precious child. So, go little one, cross those imaginary lines, but know that not one of them determines your personhood or the value of this incredible gift we've been given with your life.
May your little life - in each day and every moment - be used by the Giver of Life - for His perfect purposes.

Friday, September 18, 2009

i'm losing my voice... workin it out.

Neil has been out & about & away from the house a lot in the last couple of days & that, for me, means i can play & sing without bothering anyone... well... there's my neighbours, but they don't give me dirty looks & slam shut the windows so that the sound doesn't carry... well... maybe they want to, but they're too polite.
Sometimes, when my heart is confused, i can work it all out there. & if a little one needs me, i can usually fit an extra bum or two on the bench.
i must be in the depths of confusion, because there's a lot of singing going on.
Music seems to soften my heart. It makes me more receptive to correction... it lets my heart sorrow, or laugh... or just shout...
i want my littles to see mama working it out - be it with the Bible in my hands, or in tears at the piano - or on my knees in the kitchen.
i want to set an example for them of a person who knows where the Source is... & is constantly going back for more.
When they're confused i want them to go there too... & ask for answers... & pour out their tiny soft hearts... to the Creator who loves them even more than i could ever.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Teaching Charter Manners

We were at my mother in law's house for supper one time and Charter was picking away at his salad, moving it around on his plate with his fork, with a dissatisfied look on his face. Finally Neil burst out, "Charter! Just eat your salad! Look, i ate my salad!"
"Yeah, Dad, but that's 'cause YOU like it."
Retorts Neil, "No i don't, it's disgusting, but i still ate it."
Nicely played, Neil, nicely played.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


We're renovating our basement.
By "we", i mean that Neil is renovating the basement & that sometimes i go plop my chubby bum down on the bottom step & moan about how tired i am as i watch him meticulously paint, tidy, lay flooring, do baseboards...
Sometimes he grunts at me to acknowledge my presence.
Sometimes... if i'm feeling especially energetic at the end of a day, i'll fold laundry downstairs to keep him company.
The best thing is: our basement is getting renovated.
The worst thing is: i lost a very important piece of our vacuum.
When we decided to renovate, we (& by "we", i mostly mean Neil) moved everything from our living room into my laundry room, and the girls room. It's so jam packed in there, that sometimes if we have people over to our house i let them look in there, just so i can absorb the look of horror on their faces. It's truly terrible. It's no wonder i lost the pipe part of my vacuum.
So, shortly after the work began in the basement, i noticed that the carpets were getting crunchy. That's a sure sign that it's time to vacuum. i told Charter to go get the vacuum from the basement for me. (That's part of our phys. ed. program at Chrysalis Academy). Grunting and sweating, he brought me up the hose, so i sent him back down for the Power Head. i use that because it sounds more impressive when it's vacuuming than the regular head. He dutifully brought up the power head, but no handle. i vaguely wondered about vacuuming on my hands & knees pushing the head around rather than asking him to go back down... but i'm not that merciful. i sent the poor guy back down to that horrible, packed, messy room for one more go. He came back empty handed.
"ArG!" i roared like a pirate, raising my rotund body from it's comfy nest where i had been waiting for him to bring me the required pieces, "Do i have to do everything me-self??"
Down to the dungeon i ascended... where i searched for about 4 minutes before i was overcome with depression at the state of my basement & gave up.
For days, the crunchy carpets persisted.
i gave the kids crackers & dry cereal for snacks & they must've re enacted the story of Hansel & Gretel & scattered the crumbs up and down the stairs till i was sure that we could feed the city's hungry with what was lying mashed into our carpet.
Daily the reward for the vacuum piece grew...
"Charter, if you find the piece of the vacuum, i'll give you .25c!!"
"Peyton, whoever finds the piece of the vacuum gets $1!!!!!!!!"
"Find that blasted piece, and you can skip math today."
"Let's pray to Jesus that someone finds the vacuum & then we'll all go for slushies..."
Finally, in a last ditch effort, i sent them all to that dark room while i cleaned the upstairs. i told them to set the timer & search for 5 minutes. If, when the timer went off, the piece was still missing, i would vacuum on my hands and knees - fat belly aside, it would probably actually be good for me to get some exercise. i tidied the upstairs & heaved a sigh as i heard the timer go off.
& then...
With a halo as bright as the sun surrounding her golden hair, Sloanie angelically climbed the stairs holding that beautiful bright metal tube in her hands.
She instantly became my favourite.
i plugged the vacuum in, and waved it across the carpet. At first, i was sure that our house was the target of a drive by shooting, but no... it was just the huge amount of crap being sucked up into that hose. After several passes, the sound of machine gun fire subsided and i began to be able to see the surface of the carpet.
Two things i will tell you:
Turns out people with 6 kids shouldn't ever, ever take several days off from vacuuming.
Turns out our carpet is green. i had sort of forgotten that.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

neil is my dj

i don't listen to the radio much.
i make enough noise so that i have no need to turn on any extra in my house... so Neil is our resident dj. He works in a (relatively) quiet office all day... (i say relatively because his office is in our garage, which is right beside our backyard, where our noisy offspring often frolic... loudly).
Because he works in a (relatively) quiet office, he listens to the radio... a lot. He also travels a lot & bought one of those fancy satellite radios so that he could have non stop music or horrible boring drivel (ahem...jim rome) while he drives.
He's up on all the music. He saves songs for me that he thinks i might like. He hates admitting that he likes Pink - but why is she saved on his favourites? He still sadly likes country, but for the most part, i'm content to let him pick our stations and dj our driving experience.
i'm always struck by the fact that even the most hard core music seems to have a theme of *hunger* for Jesus. i don't think i'm just reading into it either. Sometimes i think that music cries out for Him - even when the people performing never thought they had that intent.
it's like that Blaise Pascal quote:
“There is a God shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus”
& we keep shoving things in there - to shush the hunger... to drown the sorrow... to fill it with anything but... Him.
i know for a fact that there was a time in my life where as much as i loved my God, i wanted Neil to *be* Him with skin on. i wanted Neil's perfect husband love to instead be God's perfect Agape Love... & it was as impossible for Neil to be God for me as it is for me to be God for him, or for these little ones... who were each born with that same hunger for their Creator.
That's the feeling that strikes to my heart when i hear this song.
i remember when i first heard it... i cried. We were on a trip somewhere & Neil was being the dj - & when i heard her sing, "please don't leave me"... i thought of The One that i couldn't live without... The One who never will leave me. The One who reaches down into my desperate little life & heart & holds me in the midst of the storm.

Monday, September 14, 2009

to clarify...

i know it would be silly - for many of you to *really* walk on the walk in Edmonton...i guess my idea for my post below is more of a 'virtual' walk... if you want to post your babe's name, birthday, weeks along - in my comments section - this will be a little tiny taste of that walk that would be impossible to do in real life...
Denise, i totally remember your little babe without a name... y'know it's never too late...
Different things bring peace to different people. It was important to me to give my little ones names... & different people grieve in different ways.
i love that quote about grief being universal & yet completely individual... never completely understanding what another human being has had to process - & yet each of us having had to grieve at some point.

Walk with me?

i don't know how many of you read my blog - sometimes it's like talking out loud in a pitch black room & you don't know if the sound of your words are reaching any farther than the tip of your nose... but here's an invitation if there's anyone out there...
My friend J invited me last year to attend a Walk to Remember - you can see my last years post by clicking here .
The walk was a beautiful release for me - a chance as a mama to see my children's names written & spoken - & to be with others who didn't deem my little ones lives too short - or too insignificant to *count*.
So, here's my invitation - if you are a momma or a daddy who has lost a baby - or an auntie or an uncle who has lost a niece, or a nephew - will you walk with me? Will you share in this dark room a little bit of that little child whose brief life had an impact?
If all you want to write is a name - or a date... that's ok.
Caleb - September 1997 - the story of baby caleb.
Hope - February 2007 - the story of baby hope.
Maybe if we walk together - & allow our grief to be witnessed - there will be a softening towards all the little lives needlessly lost each year through abortion... if that's you - & you've lost a baby through abortion, of course you are invited to walk here with us... Your baby's life counts - as does your grief.
Will anyone walk with me?
Just leave a comment in the comments section...

Friday, September 11, 2009

taking charter to the midwife...

i decided since it's such a relaxed atmosphere at the midwives, it's easy to drive to & there's a parking lot so i don't need neil to chauffeur me, that i would take each of the littles on a date to at least one of my midwife appointments.
Neil came with me to my first one, as i don't have the courage to bring a wee one before we've heard that tender beating heart...
But Wednesday was my second appointment & by luck of the draw, Charter got the first turn.
The last thing he said to me at night before he went to bed was, "Thanks for taking me tomorrow, mom!!!!"
In the morning, his first thought was what time we would have to leave to get to "hear the heartbeat!" We zipped through school that morning - and decided to take our reader with us so we'd have something to do in the waiting room.
As we pulled onto the highway, he sighed, "mom, i'd be happy if you & me were just *going somewhere* today... like, for a few days... on a trip... that would make me happy."
"Me too, buddy." i sighed... what a honey.
He then pulled out his Frog and Toad book & chortled & laughed his way through 2 stories as i negotiated traffic & we finally arrived at the midwives office.
My appointment was a quick in & out type thing - we chatted, listened for a minute to that precious sound, which Charter proclaimed was a "cute sound"... & before we knew it, we were climbing back in our big old rusted white Yukon for the drive home.
As he pulled his seatbelt across his muscly little chest, he sighed to me, "Mom, that was the funnest thing *ever*."
How did i get so lucky?
It made me melt for the little one growing inside - that little appointment that was kept on babe's behalf - and it made me melt for the little man who rode along because he's already in love with the wee sibling that's coming.
i love how we all grow & stretch and make room for the next babe & yet somehow, before they're even here, babe has given so much more than they've taken...
Just another one of life's little miracles...

Thursday, September 10, 2009

& then there are the tough days...

Tuesday was one of them...
i had a million things going through my mind as soon as i woke in the morning: my crab-walking, sleep talking, gets himself naked, freaking out in the night son - (Does he need to see a sleep specialist? What is going on in that little brain of his???), my *almost* 13 year old daughter who was going to take her very first flight - far from home, my other daughters first violin lessons, a dusty house from basement renos, a 5 year old who was very nervous about the bus since it showed up early on Friday - & it made her scared that she beat us to the stop & had now lost her faith in her mama.
i almost knew that day would be full of: tears, emotions, overwhelmed, failure, sad, worry, hormones, cold, unable...
i noticed in the morning, but i refused to do anything about the fact that i had a large grease stain on the belly of my shirt. Was this the first sign that i was already beat? One child's lessons caused a tearful outburst. She was still crying in her room when Cairo left for the airport. My husband phoned at 1pm & asked what was for lunch & i realised i still had my poor crew held prisoner at the kitchen table... and lunch hadn't occurred to me. When the phone rang, & i saw that it was Elmer - i cried out to the kids, "Please, don't answer it this time!"
i forgot to start the laundry.
i really, really cannot afford to ever, even once forget to start the laundry...
i showed up at their violin lessons without books or my cheques for the year, and worried that Sloanie looked so anxious that she might make herself sick...
These were just some of the moments that made up that day...
So, there you have it... in all it's disjointed glory... the ugly underbelly.
The truth is...
On Tuesday - i was unable... & when i sat to hide my head in the sand & write in my little pink journal, the only words i could manage to pen were, "i need you, Jesus."
He saw me in my little pot bellied state...
With my greasy shirt,
and my frustrated offspring.
He heard me when i put my face in my hands & moaned, "i'm the worst mom ever."
i know He had compassion on me.
& just knowing that He was there, for me...
was enough.
Jesus, you are enough.
i am...

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

i whispered a name...

In the dimly lit bathroom, soaking in the bubble bath, with only Gage as my witness i whispered my favourite baby name.
Immediately, Gage's face turned towards me & he leaned in so close, our lips were almost touching... he whispered it back.
i like names that have significance. i don't mind names that are different, or old, or unheard of. i want your name to *mean something to me*.
It's not likely to really be your name baby, afterall, dad & i have the hardest time agreeing on names, & i want him to like your name too.. likely in the next 5 months, there will be more names whispered out loud... rolled around like a werthers in my mouth, tested & doodled & examined for beauty and purpose...
but for just an instant... saying it out loud... made me feel like you're real.

Monday, September 7, 2009


"Soooooo, why is there no school on Monday?"
Neil: Because it's labour day! So, it's a bit of a holiday.
Charter: MOM'S HAVING THE BABY ON MONDAY??!!! (labour day... get it?)
Neil: uh, no... there's just no school...
Charter: (disappointed) oh.
Charter: Mom, is that our baby on that ticker?
Mom: yes.
Mom: no, i wish! it's not *really* our baby, it's just a picture of a baby progressing through the weeks of pregnancy at the same time as our baby.
Charter: (disappointed) oh.

The anterior placenta has been a bit of a pain... Cairo has been the only one who was around at the right moment & felt the baby kick from the outside. i hope the others can have that opportunity soon... this baby could kick more for my comfort too... i remember Sloanie being a very gentle kicker - i wonder if i had an anterior placenta with her?

Saturday, September 5, 2009

a week quietly slips past

i remembered by looking through your little baby book, Caleb. i had forgotten that you were born at 12:30pm.
It's the week that little Caleb was born & wee Hope should have been due. Their dates criss cross in both September and in February, when Hope was born & little Caleb was due. My auntie told me when i lost my little boy that i would remember him in both those months & it has been true.
It's not a morbid, distressing memory... but i choose to remember because their little lives changed me. They had value - and now, my little ones reside with The King.

Friday, September 4, 2009


Another poetry challenge from Minerva... if you want to read my past couple weeks' entries, you'll have to plod through her comments section :) Her poetry challenges are usually every Tuesday. i'm not even close to happy with my entry this week - kinda lame-ish 4th grade type poetry...
but o,
what a sweet feeling to realize that it was never about *me* or how good i could be... instead, it was all about Him - the One who is already perfect. So, in light of the fact that the Truth is prettier than any poetry i could write, i decided to post my poem anyway... (*background* my mom sent me a card while i was in college & all it said was 'keep looking up, beauty is everywhere'... )

"Keep looking up, Beauty is everywhere..."
i'd gone, and her voice had followed me there.
amidst the filth and void darkness around,
they lessened the burden that i had found,
& i in humbled state heard from his lair.

Echos of mercy now rang through the air.
Lies bonds, by sweet truth now beyond repair.
Free now, i stumbled towards that Great sound.
"Keep looking up."

How foolish i am! This truth i can bear!
Never about me, that lie's a snare.
Oh, Truth, free me from that bloodthirsty hound,
it's all about Him - His beauty abounds.
My eyes from Truth's garments, i cannot tear.
Beauty is everywhere.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


i remember as clear as if it was yesterday - after giving birth & catching my breath, being wheeled down the hallway of the hospital to a recovery room.
i felt awake, alert, alive...
and oh,
The nurses had wrapped him up as snug as a bug in a little blanket with a teeny toque on his head & i was snug as a bug in a clean nightie & housecoat...
and he was in my arms -
instead of in my belly.
i looked at him & he was *perfect*.
i felt a crazy person laughter rising in my throat as i held him & met each person's eyes as we walked down that hallway.
They couldn't avert their eyes from mine after that first contact... each had to smile at my insane face filled with joy & offer their congratulations. My smile was out of control, i'm sure they could count every one of my molars - my cheeks ached - but i couldn't stop my face from reflecting my heart's rapture.
i felt like i could leap from that chair at any moment... (i couldn't... haha) and scream, laughing, "LOOK AT HIM!!! We've been waiting for him for so long & now he's here!!! Isn't he BEAUTIFUL??!!" But somehow, i held myself back.
When we arrived at my room, & i eased myself onto my bed, the nurse offered to move my little boy into his little prepared bassinet.
Maybe i growled... Maybe she just knew enough not to touch him... They slid shut the curtains & i laid him beside me & drank him in. i wrapped & unwrapped him & counted his fingers and examined his perfect tiny toes... i whispered crooning words of love into his sleepy ears and touched his soft downy head.
Each day since then, God has been gracious enough to refresh that little flashback into my mind. A year and a half later, when i tuck his sweet head onto my shoulder & carry him to his little bed - i remember that wonder, and that gratitude that i felt that very first day.
Each one of my little ones has brought with them some memories - some flashbacks - that refresh my momma heart & remind me to be grateful...
Today's took my breath away.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


yeh, she's that kid who'll spring one of these on you before you've had your coffee in the morning...
molls: "So, nobody made God?"
me: "nope"
molls: "But, God made Jesus?"
me: "Well, the bible says that Jesus was there in the beginning with God..."
molls: "So, then how can Jesus be God's son?"
me: "Well...."
molls: "So God never had a mother?"
me: "nope."
molls: *sigh*
me: "what?"
molls: "poooor God."

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


i named my blog when i felt like i was walking through a bit of a desert. i had to go back & see when i posted my very first post - pheuf... i can't believe it was 2006!
i guess it is a bit of a mouthful, but it was a name that i could wrap my mind around at the time & it's meaning still resonates with me now.
Sojourner means a temporary traveller - or to reside temporarily.
Ephraim is the name that Joseph gave to his second son - it means "fruitful" & Joseph named him that because he said that God had made him "fruitful even in the land of my oppression". Regardless of the fact that he had been sold into slavery by his own brothers & imprisoned for his integrity... God allowed Joseph to bear fruit.
As a follower of Jesus, i know that this world is not my permanent home... Heaven is my home - & i'm just a sojourner here....
My prayer is that while i sojourn here, that God would make me fruitful too...


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