care taking, commitments, economics, family, family bonds, lack of sleep, life, marriage, medical, motherhood, motivation, nostalgia, random, relationships, secrets, sleep, society, son, talent, thoughts, wife, women

This Generation of Motherhood

Born in 1972 to a military dad and a domestic mom, I experienced a lot in my short life-different cultures and lifestyles. What most interesting to me was my own mother’s unique ability to do ‘anything’ well.

My mother is the queen of all crafts. She’s an artist, who designs her own patterns and creates the most beautiful stained glass art. She’s a expert seamstress, who can whip up a valance and drapes in a jiffy or master the complicated art of quilting at it’s highest level. She’s a master gardener who always won ‘best garden or yard’ when I was growing up. She’s literally trained as a master gardener! She’s a whiz in the kitchen, cooking up the most incredible creations you’ve ever tasted. As we moved to state to state…or country to country, she would learn and perfect every local cuisine.

Her mother before her, my adorable Grama, was a home economics teacher who raised and fed 3 kids and all their friends. Her home was open to anyone who was hungry, and most people always ended up at their kitchen table. They had their choice of eating homemade breads, jams from her own vineyard, and fresh vegetables, which were grown in her own garden, cookies, and real home style cooking. My Grama made all the kids’ clothes, cooked all their meals from scratch, and was a medical genius. Her home was immaculate and I often wondered when she had time for sleep. She even went back to get her masters in the 1940’s, while raising her 3 children and maintaining the home. She was a truly amazing and loving woman, who had it all together.

I come from a long line of self sufficient, how-to wise, and ingenious women, who did it all.

Then I look around me and see my home, cluttered and crazy, and wonder how I stack up.

I often wonder why I am not just like my mother and grandmother. I feel lacking in the many arts of domesticity. I’m a good cook, but often don’t have the time with my full time job…especially since my husband’s food allergies/special diet leaves me with little options for feeding my family. So ‘if’ I had time to cook it would be two separate meals, vs. one for all three of us.

I have so many time constraints that the weekend is reserved for cleaning, so during the week I feel overwhelmed with the prospect of it. My husband’s job is so demanding, he’s rarely even home. So when he is…his time is dedicated to the outdoor responsibilities. Some days I feel that it’s all an uphill battle.

So I choose one thing to do each day…vacuum…laundry…dishes…etc, however these are things I rarely get help with. My husband is really good about doing dishes and taking out the trash, but to see him try to vacuum or dust would be a miracle. He feels he does it all around the house, but he’s never here to do it…so I’m not sure how his thought process stacks up evenly on that one.

I have a sewing machine…but do I use it? No…I have good intentions and even have some squares cut out for a T-shirt quilt, which is stacked in my closet. However it’s been in my closet for 4 years, and hasn’t yet been touched to turn it into the final project. I know I’m not the only mother in today’s age that is in the same boat. I read a <a href=”http://motherhood.blogspot.com/2007/08/i-own-sewing-machine-and.html”>blog</a&gt; today that confirmed I’m one of at least a few of the same mind.

My mother had two kids, and my grandmother three. I love having my one, and wonder if I could ever handle more. I know they say you always adjust, but I can’t fathom the clutter with two kids. I’m on a mission to get clutter control…banish the little toys that have no place…secretly donate the toys which aren’t a favorite anymore…and firmly put my foot down when my son wants to drag out more toys out than he’s put up. We’ve been working on the last one for a year now…hopefully it will kick in gear without me asking him.

When I compare myself to the mother’s who have come before me, in my family, I feel so minute. Yet I know I’m a very giving loving mom, who has the patience of Job…most days. I adore my son and he knows how loved he is. He helps with the chores, and is responsible for things in our home. I just wish I had it together like my grandmother did and my mother does.

I think I’m missing my Grandmother a lot too today. I’ve felt her and my Grandfather’s presence a lot in the past 3 weeks, so I guess that’s what’s prompted these thoughts today.

Any other mother’s out there with the same thoughts? Or is it just me???

Christianity, church, commitments, conflict, faith, family, health, life, marriage, medical, prayer, publishing, relationships, spirituality, surviving

An Email to Consider…

This was sent to me yesterday and I think it’s a valuable lesson for all of us.


This is a thought provoking read about how it is in this world by a very
candid man. This is an absolutely incredible interview
with Rick Warren, author of “Purpose Driven Life”. His wife now has
cancer, and he now has “wealth” from the book sales.

In the interview by Paul Bradshaw with Rick Warren, Rick said: “People ask
me, “What is the purpose of life?” And I respond: In
a nutshell, life is preparation for eternity. We were made to last forever,
and God wants us to be with Him in Heaven.

One day my heart is going to stop, and that will be the end of my body –
but not the end of me. I may live 60 to 100 years on earth, but I am going
to spend trillions of years in eternity. This is the warm-up act – the
dress rehearsal.

God wants us to practice on earth what we will do forever in eternity. We
were made by God and for God, and until you figure
that out, life isn’t going to make sense.

Life is a series of problems: Either you are in one now, you’re just coming
out of one, or you’re getting ready to go into another one.

The reason for this is that God is more interested in your character than
your comfort. God is more interested in making your life
holy than He is in making your life happy. We can be reasonably happy here
on earth, but that’s not the goal of life. The goal is to grow in
character, in Christ likeness.

This past year has been the greatest year of my life but also the toughest
with my wife, Kay, getting cancer.

I used to think that life was hills and valleys – you go through a dark
time, then you go to the mountaintop, back and forth. I
don’t believe that
anymore. Rather than life being hills and valleys, I
believe that it’s kind of like two rails on a railroad track, and at all
times you have something good and something bad in your life.
No matter how good things are in your life, there is always something bad
that needs to be worked on. And no matter how bad things are in your life,
there is always something good you can thank God for.

You can focus on your purposes, or you can focus on your problems. If you
focus on your problems, you’re going into
self-centeredness, “which is my problem, my issues, my pain.”

But one of the easiest ways to get rid of pain is to get your focus off
yourself and onto God and others.

We discovered quickly that in spite of the prayers of hundreds of thousands
of people, God was not going to heal Kay or
make it easy for her. It has been very difficult for her, and yet God has
strengthened her character, given her a ministry of helping
other people, given her a testimony, drawn her closer to Him and to people.

You have to learn to deal with both the good and the bad of life. Actually,
sometimes learning to deal with the good is harder. For instance, this past
year, all of a sudden, when the book sold 15 million copies, it made me
instantly very wealthy.

It also brought a lot of notoriety that I had never had to deal with
before. I don’t think God gives you money or notoriety
for your own ego or for you to live a life of ease.

So I began to ask God what He wanted me to do with this money, notoriety
and influence. He gave me two different passages
that helped me decide what to do, II Corinthians 9 and Psalm 72.

First, in spite of all the money coming in, we would not change our
lifestyle one bit. We made no major purchases. Second, about midway through
last year, I stopped taking a salary from the church. Third, we set up
foundations to fund an initiative we call The Peace Plan to plant churches,
equip leaders, assist the poor, care for the sick, and educate the next
generation. Fourth, I added up all that the church had paid me in the 24
years since I started the church, and I gave it all back. It was
liberating to be able to
serve God for free.

We need to ask ourselves: Am I going to live for possessions? Popularity?
Am I going to be driven by pressures? Guilt? Bitterness? Materialism? Or am
I going to be driven by God’s purposes (for my life)?

When I get up in the morning, I sit on the side of my bed and say, God, if
I don’t get anything else done today, I want to know You more and love You
better. God didn’t put me on earth just to fulfill a to-do list. He’s more
interested in what I am than what I do.
That’s why we’re called human beings, not human doings.

Happy moments, PRAISE GOD; Difficult moments, SEEK GOD; Quiet moments,
WORSHIP GOD; Painful moments, TRUST GOD; Every moment, THANK GOD.

Here’s another blog, ripple effect, that I think is worth a read.  It tells of Michael J. Fox’s interview and his view of his battle with Parkinson’s disease.  It’s a great post and an inspirational read.

curb appeal, gardening, marriage, pictures, work

After a little hard work

I posted a blog about our lack of curb appeal a while back, showing some pics of our lovely (not) bushes in front of our home. I just wanted to give an update and show you our updated look.  Our home has been repainted, and my hard working husband has toiled his summer away between all the rains to get our landscaping done.

Unfortunately the rains gave us no time left to plant anything for summer, except for a few hardy plants, so come fall I’ll be planting some more.

If you clicked to the last blog, you’ll see a vast difference in our curb appeal.  Yeah!  I’m loving my home again.

All that’s left now is to paint the entry way by the middle of next month.  First I have to finish stripping the wall paper though.  It’s a daunting task with 2 layers of wallpaper from the 1980’s…UGH, and it’s a serious strain to get off.

appreciation, Christianity, death, faith, faithful fridays, family, friendship, gratitude, life, nostalgia, relationships, thoughts, work

Faithful Fridays 8-24-27

Fridays come so quick lately. It’s 8:12 p.m. and again..I’m just now sitting to blog. I just got back from a co-workers funeral and I think it’s fitting just to post a simple poem from her service.

May today there be peace within.

May you trust God that you’re exactly where you are meant to be.

May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith.

May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you…

May you be content knowing you are a child of God…Let this presence settle in your bones, and allow your

soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise, and love.

It is there for each of and everyone of us.

 

 

Jan was someone I worked with for five years.  She was a customer assistant on my team, while I was in sales at the paper.  She worked their for many years, and knew the in’s and out’s of every departement of that place.  If you needed anything…she was the one to go to.  When I had a headache, I knew Jan would have a Tylenol.  When I cut myself, a bandaid was readily given from her desk.  If my son came to work with me, she had toys and coloring books handy to entertain him.  She loved to take care of others.

May you rest in peace Jan, and may God welcome you home.

 

allergies, food, health, medical, Okinawa, Oklahoma

A Surprising Find

I had to post this here as well as one of my other sites-Restaurant Alert. It was just to cool not to share.

Shiki Restaurant in OKC has always been a great place for lunch. I’ve been a few times, but with so many Japanese restaurants to choose from here in the metro it’s hard to remember which one I like best. It has always been good, but not someplace that stood out for me as exceptional.

We went last week again for my dad’s birthday. He’d never gone and had driven by a few times, curious to what it was about. I looked forward to trying it again to see how they handled my husband’s food, as he’d never been either.

If any of you have read through this site, than you know my husband’s food allergy situation. Wheat is not only a danger, but a threat to his existence. So anything cooked on a hibachi with Soy sauce would be detrimental to his health. Usually at most Japanese places, we struggle to communicate to the cooks who don’t speak much English. We cross our fingers and hold our breath that no cross contamination happens with my husband’s food.

Shiki exceeded my hopes for a night out with my family. We had no communication barrier, as the cook spoke excellent English. Instead of cooking my husband’s food ‘special’, which would leave me watching the grill the whole time to make sure his food stayed seperate, he cooked all ours special to make sure no one had to watch out for anything.

All our food was cooked with butter, and olive oil with no soy sauce. Now all we had to do was sit back and enjoy the show he put on, rather than sitting and waiting to see how how the ‘special’ food was cooked. He took such good care of us and it left us all relaxed and able to celebrate what we were really there for.

I ordered the Hibachi Chicken, which is the most delicious thing I’ve ever tasted. Whatever I’d ordered in the past, was surpassed by this night’s dinner. It was exceptional and I can easily say that now they stand out as a place I’d remember to return to. In fact, I’m getting hungry just thinking about my meal.

The most enjoyable surprise was the melon soda at the end of the evening…

When I lived in Japan, we had concession machines on the side of the road that held everything from beer to soda’s. You could just pull your car over, drop in some yen, and keep on driving with your cold beverage. My favorite drink was this cool glass bottle of honeydew or melon soda, with a marble sealing up the top.

To open it, you had to push the marble down, which fell into place and would roll back up as you sipped to keep the liquid from spilling out to fast. It tasted awesome and it was a novelty item that was just too cool.

…I saw some couples ordering this same melon soda across the room, and almost did back flips. Could it be? My favorite drink from Japan? The bottle was the same, but surely it wasn’t the same flavor!?

We ordered a couple, and it tasted just like I remembered. It instantly took me back to a charmed time in life, and I felt 17 again sitting on an island drinking in island life.

If you’re in town you need to head to Shiki at either location, not just for their food and service, but to try their Japanese soda.

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Shiki Japanese Restaurant
14041 N. May Avenue s Oklahoma City, OK 73134  s  Phone: 405-751-8989  s  Fax: 405-751-8912
4406 W. Reno Avenue s Oklahoma City, OK 73107 s Phone: 405-947-0400
america, death, disasterous, earth, faith, help, Okinawa, Oklahoma, prayer, rain, sleep, storms, weather

Erin’s Tour of Oklahoma

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I know we’ve all been curious about all the crazy weather patterns across the country…but a tropical storm in Oklahoma?? Really??

This weekend I slept as wind thrashed at my windows. Thunder ripped through the air so loud, it sounded like my roof was coming off! I thought, ‘Good we’re getting some rain from the storm down south!’ I never imagined it would re-group and the eye wall would relocated over central Oklahoma!

Who knew a tropical storm could hit the heartland with so much punch. I felt like I was back on the island of Okinawa during a mild typhoon. Tragically… lives were lost during the flooding, and many homes and businesses were completely damaged.

Does anyone wonder why so many things are happening in our world? Catastrophe after castastrophe keep hitting our world, and I pray it prompts people to seek God’s word for comfort. I only pray in times like these that people not only get the support they need, but the Christian outreach they need to lead them to the Lord…or lead them back to their faith.

Please pray for those in Oklahoma who’ve lost everything. Please pray for the families of those who’ve lost loved ones to the storm. Thank you!

appreciation, blessings, blogging, Christianity, faith, faithful fridays, family bonds, life, son, spirituality

Faithful Fridays 8-17-07

Wow!  Here it is 10:30 p.m. on Friday and this is the first time I’ve had to sit and post my Faithful Fridays.  Where did today go?  Where does time go?

In the blink of an eye it all passes.  Our time here on earth is so fleeting, and no one knows it better than the ones that look in the mirror and wonder who the old woman is staring back at her!  Life is precious and to be cherished!

So today’s Faithful Friday is just a reminder to have simple faith that God will lead you down the right path, if you ask Him.  Life slips by before we know it.  One day we’re graduating from high school, and with in a breath we’re watching our own child taking that journey into the real world.  I know my four year old will be 24 in an instant.  In some ways he already is 🙂

The longer I live the more I understand how simple life really gets.  It all boils down to asking God for guidance and wisdom in every step, so that when I’m in my golden years I won’t feel like I’ve wasted any of it!