Thursday, October 25, 2012

"Un-OCD"ing My Heart

I like order.  I like things in their place.  Organization makes me happy.  For clarification, "liking" order and "achieving" order are two completely different things.

One of the places that my tendencies creep in is when it comes to paying bills.  More specifically when it comes to tithing and giving.  I like to write one check for the "full amount" - whatever that may be for the month.  Disclaimer: I'm talking specifically about tithing and giving... We help as often and as much as we can if someone is in need of food, clothes, things we call "life" and that doesn't have a category in the budget. :)

Here lately my heart has been so broken with stories from the world.  A woman who gives all of herself and often risks her life to rescue young girls sold into the sex trade...  She took a 3 year old from one of those places! Oh Jesus have mercy.  A man who's heart was completely taken when he visited Sudan on a "missions trip", and now has helped build the biggest orphanage in Southern Sudan to house orphans and the "lucky" children who haven't been abducted by the Lord's Resistance Army.

I often fall in to the trap of being so overwhelmed by the horrific things that go on in the world that I don't do anything.  The other struggle I find myself wrestling with is that sometimes I feel like because we can't give much, it doesn't really make a difference, so until we can give more financially, it's not really urgent.  But that's a problem. A big problem, I know.  Is the story of the widow's mite ringing in your ears like it is mine?  God has not called me to wait until we are out of debt and can write grandeur checks to 17 non-profits each week.

I recently came across the quote: "Do for one what you wish you could do for everyone" (my Google searching shows that this quote is credited to Andy Stanley, but I don't know for sure?)  This quote has plagued my thoughts for several months now, and just last night I talked with my husband and shared that I want to start giving to several organizations/ministries even if it's a smaller amount, rather than giving to just one place each month.  My twenty dollars here and there can make a difference.

I still want to travel every inch of the world where there are orphans and bring every one home...  I want to personally make sure that no child goes hungry, no child is abused ever again, no child goes their whole (sometimes too short) life without knowing love.  My fragile heart is in pieces that this happens in this world, and I want nothing more than my Jesus to come back so there will be no more tears and pain and hurt.

Although I can't do much, doing something is better than being overwhelmed and sitting on my hands.

So I've made a change in my convicted heart.  Do for one what you wish you could do for everyone.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Emmalyn is TWO!!

Emmalyn had such a wonderful time at her birthday party!  It was hard to keep her attention to open all of her gifts - she kept getting up and running around.  She is such a people person!  Being around others just fuels her tank (very unlike her mother).  :)  Two laughter and joy-filled years and here we are...

Emmalyn, you are the light in your mom and dad's life.  You always have us laughing, whether it's your dancing skills, your Chinese jibberish you speak so seriously to us, or just being your goofy self.  We love your adventurous spirit and hope you rub off on your little sibling.  We love you to the moon and back, Emmer Bug.

{cut-out paper mustaches with tape on the back, and pink bows tied onto safety pins stuck on a strip of magnet}
{"trix-crispy" treats, yellow wedding mints and lemon bars (thanks Cindy!), strawberry lemonade cake, frosted snicker doodle cookies, raspberry lemonade and tea}
 The party was "Seuss Inspired".  I'm not a fan of themes, so there weren't any cats in hats or green eggs, but I love the way Seuss' trees and flowers look, so that's where the pink and yellow color scheme came.  I made pink tissue paper flowers and used yellow and green crepe paper to give the illusion of stems.  The "flowers" on the table were styrafoam balls with pink feather boas hot-glued to them.  I spray painted dowel rods yellow and wrapped green electrical tape around them.  I then drilled holes in a 2x4 we had in the garage, draped a piece of fabric that I already had on top of it, and stuck the flowers in.  I'm guessing I spent less than $50 for all of the decorations/plates/napkins/etc; it was convenient that I already had a decent amount of the materials needed for the decorations. ;)

{pre-party with great grandpa}
{horrible picture of more decorations}
{the sweetest birthday girl ever!}

{gift from Papa and Grandma Cici}
{getting ready to reveal the gender of little sibling!}
{it's a boy!}

Sunday, October 14, 2012

WIW: On Hold

Not sure if I have any regular readers since I'm a not-so-regular blogger.  But if you happen to remember a few months ago I was trying to be accountable to myself and post a Weigh-In-Wednesday.  Well that didn't last too long because of this...
How about we pick up WIW in about a year? :) 

Oh btw, baby is due 3/13/13.

A Quaint Little Kitchen

I found inspiration on Pinterest over a year ago for an adorable little play kitchen made from an old tv stand/side table.  Emmalyn wasn't even a year yet, so I knew I had to wait a while to make it for her. We decided that her second birthday would be the perfect time!

We already had this tv stand...  I had it when I lived at home, then we moved it to the family lake house where it lived for a few years.  When we sold the lake house, I realized it would be perfect for the play kitchen!

 E spent the night with grandparents one evening, and me and hubs got started!  We got a spray paint with the color name "Key Lime".  The cap of the can looked like a fun color, but once it was all painted it was just a wee bit too bright!  So we sanded it down and got a more subtle (but still fun!) bluish-green color (this time we got a quart to brush on, not spray paint). 

the middle divider has a nice detail because it was the shelf part of the stand
much better color!

 And the finished product!

Here's the breakdown:
TV stand - free
Paint - $16 ($3 can of spray paint that we painted over with a $13 quart of primer/paint 2-in-1)
Plumbing J-Trap for the faucet - free (thanks to my dad having a few on-hand, they're usually about $10)
Bowl for sink - free (found in my kitchen cabinet)
Handles for sink - free
Extra wood for doors/shelves - free (from our garage)
Stove knobs - $13 (Eek! My plan was to find some retro knobs from DAV or the junk yard, but I dropped the ball and had to grab them from the hardware store last minute)
Red knob for microwave - free (found at my grandparent's house)
Handle for stove - $.50 (from Habitat ReStore... it was ugly 70's gold, so I spray-painted it)
Towel "rack" on side - $.50 (from Habitat ReStore... it's actually a long drawer pull)
Two-prong hook on the other side - $2.50
Black and silver craft paint for details - $1.75
Antique/vintage curtain (and rod) - free (found at my grandparents house)
Misc hardware (hinges, screws, etc) - about $5
Adorable personalized apron, pot holder, tea towel, and chef hat - free (a birthday gift from last year)

TOTAL: right under $40

Completely worth it for my daughter to have a cute little kitchen as opposed to the plastic-molded things they make nowadays (that you probably couldn't get for $40 used!) :)