Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Ugly Creation

I've made several rag blankets but this one just turned out really ugly. Not that my other ones are that great but, this one tops the worse of the bunch. The material, although flannel, didn't rag right. My X's are not even and its a little bulky. However, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder and Annah says it is "beautiful" and that she loves it so therefore she may have my ugly creation if she so desires. I was making it for my next girl baby placement but, no way would I wrap a baby in this. My lovely 4 year old can use it for her dolls or for her tent or for whatever, maybe the dog can lay on it.
So, its off to Hobby Lobby for another buying spree of material. Maybe I'll stick with cottons. Someday I desire to be good enough to sell a blanket on Ebay. That is a dream. :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

More Feasting

Just when I thought I was getting a grip on my added, unexpected weight gain we had a wonderful, marvelous, fabulous surprise feast at Uncle Julios ( Delicious Mexican restaurant in Allen,TX.) for 2 dear dear dear friends, Teresa and Nici.
They each got a plate of Sophapillas- (oh gosh how on earth do you spell that????) with candles and a bowl of honey. By this time I was just too far gone stuffed to enjoy more. I had a huge giant plate of Spinach Quesadillas plus, I had probably had 2 baskets of tortillas and Uncle Julios famous hickory salsa prior so I was really filled up to the top.

Blowing out their Candles! This was just so fun to be with friends and eat t00000 much food.

One of my favorite songs: Life means so much . (Link goes to a Youtube video)

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls for he has no one to help him up.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 New King James Version

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Forbidden Fruit

Forbidden Fruit.

I jog about 6 miles a day, every day, 7 days a week. Usually I can eat anything I want to at any time on any day but suddenly... suddenly I packed on a few pounds out of nowhere. Probably my afternoon day trip to the Cheesecake Factory with friends and then the Mexi-Go resteraunt with Tiffany plus Chili's with Paul literally pushed me over my limit of being able to eat and eat and eat. At first I thought, no problem... it will come off as soon as I get back to my normal eating... but no. It has not come off and I am a bit troubled by it. I've gone back to my ever faithful fat gram counting diet ( no more than 20 - 30 grams of fat per day ) and loads of water in addition to my jogging in the Texas heat and sweating like a bullfrog... not that I know if bullfrogs sweat but, I imagine so. I am amazed after each jogging trip at how much sweat comes off me. My entire clothing attire is drenched, soaked.

The day the scale revealed this to me is the day Paul brought home this luscious box of 8 Golden Drumsticks of pure eating delight. This has been going on for days now. The temptation in my freezer. Sometimes I sit in my big comfy chair at night and begin to drift off into a dream like state thinking of those little bitty scattered nuts all over the frozen chocolate nestled on vanilla icecream on a crunchy yummy cone ...with just the perfect bit of chocolate buried in the little bottom part of the cone and how delightful it would be to go eat just one.... then I realize I should probably rush the box to my neighbors house just to rid myself of the temptation but, so far, its still sitting in my freezer with all 8 cones still intact.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Chopping blocks

I was sewing together pieces for a rag quilt yesterday and tried to cut some thread and sliced a chunk of my finger right off. It hurts just as badly as it looks and it bled like crazy. Determined to keep sewing, I bandaged myself up and when I sat down to sew there was the missing chunk of my skin.
This should make a good size rag blanket for a baby girl. I love the pinks and browns. Rag blankets are my favorite to make because they require very little precision.

Love this huge squash! My neighbor brought it over from her garden. I will slice it up... hopefully without chunks of my flesh included... and cook it for dinner! Nummy Yummy!

Love this song:
Tears of the Saints

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Brown Recluse, Me & God

I'd like to share the story of when I was bitten by a brown recluse spider.
It was an article published and is now online here. The photos are of my bite personally.

It was a horrible time. I couldn't sit. I couldn't drive. I was in constant and tremendous pain at the site of the bite ( my bum ).

It was very disruptive on my life.

The day after the bite, after a night of tremendous and unbelievable pain (I am deathly allergic to wasp stings so I imagine I handled being bitten horribly in my body... my body reaction was extreme and horrendous. The doctor told me I probably would of died had I not used an old nebulizer my son had used for asmtha like symptoms. I could not breath within hours of being bitten and I just grabbed it up and put ...I think expired even... medicine in it and used it over and over. I was home alone and at the time, was completely unaware of what I would soon be facing) we went to the doctor and not realizing how long and painful and debilitating the journey would be, I accepted a placement of a newborn baby girl. Most foster infants go through withdrawals and of course you give up sleep to feed a baby all night... I had no idea what I was getting into with the after effects of the bite and so I took the baby girl... looking back... God's mercy was great. Out of all our babies... this little one slept all night from the time she came home... through my bouts of throwing up in the night and being extremely sick in the night for months, she slept through it. She was mellow, unbelievably easy and I know that God knew that had I had 'typical' drug exposed baby... I would not of been able to continue to care for the baby during that time so I have no doubt He orchestrated a placement for us of a baby that needed a family and needed a safe place and since it was our home at that time... it was a baby that was what you would call very easy, very happy and who unbelievably slept all night.

I learned alot from this bite experience. Most of what I took away from that nightmarish experience is between God and myself..its personal but as Laura explains in her blog--- it is that though the experience, I learned so much, I learned the nearness of God and I also learned about His Holiness, mercy, goodness, kindness and my faith increased... and I would not change it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

There are things I am feeling troubled about but they seem small compared to other things going on in our world today. Small compared to other things in general that people are going through but yet, in my space and in my bubble...they are things I have to deal with.

Alan is applying to go to a YWAM base deep in the mountains in Costa Rica! First thing I thought when I saw the base was, mememememememememe, I want to go too! I asked Paul to think about it and we both kinda laughed because.. my way of thinking is... lets sell everything and go!!! Yipeee! But he is the stable side of the marriage...the part that yields to caution and reason and reminds me of our daughter going to college in a couple of weeks and other factors that must be considered. But didn't Jesus just say "Go"... I think so.

However, I will yield. But, I am excited to go and visit for a month or so and go into the mountains and minister to the tribes there. Even though we don't even know if they will be accepted, its still something exciting to see could happen!!! I LOVE YWAM.

I want to lead a fruitful life. I do not want to have a life where its all about me being blessed with goodies and things for me and mine. I want us to be active in our lives for God. I roll my eyeballs at those who may caution me against thinking I can earn God... or that I have to buy my salvation... puhleeeze. I know that. I know you can't do that.

Regardless, God is my Creator. He has us humans here for a reason. There is a battle going on between good and evil. I don't know exactly what it all looks like but I know things for sure... . there is poverty, sickness, pain, turmoil and people who do not know Christ. I know we have been commissioned to help orphans, widows, spread the Good News, love, give, etc... thats how I want to live my life. Nothing less.

I get restless just piddling around.

I need to be doing. And I have found that no matter how much I try to give my daily life to God, the more I do that, the more He fills my life and my heart with joy, happiness, laughter and love. So I guess its selfish because really... the more I try to give, the more I am given back in my heart and knowledge and nearness to God. When I am busy with my own things... I find myself overwhelmed, tired etc... but when I am walking it out with God... energy, peace, joy... peace peace peace... can't trade that for anything of this world.

Friday, July 17, 2009

The day of the burst bubble

Yesterday was just a happy day. It was a quite, relaxing, happy day. It started off with Annah and I walking down by the lake and talking about God and me praying about everything I could think of and Annah interjecting with prayers for the chickens and dogs and bugs . It was very nice. The early morning TX weather had a cool breeze from the lake and it felt amazing. The waves were swooshing, birds were was so beautiful.

About 9 in the evening my mom called me and told me my dad was in the Emergency Room.

Thats the moment my little happy bubble popped. Its not that my dad was having a heart attack or actually anything real extremely serious... it was serious but, not seemingly life threatening but definitely needed attention.

During that time of my mom telling me he was in the ER and the next few seconds my happy little world fell silent. I went up to my room in silence and did not even tell Paul what was going on because I was just very much in a state of feeling inward and wanting to go talk to God because He is the only one that can fix anything whether it be by peace surpassing all understanding or moving a mountain, He is the only one who is able.... I just wanted to sit down and I wanted to tell God that I know that things happen in this life, people get sick, people get hurt, people die but if its okay, I'd rather it not happen to me. How about if He just does something so that I can just be happy and not have to feel the pain of fear or loss or sickness or anything and that how about if everyone I love stays healthy and our big bubbles stay afloat and they never ever ever get popped? How about that?

Things change so fast. In a second everything can change. In a moment, a blink, an entire life can be changed, ended ... an entire life... life style...just ones very life existence in their own little corner of the world, floating in their one moment in time a persons entire world can be shattered. The tiniest of pin pricks can pop the most amazingly translucent, big, bubbly bubble.

There is one thing I know will never change. Never. That is God. I may not understand my life or the events that happen all around me but I do understand that God is God. I do understand that He is Creator. He is Holy. He is Wonderful, Amazing, Mighty, Beautiful, Great, Magnificent, Beyond my comprehensions. That is what I know for sure even when I don't know anything else. God never changes and He will always surround me with His peace when I ask and always bring me into the presence and fullness of His joy.

You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Deceptive Views

On our 22cd anniversary, July 6th, Paul and I took our canoe out on the lake with Annah who was well equipped in her mega body life jacket that keeps her completely afloat and her head above water. Tested, tried, true.

As we paddled to right smack in the middle of the lake I told my dear husband that I would like to jump in and swim to shore. He laughed. I proclaimed I have always wanted to do that and I was going to do just that. He then realized I was serious and said 'no way'. I was like 'way'. He was saying No,N O spells No... at this point I am thinking about the fact that as a good Christian wife I need to heed my husbands voice and not jump in but I sure wanted too. I began to feel like he was keeping me from doing something I really wanted to do but I didn't jump in... although I sure was close to just laughing and jumping in.

Every few moments as we kept paddling I would say "Okay, NOW can I jump in and swim". And he would adamantly tell me NO. He said he didn't want to lose me and I'm thinking... well thats kinda dramatic ya think? He said the shore is not as close as it looks because it did indeed looked like it was right there. He gave me reasons such as... I'm a jogger not a swimmer and its not as easy as it looks and even in Triathlons they only swim 1 mile distances and the shore was atleast 2 or 3 miles away and such and such.

Surely jogging 6 miles a day qualifies me to swim a mile or so to shore????

I can't actually swim but I can tread water and I kinda doggy paddle around. I envisioned me gently swimming by the canoe... paddling and treading and it would be so lovely.

Finally, closer to shore, close to where I was like Psssht.... piece a cake... he said to go ahead and jump in...well not actually jump because I would tip over the whole boat but, I slid in.

Not even 5 minutes... not even... I was doing my doggy paddling moves and it was not easy... I mean, the water looked gentle and calm from in the canoe but on the water I felt currents... and I was paddling hard to get to I worked up a sweat and when I looked up it looked like I hadn't even swam an inch and to my utter horror, the canoe was not right next to me. Paul could not possibly keep it right next to me in the current and with me not helping paddle... he was doing his best to steer it to shore but it was venturing further to the left.

Out of absolutely nowhere utter panic came over me. All the sudden I needed footing... I needed something to hang onto and there was nothing. I felt so footing, nothing to hold and I panicked.. . I was so vulnerable out there like that. It doesn't take long to slip into the lake an not be found. I told Paul I needed back in the boat.. he realizes I am in a panic fear mode so he begins to tell me to try and calm down and he is trying to get the canoe to me which seems like forever. I prayed, prayed, prayed and kept my head above water.

What I had NOT thought about was even remotely the possibility that I could not make it to shore. That seemed impossible... of course I could make it to shore. Not making it was not even an option.

Therefore, the thought of if I couldn't make it or needed to and could not get to the boat did not cross my mind and therefore the thought of if Paul needed to get into 'save' me would mean that he would have to leave Annah in the boat and the boat would drift far away and she would then be terrified. These are things I had not thought about because the possibility that I would be in that predicament was not a possibility but there I was... in that predicament

...but at that moment I was not going under and at the moment I was staying afloat albeit in still a panic and flailing around.

So, finally he gets the canoe to me and I can't get in without tipping them over so I just clung on to the side. Canoes are slow especially with only one person paddling and dead weight hanging on although I did kick....

By the time we got to shore and my feet touched entire body was trembling and not just my body, I could feel my heart shaking. Not pounding...shaking. I have never felt that before. Never felt my internal organs shake although I have heard the saying "that made my liver quiver"...I guess thats what it means.

So, what did I learn from this? There always needs to be a lesson learned.

*I learned that objects, while being viewed from the lake, are not as close as they appear.
*My husband is wise.

*I can be wrong.
*I can be a complete idiot.
*I will never attempt that again.
*I like the ground.

"I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go." - Abraham Lincoln

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Church Homeless

I love my family!

We have been church homeless for a few months now. We had belonged to an amazing little country church for 10 years with very close friendships but when the pastor retired...the flock did scatter.

It wasn't the same in that little country church and we decided we would take that opportunity of change to move on and that we would go to a multicultural church so that Annah wasn't always surrounded by white folk all the time.

Since then, we have still been looking. I feel like someone who never married and is getting older and older and more set in my much so that I can't find anyone now because I am so particular about what I am looking for.

We walked into a church today ... they have amazing charisma, energy and passion in their worship... I like that. The people were friendly. It was delightfully multicultural.

I like expressions of worship but nothing extraordinary... I like to see people raising their hands up high, I like clapping. I like to see an occasional banner waving. I like crying. I like happy. I like for people to be able to express tears or joy but I like it to be reverent too.

I don't like alot of glitter or money being obviously spent on things for show or look ... I like alot of missions and outreach and strong bonds of friendship and unity within a church.

I dont' want a lot of money being poured into the church look. People are starving out there in the world.

The church we visited today had quite a few big giant movie screens.... as a matter of fact, its sister church in Carrolton had a guest speaker and so they just showed him on our screen as well... kinda like watching tv preaching at a theater. I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about that... but the message was so good. I just need to chill out a bit. Settle down and form relationships, get involved. I hope I can do that. We have been looking for about 4 months now and I am wanting to hang my hat somewhere.

I could of never seen myself settling into a big church... with big screens TVs... but, I am beginning to feel more open to it now that I am so hungry for Christian connection. To find a group to belong to ... to love them and be loved back. But can I get over those big screen tvs????

Psalm 71:8-“Let my mouth be filled with your praise and with your honor all the day.”

Thursday, July 9, 2009

"Let us think often that our only business in this life is to please God.
Perhaps all besides is but folly and vanity."
... Brother Lawrence

I am sitting here sipping on hot coffee. I like it piping hot. I have my hair in a bun and a Pug at my feet. Annah is still sleeping at 7:20 AM...probably because she just could not seem to fall asleep last night.

What will this day bring? Our last foster baby went home. We are open now for a new call. After having 3 babies in a row who suffered with colic... I almost hesitated...okay, thats not true... I really really hesitated to call CPS and make them aware to have us on the 'open' list.

It would really be easier to not foster... but God did pour into my heart a love to do this and I do not want to just hide it under a bushel. People love babies and I absolutely do... I love to nurture them and care for them and I could happily...if not lazily... rock them all day in pure joy.

However, most foster infants have been drug exposed and are premature. Therefore, either they will sleep alot or cry alot or both. They get headaches and withdrawals and while you instinctively and naturaly have a heart to hold them and love them... the crying is shrill and sometimes a constant shrill throughout the house for hours and hours.

So, therefore, I did hesitate this time to be on the open list because I know that once the bundle arrives... I have no idea what life will be like. If the baby is in pain, temperamental, colicky... it means I am more or less home bound for months with no escape from the crying. Its a choice. I do not have to do this. And this time, I chose to continue because I want to live my life before God and I don't want to be empty handed. I know I can skid by on His love but I really want to make Him happy and not just be a taker. I really do not have any other things in my life that move me so much as a baby... I can't think of anything else I want to do, not really. So I consider it a gift of God and I need to fully live it.

I'd still like to try out Panama and live life there, taking in the children who live as orphans without a big ole CPS organization to oversee them. But right now...this feels like my only gift...the gift to want to do it. Sometimes in the midst of the inconsolable constant crying I might say... "after this one we are closing our home"... but in the end, I won't do that. Not as long as its in my heart to nurture. Sometimes I ask God to open another door to ministry that doesn't require 24/7 attention and that I am still being active but, where I can come home, close the door and be alone .... but so far, this is the heart He gave me and I plan on using it until I just can't. :)

I thought about telling the caseworker to put us on the open list but make sure its a baby that sleeps and doesn't cry. Ha! :)

I've probably tried every single gripe water, colic cure out on the market including the stuff imported from Germany.

I have bought all the 'miracle' swaddle blankets claiming to be the cure although none worked so now I found one called "Woombie" that I am getting...maybe that will be the miracle! :) I have every sling, swing, gadget or gizmo that is said to cure colic. White noise, nature noise...all kinds of noise CD's to play. But, the truth is.... babies cry and sometimes they cry and cry and cry and lets not be gentle...lets confess its not really a cry....its a shrill. :)

So today I ask my God...if there is a baby that needs to be identified and rescued and brought into a safe place for awhile, let it be here. Amen!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

God create in me a pure heart and renew always a steadfast spirit within me. Psalms 52:10

God is good ...all the time. He never changes. Hope...always rising... !

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Newsletter /Alan in Panama

Greetings from Panama!

Praise God for always moving and working with us in every aspect of our lives! Not just here in Panama but all over the world, I recently had the blessing to go to a conference in Orlando, Florida, and was able to hear testimonies of what God is doing in so many different places! It was a wonderful, refreshing time! Karmy and I are working very hard on a trip to Texas in the next month or two if possible, we want to visit you all and catch up on what God is doing. I know it has been a long time since we have seen each other, and that has been because of my own Visa issues, I was not allowed to leave Panama while I was in the process of getting my residence visa. However that Visa (Praise God!) recently was approved and I am now a legal resident in Panama! I am free to leave the country at any time. Karmy has been approved for a ten year visa to the U.S., and we are working on Elias U.S. Citizenship which should be complete in the near future. Once that is finished, we will be coming very soon to fellowship with all of you!

God has been moving in such amazing ways, it is wonderful! We have been speaking in several campaigns to the lost, and seen many Salvations & Miracles!

One young woman, the daughter of a Guaymi Pastor was healed of cancer, and this has been confirmed by two entirely shocked doctors.

Another woman at one of our campaigns arrived with a broken ankle, it was swollen and she couldn't move it. When we laid hands on her, the swelling instantly went down before our eyes, and she was totally healed! She was able to walk and move normally. We still marvel at the wonderful power of the name of Jesus!

We have also continued handing out tracts and speaking to people on the streets as we always do, in the past couple of months we handed out several thousand tracts. We tend to have a limited supply but we hand out everything we have, as often as we have it, and thousands are getting the Gospel given to them!

God is doing so much, it would take far too much to write in these newsletters; however I hope that when we arrive to Texas we will be able to spend time with you and share more.

If you don't know we have a website now, and we try to update as often as possible, but sometimes it is a while before we are able to get any new videos up because of lack of time.

However right now there are several videos you can watch, they are short clips that show a little bit of what we do, and we have several other videos in queue to be uploaded and they will be very soon.

If any of you have any questions, or prayer requests, feel free to email us. Below is our contact information and website info.


I hope to see you all soon, may God bless you in all that you do! Alan

Friday, July 3, 2009

The Cookie Thief

A woman was waiting at an airport one night
With several long hours before her flight
She hunted for a book in the airport shop
Bought a bag of cookies and found a place to drop
She was engrossed in her book but happened to see
That the man beside her as bold as could be
Grabbed a cookie or two from the bag between
Which she tried to ignore to avoid a scene

She munched cookies and watched the clock
As this gutsy cookie thief diminished her stock

She was getting more irritated as the minutes ticked by
Thinking "If I wasn't so nice I'd blacken his eye"
With each cookie she took he took one too
And when only one was left she wondered what he'd do
With a smile on his face and a nervous laugh
He took the last cookie and broke it in half
He offered her half as he ate the other
She snatched it from him and thought "Oh brother
This guy has some nerve and he's also rude
Why he didn't even show any gratitude"
She had never known when she had been so galled
And sighed with relief when her flight was called
She gathered her belongings and headed for the gate
Refusing to look back at the thieving ingrate
She boarded the plane and sank in her seat
Then sought her book which was almost complete
As she reached in her baggage she gasped with surprise
There was her bag of cookies in front of her eyes
"If mine are here" she moaned with despair
"Then the others were his and he tried to share"
"Too late to apologize she realized with grief"
That she was the rude one, the ingrate, the thief