We closed on the house today! So exciting, our very first house! If you don't see me blogging much here, look for me in Home Depot.
I'll try and post pictures soon!
Soli Deo Gloria
Wednesday, August 31, 2005
We closed on the house today! So exciting, our very first house! If you don't see me blogging much here, look for me in Home Depot.
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 9:26 PM
Monday, August 29, 2005
Tonight after dinner we sang Psalm 105 which you may recall sings of the wonders of God through the plagues and the freeing of the Israelites from slavery. I began to think about how wonderful it must have felt for those people who had prayed and prayed for deliverance from their slavery and were finally blessed with freedom. How thankful and joyful they probably were. I realized that these people were probably at times extremely frustrated at their condition - to say the least. They cried out to God for their freedom and they probably wondered what was God's purpose in keeping them in their bondage. What possible reason did God have for enslaving them to this Godless Pharoah who was often times cruel. We have the benefit and luxury of hindsight which the Israelites did not. We can now see the providence of God through their plight and the glory of the whole ordeal. It makes me realize how many times I wonder why God is doing something to or with me, and I'm encouraged to perserve in my faith because of what happened in Egypt so long ago. Maybe, just maybe, God would have me go through a trial for the encouragement of another of His children six thousand years from now. I can rest in the promise that everything is for my good, but surely, even if it is just for the benefit of a saint generations down the line who is sitting at her dinner table surrounded by children and not understanding at the moment the full benefit of her many "blessings" (who have just completely littered the floor with food for the third time in a day :) ) then surely it is a good thing, eh?
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 6:34 PM
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
This squirrel was running around outside on the patio when he suddenly just decided to take a break. (Big, heavy, jealous sigh). Well, I'm not that jealous. I get to sit on the couch between my two handsome boys who take turns giving me kisses on the cheek and laughing when I squeal with delight! For ten minutes at least! Okay, not jealous at all!
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 4:51 PM
Tuesday, August 23, 2005
When I was single, I used to love getting off from work, and going to go exercise then eating dinner. That was my favorite time of day. Now that I have kids, the hours from about 4-7p.m. often feel like the valley of the shadow of death. I am shocked with the struggle of getting from naptime to dinner. The kids are whiney and difficult to say the least, I feel like I could fall face first into a blissful sleep, and the clock ticks away the minutes like it's in quicksand. Probably most surprising of all, is that I now learn, five years into this deal, that I am not alone!!! In fact, most moms will tell you that this is the hardest part of any day. All I can say to that is, shhheww! I thought I was a nutcase there for a while! Sometimes we women can do a real disservice to other women by pretending that we're not struggling. In order to save face, we inevitably can discourage other moms who are going through what we are, by making them think that "it is just them." While I think it is good, to keep trying when we struggle, being dishonest in that time can often do more harm than good. Well, I'll write more about that later. Dear hubby would like a help-meet now! God bless, all mommies in their darkest hour too!
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 9:51 PM
Friday, August 19, 2005
I turned 31 years old today and to celebrate, my kids all drew me cards which were nothing short of fantastic! We also went out for pizza together and had a great time. We got a few stares as usual but also a nice comment about how adorable our kids are - very observant people! It was a nice day, although I must admit I did fight the urge when changing poopy diapers or cleaning up spilled cereal, to not feel put out simply because it was my birthday. I think it's that entitlement that so many women are taught to feel, that I'm trying to work out of me. Great day - blessings, celebration, and sanctification!
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 8:32 PM
Thursday, August 18, 2005
I think this says much of what I am going toward.
It's not so much the specific occupation of our time as it is the reason we are doing that. If we go to the grocery store by ourselves are we sinning? Yes if it is a means of escaping "those kids that are driving me nuts." Not necessarily if it is our goal to glorify God and love others as ourselves. Going to a bible study looks holy, but if we are doing that because we want to get away from putting the kids to bed another night or we think we've "earned" a night off, then our motives are impure and thus sinful.
I don't think that if we are truly trying to love God in everything that we do, we will even want to or feel the need to get away from our families as much. If we are truly loving the kids as God would have us then we would be consistent discipling and patient and kind all the time anyway, thus, the kids would be better behaved, thus we wouldn't feel like we are being suffocated all the time...
Now to attempt humility, I'll share the truth about myself - tonight my husband put the kids to bed while I sat on the couch watching HGTV and eating my birthday present - chocolate! (the other birthday present is my house so I couldn't eat that) ;) It had been a pretty tiring day with my five year old crying through her handwriting lesson today - she ain't the only one who needed a nap! So, I was really struggling with that "I deserve this break" attitude. Of course we don't deserve rewards or breaks from our work, it is a mercy of God that ironically we wouldn't necessarily need if we weren't sinful creatures to begin with. Now, my time would probably have been much better spent listening to a sermon, singing psalms, praying, reading my bible, etc. But there again, that's why I'm so thankful for what Christ has done for me. For when I am weak, You were strong.
I will never, ever get it right while here on this earth. I will always struggle with selfishness, laziness, gluttony, etc. But, Lord willing, I will keep trying, and since His mercies are renewed in the morning, I will go to bed now! God bless, all!
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 10:08 PM
I tend to be a competitive person by nature and love a good argument until I start to lose. Well, wouldn't you know it but these blogs, have trapped me into some debates. Yes, that's it! It's the blog's fault! Here's the background on that:
So, after a conference with Steve and Teri Maxwell in Austin, I've been thinking alot about the use of my time in particular my free time. The Maxwell's maintain that if they can't do something as a family, they don't do it. Many times I've been anxious to go and do something by myself so that I can become refreshed. Well, things didn't go to plan in that I came back refreshed but too soon was ready for some more alone time - as in an hour later :).
Well, so this got me thinking what is actually for my good and for God's glory? I don't think "me time" is it. I'm not sure where my thoughts will meandor to on this subject, but just to let you know - they're in the works and you'll be hearing more from me on this topic soon. I pray that I will keep in mind the freedom of Christ and the love of God as I hopefully come to some conclusions on this. No laws unless God has said it is so, I promise! Don't want any grumblings about Pharisees and antinomians here ;)
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 4:31 PM
Sunday, August 14, 2005
He gives grace to the humble, but lowers the proud.
My five year old is great! Last night before bed, she surprised me by cleaning my room for me. I was so thrilled and even thought, "Hey, I must be doing pretty good with her. Like I am solely responsible for how wonderful she is - yeah,right! Well, then God reminds me that first of all she was probably just trying to get out of going to bed and gets away with it because of my wonderful disciplining skills, and secondly that my room was a wreck in the first place because of my wonderful house keeping skills. Then this morning, I'm touching up my husband's trousers with the iron and my kids gather around me in awe - "Mom! What's that?! What are you doing?!" Apparently this was something they'd never seen before - one more dose of humility for good measure. :)
Thank you, Lord, for your mercy and patience that You remind me ever so gently of my complete dependence on You, and not my own performance.
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 10:24 AM
Saturday, August 13, 2005
I can't say I've always been the most disciplined reader. Many times I'd rather pick up some fluff novel than read Van Til. It wasn't always the case. Before I got married, I was right into the heavy stuff with Augustine, Bahnsen, and Edwards being my top picks, and maybe an occassional Sproul to lighten things up. Since then the last few years have been like the Parenting section at Barnes and Noble, or maybe Covenant Media Foundation instead :). Let's see there's been Babywise, and What to Expect..., several labor and birth books, Shepherding Your Childs Heart, To Train up a Child, Standing on the Promises, The Fruit of Her Hands, etc. etc. So, now as most of my books are still packed away in my Grandmother's garage, and being that our book budget is more homeschool focused at the moment, I find myself really reading some marshmallowy material. Right now it's Marriage to a Difficult Man - the story of Jonathon and Sarah Edwards, and a novel by Beverly Lewis(I'm almost too embarassed to admit that one), and Created to be His Helpmeet. That last one is about as deep as it's gonna get right now. However, the kids are growing older, more able to discuss things like theology - even though it usually is something like "God sees you hit your brother even if mommy doesn't" sort of thing. But I know the questions will be coming and I want to have an answer ready for them. Not to mention anyone else who I might pass in the streets. Now that I have the scheduling babies down, and I don't need a labor/delivery book yet, and my husband says I'm the perferct homemaker ;), I would like to begin relearning some of the defense of the faith. But that might just have to wait until I finish my Saxon 1's teacher manual and the Do It Yourself Fix it Book for our new home. I know that my focus on my children and my home is part of my calling, but that's only part of it. I will want them to be able to answer for their faith as well, and if I'm gonna be their teacher... well, better start hitting those books.
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 9:27 PM
Friday, August 12, 2005
Well, the business of buying a house, come to find out, is very time consuming. So far, we've signed bunches of papers, and checks :), had the house inspected, the air conditioner consequently cleaned out, and are now on our way to getting it appraised, and finally closing on the 31st of this month. The inspection went remarkably well for a fifty year old house. Like I said the a/c needed a bit of tweaking, there are a couple of leaks under the house that need a quick fix, and the house needs to be grounded - insert a sad little joke about it not being a floating house, please. The inspector was very thorough and spent almost four hours poking, crawling, climbing, sweating, and of course inspecting. The good points are that it has an excellent foundation and has shown almost none of the effects of being fifty years old - yahoo!
So, as this was a good assessment of our house, I think the whole process of purchasing a home is a good assessment of myself. Being Mr. and Mrs. Steady - respects to Debi Pearl - my husband and I find it very labor intensive to actually make a decision on dinner let alone such a large purchase. I wonder if this is a wise use of our resources, are we jumping in too quickly, is it as good an investment as we think, etc., etc... It has been quite stressful for me, and to be honest, I've noticed some cracks in my foundation. My roof looks like it might let in some water if a heavy storm comes through. Maybe even some faulty wiring. Now this is about the time I start showing my true colors to God, and acting like the spoiled adopted brat I am. It amazes me, oftentimes, that He doesn't just strike me with a bolt of lightening and be done with me once and for all. I imagine Him flicking this little pest of his arm and me flying through the air, splatting against the wall! But then my image of God is usually so distorted from the truth. In actuality He has shown Himself to be most longsuffering, slow to anger, and abounding, I say again, ABOUNDING in grace. Just when I think I couldn't do anything to make Him hate me more, He shows me incredible love and mercy and treats me like His very own child, not an outsider. He even encourages and heartens me. I may not be very much better for this experience of buying a house, but as He said even this is for my good, and I see that my foundation has shifted back, a little closer to the right place. And that dear husband He gave me ended up being a handy level with which He straightened me out - who knew?!
As for our silly little house on Cedar Point Dr., it will eventually fall down, rot, and turn once again into rocks and dust. As for the mansion my Father is building for me, it will forever shine like gold. Praise be to God!
By the way, I promise not to use anymore bad house puns for a long while :)
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 8:27 PM
Tuesday, August 02, 2005
Yep, you read right! We are in the process of buying our very first house, and I'm so excited!! The realtor called today to tell us the good news that our offer has gone through and now we've got to get an inspector and surveyor, and a home warranty, and home owner's insurance - or is that the same thing?, and about a billion other things that someone's gonna have to hold my hand through. Well, anyway, just wanted to share my excitement with you all before I start complaining about the stress of it - it's a 1950's fixer upper so I'm sure there will be much to complain about :)
Posted by Duchess of Fife at 9:58 PM