Wednesday, July 23, 2014


When I started blogging 800 posts ago, I had no idea I would still be writing it 7 years later.
I don't think, excepting my marriage, I have ever stuck with anything that long.
I'm great at starting things...finishing? Eh.
But this blog has been different.
In some ways it has kept me on the path of writing,
it has kept me connected to people i love
and other moms and people who just like to laugh at me,
it has chronicled my journey of realizing my dream of being a writer,
my successes and epic fails of motherhood and marriage,
my desires to follow Jesus with my whole life,
my joy and my grief, my growth as a writer and
my sad inability to keep my children from looking like street urchins.
And you have been a part of that journey.
The best part.
With your encouraging words and laughter and shared tears.
And for that I am eternally grateful.
As an octennial celebration,
For the next 8 days, I will be posting your favorite posts and mine,
and giving away 8 free books every day...because free is my favorite.
Share this post on your blog or on FB for a chance to win your choice of one my 3 books.
As a thank you. Because you are the best!
So here we go:

April 17, 2007

supergirl underwear says it all

A couple of years ago, my friend, Melissa, gave me a pair of supergirl underwear as a gag gift...
she thought it was funny....
I, on the other hand, will never turn down a good pair of panties. Who doesn't love new underwear? So I wore them.
One morning I was changing and Jack, who was 4 at the time, walked in on me.
He looked at me for a second and said,
"Mom, your secret identity has been revealed!"
Jack knew. He knew that I would love to be supergirl.
To be more than...
To be unique...
To be excellent in some way....
Able to leap tall laundry in a single bound....
Able to wipe out the forces of evil and keep my house clean...
Able to become the person God created me to be compared to the person I actually am....
Having the guts to chase down my dreams and pursue my destiny 
while looking hot in a red, white and blue unitard ....
By the way, who looks good in a unitard anyway? Especially, paired with boots...
someone has NOT been watching "what not to wear"
but I digress....
so I am a tired supergirl, not quite there yet but believing someday with God's hand on me,
with the love and encouragement of my fellow supergirls and some good chocolate...
I will get there.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

12 reasons that you know you are a mother of boys

1. You have to ask them to take insects outside. Because they don't belong in the living room
or crawling across your bedspread or lounging in your favorite coffee cup on the kitchen table.
2. You can smell their bedroom before you are actually in it.
3. You have to remind them that their toothbrush actually has to touch their teeth for it to count as
"brushing your teeth."
4. You have witnessed a death defying feat of your child jumping off a high object before breakfast.
5. You have heard the words booger, fart, gas, poop, pee and/or burp
incorporated in conversation at the table and think this is normal.
6. You have to set the cat (or dog) free from their evil clutches...several times a day.
7. You want to stick air fresheners up your nose and leave them there for the next 10 years.
8. You wonder if 10 years is long enough to leave your customized nose air fresheners in.
9. You don't know what is on your children's clothes when you put them in the laundry
and you want to keep it that way.
10. You hear laughter coming from behind a closed door and you get nervous.
11. You find that even though you are often tired, worn through, edgy and a little delirious,
that their wet kisses, chubby armed hugs and their whispered words of "I love you, Mom"
make you feel like the luckiest woman in the world.
12. You are a card carrying member of the M.O.B. (Mother of Boys) club and
you wouldn't have it any other way.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

the children are hungry

I currently have an 13 year old boy, an 11 year old boy and an 8 year old boy living in my house.
After having just faced down an salmonella epidemic for the past month,
it seems to have triggered a house wide eating craze.
Meals have become moot. They are eating. A. Lot. All. Day. Long.
The cupboards are bare. Even though I spent $100 on groceries yesterday.
The thirteen year old is inhaling food like it is air. As if it has no effect on him whatsoever.
In the past month he has grown an inch and leap-frogged a whole shoe size.
Yesterday morning, the 11 year old was coming towards me down the hall and
he looked taller.
Taller than he did the day before. Which seemed strange.
We had just measured their heights a week ago but I made him step up to the wall again.
He had grown 3/4 of an inch in 9 days.
9 days.
The 8 year old is taking them all down.
He is about 3 inches taller than the other two were at his age.
Scott had told me yesterday, "You have been spending a lot of money."
I have only been home from Colorado for a week.
I couldn't recall spending a lot of money on anything fun.
We looked over the purchases I had made.
One trip to Home Depot for flowers. 15 trips to the store for food.
Is is possible to eat a flat of nectarines in a day? Yes. Yes, it is.
A box of cereal in one sitting? Yes. A bag of rice crackers in 10 minutes? Again, yes.
I am thinking of plowing up the lawn in the backyard and putting in corn.
For the coming winter. Maybe wheat and oats in the front yard. We need filler.
Last night at dinner, they tried to start eating the food before it made it on the table.
As I was walking toward the table with a bowl of teriyaki meatballs,
the 13 year old tried to intercept me with a fork.
I spoke harshly and pointedly,
"If you touch that meatball, you lose video games for a week."
The 11 year old swooped in with his fork as soon as the bowl hit the table."
"Back away from the meatballs! What is wrong with you?
Everyone has to sit down at the table. Then we will pray. Then we will eat."
I explained this as if we have not been doing this same routine for the entirety of his life.
At that point, Scott took over saying, "I will serve the food."
Not because he was being kind. He just wanted to be sure that he got some meatballs.
It seems if Scott and I want any dinner, we are going to have to fight for it.
It is all making sense now why I found candy bar wrappers in my mom's purse when I
was a child.
The poor woman was starving.
I have started hoarding protein bars. I get angry when the children eat them.
I caught the 8 year old eating one yesterday.
"Those are for Mom. You don't even like them. Remember? You said you don't like them."
He shrugged. "I'm hungry."
It's like a plague of locusts have moved into my house.
They will eat their way through whatever they find.
My parents have some friends who sell organic beef and bison.
I'm thinking our next step is to buy a whole buffalo.
Today is Thursday....maybe it will last until Monday.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

just call me typhoid Mary

Life is crazy. Wild. Unpredictable. And surprising.
I have gone through these last four weeks with a perpetual look of incredulity
on my face.
Eyes wide. Mouth slightly agape. Slightly stunned.
Somehow my oldest son, Jack, became exposed to a virulent strain of salmonella bacteria at
the end of May.
It sent him to the ER for IV fluids from the resulting stomach upset and high fever.
The kind of stomach upset where you are not sure you will make it to the bathroom in time.
The sad kind.
It lasted for a week.
We thought we kicked it. Until 2 weeks later Addison got it.
Right after we landed in Colorado for our summer vacation.
Addie spent the first week of vacation on the couch sipping Gatorade
and lamenting the fact that only Will got to play with the cousins.
There were tears. A lot of them were mine.
The day before we were supposed to fly back to California, Will got it.
The onset was swift and violent.
I broke down and wept in front of my parents. And they prayed strength and peace over me.
Their love buoyed me up. I wiped my eyes and went to don my latex cleaning gloves
and to get out the ibuprofen one more time.
Scott, Jack and Addie flew home.
And Will and I stayed for another 5 days. Until his fever died down and his stomach settled.
These two weeks of vacation were spent in a haze of Clorox wipes and Lysol cans and my
frantic pleas of "Don't touch anything!" And "Don't get too close to Grandma!" and
"Sweet Jesus, help us!"
I have read more books in this past two weeks that I have in the past two years.
So, there is an upside to being quarantined, I guess.
I have also prayed more in the last two weeks than I have in a long time.
And I have invited others to join me.
I texted my sisters the night before I flew,
"Please pray that I don't get it while we are flying and have a blow out on the plane."
Now most of you have not ever thought of praying to not have a blowout or if you have,
you have never thought to include others in that prayer.
But then maybe you have never come into contact with my dark enemy, salmonellosis.
Those of you who have caught a parasite over seas or
who have drank the water on mission to Mexico trip know what I am talking about.
You need a formidable prayer covering when you are up against a microbe like this.
A strong hedge of antibacterial prayer to hem you in from all sides.
We made it home without event. Praise the glorious name of Jesus!
And so far, I have been able to hold out against the raging sickness.
I believe this is only by the hand of God. And the fact that I have washed my hands
so many times that I no longer have an epidermis.
There is that.
So all that to say. Summer has gotten off to somewhat of a crazy start.
I have had to cancel the kid's writing camp I was going to do in July along
with several appointments. We are still on lock down with Will so as not to
spread this madness to anyone else.
But I am thankful.
I am home. My boys survived a very serious illness.
We are all together as a family again.
The hydrangeas in my backyard are blooming better than they ever have before.
With the daily wipe downs, my house is going to be cleaner than it has ever been. Ever.
And my prayer is booming. I have been talking to Jesus all day long for almost a month now.
He is keeping us in his hand. This I know to be true.
When I texted my mom to tell her that we were home safe, she answered,
"God is good!" And that is the truth.
I know Jesus is going to get us through. He always does.
My dad told me when we left, "Better days are ahead!"
And I am banking on it.
That and on the fact that Lysol  kills 99.9% of bacteria that it comes in contact with.
So that being said, we come!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

13 questions that we are all asking now that it is summer

1. Wasn't it just January?
2. How did my summer clothes shrink when I haven't washed them since last summer?
Drawer humidity? Outer space Shrink Ray? Black Magic?
3. Why are my kids eating 5700 calories a day without growing out of their clothes? Does the month of June automatically ramp up their metabolism? If so, why hasn't it ramped up mine?
4. Wasn't it just January?
5. Is there scientific proof that packing the car for vacation is known to trigger nervous breakdowns?
6. Does frozen food count as a serving of fruit if it has a fruit in the name?
Strawberry ice cream? Pineapple popsicles? Black Cherry slushies?
7. Are there actually swimsuits for sale that offer full coverage without making you look like you are a 75 year old granny wearing a spandex maxi dress?
8. Is there anything cuter than seeing your sun kissed kids passed out in the backseat of the car on the way home from an afternoon at the pool? Is there a way to make them stay this way after you pull into your driveway?
9. Why does everything taste better when it is cooked outside over an open flame?
10. Why am I gripped by an uncontrollable desire to run through sprinklers and chase ice cream trucks?
11. Why do people who should never wear tiny swimsuits always wear tiny swimsuits?
12. Do long car rides with children lower your life expectancy? Does the amount of children in the car directly correlate with the number of years shaved off of your life?
13. How long until school starts up again?

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Happy Resurrection Day!

Yesterday I was out on a walk praying about different concerns,
reminding God about what I have going on in my life and how much I need Him to intervene.
You know, just in case He forgot.
I was caught up in worry...
like maybe this time around He couldn't handle what I was asking Him to do.
And this thought popped into my head.
"I raised your Mom from the dead."
Just like that. Like raising someone from the dead is no big deal.
Which of course, to the One who breaths galaxies into existence, it isn't.
I forget that the One that loves us most of all, loves impossible odds.
He tends to do his best work in those situations.
Sometimes the Holy Spirit has to remind me of who He is...
because I tend to make him small and nervous in my mind.
Of course, at the thought of my mom, I burst into tears. Tears of relief and joy.
One year ago today, my mom woke up from an induced paralytic coma
after experiencing sudden cardiac death.
I remember the feeling that I had when my brother-in-law Van called
and told me that she was being airlifted to the hospital
and they didn't know what was going to happen.
It was like the air had just been sucked out of the room and we couldn't get it back.
The call sent us four kids scrambling. We couldn't stop crying but more than anything
we just needed to be with Mom and Dad.
Jenny and I flew to Colorado from California, Van and Erica flew from Oregon,
and Christ and Traci raced back home from their vacation in Hawaii.
The doctors told us, "She may come back, she may come back with brain damage,
she may not come back at all."
My dad stayed in her room. He couldn't eat. He couldn't sleep.
He couldn't leave her. His heart was with her. It was breaking.
We four kids were beside ourselves. Because this was Mom.
The one who loves us so good and strong.
The doctor's and nurses caring for Mom, were so kind, so careful with her,
speaking words of encouragement to her even though she couldn't answer back.
Sitting in her hospital room, with a million tubes linked to her body, her stillness, her silence,
left us only one choice, to ask the God of the Universe to do what only He could do.
Breathe life back into my Mom.
Around the world, thousands of friends and friends of friends, prayed with us,
surrounding us with grace and hemming us in with hope.
We sat around her bed and sang songs. Songs about the mightiness of God.
Songs about his power and grace.
Songs reminding us and Mom about the miraculous God we love.
When we left Mom's room that night we were hoping against hope.
We were asking God to do the impossible. He was the only one who could.
In those midnight hours laced with prayer, in that small hospital room,
in the midst of beeping machines and whistling breathing apparatus,
God began to sing a different song over my mom.
A song of life and hope and joy and healing. A wake up song. A get up song.
It is the best song we have ever heard.
A mighty shout had gone up into the heavens on her behalf.
And He answered back with his own shout, "YES!"
Around 2 am in the morning, May 24th of last year, my mom started to wake up.
And we had a party. A crying, laughing, hugging, overflowing with joy party.
A Resurrection Day party!
And on this one year anniversary, we are standing in that place of joy again.
Mom is fully recovered, working in her garden, laughing with her grandkids,
loving Dad and us with everything she's got.
She made 8 apple pies this past Thursday. She and Dad hand delivered them to the
fire department, police department and the medical teams
at the two different hospitals that cared for her.
She says it is the diligence of man and the hand of God that saved her.
And we will never be the same. We see life through a different lens now.
The other night we were having dinner with Scott's sister, Cheri and her family.
Jack and his cousin, Brian, were talking about the phrase, YOLO...
You Only Live Once. That is unless you are a cat. Then you get 9 lives.
Will piped up from across the table,
"You only live once. Unless you are Jesus, Lazurus or Grandma."
Truer words have never been spoken.
Today's worries and cares seem small against the backdrop of that miracle day last year.
The God who loves us most of all, who delights in the details of our lives,
is a God of incredible power, unfathomable strength and insurmountable hope.
And apparently, He is calling the shots. It just doesn't get better than that.
So on this bright May morning, I just have one thing to say.
Happy Resurrection Day!
Mom and Dad and the ER team from Estes Park

Thursday, May 22, 2014

tired supergirl summer book sale

So you should know off the bat that I am a lame-o marketer of my books.
My husband confirms this. Regularly.
Scott is always encouraging me to share my books on
my blog, FB and twitter.
To get the word out about God's grace, truth and freedom.
If you need a good summer read, be sure to pick them up at the TSG bookstore!
Could you help me spread the word about this fun deal on your blog or FB or twitter?
I would be forever grateful. And so would Scott!