Thursday, October 10, 2013

A Soldier's Prayer

This prayer was written by my son while he was in Basic Combat Training for the Army. He graduated last week and is home for a few days. I feel a tremendous amount of pride for what he accomplished in BCT, but am the most proud of how he made it relying on his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

A Soldier's Prayer
Dear Lord,

They say we are the toughest, the bravest, our country's pride and joy. Yet there are times when I feel I can't be the hero in the pictures, where I'd rather retreat than lead the way. I wonder if they are really thinking of me back home like they say they are. I worry that I'll mess up and my mistakes will make it harder for my battle buddies to get through this. I wonder how one PVT E1 can make a difference for you.

All my strength and will to drive on comes from you. Each day I page through your Words and find something that can get me through the day. Help me to be confident that you can get me through the day. Help me to be confident that you are ever by my side; running with me; doing the push ups; shooting my rifle; and trying to adjust to a lifestyle where everything and everyone I know are far away.

Everyone, that is, but You.

I want to be the best that I can be so I display the traits of a person whose greatest endeavor is to emulate Christ. My limits are tested here on a daily basis. But I keep in mind that my struggles pale in comparison to what you endured so that I and those I love might spend eternity with you.

Here at Sand Hill we say, "I am the Infantry; FOLLOW ME!" As Infantry, we set the standard for all other soldiers. So when others Follow me, give me the wisdom and words to lead them to you.

Take care of my mother and make sure she understands how much I love her and how I've come to comprehend how much she loves me. Bless the rest of my family and keep them close to you.

I can hear you Spirit in my ear: "Onward Christian Soldier!" And then it's just one foot in front of the other.

All this I ask in the name of my only true Commander in Chief, Jesus Christ.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Preparing to Say Good-bye

They grow up so fast...

How many times do we hear this as moms and blow it off? I have preschool tantrums, school-age drama, and teenage rebellion. Let me tell you, it has not felt like it has gone fast.

Yet, I am preparing to say good-bye to my first born son. My sweet boy with the mop of curly black hair.
The boy who made me a mother.

In just about six weeks, my son will pledge to the United States Army that he will serve them.

He will leave.

And all I can think of lately is, "How will I say good-bye?"
I have already seen glimpses of how God may use him while he is gone. Ruben has a love for Jesus that is so apparent and real. I want God to use him in big ways.

But...a piece of me will go with him.

This is the most difficult part of being a mother.

The letting go. 

Philippians 4:13 tells me, "I can do everything through Him who gives me strength."

Lord, I need your strength...

Thursday, April 25, 2013

30 Day Cleaning Challenge- Day 25

Oh my goodness! I started this challenge strong but have struggled to keep with it. I have noticed my house not staying as clean without doing the challenges so I am going to really try to finish the challenge. I plan to use this method to clean my house going forward. It does really seem to work. (as long as you do it!)

Today's challenge is to clean your kitchen or living room.

Both of my rooms were pretty clean so I decided to clean my oven. The smoke alarm has been going off lately when I have been cooking. Maybe it is time to take care of that!

I don't like to use chemicals when I clean my oven. I just dumped some baking soda in the bottom of the oven and then poured some vinegar onto the baking soda. It is better but still has some gunk on it. Is there a good way to clean an oven chemical-free that works?

Hopefully it will be clean enough that it won't make the smoke alarm go off any more!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

5 years old and 30 Day House Cleaning Challenge- Day 18

This past weekend, we celebrated my sweet Aubrey's 5th birthday. 
It has taken me most of the week to recover! We had family over Friday night and then 11 five year old girls here Saturday. It was tons of fun but I was exhausted afterwards!

So...I am back on track with the 30 Day House Cleaning Challenge.

Today's challenge is to clean your refrigerator.

I don't know why but I dread cleaning my fridge.

The shelves definitely needed a good washing. I also had a lot of stuff to recycle. Why do I have a Gatorade bottle filled with water that no one has drank for weeks in my fridge? Who knows! 
One thing I have noticed while working through the challenge this month is how much I overlook in my home. It is amazing how I can look at something over and over but not really see it. I am going to try to work harder not to let this happen.

How are you doing on the challenge?

Friday, April 12, 2013

30 Day House Cleaning Challenge- Day 11

Today's challenge is to clean your bathrooms.

I decided to do some decluttering.

I started with our medicine cabinet.
I found some medicine in there that I used when I was pregnant with my daughter. She will  be five tomorrow!

I also worked on the cabinet under the sink. Embarrassing!

This is so much better!

Last, I took the laundry down to the basement. Usually my boys take the laundry down but I thought that I would be nice to them! :)
 Not empty for long!!

It took me about 30 minutes to finish these projects. Why did I wait so long to do them?!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

30 Day House Cleaning Challenge- Day 10

Today's challenge is to deep clean your living room.

I have to admit that I do not deep clean very often. With four kids and a busy life, I am lucky to get the house surface cleaned!

I moved my couch and was shocked at what I found!

 This is a boring picture! This is after I vacuumed.

After I moved the couch, I noticed these two problem areas. It is amazing how when I started to deep clean, I kept finding more areas to clean!

Our entryway-

What do you do with your family's shoes? We just throw them by the door but this is pretty much in our living room. I would love some ideas on how to improve this area.

Clean for a moment!

This is the mess I was appalled at-

With the couch there, you don't really see it. It is tucked in the corner. When I moved the couch, it seemed so awful!

I added a bin to organize the books. I think it will help.

How often do you deep clean? I have decided I may need to do so more often!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

30 House Cleaning Challenge- Day 9

Yesterday was a looong day. It was gloomy here and I felt it all day long. Crabby kids and a crabby mom are not a good mix. I finally went to bed early and never got to the challenge.

Today is another day. It is still yucky here but I decided early today not to be a grump. Just making that choice made for a much better day!

Today's challenge is to surface clean a bedroom. I decided to work in my girl's bedroom. It needed some attention.

I noticed that the biggest challenge in their room is that they have a LOT of books. It makes me happy that my kids love books!

We put some of my older daughter's chapter books away that she has grown out of but Aubrey isn't ready for quite yet.

The books were overflowing onto their dresser.

Because we had put away some books, we had room to put these books onto her shelf. Soo much better!

This is our picture book basket. It looks like a garbage bin!

I love an organized book bin. :)

We still have some work to do but I am happy with the cleared off spaces!

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