Friday, December 09, 2005

**Okay, this is Nichola's sister, Priscilla, updating for her**

Nichola started Chemotherapy yesterday.

The treatment is making her pretty sick; David says she slept most of the day. When I talked to her she sounded pretty tired, too. They'll remain in Houston at least until Saturday which is when the first round of treatment will wrap up. If I understand correctly, she has at least six more treatments to go, one a month. Please keep her in your prayers. The chemo makes her immune system very vulnerable, which means she has to stay at home, away from any outside sources and the possibility of germs. Already tired from the illness, not having access to her friends and family is going to very rough on her.

She is keeping in very good spirits though, trusting God and knowing that he has her best interests in mind.

Thanks all.


Thursday, October 27, 2005

Tests and fun stuff like that...

I am at MD Anderson right now. I just got done with a PET scan, and am going over to do a CT scan soon. I found a computer to use and thought I would update you all.

We had a lot of fun in Galveston Tuesday. We went down on the beach and had a blast. There were shells everywhere and so we picked them up, or rather, as many as we could. :-) I found a hermit crab in one really pretty shell. I was so excited. I have never found one of those before. I showed it to David and the kids and then we turned him lose. It was so much fun.

Then we rode the ferry that runs between the island and part of the mainland, I think. We drove our car on and were looking out at the water, enjoying the seagulls following the ferry, when all of a sudden David spotted a dolphin. We couldn't believe it! They were everywhere. We even saw an oceanliner with one jumping off the front of the bow, just like you see in pictures. It was so awesome. We also saw jellyfish. I think the ones we saw were Man'O War, but I need to check to be sure.

We drove around a bit after we got across and found a Ft. with a playground and all for the kids. (I can't remeber the name of the Ft. :-/) Then we went back across on the ferry. We went to the seawall then and watched the sun go down.

Then Wednsday I came back in for more tests. I had a urine analysis, an EKG, and then bone marrow biopsy and aspiration on both sides of my hip. Not fun. But I made it and am just getting to whine when I get up and down now.

Today I had a PET scan done and am going to have the CT scan done at 1:00pm. I think here the drinks are flavored a bit better? That is the rumor. I hope so, and I hope I don't have to drink much. Prayer is requested for me right now!!! I will do my best but that is a hard thing to drink on an empty stomach. *sigh*

What I am learning
I am still learning a lot. One thing that I see right now is how divided the kingdom of God and the world is.

Oops, got to jump off! Will write more later!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Here We Are

Well, we made in down here. Sunday evening we made it to Houston and went by MD Anderson to see where I would be going. Wow. That is all I can say. There are sooo many buildings just to MD Anderson it is unbelievable. It is huge. I went in to find out where I would be the next day. A security guard helped me out. I asked him where I needed to be according to what they had told me on the phone. He decided to just take me up there, to the 8th floor. So, as we were walking along he asked me where I was from. I told him the area. Well, he knew where it was, he grew up about an hour or so away at Springtown. And his parents lived at Ranger for a while. It was hilarious really. Here I am in Houston and the guard knows the area I am from. :-)

I got registered and saw my doctor. (Read: Paperwork and waiting) I have a woman doctor, Dr. Fanelle. She ordered a bunch of tests and so I started doing all those. *Sigh* I have a bunch of holes in me now and know a lot more about some of the tests. I was there until 7:30 pm yesterday. Today I don't have anything scheduled but tomorrow I have a bone marrow asparation, on both sides of my hip. I am really not looking forward to that. Then Thursday I have a PET scan and a CT scan. Then that will be it until Mon when I will see my doctor again find out what all the tests showed and what they will recommend.

I have to admit, I had a bit of a hard time yesterday. At one point I was just hearing junk. I felt like a ship at sea with my anchor down but being tossed to and fro. I was hearing that this was the end, I had to go the way of chemo or there was no hope, blah, blah, blah. But the anchor held and while I was being tossed I could feel the pull, the stability of the line. God showed me so many things yesterday. And confirmed so many things.

I have to share one answer to prayer. As many of you know, we didn't qualify for Medicaid or anything. But when I got there for the registration part of things, they handed me a letter that was approval for 100% of the cost incurred to be covered. We will not get any bills. (I can hear some of you shouting!)

I did learn something about myself yesterday. I realized how even though I am passionate about certain issues, and my faith is one of those issues, I still have a tendency to bend and adjust just a bit so that I don't make people too uncomfortable. I realized this in the face of a somewhat hostile environment. It is okay to have faith as long as you don't have faith that there is any power outside the established norm. In other words, as long as you don't rock the boat and as long as you don't do anything different you can have whatever faith you want. But don't start talking about a faith that is bigger than science. Don't get too personal with that faith. I felt that pressure yesterday. I am done with it. I am not going to give into that pressure. I am going to be more radical than I have ever been in my life, and that is not just while I am at MD Anderson. (do I see some covering their heads? "You mean you weren't radical before?!")

Some of you have asked me to post how I would like you to pray for me. Well, keep praying for me to have strength and wisdom. And I would add to that boldness. Tomorrow I have the bone marrow asparation. That is going to be....well, not fun. And just pray for David and the kids too. They are doing well, but I think prayer has a lot to do with it and so keep praying!!!

Today we are going to Galveston as soon as we can leave. Since we don't have anything scheduled today we are going to have fun. So we will see the ocean and play around. I guess I need to get ready to go!

I will try to write later!

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Ho, Boy!

I was reading a friend's blog in which she mentioned her son getting into trouble in the kitchen. I commented on her blog and thought I would post part of my comment here.

"My neighbor had been out a bit late, I think, the night before. Well, the boys woke up first and decided to pull one of their favorite stunts, turning their bed over. (It was not a small bed, I don't know how they did it.) They then proceeded to the bathroom and played with the toilet and put tissue in the tub or sink, I can't remember which, and left the bathroom with the water running. Then the little men went into the kitchen and commenced opening bottles in the fridge and tasting and dumping them out. From what I heard they made quite a mess, very quietly I might add. They then found the last bit of beer in a can on the coffee table and poured that into her cigarettes. Finally, their mom woke up and came to get them. The bedroom was demolished. As she came down the hall her feet touched the water that now covered the floor of the bathroom. She came unglued. She finally made it to the kitchen and found the kitchen floor smeared with ketchup, mustard, etc. As you can imagine, she was not a happy woman. She stormed and fussed and finally went for her cigarettes to try to calm down. Beer spilled out as she tipped the pack up to get one. It was too much. She just broke down and bawled then. It was just too many things in one blow. I know it was awful, but I laugh and laugh everytime I think of that story!"

If anyone reading has a good story like this to share I would love to hear it! Just leave me a comment.

Houston Update

Well, MD Anderson called us and we have an appointment down in Houston Mon. morning. We will leave Sun. early to go down. We will be staying with my aunt and her husband for a few days and then will be in a motel.

We were going to leave the kids up here but we decided that 2 weeks was too long to leave them. So, we are taking them with us.

I am not looking forward to the testing and all. But I know that I will be okay. If they insist on pushing me around in a wheelchair I am going to really work on them for some wheelies. :-)

I am going to try to update a lot while I am there. I should have internet access.

I covet your prayers. 2 Cor 1:8-11 is a scripture that I feel that God has given me during this time.

"We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death.
But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, as you help us by your prayers.
Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.” 2 Cor. 1:8-11 NIV

Love you all!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Quick Update

Long time, no post!
Sorry everyone, I have been busy in so many other arenas lately that it will take a whole book to catch up on what has been going on here.

MD Anderson
Right now we are waiting to hear about the possibility of getting into MD Anderson. I have submitted the application for financial help and am now waiting for an appointment to go down there. But other than that not much is going on.

There has been a major change however in the course of treatment of this cancer. A few weeks ago I felt like the Lord put it in my heart to not do chemotherapy. So, I’m not doing it. I am looking at alternative treatments and am waiting to see what God has for me. Crazy as it may sound, I do have peace and am eager each day to see what God is going to show me and do.

Also, we purchased some milk goats last week, 2 Alpine goats. Raw milk is something that is very good for me and so we now have a supply. :-) David has always known how to milk. He grew up on fresh cow’s milk. He had never milked a goat, however. Well, he quickly adjusted to the difference and has now taught me how to milk. I love it. I am still very slow, but he is patient and so is the goat I milk.:-)

As for the milk, I have always hated goat milk. Once in a Sunday school class my teacher served goat milk, I guess to give us a taste of what it was like to drink what Abraham drank. It was awful. But when the teacher asked if anyone wanted some more all the other kids threw such a fit about how nasty it was that I decided to take some more and drink it just for the effect of it. :-) (Ornery? Me?) However, I decided that if I could drink iodine I could drink goat milk. But this milk is so good. It doesn't have the goat taste that goat milk usually has. I like it even better than the raw cow's milk that we were getting from David's dad. So, I am enjoying fresh milk, milkshakes, eggnog, etc.

Since I am not going to write a book right now I guess that is it. :-) I will try to update more often though!

Monday, October 03, 2005

Are Mormon's Christians?

I had an interesting discussion with my sister last night. She had some questions about Mormonism or rather, LDS Mormonism, which she had been told was different that other radical Mormonism. I decided to write a post on this.

LDS stands for Latter Day Saints. As far as I can tell, there is nothing different about regular Mormons and LDS Mormons.

I did a bit of research and found the following website.
This seemed to be a very good resouce in understanding Mormonism. The writer on this site is very clear and easy to understand, but does not have a nasty attitude about Mormons.

So, what do they believe? If you talk to a lot of them, they really don't know. Not because they haven't studied enough but because they have not been told yet. Here is a good page to read about what they believe that is different from Christianity. This shows plainly why there is nothing in Mormonism that is really even close to being the same as what Christians believe.

But, as my sister asked, don't they believe in the same God as us? They talk about God and Jesus and even Jesus being their salvation. Talking with her last night I couldn't remember everything that I had learned before about this. Here is some very plain information as to why they are not talking about the same Jesus and God and why they are not Christians.

"In short, Mormons worship a Jesus who they claim was a polygamist and the spirit-brother of Satan. They believe in a Jesus who was not always god and whose blood does not cover all sins. The Jesus of the Mormon Church is not the Jesus of the Bible."
Follow this link to see more info on this.

Friday, September 30, 2005

Revelation # 2 (Finally!)

Revelation # 2

It has taken a while for me to write about this but here at last is the other big thing God ministered to me when I was first told the doctors thought that I had lymphoma.

I had a hard time that first day thinking about what my family and friends were going to go through when they heard about this. I knew that it would be hard on them and I didn’t want to see that. I was starting to stress about what they were going to have to deal with.

God helped me out. He reminded me of how I believe that He got me through rough stuff in my life. And how that I know that He used the trials and all to strengthen me, grow me and enlarge my vision. That was easy for me to acknowledge. I know that He has done all that and that I am who I am today because of His love and grace getting me through each obstacle.

Then He asked me the question, how could I believe that He was big enough to work in my life and take care of me in the rough times but not trust Him to take care of the ones I love in the tough times? How could I look at the stuff in others lives and think that they would be better off if it wasn’t taking place? How can I think that God is not using things in their lives to strengthen and grow them? Would I stop the work of God in their lives?

These were very big questions. As I pondered what He was showing me in asking those questions, I realized how carnal and earthly my mindset had been. Basically it boiled down to that I wanted to be in control. I wanted to control the things that others had to deal with. I wanted to be in God’s position.

I repented and let it go. I do not want to see hard things come into the life of my children, family and friends. But I have to let God be God and let Him work in their lives the way that He sees fit. He is working in their lives, just as He is in mine. He has good plans for them and I can trust that He is taking care of them and let Him do His job. :-)

It has been amazing the difference that letting Him have it has made in my life. I am not worried about it any more. I know that He has a plan and a purpose and is going to work it out in a powerful way.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

No Wheelies

I'm home!

We had a good trip to Oregon/Washington. We had to come back sooner than planned, but had a good time anyway. I felt so good while up there. I had so much energy while I was up there it was amazing! God is really doing something in my body; I was going up and down stairs and even sprinted a few times with no problem. 3 weeks ago that was a total impossibility. It feels so good to be more myself.

I did have to stay in the hospital for 2 days when we got back. Not because I was sick or anything but because I had to have some tests run and a medi-port put in.

It was really funny. I walked into the hospital and checked in. Then the lady at the desk says, “Okay, hold on just a second and I’ll get you a chair and take you upstairs.” She meant a wheelchair! I said that I could walk, no problem. “I’m sure you could but I have to take you up”

So, incredulous, I sat down and off we went. It was downright hilarious. I couldn’t help but ask her if I should look really sad and sick as we passed people. I also wondered about wheelies. She wasn’t allowed to do that. *Sigh*

She took me to my room and there was a nurse getting my bed ready. The girl pushing me got me as close to the bed as possible. I asked if they were going to lift me onto the bed too. Fortunately, they didn’t have to do that. :-)

I got changed into the official hospital garb. A really stylish, high fashion outfit. :-) Pretty soon another wheelchair came for me, this time pushed by a young black guy. I was just getting situated and another chair showed up! (I was supposed to have two tests from two different departments done and they both sent for me at the same time.) They worked it out and off I went with the first guy. I thought it was worth asking him about wheelies. Same answer, although, I think if I had really worked on him he might have done a little one.

He took me to have my sonogram done on my kidney. My CT scan had showed that my right kidney was swollen because a lymph node was swollen and pushing on the tube that goes from my kidney to my bladder. The concern was that it might get shut off completely. So, my doctor ordered a sonogram to see what needed to be done. He was thinking maybe a stint should be put in or something like that.

So I had that done and then was wheeled off to have an echocardiogram. (Which for those who don’t know is simply a sonogram of the heart.) The girl asked me if I thought I could walk into the room. Could I walk? I jumped out of the chair so fast I think she kind of shocked. Jokingly I told her that I could race her down the hall and win. It was obviously not the normal response from a patient!

The guy that pushed me back to my room wouldn't do a wheelie either.But I think he would have been even easier to get to do one. He asked me if I minded going by the front part of the hospital, it would be a faster route to get back to my room. I didn’t mind, if he didn’t mind me slobbering and acting crazy. He didn’t, but I am not a good actress and couldn’t do it! :-)

My doctor came in the next day and told us the results of those two tests. The echocardiogram was normal, as expected. And as for the sonogram of my kidney, it was normal! The doctor said that it was probably an overreaction by the radiology doctors. I disagreed. I asked my doctor if he had seen my CT scan. He hadn’t, he was just going on the printed results of it. I saw my CT scan and I could see the right kidney was swollen. I told my doctor that I had seen it and with my untrained eye I could see the swelling. I told the doctor that I had gotten better, and he said it appeared so. I know so. I know God healed me. Lymph nodes were swollen, pushing on that tube. The only explanation is that the nodes went down.

I am really very excited. The lymph nodes in my neck that were big have gone down a lot. I can still feel them but can’t see them. And the ones in my groin have gone down a bit too. I know that God is doing something big. I know that He is healing me. Thank you all for your prayers. Keep praying and expect a miracle.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity, Jig...

We flew home last night and I have a doctor's appointment at 2 pm in Abilene today. Yeah, no fun but then again, no big deal. I'm not worried about it. I think David's sister is going to go with us also.

Be praying for us. We have many descions to make in a short amount of time. I don't have time to go into everything right now. Please just be praying for us. :-) I'll get to more details soon and Revelation #2.

Gotta get ready to go!

Friday, September 16, 2005

Hello From Oregon!

Hello everyone! Yes, I am on vacation, but couldn't resist posting, in fact, I ask you all to continue to keep me in your prayers.

We found out what the biopsy results were and therfore know more about what kind of cancer we are dealing with.

Anaplastic lymphoma is what I am fighting. It is a high grade, aggressive non-Hodgkins lymphoma. From what I understand it responds well to treatment. It is in stage 3, which is pretty advanced.

Be in prayer for us, we may need to cut our vacation short to get back and start treatments soon. We will find out Monday if we need to do that. I am not ready to go home, but it is in God's hands.

On another note, we have had so much fun so far. Being back in the Northwest has been great. I am loving getting to see the mountians and all the evergreens. I still don't want to live here, but am glad that I am getting to visit.

We are at David's cousin's right now. I am posting from their computer, on broadband. Yeah, I could get really jealous. :-) It is fun.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Revelation # 1

I want to write about what God has shown me during this time about healing. There are two major things He has shown me and helped me with since I was told that I might have lymphoma and I would like to share them here.

When I first started dealing with the swollen lymph nodes in my leg, I had the thought that God might show me something about healing in this. The longer I had the problem the more I thought that. In fact, around the time of my first CT scan I told David that I felt that God was going to fix my mindset and perspective on healing. I just had a strong sense of that. Sure enough, that was His plan.

I grew up under some of the word of faith teachings. While I believe that God does honor His word and there are great and precious promises in His word, I saw an abuse of the word and a mindset that was dangerous. In the teaching on healing, I had seen teaching that said that if you claim scriptures, have faith, get rid of sin and hang onto your healing that you will be healed. These teachings are found in scripture. But the problem I had was seeing this applied in a way that said that God HAD to perform just how we prayed if you did everything right. And what about the people that we prayed for that didn’t get healed?

What I had seen was a twisting of God’s word, a ditch, if you will. And also fears of praying God’s will in a situation, doing so was really anti-faith. When you try to figure out what God’s will is and then hold Him to it, there are bound to be times that you don’t quite see the whole plan. When God does something else it can lead to major frustration and even turning on God. I have seen this in my family and others.

Especially after I got married, God started showing me how faulty my view of Him was. This teaching fell into the category of the wrong view of God, who He is, what He does and how He operates. I didn’t give up on healing. I knew that was true.

I did have a hard time with knowing what to do and what to think about healing and praying for healing. I didn’t want to get back into that ditch. And many times praying scriptures for healing seemed like getting into that ditch.

It was right after the doctor told us that they were suspecting a lymphoma that God blew the top off of this festering issue and showed me His truth. It is so simple I don’t know why I didn’t see it before.

What He showed me was that I have been looking at the issue of healing through tunnel vision. Looking through just a small hole and therefore seeing only part of the picture it was hard to see what God’s truth on healing was. When I saw the full picture, I was amazed and in awe of His truth.

This is what He showed me. God does heal us. Here on earth we can pray, lay hands on the sick, believe and pray His word concerning healing. He will heal us. But we can’t limit the time frame in which we allow God to work. His promises are clear, He will and does heal us spiritually, physically, emotionally, etc. But is He limited to only healing here on earth? I think what we have done is put God’s healing into separate categories. We separate healing into the here on earth healing and then the healing we get when we die. What I saw was that it is not separate things. If He heals us here or in heaven it is still healing. There is not a huge difference. This is so simple but yet so mind boggling to me.

Suddenly, I was free. Free to boldly say that God is going to heal me. Free to pray and believe His promises. I know He will perform His word. I will be healed and healthy, whether here or there.

I am so excited about this that suddenly I am not worried about whether or not I have some lymphoma or not. It doesn’t matter. I know that I am healed and I am now in a place of understanding that I was not in before. It sounds crazy but I am just not worried about it. There are things I don’t know. I don’t know what God’s plan is. I don’t know if He is going to heal me this side of heaven or that side. But it really doesn’t matter! He will do just what He said He would do, and I can rest in His plan for me. It is going to be good. He is a good God and my good Father. I can trust Him. I am asking Him to heal me and believing that I am. Now I know that I am not in a ditch. I am resting in His plan and purpose for me.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

If You Are Reading...

I am curious. If you are reading my blog or you just happen to be reading it, would you leave me a comment and just tell me you are reading? I am just curious if people are reading. I get a few comments sometimes but it is hard to tell how many, if any are reading.

So, leave a comment!

Bloody Thumb

I was talking to David about doctors or something and he told me the following hilarious story.

One of his aunt's sisters was a hysterical type and was really hysterical when one of her kids would get hurt. One day her son injured his thumb some way and it was bleeding. She hit the panic button. She wrapped his thumb, threw him in the car and rushed to the emergency room. Finally, the doctor came in. The mother told him what had happened and how awful it was, etc. Slowly and carefully the doctor unwrapped the bandage, which was obviously bloody. He finally got down to the injured thumb. Carefully he exaimined it but could find nothing wrong with it. "This thumb is not hurt at all," he said. The mother was still in a state of hysterics and didn't believe him. The little boy said, "No, this one is," and held up the other thumb. On the was to the hospital he had unwrapped the injured thumb and rewrapped the other one. The doctor was not impressed with either of the two. The wound was really pretty minor anyway.

I bet that doctor never forgot that though. Carefully unwrapping a bloody bandage only to find a perfectly well limb underneath! :-)

Friday, September 09, 2005


I called the doctors office and asked if they had anything back on my biopsy yet. They did. They had been told today that they had sent it out to another lab and would get results back Wednsday or Thursday.

Just thought I would post and let you all know that we don't know anything yet! :-)

Thursday, September 08, 2005

New Experiences

I survived my first surgery yesterday. It was quite an experience. I never thought that I would have any kind of surgery. But let me back up.

I went in for my appointment Tuesday with the surgeon that was to do a biopsy on my lymph nodes. I also found out the results of my last CT scan. The scan showed that there are lymph nodes swollen all over in my abdomen. In fact one is swollen and pushing a bit on where my kidney drains and so my right kidney is a bit swollen. I got to see my scan, and that was interesting. I guess not many people have ever seen their own guts, but I have now. J The doctor was really nice and just explained and showed me everything and answered all my questions.

Basically the scan led them to believe even more that this is some type of lymphoma. They scheduled me for a biopsy the next day. That was weird to think about. The surgeon decided to take a biopsy of a node that was swollen on my neck. He thought it would be easier to get to and easier on me.

So, Wednesday at 7:00am we went in and I started on another journey of totally new experiences. First, I was given a hospital gown and a sack to put all my stuff into. Everything but panties and socks needed to come off and go in the bag, my nurse instructed me. And unless I was a magician, I would need help getting my gown tied. I guess I achieved magician status ‘cause I tied it all by myself with no problem. J

I was then led to a hospital bed and healthy me got to get up and sit in it, lean back and the nurse even covered my legs with a light blanket. It was weird, I didn’t feel a bit sick but here I am in a hospital bed, getting my temperature taken and getting ready to have an IV put in. The third one in my whole life. It was a strange thing to be happening, but here I was. I kept thinking that this was the time to start freaking out. But God was with me and was keeping me in perfect peace.

I had a really nice nurse; in fact, all the nurses were really nice. I sat in the bed for an hour or so. During that time, the anesthesiologist came and introduced himself to me and asked questions. Then some of the staff that was going to be helping to knock me out came and talked to me. J They were especially impressed with my chart and told me that my chart had, “Extremely healthy” written in it. They said that I was the healthiest person they would see all day. That made me feel good! Then they came and said it was time. So my next new experience was getting to be pushed in a hospital bed! Weeee!

Weird and Spooky! :-)
Then, we went through these metal doors into the operating room. Oh my goodness, this is really it, I was thinking. They wheeled me over to a little bed, about 2 ½ ft wide. I got over onto it and laid down. The girls in there started putting a strap over my legs, hooking me up to a blood pressure machine, gave me an oxygen mask, the whole bit. I was thinking how scary this should or would have been but was just in awe at how peaceful I was. God is awesome. Then the anesthesiologist came in and told me he was going to give me the anesthesia. It was so funny! He was from India and so spoke with a foreign accent. “Okay,” he said, “take some deep breaths. Think about some place you would rather be than here. Imagine yourself there…. Breathe deeply.” I knew that I was about to be going out, but I thought this was hilarious! It was just spooky enough to be funny! I did think about being somewhere else. Oregon! J I started thinking about the mountains and the pine trees in the mountains. Then I felt a fuzzy, foggy feeling and I knew that I was about to go under. My last thought was, “Well, God, here I go.” And off I went.

When I woke up, I was thinking about trees and God. I was groggy and all but I just started talking about how happy I was that God had helped me and wishing that David could be with me. I was just so at peace. I was actually a bit excited feeling, thinking about how God had been so close with me. Pretty soon they moved me to a chair/bed thing and pushed me out to a 2nd recovery room and David came in. I was pretty groggy still and nauseas. They gave me something in my IV for the nausea. I slept some and then finally started getting normal feeling.

I asked David what the incision looked like. He told me it wasn’t too bad, just looked like a bad scratch, like if I had had a run in with a barb wire fence. That was really comforting. J Actually, it looks really good. They made an incision and took one lymph node out and then stitched it up under the skin and glued the top shut. So really it looks pretty good and I don’t think it will leave much of a scar.

The doctor said that he should have the results of the biopsy tomorrow. So, I will update on that when I get the news.

I am just so happy about how it went and how God was with me. I felt His presence with me so strong and felt His peace. I always knew that God was strong and big in our lives, but it is still good to see it. I can boldly say, He will go with you and be with you through anything.

We are still planning to go to Oregon for 2 weeks. The doctor didn't think it would be a problem. Yay! :-)

Monday, September 05, 2005

Prayer Please

I have posted some here about what I have been dealing with lately physically but thought I would write the whole thing out so that anyone who is interested can see the whole thing in one post. There have been some new developments and anyone who reads this, I covet your prayers.

This is actually a copy of part of an email that I sent my aunt a few days ago.

"A few day after I had Sarah I started running a low fever and had a lump on my leg/groin area. I also had some back pain. My midwife came back and looked at my groin and thought it really looked like swollen lymph nodes. She sent me in to have it looked at. The NP I went to looked at my groin and said that it was a strained ligament in my leg, probably from carrying the baby. Nothing to worry about. The back pain was from having the baby and the fever was probably a urinary tract infection. She gave me some antibiotics and that was that. Well, I did get to feeling better some, but the lump was still there. And the fever left for a while maybe. Then I started getting tired again and fever came back, just a really low fever. Like, 98.9-100.2. Once it was 101. Very low. So I called the NP back and told her the deal. She thought I had a uterine infection then and over the phone told me she would just call in some antibiotics and see if that cleared it up. She did, I took them and while I was on the antibiotic, the lump on my groin/leg, turned red. Now, when I had had that come up to start with, my midwife kept asking me, "Is it red," "Is it red at all," "Can you see any redness", and then looked herself. There was no red. When it did turn red, however, I knew it was a danger sign, partly because of my midwife being so concerned about that. (Btw, my midwife is an RN too.) I called the NP. She was not able to look at me, she was going to be out of pocket, but said that I was probably going to need a DNC cause I had a uterine infection and probably needed to go to someone else. Which we did as soon as we could get in. I went to a different NP who worked with a doctor. She gave me a pelvic exam, (which the other lady never did), took cultures and all to send off, but said that she didn't think I had any problem. When she saw the lump on my groin her eyes got a bit wide. She said she was sure that it was swollen lymph nodes and wanted to get busy treating that immediately. She got the doctor to look at it just to be sure. He was sure, more than sure. I asked him what could have caused them to swell up. He told me what didn't cause it, and that was the birth of or carrying the baby. He said none of the female stuff is dealt with through those nodes.

So, Glenda, the other NP missed it. Bad. Cause this really is something to be taking care of. She told me many times, cause I kept asking, that it was not a big deal. Looking back, she just didn't take enough time with me. She didn't even give me a pelvic exam, and I had just had a baby when I saw her. I saw the contrast loud and clear when I went to see Marilyn, the one in Abilene. Her nurse talked to me for several minutes about my medical history, symptoms, etc and then Marilyn talked to me herself for about 15 min before ever even looking at me. That let me know right off that this was a whole different deal. And I was glad. And Glenda just assumed that she could take care of what was going on. I thought that she would refer me to a doctor if the need was there. Marilyn on the other hand has been checking very carefully it seems with the doctor she works with. She has asked him about everything she does.

I wasn't glad that they put me on some pretty nasty antibiotics that I couldn't nurse Sarah while taking. But it needed to be taken care of. Marilyn was very serious about it. I went back in a week and the redness was gone, but the swelling wasn't down much. She didn't like it and gave me more antibiotics and also said that she would like me to get a CT scan. She told me to let her know if I had any more fever or anything like that. The day after I saw her I had fever. I called her and told her and she wanted me to get in quickly and get the CT scan done. That was Thursday. I called Friday to try to schedule one and got in that day because someone cancelled. So we scrambled to Abilene and got that done. (Which was no fun, by the way. I don't recommend the drink they give you before you have it done. Mine tasted like old, ten year old Country Time lemonade that was really, really bad. Nasty doesn't even come close.)

They called us Wed. and had us come in and tell us the results of the scan. They said that they were suspecting lymphoma of some kind. Possibly Mono, but really not thinking that was a high chance. So, they wanted me to get a full CT scan yesterday and more specific blood tests. So we did that yesterday and I see a surgeon Tuesday. We don't know the results of the new scan yet but will early Tuesday. They did tell us that we will probably need to do a biopsy of the swollen nodes. There is now also one on my neck swollen a bit.

And that is where we are now. Either way, I know I am okay. God is taking care of me and I am going to be fine no matter what.

Oh, and btw I remember that lump being there while I was pregnant. It was sore but I thought that it was just from the baby. I did think it was swollen once but then thought it was my imagination. And it was not much swollen, just a bit, so minute that it was hard to tell. I never mentioned it to my midwife since I didn't think it was anything. :-( So this has probably been there for about 6 months."

I go in tormorrow for an appointment with a surgeon about a biopsy and to find out the results of the other scan. I will update you all then.

I have been learning so much during this time and have so much to share, it is really exciting. God has done a lot in my life during this time and I feel like I have grown 10 feet spiritually. It is so awesome.

Friday, September 02, 2005

If you want to help in a really practical way

This is an awesome example of people willing to help in really practical ways. People are opening their homes to victims of the hurricane or offering to help support people in housing. If you feel called to help, here is a really hands-on way to do it and have a long term impact on someone's life.

I plan to post some more on this subject later.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

World's oldest person dies aged 115 - Europe -

World's oldest person dies aged 115 This caught my eye. Herring. I've heard a lot of different things that will keep you going strong. What are the ones you all have heard?

Monday, August 29, 2005

Thoughts On Books

Dr. Laura
I was listening to a CD I got from Focus on the Family in which Dr. Dobson did an interview with Dr. Laura Schlessingler. She was talking about her book, "The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands." I would like to read this book. She says many of the same things that Debi Pearl says in her book, "Created to be His Help Meet." It was very encouraging and interesting to listen to.

Something that I have been thinking about on this issue of husbands and wives is how universial the principles are. When a wife treats her husband right, whether either one of them are Christian or not, the marriage is strengthened and has a much higher chance of success. In the case of Dr. Laura, her book has been mostly read by non-christians. The ones that have embraced her advice have seen dramatic changes in their lives. You can get the CD or a cassette of the interview. Like I told my husband, getting more than one person's perspective on the same subject is very good. Dr. Laura comes from the perspective of one that has had the worldly mindsets and had some very interesting arguments on the feminist agenda that were more than just quoting the bible and sounding like a weak-minded woman that has been brainwashed. (Her audience is mostly non-christian and the things she says speaks to them in their world.) She has some very good things to say about men and women and what the differences are. She is not a Christian but I think she has some very good things to say on the issue that are very helpful.

CT Scan
The clinic didn't have my test results from the hospital yet yesterday. Maybe today?

Morning Musings

Hurricane Katrina
Wow. I have been reading news stories about Katrina this morning. My husband woke me up to show me the radar picture of Katrina. Scary doesn't quite describe the feeling you get when you look at that storm. From what I understand, some of the places around New Orleans could be simply wiped off the map from a storm like this. Wouldn't that be weird? To leave your home and come back and the place where it was is totally gone? Even the land it had been standing on? I can't imagine it.

Erin and Rene, are you are seeing some of the evacuees down there? One news story said that there was a river of headlights streaming away from the storm and into Texas.

CT Scan
Hopefully today I will find out the results of my CT scan. And I hope I don't have to go in, it is an hour drive and gas is so high. Sigh. We will do what we have to do.

I am trying to get a picture of my posted to my profile. I'm having to figure it out and it is going to take me a bit.

In the meantime, here is one of me making bread just before I got pregnant with my youngest.

My husband says it looks like a Crisco advertizment! LOL!

Sunday, August 28, 2005

New Orleans Braces for Powerful Hurricane - Los Angeles Times

Click here if you want to know about the storm tonight. I guess this will all be different in the morning. Lord, be with LA.

CT Scan And Other Fun Stuff

Well, Friday I went in and had a CT scan. Yay. If any of you have ever had one you know what I mean. The scan itself wasn't too bad, but getting ready for it was not something I want to repeat. I had to drink an iodine drink. It looked like powdered lemonade drink and tasted like 10 year old powdered lemonade that had gone really bad. I had 4 big strofoam cups of it to drink. I did okay on the first one, but halfway through the second one I started feeling sick. I had to drink them pretty much all at once. I got 3 down and they told me I could take the other one with me and come back in an hour. I tried, I really did. But I couldn't get the last bit down. When I got back I asked the nurse if I had to finish it. She told me to go ahead and dump it out. For my test it would be okay, but usually I would have to get it down. YUCK!!! And then I had to have an IV while I had the CT scan.

I don't know the results yet but probably will tomorrow.

I got my schedule worked out yesterday, or most of it that is. David gave me some good advice to use this time to get my schedule all written down. So I got busy working on that. I have some more fine tuning to do and then will post it here.

It is not very long until time for us to leave on our trip. I am so glad that I have been learning not to get so worked up about the little stuff 'cause there is a lot that I am not going to get done it looks like before I go. I wanted to be able to get the house back in order and leave with a spotless house. This would be reasonable and I may still get it done, but if I can't I can't and I am not going to worry about it.

I am really looking forward to going. I have a hard time believing that we are really going to go. It just seems so far out there that we could really get on a plane and go to Oregon/Washington! It is going to be so exciting.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Some Stuff About My Buttons

I have some new buttons on the side of my blog, and I thought I would let everyone know about them.


This is an excellent company in my opinion. We have our business website hosted by Ix-webhosting and we have been very satisfied. We never have had it be down during the time we have been with them. The features are great and the prices unbeatable.


This seems like a good thing so far. You basically recieve points for stuff you buy online through them from major companies, like Avon, Old Navy, etc. You can then redeem your points for fun, free stuff. There is a lot that I have not checked out yet that looks like it would be good. And best of all, I have not so far recieved any junk email from signing up with them. :-)

Sub with Bloglines

This is a cool site. I found this through a comment that was left on Rene's blog. Basically you set up an account, for free, and then add blogs that you want to look at and keep up with, and it does all on one page. I am really enjoying it. I still go to the blogs that I like to read, but sometimes I don't have time to go look at them all, waiting for pages to load. With Bloglines I can just look at them all and see if there is anything new and if it is something I want to read at the moment. Very handy. I think it could have a lot of value for those of us with not much time that can get lost in computer-land reading blogs.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005


I had an appointment with the doctor yesterday. Yay. I'm back on yucky antibiotics since the lymph nodes were not down as much as she thought they should be. Really, they are not down much, just that nasty infection is gone. So, it's back to being drained by Levaquin. I do not like this stuff. I don't like it one bit.

While we were in Abilene yesterday we had fun, though. We stopped and ate with some friends after my appointment and that was fun. We had a really good time.

Also, we have been thinking about our up coming trip. We did go ahead and get the double stroller we wanted. It was free shipping and so I shipped it to my grandma's and will be ready and waiting when we get there. We were thinking about getting a single then to push Keilah in, but weren't sure. The cheapest one at Wal-Mart was $20, and $20 is $20 when you are trying to pinch pennies. So, we were driving down the street and I saw one in front of a second-hand store. I looked it over and although it had been in the weather and wasn't the prettiest stroller I had ever seen, it did look good. It was a Graco, which is the brand that the other one is. It looked even better when I asked the guy the price. A stroller for $12 instead of $20, yeah, that sounds good to me! We tried it out at the mall. It worked great. And while we were there, we found shoes for the kids, and so the $6 we saved went for shoes. A very good trade in my opinion.

The funny thing was, you know how when you go shopping and get some something that you have been really wanting or needing and you come home with this happy "I got some new....fill in the blank?" That was what I came home like yesterday, but I didn't get anything! I tried on some shoes that I really needed and we got the kids some shoes, but I didn't get anything. So last night and today I have to keep reminding myself that I didn't get new shoes, although I feel like I did! And I am thrilled to pieces with my second-hand stroller. Go figure!

We had a funny episode last night in Wal-Mart. We were in Wal-Mart shopping and David was telling me about something that somone at church had said. We got pretty engrossed in our conversation and all of a sudden I realized what we were doing. I could help but laugh at us. We were standing by the formula, clogging the whole aisle, talking like we hadn't seen each other for a week or more. And then we walked around the rest of the time in Wal-Mart discussing stuff. My husband is home more than any guy I know and we talk about stuff all the time. Why we needed to block people from getting formula for us to get to talk, I don't know!

Anyway, just some random thoughts and ramblings for you!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Not doing anything real?

I was reading something on a friend's blog the other day and something she was saying reminded me of something I went through about a 2 years ago.

You moms know how this is. You work all day, 24/7 really, and pour your self into your home, husband and children. You love what you do, but there is something that says that you are not really doing anything. So and so is going to college, somebody else is building a career in a cool field, another someone is working and helping out with the income, really doing something. Somehow you are not really doing something big or real but maybe someday....

I had dealt with some of this myself and it was hard sometimes to see that I was really doing something. Then I got this phone call. It was one of those telemarketers that want to ask you all kinds of info so that they can give you some great deal. I don't remember now what it was she was wanting, but she started asking questions about our business. Was my husband the owner, how many employees did we have, etc. Then she said, "And ma'am, was is your position in the business." I was a bit taken off guard. "Uh, my position...?" Then the humor hit me. "Well, I'm the diaper changer, secretary, I answer the phone, do the laundry, cook meals, clean the house, pay the bills, work in the greenhouse, I'm in marketing...." By now the lady on the phone was laughing. "Okay, ma'am, I understand. Just tell me one to write down...." After I hung up, I got to thinking about it.

What if I were to look at everything I do all day, and night, and look at it as a profession? I started thinking of what I do from a corporate standpoint.

I'm on call 24/7 with no days off. I must be able to not only take care of all that needs to be done, but also decide when to do it. It a split second I can be thrust into a situation that demands fast reaction and seeing what needs to be done for a small child to avoid injury or to take care of an injury. I must make sure that there is food supplies ready to be fixed, and am in charge of getting them. To properly manage this job, I must be able to see needs and find ways to meet them, in the house, the family and any other area that could spring up at anytime. I also must help run the business that makes the income to be able to take care of the home and people in it. I have to attend to throw up at any hour, day or night, and any other sickness or problem that might arise. Also, the daily maintenence of the house in are such as laundry, dishes and general cleanup falls to me and my department. The list is too long and if I got it all down, there would be more to add at some point as it is an industry that is always changing and flexibility is key.

Now, how much would you have to pay someone to do a job like this, if you could find someone to hire? It would be upwards of $150-$200 an hour, with raises and benefits of course. The turnover rate would be huge.

So, I finally got down to this: I am doing something. I am in a profession that few would be brave enough to be in. If I were to be paid to do what I do it would be a huge amount and I would be stinking rich in no time. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in 3 months would be 324,000 at $150 an hour. In a year it would be 1,314,000. And there would be few expenses out of that since you would be living on site and eating meals at work. If that is not a good income, I don't know what is! I realized that I am really doing something worth while, even if I'm not getting paid cash to do it. Really, I don't think I could do the job I just described. But for my family I can, and what I do no one else can do for my family.

So, when you think about not getting to something real, think and ask yourself if most of the women you know could do what you are doing? You are doing something real and are not insignificant at all.

Well, I'm off to earn the big bucks!

Oh Boy...

This is a post I wrote on my livejournal and I thought maybe someone would like to see it. It is hilarious, don't read unless you are really ready for a good laugh. :-)

Monday, August 15, 2005

I'm not going to write a book...

So much has happened since my last post. I will try to update!


I finally found out what has been going on with me. I will try to keep this short. Basiclly, I do not have a utrine infection or a uninary tract infection like I was being told and treated for. I have swollen lymph nodes, which was diagnosed as a strained ligament, in my grion. The swelling was from something somewhere, I don't know where, and then the nodes got infected. That was what was causing my low fever all the time and tiredness. But since the lymph nodes went untreated they got really infected and it started turning red around them. We went to a different doctor and they knew right away what was wrong. They put me on some high powered antibiotics, a different kind than I had been on and told me to come back in a week. It is working, today the nodes are not as big and the redness is almost gone. I am having to feed my baby formula and pump so that I will be able to resume feeding when I am well. Not fun by any means but I am really glad that I have something to feed her while I can't breastfeed.

So, that is it in a nutshell. I'm really glad that we found out what was going on. I was headed for some bad stuff, folks. And the worst part is that I was being told that this big lump where these lymph nodes are swollen up was nothing to be concerned about. If it had gone on much longer...well, I'm glad it didn't! I feel pretty drained right now but I think it is the antibiotic making me feel that way.


We are going to Oregon!!! We bought our tickets and will be leaving the 13th of Sept and coming back the 27th. We got an awesome deal on them. If you can't tell, I am excited! I have not been to Oregon/Washington for almost 11 years. *bouncing and counting the days*

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Come With Me And Play

This post is a must read for any moms that read my blog. It is a good reminder for me to play more. *drops mouse and heads off to read books and play blocks*

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Well, we are officially done with the peach crop. David cleaned the trees yesterday and took a load to Abilene today to sell. This wraps it up for us. We did good. It was our best year yet. I have really enjoyed the fresh peaches and will be sad to see them go. But they will be back next year.

You know, I have been thinking about seasons lately. I don't really like change. I like things to stay the same. But they don't. And some things I would like to change faster seem to take their own sweet time. :-) But I have been thinking some about not fighting the times/seasons I am in. It really does no good anyway. If I want summer to stay longer, will fussing and fretting make it stay? Not even for a little bit longer. Why spend my time chaffing that I am not in a place that I am not? I need to live where I am and be thankful in the place I have been placed. It will change, but when it does, will I be happy if I was miserable the whole time waiting for it to change? Nope. I will find something new to want to be different. Contentment where I am at is really priceless. Not to mention that it is easier on my family if I am content even in tough times.

I am not saying that it is wrong to have goals or dreams that you try to attain. But I have found that when I focus on the things I don't have yet, it is sooo easy to fall into a trap of discouragement and dissatisfaction. But when I am looking at Jesus and happy with where I am even though I am looking forward to the next season then I find contentment. Times are always changing. Only when I am content in Christ will I enjoy the ride!

And quite a ride it is right now! I am still not feeling quite well. I am tired a lot and don't feel good moving around. I am taking an antibiotic and I think it is making me feel more tired. Needless to say, my house is suffering and it is a bit hard to take care of everything. So here I am wanting out of this time and trying to learn to stay content in the middle of it. It is an aggravation not be able to do the things that I want to do. But I have to remember to not get aggravated. It does no good, actually it makes it worse.

On another subject, we are planning a trip! We were planning to go to Oregon at Christmas. My grandma and a few other relatives live up there. We got thinking though. It would be more fun to go sooner since the weather would be nicer than in December. So it looks like we will be going to Oregon in September! I am sooo excited. Oregon is where I grew up. I lived in Portland until I was 15. My family then moved to Oklahoma. I haven't been back to Oregon or Washington since then. I have been really looking forward to the trip and am really happy that we are planning to go soon.

If anyone reading this has any tips on flying with kids I would really appreciate it. I have never done this before. The last time I was on a plane was when I was 7. :-) I loved it, but it really didn't equip me to know what to do with a 3 month old, 19 month old and 3 year old! Any tips on flying period would be great!

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Happenings Today

I haven't had time to write for a few days. As I told below in another post, I have been reading, and also I have been busy taking care of my people.

I made bread Sunday, bread that took about 1 hour from start to finish.

Right now my house is a wreck and I am determined to get it back in order. I haven't felt good this weekend and things kinda fell apart. I feel a bit better and am wanting to get this place straightened up.

Jakin is chasing a super ball all over the house. He loves those things and is perfectly happy to play with one for a long time. Until it hides itself anyway. :-)

Time to feed the baby and get on with things. :-)

Oh Boy!

I finished a book yesterday that I have been reading, "Created to be His Help Meet," by Debi Pearl. I really enjoyed, even though I was challenged to a higher plane than I had been on in some areas. I might try and do a review here later. For now I will just say that it is not a book the modern feminist would enjoy unless she is so frustrated with her lifestyle that brings her no joy and is grasping for hope.

My plug for the book is, if you have ever wished you could sit down and talk to an aged woman that had a succesful marriage and perhaps invite her to come sit and talk to you in your kitchen so you could ask her all sorts of simple and tough questions, read this book. If you long for godly advise from someone that has been there and walked in tough places and is not going to tell you just what you want to hear, read this book. If you grew up with a mother that was dissatisfied with your dad and everyone knew it, you must read this book. If you are married now and you find yourself being irritated about things your husband does, even if they are little, this book is for you! Debi Pearl wrote this book from depths of her heart, her experiences as a wife and mother, and her experiences as a woman that many women have turned to for counsel in their marriages.

Fair warning: she does teach that wives are to submit to their husbands. (gasp!) But by the time I got done with the book I did not pity the women who submit to their husbands, I pitied the women who will not. They are the ones that are truly weak and losing out on who they are and can be as women.

Also be warned: this book is roll on the floor funny sometimes. Debi writes in such a sweet way, though very direct and sometimes blunt. If she is wanting to write something funny, look out. She had me in stitches a few times!

I think every bride should read this book and am so glad I ordered it. You can order it from Crystal or right from the Pearl's.

Some interesting thoughts

I found this on Erin's blog and decided to link to it here. It got me thinking again about things that my husband and I have talked about before. Read it and clutch your purse/wallet a bit tighter and shut your eyes!

Friday, July 29, 2005

This is something I posted on my livejournal a while back, almost a year ago. I was going back through some of my entries and found this and thought I would post it here. It is something that I am going to be looking at again that is for sure.

This is an exerpt from the book, "Mrs. Dunwoody's Instructions for Excellent Homekeeping."

Mrs. Dunwoody’s Notes for Planning a Superior Day

1.Make a plan for your day. Otherwise you'll find yourself making the fatal mistake of dealing primarily with problems rather than opportunities.

2. Concentrate. I have observed that concentration is a key aspect of effective use of time. The amount of time spent on a chore seems not to matter as much as the amount of uninterrupted time. Few problems can resist an all-out attack. If you dedicate fifteen solid, uninterrupted minutes to an immense task, it will not seem so overwhelming the next time you return to it.

3. Learn to rest and catch your breath. To work for long periods of time without taking a break is not the most effective use of your time.

4. Don't procrastinate. It is the thief of time. Start off your day by doing the most unpleasant chore first. You will get such a feeling of exhilaration knowing that although the day is only half an hour along, you have already conquered the most troublesome task of the day.

5. Sift and sort. Don't assume the most important matters will "float to the top." You must sort through the clutter of the day and categorize. Ask yourself, "What needs immediate action, and what can I tend to by the fire's light this evening in my favorite chair?"

6. Strive for excellence, not perfection. Perfection does not existthere is a great difference in striving for excellence and striving for perfection. The first is attainable, gratifying, and healthy. The second is impossible, frustrating, and neurotic (not to mention obnoxious). It is also a terrible waste of time.

7. Never lose sight of the “big picture.” Some things need only five minutes or so, tending to a day, while others may need five hours. But if you can try to maintain a perspective, and remember that people (especially children) are always more important than things, you will do well in life.

"Guard well your spare moments. They are like uncut diamonds. Discard them and their value will never be known. Improve them and they will become the brightest gems in a useful life."-Emerson

Simple things really but very helpful I think!

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Kick It!

I am dancing a jig today! I have a new stove!!! For those who do not know, I have been using a stove that was, well, I thought it was possessed. It didn’t work well at all. The oven was either way too hot or way too cold. Just when I thought that I had it figured out it would pull a stunt and burn the food or cook it way too slow. I did ok with it though. I made bread, etc in it anyway. And I never once let myself kick it. It wouldn’t have helped so I held my temper and prayed for patience. But it was a trial. I learned a lot about controlling my temper. And not collapsing over stuff going wrong.

Well, yesterday my husband’s parents were going to town and saw a stove for sale at someone’s house. They stopped and bought it for $75. Then later my husband saw it and stopped to buy it and the man told him it was sold. When he told him who had bought it David realized that he was going to get it anyway!

When I got home, (I had been selling peaches), there was my old stove just outside the back door. I walked over to it, remembering all the meals and the headache that it had been. “Well,” I said, “You did you job. And I am thankful that I had you. But now you’re done. I never kicked you but,” and I gave it a good hard kick. And I kicked it again. David grinned and offered to get the shotgun for me. :-)

But you know, that was as far as I could go. Even though that thing had been nothing but trouble, it had been my stove. And suddenly I couldn’t be mad at it. I had fixed meals on it for several years for my family and others. I had learned to make delicious bread in it, in spite of it's fits. I had made cobblers, pies, casseroles, etc. How could I totally despise what suddenly looked like my old friend that had done it’s best? To my surprise I started looking at that cantankerous old thing with a bit of fondness.

I am very happy with my new stove. Though I haven’t been able to try it out yet, I know I am going to like it. (It is a gas stove and we need a longer connector pipe thingy.) I am not sorry to have a new one. But I am not going to be mad at my old one anymore.

Other happenings….

I didn’t get to make fried pies yesterday like I thought I was. I ended up having to go my in-laws and watch the peach selling operation while they went to town.

I did get an antibiotic yesterday. I started taking it last night. I don’t like taking medicine but I need to get this infection cleaned out.

Well, I will post this and get on with some other stuff. That won’t be much since I don’t feel well, but….

Money Saving Tips

Here is a link to money saving tips on your grocery bill. There are a lot of good ideas here. Thanks, Crystal for posting these!

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Fried Peach Pies

I am making fried pies this morning. David loves them and I enjoy making them. We had company last night and it was late when they left. So this morning I will also be cleaning my kitchen. :-) I want to start putting up some peaches now, too. If I wait much longer we will have sold peaches to lots of people without getting any put up ourselves! What a disaster that would be!

Yesterday I got the house cleaned back up. Yes, company was coming! And also yesterday was the first day for almost a week that I had any real "get up and go." I didn't make it to the NP yet but I think I am better now. I haven't had fever for a few days now and my energy is coming back.

Does anyone have a good meal planning system for a low income grocery plan? I need to learn to plan menus better. I really just don't know how to do it. Any tips or ideas would be great.

Gotta go fix breakfast for some little kids that just woke up. And fry some pies. MMMM!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005


I am going to attempt to write the post I lost earlier.

You know, life with 3 little kids can be demanding and stressful at time. :-) Sometimes more than others. Like when I am sitting down and my feet are being stepped on while someone asks for something or fusses. Like when I am nursing the baby, my 18-month-old son is fussing for milk and my 3-year-old daughter needs some tissue to wipe her bottom. Or when everyone is hungry, the baby needs to nurse and supper needs to get finished and the house sounds worse than a zoo. Times like that are demanding and hard.

I am learning, however, that the way I handle it makes a big difference in the way it affects me. For instance, when things like getting jammed up trying to get through a door irritate me, and the person causing the jam is about 2’ tall, it just builds the stress level. I then can’t be the person I need to be to meet my kid’s needs. I lose the ability to be a stable, steady, “nothing you do or anything else is going to shake me” person in their lives. Little kids need that.

So, God has been showing me that many things that I think are big, serious issues are not, and that little stuff or big stuff is not worth losing even a little peace over. (Like getting my feet stepped on.) This is a hard thing to learn. But I am learning to just not let myself get irritated about stuff. I don’t mean stuffing it, but I am learning to train myself to not allow myself to go around getting irritated at big or little things. I have not arrived on this, that is for sure, but I am working to renew my mind in this area. I am willing to pay the price since I have seen what difference it can make in my day and attitude with my kids. Romans 12:1-2 is something I am thinking about in this area.

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God- this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able the test and approve what God’s will is- His good, pleasing and perfect will.”

It is hard but I am learning. I am willing to be a living sacrifice in this area and allow Him to work in my life. He will receive and is receiving glory from the transformation in my life.

Just for fun

Thought this looked fun. The idea is to go through the list and make stuff you have done bold.

Swam with wild dolphins.
Climbed a mountain.
Taken a Ferrari for a test drive.
Been inside the Great Pyramid.
Held a tarantula.
Said 'I love you' and meant it.
Hugged a tree.
Bungee jumped.
Visited Paris.
Watched a lightning storm at sea.
Stayed up all night long and watch the sunrise.
Seen the Northern Lights.
Gone to a huge sports game.
Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
Grown and eaten your own vegetables.
Touched an iceberg.
Slept under the stars.
Changed a baby's diaper.
Taken a trip in a hot air balloon.
Watched a meteor shower.
Given more than you can afford to charity.
Looked up at the night sky through a telescope.
Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment.
Had a food fight.
Bet on a winning horse.
Taken a sick day when you're not ill.
Asked out a stranger.
Had a snowball fight.
Screamed as loudly as you possibly can.
Held a lamb.
Organized and planned a surprise party for a loved one.
Taken an ice cold shower.
Had a meaningful conversation with a beggar.
Seen a total eclipse.
Ridden a roller coaster. (The kid version when I was 8 counts, right?)
Hit a home run. (Family game counts in my book)
Fit three weeks miraculously into three days.
Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking. :-)( Not your normal
dancing but Cilla remembers!)
Adopted an accent for an entire day.
Visited the birthplace of your ancestors.
Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment.
Had two hard drives for your computer.
Visited all 50 states.
Loved your job for all accounts.
Taken care of someone who was really sick.
Had enough money to be truly satisfied.
Have amazing friends.
Danced with a stranger in a foreign country.
Watched wild whales.
Stolen a sign.
Backpacked in Europe.
Taken a road-trip.
Gone rock climbing.
Midnight walk on the beach.
Visited Ireland.
In a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them.
Visited Japan.
Bench pressed your own weight.
Milked a cow. ( It was a good attempt!)
Alphabetized your cds.
Pretended to be a superhero.
Sung karaoke.
Lounged around in bed all day.
Protested something you feel strongly against.
Gone scuba diving.
Kissed in the rain.
Played in the rain.
Gone to a drive-in theater.
Done something you should regret, but don't regret it.
Started a business.
Dropped Windows in favor of something better.
Toured ancient sites.
Taken a martial arts class for 7 years or more.
Swordfought for the honor of a woman.
Played a DVD or VHS for more than 6 hours straight.
Been in a movie.
Crashed a party.
Gotten divorced.
Started an office war.
Gone without food for 5 days.
Made cookies from scratch.
Won first prize in a costume contest.
Ridden a gondola in Venice.
Gotten a tattoo.
Rafted the Snake River.
Been on television news programs as an "expert."
Got flowers for no reason.
Got so drunk you don't remember anything.
Been addicted to some form of illegal drug.
Performed on stage.
Recorded music. (Everyone has heard of the song, Our Wagon Train, right?)
Eaten shark.
Gone to Thailand.
Seen Siouxsie live.
Bought a house.
Been in a combat zone.
Buried one/both of your parents.
Shaved all of your hair off.
Been on a cruise ship.
Spoken more than one language fluently.
Gotten into a fight while attempting to defend someone.
Bounced a check.
Performed in theatre.
Read - and understood - your credit report. (Easy, "You have no
Raised children.
Taken a bicycle tour in a foreign country.
Found out something significant that your ancestors did.
Called or written your Congress person.
Picked up and moved to another city to just start over.
Walked the Golden Gate Bridge.
Sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking.
(I remember the days in Aunt Rachel's station wagon!)
Had an abortion.
Had plastic surgery.
Survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived.
Held someone while they were having a flashback.
Piloted an airplane.
Pet a stingray.
Broken someone's heart.
Helped an animal give birth.
Been fired or laid off from a job.
Won money on a T.V. game show.
Broken a bone.
Gone on an African photo safari.
Ridden on a motorcycle.
Driven any land vehicle at a speed of greater than 100km/h.
Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol.
Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild.
Ridden a horse.
Had major surgery.
Ridden on a passenger train.
Had a snake as a pet.
Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
Slept through an entire flight: takeoff, flight, and landing.
Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours.
Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states.
Visited all 7 continents.
Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days.
Eaten kangaroo meat.
Fallen in love at an ancient Mayan burial ground
Eaten sushi.
Had your picture in the newspaper.
Changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about.
Gotten someone fired for their actions.
Gone back to school.
Changed your name. (When I got married?)
Petted a cockroach.
Eaten fried green tomatoes.
Selected one "important" author who you missed in school, and read a book by them.
Dined in a restaurant and stolen silverware, plates, or cups because your apartment needed hem.
Taught yourself an art from scratch.
Killed and prepared an animal for eating. (Grasshopper counts, right? And fish?)
Apologized to someone years after inflicting the hurt.
Skipped all your school reunions.
Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language.
Been elected to public office.
Written your own computer language.
Thought to yourself that you're living your dream.
Had to put someone you love into hospice care.
Built your own PC from parts.
Sold your own art to someone who didn't know you.
Had a booth at a street fair.
Dyed your hair.
Been a DJ.
Been arrested.
Hated someone.
Fell in the North Sea.
Swam naked in the ocean.
Watched every episode of a TV series since it's series premier.
Had a 3-hour conversation with an animal.
Put makeup on a boy.

Okay, now you guys try it!

I could just cry!

I just wrote a post. It took me all morning, off and on in between taking care of my family and other responsibilities. Then I lost it. It's gone. I will try to write it again, but I already did! :-(

Monday, July 25, 2005

Peach Heaven

Right now we are in full swing in our peach orchard. Peaches are getting ripe, some of the earlier varieties are now too ripe and are falling off the trees. David is busy every day that he is home, picking and sorting. Every other day he goes to Abilene to the farmer's market and sells peaches. And then usually picks when he gets home. We have people coming out to the farm every day. Some come to pick their own but more come to buy them already picked. It is fast paced right now, but won't last long. The middle of August we will be done, or somewhere around then.

I haven't been feeling just right the last few days, well, for a couple weeks really. I am running a low grade fever a lot and am not sure why. I am going to make an appoinment with a NP today. She is really nice and seems to know her stuff.

Well, my little people are starting to get up. I need to take care of them. I had more that I wanted to write, but there will be another time! :-)

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Blogthings - You Are Chocolate Ice Cream

You Are Chocolate Ice Cream
You have a flair for the dramatic and love to party.
Your personality is super strong and unique.
Many people crave you constantly - while you turn a few off.
You are most compatible with coffee ice cream.

I love chocolate and chocolate peanut butter!

Saturday, July 23, 2005

"But I might need it!"

I have to write about what has happened to me over the last few months.

First a bit of background.

I grew up in a very disfunctional family. Even though I was homeschooled, my family was not what you would call organized. We were not a good example of a homeschool family. Although the way our house was kept, or not kept, was just one of the problems, it made it very hard for me after I got married. I had to learn from the ground up how to keep a house clean. I could plow through a big nasty mess, (and I will spare you all any further details), but as for knowing how to maintain a clean house I was clueless. It was hard, let me tell you! I would go in to make a meal and if the kitchen was clean I would have it totally wrecked in no time. My husband called in the "Shipwreck Mentality." Get the meal fixed and on the table at all costs and don't worry about the mess, we will never need this kitchen again. When we go to bed, it will all disinagrate anyway and be gone by morning. Only, it wasn't. I would wake up to a huge mess in the morning. Oh well, now we have to get breakfast done at all costs. So I would make another meal on top of that one and wreck the kitchen further, if that was possible. And of course when you are living that way, you don't wash the dishes after a meal. My normal routine was as follows.

  1. Fix a meal and wreck the kitchen.
  2. Eat and leave the mess.
  3. Fix the next meal as best as can be done in a wrecked kitchen.
  4. Eat and leave the mess.
  5. When it is time to fix the next meal, start trying to plow out from under the mess and hurriedly clean up the kitchen a bit. Fix the meal and wreck it all again.
  6. Eat and leave the mess 'cause it is time to go to bed.
  7. Repeat steps 1-6.

Needless to say this was a hopeless way to live. My poor husband suffered through all this, trying to help me.

Slowly I learned new habits. I started looking for help anywhere. I listened to people that had functional homes and lives. I asked my mother-in-law for advise and help. (I will write more about all the things I learned later.) Changes were made slowly but I did change.

However, even with all the changes, I was still struggling to maintain my house. I have a small house and didn't think that I had that much stuff in it, certianly not as much as some people. But my attic space was a disaster that I thought needed to just be organized, my laundry was impossible and I was constantly picking up clutter. I thought that I needed to just work harder.

I did a lot of praying about it. And crying. I felt like God kept saying to focus on Him and not worry about the mess. So I did as best as I could.

Then one day I just realized what I was doing. God just opened my eyes. It all basically boiled down to a trust issue. I was holding onto stuff that I didn't need because I was afraid that I wouldn't have what I needed if I didn't. I might not be happy. So I had saved stuff that I didn't like or want, stuff that was junk or that I just didn't need. Once I realized what I was doing, I saw how silly it was. So I got busy and pulled junk from every corner of my house. I threw away a bunch of it and hauled the rest to the Goodwill and a yard sale the youth in our church were having. Now here is the funny/pitiful part. Less than a week after I got done getting rid of it all, someone came to my house. I told them what had happened, (my house looked great), and they asked me, "So, what was in here making the mess?" I couldn't answer them. I couldn't remember! Some attatchment I had to all that stuff!

Realizing that I can let go of stuff and I will be okay has changed my life. My house stays much cleaner now. I just had a baby almost 8 weeks ago. My house didn't fall apart and turn into a landfill like with my other babies. Oh, it gets cluttered and looks lived in, but it so easy to manage now. I am so excited about my new way of life. And I know it sounds funny that a housework problem could be caused by a heart issue with God. I am so glad that He showed me this, and I am looking forward to learning more.

Friday, July 22, 2005

The Purpose of my Blog

Before I get too far on my blog I would like to write a bit about my purpose in writing here.

One reason is that I need an outlet to express the things I am learning about in my life, in the areas of homemaking, my journey with God, etc. Writing is a good way for me to do this. And if anyone benefits from reading about my struggles, victories, etc, then they are all worth it.

I have been blessed by reading some blogs of other Christian women. I appreciate them and other women who open a window into their lives so that we can see their victories, failures, ideas, get advise or encouragement when we need it. Being a homemaker is not exactly encouraged in our society. Many of us stay at home moms feel pretty alone sometimes. I want my blog to be another voice of encouragement to women, cheering them on in their calling as mothers.

I am also looking forward to meeting new friends through blogging. Although I will not be able to spend a lot of time reading blogs, I look forward to getting to peek into other women's lives a bit and see the world from their perspective.

The last thing I want to say in this post is that I will not be letting this blog run my life. :-) Those may be famous last words, but that is my resolve. I have not decided yet just when I will post, but it will be morning or evening, and I think I am leaning toward morning. If I don't set a time to do it it will run my life. I am going to keep a list of things I want to post about on my desk and then when it is time to post, I won't forget to post it. (This is an idea I borrowed from Candy, thanks for sharing that Candy.)

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Something About Me

I don't know if anyone is reading my blog yet or not, but I would like to introduce myself and my family in this post.

My name is Nichola Files and I am married to David, the best guy in Texas. We have been married for 4 1/2 years now and have 3 children. Keilah (3), Jakin (18 months), and Sarah (7 weeks). We live on a farm in Central Texas. We raise peaches in the summer and have a pick your own peach orchard where people can come pick their own tree-ripened peaches. In the spring we operate a greenhouse where we raise garden plants such as tomato plants, pepper plants, etc. We sell most of our plants wholesale to garden centers and feed stores. We also raise cattle and do a few other misc. crops. Right now we are very busy and covered up with peaches. We have a very good crop this year and are staying very busy harvesting and selling the peaches.

I stay at home with our children and help run our business. That is a full-time job. :-) I love what I do and am very content. Some think that I could have had a life, made something of myself, been somebody. Those who think that have not seen what I do! I am constantly learning and growing in my abilities and talents. I have often told my husband that I am not missing out on building a career, I am doing it right here. I spend a lot of time taking care of my kids, changing diapers, training, feeding etc. And I spend a lot of time cleaning house, although I am learning to spend less and less. :-) But I also spend a lot of time taking care of our business, thinking of new ways to market our products, learning how to build websites, talking with customers, etc. I love what I do. If I could have picked a career out of a book, this is what I would have picked.

This is a small introduction. If anyone reads my blog then you will find out in future posts more about me.

If you read this, would you do me a favor and comment so I will know that someone is reading this?

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Hello Blogland!

This is my new blog! I will use this place to record my thoughts about different subjects and life issues.

I am excited about the posts to come. and will probably edit this one later! :-)