Taking Life One Step At A Time

Taking Life One Step At  A Time

Friday, January 20, 2012

Beautiful Hands

This morning I watched as you discovered your hands. Your fat little fingers reached out and grasped hold of mine. And as you brought my hand toward your mouth your eyes widened with wonder.

I began to dream of what those hands may someday do.

You may have the hands of a craftsman. A mechanic or woodworker. Rough, calloused hands. Useful hands.
Beautiful hands.

Perhaps your hands will be soft. Hands used to press keys on the computer. Hands used to write. Hands forming words of impact and influence.
Beautiful hands.

Your hands may be dirty from working the soil. They may stroke the fur of a beloved pet or firmly grip the chalk as you mold young minds. They could grasp the ragged rocks as you climb a mountain or gently pick fruit from a tree to share with a friend. Hands that delight in the world around you.
Beautiful hands.

Someday I pray your hands will be wrinkled from soaking in the dish water. Crusted with paint from a child's art project. Recovering from a paper cut after folding yet another paper airplane. Hands used to brush silky hair, change stinky diapers, dress little bodies. Hands that will cause the laughter of ticklish children. Hands that steady your bride on your wedding day. Family hands.
Beautiful hands.

Your hands can be used to bring comfort to the aged. Food to the hungry. Peace to the harassed. Help to the helpless. Hands of compassion.
Beautiful hands.

Of all these things, my greatest desire is for you to have hands of worship. Hands that are raised in adoration of the King. Hands that hold a worn Bible. Hands that frequently fold in prayer.

Because if your hands hold firm to these tasks, your hands will reflect the greatest hands. Hands that are scarred. Hands that stretched out on a cross. Hands strong enough to hold all your dreams, pains, fears, and joys. Christ's hands.
Beautiful hands.

Friday, January 13, 2012


I heard about Five Minute Fridays from Nancy last week. And man, I wish I had known about it before Friday was over because the word of the week was awesome. Sometime I'll have to do a post about the word "Roar" because I have some great thoughts on it.

Here's the description of what Five Minute Fridays are about:
1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in.
3. Most important: comment and encourage the person who linked up before you.

This week the word is "Awake". And I figure I've got a few thoughts on that too. So here we go ...

Awake. Remind me of what that means again? Awake is hard to come by when you have five children. But even harder to come by when one of those is an infant. Some mornings I wake feeling that I've only just closed my eyes to sleep. Being physically tired can cause you to walk though life in a haze.

But there are those days when I've had a great night's sleep and I'm fully awake. Physically, that is. But nomatter my physical state, sometimes I notice that I've been walking in a spiritual haze. Asleep. Unaware. Missing out.

At the end of the day, have I noticed the things that really matter? Has my soul found peace through communion with it's Maker? Did I recognize the great calling I have in being a mother and wife? Did I find joy in the simple things?

Things like the privilege of teaching a child to read, sloppy baby kisses, a brother and sister happily dancing together in the living room. Moments of warm sunshine streaming in through the window, the smell of a delicious dinner cooking all day in the crockpot, the sound of my mother's voice on the phone, the touch of a small hand in mine. Wonder at the tiny toes of a little one, the creative imagination of a pre-teen, the incredible fact that I lack nothing I need.

Yes, it's easy to be physically awake even when tired. It's harder to be awake to the world around us, the marvels that greet us each and every moment of the day.

Wake up, O my soul! Stir from your slumber and partake in the beauty that surrounds.


Thursday, January 12, 2012


Our little one is quickly growing. He's not only huge in regards to his weight and height, but he's growing up in regards to what he can do. He's only four months old, but I'm sure he can say "Hi". He often says it first thing when he sees us in the morning and even said it to our doctor at his recent check up. (Which tells me I'm not just projecting genius onto him!) He is desperately trying to sit up and loves stretching his legs by standing and jumping on our laps.

It's that last one that made us think perhaps he might like the Johnny Jump Up that's been in storage since our second child was itty bitty. The only child of ours that loved the jumper was Zack. He would spend HOURS jumping. In fact, since he was an early riser, we would get up, put baby Zack in the jumper and head back to bed. A couple of hours later, he'd still be happily jumping away or sound asleep in the jumper occasionally bouncing in his sleep.

We've tried the jumper with each of our other children, but no one else would spend more than 2 minutes in it before ear-splitting screaming ensued. However, with Jesse we just had an inkling that he might enjoy it.

Unlike our wonderfully old house in CT, our current home has no wide doorways. We don't have moulding, so there's nothing to really attach the jumper to except door frames. So two nights ago I came home from Abby's gymnastics practice and found Josh sequestered away in the garage building something "sturdy".

When it comes to woodworking, my husband doesn't do anything wimpy. And with five children in the house, that's a really good thing! He has built bookcases, a coffee table, shelving ... and check out this chicken coop he recently finished. We call it the chicken palace.

So I knew that whatever he was building for the jumper would be sturdy enough to hold our little one. I had no idea it would be sturdy enough for a grown man to do pull ups on! Here's the ingenious structure that now sits in our house:

Notice the little guy super happy to be jumping. He's just like his big brother and is happy to jump, jump, jump all day long. Hooray for saving Mommy's back and arms from lugging around a 19 pound four month old!

If you're like me, you're wondering how in the world I can allow something so ... sturdy (read: large) into my house. I did say that this invention was ingenious, did I not? The whole structure comes apart in three sections so that it can be moved into any room of the house or stored easily in the garage at a moment's notice. Hallelujah!! My husband's got skills!

I love that he makes sturdy furniture. I love that when the kids are climbing on said furniture, I don't have to worry about it collapsing or breaking. I know that the things he builds will stand up to the abuse my children can dish out.

But you know what I like more than my husband's sturdy furniture? I like that he is sturdy. He's reliable, he's strong. I know that I can lean on him when times are tough and he'll be able to hold me up. I know that I can depend upon him to keep me grounded and to keep our family deeply rooted in God's Word.

How do I know this? Because Christ is sturdy. And my man is fully commited to following Christ. And since his love for Jesus is greater than his love for me or our children, I can count on him to be a strong, sturdy oak.

Not only can I claim to have a man who builds sturdy furniture, but more importantly I can say that he truly is an "oak of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor." (Psalm 61:3)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

10 on 10: January 2012

ten on ten button

Linking up with Rebekah at A Bit of Sunshine for a little 10 on 10 fun. Thankfully the weather today was GORGEOUS and we were able to spend lots of time outside. Perfect, considering we're supposed to have snow in two days.

Here goes ..