It Was a Victory for Single Moms Everywhere

Alternately titled: It’s Just a Good Thing McDonald’s Doesn’t Sell Liquor

When I walk through my house and catch my reflection in the massive mirror that hangs on my living room wall, I see a strong woman staring back at me. I also see a woman who is dressed and has her makeup done. I’m no longer afraid of a knock at my door. And I’m ready to go at a moment’s notice. Well, except before nine a.m. (and if you stop by before my morning coffee, you’re basically just asking for trouble). Necessity really is the mother of invention, I suppose. When it’s absolutely necessary that you rebuild your self esteem (well, that or die and leave your children motherless), you can somehow locate the money for clothes and the time for fixing your hair. Of course, I regret my basic slob-ish-ness while my husband was still living here. Some things just disappear when you have four children within sixteen months (and five within four years). I’m not unique in my abandonment of my womanhood. But I still believe that I’ll get a second chance.

That entire first paragraph was a rabbit trail, I suppose, but it’s all connected in my head. Yesterday, it snowed (and it’s continued throughout today). I drank my coffee in the morning, and I devised a plan to clean my house. I’d already rearranged our school week to accommodate a friend (who needed someone to watch her four year old boy), so it seemed like a good day for cleaning. I was just finishing the kitchen when I saw an e-mail from my mother-in-law. She’d ordered a fantastic porch swing for my birthday, and I’d forgotten to pick it up from Wal-Mart! I hopped on FB and asked if anyone was in Taos with a truck. After about an hour, though, I decided that I was going to have to get it by myself. I first texted our guest’s mom to make sure a forty-five minute drive in the snow was alright with her. It was. So, I hollered, “Everybody get your coats! We’re going to McDonald’s!” And about thirty minutes later, we were off.

The deal was that if they were good in Wal-Mart, we’d stop at McDonald’s for lunch. The drive was fine, and it seemed that the snow was basically limited to my little town. When we pulled into the Wal-Mart parking lot, I paused. “Hmmm….I sure hope it will fit in here,” I said as I glanced over six seats filled with miniature people.  But the back end of my van is big and roomy…so I was hopeful.

As we sat (and sat) in the Site-to-Store waiting area, I grew more and more nervous. And when the clerk wheeled a giant package out of the storage room, my jaw dropped and my stomach sank. “That’s never going to fit,” I muttered. I signed for it, though (because otherwise it would be shipped back from whence it came), and we all followed the clerk to the front. On our way out the door, the clerk grabbed a man from customer service because everyone else was on break. He asked me to pull my car around, and so six ducklings and I headed to the van.

When I pulled around and opened the back, the man laughed. “This isn’t going to fit,” he said. The woman and I insisted on trying, however. “What about diagonally?” we asked. And he tried, but it was still just a little too big.

“It’s going to have to go in over the seats,” he exclaimed.

“But every seat is full.”

Then, after a moment or two of silent pondering…”It’s going to have to go in over the seats.”

“Every seat is full.”

When I saw him lift the box, I tried again. “Every seat is full!!” Then, as he prepared to give it a shove, I yelled, “Eeeeeverybody DUCK!!!!!”

I ran around to the sliding door to examine the carnage and found Baby Bear and Bay bit (both in middle seats) scrunched like tiny hunchbacks. Then I turned back to glare at the shover. He wore a victorious smile. I cocked my head. My expression would have been the same if he’d hovered twelve inches off the ground and then landed before anyone else had noticed. “That’s not going to work,” I said.

The clerk informed me that they could only hold the package for another hour. So, I said goodbye. And I drove around to the side of the building to handle matters by myself.

Papa Bear has a knife on him at all times. I, on the other hand, had the forks from a fondue set. And, amongst the potting soil and play sand, I hacked at the tape and staples like a serial killer in a rush.

Women drove by and paused. Men drove by and laughed. About ten minutes later, though, I had loaded all of the pieces into my van. I raised the box over my head and shook it just to be sure it was empty. Then, sweaty and windblown, I walked back around to my door.

I left the box to die. Don’t judge me.

And with the thrill of victory, I announced to six patient passengers, “OK, that was easy. Now let’s go to McDonald’s!”

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God is my Defender

Last year, I wrote one of my most popular posts on marriage.

This year, it makes me cringe.

First of all, I meant every word of the post I wrote last year. It’s a good post. And, at the time that I wrote it, I believe I was truly living out those words. But Satan has thrown so many things at us, as a couple, that we’ve hardly had one normal year to just breathe. That’s OK, though, because the more Satan reveals that he hates us, the more I am determined to fight!

Thank you to the many of you who are fighting with me…and, let’s face it, for me when I’m not strong enough!

Yesterday, I [finally] had a long and wonderful talk with my sweet husband. It seems that, after about six months of separation, he is just now able to express to me how much I have wounded him over the past four years (especially the last one). Some of you are prickling at that; because, as wives, we like to remain blameless.

Let me just stop you there because…we’re not.

Now, before I write a whole post about how awful I am, let me say that there is absolutely no biblical and therefore justified reason to leave a spouse who has not committed adultery (although we can safely add physical/sexual abuse to that short list). Every issue that arises in a marriage can and should be worked out. And a loss of “feeling” for a spouse is the absolute worst and least justified reason to leave. BUT, as half of one whole person, we should always be chasing after and pursing our lover’s heart. Just as there is no justification for leaving a marriage, there is no justification for not being…lovable.

“Why didn’t you tell me you felt beat down by me?”

“Because I thought that I deserved it.”


This is the dialog that has been replaying in my head since yesterday. And when I questioned God about the reality of it all, I heard this, and nothing else.

“Well, he tortured you for three and a half years, and then you tortured him for four.”

[Baby, if you ever read this. I’d really like to call it even.]

Adultery is horrible. It’s violent and bloody and it rips one flesh into two. I actually can’t even begin to describe how painful the reality is, and I know that some of you can testify to that. But when we forgive, as Christians, we get to lay all of that down! All of it!! We don’t have to carry it around.

Tonight, a friend of mine quoted Charles Stanley as saying, “Forgiveness means they no longer owe me anything.” Wow. And I mean that. Because I thought that I’d forgiven my husband, but he still owed me…big time.

And I supposed I forced him to pay. Long after the crime had been committed, and with nothing he could do to undo it, I still allowed myself to be in pain. And occasionally, I purposefully allowed him to witness my pain…just to make sure he still got it.

In the post I wrote last year, I talked about trust. I still believe that trust should be placed in God and not in a man. But, well…now I really believe it. If I had it to do over again, and my husband came home two hours late, I wouldn’t need to ask him where he was. I would have already settled the issue, with God, when he was ten minutes late! God is my defender. God is my defender. God is my defender. And if my husband had to leave for God to teach me that…I guess I’ll have to thank him someday. I know it’s a radical idea. And I don’t mean to imply that a wife should allow her husband to cheat or abuse her. I simply mean that I, as a believer, was trying to do God’s job. If there was something I needed to know, as Papa Bear’s wife, God could (and would) have brought it to the light without my nagging and prodding at my (usually, as it would turn out, blameless) husband.

I’m a better person since my husband left me. I’m about three times as productive and I’m actually getting out of the house. That wounded housewife that cared so much about what the world [via Red River, New Mexico] thought of her that she, debilitated by fear, sent her husband to the grocery store for the milk…yeah, she’s gone now. And I’m glad. She was always holding me back.

It’s about me now. And whatever there is to learn….I’m gonna learn it. By the grace of God…I’m gonna live it.

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Happy Passover!!

Ummmm…can you tell which one had just been pitching 
a fit about a shoe?

May the blood of the Lamb cover your household and free you from death and sin!


Bay Bit knows what it means to be under the Blood!







May the beauty of the cross surround you and lift your eyes until Jesus is all that you see. Happy Passover, everyone. I hope you’re having a wonderful week. I’ll be back when I have something to say.

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I Wish He Was Mine

Today, a commenter asked me if I wouldn’t mind blogging about Vanya (which is funny because I was already considering it). I didn’t realize until today that Adeye was hosting a Love-a-thon for him, though (she didn’t call it that, but that’s what it was. Ha.). The fundraiser has ended now (so I’m not asking you to give a dime). They raised almost $16,000!


Because Vanya would really like to come home.

From Adeye:

“He believes that some day he will have a family to love him and he will get to live in a “real home.”  It’s a dream he believes WILL come true.”

“Here’s the reality–Vanya is on a list to be transferred from his current orphanage. Once an orphan reaches a certain age, they are usually transferred to a heinous mental institution for older children and adults. Vanya will be transferred any day now, and no one knows where he will be moved to. It is an undisclosed place from which he will never be able to be adopted. Vanya will live the rest of his childhood in this place and when he is old enough to be released, well, who knows what awaits him? I can’t even think about that as an option.”

I don’t believe that this has to be Vanya’s future. Do you?

All of the funds raised will be given to Vanya’s forever family to help with the adoption costs. And I imagine that more will be coming as needed (cause that’s just how the Body works)! So, if you’ve wanted to adopt, but you just couldn’t because of the money….maybe this is your dream come true?!

I know it can be Vanya’s!

Someone is meant to go after him. I’m sure of that! If you feel that tug on your heart that’s beyond simply human and maternal but is truly from God, please go NOW and learn more about this little boy. And when I say now…I mean NOW….if he’s transfered, it will be too late.

Urgent note from Adeye:

“We desperately need a family for Vanya as soon as possible. Many people have inquired about adopting him. But things have changed and we URGENTLY need a family who is paperwork ready –one who has already done their home study and has USCIS approval.We need a family who can get to him quickly.”

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