September’s Laborious Monday {Pass The Smiles, Please}

Pass the Smiley cup, please!
I need a Refill!

photo credit: Rooey202 via photo pin cc
Well, I hope you have all had a wonderful last week of Summer. My dear Hubby was off last week and spent most of the week painting our Girl’s room and new Loft bed, which we had bought at a local consignment shop. Another sacrificial moment from my hub and another reason why He is awesome. 
Speaking of Awesome Husband moments, I stumbled upon a link from a fellow blogger who is sharing her awesome hubby list and encouraging others to do so! This only convinced me further that Great Minds Think Alike. Ahem…In my humble opinion. OK, well here is the Link to this sister who just last week (freaky, yes?), had a My Husband Is Awesome link up! Not sure if it is regular or not BUT…

Is anyone feeling mixed feelings at the start of September? 
I am…I long for the structure, routine and change, 
yet am also feeling amazingly overwhelmed at the same time. 
This leads me to lean heavy on His word. 
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you,
 for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 
Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, 
so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
2 Corinthians 12:9

Mission Accomplished!

Best Pizza EVER! Hubs made it: fresh dough,
garden fresh tomatoes, eggplant and basil, olive oil,
garlic and cheese!
Best  Birthday Card Ever from
my sweet friend, Jen!

My Girl and friend admiring the Waterfall and pond at
John and Carol Z.’s. 

Sweet Carol, her and her hub host a wonderful Family Barbecue
each year!Shown here with a special bottle of her favorite wine
which she shared with me.

My hub and his sweet mom, Grace. 

this week
Friday, September 7th!
My Multitudes on Monday:

287. Orange ball sunrise over the ocean this morning slipping through a strip of cloud sitting on the horizon. 
288. Our sweet puppy, always ready for a ride,
furry faithful friend
289. The hope found in John 14 and 15. 
290. Clinging to His unchanging Word when my emotions are as loopy as a roller coaster ride.
291. Wednesdays with my MIL, Grace- blessing 
292. My hubby and all his awesomeness
293. Family and friends in abundance
294. Our new church family and membership
295. The understanding that I am part of more 
than one local body but His Body- 
The church universal which comes through His Spirit

Linking with old and new friends here:

miscellany monday at lowercase letters

More Reasons My Hubby Is Awesome {Why You Need To Make A List}}

Awhile back I wrote a post titled  The Top Ten Reasons Why My Husband Is Awesome.
You know, marriage is not easy. 
We all have our own little quirks and life can leave us a little nearsighted
 with regard to those who are closest to us. 
Specifically our husbands. 
But the beauty of our relationship with Christ is that we have the power, possibility,
and provision to have a marriage that glorifies Him, because 
He makes all things possible, for those who believe and are willing to 
lay down their own rights to themselves for something so much more divine. 
(Philippians 4:13, 2 Peter 1:3, John 3:33)
But still, I prefer he brushes his teeth in the morning before 
my morning kiss even though that does not always happen. 
Moving on.
I felt I needed to update my list with a picturesque fun addition.
My hubs is on vacation this week and he is working on an
 extreme room makeover for our Girl!
Another reason he is awesome!

He Rocks My World
I love rocks. I see so much God in them. It’s just my thing.
So this year while in Maine visiting Coos Canyon, my hubby
 hid this away in his pocket for a full 24
hours before showing me his special find!
That is big for him, he barely can contain himself when it comes to giving
 things to his loved ones! And he wrote the little love note on it , too.
I know, say it: “awwww”.
He Enjoys My Goofiness
We laugh a lot. About ridiculous, silly things.
Since I am an expert goof, this is good.

He Adds Beauty To My Life
& Sweet Surprises 
(which I sometimes don’t notice until he tells me)

Case in point. I had picked some flowers and put them on the table.
The next day my hubby added the two small glasses with Black Eyed Susans.
As I putzed around the kitchen he finally asked if I had noticed anything.
 Um, no, course I did not.
But when I did, I was reminded of his 
thoughtful touches of beauty
which he is always adding to my life.
 He’s Patient With Me
and Doesn’t Mind The Occasional 
PB & J!
Sometimes he gets this in his lunch.
And he is OK with that.
Seriously, he puts up with this
 Give that man a HALO! 
Now I have an assignment for you, ladies:
Make your own list of the reasons why your husband is 
the awesome and sweetest guy 
God gave you and relish it and him. 
Let’s bring glory to God by making sure we 
enjoy the husbands God has given us.
Even when our eyesight is a little off.
Maybe even More so then. 
Go, make your list!

A Simple Plan To Follow Your Man

Trust in the LORD and do good;dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 

 Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Psalm 37:3-4

No, he ‘s not perfect. Neither am I. We are alike in imperfection yet opposite in many ways as individuals. We are united in marriage, in Christ, who has given us everything, despite our personal preferences and differences. Today I want to take a moment and  tell you that your husband does not need to be perfect for you to learn from him. You see my hubby and I are as opposite in personality, background  and make-up as you can get. But I want to tell you I still learn from him. God desires that I do. Even though sometimes I make it difficult for my sweet husband, God has blessed him with patience and humor which make the journey somewhat easier for him. Hopefully. Ahem.

Today, I will to share three ways we can follow our husbands regardless of their choices. I say this because we can tend to be distracted by the various splinters our husbands sport, while we stare through beam filled eyes the size of telephone poles. OK, maybe I am preaching to the choir, but at least now you see a clear image in your mind, yes?

God has a simple plan and when we follow it, even somewhat reluctantly, He blesses each step and encourages us in His ways. What I lack in domesticity, I make up for in my heart to please God and willingness to allow Him to conform me to His image. God is patient with me and He will be patient with you. We can do it, through Him who does indeed promise to PROVIDE when we DECIDE in our hearts to commit and follow Him.

1. Commit: When I used to train for competition, once I was committed to a certain date to compete, regardless of my feelings, it meant I was committed to my training plan. Some days I would not feel like going to the gym. I learned that if I wanted to remain competitive or potentially win, I needed to train consistently whether I had the warm fuzzies about my training on that particular day. Sometimes I had to push myself to get to the gym, or through the workout, BUT in the end the commitment carried me on to progress and victory. It’s the same with marriage (and most things in life). But Christ will empower us as we rely on Him. Don’t wait for the feelings, the feelings may or may not follow. But your continued trust and reliance on something- in this case some-ONE- outside of yourself will get you through and carry you to victory. One day at a time.  

Commit to the LORD whatever you do, 

   and he will establish your plans.

Proverbs 16:3

Commit your way to the LORD; 

   trust in him and he will do this: 

 He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, 

   your vindication like the noonday sun.

Psalm 37:5-6

2. Lay Down: So often that which seems good can undermine a marriage. I am talking about “rights”. I know this is not popular and I do not have it all down, but marriage is a continual laying down
of my rights to myself. Period. The minute we forget this, we are going down roads that lead us far from God and His plans for our lives as women and Believers. I know there is a balance and uniqueness in each circumstance. But this reality should be a reminder that we always can choose. We must weigh carefully in light of His words and our commitment to Him and others. Last night my hubby came home tired after a hard day at work. He sweetly brought home two boxes of dye and became my hairdresser, because I was whining about my grey hair and a presentation I needed to make. In this he modeled, once again his own laying down of his desires that my needs may be met. This is what we do. Now don’t get all upset because your hubby would never do this for you. Instead consider the way he uniquely serves you that you may not even be recognizing. Of course, most of all learn to lay down. I know I am learning. Slowly. 

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.
John 15:13
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, 
but in humility consider others better than yourselves. 
Philippians 2:3
3. Decide and Delight: Decide to trust God and delight in Him. Decide to delight in your husband’s strengths, uniqueness and positive attributes as opposed to his perceived shortcomings. I know earlier, I said I was reluctant. God knows our true heart’s desire. Sometimes we think we know best. This must be balanced by the wisdom of His word. He knows my reluctant heart and is the process of transforming and conforming it to His own. He will make me into that cheerful giver, I long to be. He is doing the same for and in my husband. This  does not always work out in the same manner and he uses our marriage as a grand arena for it all to be won or lost.
Decide, Delight and Fight for God’s plan of victory for your marriage!

The LORD makes firm the steps 
   of the one who delights in him; 
 though he may stumble, he will not fall, 
   for the LORD upholds him with his hand.
Psalm 37:23

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, 
   neither are your ways my ways,” 
            declares the LORD.
Isaiah 55:8
Remember this: 
Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, 
and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. 
Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, 
not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
2 Corinthians 9:6-7

Hope this makes sense!

There you have it, my simple plan for following your man!
By the way: My secret to getting my hubby to read my BLOG is by writing about HIM! Hi Honey! Love you!

The ABC’s of Love (Part 4) Two Worlds Collide

What does real love look like?

If you have read the previous posts (see links below) you know that my view of marriage was shaky at best. 
God is still redeeming and transforming my mind and me so this is not something that I take lightly. My husband has a Catholic background and a stronger positive impression of marriage than I, thanks to the sweet example of his parents who have been married for 54 years. Our backgrounds are as different as night and day. But God did marry the night and day after all in Genesis, now that I think of it. A creative match maker He is, I would dare say! 
It was July. 1983. I am working at a little Salad/Yogurt place in Downtown, Providence called Natural Sweetness. I am in the role of Supervisor at 18 years old. He begins work after school, 16. I am his boss. 
See me smiling. See God beginning His amusing work and knitting destiny, unknowingly to us. I am getting back on track after a young life of, for lack of a better word, rebellion. Which at this point, really is not finished. His mom works across the street at Blue Cross and has landed him an after school job by inquiring of the boss. 
He comes in and I hand him one of my infamous “To Do” lists. I am obsessed with keeping the upstairs well stocked. He lugs bottles, jugs, jars and boxes up and down the stairs. It is my job to train him. Train him I do. I hand him the mop. I close out the register. He quietly works. At the end of our shift he takes a bus home. I take a bus to the other side of the city. 
I am not sure at what point we become friends. I observe him. Young, hard-working. I feel old. Well beyond my years. I feel somewhat protective of him and yet, I myself am in need of protection. I am crass to his class, and we do become friends, eventually. What it means at the time is not what either of us expect.
The beginning of our friendship will be the start of a commitment of a lifetime. But at this point in time he is in school and I am travelling a road to nowhere. But God, my friends, is in it. Right from the start. Isn’t He always?
If anyone would have said to me right then, this is your future husband, I would have thought they were crazy. I was not figuring him anymore than God because at this point God was as distant to me as the possibility of marrying him. Or anyone. But, God. 
Next Time I will write about our first very amusing “date”…
P.S. The picture above was taken during our anniversary last year aboard 

The ABC’s of Love (Part 2)

Stay tuned for the Real Secret to a happy marriage- at the end!

The idea of an ABC album is such a fun and easy thing to do as a special gift of encouragement as well as a great reminder years after it has been given! It can be as simple as you want it or more elaborate. I gave mine as a Christmas gift but it makes a sweet Valentine gift! One picture per page is fine, I tend to crowd mine. This was also made the first year I started scrap-booking so I was just having fun, and not so worried about making “perfect” pages!

What you need:  A small album
                            Some favorite pictures
                            Adhesive, cutting tools

                        Keep it simple and have fun! For each letter of the alphabet brainstorm memories, character qualities, significant events, fun words and themes that are unique and special to you and your significant other. Add messages, quotes, or scripture to encourage your special recipient. Seek to bless and believe me it will be a blessing for the giver and the receiver in years to come!

The Last Page:
And great advice in a little quip of words by Ogden Nash! 
My hubby is much better at practicing this than I am! 
There you have it. 
A quick, easy to make Valentine Album 
to give your special someone!
Have fun creating it.
Believe me, it is a great visual reminder 
of your thoughts,
 feelings and unique gift of love!
If you make one and share it, let me know –
 I would love to see your Love Album!

So would you like me to continue where we left off in this 
unconventional love story in Part 1?

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