Thursday, July 9, 2015

Back Again

So now that we're moving back to Europe for the next couple of years, I'm going to get the blog back up and running... it'll be the best place to keep up with the things we're doing and not have to have facebook.  Yes... I do still have friends who aren't on facebook! :)

So, check back soon for posts as we prepare to move to SPAIN!!!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Saturday: Bible Times

Final draft of Genesis 3:17... See about the project here...

  I woke up one day.  I have no memory of time before waking up.  Just that I was awake and alive and everything was new.  My father was with me, and as I looked around I saw lots of colors and moving things.  At the edges of myself I could feel wetness even though parts of me were very dry.  I felt a warmth shining on me during the day and cool, sometimes cold breezes on me at night, but my father never left me.  I found that I was able to nourish living things.  They grew out of me and Oh, they were beautiful.  One time, I felt Father pick up a piece of me.  A man was formed from me by my father and I noticed that while he didn’t grow out of me, part of me was used to make him, and he was also nourished by me.  It seemed that everything was nourished by me and I loved providing the fruits and the flowers and all the other things life needed.  Father put this man in charge of me and all the things I nourished.  Father noticed that the man, called Adam, wasn’t as happy as he could be, so he put Adam to sleep and took part of him, just like he did from me, and formed a woman.  Adams called her Eve.  We all had great times after Eve came along.  I loved to spend time with Father and the humans.  I loved that we worked together and I helped Adam nourish his family.  It was so easy and naturally, and none of us had any problems or worries.  I’m not sure when Eve started talking to the serpent, but I know that one day I saw them together.  They were looking at one of my trees and talking.  I saw her reach for it, but then jerked her hand back and walked away.  I love that tree with its beautiful blooms and fruit.  I see the humans go by it every day and pick fruit from other trees around it, but they aren’t allowed to pick the fruit of that tree.  I know there is a good reason, but sometimes I see them looking longingly at it.  They want that fruit, but Father assured them that death would come from the fruit.  No one wants that.  A few days later, I saw the serpent was back with Eve and this time I could hear him telling her that Father hadn’t told her the truth about the tree.  He said it wouldn’t bring death.  Is that true?  Surely Father wouldn’t tell us something that isn’t true.  I see her reach up for the fruit, and this time she takes it.  I really want her to take it because maybe the serpent is right, and maybe this fruit won’t bring death.  She takes a bite.  We all wait.  Nothing happens to her.  The serpent is right.  Now we’re wondering why Father didn’t tell us the truth.  It didn’t bring death.  Eve looks just the same.  Adam was walking along at this time and Eve called to him excitedly to tell him that nothing happened to her after eating the fruit, and it tasted really great.  So Adam immediately tasted the fruit, and he too thought it tasted good.  As soon as Adam and Eve had both tasted the fruit I began to feel different.  I couldn’t point to exactly what was different or what the problem was, but I knew there was something changed.  Adam and Eve didn’t say much after that either.  They both looked at each other in a weird way and then went their
separate ways.  I still didn’t think much about it until I heard Father come into the garden with us.  He usually comes all the time, but this time was different.  Father was walking slowly along by himself and he looked troubled, which I had never seen before.  He actually had to call to Adam and Eve when usually they came running to him when he came to the garden.  He called them more than one time and still they didn’t come.  I was beginning to feel kind of sick, and I was about to ask Father what could be wrong with me when I heard Adam finally speaking to Father.  Everyone sounded sad and hurt and even angry at times.  They were all blaming other things on the decisions they had made.  I couldn’t hear everything they said because I was beginning to feel so weak and sick.  I didn’t like the way I was feeling, and then I heard Father say why I was feeling this way.  He spoke directly to Adam and said, "You listened to your wife and ate fruit from that tree. And so, the ground will be under a curse because of what you did. As long as you live, you will have to struggle to grow enough food.”  I now understood this sickness I was feeling.  I no longer had the strength to help Adam grow things.  I was cursed and no long able to nourish all living things without using all of my strength.  I cried out my pain to Father, and heard him whisper to me, “Don’t worry and be upset.  The pain is here now, but I have a plan and I promise you will live to your fullest one day again.  Believe and have faith.”

Friday, May 23, 2014

Friday: Hoppin' Hobbies!

Here is the update on my latest scrapbook pages... and YES... I AM still in 2010... my boys were just babies!!!  I finished July, and ready to move on to August this week...  You'll have to use your imagination on the pages that are clearly double... :)  Have fun with your hobbies!!!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Thursdays: All About the Kiddos

This is an article I wrote and published here on the blog a couple of years ago about our very first foster child.  It was called "Our 'Extra-Child' Christmas".  It's been a while since I read it, and as I went back and read it again, I realized how close to the surface all of my emotions still are about him.  I'm not sure that will ever go away, but I can at least smile more when I think of the time we had with all of them.  I changed the names of all of the children when I wrote the article, and I'm too lazy to go back and change any of that now.  My children aren't Brady and RJ, and his name isn't Ethan...

It had been a crazy, chaotic, but wonderful six months in the Feeser house. We had completed our foster parenting paperwork in June, and got a call the very next week about a boy. He was already at the DHS (Department of Human Services) office, and they wanted me to come get him. I loaded up my own boys, Brady(4) and RJ(1), and we drove over. When I first saw him I fell in love. He had straight blonde hair that stuck our from his head in all directions, scared and confused blue eyes, and the cutest little nose that I can still see three years later when I close my eyes. He was holding a backpack bigger than his nearly three year old body, and holding a blanket that the DHS worker had given him. My kids were so excited that a new boy was coming to our house, and we soon had him loaded in a car seat and on our way. They played all afternoon together and I had dreams of how easy and great this would all be.
Of course, the "newness" wore off, and he began to act like the little boy he was. A sweet little boy who had been neglected for most of his three years. He wanted to be loved by anyone who would, and in turn, he loved everyone he saw. He was always shy and apprehensive at first, but after just a few minutes he would feel comfortable and come out hugging everyone.
We had more foster children come and go during those first six months with Ethan, but when Christmas came, it was just him. We had already decided to just make him as much a part of the family as possible, so he participated in everything we did, and we loved him just like our own. We also knew that the time was drawing closer and closer that he would be taken from us and sent to live forever with his grandmother in another state. I tried to make everything about that Christmas as special as possible, and I tried to sear the memory of everything we did in my mind so I would never forget it. I always take pictures anyway, just of everyday things (even random butterflies and sunsets), so I have many pictures to look back on that time and remember.
We didn't do anything that year that we wouldn't normally do, but there was still something more special about it all. We tried not to buy him more things just because he was leaving us soon. We tried not to let him get away with bad behaviors just because he wasn't going to be around next Christmas.
Christmas morning was a special time that I will never forget. He came into the living room and saw the tree with all the gifts around it. He just stopped and stared. Brady, our oldest son, who knew what this was all about, ran straight to the tree and started asking which pile was his. But Ethan just stood there and looked. He had never gotten anything from Santa that he could remember, and wasn't sure that anything was for him. I went over to the tree with RJ (who had just turned two) and led Ethan to his pile of toys and clothes from Santa. His face lit up when he realized it was for him, and he never stopped smiling as he and the other boys played with everything they had gotten.
Just two weeks later, I packed up all those toys and clothes and everything else he'd gotten in the six months he was with us, and I loaded him up on an airplane with his grandmother to move away from us forever. He hasn't been with us physically for a Christmas in three years, but those sweet blue eyes and spiky blond hair are in my memories every Christmas morning.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Organization Wednesday

So I went to a couple of stores to try to find Annie Sloan Chalk paint to do my table and chairs.  I'm thinking I'm going to put this off until later this summer where I can be outside all day painting everything... So this project is on hold, and I'm moving down the list of to-do's... next step... Organizing my house!

This is a huge project, and I found a website that is going to offer me a lot of help in this department.  It clearly states in the rules that I don't have to do each of their "weekly" projects in only one week, so I'm going to take my time, and I'll document each step here as we go.

Step One, the kitchen... Here is some "before" pictures... yes, that sexy man comes in and washes my dishes every night!!

Hopefully in a week's time I'll be finished with this room... if you want to join me in the Organization 101, follow this link and check out the rules... They did this in 2013, but it's new to me, and that's all that matters!!

Wish me luck!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Park Quest - Regions

So I've mapped out all of the park locations and divided them (roughly) into different regions.  This way we can concentrate our efforts in a single location, and knock out more quests at a time.  I'm also going to read the descriptions and determine if the quests will take a whole day or if they can be done in half a day, so we'll know if we can do two in one day or if we'll need to allow extra time.

Western Maryland
  • Big Run State Park - 175 miles from me - Swanton, MD - A Treemendous Adventure - Camping (No cell service / no potable water) - Self-guided Quest

Mid-Western Maryland
  • Western Maryland Rail Trail - 95 miles from me - Big Pool, MD - Get Outside and Bike - 10 mile roundtrip bike or hike trail - Camping
  • South Mountain State Park - 66 miles from me - Middletown, MD - Operation Signal Station Decoded - Bonus Quest is AT! - Ice Cream upon completion

Central Maryland
  • History Quest - 26 miles from me - Edgemere, MD - Battle of North Point - Driving Quest 

North Eastern Maryland
  • Elk Neck State Park - 74 miles from me - North East, MD - Be A Chesapeake Bay Waterman - Camping - Bonus Quest Avalable
  • Fair Hill NRMA - 73 miles from me - Elkton, MD - Family Frolic in the Forest - Self-guided Quest
  • Susquehanna State Park - 54 miles from me - Havre de Grace, MD - Stepping Stones Through the Past - Not available on June 21st

Alone in the Middle East! :)
  • Tuckahoe State Park - 59 miles from me - Queen Anne, MD - The Great Tuckahoe Canoe Clue Pursuit - Canoe Quest - Camping

Eastern Shore Maryland (on the peninsula part)

Eastern Maryland (mainland part)

We have looked over the list, and checked out calendar for the next week, and opening weekend, Memorial Day weekend, we should be able to cross off two quests.  Including one with our friends on Monday morning... YAY!

Happy Hiking!!