Aug 26, 2012

A Must Read. Really.

You must read a book called The Shack, by Wm. Paul Young.

It's about God, and forgiveness, and eerily enough, having faith when it's inconvenient, messy, and very, very hard.  God continues to surprise me even after I have long since accepted that there are no coincidences.  His sense of timing is impeccable as always.

I can't give away the plot, sorry, but I promise you it will blow you away.  It did me.  It also enabled me to forgive some very heavy burdens that I have been dragging around for most of my life of my own free will.  As Pink so succinctly put it, "Why do I do that?  Why do I do that?  Why do I do that?"  Stop worrying about why and just give it to God.  It doesn't really matter why, all that matters is that you stop.  And you can.  I did.  It is such a relief I can't even tell you, and after you read this book, I won't have to, you will know.

Wal Mart currently has it.  It's $10 bucks and change.  It is located with the religious books, but it has absolutely nothing to do with "religion" as we recognize it.  I am telling you where it is because while I am sure Wal Mart has some kind of system for organizing their books, it is not a system that has anything to do with order or logic.

I highly recommend it as a gift for any or, perhaps more importantly, no occasion whatsoever.

I am blogging it because the author requested it.  You can check it out further at

Aug 25, 2012

Forks in the Road and Having Faith....

With all the talk about abortion lately, I would like to ask a few questions.  Not politically correct questions, and not questions for people who are not Christians, probably.

When I was pregnant with the twins, I had the distinct and ominous feeling throughout the pregnancy that something was going to go wrong.  I often have these "feelings" where I just "know" things.  Don't get excited, the things I "know" are not winning lottery numbers or anything like that.  I took special care throughout, thinking that I could avoid whatever it was that was going to go wrong.

At some point in the pregnancy the Dr. who did the ultra sound told me that we "had" to do the test to see if either one of the babies was Down's Syndrome.  This was not because I was concerned about that.  I believed that whatever baby I was going to have was the exact right one that God had designed for me, and me alone, to have.  I still do believe that.  No, the Dr. explained, it was because he "had" to give me the choice of "terminating" the pregnancy.  There was a box he "had" to check off of a list in order not to come under suspicion by the medical powers that be, or else he might lose his license.

At 36 1/2 weeks we had scheduled an amniocentesis test to see if the twins' lungs were developed enough to schedule a C-section.  You may already know that I feel women have given up their power over their bodies and the birth process to people who have schedules they want to keep and boxes to check off lists for government agencies.  So let me just reiterate that I strongly advise people to just let their babies come when God decrees it time.  The trouble was that I had gained over 100 pounds and could not easily breathe any longer, as one or the other of the twins was constantly pushing up on the bottom of my lungs.  This is a picture of me the morning before we went for the test.
Nuff said.  lol
The amnio caused a placental abrupt ion, which is where the wall of the uterus tears away from the abdominal wall, causing both myself and the twins to bleed out.  We were all dying while I calmly reclined in a hospital bed and read a magazine.  

Through an emergency surgery, we all survived.  The twins weighed 7 lbs 3 oz and 6 lb. 4 oz., but were both born dead with half of their blood volume and collapsed veins.  It took 3 minutes for my Oldest baby and 15 minutes for my Youngest Baby to be brought back to life, due to no one being able to get a vein so that they could be given blood.  They spent 3 weeks in the NICU after that, during which time we were plunged into despair and more importantly, a test of our faith.

See, God does not ask us to trust him when it's convenient, or when the outcome is guaranteed.  He asks us to trust him.  Blind faith is hard to achieve, but not impossible.  I will never forget coming out of the anesthesia and realizing what a predicament we were all in.  The first thing I did was start to pray, and then I stopped.  I was at a brick wall, trying to decide to pray for God to save them or if that would be the best thing, not knowing what kind of lives I might be committing us all to.  Suffice it to say that my lesson, learned the hard way, as always, was to pray Thy Will Be Done and ask for the strength and grace to get through it in a way that God could be proud of.

Everything turned out all right.  Everyone lived, and I thank God for it every day, no matter how bad that day has been.

This is just a little background to ask the question that we all, at some time or another, have to ask ourselves:  Do I believe that God is really in control?  And if so, do I have enough faith to follow His will?

I have been appalled at how politicians desert their beliefs in order to shill for votes.  The discussion lately has been whether abortion should be allowed (by government agencies) in cases of rape (and whether it's "legitimate") or incest.

Do you remember the No Means No campaign that was launched in the 80's?  It was supposed to educate young men to understand that if a girl said no, even if she had spent the evening with them, gotten drunk and voluntarily come to their house or let them into her own, that they should stop everything right there.  I am not making the argument that they should go ahead a rape the girl.  I am pointing out that the girl would find herself in this situation through her own free will and actions, and that to expect any man to stop at that point is extremely unrealistic.

But let us say that the situation is not that.  Let us say that the girl was attacked getting out of her car in the parking lot of her own building and raped and finds herself pregnant.  This is terrible, no question.  It is a fork in the road for that poor woman.  The most important question that I can imagine asking in that situation is this:  Do you believe that God would allow a child to be conceived if it was not His plan?  I admit, it's a tough question, but life is full of them.

In my experience, becoming a mother is the best and most important thing that ever happens to anyone, regardless of the circumstances.  It changes you, and through you it changes everything in your world.  Do you have the faith to trust God and follow His will, or not?

Becoming a parent is painful, messy, inconvenient and endless.  Most of us would not trade it for anything in the world, regardless.

If you find yourself at this particular fork in the road, choose carefully.  There will be lots of people, especially women, urging you not to feel bad and telling you all about your "rights to your body".  They will assure you that it will be confidential.  "No one will know".  They forget about God.  God knows, and you will know, and whatever decision you make, you will have to live with the rest of your life.  Will God forgive you?  I believe He will.  Will you be able to forgive yourself?  Only you can answer that.

I would urge you to have that baby.  Whether you give it up for adoption or make sacrifices the rest of your life to raise it, I believe you will never regret it.  But you will have to make your own decision.  Choose wisely, because when you die, it is not a government agency that you will answer to.  I think you will answer to God, and I also believe that you will get to meet the soul you denied life, because that soul will have been in heaven waiting to meet you.  You will have already been forgiven.  

I know these are hard questions, but as I said before: life is full of them.  Choose wisely and try to have a little faith.  God does not bring you to anything that He will not also see you through.  Don't worry about the details.  

No matter how bad things are, God is in control.


Aug 23, 2012


It's been a while since I have had the energy to post.  It's been a while since I had the energy to do anything....OH WELL.  This sums up my life in general these days.  Funny how you find the energy when you need though, isn't it?

Times are hard, and getting harder.  We got a bonus at work.  I used it to stock up on meat and buy another gun.  Why would I buy a gun?  You might ask.  It is not just to protect the meat, if that's what you're thinking.

This summer our small little town has had a lot of theft.  Not your ordinary kind of theft that happens when no one is home.  Our thefts have happened right in our houses in the dead of night while we sleep.  Those of us who can sleep, that is.  Our thief likes to pop out screens and rummage through our bathroom cabinets and even our bedside tables.  It makes me shudder to even imagine it, but my neighborhood got hit at least 5 times.  

Have you ever seen the movie Stealing Home?  It starred Jodi Foster and Keven Cosner. In one of my favorite scenes, Kevin Cosner is an adult who has met up with his childhood friend in his hometown.  They go out and get drunk and then decide to go to his friend's childhood home and rummage around for their old baseball uniforms.  The friend's parents still live in the house he grew up in, but have for some crazy reason locked their doors.  This leads them to climb up and fall through a window that just happens to be between the beds of the friend's now-elderly parents.  The mother wakes up, sees Kevin Cosner, and instead of being alarmed that someone just broke into her house, let alone her bedroom, recognizes Kevin, pats him on the cheek and says "Oh, hello, dear.  How is your mother?"  He replies that his mother is fine and then she gives them a general direction to go find their old baseball uniforms and then goes back to sleep.

Until this year, this endearingly remarkable scene would have been pretty much exactly what you could expect to happen around here.  Until this year.

That was then.  This is now.

Without going into any more details I can say that the thief has been identified, caught twice, and let go.  You can probably imagine how happy and safe that makes us all feel.  Being from Missouri, and hence being armed, we don't let it get us down too much.  Instead we pay a lot more attention and sleep a lot less.

I might be able to tell myself that this is just a passing phase except for the fact that I have two sons still at home whom I consider "kids", but whom are as big as grown men.

Last weekend I had agreed to let one of their friends spend the night.  The boys had the not uncommon idea when walking home after dark to see is they could scare me.  I had the dogs in and all the windows open when I heard a strange knocking.  I was just looking to see what the dog's tails were knocking against when Jack growled.  Immediately after that, I heard my youngest baby say from right outside the window, "Jack!  You growled at me!!" and then realize that the knocking was not a dog's tail at all, but one of the boys walking on the porch up to the front door.  It was a good feeling to know that Jack would at least growl in a circumstance like this, as up until this point I was figuring that the only warning I would have would be the dog's tails knocking against the walls as they went to greet the thief.

We all laughed and I did not make a big deal out of it because I did not want to scare the boys.  Why put that worry into their sweet little heads if it wasn't, by whatever miracle, already there?

They spent the rest of the evening between our own house and that of a dear neighbor's, running back and forth and through a pond occasionally, playing hide and seek and running into electric fences and, most memorably, clothes-lining themselves.  They got to stay out till midnight.  It was a big night for 15 years olds, and a good one.  I just drank enough coffee to keep myself up until midnight, got the house locked up after they got home, and went to bed.

About 10 minutes later my oldest baby knocked on my bedroom door and said he had forgotten his phone charger at the other house, could he go get it?  Yes, he could, but come right home.  10 minutes after that he was home and I felt secure enough to go to sleep, for good this time.

About 1:45 am I was woken by the dogs barking.  Outside.  The dogs had been inside when I thought we had all gone to bed.  I immediately got up, opened the door to the basement, and called down to the boys.  My oldest baby gave a big sigh, as he always does when woken from a dead sleep, and blearily answered in the affirmative when I asked if everything was all right.  He replied, and I quote "we are sleeping".  I didn't investigate further because I didn't want to wake them all up.  That was my first mistake.

Have I ever told you what a good kid my oldest baby is?  I don't say it enough because it causes immense guilt about what light that puts my youngest baby in.  Something about twins makes you drive yourself insane trying to keep everything "equal".  You know it is insane but you still cannot stop.  I've learned to live with it but it is also the curse of my life.  And I do it to myself.  Anyway......

It was very suspicious that the dogs were out.  The one saving grace of my youngest baby is that he is stupid enough to always, always get caught.  I let the dogs in and went out to the front porch, where everything was quiet and peaceful.  I did not have long to wait until I saw two shadows walking down the street from the direction of the other house that the boys had spent the night playing at.  The two shadows are talking at normal volume, completely oblivious that there are most certainly several pairs of eyes and not a few gun barrels following their progress.  So oblivious are they that when they start to cut through to my own back yard my voice startles them.

My voice startled them because they had gotten caught sneaking back home, which was the biggest threat their little minds could imagine.

In their youth, and therefore incredible stupidity, they had taken the opportunity to go with my oldest baby to get the forgotten charger, and then stayed for awhile, getting my oldest baby to believe that they would not be long, and  thinking I was asleep and would never know the difference.  Last year I probably wouldn't have. 

But that was then

Then, they could have wandered the neighborhood they have grown up in at any hour of the night with the only consequence being that they would have "gotten caught" and been grounded.  That is exactly the kind of childhood I wanted for them, and a big reason why I live where I do.

But this is now.

We had a small confrontation on the front porch in the dead of night where their biggest concern was simply getting caught and being grounded.  That was the worst thing they could imagine.  That changed pretty quick once we got inside the house and I said "Do you have any idea how lucky you are that I didn't pull a gun on you?"

Dead silence, big eyes.  Blink, blink, blink.

"Do you have any idea how lucky you are that someone else didn't??"

Faces going dead white due to the blood draining away into the bottoms of their feet.  Know the feeling?  I daresay you do.  It was the feeling you got the first time you realized how much bigger the stakes were and how you had been sheltered from them because you were a child, and now you were not.

I have talked before about how the boys are old enough to start being grown up, but now it is vital that they get it through their heads and that it stays there.

So, between the hours of 2 and 3am last weekend, they received a long lecture from an exhausted, weeping, somewhat hysterical woman about how "we" (we being the adults in the neighborhood, the town, and America in general) were "hyper-alert" (scared, a little bit crazy, and with itchy trigger fingers, especially in the MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT) and how they needed to "think" (assume the worst and take the necessary precautions) before they acted on some hare-brained teenage scheme (which constitutes most of what passes for their lives at this point).  I am sorry that they don't get to act on their crazy, hare-brained schemes.  What is being a teenager without crazy, hare-brained schemes????  But it is just too dangerous, and could have consequences that are irreversible, not to mention deadly.  Let's face it:  the chances of them being shot dead are not great.  However, the chances of them being shot are very good.  Very good indeed.

I think I got through to them, but then I always think that.  It's a fine line, parenting teenagers, between trying to protect them and trying to scare the holy living sh*t out of them.  For their own good, of course, not to mention yours.  They professed how sorry they were, admitted how stupid it was, assured me that it would not happen again, and we all went to bed.  For real this time.

I grew up in a town small enough that we did not have police.  Nor did we need them.  We had parents.  There was nothing we did that they did not find out, and yes, everyone had a gun.  Perhaps because of this, few ever needed to be drawn.

Maybe you believe that the police can protect you.  If so, I can only say God bless your little heart.  I don't want to burst your bubble, but I also don't want to have to defend you, too, when your dreams don't work out the way you thought.  I have enough on my plate as it is and it's nothing I can't handle, usually.  But every once in a while.......well, there is just a peace that comes with knowing that you can defend yourself if you have to.

And if you happen to be in Brookfield Missouri and get a hare-brained idea?  You should think twice.  We have police, but we do not necessarily feel the need to call and bother them for every little thing.  When things go bad, they seem to go bad real fast.  Have you noticed?

I wish I could say this was a phase.  God willing it is.  Just remember: better safe than sorry and act accordingly.  I could have made this a funny post but the fact is that this isn't funny, and I don't see any end in sight.  I hope that we will laugh about it for years to come.  Good years, where people are not getting robbed or worse.  I guess all we can do is hope and be ready to defend ourselves if necessary.

Until then, do not be surprised in insomno-maniacs are seen in your own town.

Aug 3, 2012

We did it!

It took most of a day that was soooooo humid, but we did it.  We have done it.  We now have an electric fence inside the chain link and the dogs are free to reign over the domain of our backyard once again.

We got some rain yesterday morning, which was an unexpected blessing.  I enjoyed it very much, sitting on my porch and drinking coffee. 

Following that was a trip to buy fencing supplies, long discussions of "options", the purchase of "some" supplies, other trips to other places for other discussions of "options" with coffee drinking farmers, and eventually the work was in progress.

I had no idea you could not just run down town and buy a 6 or 12 volt battery anymore.  Who knew?  Luckily, I had a practically brand new and hardly used battery in the lawn mower that hasn't run for at least 3 years.  A few hours on the trickle charger and we were in business.

The dogs got it within 1 zap each.  They are very smart that way.  The real problem is us.  After we had made the big beautiful yard safe for them, the boys were compelled to let them in last night "because they were lonely".  They went out for about 2 hours this morning and then I let them in "because it's so hot outside".  Now they are laying at my feet contentedly listening to my type.  We are very good people.  We love our dogs.  Self discipline is obviously the burden we are destined to overcome in this life.  So be it.  Eventually the boys are going back to school and I will go to work and the dogs will be in the backyard staying away from the fence, and everything will be as it should.  That is my plan, anyway.

After the rain it got so humid, as we were setting posts and running the wire, that sweat was actually beading up and running down my scalp.  Also, you may already know that the drought hasn't slowed down the mosquito's at all, and they had a feast on all of us.

This did not leave me in very good shape to go register the boys for school, but I just tried not to touch my hair, sprayed on some perfume we sallied forth.

Lord help me, we sallied forth in order to pay the school to be registered for such classes as "minority studies".  Yep.  You read that correctly.  I am not making it up.  If I hadn't already been sweat soaked and eaten up by mosquito's I probably would have had the energy to make a big deal of this.  I have very little energy left to throw at ignorant, gigantic Federal institutions, which is what public school has become, and this is probably good, since I have to live in this town.  Ok.  I don't "have" to live in this town, but it would be a lot of energy to move and the public schools will be the same no matter where I live.   But I have to tell you, I have just about had it.  If I could find someone to do it, my children would be home schooled, but this probably isn't news.  As it is, the kids show up and get passed without learning much of anything useful and the parents pretend to be happy and proud that they are doing so well.  We just work on the real lessons at home, in the time we have between supper and bedtime, if you are old-fashioned enough to work for a living.  It's the path of least resistance, I know, but I can only do so much.  

Do not doubt that we had a quite lively discussion of this in the convenience store where we ran into other guinea pigs students after registration.  The result was that there are several kids going to school that have been told that since they are white, male, and expect to work for a living, they are the new minority.   

Wonder how the teacher's gonna like them apples?  Poor thing.  I have no evidence that this is anything the actual teacher believes in, you understand.  I'm about 99.9% sure it's just part of the "curriculum" and there is a "rule" that it must (MUST I SAY!!) be checked off of a "list".  If the "list" isn't "checked off", there will be a "bad report", and the poor teacher's salary might "be affected".  

How do you think they get people to do this anyway?  It's not just through brainwashing.  You have to dangle some kind of good carrot to get people to go against everything their parent's tried to instill in them.  It is extremely helpful if you surround the subject with other's in the same boat.  They will call this a "team".  You don't think anybody would be stupid enough to advance this agenda without backup, do you?  Would you?  Of course not!  Most people do have a brain which often works despite their trying to suppress their own natural instincts.   Oh, and foster a strong belief that it's "the right thing to do".   This is supposed to silence logical and reasonable people with false guilt.  It is about 49% effective, too, and that is nobody's fault but our own.  

Apparently you need to start kid's attitudes of entitlement and victimization at least by the time they are freshman in high school.  Any later and it might not take, and then where would that leave the government?  

NOWHERE!  That's where!  


Which is one thing I would like to see before I die and I guess if that means having a war with my own children to supplant the insane, morally questionable (at best) and corrupt (at worst) attitudes that the school system seems to be intent on endowing them with, well, what can I say.? It appears to be my destiny.  We all have one and I'm not dead yet.  If you ever have cause to question what your "destiny" is, look around.  I'm pretty sure it's right in front of you.  Do it.  Then do what comes next.  This keeps the world spinning and we all have to do our part.

It's like a dream to me, getting the government out of our lives.  Remember another man who had another dream?  I thought we were there in the 80's, and I still think we were there, but not now.  Oh, no, now everyone is supposed to feel "bad" for anything "different" and "guilty" for things we never once did or even thought about doing.  

Would you just GET REAL already?  

If I am not mistaken, in America everyone has equal rights and we are all heavily encouraged to become adults and become self sustaining.  Nobody really cares or even thinks about what color you are and trust me, there are a whole lot of people who consider your sex life absolutely private and none of their business.  They wish you would consider it private and none of their business too!  Everybody has problems of their own and whining never helped anybody do anything.  

Whining=bad.  This should not have to be spelled out in a world of adults.  

But where are the adults? We have parents now who spend their time gaming and their money on "movies" that are cartoons.  Cartoons used to be for kids.  When my generation grew up, we waited to be 18, you know why?  So we could be independent!  The fact that this also meant we had a couple of milk crates for chairs did NOTHING to deter us.  In fact, it just made us swallow the fact that things cost money and our resolve to make more of it so we could buy us some stuff!  Now we have 18 year olds who play games most of the time living in their parent's basement and are not even expected to have a job, hence insurance, until they are 26????  Am I the ONLY ONE who is trying to raise adults????  I can't be!  It can't be true!!  I do not want to leave you with the impression that I think people below the age of 26 actually "need" insurance, either, because when I was that age I opted not to pay for it.  Why?  Because I was young and healthy and I wanted that money to buy beer or something instead.  But that was before the world moved on and started treating people like parasites, not to mention a time when people fought against being parasites.   Are those days gone?  Not if I have anything to do with it.

It looks to be a very interesting year.  Stay tuned.