What I do when Rosie sleeps...

This past week I had a little fun while Rosie was napping....

I've been hinting for so long to my husband that I want a kindle (It's so much easier to read while nursing). My most recent hint was my "kindle fund" jar. To my surprise, I found some twenty dollar bills in it the other day from my sweet husband! (And I just had to put a picture of Rosie napping in there.)

Thanks to Pinterest I've discovered new ways of crocheting. I hand-crocheted this from an old shower curtain we never used.     Thought it'd be a good accent on our wooden chair in the living room. Gotta love that bulky look!

All I did was 

1. Cut it into one long continuous strip. 
2. Roll it up like you would a ball of yarn.
3. Made my first hoop.
4. Went around in circles till I finished it.

I actually thought it would be bigger. I can't imagine how much fabric it'd take to make a bulky rug! But maybe with an old fleece blanket or something....another time, another time.

I did the same thing here with an old summer dress. But since it wasn't nearly as much fabric I went for something smaller-cup holders!

All things family...

The ones that I found this week seem to go mostly for the ladies. But I'm pretty sure thats who read this blog the most-at least whom comment the most. My FAVORITE this week was "Motherhood is Application". I really enjoy the way she writes and how she applies the gospel so clearly. I hope you will too. I noticed that she (Rachel Jankovic) has also written for the Desiring God Blog on occasion and through them I discovered another gem she writes for called Femina. Anyways, hope my finds this week are encouraging in some way...Woot! It's Friday!

Keeping Home Priorities in View- "...with great gratitude to God, I testify that my parents were not hypocrites. That is the worst possible heritage to leave with children: high spiritual pretensions and low performance. My parents were the opposite: few pretensions, and disciplined performance."

On Misreading Daughters- A post on the tender hearts of little daughters.

Ladies, Don't Compartmentalize God- Having a worshipful attitude amidst the messy, busy life.

Motherhood is Application- “The days of a busy mother are made up of millions of transformations.
 Dirty children become clean, the hungry child fed, the tired child 
sleeping. Almost every task a mother performs in the course of a normal 
day could be considered a transformation. Disorder to order, dirty 
clothes to clean, unhappy children to peaceful, empty fridge to full…”


Sharing Biblical Concepts with Children

I mentioned in my last post that I'm reading Instructing a Child's Heart by Tedd & Margie Tripp. I just finished reading Chapter 4 "Three Principles for Communicating Formative Instruction" and thought I'd post a couple of helpful quotes and then some bullet points:

"We give our children big truths they will grow into rather than light explanations they will grow out of."

"Children grow in their perception of the gospel as they move from a naive, tactile, and sensory grasp of the world to a more abstract ability to interact with concepts. This is a process...We need to teach these spiritual concepts in gentle, compelling ways."

Don't Mix Imaginary Stories with True Bible Stories
- Illustrate spiritual concepts for children by other means than popular entertainment characters.
Sidenote: This reminds me of the Santa Clause in his red and white outfit bowing to baby Jesus in a manger at Christmastime-just a little confusing for little ones ;)

Don't Trivialize the Gospel to be "Relevant"
- When we "bring the Bible down to their level," children quickly outgrow their love and wonder at biblical narratives. Children will grow into their understanding as they realize that God's Word is different from all other literature. It is truth. It is life.

Help Young Children Relate to Bible Stories in Tactile and Physical Ways
-Giving real examples of sizes, lengths and heights from stories (i.e. Spear from David and Goliath, weight of Goliath's armor-so they could imagine themselves in David's sandals)
-Putting yourself in similar situations as people from the OT (i.e. Setting out on a trek like Abraham and Sarah saying that "We will never return. I don't know where we are going or what will happen but God will give guidance and provision.")

*examples taken from book


The Bible As Our Family Album?

Have you ever thought about Abraham of the bible being related to you or Ruth? I mean ever REALLY thought about it. I kind of knew it but it didn't mean as much to me as say being related to my Grandma Mary that I have real memories with. But reading books like Adopted for Life by Russell Moore and now thinking about Scripture as Our Personal History-a section in Instructing a Child's Heart by Tedd & Margie Tripp...I'm starting to see it, love it and cherish it...

Russell Moore originally got me thinking when he was talking about how he was counseled NOT to change the name of the boys he was going to adopt because it'd give them identity issues and how he was counseled to be sure to give them their Russian History. He had a different idea (I think more biblical) he was going to change their names and give them the Moore family history-because that's what they were becoming-and he went on to say that not only were they going to hear the Moore family history but also the stories of the Bible-that of course he hoped he'd claim as their own. I love that.

Personally, I know the stories of my auntie Mags pulling out my uncle Henry's hair and how my great grandpa served chorizo and eggs to movie stars in L.A. I love knowing how my Grandpa Joe sold huaraches with his mom on Olvera St in L.A. but since Jesus saved and adopted me into HIS family I have another family history. A history that tells of a Creator and the sinful people he used to point to their need for a Savior, and how the long awaited Savior actually came to save the sinful people and make a way for them to be with the Father-my Father :) I love that. Isn't it sweet?!

Well let me leave you with some quotes from the book I'm currently reading on the same topic:

"God has revealed himself to us in the Scriptures, telling us who we are and why we were created. Scripture is our history. Creation, Fall, and Redemption are the context for understanding life. Our children cannot understand why they are in this world, how sin has affected them, and how redemption restores what sin has destroyed, apart from their spiritual history."

"Scripture is history that tells us about ourselves."

"Scripture is not only about God's people of old-it's about us and our children. The Bible is our family album."


The Infinite & The Finite

This weekend was filled with snotty tissue, coughing (or should I say hacking?), the sound of a humidifier, and lots of naps on the couch. No, I didn't catch the flu (Praise God! Because it's going around my work) but it was still no fun when my coughs woke Rosie up or I couldn't take a full nap b/c of uncontrollable coughing and wheezing....but me being sick is a good reminder of my humanness. Valley of Vision- The Infinite & The Finite brought it to my attention:

 May I rejoice that while men die, the Lord lives, 
that, while all creatures are broken reeds, 
empty cisterns, 
fading flowers,
withering grass, 
HE is the Rock of Ages, the Fountain 
of living waters.

God is so good to remind me and thus renew my spirit when I am not feeling good at all. It reminds me of that scene from The Passion of the Christ when he says to his mother "I make all things new." Thank you God that I am just me and YOU are YOU.

Here is the except from the movie.


All things family...

Here is my round up of posts concerning families. There were some good ones this week. Hope you find some helpful or at least interesting.

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made “And indeed we found that she had an ectopic (tubal) pregnancy. Thankfully, the tube had not ruptured so she did not bleed to death. We had to excise the tube where the baby was growing (leaving the other tube for future pregnancies). What we found inside that tube is pictured below. A dead baby at about 10 weeks of age.”

The Lorax: Branching Out - The political side to The Lorax.

Understanding Complementarianism- Don't know what that is? Well Justin Taylor put a really helpful list of websites, audio and articles on this topic to help us learn more if you don't already know.  Be sure to also check out his follow up post on decision making for complementarian couples

The Fear of Baptizing Children. Ever wonder about the right age for a child's baptism to take place. Well you will find this article helpful. He did a follow up post here .

How an Affair Begins a quick post on how listening to another person's spouse can be dangerous.

Motherhood is a calling “Everywhere you go, people want to talk about your children. Why you shouldn't have had them, how you could have prevented them, and why they would never do what you have done. They want to make sure you know that you won't be smiling anymore when they are teenagers. All this at the grocery store, in line, while your children listen.”

Brothers, love your wife more than seminary "Deeply dwell on the Gospel. Your affection for your wife can only go as deep as your affection for the person and work of Christ. Because marriage is a picture of how Christ has loved His church, if your heart has grown cold toward the cross, you can be sure it has grown cold toward your marriage. Thus, do everything possible to keep your heart soft toward Jesus."

Fearfully and Wonderfully Drawn “Diversity within my family and diversity within faith-filled communities is necessary for the displaying and the building up of the Body. And, it is inside the safe and comfortable boundaries of family that my children are free to explore and discover God’s hand on them.”


New Look

About every year I get tired of my blog looking the same- so I change it up a bit. So you may notice changes here and there...if the font is too small or hard to read let me know.


Talking to your kids about sex

If you have never visited CCEF.org I highly recommend it! They have wonderful counseling resources and blogs/articles on a variety of topics from mental disorders to family relations. Here are a couple of videos by Julie Lowe on Talking to your children about sex.


All things family...

Should I Divorce if I Am Miserable?-Dr. Moore answers the moral dilemma of a reader.

16 y/o Augustine and the Enjoyment of Wanton Sin- Augustine recollects an event and thinks about the secrecy of sin.

8 Ways to protect your child from sexual abuse- I love the first one and think it's key. "Every part of your body is good and some parts are private"

Be a Real Husband and Dad- "Real husbanding and fathering never gets put on hold for any season, or for any degree program — no matter how hyped we are about our little pastoral callings. Way too much is at stake with our families right now to just go through the motions while we prepare ourselves for some future ministry. In Jesus we become the real husbands and dads we're called to be now, in seminary, for the good of his church tomorrow."


Talk: It gives LIFE or DEATH

I just picked up The Power of Words and the Wonder of God. (I believe it's a book that came out of a Desiring God Conference). The first chapter I'm reading is by one of my favorite authors Paul David Tripp. I could probably quote his whole chapter but I'll just leave you with a few:

"The book of Proverbs is, in ways, a treatise on talk. I would summarize it this way: words give life; words bring death-you choose. What does this mean? It means you have never spoken a neutral word in your life. Yours words have direction to them. If your words are moving in the life direction, they will be words of encouragement, hope, love, peace, unity, instruction, wisdom, and correction. But if your words are moving in a death direction, they will be words of anger, malice, slander, jealousy, gossip, division, contempt, racism, violence, judgement, and condemnation. Your words have direction to them. When you hear the word talk you ought to hear something that is high and holy and significant and important. May God help us to never look at talk as something that doesn't matter." (p24)

"...it is only when I love God above all else that I will love my neighbor as myself. It's only when God is the rightful place in my life that I will treat you with the love that I have received from him. Brothers and sisters, hear this: you don't fix the language problems, communication problems, and word problems horizontally; you fix them vertically." (p37)

"Word problems are heart problems." (p30)

(embolden & underline are my emphasis)


Post Pregnancy Pants

I don’t exactly fit my pre-pregnancy pants…and the ones that I do fit-they aren’t without that cute little muffin top-which means my tops are limited b/c that’s just not something that I want to accentuate.  Honestly, getting ready for church is one of the most frustrating times with that muffin top…it’s so hot in our house at that time of the day and most of the time I started getting ready too late. So it’s typical for me to feel hot, rushed and of course LARGE!

I have to say it’s been a grace of God that I have a friend who gave birth 6 weeks after me-so we feel gross together and I think it gives us a sense of normalcy-but what is it about not fitting into your pants that just really makes something go off inside of you?! It’s H-A-R-D! Post pregnancy body is not fun.

As I’ve talked with her it’s been so revealing. And I can see through my tears and frustration before church that I value so much of the way I look above more things than I’d like to admit. And as my friend asked…Is this something new? Or has it always been there? This vanity of mine- I can’t get away from it. Lord, help me! I think it’s always been there, but it’s post-pregnancy times like this that show me how deep it goes. And it goes deep my friend. Very deep.

So as I was reading from 1 Peter 1: 24, 25 last week I found myself relating to a verse that I thought I’d cling to more when I was maybe 60 years-old or so. Here is the verse:

All flesh is like grass, all it’s glory like the flower of grass.
The grass withers, and the flower falls,
But the word of the Lord remains forever.
And the word is the good news that was preached to you.

(60 years is not when your body really starts to wither…Haha apparently it’s 25.)

 So, Peter, what you are telling me is that my flesh is withering? Okay. For real I get it because when I grasp at it, it slips through my fingers. Note to self: Heather, it’s only down hill from here. Don’t grasp at it like it will last forever and bring you all your happiness, there’s only One that will do that.

Only the Word of the Lord remains forever. And what is the Word? The Good News that was preached to you! Oh man, Lord, help me to remember it and love it! 


Little Dublin girl tells the story of St. Patrick

 If you are looking for something to show your children about St. Patrick this year here are a couple of videos we showed the preschoolers today. The first one is super cute but may be hard for kids to understand b/c of the heavy accent. I love it b/c the story is being retold by a little girl from Dublin in the 1960's. I wish I had the transcripts of everything she's saying. Here is the back ground on it from YouTube:

"This series, including the original Oscar-nominated short, from Brown Bag Films is based upon the 1960s recordings of young children telling Bible stories in a classroom to their schoolteacher. When a film crew arrives at an inner city Dublin National School to record the children, the result is a warm, funny and spontaneous animated documentary, featuring young children telling the story of John the Baptist, The birth of Jesus, the Crucifixion, Saint Patrick and others...."


All things family...

Tell your children what Hitler did- From Desiring God Blog John Piper briefly tells why it's important to your children the atrocities Hitler committed.

How we should think about "Self-Worth" From Desiring God Blog John Piper answers some questions surrounding "Self-Esteem"

Out of the rubble: Courageous Motherhood A story about how one mom lost two legs protecting her children from tornados and how her story reminds us of Christ's love.

What every man wishes his father told him- It's a new book. Read the review here by Tim Challies

Our Children are spring-loaded for worship From Desiring God Blog- John Piper talks about an experience with grandchildren.

The Gospel or Karma: Do your kids know the difference? From the Shepherd Press Blog

Lessons from a Newly-Wed: Husband Worship Guest Post from a Newly Wed on Husband worship. See her very own blog The Nava Nest.

Is motherhood all it's cracked up to be? Guest Post from a new mom on her new experiences and how she is seeing the gospel.


Lessons from a Newly Wed: Husband Worship

Suzie Nava is a newly-wed. As a newly wed she's been going through a lot of change. She's in an entirely different culture! Though she is far, she and her husband are part of our church family, and thought I'd ask her to write about what she is learning out there in La Paz. Here is her encouraging post!

I am a beyond blessed newly-wed to the man of my dreams.     I enjoy every moment of it, even its challenging times, but have much to learn on this new journey of ours. My husband and I have temporarily moved to La Paz, Mexico, where I desperately needed to learn/practice my Spanish speaking skills, as it my major in college. However, along with this move and being married I underwent a lot of change in environment and culture simultaneously. As a result, I encountered some difficulties such as learning how and what it means to be  a wife (which it’s a process), learning to cook, adjusting to the Mexican culture and language barrier, making friendships and finding community, as well as being productive with my time. 

During this time I have been up and down in emotions, yet my husband has been so patient and tender in meeting my needs and helping me to adjust, which just radiates Jesus to me, constantly directing me to Jesus and His sanctifying grace. What an incredible role God has blessed us with in being a husband or wife to be an example to world of God’s perfect love and faithfulness to  His people and  honoring us to mirror this sweet relationship (Ephesians 5:22-33).  But at the same time I have to be careful to not make my husband my savior or idol and be sure to keep my eyes fixed  on the true Savior, Jesus, knowing that He is the only one who will never disappoint me.

And so this brings me to worship and had to ask myself, where is my worship rooted? In What Did You Expect Paul David Tripp discusses worship as “ you attach your identity, your meaning and purpose, and your inner sense of well-being to something” and further explains that we either get these things horizontally (from creation) or vertically (from our Creator and Father in Heaven).  And so this challenged me in checking whom and where I was placing my worship—on the temporary circumstances, my husband, appearance, etc—instead of focusing on the truth and sweet joy of Jesus.  Our sin, well my sin, causes me to focus on myself and make me concerned most for myself, yet we are to “no longer live for [ourselves], but for him who died for [us] and [rose] again” (2 Corinthians 5:14-15). Thankfully  God’s grace brings myself to an end in living for the flesh, my  selfishness, and into an identity in Christ, making my meaning and purpose to rest in Him. And through this truth, daily I am able to rest in Christ’s love and learn to love my husband, adjust to change, and make every opportunity a chance to reflect His love to others.

Through the past months I have learned many things like how to be a better wife (and taking joy in every part—even cleaning) and creating a strong deep foundation for our marriage with Jesus being the center. I have come to be so grateful for what I have, taking the littlest things for granted like hot water and embracing a much more simple life as do the citizens here in La Paz do. Or being vulnerable in making friendships and even speaking Spanish when I am out and about, instead of always relying on my husband : ) But thankful to say that I am close to being fluent—it’s just a matter of stepping outside my comfort zone. And of course learning to trust in the Lord always (2 Corinthians 3:14). Yet, like I mentioned above it is still indeed a process, and I am learning to pick up my cross daily. Many blessings!


Need of Grace

Loving me some puritans prayers right now :) This one in particular was especially sweet. Do you ever feel so sinful, so cold, and unable to muster up any affections to the One who saved you from death? This prayer is so real and I love it. Sometimes we feel may that way-maybe for just a day- or maybe for months. May God warm our hearts to his love. May we have the faith to believe in His goodness to us wicked sinners....pray along with me...

O Lord,
Thou knowest my great unfitness for service
my present deadness,
my inability to do anything for thy glory,
my distressing coldness of heart.
I am weak, ignorant, unprofitable,
and loathe and abhor myself.
I am at a loss to know what thou wouldest have me do,
for I feel amazingly deserted by thee,
and sense thy presence so little;
Thou makest me possess the sins of my youth,
and the dreadful sin of my nature,
so that I feel all sin,
I cannot think or act but every motion is sin.
Return again with showers of converting grace
to a poor gospel-abusing sinner.
Help my soul to breathe after holiness,
after a constant devotedness to thee,
after growth in grace more abundantly every day.
O Lord, I am lost in the pursuit of this blessedness,
And am ready to sink because I fall short of my desire;
Help me to hold out a little longer,
until the happy hour of deliverance comes,
for  I cannot lift my soul to thee
if thou of thy goodness bring me not nigh.
Help me to be diffident, watchful, tender,
lest I offend my blessed Friend
in thought and behavior;
I confide in thee and lean upon thee,
and need thee at all times to assist and lead me.
O that all my distresses and apprehensions
might prove Christ's school
to make me fit for greater service
by teaching me the great lesson of humility

-Valley of Vision, Need of Grace ( A collection of puritan prayers & devotions)