Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Birthday Party for Jesus

I can't really believe it's Christmas time already!  Wasn't it just yesterday that I was pregnant? And now I have a baby 2 months shy of a year.  Guess that's what sleep deprivation does to a person!  Whole chunks of time pass without you realizing it! 

Well, with Christmas time comes my now annual Birthday Party for Jesus.  Now that my friends Malinda and Angela help me it has become a fun event to plan.  It totally took the stress out by asking them to help and I'm so glad that they do!  Not only because it helps me, but because they are so much more creative than I'll ever be!

This year we decided to do an all girls party of close friends/relatives and neighbors.  The worst thing about birthday parties, I'm coming to find out, is who to invite.  We've had many a tear in our house over not being invited to birthday parties, so as a mother I have a hard time finding a cut off point! But, I guess that's just part of life...

This year we went with a manager theme. 

Our invitation was an ornament to color with information about the party printed on the back.

We started with a craft.

We glued craft sticks around a felt piece for the manger.  I found some nice manger scene figures at Hobby Lobby and put felt backing on them.  The idea was to have a craft they could play with over and over like a flannel graph.

I got some manger scene stickers for the younger ones.

Angela then had an interactive story for the kids.  If you are familiar with resurrection eggs for Easter, this was along those lines.  The kids went on a scavenger hunt to find little presents to open that coincided with the Christmas story.  Very fun!

Every child brought a gift for Children's Mercy hospital and we worked that into the story time.  They got to show what they brought to give away and everyone was very happy and excited to place their gift in the box for others to enjoy. 

Next we did the cake.

Malinda free-handed this cake of her own creation.  I loved how it turned out!

I just have to say that it's really nice to sing Happy Birthday to Jesus and have Him be the focus of the party.
It's so refreshing to see kids having so much fun at a party that's not thrown in their honor!

We finished the night playing dress up and acting out the Christmas Story.  I think this was the kids' favorite part of the night.  They got to take turns acting out different parts.

We had Kings

And donkeys!
Joseph leading Mary and the donkey to Bethlehem


A donkey taking a break

It was great night to take time to focus on the Lord and remember the reason we celebrate Christmas.

 Merry Christmas Everyone!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Keeping in Step

So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature.  They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want.
Galatians 5:16-17

Whenever I read Paul's words here I come away thinking...boy are these verses ever true.  I can literally feel a war going on in my soul probably every day.  My sinful nature is very alive and well. Here's a fraction of what goes through my mind on a daily basis...

I'm going to tell her she's being a jerk.

Do it.

If my child disobeys me one more time I'm going to lose it on her.

About time.

I'm going to call someone and tell them this juicy piece of news!

Oh, that someone will love to hear it.

I'm way too busy to have them over.

Yes, you are so busy.

Ugh, I need to remind/nag my husband to fix that.

Maybe if you keep doing it he'll remember!

The bummer part is, I find myself listening to this sinful side of me far to much. Sometimes I get so far into it I literally don't know the truth from the lie.  When I can feel this war going on, I often find myself saying out loud, "Get thee behind me Satan!", so I can figure out what the Lord really wants of me in a certain situation.

I guess the good news is that I definitely have the POWER to overcome it.  And I know the more I do overcome it the softer that sinful voice will become. It just feels as though it's center stage right now.

But hey, I'm blaming it on the baby!  I totally fell out of my routine of daily reading God's word after I had her.

Oh wait, blaming?  Couldn't possibly be my sinful nature...

Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
Galatians 5:25, 26

Monday, October 29, 2012

Magical for Sure

If you haven't been to Disney before, let me just tell you, it really is a magical place.  Their big slogan is "If you can dream it, you can do it,"  and the whole time I was there I was thinking..."I'm not even sure I could dream this!"

Eric's parents took us all (again) and what an amazing gift it was!  We started out on a 3 night Disney cruise (which was the highlight for me) and then went to the parks for a couple days.

Not only does Disney take care of the kids, but they also make sure the parents are having a good time.  It's really the perfect vacation.

On the cruise they had a glorified "child care" section where my kids begged to go to non-stop....ummm....okay, sign me up.  Think character appearances, non-stop Disney games and activites, cookie baking. Oh, and it's open till 1 am.  There's also daycare for babies so parents can relax on the beach for a few hours.  Thank God for this because having an 8-month old on this kind of trip is not ideal.  Sign me up.  9-5 please. 

Oh ya and they own their own private island on the Bahamas with what?  "Child care" water park on the property so parents can play in the ocean.  Tell me this isn't magical???  The shows...unbelievable.  The food....wonderful.  The memories....priceless.  (Okay that last one was cheesy but I couldn't think of anything else.)

Here's just a few pics from our magical week...


It was so much fun that I didn't even mind the aftermath in my
living room for the next couple days...
now that's fun!

Thank you Grandma and Grandpa! 
Nothing beats meeting Rapunzel in person!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Full Rein for Four

Austyn turned 4 yesterday.  We usually talk about what kind of cake we are going to do for birthdays year round.  But, when the moment finally arrives the girls have a hard time committing.  Most generally it's a princess of some sort, but this year Austyn wasn't feeling the princess thing.  So I got to thinking about what she really loves in life and I kept coming back to candy and sweets.  She is a candyholic for sure.  She'd have diabetes already if I gave her full rein. But, full rein on her birthday?  Definitely. I took to the Internet and found the perfect cake for her candy addiction. 

Super fun and super easy for the amateur caker like me!


She already says she want the same cake next year, so I guess that means it was a hit!

Happy Birthday to my
not-so-little-anymore girl!
I love ya Aussie!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Fourth Child

Over a fabulous piece of my mother-in-law's peach pie with a side of ice cream, my husband and I had a great conversation (at least from my perspective).

He began by saying:

So, do you care if I go to that conference?

I guess you can go.

(Laughing).  Do you ever feel like I'm your 4th child?

THANK YOU SO MUCH for saying that!  You don't know how liberated I feel right now.  I feel wonderful, free, understood!

No, no, no. What I meant to say was, do you ever feel like you treat me like I'm your 4th child?

(ignoring him)...I've been waiting for you to say that for hmmmm...11 years now...what made you finally come to this realization??

Tam, seriously, you're annoying.

So you finally see what I have to go through, put up with, pick up after.  You have no idea how great I feel right now!

Annoyed Silence

And he gives up trying to get his point across because naturally I keep going on and on as if I didn't hear his intentional statement.


An hour later:

Oh shoot.  I left the ice cream out.  It's totally melted.  What should I do?

Just throw it away.

(We both burst into hysterical laughter.  Well, mine was hysterical, his was more of a resigned chuckle.)

Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Big Leagues

I've decided that having your child go to school is a lot like actually giving birth to your first child.  Everyone can give you advice and prepare you mentally but until it's actually here you are oblivious. Nothing quite prepares you for that first day that they're with teachers and classmates more than they are with you. 

Talk about anxiety...

Half day Kindergarten was a walk in the park, but 1st Grade?  We are in the Big Leagues now.

Who knew that girl clicks started this early?

I hope she's not participating...

And who would've thought my outgoing girl would miss me so much?

Lord, please help her have fun!

Why are sight words so dang hard to memorize?

Yes, an A and a T spell AT....AT....AT!!!!  Get it already!

Is it me, or is there only 10 minutes from the time they get home to the time they go to bed?

Sheesh, it's 8 o'clock and we haven't taken a bath, gone over sight words, or read books yet!  I'm such a failure! 

All these things and a thousand more rush through my head all day.  And if I could sum up what I'm feeling most of the time, here's a word for ya...


This is good for me though.  It's brought me to a new place, a place where all you can do is pray.  So prayer is my constant companion these days.  I think when she was home with me all day, I felt more in control so it lessened my desire to pray for her. 

It made me realize that feeling out of control is essential to letting the Lord have control.  Placing your child (or anything) in the Lord's hands?  Not an easy thing to do...especially for a control freak.

I cried even.  Called my sister in desperation.  Brooded.  Sulked.  Contemplated home school.  My last resort?  Prayer.  Then I asked a couple other people to pray.  Then things began to change....huh.

The next day...

Mom, I made a friend today!  It's a good thing you prayed!

The day after that...

My anxiety, gone.

The day after that... got it!  Now, how are we going to remember THIS?

The day after that...

I love school mom.

Ahhhhh....peace.  Peace that transcends all understanding.

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!  Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:4-7

Friday, August 24, 2012

Can It Be?

Can it be that my baby is in the 1st grade already?

Can it be that she's really old enough to lose teeth?

Can it be that I'm old enough to have a 1st grader??

Apparently so, nevertheless I'm a pretty proud momma today on this first day of school. (Not to mention...worried, a little scared, super uncertain, lonely and second guessing.)  But for Rylie's sake, at least I have a good "brave face."

Praying for you today sis!  I love you!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Celebrating Life

My nephew Graham is 1 year old today!

Hard to believe a year ago he was scheduled for open heart surgery...

Today he is a perfectly healthy and beautiful boy!

Praise the Lord for giving our family this little miracle
and being able to celebrate life today!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Summer in Pictures

Lindgren Family Camping Trip 2012


This beautiful lady below goes the extra mile
to get us all together for a camp out every year.
And every year it's a blast. 
Thank you Grandma!

Let's Play ball! 
And everything else under the sun...


Oh, the joy of being flower girls!

At Meghan Jost's wedding

A trip home

Nothing beats fried chicken at Grandma's...nothing.

Devastating Fires due to drought

These fires were about an hour west
of my home town in SD

Choring with Papa

Spending time on my beloved Missouri River
My Uncle Kevin and Aunt Shelley took us out for a beautiful boat ride.

Out to the Hills for a reunion on my husband's side.
It's been so many years since I've been to the Black Hills, I'd forgotten what a fun vacation it is!

Bear Country


And for the Summer...
An A+ for sure
Here's to hoping the school year is the same!

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