I had heard that your eyesight changes in your forties...
I have never needed glasses before but I began noticing that the words in my Bible seemed "fuzzy" in the mornings. I began noticing it a couple of months ago.
It took me a while to realize that maybe I needed some reading glasses.
The other moment of truth set in when I was looking through photo albums for one of the kid's school projects. I found some of our wedding pictures and realized that I am older now than my parents were when I got married. And I thought they were old when I got married! Ha!
I am not complaining though. While I don't really like seeing those wrinkles around my eyes(!!!), I would NEVER choose to to back to younger years. I do appreciate the perspective that extra years bring...
Like my one friend's daughter told her after seeing younger pictures of her
(and styles she found embarrassing), "You're not getting older, Mom, you're getting better!"
Over the years Josh has caught quite a few wild animals in our back yard. He has captured a baby bird, a baby squirrel, a huge toad and now he can add a baby bunny to this list.
Today, while he was mowing the lawn, he saw this little baby bunny you see pictured above. He brought it in the house to show me!!! (as if we haven't had enough wildlife in the house! If the last phrase confuses you, you can read my earlier posts about our squirrel adventures.)
No, we are not keeping him. Even though Jonathan was pleading with me and giving me the all-too-familiar lines like, "I will feed him and take care of him..."
Josh let him loose to hop back to his bunny family.
It is our first visit to Hampton pool for this season. The oldest three are at Kennywood so I brought Caleb and Jonathan to the pool to get some sun and a little of their energy out (hopefully).
I began a good book today called "Letters from a Skeptic: a son wrestles with his father's questions about Christianity". The book is really a series of letters between a father and son that spans several years.
I wasn't sure it would be a good "pool book"... When Jeff suggested it I thought of might be too serious.
But actually, it is very engaging and each letter is short and to the point.
If you have someone in your life who is wrestling with Christianity, this book would be a great tool!
This morning Alissa woke up to an animal running across her head. At first she thought it was the family cat, Skipper. But then she saw "the beady eyes" of this red squirrel still at the end of her bed!
To be honest, I thought at first that she had just had a nightmare. But when Jeff and I went up to her room, we could hear the squirrel moving around under her bed.
I wish we had thought to video tape the whole episode of trying to catch this thing. It must have been quite amusing as I moved the bed to chase the squirrel over to where Jeff had a shoe box... Jeff trapped him in the cardboard shoebox and then we covered him with the Rubbermaid plastic box (above pic).
Jeff will release him somewhere far away.
After church today, we have to find how this squirrel found its way in our house and seal that hole!!!
For a couple of weeks I kept telling Jeff that we needed to get an
arborist to come and trim a large branch from our ash tree. I thought
I heard it scraping on our roof near my daughter's bedroom. But on
Tuesday I realized it wasn't the tree, but it was a noise from inside
the house...(Scratching, gnawing and squeaky kinds of sounds).
called the wildlife control services technician, who came and after
talking with him about the "symptoms", he informed us that squirrels
were the most likely culprits. He set four traps on the roof.
outside talking with the tech, Jeff & I realized that we smelled
gas. And when the gas company came to check it out, they confirmed our
suspicion of a gas leak and promptly shut off the gas to our home!
So yesterday was a parade of technicians. My plumber came and dug up the yard to replace the gas line. An arborist
came to give me an estimate on removing an arborvitae right by the
house and some large branches from the ash tree where the squirrels
were gaining easy access to our attic. And I spoke with the wildlife guy, Jeff (yes,
now we are on a first name basis), to let him know we needed "Plan B"
as there were no squirrels in the traps. (BTW-If you are an animal
lover, you will be pleased to know that Jeff will not kill them but
"relocate" them further north. If you live north of me, well, be on
the look-out for some potential house-loving squirrels guests!)
while the money I am now spending on squirrel-related costs is not
exactly where I would have chosen to spend money, I can't be too mad at
these little furry guys... It is because of them that I realized we
had a gas leak. We don't normally hang out much on that side of the
house and I might not have realized the problem for a while.
So the moral of this story--even a pest can be a blessing!
17 years ago, on Mother's Day, 1992, God brought Alissa Marie Leake into our lives. I tell her all the time that she was the best Mother's Day present I ever got!
It is hard to believe that Alissa will be 17!!!
When we found out that we were expecting our second child and made the announcement to our church, I was a little embarrassed. Our first child, David, was only 6 months old. I got so much advice in our church foyer over the next few weeks on different methods of contraception... (yes! I could feel myself turning red. Especially as the one little old lady who had a hearing problem was going into great detail in a very loud voice!!! )
It is true that Alissa was a "surprise" to us. I had thought that 2 1/2 to 3 years would be a nice amount of time between children. But, as the Scriptures tell us, God's ways ARE higher than ours! And while the first years were crazy busy and I didn't sleep a whole night through, I am so glad that God designed our family like He did!!! Who knows if we would have had our little girl...? Three years days after David turned three (and Alissa was only 21 months), Joshua was born. (We did wait a little longer on the next two 4 years and then another 2 years).
So Alissa will turn 17 on Mother's Day this year. (Another fact ya might wanna know...Jeff will turn 45 on Father's Day. He was born on Father's Day in June 1964.)
Having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Being in a country where most have never even heard of Jesus makes you realize once again how blessed we are to hear about Jesus from an early age and have the opportunity to know Him!
I am so grateful for my wonderful husband!!! He was so gracious to take on the additional responsibilities of the kids and household to allow me to go on this missions trip.
Having a cell phone so that I could talk with Jeff at least once a day while I was away.
So happy to be home with my children. I can't stop kissing and hugging them, which doesn't always go over well with the guys but it doesn't stop me. :)
A bed with a mattress! Thai mattresses have one part to the mattress and it is very hard. Feels like you are only sleeping on the box spring part of a mattress. (I am not complaining here--just want to explain why I am so happy to be back in my own cushion-y bed!!!)
"Western toilets" vs. what seems to be a porcelain hole in the ground... nuff said!
I am so happy to be home with my church family, too! Yesterday in church I hugged as many people as I could. Just felt so happy to be with you again!
Even the drive home from the airport was great. Pittsburgh is beautiful in the spring. I was admiring the rollling hills and budding trees. I am so happy to be back in the 'Burgh!
On Saturday I spoke at the Pastor's Conference here in Khon Kaen. The women next to me are Saranya and her adopted daughter, Fresh.
Saranya was my interpreter for this meeting and she also interpreted for Johannes Amritzer for the fetival meetings. She is Thai but spent more than 20 years in Great Britain so her English is great.
Her life story is intense. 12 years ago she was raped and conceived a son. She is raising this son and adopting other young women who have been sexually abused and is training them in the ways of the Lord and training them as evangelists. This very child she had from a such a terrible circumstance was one of the interpreters who went out with us on our outreaches, preaching the Gospel!!!
Fresh was gang raped by men in her village. The experience was so traumatic it left her mute. Saranya brought her into her own home, prayed for her healing both physically and emotionally. And then she gave her a new name to symbolize a new beginning. Thus the name "Fresh"!
Saranya has planted a church on one of the southern islands of Thailand. She and her children have been in the process of not only starting the church themselves but also are building it by hand. They mix the cement by hand and have poured the floor. They cut the bamboo by hand and have been constructing the building...
God has given Saranya favor with the local police. Southern Thailand is visited by many, many tourists every year especially from Europe but people from around the world come to the beautiful,l white sandy beaches. When the police need someone to interpret for these foreigners, they call for Saranya. So she has won many of the police force to God.
Sarany and her family also run a small bakery and sell breads and pastries to the tourists. That is how she supports her family and her new church.
This woman is a woman of faith and determination. She has alowed God to take very difficult situations and turn them around for His glory!