Monday, September 22, 2008

Who's Training Who?

The Prairie Kid is one month past his third birthday. Several weeks ago I finally succumbed to the idea that I needed to potty train my kid. I have never wanted to potty train a kid. I have no real desire to move him from diapers to the toilet. I was secretly hoping that he would figure this all out himself. The doctor reminded me at his 3 year check up that it was my job to teach this.

And then I realized that I had no idea what I was doing. I got out a book that had a great chapter on this and I decided to shoot for the "potty train your kid in one day" philosophy. Two hours into this was when The Prairie Daddy called and told me we needed to get cows off the mountain because of the wild fire. So, you can imagine how long the training lasted.

Then I decided to just work at it as The Prairie Kid was willing since our life is so unpredictable and busy. This has been a not-so-fun, but humorous none-the-less experience. Here are some stories for you to, again, be entertained at my expense:

I read somewhere that when potty training your child you yourself should hoot and holler and have a really good time while you're going to the bathroom. And then talk about how much fun it is and how babies shouldn't have this much fun, just big kids who go on the potty. I have played this up and added that only babies need diapers. Your child is then supposed to want to have fun and be a big kid and go potty on the potty. A few times now, when I have tried to get The Prairie Kid into undies he says "I just a baby, Mom, I need diapers. I just a baby!" Yeah, that one really worked.

Candy is supposed to entice a child to want to go to the potty on the potty. We have a new stash in the cabinet above the fridge and The Prairie Kid knows it is there. He also knows that when he goes potty in the potty he gets to pick one. Do you think he cares? Nope, but every time The Prairie Daddy or I go he tells us that we can have a candy!

The Prairie Kid is also having fun saying other things that I don't even know where he gets them. Lately he will be heard yelling "Holy Snoke!" (no, I didn't misspell smoke, that is how he says it) and "Holy Cow!" I have to admit he got the latter from me. He also continues to say "oop-a-daisy" because Grandma says "oops-a-daisy."

This morning he got to have a snack and he was walking around saying "Yummy! That good. I like that. That taste good. Yumm-eee!" I gave him a taste of sorghum as we made cookies and he said the same thing, "Yummmm-eee! That good! I like it!"

He has developed some very interesting excuses as well. He has a few that he uses in particular circumstances. See below.

When he doesn't want to eat or drink something the excuse is "it too spicy!" This included some water I offered him, "it too spicy!"

When he doesn't want to do something he says "it too scary!"

When he doesn't like something he says "I can't like it!"

There are precious things that he is saying as well. He has expressed some fear of the dark recently and I always tell him, "you don't have to be afraid. Jesus is always with you." This morning I heard him saying while he played "No be afraid. Jesus here. Jesus with you." And then he hollered to me, "Mom, no afraid, Mom. Jesus always here, Mom."

Last night he lost control of his enthusiasm and whopped me in the back. I had him sit against the wall. A minute later he came in to me and said, "Mommy, please fer-give me for hit you." Heart melter!

One day last week I was changing his diaper and he said "I very happy." And when I was upset the other day he said, "calm down, Mom, calm down." I told him through my tears that I was working on it. Later he said "Mommy happy now?"

There are many more fun things he has been saying but I cannot think of them right now. Hopefully I will come up with them soon and have enough for another post.

Long Time, No Blog Post

I can't believe it has been so long since my last post. Time is zooming by every day and I am at times wondering if my brain can hold on to any new information. Last week I definitely hit mental saturation; I was unable to find a spot to stick more info. This week should be less demanding. We had a great time with extended family in town last week and Galaxy went well. The highlight since my last post was this weekend.

A few girlfriends and I decided we wanted to go to Billings to the Beth Moore conference. We had been eagerly awaiting last Friday morning when we kissed our hubbies and babes goodbye, loaded up in my Suburban, and headed north. We had a blast. It was one of the most precious girl's times I have ever had. We laughed, teased, loved, shared, learned, cried, shopped, ate, worshiped, hugged, encouraged, prayed, and lived the whole time. I barely even slept it was so good. The conference itself was amazing but to enjoy it with these women took it to almost an indescribable level. Girls, thanks for a fantastic time. I miss you already!

The conference was a time to really soak up some good sound Biblical lessons. I took home some gold nuggets to meditate on. And the worship was awesome. I brought that home with me too. I was able to enjoy our church worship yesterday like never before.

This week should be some rest time and trying to find a "normal" routine for Galaxy prep and facilitation. I will wrap up this post because I want to do a separate one on recent stories of The Prairie Kid.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

10, 9, 8, 7....

6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, BLAST OFF!!!

The Galaxy program has officially launched. What a ride! Launch Day was good. Last details coming together. Lists, lists and more lists. Rooms to arrange, people to encourage, kids to sign up, helpers to delegate, schedules to stick to, games to run, dramas to direct...
I was pretty much ready for our whirlwind meeting before The Rush and had several people willing to do whatever I asked of them (bless their hearts). And then I took my post at the registration tables.

The Rush was scary. It wasn't scary to register kids, it was scary because I was thinking that hundreds of kids were passing by. It was such a jumble for me and seemed like hoards and hoards of them checking in. I wondered what it was like down the hall in the room where we were starting out. Was it chaos? Were the kids overtaking the leaders? Did I want to know how it really was?

Finally, when things at the registration table died down I was brave enough to wonder down to the room where Lift Off, the opening worship, was taking place. I walked in and found the room neatly organized with kids in rows on the floor learning the signs to a new song. Bliss.

And when it was time I dismissed each group to where they needed to be and accompanied the K-3rd graders down the hall where I was going to direct the instant drama. It was bliss. And then we broke them into three groups and I got them started on the games. It was bliss. I took time between game instructions and rushed to get each registered child placed in their Circle of Friends, the group they would be assigned to for the year. Accomplished.

And then the newly assigned Circles of Friends went down to their classrooms for closing discussions and journaling. I wandered down to check on the preschool and 4-5th grade programs. Everyone was right where they were supposed to be. Everything was going super! As I walked back up the hall tears filled my eyes because our Lord is so faithful; He put together a program and allowed me to be a part of it. Bliss.

Were there hundreds of kids? No, just a perfectly doable 66. It all went so well.

There are definitly a few details to iron out before next week but they are things that will just enhance the program that much more. I am excited to see what the year will bring. I am humbly and thankfully in awe of our gracious, awesome God. To Him be the glory.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Lightening Fast Season Changes

Two seasons have changed so fast I think I missed the transition! The first is the weather. The second is my time of rest quickly came to an end and moved into The Call.

Things have been so busy that I don't know quite when the weather changed or when I lost track. All I know is now that I have had time enough to think straight it seems that everything changed weeks ago and now it is my normal!

I love the rain. We don't get a lot of rain in these parts and we've been blessed with over 2 inches of rain in the last week. It has been cold too. The mountains are covered with snow. I have been in sweaters, socks, and shoes once again. The only transition that I don't like is the socks and shoes; I much prefer sandals and bare feet. But the crisp, wet air has been refreshing and cozy. I am ready for a long, hard winter if that is what is in store. And if you recall The Infestation it just might be what we're headed for (and yes, we're catching mice left and right in our traps).

Now on to The Call.

A few nights ago I was reading in my prayer journals from last year. Last fall I was praising the Lord for bringing me out of the summer season and into the fall. I was weary, frazzled and in need. I was ready for some change, rest and something different. I read prayers of hunger; I wanted more of Him. I continued to read and realized that much change and transition did take place last year. My prayer continued in wanting more, wanting to be used by Him, but knowing I would need to patiently wait.

This past spring I was aware that I had moved into a time of rest. God gently spoke to my heart "don't miss this time of rest by being too eager for what's next or you will regret it." So I stopped and took in the rest that He was giving me. I didn't allow myself to feel guilty for being under productive; I ate it up. I blogged. I rested. I watched movies. I hung out. I enjoyed it immensely and realized that I was enjoying it so much that I may never want it to end!

And He was gracious in allowing it to end so fast that I didn't really notice it...until my new normal of The Call had taken its place. You know some transitions are better slow, and some are better fast. I am thankful for 9 1/2 months to prepare for a new baby but rip the band aid off and get it over with! This was a "band aid ripper" kind of transition. It was just best to dive in.

And I was ready. I was refreshed. I was energized.

What is The Call? Well, among all of the other busy things going on there is one thing into which I have been investing much energy and time. This is what I have been waiting for. What I feel God told me would happen months ago and yet He didn't say when or what.

This summer I was invited to become the coordinator for the new midweek children's programs in our church. After prayer and discussions with The Prairie Daddy I said "yes!"

This role has taken much, much preparation to get ready for our launch that is this Wednesday night. I have been enjoying the networking, creating, collaborating, learning, connecting, organizing and developing that this project required. This is my niche. This is my forte. This is what energizes me. I am a starter. I am an administrator. I am a networker. I love this stuff!

The Lord has been tremendously faithful and trustworthy in providing everything needed for this program. He has surprised me time and time again. When I originally looked over the new curriculum plans and put on paper how many people it would take to put this together I gasped when it would be best to have 18 leaders! But they only had about 10 last year! Oh no! I tried to revamp things so that we could get away with only needing 11. And as of a week ago today I had 4 people committed.

But we serve a big God...He invented big! And I know that I can ask. And ask I did.

As of today there are 17 of us with one more considering it. And 9 more willing to help out when needed. THAT IS 26 PEOPLE! Wow. I am just in awe.

This is just one example of the faithfulness of the Father.

So if my blog posts are sparse for a little while it might be because I am getting used to the new things on my plate. However, getting something started takes the most amount of energy and I am thinking that soon I will settle into a nice weekly routine (that is if the ranch and the rest of life quits throwing us curve balls here, there and everywhere!). I will hopefully be continually sharing more about what I am learning and witnessing as I sit in the passenger seat of The Call with the awesome driver, Jesus.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


That must be the sound following me these days...because I am a busy bee.

I am hitting 3 weeks of non-stop, planned days, lots of unexpected mini-crises, and tasks with deadlines. I am thankful for good rest at night (for the most part) and a joyful, abiding heart during the day (for the most part). I can tell the Lord is sustaining our family. At this point I should admit that I wish He would have sustained a clean house too : ). No really, He has provided, sustained, and maintained us. I am thankful, humbled, and trusting.

After the birthday crazies and the wild fire crazies things just kept on rolling. I was able to spend quality time with my girls' Bible study last week and then have a play date as well. On Saturday I spent hours finding items around my house to sell at a flea market in our little town's Labor Day celebration. I was pulling things off of the walls, out of cabinets, off the hangers in the closet, etc. I cleaned, priced, sorted, and loaded a large assortment of our home's dust collecting stuff. What a cleansing experience to get it out of the house!

Sunday we loaded up the truck and trailer and headed 2 hours down the highway to the sale barn with a load of cattle. We had semi load as well and The Prairie Daddy hauled the ones that couldn't fit on the semi. On the way home while The Prairie Kid was napping we snuck in a game of mini-golf and he woke up in perfect time for some ice cream. This was the only chance we had to celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary which was September 1.

On Monday, our anniversary, I headed to town for the flea market while The Prairie Boys stayed back to man the ranch. I had a great day and sold some items that I had been itching to sell for quite a while. One of those was the dress I had made for a rodeo pageant back in college. I was THRILLED to sell it to a sorta local rodeo queen. I hope she'll follow up with me and send me some pictures online of how she looks in the dress and how she does.

That evening I figured that there would be some nice TV time together to just relax. Who was I kidding? The Prairie Daddy had to go out and check cows around 6:30. At this point I called my mom and said "well, you know I've come a long way as a rancher's wife when I am not upset that he's out working on our anniversary. A couple years ago I would have been bawling."

Then he called to tell me there were problems. And then called again to say there was a cow that is having major birthing problems and the vet was on his way.

At 8:30 The Prairie Kid and I headed to the barn to join the "party." When we got there I was asked to hold open a gate and when I took my post it was just the right time. Right time for what, you ask? To see the vet take his scalpel and slice the side of the numbed, shaved cow about a foot long. This was my first ever cow c-section that I was witnessing. I wondered for a moment if I could handle it...and then realized #1 she is numb, #2 I was fascinated! I proceeded to watch them reach inside her, find her calf's feet, and pull him out. I am sorry to report the calf was already dead but the mom will be fine. And, we have a bum calf that we can let her have as her own.

After stitching her up it was time to go home. I was surprised to see the c-section take place in the cow's side because I hadn't ever pictured anything different than a human c-section. I found a not-too-gross picture for you to see what it was like. This is not our photo but one I found online to show you:

Yesterday I was really excited to go to the dentist and get a cavity filled. Woo-hoo! Actually, it wasn't too bad. I am sure that cow is in a lot more pain than I am!

I have an adventure to share with you soon but time does not permit it now because I just heard The Prairie Daddy pull in for lunch.