Tuesday, August 31, 2010


I have been wanting to post an entry about this for a while.  Do you ever feel like your life is redundant?  Wake up, feed kids, clean dishes from last night, start laundry, school, lunch, sweep kitchen, laundry, finish school, take a nap (maybe if you are lucky), make dinner, hang with kids, brush teeth, bath time, bed time, up til 11 watching junk, wake up, feed kids, clean dishes from last night, start laundry, school.....you get the idea.  I don't want to leave out cleaning the litter box, feeding the animals, letting the dog out, letting the dog in, yelling at the kids to clean up, going in after them to do it right, mopping the floors, cleaning up spills, changing diapers (or now it is cleaning up accidents).  There are so many other things that I know I am missing. 

Don't get me wrong.  I love being a mom, wife and teacher.  Recently I have learned that it really is okay to take care of myself.  I have been doing this by running in the evenings.  It is a great release of all of the frustrations from the day.  Last night I just took off.  I usually run much slower.  It felt good. I was going really fast.  My legs were hurting in areas that had not been affected by my running before, but I didn't care.  It felt good.  I made it around the track quickly.  The wind that passed by my sweaty body felt FANTASTIC.  I could have gone forever.  But I couldn't figure out how to control my breathing at that pace.  So I eventually had to stop because I couldn't breathe. 

Where am I going with all of this?  Well as my life has been feeling redundant I have started adding some new things to it.  I started running.  Taking better care of myself. When the running became redundant I changed it up I ran faster and pushed myself!  So how can you make your life less redundant?  I don't know what works for you.  I know that for me this new phase of running has been good for me.  I don't necessarily like running, but I love the feeling it gives when it is accomplished.  I look forward to that feeling!

* I apologize for the way this is all over the place! I wrote this on two different days and my kids have been in and out!*

Monday, August 23, 2010

Losing weight

I have not posted anything about this yet because my before is soooo bad!  But I am biting the bullet because I have made great progress!

The before!  HUGE!  
12 lbs, 15 inches and 2 dress sizes smaller!
Please excuse the 2nd pic, Jackson took it.  I do not have two chins anymore!  But this picture shows that I do!  I am doing weight watchers and it is good.  I have also been training to run a 5K in September!  I will keep you all posted! :)

First day of school...

Today we had our first day of class at The Brown Academy.  Jackson is in 2nd grade and Ellie is in Pre-K but we are going to integrate some kindergarten mid year.  Charlotte started Tot-School today as well.

The day started well.  I was able to get some quiet prayer time in before the kids jumped into bed with me.  Surprisingly, Charlotte slept in until 9 am which was both good and bad.  Jackson and Ellie had a great breakfast and then we sat down at the school table to start our day.  We have changes in the rules and in the way our schedule is.  We also have a new reward system that the kids were excited about implementing.  Tight at the first break is when Char woke up.  She was ready for breakfast and the kids were able to go outside and play for 15 min.  They decided to swing.  I also took this time to get their first day of school pics.  They are funny because Jackson got dressed into pajamas today, Ellie doesn't match (go figure) and Char is in her panties.  Welcome to the flexibility of homeschooling!

Then we came back in and started again.  I took the approach that I would teach each child one at a time while the other had some other easy assignment to work on.  This worked well.  While working on reading with Jackson, Ellie colored her Bible story page and then read books in the reading corner.  While Ellie and I worked on reading/phonics, Jackson worked on handwriting.  Charlotte played with some pom-poms in a bowl that she scooped out with a giant spoon. I got this idea from my friends blog.  Charlotte loved it and Ellie even got in on the fun! The girls also worked on puzzles.  Ellie was able to piece together a puzzle by herself that she had never done before.  She was so proud!

All in all it was a good day.  It wasn't without its ups and downs.  Charlotte had 3 accidents which has got to be a record for her.  Then she spilled all of her chicken noodle soup on the floor.  It was everywhere!  Thanks goodness I have a dog that likes to eat off of the floor.  It made clean up easier! 

Now we are all relaxing and me? I am blogging! 

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Giving it over and not missing out on the loaves.

Monday was our quarterly Women's Series at KBC.  The topic was seeking God.  It was so good.  I will try to recap it for you so this post makes sense. 

When Jesus fed the 5000 with the loaves and the fish, it was a miracle, but the Disciples did not see it. "Their hearts were hardened" Mark 6:52.  They were not able to see this awesome miracle that should have blown them away.  There they were in the wilderness and the Son of God was performing one of His mighty miracles.  They were not seeking Him.  They were going through the motions. 

If we are actively seeking the Lord in all situations there is no way we can miss the miracle of the loaves.  The thing is that Jesus is the Bread, the Bread of Life.  He is what is needed to sustain us in the wilderness.  He is our sweet Manna from Heaven.  I don't want to miss out. I don't want to be hungry, or even worse, starving.

The key in seeking Him is to build an alter in ourselves and give all of our worries and fears over to Him.  That way He can take care of it and we don't have to worry about it. The whole point of an alter is to kill something and then offer it to God so that He can wipe it clean.  Wow!  Can you imagine creating an alter in your heart everyday and offering all of your junk to Him and having Him wipe it clean?  And on top of that actively seeking Him so that His Presence is before you in your everyday life..

There is so much going on here.  Troy's job, health (for all of us), finances, school and the list go's on and on.  I have doubts about a lot of things.  We, as a family, are in a wilderness. I have worries.  I  want to give them over and not worry about them.  For the most part I have.  But recently there have been some pretty "dire" situations in my home.  I have thought and thought about them.  Worried over them. Talked with friends about them.  Everything but actually give it over so that He can squash them. 

Yesterday was the first day I actually did give them over and leave them there.  It was day filled with grace and mercy.  Not only did I feel the Presence all day, my kids had a better day.  There was no yelling and when it was time to discipline it was smooth.  On top of that I did not once think about my situation. Not once did I worry about mortgage payments or hospital bills.  I didn't think about what kind of job Troy was going to have or not have! It was good.  And it happened because that morning I woke up and gave it all to Him first.  He took it and He stayed with me all day.

Today is day two of this new process.  I already feel peace.  I slept very little and normally this is the perfect makings of a disastrous day.  I don't think it will be, because He has promised to go before me.  I don't want to miss out on the loaves, I don't want to just go through the motions so that one day I can do it all again.  I want to get it the first time and tell others about it.  

Monday, August 9, 2010

Such a time as this

Today I had the opportunity to talk to a good friend for over 2 hours on the phone.  She was so encouraging and I was so thankful that we had the chance to talk.  She shared past and current struggles with me and although they are not the same as mine they are similar.  God is growing her and her family in such a way that you just smile from ear to ear when you see His fingerprints on her life.  There is no mistaking that he has brought her through the fire. 

I also talked to another friend and was encouraged by her struggles.  I know, it sounds kinda wrong to be encouraged by another person's struggle, but I was.  She is a new friend that I am so glad that the Lord has placed in my life.  She has issues, I have issues, but the cool thing is that we can talk to each other and relate to each other because of them.

It is no secret that this past week has been a little chaotic.  Troy was laid off, the kids all had doctor's appointments to the tune of $163 (definitely not in the budget), Troy went to the ER for chest pains and spent the night.  He is fine by the way but it was just an added stress.  I have blogged and even posted facebook status updates on how the Lord is good no matter what.  It is true, I really believe that.  I have had several calls, texts and emails praising me for my faith in this time.  The thing is it is not me, it is the Lord.  When Troy lost his job the peace that I felt was so overwhelming, more then any anxiety that I have ever encountered.  How could I not have a strong faith when I feel His presence wrapped around me in this very moment.

There are two important things I want to point out.  One is that the Lord has changed my relationships over the past several months.  I didn't get it at first but I am seeing it now.  He has put me in with a network of believer's that are going through similar issues as myself.  Or have been through them for that matter.  The other thing is that God has never left me.  He doesn't do bad things to people but He allows trials so that in the end we will be able to see how He carried us through it.  He has already laid out a specific group of friends and circumstances for such a time as this.  I know that in the end I will cry out to Him like David did when he said " Who am I Lord, that you have brought me and my family this far?". This has turned into one of my favorite passages.  I rest on it knowing that the Lord can and will do the same for me!

 16 "Then King David went in and sat before the LORD, and he said:
       "Who am I, O LORD God, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? 17
And as if this were not enough in your sight, O God, you have spoken about the future of the house of your servant. You have looked on me as though I were the most exalted of men, O LORD God.  18 "What more can David say to you for honoring your servant? For you know your servant, 19 O LORD. For the sake of your servant and according to your will, you have done this great thing and made known all these great promises.
 20 "There is no one like you, O LORD, and there is no God but you, as we have heard with our own ears. 21 And who is like your people Israel—the one nation on earth whose God went out to redeem a people for himself, and to make a name for yourself, and to perform great and awesome wonders by driving out nations from before your people, whom you redeemed from Egypt? 22 You made your people Israel your very own forever, and you, O LORD, have become their God.
 23 "And now, LORD, let the promise you have made concerning your servant and his house be established forever. Do as you promised, 24 so that it will be established and that your name will be great forever. Then men will say, 'The LORD Almighty, the God over Israel, is Israel's God!' And the house of your servant David will be established before you." 1 Chronicles 17:16-24

Saturday, August 7, 2010


There is a lot of adult drama at my house and in the midst of all of that my kids are doing more and more fun things. 

Jackson-Is learning the ropes of the neighborhood so that he can ride his bike over to his friends house.  He has also been reading really well to me.  I still don't think he is on 2nd grade level but he has come so far in just under a year.  He is excited about all of the new books I have been getting for school.  I think this will be a fun year, harder but fun.

Ellie-She has really improved with her swimming this year.  There is no doubt that next year she will be jumping off the diving board with no assistance.  I am amazed at how well she is doing.  We did not do swimming lessons because they are crazy expensive and well, I never had them and I am a great swimmer.  Last night we rode bikes to a friends and she rode hers the whole way.  She did get a little tired but she stuck in there.  She is such a trooper.

Charlotte-We have officially started the potty-training process.  Not because I was ready but because she was.  It started with her taking her diaper off every time she was wet.  One day while the kids were gone and it was just Charlotte and I (Charlotte was naked) I said "Go sit on the potty."  She did and she peed.  She was so excited and that was the beginning of the end for diapers.  We are not totally trained yet, but we will get there I know.  I am just taking my cues from here.  I figure she is not even 2 yet so what is the rush.  Besides she is my baby! 

I have some pics on my camera and one of my goals is to download them and post them on the blog.  So maybe pics will be on here today.

Friday, August 6, 2010

An update....

Troy received his termination notice in the mail today.  I laughed when I read it!  It was comical.  I could only think of Carrie Bradshaw and the infamous break-up via a post-it!  Except this time it was via USPS.  Whatever, I really don't care.  No really, I don't care.  It is so strange because you would think that Christi Brown would be freaking out.  That is my usual reaction.  I tell you what it is.  It is the "peace that passes all understanding" that only the Holy Spirit can give.  I have no idea what is in store for us.  I hope it is not a move but pray that it is something better then we could have imagined.  There is so much going on in the lives of our friends and our families that I know it is only because there is another force trying to stop the awesome things that God has planned for us.  So guess what, I am looking on with the eyes of a six year old on Christmas morning.  They are big and I can't wait for the wonderful surprises under the tree!  It may be redundant but it is true, God is good!

A post on Troy:

This is an email I sent out about Troy's job situation.  I thought I would post it here too so that everyone would know. 

Some of you have called to check on his job. It is all over the news so I thought I would just put it out there so you all would know. His company will be laying off 1600 people. All of the temps and contractors will be laid off on Sept 1. Today they mailed out 500 termination notices to full-time employees. We will know if he is losing his job by Saturday. On October 1, they will be laying off another 500 employees. There is a severance package to those that get laid off that really is not that bad. Once they are let go they will have a job for 60 days and then after will be compensated based on how long they have worked for the company. Troy is not 100% but he is pretty sure that he will be laid off. We are just trusting the Lord that another job will be waiting if and when he does. God has not let us down ever, and I don't think he will start now! :) I will keep crying out that GOD IS GOOD!!!!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A little bit of a rant.

So I know you don't care but I gotta get it out.  We all have plans.  You know you do!  I do too!  I have an idea of how things are going to work and although just recently I blogged about how I know that God's plan is perfect I am having a tough time right now!  This has nothing to do with finances, although it will affect them eventually, my worry is about Troy.  I am worried about his health and how he doesn't seem to think that it is that important.  He rarely takes care of himself.  He has heart disease and diabetes.  Not to mention the broken foot that is still not better yet! 

He was going to apply for a new job this week but now it looks like he will have another surgery on his foot.  And to top it all off he is having other health issues!  Why is this happening?  I want him to get a new job, he wants to get a new job.  I have been praying about this.  Maybe not enough.  I haven't gotten a yes or no yet, and I don't think he has either. 

Also, I truly feel as though the Lord told me that we were going to have another child in our home.  Not any child, a girl with special needs.  I feel as though this will be through the foster/adoption system.  How is this ever going to happen with all of this other crap going on?

Don't get me wrong I know that I am not in control and that God is, but at this moment I would just like to know why.  I would love details, although I may not get them.   So I guess I will just sit here and wait and try not to go too crazy. 

If you want to pray for me you can pray for Troy's health (he has a dr's appt tomorrow), peace in the unknown, and clear paths!  Thanks friends!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Friends and Relationships: A challenge

By nature we are social creatures.  God designed us that way.  We are to be in fellowship with each other and even to lean on each other in hard times.  We crave a closeness with other human-beings. 

I have noticed lately that although I have great friends there is not a closeness that I crave.  Looking back at this summer I see why.  Troy was home all summer and he threw our schedule off.  The kids and I never did anything with friends because we were staying home with him. 

Recently I have talked to several people who have been feeling like they have lacked a closeness with friends.  Sure, they all have friends but not the relationships that they need and want.  This is a trend!  Business and mixed priorities can be to blame.  I don't think any-one person leaves someone out because they don't want them around or doesn't call another because they just don't want to.  I think that we get busy.  We have priorities that do not involve others outside of our own families.

This is a sad thing.  If we were hard-wired by our Creator to have a relationship with each other and we are not doing it we will feel lonely.  But how do we change our mindset?  I have a little challenge.  To start; make a one phone call a day to a friend you haven't spoken to in a while.  Pick a time of the day that the kids aren't screaming and needing all of your attention.  Speaking to 5 different friends in the week will make you feel connected to the outside world and will also help to rebuild any broken or bruised friendships.  The next thing is to try to have a family over for dinner.  It is more fun to do it at your house.  You won't have to worry about all those kids at the restaurant and you have more time for fellowship.

We were made for this!  We should make it a priority.  I know that in the Brown house we will be doing this.  So if you get a call from me, you will know I am trying to rebuild our relationship!  And if you don't, wait!  I just haven't gotten to your name yet!  :) 

Our time is short here on earth.  We should spend it loving on one another not being busy with stuff that has no eternal reward!