Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The surprise party

Last weekend we had a surprise party for lil Ava. There was a pretty big turnout on account of folks bringin multiple kids we didn't know. But that's kinda customary around here. I've brought strange kids to a few parties myself. The more the merrier, right? ;)

 It really was an extremely laid back affair. Puttin out those afghans really gave it a Roseanne vibe. Just a good family feel happenin.....
 Gabe's butt hangin out as usual.

 Miss Brenda and her clan were invited as friends but you know them, they brought their face paintin action ;) They're such a blessing to all who know them.

 I was beat by the time the pinata surfaced and left it solely up to Jerome. Ava and Sarah were the only kids who got to wack it and bust it. But I was just too relaxed to go tell Jerome the traditional rules. There was a crowd of disappointed kids, I tell ya. But I am glad Sarah got to bust it ;)

 I swear that boy purposely moons us!

Monday, June 24, 2013

A safe place, tears and more tears

My absence on here as of late has been one of necessity, I suppose. And with life pannin out as it has I guess the natural response (or mine, anyhow) would be to retreat.
Maybe it's unwise, or unadvisable but I really feel the swelling of pressure to just type some gritty stuff out. And bein heard by a small handful of strangers, with little to no accountability sounds like therapy right up my alley......
Last weekend my nephew and two nieces landed in our home for an indeterminate amount of time. The circumstances were ugly, CPS was involved and the night they came was so hard on all of us. Every single one of us. There are no winners in these types of situations. Everyone loses.
I prayed for God to bring them out of harm and into a safe place for so long. As dumb as it sounds, I never once considered that it would be here.
Initially, I was overwhelmed with relief for them. It was like the minutes after labor when all the pain, and frustration is over and the baby is there and you know the "hard" part is over. But like childbirth, the medicating joy and relief wears off and the reality of caregiving sets in. Even when you're tired. Even when you feel like you have nothing left. Even when you're frustrated.
You must give care.
And I'll be so honest right now. I have endeavored to always make my home a safe haven. I have always tried to protect the atmosphere of my home and those who know me would tell you, God is welcome in this home. He is honored and peace is evident here.
These kids are hardened, rightfully so. They are jaded  by "religion" and it's hypocrisies, as they have seen their parents "try out Jesus" for a brief moment. They are critical and distrusting of a "Father" who loves them unconditionally. The word "father" has nothing but negative strings tied to it and their disdain for a God who let this world eat them up is sometimes palpable. As my nephew said "Where was God when I opened my mouth in that bathroom and asked for his help before I was jumped by five guys?".......... I have answers but they will not be heard by a heart that won't hear them.
And as my niece said "Nana, that's your God not mine".......... I know the place where this comes from. I lived there in that place, too. But I am still shattered at times as I hear it, not for personal rejection of my beliefs but for the inevitable road that they will travel on their journey away from Him. 
Last night as violence and hatred overtook the brother's (one of them lives with my mom) I became angry at their mother. Everything we sow into these kids comes out one day.  We cannot produce morality or wisdom from foolish living. It is impossible.
 I am angry that parents abandon their children, though there may be food and shelter present they are abandoned nonetheless. I am angry that when I tried to help any of my sibling's and their families I was called "self-righteous, judgmental" and the consequence was an exclusion from their lives to keep me from "interfering" again. I am angry with the stories I overhear them retell in laughter of the sick and wicked things they saw adults doing in their lives, in these periods where I was not around. They have no concept of what maturity and adulthood should be. I am angry that my sister says they are better off with me and possibly will not rise up and fight the mother's fight to regain her mind, her heart and her own children.
I am angry that every time I have tried to help the children in my family I have been told they were manipulating me and lying and they were told that I was trying to break up their family, so don't trust me.
I am angry because my siblings choose evil and refuse the grace and redemption of God because let's just be real, they like their wicked lifestyle. 
I am angry it came to this.
I love these kids with all my heart, they will always have a safe haven here.  I will feel the heaviness of heart and body that seems to be constant. I will retreat to my bathroom or backyard when the tears evade my eyelids despite my best defenses. I will find ways to teach my children that though they are being exposed to things I never would have imagined at such a tiny age (Pentagrams?!) these things are not God's way and not the truth we will live. I will not shun these kids because it is "hard". And I cannot fake this without Jesus so I will need Him more than ever (hear that Lord?) I will give my anger to God and confess that if not for His grace, I would be on the other end of this story with my own children. Anything good in me is all Him.
You may feel that this is all too much, maybe unfair that a blog about the simple, trivial things of life would sneak this on you. You may feel out of place commenting though it never hurts to know you were heard ;)
But this place really is therapeutic for me. And with all this pressure, I just needed a familiar outlet.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Stumblin on an old friend :)

This past weekend I went out to see my parents, I hadn't been out since we moved into the house late December! I'm too hermity and not much for the phone so I need to make improvements on socializing. At least when it comes to family. I love em but I need to start pickin up that phone and tellin em!
Anywhoooo, we got into a super little yardsaling adventure and boy am I glad we did. We both really needed to get out and express ourselves in the best way we know how ;)
 We never intended to go out and prowl, we were really just gonna hang out on the porch and soak up each other's company.... but then my mom mentioned a yard sale and that was it.... in hindsight, I can see how this validly makes the menfolk upset. Add that to my list of self improvement :/
 So we made some quick sandwiches and sent the boys on their own (slightly less awesome) adventure....
 We went to a few sales in an older neighborhood that we know as a pretty regular hotspot and on the way out without even realizin what street I was on we passed Herb Hennekee out in his yard. And he was mowin his lawn with a push mower! So, I backed up and jumped outta the car and he was so happy to see us :)
And then he said "You wanna look?"
HA HA! Of course, we wanted to look ;)

 I had Sarah and my niece with me and Lord did they cut up! But I'm glad Herb met Sarah :)
 We didn't look long but we spent a quick $60. Honestly, my mom and I weren't interested in shoppin there that day. We were really just happy to see Herb. My mom is such a sweet soul....she really connects with people and I'm so proud to be her daughter. While I was bein young and slightly oblivious lookin through old records, she was talkin to Herb about his wife who's not doin too well.  Gee, add that one as well to the old list. :/

You know, I feel like this post is over.  I will pick it back up in a little bit......

Monday, June 10, 2013

The official Birthday end for Ava

Now it's official  :)

Ava's morning

This has been our morning here on Ava's 5th birthday.
Did you know that Ava's nickname since she was a teeny little baby is Boo Bobby?

She's truly a special little girl <3

Friday, June 7, 2013

Snowcone Bust

Since Ava's been gone we've been gettin reports on all the fantastic adventures she's havin (splash-pad, swimming, Happy meals and play place, early birthday cake, put put golf, etc. etc.) and that's really gettin Sarah's goat. So, I'm tryin to overcompensate and find neat things for the other two to get into.....

 Ya know how I always reference our town bein like Friday Night Lights?
Yeah, that's a Katy Tigers logo on the snowcone stand tables.....

 The snowcones were a bust and we ended up throwin em away because the kids didn't really care about em. The most fun was watchin Sarah hit these folks up for their autographs. She made every last one of em sign her book because like she said "If you sign, now we're friends, okay?"

Sarah's gonna make an intense friend one day.
Have a great weekend ya'll!