10 things every mom needs to know

this made me laugh cry. a very weird emotion where i both laugh & cry at the exact same time. usually when i'm tired & usually when i really need to. :)

just take 3 minutes to be reminded of how awesome you are. :)


sinking deep {a song diary}

it happens like this sometimes. so unexpected. moments so unworthy to hold the glimpse of eternity they reveal. but i think it happens like that a lot... at least for the mamas of the young. how He so graciously unwraps Himself in such insignificant places. amongst the crumbs & crumble of life.

and i just broke. right there amungst the dirty floors & sticky counters & the signs of life littered all over the windows & walls. the kitchen spinning around me into nothing. all the things that only moments ago tethered me so mercilessly to the earth, the concern & tangly weight of people & their messes. confronted with the ugly realities, the dirt of life hanging heavy & syphoning precious hard won life. and i was afraid. afraid to make all the wrong choices. afraid of how to wake up tomorrow & face the next brutal day. and then it all crumbled beneath me. and the earth just faded and all i could see was heaven, the glory of His face.
standing here in Your presence, in a grace so relentless
i am won by perfect love
wrapped within the arms of heaven, in a peace that last forever
sinking deep in mercy's sea
a love so deep that it didn't matter if things would be alright. i didn't need the answers. i only needed to see Him. touch Him. hold Him. and i sobbed there on the musty, dog dirtied floor, beholding His beauty, His splendour. i couldn't see anything else. so beautiful i couldn't open my eyes. His mercy swelling waves of all consuming love over my heavy shoulders.
i'm wide awake, drawing close
stirred by grace, all my heart is Yours
all fear removed, i breathe You in
i lean into Your love, Your love
and i never heard the phone ring with news of yet another sewage flood at the rental. i didn't notice the odour of urine imitating from the little boys bathroom or the mountain of pukey laundry collecting at the bottom of the stairs, didn't notice the needy e-mails collecting in my inbox. i didn't even notice we were out of advil. i just sat there a moment & basked.
when i'm lost You pursue me/ lift my head to see Your glory
Lord of all, so beautiful
here in You i find shelter, captivated by the splendour
of Your face, my secret place
and there in the ugly imperfect, i beheld the most perfect thing i've ever seen. 
my everything.
Your love so deep is washing over me,
Your face is all i seek, You are my everything
Jesus Christ You are my one desire,
Lord hear my only cry, to know You all my life.


a well loved canoe

maybe it was the alluring sense of adventure in the air, teasing & taunting me with curiousity. a break from the safe & everyday groves of life. maybe it was the hope of turning around someone elses rough day. maybe it was just plain old generic crazy in the air.  whatever possessed me to try & retreieve that old beat up canoe from the furry of a windy bog, maybe i'll never know.

it all started out with a hope. the hope of a quiet overnight respite at the cottage in the woods. with bags all packed & babes snapped into their seats tight, we headed on our way in the middle of a wind storm. 

we arrived with hands white knuckled & backs arched with tension after being blown about on a busy highway. but hope undeterred & excitement building, we marched our troops into cold but cozy beds for an afternoon nap. except for the oldest, too excited to sleep, two steps behind, asking a million questions. the dogs galloped back & forth with the whipping wind as we unpacked the van & settled inside infront of a warm fire. 

and then all went dead. all the noise that you never knew you were listening to, quieted. all the fans & furnace & hum of the refrigerator. dead.  except for the distinct sound of mice scouring through the walls. and the smallest babe began to cry, still tucked in her bed. all frightened by the silence. 

and our excitement began to dwindle just a little as we began to extrapolate our options of a cold dinner in the dark with no heat. no heat for hours & hours possibly. 

steve came in from outside to announce that the boat & canoe's ropes had snapped & both a begun to quickly drift. he had caught the boat & re-tethered it but the canoe had been blown all the way to the other end of the bay & was being smashed into some flooded trees.

"it's too far & to dangerous for me to get the canoe..." he said
"but that's tom fallaise's canoe?!" i exclaimed. 
"i know but what do you want me to do about it?"
the canoe had belonged to a dear friend of steve's who had passed away many years ago. he had often talked about the fond memories with tom & this was the only thing he had to remember him by. i knew how much that canoe had meant to steve & i knew that if we didn't retrieve it tonight it would likely face a variety of demises. this canoe had gotten me into trouble before but it's crazy the things we do to remember. 

anyways, i knew steve had had a tough day, with several frustrating phone calls on our way to the cottage & i thought to myself... i'm going to get that canoe... even if it kills me. 

steve chuckled & smiled facetiously at my fervour. 
"there is no way you can get around that bog. you can try but i think you should just leave it. it'll be too hard...for you." he said. 
but he knew what he was doing. he knows what those kind of statements incite in me. absolute dedicated "i'll show you!" kinda attitude. the "i can do anything you can do better" mantra took over & i marched outside to look for the hip-waders {which turned out to have a hole in them... stupid mice}.

i left steve to calm the littlest one & shop vac water out of the basement & to clean up the cluster of mouse corpses that had collected while we were gone on the counter. 

and dav didn't miss a beat asking a million questions about where i was heading off to in my pink rubber boots & why i was going & how i was going to do it.
"i don't know dav. i'm just going to try" i said as i stuffed my pocket with a long dog leash, the only rope-ish kind of thing i could find. mcgyver would be proud.
 dav & scout followed until we got to the edge of the foreboding bog. the wind was whipping all kinds of debri through the woods & so i sent dav back to the cottage. but scout, my trusty adventure dog, stayed close by my side. it was comforting to know that at least someone was going to witness my awesomeness as a conquered this feat swiss family robinson style. 
i jumped across a few plots of raised reeds dispersed in a lumpy lake of water. until there was a bigger gap where i knew i was going to have to jump wide & hard to make it to the next plot. 
and so i jumped hard & wide & missed. big time.
my pink rubber boots split right up the side as they sunk up to past my knee....just then a roaring wind whipped through the old dead but crowded bog and limbs of every shape & size came crashing about. one large limb missed us by only a few feet...
"STTTTEEEEVVVVEE! I need HEEELLLPPP!" my voice evaporated into the wicked wind. 
 scout, my once trusty adventure dog, panicked & hightailed it outta there... to get help pressumably. hopefully. maybe?
i'm going to get knocked unconscious & then drown, i thought. but then steve's little smirk came back to my memory & i thought, you got this.
i prayed a little prayer and then managed to dislodge my freezing cold boot of bog water with a little grunting & grumbling & pulled myself up a little doon of mud. and there i was in a wild raging wind storm lost in an abis of bog pulling myself along by making little make shift bridges & tethering myself to trees & pulling myself along the bendy branches of saplings. 
i finally made it to the canoe trashing on the disappearing shoreline. half sunk with three paddles & a baby life jacket. 
through a makeshift lever system, i cranked the canoe over, briefly contemplated getting into it & tying the baby life jacket around my waist but i thought the water too violent & then tied everything safely but temporarily to a tree. i climbed on top of the canoe & straddled it between my legs. and there. on that well loved canoe. i cried a little.
i bellowed into the wind a few more times hoping to attract anyones attention.
after thinking a little, i realized that steve couldn't come & save me. he would need to stay with the four kids & there was no way for him not to jeopardize his own safety at the same time. i was on my own.
jax occassionally bounded past the end of the canoe & crashed through the bog like a panicked deer on steroids & then disappeared again before i could allure him to my side so i could ride him out of this mess. 
scenes from 'swiss family robinson' came to my remembrance {i knew watching it so many times with the boys would come in handy at some point}. i could picture the robinsons wading through the river & their different tricks they had. only they were in a tropical climate & i was clearly not.
and then i thought once again, i got this. 
i broke off a strong stick to help balance me along this time. still favouring a previous "jack-o-latern carving" wound, i pulled my way across saplings & tree trunks. half way on my way back steve & scout showed up across the way.
"STEVE! i'm really stuck!" i shouted against the wind.
"that must be really hard for you!" he shouted back sarcastically {referring to a video i had made him watch... about men needing to listen & not just fix things... cheaky boy}
i shouted a few choice words back not realizing dav was hiding behind a tree next to him.
they watched me balance & slosh the rest of the way to dry land. i climbed the hill where they were standing & dav said...
"mummy, we never say shut up. you should ask for daddy's forgiveness."
i bit my lip so hard & then i said, pretty convincingly i think, "i'm sorry daddy" & then trudged off to the dry, warm-ish cottage. 

the point is i saved that well loved canoe & i lived to tell the story. and it was horrendously fun & terrifying at the same time.
and i was proud of myself. proud that i could still adventure even with four kids. even in my life stage of needing to be practical & save & plan. even with two useless dogs. and even with a busy life.

may adventure find you where ever you are.