The cross is the greatest example of humility and devotion in the universe. Jesus put your needs ahead of His own. He considered you more valuable than Himself. - Chip Ingram

Friday, March 30, 2007

Give me a moment to mush.....

Okay, I get one mushy moment. I hate when people I care about are sick. I REALLY HATE it. So, Jenn B.....get well soon. I need your smiling face to complete me! LOL Seriously, get better cuz I miss ya.

Also, have you heard the song called "When I Get Where I'm Goin'"by Brad Paisley? Well, maybe you aren't a big country music fan, but the words are awesome. I was just listening to it and it made me happy. There are two parts to the song that are my favorite.

1) When I get where I'm goin' on the far side of the sky, the first thing that I'm gonna do is spread my wings and fly. I'm gonna lie beside the lion and run my fingers through his mane. And then I'll find out what its like to ride a drop of rain;


2) When I get where I'm goin' and I see my Maker's face, I'll stand forever in the light of his amazing Grace.

Thats what my mom is doing right now! How cool is that! Yay for you mom!

And for that....I will be thankful this Easter!!!!!

Hugs to all!

Okay, I need to be paid for this job......

I have noticed something about my kids. Maybe it is because they are sensitive. Maybe I haven't asked them to "suck-it-up" enough. Whatever the kids are "BIG" people. By that, I do not mean their size. I mean their emotions. If they love you..they love BIG. If they are sad, it is all consuming sadness. If they are had better seek cover. If they are hurt....BIG hurt. Not just one of my kids...ALL THREE.

Now, on one hand I consider this to be a huge pain in the can. It definately throws a crimper into motherhood. I'm sure the schools think I am nuts. Maybe some people don't even think my kids HAVE parents! HA! As my favorite, Ms. Erma Bombeck wrote: "If someone was to run an ad in the New York Times which read: WANTED: Household drudge, 140 hour week, no retirement, no sick leave, no room of own, no Sundays off. Must be good with animals, kids and hamburger. Must share bath, would 42 million women still apply?" Let's face it. This job of mothering sometimes seems to have no perks what-so-ever! Now, throw in the over-emotional and it can make for a looooonnnnngggg day.

But, now for the other hand. It is better to have feelings than to not feel. And all the people out there that have BIG emotions also have BIG hearts. They are do-gooders. They know compassion. Sure, they use their share of Kleenex, but maybe their emotions save others from tears.

This being said, Trent you WILL NOT embarass yourself in the chapel play. It will be okay. You may actually enjoy it. You are your worst critic. Paige, you are not alone in a room. You light up a room. There is a big difference. You just have to believe in yourself. Austin, putting your heart out there and loving BIG, well that just assures you that one day it will come right back at you. So, don't ever stop being that way.

Maybe one day I will get this motherhood thing down-pat. I'm not betting on it. I will probably start to understand when Trent has children of his own. Yep, just in time to lecture him on everything I think I know. For today, I have three sad faces.....and I'm looking for the right words to cheer these people on.

Okay, really..................I need to get paid for this job.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Picture Me In Your Mind....

Well, you can see that I have added my picture to this blog. Seriously guys, did you really think I would put an actual photo? You know I am WAY too insecure (and vain) to do that. So, instead, I decided to put a picture that Trent made of me. I like to think it is a great likeness. Especially the skinny waist and the bird legs. So, if this isn't good enough for will just have to picture me in your mind. Otherwise, I am the skinny one to the right. (hee-hee-hee)

Maybe You Don't Have Teenagers....

Maybe you don't have teenagers. Then again, maybe you do. If you DO have a teenager, or at least great exposure to one, have you noticed how they are taking pictures these days? GONE are the days of the statuesque pose. Gone are the pictures that look like they walked out of the JCPenney's catalogue. HELLO GHETTO! Hello scrunched faces and peace signs. Hello googly eyes and sly looks. Is it just me or has someone else noticed this? I actually have to DIRECT my kids on how to take a "normal" photo. So, in case you are missing this phenomena...I have proof.....

My Life As Erma

Do you know Erma? Erma Bombeck? I love this woman. I am probably dating myself considering she has been dead for quite some time. But everything Erma said always contained three things: 1) wisdom, 2) an element of truth and 3) humor. My mom loved Erma Bombeck and I inherited that love.

Today I was reading some of Erma's old writings. I would read a few minutes and then clean a few minutes. Somehow, I also managed to take a few pictures of some of the "ordinary" scenes around my house. I took a picture of this laundry basket that never seems to be empty. It never makes its way BACK upstairs. It is almost a permenant fixture outside of my laundry room. is annoying. Then, I read a quote by Erma that I thought was SO what I needed to hear:
"My theory on housework is, if the item doesn't multiply, smell, catch on fire or block the refrigerator door, let it be. No one cares. Why should you?

Aaahhhhh........relaxing, isn't it? That gave me peace for approximately two minutes and then back to more cleaning.

To all my friends out there....I APPLAUDE YOU. Many work out of the home. Many are housewives or have an in-home business. You are the caretakers of children and husbands. You are nursing elderly parents. You manage a household and finances. You try to make time for friends, hobbies and maybe even a little sanity. You try to give dignity to a job that isn't always dignified in our society.

That being said, I guess I will close with one more "Erma Quote": "Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the 'Titanic' who waved off the dessert cart."

Hugs to Pam, Trish, Jen, Barb, Nic, Jenn, Erika, Marty, Karen, Marilyn and anyone else I may have skipped who are just trying to "get it right and make it work."

Monday, March 26, 2007

One more thing I stink at......

Okay, OKAY! There is yet another thing that I stink at! Keeping track of birthdays! I even took my friend, Trish's class on making a perpetual birthday calendar and......I STILL STINK AT IT! So anyways, this morning I was reading Trish's blog to discover that I had forgotten another friend, Erika's, birthday! UGH! So sorry Erika! You know what makes me the most angry? Erika is the OPPOSITE and never misses a beat. You know, the most organized people you would ever meet?

Well, HAPPY BIRTHDAY Erika. I hope you had a wonderful, fun-filled, family-lovin' kinda birthday. AND.....I hope I get to see you real soon!

Hugs, Kid!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

*Sigh*......Moving On...........

I had to take my beautiful wreath down. Yeah, I know. I still had my Christmas wreath up during St. Patrick's Day. Totally against all of Martha's decorating rules. But, I love my wreath. I will bid it farewell until after Thanksgiving. But I had to give it one more hug.........

Little Things I Love................

It was a good weekend. I don't really have much to attribute that to, except a few little things.

First of all, my crocuses are blooming. (Ummm, hope I spelled that correctly!) They are the first dash of color in my yard at spring, and just the anticipation of them blooming makes me happy. The photo at the left was taken by Paige, in the rain. She is crazy like her mother.

Secondly, I had a house full of kids...and I mean a house FULL! Austin had six boys and Paige had three girls. And...I love it. They are all good people. The boys are into going to haunted places. Do you remember going to Gore Orphanage Road? I have to admit, I wonder exactly HOW MUCH trespassing they are doing, using my car...but they seem to be acting responsibly. So far, no ghosts. Paige's friends are all about taking pictures and music. I should throw food into the mix on both groups. I think we ate through our entire food budget for the next two weeks.

Thirdly, we have a gold medal olympian in our midst. My favorite first grader scored one big gold medal in the reading olympics. He had a little part to recite out loud. According to the teacher, he was a bit to shy to do it by memory. Trent read his part and read it beautifully. I love my timid little boy!

And for the grand finale......Paige was supposed to sing in a trio of girls at church. Well, the other two had microphone difficulties so it turned into a solo for Paige. And she was GREAT. So proud. She sang loud and clear. The song is called The Lamb and it has a great Easter message. YOU GO GIRL!

Love, love, LOVED my weekend of little things.

Thursday, March 22, 2007


Yes! Mike comes home today and I can't wait. I am ready for some assistance. I hope he doesn't think he is going to rest, because he has three kids waiting to see him and I can't WAIIIIITTT!

This picture pretty much describes the attitude I received while Mike was away. Don't get me wrong, I can handle myself AND I have good kids. But, that one in the red shirt needs to be sat on! Last night I told him he needed to go to bed and he said "make me." WHAT? WHAT? I hoped I hadn't heard him correctly but I did. (This one is a stinker.) Of course, Austin was in the kitchen and started to laugh. Nothing like a good support system. {{sigh....}} SOoooooo...I stooped down, got my face close to his and ask him if he REALLY wanted me to make him. Because I COULD make him but he wouldn't like it. He stomped upstairs to brush his teeth. Again, my great back-up was again laughing in the kitchen. I reminded him that his evil twin just left the room. Austin doesn't really think Trent knows what he is saying. I told Austin to educate him quickly, or I was going to hurt him! LOL! Yes, both my boys are stubborn and dig their heels in at times. But they sure can take care of themselves.

And....the one in her brother's blue Duke hoodie? Well, she is almost totally off of one of her meds and I couldn't be prouder. This little one can be a worker bee when she wants to be. I'm not sure she knows the potential she has, but I want to work on that one. I have a feeling about her......she may be one to really shake up the world. But, for today, she wants to bug me about buying YET ANOTHER CD. Apparently Hannah Montana has a new CD out. The idea of working to earn it didn't go over very good. But I know she will get moving. When she wants something she can really work her tail off! And as my friend, Martha Stewart would say....."that is a good thing."

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

We Suffered Through the First Night

It's not the first time Mike has traveled. Not by a long shot. But it has been awhile since his last business trip, so maybe that is why we are missing him so much. When I know he is coming home from work at night...I am fine. If he is leaving on a business trip, I miss him as soon as his feet cross the doorstep.

Running the kids has kept me pretty busy. I did take a breather this afternoon to read Stacy Julian's blog and ONCE AGAIN she hit the nail on the head. She finds THE best quotes and is so eloquent in her journaling that I am green with envy. In her most recent post, Stacy talks of her Grandmother's funeral. (By the way, she showed a photo of the casket at the cemetery and the mountains in the background were beautiful.) She reflects on the life of her grandmother and what we should prioritize in life. And, she used what I will call "the quote of the day."

There is no title, or achievement, no amount of position power or money, no possession, thrilling experience or adventure in this life that is more important than loving and serving those that are your family.

Pretty powerful, isn't it? I think I need to put it on a wall somewhere. I can stare at it on those days when I feel like what I am doing is insignificant. I especially love the "serving" bit. For me, the loving comes easy....but the, not so easy.
Speaking of serving, my friend Trish is holding a crop on Good Friday to benefit autism. GREAT IDEA. What Trish hasn't put out in print is that she is doing it to honor her mother and her health battles. And you know what the kicker is? Although her mom struggles from cancer, she wanted Ali to reach her goal for autism. Now we know where Trish's selflessness comes from. I should also note, we can learn alot from how Trish is living these days. She is not only raising a young family, but she is cooking, cleaning, shoping, driving and serving her parents. If, by chance, you do not read Trish's blog but are interested in the details of the me.
And Mike, if you are reading this while in Canada..I love you more than ever. And thanks....for serving our family.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Just Like My Own

There are some perks to raising kids. Yeah...I know. Somedays, those perks don't seem very evident. But one thing I am really starting to appreciate is some of the friends my kids have made over the years. Some of Austin's friends he has had since kindergarten and I have loved watching them change over the years. Some of his "newer" friends have been so much fun getting to know. I love when they come over...honestly, I do. I always try to cook or bake for them. And......they call me "mom." Secretly, I LOVE THAT! They are just good hearted kids. And I feel like they are my own.

Well, Lutheran West suffered a painful loss in Saturday's basketball game. No one felt it more than Trent. He so wanted to see Ohio State's Gymnasium. Don't get me wrong...he loves the longhorns. But he WAILED when he realized we weren't going to Columbus.

For me, the sad part is seeing these kids lose. Many of these kids don't play much during the first few years at West and it would be nice to see them have success in their Junior and Senior years. Actually, they did have a good season. I believe their record was 22-2. But State would have made it even better. And to be even more sappy, I hate the bawling cheerleaders. It breaks me up. And, mother in law cried too. We are a family of pansies.

Two of Austin's closest friends are on the team. And Trent took the opportunity on Sunday, when they were over, to talk "SMACK" to them. That's right. Trash talk. To High School Boys. This one is looking at a future that involves several black eyes. I just feel it. Thank goodness they "know" Trent and play along. The kids on the playground.....they may be another story someday.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

No Munchkin Land

Well, it has been interesting weather in Avon lately. The most interesting was our tornado warning yesterday. I really can't remember the last time we had a warning. We have had hundreds of watches but no warnings!

Wednesday evening I was home with Paige and Trent. Mike had taken Austin and his mother to see Lutheran West play basketball in Canton. As usual, I was missing the fun. Little did I know, but the evening would get very interesting. My friend, Jen called to see if I had the kids in the basement. WHAT? "You have a tornado warning!" UGH....As soon as I hung up the phone, the new weather sirens installed in Avon began to sound, so I took the kids to the basement......and it was pitiful. Trent just burst into tears.

Now, this was no surprise....the whole Trent crying thing. You see, I come from a long history of storm fear. My grandmother (sweetest woman you would EVER meet) was terrified of storms. She actually kept a bag complete with insurance information and crackers to take into the basement for each storm. She even told me a story that her mother had went to the well (at a very young age), got struck by lightening and had grey hair for life. Is this true? I have no idea. But when you are young...that grey hair thing can freak you out! Anyhow, my mother was infamous for making us all pile into our shower or lay behind our familyroom couch (as dad watched the storms out the window). Then, of course, there is the 4th of July tornado by Cascade Park when we were young. Don't get me wrong. I don't hate thunderstorms....UNLESS THEY ARE ACCOMPANIED BY WIND.

So, you get the picture. Trent comes by this honestly. Well, this poor kid was all over the place. "Will I ever play sports again?" and "Where will we live if our house falls down?" Thank goodness, Paige was in control. She sat him down and taught him how to play Scrabble.

After we came back upstairs, I checked outside and we did NOT land on a witch. There were no flying monkeys and no scottie dogs. We were not in muchkinland. I didn't get to sleep on a bed of poppies....but I did get to share some snoozetime with one frightened little 7 year old. Paybacks I guess, for all those nights between mom and dad.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Do YOU Know Anyone Like This?

I was on one of my favorite scrapbooking sites yesterday. I admit, again it is one of my "stranger" habits. You see, this site can have SO MUCH information yet, at the same time be so mean to others! UGH! I'm really getting tired of that and considering scooting this out of my life. Anyways, one thread was about Stacy Julian's blog. She had a post about her son who has ADHD. Many of the remarks were kind. Other remarks know.

I decided to go to the blog, not just because of the thread but because I LIKE Stacy Julian. She had a wonderful post about her son. I thought it was very real and heartfelt. She cited a quote in her post which I thought was sooo cool. It totally describes how I feel about some of the characters in my house. I thought maybe you would enjoy it......

"Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently -- they're not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do."

I'm off to get my crazy ones off to school to prepare them to change the world.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Keeping Sanity With The Insane.....

I spent a major part of my weekend keeping my sanity by keeping company with the insane. Saturday I went to a crop from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Well, I didn't stay until midnight. I left about 9:00 p.m. I must be getting old. I used to be able to pull those all-nighters, but NO MORE!

Anyhow, I got to scrap with some old scrapping buddies and IT FELT GOOD! The crop was run by my wonderful friend Trish, who happens to have a fabulous knack for entertaining the masses. This girl does everything over the top! The food, giveaways, trivia contest, kits and page-in-a-pinch layouts were just icing! Bravo, Sister!

I shared a table with my old friend Jen B. Now some of you may not know that when I say OLD friend, I am not referring to her age. Jen and I went to high school together. My renewed friendship with Jen is one of the best things I took with me when I left Scraptacular. Jen has a dry sense of humor and she is full of one-liners. I LOVE THIS GIRL!!!! She makes me roar! And even if I try to be serious, she brings on giggles. But, my favorite part about scrapping with her is that she has no expectations for me. She lets me scrap. Admittedly, I am no artist, designer and a rather basic scrapbooker. But, with Jen there is no competition. We are just having a good time, shooting the breeze and enjoying a hobby. Just the way it should be. (And by the way, she is an excellent cook! I am looking forward to new recipies!)

To add to my delight, my friends Nicole, Jenn, Erika and Marti were in attendance. I really forgot what it was like to crop while they sang their "ghetto" tunes in the background. I was thinking about how far their work has come since we worked together. It is nice that they have taken their work to a new level. Plus, it makes me plain old warm inside to be in the room with all of them....just working on our projects. Good times!

Jenn, you complete me.

Trish, I wish you wouldn't bring ants to the dang crops!

Over and out..............................

Thursday, March 8, 2007

What's Happening??????

Well, I haven't blogged in a few days. Basically, the past few days have passed so quickly that I thought I would just post a quick overview.


1) Trent did great at bean bag toss and was asked to sign autographs at school.
2) Austin attempted to put an Icy/Hot Patch on his groin injury until he realized it would remove all the hair in said area.
3) Paige started singing lessons and is practicing her "sprinkler" breathing techniques.
4) Mike has a sinus infection. His mother wants me to "look at him" more often, because she doesn't think his eyes look good! LOL (Okay, If I MUST!!!)
5) Yes, Trent is STILL watching the Ohio State/Michigan Football Game after school, especially the beginning with Script Ohio.
6) It is Lutheran Schools Week. This is big people. The only thing greater is if Marty Luther
himself walked through the door. BIG STUFF!
7) Many airplane entrails were left in the skies over Cleveland, leaving fear of terror attacks.
8) Dad went shopping with Vera at Dress Barn. Vera loved it. I'm willing to bet Dad's wallet
never left his pocket. Gotta work on that dad!
9) American Idol......Many misguided Americans voted off a couple of people that should have stayed.
Really...what do they see in Sanjaya?

Well, thats about all I can remember for now.

Check back later, peoples!

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Do You Remember Jr. High?

If or when you have a child in junior high, the trauma (and I mean TRAUMA) of the experience brings many memories rushing back to you. I wasn't particularly impressed with junior high. I never considered myself anywhere near popular. I liked to be quiet and fade into the background. Don't get me wrong, I had my friends. I just never seemed to be the "it" girl, although there were many days I wished I was the "it" girl. Of course, getting the chicken pox in seventh grade didn't help. Looking back, I KNOW it had to have taken two years for those chicken pox to go away.

More than chicken pox, my downfall was my skin. UGH. I fought acne until I was blue. And, of course, there were always the few "wonderful" children I went to school with who always had to mention my acne or create a new nickname for me.

Well, I grew out of it. BUT, a part of me won't forget it. And I know that is why I wear foundation EVERY DAY before I leave the house. As for the people who had all those comments....well, I have wished many things on them over the years such as burning yeast infections and male patterned baldness. Now, I mostly feel sorry for them. I feel bad that they didn't like themselves enough to look deeper at people.

Forward to 2007. My beautiful daughter is living my life. Only this time it isn't acne, it is her shape. Now, you know what? I LOVE HER SHAPE. Granted, when she went on her medication it put some weight on her, but she has worked most of that off! Now, if you know us Bursley girls, we aren't known for being tiny. We tend to have more healthy, athletic builds, as does Paige. But, for some, that isn't good enough and so the teasing has begun. And, it is vicious stuff, I tell you. Rail thin must be the rage, because my daughter is being teased at every turn.

I don't want her to turn into a hateful person. More than that, I don't want her to hate herself. She is beautiful inside and out and she needs to believe that. But she is believeing these kids.

So, my friends. Any suggestions? I have tried talking to the teachers and principal and I even cornered a few in the halls myself. And these kids are just bold enough to keep it up. UNBELIEVEABLE.

Think back to your insecure junior high days. Got any pointers?

Thursday, March 1, 2007

God's Eye

I received an email today from a very sweet woman whose daughter also suffers from OCD. Actually, her case is VERY similar to Paige's experiences. Although we have never met, Sandy and I often whether the same storms. She is a very Godly, warm, compassionate, loving mother. She and her daughter, Bre have reached out to help us whenever possible.

If you know much about me, you know that I am not fond of email chain letters. Actually, I am not fond of chain letters at all. I find it difficult to believe that God would change his eternal plan because I have decided to forward an email to my seven closest friends. It would be nice to think that would happen, but........I'm not buying what they are selling.

Anyhow, back to my email. Today, Sandy sent me the following message:

Dear All: This photo is a very rare one, taken by NASA. This
kind of event occurs once in 3000 years. This photo has done miracles in many
lives. Make a wish ... you have looked at the eye of God. Surely you will see
the changes in your life within a day. Whether you believe it or not, don't keep
this mail with you. Pass this at least to 7 persons. This is a picture NASA took
with the Hubbell telescope. Called "The Eye of God."
Okay, I LOVE THIS PICTURE and I'm not even sure why. I'm not about to change my stance on chain letters. But I did want some of my favorite people to see this photo. Can you imagine what He must see? I immediately thought of all the things I should do differently in His sight.
Just makes me think...............................