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Lamp & Light

I follow a lady named Kristin Schmucker on instagram. Towards the end of October she announced that she was hosting a photo challenge for the month of November & I decided to jump on that and participate.

lamplight

I did get days behind and then had to play catch up but I am happy to report that I actually did all 30 days! I usually start these things and then finish them….go me!!

I was going to share the pictures from instagram to facebook but then I thought that I would just put them all here & add the description that I wrote along with it.
I don’t really know why I choose to share this way but oh well, I did!

My tattered bible along with the current bible study I’m doing.#lampandlight #day1 #imbehind#playcatchup #novemberphotochallenge#bible @kristinschmucker#kristinschmucker

Reminds me to always know that the bad that happens is to bring Him glory!#lampandlight #novemberphotochallenge#day2 #genesis50:20 #playcatchup#imbehind #favoritebibleverse@kristinschmucker #kristinschmucker

One of my favorite mugs. Given to me by a great friend as a Christmas present. Every time I use it I think of her and all the fun we have together!#novemberphotochallenge #lampandlight#day3 #mugshot @kristinschmucker#kristinschmucker

My Bible study spot…..where I’m comfortable and snuggly & if I fall asleep while studying (which happens often), I don’t have to get up and move! 😜
#lampandlight #biblestudyspot #day4#novemberphotochallenge@kristinschmucker #kristinschmucker

I have many goals that I’d like to accomplish in my life. At the end of the day I know none of that matters if I’m still the old me. It’ll take time but I know that my ultimate goal is to be a better me than I was yesterday.
#lampandlight #day5 #playingcatchup#goals

The book of Proverbs is an instructional manual in my opinion. It can tell how you act and what to say. So much wisdom is within those pages.
#lampandlight #day6 #playingcatchup#day6 #proverbs #bookinthebible

As much as they drive me questions and even question I was given an army of mini me’s, these little people have made my world better. They have taught me so much and made me step out of my comfort zone to give them a better life. I love them and they certainly my small blessings.
#lampandlight #day7 #playingcatchup#smallblessings #mykiddos

A prayer in my bible from a few years ago. #lampandlight #day8#playingcatchup #anoteinyourbibe #prayer

This is one of my favorite quotes. My dad used to say this all the time when I was growing up and it’s so true.
#lampandlight #favoritequote#playingcatchup #day9

This has been something that’s been laid upon my heart for at least 6 months, if not more. It’s something I’m praying about and asking God to tell me where and how I should do this.
#lampandlight #onyourheart#playingcatchup #day10 #titus2:3-4

This journal is one of my favorite things. A great friend gave it to me and it’s a place where I can create and draw out the Word when it touches me.
#lampandlight #afavoritething#playingcatchup #day11 #biblejournal#create #givenbyafriend

I know that I’m given grace ever second of my day but to be able to wake up every morning and start from a clean slate is the biggest sign of grace to me.
#lampandlight #areminderofgrace#playingcatchup #day12 #sunrise #grace

There are too many to list but this seems to be one of the biggest prayer requests I have right now. A house. One that will fit us more comfortably than the one we are currently in. One that we can call home.
#lampandlight #day13 #caughtup#aprayerrequest #aplacetocallhome

“We bring the kingdom come” We Christ followers are the ones who bring the kingdom to others on a daily basis. Not only do I love this lyric but I love this song!
#lampandlight #day14 #favoritelyric#webringthekingdomcome #jasongray#witheveryactoflove

A dream would be for Mister to be a stay at home dad with me.
#lampandlight #day15 #dream#stayathomedad #stayathomeparents#freedom #timeandmoney

My memory today is my grandparents on my moms side. I miss them much and it saddens me to no end at what they are missing out on. I’d give almost anything to have them back!
#lampandlight #memory #grandparents#wishtheywerestillhere #mcgrew#missthem #lovethem

 These two things are always on my to do list. There are others but laundry & dishes take most of my time.
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day17#todolist


 I love her story and think she is a great example of what you do doesn’t define you & anyone can change.
#lampandlight #characterinthebible #day18#rahab

Nature can give us signs of life & death but has a way of making it look so beautiful. It’s almost thanksgiving and though most trees are turning and leaves are falling, they still are so green! And that blue sky….I just love me a Texas clear blue sky!
#lampandlight #day20 #nature #texassky#fall #trees #lifeanddeath #beautiful

When I study scripture or just read my Bible, I have my purple pen, Bible, and my journal. I never know when a verse will hit me and I want to be ready to journal it.
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day21#howistudyscripture

I have to be honest and say that I haven’t read Psalms enough to have a favorite verse from this book. Think I know what book I’ll be reading next!
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day22#favoritepsalms #bookofpsalms


This is a book that helped me to be involved where I feel led/called to be involved in. I’ve cut out the ‘extras’ and just concentrating on my calling.
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day23#abook #calling #thebestyes#lysaterkeurst


  This word is one that I’ve taken to heart over these last few months to a year & a half. My joy cannot and will it be stolen by anyone or any situation that life throws me. I choose joy. Bad things can happen but my joy still remains.
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day24#joy #cantstealmyjoy #ichoosejoy

This will always be home to me. I’ve lived in many places but Virginia will always have a special place in my heart.
#lampandlight #day25 #myhome #virginia#specialplaceinmyheart


  
Me! You! We are all attributes of God. We are made in His image!
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day27#anattributeofgod #me #you#madeinhisimage
  This is so true and definitely something I’m thankful for!
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day26#whatimthankfulfor #friends #family

   We are mixed up, crazy, tired, annoying, real, and all of this equals a beautiful mess.
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day28#abeautifulmess #welkerfamily #family#welkerkiddos #welker


  It took awhile to figure out how we were going to announce that we were expecting baby number 6 but I love how this turned out. Things can change with one step (literally & figuratively) and our step was adding two more feet to our family.
#lampandlight #playingcatchup #day29#aphotoilove
PS- just want to say that I am NOT pregnant. I tried to word it so it explained a previous pregnancy announcement but it didn’t come across that way.
I’ve been saying this for as long as I can remember & it’s so true.
#lampandlight #day30 #wordstoliveby

 

There is my 30 day photo challenge! Hope you enjoyed it…..let me know if you did this one too! Now onto my December challange!!!<<<<Let me know if you will do this one with me!

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From the heart of an 11 year old young man. 

These are songs that my 11 year old son wrote himself and brought to Mister and I. I held back tears when reading these. I will cherish and keep these papers forever! I pray he continues to write these songs!


Jesus is my savior

Oh God we come and sing for your glory today. Where we go. Jesus is my savior and lord for all. No one can stop him from the spirit of God. Yeah (repeat 2x). Jesus is my savior for me and you. Oh oh oh. The flowers in spring will shout your name (echo repeat 2x). There’s no other God but you. You are the spirit in us. Jesus is my savior. Am for you (repeat). 

AMEN (repeat 2x)

We love you lord of all God. 

Fire in my heart 

There is a fire spreading in my heart. He’s love is like a foreign my heart. My heart is on fire because of my God is with me (repeat 2x). It’s like my heart is melting with God. Yeah (repeat). He is the only one we shall worship. Who loves us!!

Jesus (repeat)

And his love never fails on me. Yeah. Oh oh oh ohhhh. Because there is fire in my heart (repeat). Yeah. 

We are a flower blooming

In God we trust. It’s so great and powerful. Your name is great and your song is sung. In the name of Jesus there is power (repeat). We are a flower blooming in the sun where your spirit holds in place. For everyone believes in you shall have eternal life with with you in heaven. Because your our God. We are a flower blooming in your hands of Jesus Christ. Dear God thank you for our song. Thank you for listening to it. 

AMEN!!!

We are flower blooming for you. Now you can make what you wanted it to be. And we can help you with anything you want us to do. And WE are a flower blooming in your hands. 

Fire from the ocean 

Lord we come and praise you. And we are going to sing to you. Where we go. Oh lord we come from a fire in the ocean. You died for our sins that we made. Ohhohoh (repeat). We come for the fire in the ocean. And you washed our faith and made it new. We praise you with our heart, with our mind, with our soul, and strength. We love you with our heart. Yeah. Oh lord we come from a fire in the ocean. Hallelujah. Praise the lord. Say it loud so he can hear you. We come from a fire in the ocean. We will for real to come with you to heaven (repeat). We are a fire in the ocean. 

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It could happen to any of us

I had a topic about closing chapters in your life that I was going to talk about tonight. Something happened today that I think needs to be talked about more. 
Our kiddos. We all have those moments/days where we want to pull our hair out because we just cannot make it one more minute with them. We all have those days when we look at our children and ask God how we got so lucky to have been given such an amazing child. Then there are the days where we don’t think about either one of those things. 

You hear on the news about horrible things happening to children and for that moment, you appreciate yours just a little bit more. Even may hug them a little tighter that night. 
We take our children for granted most of the time. I think most of us always have it in the back of our minds that those bad things won’t happen to our children. On any day at any moment, it can and will. 
Today was our day. 
One of our kiddos went missing after school. No one could find him. His teachers started looking in every unlocked room in the school. Looked all over the playground. He wasn’t there. One of his teachers even got in her car and went driving around looking for him. Time was ticking and the staff thought that the police needed to be called in order to help look for him. She printed off his yearbook picture along with our phone numbers, the schools number, and a description of what he was wearing today. Mister was on his way up to the school when he found out the police were getting involved. While all this was going on two of our friends where helping. One was helping to look around the school and the other went to our house to look for him. Once the officer arrived he collected the fliers and waited for mister to arrive. While we were waiting my friend pulled up with our kiddo in her car, she had found him! Thank God for her and for finding him! Our kiddo didn’t see me right away after school and decided to walk home. This is unlike him so I didn’t think that’s what happened. He was safe so the details didn’t matter to me. 
There will be days when he will still drive me up the wall and I’ll want to hang him by his toes. There will be days where I’ll still take him for granted. I will try my best to not take any of my kiddos for granted anymore. This had to have been one of the scariest moments of my life. Not knowing where my child was, who had him, and what was happening to him. Those thoughts take a mind of their own when something like this happens. Make an effort to back up and chill. Look at your child and just be thankful. That child could be taken from you at any moment….and it doesn’t matter how good of a parent you think you are. Love those kiddos more today than you did yesterday. Put down those walls and love them like there is no tomorrow.

Written on 10/16/15

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Rethink before reacting 

Before reacting to something we hear or see, we need to step back and make sure we aren’t creating a bigger issue by opening our mouth. Most of the time our intentions are to just clear the air or make sure someone is ok but sometimes we create a bigger issue and more drama than anything. We should stop and make sure what our motives are for wanting to tell this information. Once we figure that part out then we should take the responsible steps to correct any issue or rumor or disagreement we have. Sometimes nothing is needed to be said and that’s ok. Sometimes we just need to talk the individual. And sometimes we just need to take what we hear/see with a grain of salt. 
This is coming from my own personal experience. We all mess up sometimes and that’s ok. All we can do is apologize, ask for forgiveness, and move forward. Even though life does come with its own instruction manual….I still mess up and need to regroup. Thank God for grace!!!

Written on 10/15/15

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My Momma Heart

Oh is my Mama heart hurting big time tonight!
We’ve all been there on those days when we are telling our kiddos to pick up their rooms. Sometimes you have to go in there and tell them to stop fighting and/or playing around. Work as a team to get their room cleaned up. 
Oh and how many threats we pull out to get them to do these things! More than 90% of those threats have just been smoke up their rear ends I’m sure! I know because I use empty threats all the time. 
Today was a day that my threat wasn’t empty. Today was a day that I actually followed through with what I said I was going to do. Today was a day that my Mama heart broke. 
I heard the boys playing and fighting in their room again after going in there several times, telling them to stop, and threatening to throw whatever was on the floor that belonged to them away. Two of my boys didn’t take me seriously. One of those boys had to throw his own stuff away. The other boy didn’t want to listen (again) so I had to bring the trash can in his room myself and throw it away as he’s screaming at me that he wants his stuff and asking for another chance. That’s same boy continues his tantrum and decides to take his homework out of his binder, erase all his homework that he spent his afternoon completing, and scribble all over it. I then decided to write his teacher a note over the scribble and tell her to not allow him to get another sheet and that there are consequences for his actions and the grade he gets is one of them. 
As I was watching my son who had to throw his own things away carry his belongings outside and dump them in our big green trash can outside and watching him cry made me want to sneak outside while he was sleeping and take it all out. My other son is also very upset about his things being thrown away. When he realized he wasn’t going to be able to redo his homework, he became even more upset because he was going to get a life skills mark. 
As I’m writing this one of these sons keeps going into our bedroom begging to have one more chance and that he’ll even get his brothers things out of the green trash can if I do give him this last chance. As much as I want to (and I really do want to) give both of my boys another chance, I cannot. I have to stand firm and follow through with what I said I was going to do. If I’m not willing to follow through with my threats, then I shouldn’t make them in the first place. I had to explain to them that if I didn’t love and care for them, then I would’ve continued to allow them to misbehave, be rude, disrespectful, and disobedient towards me. But because I love them I had to do this. 
How many times has God had to take something away from me because I just wouldn’t listen? How many chances is God willing to give me before He must put His foot down? As much as it breaks my heart…man, I can only imagine how it breaks His. I’ve asked so many times for things to be different or to have something back that was taken from me. But if I would’ve gotten what I asked for them I wouldn’t have learned what I did and wouldn’t have realized that because He takes He really does love me. 
So Mamas out there…showing your children consequences isn’t unloving or mean but a must to show them your position & to be taken seriously. Just make sure that you are ready to follow through with whatever threat you give them….no matter how much you don’t want to or how much it hurts. 
Press on Mamas…..tomorrow is another day to show more love and grace.

Written on 09/29/15

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Sidekick update

Well it’s been a week since I had my genius idea and I’d say it’s working out pretty good! Last week was easier than this current week simply because we didn’t have anywhere to be. I’m glad that I’m having to figure out how to get what I need done while it’s still summer though. Good practice! 

I highlight what I get accomplished from my list. Last week was bright yellow!

  
 This week….I have a few yellow dots. 

  
Again, I’m learning to be ok with that. I just try and move whatever I didn’t accomplish to the next day. Laundry is something that I’m trying to get done no matter what else is going on that day. I do 2 loads a day, 6 days a week, so laundry is definitely something that I cannot get behind on! Has long has its been washed and dried then I’m ok with that. My goal is to actually have it put away and then I mark it has being finished. 

Anyway, this post isn’t about laundry! 

I’m really liking that everything is all there. I don’t have a notebook for a shopping list, chores, phone calls, and whatever else. It’s all in one and makes toting it around much easier. I’ve already started writing down ideas for what my next sidekick will contain. I will start putting it together in December to get ready for the new year and so that it will coincide with my 2016 planner. 

Overall it’s working out great! I’m glad that the idea came to me and I didn’t push it aside. I go to bed feeling good about what was accomplished and, most, mornings I don’t wake up with all this weight on my shoulders filled with lists and to dos and all that jazz. 

I’m excited and looking forward to continuing this new habit and putting together one for 2016! Cannot wait to update and show you!

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Meal planning…long overdue update

Well, I think it’s been about a year (or close to) that I started posting about my meal planning routine. I don’t even remember what I talked about or what that routine was. 

Since starting my MP sidekick and seeing that we weren’t planning our meals very well (again), I knew it was time to start putting effort into this again. The only thing I forgot to do was keep track of the budget. I’ll be sure to do that for he next time. 

Since its summer time, I’m now having to include breakfasts and lunches into my planning. I like variety so I knew we couldn’t just have cereal or sandwiches all the time, boooooring! We do have these but it’s not on an every day basis. 

I have 9 breakfast items and 5 lunch items that I just in rotation. There’s no reason that I need to become a Pinterest mom for these meals. They are fed and that’s all that matters. 

Dinner is where I will try need recipes or something that we haven’t had in awhile. Dinner is where we are choosing to not do a rotation. Mister and I have decided that we don’t want to get burned out for these meals. For some reason breakfast and lunch doesn’t bother us, it’s just dinner where we don’t want the same thing over and over again. 

I plan out meals two weeks in advance. I shop a week at a time and buy any produce we may need the day before we will use it. We waste too much money buying the produce before we need it and it ends up going bad and is having to buy it again. That’s frustrating and is dipping into our budget that we, honestly, cannot afford to keep doing. Now I just have to remember to make a habit out of checking for the produce items the day before. 

Here is what my meal planning looks like:

   

First I feel the need to say that the meal doesn’t have to be on the date it’s written for. This used to be the way it had to be! I would get upset and start to panic a bit (sounds so silly when I say it out loud) when the meal wasn’t made on the date that it was written for. As much as it still drives me crazy, I don’t freak out about it if I have to move meals around. 

The highlighted meals are the ones we’ve eaten. That’s just so I can keep track of the food and meals. 

When I write out the shopping list, I just go meal by meal. If I need more than one of something, I try not to write it twice but instead do this: bread x4. That way when I go to the aisle this item is in, I don’t have to scan the whole list, I can just look to see how many I need. 

So far this is working for me. Keep in mind I’ve only been doing this for a week. I really want to keep it up and make this out normal instead of trying new technic and new technic……ain’t nobody got time for that!

I figured I would update after a week and I think I’ll do another update after I’ve been doing this for a month. Next time though I will include the budget, if I can remember 😜

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No yelling: Day 4 – now

So I obviously didn’t do a very good job of blogging the week that I wasn’t going to yell. I also didn’t do a very good job of not yelling. I have yelled every day from the first post until now. I don’t know how to not yell. I get to point where talking doesn’t work. I’m tired of being given respect by my kids. I can and will only take so much before I have hit my limit.

I have, however, stopped myself in some moments and just began to talk in a normal voice. That doesn’t happen very often but I’m glad when it does. It helps me calm down and I’m sure they enjoy it more when I’m just talking vs yelling. I wish I could do that every time. I wish I wasnt a yeller. Again, I don’t know how to not yell. Maybe one day I wont, I hope sooner than later.

I know the area in which I need to work on. It’s the ‘in the moment’ moments that I’m terrible at. I can tell myself all day long what I need to do but when I am in the middle of those moments, it all goes out the window. I always fall back into the same cycle that I don’t want to be in…..the crazy cycle!

I will break this cycle and beat it. I don’t when or what will be the magic ingredient but I will!

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#365daysofthanks – 2/365

Today is January 2nd.

I was actually struggling to find something to be thankful for all day. It just wasn’t a very good day here in our house. We had moments but overall, I’m glad it’s bed time.

I was originally going to say that I was thankful for the rain we are getting today. We live in Texas and are currently in a severe drought, stage 5 to be exact. So when we get rain, everyone is thanking God for it.

Then I got to thinking that I really needed to look for something that might not be so obvious, something that wasn’t right in my face.

Everyone had had gone to bed and it was close to 9pm and still hadn’t found something to write about. And then I was playing with Emma, just her and I. And I looked in her eyes and thought, man am I so thankful for you!

(In case you are new or don’t remember, as I didn’t and had to go back and read it, here are my thoughts when I finding out I was pregnant with our 6th child)

I wasn’t always so excited that this baby would be here. I didn’t want this baby to be here. now when I look at her, I can’t imagine my life without her. She is only 5 months old and it feels like she’s been much longer than that and other times it feels like she just got here. The majority of the time (when I have those moments to reflect) it feels like she was always supposed to be here. And I know that she was in His plans the whole time. I love her so much it hurts sometimes. I cherish her a bit more than my other babies because I feel like she is my last baby. I probably won’t have these moments again. I know that I need to soak them up as much as I can.

I am so thankful for this baby that I cried about when I found out that I was pregnant with her and wished that God would give her to someone else (true story. I even told God who I wanted him to give my baby to). I am so glad He didn’t listen to  me. I’m so glad that He gave her to me. Emma will always be my baby and be my own personal proof that His plans are always better than mine.

 

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#365daysofthanks – 1/365

Today is January 1st, 2015. The first day (technically night as of right now) of a brand new year. Today starts 365 days of me saying what I’m thankful for for an entire year. I’m really hoping to complete this. I’ve started things before but have never finished it. I want to complete this! (Here is my original post of where this started)

Today I am thankful that I have started reading to my kiddos every night. We started on the first book of a series that no one had read before. We are now on book 4. Not only do I look forward to this time with them, my kiddos do also. My two year old will ask throughout the day “read?” I love that they are enjoying this.

I picked up about 3 books each for the kiddos at the library and told them that when they wanted to read them to do so. They’ve actually been doing it! I help B & C read their books and read Lily her books. I absolutely love reading and books! I have yet to have any interest in getting a nook or kindle. I love having a book in my hand. To turn the pages. To smell the pages of a new book. Those are things that I cannot get from a piece of plastic.

I am just thankful to have this time with them every night and that they are enjoying it as much as I am.