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Yesterday we had what I affectionately call an “allergy adventure”.

It involved a couple of firsts for us.

First use of an epi pen.

Followed shortly by first trip in an ambulance for Evangeline.

Today I phoned my fabulous allergy nurse.  She has been a source not only of great wisdom and information but great encouragement.  After walking through what happened yesterday she encouraged me as a mother, as an allergy mother.  Well done, she said.  You did the right thing.  You were awesome.

It did my heart good.

Yet at the same time, I knew I had done the right thing and handled the situation in all the right ways.

We have walked through in our heads and in conversations and in the numerous allergy talks that I have given at school about keeping our friends safe what to do if it was a bad reaction.  The check list was front and centre in my mind.  In my head I had made the decisions already.  I had put myself in the situation in my imagination.

When push came to shove I was made for this.  I was ready.

It’s hard to say that.  And I hope it doesnt come across as a #humblebrag but I was made for this.

I was prepared.

What crisis are you prepared for?

What conversations do you have to have with yourself to be ready?

What decision do you have to make before the moment arrived?

For me the decision to administer the epi pen was easy because I knew the signs and I knew the consequences both good and bad.  Once the boxes were ticked in my mental list the decision was made.  I was prepared.  Ready.  Decided.

Are you ready?

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Happy  New Year from my family to yours!

Praying 2015 is a year of adventure, blessing and joy for you all!

Stunning Sparkly Gown- Photo via Clara Richardson via Snippet and Ink

“Marriage isn’t about finding the right person. It’s about becoming the right person.”

If you ask anyone who is married for advice on marriage you’ll get a multitude of answers and responses, because everyone is unique and their experience and practice of marriage is so different and personal.

So this is my list and helps me shape the marriage I am in.

1. Marriage is God’s tool to refine us

Real love is an unconditional commitment to an imperfect person.  We are all sinners, forgiven by grace and growing to be more like Christ.  God intentionally and on purposes refines and sanctifies us through difficult situations and circumstances, like gold in a fire.  

Read the rest of this entry »

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Evangeline came home from school today and nuzzled into my side and said in a small voice… this was the worst day ever….

I held her close for a moment and then asked, honey, what happened.

they made fun of my name Mum, they called me Evil Eva…

Oh.

Words can crush cant they.

They hurt.

I got her to look up at me, into my eyes.

Remember sweetheart, when you were one day old, when God said YOU ARE DELIGHTFUL…?

Yes, I remember

That is who you are Evangeline.  You are not evil.   You are delightful.   Your name means giver of life, messenger of good news.

I know Mum.  They kept on saying it. It was hard but I kept on ignoring them.

Whose voice do you need to listen to sweetheart?

God’s voice and your voice.

Such rich truth from such a young one.  My girl is 9.  She is delightful.   She is wise.

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In the past month I have been reminded that parenting can be a war sometimes. Hopefully that doesn’t come across as disrespectful to those who live in actual real war zones with bombs, horror and death. I hope you hear the intention behind my words, my heart. There are seasons where it seems that our kids have been possessed by zombies or hormones or both.

Relax, this is normal. Seriously.

Our kids will push the boundaries. They will stretch out to find out who they are and discover their own independence. Unfortunately our toddlers and teens usually don’t have tact or grace in their methodology. It’s all on. Loud and inelegant. Awkward and brash. It can be hurtful and feel intensely personal. It can feel like the world around you is disintegrating into a mess of broken hearts and slamming doors.

Just as in a legitimate war zone it’s important as a parent to have a plan and tactical responses to skirmishes and trouble so that you are prepared and equipped. We want to do more than survive. The goal is to thrive. Even under pressure.

 

Come read the rest over at NEW ZEALAND CHRISTIAN MUM – where i was a contributing writer earlier this week

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our delightful girl turns 9 today.  

delightful is the word that God used to describe her and prophecy about her when she was a day old.  it is the word she is.

she adores ballet, frozen, lego, rugby and Jesus.

she convinced me to become a bible in schools teacher because she told me her classmates needed to know about God’s love.

she devours books and strawberries.

she is tenacious, spunky, kind and yes, delightful.

she is my heart.

 

 

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bathroom #DIY wood mirror with shims

The Problem With The Child-Centered Home – WE ARE THAT FAMILY

I’m not a stranger to a child-centered home. For years, we let our kids determine restaurants we ate at, we gave them ample choices, we backed down from consequences, we centered our lives around their extracurricular activities, we added fun kid stuff to every weekend so they wouldn’t be bored, and when they asked us what they were supposed to do for fun, we told them. Some days, we still reap the effects of it. And then, a few years ago, we started to shift to a Jesus-centered home. Instead of child worship, where we bowed to every whim and demand from our kids, we refocused and prioritized our lives. My children didn’t stop being important. We didn’t stop loving them unconditionally or stop meeting their needs. We just stopped trying to fix every problem and giving in to every desire.

 

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CREATING SACRED SPACE – William Matthews

Our World Has Become Overrun With Noise. Loud Noises, Soft Noises, White Noise, Static. There Is Visual Noise Everywhere As Well. On An Average Day You Are Consistently Being Sold And Marketed To Through Billboards, Store Front Signs, Television Commercials, Web Banners, Etc. Companies And Corporations Spend Billions Of Dollars Annually Toward Marketing And Advertising Some “New Must Have Product” That Will Make Your Life A Million Times Easier. And Though We Are Promised Happiness We Often Are Left Wanting, Aching All The More For Something True, Something Real, Something Sacred.

Sacred
\’Sa-Kred\
A : Dedicated Or Set Apart For The Service Or Worship
B : Relating To Religion : Not Profane : Holy
C : Entitled To Reverence, Respect, Awe

Usually When We Think Of Sacred In The 21st Century We Often Think Back To Ancient Relics, Rituals And Rites Seen And Carried Out By Some Catholic, Anglican Or Jewish Orthodox Tradition. But Those Practices Are Simply Physical Representations Of Spiritual Realities That Are Found In The Heart Of All Believers. Every Believer Is A Priest Who Can Minister To God, Every Believer Is A Guardian Of The Inner Fire, And Every Believer Is A Keeper Of A Sacred Heart. What It Boils Down To Is This, People Who Embrace The Sacred Are Given Completely Over To God In Word Thought And Deed. Sacred People See Themselves Set Apart As Holy Unto The Lord And Their Hearts Are Caught Up In The Reverence, Awe And Wonder Of God.

 

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5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Yell At Your Children

In the heat of the moment, you want to act. You want to solve the problem right NOW. If you wait, it will be too late, right? That feeling of urgency, though, is when you’re most likely to yell at your children. But that sense of urgency is actually sending us into a vicious cycle of more yelling and not actually solving the problem.

 

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broken together – Nate Pruitt

Therefore, our brokenness is a part of us, and it enables us to better empathize and understand the broken ones around us, to meet them with love, and offer what we have to offer.

 

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HOW TO BE MARRIED TO AN ENTREPRENEUR – John Morgan

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times…your environment has a huge impact on your success. Your spouse is a major part of your environment. It’s not easy being married to an entrepreneur. Your better half has to put up with the late nights, crazy ideas, and the constant checking of email.

As if marriage wasn’t hard enough, throw an entrepreneur into the mix and you’ve got some extra chaos to deal with. There’s no questioning how important it is for your spouse to support you. Without a doubt the person who’s had the biggest influence on my own success is my wife Brooke.

So who better to talk to you about the important role a spouse plays in an entrepreneurs life than my very own wife?

 

Ads on television make motherhood look so easy. The babies in them are so sweet, so soft, so snugly, so sleepy and the mothers… well, they look so beautiful, peaceful and together.

Reality however can paint such a different picture.

My life is not a commercial. Unless its one of those ones for washing powder and mud.
(yes thats my son, now 12, in the photo!)

Read MORE about The Antidote to Anxiety over at New Zealand Christian Mums – where I’m a contributing writer today

haha i need to remember this when i'm having a moment

It’s been one of those weeks.  Challenging.  Exhausting.  Emotional.  Rich.

Requiring grace, hope, communication, and lots of wisdom. 

My mantra has being BAD MOMENTS DONT MAKE BAD MOTHERS and i have clung to that truth like a life-raft in the crazy storm of stubbornness and boundary crashing.

I wrote about what I am learning over at New Zealand Christian Mum – come read about surviving motherhood and MOTHERHOOD MOMENTS here

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this is the youth group i got saved in, 20 years on.  we met again and celebrated our friends 20th wedding anniversary over the school holidays in napier.  20 years is a long time.  some of these people i have reconnected with in real life over the years, but some of them, it had been the full 20 year quota of time between conversation.   but throw us back together and it was like no time had passed.  it was glorious.  here we are with our spouses and kids, changed and living our dreams, yet it was like no time had been between us.  it was glorious.

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