Living not striving…

Random thoughts and daily adventures in my life

Seasons…shifting, seashells and surfing September 2, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — erikaivory @ 4:22 am
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I’m in the mood to put down some of my random thoughts. So this is your warning that this post is full of randomness:)

I am finally old enough to begin to appreciate seasons and the predictability of some of the things they bring.  Fall brings cooler weather (eventually), school days, stricter schedules (heaven help us), football, Halloween, pumpkin spice lattes and did I mention football?

I have to admit though that it is hard to not be sad waving goodbye to sweet summer:(  It was a good one for the Chapman clan!  We had so many fun days like this:

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There is no place I would rather be!

And celebrating with friends like this…ImageAnd enjoying road trips…

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And I loved my leisurely mornings…

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And the end of summer means saying an extended “see ya later” to these BFFs:(…

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And got into mischief like this…who knew pecan juice from unripened pecans would stain hands and faces for almost two weeks?…not this girl!

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We enjoyed lots of stay-up-late fun family times…

ImageBUT just as certainly as summer was A MA AZING…there is a purpose for this next season too.

There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens: Ecclesiastes 3:1

I know this is Truth.  While we wait: we work, we live, we pray, we laugh, we praise, we grow, we serve and we beg God to fulfill His purpose in us during this season that we may bring HIM great glory!

Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws,
we wait for you;
your name and renown
are the desire of our hearts. Isaiah 26:8

So that is kind of where I’m at.  Last weekend Mark encouraged me to slip away on Saturday and spend the day on the beach.  I absolutely love to be there with my boys…but I also love to just sit and listen to the waves and dig my toes in the sand.  It truly is the place I feel closest to the Lord.  I found this great stretch of the beach where apparently everyone comes to surf.  There were about thirty people out there surfing.  From about 9 year olds to mid-20s.  But then there was one man, who had to be mid-fifties at least.  I watched him for the longest time.  He was loving it….and you could tell he really knew how to surf.  He was so good.  He would go pretty far out and straddle his board and just wait.  He was so content watching the horizon.  Apparently he would see a good wave coming from pretty far out and then he would just wait….patiently…he would shift slightly…waiting for just the right moment…and then the wave would catch him as he lay on his belly on his board and every time, just when it looked like it was too late, he would pop up to standing and ride the wave across and in.  It was so cool!  I took this picture of him in the white shirt facing the water and watching for the right wave…Image

That is how I want to be.  Trusting that the wave WILL come.  Ready, expectant, trusting and anticipating that what is coming is going to be good and exhilarating and maybe even the greatest ride of my life!  I need to be ready though and let it pick me up and just keep my balance while the Creator of the whole universe controls the wave and the ride.

One of my favorite, favorite things at the beach are the little different colored shells, a certain kind of tiny clam or bivalve/donax I guess, that dig themselves into the sand as the waves come in and out.  The boys and I usually collect them in a bucket with a little sand and water.  We love to collect them and compare all the beautiful colors and color combinations and then release them back into the water before we leave.  And I love how often in the late afternoon there seems to be just an abundance of them!  I was trying to take pictures of them with my phone and finally someone came up and asked me what in the world I was doing?! 🙂

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Can you tell how many there were?!  And that picture totally doesn’t do it justice.  I guess it just amazes me that the Lord made ALL of those seashells with such amazing colors, and detail and cared enough to create such beauty.  He numbers the sand on the seashore…and loves me intimately.  It amazes me…I suppose looking at those little shells that find life in the sand and looking out at the expanse of the massive ocean puts things into perspective for me:)  Sometimes I just need that.

Okay last randomness.  Read this quote by Beth Moore from her study on James this summer.  I’ve been chewing on it for about two months and I still have more to glean…hope you enjoy and thanks for reading!

“…the point is not just getting us into our proverbial lands of promise where we bear much fruit.  The point is developing the spiritual muscle on our way so once we receive it we are strong enough to keep it. The hardest part of possessing the land is defending it.  A person has hardly begun to have a real fight on her hands until she starts serving in her full-throttle effectiveness.  She who proves a threat earns an enemy you can bet will do everything he can to make her sorry.  Nothing in the visible realm is a greater reality than the unseen battle raging over our heads.”  Beth Moore pg 164

Hmmm…lots to ponder.  Praying we build some muscle in this season:)  You with me?

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Summer lovin’ August 1, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — erikaivory @ 1:23 am
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It has been FOREVER  since I have posted here.  This blog is supposed to be more about life with my boys, kind of a digital scrapbook…but I have been doing a lousy job.  My other blog (boy I sound like a blog nerd) www.everchangingchapmans.blogspot.com is supposed to be focused on the adoption journey.  I have kind of a one focus/obsessive personality so I have to really try hard to not be mentally and emotionally distracted by the “wait” and miss out on the fun and joy of living each day with my fellas:)

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So this summer has been fun….full of beach trips, lots of trips to the YMCA outside pool, dreaded afternoon reading time:), spending time with friends that are moving away:(, an archery class at Bass Pro Shops, growing our tomato plants and some time at the river with Nonny!

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I’ve also spent quite a bit of time researching and pouring over homeschool curriculum catalogs.  We are homeschooling McCall next year for sixth grade so it has been fun prepping for that.  We actually started school yesterday.  We are trying to get a jump on it so when things get hectic with Christmas we won’t have to stress.

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I LOVE summer time.  I love sleeping in and staying up late, eating lots of fruit because it is so hot nothing else sounds any good, I love going outside around eight o’clock when it is finally cooling off and just sitting outside until it gets dark.  I love buying ice cream in the afternoon after you sweat to death at the pool.  I love spending all day on the beach and driving home sticky, sandy and just a little bit sunburnt while the boys nod off during the long ride home.

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But at the same time, as bittersweet as the thought of fall and school is, I also love the anticipation of what is ahead.  Planning schedules, preparing for the next season.  We are all starting to miss a bit of normalcy whether we want to admit it or not.  I used to dread change…but I am hope I am finally maturing enough to look forward to whatever God has next for us around the bend.  This growing up stuff is hard!  Learning to revel in the now and soak in what is going on around me…while preparing myself for whatever is ahead and trusting God with the next unseen season.  Whew!! 

Glad we still have a couple more weeks to splash in the pool and explore some tidal pools:)  Regardless I praise Jesus for a sweet summer, for old and new friends, for lots of tomatoes and ice cream, no hurricanes (yet!), some time to read some good books and for beautiful sunshine on our faces and precious little boy hugs:)