Yesterday was the first time EVER in the span of time that I’ve had children that I have EVER done back to school shopping!  Usually it stays hot here til WAY into fall and jeans seems pointless to buy and I have to admit, most of the time, the money is just not there to use on new clothes.

Last week I was told that this weekend was Tax Free weekend and normally I could really care less.  The $$ isn’t usually there anyway to do it, ehh…big deal. 

Now I KNOW that Austin has been growing like a weed lately, MUCH to his JOY, and that he is growing out of EVERYTHING, so he is definitely going to NEED clothes for school.  For the first couple of months at LEAST, he will be fine with the shorts that he has right now, although wearing much of them repeatedly.  BUT, I will check the money situation anyway….JUST to see.

I am an ENTIRE car payment AHEAD of schedule!  WOOHOOOO!!  Praise God and dance in the streets!  That gives me $100 I can safely use this weekend for clothes for him!  YAY!!! 

And then I woke up yesterday morning to discover that my stupid monitor has bit the dust.  It won’t even turn on at all.  Nothing.  Pure blackness.  GRRRRRR!!!!  And….WOW, isn’t my house a little WARM too???   I KNOW it’s 1,000 degrees outside, but REALLY, should it be 80 in the house at 9 in the morning??  Great.  Just about the time I think we’ll be alright.

Lord, help me this morning…I can’t handle it all…..

Air conditioner:  Spray it out.  Your Dad taught you well….remember his knowledge.  He even SHOWED you how to do it….

Out I go at 9 in the morning, still in my jammies to check the air conditioner.  Sure enough!  It’s CAKED with stuff!  Come to find out, our dryer vent comes out right by the only remaining working air conditioner (we have 2 and one is broken) and it shoots out lint all into the air conditioner!  And I changed the vent as well.  Now it shoots out in the OPPOSITE direction away from it.

Monitor is gonna be a tougher fix….they are not cheap.  But I asked Mike and he was going to replace the money back into the savings that we used for the room air conditioner in the dining room and instead, he said I could use that for the new monitor.  OK, the conversation did NOT go that smoothly, trust me.  But we’ll leave out the actual words said.  Sometimes we are grouchy, especially with money.  :WINK:  On the DOWN side though, the monitor is NOT what I needed and sadly, I’ll have to get another one.  It makes for a WONDERFUL tv or watching movies, or playing games on, but sadly, it’s HORRID for editing photos and that is what I mainly use the computer for:  my “business”.  So I’ll have to save up to buy a new monitor that is GOOD for editing on.  Because this is NOT going to work at all.  And now I feel terrible that we spent so much for something that isn’t even going to work.   But Mike is really happy to have a TV in his office.  LOL 

AND then, we finally made it out to do our shopping.  I found some amazing deals on jeans for Austin, and even Chandler found some he will consent to wear!  Austin likes BUTTONS, no snaps.  Chandler has to have SNAPS, no buttons.  <sigh> Parenting is so fun sometimes.  So I was able to get Austin 3 pairs of jeans, a new shirt, and Chandler has 1 pair of jeans, a new shirt and BOTH boys consented to a pair of nicer, dress shorts for church!  PRAISE GOD ALMIGHTY!!!  I didn’t see THAT coming!  LOL  So for now, they are definitely set for school, at least for now.

We talked about characteristics of God this morning in Sunday School and it’s funny the different views of God that people have.  And my view of God has always been GOOD, but you only go to Him when things go REALLY wrong.  Not everyday and not for the everyday stuff…..and that is so terribly WRONG. 

God is that perfect parent!  In my own humble opinion…He is that perfect balance of love and discipline, the Giver of good things, the Witholder of things we don’t really want or need.  My view of God is so different the closer and closer I get to Him. 

Like any parent, I can go to Him for anything, not just over the MAJOR things, even the minor.  With my Mother, growing up, I didn’t just go to her when things went really wrong, I went to her for everything:  for wisdom, for comfort, for companionship, for FUN!  And God is the same way!  I can climb up in His lap and tell Him, “I can’t handle this….” “I’m confused” “Lord this is too MUCH” “Lord, what do I do?” “Lord the stupid air conditioner…” “Lord, Austin needs clothes…” etc etc etc  He is the ONE person that I can ALWAYS go to for everything, and He listens to me.  He is always present.

Even when I’ve done wrong, like gossip, that’s my big downfall that I’ve been working on, even when I’ve done wrong and shared that juicy bit of gossip with someone, like my Mom, I can go to Him and apologize and make things right.  He isn’t going to turn His back on me and leave me!  I can’t imagine anything my kids could do to make me stop loving them and when I look at God the same way, I am humbled to know He feels the same way.  “Lord, I picked up the phone today to share gossip with my Mom, I know it was wrong, and I’m sorry.  Please help me to do better.”  And He HEARS me, and He FORGIVES me, and we’re alright! 

AND, not only does He hear ME, but He hears everyone else as well.  I love the Bible.  Seriously love reading it now!  And I LOVE to read that God loved us even BEFORE we knew HIM!  He loved us when we were still horrid sinners.  He DIED for us, because He knew we needed help.  That’s freakin AWESOME!  Gosh, I could go on and on….but think about that:  if you are too embarrassed to go to God because you’ve sinned and there’s just too much stuff now blocking the way, God’s already seen it, and He’s right there and He’s WAITING for you!  He loves us as that perfect Parent and He’s waiting to forgive us!  Doesn’t matter what it is, He’s waiting.  And He’s waiting to shower you with all the love that you can ever imagine! 

And that’s an INCREDIBLE feeling!  I’m GROWING!

And that is the other thing I’ve grown in….I opened up Brooklyn’s room as a make-shift indoor studio because the lighting is FANTASTIC in there!  So I’ve been practicing like a MADWOMAN this week!  I am finally understanding some things and they are FINALLY clicking with me!  I am SO terribly excited to keep up the practice and hopefully one day, make some MONEY doing this!  LOL  That new monitor couldn’t come FAST ENOUGH!

Lord….I need a perfect monitor……