Weathering our Storms Together

Weathering our Storms Together

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Comfort is what is on my mind today, I jotted a few lines down below while I was considering what "comforted" me. Simple things that bring joy to my heart and contentment to my life There are things that are comforting to me that aren't sure or certain or even long-lasting, but I am thankful for none the less.

I think that it is important that we take the time to comfort those in unfortunate situations, those who are scared or in need. The human touch is powerful. God's touch is divine. I'm thankful for the "only a little while" blessings in my life, but I am most thankful for my salvation and how real it is. Ultimately, that's all that will matter. But while I am here...I want to pray often, forgive quickly, love deeply, and put my *faith* in the unfailing. Yesterday is gone, Tomorrow may not come, but we do have today......


The chiming of the church's bells,
the singing of old hymns;
Kittens basking in the sun,
Conversation with my friends.

Holding hands with my husband, dear,
Seeing my children sleep;
spending time with my parents,
a pasture of grazing sheep.

A kiss upon my cheek from the
children God gave to me;,
A rainbow after a storm,
The shadow of a big oak tree.

Cows munching in pastures green,
Wind chimes playing a tune;
The sound of mama's laughter,
Finding the face in the moon.

The smell of Daddy's work shop,
The sound of Pa calling the cattle;
Being held by Jarrod,
a thoughtful game of scrabble.

The sweet, woody smell of
Pa and Nanny's front door,
The purr of my orange cat;
The feel of my blankets
when I'm worn out flat.

The sound of my name said in prayer,
the knowing for sure that I will be *there*,
Not a maybe, or I think, or perhaps I will be...
But a *for certain* where I will spend my eternity...

Comfort here is fleeting, a moment, a wisp,
but salvation is the only comfort for the life after this......

Monday, October 11, 2010

A Legacy of Love

Several years ago, I was at my grandparent's house, Nanny B sent me to her bedroom to lay something on the dresser. As I was leaving something on Grandaddy's desk caught my eye.
I found a stack of papers with hand tracings on them. In each one was a trace of Grandaddy's hand and inside of his was a much smaller one. I leafed through them to find all seven of "us" there. Us being his grandchildren. It brought tears to my eyes. I asked him about it and he told me that when we were really little he would sit us on his knee and trace out our hands inside of his. He told me he looked at them every day and remembered something about each of us.
I pondered that later in the day while taking care of my then toddler and baby. I thought about what Grandaddy had done for all of us. Every summer we would go to work with him. He runs a laundry route and in Bowling Green and each of us would take at least one turn during the summer of driving around with him and "helping". Our day included laughs, breakfast and lunch out with him, screams as he pretended to be asleep driving, and *always* a stack of used laundry tickets to take home for play. He was the Grandaddy that made me brownies when I got off the bus at their place every now and then after school. Trips to the woods, to the pond, and an awesome fishing and hunting buddy for any of the grandkids that cared to go with him. I fondly remember family gatherings with his guitar perched on his knee as he belted out songs he made up about each of the grand children. Grandaddy's dear hunting friend was my OB/GYN and they both wept when two pregnancies ended sadly. Grandaddy didn't show up the day I had Sweet Son until my c-section was successfully over. When I was rolled into the operating room my Doc said, "he couldn't stand the pressure of this." :-) Truth is, Grandaddy hurt with us all....and rejoiced with us all. I've heard him pray, sing, comfort, guide, and correct....all with a heart full of love.
One of the best things about Grandaddy is Nanny. :-) He met her in a strawberry patch and waited the few years until she was "courting age". When I lay down at night, I'm laying on the bed bought with Grandaddy's war money. They married a few days before Grandaddy went to Korea. Nanny anxiously awaited his letters while at home with her parents. She tucked away the money that he sent and bought furniture for their home upon his return. Many Friday nights found me at Grandaddy and Nanny's house, Nanny would paint my fingernails as we watched Murder She Wrote.
Words cannot express how thankful I am for Grandaddy and Nanny to a part of my life. They are both older now, and a stroke has changed Grandaddy somewhat, but not so much as I cannot see the man I remember. This past Sunday I was blessed to be in church with my husband, kids, parents, Grandparents from both sides, and Jarrod's maternal Grandparents. My heart bubbled over that we could worship together. When Julia was saved this Spring, my parents, my grandparents, Jarrod's great aunt were there to experience it with us.
When I came into church Sunday morning Grandaddy gave me a hug and said, let me show you what I've kept in my pocket for as long as I have had it....he pulled out my Junior year picture on a key chain, then he said, "Every night, I flip it over and look at it before I go to sleep."
My heart turned as I hugged him, because as nature goes, we don't have as many years ahead as we do behind us as Grandfather and Grandaughter. ....but the Legacy will remain.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Talking Trash....

It's been a while since I have posted, it seems like my life has gotten crazy busy...and I don't know if I would have posted now except for my need to soap box a bit about something that I am noticing INCREASINGLY!!! I am horrified, mortified, chagrined and down right disgusted.

TALKING TRASH!!! I'm tellin' ya! It's everywhere, but it is most disturbing when it's children. We have such an awesome (rolls eyes) generation of parents who can't keep their language to a decent level, that our little ones (and I do mean little, many times by the age of 4) have a colorful, extensive vocabulary of offensive words. AND they use them... a lot.

Let me get one thing straight, I am not talking about **educating** your children, both of my kiddos had the basic anatomical parts down by first or second grade, with the **correct** term for each part. They were also accustomed to Bible readings with words that we deemed unfit for average conversation. I also didn't ban certain literature because of a "bad words". But I would toss a book (movie, poem, etc) in a second because of the craziness being labeled as "cool".

I am talking about TRASH, that's right folks, garbage, refuse, filth...all from the mouths of babes, tweens, and teens....all learned from (you guessed it) ....PARENTS and the filth they are allowed to view and hear.

Why, Why, Why?? are we doing this to our young people. I don't mean to be grouping them all, there are the exceptions, but I am getting overwhelmed at the number of plugged in, belly button showing, hip slung, cartilage pierced, tattooed, bust baring young mothers (and Dads) who are dragging around children who slowly morph into them. Dumping their kids at every turn to be with the new "flame"....all the while, a steady flow of "trash" streaming from their lips. And when their kids pick this's "cute". :-( ARGH!!!

I begin to feel like I'm weird, am I the only one who feels like this is craziness??? I know I'm not, but it's becoming such a trend that I'm very concerned.
My heart warms when I see parents who are taking their children to heart, trying to guide them decently in a world full of weird ideas. My heart warms even more when I see a young person choosing to take the high road where this filth is concerned. It IS NOT goody two shoes, holier than thou, or snooty...It's decency, which will take you farther than talking trash.

KUDOS to families who are making an effort to censor their viewing and listening material and their own language and actions. Decency grows STRONG KIDS!!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

When Something EVERYTHING Goes Wrong…….
Have you ever had one of those days (weeks, months?) when it seems like it’s one blooper after another. The kind of day for which the word BUMMER was invented? Oh yes, I’m sure you are familiar. Nearly for sure if you are a parent and down right CERTAIN if you homeschool.
If you are going to succeed (ahem…not go crazy) there’s only one thing to do:
I readily agree that the first way up is down on your knees, but there is still a responsibility on our shoulders. I have learned that the pleasantness of our day sometimes (not always!) depends upon how I react to certain situations. I have long since given up on getting bent out of sorts over spilled drinks, broken dishes, flooded toilets, ripped jeans, etc. (although I haven’t quite mastered this skill with perpetually messy rooms), because it has no positive effect. I have a long way to go, but I’ve come a very LONG way from my former (pre homeschooling days) self. If I join the drama circus things go down hill at a dizzying speed. If I react calmly, it’s usually contagious. Things calm down. If I give in to tears, anger, frustration, that’s definitely contagious. And there has been ( and will be) the times when “stuff” just gets the best of me , but RISING ABOVE definitely works. I make my self “rate” a problem ….how bad “really” is it? 0 being a nothing,nada, zilch (like a spilled drink, having to reschedule an appt. ) 10 being horrid (life threatening or sure death). MANY times I’m pulling a negative number out of the hat. Some things just don’t matter, conserve your energy for things that do.
My kids aren’t little anymore and we are well over our half way journey of homeschooling, with Sweet Son we’re hitting the home stretch. I have learned more from my kiddos than I think they have ever learned from me in those years. Recently I find myself overwhelmed with all that I have to do, places I have to go, papers to fill out, classes to teach and trying to get two very different children to their very different activities on top of teaching, cleaning, cooking, planning, shopping, volunteering, coaching, cajoling, encouraging, soothing, mustering, catering, calming, doctoring, mentoring, juggling, …well you get the point. BUT…it’s nothing that other people don’t do (and often times LESS) every day. I’ve always been a doer, and very stubborn….my mom politely calls it determined and persistent. I’ve never been one to turn away from the truth, but to hit it head on and do what I can to solve problems….I’m a bit nervous about facing these new (scary, emotional, hectic, frustrating, hair raising, teeth gritting, door slamming, foot stomping, eye rolling) teen and tween years. I tell my kiddos that just as they’ve never been this age before I’ve never parented this age before…..I’m not READY for it! But, I think I can RISE ABOVE any given situation at hand (please understand I mean every day normal situation and not situations that rank in the 8-10 area) to give my home a bit of peace. I’ll be ready to rise above by falling down on my knees for guidance……

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


Have you ever met the person that is *so* your friend when they need something from you? Or the person who is your friend to your face but not behind your back? Or the friend who couldn't keep the personal info told to them in confidence? Or maybe the friend who doesn't come through when you need them the most? Or you may have even met the friend who won't ask/tell something to you face to face, but is more than willing to go to someone else? Perhaps you've met the "needy" friend as well who just can't seem to get by without getting something from you on a regular basis? Or the friend that when you see their name on the caller ID you cringe, knowing it's a "favor request" since that is the only time they contact you? I'm using the word "friend" quite loosely here if you haven't guessed.....

I think we all have these types of people in our life, and if you let it, it can drag you down. The feeling of always having to live up to the person's needs and expectations....But what's on my mind is not these folks, but their polar opposites. TRUE FRIENDS

A TRUE FRIEND is a friend for life. Period. No matter the occasion or event. They don't cheat you, participate or encourage gossip about you or your loved ones. They don't dis you when your views aren't the same or you have differing opinions. They come through for you every time, they listen, they care. I think friends like these are few and far between in life. I have people in my life that I care about, love to talk to, enjoy hearing from and am happy every time I see them.....but not all are true friends.
I am a saved, born again, Heaven bound person, so my truest friend is my savior, Jesus Christ. He's all of these things and more importantly, he's my redeemer. And being the Awesome Savior he is, I think he provided people in our lives that make a profound difference. Those who immediately come to mind when you NEED someone to talk to, a shoulder to cry on, an unbiased ear...
A TRUE FRIENDSHIP doesn't change as the years pass, you pick up right where you left off, be it a couple of days passed, or a couple of decades. A TRUE FRIENDSHIP isn't hinged on phone conversations everyday, matching necklaces, or dinner invitations.....but on a connection for which there are no words, written explanations, or just expression, but that just IS.

TRUE FRIENDSHIP is a blessing......

Thursday, May 6, 2010


I am taking the time, out of necessity and love for my sanity, to reevaluate my goals. I am the person who LOVES to do lots of stuff. I especially like to help folks out. I think it's common, especially in today's society, for people to feel overwhelmed, too extended and like there aren't enough hours in a day. I don't want to be a person who becomes cranky and unkind over life's demands. Life does have many demands, but so many times demands aren't coming from life, but those around you and how you perceive requests and demands.....

As in one of my previous posts, I believe there are "seasons" in our lives, and I am trying to focus on what is important *now* in my life. I am also trying to come to grips with the fact I don't have to do everything anyone asks of me. I find myself fretting over what will happen if I turn them down. As if how well they "like" me depends on how much I do for them. This thought process has resulted in an overload. :-( Not good.

After Handsome Hubby and I got married, it was in our hearts to have children and for me to stay at home and actually be a mother to them and for them to be raised with us in our home and not dropped at a sitter or daycare every day. This isn't a slur to anyone who lives their lives this way, but simply what we felt was right, and best for children in general. I also wanted my parents to be "Pappaw and Granny" and not a babysitter or in the responsibility mode for my children on a regular basis. So we decided I would stay home. SO many people interpret that as *not working*. (cough, snort) I would get (and still do get) phone calls with folks saying, "well, I had to work all day, or ________ (fill in the blank with person) had to work all day." An unspoken dig at the fact that I was "not working". Initially I would just get aggravated, then I decided, that they meant no harm and just tried to over look it. Thinking they perhaps thought being at home every day equaled what they do on the weekend on a daily basis. Their bad for making assumptions of what my days are like without any facts. My bad for letting it get under my skin.

My purpose right now is faith, my family, and getting my kiddos through school. I am more than willing to help folks out along the way when I can, because I most certainly love to do that. I especially like helping the ones that don't ask for the help and those who are in great need of it.
However, Handsome Hubby, Sweet Son, and Dear Daughter have to be priority on my list. They are the ones God gave to me..,,

So, obviously my Goal isn't to get rich, (one income and homeschooling kinda states that fact), nor is it fame, but just being a responsible, content person. Giving my children opportunities to strengthen them into adults that will be able to handle the pressures of life in a responsible way is very important to myself and Handsome Hubby. Being the best I can be for my family and taking the time when I can to help others along the way. *AND* not letting someone pull a guilt trip on me when I can't do what they are asking, wanting, needing or demanding. Maybe that's not a goal, perhaps it's just priority. I shall not grow weary in well doing, but I also shall not over extend myself to the point that my *responsibilities* are being left at the end of my to do list.

What are your goals? Responsibilities? Are you letting someone "should" on you?? (you should do this, or you should do that?) Step back and take inventory...that's what I am trying to do...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Summer Break???

We're all so excited to be winding down our "school year"here at the Hawkins' house. Our 175 "required" days are in or nearly in and we are focusing on finishing lessons, books, and going over concepts that we may have had trouble with. Our acheivement testing is finished, club meetings will end in May, Speech will wind up in a month or so, required literature has been read, final reports will soon be put in the kids' portfolios, we're finishing up our final History unit study, and we're ready to plant flowers!
we're ready to hit the Summer learning season...I don't think I've met many homeschooling families who do the cold turkey thing in the summer....we take those few months to dig into more community service projects, life skills, science projects, SOKY fair entries, and working on more difficult math concepts. Still, it's a break from our normal book work. :-)

I like to use those days to hone in on the life skills the kids need. Let them help pay the bills, make the deposits at the bank, grocery shop, change the oil, mow the yard, cook dinner, baby sit, and other things they will be sure to use in their lives ahead. While Sweet Son and Dear Daughter do some of these things on a regular basis, I think it's really fun to "dig deeper", like letting them plan a menu, make a grocery list, and give them a budget to do the shopping on. Sure, it takes much more time than if I just did that stuff myself, but the lessons are invaluable!

We also look forward to some fun times, we like bonfires, bike rides, walks at Mammoth Cave, lemonade on the deck, yard sales, and the other three in my family also look forward to canoeing and fishing. :-)

Looking forward to the warm weather and the changes it brings..........

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Home School, School at Home, Home at School, etc.

Recently (and not so recently and in the future, I'm sure) I have been asked several (thousand, it seems) times , "How long are you going to homeschool?" The question is sometimes asked with genuine curiosity, other times with malice and doubt, but most of the times with an incredulous tone that smacks of "I can't believe you're doing this!". So, I am taking this post to address that question (because most of the time when I'm asked this question I don't give a legit answer). :-)

Ok, out with the bad side of me first, typically when I'm asked this question I want to answer with something like...1.) I don't know, really, but probably until they break their shackles and escape. or 2.) As long as they like staying home with me and watching the soaps.
I *don't* give these answers, I *do* mentally roll my eyes and huff.

When a family chooses to homeschool, for some reason, people assume liberties they might not otherwise take, or that I wouldn't take. I don't walk up to my church friends, acquaintances, etc and say, "Just exactly how long ARE you going to let your kid go to Public School?"

The age old comments are things like, "I would kill my kids if we had to spend every day with them." "How do you get them to listen to you?" "You're lucky you have this opportunity." "I'm not smart enough." "My children and I clash too much to homeschool." "Don't you worry about socialization?" "What about prom (sports, clubs, school bus, classroom, etc)" Most people are asking because they are ready to *pounce* on our ultra conservative decisions and out of the main stream life style and aren't really looking for my (or anyone else's) feelings/opinions or thoughts. In the first three or so years, I struggled to defend our position. Now, I just let them ramble and talk, it's much less stressful and somewhat amusing.

There is a certain person that I occasionally see that is bent on telling me what I need to do. I seriously doubt that she knows another homeschooling family as she was confused at the word "curriculum". I don't even know this person's name. This past week we had another run in with Lady-Knows-It-All. :-) We just let her talk. Perhaps she felt better after instructing me?

Ok, so anyway, I sincerely don't know how long we're going to homeschool....that's the answer! I didn't know when I started 8 1/2 years ago, and I don't know today. I take it year by year. If you asked my children this question they would be quick to tell you they are going to homeschool all the way through high school. No doubt about it. But I don't know the future anymore than the next person. Quite honestly, when we first started I couldn't imagine, from the farthermost stretch of my imagination, that we would still be on this road as Sweet Son is finishing his 8th grade year. I was told I could never make it, that my kids would be backward and unsocialized, wouldn't be prepared for the "real world" and that I would "soon tire" and be ready to send my kids off to school for the day. I, being very young, and looking up to the older people had serious seeds of doubt in my mind. But I was driven by a desire that came from our faith, and my knowing there had to be a better way than to hand my young children over to the State for most of their waking hours. Many folks don't agree with that, but that's the fabulous thing about the United States, we have freedom of choice in so many ways. We aren't bound to one idea.

Oh, and as for my kids being "unsocialized"....that's a hoot. That's all I'm going to say about that. :-)

So, here's to the parents I know that lovingly, willingly, and whole -heartedly give their minutes, hours, days, months and years to schooling their children at home, in the community, and in environments that encourage faith, family, accountability and a love for learning. For those who plan every unit study, lead fieldtrips, girl scout troops, drive to team meets, spend hours pouring over curriculum choices, plan thousands of crafts, volunteer to teach, work in your community and surround their children, daily, with the love of family....all for the conviction and not the cash. THAT's Home (car, hotel, dr.'s office, grocery store, church, outdoor, museum, community, and just about anywhere you can imagine!) Schooling!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


It's time for another LOVE and MARRIAGE post! I adore hearing how husbands and wives show their devotion and love to each other. In the past month I've heard how one husband washes the dishes every time she cooks, of one hubby buying his wife a piano and the lessons to go with it, how one wife got *the ultimate* washer and dryer set she had been wanting for years...SWEET!
It's nifty when you can see the give and take of a strong relationship.
I'm a nut for the small things....which I suppose is a good thing, because the *large* things aren't an option in our life right now. I say this with no malice, as we are consciously making a decision to keep me home, with our children, homeschooling them. My own Handsome Hubby thrills my heart when he holds my hand, pats my back, kisses my cheek, gives me an understanding look at the right time, etc. One of the things I appreciate MOST about Handsome Hubby is that he doesn't *down* me in any way. To his friends, family, our kids...ANYONE. He's such a great guy. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE HIM!!!
You know what? I was accustomed to this. My wonderful parents showed the same kind of affection. I have NEVER heard my Dad speak down of my Mom to anyone, OR comment on how attractive he thinks another female is (unless it is of course his daughter (ME!) or his granddaughters.) My parents routinely kissed, held hands, sat close, etc. They STILL do.
I am an advocate for strong, faithful, Godly marriages. I am also an advocate of abandoning television for this simple reason. We are continuously throwing images of infidelity to our children, with a big green check mark beside it. ARGH. Corruption!!!
This isn't rocket's just laziness and lack of self discipline....or something akin to it. Guys step up and be men...Women step down and be ladies.
I gladly embrace my feminine place in our life....For the love of Handsome Hubby!

The pic above is of the heart Handsome Hubby "stomped out" for me...

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Dear Daughter likes to dress up *Chester* who normally doesn't mind....

My Brother and his lovely wife....

Dear Daughter with her stuffed monkey from Grandad and Grandma....

Sweet Son and Adorable Nephew.....

Handsome Hubby....with his *SANTA* gifts. Hershey's and Coke replace cookies and milk this year...

My Wonderful Mama and Adorable Nephew.....they love each other much....

Another pic of Adorable Nephew and my Brother...

Neat Drama Class I sat in on at the Kentucky High School Drama Festival...

Kids hanging out at WKU while I was judging the Drama Festival....

Us girls all dressed up...

One of life's greatest kiddos....

NOTE: My Dear Daddy almost always makes an appearance on my blog pics, however, I couldn't find a Christmas pic where Daddy's eyes wasn't closed.... (unintentionally or otherwise) LOL

We're gearing up for the winding down ....thought I better post a few pics of our December events before we got busy on the next semester of school.
This Christmas we spent a lot of time with my parents and my brother, his wife, and their son. It has been so fun...kind of glad to see all of the running subside, though
Usually in January and February, I get way burned out with homeschooling...I'm tired, it' s cold, I'm wanting to do inside projects, etc....but we've come this far....
Sweet Son is doing most of his glasses with KY Virtual Online High not as much planning for him. He has a lot of work to do with his SKY academy (WKU speech team)..
I still teach and plan all of Julia's work at this point. She is *so* fun to teach.
I honestly figured at least one of my children would want to go to public school by this time in their lives. Neither onward we go.
I am looking forward to spring events......I am trying to get my house cleaned "out" and "up"...
Blessings to all for a wonderful new year!

About Me

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I'm a daughter of the King, the wife of a wonderful man, the mother to two caring, earthly children and two heavenly babes...