Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Feeling the Bite

With the quickly rising gas prices and the prediction that it could be as high as $5.00 per gallon by the end of summer Dirk has suggested some adjustments at the ManyMeadows.

He is considering leaving his work truck at one of our rent houses in Oklahoma City and riding his motorcycle to get his truck each workday to save gas consumption.

We will not be mowing as often this year. Some of the orchard and other out-of-the-way areas will just get tall. (gas cans filled for the rider mower and the tractor tonight came up to $50…eek!)

I know some of you may have to make some adjustments of your own to off-set that rising gasoline expenditure.

What are some of your ideas and suggestions?

The price of gas is getting up there with the price of milk. Did you start buying less milk when the price went up?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Jump Off the Rollercoaster!

Is your life a roller coaster? Do you find yourself moving from one crisis to another, up, down, up, down?

Let’s look at Psalm 84:5-7

Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.

As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools.

They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.

God’s Word tells us that we can move from strength to strength. Even when there are valleys. Can you imagine? Strength to strength! Not high point to high point, but strength to strength.

As we go through this “pilgrimage” the Psalm even tells us that we will pass through the Valley of Baca (weeping) …ever been there? But, it also tells us that we can make that valley into a spring! You know, making lemonade out of lemons, making the best of every situation. Seeing that there is good somewhere past the hard times. Keeping our eyes on the One who is Strength. Seems like it’s a choice.

I don’t know about you, but I choose going from strength to strength.

How about you? Ready for a little less roller coaster life?

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Jon is Back!

The Tulsa airport was alive with anticipation on Saturday morning. Around 200 family members, Marine veterans, and friends of the 23 members of the 323rd Platoon, Jump Company Marine Reserve Unit from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma were returning from Iraq.

The children played, the wives chatted excitedly, and everyone anxiously watched the clock and the hallway leading from the American Airlines gate.

Finally, the airport security gave the thumbs-up. The plane had arrived! The civilian passengers departed first, making their way through the crowded waiting area. I overheard one man declare, "Wow! This makes me wish I were a Marine!"

Erin, Kaden, and Will were eagerly waiting at the edge of the "Do Not Enter" line leading to the security check area. I was poised with a ready camera.

And then, we saw them. Warriors, dressed in their Marine fatigues, standing tall, their presence filling the hallway as they made their way to cheers, smiles and tears. Mighty men, with a willingness to serve our country being welcomed home by those who support them, pray for them and love them.

"Daddy, are you ready to go home?"

Remember those who have now gone to replace this unit.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Friday Finds

Some of my girls….

Erin's husband, Jon and the rest of the 323rd Battlion, Jump Platoon Marines arrive Saturday at noon at the Tulsa airport! He called me this week---can't WAIT to see him! Again, thanks for your thoughts and prayers.

Next daughter, Ali starts work this weekend at Supercuts, 2nd and Bryant, in Edmond. Ali has been a stylist for 6 years. If you want one of the best haircuts EVER, ask for her on Saturdays or Sundays. Be sure to leave her a good tip!
3rd daughter, Anna is running in the OKC Memorial Marathon Sunday. She's running the 1/2 marathon (ONLY 13 miles!) Leave her a "blug" on her blog.


Youngest daughter, Katie is Employee of the Month at Edmond Medical Center. It’s a big deal, people! She even gets the special parking place. However, since she walks, not drives, to work, she's considering putting a lawn chair in her parking place as a claim on her special territory. ; )


Some of my other girls....

You’ve gotta see the cake we had at a recent family birthday bash! Abbi is amazing!!
My good friend and blog-bud, Cindy Beall is back on-line. See what happened to her this week!


We'll be at a wedding for a family friend tonight. Our granddaughter, Lily, is the “Flower Princess”, ( a name she chose and the bride is listing it in the program).

Your weekend?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Go Fly a Kite!

A couple of weeks ago, Dirk and I headed the motorcycle out to Lake Overholser in west Oklahoma City. We came upon a new park, Route 66 Park, located on the southwest side of the lake.

This park is a delight!

It’s worth the drive. Take a picnic and plan on spending a few hours. Take a kite. Take your roller blades or skateboards. (Come on, you know you want to). I’m looking into one of those new wave boards. Looks like FUN!
; -) There are large ponds and a really nice, big playground area.
Explore the Route 66 sidewalk at the south end of the park and you’ll feel like you did school for the day. It’s like an outdoor museum!

Whatever you decide to do there, make plans to go! You won’t be disappointed.
Have you been here? Are you going? Do you want a wave board too? ; )

What Do You Think?

"Attitude is a


Is it? Or not?

Your thoughts?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Lessons from Some Weeds

It’s spring! Time for me to head to the garden. It’s a passion of mine. I’m not great at it, but I do enjoy getting my hands in the dirt. And there are plenty of spiritual applications found in that garden of mine.

This year, on one of those early spring warmish days, I put on my gloves, went across the road (a short walk from home) ready to begin tilling, digging, spading, and making ready the soil for some early seed.

What I was met with was a big disappointment. The garden was covered in weeds. Dead weeds, but still weeds.

You see, last year, well… I just didn’t get back over to the garden during those hot, hot August/September days to remove the grass and weeds. And grass and weeds LOVE hot weather! I always meant to. It just didn’t happen.

It got me to thinking. Weeds are a lot like sin in our lives, particularly the sin of negligence.

Here are a few ways negligence has shown itself in my life:

That’s just the way I am.
Oh, it’s just a little thing, not that big of a deal.
I’ll work on that later.
I’ll get back to it soon.

And just as those weeds are strongholds in my garden, going to seed, creating more and more weeds this season, those sins of negligence take root in my heart. I get comfortable with them. I don’t notice them. I don’t deal with them.

Oh God. Reveal to us the sins of neglect that will consume us if we don’t wake up and allow you to reign fully in our hearts.

Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it. James 4:17 NLT

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Abortion Admission

OK –now that I’ve got your attention, I didn’t really go through with an abortion. But, for a fleeting (ok, more like a LONG) thought, I actually considered that I needed to get rid of the “problem” I knew I would be facing with another pregnancy.

It was 1985. (I know…you were 6 or not even born.) We had just built our house in the country: 3 bedrooms, 3 desks in the schoolroom, 3 kids-2 girls and a boy. (Erin was 7, Andrew was 4 and Ali was 1.) We were complete. I was satisfied with life.

I even remember having a conversation with a friend in California telling her that for the first time in my life, I felt really settled, complete, fulfilled.

And then, my period didn’t begin (sorry guys…) For me, that meant only one thing. I knew I was pregnant! Oh my! That didn’t fit my plans. We didn’t have enough desks! We didn’t need more kids. I didn’t want to be pregnant again!

For that moment, I thought, “I’ve got to do something about this. I’ve got to get rid of this.” It was a thought that came, and I knew in an instant, if I took control of that situation, it would make everything right again. It would put my life back into place, instead of the rocking, jarring thoughts that were slamming me. I wasn’t even thinking that there was a life growing inside me.

And just as quickly, I repented those thoughts, and knew I would never follow through with killing my own child.

But, what that quick experience taught me is compassion for those that do choose to abort their babies. If a young, single, scared girl or woman doesn’t have an understanding, Truth and love represented in her world, I can see how a she might choose to take things into her own hands. Chart the course of her future.

That experience changed me. It not only taught me compassion, but it set the stage for agreeing that my life was much better controlled by the One who knows what is best for me.

The baby was Anna Joy. The first of four more blessings that God added to the three we already had. I would have never chosen that life for myself!

I sure am glad I let Him lead.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Friday Finds

Good News, Bad News, Good News

Last week, as Erin was trying to keep up with information on Jon leaving Iraq, her computer wacked out. We knew a blogger friend, Michael, who is a computer superhero and Erin gave him a call. She took her computer to him and he had it up and running like new in only a few hours and then…….he delivered it to her! What a guy!! So, if you have some computer issues, contact Michael at oumike23 @ (no spaces). Here’s the deal. He’s a very generous guy….Be sure that if you connect with him to have him work his magic on your failing computer…..BLESS HIM GENEROUSLY! Don’t count on the “Erin special”, ; ) but I guarantee you he will do a super job, if he can, on your computer.
Star of Bethlehem flowers

Remember me backing into Dirk’s truck last week? Yeah…well, that little dent appraised at $794.…..oh, and my car will cost about the same. I’m still feeling like that one picture….
Check out Anna’s blog and click on the link to her magazine article (Am I Beautiful?) in Brio magazine. (right under her picture). It was written about three years ago, and published last year. You’ll enjoy it!
It’s the weekend! What will you be doing?

Update on Jon

Jon called Erin last night at 1:00am right when the plane landed in North Carolina! He told her it was cold there. When he left Iraq it was 110 degrees!!

He'll be undergoing several days of tests (hearing, etc), and demobilization (whatever that is). Currently it looks like he'll be home on the 26th. We're still hoping for sooner!

Erin has gotten to talk to him this morning again and said he sounds really good!

We're excited, can you tell??

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


I’ve known him since I was 15. He was a stud in our church youth group. I married him when I was 19. He’s still a stud! Today (the 17th) is my husband, Dirk’s birthday.

This man is quite amazing.

Here are a few things he has done in his life:

He is an ordained minister.
He graduated with a Sociology degree from Oklahoma Baptist University.
He helped birth our 7 children.
He built our home with a hand-held hammer, mostly by himself.
He has owned and operated his own successful business for 33 years
He has worked hard and allowed me to stay home with our children
He is a great money manager
He is an amazing grandpa to our six grands
He will do anything for anyone and does!
He loves completely
He is a man of integrity and consistency
He tells really corny jokes…that are very funny ; )
He makes me laugh
He’s taught me to lighten up and enjoy life
He is my mentor
He has helped shape me into the person I am today.

Do I make him sound perfect?

Well, he is…….. for me!

Happy birthday honey. I love you!!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


Erin heard that Jon's unit is in Ireland tonight. Even the Marines must endure customs! And theirs takes about 8 hours.

They should be leaving for the USA at about 7:30 am our time and arriving in North Carolina about 5:30 pm. YAY!!

Thanks so much for your prayers.

I'll let you know when he arrives in Oklahoma!

Monday, April 14, 2008


Pressed beyond measure and pressed to all lengths

Pressed so intensely, it seems beyond strength

Pressed in the body, and pressed in the soul

Pressed in the mind, till the dark surges roll

Pressure by foes, and pressure by friends

Pressure on pressure, till life nearly ends

Pressed into knowing no helper but God

Pressed into loving the staff and the rod

Pressed into liberty where nothing clings

Pressed into faith for impossible things

Pressed into living a life in the Lord

Pressed into living a Christ-life outpoured

When we are pressed ……what comes out?

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Learned from Experience

If you’ve ever spent any time with me, you’ve probably heard me offer the words, “Don’t be so hard on yourself.”

See? I know about this statement from first-hand experience. Oh, I know. There are those that just aren't hard on themselves. Maybe they have a lazy streak, or don’t have personal standards to achieve. Or maybe they’re just someone with a completely calm and easy-going personality and submissive nature. That’s not who I’m talking about.

You know who you are. You’re the over-achiever. You’re the one who has the bar raised pretty high, and when you get there, well, you move it even higher.

Here’s the deal. When we do that to ourselves…we also tend to apply that standard to others. Usually, to those we love most. (“It was pretty good, but it could have been better.”)

Are you that person?

If you recognize these tendencies in yourself, consider offering yourself some grace. If you’ll think about it, you may be reaching for heights that God hasn’t even asked of you.

So, take my advice…”Don’t be so hard on yourself”.

Receive some grace for yourself…then offer it to those around you.

Receive and experience the amazing grace of the Master, Jesus Christ, deep, deep within yourselves.
Phil. 4:23

Are you hard on yourself?

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Friday Finds

My youngest daughter, Katie, is a nursing student who works in the ER at a local hospital. Check out this post she wrote this week. May it challenge us all. "We're All Going to Die"

A new blog I came across this week. The Life and Times of Eric's Wife. Read this and decide if you're a Ninja Homemaker or know someone who is.


Craig Groeschel's posts this week on Brokenness are excellent. Read all four.

Jon is on the move, sort of. He's still in Iraq, but in a safer zone. We're still hoping he'll be back in the States by next week. Pray for Erin. The days seem really long right now!


Any big weekend plans?
Seen any good movies lately?

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Go Play!

I phoned my oldest daughter, Erin the other day. (Her husband is my son-in-love who is still in Iraq). Kaden, 4, answered her cell. Here’s the conversation:

Kaden: Hewwo?
Me: Hi Kaden. How are you doing today?
Kaden: Oh….good.
Me: Is your mama there?
Kaden: Yeah, but she can’t talk right now.
Me: Oh, really?
Kaden: She's in jail.
Me: Oh, I see. Well, can she talk on the phone while she’s in jail?
Kaden: No, she’s a pirate and she’s tied up, and has handcuffs.

Funny, huh?

The great thing is that Erin is playing with her boys. (Will is 2). And that’s not a natural thing for her to do. It’s something she has to make herself do, because I know there are many other things she might choose to do instead. She’s a lot like me.

Playing with my children is not something I was very good at doing. I’m glad to know that my girls are doing a much better job with their own children than I did.

So, take it from me. I wish I would have done better. Give up whatever it is you might rather be doing. Let them comb your hair, tie you up, and even put you in jail. It’s all about relationships!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

To Be or Not to Be

I’m such a “do-er”. I’m trying to learn more to simply “be”.

I don’t even know how to sit still. It’s hard to just “be” when you’re always up and running.

When I go to my mom’s house, I feel like I need to be doing something. You know, helping her. I’m thinking she’d rather me just sit with her. Talk with her. Just be.

I think that’s what God wants from me too. No, I’m pretty sure I know that’s what He wants. I think I’m helping. He just wants me to sit with Him. To be with Him.

I’m going to have to work on that…

Oops, there I go again!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Thou Shalt Not Covet Thy Neighbor’s...


You may not all have asparagus beds like I do---yeah, I’m bragging and rubbing it in, I know. The ManyMeadows LOVE, LOVE asparagus. (and this is one thing you’ll find where we’re selfish and won’t share...unless you come eat with us!)

Right now I’m picking a small handful each day and soon it will be even more than that. It goes immediately into a cupful of water.

Even if you purchase your asparagus, the best way to store it is to break the cut ends off and stick the spears into a cup or glass of water. Store them in the refrigerator for about a week.

Try cooking them covered in the microwave in about a Tablespoon of water just until tender crisp and bright green.

Try grilling them on a layer of foil drizzled with olive oil, coarse salt and fresh ground pepper.

We eat asparagus on pizza, throw it in a salad, put it on a veggie and dip platter, add it to pasta, and even in an omelet. Can you tell we like it? Yes, we do! Yum!

Sunday, April 06, 2008


I was backing this
And I was looking at this

When I should have been looking at this
And I did this
And this
It made me feel like this
even though Dirk assured me "things like that just happen", "those things can always be fixed". Note: I hit Dirk's truck!

There's a story in here somewhere about focusing on the wrong things...even the good things, and you see where it got me.

Oh, God, may our focus never be on anything but You.

I'm just glad I didn't back into this!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Friday Finds

If you've never read it you MUST read this blog, written by well-known blogger and homeschool mom. It is dated May, 2007. Hope you're encouraged as much as you're entertained. Read it here.
Kim's at it again...I just love this girl's creativity! Encourage your kiddos with these ideas.
Read it here.
Fun weekend plans? We help a couple celebrate their upcoming wedding with a couples "shower" tonight. I have to tell you......Dirk is very reluctant to attend since it's a shower. But, he's going to sacrifice since he loves the couple. Wonder what other word we could come up with that means the same thing but doesn't sound like a girl-thing? ; ) I think they used to call it a "pounding"...he said that sounds a little better.

Check out the progress of my lettuce. See Monday's post about growing it. If you go buy seed, go ahead and pick up some green bean seeds. We'll be working with those soon!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

What Do You Think?

“He’s right, even when he’s wrong.”

Your leader, your husband.

I’m not talking about sin, I’m talking leadership.

Your thoughts?

Fajitas for Fifteen

Last night Anna brought her Lifegroup out for fajitas, It was a noisy, lively group of twenty-something singles. We had a Meadows’ Mexican Dinner complete with plenty of guacamole and homemade salsa! Dirk and I stayed on the fringes, enjoying these young people and hoping they felt at-home. They ended the evening roasting marshmallows and singing while Kody played his guitar.

Many years ago, when Dirk built our home, we prayed that God would make it a place where people could feel love and acceptance. Over the years, that prayer has been honored. Our home has been a hang-out for many of our kids’ friends; a place where there’s always an open door. If our kids are not hanging out at home, they’ll be hanging out somewhere else. This is an opportunity to be part of their lives at an age where most kids are wanting to separate themselves from their parents. Opening your home requires an element of sacrifice, but one that’s well worth it.

Decide now that your home will be the hang-out location for your kids’ friends. You won’t be disappointed.

Where did you hang out as a teen? Was your home a hang-out place for you and your friends?