What’s in a name?

When I first started this blog I titled it “TreeHugginIsHard” because in 2010 I was working on becoming self-sufficient and I was teased by family and friends about becoming a tree-hugger. My goal for my family was to live off the land…Pioneer it up! I even started making “Little House” costumes…I know, a little overboard there! 

Well, guess what? Tree huggin’ IS hard!
Gardening-HARD!
Raising animals-HARD!
Working on the land-OMGOODNESS HARD!

What I found out though, life’s not only Tree-hugger-hippie hard, but it’s also Tree-hugging-Cling-to-the-old-rugged-cross hard.

A couple years after I started this blog, I was in a local Christian book store and I was looking at all the stuff by the check out counter and noticed a key-ring tab. On the front it said “I’m a tree-hugger”. Well, that got my attention right away…I was working relatively consistently on the blog at that time. I thought “I have to have this!”

I turned it over. On the back it said “I will cling to the old rugged cross”. I thought “Well, I like that song, I’m getting it”

I can’t remember how much it was. Christian stuff, it probably would have only cost a dollar if it said “Foxy Momma” or something worldly, but I’m pretty sure it was closer to $5…YES $5!!

It wasn’t until a few months ago when I ran across my keys (I may have possibly lost them for quite some time) and read it again. I’ve been thinking about that this evening.

1. On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,
the emblem of suffering and shame;
and I love that old cross where the dearest and best
for a world of lost sinners was slain.
Refrain:
So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
and exchange it some day for a crown.

2. O that old rugged cross, so despised by the world,
has a wondrous attraction for me;
for the dear Lamb of God left his glory above
to bear it to dark Calvary.
(Refrain)

3. In that old rugged cross, stained with blood so divine,
a wondrous beauty I see,
for ’twas on that old cross Jesus suffered and died,
to pardon and sanctify me.
(Refrain)

4. To that old rugged cross I will ever be true,
its shame and reproach gladly bear;
then he’ll call me some day to my home far away,
where his glory forever I’ll share.
(Refrain)

I called this blog “TreeHugginIsHard” originally as a hippy parody, but it truly has become an eye-opener to me on WHERE I stand with God.

Do I cherish the old rugged cross?
Does it still have that same attraction as when I was first saved?
Do I see the beauty in the cross or do I see MY burdens?
Am I true to the old rugged cross?
Am bearing the shame and reproach of the world gladly?
Do I really cling to the old rugged cross?

Lord, help me to remember my first love, help me to do my first works. Help me to have that same desire to see people saved as when I was first saved. When I realized in 2005 that I had allowed you in my life but hadn’t made you Lord of my life, when I wanted just enough of you to make things go smoothly, but not listen to the things you were saying, not allowing you to lead me in the ways you wanted me to go. Thank you for saving me, for giving me that chance, for being patient with me. Forgive me for not listening. Please be with me as I learn to live with the consequences of my actions, help me not to obsess over them daily. I know it will always be a thorn in my flesh, Lord, help me to draw closer to you during my moments of weakness and when all I can think about is having another baby. Help me to be thankful for the children you have given me. I love them dearly and I pray that my obsessing over a new baby has not hindered my raising them. I know that I was wrong in taking over that part of my life. You are in control and I should have known that, I should have realized that I wasn’t really holding the reins, you have had them all along, and that because of my choices, my life has went in a different, less perfect direction than you had planned for me. Help me not to think of MY burdens, but of your burdens. The pain of watching your children live the lives they do, adultery, drunkenness, lying, murder, homosexuality, a life of sin. One that you want them to come out of, not because you don’t want them to “do what they want” but because you love them and want to live a life of fellowship with them, to give them the very best that you have for them. Help me not to see that as a burden, help me to be bold and stand my ground for you. Help me not back down. Your word is right, it’s sharp and it cuts deep. I know that when your word is spoken that people will be offended. God, help them to turn to you and not be angry. You said that if we would lift up your name that all men would be drawn to you. Let your name bring them peace and comfort, don’t let them turn away. Don’t allow them to harden their hearts. Draw them unto you. Let them see you as their father, not as an enemy, open their eyes to you. Lord, help me to be all that you have me to be, let me be an example, a light on a hill. Let your love not be hidden in me. Let is shine to those that are lost, and give me the words to lead them to you. Lord, I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.

OK, well, I really didn’t mean to type all that, and I really thought about deleting it, but I guess God wants it posted!

Now that you have seen into my sordid life, pray for me. I have burdens that I need to LEAVE at the foot of the cross. Pray that I have the strength not to pick them up and try packing them around when God says “I got this”.

 

 

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Tree Hugger Update

I know it has been FOREVER since I posted last!

So here are some updates:

I started (with the whole family) a new eating lifestyle: Trim Healthy Mama
I have been on plan 1 year and 10 days and have lost 55 lbs…35 to go! (More on THM later!)

Since the last post, Gra-pa has passed away. He went peacefully in his sleep and he was ready to meet the Lord, can’t ask for much more than that! We all miss him, but he’s walking the Streets of Gold-with NO PAIN! Praise Jesus!

I had to make 2 quick trips to Florida to visit my Poppy, he found out in late January/early February he had Pancreatic cancer. I took the “Crew” down to see him while DH went to Oklahoma to perform a wedding ceremony for his cousin. It was a great visit and we got some good pics of the kiddos with Poppy.
The last week of May my Mom, sister and I flew back down to see him in the hospital for the last time. I was able to pray with him, something I had never been able to do. Before we had to fly back home, we went to see him and he looked me straight in the eye and said he was in God’s hands and he was ready to go.
I’m holding on to the hope that I will one day see Poppy in Heaven and he will be walking side by side with the dinosaurs he love studying so much!

The first weekend of August the Hubbs and I took off for Branson for our 17th anniversary. We loaded up the kiddos with junk and headed out for a weekend alone! (This RARELY happens-like once a year rare!)
When we came home late Monday night, DD2 was sick. She’d been sick off and on since May, but we blew it off and figured the summer heat was mostly to blame. She was doing a little better Tuesday, but still sleepy (and VERY grumpy!)
Wednesday she woke up with a headache so I gave her some ibuprophen and sent her back to bed, went grocery shopping and got home around 1:30. She was still in bed. I woke her up and she said she still had a headache and was starting to get a rash on her neck and chest. She had been training a horse and I figured she’d gotten into something, so I gave her Benadryl and more ibuprophen and sent her BACK to bed. I sent one of the other kiddos in around 5:30 to wake her up for church, when she came out the rash had spread to her arms and belly and was up on her face…I web-md’d her symptoms and the first thing I got was Lyme’s disease, next was another tick-borne illness, then some disease you only get in Third-World countries…
I debated taking her to Urgent Care, she had an appointment set up for the next day with her doctor anyway, but when the hubbs gets freaked out-we go immediately! So we get to urgent care-no fever (which is a sign of tick-born illness) and extreme headache-they send us to the ER said they needed blood-work results immediately and they didn’t have the capability to do that. So off to the ER we went.
You would think that when Urgent Care sends you over they would call and say “Hey we sent someone your way-they need to be seen ASAP”…they don’t!
After waiting 3 hours in the ER waiting room, someone finally comes and gets us, don’t bother with all the vitals, that was just done at Urgent Care, and took 9 vials of blood and sent it back for testing. We were starving, so we grabbed a couple bags of chips from the vending machine (they said that was fine, food doesn’t mess with tick-borne illnesses) and shared them. 12:00-labs are done so they put us back in the hallway (you would be surprised how busy the ER is on a Wednesday night!) with a little curtain around us and we waited…
1:30-more labs
2:30-ER doc comes in and says “Is your daughter diabetic?” I was like-uh-no-that would probably be in the file-don’t ya think…
I told him, no she wasn’t. He say’s I think we have our diagnosis…
He leaves, not saying anything, comes back 15 minutes later (after a tinkle test) and says “Your daughter has a blood sugar level of 363 (she had only eaten the chips all day) and is in Diabetic Ketoacidosis. She has Type 1 Diabetes. We are admitting her for at least 3 days and we are starting her on an insulin drip immediately”
By this time, I’m in zombie mode…I had been up 24 hours and had run almost non-stop since Friday, my phone was dead and my daughter was going to be admitted to the hospital. I really had no idea the severity of the situation (God protects my sanity that way!) so I was just going along thinking, they can fix this…I didn’t realize that when they said she was diabetic, they meant forever.
4:00-they get us in a room, Bail’s sleeping like a log, and I finally get a chance to get my charger out of the car and call the hubbs and tell him what’s going on and that we’ll be there a few days, so he better leave for work early so he can see us!

God knows what’s going to happen, to who, when and where…

Wednesday afternoon, on the way home from shopping I heard on the radio that 2 teens had been killed in our county in a freak car accident. Siblings, 15 and 17, the only 2 children in the family. I don’t want to leave this part out-they were good Christian kids. Ready to meet the Lord. It doesn’t make it a good situation, only a better one.

The only thing I could think of the whole time we spent in the hospital was-we can live with this. This isn’t terminal, it’s not cancer, she won’t have to do chemo, be deathly ill, loose her hair and possibly her life. She’s still ALIVE!

When Dr. Schwartz (who, in my opinion, has the best staff EVER!) came to visit, I was told that Bail should have been projectile vomiting or having seizures, he was surprised she was able to walk in. We got a lot of information in those 3 days! Learning how to give shots, I had to get one, so did the hubbs. We had to give Bail shots, test her glucose, write EVERYTHING down….and the hardest part-learn how to count carbs. 

Back to THM

I was told by several of the doctors/nurses that the only reason Bail’s blood sugar stayed stable as long as it had was the diet we were on. THM is a very low-glycemic (NOT low carb) diet. We spent 5 months non-THM learning what she could eat (which is whatever she wants!), how to dose for it, and what foods effect her more than others. I would suggest that anyone Type 1 not eat Twizzlers Pull-n-Peel! She ate 1-just 1-and dosed for it and it spiked her blood sugar to over 300!!! Chocolate is much better!

It is now January 9th, we have been on THM for 9 days and her blood sugar has stayed more stable than it has the last 5 months. And I’ve lost 5 lbs and 3 1/2 inches since the 2nd.
We went non-THM because it overwhelmed me trying to do S, E and FP along with counting carbs. (I’ll post more on THM in the next few weeks, along with my journey…this is supposed to be a “quick” update😉 ) And we were trying to conserve money by buying more sandwich stuff…cheaper foods etc. But what I’ve found out is-THM is the most cost effective way to eat. I can spend $300 on food (for a family of 7) and it last about 3 weeks compared to the $20-$40 I was spending every couple days “eating cheaper”.

I think that’s all I need to update on…

Until the next post….

(11)For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. (12)Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. (13)And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.         Jeremiah 29:11-13

 

 

 

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Politics

I’m not usually one for politics. I don’t know anything about it. I don’t know who is a Democrat and who is a Republican half the time. I personally believe that 99% of politicians are liars and will say whatever they think you want to hear to get elected.

BUT

There is one thing I do know!

GOD!

He is in control!

We may not have gotten the results we expected from this election, but God knew who we would choose. I have had so much scripture running through my head since I woke up and read Obama won.

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11 “But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.”

Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose.”

AND

2 Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

We need to truly have salvation! Jesus died for us if we live for him-we will live with him! All things, not some, all work for God’s glory. Maybe God is expecting us to humble ourselves-truly humble ourselves, and pray-truly pray, and TURN-truly TURN. We have become a nation of “Do what I say, not what I do” people. I know that I need to take heed to this scripture! Do I truly humble myself? Do I truly pray? Am I truly turning from my wicked ways?

Today and every day we need to check ourselves. Ask ourselves “Am I humbling myself?” “Am I praying?” AND “Am I turning from my wicked ways?”

 

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Another update on Gra-pa

Gra-pa is home and doing well! He spent just over a year in the hospital. WHEW!

He’s excited about being able to be in church again and out on his mower toodling around. He has to take it slow or he gets an upset stomach from all the jarring, but all in all, he’s doing good!

Continue to pray for him! He still has his TPN, which is his IV nutrition, and it could get infected and that would cause serious problems, and his immune system is still weak and coming up on flu season, we don’t want that either!

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Are you IN the game?

As I was waiting for some back ordered products to post this morning, I was killing time of Facebook, playing Angry Birds and chasing that elusive 1st place trophy. I noticed several of the girls with the company waiting on the products too. Some of us were on at midnight, some at 5 a.m. When all of the sudden…WHACK! I had one of those smack-ya-upside-the-head (an heart) moments. Here we are, a bunch of professing Christians, up at the midnight and pre-dawn hours waiting for…not something glorious…but a piece of metal.

What if we were up during those hours reading Gods word? Or praying for lost loved ones? Maybe praying for healing? Or how about praying for our country and its leaders? Um, I don’t know about you, but I think this country is about as far away from God as I’d like to see it get! But who’s fault is that? Is it the ones who want to live an alternative lifestyle because they were “born that way”? Maybe it’s the ones who want to have the right to decide what goes on in their body? No, I bet it’s the ones who enjoy alcohol and drugs so much that they’ll do anything they need to get their next drink or high!

But what if it’s not? What if it’s our fault? What if the Christians would take a stand with what they allow in their homes and in their churches? What if we were on our knees praying for our country and leaders? What if we were praying for those with alternative lifestyles, those who don’t know the precious life growing inside them is a gift from God, those who sell themselves and their family away for something to put in the hole that only the saving grace of Jesus Christ can fill?

God did not put us here to sit on the sidelines! In 2 Kings chapter 2 it talks of Elijah and Elisha traveling together. Elijah knew he was going to be taken by God and encourages Elisha to stay behind. Elisha refuses, so they travel on. Several times Elijah tells Elisha to stay, but again he refuses. In verse 7 we read of 50 men standing afar off, what are they watching for? Are they waiting for a miracle? Or a tradgedy? Are they afraid to get too close? Afraid of what might happen to them if they do?

In verse 9 Elijah says to Elisha “Ask what I shall do for thee”. I don’t know if Elijah knew what Elisha would ask or if he just wanted Elisha to say the words, but I do know this, Elisha was not hesitant in his answer! Elisha responded to Elijah “I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.” WOW!

Are we looking for a double portion? Are we forgetting that we aren’t called to be on the sidelines watching for a miracle? (And we sure aren’t supposed to be desiring tradgedy either!) Are we in the game? Are we asking for a double portion of God’s spirit?

It’s time we get in the game!

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Update on Gra-pa

MAN! It has been a long, busy few months!

Gra-pa is still our roller coaster! A little over a month ago the reconnected his intestines. They didn’t have enough to connect his small and large intestines together, so he will have to have a colostomy bag, but the Dr. said that was actually a good thing because his bowel was so short, that things would run through very quickly and he’d better stay close to the bathroom….

BUT~ He is able to eat now! He can have things like applesauce, jello, broth…not a gourmet meal, but better than nothing! He is also allowed to have COFFEE! Major plus! He prefers Folgers, so he’s not drinking much coffee, hospital coffee is just not really the best thing around.

We did have a little scare a couple of weeks ago, he was running a fever, had really bad stomach cramps and they didn’t know what was wrong, they thought it was a blood infection so they gave him a bunch of antibiotics…nothing. We were told, once again, that he may not make it… Then they ran a CT scan and found that the tube they still had in his stomach had shifted (Gra-pa has a tendency to tug around on them…) and so they fixed that and all was good again!

He’s still not completely out of the woods, until everything heals and he stays in the hospital, there is a chance of infection and something going wrong…his immune system is super weak. So please continue to pray for him! Pray for quick healing and that he doesn’t get discouraged, that has been the biggest battle of them all, too much time on his hands to do nothing and Satan likes idle people, especially ones who have no choice but to be idle!

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