Thursday, January 29, 2009

Mama-mia!!!! She's Two!

We had a fun family time together with RaeRae for her second birthday. Karla decorated musically and we all watched "Mama Mia" with Raegan! This was the first time I watched the movie. I had so much fun watching Raegan dancing throughout the whole movie! I probably could watch the movie again and see more of it that I didn't see!

The movie is a fun movie! I loved it. I couldn't accept how the movie industry has been promoting homosexual behavior and continued to do so in this movie too. That way of life is not according to how God created us to be related sexually to each other. I can't accept it as normal - just as I won't accept as normal someone with a disabling mental disorder, diabetes, a cleft palette, out of control anger, obesity, cancer, or any sickness! God did not create mankind with sickness but sin and dying did. When we died to God then sin over-powered us - in so many ugly ways.

To me, homosexual behavior is not any different from any other sins that so easily beset us. We all sin. I can't agree with the casual way our world accepts sleeping together without a commitment to each other of marriage (or jumping over a broom) too! There should be a commitment made towards one another previous to sex because the act of sex is very overpowering. Once its' desire has been accomplished then the anxious need is gone, and so many times today, so is the fleeting commitment and the 'I'll love you forever' partner. It's sad but it's true. Focus on the Family has many helps for dealing with the results of promiscuity. (Live Free Series)

Anyway, here is a little bit from our time with Raegan. I cannot believe that she is already two! I guess I've been busy!

The video is kind of dark, but you can still see her cute pig tails and how she was dancing along! haha (My favorite is the first one.)

video

video

Friday, January 23, 2009

More Poppin' Buttons!

Here is a man!

He has had some big shoes to fill all through his short life! I realize that it's not easy to be the one at the tail-end of a large family. He has grown up hearing the accolades given to his older siblings as they too succeeded first in high school and then at the University of Alaska. (Marie and Klint were both on UAA's Dean's List.)

Kris has proven himself to be disciplined by earning a spot on the University of Alaska's Chancellor's List , not the Dean's List... the Chancellor's List! He did it by knuckling down and studying hard. Today, we are all proud of my youngest son Kristopher David (link is to the actual Chancellor's list).

BTW, there's been talk from some (haha) quickly claiming a bit of credit for the passing down of smart genes in the family? (All in fun of course). After I've watched Kris diligently and with impressive discipline work very hard to earn his spot on this list, I won't even try to claim any credit for his accomplishment. It is his and his alone!

To those struggling out there with studies, I encourage you to keep on! Kris is proof that hard work pays off. Well done Kris! May God continue to bless your efforts as you work towards an Electrical Engineering Degree.

"I pray that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense, till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. Phil. 1: 9-11.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Happy Birthday Bec!

My little sister has a birthday today and I thought I would post this beautiful sunrise picture I took this morning for her since it is her day.

Happy Birthday Rebecca Ann, we love you.

There are so many birthdays this month in our family --- and I think I posted all about that before!

Wonder what kind of weather is in store? Red sky in the morning... sailors take warning. Red sky at night, sailors delight! Only thing is up here in South central Alaska we are landlubbers, so maybe it means nothing for us.

There is a bug with the Labels for the post: feature of BLOGGER.COM. When I try to add tags for my posts it automatically puts in previous tags, so weather becomes warm weather or whatever I had posted before. I have to leave a space between the new word and the comma. Kind of irritating.

P.S. Rebecca didn't like the picture of me below when I emailed it to her (the Face Melter picture). She said it scared her and she had to delete it. hehehe

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Almost Snapped An Owl

I was vacuuming my bedroom and had walked to the open window (so spring-like here right now) to look outside. I saw an owl sitting in a tree watching me! I ran from FOR my camera but decided to tell Mom about it first, so that she could get a peek at it too.

Anyway, by the time I got my camera, got Mom, showed her where it was and finally got my camera turned on, this is all that I got (See the bottom right corner of the top picture). awwwwwwwwww :-(

After doing some looking online, I believe that it was a Northern Hawk Owl. At first I thought maybe it was a Northern Saw-whet Owl, but they don't hunt during the day according to the National Geographic Society book: "Field Guide to Birds of the North." This guy was hunting and may have caught one of the little Common Red Polls that I've been feeding. :-(

You know the saying, "be careful what you say because a little birdie might tell on you!" Or sometimes my friends would reply "A little birdie told me," when trying to figure out how they knew something that was supposed to be secret. It must have come from this scripture:

"Do not curse the king, even in your thought; do not curse the rich, even in your bedroom; for a bird of the air may carry your voice, and a bird in flight may tell the matter." Ecclesiastes 10:20.

Hmmmmm...the wisest man ever, wrote that.

Monday, January 19, 2009

I Was Thinking (uh oh)

Picture of me from my iPhone and the App Face Melter.

Faith, trust, believing.

Have you ever seen a toddler set down on the floor and coaxed to walk -- stop, then wonder if the floor will hold him/her up?

Do you wonder each time if that chair is worthy to set your whole weight upon before you sit?

For most of us it is just a minute, fraction of a second we will choose to or choose not to venture forth in pursuit of anything. Whether it's the process of learning to walk or setting oneself down into a chair - a minute but complete trust, faith, and believing is necessary.

Such a small effort! A fraction of a second when we choose to or choose not to trust, believe, or have faith in something or someone.

A toddler won't ever walk if he wobbles in one place - afraid that the floor won't hold him up.

A chair's comfort/rest won't ever be enjoyed if one stands beside it unable to believe it will support.

Without trust, belief, or faith there is much we would choose not to do.

When we strike a match, it fires up in a minute second then it can be used to start fire elsewhere. It is like faith in God. When we choose to exercise faith in God, there is a flash when He fires up inside of us.

A small faith; a minute trust; a flash of belief. That's all God requires in order to begin His work in our hearts and lives. As one walks with Him and learns of Him, faith is increased, but our initial faith is granted by God, when we have chosen to trust, have faith and believe all that He claims to be, all that He is, all that He will do. He leaves that minute faith, trust and believing to us.

...the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed. Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus." Galatians 3:22 - 27

How incredible and beautiful that is to me!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Pictures

Picture is of Kodiak Harbor, November 2008.

Mom and I were talking about wedding days after my daughter Karla called (she's a wedding coordinator). Oh, BTW, Karla called to ask if I was interested in beading 100 bracelets for a client. I told her that such a monstrous endeavor might just sink me into a deep drepression!

Mom's graduation picture.

I mentioned to my Mom that I wished I had a picture of her and Dad when they were married. "I don't remember seeing any pictures of your wedding day, Mom?" She said she used to have a couple, not many. "The Saxton's took a few pictures of our wedding and gave me copies." "Who were the Saxton's?" "The teachers."

I did a search on the Saxton's name from my iPhone. I found this awesome story from the time of the 1964 Earthquake and Tidal Wave and read it to Mom:

"Curtis Saxton, local teacher and skipper-owner of the boat Gary tells us about seeing his crewless boat ride out of the harbor on one great surge of water during the tidal waves and disappear into the darkness headed in the direction of the Naval Base. He never saw the Gary again that night and figured it was among the missing sunk boats. However, at 6:00 a.m. the next morning while looking out a window of their house which sets above the beach down near where Pearson's boat storage used to be, Curtis and his wife Grace were amazed to see Gary come slowly sailing out from behind Near Island. As they watched Gary, which was riding high and dry, the boat came across the channel and finally rested quietly - right in front of their house! Skipper Len Helgason on his Foggy Cape put a line on her and towed it on up further in shore where Curt said he found almost no damage whatever to Gary. The Saxton's, who witnessed several vessels sink in the Near Island Channel near to their home, expressed gratitude to Skipper Helgason for his assistance in getting Gary back unharmed." City Hall Emergency Bulletin #19, WWW.KADIAK.ORG

Once again, I am impressed with the internet and the information that we can find now-a-days!

The Kadiak.org site was very interesting to find and then explore. I read historical information about the evacuation of Old Harbor there. It is funny how our minds work - I can only remember bits and pieces of the evacuation from Old Harbor to the Kodiak Naval Base, and then on a big military plane to Anchorage. I suspect that when anyone had stopped to survey the whole scene back then they saw me as one of the many children tired out and asleep on a pile of stuff somewhere - quiet and out of the way.

I wonder if maybe the Saxton's still have pictures from my parents Senafont and Vera Shugak's wedding day in Old Harbor? These are the Saxton's (Curtis and Grace) who taught in Old Harbor for a while. Maybe they have a picture or two of Mom and Dad somewhere in the bottom of an old photo box that makes them wonder who in the world are these people? I would be very interested in acquiring these pictures.

Friday, January 16, 2009

It's Not Cold!

Not "how cold is it there" Jettie, rather you should have asked "how warm is it there?" ha! It's raining now.

Yesterday we went out in my husband's truck and just before we got home... we slowly, ever so gently slid right off the road into the ditch! There we were for over an hour as Doug and my son Kris worked to get us up out of the gentle slope of a ditch onto the very icy, wet, slick road!

I am thankful my son Klint (who is away with work) had studded up his four wheeler before he left as my son Kris' truck lost it's four wheel drive and he's been working on it. Kris got the trailer and filled it up with gravel before he came. I should have got out of the truck to take pictures, but... it was wet outside, and slickery.

It was an exciting evening although I did not like sliding into the ditch even if it was a small ditch and we went in so gently. I am a major 'fraidy cat! I'm thankful we didn't slide into the ditch further back which could have been a wild ride down a steep hill! whew!

This rain may continue a few more days. Since it's supposed to be winter time right now, I am not putting any stock into what the weatherman says.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Refreshing Counsel

A wise man is strong, yes, a man of knowledge increases strength. For by wise counsel you will wage your own war. And in a multitude of counselors there is safety. Proverbs 24:5,6.

Doug heard Alistair Begg on the radio the first time and on the Ten Commandments. He came home and told me about him and then he got online and ordered the Ten Commandments series, Pathway To Freedom. So I knew his teachings had to be good, and they are! As we rode home from Homer on Sunday we listened to him. Pastor Begg teaches from Cleveland, Ohio and from a non-denominational church. Listen to Truth For Life online.

I am happy to report to Mom's fans, to those that prayed for this situation - Mom has come home! I am sleeping much better with her here too. We are in the process of applying for a room for her at a local senior home. This process could take years to complete. "We have a ten page waiting list with about twelve applicants on each page and your Mom is on the bottom of the list."

Mary told me not to even worry about getting the financial side of things figured out yet since its going to be a long while before they even get to Mom, then Susanne in Juneau said to fax it into them now so that she does not incur undue debt should they get a room for her immediately. I am getting mixed feedback! ha UPDATE: I just spoke with Susanne and she said Mom won't be eligible for help from the State until 2011.

Here is a poem from (I hope this link works.) Violet Able; a steadfast follower of Christ, a good counselor in the ways of the LORD.

How To Find Peace Of Mind

We listen to the newscasts that come daily to our ears,
We read alarming headlines that intensify our fears,
We grow more and more dissatisfied and feel less and less secure
As our days become more anxious and the future more unsure -
For with violence and dissension and chaos all around
We no longer feel with certainty that we stand on solid ground -
But in place of reading headlines that disturb our peace of mind
We should once more read the BIBLE & on its pages we would find

That this age is no different from the millions gone before
And that in every hour of crisis God has opened up a door
To all who seek His guidance and trust His all-wise plan,
For God provides protection beyond that devised by man -
And while God's Almighty Power is not ours to understand,
We know Who Holds the Future & we know Who Holds Our Hand.
And to have the steadfast knowledge that we never walk alone
And to rest in the assurance that our every need is known
Will help dispel our worries and in trusting Him we'll find
Right in the midst of chaos God can give us peace of mind.

Isn't that a great poem? Violet sent that to me when I was a teenager in high school. I have kept it all these many, many moons. When I take down my old Bible, the one that she picked up for me when I was a new Christian, I read it again and am refreshed.

Friday, January 09, 2009

iPhone Reading

Doug gave me an iPhone for Christmas and I have been enjoying getting to know it. There is so much one can do with this little gadget besides talk on it. It is amazing. I even downloaded "Pilgrim's Progress" and without carrying around a book I can pull it out of my purse and read while I wait for Doug in the car.

Here is a part that I really enjoyed reading:

Now I saw in my dream, that the highway up which Christian was to go, was fenced on either side with a wall, and that wall was called Salvation. (Isaiah 26:1) Up this way, therefore, did burdened Christian run, but not without great difficulty because of the load on his back.

He ran thus till he came at a place somewhat ascending, and upon that place stood a cross, and a little below, in the bottom, a sepulchre. So I saw in my dream, that just as Christian came up with the cross, his burden loosed from off his shoulders, and fell from off his back, and began to tumble, and so continued to do, till it came to the mouth of the sepulchre, where it fell in, and I saw it no more.

Then was Christian glad and lightsome, and said, with a merry heart, "He hath given me rest by his sorrow, and life by his death." Then he stood still awhile to look and wonder; for it was very surprising to him, that the sight of the cross should thus ease him of his burden. He looked therefore, and looked again, even till the springs that were in his head sent the waters down his cheeks. (Zech. 12:10)

....

....

Then Christian gave three leaps for joy, and went on singing--

"Thus far I did come laden with my sin; Nor could aught ease the grief that I was in Till I came hither: What a place is this! Must here be the beginning of my bliss? Must here the burden fall from off my back? Must here the strings that bound it to me crack? Blest cross! blest sepulchre! blest rather be The Man that there was put to shame for me!"

Does that bring back the first day of your salvation? It did for me! Salvation is incredible when you think about it. God planning a way to bring mankind back to Himself after mankind stepped away from Him. He is so loving. I hope that your heart can realize that too.

We have been in a deep freeze here and it just does not want to let up! Hoping for it to get warmer in the next few days.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Dis-R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Aloha to Christmas decorations for 2008. I have been busy all day putting things away. Putting the tree away, putting the new lamps (I found a great deal!) into their new places ....and finally - putting away my Mom's room.

My intent was to provide a happy, peaceful and safe place for Mom to live. A place that she would eventually be able to call home. I did hear her say a few times, "Oh, it's so good to be home." That made me smile.

She woke up in a mood the other morning which I did not understand. Maybe she "woke up on the wrong side of the bed." As I thought back over that morning I wished I had stepped away and left her to fuss alone instead of staying and trying to make her feel better. BUT...I didn't.

Now she has gone to my brothers house. The house none of her daughters (including me) wanted Mom to return to. But it is the house - the one that she apparently considers "home."

She came in July to live here, and while she was here, he had eventually sobered up. Mom had the money to pay for his habit and he took it while she lived there. While she was here (or my sister's homes), he lost his easy money and sobered up. Now she is home and we worry for her safety. When he sobered up again this time Mom's never-dying hope that he had finally changed revived and she began to be more and more discontent to be in my home.

"That's what she does," said my sister. She has to find a reason to go back and when we don't agree that my brother "has changed," she becomes agitated --- which I now see worked brilliantly for her. *kicking myself*

I don't know how to fix problems like this, even though we all learned to cope with Dad's alcoholism when I was young. I know of the abuses that alcohol can cause in families, but I still don't know how to help Mom get over my brother or my brother to get over alcohol.

I didn't think I was being disrespectful when I tried to contradict Mom's accusation "You are just tired of me and you don't want me here anymore." "No, no. That's not the truth." As she went on this way I remembered the little story "Lies" that I wrote awhile back about listening to wrong words. She was determined that I didn't want her here. I walked away in defeat, and she had us take her back to - that house.

I spoke with my brother today. He was growl-ly and disrespectful. He said, "You never called me before - now all of the sudden you are going to call all the time?" I thought to myself - I still am not calling you, I am calling Mom. I asked for Mom and bit my tongue.

So many people all over the world suffer just like this and worse, coping with alcohol habits that consume families. Why do people like alcohol anyway? Grape juice tastes so much better! I've seen the havoc that alcohol does to whole families. Too many Alaskan villages suffer with this ugly behavior. We should not consume it if we can't control it.

I commented to a good friend (my high school counselor) that I can't please everyone I guess, and she being the wise counselor commented back "Let's just try to focus on pleasing the Lord." Yes! That is exactly what I needed to be told and what I needed to read! Thanks Carol!

I do respect my Mom - by sharing this heartache I pray that it will help those in Alaska and other places that are unwillingly having to deal with alcohol abuse. I ask that you won't think I am being disrespectful of my Mom in sharing it.

I love my Mom. I want the best for her. I wish she was here with me right now. I am praying and trusting that God will bring the best into her life... and especially that it will include the changed heart and life of my brother. May it be so, Lord Jesus. Until then, I pray that God will protect her and give her wisdom about when it's time to come back here, or to my sister's homes. I will always have room in my home for Mom.

"The best thing to give to your enemy is forgiveness; to an opponent, tolerance; to a friend, your heart; to your child, a good example; to a father, deference; to your mother, conduct that will make her proud of you; to yourself, respect; to all men, charity." Benjamin Franklin

"Men are respectable only as they respect" Ralph Waldo Emerson

"A test of a people is how it behaves toward the old. It is easy to love children. Even tyrants and dictators make a point of being fond of children. But the affection and care for the old, the incurable, the helpless are the true gold mines of a culture." Abraham J. Heschel

Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, [My note: evidences of being filled with the Spirit are:] speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of God. Ephesians 5:17-21