Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Baseball Fever!

Spring isn't even here and Baseball Fever has hit our home! Last day for sign up were today. We are hoping and praying that we have enough players for a couple of Junior League Teams.

My Baby Girl #2 and I stayed home while my Babe took everyone else baseball/softball shopping. Or should I say buying?! She was able to chill out and play video games, which by the way she enjoys playing. Her favorite game is Kingdom Hearts I & II.

She even got to play for a couple of hours. Uninterrupted too! She doesn't know when she'll get the chance to play. Baby Boy #5 is the Master Player! I'm not kidding!

Baby Girl #1 and Baby Girl #3 needed new gloves. Baby Girl #3 also needed new cleats. They are both playing for our church's women's softball league. The boys needed new cleats. Praise the Lord they found everything they needed at Sports Authority. YEAH!!! For Baby Boy #4 I ordered online 2 new sliding shorts. Baby Boy #5 will be using his brother's old ones, they still look like new. Baby Boy #4 old practice baseball pants have been passed onto hi younger brother. They look like new too. I guess I'm a little compulsive about keeping clothes in good conditions. Don't get me wrong! When they come home from practices or games they are dirty as dirty can be. I just soak them in oxyclean. If something is white, then it should look white, not yellow! Got that from my Mama. :o) So, we are all set for baseball. Can't wait til it begins!

Oh, need I say that everyone wanted to try out their new stuff? I forgot to mention that my Babe also bought a ball slinger thingy. Don't know what it's called, but you'll see it in the pictures...

Baby Girl #3 is thrilled with her new softball gear, BUT she's not thrilled that her mama has asked her to pose with her new gear. Sorry Baby Girl, you should be use to it by now! :o)

I only got a couple of shots of Baby Girl #3. She didn't stay out there long. She wanted to take a shower before her grandma came over.

Here is my Babe with the "ball slinger" thingy I had mentioned earlier. They all had a great time catching all those fly balls and line drives. This was definitely a great purchase.

I was having a hard time getting a picture of Baby Girl #1 where she wasn't ah... upset. She wasn't thrilled that her sister got the same kind of glove that she had gotten. It's that "I want to be different" thing that we all go through. By the time they were done playing around, she was her old self again. Too bad I wasn't around to take of picture then. :o(

I loved this action shot of her. Well, actually I loved another one, but she would KILL me and disown me as her mother if I put that picture up.

I LOVE this picture. He is just watching his Daddy. Yes Baby, one day you'll grow up to be as strong as your Daddy.

I must of been on a roll today. I managed to get another action shot! Kudos for me! He is giving it all he's got to get this one too. I just love seeing my children play. They get so into it!

Yep, he caught this one too. Look closely in his glove... the ball is yellow. He eats, sleeps, dreams about baseball. God has blessed him with incredible talent.

I just realized that my Babe and I are both wearing gray. :o) Since I didn't get my picture last night. I got me one today. Wooooooo Hooooooo!

My Baby Girl and I. She tends to be like my Babe. She doesn't like to pose for pictures. Don't know why, she's so beautiful.

Me and my Baby Boy. He's growing up so fast. He's already 5'2"! I can't believe that he's going to be 13 in 39 days! They grow up in a twinkle of an eye.

Me and the not so Baby of the family. He is already 10. He'll be taller than me in no time. Be still my heart... I love my family...

Friday, January 26, 2007

Because You Loved Me

I was browsing through myspace music. I really like Celine Dion. I came across her song, Because You Loved Me. I've heard it before, many times. I decided to really listen to the words.

I couldn't help but think about my beloved Babe. Why is it that I can't seem to put my feelings into words. Then when I hear a song it's like, YEAH, that's what I think and feel. Then to hear your feelings put to music makes it so much more real. You get to hear it and think about the words. I end up thinking about the times he's "brought" those words to life for me. I don't know if others feel that way about songs. I know I do.

I'm so blessed that God saw fit to bring him into my life. I love him more than what I ever dreamed I could love someone.

To me, my Babe has been and continues to be the words to this song. I could take this song and sentence by sentence share a time when he made it real for me. He completes me

Because You Loved Me

For all those times you stood by me
For all the truth that you made me see
For all the joy you brought to my life
For all the wrong that you made right
For every dream you made come true
For all the love I found in you
I'll be forever thankful baby
You're the one who held me up
And never let me fall
You're the one who saw me through, through it all

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

You gave me wings and made me fly
You touched my hand I could touch the sky
I lost my faith, you gave it back to me
You said no star was out of reach
You stood by me and I stood tall
I had your love I had it all
I'm grateful for each day you gave me
Maybe I don't know that much
But I know this much is true
I was blessed because I was loved by you

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

You were always there for me
The tender wind that carried me
The light in the dark shining your love into my life
You've been my inspiration
Through the lies you were the truth
My world is a better place because of you

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me faith 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

I'm everything I am
Because you loved me

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Thankful Thursday

"in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
-1 Thessalonians 5:18

1. My crocs. I no longer have hurting, freezing toes.

2. Two new scented candles, Gardenia and Honeysuckle.

3. Children that are humble and thankful.

4. A PHENOMENAL hubby.

5. Prayer warriors

6. Unconditional love

7. Mended friendships

8. Hot chocolate with a touch of Barnie's Raspberry Syrup- specially on cold days/nights.

9. Answered prayers

10. My Salvation

Sayings I Say The Most

I have so many "sayings". Some I pick up from movies or songs. I guess I could share a list of sayings I like from movies. Hmmm, I like that. :o) I might do that soon. For now, these are some of the sayings I say the most.

1. "I love you"

2. "You're phenomenal!"- remember, I picked this word up recently.

3. "Be still my heart"

4. "Sweetie"

5. "Darlin"

6. "Can't wait till you get home." ;o)

7. "Hey Beautiful!"

8. "Life is Good"

9. "I love this song!"

10. "God doesn't make junk!"

11. "As you wish" -another way of saying I love you.

2. "What ever you like." -always in a loving way.

13. "Have I told you lately that I love you?" - I know it's from a Rod Stewart song, but I LOVE saying it. :o)

14. "Why do you want to leave me?" -with an accent.

15. "It just is."

Monday, January 22, 2007

My Ain True Love

"I see you in every picture, I hear you in every song."
-Author Unknown

This morning while checking my email, I was listening to the soundtrack of Cold Mountain. Some of the songs just tugged at my heart. My favorite from that cd is, You Will Be My Ain True Love by Alison Krauss and Sting.

I love the softness of her voice. She sounds so angelic. Sting, well, what can one say?! He's got a sound all his own. Their voices compliment each other, they harmonize beautifully. Alison sings the first two verses and Sting sings the last two. I could listen to this over and over again.

As I was listening to the song, I started to wonder, what does "ain" mean? I had never heard that word before. So, I decided to look it up. Ain means: own. It's origin is Scottish. "Ain", is certainly more romantic than "own". It kind of just takes your breath away.

I have an "ain true love", my Babe. I love him more than words could ever say. Some songs bring thoughts of him to my mind. Some movies too. That's why I love the quote above. It's how I feel about my ain true love.

My Ain True Love

You'll walk unscathed through musket fire,
No ploughman's blade will cut thee down,
No cutlass pull will mark thy face,
And you will be my ain true love,
And you will be my ain true love

And as you walk through death's dark vale,
The cannon's thunder can't prevail,
And those who hunt thee down will fail,
And you will be my ain true love,
And you will be my ain true love.

Asleep inside the cannon's mouth,
The captain cries, "Here comes the rout,"
They'll seek to find me north and south,
I've gone to find my ain true love.

The field is cut and bleeds too red,
The cannon balls fly round my head,
The infirmary man may count me dead,
When I've gone to find my ain true love,
I've gone to find my ain true love.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Stain Glass Masquerade

This morning during our church's offertory my Baby Girl #3 and Steps sang the song Stain Glass Masquerade. It's a song by Casting Crowns . The did a wonderful job.

My Baby Girl left Sunday School class early to go practice with Steps in the sanctuary. Just before she left, she shared with me that she was a nervous. She felt like she had butterflies in her belly. I told her not to worry, that they were going to do great. They have been practicing for quite some time. I know they were both nervous, but to tell the truth, it didn't show.They sing so beautiful together and they have great harmony. I look forward to hearing them sing together again. I pray that our Heavenly Father bless them as they continue to follow His will for their lives.

Casting Crowns is a Christian band. We have a couple of their cd's. There isn't one song that doesn't reach down and touch your heart. Below are the lyrics to the song they sang. If you check out their site, you can hear a brief part of the song.

Stain Glass Masquerade

Is there anyone that fails
Is there anyone that falls
Am I the only one in church today feelin’ so small

Cause when I take a look around
Everybody seems so strong
I know they’ll soon discover
That I don’t belong

So I tuck it all away, like everything’s okay
If I make them all believe it, maybe I’ll believe it too
So with a painted grin, I play the part again
So everyone will see me the way that I see them

Are we happy plastic people
Under shiny plastic steeples
With walls around our weakness
And smiles to hide our pain
But if the invitation’s open
To every heart that has been broken
Maybe then we close the curtain
On our stained glass masquerade

Is there anyone who’s been there
Are there any hands to raise
Am I the only one who’s traded
In the altar for a stage

The performance is convincing
And we know every line by heart
Only when no one is watching
Can we really fall apart

But would it set me free
If I dared to let you see
The truth behind the person
That you imagine me to be

Would your arms be open
Or would you walk away
Would the love of Jesus
Be enough to make you stay

Chorus x2

Well if the invitation’s open
To every heart that has been broken
Maybe then we close the curtain
On our stained glass masquerade

Is there anyone that fails
Is there anyone that falls
Am I the only one in church today feelin’ so small

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Shoot Straight

Our oldest two and their College & Career Sunday School class had a group fellowship tonight. I know this sounds funky, but yes, they all went to Shoot Straight.... an indoor shooting range. :o)

The girls wanted us to come along. I'm so glad they enjoy spending time with mom and dad. :o) I have to say upfront, we had a BLAST! (pun intended) My Babe and I took two of our guns. Our .357 magnum and the 38 special. Some of the others brought along their dad's gun too.

I need to mention that this was not my first time shooting. My Babe taught me how to shoot when we first got married. Yep, almost twenty five years ago. I've only gone shooting a couple of times since. It's been a little over 20 years since I've shot a revolver. I'm a little rusty, but I would LOVE to get back into the swing of it.

The targets above are from shooting the 22 caliber rifle. It's hard to see, all but one shot is center target. The white dots that are between the arms are not holes. My first shot was right above the number 5 on the chest. After my first shot I got comfortable with the rifle. It was a heavy rifle but easy on the trigger. Gotta get me one of those. ;o)

This was my target for the 357 magnum. Boy does this gun have a kick to it. All I kept thinking was "be still my heart!" I just LOVED shooting this revolver. It had such power to it. My very first shot of the night was all the way to the right on the paper. I forgot to cock the gun. So it was very hard for me to pull the trigger. Needless to say that I cocked it every time after that.

The shots on the left arm were done by my Babe. He was aiming there. We shared this target. He wanted to keep away from my area, so I can claim my hits. I love this man. XxOoXXOO
I'm so psyched about going target shooting again. I know Baby Girl #3 and the boys would love it too. We hope to go as a family soon.

*note: I had the hardest time winding down tonight. Last time I checked the time it was 3:46a. I did use my time wisely though. I prayed for those that the Lord laid in my heart to pray for.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


I hadn't heard that word in ages. I mean who goes around saying something is, PHENOMENAL? It's such a BIG word. What does it really mean? Nowadays, is anything or anyone really phenomenal?

Phenomenal: highly extraordinary or prodigious; exceptional; outstanding; exceedingly or unbelievably great; very unusual; remarkable.

My Babe wanted me to drop off some paperwork to our Little League treasurer. She's a nice lady. She was going on and on about what a good job my Babe was doing as the President of the Little League. One of the words she used was, phenomenal. As I was walking back to the car, I was thinking, she has no idea just how right she is. I should mention that I did share with him what she had told me, but my Babe is a modest man to boot.

What makes my Babe phenomenal? Let me tell you:
* he loves the Lord and seeks His face
* he loves me unconditionally
* he's gentle
* he cares
* he provides for me and our children
* he puts God first, me second and our children third. I wouldn't have it any other way.
* he's a great leader
* he really listens
* he admits when he's wrong (which is seldom, but even though, he admits it) :o)
* he forgives
* he is committed
* he's a man of his word
* he's tender hearted (but only in front of me)
* he's tough
* we fit perfectly together
* he is honest, even when it hurts
* he is modest
* his eyes twinkle with mischievousness
* he's funny
* his laughter brings me joy
* his hugs give me comfort
* his love fills my heart
* he's my White Knight
* he's my Champion
* he's my All in All
* he is everything and more that I ever dreamed of possible

I could go on and on, but one sentence says it all... My Man is PHENOMENAL!

Friday, January 12, 2007

Where are the classics?

Today my oldest daughter was telling me about his story she had to read for her "Literature" college class. By the time she finished telling me what the story was about, I was thinking, "They consider that literature?"

The dictionary defines literature as: writings in which expression and form, in connection with ideas of permanent and universal interest, are characteristic or essential features, as poetry, novels, history, biography, and essays.

For this same class she had to read short story by Stephen King. PLEASE tell me, how that could ever be considered literature? I'm floored! Her class was not the only class told to read a Stephen King story. Baby Girl #2 had to read one for her literature class too. They aren't even being taught by the same teacher!

What kind of junk are our college students learning? Why is it necessary for them to read hogwash? How does that improve their lives? How does that make them a better person? Putting warped images in their minds is a waste of brain cell.

What happened to the great classic literatures? Just to name a few, books or stories by Charlotte Bronte, Louisa May Alcott, O. Henry, Mark Twain, Alexandre Dumas, Victor Hugo, Emily Bronte, William Shakespeare, Robert Louis Stevenson and of course the greatest book of all, The Bible. Why aren't they pushing those books?

I'm so ticked! Why make someone read a book they don't want to read? What if they don't want the horrific images described in the books in their brains. Once it's in there, it can surface at any time. Whether you want it to or not. URGH!!!!!!!! I better stop right here before my pre-saved vocabulary starts spewing out.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

I Refuse

I Refuse

I refuse to be discouraged, to be sad, or to cry;
I refuse to be downhearted, and here's the reason why:
I have God who's mighty, Who's sovereign and supreme;
I have a God who loves me, and by grace I'm on His team.

He is all-wise and powerful. Jesus is His name;
Though everything is changeable, My God remains the same.
My God knows all that's happening; Beginning to the end;
His presence is my comfort; He is my dearest friend.

When sickness comes to weaken me, To bring my head down low,
I call upon my mighty God; Into His arms I go.
When circumstances threaten to rob me of my peace;
He draws me close unto His breast, Where all my strivings cease.

When my heart melts within me, and weakness takes control;
He gathers me into His arms, He soothes my heart and soul.
The great "I AM" is with me. My life is in His hand.
The "Son of the Lord" is my hope. It's in His strength I stand.

I refuse to be defeated. My eyes are on God;
He has promised to be with me, As through this life I trod.
I'm looking past all my circumstances, to Heaven's throne above;
My prayers have reached the heart of God; I'm resting in His love.

I give God thanks in everything. My eyes are on His face;
The battle's His, the victory mine; He'll help me win the race.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

A Diamond

God has incredible timing. I shouldn't be amazed by this, I really shouldn't. I know, that I know, that His timing is ALWAYS best... no matter what.

I receive a couple of different devotionals, every day from different sites. Being that I've been sharing about what I consider my Treasures, I thought I'd share one of my devotions for today. I felt it went along with what I've been writing about lately.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: A diamond is a chunk of coal that made good under pressure.

SCRIPTURE FOR THE DAY: Consider it all joy…when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. -James 1:2-4

How true is that! Without trials and tribulations, we wouldn't have those mountaintop experiences. Without those hard, heartbreaking times, I wouldn't be who I am today. Do I want to go through the valleys? No, but I'm thankful that He's carrying me through them. I start off as a coal and He turns me into a diamond. What an AWESOME Father I have. He can be yours too. Ask me how.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

My Treasures... My Babe

My Babe is more than my treasure. He completes me. He's the man of my dreams. No, he's more that what I ever dreamed possible.

In a world where divorce is running rampant, it's hard to find a couple that really and truly love each other unconditionally. Well, look no further. My Babe and I are that couple.

He is my Prince, my Knight, my Champion, my Hero, my Defender, my Best Friend, my Soul Mate, my Lover, my Guard and my Leader. The list could go on and on, he's my everything.

He has ALWAYS been all that and more to me. I can honestly say we've been happily married for 24 years. Well, 25 this summer. Every year I think, it can't be any better than this, and it does.

I don't like to brag on him only because I know there are so many hurting women out there. Women that have no idea what it's like being married to a man like mine. At times I feel guilty. My heart aches for them. I want all of them to have what I have. To feel for their man what I feel for mine.

What's our secret? I don't think it's a secret. It's something we all in our minds, but do we know it in our hearts? You have to love unconditionally and put "self" away. Other than having Christ as your foundation of course.

He puts God first. Ahead of all else. Think about it. If he puts God first, that means he wants to please God. In pleasing God, he's being a godly man, husband, dad, provider, leader and everything else falls into place. Nothing else goes above me. Not our children, not his family, not his friends, not his work, not his hobby, nothing! Is he the only that does this? No, I do the same.

We aren't perfect. Who is? Only Jesus Christ was/is perfect. Do we fall? Yes. Do we hurt each other yes. Why, because we are human. Our goal is to be better, love better leave this place better than what it is. It starts with us.

How we treat each other is an example to our treasured gems... our children. My prayer is that we are being the example that our Heavenly Father wants us to be. That our children in turn will do the same. That our love for our Father and for each other be a good be a good witness and put others to Christ.

Friday, January 05, 2007

My Treasures... Priceless Gems

I have five priceless gems... my children. I can't imagine my life without them. They are such a blessing.

"Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one's youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; They shall not be ashamed, But shall speak with their enemies in the gate." -Psalm 127:3-5

I can attest that I am happy and that my quiver is FULL! There is never a dull moment around our home. There is lots of love and peace. When family or friends come to visit they can't believe how peaceful it is at our home. I'm not saying that it's always like that, but it's like that most of the time.

I'll start by saying that yes, I am the birth mother of all my children. Yes, they all have the same Dad. We've been happily married for 24 years. Amazing how they all have the same mom and dad, but are so different and alike at the same time.

Baby Girl #1 is the adventurous one. Sports is her thing. Has big dreams of traveling. Loves to do mission work. Loves wee ones. Is studying to be an interpreter. Is a romantic at heart. Lover of country music. Is my partner for watching chick flicks. She acts first and then thinks. She's so much like mama.

Baby Girl #2 is the level headed one. The thinker, analytical, artistic one. She sees things as black and white, no gray. Right is right and wrong is wrong, no ifs or buts. Loves little ones. She's graceful and eclectic. She also loves missions work. Is studying to be do computer animations. Loves Christian rock music. Loves adventures as long as she's in control. Learning is her thing. She's so much like her daddy.

Baby Girl #3 is the fun loving, the emotional one. She's passionate about what she believes. Stands firm on her convictions. Like her sisters, she loves mission work. Plans to continue her studies in sign language and be an interpreter. Loves children. Has a sweet voice and sings. Loves to smile and make others feel at ease.

Baby Boy #4 is the all American type of guy. Loves sports, specially baseball. Is a great student. Always has a smile. Has a great sense of humor. People like being a round him. He's a spiritual leader. Speaks his mind, no matter what. Loves to help out in whatever way he can. He's got a little of his dad in him.

Baby Boy #5 is a tough little guy. He wants to be a Marine. He's also tenderhearted. What an awesome combination. Loves animals specially cows. Doesn't like school, but learns quickly. Is quick to help out. Stands up for those that can't or won't defend themselves. He's very creative. Has a vivid imagination. He's got so much of his dad and mom.

They all have a gentle spirit about them, but at the same time, strong convictions. All have so much in common but are so different. How people can doubt that there is a God is beyond me. It amazes me how we were so uniquely and wonderfully created.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

My Treasures... My Salvation

I know it sounds kind of funky to think of Salvation as a treasure. Think about it though. Where does one go if they aren't saved?

Had God not come down in human form, had he not suffered, had he not bled and sacrificed himself for me... us, we would of spent eternity in the fiery pit of hell.

I know what it's like not having God in your life. I wasn't saved until I was 28 years old. Before God came into my life, I thought I had it great. Great husband, wonderful children, happy life. Then a tragedy happened. My Baby Brother died. He was only 19. I felt so lost, empty, disconnected, alone, hopeless. I can still remember how that felt.

God changed all that. That's why my heart goes out to those that don't know Jesus Christ. He gave me hope. Yes things were great before but now, I can't imagine my life without Him. I have this peace that I can't even describe. My life isn't perfect. I still have trial and tribulations, but I also have hope. I know that He will get me through them. With Him... Life Is Good.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

My Treasures... Photographs

Yesterday I shared about how I consider memories a treasure. Today goes right along the lines of memories... photographs. Photographs help to capture the moments... the memories.

Sometimes you don't need words. Photographs alone tell a story. You just have to be careful and look closely. Look into the eyes, are they twinkling or full of sorrow? Is there warmth in the smile? Are the people standing close together, embracing or kissing. Can you feel the love? Are they standing apart? Can you feel their pain? Do they have peace? Do they have pain?

I have so many phtographs that I treasure. My mom wasn't good at keeping phtographs. So we don't have many of my siblings and me growing up. The ones my mom does have are special to me.

I'm proud to say that my dad was in the Army during the 60's. His native land is Cuba. That's where he was born and raised. When he left and came to the U.S., this became his home. My mom has a photograph of my dad stepping out of a plane. He's dressed in his uniform hat and all. It's in black and white. My dad looks so strong and proud. My sister made copies of it. So now, I too have copy.

Come summer time, we would vacation for one week in sunny Florida. The water was always crystal clear. The sand was soft. There is this a photograph of my dad on the beach where he is laying on a towel. My sister and I are beside him just looking at him. At the time it was taken she was 3 and I was 4. We had put a drink can on his belly. We were watching it go up and down as he breathed. This one is also in black and white. You can see all these little details. You can even see how we are mischievously smiling at what we were doing.

My favorite aunt was Victoria but we called her Tia Toya. Tia means aunt in Spanish. She was married to my granma's brother. So she really wasn't blood related, but she was love-related. She was always smiling and having fun. When we were younger we would go on vacations together. My mom has a couple of photograph of all of us on our trip to Washington DC. There's this one photograph of my Tio Manolo (uncle), her husband in an amusement park. He's sitting inside a ride that's a helicopter. Two were suppose to fit in the helicopter. Now my Tio Manolo was a BIG man. Not just a tall man, a BIG man. So one else could ride with him. We just told him that there was just more to him to love and then we'd squeeze him.

Tons of photographs were taken on my wedding day. We had over 500 guests. Being that I was the oldest of three and the first granddaughter to get married, it was a BIG occasion. I was grinning from ear to ear that day. I didn't even shed a tear. It was one of the happiest days of my life. I was 18 and my Knight had just turned 19. I love looking at my wedding album. I never thought I could be as happy as I was that day. I had no idea what was in store for me. As I always say... if you think this is good, the best is yet to be.

My brother is no longer with us. He passed away at the tender age of 19. Every photograph of him is a treasure. When I look at them, they help me to remember things that I can no longer remember on my own. I can hear his laughter, his teasing. In my minds eyes, I can see his smile. He only got to meet and love on two of my five children. I have a couple of photographs where he is blowing a bubble with his bubble gum. Our oldest was two at the time. He is holding her and she is trying to pop it with a kiss. To me this photograph is priceless.

It's one of my traditions to get a new Christmas picture frame every Christmas. In it I put a photograph of my five children. This is something I do for me. Two years ago, I had a brain operation. I was diagnosed with Chiari 2 Malformation with a 12mm herniation and hydrocephalus. So I was not "with it" that year. I don't remember much of what happened during that time. My sister took several photographs of my children and framed it for me. Words can't even describe what that meant to me.

I love looking through our albums. I have one for each of my children and then a family one too. I never get tired of taking pictures. My camera lives on our kitchen counter. I love taking pictures of things that I love and that are special to me. Sometimes our memories falter, but a picture preserves the moment.

"When we look at a picture, a moment of magic occurs. It is as if someone had laid a sheet of translucent paper over our thought and made a tracing of our memories."
-Tom Bentkowski

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

My Treasures... Memories

When I hear the word "treasure", the first thought that comes to my mind is something priceless, valuable, something irreplaceable.

Here is what the dictionary say is the meaning of, treasure.
1. wealth or riches stored or accumulated, esp. in the form of precious metals, money, jewels, or plate.
2. wealth, rich materials, or valuable things.
3. any thing or person greatly valued or highly prized: This book was his chief treasure.
–verb (used with object)
4. to retain carefully or keep in store, as in the mind.
5. to regard or treat as precious; cherish.
6. to put away for security or future use, as money.

I guess I was right on the money (pun intended). :o)I have different kinds of treasures. In the next couple of days, in no particular order, I'm going to write about some of my treasures. Today I'll focus on just one... memories.

I know it sounds funky. How can memories of something be a treasure? It is to me. I have so many memories that I treasure. I'll share just a few.

When I was about 6 my sister and I got a bike to share. It was a beautiful blue bike with a basket. We had been outside riding it when my mom called us in to eat lunch. We left our bike outside. When we went back outside our bike was not there. We were heartbroken. Someone had stolen our bike. My mom told us to take a nap and that she would go around the neighborhood to see if she could find it. When we got up, there is was. She had found our bike. At that moment I seized to see her as "just" a mom, she was Supermom. She had confronted the little thief and brought back our bike.

At the age of 8, I told my after school childcare provider that I my mom was pregnant and that I was going to have a baby brother. When my mom came to pick me and my sister up, she was congratulated by my teachers. My mom had no clue what they were talking about. Nine months later, my brother was born. To this day I remember the Italian restaurant my dad took me and my sister to, to celebrate my brother's birth. It was also the first time I had a sip of wine. My parents still have that bottle. This was 36 years ago.

During my teen years, I felt lonely, unloved and unwanted. No so much by my family, but because I was so painfully shy. I remember having thoughts of suicide. How this world would be better off if I wasn't in it. How I didn't even make a difference. Why be here? These are painful memories.

My first day as a senior in high school, one of my classes had to be changed. In my new class was this boy with the most beautiful blue eyes I had ever seen. I was wearing a white cotton dress that had little yellow flowers on it. This blue eyed boy and I would steal glances at each other through out the class. I was mesmerized.

A week before I turned 19, I said I do to that blue eyed boy. Since he was in the service, we were blessed to be able to travel in Europe. I can still recall all the adventures we had overseas... site seeing, country hopping, going topless, snow skiing, wind surfing, learning the language, meeting the people and more.

Finding out for the first time, that I was pregnant. I was in disbelief. We had been married 5 years and no babies. Euphoric and ecstatic doesn't even come close to how I felt. Ten months after the our first one, our second one was born, then eighteen months later our third one was born. Four years later our fourth one came along.

I was grief-stricken when at the age of 19 my brother passed away. My sister, his fiance and my grandma were visiting me and my family. The phone rang early Sunday morning. It was my mom. An Army chaplain had been trying to reach them since Saturday. My brother was in the 82nd Airborne division. He was killed by a drunk driver. My heart stopped when my mom told me my brother had died. My world as I knew it had fallen apart.

One night, a year and a half after my brother died, at my neighbors home I accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. God started to heal piece back together my heart. My world was being mended. My Babe and I got saved on the same day. We got baptized on the same day too.

Miscarrying at 18 weeks was traumatic. I had always wanted a large family. Would I be able to carry another child. My heart was once again broken. A year later our last baby was born. Our quiver was full.

I have many more treasured memories. These are just a few. I shared some good ones and some painful ones. God used the painful ones to make me stronger. I've been able to help others because of what I've gone through. So I'm thankful for the good ones and the sorrowful ones.

“I've never tried to block out the memories of the past, even though some are painful. I don't understand people who hide from their past. Everything you live through helps to make you the person you are now.”- Sofia Loren