Saturday, April 21, 2007

Going Home

Yesterday I booked a one-way flight to Saint John. I'm really going home.

The plan is this:

July 21 - dad and Dana get in Dad's truck and start driving out here
July 22 - mum and nanny fly here - we spend the week visiting and finishing packing
July 28 - dad and Dana pack up the vast majority of my stuff and head home
July 29 - Ben's dad arives, me, mum, nanny and Hana fly back home
July 30 - Ben and his dad leave, driving back our car and remnants of our stuff

So I'll be home on the 29th and will stay in Saint John until Ben gets here. Then we move to Moncton. It would be great if we could have a job set up for Ben and a house in the works, but if that can't happen we'll get an apartment until we're able to get a house (which better not take long, I'm sick of apartments!).

I can't wait to be home! Please pray that everything goes smoothly. The plan here is to start cleaning/packing a bit each weekend so there isn't too much left to do when everyone gets here. Also pray that Ben gets a good paying job before we move, that would be SUCH a blessing!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Exodus Part 2 - Through Water

(part one is here)

After the people if Israel cried out to God a redeemer was sent, Moses, and because of God working through him they were enabled to leave the land of slavery.

Exodus 12:31
During the night Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, "Up! Leave my people, you and the Israelites! Go, worship the LORD as you have requested.

I can imagine this seemed quite a shock to the people. They had seen the suffering of the Egyptians, and I'm sure they had experienced some level of suffering as well. God had protected them from the plagues, but I'm sure the slavemasters were not so kind to them during that time. Then suddenly they had their chance, their opportunity. They could leave. Not only that, but they were able to plunder the Egyptians at the same time and bring plenty of provisions with them.

I'm sure the group moved slowly. It would have been very large and with children and the elderly, as well as carts, heards, and everyone wondering what was really going on, where they were going. I'm sure there were many questions, but also a peace. God was leading them to freedom.

I can imagine the thoughts as they came upon the Red Sea, the last obsticle between them and freedom. I'm sure there were many theories on how they would cross that body of water, or guesses as to how long it would take them to go around.

And then tragety - the army was after them, they were trapped. They came to a realization I'm sure all of us encounter at lest once in life. Just because the bonds of slavery are broken, just because we are given freedom, doesn't mean we are free.

This is seen in various ways in the Christian life. There are still trappings of the "old man" even tho he is dead. There are habits, addictions, memories, thoughts, any number of things that can hold us back, keep us tied to the past. In my experience, it's always just when we think we're free that they sneek up on us. I've often imagined it as some sort of bungie coard that lets us get so far from our past and then suddenly snaps us back. Suddenly freedom doesn't feel very free.

The answer for the Israelites, and for us, was going through the water. I feel that baptism in Christinity is both over-emphasised and under-emphasised. It is seen as a great symbol of our position, of our aligning with Christ in life and in death, but for the average person I don't think the perspective is right. I know for a long time it wasn't for me.

When John called out "Repent and be baptized" it was before Christ's death, before the way was opened up to us. Baptizm for him was a symbol of change, of cleansing, of complete trust in God to save, before salvation comes. That's the part of baptism I feel is so often neglected, at least in my experience. As the Israelites stood on that shore, there were two options - lay down and be killed or sent back to slavery, or go through the water and be saved. Altho I'm sure to most both options looked like death. Going through the water for them was a great matter of faith, of things unseen, not of things experienced.

When we talk of baptism it's usually either as an infant or one who has already been "saved" and has experienced God's grace. I think baptism could be made broader, could be opened up for those who are willing to try, who are wanting to experience God's salvation even if they haven't yet. It could be a first step to God, not a final symbol of what has already happened.

This is going against the regular thought on this subject, against tradion, and probably wouldn't fit even with my denomination's stand on the topic. I do think it fits, however, in the historical context of the experience.

Baptism is a step of faith, it's trusting for salvation when there seems to be none in sight. It's a step towards God, a symbol of extreme need and desperation just as much as a symbol of that salvation being recieved through Christ's death and resurection. It can be a first step that places us in God's hands and out of reach of what enslaves us.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

So Excited!

I'm going to see Cirque de Soleil this summer!

*does a happy dance*

I've loved Cirque since the first time I saw it. For our honeymoon Ben and I saw Corteo and it was awesome. We had front row seats and the whole thing was just enthralling. It was like living in someone's imagination for a short time. So wonderful.

Mum called me today and told me that a "scaled down" version was coming to Saint John the end of August, but that tickets weren't on sale yet. I informed her that if they've announced it, tickets must be on sale somewhere! So we're going, with my aunt, her partner and my grandmother. I just wish Hana was older so she could come too!

I can't wait for this summer, so many wonderful things happening!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

10 reasons why my husband is the best man in the world

In no real order....

1. He gets me ice cream almost whenever I ask
2. He provides for his family and still makes time to just sit and be with us
3. He can remember any puzzle from any Zelda game
4. He is the most caring father I've ever seen
5. He'll stay up and feed Hana after getting home from working all night just so I can get an extra half hour of sleep
6. He tells me when I'm wrong
7. He's always able to see things from another perspective
8. He's one of the most kind and gentle people I've ever met
9. He's extremely generous
10. He supports the people he loves

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Bath Time

Hana has outgrown her baby tub. She doesn't like being reclined anymore, and it's so shallow that only her bum was coverd.

So she's graduated to bathing in the sink, and she likes it!

24 things about me

1. I turned 24 yesterday
2. Until I was 18 I had only lived in two houses, but they were about 20ft apart
3. Until I was almost 15 the only computer I had was a comadore 64
4. I'm too moody to have favorites
5. Being a mom is the best thing in the world that ever happened to me
6. I self injured for 8 years and have been clean for 6
7. I have never smoked
8. I have never been drunk
9. The only alcoholic drinks I've ever liked are wine, baby champaigne and Kahlua
10. Tylonol makes me sleepy
11. When I had my c-section the only pain reliver I had was tylonol
12. The anestesiologist thought I was crazy for not wanting morphine
13. I'm dyslexic
14. I have some of the best friends in the world
15. I have a secret desire to some day write books
16. I remember splitting my head open when I was 2
17. I'm asthmatic
18. The last asthma attack I had was a year and a half ago
19. I don't like fish, I try it occasionally and nothing changes
20. I think it's because I caught a fish when I was 5ish and they BBQed it...I cried
21. I can tolerate dogs but would never choose to own one
22. I want a cat but can't have one in this appartment
23. I've lost count of how many times I've dyed my hair
24. I had a really hard time thinking up things for this list.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Intellectual Dishonesty Part 2 (aka a rant)

I seem to have been causing problems again.

I got a private message on one of my boards asking why I had a problem with one of the other posters and why I'm always picking fights.

It made me confused, frustrated, and a bit angry.

It seems that in the name of "playing nice" I'm supposed to keep my mouth shut. It seems people would rather I just smile and wave and then talk about what I disagree with behind someone's back, or else be so ambiguous about what I say that you can't really tell if I agree or disagree.

I'm sorry, but that isn't going to happen.

Silence is agreement. If there is a topic being discussed that I have an oppinion about, I will give my opinion. I will even word it strongly. And I will make it sound like I think I'm right. I don't think that makes me mean, I think it makes me direct, and honest. I don't want there to be any question about where I stand. And if I didn't think my opinion was right I'd be out looking for a different one.

I'm not a mean person. I am direct. I am even blunt. Some people don't know what to do with it, but others appriciate it in me. My intention is always to help and to inform. I know that I myself have a habit of getting trapped in my emotions and being unable to see beyond my own ideas, and in those times I appriciate another voice to help me see things from a different perspective. If everyone around me agreed with everything I did or said I'd be a much different person, and not in a good way.

Online, I'm even more direct than in person. In a real conversation there's time to clarify, there's things said through inflection and body language. Unable to rely on those subtle cues, I try to make things as easy to understand as possible. There are no hidden meanings or agendas. If you look for something underlying what I type, I'm sure you'll find something, but it will be your creation, not mine. At the same time, I try to give the benefit of the doubt to others in the same way - if my understanding of something isn't quite the direct meaning of what's being said, I either assume I'm reading too much into something or ask for clarification, just in case.

I'm able to admit when I'm wrong, and willing to apologize. Not those fake "I'm sorry if you're upset" apologies - if I wasn't upset, why would I be needing an apology? but a real, honest, "I'm sorry it came across that way, that's not what I ment but I understand why you took it that way, let me rephrase it so you can see what I meant" apologies.

My identity and beliefs are not tied up in the opinions of those around me. I'm ok with people disagreeing with me, in fact, I seek them out. I'm not hurt, offended, or insecure when someone points out flaws in my thinking or other ways of seeing/doing something. It helps me grow. I do get offended when someone makes an attack on me, on my family, or makes it sound like I'm a complete idiot. Take issue with my position, not with who I am thankyouverymuch.

Also, I understand that my beliefs do not change reality. Wheather I agree with them or not, certain things will not change. People will go to war. Raceism will happen. People will abuse other people. I can pretend it's not real, I can say it's not right, but the facts don't change. Just because I do not like that something is true does not mean it isn't, or that I should take issue with the person pointing it out.

On the same line, just because someone believes one thing doesn't mean they shouldn't be exposed to something else. There are people in the world who sincerely believe the holocost didn't happen, that Elvis is alive, and that formula is just as good as breastmilk. Their beliefs, however, don't change what is true.

On truth, virtually anything taken to the extreme is not true. That's the nature of our world, there is an exception to every rule. No matter what fact you come up with there will be something that will go against it. However, that fact doesn't make general statements completely invalid. If we all qualified every statement we made nothing would ever get said (as anyone who has ever been in a McMillen class is well aware of....). Just because rotweiller doesn't follow the "i before e except after c" rule doesn't mean that the rule is completely useless and should never be said.

And so to recap, I'm not a mean person, I don't pick fights, and I won't keep my mouth shut when I have something to say. If you have a problem with that, that's fine, I don't expect you to keep your mouth shut either.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

5 months

Hana is 5 months old today.

In the past 5 months she has learned to "talk" and frequently lies in her bed telling the stickers on her wall all about her day before she goes to sleep. Ben and I turn down the TV so we can listen to her babbles, whines, laughs and everything else. She's learned to stand up and it's one of her favorite things to do. Given the chance, I don't think she'd sit at all, she frequently refuses to bend when we try to put her down. She's learned how to blow raspberries and does so all day long, getting everything and everyone within two feet of her covered. She's learned to hold her own bottle, and feed herself. She's also learned how to take the bottle out of her mouth, which she seems to prefer over holding it in there. She's learned to roll from front to back but refuses to do so with people watching. I think she's also learned to roll from back to front, but she hates being on her tummy so it doesn't happen. She's learned how to use her bouncer and loves bouncing, spinning, swinging and standing in it. She's learned how to sit, and also learned how to grab her toes. The two combined means she still falls on her face a lot, but now it's by choice. She's learned that if she kicks her covers off at night we'll pick her up, but if she hasn't we know she just needs some comfort and help getting back to sleep.

At the same time as she's been learning all these things she's been teaching me a lot. I've learned I can go 3 days without a shower and still make myself presentable enough to go to the store. I've learned that being spit up on in public isn't the end of the world and that if people even notice they have the decency not to care. I've learned that waking up with a warm squishy baby beside me is better than sleeping. I've learned that a smile can make everything better. I've learned that cleaning up baby messes can be fun. I've learned how to laugh more. I've learned the whole world can stop when my baby cries, smiles, or does anything else. I've learned to appriciate things more. I've learned how to keep life simple. I've learned how to be active and to relax more. I've learned that being a mother is the most amazing gift in the world.

Monday, April 02, 2007

It's official

Ben and I got a letter from our landloard this weekend.

As of August 1st (the day after our lease is up) our rent will be going up by 250$. That means we'd be paying almost a thousand for a basement apartment.

That isn't happening.

So we're definately moving back east. To Moncton is our plan. We're trying to find Ben a job before we move, but even if that doesn't happen we officially can't afford to stay here, so we'll have to just move on faith.

Getting the letter was actually a good thing. The only thing that was making us hesitate about moving back was the cheep rent here. As it was, I wouldn't have had to go back to work when my mat leave is up. I even turned down an Asst. manager position because I didn't want to go back to work.

When we move back I might have to work part time, but I can deal with that....childcare is more reasonable there, and I have some wonderful friends trying to start a daycare ;)

Still, I'd much rather not have to work, or only work a few hours a week. We'd also like to buy a house, so Ben needs to make a decent ammount of money.

So be praying for us. None of what we need is more than God can do. I'll keep you updated as we find out more