Monday, February 28, 2005

Today, February 28, 2005

Driving...a rental car. Our van was wrecked last week, but it was a single-car accident and Tim was perfectly fine. The van slipped off the road in a heavy rainstorm, landing in a ditch with an unluckily-placed pipe that smashed up the underside. C'est la vie!

Reading...Laine's Letters, a site written by a wife & mom in California who has a heart for God like none I've read, and shares yummy recipes to boot! time with my brother, Stephen, who is moving to Chile in a week. We enjoyed a coffee-and-bookshop kind of day in my artsy-writerly town of Fairhope, Alabama

Drooling...over a bit of toffee from Punta Clara Kitchen. There is no doubt that the angels will serve toffee in Heaven!

Chatting... about chunky yarn and bamboo knitting needles with the shop owner of Debi's Little Yarn Shop in Fairhope.

Collecting...19 eggs while the 20th was being laid. Anyone want some? Tim's reaction when I emerge from the car with a girl bunny. Our boy bunny needed a wife and I simply could not resist her black spots on white fur.

Grinning...when Tim asks me if I realize that we are now going to have baby bunnies all over the place.

Ordering...28 baby chicks from Murray McMurray. Don't tell Tim! :)

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Contentment & My Favorite NF Book

If you are needing a bit of inspiration to get back into God's arms, or if you are feeling down, or if you are struggling with contentment and worry, then read my favorite non-fiction book:

Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow

The book deals with those issues (discontentment, anxiety, worry), but in a non-preaching sort of way. The book is easy to read and full of anecdotes (little stories). It literally changed my life, which is a bit cliche to say, but is true.

I was feeling discontent in our 1200 square foot home with four children ages 6 and under. I wanted so desperately for God to move us to the country, to a bigger and better home, but we had just lost a business so moving was not an option. We wouldn't be able to get another home loan now that our credit rating was ruined.

Me, a country girl at heart, was stuck in the middle of a small city with codes that would not allow me to raise even a chicken. Although we had a yard, there were no climbing trees on our property for the children to enjoy. No tadpoles, snakes, bunnies. We had no garage, no shed, no basement, and no attic. In other words, every thing the six of us owned had to fit into that 1200 square foot place. Not easy for Americans!

I was one discontent mama, living my days in that little house with so many small children around me. Tim would drive an hour each way to work, taking our only car with him. For 11 hours each day, I was alone with the children, wallowing in my discontentment and self-pity.

One day I was at a Bible study (my mom invited me to go with her so we crammed the children into her car) and someone quoted these words:

* Never allow yourself to complain about anything - not even the weather.

* Never picture yourself in any other circumstances or someplace else.

* Never compare your lot with another's.

* Never allow yourself to wish this or that had been otherwise.

* Never dwell on tomorrow. Remember that tomorrow is God's - not ours.

I didn't hear any other words for the rest of that Bible study hour. In my mind, I only heard the above words over and over. As soon as the Bible study was over, I grabbed the woman who had quoted the words. She said she got them out of Calm My Anxious Heart and allowed me to borrow her book.

I did not go home and become immediately content that day. No, my discontent had grown over many years, so it was much too large to release in one day. It did decrease, though, when I focused less on things and more on God. I learned, over time, that contentment will bring you peace.

The peace that follows contentment peace is worth accepting your circumstances.

In Philippians 4:11-13, Paul says, "For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret to be content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do anything through him who gives me strength."

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

The Cure for Frustration

I have not been having my morning God time.

I've been frustrated for the past couple of weeks with the housework (it seems to be multiplying), with my fatigue (always tired), with the children (who are always needing things like meals and clean socks), with Tim (who needs clean jeans for work, how dare he), with writing (because I'm not doing it), with the homeschooling (guilt consumes me here) and with the animals (who need food every day instead of when I randomly feel like giving it to them).

In short, I've been annoyed and frustrated.

I've found that if I start my day out with God time -- a consistent God time, a time that is scheduled as if Jesus were sitting in my rocking chair in the library, waiting for me to join Him -- then the rest of the day goes much smoother.

Things get done, jeans get clean, animals are enjoyed, the children are happier, dh gets spoiled, I am less tired because I am more scheduled, and I am less frustrated with all the Earth and every person in it.

Sure, trouble still comes, but it is more tolerable because of the time with God where Scriptures have been memorized and praises have been sung.

Most amazingly to me, the little annoyances almost disappear.

With a song in my heart and a verse in my head, I'm not as upset about things like sticky tables or playdough in the carpet. My eternal perspective improves.

Have you had your time with God today?

I am committing to finish out this week with a consistent God time at 6:30am. I'll keep you posted on whether or not it improves my disposition. I hope so (and I know my family really hopes so!).

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Our Bella is 2!

Happy Birthday, Alyssa Belle! We love our 2 year old!
Lori Seaborg 2005

Friday, February 18, 2005


Reading...Marriage Under Cover by Bob and Audrey Meisner (I met the authors and got a signed copy from that publishing conference I went to.)

Playing...with lots of the kids' friends this week. I want to stay home all day tomorrow!

Missing...our friends who moved to Arizona. Wish Arizona was closer to Florida!

Opening...a package to find The King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion cookbook. It gets me to dreaming of all the baking I can do! Too bad I'm more of a cookbook reader than a cookbook cooker.

Enjoying...the beautiful blue eggs that my Americana chickens have been laying. Go girls!

Writing...only here on the blog and here on the Yahoo! group. Not enough.

Petting...our little bunny who looks exactly like Peter Rabbit.

Wanting...a Mrs. Bunny so we can see if they really do "breed like rabbits."

Catching...our little bunny who escaped from his cage, which is really my metal garden cart. He was gone for hours. hero, Tim, who not only rescued our teenage chicken from a dog's mouth a few weeks ago, but now rescued my bunny from another dog pursuit. best big-eyed doe-eyed look at Tim when he said my animals are a pain.


Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Worrying About Money

Sunday's Extreme Makeover Home Edition was for a family whose man of the house had lost his job earlier in the year. As a result of the job loss, the family was homeless and living in a shelter when the show rescued them. I saw tears in Tim's eyes and felt them in mine several times during the 2 hour episode.

It was so recent that we were experiencing the pain of Tim's job loss. Like almost all job terminations, our was an unexpected, cruel blow (for the story, click here and scroll down to the December 11, 2004 entry).

In the middle of the episode, Tim , who was holding the baby and stroking her hair, said with a catch in his voice, "I hope I can always take care of all of you."

I know he will, because I know that God will.

This is God's promise for us:

"And He said to His disciples, "For this reason I say to you, do not worry about {your} life, {as to} what you will eat; nor for your body, {as to} what you will put on.

For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing.

Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap; they have no storeroom nor barn, and {yet} God feeds them; how much more valuable you are than the birds!

And which of you by worrying can add a {single} hour to his life's span?

If then you cannot do even a very little thing, why do you worry about other matters?

Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these.

But if God so clothes the grass in the field, which is {alive} today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, how much more {will He clothe} you? You men of little faith!

And do not seek what you will eat and what you will drink, and do not keep worrying.

For all these things the nations of the world eagerly seek; but your Father knows that you need these things.

But seek His kingdom, and these things will be added to you." (Luke 12:22-31)

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Hermit Crabbing in Gulf Shores, Alabama
Lori Seaborg 2005

Gulf Shores, Alabama
Lori Seaborg 2005

A Beach Perspective

We enjoyed our time on the beach last week in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Hurricane Ivan made landfall in Gulf Shores only 5 months ago. If you visited the area, you'd be surprised at how much destruction is still remaining. My husband's brother, who was visiting from the Chicago area, said there would never be this much construction left undone in Illinois. He said the Unions would take care of it and it would have all been done by now. He couldn't believe the slow Southerners, having so much left undone 5 months later.

He didn't see the truth.

The truth is, the hurricane was so devastating that when you look around, you think you are looking at unfinished business, when really you are looking at how much has already been done. And it is amazing.

Whole houses have been removed, water and sewer lines entirely redone, phone and power lines replaced, more debris than you could imagine has been hauled off, the sand has been sifted...there is so much that has been done. There is still so much to do.

I'm attaching a photo which I took from our beach house, "A Minor Reflection." My photo only shows how pretty the beach still is. Notice how close the water is to the houses now.

Two houses down from ours was a house wrapped in yellow "Do Not Cross" tape. It was sliced in half by the hurricane so that it is now in a V shape (the house is on stilts). The beachfront of the siding is ripped off, so you can see hanging ceiling fans and a recliner in the living room, cupboards in the kitchen. To the left and right of our house are two beautiful homes that don't have decking or stairs. Cables are hanging loosely under the houses. Over 2 feet of sand was blown out from under all of the homes.

We tend to get caught up in the latest news, forgetting those who were in the news in the past. Hurricane Ivan is all but forgotten to those who live elsewhere, but to us on the Gulf Coast it is referred to daily as "The Storm."

If we are so affected by such a localized storm, one which cost us money but not many lives, how much more affected are those who were in the tsunami?

Please, let's not forget about those who suffered from the tsunami. They still need our prayers.

Monday, February 07, 2005


I have just gotten back from Nashville, where I went to a publishing conference (three editors want to see my proposal! that''s good news!). Now we are packing up and heading to Gulf Shores, Alabama, which is quite close to our house. Tim's (dh) family rents a beach house there every year, so we'll be there for the rest of the week. What a pity having to act like tourists on the beach for a week! :)

Since I'm not blogging much, I'm heading you to some of my favorite blogs, which are hopefully more active this week. Here you go:

Fallible This bloggist (I don't know if that's a word) blogs on daily life musings. Funny!

Wind Scraps by author Shannon Woodward (she posts comments here sometimes, what an honor!). She wrote an inspiring book called A Whisper in Winter .

Relevant Prose by author Mary DeMuth. Her book, Ordinary Mom, Extraordinary God, was just recently released. I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but intend to do so soon!

From those blogs above, you can find links to more great blogs. You definitely have a lot of reading to do!

Talk to you next week,

Lori Seaborg