Hannah and Madison

Hannah and Madison
Soccer stars....

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Ready or not, here come the women!

So, Olivia has seemed much like a woman to me for some time now.  She is, after all, 15.  The twins on the other hand, were still "little girls" until just recently.  Hannah is now 5' 7" tall....nothing little girl about that.  She is desirous of all things domestic.  "Teach me to cook"....seems to be her mantra!  "Can I help you make that?"....is another.  Madison, on the other hand has no desires toward domesticity.  She would much rather be watching TV or playing volleyball!  Did I say she is in LOVE with VOLLEYBALL!  Every time I turn around she is softly handling the ball...in front of the TV.....She is a joy to be around.  She still loves to smile!

Olivia is in the midst of her most difficult year of high school.  Literature has been a daunting task for her, but she has met it full-on....getting an A- for her first trimester.  She was pleased.  Her load includes geometry, physics, latin, literature, history, orchestra, art, music and drama.  She also is a starter on her Varsity Volleyball team.  She is one busy girl.  I don't see her as much as I'd like, but she loves her school....

Where does the time go?  Seems yesterday we were wondering if I could go another day with the 16lbs. of twins in my stretching abdomen.  Now, they are thinking of their own careers...learning to find their way in this world full of difficulties.  We shape their minds the best we can....we pray for them....and they grow up.  Ready or not, here they come!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Spring has sprung.....ready or not!

The Jones family just LOVES spring!  Finally, after a long winter, we can dust off the tennis rackets, check out the bike situation, and bring out the roller blades!  The newness of life, all fresh and clean, reminds me of what Jesus did for us!  Washed us clean with His precious blood!  What a precious analogy of the newness of life in Him!

I was so far behind on yard work!  I never raked in the fall, so dead, composting leaves were all over the yard.  I thought I was doomed, but then we had a nice, dry spell, which made for an easy rake over the yard!  (Thanks Honey!)  Now, planting was at hand to bring some color to our green, green, green yard!  I was so ready to plant some flower baskets that I was out at 9:00 at night, with no light.  The next morning I discovered one oddly placed flower in the middle of another basket of a different kind!  It made me giggle!  We're never perfect in this life, just like that oddly placed flower.  I will try to use this analogy to help the girls understand better the free gift that Jesus gave;  the Perfect Lamb dying for the imperfect.  He took us, not when we were already clean, but had to make us clean!  I'm so grateful for that free gift, and I try to take every opportunity I see to show the girls about what He did for me.....and for them!  Oh the newness of life that came with that gift!  Sin no longer has a hold over me!  I am a new creation....just like the newness of spring....

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Let the training continue

Olivia is continuing to train her body for the purpose of running a better and better 400m race....She is starting to buffet her body for the purpose of athletics.  But today we had training of another kind;  training that is much more painful than any "hills" workout....I'm talking about the buffeting of the body that leads to righteousness.  I have been trying to share my own sin struggles with the girls to let them know that everything they struggle with is not uncommon to my fleshly vessel.  And those same struggles were not uncommon to our perfect Saviour.  He knows everything that we go through in this life and is here for us.  AMAZING!  When we're in the "heat" of the fire, however, it's not so easy to see that, "Mama has made these same kinds of sin choices....I understand."  or that Jesus wants us to look more and more like Him, "and dying to our flesh is painful".  The things we want to do we can no longer do if we want to please our Master.  He deserves it all.....no matter what the price.

I hope I can teach them by example more and more.  It is, after all, the most effective learning tool I have!  I desire to show them Jesus by my life more than simply "telling" them how to live the Christian life.  I pray each day that Jesus will give me more and more of HIS wisdom...and less and less of mine.  The world wants to swallow them up....I won't let that happen willingly.....

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Are they really twins?

From the beginning, Hannah and Madison have been as different as night is to day.  As you can see from this photo, their physical differences are tremendous....but it doesn't stop there!  I love that I have two completely different children who just happened to be born at the same time!  Hannah is more cuddly and sensitive.  Madison is more independent and out-going.  We just got measured and at 11 years of age Hannah measured 5' 7" while Madison came in at 4' 11".  As you can see, Hannah looks more like her daddy than Madison....guess she got his height genes as well....
This is them at 4 1/2 years getting ready to play soccer.  Hannah was more nervous about doing something wrong....but oh those long legs could run!  Madison was so aggressive she was stiff-arming other little kids and scored like 9 goals her first game....how she loves sports!  Her greatest goal is to do everything well.  It's not an easy lot in life, to have that internal drive.  Failure is not an option in her book.  She will have many lessons along the way.  I work to try to teach her that God cares more about what is in our hearts and how we treat others, than how smart we are, or if we are the best volleyball player around.  It will be fun to see what they desire to become in this life.  Hannah talks about being a wife, mom and beautician; admirable jobs all.  Madison has the goal of being a veterinarian (at this early stage).  She says she only wants to adopt babies, because "childbirth is too painful".  I remember being there when I was young--afraid of the unknown.  It's great to be able to comfort their hearts with truth from God's word.  Motherhood comes in so many different ways throughout the day....I'm learning to mother in different "ways" with each of my girls.  They're as different as night and day....and I wouldn't want them any other way!

Technology....ain't it grand?

I have a serious love/hate relationship with technology.  I love my computer, but the second there's a problem, I'm lost.  I don't know how to "defrag" my computer without help.  I don't know how to fix any problems at all!  I am a professional, however, at surfing the web, shopping, making posters and cards.  Everything else, I really am not competent in at all!  The girls have gotten ipod touches with some money they saved.  They just love to send text messages to each other and their cousins.  Part of me has to "let go" of them into the world of technology, but I also don't want to see them become the kid who sits at a basketball texting people the whole time.  It's a difficult balance....But God knows how tickled I am when the girls text each other things like, "I miss you"....or "I love you".  Can it really get any better than that?  People tell me when my kids leave the nest that texting will be my easiest way to communicate with them.....I guess I'd better start learning how, because to be honest, I've never texted in my life!  I wouldn't even know how!  I like to hang onto my world of ignorance as long as I can.  I only do technology on an "as-needed" basis.  Well, I have 3 years until Olivia heads off to college....learning to text can wait....for now!  Then again, perhaps she'll live at home and go to college nearby.  One just never knows!

Friday, March 25, 2011

I love it when they still show they "need" me.....

I have to go to Chicago tonight for one night.  Miche bag is having a convention that my group is going to attend.  Hannah has been pretty anxious for a couple of days now.  "When are you going?"......and, "Is the weather supposed to be ok?"....are just some of her questions.  (She's nervous about weather whenever we won't be around....and even when we are around!).  Hannah has a lot of little fears.  I regularly work at providing comfort to her by sharing truth about how God cares for us and that we have to trust Him for all things.  Sometimes she'll wake in the night with these fears.  It breaks my heart.  But it also gives me tender moments to bond with her in ways that might not otherwise be so readily available.  Laying with her...rubbing her back while I talk to her about God's perspective on life, fears and concerns brings about a closeness between us that might not otherwise be achieved.  It's special for us.  I hope Hannah grows steadily in trusting God for her fears.  He is trustworthy.  In the meantime, I'll continue to rub her back, sing, "As the deer" to her and talk to her about God.  I'm so thankful He provides all we need!  "You alone are my strength my shield:  to You alone may my spirit yield"

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Growing up is so painful....especially for the Mama....

Olivia is 14 1/2.  Need I say more?  Don't get me wrong.  She's a beautiful, thoughtful young woman with a compassionate heart.  Her teachers sum it up each year when they usually say almost the exact same thing about her:  "She likes everybody and everybody likes her".  You'll be hard-pressed to find anyone she's ever offended (apart from her younger sisters:)  She loves Jesus, her mom and dad, her sisters and 4-legged creatures of the cat and dog variety....even Llamas!

So why is it so painful for me to watch her grow up?  I know it's God's plan for them to become more and more self-sufficient.  I know that in time she'll need us less so she can learn to take care of herself.  But it hurts.....
Seeing her go off to spend time with her cousins rather than wanting to spend the evening with me.  "What am I...chopped liver?".....ahhhh, such is a teenager's life.....