Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Taking a Break

Oops!  Yesterday was Monday, wasn't it??  ;)  

I apologize, but I totally forgot about my Marriage Monday Link-Up!  

I'm here in South Carolina staying with my precious parents for a few days. In all likelihood, this will be my Mom's last Christmas on this earth . . . although, her hope is to be with her Savior before Christmas!

By the time I get home, the Christmas celebration will be in full swing at my house!  And we have a busy week of work to be accomplished during the week between Christmas and New Years.

So, with all I have going on, I've decided to take a blogging break through the end of the year.  As you've probably noticed, I've been struggling to keep up with my blog these last few weeks anyway.

This will give me a chance to step back, reevaluate and reflect and consider what direction I want to take in the new year.  Should I continue this blog?  Or redirect my time and energies elsewhere?  Based on what I know now, I anticipate that the new year will contain some significant changes and challenges.  My resources will be stretched in many ways.  So, I'm praying for God's direction, provision, and peace as I prepare for the upcoming year.

To you, my dear readers and friends -- may you have a blessed Christmas and may you also seek God's direction, protection, and provision for the upcoming year.  We never know what a year holds -- or even what a day holds for that matter -- but He does!  He promises to go before us preparing the way, to never leave us or forsake us, and to work all things together for our ultimate good!  As I've recently been challenged to remember -- our God doeth all things well!!

See you in January . . . .

Monday, December 10, 2012

Marriage Monday: Loving Your Husband with a Long-term Illness {Link up}

Marriage Mondays

Welcome back to Marriage Monday!  Two weeks ago, I directed your attention to a powerful post that I discovered which shared 30 Creative Ways to Show Love to our Husbands.  That post got me thinking about the topic of loving our husbands, which I plan to explore for the next few weeks.  Last week, I shared about Loving our Husbands When They are Sick.   I really appreciated several of you sharing specific ways that you and your spouse care for each other when illness strikes.

But, what about when that sickness is not just a stomach bug or a yearly bout with the flu, but a long-term, chronic illness??  How do you show love for your husband then??

While I cared for my husband after he broke his back in a bad wreck several years ago, that was only for a 12-week period.  I also helped care for his mother when she lived with us during her final years of life, but she remained able to do much of her own self-care during that time.  (I must say that I believe nothing shows love to your husband more than caring for his mother with as much tenderness as you would care for your own mother!!)  

That being said, I really don't have any personal experience with the day-in/day-out care of a spouse who is terminally ill or disabled and requires long-term physical care.   However, I know that some of you do, and I hope that you will help me out here by sharing what you've learned of that kind of agape love!
I have been blessed to observe this kind of love in action.  My grandmother (my Mom's mother) lovingly cared for her husband with MS for many years, even when he was bedridden and could not take care of any of his own needs.  She bathed him, fed him, cleaned up his messes, changed his catheter, and took care of his every need for many years until his death.  She also took care of his father until he died from cancer. She was a strong, hard-working, no-nonsense type of person, who just did what had to be done, whether she felt like it or not, out of a simple faith and sincere love for the Lord.

I've also witnessed the way my mother and father cared for my Dad's mother and father in their final years, and how my Dad now cares for my dear mother, who has MS like her father, as well as heart failure from a damaged aortic valve, which was caused by her reoccurring bouts with rheumatic fever as a girl. Can I say here that my Dad has never been a very compassionate person?? He has always been a "good" man -- hard-working, frugal, honest, moral -- even before he came to know the Lord.  But, he was never what I would call compassionate, tender, or "loving."  He was more of the "I told you once that I love you, and if that ever changes I'll let you know" variety!  ;) However, it is amazing to see what God has done in his heart and life! My Dad cares for my Mom with so much love and tenderness!  It really blesses me to see how God is enabling him to love and care for my Mom in a way that I never thought possible for him!

That also gives me hope that if I'm ever called to lay down my life for my husband by caring for all of his physical needs for an extended period of time that God would give me the grace to do so!  

My Mom and Dad, March 2012

I'm also deeply touched and inspired by Ian and Larissa's testimony! If you want to see agape love in action, watch Larissa!  She amazes me every time I watch this video!!

Your Turn to Share:

If you have a testimony of caring for your husband long term due to an accident or disability or terminal illness, I would love for you to share here!!!  I'm especially interested in hearing how God met you at your point of need, how He gave you unconditional love, how He provided compassion, tenderness, patience, joy, strength, how He took your weakness and replaced it with His strength.  Please share so that we might all be encouraged!!! 

If you were blessed or encouraged by this post, please consider sharing it with your friends on Facebook or other social media sites.  Thank you!

Link up:

I'd love to have you link up your blog to mine!  Please link up any past or present posts related to Christian marriage.  Don't forget to link back to my blog!  Thanks!



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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Joy to the World (at the Mall)

Tiffany has found the perfect side job for the Christmas season -- she is being paid to play the piano at the mall!!!  :)

So, last weekend, Hannah and Bethany and I popped in at the mall to surprise her and to leave a tip in her tip jar!  :)  

It was fun listening to her serenade the shoppers!

I love this pic of my oldest and my youngest together -- the Fun Fashionista and the Fiesty Tomboy!!  :)

And then there's "the Blonde" -- my crazy, "crafty," creative, fun-loving daughter, Hannah!  (At first glance she may appear quiet and shy, but don't let her fool you!!!  ;)

And this is Tiffany after four hours of playing Christmas music!  :)

Click on the Play button if you'd like to hear a sample of the Christmas Joy that Tiffany shared with these shoppers!  

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The 12 Deals of Christmas -- Lilla Rose Style!

If you've been wanting to try a Lilla Rose flexi-clip, for yourself, a family member, or a friend, now's the perfect time!

I have some amazing deals running through December that I want to share with you.  I've already shared these on my Lilla Rose Facebook page and on my personal Facebook page.  (If we're not already "friends" in that realm, I invite you to connect with me there!)  I wanted to make sure and share them here as well!

Love this beautiful hairstyle easily created with a pony elastic and a flexi-clip!

Here are my 12 Deals of Christmas!

The important thing to understand is that only one of each deal is available! The first person to snag the deal gets it!!  So, you will have to act fast if you want one!  In fact, one deal has already been claimed, and another one is very close . . . 

#1 - Place a $30 order and receive a $5 Target gift card.

#2 - Place a $40 order and receive a $5 Starbucks gift card.

#3 - Place a $50 order and receive a coupon that you can redeem for a FREE flexi-clip (up to $16 value).   CLAIMED!  This deal is no longer available!

lovely poinsettia clip

#4 - Place a $60 order and receive a FREE ruffle scarf (color of your choice).

#5 - Place a $70 order and receive a FREE set of bobbies (consultant's choice).

#6 - Place a $80 order and receive a FREE set of hair sticks (consultant's choice).

#7 - Place a $90 order and receive a FREE headband (consultant's choice).

#8 - Place a $100 order and receive the December flexi-of-the-month (your choice of size).

#9 - Place a $125 order and receive a FREE ruffle scarf and coordinating small flexi-clip (your choice).

#10 -Place a $150 order and receive any two of the above items FREE (your choice).

#11 -Enroll as a consultant and receive a FREE package of 100 styling sheets or 50 Lillalook brochures.

This is how it works:

1.  Go to my Lilla Rose website and take a look around.  When you have selected the items you would like to order, place your order.  (Make sure you see my greeting to verify you are on my website.)

2.  Make sure your order equals or exceeds the required amount for the deal you are trying to snag.

3.  Email me at elizabeth@yestheyareallours.com and tell me which deal you are claiming.  

4.  If you are the first person to claim that deal, it is yours!!  :)

5.  Jump up and down with excitement and start anticipating the arrival of your Lilla Rose order and your special prize!  ;)

Click here to start shopping!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Marriage Monday: Loving Your Husband When He is Sick {Link up}

Marriage Mondays

Welcome back to Marriage Monday!  Last week we looked at creative ways to show love to our husbands.  Did you try any of those out this week??  I think I'm going to continue to explore the topic of loving our husbands in the weeks ahead, as the Lord leads.  Today, I want to discuss loving our husbands when they are sick. 

While it may be nothing more than a bad cold, my husband is currently sick.  I don't know about your guys, but the men in my family like to be "cared over" when they are sick!  ;)  They like a little extra attention and fussing over!

In fact, most of us are like that.  When we are sick, we feel weak and vulnerable, and we like to know that someone loves us enough to take care of our needs and to provide our little comforts. I was recently part of a conversation where a group of women were saying that even as adults, when they got sick, all they really wanted was their Mommies! :)  Why is that?  Obviously, their mothers must have cared for them and nurtured them when they were sick, making them feel loved and cherished.  (As an aside, hopefully we are doing this for our children!)

So, instead of making fun of our husbands for being such "babies" when they are sick, or resenting the inconvenience or extra work their illness may cause, how can we expend a little extra effort and make our husbands feel loved and cared for when they are under the weather??  

It may just be little things like getting them an extra blanket, taking a blanket away, getting them some medicine, fixing them a soothing hot or cold drink, putting a cold washcloth on their foreheads, trying to keep the children quiet so they can sleep, making them a pot of nourishing chicken soup, etc.  However, these little things add up and make our husbands feel loved and appreciated, which in turn make them love and appreciate us even more.
What are some ways that you care for your husband when he is sick?  How does he care for you??

I'm going to share a story with you that has vividly replayed in my mind for many years.  About 14 or 15 years ago, we attended a church in a certain city, and although I liked the pastor a lot, there came a day that I lost a great deal of respect for him.  You see, his wife and his children all came down sick with the flu.  They were very sick, and I expected him to be home as much as possible caring for his family and ministering to their needs; however, he unabashedly told the congregation that he had moved into the church and was sleeping there, because he had to be about the Lord's work and couldn't afford to get sick!!  I couldn't believe my ears! The Lord's work is ministering to others at their point of need!!!  What happened to laying down his life for his wife, as Christ did for the church??
"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it."  ~ Ephesians 5:25

That situation is indelibly stamped in my mind as what not to do when a spouse is sick!!  Of course none of us have time to be sick, and there may be special circumstances when it is wise to avoid exposure to illness, but the Christian response is to lay down our lives for others, serving them in love!  
 " . . . but by love serve one another." ~ Galations 5:13

Your Turn to Share:

How do you serve your husband in love when he is sick?  How does your husband serve and care for you in times of illness??  Please share!!! 

If you were blessed or encouraged by this post, please consider sharing it with your friends on Facebook or other social media sites.  Thank you!

Link up:

I'd love to have you link up your blog to mine!  Please link up any past or present posts related to Christian marriage.  Don't forget to link back to my blog!  Thanks!



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