christinarenee

Do you ever feel you're not ure where God is in the midst of the your life?

How I Know God is Real

I have been through a lot in my life. Marriage, divorce, marriage. Children, miscarriages, children. Loss of a grandchild. Numerous hospital stays, numerous car accidents. Physical therapy, occupational therapy, surgery after surgery. More than 30. Sepsis-twice, house fire-twice.The ER doctor telling me to call in my family. My doctor telling me to get affairs in order. That she’s never had a patient live even 5 years. But, I know God is real. Because He has met me in each of these places. He has carried me through. I have seen Him. I have felt Him work in my life. I have felt Him carry me. And I know God is real. By the way, it’s been more than 5 years. I’ve had 3 instances where I shouldn’t have made it. But God is the one who has numbered my days, not doctors. And I still have more to do for Him.

Why Not Me?

I have had family members ask ” Why would God put you through all this? You follow Him and He does this?” My answer is “why not?” Why do we think believers are supposed to be immune to suffering? Matthew 5:45b says –For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike.

Blessings

Blessings from Raindrops

So if I am blessed with the sun, aren’t I also blessed with the rain? Even though I do believe this, I don’t always like it. But, He has been there every step of the way. God has been my comfort and my refuge. He is the One I turn to not only in times of trouble but daily and some days hourly. Somedays I call upon him to help through surgery but more often it’s “Help me reach this child. Give me the energy to deal with this situation. God, what shall I make for dinner? Who do you want me to talk to? What shall I say?”. God is there to help me in all situations.

Mountain Top Experience or Valley Growth

I once heard a speaker at a women’s conference talking about a mountain top experience. “Everyone wants a mountaintop experience but no one wants to be in the valley. But nothing grows in the mountaintop. All the growth is in the valley.” And I want growth. I want to know more. I want to be closer to God. But growth isn’t easy. It makes you question what you think you know. Do I really want to know all of Jesus? Do I want to share in His sufferings? My first thought is NO. But I do want to be closer to Him. What it takes is going through it. It makes you lean into the Son. And that makes it all worth it.

Knowing God is There

Isaiah 43:2 says: When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. Notice it doesn’t say if you go through these things, it says when. Everyone goes through something. You might as well plan for it. It will happen. Now, a better thing to plan for is what you will do then. God will be there for you to turn to. But will you? Or will you rail at Him for sending these things? Will you make Him your refuge? Or will Netflix, hobbies, anger or despair be your constant companion? God is the One who will be with you, if you only turn to Him.

Life is Hard

Surgery is hard. Miscarriage is hard. Marriage is hard. Children are hard. Fires are hard, Life is hard. And that’s why we need God. I need God to go through the hard. Because we will go through the hard things in life. Whether it’s just the day to day grind of parenting or house fires, sepsis, and surgeries. God is there to help you with the hard things. He is there to carry you, to bear your pain, to comfort you. I know God is real.

My Help Comes From You Lord

A friend called this the Mommy song. Because as mommys we call on Him many, times a day. Psalms 121.1 I will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains, from whence cometh my help.” I actually found it and have it below. But there have been so many many times. I’ve sung this and called out to God. He is only waiting on you to call upon Him too. And I know God is Real. He is here, waiting…


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Looking for great dates but don't have the cash? Here's ideas to try.

Great Date Nights That Don’t Break The Bank

It’s so fun to go out on a fantastic out of this world date with my honey. But there’s a lot of weeks that we just don’t have the money and still want to go out. So here’s a list of great dates nights that don’t break the bank. .

Go to the Park

The park isn’t just for kids. We’ve have some great dates on a picnic. We bring most or all our food. Sometimes we’ll get Subway and bring the rest and just sit and talk. We can walk on trails that they have there and hold hands. It might not be the most romantic place but it’s still really nice.

Groupon

I know I’ve listed them before but Groupon has great date nights for very little money. You can get restaurants cheap or look into things to do and go ziplining or go to a shooting range or a cooking class. There’s also beauty and relaxation, so grab a massage or a gym class.

Walk, Bike or Stroll

A great way to spend time together with the added bonus of being physically active. Find an activity you like, that you can still talk through, and do it together. It could be walking, biking, yoga or any other activity.

Find a Hobby Together

I had a friend who loved to fish with her husband. Now, I can’t figure out why that would be fun, but she loved it. We garden and can together. Sometimes, we cook together. You can find many other things to do. Painting, woodworking, crafting, photography, and I’m sure there are many more than I can even think of. You can even find classes to take online to take together. I love Skillshare for learning new things.

Game Night

Pull out some old board games or learn a new one. When my husband and I were dating we used to play Gin Rummy. I thought we might brush up on the rules and there are hundreds of card games you can learn.

What other things do you do together?

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Creative ideas to show love without spending a lot of money.

Showing Love on a Budget

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and this year money is tight. When special occasions come and your budget is in short supply, sometimes you feel like it’s hard to celebrate the day without having a lot of money. You don’t know if showing love on a budget is possible. And you’re not sure if you should try. Celebrate anyway. Giving to someome else comes from the heart, not the checkbook. There still are a lot of things you can do but the trade-off is that it will take more time. But you can do it.

Be Creative

I love The Dating Diva’s site for so many different printable that you can print off for free or very reasonable. One year I bought empty pill capsules and then wrote little things I loved about him and put them in the capsules with instructions for 1 a day. But you could do the same thing with a deck of cards or a letter. You could fill out a coupon book or write letters. Your imagination is the limit.

Cook or Bake Something

For Valentines day, have a pink and red food theme. We’ve had pink pancakes, and heart shaped cooked eggs for breakfast. Tomato soup with little heart shaped cut croutons. You can use heart shaped cookie cutters on just about everything. I have a heart shaped bundt pan that makes a great red velvet cake. But if there’s a favorite recipe make that. There are a lot of food that’s red and pink. Beets, tomatoes, apples, are just a few.

Going Away

It’s not true that you can’t go away on a budget. First decide if it’s an evening, a day trip or overnight. There are a lot of fun things to do on a budget. I love finding great deals for dinner or things to do on Groupon. You could find a romantic dinner or go play laser tag. There’s usually something for everyone. They also have getaways that can be more than half off. You can also get meal discounts at Restaurant.com or hotel nights on Hotwire.

Do a Project for or with Them

If they have something they’ve needed to be done, surprise them and do it. Organize a drawer, sew something, repair something that’s broke. Do a home project or cook together. Our neighborhood grocery store has cooking classes, check yours. Or you can cook their favorite meal. Maybe set up a bubble bath or a back massage. Fill your room with candles.

Showing Love To Children

Some of the above tips can be used with children. My children love pink heart pancakes and heart-shaped pizza. Beets, not as much. Of course, almost any dessert goes well. But you can buy or do little things for your children that make them feel special. The Dollar Tree has so many cute pencils, erasers, treats, play-doh and more. Have a special ice cream night or a tea party with lemonade and cookies. Give them a Valentine or write them a note. Spend time with them.

What other ideas do you have for showing love on a budget?

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Making One on One Time with Your Children

One on One Time with Your Children

As a mom of many children, it can be hard to get one on one time with your children. I have found you have to make time for it as it doesn’t appear, you have to make the effort.

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Look for Little Minutes

As nice as it would be to get large chunks that’s not always realistic. So I try and also use the little blocks of time. A few minutes here and there is not ideal but sometimes there are seasons when it’s hard to find one on one time. Right after I had surgery, one of the kids usually brought me my meal. I asked them to sit a few minutes and talk. Sometimes they would bring their meal and eat with me. When checking rooms I’ll stop and ask a few questions about what’s going on for them. When they ask question, ask them back. Show you’re interested. It’s easy to get busy and not think about it.

Doing Errands

I make it a point to take one child with me for errands. We spend time and talk in the car. Sometimes, we’ll stop for a bite or a drink. As nice as it is to get time alone, I need to remember the time I have with them is fleeting. I only have 2 school age children now. My time remaining with them is short. I remember when I had lots of little ones and it felt like it would never end. It does. So quickly and them you are left with memories and not regrets.

Weekly Books

I have a book I’m going through Girl Talk with my daughter and my husband is going through Created for Work with my son. We go through a short chapter a couple times a week and talk about the chapter and whatever else comes up. We also have a question book we pass back and forth. She writes in it and then I do. Sometimes words are hard and writing is easier.

Special Times

Don’t forget to set up special occasion times. Birthdays, young ladies teas, special meals or just because you know they need it. With one daughter, we went on walks. That’s when she loved to talk. With another it was baking. You need to find what makes them tick. They need to be relaxed to open up.

What’s your favorite way to make one on one time with your children?

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New Resouce Library

Today is a really short post. I am so pleased to be able to offer you access to my free library for subscribers. Just add your email to the pop up to get your free access to this library. There are motivational quotes and checklists and free printables. Please let me know what else you would like.

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