Loosing teeth and multitasking

My 9 year old has lost 3 teeth since Friday! He's growing so fast.
I was thinking about how loosing our teeth may be one of God's ways of saying, "You have to be humbled before you can be lifted up." We go from strong, meat ripping teeth, to gums, funny faces and childish lisps before we get permanently strong chompers. Even when our strong, permanent meat-rippers come in, and we think we're strong and grown up, as Brennan Manning wrote:

... God has ordained the later days of our lives to look shockingly similar to that of our earliest: as dependent children. -from All Is Grace: A Ragamuffin Memoir

There's a debate in our house about whether multitasking is a skill or a disability.

Some say I'm not a good multitasker and I should work on being a better one.  I SAY that, I said that last night, and then went looking for data on how to improve your multitasking ability.

What I found would have seemed self-serving if I had set out to find proof that being a multitasker is not a good thing.  I'm really not trying to present evidence to justify my tendency to forget things, burn dinner while balancing my checkbook, and get frustrated when I'm talking on the phone and someone in the room asks me if the dinner I'm cooking is just for me or for everyone.   Honestly, I was beginning to believe that I really have a problem, some mental illness or vitamin deficiency.  But what I found is overwhelming proof that I don't multitask well because my brain isn't designed to multitask well.  

I found that multitasking really disables one's ability to any of the multiple things they are doing really well.  So for the person who prides themselves on being a great multitasker, the science says they would be so much more excelling at the multiple tasks they are trying to do at once if they would concentrate better on one task at a time.  I also found that these people in my life who I've idolized as great multitaskers are actually probably great task jugglers.  They really are only doing one task at a time but are able to quickly and efficiently switch from one task to another without "dropping" any.

So I've diagnosed myself with trying to juggle too many things at once secondary to a weakness in concentration.  If I actually learn to limit the amount of tasks I'm juggling, check my calendar first thing every morning and PUT things on my calendar (not on random pieces of paper), make lists and give one task my full attention, I should be able to switch to another task without dropping the first one... or burning it.  I could also do with a little bit of mental fitness and memory training!

I have a LOT of things I want to do.  Maybe I need to get a list journal...

Wherever you are, be all there! Live to the hilt every situation you believe to be the will of God.- Jim Elliot


Favorite shots from Malibu area

I think these are pelicans (actually I keep calling them blue heron but my hubby says they're pelicans).  They kept flying over the shoreline in groups and getting REAL close to the waves.  So purposeful and serene.  It was really cool!

Feet and Foam

Everytime I see the ocean chase its way up the beach and then run back out to sea I think of this from Job:

Then the LORD answered Job from the whirlwind:  "Who kept the sea inside its boundaries as it burst from the womb, and as I clothed it with clouds and wrapped it in thick darkness? For I locked it behind barred gates, limiting its shores. I said, 'This far and no farther will you come. Here your proud waves must stop!'- Job 38: 1,8-11
Treasure Hunting

James and the boys had a blast using their metal detector here.  Its fun to hunt for treasure!

American Picker Wannabes

We saw this house in the Santa Monica Mountains and felt like it might have been the house we saw in an episode of American Pickers once.  I think when we're old, we'll take our metal detector and RV and hit the road as pickers.  


Favorite shots from Coronodo Beach

Unsuspecting boy playing in sand.  Dad 10 feet away.
Unsuspecting boy hollers for his brother to check out the "gold" in the sand.  Dad gets an idea.
 Unsuspecting boy continues digging for "gold".  Dad moves in for his move.
Unsuspecting boy bends further for more gold.  Dad places foot in position for boy-tipping.
 Boy lands, turns fast to see what knocked him over.  Finds dad with mischievious "chase me" face.
Boy chases dad with handful of "gold" sand.

One of my greatest joys is watching my boys play together.  All three of them.


“A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you control it.” – John Steinbeck

We've been gone for 17 days on our annual trek to Northern Cali and Southern Oregon.  It feels like "three months"- as my youngest announced today.  We made a ton of memories.  I wanted to blog my way through the trip, by posting each day, but Internet wasn't always available and when it was it was dreadfully slow.  It was kind of nice to take a hiatus from the Internet, blogging, facebook, etc.  But staying caught up on writing and email I think might out way that long of a technology vacation.  Especially for a must-second-live-everything-by-journaling type of person like me.  Now I feel sort of mentally constipated.  Too much to try and catch up.  So I won't. I'll let the pictures do the talking (most of which I posted on Facebook).

Spiritually I grew on this trip.  I finished a probably-controversial book on the road trip to Oregon by Brennan Manning- All Is Grace, A Ragamuffin Memoir.  It was controversial to me!  It challenged me to see that my life speaks a message of utter reliance on the grace of God that saves me through the Lord Jesus Christ.  Our lives are all pock-marked and twisted by our sin or other people's sin.  None of us earns any of God's grace.  All my life should simply be a response to the priceless, yet freely given grace of God.  Every one of us lives in this grace everyday.  

 He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. - Matthew 5:45 
The book, some recent teachings from the Bible, and a glance back over my life also got me thinking, "Which is true? Sinner or Saint?"  Am I a sinner saved by grace, thirsting daily for true rightness, hungering to be who Christ is making me to be?  Or am I a righteous one, a saint, perfect, complete, a daughter of the King, a daughter of God?  YES!  

They're two sides of the same coin.  You must be a sinner to be made a saint.  You must hunger for righteousness to be filled with righteousness.  But I find (and this may not be good theology, just my experience) that when I focus on the daughter of the King view of who I am, I start to get spiritually snooty.  And there is no place for spiritual snootiness in the grace of God that takes me from sinner to saint.

God has titled me with titles I have not earned.  He has called me what I am not.  But that is the grace of God that I live in,  breathe and am thankful for everyday.  It is the very grace that saves me!

God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did. - Romans 4:17

I love how John Newton said it:

Although my memory's fading, I remember two things very clearly: I am a great sinner and Christ is a great Savior

I lost my wallet on our trip!  Grrr.  I'm in the habit of taking my wallet out of the car with me to the pump at a gas station, rather than just taking out my debit card.  It's a habit I hope is broken after this experience.  

I was in the mountains on a country highway between Trinity Lake Center, CA and Yreka, CA.  I stopped on that highway in Etna, CA to get gas, hoping to make it to Yreka to fix the slow leak in my tire (which I noticed while my car was parked at the campground we had been at the previous 5 days).  I guess I took my wallet out and either left it on the pump or on the hood of my car, because after I paid for my gas, I drove on to Yreka and while trying to hunt up my wallet to pay for the fixed flat I realized it was nowhere to be found!  Thankfully the nice people at Les Schwabb in Yreka were planning to not charge me for the service anyway.  I drove back to Etna, 20 something miles away, and talked to the manager of the station, looked all along the roadside, on the pump and ground.... gone! Out of my control.  

Fortunately I did have my checkbook, which won't help when trying to cash a check with no I.D., but will help when writing a check out to a family member who can cash it for you.  Thanks mom!

I've spent yesterday and the better part of today getting caught up on ordering a duplicate license, new debit cards, grocery shopping, laundry and all that back-to-life business.  But my heart is longing for home.  My real home, where my real I.D. is, and the home of my parents, grandparents and my kids' aunts, uncles and nephews.  I'm thankful for the time I was able to spend with them, ever so short as it was.


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