Tag Archives: Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day Weekend

16 May

This is the day that the LORD has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it
Psalm 118:24

This time last week I was waking to the sound of a couple barking dogs and feeling refreshed after my long journey on the road. My iPhone and I left work on Thursday afternoon and arrived in my mom’s driveway several conversations later. Driving the long distance between my house in PA and hers in Indy is always improved as I talk to friends and family along the way.

It was December since I had last been with my momma – when she flew out to celebrate an early Christmas with our family … and an October birthday visit was the last time I had been in Indy. No matter how much time has passed, mom’s Chihuahuas, Ginger and Walker, always greet me at the door with an exuberant welcome! It felt good to be home … my childhood home, where my parents raised me and my brothers.

The moms and daughters at Steak & Shake

The moms and daughters at Steak & Shake

The weekend started out with a bunch of hugs and laughter when mom and I met my mother-in-law and sister-in-law for lunch Friday noon. The same fun-loving, silly mold was used for these two ladies and we’re always guaranteed a great visit! A celebration of Amy’s birthday made our time together even more special! Until next time, sweet ladies …

 

Aunt Debbie and Remington Kimber Wells

Aunt Debbie and Remington Kimber Wells

Another form of a birth day celebration was next on our agenda as we drove the few miles to my youngest brother’s home to meet my 6 day-old niece. Remington Kimber was bright-eyed and awake for our visit, giving plenty of opportunity for several photos to be taken. What a doll baby – lots of dark hair, pudgy little nose, and a sweet momma and proud papa besides!

 

Once back to the house, I ventured out to the garage to see how daunting my next task was going to be. 17 years ago when our family moved from PA to Albuquerque, we left several boxes for safe keeping … items we didn’t necessarily need right then, but didn’t want to get rid of, but knew we didn’t have the room to store them where we were going. Since I drove out, and since we’re finally buying a house that has plenty of room for such storage, [‘Buying a House’ … an upcoming blog] I began to open boxes of keepsakes … or not so keeping. Such mixed feelings overwhelmed me as I found mold and mildew that had wreaked havoc on some of the contents, creating a pile of trash instead of treasures. My favorite find was a particular set of 3 long boxes that I knew were filled with memories from my high school years, CB radio days, and mementos of young loves. Oh my! [‘Keepsake Treasures … or Not’ – another upcoming blog] Gratefully, the items that held most value to my heart were fine and I began to load my car till it was full and overflowing – barely leaving enough room for travel bags and driver! The grandkids will be excited to find some ‘new’ toys to add to their assortment of playthings at Mimi and Papaw’s house – but probably not as excited as their mom and Uncle Ryan will be! Care-A-Lot car and castle, complete with all of the Care Bear gang … Hot Wheels, Match Box cars, and even a Tonka truck or two!

 

Mother's Day with my momma

Mother’s Day with my momma

TV shows, computer updates, and enjoying the front porch swing filled in the gaps between projects and family time. 15 of us gathered for dinner on Saturday evening, laughing at the antics of 2 year-old Jaxon as we all took turns cuddling Baby Remi.

 

Mother’s Day was filled to the brim – an unexpected and extremely special visit from Louisiana, [‘Joe Talhelm … a Film Documentary’ …  another upcoming blog!] church service with family and friends, lunch out with my precious baby niece and her family, followed by my long drive home. It was a day that was without a doubt ordained by God … a gift. I’m trying my best to always seize the moment – to appreciate every aspect of the day, giving praise to the One who raises and sets the sun. Won’t you join me in seizing each moment … every morsel of time … and every blessing?

Until next time,
Debbie

** If you are interested in viewing all of the pictures from my recent trip to Indy that I posted on Facebook,
feel free to click this link … whether you have Facebook or not … enjoy!!

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202527516323935.1073741854.1076414018&type=1&l=0aaf67d0b2

Mom in the Middle

17 May

But Mary treasured up all these things
and pondered them in her heart.
Luke 2:19

 

Even though this past weekend was full of fun times and lots of Mimi/Mom love, the ultimate Mother’s Day celebration started in my heart a month ago when our entire family gathered in Baltimore for several days.

Our 2nd airport pick-up!

Our 2nd airport pick-up!

The anticipation mounted for days as groceries were purchased, meals were prepared, gifts were wrapped, and beds were made.  Two trips to the airport completed our guest list as Ryan and Brittany arrived from Seattle and my mom flew in from Indianapolis for what we considered a montage of celebration … Christmas, birthdays, Mother’s Day, and Baby Lillie’s dedication.   And celebrate we did!  Regardless of holiday or occasion, family love is the best, and this Mommy’s heart was a sponge, soaking up every morsel possible … to tuck away for the weeks and months ahead.

After picking Ryan and Brittany up on day one, we loaded my van and took an afternoon trip up north to my everyday world.  Ryan wanted to see his dad before the weekend, so a tour of Tim’s workplace followed by an evening visit and a sleepover at Mimi and Papaw’s house completed our very busy day.  The following morning, long after Papaw had left for work, the day began to buzz with the busyness of playtime, a yummy leisurely breakfast and a timely departure to once again head to the airport.  It was now time to pick up Mimi Wells!  As always, she arrives bearing gifts for the little ones.  For the rest of us, her very presence is our gift … what a privilege to have my mother with me to enjoy my precious family.

Homemade biscuits and gravy greeted us all for breakfast on Friday morning, taking advantage of the fact that Mimi Wells was among us!  Playground and a duck pond, a trip to the shopping mall, Papaw’s arrival, and Kim and Troy’s stromboli for dinner completed another family fun day!

Christmas & Birthday in April!!

Christmas, Birthdays and  Mother’s Day in April!!

Saturday was full and overflowing with excitement and anticipation!  Ryan and Brittany prepared the traditional Christmas breakfast of green chili breakfast burritos…and yes, I did say Christmas.  Since our northwest kids spent the not-so recent holiday with Brittany’s family in Spokane, we postponed our own family celebration until now.  We also had a few birthday gifts included in the mound of secrecy, celebrating Ryan and Cole’s March birthdays and Lillianne the end of April.  I believe there were even a couple Mother’s Day gifts, too!  Presents were appropriately wrapped in their unique festive wear, and then clustered underneath a creatively drawn and colored Christmas tree.  A potpourri of gifts were given and received … and great fun was had by all!!

Cousins and their kids...Jason, Jax, Lillie and Kim

Cousins and their kids…Jason, Jax, Lillie, and Kim

We suddenly had to switch gears, literally … and travel 30 minutes, which was half-way to Washington DC to meet up with my nephew and his family for lunch.  They were in town from Indianapolis to meet their newborn nephew, so they accepted our invitation for the cousins and kids to all see one another.  With 3 kids under the age of 4, what better place than a nearby playground to spend some extra time after lunch!  Even the big kids had fun playing on the swings, slides, and see saws!

Our family at Lillie's dedication

Our family at Lillie’s dedication

Sunday was a very special day for our family as we all stood beside Lillianne’s parents as they presented her to the Lord in dedication.  As I listened to the words of their Pastor, I was taken back in time to two separate occasions when Tim and I stood with our families with a tiny newborn in our arms.  So long ago, we too made promises to God that we would raise our two children up to know and love Jesus.  With tears in my eyes, I am reminded of those sacred moments every time we witness another baby dedication … and this time was no exception.  As our own little granddaughter, beautiful in her special dress, was held and prayed over that morning, joy filled my heart as I realized that her parents, we her family, and this church would truly do all we could to ensure that Lillie understands what it means to walk in the way of Jesus and to entrust her life to Him.

Grandma and Pop Arndt joined us on this special day, filling the dining room table to capacity as we all gathered for yet another tasty meal.  When the excitement of the day began to settle and the guests had all gone home, the realization hit that our time together was quickly coming to an end.  We migrated into the kitchen where we simply sat around talking, laughing, discussing, telling stories … just to be together, with no distractions.  Finally, extra suitcases were brought out so the Christmas and birthday gifts could be added to the take-home luggage.  Thank goodness for Southwest Airlines and their ‘bags fly free’ policy!!

As always, family time ALWAYS comes to an end too quickly.  With my van loaded with precious cargo, I headed back to the airport early Monday morning … only this time to say “until next time!”  To hold, hug, and kiss each of my loved ones … I longed to stay in that moment, but I knew that life was waiting for them on the other side of their flights.  I had to let go.

Mimi and her loves in Annapolis, MD

Mimi and her loves in Annapolis, MD

That day was nearly a month ago now.  As we all know, life doesn’t take a holiday nor does it slow down.  The calendar announced Mother’s Day last weekend … and we did celebrate.  A week ago this morning, I drove down to Baltimore, where Kim, the kids, and I spent the day at Dock City in Annapolis ~ walking along the water’s edge, touristy shopping in the many establishments, and tasting yummy treats throughout the day.  Then on Saturday, mother and daughter attended a ladies’ tea at Grace Pointe Nazarene, where Kim was the hostess of our Hawaiian-themed table.  After dinner out that evening with Papaw, Mimi came back home.  The fun weekend with my loves was a wonderful closure to a celebration that started back in April.   Having the privilege of us all being together for those few short days was a gift to my own heart that will last forever.

I am the Mom in the middle.  My heart swells with an inexpressible love, honor, and respect for my precious mother … and the deepest gratitude to her and Daddy for raising me in a home where I knew I was loved and most importantly, that Jesus loved me.  Then my heart is humbled and in awe of the miracles of life that have literally come from God, through me.  The deep deep love for my own two children will always grip the depth of my soul and keep me on my knees for them until I die.  And the loves of their life have wrapped themselves around my heart and have captured my affections.  And now there is Cole and Lillianne.  I am the Mom in the middle … what a blessed place to be.  I have great reason and cause for celebration!!

I’m beginning to realize that we should be celebrating Jesus and Christmas every day.  Jesus and Easter every day.  Moms and Mother’s Day every day.  Won’t you join me today in living a life of continual celebration of what really counts?

Until next time,
Debbie

This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24

If you would like to see the entire album I posted to Facebook on this wonderful family time, please click here … https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10200291340340933.1073741829.1076414018&type=1&l=b1e084fd75

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A Mother’s Day Prayer

8 May

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
3 John 1:4

Happy Mother’s Day!

Moms sacrifice body, emotions, and mental stability in order to nurture and love another human being.  There are as many different scenarios as there are moms.  Every unique experience  could be written and sold as a best seller to those in their own world.  The following is a borrowed story, penned by a dear friend a few years ago on Mother’s Day.  His short narrative tugs at my own heart strings as I celebrate this special day in honor of my Mom and my own motherhood …

“Swept Away

There is a two hundred year old stream side mill in Allentown, New Jersey, known as the Black Forest Restaurant.  Featuring German cuisine, it is a favorite eatery for my wife.  So that is where we headed to celebrate Mother’s Day 2008.  Patsy has been and continues to be a great mom, and it is always a wonderful privilege to honor her.

Surrounding the restaurant are a variety of small shops filled with antique and artsy stuff.  They are a magnet for my wife.  Beyond the shops is a winding path that parallels a noble brook.  It is a magnet for me.  So we bid farewell to one another and became temporarily lost in our respective magnetic fields.

As I followed the wood-chipped walkway through springtime’s blossoming flora, I inhaled deeply the sweet elixir of wild rose and honeysuckle.  Blackbirds, robins and sparrows sang joyfully from behind leafy curtains.  I stopped to listen to the chorus of a favorite hymn, and that is when I heard the cry.

Baby Duck

Rapid-fire peep-chirps of distress were coming from somewhere upstream.  Listening to determine the precise location, I soon became aware that the source of the siren was approaching.   And just then, riding on the current, coming around the bend, floating down stream was recently hatched duckling.  Most likely this little peep had wandered too far from his brothers, sisters and mom and had been taken captive by the rushing madness of a storm swollen stream.

For the next twenty minutes I tried desperately to rescue the little fellow while the current whisked him farther from home.  Unfortunately the creek’s bank became too muddy and steep, and stream-side’s briars became impenetrable.  There was nothing left to do but stand and listen as the peep-chirps faded.

Following the path back to civilization I could not help but contemplate about Mother’s Day, families, and the currents of this world that too often sweep our own children into danger.

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.  Impress them on your children!”
Deuteronomy 6:5-7

Therein is our hope! 

Your servant in Christ – Pastor Bieber”  **

Mother’s Day is a special day of celebration!  Celebration of our moms for their love, their prayers, their care, and their gift of life to us.  It is also a day of celebration for the privilege and the awesome responsibility for the priceless and eternal gifts God gives to us as mothers.  This tender little story will always tug on my Mommy heart as I daily spend time on my knees for my children and their loves, just as I’m sure my own mother stays on her knees for me and my brothers and our families.  The undercurrents of life are strong, but there IS hope when we love the Lord our God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our strength.  Join me today as we celebrate our moms, and as we continue to pray for our families.

Until next week,
Debbie

** Del Bieber is Pastor at Tom’s River, New Jersey Churchof the Nazarene
You may subscribe to his written stories by contacting Pastor Del at trnazarene@juno.com
You may also subscribe to his podcast (you listen to him read his stories) at http://jerseypilgrim.blogspot.com
Thank you, Pastor Del!

Mother’s Day

8 May

Let all that I am praise the Lord;
With my whole heart, I will praise His holy name.
Let all that I am praise the Lord;
May I never forget the good things He does for me.
He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases.
He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies.
He fills my life with good things. 
My youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
Psalm 103:1-5    NLT

 

The infamous second Sunday in the month of May is upon us.  Flowers, cards, jewelry, and trinkets of all kinds fill the aisles of every store in America this week.  Reminders are everywhere that Mother’s Day is tomorrow.  I chuckle as this year is quite different for me since my mom fell and shattered her elbow 7 weeks ago.  She has been at the top of the priority list for weeks now, and I feel like I have already been celebrating this special holiday of honor with her on a regular basis!    

 My pre-holiday celebration is simply what one does when the heart is full of love.  My best friend from childhood is presently in Florida caring for her parents who have both recently become ill.  My mother-in-law is in New York filling the much needed role of mother and grandma as a new baby brother is patiently waiting to be delivered.  My own daughter, her husband and baby are going to spend Mother’s Day with the family of a fellow Marine who was killed in Afghanistan 5 years ago.  Various forms of love … various forms of celebration … very forms of honor.

Mom, Mammy and Uncle Marvin apx 1947

I would like to honor those in my life that have brought me to the place where I am today.  My mom’s mother, whom we affectionately called Mammy, was always a sweet and dear woman.  Mammy spent time with me in the kitchen baking wacky cakes, apple pies with homemade crusts,  and making homemade ice cream.  She listened to hours and hours of my playing her little electric table top organ  ~  no doubt praying the whole time that my apparent love for music would be used to glorify God someday.  Mammy sewed clothes for me … and for my Barbie.  I could go on and on about her … a real treasure to my own heart and to the legacy of who I am today.  Mammy went home to be with Jesus in January of 1992.

I have been reminded of your sincere faith,
which first lived in your grandmother
Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded,
now lives in you also.  For this reason I remind you
to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in youthrough the laying on of my hands.  For God did not
 give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power,
of love and of self-discipline.    
2 Timothy 1:5 -7

Mammaw & Pappaw Wells and family Apx 1957

 My Mammaw Wells was a woman of tenacity, courage, and grit.  She had to be. She raised 3 of Pappaw’s youngsters by his first wife, and birthed 14 of her own, of which 2 died as children.  My Daddy is the only adult who has passed away.  He’s the handsome one in the upper left corner.    Mammaw set a wonderful example of hospitality for me … always ready to throw some food on the stove to cook and would produce a feast for many to enjoy around her kitchen table.  With grandchildren nearly too many to count running through the front door, she would swat at a few behinds to coax them to quickly get in or out. It was always an adventure in Martinsville … not only to see Mammaw, but hoping for the spontaneous visit by another family full of cousins and fun.  My Mammaw passed away in January of 2003.

Mom with Jay & I 1960

Mother’s Day was celebrated for their first time by a sweet couple in love when my brother Jay was born in 1957… Mom and Daddy had been married for 15 months.  I added one more jewel in her crown of motherhood in 1960, followed by a diamond in the rough when my little brother Tim came along 6 years later.  Grandchildren and now great grandchildren have embedded her tiara with sparkles, as she wears it gracefully.  Words truly cannot express the depth of love and appreciation for my mother, but I can say that it is her faithful and consistent walk with Jesus that has set an example and a pattern for my brothers and I through the years.  We grew up knowing that Jesus loves us and that He desires a relationship with us.  Thank you, Mom, for being true and real  ~  even in the hard and difficult times.  I love you!

 

 

Join with others in following my example, brothers,
and take note of those who live according to the pattern we gave you.
For, as I have often told you before and now say again even with tears,
many live as enemies of the cross of Christ.  Their destiny is destruction,
their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame.
Their mind is on earthly things.  But our citizenship is in heaven.
And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 
who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control,
will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

Therefore, my brothers, you whom I love and long for,
my joy and crown, that is how you should stand firm in the Lord, dear friends!
Philippians 3:17 – 4:1.

Mom, my brothers & I 2008

My mother-in-law & I

Unlike many women, I have been blessed by my mother-in-law.  Having had a full and demanding life throughout the years of raising her own family, she is rich in wisdom, advise, and has learned to pray, love, and laugh in the midst of it all  ~  good and bad.  She is the woman who loved and nurtured a little boy who later became the one I have loved for almost 30 years now.  Thank you, mom, for embracing me as one of your daughters, for your love, and also for your walk with Jesus.

 

One Mother’s Day many years ago, my Daddy proudly expressed his hand-picked sentiments to my mom with the help of Hallmark.  As she opened the card and read the front, she tried to hide the giggle that kept pushing its way through her attempt at being serious.  In Daddy’s best effort at finding just the right card, he accidently picked up a greeting that looked like one he had just read but had put back on the rack … but this one wasn’t the same.  This one read “To Someone Who Has Been Like a Mother to Me.”  Daddy just couldn’t figure out how he goofed so bad, but it gave us a big laugh for years to come!  I’m sure you’re like me … we have those special women in our lives who are not blood related, but they hold a very precious place in our hearts.  They have ‘Been Like a Mother’ to us.  Since I have lived in several places throughout my life and home has been far away from my own mother, I have had several such women.  Joan, Evelyn, Viola, Jeanie, Pat, and Louise.  I’m so grateful for these Godly women, their prayers, and their love for me.

Kim, Ryan & I 1989

 A tiny girl named Kimberly and a little guy by the name of Ryan set my heart into a tailspin of love … and my perspective on life AND of this special holiday was changed forever.  Dimples and lace, baseball and volleyball, braces and glasses, love and more love … Years of Mother’s Day celebration took place and now they are both all grown up.  There is no greater honor or privilege than to continually stay on my knees in prayer, seeking God’s divine intervention and will for my children. 

I have no greater joy
than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
3 John 1:4

 

Ryan, Kim, Troy, Cole & Tadpole 2009

 

Grami’s love is the newest form of Mother’s Day celebration … Cole Michael.  Words are simply not enough. 

 There are various forms of love …
various forms of celebration …
various forms of honor taking place this weekend.  Please feel free to leave a comment or two regarding someone special that you wish to honor and celebrate this Mother’s Day. 

Until next time,
Debbie