The Mommy Bloggy

Reflections of a Mother's Heart

Keep Stacking Stones September 16, 2012

Filed under: Brad and Me Plus 3 — Michelle Ferguson @ 7:53 pm

A couple of weeks ago, we spent Labor Day weekend in the mountains.  Some friends blessed us tremendously with the use of their beautiful mountain cabin for four days!  I love getting away with my family!  What was extra-special was that we got to visit with Aunt Betty and Uncle Gene a couple of times while we were there!  We met them at our favorite pizza place in Waynesville and then spent a gorgeous evening watching the sunset over Lake Junaluska.  We met another time for a cook out on our screened-in porch, watching a thunder storm pass over the distant mountains.

Brad, the kids, and I spent time hiking to water falls, and even hiking a teeny tiny portion of the Appalachian Trail near the NOC in Nantahala Gorge.  We packed lots of picnics and ate wherever our day led us.  We spent one day exploring Gatlinburg, TN, where we played indoor miniature golf.  We also fell prey to the “fudge trap,” and bought over a pound of the butter and sugar concoction, including a slice of mint chocolate chip, caramel and sea salt, and chocolate raspberry!  On our way home from Gatlinburg, we pulled over to the side of the road to watch elk.  Then we explored the “Road to Nowhere,” which was really exciting. 

One morning, we set out to a waterfall to take the family Christmas picture.  You should just hear the groans and murmurs when I mention “it’s time to make the family Christmas photo!”  I hoped this year would be different!  When we arrived at the falls after a short hike, people were everywhere.  They just did not even consider that I wanted to take a family picture with no one else in it!  🙂  I decided we would wade into the river at the bottom of the falls and set up my tripod in the water to take our picture away from the people.  We did get our picture with no “extras” in the background, so you will see it in December, unless we happen to get another family photo this fall that we like better!  The picture in this post is not the Christmas photo!

As we were packing up to leave, the kids began playing in the water.  The boys tried to skip rocks across the water, and Logan stacked a small wall of stones underneath the surface of the clear water.  A few minutes later, Logan came to me upset saying, “Luke knocked over my stones!”  Seeing this as a good opportunity to preach a sermon, I mean, teach a lesson, I told Logan that his life will be filled with people who will “knock over his stones,” and what is important is how he responds to that.  As Christians, we cannot fight with hands or words to get vengeance or to try and right a wrong that’s been done to us.  We must pray, then allow the Lord to work on our behalf.  We are only responsible for what we say and do, not for the words and actions of others.  I explained that Logan must step up and be a man and handle life’s hardships with grace and forgiveness because that’s what Jesus would want.  I also encouraged him to keep stacking his stones.

I don’t know if he “got” all that, but hopefully it will be a lesson the Lord will bring back to his mind at another time in his life.  We all have had our stones knocked over at some time or another, but our Christian character is never more clear than how we respond in those times.

 

Fruity Breakfast July 24, 2012

Filed under: Recipes Worth Sharing — Michelle Ferguson @ 1:25 pm

Logan had an orthodontist appointment yesterday, and Luke and I sat in the waiting room while I read books and magazines he brought over to me.  In a Highlights magazine, we found a recipe for a healthy breakfast.  He wanted to try it this morning, so this is what we did (recipe tweaked a little):

I put cottage cheese on the bottom of a small glass dish, topped with peaches and bananas, and sprinkled the top with Pumpkin Flax Granola cereal.  Two out of my three kids ate it all.  Luke discovered he does not like cottage cheese.  Oh well, we’ll keep trying!

 

Logan’s Chocolate Berry Smoothie

Filed under: Recipes Worth Sharing — Michelle Ferguson @ 1:18 pm

Yesterday afternoon was so hot, so I told my boys that I would make them a smoothie.  Logan told me exactly what he wanted in his smoothie, and that’s how I made it.  It was so delicious, the boys finished every last drop (at least what didn’t end up on their faces!).  Here’s the recipe:

1/2 bag of frozen, mixed berries

yogurt (vanilla or fruity) and milk to consistency

mini chocolate chips

We blended the frozen fruit first, added the yogurt and milk to our preferred consistency.  The chocolate chips were added last.  Before I served to the boys, I poured some of the smoothie mixture into popsicle containers to freeze for a treat later.

 

 

P2P Getaway Weekend July 23, 2012

Filed under: Parenting with Purpose — Michelle Ferguson @ 5:39 pm

My twelve-year-old daughter, Lindsay, and I just went away on a Passport2Purity weekend the beginning of July.  Dennis and Barbara Rainey are the authors of this biblically-based program, and as the parents of six children themselves, they have experience!  Passport2Purity is a helpful tool used by moms and daughters or dads and sons to share some of life’s important issues that adolescents face, including the sex talk.  The overall emphasis is more on maintaining purity in every way, not just maintaining a virgin status.  The program is very well done, and I can’t recommend it highly enough!

You can use the program with multiple children and for boys and girls (you would just have to order another passport and child’s journal for an additional child).  They recommend planning a weekend like this for your child  between the ages 9 and 13, but highly recommend doing it before the teenage years.
P2P is a set of CD’s, parent book, passport (that you present to the child at the end), and a child’s journal.  There are a total of 5 sessions you will listen to on the CD’s.  The weekend schedule is laid out well, so you know what you are doing and when.  Basically, Friday night contains 2 sessions (first one begins in the car as you drive to your destination), and the child uses his or her journal to fill in the blanks.  Each session contains a special project which is fun, hands-on, and applies to the lesson.  (This does require prep work on your part, so I recommend you review the parent book a minimum of 2 weeks prior.  Also, both parents write a letter to the child and this requires prep work.)

On Saturday morning you will listen to Sessions 3 and 4, and session 3 contains the sex talk (I recommend you listen to Session 3 specifically before the weekend so you know what he’s going to say!).  Then Saturday afternoon, you plan a fun activity to do.  Lindsay and I had a pedicure and went shopping! Session 5 is done late Saturday afternoon and you present a gift you’ve bought (Bible, jewelry, etc.).  I presented Lindsay with a sterling silver purity ring from her daddy and me.  Afterwards, we went out to dinner to celebrate at a very nice restaurant (a restaurant without a play place!).
It was definitely a memorable weekend, and her tears near the end of the weekend showed me that this had made a profound impression upon her heart.  I loved that special time with her, and I think she will always remember it.  Pour lots of prayer into the weekend ahead of time that the Lord would prepare your heart  and your child’s.

 

Bingo at RMH July 5, 2012

Filed under: Parenting with Purpose — Michelle Ferguson @ 5:25 pm

My family volunteered Monday night to lead Bingo at the Ronald McDonald House in Charlotte.  We arrived a little early, so we were given a tour by another House volunteer.  This RMH has been open for only a year and is absolutely gorgeous, boasting 35,000 square feet of living space and 28 lovely rooms!  From the huge fish tank in the reception area, the cozy fireplace living room groupings with large flat screen tv’s, and the beautiful commercial-size kitchen to the play room for little ones, laundry room, and teen room complete with movies, computers, and games, this house has it all.  Brad commented, “This is the nicest place I hope I never have to stay.”

With different activities throughout the week for guests, Monday nights are Bingo nights.  We spread the prizes across a table and added some prizes of our own that we had brought (candy bars).  Seven guests played with us, each of our kids taking turns to spin the numbers and call them out.  The guests had a lot of fun, even getting a friendly competition going! 

Here is Luke calling out the numbers, confirming with Dad first, as he practices saying double digits!

I really enjoyed this opportunity because the Ferguson Five could participate together!  The RMH has lots of volunteer jobs, and we plan to go back as part of the Cookie Crew beginning in September.  The RMH has a cookie crew come in every day and make fresh baked cookies for their guests.  We will get to make and bake homemade chocolate chip cookies in their beautiful kitchen!  What  a blessing to make cookies and love on others!

I encourage you to volunteer with your children in your community.  There are lots of places to start:  soup kitchens, nursing homes, clothing closets, pregnancy centers, food pantries, or pet shelters.  It’s easy to send a check to your favorite charity or organization, but working side-by-side your children in an atmosphere of giving back is priceless!  They are learning life skills and learning that putting others first is very rewarding.  Here is a great article on volunteering with your children for further information and tips:  http://www.compassionatekids.com/volunteering.shtml

 

Answered Prayer May 25, 2012

Filed under: Devotions — Michelle Ferguson @ 1:40 pm

Three years ago, Logan’s dentist prompted me to make an appointment with an oral surgeon to evaluate a 5-year molar that had failed to erupt in Logan’s mouth.  I had not even been aware that this was an issue, but I guess that’s why we go to the dentist!

After our initial visit with the oral surgeon, he decided we could wait a year and re-evaluate this molar.  I scheduled the appointment for the following June.  In early June of 2010, while my family and I were vacationing in Kentucky, I received a phone message from the surgeon’s office asking me to reschedule Logan’s appointment because the doctor would be out of town.  Well, I never rescheduled that appointment.  Then, at Logan’s next dentist appointment, the dentist again encouraged me to pursue this molar issue with the surgeon.  So, I did make an appointment to follow-up in 2011, and at this visit, the surgeon gave us two options:  1)  He could try to “force” the tooth in by exposing the molar and attaching it to an anchoring device or 2)  He could surgically remove the molar.

My husband and I  honestly did not like either option.  When we could see a perfectly formed tooth under the gum line (however, totally covered by bone) on x-ray, it made me sad to think of having it removed.  God made that tooth for a purpose and I just wanted it to come in.  So we began to pray that God would bring this molar in on its own.  Logan joined us in praying, and he prayed so faithfully.

At Logan’s next dentist visit, the dentist encouraged me to meet with an orthodontist because now that Logan’s 5-year molar on the bottom had not come in, it was causing the molar above it which should normally rest on top of that molar, to come down out of the gum too far.  It’s called supra-eruption, too much tooth exposed.

So last summer, Brad and I met with the orthodontist for an evaluation.  He agreed to treat the supra-erupted molar and communicate with our oral surgeon on a strategy.  Several months went by and we never heard from either doctor, so at the next dentist appointment, the ball got rolling.  The orthodontist called and made a series of appointments with me for Logan to have the supra-erupted molar pulled back up into the gum line.  He was going to handle this supra-erupted molar and the surgeon would handle the “failed to erupt” molar.

By this time, the orthodontist and surgeon agreed that Logan’s molar should be surgically removed.  I felt a peace about pursuing the work to fix the supra-erupted molar, but I still felt no peace at all about removing the bottom molar.  So we took steps this spring to fix the upper molar.  After spacers, impressions, and a fitting, Logan has had the appliance, literally screwed, to the roof of his mouth with a band attached around that upper molar to force it back up into the gum line.

Last Saturday night, May 19, as we were putting Logan to bed, he said, “Mom, I feel something in my mouth I want you to check.”  Having no flashlight handy, I grabbed his small bedside lamp and shone it into his mouth.  I could not believe my eyes…Logan’s 5-year molar was beginning to break through the surface of the gum!  I about started crying!  I had been told by the surgeon, “If that tooth hasn’t come in by now, it never will.  It’s fused to his jawbone.”

We all rejoiced greatly!  After three years of praying, this molar was coming in!  I had really given up praying.  Logan’s molar was number one on my prayer list, but often it got skipped over.  I thought God was going to answer our prayer in another way, like removal.  However, Logan did not give up praying.  He prayed almost every single night for that tooth to come in.  God showed me through this Answered Prayer that I shouldn’t give up praying for something when I don’t see God working.  He is working.  He is waiting for the right time to reveal the “prize.”  I took great comfort and hope in this because God is at work.  He is faithful to answer the “small” things, as well as the “big” things.  He is so good!

Praise God we did not pursue surgery to remove that molar!  Praise God we waited for Him to reveal what He has been at work doing the whole time!  Praise God He is faithful and true!  Lindsay reminded me that “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much” (James 5:16).

I did take Logan to the orthodontist this week because at the same time I noticed his molar coming in, I noticed “sores” on the roof of his mouth and he complained that it felt like his gum was growing over the appliance.  At our “emergency” visit, the doctor explained that Logan’s tissue was reacting to the appliance and had inflamed around it.  He decided to remove the appliance to allow healing of the tissue to take place.  I pointed out that Logan’s molar was beginning to come in and he made a comment about not knowing why sometimes teeth do that.  I replied, “Well, Logan has been praying for three years for it to come in.”  The doctor responded, “I guess that’s your answer,” and I agreed.

 

 

Kale Chips May 24, 2012

Filed under: Recipes Worth Sharing — Michelle Ferguson @ 11:24 pm

A couple of weeks ago, I was flipping through the television channels and came across a Dr. Oz show.  Since Brad was not at home and I was interested in the topic of discussion,  I stayed to watch.  Dr. Oz, being known for his healthy eating and lifestyle, shared some ways to substitute unhealthy snacks for healthier ones.  One idea he shared was eating kale chips in place of fried potato chips.  Since my family and I enjoy cooked kale, my curiosity was piqued, and I tried the recipe out.

After washing and drying raw kale, place on baking sheet (I use stoneware), drizzle with oil (I use grape seed oil), and sea salt.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, watching that they don’t brown.  These kale chips are unbelievably crunchy and delicious, even kid-approved in our house.  We like them with a lot of salt!

I’m glad I ran across Dr. Oz’s show that Friday night!