Friday, September 30, 2005

fresh flowers for September 30

Two Way Communication
©2005, lani wiens
a fresh flowers original

My sincere apologies for leaving you without flowers last week.

We were out at my husband’s family farm last week helping bring in the harvest. As part of their education the two oldest boys were out on the field with dad, grandpa and uncle. Their cousin was out there, too. At one point son #2 and cousin must have been in the grain truck while uncle was unloading. At any rate, we’re pretty sure they must have been on their own for a few minutes or the following event would most likely have been interrupted. I’m glad it wasn’t or I wouldn’t have had this flower to share with you!

Our boy, Chris wanted to talk to his dad who was out driving the combine somewhere. His cousin instructed him on the use of the FM radio that we use to communicate between vehicles and the farmhouse. This is what we heard.

“Dad?” – the unsure voice of ‘is this thing on?’
“Daddy?” – getting a little bolder now
“Daddy, I want to talk to you!” – accompanied by little boy snickers
There is a tiny blip in which Dad attempts to answer but the boys don’t give him a chance.
“Daaaaaaaad!” – accompanied by said cousin in the background encouraging him to try it again only louder!
“DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAD!” – with gales of laughter which finally prompt the boy to take his thumb off of the mike allowing his dad to answer.
Daddy finally has a chance to break in and explain that Christopher has to stop talking long enough to allow Daddy to answer.

Meanwhile, back at the farm, we women are having a little chuckle. A flower pops up as I realize that sometimes I am so busy trying to get God’s attention that I forget to be quiet and listen. I don’t realize that He has been trying to answer but I won’t get off the radio long enough to let Him break in.

A friend gave this to me once, a paraphrase of one line of a Psalm, let it sink in...

Be still and know that I am God
Be still and know that I am
Be still and know that I
Be still and know that
Be still and know
Be still and
Be still

Thursday, September 29, 2005


Don't be too shocked........I'm actually posting something. I'm shocked that I can so easily leave my blogosphere behind when the rest of life gets big. It has been such a big part of what I used to do each day. However, morning sicknes/afternoon fatigue/evening sickness, homeschooling and life in general have pushed this thing way down the priority list and that probably isn't gonna change a whole heap. sorry for all you fans out there who were just dying for any tidbit from me........oh.......there aren't any of those........oh well then , for those of you who drop in now and then;

I'm pregnant
we still haven't sold our house
therefore we still have not moved
I'm extremely annoyed with our dog at the moment
I really would like the baby to go back to sleep without me going up there and getting him another bottle but it probably isn't going to happen
we've been out at the farm helping with harvest
we're leading a bible study group and it looks like it should be a great group to work with
I'm pregnant

still pregnant (this seems to rule my days at the moment)
my eldest son put an extra hole in his chin yesterday trying to be helpful in a store, many stitches later and 4 hours at the hospital we finally got home
#3 son stuffed some kleenex up his nose several weeks ago and we had to go see a specialist to get it removed - very disgusting.
I'm pretty sick of doctors this week - the kids all had their annual physicals this week, too
Had to take girl to the chiropractor cause she fell off and swing and didn't bother to tell me about it until she was jumping on a trampoline and couldn't continue because her back hurt too much - it was waaaaaaaaaaaay out of place.

I'm tired and that babe isn't going back to sleep.

I'm pregnant.
Really enjoying pickles, olives and chocolate.........


Saturday, September 17, 2005

fresh flowers for September 17

Finding Joy in the Journey
©2005, Lani Wiens
a fresh flowers original

One of my biggest questions as we’ve explored the road of suffering this summer is this. Where is the joy? We are supposed to be counting it all joy when we encounter trials because it is producing His life in us. My friends, I haven’t always found suffering to be a joyful experience. However, this week God gave me a little glimpse of how it looks.

This pregnancy has had me nauseous from the very beginning. I am deeply grateful that I never actually throw up but nausea as your constant companion does not a happy mommy make. Then there is my amazing gag reflex to top it off, prompted by raw chicken, diaper pails and laundry. Believe I it or not, I am thrilled to death to be sick. I am not so sick as to be incapacitated but feel yucky most of the time. This has not been my experience to date in any of my pregnancies. I have been one of those people who just doesn’t get sick. Not this time.

As I was talking to another pregnant friend who can’t even stand to be in her house because she’s so sick she reminded me of something her mom had told her. That sickness is a great indicator that everything is okay on the inside. Your hormones and your body are doing what they’re supposed to do. So as I gag, I rejoice, this sickness is God’s way of letting me know that my baby is okay and my body is producing life. There is joy in the suffering.

I’m ecstatic that my pants are getting too tight. Any other time of my life I would not be happy about that, but now, my jeans have given way to sweatpants and soon to those lovely panel pants, I can hardly wait. None of these things happened when I was pregnant earlier this year. I was happy that I was 10 weeks pregnant and could fit all my pants, it should have been an alarm bell in my head that things weren’t right. I am an instant expansion model and am usually putting away my regular pants by 8 weeks. I’m there now and I’m packing them up with joy!

Another example of this joy was found in the aftermath of a jam session. This jam session had nothing to do with music and everything to do with strawberries and rhubarb. I made jam this week and it tastes wonderful. My kitchen, however, did not look wonderful after I was done. There was sticky red blobs all over the place, on the pots, spoons, counters, stove, jars and on sticky happy children. That huge mess was necessary to get to the final result. There was joy in the cleaning up because there was fruit as a result of all that mess. My kids’ hard work in the strawberry fields would not go to waste, the jam is on the shelf.

Because I know that there is fruit and life as a result of mess and suffering I can have joy in the midst of it. There IS joy in the journey. Yippee!

Monday, September 12, 2005


You've probably noticed that flowers aren't popping up quite so frequently anymore. Blogging has taken a much lower place on the priority list since homeschool has started in earnest. I thought I'd take a moment to write down some great things that God is doing...

I absolutely love home schooling and am not ashamed to admit it. All my life I wanted to be a teacher. I went to University and started my degree and realized I didn't agree at all with the philosophies behind the public education system and what I'd be forced to do as a teacher in that system. I quit.

We've entered into a lovely 'unforced rhythm of grace' in our approach to our school days and it's been going remarkably well. The boys have been mostly cooperative. I love watching their minds catch onto a concept. I love it when Christopher declares he doesn't need my help with the rest of the questions because he understands. I love it when he chants, "I did it in a zip!" and gets to put another sticker on his page. I love it that Sasha loves Thomas the Tank Engine and will watch it for awhile so I can do one on one time with the big guys.

On the house front - we are free of the shackles of real estate agent world once again. Hallelujah! We'll be putting the house back on in the next day or two - tell all your friends. I love hearing Sam pray for the buyer of our house, and for their dog, he is so full of faith.

Our financial mentor was over last night and continues to help us set up a financial framework that actually works for more than a week or two. Amazing and encouraging!

Our music business grew this year and we have more teaching hours than last year.

So far everything is going fine with the pregnancy. I love it when Abby prays and thanks God for our baby. The other day she asked God point blank to please not let this baby die like baby Channah did.

Our dear friend Joanne passed away last night. Home in glory after a long and difficult battle with cancer. she leaves behind a husband, three young children, many family and friends and a legacy of music.

We had a great weekend with our church family to kick off the start of the church calendar. What a lot of fun! Green Eggs and Ham rules - gotta be a box!!!

That's all for now....

Saturday, September 10, 2005

fresh flowers for September 10

Hidden Blessings
©2005, Lani Wiens
a fresh flowers original

I was talking with a friend yesterday about hidden blessings. If you’re like me you tend to focus on the not yet rather than on what is here and now. It’s somewhat depressing and should really be avoided. I chide my children on that point quite frequently, reminding them of what they have rather than what they don’t have. It would seem I need to preach that sermon to myself. So as my friend and I chatted about her own wilderness experience I encouraged her to embrace the possibilities, perhaps God had an unexpected blessing in store for her. After she left I sat down with myself to look back on our own journey to see where my hidden blessings were and are.

In the midst of the grief over the loss of our baby we found some blessings that were hidden and very unexpected. Every other year my husband’s family treks to Fairmont, BC for a holiday in November, this is the year for that trip. It is a wonderful time that the kids anticipate for months. My due date was in early December and with my medical maternity history going to Fairmont would have been very risky not to mention uncomfortable. The loss of the baby ensured my participation in that holiday, a bittersweet blessing but a blessing nonetheless. Another blessings was that as we dealt with our own grief through having a memorial service other lives were touched and healed in a way we could not have anticipated, the loss of our baby has given us a new avenue of empathy and ministry.

The moving experience is still locked on pause. We had anticipated a quick sale of our home. Obviously that hasn’t happened as we still sit here waiting. However, in the time of the waiting we’ve had time to make some improvements to our home. Our friends have had time to come back and do some work on their house that needed to be done that we were anticipating having to do ourselves, blessings for both of us on that front. As well, the price has come down which makes the move even more desirable for us. We’ve also learned many valuable lessons and found some treasured prayer partners as we’ve walked this path.

Every journey’s end really only means the beginning of another, different journey. Here are a few examples of friends and family who have completed one journey only to begin another. They are experiencing the blessings from the trip and now are going to learn even more lessons and experience new blessings.

My sister just finished the journey of pregnancy in her forties. She experienced many unexpected twists and turns on that road, most of them unpleasant. Now she holds her healthy, precious daughter in her arms and starts down the road of training, nurturing, post-partum adjustment and learning the wonder of this new life.

My friend just came through several years of single motherhood and being a widow. Now she starts the journey of married life again, but to someone completely different, adjustments in parenting and living space and the wonder of this new relationship.

My blogging friend has just taken a turn on her journey of a dream to create a country space for her family. The house is sold but where to go is a question. Now they will experience the thrill of tracking down the perfect property and changing it into the image of their dreams while experiencing the questions of how and where.

I have to remind myself daily to look for the good things, the wondrous things, the beautiful things that God puts in my path. Sometimes I miss them because I am too busy blubbering in my soup. God reminded me recently that most of my angst is tied up in my own attitude toward the situation. If I keep my eyes up, to the mountains, where my help comes from, I will see the blessings that God is leaving on my path like so many hidden treasures. Today I encourage you to go on a treasure hunt for hidden blessings. Something or someone is waiting to bless you today.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

are you getting shinier?

This week has had so many ups and downs. My own personal emotional roller coaster could certainly win prizes at any fair ground. The only thing that is keeping me sane is the word of God and frequent naps.

From Psalm 34

I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. (fears about houses, babies, children, schooling and finances are included in the word all). Those who look to him are radian; thier faces are never covered with shame. This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them.

A righteous man may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all.

Did you catch that, the righteous man may have MANY troubles. I have not yet found a place in scripture that says we Christians get to have a rosy life without any trials in it. However, I find that God promises himself, his Holy Spirit and angels to walk with us through each and every difficulty. So what kind of gospel are we preaching? Do we tell people that their life will be fine once they have Jesus? The Bible doesn't say that. I think we expect that - Jesus, the magic wand waves his hand over our life and everything will go exactly the way WE want it too. Ooops, think there might be a problem there.

II Corinthians 4

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.

The purpose behind all of this is glory that outshines the trouble. I'm thinking I may be getting shined up!

Friday, September 02, 2005

fresh flowers for September 2

Psalm 33
A psalm of David
Inspired by the Almighty
NOT a fresh flowers original

Sing joyfully to the Lord, you righteous;

It is fitting for the upright to praise him.

Praise the Lord with the harp;

Make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre.

Sing to him a new song;

Play skilfully, and shout for joy.

For the word of the Lord is right and true;

He is faithful in all he does.

The Lord loves righteousness and justice;

The earth is full of his unfailing love.

By the word of the Lord were the heavens made,

Their starry host by the breath of his mouth.

He gathers the waters of the sea into jars;

He puts the deep into storehouses.

Let all the earth fear the Lord;

Let all the people of the world revere him.

For he spoke, and it came to be;

He commanded, and it stood firm.

The Lord foils the plans of the nations;

He thwarts the purposes of the peoples.

But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever,

The purposes of his heart through all generations.

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,

The people he chose for his inheritance.

From heaven the Lord looks down and sees all mankind;

From his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth –

He who forms the hearts of all,

Who considers everything they do.

No king is saved by the size of his army;

No warrior escapes by his great strength.

A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;

Despite all its great strength it cannot save.

But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,

On those whose hope is in his unfailing love,

To deliver them from death

And keep them alive in famine.

We wait in hope for the Lord;

He is our help and our shield.

In him our hearts rejoice,

For we trust in his holy name.

May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord,

Even as we put our hope in you.

I don’t have anything more to add. The word of the Lord stands firm.

Thursday, September 01, 2005


I have been remiss in announcing the arrival of my new niece:

Teresa Crystal
9 lbs 11 oz
born on August 30, 2005
sister to: Tami Lynn, Tonja, Terrell, and Tobia

Proud Mommy and Daddy are Herb and Donna (my sister)

She's so precious, we've all enjoyed holding her already and basking in her newness.

Shhhhh, I need to tell a little secret on my macho nine year old boy.

He didn't want to give her up to anyone else, he just wanted to sit and hold her. When we were leaving he asked if we could come back soon just so he could hold her some more. My heart swells with tears. He's such an awesome big brother. Man I love that boy. No question how helpful he'll be when #6 shows up. I love the wonder in his eyes.