Fire Engine Red

Over the last holiday when hardware stores were running their big paint sales, we stocked up.

Since we just bought a house for the very first time and since it was a foreclosure and since it consisted of nearly every shade of brown, we were excited to make some cosmetic changes. 

I’ve painted walls and ceilings and dabbled in art work for years, and I still don’t understand the wonder and uniqueness of color and how mixing red and blue makes purple. ( I’m not going to even google that to see I’m right :) 

Parts of the house needed painting to pass inspection. Parts of it needed painting because it was so drab and awful it put me in a bad mood. I still have no idea how color can have that effect on me. But it does.

Just  like this floor for instance.

 This is my laundry room and even I, who loves to do laundry didn’t think it was very much fun . We  painted the floor with porch floor paint, thanks to my cousins suggestion. And the brown wall and trim tuned white. 

How about these bricks.

Fake bricks or rocks I should say. I’m still not sure what they are. But now they are a lovely creamy color all over and so much more restful to my eyes. The blue and rose and brown and grey made me nauseous and nervous and restless. Maybe I’m weird like that. But color seriously can wreak havoc with me. At least when it’s in my house. Or my wardrobe :) no worries….I don’t mind what other people choose for their colors so much….it’s just me that’s picky about my stuff :) so if you happen to love multicolored brick, by all means, enjoy it to the fullest!

When I went to paint our house, I was my own worse critic. The living room looked blue instead of grey. The green in the kitchen that was suppose to compliment the super boring oak cabinets looked incomplete. The yellow in the family room was a dream but the purple wall in our room looked  like a fluorescent candy shop. 

Then the red. Oh the red. I wanted a red and gold room for our guests with lovely white trim and ceiling. Well, my gorgeous red turned out to look like a shiny squeaky clean fire engine. And let’s not talk about the gold. How do you make gold paint except for metallic  spray paint? 

Kobe’s room got a bunch of that and it actually looks really nice and fun and playful. Great 4 yr old colors.  Just not guest room colors. 

So what to do? We had bought this paint. And it drove us crazy. Maybe this is where samples of actual paint would have been a good idea :)

So I stirred and stirred. White with the purple to tone it down. It’s still a rather fluorescent shade of lavender. But at least theres not a candy shop in our bedroom. 

We mixed super dark grey , from I don’t know where , with our too blue grey and I’m still convincing myself it’s grey. 

I mixed an espresso brown sample can I had gotten with the fire engine red. The espresso was for the trim around the brick. It looked awful. But I think God knew why He had me get such a dark color . It turned my red into a deeper shade of earth red and actually looked sleepable. 

In some ways my house is nothing like I envisioned. In other ways it’s better because color has a mind of it’s own. 

And I thought of life. And how I plan and hope and dream, and things don’t turn out the way I hoped. It’s frustrating and I start to panic and try to take control and change things. Until finally, nothing looks good or right any more and I wonder what went wrong. 

So while my house may not look like I envisioned it….neither does life. Very few of us (if any) are actually living our childhood dreams of endless summer and rainbows and sunshine. But we can still have beautiful lives. Beautiful hearts turned to God, washed fresh , (like a fresh coat of paint ) by His blood and grace. 

All that happens to us in life is for His glory. He gives us breathe. He planned us before we were anything. He permits us to live on this earth and bring glory to His name that is so high and vast and wide beyond anything we can imagine.

Life may hurt. Suck the breathe out of us. Make us want to fight and say “NO way!!” But there’s a little secret to the pain….

“When he sees all the anguish of his soul, he shall be satisfied.”

Because though the anguish Of Jesus, God brought LIFE and LIFE and MORE LIFE! Through the parts of life that don’t go as we planned and it feels like we’ve made a total mess of everything and death stares us in the face…..

God turns it into beauty and life giving fountains pour into our life from the Giver of Life! It’s all about His glory and pouring His goodness out to others! They need to know about that LIFE too! 

I love my house. I love that the colors aren’t perfect and that I made a few smudges. It reminds me that LIFE is beautiful! Even if it’s not the shade you were expecting. 


He Finds Me

I came to a realization .

A slow dawning that is has been a long time in the rising. 

I always thought that WE search and seek for God. That we give our selves to Jesus and ‘find peace’. 

Now I know, there is submission ,etc. but without getting technical with any terms ….

I want to shout it from the bottom of my heart….

JESUS found ME!

Just as The sheperd found the lost lamb. Just as the Woman swept her floor until she  found  coin. Just as the Light streamed down on Saul and found  his darkest needs…..

So I came to realize that JESUS finding me was a totally different situation then ME finding Him.

Because when I am finding Him I am still DOING and SAVING and trying to BE. I am reaching and struggling and finding satisfaction in ME. ( one of my weakness is always trying to be better and never achieving what I feel is enough) (my striving aalways only lasts for a bit until I think I need to do more or start all over again)

But when I realize my need and my brokenness. That He already has been In the depths of my addiction of striving. That He knows the magnitude of my fears. That the only way to true freedom is to stop the struggle and beg HIM to find me. When I choose that, I am giving up and giving Him control and giving Him every atom of glory and power .
And again, I realize that I am broken and incompetent and incomplete, and only by HIM can I be found. 

Only through Him I am worthy to be His daughter.

And even that is a mystery.

This changes my life. It changes my thinking. It changes my future and covers my past. 

This thing of HIM saying I am FOUND!

And when I get overwhelmed and don’t know what to do, then I still my heart and whisper, 

“find me, Jesus!”

And He does. 


When Hope Slips

              “I don’t know how to do this.”

It’s that gripping knowledge that I am not up to the challenge. I’ve come head to head with it a few times in life. It’s scary beyond words. One of the most vulnerable helpless feelings a human can have.

When our little girl was born and was so beautiful she could have been a china doll. 

When she wouldn’t suck and started to lose weight .

When she was diagnose with  NCS, a rare genetic disorder with no cure available.

When I found out I was having another baby that would be 15 months younger then my little girl.

When I didn’t know how to stop her cries.

When I felt like a failure as a wife and Mommy and I was too tired. 

It hit me the hardest when my little girl died. I knew how to love and be a Mommy and be her advocate and voice. I had learned what her cries meant and how she liked to be held and her favorite music. 

But I didn’t know how to live without her. And it was terrifying. I didn’t know how to be the grieving Mommy or how to wade through the emotions and still be a wife. I didn’t know what I needed or what my little boy needed or what my husband needed. I didn’t know how to have a funeral or what to do with all the Kierra Things that filled our house. 

It’s been almost 22 months since that specific breathtaking grip of fear and total helplessness washed over me. I still don’t know how to do life. I’ve come to understand the verse in the Bible a bit more clearly though…His strength is made perfect in my weakness. 

Because when I can’t .

He can. 

When I’m too weak. 

He is never too tired. 

I didn’t need to be a certain way in life. Be the perfect Mommy. Totally understand my emotions. Cry at the right times or say the right grieving words. I just needed to hold His hand. My Father who held Hope.

Life brings heartbreak, unexpected changes, overwhelming circumstances. And paths you never dreamed you’d travel. 

No matter what you are facing right now….

A terminal diagnose. 

A loved one dies.

You are abandoned.

You lose your possessions.

Your heart gets broken.

Everything familiar is shaken.

Know this without a doubt….

You will get through this! 

If you are holding onto the God of Hope, you have nothing to fear.

You will learn a new rhythm in life. You will learn to see through different eyes. You will find familiar once again. 

You will never be the same.

But you will smile again. You’ve got this. 

Because God’s got you. 

And He never changes. He’s the ONE constant that knows EXACTLY how to do it. He will show you. With all His gentleness and love and grace that He pours into life. 

He never gives up on you. You ALWAYS have HOPE! 

Because hope isn’t always feelings. 

It’s a gift that God gives us that we can hang onto with both hands and anchors our soul to the ROCK!




Gifted with life.
Gifted with a heartbeat.
Gifted with grace to embrace life.


We attended a banquet recently that was a fundraiser for Echoz, our local pregnancy center. They are a Christian center that offers free ultrasounds and help women work through pregnancies…..especially ones that come at a difficult time in life.  The message of the night was “Be still and know that I am God.”

The nursing staff and patient advocates offer support , encouragement, and ultimately Gods love to hundreds of women a year. They also realize no matter  how much they long to guide people in pro life choices, it is ultimately not in their power to force anyone into a discussion.

That’s part of being still. Part of letting God work. Part of being there for every individual to meet them where they are and offer support after what  choice they eventually decide to make.

A sweet vibrant lady from Texas spoke from her heart about the abortion she had. Her journey through helping to run an abortion clinic and eventually the freedom and forgiveness she found in Christ. It took her 15 years before she could even begin grieving her Heidi that she had lost. I don’t know much of her life story but if there were Christian’s praying specifically for her through those difficult years, I’m sure they felt like their ‘being still’ wasn’t really working all that well.

The ‘Knowing that God is God’ may have dulled around the edges. Became a sceptical mass of impatience.

But God.
He has done an amazing work through this same lady that chose abortions, and 1,000s of babies have been saved. 1,000s of mother’s spared that inexpressible grief. 1,000s of father’s turned toward a different path then so many grieving,self destructing  daddies find themselves in.

When God calls you to pray and be still when He asks you to simply KNOW that He is God. When we want to do and do and do. When we think we are useless unless we are DOING. When there is no stillness left.

And all we can hear is our own striving and trying and analizing and reasoning.
Then God is still there…still asking us to
Be Still and KNOW.
Trust His timing. The One who created each individual, whether they draw a breath or not, knows them so much better then they know themselves.

And although action is so dynamic….

Being STILL is just as strong!



Of Little Belts and Life

We had a wonderful day of adventure in the Little Belt mountains this summer with these wonderful friends. Four wheelers and dirt bikes made it even more fun :) the kids all did wonderful and I’m hoping we can go again next year ;) 

The view was breathtaking and we followed such gorgeous mountain trails. Sun scented pines. Fields of Wildflowers (although they were past their prime). Narrow ledges along steep mountain faces. And Rocky terrain that was barren and wind whipped and wild. 

(Yep, we went all the way to the top. Talk about a rough ride….but so worth it!) 

 Our scenery changed so drastically it reminded me of the drastic opposites in personalities. Now please understand these pictures have no reflection on the people in them. In other words….we don’t have drastic personality clashes with them. (Lol.) The colorful personalities brought out parts of this blog post so I just had to share them. 
Did you know that with an app on your phone you can translate your spoken words into Chinease, Spanish, Latin, or Russian? And that’s just the beginning. 
Guess what the most common phrases are that are translated  every day?

“How are you?”

“Thank you!”

And my favorite….”I love you. ” 

((This little guy concked out on the bumpiest part of the trail on the way down the mountain. Now I know he can truly sleep anywhere :))

I saw a commercial for this google app recently that grabbed my attention….it started with languages being interpreted. People smiling. New friends being made. And it ended with these words….
Be together. Not the same.


It struck me solid. 

Life is full of this. I don’t know of any single other person that is exactly the same as any other single person. 

Yet, we all have the same basic needs of survival in life. We all bleed red. We all breathe oxygen. We are all on Earth together. 

We are all created by the same God. 

We have all sinned. We are all broken. 

We are all offered free salvation through Jesus’ death. 

As SAME as we are in so many basic fundamental aspects of life, we somehow seem to forget our origin. We all started little. Helpless. We all grow into big people of those tiny origins.

Somewhere along the way in life the glamour and simplicity seems to fade and we forget that simple childish view of life. We don’t understand each other. We jump to conclusions. We speak different dialects. We prioritize in different ways. We have different tastes and preferences. We have different opinions and fight different battles and wear different scars. 

And somehow, the different is all we can see. 


I am understanding more and more how OK it is to be different from those I love. That’s agreeing to disagree on some things in life is healthy. That my own desire to desperately control makes me want other people to think like me. I am slowly learning to accept and embrace the differences and understand the dialects. 

When we don’t understand the language, then we need to bring it to the Interpreter of heart and mind and ask Him for understanding and translation. 

So often I am too busy to stop and bring my thoughts to God. I wonder how many heart aches and misunderstandings and fears would be relieved if I would simply utilize this wonderful tool of prayer that is free for all of us.

 This praying thing that can be as natural as breathing. Available any time. In any place. For anyone.

We are beautiful together. Not the same. But beautiful. We can lift our faces to the Son. Bask in His peace. Worship our Creator. And pass the Interpretor love on to those we meet every day. Let Him teach us genuine love that makes others feel value, accepted, and LOVED. 

Just like the gorgeous Wildflowers that blend into the loveliest bouquet.

  They remind me again….of our Wildflower Girl…

   And how different is truly SO BEAUTIFUL!


Our Ninth House

Seven years ago when we got married I would never have dreamed that we would be moving for the ninth time but what an adventurous time we’ve had! . Most of our moves were totally unplanned but totally necessary. Moving is never easy and packing your life into boxes is always eye opening. 
Just when I think I have purged and downsized….we move again and I still think there’s too much :) I suppose hauling heavy boxes does that to you.

This time we are actually buying our very own very first house!!! Its one of those milestones we have dreamed about and planned for and saved money toward. I can still scarcely believe this is happening and until we feel the metal of keys in our hands I am holding my breath :)

And even then I will have to pinch myself to believe we are in this stage of life…
What will we do without that renters groove of desperately scrubbing carpet stains and stressing out over holes in the walls and turning down pets and staring at plain boring paint colors….or hideous ones :)

We are planning to have closing on Monday so I’m hoping I’m not jumping the gun here. The bungalow is a nice size family home that was foreclosed on. It has some nice original hard wood floors and a newly remodeled kitchen with an open dining and family room and also a large living room, two bathrooms, and three small bedrooms. There’s a lot of cosmetic work that we’d like to do but ugly is liveable for now:)


We did a bit of work on it already as you can see:) eventually i will post before and afters. It took me most of a day to scrape off the old wall paper on this wall. And we have more to do;)

Steve tackled a water damaged ceiling

We put in super long hours and were totally shot by Friday so after attending a friends wedding in Gold Creek we headed for some rest and relaxation. Virginia City is an old mining town that has been wonderfully preserved. Its a great family friendly place with a fun short train ride through dredges and country to nearby Nevada City.






We drove up to Boot Hill where a crucial part of Virginia City history went down….four highway men were hanged for robbing and killing miners. They had no mercy and would kill anyone in their way…even women and children. After their deaths, the miners were much more safe and likely to actually be able to keep their hard earned gold.


They were buried with un marked graves but in later years the gravestones were added to preserve history. I wondered who their mother’s were. I wonder if they wept. Or if they even knew.
We got back to our campsight to having our tent literally blowing away. The 40 mph wind would have sent it tumbling if some kind souls hadn’t tied it down. The inside was a disaster. There was a nasty storm blowing in so we loaded up and headed for a motel for the night. We didn’t want to be tossed across the open fields like tumbleweed At midnight.


The next morning broke refreshing and rain whispered. Kobe and I did some fun water color painting at the open window before we headed for home and a new week of work.

Side note…
We bought our house! This post is a week old;) but I’m kinda behind in so many things I thought I’d post it anyway and eventually I will catch up with my own tail i hope;)
Blessings to your day!


12 Midnight

The moon is shining tonight. 
In a clear sky.
With not even a whiff of wildfire smoke in the air.
For days, stench and smog hung over Montana as wildfires raged out of control. I went to bed last evening with the strong wind blowing rancid smoke in the cracks round the windows. 
I woke this morning to blue sky. Clear air. Rain drenched grass. Overturned lawn furniture. And Singing birds.
And I thank God. 
And I think of the firefighters who lost their lives this week. I hope they were prepared to meet their Maker. I hope they died painlessly. I hope they just sort of drifted off those wild mountains and into glorious Heaven. 
I think of their families. And how it is probably always midnight in their hearts right now and they will never forget the wildfires of 2015. 
I think of others who have faced the 12 o’clock midnight of their lives recently. And how every day for the next 100 or 100,000,000 may consist of the minutes that creep toward dawn. 
How sometimes it feels like you will grope forever in this smog of life. That just when you catch a glimpse of dawn in the horizon, the rains come again. And you bow your heart and weep. 
How you get tired of the life you are living. How you wish you could change it all and it would be high noon and you would know what carefree feels like again. And you could laugh from your depths again. 
I have found a truth. It never ever changes. It is there through smoke screens and bright sunshine. Through silence and tears. It is the strength that weaves itself into the very fibers of life. I painted it in childish script to remember. it’s simple and genuine.

And because of that love….I PROMISE. No matter what midnight you are facing right now. No matter of you see the clock striking midnight in your very near future…if it I’d half past 12 . Or somewhere between darkest and dawn….

The DAWN will come! 
Keep hanging on. The LIGHT will become brighter and brighter and the day spring will dawn in your heart. And you will open your eyes in the most glorious new born sunshine you have ever awaken to.
His relentless love will always always pursue and lead you!
He will create beauty in you!