Restless Soul

There’s a restlessness in me tod


I’m not sure where it’s coming from.

Perhaps from waiting impatiently for something that, at this very moment, seems like it will never happen.

Or an inability to sit still after a few weeks of go-go-going.

I liked that.

Sitting still? Not so much.

It could be that the transition to one nap for my sweet girl is making

my days longer, forcing me to be more creative in how we spend our time together.

There’s a bit of me that’s questioning myself, too…who is the real Mel and where does she fit? I kind of still feel like I’m looking for that place, wherever it might be.

Yet in the middle of the restlessness, I am thankful that…

Nothing is impossible with my God.

And that it is ok…more than ok…to be still and know that He is God. Also? That He gives the strength, patience, and joy needed for each day…and that He gave me my sweet daughter. I love her so much. And that He loves me with an everlasting love, just as I am,Β on days when I feel that no one else does, especially me.

That’ s all for tonight.


Daddy, Mommy, and Maelie

I’ve been wanting to do this for awhile.

When I see Mae right next to her daddy, I always think she looks like

him. Everyone else seems to think the same thing, too.

I didn’t have photos for both of us that were at exactly one year, but these are close enough.

When I look at both of our baby pictures, maybe there is a little hope that there’s some of her mommy in there


Enjoy. :)

First up? The real star of the show…not the greatest shot of her, but it works. Who do you think she looks like


Ok, now me…I think this pic is close to 1 1/2 years old. And, yeah, I had a ton of hair.

And the hubby…by the way, Happy Father’s Day, honey!

πŸ˜€ My guess is that this one is about the same time frame for Tob…but we weren’t really sure.


Teman Bertemu Lagi

David Tif Mel Tobin

Friends meet again.

Good day.


Five Minute Friday: Home

Today I’m linking up with the Gypsy Mama for

Five Minute Friday. Join me!

And for more great Five Minute Friday stories, click here!

Oh, and the guidelines: Write for five minutes. No editing, revising, or worrying. Just write. There is no right or wrong.

Today’s Topic: Home

To be h ones

t, I wasn’t planning on writing Five Minute Friday today. And then I saw the topic.

Well, God, You know what You’re doing far more than I do.

Home is a word that brings pain right now.

Growing up in instability created a longing for it.

Being married and living in transition for years gave me an even deeper desire to be there.

We have really tried to make home wherever we are…because it’s true that this world is NOT my home. But sometimes it’s just nice to be settled, ya know

? To hang those pictures up and paint the walls and fence in the yard and put in that pool…the one I’ve been begging for.

:) (But only a little…haha!)

And last July God gave us a gift that seemed too good to be true. A house we love in a neighborhood we love even more.

We are surrounded by people who love us…and we love them, too!

We desire more than (almost) anything to stay and raise our family here, close to friends who have become family.

The one hang-up

? We’re renting this place and the attempt to purchase it has sent us through the wringer more times than we can count.

Things are still sitting at the bank…and we are (still) waiting.

Waiting…for what, we’re not sure. For the bank to say, Yeah, we’ll accept your offer! That’s best case scenario.

Worst case? Get out. In six weeks. I don’t think about that one.

And there are a million other scenarios possible, ones that I try to not dwell on.

Home is a painful word when you’re waiting for one.

So if you read this, will you pray?

Pray that this will be it…that God will give us home.

Thanks. :)


Thursday Diet Cherry Pepsi…and a Chat, Too

Yeah, that’s the new beverage of choice. It’s good! Although I did have one LARGE coffee this morning, so had our conversation taken place then, it would have been a regular old coffee date. :)

It’s been a busy, good week.

It’s VBS week, which I think I’ve mentioned once or twice. πŸ˜‰ I’ve gotten to spend my mornings leading games for 2nd-4th graders, which is pretty fun most of the time.

(Today there were some listening issues, so it’s not fair for me to share my opinion based JUST on today.) Overall, the kids are really good kids, and I love the fact that they are willing to participate in just about anything and have a good time. And in the past, I’ve never loved the VBS songs, but the ones from this program are good. (And stuck in my head…so praise God they’re good songs!) Maelie has spent her mornings in the nursery with some of her friends, and I love that she already has some buddies and also that she has some pretty awesome people taking care of her. It’s been such a good week, and a tiny part of me is sad that it’s over tomorrow.

In addition to Maelie having happy VBS mornings, she’s just had a happy week. We’ve had some fun walks and lots of play time in her new sandbox (without the sand right now :)) She’s been breaking in some of her new toys, which she got at her birthday party Sunday night.

We had lots of friends and neighbors over and just had the best time.

What a blessing they all are to us!

And this chat would not be complete without me sharing the holy fit that Maelie threw today outside…because I wouldn’t let her eat rocks. Really, child, do I starve you THAT much?! She was so loud that I took her inside…but after that, she got over it. (And found some new blocks to chew on instead.) So, really, it was all good.

Yesterday I did something I hadn’ t done since I go

t back

to the States.

I went into a gas station to get a fountain drink…and about went into culture shock mode all over again.

Dude…I’ve never seen so many drink choices at my disposal. And 44 oz. for $.89?! I sorta went crazy and added a couple random flavors to my Diet Pepsi. It was a little strong, but thankfully it still tasted good. It would have been sad if I’d wrecked that drink, my first gas station fountain drink since returning to America.

Thornton’s, I shall be visiting you much more often! Thank you for your existence.

Speaking of things I haven’t done for awhile…playing volleyball?! Yeah, that’s one of them. Tomorrow night/Saturday morning, Tobin and I are playing in a volleyball tournament with some friends. I really, really hope I don’ t comple

tely embarrass myself. (Or hurt myself, which, really, is far more likely.) Joel & Sarah, Jonny & Kris, Tobin…I’m apologizing in advance. Just sayin’.

Tonight I took a shower, and the hot water was being stupid. (That’s been goin’ on a few weeks here now.) Well, I got impatient and decided to just take my shower cold.

Um….BRRRRRR? I had flashbacks to cold mornings in Indonesia when we couldn’t get the hot water heater to light and were forced to take cold showers.

I need to continually remind myself to be thankful for the little things…like hot water.

My big brother turned 40 today!

4-0. Crazy. (By the way, that does not make me old; it means there’s a big age gap.)

And…deep breath. I think that’s all. I’m sorta ready to get a good night’s sleep. One more day of VBS…followed by some weekend craziness.

I love my life.

And I love you all.

Thanks for reading. :)


5 Minute Challenge

This is the perfect night for a five minute challenge since I have exactly that before midnight. πŸ˜‰

It h as been

a good week so far.

It’s Vacation Bible School week, and I’ve had the fun job of leading games for the 2nd-4th graders. I say that with zero sarcasm…I really am enjoying it.

It gives me a little taste of the teacher life I’ve been missing for a couple of years, and I get to hang out with some pretty cool kids.

Maelie has had a fun week, too, spending her mornings in the nursery at church with some new friends.

Then she and I get to spend a little time together before she goes down for her (long) afternoon nap. A change in schedule is def

initely wearing her out.

But she’s finally getting into a big-girl-one-nap routine, and it’s working. Love my girl.

Tonight Tobin and a friend headed to the Cubs/Brewers games and were treated to a rain delay…the game started 1 1/2 hours late. Yeah, he’ll be home sometime “in the morning”. I’m glad he could go, though.


And Maelie and I got to hang out with our sweet friend

tonight, first at her house, and then she came over to watch Confessions of a Shopaholic after Mae went to bed.

We had a great time.

And what a great movie…I seriously laughed out loud through most of it even though I’ve seen it over a dozen times. Watch it if you haven’t seen it.

Fun times…now to publish this thing before it’s “tomorrow”.



Dear Daughter,

14 June 2011

My sweet Maelie,

Today you turned one year old.

It was a day full of laughter and love and memories.

As any special day goes, it seemed too short, and now I sit here on the couch as you sleep peacefully upstairs, wondering where the days have gone.

How can you be one already


The day you were born was the best day of my life.

They brought you over to me, and…you were everything I’d ever dreamed of and so much more. I remember how tiny and perfect you felt in my arms and how you snuggled up to me immediately.

I fell overwhelmingly and completely in love.

And somehow that day, exactly one year ago, feels like it was just minutes ago. Time has truly flown.

In between then and now there

were milestones, memories, pictures…all things that will remind us of the days that have passed.

But I have to admit to you that it’s bittersweet to realize that you are no longer a baby but a little girl.

And though I miss those cuddles and close moments, I absolutely adore the little girl you are becoming.

You amaze me each day when you discover something new, laugh at something (or nothing!), give love to those around you, and light up the room simply be being there.

You are truly special, a cherished gift from God.

There are so many things that your daddy and I dream for you, but we know that in the end, your dreams belong to you. The one thing we desire more than anything, though, is that you grow up to love God and serve Him with your life, however and wherever that may be. We pray every day that you will do just that.

And we will continue to pray that every day of your life.

In another short year, I’ll be writing you again, amazed by the fact that yet another year has flown by. I know that there will be more milestones and memories, but at this moment I want to savor here and now.

My sweet girl, you have added so much joy to our lives, and we are so very thankful for you.

Happy 1st Birthday!

I’ll love you forever!


Not Knowing

I let myself stress out over something over the weekend.

This week is VBS at Immanuel, and I volunteered to do games

for the 2nd-4th graders.

I know some of you are groaning right now, thinking, that sounds like about the most UNfun thing ever.

But you need to understand that I truly do enjoy things like that…and especially that age of kids.

They just crack me up…they live and act with complete abandon, not caring who might be watching. (5th grade? That’ s another

story. :))

And so I was really looking forward to the chance to hang out with kids that age again and be a “teacher” again.

But the one thing stressing me out was that I didn’t have a clue what was going on.

Part of that came from the few Type A tendencies that I have and part because I’m still kinda new and figuring things out…and it’s been over a decade since I’ve helped with VBS, too.

While I love to be spontaneous, I cannot be put into a situation where I have responsibility and not have the details planned.

But because of the circumstances, I literally had to go into things this morning semi-blind.

I guess we call it trusti

ng, huh


I woke up a little earlier than usual, spent some time reading my Bible on the porch, and felt A LOT better.

And then I had that moment…duh, Mel. Did you pray about it?

Not enough.

Those few moments spent with my Father

? Were worth so much more than the days I spent worrying about something that, in the end, was no big deal.

I showed up, hung out with some cool kids, played some games.

And I decided today that sometimes it’s ok to not know… but simply to trust.

And? I get to go back tomorrow.



Crazy and THE CAKE

Crazy day. A good one, one that I’ll write much more about over the week.

We celebrated our girl tonight.

(Her birthday is actually Tuesday, but weekend parties are just better for everyone.)

And what a fun night it was!

We got the most perfect weather…low 70’s and sunny, lots of friends and fun and ( too

much) food.

I love memories, and THE CAKE is definitely one

I will always remember.

My dear friend, Kris, spent over two hours helping me put it together, and we were pretty proud of how it turned out.

I think Maelie liked it, too. :)

The Cake
The Cake
Maelie eating cake


91 Cupcakes

I seriously almost forgot to blog tonight.

First time that’s happened so far.


This late-night, almost-forgotten post comes to you from a girl with frosting in her hair and powdered sugar all over her shirt.

I baked A LOT of cupcakes today.

And made five batches of frosting.

And tomorrow begins the great birthday cake assembling.

Hopefully it works ’cause I have no clue what I’m doing!

A few lessons learned today from baking.

#1: Just because the box says a mix will make 24 cupcakes, that is not necessarily accurate.

#2: If a cert

ain girl makes too much buttercream frosting, she will never, ever want to eat it again.

#3: Wilton’s icing dye stains fingernails. Just sayin’. (And the blue turned out the coolest of the four colors I made.)

#4: Chocolate cupcakes smell better while they’ re baking than vanilla ones do.

Just sayin’ again. πŸ˜‰

#5: Three hours straight spent in a kitchen can cause a person to go crazy.

So…91 cupcakes later, I am putting my feet up, letting my head hit the pillow, and calling it a night. Big day tomorrow!