Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Reading Old Things in a New Light

Through a recent blog find, I came across this blog post from Anna Sophia and Elizabeth Botkin at I've enjoyed reading their posts in this past year and am encouraged by their faithful example.
The post was entitiled: How to be a Better Daughter to Your Father and I must confess that when I first read it a year ago, I didn't really take much of it to heart. I thought it was geared more towards a different audience, one that didn't include me (I was very wrong).
I would encourage you to begin reading their blog if you haven't already, and if you are a young (or older) woman seeking to honor your Dad in each way that you can, I would highly encourage you to read that post.

Here are a few of the sections that I found to be the most helpful and challengeing (all emphasis mine):

"Your father isn’t the only one who’s not perfect… Let your father know that you desire his help and prayers for your character, and be humble enough to tell him what faults in particular you need help with. …and ask him what he thinks you need help with."
"Build the kind of relationship with your father that involves a lot of comfortable communication between the two of you.
Develop habits of talking together about everything.
So many problems daughters have with their fathers could have been solved by talking freely, deeply and frequently all along — by talking about issues before they become “issues.”
Go ahead and initiate the communication yourself. Our father says it is often difficult for men to know how to reach their daughters, and it’s helpful when their girls come to them with a seeking heart. As Deuteronomy 32:7 says, 'Ask thy father, and he will show thee.'

It’s a father’s duty to tell, but it’s our duty to ask."

"We should begin by wanting to really understand who our fathers are and why they do the things they do and think the things they think.
Develop an interest in the things that are important to them, and the battles they are fighting."

Consistently communicating with my Dad is something that I have been burdened with this past year, so it was so nice to be reminded of it again. I really appreciate the clear and straightforward way that the Botkins have in their writing and I found this article to be especially helpful.

This is such an important lesson, not only for now with my Dad but also someday with my husband. I am truly blessed to have the Dad that fears the Lord, who humbly studies the Word, and who takes his role as our father seriously. Also, we have a wonderful relationship, that is open and by God's grace is ever growing. I have much to be grateful for, I know of many girls who either don't have God-fearing Dads or they have a strained relationship.
So, even though I have things that I am working on (as does everyone), there is so much to be thankful for!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Happy Birthday Mica!

Happy, happy birthday, from all of us to you, we wish it was our birthday,
so we could party too!
Happy 17th birthday Mica!
We all are very thankful for you, and you are very special to us!!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Thoughts on Growing Older

I am usually a person that embraces change; I love going someplace new, meeting new people, without holding very much back :) I think this is mostly to do with my Dad; when choosing between something, most often times he will go with the one that he has never done, and he highly encourages us to do the same.
And most of the time we love it. just yesterday we were out shopping and had to choose between La Madeline, Chipotle, or a Mediterranean grill that we had never heard of before, and needless to say we went with the medi grill. Caro was not too happy about our choice, she is highly picky about what she chooses to put in her mouth; but there was yummy, warm pita bread involved so she consented.
And we loved it.
It wasn't like what we had eaten here in Houston before and everything tasted to authentic and delicious. Dad wasn't able to eat with us that time but we plan to take him there again in the near future.

Another time when I was seven or eight I still had training wheels on my bike. I knew how to ride without them; I had gone around on friends two-wheeled bikes perfectly fine.
Honestly, I liked my training wheels, not entirely for the security that they brought
but because I was convinced that I could go faster with them.
You see there was this "really big" hill in my neighborhood; Mica and I would spend entire afternoons going up and down, and up and down again, almost never coming in until it was dark. And it was my firm belief that I could never have as much fun on just two wheels. So I held on to training wheels as long as I could until my best friend took off hers; then something had to be done.
So came the day when I told my Dad to take off the beloved wheels, and Mica and I started up the "hill" together (Yes, we walked our bike up then rode down--it was a pretty big hill, especially when your seven).

I let Mica go down hill first, then I went down and found out

that I loved it--go figure.

I don't remember going any faster, but it certainly wasn't any slower than before; and I could take turns sharper and do all sorts of figure eights in the street (things you really couldn't do with training wheels).
The point was that I didn't want to go back to training wheels again; they were fun while they lasted but now I enjoyed riding without them.

I could go on about the countless times in which we did something different or changed something about our life. Moving to Germany and to California brought its own challenges and discoveries (Like always order your water "without gas" when you want tap water, mineral water tastes very different.) But in each place we have gone, whether a new beach, country by train, or even a new eatery, we have always tried our best to take in as much as we can while we are there.

Naturally, I've learned, that change comes with it's own difficulties and pains.
Moving to Germany was hard because we knew very little about the country previously, knew next to no German, and didn't have a car, phone, or much internet while we were there.

California presented many of the same challenges, but in a way that only Southern California can do.

And I don't know how many scrapes, scars, and bruises I got from taking my training wheels off.

I've been thinking about all of this lately because I see so many areas in my life that will soon bring change. And when I say "soon" I mean, "in the next five or ten years" soon.

For example, there is a sweet family that I enjoy babysitting for. And this past week they were considering asking me or Mica to stay the night and watch their children the next morning. Mom said, "Well, Elena can't because she has her nanny job in the morning, but Mica would love to go over..."
And that got me to thinking that, Lord willing, when I marry, how that will all change.
At first I felt so very sad.
That is one of the aspects that I love most about staying at home; I love being able to leave at a moments notice for whatever reason. There have been times where we had something else planned as a family, but an emergency with a friend arose and I was able to go and watch their children. And in those few moments, I thought about how all of that would change when I have a husband and a home. I brought these concerns to my parents when we were talking later that evening. That's when they brought it to my attention that yes things would change, but that doesn't mean certain things would just stop.
And that is the beauty of it.

Sure, I probably won't spend weekends at other peoples houses when the parents go out of town, people would bring their children to me if they want. And my Mom pointed out that these ladies would probably stop being her friends, but will probably become my own friends on a different level.

I love everything that I am doing now for my family and for different families that we know.
And yes, things would be different but thankfully, in this case, things wouldn't change.
I'll still have friends and family, only that I will have different desires and priorities.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, I am wonderfully accomplished on my bike and I enjoy many off road rides, especially different ones.

Picture Credit: "High Dive" by Norman Rockwell,

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Birthday

Dear readers,
Well, Mica is "sixteen, going on seventeen" and will be in six days (14, December),
unfortunately I will not be here on her actual birthday.
(Yes, she is a bit sore and I don't think she will ever let me forget it)
Seventeen is a nice number;
it has a great song that goes along with it, and I remember seventeen being a good year for me...that was before braces...
Anyway, please remember to comment and wish her well, tell her she is a jolly, good fellow, and give her some piece of wonderful wisdom that you have learned.
I know she will appreciate that.
Picture: Mica and Caro. Thanksgiving 2002


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Verse of the Week make-up

So, I haven't really kept up with the Verse of the Week lately. Things have been busy at the Marques home and I don't always have time to post a verse.
I've been reading through Isaiah these past couple of weeks and I thought I would share some of what I read this morning.

In that day the remnant of Israel and the survivors of the house of Jacob will no more lean on him who struck them, but will lean on the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God. For though your people Israel be as the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will return. Destruction is decreed, overflowing with righteousness. For the Lord GOD of hosts will make a full end, as decreed, in the midst of all the earth.
Therefore thus says the Lord GOD of hosts: "O my people, who dwell in Zion, be not afraid of the Assyrians when they strike with the rod and lift up their staff against you as the Egyptians did. For in a very little while my fury will come to an end, and my anger will be directed to their destruction. And the LORD of hosts will wield against them a whip, as when he struck Midian at the rock of Oreb. And his staff will be over the sea, and he will lift it as he did in Egypt.
~Isaiah 10:20-26


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