Sunday, March 29, 2009

The office that was.....

This weekend was a bit of a suprise for my father-in-law. My mother-in-law, sister-in-law and myself conspired to do an extreme makeover on his office. To say it was messy and disorganized was an understatment, but we were determined to help him get organized and give him a great new workspace. I started this process last weekend, so for the last seven days I have had little sleep, and dragged poor Andrew all over the South Metro during his spring break in preparation for the actual "makevoer day". The poor kid was a trooper. One morning we hit 2 Goodwills, Menards, Joann Fabrics, Walmart & IKEA.

So we loaded up the van - with ALL seats removed and the entire bed/cab of my dad's truck and headed on down to Cannon Falls on Friday. Freshly painted file cabinets, newly uppolstered chairs, fun new photography projects, and 4 cans of paint were all part of the "new" look to be created. took about 24 hours....and a little bit of coaxing for poor Bryan to buckle down with the piles of paper - but now we are finished. And here are the results..... My favorite addition was this art. I had this shadow box I purchased at IKEA, but I didn't like the photos in it so I grabbed Eric's tackle box and set out to take some new photos. I came up with some that I loved and switched um out....awwww such sweet victory when I get something to look the way I want it to.

We actually had a fabulous time enjoying one another company and working together to accomplish such a big project. Thank you Bryan for being such a good sport - and I hope that you are able to adapt quickly to the "new" way of doing things :) We love you.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

A note from Eric.

Andrew wanted a donut this morning and I said no. So he said "I'm calling the police." and grabbed the phone on the table. He then pretended to dial and said "Hi police, this is Andrew Skillestad. My dad won't give me a donut so you need to take him to jail. OK thanks."

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Hawaii Part II

So the second reason I went to Hawaii was to work.....I know fun. But actually I very much enjoyed myself. Between meetings and playing "trading spaces" with the condo I kept very busy. Here's some pics of the finished rooms. The teal one already had everything in it except for paint and curtains and art. The blue room was all from scratch and it sure was fun furniture shopping with dad....he....he. (are you sure you want that night's $50 more than that one) All of the art I made myself - bought super cheap frames, put stuff on it, and even took the pictures. Guess if you need great photos - Hawaii is the place to take them :)

Friday, March 13, 2009

Mandisa - You Wouldn't Cry

Sometimes I just need a vivid picture of heaven. Though the song is titled "You Wouldn't Cry" it made me cry. I love when my spirit is sensative to my true home.

Blue has never been bluer.
True has never been truer.
Honey never tasted so sweet
There's a song in the breeze
A million voices of praise
A rose has never smelled redder
The sun has never been brighter
If I could find the right words to say
If you could look at my face
If you could just see this place
You wouldn't cry for me today.

Listen and be moved: Song 11

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

More Courtney Mutterings....

Courtney "Mom when can we buy an X-ray?"
Me "What?"
Courtney yells "Mom when can we buy an X-ray?"
Me "You don't have to yell it, I'm sitting right here. Why do you want an X-ray?"
Courtney "Because I need to know whats in my body. My stomach hurts and I need to figure out what's in there."
Me "Sorry sweety, but X-ray's only belong at the Dr's office."
Courtney "I know, I just wanted to know whats in there."

Sunday, March 8, 2009


My heart has been heavy again since our encounter with the old Andrew the last three months of 2008. I noticed my life seemed to look thru the autism goggles. Nothing I saw or did was untouched by it, I knew that I wasn't seeing my world thru God's eyes anymore, but thru the eyes of our situation again.

It was four years ago that I came to Hawaii with Dad and where God mercifully gave me freedom from the "autism goggles" I had then. Those goggles were tinted a little different - anger - bitterness - pain - fear. When Dad asked me a few months ago if I would come with him to Hawaii again, I jumped at the chance. I knew if there was one place that I could get these goggles off it would be here.

On Wednesday, we were scheduled to fly to Honolulu for a night because Dad had several meetings for us to attend. But on Wednesday morning we were invited to a time of prayer with the University of Nations advirsory board. There were several couples from Washington that were there to pray specifically for this group of people and Dad and I had an hour to spend with one of them ourselves. This week we officially had shut the doors of Progress Land so they spent about 45 minutes praying with Dad regarding his future, he stopped them then and asked them to pray for me as well.

The wife of the couple said she saw me walking into somewhere new with two suitcases in my hands. I had a sense of awe and excitment on my face and I was there to pursue a new passion. The two suitcases when opened contained all the things that had prepared me for this new passion. I've been asking God for a few months to ignite in me a passion - passion for himself, passion for my husband and children, and a passion for something with spiritual significance. Then she said she saw a string of cans like they put behind cars after weddings, and one string was attached to each of my ankles. Our time of prayer showed one ankle of cans to be my feelings of failure as a parent. I have long struggled with feelings of inadequacy regarding my mothering skills - I asked for forgivness for believing the lies and let go of my inadequacies. The second group of cans represented my guilt over wishing things were different - wishing my life was different and that Andrew was normal. I guess I never really thought I had guilt about it, never thought those kind of thoughts would impact my spirit in such a way. Again I asked God to forgive me for the guilt, to acknowledge that I was truly feeling this way and recognizing those feelings were real but that I don't need to have them anymore, because God doesn't make mistakes.

Ahhhh....the sweet place of freedom and joy. Again, this place has led to my "autism goggles" being removed so that I can see my world thru the eyes God intended for me to have. This has also taught me to take captive every thought - I never imagined that my thinking "Why does Andrew have to be autistic?" would have put me in such a place as it did. I am so grateful to be here, and for the people who are on this campus that are such a great example of faith.

I am excited to head home and to make some changes!