Monday, February 28, 2011

no better

"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves." -Good ol Philippians 2:3-

Just trying to remind myself of that verse as often as possible. Humility; Im really no better than any one else in this world.

sex slavery

"Against their will, they are sold and forced to sleep with several men a day. If they do not they are beaten, tied up, stuck with hot irons, etc. For some of the new women who give up a fight, they are bound and gangraped until they are numb to what is happening. The younger women are usually locked in cages until they are sold to the highest bidder. Typically a wealthy business man who believes that sleeping with a virgin will cleanse him of sins, curses, and diseases will be the buyer. If a woman has children in the brothel, they are given drugs and shoved under the bed while their mothers work.

These women cannot escape, and if they try they are beaten or killed. They can try to pay their way to freedom, but this means they have to pay back whatever the brothel owner paid to buy them plus their living expenses at the brothel and an additional 30% on top of that. They are truly trapped." -snippet from my friend, Hollis', blog. For the full blog just go to this link.

I don't know how after reading this we can just go about living our lives, pretending this type of stuff isn't  happening. Surely life is not about doing what is best for me, but what is best for others.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


I never understood how eating all the food on my plate was suppose to help the starving children in China.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

It Is Good!

Ever since we have moved there seems to be so much falling into place. A lot of exciting things are happening right now and so many doors are closing so that it is very obvious what ones are opening. And I am very excited for Michael. I will eventually be writing about it all. It is so good.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

baby shower

So on Saturday I had my baby shower. It was soooo wonderful. My sisters, moms, and friends put a ton of work into it. I could tell they tried to make it so unique and something that I would like. One of my favorite things they did was asking everyone to bring a childrens book instead of a card. We have so many cute books now.  Everyone made me feel so special and loved. I even had two friends drive 3 1/2 hrs to come to it. I am so thankful for the people in my life. And oh, did we get some really cute baby things. =) =)


So I worked at a hospital for five years and I do pretty well around blood and sick people. But for some reason when my husband goes through pain, I do not do well at all. I remember one time he was in the hospital for five days and when they were poking him for his I.V. I got so sick to my stomach. Yesterday he woke up with an awful migrane, his first one ever. He had really bad back pain on top of that. He slept most of the entire day with sunglasses on because the light was bothering him. At one point he said he was feeling nauseated and had a really sharp pain behind his eye. I then, started to get sick to my stomach and felt lightheaded. I really think I will be one of those moms that has to work up my emotinal tolerance to my kids getting sick. I just don't do well with that. I am so happy that he is doing bettter today, because yesterday was a very long day.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Good Times With Patient Registration

So I am filling out my registration form for my new midwife. One of the questions asked me how many times I have moved in the past year. HA. I have no idea how to answer that question with the way our life has been.

It makes me think of when I first came home from the race and had to go to the doctors cause I was sick. I went the 3rd day I came home and it was hilarious. My sister took me in and this is what it looked like.

Registration Lady: What is your name?
Me: Well, I think at this office I'm registered under last name Bickel, but it is Murphy now.
Registration Lady: Ok. Is your phone number still (old phone number)?
Me: No
Registration Lady: What is your new phone number?
Me: I dont have a phone number
Registration Lady: What is your husbands phone number?
Me: He doesn't have a phone number either. Let me give you my sisters.
Registration lady: What is your address?
Me: Ooooo. We don't have one. We use my husbands parents address, but I don't know it off the top of my head and I don't have a number to call him to ask him. (My sister gave me her address to use)
Registration Lady: Insurance information?
Me: Don't have insurance. My international insurance just ended.
Registration Lady: You and your husbands occupation.
Me: hmmmm? (lots of laughter)
Registration Lady: Laughing. Oh hun. You gotta get yourself together.
Me and my sister: (laughing sooo hard) Yeah. Probably!

Good times. Life is stressful sometimes. But life is hilarious.


There are a lot of people out there that defend woman and our rights. I am one of them. I think woman can be treated awful and looked at in the wrong ways, and it makes me sick. My friend wrote in her blog a statistic that women in Swaziland are more likely to be raped than to learn how to read. I hate hearing those things....but....
I have realized that I am a huge advocate for men. When I look at the way men are talked about I hear some really negative things. So many facebook statuses by girls put down guys. We call them jerks and put flat out there that there are no good ones out there. But Ive come to realize that often we become what we are told we are, and men are told some pretty awful things about themselves.

Michael and I were talking about sitcoms the other day and how we hate the way men are portrayed. The husbands are always the stupid, lazy beer drinkers that can't do anything right and only care about football and woman. I think this actually puts a poor identity to men and they actually start to believe that is the way they are wired and that is how it is supposed to be. So many times I hear wives put down their husbands and talk so poorly of them, and I just can't stand it.

Another thing that my husband really learned to break through from being on the world race was being able to be vulnerable and have some emotion, say what is hurting inside and deal with it. Here is a great quote from a speaker I heard the other day. "The messages and expectations that fuel shame are gender related. There is one expectation on men, at which I would argue is suffocating men. And that is, "do not be seen as weak." Men have to be emotionally stoic. We set men up in the worst way possible." When my husband finally felt comfortable enough to be allowed to open up and maybe shed some tears, he was able to deal with some deep hurts he didn't know he had. I saw the men around me on the world race allow themselves to go through the same thing, and it was amazing the men they became once they felt comfortable with each other to get vulnerable and allow to show that they hurt inside. I am telling you, THAT is manly.  Very manly. Once the men around us realized they were allowed to break down when they needed to, they became more confident in themselves on the inside, not just on the outside like most men pretend to be.

The speaker I was listening to said that a man once told her, "my wife and kids would rather me die on a white horse then have me fall off of it." That is so sad to me. Men should be allowed to not always be the strong ones and make mistakes. Men should be allowed to deal with their deep hurts and not get crap about it.

So women, we need to affirm our men. Tell them they are great and maybe they can believe it and that they are made for more than what the media is telling them. They are made for more than the couch and a beer. Every man wants to believe that, but they are just not told that.

Men, you are amazing. Even the strongest of woman who aren't willing to say it, deep down know that we need you. We need you as fathers, friends, husbands, and brothers. Ones that love us deeply. Men, allow yourselves to open up. I think it is often other men that put it on men to be "strong", at least on the outside. But it is way more manly to be real. You are living in a lie if you are holding it all in. We don't want fake, we want real men, who can be vulnerable even when it may seem like you are being weak. But being vulnerable and honest about what really is going on inside, is actually probably the most strong, courageous, and manly thing you can do. So be real, because you are GREAT men, some of you are just are locked up on the inside.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Brilliant Parenting Advice

"So many of us have spent so much time and energy numbing discomfort because we can't sit in it.....I can tell you as a college professor, we are raising kids who have no tolerance  for discomfort and disappointment."

 "We perfect...We perfect, most dangerously, our children. When we hold those perfect little babies in our hands, our job is not to say, "look at him, look at her, shes perfect. My job is just to keep her perfect. Make sure she makes the tennis team by 5th grade, and Yale by 7th grade". That's not our job. Our job is to look at them and say, "you know what? you are imperfect, and are wired for struggle, but you are worthy for love and belonging." Show me a generation of kids raised like that and I think we will end some of the problems we see today."
-Brene Brown

50 Amazing Things About My Dad
#42: Piano Performance- At church or pastor talked a little bit about performance parents. Parents that show how proud they are toward us only when we "succeed". When we graduate, play a good game, get a good job, get the best grades, etc. This made me really thankful for my dad and made me think of a very significant memory in my life. When I was in high school I played in a piano recital that I completely screwed up on. I froze almost every 30 seconds and could not even make it through the piano piece. I remember not wanting to confront anyone and was just so embarrassed. I remember I left to walk outside instead of going to the after dinner. My dad followed me and just hugged me while I sobbed my little eyes out. He told me he was so proud of me and it didn't matter to him if I played all the notes just right or not. He told me it sounded beautiful. He also told me that he struggles with wanting people to think he is perfect too and that he didn't want the two of us to have to struggle with that anymore, that it is OK to not be perfect and to fail sometimes. My dad was so vulnerable and made me feel so loved. We went for a walk until I was done crying and then went back in to eat some good food. And honestly, since then, I have never been fearful of failing in front of my dad or to feel like I have to be something "great" to make him happy and proud of me. I love my dad.


My husband wants my bellybutton to pop out so bad. I don't understand why this is so important to him. But everyday he thinks it's gonna happen as my stomach gets bigger. He only has 6 weeks left, and I don't think it's going to happen, but he is convinced.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Audrey Hepburn Always Was Wonderful!

People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone.
-Audrey Hepburn

snow fire

tonight my parents built a fire outside in the snow and roasted hot dogs for everyone for dinner. A fire looks really beautiful surrounded by snow.

Winter Weather Surprise

Saturday was crazy. The snow just came out of nowhere. It turned out to be a pretty good day. Michael was working and my parents and I needed some fresh air so we went down by the river where there are some awesome trails we used to go running on. We got our boots on and went on a little hike instead. It was a great workout and we had so much fun. It was soooo beautiful out.

 That would be my dad. And I found a winter coat that would zip over my belly
 My parents are so cute and in love!
And they both ended up in the snow. I am pregnant so I did not.

Along with winter surprises my friend Stefanie was on her way to Cleveland and ended up getting stuck in Toledo. Her car wouldn't make it to Cleveland, so my dad took a trip to pick her up. She ended up at my house overnight till she could find a way to get home. Stefanie and I made more memories together. We made chili, played banana grams, and ended up snuggling on the couch like we always do together. Some good music, good conversation, and some reading. I think she fell asleep reading "Harry Potter" and I fell asleep reading "PollyAnna". Wow we are nerds. (By the way, I think I'm only reading Pollyanna because the book smells like an old attic, and the pages break if you don't turn them careful enough.)

On the couch. 
I love Detroit so much, but I'm pretty sure Stefanie loves Detroit more than I do. Every time I see Stefanie she has her awesome Detroit t-shirt she wears at one point. She is part of changing that city.

Superbowl Commercials

I was so not impressed overall with the superbowl commercials. I did like four of them though, that I thought were not completely ridiculous. (the kitchen remodel- funny, but not over the top) ( little darth vader- cute, funny, and realistic) (the old people misunderstanding the car commercial. Any commercial with cute old people in it does it for me) (DETROIT. Seriously, this commercial made me emotional. I love detroit so much and this was a great commercial. I was so proud of myself that I could tell it was detroit before they let you know what city it was. Anyone who is from Detroit and loves it, would understand. It is a city that has been to hell and back. Or at least trying to get back. =) )

Oh, and I'm happy the Packers won!!!!!!


So Ive really been thinking about parenting since Im having a baby in like 6 weeks. Ive just decided that Im not one to have my style of parenting planned out and organized before he even gets here. I want to take one step at a time with each individual child cause they will all be different. But there are a few things I'm sure I won't budge on.

* I want to nurse my children.

* I don't want to buy my kids a ton of toys. I'd rather have mud and critters in the house than a million toys taking over. I risk sounding completely awful, but I would rather have my child break a bone from trying to jump out of a tree than to try and pry him out from the front of the television. I'd rather spend money to bring my children to different places and experiences then the next high tech gaming system. Growing up my cousins and I LOVED all meeting up at my grandparents. I have absolutely no memories of watching a movie or playing video games. We went fishing in the summer, and played ice hockey in the winter. We went on the paddle boat, played street hockey, basketball, and hockey in the basement. We played softball in the front yard, and flew kites, and ran through my uncles cow field, and made up trampoline games. We played so many card games and basically I could go on and on with the games we invented ourselves. I felt like I had a childhood of imagination and creativity, and I want my children to as well.

* I want to figure out my childs love language and never discipline them by going against that love language.

* If possible, I will have my husband deal with all of the childrens ear problems and ear doctor appointments. I will probably cry the whole time If I have to do it. Well, OK. I'm sure I will have to do it at some point.

* I want to find the balance between structure and flexibility.

I know I have a few more but that is all I can think of right now! I think parenting is going to be one hard and amazing adventure.

50 Amazing Things About My Dad

#46 - Mrs. Robinson: So growing up we used to have bunnies. We had so many of them throughout the years. One bunny I remember was named Mrs. Robinson. I don't really remember why we named her that. Well, we loved her, and when she died it was so hard for us girls. So that night, my dad took us to this amazing playground and I remember when it got dark we all just laid there and watched the stars for a while. Then he brought us home, put on his Simon and Garfunkel record and played us their Mrs Robinson song. So hilarious. It is a great memory.

#45 - Yahtzee: So since I have been living with my parents we play lots of games. My dad and I play yahtzee all the time, and every time that we do we have to play all six games. It's always a good time. =)

#44 - Sledding: When we lived in NY we used to have this awesome hill in our back yard. My dad would come out and go sledding on it with us and make us awesome snow jumps that made us go flying. Good times!

# 43- Miss. America: When we were younger we used to love watching Miss. America. One year we were watching it and my dad walked by the T.V. and said, " Your mother is way more beautiful than all those girls". My sister remembers another time that my dad told her, " Your mother is prettier than Cinderella." AWWW!

Friday, February 4, 2011


I miss Asia today like a bunches. It is hard to explain why unless you have been to Asia and love it there. But I sure miss it a whole lot.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Grace and Glory

Life isn't always easy. And today when I have been struggling with some stuff, I find this verse my friend sent me the other day.

"For the Lord God is our shield. He gives us Grace and Glory. The Lord will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right. O Lord of Heaven's Armies, what joy for those who trust in you."
Psalm 87: 11-12

Basically, I cannot give up on trusting in God even when the way seems impossible.

The plus side, my parents are so amazing! They are working so hard to get everything ready for us to live comfortably downstairs. I am so thankful for them.