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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Pizza Bowl and Some Local Flavor

It has been a while since I have had a chance to post, but we’ve been having some serious fun around here!

We just got back from a trip to Alabama where we saw N.C. State play in the Papa John’s Bowl. (no, we didn’t win, but it’s ok… we had fun anyway!) A few things made it really fun:

1) We went by ourselves! WOO HOO! It had been a while since my hubby and I had done something like this all by ourselves so we really enjoyed talking… or not!  Reading in the car, listening to music or just riding was really nice.  

2) We got to stay with family while we were there! Here we are at Steve’s aunt’s house getting ready for the game. She would not let us leave without fixing us a bacon and egg breakfast! She is so sweet and really made us feel at home.

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3) We got to go to some of the local hot spots! YUMMM!  We went to a place called Dreamland BBQ and just look at those ribs and that SWEET tea!

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Here’s my sweet hubby trying to text on his new phone, but check out the “wall paper” behind him… license plates were EVERYWHERE! The food was really good and there was a lot of excitement in the air with the game just hours away. We had this waitress that called everyone “honey” or “sweetie”. She made us a little nervous with all of those men in there!

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4) We had pretty good seats… right behind the BAND! This is a picture from my seat. The tuba players were RIGHT there… like I could have thrown something and hit them with it… and it was SO loud! But, it made it fun… so fun that my husband doesn’t have much of a voice from yelling so much! 

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Because we were near the band one of the mascots hung out near the stands there.. Here’s Ms. Wolf… 007

5)After the game we got to see more family! Check out these cuties! That’s Miah, McKenzie, and Ryan pretending to like each other for a second! They are siblings and the children of my husband’s cousin. Miah (who is 3) said that she likes school and she’s “learning paint.” Oh, she was a hoot! 010

6) On our way home we got to go to the Varsity in Atlanta! Would you look at this parking lot?? The line is actually blocking people who are trying to pull out from that shelter on the left. It was so busy we could hardly walk! But that chili/slaw dog and frosted orange were worth the wait!!  Delish!

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We had a great time together and a super time seeing family!

I can’t wait to catch up on everyone’s blog and see how all of you spent Christmas! Happy New Year!! 2009 is on the way!!

Oh, sorry about my font there… it went from bold to NOT bold somehow…

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

“… and she wrapped Him in swaddling cloths…”

I have been so busy this Christmas that I feel like I have hardly stopped to enjoy what it’s really about. I would not say that I have been caught up in the material part of it, but rather the events of it all. My mother-in-law’s surgery, a wedding, a Christmas program at church,my husband’s work party,  my daughter’s school, working a lot more hours than usual, a Special Needs class party, our Sunday school Christmas party and several birthdays all thrown in to make an exceptionally busy time. 

Most Christmas’ aren’t like this for me. I actually try really hard to slow down and appreciate the people I am with and the holiday as a whole. But this year… I have just felt like I have moved from one fire to another and, honestly, it has been overwhelming.

This morning it got to me. I sat down to have my time with the Lord and I just broke down crying. “LORD! This isn’t how you intended it to be!”

I opened His Word and read in John 13:1-6. This is what verses 2-5 say:

“The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God; so He got up from the meal, took off His outer clothing and wrapped a towel around His waist. After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash His disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him.”

I don’t know why, but seeing Him wrap that outer garment around Himself and begin to serve His disciples by washing their feet reminded me of His mother, Mary, wrapping Him in swaddling cloths and laying Him in the manger… where He began to serve this world with His life. He had a job to do and a purpose behind it. He always kept the main thing the main thing.

In the midst of the devil trying to get Him off track and Judas betraying Him… Jesus continued to serve, care and press on toward His ultimate goal of being the sacrifice for our sins.

Somehow I have gotten off track this holiday season. I don’t know if you are like me and have felt overwhelmed, but just know that our Lord is still here with us keeping the main thing the main thing. We have to be willing to sit before Him and hear what He has as the priority and allow Him to help us refocus. Sometimes it takes me getting to the point of being overwhelmed before I realize exactly what has happened, and then I need a little discipline from my Daddy!

Oh Lord, forgive me for being so caught up in the busy time of Christmas that I have forgotten to worship you daily. Yes, church has been amazing and I have loved that time, but I have not taken it into my everyday. I have lost my joy on several occasions simply because I “have to get it DONE!” Help me to refocus on You, why You came and those that I love so dearly. Thank you for loving me… in spite of myself!!

Happy Birthday Jesus!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Cards and Pictures too!

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My friend Faith is doing a Christmas card exchange and I REALLY want to participate! Thing is… I did my card in Shutterfly and it’s not letting me “share”!! Hello! It’s Christmas! We are suppose to share!! If anyone can tutor me on getting my card on here I will gladly share!

 EDITED TO SAY: Yay for Faith! She scanned it for me! SOOO here we are!! LOVE HER! Thanks girl! :)g-christmas card

SOOO I guess I will share our most recent photos that we had done this past weekend! I LOVE them! Faith, and other friends, had their photos done by Heather and so we decided that it looked like fun and we wanted to give her a try! Man, are we glad we did??!! 

 

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I love the ones with the initials! It’s like we have our monogram on the pics! WHO doesn’t love a monogram??

I am looking forward to sharing more with you soon. We need to make a decision about which ones we want to order and I love so many of them! We had such a great time that I really didn’t want it to end. The best pictures came at the end of our time together when Caroline was not trying to put on a show for her. Once we got comfortable it was time to leave!! I am still excited about how they turned out, and we had a great time just being together as a family.

What do you think??

Friday, December 12, 2008

Deck the Halls!

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Merry Christmas!!

I hope everyone is just as crazy as I am, but enjoying it all the same! We have Bible verses about Christmas to learn, gifts to wrap (notice the large empty area under that tree? Well, there are gifts bought to go there, but are they wrapped? Uh. no.) and more gifts to buy. We have a Christmas program to be a part of at church and a Christmas party for our Sunday school class to attend. IT IS NUTSO!! But it’s Christmas and it’s still fun!

Speaking of those Bible verses, tonight while Caroline was in the tub she said: (in a VERY loud voice!)

“And there were in the same country shepherds keeping watch over their fwocks by night. And lo! The angel of the Lord said unto them Fear not! for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For God so loved the world that He gave his only forgotten Son that whoever beweve in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16” 015

I am sure the Bible says SOMETHING like that… in several places.

Anyway, we had my husband’s work party at my mother-in-law’s house and it went very well. She is doing GREAT and just amazes us everyday, BUT there were 25 people in her house 2 weeks after fairly major surgery!! The party was scheduled before the surgery and it was being catered so she thought we could swing it. It was a lot of work, but I think everyone enjoyed themselves… as much as engineers enjoy themselves when they are together that is! Hee hee.

This time of year can be very overwhelming, and yet the reason that we do so many of the things that we do is because we love our family and friends, we enjoy celebrating our Savior’s birth and we enjoy the traditions that we share with mankind. It makes us a part of something bigger than ourselves. It makes us want to give and brings us closer to those that we love. And every year I learn something new. I learn more about why we celebrate and it makes this time of year so special!

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas! Our Savior, family and friends are worth every effort that we put into this season. There may be fifty-leven things to do, but it’s ok! They will get done. Just remember…People are more important that things, and Jesus is most important! Celebrate Him and the ones you love!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Happy Anniversary!!

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Today our sweet friends Chad and Faith are celebrating their 8th wedding anniversary! I remember just joining our young couple’s Sunday school class and we did no know a soul!  Everyone kept asking if we were going to this wedding, but we had no idea who was getting married! Later we learned that Chad and Faith were the sweet couple that tied the knot and that the December wedding was just gorgeous!!

We did not know Chad and Faith then, but as time progressed we got to know them, became good friends with them and eventually joined up with them to teach that same class! Many couples have come and gone but over the past several years it has been so much fun to serve along side them. Our friendship has grown and we are so blessed to have them in our lives.

We have been on beach trips, mountain trips, local missions trips and just out for countless after church lunches! We have celebrated 4th of July, birthdays and Christmas’ together. They have kept Caroline for us and loved her like she is their own. Friends like that don’t come along every day we we know a blessing when we see it!

Chad and Faith, we love you guys so much! CONGRATULATIONS! We are thankful for you and for your testimony of faithfulness through good, and some trying, times! Your love for Jesus shines through. We are praying for you as you long to grow your family and we can not wait to see what God has in store as He answers our prayers! Thanks for loving us and our Caroline. You are very special to us and we thank the Lord for you! We wish you many more years of celebrations!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

First Time Flower Girl

It has been a while since I have had time to get my thoughts together well enough to write a post! We have been super busy with my mother-in-law’s hospital stay on top of the Christmas rush! On top of all of it my friend Amy got married, and our Caroline was in the wedding!!

She had a sweet dress for the rehearsal. 018 013

I thought she looked very sweet with her little brown dress and beige/gold sweater. She had never been in a wedding so this was all exciting and new. She asked TONS of questions all the way there (it was about 45 minutes from our house so we had plenty of talking time!) but she was ready to go!

On the way home from the rehearsal her daddy started explaining that he had not felt well the entire night and he was afraid he was getting sick! Sure enough, during the night he woke up with a fever. Needless to say, he didn’t get to experience her first big day as a flower girl.

So the next day  off we went, leaving daddy at home in bed, with curls in our hair and a pretty dress to wear.

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And here’s her pretty dress… she felt like a real princess!

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With the bride before the wedding… they had the same color dresses and the same slippers.

Amy has always been very special to Caroline! She is the Children’s Minister at our church and has always taken such good care of our girl! She was actually babysitting Caroline on her first date with her new husband, Joel. They decided to meet at the mall and Amy had taken Caroline there to Build-A-Bear that same day. My husband was on his way to get her when Joel arrived so she was one of the first kids from Amy’s ministry that Joel met.

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A practice run…006

And then lining up for the big “show”! Everyone wore black but the bride and Caroline.  She was so sweet at the end of that line of ladies… waiting her turn to walk down the aisle.

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And here she is! Taking it all in as Miss Amy became Mrs. Amy Alley!

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At the end of the ceremony, after the kiss, Caroline said, “Miss Amy! Did you kiss?” REALLY loud. I wanted to crawl under the pew!! Lots of people laughed and later told me that it just made it sweeter so I guess I will take their word for it!

I was very proud of our girl that day, and I am so happy for Amy and Joel! We wish them all the best and are praying the Lord’s richest blessings on them as they begin their life together!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Saying Thanks

I got an e-mail from a friend today with a neat concept from Xerox. You can click on this link and you pick a card, choose a message or write one of your own, and then Xerox will print it and send it to soldiers serving overseas! HOW COOL IS THAT? I think that while we are here enjoying our freedoms we can most certainly say thanks to the ones that are defending us! There's a widget at the bottom of my blog but the picture is HUGE and I don't know how to edit it. Anyway, just click the website. You will see what I mean! It only takes a second!

I am also saying thanks that my mother-in-law is going home tomorrow from the hospital! She is doing so well, but the doctors have kept her for precautions and I am glad. She HAS to take it slow and not put pressure on her legs so they are keeping a good eye on her. She looks great though and she is OVER the hospital food! It's time to go home!

I am just really thankful for my church, family and friends. They have been such great support through this time with my MIL and each one of them have just prayed and loved us so much. It's amazing at the blessings that those relationships bring, and I am so grateful!

We are pretty tired, but at peace because the Lord has just been amazing too. Above all He has given us each of these blessings! Our freedom, good health, a church, family and friends, doctors and medicines that heal... all of it is straight from Him! Praise the Lord!

I would do a little dance.. oh, creative movement in the Baptist circles... but I'm too tired. :)
Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Prayer Works, Ya'll!

Thank you so much for all of your prayers and support that so many of you have offered during this time for my Mother-in-law! Many people have told me that though they don't leave comments (and shame on you by the way!) you have been keeping up with what's going on through this blawg! AND you have been praying! THANK YOU! We definitely feel the prayers and we can tell you that it works!

The surgery went very well. We are so thrilled that they found no more cancer and they were able to get all that they did see. Therefore, she will not need chemo or radiation!! She will have a long recovery and it will be pretty painful for a while, but she is lovin' her some morphine today so we will just celebrate! Seriously, she is doing very well with the pain meds and she is so happy that they are past the surgery part and onto healing!

While we are thrilled with the results and we know that the Lord had His Jehovah-Raffa hand on her we really had such a sense of peace that no matter what HE is and was in control! I could tell that my husband and his brother and dad were just breathing enough to live before the surgery was over. They could not eat and they were so quiet, but they were not afraid. It was like they were just in a quiet place with their Abba Father until they came to say that things were fine. After that, there was this corporate breath that they all took at one time! And they prayed and thanked the Lord for His presence.

Before they took her back we were in the prep area and my sweet husband asked that our family hold hands around her bed and pray. It was the first time that she cried. Just the sweetness of that moment standing before the Father as a family was really quite precious.

He is faithful. He is our Daddy, and we can't take ONE single step without Him!
Saturday, November 29, 2008

What Am I Thinkin?

I have 52 thousand things to do so I thought I would post! Great idea, huh? I mean with all five of you reading it I am sure you will be very enlightened. Why is it that when we have SO much to do we do things that really do not help. Blogging is not helping me clean, do laundry, get my fall stuff put away and attempt to get Christmas stuff out OR anything else remotely related to progress. Nope. Not a bit.

So, how are you? How was Thanksgiving? Ours was fun! I am glad we got to be with all of our fam and no one got hurt. Well, you know what I mean. The family thing CAN be a bit touchy at times. This year? We didn't touch anyone in the wrong way. BUT it's only Thanksgiving. Give us time. Christmas is on it's way!!

I am dang tired ya'll. Are YOU? I just don't know how being with family makes you this tired, but it does.

This Monday my mother-in-law is having her surgery. She's really being a trooper about it all. She told me that they have to take a copy of her living will with them to the hospital! HELLO! A little morbid, don't you think? She thinks. I have a feeling that she's going to come through this like a champ! Her attitude and her "lets-get-on-with-this-before-I-explode" mentality is what gave me that feeling.

Anyway, we decorated her house for Christmas yesterday because she is STILL planning on having the work Christmas party at her house. Even if she can't walk she is planning on having her house ready so that the office (not as seen on TV) can celebrate. Doesn't that make you feel like she's a little determined? Or crazy. You pick.

Ok, reality sets in. I gotta accomplish something. Though it is 10pm. I have a feeling I might not accomplish a lot.

Gobble. Gobble.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Christmas Getting to Know You

How about some Christmas Getting to Know You Tag?



1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I wrap MOST and I bag those things that are awkward... but I do color coordinate it all. One year I did all black and white houndstooth packages and my family had red bows and my husband's had green so we could tell them apart! This year I got some bright green plain paper and then I got red and white stripped paper too. I think it will look a little Grinch-ish, but it will be FUN!


2. Real tree or Artificial? Artificial AND pre-lit, but I miss the smell of the real one!




3. When do you put up the tree? I TRY to do it right after Thanksgiving, but it doesn't always happen like that!



4. When do you take the tree down? It depends. Some years I am OVER it and I am ready to put it all away. Some years I just love looking at the lights and I leave it up until I think people are ready to call me a redneck... then I take it down.



5. Do you like eggnog?NO- Yick!




6. Favorite gift received as a child? I am sad to say that I don't really remember a HUGE gift that stands out, but I did love getting an Easy Bake Oven!



7. Hardest person to buy for? all of the men in my family. They all claim to need nothing so I just wander around the mall in a total fog.



8. Easiest person to buy for? My mom! I could shop for her everyday!


9. Do you have a nativity scene? YES, but I would like to have more than one


10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail and it's usually a photo card



11. WORST CHRISTMAS GIFT U EVER RECEIVED? I don't really remember anything terrible either! I guess that's a good thing. Sometimes I would get clothes that were TOTALLY not me, but nothing horrid stands out.



12. Favorite Christmas Movie? I guess A Christmas Story... I don't really get into holiday movies so much... The Polar Express was SO amazing just in the animation


13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I try to be on the look out all year... If I see something I know someone might like I go ahead and get it.

14 . Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? not that I know of...

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? sweet potato casserole, this jello salad that my mother-in-law makes... me and my sister-in-law "fight" over it, all of the desserts... oh goodness!


16. Lights on the tree? white, please!

17. Favorite Christmas song?I like Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, but without "the fates allow" part... I love the songs about Jesus since THAT'S why we celebrate in the first place PEOPLE!


18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? lately we have stayed home. It has been SO nice.


19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer'? I don't think so... I have to sing the song... and even then I don't always get 'em.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? One on Christmas Eve and the rest on Christmas morning


22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? traffic and commercialism... AND the radio stations playing all Christmas BEFORE Thanksgiving! Give Thanksgiving a chance people!

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? Red, white and green and I love BELLS!


25. What do you want for Christmas this year? To spend time with my family and friends and I would not mind having an Ipod... and a new coat.

Ok, I tag Faith, Jennifer, Valarie, Amy E. and Amy G.!
Monday, November 24, 2008

Some Irony, Silliness and Flat Out Randomness

Remember the other day I wrote a post about comparing? WELL! Funny how God works, ya know? Today my devotion (from Beth Moore's John the Beloved Disciple) was based on this passage:

1 John 3:19-20
"This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in His presence whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and
He knows everything."
How about that? John struggled with a heart that condemned him? I mean so many times when I get all wopperjawed and sideways in my mind it's because my heart IS condemning me! It doesn't always take someone doing something to me in order for me to feel less! Sometimes I just get it in my mind somehow that I do not add up or that someone doesn't love me... YOU KNOW... all those crazy thoughts we get!!
TAKE HEART my sisters! GOD is greater than even our hearts! AND He knows EVERY single stinkin' thing that we feel and think! It's no surprise to HIM! AND I LOVE it so much that someone (obviously inspired by God and CHOSEN by God as a disciple to who followed Jesus Himself) dealt with similar issues!! It is such a comfort to know that He speaks to the problems that we face DIRECTLY!
Somebody said on the radio today that there are new age churches that are saying that God's Word isn't relevant to our lives today so they are not using them!! I BEG to differ!! What encouragement and relevance this has to me in my life on many occasions and this is just one little verse!! AND just one issue! I mean... come on! I have MANY issues!! Oh, yeah. I do.
Ok ... off the soapbox now.
So, guess what I did today? I set my car alarm off. While I was sitting in the stinkin' thing!!!! I tried and tried to turn it off. It would NOT stop! People were stopping and looking at me. I pressed the panic button. I pressed the lock button. I pressed the unlock button! It STILL blared!! BEEP!!! BEEP!!!!! BEEP!!!!!!!!! I put the key in the ignition. It beeped. I turned the car ON! It beeped. I mean I looked like a total idiot out there pressing buttons and looking all around my car trying to get the crazy thing to stop. FINALLY. I pressed the lock then the unlock. And it stopped. GLORY HALLELUJAH! I thought I was going to have to drive home with my car blaring... like I was a totally crazy criminal that just stole some girl's car with a monogram on the back! Praise Jesus it stopped. I just KNEW some cop would pass me and I would end up in jail.
Oh, did I mention I have issues?
Weeeelll, another thing that happened today is they called to schedule my daughter's MRI. I am NOT looking forward to having her put to sleep again (we just did this this summer for her to have teeth filled!) but I realize that this MRI will give us more info. and insight into her little head (literally!) so it's worth it. I mean, if it means we can help her more with therapy and school assistance then we need to do it. Her OT called today too. We just chatted about all of it. She is SOOO awesome and really understands all that we are trying to do to help our girl. It's great to have a team that is working with us who has dealt with all of this before.
Oh! Daggum it! I was going to add a recent picture of Caroline and I hit spell check instead! Did you know that pictures won't load after you do that?? Makes me so mad!!! Oh well.
It's that time of year again. It's my brother's birthday. He works at Lowes in the garden section. He paints some (like pictures, not houses... not like a painter but an artist... like the man with the afro that paints on PBS... because we don't have cable I see him every Saturday... ANOTHER issue). Anyhoo... I never know what to get him. It's the HARDEST thing on the planet. Yes, the planet.
Well, my kid is still up and it's almost 9. What kind of parent does that on a school night? Tomorrow is her Thanksgiving Feast at school. The food is so yummy!! We gotta go to bed!! Don't want to miss the turkey and dressing tomorrow for sure.... with 200 elementary aged students it should be a nice quiet Thanksgiving meal.
**THIS THING IS PUBLISHING ALL SQUISHED UP! I am sorry!! I tried to fix it!****
Saturday, November 22, 2008

Give Me a Birthday, Shower, Birthday and a Birthday... In That Order

Wow, it's a crazy weekend friends!

Yesterday was my mother-in-law's birthday! She is really doing AMAZINGLY well considering all that she is facing with her upcoming surgery to remove this cancer. She went for her pre-op stuff and already sports a very attractive hospital bracelet. "THANKS for the reminder!" she said! "Nothing like wearing this on your arm and total strangers asking what it's for!" She was laughing about it. Good for her!


My sister-in-law offered to take their small TV over to my in law's house for after the surgery. She said they could just put it in her bedroom so that she could have some entertainment during recovery. My MIL said, "Why? I am not planning on being in there that long!" YOU GO GIRL!


So today was a bridal shower for my friend Amy. She is getting married on December 6th and Caroline is in the wedding! She is SO excited!! I took my camera, but I was so busy that I really didn't get any good shots. Everything was pink, black and silver and we had lots of ribbons and balloons. I think she had a good time and she got some good loot!! I mean, some really nice presents from her thoughtful friends. One of our friends made the cake and it was hot pink with black polka dots and it was shaped like a gift!! CUTIE PATOOTIE!!


So now we are on to tomorrow and, you guessed it! Another important day to celebrate! My friend Jennifer is getting OLD! HA! (Well, she will never be older than me so I guess I need to watch the old jokes! Paybacks, ya know?)



Jennifer (on the left, with our sweet friend Faith on the right) and I met at church and over the years we have become pretty good buds! I remember the first time I met her she was standing in front of us at church. She is in really good shape and has a small frame. When she had her back to me I would have NEVER guessed that when she turned around she would be like 8 months pregnant! It was all in her tummy and I am sure my eyes were wide when she turned around and shook my hand!
Jen has a daughter that is a little older than my Caroline so it has been AWESOME to have someone who has "been there" in the not too distant future to call on for advice. They have been so sweet to pass on some hand-me-downs and her daughter has been such a good friend to my girl. We have babysat each other's kids and had many lunches, dinners and a few beach trips thrown in!
A couple of years ago I broke my wrist and Jennifer came to my house, fixed my child's hair, took her to pre-school AND brought her home on more than one occasion... because I could do NONE of it!! THAT is a friend for ya!
Our husbands both went to NC State (GO PACK! KILLED UNC today! SWEET!) and they are both engineers so when we are all together they have a few things in common too!
I guess I could go on and on! Jenn.. just know that I love you! I am glad that you are my friend and I appreciate all of the prayers and encouragement that you have given for the sake of my family! You are a sweet, sweet friend and I am thankful that the Lord put you in my life!
OH YEA! After tomorrow... which would be Monday... we will celebrate Jennifer's DAUGHTER'S birthday too!
WOO HOO! Let the good times roll!! Where's the cake!?
Friday, November 21, 2008

Sometimes I Compare

I sometimes get it in my mind that I don't add up.

I look at friends who are more creative, more talented in some area or skinnier than me and I get the thought that I am, somehow, less.

I think we all do this to some degree and sometimes we are harder on ourselves than other times. Right now isn't a bad time for me. That's not what I'm saying. It's just that I know that I have good times and bad times.

Do you do this? Do you look at the positives in others and allow them to highlight your negatives? Ok, maybe they are negatives, but they are differences and sometimes we see them as negatives. It's hard, isn't it?

I see a girl with a super cute straight hair cut... and mine is curly, and I think.. it would never do that!
I see hear a girl sing that can hit notes that I could never reach.. unless you pinched me! And I think I could never do that!
Or I see things that people have made or can do with their hands and I think that I could never make something look like that!

Well, it's true we all compare ourselves sometimes. It's a part of life I think!

Today I read this:

"I have redeemed you. I have called you by name. You are Mine." Isaiah 43:1b

It made me think that no matter how much I compare myself to someone else... the Lord loves ME. He came to redeem ME and He knows MY name.

And He did the exact same for YOU.

Lord, I thank you for my curly hair. I thank you for the gifts that I DO have and I praise you for the way that you came and died for ME. Please help me to look at You and the things that You have for me and not around at what I may not have. You made each of us in Your image and we all have abilities that are special to us. Thank you! Please forgive me for not being thankful enough and help me to see the special plan that you have for me. May I pursue YOU with all of my heart and not what others have or may do. You are God and You are mine! I praise you Lord! I praise You...
Thursday, November 20, 2008

First Grade Fieldtrip Fun

Earlier this week we went on a field trip to a park that is about 45 minutes from our school. I had never been before, but it was really fun!! They had all sorts of animals and a few rides as well as a BIG playground. It was a great place for 100 first graders to go play!

Here's Caroline looking at a snake. Eewww! Of course she kept tapping the glass! Oh! I hate snakes!! Yes, they are God's beautiful creatures, but I don't have to like 'em! YICK!
Next we went to a little animal show where they let the kids TOUCH a snake (EEww!) and a chinchilla and a komoto dragon. (How would you like to have that name? It just sounds ferocious!)
Then they rode on a little train. Here she is with her buddy, Tanner. It was FREEZING out there so everyone had on their coats!! Except Tanner.


Then they headed to the merry-go-round. Caroline is not too sure about that going around AND up and down at the same time so she always chooses the seat. Lots of moms would not even get near it for the sheer fact of it going around so she was in good company!

Next they ate lunch and then went to the playground. They had some really neat things for the kids to play on. Here is some sort of structure that everyone agreed must have been designed by some engineer somewhere! It was really cool and it had ropes inside it like a spider web. The kids loved it!
They also had these swings that were like HUGE baby swings. There was a handicapped sign on the playground so we thought they might have been designed for kids with special needs! HOW COOL IS THAT!? A playground after my own heart! In this picture the air holes in the swing are right at her ears. She looks like Doctor Spock!

After we played we were almost completely frozen! The kids had a ball and it was a great way to learn something new and play all at the same time!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Fall Fun




Here's the silly girl SWEEPING leaves with her "sweep!" Her daddy was in the yard raking.



Here's the conversation:



"Mom, where's my sweep?"



"I think it's in the back yard."



"No, it's not. YOU find it."



"No, I don't want it. YOU find it."


Goes to the back yard. Comes back with arms hanging low and head down, carrying a little shovel from the sand box.


"What's wrong?"



"It's not back there and daddy is having all the fun! I am just going to use this shovel!!"



"Why don't you look in the garage with the other brooms?"



"Oh! Yea!"



Comes back with a huge grin, carrying her 'sweep', sweeps the leaves then jumps in them and they go EVERYWHERE! She is NONE too sad about it either!


It's funny to think that the things that we think are fun when we are young are SO not fun when we grow up! I remember thinking that washing the car was fun! Raking the leaves... til I had blisters on my hands was FUN! I think our perspectives change as we age and I definitely think that I need to see God's blessings as FUN and not chores!

What a gift to have fall leaves all around us. They are beautiful and I have a YARD for them to fall into!

Just today Caroline said, "Mom, look at the leaves. They are so pretty. They are all over the ground. Don't you love it?"

Yes, I DO love it! I guess I just need to show it more!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Neurology Helps!

Who knew?? Ha!
Some of you have been so precious to ask what we found out with our girl. I posted this on my special needs blog, but thought I would add a little to it and post it here too.

Of course we know that doctors are in their fields because they have a heart to help others and they have studied their behinds off to understand more about our mysterious bodies. Well, that was exactly the case with us on Friday when Caroline got to see a neurologist for the first time!! I am so thankful for our OT who worked hard to get us in! God is so good, ya'll!! I am amazed at how He has provided for us through our school, OT, psychologist, and now this neurologist!! WOO HOO! God is good!

We are going to have an MRI and some blood work done so that they can learn a few new things about our girl.

1) They will look at her thyroid and other indicators about her muscle tone... which apparently is "low" or floppy.

2) They will look at her frontal lobe in her brain to determine if there is a disconnect somehow in between her brain and her ocular nerves (which help you with eye movement and control).

3) They will also look to see if there are any areas that might be affected that could cause permanent learning disabilities.

4) They also want to see if she might be a candidate for vision therapy that might strengthen her eyes and give her more ability to stay focused on a task for longer periods of time. Therapy in OT has helped her be able to stay in her seat longer and pay attention so other therapies might enhance that. We just need to know for sure before we spend all that dough!

There are some pretty interesting things that this kid is doing that is leading us to want to know more.

1) She can spell words aloud, but writes the correct letters in a different order on paper. Hmmm... interesting, huh? Even simple words she will say (for example) "I-T" for "it" but sometimes writes "T-I". WHY is that? We are not sure if she is flipping them in her head or if there is a processing problem that causes her to not be able to get words from her head to her hand and then onto the paper. It's called dysgraphia. Sort of like dyslexia, but it's with writing instead of reading.

2) She is beginning to read and do math, but math is slower... so they will look at whether or not she is right brained or left brained and see where her strengths are. The eye thing could have something to do with it being difficult to stay on task too. If she can't control her eyes then she can't stay focused. Can we fix it? I don't know!
3) She does some different behaviors that seem autistic in nature, but her verbal abilities are so strong that they don't think it's autism. They think it's "stereotypies" which is like a behavior disorder that we HOPE will correct itself as she get older (or as peers begin to ask "what's that you do with your hands?" she will want to stop!).

Anyway, I am thankful that we can have this insight into her little head and see what all is going on. I just really feel that the Lord is showing us that He is working all of this for His good and one day He is going to show her and us just what a special plan He has for her.

In the mean time we will just be thrilled with this:
Thursday, November 13, 2008

Awesome Praises

 

077

 

See those two?

 

Well the one on the left... with her hand in the air... I have asked you to pray for her and have shared a little about her life (all seven years of it) since we have entered the world of occupational therapy and sensory integration issues.

 

The one on the right is the sweet mother-in-law that I recently asked you all to pray for as she found cancer in her body and will have to have it removed.

 

WELL! GUESS what God is up to?

 

Yesterday our little one was tested again just to see where she is with her balance, fine and gross motor skills, auditory processing, motor planning and other skills. We are preparing for tomorrow when she will see a neurologist who is going to help us to know if we are on the right track with treatment and whether or not we need to seek out more intense therapy. SHE DID SO GOOD! I mean, we are not where we need to be, but some of the things that they initially tested her for are not as big of an issue anymore. She still needs therapy and we still need to know answers to some questions about why she does certain things and how she processes things, BUT she is improving and we are just praising the LORD!!

 

Now, the other great news is that my MIL got some test results from 2 biopsies yesterday and they both came back NORMAL! Which means that the cancer had not spread to the immediate surrounding area of the effected place and that perhaps it has not spread to the lymph nodes. OH. MY. WORD. It was just the best news. We still will not know anything for sure until they do the surgery, but we will take it!! Are you kidding me?? We will take it!

 

SO... PRAISE THE LORD!! We are just thankful for little steps and are continuing to pray for more good results as things progress for both of these sweet ladies. I love them both and it is good to see the Lord at work.

 

Where ever you are. What ever you are facing... no matter how hard or uncertain... bring it to the feet of the Father and lay it down. Over and over again if you have to. But let Him work. He is NOT going to leave us without hope. He is NOT going to allow us to carry more than we can bear. It may seem like it, but he PROMISED... PROMISED... that He would never leave us. And He can not break promises. He just can't.

Monday, November 10, 2008

What Bugs Ya?

This cute blog had a list of pet peeves the other day. This this funny blog had a list of songs that really get on her nerves a few weeks ago. It is pretty funny to see the things that get on people's nerves so here are my two lists:

Pet Peeves

1) Hearing people chew their food

2) Seeing people chew their food

3) Hearing people slurp their drinks ( And I have 2 of the biggest smackers right here in my house! OH. MY. WORD. They send me over the edge sometimes!)

4) Men trying to drive and talk on the cell phone (they are NOT multi-taskers... so they need to stop. it. right. now.)

5) Rude people

6) flat soft drinks- YUCK!

7)mail stacked up in my kitchen

8) kids talking back to their parents

9) being unorganized (which, at times, makes me get on my OWN nerves!)

10) Repetitive questions (I stole this one from this blog, but it's SO true!)

Ok... now for the songs... this cracked me up AND I sang them the rest of the day! Oh my gosh! They got on my nerves so bad, but it made me laugh so here we go!

1) AAAfternoon Delight

2) Kokomo

3) Bright Eyes... every now and then I fall apart... and I need you now tonight and I need you more than ever! (please!)

4) Delta Dawn... what's that flower you have on?

5) Anything Culture Club

6) Like a Virgin

7) Hello... is it me your looking for? I can see it in your eyes...

Ok... I know that there are more.. I just can't think of them right now! What about you!!?

***EDITED TO ADD MY HUSBAND'S OPINIONS!****

1) Spandau Ballet's AH AH AH AH AHHH I Know This Much is TRUE!

2) Sting's King of Pain

3) Tainted Love... I want to // get away I want to // run away

4) Red Red Wine (actually this is one that I remembered)

5) Bette Middler's From A Distance
Sunday, November 9, 2008

Please Pray

I will apologize from the start because this post will be a little heavy. It's something that I want to write because hopefully it will cause you to think about your loved ones in a new light.

Sometimes there are things that come into our lives that we never expect. Cancer is one of those things. This week we got news that my mother-in-law has a gynocological form of it, and it has stopped me dead in my tracks.

It has been a real shock mainly because she is the healthiest one in my entire family!! She plays tennis on a Senior's team and has amazing arms that I could only dream of having! She eats right. She walks and plays tennis quite a bit. She's healthy!

She is a very talented cook. She is a very talented seamstress who can sew like a fiend! And she's a woman who loves Jesus. Her faith is what has sustained her through the loss of a baby many years ago and the loss of both of her parents. She is organized, has the cleanest house in the world, and she is really really strong.

But this week she learned that she will have to have surgery to remove cancer from her body. We don't know what all she will have to endure, but we do know that she will endure! She has a positive outlook and a desire to get back out on that tennis court so she is rarin' to go... eager to beat this and ready to get on with life.

Thing is... this has made my husband, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, and me look at our family in a whole new light. We have thought to pray for her and each other each and every day. We have thought about what WE eat, how much WE exercise (or not!) and how much we talk to each other in a given week... month.. year. We have thought more about HOW we pray for one another, and how we think of each other.

Sad, isn't it? To think that something like cancer has to wake us up! I guess we are only human, but it's still sad that the human race has to face scary circumstances just to realize exactly what we have and realize that we had better take care of it... of them... before they are taken from our reach.

Will you please pray for us if the Lord brings us to your mind? We are trusting our Heavenly Father and realizing that He is still God no matter what! He IS in control and He is worthy of our praise. This is not only our attitude, but it's her attitude and that makes it such a gift to our entire family... to see her face this with a determined spirit to continue to serve the Lord no matter what!

Let me encourage you... GO TO THE DOCTOR every year!! Do not put it off thinking that you are just fine! GO! PLEASE GO! Have your mammograms! Do what the doctors tell you to do. Exercise! Eat right! I know it's hard... BELIEVE ME! I am the LOVER of sweets of all kinds!! But we have to take care of ourselves!! The doctors say that this is greatly in her favor and will help her heal. We have to do the same!

Thank you in advance for your prayers! God is good... ALL the time!
Saturday, November 8, 2008

Writer's Block

I have tried to write an entry over the last few days like 25 different times, but every time I sit down I just stare... at the screen... like I want to write something, but I just can't! What's up with that? I hate it when I KNOW that I have not been still for more than 5 seconds and yet I think I have nothing to write about!

Side note: Our daughter is in the bed and we can hear her making rooster noises. WHAT in the world?

So the little frogs died. Yeah. It was sad. I thought it was strange though when the instructions that came with them only required us to feed them twice a week and it never said anything about cleaning their little aquarium thingy or anything! Don't you think you need to keep their little aquatic environment clean? I mean, it came with a snail and all and it was suppose to keep it clean... all by it's little self? I don't think so! It died too. Oh well. I guess we aren't the froggy type! Caroline seemed to take it well. Since she looked at the maybe 10 times in a month!!!

Tomorrow is church and I always love going! Today's devotion in my John (Beth Moore) study was about Peter being so overtaken with seeing Jesus on the shore after His resurrection that he jumped out of his boat and swam to Him! Beth (like she's my friend) made the point that we should be so excited to see Him that we will go to any cost to get to Him. It doesn't matter what others think of our craziness!! I would rather be crazy about worshipping Jesus than crazy out of my mind!! He's the reason that I am half sane to begin with so He deserves my worship and no man's opinion of that worship should stop me! I want to worship with full abandon!!

I hope you have a great day at church tomorrow. No matter what you are facing He will meet you there! Go to worship Him with all you've got!

Hopefully next time I will have pictures or something!! WOW! Dead frogs and worshipping Jesus. This may be the strangest post ever written. Ever.
Thursday, November 6, 2008

In All Things...

I need to remember that God IS in control.

He IS on His throne.

He IS NOT afraid and He holds all things together in His hands.

He is perfect.

He is holy.

He deserves all of my praise regardless of how my outlook seems.

He is not shaken nor caught by surprise.

He is all powerful.

He is righteous and His plans are perfect though I do not understand.

My heart may grow weary but He is enough to carry me.

He is able. Able to see past the immediate future and into eternity.

Able to carry me when I can not take another step.

Able to hold me and wipe my tears.

Able to strengthen me to bear the load.

Able to bring about the impossible.

And He IS my Abba Daddy that can not fail.

In all things.. I have to remember that He is.

And it HAS to be enough for me.
Thursday, October 30, 2008

Croakin' Frog?

Oh ya'll. I think one of the frogs is seriously croaking!

Like kicking the little froggy bucket. Like he's going to meet his little froggy maker... seriously.

He's floating near the top and then he gets a little kick in his step and sort of swims... sort of. And then he sort of floats again. Like near the top... with his little froggy feet hanging behind him.

I fed them (there's two... I would link you back to my post about us getting the little guys, but I don't know how!! Sorry!) and he tried to get some food, but he missed... and missed... and missed again.

He would be no good at catching flies. He would starve to death he's such a bad aim!

Then once I saw the other little froggy (they don't have names either. Bless their hearts. That's why he's dying! He's having an identity crisis. I keep calling them "Him"s but they might be hers! SEE? poor guys... or girls) tried to get under the floaty one and nudge him. Bless it!! I feel sorry for the little guys.

Are frogs social creatures? Like if this one dies will the other one die too of a broken heart or something?

NOT to mention that Caroline doesn't know yet. I am going to give it a little while before I mention it. Don't you think?

Maybe he's just tired today and wants to float. I would like to float sometimes. Especially when I am tired.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Hey! Here's Some Randomness for YA!

How are all 5 of you? I am good today thanks! I just came from Wal-Mart(s), and the bargains? Well, they are just amazing at the Wal-Mart(s), ya know? I got some cute closed-toed brown shoes for $13. I think that's pretty good. (Is it closed toe? closed toed? oh, who cares!)

I also got some fabric so that Caroline can be a Bible character for school on Friday. I REALLY hope this works out. She has been hilarious about who she wants to be and all.

"Why can't I just be a butterfly?" she asked.
"Uh, well. That's not a Bible character!?"
"Well, I know about Adam and Eve. You know, they ate the apple, they lied to God and they listened to the serpent." (yes, she said serpent!)
"Yes, you could do that!"
"Well, I don't have a boy."
"Huh? You don't have a boy?"
"NOOO! Mom! It's ADAM AND EVE! You have to have a boy."
"Oh, that's a problem then, huh?"
"Yea. I will just be Noah."
"But HE'S a boy."
"Oh. Yea."

Oh goodness.

So we kept talking and discussing and trying to think of girls in the Bible. We have decided on Lydia. She sold purple cloth and Caroline has the sweetest Bible story in one of her Bibles about Lydia coming to Jesus. I am sure there will be pictures to come! We shall see!

We are off to Occupational Therapy today and I am looking forward to discussing Caroline's upcoming Neurology appointment with them. They have scheduled the doctor to come to OT one day in November and he will observe and meet us there before we move on to other possible appointments. I am really excited about this because Caroline is VERY nervous (like more than your average bear) about doctors. At OT they will play with Caroline while the MD talks to me and my husband and then we will move on from there. I hope he doesn't think we all need an MRI! HA! You just never know!

Well, off to clean and do laundry! The laundry... seriously.. I am JUST OVER IT! I mean it is SO time consuming and NEVER ENDING! It's a little cold to be naked though. Although... going commando has crossed my mind. NO! I am not going to do that!! I just thought it...

Hence, the possible MRI!
Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Happy Fall Ya'll!

This past weekend we went to a Sunday school social at a pumpkin patch/corn maze/bonfire place. I guess otherwise known as a farm. There were tractors and hay bails and animals to pet and all... AND it was really fun!


Here are the kids (and some adults) waiting to get on the trailer that took us to the fun!



They had this ride that they had put together where they used barrels to make little cows. The cows were all attached and they pulled them behind a 4 wheeler. The kids would get into the cows and they would pull them all over the place. The kids had a ball and every time they would come back saying "that's bouncy!"

Here's Caroline and Rebecca rarin' to go! YEE HA!






We had lots of fun going through the corn maze, but it sure was muddy! I wore boots that are OLD and they are slick on the bottom. I had to work hard not to bust it several times while trying to make my way through the maze. Oh and my friends WOULD have laughed. Oh yes they would!



The kids did a great job of helping us find the posts and at each post we had to answer a question. If we got the answer right we were told to go one way, but if we got it wrong... well, we were pretty sure we got it right since we took the kid version along with us. ha! I mean one question was "What do chickens lay?" Come on now! Here they are ready to answer the question so we can move on!!




Check out these little cuties! They are twins, but no one would ever know!! They are our friends, Brandon and Emily's, little guys..


Brady







And Cooper!


I can hardly stand the cuteness!

So we saw bunnies and horses and played in a big box of corn... ate s'mores and roasted marshmallows and sang happy birthday to our friend Danny... we let the kids swing and slide and we just had a grand ol' time!

By the end of the night we were all exhausted. Everyone was ready to get on the trailer and head back to our cars. We were tired, muddy and smelled like smoke, but we had had a great time celebrating fall!


Caroline and our sweet friend Emma! We love our friends!




Sunday, October 26, 2008

Pop Panic!



See that? THAT my friends is a Pucker Pop. Personally I don't think that version of the Pucker Pop is so cute, HOWEVER when they put a monogram or personalize it for you with something super cute... well, NOW we are talkin'! They are super fun and if you are interested in personalizing some for yourself or your business I would love to hear from you! They would make SUPER Christmas gifts from a company or for a school!!


Well, my daughter's school is a k-12 school which means that when the high school kids have a ball game, pep rally or special event, even the kindergartners get in on the act. It's pretty fun!


So some of the football moms found out that I sell these Pucker Pops and that they could get our school logo printed on them. They were so excited and so was I!! They decided that they wanted some to sell at Homecoming as a neat concession momento, and I decided THAT was a grand idea!


We placed the order in plenty of time. The company called and sent me the image that looked something like this....
That's the logo printed directly on the candy! It is really cool and they taste great!
So... I approved it and we waited and waited. This company is usually great about shipping in a timely manner so I didn't worry. UNTIL... the week of Homecoming they had still not arrived on my doorstep via my friendly little UPS man.
I e-mailed. They responded with "we will let you know tomorrow about the status of your shipment." Ok, I had e-mailed towards the end of the day. That's fair.
Soo.. we waited... I e-mailed again and I got a message back from the owner's Blackberry. Bless their hearts... their company had lost power and were unable to get the order shipped until 2 days before Homecoming!!
WHAT WAS I TO DO?? Oh, I just prayed that it would be an exceptionally good UPS day and that they would drive those little brown trucks quickly to my door!
The next day the weather man was calling for a cold Friday with a fair amount of rain. I really didn't think much about it since I was so worried about the suckers. My phone rang that Thursday and it was my friend Susan. "GIRRRL. You are gonna die! They have postponed the Homecoming game until next week due to the RAIN!"
SERIOUSLY?? Who cancels Homecoming?? Due to all that they had planned the school decided that Homecoming court would have pneumonia and that the parents would not want to sit in the freezing rain so there would be no fans. So they seriously cancelled Homecoming!
The suckers arrived the NIGHT of the original Homecoming date and we lived happily ever after.
The end.
Saturday, October 25, 2008

Lots to Tell You!

But not a lot of time because I am so dang tired! (say that last word as suthern as you can... Tiiired... yea, that's it. THAT's how I feel. Not tired. TIIIRED.)

There was the luncheon that I was gonna have that I didn't have because my kid got sick.

Then there was the hayride that was fun and full of friends that we haven't hung out with in a while. It included a corn maze and everything! And Smores! YUM!

AND there's the story of the suckers that I ordered for our school that didn't come on time for Homecoming, but who cares now because they postponed it! The homecoming that is... so yay God! He is amazing!


So I have pictures and funny things to say to all 5 of you so when I rest and can put a thought together I will have things to share! I know you are on the edge of your seat. Yes, you are!

Night night! Can't wait to read about YOUR adventures too! :)
Happy Fall ya'll!
Thursday, October 23, 2008

AND Wouldn't You KNOW...

He waited in line for an hour for the BBQ and they RAN OUT!

That's what we get for arguing.

Vengence is Mine sayeth the Lord!

Lovin' Fall and Some Randomness!

Hey Blogland! Have you guys registered for that AWESOME tote on Faith's blog yet? You seriously need to! It's an awesome thing!! About 5 people read this blog so I don't know if I am helping her effort, but if you have not registered head on over! She'd love to have ya!

And are you lovin' fall? It's so fun when the weather changes and the leaves are just beautiful! Oh, I love it! AND last night we all ran upstairs to get our SOCKS on! We love to get into our cozy PJ's and get our socks when it's cold outside. Caroline was a little sad because she couldn't reach her sock drawer!


Pumpkins and leaves and colors galore! It's really amazing that the Lord can do all that He does simply in nature! Not to mention in our hearts!! What a mighty God we serve!


Today is SUPER HERO CARTOON CHARACTER day at school.



What. in. the. world??



Has anyone ever heard of such randomness? It's really spirit week and yesterday was tacky day so I guess we can wear capes to school today, huh? I just imagine ninja children terrorizing one another! AND today's chapel! Maybe the ninjas with give their hearts to Jesus. It's possible!



Our first grader is not into the super hero scene, but she likes the Disney princess stuff so she wore her Tinkerbell shirt and a tutu ...with a matching hair bow, I might add! At least we are trying to participate! I can hear the boys now, "THAT'S NOT A SUPER HERO!"



I told her to ignore the boys.



AND tonight is a big BBQ in our neck of the woods! Every year this church puts on a HUGE BBQ and they rope off the street and have police directing traffic and all of the local politicians are there with their signs and the food is DELISH! We always argue about who's going to sit in line to get our share.



Him- "You know! It's the big BBQ! 4th Thursday of every October!"
Me- "Yea! Now you can not leave at 6:30, get in line and be home for us to eat so I can leave and go to accountability by 7."
Him- "Oh, I can't? Well, I was hoping YOU would go get it after school."
Me- "Oh! Well, it's on YOUR way home from work!"
Him- "I guess we will just talk this afternoon and decide!"
Me- "I guess we will!"


Sad, people. We are sad!



Well, I hope you have a nice fall day! Enjoy the views and eat a little BBQ! Would love to hear how you celebrate fall! All 5 of you! :)
Monday, October 20, 2008

A Possible Math Miracle?

Oh. My. Word. I am almost beside myself!

Last night I was online for a while looking for things to help us with our math difficulties in first grade. I wanted to find SOMETHING that would give us a practical visual that Caroline could use in the classroom when no visual is given. Like sometimes they use blocks to count with, but sometimes the don't! When they don't... girlfriend is totally in the dark! Even when they DO she still struggles.

So... this summer she was in math camp. (I know. Bless her heart. Other kids were in some amazing camp where they rode on zip lines, splashed happily into the water and swam until their heart's content. My kid? Math camp.) But in math camp they did Touch Math one day. I taught it a little when I taught first grade, but I sorta forgot about it. WELL! TO MY DELIGHT! There is an entire program using Touch Math!

(Now I bet you are thinking," YOU taught first grade and you are struggling THIS much with your own kid? Trust me. It's much harder when it's your own kid. TRUST ME!)

What you do is assign dots to each number and that gives the kids a visual to help them add! Number one gets one dot. Number two gets two dots...etc! It's SO cool! AND you can use a FREE tutorial video for teachers and parents!! Oh my word!

We used it a little this morning and she actually seemed to do pretty well. OH! Please pray that this clicks with her and that math begins to pick up! We are so wanting this to be fun for her and with 11 years of school ahead of us... starting to hate it NOW would just make all involved want to jump off a bridge... or something.
Friday, October 17, 2008

It Started OUT Fun and End Fun, But the In Between?

Well, we started the week with a choir recording session two nights in a row (and that's really fun to me) lunch with friends and my mother-in-law spending time with my little one one afternoon. All of that was REALLY good and fun and all... then Wednesday afternoon came and it got a little hard for me.

I took Caroline to therapy and while we were there we discussed her school work (which was good for the most part. Math is killing her right now) and the inconsistencies that she's experiencing in behaviors from one day to another. I JUST asked if meds might need to come into play was all!! Then as they were doing some therapy on her stomach, Caroline's legs started this twitching thing that she has done since she was a baby. This was the first time that her OT had noticed it and it REALLY bothered her.

So, the possibilities of meds and the leg thing brought on ...."and maybe we just need to schedule an appointment with a neurologist."
My stomach sank.
It just made me so scared of what they might find and what we might have to go through with Caroline. It bothered me that she gets SO anxious about going to the doctor anyway, and then to add ANOTHER visit sometimes sends her over the edge.

Then there is the thought of ANOTHER way that I need to come to terms with the fact that my kid isn't normal. I know!! I know! Who knows what normal is??? Well, I can tell you what it isn't!! It ISN'T going to OT every other week. It isn't being pulled for help with school work 4 out of 5 days and it isn't going to be tested psychologically OR NEUROLOGICALLY!

She's so sweet, funny and smart in so many ways. She's improving and growing and doing pretty well, but this just made me sad!! I cried on the way home from OT and Thursday I was a wreck! I cried several times and each time I talked with family or friends it just brought on the water works! I just felt very scared, alone and tired of this never ending road.

SO today we had her fall party at school. She had such a good time! She played with her friends and my mom even came to help out. You gotta love it when your mom comes! I think it was God's way of saying, "I am here. It's ok. We will walk this road together."

Lord, THANK YOU for being with me through my sweet husband, family and friends. The hard times grow a little easier when You allow them to come along side me. I pray for Caroline, Lord. Help us to know how to teach her math. Help them to show us what is going on with her in more detail so that she might improve all around. Lord, You are in control! Help me to rest in that.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Love Came Gently

Today we are in the middle of recording a CD at our church for our upcoming Christmas musical. It's really pretty exciting and I love to sing so it's a lot of fun too! We had to be there last night for our first night of recording and everyone seemed to be pretty pumped to do this. The Praise Teams were there first so we had to wait for a little while 'til they wrapped things up. Then we headed into the choir suite and sang our little hearts out for about three hours!

Today, for some reason there is this one line from one of the songs that I just keep singing in my head over and over again. The song is called "Love Came Gently" and the lyrics explain how Jesus was born in a lowly manger... and how "only the shepherds and the 'wisest' found Him beneath the star so bright.."

But at the end of the song this statement is the one that gets me every time....

"And for those who trust in the Savior
Love comes gently still today."

It makes me tear up just typing it! And if you could hear the music and how beautifully this line is sung... well, it would bring tears to your eyes too!

There are many things that my family, friends and I are facing right now. So many around us are dealing with uncertain futures and how we will cope with the economy. Uncertainties about finances and jobs.

And yet, this past Sunday night our pastor preached about "those who trust in the Savior." He reminded us that the Bible predicts (in Revelation) that these types of hardships will come, and yet those who trust in the Savior can find peace because He's still in control.

It is not by running a big presidential campaign claiming all that he might do when He becomes president.

It's not by standing in the middle of Wall Street and proclaiming His power.

It's not by any trickery or claim that if you invest in this area or take that job that your security will be guaranteed.

No. The song also says "choosing instead a humble birth." Jesus didn't come in fanfare then and He doesn't come in fanfare now!

What it IS is a gentle reminder that His love and His sustaining grace holds us through it all.

My heart breaks for those who don't know our Savior. I just wonder how they make it through the day without the assurance that everything holds together in Him!? (Colossians 1:17) I know that those of us who DO know Him still feel that sense of panic at times. We are human and we do know worry and concern and a real longing for direction, but we also know that we can call on the Name of Jesus and He can comfort us beyond those fears.

I just pray that we are sharing Him with others. I pray that we are trusting Him with our own lives and that we are realizing His gentle love as we walk through these days. He's still here. He's still in control, and He's still on His throne.

"And for all who TRUST in the Savior... Love comes gently... STILL today."
Monday, October 13, 2008

When The Toothfairy Forgets!

Just before we left for Disney on Ice... let's see... that was... OH! Thursday night... Caroline lost a tooth!

Now, let me just clarify here. We have not just had a normal tooth growing and losing history.

When she was three months old... yes, I said THREE months... girlfriend got her first TWO teeth! From that point on she has had teeth galore! She started losing teeth at FOUR! She has swallowed teeth. She has gotten quarters for teeth and then swallowed one of those!! She has thrown teeth in the big trash can at church and we had to dig through old lunches to try to find it!! OH! The tooth drama at this house!

I am kind of over it.

SO... we lost another tooth. Well, of course she was so excited that the toothfairy would come, and she had the tooth on the counter in the kitchen in a paper towel so we would not forget! We got home late that night so naturally? We forgot.

The next day she put it under her pillow early so that we would be ALL ready for the MONEY! I mean, toothfairy. She took a nap that day and was up looking under her pillow to see if the fairy functions during the day. No such luck.

That night we went to bed... talking about the toothfairy... ready to get up the next day (this is Saturday by now) but apparently the toothfairy went to sleep earlier than she usually does and again, she forgot!

Last night, we were all safely tucked in our beds when it hit me!

"Honey, did the toothfairy come?"
"Uh, I don't know! Did SHE?"
"Oh, PLEASE go downstairs and get a dollar out of your wallet! YOU do it this time!"
Tip toeing down stairs, then back up, then a little creeeek of her door. Then VOICES! YIKES! She woke up!
He comes in... "She was staring me in the face! I asked if she was ok and she just turned over and went back to sleep!"
"Do you think she knew??"
"No! But what if we've forgotten all of these nights only to RUIN it for her tonight!"

Well, toothfairy! I guess that's what we get!
Friday, October 10, 2008

A Disney Surprise

This week Disney on Ice is here in Charlotte. My husband and I had talked about taking Caroline, but I have been sick. Yesterday we just decided to do it! She didn't have school today so she (and I!) could sleep in some soooo... why not!?

We did not tell her what we were doing so when my husband got home from work we told her to get a jacket. "Why do I need a jacket?" She kept asking over and over again! She kept asking where we were going and we said, "Somewhere fun! Just trust us!" So then she wanted "secrets" about where we were going. "You mean CLUES?" we asked!




We told her we were going somewhere fun, cold and it started with a "D".

Her guess... "We are going to the doctor?" HA!
When we arrived the scene with Ariel from The Little Mermaid was on the ice.

Under Da Sea




Ursala and Ariel



The Prince!



Next the ice and scenes changed to the safari and out came The Lion King!



Acuna Matada

If you look at the bottom of the picture you can see Simba lying on a leaf.



At times the set was quite elaborate! I thought they did a really great job!


After The Lion King they had intermission and we were off to the potty! Well, you know that means SUPER expensive souvenirs that light up and just call out "BUY ME!" to the little kids!

A snowcone was $11!! OH MY WORD! We settled for some cotton candy that had a fairy hat attached. It was the most reasonable and we could all share the candy! Here she is with her new fairy hat!


After intermission the entire last scene was about Tinker Bell. It was a little long because we weren't familiar with how Tink got her wings. It was really cute though...


Here's the queen of the fairies talking to Tink about her gifts.


(Check out that dress!)




Here's Tink after she's sprinkled with pixie dust and gets her wings.

And a snazzy new outfit!




Here's Donald Duck and Goofy celebrating spring after all of the fairies bring it to earth.

(Not exactly Biblically based, ya think!?)


On the way home she talked and talked about all of the things she saw. It was a fun night! Here she is with her new Cinderella doll that she begged for as a keepsake from her night at Disney!