Sunday, April 27, 2008

Weekend Sports

Well it rained Friday in the middle of the night, but God was good, and all games and festivities went on anyway! So, much to their excitement (and mine!), Jonah and Noah played their first tball game. They were so precious! I am having a very hard time believing they're old enough to be on the field! It seems like yesterday when they were going to all their brother's games in their jammies and the twin stroller. :( Yes, I confess, that makes me so sad.
But they had a blast! They were both hitting the ball, and they never, NOT ONCE, ran the wrong way! Go, Babies!!! This one particular time, though, Jonah was catcher, and when he got the ball and the time came for him to start getting kids out, he had the glove on his left hand, the ball was in the glove, and he was tagging people with his other hand. The coaches started yelling, "Tag him with the ball!" to which Jonah replied, "I can't! It's dirty!" Yes, we had several good laughs. And Todd admitted to the whole audience that that was his son. Too funny!
Graham and Drew's team was on fire! They have an incredible team, and they are all very good! Graham and Drew were hitting every ball and getting kids out left and right. I was having so much fun cheering for them, I didn't think I'd be able to stand it. This is my most favorite time of year. Surrounded by friends, cheering my kids on, then standing back at the end and watching as the coach then leads the team in a Bible study. Very cool. And God is at the very center of it all. Awesome! It makes this Momma's heart so full, almost to the point of bursting.
This is why we're doing church sports. We had a bad experience with our town's sports. Too competitive, and too much mean~ness. We just want our boys to learn how to play on a team, fairly, and how to be good sports. And they are good, let me tell you, and they are LOVING being able to play on such a good team, with other Christian kids. It's nice not having to worry what comes out of the spectator's mouths. Except when their Mimi yelled, "Step on him, Drew!" I had to tell her we are not allowed to tell them to step on each other. Even if they were in his way. We are to play nicely, no matter what. So next time, Mimi, no trash talk. Just joking, she really wasn't that bad, but she did yell that at Drew. Lucky for her, no one really heard.
ONLY FOUR MORE WEEKS OF SCHOOL!!!! Thank You, Jesus, for getting us through this year! And Thursday night, my hubby, some friends and I are going to see Casting Crowns! This is my early mother's day present. I'm so excited!! I love them, and cannot WAIT to go to the concert!!! Plus, they're FINALLY going to be finished with my house this week!!! Yay!!! I get to go meet with the principal this week and request their teachers for next year. And this week is also pre~registration for kindergarten. :( Another busy week, but one filled with much excitement! More later...hopefully I will post some pics. No promises, though. 'Night.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Laughter or Tears?

I am choosing joy. I am choosing to rejoice in this glorious day that God has made. And I am choosing not to complain and whine, and freak out over money. I am choosing joy, even if it kills me!!!! Tim, you asked what was the latest and where are the pics? Well, the latest is that they are finished with the floor, and are coming tomorrow and Friday to paint the baseboards and do touch ups on other painting and to fix the holes they put in the walls. The sink will be installed next Tuesday. The pictures haven't been taken yet, because everything is still dirty. There's going to be another mess once the painter comes, so I'm not ready to clean yet.

I'm reminding myself to choose joy because the plumber is back again fixing our new leak. We found it last night. The positive side to this (and there aren't many) is that the new leak is in the same spot the old ceiling leak was in. That's a good thing because the hole was already there! We had never repaired that ceiling. You can call it superstition, or whatever, but every time (AND I DO MEAN EVERY) time we repair the ceiling, another leak springs forth. So, while my husband is choosing to freak out a little, I'm not. It's almost funny at this point. Almost. He did tell me that he is NOT fixing the ceiling...he wants to watch it, so we can catch it quick like we did last night. I told him I could deal with that.

On the up side, praise God we found it, and no damage was done to the piano underneath the leak! The piano is something my dad bought for my mom, and while there was water all over it, everything dried out really good, and there are no side effects of water being on it. It really could have been much, much worse. AND, it's not like the plumber had to come in and make this huge mess. There's already kind of a mess left over from the leak a few weeks ago. That's right...you hear me talking myself into this positivity. But, hey, whatever works, right?!?!

Onto bigger and better things: Jonah and Noah are sick. =( They may have to miss their first t~ball game. They have the coxsackie virus, which is also called hand foot and mouth disease. It starts off with high fever for a day or so, then the outbreak of the rash comes. It honestly looks like chicken pox. There's not really anything you can do for it, so you just have to suffer along with them. The rash is on their hands, feet, mouths, arms, and private area. It doesn't itch, so at least it's not bothering them. I say them...Noah doesn't have the rash yet, just the fever, but it'll come tomorrow, probably. Anyway, the bumps on Jonah multiplied yesterday, and he now looks like a diseased child. The only reason I'm NOT at the dr.'s office is because I've already spoken with his nurse, and she assured me the rash was normal. Just gross. I am praying no one else comes down with this. Collierville Elementary would freak out, for sure.

Well, I guess that's it for now. Not really anything fun and exciting going on, just crazy~ness, as usual. There is NEVER a dull moment in this household. Oh, and the stupid leak had to go and ruin the #2 episode of this season's Deadliest Catch. After we found it, it just wasn't the same. Ugh, the nerve.

Verse of the day:
Romans 12:12 Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble and keep on praying. (NLT)

Friday, April 18, 2008

Down to the last room

Well, I have made it through this week, only by the grace of God. I have been a hermit, and have stayed upstairs except for a few minutes in the morning, and an hour or so at night. It got easier once Drew went back to school, and Jonah and Noah went to Mimi's. That has been a huge help, in not having them here and not having to take care of them. (Thank you so much, Phyllis, I really appreciate you keeping them for me!)

They are almost finished!!! I did have a few moments of self pity this morning, and cried on my mom's shoulder (thanks for listening, and for letting me vent, Mom!), but after that I was better. Sometimes we just need our mommies. :) She has also been taking the kids to school for me in the mornings (again, thank you sooo much!), and 2 afternoons a friend picked them up. They rode bikes yesterday, so I didn't have to worry about getting them. Today my dad will be here to sit with them while I go pick them up. But after today, no more floor people!!! Even though I have come to really like the nice man doing the job, Kenny. He's pretty funny. Doesn't talk much, but has a good sense of humor. Anyway, they will finish the floor today and hopefully on Monday, the painter will be back to do touch ups and to paint and re~install the baseboards. I will never in my life be so excited to clean!!! I cannot wait to have my whole house clean at the same time!

Another piece of good news...for those that don't know, we've been trying to find homes for our guinea pigs, Caramel and Sunday. Graham and Drew really wanted these little things, and actually helped pay for them. But they made all sorts of promises how they would love them, and take great care of them, and all this other jazz. Do you think that happened? Are you kidding me? I was the one who usually handled all that. So, as if I don't have enough breathing beings to take care of, they were a real hassle. My dear and wonderful friend from church, Deb, has graciously agreed to take them off our hands! Thank goodness!!! I had to talk Todd out of driving them over there at 10p.m.! Not really, but he's excited, too! It's really hard to get rid of guinea pigs, did you know that? You can't run an ad in the paper, because people buy them as snake food!!! No matter how much I don't like the little things, I am NOT giving them to someone to use as dinner for their nasty snake. That is so sad. I will kinda miss them, and I'm hoping I don't cry. I get so stinkin' attached to animals, it's ridiculous. It's pretty bad when the boys are excited, but I'm a little sad. Oh well, I'll get over it. It's worth it not to have to take care of them anymore!

Alright, well, I'll go for now. Have a great weekend, and hopefully when you hear from me again, I'll be worker~free in my house!!!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Being Thankful

I am Thankful:

FOR THE WIFE WHO SAYS IT'S HOT DOGS TONIGHT, BECAUSE SHE IS HOME WITH ME, AND NOT OUT WITH SOMEONE ELSE.

FOR THE HUSBAND WHO IS ON THE SOFA BEING A COUCH POTATO, BECAUSE HE IS HOME WITH ME AND NOT OUT AT THE BARS.

FOR THE TEENAGER WHO IS COMPLAINING ABOUT DOING DISHES BECAUSE IT MEANS HE IS AT HOME, NOT ON THE STREETS.

FOR THE TAXES I PAY BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM EMPLOYED.

FOR THE MESS TO CLEAN AFTER A PARTY BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE BEEN SURROUNDED BY FRIENDS.

FOR THE CLOTHES THAT FIT A LITTLE TOO SNUG BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE ENOUGH TO EAT

FOR MY SHADOW THAT WATCHES ME WORK BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM OUT IN THE SUNSHINE

FOR A LAWN THAT NEEDS MOWING, WINDOWS THAT NEED CLEANING, AND GUTTERS THAT NEED FIXING BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE A HOME.

FOR ALL THE COMPLAINING I HEAR ABOUT THE GOVERNMENT BECAUSE IT MEANS WE HAVE FREEDOM OF SPEECH..

FOR THE PARKING SPOT I FIND AT THE FAR END OF THE PARKING LOT BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM CAPABLE OF WALKING AND I HAVE BEEN BLESSED WITH TRANSPORTATION.

FOR MY HUGE HEATING BILL BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM WARM.

FOR THE LADY BEHIND ME IN CHURCH WHO SINGS OFF KEY BECAUSE IT MEANS I CAN HEAR.

FOR THE PILE OF LAUNDRY AND IRONING BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE CLOTHES TO WEAR.

FOR WEARINESS AND ACHING MUSCLES AT THE END OF THE DAY BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE BEEN CAPABLE OF WORKING HARD.

FOR THE ALARM THAT GOES OFF IN THE EARLY MORNING HOURS BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM ALIVE.

AND FINALLY, FOR TOO MUCH E-MAIL BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE FRIENDS WHO ARE THINKING OF ME.


I didn't write this, I got it from a dear friend in an email and thought it was good enough to share. I would say we all have something to be thankful for, wouldn't you?

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Psalms

Psalm 130:1 Out of the depths I cry to you, o Lord; 2 O Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy. 3 If you, O Lord, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand? 4 But with you there is forgiveness; therefore you are feared. 5 I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope. 6 My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning. 7 O Israel, put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with him is full redemption. 8 He himself will redeem Israel from all their sins.

Psalm 132:7-9 7 "Let us go to his dwelling place; let us worship at His footstool-8 arise, O Lord, and come to your resting place, you and the ark of your might. 9 May your priests be clothed with righteousness; may your saints sing for joy."

Psalm 134:1 Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord who minister by night in the house of the Lord. 2 Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and praise the Lord. 3 May the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth, bless you from Zion.

I love Psalm 132: 7..."Let us go to his dwelling place, let us worship at His footstool-" His footstool is low to the ground, and once again, the only way up is down. On our knees, or on our faces, before our Abba Father. It's not about us, or our comfort. It's about Him, and us giving Him that honor He alone deserves.

The Job Description of Parents

PARENT
Job Description


POSITION :

Mom, Mommy, Mama, Ma
Dad, Daddy, Dada, Pa, Pop


JOB DESCRIPTION :


Long term, team players needed, for challenging
permanent work in an
often chaotic environment.
Candidates must possess excellent communication
and organizational skills and be willing to work
variable hours, which will include evenings and weekends
and frequent 24 hour shifts on call.
Some overnight travel required, including trips to
primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports
tournaments in far away cities!
Travel expenses not reimbursed.
Extensive courier duties also required.

RESPONSIBILITIES :


The rest of your life.
Must be willing to be hated, at least temporarily,
until someone needs $5.
Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly.
Also, must possess the physical stamina of a
pack mule
and be able to go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds flat
in case, this time, the screams from
the backyard are not someone just crying wolf.
Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges,
such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets
and stuck zippers.
Must screen phone calls, maintain calendars and
coordinate production of multiple homework projects.
Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings
for clients of all ages and mental outlooks.
Must be willing to be indispensable one minute,
an embarrassment the next.
Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a
half million cheap, plastic toys, and battery operated devices.
Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst.
Must assume final, complete accountability for
the quality of the end product.
Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and
janitorial work throughout the facility.

POSSIBILITY FOR ADVANCEMENT & PROMOT ION :


None.
Your job is to remain in the same position for years, without complaining,
constantly retraining and updating your skills,
so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you

PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE
:

None required unfortunately.
On- the -job training offered on a continually exhausting basis.

WAGES AND COMPENSATION
:

Get this! You pay them!
Offering frequent raises and bonuses.
A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because
of the assumption that college will help them
become financially independent.
When you die, you give them whatever is left.
The oddest thing about this reverse-salary scheme is that
you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.

BENEFITS
:

While no health or dental insurance, no pension,
no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and
no stock options are offered;
this job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth,
unconditional love, and free hugs and kisses for life if you play your cards right.

One room complete, two more to go

MY KITCHEN IS FINISHED!!!!!! It is beautiful! I will post a picture when all the extra little pieces of furniture get moved back to their original spots. I love my floor...it looks like a mixture of ceramic tile and brick, which is exactly the look I was going for!

Drew is feeling better, and today is his first day back to school in almost a week. I knew he was feeling better since he just about drove me nuts all day yesterday with his joking and crazy antics. So the older boys are at school, and Jonah and Noah are at Mimi's house. So what am I doing? Cleaning out closets!! I spent almost 3 hours in Jonah's and Noah's room and closet yesterday doing the toys, so today I'm tackling our closet, the linen closet, and Graham and Drew's closet. I desperately need to go through all their clothes! My neighbor had given me a lot of shorts and things for Graham and Drew, so once I'm finished with the closets, it's onto the laundry! I'm just happy my kitchen and laundry are all back in order.

I love productivity! It is so much easier when you don't have little ones running under your feet. However, it is eerily quiet without Jonah chatting my ears off. And Noah's sound effects. There is the lovely sound of the nail gun going off in the background, so at least I have something. Alright, enough from me, I'm off to finish my work!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Fine Dining

And what is this, you ask? This would be my precious children eating dinner on the table tonight. Yes, you read right. Eating on the table, not at the table, but on it. Well, the table is smack dab in the middle of my living room, and hey, we might as well watch some Disney channel while we're at it, and why not just go ahead and sit on the table? They didn't have anywhere else to sit, and all the chairs would not fit around it. So, hence the picture.

I'm heading to bed now, I cannot bear to look at my displaced house. Yes, I know it's temporary, but I don't want to look at it. And my hubby is getting some great laughs at my expense...he KNOWS I hate a dirty house. I was just sitting downstairs with him, and he turned around and looked behind him at the desk, and said, "Man, look at all that dust." I got up, and said goodnight. I don't want to look anymore. So the boys and me will just hang out up here all week. And have lots of carpet picnics. With peanut butter crackers and bananas like we did today...not too bad for fixing lunch in your living room, I might add. All that matters is that IT'S NOT PERMANENT...this is my new mantra for the week. Love to all, and goodnight!

The New Mess

O.k. well, I cannot believe I actually complained over what I thought was a mess last week, and the week before. That was not a mess. Today, now this is a mess. The kitchen floor is coming up easily, the baseboards are all popping right off, but the kitchen floor was wet underneath the particle board that was under the linoleum. SO, what does that mean, you ask? It means my kitchen will have to be in the shape it is now until it is dry. Praise God it's not a new leak. It was the leak we had over a year ago when the fridge leaked. And there is no mold, so another thank You, Jesus. He truly is watching out for us.

So, back to my mess. I don't know if we'll be eating what you would call a normal meal today. I can already say that tonight will definitely be a $5 pizza night. Lunch will probably consist of snacks, or maybe cheese and crackers, if I can get to the fridge. The man was nice enough to move it for me. So...any offers on dinner? Lunch? Ha ha ha, I have a friend or two I could call, and I know either would bring food in a flash if needed. But we'll manage. At least I have healthy snacks around, so we don't have to eat junk all day. I'd post a picture, but the mess honestly depresses me. I want no record of it once this is all finished. The kids are being great, by the way. Their eyes are huge, and Noah keeps on going to look at the torn apart kitchen, saying, "Whoa, Mom, you have GOT to come see this!" Then he asked the man, "Why are you doing that?" You gotta love kids and what comes out of their sweet little mouths. Remind me of that the next time one of them smarts off to me. More later.... =)

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Forevermore, by Travis Cottrell



I believe this was taken at a Beth Moore, Living Proof Live event this weekend. This man has got a tremendous voice, and this is one of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard in all my thirty~one years. It's called Forevermore, and it has one of my all time favorite verses from Psalm: "I will extol the Lord for all time!" What a way to praise our Father!

I also love all the pictures that are on this video. When I went to the Beth Moore conference in September, it was an awesome experience being in such a huge place, with so many women with ONE THING, OR PERSON, I should say on our minds: our gracious Heavenly Father. My friend, Diane that was with us said that at one time, she just stood and looked around. She was surrounded by thousands (25 thousand) of women on their feet or on their knees, eyes closed, hands raised in honor of our King. This video shows what it was like. I urge you, if you ever get the chance, go to one of her events! Travis is anointed, Beth and whoever else is with her, are anointed, it's the place to be if you want to be in God's presence...especially if you have to go away to do it. What a time of renewing! Alright, I'll stop gushing now. If you haven't already clicked on the video, please do so now. Love to all and goodnight.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

I've got sunshine on a cloudy day!

Every time I am around my friend, Sunny, I start humming this song. And now every time I am in my newly painted kitchen, I will start singing this song. The new color I picked out for the kitchen is called Lemon Poppy Seed. Very un~Jennifer. I really could not find anything else that I liked any better, and I figured I could use some more Sunshine in my life. So, now my kitchen screams SUNSHINE! It is VERY bright and VERY bold! I love it!! Well, I'm not very chatty tonight, and I just wanted to share the fact that I love the smell of freshly painted walls! Good night!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Update on the house stuff

Praise God I am seeing the light at the end of the long tunnel we've been down! The painter is coming tomorrow and the next day and he will be finished painting!!! Friday will be a break for Jonah, Noah and me...which means we can visit with Pappaw! Monday they're coming to tear up all the linoleum in the kitchen, to pull up the wood by the old, leaky back door we used to have, and to build up the floor they tore up last week. From what the man said, Tuesday they will lay down the new kitchen floor, Wednesday they will start in the living room, and from there finish the rest. Hopefully by Friday!!! I WILL BE SO GLAD TO HAVE MY HOUSE BACK IN ORDER!!!! Graham and Drew came home to a horrendous mess yesterday afternoon, and with eyes wide said they would be so glad to have a clean house again. I'd gone to the grocery store, and putting up the groceries consisted of putting the bags on the floor, with the stuff still in them, and putting the rest in our new pantry....which just so happens to be my kitchen table. I thought that was funny...it's even getting to them!

Oh, and once again, they made it home without being snatched. They said getting to school was hard, since it's mostly uphill, but coming back was a breeze and they were in my driveway at 4:06. They get out at 4:00, if that tells you the difference. I will be driving them tomorrow since they're predicting thunderstorms, but they'll be back to bike riders on Thursday. ;)

The Twins, The Mommy, And The Cop

Sounds like a comedy, doesn't it? It really wasn't, though. Yesterday was beautiful here, and it was already 65 degrees outside when I took the boys to school. Graham and Drew wanted to walk in. Let me explain for those who don't know what I mean. Graham and Drew live too close to school to be bus riders. I feel we live too far away to be bike readers or walkers by themselves. So what I do every afternoon is park on a road by the school, and let them be "walkers" out to my car. They like to be "walkers" in on pretty days, and yesterday was one of those days.

So I did my usual thing, and I sat in the car and watched them until they got to the school property. Well, the police officer STANDING RIGHT BEHIND ME did not like that idea. He told me that I was not allowed to do that because I was causing traffic problems. I informed him that since there was no sign saying not to, that I could do that if I so chose. He told me to use my common sense. I was mad, I admit. I feel like I always use my common sense, especially when it concerns my children. But then I told him (before he stopped being Mr. Nice Cop, and issued me a ticket for being belligerent) that I would abide by what he said and no longer do that. I did, however, still pick them up in that spot that afternoon. Hey, he didn't tell me not to.

Graham and Drew have been BEGGING me to let them ride their bikes to school. I noticed yesterday that there are about 10 kids in this neighborhood alone who ride the same path they would take. So I reluctantly agreed. They left me watching from the front porch at 8:30 this morning. I did really good (however I got NO SUPPORT WHATSOEVER FROM MY MOM IN LOVE!!!!!), and didn't begin to panic until 10 minutes after they'd left, thinking the worse. Right after the time Phyllis basically said, "You did NOT let them ride their bikes to school!" So I quickly threw on clothes, hopped in Todd's car and took off to the school. Much to the dismay of the infamous Ms. Gaines (the gym teacher who loves my kids), I rode by and noticed that, yes they did indeed make it to school without being kidnapped. Hey, you never know in today's world, right? I would have actually followed them, but they implored with me not to. So, as I drove by their bikes, Ms. Gaines had this huge smile on her face and was waving at me like, "Are you crazy, woman?!?!" Yes, in fact I am crazy. About my kids and their safety. And lots of other things, but that's not what I'm writing about.

So, will I let them do this tomorrow? Depends on the weather. I'm giving them room to grow...pray my mommy's heart will make it! :( Oh, and just teasing with ya, Phyllis. Thanks for putting up with my sarcasm and practical jokes...a.k.a. the plastic spider I threw on you and started screaming about. Remember that? I've never seen you move like that! Lots of love!

Monday, April 7, 2008

T-Ball practice

Jonah and Noah did great at t~ball practice! There is another Noah G on their team, and let me tell you, he is a handful. He doesn't listen very well, but his mom and dad corrected that by standing out there with him. The other kiddos did great!!! Their attention span SHOCKED me! Jonah and Noah were out there running bases like they'd been born to do that! They practiced batting, catching grounders (or whatever they're called when they roll on the field), and running bases. Like going to first base first and not third. They were precious! I wish I knew a team name to be able to tell you, but I don't. I'll keep you posted.

In the meantime, Drew called Sunny's house to ask her could they please bring Holly. As if they would leave her home alone. But him and Graham actually ended up helping the coaches. I think they even worked with the kids some. My babies are all growing up! They practiced while Sunny and I babysat kids on the playground. The man with the key came out and said there had to be an adult out there. So we volunteered. And made fun of the other moms. I AM JUST JOKING! We did not do that, I promise. Well, good night all, more tomorrow while I smell paint fumes all day!

Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father, I come to You today with a heart full of joy and gladness. I thank You for Your all consuming, unconditional love for us. Even when we don't deserve Your mercy, You bestow it. I thank You for the family You have blessed us with, and not just the ones related by blood. For all the family I have related to me through Your blood.

I ask that anyone that has discouragement in their hearts will be lightened as a result of this prayer. I ask that You come against any other fears, insecurities, or depression that there may be in my family. I pray that You will bring peace to those who need it, and comfort to those who need it. I pray Your blessings upon everyone that I know and love right now, in Your holy Name.

I thank You for the husband You have blessed me with. I thank You for Your obvious work in his life, and the man of God he's become. I pray that You will surround him at all times with Your love, and Your presence. I pray that You will guide him in every decision he has to make, about work and his future. Give him comfort over all that he does regarding our family, and help him to be all that You have planned for him to be. Give him wisdom as he fathers our children, as he trains these boys up in Your ways.

I thank You for my boys, Lord. What a blessing You have entrusted me with! I pray that I will not only be the wife to Todd that would please You, but the mother that You want me to be, as well. I pray that I will discipline these boys in a way that will please You, and in a way that is loving and gentle. I pray for each of them, and their future spouses, that these girls are raised in a Christ~centered home. I pray that these girls will know and experience Your love on a daily basis, and that they will grow up fearing You.

I thank You for my parents, all three sets of them, and the siblings you have blessed Todd and me with. I pray that You will protect their families, and their loved ones, and that You will keep them in Your loving arms. I pray that You will show them the plans You have for them, and help them to be patient as they await Your timing. You know all situations, Lord, and I am asking You to intervene in whatever they may be facing. I thank You for all the time and love our parents invest into our kids' lives. I pray that You will use them as loving examples of what Your love should look like...let Your Holy Spirit fill them and surround them at all times.

I love You, Lord, and I thank You that I have the freedom of praying to You, and being able to speak Your Name. I thank You for the privilege I have of being able to attend and be a part of a church like mine. For the family of believers that have become so dear to my heart. I thank You for the leadership of that church, and I pray that You will guide them in any decision making they have...especially in finding a pastor for our children's department. We know that You have another "Tim and Jenny" out there, that You want to come and lead our kids. I pray for the youth of our church, that they will be God fearing kids, focused only on serving You, not on what style of clothes everyone wears. I pray for the parents involved in youth, that they will allow You to work through them, and to be examples of You, and Your non~judgmental ways.

I love You, and I thank You, Father. Thank You for the many times You have carried me when I couldn't walk on my own. Thank You for keeping me in Your arms, at all times. Give me more faith in You and in Your provision over us. I pray that Your word will remain in my heart and that I will forever remain close to You, just like Your word promises. I love You, and I bless Your holy Name. Amen.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

What we've been up to

Well, all the weekend practices got rained out. Well, as Jonah pointed out, it wasn't actually raining outside. But the grass was swampy, so that justified it. We'll begin tomorrow night. Friday night found us with the same friends as usual, but this time it was hosted by the Riley's, much to the kids' excitement. I have a sweet picture of Graham holding baby Annabelle. She would not go to sleep...until Graham got her. Then she went right to sleep. Precious little thing. This time we played Kelly's version of dominoes. I have never played dominoes. I'm not much of a game kind of gal, but they're molding me into one. It was really fun, though, even though Todd said regular dominoes is better.

Saturday found us outside just about all day. Drew and his friend, Collin (who'd spent the night) rode their bikes to Collin's house and ended up staying there till almost 8:00 that night. Jonah and Noah rode bikes all day. And I sat. And watched. I was very lazy. I really wanted to be doing something to my house, but since it's torn up, what's the point? Todd and Graham went downtown with the men's group from church and fed the homeless. Graham made some new friends. They were playing basketball at a park, and Graham went over and played with them. They were giving him pointers on what to do. When that was over, he went over and played with some other kids on the playground. He really enjoyed it and is looking forward to doing it the next time. I'd actually like for all of us to go the next time. I love the thought of the boys being exposed to that, and realizing how blessed we are.

Saturday night we stayed home and watched the basketball games. Tonight we went to our neighbor's church and watched our neighbor, Travis perform. What we went to is called Kidz Central, and it's just music, skits, and a Bible lesson for kids of all ages. They all loved it, and I'm sure we'll go back the next time. This is something Central does once a month, and each month they have a different virtue. Tonight's was joy...even when things don't go our way. I wish our church did stuff like that...the kids crave it, and I feel for them!

We came home and ate dinner, then went back outside (I feel like I live out there!). We played a sophisticated version of catch...it's a ball with batteries and hand bands. The ball reads the bands and tells you where to throw it next. It's really fun...it was a present Jonah and Noah got, even though they don't catch that well. Then Todd, the boys and Kari from next door played hide and seek. I was base. That was scary, I admit, seeing my husband running full throttle towards me trying to "touch base" before Kari caught him.

We had an awesome weekend, and I hope you all did too. Oh, and Big Daddy, I'm glad you're feeling better. Are we on for dinner next Saturday night?!?! You've got some grandkids that are really wanting a ride on the tractor...if it's "awake" that is. Love to all!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Morning Devotion from Proverbs 31 Ministries

In light of all that has happened in my house this week, I have so much to be thankful for. I am thankful that God has protected us all from major illness. There is no reason, other than Him, why we weren't really sick. I am also thankful that my very watchful husband found the problem. It's good to know that he watches out for us and our home. This was the devotion I woke up to this morning, and I wanted to share it. This is an attitude we should all have. I know that I can definitely say that if this was the worst thing that happened to us this week, then it still a pretty good week.

Still a Pretty Good Day

Lysa TerKeurst

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts…”

Colossians 3:15 (NIV)

Devotion:

A couple of weeks ago, my daughter Ashley had a gymnastics meet that didn’t go so well. She fell on almost every event. She scored well below her expectations and I thought there would be lots of tears at the awards ceremony. But, much to my surprise, she bounced up to me and exclaimed, “Mom, did you see I landed my vault on my feet. That’s a good thing about today.”

She then flitted off with her teammates to get ice cream. One of the other moms grabbed my arm and complimented Ashley’s good attitude. Though I did feel sad for Ashley - after all she had worked so hard to prepare for this meet, my heart still swelled with joy. That compliment meant more than seeing my daughter with a neck full of gold medals. Do I want Ashley to win? Yes, of course. But seeing a good attitude displayed in the face of adversity - well that’s simply priceless.

Ashley’s outlook challenged me. How many times do I have something bad happen in my day and it just seems to turn my whole attitude south? Instead of just resigning myself to being emotional or sensitive, I’ve decided to see this as a call to action. I’ve started making the choice to say a simple statement that often diverts a bad attitude. And the statement is this, “If this is the worst thing that happens to me today, it’s still a pretty good day.”

Boy does this statement put things into perspective. I guess it’s an everyday way to do a little heart check up. The Bible tells us that we should intentionally make our minds think of things that are good, true, excellent, and praiseworthy. The more I think about things like these, the more my perspective seems to stay in check. In Colossians 3:15 we are instructed to, “Let the peace of Christ rule in our hearts… and be thankful.” Verse 16 goes on to say that we should also, “Let the word of God dwell in us richly…” Finally, verse 17 says, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus…”

Letting the peace of Christ rule in our hearts and letting the word of God dwell in us richly doesn’t just happen naturally. We have to intentionally make those choices. And we have to challenge ourselves to deal with the bad while focusing on all the good that is there as well.

So, what aggravation or disappointment are you facing today? If that’s the worst thing that happens - I bet you could say it’s still a pretty good day too.

Dear Lord, help me to put daily aggravations into proper perspective. Give me the wisdom to choose to let the peace of Christ rule in my heart. And give me a hunger to get into Your word and let Your word get into me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Related Resources:

The Bathtub is Overflowing but I Feel Drained by Lysa TerKeurst

P31 Woman magazine

Do You Know Him?

Application Steps:

Click over to Lysa’s Blog to post a comment about how you will choose to see the good rather than focus on the bad in your day today. Each time something aggravates you, make the choice to say, “If this is the worst thing that happens to me today, it’s still a pretty good day.”

Reflections:

Are there some areas that are consistently tripping up your attitude? Find some verses that you can memorize to help redirect your outlook when negativity starts to creep into your heart. Intentionally recall things you are thankful for and focus on praising God for those circumstances.

Power Verses:

Philippians 4: 4-5, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all…” (NIV)

Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” (NIV)

Colossians 3: 15-17, Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (NIV)

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

I AM FREEZING!

We have 2 fans and a humidifier going downstairs, and it's making it so cold down here!!! I am having a complete day of laziness, and am using Todd's laptop while sitting in the recliner. I figure I deserve a day of putting my feet up after yesterday. Maybe not, but it sure does feel good!!

I think the floor and wall may be dry enough for the work to start tomorrow. I just got a phone call from the contractor, explaining what all was about to take place. He told me that it will be a HUGE mess, but in 2 weeks, all will be complete. Fun, fun, fun! Not really, but we'll manage.

We're going to get out in a little bit, so Jonah and Noah can go see Andy. They were so good yesterday, in the midst of all that was going on, so I promised them they could see Andy today. And I could use some girlfriend time. Complete with coffee. It's raining here today, so between the rain and the fans, it will warm me up.

Jonah and Noah just ran up and asked me if they could have a brownie, but they don't know where they are, since our pantry is messed up!! I did manage to get most of the food back in there (I'm less one huge shelf), but I had to explain exactly where they are. They ran in there to get one, and stopped short when they saw the mess. They just about crashed into each other! They quickly turned around and went into the kitchen through the other way. They will not walk on the floor that's been pulled up. I think Todd told them not to, but they won't even do it when they have shoes on. Too funny.

I'm going to end with verses from Proverbs 27...

Proverbs 27:1 Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth. 2 Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; someone else, and not your own lips. 3 Stone is heavy and sand a burden, but provocation by a fool is heavier than both. 4 Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy? 5 Better is open rebuke than hidden love. 6 Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses. 7 He who is full loathes honey, but to the hungry even what is bitter tastes sweet. 8 Like a bird that strays from its nest is a man who strays from his home. 9 Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of one's friend springs from his earnest counsel. 10 Do not forsake your friend and the friend of your father, and do not go to your brother's house when disaster strikes you-better a neighbor nearby than a brother far away. 11 Be wise, my son, and bring joy to my heart; then I can answer anyone who treats me with contempt. 12 The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it. 13 Take the garment of one who puts up security for a stranger; hold it in pledge if he does it for a wayward woman. 14 If a man loudly blesses his neighbor early in the morning, it will taken as a curse. 15 A quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping on a rainy day; 16 restraining her is like restraining the wind of grasping oil with the hand. 17 As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.

That's one of my favorite passages...especially verse 17. Let us all sharpen whoever we come in contact with today, may it be a sister, a friend, or a co~worker. Love to all!

Friday Favorites

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