Thursday, December 30, 2010

Conversations with my Dad

Sounds like a book, doesn't it?  Hmmm...maybe that's what I could write about!  Anyway...

Him and my step mom are going to Hot Springs tomorrow, so we had our daddy/daughter day today.  :))  The kids chose to eat at Backyard Burger...all because of the playset.  Fine by me...I am in love with their blackened chicken sandwich.  We left there (because of all the teeny kids) and went to our school's playground.  Where they rode bikes and kicked the soccer ball around for the better part of an hour and a half. 

Then we came back to my house and I made us a pot of coffee.  And we talked.  As usual, but I thought I'd give you a glimpse into my living room walls, and hear some of our many subjects.  If this bores you...then come back another day. 

One of my favorite quotes of the day:  "They don't ask us our opinions.  If they did, we could really tell them how to run our country."  I won't go further than that.  :) 

We also talked about:

Simplicity...and the longing for a quieter, simpler life. 

The old days...how Grandma Lloyd used to let Daddy run crazy all over the city.  He told me him and his buddies used to ride their bikes through the storm drains, and how they would ride from their house all the way to the airport!  He also used to ride his bike along Nonconnah creek. 

How tired we are of politics as usual.

Jesus...and how amazing Heaven is going to be.

Family life...the differences between the yesterday and today. 

Alaska...and how when my parents go on to Heaven, I will end up living there someday.  :)

Starbucks...and how we think our coffee is much better than the junk they charge $5 a cup for.

Genealogy...the Lloyd's are from Wales, England.  There is also Indian mixed in somewhere, but I don't know what kind.

How getting old stinks because your memory just isn't what it used to be!

Long johns...God bless his little heart.

Retirement...he is over it.  :)

How huge our God is...the same God that spoke the world into existence wants us to cast all our cares on Him. 

Childlike faith...to the world, redemption is hard to understand.  But to Christians, it's the simplest thing ever.  Ask...repent...believe...and it will be given to you. 

High definition tv...how amazing it is. 

Food....lots and lots of food talk.  Especially while we were on the way to Backyard Burger!!

Patriotism...in light of our friend's son being killed in Afghanistan, we should all be so grateful to what these soldiers do for our freedom. 

Liberal press...how they only let you hear what they want you to hear, instead of all the positive.

I'll stop here, although the list goes on!  I cherish these moments I get with my Daddy, and the history lessons that he gives my kids.  These are the things I want my kids to remember...simple moments like today. 

Love to all. 

ummmm???

I hate titles.  So there is none today.

I am exhausted from yesterday.  Another sign that I am aging.  :(  I went to bed tired, and my legs are screaming from all the up and down motions I did yesterday while cleaning the upstairs.  I am very thankful that I have 4 very willing sets of hands to pitch in and help.  We were upstairs cleaning, going through, rearranging and organizing closets yesterday...Graham's and Drew's, Jonah's and Noah's, and the dreaded playroom.

Don't you like how I do things in pairs?

We stopped once for junk food lunch, and once again to watch Percy Jackson.  Because the sugar set in and I needed a little nap.  I was really frustrated at one point over the fact that there was just so much junk all around me...but we pulled through and got it all finished.  Needless to say, after a day like that, we most definitely piled into the 'burban and bought 3 pizzas for dinner.

Todd worked for the sheriff's department last night, so we ate and watched Karate Kid.  I love that movie.  Then I played on the computer, then we all went upstairs.  I'm about a quarter of the way through the Sarah Palin book that I'm reading, Going Rogue (yes, I'm slow and just now reading her first one).  I lurve it.  I didn't think I would be able to get into it, because politics bore me (just don't tell my husband that), but quite the opposite has happened...I'm fascinated.  I love her and am fascinated with her life, her family, and just the way she handles life in general.  She pretty much does not care what people think of her...which is how I want to be.  Anyway...that's a whole other blog post.  Anyway, I read for a little while, then crashed and don't remember a thing.   

Well, all my kids just woke up and I owe my mom a phone call.  Love to all!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Just a Moment...

If you aren't feeling thankful enough, I suggest you go here.  You can read all about a girl who would love to complain about her messy house, her lazy husband, her kids that are driving her nuts...but can't, because her husband was killed in the line of duty.  And I am speaking to myself, too.  I think we all go through moments of frustration, we would be abnormal if we didn't.  But...before we voice that complaint, go read her story.

I think we've all heard something similar to this before, but it's worth reading again.

For the frustrated wife who is waiting on her husband, who is coming home late again...say a prayer of thankfulness that he's coming home at all.

For the tired mom who picks up the kids' toys again...say a prayer of thankfulness that you have kids who are healthy and active.

For the woman who wishes for the hundredth time that she was just a little bit thinner...thank God for the food you have in your home.  Because kids in our country are going to bed hungry tonight. 

For the family members you have that annoy the daylights out of you...thank God that you have family to be thankful for.  It's true we can't choose our family, but they are the only one we get.  Don't waste your time getting mad over stupid stuff.

Remember to treat your family members as nicely as you treat strangers...did you know we're more friendly with other people than we are our own family members???

Remember to apologize when the need arises.  I've seen way too many untimely deaths in the past 2 months.  We never know when our last breath on this earth will be breathed.  If you've wronged someone...than say you're sorry while you have time left to say it.

Remember to tell your family often that you love them and that you're proud of them.  One thing I want my kids to remember when they grow up is how free I was with those words.  We should spend our time praising them and building them up...not tearing them down.

Remember what's important in life...it's not our clothes, our cars, or our homes...it's the way we lived our life when no one was watching. 

Remember that nothing in this world was an accident...the Author and the Perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:2) had us on His mind when all of creation began.  Thank Him for it. 

If this offends you...then don't read it.  If it moves you...then share it.  Do you dare?

Love to all. 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Magic of Christmas...

I came across this entry from two years ago and thought I would re-post it.  Hope you enjoy.  

Why Christmas Is Magical To Me

1. The birth of Jesus. Santa Claus totally aside, Jesus' birth is the most magical, special, thrilling thing ever to have taken place. That God chose Mary, who said "Lord, let it be unto me as You have said", who was betrothed to Joseph (not many men would have stood by her side), to be the parents of Jesus Christ. How much more humble can it get? God knew what He was doing all those years ago, and it still rings true today. Whether this Christmas is the best or the worst, God has a plan in it all, it's just up to us to step aside and trust Him. I love the image in my mind of what it must have been like to see that bright star suddenly light up and fill the whole sky. It makes me wonder: do I have the Lord in such a place that He fills all of me?


2. Our church family and the body of believers who are our family and friends. This is what God intended; for us to belong to a body of believers with whom we could fellowship. In so many ways, the church is as much our family as our real family is. The church being all it's people, not the building itself. There is something so incredibly special about belonging to a church for years at a time. I love the saying, 'You will never find that perfect church. If you do, you'll mess it up by going to it.' It's so true. 

Our church is amazing, but trust me, there are faults to be found. None of that matters, though. We believe what our church teaches, it's Bible based, and we know that denomination doesn't matter...as long as we have asked Jesus to be in our hearts, believe in Him, and confessed and asked forgiveness of our sin...that we will all reside in Heaven someday together! 

These people within our church know every little nook and cranny of our lives. We are not private people. We lay it all out right there, for everyone to see and to be a part of. We're emotional, loving, feeling, sharing people, Todd and I, and there's something so freeing about people knowing all these little details about our lives and STILL loving us. It's amazing. And if you're reading this, and you don't have that in your life, I encourage you to either get more involved and SERVE TOGETHER with your church, or just come to church for the first time. If you don't have one, come to ours. I'll even skip choir and come sit beside you. Wherever you go, I just pray that you find 'your spot'. We all have one.

3. The kids! I am totally reliving my childhood through my boys and I love it. My heart was racing this morning as I dropped them off for their LAST DAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS BREAK!!! I may seriously be more excited than them!!! Not really, but they were all looking at me like, "Mom, chill." I think I embarrassed them. I love all our little quirky traditions. For us, this whole month is all about FAMILY and doing all we can with them. It starts the day of Thanksgiving, and goes right up until the night before they return to school. We go to the grands' houses (hopefully more than once before the BIG DAY), we go to Zoo Lights, the parade, the town Christmas tree lighting, we always to go some sort of Christmas village for them to participate in, we drive around and find our favorite Christmas lights, the list is endless. These years are precious that we have while our children are little, and before we know it the day will come when they don't want to do this kind of stuff anymore. I am dreading those days, but Todd and I will probably continue right along. Hopefully they'll just want to add their friends/girlfriends to the mix. The more the merrier is my life's motto.

4. CHRISTMAS MUSIC! I haven't listened to it that much this year. But I have a song in my head at all times. I think my favorite is O Holy Night. It holds a close tie with Little Drummer Boy. Just precious, I tell you. I am constantly singing or humming one of these beautiful songs. Also, and this kind of goes along with the music, I love Christmas movies! I've recorded like ten so far, and am trying to watch them all before Christmas! Drew and I watched a couple yesterday when he was home sick. I love the Family channel and the Hallmark channel. The family channel has the 25 days of Christmas, which is just amazing! Thank the Lord for digital video recorders!!! I don't know what we ever did without it! Even Todd watches them with me...if I twist his arm hard enough!

Well, I am out of time. I could add more, but I'll leave you hanging. Happy FRIDAY!!!! And love to all!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

I'm Dreaming...

...of a White Christmas!  We might actually get one this year...and the white stuff, not just the yucky ice!  I would absolutely love that!  I don't think I've had one.  Have you?  They are not at all common in Memphis, TN. 

We had a wonderful day today.  We celebrated Christmas with Todd's family.  I love that we have a whole day to enjoy with them...and not just little bits and pieces like we used to.  We do Christmas early with them, we do Christmas eve with my dad, then Christmas day with my mom and sisters.  It works great for everyone...and gives us good, quality time with each part of the family.  My mom is always sweet and invites Phyllis and Wiley to eat with us over at their house, which I love.  I can't stand the thought of someone being alone on Christmas day.  However, I was warned that if it does indeed snow, they will be spending their day at home by their fire.  Can't say I blame them. 

We're having a wonderful Christmas break so far.  Monday I baked, Tuesday I spent with my mom, and today was all of the Goodwin's.  Tonight Drew has a friend spending the night...a new friend, who is in his class this year.  His name is Luke.  :)  He's one of those really nice boys~the kind that's nice to the younger siblings, as well.  I love that. 

Tomorrow my sweet Daddy is coming to spend the afternoon with us.  I called him and invited him over sometime yesterday.  Because we LOVE spending time together.  Especially when we're not in any hurry.  I really want to go see Narnia...I absolutely love those movies, but I doubt we'll do that.  It costs too much!!!  Maybe next week, though.  :) 

Anyway...it's been a perfect day.  I love these kinds of days...when my kids make me proud, when one moment just blends into the next wonderful moment.  It was perfect.  Well...I'm about to hit the sack.  After I read some of my Christmas book, that is.  Goodnight...and love to all.  And, Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Slowing Down...

Sometimes it's nice to do that.  So often we get caught up in the frenzy that is called 'life', that it seems abnormal to just sit...and relax. 

But we need to do that more often, don't we?  For instance, my sister Lisa lives three miles from me, and I hardly ever see her.  Because she's constantly running around and working, and because I...well, maybe because of all my kids.  Who knows?  Anyway, I haven't had just her and her family over in just about sweet forever (aside from Halloween, and that doesn't count b/c it's so busy), so I invited them all over tonight.  The only ones able to come were her, Erika and Jaret.  Tyler was at a friend's house and Jim had a late meeting.  We ate dinner, and I left the dishes everywhere and we just settled down to relax.  To talk.  We never get that chance.

It's sad that we're so close, but we're also so far away it seems.  Tonight was wonderful because by her coming to my house, she was able to escape for a little while.  Meaning we actually had a great conversation without the constant interruptions that our day brings.  It was heavenly.  My sweet nephew, Jaret, played on our piano and the boys talked KK into going upstairs to play the wii.  Lisa and I sat and just caught up. 

I guess what I'm saying is this: we all need to take some time to smell the roses.  We all need to schedule moments like this in our lives.  Whether it be with family members, with friends...whoever.  It's important to have a life outside of your immediate family.  I'm blessed with some amazing, Godly friends in my life, but I also pray that I never take for granted my sisters.  And, too often, I do.  I think that occasionally, these little impromptu times of being together can be scheduled.  Don't you?

Life is too short to waste opportunities that God gives us.  Whether it's a phone call that needs to be made or a personal, face to face meeting...whatever it may be....use your time wisely.  Who knows when a day might be our very last? 

What's On My Agenday For the Day

Cooking!!!  One of my dearest friends, Marcia, is coming over this morning and we are going to start our cooking frenzy!  I'm excited.  We treated ourselves to dinner out at an actual restaurant last night~Chili's, thanks to a little girl who gave me a gift card for carpooling~and after dinner, Graham, Drew and I went to Kroger to get all our ingredients. 

I'm making chex mix (a given, because all my kids LURVE it!), rice krispie treats, and chocolate covered peanut butter crackers.  I think Marcia is making sausage balls and puppy chow.  Then we will share the goodies.  :))  We did this for 4 hours last year and it was so much fun. 

I love this girl that God has gifted me with.  She has been such a blessing to me and has become one of the best friends I have ever had.  She is the kind of girl who will laugh with you over crazy things, cry because plans might change and it makes her sad, and she will tell you like it is.  In a loving and kind way.  I love her. 

After our cooking frenzy, I might be going to my mom's for a little bit, and then she is coming back home with me to spend the night!!  I can't wait.  Todd is working with the sheriff's department tonight and I will be thrilled to have company.  :)  We're having roast beast for dinner (and no, that is not a type-o) and we're going to watch Christmas movies!!!  I can hardly wait.  I love my mama...and am thankful for every single second that God blesses me with her! 

Well...I need to go get dressed to start my day.  All the doodlebops are still snoozing upstairs, so I'm going to go take advantage of the calm before the storm.  Have a blessed day...love to all!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Happy Sunday!

I can't wait to get today started!  I love attending our church.  It feels like home when I walk through the doors.  I also love worship.  It's one of my very favorite things, and it's such an honor to get lift up an offering of praise to my Savior!  Add to the fact that we get to sing Christmas songs (O Come Let Us Adore Him), and I am in Heaven. 

We are taking it easy around here today.  I think the temps are going to warm up enough so the kids can play outside without freezing.  And I am going to prepare for tomorrow to cook with my sweet friend Marcia!  I love this day.  It's so much more fun baking with a girlfriend than doing it alone.  Then tomorrow night my sweet Mom is spending the night with me.  We're going to watch Christmas movies.  :) 

We might spread some more Christmas cheer in our front yard.  Todd's hands were freezing last night, so we called it quits.  Well, everyone is up and moving, so I guess I need to get up and do the same. 

I encourage you all to find a church to attend today!  It's almost Christmas...what better time to honor our Lord?  Have a blessed day.  Love to all. 

Saturday, December 18, 2010

another "thoughts rambling around in my brain" post

It was my birthday on Tuesday.  I turned 34.  Do I feel 34?  Heck no.  But when kids call me "ma'am", then I suppose I do feel that old. 

I had a great birthday with my family...and some of my favorite gifts were of the homemade variety. 

I got some sweet little goodies from friends at school.  To name a few: a little girl brought me homemade puppy chow, I got a new bottle of OPI...Extravaganza from the new Burlesque line, some cool socks and a Yankee candle.  Yummy. 

I got a bajillion hugs from sweet little friends at school all week.  And I was told repeatedly: "Mrs. Goodwin, you are the best and nicest cafeteria lady EVER."  There is nothing on earth like a kid making you feel like a rock star.  ;)

I spent quality time with my parents this week.  And my in-loves.  AND I even got a date night with my main man.  Thank you, Phyllis and Wiley.  I love you...even more than I did before that great night. 

Graham had a band concert on Tuesday night and I got all misty-eyed over the sight of my oldest son all dressed up in dress pants, shirt and tie.  He is truly growing up, and while the thought of that makes me a little sad...I'm also very proud of the young man he is becoming.

The movie Shrek NEVER gets old.  I love that Jonah and Noah are watching it for the first time. 

I love the fact that tonight while we were at my Mom's having dinner, Big Daddy randomly put on a scary mask, and then went outside to scare the boys.  It worked.  :)

I also love the fact that even though it was 9:30 when we got home tonight, we all stayed outside and put up some Christmas cheer in our front yard.  :)

I think I'm addicted to these:  :)

My kids are about to go to bed...and I think I am, too. 

Oh and one more...can you believe I accidentally bought DECAF coffee the last time I bought coffee?!?!?!  I can't.  Ugh.

Love to all.   

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

hmmmm.....

I am guilty of letting the Christmas crazy catch up with me.  I've had a gazillion things going on and I am finally able to sit back and take a deep breath.  Or so it seems. 

I was praying this morning and was prompted to just sit and soak in the Christmas story.  The birth of Jesus and John foretold, and then the story of their births.  And I am simply just in awe of the God I serve. 

I love so many things about all this...and it's all found in Luke, by the way.  I read chapters one and two this morning, if you want to find them for yourself.  I was also using my (brand new, thank you Phyllis and Wiley!!!) little NIV Bible.  I even pulled out my highlighter.  :)  I know.  I'm a nerd. 

Anyway.  A couple things strike me as funny.  One, whenever the Angel Gabriel appears in the Bible, whoever he is appearing to is stunned and terrified.  His first words are always, "Do not be afraid."  I wonder what in the world he must have looked like?!  I think it's interesting.  I would imagine that they were stunned at his brilliance.  When I picture him in my head, I picture a beautiful specimen of a man with a glow all around him.  I mean, come on.  He is the ANGEL OF THE LORD.  He had to have been breathtaking.  Literally.  Lol. 

Anyway, another thing that touched my heart this morning was the part where the Bible tells of Zechariah being visited by the angel.  {Just a little side note here...Zechariah was married to Elizabeth, who was Mary's cousin.  She's the one Mary visited while she was pregnant with Jesus.  When Mary spoke to Elizabeth, the baby within Elizabeth's womb leaped.  That baby was John  the Baptist.}  Zechariah was doubtful of what Gabriel was telling him.  As a result of that doubt, the angel said these words:

"I am Gabriel.  I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news.  And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their proper time."  (Luke 1:19 and 20)

And Zechariah did not speak again until his son, John, was born.  But here's the part that gets me.  Do you want to know what the first words out his mouth were?!?!  Well, just keep reading and find out for yourself.


"Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue was loosed, and he began to speak, praising God."  Luke 1:64

What prompted his mouth being opened and his tongue being loosed was his telling of the people that his newborn son was going to be called John.  He'd been doubtful of having a son because him and his wife, Elizabeth, were well along in years.  And his family was wondering why on earth he was naming his son John, when there was no John in their family.  By his proclaiming his son's name proudly, all this above verse happened. 

But his first words were praising God.  Hmmmm.  I think there's a lesson to be learned in that.  I've had to keep my mouth closed plenty of times to prevent hateful words from flying out.  Have you?  I know I can't possibly be the only one!  I think this requires some thinking on my part.  I need to give my Heavenly Father praise more.  I need to praise Him more than saying (and thinking) things that are not beneficial to His kingdom. 

This all just struck a chord with me this morning, and I'm thinking it was probably the very reason I was prompted to read this Scripture.  I've been slacking off in this area, and while I have read this part many times, I don't recall these particular words striking me the way they did this morning. 

I'm preaching to myself, here.  However....if this strikes a chord with you as well, pray about it.  God allows us to accomplish things in His strength, not ours.  Life is never going to be perfect and problem-free.  However, we can control things going on by the way we respond to these trials.  By responding in love, we show the world that some things in life are just not important...and some things in life ARE important...like us acting out in love the way the Lord commands.   Because that is His greatest commandment.  And by doing this...we are glorifying our Savior. 

Love to all. 

Friday, December 3, 2010

ramblings

Even though you all know how bad I hate Thursdays...yesterday was a fun one.  I was able to take off work and go with Drew on his Apex field trip.  We went to Germantown High School to see a play call The Farnsworth Invention.  It actually ran very late, and because of that, I just took the whole day off. 

Which I never do.  When I go on field trips, I always get back early and finish out what would be a regular day.  But not yesterday.  And I enjoyed every minute of it.  I had time to go spend in my favorite place-the library.  I got oodles of Christmas books to keep my mind nice and focused on Christmas and what it's all about. 

Yesterday afternoon after I picked up all the boys and dispensed some back to their proper owners, the boys and I met Todd over at his parents' house.  They fed us dinner as a bribe so we would help them put their tree up.  It was a nice arrangement for all involved...I didn't have to cook and their tree got up four times as fast!  Lots of little helping hands make a huge difference in the amount of time if takes to put a tree up, I am telling you!!

We left their house and were heading home when Jonah asked from the backseat, "Mom?  Can we go see Aunt Debi?"  He and Noah had not seen her yet.  So I called to make sure it was okay if we stopped by and we stayed there for about a half hour.  Until Jonah was about to fall asleep on Debi's lap.  He LOVES her.  They are a cute little pair.  It makes me even more sad that we don't get to see her that often. 

So, here we are at Friday!!  My favorite week day!  We have plans to attend The Ville's Christmas parade tonight.  I cannot wait!!!  I think I'm going to make something yummy and warm to eat for dinner and then we're going to head that way to get our spots reserved.  Fun times!!!  I love the Christmas parade!!  I absolutely adore this time of year.  I love all our little traditions.  It's going to be a fabulous weekend and very busy next week.  That's the week before The Christmas Window at church and I'm going to be there almost every night for 8 nights straight. 

But I'm excited.  I'm also on countdown mode until the last week of school.  :)  Imagine that. 

Well, I hope you all have a blessed day.  Love to all. 

Thursday, December 2, 2010

a prayer request

This has been a rough past few weeks.  My friend Sharon lost 2 of her sons in a plane crash.  Their memorial is this Saturday at Collierville United Methodist Church.

My niece is in the hospital and needs prayer.

And an old friend of our family, Tami, lost her son in Afghanistan.  I've spent the last hour reading his wife's blog and crying my eyes out.  They were so young and in love, and she was such an amazing wife to him.  Her writing is very inspiring.  If you want to check it out, click here

What in the world is up???  I'm thankful we have a faithful God to look to in times like these.  I cannot imagine life without praying friends, which is why I'm asking you all to pray. 

The hero that died is Chad Wade.  He leaves behind his wife, Katie, his mom, Tami, and a slew of family members that loved him dearly. 

Thanks for joining me in prayer.  My heart is broken for this sweet family. 

Love to all. 

things that make me happy

Yesterday's post was long and detailed.  Today's will be short and sweet.  Here are some random things I've loved this week. I...