Sunday, March 31, 2013

We serve a risen Savior...

After we got in from church this afternoon we let the dogs outside. It's been raining here off and on for two days so I expected their paws to be muddy when they came in. However, as Kamdyn opened the door I heard her yell, "Mama!!" in a tone that means certain chaos is about to break out. I know that tone she uses well, trust me! So as any good mother would do, I stopped what I was doing to see what she needed. As I got to the back door I realized Rocky, who by the way is known in our family as Brian's dog, had not just walked through mud but taken some sort of bath in the mud. Normally Kamdyn would take care of this problem but of all things she had just painted her fingernails and didn't want to mess them up. So, happy Easter to me in the form of a muddy dog!

I wrapped him up and took him into the bathroom, where I dropped him in a not so gentle way in the tub, fussing at him as if he knew exactly what I was saying. But as I sat there pouring the water over him I watched the mud fall off and be washed away. And honest to goodness in that moment I thought this is what Jesus does for me. I roll in the muddy selfish desires of this earthly body and I am messy and yucky but every time He wraps me up in the love that only He can give and washes me clean by the blood of the Lamb. He is gentle and patient, never fussing or condemning me to life in the dog house forever.

I dried Rocky off, making sure he was all clean, and then sent him on his way. I know he will find the mud again and we will have to scold him and wash him clean. But what a lesson I learned from him today and isn't that just how God works sometimes? In the unexpected and routine everyday parts of our life...

Today I am more thankful than ever that death has no victory over me because I serve a Savior that is ALIVE! The Lord of my life picks me up each time I fall and bathes me in mercy and grace every day. Praise the Lord!!


I wanted to include a couple of pictures from our day. This Easter our kids didn't match and Brian and I both pulled out some vintage clothing from our closet. But nobody fussed about taking pictures and I think that's because I had decided this would be a no-stress Easter.

Each of them chose their own outfit, which totally fits their personality!

And of the thirty something pictures I took, I feel like I need to share a few more with you....

This makes it easier for our family in Texas to see how tall the boys are growing. And, in Kamdyn's defense I have on some wedge shoes or else she and I would be about the same height.

And because I have shamed one dog today already, I have to include this picture of Kamdyn and her dog. It really is the best picture of the day!

So, Happy Easter to you all!! I hope each of you enjoy the day, celebrating the fact that we serve a risen Savior...

Friday, March 29, 2013

Catching Up...

You know the saying, "same song, different verse"? That's me!! My same song is that I had every intention of writing more this week and I truly mean that! But here is the different verse:

  • We wrapped up Spiritual Emphasis Week at school and here a few pictures of the kids and their friends:

 Brendan and Ellie dressed for Tacky Day! Brendan wore Brian's Hawaiian shirt and fishing hat!!
 Koby (on the left) is leading his class in a rap of Proverbs 3:5. He wasn't so much rapping out the song or beat but he was the closer of the rap by giving the scripture reference. The kids will forever remember, "trust in the Lord...."
 Kamdyn's class was not all there for this picture on tacky day and they really didn't go all out with the tackiness. She is in the back in the blue shirt and was not very tacky herself.

  •  Kamdyn played her first home softball game this week! They had a big win last week and then a big loss on the road Tuesday (but I skipped that game to go hear Condaleeza Rice speak!). She has really improved her hitting this season so far and has been happy about that!

Here she is ready to take a swing!
And she will hate that I posted this picture but I think it so good of her running back towards the dug out after a change of possession (or whatever you call it in softball when the teams trade off who is up to bat)
  • We finally found Kamdyn an Easter dress! I know to some of you that would not seem to be big news, but for me it is HUGE!!!!! In case you haven't taken a teen age girl shopping lately let me tell you the style is short, backless and typically see through. She has tried on lots of dresses and thankfully we found one today that she and I both loved. But no worries for Koby who has already got his Easter look ready!
  • I came across this post by one of my favorite Bible teachers on her blog and wanted to share it here just in case it speaks to anyone besides me. This is one of my favorite Bible verses and she does a great job just writing this from her heart. Read it if you have time!

  • Koby shared this song with me from You Tube and I wanted to share it here with ya'll. I know this music might not appeal to everyone, but just try to think about the words and how they reflect our relationship with God. The song is from the Passion 2013 event with Louie Giglio.

So, that's all I have for now with the usual same old promise that I'll be sharing more later. I pray each of you are celebrating the victory we have in Jesus as you walk through this weekend! Indeed there is power in the blood....


Monday, March 25, 2013

Fashion of the Decades...

This week is Spiritual Emphasis Week at our school, where our kids have academics in the morning followed by lunch, homeroom games, chapel and team building games every day. It is typically an amazing week for students and the staff and each year our kids look forward to it!

Each day the kids have a dress up theme and today was "Dress Up" day, meaning come dressed up in your best. Koby loves any excuse to wear a jacket and a tie so he was very excited about today! I thought I'd post a few pictures of our kids and some of their friends from the day...

This is Kamdyn and two of her best friends!

This is most of Koby's class! Of course he is front and center and had already taken off his coat and tie. The shades are not his and he also doesn't care that they are not his! He lives for pictures like this and the more fun the better. This is why he goes to school each day!

And this is some from Brendan's class that made up the Junior class team for volleyball after chapel. Ellie was proud to show off her muscles and they counted the day a success because they beat the Senior team!
So we are looking forward to what the rest of the week will bring! The kids always struggle to be sure they have just the right outfit for these dress up days. Which brings me to my point for writing tonight - tomorrow is decade day. The kids can pick any decade and dress up in an outfit which would represent that decade.
I want to say that it has only been recently that I have come to the realization that the '80s was not just twenty years ago! What I mean is, I think I am aging!!!
This was very evident tonight when the boys began to search Brian's closet for clothing they could wear that would represent the '80s! It isn't like we would just happen to still have a pair of parachute pants or some jams shorts stuffed in our closet. See some of you know what I am talking about because you owned these things as well. I really don't remember a lot of the fashion of the '80s but these kids today seemed to be enthralled with it.
And while '80s fashion trivia is not my strong suit, I can talk to you all day about what the '90s brought to the fashion world! 90210 anybody? Saved by the Bell? There were some trendsetters on those shows!
On a totally separate note -
Today Brendan and Ellie celebrated one year of being boyfriend and girlfriend. They don't count their brief time of taking a break over the summer and isn't that what you do when you are young and in love? Just see the good! Anyways, tonight they went out to dinner and her mother text this picture to me before they left and I thought I'd share it here with all of you.

Well I am off to watch our Fighting Texas Aggie women's basketball team!! I hope you are all well and warm wherever you are. I'll try to get some more pictures up tomorrow so you can see the kids in all their decade glory!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Trying Something New...

One of the reasons I have not written much lately has been because I have been having computer troubles. So today my sweet husband surprised me with a new lap top! And when I say surprised I mean surprised. I had NO idea!! Brian is a good practical joker and so sometimes it is hard for me to tell if something is real or not. I wasn't exactly sure if I would find a new lap top in the box or a picture of a new lap top.

Anyways, after supper tonight I have done nothing but sit on the couch and try to figure this new thing out. I am so amazed how different this system is than what I had on my other computer. Technology changes so quickly!! Not that I am Mrs. Technology, but I do know a thing or two about the computer . Need I say more than Windows 8? Which by the way is a far cry from whatever Windows 1-7 that I must have been using on my old computer. Apparently the people at Microsoft must just sit around and think of ways to confuse those of us who are creatures of habit. Basically, I figured out how to get on the internet and gave up on anything else.

And can I also tell you that our first day back at school was very eventful! As if the Monday after Spring Break wasn't enough on its own we spent an hour or so of the afternoon in the hallways as severe weather moved through our area. On top of that, we lost power. Welcome back to school! In addition to the excitement severe weather brings to students of all ages we are also having a late revival of the flu and achievement testing this week. Yes, I know you are envious of the good times we are having!

I wanted to post two pictures from our trip to Birmingham. We stayed at the Ross Bridge Resort again and the kids loved it! They were disappointed the water outside was too cold to swim but hello...it is mid-March so I am not sure what they were thinking! They did enjoy soaking in the hot tub after a long day (by which I mean a few hours) of shopping.

All of the kids were in need of some warmer weather clothing and Koby certainly took advantage of a shopping trip! He was quick to pick out an outfit and then change into it to get his Spring Break look on.

Here is out by the pool area at the hotel in his new "beach clothes". Since Koby was little he always loved to put on new clothes and at almost 16 that fascination is still there. He definitely was pulling off this summer look!

The other kids were not sure the weather was warm enough for shorts and a tshirt and here is a picture of them with Brian out on the balcony.

 I am amazed at how quickly they are growing! Koby is catching up with Brian and Brendan but it is hard to tell from this picture.

And speaking of trying new things... I sent the boys to get hair cuts after school today. This is one of the perks I have enjoyed about Brendan driving - he can do little things like this that make my life easier! After they got hair cuts they went by to see Brian at work and he later text me to see if I knew Brendan was getting his hair cut off? Well, no I didn't know that and again wondered if this would be one of those hilarious jokes on mom. However, Brendan did in fact get his hair cut shorter than it has been in almost four years!

Hello forehead! He told us later this evening he thought he better start getting used to shorter hair since he plans to be in the Air Force!! While I hadn't realized that decision had been made with 100% certainty I guess I understand the logic behind his decision and that pretty much describes the kind of person he is. He typically thinks things through before taking any kind of action! I am thankful God created him this way and am curious to ask the Creator why Koby is such the opposite extreme!!!

So around our house we are trying some new things this week. Thankfully the worst of weather went around us and we are adjusting to being back in school. Kamdyn's softball game did get rained out so she has her first game of the season this Thursday and the forecast is for lots of sunshine!!

I hope you are all having a great week!!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Coming and Going....

As I write this post, I realize that the timer will soon sound to end our Spring Break. By timer I mean the alarm clock! Our family has completely enjoyed the last ten days of staying up late and sleeping in. A huge thanks to whoever had the authority to coincide Spring Break with the time change because that couldn't have been more perfect!

We have enjoyed beautiful Spring Break weather most of this past week. I know I shared the picture of me and my flip flops and let me say my toes have been very thankful for the sunshine! As I cleaned out my closet this past week I was so happy to be putting the open toed shoes back within reach. I love the season of spring and watching the way God makes everything new!

We have been doing some home improvement projects over the last week. Brian and I decided to paint our bedroom over Spring Break so we started that on Monday. I was a bit apprehensive about doing this because our past track record of painting or putting things together or any other major project has not always been good. I just think people should be warned that these projects can and most likely will lead to some kind of argument or hurt feelings or a combination of the two. However, I am proud to say we sailed through this project of painting our room with ease - at least after we finally chose the color!

This led to other home improvement projects over the week and we honestly made a great team of taping, painting, brushing and rolling!! I'm so thankful we got to spend that time together!

The kids stayed busy through the week as well! Koby got in some time driving....

...and Kamdyn did her own painting project...

Let me say I am good to use a roller and paint a wall or use a paint brush to paint some baseboards but Kamdyn has a far better talent with paint!! She totally free handed this for our room and the picture here just doesn't do it justice. It is safe to say this talent did not come from her mother!!!

I also spent some time reading over Spring Break and I have been so excited about this book!!

My sister was so thoughtful and got me an autographed copy of "Sparkly Green Earrings" while she was at the .MOM conference a few weeks ago! I am forever thankful because I am a faithful follower of Melanie's blog. She is such an amazing writer and she is also an Aggie and Texan and lover of Mexican food so basically she and I could be best friends! Anyways, it's an easy and funny read about motherhood and you'll be very entertained if you pick up this book.

We also have eaten lots of food over Spring Break. I must confess I abandoned my diet (without every really intending to) by kicking off Spring Break with lunch at Mi Toro, our local Mexican food restaurant, the day we got out of school. From that point on, I think I forgot the fact that summer is fast approaching and more importantly so is swim suit season. Anyways, here is some of what we have been eating...

Brian loves crawfish!! I don't love them but I do love a shrimp po'boy at the place we go here in town to eat crawfish!! While we were in Birmingham, we ate at the Cajun Steamer, a local hole in the wall place that Brian and I found back in December. It is amazing!!! I enjoyed some shrimp fettuccine and a big slice of garlic bread (after we had fried pickles and crawfish - not together- for an appetizer). After our family stuffed our faces on seafood, we visited Edgar's Bakery, where we each picked out some cupcakes because if I'm going to splurge I am going all out!! Saturday night we grilled steaks and Koby likes to season up his own steak. I took a picture of all his seasonings and sent it on to daddy because he also shares a love for steak with Koby. Brian cooked them perfectly along with some cream cheese stuffed jalapenos wrapped in bacon, which is another new favorite of ours. (Sorry, I didn't take a picture of those but they really were amazing!)

I have also accepted that basically I am starting over and the 7 pounds I had lost I have now found. I have stocked up on salad for this week and am prepared to stay off the scales for a little bit longer!

So, this is just a sample of what we have been up to over here in our little neck of the woods. Spring Break was a great time to take a break from all the coming and going that our family seems to be constantly doing. I was so thankful for time at home, time with family and time with no set schedule!

Things will pick up this week with Kamdyn and softball. She has three games (but I did see rain in the forecast which is a bonus for the outdoor sports!). I have no doubt 5:30 a.m. Monday morning will be coming sooner than I'd like and we will be going back to work and school. I hope to be doing more blogging this week about our trip to Birmingham and some other things that have been going on around here so check back when you can! Have a great week!!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Spring Break 2013

I have no idea if anyone will read this! I realize I'm not the most faithful blogger and that I post with no rhyme or reason in timing. We finished up school last Thursday at noon and officially started spring break!! Praise. The. Lord!!

I had every intention of posting Thursday or Friday but then life happened. Some of you know what I mean!

The tires on the van needed to be fixed Friday morning at 8:00. Kamdyn had therapy and Johnny needed to be at the groomers. Oh and he also had to be picked up! Kamdyn had a friend over who had to be taken home and I had to make a quick trip the grocery store. This was my first day of spring break!

However my day was brightened by the sunshine....literally! I was so thankful for the warm weather God blessed us with and so this is how spring break started and I'll be updating the blog ASAP with all of the things we've been busy with!

Monday, March 4, 2013

DNOW 2013 - in the books...

I had every intention of posting Sunday afternoon but for some strange reason I don't do well with 11 hours of sleep in two days. I think it's something about aging but I am not sure!

Brian and I hosted 7 girls and a college leader this past weekend for DNOW (Disciple Now) at our church. We had a over 90 kids participate in all and we kicked it off Friday night...

I can't tell you how awesome it was to witness the way God moved in the lives of our youth through the weekend! The kids love staying up late, eating lots of junk food and playing crazy games but that is what draws them in. The purpose of the weekend is to disciple our kids now to impact the Kingdom of God forever.

I am so thankful for the group we hosted! These are some really special girls to me and I love them lots and lots!!

I joke about the little sleep I got but I love talking with them and hearing the ways God is moving in their lives. Statistics show that today's youth who have at least 7 adults to invest in their life stay faithful to the church and to their faith once they graduate. I remember the people who impacted me in a positive way while I was in the youth and I am forever grateful that they took the time to love me, encourage me and especially pray for me!

Here are a few more pictures from our weekend -

This is Brendan and Ellie with some friends of theirs as DNOW was kicking off Friday night.

The kids all bring a 2 liter drink and a snack with them to their host home and my girls loaded up on the oreos! We even had a package of the all new controversial mega stuff oreos. Our boys were glad to see a few still in the package when they got home Sunday afternoon.

Sunday morning I needed TWO cups of coffee to make it!! So, this was my coffee of choice for my Keurig. I love this stuff!!!!!

This is a video of Kamdyn playing in a game Friday night. First of all, let me say I would never have done something like this and I always admired people who could. The game this night was to see who could eat a cupcake with no hands. And as a bonus, our youth pastor sprinkled the top of the cupcake with some Louisiana Hot Sauce! Kamdyn didn't win but she did come in close.
And finally, the theme for the weekend was "Abandon". The kids heard messages centered on abandoning the things that are weighing them down and they were encouraged to remember you can't have the things of this world and God. You must choose what to abandon! This is the wall the kids wrote all over during the weekend. I loved seeing what they wrote and it's powerful to me to see names of kids I know and love so much signed on to the wall....
The weekend was such a blessing to me and my simple words here can't begin to show how I was impacted. I've rested up and counting down the days until Spring Break!! I still have laundry to catch up on and floors to mop so I'll be busy around here a little longer! Hope you are soaking up God's sunshine wherever you are!!!!