Christmas Time

Friday, March 23, 2007

starting to emerge....

so i am not lost and i have not quit blogging. i am still emerging from the never ending boxes that seem to be multiplying somewhere along the way between the old house and the new.

we are all enjoying a bit more space and though i LOVE hardwood floors (which we have not had since we sold our home in texas) i am finding that carpet has some perks too. carpet is so much more inviting when it comes to playing on the floor with the kids. ross was chasing the older two the other day (on his knees) and when he stood up there was a big nice carpet burn on his knee. he is on antibiotics because it got all nasty and swollen. "you take the good, you take the bad".

the kids absolutely enjoy their bunkbed and anna seems to enjoy not awaking in the middle of the night when her big sister is crying and turning on the lights.

on a decorating note.... i am not highly skilled at decorating our home. i am getting a bit better with time but all in all i am not some great mastermind. in our new house we have "niches". decorative niches. ahhhhhh. what to do? these things are huge. there are 4 of them and one has some need for a large vase or something because it has depth. the others are definitely for artwork. that's just a whole other issue. i know very little....let me correct that...i know nothing about art. i have been to one art auction on a cruise a few years ago and it was very interesting, but i did not purchase a thing because again the original issue is that i know nothing.

that being said, a friend today suggested i paint a large canvas myself with just some swishy stripy stuff. then i had a brilliant beyond brillant idea! i am going to let the kids paint a giant canvas for our home. i am going to pick the colors and i will let one dry before the next but how cool would that be to walk in and see the huge painting and folks say, "where did you get that fantastic painting?" i can say, "my little treasures did it". so that's the plan. i will take pics along the way so you can see what turns out. i am excited to let them at a canvas bigger than themselves! ( i will be waiting for a new michael's 40% off coupon so this "masterpiece" doesn't bowl me be patient for the pictures.)

till i emerge again!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

packing stinks....

for all you folks who have never packed up your home in the midst of small children, count your blessings! i have moved during college, i have moved 300 miles and i have even moved 1200 miles but let me tell you that trying to pack an entire house with a 5 and 2 year old on the move is pretty much like those folks who step on the gas pedal when stuck in a mudhole. you can't make any progress and you just sling dirt. movers are coming on thursday to move our big furniture and we will slowly move the rest over the next two weeks.

i head out on friday for a women's retreat in the white mountains where it is still in 60s during the day. i haven't figured out what clothes i am packing yet but i know what books i am bringing along. i am really looking forward to some time to be quiet...hence the word retreat. when most folks think of a retreat they think fun gettaway with the girls. i am hearing a soldier yelling "RETREAT". i am anticipating a time when i can have some good long "face time" with the Lord.

ross and the kids will have a fun filled weekend of hanging out and going to the new park. ross is an amazing dad who doesn't even shutter at the thought of me leaving for the weekend. it is such a blessing to know that i need not worry because he is fully capable of caring for the little ones in our home. he's awesome!

well, with all that is going to go on in the next 5 days i probably won't have the chance to blog but i will be back next week with highlights of our latest adventures!

Friday, March 9, 2007

fun pics from recent days...

this is daph and henry as we found them late one night. it's a good thing we are letting them share a room in the new house.

anna started eating cereal as well as some green veggies. she seems to be enjoying every bite (even if she too is sucking her thumb after each one)!
she is also rolling over these days...well we have yet to personally witness her in action but we are hearing her in the middle of her naps playing and when we go in there she has flipped over and is having a ball.

so this is just weird! whenever i chop an onion i put some in a ziploc and throw them in the freezer to use another day. well i was adding some bacon and onion to some green beans the other day and this is what happened. the onions were red onions that i had frozen and after they cooked they turned black. how weird is that!!

have a great weekend!

Sunday, March 4, 2007

march forth...

did you know that today's date is the only day of the calendar that is a command? march forth, move forward.

four years ago today our son oliver thomas was born. ollie was born at 27 weeks and had what is called non-immune hydrops fetalis. the chance of him surviving were very low but we clung to hope that somehow God would heal his little body. God did...just not in the way we had hoped. our little guy is in heaven and he is healthy.

sometimes we must trust God even when it doesn't make since. when we buried our son we had several options in how we chose to deal with his death. 1- we could go at life alone, relying on our own strength, trying to "do life" apart from God 2- we could blame God for our suffering and heartbreak or 3- we could trust the Lord's promise to ultimately prosper us and not harm us to give us a hope and a future.

we chose to trust Him. "when our circumstances force us to come to God, what we find is mystery- the majestic mystery of God's sovereignty, love and trustworthiness." (cynthia heald, what if God was right after all) even in the moments after ollie was pronounced dead the peace that passes all understanding was there. there was the deepest sadness and the greatest peace that resided in my heart at the exact same time. only God can do that.

today, ollie would have been four. wow, God has done a lot of work in me since that day. i praise Him for the way He has been at work in my life. He is a refining fire! i am so thankful that we got to be Oliver's mom and dad...what an honor and what a blessing.

our son's short life touched many people then and my prayer is that it will continue to do so. his grave marker says, "to God be the glory".

may today, ollie's birthday, bring you fame, oh God as we march forth!

Thursday, March 1, 2007

need more pics...

i am going to have to pull up some pics for this blog. i was just looking through and i haven't had any recent pics in a while. i will see what i can find for you and get something up this weekend!

children's pastor conference...

alright, so i said you'd find something new on this blog this's afternoon sound to you?

well let me just first say that if you have never been to san diego then you are totally missing out!! if it weren't ridiculously expensive to live there, we would move in a heartbeat. you can't beat the amazing weather and the beautiful beaches.

so here's what went down. five of us (plus anna and emmie) from our church flew out last saturday and landed in beautiful san diego where the weather was a cool 60 something...just right for capris, flip flops and a light jacket. after getting our stuff loaded in the rental van we went over to coronado island to a little restaurant overlooking the bay for lunch. i had a calamari sandwich that was fantastic and i can't wait for ross to go there with me. coronado island is picturesque. people rent suris and ride along the shore line with white sail boats on the water behind them!

after lunch we headed over to the hotel/conference center. the place was nice. we never left there again until time to fly home. though sad because there was no beach time, the conference proved to be a wonderful refreshing time!

i want to share some highlights from the sessions i attended:
  • worship is when we give to God. the only part of a church service that God gets anything out of is our worship. when there is a great sermon, He isn't sitting up there going "oh wow that's a great point, hadn't thought of that"- He is God- He thought of everything.
  • to teach our children how to worship we must live lives of worship, we must model it for them.
  • Psalm 8:2 says, "out of the mouths of babes; You have ordained praise." worship is not something we's who we ought to be. it is what we were created to do.
  • infants and toddlers are not too young to understand. when mary, pregnant with jesus, visited elizabeth, pregnant with john, elizabeth's baby lept in her womb. jacob & esau were at odds in the womb. babies can comprehend spiritual things and so when our hearts are worshipping God and we are rocking them or telling them a story they can learn.
  • we, as parents, are responsible for the spiritual health and growth of our children. are we who are in leadership in the church equipping families with the tools to help them raise spiritual champions?
  • family ministry begins with men's ministry. Psalm 78:1-8
  • be intentional in everything in our departments- books, puzzles, toys
  • we who are ministering to children can facilitate the laying of spiritual foundations in the children we serve.
  • if someone asks "where do you see yourself in 5 years?" our desire should simply be "wherever God wants me".
so those are just a few of the encouraging things that God showed me this past week. we heard some great speakers like latika garth, phil vischer (creator and voice of veggie tales) and the guys who stayed through monday night also heard max lucado.

the conference was a great time to refocus on the role i play in our church. what a blessing it was to be there and hear from the Lord.

Lord, i pray that you might reveal Yourself in a fresh way to the families that come into our nursery at catalina. i pray that i would be a worshiper not just a bystander. let the words of my mouth and meditations of my heart be pleasing to You. use me Lord, in the lives of the children and families i see each week.