Friday, December 26, 2008

your a strange one, mr grinch...

Okay! I am back among the living.

My first head/chest cold in years decided to make an appearance.

I am thankfully able to lift my head off of my pillow!

So, almost a week later...

Saturday morning I loaded up the girls and a suitcase for surprise road trip, to Nashville, Tennessee, to meet up with my dearest friend and her family {the Alabamians--as Michaela used to call them}.

We stayed at the Opry Hotel, went to the mall, and experienced ICE~~~Grinch style.
~~~All of the figures are made from ice.
Let me tell you,
IT. WAS. COLD!!!!

Sunday led to a surprise for me...

We attended a congregation that my friends had visited before.

My friends went on ahead...because I told them I have Nigel (our GPS system). He would lead us!

Except Nigel decided to lock up that morning.

The girls and I were late.

We sat down in the very back. The Lord Supper was beginning. As I look up, I see Woody McGee standing up at the Lord's Supper table!!!

We attended the same congregation in Northern Kentucky. We had not seen each other in 4 years!!!! What a nice surprise.

I have seen NO ONE I know in the area I live in, but I drive 4 hours away and run into 4 people I know!!!!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

merry christmas

Christmas Eve ended with Santa ringing the doorbell and leaving Christmas pajamas on the porch for the girls.
The girls put on their pajamas, set out the cookies and milk, and headed to bed. E wanted M to sleep in her room with her so they both headed upstairs to bed. M began talking about waking up to the stockings being in the bedroom. E got a panicked look on her face and pleaded with me to make sure Santa did not come into her room. I assured her I would write him a note and tell him to leave the stockings in the living room. I wasn't sure why she was so apprehensive about the idea of him coming in, but as I left I heard her telling M that she was afraid he would trip on the things on her floor {the cards she had been playing with earlier}.

The morning began at around 9:00am when E came running in saying it was time to go see if Santa had come!!!! And of course he had!
One of M's favorite gift--one of her two Vera Bradley bags
Steve enjoyed sitting on my gift--my 6 dining chairs. Per E's request, they had been 'under the tree' for almost 2 weeks. But I NEVER saw them!!
I hope everyone had a day of joy and love.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

twas the night before Christmas...

and visions of sugar plums danced in their heads!
It doesn't get any sweeter than this!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

breaking news...

E's greatest wish for Kindergarten has begun to come true!!!

She is about to lose her first tooth.

And I sure wish I knew when Kodak Nikon moments were going to occur so I could have a camera handy--because her excitement and reaction were priceless

She came up from the 'dungeon', i.e basement, and told me her tooth hurt.

I looked at where she was pointing-assuming I would find a cavity {because I thought the top teeth were the ones we normally lost first} and low and behold, her bottom left tooth wiggled. I said, "Oh my goodness, you have a loose tooth!!" She got the biggest grin on her face and teared up from the excitement. {She said her eyes were just watery!!}

Then the questions began:
** "Will the tooth fairy really come and give me presents?"
** "What if I am bad? Will she not come then?" {Where this came from I do not know. We have never used Santa not bringing gifts, etc as a leverage for good behavior!! Who knows with this child!!!}
** "What if it falls out when I brush my teeth?"
** "Where will the tooth fairy put my presents?"
** "Is the tooth fairy real?"
** and on and on........

Now she just has to figure out how to get her pajamas on, brush her teeth, and get in bed with only one usable hand--because the other hand has not stopped wiggling the tooth since she found out it was loose!!!

And, I was just informed, the other bottom tooth is alittle loose also.

It could be a fun Christmas break--a visit from Santa AND the tooth fairy!!!

"See, it's this one!"
**I just hope the drama of pulling out her tooth is not to the same exaggerated level it was in previous years, with a child that will remain nameless!!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

amazing...

I normally would not have a random post about 'the dog', but while I was going through pictures tonight...

Well, I think they speak for themselves!!

9 weeks old
15 lbs
14 weeks old
35 lbs

And no, Emma has not shrunk:):)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

winter wonderland...

or at least the beginnings of a snow covered land.

Last night's weather forecast was for 1 to 3 inches of snow overnight and then a period of freezing rain.

You can probably guess what M's reaction to this news was...

M: " OOO WHOOO! A SNOW DAY TOMORROW!"

Well, the phone did not ring at 5:15 to let us know that school was called off.

There was no snow on the ground when M's alarm clock went off at 6:30.

It was a typical Tuesday school day.

Until later that morning....


The snow began to fall.

The roads began to ice over.

The phone rang telling us the AM Kindergarten buses were not bringing the kids home. Could we please come get them.

The Jr. High-ers were teased with the hint of an early dismissal.

And then...


The snow stopped.

The salt trucks 'salted' the roads.

The middle school dismissed ON TIME!!!

Oh well, M can always hope for the rains to come early tomorrow morning with dropping temperatures.

Maybe she can get a 2 hour delay out of it:)

snow fun

I like snow!!!

Two friends out in the snow
I've been out for 10 minutes. I am cold!!!
Making snow angels

Okay Mom, I am smiling. It is cold. Please hurry!!

Monday, December 15, 2008

gggggrrrrrrrrr.......

I.

GIVE.

UP.

!!!!!!!!!!!

Another Christmas gift foiled.

By the 5 year old!!!

GRRRRR!!!!!!!!

We just ran into Steve and Barry's after M's dance class to buy s___________ {they read this blog so I cannot write what it is} for two of M's friends in England.

Run in, grab s________, run out.

No big deal, right?

Wrong!!!

As we walked through the store, M kept trying to get me to look at a coat she likes. She had seen it when we were there a few weeks ago. I was ignoring her, acting as if I could not see what she was pointing to. She said, "Fine!! I'll ask Santa for it." {She is 12--she knows}.

We carried on to towards the checkout. As we passed the coat again, she makes a comment about how great it is. I said, "I sure hope Santa gets it for you."

And then it happens.

Behind me I hear, "But we already got her that coat."

My mouth drops. I hmm and haaa my way through a sentence, trying not to lie. "E, I did not get that coat for M. You are confused."

"Ah hah. Remember the other day? Daddy and I got it for her."

I could not believe the words were coming out of her mouth.

She has never told anyone about a gift before.

I could have hugged her--really tight.

The girls know Christmas is going to be simple this year {We learned, living in a 400 sq. foot dorm room in England, that we do not need all of the 'things' that people think are necessities. Oh yeah, and the whole 'no job' thing too!} So, when there are only going to be a few presents under the tree, you want them to have items in them that they really want. M doesn't ask for much. I was so happy to have found something she would really be excited about under the tree. Well, it will be under the tree--the surprise will be absent.

M just laughed and said, "It doesn't matter, Mom."

Lesson of the night---DO NOT let E know about any gifts.

or... Leave E at home!

Friday, December 12, 2008

a quiet evening...

How often does this happen?

No one home but ME!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tonight is the Christmas party for the Jr. High students at church. Steve drove Michaela to the B's house. Emma went with them to play with the younger sister who is not part of the party. So...I am all alone. WOW!!

I have washed a few loads of laundry {oh, the glamorous life:)}, watched last night's episode of CSI on Netflix, and not much else. BUT...I have done it all with no interruptions. PRICELESS! Next, cleaning the toilets. {I know, I know. You envy me.}

What's been happening with us, you ask.

Well...

Michaela is doing great. She got all A's on her report card---even in MATH!!!!!! She keeps busy with homework every night and is finishing up reading the Twilight series. She enjoyed the movie, but she says the books are so much better. Last Monday, we went to the optometrist for an eye exam and she came out with her new contacts. She is loving them!!! The contact fitter was impressed with the ease she was able to get them in and out--15 minutes to get them in and out TWICE. Not bad for the first time. She has had no trouble with them since. Of course, I cannot stand watching her, so I am NO HELP! She is looking forward to Christmas break. She actually wishes for a snow day at least once a week:)

Emma Shea is Emma Shea. She is loving Kindergarten. Of course we had our first, "So and so said she was not my friend. It made me sad." Oh how I dislike this stage in little girls!! She also had an eye exam last Monday. She has 20/20 vision, a slight astigmatism, and acuity better than most adults. She did great with the puffs in her eyes, but wasn't crazy about the dilating drops. She is keeping busy by playing with her toys, driving us nutty, and practicing her reading. As it has been unbelievably cold lately, playing outside has tapered off. She loves doing crafts and is looking forward to starting her big sister' present next week. She is so excited about Christmas--I love the Christmas season at this age!!! And she wants S.N.O.W.!!! Is she crazy?????

Stephen is busy with his to do list; waiting to hear about a job--any job!!! He has had three interviews with one company. They want him but they are on a hiring freeze right now. There was a meeting in Chicago this week to see about how to get around the hiring freeze. We should hear something next week. Anyone out there hiring???? Anywhere. We will re-locate!!!!!

I am doing very little. I help Steve with his to do list. And by help I mean I write it and choose the colors, placement, ... and then critique the finished product. I went today to take my Compass test. As I expected, I have to take 2 refresher Math classes before I can go on to the Pre-Calc required for the course work. {21 years is a long time to go back to try to retrieve useless math.} I will begin classes on February 2nd--probably 12 credit hours. Yeah!! I am excited!! Not much else to report.

Cali, the newest addition to our family, is growing leaps and bounds. She weighed 31 pounds on Tuesday--that was a weight gain of 2 pounds in 5 days!!!! She is 3 months old now--a small horse!!! We are attending puppy classes at Petsmart. She is doing well. I think there is hope!!!

That is our life in a nutshell. Nothing too exciting.

I will post pictures of the girls tomorrow.

Monday, December 08, 2008

prayer request

If you have found my blog from MckMama's 'Not Me!' Monday post, I already know you believe in the power of prayer.

We have been overseas with the Air National Guard for the last 44 months and have returned to the States with no job. Unfortunately, this is one of the worst economic times to be trying to get hired--anywhere.

So...I am asking that if you happen to stop by today, please pray for my husband's pursuit of a job and the 4 interviews he has today.

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose {Roman 8:28}

He hath made every thing beautiful in his time. {Ecclesiastes 3:11}

"not me" monday...

It's hard to believe it has been a week already since the last "Not Me" Monday.

7 days of funny, embarrassing, unbelievable things we did DID NOT do to write about!!!

Free therapy for those things in life that make you say "Hmmm!"

Stop on over to Mckmama's blog for more fun confessions hypothetical situations that DID NOT happen to us.

In the last 7 days...

It was NOT ME that rearranged the ornaments on the tree after my daughters went to bed. It really doesn't matter if all of the ornaments were clumped together , with empty spots here and there. It is about the experience of creating holiday memories with the girls, not about how the tree looks. So I am sure as I sit here looking at the tree, the ornaments are exactly where they were originally placed--looking beautiful!!

It was NOT ME that used a small amount of snow as an excuse to stay home and not attend a Christmas party. I love trying to find clothes to wear and getting 'fixed' up to go out and socialize. I DID NOT want to stay in my comfy fleece pants and sweatshirt, sit in front of the fire, and veg out with the girls and hubby. A dusting of snow and a little ice wouldn't stop me. Never. Nope NOT ME!!

And it definitely was NOT ME that stayed in those comfy fleece pants and sweatshirts all day only to go to bed in them. That is nasty. I always put on clean pajamas before I go to bed. I would never sleep in the clothes I laid around the house in all day. I was taught better than that.

I know it was NOT ME that had my husband run late to an appointment because I needed him to be around in case big bit needed help with her new contacts. I can handle watching her putting things in her eyeballs--I do NOT need my husband to stick around for something so simple. Anything having to do with the eyeball DOES NOT give me the heebie geebies!!

It is NOT ME that is going to take the math portion of the ACT Compass test this week at CS.

It is NOT ME that is registering for classes in January.

It is NOT ME starting classes for a new career this February--5 days before my 40th birthday.

OH. MY. GOODNESS!!!! It is NOT ME that is turning 40 in 2 months!!! NO WAY! Can't be me!!! I am still in my 20's!!!!! {Which leads to a lot of explaining since I have a 12 year old:)}

It was NOT ME that had the desire to step on the little boy that was under the pew after church services smacking my legs. I have patience. I realize that some children are just 'more exuberant' than others. They just need to express themselves. They are 'all boy'. It certainly WAS NOT ME that wanted to go to the mother and tell her to get her 5 year old under control. I know that we all have different child rearing philosophies and I am tolerant of those that allow their children to express themselves with disrespect.

It is NOT ME that just built a fire (i.e. asked my husband nicely whined to my husband) and turned on Quantum Leap on NETFLIX. It is 12:06am. It is bedtime. I am going to bed. I AM NOT staying up all night!

Okay, your turn!!

What did you NOT do this week.

Come on...don't leave me out here in 'the land of brutal honesty' all by myself.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

making memories...

Last night we began getting ready for the holiday season.
We decorated the Christmas tree.
We decorated the mantle.
We continued many family traditions.

As each ornament was placed on the tree, one of the girls would ask, "Who is this one from?" "What is this???" "When did we get this one?" With each ornament placed on the tree, I was able to share snippets of Christmases past; my family Christmases, Steve's past Christmases, and our Christmases together. We were able to laugh together over silly memories. I was able to share stories of a Grandfather they never got to know. We made beautiful memories as we made a beautiful tree.

As I sat admiring our 'masterpiece', with the glow of the white lights twinkling in the dark, I began thinking about the memories that covered our tree. While our tree will not make the cover of a magazine. It is not color coordinated. It is not 'designer'. Yet I can not imagine a more beautiful tree.

To some, the ornaments may look old and ratty...

but to me they are treasures; ornaments that hung on the Christmas trees of my father when he was a little boy.

To others, some may look like they have seen better days...

but to me, memories of Ms. Bybee teaching me to knit when I was 9 years old.


A flesh colored angel to some...

to me: the catalyst to be able to tell the girls their daddy was in Girls Scouts when he was younger!


a cheap cling wrapped heart to you...

to me, memories of our first Christmases together when we were short on money poor and we got ornaments free when we filled up at certain petrol stations

Intertwined among the memories of the past are the memories being made today. Michaela's First Christmas ornament hangs beside the ornament Steve and I bought on our honeymoon. Emma Shea's gold noodle garland is next to the mailbox my grandmother made when I was in high school. The past and the present meld together to create new memories. Memories that my girls will be able to share with their children. Nothing is more beautiful than that!!!!

So, while our tree will not be featured in a decorator's magazine, I can not imagine sitting here in the glow of the twinkling lights of any other tree.



***Steve was actually NOT in GS. His mother was the leader for his sister's troop and he had to go along to the meetings and sometimes he did the activities. But, it is so much more fun to tell the girls he was IN GS!!!

Monday, December 01, 2008

"not me" monday...

It's that time again. Our weekly therapy session. The day we all confess all the crazy things we did...oops, I mean DID NOT do this past week.
If you need some good laughs today, click on the icon above for more "Not Me" confessions.
Okay. Here it goes....
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I DID NOT hide my daughter's Christmas present, from Santa, in my closet. This said Santa gift I DID not hide in my closet was definitely NOT found by the daughter. I certainly would have hid it better than that. I would not have left it in the bag on the floor by my husband's shoes--in plain sight. That would be crazy. I am a procrastinator. I would not have already bought a Christmas gift. So I guess it's NOT ME that has to find a new gift from Santa.
Whew!!! I was scared there for a minute.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I am pretty sure it was NOT ME that allowed my daughter to go to Thanksgiving dinner at our friend's house in her dress up clothes. I certainly would not have allowed her to wear an old sequined leotard and skirt out in public. I would have told her to go upstairs and change into some 'real' clothes. I know it is important to stress boundaries. Guess she must have really had on jeans and a sweater.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
It was NOT ME that went to bed at 8:00am Saturday morning. I DID NOT stay up all night watching Netflix movies and painting Emma's canvases. I know the importance of a regular sleep routine. I would have gone to bed at a normal hour. I would have gotten my rest so I could be a productive Mommy and wife!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Nope! It was NOT ME that yelled at my oldest daughter for not having her Bible lesson done last Sunday morning--when I myself did not have mine done. I DID NOT get upset with her for trying to do it as we were leaving to drive to church. It was NOT ME that grounded her(from watching Netflix) for a week. That would be hypocritical. Wrong.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
And since it was NOT ME that grounded my daughter, it could not have been me that gave her a reprieve on Wednesday evening because she was spending the night at a friend's house. I know the importance of consistency in discipline. I would definitely make her serve out her entire punishment! Must gave been someone else that gave in.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I know it was NOT ME that had my oldest daughter sneak out to the car of the family she was spending the night with as to avoid a scene with the youngest. I would not try to avoid a crying scene. I would kiss my oldest good-bye, explain to the younger one that her sister was spending the night with R, and then deal with the tears and the"I want to go too!"s. I am strong, I can deal with constant drama, and I never try to avoid conflict.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
And it's NOT ME that just made it to #3 on MCKMAMA's link. I am in bed because it is 1:30am!!!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

a sunday lesson...

I have decided to post a lesson each Sunday from notes from classes or sermons. It is a good way for me to meditate upon God's word more throughout the week.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
THANK GOD FOR GOD.
With this being the week of Thanksgiving festivities; family and friend gathering together to enjoy fellowship and friendship, opportunities being taken to remember all that we have to be thankful for, we must remember to thank God for God.
In James 1:16-17, we are shown that God is the provider of all things good and perfect. It doesn't take much effort to look around our lives and see all that we are blessed with. Without God, our lives are devoid of light and goodness. We are creatures with no hope--following a god of inconsistency and darkness.

Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.{I John 1:16-17}

Be thankful for GOD....

...because He is all powerful; omnipotent.

I John 4:4 comforts us by letting us know that we can overcome false teachers; those that test our spirit because our God is greater than all that may come against us.

You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. {I John 4:4}

... because He is good.

We sing a song with our girls, "My God is so good, so strong and so mighty. There's nothing my God cannot do.
And He is.

...because He is love.

What greater love can be shown than that which has been shown to us by God. He has prepared an eternal home for the faithful and He sacrificed His only Son so that those that are obedient to His word can live in His presence in eternity .

The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. {I John 4:8-10}

...because He is incorruptible.

Though we are sinners, falling short of God's word, God is sinless. God is truth and light and is faithful to His word.

...in the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago... {Titus 1:2}

This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. {I John 1:5)

...because He is patient with us.

Throughout all of history, mankind has shown hatred, apathy, disregard for God and His love for us. Yet, with all of the followers of sin; the neglect of the truth, God has remained patient. Christ has not returned to take the faithful to heaven because God wants all to have the opportunity to accept Him in their lives and be baptized for the remission of our sins. He wants none to perish.

The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. {2 Peter 3:9}

...because He is faithful.

God is unwavering in His desire for our obedience. He does not falter in what He requires of ALL man for their salvation. He is consistent in His love for us. He has promised a glorious home in heaven for those who live a faithful life. He will not turn away from us. He means what He says, and He says what He means.

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful {Hebrews 10:23}

There are times in our lives that we may questions the 'goodness' of God; the presence of God in our lives. There are times when we are confronted with heartache, uncertainty, and temptations. Times we question 'Why?'; 'Why me?'. Times we feel our Lord has left us. That we are alone. But we are not. Our God is a gracious, patience, loving, merciful God. Our God is a God that we can lean on; that we can give all of our troubles to. Our God is good.


Thank God for God!!!!
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Today marks the.....
end of November...wow, how this year has flown!

beginning of the Christmas season....I am not sure I am ready for that!

end of NABLOPOMO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I made it.

30 post in 30 days.

You wouldn't think that writing about something everyday for 30 days would be difficult, but it was exhausting at times.

I enjoyed it. It was great to actually do something with my time. To use some 'brain power'!!??

Now I can waste my nights just surfing the net for useless information!!

But it is over.

NaBloPoMo 2008 has come to a close.

There is always next year to look forward to!!!!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

today is the day....

UPDATE:
Did Auburn even show up???????

Alabama: 36
Auburn: 0

It's a good thing they won!
Things would be U.G.L.Y. in The Shoals if The Tide had fallen!!!!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I believe it began 30 minutes ago.

I can imagine the scene at the Hunters...
everyone decked out in their blue and orange crimson and gray
all eyes glued to the t.v.
calmly taking in the activities flashing before them yelling and screaming at the television...

The undefeated Crimson Tide is on the field playing thrashing their rival team Au...I better not even put their name in the same post as The Tide....

Well, in the spirit of friendship....

ROLL TIDE!!!!!

Friday, November 28, 2008

santa has to start over....

To begin with, yes we do allow our children to 'believe' in Santa.
Yes, we perpetuate the story of Ol' Saint Nick.
We most certainly believe!!!

When Michaela was about 3, we decided that we were going to change how many presents Santa left under the tree.

We listened to the two or three items she would tell Santa she liked.

'Santa' would then bring ONE of the items--because he needs to have enough room in the sleigh for everyone's gifts.

Santa was so proud of himself this year.

He NEVER shops early, but about a month ago, the interactive baby doll that he knew would be on the wish list was found for about 60% less than normal, so it was purchased!

Yoo hoo...
Santa gift
Saved money

Okay, so maybe my closet wasn't the best spot for Santa to leave Emma's present.

Maybe, Santa should have considered that Emma might go into my closet to look for Michaela's slipper--because MY closet is the first place I would look for Michaela's slipper????

So, the doll was discovered, with MUCH excitement--from Emma, Of course, I wanted to scream in frustration!!!!

The doll is still in the closet. It WILL be under the tree--with a tag from Mommy and Daddy instead of Santa.

And Santa has to start over.

I hope Emma can come up with something else because the only other item on her Santa list was a $500.00 stuffed horse she saw at H*me G**ds!!!!

*** I knew my chronic procrastination was a positive personality attribute!!!!!!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

happy thanksgiving...

I hope on this day of thanksgiving, you were blessed with family and friends, that you had more food than you could eat, and that your day was filled with love, laughter, and thankfulness.

As you were surrounded by those that you love, I hope you had time to think about what you are thankful for.


And I hope the list was long.

Because we are all so blessed.

By a God that is good.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

maybe the rules have changed...

I mean, I have been living in England for three years. I have been driving on the right side of the car and on the left side of the road for over a 1000 days. Maybe I have forgotten proper driving rules in America.

After all, when I left, drivers drove in the right hand lane unless passing. They did not stay in the left lane of the motorway refusing to get over into the completely CLEAR right lane. They did not require the the passing driver to get into the right lane and go around them. Nope. All passing was done on the left.
Hey wait, maybe all of these drivers are from the UK and they forgot that we pass on the left and not the right.

I'm just saying!!

Merging etiquette seems to have changed also. I was under the impression that if you are driving down the motorway, in the right-hand lane, and you are coming upon an entrance ramp, you move over to another lane. This allows the oncoming cars to safely enter the motorway. They do not have to come to a stop in the merging lane and attempt to enter 70-80 mph traffic at a slower speed. The cars on the motorway move over, the merging traffic enters the motorway safely.

Again, I could be mistaken!

I guess I had better go to the DMV and read up on the new driving rules so I too can be a rude, self-absorbed driver.

rant over....

until I drive down 71 S again!!!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

what I am thankful for...

There are so many things in my life that I am thankful for.
  • a roof over my head
  • my children
  • the church we attend
  • the ability to pay our bills
  • my friends

The one 'thing' in my life that I am most thankful for is my husband.

Yes he is frustrating and annoying at times.

Yes, he does not do things in my 'time frame' often, {isn't really sounding like a post of praise, is it?}

He is a typical man:)

BUT.....

He is the sweetest, most generous man I know.

He rarely says 'No'--not even to my crazieat requests.

He gets up with the girls to get them ready for school.

He lets me sleep in.

He does laundry/dishes/cooking.

He paints--even though he hates it.

He holds my hair back and rubs my back when I am ill.

He irons his own clothes.

He gives my pedicures--and will kill me when he reads this.

He reads stories to Emma.

He helps Michaela with her homework.

He takes care of a dog he did not want.

....the list could go on and on.

Steve, thank you for being the Christian husband and father that you are.

Monday, November 24, 2008

a prayer for parents...

We, as parents, pray for our children daily.
We pray that they will grow up to be happy, healthy God-fearing adults.
We pray for all that is good to come to them.

We, as parents, should pray for ourselves.
We should pray that we have the wisdom to guide them in the way they should go.
We, as parents, should pray that we can be the proper examples to our children; an example that teaches them Christian values and morals.


Dear Heavenly Father,

Make me a better parent. Teach me to understand my children, to listen patiently to what they have to say and to answer all their questions kindly.

Keep me from interrupting them, talking back to them and contradicting them. Make me as courteous to them as I would have them be to me.

Give me the courage to confess my sins against my children and to ask them forgiveness when I know that I have done them wrong.

Grant that I may never vainly hurt the feelings of my children. Forbid that I should laugh at their mistakes or resort to shame and ridicule as punishment.

Let me not tempt my child to lie or steal. So guide me hour by hour that I might demonstrate by all I say and do that honestly produces happiness.

Reduce, I pray, the meanness in me. May I cease to nag, and when I am out of sorts, help me O Lord, to hold my tongue. Blind me to the little errors of my children, and help me to see the good things they do.

Give me a ready word to honest praise. Help me to grow up with my children, to treat them as those of their own age, but let me not expect of them the judgments and conventions of adults.

Allow me not to rob them of the opportunity to learn for themselves, to think, to choose and to make decisions. Forbid that I should ever punish them for my selfish satisfaction.

May I grant them all their wishes that are reasonable,
And may I have the courage always to withhold a privilege which I know will do them harm.

Make me fair and just, and considerate and companionable to my children that they will have a genuine esteem for me. Make me fit to be loved and imitated by my children.

Amen.

quoted in "Dear Abby."
author: Garry C. Myers

Sunday, November 23, 2008

worry not...

6. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7.And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7

During our lives there are always moments of the unknown. There are always times we are uncertain about what life has in store for us. The three years with the Air Force certainly lead to MANY times of frustration; times of wondering 'what next'? I feel that in those three years, I grew in my ability to handle times of stress with grace. Or at least with more grace than I had in the past. Having returned to the States has not alleviated the 'unknown'; uncertainty is still a major part of our day to day life. Do I handle it as I should? Some times. Do I need to do better? Every day! Not knowing what our job situation will be when the savings account runs out certainly has caused me to worry about our future. It is easy to say, "I have given it to God." Actually allowing God to work in our lives in His time is difficult--especially for someone that likes to have things in control to be in control of all things. My worry manifests itself in impatience with my family, cynicism with the world, and a lack of desire to be productive in any aspect of my life. I become overwhelmed with the 'worry' and I lose control of the day to day aspects of life.

WORRY, in Greek, is defined as having a divided mind. Solomon wrote that, "an anxious heart weighs a man down. We are commanded by God to be anxious for nothing. We are to rely on Him for our needs. God has promised to take care of our needs. When we worry, we are telling God that we do not have faith in what He has promised us. We are sinning.

There are areas of our lives that we should have legitimate concerns about-our health, our souls, our children, our eternal salvation. We can be concerned, but we are commanded to not worry.

What is the difference between concern and worry?

Concern focuses on legitimate responsibilities and probable difficulties and produces meaningful action.

Worry focuses on improbable things and negative self talk that produces no meaningful outcome. Worry is based on fear NOT fact.

Fear is the opposite of faith. It s a symptom of a lack of faith. It is a failure to trust in God. Worry is the prayer to the wrong God.

Worry tells us that 'I am on my own.", but God tells us in Hebrews 13:5 ...I will never desert you, nor will I forsake you.

Worry shows our unbelief, but Romans 8:28 states: And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Worry proclaims, "I can't" but Philippians 4:13 assures us that all things are possible through Christ. {I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.}

Worry is assuming a responsibility God never intended us to have. By worrying, we are telling God that WE are in control; that we do not trust Him or need Him. We are turning our back on Him.

There will always be unknowns in our lives. There will always be times of uncertainty. Life is unpredictable. Bad things happen to good people. As Christians, we have the blessing of a heavenly Father that is always there to listen to our fears and desires. God has promised never to forsake us. He will bear our burdens if only we ask.

We must do OUR part.

We have to maintain our faith and trust in God.
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." {Deuteronomy 31:6}

We have to control our thoughts.
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. {Philippians 4:8}

We must take meaningful action.
The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. {Philippians 4:9}

We must turn to God daily in prayer.
Hear my prayer, O LORD! And let my cry for help come to You. {Psalm 102:1}

We must give God our concerns.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. {John 14:27}

We must remember....
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. {Matthew 6:24}

We I must remember that I am nothing without God.
That I need Him.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

i am thankful for...

Emma Shea's Thankful list
  1. family
  2. friends
  3. baby dolls
  4. world
  5. Thanksgiving


Friday, November 21, 2008

timing is everything...

i was soooo excited.

my friend told me about
this website that allows you to watch television shows on your computer.

yes, I know it probably has been around forever, but I have been living across the pond for over three years and had not heard about it.

and yes, i know you can watch it on television but, we do not have any antenna or satellite to watch anything on television. we limit the girls to dvds and netflix shows we choose.

so...

i will not have to wait for the end of the current season of brothers and sisters and grey's anatomy for them to be available on Netflix.

yoohoo!!

i just went online.

i finished downloading the necessary stuff {that's the technical term}.

I clicked on grey's

and....

i can only see the last 5 episodes.

AAAAHHHHH.....

episode one 1, 2, 3, and 4 are not available anymore.

AAAAAHHHHHH......

brothers and sisters--- the same!!!

AAAAAHHHHHH !!!!!!!!!!!

technology is great...

as long as your timing is right!!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

we seem to be rushing our lives away...

It seems that everywhere I look Christmas is being celebrated already--people have their trees up and Christmas music is being played everywhere. It is sad to me that the holiday that represents thankfulness and gratitude is being overshadowed by the holiday of want. The Thanksgiving holiday seems to be getting pushed further and further into the shadows; we go straight from Halloween (another holiday of getting) to Christmas. We have been a society of greed and selfishness for such a long time, we have forgotten to be thankful.
So, take a few minutes everyday.
Look around your life.
Make a list of what you are thankful for, rather than making a list of what you want.

Facts:

1. Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November in the United States.
2. By the fall of 1621 only half of the pilgrims, who had sailed on the Mayflower, survived. The survivors, thankful to be alive, decided to give a thanksgiving feast.
3. Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the second Monday in October in Canada.
4. The Plymouth Pilgrims were the first to celebrate the Thanksgiving.
5. The pilgrims arrived in North America in December 1620.
6. The Pilgrims sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to reach North America.
7. The pilgrims sailed on the ship, which was known by the name of 'Mayflower'.
8. They celebrated the first Thanksgiving Day in the fall of 1621.
9. They celebrated the first Thanksgiving Day at Plymouth, Massachusetts.
10. The drink that the Puritans brought with them in the Mayflower was the beer.
11. The Wampanoag Indians were the people who taught the Pilgrims how to cultivate the land. 12. The Pilgrim leader, Governor William Bradford, had organized the first Thanksgiving feast in the year 1621 and invited the neighboring Wampanoag Indians also to the feast.
13. The first Thanksgiving feast was held in the presence of around ninety Wampanoag Indians and the Wampanoag chief, Massasoit, was also invited there.
14. The first Thanksgiving celebration lasted three days.
15. President George Washington issued the first national Thanksgiving Day Proclamation in the year 1789 and again in 1795.
16. The state of New York officially made Thanksgiving Day an annual custom in 1817.
17. Sarah Josepha Hale, an editor with a magazine, started a Thanksgiving campaign in 1827 and it was result of her efforts that in 1863 Thanksgiving was observed as a day for national thanksgiving and prayer.
18. Abraham Lincoln issued a 'Thanksgiving Proclamation' on third October 1863 and officially set aside the last Thursday of November as the national day for Thanksgiving. Whereas earlier the presidents used to make an annual proclamation to specify the day when Thanksgiving was to be held.
19. President Franklin D. Roosevelt restored Thursday before last of November as Thanksgiving Day in the year 1939. He did so to make the Christmas shopping season longer and thus stimulate the economy of the state.
20. Congress passed an official proclamation in 1941 and declared that now onwards Thanksgiving will be observed as a legal holiday on the fourth Thursday of November every year.

For more Thanksgiving activities and fun quizzes, check out this site.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

wordless wednesday...

not a look of joy....

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

'not me' monday...

I guess I should look at the time before I post--12:38am is actually Tuesday:):)



I DO NOT have any 'Not Me(s)' this week because I have done nothing. I have a full life and most certainly would have many things to write about that I DID NOT do this week. So, I am sure if you scroll down you will find lots of things I did NOT do:)

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NOPE--NOTHING!!!

Have a great Monday!!!!!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

my first meme...

I have never participated in a meme before, but I figured I would give it a go.

5 things you want your kids to learn--before they grow up

1. There will always be people who are not considerate of others--at all ages. These people think only of themselves; they are mean. Do not lose your kindness. Let your light shine.

In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets. {Matthew 7:12}

2. Do your best in all that you do. You may not always end up with the outcome you expected or desired, but as long as you have given it your all, you have succeeded!

"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." {Philippians 4:13}

3. Choose your husband carefully. Marriage is forever. Your husband should be a man that shows you love and respect. He should be a man that you can show love and respect to.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her. {Ephesians 5:25}

4. Stand fast in your convictions. Do not give into peer pressure. Know what you believe and defend your morals.

But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good... {I Thess. 5:21}

5. Life will bring it's own stresses and difficulties. Do not go looking for them. Find laughter and humor in circumstances that may seem insurmountable at the time you are going through them.Trials come--grow from them. Build character with each hardship.

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose {Romans 8:28}

What do you want to teach your children?

Sunday, November 16, 2008

parenting...it is hard!!!!...

The sermon at church tonight was the first of two on parenting. It is amazing to me how God provides what we need. I have had a very difficult time parenting one of my children lately. Tears have been spilled from my eyes and prayers for wisdom offered up. God provided me support and guidance with a Sunday evening sermon.
I will add the insights as soon as I have them in a coherent form:)
~From God with Love ~
~Author Unknown~

Children are a blessing sent from God above. For us to care and nurture and most of all to love. God calls us to be parents and gives us all the tools. And when we feel like giving up, our strength He will renew. Children are a gift from God that He so freely lends. To make it through the childhood years, on Him we must depend. He must have a presence, you see it must take three. The parents, child and Christ at the center to be a family. From childhood days to a child full grown. Their joys and hurts are a parent's own. Times of joy and laughter and those times of tears. The times spent raising a child are surely the best of years. There comes that time in life when a child will leave the nest. We must send them off with love and a prayer and leave to God the rest. We've have shared the Word of God, we've taught them right from wrong. Now it's time to let them go and let them write their song. The faith instilled, the examples lived, and the lessons taught. All gifts that we've given our child, which will never be forgotten. There are many paths a child can take, right or wrong will remain unknown. But rest assured that in the end, they all lead back to home.

more to come....

Saturday, November 15, 2008

snippets from a lazy saturday...

The weather has changed once again.

It is cold and rainy.

But we are having great family Saturday--snuggling by the fire, eating chips and salsa from Margaritas, and watching a movie on NETFLIX.
What could be better?
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Emma Shea has come up with a few new phrases this week--besides the evil ones that come out when the demon possesses her.
*While Michaela, Emma, and I were walking through the store; Michaela talking non-stop, Emma looked at her and said, "Shhhhh!!! I would like some peace and quiet."
She said she has heard me say that--I cannot imagine that. I love to hear my daughters' lyrical voices nonstop. I hang on their every word.:o}
*Tonight Michaela went into the kitchen to get a drink. Emma looked at her and said,"Would you kindly please get me a glass of water?" Kindly please?????
****This politeness after a VERY difficult morning, afternoon, day.
*Her favorite word has changed from 'actually' to 'eventually'.
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YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!! I figured out how to put a strike-through in my post.
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I cannot believe I forgot to post for NABLOPOMO on Thursday.
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It's the most wonderful time of the year day---bedtime for anyone with 4 legs or under the age of 13!!!
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It is adult time--no whining {unless I don't get to choose the movie:)}, no crying {unless I choose to watch Brian's Song:( }, no interruptions!!!
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Hope you have a great evening. Talk to you tomorrow!!
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Friday, November 14, 2008

just a little reminder to myself...

because it has been one of those weeks--and being a parent is H.A.R.D.
Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Psalm 127:3 Boy, does she know how to push the limits. Pray for my patience...and her survival:)

You are being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might, so that you might patiently endure everything with joy
Colossians 1:11

Instead, in every way we demonstrate that we are God's servants by tremendous endurance in the midst of difficulties, hardships, and calamities...
2 Corinthians 6:4

I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13

In Your righteousness deliver me and rescue me; Incline Your ear to me and save me.
Psalm 71:2