Nine years ago today God brought into this world a sweetly stubborn baby boy. Easton is the kid that always keeps us guessing. He's such a little lover. We love you so much Easton. Hope you have a wonderful birthday!!
I have been MIA from my blog and I hate that! I really enjoy writing posts, even though only a few people probably even read them. I am a big believer in journaling and this is just another outlet for me to express and share things that are going on in my life. I've been dealing with some hard things lately and that has left me with no desire to blog. Actually, I don't even feel like I have anything to post. I am slowly healing, thanks to an amazing and faithful God. He is teaching me so much about myself and other people. I have the most amazing friends and parents (x2). I truly cannot comprehend how people make it through the valleys of life without Him. He makes so many promises to us that He WILL keep, we just have to have faith and a willing heart. I am amazed to look back and see all the ways God had blessed me and my family. Sometimes I don't even realize they are blessings until I move past them.
Last night a great friend, Becky, called me up and said she had cooked a roast and asked if I wanted half of it. Heck yeah!! We were seriously planning on eating leftovers, no one was happy about that. My kids were so excited to have roast. So Parker peeled potatoes while me and Liv picked up the roast. My boys devoured that roast. It was tender, like butta ;)! There was just a little bit left but both boys made sure to tell me not to throw it away!! It was a good night. Thanks Becky! God is looking over us.
I am so blessed by genuine friendships. It's times like this when you find out who your true friends are. I love that I can tell any of them about my day and how I'm really feeling and they will still love me ;)! I love that I can ask them to pray for me and I know prayers will go up. I love that I can talk with them about our Saviour. What a blessing.
Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me. Psalm 54:4
I want this time of my life to have purpose. I don't want to go through all of this in vain and with nothing to show. I know God will redeem this entire situation...I just need to be patient.
One of my favorite verses that has given me a lot of strength throughout is Exodus 14:14, The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm. It's such an uncomplicated verse and has brought me so much peace.
If you are struggling with ANYTHING in your life, look to God. He alone is the great Transformer and Redeemer. Seek Him with all your heart and He will always be faithful.
My name is Pride. I am a cheater. I cheat you of your God-given destiny...because you demand your own way. I cheat you of contentment...because you "deserve better than this." I cheat you of knowledge...because you already know it. I cheat you of healing...because you're too full of me to forgive. I cheat you of holiness...because you refuse to admit when you are wrong. I cheat you of vision...because you'd rather look in the mirror than out a window. I cheat you of genuine friendship...because nobody's going to know the real you. I cheat you of love...because real romance demands sacrifice. I cheat you of greatness in heaven...because you refuse to wash another's feet on earth. I cheat you of God's glory...because I convince you to seek your own. My name is Pride. I am a cheater. You like me because you think I'm always looking out for you. Untrue. I'm looking to make a fool of you. God has so much for you, I admit, but don't worry...
The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” Matthew 7:25-27
Things seldom turn out like we want. Thank God He is a god of promises and lately I can see how real those promises are. Hebrews 13:5 promises that God will never leave us nor forsake us. I know that to be true even in the darkest places of this world.
Please don't ever discount Satan either. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour, 1 Peter 5:8. It isn't enough to know Satan is real, we are told to be alert. He's sneaky and unless you are watching you're liable to fall victim.
I will probably make some changes to this blog soon...possibly starting another one. I will keep you informed of those changes but please keep praying!! 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to 'pray continually'.
Olivia loves to read, especially out loud, like she has an audience. She'll ask us a lot of times if she can read to us. I try to embrace these times because I know one day she won't want to sit and read to me...she's growing quickly!! Last night Phil went in her room and listened to her for awhile. I thought that was so sweet!! Keep reading Livie...it's such a blessing!! Love you!!
I subscribe to a magazine through Focus on the Family called Thriving Family. I love the way this magazine helps you incorporate God into everyday things. It's full of positive information...much needed in our negative world. I came across something this morning that I thought was great and something I definitely want to instill in my kids...hopefully it's not too late!! It's in the Sept/Oct 2010 issue in a section entitled Family Stages. The article is called "Stand up for Your Sibling".
While I typically stay out of my children's squabbles to let them work out their disagreements, I inevitably repeat the same litany: "Your sister or brother is your very best friend. We are a family. It is your job to defend one another against the world, not tear each other down. If a dispute takes place, it should be in defense of one another. Do you understand?" They didn't. Or at least I didn't think so. You can imagine my surprise when at the first parent-teacher conference their teacher raved about how well my children got along. "It is obvious they love each other on the playground and encouraging one another in class." My effort to instill in my children a respect for one another was fruitful. Their loving actions spoke louder than words.~Jamie Driggers
This is a deep desire I've had since my second child was born. I feel like I've failed to teach them the importance loving one another. On occasion they will surprise me and do things for each other out of nothing but pure kindness. As a mother, this brings me such joy. I need to be more prayerful for my kids and especially in how they treat each other. As I typed the article I noticed something else. The second to last sentence talks about being fruitful. John 15 talks about bearing much fruit. What an amazing God we have that allows us to see the fruit we bear. I don't look at the positive things in my life as 'fruit-bearing' but that's exactly what it is. And this happens because I believe in God and seek to remain in Him, v5. Instead of seeing the negative in people and yourself, look for the fruit.
We go every October to the Family Retreat with our church at Robber's Cave in southeastern Oklahoma. This is really a great time; a lot of bonding with family and friends. I always go into the weekend thinking it'll be a peaceful, restful weekend but soon realize it's anything BUT! It takes me a good week to recover from this weekend but it is well worth it.
I think Halloween at our house seems to diminish through the years. I really enjoy Halloween. Well, let me clarify...I like decorating for Halloween/fall and the weather that comes with the holiday, but I'm not a fan of dressing up. I enjoy seeing what my kids decide to be and helping them out with their costumes. This was the first annual Trunk or Treat at our church and it was a huge success! I did enjoy decorating our car (already thinking ahead to next year) and seeing all the people that came out. It was great opportunity for my kids to serve and I enjoyed watching them. We had a crazy brew in our trunk with a few cobwebs and spiders. Very last minute but I thought it went pretty well. Phil and I have started our own biker gang!! Moses & Rapunzel
Yesterday Parker turned lucky number 13!!! Wow!! My sweet baby is a teenager!! Phil and I took Parker and a couple of his friends to Cheesecake Factory for cheesecake. He asks for cheesecake for his birthday every year and for some reason we don't get it. So this year we decided to treat him with the best!! Yum!! Yum!! The grandparents met us there, even Papa Gary came all the way from Elk City to celebrate!! Then we headed over to Penn Square for a little shopping! We had a really good time. Jake and Tyler are really great kids, we always enjoy having them around!! Tyler, Parker & Jake with CHEESECAKE!! Mom & Dad The grandparents...sorry guys, someones eyes were closed in both pics!! Easton & Livie
It's been exactly one month since my last post and I feel like I have nothing to show for the last month of my life...sigh!! Well, I guess I can't exactly say that. I did go to NYC the end of September. Woohoo!! I love NYC SO much. It is really just a cool place. I still need to get pics off Jeana's camera but as soon as I do I'll post them. I'm still waiting for my girlfriends to commit to a trip there!
I have read a couple of books and I'm almost finished with another one. I probably need to do a few book reviews. I'll get that on here too. Reading is so relaxing for me, I really enjoy it.
Easton is getting his 'appliance' put in this morning at the Orthodontist. I hope all goes well for him and he's able to handle it. I think he only has to wear it for 4 months. It's a 'crank' they put in the roof of his mouth to correct his cross-bite.
We're going to An Affair of the Heart this weekend. I'm looking forward to that. Hopefully I'll have several new craft projects afterward. I miss crafting. I need my friend Becky to craft with me...she's SO talented!
Halloween is coming up. I love going to the stores and seeing all the Halloween decorations. Of course Target is my fav! This year our church is having a 'Trunk or Treat' and we're putting our car in it. There are prizes for the top three cars so that just put the pressure on to come up with something fabulous. Any ideas??
Parker's birthday is next week, the 28th. He turns 13 years. Does that officially make him a teenager? Sheesh!! He's already got the attitude. Nice!!!
And last, I still haven't forgotten about my ABCs. It just turned out to be a little harder then I thought. I'm on "F" and my kids haven't let me forget. They still give me ideas for each letter.
Olivia beat out the boys for the Oklahoma State football game ticket this last weekend. This was her first game and she had a great time. It really worked out well since Amelia went too. I imagine there will be a lot more games in her future. Aunt Cat took these pics for me, thanks Catherine!! Livie & Dad Livie & Amelia
This morning right before I left for work I realized we had deleted our last day of vacation pics without saving them. Pics are a pretty important thing to me and it just makes me sick. These were pics of Chicago and we had some pretty great ones. Needless to say, I'm not feeling well today!! I'm still holding out for a miracle though!
Thursday we went to The Henry Ford Museum in Detroit. I'm a history buff so I thought this was awesome. This museum has all kinds of things from throughout American History, it's really pretty incredible. I can say that we all enjoyed it. Liv & Parker is front of the Wiener Mobile One of the first milk trucks...my Pepaw was a "milk man" The kids playing in the giant foosball game Posers I think this is SO funny...Easton is doing a bomb drill from the 1950s GenX Anyone remember this stuff? Parker relating Modern Warfare with things of the past... Yes, that's Easton & Liv in 'jail' Proof that Livie hugged Parker...so sweet Livie in front of the 'Cinderella Carriage' This is the actual car President Kennedy was shot in. The top was put on afterward and several other Presidents still used this car. We took so many pictures this day...it was really a lot of fun!!
We were shown these videos on YouTube just this past Sunday and ironically The Today Show had a story on it the same week. Get ready to laugh...too funny!! For both entire videos go to YouTube and watch the actual news story first and then the video made from it. GOOD STUFF!!!
Wednesday was a trip into Detroit, it's about an hour and a half drive from East Lansing. Ken and Coeta were awesome to get us tickets to a Detroit Tigers game; they were playing the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. This was Easton and Liv's first experience to a MLB game. It was supposed to rain that day so before the rain came it was extremely hot and muggy! It didn't start raining until about the 7th inning so we were able to see most of the game! Their stadium is fairly new so that was cool to see! Afterward, we drove about 10 minutes to Canada. First time our kids went out of the country, I think they were a little fearful they wouldn't be allowed back in the US...hehe!! We went through a tunnel that ran under the river and it was a little strange. Ken said it actually went under the ground under the river. Windsor, Canada really doesn't have much to see but that's where Uncle Ken is from so we had a great tour guide. He told us a few mobster stories, too cool! We took a few pics and went to the only 'trinkets & trash' store in Windsor. We all brought home a little piece of Canada!! Grandma, Livie & Easton enjoying some ball game food! Papa Gary, Parker & Phil Coeta & Ken...they sat a few rows behind us! Welcome to Comerica Park YAY Livie!! One of the Rays coach threw her a ball!! The kids looking across the river to Detroit from the Canadian side. Phil and I with Detroit in the background. What do you guys see?? Great pic of the kids under the flags. The Gang, minus Coeta Well, that wraps up another day from our vaca...hope you're enjoying the pics! Only a couple more days left!!
I wanted to share with you something I just happened to run across while surfing the internet. It's a Bible Study Magazine that you can subscribe to, 6 issues for 1 year. I got my first issue in the mail last Friday and I'm very excited about it. I hope it will be a great tool for me to be more consistent with my daily studies. Something this awesome I just couldn't keep to myself. Check it out!! This was the first issue I got. Can't beat Beth Moore.
Tuesday we all packed into the Expedition...seriously, we PACKED in!! HA!! And headed west to the beach at Grand Haven. This was a cute little vacation town with fun shops, restaurants, and great beaches. I know, you probably don't think 'beach' when you think of Michigan but they have beautiful beaches. Grand Haven would be the perfect place to have a summer home...one day. If you ask, Livie will tell you this was her favorite day! She is definitely a beach bum.
We stayed at the beach for a couple of hours then headed to town to eat and check out a few shops. I think we could have enjoyed more time here but at least we got a taste. Parker working on his sand castle Parker what are you building?? I loved watching Liv jump off of Uncle Ken's shoulders...probably almost as much as she enjoyed doing it Easton, what are you doing? We were highly entertained watching these birds ransack these peoples things!! Phil, Livie, Ken & Coeta Just a cute pic of Liv playing on the rocks The lighthouse pier We have so many more pics but I narrowed it down. It was a good day!!