Wednesday, December 27, 2006

It was a wonderful season.......

We had a wonderful celebration of the birth of our Lord and Savior. This year found us with very little stress and a lot of love and enjoyment of the season.

On Friday the children and I (all three of them!) spent the day in the kitchen cooking and baking, and of course, eating! We played Christmas music and had a wonderful time together.

When Dh arrived home, on Friday night, we went to the movies to see Facing the Giants, http://www.pluggedinonline.com/movies/movies/a0002896.cfm, which was so good! Facing the Giants was a huge score for the media in winning one for the Kingdom! Then we had my extended family in for brunch on Saturday. There was lots of eating and enjoyment of each other and the gift that family is -- and a great pick up basketball game to end the afternoon!

Saturday night we splurged on yet another movie, The Nativity, which was so nice to put us all in the right focus and remind us why we celebrate the season. My 9 year old even commented on the way home, as we listened to some Christmas music, that he hadn't really thought much about the meaning of the songs until then! Yippeeee!!! The media scored another one for the Kingdom - which is, indeed, a Christmas Miracle!!!

DH and I spent a good deal of time discussing how stress free and enjoyable this Christmas Season was and trying to determine how to keep all the future ones as enjoyable. We were busy - actually in some ways busier than usual - but still managed to enjoy the experience. I know that when we began this holiday season I really wanted to be able to focus on the true meaning of the season and make sure my children didn't miss the real Christmas.

On Christmas Eve we attended Sunday Morning church and were delighted to sit in a packed church and feel the Lord's presence fully touching each and everyone there. The music was wonderful and our pastor dressed as Herod and gave the sermon from "Herods' perspective". It was interesting, but really makes me wonder...is that how our culture views Christmas and Christians?

Christmas Eve night we returned to church for the Candlelight Service and were accompanied by DH's parents. The children especially enjoyed having their Grandparents go to church with us. I think it lets them know they have a heritage of faith. We had dinner after church at our house and enjoyed a bit more time sharing the holiday with Dh's parents. They left in just enough time to drive the 1 hour home and make it to their church's 11:00 PM Christmas Eve Service.

Christmas morning was a slow, luxurious morning spent opening gifts and just enjoying each other. We visited my parents for dinner on Christmas night. It was such a great weekend.

Happy Birthday, Jesus!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

I am ready



I am ready to celebrate the birth of my Lord and Savior...I am ready for Christmas in all its glory. The last couple of days, I have basked in a slower pace and activities that helped me focus on why we celebrate this blessed event.

Here's to hoping you are celebrating with a sense of purpose, thankful hearts and the joy that only comes from Him.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Merry Christmas from the South


I live in a wonderful little town in the South. Some would call it a small city, especially since it is now considered a 'burb of Atlanta, but I prefer to hold on to the idea that we are a little town in the South. There is a street of wonderful, old Southern homes and for about 3 years I have *said/intended* to do a photo essay on the historical area of my town...but, I still haven't managed to do it --- yet. I am blessed to live in the town that I live. We have natural beauty, wonderful architecture, lovely people and community pride. As I was driving home today I did snap a photo of one of the lovely old homes that was decked out for the holidays. Isn't she gorgeous?

FYI, you can click on the photo for a larger view!

Monday, December 18, 2006

Christmas Tour Post 1 of 3

Welcome to my home at Christmas. I had planned to do BooMama's Christmas Tour but it fell on the same day that I was hosting DD's annual Christmas Sleep Over so rather than blogging I was preparing for a house full of teen age girl energy!

Won't you come in? I love to use live magnolia leaves along with twig garland and dried seed pods woven with lighted garland around my front door.

Another place I love to decorate is my mailbox. Again, I used live and artifical greenery to give some interesting texture.

Christmas Tour Post 2 of 3

Foyer Tree

DD's Tree (she does it herself now!)

DS#2's Tree

DS#1's Tree


My favorite Christmas Decoration. I love putting it out more than anything else each Christmas.
Our family room Tree. This is where all the action takes place and it has all 18 years of our marriage in memory on this tree.

Christmas Tour Post 3 of 3

This is the BooMama "free tree" in our master bath, On BooMama's blog she talked about a sale at Home Depot and DH and I just had to run out and get us one of her deals --- it was $29.99 with a mail in rebate of $30.00! Can't beat it!

This is the view I have in the evenings if I spin my computer chair around and look out into the foyer.

Our breakfast room has a small metal Christmas Tree candle holder and some Poinsettia Placemats to get in the spirit.

I do love decorating the dining room for Christmas!
Now that you have had the tour I hope you will sit and have a snack and tea with me.

Christmas Card!


In general I am one of those people who have their Christmas Cards completed and in the mail on Thanksgiving Day...not this year. I didn't even get around to taking the photo until last Tuesday night and then made a mad rush to the CVS to get some cards printed. Not exactly fancy but it worked! In case you can't wait to see yours....here it is:

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

School's out, school's out....no more tests, no more books...



















I completed my final exam today and sold my books back the bookstore....whooooHOOOO! Let the Christmas cheer commence!

DECEMBER 2oth UPDATE: I got an A (yep, A) in the class!

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Off to the ballet


Tonight, DD and DS#2 and I are off to see the annual production The Nutcracker . I am excited, DD is excited, DS#2 is excited He doesn't realize it is a ballet, he is just hiped up about the "soldiers fighting"...his words, not mine...he even told me that some of his little preschool classmates are going to the Nutcracker for girls and it is a ballet! I just looked innocent and said, "hmmmm". DH and DS#1 are spending the better part of the day at the Georgia Dome watching some football game. They left after DS#2's art class this morning and made a day of it with some "fan fest" before the game. They were excited and it is supposed to be an important game...who knows? Either way, I still haven't pointed out to DS#2 that DS#1 and Daddy are at a football game and that he will be attending the ballet with his sister and Mommy...denial isn't such a bad place!

This is actually the 1st time I have taken DS#2 to see The Nutcracker -- he is 5 -- and I am not sure why it has taken so long. Both DD (who danced in the Columbus (GA) Ballet's Nutcracker when she was little) and DS#1 have been, of course, but I have been remiss in introducing the little man to the experience. He loves The Nutcracker story and we read it frequently. I sometimes wonder why I let those kinds of things slip by with him...is it because I am busier with 3 than when I had 1 or 2? Is it because we have less urgency because we have all "been there, done that"? I need to be better about not letting things slide for him. I have to admit, though, I had actually tried to get tickets to Black Bear Theater's production of White Christmas but it was all sold out! http://www.blackbeardinnertheatre.com/public/EventDisplay.aspx?id=18 Maybe I do have a case of "been there, done that"! We did watch White Christmas on video last night, though.

I have finished Christmas Decorating and am ready to start my shopping. I am normally an overly prepared and ready kind of gal but this year I find myself NOT. DH and I are going out of town to celebrate our anniversary next weekend so I am feeling a bit of pressure to get this taken care of. I don't ever like to wait until the last minute...makes me tense!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Walking in a winter wonderland....


I don't have much time for journaling this week as my research paper is due on Friday and will need to be presented (along with PowerPoint presentation) on Monday and I have a test this week as well....BUT I just could not pass up posting one of my favorite winter photos. This isn't my house now, as we have been having 70 degree days here but was taken at my last house. Hopefully this will get you in the holiday spirit!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

In all things give Thanks...

Cultivating a thankful heart is one of my main goals in life. It doesn't come naturally for me, though I know how blessed I am. I know that the blessings in my life are from God’s Grace and Mercy and not of my own doing. I find myself, often, overwhelmed by that very concept. It is beyond my earthly ability to understand. I don’t spend time struggling to understand as much as I take time to just accept and be glad in it.

Thanksgiving is a once a year holiday but a daily requirement for me to keep my life in perspective and balance. Though, this year, our Thanksgiving won’t be a day like we usually have I am still Thanks filled!

I am thankful for my God, first and foremost. I am thankful that He loves me. I am set aside by God…I am a Saint! How could I not be thanks filled?

I have been blessed by a husband that loves and seeks God daily. He is a servant leader of our family and loves us through sacrificial love daily. I could not design a better Father than he is. My children are so blessed to have a Father that makes his life choices based on them and what he feels is best for their future. He cares for me and seeks to make me happy for the sake of making me happy. I am so blessed to have him in my life. Thank you, God.

My children are God’s amazing gifts to me. I find myself in complete wonder, sometimes, as I realize these 3 little people are really not mine but God’s…and He has allowed me to share them for just a while. What an honor to be entrusted with God’s creations. Thank you, God.

DD had some minor surgery this week (thus the reason we won’t be having the traditional Thanksgiving festivities) and I have thought so much on being thankful for access to healthcare and the ability to take my children to the doctor when they need it. I am also thankful for the professionals in the medical arts…they are indeed precious. I can’t imagine how painful it must be for parents to need to access care for their children and not have that. Thank you, God.

I am thankful for a home, and enough provisions for my family. Thank you, God.

I am thankful for a Church that boldly proclaims the name of God and strives to spread light in this world. Thank you, God.

I am thankful that my children are able to attend a school that teaches God’s precious Word. I am thankful for teachers that help my DH and I build strong Christian leaders for the future. Thank you, God.

I am thankful for my Country and the brave men and women who have fought for my freedom. Thank you, God.

I am thankful for friends, both old and new, that have taught me so much. Thank you, God.

This list could go on and on but mostly I hope we can step back from day to day stresses and drink in all the blessings that God bestows.

“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful…singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God…giving thanks through Him to God the Father.”
Colossians 3:15-17


Monday, November 20, 2006

Boo Mama's at it again!


Boo Mama, blogger of note, is at it again and planning a rip, roaring Christmas home tour http://boomama.blogspot.com/2006/11/christmas-music-in-walmart-reminded-me.html Her original Bloggy Home Tour was really fun so this one should be a blast! I hope you will all join in the fun.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Christmas can't wait!

I have to admit, I am starting to decorate this weekend. My DD is having some minor surgery that will put her out of commission (thanks to some pain medication) for a few days next week so she is going to put up her tree tomorrow. She is afraid she won't feel up to it next week when we traditionally attempt to get up a tree a day at our house. She no longer desires for me to put her tree up and prefers to do it herself. She does a lovely job. The challenge for her this year is to get the tree positioned correctly as she has rearranged her bedroom furniture and the spot for the tree has shifted a bit. I will also atempt to get my oldest DS's tree this weekend as well....IF he gets his room cleaned up.

I decorate through the entire house. We will have 7 trees this year...which is not many compared with DH's Aunt. We went to a party at her house last weekend and she had 15 trees already up and decorated. She loves to entertain and will continue to decorate until the 1st of December or so.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Long, lost friends!

Last Saturday I had the greatest treat!

I was able to spend a 3-hour breakfast (literally 3 hours!) with a long, lost friend. My dear friend, Laura, and I went to high school together, were on the Cheerleading squad, waited tables together, and doubled dated, not to mention spent lots of nights up late talking over the ups and downs of our teen lives. Some how, though, 20 years ago we just lost touch and drifted apart. You can’t imagine how excited I was to get an email from her via Classmates.com. It was even more amazing to realize that even though I have moved all over in the course of the last 20 years, she and I live on ½ hour apart. She has 3 children – I have 3 children…both of us with 2 boys and 1 girl. Our girls are the same age and they are both Cheerleaders (at different schools). Her husband works about a mile from where mine works. It feels like a parallel universe in so many ways.

I was blessed by the time that she and I spent and hope it is just the 1st of many wonderful times and I can’t wait for our families to meet. She knows my dear husband as he was the boyfriend I had back in high school but I am excited to meet her husband soon!

Oh, and she looks just like she did in high school --- THAT just isn’t fair! LOL

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I hope you VOTED!


Today is Election Day in the United States of America!

What a glorious Blessing and privilege to be able to do that freely, without fear. I was accompanied to the poll by my 3 precious children. They definitely see the excitement and paid quite a lot of attention to the whole process. I could tell my daughter (who is 15) paid more attention this time, as I think she is thinking ahead when she will be allowed to participate in three short years. We talked about how there are people in this world that can’t really even understand the concept of being able to Vote and have a say in who their leaders are. Can you imagine? I honestly can’t.

So many Thanks and prayers go up for the brave men and women who fought and those who died doing so, just so that I could have that privilege.

Make sure you vote…it is not a gift given lightly.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Does Santa only visit good boys and girls?


I usually try to wait until November before I pull out the Christmas music, but yesterday – October 31st – I gave in. On the way to dropping children off at school I pulled out the Burl Ives Christmas CD and popped it in. It was just what I needed! http://www.amazon.com/Very-Best-Burl-Ives-Christmas/dp/B00000JQMD (you can go to this site and listen to individual tracks if you are so inclined). I love Christmas and Christmas music.

Listening to “Santa Claus is coming to Town”, though, brought out some questions from DS#2 (who is 5). He asked about Santa bringing cold. It took me just a minute to determine he was asking about coal not cold. So, in my Motherly Authority I gave him the low down on Santa and his tendency to bring presents to good boys and girls.

DS#2 then asked about what pouting meant (remember he is listening the song as we are talking) and then clarified what I had told him about good boys and girls and the whole you “better not cry, you better not pout, etc.” I explained pouting and confirmed his understanding of our deep philosophical discussion. Silence from the backseat….which generally means something in the form of a grand question or proclamation is forth coming…DS#2 states, “Well, he brought me stuff last year”.

Now, where is my November/December leverage?????

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Autumn in North Georgia




For those of you who haven't ever visited our North Georgia mountains this is what we are seeing this year. Our color is just lovely. These photos were taken about a week ago and since the color has just intensified.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

It's begining to look a lot like........

...Autumn....every where you go.......I love to decorate for Fall. Little touches through out the house just give me a warm, homey feeling.



This is one of my favorite pieces; not an original but one of my favorites, none the less. It sits in front of the fireplace in the family-room.

Field trip to the Pumpkin Farm


Though the Autumn breeze had chilled us the children's laughter kept us warm.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Birthday Princess


I couldn't add a photo to the Birthday post so I wanted to add it here!

Birthday Princess and Daughter of the King!

Do you have a day in your life when you know beyond a shadow of a doubt God took you gently by the shoulders and looked you right in the face and affirmed in flesh and blood that He was the Great Creator? That happened to me 15 years ago, today.

15 years ago, my DH and I were in the hospital having our first child. She arrived on her due date (good girl!). Not only was that my daughter’s birth day it was also a God day for me. When I looked into the face of that amazing little person I was so awe struck with creation and the Creator. I can not understand how anyone can hold their child in their arms and not know there is a God…there has to be…I am just not that good.

Becoming a Mother has been one of the greatest gifts I have ever been given. I have always felt that my children are not really mine, just on loan to me from God. I am so thankful for every single day I have been able to share with them.

My daughter was a message from God to me. She was the fork in the road where I decided I wanted to be a better person and having her gave me the confidence to believe that it could be. It was a moment in time when I fell in love with not just that precious baby but also with my dear husband in a way I could never have anticipated. God showed me what love was supposed to be that day. With the birth of my daughter, God took a couple and forged a family.

She is beautiful, smart, talented and so very funny. DH and I really love spending time with her and I hope that never changes. This morning we had a special breakfast out and her grandparents joined us and presented her with that coveted gift that teen-agers far and wide seek…the keys to her 1st car. It is a bit overwhelming to think we have come to that milestone…even though she still has a year to wait until she has her driver’s license. Sometimes I just don’t feel prepared (or old enough!) but I look forward with a mix of sadness (at her passing childhood) and excitement over the possibilities that God has for her life. I am thrilled to have the chance to share them.

Happy Birthday, dear sweet angel-pie!

“They shall not labor in vain, nor bring forth children
for trouble; for they shall be the descendants of the
blessed of the Lord and their offspring with them.”
Isaiah 65:23

200,000 Baby!



For those of you following my car saga...guess what? Yep! 200,000 this morning! WhooHoo! I do love my car. Hopefully in a year or so I can update you with a 234,567 reading!

Friday, September 29, 2006

Odometer reading...



I was in the car (where I tend to spend most of my time) and looked down and noticed my odometer reading....198765! Yes, that would be 198,785 -- my car is a really great car and I can't wait to actually turn over the soon to arrive 200,000 but I thought 198765 was kinda cool.
Happy Friday, all!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Fall for Mrs. G

Old First Church, Bennington, Vermont established 1762
Current Sanctuary shown above completed 1805 and still holds services.

My dear friend, Mrs. G over at: http://lifeatnumber17.blogspot.com/ has a lust in her heart for Autumn. The kind of Autumn not generally found in the deep south. She longs for the Autumns I experienced while living in NY...the kind where you can wear wool and layers and look oh, so L.L. Bean (comfortably).

When we lived in NY one of my favorite weekend haunts was Bennington, VT. Also, the home to Bennington Pottery http://www.benningtonpotters.com/potters-yard.html ; and some dandy shopping, though not quite as dandy as in Manchester, VT http://www.manchesterdesigneroutlets.com/.
Well, Dear Mrs. G here is some Fall in Photo for YOU!

Autumn colors are creeping in....

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Blinded by the Light at the end of the Tunnel!

Oh my, oh my it is almost done! My horrid and completely mind numbing (or maybe the problem is that my mind is already numb) Math Class is almost over. Torture of torture...what beasts of the Math Department created this class?

Those of you who have been reading my journal for a bit know I am a "non-traditional" student and this term have been taking a Math class (college algebra/statistics and a bit of finance thrown in for fun) and it hasn't been pretty. I have whined, cried, yelled and shown many other less than flattering behaviors while attempting to master this class. My DH now says he understand why DS#2 acts like he does! Wha? Is that helpful??? I think not!

Anyway, my Final (comprehensive -- of course...lest we forget the vast uses for matrix applications) is this weekend. I have it figured out...I only need to make a 66 to get a B in the class. Isn't it amazing that I have the math skills to figure out precisely what the least amount I can score on the final and get a B but can't figure out the class? Something is so wrong with THAT!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

September 11th

Written in DS#2’s baby book:

Where were you? Between 8:45 and 9:03…we (dh, ds#2 and myself) were standing outside taking photos to remember how happy we were…little did we know how much our world was changing. Our lives changed along with the world.

Tuesday, September 11, 2001 was a beautiful day. It was warm and the sky was as blue and clear as I can remember. DH and I were excited to be taking DS#2 to his first Doctors appointment that morning.

As we readied ourselves for the trip to the Dr., the morning news had a breaking story about a plane hitting one of the World Trade Center Twin Towers in NYC. We watched the photographs being telecast in awe and wonder at such a freak accident.

Before leaving for the Dr.’s office we took Baby outside on the front stoop to take some photos of him. He was so tiny and perfect. I felt so happy and good. All was right with the world.

Upon entering the examination room our Pediatrician walked in with tears in her eyes and said, “They have bombed the Pentagon!” We were in shock, and then learned that the plane we had seen hit the World Trade Center Tower wasn’t an accident and there had been a second plane to hit the other tower. In a few short minutes 3 planes became hurling, death machines for thousands of people. There was even more sadness to come as another plane was crashed in Pennsylvania as part of the same attack.

Our world was under attack. After leaving the Dr.s office I rode in back with my new baby and cried. Fear was there…fear for our country, our way of life, my new baby, my sweet other children…fear of the unknown. We had no idea where these attacks had come from or where they would hit next. There was fear and anxiety on what we should do next to prepare for what ever terrible turn came. DD and DS#1 were in school and we wondered if we should go in and get them from school.

The next few hours held little comfort as we watching in horror as the two landmarks of the western world fell with 1000s of people trapped inside. I was so scared and all we could do was pray.

It was the day that the world stopped turning…a day when we all stopped and stood still.


Little did I know that a year later I would find myself holding my precious 1 year old and commemorating the 9-11 attacks in our new home in NY. It was a surreal experience and yes, I took pictures. It was as if I wanted the photos to prove that this attack didn’t stop us or our great Nation. It may seem odd that I included the horrors of the 9-11 attacks in DS#2’s baby book but I need for my children never to forget and know that the world changed for them…that day.

Our church showed this preview for a documentary on the Crosses that rose from the 9-11 rubble and it was a wonderful reminder that God is right there and right here...in the center of it all. He knows, He remembers. Please take the 9 minutes to watch this and see His signs of hope...http://www.worshiphousemedia.com/index.cfm?hndl=details&tab=MM&id=5536


God Bless the U.S.A.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

5 years ago....

Five years ago something amazing happened. God blessed us with the arrival of a 2nd DS. He was the missing piece of the puzzle we didn't even know was missing...thankfully God did.

Today my little baby turns 5. I don't think I have ever seen anyone so excited about a birthday; for days that is all he has talked about. FIVE is a big thing, ya know!

DS2 is just an amazement to me. Maybe that is because I have always known he was the last, maybe it was because his older siblings (5 and 10 years older) have shown me how fast this time of childhood goes; maybe it was because I always felt I missed so much with his older brother because of the months I spent in a bleak existence resulting from a severe case of post pardum depression; maybe it was because on the night he was born he stared up at me for hours as I sang "Open the Eyes of my Heart, Lord" to him (we still do that); maybe it is because he was in my arms as the horror of the 9-11 attacks unfolded and I cried, wondering what kind of world he had been born into. Or maybe, I just love him for his true green eyes!

He is a character X2. He always keeps me on my toes and thinks in ways I can never anticipate. I love this little boy.

I took cupcakes to his preschool today as part of his birthday celebration. I cried as I left. It was the last time I would bring cupcakes to preschool for a birthday...next year he will be in "big school". Of course, I will still bring goodies for his birthday there but it is somehow different. I am so happy for him and his accomplishments but my heart aches knowing he is one day closer to adulthood.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Mountain Echo

Last weekend we headed to the mountains for a sort of long weekend. We rented a cabin at Vogel State Park.
As we were checking in DH actually ran into a dear friend that we had lost touch with several years ago. She and I were in the same sorority in college and went through rush together and were part of the same pledge class so we were quite close all those years ago. It was so exciting to see her after all these years! She and her DH are expected a baby as well. They were staying there for the weekend celebrating their anniversary. Isn't it a small world? We haven't seen each other in at least 14 years! It was fun to catch up and get to know her DH as well over dinner at "our" cabin on Saturday night.

I enjoyed this weekend so much as there was not TV or computer in sight

The children swam, fished, played in the creek. We spent time playing board games and reading.

It was perfect.

40...and still very hot!

Well, I can say it...I have kissed a 40 year old man! Who would have ever dreamed it? Actually my handsome husband turned 40 a couple of weeks ago. We have celebrated 21 of his birthdays together...I am so thankful that he is in my life. It is such a thrill that after all these years he can still kiss me and it goes all the way down to my toes. As I am trying to spend more time in real life and making memories rather than just writing about them I didn't "blog" his birthday in a very timely manner. Happy Birthday, baby!
The children and I hosted a cake fest after he got home from work to properly sugar us all up. Truelove Celebrations (a local bakery) made his to die for cake...Devils Food w/ Chocolate Icing and Chocolate glaze on top. The man really likes chocolate!!! Have you ever noticed how excited children get about their parents birthdays? It is an excitment that is honest and pure and totally focused on someone else.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Humbled Awe

Yesterday DH and I paid a visit to the funeral home. It was for a 9 year old boy. His name was Bryan. His Dad works with my DH. This little boy had battled Cystic Fibrosis for his 9 years on this earth. He was the recipient of a lung transplant about 18 months ago. In the last 18 months of his life he had been free of the oxygen that had been his constant companion up until that point.

His mother is a scrap booker. She is an artist of the highest calling. I feel sure it has served as a sort of therapy for her over the years. At the funeral home there was a table with some of her scrapbooks. She had written Bryan’s story…all the highs and lows, through these books with pictures, mementoes and her words. One album even contained a copy of the letter she wrote to the donor family after Bryan’s transplant. There were pages and pages of photos of the family and Bryan on all kinds of adventures. There were words that recorded the memories. I stood and looked through them, getting to know a little boy that I would actually never “know”. What was so clear through this family's stories is that they seized the day….every moment, every hug, every smile, every laugh.

I was humbled by the strength of this family. I was awed by their very ability to get through the day. There was a quiet resolve and a joy that flowed through the soul of this family, even in the absence of happiness. I know that has to come from a deep abiding faith…a gift that God gives.

This experience just humbled me and placed my own family and my own “mothering” on my heart. I take for granted the grace and mercy I have been given. We have to hug while we can. We have love while we can. I need to be less busy and more fun. I need to take more pictures. I need to make more memories. I need to remember that these babies of mine are actually God's first and I should take care to treat them as such.

Today is a gift from God….what are you going to do with it?

Friday, August 11, 2006

Joy




Yesterday I had the high honor of taking off with my youngest son, now that the older 2 are back in school, and heading to up to a lake in the mountains for a day of swimming and play. Amazingly, the lake was abandoned (I suppose because of school being back in session) so DS and I had the great pleasure of having the beach area completely to ourselves.

It was a glorious summer day…clear blue skies with fluffy white clouds floating by on occasion, a calm lake with water just the perfect temperature to keep your skin comfortable under the golden sun. It was wonderful. We swam, danced in the water, watched the butterflies gathering on the sand for a drink, sang lots of songs and built sand walls (sorry, he just wasn’t into castles but preferred walls).

As I sat on the beach and played with my little man I just enjoyed every simple, plain moment of it. It was an afternoon that reminded me just how much joy is in the journey. I am so blessed to be called, “Mommy”. I love being a Wife and Mother. Unfortunately, I forget that when I feel rushed, tired and over-extended; when the world comes calling, and stealing the quiet from my life, I forget that. I am going to try to do better to remember that always, every day.



"Pour out your heart like water
before the face of the Lord.
Lift your hands toward Him for the
life of your young children."
Lamentations 2:19

Monday, August 07, 2006

1st Days and Teen-Age ways

I thought I would update everyone on DD's 1st day of high school. Honestly, I think I was hoping for a, "Mommy, I would like to go back to *** for high school" when I picked her up!

When I pulled up to the school Friday afternoon (the longest day ever!) DD hopped in the car -- as only a teen-aged girl can -- and proclaimed, "THAT is the coolest place ever!" She had a wonderful 1st day of school. I don't think I ever had a day at school as good as the one she had. Friday night we spent several hours discecting everything she experienced (or at least the ones she shared with me!). I am glad she was happy.

Saturday found us, (along with at least half the population of 3 counties), converging on the "big mall" AKA. Mall of GA http://www.simon.com/mall/default.aspx?ID=208 for some retail therapy and to take advantage of our state's Sales Tax Free weekend. DD's is a teen-aged girl and my experience has been that teen girls like to shop! We had a fun day getting school supplies, clothes and had a nice long girls lunch at Ruby's in the Mall. We also visited a great scrapbooking shop, Archivers http://www.archiversonline.com so DD could get some cool papers to decorate her new binders with! Of course, a stop at Ultahttp://www.ulta.com was needed to finish off our day...oh, and a drive through Krispy Kreme http://www.krispykreme.com (the boys deserved a reward for all our hours away shopping!).

Thanks to everyone for the prayers and good thoughts (and especially for letting me whine)! God is good and I am still praying that He is with her and she can always remember "Whose she is".

Friday, August 04, 2006

1st Day of High School



This is a photo of my DD on her first day of preschool...12 years ago. She was on her way up the side-walk with "Mama Bear" in her arms and her pink back pack strapped on. Funny, she wore pink today to her 1st day of high school...only it was a hot pink polo and khaki burmuda shorts. We prayed on the way to school and I even drove by the school and prayed a little more after my shopping with the boys. It is 2-1/2 hours until I pick her up. I can't wait to hear how the day went. Thanks to all of you who have lifted us up in prayer and sent notes of encouragement.

"I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety."

Psalm 4:8

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Where do the years go?

This week has been one of firsts and a week full of Mommy Meloncoly. My dd starts high school tomorrow. I would like to say I am excited and thrilled like she is, but I would be lying. I am terrified, scared and sad. She is my first born and my only baby girl. My DH and I have spent her entire life trying to shelter her and keep her safe. Now, she wants to go over to that big High School and leave the cloistered life she has led up until this point. I have known for months that this was coming. It is here and I just keep tearing up about it. What on earth will I do when she goes off to college?

I keep thinking about her first day of preschool. She was 2 months shy of turning 3 and she seemed so grown up. I cried that day...she didn't. She even thought I should drop her off on the side walk and she would go in by herself. She wore the cutest Osh Kosh pink/white striped jumper and little, tiny white Keds sneakers. She insisted on wearing her pink heart shaped watch (even though she couldn't tell time) and took "Mama Bear" along with her. We had even found a pink Hello Kitty Backpack that had a Spottie Dottie on the back that squeaked if you pressed it; inside that pink backpack she took along a notebook with pink paper printed with ballet slippers.

I left Fort Hill Preschool and felt lost. She had been my constant companion for almost 3 years. I can't help but wonder how will feel tomorrow. I have been informed, in no uncertain terms, that I will NOT be allowed to take my traditional 1st Day of School photos and I am to just drop her off at the door. It will be different than that 1st Day of Preschool, as I will have 2 little boys in the backseat and we will head off to buy school supplies for their 1st Day of School next week.

Many hours have been spent in prayer this week. My sweet baby girl has been in the sheltered environment of our beloved private school and now we are entereing uncharted territory with the public school. I keep going over and over the fact that I know she has a good foundation and she loves God and seeks Him for her life. I also keep trying to remember verses to comfort me...
"He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abid under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, "He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust." Psalm 91:1-2
I know there are lots of Moms out there who will roll their eyes at my tears and drama and tell me in that knowing way, "Just you wait, it gets worse." But, for me, today feels really hard.

Monday, July 31, 2006

OUCHIE!!!


Yesterday, I had a not very positive run-in with a not very pleasant Yellow Jacket. For those of you who are not familiar with this lovely addition to the open spaces of the Southland let me tell you how blessed you are! In general during the spring and summer they are relatively harmless and not aggressive. As fall approaches, this changes, and they become like little monsters on crack with a high level of aggression.

Last evening as I was walking into my parent’s home and attempting to herd my children in without letting them get stung by this insidious creature I got strung!!! The little bugger popped me right in the center of my forehead. OUCHIE!!! There isn’t a lot of padding in that area and a sting right there was quite painful. DH immediately swung into action and got me Benadryl (sp) so the swelling was very little last night.

This morning my forehead feels a bit better but my left eye is puffy and swollen...a really good look for me. Needless to say, I won't be leaving the house today!

Friday, July 28, 2006

BooMama's Bloggy Home Tour, Part I

Another Blogger of note, http://boomama.blogspot.com/, has herself a bloggy home tour going on and I thought I would jump in an invite y'all into my little home.

Come on in, ya'll!

Keep scrolling down for the rest of the tour!

BooMama's Bloggy Home Tour, Part II

This is our family room where all the action takes place! The children are generally in residence along with a plethora of toys. I am struggling with the color of the family room these days (see post below) and want to have it painted something bolder!

Family Room view from kitchen

This is our formal living room where the blog happens. You can see my computer armoire on the right side (this view is from the family room). My plan for this room is go get rid of the sofa and chair and replace them with a couple of comfy leather club chairs/ottoman and some nice book shelves. The room has 4 windows and doors on the other 2 wall so large pieces don't work in there. The computer armoire is actually sitting at an angle and partially in front of a window!


Breakfast area where we eat most of our meals, do crafts, school work and lots of other activities.

Kitchen! My plans here include changing out the appliances to black...one day. Can I fix you a glass of sweet tea or cup of coffee while you are here?

This is our formal dining room. We enjoy using it even on "non-holidays".

I love houses and especially those that become homes. Thanks for stopping by and spending some time in the place God has blessed for us. This is a link about a post I did some months ago concerning my "house love" Southern Somedays: Homes

"He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almight."

Psalm 91:1 (NIV)