Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Dashing Through The Snow....

..well kind of!

The other weekend we made the trip out to White Sands National Monument.  It's one of the world's largest gypsum sand dunes.   Corey was a little freaked out when we got there....it looks crazily similar to huge plowed through snow drifts and he thought that he'd need a coat, not just a t-shirt lol!

Here's just a handful of pics, not much to say about them just lots and lots of fun (and wow, does that stuff get Everywhere!  Shoes, pants pockets...I'm still sweeping it up)

 The sunsets here are so beautiful...my camera is way above my abilities, but every day I am constently reminded how lucky we are to live in such beauty!

Grandma and Granpa are driving out for a visit this weekend, please pray for safe travels for them and that their stay will be amazing (the boys are about to jump out of their skin...the major count down has begun!)   Not sure how much I'll be able to snag Starbuck's internet...or if blogger will even let me on (has anyone else had issues?!?).

Thanks for being patient with me....and if you've emailed and I haven't responded I'm very sorry...no internet at the house and Jim's smart phone from IL is as slow as a rotary phone ;)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

I'm Here...I'm Here!

What a wild and crazy trip this has been!!!!

We've made it.....no internet, computer issues, and absolutely no time to do things other than clean, unpack, and clean!

Arrived the day before Thanksgiving.  Full trailer to unpack, no table, no chairs, no beds....very thankful for walmart close by lol.

We were so blessed by a friend that I had met on facebook whose family brought us a full blown Thanksgiving meal...so humbled and overwhelmed how people could reach out like that to total strangers!!!!!

It didn't take us long to make a trip to "our" mountains.....
I don't know that this flatlander will ever get used to this sight!   Just amazing!!!!
3 mile hike didn't faze this guy at all!

Number 2 on the other hand is not really an outdoors man ;)  Jim carried him the last 1/4 mile...up the mountain!  We begged and bribed...milkshakes, batteries for the wii, anything to get this kid up there.  Once we turned back from the springs and it was all down hill, he took off like a shot!   (1.5 hrs up, 20 min to get back down lol)
This looks like a tiny hill, but trust me...it's not ;)   So proud of them for making it up and back on their first mountain adventure!
I'll try to be more diligent at sneaking away to starbucks until we can get the whole internet deal figured out!

Monday, November 12, 2012

It's the Final Countdown!

A Quick Recap:
-Riley turned 9, Capt. America Bday, Amazing Cake (which I have yet to download pics off my camera for..bummer)

-Anniversary, 14 years...kids spent the weekend with gparents and we packed and cleaned and tossed out worthless stuff.

-Halloween, kids were whatever they could find in their rooms...my mom made Corey's dream party come true..candy candy candy...again pics still on my camera...or not, I can't remember!

-Found a house!!!!  Yay!






-Jim finally put plywood into the hutch that I painted uh 5 million years ago so that our clothes wouldn't fall out during the move!


-Something dead and horrible under mudroom freezer (thank you big strong hubby for taking care of that this morning)


-Pinterest cleaning wins!!!!  almost asphyxiated myself, but the shower is Amazing!  Vinegar and Dawn who knew?  Cleaned the washer before we sold it...Disgusting City!  How does something that is supposed to clean our clothes get so nasty?!?  I run bleach cycles all of the time...but this was super fantastic brand spankin new clean!  1qt bleach in a hot cycle, let sit for 1 hr and then run through longest setting.  1qt vinegar, hot cycle, let sit for 1 hr and then run through longest setting.  While the vinegar is sitting, dip cloth into the basin and clean off all the grime around the lid and all up in the washers business (aka, the little tucked up region where the thingamabob spins....aka..pit of hell, nasty catcher)

-The clock is ticking and I need to shut down the computer and pack some boxes...Trailer is getting loaded on Thursday...

-hope to leave bright and early on Saturday and make it to the new house by Monday....I'll be sure to post once we get internet (or maybe I'll just sneak over to our neighborhood Starbucks..yep, Neighborhood Starbucks!!!  God is so Good!)

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Halloween, the eve of All Saints Day always seems to overshadow that today is also Reformation Day.

Martin Luther, with his trusty hammer and nails, did more than nail a paper to a door.  

I wonder what he'd say today about the state of the church?

Would he tweet it?


Maybe he'd make a youtube vid that would go viral?

I have a feeling that he'd say we missed the point....

We've weighed ourselves down with the burdens of our masochistic rules and regulations....denominationalized every aspect of faith to try and make ourselves the superior church (notice superior, not righteous).

We kneel, we give, we punch our cards for perfect attendance, we pray (when we pass a cop on the highway).  I'm not even talking about other religions who aim to be good enough, pray certain times of the day....all trying to pave their way...

When is it enough?

Did we forget that we can't earn grace?

News Flash, you'll never be good enough!

It came to me this afternoon:   we struggle and toil to make ourselves good enough to be called His children....when all along, He's been here...waiting..arms wide open...calling us home!

Isaiah 65, The Message 

I kept saying, 'I'm here, I'm right here'
to a nation that ignored me.
I reached out day after day 
to a people who turned their backs on me,
People who make wrong turns,
who insist on doing things their own way.
They get on my nerves,
are rude to my face day after day,
Make up their own kitchen religion,
a potluck religious stew.

I know that this isn't the same context, but if the shoe fits....

It isn't about the numbers or the programs.

It isn't about the brass plaques memorializing every possible thing.

It's about Love!

God's absolute, chain breaking, earth shattering, paradigm shifting Love.

Not for the righteous....but for us all while we were still caught up in our sin.

What does he want in return?  What need does God have that he cannot fill himself?


God wants nothing in return for this gift of grace other than for us to love him in return.   

To love him with a reckless abandon.   

To love him with everything we have...every fiber of our being, with all of our hearts and minds.

It's all about Love, plain and simple....

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Peace Out


Peace that surpasses all understanding....aka...crazy peace...

Peace has not been the word of the day at our house lately. 

The whole housing deal--I am not an anxious person, but so much rides on this decision...

Where are we called?

To whom are we called to?

Is it possible to serve this amazing purpose and not destroy our kids in the process?

Do we shoot for the ubber neighborhoods?  We really don't fit that model...

Reclamation district?  Urban renewal...sure, it would be cool...but do we fit there either?

I have looked at so many houses....some were quite promising...but none gave me peace.

During my prayer time last week I read about Jesus sending out his disciples.  He told them that when they stopped at a house, let your peace come upon it.  (The Amplified version described it as Freedom from Distress)   If your peace returns to you then move on to the next house.

Imagine it like a peace sonar.   Pinging peace as you go---if it returns, you're not free from distress...move on.




Friday night I was up until 4 a.m. researching a neighborhood.   4 a.m.   Peace?  Duh, go to bed Shelly.

It is really nerve wracking searching for a home so far away.   

(suck it up buttercup, people do it all the time...in far worse situations!)

Saturday, our friends emailed about a house they saw listed locally.  Called and talked to the owner.  


Our friends drove by and took pictures.


The neighborhood is not "trendy", it's good....steady....evidence of kids in neighboring houses.  Sunday our friends went through the house with the landlord.


My perfect ideal number of bedrooms, plus more.


God is good.  So we sign on to rent a house that we've never stepped foot in.


No panic, no searching crime rates/ school ratings/ google maps-ing the area.


Peace that goes beyond the logical.

We are going to be ok.   God does have a plan and he will take care of our needs--He knows the desires of our hearts.  We just have to wait and trust. He is a Good Daddy, one who delights in taking care of his children!


It is not up to us.  It is not about us.  It is all about HIM!


(and now that I am all peaced out, I reeeeeealllllly need to go pack up some more stuff!)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Just Dropping By

This poor neglected blog...almost as neglected as my kids lol!

It's a rainy, dreary day here in the midwest.  It's COLD today.  My heart needs desert temps...and sunshine!  Lots and Lots of sunshine!

We're working on finding a house.  So far ehhh.  Found one that was amazing, but God has ways of working things out..at the last minute, the owner decided to try and sell it instead of rent.  Oh well, nothing lost and there will be other houses.  God doesn't shut a door without another in mind.  

Just have to trust.

Hi, my name is Shelly and I have trust issues...

I was reading in Mark yesterday.  (I find myself being anxious the closer we get to moving..not that I'm not excited about this..it's just out of my comfort zone, but I'd rather be out of my box and in the will of God than comfy and mediocre.)

So anyway, Mark...the first verse that I jumped out and smacked me between the eyes was Mark 5:36---Do Not Be Afraid, Just Believe.   Just Believe..stop thinking with your "what if's" and your perceived truth, Just Believe that God is who he says that he is and his promises are true.

Later on in Mark, Jesus gets annoyed with his disciples (well, at least in my head he sounds annoyed..)   After seeing him do 2 miracles with loaves of bread, the disciples were still worried that on their boat trip they'd run out.   Seriously, he fed thousands of people with 5 loaves of bread and had baskets and baskets of leftovers....

Jesus asks them--Why are you still worried about bread?  Do you still not understand?  How many baskets were leftover when I fed 5,000? 

 (at this point, I'm picturing the disciples looking a lot like my kids when I get after them..heads down, hands in pockets, kicking at the dirt...)   12 baskets...

And how many were leftover when I fed the 4,000?  Do you still not get it?

 ....this is the same Jesus who just walked out on water..who calmed the wind!  

Yet still, they are worried about taking care of their day to day basic needs.

They were still trying to grab hold and control things.   


Such stumbling block for human nature.  For my nature.  I like to be in control.  I like to know all of my options and every step of the plan...to read and reread the instructions just in case I miss a bolt.   

Control and Trust can never be besties.

Control has to be cut off at the knees in order for Trust to grow.

Lord- I believe that you are the God of the miraculous and the ordinary.  You spin the planets in orbit and take care of the sparrow and the flowers of the field, how much more will you take care of your children.  Your ways are perfect, your vision for my life cannot be comprehended...even when I can't see, I trust in your plan.  And when I am filled with anxiety because things aren't working as I think they should, I will praise you for protecting me from things that I can not see just yet!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Oh My..Not Nine!

This little guy somehow turned 9 today....
 He believes that he can do anything....Olympic swimmer-no problem.....Major Rockstar-why not...Pro Skateboarder-you betchya!
 Somedays, a 'tude the size of Texas...
But no matter what, we've got ourselves one awesome little guys here!

Happy Birthday Riley--may your year be filled with the new adventures, many successes, and just enough trouble to make it interesting ;)

Love you!!!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

It's All Gonna Be Ok

 I've been hanging on by a thread this week...and this song seems to be the one thing that keeps me from free falling.

If your eye is on the sparrow then your heart is on me...

Had a panic attack today in the car.  Just a little over whelmed.  Not like crazy, call the whambulance and send her to the padded room.  Just Tired. Things are moving ahead, great things that are such a dream, but scary as crap when they're looming in the near future!

Decided that if my heart was going to race out of control, then I might as well be doing something that would actually benefit me...pit stop at the gym, my key fob was dusty..bad gym goer, bad, bad, bad.

Anyway, this song was on repeat for the hour I was there...running, praising, releasing...

It's all gonna be ok, It's all gonna be ok...over and over and over...

Because God takes care of the sparrow, so how much more will he take care of me?

It's all gonna be ok, Shelly.

Then I went to my little stretching `corner and plopped my foot up on a stool so that my hamstring wouldn't kill me later, only to find a single little feather...

See...It's all gonna be ok, Shelly.

Gotta love it when your Daddy sends you little love notes ;)

If you're looking for some great workout/warrior prayer/praise music, Jake Hamilton puts out some absolutely anointed stuff!!!  It's pretty rare that he's not playing somewhere in our house....and man, in concert..let's just say there's no way not to be swept away in the spirit!

Friday, September 7, 2012

I've Had ALL That I Can Take..

...And I Can't Take ANY MORE!

I've been so quiet lately...

Still waiting, things are definitely moving forward, but no dates or plans or whatever...just waiting patiently on God's timing.    It's frustrating for me, it's frustrating for everyone who keeps asking what's the deal.  Well, I don't know...no, I do know...God working things out (in us and ordaining our steps for this journey).   Not the firm sunshiney answer that people like to hear.

Another reason that I've been quiet is that it's election year   

I'm trying really hard to keep my mouth shut because things are starting to get on my last nerve....and Not in the way that you think!

I dread looking at my blog feeds, facebook is just one negative repost after another.   I have so many things to say, but I don't know if I can tactfully voice them...

So here's the deal--

---Whatever happened to being known as followers of Christ by the love we share?

The absolute Hate that is being spewed back and forth is shameful!  

Do you think that cutting repost or shared picture digging our leaders glorifies Christ?  Do you think he's laughing along with you or ready to give you a high five?

No, I'm pretty sure that he's shaking his head because, again, we've missed the point....all the while the devil is laughing his burning butt cheeks off!

If you want to change someone's life, love them first.  Really, really love them...with the love of Christ!

--Was our current president's election some cosmic mistake?  Did God turn his head, when really he felt that someone else would be better? 

If we truly believe the Word of God, can we then discount Romans 13?

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established.  The authorities that exist have been established by God.  Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgement on themselves.

This was written while the Jews were under Rome's control.   They.Were.SLAVES.  There was no "I'm so mad that this legislation passed"..there was you cross me and you die, have a nice day.

Should we then not be involved in politics?  No, not saying that....but seriously, people...We have Lost Our Freakin Minds!  

One last verse and then I'll jump off this soap box....I'm not judging anyone, it's your right to believe what you believe...just, check your tone....are you glorifying?...are you loving?...are you building up or tearing down?   No one loves a hater, just sayin'.

Look at how God describes the Messiah, he didn't send a tyrant...

Isaiah 42: 1-4

"Take a good look at my servant,
   I'm backing him to the hilt.
He's the one I chose,
   and I couldn't be more pleased with him.
I bathed him with my Spirit, my life.
   He'll set everything right among the nations.
He won't call attention to what he does
   with loud speeches and gaudy parades.
He won't brush aside the bruised and the hurt
and he won't disregard the small and the insignificant,
   but he'll steadily and firmly set things right.
He won't tire out or quit.  He won't be stopped
   until he's finished his work--to set things right on earth.
Far-flung ocean islands
   wait expectantly for his teaching."

 Jesus is not a card carrying member of a political party....and News flash...If we as a church actually got up off our butts and practiced what we preached, there'd be a lot less of the things that we are fighting over!  Wouldn't that be something!  Don't worry orphans and widows, homeless, prisoners, and prostitutes---We're here to help---Jesus loves you and so do we!

Ok, I'm done!  I think that I need to go buy a Coke and find someone to hold hands with and sing   ;)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Depth Perception

(you'll have to excuse my old cell phone photo...grainy and blah...tried to fix it 100x's but it didn't want to save it so whatev)

I've been struggling with timing and patience..and patience..and trusting...

yeah, I guess that I've just been all around struggling ;)

yesterday during my quiet time I came across this thought in my study Bible: 
 sometimes life is like looking at a mountain range---from a distance the peaks look like they almost touch each other, but once you get a closer view you realize that they are really miles apart.

I kind of feel like that.

it seemed like- wow, it's finally happening..and it is...but once we reached the top of our mountain, the next peak wasn't just a quick little hop over.

nope...well crap...

looking out on the horizon, we have a lot of work to do.  yes, we are definitely in a season of green pastures and still waters...but there is harvesting and preparing and growing along the way.  

God promises to make our paths straight and to keep us from stumbling.  So, I walk...I follow the Shepard's leading....I hold tight to the hope in His promises...because He is good..He is true..He is the author of my life...the Redeemer of my soul...my fortress...my strength.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Disconnect Vs. Discontent


pretty much sums up what I'm feeling lately.

so much to do, no motivation to do it, no timelines--just deadlines.

I feel like I'm in a huge tug of war battle.

one side is this feeling of total disconnect:  like I'm uprooted, just waiting to be transplanted into another garden.

the other side is awe of how much God is blessing us and is providing the way (even when it feels like we aren't making steps forward...it's the behind the scenes God stuff that keeps my head above water right now)

not really sure what to say or feel.  I'm going through a quiet stage I guess (and if you know me personally, you're probably laughing at the thought of that....yeah, hahaha)

I'm going to try and be more present in my life this week...no more of this "out of life" experience..I'm here...life doesn't stop just because I'm stressed.

so, I'm giving myself a dose of my own friendly advice:

Suck it up Buttercup!  

time to go give myself a butt kicking at the gym, a little adrenaline dose will do my mind some good :)

Friday, July 20, 2012

Warning Construction Ahead...

the title should say something like Warning Construction in MY Head!

so many words. so many thoughts. so many feelings and stresses and junk. all trying to make their way down my neurons to my fingers. it's like 20 lanes of traffic merging into 1 lane.

maybe it's not my time yet to write out our story...it for sure doesn't have an ending yet and the plot keeps twisting and turning. still the same destination, just not the way I expected it....ever....and it keeps on going.

Paul's journey to Rome keeps coming to mind. he knew that God wanted him to go and preach in Rome, but it wasn't like he just hopped on an airplane and went.....there were all of these twists and curves and God used them to share the gospel to so many people who wouldn't have been touched with out that direction of the journey. it wasn't all cake and tea either....beatings...prison...shipwrecks...snake bites...but all for God's glory.

do you think he ever looked upward and asked "What the Heck?!?"

in May I never would have dreamed that I'd be sitting here typing on this couch, in this house...never...

and yet here I am.

four weeks ago, I thought for sure my silent time would reveal this huge master plan...instead i got Trust Me..Wait on Me...

so again, here I am.

I am learning first hand James 4:

"Today—at the latest, tomorrow—we're off to such and such a city for the year. We're going to start a business and make a lot of money." You don't know the first thing about tomorrow. You're nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing. Instead, make it a habit to say, "If the Master wills it and we're still alive, we'll do this or that."

I've stopped planning. His ways are higher than our ways, His thoughts higher than ours.

we're not in it for the money, we're going because we have been called.

I've stopped worrying about this or that, times and dates mean nothing as long as I'm looking forward and looking upward.

at first little blessings started happening, things just fell into place.

we found a trailer that was under the cost we were looking for (amazing considering everything we saw before that for weeks had been double to triple the price).

Corey got a clean bill of health after his surgery (and thank you Lord that we had insurance..oy vey that was a big bill!)

then, Jim's business that had all but dried up over the past few years started getting calls....first one, then two, then more...lots more...and the phone is still ringing...talk about opening the flood gates of heaven. unexpected income that will give us security in our eventual new start.

so, people inevitably always ask...When are you leaving?

I don't know, we'll know when it's right.

months ago we had prayed that God would use Jim's hands like the widow who Elisha told to gather as many jars as she could to fill with oil. as long as the jobs keep coming, we'll do them.

it's funny because we aren't relying on our own strength or our own talents. God is the one providing this overflow. and when it's his time, it will all fall into place....and I'm good with that.

people like plans, they like dates and security...especially grandmas lol...

sometimes it feels like our reliance on God and lack of plans kind of freaks people out. I have always been the free spirit. Jim on the other hand is a play it by the book, find the depth of the lake before you jump in off the cliff kind of guy. for him to be at peace without everything but the next step figured out is huge..HUGE. and it's right.

for now we're preparing (waiting in expectation)...when God waves the green flag, it's on!

so, it is what it is. eventually there'll be more.

consider this the back cover preview of our story ;)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Young Eagles Take Flight

I promise to give you an update on all of my silent time.  But until I get my words straight, this little picture show will have to do ;)

These too little cuties were offered a flight with the Young Eagles.  Riley was raring to go...Corey was super nervous...
Jamie had done this a few years ago..looking back at Rick's photo album it was '07 (Wow, has he changed!)   There was an open seat in the plane so Jamie got to tag along too.

Here they are going through the preflight check list.  I learned a ton of new stuff!  (like stalling wasn't the engine shutting off, it's when the wings are at an angle where there is not enough air flowing over them to keep it up...who knew?!?)
Away they go!
Bye Mom!
Rick flew them over our house and made a big swing out past Jim's parents' place.  All night I heard nothing but arguing over how "big" certain buildings around town were...Riley would hold his thumb and finger near each other and say it was only this big...Jamie would argue that it was smaller or bigger, get annoyed and say "well,  maybe from you point of view.."

Some how or another, this guy found us ;)  Made my day!  He was on his way to a job a few towns over and decided to swing by and see the boys off!   He's been putting in crazy hours again so I'll take whatever minutes with him that I can get!!!
Before we knew it, they were back...
Exiting like total Rock Stars!

I foresee flight lessons in their distant future (they better get some good after school jobs, that's all I can say!).

After pictures, the boys helped Rick push the plane back into his hanger...can't be all play and no work!
All decked out with pins and certificates....they were pretty stoked by the whole thing!
If you have this available in your area, I would definitely recommend it!!!!  They learned so much and it only fueled their obsession with airplanes!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Knock, Knock, Knockin' On Heaven's Door

Hello Friend!

Wowzers, I'm a horrible blogger lately....just a lot going on that I can't tell yet...a lot still up in the air...a lot of giving up control and letting God work his plan.   

The last one is the hardest!  On one hand, we have the vision, we know what's in store, and we could get there on our own strength (well...we could give it all we got and do it or die trying!).   But on the other hand, we've come this far, through so much pain/growth, that settling for anything other than God's will just doesn't seem worth it!!!

Two of our boys leave tomorrow for a fun filled week of adventure with our church's Kidzlink staff.  And poor, poor Riley has wormed his way into doing a tour of the grandparents' and an aunt and uncle's...don't cry for him Argentina, he'll be just fine!!!

So while they're gone, I've got a lot to do...cleaning, working out (a TON), and I'll probably finagle a way to have some coffee dates here or there ;)

But, the most important thing on the agenda is to really hunker down and seek God....prayers that will open doors, paths, whatever...to really, really go all out and focus on what lies ahead.

I know that you all will probably fall over with shock (especially because of how regularly I've been blogging lately!)...but I'm turning off the ol' computer and tv for the week.  Too many distractions, too many easy ways to shut off from The Here and Now.   

Have a great week, hope to be able to tell you lots when I come back from unplugging and plugging into a bigger and better source!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Laying More Stones

Last year I wrote about Ebenezer Stones....raising stones of remembrance...

Well, here's another one!  

Corey's pathology report came out Benign!

The surgery went well.  Corey was a little nervous on the way into the hospital, but we tried to keep him occupied...while every other kid in out patient surg was screaming their little bloomin heads off!  (first thing we did was put on the headphones and play some of his favorite songs)

Eventually, even the music and games that we brought couldn't contain the little fingers of fear from creeping in.  When in doubt, take a picture...works like a charm!

Jim made fun of me for bringing the camera...he really was kind of annoyed when I pulled it out of camera bag ;)  so, I took a super flattering pic of him.
Really though, best idea ever...he was such a ham!  Posing for the camera with his new sonic stuffed animal and his picture that he drew for the doctor!
Well, maybe not a total fix...still a little nervous...
Ok, now it's a little better ;)   Just needed a little bit of a mama snuggle!
The nurses were so sweet!  Everyone was kind and took their time to really talk To Corey.  They even had these cute little fabric hats that someone had made instead of the paper surgery hair nets.   He still wears this around the house!  
The whole deal took like 20 min!  They ended up taking out the lymph node and sending it to pathology.   Corey woke up great from his anesthesia..which was a huge concern of mine (just another thing to show me that I don't have to be so protective of him..he is a good kid and is getting so big!).  The recovery nurse said that he was so polite!  He thanked everyone over and over..so cute :)   We truly are blessed to have such a support system of friends and family!

So, one more thing to check off the list!  

Glad that we got it done and over with and now we can focus on the next big thing...duhn duhn duhnnnnnnn...

Thursday, June 14, 2012

And...The Neglected Blog Award Goes To.....

Hey there Friends!  

 How have you been?!?  

It's been like one cashew short of a nut house here!

So, let's do a quick recap (and then I promise, I'll try harder to be a better blogger, mkay?) 

A couple of weekend's ago, we had a wild and crazy girls weekend in Madison--hung out with friends that Friday night and then met up with more the next morning for the farmers market :)   Total Awesomesauce!   

So much so, that this is the ONLY pic I have....Amber, darling, I'm going to kidnap Krystal's phone and ransom those photos!!! (or maybe it's best for them not to see the light of day lol)
This week, I celebrated the big 34.   I was having a bit of a hard time with it, I mean...34...how did that happen?!?  But then I got to thinking...would I really want to stay in my 20's?  No, not really!  I kind of like this stage of our life...kids are fairly independent, I'm secure in my relationships and who I am....I think 34 will be a good year for sure!

After going to the dreaded Secretary of State office to renew my license, the boys and I met up with Krystal and her boys to hang at the splash pad/mini putt/skate park.   Perfect place for a mom's birthday?  Sure thing---boys were occupied and happy which means mom can be occupied and happy ;)   Krystal was sweet enough to bake me some birthday cake protein bars too!  Yummy!!!

One quick stop at Sam's Drive In for a dipped cone and I'd say my birthday was complete!  (well, until a couple of hours later when we all stuffed ourselves on pork chops and corn on the cob at my parents!).   Seriously, I LOVE these boys!!!!!  Even the one who won't get his nose out of a book for 2 seconds to take a picture..guess that there's worse problems to have!

In other news, Corey's surgery is tomorrow morning.   I'm feeling much better about it (had a complete freak out last week, but it's all good...or it will be all good!).   Corey on the other hand is a little nervous....I keep trying to think of things to tell him so that he won't be caught off guard...

So far, the worry list is:

Possible I.V. (which in my book isn't a worry...he's had blood drawn recently, should be a piece of cake)

Sleeping/waking up

And my personal fav.....Surgery PJ's...and the possibility of no undies...do they still do that?!?  It really freaks him out lol!

I know that tomorrow will all go fine...it'll be an adventure!  He'll have to take it easy for a couple of days, but we cleaned out the library of Walace and Gromit so he'll be grand ;)

I'll be sure to post how he does tomorrow after we get back!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


This afternoon is Corey's appointment with the pediatric surgeon for the lump on his collar bone.   

I'm a little bit nervous.....ok...A Lot nervous...

This morning when Jim and I had our quiet time, he flipped the Bible open to Acts 2:25...later, I needed a bit more comfort so I grabbed the Bible..and yep, Acts 2:25.   Figuring that there was a reason we kept landing on that page, I dug a little deeper.  

 Peter is quoting Psalm 16, so I turned there...

Psalm 16 is called a miktam of David.  My study guide says that it means to cover, either like a prayer said in silence or a prayer to be covered with protection...I'm standing on the last definition ;)

Psalm 16

Keep me safe, O God, 
for in you I take refuge.

I said to the Lord, "You are my Lord;
apart from you I have no good thing."
As for the saints who are in the land,
they are the glorious ones in whom is all my delight.
The sorrows of those will increase
who run after other gods.
I will not pour out their libations of blood 
or take up their names on my lips.

Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup;
you have made my lot secure.
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
surely I have a delightful inheritance.

I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;
even at night my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me.
Because he is at my right hand, 
I will not be shaken.

Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure,
because you will not abandon me to the grave, 
nor will you let your Holy One see decay.
You have made known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

My strength comes from the Lord--apart from Him I have no good thing--the Lord is always before me, I will not be shaken--my heart is glad, my tongue rejoices, and my body rests secure!

I'll post later what we find out at the doctor..I'm claiming good things....good things...

****Well, we just got back from the pediatric surgeon.  Corey will be having surgery next week to remove whatever this thing on his neck is..dr didn't think it was lymph, but also thought it was best to remove it and find out what it is!

I'm struggling with mixed emotions.  Yes, grand scheme of things all of this is so very small and the way it all has fallen together is nothing short of God's timing (to be able to be seen by a specialist in less than a week and then fit in for surgery  a week from that, uh hello!)  Things could be so much worse and for so very many mamas out there it is....my heart aches for them right now.   And maybe that's the whole point of this...just another experience to grow us, mold us into whatever it is that we need to be for the future....

Staying positive, giving it to God, and trying to breath!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Now the Gloves Are Off

By now, you all know my munchkins.....the only other people on this planet (other than Jim) who can make me soooo insane, yet so totally in love with them!

Life in this house lately has been less than stellar, we've been going through some major adult junk....yet through it all, we've prayed and trusted God for the answers...and when the ones we thought we wanted didn't come, we just kept our eyes focused on Him and kept right on walking until we got to the next step.   It's really been freeing, not trying to figure everything out..not worrying (well, ok..trying not to worry).  God's got this all under control and we are good with that.

So for the most part, these issues have been Jim and I's battles.....but now we've seemed to have passed our tests and now the focus is on our kids.   

The day before we were leaving for Alabama, Riley came down with a cough that worsened through out the day....like majorly worse...a quick trip to the doctor told us that my baby had pneumonia!  (seriously, runny nose in the morning then pneumonia in the evening!!!!)  Thankfully, a zpack, some steroids, and an inhaler cured him up in a couple of days.  Check..hurdle passed...

Then Tuesday, Corey started complaining about his neck hurting.  After poopooing him all day, I finally looked at what was hurting him....a lump the size of a pea on his collar bone.  Ehhh, probably a lymph node, but I wasn't too worried...probably just him coming down with something (and the fact that the kid is skin and bones doesn't help with padding bumps and vessels).  Fast forward to Wednesday morning...neck still hurts, Jim takes a look when he gets off shift to find the bump was now the size of the tip of his thumb...  Another doctor call.  Lump is definitely lymph, definitely concerning because of it's odd location.   Lots of blood work done (thank you Jesus that labs came back normal...I don't think I breathed or my heart beat for the 4 hrs it took to get the results!!!!!).  We still have a surgical consult next Tuesday because of it still being abnormal.   Praying, stressing, breathing, and trusting in the fact that God is in control....   Check..still trusting, halfway through this hurdle...

Today I was bound and determined to get a workout in...it'd been a week..and every day that I've tried, something has happened!   Started corralling the kids to the truck this afternoon.  Jamie mentioned in the garage that his eye hurt.   Because today was crazy windy, I just figured that he got some dust in it while playing outside after lunch.  Nope.   Pink Eye.  Like, the worst case I have ever seen!!!  His poor little eyes are almost completely swollen shut..he's miserable!  Thankfully, I only had to call the doc to get a script for him.  Check..stumbling, but not going to break..gonna clear this hurdle too.

Here's where I get mad...the gloves come off and this mama bear starts coming out ready to rumble!   (not to get to crazy religious on y'all, but there is a battle that wages around us and man are we feeling it!)   I totally understand Jim and I getting smacked around....we've got some major things coming up...major, trust in God and take the leap into an extraordinary life.   But the boys, they have nothing to do with these decisions....they're just collateral damage, or hostages to divert our eyes from the prize.

So, enough's enough.  I'm breaking out some major warrior prayers...instead of getting knocked down, I'm digging in my heals and relying on God's strength to get us through.   

God is Good no matter what we go through...and that will never change!

And..the devil is just a punk (and That will never change!)  

My focus is on the positives of this all....through every hurdle our faith gets strengthened and we can more clearly see His hand protecting, providing, and guiding.  

Makes me think of that old song...I get knocked down, but I get up again..you're never gonna keep me down...   

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Blue-ooo--oooo Angels

While in Alabama, we decided to make our way down the state to visit Jim's cousin near Mobile....and since we'd already driven that far, we figured we might as well take a short trip over to Pensacola.

Why Pensacola you might ask?   Well....we have 3 boys who love the Navy...1 is borderline obsessive ;)  There just so happens to be an NAS (Naval Air Station) located in this wonderful beach town...and the cherry on top is that the Blue Angels are stationed there and hold public practices on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings!   There is also a fantastic Naval Aviation Museum...and everything is Free (well, except for IMAX and crazy simulator games..but there is more than enough to keep you occupied for free).

The kids knew that we were going to the coast, but they were totally clueless up until we stopped at the security check point to get on the base.

By this point, son #1 is about 1 second from going into full blown geek out mode...it's juuuuuuust under the surface ;)  He did good, didn't jump up and down like a 12 yr old girl at a Beiber concert..just kept it cool as a cucumber!
The practice starts at 8:30 am and there are bleachers right on the runway.   Each section gets their own guide who gives you inside info on the planes and the stunts.   As they drove down the tarmac, we were told to wave and they'd wave back...but I guess I missed his wave, lol.

Honestly, I was not overly excited about this leg of our trip (I was very thankful for my lovely friend Kathy who stocked us up with their favorite brews on our way through St. Louis).   This stuff really isn't my thing...but...WOW!  These planes fly over 600 mph and 18 inches apart!  18 Inches!!!
These guys came flying in on their side facing each other and then broke off to do something else crazy.   It was a cloudy day so there weren't any big loops and such, but it was still Very impressive!
Can I say it again...18 Inches!!!!!
#3 for the day was a 2nd #2...but really they were flying by so fast that who knew!
At one point, one of the solo planes flew up over a hill behind the bleachers at like 500 ft..the guide called it a sneaky pass (but I thought he called it the Stinky pass...because it scared the poo out of me when it came roaring by!) 

There were so many more shots...basically I just had the camera on rapid shot and kept clicking pictures.   
Our guide told us that the planes line up with the Boss (the lead pilot) by aligning their wings with the hornet  painted above the wing.  It's maybe the size of a hot dog bun..maybe....   I get nervous when Jim drives too close to the car in front of us on the highway doing 70 mph.....I couldn't imagine flying 600 mph, 18 inches apart and then lining up with something that's around 6 inches!!!!  The precision and skill that these pilots show is amazing!

So, if you're ever in the area...this was a must...but the show was only the beginning!  There was still the entire aviation museum!!!