Monday, December 31, 2012


and in all things... session 42

Things I am thankful for in 2012...
  1. Philippians 1:6
  2. LOTS OF SNOW!!! (for those of you that do not know Chris and I very well, fall is our favorite season, with winter being a very close 2nd)
  3. Friendship. Community. Unity. Vision.
  4. The INCREDIBLE men/women of God that I get to do ministry along side. It's amazing what can happen when there is a common goal, but many different giftings.
  5. Family.... you know, the people you can truly be yourself around... the ones who challenge you to be a better person just by being in your life.
  6. Unconditional Love.
  7. Time to watch my little ones grow... and wonder.... and think... and problem solve... and fight... and cuddle... and dream... and explore.
  8. "...and the two shall become one"- one spirit, one mind, one vision, one mandate.
  9. Coffee.
  10. This song. (it's an oldie... but made a major impact on my alone time with God during times this year that were very draining)

good-bye 2012

I am not joking around when I say that this past year FLEW by.
We laughed....We cried....We joked....We explored.
We prayed....We hoped....We changed.
We are ready for 2013.

Yesterday we were challenged with Ephesians 4, and I can't stop thinking about how this applies to our family. I'm excited! Our question for 2013: God what are you doing, and how can we be a part?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

...but as long as you love me so, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.

Chris has been working insane hours at work lately, so when I got the call at bedtime that that they needed to be in full snow gear when he got home, I didn't argue. "I thought we were getting ready for bed, mom?" Once they figured out daddy was coming home to play, they couldn't contain the excitement. Smiles all around.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Peace, Love & Gymnastics

Today Zoey had her 1st gymnastics recital "Peace, Love & Gymnastics." She was slightly nervous, but did a wonderful job making her parents proud!

Friday, December 14, 2012

i don't have a compartment for this.

I imagine parents all over the world are struggling tonight just like me.
Why did this happen?
What would I do?
How would I cope with this if I was directly involved?
How can a 5 year old child even have the capacity to  understand what happened?
Then the questions come that I can't even put into words...
The ones that will haunt me for quite awhile.
As Chris and I were talking through tears tonight about the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, I told him I was struggling with where to put this... what compartment of my heart and soul this fits into. I haven't come up with an answer for that yet, but my prayers are soaked with tears for the dads and moms that have to go home without their child tonight. The ones whose worlds are shattered. The ones who can't breathe through the pain.
I have started my prayer for these families over a dozen times, and I get stuck after the 1st sentence. I've decided to give up on my own feeble words and pray David's words in Psalm 34 tonight.


The Bunk Express

 Tonight we had our annual BUNK EXPRESS expedition. The kids couldn't control their excitement! This year we decide to walk around instead of drive around, and I am so glad we did. We laughed, we joked, we held hands to keep warm.... all the things that make me love being a family!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

1 Corinthians 16:14

The kids were napping so I took the opportunity to run out to the grocery store by myself. While I was checking out there was a stressed mom behind me and her kids were letting her know very loudly that they had enough. I could tell she was embarrassed by the way they were acting by the tears that started to form in eyes. I put all my stuff in the truck and saw her start to load her van behind me. I couldn't shake the feeling that I needed to talk to her... encourage her... bless her. I started over twice and convinced myself to turn around thinking about the fact that I might be embarrassing her by trying to comfort her. Finally, I got over myself and walked over there. As soon as she saw me she started to cry and said "I'm so sorry you had to see that." I started to rub her back and tell her how much I could relate. I gave her some money to get a coffee on her way home and asked if I could pray for her and her kids. She cried harder and asked why I was doing this. I told her that God sees her... she said she wondered that very thing this morning. The story goes on, and by the end we were both in tears.

I am SO done second guessing.
The fact is, I pray for opportunities to minister when all I have to do is look around me. There are hurting people, discouraged people, lonely people and overwhelmed people ALL around us. They are all in need of God's love.... just like we are. I want to let God use me to touch them.

Her name is Stephanie and she has 3 young kids, and she will be at the top of my prayer list this week.


i love all things christmas.

I love all things Christmas.
I love the month of December. I love decorating the tree. I love the glow of the Christmas lights in my living room. I love buying people gifts. I love the bustle of December...the parties, the get-togethers, the special events. I love the smell of Christmas cookies (the ones others make, not my own). I love Christmas music, I love Christmas movies and I even love the color red.

Last night we attended a special dinner with friends to honor and support Key of Hope. In October, my parents and a group of 20 went to Durban, South Africa, to run a kids' camp (similar to CFL) for the AIDS orphans there. The stories continue to rock my world. Hearing Dan Smithers talk last night about the children he ministers to on a daily basis really tore my heart open.

I always thought I kept Christmas in perspective... but listening to Dan speak last night made me re-evaluate... again. What's important? Where should our money go? Where should we spend our time? Who needs us the most? What are we here for?

I felt last night that the Lord put another one of His mighty fingerprints on my heart and is continuing the life-changing journey He started with me at the beginning of the year. Christmas, and my life for that matter, is just different in 2012... and I pray it never goes back.

{I want to give a special SHOUT OUT to one of my favorite people in the world, Auntie Li-Li, for coming over and spending time with us last week and getting some really cute pics of the kids. We love having you in our lives!}

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

He might secretly be a Super-Hero.

Seeing him utterly exhausted last night reminds me how hard he works for our family.
He makes all of this possible.
After an almost 14 hour day, he doesn't even have time to change out of his work clothes before he is kissing boo-boos, correcting behavior and brushing little teeth.... and after all that he still has enough love and energy to give me the attention and encouragement I need to go another day.
I couldn't ask for a better partner-in-crime.
He doesn't miss a beat.
Superman has nothing on him.

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Force is strong with this one.

Ever since we went to Downtown Disney 2 years ago, Isaac has reminded us that he wanted to build his own light saber. It was so much fun watching him pick out each piece... plus I had to hear why he chose green (Yoda and Luke Skywalker). We have only had it for 2 weeks and it has already gotten much use!

Our baby turned 1

 I didn't get any good pictures, but the day was perfect. Our baby Jakey got dedicated at church and had his 1st birthday. Chris and I both shared a smile and a frown that morning knowing that our baby was getting so big! This boy brings our family so much joy and I can't even look at him without a smile on my face.... just another sweet reminder of God's faithfulness in our lives! Thank you to everyone who made Jake's day so special... we don't take your role in his life for granted!

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