Wednesday, August 27, 2008

San Antonio

Loved it!

And this was not a coordinated outfit planned event.

Cute but oh so "swoled" up.

Texas beef...a good steak we shared, too bad it was 11:00pm

She called me "Precious"...

Friday morning came early as Steve drove me to the Tampa airport to catch my flight. I did not set off any alarms with my two small bags, so I was sure this was going to be a breeze. Three stops later and three disbursements of peanuts by the lovely staff of southwest, I was on my swollen feet again. Apparently I am one of those whose feet dont do well with flying. Fifty feet off the ground and the ankles grow. Add in the heat of Texas, salsa and staying on the 23rd floor, and it was a weekend of growth. Ha. The ankles will go back to normal, but I hope I never will be the normal I was on Thursday again.

Beth Moore delivered a word that was a dissection of Psalms 16. She was able to give us a feast of information went back to the days of Abraham and how it is relevent to us today. I can tell you that without a hint of hesitation, this mind and soul has boundary lines laid in pleasant places.

I was able to fall back into old habits and meet people I had met online and I was not disappointed in that arena either. These women were funny, brillant, lovely, real, and so worth the miles. There is no one else I would cross five lanes of traffic for in my pjs. But speaking of arena, doesn't it seem strange that at a woman's conference with 10,000 women, we would not be allowed to use the men's and women's bathroom facilities? But Noooooo, there were guards blocking the entrance to the men's room from all of the desperate woman. Oh the lines.

If you want to hear some of the music I have been listening to and my girls have been humming for three days, check out Travis Cottrell's song in the playlist on the side. This song was one we sang and it brought us to the throne. Enjoy.

So with new friends, a family to come home to that loves me and a wealth of knowledge to chew on and digest I am a blessed woman.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Sweet Homecoming

There is so much to say, but right now I am still basking in my memories of my weekend in San Antonio,Texas with some super groovy friends. We were at the Beth Moore Living Proof Live Conference and at the Siesta Fiesta for those of you that have no idea what I am talking about, more will come later.

For now, I must just share what little piece of pink Texas I brought home with me and how it fits so nicely on my Florida girls. They loved all over me for hours and made me think I should go away more often. Oh, and for the man of the hour... Steve, that is you...LOVE and kisses, and forgiveness for the dishes and mess, but seriously, thankyou for giving me this time away and for only wanting the best for me. I love and treasure you. P.S. The welcome home sign rocked!

Happy Birthday Brother

Eating at the River.

Every once in a while I get it right. Last week was one of those times. My brother, Todd, has had it rough, this last year. He has survived, but at times has seemed to spiral down in the sea of life. I decided on a whim to take a short road trip for his birthday and spend the evening with him and all of his favorite girls (Stepmom-Sue, Sister-Sherri, Sister-Me, Nieces-Stephanie and Olivia).

The time was precious. What a strange description when thinking of Todd, but precious were our efforts, time and results. He felt loved. Appreciated. Honored. Accepted. Worthful. Treasured. That was enough for me. You know that feeling when you stand back and watch your child do something amazingly kind...your heart wells up with a godly pride...that is the image I had of my God as He looked down on our time with Todd. I love my brother.

Monday, August 18, 2008

School Days are here!

Little Miss grown, Stephanie

Olivia our little kindergartner

The girls at their desk.

Our two lovely girlies began school today. For one it was like an old comfortable pair of shoes, and for the other one it was scary and it made her "nervous". Olivia began Kindergarten and Stephanie jumped right into grade three.

Both love the routine and schedule of life. Stephanie loves to be home and loves even more not to brush her hair in the morning. She would wear her jammies or panties for school if her teacher let her. Olivia had her bed made, was dressed and hair done before I even asked.

Olivia's co-op group is learning about habitats this year and she is raring to go on the whole coral reef world. Stephanie's co-op group will be learning about the colonial times and pioneers. Both of them could barely stand being left out of the other ones teachings, so that is how it goes, two for the price of one.

One of the greatest treasures I have is to help them learn about God and to take time to hide his word in their hearts. It is something to hear them say it and another to watch them live it. Oh, I love those girls.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Redington Shores, FL

What a vacation! Eight people, the gulf,a condo, guitars, some sunny days, some cloudy days and the fishing pier. Those are the ingredients for a great time.

Of course, we had our own ideas that included sleeping in, reading a good book, sushi, bowling, and pizza with a greek salad. The men had their eyes on the fishing pier. Aaron caught a few trout and Steve hooked a BIG snook,and two HUGE reds, all while Aaron was the bait man... but did not keep it since it is not the season yet.

The girls had their eyes set on fun, fun and more fun. American girl dolls,games, drawing, playdoh and making up songs, that is how they spent most of their day indoors. Disney channel held their attention in the mornings along with the most expensive chocolate milk I have ever bought. Many days we did not head out to the beach until almost lunch. What were we thinking? Hours seem to pass like minutes, and we would find ourselves looking at the clock and being shocked at the time.

The Olympics took up all of our evening. What am I saying? We were up til the wee hours of the morning most nights. We just had to watch the medals ceremony, to sing along and shed another tear. We disagreed with the judges, wondered how the chinese girls are so little, how M.Pehlps could be part merman, and agreed that it must be genetics.

Oh the beach, the white sand was everywhere, and we did not even care. It was in our towels, suits, hair, and even cameras. Seaweed was everywhere, and we did care. It was in the water, on the sand, and even in our suits. On our last day, it was washed out by a storm and we tried to be happy about that. Suntans...well as we debated over what level of sunscreen to wear, we just realized the fact is we were only in the sun for 3 days.

Our kids gave us many laughs, many kisses and much love. They gave us moments where we were left wondering how have we survived at parenting. I think we reminded them of the whole "yes ma'am, No sir" manners a gazillion times. Boundaries were stretched, and agruments were attempted.

But, this life is worth it, we all have much to learn. We are quick to take these moments and know they are fleeting. All too soon we will be left alone in the condo and the girls will be hanging out with friends in the pool.Oh my. We love our time together, and cherish it as a treasure.


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Panda Express

So what a way to end a cloudy day on vacation,but to head out for a meal at the Panda Express. The girls had been spying the great panda sign and dreaming about how great the food would be... Thankfully it was Kids eat free night.

Emma was the most excited and once she got over the excitement of being there, she spied the food and was so disappointed. She was a trooper, and actually won over by the delicious frozen fried shrimp. Olivia flat out refused to eat her saucy chicken and ate her plain white rice. She later got some shrimp of her own. Maddie ate her meal only because she HAD to. Stephanie ate hers, but I think she would eat shoe leather. We made the most of our visit, we probably won't be back anytime soon, sorry Randy, we were not fans. The chocolate chip cookies in the kids meal were a hit, and we are sure all fortunes will come true.


Yellow polka-dot bikini!

poser, Emma

Do I look cute like this?

There is never enough buckets !

Water, floaties and SEAWEED!

We are at our favorite vacation spot in Redington Shores, FL. We came again with our special friends Aaron and Samantha, Maddie and Emma Symonds. We get a great 3/2 condo and stay for a week of fun and sun. Guitar and dolls. Chips and candy! OLYMPICS! No schedule. No plans. Just relaxation! The beach is gorgeous, but inundated with seaweed this year. It is covering the beach and floating in the Gulf.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Waterpark mania

Maddie, Emma and Samantha joined in the fun too.

Torpedo Aaron got all the oohs and ahhs.
He flew across the water!

Matthew went with us too.
Hard-working husband missed out on the day.
Thanks babe. You give us great times.

LOOK AT THAT WATER! 72 degrees, springs!
We went with great friends!
Kay-Kay, Egyptia, Nhyzingha

After much coaxing, and drama, this finally happened.
Olivia then could not be stopped.
She said,"I went twenty-hundred million thousand times!"

One of the moments I caught her resting.
She could not get enough of the slides.
They got quite the workout today from all those stairs!
Great fun at Buccaneer Bay, Weeki Wachee, FL