Thursday, November 19, 2015

Fall, glorious fall!

  For those who did miss me, I am still here!  My wonderful little family and I are enjoying the ends of the fall season.  Today, its actually around 70 degrees in the little city of Marion.  Not bad at all for November 19!  The weather has been beautiful, and we've enjoyed every little bit of it!  This time last year it had already snowed a couple of times, so its a very nice change of pace!
   It has been a quiet few weeks, with not much to write about.  The kids have all done great in school, and they are learning a lot.  I miss them, terribly, but I'm glad to see that they are able to succeed in a school setting, especially Callie who has home schooled the longest, and brought home straight As on all report cards.  Hudson is doing well especially since this is his first time ever in a school setting and being away from me at all.  Lacey has picked up and started working so hard and diligently, and has even taken up basketball on the school team!  I'm so proud of each of them.  Hudson had his first non- home school field trip at the Apple Orchard, and of course, I tagged along with him.

It was fun for me to see him interacting with his classmates.  He's grown up to be so well-mannered and he plays well with others, taking turns and sharing well.  Much different than being at home with his siblings ;-) but hey aren't we all a little harder on those who live with us?  I was so proud of my boy, and thankful to share the day with him...


          Another fun thing we enjoy about autumn are festivals and parties!  We live close to a church where my Uncle has pastored for several years (I was a very little girl when he and his family moved down here to take over this church)  My Aunt told me that they were having a fall festival and making caramel apples, so I was excited to take the kids and let them enjoy time with the family that they don't get to see very often.  

   The kiddos made turkey cupcakes, caramel apples, turkey cups and beautiful lanterns!  

The kiddos both finished up another soccer season.  Don't you love the bright orange shirts they gave us this year? LOL oh and of course those bright green socks!  Dad even got his own bright orange Coach's shirt lol!  It was a great season! 

Tis the season of Family get togethers, my most favorite time of the year!  We had a wonderful dinner to celebrate my Dad and his twin sister's birthday!  We also took some family pics at her house!  We got a few good pics of the kiddos all together, but by the time it was time for just my kiddos, Sawyer wasn't having it.  Sorry guys, you probably won't be getting a Christmas card this year, I'm just guessing ;-)

My sweet Callie also celebrated her 9th birthday at the end of October!  It seems so hard to believe that my little girl is 9!  I can't even begin to tell you how proud I am of this amazing little girl and the beautiful Godly young lady she has became!  She's absolutely my prayer warrior!  This year her gift from her Daddy and me was a precious moments music box of Belle that plays "Tale as Old as Time" when you wind it.  It made me cry when I played it the first time, right in the middle of Hallmark.  Truly, she is my little Belle...  she reads books like they are going to be gone tomorrow, she loves adventure and the feel of the wind- and she sees the good in everyone that she meets.  My sweet girl...  I'm so thankful for her!

My sweet baby niece is growing up on me!  Norah bug is 4 months old now!  That makes me so sad!  She looks so much like both her Mama and Daddy, I just love this baby!  She has a big personality, I can't wait for Christmas time!

           I am sooo blessed with this beautiful family God has given me.

   Thank you for checking in on us!  Hopefully I will have more to update about later on..  for now, God bless you!  I've missed you all!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Becoming Myself: Embracing Gods Dream of You

Becoming Myself: Embracing God's Dream of You

   I LOVE Stasi Eldredge.  Not just because we share a name :)  There are other reasons.  Years ago, my Mom used to push books on me all of the time.  I think it was her way of trying to get me to look toward God, and I wasn't having it.  After graduating in 06' with a major in Journalism and a minor in Creative Writing, I swore the lit classes had done me in and I wasn't reading anymore.  (My how time changes you!)  Finally, she gave me a book called Captivated.  Since I was working part-time and didn't have a lot to do during the quiet times I worked alone, I started reading the book.  It was so incredibly practical!  This wasn't what I thought Christianity was..  I thought it was complicated, that you had to jump through hoops if you were going to be close to God?  I never really saw God on a personal level, even though I had became a Christian at eleven, I suppose i just assumed that was a ticket to Heaven, and that was as good as I was going to get.  I was not going to be one of those super spiritual people, it was just too hard.
   Funny story, in that same point in my life, at the same desk that I read Captivated and began to see God in a new light, I'll never forget reading a magazine article about people who were happy in their jobs.  I remember the least happy people were said to be gas station attendants.  My husband was manager of a service station at that time, lol.  The people happiest in their jobs?  It listed, Clergy.  :)  How ironic?
   I digress.
   Stasi is very real, and very open.  She is someone we can all relate too, and she loves Jesus with all of her heart, and leans on his grace with all that is in her.  This is a book about self love, and can I tell you how much I needed this!!!
   Here was one of my favorite parts of the book...

     "   I had a meeting to go to in a couple of hours, so I changed into more work-appropriate jeans.  I don't know what it is about the, but they work.  I put on a red top and big turquoise earrings.  Not my usual go-to outfit, but I loved it.
   As soon as I was dressed, a friend dropped by unexpectedly, and when she saw me she stopped dead in her tracks and exclaimed, "you are inhabiting your beauty!"
   I was inhabiting my beauty.  I had worn the jeans before, the top before, and probably the earrings with them, but something in my spirit had relaxed and I was embracing being myself, a woman who believed God when he said, "You are lovely."
   My friend left and John came home, and he had the same reaction that my friend did, and lets just say that outfit came off and had to come back on again before the meeting.  (It's okay.  We're married!  Its a good thing!)
   I wasn't squeezing into the pants by the use of an elastic torture device, nor was I squeezing my soul into any other prescribed form.  Rather, I was inhabiting my beauty, just being me and embracing who that is.  It might have been for the first time, but please Jesus, not for the last.  Some reading this may say, "Those jeans must be amazing and looked really great on you, but I don't look good in any pair of jeans."
   Can I just tell you that those jeans are a size 24?  Those fabulous, awesome, man-I-love-these-pants are a size 24."

    This book is all about accepting your beauty , no matter your size, shape or social status.  She also addresses some of the really hard stuff, like soul ties, which she explains far better than I ever could, but it has freed me from so many bonds that needed to be broken.  I'm so greatful that I was led to this book, and I can't tell you how changed I am in hindsight just from reading it!  I will read it again on down the road, and highly recommend it to anyone who is looking to embrace who they are, love themselves, and realize that God made them just the way that they are, and you are perfect in his eyes.

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