Thursday, March 31, 2011

Memory Lane

Since Gracie's photos went up yesterday, here are James':

James, August 2009

James, March 2010

James, August 2010

James, March 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

It absolutely amazes me at not only how quickly children grow, but how much they seem to change as well. For example:

Gracie, March 2008

Gracie, April 2009

Gracie, March 2011

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

An Interview with the Princess

1. What is your favorite dinner?

2. What is your favorite color?

3. What is your favorite drink?

4. What is your favorite game?
Hide and Seek

5. What is your favorite thing to do outside?
Ride in my (Barbie) car

6. What is your favorite fruit?

7. What is something mom always says to you?
"I love you!"

8. What makes mom happy?
Me and James

9. What makes mom sad?
When I do wrong

10. How does your mom make you laugh?
By doing funny things, like making funny faces

11. How old is your mom?
I don't know (when told guess) 21?

12. What is her favorite thing to do?
play with me and James

13. What does your mom do when you're not around?
go grocery shopping

14. What is something your Mom isn’t very good at?
setting up stuff she is not supposed to (????)

15. What is your mom's favorite food?

16. How do you know your mom loves you?
Because she says it and I know because she's my mommy

17. What do you want to be when you grow up?
a softball player

18. How would you spend $100?
just a little bit of toys, like teddy bears and Barbies stuff

19. Where would you like to visit?

20. What is your favorite thing to do?
I like to stay home with mom and James and have fun.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Free! Free! Free

Win a Walgreens $100 giftcard! Click here to find out how. (This is for real. No tricks!)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Ressurected Heart

"Create in me a clean heart, O God..." (Psalm 51:10)
Five years ago this month, I gave my life to the Lord by walking the center aisle of the sanctuary in what is now my church home. Today I walked out of that sanctuary for what would be the last time. Tomorrow morning (and over the next several weeks) that old sanctuary that holds such special meaning in my heart will be redone. Repainted. Restored. And a word that my pastor said today that has been seared into my brain: Resurrected.

That wasn't the only word that stood out in my mind. It was something else that he said. "Wouldn't it be wonderful to walk back into this place in a few weeks - on ressurection a ressurected house...with ressurected hearts?"

And I think God has been working in my life and on my heart for weeks with that message. And today during that church service it hit me like a ton of bricks.

I gave my life to the Lord five years ago. What have I given him since then? I wish that I could tell you that I read my Bible every single day. Or that I remember to stop and pray on a regular basis for people in my life that are hurting and in need. That God gets just as much of my time as my children, my job, my hobbies, or even the internet do. If I told you any of that I would be lying to you.

What I am even more ashamed of is that while I have been putting God in line behind everything else he has walked me through one of the most painful situations I have faced in my life this far. And every step of the way I have acted like an ungrateful child.

I have spent almost the last three years of my life being angry. And bitter. Pointing the finger. Blaming everybody else.

I might not be perfect but I found ways to blame all my problems on all the other people in my life. Being so angry and so bitter can start to eat away at you.

And then I thought when this new year unfolded that everything was just going to fall into place. That things would start to look up.
And for the most part they have. I have come a long way from where I was several years - even one year ago - today.

And then I saw The Grace Card. And I don't think I understood it then but God was speaking to me even before I set foot in that movie theater. I had vowed that I was going to be the bigger person. I was going to act in a way that was positive, no matter who was involved in the situation. And I find myself saying that and even repeating it to other people - only to know that in my heart I felt something totally different.

There is still so much of that anger and bitterness that lingers. So much hate in my heart for people I feel have done wrong to me. And the Grace Card showed me that sometimes the people we are forced to love are the ones who are often the hardest.

You can't just say you are going to show love to someone if you aren't going to do it. Actions speak louder than words..don't they?

So I have decided that the word ressurected is going to take on a new meaning for me. Particularly when it comes to my ressurected heart.

I am declaring that I am not just going to talk the talk anymore. I am going to walk the walk. I am letting go of the anger and the bitterness. I am letting go of pointing the finger and playing the Blame Game.

My pity party ended a long time ago.

It is time to show love to a world of people who don't deserve it. It's funny how that works out, isn't it? Because there was a man who gave his life. On that old rugged cross. Bled and died. For a world of people who didn't deserve it.

So when I walk back into my church home when our newly remodeled sanctuary is ready, I can worship Him in a ressurected house - with my ressurected heart.

Friday, March 18, 2011

My All-Stars

Okay, so I love to sing. No big suprise to most people who know me! What you don't know is I have had a love/hate relationship with American Idol since Justin Guarini had big hair and Kelly Clarkson wasn't a household name or all over the radio stations.

And to be honest, I think I was absolutely furious when Alabama nativeBo Bice lost the title to Carrie Underwood. I don't even really know why that was, other than - aside from casting my vote every time the show aired - I was just positive that he was going to win. And I was pregnant with Gracie at the time so my hormones could have just gotten the better of me!

But I have watched off and on over the past few years, and when I found out a few months ago that FOX was the only "regular" channel I could get through DirectTV (too long a story!) I started seeing commercial's for the shows 10th season.

Your audition shows are generally always the same. They show some people with real, star quality talent and then they throw in some weirdos. And although I totally missed some of the first auditions for my "American Idol All-Stars" team, I wanted to share my thoughts with you since Karen Rodriguez was eliminated tonight!

So if I had to pick my final four going into the American Idol final, here they are in order:

Stefano Langone

I can't say enough about this guy! There may have been some times when his performances flopped before they hit the American Idol stage, but I feel like he has been consistent to his performances each week! His take on Simply Red's "If You Don't Know me By Now" last night was fantastically awesome!! I think he could win it for real! And if he can't, then maybe she can!:

Pia Toscano

She has been awesome since Day 1 of her original audition. Each week she has done songs by these big name stars, and she has come out and given everything she has to make the performance her own. If Stefano doesn't take the American Idol title, I think Pia definitely will!

And who else do I want to see at the finale?

Paul McDonald

Okay so that song he did last week had everybody going, "Man, I've never heard of that guy!" but Paul is definitely something different! He has done some Elton John and Rod Stewart songs, but Paul has this whole character that he throws out. He has a unique quality to his voice and he is entertaining to watch!

Jacob Lusk

I don't remember seeing his original Idol audition, but I can tell you that he makes me very nervous with the songs he has chosen to sing. Only to come out on stage, put his own spin on it, and leave me with my jaw hanging open. I have heard people say this before but when you put everything you have into a song and you feel it so much that the audience can feel it - that is exactly who Jacob Lusk is!

There is absolutely nothing wrong with guys like James Durbin or Scotty McCreery either, but we've had contestants like them in the past who were signed to labels or got a record deal once their Idol run was over. I just don't see either of them making it to the finale, and I would be super suprised to see them win.

PS - All of this is just my own personal opinion. Please don't take offense!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Long Distance Relationships

(Friendly disclaimer: Tina wasn't aware that I was taking Skype snapshots until after she started making silly faces to the kids. She can't be held responsible for the photos you are about to see. Love you, Tina! Hee hee.)

So I knew that the start of this year was going to be a hard one for my little family. With Mawmaw still away, working overseas in Oman, we were then bombarded with more news: Kayla and Tina had taken jobs in Qatar. They left at the end of February. It has been a trying few weeks. Especially when at random times I would pick up the phone to call or text them only to remind myself that they were gone.

And apparently Jessica and John-Nathan (Tina's boyfriend) have caught themselves doing the same thing.

My mom has been after me to get Skype since she went to work overseas. And I just didn't do it, mainly because it was too confusing for me and the time difference makes it very hard to find a good time to video chat.

But let me tell you that in the last two weeks, Skype has become a Godsend for us. Gracie (who is having a hard time with Tina being gone) has really enjoyed being able to Skype first with Mawmaw last week, and then we talked to Kayla Tuesday morning and then Tina later that same day.

We are in desperate need of new speakers, but even James got into the Skype spirit and was blowing kisses and waving to Aunt Kayla - who was having trouble with her audio and wasn't able to hear us.

We are looking forward to more Skype video chats with our family in the future!
And now for more photos of Skype with Tina!


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday



Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Houston, We have a problem!

A few days ago, I got up to get James from his crib and realized (see photo above) that he had somehow managed to get OUT of his shirt!

I was absolutely shocked and very concerned that his diaper would be the next thing he learned to shed!

Thankfully this has been a one time occurence. In the future I hope he will keep his clothes on!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Grace Card

I saw this movie last night in theaters, and there is absolutely no way I could express (in words) how good it was. I have seen all three of the Kendrick brothers movies:
Facing the Giants

The amazing thing is that this movie wasn't by the same people who did all those other awesome movies. And it is only my opinion, but this movie was better than all three of those. Don't get me wrong, I love those movies! But if you want to be blessed...go see it before it leaves theaters!