Thursday, April 30, 2009

Each One Can Reach One

Ever heard that song before..."Each One Reach One"? It's old, but it's message is not. It's hard to comprehend sometimes how we can be that one to reach one when there are so many. It sometimes gets overwhelming, and when we're overwhelmed, sometimes we just give up. I can't deal with that, though. I can't stop trying to reach that one that needs Christ, can you? The Bible says, "A religion that is pure and stainless according to God the Father is this: to take care of orphans and widows who are suffering, and to keep oneself unstained by the world." (James 1:27).
It's our responsibility. It's what we're commanded to do. Yet, can each one of us make a difference? I sure hope so! I BELIEVE so! This is what has led our family to extend ourselves outside of our community and reach one....specifically a sweet, adorable Ethiopian four year old girl.
She is our new Compassion child. We sponsor her for $32 a month, which is not nearly enough, but it sees that she is taken care of, schooled and nourished both spiritually and physically. It is something the girls and I have talked about and decided we HAVE to do. Realistically, we really don't even have that money to spare, but we have the attitude of how can we NOT do what we have to do to take care of a child who is not an orphan in definition, but she could find herself there if anything ever happened to her parents who work everyday. It is our honor, and doing what God commands us to do never leaves us lacking. He always blesses, especially in the times we think we have nothing to give - we have EVERYTHING to give.

Please take time to read this and this and this today. You will not be sorry you did, and I pray it inspires you to extend yourself outside the borders of where you live and invest in another's life.

It's true! Each one of us really can reach one.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Our McKenna

Over this past weekend, something life-altering happened in our family. Our oldest daughter turned 11. I remember her birth as though it were yesterday, as well as the LOVE that we were introduced to as a result of God giving us our firstborn. She is a treasure. I blog about her often, so I know you know how incredibly blessed we are to call her our own. She never ceases to amaze us with her love for people. She is genuinely concerned about others, and seeks to serve them in whatever way possible. Never have I seen another like her - she gets physically ill if she even thinks that she won't be able to go with her Daddy on Sunday mornings to help prepare things for people to arrive. She takes it so seriously. She told me that it is what she enjoys...what makes her feel special. I want to be like her when I grow up!

Eleven years ago was one of the best days of our life as we welcomed our sweet 7 lb 13 oz. baby into our lives. She has blossomed into a beauty on the inside and outside. We look forward to seeing just where God takes her in life, and we pray her life is even more blessed than our own has been.

I actually missed her birthday this year for a ladies' retreat. I struggled with my decision even while there, but I am thankful that McKenna knows the best gift I could give her is taking opportunities to go and grow in my relationship with my Father so that I can be a better mother to her. We had a fun time before I left, and she even got to go fishing with her dad, grandfather and sisters for her special day. There is not a day that goes by that I don't celebrate you, McKenna. You are a gift to all who know you. It is my honor to be your mother. Your Daddy and I are so proud of the young woman that you are becoming. Know that God has great plans for you, sweet girl! We can't wait to watch them all unfold!

Dinner Menu

Monday, 27th - Honey Dijon Chicken
Steamed Veggie Blend in Rosemary Butter sauce
Sweet Potato Crunch

Tuesday, 28th - Pizza Night

Wednesday, 29th - Crab Cakes and Grits
Garden Salad

Thursday, 30th - Chicken Salad Croissants
Roma Tomato/Cucumber Stackers
Pasta Salad

Friday, May 1st - DATE NIGHT!!

Saturday, May 2nd - HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO JEFF!!!
Fruity Marinated Steaks
Steamed Asparagus
Sweet Potatoes
Cheesecake with Strawberry Sauce

Sunday, May 3rd - Lasagna
Caesar Salad

A Guest Blogger is my Name

Today I have been dubbed "Guest Blogger" over here. Go read all about what I've been up to there, since I have updated here in, like, FOREVER! Have I ever told y'all I stink at multi-tasking? Blogging and doing anything else just would put my brain in overload!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Menu Plan Monday, April 13-Sunday, April 19

Monday, 13th - Spaghetti and Meatballs
Garlic Bread

Tuesday, 14th - LifeGroup

Wednesday, 15th - Breakfast for Dinner

Thursday, 16th - Ham and Cheese Cannelloni
Lettuce Wedge Salad with Bacon, Tomato and Creamy Parmesan

Friday, 17th - Cubed Steak
Green Beans and Corn on Cob

Saturday, 18th - Hamburger Shots
Veggies and Dip

Sunday, 19th - Chef Salads and Half Sandwiches
Ice Cream "Sundays"

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Updating You...

For me, writing is pretty theraputic, but lately, the words won't come, or either I am moving around too much to listen for them. At any rate, my blogging has taken a serious hit. Maybe it's because I get on a streak where I think I should be funny, and then a little serious, and a whole lot random. That seems to be my pattern, at least! At any rate, lucky for you, it's a random day! Here's a peek at what we've been up to - some of it in pictures, some of it in words! I'll start with the Big Man.....

Jeff - Well, bless him...he's been on fast forward x's three lately! I really don't see him functioning any other way, but we rate Jeff's busyness on speed around here, and it's definitely been one of those "crazy" times. He has had lots of irons in the fire, and all the good kind, so that only means lots of good things in the works! God has blessed him so much lately with opportunities to share His love for Christ, as well as the vision God has given him for LifeSong. We are really beginning to see this desire for community transformation being fleshed out. You'll see some of what I'm talking about in pictures coming up.
Oh! On a sad note, Jeff's car, Bessie, has been dying a slow and painful death. I'm not so sure how sad Jeff is about it, other than the fact that it's a blessing she's going (finally), but a pressure to find a new Bessie, with a better, more fancy sort of name, of course! Bessie was a blessing, though, and while Jeff could care less what he drives around, we just want something that doesn't smoke up the area around him when he's stopped at a stoplight! :)

Amy - I, being the mom and all, benefit from everyone's busyness, so when I throw my own in there, it can be sheer chaos, coupled with a headache that lasts for a full blown week! Even good chaos has side effects!
I have had the honor of beginning a Community Bible study in my town. It is amazing to me that I've had a front row seat to seeing all of this unfold. I am in love with the wh
ole notion of hanging out with other women anyway for fellowship, and pair that up with an incredible Beth Moore study, well, then you have got the makings for an incredible 9 weeks! We have seen 43 ladies come be a part of this, with 20 kids being taken care of in our KidsLife, so their mommies can delve into God's word! My prayer is that it is not in vain, and we keep all this goodness to ourselves, but we'll leave the building and put our hands to work transforming our community. I'll keep you updated on all of that. I've had lots of fun lately doing other stuff, but this has definitely been the highlight of the last weeks for me!

McKenna - We continue to be so proud of McKenna's progress in school. She brought home an awesome report card this week. She works hard for her grades and we're tickled at how this is paying off for her. She is fast approaching her 11th birthday. I'm kinda, sorta, A LOT having anxiety over this! I'm not old enough to have an 11 year old!
McKenna starts soccer today. We are excited that she has made the choice to do this and see her really taking it seriously because it's been a long road leading her to this point. So proud of her courage!

Bailey - Bailey has been working super hard lately. She has taken on more responsibility here at home and at school. She stays ON TOP of the social scene in life, so we always know what is going on with everyone else!
She is the best encourager to her friends, and loyal thro
ugh and through.
She recently helped one of our Pastors on the day of our Community wide Egg Hunt by tracking the Easter Bunny around town on its way to our church for the Egg Hunt. She took some pictures and helped lead the way for people to come!

Avery - I am most proud of Avery. She has worked so hard on her school work, housework, and played hard in the process. She is fast approaching the end of first grade, and we are so proud to see her trying so hard to end well. She is working toward her goal of getting her ears
pierced when she turns eight in September. I think we'll be seeing some cute earrings come fall!

Quinn - Either she's the fastest two year old ever, or I'm the slowest Mommy ever! Keeping up with Quinn is work! She is very social, very happy and very, very into everything! She is slowly taking to potty training. I am just not as enthusiastic as I was with the other girls. I could beat myself up for not having her trained before two years like they were, but life is much different now than it was then. Back then, I didn't leave the house for anything, but I had to decide years ago that had to stop and I had to venture out and live a little! My attitude is better because of it, but it makes things like potty training like "Oh, it will come..." Anyway, Quinn has been enjoying days at the park with friends, talking my ear off (I may have heard her say "shut up" to Avery the other day...she has older sisters, people!) and just cuddling with me as much as possible. We have so much fun together everyday. We read, play and dance! She can get her groove on!

Enjoy these pictures of some special stuff we've done lately!
(a day at the park!)

(got to go hear Karen Kingsbury her!)

(Kite Day at LifeSong)

(Quinn and her little kite)

(plane flying overhead to drop Golden Eggs at our LifeSong Egg Hunt)

(a great crowd at the Egg Hunt!)

(precious sisters going to hunt eggs!)

(Quinn decided to "hide out" in her stroller from the Easter Bunny...She said, "It scare me!")

Monday, April 6, 2009

What's for Dinner?

I'm falling behind on my planning. We haven't stopped eating, but I certainly have been tweaking my menu these last few weeks. Once again, you may see some repeat performers here. Hopefully these meals will get eaten this week.

Monday, 6th - Leftover Chicken Pot Pie and Mashed Potatoes

Tuesday, 7th - Dinner with our LifeGroup

Wednesday, 8th - Chicken Fried Steak
Broccoli Casserole
Brown Rice and Gravy

Thursday, 9th - Pabellon - Carne Mechada
Black Beans and Rice, Plantains, Arepas

Friday, 10th - Date Night

Saturday, 11th - NO COOKING...on a trip!

Sunday, 12th - Easter Lunch
Potato Salad, Green Beans, Pintos and Cornbread
Allison's Love Language Dessert (aka Dump Cake!) :):)