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27 December 2008

A Sweet Reminder

I was surfing around and found this paraphrase. It was just what I needed at the end of a long day. I hope it blesses someone else out there in Cyberland!

I made her. She is different. She's unique. With love I formed her in her mother's womb. I fashioned her with great joy. I remember with great pleasure the day I created her. (Psalm 139:13-16)

I love her smile. I love her ways. I love to hear her laugh and the silly things she says and does. She brings me great pleasure. (Psalm 139:17)

I made her pretty and not beautiful, because I knew her heart and knew she would be vain. I wanted her to search out her heart and to learn it would be Me in her that would make her beautiful and would draw friends to her. (I Peter 3:3-5)

I made her in such a way that she would need Me. I made her a little more lonesome than she would like to be, only because I want her to turn to Me in her loneliness. Only because I need for her to lean to and depend on Me. I know her heart. I know if I had not made her like this she would go her own way and forget about Me, her Creator. (Psalm 62:5-8)

I have given her many good and happy things because I love her. (Psalm 84:11 and Romans 8:32)

Because I love her, I have seen her broken heart and the tears she has cried alone. I have cried with her and had a broken heart too. (Psalm 56:8)

Many times she has stumbled and fallen alone, only because she would not hold My Hand. So many lessons she has learned the hard way, because she would not listen to My Voice. (Isaiah 53:6)

She is mine. I made her then I bought her because I love her. (Romans 5:8)

I have to reshape and remold her, to renew in her what I want her to be. It has not been easy for her or for me. (Jeremiah 29:11)

I want her to be conformed to My Image. This high goal I have set for her because I love her. (2 Corinthians 2:14)

Believe it and be blessed!

26 December 2008

Happy Christmas!

Caroline's Christmas Pageant
Avery, one of Caro's dearest friends & her sweet momma, joined the performance.
What a shock and thrill to be surprised with what they memorized!
(Check it out on the short video below.)


Merry Christmas! Perhaps a calendar day late, but I am as excited as I was yesterday morning. As a Christian my heart just busts open at the thought of Jesus Christ leaving Heaven, wrapping Himself in a suit of flesh, and the great "I AM" - omniscient, all powerful, perfect love - taking on a name just to reach the hearts of little ol' humanity. Choosing to be born in poverty to outcasts, visited by social misfits and the powerful alike, so as to leave no person out through the expanse of all time; to destroy the power of guilt, shame, death, religion, and replace everything false with lasting, uncircumstantial joy, peace, and truth through relationship with Him. As many of you know, when you get to know HIM life is so much better!

Whether you celebrate Christmas in faith or out of tradition, I hope it has been a great celebration of sheer joy for you! Certainly what you believe about Christ is between you and God. Whether you know Him as Savior and friend or just a historical figure, there is no denying His existence! Shoot, pretty soon it will be 2009 A.D.!!

"If you decide that it's a bad thing to worship God, then choose a god you'd rather serve—and do it today... As for me and my family, we'll worship God." (Joshua 24:15)

Much love to you.

video

21 December 2008

To You; Love, K.

Not much time these days to catch you up on the activities around here. I'm hoping to pick up my Christmas cards before Christmas, and I won my mom's Ebay auction: $2 and change for a Barney shaped potato, from my mother. Ha! We really are having a ball around here; very busy! Just wanted to give you this before I hit the sack for the night: www.theinterviewwithgod.com. My gift to you--
With love,
K.

01 December 2008

Heads up everyone! My mom has listed the perfect Christmas gift for any toddler or food connoisseur out there. Check it out! LOL!

http://cgi.ebay.com/Barney-the-Dinosaur-Potato-Head_W0QQitemZ330290960718QQihZ014QQcategoryZ1469QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

27 November 2008

Must Thank or Will Bust!

C's preschool class sang for the parents before their Thanksgiving Feast.
She loved being on stage next to her dear buddy "Roo" of course!
They are like peas and carrots.

What would a Thanksgiving Feast be without a few feathers on your head?!

While his big sis chowed down, J scoped the ladies while leisurely enjoying his animal crackers.


We celebrated at Mom's the Sunday before Thanksgiving.

Here J was darting from Aunt Mimi's friend, showing him who's boss and all.
I am sure he was trying to race Chris to pumpkin pie and whipped cream,
or was it whipped cream and pumpkin pie?

Feeding Duncan.
"See Caroline. He likes carrots. You should too!"
(Child psychology...)

We had to make yet another hat with feathers. Maybe I have turkey envy?


OK, this is where Thanksgiving gets hard.
We always take a family photo before we destroy Mom's beautifully decorated table.

In the making however, there were mashed potatoes on the spread before us and a row of desserts behind us. Can you see it in our happy faces:

"Put a fork in it, and let's eat!"

Today was the day.

(I'm not going to share the deep stuff, y'all. No condemnation, please...)
We stayed in our Pj's all morning and watched the Macy's Day parade, while sweet Daddy watched the brush all morning for a gobbler with Grandpa and froze his 'tookus' off as is the family tradition.
I then studied, and I mean studied the Black Friday ads like it was life or death.
Quick! Ask me where you can find the cheapest, yet most fashionably acceptable men's jeans.
(Yes my dears, 'tis WalMart!)

I think if I happen to wake up at 4 a.m. I will buy my darling a pair.

Then off to the Fields' Thanksgiving where sadly the turkey came from Kroger yet again.
Caroline did manage to capture a few hugs from this tender bird though!

Most of the evening was spent on the floor having so much fun!


Caroline had her chocolate milk in a special, very fancy, very big-girl glass which made her night!

And to conclude the mad dash through our Thanksgiving festivities, the cousins crossed the finish line with big bellies and happy hearts!

video

Grateful-
K.

21 November 2008

Love, Your Daughter...

Today is my dad's 63rd birthday! Hard to imagine my dad with gray hair and an older man's pot belly. When my dad passed away unexpectedly 11 years ago I remember in the midst of shock and deep grief how sure and certain I was to have been blessed to be his daughter. I knew even then that I would have rather had a shorter amount of time with him than a longer amount with an average father. He was such an adventurer: pilot, avid sailor, hiker, camper, he would spend entire days bicycling around the D.C. area, always exploring or tinkering. Growing up with him had no shortage of trying new things that enriched us all. What a gift to have had a father who did not feel limited in life, although he faced major health issues from his 20s onward. He was a humble, honest person known for his integrity. His quick laugh was often coupled with a crooked smile that I'm certain endeared him to all of his childhood teachers. My dad was the kind of father who took a day off of work, travelled hours, and helped clean the house my college roommates left me with at the end of a lease. The smell of a pipe, trumpet solos, peanuts, and all of the D.C. sports teams remind me of him. He was a California boy who grew up playing cowboys and grew into an investigator protecting the innocent for the U.S. Office of Special Counsel. As a Naval officer he settled on the east coast, but could never quench his thirst for "real" mountains and lakes. He had a gifted intellect and loved long conversations especially good debates. I remember when he passed wondering, "Now who's going to keep me informed?" My dad really challenged me in my thinking and understanding of my beliefs. He was a natural philosopher and seeker, and to tell you the truth, I'm not sure exactly what he believed. However, our discussions are still a gift encouraging me to mature in my faith with not just my heart but also my head. I am thankful that the spiritual truth of a loving Creator or heavenly Father is not an unreasonable thought because of my dad's devotion and love for his girls. Now over a decade later I no longer feel my "loss echo inside of myself" which I shared at his memorial service. I can see clearly the amazing man he was and God's fingerprints all over our lives. He would have been such a fun granddad, but I know his legacy will stir the imaginations of our children in a special way. Certainly to honor my dad and thank the Lord for him on his birthday is a privilege I treasure.


"And yet, O Lord, you are our Father. We are the clay, and you are the potter. We all are formed by your hand." Isaiah 64:8

"All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort." 2 Cor. 1:3

16 November 2008

Compulsive Catch-Up

Alas, my love-hate relationship with my blog continues. I love it when I am on a roll and I feel as though I have successfully documented every cute photo and monumental moment in our lives, but am so frustrated when compelled to catch up on the past two months! It reminds me of all those stray diaries and scrapbooks I come across occasionally with only 3 entries. However, I am returning to Blog Land once again and before the holidays! Here is a quick jaunt through my favorite October memories.

Erin and Kenny came to visit! They moved to San Diego close to 5 years ago, and can't you tell?! Look at those boots, my friends! No one is near hip enough to get away with those in our little town! Erin, Kim, and I taught together at Central and became fast friends. These two are precious to me! We were having so much fun catching up that I could have camped out for a week.

Our nephew visited on the 18th. I especially love to watch these kiddos play together! It's so fun knowing they will be friends for life. (Tidbit about moi: I didn't have a single cousin until I was 12!)

Mom had an amazing bon fire on the 18th to celebrate the season. Her boyfriend Jimmy brought his crew, so we got to meet "the family" for the first time which went really well. We were also able to hang out with Laurie, a dear family friend, who is nothing but fun. So in short lots of food, good music, goofing around, and again lots of marshmallows!

On the 22nd we went to a local jogging trail and picnicked with Grammy. What a great way to spend the afternoon!

Caroline and Jackson climbed a tree while there. Is this a no-no? Kind of like swimming after eating; you're supposed to wait a half hour or something? =Just kidding.=

This is one of my artsy shots from the trail. I could not stop taking photos of the foliage this year. It was gorgeous! (Unfortunately, the geese that usually banquet here were already on vacation the day we visited.)

And yes my friends, this is yours truly "jogging" on the trail.

And this is my little miss helping her momma finish the course.

FUBC had their annual Fall Festival which is always so much fun. We have an amazing puppet ministry that C absolutely loves. It's all about Joey the Puppet! One of the best parts of this afternoon was the cake walk. Little Miss walked away with a plate full of chocolate Rice Krispy treats. It was neat to watch elderly people using walkers along side daddies holding little people learning to walk all gallivanting around the cake walk. Nothing like sugar to unite the generations!

Oh my, and there was this afternoon...

I was chatting on the phone and wondered why J was suspiciously quiet. I walked into his room and this is what I found! As if an alien had politely set him up for a portrait. Little Dude was quite content and very proud of himself, although check out his look: "Busted.


FYI when you marry a southern boy breakfast is no longer about eggs Benedict and French toast. It becomes all about the biscuit. A good morning (some may even argue any good "meal") will have biscuits, but a great morning of course includes the gravy. So true is this tidbit that my sweet hubby made himself this delicacy one morning before work! (Was he gearing up for a good or bad day, I don't know.) That morning I figured I could no longer keep my children from certain evils in the world so I inducted them into the life of being biscuits & gravy connoisseurs.

Below reflects C's point of view on the tasty vitals.


The next photo says a 1000 words. Looks like there is a biscuit and gravy gene! J even went so far as to dip the biscuit in the gray matter, not to eat it but instead to lick the gravy off of his fingers.


And the grand finale of October...
My very own Raggedy Ann and Andy!




20 October 2008

Happy Blogging Birthday!

Ahhh! I missed my blog's first birthday! I am such a horrible blogger. I think I'm supposed to write how much "I love bloggin' with all my heart, bloggity blog blog..." Isn't that what the most talented and dedicated bloggers do? Alas, Face Book and wee children have captured my attention these past few weeks. I will so make it up to you, my big 1 year old blog!

Happy blog-ing to you!
Happy blog-ing to you!
Happy bloooog-ging to yoooooo-uuuu,
Happy blog birthday to you, Alacrity 101!



Bit o' Blog Trivia:
I named my blog after my dad's sailboat.
(Better the blog than one of the kids!)

04 October 2008

Baby Book Blogging

I can't believe I forgot to write about this!!
Warning: If the heart of a mother gets on your nerves, stop reading now.

This past Monday I was saying goodbye to my family for the evening and Jackson said something that sounded like "love you" back to me!! I think I opened and closed the door a few more times just to say goodbye again. And Caroline started sounding out (on her own) consonant-vowel-consonant words the same day! Big day for my wee tots and my over flowing heart.

Here's another cute story while I'm using this as my baby book. Tonight I was singing the routine "Jesus Loves Me" to Jackson in the dark during our bedtime routine. The sweet thing grabbed my cheeks and said, "Momma!" He went to kiss me and instead laid his sweet, runny nose in my mouth. Haha! I know, I know, I warned you!

Also, this afternoon I came to the realization that I am not Kate Hudson and my children's daddy is not a rock star therefore, our 19 month old son could no longer get away with having long hair and I CUT IT! Do you know within minutes of doing so I noticed how big his little feet are and how mature he has become. I think I have officially changed my shades from baby vision to toddler lenses, albeit a little reluctantly. He does look mighty cute though!

If you are still reading this, consider yourself family!

03 October 2008

The Best Day EVER!

Yesterday may have been quite possibly the best day of Jackson's young life! He slept in, woke up to discover his daddy was home and there were "trac-TORS" in his backyard! After an early morning of climbing the excavator we headed over to Palmyra Fire Department where he climbed the fire truck and explored the fire house. Tractors, trucks, fire engines, Daddy... What could be better?

Work Attire

A Picture Says a 1,000 Words

Jacks was over the photo ops at this point.


Mesmerised by the lights:

Jackson - the fire engine, mommy - the flashbulb.

29 September 2008

Homework at the Tender Age of Four!

Caroline and a 15 year old friend of the family were discussing homework last night, and I got such a kick out of Caroline's response.

Caroline: "I have homework too!"

Jes: "Oh yeah? What do you have to do?"

Caroline: "Feed the cats and help Mommy fix peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!"

27 September 2008

Treasure!

Today was our community yard sale day! The highlights of my findings are: a like-new Coach purse for $1.00!! and a Sm'ores Maker. We tried the latter out tonight and it's kind of like roasting a marshmallow over a candle, but it has porcelain bowls if you're into accessorizing your puffed sugar. I really bought the kit for Caroline because I know from a certain amount of experience just this past week that you can make a fine sm'ore in the microwave, but this little find made for another action packed Saturday night at the Fields'. Must peel the kiddos off the ceiling now...

24 September 2008

A Perefect Ten

Ten (at least) "sh'mores" (as Caroline calls them) per family member over two years old.

Nine o'clock p.m. and our sleeping bags felt heavenly!

Eight times during the night I hovered over my kids to make sure they were warm enough in the 40 degree temps.

Seven hundred times I must have thought, "Sherando Lake is so gorgeous!"

Six (at least) mammoth sized crickets were determined to serenade us into the wee hours of the morning. (We must have camped on their space. Personal vendetta, I'm sure.)

Five visits with our very gregarious forest ranger.

Four perfect hot dog/marshmallow skewers carved by my manly man.

Three hour early morning, FABULOUS field trip to Starbucks and Super WalMart.
(This should be a new Girl Scout badge!)

Two nights in the wilderness,

One very HAPPY family,

And ZERO curling irons, y'all!


Who would've thought a flashlight and a dark tent could be so much fun!

Camper Caroline and Her Coloring Crayons

Caroline was thrilled to find PINK marshmallows at the camp store -- Super WalMart!

It was so nice not to worry about manners or dirt!

Dig break! You never know what you may find!

Be still, my heart!

Our Little Mountain Climber


A Sweet Moment or Two For Momma






18 September 2008

35 Years Ago Today...


Happy Birthday, Donnie!

We treasure and adore you! I am so proud and honored to be your wife. You are an amazing husband and father full of integrity, wisdom, equipped with a servant's heart, an easy laugh, and always ready to have fun. I'm so thankful and excited about going through life with you. I love you more.

17 September 2008

Out From Under The Dell

Yea, I did it! I fasted from Face Book today with the exception of 10 seconds upon which I accepted a friend's invitation to be her friend. See, pure goofiness.

It did help that my day was packed. I "did lunch" and birthday shopped with my friend Elizabeth (http://elizabethmiller.blogspot.com/). What a hoot it was to share life between the Red Robin balloon bouncing beneath our faces and shouts of "truck" and "S'cuse me, Mommy, s'cuse me!" thrown in between. Elizabeth was a trooper though taking Caroline under her wing and even shopping (although from afar) the men's department at Sears with me. Let's just say "she was there in spirit" while she and Caro hung out in the Lands End section. As a side note, does the thought of The Men's Department at Sears bore anyone else to tears?

Moving right along, my fam and I had a homemade dinner with a load of friends and other special folks at our church's Family Night. If someone had told me 10 years ago that Family Night at a church would be a highlight in our day, I would have absolutely rolled my eyes and laughed, probably abused the Lord's name and prayed that it would pass! Oh, God does move mountains!

Then to top off my day of real-live relationships I ran into my friend Cindy (
http://hersmanfamily.blogspot.com/) at Food Lion and we perused the coffee creamers together. It was great to have her unexpected company during a last minute, mundane errand. It's so true the simple things in life bring the greatest joy! She even stood by me when much to my embarrassment I realized that my driver's license was not present at checkout. I was there but not my only viable piece of identification which did not work as a credible excuse with the cashier. Does this strike anyone's funny bone or have my natural highlights gone to my gray matter? I admit I have this bad, bad habit of putting these things in my back pocket then forgetting where they are when I change my clothes.

So this ends my experimental day of getting away from the Dell and out there where my darlings are! So glad I did.

16 September 2008

Face Hook

"Face Hook" would be a better name for Face Book, don't you think? My goodness I have just spent an hour AGAIN being sucked in. What a waste of time! Not good for a gal with addictive tendencies. This is going to take some discipline. I feel like I've been fishing in an empty well. No doubt it's been intriguing and has satisfied some curiousity, but more than anything it has dredged up chunks of the past that are better left under the muck of old memories. I'm just confiding in you, my tens of cyberspace friends, that this is proof we live in a society that is excellent at building loads of relationships that are about an inch thick in depth. Time for me to get off the computer, stop typing at myself, and make a phone call to a real voice or better yet make plans with a friend! Anyone free?

11 September 2008

"For real though!" (Anyone ever say this?)


My latest portrait...


Just keeping it real, y'all!

09 September 2008

We did it!




This morning could have been a disaster: 8:00 a.m. portrait appointment, shots for Caroline, rain...


But we were on time for our photo shoot! I can hear my nearest and dearest clapping for me now. Brook did an amazing job, especially considering it is a hazy, very-humid-bad-hair-day kind of a day! Thank you so much, Mrs. Robinson! http://www.brookphotos.blogspot.com Caroline would like more chocolate chip cake with Anne Charlotte too.



From there we were in town and found a mattress cover for Caroline's new big girl bed, lickety split. I was amazed at all we had accomplished by 9:45! Is this how everyone else with tots lives?



Then onto Caroline's dreaded 4 year old checkup where she was given 4 immunization shots, for goodness sake! I was amazed and relieved at how well it went. Whew! Then onto Chandlers Bakery for sugar cookies and Guadalajara's for lunch with Donald. And now my darlings are asleep and I'm going to make a run for the sheets myself!


Gotta love hazy days!








(I took more photos of Jackson because I have similar pics with Caroline near the same age.)

08 September 2008

Hi friends,
I just heard psychologists believe there are over 2,000 defined fears. However, we are born with only two innate fears: the fear of falling and the fear of loud noises. Interesting, huh. Here's another bit of trivia: The Bible has 365 commands to "fear not." One for every day of the year on our western calendars. Works for me! If all but two fears are learned, how much time we must waste learning to be afraid and practicing fear! One fear I deal with is being outside in the dark. Here's my banner these days in those moments: "You are my lamp, O LORD; the LORD turns my darkness into light." (2 Sam. 22:29) With God on my side what's the darkness!


So here's what I'm curious about, what are some of your fears? Don't be scared...

07 September 2008

Blessing on Aisle Three

We had a very relaxing weekend for which I am so thankful. Caroline recovered quickly from a stomach bug =whew=! Jacks started saying "thank you." Donald was loving the football games on prime-for-TV-watching, newly arranged couches. I in all of my brilliancy went to Food Lion early Saturday morning in sheets of driving rain certain the weather would only get worse. Of course, it turned out to be a brilliant, sunny afternoon. So we made a family trip to the library and to Dunkin Doughnuts. Does it get any better?!

Yes in-deedy! Today was awesome, too. We had a great time with friends in our Sunday school class, awesome worship, lunch at The Village with friends, a 2 hour nap, then back together with family. Let me explain why Sunday school was so good though. First, you have to understand that I am the teacher. OK, enough said. Now, I so desire for my friends and I to really "taste and see" (Ps. 34:8) just how good the Lord is, as in experiencing Him in real life not religion, that I just could not hold back from sharing a recent God-story. You see, yesterday I was strolling through my other home, our lovely Food Lion when something glorious caught my eye. I nearly caused a stroller calamity by screeching my buggie to a halt. Being a little taken aback by the vision before me I overcame all doubt and praised the Lord for the dark chocolate peanut butter by my side! Lo, not only dark chocolate, but white chocolate and cinnamon raisin swirl, too!! So today I took my peanut butter to church, and we all had a taste of the good stuff! God is so awesome; way better than dark chocolate peanut butter! Hope your weekend was as blessed as ours!




01 September 2008

Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day weekend was a great family time for us. I think that's the ideal title for the weekend too. You know, planning fun for your family is so much easier than actually toting the crew to and fro! Although this momma did have two labor free dinners! Beyond not having to cook, there is something special about sharing a meal with family and friends. It was so fun to see old friends from my days at Central Elementary. Here are some photos from the Valentines' (www.bouncingaroundamusements.com) annual barbecue. (Our friend Brook took these pcis. http://www.brookphotos.blogspot.com/ .)





We also went to the Steam and Gas Engine Pasture Party in Orange County. Jackson was on cloud nine with all of the things that went "vroom!" I don't know who was cuter, Jackson or all the happy old men in bibs. Well, I do know... Take a look-



We went to this event to also support Emmett. He is the son of a friend from State Farm and is an amazing philanthropist at the tender age of 9-ish! He has raised thousands of dollars for area charities by selling slices of pound cake that adoring women bake for him at the drop of a hat. He raised $359 for Sheltering Arms on this day alone! He even has a physically debilitating disease, but it obviously has not affected his heart! We are certain that some day he will be mayor! Go Emmett! Vroom!

On Monday we went to Fruit Hill Orchard which so beat our peach picking experience on Carter's Mountain. They were making apple butter too. The entire atmosphere smelled like a giant Yankee Candle. Jackson had a ball picking his apples off of the ground. He was using those problem solving skills to figure out how to get them all into the wagon without losing one. They were like wiggly puppies in his chubby little arms. Caroline knew just how to best put her people skills to work. She sweet talked her charming prince into a shoulder ride which helped her reach the highest apples in the kingdom.



I have to say I LOVE my job!



Oh! You'll love this... I took Caroline to a birthday party two weeks early. Yep. I know, I know... I'm laughing with you!