Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Burdened to Share

The last few days have been weighing heavy on my heart. Why? There is sadness all around us. God has brought people into my life that have needs and sometimes they are BIG ones! We have friends who have recently seperated, some who have found out their two year old has been diagnosed with cancer, one who is 32 years old and was lifeflighted out this morning, she had another stroke. Pain and sorrow is everywhere. Come Lord Jesus! Each time I hear of more heartache I pray for HIS return. May we each be burdened to share the Easter story with others this holiday season, and year round!
Yesterday afternoon I was standing around chatting with other soccer moms the conversation went from light hearted chatter to extremely serious. One of the moms daughters came to us and asked a somewhat general question that totally floored us. She shared that she was afraid for her friend. Eyebrows went up all around and we all stopped watching our boys practice and gave this dear tormented teenager our apt attention. Her friend in school is a cutter. Apparently her parents have gone through a divorce recently and she is being told she has to spend the summer with her father, which is a total meltdown in her world. Since I have very limited knowledge of the family life, I can only pray for all involved. Anyway, this girl is tired of life and just doesnt see another way. She apparently tried cutting her hand between her thumb and forfinger to see if she could handle the pain. When her mother noticed, she lied and said it was an accident while cutting potatoes for dinner that night. My friends daughter is now crying and said that she is worried that this friend will slit her wrists next since she realized she can live with the pain to her hand. I took the next few moments while the other moms were flooding this poor girl with questions and assuring her she was doing the right thing to just pray. What is going on with our youth today? I was also able to observe the way these other women were handling the situation. One was solid on going to talk to the friends mother right that minute, while another suggested talking to the guidance counselor. We all had moist eyes for this poor child and how she was considering such a drastic and permanent action. The mom and the daughter left practice early with promises from another mom to take the extra boy home from practice and they could get him after dinner.
Have you ever had God seal your lips? He did mine. I am sure of it. I had a million things I wanted to say to that sweet friend who cared enough to share with her mom and her friends; but I couldn't. I had words of comfort come to mind listening to the other mothers talk about the worry they have for their own children, but I couldn't open my mouth. The only time I was able to say something was when I was able to hug that mom on her way to her car and whisper to her that I will be praying. She stopped, stepped back and just looked at me. "Really? You don't even know this girl or her family and you want to pray?" All I could do is nod. She hugged me again and told me thank you. I don't know if that was a good thing or not with her, I guess I will find out as we see each other three or four times a week. Maybe that was a chance to witness in a small way.
With my eyes watching my boy practice and listening to the other moms with my ears, I just prayed in my heart for the rest of practice. One of the moms shared about how this was really close to her heart as when she was in college her brother shot himself to death. Apparently she was supposed to watch him while her parents ran an errand,as he was grounded for drinking with his friends. She was watching TV in another room when her brother told her he was going out to wash his car. She heard a door shut and moments later she heard the shot go off. He had found one of his dad's loaded guns and killed himself in his room. This friend of mine still carries that guilt today. She said she blames herself all the time and she is super sensitive to hurting teens. She even works on a local hotline for troubled teens.
My heart aches for this situation and the many others I know nothing about. I can only pray that this girl gets the help she needs and that her parents take time for her and quit hurting each other.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Have you ever wanted to play weatherman? The boys got an opportunity to do just that. We were able to tour FOX 17 in Nashville on Thursday evening. We have a friend that is also an anchor man for the evening news who invited the boys down for some behind the scenes fun.
We were able to tour the station and see all the work that goes on behind the scenes. We spent some time taking to the editors and producers in the audio room. They were cutting and splicing through audio and video to prepare for a news story for that evenings news.
I would have to say the boys favorite part was hanging out in front of the green screen that the weather man uses to show everyone the current and upcoming weather.
Each one took a turn explaining away the storms that were in the area. The weather man was very patient with all the questions that came his way.
They were also able to take a seat at the main news desk and get their picture taken.

Humor on the Hill

When a friend and State Representative of ours asked if the boys wanted to serve as honorary pages on the House floor, I agreed wholeheartedly.
We were permitted to park up at the Capital! It was thrilling getting to park in a guest spot up with the rest of the Representatives and Senators. The guard at the shack was very helpful and showed us which way to go. Did I mention it was pouring rain? I mean sheets of rain! We were thankful we didn't have to park far away. We entered in a side door and went past security and made our way up to the floor where the house and senate meet.
We were up in the middle of the action. There were people everywhere. While waiting on the Representatives to come up from another meeting, we met with the Sargent at Arms and he verified the boys names on the list for working that day. He showed the boys around a bit and then brought them out to the waiting area. We went up to the balcony to look around. In no time it was time for the boys to go in and get busy. The House was called to order and the Pledge of Allegience was enacted and then a prayer. It was refreshing to see that before business is conducted they went to the Lord to seek His direction.
Once the introductions were made by various Representatives and their guests we were underway. We learned that the podium under where the Speaker of the House stands is called the well. It was very interesting to listen to the various bills and to them argue the details out, and finally either amending it, or passing it. There was one Representative that tickled me the whole time. Everytime a bill or amendment would come up if the word "fee" was in there, he would raise his hand to be recognized by the speaker and ask if the word indeed meant "tax". It was awesome to see this "troublemaker" working hard for his district. One of the Representatives defined it for this fellow and for those of us observing. A tax is a raising of the general revenue while a fee is a payment for a service or authority rendered by the government. The Representative said, "either way you gotta pay." To which the crowd laughed.
The boys were sent out on the floor several times to take copies of paperwork back and forth, and Cory had to get a Rep's hearing aid some new batteries. Good stuff. After completing their time on the floor, Rep. Pitts presented the boys with some certificates from the Govenor.
We looked around the Capital some more, then took the boys to eat a special lunch at The Spaghetti Factory. After lunch we took them to the State Museum. When we were finished Brian made the comment, "That was fun, but it sure was full of a lot of history!"

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Fighting with a Word Processor - Remember those?

This week I've been in a local office filling in while the secretary is out at a convention. Each time I go into a new office, I get to re-acquaint myself with different types of office machinery.
Today's challenge was a word processor. Now if you were born in the 90's you have no idea what I'm talking about, so you may want to go read another blog. However, if you run across on of these machines.. watch out!
In the old days there was something called a typewriter..years later they made this machine called a word processor. This was a new thing that everyone loved because it would go back and correct your mess-ups for you if you hit a button. NO more white out! This was also the end to carbon paper, as by this time the copy machine came out. (not that I messed with carbon paper much!)
This word processor was a lot easier to type on and so your papers could be completed a lot faster! Whee! I remember getting one when I was in 8th grade. I was so excited. It had a carry case too! I did all my high school papers on it, however, computers were becoming affordable to regular people by college so it collected dust my college years. Not real sure whatever became of it as I didn't care.
Oh! I'm off topic, sorta. Today I got to mess with one again. I hadn't seen one in an office in quite a long time!
Today was my day to get a newsletter printed,folded and sorted by zip code into a bulk mail container. Got it. Been awhile, but I remembered quickly and achieved my goal. However, the paper that goes to the post office, it has little blanks in it that have to be filled out and it will be a whole lot more clear if one types the information inside. (that and that's what I was told to do!)
HORROR! Okay, taking a deep breath I flipped the switch to on. The machine cranked up..I rolled the paper in, proud I remembered which buttons to push to do that.. and lined up the paper so that I could type in the first square. Simple, right? Ha! Not for me, Not today anyway!
I made sure that my caps lock wasn't on, and the number lock was off and proceeded to click the number three to put today's date in the blank. The word processor here had other ideas. I pushed 3 but got a plus sign. Thinking I was nuts..I tried again. Same thing. Okay.. I flipped the switch from WP to type thinking maybe since this was a kind I'd never used before maybe I just needed to reset. No. That wasn't it. It was now giving me a lower case "t" when I pressed the number 3 key. I then stopped and looked around the office. I figured I must be on camera somewhere and someone in the back was rolling in the floor watching my frustration.
I then took the piece of paper out, got a blank one and decided to see what would happen pressing various letters and numbers and see if I could get some sort of pattern going. All this clacking drew the attention of the guy in the closest office to me. Deciding to see if he was in on it, I asked him to humor me and come type his name out for me. He amused me and came over and became very frustrated as the same thing happened to him. ( I was thrilled!) HE asked me if I was messing with him! Laughing I assured him I was not.
We both had a good laugh over the combination of letters that we would get pressing the number keys and vice versa. We turned it off and on several times and pressed some menu buttons and some of the F line keys as sometimes they have various functions.
Apparently we were having such a good time that the guys in the back wanted to know what we were having such a good time over and they came to join in the fun. After everyone had a turn and realized that this machine was truly messed up, then the ideas of what we could do to the machine started surfacing. One voted to drop it off the roof, one wondered how often it gets used, another why do we even have such a piece of equipment here, and then the one who likes to guilt and tease folks said, "Well, you broke it!"
After everyone had their turn to poke fun at me or the machine or both.. things settled down and everyone returned to work. Me? I just filled in the blanks with my pen!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Patience Tested

My closest girlfriend and I took several hours of our time this past Friday to take my boys 12, and 10 shopping for new dress clothes. Well, one outfit actually. They were asked by a friend of ours that happens to also be a TN State Representative to come serve as honorary pages on the Senate floor this Thursday. I figure this will also serve as a sharp outfit to wear Easter Sunday.
Generally my shopping with the boys is a bare minimal to say the least. I know their general sizes and favorite colors, and which one likes stripes and which one doesn't care. So I can pick up a few things, (always keeping the receipt on hand) so if they don't like it I can take it back.
My oldest a pre-teen is not very particular about what he wears. I can pick up just about anything for him and he is content. Now that the teen attitude is coming out..the emotions run high if something doesn't fit right, or HE thinks it doesn't fit or look just so. Add into that his younger brother who DOES very much care what he wears..Sigh! Got the picture?
Both boys are as opposite as the north pole and the equator. Funny thing is they tend to gravitate toward the same things sometimes.. and whomever saw it first, the other one has to pick something else! They are also opposite in stature. Cory wears a slim and Brian a regular. Well, they can't have the same color or style so to say it took awhile to find these outfits is an understatement. Whew!
Side note: When I worked in retail in the men's department to be specific, I had to have a measuring tape and know how to tie a man's tie in several different knots. (it's been awhile, I can do a basic slip knot, but would have to study and practice some more to get it down). Did you know that several of the places we went, when I asked for these things I was met with a blank stare? Where has customer service gone? And I'm not talking cheaper stores, this experience was at Belk and Dillards. Anyway, we either experienced extremely low selection, or had no help, or the help we had was worthless! This one gal that comes to mind she didn't know where certain brands were, didn't have a way to measure so you could get the appropriate size, and generally just made excuses. We did better searching and trying than she did. She stood and talked. Pleats or no pleats, cuffs or no cuffs,get the picture? Just like for many of us women out there, the sizes are so different depending on the brand.
Many stores later, my friend and I are on the verge of throwing our hands up when I remember that I also have to get them shoes. Bigger and longer lasting sigh!
The boys have narrow heels and pretty much need a wide size. They are two years apart and either wear the same size or 1/2 a size off. Did you know that there is a big gap in boys to men's shoes? There is this funky in between stage called middle school and they no longer wear size 6 in boys so they have to try to find a 6 or 6.5 or even 7 in men's shoes. God help us! Let me tell ya, there is an extremely small selection! I sent many prayers up that afternoon as the boys were tired and every opportunity they had to pick on one another was acted upon quickly.
We did ultimately find shoes at a Payless! Wow. It was our last ditch effort before we rounded out our evening watching Alice in Wonderland. Praises! They found them! We were all glad to get off our aching feet and sit down for the movie.
I will upload a picture of them by weeks end so you can see the end result of our shopping madness!

Guatemala 2

Eddie is back! We had the privalege of having him over for dinner before our Bible study group started, so we got some precious one on four time. All of us were full of questions for him.
Eddie is a runner and he has been on a strict diet for several months now and before he left he was concerned about not being able to run alone down there and what the food would be like.
So one of our first questions was regarding his food. He told us his group stayed in the city but worked in small villages. They eat breakfast at their hotel which was cereal or fruit, then would pack peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch everyday, and then eat at one of the restaurants in town that evening. He said they ate at Pizza Hut a few times and Burger King.
Next was the weather. It was very warm down there and he was glad he brought SPF 90 sunblock. Apparently he was made fun of the first day, then he was everyone's best friend the rest of the two week time period!
This groups main goal was to get a roof put on a school in a village. Eddie helped with some of that, but ended up spending most of his time plastering. Apparently they use a lot of lime in it down there and since he just had regular work gloves and not rubber ones, his hands got rather torn up.
Here is a scenario of his first day. We got up and had breakfast cereal and then road the bus a couple of hours away. Upon getting to the work site, we met several people from the village. (this group only had one interpretor so there was a whole lot of nodding and smiling and pointing to things between the group and the natives of that town until the guy got there to tell them what was being said). Apparently the cement and mortor stuff wasn't where it needed to be so instead of standing around, Eddie got the group to find out where the bags of this was so he could at least get it mixed up so they could get the day started. So, the men of the group head up quite a ways to a shed that is holding these bags of concrete. These bags are around 60 pounds each. Eddie throws one up on his shoulder and another in his other hand as do the other American men and head back to the site. Some native women nearby see what is going on and proceed up to the shed to help the men bring the bags down. According to Eddie, these women made the guys look bad. Apparently several of the women put two and one put three bags on her head while carrying a baby nursing! (and beat him down the hill to the site!) He now holds those women in high regard! Also he said that the women often came in and helped out with mixing ect. if the guys stopped to take a break, most times getting more mixed and laid than the guys did! So the women of Guatamala are not afraid of some hard work, and many had smirks on their faces as they trotted past the men! Go figure! The story doesn't stop here. Eddie laid down his work gloves in the shed while he carried these bags to the worksite. On his last trip he retrived his gloves and as he was trotting back to the worksite for a meeting, he slid them on. It wasn't long before he felt something sting him. Jerking his glove off his left hand, a black scorpion beat his glove to the ground. A quick thinking friend squashed the critter and they went and tried to find first aid. THe group leader took him to the principal at the school. The principal gave him two blue pills and told him to sit down and it should take effect in 30 minutes or less. Upon hearing of an injury the locals started peeking in on Eddie. Most wanted to know the color of the tail. Apparently that has a lot to with how quickly you will die..
Eddie said he put the timer to thirty minutes on his watch and as the time went by all sorts of things crossed his mind. He said they kept asking him to touch his tongue as that would be the first stage, the tongue goes numb. Thankfully that never happened. He checked it often though, just to be sure! A few minutes into sitting there, an older grandmther type lady came in and milked the poison out of his finger and wrapped it for him. He said once his thirty minutes was up he hung out a little longer then went back to work! (we were told the locals called him Scorpion King after that!)
From then on out everyone checked their shoes and clothing and gloves before putting them on! Eddie said just for good measure he would pound his with a hammer and give them a good shake!
He met some dear children that lived close by the school and they learned to say, "I love you Eddie" in English. That softened his heart in ways he will never forget.
The group was able to hold some Bible school classes for the children and share the plan of salvation with them.
They toured several orphanages and found one that we will be working with. This particular one is run by three nuns, and they keep it in tip top shape. These ladies want some chickens and some fruit trees from us if at all possible. Isn't that neat? The other ones just wanted money.
There are two trips coming up in June and July to Guatamala this year by our church. Eddie hopes to go back on one of them.
When he was asked if this changed him his reply was, "I knew I would be, so I kept my heart open to such things, these people and the children especially touched my heart, I cannot imagine not going back to help these people. I'm thinking more than once a year."

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Pink Rainboots

Yesterday I was the recipient of a gift. I know! YAY! My best girlfriend, (I promise she held this title before the gift also) suprised me with some pink rainboots. Ohh! I haven't had rainboots since I was a little girl. According to my mother they were a favorite accessory of mine as I loved to splash in the puddles that were consistantly in the streets of London. She told me once, that I got terribly upset over the birds splashing around in the water without their rainboots on. (blush)
Anyway, these boots are under the Liberty collection at Target. They were very affordable and as all you mother's know I admired from afar as I generally don't feel free to spend money on myself. However...she saw me looking at them and put my size in her cart! Sigh.
If she reads this blog dedicated today to her and my boots and well until I think of something more awesome than these boots to dedicate it to, well she won't know how much these boots mean to me. See, I've been looking at rainboots. I do a lot of work in the yard and am continuously washing my garden tennis shoes out because of all the dirt and mud. I've been wanting some badly for several years, so I watch and wait for sales, then when I see they are on sale, they are now unfortunately out of my size. I wear either a 7 or a 8 and those are a popular size! So I just count it as it wasn't my time to buy them and wait another season. So.. my friend.. she made my day!
Thank you my sweet friend! I will wear these boots until they have holes in them! By the way, I showed them to the boys to which they replied, "Yucky! Look at the pink! those have girl flowers on them!"
My thought is: "guess I won't have to worry about any boys putting their stinky feet into my boots!"

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Science Fair

It's that time of year again for science projects. This year Brian picked out Which Type of Cheese grows Mold the fastest?
We went out and bought Kraft Colby, Kraft mild Cheddar, Kraft Mozzarella, and Kraft Swiss Cheese. We cut out small piece of each and set them on a plate in the kitchen on top of the fridge so it would be room temperature, but not in a place where it would be disturbed. Start date was January 25, end date today. So basically 49 days.
In this amount of time we watched the cheese sit in its own oil, the worst of that was the cheddar cheese. The mozzarella cheese hardened first, and ultimately ended up so dry it is kinda cracked. They all started to stink around week 5. Since it was on top of the fridge it wasn't too noticeable. ha!
So, bottom line on his science board we had to put under conclusion, no mold after 49 days. Brian is going to keep the cheese on top of the fridge until we finally get mold. I think it will get dusty first! I will try to remember to update this blog on how long it takes our cheeses to mold. We are kicking around for his 5th grade science project to talk about the preservatives in our foods using this experiment. Hmm... lots of planning here. We will do comparisons and record our data. Should be interesting.
So, today after school I had to deliver the science tri-fold board to the school gym. There are lots of boards already there, as I sign his in, I take a moment to look around. Now I didn't have a ton of time as I had less than 5 minutes before the closed the gym up until tomorrow morning. But what I did have a chance to see were some precious scratchings obviously written by hand of a fourth grader, and some that made me glad I am not a judge.
I'm glad I'm not a judge because a couple that I saw were obviously out of a fourth graders league. I'm talking major parent involvement. I could not give a child a top award knowing it is not that childs work! When a science fair entry is using big words like dynamics and velocity you know a parent typed it out. One was talking about the velocity of a golf ball depending on one's stance and abilities. Hmmm. It had a graph that was awesome and it had calculated down to the fraction of a centimenter where the ball would land. hmmph!
My favorite ones are the ones written in crayon and they have colored in graphs. So real!
All I had to do for Brian was go pick up the before and after photos he took with my camera from Walgreens. He wrote down his data in a notebook and he checked the status each day. He then transferred it onto the board. OH, one more thing I did. I had to deliver it to the school as they couldn't take them on the buses.
Other than this mild irritation this St. Patricks day was a good one! I started the day taking a green cake with napkins, drinks and cups and forks to Brian's class so they could have a yummy holiday. Then off to go help Teri paint some bookshelves she is putting in her office. I have some touch ups to finish tomorrow on two of them, then I have to take the third bookshelf out to primer it and then let that dry and get that one painted! Good creative juices flowing here! While waiting for the layer of paint to dry, we got to eat a sandwich at Strattons and drink a chocolate malt! We fit in some errands, one of which is Targets new design line! When in the store look up for the butterflies, this will lead you to some new patterns that are super fun! And they are in and on everything from clothing to dishes to towels to shoes.
Then home real fast so I could help Brian with homework and get Cory from Remix then back home and here I am... whew!
Good night all!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Okay, so I ran over a squirrel today

So this afternoon I ran over a squirrel. I really didn't mean to. Stupid thing was doing its high five thing with another squirrel in road and they darted off. I thought they both cleared. BUMP. Sigh.. one didnt.
So my boys on the way home tonight were all, "Oh look! Someone hit a squirrel today!"
When I didn't respond they persisted. "Mom did you see that? That big bird was eating on it!" I mumbled a response about the circle of life hoping that it would be dropped and we could move on.
Pulling in the driveway my persistant middleschooler was all," Mom. Do YOU know who ran over that squirrel?" Okay, so since I've been big on not lying and our virtue of the month is Honesty I answered with a yes. Masked in with what they would want for dinner.
Not being fooled, he follows up with, "Seriously, you committed a crime of road kill?"
Thrilled with my obvious want of this particular subject to be dropped, he asked me what seemed to be a thousand questions.
"Why did you do it?"
me: It wasn't on purpose son.
"Did ya stop and get out and go look at it?"
me: gross no!
"Can Brian and I go look at it?"
me: why? I dont think thats a good idea..poor thing has laid there for a couple of hours.
"We could go scoop it up for you and then have a funeral for it."
me: " No. It's a squirrel"
The boys grew tired of bugging me so they ran off to play with a neighbor kid down the street.
I should have known. No, I know what you are thinking. Those boys picked that dead critter up and brought it home.
(I am a master mom in that I planted seeds of intense pain if they did. I explained to them it could be rabid and then they would have to get a series of shots.)
Since they would rather wear pink than get a shot, they didn't bring it home. However. They did come home telling me how they went and looked the situation over.
Let's move into the next scene shall we?
This is the part where our senior citizen neighbors across the street inform me that my boys are down the street poking a run over squirrel with a stick. ANOTHER BIG SIGH.
As I'm walking down the street in a huff, the boys come rushing toward me on their bikes. "Mom you killed a mamma squirrel!"
me: what? How would you know that?
Brian, with his eyes turned downwards says, " because Mom, we saw the babies..that big bird is eating them. Why did you kill the squirrel?"
me: Seriously! you guys think that I purposefully saw the squirrel in the road and got my kicks off of running it over?
I'm starting to be rather upset myself over the whole situation. Ugh!
"Mom, you need to tell God sorry."
me: Dear God, I'm sorry I killed a squirrel by accident, and I'm sorry that it was a mama squirrel. Amen"
So far it has been 1 hour and 3 minutes since one of them brought this incident back up to me. Seriously, I hope this doesn't stick into my subconscious so much that I dream about it.

Guatamala Chapter 1.

A friend of ours is on his first mission trip. He is spending two weeks in Guatamala helping to put a new roof on a school in a small village south of Guatamala city. He has experienced some precious children that have warmed his heart in ways he never thought possible. He is amazed that these children just want a person's time and attention! They do want something else if you have it...candy. He was able to see how valuable crayons are to these children. Each day there is a childrens time where they color and hear a story about Jesus. And each day those crayons are coveted. (remember this is a culture that they pretty much live in the jungle, they don't have food storage either, every meal is whatever you find to cook up over an outdoor spit of sorts, and shelter is temporary at best)These children are thankful for anything and it is really something to see. It doesn't hurt that one of the little girls, Maria has learned to say, "I love you Eddie" in english.
He has been able to do some groundwork for upcoming mission journeys by iterviewing several potential orphanages. He and a fellow missionary found one out of several that truly seems to fit. This nun is running an orphanage for girls. These girls have had and been through some major bad stuff,and she runs a tight ship.This was an impressively clean orphanage. The beds were made, the floors were clean, and the children were respectful and working hard themselves to keep things clean. He was very impressed that when they talked to her about what she needed she wasn't interested in money. She wondered if perhaps we could buy her some chickens so she could use the eggs to feed the girls. As time goes by and she gets more chickens she would be able to sell some of the pastries and things she made from them to help support the mission and the girls. She was hoping from that to take some proceeds and buy some herb plants and some fruit trees to plant, so that there would be a continual resource for the children. She said she had been praying for someone to come along and help her. She prayed for God to send her someone. To say the team was impressed is an understatement.
There are many more details coming out of this trip that I can't hardly wait to share with you and the rest of our mission team in future posts. Part 2 is coming up soon as he will be back this weekend and I just can't wait to hear all about the rest of the trip.
God is so good, and as my friend is learning, He does answer prayer. It is amazing when you get to see God's hand at work. Sometimes that is hard in the States. We are a blessed nation and take so much for granted. I will post pictures next time when I have some on hand.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Mud Games

Saturday was the first game of the Spring soccer season for the 10 year old Strikers. To set the scene, you must know that it has rained on and off for three days prior to the game. Game morning there is a definate, and purposeful
rain coming down. We go check out the website to find that the game is still on. Arriving at the field we find ourselves in is drizzling rain and the temp is 47 degrees.
The boys are loving this! There is a huge mud puddle in the center of the field and lots of sloppy mud and patches of grass everywhere else.
The whole game was in slow motion.. the mud made for the ball getting stuck often and the boys slipping and sliding. There was lots of laughter and silliness
built in and the parents had a great time sitting in the rain and laughing in spite of ourselves...Brian scored a goal and assisted on another. He celebrated his goal by taking a big slide down the center of the field!
The game ended in a tie, with everyone ready to clean up and warm up!
Sweeties car needed a good cleaning and I spent lots of time hosing down clothing and shoes before puttting them in the wash.
Welcome Soccer season!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Thank You Lord For a New day!

January 1st may be the calendar start of a new year, but for me, a new year starts when the first signs of spring start to show themselves to us again. The sun is out, the birds are chirping, and the Warmth! My buttercups are coming up, as is new growth everywhere! I'm encouraged each spring as I pull back the dry leaves to expose the new growth of a plant. The new life that has been growing in the darkness and pushing its way above ground so that it makes it appearance at just the right time. I believe we too Bloom during different stages in our lives. (Wow thats a blog all in itself!)
We have had the blessing of a couple of warm days this week, and we are celebrating! There is much to be appreciated seeing some green grass, or in our case some onions sprouting! The trees are budding and soon everything will be just vibrant with a rainbow of color! This time of year, as I do in the fall, I send up prayers of thanks for my eyesight!
Yesterday a friend and I went up into Kentucky to run some errands, and how wonderful it was to see the fields being prepped for planting! We saw horse drawn plows and tractors busy in their preparations for another promising season.
On a different note, soccer season has begun and we are all ready for it. Little man has been playing for several years now, and we enjoy watching his progress.
Our middleschooler, he is practicing more music on the piano for his recital in May. Sweeetie is taking his final courses and anticipating his graduation!
As I ponder these changes taking place, and the new growth that will come in our lives this year, I am ever thankful to our Heavenly Father for giving us another day!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Bring on Spring!

This winter has been a long, cold, wet, and grey one. While I enjoy the cold of winter and the various snow activities, of which we get very little of here in Tennessee; I’m so ready for the warmer weather.
(Wow that makes me sound like a spoiled southerner.)
Bring on the spring! The green, the warm sunshine, flowers, and the promise of new life to the yard and surrounding scenery! The family can get outside and go! Gardening, cycling, hiking, camping, picnics, swimming, white water rafting! Oooh! I’m getting excited!
I think one of the reasons I get anxious for spring is that I like to dig in the dirt. If I’m not planting something, my happy meter is low. Last year a close friend and I planted several daylilies, and iris. I so look forward to reaping that harvest! It is therapeutic to me to have a fresh bouquet of flowers on the kitchen table. Planning the flowers, the potted arrangements and ferns to warm up the front porch is one of my most favorite activities all year!
Last year Sweetie and I worked three new flower beds and even planted some new bushes. We painted outside and replaced the front porch columns, the windows and air/heating unit. While there are lots of updates to the inside we still have to complete, I am way more excited about outside improvements! This year I hope to buy some evergreen trees to fill in the tree line between us and our neighbors. I have sketched designs for enlarging our back deck and building a backyard oasis for us to relax in after a long day of work. This is the part where Sweetie cringes. I have designed a pagoda and have found the stone I want to use for the flooring and walkway. This includes a separate grilling area and a rock fire pit that would have stone benches so that more than 6 of us could sit around and roast marshmallows.
We tend to have many people over to visit and to be able to expand our living space into the outdoors while living in a subdivision is challenging, but not impossible. Oh! Just typing this out and dreaming about it makes me smile! No, I won’t get all that accomplished this year, but it’s in the 5 year plan!
What are you dreaming about accomplishing this spring/summer?

Monday, March 1, 2010

Friendship Bridges Built Across Time

People come and go in our lives. Okay, I hear ya. Yes, that's obvious. My point is, how some folks you just connect with, where others you don't. However, each person has an impact on our lives.

The experiences I had with each one, some formed my opinions and ways I interact with people today. Is it the same with you? Think back to your first friend. Was it a neighbor someone you played with after school each day? Or perhaps a classmate that saved a seat for you at the lunch table. Was it a bully, or a well intentioned classmate that hurt you? Each one had a purpose and was in my life for a reason, as I was in theirs for a reason. Just as you were for someone else.

Some of these people I just knew would always be in my life, but they aren't anymore. Thanks to social networks like facebook, and myspace several of these broken ties are connected once more. Time and circumstances have changed us, but our friendship is still there. We are living life, but still connected to past moments in time. This year Sweetie and I are making plans to attend our 20 year highschool reunion. Man, its something to say that but to type it just makes it more real. 20 years! When did that happen?

Somehow our generation was determined, as I'm sure that others before us felt, that would live our lives differently and change the world. The world has changed. I'm sure there are tangible connections and impacts our class has made for the better to improve our lives and that of mankind. We all hope to leave the world a better place than we found it. How many of your dreams and goals did you accomplish? Embrace the victories, try hard to let go of the disappointments.

Moves from state to state, death, divorces, marriages, children, life.. it happens. We spend our lives attached to duties, jobs, commitments. Schedules define our time. We move from event to event until we look up and our children are grown, we are living our parents lives, or some variation of it. Suddenly, it's been 15 years, or 20,30, 40. Where did the time go?

Spending time with some new friends last night, we talked about how much we have each changed over the years. Things that were so important to us at one time have faded and we have moved on to others. Our priorities are as varied as we are. Time moves on, things change. New people come into our lives through work, church, school, community.

We have friends in our lives that are older,same age, and younger. The older ones,
have much to share with us, if we will just listen. Experience, and example is what gift they bring to the table. Same age group? They give us the gift of understanding, we all grew up listening to the same groups, have the same memories, share the same struggles. The younger group? They keep things fresh. Yes, we are constantly reminded of how old we are by them, but the ideas and energy they bring to the friendship is just refreshing!

If possible, take time to be "old school" and write a note to your friends. What a wonderful suprise to get a greeting from a friend instead of advertisments and junk mail! If they are close by, set up a lunch date. The gift of friendship given to each other is priceless! Don't waste it! Reconnect on a more personal level. You will be better for it, and so will they!