Jun 21, 2008

A Reminder

We are excited about going on our family vacation very soon. Today has been a day of packing and organizing. When I walked into my bedroom, I saw something on my bed....

A sobering reminder that I'm being watched! Even when I think I'm not teaching, I am.

God gave us another reminder last night. I was gardening when it started to rain. The sun was still out, so I said to Matt, "Hey, I bet there's a rainbow out front!" We both ran to look. No rainbow. Matt and I searched the clouds, but there wasn't any sign of one. I stood there, and prayed that God would give us a rainbow. Then, we went back to work. Not even two minutes later, we looked again. There wasn't just a rainbow...it was a DOUBLE RAINBOW! I had no time to go get the camera, because we stood there too long, dumbfounded. It was just beautiful!

Ezekiel 1:28 "As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord..."

He answers prayer above and beyond what we could ever think or ask.

Well, I need to get back to packing, but I had to share one more thing. Joel has been outside doing yardwork. He just came inside for a break. As soon as he turned around, I ran for the camera.

I always knew my husband had a big heart.....but this just confirms it!

He sweated a heart just for me! -gross and cute, all at the same time. :o)


Jun 17, 2008

Cherish the Moments

I love talking to my Papa because he cherishes and values family. He will tell you what it was like growing up in the 1940's verses now. He will share with you that your children are the best investment you will ever make. Just by spending a few minutes with him, you will feel the warmth and love that naturally seems to flow out of this sweet man. You'll never be able to walk past him without getting a warm hug, or a special compliment just for you. You will never hear him utter one negative word about a family member. He is an encourager, an uplifter and the best listener. He makes me feel like my job as a mom is the most important job in the world. His children are his pride and joy, and he is theirs! He cherishes all of his grandchildren and great grandchildren. His biggest example in life is the way he loved his wife. God called Grandma home to heaven last December. They celebrated 60 years of marriage together. I have always told him that he makes me look forward to growing old with my husband. Their love story is one that would make Cinderella jealous.

We invited Papa to spend a few nights here with us, and everyone of us thoroughly enjoyed his visit! Right now, I am sitting here missing him. We had a special night singing some songs together, and listening to his stories. He has such a way of captivating the kids...

His laughter is contagious.

It was nice to just sit and be snuggled by an expert "snuggler."

The next day, Papa took me and the boys fishing. It doesn't matter that he is 83 years old,

because when you're fishing with your great grandchildren,

it somehow makes you a feel like a little boy again...

Listening to the sounds of the flowing water and the birds chirping was relaxing. We didn't have to be constantly talking. It was just nice to know that someone who loves you is standing right by your side.

Our boys will never forget the memories that were made. They will never forget how important Great Papa made them feel, and the time that was spent with them.

And, I will always remember the advice given to me that these years of parenting will fly by faster than I could ever imagine, so, "Cherish every moment!"

You didn't know that I watched you while you slept last night with tears in my eyes, thanking God for you. You may never fully know the love I have for you, because it's indescribable. Thank you for loving your family so much that they learned to pass that love on. Thank you for making every one of us feel special by taking interest in what is important to us. God gave this family the best present by giving us you! We love you!!!

Jun 14, 2008

Happy Father's Day

Dear Dad,
Thank you for taking me fishing and camping. I love talking with you, and just being with you. You are my best friend, Dad!
Happy Father's Day!

Dear Daddy,
You make me smile all the time. I love sitting at the breakfast table in the morning, cuz you always come give me hugs. You're the best hugger! I love you so much!!!!! Happy Father's Day!!

Dear Daddy,
I had fun camping. I love being buddies with you! You are the best daddy in the world! When I grow up, I'm gonna be just like you!

Dear Daddy,
You are the first boy I ever loved!

Dear Daddy,
I love to snuggle with you. Thank you for praying with me when I am afraid of the dark.

Daddy, you make us SO HAPPY!!!! WE LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jun 11, 2008

A Summer Storm

We had an unbelievable storm last night. It started off with lightning in the distance. It lit up the sky like fireworks. Joel and I went outside to watch the show. We were talking about how the book of Revelation says that from the throne of God there will be thunder and lightning.
Revelation 4:5 "Out from the throne come flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder."

There is something so spectacular about watching a storm. It's the same feeling you get when you stand on the beach and look out at the ocean...just pure awe...silent, reverential awe. These things can't just "appear." They had to have a Creator.
Jeremiah 10:13 "...He makes lightning for the rain."
Job 36:30 "Behold, He spreads His lightning about Him."

Last night, standing on the deck, looking up at the sky filled with flickering lights was a reminder that someday, we will be standing before almighty God. We will give an account for how we lived our lives.

There was complete blackness outside. I was just shooting in the dark. After 174 pictures of this,

I got this one!

It was so black outside, you couldn't see a thing. I snapped a shot just as the lightning lit up the entire mountain. It didn't capture the actual bolt, but you can see a beam in the background. It looks like I shot this in the day, but it was as black as that first picture.

(see how the wind moved the chairs? The wind was so strong!)

I can see the addiction in being a storm chaser. Joel had to practically drag me in off the deck when this bolt came a little too close for comfort.

Jun 10, 2008

One more fairy lagging behind...

"Sugar and spice and everything nice"

....and everything God has created her to be.

...Made in His image, made to glorify Him, made for this family.

Thank you, God, for little girls!

I know it's coming way quicker than I want it to, but someday, our little girl will be a grown woman...ready to leave the nest. I don't look forward to that day. Right now, I am cherishing every mommy moment I can get.

Our prayer for each of our children is that we equip them with the right tools to go forth in the world, and be a shining testimony for God. If God has it for her to marry, I pray he is a man who loves God with all of his heart and soul. If God has it for to have children, I pray she has the kind of daughter that she has been to me.

And if God has it for her to be single, I pray that she finds contentment and completeness in Him...living "happily ever after," being God's little princess.

Fairies in the Field

This picture illustrates the ultimate carefree life of a little girl...no worries, no fears, no house cleaning, no bills to pay, no boys...at least not yet. :o)

Almost makes you want to put on a fairy costume and go out frolicking, doesn't it?

Seriously, what do these two talk about?

The princess and her frog...

Imagine her surprise when this guy showed up!

"I want one, too!"

"Just how many cute guys are down here, anyway?"

Jun 9, 2008

"For the Beauty of the Earth"

This morning, we woke up in the clouds! What a breath-taking view it was to look around and be completely encircled in the clouds.

Only God can create such beautiful things! Look at the colors He uses. As Emma said, "God has the best box of crayons!"