Saturday, June 27, 2009

Happy 32nd Birthday!

In recognition of my wife's 32nd birthday, I have hijacked her blog to write 32 things about her. She did the same for me at 30, and its only fair that I return the favor. Enjoy!

1. She has never met a stranger.
2. I met her at Auburn in her cousin's double wide trailer.
3. On average, she says at least 4,000 words a day.
4. She got attacked by a bird while walking to class in front of several classroom windows in Auburn.
5. Her memory is impeccable.
6. She doesn't know how to close drawers or cabinet doors, which leads me to believe that she may have been raised in a barn.
7. She wears her heart on her shoulder.
8. She finds joy in the little things in life.
9. She makes every bed in the house everyday.
10. She cleans the house before we leave on vacation.
11. She makes the best sandwiches.
12. She loves the beach and the pool.
13. She mows the grass for me occasionally and likes it.
14. She always has home projects that she wants me to do.
15. She takes a bath every night before she goes to bed.
16. She loves to ride in the car with the windows down and the radio blaring.
17. She can read a book faster than anybody I've ever seen.
18. She married me barefoot on the beach in Jamaica.
19. She has more friends than I can keep up with.
20. She can talk on the phone longer in one sitting than anybody I've ever known.
21. She never puts anything back in the same place that she got it, but she always knows where everything is.
22. We used to go rent boats at a public lake in Auburn and just troll around.
23. She loves fresh vegetables.
24. She has a lead foot when driving on the interstate.
25. She can throw together an award-winning dinner in 30 minutes.
26. She dreams about living in Auburn one day.
27. She loves Auburn football more than me.
28. She cherishes family and friends above all.
29. She gets carsick, and takes naps on long drives.
30. She's an amazing multi-tasker.
31. I have never had to question whether she loves me.
32. I still haven't figured out why she married me, but I'm thankful everyday that she did.

Happy 32nd Birthday, Babe!!!!!!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Fruit Pizza

If you have ever been with me at a birthday party or gathering, fruit pizza was probably there! Either provided by me, sister or mother. It is the best dessert for summer.


1 package (the kind that is in a tube)of sugar cookie dough
1/2 cup of sugar
1 80z package of cream cheese
1 tsp of vanilla
Fruit fresh
Fresh Fruit

Preheat oven to directions on cookie package. Spray pan with cooking spray. Slice cookies and place around pizza pan. Leave about 1/2 inch in between each cookie. When it bakes the crust will look like the above. Let it cool completely. Mix cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth with blender. Spread on top of crust. Place in the refrigerator to harden. Then slice your fruit and place on top. Sprinkle with fruit fresh so it will look pretty, longer. Cover lightly with aluminum foil to keep in your refrigerator.


For the fourth of July you can do blueberries and strawberries! Enjoy.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Summer Days in Pictures

We go to the pool in our neighborhood almost every day. I am not kidding. It keeps the kids entertained. No whining. No fighting with each other. And all I see of son if usually this!
Not kidding you when I say we stay all day. My kids do not nap so we pack a lunch a cooler full of food and drinks for the whole day.

This is my first full summer with two kids with no swimmies. Life is Great. I get to sit and watch. I only have to get in when I want to! AHHHHH!

Our neighborhood pool is full of friend for the kids. You never know who might bring who. Son is so pumped to play with older boys from our church or school. This is son up to no good...about to dump cold water on some poor child.

Daughter has learned to do so much in the water this year. She has self taught her self to flip forwards and backwards. Bless her heart, she is so little she still cannot do a handstand. She just floats up. I told her 10 more pounds and she could do it. I figure she will be in 4th grade.
The Master Diver. The worst dive known to men.
This is son "diving." If you have not had the privilege to watch first hand, you are missing a pee in your pants moment.
Now that is form!
We went to have a "funeral" for Sandy. She was buried at Mikey Fresh's farm. These animals helped get my kids mind off of dogs...
The rear of Jen (who is very pregnant) and the Donkey's.

Leah

Dixie.

Eden
Swirley Girl
Sandy and Macee's resting place. Macee's has flowers planted on top. Sandy's has the picture daughter drew her.

Husband just got a call from Brian. His daughter's test results came in and she has type A.l.l. That is good news and has an 80% treatment rate. Keep praying for this sweet family. Emily will be having a spinal tap tomorrow to see if the Leukemia is in her spinal fluid. That will determine what type of treatment she will receive.

Prayer Request

I have a special prayer request for Husband's coworker and friend Brian Skelding. His oldest daughter was diagnosed with Leukemia yesterday. Her name is Emily. She is on the left of this picture. I ask that whoever reads this to please lift up this family in their prayers. I am wanting to start some kind of blog with updates and specific prayer request for this family. I will keep you updated as I find out more information. Pray specifically today as Emily will undergo a bone marrow aspiration.

You might remeber Brian as a member of Team Roach in the Jingle Bell Run this past December. Brian and his wife Michele's family both do not live here. Michele home shcools all three girls. Pray for them and their other children as they begin the road of treatment. The doctors are optimistic that they have caught it early.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A little happy

I needed to post a happy post. Tired of being sad when there are so many other things to smile about. Like Sister and I have 5 kids that are all without swimmies! Look at Shep in this picture! This makes me smile.
I had to take daughter for a recheck of her eyes. Poor Tyler ended up being checked out by the eye doctor due to allergies and constant red eyes. He had his eyes dilated and eyelids rolled up. He did not cry or panic. Then he sported these glasses all day. He and husband even did my grocery shopping with the glasses. Husband said he looked over and son was just pushing the buggy wearing his glasses. I wish I did not care what people thought of how I looked. This makes me smile.
Told you all day he wore these things. Notice he is now big boy and sleeps with no shirt like daddy. To quote the Brakefields....suns out, guns out. This makes me smile.
People thought I was crazy when I got another dog this past fall. I am so thankful husband let me. Because now we just have one...Yoders. He seems just fine being king of the house. You should know he is on husband's side of the bed with tennis ball not too far out of his reach. This makes me smile.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Just sad


My poor kids. This has not been easy. I took the kids to say their goodbyes to Sandy this morning. She was on a lot of medication and actually looked better then yesterday. But the symptoms of the stroke were still present. Not complete control of her back legs and eyes go nervously back and forth due to some brain damage. Son went to a friends house to play after seeing her. Daughter and I went back to see her again and she died around 1 o'clock.
I have had a dog my whole life. I have grieved everyone of them. This time they know and understand the finality of death. It is something you want to protect your children from but in the end it is life. I would much rather them taste the sting of death with their pet then with a loved one. Daughter told her friend, "God has a big blanket and He will cover Sandy and Macee up with!"
I got Sandy when I was a freshman at Auburn. She was the first dog that I had full responsibility for and we had almost 14 years together. I have had her longer then I have had Husband. She was the dog that all the vets and all the groomers loved. She is the only dog I have had that never played with a toy. She was not a toy dog. We always said if Sandy died first Macee would have been heartbroken. We did not know Sandy would be the heartbroken one. She has grieved for her friend. I believe a piece of Sandy died when Macee did...
Mother was very close to Sandy. Sandy lived with her during some of my time at Auburn. They had a very special bond. Mother is just as devastated as we are...
Any kid that ever came to my house loved Sandy. She was a please pet me dog. Always pawing at you to pet her.
Today Sandy will be buried next to her lost friend Macee. I think a little piece of me will be buried tonight. I am thankful for these two dogs and for teaching me how to love unconditional.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Sweet Sandy

Please lift up sweet Sandy in your prayers. She had a stroke sometime in the night last night. She could not move her back two legs. She would not eat or drink. She is at the vet and getting medicine to hopefully reverse the symptoms of the stroke. The vet called tonight and said she had eaten after getting the medicine. We still don't know about the use of her legs. The kids were really upset today. Macee died not even six months ago. Sandy will be 14 this year and has lived a long life. She misses her dear friend. As for me the mommy roach . . . I am just kind of numb.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Freezing Green Beans

I am a blog stalker. I like to stalk for new recipes. And now that summer is here we will be spending a lot of time putting up vegetables. Sister and I spent our summers doing this exact thing. Mostly she and I shelled purple hull peas and had purple fingers all the time. It is fun to teach my kids about how the vegetables get from the dirt to the table. On Friday morning we put up a 5 gallon bucket of green beans. Everybody has their own opinion on how you should freeze your vegetables. This is my favorite way and I thought I would share
First before even cleaning them I snap of the ends. Then I snap into bite size pieces and place in a collander for cleaning. I do this in front of the television most of the time. But this morning the kids were busy coloring in the kitchen so I pulled up a stoll and took over the sink. After a good cleansing, I put them in a large pot and cover with cold water. I then bring them to a boil for 3 minutes. No more then 3 minutes. They will turn a bright green.Then immediately I put them back in the collander and into an ice cold bathe. I pour ice cubs and cold water on them so they cool quickly. Then I drain them and dry them off. Some people like paper towels but I like good old hand towels. Gently pat them dry and place into a good quality freezer bag. Don't skimp on freezer bags. You will regret it in January. I like to put mine in small freezer bags so when I go to cook dinner I can grab just enough for my family of four.

Wiley's Beans and Peas Seasoning added to your fresh green beans (or even canned) will make you think you are eating Cracker Barrell green beans. I love this stuff and it makes all the difference in the world with green beans. You can get it at Publix and Wal-Mart. It is usually sold near the fresh vegtables.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Ten Dollars


Trying to keep this little girl out of the neighborhood pool for a couple of days is difficult. Son is at basketball camp and she is in need of entertainment. So I spent 10 dollars on some entertainment today. While I cut grass, she did this...and poor Yoda was the victim.
Doesn't he look thrilled. It did not end well for him. He ended up getting a full out bath in the baby pool. I could not believe he did not try to jump out of the pool. I think he was so hot, he just chilled.

And who says Yorkie-poos can't surf? This dog has skills.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bless her little heart

She had to get new tubes and adenoids. It took about 45 minutes. She ended up having to get an IV and tube down a throat. So she was a little pitiful. The nurse said she talked the whole time in recovery. We were not surprised. She has eaten her weight in pop-cycles and seems to be just fine. Despite blood coming from her nose and ear! Thank you for all the prayers.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Little Ears Round 2


This little face gets some new tubes tomorrow at 6:15am. We would appreciate your prayers. This will be her second set of tubes. And as you can see in the picture keeping her above water is not possible. So I am looking for advice on ear plugs! Will let you know how it she does..

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Service


The mastermind.

The registration table! LOVE YOU.

Tyler and his crew

Bre could not do it without her!
Me getting to talk to missionaries in Africa and tell them how much money they would be getting!

I just wanted to share with anyone who reads this why I think Children's Ministry is such an awesome place to serve. We just finished an awesome week of Vacation Bible School here at Westwood. For those of you that love numbers, we have numbers. We had 79 decisions made to ask Jesus to be their boss of their life! We had and average of over 1200 people at VBS each day. Over 850 elementary students registered. These amazing kids scraped couch cushions, asked neighbors and brought in piggy banks to send over $2600 to missionaries in Africa. A 2nd grader was able to collect boxes of toothpaste, toothbrushes and sugarless gum for children in Africa. Six parents made decisions to accept Christ. One parent walked through the doors on Wednesday and accepted Christ in the Library of the church.
For me it is not about numbers, it is about the stories. The individual stories of the lives changed. Friday is the day we pull all the children who filled out decision cards and bring them downstairs to talk individually with a decision partner. We answer questions and pray with them individually. Watching a wave of mostly wet (from game time) children come down those stairs is exciting. It is the story of a little boy who was on fire for God and told me he thought he could feel God with him all day so much he thought he could touch him. It is about a little boy who comes from a lost home and does not come to church but was SAVED. It is about the shy baseball player who made a stand to accept Christ. It is most exciting when you know them. Friday, I watched 3 girls from my Awana class walk down those stairs. My heart swelled until I thought it would explode. To know these girls personally and to get to hear them tell me what being a Christian means and to explain Jesus to me and then to say I want to ask him to come in my heart and start a relationship with him...folks that is priceless. Friday night I sat and wondered if some never get that opportunity to lead someone to Christ. I remember a time in my life where the idea of praying someone to Christ was frightening. By serving I have learned that I am a tool. I am just a present individual and God does all the work. I have sat with some of those girls in AWANA a many a Wednesday night...but God chose VBS as the time to prompt their hearts. I felt beyond honored to get to witness them make their design.
Matt Haines recently spoke to us children workers one night and said, they may not even remember your name one day but for now your presence is enough and it matters.
And I have served long enough to know serving isn't always full of moments that make you feel good because serving is not about you. It is about HIM. It is all about HIM. And He teaches me more through service then He does through any area of my life. When I saw those children coming down the stairs, my first thought was how as a parent am I doing to raise children who will one day may walk down those stairs and be saved. It is the moments with these kids when I am reminded of childlike faith, uncomplicated and honest.
The people that serve in this area of the church are so dedicated and fun. I could not even begin to name names of all who give themselves so freely. These volunteers come in all ages. There are mothers, fathers, singles and grandparents. It takes a world of volunteers to make children's ministry happen and God sends them all. I am so glad He called me. So why not you?

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Disney Post

Long overdo...I will upload some pics of the thousand I took. We drove which is a story in itself but we were amazed how well the kids did in the car. Our condo was wonderful and the kids loved the pool. You can take my kids to a hotel and they don't care...just give them a pool. Things I learned on the trip.
1. Disney World is where kids dreams come true, not adults.
2. You don't know tired until you got to a park in 100 degree weather with 2 small children.
3. Husband melted down a lot sooner then the kids...he does not like crowds. On one occasion we had to leave a park because he ran over a lady with the stroller. On purpose!
4. Take a stroller...a big one. My 6 year old rode the whole time. He did not care what he looked like in that stroller and we never lost him. :)
5. Best 30 dollars I ever spent went on a backpack cooler for the parks.
6. I am a professional fast pass getting, backpack toting, stroller parking and snack packing momma.
7. Seeing your daughter see a princess character is priceless. (Her hair not being brushed that day and wearing something she picked out for the photos is bearable.)
8. Taking your son to Star Wars Weekend at Hollywood Studios is worth it.
9. Seeing American Idol winner, Kris Allen, in person was more exciting then expected.
10. Daughter getting car sick 50 miles into the trip on the way home was memorable but the car seat got thrown away.
11. If you go to Disney World, allow 2 weeks to recover.
12. If you to to Disney World, allow 2 years for your bank account to recover.
13. Toothfaires come to Disney World. Just ask son, he lost his first tooth.
14. Wear tennis shoes to the parks and threaten your husband to photo you from the knee down.
15. Sunscreen stains white tops...good bye JCrew favorite top.
16. Make your child ride roller coasters even when they cry.
17. Hold on to your smallest child(daughter) because they might fall out of roller coasters.
18. Watch some fireworks from your back porch instead of going back to the park.
19. Pack light...
20. Live, Laugh, Enjoy and cry...that is how dreams come true.



Animal Kingdom
TREX restaurant in Downtown Disney.

Go with good friends to Disney World.


The big cheese.
Lost tooth




This is what we like to call done.