Wednesday, December 24, 2008
A group of graduates, well established in their careers, were talking at a reunion and decided to go visit their old university professor, now retired. During their visit, the conversation turned to complaints about stress in their work and lives. Offering his guests hot chocolate, the professor went into the kitchen and returned with a large pot of hot chocolate and an assortment of cups - porcelain, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite - telling them to help themselves to the hot chocolate. When they all had a cup of hot chocolate in hand, the professor said: "Notice that all the nice looking, expensive cups were taken, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is normal for you to want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress. The cup that you're drinking from adds nothing to the quality of the hot chocolate. In most cases it is just more expensive and in some cases even hides what we drink. What all of you really wanted was hot chocolate, not the cup; but you consciously went for the best cups... And then you began eyeing each other's cups. Now consider this: Life is the hot chocolate; your job, money and position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain life. The cup you have does not define, nor change the quality of life you have. Sometimes, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the hot chocolate God has provided us. God makes the hot chocolate, man chooses the cups. The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything that they have. Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. And enjoy your hot chocolate.
Please pray for this family as it will be a long road to recovery. Pray for healing, strength, comfort, and that the father will be able to stay with the family and not have to go back to Iraq after his 2 week R&R. If you want to read more about this family so you can pray specifically they set up a website - http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/mckemey
When things like this happen it makes you realize all the things you have to be thankful for. All too often we complain or think our life is tough when in reality we have so much to be thankful for. I know that the Lord is the great physician and He has the power to do miraculous things for this family. Please take time to lift this family up and take time to thank God for all he has done for you.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Anyway, the kids had a jam packed week with Grammy and Poppy with lots of Christmas activities and fun. One of the funny stories mom told me was every night Beckham would brush his teeth look in the mirror and say, "I think I'm turning into an elf. Yep! I look like one more and more each day. My ears are starting to point." Mom said it was the funniest thing. Which I imagine it was.
Then there was Ainsley who acted like Santa's best friend when they went to see him at the restaurant up the road. When they pulled up Ainsley said that Santa wasn't there because she didn't see his sleigh. When they walked in and saw Santa Ainsley couldn't contain herself. She was smiling ear to ear, jumping and clapping. She asked Santa where his sleigh was and he said that Rudolph was sick so he couldn't take the sleigh out. Which must have made an impact on Ainsley because at night she prays for Rudolph to get better. The whole time they were eating dinner Ainsley was very concerned that Santa was not eating and asked him if he wanted to eat with them. He kindly declined and said Ms. Claus had made lasagna. Then she told someone to get him a drink because he looked thirsty. As my mom was relaying the story I wondered, was Ainsley really concerned for Santa or did she already figure out how to butter him up in hopes for more or better gifts?
At the dinner table last night both kids called out "get your elbows off the table this is not a horses table". Right when they said it I knew they picked that up from my dad. I remember him saying that when we were young. Ainsley also picked up the saying "Sugar Booger" from Aunt Megan. She thinks she is so funny when she says it.
There were many more stories but I'll have to post those later. I'll have to fill everyone in about our trip to Austin and Dallas.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Amazingly we were able to take a family picture and no one cried! That is a rare occurrence for our family. Every year while taking the Christmas card picture one of us would end up crying (usually me since I hate getting my picture taken and mom and dad would take 3 rolls of film just to get 1 good shot of all 5 of us)
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Close up of the bucket. There is a matching lid (in green) I forgot to put in the picture.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
B: Mom are there churches at Disney World because I didn't see any?
Me: I don't think there are Beckham.
B: Why not? There should be churches every where
Me: I agree
B: I think they should put one in Downtown Disney because church is important and Disney World should have one. It has everything else.
Me: I agree
B: It should go right next to the Princess store.
Me: Maybe when you are older you can start a church there.
B: OK, or we could move Disney by our house because we have a lot of churches here.
Me: True but that might be hard. Good idea though.
It touched my heart to hear him talk about how important church is and that he even realized there wasn't a church at Disney.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
When the park opened we ran to Dumbo to ride it first. We did a few more rides and then headed to Toon Town. (Toon Town opens a little after the rest of the park - I guess Mickey has to have time to get ready to see everyone). Anyway, we get there a few minutes before it opens and when they took down the ropes it reminded me of the Running of the Brides when they have that huge bridal gown sale in NY. People were running so fast to get to the character tents. Kids were running out of their shoes and parents were running over kids. It was unreal. We walked at a brisk pace and by the time we got to the princess tent the line for Tinker Bell and the fairies was already 90 min long!! We decided that it wasn't worth the wait to see the fairies and got in the princess line which was much shorter. I guess it was only the 2nd day the fairies had been in the park. Never before have you been able to get your picture with Tink and now that the fairies movie is out they have more fairies. Even when we found that out we still decided it wasn't worth the wait (I know all you Disney Die hards are cringing at our decision and are wondering how we could pass up a chance to meet the fairies). The first time we went to see the princesses (yes, I said first we went twice). Beckham was excited to see them but when we got there he changed his mind and didn't want to get his picture with them. So he stood back with Monte as Ainsley soaked it up. She was in heaven! She loved meeting the princesses and was so cute. Later in the day Beckham regretted his decision and asked to see the princesses. So we waited in line again and this time he met them all and was more than happy to give them each a hug. The rest of the day was spent on rides and in lines to see characters. It seemed like every time we were 2 people from the front of the line to see a character they would have to "go for a walk, go make some pies, go get a drink, or powder their nose". 10 minutes later they would be back. Ainsley loved seeing the characters - I think one day at Animal Kingdom Ainsley saw Goofy three different times. Here are some of the pictures of the kids with some of the characters.
Goofy and Pluto
Minnie in her Halloween Costume
Goofy in his Halloween costume. The kids figured out why Goofy is called Goofy because he was goofy.
Ainsley thought Donald Duck was so funny because she had a Mickey Mouse Pen and he would not sign her book with a Mickey Mouse pen. He threw it on the ground and stomped on it. She thought that was hilarious.
On Saturday morning we headed to Atlanta to catch up with some friends and head to the game. We first stopped in at the Varsity and had something to eat and have a frozen O (kind of like and orange cream slush). After filling our bellies with greasy food we went to the FSU Alumni tailgate hosted by the Atlanta chapter. As we walked around looking for our friends Monte and I started to realize how old we are getting. We finally met up with our friends, chatted for awhile and then headed into the game. We got to our seats which were right next to the band. Literally right next to the band. It was so loud. We looked at each other and commented on how loud it was which made us feel even older. I don't think I've ever sat that close to the band.
The game was a lot of fun but the outcome wasn't what we wanted. If you didn't see the game FSU rallied back from behind. With less than a minute left we were on the 3 yard line and were about to score and take the lead. On third down we ran right up the middle and fumbled the ball!!! It happened right in front of us. We saw the ball come out and felt like it was moving in slow motion. GT recovered the ball and we lost the game. Even though we lost we still had a great time. It was nice to spend time together. We both really appreciate mom and dad watching the kids so we could get away. Thanks mom and dad!!
Friday, November 14, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Spider man was at the Campbell Park Carnival.
Grandma and Beckham wading in the waves
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
The kids and I went to my parents this weekend because they didn't have school on Friday. On Friday we decided to go apple picking. I need to preface that before leaving home Monte joke with me about having fun apple picking but not to come home with 40 pounds of apples. He said it thinking - I'm going to give her an outrageous number so she gets my point of not coming home with a ton of apples. On the day of apple picking we got a little carried away. We try and go apple picking every year (except for last year when the orchard was out of apples) and I usually pick too many. In past years the apples have always been small and at the top of the trees. Luckily I'm tall so I could reach the ones everyone else couldn't. The orchard we went to this year had so many apples. They were low enough for the kids to pick. The apples were also huge in comparison to every other orchard I've been to. So we picked and picked and picked. We were having so much fun and the kids were having a ball. Ainsley was so funny she would find an apple and tell everyone "I found the perfect apple". She's pick it and then 2 minutes later she would say "I found the perfect apple". Needless to say we found a lot of perfect apples. Beckham had fun but once he picked a few bags he had more fun making sure we were following the rules. He was very concerned that we did not go beyond the ropes that said - No picking beyond this point. Any time any of us got close to the line he would make sure we knew not to cross it.
After picking a bunch of bags we head to the front to pay. At this orchard you don't pay per pound you pay per bag. The bags were $3.50 a bag. We figured since they were 3.50 a bag the bags were probably held about 5 pounds of apples. We counted up our bags and we had 10 (well, really 11 but that's another story). We made it back to "His Way Inn" (AKA my parents lake house) and unloaded the apples. As we were taking them out we commented that it looked like a lot of apples. Out of curiosity mom weighed one of the bags and it was 9.8 pounds!! That means we picked over 100 pounds of apples!!! Luckily Uncle Kirk and Aunt Jeannie were in town so we gave some to them, we gave some to my dad's sister, some to a friend, and some to mom's women's Bible Study. After splitting the remaining apples with mom I went home with 39 pounds. There was no way I was going to bring home a single ounce over 40 pounds especially after Monte joked about picking too many and not coming home with a crazy amount of apples like 40 pounds.
Since getting home I've made a huge batch of apple sauce, 2 large apple cakes (I used almost twice as many apples as it called for), apple pie, and of course we have all been eating apples for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Luckily these are really good apples. They are very juicy and the kids seem to love them. Good thing because they have to eat another 5 pounds each. I love that they are so big because it means less peeling when cooking with them (luckily I have the Pampered Chef apple peeler, corer, slicer) Even though we will be eating apple for the next few weeks we had a great time. We only wished Monte could be there.
I'll post pictures once mom or dad emails me some (hint, hint). I didn't have my camera but they got a bunch of good pics.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Beckham had faith that Monte would get home that night and he wasn't afraid to ask. I was the one that was afraid. Afraid that if we asked and it didn't happen Beckham would wonder why. Here I was trying to protect Beckham in reality he didn't need protecting. It was me that needed to reevaluate and learn a lesson from him. If God can create the heavens and the earth why couldn't he get Monte on a flight? My lack of faith seems silly if you think of it that way. Well, Beckham's prayer was answered. Monte got home last night. He even got home before bedtime (well, a little after but I kept the kids up).
Here's what I learned from Beckham: you need to have faith like a child, fear often holds us back from growing in our faith. I was afraid that if the prayer wasn't answered Beckham would wonder why. I need to get over those fears and ask what is on my heart.
Edited to say - It's not that I didn't think God couldn't get Monte on a flight. I knew He could I just didn't know if He would. I guess that is why it's called faith right? I needed to have more faith like Beckham.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
He kept asking me when she was going to be better so he could play with her. And today when we drove to school he said, I'm sad sissy isn't coming. I love the fact that he loves and cares for his little sister. Don't get me wrong he has his moments with her but it's nice to know deep down inside he really cares for her.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Friday, September 5, 2008
I think this is going to be a great year for both of them. Ainsley is going to love the social aspect of being around more kids her age and will continue to grow academically (she already knows almost all her letters). Beckham's class is going to be just what he needs. We didn't think he was ready for kindergarten and the preschool he has been going to started a transitional Kindergarten for kids that aren't quite ready for school yet. He only has 7 kids in his class including him and there are 2 teachers so the kids get lots of attention. The only issue we are going to have with school is Ainsley gets upset on Tuesdays and Thursdays when she doesn't go. She wants to go everyday which is a great problem to have.
They both LOVE school and their teachers. Beckham even asked me today why a kid in his class cries for his mom every morning. I told him - well, maybe he misses his mom. And his response was - I don't miss you. I was a little sad at that response but happy in a way that he likes school so much he doesn't mind I'm gone. It also shows me that he is becoming more independent and is growing up.
Lastly for the first week of school we made a pencil cake to celebrate the start of school.
The pencil cake we made
Friday, August 22, 2008
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
I've tried to tell him it's important to know scripture so when you are in a situation where you need guidance or peace you can recall it and feel better. Well, the other morning we had a big thunder storm roll through our neighborhood (which is rare because it never rains here). Beckham came in and woke me up and said, "mom, the thunder was scaring me so I said - 'The Lord is with me' and I wasn't scared anymore." How awesome is that!! Not only is he remembering scripture and the stuff we talk about but he is using it and living it. I just pray he continues to grow in his faith and dependence on God.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Thursday, July 31, 2008
1. Where is your cell phone? pocket
2. Your significant other? Monte
3. Your hair? long
4. Your mother? Godly
5. Your father? leader
6. Your favorite thing? music
7. Your dream last night? forget
8. Your favorite drink? water
9. Your dream/goal? success
10. The room you’re in? office
11. Your hobby? workout
12. Your fear? failing
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Austin
14. What you’re not? touchy
15. Muffins? blueberry
16. One of your wish list items? health
17. Where you grew up? NOVA
18. The last thing you did? dishwasher
19. What are you wearing? clothes
20. Favorite gadget? none
21. Your pets? none
22. Your computer? slow
23. Your mood? exhausted
24. Missing someone? yes
25. Your car? works
26. Something you’re not wearing? shoes
27. Favorite store? Target
28. Like someone? Husband
29. Your favorite color? yellow
30. When is the last time you laughed? today
31. Last time you cried? awhile
That was hard. Some answers would have been different but I couldn't think of how to make it one word. If anyone else wants to give it a try be my guest.
Monday, July 28, 2008
Gatlinburg can best be described as a red neck's Vegas. All of the velvet - just no Elvis. I had been when I was about Beckham's age so we had to park and see what had changed in 20 years. Not much - its still a blur of candy stores, t-shirt shops, those bears carved out of huge logs, and the Ripley's Believe it or not (yeah - believe it or not you just paid $17 to see a plastic replica of the bearded lady). Beckham of course was very impressed with the glitz. He was especially taken with the 30 foot King Kong in front of the wax museum. He had never seen King Kong so when I told him the story he said - "that is a very sad story - lets take pictures". Maybe he is heading for a career in journalism.
After we pryed ourselves away from the lights of Gatlinburg it was time to go to the Great Smokie National Park to set up camp for the night. We checked in with the park rangers and found our friends camp site. I had borrowed a 2 man tent from a friend at work. I remember thinking when I picked it up that it seemed really light - tent technology has come a long way. When we unrolled it I discovered that 2 man tent really should be more like a 2 smurf size tent. I think when they size tents they still must be using dimensions from the 1700s when the average height was 5 ft. Even Beckham felt a little cramped in there.
After setting up the 2 smurf size tent we met up with our friends and looked around for animals. We spotted a huge woodpecker and some deer. Then it was time for a traditional camp dinner. Beckham had selected a hot dog main course, fritos on the side, and a Smore for dessert. While he enjoyed the Smore - he quickly became impatient with the process and said "Dad can we just eat the marshmallows out of the bag - this takes too long". Then it was time for stories around the camp fire. And of course that night he insisted that we both sleep at the feet end because that was where the screen was an we could watch for falling stars and bears. We were wedged in there cheek-to-cheek for hours. I had forgotten that feeling the next morning after sleeping on the ground then getting the first waft of bacon on an open fire. It really is a great way to wake up.
In the morning there was a deer walking through our campsite and Beckham was looking to feed him poptarts but the deer didn't seem interested. Then it was time to pack up and do a few little park hikes on the way out. We saw some rapids and few waterfalls. It really is a very scenic park. Beckham especially loved the waterfalls. Although he quickly decided that instead of the ranger hike at 11 - he preferred to go see King Kong again and a McDonalds happy meal. So with that we were off for some fast food and then the four hour trip home for a much needed shower.
Bag of Marshmallows - $1.19
New sleeping bag - $30
2 tanks of gas - $86
Spending two days with Beckham on his first camping trip - priceless
Sunday, July 20, 2008
On Friday we went blueberry picking. There is a farm a mile down the road from my parents. It was a lot of fun and the kids had a ball picking them. According to Beckham there was a contest to see who could pick the most. (you can tell he has a lot of Scott in him). We picked blueberries for a little over an hour. We were having so much fun we would have picked longer but we already had picked 8 pounds!! I'm trying to figure out what to do with all of them. The rest of the day was spent in the pool.
Saturday was an adventure for our memory bank. We headed out to the Jockey Lot (AKA a flea market) hoping to find treasures. Once we got there (1 hour and 45 minutes later) we were a little disappointed at all the junk. Monte kept saying shopping on the streets in Mexico would have been a step up and he was probably right. By the way, it typically doesn't take almost 2 hours to get there but the Internet had the wrong address which we put in our GPS. We were driving along and all the sudden "Emma" (that's what we call our GPS voice) said, "you have reached your destination" we all looked around, looked at each other and busted out laughing. We were in the middle of no where. There was nothing for miles. We decided to drive down the road where "emma" said was our destination only to come across a sign that said "end of county maintenance" and led to a gravel road. After calling the number for the Jockey Lot we realized the Internet said South 29 and it was supposed to be north 29. North and South make a big difference. Keep in mind the kids are hungry, Ainsley is crying and we had no clue where we were or where we were going. But we got there and did find a golf bag for Monte and some "junk" (I mean treasures) for the kids. The rest of the day was spent in the pool and on the lake.
Sunday was a bit of the same - church, boating, pool then we packed up and headed home. Letting the kids swim for a few hours before leaving is the way to go. They were so exhausted they fell asleep before leaving my parents neighborhood.
We had a great time and I'll post pics if Meggo emails me some (or you can check out her blog and see pics from the weekend.).