Friday, December 11, 2009
The other day I had my blog's Holiday playlist blaring from the computer when Chris Rice's Instrumental version of Be Still My Soul came to the top of the shuffle list. (It's #3) Kolby said "That one is pretty, but not really Chirtmasy. Did you put it on there on accident?"
No Kolby, I didn't.
If there is ever a time in the year when I feel the need to be still, it is in the month of December. So overwhelming is this season for me! You know the hustle and bustle we all get caught up in no matter how we try to slow down and take it all in. The parties, the presents, the lists, the decorating, the fight to get it all done... I love it and don't love it all at the same time. Sometimes it seems the good and bad of life are amplified by this season and I get all jumbled up inside. So Yes. In the midst of Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire, Frosty the Snowman, and Santa Clause Coming to Town, it's good to Be still My Soul.
Christ was born to save a fallen world. Maybe that is why both the best and the worst can be so clearly seen this time of year. So if you are overwhelmed with joy or sorrow this Christmas Season, Be Still.
That's right! We did it! Rob and I finally agreed to be dog owners again. The kids have wanted a puppy ever since Berkley died. I just was not ready. And frankly neither were my kids. BUT I think Rhett and Kolby are old enough to share the responsibilities of pet ownership. So this year when Rhett said Mom all I really want for Christmas is a dog, I couldn't think of a reason to say no. After lots of research and internet searching we found our puppy. She was in Northern Arkansas so it was a beast of a trip to get her! But I took the kids out of school and we got to spend two nights with good friends on the way so it wasn't so bad. So here she is. Our little "Lady." Merry Christmas to us! :)
Thursday, December 03, 2009
For those who haven't known us long, you need to read this post (skip down to the highlighted part) to understand part of why I'm so proud of Kolby. She's come a long way baby!
Wednesday, December 02, 2009
We are getting a puppy for Christmas this year! Actually the kids and I are leaving to get her tomorrow after school. She is in Northern Arkansas. We will stay with my friend Susan 2 nights in Little Rock and hope to be back home Saturday night.
The attached picture was taken by the current owner on 11-28-09. The puppy is a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who will be 10 weeks old on Thursday. Isn't she adorable!!! Those big eyes just did me in. We are all over the top excited, the kids especially!
We have a long list of names for her but have decided not to name her until we have her home. Rob is working on his last final of the semester this weekend and won't be going with us. Wish me luck as I will spend 18+ hours driving with 3 kids and a puppy this weekend. Come back to see more puppy pics soon!
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Saturday, November 21, 2009
This is a post about this day 15 years ago.
15 years ago today was not a relief.
It was not what I prayed for.
It was hard.
My heart broke in ways I had not expected
And I was angry that she was gone.
Angry that she had to live all bottled up in that body that didn't work for 10 years.
Sad that people who saw her didn't really understand.
They didn't, no they couldn't, know her.
She couldn't easily show how smart and funny she was.
You had to invest in her first.
You had to be with her and give up what you expected of this little girl.
At first glance it seemed like a hopelessly unbalanced relationship
and it was.
But not in the way I expected.
Being around her I was privileged to learn her quiet truths.
She loved deeply and was loyal.
Her wicked sense of humor was so real and present that I had to laugh
despite the crazy circumstances
or occasional foul smells
that came with being around her.
I knew then,
but not as much as I do now,
that I was one of the lucky ones.
No not lucky,
just very blessed.
Not many got to lay lulled beside her singing songs,
playing with strands of golden hair,
praying she was falling asleep,
only to be jolted to the reality of her sudden escape
by the harsh onslaught of water beds waves!
Or while feeding her
Look away for just a second
and be reminded how fast she was
as bits of food
flew across the room.
Time with her was seldom boring.
A better example of a Godly family
could not be found.
I got to see it up close.
Truly blessed I tell you!
I don't think everyone knew how much love
her mother poured into her
or how much sleep she lost in the process.
But that Mom was a constant fortress,
standing tall to meet every obstacle
never considering how much easier it would have been
to sit a few battles out.
Not many saw how her brother struggled to love
in the face of the injustice of
his baby sister's condition
and all that her struggles meant for his life.
Smart, cool, quiet, very competitive
He tried to look bored or annoyed,
but he loved her so much that
he couldn't help but show it.
Her Daddy loved her intensely.
When he looked at her I often wondered if he noticed
that she had "issues."
He was fun, loving, and sincere.
Did he realize how damaged his daughter was?
He treated her like she was
the greatest little girl
in the world
and he was content with her.
And then there was the baby.
Oh he was a joy! Born in the thick of it.
Made his Mama lay in bed for months,
which was harder on her than anything.
He was a mess at times, but overall
he was a happy, smiling,
toe head boy who had no idea that his sister
or her circumstances
should be any other way.
Everyone loved that sweet boy!
They were a great little family and they made me,
and many other sitters who came to help,
feel like we were a part of the family.
I loved being around them.
I loved their little girl.
And then, she was gone.
Her death should not have been the shock it was to me.
Given her circumstances, most expected death.
It had been bad before, really bad,
but she got better.
That day she didn't.
I knew it was serious.
I only left to take an algebra test
I had to take it,
I called to check on her from school
as soon as I left class.
The nurse told me that she had expired.
Before my brain could recall what it meant
to medically expire, I blurted out
"Will she be OK?"
That poor nurse didn't know what to say.
She just told me to get there as soon as I could.
Then it hit me.
I don't remember hanging the up the phone,
or driving to the hospital.
I do remember standing in the hospital elevator
thinking that the nurse had to be wrong
until the steel doors opened to
Even after seeing her parents tell her lifeless body goodbye
as she lay in the hospital bed,
I still didn't get that she was gone.
The shock set in,
but the tears and pain didn't come until later
at the funeral home.
Out of habit I instinctively reached
to feel her forehead for fever.
I was shocked at the cold and firm tissue I encountered.
In that unforgetable horrible moment,
I knew she was gone.
Fighting the pain that suddenly ripped my heart open
I fought not to jerk my hand away from her.
Tears streaming I mouthed the words I felt her mom needed to hear.
I didn't lie.
She did look beautiful and peaceful,
but it wasn't Megan anymore.
She wasn't there.
A few minutes later a well wisher
who didn't really know her,
but knew of her and how hard her life had been
suggested to me that we were all better off.
The pain gave birth to an anger so intense
that it strained all my 24 years of will power
to keep from popping her in the jaw.
I had never felt grief and anger so intensely intertwined as I did that day.
My anger reached past the woman at the funeral home all the way to Heaven.
How could he take her?
She was only 10!
She wasn't supposed to go!
How could he do that to her parents and her brothers?
If it hurt me, a sitter, so deeply,
what would it do to her family?
How could he let her slip away from us like that?
On a Tuesday?
I had unknowingly
entered that unearthly process we call grieving.
15 years later, I'm not angry anymore. It's still so sad to me what happened that day, but time has tempered the sadness with love, gratitude, and maybe even a drop of wisdom.
That family is still incredible.
Before my very eyes I watched as God slowly but steadily stitched their broken hearts back together with the steel cables of his love and grace. They are stronger and more in love with Him than ever.
The older brother is a young father in love with his sweet wife. The hospital visits, doctors, and medical equiptment that were such a part of his childhood because of her must have had some bearing on the path he choose for his life. He is a doctor, a healing man of God.
The baby is a young man who continues to capture the hearts of those who know him. He was in an accident that could have killed him a few years ago. After the accident, memories of that painful day we lost his sister came rushing to the surface reminding me of how real the pain of loosing her was. But the baby who had grown into a fine young man fully recovered. He is still a joy.
The Mom.. what an incredible woman she is! She became a teacher and continues to weld her true grit woman of God strength into all who are blessed enough to sit at her feet. I have not been able to see her much but when I do see her, I am amazed at how she is still so young at heart and full of love and life. I am blessed to have known her.
The Daddy with the broken heart is a preacher. Always was. I don't know how he did it those first years. But he shared his grief and blended his love for his daughter into the message of God he had always carried. The message just became more real and undeniable to those who heard and continue to hear him. My husband ans I were truly honored and blessed when he agreed to do the honors at our wedding. Again I don't get to see or hear him regularly, but I keep up with him through the world wide web and am never surprised when I hear God words to me come from him.
Over these 15 years God has taken the bitterness of losing her and laced it with the joy that special girl brought to those who knew her and the blessing of knowing how one small broken girl could come to mean so much to so many.
In 15 years I have seen that He can speak through one with few words.
He can give through one with many needs.
He can mend through one who is broken.
He can heal through the sick.
He blesses me in ways I do not deserve
and loves me in ways I can not fathom
while assuring me that we are each worth it all.
I love Him more for bringing that sweet crooked smile into my life
and for all he has done since he took her back.
Today I smile at the memory of that sweet girl as my heart silently screams THANK YOU towards Heaven for all He has done through her.
Love you Megan!
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Ok. Not really. But growing up in San Angelo not far from ASU (Angelo State) I was very familiar with the men's and women's highrises. I went to church really close to these two buildings and could see them from the church play ground. From the time I was a very little, I called them the twin high-risers, or the girl and the boy.
This morning they took the girl (AKA the women's highrise or University Hall) down in a big way. They blew her up, or in, or whatever happens when a building is imploded. Here is a clip from youtube. Sorta makes me sad. Goobye old girl! Wonder if the boy will miss her?
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Here's is the deal. I have not blogged much in the last year. However I come to this blog everyday because of that little playlist over there. It's my music. I don't own an Ipod (though both my kids do) and the stereo in our house is so old I'm not even sure it works. So this computer, this playlist is my music.
This playlist is so me. I love every song for one reason or another. I used to try to organize it but a few months ago Ijust put it on random play because there is no way I can order this collection. It's a crazy mix I know. Show tunes, country, Christian, pop, rock. Today I almost added a rap thing, but nah. (Tops Drop) There would be even more on my playlist but I am limited to what they have on the web sight. They have tons of music on Project Playlist, but they don't have EVERYTHING because it's free. You can't get everything for free!
Anyway, I love music. I can't play a musical instrument (beyond 2nd grade piano) and my voice is just so-so. BUT nothing touches me or speaks to me like music.
Today my hear t is heavy for two moms I know. Both are facing very different, but very heart wrenching circumstances. When I clicked on my playlist the first song was David Crowders Never Let Go (not to be confused with Matt Redman's You Never Let Go which I also love and is on this playlist.)
The words of this song just sunk into my heart. The unspoken prayers I have been sending up for these two moms are far from answered, but this song help ease the ache I feel for them. We serve an amazing God. When we can not see him, he still sees us. He never lets go. He will hold these two ladies who are on my heart, and he will hold onto me, through it all. Everything. He can handle life when we can't. Amazing. Blessing. Healing. Saving. Easing. Completing. Empowering. Assuring.
Thank you Father!
Here are the words to David Crowder's Never Let Go. (It's #49)
When clouds veil sun
And disaster comes
Oh, my soul. Oh, my soul
When waters rise
And hope takes flight
Oh, my soul. Oh, my soul. Oh, my soul
You I know
You never let go
You never let go
You never let go
You never let go
When clouds brought rain
And disaster came
Oh, my soul. Oh, my soul
When waters rose
And hope had flown
Oh, my soul Oh, my soul
Oh, my soul Oh, my soul
Oh, what love, oh, what love
Oh, my soul
Perfect love that never lets go
Oh, what love, oh, what love
Oh, what love, oh, what love
In joy and pain
In sun and rain
You're the same
Oh, You never let go
You never let go
You never let go
You never let go
You never let go
Be blessed today knowing wherever you find yourself, HE will never let go. :)
Thursday, September 03, 2009
( Please realize I am preaching to myself here. If anything, I need to heed these words more than anyone I know which is why I felt the need to write it out. I in no way want to come across like I have the world figured out...FAR FROM IT!!!)
Here are some random thoughts that won't stop rambling around in my head. I don't want to bore my facebook friends with them in multiple status updates, so I'm going to post them here. Then hopefully I can focus on the 300 other things I need to do before I go to bed tonight. :)
The longer I live the more I believe that no politician is ever as good or as bad as they are made out to be. There is bad in the best of us and good in the worst of us.
Hate is never a good thing.
Praying for your enemies is the best thing you can do for the both of you.
When I was a Sophomore or Jr at ACU (it's all a blur!) I switched my major from Political Science /Communication to Education/Communication. A year later I was on a committee with one of my Poly Sci profs. He asked why I switched. I explained that the more I learned about government and politics the more disenfranchised I became. For me, politics seemed too much of an ethical mind field. I did not think I could ever be a good mother and wife if I had to devote so much time to such an occupation / field. He laughed and said I might be right, that many Christians felt politics were "too dirty" for their lives. But then he said something that has sorta haunted me all these years. He said something like "Politics may be dirty, but if all moral, ethical people decide it's too dirty and steer clear of it, who does that leave running the country?"
Maybe that's why I am not a fan of bashing any political figure no matter what I think of them. They put themselves out there in a place I was not willing to go. Holding someone accountable and questioning them is just as affective ) when it is done in a respectful manner... actually I think it is more affective. (Or is it effective?)
I don't remember who I heard say "A lady never stoops to discuss politics and religion in place of service and salvation," but I think they were right.
Most people like to label others. Far right, far left, ultra conservative, flaming liberal, Pro, anti, for, against... HOWEVER both extremes have this in common. If you want to make them mad, just decide not to take a side or wear a label. Or to really rile them up point out the good in both sides. Don't do this unless you want to feel the full wrath from both sides though. (Ask John McCain about that! )
Nothing stirs up deep emotions faster than thinking my children are being taken advantage of or threatened.
I can be nice to most all people, but it's really hard to like some of them.
Nothing is ever as simple or as complicated as I think it is.
Rhett may turn into a weather man or a climate scientist because Mother Natures seems to reek havoc on his birthday parties. Last year it was a hurricane 100's of miles away that forced us to move the day before.. this year it could be rain. Poor little guy has been up by 6:30am the last two days watching the weather and giving us bi-hourly rain chance percentage updates. :( Please don't rain Friday night!!!
I loved walkng past the butterfly garden in the Panther Patch on the way to Rhett's class meeting tonight. It makes me happy to think Rhett gets to see this everyday and know what his Mom was doing all those months and hours last year when she helped make it. I did have to hold myself back from going out there to put the umbrellas and flags up though. OY! Letting go has never been easy for me, but I am going to do it with a smile on my face. YES. I. AM.
Few things smell better than chocolate chip cookies fresh from the oven or worse than burnt chocolate chip cookies "fresh" from the oven. We have smelled both here tonight!
I'm sorta peeved that Katherine Higel gave away what will happen on Gray's on September 24th...but sorta excited too!
I am trying to decide which Twilight book is my favorite. It's too hard. But I do know my favorite part to read...the almost end of New Moon. Will November 20th just hurry up and get here already! :)
I will never go to bed if I don't get up and get with it.
Night, night computer!
Tuesday, September 01, 2009
This blog is my place to write all those cute kid things down so I don't forget them. Lately (well for about the last year) I haven't been very good at that. SOOOO I'm going to start now with this post.
Ella Kate cracks me up about 200 times a day. The girls is just funny stuff.
Today she is starting back to Mother's Day Out and she and I both CAN NOT WAIT!
Yesterday we were at Home Depot having some paint mixed. She started talking to the paint mix man about pink being her color and "my Mom likes brown." (I was getting test samples of tan/taupe) As we were leaving, out of the blue Ella Kate waved and yelled back "I won't be here tomorrow because I'm going to my school." The paint mix man and I got a kick out of that!
I was telling EK that she was going to have a new teacher this year for MDO "Oh that is so sad. Ms. Jerra is really going to miss me!"
Ella Kate is having fun telling us when we say a word "we don't say." For instance the other day I was driving to soccer and the water thermos tipped over, rolled across the van and started leaking when I made a turn. I said "Oh that stupid water bottle is leaking everywhere!"
Last night at the pizza place Ella Kate was getting her groove on in the booth and said very loudly "I'm shaking my booty, not my boobies. My boobies are too little. Mommy has boobies but we don't talk about boobies. We don't talk about anybody's boobies because it's not nice. Daddy do you talk about boobies?" OY!
Rhett on shopping with me in Ikea " I feel like I've been walking around inside HGTV for hours!"
Kolby on the neccessity of cell phones...
You are STILL. NOT. GETTING. A. CELL. PHONE. Kolby Sue!
Thursday, August 06, 2009
Thursday, June 25, 2009
EK will be three in a week or so! Can you believe that??? I have so many Ella Kate stories that I need to write down before we forget them. But for now I'm just going to post some of these pics taken to put on her "Dora" birthday invitations from Wal-Mart's photo center. Before you go thinking I am creative to do a photo invite, I must confess. They did have any Dora fill-in-the-blank invitations at any store I have been to in the last month. What's up with that???? So we did the photo ones. (The impromptu after VBS photo session to get ONE good picture could be a whole other blog post.) Since we didn't get that one picture, I made the collage above for the invitation. Below are the pics that didn't make the collage. I think we managed to catch the many sides of Ella Kate's personality in these pics. OH that girl!
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
I'm back! (And I found fun new blog skins! :) Thanks Hot bliggity blog!
That little 7 day computer break was not as successful as I thought it would be. More on that later. Maybe. But suffice it to say I have decided that the computer is too ingrained into my life to quit cold turkey. Not even sure that would be good. But taking a break was good. I know I am on here too much at times.
A few random thoughts for this Wednesday.
Vacations are not only fun, but necessary. My family needs one. Bad!!!! Just need to figure out when, where and how.
Garage sales are hard work. Really hard work. But like vacations they are necessary to my sanity and well being. I have not had one in years and boy, does it show! I am overwhelmed with all we need to get rid of. Truly it is staggering. I have sold over $150 worth of just stuff on Craigslist this week pre-garage sale. It feels so good just to have that little bit of stuff gone. I have decided that I need to make myself have a garage sale every year to get rid of stuff. Every year.
Sleep. Can't live without it, but can't get all I need to do this week done if I get much of it. I really need a break from the mile long to-do lists! But such is life. Better than being bored. WHICH is now my least favorite word! Too bad my kids seem to love it so much. We need a better chore system around here!
VBS is also hard work. have you hugged a VBS volunteer lately?
Home Improvement. WOW. What a racket! We are in the thick of it trying to get our house "market ready." So much time and money goes into these houses we occupy. As a student of history, civilizations & cultures, I was taught to really learn about a people look to their architecture. Not just the great buildings either. Look at the every day dwellings of the common man. The details in those spaces will tell you so much about a people,what their society held precious, what they aspired to, and what they loved. So what do our homes say about our culture? HHHMMMM? Thoughts to ponder.
Lastly, is there anything in the world as refreshing as a cool swimming pool on a hot Texas summer day? I don't think so!
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
It is with great fear and trembling that I write this. My kids have challenged me to turn the computer off for one week. Yes, 7 days. No e-mail, on-line bill paying, on-line shopping, Craigslist, Facebook, or Bejeweled blitz. And no blogging. Not just internet...no computer. No typing. Nothing. Nada. YIKES!
It's not that I am letting my kids boss me around. It's something I have been thinking about quite a bit lately. And I can do this. Right?
I actually look forward to everything I will get done when I'm not here reading and clicking away. But I have become so dependent on this thing that I'm wondering how long the desire to do this will last. I'm gonna have to use the phonebook if I need a number. I am quickly printing my I-cal calendar so I will not forget everything.
Fear and trembling.
Just wait until I think up a challenge for them! :)
Well, here it goes.
Monday, June 08, 2009
If you have the sound on and if you are reading this today, you are hearing one of my all time favorite songs! As much as I DO NOT like the Dixie Chicks politics, I LOVE THIS VERSION!!!
I have loved this song since I sang it in my 5th grade music program at Travis Elementary Thanks Mrs Bates! The Carpenters have a great version of this song as did The Tone Rangers in the movie The Break-up. (To bad that scene didn't actually make the movie.) Kermit the frog of course was in the top 40 for many weeks in 1979 with his version. :) I bet I listened to The Muppet Movie 8-track a million times when I was Kolby's age. But this is my favorite version, probably because the Dixie Chicks make me sound better as I sing at the top of my lungs! (My kids just shake their heads and pray no friends stop by when I'm in SING mode. Wonder why? )
I have been cleaning out a lot and I have noticed I clean faster and better if I have music going. This playlist has been blaring for days. And I love every song. Some remind me of people, events, or books.... Anyway, I hope you don't mind me sharing my weird wide range of favorite songs with you on this blog. Feel free to join in... oh I'm about the belt out the chorus.....
Have you been half asleep and have you heard voices?
I've heard them calling my name
Is this the sweet sound that calls
The young sailors
The Voice might be one and the same
I've heard it too many times to ignore it
It's something that I'm supposed to be
Someday we'll find it
The Rainbow Connection
The lovers, the dreamers and me!!!
Love that song! Hope you have wonderful rainbow filled day!
Wednesday, June 03, 2009
I lost my camera and could not take my traditional teacher pictures this morning. But I found it and took after school pictures. All three of my kids seemed to have grown so much this year! But especially KOLBY!
Our girl is getting so tall! Love these days and these pictures but they are pulling a bit at my Mommy heart.
In other news, we have had a really crazy week. The end of school is always nuts but then my Dad fell and had a terrible time until he was able to have surgery this morning. The surgery went well but he is off his feet for at least another 3 months. Considering he is just now starting to get around after his fall last October... Well this is not good news! But he is receiving excellent care now and we are happy for that! More later.