"I've found that when life's brush obscures my view with gloomy strokes that seem to mar the scene, God's hand appears and gives to sunless hue and dreary skies a more majestic sheen." Gustafson

28 March 2007

Oh Happy Day!

Today has been an INCREDIBLE day celebrating BEB's life! Her day was filled with surprises, lots of love and time with family & friends. She opened every present with excitement and said Thank You this morning when we told her we decorated the house just for her! CNB and I bought her her first pair of HOT PINK Chuck Taylors! They ROCK - problem is, she won't put them on! Maybe with time, she'll warm up to the idea of them. We're hopeful!

At the end of this long, joy-filled day, we are in awe of our little girl and praising God for choosing us to be her Mommy & Daddy. She brightens our lives each and everyday!

24 March 2007

Sunset over Franklin

Early evenings are my favorite - especially in beautiful Franklin. Where the sky's shades are blended together over the rolling hills. The sun barely peaking over the trees as it sets. This was the view that captured us as we drove into downtown this evening. We love strolling the sidewalks, BEB looking in the store windows - especially at the toys in the vintage Toy store windows, and ending at Starbucks to get 'Daddy's favorite coffee' as BEB proclaimed tonight. Some of our best moments as a family are spent enjoying each other's company walking up and down Main St.

BEB drew a bit of a crowd tonight as she stopped in the middle of the sidewalk in front of Ben & Jerry's (YUM!) to do a little jig. She was enthralled by a man strumming songs on his acoustic guitar. Her little foot started tapping and at one point she did a crazy, spastic dance and that was that! She was ready to keep pushing her stroller - not much into sitting in it tonight. It was a delightful evening!

A Friend of Al's...

My boss, Al shared this prayer need for a friend and his parents.

Eric Volz, the 27 year old son of Al's friends, was falsely accused and convicted of murder in Nicaragua. He’s currently in prison for 30 years for a crime he didn’t commit.

Here’s the link to a brief film on YouTube. Check it out and pass it on so that others can join in: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YChhOHrFA4

Thank you for your prayer support for Eric and his family.

22 March 2007

Happy Burfffff-dayyy

In less than a week, BEB will officially be 2 years old! How can this be? I mean just yesterday we were literally celebrating her birth in March 2005.

Now we have this autonomous little lady who, of course, wants to do everything on her own, sings 'Happy Burffff-dayyy' to herself and knows she'll be turning 2! The once boobie-feeding chair that's a permanent fixture in our living room, has now become BEB's chair - the place where she loves to sit and look through all of Mommy & Daddy's photo albums. The chair arms which were once covered in boobie juice, now shows evidence of goldfish crumbs and toddler slobber!

Her days are spent with MiMi & Papa (I'm so thankful she has such a special relationship with her MiMi & Papa at such an early age. It's a JOY to see them together!) - cooking in her play kitchen, cleaning the floors with Mommy's Swiffer or her toy vacuum, going on wagon rides, riding her tricycle, reading in Papa or MiMi's lap, eating lots of snacks (we're pretty confident she's going to turn into one!), running around in circles with her arms out making airplane noises, chasing Scout around the house or walking him on his leash from room to room, playing in the ball court, playing on the swings & slide, and coloring. She loves going to her Mother's Morning Out class twice a week. Weekly she gets to play with her best guy buddy, C-man and usually gets to go to the Library on Tuesdays where she learns new songs and gets to play on the computer. Her favorite outings are going to the mall to look at the animals in the Pet store, play in the kids area or dance in Abercrombie! She starts groovin' when she hears the thumpin' music.

She's faithful about praying for her family every night and has to include all her friends at 'school'. Daddy's usually the first person she asks to pray for. They have such a special bond - it's incredible to see them together. CNB loves her so well and is good about setting healthy boundaries with her.

As of late, she's taken to my boss, Al aka "Owl" who has nicknamed her "Birdie", Dr. Davis - her pediatrician and sweet Cotton - our elderly neighbor. She's in love with Dr. Davis and chatters about him all the time. I made MiMi dig a brochure out of the trash the other day just so we could have his picture mounted on our fridge. She proudly points and says Dr. Davis when she sees his pic. I think she'd go see him everyday if we'd let her!

God has blessed us with a loving little girl who has so much compassion for others. We are so honored to be her parents!

Our sweet Cotton

Sweet Mr. Campbell aka "Cotton". When you meet this precious 90-something year old man, he claims that people started calling him Cotton because of his bright white hair but now, he snickers - his hair's just dingy! On any given day, you'll see him walking the neighborhood pushing his blue walker. He gets around just fine - when he has trash to take to the dumpster, no problem - he just piles it up on a large plastic canvas and drags it to the dump. He gives BEB rides on his "stroller" as she calls it and has even been seen pulling 2 kids in a wagon - one hand on his walker, one hand pulling the red Radio Flyer.

Today, we spent time with him on his patio as he was tilling the soil in his overgrown garden. Getting it ready for this year's tomato plants. He adores BEB and loves to hear her say his name. I told him that BEB woke up this morning, looked out her window at the back of his house and said, "I love Cotton!"

Thank you God for our sweet Cotton.

19 March 2007

Sharing my heart

A few seasons back, about 3 years ago, God stirred in my heart and prompted me to start writing one evening while CNB was on the road touring. The poems below came out of a time of allowing God to overflow from my heart onto paper. I share these as an expression of who I truly am. A child of God on this journey of life wanting to please Him, desiring to be the women He created me to be and longing to seek Him first.

Judge Not

I am first to bang the gavel,
And point the finger.

Concerned and worried too much
about them and not enough about me.

Over and over, God reminds
me He is the ultimate judge.

Yet I find myself constantly
focused on others instead of BEB.

Lord, turn my eyes inward
to see all the wrong in me
before throwing the first stone.

For who am I?
Take my pride and stomp it out cold.
Humble me so I only see self
and no one else.

Face to the Ground

On my knees, I ask You to speak.
I want to see the world
through Your eyes today.
For I am too weak.
I look out and feast on Your beauty.
You nourish me with Your
Word all day long.
Moment by moment I
seek Your face.

How precious was that time
that now lives in the past.
Why is that so?
I long for the day to come again.
To devour Your words
and live out Your truth.
You spoke, I listened
all with my face to the ground.

What do You see?

When You see my heart Lord,
do You see a reflection or do You see me?
Is it fully compliant or completely defiant?
At rest or seeking success?
Giving or living to impress?
Attentive to Your voice or making a choice?
Open to good or wanting to be understood?
Quiet and still or looking for thrills?
I can tell as I write, these are all in sight.
For You are the God of Grace, only asking
that I always seek Your face.
When I bring my confession,
that's when You see Your reflection.

All I Can Be

Lord, help me see my sin,
all that lies within...
I'm all off beat
trying so hard to compete.
Why do I fail
when perfect love prevails?
It's so easy to compare,
when life seems unfair.
Quench my desire, God
refine me in the fire.
May I love You more,
You have so much in store.
I give it all to you,
what more can I do?
Take my heart,
strip it apart.
Let me see
all I can be.

17 March 2007

I want it!

So - I'm way behind filling BEB's baby book with pictures but I've been pretty good about writing down all of her new developments each month. Thanks to MiMi & PaPa for keeping good reports on her each day - new words, learning & playtime activities, new interests....
This morning I purposed to get up-to-date and wrote down all of the new things in her world since January. Boy, God sure is teaching me a lot about my own selfishness through this sweet little girl. Her new phrases are "I did it", "it's mine", "I want it", "I need it", "NO", "I like it" and so many more "I" exclamations! The majority of my time is spent thinking about what I need, what I want, what I like, what I did and NOT about others. I can't seem to get past God's word in Psalm 23 "I shall not be in want." I get stuck there everytime and have to ask for God's strength in the moments of my life when I want so much more - more for my marriage, more for my family, more for my life.

16 March 2007

Nowhere Music

An ordinary February day...

The quietness of the house,
the beating rain on the window,
the clap of thunder rolling in the Heavens,
the sound of water from the shower washing away hints of yesterday,
the chirping bird outside my window,
the rustle of the family dog quietly nestled in his bed,
the flash of light from a far off lightning bolt,
the rumble of the fridge,
the creaks and groans of the wood floors settling,
cars in the distance,
my alarm clock beeping...

These are the noises I hear this morning -
the symphony that greets me this new morn.

Soon a toddler's cry will be heard,
the hustle and bustle of another day,
but for now,
I am content in this moment.

The moment of nowhere that will never be again.

I finally did it!

With no help from my computer-guru-husband, CNB - I FINALLY set-up my very own blog page! I've been wanting a place where I can capture my thoughts, connect with friends and share photos. MySpace seems like the logical thing to do these days but it has no lure on me. So, today is the day that I stopped dragging my feet and made the plunge to become a blogger!