Monday, April 30, 2012

Beach Weekend

Randy and I got to spend the weekend in Wilmington.

Randy was in class the whole time:
Friday 7-10
Saturday 8-5
Sunday 8-12:30

I on the other hand was FREE!
The kids spent the weekend at the lake with Randy's parents!
THANK YOU GRAMMY AND PEPAW.....They had soooo much fun!
So did I!!!!

The City of Durham was paying for his class, his room, his mileage, a per diam for it was a VERY inexpensive weekend!
Thank you City of Durham!
He did work all weekend....but I  sure did not!

Randy and I both got our undergraduates degree at UNCW.
We hadn't been to Wilmington in years though.....and boy oh boy has it changed.
So after having dinner with Randy, and another guy he works with that was also here for training, they headed off to class and I headed out on the town.
First I explored the campus!

It has grown so much!

That's my old dorm!

Randy and I got married my senior year at UNCW and he worked as a Manger Trainee at 84 Lumber and I worked as a Nanny for a surgeon and his wife.  They had 2 little girls.  His name was Dr. Payne!

This was their house.  It was huge and in a very exclusive neighborhood.  They were in the process of remodeling the inside so they rented a house on the beach while I was the Nanny so I split my time between the two houses.  I couldn't find the beach house.
So many memories!

Then I headed to the mall.
I bought a new bathing suit.  That was so depressing that I had to buy a new purse and get a pedicure to make myself feel better :)

I stayed until the mall closed and headed back to the hotel.
I am an to say I enjoyed my alone time may be a gross understatement!

Saturday I slept in...and messed around on the computer....and took my time getting ready.
Then I headed out with hopes of going to the beach but it was really overcast.
So I went to Khols!
I got a few things for Sophie's upcoming birthday and I got a watch.  Mine has been broken forever!
It's nice to know the time again!
Then I drove around town some more.

This is me and Randy's first house!
It used to be yellow.
Good Times!

I finally headed out to the beach around 11:00

I spent the next few hours....thinking....and.....reading.

It was wonderful.

It started out overcast....but it was bright and clear after a while.
I ended up a bit crispy!
It was so nice and relaxing though.

I had lunch at our favorite hangout..The Causeway Cafe

Then I went back to the hotel.  Read some more.  Messed on the computer.  Got cleaned up.

When Randy got done with class we drove down to the river.
Walked along the river and through a few shops at the Cotton Exchange.
Drove all over town.
Finally found an off the beating path non-chain restaurant.
Halogen's Public House
It was so good!
Kind of a Bennett Point Grill feel to it.  Little hole in the wall neighborhood restaurant.  Good.
We talked and talked and talked and talked.
It was nice to have entire, deep conversations without interruptions.

Then we had to hit Krispy Kreme the HOT sign was on and Randy wanted to get a hat.

Sunday....Randy was back to class and I just packed up.  Took my time getting ready.  Had a nice quiet time.  Messed around on the computer.  Read....checked out and went to pick him up from his class.

We headed back to Durham.  We stopped for Lunch with his work buddy at Smithfield's.
It was fun meeting and spending time with one of the people Randy works with.  I enjoyed getting to know him.

We got home earlier then we had planned so Randy cut the grass and I went to the grocery store.
Bob and Ruth brought the kids home around 7:00 and we got to hear all about their fun weekend.

I had such a good weekend!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

It's Only Been a Week???

I am honestly amazed at all the living that can take place in a week.
It was just last Friday that Randy and Sophie were at the church lock-in...
And Andrew was hanging out with his buddy and going to several birthdays....
And the Littles and I were exploring the woods

What an adventure!

Taking Risks.....

Having Fun.....

Riding Bikes.....



Finding Treasures!

Having Fun!

After the big adventure....we had baths and trimmed our nails...

Love my crazy girl!

Then we capped off the night with a round of Candy Land!

Good Times!

The rest of the week was filled with School and Lincoln and Stella and Errands and Dance and Guitar and Church and Stomach Bugs and Cooking and Laundry and Cleaning....and LOTS of TV.  I was in a funk....and the kids had tummy aches and we did what had to be done and I let them watch too much TV!

Then at last FRIDAY....

We dropped Mindy off at Mrs. Susan's to have her PUPPIES!

We packed our stuff!
Tried to contain our joy.....

Sent the kids off to the lake with Grammy and Pepaw

Everyone was all smiles!

Can't wait to hear all about their weekend!
I know I had a great one.
Gearing up for Monday!

Thursday, April 26, 2012


The Lord is working overtime on me these days!  I had been really down the last week or so and a bit disillusioned with what I had deemed as a closed mindedness among many of my brothers and sisters in Christ.  I was truly hurt and very sad.  It's been the type of cloud that consumes.  I mean school wasn't getting finished.  I was disorganized.  I wasn't keeping up with my household tasks.  I was ignoring my children because I've been consumed with this hurt.  Several things have happened though:

  The Lord keeps reminding me of the unit Randy taught on forgiveness.  I am called to forgive. matter what.  How precious is Jesus?  That he would allow me to go through this wonderful study in Sunday School with my husband BEFORE I needed it.  Now I get to put into practice what I learned!  I am not saying people have meant to hurt me.  I am not saying people have intended me harm.  I am not saying people have sinned against me.  I was hurt and I have needed to forgive.....not because of others actions but because of my interpretation of those actions if that makes sense.....ANYWAY on to the main point:

Even more then that though.....I've had an epiphany.....I know it is the Lord's work in me....because this is so not me and my flesh....

I have been praying for MONTHS about my role in the universal church.  I honestly have been a bit (okay REALLY) disillusioned by so many Christians sitting and getting and not caring. I have been praying that the church would COME ALIVE (myself definitely included).  I have been TOTALLY frustrated.  I hope this isn't too's just honestly what I have been frustrated with.  So now this whole big amendment thing comes up and boy oh boy are the passions is easy to get sucked in!

Revelation 3:15-16
"I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot.  I wish you were either one or the other!  So, because you are lukewarm-neither hot nor cold-I am about to spit you out of my mouth."
This scripture is always a bit scary to me.  But guys guess what?  It is gettin HOT in here and I like it! 
We are talking about REAL stuff....and sometimes that gets messy....but I would so prefer messy and real to pretty and fake!

But guess what I realized today......our church has a PULSE!  People CARE!  A LOT!!! THANK YOU JESUS!  THERE IS HOPE! Do we agree......not on everything! However, we do agree on the authority of God's Word.  We do agree on God's definition of marriage.  We do agree that we are called to love God and others.  We do agree that we should lavish people with God's grace.  We do agree that we are called to love sinners.  We do agree that Christ died for all.  We do agree on so much.

We are talking to each other.  We are wrestling together with hard issues.  How Satan would LOVE to use this to draw lines of division.  I think God could use this for such good.  Yes our church has been in the wringer these last months.  We are at a crucial time in our church I believe.  We are at a crossroads.  We can be destroyed OR we can glorify God.  WE DO NOT HAVE TO AGREE POLITICALLY.....yet we can love each other....How healthy is that?  We can passionately disagree.  We can passionately debate.  We can passionately wrestle these issues AND we can passionately LOVE each other in spite of it all.  We can talk about this stuff.  We can disagree totally and we can still really love each other!  Now that my friends is a testimony!

The TRUTH is absolute.  It will not change.  On that there is NO DISAGREEMENT.  How we as individuals are used to live this out will look different.  We are different.  God has different plans and different jobs and different missions for each of us to fulfill.  YET we are ONE Body.  Our body has many parts....many functions....many differences.....BUT we have one head...JESUS CHRIST and his HOLY, GOOD, PERFECT WORD!

"If you love those who love you, what reward will you get?  Are not even the tax collectors doing that?  And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others?  Do not even pagans do that?" 
Matthew 5:46

We are Christians.  We are brothers and sisters in Christ.  The world is watching us.  We do not agree on this issue politically.  However we can love each other anyway.

AND I'm so happy that people care enough to get a bit uppity.  I'm glad we have passion.  I'm glad we are thinking!  I'm glad because I'm infused with hope.  Maybe....just maybe.......WE (myself definitely included) will COME ALIVE!

Love, Love, Love you all!
Thank you Jesus for your WORD and your TRUTH and your FAITHFULNESS and your REDEMPTION!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Keeping A Rein

Oh my word......being a grown up is hard! The older I get and the more I walk with the Lord the less I know!  I have been wrestling......with difficult issues lately. changing issues.  Issues that are not political in nature.  I actually am not trying to be a political advocate in any way, shape, or form.  I'm just trying to live out my faith in all areas of my life.  My faith matters to me a politics and yours matter to me very little-that is between you and the do not need my help!  I'm dealing with issues that ask questions like......

1.  How do I reconcile the Lord's perfect, unchanging, inspired, law with his radical, unfathomable, life wrecking, grace?  He came to fulfill the law not to change it.  He also ate with sinners.....he KNEW PEOPLE and did not cast stones.........PRAISE JESUS!  Yes he instructs us to go and sin no more.....but that came AFTER the relationship.....not before.  He washed the feet of his betrayer. He touched the leper.  He redeemed broken lives.  PRAISE HIM!

2.  Does God call me to stand as a light for his principles (YES) or does he call me to get into the messy details of a sinful world and rub skin with the lost and offer love rather then judgement? (YES)  He is love and HE is also a righteous holy Judge.  What is my job?  How do I fit in his plan?  How do I live both with my feet on the hard clay of this world?

3.  Why be radical?  I am a 36 year old, Bible thumpin', mom to 5, daycare provider to 2, educator of 5, wife to 1, maid (although I can't recommend my cleaning services-they are VERY lax), cook, chauffeur, daughter, sister, aunt, friend, blogger, picture taking, memory making, disciple.  I'm flat worn out!  What is the point of caring?  Why do I even think about the universal church?  I don't think normal people do that.  Why don't I think more about cute shoes or clothes or hairstyles.  Why don't I care about normal girl stuff.  Why can't I just be a normal girl?  I don't have time for this!  What on earth does the Lord want from me?  Why do I have to be burdened with details like reaching the lost?  Caring for the poor?  Why does it matter to me if the church is focused on missions and orphans and grace?  Why does it matter to me more what the lost think of the church then what the insiders think of me?  It takes too much time to care.  It takes too much work.  Can't I just go along to get along?  Why can't I just shut up and nod.

4.  Lord....what do you want?  Where do you want me?  How come this world is becoming so dag gum uncomfortable?  How come church is becoming uncomfortable?  What is church?  Is our church who you want her to be?  What is my role in that?  Can I be an agent of change?  Am I a stumbling block? 

5.  What is a surrendered life?  It's scary to surrender.  What if his plans don't match mine?  What if it doesn't pan out?  What if we get all backfires? 

So I'm dealing with this mess.....and the Lord gives me James.....
verses like:
James 1:26-27
"If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.  Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."
James 1:25
"But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom and continues to do this not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it-he will be blessed in what he does.
James 2:15-17
"Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food.  ff one of you says to him. "Go, I wish you well: keep warm and well fed, but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?  In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead."
James 3:17
"But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure: then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere."
James 4:11-12
" Brothers, do not slander one another.  Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it.  When you judge the law, you are not keeping it but sitting in judgement on it.  There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy.  But you-who are you to judge your neighbor?
James 5:7-9
"Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord's coming.  See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains.  You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord's coming is near.  Don't grumble against each other, brothers or you will be judged.  The Judge is standing at the door!
James 5:16-18
"Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.  The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.  Elijah was a man just like us.  He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years.  Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced crops."
James 5:19-20
"My brothers if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death, and cover over a multitude of sins."

Oh James.  The Jew.  The lover of the law.  The brother of Jesus.  The show me your faith.  The rein your tongue.....I think that may include pen in my case :) . are indeed wrecking my life.  Life was simple.  Life was good.  Life was daily.....and now.....I have to put skin on what I believe.  Why does this Gentile girl keep getting mixed up with Jews who mess with my head, my heart, my life?  UGH!

Oh Lord help me!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Summer Camp!

I am very excited to announce my Summer Camps!

I will be hosting camps Monday-Thursday for kids ages 4-9

The full day Monday-Thursday 7:30-5:30 is $125 per week
The half day Monday-Thursday 9:00-1:00 is $70 per week
The two full days 7:30-5:30 is $70 per week

Each week will have a different theme:

Week 1
June 4-June 7
Pool Party!

Week 2
June 11-July 14


Week 3
June 25-June 28

Week 4
July 2-July 5
Red, White, and Blue


Week 5
July 16-July 19
This week is full!

Week 6
July 23-July 26

Week 7
July 30-August 2

Week 8
August 6-August 9
Fairy Tales!

Week 9
August 13-August 16
Under the Sea!
One spot left!

Week 10
August 20-August 23
Out of This World!
One spot left!

Daily Camp Schedule
7:30-8:00   Breakfast
8:00-9:00  Themed Inside Play
9:00-9:30 Themed Morning Snack
9:30-10:00 Themed Craft
10:00-11:00  Outside Themed Fun!
11:00-11:30        Free Outside Play
11:30-12:00 Story time/Themed Game
12:00-12:30        LUNCH
12:30-1:00 Special Theme Activity
1:00-3:00 Quiet Time/Movie for Camp Kids
3:00-3:30 Snack
3:30-4:30   Water Time
4:30-5:00 Circle
5:00-5:30 Inside Free Play/Pack up

Please let me know if you would like more information!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Another Week!

Meet sweet Stella!

Stella is my sweet cousin!
She looks JUST like Amy to me!
Soooooo pretty!


She has been coming for half days this week on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday!
So good!
She comes from 8-12
She eats, snuggles, and naps.....and goes home.
Such a sweet little dose of sugar!

She loves to listen to Lydia read!

It is nice having a little baby to snuggle!

Lots of people to play with!

But boy oh the days go FAST!  We start promptly at 7:30....and it takes every minute of the day to get school done!
However I do count moments like this as PE, Playtime, and Cleanup....

The kids are dancing and jumping around.....which equals exercise!
Sweet having a good ole time.....which equals playtime!
Mindy is eating all the crumbs from under my couch cushions....which counts as cleaning!

I say multi-tasking ROCKS!
So does my job!
Look at the view of my world....

wouldn't trade it!

While I keep busy at home....I feel good knowing that these two fine men are keeping the City of Durham humming!

Seriously though....Randy loves his job!
He loves working for Rick!
They are a lot more then just their Sunday attire!

This weekend we had a quick trip with my parents and sister and brother and sister in law and their Sophie's friend Hannah to Pullen Park!

My parents treated all the kids to a ride on the carousel


They also treated the whole crew to a train ride!

LOVE Gray's smile!

I left the park with some VERY tired, hot, and thirsty children....
So we stopped at the closest gas station and got slushies!

We have also spent our fair share of time at the doctors offices this week:


and Follow up appointments at the Dermatologist.....and Nose doctor.....Whew!

Highlight of Jack's week.....
When we were headed home from one of our appointments we passed by a golf course near our neighborhood....and the sprinkler was on....he said PLEASE let us run through it....PLEASE!

I almost said no.....I'm glad I didn't....

They LOVED it!

And all this activity....and fun....and peoples....equals LOTS OF MESS!

Now...don't ask why the milk is in the sink....because I don't know????
This is just how I found it!

Things are hopping around here!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Late Easter Post

We had a good Easter.

We gave the kids their Easter Baskets on Saturday.

They were all smiles!

After church on Sunday we went to Mama's
We tried to get a picture with all the cousins....

It proved to be more difficult then we expected!
Everything was beautiful!

Sophie had fun playing in Nanny's high heels!

Aunt Stacy had hid eggs for all the kids to have an Easter egg hunt

They had a great time.

The weather was beautiful!

I wish we could have stayed longer.
However we are blessed with ALL our families living here and we really do LOVE that but it does make for busy holidays!

So we jetted out of Mama's and headed to the lake to have Easter with Randy's family.
I don't have any pictures though.....I left my camera :(
HOWEVER we did have a great time.
The kids played on the camp playground.
We went on a sunset boat ride on Randy's parents new boat.
All the grandkids got to take a turn driving.
We had a great dinner at a really neat restaurant on the lake.
We headed back and the kids had a campfire.
The grandkids spent the night with Grammy and Pepaw.
(all except Andrew- he had to come home with us for an early morning followup from his surgery)
The kids had a GREAT time and came home dirty and exhausted!
Looking forward to more good times at the lake this summer.

Friday, April 13, 2012

We're Expecting!

We Are Expecting.....


Sorry-I just couldn't resist :)

Today has been a BIG day for BABIES at RBC!  Baby Bennett, Baby Jake and Ella, and looks like Baby Reese will make her appearance later today too.......
Brooke and Kevin, Jenny and Mike, and Kelly and Brad!

So no I will never be making that wonderful announcement again....but our sweet dog Mindy is indeed expecting!

She is due at the end of the month and if you are interested in one of her puppies you can contact Susan at Golden Creek Kennels

Don't know if there are any reservations available but all Susan's dogs are precious!

My kids are BEGGING for me to let them keep one.....
The Answer:
NO!  Absolutely No WAY!
My House is CROWDED!  Wouldn't trade Mindy for anything.....but no more puppies for me!
Happy Weekend!