Friday, April 27, 2012


Need stuff?
If you're in the Greenville, SC area tomorrow (Saturday, April 28) from 8am-1pm, I know where you have to go! First Baptist Church is having a huge yard sale, with all proceeds going to youth missions. So all of these old couches and Christmas ornaments and Tupperware will be changed into building supplies for our youth mission trip. Very cool.

My daughter and I have done our part already, shopping for her grad school apartment.  What did we snag? A comfy chair, a desk chair, a dresser (really it's a desk but Youth Minister Frank is such a good salesperson he convinced us to use it as a dresser-beware of him :) and tons of stuff for her kitchen. So yey. We have new stuff and contributed to a mission trip all in one shopping spree.

It amazes me that we do this every year, yet our church donations always manage to fill up the gym. It reminds me of what a missionary in an impoverished, far away country recently wrote to one of my friends: something to the effect of "we pray for you all too, because we know how hard it is to be close to God when you have so much stuff in your way."

Wow. Maybe I'll do a better job cleaning out and donating next time around.

Love and peace to you!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

One of the reasons I LOVE my job...

One of the reasons I LOVE my job is that I get to see artwork like this every single week.
Sometimes it just blows me away.

We're so lucky to hear the voices and see the thinking of children.

I think I want to be a child when I grow up.

Love and peace to you!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

I'm back and I've missed you!

Hey there, stranger!
It's been so long that you probably don't even know me anymore. I feel like I should offer you something for being so nice to stop by. How about some brownies and sweet tea in a classy plastic Doctor Pepper glass? There's no ice in there but I got it right out of the fridge so it's still nice and cold. Don't mind the bird there sitting on some dead-ish moss. I just like him there no matter what anybody says.

See the birthday napkin? We celebrated my Sweetie's 50th birthday yesterday (I know! I can't believe it either!) but since you're here, we can pretend it's your birthday. I was going to serve you some of the left over banana pudding and even put a candle in it, but I'm afraid you just can't make banana pudding look appetizing on film so we'll stay with the brownies. If you come over in real life I will give you two big dollops and more to take home because I've got way too much in my fridge and only three of us here to eat it.

So I hope you'll tell me how you're doing and what you've been up to lately!
I've missed my blogging friends and blogging too. Life got uncomfortably crazy and I got bloated and grouchy so I took a break for more than a year, and now I'm glad to start back again, blogging on faith and family and the wonders/curiosities/weirdness of life. I'm not sure how often I'll post. When I started the blog (back in 2008!) I posted every day and I loved it. And then I switched to three times a week and that was fun. But now I'm feeling so at ease with life and its nuttiness that I'll just say I'll post when I feel like it. How about that?! :) I hope you'll come by when you feel like it too. 

So when you last left me back in February of 2011 (or I guess I left you--sorry!) I was making stew and writing for Reflections. So shall I catch you up a little on what's happened between then and now?
I'll make it quick. Sort of.
First I got a job working with these fine teenager people.
That's the youth group at my church. They needed someone to help part time, and they're a lot of fun.The job involved a sweaty hot mission trip, a sweaty hot youth camp, and a sweaty hot retreat, but I can still truthfully say that I really enjoyed it! (Just not the sweating part.) The kids made me feel good about the future and humanity and let me keep tabs on my youngest as well, so what more do you want?

Meanwhile, my middle baby was getting ready to graduate from high school.
I will always think of him like this.
No one ever told me that when your middle child (who was your baby for many years, during a time when you had exceptionally big hair and no thought of a third child) gets ready to graduate, you do crazy things like deciding to put down engineered hardwood in the sun room before all the family comes for graduation.
What poor posture. Don't look. Instead, focus on Tanner. What a lazy bones. He wasn't any help at all with the vacuum.

Sometimes I worked to the tune of tuba music.
Oh, and Ben finally decided what school to go to. It's in Durham, North Carolina and it rhymes with Puke.
Sorry, but I'm an NCSU fan at heart, and anyway, it's hard to cheer for the Devil.  But I'm really happy for him and I will still love him just as much as long as he doesn't become obnoxious. :) He's promised me he won't and he hasn't so far.

So graduation came and went and we all survived.                              Then in June (on Flag Day, as usual!) I celebrated my 25th wedding anniversary with this lovely man. Do not fear, he has shaved since the photo was taken.
And in July, guess what movie the whole family went to see?
And yes, we took the broom.

You still there? 
It will be over soon.

Then, on the very hottest record breaking day of the year, we granted my mother's birthday wish (for which she had pined and hinted way too many years) and had a professional photo shoot of our whole family. It was 99 sweltering degrees, but Ashley Stephenson at Story Photographers actually made it fun! (And no one had expected that! At least I hadn't!) And Mom brought Popsicles so that helped.

Okay, speeding things along here...

School started again. Sarah went off for her senior year, Ben started his freshman year, Sam started 7th grade at a new school, and a couple months later, I got my dream job! Really!

As Minister to Children at my church, I get to do all the things I love the most.  I work with children ages 1st through 5th grade, directing their Sunday school experience and working with a faculty of awesome teachers. I get to write a lot--new Godly Play lessons for them to enjoy, a Godly Play blog The Wonder Circle for their teachers, and a weekly newsletter for families. I work with the Children's Committee to plan monthly fun activities for the kids, and I do whatever it takes to support their families and the church in building their faith. This summer I'll co-direct 2 sessions of Children's Mission Week, take a group to Camp Prism for 4 days, and lead Excellent Adventure, a VBS experience for elementary kids. I couldn't be happier and I never ever want to leave. No matter what.
Really. Don't fight me for my job. I might have to smite you.

I could go on and on about my job (and I will I'm sure) but what else happened while you were away?
My sweet Sarah got accepted into an Occupational Therapy program for grad school and got in some early practice on her grandma when my mom had her hip replaced over the winter.

Christmas came and my Sam got a prank kit.
How that boy loves to freak people out.

Ben started racing with the cycling team at school. He loves it, and only has flown over the handlebars once or twice. (Yey for helmets.)
Then yesterday, my honey turned 50 and we had a party. Oh yeah, I told you about that. It reminded me how much I love having a house full of people, as long as Tanner the Slobber Dog is at the Doggy Motel where he can't eat off your plate and sneak a lick of your hands whenever you aren't expecting it. Maybe that's part of what I miss about blogging--having a house full of people ready to chat whenever they have a moment. And getting to stop by your place too. No trips to the kennel or cleaning and cooking required.

Won't you say hi and tell me what's new in your life?
Much love,