"Your greatest contribution to the Kingdom of God may not be something you do, but someone you raise." ~Andy Stanley

November 30, 2014

The best day

Our family had a wonderful Thanksgiving!
 It was truly 'more than we asked or hoped for.'
Hubby, who is recovering from chemo and radiation treatments, felt the best he had yet!
He was up and interacting with everyone all day! He was able to eat at the table with us for the first time in maybe 2 months! And this sweet man, who couldn't talk a couple of weeks ago, gave a lovely speech and reminded us of the history of Thanksgiving and prayed over our meal.

I heard him say on the phone that he was going to have to be like Rudolph this year because he wasn't going to be able to 'join in any reindeer games.' LOL
(we play games on Thanksgiving and Christmas and we call them the reindeer games)
BUT, that did not turn out to be the case! He actually felt well enough to sit outside and be the reindeer games scorekeeper, which made it all so much more fun! He was bobbing his head along to OneRepublic songs and taking pictures of me whenever it was my turn to shoot in archery. LOL
And THEN, he couldn't stand it any longer, and he grabbed the bow and took a shot! I couldn't believe he had the strength to pull back but he did and he hit the target!

Joy and I got our Katniss on ; )
and hit the bulls-eye twice! Her shot was skill and mine was pure luck!
Zac took over the turkey carving job for Dad and did a great job. He and Tiffany had Thanksgiving at our house and then at hers. (and that sweet girl did all the dishes! Oh my goodness!)
 We also had a sweet college-student friend of ours over. And another dear young man had to cancel due to lack of transportation, but we found out that he had someone nearby to celebrate with. Hubby's absolute favorite thing is to open up our hone to people who don't have a place to go.

So, there was food and games and then there was music!!! Hubby wanted the musicians present to play and sing Preacher by OneRepublic. So, they did! Because they are all talented like that.
Zac played his box drum, Andrew played guitar, and our friend sang. And boy, can she sing! Nathan, who spent his Thanksgiving in Sacramento with his two uncles, aunt and cousins, enjoyed the performance with us via FaceTime. Our singer looks like she's texting but she was reading the lyrics as she sang. LOL


 It was pretty much THE perfect day!


November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

And let the cooking begin! : )

"Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good,
His love endures forever." 
~Psalm 118:1

Happy Thanksgiving, Friends. Hope your day is filled love, fun and food!


November 26, 2014

Wednesdays in the Word

"The Lord has His way in the whirlwind and in the storm.
And the clouds are the dust of His feet. (I love that!) 

The mountains quake before Him, 
The hills melt, 
And the earth heaves at His presence...

 The Lord is good. 
A stronghold in the day of trouble,
And He knows those who trust in Him."
(from Nahum 1)

 Happy Wednesday!

November 25, 2014

All the happenings

This enormous box came in the mail from sweet family members, full of yummy items to help tempt my Hubby's appetite to come back. So thoughtful!

Andrew's best friend flew in from CA for the annual youth retreat that weekend. They were beyond excited for all the fun to come: powerful worship services, small groups, hotel room antics and a trip to Islands of Adventure!

For her birthday, Joy had her hair done by Zac's girlfriend, Tiffany. She wanted it to be red and I wasn't sure I would like it red, but it is so very cute on her.

Friday night, the kids left for the retreat and I declared Saturday to be Jammie Day. I've never stayed in my jammies ALL day unless I as sick before. It was like my own little staycation! I took care of hubby, watched movies and read a book.  It was a fun day off.

Sunday, Hubby wanted to try leaving the house and going to church but it proved to be too soon. Bless his heart, so I went by myself. The kids came back that night, blessed and exhausted.

 Monday, the boys saw Interstellar, which is apparently, the best movie ever made. :-) Then we took J to the airport and sent him off with lots of hugs. He unfortunately got stuck over night in Houston though, due to weather. Bless his heart and his mom's, who thankfully has friends who live in Houston, who came and rescued him from a night spent in a hotel room with strangers!

Now, we are preparing for Thanksgiving! Here's hoping for no last minutes trips to the grocery store on the day before Thanksgiving! Those are not my favorite. ; )

We certainly have a lot to be thankful for. Our list this year is very long! What an amazing God we serve!


November 21, 2014

Party on

Even though it seemed crazy throw a party when my Hubby was still SO sick, we realized it turned out to be some great therapy!
Zac said that he thought it bonded us closer together as a family during this hard time and he said it gave us all something to look forward to. He's so glad we did it.

And so we are on to the next party! : )

Not so much for therapy but because it just so happens that Nathan's trip out here coincides with Hubby's birthday and just about coincides with his!!!! Hooray!
(pretty sure that Hubby's celebration will be something very low key) : )

But we are going to throw Nathan a party with a bunch of his friends!
He'll be 20! And it will be a great way to see everyone at once!

The boys let me know that I can't be Pinterest-y so, really, how hard can it be?! ; )


November 19, 2014

Wednesdays in the Word

Two of our kids decided to join with others in our church, who are praying and fasting this week, for all the teens going to a youth retreat this weekend.
Super proud of them for their hearts for the Lord and their desire to see young people saved, delivered and healed!

I was encouraging them with Isaiah 58 because that is the chapter I love to read whenever I'm doing a fast. (not that I fast often or anything) I love what it says God does in answer to fasts! It is so powerful!

We are believing these things for all the students going this weekend:

~That God would "loose the bonds of wickedness" over their lives.
~That He would "undo heavy burdens and let the oppressed go free."
~And "break every yoke" of bondage they might be in. (verse 6)
~May "light break forth like the morning" in their lives and may any healing they need "spring forth speedily." (verse 8)
~From then on may they let "the Lord guide them continually." (verse 11)

Amen! Can't wait to hear the testimonies!


November 17, 2014

18th Birthday party!

We gave Joy a surprise party for her 18th birthday!!!
Oh my goodness! We were just sure the gig was up and she had it figured out at least four times last week! Oh the stress! LOL
It was pretty easy to throw her off the track by telling her that because of Hubby's cancer battle we were unable to do a party for her 18th. (Hubby said "Sure, throw the sick guy under the bus!") LOL : ) She understood of course, but we could tell that she was disappointed and that made the surprise so much bigger!

Eighteen sweet friends of hers came and helped us surprise her and she ended up being SO surprised that her knees were shaking!!!! : ) Bless her heart!

One of the highlights was that Hubby was able to see that moment and to give a little speech and pray a blessing over her like he's always done for our kids birthdays. So glad he was up for it! We planned the party in faith, hoping he would be.

Here are some pictures. We got our Pinterest on that day! ;)

A Kit Kat cake
And gluten-free cupcakes!
Everyone wrote notes to the birthday girl, which she loved!
Mug decorating with metallic sharpies!
We hung a frame that belonged to my grandparents from our tree for a 'photo booth.'
Andrew and I hung paper lanterns we found on sale at the party store and some Christmas lights at 11:00 PM the night before!

 Zac's girlfriend, Tiffany had an idea to make our outdoor party more fun! She rented a projector so that we could show a movie! So, we hung a sheet up where our porch swing normally is and it worked!

For dinner, I made my mom's Mexican Delight (taco salad bar) and the kids loved it.

We had a bonfire and made s'mores. Then we had popcorn and hot chocolate during the movie.
Having a house full of teenagers is one of our favorite things!
Foose-ball and video games

Happy EARLY 18th birthday, Joy!
We LOVE you!!! : )


November 16, 2014

Let the Christmas festivities begin

Joy and Andrew have a Christmas costume party to attend tonight! -I think that is such a great idea to have it now before there are too many Christmas events to fit on our calendars.

They are pretty excited. One of them is going as an elephant

and one is going as a homeless person.

(the homeless person felt the need to look up homeless people on Google to be sure to look authentic) LOL

Hope your weekend is this fun!

November 13, 2014

Jumping for joy

Our son, Nathan, ministers to youth at a church in CA and his precious church family has blessed him with a plane ticket home to see his dad!!!!! 
Isn't that the sweetest thing ever?! 
We are overwhelmed and grateful!
Hubby and I were both a teary mess!  ~I also did some jumping and squealing into the phone!

Nate is always the guy behind the camera. So, recently when we saw a video he made of a trip to Zion National Park with his friends, and he turned the camera around to show his face for a second, Hubby and I both said "Go back to his face!"
I paused the video and then took a picture of his face on the TV. LOL
Because we really miss this face!

And we sure can't wait to see it in person!

20 days and counting! Whoo-hooo!!!!!


November 11, 2014


 I'm happy to report that things
are looking up around here. : )
 Hubby was in horrific pain whenever he ate or drank anything and the pain meds were not working. (he finished 6 weeks of chemo and radiation a week and a half ago) 
But on Saturday, for no apparent reason, other than in answer to the prayers of so many friends, the pain improved! Thank you, Lord!
Whoo-hoo!!! Such a wonderful thing! 
He actually feels like he's starting to recover now!
He's weak as can be, and can't talk much, but he's smiling again! -He has even cracked a joke or two! 
What a wonderful thing it is to see some light at the end of this tunnel!

So thankful,

November 7, 2014

The road to recovery is a rough one

My sweet hubby is done with treatments but not done with the pain the treatments have caused. It is really a difficult time. Eating and drinking anything is tremendously painful. If you would, keep his ability to eat in prayer. ~Thanks!
 He says it feel like his esophagus is shredded. It is also burned, from the radiation, so yeah, the PAIN is something else.

Today, they are giving him an IV of fluids to keep him hydrated and to insure that his kidneys don't get damaged. The infusion room has four recliners for the patients and it is always freezing in there. Each patient has their own little TV, which they are suppose to plug head phones into, but never do. It can get pretty loud in there with crummy daytime TV. It is probably my hubby's least favorite place on earth to spend two + hours. Bless his heart. We bring his ipod and he listens to sermons or to classical music. Sometimes he tries to sleep through it.

In spite of all that he's going through, Hubby gave the OK for us to plan a happy, little event at our house soon, to bless a sweet somebody that we all love. (if Andrew has his way, it will be a big event) It has given us a little something to be excited for and whisper and scheme about. Sometimes I think we might be crazy for trying to pull this off right now, though. We just thought he would be feeling better by the time it took place. And well, it isn't looking like he will. Bless his heart.

We've been blessed by our church family with lots of meals to make things easier. They are wonderful.

Yesterday, we received cards signed by the men at Nathan's church in CA. Nate said the men got together to pray specifically for all those who have cancer. I started to read the cards and did not expect to see things like "Thank you for blessing us with your son" and "Your son has helped our teens and we are praying for you." and "You must be a great guy because the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, " and I realized I was crying, but for the first time lately, they were happy tears. : )


November 1, 2014

My Hero!!!!

Last day of radiation and chemotherapy!