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

January 29, 2017

Graduations for us both

Andrew graduates from high school in June and we are trying to decide how we want to go about honoring him. Our other kids all participated in a state-wide  home school ceremony, which they informed me was way more for my benefit than theirs. : )
One draw back is that they don't really feel like a 'class' since they have never met the other 200 kids until that weekend. LOL
But it is a beautiful ceremony! -And the sweetest form of agony ever. ; )
Agony, in that, by the time you hear the achievements (and there are many) and the future plans of EVERY single student, you've been there 4 hours before they ever get to toss their caps in the air. Yeah, it isn't for the faint of heart. ; )
-My kids will never forget those who gave up their ENTIRE Sundays to sit through this out of love for them.

So, there has been lots of discussion around here about doing something different for Andrew. Mainly because without his dad here, he frankly thought it would be too sad. He still does.
And I can't picture sitting in the parents section alone -or at least not without bawling my eyes out. But there isn't a whole lot about life that isn't painful right now. And I think it might be worse if we downplay his graduation in hopes of making it easier. He deserves to be honored.
My best friend and her son are coming. (they saw all our other kids graduate except for Zac because their niece graduated on the same day) They said they aren't missing Andrew's and are flying out here. (insert a million hearts and a crying emoji or two)
I totally plan on trying to sneak her into the parents section with me no matter how strict the rules are!

Speaking of school, as of February 13th, all of my college-age kids will be back in their various schools. I'm so thrilled about that!!! They all had to take a break during hubby's cancer battle and beyond, understandably so.
 -Except for Andrew, who is a high school student and didn't have that luxury. (another reason to honor him!)
Seeing them all get back to pursuing their goals, means so much to me and is truly worth celebrating.
I know their dad would be so proud of their determination and perseverance. I am.

The other thing we've been trying to figure out, is how we are going to celebrate the end of my 19 year homeschooling career! We've had some extravagant ideas and are now scaling way back to some more realistic, budget-friendly ones. : )
No matter what, it will be fun!
I'm so grateful for this part of God's plan for our family. And I'll be excited to be done. -Speaking of which, I have philosophy to correct.


January 22, 2017

Fun things

We are watching football and expecting a thunderstorm. Our city is under a tornado watch tonight, which never happens. This might be a short post since we've already lost power once.

I am loving the La La Land soundtrack. If you need some happy music in your life, give it a try.

I got a Simply Fit board with one of my Christmas gift cards and it is so much fun to do while watching TV.

I have no idea if it is working yet, but I will totally be good at a rip stick or a skateboard if need be, someday. LOL

Yesterday, I went to my happy place! I literally let out a scream when I saw how beautiful it looked.

I had a little Chick-fil-A picnic, read a book and walked to the ice cream shop for a pistachio cone. Definitely not as fun by myself, since this was how my hubby and I spent many dates. But this verse came to mind while I licked my drippy cone:
"I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content." Phil. 4:11 (not there yet)

I've had a lot of sandwiches stolen over the years and I'm happy to say there are some polite seagulls in the world and this was one. LOL

My sweet kids blessed me with these today! They are the sweetest!

This is my beautiful daughter and my grand-dog! LOL

She's a sweet LITTLE thing who is as fast as lightening and always reminds me of:

Did I tell you that we finally have good fish tacos in FL?

 Nathan was afraid to tell me that Rubio's is here now because he said I might not move to CA someday if I can eat good Mexican food here. LOL

I am loving this book, which is all about how God's love should cause us to DO.

Well, that's all for now. Have a great week! 

January 11, 2017

Remembering His Faithfulness

There was a time when my Hubby and I really wanted to move. We REALLY needed a larger house to raise our four kids in.
And then out of the blue, a friend from church had a house that he was flipping. We liked it and we told him what we could afford. Amazingly enough, instead of laughing, he said "Sounds good" and shook my Hubby's hand.

And I thought we were moving!
(silly me!)

Then the Lord directed me to this verse and my heart sank:
 'This persuasion is not from the one who calls you." (whoa!)

The next day, one of our neighbors told us that he was PRAYING to God that we would not move. This was extremely surprising because he was an atheist!

That's when I knew for sure that we weren't moving!
Because God delights in revealing Himself to people!
I remember thinking/whining: "Why did he have to start praying?!"  LOL

It was because our children and his children were the very best of friends and he desperately wanted us to stay in our house so they could keep growing up together. (so sweet!)

So, he prayed and every single thing abovut buying that house fell apart after that.

But here's the rest of the story:

-Our kids did grow up together and we made some wonderful memories. We even vacationed together and spent holidays together!

-We did get to raise our kids in a bigger house but it was still this house. God sent a friend, who voluntarily gave 6 months of his life, to put an addition on our house and would only let us pay in him in home cooked meals!  How crazy is that?!

-The very best part of that story is that the atheist didn't stay an atheist!
He gave his life to Christ six years later!
How good is God?

"A man's heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps."
Prov. 16:9-10


January 3, 2017

Christmas break

I have had the week between Christmas and New Year's off from work and it has been so much fun!
What a gift! It has been such a blessing to be able to spend this week with all of my kids!

And it has been so much like old times! Especially the part where I get to homeschool in my pjs and
cook for the whole gang!
I've also read books, exercised, shopped and had fun hanging out with whichever kid(s) aren't working.

We've loved having Nathan here!

And note to self: Never take "Christmas down" the day after ever again. It made everyone sad
and they haven't let me forget it. LOL

Our final celebration of the season is Zac's birthday! Which we celebrated early, yesterday, because everyone had the day off. 
He will be 24 on Thursday! 

We had a great time together at Disney Springs! If you know Zac, then you know that nothing means more to him than family time. So it was a huge blessing to him that Nate is still here for the fun!

Happy Birthday, Zac!
You mean the world to us!