Sunday, May 30, 2010

"Can I 'pend the night?"...

Several times over the course of our first year of marriage, we have had a little weekend visitor. 

Meet Madison:
This little bundle of spunk is our little niece. We are just crazy about her. When I look back at our first year of marriage, I think these spend the nights with her will be one of the things I will remember.

We've done everything from...
carving pumpkins in October

to nature hikes and movies.

to car dance parties

to books and webkinz, and plenty of junk food
"Oh yeah!"

We just love this little girl, and we hope she will always know that she can come to Uncle Jason and Aunt Chelsea's house for a good time... and whatever she wants. :)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Night Zero met the Queen

Today was a very important day in my puppy's life.

Many other canines will never be bestowed the honor that he was given on this night.

Even some humans deny themselves the privilege of this encounter.

It started as an ordinary Wednesday night. We went to church, with Zero in tow, as has been customary since he joined our family. Afterwards, Jas looked at me and uttered some sweet, sweet words...

"Hey Babe, do you want some ice cream?"

Sweeter words have nary been spoken.

So as we pull through the blessed drive-thru, Zero instinctively turns on the charm. The sweet girl at the window didn't have a chance. She gushed over him and then said...

"Do you let him have ice cream?"
Jason and I looked at each other.
"We never have before" Jason replied
"Well can I give him a little cup?"
"Well.....Why not!"

We put that sweet goodness up to his lips and he went. to. town. It was Hilarious! If I tried to move it away from him he would lunge forward until I gave it back. He absolutely loved it, we even had matching ice cream mustaches at one point. He slurped and slurped until it was all gone.

So without further ado; Zero, myself, and the Queen...

Oh Yes. 
God Bless the Queen.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Back Where I Come From

When I was away at college, I would sit and listen to Kenny Chesney's "Back Where I come from" on repeat and miss home. That should tell you two things about me...
1. I'm (proudly) from the South
2. I love my hometown

There are so many wonderful things about my hometown in north Georgia. I absolutely love it, and really can't see myself ever moving. Both Jason and my families are here, and we have deep roots in this town. In fact, my family has lived in the county I live in now for FIVE generations. And you know, I'm pretty proud of that.

Although my town has changed A LOT over the past 10 years, there are still some awesome secrets I can let you in on...

1. R & M Sandwhich Shoppe
This is in our old downtown area, and it is, without a doubt, the BEST sandwich you will ever put in your mouth. It's actually my husbands favorite place to eat in the world. He would rather have a Donna Special than to a pricey steak house any day. Which, by the way, when Jason walks in the ladies look at him, he smiles, and they put his order in because they already know what he wants. How is that for hometown?

2. The people
I am a old southern girl and I am all about some "good 'ol boys". Simple southern people are my favorite and we have quite a few still around here. One perfect example is Mr. Billy from the town shoe shop:

That my friends is our town's cobbler. This is old town at it's best. He has been fixin shoes for over 50 years. I took a pair of heels to him not long ago because the buckle had fallen off of them. He replaced the buckle and sewed up the other one to prevent it from coming off, and the crazy amazing part...He charged me .75 cents. I've bought gum for more than that. 

3. Location, Location, Location

Our water tower boasts that our town is "where metro meets the mountains" which is a nice way to describe my town. We are about 45 minutes from Atlanta, but still a smaller (although growing) southern town in the mountains. I'm lovin lately that I can hop in my car and meet my friends from college in Atlanta, but still come home to the "country" too. 
I'm also so thankful to teach in the county that I do. We are so blessed with resources and our student population. In my biased opinion, we have awesome schools.

4. I think the main reason I love my town is because it holds all the places which hold my memories, and mainly like I said earlier is that it has all of these people just a few miles down the road...

My family and I with My great Aunt Bonnie at the church I grew up in (another reason to love my town: small country churches, what could be better?).

Back where I come from 
where I'll be when it's said and done
I'm proud as anyone
Back where I come from.

Monday, May 17, 2010

You're gonna miss this...

    I've said this before, but I really want to use this blog as a keeper of my memories. When I don't have anything "profound" to say, I will usually pass on the blogging (ergo the week hiatuses), but I think what may be just as precious to be in the future will be recording what everyday looks like for me right now. Sometimes it feels like this no-kids-no-house time of my life isn't really worth recording or reporting, but I KNOW in just a few years I will be missing our small apartment and lazy weekends...

   Last Friday night, Jason and I went to Taco Mac for dinner. He wasn't feeling well, but we still had a nice time. There was a little boy at a table next to ours and Jason waved and talked to him. He ALWAYS does that and I wonder if the mothers think he is crazy, but I secretly love it. I can not wait to see him be a dad. After dinner, we went to Kohl's and I actually bought some clothes (this never happens). I am so so indecisive and I think about whatever I buy for a long time, but I was able to talk myself into some longer khaki shorts (mine from last summer don't fit :/ ), a black t-shirt (my other one has a hole in it), and my BEST purchase an adorable Candies jacket that came with a cute pink flower. I am liking buying jackets lately, What Not to Wear has convinced me of their prowess. It's a tan-ish color and it is short and has a cute tie for a belt. I wore the jacket yesterday and today! I also bought a frame for my mom to make her mother's day present. We stayed in Kohl's for 2 hours, and my sister even hooked me up with her discount. I must say that I have the most wonderful husband ever who held stuff, told me what looked good, and helped me make decisions for those two hours all while coughing up a lung. He really is the best.

I wrote this last week and never finished, doh! I'll just pick up with this weekend...

     Friday was hilariously perfect. Jason worked until about 6, and when he got home we were acting like total goof balls. I love this about us. We laid in the floor and played with Zero and just cracked up laughing at him! He is so funny with his toys. Before we knew it, it was 7:30 and we really didn't feel like going anywhere anyways. So I changed into basketball shorts and a t-shirt, threw my hair in a pony tail, and we loaded up with the pup and headed to Taco Bell drive in. Oh yes we did. And you know what? It was awesome!! It was that perfect windows-down-music-on-look-over-at-the-one-you-love-and-sigh moments. I would have rather been doing that than at Stony River in a designer dress. When you are with the one you truly love, anything is fun. When we got home we watched the movie Avatar, it's a good movie! And even better is listening to Jason comment on how CLEAR the picture is and how BEAUTIFUL the shot is. That boy sure does love his TV and blu-rays. While watching (I'm a multi-tasker) I found the first two chapters of the book Sheet Music online. I read the first chapter and it was so spot on, I told Jason I wanted to get it (after checking to see if I could get it at the library for free first of course). It is a GREAT book and I really recommend it!! You can look up the subject matter yourself. We will see if I get brave enough to blog on it...

  Saturday Jason woke up SUPER early and went in to work. He doesn't usually work on Saturdays, but our new budget plan has his overtime buying our short term wants (paintball gun, new computer, etc). So Jas has been volunteering to work extra. I love that he is such a hard worker. He called me at 9:30 to say he was coming home so I decided that maybe I should get out of bed, haha. When he got home, we did our Saturday morning cleaning routine. Afterwards I had a family house warming party to go to and Jason went to FYE to look at Blu-rays (he loves them I tell you). When we both got back home, we went to Olive Garden for dinner with my in-laws, then to Books-a-million, and Wal-mart for the week's groceries (we usually do this in the morning). I love that we grocery shop together. Can you tell that I think my husband is the man?

   Sunday, oh wonderful Sunday, is my favorite! Church was great as always. I totally feel like my battery gets recharged every time I go to church. We came home and ate Olive Garden left overs for lunch (Jas swears the fettuccine alfredo is actually better heated up than the first time you eat it). I read some more in my book (very inspiring), Jason napped, bliss bliss bliss. At 530 we headed to choir practice (well, Jas dropped me off). I LOVE choir practice, singing+praising Jesus, what could be better? We are working on this beautiful song called "New Jerusalem" and  I got a solo in a song called "Healer in the House", two great songs! Sunday night church was was just wonderful of course, the spirit is just so sweet there. Brad preached on having enough faith to have joy!

  I just love weekends and my church and my husband, I know I will look back on this time of my life with such fondness. Life is grand.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Being Present

    There's a passage from Romans that once adorned the walls of my dorm room. I remember when I created the scrapbook frame project with my $1.00 Ikea frames. I was looking for a mantra for the year, for life even, and I came upon the beauty that is Romans 12 from the message translation. Now I hope you'll check out all of it, but it's the first line that has been ringing in my mind for the past several days...

Love from the center of who you are.

  What does that mean? What would that look like? It is difficult to explain, but I certainly know when I've spent my day being real and centered and when I haven't. I've been thinking a lot lately about just how often I just go through the motions. How many opportunities to be grateful have I rushed through? How many miracles have I overlooked? How often have I missed the beauty of a simple pleasure? How many times have I traded abundant life for the lies of the evil one?

Too many. Too often.

Just the other day I was listening to thoughts that relate to this topic from a source that shall remain nameless.

Ok fine, it was Oprah, don't judge. 

Anyways they were talking about being a food addict (hello biggest struggle of my life), and how the reason you  I reach for a snickers at the end of the bad day isn't because we are hungry or tired or whatever lie we tell ourselves. It's because we want to escape from whatever is plaguing us. In the moment we think the snickers or the chocolate cake or the potato chips will make us happy and fulfilled, just like someone who looks to drugs or alcohol for that fulfillment, but of course contentment can not be found there.

They went on to say that the secret to combating this was to center back on god. Of course, they then said that "god" meant "whatever was real to you" and some other new age mumbo jumbo crap about how that could be mystery or possibility or the way you feel in nature (hope that thing that is real is powerful enough to save you at the end of your life, but that's another post entirely). Even with the skewed implementation, the message was not lost on me. Because I know that at the center of who I am, there lives the POWER of the HOLY SPIRIT! And that comforter has all power and all victories over sin.

Because every time I've traded that wonderful abundant life for cheap plastic thrills and lies, I have sinned. But more and more I'm realizing that, the power of Christ in me can conquer all. It can make my paths straight. My worries disappear. My marriage thrive. My relationships fruitful. 

My life count.

But yanno, this is nothing new. Just a new way of saying the same beautiful Gospel of Christ in me, the hope of glory.

But now I see that those days where I am checked out and wishing the minutes on by, that in that moment, I must cry out to the power of the Holy Spirit and ask His presence to make me present in each moment I am blessed with.

I would hate to miss out one more minute of abundant life.

Because it sure is good stuff. 

Saturday, May 8, 2010

There is coming a day...

When I was a child, the thought of Jesus coming back really scared me, but as I have matured in my faith I have  become less frightened and more excited about the thought of my Savior returning. Although my life is abundant and full and I still long to experience things on earth like having babies, I realize that there Is NOTHING on earth that can even compare to being with Jesus in Heaven (not even being a mother)! So when I discovered this on another blog, I became so excited!! 
You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen,
but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.
There will be famines and EARTHQUAKES in various places.

Matthew 24:6-7 {NIV}
January 3 – Solomon Islands
January 5 – Costa Rica
January 10 – Humboldt County, California
January 12 – Haiti
January 19 – Cayman Islands
January 24 – Gaua {volcanic eruption}
January 26 – Ryukyu Islands, Japan
January 27 – Maule, Chile
February 5 – Montserrat, Caribbean Sea
February 27 – Salta, Argentina
March 4 – Taiwan
March 5 – Island of Sumatra
March 8 – Turkey
March 11 – Pichilemu, Chile
March 14 – Indonesia
March 14 – Japan
March 16 – California
March 21, Cuba
March 21 – Iceland {volcanic eruption}
March 25 – Manila, Philippines
April 4 – Baja California, Mexico
April 6 – Indonesia
April 11 – Solomon Islands
April 11 – Spain
April 13 – China
April 15 – Utah
April 26 – Taiwan
These are just the earthquakes listed as significant! So far in 2010, there have been 225,420 deaths due to earthquakes. Wow.

May we all live with a sense of urgency that Jesus could come back any day! May we realize that days are few and that we have a responsibility to share the hope we have found. May we be found faithful.
Jesus, Come quickly! We long for you! We want to see your glory! Nothing compares to you!