Friday, August 31, 2007

Off and Running . . .

We're headed to the hills to pick huckleberries. See you Tuesday with stories of our travels!

Have a great weekend . . .

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Thankful Thursday



Sometimes, Colton cracks me up with his prayers (see below). Other times, his serious little requests just make my heart burst . . .

Here is last night's offering:

"Dear Jesus, thank you for this day.

Thank you for me and Chancey and please keep us safe.

Thank you for protecting me.

Even when I'm scared.

Thank you that you are always with me.

And thank you that I can't always see you, but you are still there.

Even in the dark.

And thank you for protecting me.

And, Amen!"

Lord, thank you so much for the fervent innocence of my children's prayers, thankfulness, and worship. May I be more like them each day.

For more Thankful Thursday offerings, visit Iris at Sting My Heart.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Sweet, Sweet Smell of Home

From Colton's prayer night-before-last:


....."And, Dear Jesus, please help mommy to buy some more of that smelly stuff in a can, because Chancey's toots sure stink today.

And Dear Jesus...

Thanks....

And, Amen!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Rose-Tinted Spectacles

"The optimist looks at the world through rose-tinted spectacles" -English Proverb
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Yesterday was the big yearly visit to the eye doctor for both boys. For Chance, this is all old-hat. For Colton, it was his first time. He had so many questions about all the machines and gadgets - and both the doctor and Chance were patient to answer them again and again.
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Chance's goal was to convince our ophthalmologist that he no longer needed his glasses. Let me tell you, she is Superwoman. Because, by the time she was done, she had told Chance that he was right - he didn't need his glasses to be able to see - but also had him convinced that, because his brain would have to work so hard to overcome his farsightedness, he would probably be slower in school, not seem as smart, have a hard time concentrating quickly on a pitched baseball, etc., etc., etc. By the end of her speech, Chance decided he would still wear his glasses, but was still beaming because "he knew he was right about that." The lady's a genius - I guess that's why she could survive like 25 years of schooling, and now she makes the big, Big, BIG bucks!
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So, Chance's prescription stayed virtually the same, and we learned that little-brother Colton will get glasses as well. His eyes, as far as his prescription is concerned, are pretty lopsided. So, we will spend the next year watching pretty closely to make sure his weaker eye doesn't turn into a lazy one. Thankfully, I have much experience on how things look when they start to go lazy (namely, the boys whenever the chore-chart comes out), so I'm sure I'll see the signs right away.
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After work, we made a trip to the glasses store (aka Wal-Mart). Hey, I know I've mentioned it before, but if you can't get it at the Wal-Mart or the Ranch & Home, we just plain don't need it around our house (the scrapbook store is my personal exception to Matt's house rule ;-)
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The boys spent much time and brain-energy contemplating the perfect frames to match their ultimate coolness and look they each desire for the next 12 months. Colton's was pretty simple, as far as he was concerned - they needed to be blue, he needed to look like Elijah, and he needed to look sooooo handsome. Unfortunately, aside from the blue requirement, he thought he looked sooo good in each pair he tried on. And, not that I'm biased or anything, he did look pretty dang cute. The gals helping us were cracking up at each new rendition of "How Do You Like Me Now!!!" Mom had a few more requirements (titanium/bendable frames, scratch-proof lenses, child-proof warranty, etc), but thankfully, we found some frames that fit the bill for all of the above. I'll let you be the judge . . .

Chance also had some requirements, but they weren't quite as clear. He thought he wanted something kind of more squarish than his current frames, but he wasn't quite sure, and if he could just try a bunch on, he'd know them when he saw them. We decided that he's old enough and responsible enough to get regular frames, which gave him more selection than just the titanium/bendable frames. He also made the big leap into the lenses that transition into sunglasses when you are outside - this meant that mom had to sacrifice the kid-proof, scratch-proof coating, because you can't have both. But, Chance promised over and over that he would put his glasses away every time he took them off, so they'd have no chance of getting scratched. I'm sure that all grandparents reading this will help me enforce this rule when he is visiting? And, yep, you are right, I still bought the kid-proof insurance, anyway. He chose some really sophisticated looking frames, which will still look really good as sunglasses when he's outside. Here they are . . .


So, to top our day off, Colton cried and threw himself on the ground when the gal said we'd have the glasses back in 12 days. Yes, I told him about 7 or 125 times that he wouldn't get to take them home that day, but apparently it didn't sink in.

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Chance was very concerned that I was taking pictures of glasses with stickers on them. Poor little thing - it's almost been a year, and he still doesn't get this blogging thing yet!!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Catch, Ketchup, and Catching Up

Wow, that was some break. We have had a busy, busy August - I am finally feeling better - things are kind of getting back to normal - and yet, I am still overwhelmed to try and catch up on all the posts I missed! Except, I am making a firm decision to feel no guilt about missed posts, use this Catchup post to catch you all up, and move forward from here. Keep Moving Forward . . . .
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Matt has been gone most of August for work. The single-mommy thing made me crazy, drove the kids crazy, made me appreciate all those military moms & dads out there, and made me appreciate my husband so much more. This is the last week, so there is light at the end of the tunnel, and I'm ready to be a married gal again!
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The first weekend of August, Chance got to throw out the first pitch at the Pirates game. It was so cool. He was pretty nervous, and I was afraid he would back out. But, the guy catching for that game was one of his coaches at baseball camp, and I think that boosted his confidence a bit. He went out there all by himself when the announcer called him out - he looked so tiny standing on that pitcher's mound!! He threw a great pitch, and then got an autographed ball from the catcher - a dream come true for him, for sure.
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The next weekend, we hosted a family BBQ for all Matt's family. It was a ton of fun - we had 5 RV's dotting our yard (thank goodness for a big yard), the guys brought their guns to have some shooting on the range (please, please, watch out for the cattle!), lots of people carpooled up for the big meal on Saturday, and we had the biggest Wii tournament ever! Watching Granny step up to the plate and grab the Wii controller to bowl and play baseball was one of the funnest moments of the weekend.
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Our county fair started that next week, and Wednesday was Demo Derby night. Darla and I sweet-talked our way into the box seats from work, so we met for pizza and then headed to the fairgrounds for the festivities. What a blast! We had a great time betting on the heat races, ducking the flying dirt-clods, and cheering on our favorite drivers. I think both boys liked the car painted like Lightning McQueen the best. It was just plain-ol' redneck fun!
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That Friday we left for our big camping trip of the year. We headed out about 2:00 for the looong drive to lake Pend Oreille in Idaho. The weather was not the greatest - we got lots of rain - but we still had tons of fun. We actually relaxed for a change. We all got a few naps logged in the books, everyone learned how to play Mexican Train Dominoes and remembered how to play Blokus. There was much visiting, much hot cocoa, and even more good food. It finally cleared up enough on Tuesday to head to Silverwood, and we definitely got our money's worth! We were pulling up just as the park opened, and by the time we gathered our things that night, they were kicking us out the gates trying to close! The additions to the water park are fantastic, and Colton is getting old enough to really enjoy the different rides - except he still got scared on the log ride, and very angry at Rich for putting a quarter in the machine to spray us on the way by. All that rain and visiting time allowed us to plan a few trips for next year, so we already have some things to look forward to!
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This past weekend, we helped put some finishing touches on Chance's new school. It looks so, so nice. Inspections were today, so our fingers are crossed. If we passed, school will start on Wednesday. I think Chance started getting a little more excited, once he saw a more finished product of his new school, his new classroom, the lunch room, etc.
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It's been a whirlwind, and a fun one for sure! We are gearing up for huckleberry picking this weekend - one last hoorah before the "normal" fall schedule kicks in.

Friday, August 17, 2007

8 is Getting to be Such a BIG Number!

Happy Birthday, Chance!
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Today is Chance's 8th birthday - my goodness, how did that happen?
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Chance, you are turning into such a young man - often too mature and serious for your mere 8 years. I love that you step up to be the "man of the house" when your dad has to be out of town, but can still get on the floor and be totally silly playing with your little brother. You are a fabulous big brother, a caring friend, a helpful son, and a source of joy to our household.
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I love you! -Mom
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Mark Harris - Find Your Wings
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It's only for a moment you are mine to hold
The plans that heaven has for you
Will all too soon unfold
So many different prayers I'll pray
For all that you might do
But most of all I'll want to know
You're walking in the truth
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And If I never told you
I want you to know
As I watch you grow
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I pray that God would fill your heart with dreams
And that faith gives you the courage
To dare to do great things
I'm here for you whatever this life brings
So let my love give you roots
And help you find your wings
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May passion be the wind
That leads you through your days
And may conviction keep you strong
Guide you on your way
May there be many moments
That make your life so sweet
Oh, but more than memories
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I pray that God would fill your heart with dreams
And that faith gives you the courage
To dare to do great things
I'm here for you whatever this life brings
So let my love give you roots
And help you find your wings
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It's not living if you don't reach for the sky
I'll have tears as you take off
But I'll cheer as you fly
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I pray that God would fill your heart with dreams
And that faith gives you the courage
To dare to do great things
I'm here for you whatever this life brings
So let my love give you roots
And help you find your wings

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Bloggity Break

In case you can't tell, I'm on a bit of a bloggity break! I haven't felt too well, and a foggy head does not make for good blogging material.

To add to it, we are headed on vacation tomorrow.

So, aside from Chance's birthday post, no blog until late next week (sorry Grandmas!).

But, we have been doing tons of fun stuff, so I will have much material to report once we return!

Hope all is well with all my friends - talk to you soon . . .

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Better Than I Deserve

Matt and I both listen to Dave Ramsey a lot. ---Insert: due to severe inequality of the Sirius radio receiver, as well as availability during show hours, Matt gets to listen waaayyyyy more often than I do. But I'm not bitter, nope, not a bit.---- Anyway, he is a Christian money counselor whose goal is to get America out of debt. He does a great job dealing with the people who call in, and Matt and I are anxious for the day we get to call in and do our Victory Shout. I'm sure I'll be blogging about that when it happens.




Anyway, Dave's tag line, whenever a caller asks how he's doing, is "better than I deserve." Isn't that the truth for all of us?? Sometimes, we get a bit downtrodden and thinking otherwise, but usually it only takes a look around to see all of the blessings we have right in front of our noses.



All of this to say that last weekend, we had a "better than we deserve" kind of weekend.




We had an art show for our metal business in Tri-Cities, and had reservations to stay at a hotel for two nights. When we checked in, we were expecting a room like this . . .



. . . and, through some sort of unbeknownst upgrade, ended up with something more like this!


It had a kitchen, dining table, living area, separate bedroom, jacuzzi tub, dual-head shower - the works! We spent a little bit of time trying to decide if we should go back to the front desk and tell them of their error - we certainly did not pay for a room this nice. Admittedly, we spent very little time pondering this option - we had to check out our new digs for the weekend!

We had decided that the folks at the front desk were very capable individuals, and because we were a member of this chain's rewards club, we must have gotten some manna from heaven, in the form of this free upgrade. Although, after deciding this, we did double-check our check-in papers, to make sure the rate I had initialed hadn't changed from the time we were at the front desk to the time that we entered the suite.

Isn't is fun when things like that happen? Sometimes, you get a very real reminder that your life, no matter what situation you are currently in, is "better than you deserve." After all, aside from grace, if the Lord gave us what we deserved, we'd be a sorry lot, indeed.