May 31st, 2008

Here are pictures from the first part of our quiet week at Mema and Memama’s houses.

 First morning at Mema’s house Seth eats his orange under Gigi’s bed. Helping Mema dig outside. Jerome really enjoyed the shovel! Memama’s trampoline! Ian enjoyed bouncing for a minute, too. I love his hair! Jerome wanted to pull me on the swing and he got it going pretty good, too! Then Seth piled on too. Thanks for the picture, Mama! One evening Memama cooked her yummy southern dinner and invited us all over. While we were there a thunderstorm rolled in and we sat out on the porch for the full experience. It was a first for the boys! Sunshine was nervous and cuddled with Gigi through the thunder…on the porch swing! beautiful sky after the storm. Memama’s house after the storm. Bath time! They had so much fun in there almost every day! Hot morning. Our late riser. :-) That’s Seth in there, really! Nap time in Mema’s beautiful yellow room. Seth played for the longest time in Mema’s pantry. She let him take everything off the shelves! He was playing it was his house. :-) Seth didn’t appreciate Ian joining him. It took Jerome’s help to clean it all up, too! Pool time! He loves oranges! Seth was a sea turtle. I think it’s on his head because it wouldn’t stay on his back. Then he decided to try again! Jerome spent the longest time playing with this. I’m not sure why. He had just plopped down to crawl to me. I’m still trying to get a shot of him walking. Brad invited us over for tractor rides when he found out that Seth loves John Deere tractors! Off they go on a real John Deere! He also has a horse. I think his name is Chizum? I’m not sure Ian had seen a horse before. Thanks Brad! Jerome was keeping a close eye on Seth and the tractor. It’s not as dark as it looks, but it was in the woods and they were knocking down trees making new paths. So fun! Jerome’s turn! He actually got to steer! Ian’s turn! After the motor was turned off. :-) No, I’m not dressed for the weather, it was my bug protection.

Next I’ll post Ian’s birthday pics!

Posted in General | 1 Comment »
May 29th, 2008

After a week with Mema in Georgia and a couple days with the Davis’ in North Carolina we headed home yesterday starting out with a five hour drive from Charlotte to Atlanta at 8am. We got to see Mema again before returning the rental car and catching a 4pm flight. As we were stand-by passengers two days after Memorial Day we didn’t make the flight even though the availability looked alright, nor the next four flights. We spent the day going from gate to gate and actually boarded a plane and then deboarded after it was discovered there were no seats. The Lord made room for us on the very last flight out to Los Angeles last night and we walked through our door at almost two in the morning feeling very grateful to be here safe and all together.

 Waiting for the last flight out of Atlanta. You can see I was too tired to even notice where the focus was. :-p

I’ve had a quiet day here as we’ve taken turns napping, unpacking and being together. Mom took the boys to the park with the Barlow boys while Peter went to the dentist. He chipped his tooth last week while playing marco polo with Jerome in Memama’s pool. He said it didn’t hurt and the chip wasn’t very noticeable, but it felt so weird he kept feeling it with his tongue, which looked funny.  🙂

We get to have Peter home with us until Monday with no school! We’re getting so spoiled this is such a treat.

I’ll try to get pictures up from our trip soon, but I do have a wedding to finish editing also, so thanks for your patience!

Posted in General | No Comments »
May 17th, 2008

Yesterday as I realize that not only are we not going to be here for Ian’s first birthday, when we get home it will be Zachary and Anna’s birthdays. So Noel made an Angel’s Food cake and Mom hosted a little family party for Ian’s first birthday!  He got to splash in the pool a bit, eat Auntie Well’s stuffed shells for dinner, and play with his cousins. Thank you everyone for such a lovely evening in honor of Ian’s birthday!

 Thanks for the cake Auntie Well! He loved the candle! He was talking to it saying “Oooo!” Seth helped him blow it out… but he didn’t understand about blowing out candles. a sweet love with Daddy. Smiling at Papa and playing sleepy boy Ian’s first gift! Thank you for the present Uncle Scott, Auntie Donna, Zachary and Brennan! Happy birthday Ian Daniel!

We’re all packed up, now I just need to clear the bed of suitcases and hop in it! But first I thought I’d share a few thing I heard the boys say today:

“Did the man who’s gonna fly the airplane say it’s ok if it’s heavy?” asked Jerome who wants to pack huge rocks in his backpack to show Mema. He’s finally content with taking his gems book. 🙂

A conversation I overheard at lunch: Seth says “Jerome, tell me to eat.” Jerome says “Eat, Seth.” and Seth says “OK.” as he takes a bite of his sandwich.

“I’m cheersing them!” as Seth walks into his bedroom banging his sippy cups together.

Posted in General | No Comments »
May 14th, 2008

This afternoon Ian pulled out from under my dresser a little box in which I had kept of some scraps of paper and notebooks from years ago; journals, sermon notes, Bible studies, and unfinished poems. Before I stuffed it back into what I thought was it’s safe and hidden prison, I read over some of the words I’d copied to remember and they blessed me anew as the truths resounded in my soul. I thought I’d share some with you:

“Joy. A person who has not had the death grip of sin broken in his or her life cannot experience true joy…People who are genuinely broken by God know great joy. Brokenness changes our desires.

“God has no other plan for us. Brokenness is His way to blessing. Only as we are broken can we truly begin to understand the nature of God.”

“God is with us always, but brokenness makes us more sensitive to His presence.”

“God places only one condition on the blessings that He has for us through brokenness; we must be willing to submit to Him. After brokenness our lives can be the most fruitful and have the most purpose. The dawn after a very dark and storm wrecked night is glorious. Feeling joy again after a period of intense mourning can be ecstatic. A blessing can come in the wake of being broken.”

“He teaches us so that we might teach others. He imparts His insights so that we might share them with others. He gives us spiritual gifts so that we might use them to help others. He comforts and encourages us so that we might provide comfort and encouragement to others. He gives us financial prosperity so that we might benefit others and provide the means for the gospel to reach them.”

” Loss is virtually always a part of being broken.”

“God breaking us is aimed at bringing us to the point where we awaken with God’s purposes in mind. Our prayers must become, “What is it that you would want me to do, say, and be today in order to bring you glory?”

~Charles Stanley from “The Blessings of Brokenness”

“First, you do not have to be controlled by your feelings. Second, you are not the helpless prisoner of your past.

Forgiveness sees the needs of the offender.” ~Ed Wheat

“Therefore, let those who also suffer according to the will of God entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.” 1Peter 4:19

“If we would read the secret history of our enemies, we would find in each man’s life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.” ~Longfellow

Posted in General | No Comments »
May 12th, 2008

Despite the gloomy days before and after their wedding day, Saturday May 10th became a beautiful day with delicious sunshine that matched the joy radiating from Becky and Danny. They fell in love slowly at her dad’s church and he married them in that church. Becky and Danny, may the Lord bless your marriage all your days and may you find Him to be your center and source. Congratulations and thank you for the honor of photographing your wedding!

A big thank you to Noel for helping me out during the wedding and praying for me! Peter was able to come to the reception and put on the slideshow so everyone could see wedding pictures, and then we got to drive home together just the two of us, what a treat! Also a big thank you to Mom and Abby for keeping our boys all day.

Here are my favorites from the day:

       Her brother was not supposed to make it to her wedding as he’s in the military. He obviously surprised her. What a wonderful wedding gift!           Anna played the piano while Jane sang and the bride’s sister played the violin.   married!               {Raya }                {Raya }

Posted in General | 3 Comments »