Monday, December 21, 2009

What it's all about

Well, we had a busy weekend, but a really good one!

Have I mentioned that our small group at church is really awesome? Well, it is. We're blessed to be a part of a great group of people who truly love and are seeking after God. It seems like the group as a whole has developed a desire for service to those around us, particularly those in need. We've become involved with a local boys' home, and the guys in the group regularly go to visit and share with them, and many of them have accepted Christ. I've heard the guys talk about them a lot, and I was so excited that this past Friday night I got to finally meet them.

We held a Christmas party for the boys, and it was great. We had dinner, took a "Christmas quiz", had karaoke, a message from our old pastor, and gave them some gifts. Sitting at our table was a boy named Austin who had just turned 14. He was shy, and SO sweet, and I just wanted to take him home with us so badly. There was also a boy named Calvin who was hilarious and so much fun. He totally tried to cheat on the Christmas quiz, but we love him anyway.

Probably my favorite moment of the whole evening was this:
(sorry these pics are so dark. I think our camera's on the fritz)
This boys' name is Cody, and early into the party he came and asked Mike if he would play guitar for him while he sang 'Amazing Grace' on stage. Trust me when I say that this sweet guy probably couldn't carry a tune in a bucket, but his heart was 100% into it. I have no doubt Jesus was smiling and soaking it up. It totally made me cry. My other favorite moment of the evening was probably the kid singing 'Annie are you Okay' on karaoke. Nothing says Merry Christmas like that. Good times.

Here's Mike with Calvin:

And here they all are, along with a few of our guys:

Our group has also adopted a needy family in our area as well. This family has 8 children and the Dad was in a motorcycle accident about a year ago which has left him paralyzed from the chest down. They just have nothing, and I mean nothing. So we all got the opportunity to buy the family Christmas gifts this year, and on Sunday afternoon a few of us were privileged to go and deliver them. Boy does it put things in perspective!

The whole family
Iris in front of all the presents!

I'm so grateful to have opportunities like these, especially at Christmastime. As far as honoring Christ, His birth, and what He came to do, I don't know if there's much that's more fitting.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Brotherly Love

Sneaker and Sam have become pretty good buddies!

I thought it was pretty cute and got so absorbed in taking pictures, that I forgot about my sandwich on the stove and ended up with this for lunch:
Oh well, it was worth it!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things

Since it's Christmastime and all, I thought I should reflect on a few of my favorite things, and the things that I'm really thankful for... in no particular order.

* Sam dancing

* Our laptop with wireless internet

* A fire in the fireplace

* The health of my family

* Multiple cup holders on our stroller

* The sound of the garage door opening and knowing Mike is about to walk through the door

* Online shopping (see post below)

* Sam laughing

* Good friends who spur me on in my walk with the Lord

* The glee at bathtime

* Mike, in every way

* Sermon podcasts, particularly those by Matt Chandler

* Peaceful naptimes

* The childcare workers at church

These guys pretty much sum it up. Mike's getting some Sam kisses :)

Monday, December 14, 2009

Adventures in Christmas Shopping

Sam and I ventured out today to try and finish up some Christmas shopping. He's a typical boy and doesn't usually enjoy our shopping times together, so I've learned to keep it to one stop. He'll only take so much in-and-out of purgatory, i.e. his car seat, so I've learned to use strategery when it comes to this.

Today I pushed it past the once in and out of seat norm, and suffered the consequences. I don't know that we'll be allowed back into the JCPenney on the service road ever again. Sorry, my fellow shoppers. I should have known better than not to disrupt the car seat gods on such a busy shopping day whilst nearing nap time.

After arriving home in a pool of sweat, blood and tears I have vowed to do all of my Christmas shopping online next year.

That's all I have to say about that.

P.S. I just found out that there is a Hobby Lobby going in right near the house... within like a 5 minute drive!! It's a happy day after all.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Anybody still out there?

Again, I'm sorry I haven't been around lately. The last month and a half or so, we've been doing the rounds of sickness and I've also been doing some work for my old employer during my "down time". But I'm hoping all of that's dying down now, and posting will pick back up!

We had a great Thanksgiving with the Pruitts on the farm! Sam loves being out there where he can roam free outside, play with all 3 dogs, terrorize the one poor cat, and go up and down and up and down and up and down the stairs.

With Grandma on the all-toys-are-now-ruined-for-me stairs

Exploring the vast wilderness with his awesome new wagon

Here we all are on Thanksgiving day!

While we were in town, we went out to the Woolaroc Wonderland of lights

Corraling Sam in one of the museums. They have a narwhal horn here, which always impresses me

We got our Christmas tree up, and I'm proud to report that Sam is pretty well tree-trained! We still have the occasional stealthy ornament kidnapping, but overall he does really well around the Christmas tree, and seems to be enjoying it.

The fireplace. I'm still trying to figure out how to hang the stockings. Any suggestions?

The kitchen table. Most of our Christmas decor has been put roughly 3 feet high or more.

And, if I can get the video to load, here's a clip of Sam "finishing" his dinner last night. He just caught on to this trick, and we still get too much of a kick out of it to really do any reprimanding, i.e., responsible parenting.

Hope ya'll have been doing well!