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Thursday, May 4, 2017


Do you ever look back at something and think, "Whew, I made it!".  I'm sure you have.  I have too, just today, in fact!  Last Thursday morning I left home. I knew I wouldn't be back home again until today, a week later.  As I began to think about all that was going to happen in that week, I got all spastic. I don't worry, for the most part, but I get so excited about it all that spastic is the best way to describe it.  Crazy might be a better description, though. Ha ha!

Once I had my clothes out for the week, it helped. I wasn't quite as spastic! Packing for that long means making some decisions and not knowing the weather conditions made that difficult. To help, I just took probably a third (maybe more) of my clothes.

When I drove away from the house, I was completely relieved.  Everything I had thought about and planned for a month or so was on its way to happening. No more thinking about it. Now it was time to DO it!  However, many things that happened during the past week were not planned. And that made the week even more memorable!

This post is more for myself, just to remember this past week.  I'm putting details I want to remember.
It's a day by day glance...with details.

Made the meat, rice, beans and picked up cake....made floral decoration...gathered party supplies, etc.
Stayed up making Jacob's high school graduation announcements, paid extra to get some stamped and mailed from Shutterfly and also extra to have some shipped here quickly for he and Joe to take care of before they left Friday. (more about that at the end of this post).

And Tyler wanted a cell phone....
We were going to get him one - a non-smart phone -  in the summer to take to camps, but decided he should get one for the FFA Chorus time. We didn't tell him, though! Wednesday night after Bible class we staged a funny thing. I hid the phone in the love seat where Tyler sits.  I watched from the couch. Jacob was gonna video it but had run out of storage.  Joe rang Tyler's phone.  Nothing.  Not even a budge.  Joe rang again.  Tyler even moved his hand and foot to the phone's ringtone. He finally realized no one was answering the phone, looked around and all of us, and jumped up to start digging in the love seat!! It was GREAT!! He was excited then a little teasingly "upset" that we hadn't told him he was getting one and let him do all of this list of "why Tyler needs a phone" he did. It was funny!

Met Zachary at Oklahoma City for his doctor's appointment.
Joe got Jacob's graduation announcements that Jacob needed to take to school and mailed a few I had forgotten to put on the mailing list to Shutterfly.
Unloaded Lauren's college graduation cake and taco meat/chicken, beans, rice, other food stuff, and my luggage at brother and sister-in-law's.
Lauren came to switch cars with me while I was unloading so that she could pack some college apartment stuff in it.
Went out to Lauren's car to leave only to discover I had no purse (no money, no nothing).
Went to her apartment to get my purse, phone charger, etc.
Picked up prescription for Zachary. Waited in parking lot for prescription to be called in for another son (never happened). Shopped a few hours for food for Lauren's college graduation.
Took all the bought stuff to bro/sis-in-laws' and began getting food stuff together (Zachary helped.) Decorated grad party table.
Responded to texts (many overdue and way late due to phone being on silent).
Went to sleep about 2:30 a.m. listening to the thunderstorm and their house in Edmond.

Woke up at 6:00 a.m.  Got ready FIRST (other thank clothes) rather than waiting until everything was done (yay me. I NEVER do that!).
Finished preparing food things.  Stuck food in the oven.
Decorated patio tables outside.
Couldn't find the dish soap to wash the dishes (thankfully my brother-in-law came in and showed me it was in a pump RIGHT ON THE GRANITE surface by the sink. OH BOY! I had to put that detail in. It's part of the funny stories from the week!!)
Realized it was 9:10 and I was wanted to leave for Lauren's college graduation at 9:30. Hurried and washed the dishes and made it out the door at 9:30!!  Yay! I changed quickly!
Made it to graduation. Waiting on my husband, three sons, one son's girlfriend, and my parents who were there from Lubbock.
While I was at graduation, my brother-in-law ordered the "set ups" from Ted's Cafe (homemade tortillas, chips, salsa, queso) and went to get it...he lowered the temps on all of the food (I had forgotten to).  My sister-in-law got home from her mom's early morning minor surgery and had the other food out on the island when we got there.
Many family members and friends came to join in the celebration of dinner, cake, grad gifts, pictures, and fellowship. Took lots of pictures.
God blessed us with a beautiful day and perfect for an outside garden party!
Cleaned up the food.
We went to pack up Lauren's apartment stuff then Zachary's dorm stuff in the Expedition and Joe's pickup.
Jacob and his girlfriend left for OSU FFA Inter-scholastics competitions in Zachary's car.
The other five of us went to eat with my parents at Jason's Deli.
Tyler went to spend the night in the dorm with Zachary.
Went to bed by midnight or so.  Exhausted, but feeling accomplished and relieved!
WOW!  Joe and I alone for a night???!  That rarely happens! Weird!

The plan:
The five of us were going to meet for breakfast. It took me a while to remember that Jacob would still be in Stillwater. I had planned to find a really neat and fun place to go. Lauren and Zachary were leaving for Italy and Joe's birthday was the next day. We would all be favorite thing :).
Well, Zachary wanted to run and needed to work his R.A. job checking out college Freshmen from 9-10, so he wasn't sure he would be able to eat. Lauren needed to be out of her apartment for checkout at 7:30 a.m.  She would be able to eat after that.

The reality:
A storm came through Oklahoma City causing a lot of downed power poles. It was pouring rain in the morning.  We know Zachary couldn't run, so it was going to be all five for breakfast!
Joe and I left the hotel to go load up the rest of Lauren's stuff and she was going to check out.
Mom and Dad started going back to Lubbock. There was a problem on the road near the OK State Fairgrounds and they were having traffic go to Exit 10. They were there, barely moving at all, if any...for over an hour! Turns out it was the downed power lines caused by the storm.
Lauren's roommate missed her checkout time and Lauren wasn't sure why.
Joe was helping her carry things out quickly before the checkout guy got there at 7:30. He carried a sack to the car that had a lot of stuff in it...including Lauren's car keys. He put the trunk lid down just a little, but didn't shut it. The trunk lid slammed shut immediately because of the wind.  So immediately Joe know the keys were locked in the car.
Lauren couldn't take anything else out of the apartment after her checkout (this included her pots and pans) because of the roommate not checking out yet (or something....I'm not sure about this part).
We pay for AAA and it's been a lifesaver for us, but because of the OKC storm, they weren't answering. We knew it would take a long time for them to come unlock a car.
Joe called a locksmith and waited.  He came pretty quick.
In the meantime the rest of us went to breakfast, not at one of the places I had searched for on TripAdvisor and gotten advice from by friends, but at Jimmy's Egg, which was close.  And it was good! We ordered and ate.
Joe got the car unlocked, got the pots and pans from the roommate when she got there (the storm at their hotel had knocked the power out and caused she and her family to oversleep).
Joe arrived at Jimmy's Egg....Zachary had to leave.
After we ate we all went back to Zachary's dorm.
We helped unload his dorm and cleaned it.
The college stuff was packed in my Expedition, Joe's pickup, Zachary's car, and Lauren's car.
We had a family prayer together (minus Jacob).
Zachary and Lauren left for Dallas.
We let Tyler decide what to do since he had us all to himself.
Tyler decided we would go to Golf Galaxy (formerly Golfsmith) where he and Joe putted and had a putting contest for an hour or more, Von Maur at Quail Springs mall plus other shopping (mostly needs since he's grown so much!), and then ate at Zio's.  We also went to Cavendars for Joe some socks because his feet were soaked from the rain. It rain mostly all day long!
Lauren and Zachary left their car at a cousin's house and called a cab.  The cab never came so they called for an Uber driver.  They made it to the airport.
About 4:00 p.m., Lauren realized she didn't have her wallet.  She had left it in the Uber car!!They were past security and almost ready to board the plane.  She called Uber and the driver met her outside DFW. Thankfully...thankfully....she was able to get back through security and onto the plan just in time!!!!
About Zio's:  Because the Bricktown Zio's is so pretty and because it was just as close as the other one, I suggested it.  When we got there we found out that it was the OKC schools' prom night, plus many Oklahoma Bombing Memorial Marathon runners were there....all waiting to eat.  It was going to be an hour and a half to two hour wait!  We decided to go to the other one.
On the way to the other Zio's Joe called. There was no wait at all.  We got seated immediately. Within 15 minutes there were lots of people coming in. When we left there, the wait was at least 30 minutes, maybe more.
The evening ended with Cold Stone Creamery and a trip to Walmart for pencils that Tyler could use for FFA Chorus during the next few days.
Went to bed late because I was watching Lauren and Zachary's plane on the app. I set an alarm for 1:30 a.m. so I could message them when they got there. They were to have a 3 hour layover.  I never went to sleep (reflux).
Jacob drove back home from Stillwater in pouring rain the whole time. He was so tired.
I missed the exact landing time. I was looking at other stuff on my phone. When I went to the app, though, it didn't say "landed".  I went to the airlines' app. It showed a plane in the MIDDLE OF THE OCEAN and said "scheduled".  I went back and forth between the two apps trying to see when it landed. Neither ever said landed.  I'm not a worrier, but the plane in the middle of the ocean saying scheduled really worried me a LOT. After about 10 minutes, I called the airlines hotline. I realized while listening to the first part of their stuff, that it was after midnight our time.  I went back to the airlines' app and realized that what I was searching had switched to April 30th instead of the 29th!! Ha ha!! I searched the 29th and saw what I wanted to see: LANDED! WHEW!!  :)
Waited a little bit and talked to Lauren and Zachary a while.
Went to sleep late, but slept through getting to say anything to them before they flew to Italy.

Joe was supposed to run in the Half Memorial Marathon, but decided he couldn't.  Instead he spoke about the Home at Carbondale Church of Christ in Tulsa. He left the hotel in OKC pretty early.
Tyler and I got up early for worship at class at Memorial Church of Christ.
As we arrived I found out Lauren and Zachary made it to Italy!
Tyler and I went back to the hotel, packed up, and went to eat.
At 2:00 p.m., I took Tyler to check in to the hotel to begin practicing with the Oklahoma FFA Chorus.
I checked into my hotel.
Joe got back from Tulsa.
We worshipped at Southern Ridge Church of Christ and got to visit with some friends we used to worship with at Elm & Hudson in Altus.  Joe was part of the studying due that the man studied with before becoming a Christian!
Joe and I ate (ALONE!) at Ted's Cafe. I did the birthday song and sombrero for his birthday as a surprise! He shouldn't have left the table to visit the restroom. It gave me time to let the waiter know!
Went to sleep pretty early because it was going to be an early Monday morning.
Responded to lots of people that had been commenting on all of the graduation stuff.
Talked to the Italy kids late and then during the night when it was their morning.
WOW! Another night alone. So, so weird!!!

Jacob got up and left the house at 4:30 a.m. for Kingfisher for the Regional Golf Tournament.
Joe and I left the hotel in OKC at 6:30 tournament, but in separate cars.  My GPS is way messed up on my phone, so it took me an alternative way for a while. It said roads that were in ALTUS, not OKC.  Thankfully I could read the map on the phone.
Jacob played two games of golf, so 36 holes. We were finished about 4:30.
Joe went back home.
Jacob and I went back to OKC.
The FFA Chapter had gotten to OKC in the afternoon. They were going to Main Event to play games/bowl. I was to take Jacob to meet them.
When we got to Main Event the FFA group wasn't there. They didn't come for about an hour. Jacob and I waited, but then just decided to bowl. I paid for a wrist band for $15, which gave unlimited bowling.  When they "buzzed" us saying a lane was ready, we went to get our shoes. The lady at the shoe desk said we should have paid for the shoes at the first desk, but since we didn't, she said she would just let it slide and gave them to us instead of us having to go back to the line.  (Savings:  $5 per pair). She also put in the two other people that we were going to get to bowl with us and said to tell them just to come get their shoes when they got there. (Total savings for all of us together: $20!!)
We bowled for the two girls until the 7th set, then they got there and we kept bowling for two hours!
I didn't want to eat late like I had the two nights before, so asked them if they wanted some appetizers to share.
We ordered onion rings and loaded fries.  I didn't want much at all, but those sounded good and they agreed.  When the food came, instead of fries, it was loaded tots. The waitress said she'd get it changed.
After 20 minutes I asked about our fries. The guy said they had a LOT of school groups come in and order. I told them I understood, just wanted to check.
After 10-15 minutes, the waitress brought the fries and apologized for the delay. She said she wasn't going to charge me for any of the food.
In a little while the manager (I guess) came and apologized and said the same. I told them I totally understood!  But, food? I won't complain!  Total saved:  $25?? I left a tip, still.
Jacob wanted me to take him to the FFA hotel instead of unloading his luggage to the bus.  They were going to leave at 8:45 p.m., but ended up not leaving until 10.
Since we had a lot of time with nothing to do, we were just walking around or sitting. Jacob had someone come up and give him a card that had unlimited game tokens for 8 hours! We all played Skeeball several times, then they did other games. They gave the card to someone else when the FFA group decided to leave. (Quite a bit saved!)
I dropped Jacob off at his hotel and went to mine...checked the car in with the valet.
Stayed up late and talked to the kids in Italy some.

The FFA Convention began at 9:00 Tuesday morning, so I got there about 8:30. It was across the street from the convention center, so very nice to be close.
Tyler was so much fun to watch in the FFA Chorus. They did great! He was so excited about it and texted about it often. So fun reading his messages!
After the morning session I walked around the career fair of the convention and walked with Jacob and Camry to our favorite downtown place to eat during the convention....Mom's Kitchen. Ended up eating with a friend that moved several years ago and walking back to the convention with her.
Tyler was done with practice and going to eat, but said he could visit with me for just a little while before he had to practice again. I told him I'd wait on him at his hotel lobby.
He finally said he was just leaving from running into Jacob and Camry.
I waited, but he never showed up. Finally he called.
He was by the convention center, but couldn't figure out where he was to get back to his hotel.
I asked where he was...what he saw...where the sun was...trying to direct him to the right place.
I waited and waited and called...NOTHING. I was standing out on the corner of his hotel block so hopefully I could see him or he'd see me.
He finally called and said he didn't have time to see me then...he had to go.
I asked if I could just say hi really quick as he walked the skybridge to the practice room. He allowed that :). It was quick! Ha!
After a quick trip to my hotel it was time for the evening session.
Our school secretary was given an honorary FFA degree award at the evening session, so that was exciting.
After the session ended, Tyler said he was hungry and since he thought he could go eat with Jacob and others, but they were going to eat near their hotel further away, he couldn't.
I was Tyler's last resort for an eating buddy, and since he hadn't seen me much in several days, I think he was excited (or maybe it was just me and he played along!).
We ate at Sonic at Bricktown. Tyler said he was going back to his hotel room and sleeping. He was so, so tired. Many others of the chorus group had gone to a concert.
We walked back to my hotel to get my car so I could drive him to his. I didn't want to walk back alone since it was dark and the FFA people weren't out then.
The valet, Zach, went to get the Expedition and was gone a long time. I told Tyler it was taking too long for the car to come.  Zach soon showed up with bad news. The car wouldn't start.
I told Zach I'd walk through the convention center and take Tyler to where he knew to go from there without getting lost, then get back to my hotel to decide what to do. He thought it was a dead battery so jumped it and let it run for 20 minutes.  I waited in the lobby.
Zach said not to worry about it, that he would charge it more and then I could go on to my room.
After about 30 minutes, there was a knock on my hotel door. Zach had bad news. After jumping it, running it a long time, and even driving it around, the car wouldn't start up again after he turned off the key.
I called Joe and told him what was going on.  He made plans to call someone the next day and to come to OKC in a bigger vehicle in case we had to unload the college stuff in case the Expedition had to stay a while. that left a night with a little uncertainty about the next day. I needed a vehicle to go to the State Capitol to hear the chorus. I wasn't sure yet when that was scheduled or how I'd get there.
Oh....and Tyler texted me at 11:30 asking if I was awake! I guess he got his second wind. Ha ha!

I found out early that the chorus wasn't leaving for the Capitol until 1:15, but it was an early morning at the convention. I got there and saved seats at 7:45 for the FFA group.
Another mother and I plus some of the FFA members went to a workshop.
Joe got to my hotel and began waiting on the mobile car mechanic to come. By that time they thought the problem was probably the carburetor. He wasn't sure how long he would wait.
I didn't have time to eat lunch, but wanted something.
I decided to stop by the hotel Starbucks and get something. It must have been noon because she was closing and so I didn't get anything to eat there. When I went to pay her, she GAVE it to me FREE!!  She said just take it, I guess because she had counted her register already.  (Savings: $5)
I borrowed a car from another mom friend.  I left at 1:15.
On the way to the Capitol Tyler called. He needed me to go get him a cheap pair of black pants because he had a white stain on his.
After some questioning, I got it out of him. He had spilled Super Glue on his pants trying to glue down the zipper pull on his FFA jacket!
I told him I wasn't buying a new pair of pants, but I had a Sharpie and he could color it and cover it!
He said to meet him after they finished singing at the Capitol.
Turns out I went out the way I came in and they didn't....SO, I didn't ever see him afterwards.
I got back about 3:45, just in time to run up to the room and do a few things and get to the convention center to help save seats...but Tyler wanted his pants colored so I ended up meeting him to color his stain really quick.  TALK ABOUT a LOT of WALKING! I wonder how many miles I put on Tuesday and Wednesday?!
My phone died during the Capitol trip, so I left it in the room to charge. That made it difficult to communicate, obviously.
I noticed an "Okie" t-shirt on the coffee table in my hotel room, but didn't have time to change to it and decided to wear it another time. I was also wondering why Joe brought it with him to OKC, thinking I had ordered it not remembering exactly how the one I had ordered recently looked.
Joe wasn't around when I left my hotel, so I figured that he had gone to the parking garage - that the mobile mechanic had arrived.
About 6:00 Joe got to the convention center. The mobile mechanic did fix the Expedition! It was only a cable and only $60!!! (Savings from not being carburetor. About $200!)
And a very, very cool thing: The man said he knew someone with our last name years our town (not knowing that's where Joe was from). Turns out he was at the Children's Home for two years in the 70's. Joe remembered him because his parents were houseparents at that time, as well!
The FFA Chorus sang lots of songs, we got to go see Tyler right after they sang and he got to stay with us after that.
I got to hear part of the keynote speaker after that. Joe and Tyler took his luggage to the car. The speaker was great.
Then Jacob got his FFA State Degree later in the evening and we took lots of pictures after that.
Joe and Tyler left for home.  Jacob and the rest of the FFA left for home.
I stayed in OKC for one more night. I originally thought I'd get a doctor's appointment for Thursday, but never did.

Woohoo!!! It's going home day!  I set my alarm at the hotel for 8:00 a.m.  I was going to go looking around at a few places and get to Altus at 4:00 for another appointment.
*I kept looking at the Okie shirt that had appeared on my coffee table. I sent a message to a lady I had ordered the shirt from. I knew I'd sent her my email address, but didn't remember sending my mailing address. And Joe wouldn't have brought it to the City, surely.
She didn't know what it was - hadn't send the invoices out yet. She asked for a picture of the shirt then said she didn't sell that shirt!! Hmmmmm....
I had texted Joe about it and he finally responded saying my 18 year old, Jacob, and his girlfriend, Camry had bought it for me! They gave it to Joe at the hotel during the afternoon to put in my hotel room!
Then I texted Jacob and told him about the funny story and told he and Camry thank you for the mysterious shirt! I'm sure they wondered why I never mentioned it the night before!
Oh, well...guess what I wore all day?! That new Okie shirt! It had leopard print on it - my fav!
I checked out of the hotel at 10:30 a.m., but just decided to head back home.
When I got to Lawton, I thought of a few things that I had to do, so stopped at a few stores.
I ended up staying at Lawton longer than I expected to, but then was tired and not breathing too great.
I decided to cancel the thing at 4:00 p.m.
I got home at 4:45 p.m.
When I got home I told the boys hi.  I went to my room and started to go get stuff out of the vehicle.  As I came back through the living room, I noticed Tyler had fallen asleep!!  At least by 5:00 p.m.! It's 10:30 and he's STILL asleep on the couch. (Update:  Jacob woke him up at 6:45 a.m. Friday morning!)
I had brought home Panda Express for all of the family. I just put it up from the oven warming. He's not gonna wake up! Ha ha! That late night Tuesday did him in, plus all of the other stuff that went on with their practice schedule and hours of work.
Joe, Jacob, and I were all enjoying the evening.
Jacob is working on his sermon for Sunday morning. He's preaching!!
I was thinking and even said to Joe how I kept waiting for something to go wrong today, but it hadn't.  Or so I thought.....
I don't know what made me think about it, but I happened to think that I hadn't even seen Jacob's graduation announcements!  I went to look at them.
I noticed there were a LOT of announcements in the box.  I mailed out 52 to go to the people directly, then bought about 50 to be mailed here.
Something was wrong.
I texted my sister and she hadn't gotten hers.
I looked up my order.  Yes...I was right. 52 and 50...different things.
I called Shutterfly.  After waiting 15 minutes, the guy looked it up.  Apparently I didn't check the mail directly tab so it was all addressed, but not mailed from there.
After looking in the boxes at every set of the announcements, I found that there were some of the envelopes with addresses!!!  So, here I was thinking everyone had them and now they are just now going out tomorrow! Joe and Jacob stuffed the envelopes while I added to my crazy week post!
Today wasn't as smooth as I thought......

But I'm home. I survived possibly the craziest week I've ever had! Mostly fun...some not.  Memories made, for sure.  And best of all, I get to sleep in my own bed tonight. I think that's a sign I'm getting old.  Surely not!

I request a good day....a calm day....a day to get things done around here....and a day to not get ready or watch the clock too much.  :). Thanks in advance.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Something To Think About

This is a great reminder for me concerning the things I do....repeat...and have a habit of doing.  Maybe it will make you think, as well.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Snowman Christmas Party 2016

The elementary Christmas party for 2016 was a snowman theme.  It was "snow" much fun!  Each elementary student, as well as several junior high and high school students, were able to get their picture taken with Frosty.  This junior high student was as tall as Frosty!
The students traveled around to different stations doing lots of fun activities.  
 This activity taught them how to make fake snow using shaving cream, baking soda, and glitter.  Adding vinegar to the mix made the snow erupt!
 They played snow games.....throwing snowballs into buckets for points, relays creating snowmen with toilet paper, and other snow themed games.
 They made a snowman ornament.
 These are easily done with paint stir sticks, but this year we bought the little kits with everything included from Oriental Trading.
They heard snowman stories in the reading center.
And decorated their own cookie for their party.
 When the students ate their decorated cookie at lunch, they drank snow punch.  Here's the link for the punch.  It's so good!
 Tablecloths and paper sacks with tissue decorated the cafeteria for party time.
 The punch was served from the adorable snowman punchbowl I bought several years ago.

It was a great party and the students had a lot of fun!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Christmas 2016

I really thought this had already been published, but see that it hasn't.  Even though it's really late, I want to publish it as part of my family's online scrapbook - for the memories to be saved for myself and the children to read later on if they want to.

On the first Friday of Christmas Break, we went to Oklahoma City. Our daughter was traveling with the college basketball team to broadcast, so couldn't be with us, but our oldest son met us after his classes, then began his Christmas Break by coming back home with us.  We spent time at Bricktown, which was beautiful all lit up.

We ate at Legacy Grill, formerly "KD's". It had the same menu as KD's, so was still delicious.

We played mini-golf at the new-to-us "Brickopolois".  That is such a fun addition to Bricktown! The weather was perfect!  I lost, unfortunately, but not unexpectedly. :)

After Christmas our family went to the Dallas/Ft. Worth area for a quick trip. Reading and seeing the history of this area was very interesting.

We toured downtown Ft. Worth, stopping for a Starbucks treat.

We toured the stock yards, which was really interesting.

We went to the "Ice" carvings at the Gaylord Texan.  The theme this year was "Santa Claus is Coming to Town". It was beautiful, as usual!

It was cold, too! VERY cold!

The work these ice carvers do is just amazing!

We slid down the ice slide.

And toured the Gaylord Atrium.  So pretty.

Like everything in Texas, the Christmas decor was bigger than life size.  It was huge!

Special memories of time with family this Christmas of 2016.  It will most likely be the last Christmas we will be together for this amount of time, just because our oldest will be working full-time next year.  It was bittersweet.  So thankful for these special times together and for the photos we have to remember them.

Monday, March 13, 2017


This is such a great article.  I haven't asked permission to post it, so am just sharing the link that goes directly to this man's blog.  Please take the time to read it.  Click HERE.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

What Is Most Important?

What is most important in your life? If you asked your spouse, your children, your friends what is most important to you, what would they say? Is what you think you portray as most important shown in the way you live and conduct your life?

The choices you make, each and every day, show your family, your friends, your neighbors, but even more importantly, GOD, what is most important to you. In the end, eternal life with GOD in Heaven is all that will matter. The choices you make now determine where you will spend eternity. Choices you make now will help determine where your children, grandchildren, and future generations spend their eternity.

I'll admit that sometimes I don't make wise choices. I have a hard time saying "no", so I'm too busy much of the time, and busyness oftentimes gets in the way of doing what is best.  Good things aren't always the best things.  I'm working on that. Maybe you are, too.

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” Matthew 7:24-27

Wednesday, February 1, 2017


"What you allow, you encourage." ~Michael Josephson

Whether you're raising children, educating children, or trying to make a positive difference in yourself or your workplace, you want to set an example. When we turn a blind eye to the little things that are on the verge of right/wrong, we allow that behavior to keep happening. "Oh, they're just a kid...and kids will be kids..", "Oh that's just that person's personality, they didn't really mean it...," "Oh, they're just having a bad day...". And "Boys will be boys?" No way! Not if parents teach their boys to become men! And girls can be ladies and it's not a bad thing! God made each gender to be unique, special, and able to do things and feel things and accomplish things that the other gender wasn't made by Him to do. We were each uniquely made by God for a purpose - His purpose.

When we allow things that are wrong, we become part of the problem and not the solution.

Take time to lovingly correct your children, your students...stand up for yourself (in kindness) when someone offends you. But be KIND. Be LOVING. Be understanding, but teach and instruct and don't neglect to do so.

If no one tells them something is wrong, how will they ever know?

Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it. 
Proverbs 22:6

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Parent Eye

Sometimes people get "parent eyes" or "grandparent eyes". This is when someone else's child or grandchild does something it's wrong, but if my own child or grandchild does it, it's okay. This can be something seemingly simple, but it can be something glaringly big. It can be something innocent, but it can be something sinful. It can be something against God's word, yet if it's MY child or grandchild, my "parent eyes" or "grandparent eyes" easily overlooks it because I don't want to believe that what my child or grandchild is doing is wrong.

Let's just look at some of the things that can cause "parent eyes" or "grandparent eyes":

#1: In sports, MY child walks with the ball. "Parent eyes" or "grandparent eyes" yell, "He/she did not walk!" Everyone else clearly say that he/she did walk, yet the parent can't believe it; however if someone else's child walks you can hear murmuring, "That's the third time he/she has walked!" See the problem? Yes. And the child didn't offend God. It's an innocent mistake. No big deal, really. The parent and grandparent could be offending Him, though, just by their attitude.

#2: In life, YOUR child is living with their boyfriend/girlfriend. "Parent eyes" or "grandparent eyes" will see YOUR child and think (rightfully so), "That is wrong! (1 Corinthians 6:9-10, 18...Ephesians 5:5) Sexual relations outside of marriage is sinful in God's eyes! It's listed with murder in the Bible! (Revelation 21:8)" And it is! Yet a few years down the road and those same parents and grandparents will have a child that moves in with their boyfriend/girlfriend and seem to not have a problem with it. Maybe they do deep down, and of course they wouldn't shout their disdain to the world or on social media (hopefully), but seemingly act as if it's okay. Nothing is said, even to close friends who are around them all of the time. And oftentimes the child/grandchild is posting on social media what is blatantly against God's Word, be it sexual immorality, drunkenness, mocking God or Jesus, etc. They're not only doing it, but flaunting it in the eyes of friends and family and strangers.

The point is that we all do sin and do wrong, of course, but as parents and grandparents, we must learn to see what is real. We can't excuse things in our lives and the lives of our children/grandchildren, yet condemn those around us who do the very same thing. If it's wrong, it's wrong.

Christian's are under different guidelines than those in the world in regards to sin. If a lost person does wrong, they are no more lost than they were before. They are separated from God because of sin. When a faithful Christian does wrong, it's sin, but the blood of Jesus will continue to cleanse us and make us spotless again when we confess our sins and ask God to forgive them. He is a graceful and merciful Heavenly Father and aren't we thankful that He is?!

If we are Christians we have an obligation and commandment with instructions to follow when someone is wrong, as in the example of sexual immorality given above. We find this in 1 Corinthians 5:9-13, where Paul says:

"I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world (Note from Parent's After God's Own Heart: This was written to Christians and for Christians, not for this 'of the world' who are not Christians), or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”"

That is God's instruction, whether we're looking through "parent eyes" and "grandparent eyes" or not. Our eyes can change. We can put on dark shades or rose colored glasses that distort what is true and right. God's Word never, ever changes. He is the same. The Bible is the same. And wrong is wrong, no matter what.

What eyes are you looking through today? Are they seeing what's real? Are they seeing what is right? Or are they seeing through "parent eyes" or "grandparent eyes"?

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Take Time For What Matters Most

Many years ago I had a friend who was always cleaning her house. If we talked on the phone, she couldn't talk long because she had to clean. If we were volunteering for something at our children's school, she couldn't help long because she had to clean. I would tease and say her house must have been the cleanest house in town! I loved that sweet friend and the times we shared.

One day that sweet friend found out she had cancer. From then on, any phone call we had revolved around spiritual matters, family matters, important matters....not about cleaning the house. That friend passed away after a hard-fought battle of treatments that eventually didn't work. She would say how that clean house she always kept didn't matter any more and that her family and God was was mattered. Oh, I miss that sweet friend! But I remember her attitude. It was always positive.

As I was washing dishes a few days ago (that had been on the counter and in the sink for 24 hours), I was thinking about how for many, that would be horrible. To have dishes sit overnight wouldn't ever happen. I'll admit that it happens quite often in our home. For the most part I wash them in the morning after the younger two leave for school, but sometimes do wash them at night.

I could have washed those dishes during the previous afternoon and missed out on time with my husband's family at our Christmas get-together. I could have washed all of those dishes late that night instead of playing dominos with my family.  I could have gotten up earlier on the last "sleep later" day and washed them. I could have washed them that next morning instead of watching the Rose Parade with a few of my children. But I didn't. I waited until we ate our late lunch and cleaned it all up then.

Here's the deal....dishes will always be there to wash. These children, these family times, the family time we had with extended family members yesterday will not always be there. I've come to realize that there are work-focused people and people-focused people. There's a time to work - absolutely! But when it comes to people, think about the fact that special times won't always be there. This moment when our two college kids and two younger ones are home will not be here much longer. In fact, this was probably the very last one since our daughter will graduate from college in May.

Will that pile of dishes matter to me when I think back on memories of this recent break or will the people who I spent it with matter? It's an easy answer. The dishes can wait a while. People can't. Spend time on what matters....on WHO matters. Be available for people.

When I think of Jesus, he worked. He served. But he took the time to love people. He should be our example in all things.
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