Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Is This For REALS?? :)

A friend of my hubby sent this to him a few days ago, and we love it! :) Words can't express - you just have to experience it for go ahead...

My favorite part?


Thursday, September 18, 2008

I'm Still Here....I've Just Been....

1. Changing LOTS of poopy diapers - J-Boy is a very healthy eater - and pooper!! :) I'm glad his system works so well, but I am very busy keeping his pants clean.
2. Feeding Children - If I'm not feeding my girlies breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snacks, I am feeding J-Boy a bottle or baby food. I have a new appreciation for not only what my own Mom did over the years, but also those Mommies who have even more mouths to feed at one time than I do. Go Moms!
3. Getting Back Outside - Slowly, but surely, the weather is changing here. That means we've started to get back outside in the mornings to let the girlies ride their tricyles (and K-Bug has a new/used bicylce with training wheels) and going for walks in the evenings after dinner. J-Boy LOVES to be outside in his stroller - it really helps when he is being fussy in the evenings. In a few weeks, the girlies, J-Boy and I will all start to go the park on at least a weekly basis to spend some extended time outdoors with friends. I am SOO thankful! I feel like we all deserve a T-shirt or other memento that says "We survived ANOTHER Phoenix summer!"
4. Holding/Rocking A Teething Baby - J-Boy's FIRST tooth finally popped thru the gum on the bottom, and he doesn't seem to be too thrilled about it! He's got another on the way, and the poor kiddo has been uncomfortable and a little a fussy. I do have some great natural teething tablets (thanks Coral!)as well as cold teething rings...they do help some. :) In the meantime, we hope for the teethies to come quickly...
5. Fighting Headaches & Dealing with Allergies....The headaches have been mine. I've had a few in the last week or so. They are a combination of sinus pain and migraine throbbing. YUCK!! The allergies I've had to deal with haven't been my own - my dear hubbies allergies have flared on him in the last few weeks as well - poor guy!!! He's been absolutley miserable - sneezing until his eyes are puffy and his nose is swollen. He hasn't really had to deal with serious allergies for at least a few years, so this spell of ickies caught him totally off-guard.
6. Starting the girlies in a dance/gmynastics class - My generous mom-in-law gave us a gift to help the girlies get started in a dance/gymnastics class that meets once a week. At this point, it's only four weeks long. After that time, we should be able to determine if we will continue with this combined gym and dance class or just switch to gymnastics. We had our first class this week, and both K-Bug and Lorelin had a LOT of fun! I took the camera, but the pictures were really lousy...Sorry :(
7. Playing with my parent's new puppy... TODAY my parents picked up their new puppy - a seven week old female chocolate labrador that they named Moxy (it means "smart") She is a TOTAL cutie, and the girls just LOVED playing with her....and she loved playing with them. They wore each other out - my girlies are fast asleep, and I know that Moxy is probably sleeping away on her new special doggie pillow. It will be lots of fun for the girls (and the rest of us) to watch this puppy grow - and my parents are the ones who get to feed and clean up after it! We all win!
8. Signing Up For The Gym...yup, I did it. I signed up for a gym that will open in just a few weeks. It's called Fitness Works. For $25 a month, I get access to the gym as well as free reign to choose from over 80 different aerobics classes. I haven't really told a lot of people about this, because I know that the proof is when I start going to the gym, but I am READY!!!
9. Sleeping & Reading.... I do try to get some sleep at night, although I continue to be a night owl, and I've been trying to keep up with my Bible reading, as well as a few other books. I've also been trying to pray each night with my dear hubby....

Well, that's a little bit of what's going on for us Smiths....I pray that all is going well with YOU!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Look Ma - No Hands!!

I haven't gotten around to writing J-Boy's six month update yet, but here is our BIG boy proudly showing off his newest accomplishment! SITTING UP!!
He's been sitting up for a few weeks now, but he's always needed his hands propped in front of him, and if he tried to turn his head or shift his weight, he'd fall over like a tiny sack of taters'. :)
But not anymore.....

He's even gotten to the point that he can "correct" himself when he gets off-balance. He can also lean over to grab things and then pull himself back up.
Sometimes he still falls....

Then he smiles a cute smile for the camera about 20 seconds before he starts scooting around on the floor like a mad-man on a mission. A crawling mission that is! This boy is bound and determined to go places - I wouldn't be surprised if he starts crawling very soon. Then it's watch out world - and Mommy too!
When he's not sitting around looking cute, J-Boy can be found in his exer-saucer twirling, jumping, and chewing away. :)

Go, big boy, go!!!
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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Our Trip - Unpacked

I was reading back over my posts about our trip. They are a snapshot of what happened - a verbal scrapbook, with a few pictures put in. However, I didn't really elaborate on many thoughts or feelings about the trip.So, in a what I hope to be a shorter post, I'll share a little of my true heart.

Here is what I remember about -

THE PAST: When we went to Norman to visit in 2007, my dear hubby and I both fell in love with this charming town. The college-feel, the friendly people, the weather (yes, even the tornadoes!), and the land.
Both my hubby and I can recall a very vivid moment that we had inside the Oklahoma City airport from that first visit. We were sitting and reflecting on that first visit getting ready to fly back to Phoenix. We both looked out over the expanse of land and sky there in the giant windows of the airport, and together prayed that God would show us whether or not He wanted us to move to Norman. We came home from that first trip, and through MUCH prayer, believed that God told us "Not yet". We both believed that He wanted us to accept the offer to help our friends as they started a new church plant. So, we said, "Not now" to Norman, and "Yes" to God and our friends.
As it turns out, my sis and her dear hubby decided to move away from Norman. I decided that God must have changed His answer to a "No", and in my heart silently bid a farewell to Oklahoma.

Here is what I know about -

THE PRESENT: Fast foward to today. The church plant will celebrate the anniversary of our first service in just two short weeks. My dear hubby has led worship for this great little church, and I have grown incredible amounts in my own faith as it relates to obedience to Christ. My parents have been "waiting" around the Phoenix area, hoping that we might want to move with them....somwhere close to them so that they can continue to have their special, close relationships with their grandkids. My parents have been looking at the East Texas area, most espcially because my Meemaw (and other family) are there - and my Meemaw may need assistance as she gets older. However, my dear hubby had never been to East Texas, and I hadn't been in at least ten years. So, we planned a trip that would double as a vacation and scouting mission to see if East Texas is a place we'd consider moving to. The plane tickets were bought, and we sat down with a map of Texas. However, as we kept talking and praying, God seemed to bring Norman back to our minds and hearts. "That's silly.." we told ourselves. However, again and again both my hubby and myself felt it laid on our hearts that we were to return there.
Many a night we prayed, "Lord, what in the world are we supposed to do once we get there? Drive around? Jump up and down? Say 'Hey-howdy-hey' to Joe Brown?" (okay, so maybe our prayers didn't all rhyme quite like that... :)
So one night we just said, "Yes". And even though we still had NO idea what to do when we got to Norman, we both had immediate peace that we were being obedient.
We worked Norman into the plan, called my sis and her hubby to help us find a place to stay, and mapped out our route from Dallas on up to Oklahoma.
If you want to read (or re-read about) what we actually did there in Oklahoma - head back to Day 1 or Day 2 of the trip. Our time in Okalahoma was very God-centered. We both wanted to stay, although we knew that we needed to head to our visits in Texas. And driving dwon from Oklahoma to Texas, both my hubby and I believed that God just might be up to something in Norman, Oklahoma that involved us.We returned from the trip, and sat down one evening for a candid conversation with my parents. They surprised ME by saying that they still thought that Norman was a wonderful place, and they were still thinking of moving there themselves.

What I am praying about -

So where does that leave us? I don't like saying this, but I still don't altogther know. It hasn't been easy to think about leaving Phoenix. In many ways I am very comfortable here - I have the best friends of my life, and my hubby's family are all around. The housing market stinks in Phoenix right now, and selling our house (not to mention making any kind of profit) seems rather unlikely. My sis and her hubby are not wanting to make a return to Norman for many reasons, and although she is supportive of whatever we decide, she's dissapointed (as am I) that we might not be a close together in miles as we would have wanted (although I AM praying about Austin, just like I said I would!)
Most of my hubby's family are upset of the thought of us leaving, and many of my friends can't understand anyone's draw to a place that regularly hosts tornadoes.

I can only tell you this - it would be by God, for God, and about God if we moved.

My job is to commit myself into God's hands, and to draw near to Him.

We are activley asking God about what's next for the Smiths, and praying about a possible move within the next year.

God knows what the future holds.

So, for now, that's enough for me.

Our Trip - Part 3, Days 3 &4

I'm just now finishing the write-up about our Texas/Oklahoma trip…if you stuck with me and made it this far in my rather lengthy posts then you are either my true friend, you like words as much as I do, or you’re feeling obligated to read because you’re related to me. ;)

Anyway, I’ll roll together days three and four. We spent most of Saturday visiting with my Meemaw.Here she is sititng on her beautiful patio with her "porch dress", as she called it, and her doggie Tinkerbell.

We visited a little in the morning and then went out driving.We ended up stopping at this tourist attraction that was the home of the WORLD’S LARGEST CEDAR ROCKING CHAIR. No kidding…they have the Guiness World Record plaque to prove it. It IS a big chair….I think it’s 25 feet high.

Here I am, sitting in a smaller, but still LARGE version of the same chair. I felt like such a little kid sitting in this chair.

There was a beautiful furniture store/gift shop, a BBQ restaurant, and a real working blacksmith on the property.

The furniture was made of cedar, of course, and was very beautiful. The first thing you see inside the store is this large handcrafted table that costs oh…only $10,000.

We didn’t even breathe on that table…..

My Meemaw ended up buying J-Boy a cute cowboy Teddy bear and she bought the girlies some pink fuzzy slippers that look like cowboy boots…they are SO super cute! We ate at the Smokehouse BBQ – it was out of this world good!

We went back to my Meemaw’s house and rested some before packing our bags up and saying our Goodbyes to her.

The most confusing drive of the entire trip was the one from my Meemaw’s house back to the rental car facility at the airport. We had Google Maps version of the step-by-step directions, and I am so thankful that they were all accurate! The airport in Dallas is super spread out and getting to the airport was a maze of exits and turn-offs.

We dropped off our rental car and my Uncle Petey (not really my uncle, but my godfather) came and picked us up. Ahhh!!! We could relax and let someone else take the wheel!

Once back at my godparents BEAUTIFUL home (they just completely remodeled the inside of their home and it is stunning!), we unloaded our suitcases and enjoyed a short rain-storm that blew cool winds and poured buckets of water on their already green backyard.

My Godparents spoiled us rotten – they took us to the most AMAZING Mexican food restaurant for dinner. They make homemade guacamole to your specifications right at your table…, huh?

After dinner, we went back to their house, sat down and has us a good ol’ fashioned visit. We talked for the next few hours about everything under the sun – our children, our trip, what God was doing in our lives, good books, etc.

It was such a blessed time – one that, in reflection, really blessed my hubby and I immensely. It’s always good to have someone who’s gone before you speak truth and perspective into your current circumstances.

We slept well, and awoke the next morning to attend church. The pastor at their church has been preaching since I was a child, and it was so wonderful to hear him preach that morning.

After church, we went out for some pizza,where we asked a teen girl outside to snap our picture.

Then we were on to the airport. We made it to our gate with LOTS of time, and crowded into our seats with a full flight.

The ride back to Phoenix was a bit bumpy, and my hubby had a very painful stuffed eardrum, but we did make it safely, for which we are thankful. :0 As we disembarked from the plane, I turned to my hubby and told him how much I had enjoyed our time together.

With that, we turned the corner out of security, and into the waiting arms of my parents and children, who had come to greet us at the airport.

There were lots of big hugs and smiles, and lots of exclamations from K-Bug saying, “You came back! MY Mommy is back! MY Daddy is back!”

It was good to be with our children again.
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