I am so grateful for godly parents. I really have such amazing parents. My dad has such a great sense of humor...I like to think I get my sense of humor from him (along with my Groucho Marx eyebrows). He is one of the hardest working people I know...I think he only has two speeds he runs on...turbo and stop. If he isn't working hard, then you'll find him snoozing on the couch. :) He is such a great Grandpa, too. He calls Jonathan every day after school to see how his day went. He spoils him rotten, too. I love my dad so much! I think I'll always be Daddy's girl. Now my mom is so adorable...I just love her to bits! She is smart and hard-working. Everyone depends on her. She is a rock. She is also such a prayer warrior. I remember when I lived at home, seeing my mom on her knees first thing every morning. Her love for God shines from her face. Now, my dad's sense of humor comes in handy with my mom. It's like having an instant laugh track. She just th…
Today, I want to say how thankful I am for my freedom. I am thankful for those who are serving our country currently and those who have served in the past. Your sacrifice and service enables me to live the life I live today. THANK YOU!!!! But, there is one group I am really grateful for...the military wives. Their sacrifice often goes unnoticed. Read this letter below. It was passed on to me from a military wife. What it says is so true.
Dear Military Wife, I am an American woman that has no idea what is going on in the military other than what I hear on the news. I have never had to let go of someone so that they could go fight for people that they didn't know, people that sometimes do not appreciate or understand what they are fighting for. I have never had a sleepless night of worry because of a report that another bomb has exploded and I still haven't heard from my husband. I have never had to wait for months on end to hold the one that I loved so. I have never had t…
When I look back at some of this pics over the years, I can only say how grateful I am that God gave J to us when He did. He is such evidence of God's best for our lives. My mama heart is overwhelmed and my eyes are brimming with tears of gratefulness. From the day you were born, to first teeth and first Thanksgivings, to first birthdays, to the first time pitching with Daddy's old glove, and to first trophies... to the many, many more memories we are so blessed to have. My heart is overwhelmed with gratefulness for my son with the loving heart, the adorable belly laugh, the competitive spirit, the best hugs and this amazing amount of potential. I cannot wait to see what God has in store for J. It has been eight wonderful years...sure there have been trials. And yes, there was that time you put stickers all over the closet door, cut your brand new shirt at preschool, broke one of my favorite figurines, or that day when you came home from school crying because of the bullies... …
So I have been pretty sick the past couple of days and haven't had the energy to blog. So here is the next thing I am thankful for....
I am grateful to have such a wonderful husband. He has been such a great help these past couple of days...taking care of J, cleaning the house (because he knows I can't stand it to be dirty!), and just being there for me.
This coming year will be our 10th anniversary. We have definitely had our ups and downs, but God is faithful. I am so blessed to have a man like Tim in my life. Here are some of the things I love most about him (in no particular order):
His positive outlook The way he laughs at himself when he makes a clever remark His passion for people His determination to be a good husband and provider How loud he sings at church The way he loves to help people...any time, any day How he is still a kid at heart How he desires so greatly to be used of God
I could go on and on and on...but I am truly thankful for Tim.
I love the old movie Holiday Inn...where Bing Crosby sings the song with the above title. Anyway, I do have so much to be thankful for, so I am going to spend a little time this month writing some of those things down.
First and foremost, I am thankful for my Lord Jesus who gave His live for me. I am grateful for His word and how he speaks to me through it. I am grateful that I am His child...and nothing can ever take that away.
Before you get on to me for using the title of a one hit wonder Billy Ray Cyrus song, it really does sum up how I am feeling today.
Do you ever just have those days where you just don't know what to do as a parent? Well, today was one of them for me.
Poor J had a rough day at school. His class was supposed to work on a diorama of Ramona Quimby, Age 8. Now if you know J, you know that art is not his gift, but we always encourage him to do his best to use the creativity that God has given him. But somewhere along the line, this "attitude" comes out when it comes to doing art. Anyway, the diorama had to come home with him to work on this weekend. This was just the beginning.
After several near meltdowns, we hit the final straw...cleaning up the playroom. A simple task, but not so simple tonight. The "attitude" came back for a visit.
Somedays, it seems like no matter what you do or say as a mom, you just can't get through. By the end of our conversation,…
This weekend, I am going to be going back to Springfield to visit my dear friend Katie who will be getting married soon. I am looking forward to girl time...hanging out, laughing until we are sick, and then laughing some more (not to mention mass quantities of Cheddar's spinach dip).
I also get to spend time with my dear friend Paula. It has been way too long!
I am looking forward to going, but I am wondering how I am going to feel. I haven't been back to Springfield in over two years. I miss so many things there still...and I miss the people even more. I think this will be a bittersweet time.
Anyway, T and J are going to have guys night while I am gone. Pizza, movies, camping out in the living room. J likes guys night because he can burp all he wants. Ahh, the little things in life. :)
You need to hop on over to her site to read the story of Heath and Cassie. Heath started attending our military small group a couple of months ago, and he surprised us two weeks ago by telling us he was getting married...that coming Friday.
You see, Heath is in the Army and got warning orders that he would be deployed again within the next year. So, rather than waiting for the wedding they were planning next year, Heath and Cassie moved their wedding up.
Enter Jenny Erdman...a sweet friend from church who has a photography business on the side. I had asked Heath if they had a photographer, and he said no. So, I asked Jenny if she was willing to come to the small ceremony on the mountain and take some photos. She selflessly gave of her time and took some lovely photos.
Our summer has been really fun. While we really didn't take a vacation, we have made lots of weekend trips to visit family as you have seen by the previous posts.
Here are just a few more pictures from our last weekend adventure...King's Dominion. We decided to take J because this is the last year that he could ride the kid rides. Aside from Silver Dollar City, he really hasn't been to an amusement park. So we decided to make some memories. :)
Time: 45 minutes (for 1 6-cookie batch), plus at least 24 hours’ chilling
2 cups minus 2 tablespoons (8 1/2 ounces) cake flour 1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt 2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter 1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar 2 large eggs 2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract 1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate disks or fèves, at least 60 percent cacao content, available at Whole Foods Sea salt.
1. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside.
2. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Dr…
When we lived in Springfield, MO, I worked at a wonderful church...Second Baptist Church. The pastor is Pastor John Marshall...a great pastor and friend. Our apartment where we lived was across the hall from his dear mother-in-law, who we loved dearly.
Anyway, Pastor and Ruth Marshall's daughter, Rebekah, has a wonderful blog, yeebird, that you absolutely must check out. She is so creative! She posts photos of her craft projects (which are AMAZING!) and lovely photos of her family and friends. It really is a great blog!
This week, Rebekah is celebrating her 100th post with a giveaway of some of her favorite things (and mine, too!). Click here to check it out!
Jonathan and I got back from our visit to PA Tuesday night. Wednesday we did laundry and Thursday we packed our suitcases again. Friday after Tim got done with work, we headed to Atlanta to visit the in-laws. But it wasn't just a social visit...my father-in-law got saved three weeks ago and got baptized Sunday night. Of course we had to be there for that! God is so good!!!
So that is the reason for my delay in posting pics...so here are some from our trip to Hershey, PA.
One, we get great cashback rewards...and every few months there is a new category where we can get additional cash back.
Two, they are really great about abnormal charges. If there is something that doesn't seem right, they call us to verify. I love that!
Three, ShopDiscover. Not only do I get my cash back for using my card, I can shop through ShopDiscover and get even more rewards. For example, we got an extra 5% cash back when we bought my hubby's new computer online from the Apple Store through shop Discover. I love it!
We usually "save" our cashback bonus to use on something special we both agree on. Sometimes we use it to pay our account, sometimes we get restaurant certificates, etc... There are a ton of options.
Well, it has been nine years this very moment since I married my best friend and the love of my life. And I am truly grateful for the journey. Sure there have been ups and downs, but that is what makes us appreciate the mountaintops even more. God has truly blessed me in giving me a good husband who loves me and cares for me (and even does laundry!).
Tim, I love you and I hope we have many, many more anniversaries to come.
I couldn't sleep Friday night, so I woke up at 4 AM. I was trying to decide what to do with the day, and then I decided to take the fam to Norfolk. Tim has been wanting to go there for a while, so I decided that there was no better time than the present...plus our ninth anniversary is Tuesday so it was a good excuse.
We had a great time touring the base and seeing the ships. We also went downtown to the Navy museum and toured the USS Wisconsin.
J got to swim at the hotel, so he was happy. He also got to sleep on a "magic bed" (sofa bed) so he was pretty happy!
We went to church at TRBC via internet. Then we went to VA beach where the boys had a great time playing in the waves until J consumed too much salt water.
We then went to Fort Story and saw the Cape Henry Lighthouses. We climbed up to the top of Old Cape Henry Light. Let's just say that after climbing the stairs to the Eiffel Tower, this was a piece of cake!
It was nice to get away together...so often it see…
Life is busy, and there are some things that just have to be lower on the priority list. For me, blogging is one of those things. Between being a wife and mommy, working full time plus other ministries I am involved in, I end up with little time to blog.
I have found myself going back and forth between wanting more and extreme gratefulness. It is summer...people are going on vacations, stay-at-home mommies are with their children all of the time, etc... And I admit, I am struggling with envy. I wish I didn't have to work, but I choose to work so my son can go to a Christian school...and a great one at that.
But on the other hand, I have been asking God to help me battle envy, and I find myself filled with extreme gratefulness. I have a soft bed to sleep on, a roof over my head, food, clothing, family, health. I am a spoiled American Christian. We have so much, and sometimes we forget that because we are too busy chasing after the newest gadget or buying the perfect house...…
I don't know what it is about the rain. I used to hate when it rained. Until we moved here to Virginia, I really disliked rain. Now I seem to look forward to a good rain storm. I wonder what made me change how I feel about the rain. I wonder what that means about me.
Well, I am off to enjoy the rain. Happy Memorial Day!
I have been so awful about blogging lately...and it is pretty low on my priority list, I must say.
Things here have been fine, but busy. Jonathan just finished up baseball last week and has started taking swimming lessons. Only two more weeks of school for him. He also was in a kid's musical at church last week. He did a great job.
Tim finished up one seminary class and is starting another. Needless to say, his head in a book these day.
As for me, I just try to keep up with my family and make things run smoother. We had a huge conference at church, and I ended up selling books for Mark DeYmaz, Francis Chan, Billy Hornsby and Kerry Shook. And for the big news, I did save $25 using coupons while I grocery shopped yesterday. :) Pretty sad that is the highlight of my week.
So I was reading the news headlines, and this story about a new Vikings draftee caught my attention...
From Yahoo Sports:
"New Vikings Signee Retains His Loyalty to Target By MJD
A lot of guys, when they sign an NFL contract, might go out and buy something expensive, have a huge party, buy some jewelry, or maybe get a tattoo.
But if Nick Urban, former standout lineman at Winona State and brand new Minnesota Viking, is going to get a tattoo, it's going to be a red bullseye underneath the words, "Expect More. Pay Less."
Urban works (or worked) at Target, and you know what he did as soon as he found out the Vikings were giving him a contract? He put on the red shirt and worked his scheduled shift at Target.
From Access Vikings, via the watchful eye of Sportress of Blogitude: “They were nice enough to take me on, knowing my situation and I owed them a lot,” Urban said of his bosses at Target, who gave him flexible, part-time hours so he could train for his shot at the NFL. “My…
I have been feeling a little "beat up" by the Word lately...my selfish heart is definitely getting pounded. Sometimes I feel like there isn't any more of me left to give...and I forget to let Christ take control.
He has been stretching me and teaching me and guiding me in paths that I never dreamed I would take, but I am interested to see where the journey leads.
So when I feel like I am not enough (which I am not), I need to truly depend on Christ and allow Him to be enough.
If you are reading this, please pray for me this moment. That I will continue to allow God to lead and not make plans that are not His will. If you know me, you know that is my struggle...I like to have everything planned out and all of my ducks in a row.
I can still plan...I just can't forget to check in with the Master Planner first!
I found this online, but the author is unknown....
Dear Military Wife,
I am an American woman that has no idea what is going on in the military other than what I hear on the news.
I have never had to let go of someone so that they could go fight for people that they didn't know, people that sometimes do not appreciate or understand what they are fighting for. I have never had a sleepless night of worry because of a report that another bomb has exploded and I still haven't heard from my husband. I have never had to wait for months on end to hold the one that I loved so.
I have never had to tell my children that daddy wasn't coming home tonight because he was so far away fighting for something that they aren't yet old enough to understand. I have never had to hold my head high and suppress the tears as I hear that it will be at least another six months of separation before my loved one gets to come home.
I have never had to deal with a holiday away from the one that I th…
It is hard to believe that you are 8 years old today. It seems like I cannot even remember our life without you. You have brought us so much joy.
I know that you are getting older every day, and every day brings more changes; but I hope and pray that you keep the sweet, kind spirit you have as well as your joy in life. You are so very special...one of a kind. God has great plans for you, my son. Always keep your eyes and heart focused on Him. You will never be alone with Christ by your side.
My husband Tim has such a burden for the military. He is currently in seminary at Liberty, pursuing a M.Div in chaplaincy so he can be a Navy chaplain. This burden led him to start the MANA Military Ministry at Thomas Road.
At first, we thought that the ministry might reach out to the ROTC guys or the Nat. Guard guys at the local armory, as well as chaplain candidates at the seminary. Turns out that God has other plans so far.
The military wives.
This group of courageous women, most with young children, are here in Lynchburg while their husbands are in boot camp or getting ready to be deployed. Such a void is left behind when their husbands leave. Who will mow the grass? Who will keep me safe at night? Will I ever have a moment to myself again? How do I really know what to expect? These questions, along with many others, are difficult questions that the military wife has to ask herself.
So now, we are faced with how we can help them. What are their needs that we as a church can m…
So, I’m sitting at home the other day watching a program about the origins of mathematics. I know you are thinking to yourself “How boring is this guy’s life that he watches a show like that?” but hang in there with me. It was quite interesting.
I learned that the numbers we use today originated in India. This culture was the first to invent an individual symbol to represent each of the numbers 1-9. This made commerce, measuring, counting, agriculture, everything much easier to manage. Yet while they had symbols that represented 1-9 no culture had yet invented the concept of 0 (zero).
Eventually, after time, the Indian people came to realize the power of zero, the concept of nothing. They came up with the symbol for it that we still use today, 0. Immediately, their whole mathematical system changed. It became infinitely more powerful and efficient. Other cultures and nations caught on to the concept of zero and it dr…
J's birthday is coming up soon, and we are trying to get his party plans all in order. Now if you know me, I like to have every little detail planned out way ahead of time, but this time, I just can't seem to get my act together!
He wants a sports party with all different stations...basketball free throws, soccer goal, and lots more.
The question is, how many children to invite. He has a class of 26 children. Do you invite them all? I know our little house couldn't handle them all...
Guess I better get planning...I only have a couple weeks until it is here.
Not too much going on here in Stantonland. J was supposed to have baseball tonight, but the game was rained out. I am actually kind of thankful... it is cold out, and I really didn't want to sit out there in the cold drizzle.
I spent the day working with Sarah at the TRBC costume shop. She is really doing a great job getting things cleaned up and organized over there.
We were going through a bunch of hats today that were donated to the church. There are some really great hats there...kind of made me wish that we still dressed up like that on occasion. Some of them were so well preserved in their original hat boxes. Wish I had my camera with me!
Tim is helping his friend Isaiah this weekend. Isaiah's youth group is having an all night activity Friday night. We'll see how long Tim lasts! Ha! I think he will have a great time.
Haven't figured out what J and I will do tomorrow night yet. We may just hang out at home.
Boy, am I a slacker or what? I haven't posted in almost a month...though I am not sure why. Every time I go to post something, I just can't seem to come up with anything.
So here I am today at the urging (nagging?) of a friend. :)
This week, my son is on spring break. It has been an absolutely gorgeous week so far...70 degrees every day. Well, yesterday, I had the blessing of being a mommy at home all day long. We had such a good day. The day began with J coming into my room shouting, "Mommy! I pulled out my tooth!" I was SO glad as this tooth has been dangling in J's mouth for several weeks. (He hates when I pull them out for him). So, he proceeded to call Daddy and the grandparents. MaMa asked him what he gets for losing his tooth, so I told him that he could pick whatever he wanted to do for the day.
Well, after a little deciding over a breakfast of waffles, J decided that he wanted both of us to stay in our pajamas all day long and watch a movie. …
It seems I really have not had the energy or the desire to blog lately. I am not really sure why that is, but it has been a while.
So tonight, I find myself wide awake at 2:30 in the morning...lots of thoughts running through my head, and I just can't seem to sleep. So here I am.
Most of my thoughts are surrounding a ministry project I was asked to help with over a year ago. I was so thrilled to be a part of it...put all of my energy and passion into it for about a year. Long hours, hard work (physical and mental). And in a matter of moments, it was all gone...for some reasons I have yet to understand.
It is hard because I know that there are fragments of the work around that reflect the time, effort and money put in to this ministry that never was...and sometimes (on nights like tonight) I wake up and think about it...wondering what I could have done differently.
Was it just a waste of the Lord's money? We still have supplies sitting in boxes...some of the very expensive.
Today is one of those days where I just plain feel overwhelmed. Not because of the tasks ahead of me, but because of the choices ahead of me.
If you are someone who knows me personally, you know that decision-making is not one of my strong characteristics. I am a great follower, co-captain, second fiddle. Though I can lead and have a strong personality to lead, I often choose not to because I know that there are others out there who are much more well-equipped than I am.
So we have some big decisions in front of us...and though I am overwhelmed and struggle with unbelief, today I am choosing to believe God.
Father, I am so grateful for Your love. Today, I choose to believe You. Help me to listen for Your voice and not the other voices of doubt, unbelief and self. I love You. Amen.
A co-worker just shared this a moment ago..."God whispers in your soul and speaks to your mind. Sometimes when you don't have time to listen, he has to throw a brick at you. It's your cho…
So this was definitely a big night for all of us Steeler fans! What an awesome game! Both sides played their hearts out.
We haven't lived in PA for several years, but I grew up just north of Pittsburgh, so I will always be a Pittsburgh girl at heart. My guys decided this year to cheer for the Cardinals...a little bit out of orneriness and a lot because of the fact that Kurt Warner is a believer.
Towards the middle of the game, my seven year old started getting upset because the Cardinals weren't winning and Kurt Warner is a Christian.
Sometimes I think that we as believers feel that way. We are offended when something goes wrong in our lives. We act as if we should be the "winner" in every situation. But that is not true. Christ promised to be with us...but He never promised everything in our lives would magically work out simply because we are a Christian. We will face tough times...disappointment...heartache.
"But in Friendship... we think we have chosen our peers. In reality, a few years’ difference in the dates of our births, a few more miles between certain houses, the choice of one university instead of another, posting to different regiments, the accident of a topic being raised or not raised at a first meeting – any of these chances might have kept us apart. But, for a Christian, there are, strictly speaking, no chances. A secret Master of Ceremonies has been at work. Christ, who said to the disciples 'Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you,' can truly say 'You have not chosen one another, but I have chosen you for one another.' The Friendship is not a reward for our discrimination and good taste in finding one another out. It is the instrument by which God reveals to each the beauties of all the others." -C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves
Hi, friends. Sorry it has been so long since I have posted.
We had a wonderful time on our cruise to Mexico. It was nice to be together as a family without the crazy business of cell phones and computers. Though I love these conveniences, sometimes I think they make our lives busier than they need to be.
Anyway, before I go off on a tangent, we woke up to beautifully ice covered trees this morning. It looked a bit like Narnia around here. I was waiting for the characters to come out of our woods. :) It amazed me to see the beauty that surrounded me. All I could think is "How Great is Our God!" The ultimate creative One who made this beautifully intricate world, the King of Kings, Great Jehovah cares about me...insignificant me with all of my faults, failures, shortcomings and selfishness.
The Stanton Family will be taking a break from blogging this week. We have an amazing opportunity to go on a Christian cruise to Mexico thanks to my wonderful boss, Charles Billingsley. You can check it out here.
Anyway, we are looking forward to some time together. Hope it doesn't rain!
Thanks, Kathy and Sarah, for holding down the fort. And thanks, Jacque, for taking care of our house!
Hard to believe that another year has come and gone! Things have been a bit crazy in the Stanton house lately. We spent Christmas in Atlanta with Tim's family. Jonathan had a WONDERFUL time with his cousins Riley and Walker. We were also able to catch up with Angela and Larry Prince.
My brother got engaged over the holidays and is planning a November 2009 wedding. We are so happy for Kenny and Andrea.
Tim turned 31 on December 29. Boy, are we getting OLD! :)
Jonathan also got his tonsils out the same day. So this past week has been pretty mellow in the Stanton house.
Hope your new year has started out well. Looking forward to what God has in store in 2009!