Sunday, January 31, 2010

Slappy Goes Sledding

Just like the rest of the family, Slappy enjoyed the 14 inches of snow that we received over the weekend.

Yes. That is her going down the hill in the sled unattended. What?!

Then we decided she clearly needed family time, so she climbed in the sled with Amy Noll and Asher. Good times.

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Just do yourself the favor and say yes to clicking play.

Sesame Street on Hulu

If you start watching one clip, they play continuously and so we started watching them as the snow fell rapidly on Friday afternoon.

This was the kids favorite and we have laughed a lot about it since then.


Friday, January 29, 2010

Ever Feel Like This?

Last night, one of our college friends fathers died after going in for a general surgical procedure.
Just really an unexpected blow.
It's a real ding dong dandy. But not so dandy.

We'd like for the hits to cease for a little while.

But I've been reminded lately that God is not to be found in our circumstances like a giant Magic 8 Ball. Often I believe I can read how pleasing my life is or isn't to God by my circumstances (like reading tea leaves or something). If things are good, then I'm on solid ground. If bad, then I need to shake things up until they get better. But I'm learning you can't just grind out life working harder until it gets better.

These things are going to keep coming. That is life.
Someone else is GOING to die.
Someone else is GOING to lose their job.
Someone else is GOING to get married and have great joy.
So have I. I am going to experience great highs and great lows in my life. Who is God going to be in the midst of these things to me?

God doesn't say anything on the topic except this:
He just says..."I AM."

He just wants me to open my hands and take what he is trying to place into them in the midst of whatever is going on-good or bad.

"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows." James 1:17

My life isn't a Magic 8 Ball that I can read how pleasing my life is or isn't to God by my circumstances either. I'm just trying to open my hands and see how God wants to fill them.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Now in HD

As many of you know, we are sports crazies in our house. Whatever the sport, we watch it. But we tend to really really like sports that are what some would call "Olympic Sports" like tennis, soccer, cycling, and of course the upcoming Winter Olympiad. Wow, I am so excited about that.

But, many nights this week have been dominated by the Australian Open. Just tonight, South Carolina men's basketball beat Kentucky 68-62! At halftime and right after we watched the highlights and we immediately switched over to watching the Open.

But we were a bit disturbed by Venus Williams because it DEFINITELY looked like a full-moon was coming at us in HD on our screen. Wanna see why?
Flesh colored underwear. That barely covered her

Thanks Venus!
It's made the Open more well...OPEN.

Always a Question

I'm sitting at my favorite coffee shop in Asheville next to the bathroom and everytime a person walks out, I have to wonder...

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday Morning Come On Down

My friend Heather had this video up on her Facebook wall and it made me laugh-so I thought I would repost it here.

This is sometimes what it looks like to run Bible study with high schoolers.
Their questions are only slightly more sophisticated than Ben's in the video, but no less rapid-fire. Oh and the polar bear question? I've definitely gone down that rabbit hole. And had girls crying over Jesus killing endangered animals. Definitely.

I have stepped away from most of my friends; high school and grown-up, in the last few weeks simply because I haven't had a lot to give away. I am doing my best to find time to be quiet and restore myself, but the discipline is difficult and I am still exhausted. The only good thing, is that I have found myself to be so totally emptied of myself that anything of substance that is "good" to come out of me is straight from God. He has to fill my tank because I am incapable of doing it myself.
Be with me when I am fearful
to make me faithful.
Be with me when I am faithful
to make me fruitful.
Be with me when I am fruitful
to make me humble.
For it is only by your grace
that I was chosen to serve you;
only by your strength
that I am even able to serve;
only by
your faithfulness
that I am still serving you today...

-Ken Gire
Moments with the Savior

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Today would have been John Noll's 17th birthday and I have no more understanding today than two months ago.

My heart is broken maybe a bit more than ever. Because the reality of his life no longer being lived is sinking in. The fact that no one gets to celebrate moments with him anymore has officially hit.

I'm so frustrated for my friends that they don't get to have him anymore. They are left to learn how to live life anew struggling with his loss. This in addition to all they have already experienced.

Please lift up the Noll family today. This is a really tough week as it is many people's birthday's. And it's the anniversary of dark days in their lives.


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Don't Be Alarmed

If you come to my house and see this painting hanging.
Or if you are my brother and find this arriving at your house soon.
Or if you are my sister and find this arriving for your son's room soon.

Really, the possibilities are endless.
Oh Robin Plemmons. How do you do it?

Please go visit Lemons With a Pea at etsy and give her all your money won't you?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Thoughts on Haiti

Now that the Haiti crisis is a few days old and NONE of the dust has settled but people (perhaps you) are trying to sort out what really can and can not be done for these people from our county, perhaps you would enjoy reading my friend Liz's blog.

Liz just finished an around the world mission trip and has spent an inordinate amount of time with an orphanage in Haiti. In fact, she was in the middle of raising funds for a return trip there at the end of February when the earthquake struck.

I know we all have "this organization is doing this" and "this is this" blah blah's that keep us from helping out. But here is the real deal.

People are really going to this country. And really loving these people.
These people that are going? They are the hands and feet of Christ. They are extending the mercy that we have not ourselves been called on to go and do, yet. It is our blessing to send them with prayers and gifts of financial freedom to go and do the work they have been called to do.

So go.
Go visit Liz's blog.
Pray for the Canaan Orphanage.
Give money.
Pray again.
Consider going.
Pray again.
Add Liz's blog to your Google Reader.
Find out what a Google Reader is.
Add lots of blogs to the Google reader.
Pray again.

Winter, What Wrath You Hath Wrought

This is about the only good thing to come of the cold. Adorable child looking even more adorable.

I admit it.
I moved to the South to escape feeling cold all the time.

I was cold ALL the time in high school.
And warm, sunny HOT freaking HOT Columbia, South Carolina was right up my alley.

The temperature in the last couple of weeks has bugged me.
I am cranky.
I don't have time or energy to get into it all here, but this week in particular has been especially cranky.

But this sign, from when we went to the swamp over Christmas for a hike-reminded me of the sweet times that are to come in a few weeks (hopefully). Oh just think of when we can just go outside and get all bit to 'you-know-where' and LIKE IT.

I would rather like to feel a mosquito war zone as opposed to the personality war zone that has been in my little neck of the woods. But spring will be here soon and I will be lamenting that rainy cruddy muddy weather perhaps? Or will everything feel fresh, new and full of hope? Gosh I hope so.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Flying with Kids?

We have turned the corner in our house and have already started looking towards the summer (aren't we all?) and our travel plans. Since we will be in Colorado for a portion of our summer and flying out there is more than likely going to happen, the new TSA regulations have given me a bout of heart palpitations trying to convince my kids that the last 60 minutes of a flight are ONE BIG ADVENTURE with NO TOYS WHATSOEVER!

Maybe this is the case for you this spring or summer too.
I just read this post on and maybe it will come in handy...or maybe I will blog about what an absolute crap storm we experienced. Who's to say?

Take a look:

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

One Little, Two Little, Three Little Indians

While we were in Columbia during Christmas, I had to get a little bit of work done-like you do and I left the kids to their own devices one morning.

They were playing very nicely with each other while I filled out my expense report and I began to hear things like, "Just use this color" to which I said, "You guys are drawing on paper right?" They answered that they were and I left them alone.
Then I heard,
"You're an INDIAN"..."No, I'm an INDIAN"...then I went to investigate:

I, of course, then told them (then and there) that they would from now on refer to themselves as Native Americans.
And then threw them into the shower for a scrub down that made them yelp in pain.
Like good little natives.

Domestic Bliss

Lucy surprised us over the weekend by running a little 103 degree fever. What a sweet child.

She is totally fine today of course, except for this nasty little cough that she has developed.
We've been giving her Mucinex to help move the cold along and after dinner, that cough moved along all over her comforter. Spaghetti plus cough mucus. That's exactly what the commercials promise isn't it?

I loaded up her comforter to take to the laundromat when I noticed that she also had a little "accident" while taking a nap on Matt's pillow yesterday. So, I threw that sucker in our washing machine while I ran out the door.

I came back to this.

It's like Howard the Duck died in the middle of my washing machine.

I forgot to switch the settings from bedding to gentle.
So now, Matt has no more down pillow.

Of course, Martha Stewart or somebody would have restuffed the pillow and used it again probably.
I just haven't got it in me.
Marshall's has them on sale right now.
Hopefully, my washing machine won't be worse for the wear!

Monday, January 4, 2010

School Photo Shoot

I mean, adorable.

But expensive. Like, crazy expensive.
So, that's why we have a camera.

We let them take these pictures once a year and the rest of the year, rely on me.

But these are really cute.
The best one is the two of them together. But my scanner got moved to my basement and it is currently -3 degrees here and I love you-but not that much.
Perhaps you can make do and just believe me based on these, that they cooperated. They were holding hands and facing each other and it looks like they are about to go to prom together. 'Nuff said.

Christmas Photo Shoot

As you can tell by my new header (or not if you are using Google Reader), I took the kids out on a little adventure for a downtown Asheville photo shoot prior to Christmas.

We got all dressed up and danced around the Flat Iron for about 10 minutes in the middle of needing to do downtown Christmas shopping. The kids couldn't have been better about this and I am super SUPER grateful for these pictures. The Flat Iron is one of my favorite Asheville landmarks and the kids will probably get their picture taken in front of it for the rest of their lives if I can help it.

Click on any of the pictures to see them bigger. Oh and the dress Lucy is wearing? One of my high school girls made it. MADE IT. In school. For my Lucy. How sweet is that? Lucy LOVES wearing it.

Umm. Guess who's growing up every single second right in front of my eyes?

Just down the road...posing with iron people. They were in hilarious moods.
To be fair, Lucy did get a bit tired near the end...poor widdle baby.
Mean mommy MAKE you take pictures. Ugh.