Dec 24, 2006

Merry Christmas!!!

Merry Christmas To You!

My kids and I joined Skip at the 1:00 service and stopped in the atrium for a quick family shot. He only has 3 more services and he will be home. He had a 2 hour break for lunch and we did a traditional family sit down dinner at Joe's Crab Shack. Ha Ha Ha! I love my coconut shrimp.

I love my sweet hubby. He said lunch with the family was the best part of his day today. I love that he feels that way. Annie (my 6 yr.old) took this picture. Not bad. I know you are probably wondering, "Why is Susie blogging on Christmas Eve?" Well, the presents are wrapped, the kids just settled in to watch a dvd with popcorn, candy and soda, and I have a moment to myself to relax.

Once again, Have a blessed Christmas celebrating our Saviour's birth! Love to all of you!

Dec 22, 2006

Only 3 More Days!

I am like a kid running around saying, "Do you know how many days left until Christmas?" I am so excited for many reasons. One is that the kids are going to have a wonderful Christmas this year. There has been unexpected blessings this month that I seriously need to write a book about someday. I will tell you one of the blessings. Skip went to check prices on electric guitars at his favorite music store the other day for our son, and he came home with one that is so awesome. The best part is that he paid nothing for it. The owner wanted to bless Skip for all his faithful business to his store. I was in shock at first, but then I thought to myself, "That is my Jesus. He looks out for our needs, as well as our desires." Oh, if you see my little munchkin running around, he doesn't know. I just love the fact he wants to be like his daddy.

Pretending to play guitar with a cardboard sign. Not for long. He He He!

Another reason I am so excited is that I will soon get some alone time with my hubby. We will be going to San Antonio for a night's stay on the Riverwalk for my b-day after Christmas. He booked the room and it looks gorgeous. I can't wait to stroll around and see the lights. How romantic! He has been hard at work making videos, learning music, and making all the preparations for another wonderful Christmas service at church. I pray we have many give their hearts to Christ this week. There are 10 services so I know Skip and the others will need lots of prayer for good health, strength and ability to make every service honoring to God and a blessing to those who see.

Lastly, and most importantly I can't wait to celebrate Jesus' birth with all my family. I have been so blessed this year, and I want my focus to remain on Christ throughout the gifts and get togethers.

Thank you fellow blogger friends for all the encouragement and love you send my way each day. You are truly such a special part of my life. It is so nice that you know me as "Susie, a pink carnation in bloom" and not as Skip's wife or a pastor's wife. I love you all dearly. Once again-Merry Christmas!

Dec 20, 2006

A Bad Call on My Part

I thought it might be fun to take each of my girls seperately to get their nails done before Christmas. I took Ashley this afternoon and everything was going great until about one-third of the way through my nail process, I happen to hear some very bad language coming from the huge big flat screen tv. The nail shop was showing "My Cousin Vinny" off a cable channel. Full "f" words were being used, and I immediately demanded to my person that they change the channel. My twelve yr. old was two rows behind me and I could only imagine what she was thinking. Did I mention she could read the closed caption as well as hear the words? It took about 5 more minutes of foul language before they finally changed the channel. Then about 10 minutes later I looked up and there are two naked people on the screen (Ashton Kutcher and Amanda Peet). I was almost done and Ashley was safely far away while her nails were drying. I was apalled at what I heard and saw. The most upsetting thing of all was that I was the only one (in the 15 plus people in the shop) who thought that was wrong. I left shaking and almost in tears at the whole ordeal. I should have left immediately or not paid, but instead I just left and told them that I did not appreciate them disrespecting me and my daughter by their distasteful choice of movies when children were present. Needless to say, I will not be frequenting Elite Nails ever again. Oh, the absolute worst thing is that I said I was never going back last year when they showed an R show and I forgot and went today anyway. I know that I do shelter my children a bit and one day they will have to face the world to be salt and light, but I felt like a total failure as a parent today. Ashley and I had quite a talk today on the way home and I am so proud of who she is in Christ. She hurts for those lost people and was as in shock as I was. Needless to say, I took Annie to a different shop which was much more family friendly and cheaper too.

Dec 19, 2006

I've Been Tagged Again-Ouch!

Pamela at Just the Two of Us tagged me for this very different meme. I wasn't sure if I should participate or not because it..., well it..., umm..., it reveals some personal weirdness in myself.

The Rules:Each player of this game starts with the “6 weird things about you”. People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says “you are tagged” in their comments and tell them to read your blog. Please don't be too harsh with me. This is embarrassing enough just writing.

1. Let me start with the physical weirdness first. I have (like Pamela) a beauty mark on my neck. Mine is about 5 inches down from my chin (right where a 16 inch chain would fall(in the center). I almost always wear a necklace or shirt to cover it because as a teen everyone thought it was a hickey. It was a perfect shaped heart as a kid but it has faded a little. My mom told me that an angel kissed it and left it for me. I almost received a demerit in my dance drill team for it once because an officer thought it was a hickey. I was devastated.
2. I have a thing I've always referred to as an extra "knee bone" As a child I would always be running, skating, jumping and cartwheeling. However, my muscles were developing quickly and I didn't know that this problem could occur. It is called Osgood-Schlatter Disease and it mostly affects boys because I guess they like to run, and jump a lot. The doctor found it when it had already formed and just told me to live with it. I would love to get the little bump removed, but I'm not sure what is involved. Skip has become rather fond of my legs just the way they are so it probably won't happen. No one has even noticed, but it really bothered me in high school when my drill team would just drop to our knees in a high kick performance. Ouch!
3. This one is just so bothersome about me this time of year. I carry an extraordinary amount of electricity in my body. Beware if I come near you in socks on carpet. Not really, I don't have to wear socks or anything on my feet. I am just a "shocky" person as my kids say. Skip even named me an X-Men character called "Spark" in one of his earlier blog posts. I panic at the gas station because I watched a prime time special once that showed how a tiny spark can start a gas fire. I know, I told ya'll I was weird. Oops, I just let out I was from Texas with my "ya'll". I hope that's not weird too.
4. As much as I'd like to move from the physical weirdness about myself, there is still more to come. My nose is always cold. No dog jokes please! My nose and well, when I was pregnant, so was my tooshie. Probably a poor circulation thing. Enough, enough, this is so embarrassing. Pamela, how could you? How could I?
5. I love to dance. I know many of you will say, "What's weird about that?" No, I really like to dance. Just ask my kids. I love to watch it and do it. I have always wanted to take a class as an adult, but haven't found anything yet. I don't like the normal dancing with the husband thing, although that is fine. I love just "freestyling it" with the kids listening to their disney pop music. I also loved watching the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader show on CMT because that is the kind of dancing that is so fun. Of course, I had to turn it off when the hubby walked in the room. No man should be exposed to those images. I just love watching the dancing. In my Drill Team, we followed the same style of dance as the DCC and I was always in shape. It was a blast, and a dance class may be just what my physical routine needs. (By the way, their actually is no physical routine at the moment).
6. Sometimes when I get a thought, idea or song lyrics in my head, I have to write them down immediately. I find a pen, lipstick or whatever to write with. I have so many songs, stories, and words written down that I never do anything with that it's scary. I love to write, but I hate to edit and work any further than the jot down stage. Maybe someday God will bless me with the gift of punctuation and editing. So far, no such gift.
Now, for the fun part of this meme. I will tag Tiffany, Julie, Sunny, Skip, Alisa, and Linda. I hope you find this as embarrassing as I did. Please, join in even if you weren't tagged. It is kind of fun to show your "weirdness" every once in a while.

Dec 15, 2006

Christmas Tour of Homes

Well, I am a little nervous to add my photos because I can't ever make them line up right in blogger. I just switched to beta and it is supposed to be easier, but I still have no idea what I'm doing. I guess I'll just do my best and see how it goes.

Here you have my front door. It is pretty simple, but it looks nice at night. We have never put up lights on the outside of the house before, but I keep hoping Santa will do it someday.

Next is the staircase. I love how this looks. I am a traditional red, green and gold girl for Christmas. I love how this looks at night, too. It's simple, but it adds so much. My kids don't like trying to find a place to put there hand and then getting scratched by garland. I tell them, "That's the price of beauty." Just kidding. You know as well as I do that kids don't use handrails.

The mantle is special because it holds my sweet babies stockings. I bought these stockings years ago at Dillards when my son Seth was a baby. I couldn't find the right size and match when Annie was born, so her's is a little different. I have thought about getting pretty trendy ones, but the kids would never let that happen. They like things to stay the same each year and they love to hang them themselves. We have gold stocking holders that say "joy" and a snowflake at each end. My wreath is probably 5 years old and barely holding on. I just keep fluffing that bow to get another season out of it.

This is our most recent ornament as a family. We picked it up in Estes Park, Colorado this summer while vacationing. Don't we make a great elk family? Or are they reindeer? I hope Skip isn't reading this. I always get mule deer, elk and regular deer mixed up.

Lastly, we have the Christmas tree. It is so very treasured to me since I have so many personal ornaments with sentimental value. Skip and I had an engagement party 15 yrs. ago and we still have almost all the ornaments that were given to us. The angel is probably 13 yrs. old and still looks brand new. This year only Annie, my six yr. old helped me decorate the tree. I think she did a marvelous job(don't look too close) He He He. She is going to be a little homemake just like me. She loves to set up house already.

I wish I had a Christmas dish to share, but believe me you wouldn't want what my brain could come up with at this late hour. I had raspberry tea (several glasses) and the caffeine is in full swing. Thanks for stopping by, and I can't wait to see all the beautiful decorations in your home.

Dec 14, 2006

Merry Christmas Blog World!

Merry Christmas from my family to yours!

We did not get out Christmas cards last year because I was so picky about them looking good and we ran short of time. This year we just threw some Christmas pjs on the kids and there you have it. I think they look precious and comfy at the same time.

I'm off to shoot a few pictures for the Christmas Tour of Homes that begins tomorrow. I hope everyone is ready to join in the fun. I didn't go crazy with decorations, but it's "beginning to look a lot like Christmas" around here.

Dec 13, 2006

Live Christmas Every Day

I received this poem with a Christmas card today from a very giving family that belongs to our church. It brought tears to my eyes because I know how it feels to receive the greatest gift of all, our precious Jesus. Thanks to this special family for your secret gift too!

Live Christmas Everyday by Helen Steiner Rice

Christmas is more than the end of the year
More than a time for presents and cheer
More than a time for exchanging greetings
More than the tinsel that hangs on the tree
More than the baubles and glitter we see
More than a time for mere happiness
More than small words can ever express

Christmas is one day we find it is good
To live the way that we always should
A day when man tries to be generous and kind
A day when he sees with his heart, not his mind

And that is the way we should live all the year
Not only a few days when Christmas is here
For that is the way God wants us to live
Sharing the joy that comes when we give

For then and then only will relentlessness cease
And all of the world will be finally at peace
For the tidings of Christmas can only come true
When Christmas is lived every day the year through.

I just loved hearing that poem. It also made me want to look up the author, which I did, and found her life story so inspirational. I am not much into poetry reading, but I will definitely read more of her's.

***An update on the house: We are waiting to hear if a buyer (the first looker we've had) will choose our house or one other. It is down to two. Wouldn't that be a wonderful early Christmas gift? I will let everyone know soon. I know God is with me no matter the outcome. I am praising Him for His perfect will.

Dec 11, 2006

Christmas Treats

This is just a sample of the cookies my kids made on Saturday. If the truth be known, this is all we have left Monday morning. All the others were given away or eaten (mostly eaten). I made some fudge too. I have never ever made fudge before because I thought it might involve one of those thermometer thingys I have never owned. I was looking on a can of Eagle Brand milk and I saw it had a fudge recipe with only a few ingredients and a few steps. How easy! It turned out okay, but from now on I will add way more nuts. I love nuts! I gave some fudge to Annie's friend and her family. Annie came home after playing, and said the family's dogs got into the fudge and ate all of it. "They had to leave them outside for a while in case they puked," Annie explained. Great, I thought. The first time I make fudge, I kill two dogs. Well, I haven't heard any news yet, so hopefully everything has "passed".
I would love to try to make some divinity this year (another thing I've never tried to make). My mom has always made divinity, but she says the weather has to be just right. I also know for sure that a candy thermometer is involved, as well as "spinning a thread" while stirring. What is spinning a thread? If someone knows of any easy divinity recipe, then pass it my way. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

Dec 10, 2006

"I Scarce Can Take It In"

Every once in a while I have one of those days so full of blessings that I can scarcely take it all in without breaking down in tears. Today was definitely one of those days. I knew when I started my day in prayer (actually writing it down) that it was going to be a good day. Sometimes I can just feel God whispering, "Just watch what I have planned for my daughter today."
Of course getting to church is always an adventure, especially with slow moving sleepy children who stayed up too late watching "Superman Returns" with their night owl Daddy, who shall remain nameless. We made it out the door and only missed the first song at worship time. Music was amazing, as well as the sermon. I still can't believe I am so blessed with such an awesome church. Then, as I was waiting for Skip to come home, I was praying about how I could possibly do something special for a friend who has several sick children at home, and Skip called and offered to barbecue tonight and he would make plenty for my friend's family. "How sweet!" I said to God. My hubby offered before I even asked. Then when he came in he handed me a Christmas card from a sweet family at church. Inside was a nice surprise which could not have come at a better time. Two of my girls have costume fees for their Spring Dance recital due this week, and this family just happen to give the card today. I was already crying from my heart being so filled today, and now I had a physical blessing too. Then I go check my email, and my sweet friend Sara sent me an email that almost took my joy to a whole new level. I haven't seen her in years and she wrote she and her family are going on a mission trip to Mexico and may come through Corpus on the way. Okay, this is just too good to be true. She lives in Alabama, and we only visit through letters and email. I am so happy!!!
Oh, I almost forgot to tell you something else. My house has been on the market for one week now, and we finally had our first person look on Thursday. They are from out of town and really liked the house. They came and looked again on Friday, and I am praying that they choose it among the others they saw. I know God is in control, and I have so much peace about it. It will sell exactly when God wants it to sell. I have had so many neighbors this week question me as to why we are selling, and tell me that this is the worst time to have a house on the market. I have answered everyone calmly with these words, "I am trusting God with my house and I have faith that He is in control." Lastly, as I am typing this post, my husband is ironing my clothes for the week. I told you it was one of those days!

*My blogger will not let me indent my paragraphs for some reason. It looks like one big paragraph, but I am posting it anyway.

Dec 7, 2006

My Favorite Christmas Memory

MomRN2 is hosting a wonderful holiday get together at "My Quiet Corner". We are invited to share our favorite Christmas memory and then link to her site for more wonderful stories.
My favorite memory occurred two years ago on Christmas Eve. If any of you know about my life during the week leading up to Christmas, it can get a little lonely. I have my precious children to keep me busy with all the preparations for Christmas, but my husband spends a great deal of time at the church that week. We typically have about 3 to 4 days of Christmas Eve services so everyone gets a chance to experience our wonderful celebrations of Christ's love at Christmas.
I don't every want my children to have any bad feelings about the time my husband is at the church, so we save all our cookie baking, looking at Christmas lights and other fun activities for that time. They don't seem to miss daddy that much, and he takes off the whole week after Christmas to make up for it. I, however, was feeling a bit lonely the whole day of Christmas Eve two years ago. It was very cold, and there was rain in the forecast. Instead of feeling lonely, my son Seth and I started focusing our time on praying that God would make a miracle occur for us this Christmas. We prayed it would Snow! Yes, I know it isn't really possible this far south, but the conditions seemed so perfect. As we started watching the weather channel, it seemed more and more likely that it could occur. We were really praying now, and as we left for church to go to the last Christmas Eve service of the night, the sky had clouds we had never seen before. I started to get a little excited at the thought of the kids catching snowflakes on their tongue, or even gathering up enough for a snowball or two. Now remember, my kids have never had snow in Corpus and the only times they have played it is in Colorado in June (yucky dirty snow).
As the last song was played during service, Skip opened the doors to the sanctuary, and the most miraculous thing was happening. It was SNOWING! We aren't talking little snowflakes either. We are talking beautiful, gigantic snowflakes. Everyone was praising God and in quite a bit of shock. We as a family played from 8:30 until midnight outside in about 5 to 6 inches of snow. Neighbors came together building snowmen, and talking about the miracle of what was happening. My son Seth to this day believes that his prayer is what made it happen. It was truly a Christmas I will never forget.
The next morning we drove to see our families just and hour and a half north and found that they had 10 inches of snow. What a day my kids had! It was a blessing to top all blessings. I loved every minute of that Christmas and the kids will never forget God's goodness that he gave us that Christmas night.

Dec 2, 2006

Saturday Seven

I couldn't think of a title for my post today so I am making up one. It was a great week despite the morning of sickness, not to be confused with morning sickness (simply not possible). Thanks to everyone who prayed and wished me well. Now, onto some joy. I am so excited about Christmas even though I haven't done a lick of shopping. Well, actually I've bought about 4 small things. I have a way to go and I can't wait. I don't know if I've ever shared this, but I love to shop. I could probably do it as a full time job because I love it so much. Okay, here are some highlights of the week.

1. Blessing! Ashley was able to go back to dance on Tuesday and participate. Her foot has healed wonderfully.
2. Got the house on the market. It is not showing up as a listing yet, but it should in the next day or two. I have been doing a lot of cleaning and straightening and I realized that I want to have people over more when the house is in order. Just my thing, even though I know it doesn't matter to others.
3. "Cheetah Girls rock!" These were the actual words shouted by my six year old during the concert Wednesday night. I enjoyed watching her and her friend Taylor more than the actual concert. They were hilarious as they tried to imitate and sing along. I know they will always remember this. The performances were incredible. The singers and dancers were exceptional. Everyone was decked out in Cheetah print, and I was officially a "Cheetah mama" who also had to dance and sing along. One time Annie looked over at me and motioned for me to sit down. Could embarrassing your child start at six? The bigget blessing was that my friend Michelle was able to get us the tickets so there wasn't any expense. I think Michelle "rocks".
4. My bible study group was awesome this week. I can't believe we only have two weeks left before we finish. It seems like I was just asking for ideas for our new study. These women have become such a sweet part of my life. I love each one so dearly and it never fails to amaze me how much they want to grow in Christ. We are planning a new study in late January, but haven't decided on a book or bible study yet. Let me know if any of you know of a goodie.
5. Skip and I went to Kikos Mexican Restaurant for a date lunch yesterday. I love mexican food and it is always a treat to have time alone with the hubby during the month of December. His life tends to get a little crazy this month as a worship pastor. The new building adds a little extra on his plate, but he loves the excitement.
6. My kitchen caught on fire yesterday. Well, let me rephrase that. I was attempting to bake 3 things at once and I laid wax paper near an open candle and poof! Luckily the three sections of burning wax paper flew and landed on the tile and not the carpet which was only inches away. My kids stared in horror as I quickly put out the flames. I conclude that I am a panicker and do not think well in dangerous situations. What is really scary is that my fire alarm did not come on. Better check that battery. Nothing was harmed or destroyed and I quickly got the smell out of the house. Skip walked in after a couple of minutes and had no clue what almost occured. He was only 30 feet away in the bedroom. It was another example to share with the kids how I had just prayed that morning for protection for our family.
7. Skip and I hosted a Christmas party for his production/music staff and their spouses last night(hence the baking I was doing). Skip made humongous steaks and baked potatoes. It was a great night of fellowship and feasting. I was too full from our Mexican food lunch to have any dinner, but I enjoyed visiting with my dessert and coffee.

I'm so glad it's Saturday and we have no plans today. It is beautiful outside and I am going to see if the kids are up for something fun. Have a great weekend everyone. Be blessed!