Dec 30, 2007

Are You Ready for 2008?

Are you ready for the new year? I am so ready. Skip co-preached today with Michael Smalley on Personal Responsibility for our actions, and how we need to involve Christ with ever decision and step we take this new year. He and Michael were so stinkin' funny that I could barely take them seriously to take in the message. It is a fault of my husband to get off track easily, but then when he prayed the invitation prayer for those who had not yet asked Christ into their hearts, I just about burst into tears. I was so proud of his realness, and the way he spoke in such a simple and beautiful way to reach the lost. Skip and I cannot wait to see what the new year holds, and we pray that God will quickly reveal to us some things which we have struggled with (like our house stuff). If you want to read a great post by a wonderful friend of mine, go here. She writes about what I am feeling to a tee.
Oh, I want to introduce you to two of my BFF's for the new year. Hopefully I will be spending a lot of time with them. Here is Queen of the Roller Derby

and Nike Kill Me Now.

Dec 28, 2007

Highlight pics from Christmas

My dear MIL gave each of the girls these beautiful Moses Baskets and homemade blankets and pillows for their Bitty Baby dolls. Yes, my 13 year old still plays with her American girl dolls. Quite the investment since she started playing with them at about 6 years old.

Skip is dressed in his costume for the Christmas show(thankfully he shaved "The Stache" Christmas morning. I insisted it had to go or ELSE.

My niece Samantha getting her Bitty Baby from MeeMee and PawPaw

My brother-in-law Tony, Steph, sis Debbie, and Matt

My nephew Conner is always moving, so this is the best shot I could get.

The Family hanging out at my Daddy's house

My girls with their little cousin Shelby

Shelby and Skip playing princess dress-up

Cingular's Raising the Bar at my mom's house
(Matt, Ashley, Steph, Seth and Annie)

BTW, I did get the roller skates I wanted. Hopefully my next post will NOT involve a picture of me in a cast. I'm trying to take it slow, and so far so good. Christmas was wonderful for us-lots of time with family and those we love.

Dec 26, 2007

Today I'm...

Today I'm letting the house stay messy, I'm eating whatever I want, and I'm going on a date with the hubby. Why? Because it is my b-day, that's why. We celebrated almost a month ago, so it's really not so bad turning 40 today. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas yesterday. I will post some of our pics soon. God bless!

Dec 23, 2007

Funny Things This Week

This week I had a few moments of hysterical laughing, even though some of which involved embarrassment on my part.

1. I was in the Chick-Fil-A drive through window and heard someone honking at me. It was Santa on a motorcycle waving. I don't know why, but that just cracked me up. It was like he knew me. I waved back and then he drove away.

2. At Academy the other day, I helped Annie try on a pair of roller skates. I always loved roller skating back in junior high, so I tried on a pair myself. After a couple of awkward steps, I was back in the saddle. Skip turned the corner just as I did a turn and began skating backwards. (I know, I truly have no shame.) The look on his face was priceless. It was the last thing he expected to see coming around the corner. Then we started laughing so hard I almost fell and had to grab his basket. In case you see him, I really do want these for Christmas.

3. I went to a very crowded convenience store two nights ago for a couple of items, and I was just in one of those smiling, happy moods. Well, I was until I turned onto the aisle by the freezer items. You see, I am wearing flip flops in December and not paying attention to the water on the floor by the ice section. You can probably guess what happens next. Actually, if I would have done a quick fall that would have been better. Instead, time stood still as I slowly did the biggest split (that was almost a fall) I have ever done IN MY LIFE and I've done plenty. Last year at Seaworld, just to name one example. When I looked up, I saw this handsome young man in shock next to me. He tried to act super concerned to see if I was okay, but I know he was about to bust a rib trying not to laugh. I don't blame him. I totally would have. Anyway, at record speed, I made it to the counter only to find a 5 minute wait with guess who behind me. I know my face was as red as Santa's suit.

4. My friend Tiff sent me a funny home school video the other day, and when I showed Skip we found that the guy who made it has a website. He is Christian comedian, but we've never heard of him before. We have to get him to come to our church. Our favorite is Cletus take the Reel but you can check out some of his other videos and clips here.

Dec 22, 2007

“It Truly Is a Wonderful Life” by Susie Mozisek

Some of the cast from Parkway Church's "It's a Wonderful Life" radio show.

This year has been a year like no other that Skip and our family have ever known. From changing jobs and leaving friends, to big struggles financially with our home on the market, to overcoming great trials at our new church; this has been a year of difficulty and stress. Now add into the mix home schooling three children for the first time. We have wondered so many times over the last six months “Why?” Why have we not sold our home? Why are we so tired? Why can’t life be easier? There has been many late nights spent in prayer and in tears. One thing God keeps telling us both is to wait. He has something special for us. I kept thinking to myself that it would be the gift of a house sold and that would make everything okay again. After months and months, that is still not the case.

This year’s Christmas program is “It’s A Wonderful Life” live radio show. Skip wanted to do this for quite some time, and actually convinced Parkway church to let his wish come true. He could have settled for just a normal service with a few Christmas songs, some pretty stage decorations, and a cool funny video thrown in the mix. I wouldn’t have complained having a husband home during the two weeks before Christmas since I haven’t had that in ten years. However, Skip knew this church needed something special. It needed a positive and a unique Christmas. This radio show is definitely unique and very special. I have had the privilege of watching hours of work done by actors, sound effect artists, set designers, and just anyone willing to help pitch in to make the show what it is. And what it is is EXCELLENT!

Over the last two nights of watching the play during dress rehearsals, I was there to help Skip with last minute needs or to share my opinions of how everything looked and sounded. I am probably the most critical person when it comes to things looking and sounding good. Skip has rubbed off on me after knowing him almost 25 years. But as I sat and watched this story of George Bailey unfolding for my 100th time, I felt a real stirring inside my heart. This story is for everyone feeling exactly like Skip and I have felt this year. You see, Skip and I have some big plans. We have dreams that we have had to shut down due to crisis situations, just like George Bailey. We have had to settle at times, when we want to shoot for the moon. We have had to make choices that please others, when we really would rather be selfish for ourselves. I can’t believe it didn’t really hit me before, but Skip is bringing this show to life because he feels a whole lot like George Bailey. I don’t think I know of a greater man who has given so much of himself for a family, for God’s kingdom, and for a lost world as my sweet husband. You wouldn’t know unless you asked him, but Skip is really suffering with a lot of hip pain right now. Eventually his right hip will be replaced, as his left was last year. I rarely hear him complain, and his job never suffers from it. If anything, the pain presses him on to work harder.

Now, I would love to share about dance recitals, and extra curricular activities the kids are excelling in, but this is not the season for that. This is the season of Ashley baking her extraordinary banana bread, of Annie riding her Pink Barbie scooter at record speed down the block, and Seth shooting targets with his BB gun. It is the season of me spending some special time in study with the Lord who has an awful lot to still teach me. It is also the season of staying up way too late with the kids watching just one more ridiculous Youtube video Skip has found that will now complete our laughter for the night.

Overall this year is one I’m still trying to figure out. But I can say without hesitation that I truly have A WONDERFUL LIFE!
*This morning I ran to get a paper and I found the most awesome half page story with three large color pictures promoting the Christmas show. What a blessing! If you want to see the article without the pictures, you can go here.

Dec 20, 2007

Thankful Thursday

I can't believe Christmas Day is only 6 days away! Are you ready? I'm getting there slowly but surely. My list of thankfuls this week are short and simple, but worth more than I could ever deserve.

1. Jesus, the one and only.

2. Skip, my love.

3. My babies.

4. My beautiful family on both sides.

5. My friends(old friends, new friends, and blog friends).

6. Food, clothing and shelter (truly I don't take these for granted anymore).

7. People who are unashamed and unafraid to reach a lost world.

8. Challenges(help me to grow).

9. Disappointment(brings me to my knees).

10. Music and laughter

If you want to share your own Thankful Thursday post with others, stop by here to join us all.

Dec 18, 2007

Pictures Full of Blessings!

This is my sweet twin niece and nephew giving each other a big fat hug! Aren't they just a bundle of cuteness? Shelby is dressed up in her Christmas outfit because she had a performance tonight at her school. Conner wasn't quite up to going, so we babysat him during the show.
My friend Dena from Corpus drove through yesterday on her way to visit family. We had lunch together at Chick-Fil-A and caught up on life. I love Dena to pieces and her precious girls.
Here is Emily, Annie and Abby(one of Annie's best friends). They could not stop hugging each other. Annie and Abby were in the same class the last two years of school, so Annie really misses Abby this year.

Today we were invited to a friend's house for a cookie exchange, and I saw my future dream house and land. I cannot tell you how gorgeous the house is, and especially the 25 acres it sits on. I think God showed me this special place today to remind me that IT WILL HAPPEN SOMEDAY. I need to not look at the struggles, the what ifs, and the disappointments that I'm currently facing, but to realize that God loves me, and he put desires in my heart for a reason. I need to keep believing Him and trusting Him.

Here is Seth and his friend Braiden enjoying the freedom that comes with just being boys outdoors without a single care or worry.

Ashley found a great big tree to lounge on. She wanted to stay and live with our new friends, but for some reason I had to take her home with me. I can't say I blame her for wanting to leave our city digs for some fresh air and beauty around every turn.

Here are some of the new friends I've made sitting on the back porch over looking the amazing backyard view of God's handiwork. Just breathtaking! I told my friend Deanna (who lives there) that I may start stalking her so I can come visit again. She looked a little worried. I hope she knows I'm just kidding. Well, a little.

Dec 17, 2007

Welcome, Welcome!

How fun is this? Another Bloggy Tour of Homes put on by Boomama which you are sure to enjoy immensely. I was a little late getting to the Christmas decorations this year, but they are now up in all their sparkle and shine.

Let's start with the front door. Their is only so much you can do with a rent house plain white door. I tried to make the most of it.
How about meeting the family? Okay, here is Dad(Skip), Me(Susie), Son(Seth), Daughter 1(Ashley), and our baby, daughter 2(Annie). This picture was taken downtown a few weeks ago. Skip took a pic of me with the kids and then I took one of him alone. Isn't Photoshop awesome!

Here is where most of the Christmas decor is found. As you walk in the front door and look to your left, you see the Christmas tree and the makeshift mantle. Pretty clever, huh? I love my simple centerpiece of Christmas balls in a hurricane. I've used it for a couple of years now, so I need to check out everyone else's ideas this year.

My MIL is always teaching me to incorporate my Christmas treasures into my own everyday setup. We worked together on the entertainment center. I love Christmas pictures of the kids, so you see them everywhere.

In the pic above, I forgot to remove someone's coke cup. Well, at least it's a Christmas paper cup.

This is just a table that I think is so cute with a few more Christmas items. It would be perfect for a nativity. Hint! Hint! It's just a shame I don't have my own set yet.

Since our fireplace has no mantle, I think it is perfect for a spray of Christmas beauty.

Lastly, what is a house full of decorations, if you don't have people over to enjoy it all with you? This is Skip's cast of "It's a Wonderful Life" watching "It's a Wonderful Life" while preparing for their live radio broadcast of "It's a Wonderful Life". Let's just say Gina(playing Mary) makes the BEST rum cake I have ever tasted. Dee-lish!

Here are two pics from my Mom's family Christmas we were honored to have at our home this past Saturday. A few family members are busy writing names for a drawing for gifts. This is so cool. Our families bring small gifts and we buy chances to win a gift. All the money we raise goes to a needy family in town. This year we raised quite a bit for an abandoned elderly couple in town with no family, no home, and no food. We started doing this three years ago, and it is now a new family tradition. I love it!!!

Skip took this panoramic view so I could remember that even though this year has been so hard financially, and our house is not my dream house, there was love all around me. God has truly blessed us this year!

Thanks for stopping by everyone! Grab some cookies and coffee on the way out. Merry Christmas!

Dec 14, 2007

"It's A Wonderful Life"

I have probably watched this movie at least 10 times over the last month as Skip has prepared for their live "radio" performance Christmas show coming up in only 8 days. It really is such a great story and one we should all watch at least once over the Christmas season.
Last night Skip had the cast over for snacks and practice. They all sat in front of our big screen and watched the movie, as Skip would stop and explain character feelings and background that would help the overall performance. I actually enjoyed watching Skip more than I did the movie last night. He is so passionate when he is directing and leading. He loves the process of seeing a project or new idea come to life. As I listened to him share with the group, I praised God for Skip's gifts and abilities. The gifts and abilities that God has allowed to provide food, clothing, and shelter for our family over the last 15 years of marriage. Even more than that, the gifts and abilities have helped reach so many for Christ through his ministry. Thank you God for all the talents you give each of us to accomplish your purposes.

Dec 12, 2007

What to Post...Hmmm?

Duran Duran Concert last night.

Not the best picture, but you can get a glimpse of two Duranies preparing to rock out to "A View to a Kill" and "Wild Boys". I think the best two songs of the night were "Reach Out for the Sunrise" and "Rio". Well, "The Reflex" and their newer "Falling Down" were pretty good too. You should have seen all the screaming forty year-olds. We had such a blast! Simon LeBon sounded amazing. He was definitely the best vocally that I've ever heard him. I think this was my fifth time to see , but the closest to the stage. We were about three feet from the stage, and I think John Taylor definitely winked at me twice. Ha Ha, just kidding. It was so hysterical after the concert. We went to Whataburger for taquitos and fries, and our whole group was walking around like 80 year olds. My feet were killing me, Skip's hip, our friend Bard's knees, and Skip's brother's back. Too funny! Skip has a short clip from the concert on his blog. One thing I realized last night is that our generation does not have trouble worshipping, but they do have trouble knowing who it is we should worship. My friend Mollie shouted over the noisy crowd last night, "Boy, do we live in a bubble." Sadly, I could not have agreed more. We have some major kingdom work to do people.

Dec 9, 2007

Tree is Finally Up!

I don't have much room for a tree this year, no staircase to spread out the garland and lights, and no mantle for the stockings, but I think everything turned out beautiful just the same.

I waited so late this year to get my tree up because I had to go back to Corpus and climb in my attic to retrieve our pre-lit tree. My legs are so sore from carrying boxes and tubs down the stairs. I think my muscles are in shock right now. Annie helped me with the ornaments while we listened to Michael W. Smith's Christmas CD. It reminds me more of a Nutcracker ballet type sound, but I love it nonetheless. Annie wasn't happy with that type of sound, so after 4 or 5 songs, I had to put on last year's Aly and AJ. It is one of my favorite Christmas CD's.
I had a huge Christmas wish answered today that I couldn't wait to share with all my blogging friends. My mom's husband Bobby had surgery to put in a stint in his aorta this week and he was able to go home in less than 24 hours. Praise God! But that wasn't the answer to prayer. We have been praying for him for years that he will come to know Christ as his personal Saviour. Well, today was a huge start. HE CAME TO OUR CHURCH! Our interim pastor shared a beautiful message and hopefully my stepfather was able to hear the voice of God calling to him. I could not be more thrilled. You know with all the house woes, and uncertainty that comes with that, this was a perfect gift to rejoice in. It is a wonderful start. I am so thankful for Bobby's heart being willing to step out and give it a try.
We have so much on our to do list this week, and I haven't bought a single gift. Can you imagine? Skip is having dental work tomorrow so please pray for little pain and a quick recovery. I am also having my mother's side of the family's Christmas party at my house this Saturday, so home schooling is going to involve a lot of Christmas music and cleaning. I'm still trying to figure out how to fit anywhere from 30 to 50 people in my home. I think we will have to spill out onto the back deck. Anyway, I hope you are all taking time this season to love your hubby, your family members and remember to show some Jesus love to everyone you come across. Blessings!

Dec 4, 2007

My Boys

Seth finally had his first hunting adventure yesterday. He and Skip went with some friends who have a ranch less than an hour from our home. They didn't shoot anything, but they had such a great time bonding and hanging out together in the deer blind. Seth and Skip captured a large buck on film. If you want to check it out, go by Skip's blog to take a look. You need to click on the word "here" when you get there. We laughed at our preppy boy dressed in camo with a Gap hat. Too funny!

Dec 3, 2007

Keeping a Secret Life

My Angela Thomas's bible study is simply incredible! I have done A Beautiful Offering before, but I am at a completely different place this time I am doing it. This week's study is called "Keeping a Secret Life" and it is all about having a secret relationship with our heavenly father. We are focusing on the private life of spending time with God, that in turn, results in a beautiful public life that people cannot help but see our precious God.

Sadly over the last six months or so, my private time with God has been pretty laxed and minimal and I keep wondering why I'm not able to SEE what God is doing more in my life. Every example when I talk to my ladies in bible study is past tense. Such as "Two years ago when God told me...." or "Last year I saw God miraculously...". I felt so frustrated that I wasn't able to give them current examples that are usually happening all around me. I think God is showing me this week, through this study, that I need to get back to him first. Quit focusing on the negatives! Quit worrying about the future! Quit wondering if I am doing my kids a disservice to home school them! Quit thinking all together for a minute and just sit! I need to sit at the feet of Christ and just adore him. I need to acknowledge that my public life isn't so great because my private time with him isn't either. For this week, I am going to strive to seek that private time with God.

Angela talks about three beautiful pieces of our lives that really get the attention of God when offered in private. The act of giving in secret, praying in secret, and fasting in secret are ones I really need to put into practice this holiday season. May each of you find that special time with our Saviour as well this Christmas, so that others who do not know Him will certainly WANT TO. God bless!

Dec 2, 2007

Pictures Galore!

Since Skip and I both have our fortieth birthdays within one month of each other, we decided to have a celebration together this year. His b-day was last month and mine is the day after Christmas. We met at a cute little restaurant downtown with family and some friends for dinner, and then we walked a block to my cousin's gorgeous coffee shop for dessert and karaoke. It was so fun to hang out and visit with those we love so much. If you are ever in the Victoria area, you need to go have the BEST coffee in the world. Delicious! I must say that my favorite part of the party was hearing my sweet daughter Ashley say the prayer before dinner, and laughing my head off at Skip's friends singing Duran Duran "Wild Boys" for him. My sis and my brother did "Summer Nights" from Grease. I had no idea they were such hams. Kirby and Skip did "Safety Dance", and our friend Bard did Johny Cash's "A Boy Named Sue". Too funny!
Various pictures from the party.

Blogger and I do not get along when it comes to pictures. I tried my best, but I can't get it right.

On the left is me with my sweet daughter Ashley and my niece Stephanie.

I love this picture of my sister Debbie and my brother Billy with me in the middle. This is our age order too. My sister looks so young, but she's two years older than me. My baby bro is only 5 years younger than me but he looks like he's twenty-five. Lucky guy!

Kim and Kay

Laura and Erik and little Lucas
My Daddy is on the left with his wife Carolyn.
Skip's parents Linda and Otto are on the right.

Skip and my brother singing Neil Diamond's "Love on the Rocks".

My mom and I posing for the camera. I will try to forgive her for the burnt orange sweater.

My sweet baby and me posing together on our special night.

Skip, Ashley, me and Annie singing "Livin' La Vida Loca". Not a pretty sight, but it was so much fun.