Aug 30, 2008

I Think She Rocks!

Rarely have I ever mentioned anything political on this blog. I'm just not that into politics, but I do have some pretty strong convictions of my own. This new VP running mate for McCain not only has some strong convictions, she blew me away yesterday with her speech I watched live. She was AMAZING! I could not have been more pleased with the direction the Republicans chose to take.

On a side note, Skip and I were discussing how slick the democratic campaign was with their list of musical guests. We saw they had Bon Jovi, Springsteen, Jennifer Hudson, Stevie Wonder and one of my favorites Sheryl Crow. They also have a huge list of celebs supporting him.

We decided to see who will be rocking the house at the Republican Convention and I guess I shouldn't be surprised that it is mostly country artists. They will have superstars like Gretchen Wilson, Charlie Daniels, LeAnn Rimes and John Rich who is doing a new song "Raising McCain". Isn't there one rock or pop band that will stand up for the conservatives? This made me laugh because I think rock in essense kind of goes against the whole premise of conservatism. Anyway, it would be nice to see someone like Duran Duran singing a little song called "Wild Boys" to get the crowd going. Just a dream, but luckily I love me some good ole' country music.

I proud to be a Texan and I'm proud to see Sarah Palin, a mother of five, come alongside of John McCain and shake things up a bit. As an added plus, she is from Alaska which is the most beautiful place on earth. I wouldn't be able to confirm that since the closest I've ever been to heaven is Estes Park, Colorado.

Now tell me, what did you think of Mrs. Sarah Palin? Be Nice!

Aug 29, 2008

Friday Fun

Back To School

I couldn't have wished for a better week. Love the schools, love the teachers and my kids are happy, which equals to Mama is happy! Ashley has made so many new friends at her new high school. God answered my prayers! There are only 6 girls in her freshman class and about 9 boys, I think. Everyone gets along great and they have welcomed her with open arms. She has already been invited to 3 parties and one is a sweet sixteen. She has upper classmen in her elective classes and they are simply outstanding girls and boys. I'm so excited for her! Even though we are making so many sacrifices to have her at this awesome school, it is worth it to see her smile and joy each day. Seth has made the transition to junior high great too! He loves the extra freedom they have and the different teachers. His class is small too, but he is kind of shy so that helps. Annie is Annie. She gets along with everyone and goes with the flow. She looks so stinkin' cute everyday in her little skirts and polos, I can't stop wondering what kind of trouble she is going to get into as a teen. I'm already covering that in prayer too! We are going to need it!

Back To Fellowship

This week I was able to have three much needed lunch dates with friends. I've also decided on a bible study to do starting late September. I wanted to possibly do something Beth Moore or Priscilla Shirer. I decided to go with both and Kay Arthur too! I'm doing Annointed, Transformed and Redeemed which is sure to be AWESOME!

Back to Alone Time

Even though most of my time alone is spent getting my home back in order from the summer months, it is such a nice feeling. I can catch up on some blogs I've missed, listen to " my kind" of music, and finally get to some quiet time to read and write. I haven't started working yet, but am ready for the opportunity to sub. My kids really like coming home to an orderly house and something planned for dinner. My family needed a schedule in such a big way! Home schooling for us was too much like a vacation that never ended. Now that the kids are in bed by 9:30p.m. each night, I feel like I should fess up to the fact that just one week ago, my kids were going to bed around 12:30 am and then sleeping until 11:00am the next morning. It was bad people. That just became the norm for us. When they now get up at 7:00 am, it doesn't take long for them to fall asleep at night. Thank you Jesus!

Back to Doctors

Actually this is not fun, but something I must share. Skip had a bad sinus infection this week and felt horrible. He went to see his doctor to get some relief and what he found was that his blood pressure continues to be a huge problem. It was so high yesterday-165 over 111. They changed his medicine and told him to take breaks and quit working so hard. I've done all I can to convince him of that, but I think fear is working better. Please continue to pray for my man.

*We are looking forward to a fun weekend! My niece and nephew are turning 3 and having a swim party in Victoria. I plan on staying at my sister's bay house for a couple of days if we don't run into too much weather with the tropical activity coming near. Hopefully my sweet husband will get to enjoy some fishing with my brother-in-law on Monday as well.

Hope your weekend is filled with lots of family fun time too!

***Skip's blood pressure today has been normal! I am so thankful (:

Aug 25, 2008

Mondays With Matt

Hey Guys! This is my first installment of Mondays with Matt Prokop, my nephew who is soon to have a role in HSM3. Basically, I will give you an update of what is going on with Matt and what awesome opportunities he has been given since being cast as Jimmie "The Rocket" Zara in what is going to hopefully be a Huge Hit at the Box Office in October. What am I saying? Of course it is going to be a huge hit!

You can catch some pics from Sunday's HSM3 Pep Rally here on Youtube. We heard Matt on Radio Disney and he did such a great job! He's a natural speaking in front of people. Matt is the one with the black Fedora hat and Mickey Mouse shirt.

Matt can also be found here encouraging people to get out and vote. If the video does not pop up immediately-In the middle of the page, under the curtain, you need to click "view more" until you see Matt Prokop. Pretty cool!

Since some of you may not know much about Matt, each week leading up to the big premiere I'll be giving you the inside scoop. I asked him some questions last week when the kids and I were hanging out with the family. Here is some of what what said:

Me: Hey Matt, do you mind if I interview you for my blog? There are like at least 5 people who read it each week.

Matt: Sure, no problem. (I guess he remembers that I let him watch Barney as much as he wanted when I babysat him when he was two-even way past his bed time. Payback time.

Me: Okay, I'll start with the obvious. What is your favorite color?

Matt: Green.

Me: Oh really, Skip's favorite color is green too.

Matt: Who is this interview about?

Me: Oh sorry. Next question, Who is your favorite actor and actress?

Matt: Actor... I would have to say Robert Downey Jr. He's awesome!

Me: Oh yeah, Skip really loves him too. Oh sorry, I forgot. Now, what about an actress?

Matt: Uh... I would have to say Emma Watson.

Me: The girl in Harry Potter?

Matt: Yes, she's hot!

Me: Not a good reason, but typical for you actor types. Okay Matt, what is your favorite thing to do when you are not acting or auditioning.

Matt: Sleep

Me: Are you serious?

Matt: Yes, and playing video games.

Me: What is your favorite game?

Matt: Halo.

Me: Never played it. I guess I should ask you a question about HSM3 now. What is your character's name and what is he like?

Matt: Jimmie and he's crazy!

Me: Like you?

Matt: Pretty much.

Me: Now how are you going to stay grounded throughout all the hype surrounding HSM3?

Matt: I'm thinking of drilling screws in my shoes.

Me: Huh? ....Oh, I get it. Hey, Matt.

Matt: Ya?

Me: What really bugs you?

Matt: Interviews.

Okay, that's it for the first interview. What do you think? Want to learn more? Stay tuned for next week's "Mondays with Matt". I will be covering Matt's worst nightmare and his favorite cast member from HSM3.

Matt and his cousin Annie, my sweet girl and his biggest fan!

Ready or Not, School Has Begun!!!

My babies are gone. After spending exactly 1 year and 3 months EVERYDAY with this three hooligans, I really thought today I would be dancing around the house and shouting the words to the Pointer Sisters' song "I'm So Excited". Instead I miss them already. No one to say "I'm hungry." "She won't get out of my room", or "He won't leave me alone." Instead it is quiet except for me, the computer and Regis and Kelly. Okay, you know my weakness, I'm a sucker for the morning talk show. Skip and I even met them 3 years ago when we went to New York and watched a taping of the show.

Anyway, I really am SO EXCITED that my kids are not only back in school, but in the best schools in Corpus. We will probably never go on another vacation, get a new car, or have the weekly manicure and pedicure, but I am confident that my kids are in loving hands. The schools are excellent and I know God led us to each one through prayer and guidance. I would have never thought things would have turned out this way a year ago, but when I saw the faces of previous teachers and staff who love me and my family today, I just about lost it because of God's goodness and faithfulness. Even through all the questions old friends have and the wonder of why we are back after leaving last year with such big hopes and dreams, God did not leave me alone. He brought us back better and stronger than ever. Maybe not on the outside, maybe not finacially, but definitely spiritually. God is our refuge and our strength, an ever present help in trouble(Psalm 46:1). If all we had to go through was just to bring us to utter reliance on Him, I am thankful for it all.

Hope all of you are having great first days! Please pray that Ashley, Seth and Annie have a safe first week, make a ton of friends, and that they glorify God in all they do.


Aug 21, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I am Thankful for PRAYER! It does not matter one bit what I am facing today or what I have done, God is there ready to listen. Prayer is my constant companion and it is so personal to me. What a pleasure to praise God and talk to Him one-on-one and at any time of the day!

I am Thankful for God's Word! It overwhelms me at times when I think of the vast wisdom put in the pages of our bibles. I wish I could say that I am digging in each and every day, but I am trying. Just thinking of the power and authority given throughout the stories and accounts never ceases to amaze me.

I am Thankful for Trials and Obstacles! I believe it is here that we truly find out what our character is and how big our God can come in and do a mighty work.

I am Thankful for Writers. To use a gift that God has given to share with others truly inspires me. There are so many wonderful authors out there I read that teach, encourage and entertain me daily. So many of these wonderful writers are in my side bar. You don't have to open a newspaper, check out a book from the library or even go to a bookstore anymore to find great works in print. You just need internet access!

I am Thankful for Forgiveness! This is hard for me when I have been hurt by someone or something someone has said, yet I expect to be forgiven when I am at fault. I wish that we all could be more like Jesus who forgives so freely! I am working on this one, and pray that if I have hurt any of you reading this in some way, you will also be willing to forgive.

What are you thankful for today? If you would like to join in, go to Sting My Heart and leave your link.

Aug 20, 2008

Things That Make Me Smile

God's provision at just the right time in a way that only He can accomplish.

The Heroes Series we are doing at church right now. I'm loving it!

Seth starts his official guitar lessons today!

Last night Skip brought me home this book I've been wanting to read. Thankfully there are no more Stephanie Meyer's books out there that I haven't read. I can get back to some non-fiction soon.

School starts in 5 days!!! I don't care if I am the only parent who is excited. If you haven't had a break in over a year from your kiddos, you might be excited with me.

Spending time with my sister who recently moved back to Texas after two years in LA. My nephew Matt is now 18 and on his own. This is Deacon, Debbie's sweet grandson. Can you imagine a more perfect welcome home gift to enjoy? He is just the most precious thing!

My kids getting the full scoop on HSM3 and a behind the scenes look at all the Disney stars. Guess who Matt was chatting with online while my kids were sitting in awe? Her initials are M.C. and she has a little well-known show on the Disney Channel.

My daddy with his great grandson Deacon.

Aug 17, 2008

Insomnia Leads to a Very Long Post

For about two weeks my husband has been dealing with insomnia, and tonight he has had the first night of good sleep. Praise God! However, here I am unable to sleep. Strange, but it gave me some time to read a favorite author of mine.

Elizabeth George was one of the first authors God used to speak clearly to my heart about my role as a wife and mother. I was able to do A Woman After God's Own Heart with my dear friend/mentor Liana many years ago, but the words and examples have stayed with me over the years. Skip and I celebrated our 16th anniversary earlier this summer, and I know that Elizabeth George's books made a huge impact on my actions and responses in my marriage.

Earlier tonight I was thinking about the fact that our family has a huge transition coming up soon. My kids will be entering back into private schools. We have had a year off home schooling, and I don't think any of us truly realize how much the freedoms we have experienced are about to change. I grabbed the book A Mom After God's Own Heart to look for some reassurance that whatever occurs this year, God needs to be my source of strength and my guide. I turned to Ch. 9 when I saw the title, "Try Your Best." It is filled with lots of practical advice on following God's instructions on being the best mom you can be.

I can't tell you how many people have told me that they would never put their child in school A where Ashley will be going. Their reasons are that it is just too hard, too structured, and too rigid. Ashley is a first born, she is smart, and if anyone in this family has natural academic ability it would be her. As much as I tend to worry and fret when people make comments like those above, I keep hearing God whisper, "Do you believe man or me? Do you believe I am going to be with her every step of the way? Have I ever turned my back on you or your family?" Of course when I pray and reflect on God's provision, I know that she will be fine. It's going to be hard and a huge adjustment, but with great prayer and perseverence, we can do it!

There was a lot of personal plans I had made this summer when thinking about all three children being back in school. Leading a bible study, volunteering weekly at the church, writing every day, lunches and coffee dates with friends and finally sending off some of those stories and articles to publishers. I could still do some of those things, but since private school is pretty pricey (very pricey), I will be doing some part time work to make ends meet which will totally cramp my personal time. Feeling a little pity party coming on tonight, I just so happened to read something in Chapter 9 (mentioned above) that brought me back to my main purposes that God has for me. After loving God with all my heart, soul and mind, I am to be supportive and encouraging to my husband and children. I need to focus on them before my friends, before my church and before my plans. God can still bring about my hopes and dreams, but I need to make sure my obedience is following his commands first and foremost.

With so many children beginning school soon, I would love for you to join me in prayer for our families. If you have children, grandchildren, friends with children, or just care about children in general, let's ask for special favor from the Lord on this school year. May we keep Christ involved in every detail of the school year, the time at home, the studying, and in the friendships. I also pray especially for you moms who tend to get the brunt of the responsibilities of school homework and activities. May God give you extra patience and ability to give it your best. I'm praying a lot for myself in this area, but know that I am also praying for you! Lastly, I pray for the teachers. What a job teachers have to shape and influence these young minds! May God give our children christian teachers who will love and encourage them in our place when we away.

Happy Monday! I'm off to bed hopefully...

Aug 12, 2008

Watch Out Kids-Matt's in Tigerbeat

Okay, I may or may not have screamed a little in Barnes and Noble when I first opened up the pages of Tigerbeat this month and saw the picture of my nephew Matt inside. HSM3 is opening in late October and the media is starting to hit. It's exciting for him, but really exciting to see my kids yell across the house that they just saw their cousin on the Disney Channel HSM3 movie trailer.

If you go here and click on the Now or Never video, you will see Matt towards the end of the song on 1:14 and 1:18. He is right next to Zac Efron with the red jersey and number 41. Pretty cool! I can't wait to see the actual movie because my sister was there during the entire filming in Utah and said it is going to be SO GOOD! Matt should be seen quite a bit as Jimmie "The Rocket" Zara.

We haven't seen Matt since February, but I am working on an interview for my blog when I see him in the near future. Any questions you would like to ask him about HSM3 or about himself, let me know. It will be my first interview at A Pink Carnation in Bloom. I'm so excited!

*Update: My sis called this morning and told me to go to because they just put up some pics of the cast. If you want to see more, go to the Wildcats and follow the characters until you get to Matt.

My Year Long Vacation is Finally Over

What am I doing? Going crazy!!! If I've become anything over the last year of home schooling, moving twice, and transitioning, it is LAZY. I don't mean I don't clean, cook, love the husband, go to church, socialize with friends, and play with the kids. What I'm trying to say is that I have basically had NO SCHEDULE WHATSOEVER! It's been fun, but it is so not me. I need a wakeup time, a bedtime, and a list of things to do and accomplish. With home schooling, I was the complete opposite.

Within the last week, I enjoyed a few days out of town with family, hit a water park, rode a giant Ferris wheel, and then came home in utter PANIC MODE. Breathe Susie, Breathe. I have to find 3 birth certificates for my kids, 3 shot records, finish a substitute teaching application(I think I'm going back to work part-time-Arghhhhhh!), and shop for my kids, who not a single one has a pair of tennis shoes, let alone anything besides shorts and t-shirts that fit. Home schooling was a barefoot, casual dress atmosphere type of environment. Oh, and did I mention I have a huge pile of school forms to fill out in one day, and no earthly idea which box the necessary forms (birth certificates, etc.) are in to turn in by Wednesday. Okay, Breathe AGAIN.

I'm really fine, but during all this chaos, my sweet 14 year old talked me into reading book 1 of the Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer. I thought, "Why not?" I rarely read fiction and it will give me something to do while we traveled in the car last week. Besides, this is a "teen" type book and I probably won't even like it. BIG MISTAKE! Susie does not do well with fiction. I don't do well because (like my daughter) I become totally obsessed. Especially when it has to do with a love story and lovable characters. I have read three books of this stinkin' series in less than a week. Not good when you have tons of important things to accomplish. Oh well, at least I'm connecting with my daughter's interests, and at least there is only one more book in the series and I'll be done.

This is my silly life as of now, and hopefully I will get to writing something meaningful soon. Can you imagine the stories if I start subbing? Also, I need a new bible study to start. Have any good ideas? I've done just about everything Beth Moore, but I'm willing to continue if anyone has done her new "Stepping Up" and wants to share info. Hope everyone is well and enjoying the last days of summer. As for me, the vacation is officially over.

Aug 5, 2008

40 is THE YEAR

I'm not sure why it's this year and not 37, 38, or even 39, but the time finally arrived. I glanced down at the book I was reading a few months ago, and suddenly the words were blurry. I thought maybe there was something in my eye. I pushed the book back a little further and I could see. What? I have always had 20/20 vision, and I took pride in the fact that my eyes were perfect. Now, what?

It was a sad day as I walked into Dollar Tree and bought my first pair of reading glasses. Nothing special, no loud speaker announcing my old age parade. I slowly walked up to the counter and gently laid down my aid on the counter. The teen at the register didn't even question who they were for? What? Did he actually think they were for me? How dare he!

This experience was really EYE-opening. What else is this lovely phenomenon called old age going to bring? My kids already tell me, "Mom, pay attention. You're not listening." Actually, I think I just can't hear as well anymore. Scary, yet at the same time I may find something I actually do like in this whole natural aging process.
*With age comes wisdom. At least that is what my older friends tell me.
*Realization of what's important in life is also a benefit. You don't sweat the small stuff as much, and you invest in things that matter like faith, family and friends.
*You don't care what others think. When I say this, I think of Skip's 90 something yr. old grandmother "Nonnie" who will tell it like it is. One time she told Skip "You're putting on some weight, aren't you?" I died laughing inside. He was, and she called him on it.
*You are getting closer to Heaven. I want to know God more and do more for Him in my actions and my love for others knowing my time on Earth is passing faster the older we get.
*You have an excuse for the little lines appearing around your eyes. It's natural, I'm forty now. In your 30's it's called premature aging.
I know reading glasses are just the start for me, but I'm praying that in time the passing years will be a blessing. I hope to see my kids mature into adulthood, see the choices our kids make in life, see the families they will create, and see the plan God has for them as well as for me and my husband in the coming years. Will it be the best years of my life? I think so, as long as I'm LOOKING with my eyes fixed on Christ and His Vision for what's lies ahead.

For your enjoyment, I thought I'd add music to this post. Skip did this song at church a couple of weeks ago. So fitting, don't you think?