Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Happy Birthday Coleman!

Coleman's birthday was last week too! His birthday is on the 23rd and Ellerie's is on the 24th. So needless to say, there was a lot of baking going on around here, and that means lots of yummy, buttercream icing... mmmmmmm!

He had a bowling party last Saturday which was so much fun. For some reason, we ended up doing the Extreme Bowling, with the black lights and disco balls. I was a little nervous at first but the kids all seemed to like it. It was a fun afternoon celebrating with close friends and family.

I can't believe he's 7 years old!!!

Another Lightning Cake...

The birthday boy...

Brianna, Hunter, Coleman & Emmie

Presents from friends...

Notice all the 'glowing' going on?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


Our church has been going through a sermon series on the Sovereignty Psalms once a month. A couple of weeks ago we studied the text of Psalm 96. This passage focuses on the call (our call) to worship and several reasons that support this call.

One of the reasons we are called to worship the LORD is because of His glory.
“So the Psalmist’s concern is that we would ascribe, or give or attribute, glory to the LORD. Glorify Him – this is what the Psalmist is telling us to do. So how do we do this? We honor him – we make him look excellent to this world! How many of us got up this morning and went about the grind of Sunday morning with zero joy, zero gladness, zero rejoicing, zero honor to the LORD?”

This point hit home with me. How am I ascribing glory to the Lord with my life? Is my life characterized by joy? How would my children or husband answer this question? I don’t often serve joyfully in the ‘everydayness’ of life – for me, it’s easy to get caught up in trying just to ‘get it all done’. I want to serve with joy – I do desire that – and now I am challenged to try and do that.

I have found that it begins with me getting into the Word. While I may not have much time to read alone, by myself, in the quiet – I can read a little. I can focus on a verse or two as I go throughout the day, remembering why I do what I do, remembering that God has called me to be a Wife and a Mother – for His glory.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Happy First Birthday!

I can't believe little Ellerie is 1 already!? It seems like yesterday that she was born. She has been such a joy to our entire family this past year and we are thankful for this special blessing. She is so sweet-natured and content - She loves it when her siblings make her laugh - She likes to 'talk' on the phone and pull stuff out of the trash!
Ellerie - we love you sweet little girl! Happy Birthday!!
Her first cake...

Excitedly awaiting the cake...


Mmmmmmm good!


Early Bird...

Someone found the remains of a cupcake in the trash can and decided to celebrate her birthday a little early! Not much left of that cupcake now!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Sweet friends...

Today I got together with several sweet friends (Kim, Sophia, Dusty & Kelly) for a playdate with all of our kids. We also got to celebrate my birthday with some yummy cake! Actually we had about 4 cakes there and they were ALL yummy! (Yes, I had to sample all of them).

(We missed you Lea Ann - thank you for the gift!)

My kids love to go and play with all of their friends - and they play ... and play ... and play! It's nice because they are so worn out when we get home that everyone lays down for a bit to rest, which means rest for Mom, or at least a chance to work while it's quiet! Thanks Kim for opening your home to all of us!

The Mommas also have a chance to talk and fellowship while the kids are playing because the sweet older girls help watch all the little ones for us! I am thankful for these friends and the encouragement they are to me - they are definitely evidences of grace in my life! Thank you, sweet friends!

Emma helping Ellerie and Calvin with lunch

Having a picnic.

Sweet gifts!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Conference Update

I talked with Brian tonight and he was giddy with excitement about his day. Many of you who know us know that one of Brian's modern-day heroes is John Piper (along with many other young, Reformed men I'm sure). Some people jokingly refer to Brian as one of John Piper's disciples ... well, that is a bit extreme ... but you get the idea.

He shared with me tonight that he saw John Piper as he was getting on the escalator. He was right behind him and decided to say something...

Brian: John Piper! Thank God for you!

(They then shake hands).

Brian: Me shaking your hand is like you shaking the hand of Jonathan Edwards.

John Piper: I'd probably pass out...

Brian: Exactly!

I am happy to say that Brian didn't pass out and embarrass himself ... but let's just say that was icing on the cake!

The Gospel

This week Brian has the incredible opportunity to participate in the Together for the Gospel conference. Although it is hard for Daddy to be away for several days, especially after last week, I am so thankful that he has been blessed with this privilege. My prayer is that he will be encouraged and refreshed and challenged through the preaching of the Word!

Laurie wrote a post about those of us who are "Apart for the Gospel" this week and I have been encouraged by her words. During this past year God has revealed to me the importance of serving Brian by freeing him up for ministry and doing what I can to support his calling. So I can joyfully handle the baths, the dosing of medicine, the discipline and everything else that comes up so that Brian can experience the 'Togetherness' of all those who have come together to share in the glory of the Gospel. I know that the impact of this week will be felt not only by us, but by those we minister to each week.

Looking forward to hearing all about it ...

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

What's Going (On) Around Here...

Well, I found out on Sunday that I had strep throat again (along with a sinus infection). So maybe my run time could have been a little faster on Saturday? Oh well - maybe next year. Like last time, this infection really wiped me out and had me down for the count.

Then on Monday I took Emmie to the Dr. because she had a tiny fever on Saturday night (really low-grade and gone all on Sunday) just to make sure she was fine. Sure enough, she had strep. Then Brian informed me that his work had to send him out of town for 2 days on an emergency trip.

O.K. I tried to make the best of it ... but I was still pretty out of it. Tuesday, I felt a little better and then Calvin had a little fever like Emmie's for just a few hours in the afternoon but then it was gone. Today I decided to take him in just to make sure ...

sure enough ... positive for strep. (The throat culture for him is a different blog post!) When they told me he was positive, I told them I would probably be back by Friday because I had caught the baby with his sippy cup yesterday while he was resting. They decided to check her while we were there today ... and she was positive too.

I asked them to go ahead and check Coleman while we were there ... and ... you guessed it - he has it too! So now we all have 'strap' (that's what Emmie calls it) except for Dad, who finally made it back home tonight. So since I got to take everyone for the throat swabs, I'll let him give the next few doses of medicine!

The good news is that all of the kids feel pretty good and we will no longer be contagious in 24 hours!

Saturday, April 05, 2008

And We're Done!

Not the most attractive picture but black and white made it look a little bit better. I had on no makeup except mascara and we were running a little behind schedule. And we only took 1 picture ... so there you have it. They took professional ones at the race, but no telling what those will look like since it was misty and raining most of the time.

Well, I met both of my goals. I ran the entire race without stopping and my time was under 1:10. I had 1:07:44 so we'll round down and go with 1:07. That actually put me at a 10:53 mile pace, which is under 11 minutes, even though just barely. They posted other interesting facts on the internet about the racers. I was in about the 12,400th place, which isn't too bad when around 30,000 were in it. That means I did better than 50 % of the people right? It's all about perspective!

Brian did really good and made it in under an hour, around 58 minutes. He was around the 7,500th place or something. It was a fun morning. The weather was misty and raining but I love to run in the rain and that made it much cooler, which is a good thing!

Here's what the winner of the race, Abdi Abdirahman, had to say about the race, “I like this course,” said Abdi. “It’s a flat course, very fast. I’d like to come back and race it again.”

I'd just like to say to Abdi - the course IS flat but it's not the course that's fast - it's YOU that's fast!

The worst part of the day was using the Porta Potty before the race. Do you know you can't flush those things? Eeeew! I think that was my first Porta Potty. Ugh. But I needed to go before I ran since it took us about 30 minutes to get to downtown for the race because I didn't want to experience the Mommy bladder during the race (see the post about the race on November 16).

Brian stayed with me for a bit then headed on to the finish. I was proud of myself as I passed a few people, I mean, who cares if they were 90-year old ladies with walkers? I passed them. And then these little boys that looked like they were 10-years old were passing me! Oh well, pride can be humbled so easily, right?

At least I didn't fall and become the Mary Decker of Chester! (That's for you Lurker!)

Thank you guys for all of your encouragement! Now I am going to rest on the couch and possibly indulge in some birthday cake!

Friday, April 04, 2008

Race Day

Well, tomorrow is the BIG race day. The weather is looking like it might rain, but I actually love to run in the rain. But if it rains, the kids will be staying home and not meeting us at the finish! :(

Brian has been saying all along that he wants to stay with me during the race, but I really want him to run his own race and beat his time from last year. Plus if he stays with me, I may feel pressure to run his faster pace and might pass out by mile 3 or 4. So I have been begging him to run his faster race and I'll just bring up the rear! (We'll see what he does but I know deep down he'd love to beat his time from last year, who wouldn't?)

I am excited about tomorrow and a little nervous. I am glad we ran 6 miles 2 weeks ago so I know mentally that I can actually run 6 miles so I am not too nervous about that. I am a little nervous about doing something crazy like bumping into someone and falling down, or making someone else fall down, or needing to spit (I've had some sinus drainage this week, I know - too much info) but the race etiquette says you can spit (or throw up?) during the race, just move to the side before you do so. But what if I accidentally spit on someone? Anyway ... I'll try to keep it all together.

I'll let you know how it goes!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Running Update

Well, the day of the 10-K is almost here! I am so excited! It is crazy to think back to October when I couldn't even run halfway down my street without getting a major cramp in my side and having to stop. All of this hard work has been rewarding. Running has helped me be more disciplined as well as to lose a few pounds.

But running isn't an easy sport. I found that the breathing came pretty easy and I don't usually get too sore - what's hard is the mental side of it. I know that I can run 5 miles and that I have already run 6 miles once, but it is still hard the first 1-2 miles. I always think "this is crazy - why am I doing this?" It seems that I can never get into a good groove until I have gone a couple of miles. But I know that if I just push through the funkiness, I will feel good in the end.

Despite the hard starts, it's nice to have that time alone listening to music on my IPOD. Some of my favorite music is David Crowder Band, mostly his fast songs. (Although I do need to find some more songs because I keep hearing the same old music...)

Brian has been training right along with me each week, although we run on different days so someone is at home with the kids. When my parents were in town a couple of weeks ago, we were able to run together on those mornings and that was fun. I could tell my pace was a little slower than Brian's (I like to pace myself to make sure I don't run out of steam) but he stayed with me the entire time. We also did our 6-mile run together a week and a half ago. It's nice to know going into the race that I can do 6 miles, that makes the mental aspect much easier.

I have a couple goals for Saturday. One is to do the entire race without stopping. The second is to do the race in 1:10 or better. I have been doing about an 11-minute mile on my neighborhood (hilly) route and about a 10-minute mile on the flatter route. So I hope to maintain that same pace on Saturday. We will see how it goes. (I know that is a slow time compared to some people, but considering I had an almost 15-minute mile pace back in January, I think I've come a long way)!

I'll let you know how it goes!