I hope everyone has a very happy and safe 2008! Adam, the girls and I are heading to Dallas today for the Cotton Bowl. Go Razorbacks!!! We are meeting MiMi and PaPa and the girls and I are going back to spend some time with them so I probably won't post very often. So until then...
We had a very nice Christmas at my Mom and Dad's. I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas as well. Shelby set out Reindeer food, made Chocolate Chip cookies for Santa and even wrote him a note. To her surprise, Santa wrote back! Bethany didn't know what all the fuss was about so she was just enjoyed watching Shelby and looking cute! I'm very excited to say that Adam got me a new camera!!! It's so much better than the one I had so now I can post better pics! My Mom and I fixed a huge meal complete with all the trimmings. We all enjoyed just being together and watching the girls in their excitement.
The preschool choir at church proudly presented Away in a Manger yesterday at church. It was absolutely the sweetest thing I ever saw! Shelby did wonderfully! She actually held the microphone and sang where we all could hear. She was so proud of herself as were her parents!
Ohhhhh, I think I'm getting a cold. My head feels all stopped up. My nose is runny but stuffy (I've always wondered how that could happen all at once!) I'm tired. I think it's the weather. One minute it's in the 70's, the next it's 40 degrees. We've still got a few more gifts to get. I think we'll do that tomorrow. I love shopping and I must say I'm pretty good at finding good deals. Sunday morning Shelby's Sunday School class will be doing a Christmas musical. I just know I'm going to cry. Shelby's going to play Mary and will be singing Away in a Manger with Joseph. My girls just make me beam with pride. I think I'll just pack some Kleenex along with my camera...
I woke up with a horrible headache this morning. I attribute it to yet another night of interrupted sleep! I love my Beth but she has GOT to learn to sleep through the night! I know each child is different and I don't want to start comparing my children, but Shelby was sleeping through the night at 3 months! Well, I guess Beth will start in her own time. I had planned that I was going to make Chicken Enchiladas for lunch today. I just felt so terrible. I called Adam and asked him to pick up something for us for lunch. He gladly did so and he also took off a half a day just to take care of the girls so I could get some rest! Isn't he a sweetie?! I'm feeling better now. Adam is making homemade Chicken Noodle Soup for supper per Shelby's request. She thought her mama needed some homemade soup. My family is so sweet!
Wow! I just have to say that God is AMAZING!!! I have been praying that God would open my eyes and open my heart to what He has in store for me. He did today and I must say it is the BEST feeling ever! When this happens, it reminds me of how much God loves and cares for me. It makes me want to experience this joy over and over again. I have been struggling with the issue of forgiveness. I know it is the right thing to do but not always the easiest, especially when you feel justified in your anger. Anger and an unwillingness to not forgive not only leads to resentment, it also will harden your heart and leave you unreceptive to God's will. Proverbs 4:23 says, "Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." Satan throws out anger and resentment and it's easy to take the bait, but Jesus constantly forgives us when we ask Him. There is nothing that has or could ever happen to me that Jesus has not experienced and forgiven me for. Therefore, who am I not to share God's loving spirit and forgive others?
Shelby and her preschool class sang in the Carol of Lights at Henderson Tuesday night. It was a chilly thirty-something degrees outside. The kids sang Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Jingle Bells and We Wish You a Merry Christmas. Shelby sang really loud because I could actually hear her over the other kids singing! My camera doesn't take very good pictures in the dark so unfortunately I don't have many good ones.
Friday night we went to a place for kids in Hot Springs called Little Bitty City. Shelby played in the workout room and the theater. They were having a concert featuring Brian and Terri Kinder. They are so talented! They definitely have the magic touch with the kiddos. They were so fun and energetic. Shelby LOVED them! We all had such a good time! Shelby's favorite song was the Blinking Lights song. You can hear them on www.kindersongs.com.
Last night was a particularly hard night with Beth. I have a strong feeling some toothies might be trying to make their grand appearance. I woke up to fussiness and crying several times last night. I was VERY tired this morning. So tired that I did not want to get out of bed and come to church. I'm so glad I did though. The message spoken today seemed to be aimed at ME. Don't you just love when that happens? I'd like to share a few points with you. The lesson was taken from the book of Luke, Chapter 9 verses 13-17. It's the passage where Jesus takes the five loaves of bread and two fish, gives thanks to God and breaks it. Before the apostles' and the hungry crowds' eyes, God provided an abundance of food for the people. So much that there were twelve basketfuls of leftovers! There are a few things that can take away or lessen your focus from God: physical fatigue, other people, and place or position. But to keep your focus on God you have to: expect the unexpected (be willing and open to do what God expects you to do at the time He expects you to do it--no matter how you feel), stop making excuses, wait on and obey God's instructions (as the apostles did), watch Him work (as the apostles witnessed Jesus feed the multitude of people with so little), experience the maximum return (apostles picked up TWELVE baskets of leftovers). The speaker today urged us to pick up our baskets of thankfulness just as the apostles picked up the baskets of leftover food. We have so much to be thankful for and need to be aware of all that God has so graciously blessed us with! I don't mean to sound "preachy" but this just struck a chord in my heart and it was just what I needed to hear in this busy stage of my life when my focus can stray in so MANY different directions. God needs to be first and everything else will fall into place.
We had a very nice (and chilly) Thanksgiving at Aunt Vinita's and Uncle Scott's. Several peaple that we haven't seen in a few years were there and we very much enjoyed visiting with them! Lots of yummy food and laughter was shared. It even snowed which excited Shelby tremendously! It was so good to see everyone. We had such a nice tiem!
I've got a funny story to tell ya. Cindy, my mother-in-law, called today to see if Shelby had received the present she had ordered and mailed to her for her birthday. I said we had not gotten it yet but we did get the package for me that she had previously instructed me NOT to look in. She said it was not to be opened until Christmas. I wanted to peek but didn't! Anyway, in the course of our conversation, she told me she was going to hang up and check on the status of Shelby's package and then call me back. She checked and called back. She proceeded to tell me the customer service person she talked to said that the birthday package went out the same day as the pendant. I said, "The what?" (I thought I had understood her but wanted to see if she would say it again!) She said, "The pendant!" Then she realized she had given the surprise away and wanted me to go ahead and open the present. To my surprise it was this beautiful peas in a pod necklace! So even though you're so silly and gave the surprise away, thank you Cindy! I LOVE it!!!
Shelby had her fifth birthday party at Gymnastics Plus yesterday! She and her friends had a blast stretching, playing Duck, Duck, Goose, jumping on the trampoline, climbing rope and doing an obstacle course. There was lots of yummy cake and lemonade! Her cake had a picture of her dressed up in her cowgirl outfit from Halloween. Her sweet little friends gave her many nice gifts! We're so glad they joined us to celebrate Shelby's special day!
We tickled Bethany's taste buds today--with SQUASH! I think she liked it! So much so that she eagerly leaned in a little too far and managed to get some on her nose! Shelby even got in on the action and helped me feed her. YUM! YUM!
Today we had a really nice afternoon with the girls. We took them to the park and had a picnic. It was perfect weather-sunny and in the 70's. Shelby played and Adam and I even played with her. It was so much fun. Sometimes it's really nice just to let loose and be a kid again...especially with your children. We also took some pics. of the girls for our Christmas cards. That's coming up you know. It will be here before you know it! I would love to say that I have ALL my shopping done, but unfortunately I don't. :( Maybe I can tackle that one pretty soon.
I am very excited about learning how to make hair bows! I went online several days ago and purchased an e-book on how to make boutique-style hair bows. I went today to pick out some ribbon. I thought I'd do a little orange so the girls could be festive for the fall. I attempted to make my first bows and they didn't turn out quite like I expected. It was fun but I did acquire a painful burn as I was hot gluing the knots to the middle of my bows! Did you know you can prevent fraying from ribbon ends by slightly melting them with a lighter? You can see they need a little more work, but as they say: practice makes perfect! I think now I'll move on to some Christmas bows...
Shelby and Bethany and I enjoyed a fun afternoon Halloween party at school yesterday. There were lots of yummy goodies (check out the cute witch cupcakes one of the moms made) and LOTS of candy! The kids even decorated their own shirts for the occasion!
Last night we had a fun time of trick-or-treating. It was a bit warm. Bethany could not wear her costume for very long because it was so hot outside. It was not the typical Halloween weather. We went trick-or-treating at one of our universities. All the social clubs and organizations sat up booths and handed out candy to the kiddos. The college students got into it and dressed up as well. There was some pretty comical characters! It was chaotic to say the least. There were A LOT of people! We didn't get to all of the booths because it was so crowded. We decided to go out to my Mom and Dad's where they had special Halloween treats for the girls. We also trick-or-treated at our family's house next door. The girls were pooped at the end of the evening but they still looked cute!
I'm sure most of you have heard of baby signing and even practiced it. I have heard of it but have never given it much thought until I ran across this channel (Dish Network channel 9408) that has a program called Baby Signing Time. It was SO interesting! I've got it set to my DVR to record all the shows. I think when Beth gets a little older we will do this. I did not do this with Shelby but she was watching the program this morning with me and she was doing the signs too. It's a cute little show if you are interested. I'll let you know our progress when Beth and I begin!
Okay...my computer has been acting up or I would have posted a lot sooner. Amanda and Charley are both fine. It turns out she had a bad migraine. Thank you for your prayers! GOD IS GOOD!!! Maybe Amanda will post something on her blog to give us more details.
Amanda went to her OB doc. today because she is starting to feel weak and she is having blurred vision. The doctor sent her to the ER for a CT scan. I don't know much more than this except that she and Charley need your prayers. I'll update you as soon as I know something.