Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Long Awaited Update=)

Ok, so it's been a while. So here's a few pics from this past month, well, this first one is actually from February...it was hiding on my camera, but it makes me laugh every time I see it.

Breakfast is definitely her favorite meal of the day...even with Mama mixing smushed veggies in with her oatmeal. HAHA!

So March started out this month looking like this...March 1st, no joke:

Savannah would have nothing to do with the snow. Since it's GA, it was really white slush which stuck to her boots and made walking not so much fun, but we had to get at least one picture!

No joke, the very next weekend--six days later--we were at the park! The Swift Cantrell Park on Old 41 is amazing! It's like the best little kid's playground I've ever seen.

Oh, and yes, she's borrowed her first boyfriend's jacket, such a sly dog she is=) Haha! Actually, it was a little cooler than I had anticipated, and Nanette Gootee was meeting me at the park with Ronan, so Savannah bummed a jacket. But it really does suit her, don't you think?

Climbing of course....

Sliding is her favorite...I think...

It might actually be climbing these tiny steps. If only I could install a set of these in my house!

And lovin' her first car...she's such a ham=)
And last but not least, the following picture is for the pure viewing pleasure of my sister only. You see, she is a nut about me being pregnant. She was here in GA with me for all of Savannah's pregnancy, and she is dying inside not being able to watch me blow up like a balloon with this second one. So, per her request, I have taken my first pregnant photo. I truly do not have one photo like this with Savannah, but for my sister, whom I love so dearly, I will put aside my pride and embarrassment and post this 16-week photo.

By the way, all my NYC gals, this is the outfit I have decided to wear to Broadway. No one was being of much help, and it's suppose to be a little chilly in the evenings, so this is as good as it gets for me. Thanks to my marvelous mother, I will have a little bling and some fancy pink heels to add to the wardrobe, but this is it. Please don't make me look too underdressed compared to the rest of you=)

Well, that's the March update. More to come I'm sure, especially with Easter around the corner. OH! You should see Savannah's Easter dress!!! Can't wait! PLUS, we find out if this new little one is a boy or a girl on April 24th, so keep your eyes peeled=) To vote on what you think it is, visit my mom's blog and let me know. As for Joey, he turns in his very first paper tomorrow evening, and he's nervous as all get out. Say a little prayer for his nerves, but I know he will do just fine. Love you all!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Happy Birthday to Me!

So, 29 years ago, my mom went into labor around 9am, and I entered this world around 9:30pm, and every year since, I have lived a life that most children around the world probably only dream of living--simple, priviledged, and full of love. (And if you don't believe that you too have lived a priviledged life here in the USofA, you really should check into how the majority of people on planet earth live their lives--we are definitely priviledged, and a little wasteful.)

But God put all of us here for a reason "for such a time as this," and I can't help on this day but be grateful. I've taken a little flashback through my life in song today, just random songs on different radio stations, but there were two that got me all choked up a little.

The first was Mylie Cyrus' new song, "The Climb." Now, whether you are a fan of pop, rock, country, rap, heavy metal, etc. I believe that all talent is God-given talent and can be used for His glory. This song, hit a note for me. Maybe it's because she's so young and been in the public eye so much for what people would call "questionable decisions" or mistakes. But don't we all make those? She just has to do it in front of the whole world...I digress. Maybe the song hit a chord with me because at such a young age, she has written (or at least sings with passion) a song about one of the dearest revelations in my life: Life's not about the mountains, you face; it's about the climb. My church puts it this way: Life's not about your destination; it's about the journey you take to get there.

I love the journey God has me on, climbing and all. I have spent a good part of my life wishing I could be of great an influence as Billy Graham, Beth Moore, Abraham Lincoln, and others. People who changed the world for God or for good or for both with their influence. That's always who the little person inside of me wants to be, but isn't the grass always greener on the other side of the fence? God has taught me that the sphere of influence I have today may not be the whole world, but it's my family and friends and people He causes me to cross paths with. The influence I have in just those relationships can cause a ripple effect that influences people I will never meet over generations I will never see. The hard part for most of us not called to what the world labels as "great and glorious" things is just sticking to the path you've been given and being faithful to follow His voice as it leads. So simple, yet so difficult, yet so fulfilling.

And that brings me to the second song that got me all choked up today: "In Color" by Jamey Johnson...see I told you I listened to a wide range=) This song made me think of all the wonderful memories and journies and stories I have from this life already! I am an avid photo collector and filer. I can't wait for the day when my grandkids sit around me, and I can pull out any photo album, carefully labeled with pictures all in chronological order and be able to tell them story after story of my life...at least from my middle school years on=) Now, today our photographs are in color, but I think the point of the song is that no photograph really does life justice. You only get a glimpse. It means nothing without the story, without the people, without the context, without that moment in time. And when I think of all the words I've written here and in journals, I think of how I try so hard to express what this life God has given me means to me, so that others will want what I have too.

I'm not an evangelist. I choke up making announcements in front of my group of Bible Study ladies, but on the inside, on paper--in black and white--I'm screaming out loud, "If only you could live my life in color! Really live it! It doesn't look like much, but I have a purpose. I have meaning. I am a success story in my God's eyes!" Who in this world doesn't want those things? Who in this life doesn't search for them? You don't have to be the next President of the US or the next great preacher of a revival. You just have to know Who made this life worth living. And I mean REALLY know Him. And to do that....it takes a lifetime.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Where Have I Been? Well...

Ok, so my cousin totally calls me out today, and is like, "So what's been up with you and blogging? We haven't heard from you lately?" So here's my answer...

Mid January--began feeling nauseous around the clock; the fatigue of this pregnancy is so bad, I'm doing good to get dressed every day....

This continues for all of January...hence only having 5 pictures of Savannah to Snapfish to people...

February 1st rolls around, we're all feeling pretty good, weather is nice, Savannah's photo shoot is great, but I'm focused on heading out of town the next week for 10 days and all the preparations that go into packing your child up to stay at someone else's home for a week, PLUS I was avoiding other children and activities at all cost to keep her from getting sick...

Friday before we leave, she still comes down with a cough....

Mid-February we are gone for 10 days to San Antonio, TX, Long Beach, CA, and back again. In the process, both Joey and I get very, very, ill, and by the time we all three get off the plane back in the ATL, we are all deathly ill with something...I will spare you the details....

The rest of February is spent decompressing from a not so relaxing vacation and trying to get us all well...

Savannah's cough still never really clears up, the fever begins, the coughing through the night, so it's back to the doctor by the first of March....

In the meantime, over our "vacation" I have also developed some strange skin rash/hives/eczema thing, so the next four weeks from End-February to present, between myself, Savannah, and Joey, I have been to a doctor's office for an appointment at least twice a week...NO LIE...talk about your copays!....

So, the past two weeks consisted of Savannah being diagnosed with a head cold, croup, starting ear infection, and bronchitis--all at once....where for, she then preceded to have an allergic reaction breaking out in hives all over her precious body, which entailed another doctor's visit, per the nurse's request, only to find out that hives are basically harmless, a little uncomfortable, and I just need to watch to see what causes them again....

All of my dermatologist visits result in one doctor saying I have eczema, prescribing a greasy ointment that heals me temporarily, only to return for a check-up to have another doctor tell me it's not exactly eczema, but hives...every time I scratch anywhere, I break out in massive splotches of hives....yes, I'm sooooo happy, and comfortable for that matter.....personally, I think I'm allergic to this pregnancy...it IS possible! I've checked it out online....

Joey develops shingles, had to quarantine himself for four days, started school yesterday, and that about brings us up to date. Oh, yeah, and Savannah breaks out in hives again--I think she's allergic to strawberries. Whew! OUT OF BREATH!

So as you can see, there are a million good reasons why I haven't bored you with the details of my life recently. Not to mention, we live in a poorly built, 5-year old house that is in need of constant repair and maintenance, especially the lawn. We are also trying to get ready for baby number two by redecorating rooms upstairs to move Savannah around. We will be married 8 years this May, so there is an endless supply of "things" that need replacing around the house--mattress, washing machine, we need more storage for kid things, etc. PLUS, did I mention Joey has gone back to school?

So I find myself these days holing up in my house that I love, trying to keep everything functioning on somewhat of a normal level while still making sure there are groceries in the pantry, meals on the table, clean clothes to wear, space on the floors to walk on, and most importantly a happy little girl who loves to play outside and have 110% of my attention and doing whatever it takes to make sure my husband's life isn't totally over the edge and completely stressed out.

So, that's where I have been, that's what I have been doing. I may sound stressed, but I'm really at a good place right now. Just no time for blogging. I'll try, but no promises. I love you all. Thanks for being concerned and wondering where the heck I have been. Means a lot=) Hopefully, I will be posting sooner, rather than later, so it won't take you an hour to get through the next post! BAHAHAHA! Yeah right=) !!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Where I Am

Well, it's been a little while since I shared some of what has been on my heart. My first impulse is always to come and blog everything I'm thinking and feeling because I LOVE to write, but God has been teaching me that I must first seek Him and His counsel before I spout everything off to the world for their opinion, hence why I've been a little quiet.

With that being said, I thought I'd share a verse that my Bible study has me meditating on this week:
Psalm 27:13-14 "I would have despaired unless I had believed that I WOULD see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord." (emphasis mine)

*You know how at different times in your life, God emphasizes different lessons, looking back, they're really attributes, about Himself? Well, my lesson for the past 9 months has been and continues to be: God is a good God. Now, growing up in a Christian home, this may sound like a silly lesson to have to learn, but having somewhat of a legalistic church upbringing, I think somewhere along the way, I stopped believing God was inately good, and that if I did all the right things, He would be good to me in return. This is not true. God's character, I'm learning...a little painfully, is by nature and definition, good.

I love this verse because it gives promise that we will experience this inate goodness of God here on earth, in the land of the living, not just in heaven. We don't have to earn it, and it isn't just an eternity-only reality. It's a here and now truth, but as the verse continues, we sometimes must wait for the reality of this truth. God's timing is not our timing, and His ways are not our ways, but our hearts should "take courage," "wait," and "believe" that God is good. I would despair if I did not believe that I could see the goodness of God in this land of the living!

And to be honest, life is not all roses right now...many thorns for various reasons keep pricking, but God is still good--that never changes. So when I look past my wounds and allow God to heal me, I not only see His goodness in trying times and difficult circumstances, I feel His goodness toward me. It's a comfort and a hope that when fully embraced--fully, deeply believed--makes life bearable, and even enjoyable when the world around you just doesn't seem to have a drop of goodness left in it.

I don't know how long God is going to have to keep orchestrating circumstances in my life to help me understand, embrace, and accept this attribute of Himself. It may take me years before my soul truly believes this truth, but I am thankful that whether I honestly, deeply believe this truth or not that IT'S STILL TRUTH. God is good.

What attribute about Himself has God been teaching you lately?

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Photo Shoot of Fun=)

Ok, so I finally got my CD from Savannah's photo shoot, so here's some info on a few of my favorite shots:

Of course, riding down the hill in the wagon was Joey's idea, and she couldn't get enough of it!

Yes, Savannah is a VERY smiley child, but this shot is what I see most often...a watchful gazy on the world wrapped with so many questions and little attidtude=)
So sure of herself...always...standing on top of the wagon=)
And this is what we do to everything and anything all day long...Climb, Climb, Climb!
This shot pretty much captures how she approaches life in general...no fear and LOTS of fun!
And when we lose our balance...this is the inevitable face=) So funny!
And this is probably my favorite if all...my sweet baby girl=)
For more information about the photographer and more pictures...see my last post=)