Monday, April 30, 2012

Meal Planning Monday

Sunday: Leftover Santa Fe Chicken

Monday: Grilled chicken and zucchini

Tuesday: Leftover Spaghetti from the freezer

Wednesday: Leftover grilled chicken

Thursday: Carryout from Magnolia Cafe

Friday: American Diabetes Gala (thanks, David!)

Saturday: Kristin's Birthday Party

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I love that between 15 and 20 people were baptized at our church Sunday evening.  I loved hearing their stories of learning to love Jesus and how He has and is continuing to pursue them relentlessly!

I love that the CIA is growing and growing on my campus!  Teachers were meeting free this morning, so I got to start my day with about 45 middle schoolers listening to them study God's Word.  (Teachers aren't allowed to talk at religious meetings on campus, but we can attend...that's Texas).  I also got to hold one of the leader's super cuddly 10 month old who is the happiest teether I've ever met.  I may have just started today's STAAR testing with baby drool on my shoulder.  Love it!

I'm loving this weather!  It's been perfect since Saturday.  I think the temps and the humidity will start going up tomorrow, but oh, it's been nice!

Speaking of the weather, because it's been so nice, Isaac has made sure I've been bike riding with him in the evenings.  I haven't been feeling well, but a bike ride isn't going to make me worse, that's for sure.  If anything, exercise helps the pain because it releases endorphins.  That's the best pain killer out there!  We don't go fast and don't go far, but it's nice to be forced to get out and enjoy the breeze and sunset.

I love that today is the last day of STAAR (our state standardized test) for my 6th graders!  I don't have to deal with this test again until next year.  Woohoo! 

I love that there are 5 1/2 weeks left until summer!

I bought this dress over the weekend.  I'm not sure I'm loving it yet on me, but it sure is cute on the hanger!  Taking fashion leaps is not easy for me.  I would live in jeans and t-shirts if I could....

Which is why I love that this is STAAR testing week so I can wear jeans and t-shirts!  Ha!

What are you loving this week?

Linking up with Jamie.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Meal Planning Monday

Sunday: Broccoli Cheese Pasta and Chicken

Monday: Cheesy Mushroom Fish Bake

Tuesday: Patenaudes are bringing us dinner...such a blessing!

Wednesday: Leftover Broccoli Chicken

Thursday: Sante Fe Chicken

Friday: Fish Leftovers

Saturday: Sante Fe Leftovers

Linking up with Katy today!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Eat Your Heart Out!

You know you wish your dog was this cool.  Don't lie.  :)  This has been Aggie Belle's favorite Saturday game for about a month now.  She brings in every single sack of groceries from my truck to the kitchen.  Yes, she gets a treat every time she brings in a bag, but she is so proud of herself for helping! 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Why There Won't be a Zambia 2012 Trip

This has been an unpleasant morning.  All signs indicate that my body is generating endometriosis more quickly than my poor nervous system can tolerate.  I know I need to sit down and write about when I was first diagnosed and the 3 and a half years that followed to get my body stabilized, but I don't have the energy at the moment. 

I woke up feeling decent this morning, which is typical.  I'm rested after a good night's sleep, I haven't been on my feet in 8 or 9 hours, and my body is relaxed.  I decided I needed to get some house work done before the day wore on because I never know if it's a good day or bad day just from waking up.  (Have I mentioned how much I hate this disease?).  Our bathroom was a wreck from me neglecting it for a week, so I hit it up first.  By the time I was done with the tub, toilet, and sink, I was in so much pain I was in tears.  Not only was I hurting, but I was angry.  Very angry.  I don't want a repeat of '05-'07.  And, for the first time, it clicked why all the doors for us to go to Zambia this summer have slammed in our faces. 

When I walked out the door to leave for the History Grant Trip last June, Isaac promised me we'd go see our girl the next summer.  Yet, everything I tried to do to plan this trip failed.  I have felt incredibly guilty for talking about how we'd go this summer for it to fizzle apart.  But now I get it.  I'm too vulnerable to travel across the world this summer.  If I have to be hospitalized, with my severe allergies, I need to be here with my doctor and hospital that has my records to know what to do.  I can't serve to my full potential if my legs have given out and I can't walk.  And there's lots of gorgeous, beautiful, fun walking to do in Zambia!  Oh, it's amazing!  But I couldn't even get down our hallway this morning.  And so while I see my Daddy God is protecting me, I'm mad.  I don't want to be ill anymore.  I don't want to have to think long term before I make plans.  I don't want to have to live on a day by day and sometimes hour by hour basis to determine if I feel up to doing something.  It's miserable.  I hate having to depend on others to accomplish things I can typically do myself. 

And yet...through my tears this morning, and the agony that I need to write our girl a letter to tell her I'm too sick to come when in her eyes 'too sick' means death and America means simple cures, all I could think of was "If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus tis now."  And it's true.   

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Matt's 50th Birthday Mutiny

Yesterday was our music minister Matt Marsh's 50th birthday.  We totally fooled him by acting like we were rehearsing in our normal fashion last night.  After a couple of songs, our fearless leader Jim stood up and started complaining loudly how Matt never lets him have a solo, makes him work countless hours unpaid for keep music filed, marked, etc, and how he wasn't putting up with it anymore.  One of the sound guys qued the theme to Pirates of the Caribbean as we all began shouting, "Mutiny" and "Walk the plank!".  Someone brought up a pirate costume of sorts as many of us pulled out eye patches, hats, and swords.
Matt and Trudy getting taken off for the trial by Jim.

Our director and his wife were marched upstairs to the Black Pearl (the Great Room) so the trial could begin.  We all filled plates with fabulous pirate fare and sat down to hear the witnesses give their testimony.  Folks had sent in videos and many old friends came to properly roast Matt.  Matt has no problem telling anyone that he has ADD and is a truly creative soul.  He's also incredibly spontaneous, so there were more stories to tell than could fit into a 2 hour trial.  Many of the stories I had heard or even been a part of.  I love being in the same church for more than 14 years now.  It's truly home and family!  We laughed til our sides hurt as stories from his musical days at Harden Simmons were told, pranks involving real and fake snakes were shared, and escapades from old mission trips were rehashed.  In the end, we opted for Matt to receive the pirate treasure instead of the plank, so he went home with a brand new gun safe.  I'm jealous.
Calling for a verdict.
The decor was absolutely incredible.  Several folks spent many hours turning much of the 2nd floor of our church into a port and ship.  I kept telling myself I needed to snap a photo of such and such, and then got home and realized I had very few pictures.  I was having too much fun talking and laughing to remember to snap away.  Oh well. 
Hand made chandeliers to look like a pirate ship

Warning sign in the port.

Part of the port.  There were also crates with oranges, apples, and other produce.

Happy birthday, Matt!  Don't leave us just because we mutinied!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I love that in the last two Wednesdays, 49 kids at my school have decided to trust Jesus as their Lord and Savior.  Our Christians in Action (CIA) club is doing phenomenal things on campus.  About 4 of us teachers have been meeting weekly all school year to pray for our campus, and our prayers have not fallen on deaf ears!  Praise You, Daddy God!  This is why I teach.  I can't wait to hear about this morning's meeting!

I loved having GNO last night with my friend Kim.  Two hours of uninterrupted conversation-happiness! 

Still on a high from all of this weekend's fun...check out the Weekend Recap to see why.

I love that my brother went on vacation for a week and called me the day he got home to tell me all about it.  That in itself was enough to make my week!

I really hope we never have sick kids, but I am so glad Texas Children's is 20 minutes from our house.  I love that place for sick kiddos!  I got to visit with an amazing patient Monday night.  I don't know many 14 year olds that would use the hospital as a mission field, but this one is.

My hibiscus are in full bloom.  There are dozens of red, peach, yellow, and pink flowers all over my bushes.  I will miss them when I move.

Bailey and Aggie Belle are this mommy's heart song.  I love their cuddles, their personalities, and I miss them like crazy during the day.  Three more years, and hopefully then I can be a stay at home mommy!
No one really wanted to get up this morning. 
What are you loving this week?

Linking up with Jamie.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Meal Planning Monday

Monday: Russian Chicken with Rice and Green Beans

Tuesday: Girls' Night with Kim; Isaac's on his own

Wednesday: Church

Thursday: Spaghetti-it never got made last week

Friday: Leftover Chicken

Saturday: Hope to be in College Station for Muster

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Weekend Recap

I'm having a flair up of endometriosis, so I'm not the happiest camper in the park, but I got to spend lots of time with friends this weekend, which helped tremendously.  I may or may not decide to do a series of posts of life with advanced stages of endometriosis, so stay tuned (maybe).

Friday night was dinner group with my co-workers.  Isaac was out with his best friend, so I was on my own with a bunch of teachers.  It was so nice to sit out by the water, laugh, and talk about something other than students.  Woohoo!

I got a text from my darling friend Ashley saying she would be in town on Saturday, which just made everything 100 times better!  I scheduled an appointment with our realtor so Ashley could come see the house we're thinking about buying since she doesn't get to make it to Houston very often.  We had fun exploring, and then we headed off to a car dealer to look for a new car for her.  Ashley's very fun car Harriet is on her last leg.  We've had some good times in that car, but it's time to say goodbye.  That evening, I joined Ashley and our friend Michelle and her two girls for a trip to the playground and dinner.  We were all three exhausted (Ashley works way too many hours each week, Michelle is mom to two and expecting twins), but we had so much fun.  I don't think just the three of us had had hangout time since one of my bridal showers nearly three years ago.  Ridiculous.  I had little Madisyn take a picture of us before I called it a night.  It's a special photo not because we look smashingly hot but because it's real life! 

So grateful for these two ladies! 

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I'm loving that my amaryllis finally decided to bloom! A student gave me the bulb 2 1/2 years ago as a gift.  It is supposed to sit in a dark place for 6 weeks, be set out, and bloom in the Spring.  Yeah, that didn't happen.  For TWO springs.  Then, this year, it bloomed, just in time for Easter.  Super cool!

Saturday night I got to visit Taste of Texas for the first time.  We were celebrating Laura's birthday there (Happy birthday come Thursday, Laura!).  Taste of Texas is a phenomenal steak house.  It's about 30 minutes from our house, but totally worth the drive.  They have a soda bar, warm chips and queso, and popcorn machine while folks wait for their table.  Their menu is extensive (and expensive), but the steaks are melt-in-your mouth amazing.  Isaac ordered steak, and I ordered lobster so we could make our own surf 'n turf.  Wow.  Delightful.  I think David's birthday is next, and I hope he picks Taste of Texas too! Please ignore the horrible photo quality.  My phone doesn't have a flash, and the lighting was dim.

Birthday Girl!

I saw these pjs in a shop early in the Spring.  They didn't have my size, but I scoured the internet until I found them on mud-pie's website.  I so adore giraffes and green and pjs, so this was just a perfect combination for me for the upcoming warmer nights.

I'm also loving our full blown house hunting.  It's exhausting, but we're having a great time.  We found a house today we're going pray about putting in an offer.  The house is a bit further from my parents than I'd like for it to be, and there's not yet a pool in the yard, but the house itself is just about perfect.  Check back for updates!

What are you loving this week?

As always, linking up with Jamie.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Meal Planning Monday

Sunday: Sandwiches (We had a big lunch at my grandparents for Easter!)

Monday: Leftovers from last week

Tuesday: Leftovers from Taste of Texas

Wednesday: Leftovers from Easter

Thursday: Spaghetti

Friday: Dinner Group at The Filling Station

Saturday: Leftover Spaghetti

I'm hoping this low cooking week means we'll have lots of time in the evenings to house hunt!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

He Is Risen: Happy Easter!

As a Christian, it's hard to decide if Christmas or Easter is a happier day.  Christmas celebrates my Savior's birth, but Easter honors the day He conquered death to save me from my sins.  Both are beautiful things! 

Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?”  “They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”  At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.
He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”  Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary.”  She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”). Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”  Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.

~John 20:11-18

In as much as Friday's church service was somber and meaningful, today's was joyous and bold!  Now, the trick is to wake up each day after Easter and live like Christ, not like the world.  Amen!

After church, we had a wonderful meal at Nanny and Dede's.  Isaac also surprised me with an Easter Lily at church.  It's beautiful!
This is becoming an annual thing: family Easter photo at Nanny's.

Pretty Lily!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Mario Brothers Mushroom Cupcakes

Isaac made these little cuties for a birthday party this weekend.  The kids had a surprise in the middle too! 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Good Friday

I'm not sure anyone wants to go to Good Friday services.  Good Friday is a funeral of sorts.  It's heavy on the soul.  My heart aches.  My Lord died for me.  He didn't have to.  Jesus could have saved Himself.  But, He loves me (and you, and you, and you) so much that He was obedient to a plan that called for His death for my life.  That hurts.  Deeply. 

See, as a kid, I had a thing for Superman.  Not a crush, I just though he was cool.  No other superhero ever piqued my interest, but Superman did.  In my eyes, Christ is much like Superman....except He's real and not sci-fi make believe.  Like Superman, only one thing could kill Jesus-my sin.  Yet, unlike Superman, who would stay dead with kryptonite, Jesus wouldn't be defeated.  He conquered the grave-my sin-so I can live for Him on Earth and with Him in Heaven.  AMEN!  Thank You, Jesus, for Your obedience for me.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

There are SO many things I'm loving this week!

As of this past Saturday, our sweet Aggie Belle has been an official member of our family for a whole year.  She's grown up, is so cuddly-even at 60 pounds, and she adores the ground we walk on.  It doesn't get better than that!

I love that the University of Kentucky won their 8th NCAA Men's Basketball Championship Title Monday night!  This was so very exciting for my family, though the greatest game might have been when we smoked University of Louisville on Saturday.  What my family will do next year when A&M is in the SEC and we occasionally meet up UK is still up for debate, but we're just going to soak in this bliss while we can!  BIG BLUE NATION!

The Palm Sunday concert Sunday night at our church: Our choir and orchestra combined with Clear Lake United Methodist's choir and orchestra for a night of celebrating redemption.  It was a beautiful service of hymns.  I wish I could put the recording on here. There were about 160 singers, 35 instrumentalists, and one incredible pianist. Unbelievable worship!

My grandparents came to the concert: When I was a kid, I'd call Nanny and Dede to tell them a recital or concert date, and they'd buy a plane ticket and be here.  Sometimes I'd find out two weeks in advance my mom hadn't told them when I thought she had, and I'd call crying, and they'd still make it here.  I love that my Jesus gave my brother and me such awesome grandparents.  I love that they will STILL come to my concerts (and now, often times Isaac's concerts), even though we're much closer to being 30 than we are to our teenage years.  Yes, it helps that they live 20 minutes away now instead of 15 hours, but I still don't think the distance would have changed much.

I love Holy Week.  I love having one week of the year where we have a fairly clear picture of exactly what was happening in Christ's life.  We know he taught for 3 years, but the daily details aren't chronicled for us.  We know facts about his childhood, but not details.  Holy Week is one time we know exactly how Jesus entered into Jerusalem.  We know exactly what He did with the disciples that week.  We know about Thursday night and Friday's events.  We know about the empty tomb.  I LOVE IT!

ABC's MISSING.  I am HOOKED.  Yes, Ashley Judd is an awesome actress (if nothing else, she's a UK grad, and we'll forgive her political leanings), but the plot is even better.  I love those fast paced, keep me on my toes movies, and this is even better because it doesn't end after two hours.  I'm at rehearsal Wednesday nights and I baby sit on Thursdays, but is my new best friend to play catch up with Missing.  The show is filmed on location, so there is plenty of European scenery to feast on too.  The bad news is that, if I understand it right, there are only 3 more episodes for this season.  SAD!

I love that I got to meet Miss Evie last night.  I took dinner to the Whistlers and was able to cuddle Evie for a whole hour.  She is a DOLL, and I am in love.  Evie is a strong, touchable reminder to me of God's knowledge of the desires of our hearts.  I get chills seeing her and knowing how amazing our God is.  I'm beyond thrilled for the Whistlers.
Borrowed from Shelley's blog...hope you don't mind!
What are you loving this week?

Linking up with Jamie

Monday, April 2, 2012

Meal Planning Monday

Monday: Bacon and Cheddar Crusted Chicken and Green Beans

Tuesday: Pot Roast

Wednesday: Leftovers

Thursday: Chicken Picata and Asparagus

Friday: Dinner with Isaac's NASA Bible Study

Saturday: Taste of Texas to celebrate Laura's birthday!
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