Wednesday, July 31, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I love that I survived making two videos in the last week.  One was a short clip explaining our continuing work in Zambia.  The other was a full day affair, recreating the story of how Kate's charity: water project came about.  If you are new around here, you can read the story here, here, and here.  We literally started filming at 8:30 and finished at 5:30.  The video will be shown first at UBC's leadership conference in August and later maybe on the web.  Hopefully I'll be able to share a link to it in the future.  I'm so excited to see how God uses Kate's story!!

I loved spending the whole day with my grandparents, the pups, and my mom today.  We don't just visit enough.  We go for meals and dog walking and pass around the dogs to them, but rarely do we get to sit uninterrupted for hours on end.  Joy!

I loved reading Isaac's application for a leadership program at NASA.  This man is so incredibly happy in his job.  God has given him the ability to excel in his work, and I'm proud of his daily efforts to always do his best. 

I also love that Isaac has fixed our washing machine not once but twice in the last week and repaired his car's AC.  He's single handedly saving our bank account with his mad repair skills. 

I love Starbucks' Valencia Orange Refreshers.  I like the other flavors, but I tried this one for the first time this week, and it has won my loyalty.  Thank you, students for all the gift cards so I never, ever have to pay a penny for a Starbucks treat!
I love that 5 months from today we'll be celebrating New Year's Eve on a cruise ship with my whole side of the family as my grandmother's 75th birthday present (yes, Nanny, I just told the world how old you can kill me later!)  :)  The 8 of us have never had a trip together, so this is going to be awesome! 

I'm loving my Jesus!

What are you loving this week?

Linking up with Jamie.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Sweet Home, Aggieland

Yesterday I went to College Station to spend the night with our dear friends Ashley and Tim.  It was an absolutely perfect visit, and the bonus is that they're still in Aggieland.  Ashley and I had a blast exploring our favorite college haunts and eateries.  We definitely ate lunch yesterday and today at Blue Baker.  Oh, how I miss me some Blue Baker!  I also introduced them to Cafe Eccel.  Somehow, I never went there with Ashley when we were in school, and she and Tim haven't gone in the 3 years they've lived there.  Now that they know about the culinary goodness that is all things Cafe Eccel, I'm sure they'll be frequenting their doors in the future.  Yum!

The place I had never managed to visit that Ashley introduced me to was the Bush Library.  I have dozens of photos in the gardens and on the grounds of the library, but I had never toured it.  Shame, shame, shame!  It's a beautiful museum dedicated to an amazing couple.  I thoroughly enjoyed reminiscing about events that filled the news when I was a little girl.  This was my mini-TAHG trip for the summer.  :)  I forgot my camera in Houston, so the only pics I took the whole trip were some blurry phone pics at the library.  Still, we had fun!

Ashley took me to the new to me CC Creation's Warehouse to do a little discount Aggie gear shopping.  I may or may not have bought way more than I should have, but I promise the vast majority is being saved as gifts for my family....

Ashley and I cracked up Tim talking about how 'late' we would stay out in college.  For two girls who are convinced that 9:00 is a firm bedtime these days, the fact that we would go to rehearsals for Songfest or Bible studies that didn't even start until 9:00 was just funny to him.  Oh, we're so 'old' now!  Ha. 

While driving down Highway 6, I realized Mom had driven me up to CS for Fish Camp this same week of July 10 years ago.  Oh, how I miss those days of being engulfed by Aggieland.  Phi Lamb, football games, Songfest, and yes, classes, are treasured memories that are quickly being pushed further and further from reach.  I know it's just part of growing up, but it's bittersweet too.  I miss my days there.  I'm grateful for lasting friendships and the ability to happily remember school.

Thanks and gig 'em, Ashley and Tim!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Meal Planning Monday

Sunday: Leftovers

Monday: Cafe Eccel in CS for me and Lean Cuisine for Isaac (in absolutely no way a fair trade off!)

Tuesday: Leftovers

Wednesday: Applegate Chicken Nuggets, Applesauce, and Carrots

Thursday: Pork Chops, Baked Potatoes

Friday: Tuna Cannolis

Saturday: Grilled Scallops and Salad

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I loved last week with the girls.  I loved hearing "I love you" from little voices, impromptu hugs, watching Isaac be their hero, and the way my dogs ministered to their little hearts by being so gentle and sweet.

I love having our friends' dog Ceally with us this week.  She has been great.  Even Bailey likes her!

I love the little boy that saw the four of us together on Friday at Kemah.  He was probably about 9, and he overheard Tina address Isaac as 'Uncle Isaac' while we were on the shuttle boat. He looked at us and said, "Wait...y'all are family?"  We told him we were.  He said he couldn't tell because we were different colors but that this was so cool!  He grinned from ear to ear to figure this out.  Yes, dear, precious one, it is so cool!  We talked about how family can be any way we want it to be.  It was blatantly obvious that he embarrassed the tar out of his grandparents, but I was so proud of this little boy's willingness to learn instead of make assumptions.  Keep learning, little friend!    

I love this devotional book we got Tina for her birthday.  We read it each morning before camp, and it's fabulous!!!  I highly recommend it!

I love UBC's Love Houston this week with our teenagers.  20-30 teens and 5-6 adults are spending our mornings loving on the homeless in town and our afternoons working at the food bank.  I have watched teenagers treat folks with dignity and respect that have so often been treated as outcasts by society.  I have sat and visited with educated, talented people that have fallen on hard times.  I have prayed and worked, and it's been hard, but I love it.  Thank you, UBC, for making me stretch and grow in Christ while showing teens how to do the same.  Thank you for letting me show them that it's ok to be scared as long as the fear doesn't stop us from loving.  I love you!

I love this truck commercial.  I don't love Chevy, I'm a Tundra girl through and through, but this commercial is so me on a level that I rarely, rarely get to show.  But, my truck travels with and makes a pretty powerful statement by itself.  hehehe

Our district passed a bond that included Dell Latitudes for all teachers.  I'm not sure what I think about them yet, but I do love the commercial our TIS showed us at our training.  Nope, paper won't ever completely go away!

I love my Jesus!

What are you loving this week?

Linking up with Jamie.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Little Girl Fun!

Tina and Joelle, two of our nieces, came to visit this past week.  We had so much fun and were so busy that I didn't have time to write about their trip while they were here. 

Saturday was Tina's birthday, so when they arrived on Sunday, we had a little birthday party.  Isaac thought about making Tina a cake, but decided that decorating her own would be much more exciting.  He was right!  Tina received some hand made Zambian treats, two devotional books, and Jamie Grace's CD.  She was a  happy  kid.  I just wish we could've been at her party at home!!

Monday through Friday were spent at UBC.  Tina attended Drama Camp and loved every second of it.  She came home each night talking about how God gives us talents to use for His glory, not our own.  She knew the Bible verses that went along with the lyrics from the musical, and was all around loved on like crazy by the Drama Camp teachers.  Thank you, thank you!  She auditioned for a solo, and we worked hard on it all week.  Joelle had the whole musical memorized by the end of the week too from all of our work.  Awesome!

Joelle went to preschool play days, and while I taught kindergarten and not her class, we had a great week of learning about Moses and how to obey God.  Joelle could tell me each story each evening, and she made new friends so easily.  Her teachers loved on her unconditionally, and I'm so grateful for how my church loves on my family. 

Our evenings were full of walking the dogs, including our friends' dog Ceally that came to stay, Despicable Me 2 with TEENAGERS (our Sunday School kids), snow cone trips to play games, froyo trips, playing, and building K'nex with Uncle Isaac.  One night we had a swimming picnic at the pool.  Friday night we went to Kemah for dinner, a few rides, and fireworks.  What a treat!  Saturday was spent at the beach.  Um, yes please, how we need more of that!   Bridget came down that night so she could see the musical Sunday morning at church.  It was fabulous!!!!  The kids were amazing, and God was glorified.


I think my favorite part of the trip was bed time and early mornings.  We read devotions in the morning from a book called Whatever.  In the evenings, we read from the Bible and prayed.  The raw, sweet prayers of children never cease to amaze me.  We all need to be that honest with God about the good and the bad!

Would someone please bring Dallas closer to Houston?  Isaac and I (and the dogs!) need more visits with these girls and their most precious mommy!!!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Meal Planning Monday

Sunday: Sandwiches

Monday: Chicken, Green Bean, and Apple Salad

Tuesday: Subway

Wednesday: Quinoa stuffed Portobella Mushrooms

Thursday: Pizza

Friday: Salmon Nicose

Saturday: Pearland

Friday, July 19, 2013

July BarkBox

For the most part, I'm thrilled with this month's BarkBox!  The theme was relaxing from the summer heat, and they have definitely provided us with some great tools to do this!

Safemade Bowl ($10.99) They made a special one for BarkBox subscribers with their logo on it.  I love that it folds and squishes so it won't take up a bunch of room when we head to the beach.  This is also going to be my new doggy popsicle maker-it'll be so much better than paper cups!  So excited!

No Grainers  (?? I searched and searched for a website that sold these.  Walmart does, but a price is not listed online.  Best guess~$5). These chicken treats are American-made and free of all grains.  With a pup with digestive issues, this is great for us!

Barkworthies ($4.75) We have gotten their bones before, and Aggie loved them!!  I'm sure she'll have no problem with this beef bone. 

Mr. Barksmith's Smoothies for Dogs  ($4.99) Bananas, apples, and peanut butter frozen for my hot dogs?!  Um, they are going to fight over this one!  BarkBox came with a coupon for this website, and I have a feeling we'll be buy more of them!

Max and Ruffy's Fruit Snacks ($5.25) These organic banana and coconut bites sound awesome, even for humans.  Again, both my furbabies go nuts over bananas, so this is sure to be another hit!

Safemade Treat Ball ($8) The one thing I wasn't impressed with was this toy.  Not a one of the treats we have will fit in it.  Aggie has had fun bouncing it around, but I really don't like toys that require special treats.  I'll look to see if I can find something that will fit; otherwise, a toy alone it will remain.

We have extra friends in our house this week between Tina, Joelle, and our friend's dog Ceally.  That just means more fun with the BarkBox!!  Oh, and they're standing on Aggie Belle's cooling mat which is every Texas dog's dream in the summer!

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