Friday, August 28, 2009

It's Time To Go Public

Proverbs 23: 1,2
When you sit to dine with a ruler, note well what is before you, (2) and put a knife to your throat if you are given to gluttony.

Proverbs 23:20
Don't drink too much wine and get drunk; don't eat too much food and get fat. (Message)

There are times in our lives that we do things in private or semi-secretively, don't we? That is what I have been doing the past 2 1/2 weeks, well sorta of.

I have posted a couple of times that I am on a weight loss journey because I was tired of being "fat"...yes, I said it FAT, FAT, FAT, FAT!!! It's ok because I had truly gotten fat and I knew it, even if no one else ever said the words to me and they never had.

When I looked at yourself in a mirror all nicely dressed and in a cute outfit that "hangs" just right...I felt attractive or at least, good about myself. However, it is usually before I'd eaten anything all day or had eaten very little. By the time, I'd come home from where ever I/we went and look at myself in the mirror...I would say "Oh my! What was I thinking wearing this because I look huge!" Well, you might never have but I know and will admit that I have...many times. I hated what I see in the mirror looking back at me.

But, it didn't stop there. What about when I had to undress to take a bath, shower or change clothes. Dear Lord, how did I ever let myself get in this shape? How can my husband stand to look at me? How could he still be attracted to this? And so many, many more thoughts! I saw it coming but I choose to keep eating and ignoring it until I became so disgusted with myself that I had to make a huge change.

I don't like to exercise and I didn't want something that I had to write down everything that went into my mouth, count calories, points, go somewhere to do it, buy someone else's food or eat things that I would never, ever eat again after I finished the program. I needed something to fix what was wrong with me and not just work as long as I was on that program.

You see, I've have participated in several programs before and lost weight but for one reason or another...I gained it all back.

I needed something that would last for a lifetime. I am nearly 47 years old and it is harder and harder to lose weight. Gone are the days that I could skip a few meals and lose 5 lbs. It just doesn't happen anymore for me.

My feet, knees, hips and ankles hurt nearly every day and outside of the physical pain...there was the emotional pain that I felt because I had grown to hate myself.

Don't get me wrong...I love my life and my family but I hated my body. Yes, I am so thankful that it is disease free but how much longer would that last with the abuse it was taking from me?

When you use one of those online weight calculators and the result = OBESE, being more than 40 lbs. over my ideal body weight. Wow! That slapped me in the face. I considered myself overweight but I have never thought I was obese...until now. I want to lose 50 lbs. However, I am not worried about the number on the scales as much as the size clothes that I can wear and feeling good about myself. Yes, I want my BMI to be within normal range and all my bloodwork to be excellent but I am not driven by a certain number on the scales.

I began a program 15 full days ago and I have lost a total of 14 lbs.(as of yesterday..haven't weighed today yet.) and a total of 21 3/4 inches lost off of my body. My clothes are starting to get loose and some are baggy but mainly, they are just now becoming comfortable to wear.

Yesterday, I put on a cute pair of white shorts, black shirt and and white polka dot flip flops before heading to the office. Before the weight loss program, the minute that I got home I would have taken those clothes off and put on my baggy shorts and t-shirt because they were so uncomfortable...but, not yesterday. I wore them all day long, worked at my desk in them and didn't come out of them until I took a bath last night.

Also, another huge sign for me is that I can wear my rings and they come bother me. My hands had gotten bigger and my rings weren't comfortable. I never wore them at home but only to church and out places. Many times, I would take them off an put them in my purse because my fingers would swell and they were miserable. Yesterday, I worked in them all day long at my desk...that is a first in many, many, many years! PTL!!!

It is the small changes that I am noticing. As for Roger, he has been on this for 9 full days and has lost 20.2 lbs. Yeah! Go, Roger!!! I don't mind that he is losing faster than me because men do that but he needs it to be healthy and get off his blood pressure and cholesterol meds. I am so very, very proud of him!!!

Now that I know that this program will work and is working for me. I am going public with my weight loss blog journal that I started nearly 3 weeks ago.

If you are interested in what I'm doing, how I am feeling, what I'm eating...check out my blog link below.

I refuse to stay the same and my goal is to be healthier and happier...with MYSELF!

My Journey To A "New" Me

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Very Rewarding Two Weeks

I have been on my new weight loss program for a full 14 days. I have lost 13 lbs, which is awesome. The weight loss has slowed down as they told me that it would but as long as I am seeing progress...then, I okay with it.

This past 7 weight has fluctuated from being up one day, down more the next to zero weight loss one day.

I lost another .8 lbs. this morning and I was happy with that. Then I remembered that I had to measure again today being it was 2 weeks from the last measurements.

I was totally shocked at the results. I knew that I was smaller in come areas and not so much in others but when you see the numbers on the tape becomes reality.

I have lost 21 3/4 inches off of my body in 14 days!!! The biggest lost was in my arms. I lost 3 1/2 inches in my right arm and 2 3/4 in my left. How awesome is that!!!

I will have the breakdown of the different areas on my weight loss journal blog tonight or tomorrow.

Thank you for your prayers. It wasn't easy at first but now, it is much easier because you don't think about food or crave it. Thank goodness for that. :-)

It is all about getting healthy and staying healthy.

BTW: Roger has lost 17.6 lbs. in 7 full days! I am so very, very proud of him!!! Go Roger!!!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Re-Beginner's Luck?

Our family enjoyed a wonderful, relaxing weekend at home together. We started the weekend out right...a little football.

Tyler had his first high school "game" on Friday night. They call it a Pic-Nic Scrimmage between the 10th grade (Sr. High) and the 9th grade (Jr. High). This gives the 10th graders, who don't get much playing time during the season a chance to get their feet wet. Tyler did an awesome job at Safety and had some big tackles. He needed that to boost his confidence playing with the "big boys" now. They were all slapping him on his helmet telling his good job.

We had our grandson, Mason over from Friday evening until Saturday evening. What a joy! He and Tyler play non-stop and he can hold his own. The UFC fighting went until the wee hours of the morning.

Saturday was a relaxing day after we got a few things done around the house and yard. Tyler had to go sell Patriot discount football cards from 10-2 PM and we got our work done during that time. Then Roger took me fishing. I haven't been fishing since I was probably 10 years old and we used to go to Greer's Catfish Pond.

My last memory of fishing was getting up very, very early one morning and heading to East Lake (I think) and fishing in a little john boat for hours. I had to sit still and be quiet...oh, how I hated fishing after that and don't think I'd had been back since. lol

Well, call it re-beginner's luck or whatever but I caught two fish rather quickly before the Arkansas mosquitoes began to carry us off. The first one took a little bit before he decided to bit but the second one...well, I cast out and as soon as it hit the water, the cork went under immediately and I had a catfish. I don't remember what the name of the first one was but he was pretty big and the catfish was fair size too. We threw them back so we can catch them another day.

Ok, Tyler told me that you know you're a "Redneck" when you fish out of the back of a pick-up. LOL! Well, the grass was 1 1/2-2 foot high and all I could think about was chiggers. My sweet hubby went and got the truck, backed it down to the lake bank and let me fish out of and sound.

I thought there for a minute that the catfish was going to pull me out of the back of the truck and into the lake because he put up a big fight. I told, that would make for a great blog climbing out of the lake while trying to fish.

Then to finish off the weekend, we went to church and Sunday School, grocery shopping and then home to cook lunch, which was steak and grilled onions. Yum, yum!!!
The rest of the afternoon....Roger and I went on a day date instead of a night date. We love to just go riding, looking at houses, get out go in some of them and just spending time alone away from the house, TV and phone. We had a wonderful time.
We even went back riding again after dinner, which was Red Snapper and a salad. We eat better on this diet than we did before plus we save the good stuff for the weekends.
**HCG diet update: as of this morning...I've lost 12.2 lbs in 11 days.**
Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

How Quickly The Chapters Close!

I know that I have posted about this many times before but here I go again!

Where has time gone? Oh, heart is hurting and it is bursting with pride...all at the same time.

This is my last child at home...then my home will be empty. Yes, it will be in 3 more years but they will be gone before we know it.

To was just yesterday that I held him in my arms for the very first time and today, I just dropped him off at school to begin a new phase of his life and one that is quickly coming to a close for me...High School and his sophomore year.

It is a mother thing! I have talked to several mothers and we feel the sadness that our children are growing up too fast but yet, fathers...don't seem to notice or mind. They are looking forward to the next phase of their lives...more money in their pockets...well, after college that is! LOL! No, I know Roger will miss Tyler when he goes off to college but it is different for us mothers.

It is a chapter of my life that is closing and will never be reopened again...NEVER. I can be a grandmother, mother-in-law, friend...whatever, but never will be raising a child at home. Yes, they might come back home later but that is still not the same because then...they are adults living under your roof not a child or a teenager looking, listening and hopefully, applying your wisdom and knowledge to their lives...not that young adults can't but it's not the same.

It was just yesterday that...

* my son was born
* that he took his first steps
* spoke his first word
* went to preschool
* started kindergarten
* played his first game of t-ball
* played his first game of peewee basketball
* brought home his first report card
* brought home his first homemade Christmas ornament...which still hangs on the tree
* went to church camp
* played his first game of flag football
* played his first game of contact football
* went through elementary school
* went through intermediate school
* went through middle school
* became a member of the youth group
* played 7th grade school football
* went through jr. high school
* played 8th and 9th grade football
* ran jr. high track
* went on his first youth missions trip
* got his driver's license

* learned to speak Spanish


* is on the senior high football team

* drives my car
* is taller than me now
* got an iPhone and I don't
* been allowed to go with friends with them driving and no adult...ugh!
* has had to make some hard decisions so far as a teenager
* still makes awesome grades
* is carrying a full load of classes including 4 advanced classes
* taking Spanish II
* is active in our youth group and loves it
* juggles homework, football and church with ease plus has time for XBox :-)
* still loves to spend time with his parents and go on trips with us
* loves Jesus and invites his friends to church with team mates

I am so proud of Tyler...he has grown into a very responsible, Christian young man. He is a leader, giving, well-mannered, polite, considerate, family oriented, excellent student, thoughtful, friends with everyone, fun loving and handsome young man. Is it obvious...just how much we love him and how very, very proud we are of him? I hope so...because we are:)

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Monday, August 17, 2009

What Would You Do Differently?

Pastor Rusty proposed this question to us yesterday...

If you knew that Jesus would return for His church on Tuesday at noon...would you live your life any differently?

Think about that!

What would you do that you aren't doing now?

What are you doing now that you would stop doing?

For me...I would knock down the doors of my loved ones and friends who don't know Jesus Christ as their Lord and personal Savior.

I would tell them again how much Jesus loves them, how He died on a rugged cross for them, their sins, their shame, their past, their present and their future.

I would tell them that He doesn't want to leave any of them behind when He returns for His children.

I would tell them that I don't want to spend eternity without them in heaven.

I would remind them of their loved ones who has gone on before them and remind them that if they ever wanted to see them again...they would have to give their heart and lives to Jesus Christ.

I would refuse to leave until that came to know the Lord personally.

There are many other things that I would do such as pray more for the lost, lonely and hurting that God would soften their hearts quickly.

I would spend more time in the Word than I do now.

There wouldn't be anything more important than doing His work in such a short period of time...not work, children, husband, cleaning house, sports...NOTHING!

So, why don't I do that now? We are living in the last days and His return is very, very near!

What would you do differently?


Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Friday, August 14, 2009

It's Been A Tough Week

There are times in our lives that we have to weather storms of our own making and this week is the beginning of that period of time in my life.

As I have talked about in a previous post, I am tired of being overweight and have started a new weight loss program like nothing else that I've ever done.

I am excited to say that I have lost 3.2 lbs. in 2 days but it hasn't been easy. I think, it has been the mental battle that has been the hardest.

Working from home and not getting out much during the day keeps me here around the foods that I love. I know that I could throw them all out but I have a husband and a son who are not on this progam with me and they have to eat. Beside, my teenage son is a bottomless pit at 15 and having 4 hour football practices a day.

This is a storm of my own making...I chose to eat unhealthy and I watched the scales climb a little at a time.

Did I stop it when I first noticed it? No.

Did I stop it when I had only 10-15 lbs. to lose? No. is no one's fault but my own and I am the only one who can change it.

Right now, it seems like a very lonely time in my life and very emotional. One that I have to go alone and I have to do this for me and no one else. I'm sure that being off my hormone replacement therapy isn't helping either.

I didn't heed the warnings, I didn't respect the scales and I chose to take the path that led to where I am today.

I have started another blog that is not publicly open at this time. It is my personal online journal of this journey that I am on. I have included many of my readers that have asked about my weight loss program, but if you are interested in following me on this journey...please, send me a personal email and I will send you a personal invitation to view my other blog.

My new blog is called My Journey To A "New" Me.

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

~A Storm Is Brewing~

I had gone to get Ty and I some dinner last night when Roger called me from the MPD (Marion Police Department) to warn me of an approaching storm.

It was beautiful blue skies and sunshine. I asked him where the storm was and how fast was it approaching. He told me that it was possible that it would go north of us but we were still under the watch.

I honestly forgot about his warning no sooner than I got off the phone with him because it was a beautiful, sunny evening in Arkansas.

I got our dinner, road around, ate and when we got home...I decided to mow the front yard before it rained...if it did.

I didn't get a 1/3 of the way finished with the front until the sky started turning dark, the winds picked up and the temperature dropped rapidly.

I was going as fast as I could on the mower to try my best to beat the storm but all the while...I kept looking at the sky. Not out of fear but in awe...I love to watch the storm clouds as they are rolling it. I ran inside and grabbed my cell phone to take pictures.

The winds were getting stronger and stronger and I knew there was no way to beat the storm. I looked up and who did I hubby in the patrol car sounding the siren at me to get the mower put up and get inside. I heeded his warning...this time.

It reminds me of our things can be going along perfectly, no storms clouds in sight and yet, God is trying to warn us of the approaching danger. But, all we can see is the beautiful blue skies and the peace in our lives.

How often does God warn us to be alert, keep our guard up and not be caught off guard? Sometimes, the storms that the enemy brings on us are swift and unexpected and other times, we saw it coming and had plenty of warning but we refuse to heed them.

I want to be more vigilant and on guard rather than standing around "in awe" of the deception that the enemy is painting before my very eyes. I don't want to fall into his trap and be caught out in the storm when I can be in the Shelter of the and sound.

I Peter 5:8-9
(8) Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. (9) Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. (NIV)

These are the pictures that I made last night. It was a sight to behold.

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Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Today Is A New Beginning For The Rest Of My Life

Today, I am embarking on a new adventure in my adventure or journey that if I follow the guidelines set before me will be a life changing event for me.

I am not going into any details in my post or on my Facebook at this point but trust me when I say..."it will be a trying and difficult journey but one that I trust will be well worth the "pain" that I must endure along the way to get to a better place".

The hardest part at the moment is that on this journey is I have been advised to discontinue my hormone replacement therapy, which I have been on daily x 3.5 years. Wow...that came as a huge shock to me. I still tend to be irritable and hot with my hormones...I can only imagine what it will be like without them.

If my name comes to your mind over the next 40 days...especially, the first 2-3 weeks...please pray for me AND my family who has to live with me. LOL!

I will share all that is going on in my life when I feel that time is right and the Lord wants to use it to help someone else.

Until then....I want to share more pictures from our wonderful vacation. These are our family beach pictures...including us playing on the beach and in the ocean, as well as our family portraits that we made on the beach. Hope you enjoy them.


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Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Friday, August 7, 2009

~Food For My Thoughts Today~

The past week, I have been consumed with thoughts of the future for our country, our lives , our family and our future.

On Monday, Roger and I were talking about the Social Security information that you receive each year a couple of months before your birthday. It is sad to see what you "might" draw when it is time to retire at 62 after working for so many years. But, they make looking at retiring at 65 and 70 more appealing because your benefits go up at 65 and just about double at 70.

Who wants to be working at 70 years old? I don't and I don't want Roger working at 70.

We sat outside that evening and began talking about retirement. Roger will be eligible to retire in 8 years...yes, 8 very short years. Roger can retire the year that Tyler will graduate college if he goes 5 years instead of 4. Wow...that shocked both of us when we realized how close it really is.

Then, the next day was the 20th anniversary of my sweet Daddy's death at the age of 63. He never got to retire and travel the country with my mom like they had planned for so many years.

All of this has weighed very heavy on my heart all week. Add the state of this country, financial crisis, Social Security benefits in jeopardy, Wall Street destroying all your invested retirement funds and the age of people dying younger and younger everyday....well, let's just say...has overwhelmed me.

Are we financially ready to retire? Will we remain healthy to see our retirement years? Will we get the opportunity to grow old together? We will be able to retire and not have to work some type of job to suppliment our Social Security benefit check (if there is one by then)?

I needed to take time this morning on my day off to get in the very presence of the Lord, cry out to Him, ask for His guidance, His peace, His hope for our future and I prayed He would lead me to the encouragement in His Word that I needed this morning.

This is where He lead me to:

Jeremiah 29:11For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD , "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you," declares the LORD , "and will bring you back from captivity. (NIV)

My devotion said: For every individual, every life, God has a plan for the future. God has given you a future. Don't drop out of life for any reason. With Him, your best days are yet to come-better than you can think or imagine.

Ecclesiastes 4:6
Maybe so, but I say it is better to be content with what little you have. Otherwise, you will always be struggling for more, and that is like chasing the wind. (NCV)

When it come to evaluating your life, God's scales weigh differently than yours. Seeing through His eyes, the smallest things can bring you the deepest joy. When you embrace your life just as it is, you can lay down the struggle for what might be or might have been. You can feel the blessing of contentment that, for this moment, your life is the perfect starting place for the next step in the journey.

Philippians 4:11
I have learned to be content with whatever I have. (NRSV)

Having what you want and wanting what you have. It's amazing what a difference the order of those simple words can make. What a gift it is to feel that sense of enough, to not always be thinking more, to believe that God has given what you truly need. As I focus today on the pockets of my life that I "wouldn't have any it any other way", I whisper a prayer of thanks.

As I am meditating on God's Word...I am listing to Jeremy Camp...WALK BY FAITH.It is a choice to fret, worry and dread the future or we can WALK BY FAITH...trusting Jesus Christ to do what is best for us, our family and in our lives. His plan is always perfect and He has already been in our tomorrows...He sees over the hills and around the curves. I am choosing to trust Him today.

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Meeting Kim, Debra & Lisa...What A Vacation!

I wanted to share this slideshow of our time that we spent with Kim, Brad, Kelsey, Jeffery &, the added joy of having Debra and Josh with us and then meeting Lisa a few days later.


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Slideshows To Come:
Beach Vacation Pictures
Family Beach Pictures

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Meeting Lisa! What A Joy!

I was given another blessed opportunity on Friday, July 31 when we continued our family vacation in Orlando, Florida for a couple of days.

I had the pleasure of having breakfast with Lisa Shaw of Sharing Life with Lisa and we spent a couple of hour together.

I can't begin to tell you what a breath of fresh air she is...I could have sat there all day and soaked her in like a sponge!!!

She is as dynamic in person as she is on her blog...there is nothing fake about this powerful, godly woman!

I would have loved to be able to spend all day with Lisa but with it being our family vacation and we had tickets to hit 3 parks in 2 days...I had to keep it to a couple of hours.

I wanted to just keep hugging her, listening to her and sharing the similarities of our lives together.

It still amazes me how God is bringing Christian ladies together from all across the country and how much we have in common. Many of our lives are so much alike, our joys, pains, ups, downs, heartaches and victories...from our past to our present.

Only God could put something this amazing together...through blogging. To honestly think in January 2008...I didn't know what blogging was or how it worked.

If you would have told me that one day I would develop true friendships via the Internet, drive 13 hours to meet and stay with some of these ladies...I would have told you that you were crazy.

I am so thankful for being introduced to blogging and the wonderful ladies that I now call friends. I plan to continue to strive to meet more in real life and I know those meetings will be just as memorable as the ones that I had over our vacation this year.

I have met 4 precious ladies so far and they are:

1. Laurie Ann - A Magnolia's Heart Beats

2. Kim - Homesteaders Heart

3. Debra - Clothed in Scarlet

4. Lisa - Sharing Life with Lisa

Meeting Lisa was truly a joy for time, I want to meet her husband and daughter plus spend much more time together. I'll be back ladies...I promise.

I love you, Kim, Debra, Lisa and Laurie each hold a very special place in my heart!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

~20 Years Ago Today~

20 years ago today, August 4th, 1989, I lost my best friend, hero, greatest supporter, mentor, my children's Daddy!

He left this life on earth too soon for me, but not too soon in God's timing. I was only 26 years old and I still needed my Daddy! I don't understand why it was his time and it doesn't change the pain that I still feel today in his absence...but, I trust my Heavenly Father in His decision to take him home. God never makes a mistake and He saw the bigger picture that we can't see.


I love you so much and I miss you greatly! We shared so many things together...our looks, personality, spunk, sense of humor, handyman abilities, your love for Christmas and love for life.

I will never forget the day that I was in 1st grade, sitting at my little desk just working away when Mom came to check me out of school.

You called her and told her to go get me from school. She was worried that something was wrong and began to question you. You told her that nothing was wrong and to go get me, bring me home, change my clothes and you'd be there to get me in just a little bit. You went on to explain that you had to fly to Dallas and you were taking me with you for the day. You said that you always took my brother, Jeff but wasn't able to take me because you couldn't take me in the boys bathroom with you. You saw the opportunity for a day trip to Dallas and you wanted to share it with your!

I still smile when I think of the different times that after I was divorced and raising Brandon on my own that you walked me to the car after work when I was at your house to pick up Brandon from Mom. You knew that I would never ask for a dime and you were so proud of that. You would walk outside with me, open you wallet, get a $100.00 bill out, slip it into my hand and say "if you tell your anyone, you'll never get another one". Daddy believed in helping each of his kids as the need arose and Mom believes if you give to one, you give to all 4 at the same time...I love that about both of them...they help the kids whenever we need them. He always knew when Brandon and I were in need without me ever saying a word.

Laughter is spilling out of me right now when I think back to mowing the John Deere yard for you. The guys that worked for you knew that I was spoiled and would give me a hard time about it. One day, Leroy said to me "do you get everything you want?" and I said "all I have to say is "Daddy, gimme me and Daddy gives me!" burst out laughing and said "she knows me all too well!" ** I'm was spoiled rotten! LOL...I was the baby of 4 kiddos!**

Or, when I climbed the water tower the night before graduation with a couple of classmates, spray painted our names on it (it sits at the end of the football field...where we would graduate) and then, I told you our secret. On graduation night, you looked up at the water tower that had been personally autographed my laughed and said "that's my girl".

I also remember coming up to you at the Riverboat Festival in Parkin just over 26 years ago and asked you to borrow $20.00 so I could talk Brian Byrd into doing a helicopter tour with me. You gave me the money and when it was time for us to take, Mom and Ashley sat on the back of your El Camino to watch us fly. As you sat there watching, laughing and talking about it to Ashley (3 year old niece)...your joy turned to horror as you watched our helicopter with us on board crash into the street on the other side of City Hall. You ran to get to us because the building blocked your view and you were so afraid of what you would find when you got to us.

You told me later that the best sight that you have ever seen was those big, brown eyes looking back at you. With the rotors still turning, you couldn't get to me but you were the first person that I saw that day. As always, you were my hero, my comforter, my strength.

I asked for a refund from the pilot and gave you your money back too! LOL

I strive to create memories with my children and husband because of the great parents that I have in you and Mom. Every year, we went on vacation and created memories. Yes, even the 30 day trip to Alaska from Arkansas...driving in a motorhome...created some of the greatest memories of all.

Thank you and Mom for giving of yourselves, loving your children regardless of our choices, supported us, offered a helping hand anytime we needed it and gave us the space to grow and learn on our own when we needed that too.

I only wish that you could have meet my wonderful, loving husband, Roger. You would have been so proud to call him your son-in-law...he is everything that you ever wanted for me as a husband. He provides for me, loves me, protects me and loves our children with all his heart...just like you, Daddy. I got it right this time :-)

You never got to meet your other grandson, Tyler or your step-granddaughters, Sommer and Ryan or your great-grandson, Mason. It is truly a loss for both them and you!

I love you so much and I can't wait to see you again...walking the streets of gold!


(I am the only one out of 4 children that looked like my Daddy...olive skin, dark hair and brown eyes.)

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Blessings Far Greater Than I Could Have Imagined!

Kim, Debra, me and Biscuit...the Red, White and Blue Ladies! We didn't plan this just happened...I didn't notice it until Kim pointed it out later in these pictures.

As many of you already know, my family just got back from our vacation to Florida. This was one of the top 5 vacations that we have ever taken...we made memories as a family and friends for life.

I have so much that I want to share so I am going to break it up over the week...don't want to bore you.

Kim from Homesteaders Heart opened her home, family and their hearts to us for 4 days at the beach. You try to imagine what someone would be like, sound like and how things will go but you never really know until you meet them. I am no different...the closer that we got to their home...the more nervous I became. I wasn't worried about liking them but was worried about them liking us.

We immediately felt a kindred spirit with them...we are all believers of Jesus Christ and that made us family before we became friends.

Debra from Clothed With Scarlet came down with her son, Josh to visit and meet us for the first time too. Kim's friend, Kathy also came over to go to the beach with us.

I couldn't have asked for anything more that what we had...we received the warmest welcome, a beautiful cottage to stay in, hospitality just oozes from Kim and Brad and it was like see old friends after being apart for awhile. They truly have the Spirit of Hospitality! Oh...the food was wonderful too...Kim is an awesome cook.

Our cottage in their back was cozy, beautifully perfect with a twist of privacy...little bit of heaven on the eastern Florida coast!

Proof that Roger dried the dishes after dinner that Kelsey washed. What an amazing young lady that Brad and Kim have...she is adorable, precious, sweet and her smile will light up the room.

4 days earlier...we were strangers and now...we are friends for life...we will be back...I promise!

I can't thank Brad and Kim enough for the enormous gesture of opening their hearts and home to a Sister in Christ that she has only know through blogging. God is so good and I am so thankful to have been given this opportunity.

Thank you for the memories that you help create for my family that will last a lifetime...precious memories, but more real life...for all eternity!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Next: Meeting Lisa Shaw! What a joy!


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