Wednesday, March 31, 2010


today was a great day! we have had BEAUTIFUL weather here the past two days and we have definitely been taking advantage of it!

and thank goodness for the pretty weather because we are able to spend more time outside and less time inside messing everything up.

wow. it seems as if i am constantly walking around to see if anything needs to be picked up and put away. HOWEVER, i am trying not to be a total nutcase about it. i want nora and elyn to feel like they can play and bring toys into other rooms and not get a crazy woman running around after them. fine line.

we had our first showing today. yea! the realtor has not called with an offer though :). when we lived in searcy, we sold our house in 5 days. i guess we have high expectations. ha!

we were not at home when the realtor called to say he was bringing someone by. i immediately started walking through each room in my mind, trying to remember if everything was perfect.

i had left some folded clothes on our bed. grrrrrrrrrr.

maybe tomorrow will be the magic day.
elyn has been telling us A LOT lately that she has to go to the potty. she only tells us when we are at home and she doesn't always go when she sits on the potty. today she told me she had to go to the potty but she didn't want any help. NONE!

so, she went and then told matthew that she didn't her diaper back on. she wanted panties.

you think she is proud? sweet girl! she was so proud and excited about her big girl panties!!!!! she was MAD when matthew told her that we had to put a diaper back on her at bedtime. she wanted panties! we finally got her to calm down when we told her she would wear her panties on top of her diaper. i think potty training begins tomorrow. sigh.

oh, and NEVER wanting to be left out, nora wanted her picture taken too.
and the night nora has been waiting for....decorating eggs!

after we got the dinner dishes picked up, we stripped the girls down (both in panties) and let the fun begin...although in this picture, nora doesn't look like she is having fun. i can assure you though, she loved every single second!

i don't know why i am always surprised when nora acts older. i know she is growing and getting more mature. but tonight, wow, she impressed me! she was so meticulous and careful with the eggs and knew exactly what she wanted to do. she's growing up.

elyn though, was not so careful and meticulous. her first egg was dropped on the floor and deemed "undyeable". she had a great time too!

nora's eggs. she was so proud of this picture :).

what a fun day!

Monday, March 29, 2010

"sister baby"

Elyn has made my life very interesting recently. Because of this little girl I have had to do quite a bit of denying/explaining.

It all started two weeks ago when her teacher at MDO came up to me and said, "I don't want you to think I'm being offensive, but are you expecting a baby?" I immediately looked down at the uber stylish t-shirt I was wearing to see how un-figure flattering it really was.

"Um, no", I stammered. The sweet MDO teacher nervously laughs and explains that Elyn has shared with the entire class that I have a "sister baby" in my tummy.


I went home that night and had a good laugh with Matthew over that story. He asked her about having a "brother baby" and she didn't seem very agreeable to that. Hmmmmm....

Fast forward to yesterday. I was on my way to pick up my little darling from Bible class when a friend stopped me and said, "I know your secret!"

What secret? I don't have a secret. Wait, do I have a secret? Did I forget about it?

She tells me that Elyn has been telling everyone about the baby in my belly. The "sister baby" in my belly.


Thankfully another friend went to another source....Nora. She asked her if I had a baby in my tummy.

NO! (that was Nora's answer)

Now, we would be thrilled and shout it from the rooftops if I actually did have a "sister baby" in my belly. But, I don't.

Truly. I don't.

So, if Elyn comes up to you and tells you that I have a baby in my belly, don't automatically assume that the extra roll around my mid-section is a growing child, it could actually just be fat.

I don't know where she came up with is sweet though.

God is God and God is GOOD

I was touched by this video today. What an amazing story and an amazing faith!

Please pray for Zac Smith and his family today. He is currently on hospice.

God is God and God is Good!

The Story of Zac Smith from NewSpring Media on Vimeo.

Friday, March 26, 2010

movin' on up...

surprise, surprise, surprise...

we put our house on the market today (the extremely shaky and volatile market).

two and a half weeks ago we would have NEVER EVER dreamed that we would want to move.


two weeks ago we heard about a house that was for sale. we went and looked at it...weren't crazy about got us thinking though.

and thinking can be dangerous!

we decided, hey, it can't hurt to look around and see what other homes are for sale in the area. guessed it...we found one that we liked. a lot.

and because we do not just have over a hundred thousand dollars laying around, we have to sell our home first.

now, we are not naive enough to think that the house we LOVE is still going to be for sale when our home does sell...IF our home DOES sell...but, hey, let's put ours on the market to see if anyone thinks our home is AWESOME.

this house that we needs work. and not just "needs a new coat of paint" work. more like, "needs a hole fixed in the wall/all carpet needs to be replaced/demolish the master bedroom" kind of work.

not for the faint of heart. (so, maybe it will stay on the market a little bit longer.)

basically this home is matthew's dream "handyman" home. we would not be lacking for projects


so, now we pray...and wait.

we think our current home is absolutely perfect. we are just looking for something a little bit "more".

i'll let you know if someone else thinks our home is perfect for them.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

pictures from my phone

Let me tell you, I have not been doing a good job of using my "good" camera to take pictures. With the iPhone, it is so easy to just whip it out and snap a quick picture. I need to do a better job of pulling my big camera out and quit using the portability of my phone.

Until that happens, here are some pictures from my phone:

Almost EVERY SINGLE day it is a fight with Nora about her wardrobe. Many mornings end with her in tears. Usually the fight starts when we get to the shoe part of the outfit. She is "in-between" shoe sizes right now and it is making life difficult. I honestly do not care if the shoes she picks out matches what she is wearing. What I do care about is if the shoes are "season appropriate". Her favorite shoes are some white shoes she wore last year for Easter and her black shoes she wears this fall/winter.

Last week I told her to go pick out her outfit. She could wear whatever she wanted to wear, including shoes.

This is what she picked out. And she told me she was so beautiful.

Really? You feel beautiful looking like a bag lady? I might as well just put on a blindfold every morning when I help you pick out your would make life easier.

My friend Joy had a baby recently. I've never seen a more content mother. She LOVES being a mom and told me she is at a perfect point in her life to have a baby. And her baby, well, he is just the cutest thing ever! See:

His name is Fender and they call him Fen. Do you love his onesie? His Aunt Dallas made it for him.

Am I right? Doesn't she look so happy? And beautiful! She told me she still has 10 pounds left to lose...Fen is 4 weeks old. Me too, Joy! And my baby is 2.5 years old.

On St. Patrick's Day we made green eggs. Nora and Elyn were not too sure about green eggs, but after one taste declared them delicious! (I love that she is sporting her dress up clothes for breakfast.)

On Sunday, Matthew and I ran in a race. The Germantown 1/2 marathon was the last race that Micah Rine ran in before she was killed last year. Her dad started training to run it this year, in her honor. A few people heard about that and spread the word. About 30+ people showed up to run it too and support the Rines. I ran the 5K and Matthew ran the 1/2. (Matthew training was almost non-existent. The most he had run before the race was 6.5 miles...and that was about 3 weeks ago. Anyway, he went out and ran his fastest 1/2 marathon ever. I think a few people who had been training for several months were a little upset by that...I can't say that I blame them.). Here we are, before the race, sporting our sweatbands. They say "For the Rines".
Can you see the person in the bed? No? Look closer. It's Elyn, snoring away. I do not see how she can sleep like this!
While we were in Hattiesburg for Spring Break, Pops took both girls to the Dollar Tree for a shopping spree. Both girls got to spend $5. It was a little like Christmas for both of them.
One of the girls favorite things to do at Pops and LeeLee's house is to scale the retaining wall.
And run down the tee box right beside their house.
I took the last two pictures at the park. Nora looks so old to me in the first one.
And Elyn looks so sweet in this one.

Maybe the next time I post, I will have pictures from my big camera. No promises though :).

Friday, March 19, 2010


I CANNOT get on a blogging kick...cannot!

And I really want to be. I have pictures that need to be downloaded, stories that need to be told.

Speaking of pictures, I am SO SAD that I think I erased ALL of our pictures from 2009.

I am absolutely sick about it.

I do not want to go into the hows and whys. It makes me appear extremely stupid.

Let's just say that I cried when it happened and do not even want to get on the computer since then for fear of erasing everything that I have ever put on here.

I am going to take the computer to someone who might know about computers and have them see if they can go into the depths of the gigabytes and rams (I don't know what I am talking about) and see if the pictures can be released from the chips that are holding them hostage.

Really, the only way that I am not breaking down right now is through horrible humor.

Spring Break begins at 3pm today! YEA!

Maybe after a break my brain and heart will be back into blogging.

Monday, March 15, 2010

planting and growing

Spring time (well, fingers crossed, almost!).

It's the perfect time to plant, the perfect time to make things grow.

We (and by "we", I mean Matthew) LOVE to plant. He can whip together a flower/vegetable garden in no time and make both flourish. He would have been a good pioneer man. (His pioneer woman would have needed a spa day every now and then to make it though.)

But, really, spring is the perfect time to plant.

Which makes sense because this spring our church is "planting" a new one.

This is an exciting time for our family right now as we go to the new church. How wonderful to be a part of something new. How incredible to see the growth that God has already allowed to happen. How courageous of so many to be taking this leap of FAITH.

So exciting, so new, so wonderful...


There is one part of our "family" that is affected by the plant...our small group family.

(And I have been an emotional mess these past few days because of this.)

In August of 2005, Matthew and I were approached about starting a home Bible study. We eagerly agreed because of our good experience with a small group when we lived in Searcy. The only thing was, we only knew one couple on the list of names they had given us to contact.

Never mind our initial discomfort, we called each couple and asked if they would be interested in coming to our house for a meeting about starting a new small group. I don't remember how many couple names were on that list...7 or 8...but that first night, 4 families came to our house.

Matthew grilled out hamburgers and hotdogs, I cleaned our house from top to bottom, we even went to the store and bought a few balls to throw in the yard because one of the families had a 2-year-old little boy.

This happened in September of 2005. (Just writing this is making me cry....grrrrrrr.)

For the next few months, we had 4 families that were consistently coming to home Bible study (which I will refer to as HBS from here on out). The Hendersons, The Walkers, The Sharps and The Hales.

In May, we added one more family, The Grahams.

Since the Grahams became a permanent part of our group we have had several families in and out. Some have moved, some have found other small groups that fit them better, some started their own small groups.

Now, in March 2010, our HBS consists of: The Grahams, The Hendersons, The Sharps and The Walkers. The originals.

And they are our family. (Again, tears.)

I know that if I needed ANYTHING....literally ANYTHING...I could call one of these people and they would drop what they were doing to help me. And I would do the same for any of them.

A few years ago, all of the small groups in our church did a series called "My Spiritual Family". All groups were asked to participate, so we did. We had already been meeting together a few years by that point.

Much of the information was for groups that were just forming but because of the study we finally had a name for one another...spiritual family!

We joked a lot about it and got a kick out calling each other "spiritual family"...but, it was true.

Now, here we are, spiritual family and so much more. These people are my FAMILY. I consider them as much a part of our family as our actual family is.

We have all had so much growth together. SO. MUCH. GROWTH. We have grown in numbers (because of babies), some of us have grown in size (while others have shrunk), we have grown into a new home to have our Bible study, we have grown as parents, we have grown as friends, but more importantly, we have had the opportunity to witness each other GROW TOWARDS GOD!

I truly believe God has been growing us, as individuals and as a group, for this next growing season of our life.

Not all of us are moving to the church plant. The Sharps are staying at "home base" while the rest of us help "plant".

And to say that this has not affected us would be a huge LIE.

And nobody likes a know, Revelation 21:8.

Growth is HARD.

We had a growing time last night at HBS. Many, many tears were shed and even a few smiles were seen. But, still, hard.

I mentioned last night that when Matthew and I got married, I was so excited (hopefully, right?). I was thrilled beyond belief.


When I packed up my apartment and loaded it onto the truck, I cried.

When I sat in my classroom for the last time, after everything had been packed, I cried (the ugly cry).

Did I cry because I was sad about marrying Matthew? No. Did I cry because I thought my life in Nashville was so much better than my life was going to be in Searcy? No.

Why did I cry? I think it's because Nashville was such a pivotal time in my life. I moved there right after college, I made it on my own, I experienced MUCH while living there....I GREW. I was a different person when I left than I was when I had arrived 4 years earlier. I was sad that one chapter of my life was closing but EXTATIC that I was opening a new chapter.

That's how this is.

Am I sad that we made the decision to move to the church plant? Absolutely not. Do I think it's going to be amazing? Yes! Am I ready to work and help others grow closer to God? Yes!

What I am sad about is that we are closing a very precious chapter in our life. One in which I grew. And grew with friends.

I'm sad I won't see the Sharps each and every Sunday. I will be sad when Nora asks me if we will see John David at church. I will be sad when James first walks and we don't get to see him toddle around the nursery.

I know our HBS can continue to meet (and we all hope that we do, at some point, each week). I know that just because we are growing in different directions right now does not mean that we will lose each other.

That will never happen. We're family. For eternity.

The next few weeks will be bittersweet as we wind up our "normal" since 2005. I don't know if I will feel normal for the next few weeks.

We all said last night that a group like ours is special. Rarely do complete strangers get thrown together and grow to have such love.

God has been amazing to our group. He has blessed us tremendously with our HBS family.

And I am excited to see where He will plant us next. All of us.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

the day was pretty and the wind blew

So....missed me? (ha!). Remember when I told you that I had a exciting opportunity? Remember? Probably not.

Well, that opportunity is doing some consulting work with some local schools. It is a blessing to our family and enables me to use my mind some. I am excited to do the is great to be in the schools again and I am able to do this consulting while the girls are in MDO. Win, win...right?

Because of this extra work I have let my blogging fall to the bottom of my list of priorities. About twice a day I think of something I want to write about but by the time 10pm rolls around and I have gotten everything else done, I am too tired to lift a finger.

Now, some pictures...

Yesterday morning/afternoon was beautiful. The temps were in the 70's and the wind was pretty low. I let the girls outside, in the backyard, while I was working on some things inside.

(SIDENOTE: How awesome is it that my girls are now at the age where I can send them outside for a few minutes without me being right beside them? VERY! Mind you, I keep the door opened a crack so I can hear if there is a blood-curdling scream. But, I feel like we are at a new point in our lives...they can play alone. HALLELUAH. Have I mentioned that I love that they are 19-months-apart?)

The best purchase we ever made....the sandbox.

My girls could play in or around the sandbox for about an hour. They love it! I don't love the sand bits that get tracked into the house but I am willing to sweep those up if it means happy girls.

This is the first year that Elyn can climb on the swingset without my having a heart attack. She loves to swing and I think will be flying across the monkey bars by the end of the summer.

Last night, after our gorgeous day, the winds picked up and we were under a tornado warning. We were getting the girls ready for bed when we heard a huge loud cracking sound. I asked Matthew what that sound was and he told me our fence had just fallen down. It was a tad windy, I suppose.

You can see that the playhouse was knocked over too. It think it's funny that the fence fell down in one big piece. The posts cracked and busted and couldn't hold the boards any longer.
We have been talking about replacing the fence, because honestly, it was the highest quality to begin with.
I guess that discussion is over with. The fence is about to be replaced.

Friday, March 05, 2010

let the sunshine in!

Hello friends...I am is absolutely beautiful!

However, I have zero pictures to show for it. Instead of taking pictures of my girls and friends at the park I enjoyed talking to a friend and soaking up the rays.

Perhaps when the girls wake up from their nap and we go outside AGAIN, I will take some pictures.

This week has been full of interesting things and opportunities for me.

I promise to elaborate later...

but the sunshine is calling my name.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010


Since this is essentially the baby book for Nora and Elyn, I need to include this information.

We went to the doctor last Friday to her well-child visit. She was so excited about going too (I think it had to do with not getting shots).

First things first...getting weighed. (By the way, I LOATHE that scale!)

She weighs 33 pounds (33rd percentile).
Next up, how tall was she? She is 40 inches tall (57th percentile).

It was a great visit and she checked out "perfectly".

Next year...shots.

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