Monday, August 22, 2011

Monday, August 8, 2011

Bringing COLOR to a DARK world!

In just 4 days I will be traveling to Niger, West Africa with a team of 7 of the most amazing people I have ever met!  To say that we are a little excited would be an understatement.  It is amazing to me how God orchestrates his plans so perfectly and without a single detail missed.  
When I placed my name on the trip 'interest' list last April, I had no idea that I would be taking my paint brushes with me.  In fact, probably was looking forward to not painting for a few weeks.  However, God never wastes an opportunity to use anybody.  My talent, well, He gave that to me.  Why would He not have me tell others about Him while using my paint brush?  Duh!
As God created something from nothing, I will be teaching the women of Ayorou and Boubon about how God created and sent His son to die through bible stories and blank canvases.  My prayer is as they pick up their brushes and begin to paint that they will understand God is a creator, an artist. In fact, He is the first creator and the first artist. He had everything imaginable and unimaginable at His disposal when he created. It was a palette of raw materials and colors that He used to make what we see around us, what we don't see, and what we haven't seen yet. The wonders and beauty that came out of that palette are amazing and awe inspiring.  If God created us all in His own image, then we all have some form of creativity and artistry in us. 
While my lack of confidence and hesitancy of painting with a group of non-English-speaking women could cripple me, I know that that my GOD is going to show up in a mighty way and do only what He can do!!!  
Praying that I can show the colorful love of Christ to the women who live in this very dark part of the world!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Twas the First Day of School...

The backpacks were hung on the coat rack with care...

we searched through the closets for something to wear.

Wait!  WE WANT OUR SUMMER BACK!!!  This sweet little story came to a halt when I realized we are so not ready to go back to school!!!  The kids are, not the momma.  However, we did survive the first day, and I was so brave!  HA!  Oh, and Reed was too.  
Reed did wake up this morning wondering where he was going today.  I reminded that sweet, clueless child that he now goes to school EVERY day!  He was less than thrilled, but he obliged.  I could not wait to pick them up yesterday to hear all about it.  They both used the word AWESOME at least a hundred times.  Mom, well she did okay, but when is Fall Break again??  

The only day of the year that I fix pancakes before school

Let the picture taking begin!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

My Heart Leaves for Kindergarten Tomorrow!

Precious Reed,

Ready or not, here you Kindergarten! I cannot believe that tomorrow your dad and I will be dropping you off to sit at your own little desk, with your name written in Sharpie, in a room filled with the smell of new crayons and sharpened jumbo pencils.

I am going to miss those lazy mornings when we hugged your sister off to school in the back of dad’s car, and you and I sat together on the couch watching cartoons while you munched on a pop-tart. I have become quite spoiled to the fact that there is always a buddy in my backseat when I run errands, and how there was one less spot to put all the grocery bags. It seems that since the day you were born we have been counting down to this day. Saying things like, “Can you believe in three years he’ll go to school?” “Next year at this time he’ll be in school.” “Only two more months until school.”
I have no idea what I will feel tomorrow as I drop you off, and will not see you for seven hours, but I do know that you will crowd my thoughts: What are you doing, how are you feeling, are you having fun, are you using your manners, eating your lunch, missing me?

When I think of all you will learn this year, and how much your mind will grow, I get excited. I laugh that it was just this summer that you were worried about having to write your last name on a golf score card after a tournament, and that you may spell it wrong. In just one full week of school, and writing that sweet name we gave you EVERY-SINGLE-DAY, you will never ask us again if it is spelled correctly.

You crack us up, and most everyone around you. I love how you still hide your tall, slim frame behind my legs when someone compliments you, but you are bold enough to make others around you cackle. I love to see you running in the backyard in your football pads, playing football with 10 imaginary linemen and taking them all down, then fist-pumping in great glory because your team one the game. Your adventurous, uninhibited spirit is full of life. You share this same trait with me. Thank goodness that you have a sister that is quite the opposite. You two make a great team. I find comfort that she has gone before you down that concrete hallway, and that she will take care of you. She loves you so much. I have no doubt that one day you will be jumping off a cliff with little thought, and your sweet sister will be there to check the ropes before you jump.

Remember that our world is far from perfect, and that there will be days when you don’t feel like going to school, someone is mean to you, a teacher doesn’t notice you, or your best friend plays with another. It will all be okay...

Our perfect God is always there for you. He loves you, protects you, comforts you. Though far from perfect, He has entrusted us, your parents, to do the same. You and your sister are two of our most perfect gifts.

As you let go of my hand tomorrow and I take in one last hug, I will remember this sweet moment...remember that camo-print backpack you chose (because you think you are tough) well, I know you are still sweet and love your momma because you let me monogram it.

I love you!