Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

Today, Richard and I are celebrating 19 years of marriage. As I look back at our marriage I am overwhelmed with gratitude to God for His love, grace and mercy in our marriage. The road to today has not always been easy, but I honestly can say I wouldn't have wanted to walk it with anyone else.

On October 7, 1989, I thought I knew what marriage was. I know now, I didn't have a clue. I thought we would say "I do," KISS, eat cake, open presents and live happily ever after. 

On that day I thought I was saying, "I do" to just a husband, but in reality Richard is so much more than that. By God's grace, He has opened my eyes to the treasure He gave me so many years ago.

Richard, thank you for being my husband and best friend. Thank you for your patience and love. You have made so many of my dreams come true already. But, even more than dreams you have given me life with you and our girls as we serve God together. On our wedding day, I couldn't have even imagined how happy I would be 19 years later.  I am perfectly content to live with you, no matter where the Lord has us (Hey, we lived in the valley for 5 years). Thank you for holding my hand, touching me gently, and even watching the Broncos' games with me.
As we learned in Bible study this year our marriage has a purpose and that is to bring glory to God. I pray that as we grow closer and stronger each day, we would bring honor and glory to God through our marriage. I pray that each day I would become more submissive to God and you.
I love you with all me heart and I thank you for 19 amazing years!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Quiet Please

Today, was a slow day for us. I must say it was a welcome change to our schedule recently. We are heading into a very busy month. October will have at least one engagement per weekend. I know today is a rare quiet treat; I am really enjoying it before the storm.
Today, as I cooked lunch Richard played golf in our living room. The girls got in on the fun too. They were rooting for him like he was Tiger Woods. I absolutely love the fact that my girls have fun with their Daddy no matter what they are doing.

Have a great day!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Being Fumigated Out

Hello everybody, this will be a short update. 
At 3:00pm yesterday we were notified that exterminators were coming to our apartment early this morning. We had to empty our kitchen (EVERYTHING!), linen closet and bathroom in three hours. We needed to leave for church at 6:00pm. After church we came home and went to bed. We got up at 5:00am, Richard left for work at 6:00 and I did some last minute things around the house.  The girls and I left a little after 8:00am. We needed to be gone while they sprayed, then we had to stay out for four hours after. I called our landlord at 12:00pm, the exterminators had just finished. So, we were at church until almost 6:00 tonight. We walked into the apartment and the smell was so strong, we walked to Subway for dinner. We decided to let the kitchen air out until tomorrow morning.
Here is what our kitchen looks like tonight.

Hopefully it will be back together tomorrow.

I didn't take a picture of my  living room, because that depresses me. I would rather look at a clean room.
Have a great day!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Welcome Fall

I knew I was going to have a good day yesterday. The first thing I heard on the news was it was the first day of fall. I LOVE FALL! 
Though when I looked out my window the trees were still all green. I told Richard I wanted to go and spray paint the trees orange.
We decided to take our girls on a field trip since they are studying life cycles and classifications. Richard found this little wilderness center in Redondo Beach. We packed a lunch and headed out the door. Now, the internet says this place is 11 acres. I either have no clue how big 11 acres are or they lost a few of their acres.
We still had a great time. There was a lot to see. The girls were able to see ducks, koi, turtles and many little fish.

The girls looking at the turtles.

Feeding "Queenie"

My Little Abby

The weather was perfect yesterday it was a clear warm day with a slight breeze. While we were in the wilderness center, we were in shade most of the time. There were hundreds of trees to keep us cool and also allow us the opportunity to hear the wind blow through the trees. Among, all these green trees was a beautiful gift from God just for me. 

A sugar gum tree that realized it was the first day of fall.

After our excursion to the wilderness center, Richard decided we would drive down to the beach for a walk, since it was such a beautiful day. We were blessed to even find free parking.

This picture is important, because they were
just supposed to get there feet wet.

The girls  with their Daddy.

Tonight I made this cake for dessert to celebrate everything fall. It is a Caramel-Apple Walnut Cake. I used apples from my father-in-law's tree. It was delicious. You can find the recipe here.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A Flower for a Friend

As I walk out my front door I am blessed to have a daily reminder of my sweet friend Gracie. You see one time when I wanted to smell a plumeria flower, and my plant was not blooming she brought a bloom from her home for me to smell. Now that my plant is finally blooming after many years, I have a wonderful gift on my porch. Not only a wonderful smelling plant with many blooms, but a reminder of my friend's kindness and love.

So my friend Gracie this is for you.

I love you and miss you.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Saying Goodbye Again

Recently, Richard and I had to make a tough decision to release our new friends Izzy and Robin. We really struggled with this decision, because of how it would affect our girls. Our girls have had to say many hard goodbyes this year already. We didn't want to see them hurt again.

On January 1st we received a call in the morning, that we needed to go say goodbye to our dog at Richard's parents' house. It was so hard for all of us. Richard and I had bought Jelly Bean when he was only six weeks old. We had him for 4 years before we had children. The girls all loved him too. Bekah played with him for the years that she was an only child.

Then in May, Heather (Richard's little sister), Aaron and their new son Benjamin, left to move out of state. It was not only hard for them to say goodbye to their auntie and uncle, but their new cousin who was only two weeks old at the time.

The girls with their auntie and new cousin.

In August we said goodbye to our good friend Gracie. It is so hard to hear your children weep as a friend says goodbye. 

A picture from last Christmas. One of my favorites of Gracie.

Now we are in September and my girls are saying goodbye again; this time to animals we caught right outside our door--their new friends Izzy and Robin.

The walk to release Izzy and Robin.
Notice Hannah has a paper and pencil with her; 
she drew the animals being released.

Izzy walking out of Richard's hand. Surprisingly, 
Izzy walked out of his hand very slowly.

Robin being released in a tree.

These are hard lessons for our girls, but they also provide an opportunity to talk about eternity and the need for salvation. 

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Hello Again

I can't believe I have not posted in over two weeks. Life just seems so busy right now. I think about posting often, but I always seem to get side-tracked. So I will let you know what has been happening in our world. School is going great this year. The girls are still having fun after a month. As part of my school day I am also making it a point to spend time with Abigail to do "school" things with her. She loves puzzles so I am doing that quite a bit with her right now. I found this great website called Chasing Cheerios with so many simple ideas for teaching children. One of the ideas was to make homemade puzzles from the front of boxes (cereal, crackers, granola bars, etc.).

Abby working on puzzle.

Abby with her first completion.

Hannah and Rachel really excited to do the puzzles too.

Rich teaching the girl's about life cycles of plants.

My first attempt at making my daughters clothes. 
Back to the drawing board.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Izzy and Robin

For all those who are wondering Izzy is doing great. We do not know if it is a boy or girl, so we just refer to it as Izzy. We are having a lot of fun watching him/her. Richard and I have been making sure Izzy is eating well. He/she seems very content, well at least as far as we can tell.
We pulled our resources and bought Izzy a new home with more room than the jar. Now the kids want to fill the jar with another animal. What have we started?

Richard has decided we will be releasing Robin the spider back into the wild this week. He is concerned that if Robin is a girl, we could have baby spiders. Yuck! Robin has grown bigger just in the week we have had him or her. Let me tell you spiders eating things is not pretty. We watched Robin suck the life out of a fly and another unidentifiable bug. This is science in action.
I keep hearing "wow," "cool," "come see this" I have to admit it is great for the kids. I also enjoy having Izzy in the kitchen while I cook. He keeps me company.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Family TIme

Sunday is the most wonderful day of the week. We have the pleasure of going to a great church to worship the Lord. We are also blessed to be able to spend time with our church family. Sundays are long days, but they are also the most enjoyable days.
This past Sunday was no exception. We celebrated Hannah's birthday, we were able to sit in church together with our church family and learn why "Blessed are the Persecuted," we had a wonderful time in prayer in the evening and after service some of the families went down to San Pedro to the water fountain to enjoy the evening. It was a beautiful night.

Bekah and a friend enjoying the show.

The water shoots up so high.

Rachel and our friend Pete.

Some of the people just standing back to
enjoy the show and conversation.

Now, artistically this is not a good picture. But the picture is
worth a 1000 words. We are all enjoying singing along with the music
to " My Favorite Things," from The Sounds of Music.
And I must say these women are some of my favorite friends!
A friend is someone you can laugh with, cry with and even sing
loudly in public with.

Thank you God for continuously blessing us!!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Labor Day 2008

Can I say Happy Fall yet? Oh I love the fall! SO many things to excite the senses. Today, we were able to spend a quiet day relaxing with Richard's parents. It was nice to be cold (their air-conditioner can replicate freezer conditions). It was just a peaceful way to start our week. Our girls love to visit Nana and Grandpa's because they have a yard to play in.

My first fall picture! These are the apples on my FIL's tree.
They were quite delicious.

One of the roses in my MIL's garden.

Richard and his dad. Aren't they handsome.

Richard and his mom laboring on Labor Day.
He worked on their electronics for over an hour.

Stretching Hannah's birthday out one more day.
Yes, we have two desserts on our plates. The cheesecake and
Nana's brownies.

Happy Birthday Hannah Nanna!

Hannah's Birthday Picture
August 31, 2008

Yesterday we were able to celebrate our daughter Hannah's 8th birthday. Hannah is such a joy to have in our family. She is also an answer to my Mom's prayers that I would have a daughter just like me. She is "very active" and sneaky just like I was when I was young. She also has a very tender heart. I thought I would post some pictures of her growing up. Unfortunately, we lost her birth pictures and pictures up until she was about a year old when our computer crashed a few years ago. It was such a sad day to realize I had lost my baby's pictures. But, use it as a reminder to back up your pictures, you can't get them back.

Look at those cheeks!

Hannah and Bekah - Christmas 2001
Our first Christmas at GBC!

Hannah at Knott's - 2004

Daddy and Hannah at Vasquez Rocks - 2004

Hannah at Butterfly Enclosure - 2005

Hannah is growing into an amazing young lady. She loves to serve God and people. She is always busy doing something.

For her birthday dinner she wanted fried chicken, Caesar salad and a minty cheesecake. It was definitely a day to test my cooking skills. I think everything came out ok. She was happy with the food.

Weird colored picture, but the cheesecake was good.
There is a layer of chocolate underneath.

Yum, fried chicken. I did it.
It is not hard, just time consuming.

Happy Birthday my sweet Hannah!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

A Busy Time

As a busy mom this post just made me laugh.

Friday Funnies at Girl Talk.

Dogs are so smart.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

We Grew By Two

Yesterday we started our 2007 - 2008 school year. It was a great day of learning. Even if we had not started formal teaching, God would have got our little girls excited about learning with everything he put in our path.

We started out our morning with oatmeal for breakfast and Richard going over his expectations with the girls. After breakfast Richard and the girls took the trash out.
On the way out Rachel found a very large spider. So Hannah runs in and asks for a jar. I don't have any jars, so I do a quick check of condiments and find a jar to empty.

They all come in and are very excited. Richard, being the great dad he is goes and gets the field guide so they can figure out what is living on my kitchen counter. No luck. I have a pet spider named Robin living on my counter now.

Now, I must add as a side note here, when I was in high school I bought a tarantula for my dad. My mom freaked out and would not let it in our house. So we had to find a pet store to take it. My mom would not even ride with it in the car. When I was growing up she would always say, "I hope God gives you a daughter just like you," or she would utter some kind of bad karma on me. Well, yesterday I called my mom and she laughed and laughed and said God was good. He is good!

So, back to the story of our first day of school, after the whole spider event we started in on school.

After lunch we took the girls to the library. We came back home and were getting ready to go to our friends' house for dinner, when I found a lizard by our car. Don't ask me what I was thinking, but I caught it, gave it to Rich and went in to find another jar. I have named our lizard Izzy. He is sitting on my kitchen counter next to Robin the spider.

As a final example of God's beauty in animals we were on the freeway and a Great White Egret took off from right next to us and flew over our car. It was so beautiful and graceful.

We finished off our first day of school with great friends and food. What more can you ask for?

Rachel asked me today if we are going to start carrying jars around with us.