Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Grieving

Grieving is a lot different this time around.  I've been through the grieving process for a grandparent and uncles, and although it's tough for them, grieving for your dad is far worse.
If you were to ask me how I'm doing (which most people right now who see me do), I'll tell you "I'm ok"...what I really mean is please don't ask me anymore.  I'm tired of people saying "I'm sorry"  "How are you doing?", etc.  I know that's what most people say, and I am guilty of that myself for those who have lost someone...there's not really anything you can say that I haven't heard.
My emotions are on the surface, I haven't really had the time to grieve properly, I don't know how or when the tears will come, but I'm afraid that when they do come, they may not stop for quite some time.  That's not to say I haven't cried, I have...many different times, but I know there's going to come a time when the tears are really going to flow and the pain will be bad.  I'm not prepared for it, but I know that it's not something that I want to happen in a public setting (i.e. church).
Sunday, I sang on the Praise team.  I was so glad to be back into the routine of being on the schedule, however, I found myself avoiding people.  I'm not doing it to be mean, I'm doing it because I'm just not wanting to talk.  I've turned off my chat function on Facebook because I don't want to chat with people.  It's not that I don't care about what' going on in your life, I do care, but at this moment, I need to deal with what's going on with me...on my schedule, and right now I need to do it slowly.
Please don't get offended if I ignore you when we pass, I'm doing it because there are certain people that I will lose all control around and I'm just not ready to do that yet.  There will come a time when I won't avoid people.  If you must, just hug me, don't say you are sorry...I already know that...I know you care, I can see it on your face.  For now, just be my friend.  Just sit with me, listen to me, let me lead the conversation about my dad...let me go as "deep" as I want into my grief in this moment.  Just pray for me...don't pity me.
Add to all this, K's grandmother being diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer and not doing well.  We are walking down the road of pain management again and Hospice coming in.  My husband's cousin just lost his wife (in her early 40s) to a heart attack this past summer.  My cousin (dad's brother's son) is dealing with his grandmother dieing of cancer and Hospice being called in.  They aren't expecting her to live long either.  Although I don't know her much, I know my cousin is going through a lot (losing an Uncle and now a grandmother dieing).  I'm just not sure how much more one person can take!
I'm somewhere between numb and feeling everything.  My emotions are all over the place. I can cry at the drop of a hat, and usually it's something as stupid as dropping a hat that will trigger the tears.  As my mom has said, "It's not the big things, it's the little things."  She's right...it's not the overall picture of my dad dieing, I'm happy for him.  He's no longer in pain, he's healthy, he's with Jesus.  It's the little things, it's not being able to open a jar, tripping over the same toys I do all the time, the dirty table, the dirty dishes, the never ending pile of laundry.  You know, those little annoyances you deal with on a daily basis.  Every once in a while, they trigger those tears because something doesn't go the way I had expected.
Someday, I will have a "normal" life...but my new "normal" will be different than what it was before.


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Our road has come to an end

I know I haven' t been the best at blogging lately, but have wanted to get on here the past few days to let you all know what has been going on.
As you may (or may not) know, my dad had been on a "Road to a Kidney" for some time now.  He started on Dialysis 3 times a week this past summer after his open heart surgery.  He fought as much as he could, however, I come today with a very heavy heart.
My beloved father passed away early Sunday morning.  He had said he was "tired" and just couldn't fight any more.  As hard as it is, I know my father is no longer in pain and is spending is days with our Heavenly Father.
I never had any doubt about my father's faith, but if I did, those doubts, they would have long since been gone.  We found a book that my dad had been writing in called "A Father's Legacy".  In it, we found out what an awesome relationship with God he had.  It was amazing...brought tears to our eyes to see how passionate he was about what it means to be a Christian and how he felt about his family.  What a great Legacy to leave behind!
I have decided to be sure to work on my "Reflections from a Mother's Heart" book that I have received.  No one knows how short life is...that was made all to clear for me this past summer when my cousin's wife (41) passed away of a heart attack and again with my dad who seemed fine just a few short days ago.
I have been so blessed with having that "Peace that Passes all understanding" that God gives (Philippians 4:7).  My heart is overwhelmed with the love and comfort from family and friends...some who lived close and those who live very far away.  The prayers were felt from the time I sent out a plea to pray on Wednesday (11/4/09), through dad's death (11/8/09), through the funeral (11/10/09), and even today.  We have the Memorial service this Saturday.  We are calling it a "Celebration of Pat's Life"...how appropriate!  We do need to celebrate all that my dad has done in his life and where he is now, standing on the streets of gold with Jesus...although, I'm sure he's probably fishing.
My thoughts are now getting all jumbled up in my head, so I'm going to stop for now.  Thank you to those who were praying for our family, we greatly appreciate it!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

No Match for God

Tonight I had a first hand glance at how God is using technology to minister to people.
Let me start by saying, my dad is in need of prayers.  As you know he's diabetic and is waiting for a kidney.  He recently has been dealing with circulation problems in his legs...the lack of circulation is starting to turn his leg/s black.  Please pray for him, he is scared that he my lose his legs.
I started with that prayer request because it's part of my story here.  I sent out an email to our prayernet at our church along with close friends that I know will pray for my dad.  One of the people I sent that request to is a dear friend of my parents.  Pastor K is a minister our whole family has sat under for about a year when the church we were attending was going through a transition from one pastor to another.  Pastor K, his wife A, and my parents became very close friends.  My parents even went with him to some of his revival services.
Distance now hinders them from seeing each other.  My parents living in Ohio and they live in Georgia.  I try keeping them connected through emails so that they know what's going on with my dad's health.
After sending out my prayer request last night, I woke up to an email from  Pastor K.  God had laid it upon his heart to contact a friend of his that he ministered with, who happened to be having revival meetings going on right now in Florida.  My parents also know Larry & Corrinne Silverman from those revival meetings that they went on with Pastor K and A.
Another email arrived from Pastor K shortly after that with a link to the online podcast that would be happening LIVE tonight.  I made it a point to log on when it started.  Once I got it all up and running, I made sure to introduce myself and let them know who I was and where I was from.  Shortly there after, Pastor K signed on for the same meeting.  I sat and watched as they started their worship time.  Larry chatted with me for a little while to let me know that they would be praying for my dad as soon as the worship time was over.  I immediately called my mom and dad to let them know what was going on (my parents have been having issues getting online, so they were unable to connect to the internet today).
After the worship was over, I was sure to turn up the speakers on my computer, put my mom and dad (who both happen to be on the line) on speaker phone so that my computer speakers would pick up fully.  And through all this technology, my dad was prayed for and felt God touch him...from Florida all the way to Ohio!
God doesn't allow something like distance to hinder His ministry.  Nothing is too big or too complicated for Him!
How awesome that God used technology to reach my dad!
Anyway, my dad goes in tomorrow morning to see his doctor about the circulation in his legs.  Please pray for healing for my dad.
Thank you!  And Praise God for all that He is doing in the lives of those in FL and in my dad!

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Road to a Kidney

Things aren't progressing the way I would have thought.  I had always thought that my dad would be getting a kidney by Christmas...but the looks of that are slim.
Dad's cousin was going through the testing to see if she was a match to give him a kidney.  All the preliminary testing showed up as a match, putting her into more and more testing.  Well, on the heart testing, they found blockage with her heart.  That puts a huge kink in the plans for her to donate a kidney to my dad.  However, I look at this as a blessing in disguise!  Had my dad's cousin not been getting tests done for a kidney donation, I'm not sure they would have seen the blockage in her heart.
My dad has been having some swelling in his legs.  So he went in on Friday to see if they would be able to get a stint put into the legs to help with the flow of blood.  After being at the hospital for some time, they were unable to do anything about his legs.  He has a very high percentage (not sure the exact number, my mom had said something like 90%, but I'm not positive) of blockage in both legs.  With my dad being diabetic, this isn't good.  He goes back on the 29th to the doctor to see what their options are now to get it fixed.
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed and frustrated.  I know my dad really wants a kidney...like Yesterday...but for now he goes in to dialysis 3 times a week.  Dialysis is really taking a toll on my dad too.  He's usually extremely exhausted when he's done and there are days he's really sick from it as well.  I can only imagine what a number this is doing on my dad.  As for me, I feel bad...I feel helpless.  All I can do is pray, pray and pray some more.  I know God has my dad in his hands and He will give my dad a kidney when the time is right.  In the meantime, we learn to treasure each day.  Never missing a moment to tell my dad I love him and I care for him and I want him to do what's best.
If you are a follower of our journey, please continue to pray.  I am really trying to keep up here, but I know I've been slacking!

Monday, September 21, 2009

2009 Women's Retreat

What an awesome time!
Our church hosted a Woman's Retreat this past weekend (Friday evening - Saturday afternoon).  It was a great time of fellowship.
My car load arrived later than I was supposed to, but still early.  We hustled through the set up and registration then headed off to dinner.  I was in charge of the media...I was so grateful to have other women there who had done this type of thing before!
W was so happy to get to know the women of our church.  We spent time in the evening on Friday just talking.  A couple of the women I already knew fairly well, and a couple that I didn't know well at all.  I have never laughed so hard...that's what it's all about.  Making friends and bonding with other women!
On Saturday, before lunch, there was a question and answer time.  At breakfast we were all given index cards to write a question on...the question could be about ANYTHING you wanted.  I was so excited when the question of "When is the next retreat?" came up!  How exciting that the women had so much fun that they were ready to start thinking about the next retreat!!
For those of you who didn't attend, I strongly encourage you to try and attend the next retreat.  It was SO MUCH FUN!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Are you making connections intentionally?

Are you purposely going out and connecting with people intentionally?
That was a question asked of us today in church (maybe not exactly, but very close).  I can honestly say, no, I'm not.  I should be, but I'm not.  I am a shy person by nature...I'm not nearly as shy as I once was, but overall I am...that is until I get to know you, then it's a whole new ballgame.
If I'm in a crowd of a lot of people where I don't know many people, I will stand near someone I may know, but not talk much, just listen.  I find it really hard to go out of my comfort zone and talk with people.  I am working on it...
How many times have you passed someone on the street and ignored them?  Or just didn't even pay attention to them because you were so focused on yourself.  I've done that a lot.  How many people have missed out on something because I wasn't open to talking to them or paying attention?  What if all God wanted me to do that day was say "hi" or smile at someone and I didn't do it because I thought it was very insignificant?  That "hi" or smile could have changed the mood of that person for the day.
What about people in your own family?  How often do they get ignored or missed by you because you are too busy doing things that really aren't important?
How many times has life gotten in the way of you calling up that friend you haven't heard from in a long time?  Or that church member that didn't attend church that Sunday?
Reaching out intentionally...Opening your eyes to those around you who may be hurting or just need a quiet little smile to change their life.
God wants us to reach out to the lost and hurting.  Speak into the lives of others to change their life.  How many times I've missed the opportunity to do that with so many people!


Sunday, August 16, 2009

VBS Finale'

Another year has come and gone with VBS.  At the VBS Finale' on Friday night, we had a total of 175 children and adults.
After our characters went through the closing ceremony, they handed out prizes for those children who brought a friend....we had so many prizes donated that every child who got their name into the drawing got something!
After the closing, they showed a video slide of all the photos taken at VBS.  It was great seeing all the things that have happened.  Once that was over, everyone filed out to get some ice cream before heading home!
After thinking over VBS, I think my favorite part of the whole program is when the children offered prayers.  Our music leader would ask for a volunteer child to come forward to pray for the whole group into a microphone.  The amount of children raising their hand was so neat to see.  These children were anxious about being the one chosen to come forward.  Yes, they were "fed" the prayer from the music leader, but the point of the whole thing is getting those children used to praying in front of a group of people and being comfortable.  It was just so touching to see them pray!
Today, I have sorted and put away items for this year's VBS.  Now onto the next task of finding a church willing to purchase/switch VBS programs so we have more room in our storage.  Our set was AWESOME, our decorating committee went above and beyond what Standard told us!
I'm currently compiling my list of things that worked and didn't work and those who have said they wanted to help out next year.  If God leads me to run VBS again, I will have a head start, however, if it is someone else God wants to lead it, then they would have the head start!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

VBS...Day 4

Day 4 has come and gone.  We ended up with 82 children last night!
You should have seen how crazy it was when 2 of our characters got slimed!  The kids went wild!!!
Finale' is tonight…if you live around the Northern Cincinnati area, you ought to come check it out!  

Thursday, August 13, 2009

VBS...Day 3

Day 3 has come and gone.  We ended up with 82 children last night!  Things seem to be going a bit smoother, but that's probably because the Registration table hasn't had many at it.
The children are having a blast, and you could see last night that they were more comfortable with their crew leaders than the night before.
Day 4 is tonight…if you live around the Northern Cincinnati area, you ought to come check it out!  

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

VBS...Day 2

Day 2 has come and gone.  We ended up with 84 children last night!  That's great!!
The children are having a blast, and you could see last night that they were more comfortable with their crew leaders than the night before.
Day 3 is tonight…if you live around the Northern Cincinnati area, you ought to come check it out!  

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

VBS...Day 1

Last night our church ran our first night of VBS.  We are doing Standard Publishing's Studio Go!
It was crazy at the beginning...but, it went very well.  We had 79 children show up for our 1st day!  Last year at our biggest day we only hit 88 children (by day 4)...I suspect this year will be a lot bigger!!
This year, my job was again to direct VBS, but I have help...I have a co-director and an Elder and his wife to help run it.  Also, we have chosen a good group of Characters to do the opening and closing along with a lot of other wonderful volunteers to run each station!  VBS just doesn't run without the wonderful volunteers!!
Day 2 is tonight...if you live around the Northern Cincinnati area, you ought to come check it out! 

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Becoming the Woman God wants me to be

Our Monday night ladies Bible study has started a new study...it's a journey really, 90 days to be exact!  We are studying the book:  Becoming the Woman God wants Me to Be by Donna Partow
We are on day 9.  To be honest, I'm enjoying the study, but me being the kind of person who likes to see what's coming up next, I'm a bit nervous about week 3.  It's all about diet and food.  This is something HUGE that I struggle with.  I know I need to work through and at least try, but part of me just wants to skip the whole week 3.  I won't though...I will try, as hard as it may be...I guess that would be the time that I need to lean more on God.  But that's something I'm not going to worry about, because, frankly, I need to learn what we are doing NOW, and not worry about what tomorrow will bring.
As the book says in the beginning:  "...if at any moment you are discouraged, stop and focus on what you are learning."
So what have I learned...I've committed to setting my alarm for 6 am and not hitting snooze for an hour getting up at 7 am.  I have been able to memorize Proverbs 31: 10-11 (by the end of the journey I should have Proverbs 31:10-31 memorized).
A wife of noble character, who coud find?  She is worth far mor than rubies.  Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value.  Proverbs 31: 10-11
Yep, that was from memory?  Impressed?  I know I am!  I wasn't sure if I would be able to memorize it or not, but apparently when you read the same verse every day for a week, it sort of sticks!
I am learning to be positive...an optimist thinker!
"A joyful heart is good medicine, But a broken spirit dries up the bones."  Proverbs 17:22
When we lived in CO, we used to sing a song in church based on that verse.  I can only remember the chours of the verse though.
I am excited to be learning to be the woman God wants me to be.  1 day at a time, I'll learn something new each day.  I will be a changed person...I will become the woman God wants me to be!

Friday, July 24, 2009

My Dad

I know a lot of you were able to keep up with what was going on with my dad via Facebook.  But then again, some of you probably are wondering.
My dad had open heart surgery on July 13, 2009...which happened to be my mom and dad's 41st wedding anniversary.  The doctors had to do a Triple Bypass surgery on his heart.  The surgery ended earlier than expected.
Due to dad's failing kidneys, gout, and diabetes, his recovery from heart surgery was slowed.  Dad is now at home recovering...still in some pain, but overall doing well.  They had to put him on dialysis as well.  So he is overly exhausted, but he is recovering.
In a few months (6 hopefully) dad will be placed back onto the kidney transplant list.
We pray daily for a kidney and have watched God walk beside my parents...giving them both strength throughout this past couple of weeks.  Please join with me in prayer for them, for dad's continued healing, strength for both dad and for mom (to endure), and that a kidney would be available for my dad soon after he is back on the transplant list!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Today

I was surprised this morning by a knock at the door... A package arrived for me at the door.  Want to know what was in the package??  Roses!!!!!
Sweet!
I was surprised!!
15 years, 4 boys, 3 states and 8 moves later, I love this man more today than I did the day I married him!
And the card...yeah I had tears!!
Happy 15th Anniversary Kevin!!  I love you!!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Dad

Please keep him in  your prayers...we are looking at Open Heart Surgery...in doing so, his Kidney function will be lost and he will be on dialysis.

Also, because of his heart condition, he will not be considered a good candidate for a kidney transplant for at least a year.

Thanks

Monday, July 6, 2009

Change

Change is inevitable...change is hard.

To grow, you have to change.

The transition from one place to another is very straining on everyone involved.  Friendships are strained.

A true friend walks in when the world walks out

But when God is in the midst of change, you know something powerful will come out of all the changes.

During this midst of change, I'm on my knees asking for God to guide me, direct me, protect me.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Sunday Reflections

First let me start by saying Happy Father's Day to all my daddy readers.

My husband is the most wonderful father in the world...besides my own dad! (I'm a bit biased, I know).

Today's service was such a beautiful service!  Worship was wonderful, I was able to worship with my oldest son.  What a great feeling.  He's learning still, but I see it starting to click (Worship, that is).

Speaking of my son, today was "Move Up Sunday" where all the kids move to the next grade level at church.  "M" goes from the Pre-teen (Grapple), to the Jr. High class (Rush, I think it's called)...and then starts KAOS (the Jr/Sr High youth group).  I don't remember him growing up like this, but I guess that's what happens...I mean, he will be 12 in a couple weeks!

Anyway, back to church.  After worship, we had a special music...it doesn't happen too often, and when it does, the special music always seems to be so beautifully sang!  A gentleman of our church sang Steven Curtis Chapman's Cinderella.  I sat there and listened as tears sprang up in my eyes...it was just so beautiful!

Then they played a video...it was great, God's Love Letter, I wanted to share it with my readers...I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!



Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The shape of ME

Have you ever thought about those people that shaped your life?

A couple days ago, I found the man that pastored the church I grew up in.  After talking with him, I realized how much this man has helped shaped my life in the way that it is now.  He was there during the impressionable part of my life...those teenage years.  He made Catechism class fun.  One joke he told that stood out (and I have no idea why) was...

Why is there a fence around the graveyard?

People are dying to get in!

That quirky sense of humor made the class fun. Youth Group trips were always so much fun...even if I did sit in the lodge while everyone else went skiing.  The top of that list would have to be the time we went to Church Camp as a youth group to work.  We painted each other the cabins and played in the mud...it was one of the messiest best times of my life!

God has a way of using people to help shape the lives of others.

Who has shaped your life?  I want to know!

Monday, June 8, 2009

AWI Online Conferences

A Woman Inispired Online Conference: Ministry Online began today.  4 wonderful woman spoke today about different aspects of having an Online Ministry.  Karla Porter, Leigh Gray, Tracy Jackson, and Alyssa Advant.

First there was Karla Porter who talked about Social Media and your Ministry. She talked about how to use Social Media in your Ministry.  I already use some social media, however, I'm not using it to the potential that I could be using it.  I've got some work ahead of me to see what exactly I'm going to be using it for.

Followed by Leigh Gray on Spilling the Beans and the Motives attached.  The things she said in her talk that really struck me was being Honest and really knowing what my motives are behind each  blog I write.  Above all, prayer before writing...putting God at the forefront of what I write so that His Word comes forth and touches the lives of those that I am trying to reach.

After Leigh came Tracy Jackson on Mommytography.  Oh how I loved this talk!  If you've followed me for very long at all, you know it is my dream to one day open my own photography studio.  To sit and listen to someone talk about how to take photos...ahhh...it was heaven to me!   Time to pull out that camera manual and read it again!  I don't know why I never thought about highlighting the manual, but what a great idea!  I tried to just read it and remember it...why?  I can use it as a reference each time I play around with my camera!

The final conference for the day was by Alyssa Advant on Finding Your Passion.  What great insight on how to find out what your passion, your destiny is!  How your passion is drawn from your personality and your gifts!

I learned so much today, I feel God teaching me things already about what I've heard.  I can't wait for the next 3 days of conferences!!

Schedule for the next 3 days...

Day 2, Amy Bayliss, Maria Reyes-McDavis, Dawn Camp, and Darcy will be speaking

Amy Bayliss will be speaking on Split Decisionz: How To Give Your Blog A Facelift

Maria Reyes-McDavis will be speaking on Biblical Principles for Social Media Success: A Complete Starter’s Guide to Marketing Your Business, Ministry, or Personal Brand

Dawn Camp will be speaking on Facebook: Inside & Out

Darcy will be speaking on Okay So I Have A Blog, Now What?

Day 3, Leah Adams, Mary Snyder, Kristen Schiffman, and Carrie McGinty

Leah Adams will be speaking on ‘I Did It My Way’ Is Never the Best Way!!

Mary Snyder will be speaking on Facebook Friends, Twitter Tweets, and Blogging Buddies: The Blessings of Online Friendships

Kristen Schiffman will be speaking on Embedding Excellence

Carrie McGinty will be speaking on Does Your website/blog reflect who you are? Does it catch your audiences’ attention?

And Day 4, Sara Martin, Genikwa Williams, and The Amies (Amy Bayliss and Amy Stults)

Sara Martin will be speaking on He Knows Your Words!

Genikwa Williams will be speaking on Touching Lives Online: The Power of Social Media to Minister

The Amies will be speaking on Starting Your Ministry From Scratch w/ Full Q&A

Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Road to a Kidney

If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you know that I have been asking for prayers for my dad who has been sick.

My dad has Chronic Kidney Disease.  He is a diabetic whose kidneys are failing.  I have decided to begin posting about his Road to a Kidney.

Feel free to follow along in our story.  I will give you background on my dad so that you all can be a part of what we are all going through.

Prayers are always welcomed and we love hearing from you.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Tugging at my heart

A few months back I had briefly mentioned another ministry that God has been laying before me.  I had no idea then exactly where things were leading, but I'm starting to get a fuller direction as to what that may be.  I'm not quite ready to fill you all in yet, but in time, I will.

Just know that I have been searching more now to find that purpose, that destiny that God has in store for me.  I'm striving to find out exactly what it is and then strive forward in that ministry.

There are things that have sort of "fallen" into my lap (so to speak) that seem to be leading in the same direction as what God is calling me to do.  It's exciting!  I haven't been more egar to get involved than I am right now.  It's scary to me to not know exactly what it is, but I know that God will take care of that, in time.

I know there isn't much information here to go on and it's like telling you "I've got a secret, but I can't tell you"...it's frustrating...but hang in there.  I will share it with you, once I am fully aware of what all is involved!

Prayers are always appreciated!!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Prayer Request

I am using my blog to ask my readers for prayer.  My dad's kidneys are getting worse.  The doctor called him today and told him they were moving forward with the Dialysis/Kidney Transplant route.

I have mentioned before how we are going to get a house so that if they have to move in during this process, we would have the room.  We did find a house, and are working on the contract part right now.

Please pray for the following...

  1. Dad to have strength through this process (I've been told that dialysis is very draining on a person, they are tired and sick a lot).
  2. Mom to be able to support my dad and get the information she needs.  She still works, so we are going to pray for her work situation during this too.
  3. That there will be a match for my dad in the family or a kidney to become available quickly so that my dad can get a transplant.
  4. God's peace throughout this whole process.
  5. Kevin and I's house situation to be completed if/when my parents move in with us.

Thank you all for your prayers...they mean a lot to us!



Saturday, April 25, 2009

Left Meijer seeing RED!!

Literally!

Dear Meijer,

While at Meijer today, I was filling up the cups of pop for my family.  2 Employees were messing with the slushie machine...they filled a cup 1/2 full with RED slushie...when finished one of them (XXX.) threw the slushie into the trash causing the red slushie to fly into the air and land on my head and on my white shirt.  They left laughing about it...when I went to customer service to get my apology (which I shouldn't have had to ask for) I was given an attitude from this XXX saying "I'm sorry, I had no idea it happened", yet he was laughing and telling all his friends about it.

I talked to one of the managers at this store (XXXX, OH on XXXX) and another manager came up and listened in.  They said they would take care of it.

My only issue is HE NEVER SAID SORRY without me prompting him!  If he would have said sorry, it wouldn't have been an issue and I would have laughed it off.

This is a Customer Service Employee who did this.  If he can't even apologize for something he KNOWINGLY did wrong, how can this employee begin to help YOUR customers with their issues?  Is it not your store's policy to keep the customers Happy?  I left the pop area VERY UNHAPPY.

I am VERY Disappointed in the way this situation was handled.  My own children (ages 11, 8, 4 & 4) all kept saying that guy never said sorry and he should have.  How can a child know better than one of your Customer Service employees??  That's not right!

Saying sorry when you do something wrong could go a long way.  In this instance, you wouldn't have had to read this long comment...in his instance, he wouldn't have gotten into trouble with his manager.  In my instance, I wouldn't have been mad, would have even probably laughed with him about it!!

Yeah, I'm over it...and YES, it is funny...now we'll have to see if I can get the red slushie out of my white shirt!!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday

Growing up, every year on Good Friday, mom would take us to the Good Friday service at the Lutheran church we attended.  And every year, my Choir director from school would sing a solo.  I knew the song...but every time he sang it, I would be lost in the song.  Even today, when I hear this song, it hits me hard.  The true meaning of what is going on...I thought I'd share it with you!

Ray Boltz "Watch the Lamb"



Even today, as I watched this video and listened to this song, tears were streaming down my face.  The thought of what God has done for me on that cross all those years ago, brings me to my knees.

Be blessed today and remember what God has done for you!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Spring Renewal

Ahh, the beginning of a new season.  Each Spring brings about a new beginning...trees begin to bud new leaves, grass starts turning green, flowers begin sprouting out of the ground.  Colors emerge forth...life begins again.

I am also beginning to emerge from the ground, so to speak.  I have been in this stagnent place Spiritually, waiting to be revived.  I feel a stirring in my Spirit, a newness coming about.  It's exciting!!

I will be attending my first online conference this week...it's called "A Woman Inspired: Get Revived"  I'm excited to go, I need to be revived!  I see the glimpses of new things on the horizions...God has called me to move into a deeper relationship with Him.

This week is Spring break for my boys, however, they are going to enjoy their Spring break at Grandma and Grandpa's, allowing me to have a few days to myself.  I'll be doing some Spring Cleaning...of the Spiritual kind.  It couldn't have come at a better time either, right before Easter.

As the Steven Curtis Chapman's song Dive goes:

The long-awaited rains have fallen hard upon the thirsty ground
Have carved their way to where the wild and rushing river can be found
And like the rains I have been carried here to where the river flows, yeah
My heart is racin' and my knees are weak as I walk to the edge
I know there is no turning back once my feet have left the ledge
And in the rush I hear a voice, it's telling me it's time to
Take the leap of faith
So here I go

I'm diving in
I'm going deep
In over my head I wanna be
Caught in the rush
Lost in the flow
In over my head I wanna go
The river's deep
The river's wide
The river's water is alive
So sink or swim
I'm diving in
I'm diving in

There is a supernatural power in this mighty river's flow
It can bring the dead to life, and it can fill an empty soul
And give a heart the only thing worth livin' and worth dyin' for, yeah
But we will never know the awesome power of the grace of God
Until we let ourselves get swept away into this holy flood
So if you'll take my hand, we'll close our eyes and count to three
And take the leap of faith
Come on let's go

I'm going to Dive in!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Oh so much!

I cannot believe that I've struggled so much with coming up with something to post.  This never used to be so hard for me.  I would come and post something about my day and that would be it, but now I feel like that's not what I want to post...I want each post to have meaning.  But, in doing that, I haven't had posts.  So I guess, they will have to both happen to get me to post more often!

My dad is now home from the hospital, the blood clot is gone...Praise the Lord!!  He is still having issues with his Kidneys.  They are functioning at 22%...which I think is Stage 3 Kidney Failure (Stage 4 is dialysis/transplant level).  That worries me.  My mom and dad have been going through the counseling for this already.  Getting the information they need to know before he gets to that point.  I talked to my neighbor, she's a Dialysis Nurse at the VA hospital down here.  She is going to get me some information for me.  She used to work at UC Hospital (which is one of the hospitals that the doctor said they would do the transplant at).  She only had good things to say about the transplant wing (is that what they call that?).

So, Kevin and I are looking for a house!  I'm so excited!  We are being a tad picky at what we choose.  We want a 4+ bedroom house, 3 car garage, and a full basement.  We want to have the extra room so that if my dad were to need a transplant down here, they could come and live with us for a time (hence the full basement and the extra garage space).  It's exciting to see so many houses in our price range!  We originally said we didn't want to have a pool, however, we have found a few places that offer a pool in our price range...and even lower than our price range...causing us to take a double look at it.  I know foreclosure is bad, and I would never want anyone to go through that, however, us being in the position we are in, we are finding that the foreclosures to be to our benefit!  We don't own a house right now, we rent, so we are in the best position to get a house right now!

Our church has been going through a lot of changes (or hints of change) here lately.  Sometimes change hurts...some of these changed directly affected me.  God has called us to this church, and I know great things will happen in this church.  Satan has been attacking this church left and right, I can see it.  I have always said that if Satan is trying so hard to take down a church, that something good will come from it.  He wouldn't attack if we were "luke warm" or "stagnant".  He attacks when the Kingdom of God is going to advance. We are fighting Satan, not people.  It's a Spiritual war going on right now.

Our church is doing a church-wide study on Ephesians.  I have learned so much already.  About my prayers and about Church Unity.  It's awesome that this study comes at a time like this!!

VBS is starting up.  I have neglected it since all the "shake-up" at the church.  Why you ask?  Well, the lady I was working closely with to run VBS is no longer in our church.  That hit me hard, I went through my "I can't do this" stage and have since came out on the other end with a clearer head.  I have been on my knees speaking with God about direction, I think it's becoming clearer and clearer as to what I am to do.  I've had more offers of help from people that I know would be wonderful helpers!  Thursday, I will be meeting with the Elder that is over VBS to get him caught up and show him what is needed, where we are going and what we are doing, so he can help and get plugged into the position that he should be in.

I can say this post has been a bit of a random "dump", but I had to get it all out.

God is changing me, molding me into the person He has called me to be.  I'm learning...and one day I'll get there, with God as my guide!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Not as it should be...and other updates

Wow, I haven't been updating like I said I would.  Sorry about that!

I have finally started going back to the gym, which I'm so glad...Kevin is too (he pays for it).

This past weekend I went and visited with my dad at the hospital.  He had a clot that ran from his groin to his ankle.  His leg was swollen up and he has been put on blood thinners.  He's not allowed out of the hospital until he gets rid of this blood clot.  They have him on a heart monitor the whole time, so, even though I'm really worried about him, I'm glad he's being taken care of at the hospital.  He is up there cracking jokes and talking about different memories.  I'm really glad I got to go see him, even if I did have to leave my husband with 4 sick boys at home.

I have so much things running through my head...the biggest one is VBS right now.  I have to figure out where I need help and schedule a meeting with the Elder who is going to be helping me and lay out a plan with him before scheduling a meeting with the board to discuss how things are going and any changes that have been made since the last meeting.

I have been working harder on getting into the word daily.  I'm not where I should be yet, but I am heading in the right direction.  I sometimes struggle with actually reading something...I have done little things to remind me... I use my outlook to remind me to read devotions daily, I have a "Verse of the Day" on my desk top (Window's Gadgets), I have a Verse of the Day (2 of them actually) on my Facebook, I have a bible on my phone and a bible in various rooms of my house, I have an email sent to me via Proverbs 31 Ministries each day.  You would think with all those things I it would be easy, but for some reason there's a sort of disconnect somewhere, but I am truly trying to reconnect.  I would appreciate any prayer covering, so if you feel led to pray for me, please do.

We are house searching right now, which is really exciting!  I haven't been letting myself get too excited about that, I just don't want to have my hopes up too high.  I have been praying for this for years though...could this really be an answer to prayers?  The timing...it has to be a God thing for us to move forward.

I hang out on Facebook with so many friends now, I decided to set up my blog on the blog networks on Facebook.  We'll see how that goes.  I know it doesn't matter how you bring people to your blog, it's going to take me actually updating to keep people coming.  I'm hoping that I can get into some sort of routine.

Anyway, if you stop by, thank you, I'd love to hear from you.  I do appreciate you reading and following!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Mercy

Growing up you heard the chant

"Sticks and Stones may break my bones but Words will never hurt me"

I used that phrase a lot when I was younger, however, the truth of the matter is that words will hurt...words can cut you down...words can crush a Spirit.

God has given me the gift of mercy, which comes with things I need to be aware of (click here for information on the motivational gift of mercy).  The biggest struggle I have is when someone hurts I hurt...which isn't a problem, unless I pick up the anger towards those that made others hurt.

It's hard...some times I'm so upset my husband has to remind me that it's not my fight...which usually helps me to come to terms with not being mad and asking God to forgive me while praying over the situation.

Lately, though, I have been struggling with feelings of being hurt...of hurting other people (I am such a people pleaser)...of being under appreciated...lack of decisiveness (or being firm on those things I did decide on)...of second guessing my callings...was I really called to do what I'm doing or was I just having a difficult time of saying "No"?  I guess the only way to figure that out is to approach the throne of God and speak with him...spend time with him to get a clear direction.

That's where I'm at...in case you wanted to know!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Thankful Thursday


Today is Thankful Thursday...and to be quite honest, I'm having a hard time being thankful.  I've had a pretty rough day...but I'm determined to find what I'm thankful for today.

I'm thankful for my older 2 going to school today.  I was so tired after being up with "D" and "A" last night, I don't think I could have dealt too well with them at home all day today.

I'm thankful that I have nurses at the doctor's office that are available to answer any questions a sleep deprived mom can ask before determining that she, in fact, needs to bring the 2 boys in for a check-up.

I'm thankful that the last 2 times I've visited my doctor's office I've had 2 of the doctors there that I actually feel really comfortable with having.

I'm thankful that the doctors have these tests to help determine what is wrong with my boys and know what to do to treat them.

I'm thankful that Meijer has FREE Amoxicillin, especially after getting our 4th dose of it this week!  (4 boys = 4 doses)

I will be thankful when all 4 boys are in bed tonight so I don't have to hear all the whining and fighting they have been doing today since being home from school.

Thanks for joining me in finding things I'm thankful for today.  As hard as it was in the beginning for me to start this list, I've realized that it got easier as time went on...even with said boys fighting and whining!

Want to see more Thankful Thursday posts?  Visit Lori's Reflections.  Lori is hosting this week's Thankful Thursday for Iris from Grace Alone.

Monday, January 19, 2009

I will go where you lead me

I came home from work to Kevin and "M" playing in the living room.  It was a Friday in the Spring of 1998.  As with every Friday, Kevin picked "M" up from the babysitter on his way home from work.  He got home earlier than I did on Fridays and since the babysitter was on his way, he picked him up.

As I came in the door, Kevin tells me that someone else got laid off from work.  I voiced my concerns about him getting laid off.  He said it didn't look like it, but he thought it was time to get his resume together just in case.

That weekend we spent some time on the computer getting his resume putting his resume together and submitting it out to a few different places.

As I packed for our usual weekend up at my parent's house, we begain talking again about where we would like to be in a few years from now.  How we both would love it if I were a stay at home mom instead of a working mom.  We began praying that God would guide our steps.

As the weeks went by, Kevin would tell me about a place he sent his resume to.  What state it was in and asked me to pray about it...Michigan, North Carolina, Kentucky, Indiana...etc.  With each state, I prayed and shared the information with my mom.  She would also begin to pray.  My mom would tell me things like, I don't know if this is it, I would miss you if you move, etc.

Then came the Colorado one.  My heart jumped.  That was clear across the country from my family.  We currently lived in Ohio.  I prayed, and as I prayed, my excitement about moving there increased, unlike the other places where my heart sank.  As I prayed, a peace about moving away from family came.

I told my mom.  She had a peace about me moving...she said it's the farthest place we've mentioned, yet this is the only place I feel more at peace about you moving to.

Soon it became clear that the company in Colorado was interested in Kevin, so much so that they were going to fly not only him, but also me out to Colorado for an interview.  We left "M" with my parents for the weekend and flew out to Colorado in July (shortly after his 1st birthday).

Within in a month, we were planning a move across country following where God was telling us we were to go.  There wasn't any family out there, we would be completely on our own.

Looking back at that period of time in our lives (we lived in Colorado for 2 years before Kevin got transferred to Minnesota).  We learned to lean on each other for support.  Our marriage was strengthened.  Our faith grew by Leaps and Bounds!  I did become a stay at home mom, so the transition was a huge one from not only across country, but to a place with no friends, no family and me staying home with our son.  It change me quite a bit.  From a shy person to more of an outgoing person.  When thrown in a situation like that, its either curl up and go into a shell and never meet anyone else or change and become the person God wants you to be.  I chose to follow God's leading.  Those are changes I couldn't have done on my own.

Thank you for stoppy by and reading my More of Him Monday.  Please stop by Heather's Not a DIY Life for more More of Him Monday posts!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Thankful Thursday



I know I have been a bit sporadic about Thankful Thursday, but today, I want to do a Thankful Thursday.

There are so many things that I am Thankful for...

A roof over my head...in today's economy, there are so many people losing their home, I have a home, it may not be the house I've always dreamed of, but at least I have a roof over my head at night.

Heat...especially today.  It's 8 degrees (-2 degrees when you factor in the wind chill)...it's cold.  I don't like the cold.  It's nice to have heat and blankets to be warm.

To be taken care of...my husband does a wonderful job of taking care of us and providing for us.  I get to stay at home with my boys while he works hard to pay for all the bills.   By the Grace of God, he has a wonderful job!

For my boys...as hard as it was for me to accept the fact that I would never have a girl, I'm am ever so thankful that God has given me boys!  This comes from one who wasn't supposed to have any children to begin with.  I don't know what to do with girls...I have fully accepted being a mom of boys and no longer have the desire to have a girl.

For my friends...God has granted me some wonderful friends in my church and outside my church.  Each one of them are unique and have a way of making me see things in a different perspective.  They challenge me (in good ways) to change the bad things in me.  They set examples for me to follow.  They speak words of encouragement at times of need.  They are so wonderful!

Above all, for God in my life...because without Him, I am nothing.  Through Him I can accomplish so much more.  He challenges me to do things I would never do on my own.  He uses my weaknesses to accomplish things Great!

Thank you for stopping by today and seeing the few things I'm thankful for today.  There are so many things, but I know that there were a lot of others who also participated in Thankful Thursday and I didn't want you to spend all day here and not visit the others.  Please go visit the others' Thankful Thursday posts.  Iris at Grace Alone hosts Thankful Thursdays!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Calling out a Leader

Around Christmas, I got a chance to meet with a friend of mine from church at the coffee shop.  He's the kind of guy that will challenge your faith, ask how he can encourage and pray for you during the week.  So, while we were drinking coffee, I began to share with him my worries about my dad and other family that I had concerns with, after all we were going to be spending time with family in a few short days for Christmas.

He asked me about my feelings with the ministries I was involved with in church, even suggested a ministry that I could begin that he thought I should pray about.   Our time was short, it was nice just chatting with a friend from church.

As the Christmas season went on, I began praying about what God wanted me to do.  I needed direction.  After much discussion with God, I have come to the clear conclusion that I should be more involved in VBS than what I had originally decided (on my own, mind you).  Last year, I ran VBS because the Children's Ministry Director had her baby a week or 2 before VBS.  So, since she was available this year, I decided I would take a back seat and just sort of "slide by" this year taking the easy way out, but still having the "I helped with VBS" under my belt.

I began getting this stirring in my heart about VBS again.  I talked it over with my wonderful husband who clearly told me "I told you last year, when I was praying, that you were going to be eventually taking it over."  I think when he said that, my mouth dropped.  It was like he had been listening in on the conversations I had with God.

I contacted the Children's Ministry director about my feelings and we had a meeting.  After telling her how I've been feeling that God wanted expected me to do more, and what I felt I should be doing, she told me that our VBS program was going to be moved into the Outreach sector of our church and she wasn't going to be running it.

God spoke to me again through the circumstances of life.  Confirmed what he was showing me in my quiet time.

So, here I am...the Director for the 2009 VBS!

There is also another ministry that I have been praying about...you know, the one that my friend asked me to pray about?  Yeah, that one.  It's not VBS...all the VBS came while praying for the other ministry.  God and I are still discussing the other ministry.  The idease are there, a plan is forming in my head (slowly), but I'm no where ready to share the ministry.  I don't want to go where God isn't...I want a clear picture of what exactly the ministry is before I go forward with it.

This is my first attempt to write for the More Of Him Monday.   If you would like to see more, feel free to stop by at Not a DIY Life...she's the host of More of Him Monday.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

2008 in Review

2008 has come and gone already.  It sure seemed to go by quickly...sometimes a little too quickly!

January

The year started out with me beginning to work on Power Lab VBS (Ah Ha!).  I was also homeschooling "M".  We were pretty on top of our schooling and things were going pretty smoothly at the time.  I was also beginning to work in the K-1 Sunday School class room at church.  That, wasn't going as smoothly as I had wished.

February

VBS started to consume my thoughts.  I was having dreams about not being ready, and just an overwhelming sense that I've bitten off more than I could chew.  AKA...I wasn't relying on God to help me, I was relying on my own strength to do it.

February also brought about "D" & "A"'s 3rd birthday as well as my 34th birthday.

"M" entered his first Science Fair and ended up with a Superior rating!  I was proud, but knew full well that if he had applied himself earlier in the month, but he decided to wait until the last minute to do it.  Then we hit a rough patch in our homeschooling...a bad one.  Causing me to question my ability to teach him not to mention my basic parenting skills.  But, through the Grace of God we got through it with help from some friends in our church.

March

March brought in a lot of sadness.  My grandmother's health began to fail drastically.  And a friend of mine lost her child in a horrible accident. My heart ached in ways I never knew it would.  Things in me shined though as well.  I didn't realize how "in tune" I was to other's sadness.  "M" had a meeting with the staff from his online school and things turned out so much better than I had originally anticipated.

April

In April, I took a blogging break...school slipped behind and I had to push "M" to get as much done as possible a day!  Spring seemed to bring out the worst in his schooling abilities and slowly we fell behind.

May

I won this Word Press blog...I'm ever so grateful to Lisa for hosting the giveaway that allowed me to win! :D The final push to get VBS was upon us.  VBS was scheduled for the 2nd week of June.  My grandmother passed away that month as well.

June

VBS week came and went without too much problems.  Yes, there were a few bumps in the road, but overall things turned out GREAT!  I was elated that things went as well as they did and relieved that it was all over with as well.

July

We celebrated M's 11th birthday in July along with Kevin and I's 14th wedding anniversary.  In between those 2 events, we threw my mom and dad a 60th Birthday/40th Wedding Anniversary party.  We were very impressed that we were able to pull it off!  Mom and dad had only suspected that we were planning on all going out to eat together, not that we would have all of their friends and family at a hall waiting for their arrival!  We even got one of their friends from High School to travel from Chicago to Ohio to celebrate with them as well!

We also got to see Extreme Makeover Home Edition in our town.  My mother drove down the night before to stay overnight and we headed out to the new house to watch the bus move.  That is a day that was HOT, but I wouldn't have missed for the world.  To see something like that is a once in a lifetime thing.  "M" still claims to have High-Fived Ty!

August

We went for our 1 and only camping trip of the year.  We had so much fun, and would love to go back to the Michigan Dunes again.  Our church also had a Worship Night.  Something changed in me that night and I have been forever changed!

September

School started right after Labor Day!  We decided to send "M" back to public school since things weren't working out the best for us at home.  We are happy to report that he is doing wonderful in the public school!

We celebrated "N"'s 8th birthday in September.  We also found out that an eight year old child, when given $20 in cash and not watched very closely at the grocery store (because mom and dad were busy ringing/bagging groceries), will spend the whole $20 on lottery tickets!  And before you ask...YES it's illegal for him to purchase them, but when they have a "vending machine" of lottery tickets just sitting over by the bubble gum machines, it's just calling for a child to play with it!  And he only won $2!

October

In October, Kevin and I started going to a new Bible Study.  I was elated that Kevin wanted to go to one since he has never really showed any interest in going before.

We also walked, for the first time, in the JDRF Walk for a Cure for my Niece.  We were so proud of her, she ended up getting 2 awards...one for the amount of money raised and the other for the T-Shirt design!

November

We celebrated Kevin's 38th birthday.  How?  Well, I went to a Arbone party and he watched football...now that's love!

We had our traditional weekend after Thanksgiving shopping adventure.  My parents' took "M", "N", "D", & "A" for the weekend (it ended up my parents had "D: & "A" and my sister had "M" & "N").  We always enjoy that weekend away from the boys.  It's nice to pretend we are childless...even if it's just for the weekend!  But we are always so excited when they return.

December

We spent most of the month either running from Christmas Program to Christmas Program or from Christmas to Christmas.  However this year it seemed to be a little less travel than usual.  We only spent 1 night up at my parent's house and we actually had Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at home for the first time in a long time!

For 2009, I'm sure there will be new things that God shows us along the way, new challenges to overcome and new friends to meet, but I trust that God will be joining us along this journey and we will rest in the knowledge of Him.