Monday, August 31, 2009

Tired, So Why Am I Up

For some reason I have always had a problem sleeping. Even as a child. I will always remember the first day of school cause I was soooo tired, I would not fall asleep until 1 or 2 in the morning. I was nervous. I think about that poor little kid a lot. I was small and scared. It would crush me if one of my children were like that. Even though Will is more shy then the others and does not make friends easily, he's a long way from what I was. I wonder what made her like that. I do not remember a lot of my childhood, selective remembrance. I remember the teen years...the smoking that started at 11, the drinking that started at 13...that girl was lost, and had no way to find her way back. I was always looking for something, and never finding it. I was always anxious, wanting desperately to be with the "in" crowd, a follower not a leader. I was raised in church. My mother insisted we go, it was the "thing" to do. So even though I was raised in the church, I never really was in the church. I did my thing, God did his. But the funny thing was, as I got older and even more away from Him then I had as a teen living at home, He never was far from me. It was like having someone looking over your shoulder. I'm sure He hated the freedom of choices I took....I did too. Smoking, drinking, anorexia, bulimia, the only thing I kept away from was drugs. My parents prided themselves at being "cool". They expected us to drink, do drugs etc. So we would get lectures about the wrongs of these vices since "You're going to do them anyway"....OK.... I expect my children NOT to do what I did. I have higher expectations for their behavior, and I will not condone falling by the wayside. My father would smoke and tell me the evils of it while smoking. My parents would tell us about the dangers of drinking too much while my father made wine in the kitchen and they would invite the friends over for "tastings"....my brother and I included, I can still remember my mothers laughter as she had too much to drink. I came home sick drunk the first time, when I was 15...go figure. It was a case of do as I say not as I do. My mother would then tell me if I was going out drinking with my friends just to let her know before hand and be home on time....I was 16yrs old. So much water under the bridge...but the pain and confusion are still there. I try my best to live my life as an example for my children...I know first hand what can happen when you don't. I NEVER want my children to grow up the way I did. It was not until we had Derek and Will that the looking over my shoulder became a roar in my ears that I needed to get back to Him....and I needed to bring my children along also. I had a complete re-awakening, a whole new understanding and relationship with God when I got back into church. And I have been involved full force ever since I went back. Because not only is my eternity at stake, but more importantly, my children's life now and later is at stake. The best thing I can do for them is to help them find a personal relationship with Jesus....so they know where to turn when I am no longer here. So they will know they are never alone. They will never have to keep searching as I did when I was young. They will already know what is important and Who they have catching their back. Because still some nights....I can not sleep.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

MondayRandomness!!

Will's Garden On The Hill, the green in this picture amazes me!
I don't know why she's on the cooler.

Yo, dude.
Oliver had no idea Joe was there.

Later, after Oliver found out Joe was there.

Will climbing.
Colin climbing.
Cassie in the sun.
Francine trying to snag my Nikon.

He loves his cat, even though Joe is having a little to say about being picked up...constantly!
Have a Blessed Week, we will be working on having one ourselves. Will turns 13 on Thursday...bitter sweet for me...he was the child I had for myself since Greg and son #1 Derek were so bonded.....I miss those days when Will thought I hung the moon, sigh, "If I could have time in a bottle"..........

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Time To Cry..... Time To Praise



Peace be still

Richard McCulley graced the gates of Heaven at 12:26 AM Wednesday. If you would like to read more about this amazing man and his ever beautiful wife Kori, click here. Please be in prayer for Kori and their boys.


"We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body,
and to be present with the Lord."
2 Corinthians 5:8

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Thankful Thursday!! Praise Him!!

OK, my Five Thankfuls for this past week:


1. Friends, these are the women you have fun with, blog with, bash your hubby with.....even drink coffee with. They lighten my life and make me smile.


2. Best Friends, I have 3 of these. My Bff and 2 other women that I know I can call upon to help me in whatever crisis. These are my friends that have seen me at my worst and my best. I can call my BFF in the middle of the night and she runs right over...we've done it....a number of times. These are my girls that have seen me without makeup and my house an absolutly complete and total wreck...not just the daily wreck. They do not judge me...they support me...I am blessed.


3. I have a hard working husband who will tackle whatever job there needs to be done around the house. IE: We have a new brick paver patio he put in himself...we have new retaining walls and steps he put in when he decided to have the yard level-graded for the above-ground pool....we are in the middle of a remodel downstairs, it's gone on way too many years(4) but I am not even going to go there now....this is time to be thankful....


4. I am thankful for my 7 yr old that I'm teaching. Tonight in my youth class Iwas talking about how refreshing it is to teach Colin...how kids of that age can just "get" God, very matter-of-fact. We are using "Exploring God's Creation" in science, we were studying the wonders of the earth and how God made it all...doesn't faze him, after all it's God... I LOVE that!


5. And yes, Jesus The Christ... I have such JOY typing that... Praise Him!!

Visit Sonya over at Truth 4 The Journey for more Thankfulness!!

Just Because


Semi-tunnel

Yep, Colin and yet again, another hole in the backyard! We'll study the earth, rocks and all that stuff this year in homeschool, do ya think he's ready?????????

Monday, August 24, 2009

Getting Older, My Boys

Derek 15yrs old..
Will 10 days shy of 13yrs old...


It occured to me today as I heard the door lock to Will's room while he was changing, that my days of these two as little boys are long gone. I can remember when Derek started locking the door when he bathed......such a contrast to running around the house naked after a bath. I remember helping Will put on his clothes in the morning.....not locking the door to do it now alone. They are growing up....my heart is sad....I miss my little boys....

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Homeschool Day 1 Starts TOMORROW

I'm generally pretty snap with school starting....this year is different. I have a 9th grader, a high schooler. I'm freaked....I know what I'm doing, all the planning is done...I'm just whack. Thought I'd share what my new days will consist of...

Derek, my 9th grader
English I- I'm using Paradigm and Tapestry of Grace to have Grammar, Composition, Literature and Vocabulary covered.
Math- Algebra I- Video Text
Science-Apoplogia-Physical Science w/Lab (yay!!)
American History-Tapestry of Grace
Foreign Language- German I- The Learnables
Performing Arts-Vocal-Chattanooga Boys Choir
Church History-Tapestry of Grace
Drivers Ed-Online Course, WooHoo!!

Will, my 7th grader
English-Simply Grammar and Tapestry of Grace for Lit and Composition and Vocab.
Math-Teaching Textbooks
Science-Christian Kids Explore Chemistry (yay we get to blow up stuff!)
Bible-Tapestry of Grace
American History-Tapestry of Grace
Spelling- Spelling Power, probably.

Colin, my 2nd grader
Reading-Books, books and more books
Math-Right Start
Science-Exploring God's Creation
Bible-Rod and Staff
Handwriting-Italic

Shea, pre-school
She will do Science, Bible and Handwriting with Colin and I. Otherwise, the girl is on her own, LOL!

And it's a given all of the kids have PE outside in the afternoon...I've gotta have coffe and sweets sometime! So there are my days..whew tired already..and praying for a really GREAT year!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Thankful Thursday!!!!



Thanks to Sonya at Truth 4 The Journey for being our great Hostess!!


Here are the top 5 I am Thankful for this week!




1. Spirit Jump. This is an awesome organization who lifts the spirits of cancer victims. You can click on the button on the right to learn more and how you can become involved.



2. Health, we are dealing with cancer issues in our youth class. One of the kids asked if I worried that something like neuroblastoma would affect Shea. I said as a mom, I worry anything will affect any of them, but something out of my control such as cancer.....yes, I worry. So I am most thankful for their health!



3. Tonight was the start up for our Family Night Out Wednesday program at church. We have dinner and class.......it was fun and got off to a great start, in spite of the huge storm banging overhead!!



4. My youth group members who trust me enough to talk to me....really talk to me. I feel I make a difference.



5. JESUS The CHRIST.....Think about Him...really think and feel HIM... raise your hands in praise....Amen.



Visit Truth 4 The Journey for other Thankfuls!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

FFF Featuring "The Kitties"!!

Meet Joe and Francine......
This is Francine getting ready for her nap, she is 2 months old........
And this is Joe, he is 4 months old..........
They did not know each other until they moved in together at our place........
The kitties LOVE Greg's chair.......
Best place to snuggle.....
and to be read to by Shea!


Join the rest of the gang at Candid Carrie's!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Thankful Thursday!!

Than you Sonya over at Truth 4 The Journey for hosting Thankful Thursday. Her I go, five things I'm thankful for this week.




1. Our 2 new kittens, Joe and Francine. My 18 yr old cat died last April. Greg said no more cats, ok we still had 3. He relented this weekend, I came home with 2 instead of 1....he was not surprised. Have you ever noticed how baby animals can bring out the best in people? None of the kids remember when the other cats were kittens, so this is all new and fun for them.




2. Going out to dinner with a great friend...without our kids...sometimes ya just gotta get away..."moms meeting" it was fun Abbe!




3. People who say "what can I do to help"?....and you know they mean it.




4. The auction for Kori and Richard to help with their expenses, thanks to all who participated and spread the word.




5. As always, Jesus The Christ....Amen.


Now go over to Sonya's for more Thanksgivings.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

INTERVIEW WITH KORI AND RICHARD AND EXTENSION!!

The Auction time has been extended!!! It will not end until Wednesday August 12th at 11:59 (est)!!!!!!!!

Y'all heard me speak of Kori and Richard, at least speak in blog world terms. I met Kori through blogging last fall. She has amazed me with her journey and faith. Kori inspires me to be a better person, a better child of God. Richard's insight into what is around the corner for him, his peacefulness and assurance, blows me away. In fact, they both blow me away. Kori had to take her blog private. As a mom, she did it for her boys. When Shannon over at In The NutHouse came up with the idea for the auction (on Tuesday 8/11/09), I asked Kori if I could interview them so those of you who don't know them, can see why Shannon came up with this idea, we so many are participating, why this family is so special to so many of us in blogville. Read On:


Kori, tell us a little about your life?
Whew my life. My life is a tough one. But... it's mine and even though it is stressful, tiring and right now it hurts so bad somedays I feel like I am barely breathing, it's mine and I wouldn't change a thing. God planned this life for me before I was a mere thought in my Mother's mind. This is His plan and I choose to follow him down this path of uncertanties giving Him praise all along the way. I may not understand it right now, and maybe I'm not meant to. But to know that God felt me worthy enough to experience this love and this life by blessing me with my amazing husband and two beautiful boys, well, it just blows me away.


Kori, How are the boys handling your family's situation?
Oh our sweet boys. We have always been very honest with them when it comes to everything going on with Richard's health. For the most part they are handling things quite well. It has taken a lot of adjusting on their part. Richard has always been the active Dad. They used to go camping, fishing and played outside together a lot. There summers were always busy doing fun activities with Dad. But in the past year Richard has not been able to do those things with the boys. And I think that was probably the hardest part for them. But we have family nights several times a week now where we watch movies and play games. They'll snuggle up with Richard and I think it just makes their world a little better. I have been amazed by my boys, they have some unbelievable strength.

Richard, what do you want these readers to learn from you?
Don't take anything for granted. Give glory to God for all that you have and all that you've been given. Be nice to everyone you meet because we never know what burdens others may bare. Take joy in the big things, but do NOT overlook the small ones. Sometimes the small things mean the most.

Kori and Richard, what gets you through this?
Our faith in God and knowing that this life here is not the end. It's only the beginning of a new adventure.

Kori, would you like to say a little about the auction?
We are truly humbled, amazed and inspired by the outpouring of love and support for our family. Thank you all for everything. When I started blogging I never expected to meet all these amazing people and to have them share their lives with me. I am blessed to be a part of the blogging community and to have so many people praying for our family is awe inspiring. I am most thankful for the friendships that will last me a lifetime. You guys truly RoCk and I love you all.



Please help us, help this family, any amount is appreciated. If you are not able to participate in the auction on Tuesday 8/11/09 12:00am to 11:59pm, The McCulley Family's button on my right sidebar is a way in which you can still help. Thank you to all my readers. See ya Tuesday!!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Friday Foto Finish Featuring The Kids

I'm getting ready to tell him his eyes are gonna stick like that if he doesn't stop!


And no, I did not take these pictures......


This one did!!!!!!!


He wanted a picture of himself with his drawings on the floor........don't ask policy in effect!



Derek on tour at the Indy 500 Speedway


Louisville Sluggar factory and museum. Still on tour in this one also. He enjoyed tour this year.go figure!


I know, her bangs are long. We're trying to grow them out, not sure I'll make it.


She's soooooooooooo camera shy!!!!!!!



OK this is the first Friday Foto Finish I've been able to participate in since I got my computer back. So since I know y'all have been dyin' just to see a few updates of the kids in their "normal" form, not wedding format, I'm sharing these with ya.

And join the rest of the fun over at Candid Carrie's!!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday is sponsored by Sonya over at Truth 4 The Journey, check it out.


My post this Thursday is very focused. I have a friend Kori whose husband is in the last stages of stage 4 colon cancer and CF. There will be a fundraiser auction on August the 11th for this family. Here is a link to my friend Shannon's blog with the details for the auction: "For Kori"
Kori is at the hospital with Richard, she wrote of the calm and peace she felt in the middle of all the hectic surroundings, God is there with them. I've thought a lot about mine and Greg's marriage in the last few weeks as Kori and Richards situation has gotten more imminent. So my TT focus today is my husband. The 5 things I'm thankful for:


1. He loves and adores his children. He comes home at lunch to see them, always has. He started a tradition right after Derek our oldest was born, of taking the kids to Lowes and/or Home Depot every Saturday morning. And now, he even takes all 4 kids shopping on Black Friday!!


2. He makes me laugh. He can literally defuse any pending blow-up by me with some off the wall remark, so I get confused with my anger. When I found out at the age of 45 that I was expecting, I went to the doctor thinking menopause and came out 12 1/2 weeks pregnant, I got home and got him on the phone and ranted and raved for 10 mins....his comment.."Well, what's for dinner"...I sputtered a lot after that!


3. He makes me do things I should do, but don't want to. He takes the high road, I follow. I could not have gone to the wedding without him....I just couldn't have. He knew that.


4. He is a man of integrity and challenges our children to be the same. He talks God with them, they listen.


5. Last but not least. You have heard the saying the best thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother....he does.


There are more...but I will save them for later. I think of Kori and Richard every day...knowing their time on earth together is short, but knowing how our Father will be there every step of the way...on earth and in heaven.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Wedding Pictures

The REAL reason my boys wanted to go to the wedding!
Lawrenceville Ga. Bass Pro Shop, they loved seeing us!
The 2nd reason the boys wanted to go to Atlanta.

Just what you want to see at a wedding reception.

The cakes were right behind us...all night...temptation!

Jumpy, jump, jump!

The food was all that mattered to this boy!
Colin and his daddy.......were they thirsty?????

Will, Colin and Greg.

Headphones, watching a movie, asleep.

The bridal party table...... next to it 2 fountains, one with sweet tea (LOVED it) and the other with punch. A coffee station was in the middle complete with flavoring syrup!

Will and Shea during the father/daughter dance....she really did pick him first!

And the happy couple, my nephew Matthew and his new bride Sarah.
It was one of the most beautiful weedings I've been to, very classy and chic-chic. I was able to visit with my 2 aunts, 2 of their daughters and all of my SIL Rita's family whom I have not seen in years, they all live in Vermont and I used to vacation with them before Greg and I hooked up. I miss them.
Saw my father, that was about it. He didn't really even speak to the children except to shake Shea's hand. He didn't respond to the boys except "bye" when we were leaving. My husband being the good man he is, took us straight to him when we got there and had everyone tell him bye when we left. His parting shot was that Shea looked exactly like her grandmother. I chose to ignore that remark and said my good-byes. I couldn't sleep that night. But I will one day.
Thank you for all your kind words and prayers since Friday, now I can breathe.