Sunday, September 30, 2007


Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father which is in heaven. Matthew 6:15

New Hope Baptist church had a 6th grade graduation celebration at the end of the 2006-2007 school year. Each of the graduates were suppose to share a talent. I had to talk her into it but Brooke finally decided that she would sing My Redeemer Lives. She didn't really want the people at our new church to know that she could sing because then they ask her to sing all the time.

Well she was right. The childrens pastor has begged her ever since then to sing again but this time during Sunday morning worship. Today was her day and she was a nervous wreck! Singing in front of this church and in front of her new youth group was a little more than her nerves could handle. I spent all morning trying to help her get over her nerves. Finally I went into my Sunday school room and asked them to pray for her. By the time morning worship started I could tell everything was going to be just fine! She loosened up and even had a smile on her face...much better than the tears I had been seeing all morning!

She sang My Redeemer Lives and was AWESOME! God has given her such an amazing gift! That girl can belt out those notes so beautifully! I listen and listen to her practice...but when she gets on stage in front of a crowd God just annoints her voice. God certainly uses her talent to bless people. Even though I had heard her sing that song all evening yesterday and all morning today I had tears in my eyes as I listened to her on stage....I am not kidding you! Her voice changes! It is AMAZING TO me but I know that it is God annointing her voice! AWESOME!

For such a little girl, she has always been gifted with music. She has an ear for music and stays right on pitch no matter if she is singing or playing the violin. It has been a challenge to get her to perform and share her gift. I keep reminding her if she doesn't use her gift the Lord will take it away. We certainly do not want that to happen!

The challenge on today is to use Matthew 5:16 on a layout. How fitting that I had Brooke and her talent already on my mind today! This picture is from a couple years ago...but it is such the perfect shot!;)

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father which is in heaven. ~Matthew 5:16

Friday, September 21, 2007


AHHH!! The weekend! I still have tons to do but at least I can sleep in Sat morning!
McDonald family reunion Saturday afternoon....and then I plan on scrapping. Unfortunately, not personal scrapping. I have to get a poster made for my upcoming classes at Crafts 2000. Gotta have it done by Sunday afternoon because Sunday night Crafts 2000 is having a Scrapbooking Night with make and takes and free $25 retail value gift to each attendee! They have 130 registered to attend. So I am hoping that I will get some interest in my classes that night! WOOHOO!!!!

I hope to spend some time next week organizing my scrapbook room! I have so many projects coming up and my room is such a wreck I can't even stand being in it! UGH!

Tennis Update: Brooke played doubles and won her match Thursday. Her doubles team and one other doubles team were the only two matches that Hamilton won at this match. The team they were playing, Jackson, has the Greenmont Tennis club kids on it and most of them get lessons with tennis Pros. Unfortunately, we just can't afford the EXPENSIVE Pro lessons. All of the Hamilton kids tried super hard and actually did very well against the Jackson kids...they made them fight for their win!

Here are some of the kits I designed last weekend. Trying to use up some old stock to make room for the new stuff!;)

Have a GREAT weekend!:)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Where does the time go?

Jeesh this week has just flown by! There is so much to do and just to few hours in the day to do it all!

I have started substitute teaching again and feel totally out of sorts! I am not a morning person so having to get up at 5am to get me and the kids ready to leave by 7am is a bad start to the day! Then rushing to drop everyone off at their different places and getting to whatever school I am going to on time.....argh! Luckily so far I have been blessed with good classes. I was totally bushed on Wed though because I was in Kindergarten. Have I ever mentioned that teachers just do NOT get paid enough for all that they do in a day? I didn't even have a lunch break! Had to eat lunch with my kindergarteners! Not even a moment to yourself to go potty! I am just thankful that right now I do not have to have a full time job! Keep all the teachers in this world in your prayers...they certainly need it!

Boys Scouts is started again and Tennis is still taking up Tues and Thurs evenings. Brooke is kinda on a break from violin lessons because her teachers father has been ill....and now with tennis everyday until 5 and matches Tues and is just to much. Everyone is doing very well in school. Tyler continues to get 100% on every spelling test and Nick has only missed a couple words so far this year. Brooke just got midterms and so far has A's in everything but math and she is only 1 point away from an A in it!

Here is a beautiful rainbow photo I took for my Photos of Faith challenge! Picture perfect;)

I just got a job at Crafts 2000 as the Scrapbook Teacher! I am excited to get my classes there started! I will make 100% profit from all of the classes so that should help out a little!

Well I better go get some dinner going so we can head to the tennis match! Oh yeah...Brooke won her Tues Match against a 9th grader 9-7! She was so thrilled because she expected to be beat since the girl was in 0th grade and she is only in 7th!

I can't believe today is already Thursday! Where oh where does the time go??

Thursday, September 13, 2007


Here are the two layouts for my CHRISTmas Layouts class at Scrap Camp coming up Oct 12-14, 2007.

Busy Weekend Ahead!

This week has been pretty jam packed. Brooke had tennis matches Tuesday and Thursday. She is doing great and so proud to be on the Hamilton Tennis Team! She is loving school and according to her grades so far (they have this cool edline thing that we can go online anytime and check grades in every class!) she is making straight A's! Nothing could make a homeschool mom who just sent her child to school any happier!!

Faith Sisters has grown into a great community of Christian women and I feel truly blessed! I know that this faithbooking ministry was something that the Lord has impressed on me as my purpose and it feels good to know that I am walking in his plan for my life!

Well it is going to be a super busy weekend for me! Chad is taking the boys fishing in the mountains while I work at the studio. We have some ladies spending the whole weekend. We have to cook for them and clean and all that fun stuff but after they are all taken care of I am hoping for some scrapping time. Of course, the scrapping time will be making up class kits and make and takes for Scrap Camp...but hey at least it is scrapping! Brooke also has a tennis match on Saturday so not sure how I am going to pull that one off!

Will be back online Monday! Have a GREAT weekend my bloggy friends!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Remembering Sept 11th

This is a picture of one of the crosses that was found in the rubble of the fallen World Trade Center after the Sept 11th attack. The crosses became a place of healing, prayer and meditation for the workers and those who lost loved ones in the days after the attack.

On Sept 7th 2001 my grandma had a stroke. She was taken 2 hrs away to the Ohio State University hospital. On Sept 11th at the exact time of the attatcks I was lost and driving around Colombus, OH downtown trying to find my way to the hospital. I was listening to Ilene Meckly tapes about making cold calls. My husband called and was freaking out. The first thing he said is where are you? I said I am lost in Colombus. He said frantically, "don't go around any tall buildings!" I said...."huh, there are tall buildings all around me I am in downtown Colomubus." He said, "well leave get out of there, the United States is under attack!"

Talk about panic! I was freaking out! He started telling me about everything that was happening. I turned off Ilene Meckly and started listening to the news. In Colombus they were worried about the OSU hospital of all places...apparently they do some biological warfare experimenting there? Ok so now I am seriously freaking because that is exactly where my grandma is in the intensive care at OSU hospital. Not to mention my parents, aunts and uncles, pregnant sister and cousins!

When I finally made my way to the hospital the streets around it were blocked off. After much security checks I was finally able to make it to a parking garage several blocks away from the hospital. Then when I arrived at the hospital I couldn't get in! They had sealed the hospital and would not allow people to come or go! To make matters worse, cell phones were not allowed on in the ICU waiting area so I couldn't get ahold of my family there. I felt so alone, two hours away from my home and my hubby and my babies and like the world was ending. Scared to death! Finally after a breakdown there in the front of the hospital doors the guard let me in! Even though I didn't feel like it was really the safest place to be...and the ICU is on the TOP floor of the least I wasn't alone and could be with my family! We had no idea when we would be able to get out...but at least I was in!

Later that day when things calmed down just a little and all flights were on the ground they finally started allowing people to leave. Our hotel was right beside a gas station. There were people lined up down the block in line for gas. Apparently everyone was afraid we would run out of gas or something? That sent another panic for me because I was two hours from home away from my hubby and my babies....what if I couldn't get back home?

To make matters worse my brother in law was in Salt Lake City at an insurance convention. My sister was pregnant and FREAKING out seriously bad cause her husband was never going to be able to come home! He and another man and a lady from Florida were able to get one of the first rental cars to go out of Salt Lake City. They were all strangers that had just met at the convention. They had made the decision to rent a car and drive home even before they had grounded all of the flights. Good thing because rental cars were scarce later that day. They drove 30 hours straight through and only stopped for gas. They even ate in the car. The lady from Florida still had 14 more hours to go once she got here to WV. I think her mom came and picked her up here.

Panic was the theme for that day. I remember spending much time in deep prayer. That was the only thing that kept me from having a mental breakdown I am sure. I remember praying continually that day and many days after.

I only personally knew one person who lost their life that day. Mary Lou Hague. I went to high school with her. She was one of those super nice people who everyone liked. My heart sank when I discovered that she worked on a floor that was directly hit by the 2nd plane in the south tower. They have named a building of our High School after her in rememberance of her life. There are even billboards still up in her rememberance here in our town.
Check out sites to learn more about her

I had nightmares for many months. The most vivid ones still etched in my memory were terrorists catching the woods on fire behind the community where I lived. Houses were just going up in flames. I was always trying to save my photos and scrapbooks. I had that dream all the time there for a few months. WIERD!

Today I have a candle lit in rememberance of all of those who lost their lives that day. Also in rememberance for all of the soldiers that have been fighting the war on terror ever since that day. I started my day with prayer for all of those families who lost someone that day. Lord, please give them a peace today. Keep them in your prayers today.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Doodling In Your Scrapbooks

I feel like a kid again! Flash back to when you were in school sitting there with a pen in your hand taking notes. What did you do while the teacher lectured? Doodle of course! I am still guilty of doodling while listening in church and while talking on the phone. All of that doodling practice can now be put to good use. Break the gel pens out again because doodling in your scrapbook is the trend! Open up any idea book or scrapbook magazine and you will see tons of doodling.

My friend and Faith Sister Sunny Kohler designed this amazingly beautiful Doodled layout! She used penwork around the outside edges of the heart. She doodled the most adorable little flowers and bee, eye, a heart with wings, and a cloud with a sun peaking over the top...and look at all the little details around the outside edges of that white paper. This is so stinking cute that I have to say it is my FAVORITE layout that I have seen in a long time!

Doodling is defined in the Webster's dictionary as scribbling aimlessly. Scrapbook doodling is a little more planned so I don't think you would call it aimless, but remember it is just a doodle, not a drawing masterpiece! You can doodle to create flowers, lettering, plants, animals, borders and shapes. Doodling and penwork is such a great way to accent your layouts! It is an easy way to add an inexpensive personal touch to your projects. Even if you don't consider yourself a freestyle artist, you can find ways to work this hot trend into your scrapbook.

Doodling can take a little practice. Here are a few ideas you can use to practice your doodling skills:

* Doodle while you wait.

* Trace other artists doodling to get a feel for the movement of the lines.

* Add penwork around the edges of diecuts, or journal boxes. I always use short lines with a dot at the end instead of long continuous lines.

* Doodle in pencil and then trace over it with your pens so you are less likely to make mistakes.

*Use a stamped image as your base shape and then add doodle lines and shapes around the stamped image.

I have found some great doodling inspiration by looking on tattoo websites! You must be careful because you can come across some very unpleasing graphics on these sites too! Just do a google search for Tattoo. Here are a couple of sites that will give you some great doodle inspiration Every Tattoo and Bullseye Tattoos

happy doodling!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Time with Friends

Another fun packed weekend! I actually slept in Saturday! When I got up it was already 10am! Kinda made the day fly by! My sister came over to help me make a meal to take over to Lawanda's family. Her grandma made it home..but was not doing well. I haven't talked to her since Sat evening when we dropped off their dinner so I am not sure how things are going there right now. Continue to keep them in your prayers.

While Christina and I were cooking Lawandas dinner....Diana came buy...she started helping with the desserts! Then our good friend Brenda stopped by too! My brother in law was already here watching football with Chad...WVU vs Marshall. The kids were all playing and having a great time!

Chad, Brent, Diana and I got into a couple canasta games after dinner. It was Diana's first time playing Canasta...but she is a FAST learner! We beat them the first game and then they beat us the second game (Chad finally got his canasta victory!)

Sunday after church everyone came back to our house for lunch. I had fixed pot roast, potatoes, carrots, green beans, spinach and beef was oh so yummy! Diana brought a salad and Brenda brought some dinner rolls! So nice to have friends and family together for dinner after church! Maybe we will have to start rotating houses every Sunday for lunch!

After lunch we decided to see who could win the two out of three Canasta rounds. Diana and I WON! We are the weekend champions! WOOHOO!!

Oh yeah...finally, after 10 months of remodeling our master bath is ready to be used again! WOOHOO!! Well almost, Chad still has to install the faucet in the sink...he is working on that tomorrow. Lawanda's husband Kevin built me the most awesome vanity cabinet! He did a fabulous job and it was really no more expensive then what we would have paid at Lowes or Home Depot for their cheapo pressed wood vanity. Mine is solid wood and handmade! Thanks Kevin!!! I will post pictures as soon as Chad gets the faucet in! I am so happy to have my bathroom back! Sharing with the kids has been a little crazy...especially since I have a preteen girl primping for school every morning!


Friday, September 07, 2007

Sick and scatterbrained!

Ugh! I woke up feeling like I have been hit in the head with a brick. Sinus infection....grrrrrrr. Nick is sick too..both of us had low grade fevers today. Wouldn't have been so bad had I not have so much to do today! I got some medicine in me and went through the day with that wierd drugged feeling that Sudafed gives me! Ever seen that commercial with the balloon head floating around.....well I can totally relate to that balloon head guy cause that is exactly how sinus meds make me feel!

Today was my dads birthday so I went out to lunch with him. I was so out of my head that I forgot to pay! Luckily dad noticed and paid for me! He didn't even say anything until later I realized that I hadn't paid and said that I had to go back to pay...he said he paid it! JEESH! Go out with him for his birthday and HE had to pay for my lunch! Ugh Happy Birthday Dad!

We had crop club tonight. I just love Crop club nights and seeing all our scrappin friends! I spent the evening making kits and finishing a couple of projects for Scrap Camp classes! Will post them soon!

Thursday, September 06, 2007


Now that all the kids are in school....I have found myself talking to my little Toby dog all the time! I am so not used to being home by myself! Here is a cute little picture of my Toby being cute in the grass.

Yesterday was my first day as Awanas Sparks Director. With all of the duties involved with being a sparks director on top of my work at the studio and everything else I am doing, I was feeling a bit overwhelmed yesterday. On my google home page I have "Reminders From God." It seems that today's reminder was just what I needed to read! Thank you heavenly father for the constant reminders and using the internet as a tool to remind me!

Claim My power. Use it. If not, I withdraw it. Use it ceaselessly. You cannot ask too much. Never think you are too busy. As long as you get back to Me and replenish after each task no work can be too much. My Joy I give you. Live in it. Bathe your Spirit in it. Reflect it.

I just thought that was so cool! Always the perfect words just when I need them!

Brooke had her first Jr High Tennis match today. Poor thing had to play doubles with a guy against two other guys! She was devastated! However, she was extremely excited afterward because her team won! I had no idea how time consuming tennis was going to be! I will admit that I am totally dumb when it comes to the game of tennis. Clueless!!! I have much homework to do on the subject. I do know that you do NOT cheer! Luckily I learned this from hearing another mother get yelled at for cheering instead of experiencing it myself for once! least I know one other mother on the team that is totally clueless like me!

I was all dressed and ready for bed and my good seestah Lawanda stopped by and wanted me to go to Walmart with her! Sure why not....Walmart at midnight is always interesting! Especially when that mysterious hunger that I get in the middle of the night hits! I rebelled and bought some mint chocolate Dibs. Had never tried them but as we walked past the freezer they were just calling for me! Then Lawanda and I went looking for Emergen C. I woke up this morning with a very sore throat...last time I had a sore throat my dad told me to take Emergen C and it truly did help my throat in no time. We had to really SEARCH to find it at Walmart. But just in case you ever need to find it go to the vitamin aisle...across from the "old man urinals!" I am telling you Lawanda about wet her pants right there in the middle of Walmart at 12:30am! I can not believe that the box really said Old Man Urinal!! I looked, but they didn't have an old woman one....just a bunch of canes beside the Old Man ones. my stomach still hurts from laughing....well maybe eating half the box of Dibs has something to do with it too!

Lawanda needed a good laugh so I am glad I went with her. Keep her and her family in your prayers. Her grandma has been diagnosed with Luekemia. They are hoping that she will be able to make it home from the hospital. It is a two hour drive to get back home and they will be bringing her in an ambulance tomorrow(fri).

I will leave you with a pictureof Lawanda and I being goofy as usual! I just love that girl:)

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Awana and the Fire Alarm

Tonight was our first Awanas club meeting! I am the Sparks Director (k-2) so have been swamped the past two weeks getting everything ready for tonight! I spent the entire day today studying my bible lesson and preparing last minute things. The Awana Missionary warned us that our first club meeting would be chaotic. I am so happy that there was very little chaos! Everything went beautifully!

The kids learned the Sparks Motto tonight "My Friend For Christ". They also started learning John 3:16. I was so surprised that there were 3 or 4 children that could recite John 3:16 before the night ended!

I have some great leaders helping me out with our Sparks club! The best part of that is the friendships that we are building working together. I am so excited for what the future will bring both with the children and the leaders I am working with!

I am super impressed with the Awana club concept! We had a great turn out tonight for our very first awanas meeting at New Hope. I am not sure how many total in the entire Awana club but we had 12 children and 10 helpers in Sparks club!

I would call our first Sparks club meeting a smashing success! We were just finishing up at the end and getting children to their parents when we got a call that the fire alarm at Get Crafty Studios was going off! GRRRRRRR!!!!

My brother Matt had Christina's key to the studio and one of our assistants had my key! So I immediately freaked out thinking....oh no the fire dept will bust through the window again! They actually did bust through the window one time....but the fire was a sign on the outside!

Thankfully when we got there the fire dept was still on the outside of the building just waiting for us. My brother met us there with the key. They have no idea why the alarm went off but I have a feeling it has something to do with the electricity going off. They are working on sidewalks and stuff downtown all around us so for some reason the electric keeps going off. Anyways...that was my guess to the false alarm. I am just so happy it was a false alarm. I can't even begin to tell you the stress I was feeling as I traveled to the studio!

So I have my first Sparks meeting as the official Director under my belt! Now that we have an idea of how everything works I can only see it getting better and better! The kids are so excited about it and so am I! Being Director means alot of work added to my already pretty full plate...but I am excited...and it isn't work if you enjoy it!!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Great Color Combinations!

I just found the most awesone color site! It's called Kuler!!! If you have trouble matching up colors..or get stuck in the rut of using the same colors over and over.....this site will get you right out of that rut and give you endless possibilities! You can view thousands of beautiful color combos. There’s so many gorgeous choices and you can search by what’s Popular, Newest or Highest Rated.

You can even save the color schemes that you love by signing up for a free account. You can even go on to create and publish your own color schemes to share.

The perfect place to visit when you need a dash of professional colorization to liven things up a little!

Faith Sisters

I am so stinking excited about Faith Sisters that I can hardly sleep at night!

My friends Sunny, Karma and I have been feeling Gods call to do something BIG with faithbooking for the past two years at least. We keep saying well once this is done we will do this...or coming up with idea after idea and writing it down in a notebook. There is always something else big that comes up that distracts us from working on our faithbooking projects. It has been like this since we very first started talking about it.

We have watched several companies form carrying faithbooking products. We have seen magazine articles in the major scrapbooking publications on faithbooking. We have even seen faithbooking idea books being published. All the while we keep forming new ideas. I realized that God is not going to give us an idea and then wait until we can fit it into our schedule. When he gives us these ideas we need to act on them and carry them out. If we don't act he will move onto someone else that will act. We have already witnessed that several times now! God doesnt have to have us to carry out his plans!

Well we have learned some lessons. God showed me Faith Sisters in a dream! Seriously! Some of you might think I am nuts but I am totally serious! I had the most vivid dream about Faith Sisters and the things we were doing.

The really awesome part of it.....a month or so ago Sunny and I decided we were going to go ahead and buy a domain name. Sunny had come up with the name soul sisters and we totally loved it. Well it belongs to a porn site! YIKES! So we sat there that night thinking of ideas for our domain name. One of the next names we came up with was Faith Sisters. was taken as well. We went through probably 100 different names and then just kinda gave up.

Well in my dream we were called Faith Sisters! So when I woke up I was already discouraged because I knew that name had already been taken:( I got the kids ready and took them to school. Then while I in the car it hit me like a ton of bricks...I have to get home and check if faith sisters is available now! So I rushed back home...thank goodness there were no police officers out that morning! I turned on my computer and sure enough had expired! It was available for us to purchase! WOOHOOOO!!!!

God used that little proof of his power to build my faith in our new Faith Sisters journey! From that moment I realized that this was his plan.....these ideas were given to me by him and he wanted me to fulfill these plans for his purpose!

I immediately contacted my faith sister Karma. All along Sunny and I have said that Karma and Josie would have to be a part of this ministry with us. Karma got just excited as me and started working on our website immediately! We called Sunny and the three of us had a three way call that lasted most of the morning! No more putting this off until everything else is accomplished.

I know that God is going to use this ministry in a huge way. I can feel it in every ounce of my being! The ideas that he is filling our minds with could only come from him. It is amazing too how completely in tune the three of us are to everything! Karma and I keep bouncing ideas off each other and just get so stinkin excited everytime something new surfaces!

This is going to be an amazing journey! A journey that will end only in heaven! Or who knows...maybe it will just continue once we are there!! I pray that this ministry will touch the lives of many. I am already recieving blessings from the ministry in the way the Lord is opening my eyes to so many possibilities. The way scriptures are just speaking to me so boldly everytime I read them! Amazing! Gods word is alive...and it is awesome to see its power in action!

So get ready Faith Sisters! So many great ideas yet to come. So many more plans to put into action.....but we have started the journey instead of just talking about it! I know the Lord is pleased that we have finally taken him out of the backseat and put him in control of our busy schedules! I can not wait to see his plans for Faith Sisters continue to unfold!

By the way...we are currently building our Faith Sisters design team! Email me if you are interested in submitting!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Family Time

We had the best weekend. It wasn't that we really DID much....but we were with family. We really wanted to go camping but my little sister Julie was coming in from GA. Julie was all for going camping too but she also wanted to spend some time with Grandpa cause he isn't doing real well these days. With Dad's camper being 2 hours away it was impossible to camp and for Julie to see grandpa too. So we just decided to hang out at mom and dads.

Mom and Dad have their own little resort at their house anyway. The kids spent the weekend in the pool and riding their bikes while the adults visited and played Canasta! Dad went to Lowes and bought a great chimenea so we could have fires on the patio and roast marshmallows for Smores! It was so great. Grandma and Grandpa came over and stayed until around 10pm on Sat night and around 9pm on Sun night! Typically they only stay for a couple hours so we were pretty shocked! Apparently they really enjoyed themselves...and it was so great to be able to spend time with them.

Christina fixed sloppy joes for lunch Sat. We had hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill courtesy of Chef Brent Saturday evening. Christina fixed a not so lovely cake for desert to celebrate Stevin staying here this year. The cake kinda tasted like corn bread with icing. Grandpa said it was good "cough, cough" but gets stuck in your throat, "cough"!

Sunday we ate lunch at Caesars after church. For dinner we had a fun time preparing Eggplant Parmesian. I was the Master Chef and had several Assistants...Jessica and mom sliced the eggplant, Juile and I breaded and fried the eggplant, Christina browned and seasoned the meat, Chris was in charge of mixing the sauce and saucing the eggplant as we layered it into the pan. Chris was also the cheeser! Needless to say the eggplant parm was fabulous! Jessica made a very yummy salad...and thank goodness cause the eggplant took a little longer in the oven than planned....maybe because we had a quintupled batch...much larger than anything I had ever made! Oh yeah, Christina did better on desert for Sun night! Blackberry cobbler...she redeemed was yummy! Maybe she should stick with cobblers instead of made from scratch cakes! LOL

Monday we met brite and early at the Mountaineer for breakfast. Julie and Chris had to head back to GA so we said farewells to them in the parking lot. The rest of us headed back to Mom and Dad's. Immediately Brent and Chad, Mom and I started a game of Canasta while the kids swam. Brent and Chad were warned several times not to play against mom and I as a team....they were determined they could beat us! Well 4 hrs and two games later they were both walking around with slouched shoulders;) Chad had earned the name ACE for his crash play...he was sure he was going to block mom from picking up and threw her the exact card she ACE...He was so mad at himself!!! Mom and I can't be beat!

Grill Master Matt made hamburgers and hotdogs for dinner. Jessica and Brooke made Brownies with a new twist for icing. After dinner we cleaned up the "resort" and everyone headed home around 6ish.

Once Chad and I got home he had the idea to play canasta again...I think he thought he could beat me without mom..poor guy! LOL He was very discouraged. The score was 3930 to 6135! LOL He said he may play against me again someday but after being beat three times in a row it kinda hurts your self confidence. Maybe I should have let him win a game??? Poor thing!

I am sad for the weekend to be over. It was just so much fun! I can't wait till all of my family can be together again!!

Sunday, September 02, 2007


I consider myself a prayer warrior. I may not have an hour carved out each day to spend in prayer, but I consider myself in continual prayer throughout the day. I pray all throughout the day every day. I know that God wants to have a relationship with me and not just in a certain hour of the day everyday. I talk to my closest friends sometimes several times a day. If I am not on the phone with them then I am instant messaging or emailing them! That is why they are my closest friends! I have constant dialogue with them. Why then should I not have a constant dialogue with my heavenly father?

I used to feel an extreme amount of guilt because I had this belief of what prayer time should look like. To me the perfect prayer time would be waking up early in the morning and spending an hour in prayer, and reading my bible, keep in mind I am a night owl. I am a little like Martha in the Bible, I have lots to do—office work, writing projects, scrapbook projects and deadlines, laundry, mom’s taxi, tutor, substitute teacher, cooking, cleaning. I have always had this dream of starting my days out with prayer and devotion time and then feel guilty because it doesn’t happen. Then one day God revealed to me that while spending an hour in prayer every morning is fabulous, there is nothing wrong with my prayer life.

I do in fact start my days in prayer. Before I get out of bed each morning I say a little prayer , usually something along this line, "thank you Lord for this day. Please bless me and my family. Put a hedge of protection around us. Let your will be done in each of our lives today. Let us focus on you amidst everything else that we will do." The Lord delights in my prayers even if they are short ones! Scripture says he "inclines his ear" and is "open to hear" my prayers (Psalm 40:1 34:15). I am so thankful to have that guilt washed away and very thankful for the realization that the Lord encourages continual prayer (1 Thessalonians 5:17). No more thoughts of But I can't pray long enough, or If I can't pray one hour, then why pray? God used short prayers to accomplish huge things in the bible, such as parting the red sea! It's wonderful to have longer sessions of prayer when I can, but remembering that my short prayers can have a big impact encourages me to pray throughout the day.

Here is what my continual dialogue of prayer with the Lord kinda looks like! I pray a short prayer before I get out of bed. While I get breakfast for my children I pray for them. When I buckle up in the car I also pray for safety and the path to be prepared before me. Often times I see something that prompts me to pray. For example, when I pass by a school I ask God to protect the students and to give all the teachers wisdom. When I see a wreck I immediately pray for the people in it and for the doctors at the hospital. Seeing something beautiful reminds me to pray a prayer of thankfullness for Gods creations. Anytime that I think of a friend or someone who has been sick I send a prayer up for them. When I am heading to a meeting I pray for favor with those at the meeting, wisdom, discernment and blessings. When someone cuts me off on the road, jumps in front of me in line, or does something else equally as rude I have trained myself to calm down and say a prayer for them. When I have a dream about someone I say a prayer for them. If I wake up in the night and have someone on my mind I say a prayer for them. If I am getting ready to write an article I pray that God will give me the words. I kinda just pray all the time without even realizing it most of the time....that is just the kind of relationship I have with my heavenly father!

When I do find longer portions of time for prayer I often find my mind will wander. I read an article in Christian Womens magazine that gave me a tool for counteracting my wandering mind! I use the acronym B-L-E-S-S as I pray for my family and friends. Each letter in the acronym stands for a key area of life: Body, Labor, Emotional, Social, and Spiritual.

For example, when Brooke went from homeschooling to starting 7th grade in the public school, I prayed:
"Lord, bless Brooke’s body; strengthen and protect her during school. Bless her labor; help her to pay attention,learn, and do her best. Give her wisdom. Bless Brooke’s emotional life; help her trust and look to you for guidance in everything. Father, bless Brooke’s social relationships; bring her Christian friends and teachers at school. And bless her spiritual life; help her draw near to you and your Word more and more each day."

Prayer is how I know God, not just know about him; it's how I hear God. Time after time, when I pour out my problems, burdens, and concerns, I experience his peace, hope, love and faithfulness more clearly. I experience his comfort in trials, his unfailing love as I see him provide for the needs that I've prayed.

E.M. Bounds, a 19th-century pastor, said, "Your prayers will outlive your life." Long after my address has changed to heaven, the short prayers I've said while cooking dinner, working on the computer, or moving throughout my day, still will be a blessing to those for whom I've prayed.