Monday, December 13, 2010

Church Yesterday

We had a guest pastor speak at church yesterday. I can't stop thinking about something he said in his message:

"God will take you where you hadn't intended to go in order to produce in you something you could not have achieved on your own."

December 18 marks two years since my Mom's disease took us on a different, unexpected journey. To say I wish I didn't know anything about a journey like this would be an understatement. But I do, and life presses on.

I am thankful that He sends these reminders to bring back the eternal perspective I so often lack.

(Sermon by Paul David Trip: Mark 6:45-51)


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Missing Her

It's usually late at night, when it's dark, and the world quiets down. That's when I miss her the most.






-5.3 million - As many as 5.3 million people in the United States are living with Alzheimer's. That means we all know someone who is dealing with this.
-70 seconds - Every 70 seconds, someone develops Alzheimer's.
-100% - Alzheimer's disease is always fatal.

Info taken from: http://www.crowdrise.com/kickalzheimers/fundraiser/sethrogen


Thursday, November 11, 2010

10 Years Together










Reid and I started dating after a winter formal at my high school. Reid went to another private school in Little Rock, and we met through a mutual friend. The exact time that we met is a bit fuzzy for Reid. He doesn't remember meeting me at Sophomore Formal, but I, in fact, remember him. We liked each other for a few months, everyone knew, I finally was the bigger person and asked him to my dance, and the rest is history.


Playing Catch-Up

Where does time go? No seriously, where does it go? It feels like the past few months have flown by, and we're starting to make a mad dash to the holidays. I thought I'd give a recap (more for myself) of what we've been up to this fall.

We've enjoyed some "cooler" weather, getting to know some new friends even better, and lazy days together when Reid is home. In September I celebrated my 26Th birthday. I celebrated with friends during my birthday week... I'm so thankful to have such good friends here! That weekend Reid surprised me with dinner at Hattie's in the Bishop Arts District. We've introduced our good friend Ryan (who moved here in August for business school) to some of our favorite restaurants - Bread Winners, Blue Goose, and Louie's to name a few! We traveled to Cincinnati for Trevor and Cori's October wedding where we were able to spend time with family and friends. I made a trip home to Little Rock for my parents anniversary last week. Samson turned 11 months old. And, Reid and I celebrated 10 years together (dated almost 6, married almost 4) on November 10. I'm sure I'll write a few extra posts to play catch-up, but here are a few pictures from the last couple of months.

Dinner at Hattie's
Birthday dinner at Gloria's
Me and Laila Almefty at the rehearsal dinner
More rehearsal dinner
Samson at 11 months ;)



Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

When It Rains, It Pours

Dallas has had quite a bit of rainfall the last two days. There has been some flooding, but it doesn't seem to be nearly as bad as some surrounding cities. I was driving home this afternoon (on auto-pilot as usual) and took the street by our house that was closed. It was crazy to see water, not only covering the road, but flowing pretty fast. What was even more weird is that there wasn't any warning that the road was closed. But, that's Dallas for you.







Thursday, September 2, 2010

July 2006

Trying to remember this today...

"To endure the cross is not tragedy; it is the suffering which is the fruit of an exclusive allegiance to Jesus Christ." - Bonhoeffer

Some days I wish I could go back in time. I miss her big hugs, her reassuring voice, and even her really loud sneezes. I miss my mom.

July 2006

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Mighty Fortress

I sang "A Mighty Fortress" for the first time this past summer. I had heard it before, but the words didn't resonate until I read them. My favorite part is the fourth stanza (I would recommend the version by Chris Rice). There is such powerful Truth in these simple words. Its amazing that God can use a hymn written in the 1500's to continue to prune my wicked heart.


That word above all earthly pow'rs --
No thanks to them abideth;
The Spirit and the gifts are ours
Thru Him who with us sideth.
Let goods and kindred go,
This mortal life also;
The body they may kill:
God's truth abideth still --
His kingdom is forever.


That word above all earthly pow'rs --

"13 And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and His Name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which were in Heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 15 And out of His Mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations: and He shall rule them with a rod of iron: and He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And He hath on His Vesture and on His Thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS" (Revelation 19:13-16).

No thanks to them abideth;

"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him" (1John 2:15).

The Spirit and the gifts are ours

"Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost" (Acts 2:38).

Thru Him who with us sideth.

"The LORD is with you, while ye be with Him; and if ye seek Him, He will be found of you" (2Chronicles 15:2).

Let goods and kindred go,

"26 If any man come to Me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. 27 And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after Me, cannot be My disciple. 33 So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be My disciple" (Luke 14:26-27, 33).

This mortal life also;

"Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my LORD: for Whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ" (Philippians 3:8).

The body they may kill:

"7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the Beast that ascendeth out of the Bottomless Pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. 11 And after three days and an half the Spirit of Life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them" (Revelation 11:7, 11).

God's truth abideth still --

"For the Truth's sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever" (2John 2).

His kingdom is forever.

"Thine, O LORD is the Greatness, and the Power, and the Glory, and the Victory, and the Majesty: for all that is in the Heaven and in the Earth is Thine; Thine is the Kingdom, O LORD, and Thou art exalted as Head above all" (1Chronicles 29:11).

"And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory, for ever. Amen" (Matthew 6:13).

"Now unto the King Eternal, Immortal, Invisible, the Only Wise God, be Honour and Glory for ever and ever. Amen" (1Timothy 1:17).

"15 Which in His times He shall shew, Who is the Blessed and Only Potentate, the KING of Kings, and LORD of Lords; 16 Who only hath Immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; Whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to Whom be Honour and Power Everlasting. Amen." (1Timothy 6:15-16).

http://www.whatsaiththescripture.com/Poetry/A-Mighty-Fortress.html

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Jan's Story


I just heard about the book, Jan's Story, written by her husband and CBS News journalist Barry Petersen. I looked him up, and found this video. I thought I'd share it for those who are interested.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

PBK

Image from http://www.potterybarnkids.ca/home

I have a job! I'll be working at Pottery Barn Kids starting the first of September. I wanted to find something that gave me the flexibility to still go to Little Rock when I need to, but that also kept my weekends free for time with Reid. I went into the store last week on a whim, not knowing if they would want to hire someone with those preferences, and it worked out! I'll be working part time, and will be scheduled to be "on call" just one weekend day a month. I'm so excited to add some structure back to my life. It really couldn't be more perfect!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Samson & His Ottoman

Before we ever brought Samson home we made the decision not to let him get on the furniture. We had no problem following the rule until about a month ago when we bought the ottoman that matched our den furniture. Samson was immediately interested in it, and slowly made his move to claim it as his own. And, of course, we couldn't say no.






















-- Post From My iPhone

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Suffering


I haven't written much about my mom lately. There really isn't a rhyme or reason. Sometimes I feel like I go through seasons of grief. I either need to write about it or I don't. When I don't write I seem to talk about it more. I'm happy with that for now.

I found this post on the Proverbs 31 Ministries blog and felt like they were writing directly from my heart. It is so much of what I've learned and continue to learn from my mom. She's shown me a different way to look at suffering. I still struggle with the "why" of it all. Probably because it seems to be too simple an answer. I want to know how this will be used for His glory. I want to know so I can make sure that the "now" is worth it in the end. Then I'm reminded of how worldly my outlook is, and I pray that my spiritual sight would return. Thankfully, He is always faithful.
A Different Way to Look at Suffering
Micca Monda Campbell

"'Neither this man nor his parents sinned,' said Jesus, 'but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.'" John 9:3 (NIV)

Jesus had a unique way of clearing up misconceptions by helping people see truth as it was meant to be. For example, in John 9 we find Jesus refuting the traditional explanation of suffering when His disciples point to a man born blind and ask, "Who sinned, this man or his parents?" In other words, they wanted to know Why did he deserve blindness? Jesus answers frankly, "Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life."

The disciples looked backwards to find out why the man was blind. Jesus redirects their attention by pointing forward and upward with a new and different perspective.

Usually, our response to challenges or suffering is determined by our perspective. When our focus is inward on ourselves or outward on circumstances, our natural response is fear, insecurity, grumbling and despair. I know. I've been there far too often. Have you?

Yet, Jesus redirects our questions and our focus. In doing so, it causes us to see suffering in a new light that disproves the old tradition. Not all suffering is a direct result of sin. Pain has a higher purpose in our lives. It's not necessarily there because we deserve it. It's to reveal God's glory.

Suffering is meant to refine us. James says it makes us "perfect and complete, lacking in nothing" (1:4b, ESV). Pain drives us to seek the heart and will of God.

Perhaps you and I have been going at it all wrong. We've been looking backwards in the rearview mirror of life asking, "Why? What did I do to deserve this?" Instead, we should look forward and up asking, "What's the purpose of my pain? What's the end result? What is God trying to do, accomplish, or teach me?"

These types of questions enable us to hold out hope for the future. They remind us our suffering can be transformed or redeemed. Tragedies and hardships like the loss of a spouse, a child, a limb, a job, or a home can be used to display God's work and make us more like Jesus.

Isn't it time you and I looked up? An upward focus brings about a supernatural response that reflects trust and confidence in God, as He brings about His glorious work in each of us.

Dear Lord, give me a new perspective today. Help me see the real meaning of my suffering. Enable me to trust You with the good work You are accomplishing in my life through this pain. I long for You to be glorified in this trial. Give me the strength I need to make that happen. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
http://proverbs31devotions.blogspot.com/2009/09/different-way-to-look-at-suffering.html

Sunday, August 8, 2010

A few favorites

I've been a terrible blogger this summer. But, I was going through some of the pictures I've taken and thought I'd share a few of my favorites.


Summer vacation in Puerto Vallarta

Mom and Dad on a walk at the nursing home

Sunset in West Little Rock as I was leaving the nursing home.

Samson playing in the sprinklers at my parents house in Little Rock

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Healthier Key Lime Pie


Today we had a few friends over to watch the final game of the World Cup. For dessert I made Key Lime Pie from a recipe I saw in the July issue of Southern Living (I actually made the same recipe last night, too). It uses some healthier alternatives to the standard baking ingredients and is still SO good! I thought I'd share!

Key Lime Pie
1 (14-oz.) can fat-free sweetened condensed milk (the first time I made it I used regular, and there actually isn't much difference in taste!)
3/4 cup egg substitute
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (I do half bottled and half fresh squeezed when I make 2 pies. I was a little more liberal with the bottled lime juice today and I think it tasted better.)
2 tsp. Key lime zest (regular fresh lime juice and zest may be substituted)
1 (6-oz.) reduced fat ready made graham cracker crust
1 (8-0z.) container fat-free frozen whipped topping, thawed

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together first 4 ingredients until well blended. Pour mixture into piecrust; place pie on baking sheet.
2. Bake for 17 minutes or until pie is set. Remove pie from baking sheet to a wire rack, and let pie cool completely (about an hour).
3. Chill 3 to 24 hours. Top with whipped topping just before serving. Garnish if desired.
*I actually let mine chill with the topping and "garnish".
*Serves 8

Saturday, July 10, 2010

BBQ

Tonight we had some friends over for a little BBQ. It was our first official night to entertain in our house, so that was fun! I'm trying to get better about taking pictures, but of course didn't think about getting my camera out until after the Pardues had already left. But, I stole a pic of them from Facebook for good measure, and I resolve to do better next time.

The Pardue Fam

Saylor

Me, Caroline, Abbi, and Erica

Matching in our purple

Me and Reido

Annabelle and Mary Wesley



The Smith Family

Mary Marshall and Kyle were one of the first couples that we met when we moved to Dallas. Kyle and Reid were staffed locally, and MM and Kyle were newlyweds, too! There were team dinners, double dates, a holiday party, dinners with MM when the guys were traveling, an OW Summer BBQ, and much more!

Two years ago they moved to the Middle East to join the Dubai office and we've missed them dearly! About a year ago we got a fun email announcement that said they were pregnant... With twins... And moving to Zurich! WOW! So, two years later we we able to hug their necks (Reid actually got to hang out with them while he was staffed in Zurich last Fall/Winter) and meet sweet Annabelle and Mary Wesley!

(I'm sick I forgot my camera!)



Love this one of Kyle and Gabe feeding the girls.


Thursday, July 8, 2010

10 Favorite Things

Michelle did a post of her "10 Favorite Things" of summer and I thought I'd share mine (in no particular order, but the first. ;)

1. Summer weekends with Reid

2. Hummus

3. Crossfit - So glad I finally went back, even if its only been a week!

4. Sonic un-sweet tea with Splenda

5. Central Market's Italian Cream Cake - Hello lover.

6. Sushi

7. "Cool" mornings with Samson at White Rock

8. Traveling - Puerta Vallarta in a little more than a week!

9. Hanging out with friends and family


10. Mad Men - We love having a series to watch together and needed a new one since Lost ended.