Romans 12:1-2

So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. Romans 12:1-2

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Colorado Second Half

After visiting family in Denver, Hubby had to be at a conference in Colorado Springs so the boys and I were faced with filling a couple of days - not a difficult thing to do at all!

We visited Focus on the Family and used the Imagination Station (aka the elevator) to go to Odyssey. Wow! This is what we had been looking forward to and it did not disappoint. We played and played - that's me dressed up like "Connie". I even did the 76 ft. bendy slide. We recorded an episode of Adventures in Odyssey (that has played in our car several times already!) and ate at Whit's End. M says he wishes we could get this chocolate soda everywhere, it's the best!

I forced the boys to do a little shopping with me before we went to the Olympic Training Center. It was a really cool day to be there - exactly one year before London 2012! To celebrate they were passing out fish and chips (see the photo for full understanding). Besides the recording at Odyssey, this was the boys' favorite. L. was especially mesmerized by the wrestling and weight training gym.

Wed. night we were able to accompany Hubby with fellow conference attendees for a cowboy dinner and western music show. Before dinner we watched Indian dancers and the boys practiced their lasso skills. It was a wonderful evening.

The next morning the boys and I spent a couple of hours at the Air Force Academy before picking Hubby up to head home. Even if we weren't leaving on a "big" vacation, we could call our time in Colorado a wonderful vacation. Hubby and I want to go back - he has to experience the great things we did and we didn't even make it to all the wonderful outdoor things there! (Side note: with the exception of the Flying W Ranch for dinner - everything the boys and I did was free!)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Colorado First Half

We spent a long weekend in Denver with family and had such a wonderful visit. They said having company gave them an excuse to do activities/things they haven't seen yet. They were wonderful tour guides!

On Saturday we went to a wildlife refuge. My little camera doesn't do them justice, but right now I don't have access to Uncle J's wonderful photos. In addition to these tigers, we saw bears, wolves and Bolivian lions. A lot of the day was spent with the cousins playing. Perhaps that was best of all - hearing their laughter! We ended the day with all you can eat delicious Italian food. I'm not a big Olive Garden fan, but Cinzetti's was wonderful - fried zucchini and bruschetta you can't beat!

We spent Sunday in the mountains riding a train and touring a mine. Besides the beautiful views and sheer delight, we loved the cool, cool weather. What a relief to what we have at home!

Hubby the boys and I took Cousin M to the aquatic center on Monday. Wow, Colorado water is much colder than what we have! You can tell in the picture that Cousin M is freezing! We all enjoyed the not so lazy river and the bigger boys liked seeing if they could flip the raft with me on the slides. Little did they know I am quite talented at preventing flipping in anything that has to do with water. We ended our time in Denver with a quick trip by the park and visiting Uncle J at his work. We had lunch at the 16th street mall downtown. Downtown in such a big city is quite an experience for suburbanites such as us....

For a long time I haven't used many pictures on my blog or they have been from others. On this trip we fixed our camera problem (which was battery) and I just downloaded over 300 pictures from the week! When I was considering writing a wrap up of our trip, I realized it was way too much to do just one. I'll have to do Colorado Springs later.

We have to get busy with more laundry and some errands (for a suitcase and sunglasses) before leaving again tomorrow. I am so thankful for Aunt being a willing house/dog sitter!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Multitudes - July 18

I was so close to getting L. to guest blog and post some of the things from his thankful journal, but he smiled and decided not to. Maybe one day....

Here are mine:
466. Raindrops on the window one day
467. A steady rain the next
468. Flowers finally blooming
469. M. making brownies on his own
470. Hubby home earlier than I thought
471. Going to the pool with new friends (and being a friend even though they are leaving)
472. L. saying “Wow! Look at the moon!”
473. How big and close the moon was
474. Being the only ones at the pool
475. Hubby relaxing with us
476. Baptism
477. Looking at travel books
478. Eagerness
479. Waking up together
480. A trip out for frozen yogurt (gingerbread yogurt!)
481. The 59th floor
482. A thankful son

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Daybook - July 16

Outside my window… water rationing, ozone alert, excessive heat warning

I am thankful for… an understanding Hubby

I am wearing… black sport shorts, grey Race for the Cure t-shirt

Some plans for the rest of the week… last week of football camp for M and VBS for L, haircut, a couple of lunches, lots of laundry and packing

I am hoping … that my body quits aching from yoga soon!

On my mind… things that need to be done to prepare for trips and school starting; also Aunt coming home and Hubby and the boys in Joplin

Hearing…. the birds were quite chattery a moment ago and I’m thankful for this sound – the air conditioner!

I am praying for… requests sent from a friend, my attitude and contentment in the waiting

From the kitchen….. T-tortellini salad, Th-ham and cream cheese wrapped asparagus & mashed potatoes, F- kabobs & grilled veggies, S-grilled chicken & whatever I decide to make with it!

Around the house… the closets are getting cleaned today! M already did his (maybe only because I took everything out that was not on a hanger or was trash and laid on his bed or the floor)

One of my favorite things…. the smell of lavender, playing cards with L, the smiles of both my boys

From my picture journal… This photo is of M and me with author, Todd Burpo. We went to hear him speak about Heaven is for Real a while back. Hubby and I read the book around Christmas, L. just finished it and M. is almost through.

To view more daybooks visit Simple Woman's Daybook.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Flying to Texas to Be With Cousin

Hubby, the boys and I were in Texas for the 4th of July. Then Hubby left and the boys and I stayed with family, then I went to stay with a friend, Hubby came back, he and L. flew home and M and I drove home. Our van hit a milestone on the way to the airport (I drove my car, not the van!) The week was filled with baseball, movies, and lots of time in the pool. What a great week of summer and now we're gearing up for more...

Multitudes - July 12

437. Seeing old friends
438. Finding something I needed 60% off
439. Reading
440. Cooling off in a pool when it’s so very hot
441. Dropping in on a former neighbor
442. The smell of sunscreen
443. Surviving driving in rush hour in Dallas
444. Getting to visit all day and all evening
445. Lights in fountains
446. Cranberries in salads
447. God’s love – it’s because of Him that I can love
448. K. thanking God for the kittens and each food specifically
449. The sun on the lake about 8 pm
450. Hubby showing up
451. Watching sailboats in a regatta
452. Sunsets
453. Fig Newton cranberry cookie thins
454. Being near each other
455. Sweet texts
456. A friend to talk with late in the night
457. Water spray
458. A warm welcome
459. Looks of surprise
460. Watching a family story grow and get sweeter
461. Turtle family sunning on the bank
462. Glimmer
463. Errands done
464. Seeing a friend at the store
465. More days

Monday, July 4, 2011


Primal: A Quest for the Lost Soul of Christianity is amazing! It is a book of Spiritual Disciplines for our generation. I’m not sure the author would appreciate that description, but hear me out. In college, my Spiritual Discipline class and the book we used were foundational in my spiritual quest. Too often, those engaging in spiritual disciplines are (or they become) doing so for the sake of checking them off a list (either a to do list or a list of “if I do these then I’ll be spiritual”). Primal gets down to the core of disciplines – to Love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. Author, Mark Batterson thoroughly outlines what that looks like by explaining, describing, and enticing us to rediscover compassion, wonder, curiosity, and energy.

I love how he challenges us to rethink what loving God looks like and how he persuades us to live out our Christian life in today’s culture. Two of my favorite chapters are on wonder – the miracles around us and the wonder of Scripture. It was a perfect complement to another book I’m reading on being thankful. Primal contains a discussion guide and would make a wonderful book for a small group study. It is a must read for those wanting to grow deeper in their relationship with Christ.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Multitudes on Mondays - Happy 4th of July!

395. Many tastes, colors and kinds of food
396. Shape of the oak leaf
397. Purple
398. Fill dirt - fixed holes
399. Morning talks with hubby
400. Realization - it's not that I just have a few weeks of summer at home left, God has graced us with so many gifts and given all that I wanted summer to be.
401. Monkey in the Middle
402. Able to do that even though my body is really sore
403. Sleeping in
404. Items crossed off the to do list
405. Free book - Primal
406. The way the house smells when I'm cooking barbecue
407. Finally getting the clothes on the couch folded
408. Sharing fireworks with friends
409. Seeing fireworks poolside
410. Seedless watermelon
411. Safe travels
412. Sharing frozen strawberry lemonade
413. God's grace
414. A place to be
415. Cucumbers
416. Playing
417. Sharing fireworks with family
418. 3 boys swimming in the lake
419. Same boys in matching tshirts
420. A cat keeping company
421. Leadership
422. Watching corn on the cob popcorn pop in the microwave
423. Being in Texas
424. Floating in the pool
425. He's here
426. Experience and guidance
427. Safe landing
428. Mechanical help
429. The hand of God
430. Cousins washing a car
431. Morning to read and write
432. 38 years for Hubby
433. Banana chocolate chip muffins
434. New tires
435. Freedom - the kind I have by being an American
436. Freedom in Christ
On My Front Porch

Daybook - First Week of July

Outside my window…darkness and heat still. Probably that way at home too. I’m blogging “on location”.

I am thankful for… my boys being with their cousin, a sister who prays and safety

I am wearing… jean shorts, sleeveless buttonup shirt

Some plans for the rest of the week… seeing friends, swimming, making t-shirts with a bleach design (on purpose)

I am hoping … the new book I ordered is here before we leave on vacation (Having my passport by then would be nice too!).

On my mind… how seriously off this line spacing is! Oh, well.
Hearing…. the washing machine

I am praying for… a quick, easy, inexpensive resolution to some mechanical difficulties

From the kitchen….. La Madeline

Around the house… ?????. I’m not home and I STILL have laundry to fold!

One of my favorite things… a change from the normal routine

From my picture journal…

Hubby takes good care of our home. In this photo you can also see the bushes he transplanted to the corner of the yard in order to make room for some flowers. Outside of the yard is our common green space - one of the reasons we wanted this house.