Saturday, April 28, 2012

It Ain't Suga' Plums & Roses

Here's some great advice I have learned and continue to remind myself of.  There's no sense in complaining to others- half the time their thinking how they can one up you and the other half they are wishing they could talk about the good in life rather than the bad in yours.

I'll just be honest right now there is a lot I could complain about.  I'm sure you can imagine with two kids 12 months a part, a new business, a very large yard :) and just life in general my list of complaints can get quite long some days.  BUT just as I'm writing this I think about.....
The woman who has TWINS AND a toddler
A friend of mine who has been through more tragedy the last few years than I will probably see in a lifetime.
The one who goes to sleep each night aching for their little boy who is still thousands of miles away
The grandma who can't remember what day it is or what she was planning on doing 10 minutes ago
The mom who has a full time job, teaches at the University, has a speaking engagement at least once a month, stays up all night with her grandkids to give her daughter a chance to get rest and still manages to keep her home looking like it's out of a Pottery Barn magazine

The list could go on and on.  The fact is there is always something to complain about in life.  Like they say- Life ain't always suga' plums and roses, but by golly sometimes it's waterfalls and little white chapels.  Sometimes it's my lil man wrapping his sweet little arms around my neck and patting my back.  Sometimes it's someone telling me I'm a good mom.  Sometimes it's looking out my window at my oh so gorgeous husband on his John Deere.  Sometimes it's realizing my in laws love me like their own.  Sometimes it's a helping hand when I have nothing to give in return.  Sometimes life is so real and so close to heaven I can feel God's hand in mine and Him saying, "I trust you.  I trust you with all these precious things I've given you."

So why complain?  Why remind ourselves of the bad when there is OH SO MUCH GOOD! I'm reminded tonight that I AM LOVING LIFE!  I am so thankful for the blessings I've been given and in those times when I begin the play out the complaints in my mind I pray I will start crossing them off and writing down my blessings next to them. For that list is never ending each and every day.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

BIG Easter Thanks!

Where do I even begin to thank everyone who helped me over the Easter weekend?  Well, I think I'll start from the beginning.  My husband, mom and dad were involved from the get go!  They jumped on board with this picture I had in my mind of creating a full weekend of activities for Easter.  Little did they know how much work would be involved :)  The picture God had given us was a weekend to be "Immersed in His love".  I truly felt like I was immersed in His love all because of some wonderful people who stepped up to the plate.  My parents went above and beyond to make sure that we had everything we needed to make this a special weekend.  They were behind the scenes helping plan the events, making flyers, running errands, purchasing candy for the eggs, making the coffee, putting together decorations, watching my kids, oh the list could go on and on.  My husband spent every day before work getting the grounds beautiful- mowing the lawn, trimming bushes, removing ALL the cactus, setting up chairs/tables, and much more.  My brother was out in the FREEZING cold scrubbing down the chairs.  He spent practically his whole spring break out here helping us get rid of ALL the cactus.  His lawn mowing skills were put to the test as he mowed our lawn, which looked gorgeous.  Grandpa Gray spent countless hours digging holes for the ivy, trimming bushes and trees.  All of this to make Still Water Hollow absolutely perfect for the weekend.

Tim, Erin and their kids pulled in early Friday morning (3am to be exact).  As they all rolled out of their van and into their beds to finish the nights rest they all had smiles on their faces and excitement for the weekend ahead. Tim and Erin made the weekend so meaningful with their testimony and Tim's message on Easter Sunday was so inspiring!  Audrey and Savannah helped take care of my boys while I accomplished tasks throughout the weekend and Lily made my boys giggle while I was busy.  Savannah captured some beautiful moments on Easter Sunday that I am sure have brought many of you joy as you look through the photo's posted on Still Water Hollow.  Overall their entire family was such a blessing to many of us.  We so appreciate their willingness to drive all the way from Oregon encouraging us and teaching us more about God's amazing ways!

Jake VP, Jake Englehorn, Troy Ferguson and Nell Hill took time out of their Good Friday to use their amazing talents during our Worship Night.  We had so much fun practicing, eating chili together and using music to celebrate that wonderful day.  Heather Beam also came early on Good Friday to make sure everyone who walked into that little white chapel felt welcomed and loved!

Tausha and Mary helped me tremendously on Saturday.  There were many tasks to complete to make the Couple's Night a success and they put the pedal to the metal.  Mary also shared that she will be a "Still Water Bride" this summer during the Couple's Night, which is now my favorite phrase :).  It was such a blessing to get to know her better and I was so touched that she was willing to help us make this event so wonderful.  I also really appreciate Tausha, who found someone to watch her three kids, so that she could spend pretty much all day out here.  She took such a huge load off my shoulders!  Not to mention it's always more fun to work when you have someone right by your side.

Gabe & Michelle Dean....WOW! They made THE MOST delicious dinner for our Couple's Night.  I could have gone back to the buffet line until they had to roll me out of the reception hall.  They spent so much time, energy and love into making the meal incredible and I heard many raves about it Saturday Night.  I think I can speak for everyone when I say that was one of the best parts of the evening.  Tim used his talents that evening to make us laugh, encourage us in our marriages and challenge us to ask God for more.  It was wonderful to look around the room and see everyone enjoying their spouses as well as the company at their tables.

My Grandma, Robyn and the Forrest family all spent their Saturday evening helping me by watching my boys.  There's nothing like placing your children in the hands of people you trust when you have to be away from them.  I know how difficult it can be to watch two little ones who are only a year apart and it means the world to me that they all were so willing to do so.  They also did a great job of wearing them out because they slept for 6 hours straight- I desperately was needing that 6 hours!

On Sunday Joan came out to help hide all of the Easter eggs for us.  She has such a heart for childrean and I know the joy in those kids faces must have been rewarding for her.  This was quite the task considering there were over 400 eggs, I believe.  Kapree also came to help hide the eggs and she made a last minute trip for us to help keep the flies away :) Shelly, Rhonda, The Weathers, Gayle, my Grandma and many others brought yummy desserts.  I wish I knew who all brought desserts, but just know that I am so very thankful.

This weekend was very powerful for me.  I've felt this huge desire to have events out here that bring Glory to God and that bring joy to families.  To see all the smiling faces, all the laughter, the friendships made and the happiness that exuded from each and every one of you who attended was the biggest blessing to me!  I'm so thankful that God showed up this weekend.  He made a statement and I truly believe that He showed how deeply he loves us all in the beauty he blessed us with.  Thank you to each and every one of you who felt God calling you to be a part of this.  You have no idea how deeply touched I am that you would step up and go above and beyond to help make this last weekend so meaningful.