Thursday, May 29, 2008

B&B Food is great!

Since Claude is using our scenery pics at the website, I decided to post pics of the FABULOUS breakfasts that we've received from the B&B owners, Carol & Dina. 
Here you go:
Day1  -  Baked pear 

Orange Pecan French Toast w/sausage links

Day2  -  Fresh Fruit w/cream (wild clover for the garnish!)

Ham, Egg & Potato Souffle w/ Croissant & blackberry preserves

Day 3  - Yogurt w/blueberries & granola 

Belgian Waffles w/strawberries & sausage

I must say that this is the fanciest and the tastiest food I've ever had!  It's beautiful when it's brought out to the table and it tastes SO WONDERFUL!
Also, every day we've been here, they've made some sort of "goodies" for us!  The first day was homemade chocolate chip cookies!  Yesterday was strawberry pecan bread.  Today was homemade cinnamon apple pecan squares (which Claude "hid" from me in the drawer of his nightstand).  Everything is soooo good!  I'm getting spoiled!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Good food, good neighbors

We were just brought 2 plates of crepes from our neighbors, Sandy & Jennifer.  I haven't had crepes since I was a little girl and my mom fixed them for us!  This is what the crepes looked like when Sandy brought them over:

Doesn't it look delicious?!?!?  Well, they were!  It was covered with powdered sugar and stuffed with strawberries and cream!  It was our "dinner", but Claude says that you can't have something this sweet and delectable for dinner!  Anyway, they were so good.  Apparently our neighbor is a bit of a chef, she just doesn't let anyone know!

This is what it looked like when we were done eating the crepes!  

As Claude would say: "More please!"

NC mountains here we come!

Tomorrow morning we will be heading to Waynesville, NC.  Now, when I say early, I MEAN EARLY, like 5AM!  Claude is doing a "job" for his brother's company (out of Tampa) and the lady he'll be doing the work for owns a B&B up here.  So, she is paying Claude in room & board for a couple nights!  We still had a little bit left on the gift certificate we received from our wonderful church family so we are applying it to a 3rd night!  I am SO EXCITED!  I haven't been to the mountains since 1998!  WOW, it's hard to believe that TEN YEARS have gone by already.  I remember so much about that trip!  We are really looking forward to this trip though!  It's always nice to be able to take a few days and spend it alone!  


See you in about 5 days!!!!!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

A couple of things on my mind

First, I am missing my husband bunches right now!  I just got off the phone with him.  He is still in Washington DC but will be home tomorrow!  I guess some folks like time alone/away from their spouses.  I guess I am tremendously blessed because I LOVE being with my spouse!  I love spending time with him, talking to him, hanging out in the garage with him, going out with him, staying at home with him, etc...  We honestly love spending as much time together as we can.  It makes me sad for people who don't feel that way about their spouse.  I mean, the Bible talks about leaving your parents home and becoming one with your spouse.  My husband is my best friend!  Thank you Lord, for a God-fearing husband who loves me, but loves You even more! 

Second, I am grateful for a church that I love and for the leadership in the church.  I may not always agree with decisions made, I may not always like the hours needed to make things happen, but I love Jason.  I respect him as a pastor, but more as a person.  He's real.  He makes mistakes, but he owns up to them.  He tries with his whole heart to follow where God is leading our church.  He has days when he's "blah" just like the rest of us.  (he teases too much, but it kinda reminds me of my brother, so I'm ok with that!!!)  JUST KIDDING!  Seriously though, it's hard for me to just trust someone to make decisions for me, but I am learning that Jason tries hard to make sure the decisions he makes are based on where God is leading.  He will surely mess up from time to time because he's human.  I'm just glad that the weight/burden of the decisions he has to make fall on him and not me! 

Last, I was reading Philippians tonight at small group and something just stuck in my head and I couldn't seem to get past it.  Philippians 2 talks about imitating Christ's humility.  
Verse 3 says "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceipt, but in humility consider others better than yourselves." 
The part that stumped me was the first 9 words - Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceipt...
Think about that phrase, then ask yourself  how many things in your DAILY life would you have to stop doing just to obey that phrase?  Don't misunderstand me, I think the rest of the verse is great too!  But this one little phrase just boggles my mind.  It made me think about 
1 Corinthians 10:31 "So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God."  
I'm sorry to say that so much of my daily habits/routines are selfish ambition or vain conceipt. Another thing that I will ask the Lord to help me with.  

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Stir crazy

Something's terribly wrong with me!  I am laying in bed at 11:36pm and I am blogging!  Why you might ask?!?!?  Because my pastor "stole" my husband from me!  They all went to Washington DC for a couple of days for a preaching conference of some sort, so I am by myself.  It's ok during the day because I find things to do and can occupy myself.  However, I DON'T LIKE SLEEPING ALONE!!!!!!  It's weird how you become so comfortable having someone with you at night.  I know it sounds kinda corny, but I like  reaching over in the middle of the night to make sure that Claude is there and that he's sleeping peacefully.  
It's funny how we take people for granted until they're gone.  It makes me think of my mother-in-law and her loss.  It's been 11 months since Donna lost her husband, Bobby.  I know that she struggles to get to sleep every night.  She may get 2-3 hours in, but it's pretty restless.   
My point is that the little "highlights" of our lives shouldn't be forgotten or overlooked.  We should count those blessings daily and thank the Lord for them.  You never know when your life could change and you lose a special someone or a parent.  Don't miss the opportunity to TELL THEM what they do for you!  Everyone likes to know that they brighten someone's life.  Don't just assume that they know it!  TELL THEM!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Too Cool!

Love my family! My brother, Phil, took the pictures of the boys in their white shirts! He has a good eye for photography! If you are interested in his work, contact him at

Shoppin' Fun!

Went shopping with a few ladies from church Wednesday morning after acountability breakfast!  It was sooooo much fun!!!!  We went to Harris Teeter because they run a quarterly thing called "triple coupon days"!  My bill was $107.06 but I paid $31.86!  I saved $75.20 on stuff that I used everyday!  How cool is that!?!?!  I called my mom to ask her if she gets the Sunday paper because I thought it would be neat if she could mail me the coupon pages regularly!  This way, the next coupon swap night I have some to exchange!  


Here are the pastors' wives being good stewards with their money!!!!!
Of course, the fact that we had a BLAST shopping together is just a fringe benefit!!!


If anyone is interested in getting started with the "coupon swap" and this shopping spree we did, shoot an email to Kim (lady in the center) and she can give you more details!  She and another lady from church, Barbara Stokes, have been doing this kinda thing for awhile now so they know when the sales are coming, and when the next swap will take place!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

It's Who You Know

Know that the Lord is God.  It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, the sheep of His pasture.  Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name.  Psalm 100:3-4
My devotion yesterday morning has been sitting on my heart so I thought I'd share it.  
Based on what Matthew 16:13 says, Christ asked His disciples "Who do people say the Son of Man is?"  What would we tell Christ if He asked us that today?  What are people saying about God in this day & age?  I say, some would say he was a good man.  Some might even say a prophet or a teacher.  Some may even say just some guy whose suppose to be this savior of the world.
But in verse 15 He asked "Who do YOU say I am?"  This one made me ponder and had me crying by the end of my writing.  I say He is the One who loved me so much that He was willing to leave the glory of Heaven to come to earth and save me!  He's my Savior!  He's my loving Father, the One who hears my heart's cry and comforts me.  He's the One who gives me daily blessings, the One who love me in spite of my ugly heart.  He's my King!  I belong to Him!  
So often, we as Christians, shout "I do believe!", but in the very next breath, we cry out "help me overcome my unbelief!"  My challenge for myself is to start taking God at His Word and to really know Him better.  (1 Kings 18:21)

Monday, May 12, 2008

Ever wonder?!?

Ever wonder what your pastor does when you don't see him at church functions?!?!?  Here's your answer!  Some dads & sons got together for some paintballing.  One of the boys in childrens church wanted to go paintballing for his birthday!  From the pics on his dad's blog (Jon Rennie), they look like they had alot of fun!!!  Isn't it nice to know there are still dads out there who actually enjoy hanging out with their kids!?!

What God does

Yesterday was Mother's Day.  I will admit that it's not my favorite day, but I love calling my mom and talking to her.  I love watching mushy "moms" movies.  I loved having my mother-in-law over for dinner (Claude grilled out!  IT WAS GOOOOOOD!!!).  
I received some pictures from my brother in FL.  He knows how much I miss my nephews & nieces.  I was amazed at how much they've grown just in the 6 months since I've seen them!  I just adore them so much!  Anyway, my brother knows that those kids fill a hole in me (you know, the "desire to be a mom" hole).  They are fun, energetic, happy, healthy, beautiful kids.  
When reading my devotion today, it talked about how God is in every circumstance and that He is in control of everything that happens.  As Christians, when we let worry, anxiety, or resentment in our lives, we sin.  WOW.  I didn't like that at all.  Let's be honest for a minute, we've ALL worried about something at one time or another.  We've ALL been anxious at one period of our lives.  We've ALL dealt with some form of resentment in our hearts for something we feel should/shouldn't have happened to us.  For me, Mother's Day is one of those "resentment" days.  Each year gets a little better.  I make myself look at the "kids" I DO have!  I love our children in childrens church!  I am nuts about our teens in Crosslink.  They fill the hole in me too!  
God KNOWS what He's doing!  He didn't see fit to give me biological children, but I've got a bunch of "adopted" kids!  He's blessed me with a husband who loves to work with kids.  He's a creative fun guy whom the kids adore!  What more could I ask for!?!
BTW, my niece, Rose, LOVES CLAUDE!!!!!  Don't mind ME, her biological aunt, she's enamored with Uncle Claude!  
And, although he would never get mushy about it, he adores her too!  She got to him like none of the boys ever did!!!  I guess it's the Father/daughter thing that happens to a man!  Or perhaps it has something to do with the fact that she is SO MUCH LIKE ME when I was her age!!!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

True Love Waits...

Last night we took 17 of the Crosslink students to a True Love Waits conference in Wilson, NC.  
It was AWESOME!  We had one girl from our crew accept Jesus as her Savior!  Another girl accepted Jesus 2 weeks ago and finally felt the courage to share it with her peers!  3 of the guys rededicated their lives to Christ!  I am sitting here typing this and I have goosebumps!  I am so happy and in awe of Christ's power even when you don't feel it!  I had talked earlier to my Mom and told her that I was anxious & nervous about the conference because I had never been to a conference about sex!  I thought & prayed about it all morning and even while we were there, I was asking God to move in at least one of our kids!  Well, God obviously doesn't care what the topic is!  He can touch hearts no matter what as long as they are open to the Holy Spirit!  I have to go now and call my Mom and tell her the "Good News"!!!!!

Kelsey & Bama... I am so happy and proud of you that you stepped up and accepted Jesus!  
John, JC, & Craig...You guys are leaders with a direction now!  Be true to your rededication.

I love you guys!

Friday, May 2, 2008

What a week...

Well, it's been a interesting & challenging week!
Sunday morning before church, I received a call from my brother in FL. My mother was at the emergency room in Tampa having severe pain when she tried to breathe. OK... I needed to panic right about then. I had this information and could do NOTHING to control it or help. I was 800+ miles away, couldn't contact my dad to find out more details, and we are about to start children's church. OK...
Monday, we went to dinner with a couple from church who have been talking with Claude & I about their relationship and their future plans. OK... we love this couple, but they are young and it's a bit nerve-wracking to think that they are planning their future at such a young age.

Tuesday, I went to a impromptu bridal shower for a young lady. OK... don't know much about their relationship except they haven't known each other very long so. OK... I am praying that the Lord is and will be the center of their marriage. I hope/pray that they realize there is more than a wedding that happens... there's a marriage and life after the honeymoon.

Wednesday, worried about my mom. OK... still couldn't do much and hadn't heard much from the doctors about why she was in pain when she tried to breathe. Had breakfast with my accountability partners. Shared things, realized there are quite a few marriages that are in dire need of prayer and God's help. OK...

Thursday, went to lunch at SCHS with Claude & Laci. We had "4" lunches! Our youth group is spread out amongst ALL 4 lunches and we didn't want anyone to feel left out! It was fun, but I definitely am glad I don't have to eat cafeteria food!!! Even chick-fil-a was EEEWWW!
Also, went with Stricklands to look at a bus for church. OK... loved it! Still, there are several different things to consider and the price was higher than we want to spend. All in all though, loved it!

Today, took the day to go and visit Claude's mom in New Bern. It's relaxing and fun. OK...

So, thru all the things that have gone on this week, I've determined a few things.
PRAYER is so vital to me!
I could do nothing but pray and cry out to my Father to be with my mom. I prayed for strength to help me not to take on worry for something unknown.
I could do nothing but pray and beg the Lord to be with the couples who are planning futures. Pray that their lives are so filled with Him, that their futures would glorify Him NO MATTER WHAT!
I could do nothing but pray for the handful of marriages that are falling away from Him. Ask my God to open eyes and soften hearts. Cry for the mistakes and pray the Lord's healing of those hearts.
I could do nothing but PRAISE GOD! He allows us so much by working with the students at DC. These children & students are like our own! (Except we can give them back when we're done!!!)
I could do nothing but ask for God to guide and provide. He knows our hearts and desires with the bus! We only need to seek Him for the right decision.
So, my lesson learned this week was I COULD DO NOTHING...but pray. (Phil. 4:13)