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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Baby Sophie


So, my friend Xuan had Baby Sophie this last week and we went over to meet her tonight. She is absolutely beautiful and perfect!!!

Humility vs Me

Okay so I'm just going to say it from the get go....I'm not bragging.  Yeah, keep reading;)  So today I led worship at our church. Levi & Jonathan went to a conference the beginning of this week and Jonathan had a lock in this weekend so he asked me to lead.  I'm not going to lie, I wasn't so impressed with myself the last time I led. I felt really nervous. I felt like I rushed through stuff.  Definitely didn't feel great about it.  Side note, I'm not a perfectionist in every area of my life but with my singing I am.  I don't want to mess up. I don't want to look stupid, etc etc etc.  I agreed to lead.  And then at our bi-monthly practice, I totally screwed up the keys so we couldn't really practice my songs like we should have.  I've got 2 strikes against me.  I've been reading through the Bible with my friend April and I've really been committed to do it.  I'm really trying to let the Holy Spirit speak through me and change me.  Moses comes to mind, he was imperfect but God used him.  Same with Joseph & David, God used the imperfect, the weak, the vulnerable.

Anyway, I got to church this morning and the first song we were singing is called "Freedom is Here." And for me, freedom means freedom from worry and imperfection and myself.  I really had to say that to myself.  and honestly, it felt great to just lead our people in worship without fear or worry if I was going to hit all the notes right or get all the words right or "do a good job."  I really tried to worship this morning as if it was just me in the room.  I'm thankful that God doesn't give up on me, that He still prompts my heart, that He takes my measly talent and can use that for His glory. I want that desire to stay fresh and new in me.  It was a great morning. I'm so thankful for our church and our people.  I'm not bragging on myself but more on God and the stuff He's doing in and for me and the people around me.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

C Group

Had a great time at Fuzzy's Taco Shop tonight for our C group social...thought I'd throw a picture of them in the mix.

My Friend, Husband, & M11

So every 4 years the Nazarene denomination does a conference called M (with a number based on the year).  Anyway, Levi and April are presenting right now as I type.  They are doing a seminar on social media and how churches can use social media to their advantage.  Social media meaning twitter, facebook, youtube, etc.  I am so excited for them.  I feel like this is pretty cutting edge stuff.  April is so funny. She is not a native nazarene.  She is newly Christian but she is using her talents and gifts. It has been so cool to walk this journey with her.  It has helped me with my faith. I realize I take a lot for granted and I don't question the way I should.  Anyway, I'm just so excited for them and can't wait to hear how it goes.  April taught a Web Analytics class that I took and learned a lot.  I hope to pick up some consulting work to be able to help churches better use social media to their advantage.  Here's a pic of April about ready to go:)  I'm also proud of Levi.  He has done church in a different way.  It's kind of a gamble sometimes.  He has done what he feels like God is calling him to do and it is cool to see people respond and feel loved by God and by the "church", people who have never felt that acceptance.  I love it!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Blessed Beyond Measure

I just have to share some things.  Last week at band practice, as we were singing, I had this weird sense of thanks and that I should be praying for our people at our church. I kind of visualized where different people sat and how thankful I truly am for all of the wonderful people at Catalyst.  And it just kind of went on from there.  Wednesday night at C group, I picked a Rob Bell video on prayer.  And it was kind of depressing but elicited some great conversation.  I love that our C group is starting to hang out, outside of church & c group.  They're calling each other and meeting for lunch or dinner. I LOVE that!!!

Well, then Sunday rolls around.  And after church, a bunch of us eat lunch together, there are some regulars and we had some new people (to lunch-not church).  It was great.  All of a sudden, the conversation just got deep and vulnerable.  It was awesome.  And I just sat back and watched my friends turn into the hands and feet and ears of Christ.  They were bearing each other's burdens. It was so freakin' cool!  And last night, we had our second prayer service.  It was different than the first.  We had smores and hot dogs after and it was a great time.

This morning, I meet with 2 friends for life transformation group.  One couldn't come so the two of us met and talked.  I take for granted sometimes the openness and questions that others have about God, church, religion, etc.  I tend to be challenged by questions and I like it. I like that I'm embracing questions instead of being intimidated by them.  It was cool to talk through some things and then hours later to have my friend call back and talk about how she had "googled" some of the stuff we were talking about.  How she realized that we NEED Jesus because He is the only one without sin and how she kind of had this epiphany and she was so excited.  I love that.

I just seriously feel this overwhelming sense of thanks to God for all the blessings in my life through our church.  I never want to be stuck in that bubble of friends or familiarity.   I have seen such cool things happening in the lives of our people that I want to share that. I want that to catch and grow like wildfire.

I was telling Levi the other morning as we were talking that it'd be really interesting to see who we impact.  Are all of my friends churched people?  Do I pour my life into anyone other than those in my bubble or my family?  If so, shame on me.  I really feel that way and not so much in a judgmental way but a missional way.  My friend and I talked alot today about people that have never heard the Good News or that Jesus died for their sins.  And it struck me again, we have to be loving others and sharing with them why we have the faith and hope and joy that we have.  We have to love God and love others.  For me that means, reaching out.  I don't know, maybe this doesn't even make a lot of sense.  I just needed to get it out....no so poetic but pretty raw tonight.

Okay, that's all I've got....

Friday, February 18, 2011

Scentsy

Okay so today I bit the bullet and joined Scentsy. I love Scentsy products. I love the house and car smelling nice and fresh and clean. I love that!!  So, I joined.  Hopefully, I can make it work so I can earn a little bit and my habit:)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

February 17, 2011

My c group thinks they are so funny. I purchased two prelit evergreens to use as decoration on my front porch. One for each side of the door. My plan was/is to decorate them with season ribbon and leave them out all year and to buy 2 nice pots to put them in.  This is the note I found this morning (after C group last night).

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

My Biker Babe

video
So, Levi taught A to ride a bike (without training wheels) in like 2 days. She is rockin' in!! I love this girl. Sorry, there's no sound:)  Here is what she did today....day 2 of learning:)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

February 13, 2011

So, we threw a shower for my friend Xuan last week.  Today she gave me a gift for doing it.  It's a Mommy necklace and I LOVE it!!! So, it's my picture for today:)

Rebuttal from My Husband's Sermon

Okay so Levi talks about our family, me, Jonathan, and this morning, he threw Jacob in there.  I am so okay with that.  BUT, today, he crossed a line so I am here to set everyone straight.  He talked about our raised garden that we planted last spring.  (I'm really not upset but will set the record straight nonetheless). So, we actually spent around $60 on the raised bed materials.  Some of my plants went CRAZY (like the watermelon) and we actually had to pull it up because it was taking over the garden...the vines, we didn't see the first fruit of a watermelon.  My basil also went bonkers.  I made a bunch of fresh pesto and shared (Rachel Hieby-helped me make it and it was so yumolicious!!). We were able to give a lot of jalapenos away (Fred S. & Irene I particularly liked them).  And, I did water the plants...maybe not as frequently as I should have but I enjoyed pulling the weeds & taking care of it.

I realize my hubs took some pastoral leeway this morning with our story.  The point was made that our relationship with God is similar to a garden.  If we don't cultivate and dig and water, we will be barren in our lives. We will not experience the fruits of that relationship.  It was awesome. I love hearing Levi preach & teach. He is truly being used by God and I love that.  I love our church...last week Levi said something like this, "Left to myself, I am one angry and mean s.o.b."  He used the letters not the words. I love that. After church, a friend told me the scripture I read was kick ass.  Another friend that I'm reading the Bible with told me that Jesus was one bad ass.  I love that our people (and pastor) are just real.  They're not prettifying themselves for show.  They are just who they are.   I LOVE IT!!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

February 12, 2011



We had a jam packed and wonderful day today.  Levi went one direction and went another so we're all pooped but we had so much fun. My kids went to our dear friend's birthday party at Shenaniganz and it was wonderful. A kept telling me she didn't want to bowl...once we got there, she was awesome.  She bowled and played laser tag. They had so much fun.  K-Man, April and I were on team and we did quite well too.  A had Steve with her for laser tag but once she got in there, she dropped him like a bad habit. She was so funny, running around by herself with her little gun. We ended our night at Paradise Burger and it was delicious!!  I love that family.  We always have tons of fun!!  Levi went with the men skeet shooting.  They had a great time too. We missed being with Levi today but glad all had fun!!  Here are some pics of the madness that was had:)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Neighbors

We have the best neighbors in the world. I am so very thankful for them.  Levi and I don't always get things right but in connecting with our neighbors we have.  We have been able to connect with them and develop a great friendship.  Last night, I got to hang out with some of them.  I went over to help with some math but ended up just talking about life and relationships and just life in general.  Anyway, my neighbor texted me last night and thanked me for "sharing life" with them.  I was reminded of Levi's sermon from Sunday.  He challenged us as a church to reach out to our community and live life with people without any ulterior motives or to try to "save" them.  Anyway, I love living life with people.

February 11, 2011 First Tooth

Guess who lost their first tooth???

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Bible Reading

My friend April and I are reading the Bible together.  We're doing the One Year Bible plan.  I am behind...partially because we started different plans and so I quit my first one and joined her plan.  I am not quite caught up but I should be in a few days. It's pretty interesting to hear insights about the Bible from different personalities.  And April's perspective is quite different than mine.  That's good and great.  I'm trying to read with new eyes and gain new insights.  I realize I'm pretty judgmental about somethings and I'm trying not to be that way.  It's definitely hard at times.
I also just read an article about Hillsong United.  It was pretty cool to read about their humility in worship. The article talked about the culture of Australia and how they call it tall poppy syndrome.   They basically knock down all the tall poppy to keep grounded.  This is crazy. I think it's the opposite here.  It's like we all think of ourselves better than others and are encouraged to do so.  And, it seems like there's a lot of two faced butt kissing....and then back stabbing.  It was a very interesting article about their humility and their focus and how they stay grounded.  Everything points back to the Holy Spirit and their encounter during worship with Him. One quote was that "worship is not a song, it's a devotion." I love that.  I want my life to be a devotion to God, one that flows into every facet of my life.  

February 8, 2011

So, every other Tuesday night, we have the Sprang boys over (while MeaMea works).  It's been great to get to love on that little one.  I gave him a diet dr. pepper last night and he loved it. Knew just what to do with it!! Sweet boy!!

February 7, 2011

Baby Sophie is on her way....cannot believe she's almost here. We had a great baby shower/ladies night out.  Johnny Carinos does a killer Monday night special.  We had so much fun!!  And, there is more baby news to share but....I'll keep you waiting...it's not me...let me kick that rumor right out of here:)

February 6, 2011 Poor Beck Beck

Our giant schnauzer is a crazy one!!!  He scratches himself like crazy.  I think it was our fault this time, usually we can blame allergies.  He had a spot that matted (we've got to brush him more-confession-sorry).  Anyway, we had to get him a collar-of-shame so he'd stop!! Poor thing!

February, 5, 2011 more snow fun

We have had lots of fun in the snow. Saturday we found a great hill and sledded our hearts out. We made a snowman, had a snowball fight, and lots of great memories were made!!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Click for FLIP Camera

Okay so I'm trying to win a FLIP camera.  Click the link to the left, it's a chevy eco superbowl commercial.  If I'm one of the top 100 with the most views, I win a camera....click it for me;)  PLEASE!!

Snow Day #4

 We escaped to McDonalds after our predicted 1-3 inches of snow turned into 6-8 inches.  Then we went home and had lots of fun playing in the snow;)

Friday, February 4, 2011

Chemistry

So last night we had band practice.  About a year ago we went to 2 bands so we could a month on, month off rotation.  It's actually been really nice to be able to walk into church late and enjoy the service in that way.  I was off last month and I was really glad to get back at it. I'm glad I miss it.  I'm glad singing isn't a bore.  Jonathan and I have been singing together for the last 7 or 8 years...wow that's kind of crazy. There is definitely a chemistry and comfort that I have with him on stage.  A few years ago, I sang at a wedding with another guy and I realized how easy it was to sing with Jonathan and the things that you have to practice and work on, I really don't with him.  It's kind of like our voices know what the other's is going to do. Not saying I don't have to practice or it's always perfect but there is a comfort there.  I take that for granted so I thought I'd give him some props in my blog today.

I tease Levi and Jonathan and call Jonathan Levi's work wife.  I'm glad they have each other and it's been really cool to see their relationship grow and each of them stretch themselves.  This church planting stuff is pretty tough but they've definitely risen to the challenge.  They can admit mistakes, change their course, and learn.  I'm glad they have each other.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

February 3, 2011 Pickle-astrophe

Okay so I had to add a second picture today.  My favorite purchase today were jalapeno baby dills.  I joked as I got out of the car with my two jars that I didn't want to drop them and how unfortunate that would be.  I just got this picture from April.  The silver lining was that the jars were bogo...so this was the free jar.

Snow Day #3

Okay so day 3 of being iced in!  April came and got us and we ventured out to Tom Thumb, Walgreens, and Taco Bell.  This picture is very UNflattering but oh well...vanity is wrong so soak up my unflatteringness;)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011