Wednesday, March 30, 2011

In Honor of Simba

Today, I said goodbye to a friend and companion of almost 15 years...oh how I will miss this boy!! He was one of a kind...there will honestly never be another cat that will even compare! What a personality from the time he was just a baby kitten. I can remember going to pick out a kitten from the 2 litters that were in my Mom's barn. She pointed to him and said he was always into something and not even afraid of the horses. She was worried he was going to get stepped on. He lived up to that personality all of his days...he wasn't afraid of anything and would take on any dog we brought into this house! He could tell you off when his meow and yawl at you until you did what he wanted. He slept on my pillow every night. He greeted guests that came over and wanted to be petted just like the dogs. He thought he WAS a dog! His life became complete when we got the doggie door installed and he could go in and out as he pleased. Oh, how he loved to hunt and bring in his goodies. The worst was the RAT and the snake...neither of which did he bother to KILL! Just wanted to show them to me! We spent many nights and afternoons chasing down live frogs and lizards in the house too...I think he sat back and laughed at us.
I wondered how Simba would be when his beloved Rocky and Jax passed away and we got not one, but two new dogs. One as a 8 week old puppy and one as a 5 month old puppy. Simba didn't blink. I don't think he liked them at first, but he broke them and taught them who was boss just like he did with Rocky and Jax. Even as an old man, he still had "it".
Wherever the dogs and I were...so was Simba. He was always right in the middle of things and usually under your feet. (Again, he thought he was a dog!)
Simba always appreciated a good box of any kind and would happily break it in for you!
And, when the dogs got new dog beds for Christmas, he didn't think that left him out of anything. After all, wasn't he just one of the dogs too? He just made it his own and would share if the mood hit him.
His favorite spot was at the pond...hunting! I'm sure the bullfrogs will miss him too!

My heart has hurt all day and there is an empty place in this house today as we all mourn the loss of our Simba boy. There will never be a replacement. Never.



Simba

October 13, 1996 to March 30, 2011

Monday, March 28, 2011

We aren't giving up

After much prayer and a heart-to-heart talk, we realized we aren't ready to give up on our hope of having a child of our own. I feel most comfortable with this path, and that peace tells me that we are on the right path. So, this week's goal is to make Kevin a doctor appointment with a specialist. After we get him all checked out, then my doctor will look back at me. But since my next step is an invasive surgery, then she wants Kevin all cleared first. Now, you know how we like to procrastinate, so feel free to ask us toward the end of the week if we've nailed down an appointment! :) (There is your permission Jill! ha!) Keep those prayers coming...I just have a feeling that very soon we are going to have a happy announcement praising Jesus for a blessing beyond anything we could have imagined!! Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6

Friday, March 25, 2011

Proud for Big Bear!

Remember how I said we were peeling stickers off the concessions trailer? It was one tedious sticker at a time...the previous owners design had itty bitty pieces. (This is why we kept putting it off...it was a pain! ha) We got it done and today, Big Bear got to pick up his newly wrapped concessions trailer! And, we are just right proud of it! :)
There you have it, a happy boy and his trailer...now give him a call and let him do your concessions! :)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spring Break/Anniversary Trip

*Disclaimer: This may be a long post because I am basically journaling for when I scrapbook these pages. (My memory is horrible!!)
Spring Break is flying by!!! I can't believe it is already Thursday!! It's been a good break with a nice mix of yard work, road trips, and time with my Big Bear. I spent the first few days cleaning up flowerbeds and working in my pond...trying to 'be quiet and listen' (see previous post). So far, I have no more clarity than I did before, but I'll try again tomorrow to settle down and listen! :) Anyway - for anyone with a backyard pond, if your pump goes out in the middle of winter, go ahead and replace it instead of waiting until Spring. I had a huge mess of mud, slush, leaves and yuckness to clean out. And, all my fish had died. So, I was also managing to disturb the habitat of our very loud and large bullfrogs! They really freaked me out the first time I came across them. I pulled one up in the net and it was LARGE! I'll take an after picture once I get some more pond plants and the mulch down tomorrow.
After two solid days of yard and flower bed clean-up, it was time to play for a bit. So, Tuesday night we went to see the Hogs play a baseball game locally. It was a packed house! Sold out! And, I had a hard time getting into the game because we really couldn't see well where we were but it was still fun. I have to put a big THANK YOU in writing right now to my Big Bear for bringing back my love of watching the Razorbacks! In college, I loved watching Hog football, basketball and baseball. I went to all the football home games and lots of the basketball and baseball games. Then, somehow, in my move away from Fayetteville and into Central Arkansas, I lost it. I think it was not having anyone to go with to the games...doesn't matter. Going to all these games has me hooked again! Thanks Big Bear for being my best friend and loving to hang out and go to games together! Seems like a small thing, but it's not!
Wednesday, we followed the Hogs to Memphis and spent the night for our anniversary trip. We aspire to be Road Hogs someday and travel around to all the Hog games! Ha! Kevin took me to some of his favorite places in Memphis and I wondered a few times how I had lived so close to Memphis my whole life and not experienced this town earlier. My favorite food was Central BBQ...BBQ nachos! Yum!!I could see where I would have really enjoyed Beale Street in my college days! ha! I did really love the atmosphere with the music playing everywhere live. Again, kind of crazy that I have lived a few hours from Memphis my whole life and only saw Beale Street as a 38 year old. When my mother instilled a fear of Memphis in me as a young 'un, she did an exceptional job!! haThis picture is horrible, but I just wanted to remember how crazy it was that so many people were lined up to see some ducks walk from a fountain to an elevator!! CrAzY!
After exploring downtown Memphis, we headed to the game. There were Hog fans EVERYWHERE! The line wrapped around the stadium....a sea of red! Loved it!! Look at all those Hog fans...the Memphis team is blue...and it was a home game for them, but the Hog fans overtook the stadium!
And our seats were mucho better last night than they were Tuesday night...behind home plate, I will take it! And it was a fun night of calling the Hogs and a good game. We were both a little hoarse this morning from cheering!!When we left the park, we headed to Rendezvous to eat ribs. I gotta say here that I am not sure what all the fuss is about there. The ribs were horrible. Kevin swears we must have just gotten a bad rack because they used to be the best.
We walked around a little more this morning and then slowly headed home stopping in Carlisle to eat lunch and shop at a little flea market. All in all, a successful overnight trip. I highly recommend the Madison as a place to stay in Memphis - super friendly staff and great service! Tomorrow, it is back to yard work...mulch day!

Monday, March 21, 2011

A look inside our hearts...

This week is Spring Break and our anniversary week. That means we've been married for 2 years now and trying to have a baby for 2 years now. We are at a good place with the whole baby thing, in that we have a peace with whatever happens. And, this week we have decided it is time to be in serious prayer about what our next steps should be...where is God leading us in this journey? What are our next steps supposed to be? Here is the catch. I am trying to work in my flowerbeds and be QUIET and LISTEN for what God's will is for us. I am not good at being quiet and listening. But I am trying...
I find myself thinking about fertility treatments that we cannot afford. Adoption that we cannot afford. Then, I stop and remember ALL things are possible with God. All things! I remind myself of all the times that He has provided for us. How He gives us just what we need. And, then I stop with the negative thoughts. Kevin and I have had a serious talk about his idea of fostering, and I think God makes special people for that, and I am not one of them. I am not saying never or no, because I am not sure if this is ME talking or God. So, we are praying. I just don't think I can foster kids. I can't even foster dogs without getting too attached. I cry when I give up a foster dog. How could I ever love a child and then give them up? I am pretty sure my heart isn't made for that journey. I am not, however, opposed to adoption. My biggest fear with adoption is that because of our past, someone would decide that we wouldn't make good parents. The thought of someone coming into our home and judging us to decide if we could be parents or not, well, that makes me nervous and a little sick to my stomach. Then, when those thoughts creep in, I think again, all things are possible with God. If this is the plan He has for us, then He will clear the way. So, we are praying. We are listening. We are keeping our hearts open to what is ahead. When doubt and worry start to settle in, I start counting all the blessings we have already been given. And I remember some important words:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6
Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
I can do everything through Him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13
If God is for us, then who can be against us? Romans 8:31
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5,6
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16, 17

I could keep going with the Bible verses...that is where the peace is found! :) Please pray with us that we hear God's plan for us.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Happy Anniversary to us!

He was my best friend then... (15 and headed to the Christmas dance) And, he is still my best friend today...
Our journey hasn't always been easy, but I wouldn't trade it for the world!
God really did bless the broken path that led me straight to you! :)


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Almost there!

One more day to Spring Break! I am exhausted!! I've been juggling MY work and trying to stay on top of the books for Kevin's stuff and helping out there. Can you say professional juggler? I am tired and ready for a little break for sure! At the same time, I am so happy for Big Bear that he has been so busy!! And now we are peeling all the stickers off the concessions trailer to get it ready for our logo to go on!! yeee!!! You know I'll have pictures when it is complete! :)
What else is going on?
*Praying about starting a Bible Study for women at my church.
*Praying and pondering on the next steps in our baby Benson saga....more thoughts on that when I'm not utterly exhausted. Maybe in a few days...for whatever reason, it's been on my mind recently and then Kevin said something last night about fostering. Obviously, it has been on his too, but not sure how I feel about fostering. Pondering....

Monday, March 14, 2011

Count down is ON!

4 days until Spring Break! Whoop! You know what I love best about Spring Break? It will always fall at our anniversary time! Saturday, Kevin and I will be married for two years. And, what are we doing for our anniversary? We are following the Hogs! Pig Sooie! We have tickets for Razorback baseball in Little Rock on Tuesday night and then we are following them to Memphis on Wednesday. F.U.N! We are going to hang around Memphis and get some good eatin' in and see some of the town too. Come on Spring Break! (You know I have some yard work planned too...Spring Break wouldn't be Spring Break without me in the flowerbeds!)
4 days and counting....

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Weekend of...

...working outside and caterings! That about sums up our weekend! I love this time of year when it's starting to get nice outside and I get to work in my flowerbeds!!!
Friday night we previewed my cousins yard sale and found some treasures that helped support his mission trip to Alaska over Spring Break. Awesome!
Then, Saturday, I slept in and then got started on the backyard. I have two flowerbeds ready for mulch. Only 3 to go! :) My biggest accomplishment was cleaning up the back deck and the storage shed. MESSES! Oh, the projects I could do around here if I had money! ha!
Big Bear had a catering at our church on Saturday night and today at a church in Conway. So, we got to see his sister before they left for Israel. Please keep his sister's family in your prayers. They are all four leaving for Israel in the morning for two weeks. Thanks!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

YIPPEEE!!!

Good news all around! Remember the $6,000 bill from my surgery that insurance wasn't going to cover? My awesome doctor wrote a letter of appeal for me. They said it would take 30 to 60 days to hear back. But after about two weeks, I got the letter in the mail today. And, yippee, they have reconsidered and insurance is paying the bill!!!! I called the hospital to let them know and they said a payment was made yesterday!! Whoop! Big load off my mind!

And, in other good news, Big Bear has a catering 5 out of 7 days this week! AND, one day next week has two in one day!

Praising Jesus because He is really blessing us! We are in the light at the end of the tunnel! Woohoo!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Teaching the Pups...

Rex and Stella got to be the big dogs and teach the pups a few tricks...like under the storage building is the coolest spot! Drop the ball at Mom's feet and she will throw it and then RUUUNNN and get it! Come on! Do this over and over until Mom's arm feels like it will fall off!
This is the fine art of mole hunting. Stand guard over the mole tunnels you have been digging.Wait! What was that? Did you hear them? When you hear them, get in there and DIG FAST!Good girl...that's it! Just like that...you will catch a mole in no time!
PS. These adorable pups went to my Mom's for her to foster and she's adopting one because they are just too darn precious! See where I get it from?!?

Monday, March 7, 2011

Things I love...

...puppy breath
...catching up with friends
...watching Rex's boxer wiggle
...smiling children
...Kevin's cooking (and that I don't have to!)
...camp fires!
...my quiet time on the way to work
...a good soul-searching Bible Study
...hearing "I love you"
...a hug
...watching a child 'catch on' to something they've struggled with
...sunflowers
...thunderstorms at bedtime
...Nala's fluff
...Kevin's laugh when he gets tickled at himself
...my life! :)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Looongg Week!

This was one of those weeks when we had something every night...I am ready to sleep in tomorrow!! Monday night was the Upward Awards Ceremony. I got a little teared up at saying goodby to those boys!! I fell in love with my husband just a little bit more when he was talking to the boys and giving them all Gideon Bibles. Then, Tuesday night the 3rd graders at school were in a performance, "Soda Shop Hop" and it was precious! They were all dressed up in 50's outfits. I want a poodle skirt!!
Now, Wednesday night, I went to Malvern to pick up these two ADORABLE boxer mix puppies: As you can see, Rex and Stella were thrilled to share their toys again!
And, Big Bear wasn't thrilled either when I told him about it, but as you can see, they quickly won him over! LOL!

I loved the puppy breath and having them for one night. It was enough to enjoy them but to realize that getting up in the middle of the night is for the birds! ha! Last night, we took them to my Mom who is fostering them for BoxAR. :)
And, then tonight was a fish fry for my bosses husband's birthday. So, I worked for my boss during the day and my house boss! It was a success! Big Bear cooks the best fish in Arkansas - hands down!!


Wednesday, March 2, 2011