Wednesday, October 31, 2007

going all out

Yesterday I heard my mother give me instructions on passing out candy at her house tonight. She and Jimmy are going out of town today and since I had already made plans for this evening my mother made arrangements that Jake and I would be in charge of passing out candy at her house.

My mom, the preschool teacher that she is, LOVES Halloween. She doesn't love all the scary stuff, or all the candy, but really just the fact that she gets to see all the cute neighborhood kids dressed up. It made her so sad to think her house would be one of those houses with no candy this year...she couldn't bear it. So these were her instructions:

Emily: I need to leave at 6:00
Mom: that's OK. If you will come over after work and be there early for when all the little comes I will get Jake to stay later.
Emily: OK, I can do that.
Mom: and if they are 2, 3, or 4 then they can get 1 thing of play-dough with a little candy.
Emily: wow! OK...

Do you all understand now? When you have a mother who gets age appropriate candy and activities on Halloween you are bound to not only love and appreciate holidays but enjoy children as well. I am fully aware of how much alike my mother and I are but when she goes all out for things like this its a reminder once again. I'm glad I'm like my mother!

On a slightly sadder note - this is the first year in 24 years that I have not dressed up for Halloween. Last year I was Mary Poppins and I'm not sure there is anywhere else to go after that. I loved being Mary Poppins. I'm not sure anything else would top that.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

are you kidding me?!

so, this is my dog...Bauer. He is officially 1 year old. In dog years, he's about 8.2 years old. Neither of these ages qualify him for a "terrible twos" type stage but I feel like that is what's going on. I wasn't aware that dogs could throw temper tantrums...they can...and mine does.

About a month ago I was planning to join some friends for dinner. Bauer, on the other hand, was planning for me to stay at home with him all night. If you have met my dog, you've probably been introduced to some of the most horrific noises you've heard...he makes those when he's happy. And if he makes those when he's happy, you can only imagine the horror that abounds when he is unhappy. He literally threw a fit when I tried to leave that night. Making the worst noises and acting determined to get himself out of his crate. I could hear him as I got into my car. Needless to say...he won that fight and I stayed home.

Yesterday, however, I witnessed something that I didn't think a dog was capable of. He literally threw temper tantrum in the middle of the street. I go home for lunch (like I do everyday) to take him for a walk. I take him outside, go get the mail, and proceed on our normal route. Latelly Bauer has thought that its been fun/cute/controlling for him to grab his leash in his mouth and run ahead of me to prove that he is the one taking me for a walk. Most of the time I think its funny...until he starts to physically eat his leash...we can't have any of that. Usually when he starts to eat it I can just yank it out of his mouth...not yesterday. I go to pull it out of his mouth and he isn't budging. We start this game of tug of war (which my 40 lbs dog beats me at!) and he starts to make this really mean growls and barks - though he's still clamped down on his leash. I go to grab his collar and he goes limp on the ground and just lays there - still holding on to the leash barking and growling and causing all the other neighborhood dogs to start barking. I'm trying to get out of the middle of the street but he continues to lay there and let me pull him on the pavement as he is still biting down on his leash.

It was aweful. I felt like a mom of 2 year old in the middle of the grocery store. I wasn't aware dogs could act like that. I now have more sympathy for mom's with 2 year olds in grocery store and I feel a little more equipped to one day be that mom with a 2 year old in a grocery store.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I do....well, they did...

This past Saturday I heard my dear Rachel pledge her love to her new husband Chris! I went to school with Rachel from 1st grade on up. She is a wonderful friend and it was a joy to share that special day with her and stand up there along side them.

The weekend was very busy, but also very special for many involved. I heard Rachel's dad publicly affirm Rachel for the amazing, Godly women she has become and credit a lot of that to her mom, Boogle. I heard Chris's mom talk about all the prayers she had prayed for Chris and over Chris regarding his future wife and how she couldn't be more blessed to now have Rachel be in her family. One of the most interesting things I heard was something the preacher did during the vows. For both Chris and Rachel he had them repeat, "for richer or poorer" and then he had them repeat it again, "for richer or poorer." It was kind of funny, but I've kept thinking about ever since then. I have no idea why he did it...maybe he knows the struggle finances can cause in a marriage, maybe he experienced that himself, maybe he thought that part needed some extra emphasis. Who can know? I just thought it was interesting.

here are some more pictures from the wedding weekend!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Here I am, Lord

I've been traveling for the last week. Apart from a few life changing summer camps and incredibly powerful mission trips, this week will go down in the history book of my life as one of my favorites! I've been at the children's home for two years now. Earlier this summer the Lord showed me that this is not just a job to take a lightly, but that is my ministry. I began to see each day as life on the mission field...though days stuck behind a computer quickly began to become mundane. That all changed this past week. I spent everyday on one of our campuses spending time with our amazing children and talking with house parents. I love this picture. I took it during the sunrise from our Boys Ranch outside of Memphis. Its a little peice of heaven to me.

I've grown up going on mission trips to other states and other countries. This week I was once again reminded that our Lord is mighty and big and also loves His children here in Nashville and Tennessee. I heard stories from our children that moved me to tears. I heard house parents speak of answering the Lord's call in their lives to be full time missionaries for the Children's Home. I heard both of them talk about miracles happening in the lives of the children and how God is using this place to further His Kingdom and to spread His love. Its an exciting thing to be a part of. I'm humbled God would choose me and I'm excited about what great things He is doing in the lives of the children He has placed in our care.

Here is a snapshot of things I heard:
"If I hadn't of come to the children's home, I would be dead. We never had enough food so I figure I would have starved to death."

"I'm a houseparent because the Lord tells us to take of His children...the least of these."

"When I look into the eyes of these children I see the love of Christ. I see hope that can only come from an almightly Father who lavishes His on these dear children."

I was home for two days before I went back on the road. One of those nights I spent back at First Baptist for a retirement service for their minister of music. The choir sang a song that echoed everything I had heard the Lord calling me towards as I spent time with the children on our campuses. I don't know what my future holds. I don't know how long I will be at TBCH. I hope its a long time. I want to be useful and I want to help make a difference in the lives our children and help them see that there is a God who will always love them. The following is the song the choir sang that spoke to me as an affirmation that we are all called to be minsters of Christ wherever He sends us and to pray for His people. My prayer that is I will always remember I serve a God who hears his people cries and that I am willing to go wherever he sends me. If you have a minute today, I would appreciate it if you would stop and pray for the children at TBCH. They have lived hard lives and are in so much need of hope and joy.

I, the Lord of sea and sky,
I have heard my people cry.
All who dwell in dark and sin,
My hand will save.

Here I am, Lord. Is it I, Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night.
I will go, Lord, if you lead me.
I will hold your people in my heart.

I, who made the stars of night,
I will make their darkness bright.
Who will bear my light to them?
Whom shall I send?

I, the Lord of snow and rain,
I have borne my people’s pain.
I have wept for love of them.
They turn away.


I will break their hearts of stone,
Give them hearts for love alone.
I will speak my words to them.
Whom shall I send?


I, the Lord of wind and flame,
I will send the poor and lame.
I will set a feast for them.
My hand will save.


Finest bread I will provide,'
Til their hearts be satisfied.
I will give my life to them.
Whom shall I send?

Here I am, Lord. Is it I, Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night.
I will go, Lord, if you lead me.
I will hold your people in my heart.