Three little Monkeys

Three little Monkeys

Friday, November 25, 2011


What a wonderful Thanksgiving we had! I absolutely love being with my family..... Everyone in my family.... The kids and I went to Greenville on Wednesday (Chad was working). Wednesday night, my brother came down and my sister and her family came over to Mama and Daddy's. Daddy made a fire and we roasted marshmallows and made smores.... Well, that isn't exactly how it went. It was more like this.... The 6 kids burned marshmallows, would bring them out, try to blow on them, but it wouldn't blow out... So they ended up in the fire. Then they would get the hershey bars and break off pieces of chocolate and eat a bite, and then give one of the dogs a bite.... And I made smores. I realized after about the 4th one that I didn't need to eat anymore....

Chad showed up really late Wednesday night, so needless to say, the kids waited until he got there. Preston has completely turned into a Daddy's boy. He loves everything about Chad. He kept saying, "I sleep RIGHT NOW with Daddy." But Chad hadn't arrived yet. Finally around 11pm, he showed up. Preston refused to go to bed until he got there. He follows Chad around like his little shadow. When you ask him how much he loves daddy, he smiles and says, "BIG!!!!" I just love him!

Thursday Daddy and Chad and Charles went and played golf, and Mama and I prepared our Thanksgiving lunch... Yes I said Prepared... My daddy had been cooking all week, so there wasn't much cooking to do. The food was soooo delicious! Cole absolutely loves the idea of being together with family. He thinks it is great to go and play with his cousins and have Poppi act "CRAZY" and have Mimi slip him soft drinks and candy.

Chad had to drive back to Fuquay Thursday night. He had to work on Friday and my poor Preston..... He cried as he watched Chad's truck pull away with our Golden Dodger, aka Bubba... He just cried, DADDY, BUBBA, DADDY, BUBBA! I tried taking him away from the window, but little tears just fell down his cheek. He just longs to be with Daddy...

Thursday night, Mama and Daddy babysat my kids and I went to the movies with Shannon and Charles. I LOVE my sister and brother. Some how when we are all together alone (not often) the most ODD subjects are talked about, a few foul noises are heard (from Charles of course), and MANY MANY laughs are had. Usually Shannon says something that didn't exactly make much sense, I am the one who calls it out, Charles shakes his head and we all loose our breath laughing.

We were able to catch a great deal and get into the movie for free... When we arrived, I thought it may be a private showing because we seemed to be the only breathing creatures other than the few girls working the snack stand. Charles refused to get popcorn because he swears the kids who run the popcorn stand probably pee in it at night... His face told the story... YES, he admits he had friends who did that when they were young.... hmmmm. Can I get a small popcorn with butter and a small coke zero.??? Thank you... Didn't taste like urine to me.... :) We get into the movie, and it is pitch black with no one in it... About 5 mins after it was supposed to start, Charles gets up to go tell them there is no movie... They start the movie and we were lucky.... They skipped the previews... Only Shannon would think that stinks.... She wanted to see the previews.... Our typical movie goes like this. Shannon- Oh wow! I want to see that!!! Charles- Shannon, don't be like Dad and talk through the movie... Me- Is somebody going to help me eat this popcorn???? Shannon- I will.... 10 mins later.... Me- You want popcorn? Shannon- Yes.... doesn't get any though... Shannon- What just happened? Charles- Stop talking in the movie.... Shannon- bust out laughing... Me- Is somebody going to eat this popcorn? Shannon- yes, me.... never gets any....

We leave the movie (which was great) and Shannon is ready to take a picture. I think we were definitely the only ones in the theater at this point. We are saying Cheese like 4 or 5 times and the pictures kind of takes but not great... Next thing you see, Charles starts running to the car....never really got the picture and he wasn't really worried about it... Typical man, typical brother.... love him so much!

 This is Charles and his wife Whitney.... Cole has a crush on her...
 My sister Shannon.... I call her Nae Nae
                                         Us as three little trouble makers and dirty mouths.

I sure miss my family. I miss my sister and brother and mom and dad. Charles lives in Richmond, Va and I only see him a few times a year. Wonder why? Because it takes 4 hours to get there... What a lame excuse. I've got to get better about that! He is my baby brother. Even if he is a 31 year old 6 ft married man.... Who I will add maybe one of the best looking men around...:) I miss my sister too. We have so much fun when we are together. We are polar opposites in almost every aspect of who we are, yet we understand each other better than anyone else ever could. Her kids are my kids best friends and I love that.

I can't wait for Christmas..... November and December are my favorite months of every year!!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011


This past month has been filled with birthdays. Friends, family, animals, mine and Chad's. I have been thinking a lot lately.... What is a birthday? The dictionary describes it as the annual day of one's birth. But I disagree. I think beside the word birthday, it should have balloons, a cake, friends, family and pictures of good times. That is always what a birthday was to me when I was growing up. Some say, oh it's just another day.... Well, you are very wrong if you say that. A birthday is a day you make someone feel special and celebrate them being born. I think it is a day you should let that person know how grateful you are for them and what they mean to you..... Today is Chad's birthday,  and I know he felt the love of his friends and family. And I let him know specifically how grateful I am that he was born...

 All of the above is the "earthly" birthday we celebrate. Where I have put my thoughts are the other "birthdays" we should celebrate. August 24th, 2008 is the day Chad and I both accepted Christ and became "born again" Christians. We absolutely acknowledge this day each year, but next year I think we will really celebrate. I am going to get balloons and a cake, and maybe even have a party. This is the "birthday" I am the most grateful for. This is the day God wrote my name in the book of life. This is the day that I felt peace over me knowing I made the decision to accept Christ as my Savior and saved a spot for me in heaven..This my friend..... is a day to celebrate...

Another "birthday" to celebrate are the one's that are probably the hardest to celebrate. That day would be the day the ones we know that accepted heaven as their home and have already entered the Pearly gates. You know there was a party when they arrived. Jesus probably greeted them while the Angels were singing.... I think I will start to celebrate those days as well....

I recently started reading a blog my sister told me about
after many many tears and heartbreak, I realized they will celebrate too. What an amazing faith in God this family has. Her faith is unshakable through out the storm. I pray I too could be so strong.

All of these days are considered "birthdays," and I am ready to celebrate them all....

Below are some pictures my friend April Fraley did for me.... They were a gift to Chad for his birthday....

Monday, October 17, 2011

Wrong Worship

After listening to the most recent video I shared on Facebook titled "Wrong Worship" (the link is below) it really made me think.... I remember so well a little over 3 years ago being in that EXACT place in my life. I would go to Church maybe 1 Sunday every 2 months, and I would leave and say to myself... I am going to try and get back next Sunday. I would feel so good after going and by Monday morning.... well, I had pretty much forgotten what was said or how I felt.... It was an inconvenience to "find time" to go to Church. I had too much going on... Chad worked alot... Cole really wouldn't like the nursery..... excuse after excuse after excuse... Thinking the excuses would make it all go away....

All I can say now is Thank you Lord for your Mercy and your Grace. I think to myself, WHAT IF God would have made the same amount of time for me that I made for him?.... And not only WHAT IF HE WOULD HAVE, but WHAT IF HE DID NOW TOO?.... I thank God for Chad. I thank God for giving me a husband that when he makes a decision, he sticks to it. There is no question as to "are we going to Church  this Sunday???" Or a time where we go like "good" Christians and then fall back into bad habits because I like to make my own decisions instead of following what God wants me to do.  I know myself well enough to know when I accepted Christ 3 years ago, I needed someone to keep me in check. If I didn't have that,  I would gone to  Church when it was "convenient" which would have been when I wasn't busy traveling to different places, staying up late partying like it's 1999, or just because Cole wouldn't sit through it... In other words, I would have been a back slider singing the "Wrong Worship" song...

I am so far from being a Perfect Christian, which is why I can still relate to the "Wrong Worship" song. There are times I just don't feel like Obeying. Instead of getting into the Word, I want to watch the DVR'd X-Factor or Pan AM! Instead of praying when I wake up, I want to jump in the shower before everyone wakes up and have time to get some things done... Instead of praying at night, I sometimes just want to go to sleep because I am so exhausted.... Instead of doing a circle of prayer with Chad in the mornings, I sometimes just want to get the kitchen clean from breakfast....

This leads me to really think.... What if God did the same to me.... What if he didn't feel like blessing me with my health today because he was too busy blessing the ones who gave him their all? What if he didn't feel like keeping my children healthy because I was too busy abusing my own body? What if he didn't feel like blessing our family with an income because he was too busy blessing the ones who weren't being greedy? What if..... what if.... what if.......???? And we still choose to do what we "feel like doing"..... I could be selfish and say, you know what.... I am tired of not doing the things I did in my past. I had fun, I didn't hurt anyone, I am a good person.... and I am saved now anyway, so I am not going to hell..... I am going to look up and say God, Thanks.... But No thanks..... I will deal with it when it is my time to do so..... I could do that....... Thank God I choose not to.... Because it is a choice. It is a personal choice we all struggle with everyday.... When deciding what I will or won't  partake in, I ask myself 2 questions.... 1. Could I witness to someone by doing what ever it is I am about to do? Could I be an image of Jesus Christ and draw others to him???? and 2. Do I want my children to be like me? Or do I expect more from them? They will be exactly who I am.... I can't say "do as I say, not as I do".... Or will I? I thank God that my desires have changed.

Oh Lord, I pray that others will see the "wrong worship" song and think to themselves.... Is This Me? And I pray you deal with their hearts like you did mine...

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What it means to be a Mom...

My entire life, all I really wanted to be was a Mom. When  I was small, I would carry around my babies and talk to them all day long. I would set up my barbies and play house, and would always make sure all of the Skippers and Courtney's and Scotts (skipper's friends) were happy with their Mom. I would be devastated when my Dad would come in and tell me it was time for bed! WHAT! that meant my "make believe I was a Mommy" was over for the night... It was ok though because I would always tuck the dolls in before I actually went to bed......

I can remember like it was yesterday, pretending to be my Mom.  I would baby my brother, Charles, until he was babied out. I would feed him, change his diaper, change his clothes and even dress him like a girl when I wanted to have a daughter during my play time! :) (sorry Charles.) Being a Mom is pretty much all I ever wanted. I have found list and list of names I had written down which were the names I would be naming my children... If I had a girl, he middle name was ALWAYS Nicole. Sometimes her first name was Kirsten, sometimes it was Kelcey, and even sometimes it was Chelsey. ( but I ended up with a Sydney Ruth) I guess back then I didn't think I would have a boy because those names were rare to write down, but either way I had it all planed out.

So, what about being a Mom is so attractive to little girls??? Let me tell you. This little dream becomes a reality and everything your ever dreamed of becomes so much better in real life.... For me, What does it mean to be a mom? I will tell you as I type with one arm propped up on my oldest child as he lays beside me in my bed sound asleep. It is what a Mom does when her child has been sick and all he wants is to be comforted by his Mom....

It means, having the most precious souls in this entire world need you and want you. It means to have them call your name over a hundred times in a hour and each time you answer them as if it were the first time they called. It means sleeping through a Tornado, but bouncing up in the bed because you no longer hear their breath in the monitor. It means loving and caring and holding and giving and nurturing and pampering and spoiling and praising and disciplining these precious ones into responsible, loving and caring humans. It means being responsible for a life that only God could give you. It means waking up every morning and lifting my hands up high to say "Thank you Lord for trusting me with your children." It means laying my head down at night and looking up with a tear in my eye and saying "Thank you Lord for trusting me with your children."  It means waking up in the middle of the night and walking in their rooms just to touch them and feel their little hearts beat. It means cooking dinner and waiting for them to eat to make sure they didn't want yours, it means leaving for a trip alone and never really wanting to be alone, just wanting to know you still can be. It means dropping off your baby for his first day of kindergarten and crying all the way home. It means hearing your child is sick at school and your heart breaks for him before you even see him. It means taking your daughter to her dance class and catching yourself grinning from ear to ear even when her rhythm isn't exactly right. It means playing babies with your daughter just because you know she probably wants to be a mom as bad as you did. It means coloring with her even when you have a million other things you need to do. It mean pushing back bedtime so you can giggle over hearing your baby say his name for the first time over and over and over again. It means saying NO when you really want to pick them up and kiss their neck and say yes It means talking baby talk just like he does, just to get a response from him...... It means all of this and so much more.

Lord, I am humbled by your Grace. I am humbled knowing you gave me these three babies to raise and trust that I will raise them to love you and honor you and teach them to share your word. Lord, I get chills down my back when I think that you chose me.... YES ME to mother these perfect, beautiful, joyous children. What did I ever do to deserve it? That's right.... I don't deserve it..... I have been given Mercy and Grace and you love me so much more than I could ever love, that you trust me with them. Thank You. Thank You.

It is said that Gods Love is described as a Mother's Love for her child.
God said in Isaiah 66:13,"As a mother comforts her son, so will I comfort you.
Thank You Lord... Thank You....

The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new. ~Rajneesh

A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie. ~Tenneva Jordan

If you have a mom, there is nowhere you are likely to go where a prayer has not already been. ~Robert Brault,

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


This Angela Thomas Study has really spoken to me.... It is as if she took a deep look in to my heart and started writing. Now, I will say that each week when I read the title, I think... maybe this one won't hit so close to home this time.... Not so much.

This weeks title was I am Invisible....CLEARLY not for me... I mean really... 3 kids, a husband, starting a new business, active in my Church, love my friends... ME? Invisible? Yep. Me! Invisible! This really goes to show that the outward appearance of someone is exactly that. An Appearance.

She touches on so many things, so I will name a few. Have you ever felt invisible in a new class at school? In your cubicle at your job? Do you lie in bed at night beside your husband to only feel invisible? Maybe you rock your baby to sleep at night while no one notices your hard work? Has there ever been a time when you were in a group of people where someone was talking to you while looking over your shoulder and you felt they were looking for someone more important than you? And when that other person showed up.... You felt invisible?

YES! YES I have. I think it is so hard for me when I feel invisible because I don't like to be invisible. Not because I enjoy for attention to be on me, but because growing up, my parents always made me feel VERY SEEN. :) I have always been the loud mouth of the group and invisible was not what I was. I am sure there were many times they wished I was!

As I look back (and even forward) on when I feel invisible, it stings.... For me, there have been sooo many times. Although my parents would always tell me I was pretty, I never felt it. I mean, I do have 2 eyes and a mirror. I think around 7th grade I started feeling like I wasn't very pretty, even when my mom would tell me how pretty my freckles were and how she loved my eyes. Even today she says she never told me that to make me feel good, she told me that because I was.... thanks mom.... everybody needs a mom like you.  Sooo, for me, feeling invisible in a crowd wasn't abnormal, but I guess I always thought that it was just normal.

I have always been very successful in any job I have had. I never really felt invisible because I was confident in what I did... Until my last job. In December when I received the call that we were going through lay offs... guess what.... I suddenly felt invisible. That was a feeling I will never forget. It was as if the past 4 years of hard work went un noticed. NOW, I will say that I know deep in my heart that God's hand was at work during that time. Being laid off was probably one of the biggest blessings I have received other than my children and my husband... But at the time, I was truly invisible.

I could go on and on and on about feeling invisible when I have my hair in a pony tail, my sweat pants on with baby throw up down my back..... And how there are nights I lay in the bed beside Chad and I am talking to him and I hear a snore..... Invisible? Pretty much....... But I think you get the picture here.

So, Angela Thomas puts it all into perspective..... Although we may feel invisible.... we are never invisible to God. Our Father, our protector, the one who loves us more than we could begin to love our own kids. I love this part of the study. She asked to insert your name and I have.

Kendall, he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. Kendall, the Lord watches over you- the Lord is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. Kendall, the Lord will keep you from all harm- he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore... Psalms 121: 3-8

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but he has given us a spirit of power and of love and of calm and well balanced mind and discipline and self-control. 2 Tim 1:7

Sunday, September 25, 2011

I love to call you my friend....

Girls weekend!....
Friends... we have friends we grew up with, we have friends from high school, we have friends from college, we have friends from our neighborhood, from our children's school, from our Church, friends from work..... I love my friends. Most people who know me, they know I cherish my friendships and I put an extra effort into making sure I do all I can as a friend.

This weekend, me and 3 girl friends from college had our 1st annual Girls Beach Weekend! :) We have already planned out our next 5 years. I enjoyed every minute of it. In the past 5 years (since Cole was born) I haven't ever had a weekend just for myself. I thought I was dreaming for a split second. Me and these girls have so many many memories from college and BOY did we ever recount everyone of them this weekend. It was wonderful!

I met Brooke my freshman year of college. We instantly bonded and have had a close relationship ever since that first day. With her came her 2 best friends from high school Ragan and Catherine. Not always do these type of situations work out where everybody likes each other, but we did. I loved hanging out with them. We always made the most of our nights in college. We experienced ALOT together and in the dorms we were each others home away from home. We stayed friends all through college, and no matter what other separate friends we had or groups we became a part of, we still shared a special bond.

Our time together this weekend is forever cherished. We had such a good time staying up all night just talking. Talking about our faith, our families, our lives, the good the bad the ugly and the wonderful! We relaxed, went out for dinner and just really enjoyed our time together. It is funny how as you grow older and more mature, the things you appreciate change. 10 years ago, we would have planned a weekend of going out and partying and packed with too many things to do. Here we are 10 years later and for us fun was not having anyone ask us to do anything for them and just hanging out.

Brooke, Ragan and Catherine... Thank you for sharing your weekend with me. Thank you for being my friends.....

Friday, September 16, 2011

How to be the Perfect Parent

You probably thought I was going to have some fancy link on here to someone with a PhD on how to raise your children.... My exact reason for writing this.

I have read numerous self help blogs, interenet articles, Parent Magazine articles etc.... on HOW TO's. I have decided that I know the real How To...

Here is the answer-
As Parent's, let's quit being hard on ourselves. Who says one way is better than another? Who says my zoo of a house is any less perfect for my child than your spotless one? Who is to say my unorganzied mess of a drawer is any worse than your organized one (espeically when my kids can find anything they need in there)? Who says my singing and dancing in the car isn't as good as your organized play and dance time?

I think if we ask our kids, "Do you think Mommy is a good Mommy?" I am willing to bet they think you are the best. I know when I look back on my parents, I see nothing wrong with the way we played, our house or anything else. They were perfect to me....

So my question and answer is, Why Stress Ourselves out over it? And the answer is- Just ask your kid... they will probably say you are the Perfect Parent!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

NO LADY, He doesn't need a nap

So, this morning I made a Facebook Status Update. It went a little like this....Just saw everyone staring at a mom with 4 kids in walmart. Three were holding on to the basket nice and quite while the 9 month old baby was screaming his head off. Note to others: don't look at her like she shouldn't be there. It may have been her only opportunity for the day. Just sayin.... Well... It must have been a quick glimpse of my near future.. Very near future... Just sayin....

I decided for dinner we would have Turkey Burgers. Of course I didn't have any of the ingredients. I load the kids up in the car, tightness in the chest, beads of sweat already forming across my forehead and deep breaths counting to 10 before we even arrive. Preston, for some reason, HATES going into ANY store. It doesn't matter if it is Toys R Us! If it requires sitting in a basket or walking or anything that doesn't include sucking on his paci while I am holding him... he isn't having it. I used to try to calm him down and pacify him by taking 20 mins to do a 5 min quick run in run out shopping trip. I would stop and find a cute something or another and make animal noises at him to calm him down. Or pull off to the side and pick him up and say, "what's wrong baby???" Well, those days are far gone. I love him, but for goodness sakes.... I AM TRYING TO FEED YOU CHILD!

So, my story was this.... We walk in and I try and put him in one of the Carts made for kids and adults. I actually would love to ride in one. I started laughing because it says for up to 200lbs. I visualized Chad pushing me around the grocery store for the heck of it... but back to reality. Preston immediately starts SCREAMING his head off. Throwing his paci, kicking his legs screaming NO MOMMY! So, I put him down and demand him to walk . Sydney and Cole are sitting so nice in the seat and trying to coax him into sitting with them. At this point I was so hungry from trying to eat healthy all day and was ready to get the heck up out of the place. He is screaming and crying and screaming and grabbing my leg. I am walking practically ignoring this 2 year old leach hanging from my leg. Finally I pick him up and sit him in the cart. As he fights me, I strap him in. I am sure I said something to him that would get social services called on me, but none the less, he sat there crying as loud as he could. I made  the belt tight and went on my merry way. I had a list to accomplish and sorry folks, I wasn't coming back when he calmed down...

As we are pushing down aisle, I had dirty looks from many people. I overheard one lady say, "she needs to pay him some attention." I thought to myself, if you have such a strong opinion, why don't you come over here and entertain him while I shop???? I didn't think so, so mind your biz wax. We get to the juice aisle where there are 4 or 5 people. Preston has a crowd, so he runs with it. WAAAA WAAAAA BBBOOOOO HOOOOOOO... A lady looks at him and looks at me. She says, "it looks like somebody needs to be taken home for a nap. Did he miss his nap?" My immediate response was this... NO, he didn't miss his nap and NO he doesn't need to go home for a nap. He is learning who is the boss, and it isn't him. I am not going to let a 2 year old tell me when I can and can't go to a store!!!! All of that should have been in caps because I was mad... Can I get an AMEN? She stared at me, shook her head and walked off. If she thought for one minute that I was going to put 3 kids back in a car, take him home for a nap and come back to the grocery store, she has LOST HER MIND!!!!

I am sure many of you are nodding your head and thinking exactly what I did.... For those of you who agree with her, either you don't have any kids OR your kids are perfect and you can mind your own business too. Mine are probably smarter than yours. :) jk.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A Busy Week For the babies.... and oh my littlest baby....

This has been a really busy week...Labor Day Monday, First Day of Pre-school for Sydney and Preston was Tuesday, Wednesday we took a trip to SC to visit my grandmothers grave, Thursday was their second day of pre-school, Saturday is t-ball practice and Sunday, well Sunday is my baby boys 2nd birthday....

Preston, how are you almost 2? Do you even know what kind of blessing you have been to us? If there were even words to tell you how in love I am with you, I would be talking all night. You are "The Big Surprise" and on a daily basis continue to be full of surprises. I can't imagine my life with out my baby boy.... God knew what he was doing when he surprised us with you

Your story went a little like this.... August 24th, 2008 your daddy and I proclaimed our faith in Jesus Christ... boy did we ever need it. We didn't know how much we would need to lean on him in the up coming months.... Sydney was 5 months old in August.... In December (the 16th to be exact) I had knee surgery... Sydney at this point was only 8 months old..... The doctors of course always ask, "is there a possibility you could be pregnant?" I clearly remember thinking, "if the answer was yes, I would need to be asked if I had a brain!" NO of course I'm not pregnant. I have an 8 month old baby at home... They perform surgery and to this day, my knee is like new :) Never once did I think twice about answering that question.

February 7th Sarah was having a bon fire at her house for our Sunday School class. I was trying to decide what I was going to wear. I slipped on my jeans (the ones you always wear when all else fails) and I went to button them and they were REALLY snug..... Huh? how did that happen? I just wore these.. First thing out of Chad's mouth was, you aren't pregnant are you? NO I'm not pregnant. I mean, how could I be pregnant.....of course I'm not pregnant...... So, that afternoon I decide, let me just take a test to get that out of the way and Monday I will start my diet.... Ring Ring, Hello... Chad? uh yea? I'm pregnant.... WHAT! You're WHAT? I look down and in CRAWLS Sydney.... OH.MY.GOODNESS. I already have a baby.... Chad immediately says to me, "that makes me so happy! Why are you crying?" Well, because Sydney just CRAWLED in the bathroom... She can't even walk yet!

Rewind to the weekend before this... Chad and I had talked about the whole do we want more than 2 kids? We were a little indecisive and decided we would pray about it. If God wanted us to have another baby, then he would give us peace about it. We weren't getting any younger and had decided if we were going to try for number 3, it would be soon after Sydney turned 1.... Well, God pushed it up a few months for us....

The best part of the story is I make my appointment at the doctor. They see me the next week... The nurse says, how many weeks do you think you are? Very dumbfounded I answer, I have no clue. I am going to guess 4? But I just had surgery so I am not sure how it would even be 4. I just don't know.... We do the ultra sound and I look up... I almost came off of the table. The Nurse says, "honey, this baby already has arms and legs... you are 11 weeks pregnant!" WHAT! How? You are kidding me???

The day I found out I was pregnant, even through the tears, I loved you. I knew you were the answer to the prayers your daddy and I had prayed about. Little did we know God had answered the prayers much sooner than we had asked. This is proof that God goes BEYOND the BEYOND. You have been an amazing blessing to this family that I like to believe has been completed.

When you were born, Sept 11th, the doctor says, "IT"S A BOY!!!" Your daddy looks at me with tears running down his face and says, "Cole is going to be so happy!" and yes he was and has continued to be. From that moment, you and I have had a connection no one else will ever experience. I knew you would be exactly who you are... You have always been a Mama's boy. You have always held tight to me no matter what... Your beautiful blue pouty eyes look up at me and my heart melts. Every little thing about you is perfect. The way you says MaMA really loud makes my heart melt, the way you rub my face when you hold me, the way you rub your cheek against mine when we say your prayers, The way you kiss me when you think I am hurt, the way you look at me when I pick you up after not seeing you for just a few hours... All of these things melt my heart...

You are going to be 2 years old in just a few days. Where have these past 2 years gone? You are already such a big boy going to pre-school where they say you love to hold on to the basketball.... You are a perfect little angel Preston. Your sister and brother adore your every move. Cole misses you when the two of you are apart and Sydney is always thinking about you and how she can make you happy.... You are just Perfect....

I have been told that everyone needs a girl because they are the ones that continue to love you when you are old.... I can tell everyone this.... I am so happy I have my girl because she is my mini me and my little side kick. But, I say everyone needs both.... The day you choose your wife over me, I will be able to take a look back and say, I taught you well. well done my baby boy..... Your love for her will be a result of the love you and I have today.... And I also like to believe (just like Cole has promised me) that you will still love me, hug me and kiss me.... Even when you are 40.... :)

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Sassy Sister.....

My Sydney... what more do I need to say... She is the light of most of my days.... the things that come out of her mouth are so comical. Although some may think they are a little disrespectful, I still have to laugh at her...

Everyday is full of many one liners. Anyone who reads my facebook status updates saw just a few from yesterday. She is relentless. She is so strong willed and independent. She wants to do everything by herself while talking to you 100 miles a minute. She already knows everything, yet has so many questions. Her heart is so big and loves everybody and everything...

Last night, we rented a movie called Hachi. It is about a man who found a dog at a train station. Later in the movie, the man is rubbing the dog and stands up because he daughter comes outside to tell him she is pregnant. When he stands up, the dog doesn't follow him.  I look over and Sydney is balling. I said, "Syd, what is wrong?" She says, "something is wrong with that doggy! he won't follow his dad!" She was so heart broken... I said, "Sydney, he is ok." She turns around and looks at me and says, "just stop! You don't know what you are talking about!" oh Sydney... Then later the movie was even more sad, and she started crying again and said, "mommy, just turn it off. I can't watch anymore!"

Another thing she said last night... I told her not to go outside because there could be snakes in the back yard. She asked me what their names were. I told her I wasn't sure. She says, then they aren't back there if you don't know. She is so serious with what she says. 

This morning we went to Church and when I picked her up from her class, I said "Syd, did you have a great time!" She says, noooooo. I don't like that teacher anymore! She told me to be quite!" I asked her if she was talking when she wasn't supposed to be talking and she tells me she was JUST talking. I asked what she said when the teacher told her to be quite. She says, "I said YOU BE QUITE!" Obviously this is disrespectful, so I said SYDNEY! You can not talk to adults like that. She says, she isn't an adult Mommy, she is a teacher.(which PS, I found out later she did NOT say that to the teacher. She said she was sorry to the teacher!) ohhhh Sydney.

After Church we came home to get ready for the big train ride.... I was cleaning the kitchen while Chad was "watching" the kids. I hear him say, SYDNEY! What are you doing???? Her reply???? GOOD! I knew something was up, so I went in the den and realized she was upstairs in the bathroom.... CUTTING HER HAIR! AND Barbies hair. Barbie got the worst of it, but boy it wasn't pretty!!!! What do we do with this strong willed child! I said WHAT ARE YOU DOING????? With a real serious look, she says, "cutting my hair..." I told her she looked like she had a mullet.... Her response? "I like Mullets."

This is just a small glimpse of my day with this independent, strong willed, cutie patootie, Pookie Bear..... I hope she never lets anyone walk all over her and I am pretty sure she will always be the Sassy Sister!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Rather a Holy Roller than a Hypocrite

That was pretty strong..... But how true??? Sunday, Grant Staubs preached and I personally thought it was an amazing service.... At one point during service, he was giving an example of being a Christian and how we can be perceived. He made mention of how you are viewed in the work place or in social environments.. Do we stand up for what we believe or do we go with the flow to avoid being called a Holy Roller??

Hey, Rather a Holy Roller than a hypocrite... that's what he said and I gave an under the breath Amen to that one.... Holy Roller, Bible beater.... don't they go as one in the same? I remember growing up and thinking those Bible beaters get on my nerves. I don't want anyone shoving the bible in my face and telling me what I am doing wrong. I mean really, who wants to go with out make up and have to wear their hair long and in a bun and a skirt to your ankles and shirts that cover up to your neck in the summer???? Ha! Kendall, did you think they were trying to turn you Amish ????? I was just ignorant to what I was refusing... It is funny now to look back and see how much I didn't know.

The reason I loved this sermon is because it really made me think... When I was working outside of the home, it wasn't a question what my beliefs were. I had many people come to me and ask me to pray for them for certain reasons, and would ask me questions about different things when it came to religion. I have shared the gospel with many of them. I was never afraid I would be looked at differently, but nor did it bother me if they did.... Here on earth I get to choose.... Risk someone thinking I am not cool.... OR risk not sharing what I know about Jesus and heaven... In the end, it wasn't the cool guy that I answer too.... It is the BIG guy, so I would choose the less cool thing to do. I can't really recall ever being singled out for it either. BUTTTTT I can guarantee you I would have been singled out if I were the hypocrite... You know, the one saying "trust in the lord with your problems!" While I sit in the corner and drink my problems away... I am sure I would be "that" Christian who is such a hypocrite... Just sayin..

So, back to my reasoning for saying this. When I was a new Christian, I was on fire for the Lord. I wanted everyone to know about what I had missed out on... As you grow in your walk, you go one of two ways... You either ignite your fire, or your fire fizzles... why would we let our fire fizzle? Jesus didn't let his fire fizzle for us as he hung on the cross... beaten to a pulp..... names being thrown at him.... waiting to die... All of this for us... But most of us think, well... God loves us too much to do blah blah blah... Or would you refuse your child if he did something against you? Then why would God? I ask, Why would God send his only begotten son to die for our sins... Yes, hang there so WE can live and take our pains and our lashes and you can't give him more than a "God loves me too much????"  As a Christian, it is our duty to love on others, including and especially the unsaved. They deserve hope just as much as we do... some more than we do..... If you are a Christian, and you are a hypocrite, who are you bringing closer to God? Who are you sharing your testimony and the Gospel with? Or are you afraid too because you haven't lived your life for him since becoming a Christian? Instead you have lived your life for others or for our own selfish nature and now you are afraid of being called a hypocrite?

If there was someone you barely knew and you heard them screaming inside of a Burning building... would you keep walking or would you try to help them? Then why wouldn't you help them outside of that burning building and share what you know with them to keep them from being in that burning hell for eternity? If it is because you have been hypocritical in your walk, then it is time you get back on track and let it make your testimony stronger... You show you are as human as the next and the Sheppard will always bring you back to where you should be...

So, if I have to choose, I am sticking to the fact that there is no limitation to save by many or by few..... I rather be a Holy Roller than a hypocrite... What about you???

Sunday, August 28, 2011

His Heart Is Pure

On Friday night, August 26th, 2011 my precious Cole decided it was time.... We were sitting at the dinner table, just He, Syd, Preston and myself talking about what ever came up.... Last Sunday our Awana's program at Church started back for the new semester. Cole is so proud, he is a SPARK! When we picked him up, he couldn't wait to tell me the verse he learned... For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life... John 3:16. Now, for those of you who know Cole (or even me, because I talk about him all of the time) would say, of course he can remember that! He is smart! BUT when he said it, I thought, That is really good because it is really long. So, I pulled out the little book that they gave him and started to read it. It is a little story about SPARK getting lost in the dark. It goes on to talk about God sending his son to die for our sins, and how we couldn't take the punishment for ourselves... It goes into depth about trusting Jesus to be our Lord and Saviour.... I thought, how cute.... maybe this planted a little seed... I wasn't really prepared for the seed it planted.

Back to Friday night.... Cole asks me a few questions about heaven. I thought it was just his curiosity. Every morning, we pray as a family before Chad leaves for work. Cole says to me, Mommy... In the morning, does daddy ask Jesus in his heart when we pray. I said, no, Daddy asked Jesus in his heart a long time ago. But every morning Daddy ask Jesus to keep us safe and he thanks him for coming into our heart. Cole ask me a few more questions about people who don't ask Jesus in their heart. I wasn't really sure where to go with this one since he is only 5, soon to be 6. So, I kind of steered away from the question and tried to change the subject. Cole brings the subject right back. He ask me why some people don't ask Jesus in their heart. I explained to him that not all people go to Church and many choose to live a different life than Jesus wants us to live.... In a really serious voice, kind of low, he says, "Mommy.... I really want to ask Jesus into my heart... can I?" I nearly choked on my food. I was thinking, "does he know what he is asking???, does he understand yet???? Then I thought, how dare me question this. It is his little heart and when he is ready, I can't take that away from him.

I proceeded to tell Cole, you can ask Jesus in your heart when ever you are ready. You don't have to do it until you are ready and understand what it means. He tells me he understands what it means. It means that Jesus dies on the cross for our sins, and a sin is when we do something against the way God wants us to do it and when we ask him into our hearts, we are choosing to love Jesus. With tears in my eyes, I asked him if he wanted to do it right then. I could do it with him.... He says, No mommy. I want to wait for Daddy. He prays with us everyday, and I know he wants to hear it too.... Oh my sweet boy... I can't even begin to explain how much his honestly touches me, touches our family.... From the day I found out I was pregnant with him, I always knew he would be who he is. I loved him the moment I found out I was pregnant with him, as much as I love him now. Don't get me wrong, I love my other two this much as well, but I will save that for another blog....

So, Chad gets home and you can tell all night it has been on his mind. A few times I would ask him what he was thinking about and he would say, just Jesus mommy. We laid down for bed and he started his little prayer..... Lord, thank you for everything we have and everything we need.... Lord, will you please come into my heart????? And continued to bless the entire family..... Little does he know, he really blessed me.... I am laying there and I am thinking to my self, one day when we all die, he has assured me he will be heaven right there beside me and Chad......

You know, some people won't understand this, some will kind of understand, but not think it is as big of a deal as I know it to be.....and some will say he was just too young to understand... I say, you don't know my Cole and you don't know his heart... Jesus works in mysterious ways... I believe he has big plans for my praying warrior who doesn't eat a meal with out blessing it and doesn't close his eyes with out thanking God for putting us here and all together... His little heart is so pure... He has so much love for us, for his friends and for Jesus....

I know we may be different than a lot of families. I  have had friends, and co-workers ask me why I don't do some of the "social norms." This is why I don't.... It isn't because I think they are bad for doing the "social norms" or because I think I am too good because my Love for Jesus is better than theirs... Not at all... This is why I choose to live the way that I live. Our Children watch everysingle thing that we do... We have taught our children to pray in our house more than the normal blessing our food or saying the now I lay me down to sleep. We have taught them to trust Jesus in everything that they do. To pray about things before they are done. We have a weekly Bible Study in our home and our children see us opening up our house for others to learn about Jesus... These seeds are planted.. It doesn't matter how old they are... 2,3 or 5. They see you, they watch you, they mimic our every move. They want to be just like us... how could I choose to live any differently than I long for them to be???

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Being A Brave Woman

This morning started a new Women's Bible Study at Church. I had considered skipping this session because I am a little overwhelmed lately with different responsibilities.... Yes, overwhelmed, tired, exhausted and..... WORN OUT..... Maybe next semester I will join in, I thought. I just need to get things in order and on a schedule and then we will see.... No plans to do it at all.

I get an email a few days ago from the person who is heading the study up.... It pretty much says, get ready for lesson one.... It is on being "worn out!" OH NOOOOO I said.... God! Do you hear me???? Not right now.... I am too busy..... I am too busy making my own plans.... doing my own things.... I already said I will do this next semester. Please don't let ANYTHING else in this study draw me to it, I just don't have the time right now..... So, I do a little research. Angela Thomas is the Author and BRAVE questions women ask... that is the title. So, I have a little discussion with God on this. I said, ok. I will go. BUT I am only going to go to this one day so I can come back and say, it really won't pertain to me this session....

I get in to class this morning, get my book and open it up... Dear Lord, I surrender to you. You win... The chapters go a little like this.
Week One- Why am I Worn Out
Week Two- I am Suffering a Thorn
Week Three- I am Undisciplined
Week Four- I am Trembling Inside
Week Five- I am Invisible
Week Six- I am Broken

Sure, don't we all want to say, My life is pretty perfect. I am a strong woman, a strong Mom, I have it all together. I am none of the above. Yea, right..... We had to go around the class and say which week we were either looking forward to or NOT looking forward to... As many of us are moms, wouldn't it be easy to say, Oh I am just worn out.... OR we could all be honest and say I am 2 or 3 or ALL of the above. I am not perfect and LORD speak to me through this study.  I mean really, who wants a room full of ladies to know that we are broken and feel invisible and have a thorn to deal with? As Lou Ann put it best, you don't want your situation to be someone else's prayer request when really they were just telling someone else how "broken" you are!!!!

A little excerpt from the book is as follows: I had breakfast with my girlfriend yesterday, and she's just worn out. Her kids aren't babies anymore, but her exhaustion is completely understandable. Her family has been caught in the recession, like most of us, and they have found themselves with three houses, two of them for sale in a poor seller's market. The renter of one just decided to walk away from her lease yesterday. We sat together over pancakes, and I told her I would pray for a miracle. An hour ago she texted, " When it rain, it pours. My college sophomore just lost half of his financial aid for next semester. More prayers needed."

I share this because can't we fit our selves some way, shape, or form into this paragraph. Different story, Different situation, but the same circumstance???? Today, I learned It is very brave to finally say, "I am not superwoman."  Proverbs 30:1 says, "The man declares, I am weary, O God; I am weary, O God , and worn out."  OHHHH how I can relate to this. I can relate to being sooo worn out. But I can also relate to many more. Today is just the first day of the study. I have 6 weeks to dig a little deeper into myself. I am a little afraid to get into each chapter because I am sure I will see where I am broken, where I feel invisible, where I feel a thorn and will be trembling inside...

Being a stay at home Mom for the past 8 months has really brought out many of these feelings in myself. Before when I was working, I still would have these feelings at times, but I was Needed outside of the home and for me it was easier to not have these feelings. More than anything, I wanted to be a SAHM. MORE THAN ANYTHING..... I believe God made this possible, and in the meantime he has taught me a lesson. He is teaching me to deal with emotions that will bring me closer to him. Two other excerpts from this lesson brings me to believe this. One is, "trust that God is always working in the unseen for your joy and His glory will transform the timid heart into a brave one." Another one is, Our Redeemer pursues, loves and restores broken women. I want to live every day brave for his glory.

Lord, You have humbled me more than once and every time I think I am back in charge, you show me that I need you every step of the way. Thank you for humbling me Lord. Thank you for loving me. Thank you for not only having me need you, but for being there to get me through.... It is a scary world to be all alone in and truth is, we are never alone....

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

You need some help with dat der tire????

My love of a southern accent..... Today, the little ones and I were walking, and Cole was riding his bike. It never fails in the same spot, Cole's training wheel starts to loosen. All of the sudden, it is completely loose and he falls over... (not to mention, he learned to ride with no training wheels a few months back. After a hard fall, he went back to his trainin wheels.... per his request.) A boy was passing by us and I hear him holler out.... "You need some help with dat der tire?????" I couldn't help but laugh. He didn't look familiar and our neighborhood isn't THAT big. I asked if he lived in the neighborhood. He said, "no mam, justa visitin.... I'm from Warsaw." I wanted to ask if his name was Opie, but he was too cute to pick on. AND,  I am pretty sure there are many who want to ask if my name is Opie when they hear me speak.

Cole was staring at this 8 or 9 year old boy as he wrestles with Cole's training wheel. He says, "mam, I think I know whats da problem here." I said, "well... please tell me, I really need the opinion of an expert like yourself ;)." He says, "mam, you got some cheap training wheels.... these types of training wheels are just made cheap. Dey don't really make good training wheels deese days." I had to contain myself from busting out laughing... He says, "mam, If I were you, I'd get dem training wheels like my diddy got me. You know, they have dat bar dat goes in between dem. Dey real good. I hate to tell you dat, but it's the problem for sure."

Needless to say, Cole was in tears when we walked away. He was upset that his daddy and I put cheap training wheels on his bike... after I tell Cole they aren't cheap training wheels, Cole turns around and shouts at the boy "HEY! MY MOMMY SAYS THEY AREN'T CHEAP!!!!!"

So, the next time your training wheels fall off, just know that if you need some help with dat der tire,.... your training wheels were probably just cheap. :)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My Mama

When you think back to growing up, most of your childhood memories include your Mama and Daddy. For some, it is their biological parents, some... their adoptive parents, and some... A man and woman who really made a difference in their lives.  All I know is, I sure do love my Mama.... I mean really, who could take the place of your Mama?

For me, My Mama has had an impact on most of every single thing in my life.... I can tell you, growing up, I thought life was perfect. Home was safe, home was fun, Mama and Daddy were always with us. They never really left us with babysitters. Usually My Mah (grandmother) would come and watch us if my parents had plans, but other than that, we were always with my parents. Very rarely do I remember my parents getting frustrated with us. I am pretty sure that they did, because I mean..... well.... I guess I was pretty close to being a perfect child :).... but none the less, I am sure we got on their nerves every once and a while. BUT they always included us happily in everything they did. They absolutely LOVED us! Or at least that is the way I felt.

Growing up, my Mama and Daddy always gave us fun, but simple, birthday parties... you know a slumber party with about 45 hungry girls! The next day, we always went to the State Fair, and Daddy always rode the big rides with me... We would go the lake every summer and camp and water ski.... Every Christmas, my Daddy always made sure we were home to enjoy our gifts, and we alllllwwwwaaayyysss did... Mama usually stayed out all Christmas Eve finishing, (or maybe even starting) her Christmas shopping.... We always put out the bags with candles in them around the neighborhood.... and SEVERAL times during the Christmas holiday, we would ride around and see the Christmas lights.....

One specific thing I always remember my Mama did was tell me how beautiful I was.... and I swear, I think she believed it.... She would go on and on and on about how pretty my dress looked on me and my hair and my make up and my shoes...... I look back now at MANY of those pictures that included all of these compliments and I laugh.... BY NO MEANS is that pretty.... BUT she believed I was, so I believed I was. I also laugh because I always ask her why somebody didn't tell me to loose some weight or brush my hair or pluck my eyebrows.... to this day, she still says, "because you were beautiful." I always remember this when I am talking to my children. I always tell them how beautiful I think they are... apparently it works because Syd says, "you already told me that mommy."

When I was in college, I wanted to come home every weekend to see my parents. There was nothing I loved more than sleeping with my Mama and getting my head and back scratched and rubbed... Eating food from home, and just feeling safe...

When I bought my first house, My Mama was the first one to give me her approval. By no means would I have bought something she thought wasn't right for me.... When Chad and I got engaged, of course My Mama was the first I called and the one to help plan my wedding... And YES, every dress I put on she would say, "Kendall, you look so beautiful." Then I was pregnant with Cole.. Then Syd.... Then Preston and each time she would say, "Kendall, you look so beautiful."

She stayed up all night with Cole after I had him because I was afraid for him to go to the nursery.... They could have taken him to another hospital for 8 hours and I wouldn't have ever know because I was passed out from all the medication during surgery... But she didn't let them take him.. Instead, she held him all night... When I had my gallbladder removed and had major complications, she stormed the hospital floors waiting for answers... After I had Sydney and Preston, she came and stayed as long as I needed her.....

My children love her so much and so do I. She comes here so I can take simple phone calls, or so I can go to the doctor, or any excuse I really have..... they will all get her in the car to drive 2 hours....

If it was up to me, we would move back to Greenville and I could see my Mama and Daddy every day... I hope Cole, Syd and Preston have these memories about me...Ezekiel 16:44 "As is the mother, so is her daughter."

Sunday, August 21, 2011

This is what you get.....

This is what you get when you leave a 3 year old in the den with her 5 year old brother while you are starting dinner.....

From Right to Left, Mommy, Daddy, Cole, Sydney and Preston... courtesy of Syd...

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The giggles of 3....

Yesterday brought me and the kids so many giggles... How blessed I am! We really didn't have much on the schedule. Just the usually, dropping off at school, taking walks, playing with play dough and coloring, making the beyblades crash into each other, running errands and picking back up from school..... BUT it doesn't take much around here to keep us in stitches.... counting my little blessings, because my cup overflows...

It all starts with the amount of times Sydney changes clothes... Many people have said, "that would drive me crazy! I would put a stop to it!" OHHHH... go fly a kite! It is hilarious. She always dresses herself first thing in the morning, so proud of what she puts on. A couple of times through out the day she will end up in some long pants and a sweat shirt. She tells me she likes being hot. Then she will put on tennis shoes and socks and get down the stairs and say her feet are COLD, so she takes them off and puts on her flip flops.... Sure it creates a lot of laundry, but most of the time she changes and put what she had on back into her draw, so you never even knew it was out. :) I like to assume she will be a fashionista in her adult life....

Sydney will boss Preston around  and you will hear him screaming NOOOOOOO all morning. She picks him up, she drops him... he laughs... with his belly. He loves it! Cole takes his PJ's off and will walk around with just his underwear on for a while. When I tell him to put his clothes on 75 times, he will say, "sorry mommy. I keep telling my brain to do it, and my Brain keeps telling me not to." Sorry... I think that is funny. I used to be so uptight, and still can be, but who really cares and what does it hurt? That is my new motto. Choose your battles, If it doesn't hurt anyone, that one is no longer a battle.

We had to drive Chad's truck yesterday because someone hit me in the carpool line and Chad had my car getting an estimate.... On our way to pick Cole up from school, Syd said she wanted to watch a movie. I told her daddy didn't have a DVD player in his car... She was serious and said, "Mommy, daddy isn't working... He is sitting in the back of your car watching a movie!" I could only imagine it. :)

After dinner, the kids and I went to Dairy Queen and this is where our giggles were loud. First, we walk in and the people in front of us WON'T move up, so Cole cuts in front of them. He looks up at the man and says, "you weren't moving.." I probably should have told him it was rude, but hey, he was right.... We get our Ice Cream and go outside to eat. I take a few bites and I realize my banana split blizzard has no bananas or strawberries... Sydney decides she is going to go in and get my bananas and strawberries because "that's not right mommy! they shouldn't do that to you!" So glad I have a fighter in the group! The night goes on from Cole telling me "that nice Chinese lady has a nice Conmyrtle (convertible)" to Preston trying to kill flies with his spoon, Sydney saying, "don't drink all of my sprite" over and over again like rain man.... Cole tells me story about a a boy at school that stinks named David that later I learned didn't even exist and he thought that was a great joke to tell... and Preston "inks" me while crying for throwing away his melted ice cream...

All of these giggles are a typical day in our house... sometimes they go un-noticed... shame on me. Sometimes I am so worn out from a day of trying to keep the giggles from turning into tears, that I forget to stop and enjoy them... Up until December, when I quit working outside of the home, I missed alot of those giggles... BUT I would always get a playback from Debbie as to how these giggles happened, who laughed, who cried, and who laughed again... she appreciated the giggles..... I am learning to slow down and enjoy those giggles too, because they sure are funny!

Friday, August 19, 2011


According to the Online Dictionary, a friend is- A person whom one knows, likes, and trusts. I guess this is pretty accurate, but I need a different way to describe a particular "friend". I wanted to blog about her because she really means so much to me.... Her name is Olivia....

Let me say before I start that I have many really good friends. I could probably write a blog about each one of them, but today, it is Olivia. She really truly defines the real meaning of a friend. She has never once in the past 25 years I have know her swayed even the slightest from being my friend.

I met her when I was in the 5th grade. We were in the same class and I really really liked her from the beginning. She was new to our school, but I had been friends with others who had known her or lived near her before the 5th grade. But she became my "friend" in the 5th grade.

All of the things that define Olivia- She is caring, trustworthy,  honest, selfless, giving, inspiring, truthful, talented, smart, funny, beautiful... I could really go on.... When I look back on our friendship, I can't ever point out a time that she ever once turned her back on me or didn't include me. She always made me apart of everything she did. Most importantly, she introduced me to Christ. She was always the little angle on my shoulder saying, "hmmmmm, is that the right thing to do???" She always invited me to Church camp with her in the summer, and I always knew when I walked in her house her mom would ask me if I had been to Church. Olivia is that friend that no matter how long it has been since you have talked or seen each other, there is no awkwardness....

One thing I have always appreciated about Olivia is she has never judged me. She may ask if I thought certain things were right, but she never judged me. She always shared the truth, but always loved me no matter what... Anytime I have had troubles in my life, she has been there to talk to and pray for me.. Anytime I have every had successes in my life, she has been my biggest Cheerleader. She always supports me with no jealousy and no judgment. That is a friend...

I have called Olivia ALOT in the past 3 years. Anytime I need professional advice, I know I can call her and she always has me in her best interest. Just recently, I have decided to pursue a few dreams of my own. Knowing this is a time in my life where I can either act on it or let it pass by.... Who did I call? Olivia. I know she has so much Biblical wisdom. I shared with her some things that others have mentioned as concerns.... She ALWAYS brings it back home. She always brings it back to where it all matters. The best Advice has come from her. This time it was, Kendall, The only ones you answer to is God and your husband. Other than that, no one. Don't let anyone else make you feel like you are not making a good decision. If God has laid it on your heart, then that is what you do..... All it really took was hearing Olivia tell me that. Sometimes I get too wrapped up in making sure it is right instead of knowing if my gut says it is, that is all that matters...

Olivia- I knew when we put our picture in the Year Book with the Lyrics to Michael W Smith's Friends song, we would be friends forever.... although I laugh because that song was referring to a friend that had passed, and we were just going to college. :) But you will be my friend forever because the Lord's the Lord of us! Love you friend!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

STOP THE CLOCK!!!! and be thankful...

I was just slapped in the face with how fast time flies.... I decided today was the day to go through some of Sydney's clothes and pass them down... First of all, I am not sure what happened to all of her 18-24 month old clothes. Did they just disappear???? But... I was packing up many of her clothes and with each piece of clothing, I had a specific memory or picture that I remember... Although I am so thankful she is healthy and happy, it made me sad. Where did all of that time go?

I remember this one little outfit that was my favorite!!!! It was a 9 month outfit, and wasn't she just wearing it yesterday? It is a candy cane striped romper with a velvet green dress that went on top of it.. It has this BIG Christmas tree on it, and I remember when she used to sit there and try to pull the ornaments off of it... While I was going through her boxes, I laughed at how unorganized I am... ( a professional organizers dream!) I was pulling out some of Cole's stuff, and Prestons... The outside of the box says, Girls 18months- 24months.... NO, it was some 6 months, 9 months, 2T, 3T and many boy clothes as well. :)

I also saw a pair of Prestons green sweat pants.. They were my favorite. He was so cute wearing them... when did I pack those away??? Don't they fit him now???? Oh.... 9 months... far from a 2T. boo hoo.... As I was sorting through boxes, I pull one out that was filled with all of Cole's 3T clothes. As teared came to my eyes, I had to stop. My babies are growing up.... Where has all of this time gone? Why am I not appreciating my time more than I am???? Why are my days going by with out me making the most out of it? WAIT... Or is it just my memory? Regardless, I want time to stop sometimes and just enjoy the moment.

This brings me to being Thankful that I have all of these clothes and all of these memories to shead a tear over...

Psalm 118:28You are my God, and I will give you thanks; you are my God, and I will exalt you.

2 Corinthians 4:15
All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.

1Thessalonians 1:2
We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers.

2 Corinthians 9:11You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.

Psalm 69:30
I will praise God's name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.

1 Corinthians 15:57
But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Psalm 118:19
Open for me the gates of righteousness; I will enter and give thanks to the LORD.

Jonah 2:9
But I, with a song of thanksgiving, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. Salvation comes from the LORD."

Thank you Lord for the many blessings you bestow on my family.. Thanks Jesus, and INKS from Preston....

Monday, August 15, 2011

Letting Go.....

Before I actually start writing about what I really came to write about, I have to share something cute about my kids. This morning I went to let out a friends dog. When I got home (45 mins later) my kids came running to me as if they hadn't seen me all day! It was pretty refreshing and a quick reality check of my blessings.... Cole was so proud to tell me he had slept in his bed all night (as if I didn't sleep here last night to already know :) ), he also couldn't wait to tell me he had already brushed his teeth.... Sydney comes around the corner to show me how proud she was that she had already put her clothes on with out anyones help.... I guess she doesn't remember that everday she changes clothes about 3-4 times with out anyones help :). BUT I was so proud of her. As soon as Preston sees they are getting attention, he breaks right through them to make sure he is noticed! Love them!!!

Today was Sydney's first day of dance class. She did so good. I loved watching her through the window in the waiting room. Preston of course cried when she went into class. As if he was going to be nice to her if she were out there playing with him.... After dance, we went to the park with a friend.... what a beautiful day, and what a blessing that I am able to do these things...

So, to get to the purpose of the blog today.... Letting Go... Do you know what is next? Yep, and LETTING God. The main word here is LET....

Yesterday we were in Greenville and went to Church with my sister. I love going to her Church. Her preacher is amazing. He captures your attention immediately and always gives a salvation message...It was funny that his message yesterday was exactly what I have had on my heart. That is Letting Go and Letting God.... For me, why does it have to be so hard with certain things. I mean really, I have let go of so much. Ask Chad! When he met me, I was an independent-outspoken-in control-don't tell me what to do kinda girl. I could do ANYTHING a man could do, and probably better. My Daddy taught me well. He taught me how to work and save my money, he taught me how to mow grass, and put things together and take things apart and to not be afraid of work. I have never been afraid to be alone or do things for myself. I mean.... that's what I did best.... After getting married, we combined our bank accounts.... THAT for me was Letting Go. Do I really have to let go of anything else? ok..... So we start tithing as God asks us to do, and I LET GO..... do I have to let go of anything else? I let my husband be in charge of our finances.... Kendall... Is that you? I really don't recognize you??? OK I let that Go and followed God's plan for finances.... do I have to let go of anything else???? Really! I became a stay at home mom in December.... Surely I have let go of enough.....

Well, not really. The funny part of it all is I would have thought all of this would have made me miserable... Far from it. I have experienced more joy since following God's plan... so far... But there is more to go... So my question is, if I have Let Go of all of these things and trusted God and his plan and I have experienced more joy than I have ever had in my life, then why is it so hard to keep letting go??? The proof is in the pudding... It is called FLESH! It is called being human....

Galatians 5:16- (NLT) LET the Holy Spirit Guide your life, then you won't do what your sinful nature craves...... This is why. Because we all have a sinful nature, it is called our FLESH.  So why is it hard to live by the Spirit's Power? Because of the flesh....

Galatians 5:16-21-  17 The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. 18 But when you are directed by the Spirit, you are not under obligation to the law of Moses.
19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

Based on my life, what else do I need to give up? Probably the same thing that is hard for others to give up. Of all of these results.... QUARRELING, JEALOUSY, OUTBURST OF ANGER, SELF AMBITION.... how many times does Chad walk in and I bark at him for doing or saying something wrong? How many times do my kids do something that I don't agree with and I huff and puff or shake my head and scream STOP in a negative voice? Back to being a stay at home mom... I have had numerous calls about going back to work with great companies and making great money! Not that a woman working is a sin... IT is not.... but for me I know my calling right now is to be home. It is what God has planned for me and my children. To go against his plan would be sinful and SELFISH AMBITION hmmmm... so hard.... JEALOUSY... wow this one can be strong and hard to face. How many times do you wish you had what someone else had?  So many of these.... They have to be LET Go of and Let God....

I have had such PEACE in the past 3 years. All of the changes I have made in my life, Allowing my husband to lead our family, letting go of material things, Praying for my husband to make the right decisions and to follow God's plan... And believe me, when you pray for this, GOD SHOWS UP.... I have alot more to work on. It doesn't just end with being PRIDEFUL that I have done these things... You have a long way to go Kendall... But praise God I am willing to keep going.... Just do it Kendall. Let Go and Let God!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Who says a little sugar never hurt anyone?????

About 6 months ago, we decided to cut out Red coloring from all of the kids foods as well as cut back on sugar. I had several people say, ohhhh that's silly. A little sugar never hurt anyone..... When we cut out the Red (rewind back 6 months ago, Syd was only drinking V8 splash), it was around her 3rd birthday. She was having temper tantrums ALL the time. She would loose it over ANYthing.....I did some research, and figured out the red probably had a lot to do with her mood swings, as well as the sugar in the juice... (although Chad says it was the red in my hair that was coming out in her tantrums...I say, who me? I never did anything like that as a child! Right mom???) Almost immediately, I saw a huge difference in her. Those same people who said, A little sugar never hurt anyone also said, oh, it is her age. She has grown out of those tantrums.... You and Chad are over reacting.... (Chad's reaction.... over reacting about what? What did we do? OH! we don't give her Red anymore? and cut out some sugar? ok!)

Well people.... did you see her today? Remember in my last blog, one great thing about coming home is the kids get anything they really want including an unlimited amount of sugar??? :) I think Sydney had 4 cups of Hawaiian punch and 2 sprites. As well as some ice cream and some skittles. For all you people who didn't see her tantrum, be glad. Ask my Mama. She thought she was crazy! A little sugar, shoooooot! She started around 3 o'clock with her melt down. Screaming about a little bit of everything down to not buckling her into her seat belt right..... It ended with her slapping Chad in the face.... wait..... It really didn't end there. It kinda ended after the spanking she got for slapping her daddy in the face.... Hey Chad, you remember asking if we cut out the food coloring and sugar??? Bet you remember why now.... I am sure he still thinks its the red from my hair coming out in her tantrum! ;)

On a cute note though, Cole ended the night by saying his prayers and giving his praises. He praised God that Syd didn't have a fever anymore... and Preston... well, he asked to go night night and when I laid him down and said his prayers, he looks up and says, INKS Mommy..... you are welcome sweet baby... and pookie, well she will wake up in the morning the same little girl that she was about 2 weeks after her birthday and we will hope there isn't a repeat of today, because YES a little sugar has ever hurt anyone.... It hurt her daddy tonight! :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

There's no place like home, There's no place like home.... say it toto... Toto???

Even though Fuquay is our "home", for me, there is no place like home. Like your mama and daddy's house. It doesn't even matter if the house they are in is or isn't the same one you grew up in. It also doesn't even matter if they live in the same town.....Both apply to me, but still... There is no place like home.

Coming to Greenville brings a since of Joy to me. My parents live here, my sister and her family lives here, I went to college here, I have friends still here. All of that is usually combined into a 2 day trip, and I usually don't get past mom and Shannon's.... but the thought that I could is great.....

Coming home means someone else cooking, and it is food that I really love. It means having my back scratched and my head and feet rubbed. It means breaking all the rules for the kids bath and bed times and they usually get as much sugar as they want... There's no place like home. The kids love all of mimi's toys, they love seeing their cousins, they even love seeing the little dogs that aren't real fond of them.

Our trips aren't always smooth. Such as this mornings trip. After having to go to the doctor for Cole and Syd due to a cough and a fever last night,  It took about 2 hours to pack 3 kids for a 2 day trip. The 2 hours consisted of picking out clothes and packing them and then realizing the suitcase is thicker than it had started out, so then you spend about 20 minutes unpacking all of the fleece PJ's and sweatshirts the kids put in the suitcase because they "REALLY NEED THEM MOMMY!!!" then after packing, you realize that you spent too long packing so the kids have taken apart the rest of the house. As you straighten up the rest of the house, you realize they have re packed their bags... and so on and so forth... you get my point. After finally getting in the car, Preston falls asleep and 5 minutes into the trip, a little voice in the pack says "I HAVE TO PEE!!" Really??? You didn't have to pee 5 minutes ago. So, in order not to wake up the baby, I go back home for a bathroom break.... But still.... their is no place like home...... About 5 minutes before it is time to exit, another voice from the back screams..." I HAVE TO POOP NOW!!!" , so like a good mother, I pull of 5 minutes before we are at our destination, because for goodness sakes, don't do it in your pants! That would be another hour!

We arrive and the the dog, Dodger (who I referred to as TOTO) slips out the door into an unfamiliar place.... oh no..... DODGER!!!!! But still, there is no place like home. :)

How happy it makes me to be home isn't even describable. (did I spell that right??) I love it here. I love having my parents. I love my happy place.... and my babies, they love it too! There is no place like home!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The imperfections of self....helped me find my salvation

As many of you know, I am a Christian. I will give you a WARNING WARNING BEEP BEEP WARNING before you continue to read. If you are overly sensitive to the TRUTH of the Bible, then keep reading. Your feelings may get a little out of sorts and you may think "those Christians are so judgemental" BUT once you say hey, GOD if this wacky woman is right..... Well show me she is. I give it all to you. I surender. I am betting my first born child that he WILL show up. And well... everyone knows how I feel about Cole, so thats a promise...

What does this have to do with balls, trains, dolls, tattles and tears...??? EVERYTHING. It has made me who I am to endure, understand, and be excited about all of the above. Not only that, it has shown me that with out me living for Christ, there is an even slighter chance that my children will.

Here it goes..... I have always had an open mind. I have always seen both sides of the story. ALWAYS. For 32 years... ALWAYS.... If you asked me, Kendall if you died today, would you go to heaven. MY answer? As many others, I would say... well I hope so. I am a good person. I believe in God and I try my best to do what is right.... Little did I know then that if I HOPED I would go, I was on my way to a much grimmer place than this Earth. I had grown up in Church. I was even baptised when I was 10 or 11. Do I remember why? Sure I do. I went through a confirmation class and they baptised me. If you asked me 5 minutes after that class what I had just learned? I would say.... how to eat 11 slices of pizza at Pizza Inn and not vomit... Or, so I wouldn't have to pay for my left over pizza from the buffet, I learned there was a hole in the bottom of the booth that you could throw your pizza under so no one could see it! But, that was the extent of what I had learned. I am pretty sure there were other kids who learned about Jesus Christ and felt a conviction to accept him as their savior, but me... I wasn't sure what all that was about.

So, I grew up going to Church, church camp, blah blah blah. I imagine these things planted little seeds in my heart because I really did try my best to be my best and do what was right. I didn't go with the crowd, usually against it. I had lots of friends and usually was the one they were afraid to tell stuff too because they thought I was going to think bad of them... Little did they know! I wasn't afraid of the act they were doing, I was afraid of the 6'4 man I call Daddy. Who ME! That would put me on the front page of the news paper and my daddy would KILL me!!! When I went to college, I always said I would find a church. I didn't. I found many great friends. A few boyfriends, a lot of parties, and a lot of memories... some of those memories are only remembered through pictures... Maybe college was where I didn't always try to do the right thing, but I wasn't dumb. I knew what was right and what was wrong.

SO.... forward many many years later.... I married my best friend, Chad. Neither of us saved. Neither of us really knew it either, nor was it even a topic.... until... We got pregnant with Cole. Immediately I started panicing. I started thinking WE DONT EVEN HAVE A CHURCH... Chad wasn't really for or against it. Just what ever I thought was ok with him. We had Cole and on and off we would visit different Churches. Chad usually had to stay in the nursery with Cole because he would scream his head off (that was satan working) and it was kind of an easy way out for Chad. He didn't have to go in and hear all the things he did that week weren't really part of the plan. Instead, I got to hear all of the things we did that week wasn't part of the plan, and I would come back and we would argue. (also Satans plan).

So, fast forward to Aug, 2008. Aug 8th, to be exact. Chad goes to play in a golf tournament with my dad. I am home with Cole and Sydney. I had been praying alot to please help us fill this hole where something was missing. I wasn't sure what it was. We had a good marriage, 2 kids, a dog. But there was always something missing. Something not right. Nothing to fall back on when times got hard. What was that? I didn't know, but I prayed hard to find out. While Chad was away, many things happened. (I will save that story for his blog.... and no, he doesn't have one.) He and my sister and her husband formed a bond that weekend that started us in the direction we are in now. (Shannon, my sister, and her husband are Christians and huge influances on us.) He came home and he made it a priority to find a church. NO Ifs ands or BUTS about it.

Fast forward to August 22nd. My neighbor came outside to tell me she and her husband couldn't participate in a neighborhood cook out we were having on Saturday. They had a commitment at the Church and were sorry.. NOW this neighbor and I had never really spoken. I had lived here for 3 years and this was the first time she had ever introduced herself.... GOD is all I can say. When she said Church, I said where do you go? She went on and on for over 20 minutes about Mid-Way Baptist. How wonderful it was..... ring ring ring... Chad, hey. It's me. I know where we need to try this Sunday. Tammy across the street said she goes to Mid-Way, so let's do this. OK!

Me, Chad and my best friend from home went that Sunday. August 24th. 2008. That morning, I have NO CLUE what the message was about. But what I do know is the pastor gave a salvation message that pulled on my heart so hard, I couldn't resist it. I assumed I was in this alone. He asked if you said the salvation prayer to just lift a hand and no one would come to you or say anything to you. It was between you and God. Everyones heads bowed and at the same time, Me, Chad and Sarah rose our hand. I walked that aisle that morning and gave my life to Christ. What an amazing journey it has been.

You know that hole I was talking about? It was like someone poured cement in that hole.... air tight. Nothing is missing now. Nothing.. Is my life perfect? absolutely not.  Do I have problems. ABSOLUTELY. Do I feel alone sometimes? not really. Because I know that my Lord, your Lord, our Lord is there with me. I always have someone to talk to. I always know my problems aren't too big for him. I am more thankful, more grateful, and more humble. You won't see me posting on fb how my life sucks.... Which comes to THE IMPERFECTIONS OF SELF.... If I dwelled on them, I would be telling Christ that you dying for me wasn't enough. And Ohhhhh was it enough... It was more than enough. And I thank him for it everyday.

John 14:6-Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 3:16-For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

What does this mean? This means, trust him. Ask him to come into your heart and save your soul. Accept his gift of eternal life. If you don't do that, you will not spend your eternal life with him. The bible is very clear on salvation. I used to argue this with Christians. I didn't even have a leg to stand on because I hadn't read the bible. I mean.... really. If I had, would I really have anything to argue about?

Oh, PS- If you are going to dis agree with me and tell me you view the bible differently???? Try reading it first. love you all!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Just a quick one.... I'm not alone..

I sign onto my computer and the home page comes up... What does it say? Mom's Confess their deep dark secrets... I am thinking, I am not alone. There must be other moms who have let their kids watch 3 hours of TV while they cleaned the house. moms who really wanted to go to the library, but it was so hot outside, the thought of looking at the sun would make them turn around.. Well, I'm not alone. I clicked on the link and GOODNESS! These moms are WACK, but maybe I am too..

Starting something new..... it would be a lie to call it a past time.

I have decided to start this blog because I love to share the funny things that happen in our family. I would lie and say, ohhh I am doing this for a past time. But.... no time for past times. Really no time for blogs, but memories that are made can be shared. If I can make a FB status update, I can update my blog. One promise I make is.... if you are a teacher, my typing will drive you crazy. I don't use proper punctuation, and I will mis-spell.... or is it mis spell or misspell... ????? I type as I speak. Believe me, I don't speak with many proper punctuations, I just speak with many punctuations..... Many mis-placed. Or would that be misplaced??? :)

Recently Chad lost a really good friend. His wife had mentioned that she would love to have all of the status updates he had made in the past 18 months.... This will be my status updates.... Not only have I personally morned for this family that I barely knew, but I have had a lot of moments through out the day of "what ifs" and "wonder ifs" and praying non stop for his wife.. A wife that I only met once, but that doesn't seem to matter. I always used to think, I wonder how a certain event in someones life can change another persons???? Now I know. I know that I don't want to take one single day as if it were owed to me. I also know that I want to make and record many memories for me and my family.

Just one to start my blog off with is Preston's new word. It started the other night, but today it has been said a dozen times. I laugh every time it comes out of his mouth. It is "THANKS" but it sounds a little more like Thinks, minus the T. Yes, INKS. He has said it to everything. Even when he has gotten in trouble. He wakes up and comes in my room. I pick him up and lay him down.... inks mommy. I put his clothes on..... inks mommy..... I changed his diaper while saying PRESTON! What did you eat?????? inks mommy..... I take away my cup of lemonade from him.... after he screams at me and I say no no Preston.... inks mommy......Are you ready to lay down Preston????.... inks mommy...... LOVE HIM.... inks Jesus, inks alot. You have blessed me beyond measure!