Monday, June 28, 2010

Good Neighbors

I was sitting out in my swing tonight lamenting the fact that I really can’t think of anything interesting to blog about these days when it occurred to me to talk about neighbors.

Jerry and I have lived in Lee Oak Estates since 2004. We were the first house back in this circle. Since then, we have acquired some of the nicest neighbors we’ve ever had.

I love my neighborhood because people are active here. In the last subdivision we lived in people drove by, waved and then pulled in their garages and closed the door. It was like they didn’t want to have to talk to anyone. (There were a few exceptions, but not many.)

Here, people get out and walk. They work in their yards. They smile and greet you. Some bring goodies from their gardens. Some mow our yards when we have a crisis (i.e. last summer.) Most attend church on Sunday morning. I wouldn’t hesitate to ask any of my neighbors to borrow a cup of sugar if I was in need and I feel they would ask me for whatever they need too. And even though we are older than anyone else in our circle, I consider them all my friends!  They are good people.

Yes, tonight as I was “just a swingin” I was thanking the Lord for my neighbors, my friends!

From Luke 10:

25On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?"  26"What is written in the Law?" he replied. "How do you read it?"  27He answered:  " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"  28"You have answered correctly," Jesus replied. "Do this and you will live."

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Postscript to Yesterday's Blog

My "no frills" girl wasn't happy that her team only won the runners' up trophy but her Gran and Papa were sure proud of all of them!  That's Gracie on the far right of the front row.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

My No Frills Girl

In August of 2001 I finally got the little girl that I had waited so many years for in my life. I envisioned dolls, frills, ballet, piano, etc., etc. etc. Turns out, my little girl is an awesome little athlete and I am very proud of her! My granddaughter, Elizabeth Grace, is a great little softball and soccer player and can hold her own with any of the three little guys in our family! I am so proud of her. She is also very girlie in a lot of ways and I hope she stays that way.  I have always told her to "play like a boy on the field and act like a girl when you come off!"  I spent last night and all of today at her softball tournament and they are still in contention. She always gives her all and is very competitive.

In the coming weeks I will be spending most of my free time at ballparks since Gracie, Alex and Aaron will be playing in tournaments. I am just excited that they want to be active because I think it is so very important for kids to have something that keeps them moving around. In this day of modern technology it is way to easy to become a sedentary person early in life.  I am so proud of all of them for doing their best and being rewarded with post-season play! I am looking forward to the rest of this summer!  Hope you enjoy the pictures of my little ball players!

Gracie and Nick's team was season and tournament champs

Seth was thrilled to finally get to be an "official" ballplayer!

Alex and Aaron provided many exciting moments at the park this year!


Thursday, June 10, 2010

This Season of My Life

Ecclesiastes 3

A Time for Everything
1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:
2 a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
6 a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.

These verses seem apt for where I am in my life these days. As I read them this morning during my “quiet” time I found myself wondering about the things that have been, the things that are and the things that will be. Lately, I have realized that I have most likely lived at least two thirds of my life (at best) and I feel as if there is so much more for me. I just can’t figure out what it is!

In looking back over my life I am satisfied, for the most part, with my history. I grew up in a fun and loving home where I was blessed in many ways. I enjoyed my school years and formed many traits that have been beneficial to me in my adulthood. I married the only man I ever loved and gained a wonderful mother-in-law who taught me so many things in life. I was so blessed with my two sons and I had the privilege of being able to stay at home and focus solely on raising them and my home and when I was in need of more of a challenge outside the home, God provided the perfect job for me. Within the blessing of that job came more opportunities to serve God and I have been blessed by teaching children and youth in Sunday School and providing an exercise ministry at our church. When life was getting a little more mundane God gave me grandchildren and life has not been mundane since!

Now, as I look toward the future, I feel a deep yearning to do something different. Not just anything though. I want to do something that makes a difference in people’s lives. I want God to use me to encourage and uplift others. I want to be able to be a witness for Him in the “things” that I might find to do and I feel I need to be free of commitments so that I can be available where I am needed. Now, all I have to do is figure out what it is I am needed to do!

I am praying that I heed God's leading in my life and that you too will seek His presence in your life and listen for His instruction!  Love and prayers for wonderful days ahead!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

My Own True Love

June 3, 1967...a very nervous 18 year old YOUNG lady is out of bed early and getting ready for the biggest day of her life.  She packs her bags, gets her hair done and does a million little things to pass the time until the 2:00 wedding.  At the church everything is hustle, bustle and to be perfectly honest, is sort of a blur to me now.  At 2:00 p.m. she walks down the isle on her Daddy's arm (trembling all the way.)  The I Do's are said, the reception short, and off to Gatlinburg, Tennessee for the honeymoon!

Fast forward.........................43 years later the same not-so-young lady is sitting beside a pool in St. Louis watching her grandchildren play.  WHERE DID THE TIME GO?  I don't know, but I do know that it has gone fast.

On this anniversary day I have to say that marriage has been good and I am married to the only man I have ever loved!  I have been blessed to have a man who has encouraged me to be who I am, even though it is completely opposite from him as far as personality goes!  If it had not been for him I probably would have made a fool of myself even more times than I have.  He is the quiet one who holds me back when I tend to get over-excited and out of control.  I am the one who nudges him to step out.  He has been a wonderful soul mate and my boys would be the first to tell you that they couldn't have a better Dad.

Of course we have had our ups and downs as do all couples, but thankfully the ups have far outweighed the bad.  The two children who married those many years ago are now enjoying our lives together as best friends. 

My advice to young couples today would be the same as a very wise wife and mother of seven children gave me back in the early years of my marriage:  Make sure you take time to be a couple.  Being parents is very important but sometimes we get caught up in the parenting and forget to nurture our love life and we can grow apart.  Make sure you go on dates regularly and schedule trips alone just to re-connect.  I would add from my own experience to be sure to encourage each other every day and don't sweat the small things.  The big ones are "sweaty enough!"

So I want to say to the love of my life:  Thank you sweetheart for being just what I have needed all these years.  Thanks for loving me for who I am and putting up with me in spite of that person I am!  You are among the greatest blessings I have ever been given and I love you with all my heart!

Jesus said these words regarding marriage in Matthew 19:
4"Haven't you read," he replied, "that at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,'[a] 5and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'[b]? 6So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.