Friday, February 25, 2011

Flashback Friday: The Pacific Northwest

This week, Jon and I purchased plan tickets to my sister, Vivian's wedding. She lives in Washington state and is getting married in May. My flashback today is simply going to take me home.

I'm not sure if you know this, but Texas is not my home. Jon and I currently live there, but we am not from Texas. Jon is from Colorado and China. I am from the Pacific Northwest!! I have a deep love for the Northwest and miss it very much. It has been almost two years since I my last visit.

I enjoy the rain.
I could shop at Powell's Books all day long.
I am a sweatshirt wearing flip-flop kind of girl.
I like hiking in the mountains.
I like swimming at the lake.
Two words Fred Meyer.
I like visiting the beach.
I miss Portland, OR and its weird self. That includes the PDX airport carpet!
Tillamook...enough said.
I have a membership to REI.
I own multiple Nalgene bottles and a Timbuk2 bag.
I long to see my family, most of whom live in the Northwest.
I am so excited to go home!!

Here are some pictures from my last visit home in July 2009.
This is me in front of Powell's Books, it is an entire city block of books!

The last time I was home we went swimming here. In high school I was always swimming or hiking. I just love being outside in God's beautiful creation.

Swimming with my Mom and sisters!

Bobbi, Amanda, Michelle, Vivian, me, and my Mom!

Hanging out in Portland, OR with Amanda and Michelle!

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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Longing to be like Mary


"“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”" Luke 10:41-42

I am a Martha, longing to be a Mary.

This weekend our church is hosting it's annual woman's conference, Feminar. It is a very busy weekend for me. This is the biggest event our church sponsors and it draws in over 2,000 women. I am on the conference committee and have several things that I am responsible for this weekend.

It is a joy to serve on this committee and help plan and host this conference. What I was not anticipating was that I would be sick last week! There are a lot of details that I needed to get done last week that have been put off until the last minute, because I was not feeling good. I have been so stressed this week. I haven't even been looking forward to the conference, because I have been so concerned with getting my "stuff" done.

The Martha side of me has come out in full force. My To-Do List has become my priority over praying for this event and that God would touch the lives of every woman that attends. I have been so distracted by what I need to get done, that I have forgotten that this weekend is really about the Lord!

God always uses conferences and retreats to speak to my heart in a special way. I am expecting God to speak to me this weekend. However, I will miss what He wants me to hear if my mind is filled with a running list of everything I "need" to get done. Satan is cunning and quick to distract me from what God has to say to me.

Starting right now, I am going to make a change. No longer will I be a Martha, longing to be a Mary. I am praying that for this weekend, God let's me be that Mary I want to be.

I have begun to pray (which is what I should have been doing in the first place). First confessing my sin and Martha ways to the Lord and giving up my plans. I am praying that God will help to give me the time to get everything done and that whatever does not get done will be okay. I am praying for the speakers and musical guests, that God would be preparing their hearts as they lead us into His presence. I am also praying for each woman that comes to the conference and that they will be able to lay aside their Martha ways to be a little bit more like Mary for a weekend. I am praying that God would prepare my heart to receive what He wants to teach me this weekend.

Do you need to lay down your Martha ways? If so, do it today! Don't wait! Jesus is longing for us to come, sit comfortably at His feet, and take our concerns right to Him!

Please pray for this conference this weekend and that each woman would be able to leave her troubles at the door and truly embrace their Lord Jesus.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Jon's Baptism

Jon was baptized on Sunday, February 13th, 2011 at Macedonia Baptist Church!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Three Weddings and a Baby

I have to admit that I was not looking forward to 2011 very much. I mean 2010 was just such an incredible year that I wish it could just stay 2010. However, life does not work like that and I can do nothing to stop time in it's tracks.

To my surprise God has blessed our family with an incredible 2011. How so, you ask? Well, three out of our four sisters are getting married this year!! Both of my sisters and one of Jon's sisters. On top of that my sister Bobbi is expecting her first child in April. We are overwhelmed with the blessings and additions that God is adding to our family.

Like I said there is going to be a lot going on this year. Please pray for Jon and I, that God would provide for us financially, so that we can attend each of our sister's weddings.

In chronological order let's go down the line, so that I can share with you what we have to look forward to in 2011!!

Lucas James, son of Brayden and Bobbi

Due Date: April 21st, 2011

First on the list is little baby Lucas! He is scheduled to make his debut into the world on April 21st, that is only 8 weeks 2 days away. My sister, Bobbi has had a good pregnancy. She was tested for gestational diabetes, however the tests came back just fine.

Please pray for Bobbi, that everything will go well with her delivery as she prepares to meet her son.

. . . . . . . . . .

Daniel and Vivian
Wedding Date: May 22nd, 2011

Daniel and Vivian are parents to my beautiful nephew, Kenneth Thomas (pictures below). Vivian is my youngest sister. Daniel proposed to Vivian on Valentine's Day 2010. They are getting married in May 2011, the day before Jon's birthday. I am so excited to be a bridesmaid in her wedding! I cannot wait to be able to celebrate this big occasion with them!

Please pray for Vivian as she has a lot of wedding details to finalize.

. . . . . . . . . .

Aric and Rachel
Wedding Date: July 17th, 2011

Rachel is Jon's sister. Aric proposed to Rachel on December 17th, 2010 (our anniversary). We were so excited to met Aric and spend time with him while we were in China for Christmas. Aric and Rachel are getting married in China and having several receptions in the States after their Honeymoon. We are so excited to welcome Aric to the family.

Please pray for them, that God would provide for them financially as they prepare for the wedding and to move back to Colorado.

. . . . . . . . . .

Brayden and Bobbi
Wedding Date: Tentatively, October 2011

Bobbi is my middle sister. Brayden proposed to Bobbi on Valentine's day 2011. They are going to soon be the parents of Lucas James. They are planning on getting married in October 2011. We look forward to meeting Brayden at Vivian's wedding in May.

Please pray for them and that God would provide them, especially a job for Brayden.

. . . . . . . . . .

Kenneth Thomas, son of Daniel and Vivian

Just for fun here are some recent pictures of Daniel and Vivian's baby Kenneth. He is already 5 months old! I just love him and cannot wait to meet him in May!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Our "Choose Your Own Adventure" Date

Becky, me, and Elise

Yesterday, my friends Elise, Becky and I pulled off an awesome Choose Your Own Adventure date for our husbands!! Elise found The Dating Divas website and we were inspired by their version of the Choose Your Own Adventure Date. We decided to take the idea and run with it!

For weeks we have been planning this date for our husbands. We made invitations and clues. For each clue we wrote a poem so that the guys would have to try and figure out what their choices were. We told the guys we were working out or hanging out when really we were making plans. We sent emails to each other. We even slowly set aside money for this date, so that our husbands would not notice.

Each lady decided when and how to give her husband the invitation. Becky made the invitation and it turned out looking just like the book covers I remember.

I was so excited about the date, that I gave Jon his invite before we went to the Third Day concert on Saturday night.

The invitation told the guys that their adventure would begin right after church on Sunday. John M. and my Jon were very nervous as they waited for Michael and Becky to show up.

Couple #1: John and Elise

Couple #2: Michael and Becky

Couple #3: Jon and Jen

After Michael and Becky arrived the choices began! They first, of many choices they guys would have to make, was about where we would eat lunch. The two categories to choose from were "Cheap & Easy" or "Wine & Dine"

Michael's choice was Cheap & Easy, however we kindly talked him into Wine & Dine like the other guys.

These were our Wine & Dine poem clues. They had to pick which poem they liked the best and that would be the restaurant that we would go to for lunch.

The next choice the guys had to make was which car task they wanted to do. They had a choice between "Rowdy" and "Wacky". They chose Wacky. Michael's task was to drive to Pasado's by only making right turns. My Jon had to stare at people in other cars as we drove to our destination.

And John M. had to serenade the senoritas! He was hilarious!

It took a little while, but we finally made it to the restaurant!

While we were eating we had more tasks for the guys! Michael had to talk to the waitress about Hannah Montana ten times. John M. had to go and ask a table if they needed anything. My Jon had to say at the top of his lungs that "This is the best day of my life!".

This is John M. before he left our table to go and ask another table if they needed anything. It turns out that they needed a napkin and he actually got one for them.

My Jon was not happy about shouting at the top of his lungs, so instead he tried to embarrass me.

It only worked for a little while.

I just love this man!

The next choice the guys had to make was concerning our afternoon activity. They could either be "Safe at Home" or "Out & About". They chose Out & About! Originally they chose bowling, but Becky and I forgot our socks! So we went putt putt golfing instead.

On the way to putt putt golf, we made the guys complete the Rowdy car tasks. This was even more fun then the Wacky tasks.

Michael was supposed to race someone and he chose this woman. She thought it was so funny and kindly waved, but did not want to race him.

Then we did a Chinese Fire Drill! I have never done one of those before in my entire life. After the fire drill we had a dance party with the windows down! There is an awesome video from this that I don't have that is priceless.

We had lots of fun at putt putt golf!

It turned out to be a great day for it too!

Everyone had fun.

Michael was the best out of all of us.

Our scorecard. What was funny is that we won by couples! Michael & Becky got 1st and 2nd. John & Elise got 3rd and 4th. Jon & I got 5th and 6th. That's really weird how it worked out that way.

The guys were great sports!! We are so thankful to have such wonderful husbands!! They had a blast and they were asking us when we get to do this again.

We three ladies we so happy that the guys enjoyed our date!! We look forward to doing this again!!

I know there were a lot of pictures, but I wanted you to be able to see just how much fun we had!!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Flashback Friday: Sunday Flying

Last Sunday, February 13th, after church Jon had to go and practice some maneuvers in the new plane his is flying. He got permission for me to tag a long! It was so much fun, because I really love being able to fly with Jon. Also, I had never been up in the small twin engine before so this was all new for me.

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