Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Terrific Day

Today was one of those really great days!

We got up this morning, and I took James to the orthodontist, which was uneventful, but I had a few minutes of time with James, which is always nice.

I went home to get Sarah and take her to the foot doctor, where we were hoping she would get her cast removed, but I was fearful that it would not happen and we would end up at the beach on vacation next week with a daughter in a cast . . . that would really stink. But we were excited to find out that her foot was mostly healed, enough to remove the cast. It was such an exciting moment. I wish I could have caught her on video. She was giddy with excitement, squealing, "I'm healed, Mom. I'm healed!" Super sweet.

Brent met us at the doctor, but then he headed off to lunch and I took Sarah to find a pair of sandals that had a little more support than flip flops!! And we stopped for lunch together.

I went into work late, not until about 12, and Brent picked Sarah up from me. I had a couple great visits with foster children and a good visit with a couple foster families.

Brent took Sarah home and in the mail was our camera. It has been in Florida since April. We left it there, and it has been one LONG process getting it back. We were so glad to get it back before our vacation. Brent scrubbed Sarah's not so fresh leg and she got a nap. After that she and David went to spend the night with some friends and Brent and James and Jason met me at a barbecue for the former foster youth that we work with a Covenant. It was fun to hang out with these young adults and with my coworkers. None of the participants I work with actually were there, but I am excited to say five of them were missing because of work. I can't tell you how exciting it is that they are all working!! Of the other three, one has a job but that is not why she wasn't there tonight. I was thrilled to realize that of the 8 young ladies I work with, all but two have jobs!!!

After the barbecue, Brent and I took James and Jason to Dewar's for some ice cream. We so rarely have time with just the older two boys, and it was great to sit with them and not have little ones around interrupting. When we got home, Jason and I went out for a run. He actually rode the scooter while I ran, and though I was huffing and puffing, I still enjoyed his company. He talked and I answered with very quick answers because that's all I could get out, but I enjoyed listening to him or just being silent with him. It was precious time.

It's the simple things, nothing particularly special happened today, but it was just all in all a great day!!! I had a little bit of alone time with all my kids, except David. I can't say that too often. And I had alone time with David Saturday and again Tuesday. And as I wind down this week, I am eagerly anticipating a fun Community Group Sunday morning with Pancakes and people we love, followed by a vacation with even more people we love. I can't wait for our week away with the Casselberry's. What fun it will be!

All I can say is Thank You God for the simple blessing of a great day!!! It was truly wonderful!!!

Sunday, July 18, 2010


We've been blessed this summer with quite a few visitors, which has been nice since we didn't get to go back to Oklahoma this year. That's been hard, so we really appreciate the little blessings of God sending people our way!!!

At the end of May, my dad came to visit for a week. He got to hang out with all of us and go down to San Diego and surprise his mom with a visit as well. He spent a lot of time with the kids, taking them on bike rides and even taking the older two up to the Sequoias . . . they LOVED it!!! He looked a little for a job . . . it would be exciting if anything came to fruition. We are praying and waiting on God in that area.

Just after he left, Ann and Wes Rumph came. Wes is now in Santa Monica doing on internship. Our intention is to see him periodically, but with all our June medical emergencies, we haven't seen him since they were here on Father's Day. It has great to have time with them. Ann is such a great friend!!! She is one of my closest friends and mentors and we were in small group together for years and years. It was partially the challenges given by her husband that led Brent down the path of ministry. We enjoyed having Ann over for dinner. They were able to visit church and then we had lunch before they returned to Santa Monica.

Joel and Krista were here this last week. They are friends from Oklahoma . . . we were in small group together. Now they live in Costa Rica and are missionaries. They are a fabulous couple, and we just love them. They were such an encouragement to us in the 24 hours we had to spend with them, and hopefully we were a bit of an encouragement to them. We had a nice dinner at home last night. Then took them on a tour of Bakersfield . . . proving to them that Bakersfield is not as bad as everyone makes it out to be. I think Joel especially liked seeing the Kern River. They were able to join us for church this morning and jumped right in helping set up and tear down. Then we came home for leftovers. The older boys remember them well and were so excited to have them here. David remembered them once he saw them. I don't think Sarah could remember them, but she LOVED them . . . I'm afraid almost to death, or at least the point of being overwhelmed!!! Hopefully they will come back again!!! :)

Next week, a third family from Oklahoma will be meeting us at the coast for a week. Caroline and her husband, David, were also in our small group for years and years . . . and she is an adopted grandmother to my children. David was an amazing man. He died from a brain tumor in 2001. She has four grown children. Three of the four will be coming with her for the visit. It will be a tremendous week, and I should have lots to post about it afterward. I can't wait for the time with them.

The day after they leave, our friends the Fishers will arrive in LA. We will get to see Dalene and her mother, Esther, I'm sure, but the main thing we will be doing is picking up Steve and Dalene's oldest son, Spencer, who is James's best longest friend and bringing him up here with us for a while. I so look forward to the time the boys will have together. I wish all of the family could be up here with us, but they have some stuff going on down south, and Brent and I did get quality time with Steve and Dalene back in November. James is so, so excited!!! We've talked about doing this every summer but it just hasn't worked out.

Basically as soon as Spencer leaves, my mother will arrive. She will be here for about a week to hang out and so stay with the younger kids when we take James down for his second cleft lip surgery. I'm glad she will get to be here to see us and to be with the kids. She hasn't been here since we launched Kaleo; I am excited for her to meet our friends and to hear Brent teach.

As I type this, I realize even more that we had something incredible in our small group in Oklahoma. In 2010 alone, we have had the opportunity to see at least 2 members of four different families from that small group. We had such impacting (them impacting us) relationships with everyone in the group. It was such a diverse group . . . singles, couples, families with young children, families with older children, families with an empty next . . . we learned so much from each other, and though we had a lot of differences, we formed amazing bonds . . . friendships that will last our lifetime, I'm sure. It's very cool!!!

I hope the relationships we are building in our small group now will become the same. I love all these people as well, and while it's probably not as diverse, we have a lot of differences in other ways and still have a LOT to learn from each other. I'm glad God made us to be in relationships!!!

By the way, we LOVE visitors . . . come see us anytime!!!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Less Spiritual Thoughts While Running

So, sometimes when I run, I think about very little, other than getting it over with. Here are some of the thoughts I had tonight when I was out running in the upper 90 degree weather (with slight humidity, though nothing my friends in Oklahoma or other parts of the country are experiencing).

1. Definitely run after the sun is setting or before it has fully risen, when the temperature is at least 15 degrees cooler.

2. Definitely run after dinner has had plenty of time to settle or before I eat breakfast.

3. Run far away from home because the first part of the run is easy, and when it gets hard, I am motivated to get home. Not good if I am just two blocks away.

4. I hate to fail, but even more I hate to fail in front of people; thus, run with someone!!! Even my children keep me going, not because they encourage me necessarily but because no way do I want them to see me quit!!!!

Shallow, I know, but true!!! I need to get in the shower!!!!!