Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Proposal! :)

The above picture says it all. :) Now, for the details (which Jeff didn't go into).

The children and I arrived in Searcy this last Thursday evening and got to grab something to eat with Jeff before he had a meeting to go to at 7.

Friday, Jeff told me that SOMETHING was going to happen this weekend but wouldn't say what (even though we went to several places that had wedding rings). The places that we went to all said the same thing... No size 4's and "we'd have to ship it out and get it sized and send it back to you". Friday afternoon, got the kids down for a nap and Jeff said he had some errands to run.

So, my thought was, Ok... So much for THAT idea and just focused on enjoying our time together (even though I was a bit bummed)... Ha! Went to a friend's wedding Saturday afternoon (which R was elated because there were TWO cakes! and J did really good in not making a mess - so proud of them). Had just enough time to go back to the motel, get the kids changed, me changed and then head to Highway Church of Christ to go to their VBS kickoff (complete with cookout, games, and First Day singing - Jeff sings with these guys). Got to see some ol' friends from CRC (Crowley's Ridge Jr. College) days. Devin Swindle (who now preaches at Highway) and Tracy Davis Miesner (and Adrian and kiddo's).

Got to the rest of the guys (and still trying to figure out where I know the sound guy from). I had met the main lead (Matt) and his wife (Carolyn - is also 7 months preggers and also a cohort in Jeff's scheme for the evening) the last time that we went up to Searcy. She had asked me to sit with her and that she had to sit kinda close so that she could do some stuff for the group and take pictures. I learned later from Jeff that her "main job" was to get me up closer to the stage and in the isle so that way Jeff wouldn't have to go over people to get to me. Also, I knew this concert was special because it was a tribute to Devin (who started the group to begin with). So, thank you Devin for giving up a bit of your spotlight with us! (He and Carolyn were the only ones in the group that knew what was going on).

The group sang a few songs and I was busy grinning at Jeff and trying to keep J from going up on stage to be with Jeff (J was content to either be "singing" along with the group *using a pencil as a mic* or using two pencils as a drumming sticks and keeping up with the guys).

The surprise came when the guys were introducing themselves. Jeff was the last one (I learned later he did this on purpose) and he got off the stage and was walking to where the children and I were sitting. First thought was... "Uh Oh!" "Oh boy!" Oh Dear!". First he introduced who I was and then promptly got down on one knee and proposed. Needless to say, I was ecstatic! Somehow, I manged to get an "I love you" and a "Yes!" out and thankfully Matt heard it through the mic (thanks to those little ear pieces that let the guys hear each other sing) and he kinda hollered "She said yes!" Jeff started to put the ring on my left hand but ended up putting on my right (and it almost didn't go on!) but, switched it later (once I realized the oppsss). The guys went back to singing and got Devin up to sing some "final" songs as well. Brought back some good memories of hearing him, Travis Eades, Jason Elms, and Rusty McMillion.

As for the kids, J is pretty much clueless. He just wants to be around Jeff as soon as he walks into the room! Case in point: Jeff goes to the Jail and helps/does the services for the inmates on Sunday night (which makes it pretty late when he gets out). I had just gotten the kids down (or tried to) when Jeff came up to say good-night to me and the kids. Jeff went over to J in his pack-n-play to give him a hug and kiss good-night and then went over to do the same for R. Well, J would have none of that. He climbed out of his pack-n-play and ran over to Jeff demanding more attention than just a hug and kiss good night. R is the same way. She got as close as she could and telling Jeff (don't kiss me! Don't kiss me!) all while showing her cheek and staying as close as she could to Jeff.

Jeff told me later that he knew he wanted to propose either at the concert or in Bible Class Sunday morning..... I'm glad he did it at the concert! :)

More to follow!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Small Words

Over the past several months, J has expounded in his vocabulary. Today was the beginning of the words "I want".

All of us start out needing the basics... food, water, love, protection, etc. The question is, when are we no longer satisfied with just the basics? When do we go from "I need" to "I want"? Granted, some children don't even receive these basic's (and I know that just from experience and seeing first hand growing up) which shouldn't even be an issue but continues to be one in this country (as well as the rest of the world. But, when we get start getting it in our heads that we are entitled to something?

I remember J (and R as well) being perfectly content with just the basic's. Do we teach our children (and others) that we are entitled to things and so should they? There is a song in the musical "South Pacific" that caused quite a stir up when it was released called, "You have to be carefully taught". That song hit me when J started the "I want" phase. Granted, I'm thankful that he's able to verbalize something that he wants to do (ie: swing in this instance) so now the challenge comes of teaching him the difference between "I would like... This" and "I need... This" and then being thankful for the things received.

How many times are we guilty of not being thankful to God for the blessing that He gives us? All our "I want's"?? All our "I need's"??

Thoughts, comments, suggestions???

More to follow.....

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Passing the baton

This last weekend was a bit of an emotional roller coaster for me. While it was wonderful to have Jeff back in town, it was also a bit tough.

Friday, in and of itself was great just to kinda relax. R even got to help make (from scratch) some chocolate icing for a chocolate bunt cake that we made (also from scratch) on Saturday.

Saturday was the challenge. I had known for quite a while that I wanted to show Jeff where Donovan was buried. Initially, I had wanted to take him and it just be the two of us but that's kinda hard to do when I have the children 24/7.

I had asked R if she wanted to go and see where Daddy was buried and if it would be ok for Jeff to see (which she agreed to). We took the kids to a splash park and they had a blast. On the way back, I asked R again if it would be ok to go and see where Donovan was buried and this time she said no. I asked her if it would be ok for Jeff and I to go and she could stay in the car (running of course) with J. She was ok with that.

Both of the kids had crashed in their seats when we got to the cemetery so we got out and let them sleep with air conditioning. As soon as I stepped onto the grass, the tears came. I was not expecting this! I knew that there would probably be times down the road that I would miss Donovan and I also knew (as Jeff did) that I wasn't looking for someone to "fill" Donovan's shoes (so to speak). In many ways, Jeff has already meant so much to me and the children. We stood by Donovan's grave and it felt like he had died eons ago, rather than in Dec. '08. I also showed Jeff a grave marker that was done about a week or so after Donovan had died. It is a burial plot for a whole family who (I'm guessing) were killed in a car wreck. A mother, father, and two children.... Gone in an instant. Each time that I had gone to Donovan's grave, I would see that marker and be reminded of how blessed and thankful I should be. I lost my husband at a very difficult time but I know where he is now. Another family lost much more and who knows about eternity.

One we got back to the house, I had a lot of heaviness but I also had someone to hold on to and cry with and a God who helps more than (many times) we give Him credit for. After a while, the heaviness left and we were able to make an awesome supper and a nice chocolate bunt cake (which R and a neighbor hood friend got a sugar rush from) so the day ended well.

It was also great just to sit next to Jeff during worship. Sometimes, you forget how good you had it or how much little things mean until you suddenly don't have that anymore. Yes, it's challenge to try and keep a certain 2 yr old from talking (or singing) at the most inopportune moments (which little ones seem to capitalize on) but it's soo important to have someone that prays with you, sings with you and studies God's word with you during worship. Thank you for being the man you are Jeff!

More to follow....

Monday, July 11, 2011

The trip up to Searcy...

This last weekend, the children and I went to Searcy to spend some time with Jeff Henig.

We left on Thursday morning/afternoon and drove about 5 1/2 hours up. I had made a reservation through a discount site and got a good deal on a room only to be very disappointed upon arrival. Much to my amazement, the motel staff had no clue that we were going to be checking in that day. All the rooms were for smoking, and the pool that they had wasn't working.

The pool aspect was a disappointment in that I used that swimming experience in order to get the kids good and tired so that they would both go down for a nap in the afternoons and also just before night-night time (which works great by the way).

In all my "wisdom" I asked Jeff (since he was about to leave his house) if he had a few candles to burn in the room to knock the smell of smoking out (and please, don't get offended about this if you do smoke). The room we were given was in the back of the building (which didn't look like a very safe place to be) and as soon as I walked into the room, I almost gagged. The room reeked of cigarette smoke (imagine someone sitting around and puffing around 9 packs a day kinda smell). Not a very healthy place for a 2 yr old and a 7 yr old to be sleeping in (not to mention a very tired momma).

Thankfully, there was another motel chain right across the street (I hadn't bothered turning the car off and letting the kids out before hand and I'm glad I did) so, I checked to see if they had a room available (all while fighting back tears of tiredness and frustration). While I was in the process of finding out if there was a room available, Jeff came in with a calm (but kinda concerned) look on his face. Talk about a calm in the storm! He was that for me! Managed to get a room and then had to go back to the other place and try to cancel that reservation (which I had to call another office since this particular one didn't have a clue that I even existed) and then unload children and stuff in the nice, neat, clean room. Needless to say, I won't be looking to book at the America's Best Value Inn and Suites ever again! I also learned that the motel that we stayed out often gets customers from the said Inn quite often.... *huge note of sarcasm* I wonder why??

After all that, we managed to just hang out and relax a bit on Friday (and meet some new friends who also happened to have a 4 month old baby girl - R was delighted with this) and then have a cookout on Saturday.

Sunday morning was a TOTALLY different ball game. Jeff was to preach for a small congregation in a town not very far from Bald Knob (and no, I don't know the town... Only that it's among some very winding roads with an occasional gravel road). He said that we had to be on the road by 8am... Sharp! No problem there (wonders of wonders). We actually got there a full hour BEFORE Bible Class was supposed to start so me (in all my "wisdom" once again), suggested we may want to ride around a bit instead of either having two very hot and sweaty children (if they got out) or cranky (for having to sit in a car for an hour). This idea was all well, fine and good.... Until we started heading back to the church building. Long story short, we made a few wrong turns and ended up being about 20 or 30 minutes late for Bible class (which Jeff was teaching). Needless to say, we both learned a few things that morning... One, Jeff is not allowed to trust his own memory on winding *sometimes graveled* roads and two, not to get tooo flustered about being stuck behind "Sunday drivers" on said roads when you are running late. Thankfully, the members didn't seem to mind to much and had a chance to give Jeff a hard time later (all in good humor I might add).

So, even though the weekend started off a bit disappointing and hectic, it ended on a good note (with lots of laughs and lessons along the way). Coulda, woulda, shoulda can't change the present so why get your feathers all in a ruffle (which Jeff didn't by the way)? All any of us can do is make the best of things, apologize when we need too and learn to do better for the next time we have a "coulda" moment.

More to follow....

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

July 4th weekend

Each weekend, especially lately, I look forward to because it also means spending time with Jeff and a chance for the rest of the family to get to know him a little bit better each time.

This last weekend was a memorable one for several different reasons. One was that I learned that he can REALLY cook! He fixed a kinda spaghetti casserole which had your typical (and not so typical) sauce but, instead of spaghetti noodles, we had shells instead.... YUMMY! We also had K and G over to help us eat it all (even though I still had two Tupperware containers full afterwards). We also got a very small (top of the table) grill so R and J REALLY enjoyed being able to "help" with that... Only downside was that we ran out of time in getting to make smores so, this coming weekend, maybe we can *praying that the chocolate doesn't melt on the drive up to Searcy*.

Drove over to the Gaylord Texan for the fireworks display (which was totally worth the drive over) and amazed that J stayed up the whole drive back!

On Tuesday, J decided to ring the holiday out the right way with his own little "confetti" celebration.... Complete with R's glitter (5 bottles to be exact) and a nice kitchen floor to dump it all out on himself and any surface available. Needless to say, I now have a sparkling floor from one end of the house to the other.... Nothing like celebrating the "correct" way.

Hope everyone had a fun and safe 4th!

More to follow.....