Sunday, October 30, 2005

What is love anyways?

God has been speaking to me a lot about love and marriage in general lately. Here is something from scripture that I read a couple of nights ago: This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for [each other]. 1 John 3:16 The commentary regarding this scripture in my Bible says that: Real love is an action, not merely a feeling. It produces selfless, sacrificial giving. The greatest act of love is giving oneself for others. How can we lay down our lives? By serving others (e.g., our spouses) with no thought of receiving anything in return. Sometimes it’s easier to say we’ll die for others than to truly live for them—this involves putting others’ desires first. Pretty profound stuff, huh? I know that for me, it’s really difficult to want to do things that won’t benefit myself and put Rob’s (or even my kids’) desires before myself. We’re selfish, willful beings. Without God’s help, we can only love with a selfish love—a love that cannot be given if it is not received and returned—a conditional love. Only with him can we have agape love and love others regardless of the response that is received. Wow! Now, I need to sit down and apply this to my marriage and to my own life. What steps can I take to love others (especially Rob) with God’s kind of love—a love without conditions? To love them the way they are supposed to be loved. It seems so impossible, but then again, Paul writes in Philippians that “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Things are better.

Well...yesterday started out a bit rough, but the day ended on a positive note. Dad called me early yesterday afternoon, and we were able to talk a lot, and I just felt really reassured, loved and felt so much better by the time our conversation ended. The confusion, hurt, frustration, etc. have been melting away.

Last night I had my MOPS spa night. I had my nails painted, did the Mary Kay Satin Hands treatment, had a 10-minute massage that was very much needed, ate desserts (and carrots and tomatoes too). I even won a door prize last night of a $10 gift certificate for Mary Kay merchandise. It was awesome. I really like the group of women in my group. Look forward to getting to know them more.

Monday, October 24, 2005


I guess that is the best word to describe my state of emotion right now. I was happy and excited about an upcoming trip to Eugene. The prospect of catching up with friends. Visiting family. Soaking up in what was familiar. Now, we may not fly back at all. The primary purpose for our trip was to be there for my dad's upcoming wedding. Something that I was happy about earlier is now something that is, at this moment in time, a source of frustration and hurt for me. Okay, I'm happy that Dad's happy, but...(big sigh)...

Okay, I can respect the fact that weddings are special events. You can invite whomever you choose. They can be big extravaganzas. They can be small, private affairs. They can happen in a church. They can happen on the beach. They can happen while jumping out of an airplane. They can happen anywhere. But, if you're going to tell someone (especially your daughter) that you would love to have that person there, then change the date and say, well, we really would rather have a private ceremony, and you're not welcome...ugh. It's irritating.

I guess that the best way I can describe how I'm feeling right now is kind of like how I felt after a boy broke up with me. A little dejected. Hurt. Frustrated. Confused. Not quite the massive heartache that comes with a break-up, just a little tinge, but it's there none-the-less.

Ugh...I'm so mad right now. Sad. Frustrated. I would have at least liked to have been able to meet the person who is going to be my step-mother before she took that title. I feel like her kids get more consideration than Dustin and I do. Heck, we're having 3 new people added to our family that we know virtually nothing about. One of them happens to be a girl. I'm going to have a little sister. I don't know how I really like that part. Maybe I'm being selfish right now, but I am my daddy's little girl. Is she going to usurp my *throne*? Is she going to take my place in my daddy's heart and life? I may be twenty-six, but that doesn't mean that my need for him decreases. Truthfully, I desire to have a really close relationship with him. To have barriers that had been put up throughout my childhood broken down, the boundaries that had been drawn be redefined. To be able to discuss, openly and freely whatever is going on in our lives--no matter what the subject. Not to be walking in fear, or avoiding whatever the topic may be, but to embrace it and step out into uncharted waters.

Besides, how is this new family going to meld into the one whose framework already exists? I want my parents to still be able to openly communicate. I want them to still be friends. It doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing thing. Heck, to bring a very popular saying to light: What would Jesus do?

Okay, I guess now that I've gotten a few things off my chest, I am now ready to go to sleep...maybe.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Don't you just love...

thunder and lightning storms? I'm sitting upstairs in our room looking out the window at the spectacular "light show" we are getting this evening. I was sitting downstairs when I caught a flash out of the corner of my eye, so I let Sydney come inside. It's been coming pretty consistently since then.

I love the flash of the lights against the dark sky. The low rumble of the thunder following shortly thereafter. It makes me thankful for having a roof over my head. Four walls surrounding and protecting us. A Heavenly Father who has allowed me to witness this act of nature. So awesome. Oops...sounds like the thunder is closer now. I should probably turn off my computer before a potential electrical surge. :)

On the mend.

Feeling much better today than I have all week. Think that the antibiotics are doing their job! Only thing is that I am finding that I am still pretty wiped out by mid-day. My tonsils have shrunk in size and it does not hurt to swallow anymore, so I guess that I should just look at those positives! :)

I am so thankful that the guys are all doing so well. Rob seems to rarely if ever get knocked down by anything. Aidan has been a bit cranky due to his teething, I am guessing. He has been cutting 8 since Labor Day and they haven't completely worked themselves all the way above the surface. He is still pretty good natured though. David is his exuberant self. Bouncing off walls, furniture and the like. :)

Last night I had such a fabulous time with four other women from my MOPS discussion group. We met up at Daily Grind off Prices Fork Rd. here in Blacksburg for coffee and fellowship. It was neat getting to know each person who came a little bit more. They are all such amazing, wonderful women. God has truly blessed me with people that I am coming into contact with here.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

This Crazy Little Thing Called Life... here has been a bit crazy this week. I stayed home with David Sunday morning because he was still running a slight fever. Monday morning I woke up with a bit of a sore throat--didn't really think too much about it at first. My friend, Julie, came by and we made cookies for MOPS while the kids played and watched Elmo or VeggieTales videos. By Monday afternoon, I was really feeling pretty yucky. Rob ended up coming home early and I went straight to bed after eating a dinner of chicken broth and saltine crackers--yum. After about 12+ hours of sleep, I was up and running Tuesday morning. Thought I'd try to get the rest of my baking for MOPS done since I wasn't able to get it done Monday. My muffins ended up tasting really good, but the mini muffins I wanted to take for breakfast looked pretty bad being mutilated and all (didn't have any mini-muffin cup liners--oops!). So, we left the house a bit early and stopped by Kroger to get some to take with me, since I couldn't show up empty-handed. :) After MOPS, all I wanted to do was go home and go to bed, which, of course, I wasn't able to do. I scheduled an appointment with Dr. Jeremy Freeman, the husband of one of the MOPS co-coordinators at Blacksburg Baptist Church and rested assured that after Wednesday, I'd finally know what was wrong with me and I'd get something to help me feel better.

Today, my appointment went great. I think that the boys and I have a doctor for the duration we are in Blacksburg. Come to find out, I have some sort of tonsilitis. Truthfully, I feel SOOOOOO much better today than I did yesterday afternoon, so that is good. I'm on antibiotics now, and hopefully we'll beat this crud quickly.

My dear friend, Julie, was so kind to lend me the use of her sewing machine yesterday after MOPS so I could sew the patches on David's vest for Cubbies (see the above picture--I'm really proud of this accomplishment!). Well, being the remedial seamstress that I am (the lack of confidence in myself in this area stems from my mom continually calling me the remedial's kind of stuck since high school), I had to call my mom because I couldn't figure out why in the world the thread from the top spool kept getting wrapped up and getting stuck in the bobbin. Thankfully she talked me through what I should do, and then the machine started working out great! I finished ripping out all the stitches I had done by hand on the patches and proceeded to sew them onto David's vest with the sewing machine. I was kind of bummed that I was done after sewing the 5 numbers across the bottom left side of the vest and the Jumper Trail patch just below the AWANA Cubbies one on the left side by his heart. Thankfully, he earned his Lamb Walk 1 patch tonight, so I had another one to sew on for him (and he will have earned his Elephant Walk 1 patch next week after he tells Miss Tammy or Miss Nancy the next verse). This boy LOVES his vest and would wear it all day, every day if I'd let him.

Tonight was career night at Awana, so that is why he's wearing the fireman's hat. He also wore his firefighter raincoat that he wore for his Halloween costume last year. Definitely one adorable firefighter I have. :) David had a blast at Cubbies, like usual and came home with a glowing report and is anxious to get to go again next week. At least we have our bear hug lesson to work on this week, so it's something that can help tide him over until then.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

How cool is...

having Rob tell me this evening about Pastor Nick praying for people in our congregation (and those home too) to get well from whatever sicknesses they might have and right after the time Nick prayed, David was back to his normal self. I think it's awesome! I serve an amazing God! Miracles of healing still happen today--they didn't just happen in the Bible. God is the same yesterday, today and forever!

David and I stayed home from church this morning because he had been running a slight fever last night and still wasn't quite himself when he woke up this morning. You know when that boy isn't feeling well when he's ultra cuddly. He gives cuddles here and there, but he's normally high energy and is bouncing (or balancing, or jumping) on the furniture and off the walls. Plus, he took a nap yesterday that didn't mess up his internal clock. Guess that should have been my first clue. :)

He's been really into Disney's new show, Little Einsteins. He likes to pretend that he is Leo, Rob is Quincy, I'm June and Aidan is Annie (although I keep trying to get him to change it to such luck yet). When we're not the Little Einsteins (or the Little Whitesteins as he first use to call them), we are other cartoon characters. It's kind of fun, but you never know who he is going to be when. Aidan likes the music that is on the show, although he doesn't seem to be as enthralled with this one as he is with VeggieTales. :) Aidan knows when a song is about to start on the different VeggieTales movies and will put down whatever he is looking at/playing with and go closer to the TV to dance. It's really fun to watch. :)

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Costco, Krispy Kreme and football (and some other stuff too)

This weekend has been pretty good so far. Yesterday we drove down to Winston-Salem, North Carolina for a trip to Costco. Winston-Salem is about 130 or so miles away from Blacksburg, and is freeway driving all the way there. It was so pretty driving through the mountains and through the different valleys--definitely got warmer once we were in North Carolina though, by at least 8-10 degrees. We went to the mall to walk around a bit (and I got some new clothing items) before heading to Costco since we got there before it opened. Yeah, I had definitely been having some Costco withdrawls. :) Didn't realize how much I missed having one not far from my house to pick up whatever, whenever. This will be good discipline, right? :) Got LOTS of stuff this time though and found a really yummy marinade/dressing to boot that is manufactured in Redmond, Washington.

Oh, before we left for home, we had to stop by Krispy Kreme. Yum. They have pumpkin spice cake donuts rught now that are heavenly. Rob wanted the regular melt-in-your-mouth kind of donuts, and I got a chocolate donut and a pumpkin spice donut (ate the pumpkin one and saved the chocolate for later). Krispy Kreme was actually founded in Winston-Salem. Genius those creators were.

After we got home, we were scurrying to get the house cleaned before Rob's poker night began. Yeah, that worked really well with 2 busy little boys running under-foot. :) I told Rob that trying to clean with those two is often times like trying to shovel your sidewalk in the midst of a blizzard. I put away, they taketh out. Gotta love them though! We did manage to get things clean enough to be presentable, so that was good (although with everyone but me playing cards, I don't think that anyone else noticed what the house looked like). Rob lost this time. Last time he raked in the chips, but apparently the cards weren't going his way last night.

Today we ran errands and then got to play at Barnes and Noble for awhile. The boys loved playing on the 100-acre wood stage where they do storytime, and at the train table. There are so many trains and cars out to get to play with, it makes it really nice when there are other kids around. Neither boy really wanted to leave (David even had a little friend to look at books and play with today--his name was Sam and he was 4 years old). But we came home, they had naps, Rob studied, and I got to talk to my dad. It was nice getting to hear his voice and being able to communicate that way instead of just by e-mail. This afternoon we watched football. Too bad Notre Dame couldn't pull it off. At least Oregon beat UW--that was a good point, for me at least. We watched part of the NASCAR race too. Man, lots of blown tires tonight. Craziness.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Keeping With Tradition.

This afternoon warranted a drive out to Sinkland Farms in Riner to go visit the pumpkin patch. We are so glad that we were told about this place since we have had a yearly tradition of going out to the pumpkin patch to get our pumpkins. This place was great. There were pumpkins up by the check-out area for those individuals who don't want to make the trip out to the pumpkin patch itself, or you could drive out to the big pumpkin patch (since we went on a week day we had to drive out--had we gone on the weekend, the tractor and wagon would have driven us out there). Pumpkins everywhere! The boys had so much fun running from pumpkin to pumpkin. David went out into the field quite a ways. Aidan was more content to stay up at the top of the hill and play with the pumpkins and vines there. Rob and I had a blast watching them explore and try to find the "perfect" pumpkins. To end the outing, we had a bite of ice cream, then were homebound.

Have you ever...

thought that you were going completely insane due to the fact that you cannot find something? That would describe me currently. What is it with me and misplacing stuff? I'm infamous for losing my keys right before I am supposed to leave for somewhere (that, or finding out that they were locked in the car--thank goodness for Onstar! That service has been a lifesaver on more than one occasion.). Thankfully after praying for help in finding them, God has directed me and has helped me see where they were. Well...I guess that finding Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory in the Netflix envelope is going to require more prayer to have him help direct me to where that silly red envelope is that has been causing me so much headache this week. I had it all ready to send back (right after the mail was already picked up, go figure), thought I set it somewhere where I would remember to grab it to put in the mailbox the next day, but am completely clueless as to where that spot was.

Better get back to praying... :) just had to vent a bit.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

My boys.

Aidan and David. Brothers. My sons. Precious gifts from the Lord. Each as unique as a fingerprint. Growing daily. Keeping us on our toes. Full of love. Full of life. Sweet. Adorable. Beautiful. Precious. Rowdy. Busy. Laughter.

Just a few words to describe these two. It's not often that I am able to get a picture of them together. Semi-posed even. :) I feel so blessed to have them in my life--yes, even during the challenging times. They both teach me so much about life, about myself, about the world around little men.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005


I love the fall. The leaves beginning to change color. The crispness of the air. There is nothing quite like it. It's a season of transition. Not only in nature--vegetation and animal life preparing for the upcoming chill that winter brings, but it's also a season of transition within our lives.

~Our family is in a transition now that Rob is back in school. We are constantly adjusting. Schedules evolving. Trying to adapt to our new way of life. Trying to be a support and a help to him. Excited at the kindling of passion within him as he is pursuing different research interests (although some of what he tells me goes over my head). :)

~I'm in a season of transition in my walk with the Lord. Constantly yearning for a deeper intimacy with my creator. Seeking. Asking. Longing. Trying to see his will for my life and what direction he wants me to go. Being reminded of who I am in Christ. Excited for where He is bringing me.

~Living in a new and exciting place. Driving out of town just a few minutes and being out in the middle of nowhere. Immersed in the beauty of God's creation. I had to take a few pictures while we were on a walk/mini-hike at Pandapas Pond Sunday afternoon. The leaves are starting to change colors--splashes of yellow, gold and crimson flashing amongst the green. It's quite breathtaking! In a couple more weeks, the hillsides will be awash in color--I can hardly wait!