Sunday, September 28, 2014

well hello there....

these pix are completely unrelated to the shmooz I have typed below. I just like to add pictures to my posts...sometimes they relate, sometimes they do not....enjoy!


oh my gosh, I was a cute little bucktoothed, bad haired bugaboo....

Jenna, my Dad, Tom on his lap and I. such cuteness.

Oh Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree...

My loving mother and I and my Dad, obviously very tired....

My Grandpa Greenhill and I.

we were so young and cute. I see a re-enactment in our future, huh, Tom??

Grandma/Grandpa Taylor's infamous kitchen....Tom and I with cousins from both sides of the family tree....
Good Sunday evening....finding it hard to believe that this weekend is already over.

I'm seriously just so not ready for another week to begin. just. not. ready.

Let us just hope and pray that these wild n crazy days will just slow down....that I will be able to have some quieter days at home, schooling the kids and just "being".

A few things on the horizon....

October starts this week....can you believe it??? I will have a 20 year old this month. And also a 12 year old...whoa.

On Oct 10, we head to MI (did I mention this already???) for the Switchfoot Fading West tour/concert at Spring Arbor University....for Will's birthday, we went ahead and got good seats (up front) and VIP passes to meet them, go to sound check, autographs and such before the show....we are pretty excited to say the very least! their music has been extremely encouraging to our family.

October also means Harvest Party planning. Another thing that I need to get on the books is a graduation celebration for Will & Ethan....

So many good things on the horizon.

How could a busy girl like me even consider having deep friendships? Is it safe to assume that deep friendships are going to have to be on hold until my life settles a bit? will my life ever truly settle even a bit? I mean, I'm so glad to be living my life...really am. Time to sit and create, just breathe life in and really soak it up....where do deep friendships fit in here?

spontaneity? girls night out?  sitting around a table, drinking coffee, crafting, talking about life, spirituality, Jesus, our kids and really just getting to "be friends"? it remains to be glad for the friendships that I do have and hope that they can grow to deeper levels....praying to this end.

not sure why friendship is so at the forefront of my mind these days....probably cuz I don't have time, don't want time for surfacey friendships....thanks for letting me get a bit of this off of my chest.

hugs and here's to a happy, joy-filled last week of Sept, first week of October kinda week to you!

Friday, September 26, 2014

just a little blog visit

This kid, (Ok man) will be TWENTY in about 20 days. 
Ethan, posing like a cheese ball and Charlie, doing what Charlie does....

beautiful all the way through

my nephew Duncan....growing up way too fast.

Yes, Levi is in his underwear.  I didn't realize this when I uploaded this pic... intimidating!

Molly shows us a chicken butt....chicken butt = cute, chicken feet = not so much
So, I'm just sitting in the classroom/storage room, getting Molly finished up on her school for the week and thought I'd pay a visit to my blog. I actually blogged the other day but blogger was doing some weirrrrrrd things with the pics I had posted so I deleted it.

This week.

ahh, this week.....challenging on so many levels. Some stuff I can talk about, like when Molly dropped a brand new, freshly cooked, freshly seasoned with homemade taco seasoning, 3 lb bowl of ground turkey on. the. floor. That was Wednesday....a day that will go down in infamy in my mothering mind....such a weird, do over kinda day....

some stuff I can't talk about, like the work changes on the horizon and the different, huge, overwhelming situations for David, which always trickles down to us...

Lemme just say, my chest feels like it is going to cave in....

And then I breathe, remind myself Who I belong to and lay it all down at HIS feet, cuz HE CAN handle this, will give us grace to do the same and will use it to fine tune and shape us into vessels fit for His use.

this doesn't even include how much hearing news stories can just put a pit in my stomach these days...I don't even watch TV (if I do, it's Netflix or some weird channel that comes in on our TV because TV is GARBAGE. pure and simple.)  Men trying to convert co-workers to Islam and then getting fired, going back and BEHEADING fellow employees?? REALLLLLLY????


sitting here with my wiggly seven year old and trying not to fear what the future holds for her and thanking GOD that at least one of my kids won't ever have to deal with the pure crap that humans do to each other...gross.

Lord, please keep my children safe.

I can't help but think how blessed I am that I am here with them. It's far from picture perfect, idyllic or paradise-like but it is beautiful. I've been able to be home with them for 20 years this October.

blows me away. The sacrifices that David has made to enable this boggles my mind. the ways in which the Lord has taken care of things like extra money or situations that allow us to be together are just out of this world.

So to you, fellow mommas, home with kids or working a job, I charge you to choose some JOY realize that this phase of life really does pass by in a blink. The days ARE long but the years are short....I get it...I remember those days of sitting, staring almost blankly, overwhelmed, in a McDonald's play land, and having older moms or grandmas casually telling me to savor these years because they'd pass by quickly....and I'd think "yeah, right...I'll be wiping boogers and bums for ever"

and now I do that to young moms. sheesh.

It's not easy. hang in there. the pictures above are proof that this mothering thing is worth it. every little gory, glorious second of this mothering journey is a gift.

when my journey as a mom of babies and small kids ended in 2011, abruptly, I came face to face with a life change. I had figured I'd be doing baby things for a few more years, buying myself some time to really address myself, because, "Hey, I'm a momma to a baby....this is my first priority right now"...

I am no longer a mom to tiny kids. that is so weird to me. In ways, I miss it, but when I get around kids that are small or three? whew...I'm reminded how much work they are and how they can seem to suck the life right out of ya (in a good way..)

these are my wild, deep thoughts for this Friday. Hope your weekend holds amazing outdoor adventures because winter will be here before we know it...Christmas = less than three months away now.

hope this finds you well and enjoying our beautiful Indian summer....chow.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

friendship...jump ship? please don't.

don't mind my cheesy lil pic I grabbed off of Google get the point...friendship really is such a puzzle. Not just to me but to so many.

But since this is my blog, I'll blog about it from my perspective...

I'm in a weird place with isn't as easy as I used to think it was.

I'm a wife and mom first, in that order, so obviously that takes priority...I see so many of my friends and acquaintances doing "friendy" things. I'm not dogging Girls Night out...I love a good coffee talk with a friend, just chilling or having people over to our house. That is supreme. That is life. That is the pineapple of hospitality.

I have an almost 20 year old son. How much more time do I have with him in my house? Maybe a long time, I dunno, but honestly, these kids have grown up so fast, sometimes it takes my breath away....The 18 year old dude isn't far behind and then there's that 16 year old girl who told me a few weeks ago that she'd like to marry at a young go girl! so odd to have teens and younger kids in the same household...but I'm loving it...

A few years ago, nearly two to be exact, when someone that I considered my closest non blood relative walked away from our friendship, with nary a good reason, it got the wheels turning, and they have been turning ever since. I am STILL processing this loss and how to prevent it in the future. Even now, people that I've considered friends don't seem to be my friends. How does a person start weeding out the people? Are we even supposed to do this?? How am I supposed to handle this? I want some deeper friendships. I want to be near people that are seeking the Lord, His will for their lives, far from perfect, not even close and stuff along that vein. Willing to be held accountable, to be real and to honestly love and appreciate. Hard to come by but there are a few of you out there...thank you.

Lots of prayer is the answer. Less is more for me these days...frivolous, shallow friendships are a thing of the past. I've been laying this at the Lord's feet a lot lately and it amazes me the Scriptures He gives in response.

He truly is the friend that sticks closer than a brother. Thank You, Lord Jesus, for being that friend for not just me, but for David, Will, Ethan and Mel. May we teach Levi and Molly this truth. We are clinging to this truth and so many other promises from God's Word as we face some changes in our lives...

In the end, if my kids walk away from our house knowing/living this, we will have been successful parents.

Be a good friend. Be accountable. Get over yourself (these are things I tell myself daily, so I thought I'd tell you too). Love ya!

throw back thursday

Grandpa Greenhill with Tom, Jenna and myself. we were precious.
L to R: Me (Laurie), Aunt Mimi, Aunt Nan, my father. I kinda love this oldie.

there are seriously just no words for this picture. I do know this, I wanna squeeze myself here.

Uncle Frank, Gram Greenhill, My snarky father and my cousin, Jenna. I love these glimpses into my childhood.

I look like I'm trying to squeeze the snot (or something else) out of my Potty Time forward to 2007, potty training Levi...I made this face a lot.

I love the expression on my mom's face here...this was before she gave birth to Rebecca. aww.

My Michigander this one too.

Tom, Jenna and I...Molly and I determined that I look like her here...oh the bliss. 
Just sitting here, listening to my menfolk talk about work and the coming months. David is facing some changes, rather large ones, with his company. While we completely trust the Lord, it is hard not to worry a little bit. So, I'm not gonna worry...gonna lay these things at His feet.

I'd like to ask for some prayer on these work situations and also for David as he is having his second PRK (think Lasik) surgery for his eyes tomorrow morning....The, just so delicate and I pray it all goes well and he is able to go without glasses for the next few years.

I wanted to swing by my beloved blog to show it some love and ask for prayer.

and hey, thanks for the suggestions for the sitting area. womp womp.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

sitting area HELP!!

ok so here's the lower level area...which is RIGHT next to the kitchen area...the magenta flue will be painted grey (my signature color, folks). I will be changing the colors down here sometime this winter...

We are hoping to get an electronic piano (Mom, Dad, want your piano back??) to save on some much needed room down here but that's up in the air....Mel could put that in her room or upstairs. I'd like a grown up seating area, maybe two wing back chairs or overstuffed chairs with a table and maybe a small TV attached to a wall but ya know, I'm kind of at a loss as to what to do in this help me...PLEEEEASE. I want this to be cozy and inviting and right now it just IS NOT. The chair is free to a good home...I lovingly got it from a good friend and it's so comfy but doesn't match my colors...

It'd be nice to have a space that peeps could kick back in...

I used to have an area rug here also but that is I will need a new one of those too. with all that money we have growing out back ya know.....

There ya a sister out. There ya have it...our ugly space. eww.

168 Thursdays...

Hi and good afternoon!!

This brochure came in the mail on Tuesday. I'm doing better with baby mail though it still stops me in my tracks a bit.
There's a story as to why our names are in this annual report
and I'll blog about it someday but not today...just know that seeing our boy's name in print, in remembrance, causes my heart to swell. 

so, it's obvious that I love my Starbucks people....Kaitlin, Cassie, Susie, Anna, Pam etc
the girls and I stopped there on Tuesday night...I got out of the car and started looking for my keys...realizing that I'd left the car ON....hence Cassie's adorable artwork on our cup (below and well, above also)
We love our Stonegate Starbucks people. Immensely.

seven additional songs came out on Tuesday from these guys...we are digging their tunes.
Just ask Ethan...

this person is something else. and her big sis takes/edits good pics.

I seriously have 3 or 4 different blog posts rolling around in my noggin so in that sense, it's like I've been blogging....right?

I am still processing my post on could be gory and difficult so as I make notes and process it all, I shall hold off on blogging about it. so you know, I thank the Lord for the friends (which includes so much family) He has put in my life. Lost friendships, challenged friendships, friendships that make no sense yet we hang on and friendships that are thankful for all of them. that's where I'm going...and I know so many of you are also. so stay tuned for that blog may show up her before the end of 2014....heehee.

Life is so fast paced, good, busy, blessed, challenging, amazing and packed full of goodness. I am so grateful that 168 Thursdays ago, I was redeemed.

I just wanted to make sure that was stated....I do not take that lightly.

As I sit here at our table this afternoon, Molly is chowing down on some cottage cheese, hopefully with clean hands but probably not ya know cuz she's all about chickens and such. We've had some escape artist chickens today...never dull. And according to Mel, the chickens have cute bums. so I checked them out and she's right....they are pretty cute, though chickens, in general, are rather grody.

We had a weather system move through last night and it brought cooler temps...which are super awesome if I do say so myself, though I am not looking forward to another winter. bah. Today, we have windows open and it's magical....Mel and Levi are working on their school out on the porch...Molly just dreads school these days so any suggestions to encourage her to LOVE school are welcome....

We are slowly getting our house projects finished and I couldn't be happier...there's always something though, isn't there?? are we ever happy? I have a blog post I hope to put up today about what to do with this lower level sitting I'll post a pic and ask for suggestions. Kinda at a loss...

We hope to have the boys' graduation celebration in early October so more info on that soon too.

so many good things in store, I can just hardly stand it all. and that doesn't even include Christmas or our numerous trips to Gulf Shores this coming winter. (haha!!)...or my 42nd birthday (gasp!!)

I'll be back....stay tuned.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Light vs Darkness

these are just some random shots that were recently imported to my computer. 
There's no rhyme or reason as to why I've blogged them, simply that I didn't want a picture-less post...

Setting up for the church picnic

found this on Instagram and LOVE it.

Love evenings like this when my guys sit around and strum guitars and wax eloquent about
life. (Ethan was sitting here, I was just trying to snap some pix of the door divider for David's aunt)

As I mentioned, our church had a picnic last week and one of the fun treats was sno cones.
Will and E chose blue razzzzberry. 

My Aunt Mimi was the family shutterbug. She passed the torch to my brother Tom. In dividing up her photos, my dad's sister, Nancy (Hi Aunt Nan!!!) sent a boat load of pix/slides and the like to Tom. He found a converter thingy and has gone mad, simply mad going through all of these treasures that we've probably never really seen.
I'm kind of amazed.
These two cool cats are my parents. Doesn't my sixth child's hair 'do remind you of my father's??? Also, we think Ethan looks a lot like my dad also....kinda cool that we gave E my dad's name (James) and he resembles him so.
wow. I just rambled a lot. sorry.
Mom & Dad? you're cuties.

this is priceless. My Dad's parents, Jean and Gaines, holding Tom and Jenna.
whatta treasure.
Plenty more where these have come from.

Remember when I said I'd be better about blogging? I was kidding....funny huh?

Well, I'm back.

I think one of the reasons that I kinda avoid my blog is because I seriously have so many wild, crazy, deep, not deep, all over the place but not, thoughts in my head. I sincerely do not ever want to offend anyone and if I do? Please know that that is not my intention. I pray about these posts before I post them anymore and if I say heavy stuff, it's because I've been dealing with it for a few days/weeks/months...

all that to say, my deep thought for this day is as follows:

  !!! shine the Light !!! 

I am a Christian. I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I am not called to be like you, or other Christians but like HIM. I have a relationship with Him and the Holy Spirit convicts me (often, all the time, a lot) to be more like Him pretty much all day long.

All that to say....I am not embarrassed by fact, I'm very unashamed about my love for The Father, The Son and The Holy Ghost. I realize that we live in very tumultuous times, when people "say" they are "Christian" but live exactly OPPOSITE of this fact. Or mock or bully you for this fact.

Ethan, my philosophical son, summed it up best...and I will probably butcher this analogy but here goes:

it's like this...

Someone asks a man how long he's been married and he replies "Twenty years!!" This someone asks the man where his wife is, to which he replies "I don't know...haven't seen her since!!" ridiculous, eh? yeah, that's what so. many. of. us. do. with. JESUS.

that's what so many people do...they say a prayer when they are 3, 5, 8, or 12 and think HEY, I've got my golden ticket....and then live like devils, rejecting Christ right and left. You would never ever in a million years know they were Christians....David calls our side of town Southside Safeside (heck, this is America)...everyone  is Christian and yet all around us, rejection, rejection, rejection!! the way we spend our time, the things that come out of our mouths, the things we put into our heads with TV, sports, literature, news,  movies, music, etc....(I am in no way implying that a Christian can't have a royal blast...because you've seen the things we do...we have so much fun, and I think we are only getting started).

it's not just about attending church...going to church doesn't make you a "Christian" anymore than going to McDonald's makes you a cheeseburger (Keith Green)....

We've been fooling ourselves for far too long...bad theology. You can know the Bible forwards/backwards/inside and out but if you aren't living the Bible (and folks, I get beat up on this daily....I've been up against the ropes for over three years now), forget about it.

Fox News won't save you...
Human friendship will not save you...
neither will "The Family Guy" or Channing Tatum...
Mr. Rogers won't either...or being a really nice guy...that won't do it either.

Jesus Christ. The Redeemer. The One True God. The Lamb that was slain. The Word made Flesh. God with Us.

Run to Jesus. Do you know Him?

Hebrews 13:8 says this..."Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and to day, and forever."
John 17:3 says this..."And this is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent."

Let me encourage you, in the vein of last week's post about spiritual health being start your day out reading your Bible and spending time in prayer. Your troubles and stress won't magically disappear but when they come, and they will, you will be better equipped to deal with them.

God isn't my Co-Pilot...He's my Pilot. thanks for letting me get that outta my head. If you have any questions about how to go about any of this, I'm completely available to talk, chat, answer your questions or point you in the right direction of someone that can help you. Just want to encourage you to seek Him.

In other news:
my mom's wound is healing up, slow n steady. The wound vac is doing it's thing but she's still gotta way to go. they will be heading to Gulf Shores in mid-November this year...staying till March.

David will be having a surgical procedure on his eyes in a few more glasses for that boy (again. he had it done in 2006 also)

Will, Ethan and Mel are doing such a good job working for David's company. Mel doesn't work as much, obviously, but they are all super glad to have a good work environment to learn in.

The chickens are getting feisty...that's all I'm allowed to say, apparently. :/ we will have eggs soon...

Levi has changed up his piano routine...he's doing more singing with it and more of the chord playing. I wish I understood it all more. Mel could tell you.

Molly kinda despises doing's kind of annoying. She's really cute though so that helps.

Mel and Will purchased some microphones and a big speaker thingamajig to start working on more worship and future recording?? We have also put a drum set in layaway and are encouraging Molly to want to play them.

I'm finding it hard to believe it's September already. what in the world? less than four months until Christmas. and my 42nd birthday. urgh.

Ok...well, I need to go make some stars...I am tired tonight...moved our whole bedroom around today, in the hopes that it would encourage the spiders to leave....that's a story for another day. ew.