Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Romans 12:2


"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that be testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."

We have a chalkboard in our family room that has been hanging there now for almost two months. Until yesterday it hadn't been used for its intended purpose. This morning I finally decided to begin using it. My desire is that we would use it as a family to memorize Scripture together, especially since it's located in the area where we spend most of our time as a family...the kitchen and family room.
Romans 12:2 is one of my all-time favorite verses and probably one of the very first ones I really treasured growing up. I can still remember a bumper sticker I had that displayed the verse along with an image of a fish swimming upstream. I decided this is a good place to start and wrote it up on the board during Charlee's nap.
When I brought her downstairs after her nap, the first thing she said was, "Wassat?" (What's that?) as she pointed to the chalk board. I couldn't believe that was the first thing she noticed. Even she, this little 18 month old notices the small details of the world around her. So, I read it to her and she just smiled at me the whole time. When I was through, she signed and said, "More," meaning that she wanted me to read it to her again. For some reason she gets a really big kick out of me reading it to her and has asked numerous times since for me to read it to her again. She'll even be halfway across the room in the middle of doing whatever 18 month olds do and stop what she's doing and ask, "Wassat?"
I write this not because I think it's cool that my Charlee seems to want me to read Scripture to her, though I do think that's great even though I'm pretty sure she has no idea what it is. I write this because I believe God is using my little girl to help me memorize His Word and as a reminder that to me that it is so very important to hide His Word in my heart. One might think this is all just a small coincidence, but I believe in a God who is bigger than coincidence...much bigger. The God I serve works all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. I have been called and for that I am eternally grateful! Thank you Lord for using this little 3 foot person to draw me nearer to You each day!

Monday, April 27, 2009

A Man of Integrity...

I just have to brag for a few seconds if you don't mind. My husband is an awesome man and I love him for so many reasons, one of which is for the integrity he has and displays in all that he does. You see, we've been trying to sell our Jetta for I don't even know how long now...it's been a LONG time! Finally, we got a taker this weekend. So, on Saturday afternoon it was a done deal...no more Jetta! Two days later though Adam gets a phone call from the new owner telling him the "Check Engine" light is on. Seriously, I wasn't even surprised when Adam shared the news with me...that's been our life with this car. Anyway, the best part of this story is that Adam decided to contact the shop where we've taken the car many a time and where the new owner was headed to get it checked out. He talked to the owner of the shop and made sure that when the new owner arrived with the Jetta that the part that needed to be fixed was covered and he wouldn't have to pay a dime! Now, was Adam obligated in any way to do this? Absolutely not, but because he is a man of integrity and great character he made the choice to spend an extra couple hundred dollars for this man and his son. You see, this is why I married this husband of mine! I love him so much and just had to brag for a moment. Thank you for indulging me. =)

Charlee's First Cardinals Hat

Gramma and Grampa Brockhaus just got home from a trip back to the midwest which included a St. Louis Cardinals baseball game at the new Busch Stadium. In true Cardinals fan fashion, they brought Charlee a souvenir...her very own Cardinals hat! I must say, this makes for a very proud Mama. The coolest part is that she actually enjoys wearing it...even atop the bows already on her head! Thank you Gramma and Grampa! (Note: I think this means we better track down a Husker hat quickly before Daddy gets jealous!)


Sunday, April 26, 2009

Our Many Kiddos

For the past nine months Adam and I have been serving in Children's Ministries at church. At times I still cannot believe that God has called us to serve in this way, but I feel incredibly blessed that He has. What a special time it is each Sunday to welcome these little ones into our classroom and to spend the next hour and a half loving them, playing with them and teaching them. We love our kiddos! Here's a collage of some of their precious little faces.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Friday, April 24, 2009

Moo...

Last night as I was getting a brownie and ice cream sundae ready for consumption, I experienced something very interesting...something that has never happened before! I was putting the Hershey's syrup back in the refrigerator and as I shut the door, I heard, "Moooooo!" Oh my gosh, what in the world was that? Seriously, was that for real? m yeah, that would be Charlee's little toy that hangs on the side of the refrigerator and makes noises when you make a "match" of the various animals. Hmmmm, quite interesting because the only time I've ever heard it make noise before is when you actually touch it! I thought this was pretty appropriate because I'm sure I didn't need that sundae, but it didn't stop me from eating it either! I'm thinking that if this continues, however, I might actually start listening to it!


Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Mixing Bowl

Today Charlee and I went to the Dollar Tree really for no other reason than the fact that it is next door to Sprouts which was our actual destination. As we perused the store, we (Charlee) found this fantastic mixing bowl that doubles as a hat! So, because she was so enthralled with the mixing bowl and proceeded to play peek-a-boo with me the entire time we were in the store, which cracked me up, I decided we should purchase it to be our very own. Some pictures from our adventures with the mixing bowl...




Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Fingerprints of God

This afternoon while playing upstairs with Charlee I had the strangest thought, or so it seemed at that moment. I thought to myself, "When she grows up into a woman, I wonder what it will be that she won't like about herself?" Okay, so I know this sounds slightly depressing, but for whatever reason it crossed my mind and I believe God used it at that particular moment as a reminder to me of this truth:

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.
Psalm 139: 13-16

As I look upon Charlee I see perfection and beauty. That is because I am her mother and cannot imagine her any differently. I love her just as she is and that will never change. She can do nothing to take that love from me. I am saddened when I think of all the times that I have despised the way God created me all the while forgetting that He is Creator and I have no right to tell the Creator that He has screwed up in any way. It is my fervent hope and prayer that Charlee will grow up with a love for who she was created to be...that she could cherish every little thing about herself because she know that she was perfectly created for a specific purpose in this world. During a time of great struggle for me growing up, I held onto the words of this song by Steven Curtis Chapman:

I can see the tears filling Your eyes
And I know where they're coming from
They're coming from a heart that's broken in two
By what you don't see
The person in the mirror Doesn't look like the magazine
Oh, but when I look at you it's clear to me that...

I can see the fingerprints of God
When I look at you I can see the fingerprints of God
And I know it's true
You're a masterpiece
That all creation quietly applauds
And you're covered with the fingerprints of God

Never has there been and never again
Will there be another you
Fashioned by God's hand
And perfectly planned
To be just who you are
And what He's been creating
Since the first beat of your heart
Is a living breathing priceless work of art and...

Just look at you
You're a wonder in the making
Oh, and God's not through, no
In fact, He's just getting started and…


I hope that Charlee will always know that she was perfectly planned and fashioned by God's hand. God's masterpiece given to us...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Biff and the Salad

In our house my nickname is Biff. Anyone who knows me already knows this about me...I am not the most graceful, coordinated person in the world. So, last night was a prime example. I was preparing a salad, in advance, for a family in our home group. I thought to myself, "This is great. I'll get this all ready to go tonight so I don't have to worry about it tomorrow." Ah, that's when God decided to have an LOL moment! I was annoyed because I couldn't find any space in the refrigerator to put my creation and I HATE a cluttered refrigerator. So, the salad was on the counter while I attempted to rearrange things. Finally, I had a spot for it...not one that I was happy about, however. You see, in my world, salad does not belong on the top shelf. It belongs on the middle shelf. The top shelf is for water and other drinks, the next shelf is for things such as salad and leftovers, the third shelf is for Charlee's stuff and eggs. Beneath that is milk and so on. Well, my little world was going to have to be slightly disheveled for less than a day because there was no way the salad was going to fit where it belonged. After coming to terms with this, I reached for the salad and lo and behold that's when Biff struck! Salad...all over the floor, under the refrigerator, on the wall, halfway across the kitchen...lovely! One could look at this as a bad thing, or, if you're OCD like me, you could think to yourself, "Well, now I don't have to worry about the salad being in the 'wrong' spot." :)

Monday, April 20, 2009

An Angry Mama

I am angry...so very angry right now...and it's not righteous anger! What in the world is wrong with Charlee?!?! I am appalled by the fit she has chosen to throw and we are currently taking a break from one another. I can hardly see through the tears as I try to type this. How can one little tiny person at just 18 months old be SO strong willed and stubborn? We have wooden letters that spell the word "grace" that sit atop the kitchen cabinets and from where I'm sitting here at the kitchen table they are staring me in the face like they never have before. Grace. Isn't that the key to the Truth we know? Grace. Getting what you don't deserve. Now I am convicted. If Jesus, the God of the Universe, has bestowed SO much grace upon me, how can I not do the same for my little girl? Sometimes I'd rather not think about this so that I can continue to be mad at Charlee for being disobedient, but the truth is that it never takes long before I find myself desiring to be reconciled to her. She needs me and I know what is best for her (most of the time) so I can't just give up on her. Thank you, Lord, that it is only because you chose me to receive Your good grace that I can make the choice right now to do the same for Charlee. Now that I can see clearly again, I will go retrieve her from her room and ask her forgiveness. I love that little stinker!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

An Afternoon in Agritopia

Today we decided to take advantage of what might have been the last day before we hit the hundred degree weather...I know it's imminent, but I'm still living in denial! Anyway, after naptime we headed over to one of our favorite places in Gilbert...Agritopia which is home to one of the best restaurants around, Joe's Farm Grill. One of the great things about this area is the shade (hard to come by in this area) from all the beautiful, mature citrus trees. So, we took our ball and our stroller and spent some time hanging out as a family enjoying God's beautiful creation.


Oh, another fun thing about Joe's...flowers...lots and lots of gorgeous flowers! In order to fully enjoy their splendor, they must be picked! Just don't tell Joe! Don't worry, we only let her pick a couple because of the photo opp. =)




Saturday, April 18, 2009

Our Little Cuddle Bug

Our little girl has been sick the past few days...something we would never wish upon her, but selfishly I have to admit that we've been thoroughly enjoying one particular aspect of her not feeling well. We have a little cuddler on our hands, and while we know it's just temporary, we're taking full advantage of it. Here's Charlee and Daddy snuggling together...is there anything sweeter?

Celebrating 18 months

What a difference a year makes! Today we celebrate 18 months of life with the most precious gift God has given us!

One year ago...


Today...

Friday, April 17, 2009

Daddy's Lil' Husker Fan

Had to share these pics on behalf of Daddy who is oh so proud of his little Husker fan. Perhaps we should get her a hat that actually fits so she and Daddy can wear them together? Ooh, but if we do that then we also have to get her a St. Louis Cardinals hat to keep it fair and make Mama happy! How does that sound Daddy? =)




Thursday, April 16, 2009

A Failed Blogger

Oh my goodness, I am a total failure as a blogger! So, it's been what, about 8 months since I last wrote?!?! Okay, so I've been reinspired to start blogging again after reading my dear sister-in-law's latest blog entry. I can't compete with her sense of humor, but I guess some of you still might be interested in hearing about what's going on in our little lives here in AZ.

So, since the last time I wrote (August 2008) we've experienced a few changes. Well, mostly Charlee has experienced the changes. Adam and I just get older and I'd rather not think about that! Here are a few significant changes in our little girl's life:
  • Charlee has gone from having just one tooth to having more than I can keep up with...about 8 with many more added practically daily!
  • She learned to crawl...at 12 months
  • She learned to walk...at 16 months...yikes!
  • She has added a few words to her vocabulary: more (sounds like "muah"), "wassat?" (translation: "what's that?"...her word for just about everything that she wants to eat, wants to hold, wants to see, wants you to know more about...it's pretty much all-purpose), ball, balloon (sounds like "baoon"), go (meaning she either wants up or down), bow (not surprising since there are hundreds of them in our house!), hi (this one is great because if the person to whom she's directing it doesn't respond she will repeat it over and over again until she gains the appropriate response!), bye (always accompanied by a karate chop sort of wave)
  • She has perfected the art of throwing a fit by crying while putting her head down on the ground between her legs. She'll do it on carpet, tile, in a parking lot, on the sidewalk, etc.)
  • She LOVES books...the same 3 OVER and OVER and OVER again! I am proud to say, however, that I have now memorized Oh the Thinks You Can Think.

Okay, enough for tonight...gotta ease back into this blogging thing. Please pray for my fingers to keep having the desire to type here! =) G'night!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Sunday 2009

Easter Sunday...oh, what a glorious day! We celebrate our Savior who is Risen and praise God that He has saved us from ourselves! If it weren't for this huge Truth, we would be hopeless:
"He is not here; He has risen, just as He said." (Matthew 28:6)
After church, we stopped by Tumbleweed Park on the way to Gramma and Grampa Brockhaus' to enjoy the beautiful day.

Excited to open presents:

The Ogallala Easter Bunnies sent me these crazy things called Tickle Monster gloves...how fun is that?

Mama blew some bubbles and I was pretty enthralled
Daddy and I goofed around for a bit before we had to leave...he really makes me laugh!


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Good Times at Rubio's

After church on Sundays we typically have lunch with Gramma and Grampa Brockhaus. So, while today Grampa was out of town, we went to Rubio's with Gramma and had too much fun! Here's a bit of our excitement at lunch (Please note, it doesn't take much to entertain us!):





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