Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Dancing Queens

We went to watch Emma dance this morning at the half-time of a basketball game. The girls did really awesome considering they have only learned half of the dance which they will also be performing at their recital in April. Their CD kept skipping but it didn't phase them. They just kept right on dancing. They all looked so cute in their bright orange sequin costumes. It reminded me of my orange sequin wearing days at UT.




After the dancing, Emma had a birthday party at the skating rink to attend. It was just me and Emma since Leah went to Mimi's for the weekend and Jackson went to another basketball game with Josh. (There were some kids from Josh's youth group playing).

I decided to just sit and watch Emma skate with her friends as to not embarass her. As I sat there I kept thinking about my pre-teen years. I spent just about every Friday night at the skating rink. I had cool white roller skates with hot pink wheels. My parents would drop me off at the rink where I would skate and dance the night away with friends.

After reminiscing awhile, I couldn't stand it. I went up to the skate counter and asked for some size 8's. After all, what good are parents if you can't embarass your kids? Plus, I just had to see if I still had all my moves.

I did.

I skated for a little while with Emma, trying to teach her a few tricks, before I realized that almost 20 years and a few extra pounds makes your feet less forgiving of the time spent on wheels.




Thursday, January 29, 2009

Per your request...

As requested, here are some pictures of the cakes that I made for my nephew, Elijah's first birthday and Jackson's 4th birthday.

Elijah likes monkeys so his had the monkey theme.

Jackson is into pretending to be a dinosaur right now, so his had the dino theme.


Sunday, January 25, 2009

Playing House in The White House

I thought this was too great not to share. This video clip was featured on The Today Show. In it you hear Jenna and Barbara Bush reading a letter that they wrote to Sasha and Melea Obama. I thought it was wonderfully thoughtful.

*Remember to pause the music player at the bottom before you play the movie.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Just Practicing For Mardi Gras!

You may remember I did a "name that photo" thing a few posts ago for this photo...


Good comments. My favorite comment was from my friend Stacie who wrote,

"just practicing for mardi gras!"

Made me giggle.

I'm going to have to get my "girl gone wild" under control, I guess.
No more flashing for beads! :)

Thanks Stacie! You win bragging rights!

Take a look at this next picture. Think I might have passed on my nail-biting habit?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Hope

I saw a link to this article on BooMama's blog. The story is truly inspirational. You might need some tissues.

Life of Reilly
There are some games in which cheering for the other side feels better than winning.
by Rick Reilly



Melinda Wright
Gainesville State players douse head coach Mark Williams in celebration.

They played the oddest game in high school football history last month down in Grapevine, Texas.

It was Grapevine Faith vs. Gainesville State School and everything about it was upside down. For instance, when Gainesville came out to take the field, the Faith fans made a 40-yard spirit line for them to run through.

Did you hear that? The other team's fans?

They even made a banner for players to crash through at the end. It said, "Go Tornadoes!" Which is also weird, because Faith is the Lions.

It was rivers running uphill and cats petting dogs. More than 200 Faith fans sat on the Gainesville side and kept cheering the Gainesville players on—by name.

"I never in my life thought I'd hear people cheering for us to hit their kids," recalls Gainesville's QB and middle linebacker, Isaiah. "I wouldn't expect another parent to tell somebody to hit their kids. But they wanted us to!"

And even though Faith walloped them 33-14, the Gainesville kids were so happy that after the game they gave head coach Mark Williams a sideline squirt-bottle shower like he'd just won state. Gotta be the first Gatorade bath in history for an 0-9 coach.

But then you saw the 12 uniformed officers escorting the 14 Gainesville players off the field and two and two started to make four. They lined the players up in groups of five—handcuffs ready in their back pockets—and marched them to the team bus. That's because Gainesville is a maximum-security correctional facility 75 miles north of Dallas. Every game it plays is on the road.

This all started when Faith's head coach, Kris Hogan, wanted to do something kind for the Gainesville team. Faith had never played Gainesville, but he already knew the score. After all, Faith was 7-2 going into the game, Gainesville 0-8 with 2 TDs all year. Faith has 70 kids, 11 coaches, the latest equipment and involved parents. Gainesville has a lot of kids with convictions for drugs, assault and robbery—many of whose families had disowned them—wearing seven-year-old shoulder pads and ancient helmets.

So Hogan had this idea. What if half of our fans—for one night only—cheered for the other team? He sent out an email asking the Faithful to do just that. "Here's the message I want you to send:" Hogan wrote. "You are just as valuable as any other person on planet Earth."

Some people were naturally confused. One Faith player walked into Hogan's office and asked, "Coach, why are we doing this?"

And Hogan said, "Imagine if you didn't have a home life. Imagine if everybody had pretty much given up on you. Now imagine what it would mean for hundreds of people to suddenly believe in you."

Next thing you know, the Gainesville Tornadoes were turning around on their bench to see something they never had before. Hundreds of fans. And actual cheerleaders!

"I thought maybe they were confused," said Alex, a Gainesville lineman (only first names are released by the prison). "They started yelling 'DEE-fense!' when their team had the ball. I said, 'What? Why they cheerin' for us?'"

It was a strange experience for boys who most people cross the street to avoid. "We can tell people are a little afraid of us when we come to the games," says Gerald, a lineman who will wind up doing more than three years. "You can see it in their eyes. They're lookin' at us like we're criminals. But these people, they were yellin' for us! By our names!"

Maybe it figures that Gainesville played better than it had all season, scoring the game's last two touchdowns. Of course, this might be because Hogan put his third-string nose guard at safety and his third-string cornerback at defensive end. Still.

After the game, both teams gathered in the middle of the field to pray and that's when Isaiah surprised everybody by asking to lead. "We had no idea what the kid was going to say," remembers Coach Hogan. But Isaiah said this: "Lord, I don't know how this happened, so I don't know how to say thank You, but I never would've known there was so many people in the world that cared about us."

And it was a good thing everybody's heads were bowed because they might've seen Hogan wiping away tears.

As the Tornadoes walked back to their bus under guard, they each were handed a bag for the ride home—a burger, some fries, a soda, some candy, a Bible and an encouraging letter from a Faith player.

The Gainesville coach saw Hogan, grabbed him hard by the shoulders and said, "You'll never know what your people did for these kids tonight. You'll never, ever know."

And as the bus pulled away, all the Gainesville players crammed to one side and pressed their hands to the window, staring at these people they'd never met before, watching their waves and smiles disappearing into the night.

Anyway, with the economy six feet under and Christmas running on about three and a half reindeer, it's nice to know that one of the best presents you can give is still absolutely free.

Hope."

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Thoughts on Inauguration

I've been watching a bit of the inaguration coverage. It's incredible to be watching such a historical day. I am excited for the Obama's. I'm celebratory for our nation and yet, I also feel a burden to pray feverently for our country.

I know that president Bush's popularity declined rapidly towards the end of his presidency, but I believe that he is a good hearted man who did a good job, given the circumstances, leading our country. (If you feel the urge to argue with me on this point, please don't)

I have always loved Laura Bush and count her among the few famous people that I would really love to meet and have a conversation with. I think she is very classy and sincere.

I wish both George and Laura Bush the best and thank them for their service. I pray that Obama is treated with more respect than Bush has been over the last 8 years.


I was just listening to Emma and her friend have a conversation about the new president. This is how it went:

Emma: There's the new president on T.V.

Her friend: I don't really like the new president.

Emma: Why? I voted for him. (They had a mock election at school)

Her friend: I just don't.

Emma: He's the first black skinned president. But I would not have voted for a woman president because I want to be the first woman president.

She's a smart one, that girl is.

Reminds me of another story about my dad. He ran for class president in either Junior High or High school. I can't remember. His last name is Sapp. So he made signs to hang in the bathroom stalls that said, "Don't Crap, Vote for Sapp". Yes he did. He didn't win. I would've voted for you dad....just for the awesome signs. LOL. We still love you dad. :)

Happy Inaguration day everybody!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Name This Photo

This photo needs a caption.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I won!!!

UPDATE: Mad Church Disease was NOT released last week it is due to be released on February 1st. My bad.

I am soooo excited because I just won the coolest blog giveaway contest from FlowerDust.net The giveaway was for a Logos Scholar's Library Software package. Logos is an awesome $630 collection of Bible study helps perfect for the Youth Pastor man in my life. If you were to buy everything included in this software from print materials you would have to spend over $6,000.

The randomn number generator picked # 165 which just so happened to be yours truly.

As a small thank you to Anne, I am featuring her book, Mad Church Disease: Overcoming the Burnout Epidemic which was released just this past week. I have not read the book yet, but I am ordering it today.


The Mad Church Disease website says its "a lively, informative and potentially life-saving resource for anyone in ministry, vocational or volunteer, who wants to understand, prevent or treat the epidemic of burnout in churches."

Check out Anne's author site and her blog.

You can also download and read a sample chapter from her book here.

Thank you so much for the software, Anne!

Look Who's Turning One Today!!!


We'd just like to give a shout out to our cousin, Elijah, who is turning one whole year old today. Happy Birthday Cuz! You Rock!!

Just Look At That Sweet Face!


"My Mom Is Freakin' Hilarious!"


"I Have The Best Daddy Ever!"


Dad's Little Man

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: "The Look"

Me, giving Jackson "The Look" and telling him to come, sit down, smile and get his gosh darn Christmas picture taken! Dad, where do I get this from?

Monday, January 12, 2009

First Time...Ever I Saw Your Face


I saw this photo contest on Valarie's blog. Thought I would participate since I have 3 pretty cute faces running around here. Here are three favorite "face" pictures, one of each child, from this last year. Want to check it out? Go here.


Update: It helps if you read the contest rules before you enter the contest. Only one photo allowed. So Leah is the only one getting entered this week. Emma and Jackson another time, I guess.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Jackson is 4 Today!


4 years ago today our lives were blessed by a bouncing baby boy. At 6lbs 11 oz. he was just a little thing, but we were all so proud of him, especially his big sister.

3 days later we went home from the hospital following up the next day with the pediatrician. I'll never forget when Dr. Joe looked in Jackson's mouth and saw blisters on the back of his tongue. A look of concern flooded his face and he immediately left to get another doctor to look at the sores. Within 10 minutes we were being given instructions to go immediately to Children's Hospital to be admitted. At the time, I was obviously concerned but ignorant to the possibilities that lay before my baby boy.

Jackson had, what is referred to as, Coxsackie Virus. You've probably had it before. It is a common cold accompanied by sores in the mouth. It can also present as "Hand, Foot and Mouth". For us, it's not such a big deal but to a newborn it can be deadly. The virus can easily spread to the cardiac muscle of a newborn causing fluid to build around the heart and ultimately, heart failure.

We stayed at Children's Hospital for 24 hours for close observation. The Lab Tech who came to draw Jackson's blood looked terrified. He said that he had never drawn blood from a baby that small (Way to put the mom at ease). Most babies, that small, who are sick, never leave the hospital where they were born. The people at Children's hospital were used to dealing with older infants and children. Jackson and I cried together as they drew what seemed like an enormous amount of blood from his tiny arm. We were discharged only after taking an Infact CPR class and being given a heart monitor that Jackson would have to wear for the next 2 months.

By God's grace, Jackson did just fine. He was monitored by a pediatric cardiologist who gave him a clean bill of health at 2 months old.

For all that he went through in the first precious days of his life, you would never know it now. He has the energy level of 10 four year olds. Like any little boy, he can be pretty ornery sometimes, but he has a lot of love to give and I can't imagine life without his sweet face.

Jackson, I am so happy you're here. You're momma loves you bunches!

Happy Birthday Buddy.

Monday, January 5, 2009