Friday, May 30, 2008

Dead Chipmunk in the Pool....Ahhhhh!

The excitement just never seems to stop around here! All week long, I've been looking forward to Friday night. I was planning to sit under the Tiki Hut by the pool, listen to music, watch my son play in the pool with some friends, and enjoy Hayley Grace and her friend Lindsay as they sang and pretended to be Hannah Montana. Listen to my oldest son tell me his weekend plans. And enjoy the fact that Jeff and Dylan were on an outing together at the Charlotte Knights baseball game It was just going to be good Friday night fun. Until.....

While the pizzas were cooking, Hayley Grace and Lindsay ran in the house and proclaimed, "There's a rat in the pool, can we still go swimming?" Now keep in mind, they had totally straight faces and were serious. I thought for certain they were joking. They promised they weren't. So I walked outside. Sure enough there WAS a rodent in the pool. A little smaller than a rat, but a relative I'm sure. Floating atop the water was a stiff little chipmunk. I said, "Oh that's not a rat, it's a chipmunk." "Mommy, is it Chip or Dale?", asked Hayley Grace. "No, it's not." (I knew she would start crying if I said yes.) "Well, can we still go swimming?" "No! That's gross! We have to shock the pool." "We don't care." "Well, I care, you can't swim."

This went back and forth for about 10 minutes. All the while I'm thinking, How am I going to get this dead thing out of the pool. Jeff is gone with Dylan, and I don't want to scoop it out.....hmmmm. About that time, Hayden, my tough 12 year old came out to see what was going on. An idea popped into my head......"Hayden, I need you to be the man of the house since Dad isn't here. Ok?" "Ok" he said. He had no idea what was to happen next.

Poor guy, he tried to get that thang out of the pool. Instead it just got trapped in the filter. That made it even harder to get out. I ended up having to get a small collendar out of my kitchen to scoop it out. As Hayden scooped, us girls ran away screaming. He moved it from the colendar to the pool net. Then proceeded to chase us with the pool net. I was screaming and threatening his life all at the same time. Check out these photos:

Hayley Grace tries to push the dirty little rat from the filter back into the pool. The pole you see has a net on the end trying to capture it on the other end. They could not get it out of the filter though.

Hayden and Lindsay try to move it. Still no luck.

Finally, brave Hayden scoops it out with our kitchen collendar. (btw, this collendar is now history. I will never use it again to drain broccoli...or anything else!)

Lindsay gets crazy while Hayden moves the little dead fella from the collendar to the pool net.

Look closely. Do you see the thang? There he is. I know it's a he. A she would not have jumped in the pool unable to get out!

I only wish you could see the unseen in this photo. Hayden is chasing the girls with the dead rodent in the net. You have never heard such sharp shrills in your life.

More screams!

This is Hayden. I actually gave him permission to dump our dead friend on the golf course behind our house. (Please don't tell on us!) So, here he is doing just that. I wonder what the Saturday golfers will think of the new addition to the 11th Fairway?

Here he is. My hero! Hayden, you rock! Thank you for getting Chip (or Dale)...that dead thang out of our pool. We are shocking it now and thanks to you, we will be able to swim tomorrow. You are too cool for school.

There you have it. Our exciting Friday. Stay tuned. I'm sure there will be more to come.
Have a great weekend friends. Rodent free I hope.



Thursday, May 29, 2008

Back in the Study Again:)

I am so excited that I could just scream and do a dance around the den! After 8 loooonnnnng months of not being in a Bible study, I started a new one last night. I can already tell that it is 100% God ordained and that the 3 of us studying together were brought together for such a time as this:)

For years I have been in a Bible study group that I affectionately refer to as "My Fab 5". And believe me, they are fab! This was a group of women who became some of my closest friends. Each week I looked forward to Wednesday mornings when we would gather to chit chat, pray, and study the Word of God. They became like a lifeline in my life. Once a year, we'd try to get away, just the girls, for a weekend. We got to know each other's families. We cried, laughed, and shared life together, all in the name of Jesus. I thought I'd be in this group forever, but it was not meant to be.

Last October, it was necessary for me to return to the workforce. This was both a blessing and a hardship. The blessing was that our family needed the money and I got the best job in the world working in the Proverbs 31 Ministries office. The hardship was that I had to give up my beloved Fab 5 Bible study. Even though I knew this was the will of God, I still cried and it was very hard. Each Wednesday I would think about my group meeting together without me:( Now this may sound crazy to those of you who don't know the joy of a closeknit group of friends, but I tell you the truth. I went through a grieving process! They tried to keep me in the loop by including me on emails and social events, but of course it's just not the same when you can't be there each week.

I prayed God would remove the pain and sadness I felt over leaving this group. I thanked Him for my wonderful job at Proverbs, which I hope to never leave.

A glimmer of hope came my way, when my former group entertained the thought of switching to night time. It turned out to be just a passing thought however. Most of them could not do a night group, and I totally understood. This did get me thinking though. Why couldn't I just start a new group? I had a good friend, Alexa, who had just gone back to work. I knew she really missed her friends and she loves to read the Word of God. I mentioned it to her. She prayed about it.

In the mean time, I was telling another friend, Julie, about it. Although she doesn't work during the day (well she works alright, just not outside the home!) she felt led to join our study. She had been leading a group for a few years and needed a break from leadership.

The 3 of us met together last night for the first time. When the night was over, the Lord had made it crystal clear why the 3 of us had come together. The timing couldn't be better, it's God's timing. And I'm glad I waited for it.

We are studying "30 Days to Taming Your Tongue" and if my tongue is indeed tamed in the next 30 days, my husband and children will be doing a happy dance around the den!

Although over the past 8 months, I never quit studying God's Word, there's just something special about studying it with others. Especially when you can open up and encourage each other in your daily Walk and help hold each other accountable. I'm a people person. I need me some peeps!

I will always miss my former group, but the good thing is, we will always be friends and continue to see each other on occasions. If you are reading, Amy Wangs, Mary Beth, Julie Kav, Denise, LeGena, Michelle, Angie, and DeAnnah, you guys rock. It was fun, deep, meaningful, and an incredible journey studying with you. I'll be Miss Piggly Wiggly 1985 for the rest of my life because of y'all! I miss you and love you all to pieces. I hope one day our paths will cross in study again. You all taught me so much. Some of which I'll pass on posting:)

And looking back, I thank God for the 8 months I went without a group for I needed to seek Him alone and deal with some issues in my life. It didn't seem fun, but I know I needed it in order to realize that God was indeed in control.

Julie Kel and Alexa, if by chance you are reading, thank you so much for giving your time on Wednesday nights to meet together. I can't wait to see what God has in store for us!

If you are not in a group or have never been in one, I encourage you to find one. You just don't know what you are missing. I didn't either...until I didn't have it anymore. So glad I'm back in the study again!

Now I'm off to practice taming my tongue!

Much Love,


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Shallow I Know...

But I just have to say...


I picked him from the time he sang "Hello"!!!

Rock on,


Thursday, May 1, 2008

My Pleasure

Have you ever noticed that when you go to Chic-Fil-A and place an order, when you say "Thank You" to the person helping you, they always reply, "My Pleasure." I love that. If I had to guess, serving chicken nuggets, waffle fries, and sweet tea all day long is not really a pleasure, but their job. Without fail though, the employees there give me the feeling that it really is a pleasure for them to put my food order together in a bag and hand it to me through the drive through window. Even when I ask for more polynesian sauce...they still reply, "My pleasure."

What if we all replied in that manner when someone said "thank you" or asked us to do something? I thought about this last night, when my son said, "Mom, thank you for dinner." "You're welcome", I said. Then I thought about the Chic-Fil-A response and added, "It was my pleasure."

Honestly I don't enjoy cooking. I wish I did. I tried to act like I did for a long time because most of my friends like to cook and are real good at it. I'm blessed with those Martha Stewart type friends. Oh how I wish I had their sense of homemaking and baking and decorating. But I don't. Nothing about that interests me, so those things are more like tasks to me. However, with that said, even though I don't enjoy most things other wives and moms do, it's still my pleasure to do them for my family. My Pleasure is more of an attitude than a reply. So I've decided to say it...often!

Do you know that when you look at a task as a pleasure rather than a task it can actually become a pleasure. Don't get me wrong, I still don't like to cook, but I do like the fact that I am providing something for my family that is not only good for them, but it also brings our family together. It truly is my pleasure. Try using that reply (with a smile) and see how it changes the task at hand.

"Melissa, thank you for helping me pack those boxes." "My Pleasure."

"Mom, thank you for helping me with my homework." "My Pleasure."

"Mom, will you drive me to Thomas' house?" "My Pleasure."

"Melissa, could you edit your devotion and have it complete within the hour?" "My Pleasure."

"Maam, do mind waiting a little longer for your appointment?" "My Pleasure."

"Honey, thank you for :) :) :)" "My Pleasure." :)

Blessings to You,