Saturday, December 29, 2007!

Finally, here are the pics from the Christmas Sweater party! I have been taking lots of pics of our time in Oregon. We are now in Sunriver, where there is a couple of feet of snow on the ground. We have had so much fun so far sledding, making snow ice cream and watching movies by the fire...I hope to post more about that when we get back to Texas!
We miss all you Texans!

Josh Drew and John had a cupcake eating contest!

Love the womens turtleneck Adam!
The bowman's!
And the winners of the night...Nat Drew and my husband!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Christmas Sweaters...need I say more?

Well John won the ugly Christmas Sweater contest at our home group on Monday! I will post pics as soon as I get them!!! I haven't even seen it myself, looking forward to it!

Make it a great day everyone!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Loving our new neighbors

Sunday I baked Zucchini Bread all afternoon, 8 baby loaves! I wrapped them, tied red ribbon and a green note on them and then John and I bundled up to deliver all the treats to our neighbors! I think it is the highlight of the season for me! It was cold, the house smelled like delicious bread, I had it in a cute basket(I love baskets)...and I absolutely loved watching peoples reactions as we met them and gave them a very unexpected gift! It was so interesting because mostly people were shocked at first , that a neighbor would do this, and then they were very grateful! I loved every minute of it! I am going to make it a Christmas tradition! I'm sure it will be even more fun when we do it with kids! NO..we are not pregnant- I know how all of you are! ;-)
I am headed to Portland today! I will be gone until January 1st and I am so looking forward to hanging out with my in laws..most of you are probably thinking I am joking but I really do love all my inlaws ( parents and siblings) so I am very excited!
I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas; I pray that you find time to think about our God and the most amazing gift He has given us, Jesus!

Zucchini Bread Recipe:
Preheat oven to 350
3 eggs 1/4 t baking powder
1 C oil 1 t baking soda
2 C sugar 3 t cinnamon
2 C grated zucchini 1 t salt
3 C flour 1 t vanilla

Beat eggs, add flour & next ingredients and mix.
Pour into 2 greased loaf pans- bake for 1 hour. ( check with toothpick, you want a very thin coating on the toothpick so the bread isn't too dry)

Enjoy- you really can't mess this one up!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Pictures for your enjoyment

This is our week in pictures...( ok, and a few words)

John thinks it is dumb to take pictures of ourselves,clearly, he is humoring me! ( but he is right it never goes well..check out the double chin)

Emily Rozell and I at the Denton Wasaill Festival on The Square, last Thursday! I did have a silly face but then I just started laughing! We had a great time!

There is a better pic of them on their blog, The Rozell's.

This is for the Knakal's- they had a Fire Truck for kids to tour...OR for adults to be silly!

John and his new toy- a lead blower/vac. We bought this yesterday because John raked 6 huge bags of leaves on Friday and on Saturday you couldn't even tell! :( .We have SOOOO many leaves. According to the box of this new toy we could just blow all the leaves in a pile and suck them up...well he ended up having to rake most of them up AND now he is sick....hmm was that a well spent $100? Just kidding, it really did help save time!

Lastly , when John came back from lunch he said it smelled in the house...yes, it is what it may actually NOT look like anymore. I left a sweet potato in the oven, YIKES! I couldn't even break it! It was so light weight but hard as a rock!
I hope everyone has a great week!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Poor Dog!

So I had to get on today because John informed me that there were several grammatical errors in my last post...I told him it was because it was 11pm when I was posting last night and I was tired..anyhow, errors corrected! :)

I thought I would take this opportunity to share with you the before and after pictures of our dog, Stewart's, hair cut...Get Ready!

Before: ( doesn't he look just pissed)

After: ( I have a treat in my hand hence the tongue sticking out of his mouth)

Go ahead and laugh...we know, he looks like a dork! We like him with long hair,even though the before pic is a little extreme! :) I think he freezes all day now! Poor guy!

Now- Since 6 pm I have swept and mopped the floors, vacuumed, cleaned out my fridge from Thanksgiving, done all my dishes , blogged of course and I am going to go enjoy the HUGE fire that John just built- YAY!

Monday, November 26, 2007

My first Thanksgiving!

Does anyone know how to make this pic stand the right way?

Well, John and I hosted our very first Thanksgiving! Thankfully it was a small one. My mom and her husband Jerry came down and we had a great time! It was great practice for me and I hope to host more Thanksgivings in the future! :) I baked my first turkey, which is actually pretty easy and my first Buttermilk Chess pie! YUM!! You should definitely make one if you have never had one! There were lots more dishes and my mom helped as did John, we all made a great team!
We had a fire going from Thursday until Sunday- I loved it! Now we just need to clean out our fireplace so we can keep having fires throughout the winter!

So now I have 2 1/2 weeks until I leave for Portland for the rest of the year! Can you believe it! I will be working some and spending time with friends and family that I miss very much! My planning lead to an email to Kourtney to ask her to dog-sit while we are gone...this was a risky email considering her first ( and only) experience dog-sitting for us just a couple of weeks ago...She had quite a time! First of all, we only gave her maybe 2 hours notice. ( I didn't know I was going on the college retreat with John)...When we came back Kourtney began to tell me two hilarious stories..I was laughing so hard that I cried- and I don't laugh that hard very often! To sum it up Kourtney had to tear off a window screen from a very muddy lawn ( with only socks on!-and pj's) and one night she woke up at 5am thinking Stewart was dead, so doing what anyone one do she picked him and started shaking him! That was when I was laughing so hard I cried! You should ask her to tell you the story! Surprisingly she agreed to watch our dogs again after I listed the reasons why this time would be better! We still have to find someone to fill in for when she goes home for Christmas but I'm sure we'll find someone- let me know if you'll be in Denton over Christmas day! I promise our dogs are not that out of control!

For a house update, we finally got our bed up!!! YAY! We are not sleeping on the floor anymore! We also got the room painted- green! I really like it and I can't wait to get the master bath painted as well!
In the formal living room John brought in his comfy chair, a table and lamp so that has become his reading/studying room- he enjoys it in there..drinks coffee and reads!

I have a new discipline that I am starting as well. I told John that I want to start waking up when he does...I want to make his coffee and get him off to work. I know, I know sounds like the Cleaver's or something! This is hard for me because I am not a morning person and since I work from home I can easily roll out of bed and go straight to work...I want to change my ways- wake up, get John's coffee, my tea and have some time praying and then get to work. You can ask me about this discipline! Please do! I am starting tomorrow!

Things are slowing down a tiny bit at least for 2 weeks so I will post a little more often, I feel like you all have missed out because I've been a slacker! ;-)

Monday, November 19, 2007

Texas is so weird

How does it drop 40 degrees in 2 days?

Mon 80°F 61°F
Tue 83°F 60°F
Wed 62°F 36°F
Thu 47°F 32°F

In the 80's today and tomorrow BUT the 40's on Thursday....random!
Oh, well I am ready for the cooler weather!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

This is for Molly!

Molly, meet our other dog, Lilly:

And now, Stewart and Lilly:

So Molly, yes we would love for you to invite your self over...our house is always open to anyone, you just have to love our dogs! Except for Kimbo, she doesn't love our dogs and we still love for her to come over! :)

I hope everyone is doing well. John and I are good. We worked on the house non-stop yesterday and today. We got lots of painting done which is exciting. I will post pictures soon. We painted our dining room blue, which I am typically not a blue person but I love it. Funny thing, when I told my Mom that I painted it blue she said " Blue ???" in a very disgusted voice..just wait Mom, you'll love it!

We also went to a Shane and Shane concert tonight and it was amazing. Got to meet little Olive Everett- adorable!!! I also was reminded of Olivia tonight, I think I will be reminded of her everytime I worship. Its hard because when I sing I can just picture the Lord in Heaven being glorified and I just picture Him so grateful and pleased, smiling...and then I remember that Liv is with Him- its bittersweet.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

We've been busy!

So I know its been awhile since I posted...we have been very busy... why is it that life seems to always be that way- busy!
Here is some of what we have been up to:

John went to his first Village Staff retreat! Josh and Anne Lincoln were two of his flag football teamates!

John's grass...he planted grass in the dog run because we were getting tired of washing the dogs paws everytime they went outside! We already have some baby grass!

The Yard work begins...we have lots of trees so that means lots of leaves and lots of branches that need pruning! I did the raking while John worked on the big branches! Stewart stands by making sure everything is ok.

John and I also went to Olivia's funeral last weekend. I can't beleive it was just last weekend. The service was beautiful, John ended up doing more than just leading the worship, he also read some scripture, talked about Olivia and read a couple journal entries from her. It was a very hard time,lots of tears, and good hugs but good in that we know she is worshipping and I can't help but think that she was so happy that the Lord used her life to touch so many of us. And it won't stop. The Lord's impact through her will continue to touch people as we strive to let the Lord live through us in similar ways! That is our prayer! Thanks so much to those of you who have been praying for us and Liv's family, the Lord has been faithful and we appreciate your support!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Sweet Olivia

Well its been a weird day! I slept in and when I say that I really mean it. I didn't wake up until 11am!!! That is not normal but I took a benedryl last night and those just knock me out! I even fell asleep on the couch ( ok so that part is normal) but when John asked if I was ready to go to bed apparently I told him that I wanted to sleep there. Now John is making fun of me for my use of exclamation marks...which for some reason I tend to use instead of periods quite often! See!
Anyhow, I've been writing about our dear sweet friend Olivia this past week and this afternoon we got a call telling us that she had just passed. She just stopped breathing. My first thought was "I wonder what she is doing right now?" Half of me is so happy for her, she is with our Lord right now. . The other half of me is a mixture of emotions. I am confused, sad, fearful, the list goes on... The reason I am happy for her is because not only is she no longer in pain but she is worshipping and spending time with our Great God!! I just have this picture of Liv dancing in a waterfall, singing to the Lord. I know it may sound weird but I was listening to a song called "Conquering Lion" by Grace Faulkner ( get this song, its incredible!!). This is one of Liv's favorite songs and it talks about the Lord taking away our pain and being our living water. How amazing that she is experiencing that right now even as I type this! Of course I am very sad and will absolutely miss going through life with my friend and mentor but I can tell you that I felt peace this afternoon more than anytime this pastweek. My friend is no longer suffering, she infact has been brought to perfection!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


I have found myself very anxious today and having trouble doing anything! My mind is elsewhere. I thought about Olivia much of the day! I thought a lot about how I said goodbye but that she is still alive. I have had lots of talks with the Lord today about how my desire is for him to heal Olivia. It really is my hope and desire!
I also found that I am tired, spritually and mentally! I feel like I have nothing to give. That is hard for me! Its also interesting ( or sovereign) that John is out of town this week. I feel like I need him so bad right now but I believe with all my heart that the Lord is just using this time to draw me to himself. While it is not bad for me to want my husband to comfort me and to be here to hold me I also believe that the Lord is so much more satisfying and He longs for me more than my husband. Jesus is just waiting for me to ask him to hold me and comfort me! I am reminded of Genesis 3:16 where it says my desire will be for my husband ( this is a part of the curse from eating the apple) and I think it is saying that we as women will desire our husbands over our Creator. This is a curse because our Creator will NEVER fail us, he will always comfort us and lead us to himself! Our husbands, even when they are perfect they will not fill us like the Lord can! Why would we choose them over God?
As I am tired and have nothing to give I will find encouragement in this

5For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my
hope is from him.6 He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not
be shaken.7On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock, my refuge is
8 Trust in him at a
ll times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:5-8

Saying goodbye

I am sitting on a plane writing this right now. I just left Phoenix. I had to say bye to Olivia earlier today. I actually said “see you soon” because I really will see her soon. I will see her in heaven. I can’t wait! This was quite possibly the hardest day and ½ in my life. I have never had to say goodbye to someone. I have never seen someone close to me dying and in so much pain. I am so glad that Sam, Marisa and Shana and I were together. We supported each other, cried together, laughed together, prayed and sang together. We are still praying for our Creator to heal Liv! We know that he can do it! We believe that he can! The question I asked myself as we were on our way to see her on Sunday was “do I believe that he will?” I know that he can and would but will he? I don’t know. And I don’t know if I am supposed to know that. Our God has such bigger, deeper, richer thoughts and knowledge than I! His way of healing her may be taking her home. I also reminded myself that she is not ours to keep. She belongs to HIM! Praise that Lord that she does belong to HIM. That doesn’t make this process any easier or less confusing though. Ruth, Olivia’s mom, was talking to us and told us something that Liv had said years ago. She said “Just because I am crying doesn’t mean I am not trusting the Lord” and that is how I feel. I trust the Lord and I do believe him but I sure do still mourn for the friend that I am losing, that we are losing!
I wish everyone could meet liv!!! Those of you that know her know what I mean. She has this way of loving you for you and making the newest person she has meets feel a part. She has this smile that just grabs you and brings joy. Even as she was laying in bed and didn’t have the energy to smile, I could see it! I could see that smile and it made me smile right back at her!

I will never forget this past day and half! 4 friends sitting in a room with a friend in tremendous pain yet tremendous excitement to go home, real home, and see her maker, her father, her lover. She was ready. I don’t know when she will go, or who knows, God can still heal her! He can! We had so much fun just sitting in her room while she lay in bed. She couldn’t move and couldn’t eat, she couldn’t even talk very well but when she did it was so great! She was her usual self, just a bit “dryer” but she was making jokes and making us laugh like usual!
This is all very tough and confusing but I know that that I can find my hope in the fact that our God is good and faithful! We will see His glory through this!

Friday, October 19, 2007

What a week!

The lord is definitely stretching John and I this week! I am learning ( well trying to learn) to take the small stuff lightly and the important stuff seriously. That sounds very cliche. Let me tell you what I mean...

This week I found out that one of my best friends is not doing very well. Her name is Olivia, some of you know her or of her. She is part of the reason I am who I am today, and part of the reason that I try and be like Jesus. Olivia is a lover of Jesus Christ and has found that He is better than life!

She was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2005 and beat it! We all beleived she was healed, and she was for awhile. Last November, 2006, Dr.'s found the cancer again and now in her lungs and liver as well. Dr.'s gave her 9 months to live if she didn't do any treatment and Liv did not want treatment. She had already done it once and it was painful, time consuming, tiring and just not a way to live. So she had some naturpathic treatment done that helped and she went on living her life, thankful and joyful! We found out in July that the cancer had spread to her brain! That was difficult to handle. We all knew it was getting worse. We all prayed so hard for her!!

We got a call on Wednesday that said we need to come see her this weekend! A core group of us had tickets for next weekend so we could tell this was urgent. We will leave Sunday and return on Monday...a short trip. I have lots of feeling right now: but mostly anxiety. I don't know what to expect or how to act or anything. I feel like a alien in this world. We will see but for now I just pray that Liv will not have pain and that she will have the energy to spend time with us!

Now you wonder how this ties into my "what a week' title and not worrying about the small stuff. Well, we heard all this news on Wednesday and on Thursday we had at lease 3 different repair men or service men at the house for numerous reasons, got a quote for our ceiling texture: $4000!!!, found that our shower is leaking water into the living room carpet.... and there was more beleive it or not. I found myself being so calm and even writing this my heart is not stressing about all the money we may be shelling out here very soon- and you know me- I usually stress over these things. But when you have a dear friend who is dying, all things step aside, they become less important,perspective is gained! Maybe that is how my life always should be. I should never worry about what the earth thinks is a big deal and be more consumed with Him who loves me and longs for me to be with him all the time! He is better than anything on this earth, even good things like making my house a home ( I know it sounds cheesy) and being a wife.
I will let you know how my time with Liv goes!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Still Getting our new house!!

John and I have been in Denton for almost 2 months now! I can't beleive it has been that long! For those of you who don't know ( well , anyone reading this should know but...) we just moved to Denton ,TX from the Northwest- Portland ,Or.

We just bought and moved into a house! For the past 2 months we were bouncing between several homes that were graciously opened to us! We areso thankful that the Lord provided for us and we did not have to get a hotel or rent! The dogs, John and I are extrememly thrilled to have our own space- our new home!

This home is quite a bit different from our house in Portland as it is 27 years old ;compared to our Portland house that was only 4 years old and needed virtually no work..this house...well it needs lots of work and more than that, lots of updating! Updating will take time but we are exciting about this new adventure together!

We started with tearing the popcorn and we are currently living with no texture or paint on the cielings! We are having texture done as soon as possible!

Overall we are just thrilled to be in our own house! Even the dogs know that we are "home" and we hardly have anything unpacked. They are getting back to their usual selves!