Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Once at their home, my mom told us that we were not going to be going anywhere as she had planned. Sadly, our timing of the evening messed up her plans, but she then went to the closet and brought out a bag. In it, a hand muff for each of us as well as earmuffs made from our grandmother's mink coat which we all loved to "pet" during her stays with us at Christmas. None of us would ever want to wear this coat yet having this piece of our heritage with Gram brought both of us to tears. Our Gram passed away 4 years ago and we miss her so much. My mom's plan was to take us downtown for a carriage ride and pull these out to keep us warm. While that would have been more than precious, I think the way she did it allowed us to be more intimate and not worry about the fact we were weeping ladies! While the muffs will never replace our Gram, it is a sweet memory we all have and one day will be able to pass on to our kids. I am grateful that my mom gets the importance of making memories and not just filling a package under the tree. This night was precious and most likely the best gift of Christmas...but that is left to see! :)
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Matt and girls on the hunt for the "perfect" tree.
God added to our venture out for the perfect tree as it was snowing beautifully. Just enough to make it sweet and not so much to be a problem. :) God is good!
The tree with lights only.
Doodle has been a part of a dance ministry group for three years now. They are a group of committed girls who meet every Saturday morning (usually) through the school year to prepare dances to perform at churches, nursing homes and such. Their leader, Miss Pearl, has a heart like few others. She has taught these girls how to use what God has given them to glorify God. This year, as with the past two years, the group was a part of a local church's Christmas program. This was the first year, the Precious Hearts dancers wore the white outfits which was amazing to see my girl light up the first time she tried it on. She has watched the older dancers who wear these outfits for years and to finally see that happen for her was precious!
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Just like in most areas of their lives, our girlies are totally different in their running styles. While Bean is my sprinter. (Go fast or go home!) Doodle is more of the long distance runner. (Slow and steady.) Neither is better, it is just the way God made them. I find it amazing that the way they run is similar to the way they handle most things in life. Bean is quick to make decisions and get something done. While Doodle is much more determined in her steps. It takes her a long time to decide on something and she really likes to take her time and "do it right".
Thursday, November 25, 2010
I am thankful for~
10. Chocolate and chai tea....simple and yummy!
9. A home that is filled with laughter and love more than heartache and hurts. Not saying we never hurt each others feelings, but I am so thankful our family has more times of laughter than of tears.
8. Friends who love me and support me in all my endeavors. Not only supporting me, but pouring their lives into my girls hearts! I love that my girls have supports from all around them in all areas they are involved. Those women in my life at co-op, girls' dance classes, church, small group, scrapbooking buddies, lifetime friends...I adore your hearts!
7. Generous in-laws who have shown me that stuff is just stuff
6. Sunrises and sunsets that remind me of what a Mighty God I serve
5. Sister and brother who still giggle with me over our childhood jokes and also that we support each other in our endeavors regardless of how different we all are. No judgement, just love. :)
4. Parents who showed me the way to Christ and loved me enough to teach me that the best gift they could ever give me was to love each other well. I am grateful my parents did not try to be my friend when I was younger but were my parents who loved me enough to discipline me and teach me to do things the "right" way. :)
3. Being blessed to be called Mommy~ a word I never thought I would hear. I am thankful to have two beautiful girls who bless me with laughter, joy and love daily. These girls have a love and knowledge of God that I am in awe of daily.
2. Being married to a man who I adore and adores me. Having a marriage that is never taken for granted and where we see God's hand throughout. I am grateful Matt understands this woman's heart.
1. Having a God who loved me enough that He laid down His life for mine. While I was still a sinner, He died for me. He did if for you too.
Friday, November 19, 2010
This change, which I can not share the details of quite yet, will mean a job change for part of the year as well as extra hours from the family. It will mean that we have to stop wasting time and make a schedule that we all can adhere to which is not something we are blessed at doing to be honest. This change has all of my feelings of protection and that momma bear wanting to keep her young close to her up and ready to pounce.
Yet, with all that being said, I see in my man a glimmer in his eye. I see a spark of excitement which I want to honor. So as the wife, I want to move forward and see what God can do using my man in this life change. As the mom, I want to grab him and smack him! LOL! Not really! I just want to make sure that what the girls have now, an active Daddy, will always be true regardless of life changes. So, for those of you who know us personally, please pray for us over the next few months. When I feel I can share more details, I will. Until then, we just need prayers to make sure we are doing what God wants for our family and not what we desire. I also want to be open to the walk God has for me and not put brakes on something that would be His will. I have full faith that God is good and more than able to make all this come out for good. I just want to make sure it is His will first! Oh, now look what I've done...I've gotten all worked up about this issue again! Better go pray through it again!
Thursday, November 18, 2010
However, this week, God used a student at our co-op to reach out to me and grab hold of my heart. This has been a very stressful and emotional week as the Teaching Day Coordinator at our co-op. We have had a lot of decisions to make about some touchy issues. I will not go into the details but trust me to know that I am not good at confrontation and God is stretching me. So when I got on my Facebook account this afternoon I had the following post on my wall:
Friday, November 5, 2010
Sunday, October 31, 2010
I love fall in Indiana! It is probably my favorite season, but I am one of those weird women who enjoys all four seasons. So while I adore fall colors, raking leaves and crunching through them with my girls, one thing I do not enjoy about this season is the inevitable discussion on halloween. I have found over the years that fellow Christians are the most opinionated about this topic and are not afraid to speak up if they are doing something you don't or vice versa. I love how some of my friends have tackled this day in their homes. One friend has renamed it calling it "HallowHim" and hosts a festival for her children's friends at their home. They do dress up but with no scary outfits. They play Christian music, have a dvd playing, games, candy. All to grab back a night that was intended for evil.
We choose to not participate in the halloween typical festivities for various reasons which are between us and God, however, I can tell you this...a long time ago, a dear friend of mine and I were discussing the fact that we did not want to keep taking away these childhood activities without replacing it with something equally fun for the kids. We feared our kids would resent that one day. Putting our heads together, we came up with the heart behind Halloween was greed..."how much candy can I get" or at least it was for us as kids. So the opposite heart would be to give. So we brainstormed ways to give on this day. What we came up with was renamed "Dress up Cookie Night" by the kids. The kids all help us bake cookies the week up to halloween and we put them in baggies with a scripture greeting on the baggie. We let the kids dress up in outfits we have in our own dress up boxes before heading to the area nursing homes. We pass out cookies to the tenants who are forgotten much of the year. So what was intended to focus on getting and on children, we managed to flip for just the opposite...focus on the elderly getting. Our kids love this tradition! They can't wait for it and plan their outfits well in advance each year even at the ages they are now.
I guess I am posting this not to shine a spotlight on our family's tradition but on the fact, as Christians, we have choices. Each family has to decide how they want to handle these days. That decision should be between them and God and not be based on feeling inadequate, judged or pressured into doing it the way another family does. If we make sisters and brothers in Christ feel judged, how in the world do we think we make the non-Christians feel? One thing I know for sure, no matter how you decide to handle this day, this day will never be won back for Christ as long as we are judging others way of celebrating it or not.
P.S. We started this in 2002 before digital cameras entered our home...I am so trying to figure out a way to upload those precious pictures as they are just way too cute!
Thursday, October 28, 2010
After getting going though, I do find I am a more focused momma and a softer spoken one as well. So far, week two, no weight loss...sad reality to my female issues...I just don't lose weight easily...however, that will not deter my working to be making healthier choices. I believe if I keep going, God will bless my efforts with the weight coming off but as of yet, not so much, which some days makes me so frustrated. Regardless, I am praying that I can be diligent in these new plans and that in a few months, I will be able to write that I have a new habit set....now I need to get off here and get busy!!!
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
This is one of my favorite pictures of Bean at age 4. Way too fun!
So, in honor of the way God chose to bring our family together, we do celebrate Adoption Day with our girls. We allow them to choose what they want to do, within reason. Some years we go ice skating, some years it is a movie, some it is play at a park with a couple friends. Whatever they decide, we always do it with all four of us together since that is what this day really celebrates....the day we all became "The Miller's". I am not sure what Bean has decided she wants to do and we do have school, dance to contend with but I am sure whatever it is, it will be fun! I am so thankful for being given the gift of this child in my life and the honor of being her mommy...forever! What a precious honor! :) Love ya, Bean! Happy Adoption Day!
This is another favorite after she lost her first tooth. Look at those curls! :)
Monday, October 25, 2010
Both of these couples have since moved away. One is within an hour and the other is two hours away. Yet that does not stop the phone calls, texts, emails from coming. These couples will remain our strong faith friends as we walk through life. They know our hearts. They share our pain. They know our joys. We know theirs and share in them with them. Distance has not taken away that feeling of sharing life together and what a joy to know that is true. True, it is not the same as when we all lived so close together, yet it is sweeter now because now there are years of life shared and with that comes wisdom and comfort.
We just spent the day with one of the families mentioned above yesterday. The couple who we thought had no children. We later found out they not only had a child, but that he was with the Lord now. The pain of watching them struggle to conceive again and carry a baby to term was truly painful to walk through with them, yet yesterday as I sat by and watched their now 6 year old daughter be baptized, well, tears of joy! I remember being at the hospital holding her and her little sister and now they are the ages of my girls when we started this group.
What a blessing to have been given this group years ago. Little did I know then, that these couples would be in our life forever. I am so grateful that God lead each of us to that small group and that we all stayed and did not let first impressions give way to letting God move. :) Love ya guys!
Sunday, October 17, 2010
After hiking there for two days, they moved their camp to Grand Canyon. They camped on the north rim the first night.
The next day, they awoke early (4AM) and headed out for their big adventure. Thirteen of the fifteen headed down into the canyon while two of the guys took down the camp and moved it to the south rim where the men would join them later that night.
The men all finished their jaunt and without great injury. Sure they had some blisters, chaffing, sore legs but no one had to be taken away on a stretcher! I know for Matt this was a great goal he had set before him and to see it completed was very fulfilling. While they all finished, no injuries and great times by all, they all have said they would never do that again! It was the toughest thing they have ever done.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Doodle showing off her new Bible and digging into it the next morning.
The best part of this weekend had to be the date with Daddy. We packed up and headed out to meet our guy. True to character, Matt was standing by the restaraunt of our choice with a single rose for his girl. He looked so sweet and maybe a bit scared. I think they both worried that now that she knew all about those "yucky" boys, she would somehow feel odd around Daddy or that for her Daddy would treat her differently. I think all were relieved to see that it was just the same. :)
Doodle and Daddy on our special date.
At our dinner, we discussed the plans we have chosen for our girls when it comes to dating and such with Doodle and listened to her great ideas and heart on the same topics. I am thrilled to see that she has such a great heart on this topic and knows which friends are going to help her keep this goal of purity. I am just thankful that my girl has set a great plan in motion, respects our guidelines and desires to seek after God's plan for dating and marriage. I am also a tad bit biased, but I think her date was just too stinkin' cute! :)