Friday, August 8, 2008

No, really, a little less excitement PLEASE!

As you may remember, a few months ago, Ande's work changed how he gets paid. The changes, coupled with a lack of overtime, have resulted in Ande's pay being reduced by around $250 or more each week. That doesn't sound too horrible, until you start adding it up - that's around $1000/month, or $12,000/year. YIKES!!

This morning, I was crunching the numbers on our (estimated) income for the remainder of the year. From what I can see, if we ONLY spend money on bills - NO going out to eat, NO birthday/Christmas gifts for ANYONE, NO extra ANYTHING...we'll be in the hole at the end of the year. If we had one more month's worth of income without having one more month of bills, we would be only slightly better off. Of course, that's not reality. Now, granted, I only estimated how much Ande will make over the next few months, so we may not be in as bad of shape as it looks right now. I tried to be prudent with my numbers, hopefully I went low and we'll at least break even. (Prayin' for some overtime!!)

So, I was telling Ande about it during his lunch break today, and he said, "Remember when Emily (our niece) died?" "Remember how that all worked out and it was so exciting?"

For those of you who don't know, my brother in law and his wife (the ones who visited recently with their 2 daughters) lost a daughter to premature birth in 2004. Of course, Ande and I were heartbroken for Ben & Tracy, but there was no way we were going to be able to afford to fly to California for Emily's funeral. I had let our church family know about Emily's birth so that they could pray for Ben and Tracy (as well as the rest of the family). Little did we know what God had planned.

God had laid it heavy on our pastor's family to help in any way they could, and through a series of events that I still can ONLY attribute to God's grace, we were able to attend the funeral. There are, of course, a lot more details, but hopefully you get the jist. We had a need, and God worked through our church family to provide it. It was (and still is) a very exciting thing for us to share with others.

You know, it's fitting that I share this story now...Emily would have been four years old on Thursday, September 11. I can't wait to get to meet her in heaven someday!

Anyway, Ande was reminding me of how exciting it was to watch God work through various people during that time to provide something that was so very generous and truly appreciated. Ande told me, "I'm excited to see how God works this out!" He's very much an optimist.

I, on the other hand, could use a little less excitement in my life!! I'm a worrier by nature. Even though I KNOW IN MY HEART that God will provide for us...I just can hardly stand wondering and waiting to see HOW. Not only am I a worrier, but an IMPATIENT worrier at that! It's silly and stupid.

God has blessed me with an amazing family, and I am constantly humbled by His mercy and grace. I really shouldn't want for anything more, should I? Could you all pray for me that I would be able to let go of this situation and just be a good steward of what we have? Thanks!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


That's how many visits I've had to my site since I installed a counter.

6 3 0 0

That's quite a few. Okay, well for me anyway! So how come I only get 4 or 5 comments (if I'm lucky) on my posts?? I LOVE getting comments!! Really! It sorta makes my day.

So kindly leave a comment, would you? If you do, I PROMISE I will come to your blog and leave one in return!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Puckey Loves Her Lips!

Well, I'm not quite sure what kind of look she was going for....maybe

Lisa Simpson?

Amos Lee?

Angelina Jolie??

Ande said she looked like a Muppet.


Whoever she was trying to look like, it just wasn't working for her.

Okay, no more papparazzi!!

At Bubber's baseball game last Wednesday, poor little Puckey got stung by a bee. On her LIP. She was playing with some of the other little brothers & sisters who were at the game, and all of the sudden she started SCREAMING her head off. I ran over to see what happened, and one of the kids said she thought maybe Puckey fell down. When I asked Puckey if she fell, she wailed, "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooooooooooo!" I asked her what happened, and she said, "A bee stung me!" Now, other than me warning her about staying away from bees, Puckey has had no real education about bees, so I wasn't sure if that's what happened. Until I saw her lip. It had already started swelling.

She cried for a few minutes, and refused to let me put ice on her lip. I started packing up, and Puckey "recovered" enough for her to want to stay to watch her Bubber play. We stayed a few more minutes, but the longer we sat, the worse her lip looked. I called Ande and asked him to meet me at his parents' house with some benadryl & ibuprofen. Once she got the medicine in her system, her lip slowly started to shrink down. But it was still pretty fat.

Not really a big deal, since she was otherwise fine, right? Well, not exactly. You see, I had scheduled an appointment for Puckey, The Jib, and their out of town cousins to get some pictures taken together for Thursday. (The next day)

I wondered whether or not her lip would be better for the pictures...

On Thursday her lip was only a little bit swollen (much to my relief), so we decided to go ahead with the pictures. Later that afternoon, I met my mother in law, sister in law, and two nieces at the studio for the pictures.

I should have known when our appointment was schedule for 3:00pm and the photographer didn't get there until 5 minutes later that it wasn't going to go well. The photographer was not particularly professional, but our girls are all generally pretty happy, so I thought it would be okay.


We struggled for over an hour to get some decent shots. We got some "okay" ones of each of the girls, and some with each set of sisters together, and were working on a shot with all four of them. Things were not going well at this point. All of the girls were very squirmy and not wanting to cooperate.

That's when I noticed the computer screen displaying an error message. I pointed it out to the photographer, and she said, "That's weird." She changed out the memory card in the camera, and the same message still showed. Then she took the original memory card and left the room. About a minute later, she came back and told us that all of the pictures were gone.


Needless to say, we weren't particularly thrilled about that news, but what can you do? The photographer asked if we could come back in the morning. Fortunately, my brother & sister in law weren't leaving until Saturday, so we said we could. She set up the appointment, and told me she'd call later to confirm.

When we got home late Thursday night, there was a message on our machine that the camera at that studio was broken, so the photographer scheduled an appointment for us at a different studio for Friday.

Let me tell you - in the future, if I use the same company for pictures, I will go to this other studio! The photographer was much more friendly, and she worked hard at getting all the girls' names right so she could call them by name! She also was a little more creative with the backgrounds and a lot more fun to work with. This time, the girls were all CHAMPS at getting their pictures taken!!

Here's some of the results....

The Jib
How often do you get 2 two year olds AND 2 one year olds to pose so sweetly?
I love this picture! Look at Monkey's face (top left) - PRICELESS!!
So thanks, Ben & Tracy, for the memories! We LITERALLY couldn't have done it without you! I hope we get to create many more like this in the (VERY NEAR) future!!! (And on OUR dime next time!!)