Monday, December 1, 2014

Tennessee Fun

 At mamas we did lots of fun things.  Of course just visiting and getting stories from mamas childhood was great.  And there was the tree decorating that I already told you about.

Here are a few more things we did.  Uncle Johnny had this great 4 - Wheeler.  At first Avery was a bit skiddish.  I kinda didnt think she was going to get on the thing.  But she braved it up.  And she had fun.

It took a little time but once she got brave enough to hold on to the steering wheel she basically took over.



This is me with mom and my brother Johnny.  Yes he's a wild one.  He should have his own TLC reality show.


We made cookies too.  Mmmmmmm

We also did not let the remainder of the cranberries leftover from the garland go to waste.  Oh No, my mom does NOT waste stuff!  So she found a recipe and we made this yummy double yummy cranberry orange bread.




We took lots of pictures.  And we straightened Averys hair.

We spent glorious time together loving on each other.  I love these guys more than my words can express.






Avery got to play a bit with Bogie.  It would have been a lot if Bogie would have cooperated.  He stays clear of her as much as possible.  Poor Avery.  But she did get to give him plenty of treats and play a bit with him.

We colored with Grandmas fancy colored pencils in her special books and in the book that Grandma bought for Avery.

Avery may or may not be getting a special book of her own at Christmas.  Just sayin.

We had a great couple of days at Grandmas.  I am so glad we went and very thankful.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

To Grandmothers House We Go

 So THANKFUL I got to go see my mom this week.  Casey, Avery, and I went on a road trip and headed up there to see her. Avery did super great.   It was a very nice trip.  We did fine without our guys who had to work.    When we got there one of us mentioned a Christmas Tree.  Johnny (thats my brother) said he had one but Mama usually only wanted to put up her little tree.  He and I discussed where we could fit it and how we could decorate it.  The decision was made.  We knew she would like it when we were finished.  So Johnny put it together, and we hung the lights.  


All the while mom thinking it was much too big.

 Then candy canes were  hung.


Then Christmas Balls

So cool making memories with Avery and her Great Grandmother.  And Nonna of course.

Then we popped pop corn and strung it together with cranberries for an old fashioned garland.
 It was so fun.

We were proud of it.


 Johnny added an angel and then we draped the garland around the tree for our finishing touch.

 Mom did like it.  We were right.


Even though it was a little early maybe to get the tree up, it was the perfect time for us since we were all together.  No time like the present to take the opportunity you are given.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

This Is What It's All About

This is what its all about folks

This Children's Neighborhood Outreach

Once a month we go to their neighborhood and play with them.  We always play Soccer or Flag Football.


While they do that, some others have their nails painted, or paint ours.  Then there is another activity like decorating crosses


or making turkeys like we did this time.  Or face painting which they love.
There is always some group game like a relay race of some sort, sinking the ping pong ball,



or catching marshmallows with your face like last month.  This time we had a three legged race.  We always have hula hoops


and frisbees, stuff like that.  After that all the kids sit down by this old truck



 and Todd teaches a short Bible lesson while they have a snack.  After that they get a treat bag and we are on our way.

This month was a little different though.

This month our church decided to invite the children and their parents to have Thanksgiving Dinner with us.  So all of the great people at Cornerstone Church got together, made yummy dishes, gathered together tables, chairs, plates, cups, drinks, dishes, sound equipment, microphones, game supplies, and all the other things we needed and went out again to their neighborhood to celebrate Thanksgiving with our new friends.  We set up those tables right outside.  Right in the place where they normally play soccer.






  It was great.  It was cold.  But honestly we prayed the really cold away.  It was suppose to be frigid cold.  And it was the day before and the day after too I think.  But the sun was out and the temperature was up a little,  and it turned out fine.  More than fine actually.  It was amazing.  I was blessed to no end.  It was so great to see so many come out to help with this.  There were even others who helped prior to Saturday that couldnt be there that day but did things that needed to be done before then.  I looked around and saw all of the kids, all their parents, and all of our church family there together.  I loved it.  It was great.

Some memories from the day

  • The little boy who straight up told me his daddy was in jail
  • The little girl who kept wanting me to take her picture.

  • The little boy who was so sad that his mama wouldnt come to eat with him but seemed very happy that I told him I would be his buddy and he could stay by me.
  • The girl who was happy to see her daddy come

  • Singing Happy Birthday to the birthday girl

  • The sweet lady that brought a dish (yummy potatoes) Our conversation
  • The pile up with me at the bottom when kids in their own version of the three legged race ran right over me.


Overall it was a really great day spending time and building relationships with the precious people in that neighborhood.

This is what its all about folks.


And this is what we saw chasing us as we drove away.

Monday, November 17, 2014

A Little of Peru Right Here

Since we returned from Peru we have done a Neighborhood Children's Outreach once a month.  We chose a neighborhood where we go and play games with the children there.  We bring a snack and have a little bible lesson with them before we leave. Very similar to one of the things we did in Peru.   It has grown since our fist visit.  We are so blessed by it each time.  This time in particular I was moved almost to tears by the blessing of it all.

This month we did something a little different.  I will share more about that in the next few posts because it would have been major picture overload if I had done it all in one post.  Therefore, I am splitting it up.

Each month I have intended to bring my camera to get some images of these precious faces and the things we do out there.  Each time I have forgotten my camera.  Last month I finally remembered it.  However, the battery died just as I turned it on.  Finally this month I remembered my fully charged camera.  I got some great images.

As I was there with the kids taking pictures, in my minds eye I kept going back to the place that sorta began this in the first place.  Peru.

When we got home from Peru we knew that we wanted to incorporate some of what we had done in Peru with the children there, and bring it to children here.  That is where this Neighborhood Children's Outreach was born.  The precious Peruvian children touched our hearts.  We were incredibly blessed by spending time with the children there and sharing our love and Gods love with them.  That is our intent here as well with precious children in our own town.

As I looked at each little face I saw a child that deserved to be loved well.


I saw a child that deserved to be played with




 and made to feel important.



I saw a child that deserved to know they are special








and deserved to be hugged.



This weekend these smiling faces made me smile too.








They made Todd smile too.

The next post I will have more pictures from the weekend event and will go into more detail of what we did.