Saturday, June 28, 2008

I Can Only Imagine

I'm sure we've all heard this song by now. It's beautiful. It causes you to stop and think of the reality of standing face to face to our Lord and to wonder what it will be like.

For me, one of the hard things after Robbie went to heaven was just that. Imagining. I wanted to imagine him and his daily activities. When I closed my eyes, I wanted to be able to see him in my mind. But I couldn't do it. I could not even imagine. I had no idea what he was doing. Truthfully, I had peace that he was safe and free and with the Lord. But I couldn't imagine anything further.

Was he playing with other children? Was he sitting on Jesus' knee? Was he picking fruit off the trees? Was he quoting his ABCs to my grandfather? Was he busy? Did he have work to do? Is he a player in this whole spiritual world that we live in -- helping the angels accomplish a mission? I do not know.

So, once again, this is where trust comes in. I trust the Lord. I trust His character, and I trust His promises. I do not know what all of that includes. The Bible does not give us all the details. But I do know that it is good.

John 14:1-3 "Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also."

As I was wrestling with this issue one day, I began to understand that if I could truly imagine it -- if I could picture in my earthly mind what heaven and my Robbie's new life there entailed -- it really would not be heaven, would it? Our earthly minds and senses are limited. We cannot even begin to understand or comprehend the heavenly things.

I Cor. 2:9 "Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, the things which God has prepared for them who love Him."

So what does that mean? It means I have to be patient. Arghh!!! I will one day see with my own eyes and hear with my own ears those wonderful things that God has prepared for His children. Robbie just got a head start.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Summer Memories

I hope everyone is enjoying their summer. We sure are! Summers as a working adult just aren't the same as they were growing up. With a school schedule, summers were the ultimate 3-month vacation. Growing up, I remember loving the summers and spending most of the days poolside.

But now we're adults, and life goes on. Summers involve the same hectic schedule but with a bunch of heat and humidity added in. The beginning of June, our weather was miserably hot. Temperatures stayed around 100.

As we all know, children grow up way too fast. Sometimes I realize that Eveley has moved into a new stage and I didn't even notice. I don't want to waste any of it. So this past week I've been trying to find things that she would enjoy doing and let her begin making summer memories. (Well, at least she can look back on the pictures!)

With the heat, Eveley and I couldn't even go on our back deck so we stayed inside and tried to find something to do. Miss Priss was very creative.

She found new messes to get into.

She's learning to play the piano -- but only if Elmo can watch.

She's helping me cook dinner. Well, actually, she keeps stealing the vegetables. Seriously, Ev loves her veggies. I'm not sure I've ever seen a child like her. For a meal, she will eat a whole can (small can) of peas, vegetable soup, spinach, avocado, or any other veggie I feed her. On this day, she was sampling squash. And, yes, she liked it too (after I cooked it)!

Ev loves talking on the phone. It's pretty funny. She'll walk around the house yapping, making absolutely no sense. (Wonder where she learned that...?) We will call Daddy at work once a day and let Ev talk to him. She laughs and tells him about her day. I've got to get that on video soon.

So, we were able to have fun inside and escape the heat. But then a wonderful new weather pattern moved in. It's been simply gorgeous this past week, and we're trying to take advantage of it lest it abandons us soon!

Last Saturday, we all went to a nearby town center to spend the afternoon. Ev loves being outside and, to top it off, she got a balloon! (or, ba-boon, as she call it).

Ev loves it when our neighbor's dog, Yogi, comes over to play. Robbie loved Yogi too!

And yesterday, we got to play outside with our neighbors. They set up the slip & slide and Ev got a tan.

I think we're well on our way to creating some fun, summer memories. (Wait, I just realized summer hasn't even started yet. Oh well. We got a head start!)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day

I am so thankful for my husband and the father he is to our children. I remember when I told him that I was pregnant with Robbie. His eyes got real big and you could see his mind rapidly sorting through all of the logistics of being a dad. He was pretty overwhelmed.

Then Robbie was born, and he was forever changed! From that moment, Bob made his family his first priority. Being an attorney, Bob's schedule was long and stressful. But he made sure that he seldom (very seldom) worked weekends and was home in the evenings with time to spend with Robbie before bedtime.

Those two had tons of fun together - shopping for hats for their big heads, and riding bikes!

I believe this was a gift from God. Bob will tell you himself that this did not come naturally. He is a very driven and ambitious person. And to purposefully stop work early or put off work on the weekends was not something that would have come easily to him. But, I feel, the Lord was preparing Bob (and me) to live a life completely committed to Robbie -- holding nothing back, reserving nothing for the future -- so we would have no regrets.

Bob loves his little princess Eveley too. There's no denying her genes. I call her Bob's twin daughter. Robbie looked like my side of the family. Eveley is all her daddy! She has stolen a piece of his heart!

I am also very thankful for my dad. He's the best! If you asked my siblings how they would describe him, I think they would all say - fun! Dad is tons of fun.

He loved to take us on "Papa's picnics" on Saturdays where we would drive to some "secret" location to explore. But they all ended up with a fun treat - dinner or ice cream. And I'll never forget the money tree when I was in junior high. I had gone through a major growth spurt. Over the summer, I had gone from a little, petite squirt to a gangly 5'8" junior higher. I went to a private school with dress code restrictions and had nothing to wear. (We did not wear uniforms which would have made things much simpler.) As I would complain about my situation, my dad would say, "Honey, money doesn't grow on trees. You'll have to pray about it." One day, I came home from school. As I walked to the front door, I noticed that the Japanese Maple had 3 $100 bills hanging from it. That was a gift from my dad so I could go buy clothes for school. I know it was a huge sacrifice but he gladly made it for his daughter's needs (and wants). He has done that for years.

I love the men in my life! Happy Father's Day

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Visit with Family

My mom and yougest brother and sister came to visit us this week. We had a great time together, and Eveley showed them all of her tricks.

My sister Carrianna had just returned from a medical missions trip to Togo, Africa and brought Eveley this cute African dress. She looked adorable in it!

I cooked dinner the first night (a delicious Southern Living chicken and rice casserole) and "let" my mom do the honors the second night. There's nothing better than fried okra, squash and onions, and fresh broccoli from the garden. Yummy!!

The next day, I took them to a local Mexican restaurant to sample my favorite food (see post below), and it did not disappoint.

We kept very busy as we are getting ready to reveal a pretty big business venture. Shh... it's a secret for now!

We missed the rest of the family and wished they were here!!

Hope everyone is having a nice summer. If you are ever passing through, please come by and visit!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

A Little About Myself

Not that I haven't shared enough personal info on this blog, but my friend Clare has tagged me. For those of us new to the blogging world, this is a way for us to get to know eachother a little better. So, here goes:

Favorite person (outside of family): No way am I going to answer this one.

Favorite food? Umm. Just thinking of the answers to this question has me starving. Remember, I'm in my 2nd trimester. But, for the moment, my favorite food is Mexican. There is a restaurant in our city that has my number. I order this dish called the "Special Michoacan." It's some type of chicken quesadilla with sauteed veggies and I just love it. Of course, it's covered with the white cheese dip too.

Quirks about you? I have an efficiency OCD. I can't explain it. But, trust me, it's serious. I am always playing games in my head to find the best/quickest way to do everything -- from walking through the house, to making trips into town. My mind is playing one huge, continuous game of Tetris.

How would the person who loves you the most describe you in ten words or less? I think he should comment on here and give me his answer. But, I know one of the words would be "Crazy".

Favorite charity or cause? I really have a heart for crisis pregnancy centers. There are so many families longing to have children, and I think society has lied to women for years.

Favorite blog recently? To be honest, I have been so busy lately that I've hardly had time to read many blogs at all. I try to keep up with my local friends' blogs and am in the process of designing a blog for my mother (more about that later!).

Something you cannot get enough of? Rubbin's (That's what I call back massages as I ask my husband every night, in a very high-pitched, desperate, little girl voice, "Can I please have some rubbins?")

Worst job you ever had? I liked my college jobs - waitress, department store clerk, secretary. But my first job out of law school was a prosecutor prosecuting prostitutes! Yes, that's right. My job was to put the hookers and their customers in jail. The worst parts were dealing with those prostitutes whose gender was "undetermined" and with the wives and families of the "Johns". Not something a Christian, Southern belle was used to doing!

What job would you pay NOT to have? Probably a vet. With the exception of dogs, I really do not like fooling with animals. Sorry.

If you could be a fly on the wall, where? Anywhere! I am a very curious person and love to eavesdrop! (I know that's terrible....)

Favorite Bible verse right now? Wow. How much time do you have? I think my favorite verse right now is John 16:33 Jesus said, "I have told you these things so that you may have peace. In this world, you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world."

Guilty pleasure? Long hot baths with a book or magazine and shopping.

Got any confessions? I am addicted to Jimmy Dean frozen sausage biscuits right now!

If you had to spend $1000 on yourself, how would you spend it? Spa day with my mom and sisters. Now that we're all "adults," we don't get to see eachother that often. I miss them!

Favorite thing about your house? I love all of the moulding and our back deck. It is completely enclosed so I can let Eveley play out there. It's like a giant play pen.

Least favorite thing about your house? It is 3 levels. I like to be organized but it's hard keeping things that we'll need on each floor of the house. And doing laundry is a complete pain!

One thing you are bad at? Directions! I can get lost pulling out of my driveway. Thank goodness, for my birthday, my hubby got me a Garmin navigation system. It has helped tremendously!

One thing you are good at? Multitasking. I work full time as an attorney. And there are many days where I am on a conference call, nursing a baby, typing an email, and watching TLC at the same time!! Glad my boss doesn't read this!

If you could change one thing about your circumstances, what? If you've been reading this blog for any time at all, you already know the answer to this question. I would have my Robbie back with me!

Who would you like to meet someday? MaryBeth Chapman

What makes you feel sexy? A tan and a skinny body!

Who is your real life hero? My parents! They both have shown me unconditional love, selflessness, and a true love for and dependence on our Lord.

What is the hardest part of your job? Balancing being a good wife, mother, friend, and attorney.

When are you most relaxed? When Eveley is asleep!

What stresses you out? messes and disorganization

What can you not live without? For convenience sake, my computer.

Why do you blog? to preserve all of the memories and to decompress. I really have enjoyed penning my thoughts. It has helped me work through some things and focus on the important things.

Who are you tagging?
New/newer bloggers-April

1. Answer the questions.
2. Link back to who tagged you.
3. Tag other bloggers to do the same.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

1st Birthday Memories - Part 2

As Robbie's 1st birthday was approaching, I wrestled with whether to throw an official birthday party. He was only turning 1. There would be many other years to do the party thing. Well, needless to say, I'm glad that we decided to go ahead and do it.

Robbie's two buddies, Parker and Zach, came over to celebrate. We grilled hamburgers and let the boys play. Of course, I had not planned many "birthday games" for these boys. I mean, what do you do with three 1-year-old boys? They had ideas of their own and it was perfect. I keep a cabinet full of plastic and tupperware to provide a much needed diversion for the kids while I'm cooking. Robbie introduced Parker and Zach to the cabinet and that was all we needed. They played in (literally) the cabinet for a long time. These boys were our first born and only children, so we just sat around watching them and enjoying their laughter.

I presented Robbie with a big piece of funfetti cake with cream cheese icing.

The boys all enjoyed their cake.

Robbie actually didn't eat any cake. He just ate the strawberries and licked off all the icing.

Here's a helpful tip: if you're going to open presents, do this before the cake!

After the cake, Robbie had icing in ever crevice and roll! My sister Kate was living with us that summer. So, she took Robbie upstairs to have a quick bath. He came down in his bathrobe with his name on it (a gift from our friends) to open presents. He looked very Hugh Hefner-ish. (Just joking!)

We got Robbie this little car/push toy, some books, and CDs. He loved his music!

It was a perfect day!

Monday, June 2, 2008

1st Birthday Memories - Part 1

I mentioned last week that I wanted to post about Robbie's prior birthdays so we can preserve all of these memories.

Robbie was our first born and the first grandchild on both sides. We began his 1st birthday celebration in Tennesse where my parents live. As I've mentioned before, Robbie loved being outside. So, we all went to a beautiful park in Chattanooga where Robbie got to run free, open presents, eat his M&M birthday cake (my childhood favorite) and splash in the water with his Dadoo. It was a beautiful day!