Thursday, November 29, 2007

Wonderful, delightful, beautiful, gorgeous Christmas music

mws banner

Well...my free copy of this CD came earlier this week and I have one word for you......

B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L

It is just beautiful. If you are looking for a new Christmas CD, then go out and get this beautiful one. It stirred my heart, calmed me, excited me, made me love my Jesus deeply through this music. Excellent job Michael W. Smith and all your very talented musical folks!


Again, its beautiful and it will bless you to death this Christmas! Now, get to Lifeway!
Merry Christmas everyone~
Fran

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Bethlehem bound.......

Our pastor read this to us in our staff meeting today and I made a copy so I could post it. I pray you have room for Him every minute of every day in all things you do this wonderful Advent season. I am completely in awe of Him and thankful for His love for me. I praise Him today because He is truly everything.

In Search of our Kneeling Places


In each heart lies a Bethlehem, an inn where we must ultimately answer whether there is room or not.


When we are Bethlehem-bound we experience our own advent in his.


When we are Bethlehem-bound we can no longer look the other way conveniently not seeing the stars not hearing angel voices.


We can no longer excuse ourselves by busily tending our sheep or our kingdoms.


This Advent, let’s go to Bethlehem and this thing that the Lord has made known to us.


In the midst of shopping sprees, let’s ponder in our hearts the Gift of Gifts.


Through the tinsel, let’s look for the gold of the Christmas star.


In the excitement and confusion, in the merry chaos, let’s listen for the brush of angels’ wings.


This Advent, let’s go to Bethlehem and find our kneeling places.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Who are you???

Go ahead...get the tune of the song from the late 70's by "The Who" in your head..."Whoooooooo are you? Who Who Who Who????" That's all I'm singing after I titled this!!! Ok...moving on.

Not one picture from our Thanksgiving so I'll be moving on from that too! I know you are highly disappointed. I do believe we had close to 100 people at my in-laws. CRAZY!

After spending ALL of November in "gratitude mode," I have seriously thought about what to say each time I write in this journal/blog....Since its still November, I'm sticking with the theme of gratitude and thankfullness even as we transition from Thanksgiving to Christmas!

This is my most favorite time of the year! If it weren't for the birth of that precious baby...we would all be completely lost....and that just scares me to death, makes me sad, but completely fills my heart with love for God who sent His son to dwell among us! He came to have a relationship with piddly ole me!

So, I sit here on Sunday evening with my family and ask myself a very important question. A BIG, BIG question. I am trying to think of all the times in social settings with family, friends, and even strangers and you hear people ask...."Now, who are you?? What do you do??"

Isn't that interesting that we want to "label" people based on who they are married to, where they work, where their kids go to school, who their friends are, what church they go to, their stuff, etc. I don't think we mean to do anything with this information other than putting them in our mind with a bunch of adjectives that help us remember who they are. At least I hope we don't do anything else with that information. I hope we don't judge or criticize people based on these adjectives. But wait! We sure can, can't we??? The world wants to label us and put us in boxes and thats fine as long as I'm in the Jesus box! :)

So, Fran, "who are you? What do you do??" Hmmmm.....what do I want my label to be first and foremost in the minds of others? And, how I rattle off the answer to the question...does that mean anything?? Why don't I name "I'm a child of God" first and foremost?? Because I'll just get it out there in the open.....it is not the 1st thing I say. And to be honest, I may not say it all. And you know what??? If there is not an opportunity to say, "I'm a child of God," then I hope my words....conversations, not talking about others, keeping my mouth shut when needed......along with my actions, speak volumes about "who I am."

Deuteronomy 7:6 says this, "For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession."

DON'T YOU LOVE THAT VERSE???!!!! You, me, all of us, are His treasured possession. Now, that is precious.

I am His.

That is who I am.

I belong to Jesus. It's not about anything else other than being His, FIRST!

I hope, daily, I can share something about Jesus to someone. If I do not have that opportunity to do so, I hope through my words and actions, people will know Who I belong to.

So...."Who are you? What do you do?"

My heart is busting with gratitude for Jesus. I love what He's done for me. Everything and everyone else will fall into its proper place when I put Him first. I hope you are confident in who you are and whose you are. Spend some time with Him daily. He'll knock your socks off when you do. And...I want to be blown away!

I'm many things to many people. But, I am His treasured possession. Always. No matter what I do to mess things up. That makes me grateful. It makes me love Him more. Being His treasured possession is an amazing thought.

Do you know who you are today?? You, being in Christ, are His treasured possession. Embrace Him. Embrace that truth and promise.

"Thank you Jesus for loving me, for treasuring me. Help me to shine ever so brightly for you this week. Help me to be a light that will bring others closer to You."

Lots of love, friends~
Thank you Joanne for the scripture out of Deuteronomy that I saw on your site. :)

Friday, November 23, 2007

Just had to......

Glitterized by flmnetwork.com

Y'all, in case you didn't hear....my home state Arkansas Razorbacks upset the NUMERO UNO LSU Tigers tonight in about 400 overtimes. It was thrilling, exhausting, and made me wanna dance!

Wooooooooo Pig Soooooooie......Razorbacks!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007




Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your families!! Gratitude is a word that has taken on new meaning for me this year.

Psalm 136 says, "Give thanks to the LORD for He is good. His love endures forever."

Blessings to everyone~
Fran

Monday, November 19, 2007

SEC football and God go together!!

Yes. You read that correctly! SEC football...specifically a UT football weekend and Jesus were in the same spot Saturday afternoon. Together with 105,000 people, I saw some FANTASTIC, THRILLING, DOWN TO THE WIRE FOOTBALL, and some GREAT BIG JESUS. God will go anywhere won't He?? It's just a matter of having our "eyes on" and seeing Him everywhere. I shall start from the beginning of our family adventure Friday afternoon as we made the trip across the state of Tennessee. I got the kids early from school on Friday and you would have thought we were going to Disney World! They were a little EXCITED to say the least! It's fun to see them get happy over adventures. They never get "non-excited." At what age do you stop getting up early because the trip is today or you quit acting goofy and silly because the trip is today??!! Lord, I don't want to grow up.

Ok, we traveled all afternoon to Knoxville and stopped off at Texas Roadhouse to eat just as soon as we got into town. A fun restaurant it is. There were several birthdays that night and everytime they wish the person a "happy birthday" they say "YEE-HAW!" Well, that's just fun. And, to be able to throw your peanut shells on the floor?! I felt like a total wild child!

Ok, we ate dinner....stuffed to the core. Found our hotel downtown that was just a mile from campus....kids were HIGHLY disappointed that it was dark and we couldn't drive around and see the beauty of UT. Tomorrow was just not soon enough. But, we got checked in and inside the hotel lobby was a big, big, big, gigantic, tv/movie screen that was nothin but ESPN baby! This is boy heaven for my guys. They would have sat there until game time if Momma, the party pooper, wouldn't have made them come to the room!

Ok, lets get to the heart of gameday. We had a glorious breakfast at the hotel and then loaded up and hit the road jack. We got in our wonderful, parking pass lot and then started walking towards the campus. Oh, wait. 1st stop=Starbucks! Ok, mom was ready to go! It was about 10:00am and the tailgaters were all over campus. I mean all over the place. Every restaurant parking lot, every gas station parking lot, every campus parking lot (that is official tailgating I guess) and every open space you could find was some SERIOUS tailgating going on. It's just smellin so good. I just ate a yummy breakfast, but could have easily dived into some hotdogs, hamburgers and chips and dip at this point.

Where is Jesus at this point?? Oh, He's everywhere friends!! The beauty of His creation is among us. The trees were in beautiful form. Take a look at the boys in this gorgeous one....



Ok, here's another one of us as a family. I was the corny mom who said, "Um, kind sir taking the picture, can we face this way so the beautiful trees are in the background?" I always hated it when my mom would do this!! I don't know why.



Ok, so God's glorious creation was just beautifulgorgeousmagnificent this weekend in East TN. LOVE LOVE LOVE IT! There He shows off just how creative His artwork can be each.and.every.Fall. I don't ever tire of the change of seasons.

Well, we walked through the very big parking lot heading toward the biggest stadium in the world and saw some AWESOME tailgating. There was a hummer that had a ginormous flatscreen tv in the back. Ummm...how do you do that?? I'm sorry. I'm not a big high tech tailgater so how do you get cable in a parking lot?? And, how do you get that, biggest flatscreen ever made, into the back of your hummer no less?? Anyway, God was here during tailgate time because there were friendships and fun EVERYWHERE!! I love seeing people together with the people they love and having fun with. God made us for relationship with Him and others. I thanked Him for the people I wish I was tailgating with in that parking lot next to that hummer that I don't have a picture of. But, I have their neighbor....they weren't too shabby either.



Onto the game! We got to this crowd of people and I felt ourselves saying, "Lets act like we know what we are doing here. Let's try to not look like we have no clue whats going on and why all the people are gathering here!" Well, I don't know the official name of what was about to take place, but it was kinda like a parade. The band, cheerleaders, and eventually the coach and team (very cool part) came marching through the campus and eventually marched right into the stadium. So....here they are...the band and my kids "high-fiving" Coach Fulmer. At this point they thought they were "it on a stick!" God was here at this point because I loved the feeling of unity and supporting a team. We are all on His team. I can't imagine what His team looks like from the heavenlies as we cheer, rally, and high-five each other in the name of His team!! Whew. I bet its glorious!





And. Now the game. These next pictures just MAKE ME LAUGH. I think you'll see what mattered to Dylan...eating his chips and dip was first and foremost. And, being there early. Notice that these pix don't have alot of other people in the background. It was all about seeing every aspect of what was going on INSIDE the biggest stadium in the world!!




See, I think this might be our Christmas card...of course, with something very clever to say....



And, now it's time to enter the field. It's time to recognize each Sr. who is graduating. This was their final home game. I wondered..."what is it like in heaven as we enter His presence and shake the nail scarred hand of our coach?" Do the heavenly angels sing and welcome us home?? I can't imagine what they sound like! Do we run through anything special?? Do we get high-fives for a "job well done, good and faithful servant" as we enter in?? I bet we do!



Well, the game was GREAT! UT was losing 95% of the time, but somehow managed to come from behind in the 4th quarter and pull out a V-I-C-T-O-R-Y!! Thank you Patti for praying. Because, it worked! :) We won! We won! We won!! It was a nail biter. I sure didn't want the boys first UT experience to be a loss. And, it wasn't. It was a wonderful win.

Something occured during the game that is also worth noting....we had a father and son behind us. The son was probably 14 or so. The dad was obnoxious. He drove me NUTS! Nothing positive, productive, or encouraging came out of his mouth. Now, I am a competitive human being, but I pray I have the discernment and wisdom to know when to "SHUT UP!" This guy was going on and on about how bad everything and everyone was. The type of dad that is just embarrassing and he needs to keep his mouth closed. I truly felt sorry for his son.

But, in front of us was a very different father and son. This son was severly handicapped and in a wheelchair with so many pieces of medical equipment hanging off it that it made me anxious. This dad was loving on, talking to, making sure his son was warm, cheering with him, clapping his hands for him, stroking his hair, and continually made sure he was warm and covered up. Can I just say it was Jesus with skin on in this father. I have never seen such devotion, love, and attention paid to another human being......during a football game!! I would catch myself just watching them together. Don't you think that is exactly how Jesus is with us??? NEVER EVER taking his arms off us....NEVER EVER taking his eyes of us......cheering us on even when we can't see or understand what is going on right in front of us. That daddy was Jesus with skin on. It was beuatiful y'all. Just beautiful.

I don't want to be that person complaining, criticizing, tearing people down or being thought of as a negative person. I want to be looked at just like I saw that other father being with his son. I bet we all do.

we have so very much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving week. I'm thankful for Jesus in my everyday world. He is in all things that we do. Even at a UT football game. I pray you see Him in ways, places, and people you wouldn't normally be looking for Him.

We had a fabulous weekend. It was some great family time. I am thankful for the precious people God has placed in my life. I love Him for giving me the gift of family and friends. I thank Him, daily, for you. I love you all. Have a blessed Thanksgiving.

1 Chronicles 17:8-12

"O give thanks to the LORD, call on his name, make known his deeds among the people. Sing to him, sing praises to him, tell of all his wonderful works. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice. Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his presence continually. Remember the wonderful works he has done, his miracles....."

Thank you Jesus for Who you are and the great things You do.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

It's all about the meme....

I will first of all say "thank you" to the precious blogging friends who tagged me for this fun little meme about myself....what does that word mean anyway?? I just got tickled because I read this title as "Its all about me." And, it is.

I think it's 7 random things about myself. Well, I've already broken the rules because I didn't post the rules first as I think I'm supposed to and I'm sure that I'll not tag anyone else because honestly....

I just got in from Knoxville, Knox-vegas, Rocky Top Country, East Tennessee, the Great Smokey Mountains....and I'm a little on the sleepy side and my brain is having a hard time focusing....Ok, lets see if I can make sense and try to find 7 random things about myself that aren't the worst things you've ever read!

1. I had a horribly car wreck in college that nearly killed me...or let me say should have killed me, but the good Lord had better plans and wasn't finished with me yet! Thank goodness!!! It was a yucky, yucky time.

2. Since I have all boys in my house....except for the dog and she doesn't watch tv....I will catch myself turning it on ESPN and seeing whats going on in sports world even when the kids aren't around or even home. Like right now...I'm watching the Boston College/Clemson game.....ALONE.....SO VERY SAD. I KNOW.

3. I have a very competitive nature when I am playing anything....this could be a simple game with the kids....I promise I'm not mean....or even a round of basketball outside. I always want to have the last shot and make it! I might have something bigger going on there.

4. If I had more money, I would want to adopt a child or two or three or four. If that is one thing I could do....I would. It breaks my heart to see children from other countries that are hungry or without a family. Its just too much for my heart.

5. I have a very high pain tolerance. No examples here. Just childbirth experience with son #2 that opened my eyes that I can tolerate just about anything.

6. I would have loved to have been a Dr. or nurse in Oncology. I so wish I would have pursued that back in the day. I am very tender hearted toward the suffering.

7. I think nuts in brownies are just wrong. Nothing crunchy should be found in a brownie or even a cookie for that matter. It's just GROSS!

Ok, that is all I can come up with right now. I don't know who to tag so I'll leave that part blank. I have completely loved reading this stuff on y'all. You people are just crazy and cute and funny!

Have a great rest of the weekend. Our Knoxville trip will be the post on Monday! There is so much to say that I'm in "sift mode" right now. I love each of you.
Blessings to all~

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I am SO thankful for Bible study

Y'all...it's Thursday morning and I'm just completely S-A-D!! Bible study is over!

I loved this particular study. I loved the group. I love the accountability. I love what I learned. I love what God showed me. I love how He spoke to me. I feel like we have been side by side for 10 beautiful weeks and now its time for Him to leave and go home. I hate this feeling.

It's OVER and I'm just sad. My group of amazing women and I have spent the last 10 weeks studying the Tabernacle..."A Woman's Heart, God's Dwelling Place" by the beloved Beth Moore.

Who knew the Tabernacle was so profound, so amazing, so beautiful, so meaningful, so full of depth, so full of Jesus, so full of His glory, so inspiring, so full of God's love for His people, so truly HIM!!! God's desire is to dwell with His people.
Oh, that touches me a little differently this morning as I reflect about what I have learned. He wants to dwell with me. ME!

This study has just blown me away. We are the current "house" for Jesus if you are a believer of Jesus. We are the light that should shine BRIGHTLY for the whole world to see. We are to shine BRIGHTLY my friends.

I am a changed human over this study. God has done a number on me and my heart.

I am so thankful for that. I mean truly grateful for our "now" God and His ability to get in there and do a number on each and every one of us. I love Him with all that I have. I thank Him with all that I have. I praise Him today for his perfect Word.

I hope you are in a small group or a Bible study where you can see, feel, study, and know our Most High Father! I pray that you are diligent with your homework and your time spent with Him. I pray that you do so out of complete desperation for MORE JESUS PLEASE!!!

I can't wait for our next study to begin after Christmas! Do you have any favorites that you would like to share as we pray about what to do next?? I'd love to hear what Bible studies have touched your soul.

Have a great day with Jesus!! I will add another workbook to my stack of "finished." My Bible will be in my possession at all times. I am an addict. I am addicted to Him and His Word. Don't you just love it???



Enjoy Him today! And shine brightly for all to see how awesome He is!
Blessings~

Monday, November 12, 2007

It's been 10 years

I have so much to be thankful for on this Monday, November 12th that I hope I can articulate what I have to say and that you will understand my expression of gratitude and love on this day!!!

Psalm 136:1 says, "Give thanks to the LORD for he is good, His love endures forever!"

First of all....HAPPY BIRTHDAY TYLER!!!This is my 2nd born son and he is officially in double digits now....and might as well be driving a car soon because he thinks he's all that!! Something about turning 10 and thinking that 16 is right around the corner!! He is all grown up now.....according to him! I'll not ruin his party by telling him 16 is not as close as he thinks!





The day Tyler was born was N-U-T-S! He could have been born on the highway in Greenville SC because it.was.time! There was no dilly-daddlin around when it came to his arrival. I could not sit my bottom down in the car because this child was "COMING!!!!" It is an experience that I can bring back in my mind like it was yesterday.

When we got to the hospital, I had the slowest wheelchairpusher in the hospital. This boy had to be 14 and could have cared less that a baby was coming. After 2 days (not really), he got me upstairs and the nurse said "ma'am, you are at 9 cm I need you to not push and let me find the Dr." WHATEVER!!! That ain't gonna happen sweet nurse! There is no holding a baby back when they are ready.

By the grace of God and a complete miracle, I quickly got an epidural and within 30 minutes, this precious bundle of a baby boy...broken collar bone and all....arrived!! He was gorgeous! And, my heart grew by leaps and bounds. I now had the 2 most precious children on this planet. His older brother was every bit of 15 1/2 months old and oblivious for a very long time that he had a younger brother.

The next 1-2 years was completely stressful and crazy and nuts and depressing and scary and unsure and exhausting!! But, WAIT.ONE.MINUTE!!! It's time for Jesus to enter the picture!!!!! The heavenlies have to love it when they see a "revelation" about to take place. Because that is what was about to occur.

I had been a Christian for many years, but had no clue that Jesus could be real. When I was thinking I might run away or my husband might run away due to this stress of having 2 very young babies, Jesus came into my life and KNOCKED ME DOWN!!! A family member took me to Bible study for the 1st time and I literally saw 100's of moms who looked just like me....stressed, crazy, nuts, depressed, desperate, scared, unsure, and exhausted. That comforted me for a few minutes. But, then......

They became different people as soon as their Bibles opened and Word and Truth and love was spoken over them by such an anointed, God loving woman. I had no idea what was going on. Did you hear that? I had no idea what they were doing by opening their Bibles and underlining and all. I cracked open the only Bible I had ever known....the King James Version and then began to play along. Ahem. Ya know, act like you know what you are doing. I had no idea where these books of the Bible were found, much less why they were underlining, writing notes, and "amen-ing" every thing this teacher said. I was completely blown away.

From that day on, Jesus took a hold of my heart and mind and I have never turned back. He has become so real to me at times that I swear I felt His presence. I mean truly felt another human there with me. He has moved with such patience in my life that I just don't see how He doesn't throw His precious, loving arms up in the air and say, "she just isn't getting it!" But, He doesn't. He keeps on and keeps on and keeps on. We have been in such beautiful, forward motion, there is absolutely no going back to a life without a very real Jesus.

So, ya see. The birth of my 2nd son is significant for me. If he and his older brother wouldn't have been so close in age, I would not have encountered Jesus at the time I did. And, maybe not in the way I did. I can always quickly look back and see how much time has passed since Jesus and I began our personal journey together. It would be almost 10 years ago. I cannot believe that much time has passed. But, I look at how far we have come and yes, its been 10 GLORIOUS years.

I hope you know Jesus on a real and personal level and that you experience Him daily. He is everything to me. I love Him with all that I am. And, He loves me in spite of the mess I bring before Him!

Happy Birthday Tyler!! Your birth brought me closer to Jesus! I love you, son.
You are precious in the sight of this momma! I pray God's hand and favor over you as you seek His face and His will for your life. I love you, Tyler. I love you, Jesus! There is not enough gratitude adjectives to describle my feelings toward either of you. I'm most thankful for Tyler's birth and the real revelations that Jesus continues to show me every day!

And, now...a picture of my all grown up boy of 10! Funny thing is, he's crying under the sunglasses....they had just lost their last game at the World Series this past Summer....He'd die if he knew I said that!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Remember, I'm all about gratitude this month

I hope you won't be sick of hearing all the things I'm thankful for! And I have a feeling as fun and easy as this is now, it might be a little tough as we get to the end of November. I sure hope this doesn't get old or too hard, but it sure is possible. HA! And, it may not stay in the real meaningful stuff either. I could be writing posts about how much I love and am thankful for McDonalds french fries and Starbucks (not together)....and that's not what I want to do! Meaningful, Fran, meaningful!

Ok, I feel like since I started the month by writing about my PRECIOUS CHILDREN (see below) then I should follow up with my even more PRECIOUS-ER HUSBAND! He would love that I used the word "precious" as an adjective to describe him. But, he is deeply precious to me. Let me say that he is most handsome and full of such wisdom and grace. Yes, a manly man can be filled with grace. And also a great, big, kind heart. Oh, how I love who he is and how he ticks. For keeping this somewhat interesting and not bore you to tears by reading about someone you may not even know.....LET'S DO THE LIST!!!

5 Reasons in random order why I love my man and am forever grateful for him:

1. He knows that we shouldn't talk too much in the morning...we just kinda say "have a good day, see ya later, bye" and get to the coffee which is way more important at the moment! I fill up, he leaves. Have a good day, honey. I love you.
I can then call him an hour later and we will just talk, talk, talk. Caffeine is good for our marriage.

2. He doesn't think I'm crazy over the fact that I am SOOOOO cold natured and my body completely aches when it gets below 50 degrees and I'm whiny and wishing that Summer was back. He just listens and then probably calls me things like "Grandma or crazy" when I'm not looking. And, maybe rolls his eyes too. So high maintenance, I can be, when it gets cold. He's already had to put the heating blanket on our bed. Ya know, the one that only heats one side. Sad, I know.

3. He is completely generous with his gifts to me and our children. He gets this from his dad. He watched his father be so kind to his mother when it came time for holidays and birthdays. He will go "all-out" for me and I think he really enjoys being able to do that and see me ooooh and aaaaah over the gift. He really does have the concept down of "It is better to give than receive." You don't ever have to wonder if he'll remember or if he'll come through with a good birthday or anniversary present. I love that. But, even better, he will give anything to anyone to help them out. "It is better to give than to receive." Again...he's got it.

4. He is the BEST, BEST, BEST daddy to these 3 boys we have. He will go all out for them too. And I'm not talking "stuff." He will coach, work on, encourage, help, teach, show them anything they are doing and working on or learning. He is completely patient with them and will spend HOURS with them. I'm done after 5 minutes. He's much better at this than I am. I have him beat on helping with school though, but everything else, he rocks! Go, dad, go!

5. He is the head of our household and sets such a beautiful example of someone who pursues the Lord, loves his family, works with integrity and excellence in all things. He is a magnificent man to have at the head of our family. God put him in my path at the most perfect, beautiful time. I knew without a shadow of a doubt that he was the one. He is gentle, kind, fun, funny, and so easy to be around. He can hang with anyone. I just love him so.

"Thank you, Jesus, for bringing Chip into my life. He is most dear to me and my heart and my life. I pray that I can show him and tell him how grateful I am for him. The gifts he brings to this family are immeasurable. He is everything and more. I thank you for him. Bless him, bless our family. We give you all the glory for the work you do in our family. It is You whom we serve. Thank you, Jesus, for this man in my life. In Jesus' Name, Amen!"

And here's a picture of my darling guy with one of the boys.....



Thank you for reading about the most amazing man I know. He's pretty cool. Give thanks today for that someone you love!
Blessings~
Fran

Monday, November 5, 2007

November = _________________

GRATITUDE!!

I first have to admit that November came in and I think I missed the first few days of it. I stayed on October 31st, AKA "Halloween candy hangover and over indulgence," way too long. It seems as if I have come out of this fog and looking at the calendar and screaming...

IT's NOVEMBER PEOPLE!!!!!!

Do you realize, and I'm sure it has entered your mind as many times as it has mine, but Thanksgiving is THIS MONTH and Christmas is exactly 50 days away. Excuse me a second. Gulp. Sigh. Gulp again. Catch my breath. I think I also felt a little stress sit on my chest for a second. You know, that very heavy feeling and then it settles into your stomach and you can't think straight for a second or two, or three or four or even hours.

I read something very cool over at someone's else's blog and I can't remember who. I'll look back through my usual reads and see if I can't give that sweet soul the proper credit! ANYWAY, this person is doing a "what I'm thankful for" on their sidebar and adding to it daily. Well...yes. That is exactly what we should be doing in our life. Thinking long and hard DAILY about what and who we are thankful for. I bet it gets a bit more challenging as the month goes on. NO REPEATS ALLOWED!!

Well, as I begin to think about what I am grateful for...and I'm not going to write about Jesus...He and I already had this conversation and we agreed to keep that between us for the purpose of this post. He knows how crazy I am for Him and there is not enough blog space or adjectives to desribe what He has done for me and does for me on a daily basis. So....my first post on "What am I thankful for?" will be my PRECIOUS children. Here they are sleeping last night. I just love them as they sleep so peacefully and quiet. Their growing minds and bodies are resting, recovering and being renewed for the next day. I sometimes just look at them and think, "where did you come from?" Life and the creation of life is truly amazing and these children are a gift from the Lord.

Psalm 127:3 says, "Sons are a heritage from the LORD, children a reward from him."

My first born, Clay. He is strong. He is sensitive. He wants world peace, local peace, family peace. He often asks, "Why can't everyone just get along?" He wants unity and togetherness for everyone. He deeply cares about people. He already has a heart for the Lord. He desperately studies His Word at school and wants to know more and more about the Creator of the Universe and the One who created Him. He works so hard at everything he does. He doesn't just get by. He's a 110% kind of kid. He is compassionate and giving. That's pretty cool for a boy at 11 to care so much about others. He is a gem. I love him deeply. I am thankful for you, Clay, and the gifts you bring to this family.



My 2nd son, Tyler. You make me laugh. You make me smile. You still let me love on you and I do! You are excellent at what you do. You love to play baseball and I love watching you play. You are laid back just like your daddy and I see so much of him in you. You are filled with humility. You are faithful. You persevere. I love you deeply, Tyler. I am blessed beyond measure with you as my child. I should have known that the child who walked at 7 1/2 months would be always after something and working hard. I am thankful for the gifts you bring to this family.



My 3rd son, Dylan. Yes. The baby, but not the baby anymore. Does he have a chance to grow up because his momma won't let him?! He is truly hysterical and very dramatic and demonstrative in what he does and says. He likes to be the center of attention when he's in funny mode. He loves to come crawl up on my lap and just say, "Momma, I love you." He is tender-hearted and sensitive too. He loves to be friends with everyone. He wants to do the right thing. He loves to tattle when one of his older brothers has not chosen the right thing! :) I love you deeply, Dylan.
I thank God for the joy you bring to this family. You too have a HUGE piece of my heart.



I am most grateful for these boys in my life. I won't forget about their amazing daddy either. He comes first and foremost after my Jesus. I will put a post up about my man on another day.

Psalm 95: 1-2 says, "Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD, let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song."

I encourage you to sing a song of praise and thanksgiving to our Lord who has given us all so much to be grateful for. Spend some time each day being grateful for who and what you have been given.

Thank you for taking the time to read about my precious boys. "Thank you, Jesus, for the gift you have given me with these children. Help me to remember that they are yours and I am the vessel you have trusted to their growth and care. I humbly thank you. I praise you always. I love you and I am filled with gratitude for the many blessings you give me each day. In your most sweet name, Amen."

Blessings to all of you sweet friends.
Fran

Thursday, November 1, 2007

My head is totally spinning

This is just one kids candy....it's times 3 and its killing me.



Happy Halloween Hangover!
I just can't refrain from ALL the yummy, delicious, sinful, miniature, perfect little sized, very chocolate candy bars now residing in my house. It's just too much temptation. I'm not strong at all when it comes to this stuff one bit. Every time I walk by the dern candy bowl, my hand is like a magnet drawn right to it. Before I know it, the heath bar/butterfinger/baby ruth/snickers is down the pipe and resting comfortably in my stomach. Can you say weight gain????

What do we do with all this?? EAT IT!!

Ok, and another thing spinning in my head other than sugar.....

Our house sold this past Sunday....can I get an AMEN, HALLELUJAH, WE LOVE YOU JESUS, GLORY TO GOD???!!!! This is great news for us, but you know what that means?

We must find a new home. Sigh.

"Oh, dear Jesus, would you please just light up, with something magical and very bright, the house you want for us?? My sugar high brain is having a hard time discerning your voice right now! Thank you and Amen."

And, I also have 3 birthdays within my precious family of 5 and Thanksgiving and Christmas and then the move. And then you just throw in normal, every day living with jobs, kids, school, church, social schedule (not really so much us, mainly kids), and everything else we do and......I'm on the verge of going a little cuckoo, kookoo, coocoo, however you spell that word!

I just want ya'll to pray a couple of things for me: for some peace...the Prince of Peace to cover me completely for the next 2 months and then of course thereafter would be good. And also pray for some patience because that is where I can completely lose it with my family when I'm feeling a little stressed and overwhelmed. All those things mentioned above are already creeping into my mind and causing some stress. I can feel it.

So, really all is well with the world and my family and life. I do have MUCH to be thankful for. But, this will be a season of "ya'll got a lot going on" and I want Jesus to just knock me down with His presence as we get through daily living together and managing life through all this. He can do it. I know He can. He's so faithful isn't He? :)

Isaiah 41:10 says "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."

I love ya'll because you are my earthly girls that hold me up and I love that God holds us up in His most magnificent way.

I hope your little trick or treaters had a ball. Its time to think Christmas girls. I just love it! Have a great day! And, thank you for the prayers. Ya'll do have HUGE pieces of my heart.

Blessings~
Fran

I blog so you can get a glimpse into my life as wife, mom of 3 boys, and someone who simply wants to bless others along the way. Have fun and be sweet :)

Boy 1

Boy 1

Boy 2

Boy 2

Boy 3

Boy 3

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