Monday, March 24, 2008

Matthew loves me the most

OK, I am being a little like Marie on Everyone Loves Raymond, but I can't help it. I made spinach casserole from a recipe I got from the Internet. I thought we had Mamaw's recipe, but I couldn't find it in my recipe box and I just didn't think about picking up the phone and calling her.

Well, on Easter everyone tried the casserole. Little bites were taken here and there. Matthew, however, took hefty bites and even finished his portion.

Well, tonight, I re-heated our left-overs from Easter dinner. The Sister Schubert's rolls were long gone. We had ham left, pasta, fruit salad and SPINACH CASSEROLE. I went to much care to mix it up better to blend the cream cheese in more (thinking that this was why it was not devoured). Do you think it was eaten? No. Not even my husband, who cares so much about making our kids eat their veggies, would touch it. OK, he has a reputation for being slightly picky, but at least my sweet daughter would eat it. You guessed it. Not a chance. She did later out of total guilt, but just a couple of little bites. She actually shuddered after one bite. Just like when they were babies. So....does this mean that my casserole tasted like baby food? Hmmmm.............

Finally, I offered money to anyone who would eat my food. Matthew took me up on my offer and I paid him $5. Jacob tried with a few bites and then stopped. Benjamin (my Matt look-a-like) didn't even look at it. He said I could pay him 39,000 to eat 39,000 peeps. I was totally insulted. Matt said that he would make them eat it if it tasted good. He braced himself for being knocked out, but I was bigger than that. I wasn't going to stoop to their lever. He was pushing the bonds of our marriage in a major way.

I mean it even had the little fried onions on top until I mixed them in to blend the cream cheese. (OK, don't tell my family, but I thought it was a little gross, too. I just couldn't swallow my pride long enough to admit it.) Anyway, it is gone and I told Jacob as he walked away that I knew he loved me, but not as much as Matthew. I know I have been a little twisted and codependent tonight.

Changing the subject, church yesterday was great. It was such a celebration of what it should have been about. A guy re-committed his life to Christ and another girl got saved. This is what "Easter" is all about. Celebrating the new life Jesus gives us if we come to Him and believe. Our friend Shannon sang an incredible song then our pastor preached an awesome sermon.

Matt and I both agreed, though, that we weren't into the bunny thing much at all and probably will be downplaying it more and more. It really almost turned my stomach to give chocolate and sugar, just because of tradition. Benjamin started asking questions in the car on the way home from church about what bunnies have to do with Easter. I really couldn't give an answer....or did not want to go where asking this question myself would take us. We are already the freaks of the church....well, not as much here at this church, but to question the sacredness of this tradition would, I know, be offensive to some.

We are very much excited about Passover and learning more about that. I am remembering a Passover meal we had when we went to Park Place. It was so much fun sitting around a big table with another family and going through the different parts of the dinner.

Anyway, the next few weeks are going to be fun. Jacob's birthday is next week and we ordered his presents yesterday so they would get here in time. I hope I am not totally crazy, but we got him an archery set. A real one. I am a sucker when he wants something specific. He is such a manly-man. He also wanted a Neo something or other. Like a Bionicle, but a different brand. Anyway. They are on their way from Amazon. We've got to plan his birthday. He has been dying to have it in Jackson and invite their buddy Brian to go bowling. We'll have to see.

After his birthday, we go to Mashulaville to celebrate Grandma and Grandpa's 65th wedding anniversary. Grandma is so excited about it. She is so cute. I can't even imagine being married 65 years. I guess I am on my way with almost 13 years.

Matt's choir goes to state competition Wednesday in Ridgeland. I know they will do great. I remember last year Matt almost couldn't ride down on the bus because of his back. Thanks to the chiropractor and his big white exercise ball he is great now.

Take care, and have an awesome week. I have gotten so pumped up after listening to all of the podcasts from Northpoint Community Church in Georgia. If you want to check them out, here is the website:
Northpoint podcasts
Here is the site for the messages you can listen to online:
Northpoint messages
The other day I started listening to "It Came From Within", and today I went back to listening to the series "Discovering God's Will". They are so good.
Take care.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

My yard is green

Thank you Jay of Green Leaf Gardens. I didn't know it was coming, but we came home today with our yard a beautiful shade of green. We figured that this was his doing. There were a couple of other yards near our house that were also sprayed so we knew they had been out in the neighborhood.

What a nice guy. His birthday is Thursday so we really need to do something nice. He is also Matthew's youth minister at church. It has been great getting to know them. He reminds me in a strange way of my dad. Weird, I know. His dad really reminds me of my dad. Bobby Ray.

Matt is rockin' away on our keyboard. He put the headphones on so all I hear are the keys going up and down. He and I are both determined to get better at playing the piano. He is a little ahead of me, but I am so much better than I was. He got a new book of piano exercises to help us get stronger at playing. The boys are getting to play on the classroom keyboards at school. This is so great.

Tomorrow and Thursday I get to wear jeans to school. (It is not hard to make a teacher happy). This is great because I just got out our summer clothes and they are all over on one side of my room on my vanity because I haven't had time to put them away. I was trying to sort them and give some to the Salvation Army in Oxford, but I only got so far. There they still sit. Tomorrow. My point was that I would have had a tough time finding my other, more professional, clothes. Jeans are always great.

We had a little excitement yesterday. Sunday night when Matthew and I were coming home from SNAP (Sunday Night Activity and Prayer), we saw a little bunny rabbit run across our street. We both, at the same time, went "Awwwwwwwww!" Yesterday when I was driving into the driveway, the kids were frowning and said that there was a dead bunny down the street. I thought to myself, but didn't tell the kids, "I bet that was the bunny we saw. Hmmmm......" I had to make them stay away from it. Claire built a tomb for it and wanted to bury it right by our mailbox. She and her friend, Annie, gathered lots of rocks and glued them together. They even decorated it. She knew better than to have asked if we could get a shovel and bring it to our home to bury. My stomach couldn't have taken that. Maybe she is destined to be a Florence Nightingale. I thought it was very sweet. We did want to give the bunny dignity, though. At one point I heard talk of our little neighborhood tough guy running over it and other gross things. I wasn't sure what was worse; leaving it for our ruthless neighbor or bringing it home. Anyway, it is over now. One episode down, one million to go. :)

I have to cast E-i-E-i Oops! (the 2nd and 3rd grade musical) before we get out of school Thursday. That musical will be April 17th. It is not quite as tough as the other ones. If you ask me, it is a little cheesy, but, have to have a spring musical. This one is about a farm where everything is great, but the cow on the farm won't moo. Anyway, the songs are cute and the kids like it. There you go.

We have been in our house one year now. Everyday I just thank God that we are able to live in it. He gives us so much more than we deserve.
I am getting big ideas (much to Matt's dismay). Jacob's birthday is coming up in a couple of weeks and I would love for us to build a fire pit in our backyard to have boys over to roast hot dogs and marshmallows over it.
At first I saw a pretty simple plan for a fire pit, but then I saw one that was
on DIY. It was built with stones and actual cement. Heavy duty. Oh yeah!

Easter is this weekend. So strange. I can't believe that it is so early this year. I thought it was pretty much right around Passover, but it is no where close this time. Passover begins April 20th. This kind of irks me, but I won't get on my soap box now. OK, well just a little bit. Jesus celebrated Passover. Christianity is about Him. I just feel like celebrating Passover more than Easter sometimes, because of what our society has seemed to make Easter. It is just another Sunday, because I live in His resurrection everyday. It is very moving to take time to remember, but it is just so confusing sometimes making sure He is given the praise and worship He totally deserves. I hate making Him share this remembrance with a bunny and candy. For years I have tried to find a way to make our candy celebration match up with new life in Christ. That eggs symbolize new life like the life we can have in Jesus. I think I will call Sunday Resurrection Day and totally separate Easter from it. I know we will call it Easter, but for me that part will just be fun for the kids and candy, etc. I don't want to cheapen it.
I have loved using Resurrection Eggs and watching the "Easter Carol" from the Veggie Tales. I love watching the "Miracle Maker". I think we owe it to our kids to not water down what He did for us. There is so much to "Easter" without bunnies. How cool is it that the God of the universe allowed His amazing Son suffer and die so we can have new life in Him. That something that happened so long ago would affect our lives today. That we can walk with Him and know His love, mercy and grace. Wow!
I guess I am not going to get warped out about Easter and totally boycott it. I just will keep it in perspective. Can't wait for Passover in April. OK, off of the soapbox.

These are pretty great, though.

I don't think Jesus has anything to be afraid of with a few chocolate eggs. Hey, He created milk and gave man the idea to make these eggs. They must be good.
Matthew personally likes robin eggs. Matt likes Reese's eggs. Claire, Benjamin and Jacob like anything they can get their hands on. SUGAR. SUGAR. SUGAR.
Matthew just said that he bets dentists love Easter. Hmmmm........
Maybe, .............or maybe not.
Sorry, I am ready for another holiday even though we are just getting from a week off. (Spring break) :/

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Kayla Gala

Tonight Matthew had the honor of performing at a benefit concert. He played with his jazz band at Oxford High School. On the first song here he has a solo. It is a pretty long video, but really good.

Matt and I officially told our director that we needed to take a breather from the Oxford Civic Chorus. I hated it because the music we were doing was so good, and we were going to perform in Birmingham and in the Ford Center at Ole Miss. Our family comes first, though. When I told Claire she cheered. They had tried to be supportive of us going, but deep down I don't think they liked us being gone during the week.

Tomorrow is our last school day until spring break and then tomorrow night a friend from church has offered to baby-sit for us so we can have a date. :)

These past few weeks have been so wild. Please pray for me about where I am supposed to be next year. I would love to be close to home, but just am not sure where the Lord wants me. I know He will work it out.

Ironically, I have been listening to messages from Northpoint Community Church in Georgia that have been about becoming great and what that means. About what it really means to be great. Is it that you are great at something, or just that you strive to be the kind of person that is known for loving people and serving them? Good stuff.

Take care.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Like I said...Matt, Claire, Benjamin, Uncle Neil and Elizabeth are fun people!

Here is just a quick post before I clean up our den. Matt and the kids went with Neil and his girlfriend Elizabeth to Southaven to see U23D tonight. The kids are beside themselves. Claire was jumping all around dancing and singing. Jacob decided that he could see it anytime and really wanted to stay home, so I stayed with him. He is more laid-back and low key. He likes the peace of home and all the computer to himself. (He thinks. :)

We have had a great weekend. I took off Friday to go to Mom's and on the way went to Claire's school to read some Dr. Seuss books. Here is a pic of the Cat in the Hat rice krispie treat I made.
It was fun to be there. Dr. Seuss was our author of the month and I was supposed to do something special to celebrate him. I don't get to go to their school much since I work so far away.

Today we saw Mamaw and Uncle Chris for lunch before we drove home.

I am so ready for March. Now Matt and I are through with our big weeks of festivals. His choir will go on to state competition later this month. My choir did so much to be proud of, but we won't be going on to competition. We are going to be working toward our final concert and singing at graduation. They want do put on a talent show, but we'll have to see.

It is kind of cool to be building a program, but it is also tough. I am learning to be what these kids need. It doesn't always come naturally. They need structure and discipline and I have always grown up with love and not so much discipline. I am praying as I work through my relationships with my students. There can be so many feelings on sleeves in high school. The students at that age can be so mean and the kids are just hardened by that sometimes. God is holding my hand this whole way through. He is so good. He is showing me how to learn from my mistakes. I must be learning a lot. Hah! :)

I am not sure if I wrote about how the 4th-6th grade musical went. It was great! The kids were fantastic. So much charisma in that group. It was so much more them than anything I did that pulled that off. I really needed that success leading up to this week. If I hadn't had that, I'm not sure I would have a job now. OK, I am over-reacting a little bit. It did help, though. Please pray for my hs group. They really need a good end of the year.

I forgot to mention that last weekend Matthew got to go to the Ole Miss Band Clinic. We were so proud for him. Here he is with his siblings.
Doesn't he look proud to be with us? :)He is so dignified at 16 years old.
Would you blame him? We are a motley crew.

Here is the concert band performing.

Anyway, one more week until spring break. Thank you, Lord.

Matt, Claire, Benjamin, Uncle Neil and Elizabeth are fun people

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