Archive for February, 2010

Little Brother

I have a younger brother. We used to beat each other up all the time. He was a punk kid who got on my nerves, then he was a crazy artist teenager who was more popular than me. .

It was awful, from a teenager’s perspective.

But now he’s a grownup. He’s married and has three fantastic kids.

He led worship this morning in church by doing a painting during the Lord’s Supper. He painted while our awesome musicians played. The painting was of the bread and the cup, but then he turned it upside down, added a little bit, and it was the face of Jesus.

God used him today, and it was beautiful.

He is no longer a punk kid, or a crazy teenager. He’s a talented, funny, godly man who wants to use art to serve Jesus.

I am so proud of him. I am so thankful that mom and dad didn’t lock him in his room forever, even though mom threatened to do so. I think she let him out when she realized he was just going to draw on the walls if he was in there.

He’s come a long way from the guy who wanted astroturf instead of carpet. He’s not the same person as the kid who filled up mom’s new car with water from the hose.

Can you tell I’m thoroughly enjoying telling on him?

I love my brother. Check out his art at

I hope your day has been blessed by someone awesome. Mine has!


February 28, 2010 at 10:16 pm Leave a comment

Five Things

This is on my mind…

Five things I’d want people to say about me (In no particular order):

1. She’s real. No pretense whatsoever about her.

2. She loves Jesus, and he’s in charge of her life.

3. She is consistent. She acts the same no matter where she is or who she’s with.

4. She would jump off of a building for her family, she loves them so much.

5. She can sing, and when she does, you can tell it matters.

Five things I’d be devastated if people said about me:

1. What a fake. I don’t trust her at all.

2. That’s how a minister’s kid is supposed to act.

3. She’s self-righteous and preachy, thinks she is better than others.

4. She is ungrateful and selfish.

5. She tries really hard, but really can’t do that much. Any attention she receives is because of her parents.

I haven’t heard anybody say any of these ten things at all. I’m just cleaning house and this was on my mind. I actually had a hard time with the second list…maybe God is growing me and helping me be okay with whatever folks may think or say.

Do you make mental lists like this? I’m okay if you say no…Being weird is normal for me.

February 25, 2010 at 11:05 pm Leave a comment

Since I Don’t Write on Paper

I have to share a couple of things so I won’t forget!

Tonight, Aidan and I watched the Women’s Combined Ski Thingamajig. I told Michael I wasn’t sure what “Combined” meant, in light of the event. Aidan said, “You’re a grownup and you don’t know what “combine” means? Even I know that!”

Molly asked me today why I was fat when I sit down, but skinny when I stand up. Apparently, my middle needs some work, which I was well aware of without her telling me!

We have fought bedtime for years with our kids. They are snugglers, and just don’t want to go off to bed with just a kiss on the cheek. I’m okay with that, because I’m a snuggler too. So tonight I was in Molly’s room, and we were talking. I was telling her how she was a gift from God and how she was so special and unique and wonderful. She told me, “That’s good mom. Now can you leave? I’m ready to sleep.” I’ve waited for that for years, but I didn’t expect her to diss me!

Paisley has really gotten into singing and dancing. She is learning words to songs and loves to sing in the car. Her favorites are “Awesome Dod” (you know what she means!) and “Laughin’ Song” (Make ‘Em Laugh, from Singin’ in the Rain). She talks a blue streak and is finally reached a level of understanding that makes it a little bit easier to explain things to her. She is probably 75% potty trained, and can go all day in her big girl britches if we don’t get out too much. I’ve noticed a slowing down in the pullup purchases, so that’s a happy thing! She spends most of her day putting dresses on her Barbies. Every girl toy we’ve ever bought Molly has gotten much more use with Paisley. She’s much more girly-girl than her sister. She loves telling knock-knock jokes, and they don’t make a lick of sense, but we laugh anyway.

She loved the snow, and loved wearing her brother’s clothes! I know that negates what I said about the girly-girl thing, but she thinks Aidan is the coolest.

Molly loved the snow more than all of the other kids. She handles the cold a lot better than the big kid or the little kid.

I can’t believe I have known him for almost seven years now. He has changed so much, just these past few months. I could not be prouder.

I’ve had some bad moments this week with the kids. I’ve addressed it before, but I’m so mediocre in motherhood more often than I want to be. But they love each other, and they love me. They’ve extended grace to me, without knowing it was grace. I have returned it to them, and I believe that is what it’s about.

I’m a mother. Right now, that’s where God wants me to be. I don’t know how to want anything else for myself right now because I know that these three kids need me. They need guidance and protection. They need discipline and support. They need hugs and kisses. They need nurturing and nourishing. They need grace and mercy. They need unconditional love. They need me. They need Michael. They need Jesus.

And you know, even though I may not understand them a lot of the time, I realize that we’re so much alike. I need all of those things too.

February 19, 2010 at 4:54 am Leave a comment

‘Tis Love That Makes the World Go Round

Happy Valentine’s Day!

We don’t do Valentine’s around here. No big reason, it’s not a religious or political thing, I just think it’s kind of silly. I mean, we do the cards for the kids to take to school and church. I might get them a happy here and there (but of course, I forgot this year) but Michael and I don’t do much of anything at all.

Because he really tries to show me that he loves me every day.

I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am for that. I am one of those people who loves people easily. I enjoy people and like to let them know they are special to me. Michael is much more introverted and while he is the nicest person alive, he is not as outward in his expressions of love as I am. Except with me.

We both have a lot going on right now, so shopping for one another was not an option. So we consider last weekend on the coast our gift and we’ll move on from there.

Oh, last weekend? It was great. The show was great, at least Brad Paisley’s part. I do not like the first guy or Miranda Lambert AT ALL. They were just a little too beer-drinky-redneck for me. They left me with the feeling of “so…anybody could be a country singer, apparently.”

Then Brad came on and between the singing, playing, songwriting, animation, video, and everything else that he does himself, I realized that not just anybody can be a country singer. At least not at that level. What he can do is amazing.

So we had fun, followed by a busy week, then a snow day! Molly had a blast. Aidan and Paisley had a blast for about an hour. They’re wimps. Michael and I probably had the most fun, there is just nothing like hitting your special someone in the face with a snowball numerous times to show your love for them.

We talked for a long time last night about our very first Valentine’s day. When we started dating in 1997, it was in January, and Michael was supposed to come home for Valentine’s to see me. About a week before, I felt very convicted about us not being on the same page in our spiritual walks. I knew I could love him, but he was not a Christian, and that was the most important thing to me. I called him and broke the date. We stayed very close friends, and I prayed for him daily. We went our separate ways and a year later, God began to really work in his heart and change his mind. We started seeing each other again and I went to Starkville for Valentine’s Day. It was our first “real” date in over a year. I remember going jogging that day, watching tv that afternoon, and then going to get ready for our date that night. I got all dressed up, and when I came down the stairs, it was if something switched on that I had never experienced before in my life. I had dated a good bit, some nice…some were weirdos. But until that minute, I don’t know that I had ever felt so happy, so expectant, so comfortable in my life.

It was like God was saying, “This is good. This is right. This is what you’ve been praying for.” Michael seemed to look at me with new eyes, and I felt the same. We had been friends at that point for five years, and I loved him in that way very much. Then that evening I knew it was different. God was there, guiding us and showing us things about each other that made us so exactly right for one another.

We drove to the nearby town of Columbus and ate at a restaurant called Portobella (or was it Portobello? Like the mushroom?) Anyway, I remember sitting there eating thinking, “My whole life is different now. It’s better.” And it was great to begin with! We laughed a lot, and never had a moment of silence. He was still my best friend, but so much more.

So I guess I should love the holiday a bit more. My life changed on Valentine’s Day. Maybe I don’t want to cheapen what is such a special landmark in our relationship with wilted flowers and chocolates. I don’t know. I’d like to think that the date with Michael was special because it was with Michael, and not because of the holiday.

So we’re going to sit and watch Pairs Figure Skating on the Olympics and enjoy the company of each other. A lot of life has been lived since that first Valentine’s Day. I pray there will be many, many more uneventful holidays just like this one.

February 15, 2010 at 3:57 am 1 comment

If We Can Avoid the Crazy Saints Fans, It’s Gonna Be Awesome!

This weekend is the Brad Paisley concert on the Gulf Coast.

This is my third time to go, and I’m so excited. I love his newest album, and all the other ones too, so I plan on singing along and having a wonderful time.

I just have to decide what to wear.

If you’ll remember last year, we had seats by the catwalk, and I grabbed the dude’s ankle. Here’s proof:

That’s my weird looking limb and the top corner of my head. This is brilliant camera-phone work, people.

You can read about the concert here.

The only thing I’m worried about is this: this is Super Bowl weekend, and there are a lot of Saints fans on the coast. I’m personally nothing close to resembling a Saints fan, so I really hope we don’t have to encounter massive groups of people dressed in black and gold. However, if we do, in the spirit of country music, I’ll be nice.

And rest assured that if anything remotely funny happens regarding Saints fans or anything else, you’ll read it here first. (Actually, this is probably the only place you’ll read it, because I tend to laugh at things nobody else thinks are funny.)

So anyway…my wardrobe options: black/grey sweater dress, leggings and boots OR brown sweater, green skirt, tights and boots OR blue dress, boots and find some tights on the way down there OR….it goes on and on.

Moving on…

The kids have been better this week. Aidan and I have had some great conversations. Paisley is working her way toward being potty trained. Molly is in a whiney phase that is driving us crazy, but she’s still fun to be around. Tonight we all sat and watched our wedding video. I have no idea why we are just now showing it to them, but we pulled it out of storage and took a look. The video is not in good shape, it makes a helicopter sound in the background. But you can still hear everything and it was so much fun to watch. I’ve recapped my wedding multiple times on the blog, so I will spare you, but I have to tell you this:

I have about three tapes of the wedding. Two different men made the videos and each gave me their original. Then there was the tape where they edited the two videos together so I could see different camera angles. These two men are very special to me, and have videotaped most of the highlights of my adolescence, so I was so thankful that they agreed to tape my special day. ANYWAY…we watched the edited film tonight. To be honest, I had never seen it. I’ve just seen the other two tapes, each one from a different perspective. The edited one was great. The tape is aging, and I need to have it put on DVD very soon, but it was so much fun to watch with the kids and get their thoughts and laugh at what they thought was funny.

Here’s the kicker: at the end of the tape, after we ran through the rose petals and drove off into the sunset, there were clips of people wishing us well. I saw some good friends. I saw many, many people who have passed on, and that broke my heart a little bit. I saw people I haven’t seen since that day.

Then I saw my Mamaw. My friend with the camera asked her to say something to us, and she said, “Congratulations, Anne and Michael. I love you both and wish you the best. I pray you’ll always be as happy as you are today. Most of all, I pray you’re as happy as your papaw and I are.”

She looked wonderful. This was way before she got sick and couldn’t get around well. These words do not suffice, but it was awesome to see her again.

The weird thing is, I have never seen that part of the video until tonight. It was not on the copy that I always watched, so I had no idea. Then there she was, in my living room, with her sparkly blue eyes and pretty smile. I think God was saving that for me. I have really been missing her, and there she was. It would have been special if I had seen that clip years ago, but I’m glad it was today.

Then there was a clip of my dad cleaning up after the reception in his bright orange Tasmanian Devil tshirt and shorts that needed to be about 3 inches longer. Molly took one look and said, “What is G wearing???!!!”

It was outfits like that that caused me to get married without hesitation and LEAVE the nest.

Now let’s just hope whatever I pick to wear this weekend won’t cause my children to want to do the same.

February 5, 2010 at 4:10 am Leave a comment

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