Sunday, December 30, 2007

Roll Tide!

The University of Alabama ended the 2007 season on a high note by defeating the University of Colorado at the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, La. It was a great game...only because I was really happy with the ending. Alabama wasn't that impressive for 3/4 of the game. After the 1st quarter, Bama played inconsistently. Bama managed to win and everyone here at the Owen house is happy. Jonathan started out the game saying that he was cheering for Colorodo since he was born in Colorado. Before the end of the 1st quarter (when Alabama had scored 20 points), he decided he was cheering for Alabama. The kids didn't get to watch the whole game but they will be happy with the news.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Apples to Apples

We played Apples to Apples on Christmas. I know it has been out a few years but it was a first for me. Here's how it goes-- Apples to Apples consists only of two decks of cards: Things and Descriptions. Each turn, the current judge selects a description and players try to pick, from the cards in their hands, the things that best match that description. The judge then chooses the “best” thing and awards the card to the player who played it. Once a player has won a pre-determined number of cards, that player wins. This isn't a battle of wits like Trivial Pursuit, or a battle of drawing skills like Pictionary. This is pick the most appropriate word OR make the judge laugh (usually), and win all the points."

We had so much fun with this game. I love playing light-hearted fun games. What are some of your favorite games to play?

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #23

This Thursday we are still enjoying Christmas and all the joy it brought. The boys are busy enjoying their new toys each day and I am enjoying having them all play together (with Jonathan home from school). This Thursday I am especially thankful for Christmas. I am thankful that we can celebrate Jesus’s birthday. I am thankful that Jesus was born and how significant his birth is in my life. We had a lot of fun this year. I am thankful for it all. That’s my thankful thought this Thursday. So, let me tell you a bit about our Christmas.

Christmas Eve day was spent doing some very last minute shopping. Seth decided that he wanted to take the boys out to buy me a present. So, while he was out I decided to run out and get him some fun stocking stuffers. We enjoyed an early a nice dinner (lasagna, salad, bread). Then, we went to a Christmas Eve service at 6 p.m. at a local church. We drove around and looked at Christmas lights in town. We got out at the local park that was decorated with lights. It was freezing but the boys had fun running around. We went home and decorated our Gingerbread cookies and our Gingerbread house. Once the kids got in bed, Seth and I had our Christmas Eve date. We usually fondue but this year (since our fondue pot has not been recovered from the moving boxes) we simply had cheese and crackers and fruit. At some point we began to get out the gifts for the kids and realized that we had more putting together than we thought! We set out gifts that are unwrapped for each of the kids. We call these gifts “Santa Surprises” in honor of the way St. Nicholas (Santa) surprised people with gifts. Jonathan was getting a skateboard. David and Thomas were getting scooters. Elisabeth was getting an Exersaucer. We didn’t realize that there was quite a lot of putting together for that Exersaucer! It took about an hour and half. It was humorous a bit, especially when we thought about how as a 5 week old she wouldn’t be able to enjoy it right away. (I am not sure Seth found as much humor in it as me.) On Christmas morning, the boys woke up about 6:30. They were very excited and not too thrilled having to wait upstairs while we changed Thomas’s diaper and got our cameras ready (and the coffee going, of course). The boys game down and enjoyed opening presents and eating the Gingerbread house. We had pigs in a blanket as we opened presents and then we had a late brunch of pancakes and bacon. Christmas evening we went over to a house of some new friends of ours. They have 4 kids—so with 8 kids (6 boys), it was very busy and loud. We had a wonderful dinner and then played games afterward. We got home and got the kids in bed about 10 p.m. Needless to say, they were exhausted from all of the excitement.
I suppose I left out mentioning that we talked about what makes Christmas special and why we celebrate it. I also forgot to say that Jonathan took his first communion on Christmas Eve. It was very special. And, though I tried to explain it, I still don’t think that David understands why it didn’t snow on Christmas.

Christmas was wonderful. I am so thankful for Christmas joy!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Full Friday

It is Friday and where did the week go? I meant to post yesterday but I didn't get to it. Thursday night was one of the only nights this week that I didn't have a huge agenda. So, I spent the night talking to my husband. He encouraged me to write my Thursday Thanks Tank list but I was very thankful to have the time with him. I filled my Thanks Tank this week (which is why this is a "Full Friday") I just didn't write down a list. So, here it is, my late list...

BELATED THURSDAY THANKS TANK

1. Time with my husband

2. Friends: I mailed my Christmas cards this week. I was reminded of how many wonderful friends we have. I am so thankful for each person on our card list. I was struck by the fact that we sent cards out to 16 different states.

3. Computers: If it weren't for computer technology, I would never be able to stay in touch with our friends and family located in 16 states. I enjoy my computer time and I enjoy my long distance relationships.

4. A clear head: (No jokes, please) I spent Wednesday night and most of Thursday suffering from a terrible sinus headache. I am thankful, oh so very thankful, that the headache went away early Thursday evening. I feel so refreshed this Friday morning because I don't have a headache (and I am putting thoughts together before the kids are awake!)

5. Breaking Free: I may write about this in an upcoming post. So for now, this thankful item may seem kind of ambiguous. I am thankful for the freedom to wipe the slate clean. I am thankful for the ability to declutter and not hold on to things I don't need.

6. Finishing a cup of coffee before the kids wake up: If only I could get up and get going more often. My coffee is much more enjoyable when I don't have to heat it up in the microwave 3 times before I finish it!

7. Kisses from the Kids: Last night was wrestling night at our house. (This happens a lot and it sure will be fun to see Elisabeth in that mix one day.) Seth gets on the floor and wrestles with the boys. The boys LOVE it. Last night I got on the floor and participated. Really, I just jumped in and tickled everyone. The boys forgot I could roll around on the floor (after my pregnancy stint) and they were so thrilled, I was getting spontaneous kisses. I love that! I love surprising my kids.

8. Christmas season: I am thankful for how joyful people are during the Christmas season. I am thankful for the reason we celebrate Christ's birth.


That's it-- that's all I have time for this morning.

I am quite thankful this week and I hope you are, too!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #22



This is such a busy time of year! I have been struggling to feel thankful. I am thankful for many, many things but I haven't been feeling it, if that makes sense. I have been trying to concentrate on how thankful I am for Christmas. This is one of my favorite times of the year. I have to admit that I have been mostly just feeling worn out. It may be the busyness or the fact that I am way behind on everything or just the fact that I am on the new baby sleep schedule. As always, writing my list uplifted my spirit. I hope it stirs your heart, too.

Here's what was on my heart tonight:

1. Gingerbread lattes. I have not been getting them often enough (as I mentioned to my hubby tonight—they only come around once a year!). However, I had the pleasure of running out tonight and the latte was wonderful.
2. Visiting Family. My in-laws were just here visiting. They don’t get to visit very often. It was really nice having them in our home. I enjoyed seeing them play with the kids and hold Elsie…and I just really enjoyed their company. We are so thankful that both sets of our parents were able to visit us during this crazy time of year.
3. Christmas Choir programs. Jonathan’s school music program was last night. He was very cute and excited about the program. I enjoyed watching him but I also enjoyed seeing all of the families being excited for their kids. We made a family outing out of watching the program, which was quite a feat with the late program (7-8 p.m.) and a 4 yr old, 2 yr old and 3 week old. I was thankful to be there together because I know it meant a lot to Jonathan.
4. MOPS meals. My MOPS group is bringing my family meals. I enjoyed this MOPS tradition when 2 of my boys were born and it is a blessing again. They even worked the meals around our company—bringing us meals in-between grandparent visits and now meals after our company left. My house seems to be the craziest the 2 hours before dinner. It is very helpful right now not to have to cook dinner.
5. Baking. Baking fills my heart with joy—and tis the season! Yesterday I made a batch of Snickerdoodles. The day before I made a batch of chocolate chip cookies. Tomorrow I am making Pumpkin bread. I am planning on trying some new recipes, too, and I have been having fun looking through a new holiday cookbook.
6. My mother-in-law’s southern cooking. The last night before she left she made me chicken and dumplins (veggies as side dishes) and banana pudding for dessert. It was incredible. (How many of you are chicken and dumplin fans? AND, do you like your banana pudding warm –right out of the oven- or cold?)
7. Christmas cards. This is really one of my favorite things. I love getting mail, anyway, and getting Christmas cards is just simply wonderful.

By the way, my Thursday Thanks Tank was inspired by Pam over at Without Fear. Take some time to make your own Thankful list. I'd love to hear what you are thankful for!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Saturday, December 01, 2007

College Football

Any college football fans out there? The big SEC championship game is today. We will be watching it at our house and cheering loudly for the VOLS (yes, I can cheer for them when they aren't playing BAMA!). Anyway, I wanted to pass on this interesting and funny article or post on the World magazine blog: College Football Post

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #21



Well, I am trying, trying, trying to get back in the swing of things. My routine has been thrown by my beautiful little girl who vies for my attention and warms my heart. We love every newborn moment (okay, maybe not the nights that she hasn’t slept well)! I think this is a perfect place to start my thankful list.

1. Elisabeth: I am so thankful for this little one God has given me. I amazed by her and amazed constantly (no, it hasn’t worn off) that I have another girl in the house. For the most part, she is sleeping well. She is nursing well. She was jaundice but her bilirubin level started coming down pretty quickly due to how well she was eating (all 3 of our boys were jaundice /2 had to have photo-therapy/none of the others ate as well as she is) I am incredibly thankful for having a healthy little one.
2. My Parents: Wow, my parents are troopers. They came out to see us around the beginning of November so they could be here when Elisabeth was born. In all truth, my husband pretty much begged them to come early because with the early birth track record, we felt sure our girl would be early. So, my parents spent a good 2 weeks getting to play with the boys before Elisabeth came. They took them to parks, an indoor pool, they took them on bike rides around the block, they played games with them, they took them to McDonalds playland (which is such a treat, ya know!?), they took them to the Children’s Museum, and on and on. They just spent quality time with the kids and gave me much needed rest! And, then, finally, they were able to help us welcome Elisabeth – right on time with me going into labor on my due date. They got Jonathan off to school, took Jonathan to a birthday party, played with the boys, brought them to the hospital all decked out in their big brother T-shirts, they made meals, they took tons of pictures, and basically they just showered, and showered and showered us with love.
3. Naptime: Jonathan is at school. David and Thomas are napping. Elisabeth is napping. I LOVE naptime! It is quite surprising and refreshing to have them asleep at the same time! (Now, if you are wondering, I am not asleep because I expect Elisabeth to wake up at any time.)
4. Photos: I love, love, love photographs of my family. I LOVE setting up the slide show on my computer of pictures from when Elisabeth was born. I could look at them over and over. (Maybe I should post some more pictures!)
5. Sweet Family Moments: I really had no idea how the boys would be when they met their sister. I sort of had a feeling about Jonathan and David but I imagined Thomas to be wild and crazy and demanding. I guess I just didn’t know how my 2 year old would handle it. Anyway, when the boys came to the hospital, it was a sweet family moment. All three were SO INCREDIBLY sweet. Thomas was talking in a sweet whispering voice, looking at Elisabeth in an amazed way and touching her ever so gently. They were all excited but loving and gentle. (This is pretty amazing for three energetic boys!) The boys have all be just priceless with their sister. (Okay, in truth since the hospital moment, Thomas has had his ‘I want to touch her eyeball' and 'I want to hit baby Elisabeth' moments but the good has outweighed the bad.) Every day Jonathan asks if he can hold her and he will just sit and hold her and look at her adoringly. I am thankful for all of these sweet family moments. I treasure them in my heart.
6. The Joy of Christmas: We started decorating our house this past week. The decorations, the music, and the excitement of the kids—it all just fills my heart with joy. I love this time of year! I am thankful for the Christmas season. I am thankful that we have been talking a lot of about why we celebrate Christmas.
7. My Husband: He has been so encouraging and loving. I am truly blessed by him.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

My Princess




Elisabeth (Elsie) Jane Owen
Born Saturday, November 17 at 1:52 a.m. Weight 7 lbs 14 ounces Length 20 3/4 inches

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #20




This Thursday night I am thankful that I am going to bed... before 11 p.m.

(No baby yet!)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Wednesday Words



Romans 8:25
25 "But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently."



I enjoyed the 8th chapter of Romans today. This verse speaks to my heart both because of my physical waiting for the birth of my baby and the spiritual waiting of my heart. Feel free to share with me -- about something you are waiting for or some words that are encouraging you this Wednesday.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Pregnancy Update




I am not overdue but I feel like the baby is late! For my 1st pregnancy I delivered 12 days early, the 2nd pregnancy was 5 weeks early, and the third was 7 days early. This time I am within days of my due date. I am due November 16. Three days to go! Of course by this point I have realized that the due date means nothing. This baby will get here when she wants to. (It has been humorous getting the ‘girls show up on their own timing’ comments!) Let’s see, I don’t want to put real details out on this blog. I will say that my body is progressing but not going into labor. Each night I fight the sleep battle and loose. Elisabeth is not interested in my getting rest. If she isn’t kicking and stretching all night, I am having contractions (which are sometimes painful and sometimes not—but not regular enough to be labor). This time around I have been experiencing a lot of swelling. This is new to me. The only time I really remember significant swelling with my other pregnancies was the day I gave birth—after giving birth. I think with Thomas I had some minimal swelling in my feet toward the end of the pregnancy. This time, my hands and feet have been swelling off and on for the last week pretty significantly. What else can I tell you? All of this “extra” time has allowed us to be more ready for a baby in our house. I have had so much time to think I have begun unpacking and repacking the hospital bag!

Here are some things that I haven’t enjoyed hearing:

“I didn’t know you could get THAT big.”
“I think you might go until Nov 21st.”

Keep us and the delivery in your prayers. She HAS to be born soon!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #19




Today I am thankful for:

1. Prayer: I was reminded this week that I used to be a worrier. I was asked what changed. The conversation about how prayer changed my life was an awesome reminder of how I am thankful for prayer. It keeps me from being focused on the negative and it helps me tremendously when I am stressed.
2. Laughter: Last night I had some comic relief. It was therapeutic. I am thankful for how laughter is refreshing. Oh, and I am also thankful for the laughter of children. There is nothing like tickling your kids and listening to them laugh!
3. Individuality: I have been reminded the last few days that we are all created different with different likes and dislikes, with different temperaments, and with different personalities. It shows how unique each person is and it has been a challenging reminder that though I am unique, I am not always right.
4. Quiet: I had the chance to have the house to myself today. That is such a rare treat! I love a quiet house. (And with anticipating a little newborn cry, this quiet is even more sacred!)
5. Sunshine: My mom is visiting and she has been very aware of the gray clouds this week. I think I have adapted to the NW weather because I don’t focus on the clouds too much. However, because the weather has affected my mom each day, the sunshine today seems extra nice and uplifting.
6. Play-dough: I love how play-dough can entertain overtired preschoolers when nothing else can.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Halloween

The Owen boys dressed up as characters from Star Wars this Halloween. The first few pictures are when the boys first tried on their costumes. They got to stand on momma's and daddy's bed to check themselves out in the mirror! The rest of the photos are from Halloween night. The boys had a blast!

Obi-Wan went from house to house telling people "No Nuts!" and "No Nuts for me!" That was quite a surprise and a bit funny. We didn't have the heart to discourage him from being so persistent about it. Trick or treating wore out Darth Vader. At one point when asked if he was tired he said, "Yes, I am BIG tired." Anakin could have run from house to house trick or treating all night!


Thursday, November 01, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #18




My thankful thoughts for today:

1. I know this is silly… but… I am thankful that little angel was not born on Halloween. Nothing against anyone who has a Halloween birthday but for some reason, I really didn’t want my baby to be born on Halloween. It is silly but I am thankful nonetheless.
2. I took a nap today! I am thankful for the rest.
3. Brownies are so yummy. I am thankful for the brownies that are baking in the oven. I got out the mix and decided I was not up for the tough job of mixing brownies and then my friend just made them for me!
4. My brownie making, kid-watching so I can take a nap, come to Oregon so my husband can relax friend Kim. Kim dropped everything and came to Oregon just so we could be more relaxed waiting for our angel to be born. She is staying until my parents get here. She is a gift from heaven…and the brownies she threw in the oven are starting to smell pretty heavenly right now, too.
5. Gingerbread Latte Season!! Today was the first day the gingerbread latte became available for the season at Starbucks. Oh my, I am so thankful!
6. The right color of green. The nursery is painted! The first time it was painted (or 2 walls anyway), it was the wrong color. The second paint color is wonderful.
7. The excitement of friends. I have been showered with love and excitement because of my 4th little one on the way. It has been so refreshing to have my friends excited for me. My friends- thank you for making me feel special.

Well, I am a little low on Thankful thoughts today. It has taken me a while to come up with this little list. I think it is because of pregnancy brain. I am very thankful but I just cannot think tonight. ONE MORE: (#8.) I am thankful that my husband encouraged me to do this tonight—brought the laptop to me, already logged into blogger, so I would not miss focusing on being thankful.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Scariest Part of Halloween



The scariest thing on Halloween for me is Candy—peanut candy to be more precise. I spend the whole month scouring the candy isles looking for peanut free candy. It isn’t as easy as skipping the snickers and Reese’s either. It is quite a task. For example, I have only been able to find peanut free (void of the “may contain peanuts” or “made in a factory that processes peanuts” warning) candy corn can at the Dollar Store. This was after searching and searching for candy corn and then reading on a peanut allergy website forum that the Dollar Store has safe candy corn. Just last night I saw some Spiderman lollipops that the boys would have loved. They weren’t safe. It is frightful night when you realize that even regular lollipops have a peanut warning!

I have always loved Halloween. I have many fond memories from when I was a kid of dressing up, carving the pumpkin and trick or treating. It was a fun family night. I love the world of pretend and I love seeing my kids have fun getting dressed up. But, now Halloween makes me nervous—very nervous, in fact.

David handles Halloween really well. He knows that there will be candy that is “not safe” and that we will have to trade his unsafe candy out for safe candy. Of course, when normal lollipops are not always safe, we have to do a lot of candy swapping. We have to stick to the candies we feel confident about. David is used to being in situations (like when they had cake at cub scouts last night) where he cannot eat a treat simply because of the uncertainty. It isn’t easy for him sometimes but most of the time he takes it all in stride.

I am growing dealing with his allergy. Just last week he must have touched something that was contaminated because his eye started swelling, getting all red, and getting a white film on it. He kept saying, "My eye hurts!" My immediate reaction (which I did not display) was to freak out. I didn't. We put allergy visine in his eye, washed his hands and waited. This was extremely alarming because we were at home in our safe environment. We did know that he hadn't eaten anything bad. I had just come back to the house from a neighborhood shower where they were serving small cups of peanuts. Then several people walked from that house to my house (presumably with peanut dust on their hands). Isn't that astounding? We couldn't imagine what else would have caused him a reaction. So, back to Halloween... I wonder about cross contamination issues (someone handing out candy after eating a Reeses). I struggle with being obsessive, over protective, and simply afraid.

I cling to this -- my fear fighting verse: 2 Timothy 1:7 and I pray. If you think of it, pray for me and David's safety this Halloween.

2 Timothy 1:7
"For Got did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline."

Friday, October 26, 2007

Dinner

Tonight we had an amazing dinner. First of all, BOTH Jonathan AND David LOVED the dinner. This is extremely rare. My boys have opposite taste in food. We usually have meals where Jonathan and David could share one plate because they like the opposite parts of the meal. Both boys exclaimed "I love it!" after eating the first bite. I honestly thought that David was copying Jonathan until I saw that he ate all his meat with out us having to coach him at all. On top of that, Seth complimented and complimented the meal. I cannot remember all the things he said but the comments were along these lines: "man, you must love me" and "Thank you" and "This is the best meal I have had all week (not that your other meals weren't good)." and "Wow." He also wanted to write a thank you email to the person who gave me the recipe.

Interested in the recipe?

You really should try this one. (It is out of the Bethany MOPS Cookbook.)

Cranberry Chicken
1 small onion, thinly sliced (I didn't have an onion handly so I used minced onion. It worked well but I bet a real onion would give it even more flavor)
1 cup cranberries, fresh or frozen (unthawed)
12 skinless, boneless chicken thighs (about 2 1/4 lbs)
1/2 cup ketchup
4 Tbsp firmly packed brown sugar
2 tsp dry mustard
4 tsp cider vinegar

In a 3-quart or larger crockpot, combine onion and cranberries. Rinse chicken, pat dry and arrange on top of cranberry mixture. In a small bowl, mix ketchup, sugar, mustard and vinegar; pour over chicken. Cover and cook on low until chicken is very tender when pierced (6 1/2 to 7 1/2 hours). Serve with fluffy white rice.

(Thank you, Heather, for this wonderful recipe!!!)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

100 Plus Things About Me

This post is my 102nd post on my blog. To honor writing over 100 posts, I decided to write down a little bit about myself. It sure was much, much harder than I expected to come up with so many things about myself.

1. I have 3 boys and one girl.
2. I was born in Florida.
3. I’ve lived in Florida, Tennessee, Alabama, Colorado, Virginia, Washington, and Oregon.
4. I’ve spent the last 10 years outside of the South East but I still consider myself a Southern girl.
5. My first job was at Arby’s.
6. My last job was working as a Software Tester.
7. I have a degree in communication. If nothing else, I plan on using my journalistic skills on interrogating my kids as they age.
8. When I was little I dreamed about being a National Geographic Reporter.
9. My favorite colors are yellow and green.
10. I do not like country music.
11. I have to admit (for my husband’s sake) I did listen to country music some in college due to being in love with my husband and having an amazing college roommate (who was quite in love with George Strait).
12. My favorite movie of all time is It’s a Wonderful Life.
13. I have a dog named Bailey.
14. I love the movie You’ve Got Mail.
15. I don’t watch TV regularly.
16. The most regular TV watching at our house is PBS Kids and college football in the fall.
17. We occasionally consider getting rid of cable but college football has been worth the Comcast bill!
18. I check the news regularly online.
19. I have rediscovered my love of reading fiction this last year.
20. The most amazing taste in the world is chocolate covered strawberries.
21. My favorite drink indulgence is a Latte from Starbucks
22. My favorite dessert indulgence is Ice Cream.
23. One of my pet peeves is shopping carts left out in a parking lot.
24. Another pet peeve of mine is bending your book open and propping it that way instead of using a bookmark.
25. I have two sisters.
26. I am the middle child.
27. I am not a morning person.
28. My favorite meal of the day is breakfast.
29. I love silence.
30. I enjoy scrapbooking.
31. I enjoy making cards and rubber stamping.
32. I like to sew but I am a novice.
33. I pieced a quilt but I did not quilt it. My grandmother quilted it for me.
34. I want to learn more about gardening and plants.
35. My ideal vacation or retirement home would be next to water.
36. I enjoy swimming.
37. I enjoy soccer. I played as a child and have also played as an adult.
38. I am out of shape now.
39. I have always wanted to travel to Spain (maybe due to one of my favorite childhood books, Ferdinand).
40. I have also wanted to go see the Macy’s Day parade since I was a kid.
41. I love taking trips.
42. I love flying (turbulence does not bother me).
43. I do not like roller coasters. They don’t scare me or make me sick. They just make my neck muscles extremely sore.
44. My passion is prayer.
45. I believe in the idea that each person’s perception of a situation is their reality. (The motto a mentor taught me years ago: Perception is Reality.)
46. I believe Listening is one of the best gifts you can give a child.
47. I took an ROTC class in college and went repelling.
48. I have taken a ride in a Glider airplane. It was awesome—much more peaceful than exhilarating.
49. I have also gone parasailing. It was much the same- more peaceful than exhilarating (except when my honeymooning husband told the boat driver to dip me in the water!).
50. My favorite candy bar is a Snickers. (Update: I have given up Snickers. My new favorite is Heath bars.)
51. I rarely eat Snickers since my son is extremely allergic to peanuts.
52. The first car that I loved was a Pontiac Fiero.
53. The last car that I loved was my Mazda Miata.
54. I look forward to giving up my mini-van one day – though I am confident it is years and years away.
55. The first concert I ever went to was a Van Halen concert. I did’t even like Van Halen (but I thought I liked the guy I was with).
56. The best concert I have been to was a U2 concert.
57. I haven’t been to a concert in a long, long time.
58. I married my high school sweetheart.
59. I hated high school.
60. I love learning.
61. I loved college.
62. I went to the University of Alabama and I am a proud BAMA fan.
63. I’d like to go back to school. I don’t know what I want to study.
64. My favorite flower is a daisy.
65. I really don’t like cutting the grass. I don’t like long grass more than I detest having to cut it.
66. For jewelry, I’d take silver (or platinum!) over gold.
67. I love clowns. My favorite part of the circus is the clowns.
68. It makes me sad to hear people say they are scared of clowns.
69. I dressed up as a clown with my sister and went to cheer up my mom at work. (It worked- it was funny and she was QUITE surprised!)
70. I picked up a hitch hiker once. I was with a group of friends (we had rented a van) on a sight-seeing trip in Colorado.
71. I wish I had a better memory.
72. Shoe shopping drives me crazy.
73. I wish every shoe was as comfortable as Birkenstocks.
74. I used to pretend my Barbies were Princess Leia.
75. My 3 boys love Star Wars and have Star Wars costumes this year for Halloween.
76. Mold grosses me out. I mean it I find something in the fridge with mold on it, I want to scream and then disinfect the whole fridge.
77. I hate cock roaches. I cannot imagine why they were created.
78. My boys have given me a new appreciation for bugs (but not cock roaches!). [Side note: Child 1) Inspects bugs; Child 2) Extremely afraid of Bugs; Child 3) Stomps on Bugs]
79. I took piano lessons as a child and into my early teen years.
80. I didn’t enjoy piano lessons and I won’t play for anyone.
81. The only reason I am thankful that I had lessons is because I can read music.
82. I wish I could carry a tune.
83. I look forward to being able to sing and make beautiful music in heaven.
84. I love the sound of a violin.
85. I don’t have a good sense of direction.
86. I’d rather not give out directions even if I am totally familiar with a route.
87. When caravanning, I would rather follow than lead.
88. I do not like walking through large groups of people.
89. I love taking my kids to the park.
90. Being outside is refreshing to me (even if it is at a community park with kids running around acting crazy).
91. I think it should be a law that parks with playgrounds must have bathrooms.
92. I have never colored or highlighted my hair.
93. I wonder if having a head full of gray hair will bother me or my husband more.
94. I don’t make decisions quickly and I like the freedom to change my mind.
95. That is precisely why I would never get a tattoo.
96. I do not like monopoly or any kind of trivial pursuit.
97. The most recent games I enjoyed were Pitt and Sequence.
98. Crosswords puzzles don’t interest me but I find word searches relaxing.
99. I do not enjoy Math or working with numbers.
100. I am not a good price shopper.
101. Seeing a rainbow in the sky gives me childlike joy.
102. I never want to stop learning, making new friends, improving myself and growing closer to God.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Some Sad News

We are quite sad here at the Owen house not to be able to watch and cheer (and scare our kids) during this Saturday's game. CBS was originally going to carry the game and they dropped it. It is discouraging and disappointing. No doubt, we will still be cheering hard for our teams (ROLL TIDE!!). And, I am sure my hubby will find a way to be in his truck listening to his XM radio SEC station during the game.

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This was taken (without permission) from the Tennessean.

UT-Bama gets the cold shoulder
by David Climer

A sign of the college football times:
The Tennessee-Alabama game is not on national TV.
This classic Southern football rivalry, once worthy of national attention, is going regional this year. The game will be carried on the Lincoln Financial telecast, with the decidedly non-prime time kickoff time of 11:30 a.m.
That speaks volumes about the current state of the two programs. Tennessee has righted itself after a slow start and is back in the Top 25 rankings. But Alabama, under first-year coach Nick Saban, is trying to get back up and running.
TV executives looked at the SEC buffet and decided that Florida-Kentucky and Auburn-LSU are worthy of more attention than the Vols and Crimson Tide.
Local bias aside, I can’t disagree with them.

Thankful Thursday #17




I went to bed last night with a headache and when I woke up this morning it was not only still there but it was worse. One of my first thoughts was “I am definitely not feeling thankful today.” I am still not in the best of spirits but I figure just trying to jot down some what I am thankful from the week might help my attitude today.

1. New Furniture: We had new furniture (dresser and chest of drawers) for the boys delivered on Tuesday. This means that the baby changing table and chest of drawers have been moved into the baby’s room.
2. Baby: Baby Elisabeth seems to be doing everything on track so far. I had an appt yesterday and the doctor just kept saying over and over that everything is great. She is head down—and I am especially thankful for that!
3. Reminders that God’s grace is a gift. I have been concentrating on some verses in Ephesians this week (Ephesians 2). I am overwhelmed by the “incomparable riches of his grace” and the fact that God seats us in the “heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” (You might just should look these verses up yourself! It is so wonderful to remember what we are blessed with.)
4. Joy of Children: The boys got their Halloween costumes last night and the sheer joy on their faces as they put on their costumes gave me such delight. I love the excitement of pretending!
5. Words of Wisdom from the Kids: I am thankful to hear my children sharing words of wisdom (that they were taught from both momma and daddy). It is encouraging to see that everything doesn’t go in one ear and out the other. What were the words of wisdom? “No one can MAKE you do anything. You cannot MAKE me feel mad.” He didn’t go on to explain that we take responsibility for our own feelings but I think he is getting it!
6. Laughter at very unexpected times: Our kids make us laugh sometimes and sometimes it is when we most need it. This week this kid exchange helped us cope. (Just select to "Show Original Post." I am too tired to figure out how to link this correctly.)

Alright I found more than I expected to feel thankful about! I hope and pray that you are having a good week. Take some time and let me know what makes you happy.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

2 Special People Celebrating Birthdays!



Happy Birthday to my dear sister Carrie and my sweetest friend, Kim. I woke up this morning thinking about both of you. During my prayer time, I thanked God for you. I hope your day has been wonderful!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Comment Moderation

I don't know if any of you bloggers have had any problems with comments. Tonight when I checked out my blog, I had this rambling, extremely long anti-christian, profanity laced comment on my Thursday Thanks Tank. What was interesting to me is that although I have my comments set up in such a way that I get emails when I get comments, I didn't get an email that I had a new comment. I don't know if it was some kind of internet spam or what. At any case, I couldn't figure out how to delete just that one comment. All I could figure was that I had to delete the post or hide all the comments for the post. If any of you know a way to delete one comment, let me know.

For now, I have turned on the comment moderation. This means I will approve the comments that are displayed. Nothing should change for you when you comment. Your comment just won't display immediately.

I have to wonder if the comment moderation would have helped in this situation since I never even got notified of the comment. Would I have been notified to accept the comment if the moderation was on? I am guessing not.

Let me know if you have some insight on this.

Bloggy Giveaways

You have to check out the Bloggy Giveaways blog. I am SO excited to have just won a wireless keyboard from the site!!

All you have to do to participate in the giveaways is check out the Current Giveaways and leave a comment. Shannon (from Rocks in My Dryer) draws a random winner from the comments and runs a random number generator. There are no strings attached. So, if you leave a comment and you don't win, no one is contacting you or using your information. You never know you might just win something like I did!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #16



I love Thankful Thursday. As always, I encourage you to take a few minutes today and think about the great things in your day. I am thankful for these things this morning:

1. Birthdays: Yesterday was my niece’s 1 year old birthday, today is my dad’s birthday, the day after tomorrow is my mother-in-law’s birthday. I like birthdays because they remind me how thankful I am for the birthday person.
2. My morning walk to the bus stop: Each morning David and I walk Jonathan to the bus stop. Thomas sleeps in. I love these walks. I love David holding my hand and just getting out into the fresh air each morning.
3. Husband is coming home: My husband has been out of town all week. The kids have been sick with high fevers and sleepless nights. I am exhausted. I am looking forward to dual parenting again and getting a big hug.
4. Inspiration: Okay, I found this Internet café yesterday. Checking it out again this morning, I can tell it will benefit me.
5. Books: Last night, I finished reading, Brothers , by Angela Elwell Hunt. I love when a book refreshes my spirit and gives me a pleasant escape. I picked up this book on a whim at a used bookstore. I really enjoyed it.
6. Sleep: I slept great last night!
7. Kid Moments: I treasure the kid moments of the week. Here are a few of them: getting big hugs, rocking a sick child to sleep, hearing “I love you around the world a million times,” seeing 3 boys being entertained by play-dough for hours, hearing one child encourage another child on his own, and kissing my kids as they sleep.

Monday, October 08, 2007

One Year Ago Today







One year ago today Seth came home from Iraq. I can hardly believe that it has been a year! This year went by so, sooo much faster than the year he was in Iraq. I took some time this morning and looked through our reunion pictures. I can still look at the pictures and feel the emotion. This date reminds me how thankful I am to have my family.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #15




Today Peach’s Thursday Thanks Tank post reminded me not to ‘miss the view.’ So much of the time we miss or forget to focus on life’s blessings. I love this reminder from Ron Hutchcraft: “But taking a timeout to catch your breath, regain your perspective, and appreciate all the good things around you will renew your joy, it will renew your energy, your faith, and your attitude.” I need that daily in my life!
Pressing on, here are my thankful thoughts for today.

1. Silence. After a morning full of my expressive 2 year old, I am so glad it is naptime. I am thankful this guy is sleeping!



2. Smooth Transitions: My family is in a season of transitions. The latest is Thomas moving out of the crib into a bed. Hop over to my Owen Home blog to see pictures (where he is much cuter than in his temper tantrum moments of today).
3. Coffee/Bible Study Group: I am so thankful to have been invited to meet weekly with a small group of women. My new friend that is organizing the group is also organizing childcare. It is amazing!
4. Parents that will Travel: I am so thankful that my parents are planning to come out to help us when Elisabeth is born. They are so flexible and willing to do whatever we need.
5. Being a Parent: Sometimes it is such a tough job. Still, I am so glad that I get to be a parent. This week my oldest went to a cub scout meeting, my youngest moved into a bed, and my middle child keeps telling me I am “the best.” Each day is special (sometimes I forget to remember that).
6. Fall: I love the fall colors in the trees, the cooler breeze, seeing pumpkins, and getting to enjoy my husband’s obsession with college football.
7.Grace: I find that I am not always saying and thinking what I need to be. My attitude isn’t always positive. I am thankful that God gives me grace each day. I am thankful that he is faithful to me when I am not faithful.

I am going to stop my list because that’s really all the time I have right now. I hope you have a wonderful day. Be sure to say thank you to someone today!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Pregnancy Update



A couple of weeks ago I had the normal pregnancy glucose test. My results from that came back high. Yesterday I had to do a 3 hour glucose test. It was tedious for me because I cannot stand to have my blood taken. I had to fast for 8 hours (not too big of a deal since I went first thing in the morning and the fasting was at night). Then, I went in and the lab drew blood. I drank the sugary solution (not sure what that stuff is-- I suppose I could look it up but if you have every been pregnant you probably know what I am talking about) and then they took my blood every hour.

I am thankful (oh so very thankful) to say that I found out today that my lab work came back normal and that I do not have gestational diabetes. I took the whole thing as a wake up call to start eating less sugar. I changed my diet a bit from the 1st test to the 2nd and I could tell a difference in how my body felt.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #14


Today I had some trouble writing my list. I was tempted to forgo the Thursday Thanks Tank exercise and I realized that I must need it more than ever. I am pressing on…cultivating that grateful heart. Here are my thankful thoughts for this day.

1. You: Each and everyone one of you that read my blog. I always smile when a friend says they read something on my blog. I blog because it is fun and I sure appreciate you reading my thoughts. I appreciate your friendship.
2. Calling a dear Friend: I am not the best at phone time. I made time this week to call a dear friend of mine that I haven’t seen in years. The time was so refreshing! I am thankful that I made time for the call. (And, I need to do that more often.)
3. Children playing well together: Every mom knows this needs no explanation. I had a nice afternoon where the boys played well together.
4. Healthcare: It is so wonderful to find good doctors and dentists. I had to have some dental work done this week. I am thankful that I found a very caring and Christian dentist.
5. Sunshine and 70’s: We have had beautiful weather this week. I love the warmth of the sun when the temperatures are pleasant. It is so refreshing.
6. Music: Music can be soothing, refreshing, and uplifting. It has blessed me several times this week. It was especially calming to be sitting in the dentist’s chair listening to the local Christian radio station.
7. Honesty: It is incredible to have a friend with whom you can share your heart. It is amazing to be able to be real and share struggles and be honest with each other without hesitation.

I am thankful for so much more than this.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Family Friendly Flights Act

If you recall, I was astounded by the in-flight movie on our flight back East to visit family. My sister passed on information to me today about the Family Friendly Flights Act. The bill calls for airlines to create a kid-friendly zone on airplanes. The bill was proposed by Democratic Rep Heath Shuler and Repulican Rep Walter Jones, both from North Carolina. In one article I read, Jones was quoted as saying, "This legislation will be one avenue to help parents take back their right to determine appropriateness of content to which their children are exposed."

Beyond the article my sister forwarded me, I found this NY Times article that specifially mentions the movie Fracture that was shown on our flight. (Of course the Continental rep claims that the movie shown is an edited one. Whether it was or wasn't, what I saw was not appropriate for my kids.)

I couldn't be more thrilled about the new legislation. Of course, I have to hope it will get passed and that the airline prices for a kid friendly section aren't higher than regular coach. At the least it is good to know that there are concerned parents out there and congressmen that care!

(Thank you, Carrie, for passing this info on!)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #13


I enjoy Thursday mornings because I take the time to write down my thankful thoughts. This morning I am thankful for all of the little things in my life that bring me joy. Here are my happy thoughts for today:

1. Coffee in the morning
2. Spending one on one time with the boys: Playing Checkers with Jonathan, Blowing bubbles with Thomas, and Playing the Pop-up Pirate Game with David
3. Watching a funny movie with my husband (We watched RV, which made me really think about our long term camping plans!)
4. Having a playdate at a new friend's house
5. Reading a book
6. Seeing my 6 year old get excited about learning to read
7. Candles
8. Baking

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Words for Wednesday

"Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones." Proverbs 16:24

I read these words yesterday and they are weighing heavy on my mind. They are such a good reminder how much of an impact our words have on others. I am trying to remember that pleasant words are powerful. I am trying to focus on positive thoughts, words, and tenderness right now. After all, if pleasant words can be sweet to the soul and heal the bones, surely (after some period of time) they can encourage my boys to be kind to each other!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Saturday, September 15, 2007

I am thankful and proud

Today we cross a milestone for our family. September 15 is Seth's official end date of his army career. I must say that we both have so many feelings associated with this milestone. For him, it is a change in a choosen career path, it is letting go of military terminology and prestige, it is not wearing a uniform to work, and it is a loss of the military comradery. This is a decision that took hours, days and months of soul searching and prayer. It was a decision that was not made lightly. Seth is confident that he is where he wants to be. The practical parting happened about a month ago when he went on 'terminal leave' and took a new job. Still, this date marks a letting go for him. It is really hard to put into words what it is for me.

I have had so many feelings this last month that I didn't expect. I didn't realize I would feel as if a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. I didn't expect to feel a different joy about being together as a family. I have shared with Seth that it almost made me feel guilty to feel so happy to be out. I didn't ever long to be out of the Army life. Oh, I can't say that I didn't ever wish I wasn't going through the Army trials (deployments, especially) but I always felt confident about my role as an Army wife. I loved supporting him and being in a position to support the military. Army (or all military) spouses are in a special position. They have a special strength. I am thankful that I got to grow in that role. Military spouses have to be strong. I know some have been taken to their breaking point and have asked their spouses to get out. That was not my feeling. All I truly wanted or want, is for my husband to be happy and to be where he believes he should be. Some days I still find it unbelieveable that he choose a new career. But, I do find an amazement at the joy and comfort I feel knowing that he will not deploy and he is not training for war. I will always honor and support the military. For now, I am thankful that we are living (as a friend of mine in TN put it) a "normal life."

I thankful for my husband's Army career and I am so proud. I am proud of Seth for what he was able to do in the Army. He was an amazing officer. He led his soldiers by serving them. He treated his missions with utmost importance and he did everything with a high regard for the people he was working with. In addition, he never made my feelings seem unimportant. He was able to work at his job with all his heart and giving love and support to his family. As an Army officer, he made me so proud. I am proud to be his wife.

Seth took the time to chronicle some of the highlights of our Army life on his blog. If you can, hope on over to Popping Smoke to read about the last 10 years.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #12


I hope you are having a great day. My morning is starting off relatively quiet so I am going to try to get my thankful thoughts down before the house gears up with noise.

Here are a few of the things I am thankful for this week:

1. Church: We visited a church in our new community on Sunday. It was a blessing to be back in church. Everyone was so kind and friendly. It was such a reminder that we are all (no matter your location) a part of a much bigger church.
2. Eating at Home: After traveling, moving and just having a totally chaotic home, I have gotten back into the swing of cooking our meals each night. (I am so tired of fast food!) Nothing tastes better than homemade food (even if it is my own). My kids have even been extra complimentary.
3. A Prayer Calendar: This week, I found this Calendar and I am thrilled with how it is giving me a direction to pray for my kids.
4. Starbucks Coffee: I know, how many times can I be thankful for this?? But wait, I was at the only Lebanon Starbucks (at Safeway) last night and I asked if the barista new if we would be getting another Starbucks in town. According to her, we should be getting a DRIVE-THRU Starbucks – possibly in about 6 months. I am so, so thankful!!
5. Problem Free Bus Riding: Jonathan has been riding the bus for 5 days now. He was very nervous and I was very nervous. It has gone smoothly.
6. My Parents: My parents celebrated their anniversary this past week. I am so incredibly thankful for them and their dedication to each other.
7. Finding a Doctor: I went to the doctor last Friday. My pregnancy is going well but I was quite nervous about finding a doctor once we moved. I am so thankful that I feel at ease with the new doctor and clinic.
8. Nights with my Hubby: One of my favorite parts of the day is at night when I sit around and just talk to my husband.
9. Flowers: I have a few flowers right now (in my bedroom, in a pot on my table outside, and some day lilies in our yard). I am enjoying their beauty this week.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

What makes us want to stay on Earth?

I hope just the title of this post caught your eye. Please hop on over to Especially Heather - Question #1 to see what Heather had to say on the topic. She opened her blog up to questions from her readers. Her answer on this was profound and thought provoking. After you check it out, take a minute and lift Heather up in prayer. Her writings have been touching me for a while now. I want to share her site with you and ask you to be in prayer for her and her family.

Monday, September 10, 2007

This Comic's Too True

This comic reminded me of my house of boys! (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #11


I began my day thinking about this post and concentrating on being thankful. Now it is pretty late but I wanted to share a few items from the list I made this morning. I was fortunate to have an opportunity to journal this morning about being thankful. I'd encourage you to do that--make a list of what you are thankful for-- even if it is just a mental note.
Here are a few things I am thankful for today:

1. The Psalms: Even when I don’t feel thankful, the Psalms have a way of putting everything into perspective. (Psalms 56:10 For great is your love, reaching to the heavens, your faithfulness reaches to the skies.)
2. Kindness: Kind people are so refreshing. It doesn't matter if it is from a stranger or a good friend, kindness is uplifting.
3. Unsolicited Gratitude from my Children: Whenever my kids offer a compliment without being encouraged to do so, my heart feels quite happy.
4. Teachers: It amazes me how much work teachers put in just to prepare to teach. I am thankful for Jonathan's teacher.
5. Back to School Shopping: I am thankful I had the opportunity to take Jonathan out shopping because it allowed us some valuable one on one mom son time. It was obvious he appreciated it and I really enjoyed seeing him shine from getting my attention.
6. Kicks, Aches and Pains: This sweet child of mine moves all the time! She is very busy growing, kicking and moving. I am really not sure what she is doing in my womb... wow, it is wearing on my body! But, I am very, very thankful to feel her moving.
7. Email: I have had several friends email me lately. I am so thankful for the ease of email. (Bear with me, I will email you back. I have just become slow at email lately.)
8. Bubble Baths: No explanation necessary.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Packed Lunch




Jonathan started first grade today. I didn't expect it to be as big of a deal for me as it was. After all, kindergarten breaks the school milestone. Seth and I were really nervous last night and this morning. Most of our concerns were about Jonathan being in a new school where he wasn't confident about the procedures or expectations. He had so many questions for me yesterday that I couldn't answer. As I tried to reassure him that his teacher would tell him what to do, I wondered how he would handle his uncertainty. Jonathan seems to thrive on knowing the rules, expectations and being early. Anyway, Jonathan got to class just fine (though we were in and out of the building trying to figure out where we were supposed to be). We were plenty early. When I came to pick him up, I wondered if he would be out front. I told him I wondered if he knew where to go and he casually said, "Oh, I didn't but I figured you would pull up to get me." (He was, of course, in line with a group of kids with adult supervision and direction.) The day went great! One of the more exciting things for Jonathan is that this year he gets to go to school all day. Last year he was in half day kindergarten (which is pretty standard out here - or at least in WA and OR). Today was a half day because every Wednesday is an early release day. The difference between this half day and all of last year is that he ate lunch at school. He was very excited to use his new lunch "box." In fact, as he was eating breakfast he jumped up from the table and pulled the lunch out to see what he was going to have. I grabbed the camera as quick as possible. It was adorably cute to see him so excited but it was even more meaningful to me as a mom. As I was packing the lunch, I was blown away by the "packed lunch milestone." I packed my first packed lunch for one of my children! I had never even thought about packing lunches for my kids- or at least how it would feel. It was fun! I think I was totally cheesy about the whole thing-- taking extra joy in packing a pirate napkin and lego fruit snacks. Am I the only mom who has been surprised by this milestone? Am I the only mom that gets sentimental about these things?! It doesn't matter. It sure made me feel something special as a mom. This is a big week for me (and maybe Jonathan, too!). Today was his first day of 1st Grade. Tomorrow is his first full day of school. Friday will be his first day riding the bus (though he is trying to convince me to let him wait until next week). No doubt, I will have the digital camera on hand at all times!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #10


Here are some things I am thankful for today:

1. Jonathan is cast-free!! He got his cast off on Tuesday. I am thankful that the appointment went well and that his arm is healing correctly. I am very thankful for my friend that let us stay are her house and watched the youngest boys during the appt.
2. Smooth Traveling: We (the boys and I) drove back up to WA on Monday for Jonathan’s doctor appointment and then drove home to OR on Tuesday. It was a bit challenging for me being pregnant, driving that way and entertaining the boys. The boys were great! We even got stuck in some significant Portland traffic and the boys were able to handle long trip with minimal complaining.
3. My husband’s attitude: Truth be told, I back into something at a rest area on my trip. I was not happy. It was a bit emotional for me. Despite the dent and scratches on my bumper, my husband was very, very gracious and only said kind words to me.
4. Friendly Neighbors: We have had several people come and introduce themselves. We have even had 2 neighbors bring homemade goodies. I have been quite surprised by this outpouring of kindness. It feels like southern hospitality (and I am not in the South!). In all of our moving around (this is the 5th state), we have never had welcoming neighbors bringing treats. It speaks well for small town living in Oregon.
5. My Pantry: For the first time, I am enjoying a real pantry. It is so nice to have a pantry! I think that I occasionally just open the door an look in to see how much space I have for my food. (In the last place, my food was spread in different cabinets throughout the kitchen, depending on where I needed to put the pans and dishes.)
6. Company: On our first day in our house (moving day), we had 2 WA friends that just happened to be in OR. They drove an extra 45 minutes + (with the slight getting lost detour) just to welcome us in our new home. We have different friends that are coming this weekend. I am so excited to have them here and David is really thrilled to have guests for his birthday. In a few weeks some more WA friends will be in OR and are going to spend the night. I AM SO thankful for company! It is making my transition easier for sure.
7. Starbucks at Safeway: Okay, those of you that know me, know about my Starbucks addiction. (By the way, I attribute the addiction to CO and my friend Amy.) I am thankful for Safeway stores having Starbucks… and I am concentrating on the positive side of that since the only Starbucks in our little town is in the Safeway. All prices aside, looks like I will be a loyal Safeway shopper!
8. Prayer: I am thankful that I was reminded this morning (while in prayer) that I can turn over my stress in prayer.
9. Our new home: We are enjoying our new house. Head on over to the Owen Home blog to check out a picture.


This is my thankful list for today. Don't forget to do the same: Take a minute to be thankful today. Write down your blessings if you can and don't be afraid to share them with others!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #9



I have a Thankful heart for little and big things. Here are just a few of the things I am thankful for today:

1. A good night’s sleep: Last night I went to be at 9:30! This is quite an accomplishment for me. I got 9 hours of sleep. It was fantastic and very needed. I feel much better today than I have for many, many days.
2. A nice cool breeze: The breeze is really nice to have on moving day.
3. Friends: I cannot stop feeling thankful for my friends. One day soon I will blog more in depth about some special ways my friends have blessed me. Right now I am very thankful for my friends who are always offering their help. I don’t even have to ask these friends – they offer before I ask. Thank you Kim and Michele for watching the boys during the moving days. I appreciate it SO much! And, thank you to my other friends who offered help if I need it. I know I could call and have more help in an instant.
4. Our Church: I cannot put into words how thankful I have been for our church here in WA. I am sad to leave it. I am thankful for the people there. I am thankful that my 3 year old has been asking all week about church (sometimes several times a day). We have missed church a bunch lately due to traveling back East and getting ready to move. I keep hearing, “Hey momma, wwwwwheeeen are we going to go to church?” I am thankful for that question coming from my sweet 3 year old.
5. My House: I am thankful for the new house we are buying. However, this morning I was thinking about how thankful I am for this house that I am leaving. When we were offered the place, my husband had just found out he had orders to go to Iraq and my youngest was a month or so old. I remember thinking, ‘Why would I want to move with a 2 month old?’ I am so thankful for this house. We had so much more space and it has been a wonderful place to be for the last 2 years. I am thankful that our friend let us rent it and has been extremely accommodating these last few months as we were job hunting and getting ready to leave.
6. My husband: He has been working so hard. I am so thankful for him and everything he is doing. I am thankful for his love, his patience, his diligence with his new job and the move. (We are almost there, honey!)


Sunday, August 12, 2007

In-Flight Movie

Anyone been flying with kids lately? We just flew with our three boys (6,3, and 2). It was challenging at times but the boys did really well. On our last flight (which was close to 4 hours), there was an in-flight movie. I was a bit shocked and surprised at the selection. The movie shown was "Fracture." It features Anthony Hopkins and Ryan Gosling. Here's the summary from Netflix: "Anthony Hopkins stars in this legal thriller as Ted Crawford, a man who allegedly attempted to murder his wife and is now locked in a battle of wits with an assistant district attorney, Willy Beachum (Ryan Gosling). The D.A.'s convinced Crawford has blood on his hands, but Crawford is freed on a technicality, sending Beachum on an obsessive mission to prove Crawford's guilt -- even if he has to bend the law to make his case."
The movie is rated R. Now, I am not for censorship. I understand the airline has a right to show what they want to show. I know that many parents let their kids watch movies that I wouldn't let mine watch. All that said, this was a terrible choice for an in-flight movie. I imagine 80 percent of the movie was uninteresting to kids. However, in one of the first scenes of the movie, the main character (Ted) shoots his wife at pretty close range in the back of the head. The next image is her laying on the floor with blood all around her head. This really bothered me. You don't have to have the airline supplied headphones to understand and process that image. I believe my kids were engrossed in their own activites. But, I was stunned. What a poor choice for a movie! I just cannot believe how insensitive it is to the fact that families are flying and not just adults.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Happy Wedding Day Amy and Greg!


Much love to my friend Amy on her wedding day. I know it is a special day and you guys are beautiful. Have fun in Mazatlan, Mexico!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #8



It is now about 11:30 at night and I am just getting a minute to wind down before bed. Even though I am writing late, I have spent a lot of time today thinking about this post. Here's what I am thankful for today:

1. My Massage: Today I went and had a massage. WOW!! I had received a gift certificate for mother’s day and I finally had a chance to use it. I have only had a massage one other time and it was about 5 years ago. This was simply incredible. I usually harbor a lot of stress in my back, shoulders, and neck. The relieved tension there was worth it. Of course, the whole massage was worth it! If you haven’t tried a massage, you really should. What a treat! If you are one of my friends in WA, I’ll pass on the name of the massage therapist. I think she has a gift!
2. Music: There is nothing like hearing a song that brings back memories. My husband found a tape that I had arranged for him years ago (when we were both in HS). He spent some time locating the songs on the internet and built an album. Hearing those songs brings back so many memories. I love how music touches my soul.
3. Family: I had an amazing trip to my hometown to visit family. We had so much fun! I am so grateful we were able to squeeze in the trip. I will be thinking about it for months to come.
4. Friends: I have been reminded a lot lately how many wonderful friends I have. While in TN, a group of friends pulled together a get-together. It was amazing to see everyone. When we left TN (10 years ago!), no one in the group had kids. Now, there were so many kids it was pure joyous chaos. I am thankful for those friends that still enjoy my company. I love them so. Also, last night (the night after returning to WA), some friends of ours here had a Going Away Party for us. I was a bit emotional about that (but I kept it hidden). I was touched by having so many friends come to say “bye” to us. Of course, I really refused to say bye to anyone. Once again, the kids way out-numbered the adults. It was crazy –but wonderful because the kids were so entertained all of the adults got to enjoy each other’s company. Our friends are so precious. I couldn’t be more thankful for ALL my friends located in so many places.
5. Cool Temps: After being (suffering) in TN’s 90 degree weather, I am really thankful for the cool NW temperatures. I haven’t sweat all day!
6. Marriage: Marriage is really on my mind this week. My dearest friend, Amy Jo, is getting married this weekend. I am constantly thinking about her and wishing I could make it to the wedding.
7. Modern Medicine: David had a pretty significant asthma attack while we were on vacation. I am very thankful for how effective his medicine works. David also had a contact reaction to peanuts in the airport. We noticed he was rubbing his eye. His eye got extremely red, the area around his eye began to swell and he had a couple hives under his eye. I am very thankful for allergy visine and Benedryl.
8. My Mother’s Day Gift Certificate: See #1. Man, that massage was awesome!!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #7



I am thankful for my Family. We are visiting our families this week and we are simply having an amazing time. There is nothing like the joy of getting together with parents and siblings and letting all of the cousins play. I am so incredibly thankful for our families and that I am able to spend time with them.



Cousins on the Queen side:




Cousins on the Owen side:


Sunday, July 22, 2007

12 Happy Years

We celebrated our 12th anniversary today. We have had a lot of fun along the way. We still laugh a lot (at each other mostly). I am truly thankful for my marriage.

Seth thinks he still looks the same. I know I don't because I was not 5 months pregnant when we got married!!


Then


















Now

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #6


I haven’t blogged since my last Thursday Thanks Tank. It has been a busy week. I think we may have several busy weeks in the coming weeks!

This Thursday I am thankful for the following:

1. Motivation: I have been surprisingly motivated to clean lately. I am cleaning, organizing and getting rid of unneeded items. My husband suggested I was nesting but I have never nested like this! I told him it is because we are moving and I don’t want to move our junk with us. It is probably some of both but I am thankful to have the energy to do all I am doing.
2. Army Life: I am thankful for the last 10 years (minus a couple months) of Army life. We have been blessed tremendously by our experiences, the people we have met along the way, and the awesome growth and challenges in Seth’s career. Seth is “clearing” this week, going on “terminal leave”, and will be putting on his uniform for one of the last times tomorrow.
3. My Marriage: In a few days, we will celebrate our 12th anniversary. I am thankful for my husband and for the constant support and love he shows me. I am thankful for our commitment to each other.
4. Good Sleep: In comparison to the last items, this seems like a small thing. I am so thankful for last night’s good sleep.
5. Praying with my husband: We are being challenged by the transitions in our lives and the unexpected events (i.e., a broken arm). This morning after just a few sips of coffee I prayed with my husband. There is no better way to start the day—it has filled my heart with joy (so much better that what I usually long for – solitude to wake up or a big breakfast).
6. Friends: I am constantly blessed by friends. I think I will have to start a few posts about how my WA friends have blessed me. For now, for today, I am thankful for the encouragement, prayer, and even babysitting my friends are giving me this week.
7. Thanks Tank Thursdays: I am thankful that I ran across this posting on the With Out Fear blog. It is amazing how it has reminded me to be extremely thankful. I spend much of my Thursday feeling thankful. It encourages me to feel thankful other days, too. This exercise continues to put my heart in the place to recognize blessings. You should do the same! Whether on a blog or in a journal- it really helps to write thankful thoughts down.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #5


*Sigh* I cannot think about much today besides Jonathan. Jonathan fell down our stairs last night and broke his arm. It was a really bad break. I will spare everyone the details. Right when it happened, there was no doubt his arm was broken. He broke both bones in his arm an inch or two above his wrist. He spent about 5 hours at the hospital last night. Then, he had a pain-filled, uncomfortable night of trying to sleep.

My thanks tank for today:

1. No surgery: If the break had been just a bit closer to the wrist or if the broken bones had not been just the way they were, Jonathan was headed for surgery. The doctors really weren’t sure until the Orthopedic bone surgeon came in and did X-rays and was able to set his arm.
2. Seth was in town: Okay, this seems a bit selfish but I am very thankful that Seth was not deployed or traveling.
3. Prayer:This seems like a standard answer for my Thursday Thanks Tank. I was just bathing Jonathan and Seth in prayer last night. Also, I know my family was praying. There is nothing more comforting than that.
4. Cooler Temps: I couldn’t’ be more thankful that the temp dropped significantly today. It was around 99 degree here yesterday. It is not supposed to be that hot in Washington. If it was, all the houses would have air conditioning (most don’t). I think it is only supposed to get in the 80’s today.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Oregon Bound

Some of you have guessed this already (and yes, this is the answer to my State Research post). We are moving to Oregon. Seth is taking a fantastic job with Target (on the distribution side of the company). We are thrilled about the job and the opportunities that go along with it. We are embracing the new adventure of Oregon. I will admit that it was not my first choice of a new location. I am concentrating on the blessing of a great job and a family unit that will not be interrupted by deployments or remote assignments. Please pray for us as we make the transition. Seth could tell you (and might readily) that I have been quite emotional lately. I am attributing some of it to my pregnancy and some of it to how much I had it in my head that we would either be staying put or moving to the SE. We visited Oregon this last weekend. It was a good visit, despite our sick-of-being-stuck-in-the-car, arguing children. It was a nice state, despite finding out that I was told incorrectly that there are Cracker Barrel restaurants there. Again, keep us in your prayers as we have much to do in the coming months. And, by all means, pass on any good info about Oregon!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #4



Okay, it’s late and it has been quite a day! I started the day out exhausted with my body aching from 2 nights of being up way too late for a pregnant woman. The day went from being rough to pleasant. I have so much to be thankful for! I am, however, tired and another day is around the corner. Here’s what I am thankful for this Thursday:

1. Vacation Days: Vacation days are so wonderful. We had a long 4th holiday as my husband had the day before and after off from work. With him off from work, I got some extra time to relax and we had a lot of family fun time.
2. Getting Rid of Clutter: It is so freeing to clean out! We have been working on cleaning out our garage. I am thankful for the joy of having less stuff.
3. Encouragement: I have had several friends and family members encourage me lately. Sometimes a simple word can change my attitude or give me a different outlook.
4. Summer Fun: The last few days I have enjoyed seeing my boys play in the kiddie pool, the slip-n-slide, and the sprinkler. The joy on their faces is delightful to me.
5. Pizza Delivery: I hesitated to write this one… no, I wrote it and then deleted it and now I am back to it. I was really thankful to order pizza tonight and not have to stop cleaning and start cooking. Plus, there wasn’t much clean-up afterwards!
6. My husband: I was worn out- he let me sleep in and brought me breakfast in bed. He took the kids to the park and let me relax into the early afternoon. When I asked for help- he said, whatever you need. Our kids were overtired due to late night 4th activities and he was very patient and understanding.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Change

"Yet, that's the thing about change. It's God's way of surprising us, and reminding us that wherever we go, his blessings go too."

Aline Alexander Newman, Guideposts July 2007

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Jennifer




Happy Birthday, sweet Sis!

My older sister's birthday is today. This week is always such a family week because of July 4th. It is even more so because of the fun memories I have of celebrating my sister's birthday. I wish we lived closer. In fact, I have been quite homesick for the SE lately. More than the geography, I miss my family. I am working on my homesick heart by focusing on having a thankful spirit. I thank God for giving me such a wonderful big sister.

State Research

I have been doing some geography research... Here are some interesting facts-no, these are just questions...
Do you know the answer without looking it up in Google?

What's the 9th biggest state in the US?
What's the 28th most populous state in the US?
What state is the only state to have a design on both sides of its flag?
Which state's state beverage is milk?
Which state's state animal is the beaver?

I'll write more about this interesting state soon.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Thursday Thanks Tank #3



What I am thankful for Today:

1. Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice: I am thankful for my little girl- the one that is constantly kicking in my womb. I truly love feeling her move. It is the sweetest part of pregnancy.
2. My husband: He is working so hard to determine our future. He left today for an out of town job interview. I am thankful for his prayerful heart and for his love of our family.
3. Pregnancy: This sounds like #1 but really its not. I am thankful for a new pregnancy that I just found out about last night. I am so excited for my friend!! I am so thrilled about this pregnancy that has been prayed for and desired for some time! I cannot stop smiling about it.
4. Benedryl, Allergy Visine but no ingested peanuts: I am thankful that David recovered well after his peanut contact. I have had to work on my attitude regarding his allergy but in light of what could have happened, I am so thankful that David did not get any peanut butter in his mouth (see No More Booster Seats for David) and that we have been able to keep him safe.
5. Mentors: I have had the most wonderful mentor mom for the last 3 years in MOPS. We were able to get together last night for dinner and the dinner out was a blessing. I always feel so encouraged by her. Our MOPS relationship has ended-- she went back to work full time and I am stepping out of leadership to have a baby (or maybe move, whichever comes first)—but what I have learned from her will continue to bless me always.
6. Understanding: My boys and I had a last minute invite to a friend’s house yesterday and before we left it was clear my youngest had pink eye and my 2nd child didn’t make it to the potty and peed from the carpet to the kitchen floor. It was not the best mom moment. I was given so much grace. I felt terrible that we left such a mark- and possibly spread conjunctivitis- but my friend was so loving and understanding. That’s the understanding love of a friend!