Thursday, September 9, 2010

Scoundrel to Saint

(I read this on a blog last week and just really loved it. It makes me think of this verse " For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast."Ephesians 2:8-9 and reminds me that apart from Jesus I can do nothing.)

I am a scoundrel
by nature--unworthy of life.

Like Adam my father—I was a sinner by choice.

Like Cain my brother—I was a sinner by birth.

Like Rahab the Harlot—I was a whore.

Like David the King—I was an adulterer and a murderer.

Like Jonah the prophet—I was a runner and a rebel.

Like Peter the rock—I have denied my Lord.

Like Paul the Apostle—I am still the worst sinner I know.

Dead in the guilt of my sin…

Bound in the shroud of my disgrace…

Buried in the grave of my choices...

Sealed in the coffin of my hopelessness…

Forgotten in the despair of my helplessness…

I was dead in my sin—unable to respond.

But God, through the deep love and mercy of His compassion, for His own glory, granted repentance and faith in the gospel of Christ. And by the sacrificial exchange of the Savior on the cross…

I have been raised from the dead!

And Like JesusI am righteous!

In Him I am transformed—from scoundrel to saint, from prostitute to bride, from adultery to faithfulness, from murderer to rescuer, from running to standing firm, from rebel to obedient follower, from rejecting Christ to heralding the gospel, from worst of sinner to best of example…undeserving of it all.

This is grace!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

An Anniversary Story...and fun with Mr Potato Head parts


Today Ryan and I have been married for 4 years! I was excited for the day when I woke up but since we are planning on celebrating tomorrow night I didn't really gear up for any substantial anniversary festivities at all. Little did I know.......that my husband had something else in mind.

Here's the scene: It's 7am and the kids were still tucked away in bed as I quietly begin to assemble Ryan's lunch when he says to me:

"You don't have to make me a lunch today because.......I took the day off!"

WHAT??!!!!!

I actually cannot explain how much joy this gave me. A whole extra day with my love?! Are you kidding me, talk about speaking my love language. But he didn't stop there. The next words out of his mouth were:

"And you have a hair appointment at 9am to get a cut and color."

WHAAAAAAATTTTTT???!!!!!!!

To be completely honest I haven't had my hair done since December and I have literally been dreaming about a few hours in that chair to recharge and feel feminine again. Thank you Mr. Singletary, you are seriously speaking my love language now. If this wasn't enough he then comes at me with :

"Oh and I'm off tomorrow too.!"

Oh my word. BEST ANNIVERSARY PRESENT EVER. The hair is nice icing on the cake but seriously, a four day weekend with my love. Oh man he's good....he even contacted a friend of mine and my sister who I had plans with today and let them in on the secret and canceled our date.

So off I went for many hours of girl talk with my new favorite stylist to be pampered and prettied (Not a real word but I'm going with it) while my sweet husband played with the kids all morning long.

Tonight I am a very happy, very blonde, girl who got a day of pampering and time with my guys that included a whole lot of silliness. Here are some shots from the night..... fun with Mr. Potato Head parts.




Oh and Will is standing up on everything this week! It's really cute, I swear he'll be walking tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Happy Birthday Papa

We love you so much Papa and are so thankful that you were born. Here's a little present for your birthday.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Beautiful Day

Today has been a beautiful day.

Will said Mama for the first time (!!!!!) and my day with the boys was just so, so joyful. I literally had to sing my praises to the Lord at one point today and stretch my arms up to the sky thanking Him for the life and the family that He's given me. I know that everything in my life is not my own doing but His and for that I am so very thankful. I can take no credit, it's all the Lord and it's all because of Jesus.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

It's been awhile....

We have been crazy busy (mostly for good reasons) lately which means I have not had any time to post pictures or blog at all, sorry folks. So here are some pictures and a couple videos of what we've been up to.

Enjoy!'

2010-07-31

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Fly to Jesus

I posted a week or so ago about Joshua Harris' mom who was dying of cancer. I've followed his blog for some time now and have really loved his writing so in a strange way I feel connected to him and his family. I've prayed for his mom when he asked for prayer and smiled when I read of her faith in Jesus.

All that to be said, on July 4th is seems that the Lord finally put an end to Sono Harris' life here on earth and brought her home. Here's the post on Joshua Harris' blog with a beautiful picture of his mom included.

I was both sad and happy when I read this post and reminded of my Dad's death more than six years ago and a song that always brings me back to that time.

The song is called "Come to Jesus" and the version that I love is sung by Chris Rice. This song is basically about the life a Christian from beginning to end. The last bit of the song is just the words "Fly to Jesus" sung over and over and is speaking of the physical death of a believer. This song was played at the Easter church service I attended the week my dad passed and was such a gift from the Lord for me at that time.

So, Sono Harris has flown to Jesus and although I am brokenhearted for her family I am tearfully overjoyed for her.

Here's the song if you want something really beautiful to listen to:

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Jesus Paid It All

I just read this post on Joshua Harris' blog and am just so thankful for my savior. Please read of a beautiful woman (his Mom) dying with grace and comfort knowing that soon she will be with her savior.

When from my dying bed
My ransomed soul shall rise,
“Jesus died my soul to save,”
Shall rend the vaulted skies.

And when before the throne
I stand in Him complete,
I’ll lay my trophies down,
All down at Jesus’ feet.

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sweet Things

Here are a few sweet things that have happened in the past week with my boys.

1) James actually saying "Happy Father's Day Daddy" to Ryan on Sunday. This was followed by a hug and a sweet smile.

2) Will has teeth! Two little teeth have pushed their way through on the bottom. So sweet.

3) Will claps! In the past week Will has started clapping, especially when I come into the room, so sweet.

4) Today James bit his tongue and asked me to kiss it. Although I was reluctant, I couldn't say no to his sweet face sticking out his tongue, so I gave him a quick kiss. After kissing his tongue he looked me right in the eyes and said "All better." A little gross but mostly sweet.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day

Just read this beautiful Father's Day post and had to share. Please read it and enjoy.

Happy Father's Day.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Pre-Father's Day Post

I heard this song on the radio the other day and I immediately felt that lump in my throat and tears well up in my eyes. This song made me think of my sweet husband and his God given role as the leader of our family. I love this song because it's actually a prayer coming from the heart of a husband and father, appealing to the heart of our Heavenly Father.



Ryan is far from perfect as a husband and father but his desire is to lead us well. His desire is to love me and the boys well and point us always to the cross, to Jesus. For this I am so completely thankful.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Something beautiful on an otherwise difficult day.....

Here are those pictures of our mantel that I promised. I thought it would be nice to post something pretty on a day like today. We are grieving with friends today over the loss of their son. Please pray for them and their children.




"Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep." Romans 12:15

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Decor

I am not typically a super creative person but there is a little creative juice running through these veins and lately it's flowing.

I am just about finished with a design project for our mantel that I'll post later (when I can get around to taking pictures) and now I'm thinking about making something like this to hang above our dining room table. What do you think?

I would probably do it in different colors, maybe greens, blues and whites.

Along with these smaller changes we are about to embark on some more decor changes that I am beyond excited about. New paint, new furniture configuration, new furniture (if the Goodwill has some goodies for us soon) and LOTS OF COLOR!

I have been living in a neutral world for way too long and it's time for a change.

Pictures to come.....

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Baseball Game!

This week we took the boys to their very first major league baseball game. Here are some photos from the game.

2010-06-05

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Trader Joe's Angel

Being a mom is hard work. I feel like a big old failure on most days but every once in awhile there is a little victory or I have a moment where I know I'm doing the right thing, even if it's hard, embarrassing (since most hard moments are in public) and/or downright frustrating. Today I had one of those moments.

So we're at Trader Joe's and James has a melt down because I won't let him carry the basket. I explain that he can't carry it because he's dragging it on the floor and hitting people's feet. This doesn't go well. I'm, by the grace of God, calm and able to keep my emotions under control, however the same does not go for my son.

You know that kid you see in a store every once in awhile who is crying and screaming on the floor with everyone staring right in his general direction? That's us.

Somehow I get him to follow me to the cash register but he is still crying and people are still staring. So the well meaning man behind the cash register offers to give him a balloon (Probably to quiet him down.) but I quietly decline and say "Thank you so much but no thank you, I can't reward his behavior."

So here I am feeling like a really lousy mom, even though I know that I'm doing the right thing, when this sweet older gentleman (the Trader Joe's Angel) looks at me and says: "You're doing the right thing, most mom's don't get it but your teaching him a good lesson." Cue lump in throat.

I try not to cry and just say something like "Thank you so much, it's hard." and stare down at the floor all the while praising God inside for this little old man. I don't know for sure that he was an angel but today he sure felt like one so I am thanking the Lord for him and his kind words.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Grace

Today I am so very thankful for Grace. I am thankful that there is nothing I can do to earn God's love or his forgiveness but that it is a free gift that He gave to me when I accepted and believed in His son as my Lord and Savior, my Jesus.

Today I am just leaning on these two verses and repenting to the Lord for my sinful pride and resting in the knowledge that it is forgiven and that he is working on my heart, changing me in his time, weeding out that pride and teaching me how to love.

"For by Grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast." Ephesians 2:8

"In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world." John 16:33

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010

Dancing Big Boy

Here's something to brighten up your Monday morning.

Friday, May 14, 2010

30

Today my Ry is 30 and I am beyond thankful for him.

Thank you Lord for these past 30 years, of which I have been around for 10, and please give my Ry and I at least 30 more together with you.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Recent photos.

Here are some shots from the past couple weeks.

2010-04-30

Friday, April 30, 2010

Monday, April 19, 2010

Olive Oil

One of the many reasons why I love my husband is that he does the little things that are so big to me.

Today I go to grab the olive oil while I'm making dinner and remember that the bottle we have by the oven needs to be re-filled. I have a moment where I feel deflated and defeated because I remember that the BIG Costco jug of olive oil is in the garage (our pantry) downstairs and I am tired, watching two kids and not in the mood to run down and up again just for two tablespoons of oil. Ugh!

Then, like a beautiful gift wrapped in shiny paper I look at the bottle next to the oven and I literally almost cry.

My wonderful husband who knows how much I hate to re-fill the olive oil bottle had filled it to the brim (probably the night before) without saying a word to me. This sweet little gesture, this seemingly inconsequential act of kindness has put the wind back in my sails and made me fall in love with him all over again.

Thank you my Ry for the big and the small.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Jamesease

James is TALKING! This kid decided about a month ago that he would give sentences a whirl and since then he has been on a tear. I love hearing James talk, I love hearing what's on his mind but most of all I love hearing his little version of English, I call it Jamesease . Here are some of my favorites lately.

1) Anything with an -er ending becomes -ees. Example: Water = Watees, Otter = Ottees. Greatest example ever from our trip to the zoo. "Otees swim in da watees." Seriously, can you handle that cuteness?!

2) Instead of yummy I started telling him awhile back that things are delicious. James decided this was his new favorite word to describe food so everyday I hear "Deyicious milk. Mmm toast, deyicious." and yesterday he licked my hand (yeah the licking is a whole other story all together) and I heard "Deyicious Mommy." He's a little gross but I still love that kiddo!

3) Every night before bed Ryan reads James the "Animal book" which is basically an animal encyclopedia with lots of color pictures of animals. So from time to time Ryan isn't home to put James to bed and I have to do it instead, which means I have to do animal book time too. So last night I'm reading the animal book with James (which means flipping through the pages and pointing out the animals we know and talking about them) and he points to a picture of a mommy mouse with a bunch of baby mice and he says in the cutest voice ever "Ohhhhh, baby mouse!" Ok I will have to get this on video so you can get the full effect but it was flippin' hilarious!

4) Avocado (Which he loves and eats straight for some strange reason even though he won't touch mac-n-cheese, crazy kid!) is pronounced "Avacadi" in Jamesease.

5) Everything is "sea-e" which is Jamesease for silly. Mommy is silly, baby is silly, Daddy is most definitely silly and I'm guessing tomorrow his toast will both be deyicious and sea-e.

6) "Fick-a da road." So there was some construction going on below our house last week and a ton of road paving vehicles (steam rollers, dump trucks, cement mixers - the works!) were down there paving and rolling the road flat. So Ryan thought it would be fun to take James down to see all the trucks up close and personal as well as the police car that was parked nearby. When the guys came back home all James could tell me was that the _____(insert cool truck name here) was "fick-a da road". Now every time we see a cement mixer or a dump truck I hear "dump cuck (truck) ficka-da road" because of course they must all be fixing the road, right?

Ok that's all I got for now. I know there are a ton more James quotes that would have you on the floor but it's late and this Mama is tired. Nigh, nigh.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Boo Boy

I am in love with this face.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Joy and Peace

I love it when I am reading my bible and the Lord just gives me a verse, a verse that I wasn't looking for but that speaks to me as soon as I lay eyes on it.

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace
in BELIEVING, so that by the power of the
Holy Spirit you may abound in hope." Romans 15:13

The back story on why this verse means so much to me today is far too weighty to explain right now but let's just say it's been a rough couple of weeks. Outside of the day to day difficulties I've been wading through some sin in my life and laying low at the foot of the cross asking Jesus to forgive me and soften my heart. As always, he is faithful to those who love him so we're getting through it but it isn't always easy.

Anyhow, for the past couple days it has felt like a new day. Jesus has lifted the burden of my sin off of my shoulders and gladly taken it upon himself and I am truly filled with JOY and PEACE. I have so much hope today in Jesus and his saving Grace. I want this verse to forever be written on my heart to remind me that the ONLY true joy I can ever experience comes first from the Lord, from knowing my Jesus.

"The one thing I ask of the Lord
the thing I seek most—
is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
delighting in the Lord’s perfections
and meditating in his Temple." Psalm 27:4

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Easter 2010 and then some.

Too tired to write so here are a few shots from our past week and a half(ish).

2010-04-10

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Lighten up!

It's come to my attention that I need to LIGHTEN UP!!

I have been way too serious and contemplative recently and today I need a break from myself and my thoughts. Soooo, Will's in bed for his morning nap and James and I are going to have a picnic on the floor, watch "Cars Moomie" (Cars Movie) eat buttered toast, milk and a huge stack of chocolate cookies. Heck we might even stay in our PJs and have a movie marathon all day.

Have a good day and please LIGHTEN UP along with me. Here's a photo to help get you started with a smile.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Monday, March 29, 2010

Birthday Weekend

Here are a some photos from our weekend.

2010-03-29

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Can you say CUTE!

I love this boy so much it hurts. Look at this sweet face, don't you just want to kiss him!







And this kid's pretty darn cute too.

Friday, March 26, 2010

The name we gave you

To James Ryan Singletary,

A note from Dad on how you got your name:

Two years ago today we named you James Ryan Singletary. The Singletary part was a given. We came by James quite easily too, the day we found out you were a boy, in fact. It was in the elevator leaving the doctor's office where an ultrasound image had just shown us a little more of who you were. Your mom looked at me and asked, "So, do we have a James?" I replied, "Yes." (We might have discussed it a little before then, just in case you turned out to be a boy.) Ryan, as your middle name, came down to the wire, narrowly edging out Robin. (Sorry Papa.)

Here's a little more about why we named you what we did, and what it means to us. We pray that over time your name will come to mean much to you too:

Singletary is our family name. I, Ryan Dale, got if from my dad, Robin Dale, your papa. He got it from his dad, Richard Edward, my grandpa, your "gate gampa" (great grandpa). It is also shared by my uncle, your great uncle, Dirk Ryan Singletary, Papa's brother. There are many other Singletary men, but these are all that I've ever known.

As you now can see, Ryan is a family name too. It is Irish in origin, like much of our family, and means "kingly" or "little king".

James is a biblical name, the Greek version of the Hebrew "Jacob" meaning supplanter, or one who follows. No, we didn't specifically want to call you "supplanter." Rather, we named you after a particular James of the Bible, an Apostle of Jesus Christ who wrote the New Testament book that bears his name. It is a wonderful book filled with encouragement,
"Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him." (James 1:2-5)
wisdom,
"Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God." (James 1:19)
and guidance,
"Draw near to God and he will draw near to you." (James 4:8a)

We also named you after some of the men from Nana's side of the family. Her father, my grandpa, your great grandpa, was James Bernard Reeder. I knew him as "Grandpa Big Jim." His only son, Nana's brother, my uncle, your great uncle, is James Russell Reeder. To me he is "Uncle Jimmy."

Finally, we so liked the way it sounded. Strong and confident like we pray you will be. Like we strive to aid you in becoming.

We gave you the best name we could, for the best reasons we had: After James of the Bible who bore witness to God's son, Jesus, followed Him, and wrote about Him so that we might believe in faith, and be saved by His grace. After your family, who came before you and loved you, even before you were born. And for you to have always. To honor and uphold. To build a legacy upon. Draw near to God, through Jesus, by His Holy Spirit, and He will make it so. And one day, may you pass your name on better than you received it!

I pray this for you, James Ryan, my beloved son, on your second birthday. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Love, Dad

2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



James you are my sweet boy and today you are 2! I can't believe this is even possible. I feel like it was just yesterday that we were coming home from the hospital with a little eight pound bundle and now you're my "30 pounds of love," as I so often call you.

As a 2 year old boy there are so many things that I love about you, too many to write, but here are a few for you to read when you're a big man so you can have a little glimpse into the two year old you.

I love how you laugh and giggle, especially at lunch time when we sing made-up songs and cheers our milk.

I love your sweet spirit and your strong will and I am excited to see who you will be when you are a man.

I love how much you love your brother and how you're learning to be soft and gentle with him....even if you still try to sit on his head from time to time. ;-)

I love how you love Daddy too. I love how you and Daddy can sit for an hour building a Lego tower and somehow communicate in a Lego language that I think only boys understand.

I love how you so often run up to me, wrap your arms around my leg and say "HUG!"

I love that when I kiss you goodnight and whisper "I love you so much" in your ear, you whisper it back. You are a really sweet whisperer.

I love that when it's sunny outside and we go for a walk you will shout "Hi shadow!" because your Daddy taught you about shadows and now you love them.

I love that you ask me to sing the "Worship You" song and the "Honey" song and at the end of every verse you sing along.

I also love that you know the words to "Poncho and Lefty" and "How Deep the Father's Love For Us" because you sing them with Daddy before bedtime.

I love how much you love cars, trains, airplanes and anything else with a motor. Maybe someday you'll be a mechanic.

I love you my sweet 2 year old boy. Thank you for making me a mommy, this has been the hardest and most incredible journey of my life.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Yesterday

Yesterday was a hard day. I was cranky, certain individuals who shall remain nameless but who also live in my house and are under 4 feet tall were cranky and the combination of the two was a little disastrous.

I kept going from annoyed, to angry to sorrowful and guilty for how I'd been angry and annoyed, and then back to annoyed again. After a really crazy morning of me behaving like a two year old and my two year old behaving like a two year old I decided we needed to get out of the house! Change of scenery, maybe that would make it all better.

At the little park by our house James was in heaven, running and playing in the sun was exactly what he needed but me, not so much. My heart was still hard towards the world, towards James, towards the role of motherhood, towards pretty much everything. Then two things happened.

1) One of my good friends sent me a text message with this verse in it.

"The LORD your God is with you,
he is mighty to save. "
Zephaniah 3:17

It hit me like a Mack truck, the Lord my God is with me, like right now, in this moment when I am so frustrated. He is with me and wants to comfort and help me BUT I have to turn to him. I have to run straight to him and he will be mighty to save me from a dark day and from myself. He will bear my burden but I have to allow him to, I have to give it him, ask Jesus to carry me through.

2) Then James walked up to me and handed me these and said "Flowers pitty (pretty) Mommy."


Yes, yes they are, and you are a sweet boy. You are a sweet boy who is learning, a child who has folly bound up in his heart and it is my job to love you and teach you with kindness on my tongue, not frustration and anger.

So I praise the Lord for his word and the truth that it brings to my life and I praise the Lord for my sweet son who is learning right along with me.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Verse of the day

This is a verse that I am really thinking about, praying over and repeating today.

"We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies." 2 Corinthians 4:8-10

Monday, March 22, 2010

NO!

Today James discovered that he can say No. To me. His mom. Oh brother!

Here are a few examples:

ME: James can you please come over here so I can change your diaper?
JAMES: No. (Without even looking up from his toy.)

ME: James please stop lying on your brother.
JAMES: No.

ME: James do you want some ABC cookies?
JAMES: No......cookies? ABC? Yesh.

So he hasn't quite got the hang of being 2 yet but he's getting there.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Our week in Pictures

Here are a few shots from the past week along with a video of James opening his birthday present from Dodo an Bapa. (We let him open it early because we both really wanted to play with it too.)


2010-03-18

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patricks Day!

One year ago today I handed Ryan a St. Patrick's day card (Which should have tipped him off that something was up because I am habitually terrible at giving cards even for the big things like our anniversary.) at the end of the day that said:

Happy St. Patrick's Day Daddy


Love,


The Baby (not James)

So one year ago today marks the announcement of our little Will....who we thought of calling Patrick because of the way he was announced to Daddy and after the real Patrick for which the holiday is named and who said this:


I am a servant of Christ to a foreign nation for the unspeakable glory of life everlasting which is in Jesus Christ our Lord. – Patrick

And just for the history buffs here's a little info on the real Patrick written by our pastor.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Sweet Day

Today was a sweet day.

Morning was cleaning, tickling, music, dancing, eating and more tickling.

Afternoon was Nana visiting, Mommy and Will seeing friends, me being thankful for two of the most amazing friends I have ever known, James having a blast with Nana all to himself, lunch, nap, quiet, bible.

Evening was dinner with my little men, laughing with James, Will making me laugh until I literally started to cry, James looking at me after having a sip of my soda water and saying "I like it! Bubbles are good." Me looking astounded not only at his crazy good sentences but also at the fact that he said I instead of James...he's NEVER done that before!!!! Then an outing for ice cream, pink ice cream from James and brown for Mommy. Back home, teeth brushing, story, cuddling, praying, singing, kisses, night night for boys.

Late evening is making granola because I love it and I'm out, blogging (obviously), reading a hard email, half watching Lost and half being annoyed that it's so confusing, more bible, waiting for my Ry to get home from class.

It's been a long but joyful day.

Sneaky He is Not

James' latest thing is to rat himself out when he is either about to do something that he shouldn't do or has just done something that he shouldn't have done. Here are a few examples from today:

  1. JAMES: "Pokey eyes, Will?" - ME: "No James, you cannot poke Will's eyes."
  2. JAMES: "Sit baby" - ME: "Get off the baby."
  3. JAMES: "Bite Will?" - ME: "No, do not bite Will."
  4. JAMES: "Eat marker" - ME: "No eating markers." Good thing he told me about this one because otherwise I never would have known. ;-)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sweet William

At church we are currently in a sermon series that has us going through the book of Luke. One of the verses that we looked at today was Luke 5:27-28:

"After this he (Jesus) went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax booth. And he said to him, “Follow me.” And leaving everything, he rose and followed him."

I smiled when our pastor read this verse because I was holding my sweet William and this verse means so much to me/us in regards to our baby boy.

You see we didn't plan Will. We weren't thinking of trying for another baby for many months to come so when we found out that we were pregnant it was a surprise. This is why his name is Will, he's God's Will. He is God's Will for our family and we pray that one day he will grow to be a mighty man of God who carries out God's Will.

So that's the first name but the verse really applies to his middle name, Levi. Will's middle name is Levi because of this verse!

Ryan and I pray that all of our kids (those we have and any of those that the Lord might have for us in the future) will love Jesus and glorify God through their lives. So when we were thinking about names for little Will we knew we wanted to give him a name that would always remind him of Jesus.

When Jesus asked Levi to follow him Levi didn't take time to think about it, he didn't weigh his options or ask for a little time to sort out his affairs, instead he literally left EVERYTHING and followed Him. This is what we pray for Will. We pray that he will be a man who is willing to leave everything and sacrifice anything for Jesus. I love that!

So tonight as I put our little man to bed I prayed again that the Lord would save him one day soon and I remembered Levi, who became Matthew and wrote a book of the bible, and who followed Jesus without question.

Friday, March 12, 2010

It's the little things....

Have you ever noticed how sometimes it's the little things in a relationship that make you feel loved the most. Like when someone knows how you take your coffee, or when you're searching around the house for something and your husband hands you exactly what you've been searching for, no words exchanged, he just knew. Or how just a small bunch of simple flowers at the end of a hard day can fill your heart more than any extravagant gift ever could?

Well that's how it is with me and God too. Of course he has done some amazing and big things in my life. Things that blow my mind and bring to my knees in gratitude. But it's the everyday blessings, the small things that remind me of how he is ALWAYS with me and just like the perfect Father that he is, he knows me and loves me so well.

I was talking with a girlfriend about this the other day and I thought of a blessing that I hadn't even noticed until now. A little thing in the grand scope, but something that at the time was such a gift.

What I'm talking about is when James jumped, crashed landed more like, out of his crib a month before Will was born. I was as big as a house and not in the mood to deal with a little stunt man so we took off the crib railing and transitioned James into a big boy bed. At the time I thought it was more of a hassle than a blessing but that's often how I work, not seeing the whole picture until I'm further down the line.

At the time I was also having some anxiety about taking care of James after the c-section, specifically how I was going to pull him in and out of bed during the day when I wasn't supposed to be lifting anything. What I didn't see was that God knew my fear and he had already answered my prayer for help. He had made it so that James was already good and used to his big boy bed before Will ever arrived and even gave James the courage to learn to jump in and out with just a hand from Mommy. No lifting necessary.

What an amazing God we have, right?! It's the little things sometimes.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Wish we lived on a farm....

Sometimes I wish we lived on a farm. Think about it, we could raise our own beef, chicken and whatever else and we'd know that all the animals were taken care of and fed good food, also we'd have a ton of fresh eggs!

If we lived on a farm I think I would also have a huge vegetable garden and maybe even a little orchard with a number of different fruit trees. Oh, oh and a blueberry field! Man I'm getting hungry, can you tell I'm excited about summer produce?

Also if we lived on a farm I would make it mandatory that my guys wear straw cowboy hats and boots because they are practical and also really cute.....especially on that Daddy guy. Oh and if we lived on a farm I would make sure that my little guys wore overalls at least twice a week because who doesn't love a little guy in overalls. I'm a sucker for a little man in overalls....


...and a sleepy baby boy.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

5 Things That I Loved About Today

1) Going to Mare's new house and dreaming about growing tomatoes in her backyard. Thank you Marilee for offering me a small plot of land.

2) Letting James hold Will on the couch and hearing James exclaim "Cute!" as he looked down at his baby brother.

3) Will's toothless smile.

4) Watching James fall in love with his brother. Today it became so clear to me how much James adores Will. From the innumerable times James asked to hold Will, to the sweet bath they took together, to the request that James made to have his baby brother lie down in bed with him before night, night just to snuggle and giggle with Will. Beautiful. Thank you Lord for brothers.

5) That both of my sons are snug in their beds at 8:30pm.

Night, night.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Potty Time...sort of.



James has been talking about the potty a lot lately. I don't think he's quite ready to use it yet, at least not full time, but we thought it wouldn't hurt to have one on hand to use once in a while and play with. James got to pick out the potty...which is why we ended up with the froggy potty.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

We're at war and I am tired.

I'm tired and the house is quiet but I felt like writing down a few words. All of my guys are asleep and I'm still processing the sermon that we heard at church this morning, mulling over Romans 8 and Ephesians 6 and about six other verses mentioned today.

Scripture says that we are at war here on earth. Jesus came to save us and "if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved", but until we die we are still at war.

I feel the war and it honestly breaks my heart. I feel the pull of sin in our world and how pervasive it is, how it affect EVERYTHING! And it makes me tired.

Today I am tired and I want to go home. I'm ready to pack it in, be done with this journey and go home to be with Jesus forever, where there is no sin. BUT, that's not his plan for me, not until my heart stops beating and the breath leaves my body.

As my mom always says, "we're not here for ourselves, we're here to work." So, I'm here to work. Jesus tells us in Matthew 28 that we are supposed to go out and tell people about him and his Gospel, the good news as it's called. And it is, it's the best news but sometimes it's hard to tell.

I, like Paul am not ashamed of the Gospel. I love the Gospel. The truth about Jesus is what my life is built on now and has been for the past 6 years. Before I knew Jesus and gave my life to him, I was dead and on the road to hell. I thought only of myself and did not see my sin. But now that I know Jesus I am alive. Life is still hard, harder in some cases, but I have hope and know that one day I'll be home with my Lord.

So what am I saying? I don't know. I am just really feeling the weight of sin lately and I just wish everyone knew that the only answer is Jesus. That without him there is just death, destruction and ultimately hell. But with him there is peace and comfort and praise for ever and ever AMEN!

So even though I'm tired, I'm also encouraged. I'm encouraged that I don't have to fight this war alone, that Jesus is with me and his holy spirit is in me. I'm tired but His mercies are new every morning Lamentations tells us, so I know there is hope for tomorrow and that "joy comes with the morning."

I'm here to work, to tell people about Jesus so that's what I'll do.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Boys Room

I'm getting really excited about our boys sharing a room. Will is starting to sleep a lot longer at night so I have a feeling we'll be moving him into James room or the soon-to-be "The Boys Room" (doesn't that just sound fun!), soon.

With that in mind I've been day dreaming about what their room will (one day, hopefully) look like. Here's the plan.

Will in the crib, James in a twin bed (some day maybe a bunk for the boys to share since their room isn't very big) with one wall painted either a gray blue or a sort of minty lime green, not sure yet. Above James bed there will be a canvas on the wall with the verse that we used to dedicate him at church written on it and above Will's bed his verse.

James
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
Be not wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord, and turn away from evil." Proverbs 3:5-7

Will
"For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God."
Ephesians 3:14-19

Then on the wall that is painted I have an idea. I want to buy all the letters of the alphabet (craft stores have these in wood and cardboard) to hang them on the wall in alphabetical order. I'll paint all the letters black except the J and the W which will be painted white so that they stand out.


Ok that's all I've got for now but I'm getting excited about spring cleaning, organizing our closets, doing the boys room and getting rid of a lot of STUFF!!!!!!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

February

Here are some shots from February along with a quick video of Will trying to roll over. He's almost there!

Enjoy.

2010-03-02

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Old Blog, New Tricks

Ok so I've been silent long enough. New look for the blog and new content as well, or at least a little new.

I have another blog where I do writing about life and what God is teaching me (which has also been silent for quite some time) and quite frankly I am tired of keeping up both sites. So I've decided to merge them into one.

From now on the Sing's and Things (which may get a new title too, who knows?!) is going to be a sort of diary of our life (pictures included) but also a place where I might post a thought or two and talk about what the Lord is working out in my life.

I want this blog to be an honest look into our lives so get ready for some changes, some truth and a lot about Jesus.

The Incredible Mr. Will

Our little baby boy is already becoming a little man!

At almost 4 months he's talking up a storm (ok cooing actually), grabbing at just about anything he can get his hands on, and now he's trying to roll over.

Roll baby roll!

Smiley Boy!

Brotherly love...or squishing.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Thankful

Today started out with me a little bit groggy and the house quiet and dark. I tried to pray and do my daily reading but sleep overtook me and quite honestly a slight feeling of hopelessness washed through me. Asleep on the couch is where I ended up. Bible on the floor and prays half said.

Fast forward three hours. One big boy eating his weight in cranberries after asking very clearly for them and one small boy nursing himself to sleep. The house is quiet, soft music playing on the computer, and the lights are low. I can't help but be thankful. I pray a quiet prayer and thank the Lord for my babies. I thank him for the sweet face Will makes just as he is falling into dreamland, the sleepy smile he gives me as if to say, night night Mommy.

Tears flood my eyes as I look down and see cars "parked" all around me. My big boy has been creating a traffic jam at my feet as I talked to God. He likes to be close to me, even if just to play around me while I feed his little brother.

Today I am thankful.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Trip to the Park

Here are some photos we took recently at the park.

2010.01.09 - Madison Park