Sunday, August 31, 2008

High Desert Men's Summit and Community Worship Concert

Don't Miss the Holy Ground Community Worship Concert on Friday, September 12 at Deschutes County Fairgrounds Expo Center. Bring the family and join several thousand people as we worship God together. Michael will be leading the worship with the ComeUnity band and other Central Oregon musical artists will be performing as well. You will even get a chance to hear Mike Huckabee playing bass! Below is a link for more information:

The following day, Men from all over Oregon will gather for the 2nd Men's High Desert Summit featuring several nationally known speakers. Check out the website for more info:

Reflections On Life In Ministry

Last night we celebrated!!! What did we celebrate? Our 3rd anniversary at Redmond Community Church!! For some this may seem kinda silly, especially if you haven't moved much in your life but for this family it is huge!

Many of you know we have been in occupational ministry for 15 years. In these 15 years we have been at 5 different churches. In between some of those churches Michael has pursued other vocational training and job opportunities. In 14 and a half years of marriage we have moved 16 times and lived in 8 different cities.

But finally we have reached a milestone that we have yet to reach, we have been at Redmond Community Church longer than any other church. This morning I was singing on the worship team and could barely make it through the service without tears because I am so thankful for this wonderful place. Here at RCC much healing has taken place. I have children who have finally put down roots and sense security in their lives here in Redmond. I have a husband who is finally relaxing and enjoying ministry. For years he was guarded because of the hurt he went through at different churches. Personally, I am happy just to see my family happy. This morning I walked up to our pastor, Curtis, and held up 3 fingers. He knew what I was referring to. He had a big smile on his face, one that communicated to me that all is good. We are in a safe, healthy place. God knew what he was doing. He was preparing us for this special place.

As I write this I am reminded that all the trials we have faced (and all the memories we have made) these last 15 years in churches, and even my breast cancer has changed our family for the best. We rejoice that we have gone through these tough times and praise God that He has brought us through them. We are stronger as a family and individuals because of them. We are also closer to God. I love seeing the relationship my oldest daughter has with Jesus because times of trouble brought her closer to him. I love seeing my oldest son devour the Word of God on his own because he has learned that is where he can find the answers to life's toughest questions.

I am looking forward to what God has for us in the future and know that whatever it holds, He will be there to guide us through it.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Friday, August 29, 2008

4 Day Weekend!!!

After working on my preschool room and curriculum for the fourth eight hour day in a row, my pre-k4 partner and I finally saw all the fruit of our labor. We had no choice, all had to be done by tonight for Back to School night. I am happy to announce that my room is finally complete and I can now take a breather for a couple of days; hopefully for the four day weekend that starts tomorrow for me and the kids before school starts on Tuesday.

I was so happy to finally meet most of my sweet 3's tonight. They are too cute for words. I can't wait to get to know each one individually. I got high 5's from the boys and hugs from the girls. I even had one precious girl tell me she loved me. We had just met! This just reminds me of the awesome job that God has given to me and the love these little ones have for their teachers. I pray that these children will feel totally loved, accepted and safe with me. What a great job I have-to be able to share God's love in all that I do and teach.

Pray for me this weekend as I try to put aside some of the great responsibility that I have in planning curriculum to spend with my own children and who have never before had a working mommy. They have been with out me a lot while I have been working the last two weeks. The nice thing is, starting Tuesday I only work 2 days a week. Oh yeah, pray for my house too! I have neglected it way too long and it needs some cleaning. If only I could wave a magic wand. Abra cadabra, make the mess go away and let dirty clothes get clean and folded. Where is the easy button when you need one!

Well I am tired and worn out and going to sleep, sleep, sleep. I don't care if I should train my body to get up at 5:30 so that come Tues. it is easier. I AM going to sleep in tomorrow until I am absolutely needed by my hubby and children.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I am still alive!!!

It is amazing how long it has been since I have blogged. I really miss it! As many of you know I got the job at CCS as the new preschool 3's teacher. The last two weeks since coming home from the beach have been spent decorating my classroom with the pre-k4 teacher with whom I share a room with. We have spent many hours and late, late nights setting it all up. Last week we spent two evenings until 12:00 and 1:00 am. I didn't know that it would take this much time. However, I am enjoying the process and can't wait until my first day of school which is on Tuesday, Sept. 2nd. Please pray for me that day!

Yesterday, Mon. the 25th I officially started work. Today is my second full day listening about school procedures and policies. I am enjoying all the teachers that I meet. Everyone is so sweet and helpful to us newbies. I have also been trying to finish the room and prepare curriculum plans.

Thursday night I will meet my students at open house. All the work we are doing to the room will have to be done. So there is an end to sight!!

Mandi has been so wonderful in watching her siblings all day while Michael and I work. So far the house hasn't burned down! LOL!! Actually she does an excellent job at managing the kids and also keeping the house tidy. She has also been watching neighbor kids, Emma's friend and a three year old that I usually watch. Thank goodness they are not all here at the same time.

I hope to post pictures of my room as soon as I am able. I also hope to share pictures of our beach trip. For now I am putting all my focus on my new job and my family. BUT I WILL RETURN!!!!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Beach Bound!!

We are so excited! Today after church we left for the beach. We are spending the night at Michael's parents house in Grants Pass and leaving early in the morning for Brookings to spend three nights and four days at a beach house that our family has stayed at several times in the last decade. Our friends who own this beach house are missionaries in Thailand and open up their house to missionaries and pastors as a place to give rest and relaxation. We have made so many memories here and look forward to the memories we will make this week with our friends and family.

I brought my camera so I can take lots of pictures of sand, ocean and of course kids!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Summer Vacation Part 2

Wednesday we got to Tahoe and checked into the Monte Blu Hotel and Casino. This was a three night package that we got for visiting a Time Share presentation. We actually get most of our vacations this way. We keep going to presentations and they keep giving us incredible packages at great destinations for little money. I can't believe they haven't gotten the picture that we don't plan to buy.

Thursday was an incredible day. We took off driving around the lake looking for a great hike. We saw a picture of Eagle Falls in the art gallery of the Hotel and wanted to visit that. When we got to Eagle Falls it was nothing like the photo. The beautiful, rushing falls was just a trickle of water. I guess we came too late into the summer. We continued the hike past Eagle Falls to a beautiful lake called Eagle Lake. It was quite a hike. All uphill for about 1 mile but it sure felt longer than that. Once we got there the lake beckoned us to swim in it. It was fairly warm and so clean. I didn't wear swimming attire but that didn't stop me. I got in with my clothes any way. I was very soggy for the much shorter hike down.

We loved being just the two of us but every where we looked we saw kids and I knew my four would have a blast at this big nature playground. It is hard to take pics of just the two of us. Actually the pictures are kind of boring. I many times wanted to take pictures of other peoples kids because kids are, well, just so cute!!

Friday we spent the day on the Lake. We rented a canoe and rowed an hour long the shore of the lake. Then we camped out on the sandy beach to enjoy the Alpine setting and the sun. We bought floaties earlier and floated the lake for than I should have because we were a little toasty at the end of the day. We ended our vacation with dinner at a quaint little cafe that served the best and biggest burger I have ever eaten and then a movie.

Saturday came and we were ready to see and love on the kids but we had a 6 hour drive home. Michael and I loved our time together and felt very relaxed when we got home. The kids were happy to see us and vise versa. Life is good!!

back to reality!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Our Summer Vacation- Part 1

Michael and I had a wonderful time on our vacation. It was just the two of us for seven days without our precious children. We left our children in Grants Pass with Michael's parents who so lovingly and willingly took care of them for the seven days that we were gone. We left Sunday morning for Reno which was our first stop.

The first few days in Reno at the Circus Circus were spent sleeping in and totally relaxing with no agenda. The only thing that drew us to Reno for three days was the fantastic deal for three nights lodging, a $50.00 gas card, and buffet special. It cost us only $45 to stay three nights. WOW!!!

One night we went out to a nice dinner at Olive Garden to celebrate the Preschool position that I got. We were really looking for a good excuse to eat out at a nice restaurant. Most of the other meals were either from our cooler that we stalked or 89 cent burritos at Taco Bell. Michael couldn't get enough of them. You can't get the big beef burrito for this price in Redmond, it's a dollar more.

I also got to explore the Reno mall. I was able to get the kids some school clothes. There were some amazing clearance sales going on at stores I don't get to shop in here in the High Desert. While I was shopping Michael conveniently found a music store filled with keyboards. He spent enough time there to get his keyboard fix, testing every sound imaginable. I don't get the draw but it made him happy.

Wednesday morning we checked out of Circus Circus and drove an hour south toward Gardnerville where my Grandma lives. Michael and I got to spend some quality time with her. We visited for three hours. We probably could have easily talked for longer. I love talking with her and I learned a bit about my grandpa who passed away three years ago. I have such great memories of spending time during summer vacation at their house.

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Simple Woman's Daybook

Thank you to my friend Amanda who inspired me to post this blog. This idea of journaling is from a blog called the The Simple Woman.

For Today...

Outside my Window...The stars are shining bright and I see no moon.

I am can I be a better mother tomorrow - I need to start my day on my knees.

I am thankful for...four healthy children and a husband that loves me dearly.

From the kitchen... finally all is quiet and clean, but it won't stay that way for long.

I am pj's!

I am reading...all I can about running an effective preschool class. One of the books is full of themes and ideas.

I am tackle my to do list tomorrow. Most important item is ordering Joshy's Birth Certificate so he can go to preschool.

I am hearing... the keys of the keyboard upstairs that Michael is playing. I love it when he plays music.

Around the house...all is quiet. It is midnight and the kids and cat and dog are all a sleep. As should I!

One of my favorite to check on my children before I go to sleep. They are so peaceful. Each one has their own special sleeping position, and I love to listen to Joshy snore.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...I get to pick up the keys to my preschool room and meet with the other teacher to plan for the first few weeks of school. Do lots of laundry before we go to the beach house in Brookings.

Here is a picture I am sharing with was taken on my 34th birthday. Me and my beautiful kids. Notice so)little stinker!

I Got The Job!

I am so excited to tell everyone that last Tuesday while I was on vacation I got a phone call from the principal of Central Christian. She called to inform me that they wanted me for the three's preschool position. Initially I applied for the four year old position because if I worked the three days a week I would be able to get full tuition for my four kids at CCS. I really preferred doing the three year olds though because this position is only two days a week and I wouldn't have to work on Michael's day off.

CCS offered me the two day a week position and full tuition paid. God knows what we need. I am so thrilled! I can't wait to start teaching those cute three year olds and to be working at the very school all of my children attend.

They will also let Joshua go to school with me so I don't have to pay for child care.

Just think, I almost didn't turn in my application because it was so intense.

Steven Curtis Chapman on Good Morning America

Family to Appear on GOOD MORNING AMERICA, LARRY KING LIVE and in PEOPLE magazine

Chapman Debuts New Single "Yours" with Additional Verse/Performs Hit "Cinderella"
with New Ending

NASHVILLE, TN....AUGUST 4, 2008....GRAMMY and Dove Award winning artist Steven Curtis Chapman, along with his wife Mary Beth, and eldest children Emily, Caleb, and Will, will soon be opening their hearts to America about the loss of their daughter and sister Maria Chapman this past May 21st. GOOD MORNING AMERICA will air a special interview with Robin Roberts from The Chapman's home in Franklin on August 6th, followed by a live interview from Los Angeles on LARRY KING LIVE on August 7th, and an extensive feature in an upcoming issue of PEOPLE magazine. The decision to speak publicly was not an easy one, and these will be the first interviews the family has participated in since Maria's death.

"Initially Steven talked about never doing any concerts or media ever again," comments Jim Houser, Chapman's manager. "But quickly God began to show Steven that if he ever believed the songs he was writing, singing and recording before May 21st and Maria's loss, that they must still be true now. It's the family's hope that these appearances with serve as a chance to proclaim to a watching world what they know and are deeply convinced of even in these difficult days, the Gospel is true and faith in Christ is our Hope."

As a part of the family's acknowledgement of the tragedy and God's faithfulness to them through this difficult time, Chapman has also written a new verse to his song "Yours" from his current project, "THIS MOMENT":

I've walked the valley of death's shadow
So deep and dark that I could barely breathe
I've had to let go of more than I could bear
And questioned everything that I believe
But still even here
in this great darkness
A comfort and hope come breaking through
As I can say in life or death
God we belong to you.

"Yours" is the follow-up single to his hit "Cinderella," a song written about Maria and her sisters, for which Chapman is also now changing the poignant last line in life performance to "'Cause all too soon the clock will strike midnight/But the truth is... The dance goes on." "Yours" will be available for purchase via digital service providers including iTunes ®, Amazon, Rhapsody, Napster, etc. as of August 5th, with 100% of Chapman's royalties from the sales of this single being donated to Shaohannah's Hope. Producer Matt Bronlewee and co-writer on "Yours" Jonas Myrin have also joined the effort with 100% of their royalties from the single going to Shaohannah's Hope, and additionally monies received by Sparrow records from the sales of this single, after deduction of expenses and royalties, will be donated to Shaohannah's Hope. Shaohannah's Hope is a 501C(3) organization whose goal is to help families reduce the financial barrier of adoption, and as of July 2008 has provided grants to over 1700 families wishing to adopt orphans in the United States and around the world. For more details on Maria's Miracle Fund and Shaohannah's Hope, please visit

I found this video of the song "YOURS" on you tube. Here Steven Curtis Chapman sings the new verse that he wrote after his daughter Maria died.

We're Home!!

Wow! What a fantastic week Michael and I had on our vacation to Lake Tahoe! I have so much to blog about and some beautiful pictures to share when I get some time to sit at the computer for awhile. At the moment I have sooo much laundry to do and grocery shopping so that we can eat. I woke up to absolutely no food in the house. The kids have been getting very creative with their breakfast this morning.

Even though we had a great time away it is so nice to be home. There is no place like home! Especially my own bed. I slept better last night than any night on our vacation. I also missed Redmond. I never imagined myself saying this two years ago, but I was thrilled to get back to the simple way of life you find here in Central Oregon. I have also been missing my friends and church. After spending two Sunday's away from RCC I can't wait until Sunday comes around.

Can you tell I'm glad to be back? There is more blogging to come!

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