Thursday, April 07, 2011

The Principle of the Path {A Review}



To be honest, when I became a member at Booksneeze.com, when I chose this book to read & review, I realized that I hadn't really ever heard of Andy Stanley. The name sounded familiar, but the title of the book is what made me decide to read this book.
I am a huge fan of self-help & personal growth books. It seems that many people have many opinions on life, spirituality, God, friendships, marriage, parenting & so forth. I actually really enjoy reading many perspectives & being able to take bits & pieces of advice & ideas from many intriguing people. Andy Stanley is no exception.
The Principle of the Path is a great book for people at any stage of their life. It is a book with practical guidance & lessons about where one currently is in life & some ideas of how to get to where one wants to be. I say practical because when you read this book, you completely understand what he is saying; as if you've heard it before. However, the refreshing reminder that there are many things in life to distract us & without a solid goal, plan or dedicated mindset of understanding to what your mission is in life, you will never get there. Plain & simple.
All in all, I thought this was a well written, practical, easy to understand & read book. I wasn't blown away by the epilogue at the end, but other than that, I would recommend.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Friday, March 25, 2011

Time

Sometimes it's hard to really believe how much time passes by & how quickly it does! Going through pictures from year's past is a good way to understand how much people change, how our children grow up & how fast time goes! The photo below was from the summer we moved to Wisconsin. We spent our last summer in PA going to places we liked. The candy store in Doylestown was one of our favorites. :-) Still can hardly believe how much the kids have grown in 3 years!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Slowly...

I am the plumber with leaky pipes. Okay, not exactly...but I am the photographer with very few images printed on my walls. It does make me sad. I know. It's really a shame, right?! I am SLOWLY changing that. Over the next few months, I am going to be sorting & looking through the thousands of images trying to narrow down what I HOPE to print for our walls. It has been the task that I have wanted to do so much, but have always been so busy that the task seemed so overwhelming. Sure, I blog (well, not so much anymore..yikes!) or put many on facebook...but then life would get in the way or I didn't have the funds to get exactly what I wanted. Did I mention I am picky? By picky, I have a hard time buying pictures along the way to use. I have a design in my mind that I want to do on my walls...so instead of just diving in & doing it...I just prolong it. Anyway...enough about my procrastination. Did I mention I am honest? **See the above paragraph for that confirmation**

So, in honor of my decision to SLOWLY get working on my own wall photos for our home...I printed the picture below of Amara. I printed it in a 12x12 because I am working on my little photo project...a collage along the piano. My mom bought us a piano from my aunt for Makenzie to start taking lessons and using the top of the piano, I want to line it with various sizes of prints. So, with that being said...here's to me seeing this little project to completion! :-)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Superheroes & such.

This boy. This amazing little boy. Who can totally pull off a Spiderman costume, right? :-) But, really, this little boy is insanely wise. Crazy witty & quite emotional. I mean, his heart is 100 lbs. of gold. He loves superheroes, storms (but only talking about them!), books, art, graphics...and when I say art & graphics...I mean he wants to make movies for kids that are not rated PG-13. (long story...but I laugh everytime!) His eyes welt with tears when we talk about the homeless, the poor, the hurting. I have never witnessed anything like his heart in a little child. And this is MY child. God gave him to us. I have learned so much from his little quivering lip as he asks if we can sell some stuff to give people who have nothing. I've learned that his tears are God given. A passion that can't be taught. It is raw; it is real. Sometimes I wonder where my tears are? And then they flow when I see Madden's heart. They flow when I realize that God gave Madden to us. Madden has taught me about a sensitivity that we all need in our lives. When scripture says that children are a gift, a blessing from the Lord...nothing could be more true.



Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Father Daughter Ball 2011

It wasn't until last year that I realized that there was this really awesome Father Daughter Ball that our community has. And it was too late when I realized it...it was sold out. So, this year, I got online right when they had tickets for sale. I had heard it was such a wonderful event that is one special day out of the year when a dad takes his daughter(s) and spends a special evening with them...dinner, dancing in the ballroom, fun. The goal to build stronger relationships. Yes, relationships are built daily, however, this is just a very tangible way to celebrate that relationship. :-)

Tim didn't know what to expect, nor did the girls...but I wanted to help make it very special for all of them. I took care of organizing the wardrobe (thanks, Nana for buying Amara's pretty dress!!!) and my mom (Nana) thought it would be nice to treat the girls to getting their hair done...which we really appreciated. And they loved it! It's not every day a little girl gets to get ready for a ball! Tim then got his little girls some roses. Makenzie thought she was pretty cool. :-) Of course, I couldn't go stalk them at the ball, so there weren't any pictures & Tim didn't want to be lugging around the camera (which I don't blame him). But, I was so excited to hear the details! Tim said he was so incredibly impressed with the entire evening. He said everyhing was so professional. It was held in a beautiful ballroom at the DECC convention center. From a fancy sit down dinner, to delicious dessert & a dance floor full of dancing all night. He said they were out on the dance floor all night. It wasn't like a bad crowd at a wedding of people sitting on the sidelines all night...these dads and daughters were dancing machines. Haha! All in all, this will be a tradition for them!

Another great aspect of the evening was that I was able to go and spend a special night out with Madden. We went to the IMAX show Under the Sea & out for pizza at Old Chicago. It was really fun & we had a good time, too! :-)

Amara getting her hair done...



All done!!

I think she likes it!! :-)

Makenzie's turn...





Makenzie loved it. Both girls picked out the hairstyle they wanted. Good choices!

She is growing up waaaaaay too fast!


And so is she! Stop growing!!!




Sisters!!



With daddy!




They sure do love their daddy...and he sure is smitten with them, too!


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Merry Christmas!

We had a wonderful Christmas this year. Very low key, lots of great food & the perfect celebration for Jesus! All the kids got what they wanted for the most part & that was really easy because the kids all had super easy lists. My mom always gets the kids the one big thing they want & Tim's parents get them good things on their list, too. So, that leaves us with having to be creative to get them something else that they may want. :-) And of course, fun stockings full of goodies. :-)

I have to warn you, though...I didn't really take a ton of pictures. And I went for the straight auto shooting this year with the pop up flash. I just wanted to take a few pictures to capture the fun. Sometimes I just want to be a mom...not always a photographer. So, I thoroughly enjoyed our time together. For auto settings, I am grateful. :-)

The kids opened up their gifts from Tim's parents & their cousins while we face-timed them so they could watch the kids & talk to them. I just took this one before we went to my sister & brother in laws house on Christmas Eve night.

The kids went & practiced some songs to sing for all of us. Cute!

All the grandkids with Nana & Jim

All of us sister's & my mom. And baby D...Amber's new nephew. :-)

We open gifts from youngest to oldest in our family. So, Amara was first.

She got a DS from Nana! She was SO excited & she plays it ALL the time.

Madden's turn.

He got a DSi from Nana & some games & accessories. Happy Boy!

Carson.


My sister & my mom went in together to get him this little four wheeler thing. He was happy. :-)

Makenzie's turn.

Makenzie got a really awesome chair for her room, a lava lamp, some DS games, jewelry & a gift card for Claire's. She loved it all!

Madelyn.


She got a keyboard. Can you tell she's happy?

Brendan.

New fancy cell phone.

Kayleigh.

New electric guitar. Super rock star now.

We do all sorts of goofy things when we're all together. This time it was a pyramid.

Our tree.

Christmas Morning before opening up presents from mom & dad! Makenzie:

Madden:

Amara:

Madden & his new Angel Wars figure. :-)

We had fun! Good times!