Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Inscribed on My Heart

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Phil 4:13

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The Surprise Gift

Twenty years ago, soon after Michael’s and my engagement, I received a phone call from my soon-to-be mother-in-law. She was cooking up a surprise for us, a wedding gift which she hoped would become a family heirloom, and she needed to know if a particular Bible verse was significant to us, to our relationship at the time.

Immediately, I knew the answer I wanted to give but hesitated to share. I had one of those verses in mind. You know, one of the verses that gets so overused that it becomes a Christian cliché.

Phil 4:13.

Even Oprah claims it as her “life verse.” How was I supposed to sound super spiritual and impress my future MIL with a verse embroidered on thousands of throw pillows across America?

Nonetheless, no matter how “overused” it was, I wanted that verse to be the one on our family heirloom. Feeling like I had just picked “C” on a multiple choice exam, I hesitantly told MIL what I wanted. To make sure she understood just how deep and, more importantly, not-cheesy I intended my selection to be, I qualified my answer by explaining the significance of the context.

             I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. Phil 4:12

I quoted verse 12 and explained things about the Apostle Paul’s life that I’m certain she already knew. Then I explained how Michael and I wanted a marriage built on the rock who is Jesus Christ. We knew there were good times to come as well as difficult ones. As man and wife, we were sure to experience seasons of being abound and times of being abased. We were entering married life confidently, not because we believed in ourselves or imagined life would be perfectly rosy, but because we were confident in Christ and that come-what-may He would be our strength.

Even though I was probably trying, in part at least, to impress my future MIL with my Biblical prowess, I really did mean what I had said. But, as much as I really and truly believed, I didn’t quite understand what I was saying… not as fully I thought I did at the time.

For nearly twenty years, Michael and I have been constantly learning more on the subject....
Continue reading "Inscribed on My Heart" at my new blog, I'm a Little Lupie.

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Saturday, November 16, 2013


After a rather difficult month or two of starting and then stopping and then starting chemo, I was rather blessed to get an inner-ear infection.

Yes, you read that correctly. BLESSED!

Because I developed infection, the immunosuppressive therapy (chemo) had to halt which allowed me to take the boys on a field trip to the Fernbank Museum of Natural History in Atlanta.

We were greeted in the Great Hall
by Tyrannosaurus Rex.
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Ben and Brian immediately found a good hiding spot!

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Um, just keeping it real.

We do have two teenagers in the house now. ;-)

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To be fair, though,
Brian is not the only one who can be silly.

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Real cool, Brontosaurus Ben.
Reeeal Cool. ;-)

After fighting off the dinos,
the boys, Nohnie, and Papaw,
who graciously agreed to be our chauffer
since I am not able to drive long distances right now,
enjoyed an IMAX movie with images from the Hubble
while I enjoyed some chat time with a friend.

Then we ate a FAB lunch at the cafeteria.
During our lunch break, something VERY interesting happened.

Before you scroll down any farther,

You may find the next image a bit disturbing
as it may cause you to question
everything you have ever believed to be true.


Proceed with caution!!

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It's scarier than the T-Rex, I know.





It defies all logic; however,
there you have it.

Three boys, not all of them related to each other,
sitting in public,
enjoying each others' company,
not practicing spelling words.

I hope it didn't cause any coronary episodes out there.

Okay, thank you for indulging my sarcastic side.
Now let's get back to the museum. :-)

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After lunch, we made our way to the hands-on exhibit
and got all science-y.

Well, the boys and Papaw did.

I kept my distance, wore a germ mask
and bathed in hand sanitizer.

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They enjoyed "playing around" with equipment
which taught them about optics,
sound waves, the weather, and more.

Brian enjoyed being the weatherman.
He's pointing to Atlanta while standing in front of the green screen.

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We found some more dinosaurs,
and even Papaw decided to get a little goofy.

You're welcome, Papaw.
You. are. welcome.

We also went through a wonderful exhibit on the wildlife of Georgia.
Of course, I was too busy identifying the birds on display
to take any pictures.

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Then we made our way to the special exhibit on Marco Polo
where we followed his journey from Venice,
through the Middle East, and on to China.

Side Note: Do those of you who knew Michael when he was a teen agree that Ben looks
just like him at that age!? I see the young man I met 25 years ago in this particular pose.

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The editors in the family found a few, ahem, mistakes
along the way.

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Can you find the mistake, too?

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Okay, so now I'm totally worried that there are glaring errors in this post
and I'm a total hypocrite.

All in fun, fellow editors, all. in. fun.

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Then we found a way to work in Dr. Who
because, well, that stereotype about homeschoolers
just may be true.


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Then everyone learned a valuable lesson about only making silly faces for the camera.

Mom will NOT be deterred from her blogging plans.

The face you offer the camera IS the one that will be published
for the whole world to see.

(Well, at least the 27 people who still read this blog.)

Be warned, teenagers.

Be warned. ;-)

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We did manage to get one nice shot with Nohnie before leaving.

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We also caught up with Ben's new BFF, Marco, who had made his way back home to Venice.


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Friday, November 1, 2013

My Favorite Hymns

One of my favorite bloggers, Kellie at Blue House Academy, just wrapped up one of my favorite blog series. Through October, she shared 31 Hymns I (well, SHE, but I'm quoting here) Love. It was wonderful to have a daily reminder to sing worship to God hit my inbox each morning. Thanks, Kellie!

She wrapped up the series by asking her readers to share their favorites. Choosing 10 that were not already on her list was quite a task. We did not have to pick an original list, but I'm funny like that. Not wanting to copy and paste her work, I have expanded the challenge a bit. ;-)

Here are the hymns she included in her series that would make my ultimate top 10 list. You should click over to listen to the great musical arrangements she included in many of her posts.

  1. Fairest Lord Jesus
  2. Marvelous Grace of Our Loving Lord
  3. O, the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus!
  4. Great Is Thy Faithfulness
  5. Come Thou Fount
  6. A Mighty Fortress Is Our God 

Now, here are the hymns that make my official (not on Kellie's list) top 10. (See how sneaky I am about narrowing down a really, really long list!):

  1. My Jesus, I Love Thee
  2. When I Survey the Wondrous Cross
  3. Jesus, Lover of My Soul (I couldn't find a video I liked for this one. How did you find all that great music, Kellie?!)
  4. Not What My Hands Have Done
  5. Stricken, Smitten and Afflicted
  6. Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise
  7. Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us
  8. Good Christian Men Rejoice (I had to get ONE Christmas hymn on the list!)
  9. His Eye Is on the Sparrow (Hey, you knew I would work birds into this somehow! This is a favorite because it is one the boys and I have always enjoyed singing together, particularly when we go bird watching.)
  10. Amazing Grace
Thanks for a great month of hymns, Kellie! I hope my readers enjoy my choices as much as I enjoyed yours.


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