Saturday, March 29, 2008

A Hope for our Children

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And the little ones that you said would be taken captive, your children who do not yet know good from bad—they will enter the land. I will give it to them and they will take possession of it.
Deutoronomy 1:39

The Video is with sally and our friends and neighbors, Jonathan and Lauren Ramirez. This is fun to see Sally trying to walk to rope, but to me it is such a picture of how community has given me so much encouragement as a mom.

There have been many (a lot of them 10 yrs younger than stew and I) come along our family and into our life. These people have hearts that burn to know and spread Jesus all the days of their lives. They have given me so much hope for my children's generation and are coming along side of Stew and I to mentor and confirm what we are teaching our children of the Lord. When I see the Ramirezs helping Sally across the rope and cheering her on and reaching out to her and celebrating with her, I find so much more...I find hope for my daughter... daughters.... son... children.... that there will be many beside them after I am long gone to continue to help them walk with Christ. We love you Ramirezs! And so many many who surround our lives right now.....we are so overwhelmed at all of you! You help us raise our faces to the King and keep on. thank you...

We will not fear for our children but pray them into the hands of our Mighty God and King and trust that He will lead them into His kingdom and purposes....you, precious believers give us hope of that....

Happy Spring and a Great Easter!
















We enjoyed an easter egg hunt last saturday downtown at our old favorite park...Zilker! And this year WesleyGrant really got into the "Jesus is risen" thing. Though i couldn't find my "tomb recipe", so we had to use playdough. This Easter morning was truly filled with a sense of praise that our King was alive! It has set us in to spring here in Austin! Easter day was full of fun times with neighbors, friends and family over for Easter dinner...GREEK food! so fun!

Family is so fun!!








Uncle Kevin and Pa along with Sandy, Alyx and Cassie came down to visit us Easter weekend!! We had such a blast! And got to celebrate Kevin's birthday again with Tres Leche Cake and TexMex Food!!! YUM! and FUN!
We love you all and had so much fun with you!! We can't wait to come visit you and the bluebonnets!! We miss all of you! Thank you for every way you brightened our weekend!!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy Birthday KEVIN!!!

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My brother, Kevin, is my kids hero and so here is a birthday wish for him! We love you Kevin! Happy Birthday!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Lice and other stuff



So, at the end of our fabulous week, we discovered lice!! YIKES!! But, you know, as my neighbor said, "They are just another human condition" So, wesleygrant and I were the winners who were so privileged to have the little critters and got to experience it personally.

But I have to tell you that oddly enough, so much joy came for that day we discovered them. I called my mentor and friend, Cherie...whose family had gone through lice and she came to my aid. She bought me supplies to start the ridding process and she and her daughter came over and walked us through what to do, vacuumed all the bedrooms, sprayed down all the upholstery, and took care of sally while i soaped and combed through wesleygrant's hair...and most importantly gave us a hug and said, "it is going to be okay!"....it doesn't stop there...then college students decided they would take all our laundry to a laundry mat and do it all for me at once! crazy college students! and another experienced one, came over to comb through my hair and make sure it was all gone...still continues...my doorbell rings and some kids want to mow our lawn to serve us. They are from a local church in our neighborhood and were out mowing neighbors lawns...i mean, come on! who gets their lawn mowed while getting rid of lice! By the time stew came to "rescue" me...I told him, "The lawn is mowed, laundry going, house clean, kids resting and my lice almost gone!" Then broke down crying as i realized all the Lord had provided that day! Thank you LORD!!

Well, we ended up shaving wesleygrant's hair off just to make sure it was gone....i cried as stew shaved it....and well, as you can see, i looked like the bride of Frankenstein for a while as i got rid of the little critters myself! So far we are lice free...

Oh, and Sally's room (or should I say, the girls room! we are having another girl! Karis Elizabeth) is almost done...we just have to paint the ceiling white. It is a girly pink room and she is proud of her new little girl bed!! She is growing up too fast these past few months! Her brother and her do everything together!! My little kiddos...I couldn't imagine life without them!!

That's all for now....big week...a few entries and pics...hope you enjoy!!

The St.John's Kids Camp


So after the block party, 25 college students moved into our neighborhood for the week to serve the kids all on spring break. They did a kids camp at a local church in our neighborhood. 100 volunteers met them each morning to help with the kids throughout the week. I can't even begin to write about all the stories of this last week....but let me tell you, this army of students is on the go to give the hope of Jesus both in word in deed here in Austin! These guys gave me great hope for my own children, that they are leading away of pushing back darkness and making a way for God's redemption and restoration of all peoples!

The camp was every morning until 2pm and then they ate dinner that evening and came to our house for a time of debrief and teaching from Stew. It was the greatest joy to have them enter our house and to see many of them during the day and hear of what God was doing at the camp and in their hearts.

There was a couple and young woman that stayed with us a few nights as they were in town to speak to the team. They do city ministry in Las Vegas and Ft.Worth. They are AMAZING Jesus people! We couldnt' get enough of them....they got to enter our family life for a few days and we got to sit and talk about what God has done and is doing in their life! Aaron, Morgan and keri!! We love you guys and were honored to have you in our home!!

This week has been a gift to us, indeed and a step further towards knowing our neighbors and seeking to just be followers of Jesus around them. PRAISE HIM!!!

For more info on the St.John's week, see our friend's blog entry and videos!

Our First Block Party!!

Ryan turned 2!
It was so fun, that adults pretended to be kids to get a swing at Elmo!
We found the bounce house to be a great babysitter!
The great feast!
After
Before
My dad and wesleyGrant cleaning up trash

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Our block party was a week ago...It was the start of an extraordinary week!

The morning started with people from the neighborhood and our church cleaning up the trash in and around our neighborhood. We stayed home and got ready for all of them and neighbors to arrive for food and fun! It was wonderful! the food was a feast as people in the neighborhood brought authentic Mexican food and we had other mixed foods along the side. It was truly a time where many of our church friends got to connect face to face with our neighbors and we got to meet new faces in our neighborhood. One little boy's birthday happened to be that weekend, so we celebrated it with cake and a Pinata!

The response for our neighbors who came and even those who just looked on, was comments like, "We need this in our neighborhood"...."thank you"...."where did you guys come from?"...."you mean you did this for us?"...we had some neighbors stop by after it was over and thank us for the meal...it was all they had eaten that day....others just wanted to say thanks for the joy they found. It was so addicting, that we can't wait to do it again...or invite them in our home. We truly had the poor, homeless, 2 prostitutes, one widow, one drug dealer and many children eating together with the believers of Christ. I'm telling you, there is no life better than that!

Thanks to my dad who came and helped us! We sure enjoyed him and how he served along side of us and was able to live life with us!! We love you Pa!! Thank you!! And thank you to all the Belivers who were there loving on us and our neighbors!! We have connected so much in this neighborhood because of you!! We love you AustinStone Believers!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Trip to Africa!


WesleyGrant and I got to see the women's trip off to their destination to North Africa! It has been so exciting to include Wesleygrant on praying for these girls. We are so excited for them and can't wait to hear what they saw and heard there!! We love you girls!

A Joyous Night











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On February 28th, I had the privilege of serving 16 women from our church in my home. I have a relationship with them in some way or another and I wanted to use the gifts that God gave me to love on them. The first half was serving them a delicious meal along with some talented chef's and servers (Laney and Lauren!) and then the last half of the evening, I called each one up beside me to call out one characteristic I have seen in them...i.e..."Wisdom, compassion, servant, warrior...ect." and I was able to use my gift of encouragement to call out how I saw God using them. I was also able to tell them what others had said about them and thank them for being the beautiful women they were in our body at The Austin Stone. It was AMAZING for all of us!! In the end, we had some unexpected entertainment by our very own WesleyGrant...check out the video for a small preview! This went on for an hour if you can believe it! He loved the ladies!!! HA! Love you ladies and i'm so privileged to know and serve with you!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

The God who Works Wonders

Psalm 77:13-14a
"Your way, O God is holy; what god is great like our God? You are the God who works wonders..."

There has been much to blog about, and in time, i hope to post more things, but for now, this verse has been on my heart all week. It has shown as we hosted a dinner last week for 16 amazing girls...as our moms provided for many teen moms in Austin...as I talked with my neighbor...as we heard of the murders of many children in Memphis...as we prayed and sent the team of women off to Egypt....as sally is sick...as we plan for the block party this weekend...as i cleaned up throw up off the floor and poop off bottoms....and now as an idol has surfaced in my heart....

I'm young...old to some...but as i continue to walk this life, I am finding that the truth of God is the greatest gift I could ever have. If i were without all things, let me not be without the truth of God. This season of life is a busy one for Stew and I...but in it we are finding the truth of God to be our anchor in all things.