Sunday, June 28, 2009

Trying Days With Joys Thrown In

Wow.  Where do I even start?  Last time I posted I was at my parents house on my birthday...June 15.  It is now June 28, and I have been back over here twice.  What a month....what a year. 
I did have a very good birthday cookout.  It only rained about 5 min., and we had fun.  It also gave us a chance to spend the afternoon with Troy and him with the whole family. 
Four and a half days after we got home from that visit, we went back to my parents'/ Briana's, which is a 2 hour drive.  James took pictures of Hairspray dress rehearsals (fun pictures coming soon!!) on Tues., and Wed. night.  Opening night was Thurs. night.  It was spectacular....and not just because my daughter was in it.  : )  On Wed., while Briana was in all day rehearsals, James and I went out and did some preleminary scouting for her an apt.  Mostly ruling some out based on location.   That is a little freaky.....finding my baby an apt. : )We were here that trip 3 nights.  My sister and 2 nieces from the other side of TN were also here visiting my parents, so we had a FULL house.  A 3 bedroom house with 11 people, 5 dogs, 2 cats, and an African Grey parrot.  Wow.  It was fun visiting, though.
We went back home Friday night.  Got home about 10:00!  Marissa stayed at my parents' to play with her cousins and stay to visit with her grandparents after they leave.  Well, the next night at 9:45, I hurriedly threw some things in the car, and unexpectedly set out once again to my parents' house, alone this time.  Marissa was running a high fever, had a sore throat, and was throwing up.  She needed her mama.  That was last night.  It was about 11:00 their time (midnight mine.....I changed time zones coming here)  when I got here, and she was back up and had just thrown up again.  It was  pretty long night, especially up until about 3:00 this morning.  She finally stopped throwing up then, but sleep was still fretful, since I was sleeping curled up in a living room chair.  Thankfully, I was able to take a nap today.  Marissa is doing better today, although still running a low grade temp.  I hope to be able to go home tomorrow afternoon (which will actually be today, I guess by the time I get this posted).  I guess she will still be staying here, which means James will still be making a trip to come back over here to pick her back up. 
I am currently still up because I am chapheroning Briana and Troy while they watch a movie. : )  Everyone else is in bed. 
I am hoping to make it home tomorrow because tomorrow....the 29th....James and I celebrate our 24th wedding anniversary.  I love him!!!  Our marriage gets so much better the further we go, and I am more in love with him than ever!
When I get back, guess what!  I will have 11 whole days to be at home before I come back.  Long story, but it's just a season.  I will be coming back alone again, and be here 9 days.  I think this season will slow down after Briana is in an apt. 
Okay.  I realized I didn't throw in the joys!  Spending time with Briana, spending time with Troy, spending time with my nieces,  a *wonderful* opening night for Briana (we laughed and had a ball), sitting beside the quiet lake in prayer and thought, seeing Briana so happy and doing what she loves, cleansing tears, good conversations and strengthening friendship with Ashley,  enjoying seeing Ashley prepare for all the exciting things coming up in her life and seeing her be blessed by people donating for her Kenya trip, a sweet time with Daniella before I had to leave last night, dancing to oldies in the car coming over here last night, and, yes, even holding Marissa's hair back and wiping her face down when she was sick last night.  The situation wasn't really a joy, but I felt so much love and pain for her.  I'm sure there are many others.  God has blessed me.
I also realized I didn't mention the greatest of the trying days, but that will have to wait for another post. 
I sure am hoping this movie is over soon!  : ) I'm not really chaperoning. Just up with them.

Monday, June 15, 2009

This and That

We are visiting our daughter Briana this week.  We came over on Friday, and Friday night James and I had dinner with her and Troy.  It was a really nice time.  On Sat. afternoon, I went alone to see them in Shenandoah.....which is where they met.  On Sunday,.....I went again  (sheepish grin) with Ashley.  Sunday was their final of 36 shows since it opened mid-March.  She was getting pretty tired of it these last few weeks, but was still, in some ways, sad it was over.  Of course, she is in full swing of Hairspray rehearsals.  She's 10 to 10 tomorrow, with an hour and a half break for lunch, and one for supper.  It's like that most of this week.
Troy and Briana in their Shenandoah costumes.

  Thankfully, she is off today.  She's off most Mondays unless it's tech week (next week).  Today is my birthday, so we're planning to go for a cookout this afternoon.  Unfortunately, there is a 50% chance of scattered storms this afternoon.  : (  I hope we don't get rained out!
   Ashley is still plugging away at her college history course, and she and I have been enjoying some fun times together.  It's funny how you can miss one so much, and yet be thankful for the opportunities it's giving you with another one.  Confusing emotions.  : ) 
Speaking of which, this letting go thing is just not easy.......learning to share them with others (especially a man! : ) ), and that they are spreading their wings in new, higher, different places, and learning from God what your new place in that is.........  I'm getting there....I think.....
I had hoped to go home Tues., which became Wed., which I find out now, is Thurs.  I enjoy visiting with Briana, but we're going to be seeing very little of her Tues.-Thurs. with her rehearsals.   And, we will be coming back 5 days later for James to take pictures at Hairspray dress rehearsals 2 nights, then the 3rd night we will go to the opening. 
Ashley is getting very excited about her Kenya trip.  If you are on Facebook, look up "Ashley's Going to Kenya!", and join her group to join us in prayer for the trip and team. 
The younger girls are doing good.  They are looking forward to coming back over next week again because 2 of their cousins will be here that week.  It's kind of a low key week for them this week.  Not much of their stuff here, their grandparents are out of town this week, we haven't been able to get swimming passes to the pool yet (hopefully today), and I've been gone a lot of the time we've been here.  They played Wii quite a while yesterday with their Daddy.  They're watching Animal Planet right now. We watch very little t.v., but I do let them watch some of the shows on there sometimes.  I tell you.....that little Daniella can remember every single detail about animals that she hears on that show.  Even when she has trouble comprehending and remembering other things, she can tell you word for word details about animals on a show she saw months ago.
Off to get pull everything together for our cookout.  Troy is joining us, and I'm looking forward to some fun family time.....please don't storm!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


 Edit~ I am copying all of these old posts over from another blog site. This is quite entertaining. And, interesting to see where God has taken us since then......

Wow!  Where has the time gone?  The last couple of weeks have been full of changes, possible changes, discussions of changes, wondering about changes......   you get the picture.  Sending adult children off into the world is exciting, difficult, and full of all kinds of emotions.
Let's see.....I will start with Ashley, our 22 year old.  She is living at home still (YAY!!), and taking her courses in "Religion" online through Liberty Univ.  She's really struggling, and not having any peace about college right now.   She's praying for the Lord to fill her heart with HIS desires, and to show her whether it is good for her to continue, whether she should continue part time, or keep going like she is now.  She's not struggling with her classes.  So far, she's blown all of those away.   It's a struggle of whether this, at this time, is the right course for her life. 
Her mental plate (and, therefore, mine!) is full right now.  This week she is teaching music at our VBS, and loving it.  I don't know if I've said this here before, but she has been blessed this summer to fulfill a 11 or 12 year dream to go to Kenya.  The Lord really brought this whole trip together. She had been doing a lot of internet searching on what type of extended trip she wanted to do this summer, and nothing would ever come together or click.  Then, just like God, at the exact right moment, came this opportunity, and we knew it was time.  She will be going to Orbit, Kenya (20 or 30 min from Nairobi) for 3 weeks beginning July 28ish, with a missionary whom we have supported for about 11 years.  If you all remember the story I posted recently about her sponsor child there, who had been raped, had a baby girl whom she named Ashley, and then the baby recently died at one year old.......she will get to finally meet Mokoi this summer!  She is so very excited.  I think 1/2 the village is excited, too.  Because our family was the 2nd ones to ever sponsor a child in the village, the missionary, Cyndy, says that Ashley is literally a celebrity in the village.  ; )  So, this week, Ashley has been busy sending out fundraising letters, in between studying a monster U.S. History course (tons and tons and tons of reading) and VBS. 
Also, in the midst of this, the Lord has led us to check out some camp internships all across the U.S.  Ashley has a very strong desire to be a Christian Camp director, with the dream of one day owning her own camp, centered around horses.  We have dreamed together of lots of things it could include and expand upon, including church retreats, praise dance camps, hayrides, etc.  It has been fun to dream with her.  Somehow she stumbled upon an internship program in CA.  It is not the right one for her, but got us to thinking, praying, and researching.  I have a feeling that if not this winter, then definitely by next, she will be in one of these internships somewhere in the country.  The ones we have found are anywhere from 6 weeks to one or 2 years.  Six weeks is not near long enough, but she's not sure she's ready to move across country for a year, either.  So, we're just looking and praying for the one that is right for her.  I think it will be a tremendous opportunity for her, and very good for her. 
Next....Briana.   whew.  : )
If you remember I said about 3 or 4 weeks ago, that she and a guy friend of hers were going out as friends and seeing if there was anything stronger there.  Yep.  They are now officially a couple.  The Lord has given James and me great peace about their relationship, and we really like what we know about him so far.  Because they live 2 hours away, we had not been able to meet him, even though my parents had.  Yes, I've been dying to get back over there!!!  But, he has shown himself to be a friend and wonderful gentleman.  He's very artsy, which makes us smile.  Most of his life has been spent in Seattle, and he has lived in NYC for a while.  He is an actor, playwright, wonderful artist, singer, musician, comic...but, most of all a Christian, wants to serve God with his life, knows how to have serious and deep conversations, and did I mention, gentleman.  : )  Yesterday he (Troy) and Briana came over for the day to go to Dollywood...I had been able to get them free passes.   They had to come by the house to pick the tickets up.  Bless his heart!  I bet is was awfully overwhelming to be surrounded by the 6 of us!!  We only got to see them about 5 min., which was more than a little frustrating for me!  However, last night everyone was gone to VBS except me (the resident heathen. LOL) , and Troy and Briana, spur of the moment, came back over for supper before they headed back home.  It was so neat.  It was just the 3 of us, and they were here for almost 2 hours.  I loved getting to spend that quiet time with them.  So.....we shall see what the Lord has planned. 
We are going over to see Briana this Friday.  Shenandoah is in it's last week (36 shows total!), and Ashley and I are going to see the closing.  James and I are going out to dinner with Troy and Briana this weekend. 
Are you still with me??? 
A couple of weeks ago, we found out that Briana made Hairspay for the summer. YAY!!!  It's going to be fun, although, she's so tired right now.  If you've seen the show, she was cast as one of the 8 Counsel Members.  They are the main dancers on the Corny Collins show on the movie.  They dance up front and have extra parts, etc.  Today she told me that she is one of 5 of them who get to help out in the store during "Welcome to the 60's" when Tracy and Edna(?...the mom) are being all dressed up in their pink sparkly dresses.  I *cannot* wait to go see it.   Opening is June 25th, and we'll be there!!
Are you still with me????
Briana has also made the decision (with our blessing) that she is not coming back home after Hairspray ends Aug. 30, as originally planned.  She is going to be looking for a roommate/apt., possibly auditioning for the fall musical, depending on what it is, driving 45 min. to college and going part or full time  (depending on the musical) with a major in voice, and hopefully still taking one or 2 dance classes at the Playhouse. 
And, yes. This has all happened in the last 3 weeks.  Would you like to pray for me??!!  LOL.  One last thing, is that I am so incredibly thankful for my husband.  With all that has been going on, he has been such a blessing.  He has done most of anything that has been done with the younger girls the last couple of weeks.  My plate has been so full, and I am still struggling with not sleeping.  My body has become weary, and if he had not been here to pick up the slack, I'm not sure how I would have handled it. 
Hello????  is anyone still there?