Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"Little Boy Granddad" in Pictures

One of my objectives for this blog has been to provide Lucy (and now Little Valentine) a glimpse into my younger days.  In an earlier post (click here to see ) I included a few pictures of me growing up at my Granny's house.  

Well, this post is one that I want to share a few pictures of the cutest little boy that I've ever seen.  Although I didn't know him in his younger years, I grew "quite fond" of him several years later.  We don't have very many pictures of this little boy, but I'm sure that Lucy and Little Valentine will enjoy seeing these pictures of their (as Lucy calls him) 
"Little Boy Granddad" ... 

I think he's around 1 yr old

I love this little smile!

Always smiling!

Awwww, so cute!
Singing at 2 yrs old

He started singing at a young age and uses his voice now to sing praises to our Lord & King.  (And he's even written some songs & recorded a couple of CDs for the family.)

God was molding and shaping this little boy even at his young age into the man of God that he is today.  I'm grateful that God brought him to my hometown during high school, and then saw that our paths would cross again during college.  

I'm very thankful for this "little boy" ... and the man he is today ... my husband.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

September 24th ... Our Date-iversary

At the end of the long day yesterday (Saturday), Granddad & I were chatting about what a great day it had been.  Then, I looked at him & asked "You know what today is, don't you?"  
Smiling, he said "Of course I do.  My life changed 28 years ago."

September 24, 1983 was the first date of the future "Granny & Granddad".  He was in his last year of college, and I was in my 2nd year of college.  It was a Saturday night, and he & his family were playing at a local music house.  I had seen them locally that summer play at our amusement park, so I looked forward to seeing "him" that night as well.  I was pretty nervous about meeting his parents again, and I knew his brother from high school. (You can read more of our 1st date here ).  But, as thankful as I am for that first date, I probably more thankful for our 2nd date (which meant I hadn't blown the first date!).  

Many changes ... much growth ... and still going strong everyday.

So (although a day late), 

~ Happy "Date-iversary", Honey ~
I look forward to seeing what God has in store for our next 28 years!

August 24th -- my 47th birthday ... 28 years with this guy & it just keeps getting better!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Happy Birthday to our Little Princess

A look back over the past three years with our little Princess Lucy ... 

Happy Birthday Lucy ~~~

Granny & Granddad love you very much!

From your birth-day September 23, 2008 ...

To celebrating your 1st birthday in Disney World ... 

To your 2nd birthday here at home ...

To celebrating an early 3rd birthday at G-G & Grandpa's ...

Happy Birthday, Princess Lucy!
You have brought so much joy and happiness to your Granny & Granddad ~~~
Lots of kisses & hugs, 

We love you, 
Granny & Granddad

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

What's So Special About Little Kids?

"Do your eyes light up when a child walks into a room?"  I've seen this quote of Toni Morrison over & over again.  And without even knowing who she is or the context of this quote, I've been asking myself this question several times.  How do I react when a child walks into a room?  Does Lucy know how much her Granny genuinely loves her? 

But, before I began to delve into my own introspection, I went to my Source.  Time after time, God's word shows us just how the Most High regards children.  Such as ...

(Jesus giving the Sermon on the Mount & He set forth the Beatitudes -- Matthew 5) ...
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 

Why does Jesus refer to His followers as childrenWhat's so special about children?

And again ...

(When the disciples were arguing about who would be greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven -- Matthew 18)...
In that hour came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?
And he called to him a little child, and set him in the midst of them,and said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye turn, and become as little children, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.  

I am a Granny to a 3 year old (Lucy's turning 3 this Friday), and a Little Valentine with an ETA mid-Feb 2012.  I was chatting with a friend on Facebook tonight, and her little granddaughter is a few months younger than Lucy.  It's so evident that my friend's face lights up every time her little granddaughter is within any distance of her heart -- which is always.  I think about the times that Lucy wraps her little arms around my neck and just buries her head in my shoulder, and whispers I love you, Granny.  
Why did God give little children such power to take our hearts & hold them hostage for eternity to come?  

My Granny was the role model of loving little children. There were 11 of us grandkids, 13 great-grandkids, and now 4 great-great grandkids & 2 more due by next spring. (I apologize ahead of time if my family reads this & my counting is off).  Here is one of my treasured pictures of my Granny with my newborn daughter.  Granny was having radiation treatments at one hospital and I was across town at another hospital with our newborn. Our town just had a snowstorm and it was mid February.  But after our discharge, I wanted Granny to meet her first great-granddaughter.  

My Granny meeting her 1st great-granddaughter.

If there's another woman on this earth who loves her grandchildren & now great-grandchild as much as my Granny did, it's my Mother.  On the morning that my daughter's water broke, I called my Mother.  My Daddy was just getting back to work after having back surgery. So, Mother decided to get in her car & make the 2 hour trek to the hospital in the middle of a busy city's morning rush hour.  She was eager to meet her first great-granddaughter Lucy (who happens to be my Granny's namesake).  Mother put her own health issues aside to be with her first granddaughter who was giving birth to her first great-granddaughter.  (And I just happen to be Mother's first daughter too!)

My Mother meeting her first great-granddaughter.

So, back to the question ... do your eyes light up when a child (or your child) walks into a room?  How do children know they are loved?  How do they know they are important?  What do they think of us adults?  I believe God gave children a sense about them that most adults do not possess -- a sense of knowing when they are loved or not ... knowing if they are accepted or not ... knowing if they are cared for or not.

Kids are very smart ... they're very perceptive ... and they remember.  They can spot a "faker" a mile away ... that is, they can tell when adults "don't like them".  I feel sorry for the adults who intentionally miss out on knowing God's gift to us through children.  Sometimes His greatest gifts come in the smallest packages. 

Consider these lyrics and then ask yourself "what is so special about little kids?"

If it weren't for kids have you ever thought
There wouldn't be no Santa Clause
Look what the stork just brought
Thank God for kids

We'd all live in a quiet house
Without Big Bird or a Mickey Mouse
And Kool-aid on the couch
Thank God for kids

Thank God for kids there's magic for a while
A special kind of sunshine in a smile
Did you ever stop to think, or wonder why?
The nearest thing to Heaven is a child

A 'Daddy how does this thing fly?'
A hundred other where's and why's
I really don't know but I try
Thank God for kids

When I look down in those trustin' eyes
That look to me, I realize
It's love that I can't buy
Thank God for kids

Thank God for kids there's magic for a while
A special kind of sunshine in a smile
Did you ever stop to think, or wonder why?
The nearest thing to Heaven is a child

When you get down on your knees tonight
To thank the Lord for his guiding light
And pray they turn out right
Thank God for kids
Hmmm, thank God for kids

On Friday, our little Princess will turn 3 ... it's hard to believe how fast time has flown by.  I realize with each passing day that Lucy will only be "this age" only once in her lifetime ... and only once in my lifetime.  So, Granddad & I are enjoying this "ride" everyday ... we don't want to miss out!

Princess Lucy with Princess Rapunzel at G-G's house.

G-G & Grandpa always get Lucy a birthday cake!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Top Tweets Today

For the first time in ages I took time to read Twitter today.  It seems that when I do get online lately, I quickly return emails, check Facebook, or make a quick post for the blog.  But this evening I wanted to get back to actually reading those I follow on Twitter.  Afterall, I do follow each of them for a reason -- they interest me.  

So, here are the top 10 tweets I read today ... Hope you enjoy!

A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams -- John Barrymore 
(a retweet from Quotes 4 Writers)

Measure God's love for you by how much of himself he gives you to know and to enjoy, 
and what price he paid to give it.
(John Piper)
Better to build the future than fix the past. Only one can be done.
(Dan Rockwell - Leadership Freak)

Trials teach us what we are; they dig up the soil, and let us see what we are made of . 
Charles Spurgeon
(a retweet from The God Tweeter)
Laugh lines build character.
May all who search for you be filled with joy & gladness in you. May those who love your salvation repeatedly shout, The Lord is great! Ps40
(Shelia Walsh)
Blessed are the PURE( free from discordant qualities) in heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8 PTL the blood of Jesus purifies!
(Nicole C Mullen)
Simplify! If a live call will solve a problem quickly, don't email; DIAL & TALK.
(S Chris Edmonds)

On this Constitution Day, my prayer is that our Judges will put aside their own agendas and abide by their Oath to uphold The Constitution.
(Gene McVay)
"What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity." - Joseph Addison
(a retweet from All Great Quotes)

And a couple of bonus tweets ...

I pledge allegiance to the flag ...
(Soldiers Angels)

What do you think was the #1 supreme moment in history? The day Jesus offered Himself as a substitute for all. 
(In Touch Ministries - Charles Stanley)

If you haven't gotten hooked on Twitter yet, I encourage you to check it out.  I "follow" who I want and get the headlines from news and organizations that I want. 

And I also get challenged and encouraged as well.  
Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Oh and by the way, I'm JustGranny08 ... hope to follow your tweets soon!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A Family Tradition -- Vacations

As far back as I can remember, my family has always taken time each year to get away from the hectic everyday life & routine.  Yes, we've always taken a "vacation".  So, when Granddad and I eloped 27 1/2 years ago, we determined that we would take a small portion of time to set aside just for us, and then with our daughter ... even as "just the two of us", we were still our "family".

When our daughter was younger, most of our "vacations" were spent visiting our out-of-state families.  But even still, we would take a week out of the year just for the three of us.  So, as our family grew (with our son-in-law and with Lucy), we continue our family vacation tradition.  And when Little Valentine enters our world next year, we will carry on our family vacation tradition.  

All of that said to get to this post.  Last week, Granddad took the girls on our family vacation.  GI Joe wasn't able to leave his military duties, so it was just the four of us.  
Some people have asked us why we go to the same place over and over again, year after year, sometimes twice a year.  Our answer is simply this:  some people are beach bums, some are mountain enthusiasts, and yet others are cruisers.  But us?

Well, let's just say that these views are breathtaking to us ... 

Yes, we are a Disney family.  And the views just take our breaths away.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering September 11

Everyone of us remember where we were ... what we were doing ... and the disbelief.  September 11, 2001 ... a single day in America's history in which each of us can probably recount every single moment of this day ... even if it's a recollection through the fog of confusion.  It's hard to believe that it's been 10 years ... the one day that changed life as we knew it.

Believing it was "just an accident", I went about my planning period before the rest of my day with 7th through 12th graders at our church's private school.  When I got back to my classroom, I turned my tv on and would leave it on for the weeks to come.  My classes and I watched in disbelief ... Why?  How?  What's going on? Are we in danger?  My fellow teachers would bring their classes to my room to watch the news as the events began to unfold ... and still, we were in disbelief.  Watching the horrific pictures ... the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, Shanksville PA ... where next?  

We may not have the answers, but God does ... God is faithful ... God is just.  God was ever so there in New York City, at the Pentagon, and in Shanksville.  I think about the people who were in the World Trade Center going about their workday as usual ... the phone calls that were made to say final goodbyes to their loved ones ... the innocent lives on those two planes who had no idea what was happening.  I think about those who were at their duty stations at the Pentagon ... more than likely their focus had been on the situation in New York ... then tragedy struck them and more innocent lives taken.  I think about Flight 93 ... the phone calls made mid-air ... the selfless act to overtake the terrorists so that no more innocent lives would be taken ... Todd Beamer and the selfless group Let's roll.

There's so much that I am thankful for tonight as I write this post --  my security in Jesus Christ ... the great country that I live in ... those who protect us (military, first responders, police, firefighters, caregivers -- just to name a few).  So many heroes from September 11 ... President George W. Bush as he addressed the nation that we had been attacked.  President Bush was reading to elementary students in Florida when he received word through a whisper in his ear.  He kept his demeanor as not to upset the young students, yet knowing the destruction of that act of terror.  Daddies, Mommies, husbands, wives, grandparents, family members, firefighters, police, neighbors, friends ... And the children ... oh, God's little children whose loved ones are our country's 9-11 heroes.  May God continue to hold and comfort these little children. 

No matter what your religious beliefs nor your political beliefs ... you more than likely remember where you were, what you thought and how you felt on September 11, 2001.  Watching the remembrance tonight ...  reliving that day ... crying through the pictures ... piecing together the timeline.  God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore will we not fear, thought the earth do change, And though the mountains be shaken into the heart of the seas; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, Though the mountains tremble with the swelling thereof. Selah.  

As a follower of Jesus Christ, I am so thankful that even no act of terrorism can destroy or pluck me from the Hand of God.  Reading Psalm 46 (above), my heart begins to race and my blood pressure rises. And then ... Selah ... rest.  God is our Refuge and He is our Strength.  And nothing or no one can EVER take us from the Hand of God.  

In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand

In Christ alone, who took on flesh

Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
'Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live

There in the ground His body lay

Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt of life, no fear in death

This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
'til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand