Sunday, December 21, 2008

Drum roll, please...

This is a picture of a truly balanced diet...especially the foam ball in the center...
A little architectural brainstorming...

We used the Joy of Cooking Gingerbread House recipe, along with the Royal Icing recipe from the same cookbook.

A glimpse of what is to come...

Warming the Tootsies for forming into animals...

Oh, you'll see how these dowel rods come into play...

Erecting the walls of our Gingerbread extravaganza...we used graham crackers as a sub-floor for our pretzel decking.

Pretzels and candy galore!

Twizzlers have these awesome rainbow licorice out right now which was the inspiration for this whole project. We used Lemon Drops and Royal Icing on a foam ball for the sun. I drilled holes in the base wood to anchor the galvanized wiring running through the Twizzlers, as well as the 3 dowel rods to anchor the sun.

I debated putting 'dead' animals in the water since, if you must know the truth, animals did die in the flood, you know...but, I decided against it...these 'elephants' didn't make the Ark due to broken legs.

The first couple off the Ark...the bunnies Em made by rolling out warm Tootsies and using bunny cookie cutters.

This pic has some rodents that were for some reason allowed on the Ark. On the right, Em rolled out warm Tootsies again and made these chickens out of mini sleigh cookie cutters.

The hearts on the side spell "P E A C E". Notice the dove on top of the boat with the olive leaf, I mean green Nerd, in its beak...

Aerial view

Notice the school of Swedish fish...and here, all this time, every has believed the Ark landed somewhere near Mt. Ararat!

Another view of the 'chickens' along with some gators walking down the ramp to the colorful pathway of Nerds.

The two doves on the front bow looked kind of like anchors, with a Junior Mint 'chain'.
Front view

Jason's sister, Tonja, and Emily and I made this all day Saturday and for a couple hours on Sunday afternoon. This was our first attempt at a Gingerbread House. Yes, I am hooked and am 'designing' new ones in my head for next year. My plan is to make one next year to donate to Children's Hospital of Denver. Thanks for checking it out. Obviously, this one is in memory of Noah. Hope you like it!

Friday, December 19, 2008

I miss him...

I obviously don't miss him being in the hospital...but I miss him...the smell of him, his soft skin, his toes, his eyelashes, his lips and ears, his hair, his buns...all of him.

You see, Christ came at Christmas to save me...from Hell, from separation from God, from myself! He has given me the most amazing gift for which I can never repay. It's actually available to all of us, no questions or qualifications necessary! Noah, I believe, gave me a gift that obviously doesn't compare to Christ, but grabbed hold of my heart and pointed it toward Him. I am grateful that Noah's hospital stay was over Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years and my birthday because those days will never be the same for me, eh-ver. Thankfulness, Salvation and Grace, New Beginnings, Abundant Life in Christ...these are what I think of when these days roll over. Nothing for granted. I would say at this point, "I've learned life is too short." But truly, life, or at least abundant life, isn't measured by dates or time but instead the quality with which you live it...Noah taught me how to live this life on Earth with purpose, for God's glory, with eternal perspective. I think he gave me a pretty amazing Christmas present...I don't need anything else...

...but I still miss him.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I double dawg dare you... turn off the TV and tuck your kid into bed tonight.

For some, that might not be a dare, but the dare comes in where you not only tuck your kid in, but lay there and read a book to your kid, talk about their favorite part of the day, say prayers together and snuggle a bit...still not a dare? It is if you actually turned your TV off and DID NOT TiVo anything! We don't have TiVo and I'm not judging you if you do...I don't watch any regularly scheduled shows, and I'm not judging you if you do...but I am double dawg daring you to not care about TV for an extended amount of time and actually watch your kids or your in amazement at how beautiful they are...stare at them, touch their silky hair, smooch their noses and nibble their ears...while you still can! TV isn't bad in and of itself, but it is a time waster, so, if you are going to waste some time tonight, I dare you to do it taking extra long tucking your kids'll find it's not a waste at's likely the best Christmas present you'll get this year!

Now, if you just tucked your kid in but you still TiVo'd your show, you may think you just got the best of both worlds, but somehow you're still missing it...they grow up fast. We know this because our grandparents and parents have told us, and, for whatever amount of time that you've been a parent (if you are one), you've experienced it first hand...

And just in case you think you'll actually miss something if you don't watch your special show this week or next or the next...believe me, you won't...I'm 36 going on 37 and when I was in High School, Bo and Hope were on Days of Our I go through the check out line at the grocery store, apparently they are STILL on Days and only days have passed in 20 years...See, you won't miss a thing...unless, of course, you don't tuck your kids into bed and snuggle a while...and then, well, you'll miss out on God's gracious gift to you!

This season, give your kids the gift of's what they'll always remember...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Sex Ed: lesson # who's keeping track?!

This morning while reading Luke chapter 1 to Emily, where Mary, a virgin, one, has an encounter with an angel; two, learns she's pregnant; and three, that the baby in her womb isn't any guy's baby (since she's a virgin) but the very Son of God, the following conversation took place:

Me: Sweetie, do you know what is so amazing about the way Jesus came to earth? Well, see that part where the Bible says that Mary is a virgin?

Em: Yeah.

Me: Well, a virgin is a person who has not had sex. Do you remember when we talked about that?

Em: Yeah.

Me: Do you remember what has to happen in order to make a baby grow in a mommy's belly?

Em: Yeah.

Me: Do you remember what a daddy has inside him that is special that has to fertilize the mommy's egg?

Em: Ummmmmmmm...larvae?

Me: ...

Friday, December 05, 2008

My sweet, helpful husband...

Isn't he so great...

How'd this one get in there?

Wow, he's just so great I can't stare at him enough...

OH wait! That's where she gets this stuff...AND somehow, I'm always blamed for it...

Oh, husbands...mine is really helpful. He actually really is. In fact, when I asked him if he'd be interested in helping make dinner once a month, he said he'd be glad to...Here's the recipe he even looked up on-line so he could be helpful in the kitchen.

Why don't I just call the American Heart Association right now and schedule a family angioplasty?!

Here's my response...

OH DO TELL how helpful your man is in the kitchen!

*(Just so you know, he really does help with everything else...he's the best man I've ever met!)

Thursday, December 04, 2008

I'm being audited...

...well, at least in a way that has eternal significance.

I received an article from a friend in the Winter of 1998 from LEADERSHIP magazine written by Fred Smith, who at the time was a business man in Dallas and contributing editor to the magazine (Just want to make sure I'm giving proper credit here...). It's called, "Conducting a Spiritual Audit: Twelve questions to keep your personal accounts in order." I get it out every so often and want to share the questions with you here.
  1. Am I content with who I am becoming?

  2. Am I becoming less religious and more spiritual?

  3. Does my family recognize the authenticity of my spirituality?

  4. Do I have a flow-through philosophy?

  5. Do I have a quiet center to my life?

  6. Have I defined my unique ministry?

  7. Is my prayer life improving?

  8. Have I maintained a genuine awe of God?

  9. Is my humility genuine?

  10. Is my "spiritual feeding" the right diet for me?

  11. Is obedience in small matters built into my reflexes?

  12. Do I have joy?

I share this list not to bring judgment on you but to encourage you as it encourages me each time I read it to do some soul searching with the Lord. Reading the article above helps bring some clarity to the actual content of the questions...I hope this blesses you.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

The Well

I've been wanting to share this with *you* for some time and am excited to now! In January, on the 12th actually, I'm helping launch a women's ministry at our church called 'The Well'. God put the name 'The Well' on my heart probably 8 years ago. I thought since it was over 8 years ago that it was supposed to get rolling at my old church but God kept closing the door. He continued to lead me to the story in John 4 about Jesus and the Samaritan woman so I read it over and over. It is such an amazing picture of God's pursuit of us through Christ and how He'll go to any length to offer us eternal life and perspective...I was sitting at the well 2 years ago...looking back, I can see how God's timing was perfect and mine was futile...

Anyway, you may think this doesn't affect you because you live in NY or GA or WA or another country or continent, but I am sure through 6 degrees of separation, you know a girl in Colorado, USA in the greater Denver area who could use a 'filling' the second Monday of every month. I'd like to invite any woman age 14 and up who wants to meet the Savior of the world in a personal way and grow in their walk with him to join us at 'The Well' on January 12th. We'll only be teaching from God's word because, one, His word ROCKS, and two, so that when a visitor comes she isn't 'behind' or unable to jump right in and be a part of it.

Personally, I am truly in awe that God would bless me with such an opportunity to share His love for women in such a neat setting. I pray that all of us would be transformed just like the girl was who met Jesus at noon that one day 2000 years ago.

If you are local this is not a ministry solely for women at RRC. Please email me at if you are interested in coming to check this out or if you have other questions regarding 'The Well'. We will meet the second Monday of every month starting January 12th, 2009 at RRC in Lakewood, CO, at 7:00 pm.

The woman who had her life radically changed that day at the well was not a 'church goer' nor did she have her 'act together' fact, she didn't even know she needed anything more than water for her household...she came away with so much more!