Thursday, September 25, 2008

A Squirrely Revelation

So it seems I haven't hit my blogging groove this fall. I got out of rhythm over the summer and I keep thinking I'll start back up on a consistent basis, but it just hasn't happened yet.

However, since sporadic posting is better than no posting at all, I'm pressing forward.

Lately, Park and I have been spending as much time as humanly possible outdoors. Now this is a stretch for me since I'm an air conditioning kind of girl, but the weather has been so beautiful that it just seems shameful to waste it.

Recently, we've been enjoying long walks and acorn collecting at a really wooded park near our house. Today we took turns throwing acorns off a cliff into a large stream several feet below. I can't do the delightful giggles justice, so I won't even attempt to explain the amount of joy this brought my little nature lover.

As we watched squirrels climbing through the trees, Park turned to me and said, "I love acorns and squirrels and trees and dirt and sticks. This is the best day of my whole life!"

And based on the fact that he told me the same thing at Allaso Ranch, Six Flags, and his birthday party, I'd say that each day just keeps getting better and better for my sweet Park.

Seeing things through his eyes is such a treat. I love that everything is so new and exciting to him. There is such an anticipation and expectancy in everything he does. I can only imagine how much Park's enthusiasm for life warms God's heart.

We were all created with that same zest and expectancy, yet I sometimes find my childlike excitement being choked out by adult circumstances. When I try to figure things out, I lose my sense of wonder, which generally transpires into feeling far away and forgotten by God. But the truth is, there is no circumstance, situation, valley, trial, fear or doubt that can ever separate me from His love. He is the Author of my life and Finisher of my faith.

And when I walk in His truth it makes everything new and exciting, bringing anticipation and expectancy back into my heart. Park's enthusiasm consistently reminds me that today is the best day God has given me yet and my tomorrows (assuming He sees fit to give us these) will only get better and better.

Perhaps I should share this message of hope with the poor little squirrel we met at the park today, traumatized by the overzealous three-year-old throwing acorns his direction.

Friday, September 19, 2008

You Win Some, You Lose Some

A conversation with Park today:

Me: "It's important to use your kind words."

Park: "Why?"

Me: "Because if you don't treat your imaginary friends nicely, they won't want to play with you anymore."

Park: "Well, if they don't start being nice to me, I won't play with them anymore, either!"

Is it my imagination or did that teachable moment just backfire on me?

Friday, September 12, 2008

Hurricane Ike

Updated: We praise the Lord for sparing the homes of my family. There is minimal damage for them personally, but the areas where they live have been hit very hard. Electricity is scarce and water damage has destroyed many of the surrounding cities. Please continue your prayers for all those facing the aftermath of Hurricane Ike.

Hurricane Ike is the hot topic around here. Although the Dallas area is going to get quite a bit of rain, it is not ourselves that we are concerned for.

My entire extended family (parents, grandparents, all my aunts, uncles, cousins, and their families) live directly in the path of this nasty hurricane. I praise the Lord that they have all evacuated safely, taking refuge in my sister's house in East TX, a family lake house near College Station, and our house in DFW.

Hurricane Rita left terrible damage in their area 3 years ago. Huge pine trees were uprooted and thrown into houses, but everything was livable and able to be rebuilt.

However, this storm is predicted to bring 12-25 feet of surging water. If the water exceeds 17 feet, all of my relatives homes and communities will be severely flooded, if not completely obliterated. Please be in prayer for not only our family, but the thousands of others who could be so deeply impacted by this hurricane.

We are so thankful that we serve a God bigger than circumstances. It has never been a secret that our earthly possessions are temporary. During this time of great uncertainty, my family takes comfort in Isaiah 54:10:

"For the mountains may depart and the hills disappear, even then I will remain loyal to you. My covenant of blessing will never be broken," says the Lord, who has mercy on you.

Thank you for joining us in prayer.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Big Boy Room is a Hit

We finished Park's big boy room almost six months ago, but it recently occurred to me that those pics never made it to the blog. I must give some props to hubby because, minus the bunk beds, he built every single piece of furniture and shelving in the room. And honestly Chris should get some credit for the beds, as well, since they are actually his childhood bunks that he refurbished.

Perhaps my favorite feature of the room, one that I was unable to capture in pictures, is Park's new closet. Our house was designed with large walk-in closets in each bedroom. They are incredible, minus the fact that there is so much wasted space due to the lack of storage within them. After calling around to check pricing for having the closets throughout our house professionally customized, Chris decided that there was no reason to pay good money for something he could do himself.

Now, let's just say that there may have been some skepticism on the part of a certain wife who had concerns that hubby had never actually had any experience in closet design. But,that same wife wished she could have eaten her doubting words after seeing how well the project turned out.

Hello beautiful built-ins and exceptionally well-utilized closet space!

And despite the fact that I had originally wanted to stay away from a theme for the room, our little baseball obsessed offspring persuaded me otherwise. He could not have been more thrilled when he realized his name was actually going to be spelled out with baseballs. Truth be told, having the theme made pulling it all together a lot easier in the end.

But, judging from how many times he has jumped off the top bunk, perhaps we should have considered a parachute theme.

Why do I get the distinct feeling that after reading the above statement, Lolli is currently scouring the Internet in hopes of finding a safety net to purchase for Park's bedroom?

Poor woman never had boys.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The New Zoo

First and foremost, thank you for all your precious comments on my last post. It is such a blessing to be encouraged and supported in prayer.

Today Park and I ventured out for a little grocery shopping. We were in no rush to get anywhere, so we decided that we might as well make an adventure of it. (Truthfully, grocery shopping with small children is always an adventure anyway, right?) Upon Park's suggestion, we decided to pretend our outing to Wal-Mart was actually a trip to the zoo.

And based on how crowded it was on a random Wednesday morning, it really wasn't all that much of a stretch.

Our first stop was produce, and it was in this department that Park determined that we must eat some ice cream if we were going to enjoy our zoo experience. Just as I was about to shoot down that idea, I turned and saw what he was using as a makeshift cone.

"Yummy to my tummy!" he exclaimed, " This broccoli ice cream cone is DELICIOUS. And it makes me super strong!"

Broccoli crowns as ice cream cones? Knock yourself out, buddy. And to think of all the times I've stressed over getting him to eat his vegetables when it turns out all I needed to do was take him to the "zoo"?

A few minutes later we encountered our first zoo animals:

"WOW, MOMMY!" he shouted, "They don't even have lobsters at the real zoo. This is the coolest zoo I've ever seen!"

Yes, baby. And let's look at them quickly before the lady behind us purchases a handful. Praise the Lord she was gracious enough to wait until we were out of sight so I didn't have to explain why the zoo pets are being cooked for dinner.

After moving to the bread aisle, we encountered two small children in the throws of screaming tantrums over a mutual desire to push their mommy's cart. (Not unlike the fit an unnamed child, who may or may not belong to me, threw at the check-out last week, I might add.)

While I did my best to avert my eyes in order to give the frazzled mother the opportunity to preserve some dignity, Park on the other hand was tickled pink to point and squeal loudly. "Looks like we found the monkeys!!!" He proceeded to place his hands in his underarms, while dancing around and making loud OOH-OOH-OOH monkey noises.

So much for preserving the dignity of either mommy.

Finishing up with the groceries, we made our way to the aquarium portion of the "zoo". He was delighted to see the little fish swimming around, although I'm pretty sure they were really happy to see us leave after he banged on their tank to see "the little fishies swim all fast." I had flash backs to Finding Nemo when the dentist's niece came in for a visit.

After checking out and making our way back to the car, Park said, "That was really fun, Mommy, but I'm so sad we didn't see an elephant."

"Maybe next time, sweet P, " I said, "but for now let's get these groceries into the trunk."

A huge smile lit up his precious face and I heard him saying, "Our car has a trunk!"

I was a bit confused and distracted, so I just mumbled, "Yup." Unsatisfied, he pulled at my leg and said, "MOMMY! Our car has a trunk? Our car has a trunk? Our car is an ELEPHANT! This is the BEST ZOO IN THE WHOLE WORLD!!!"

Perhaps Wal-Mart should change their marketing strategy.