Thursday, December 22, 2011


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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Christmas time is here!

Hello blog reading friends!  I am officially and completely done with my master's degree so maybe more computer time for fun rather than school.  (cross my fingers)  That is one of the exciting things that has happened this December.  I will tell you this Christmas season I am so excited!  It is a complete contrast to the way I felt last year at this time.  Man, I was kind of a grinch.  To look back over the changes during 2011 I'm a little upset at myself for being that way because last Christmas was truly one to be cherished, seeing as it was the last one I had with my grandmother and the last one to celebrate with my mother in law.  Maybe that realization has spurred me to have a little more joy this year.  I am forever grateful to have had those 2 precious women in my life and I will miss them dearly for years to come.

On a lighter note this year I decided to do a 12 days of Christmas with Ansley (and Adalynn although she can't participate quite like big sis can).  I love that some moms can do the whole month of December but I know myself and my limitations and 12 days is kinda pushing it. HA!  We did start a little early so we could take a hiatus trip to Grammy and Jimpa's for a few days.  But here is what we have done so far.
Day 1- Paint a Christmas picture
Day 2- Make Christmas cookies
Day 3- Take treats to the neighbors (Ansley loves doing this every year)
Day 4- Family game night (we played a Christmas version of pictionary and charades, I was super impressed with Ansley's skills)
Day 5- is today and we are gonna make it a hot cocoa night (even though it is like 70 degrees outside)
I used to think I could never do the whole advent season but when I took the pressure off myself to make everything a big "to do" we had a chance to just enjoy the simple things and being together.  We might do these things anyway but having it as a mystery for Ansley to open is most of the fun.  I love that Jay is also reading a part of the Christmas story every night at the dinner table.

Ansley helped me decorate the tree and she did a pretty good job. Although the bottom right side of the tree is "extra decorated", I think it looks awesome.  Ansley also has already had her school Christmas program where they sang Up on the Housetop and Jingle Bells.  MAN was that place was a madhouse!!!!
Ansley during her school program

In other not Christmas related news, the girls have both had a hand, foot, and mouth virus.  Poor Adalynn!  Her mouth and diaper rash looked just awful! Ansley had it too but she didn't look as bad.  Her problem was it was in her throat and she could barely eat or drink anything for a few days.  I'm happy to report that Ansley is back at school today and Adalynn's face and bottom are back to normal.
Adalynn in her Christmas outfit before going to nursing home

Today Adalynn and I went with some of our MOPS moms to the nursing home and sang Christmas songs for them.  It was a good time and everyone there was just so happy to see the kids.  Tomorrow is the MDO program and then Friday is Ansley's class party.  It is going to be a busy week.

I'm having a really hard time waiting on giving them their gifts.  I am so excited this year I can barely stand it.

Friday, December 9, 2011

"Is Santa real?"

Ansley age 3 with Six Flags Santa
    Ansley is 5 and asked about a month ago if Santa was real.  I asked her, "What do you think?" That was only a short fix to the question because she kept asking.  She later asked, "Do the parents put out gifts?"  I told her yes but it is fun to believe in Santa so don't spoil it for other kids.  Anyway, my mom sent me the following in an email today to share with Ansley and I thought it was perfect for all the moms going through this same situation during this Christmas season.

Grandma and Santa

I remember my first Christmas adventure with Grandma. I was just a kid.

I remember tearing across town on my bike to visit her on the day my big sister dropped the bomb: "There is no Santa Claus," she jeered. "Even dummies know that!"

My Grandma was not the gushy kind, never had been. I fled to her that day because I knew she would be straight with me. I knew Grandma always told the truth, and I knew that the truth always went down a whole lot easier when swallowed with one of her "world-famous" cinnamon buns. I knew they were world-famous, because Grandma said so. It had to be true.

Grandma was home, and the buns were still warm. Between bites, I told her everything. She was ready for me. "No Santa Claus?" she snorted...."Ridiculous! Don't believe it. That rumor has been going around for years, and it makes me mad, plain mad!! Now, put on your coat, and let's go."

"Go? Go where, Grandma?" I asked. I hadn't even finished my second world-famous cinnamon bun. "Where" turned out to be Kerby's General Store, the one store in town that had a little bit of just about everything. As we walked through its doors, Grandma handed me ten dollars. That was a bundle in those days. "Take this money," she said, "and buy something for someone who needs it. I'll wait for you in the car." Then she turned and walked out of Kerby's.

I was only eight years old. I'd often gone shopping with my mother, but never had I shopped for anything all by myself. The store seemed big and crowded, full of people scrambling to finish their Christmas shopping.

For a few moments I just stood there, confused, clutching that ten-dollar bill, wondering what to buy, and who on earth to buy it for.

I thought of everybody I knew: my family, my friends, my neighbors, the kids at school, the people who went to my church.

I was just about thought out, when I suddenly thought of Bobby Decker. He was a kid with bad breath and messy hair, and he sat right behind me in Mrs. Pollock's grade-two class. Bobby Decker didn't have a coat. I knew that because he never went out to recess during the winter. His mother always wrote a note, telling the teacher that he had a cough, but all we kids knew that Bobby Decker didn't have a cough; he didn't have a good coat. I fingered the ten-dollar bill with growing excitement. I would buy Bobby Decker a coat!

I settled on a red corduroy one that had a hood to it. It looked real warm, and he would like that.

"Is this a Christmas present for someone?" the lady behind the counter asked kindly, as I laid my ten dollars down. "Yes, ma'am," I replied shyly. "It's for Bobby."

The nice lady smiled at me, as I told her about how Bobby really needed a good winter coat. I didn't get any change, but she put the coat in a bag, smiled again, and wished me a Merry Christmas.

That evening, Grandma helped me wrap the coat (a little tag fell out of the coat, and Grandma tucked it in her Bible) in Christmas paper and ribbons and wrote, "To Bobby, From Santa Claus" on it.

Grandma said that Santa always insisted on secrecy. Then she drove me over to Bobby Decker's house, explaining as we went that I was now and forever officially, one of Santa's helpers.

Grandma parked down the street from Bobby's house, and she and I crept noiselessly and hid in the bushes by his front walk. Then Grandma gave me a nudge. "All right, Santa Claus," she whispered, "get going."

I took a deep breath, dashed for his front door, threw the present down on his step, pounded his door and flew back to the safety of the bushes and Grandma.

Together we waited breathlessly in the darkness for the front door to open. Finally it did, and there stood Bobby.

Fifty years haven't dimmed the thrill of those moments spent shivering, beside my Grandma, in Bobby Decker's bushes. That night, I realized that those awful rumors about Santa Claus were just what Grandma said they were -- ridiculous. Santa was alive and well, and we were on his team.

I still have the Bible, with the coat tag tucked inside: $19.95.

May you always have LOVE to share,

HEALTH to spare and FRIENDS that care...

And may you always believe in the magic of Santa Claus!

Isn't that a great story.  
Thank you Father for the gift of your son Jesus and thank you for this time of year to celebrate what You've done for us!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

My testimony

This year I joined on as part of the leadership team for our MOPS group.  I was asked to prepare a brief testimony for our next leadership meeting.  I thought I should share it here too.

My Testimony

     I consider myself lucky to have grown up in a Christian family.  My parents always were very involved in church and therefore, I was too.  My grandparents and extended family also played a significant role in introducing me to a healthy picture of what a walk with Christ looks like.  I asked the Lord into my life as a 6 year old.  I very clearly remember my parents putting me to bed one night.  I’m not sure why, but that night I asked them all kinds of questions and I told them I wanted to ask Jesus to be my Savior.  I prayed that night, with my parents by my side, that Jesus would be Lord of my life.
    Early on, my relationship with the Lord was mostly about wanting to please Him.  Of course I would make bad choices as all kids do, but even at a young age I felt the need to go to the Lord to make things right.  Beginning in 7th grade I was introduced to having a “quiet time”.  I began this practice of meeting personally with the Lord and spending time in His word, but it wasn’t until my sophomore year of HS that I truly enjoyed it and met with God because I wanted to rather than because I thought I had to.  My senior year of HS my best friend’s brother died in a car accident and through that situation I understood that God is always good and is always in control.  Even in a horrible circumstance that was completely unexpected God proved Himself to me and I have never again doubted God’s control and God’s goodness. 
     Now that I have lived a little while, I see why God wanted to cement those two truths into my life at that age.  As an adult you see the suffering of the world and of those around you clearer than as a child.  You also face demands and responsibilities that deplete you mentally and physically.  Praise be to the Lord that through the power of His Holy Spirit I am able to draw on His strength and trust His guidance through all of life’s circumstances.  He has proved himself always faithful to His word.  He has shown me He’s able to provide financially.  He has encouraged and satisfied my weary heart over and over again.  My longing is to show the world around me that God through his son Jesus Christ is the only remedy to the brokenness they feel, no matter what it looks like. 
     “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the creator of the ends of the earth.  He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.  He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.  Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”  Isaiah 40: 28-31
     So what are you hoping in?  Your good deeds, your money, your popularity? All our worldly things will leave you spent and wasted.  It is only placing your hope in the Lord that will sustain you through all of life’s journeys.  

Monday, August 22, 2011


     God chose me to be mother to some beautiful girls!  It is hard work but I feel like I have been given such an AWESOME privilege.  Sometimes I wonder why God thinks I was the best person to entrust these  amazing little beings to.  You know, on those days when I have no idea what I'm supposed to do in a parenting situation.
     However, today we hit a milestone!!  My beautiful daughter, Ansley started kindergarten today.  I'll say I had a few moments where I was sad.  I guess I feel like today marks the day when I get less and less influence in her life.  I know I still have a lot of time with her, but we all know that parents get increasing less cool to their children with each passing year.  I'm gonna try not to live with that thought in the front of my mind but today it has been staring me in the face.

     I have NO doubt that Ansley will do great.  She is very outgoing and energetic.  Her "I can" attitude is exactly what she needs to succeed in school and life.  I do have to remind myself sometimes that her independence is a wonderful thing. :) We have a long way to go but starting this journey today has been exciting.  It also makes you dream of what all her future holds.  I am confident that He who began a good work will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ (Phil. 1:6).
     If you are a daughter or have a daughter please take some time to listen to this great new song from Shane and Shane.  Lets praise the one who is our hero!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I'm back

      The problem with taking long absences from blogging is not knowing where to pick up.  I'll start by saying my baby girl turned one a couple weeks ago.  CRAZY!!  Next, my oldest baby girl starts kindergarten in a couple weeks.  CRAZY!!  That will make ya feel old.
      Some of you may know that I went to Nashville this past weekend for the MOPS convention.  I had never been before.  This will be my first year in MOPS leadership.  Really, I'm still not exactly sure how that happened or what I'm supposed to be doing.  HA!  The only thing I do know is that my heart SO longs for families in our community to know the power of Christ.  Hearing about the students Jay works with and how the majority of them come from rough family situations breaks my heart.  I have no idea how to help with this growing trend other than to start where I'm at.  For me I am a mom.  So what better place to start serving and telling people about "The Remedy" (as David Crowder so beautifully puts it) than MOPS.
       I took away so many great things from convention.  For one Jon Acuff is hilarious, but I think what stuck with me most from my time in Nashville was the simple fact that our marriages need to be nurtured.  That sounds so simple, doesn't it.  So why are so many marriages less than what they could be?  For me the answer is selfishness.  I've apologized to Jay several times for my blatant selfishness.  But after this weekend I'm ready to do something about it rather than to only acknowledge it.  The awesome thing is, that I really am married to the best man on the planet.  Obviously no one is perfect but Jay never ceases to amaze me.  I love him so much and I am so grateful that he chose me to journey through life with.  I only hope that I can return to him the blessing that he is to me. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


     I've gone through seasons of sadness before, but these past few weeks it wasn't really sadness it was frustration.  An extended period of frustration was new to me.  My poor husband didn't know what to do with me I'm sure.  I was flat out grumpy and unfortunately Jay and Ansley bore the brunt of it.  I know I'm 28 and I'm supposed to be on my way to living the life that I was meant to live, but I still feel like I have no idea what I'm doing.  It's not for lack of trying, trust me! 
     I have always said I know a little about a lot of things, but I don't know a lot about anything.  I said it just a couple of days ago to a fellow soccer parent at Ansley's practice and I got the typical response of someone trying to encourage me that what I said wasn't true.  I don't think that to throw a pity party for myself, I just honestly think it's true.  My mother says it makes me well rounded. HA!  I really am grateful for a Mom who tries to turn my lemons into lemonade (so to speak).  But I was reminded today in God's word that the truth is he created me that way fully knowing it and completely on purpose!
     The story in John 6 about Jesus taking the 5 loaves and 2 fish and feeding the multitudes, we all know it, yes?  Jesus basically asks the disciples the question, where are we going to get the food?  It says he already knew what he was going to do in the situation.  So for me Jesus is asking, how are you going to obey me and reach out to the multitudes?  Just like the disciples I feel ill-equipped and intimidated.
    In the words of Beth Moore...
     "A miracle occurs every single time one solitary person offers everything he or she has to Christ.  You may think you have so little to give, but if you surrender your all to Him, ultimately He will touch multitudes in ways you may never know.... (The boy) had so little yet offered all he had.  And Christ blessed it and multiplied it many times over.  He'll do it every time."
     I love that she said, He'll do it every time.  Today I'm feeling ok about my inadequacies because I serve a God who makes much with little.  Later on Beth continues to say...
      "The feeding of the five thousand account concludes with Christ's words, "Let nothing be wasted" Beloved, when you surrender yourself entirely to Christ, nothing will be wasted.  Not one aggravation.  Not one tribulation.  Not one celebration.  Not one single breath of your life."
     I guess I knew that, but to read today that my aggravations would not be wasted was huge!  I knew that my life as whole would not be wasted... that God has a plan and purpose in all things... but after a season of frustration that, honestly, has the potential to continue to be frustrating for an unknown length of time, I needed to hear that even that isn't wasted.  Thank you, Lord!  Help me to trust you to be the strength in my weakness and to be ok with not seeing immediate harvests from the labor I'm in the midst of.
Galatians 6:9
"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up."

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Happenings lately

     Well it's been a rough few weeks at the Reed house.  I feel like we've been sick since the weekend before Valentine's Day.  But I think we are pulling through.  Ansley had strep throat.  I used to get that all the time as a kid.  It looks like maybe my kids will too.  Adalynn had her first ear infection and man was it MEAN! My baby that rarely cries except to say "come get me" would just cry and cry and I had no idea what to do for her.  I guess she just hurt.  Very little sleep happened for about a week.  But now we are on the other side of it, hopefully, and we can resume life as normal.  I felt like maybe it was initiation to being a 2 child family or something because it had been years since someone in our house ran fever then all of a sudden one of us had fever for like 2 weeks straight.
     If you know me, you know I am not a runner!  I've never been, but the girls from my Sunday school class were going to participate in a 5k that raises money for autism.  Several of them were walking so I said I'm in because I can walk forever (almost) :).  But a couple girls started a couch to 5k plan and I figured if ever I'm gonna do it, now is the time.  So I've been running (well my interpretation of running) for about a month and a half.  This past week we kinda ditched the plan and created our own, but we'll get there eventually.  Before we started this I was trying to remember the last time I ran on real ground.  We have an elliptical machine so I've run on that a few times but I really could not remember the last time I ran on real earth. HA!!  The first week you only run 60 seconds at a time.  My first time out there I told my friend, I'm cheating, I gotta stop.  HA! I mean one minute seems forever when you're running.   Don't worry she didn't let me stop and now I'm up to running for 10 minutes and then walking a few and then running some more.  But I know all of you marathon runners out there are having a good laugh at my expense.  But, it's totally fine I'm just saying it's hard! :)
Nanny, my mom, and me at Adalynn's baby shower.
     Some not so good news is that this week we found out my Nanny has a cancerous brain tumor.  They were going to remove it Tuesday, but the family decided to take Nanny to a specialist in Dallas before any decisions were made.  She will be seeing the doctor in Dallas on Wednesday.  I am so lucky to have come from a family where everyone knows the Lord and I know the prayers of my Nanny have so much to do with that.  She and my Papaw, when He was still with us, were intentional in letting me and my cousins know about God and the importance of following Him and their legacy to our family is definitely to live a life like Christ.  So obviously, my Nanny is a very special woman.  Our family would appreciate your prayers for her and for the family as we walk through this.
Me with Nanny at their house when I was about 4

     One last thing is I've been trying to decide what to do for Ansley's 5th birthday party.  Plan A is not going to work out so if anyone has any good suggestions we are looking for a plan B.  She is pretty good about being up for whatever, but she definitely has been trying out her own skills as a little party planner.  :)  The problem is she changes plans about every 3 hours.  HA!  
     It had been a while so I felt the need to update so there is a whole lot of un-related information about my life this past month. :)  Hope you friends are doing well!  

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

EEW, Cockroaches

     So I updated my status yesterday on facebook about my disdain for cockroaches and I thought I should tell the whole disgusting story.
     The family was in the church office, a likely place to find someone in the Reed family.  However, this time it was so I could print some stuff off for my Tx State class.  Adalynn stayed in her car seat for pretty much the whole time.  We sat her seat on the floor while I was at Jay's computer.  Then I carried the seat into the workroom and sat her back on the floor while I got my printouts and punched holes in them.  Then Jay was helping our friend (and church secretary) with a paper she was writing for her Temple college class.  While he was doing that I sat down and had Adalynn (still in her car seat) sitting on my lap where we were face to face.  I was just sweet talking to the baby like everyone does when they see that precious face and all of a sudden out crawls this cockroach from behind her back.  It was like she was sitting on it and then it decided to make itself known.  AHHHH I'm kinda dying all over again.  So, aanyway, the cockroach crawls up onto the side of the car seat on the warning sticker that is right next to her face, literally like an inch away from her face.  I didn't exactly throw the car seat out of my lap, but I didn't set it down gently either.  Then I flailed my arms and said, "get it out, get it out, get it out!"  I look at my sweet baby and she has that puckered lip and a whimper as if to say, mom you're freaking me out.  What is the problem?  Jay came to my rescue... my big, strong, cockroach killing man! :)  Then everyone took a sigh of relief because I had made everyone panic.  Adalynn finally was taken out of her seat at this point. HA!  I really am not that way about anything else, but cockroaches are my arch-nemesis.
     I could tell you the whole back story as to why my hatred for cockroaches is so deep, but I realize no one really cares.  I was just thinking that it is a good thing I am not a superhero like in Batman Begins when he has to face his fear of bats by being surrounded  by them...I couldn't do it.  Sorry Gotham City. :)
I'll post of pic of my sweet baby in her car seat so you can see that sticker and fully visualize the whole disturbing scene. This photo was taken by Ansley when Adalynn was like 2 months old, but you get the idea.