Wednesday, January 28, 2009

25 Random Things about Me

I was tagged by a friend on facebook to write 25 things about me, so I have copied it and placed it here. Maybe you'll learn something new about me or laugh about something you remember.

25 Random Things about Me

1. I was born in Baltimore, MD but my parents moved to Pennsylvania when I was 5 years old. I have called PA home until last year, when I became a Texan.

2. I met my husband at college. We got married and finished college as married students. If I remember correctly, the only class we had together was Preaching Doctrinal Issues with Dr. Leach.

3. I love to help people with budgets, finances and advice on saving money.

4. I am a stay-at-home mom, who periodically works from home doing billing for an anesthesia practice in PA.

5. I have attended Catholic School (St. Joseph’s in Dallastown, PA) and public school (Southern York County School District) but currently I homeschool my own children.

6. I will celebrate my 15th Wedding Anniversary this May, but my husband and I will be on two different continents.

7. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Pastoral Ministry.

8. When I was a teenager, I spent two summers doing missions work. The first summer was in NYC and the next was spent in India.

9. I love to organize and do administrative work.

10. I like to read…..and usually have a good murder mystery with me on vacation or a parenting/homeschool/self-help book on my bedside. Currently I am reading The Family You’ve Always Wanted by Gary Chapman.

11. I get a thrill from finding a good deal on things…especially something I need. I love saving money.

12. I have thought about going back to school for nursing, but my children are my focus right now. Who knows, maybe someday.

13. I have one sister, with whom I talk to almost everyday. We used to not get along very well, but once we both started our families, we had more in common. Love ya sis!

14. My dad and I were both college students at the same time… same college. He retired from the police department after 20 years and went back to college. I think we had one class together.

15. I am a first born. I am not a risk taker. I have learned though that sometimes I need to move out of my comfort zone...whether I like it or not.

16. I took 5 years of Spanish classes through high school and college but really can’t speak it. Part of the reason is that I don’t use it regularly, the other reason is fear.

17. I learned to play the flute in 5th grade and played through middle school in the band. After many changes in band directors during that time, I gave up playing in school and played for the worship team at church.

18. I love to watch police, investigative TV shows, like CSI, NCIS and Law and Order. Maybe it’s in my blood (my dad was a police officer for 20 years).

19. Almost two years ago my husband made a change in his career…he was on staff at the same church for almost 10 years and we left there for him to pursue his dream to be a Chaplain in the U.S. Army. We no longer live near family, but 1500 miles away from them.

20. I am a single parent but happily married (deployment will do that to you).

21. My favorite nighttime snack is Homestyle Popcorn with a little bit of extra butter on it and a can of Pepsi.

22. I have four beautiful daughters, Marissa (11), Katelyn (8), Victoria (will be 4 soon), Breanna (2), who keep me on my toes..and laughing.

23. I love to help women become better mothers and wives through encouragement, teaching and sharing my experiences.

24. I do once a month cooking…though my freezer is a bit low on meals right now. Since the holidays and vacations are over, I need to start planning my next shopping trip.

25. Even though I am in the middle of a deployment, I am content where I am, learning to lean on God and trust Him for ALL things.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Deployment Update

I have been wanting to write about deployment, but have not had the time to put into my post, so today I will just give an update and hopefully finish what I want to write and post it next week.

Most, if not all military families will experience a deployment in their soldier's career in the military. Sometimes they last for week....or a few months.... to those lasting a year or longer. The manner in which a spouse or family approaches the deployment varies greatly. Some embrace the change to take place in their lives, while others are in denial that the deployment will or is happening to them.

The Army offers a vast number of resources available to soldiers and thier families to help them succeed through not only a deployment but military life in general. Unfortunately, most people are not aware of what is available to them.

We are facing this deployment with anticipation and embracing all that it has to offer...the good, the bad and the ugly. BUT our faith in God gives us hope that no matter we will face this next year, He will be with us, even if we are 7500 miles apart.

Trust in God today for whatever you may be facing. Know that He will not leave you or forsake you, but He is with you. Trust in His Word and promises! Sometimes I think I will never survive a year without my husband, but I need to look to God to fill the longing in my life and heart during this time. My husband is an added gift to my life and not all that I need..... GOD IS ALL THAT WE NEED!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

He's in the Sandbox

Just wanted to let you know that Angel has made it to the "Sandbox". All is safe and well with the "kids". Thank you for your prayers! We will covet them this next year.

Once I have a address for snail mail, I will forward that to those who are interested. Be blessed!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Off and running in 2009

It's here!! The new year is already upon us and we are off and running. As I reflected on the last year and what I want to see happen in this new year, I am again reminded of God's love and faithfulness for us, his children. With the challenges that this life throws our way (such as the very soon coming... year long deployment), I can't imagine doing life with our Christ. This journey that we are on sometimes takes us to places we have never imagined but with Jesus, all things are possible.

My prayer this morning during my quiet time was that this coming year my walk with the Lord would be closer and grow deeper. That he would use the challenges, unknowns, issues, etc. that I will face to put me exactly where He wants me, for such a time as this. I want God to use me to minister to the lives of those I come in contact with, I want others to notice something different about see Jesus in my life. I don't want to just survive this coming year, but I want to THRIVE! I want my children to grow in their faith and knowledge of Jesus Christ, to know God more than yesterday and to become beautiful young ladies, both inside and out.

What is your prayer this new year? Do you have a list of resolutions that you are hoping you don't forget about yet again this year? Is there a relationship in your family that needs some mending? Do you have a child that has walked away from the faith and you want to see him/her serving God again? How's your devotional life? Are you making time for God each day? Are you in a marriage where you are walking this faith walk alone and you would like to see your spouse saved? We are all in different places in this journey that we are on, but God is still the same....yesterday, today and forever. Don't start this new year off with ruined hopes and desolate dreams but trust God today to do a new thing in your life.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

The end of 08

Wow, I can't believe that 2008 will be over in just a few hours. Where has the year gone? This month alone has been a busy one.

We started off the month with a Brigade Ball. This was the first military ball that Angel and I have attended since he graduated from Chaplain School. I'll have to add a picture later, since we took Angel's camera to the ball and I have not seen the pictures we took yet.

The next week was full of Briefs (a meeting to give info), Coffees (basically an officer's wives get together) and a Hail & Farewell (an officer/spouse dinner and meeting welcoming new officers to the unit and saying goodbye to those leaving). On top of that Angel was teaching a Marriage Retreat for about 15 couples from his unit. The retreat was held at Lakeway Resort and Spa on Lake Travis outside of Austin. It was a beautiful place!! Even though I did not attend the entire retreat, I came for the couples dinner and spent the night with the girls.

On that Saturday we headed out from Austin, TX towards Tampa FL. With the approaching deployment, we decided to take a nice family vacation so we were going to Tampa FL to catch a cruise to Grand Caymen and Cozumel. This was not our families first cruise...but our 3rd one!!
Upon our arrival in Tampa, we stopped to visit with some old friends, Rainy and Paul. We went to their house for a short visit since they had sick kids and our kids needed a good nights sleep before boarding the ship the next morning.

On Monday, we met up with my parents (Mom Mom and Pop Pop) and my aunt and uncle who live in Fort Wayne, IN. All of us were cruising together and we had a great time. Just getting away, not worrying about cooking, cleaning, etc was a nice break for me. The girls enjoyed swimming everyday and attending the Children's Camp the cruise line offered. They even were able to participate in the ship's Holiday Show.

After the 5 days were over, we jumped in the car and made a marathon trip from FL to PA. We left Tampa at 12 Noon on Saturday and arrived in Hanover, PA on Sunday morning at 6AM. Thankfully my dad joined us on our drive and we split the driving between three drivers.

I was excited to be back in PA, even if only for a week. I hadn't seen my sister in over a year and it was great to see her and her family when they came over for lunch on Sunday afternoon. Wow, her kids had really grown in the last year. Victoria (almost 4 yrs old) and her cousin, Ilayna (3) got themselves into Mom Mom's makeup (see the picture ) but they had a good time with their cousins.

The week in PA was extremely busy, catching up on the last year, visiting family and friends we hadn't seen in quite some time and taking time to remember the reason for the season. I feel bad that we could not fit everyone into our schedule. Hopefully next year the girls and I will be able to visit again for a longer time. While in PA I got a very nice Christmas present... a 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan. It is so nice to have a dependable vehicle :) that has a warranty!

Last Saturday we left PA and started our trek back to Texas. When you Mapquest the trip, it is 24 hours of driving and that is without stops. After the marathon trip to PA, we decided to take our time and even stop and stay overnight. We didn't quite have enough time in our schedule to do any sightseeing, but the trip was very managable.

This past week has been busy too, taking care of registering the van in Texas, getting our wills completed and tying up loose ends before the end of the year. I don't know about you but I am ready for a fresh start. I am glad that His mercies are new every morning!

As we enter this new year, expect God to do great things with you...expect God to do great things through you!!

November 2008

You may be reading the title and thinking...why is she giving a November update when it's the last day in December? I am trying to break out the last 6 weeks into more managable, bite-sized pieces and doing a November and December post separately sounded better to me.

The last week of the month, Angel's mom Sara came for a visit (the girls call her abuela). It was nice to see her since it had almost been a year since the last time we were together. We had lots of things planned for the week that she was here. We all went to breakfast bowling at the bowling alley on post. They have a great deal...breakfast and a game of bowling for $3.50 The breakfast includes two eggs, hashbrowns, toast, bacon or sausage and a drink.

The next day was Thanksgiving and Breanna's 2nd Birthday. Since Angel was serving Thanksgiving dinner in the BlackJack Dining Hall, we all decided to eat dinner at the DFAC (dining facility). It was a nice spread, including shrimp coctail! And if you know me, I love my seafood :)

We came back to our house with some friends and celebrated Breanna's 2nd Birthday. I can't believe she is two years old already. She had fun singing and opening presents.

We ended up with a sick kid Thanksgiving night, so some of our plans of things to do with abuela got put on hold. We wanted to make sure that we took Angel's mom to see Nature in Lights at BLORA and even though we postponed it due to sickness, we made sure to get it in. This year we stopped for popcorn and hot chocolate to top off the night.

I can't believe how quick our time with abuela came and went. Next thing we knew, she was packing her bags and we were off to the airport.