Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Goodbye Aspen....

When you make the decision to get a pet, you are not thinking about how you feel when the pet dies.

The excitement, the newness, the new puppy smell, the middle of the night barks while your new puppy gets used to his little crate next to your bed.

It's exhausting, yet exhilarating, at first.

Lem and I got Aspen, our Siberian husky, after we had only been married for one month.

She was our very first baby. Our first step to having a family.

Aspen never left my chest the first few weeks.

Then she got big.

Much bigger.

The next year, we got our sweet Jack Russell, Holly.

It took them a little while to adjust to each other, then they were soon best of friends.

Holly was so tiny, but she would bark at Aspen, right in her face. It was hilarious. {see picture below}

Then we built a house in 2000.

We got busier.

We had our first child in 2001.

Lem became the main care giver of our two dogs and our cat, Tiger, by this point.

I still loved our pets, but I had a newborn. My life was a bit different.

Lem became both of their masters.

I was a little jealous at first, but I was really too busy to let it affect me.

They have lived with us. They have {all 3 of  our pets} lived in every house we have ever lived in.

4 so far.

Our cat, Tiger, died a few months ago. It was very sudden and very sad. He was about 17 years old.

He had a good, long life.

Our sweet Aspen, the Siberian husky, died today.

It is very very hard.

She was a part of our family.

She has been with us since the month after Lem and I began our life together.

She has always been with us. Always.

She annoyed me at times, because she shed like a sheep. Her white fur would be all over my hard wood floors. And my clothing. Everywhere.

I will miss that fur.

I will miss her.

Our sweet Holly, the Jack Russell, will begin a new season of life without her friends.

I am sad for her.

I am just plain sad.

The lump in my throat is bigger than the state of Georgia.

My nose is dripping as I type.

Animals become family.

Our Aspen has probably found some very cold, white, snow in Heaven to frolic around in. She and Tiger, our cat, are together again.

They were actually the best of friends. They would snuggle together in the cold months. It was so precious.

Okay, lump is coming in my throat again.

Goodbye, Aspen. We will see you again. I just know we will.

The week we brought her home.

Lem and his girl, Aspen

Holly barking at Aspen

Thursday, June 20, 2013

You are always on my mind?

I sent this to our SHINE prayer girls, but feel very led to post this here as well.

I just want to encourage you {again} to stay in God's Word this Summer. If you are anything like me, your schedule is kind of all over the place right now.

Let's don't let this keep us away from the only thing we really ever need--His Word.

My kids are with me pretty much 24/7 right now, which is wonderful! However, this makes for not a whole lot of time for getting alone with Him, except for early in the mornings.

He is showing me though, that my time with them is a part of my time with HIM! When I am enjoying the laughter, the fun, and even the not so fun moments with them, it's all a part of Him molding me through being their momma.

I learn SO MUCH when I just soak in the chaotic moment with them, instead of hurrying along through my day waiting for a chance to sit down and relax.

Whatever your days are looking like right now, I encourage you to give your thoughts to Him. Give your Thanksgiving to Him! Just praise Him in your moments. It makes a HUGE difference in my day when I do this!

Just today, I lost my temper {again} with one of my children. As soon as I heard the words coming out, I wanted to reel them back in. Shoot.

It was just another opportunity to tell those little darlings that I have to work on my tongue too. I have to think, before I talk. A lot. 

Many times I miss the mark, and it all just comes out, ugly and all.

It just forces me to drop to my knees, and submit to Him my need for Him. My need to keep Him ever on my mind and in my thoughts.

So, when you feel overwhelmed, stressed, and ummmm, angry-ish.....

  • Thank Him that you have kids to be with.
  • Thank Him that you have kids to discipline. {over and over} ;)
  • Thank Him that you have a house to clean. 
  • Thank Him for those orange-stained-from-cheese puffs fingers that you are constantly wiping clean. 
  • Thank Him that no matter what age your children are, it's never too late--or too early-- to teach them. Ever. 
  • Thank Him for these long days of Summer that give us extra time to be outside and enjoy His creation and wonder.
  • Thank Him for the job you have if you work outside of the home. Many are without a job. 
Perhaps this is all just a reminder to yours truly here to keep Him at the forefront. Of every area of my life.

always on my mind--or at least working on it,


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Fathers, Daughters, and Birthdays.....

Happy Birthday AND Father's Day to my AWESOME daddy! 

It takes a really special guy to share his birthday with Father's Day, right?

Yes, I think so too.

Here are some things that I love about my Dad:
  • he is so funny and witty. 
  • he loves my mom so much
  • he loves my children and ALL of his grandchildren.
  • he loves me and would do anything for me.
  • he is a hard worker. 
  • everybody loves my dad.
  • dad forgives and forgets very easily.
  • he can always make you laugh.
  • he loves the Lord.
  • presley loves sitting in Paw Paw's lap.
  • he takes my kids to the store and buys them anything they want. 
  • he is the BEST Daddy in the whole world!

probably telling me a joke ;)

he loves his grandbabies!

Look how perfect they are!

Presley's favorite place to sit.

celebrating Dad and Lem last year 2012

Presley takes a ride on the harley with Dad

Joseph's turn!

Joseph wants another ride!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

7 Quick Beach Takes...

St. Simon's Island June 2013

1.Here we go--Peace out dudes!
2. Hitting the beach--surfing style!
3. Look who we found--the Laffan girls! 
4. My Love and my favorite place to be. Ever. 
5. Silly girls being silly. 
6. Silly girls trying to be serious. I said trying.
7. The littlest loves of my life. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

4 Days late and always at least a dollar short....

Day late and a dollar short on my birthday man's post. 
My plate is a little full these days. 
Rest assured, he was well celebrated.
He's finally 38!
 He caught up with me.
Yes, he's younger. 
But, only by a hair. 
No pun intended, darlin.
I love this young dude.
He's still hot.
I remember when I first met him.
He was so different than any other boy.
His country little accent....oh, I still swoon.
{Except when he's mad at me for overspending. No swooning then}
I love Lem's confidence. 
It's sexy to me.
He makes me feel beautiful. 
{even when I'm not feeling it even an ounce}
He loves me.
I love him.
We just fit.
Plus, we have cute kiddos.
One of each of us.
Joseph looks like me, acts like me, and loves to read like me.
Presley looks like Lem, acts JUST like Lem, and hates to read like Lem.
We have duplicated ourselves.
{Scary thought}
Lord, help them. 
In all sincerity. 

this is how i feel after forgetting to do Lem's birthday post.
{my tongue needs help. really, it does.}
Here he birthday boy!
This is us in the car on a pre-birthday date night.
Yeah, I swoon.

Joseph gives Daddy the thumbs up on his big day.
He's a little sweaty.
We had just finished a 30 minute run.
In 92 degree heat.
I sweat just remembering it.
Presley made his birthday breakfast.
be still my heart.
she does this for me too on my big day.
i love her.
sushi was the birthday boy's dinner.
i think we enjoyed it, what do you think.

Happy Birthday, Lem!
I sure love you!

{even after all these birthdays!}
wink, wink

Monday, June 10, 2013

A girl can change her mind....

I was having a conversation with a friend recently and I told her this: "One thing is for sure, today I may feel one way about something. However, next week, I may feel completely different."

Someone asked for my advice about something a few days ago and I prefaced it with this "Today, I think...."

This sounds really wishy washy and blase. I know this.

However, I think it is actually the contrary.

We are constantly being changed, renewed, sharpened, and shined by the Lord. Right?

"Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect." Romans 12:2

See what I mean? :)

I think the older I get, the more sure of one thing I know---I do not have it figured out. And I never will until I meet Jesus at His Throne. Hopefully then, He will make sense of all this world-y stuff.

My convictions are very strong some days about certain things in my own life. Other days, I am unsure of what God really is asking of me. Are these Jill's convictions for herself or are these convictions from the Lord?

It's a tough call some days. I can be very black and white in certain areas in my life.

Is Jesus black and white? Or is He black, white, and gray as well?

I do know this: Grace can be gray for me sometimes. If that makes any kind of sense.

The Bible is very clear regarding certain behaviors that we are to adhere to and abstain from.

However, other things, are not so clear to me.

This is where the gray area comes in. This is where I have to go to Him, His Word, and talk to Him. Seek Him, and ask Him to show me what to do.

Sometimes, I am still unsure--if I am being honest.

This is where Grace comes in. I have to just realize that I will mess up some days, I will go the wrong way. Even when I am really, really, really trying to go the right way.

God will reign me back in with His Grace. Just like He always does.

This, I know.

black, white, and a lot of gray,