Sunday, December 30, 2007

life is a blur...

These past few weeks really have been a blur for Justin and I. Personally, I would not suggest that anyone move during the Christmas season. Not that any other time is any less crazy for a move, but we seemed to keep accumulating so much stuff during the weeks leading up to Christmas (and I am thankful for those gifts!) that made it even more difficult to get packed.

We packed up in Roxboro on Thursday with such amazing help from many Westwood people. THANK YOU ALL!! We had no idea how much stuff we really did have. It's mostly all unpacked right now except our many books and I'm going to work on those tomorrow. It was not hard for us to leave our house. It was not hard for us to leave Roxboro. It was hard to leave our Westwood friends that have become our family. I realized that so much more today when we worshipped with our new church in Elkin. It's so different worshipping with people you have yet to really know. I am thankful, though, that we worship the same God and I know He will provide great friendships here and new opportunities for us to serve in Elkin.

I absolutely love our new house in Elkin and can't wait for everyone to come visit! (This is your official invitation). We're still waiting on our new sofa and loveseat to come and then we'll be ready to host some get-to-gethers! We have so much space to really spread out and enjoy all of the things we've had stored. For instance, we're now able to keep our keyboard up all the time so I enjoyed a nice relaxing hour of playing through some old music tonight. And...we have two bathrooms! Luxury. Unfortunately, we are sharing our house with a gazillion ladybugs. Better them than roaches or rats, I know, but any extermination or prevention advice is welcome.

Today was a little weird because we walked to church - a new, but welcome, experience. We literally just have to walk around a fence and we are there. We also spent the rest of the day in Winston-Salem looking for pots to accomodate our new house plants and a few other items- yes, it took all day for some reason. It's fun to actually have space to decorate with some new stuff. Anyway...just a glimpse into our life in Elkin...still in a blur.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

fa la la la la

Sheila tagged me for a Holiday Hoopla! The Random Christmas Hoopla! Here goes:

1. List 12 random things about yourself that have to do with Christmas
2. Please refer to it as a 'hoopla' and not the dreaded 'm'-word (which, for you bloggy newbies, is meme)
3. You have to specifically tag people when you're done. None of this "if you're reading this, consider yourself tagged" stuff is allowed...then nobody ends up actually doing it. The number of people who you tag is really up to you -- but the more, the merrier to get this 'hoopla' circulating through the blogosphere.
4. Please try and do it as quickly as possible. The Christmas season will be over before we know it and I'd like to get as many people involved as possible.

1. I am not a fan of colored Christmas lights...I am definitely on board with the clear lights and I think that's how it's always going to be.

2. In more decorating love for silver jewelry also translates to the tree. I'll always pick ornaments that incorporate silver, not gold accents...I can be so picky.

3. So, I love the fact that my dad literally looks like Santa Clause (see picture below). All year, but especially around Christmas, you can be anywhere with my dad and kids are staring at him and whispering to their parents. I love to watch kids come up to my dad and talk to him. He's always been great with children, so it's so fun to watch.

4. This year, my house probably has the saddest decorating "on the block" and I hate that. I love decorating the house...not just for Christmas, but at the change of the seasons. This year my decorations consist of Christmas cards we've received on the mantle, the stockings I finally bought us this year, and presents I've wrapped stuffed on the shelf since we've already packed our books. Boo. As sad as that's probably good...Jazz would have way too much "fun" with a Christmas tree!

5. I really shop for Christmas all year. Anytime I find a great sale gift for someone, I pick it up. Lots of times, this means I forget what I have bought and end up buying more than I probably should. This early shopping really lowered my stress level this year...I had almost everyone bought for before December even rolled around!

6. I'm a big fan of gifts...I don't really know's even one of my highest love languages (fortunate and unfortunate for Justin!) I have never been given the opportunity to give my parents or anyone else a Christmas list of what I would like, however, so it cracks me up when I hear people doing that. If my mom had let us do a Christmas list, though, it would have saved her a lot of time not buying clothes for me that I have never liked. We have very different tastes! (Don't be appalled...she already knows!)

7. I'll always remember a Christmas that fell on Sunday when my sister and I were little. We, of course, went to church that day, but our parents wouldn't let us open our gifts before church. They had a children's sermon at church that day and whoever was leading it asked all the kids if anyone had not opened their gifts yet. My sister and I were the only ones! But...I'm glad I have parents have their priorities in embarrassing as it may have been that day.

8. I can't wait till we start having children and can really begin to define what we want our Christmas traditions to be for them. Right now, it's just great that we can travel and see our families whenever it works best.

9. I love one tradition that we seem to have at my parent's house. On Christmas day, after we've opened gifts, my sister will usually make monkey of her specialties...which is oh so delicious!

10. When I think of Christmas, I can't help remember how many years my sister and I would sleep in the same bed...eagerly anticipating Christmas morning. I don't know why, but we could never get to sleep...when we would finally doze off we would still wake up so early in the morning to run downstairs to open presents.

11. I really was not wise in my packing...I totally packed up "White Christmas," which I love to watch every year. I'm sure Justin is not quite as upset as I am.

12. I love driving around looking at Christmas lights. I must admit, I'm not a fan of a lot of them, but as I was listening to the radio last night, my perspective changed a bit. One of the short commercial segments reminded me that everyone's different tastes in Christmas lights truly reflect the different personalities God has given us. Instead of defining decorations as tacky or ridiculous or gaudy (which I have been guilty of), I hope I will remember to thank God and celebrate the unique ways he has made all of His creation, reflected in the ways we choose to decorate and express our personalities.

Merry Christmas!

I tag Rebecca...cause she needs to blog anyway :)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

my day

I needed to get my car checked out because the "check engine" light came on a little while ago. So, I finally broke down (no pun intended) and got my car checked out and treated her to an oil change as well. One of the guys working at the car place came to the waiting room and asked me to come out to the work area and look at my car. He proceeded to tell me that the reason my "check engine" light had been on was because I had not completely closed my gas cap the last time I got gas, which triggered it to come on. I was so relieved to know it was nothing bad! But then...seriously...he demonstrated for me how to close the gas cap properly (making sure that it makes a clicking noise, of course). I really had to keep myself from laughing. I could just imagine him doing the same for a man!! It always cracks me up to go to the mechanic and listen to them explain car things to women. Anyway...I thought it was funny, and I guess I was in a good mood because I didn't even feel insulted.

Another part of our day has consisted of watching our poor little puppy walk around so helplessly. We had her fixed today and we picked her up about 5:30. She is so pitiful! It's killing us. Anyone who's been around Jazz knows that she is anything but slow and quiet. It's so hard to watch her in pain. Hopefully she will heal well.

My friend Jen is on her way home from India now! I'm going to meet her flight at 8:00 Friday morning. I can't wait to see her! Pray for her safety!

Monday, December 10, 2007


These last few weeks have been a little overwhelming, to say the least. I can't believe this is our last full week living in Roxboro. I've never actually been through a huge move like this since my family moved in 5th grade. And then, I wasn't exactly "in charge" of the move. I'm sure I just did what my parents said to do. (Now, here I am all grown up!) Our house is just full of boxes...there's hardly any room to move in our already small house and as crazy as it feels for me, I think that it's driving Jazz even crazier. Poor dog!

The other weekend we spent some time cleaning up and painting the house we will be living in in Elkin. We are so blessed to be able to live in one of the parsonages that the church has and we won't have to search for a place of our own.

Here are a few before and after pictures of the house:

The Living Room - we had to get rid of the border!

Our new green paint color (that looks blue)
The Dining room

Our kitchen - bold red color for Justin

Our house...the church is literally right beside it. I'm surprised it's not in the picture!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

the in between

Its been hard to blog over this last month. So much has been going on in our lives, but its hard to know when and what to share. Some things I can't even explain. God's ways are truly above ours, and some times that is more obvious than at other times - at least for me (Isaiah 55:8). Without a doubt, these last few weeks have been some of the hardest, yet at the same time, the most relieving. It is more difficult than I could ever have imagined to tell a congregation whom you love that God is calling you away from them. There have been some people who are obviously hurt by this change in our lives, and for that, I am completely humbled. 2 1/2 years in Roxboro has proved to be interesting, challenging, and thrilling, as Justin and I began our relationship with one another when he was first called to Westwood. We are so thankful for every person in our church family whom God has used to mold us, grow us, and prepare us for what He has for the next chapter of our lives. God has blessed us more than we could ever have imagined in a town that we had never even heard of before and we know that He has great plans for our next area of ministry, even though we have yet to know how.

I think that being married to Justin has prepared me for change...he certainly is a fan of it. I feel completely at peace about moving to Elkin, but that does not mean a piece of us won't be left in Roxboro. There are several young women I have worked with at the Pregnancy Support Center who I just don't understand how God could ask me to leave behind. But I know He has others who can lead them closer to Himself...hopefully I have laid a good foundation. It has been eye-opening for me to be reminded over these last weeks that I am replaceable. Maybe not "replaceable." I know there is no one else just like me! the since that God uses us where He can be most glorified and we can grow for a season, and then moves us to where He can continue to change us for His glory as He brings someone else in to lead His people closer to Him (as in Justin's position) and brings someone in to administrate vision (as in my position). I so look forward to how God continues the work He has allowed us to be a part of in Roxboro while at the same time being excited about the new opportunities that await us.

I hope to share more of our preparations for this move over the next weeks. Thank you for your prayers for us! Sorry, there will be no new recipes for awhile...I'm trying to clean out what we've already got!