Tuesday, February 26, 2008

My WESTON is 20 years old today!!!!

(ok...I got a little carried away with the pictures and words...but you only turn 20 one time!)

My Dearest Son,

20 years ago today I experienced an instantaneous, overwhelming feeling of love like never before... holding you, my first born.

You were a dream come true. An answer to prayer. A beautiful baby... weighing in at 9 lbs. 12 oz. with lots of hair.

You and I both had to fight for our lives that day. I know I have held that over your head at times trying to bribe you with..."I almost died giving birth to you" ... but I would do it all over again if I had to.

You did push ups with in the first two hours of
your life. Your dad and a deacon from our church witnessed it... and then you did it again!

I would take you shopping and would literally have strangers stop me and tell me, "That is the most beautiful baby I have ever seen." ...and their babies would be right there with them.

You were always strong and determined. When you were 5 months old you decided to crawl. You would crawl to the fireplace hearth, pull yourself up, and try to walk. You did it over and over and over...and you succeeded to walk at 7 1/2 months old. The elderly ladies at our church commentated in their southern drawls, "Honey, he's going to be bow-legged walking so early."

I thought, "What can I do? Tie him to a chair?"

You have had that determination throughout your life... with things you wanted to do... as well as things you didn't!

At 2, you h
it the ball with the bat when it was pitched to you.

Your love for golf started before 2 years old. When you were 4 years old you decided you wanted to golf like daddy. So
you took your plastic golf club and ball, we stuck a tee into an upside down Styrofoam bowl and you practiced for hours until you could hit that ball. You drove it 125 yards at 4 years old at the par 3 golf course...out driving many of the lady golfers that day.

You started banging on the piano before you were 1.

At age 4 you started piano lessons and it was discovered you have a God-given ear for music.

You asked Jesus in your heart
on March 10,
1991, at 3 years old. I remember it vividly. You said, Mommy, I need to go up to the altar and ask Jesus in my heart. We went up and prayed together. Then at 5, Dad had the privilege of baptizing you in water. I remember you couldn't touch the bottom of the tank. Dad held you up and when you went under water, your feet flew up at the other end. There is no greater parenting joy then this!

You always stood out in a crowd. Getting chosen on your first Disney world trip to be the "guest host" at the character breakfast and sang, "M-I-C - see ya real soon...K-E-Y - Why? Because we like you." M-O-U-S-E."

In first grade you were chosen to sing the solo in the program.

In sixth grade to have the lead in the musical...Both times the teacher asked me to please talk you into performing because you had the best voice and pitch in the class.

Even though it wasn't you first choice to be 'up front' you did it...and you did it extremely well...putting your heart and soul into each performance... then saying after it was over...
"I am never doing that again!"

At 8, soccer became your passion. You tried out for travel soccer for the U11 team and made it!

At 10 you started playing the drums... at 11, the guitar...and practiced and practiced to play those rhythm patterns and hard chords. AND, the guitar, you discovered was your true gift and passion from the Lord.

(here you are with your very first guitar with your cousin, Jordan.
I was reading in your baby book that at age 2 you loved to 'play your guitar and sing, "Are you ready for some football!")

When we moved before your 10th grade year, you approached your new school with courage. You prayed and knew this was God's plan for our family.

In 11th grade, you felt the LORD prompting you to give up soccer to dedicate your time to playing your guitar for youth group. We were very proud of you for making that choice.

We are so thankful that during high school you didn't fall into the traps many teenagers fall into. Your favorite place to be was church and with your friends from church. And then, you gave up Sundays in the church you love to play for The Oaks church plant in Royal Oak from their first service until you left for North Central.

We have seen many hairstyles!

(I am sure this Razorback shaved in your head was Dad's favorite!)

And you were handsome with all of them.

You are a great big brother.

Always willing to play with Brianna even though she was 7 years younger.

You have been a source of great joy for us...bringing laughter and fun into our home.

And you were Always our dare devil!

We watched you graduate. Go off to college.

You are using your gifts and abilities in Minneapolis. Preparing to go for your dreams.

NOW... here you are
. No longer a teenager, but a young man! I can't believe how time has gone by. I am a bit sad, today, though, that we are not there to celebrate with you. This growing up, letting go thing is not easy for a mom!

Weston, we are so very proud of you. We love you with all of our hearts. We are so thankful that you love the LORD with all your heart. That you are courageously taking on new adventures and stretching yourself in areas that are new for you.

We have great pride in the gifts and abilities GOD has given you, but most importantly, we are blessed you use them for HIS glory.

Thanks for making this journey of Motherhood a wonderful trip.

And remember, just because you are 20, DOESN'T mean you don't need to call your mom anymore! After all, "I almost died giving birth to you!!!!"

I love you! And HAPPY 20th Birthday!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Happy Birthday, Hubby!

On February 22, 1962 the man of my dreams was born. (For those of you trying to do the math, his is 46 today.)

He doesn't like a big ta-doo made over him on his big day. TOO BAD, Sweetie Pie! You really don't have a say. It is MY blog.

We have now been married over half of our lives. Wow. How time flies when you're having fun.

Here's a little pictorial 'blast from the past'.

When I first celebrated your birthday with you in 1984, we were at my house and you received your first infamous cake made by my mom...you turned 22.

You have matured from this 18 year old young man

ready to take on the world...

and this 22 year old guy who swept me off of my feet...

to the wonderful man you are today. Thanks for giving me this half of your life... for being the great dad that you are...

I just wanted to say I love you with all of my heart.

I am looking forward to the second half of our lives...because every year just gets better!

I hope you have a GREAT DAY...

....and enjoy your German Chocolate cake made from scratch by Brianna.

And the breakfast of eggs, bacon, and biscuits
she made for you this morning!

With Brianna taking over all of these Birthday Specials that have been my joy these last 24 years... I feel...well...GREAT!

So NOW what do I do for your big day?

I guess I will take you out to eat...unless Brianna makes you dinner!!!

Happy Birthday! WE LOVE YOU!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Brianna's Reward!

Before Brianna's night of shoveling snow, we had planned a trip to Minneapolis. Steve had a Missional Church conference at North Central University so Brianna and I had planned to tag a long, visit Weston and, of course, hang out at the Mall of America.

Steve had checked on hotels and found the Radisson Hotel...

...which also housed the "Water Park of America" was offering a GREAT RATE...less expensive than the other regular hotels around. SO we surprised our blossoming entrepreneur with a day at the indoor water park.
We had a great time. A great room. And Brianna was thrilled with her 'compensation".

It was a little strange, though, swimming, going down water slides, and floating in the lazy river while looking outside and seeing snow.

AND knowing that day was one of the coldest of the year...20 degrees below zero! YIKES! Why didn't they have this FEBRUARY conference in FLORIDA?????

I think they need to put me on the planning committee for the next one!

Thank the Lord the hotel had heated parking!

AND best of all, we got to see Weston...and hear him play at his church in Minneapolis, Emmanuel Christian Center. We are SO PROUD! God has truly given him a gift.

....and we were able to take 5 of his friends out for dinner.
(of course I forgot my camera so I had to copy these from facebook!)

Weston & Jonathan Palmer featuring Jonathan as the human snow plow!!!! (during and after!)

(great friends, suitemates, USTT wannabes,
Rook Champs, and
"Old Fashioned Worship" planners!)

Zach Brose, (great friend and feels like a part of our family after visiting over Christmas!)
Dave Krist (Great friend at NCU from Day 1, suitemate, Michigan PK, and fellow guitar crazed guy)
& Weston

Weston and NCU roomie, Ben Cline at Ben's house over Labor Day...

(BTW, Ben was at the sub-zero temp Green Bay playoff game! I am
SURE that is why they didn't win, Ben...it was too cold....)

Weston & Pete Obermesik
(Weston's first friend at the church we pastored in Mt. Pleasant....) Pete and some guys he met at North Central have a band, Nihlio. They are winning band competetions all over the Twin Cities.

Thanks Guys, for letting us feed you!

You all are very dear to our hearts and we are thankful to have you in our lives.

AND...for BRIANNA'S SNOW REMOVAL...call 1.800.snowbegone!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Last night when it was snowing and snowing... and church was canceled... and Steve had a late night at the office with building problems... Brianna decided she would shovel.

We have friends who were out of town, coming back around 10 pm. I started shoveling the heavy snow from their driveway but my back screamed "DON'T DO THIS." SO I listened. I decided I wanted to walk today.

So BRIANNA decided to take over. She shoveled the rest of their driveway so they wouldn't have to traipse through the snow to unload their luggage.

THEN we came home and she decided to shovel for Steve. She had cleared the left half of the driveway...to the mailbox. I said, "That is good, Sweetie. Enough so we can get in and out."

To which my little hardworking bee buzzed, "NO WAY! Sometimes HARD WORK leads to COMPENSATION! I am NOT quitting!"

SO she proceeded to finish the driveway.

AND THEN the lady across the street was shoveling so she asked her if she could help. The neighbor declined saying her husband would be home soon and he would finish...but that BRIANNA was a sweetheart for offering.

Well, DAD came home....was OVERWHELMINGLY SURPRISED...and declared..."Sweetie, You will be rewarded!" ...which was music to 12
year old ears.

My friend NETTA had a GREAT POST the other day about working and serving...It really spoke to my heart and got me thinking about all of this.

I am so grateful to our loving FATHER GOD that we don't have to WORK HARD for our salvation! It is the GREATEST FREE GIFT EVER!

HOWEVER, I desire to work hard at the what he calls me to every day... loving unconditionally,
sharing Jesus,
cooking, (frown),
cleaning, (frown, frown, SCREAM!)...

and HIS word says....

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving." Colossians 3:23-24

I thought about this as Brianna said those words....

2 Chronicles 15:7: "But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded."

To My Wonderful Hubby I know you will keep your WORD...and...

"Give her the reward she has earned; she should be praised in public for what she has done. (Proverbs 31:31)

So a good lesson for all on this wintry day....

Work hard. You may just get a reward!