Sunday, August 2, 2009

Sunday Morning Overheards







Overheard #1


Mother of Preschooler to Preschool Teacher: "My son has been talking about Jesus all week and he has never done that before. H is learning so much here. Thank you for what you guys are doing."




Overheard #2


Mother of 6 year old to Children's Volunteer: "I lost my debit card this week and my son says, "Mom let's pray and ask Jesus to help you find your card." Isn't amazing how children just get it? They learn about Jesus here and they just get it?"



Dear Father, Thank you for every one of our volunteers that chooses to worship You each week by serving the children and families You have entrusted into our hands on Sunday mornings. Thank you for their commitment to teaching our children that they are loved by you, that they were created to be an answer that our world needs, that you care about the details of their everyday life, that they will always be embraced by us. I am honored to serve with such an amazing team! We truly are blessed...thank you!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Recap Post

A few things we have been up to the past 2 weeks:


Visiting Grandparents:




Playing with Cousins:




Cherishing a few moments of "Girls only" time and celebrating Baby "Jonah's upcoming arrival (My sister, Melanie's 6th baby...5th boy!):
(Sorry...couldn't get the picture to turn!)




(The guys got some alone time too...just no camera's were allowed on the putting greens)

Enjoying Each other:


A trip to Peru:



The staff of our FRC Lima Campus



Didn't get many pics of our Peru trip, but man, it was amazing to meet people who speak a different language and who live in a different country but who serve the same God and who are also called to partner with people to help them reach their God-potential..makes you feel like you are family in 2 minutes flat of non-interpreted conversation.


All this visiting and traveling has left us delightfully.....


EXHAUSTED.....and...


PLEASANTLY POOPED:



We really are Sunscorched and Satisfied.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

God in the Details...Part 2

Love this clip of Chris and Max. Reminds me of how we as God's children desperately hunger for more of God that we run and chase after Him anticpating the moment like that of a loving Father, He turns around and starts chasing us!! Those are the moments we had better buckle up and hold on!! Daddy is gonna pour Himself out on you!!



video

God in the details..part 1

One thing that I am asking God to teach me lately is not to miss Him in the details. I don't know if it is the change of scenery, the change of schedule, the extra rest, or a combination of all three, but man, I cherish vacations because they help me to see God in the midst of many details of everyday life that I know I have missed time and time again.


This week, I have resolved to learn to see God in the details of my day to day life. I could go on and on about why I miss this and the things in my past that contribute to my struggle with this, but I will spare you all and save it for another day :) Just know, this is going to be a BIG one for me. I do not want to miss one thing God is speaking to me, one way He is loving me, or one lesson He is teaching me.


In order to get things started on the right foot, I thought I would post over the next few days some of my every day details that I have seen God in this week:


1. Children worshipping. I know the pics are a poor depiction of this story, but we went to a church event Friday night, and I noticed that Jack kept moving away from people (NOT AT ALL like Jack)...I soon realized that he wanted to be alone to worship. Here he is raising his hands in his own world while we sang, "How Great is our God."


The gymnasium where this event was held was packed with children. Looking out from the top row of the bleachers and seeing children raising their hands in worship...took my breath away. Even children understand that we serve a God that is worthy of our worship.



































Thursday, July 16, 2009

White Boys Can't Dance

There is no hope for us! Man....they're white!

Annie already knows her "right" from her "left" though!!

video

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Eye of a Tiger
















Chris and I are about to embark on a journey that seems to me like it would make a great finale run in the Amazing Race. Basically, we are driving to Charlotte, visiting family for a few days and then leaving the kids with family while we fly back to Fl in time to catch a flight to Lima, Peru (YEA!) to visit FRC's campus there, then we fly back to Fl in time to catch flight back to Charlotte to pick up the kids, and drive 13 hrs home to FL. Makes me tired just typing it. They really should do a leg of the Amazing Race where the contestants must travel with multiple kids that they have to keep safe and happy....only those with the "Eye of a Tiger" would survive!

We are super excited though! We can't wait to spend some time with family and we can't wait to visit the campus in Peru! We've been hearing so many beautiful stories about what God is doing through Flamingo Road Church there, and now we will get to see it with our own eyes!

Yesterday, Chris and I had this great idea: We would keep the kids up all day (super hard to do on a Sunday) and all of us would crash at 6pm. We would get up at 12am, put the kids in the car, and drive through the night. Well, shoot!...here it is 8pm and both Jack and Annie are too overtired to fall asleep. Our plan has back-fired. We had this all figured out and no one but Max can sleep!

Oh, well, we'll still head out and get as far as we can without stopping, which will probably be the entire trip. Yes, my man could kick some Amazing Race tail...He's got the "Eye of a Tiger." :)

Friday, July 10, 2009

FEAR




"Fear is simply Faith in what Satan says"
--Joyce Meyer







Satan Says: "You'll never be good enough."
God says: "You are more than enough. You are complete in me." (Ephesians 3:14)


Satan Says: "You cannot do this."
God says: "Do not Fear, I am holding your hand, and I will help you." (Isa. 41:13)


Today, I refuse to put faith in Satans words and instead will place my faith in God's promises to me. Today I refuse FEAR.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Summer Do's

The boy's sporting their new do's:

Here they are trying to give their "tough guy" looks:




A few of Annie just because it's been awhile:




Monday, July 6, 2009

bloggers book study

I am a little late posting this, but make sure you check out the bloggers book study. Several bloggers from our FRC team are working through 6 books this summer and posting summaries of each chapter on their blogs. Pretty interesting and a fun way to learn!

You can follow the study by clicking here.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Blogging return/Cooking strike

It is time to crank this thing up! I am actually looking forward to posting again. I have to admit that I kind of missed it.

But I did enjoy my break. Not only did I take a break from blogging, but cooking as well. Yep, a whole month without cooking! We ate a LOT of cereal, popcorn, and deli sandwiches. The kids loved it. Chris complained very little and he lost a few pounds so I think he was cool with the whole deal.

I am dreading cooking again....why do I dread it so bad? To me, it is a colossal waste of time: think about what to cook...come up empty, so peruse allrecipes.com for 45min, make a list of needed ingredients, go buy them, unload the car, put them away, pull them out, cook, set the table, feed kids, eat dinner, clear the table, load the dishwasher, sweep the floor, pick up every last crumb so the army of ants doesn't invade us...(all the while wishing you were outside playing with the kids and their daddy). When you're finally done, and it is time to RELAX....Wouldn't you know it, you're hungry again, and now the dishwasher is ready to be unloaded!

Holy Cow, surely food should not take up this much of our day. I think I'm taking another month off cooking. Feel free to join me in a cooking strike if you would like...maybe we could make it a national month long holiday. :)

Here's what I thought of when I was a teenager who dreamed of being married and cooking daily:
Here's what comes to mind now:







Thursday, May 28, 2009

Blogging Break

I have an on-again, off-again relationship with this blog...makes me feel like I am in the middle of high school boyfriend drama again.



I refuse to deny the inevitable any longer; I am going to take an official blogging break. I know, I know, I have taken one for the past few weeks, but I have felt bad about it because I just stopped without saying anything...rude, I know.



One thing you should know about me: I am a messed up person. I have a lot of areas of my life that are just plain messy. I have a few specific things I know the Lord is asking me to crack down on, be obedient, do the hard work, trust Him, and overcome once and for all. That being said...Hard work takes time. And every time I add something routine to my life, something else has to give, and in this case, it is my blog. I am going to take a break for a month. But I plan to be back in full swing in July.



I feel weird blogging about taking a break...as if I have tons of readers or am some super important person that has to explain to the world why she is not going to be writing down her embarrassing moments, thoughts, frustrations, and laughs any more...but I do feel like I owe you a reason, mom. :)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Mom



As Mother's Day quickly approaches, I've found myself pinpointing times this week when I appreciate my mom the most:



  • When I am packing the kids' lunches for school..."Man, my mom did this for years and years for 5 kids....and she still fixes my lunch when I visit."

  • When I am cleaning toilets and scrubbing floors after a family bout with the stomach bug...again, "Wow...Mom did this for a family of 7 many, many times. Dear Jesus, bless her today for the many times she did that for us."

  • When I am lying in my kids' bed with them before bedtime and having conversations about life, God, and bad guys...."I miss the nights we used to lay at the end of mom and dad's bed and talk for hours as we delayed washing our faces and brushing our teeth...I learned so much from my mom about life, God....and come to think of it--about bad boys too :) at the end of that bed."

  • When I get up at the crack of dawn on Sundays to get myself and the gang ready for church..."I am glad 2 of our 3 are boys, and we are in a jeans-wearing church...it makes for very few dresses to iron, tights to put on, and hair bows to wrestle with. I can't believe mom did this every week for 4 girls and 1 boy, and she even insisted that we wear ironed dresses and hair bows. She had to have been on some kind of energy supplements :)."

  • When I get the honor of seeing my kids' faces light up as they excitedly explain to me the cool things that Jesus did when He lived here or when they can't wait to see another kid "say" they are on Jesus' team (referring to being baptized)..."God, I thank you for the incredible privilege of being raised in a God-centered home...the best gift any child could receive. Thank you, Jesus, for giving me a mom who loves You and seeks to honor You with her life. She is building a legacy that will far out live her life here on Earth. Thank you for my mom."


When do you appreciate your mom the most?

Monday, May 4, 2009

Easter pics


Easter Weekend---I still had not replaced my broken camera at this point, but began to feel a little panicky over the fact that Annie is almost a year old and has a total of 10 pictures (this is including snapshots!) since she was born. Being the problem solver that I am :), I called my friend Ileana, and asked her to snap a few pics of the kids before church. Thankfully, she obliged;Easter pics were taken; and my guilt was released! :)

P.S. Let's not talk about the fact that Annie has drool everywhere and Jack can't see because his hair is sooo long...Look beyond that---they really are cute kids :)






















Friday, May 1, 2009

You know you are a Brown when:

You'll do anything to get your hands on some food!

Seriously, we don't mess around when it comes to our food. Looks like Annie is gonna fit in just fine. :)



Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Things that make me go, "hmmm?"








  • How many times must you go up and back down the stairs in your house in a any given one hour period to check "workout" off your to do list for the day?


  • How many times in any given one hour period must you either A.Tweet (and to think supposedly the cool people do this...but yet they call it Tweet...hmmm??) or B. Check your Twitter account to be deemed a Twitter junkie?

Note: I do not have a Twitter account, I am just wondering for a few of my dear friends and a loved one..."ahem"... :)


  • Does pulling a piece of thread out of the hem of your jeans and getting the noticeable piece of pepper out of your teeth count as flossing?

  • Is it lying when your child's preschool teacher asks you how many hours of sleep your child is getting at night because he is "pretty irritable lately"...and you count from the time you put him in the bed rather than from the time he actually falls asleep (and you know there is a BIG difference between the two)?

  • If you haven't actually popped open a can of soda in years, but you drink 90% of your husbands when he pops one....who is healthier...you or your husband?

  • Are you a bad mom/person if the receptionist at your child's school called and asked if you would be willing to organize the teacher appreciation gift gathering for your child's preschool class and you said no? Just a "No"...followed by a simple, "I am not good at that kind of thing, sorry."

  • How about if you don't work and you are a stay-at-home mom...and you still said "No" to the receptionist?

  • OK...last mom guilt one: Are you a bad stay-at-home mom if your child's preschool teacher calls to ask you if you looked at your son's report card yet because it is still unsigned in his book bag and she put it in there "Days ago"?

Monday, April 27, 2009

The BIG Picture

I shared this journal entry with my team at HB, but feel prompted to share it here also:

As the few lingering guests drove away from Hallandale's parking lot, there I sat on the floor in the East Lobby playing with the kids, desperately trying to keep them contained, occupied, and out of Chris' way while he was counseling and praying with the last couple of the morning who had approached him after the service desperate for relationship restoration. As I waited for Chris, I thought to myself, "Here I am, playing "red light, green light " and "mother, may I?" with my kids and this little boy whose parents are in the office crying with Chris...Here I am, frantically scanning the empty lobby for the next idea of what I can possibly conjure up to keep all these kiddos safe and occupied while Chris is in his office, living out his God-given destiny. How unglamorous this can be for me...I wonder what my destiny is? Surely, it's a little more than taking child after child to the bathroom, helping them pull down their pants, pee, and wash their hands with one hand, because I have Annie in the other and even relaxed me refuses to set her on the bathroom floor. Here I am, doing things that are WAY behind the scenes, things I did not expect to do after church today. Actually, I planned on putting the kids in the car immediately following the 11am service and meeting my company that's in town for one more afternoon at Chipotle. That is what I had planned for the day, and here I am...."

God had planned otherwise. He had planned to use Chris to bring hurting couples to the cross where they would experience restoration and healing. And for Chris to be able to do what God had planned for him, I had to be cooperative and humble..two things I hate to admit that I struggle with...A LOT. I reasoned in that moment that I had 2 choices: 1. Be upset and frustrated that my plans were interrupted, that my kids were getting dirtier and dirtier by the second, and that I was at a complete loss as to how I was going to wipe Jack's bottom with Annie in one hand and Jack's half-eaten, but treasured lollipop in the other. OR, I could choose option 2. Option 2: I could thank God that He was using me to be a part of something BIG. Trust me, I know that keeping kids relatively calm and occupied why dad is praying with someone does not feel BIG (trust me, I KNOW :) But as I stood there in the bathroom, I couldn't help but thank God for allowing us to be a part of what He is doing through FRC. Serving in the ministry is not perfect. And for me, at least at this season of my life, It is less than glamorous more times than not. But, I refuse (with the Holy Spirit's strength..which I often need to do this :) to focus on how unglamorous it can look for me and the roles I am filling right now, and I choose to look at the how glamorous the BIG Picture is.
The BIG Picture is that God is moving and working through FRC. The BIG Picture is that hundreds of relationships were restored yesterday. The BIG Picture is that if I persevere on, I can have a part in hundreds more moments of life change like those of yesterday. The BIG Picture is that FRC WILL make a Kingdom Impact in a HUGE way in my life time. The BIG Picture is that it is not about me, and sometimes God will ask me to do the unglamorous things so that others can more effectively do what God has called them to do. The BIG Picture is that I am a part of the Lord's work even if my part is sometimes holding a sticky baby and wiping a dirty bottom in the midst of a round of "red light, green light."
THAT is the BIG Picture..And when I remember it this way, I can't help but become overwhelmed with gratitude that God has allowed me to do exactly what I am doing right now. Actually, it makes even a non-crier like me tear up with gratitude for being allowed to do something as BIG as playing "red light, green light" in the East Lobby on a Sunday afternoon.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

My goal today was to show you the video about Pastor Troy's teaching on marriage this weekend, but since I am a technical nightmare and have spent over an hour attempting to post the u-tube video on my blog with zero success...I give up. Which is the EXACT OPPOSITE of what we want you to do with your marriage. So rather than just quitting, I had Max do his best rendition of Pastor Troy's video about the weekend.

Since he's a little difficult to understand here's what he is saying:

"I'vemissed.com"

"Mommies and Daddies: Marriage is hard; but PLEASE don't miss your marriage."

"Come to Flamingo Road Church Hallandale this weekend."

video

Max doesn't quite do the topic justice; You should go here to see the real video.

Marriage IS hard; and if you are struggling in your marriage or struggling because your marriage has ended, join us at one of our 7 Flamingo Road Church locations this weekend or join us online here.

Monday, April 20, 2009

OPPOSITES ATTRACT :)




Just thought this was too cute to pass up...I love how tough Tito looks with a shaved head and tattooed arms and how sweet Annie looks....And yet they go together so well. :)

trying to get back!

I am frustrated with myself for not keeping up with blogging in the past few weeks. I tell myself that I will persevere in the busy seasons and continue to write down my thoughts, crazy stories of our everyday life, and things the Lord is teaching me; but unfortunately blogging is one of the things that goes pretty quickly during those busy times (right after painting my toenails, plucking my eyebrows, and cooking :)

So in order to ease myself back into this blogging thing, I am posting a few random thoughts that only Chris will care to read:

I got a new camera...Finally, I have the default of the, "I have nothing to say so here are a few pics of the kids for you to see" posts again.

My sister, Kristi, and her husband are coming to visit this week!! I am super excited to see them! I will be sooo bummed if she calls me the morning she is supposed to fly in and tells me she never got on the plane (I won't name the sister who did that to me 2 months ago... but no hard feelings :)

Easter at FRC was amazing...almost 19,000 in attendance, 955 salvations, and 632 baptisms!! We had 1,155 in attendance at our Hallandale campus!! I love being a part of this church, and I am so honored to have a part in what God is doing in my generation.

I have a envy problem with people who have more energy than me...Chris is one of the people I envy. He can go day after day with very little sleep...How do people do that? ( you know, legally and healthily--although, I don't think healthily is a word)? I would love some ideas...

Is there such a thing/job as a time management trainer? You know, we have fitness trainers, life coaches, mentors, but what about someone who looks at what is on your plate daily, evaluates your goals, and says, "Do this first, then you have 15 minutes to fold laundry, and then do this...OK don't get A.D.D on me, you need to do this next" OR, "Come back, come back, quit reading/writing blogs you're supposed to be planning for your meeting tomorrow night!"
I think one could make a great career in this field...maybe not, maybe it's just me...I'm sure more mature people can do this for themselves :) I have the worst A.D.D some days and I think, "If I just had a coach to tell me what I was working on and what's the next most important thing to do."

I think right now he would say, "Finish blogging, start the laundry, and make those 2 phone calls you said you would while the kids are still napping."

Monday, April 6, 2009

the microwave and my nose

I really struggle to keep up with this blogging thing during Christmas and Easter, but I quickly want to tell you about this "aha moment" I had yesterday.

Here it is: You know you need a nose job when you can shut your own nose in an over-the-range microwave ...No seriously...I mean, I would love a nose job, but my lesson learned was maybe it is time to slow down just a tad when you are running through the house like a white tornado on crack so much so that you slam the microwave door shut and forget to move your own head. Yep, it seriously happened. I am talking I had the bloodiest nose EVER...and Chris has never laughed so hard. My nose is still too sore to laugh...Which has got me wondering...Can you feel your nose when you laugh? Or is that just the ultimate sign of someone with a big schnoz?



WOW...my best picture and most insightful post all in one :)