Not About a Tree

Last night at Steve and Debi’s, we were all talking and having fun – including Rocky and Kourtney and baby Bayleigh Bebb, the Stewarts and Sami! It was pretty special. And loud. So when Steve went to the attic and brought out Gramma Grace’s hand crafted and framed Christmas Trees made of sparkly jewelry and broaches, it caused a bit of a switch in the atmosphere. We all gazed at the four of them in their imperfect glory.

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One actually still worked when the light strand was plugged in. The wooden backings were drilled with holes so that tiny white lights could be pushed through from behind, making it even more special than any other kind of framed Christmas tree made of jewelry. 🙂 I remember these being hung around her and Grampa’s house every Christmas. Gramma Grace was a lovely, creative, funny, sometimes harsh, but most of the time kind and welcoming Gramma. I rarely talk about her, but miss her very much.

So Uncle Steve brought out the decorative trees and displayed them in the living room, giving Charity and I first “dibs” probably due to our childhood memories of them. There were some hurt feelings in the air, because Sami wasn’t considered. It wasn’t really about the trees, as much as it was about her feeling of being overlooked. I understood. She quietly made her way upstairs to her bedroom and I felt the Spirit just as quietly tell me to follow her so I made my way up the dark, narrow stairway and was happy she let me in.

We talked for a while. I was pleasantly surprised how easy it was.  And was kind of concerned that everyone had eaten dinner without us at one point, but not enough to cut the conversation short. I learned many things about my sweet cousin as we dove into some deep subjects like depression, panic attacks, suicidal thoughts and their threats on the Bebb family. Our words waded through the safe but murky waters of spiritual things like supernatural healing, speaking in tongues, and the intrigue of dream interpretation. And we also splashed around in shallow-water topics like our favorite memorized movies of the past (hers was Ironman and I had three: Dead Poet’s Society, Reality Bites and The Notebook) and our fave subject in school (which happened to be English and writing for both of us). Ricky came in and let us know that everyone was in fact, eating, so we better head downstairs if we wanted in. So we wrapped it up, just like that. But I was so thankful for that time we got to spend together.

I texted her on my way home to see if I could go sing at the nursing home she works at, since that’s been on my heart lately. She texted me back at almost 1am with a positive reply.  

I think God is reminding me of the importance of investing in a life, once again. I suddenly want to get to know her more. This new connection is not a coincidence. Life on this earth is too short to not really know or invest in your own family.

Busiest Week of the Year. What a great family I have.

Just an update of my life…

This week, as with all 2nd weeks of June, we celebrate 5 things in 5 days:

June 10: Ricky’s b-day (38)

June 12: Mom’s b-day (61)

Last Day of School (for Angel)

June 14: Our Anniversary (17 yrs)

June 15: Father’s Day

So it’s been a whirlwind! But pretty great. I had to back out of worship practice Wednesday (which means Sunday as well) but did keep my standing Monday night commitment w/my Mending the Soul class. Three weeks left and I’ll have completed the class and be better equipped to help those affected by abuse, neglect or trauma. I’m praying that even though I don’t know what’s around the bend or who God has in store for me to meet and help through healing, He will use this training. He will take  what I’m learning and I’ll be able to understand someone – maybe even lots of people – and take their hand as they journey toward mental, emotional and spiritual healing and health. If not one-on-one, then maybe I’ll use the wisdom to become a facilitator of a related class, myself some day.

Braylon and I have been getting in the Word in the mornings this week too. It’s been pretty cool. 10-15 minutes, we each read. He reads from Proverbs (the chapter of the day) and Ephesians – his book of choice written by Paul. I loved that he chose such an encouraging book. We’re talking about reading until something jumps out at you, writing that thing down, and then we’ll talk about why it seems significant – and today I talked to him about why it’s important to go deeper than just reading to cross it off your list – but read to really understand what God’s saying to you in that moment. Instead of reading and writing it down and moving on, we’re praying a quick request to God beforehand that He’s speak to us and help us understand and apply what we read, we’re then reading, writing and talking about how it might apply…with one example we can think of.  I think this will really pay off. Heck, I know it will! Isaiah 55:11-13 promises! It’s always a battle to start getting in the Word more intentionally and consistently. But once you’re there, you’re like – this is sweet! Why did I ever stop?! God is speaking right to me!  or – that would be perfect for me to send to so-&-so right now!  It’s cause it really is ALIVE and active – full of power and life.

Angel is still so sweet. Every year I keep waiting for her to turn bratty and sour. But NOPE. Not yet. 🙂 She told me yesterday that she wants to be a singer when she gets older and my heart stopped and did a happy dance in my chest for 2 seconds. She’s good at it, too.

I had to re-wash and re-rinse her hair tonight. I thought she, at 7 1/2, would be old enough to wash her hair by herself. But alas, she hopped out without yelling at me to check it first…and she had weird dry scalp flakes (or hair gel pieces) and soapiness still in there! So here we go again. She loves to play outside with her bro who she still at times calls “bwud-ger” and their favorite outdoor activities lately involve the “over the creek” swing their dad made, hanging with the 5 “Buck Boys” down the street  jumping on their trampoline or shooting hoops, riding bikes or rip-sticking.

Sometimes Bray goes exploring in the big backyard, takes his knife and cuts or whittles whatever wooden thing he can get his hands on. When I look for him from the back porch, I usually find him just in time to see his arm flailing as he chucks a rock or a stick as far as he can. Which is SO Braylon. He’s been doing that since he was like 3! He’s really worked on drawing this year and has gotten so dang good at it! I love his determination. His perfectionism is an unfortunate genetic obstacle to artistic greatness. It’s ok though. It’ll hopefully equally help him achieve his artistic goals! He is just like his daddy who used to draw and doodle in high school and then way after that, he realized – wait a minute! I think I GOT somethin’ here! And next thing you know he’s like Creative Director Web Designer and Marketing Consultant for a major corporation. But whatevs ~ Braylon will be fantastic at whatever he does with the Lord’s help and guidance. His openness, compassion & humor light me up…and his dad loves how sensitive, creative and confident he can be.

It’s now after midnight on 6/14 – which means it’s Ricky’s and my 17th anniversary! We’ve been hanging out lookin at our wedding photos and he was kind enough to oblige me and pick out his favorite one of just me, just him and both of us. Today we played ping pong (I beat him again! All three games this time. Hee hee). We listened to the Lionel Richie Pandora Station during dinner (I made us raspberry salad and grilled bacon sandwiches) and  afterward when we found ourselves alone by the ping pong table he made, right after I beat him, we kissed and slow danced for a minute to Journey’s “Open Arms”…despite my garlic bread breath.

I can’t wait to see what later today has in store for us.

Or the rest of our lives.

Gramma Grace ~ a poem on Memories in Honor

Her hugs would envelope my tiny frame
Hydrangeas of purple white blue
Her slanted driveway gave us a game
Makeshift go-cart planks on wheels

Easter service bunny cake-pan
Jellybeans green-hued coconut
Lemon drop dishes, two in each hand
Makeshift roller skate rink in the back

Reader’s Digest, People’s Court
Whopner, dachshunds, motorized chair
Secret passage, hideout, fort
Eyes that sparkle, giggle fest

We were welcome, we were there
Road trips, parks, reunion fun
We were clueless to despair
Until she stole her life from us

1995 in Spring
When Easter boasts of Jesus’ blood
The day after her birthday’d bring
News of her blood, it left her still

We watched her Pastor lift and roll
Heavy carpet, dripping bed
What would become of Gramma’s soul?
Her wounded heart, is it now whole?

There was no stone that rolled away
Her Depression held a permanence
Can suicide be void of blame?
I’ll never point to man, nor self

Two years later, down the isle
Eight and Braylon grew inside
Twelve my Angel flashed her smile
Nineteen now, I miss her still

Why We’re Moving Back to Oregon

First, a little history about why we moved south: In the late summer of ’07, we were in Medford, praying for employment. Ricky had begun his journey into the world of small home business in web design, but his skills were still developing, and Southern Oregon wasn’t the premier spot to gain steady clientele (or a 9-5 job) at the time. So we just prayed for another means of provision… Continue reading

Doesn’t Get Much Better

Let me just take a minute to breathe in the goodess here. I believe God’s up there winkin’ at me. It doesn’t get much better than this ~

…a morning spent playing with a giggly little 2 yr old & cute wiener dog

…a good work out @ the Y, and then

…a quiet lunchtime with a delish salad, a cold glass of lite lemonaid & the Bible

Man, life is grand!

salad

My Salad:
Lettuce (romaine), shredded mozz. cheese, feta cheese, manderine oranges, sliced deli ham, grape tomotoes, crispy turkey-bacon, salt & pepper.

I love salads!!!! For a more protien-packed twist, substitute tuna-mix for the ham & small apple chunks for the oranges, then top w/some craisins. Mmmmmm.