Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Weekly Encouragement

There's a lady named Pam in my dad's Sunday School class at church that sends an e-mail recap of their lesson each week. She summarizes Sunday's lesson in a  few sentences and provides a little take-home message.

Side note: Our church doesn't call it "Sunday School" anymore. It's now called "small groups" or "life groups," but I'm like an 80-year-old living in a 29-year-old's body, so I will say Sunday School.

My mom isn't in my dad's Sunday School class, but she gets the e-mails anyways. Recently, she has been forwarding the e-mails to me. I found them to be very encouraging, so now I also forward them to my friend Mollie.

Are you following all of this?

Pam ---> my dad ---> my mom ---> me ----> my friend Mollie

It's like a whole chain of e-mail encouragement that we have going. A little dose of Godly wisdom for me week.

Side note: "me week" was an unintentional typo, but it made me sound Irish, so I'll keep it.

I had a revelation today on my drive home from work:

Since I usually give Brian a short 2-minute recap of the sermon when I get home from church every Sunday, maybe I could also send that recap in e-mail format to some of my friends who don't get to attend the service each week.

BETTER YET, I'll share it on my blog.

(Link below to the actual sermon. It's way better than my little recap.)

Grey Stone Church Sermon - June 26, 2016

This week's sermon continued the series "Worship Matters." It's easy for us to fall into the trap of worshipping our stuff, instead of worshipping Jesus. What matters most to you? It's usually things we try to protect - our cars, our houses, our looks, etc.

"For where your treasure is, there your heart is also."

Things do not last, and the sad fact is that neither do we. It's not to say we can't enjoy our earthly treasures, but we should be more concerned with investing in our eternal future.

"Store up your treasures in heaven, where rust and moths can't destroy and where thieves cannot come in and steal."

Every time we are faithful
Every time we show compassion
Every time we make sacrifices for the kingdom of God...
...we are laying up treasures in heaven.

The part about making sacrifices resonated most with me (1 Corinthians 15:58). It's been my experience that sacrifices typically go unnoticed and unrecognized. For instance, Cam has never told me how much he appreciates that I wake up to take care of him at 5:30 am every day, INCLUDING WEEKENDS! :)

After the sermon on Sunday, I've spent time this week reflecting on my attitude about making sacrifices. I can get so bitter when I am exhausted, overwhelmed, and feeling under-appreciated. If my sight is set on the Lord and storing up my treasures in heaven, then my work is not in vain.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Life Lately

Well, this has been great week. I took off Thursday and Friday, so I am enjoying a 4-day weekend!

On Wednesday night, my parents kept Cam overnight. Brian and I took advantage of this and went on a date - Mexican food and Finding Dory.

It was a really cute movie! I loved the sea lions, especially.

Sea lions are awesome. :)

The sea lions in Finding Dory reminded us of Otis and Pippa. Mainly Otis. When Otis isn't sleeping, he is known for hoarding his toys on the couch and then standing guard.

On Thursday, I spent the day at the Umstead.

Brian got me a gift card for Christmas, but I wanted to wait until summer to use it so that I could take advantage of their outdoor pool. So glad I waited!

I cannot say enough good things about their spa. It exceeded my expectations by a long shot, and I had high expectations to begin with! My first treatment was a luxury pedicure at 9:30 in the morning, and I had a glass of wine while being pampered.

When you are drinking wine at 9:30 in the morning, you know you are on vacation.

I'm gonna do a little shopping today. Hopefully the sun comes out this weekend so I can get in some good pool time.

Cheers to the weekend. :)

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Basement Renovations - Part 1

When we moved into our house in 2012, I did a few "house tour" blog posts, but I only toured our main level. Our house has a full basement, which we really love. I did write one post in 2014 about our basement upgrades, when Brian built his theater room, but those are the only pictures I've shared.

A couple months ago, we had an underground pipe leak in our basement and we had to have Carolina Restoration Services come to repair it.

They came in like a wrecking ball.

Our basement is basically a blank canvas now, so we decided it would be a good time to make some changes. Brian, per usual, will be in charge of all the interior design and decorating decisions. We are going to add a bathroom, but other than that, I don't think we have too much in the works. This may be a relatively small-scale project. We'll see.

I wanted to show some BEFORE pictures before they start the work next week:

Laundry Room

Quick story: Last year (pre-basement leak), I mentioned to Brian that I wanted to paint the laundry room. He said "why?" and I told him I wanted to get rid of the green splotch that the previous owners had painted on the wall.

Brian's response?...."What green splotch?"

THREE YEARS and he never noticed the green splotch on the wall. Not too sure, but I think it's Y-chromosome related.

 Pool table room:

 Stuff got moved around. That dryer doesn't belong there. :-)

Theater Room:

Carpets and baseboards are gone.

Storage/Multi-purpose Room:

Completely destroyed.

Unfinished basement:

(Above picture) Site of future bathroom

Past House Projects:
Guest Bathroom
Living Room
Master Bedroom
Master Bedroom Update
Living Room Update
Kitchen Remodel Before Pictures
Foyer Update
Kitchen Remodel Week Two

Looking back over these posts, I realize I need to do a more recent house tour. I never even blogged about the completed kitchen remodel. Our house is constantly changing. The work is never done. :)

Thursday, June 16, 2016

A Little Tribute to the Fathers of my Babies

To the fathers of Otis and Pippa: Thank you for passing along your good-looking genes. Otis and Pippa are my heart and soul. I owe you big time.

To the father of Cam: Thank you for passing along your good-looking genes. Cam is my whole world. I owe you big time.

My Favorite Fatherhood Moment So Far
Brian is not the most overly affectionate and loving person, so sweet moments are hard to come by, but there was a moment a couple weeks ago that stood out to me. 

I got out of the shower that night and noticed the baby monitor was missing; it's usually plugged in right next to my side of the bed on the nightstand. Brian and I had been irritated with each other that night and I wasn't in the greatest mood, so I was annoyed that the monitor was missing as I got into bed. When I got back up to go search for the monitor, I walked out of our bedroom to find Brian asleep on the couch. The baby monitor was sitting on his chest, just inches from his face, and he had fallen asleep watching Cam sleeping. 

It may not seem like anything special, but sometimes those are the best kind of moments.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Pool Days

I made it to the pool after work on Friday, which was a great way to start the weekend. I think it will be my new thing on Friday evenings in the summer.

The pool wears us out!

Cam will swim for about an hour (usually I hold him instead of using the float, but I can't get a picture of that). We made it to the pool Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. It was great pool weather this weekend. :)

Even for this morning person, 5:45 AM comes early on a Saturday and Sunday. Cam is an early riser! On Saturday, I took Cam and Pippa on a walk in the morning before it got too hot. I can push the stroller and walk one dog. I don't think I'm gonna master both dogs and the stroller. After my short walk, Cam and I went for a longer walk (45 minutes) and I can't take the dogs with me on my long walks because

On Sunday we went to church, the pool, and then out to dinner with my parents.

Any free time this weekend has been spent reading The Stand.

I am hooked! Definitely the best book I've read in a while, and I'm only 1/4 the way through.

Friday, June 10, 2016

It's Friday Night. I'm Blogging. Things are Getting Wild.

It's been six months since I've blogged. Let's jump right in, shall we?

I just poured myself a glass of wine. It's got some kick. It's Cabernet, which is my go-to red, but this is not your average Cab.

Feels like a grizzly bear is blowing fire in my face. Every sip makes me shiver.

We've been training the dogs not to sleep on the top of the couch because it squishes the cushions.

So that's going.

Not much else has changed.

Cam is getting bigger.

Here he is hanging out in the pool, dropping a sick beat:

Brian is still Brian. There's really no good way to explain it, but this Facebook message he sent me on Wednesday afternoon paints a pretty good picture:

My sister got married. Here's a picture of us at her wedding:

Hey Strawberrys!

(My sister's husband has no online identity. As a couple, they have no online identity. I can't ruin it for them by posting anything. They shall remain nameless.)

My hair got more blonde.

Really, I just wanted to share that picture with you because my hair looked so good. On an average day, it looks nothing like that.

Our basement had water damage and we had to completely gut the whole thing. It's been crazy, but luckily we've taken it in stride, and now we're just waiting for it to be renovated. Our year wouldn't be complete without some major house project.