Sunday, November 23, 2014

Hospital Chaplain: My first Infant Death

On Friday evening I sat in the floor holding a young mother as her 2month old passed away. It was my first infant death as a hospital chaplain. I sat in the floor with the mother clinging tightly to me, and  rocked back and forth with her. As we rocked I whispered in her ear the only prayer I could muster up in that dark moment. "Lord. Lord. Please Lord. Help. Lord. Lord. Please Lord Help."  We said this over and over again between tears.

It is Sunday afternoon and I still haven't processed all of the emotions. Mainly because I haven't had the time. There were other trauma's that night and other families that needed my shoulder to cry on and my prayers for strength. I didn't get to bed until after 4am. All of Saturday was devoted to getting caught up on sleep.

Today at church the song Blessed Be the Name of the Lord by Matt Redman was sung. The lyrics really touched me today.

 Blessed Be Your name
When I'm found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed Be Your name

Every blessing You pour out
I'll turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say

As a hospital chaplain I feel that I have been called by God to walk along side people in their darkest hours. It doesn't get much darker than losing a baby.

When the doctor informed the mother of the death and the mother collapsed into my arms, honostly questioned why MY GOD, creator and sustainer of all, would allow such a thing to happen to such an innocent little life. In that moment I had to make a conscious effort to fall back on my faith.

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

As the family gathered around the tiny lifeless body of their 2 month old baby, I offered a prayer. It was the hardest prayer I have had to pray thus far. Through gritted teeth I thanked God for her precious little life and asked God to surround the family in their time of sorrow.  After the prayer I made the sign of the cross on her itty bitty forehead and said "May you rest in the arms of Christ." The mother refused to leave the hospital until I whispered in her ear that I would take care of her baby. 

To honor my word to the mother, I went back into the trauma room and helped the nurse tuck the precious little baby into the body bag. As I tucked the blankets around the lifeless body of another woman's child, I felt honored to be the hands of Christ.

As I left the hospital early that next morning I couldn't help but have a smile on my face as I said "This is what being a Christian is all about."  Believe me when I say that there is no way I would be able to do this kind of work without the power of Christ. I give Him all the credit. I'm just so amazed that He is able to use little ol' me.

Sunday, September 28, 2014


As a young girl I spent most of my time at my maternal grandparent's house. All my positive memories have the backdrop of the family farm. I still remember the day that PawPaw bought it. It was beyond exciting. For years I had sat in the big tree in MawMaw and PawPaw's front yard overlooking the no longer maintained piece of land. To my little girl self it seemed like a desert, with its rolling hills of dirt. You can imagine my excitement when PawPaw came into the house one evening announcing that the farm had been put up for auction.

I have a vivid memory of tagging along with PawPaw on the day of the auction. He pulled out on the land in his truck, popped open the tail gate for me to sit on, and strategically placed his folding chair that he always carried in the back of his truck with him, right in front of the auctioneer. In his relaxed country PawPaw kind of way, he filled his pipe with Prince Albert tobacco and lit it up. He spent the next how ever long it was, chewing on his pipe and lifting his trucker cap to scratch his head. After a few grunts and head nods the farm was ours.

Being that the 100 acres had sat untouched for God knows how long, the first major task was getting rid of all the groundhogs. Those little critters had taken over. Being the smart old man that he was, Pawpaw opened the farm to anyone interested in making a little extra cash. He offered $50 for every groundhog that was killed and brought to his door step. My uncles wasted no time and immediately got to ground hog hunting.

However, there was one specific groundhog that no one could manage to shoot. He was a sneaky one! Deciding that he would not be outsmarted by a groundhog my Pawpaw called my uncle Travis to bring the backhoe over to dig him out. I, having overheard the conversation, asked to tag along on this crazy little adventure.

I sat in the back of the truck watching pawpaw directing my uncle Travis on the backhoe and my uncle David, who had brought his shot gun over. We had a shooter, a digger, and a director. "Dig right over there Trav. Yep right there. Oh there that damn thing is. Shoot it David., shoot that damn thing. You were too slow, it got away. Dig over there Trav.,right there. I said right there.”

Eventually the ground hog was shot, the hole covered over, and grass planted. It took several years to get the farm up and running. There was a barn to rebuild, brush to clear out, a fence to be put up, and livestock to be bought. I watched it all from the tail gate of PawPaw's truck. On cool fall evenings when I sit on my front porch I am reminded of the man who's blood runs through my veins. He was the first person that I felt truly believed in me and was proud of me, no matter what I did or did not do. What would he think of me now? His first grand-baby is 30 years old, sitting on her front porch, in her bare feet, typing out a story of him, while her barefooted 6 year old daughter eats an apple beside her. Knowing my Pawpaw,I am sure he would be proud. Yes, there once lived a man that made me feel as if I hung the moon.

I have a small paper due tomorrow and it took all the will power in me to start typing on it. I really hate doing ANYTHING school related on a Sunday afternoon.  But alas, yesterday was spent celebrating the birth of our son Paul, so naturally, I put the paper off.

So there I was (like every good story starts) sitting on the couch typing away when I heard a horrid scream coming from Anna. The poor child had put her hand in a bowl of scalding hot soup. How? well, Roger and I are exhausted and didn't feel like doing the whole dinner round up so I made a big pot of vegetable soup and we are feeding the kids as they ask. He had just filled a bowl of hot soup up for Anna and somehow she managed to fall over, putting her hand in the bowl.  SCREAM.

Welp.  There goes the paper writing. I have a poor little girl with a burnt hand.

Roger is currently running to the store to get little kid pain meds. (we had run out apparently.  wonderful timing. I know, we ROCK!) Anna has finally calmed down from screaming bloody murder and I am laughing at the fact that while she was screaming I, feeling helpless, totally asked "would you like for me to pray?"  I blame the chaplain internship. She simply looked at me puzzled and started screaming EVEN LOUDER.

Oh Sunday afternoon. The afternoon in every week that I feel as if I have been hit in the face with a 2x4.

This journey of life that we are on is so strange, but I am beyond thankful that I have someone like Mr Roger Jasper to journey along with me.   

Alrighty then, I guess I best get back to typing out that paper..... and doing the laundry..... and tending to the kids.   Oh Christ have mercy.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Friends that stick with you through thick and thin are rare, but I am blessed to have a few.

late evening walk through the neighborhood

while walking we saw that some neighbors left out trash that WE could make our treasure
Thank you Mary for being the crazy spontaneous, non stop talking, dumpster diving queen that you are. I love you to death.  And thank you for loving Paul and Anna like they are your own.  

May we still act like little kids even at the ripe old age of 90.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Crazy Backyard Neighbor. Do YOU have one?

As a little girl I would daydream about building a house on the family farm. I had a spot all picked out. It was near the back fence-row on the main field, right under the massive tree and beside the trail that leads to the top of the property. I would drive the little stick shift Toyota out to that spot and pretend I was pulling into my drive.

I was never much for inside play, so I mostly daydreamed about the yard that I would have, the wrap around porch, the goats, the children, and yes, the clothes line. I blame my grandmother for that last one. I always loved watching her hang her clothes on the clothes line. I told myself that I would one day have one JUST LIKE HER.

Well, as you already know, I don't live on the family farm, or have a goat, or even a clothes line. I live 2 hrs away from the farm, in another city, right smack dab in the middle of downtown. But you know what? I love it! We have just enough house, and just enough land. We have 2 wonderfully crazy children and beautiful plans. We even have some pretty cool neighbors with wonderfully crazy children and beautiful plans!

However, we do have this one neighbor. Does everyone have that ONE neighbor? You know. The ONE neighbor that is, as 20/20 says, the neighbor from HELL.  Don't answer that. I know you probably don't so don't say that you don't and make me feel even more awful than I already feel. OK!

Anyway, to not go into too much detail, this neighbor's fence backs up to our property and he enjoys climbing over the fence to yell at us about any and everything. Yes, you read that correct. The man puts a ladder on his side of the fence, then a ladder on our side of the fence, and climbs over the fence to stand in our faces to YELL at us.  You see, the way the town in laid out, there are alley ways that run behind the houses. It was an alley that was used a LONG LONG LONG time ago. Now it is just grass and LOOKS just like it is our yard, especially with his fence up. So even though it looks like he has climbed the fence and is standing in our yard, he is actually standing on city property. Out yard starts 10 feet from his fence.

The problem? The man is OCD. And I do mean that FOR REAL. He has some mental health issues, I just know it. Yes, this is the man that climbed over the fence and cut down the 2 evergreens that were "in city property" and started yelling at us when we said "well, then let the city cut them down."  Have you all watched the Crazy Ruhbarb lady video?  Here it is if you haven't.

The man yells at us like this. But we don;t provoke him like these people do. Roger and I flip into our pastor/chaplain mode and start counseling the guy, trying to get him to calm down.

But last night got WAY OUT OF HAND. The man would NOT calm down and at one point said, "you know what I ought to do? I ought to go in my house and get my gun." That is when I picked up the phone and called for back up. I guess maybe I should have called 911, I don't know, but I called a lawyer friend.I wanted a witness, a legal witness, and I really didn't know what the police would be able to do, the man was standing on "city property".

Today Roger and I are going fence shopping. We sat up last night looking at options and prices, and the deed to our property. I want a fence. The man is crazy. CRAZY. He sits outside looking through the fence, listening to the kids and I, watching us. And when he finds something to get pissed about, like me having trimmed a tree and left the tree trimmings on the "city property" because I had to leave to take my child to gymnastics, and had planned on getting to the limbs later in the week, he will climb over the fence and threaten violence on my family while throwing limbs at us. 

So yes, I am done.  And yes, we will take out a loan to get a fence.  And yes, the next time this happens Roger and I have already promised each other that we will walk in the house and call the police. No more trying to talk to the man. He clearly IS insane, needs mental health help, and is a danger to us. 

It is just so sad that this is happening.  Last night I had a crying fit until about 1am. "Why me God? Why us?" YEs, I had one of those kinds of fits. Yes, pastors and their spouses have THOSE kinds of fits too.  I've just been through a LOT emotionally these past 2 years. I really still haven't gotten over the family tragedy and the after affects of it that are rippling through so many, I'm getting ready to start an emotionally rough internship, and the kids are, well, kids, and emotionally and physically exhausting.

As I was sitting on the front porch typing this blog, one of our neighbors walked by. An elderly couple out for a morning stroll. The old man yelled out "well there's our friend, still sitting on the front porch! The only thing that would make that better is if you had a Highball to drink. But I guess it's too early for that. Maybe a martini or a rum and coke!"    You see, that is what I LOVE about living downtown. I love people, and I love the random encounters that you have when you live downtown and sit on your front porch.   I have to remind myself of that when I have a crazy backyard neighbor who likes to scale the fence, throw Fbombs at us, and threaten to get his gun. 

The good thing is that we do live within walking distance of the police department!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Chauvanistic Redneck Men

 I was just thinking the other day how aweful country music has gotten. I mean, I have always had a heart for country music, but lately it is just WAY to rappy and WAY to sexist.  I find myself looking up the oldies like The Judds, George Strait, Randy Travis, Johnny Cash, and Loretta Lynn.  I am madly in love with my Lorette Lynn station on

Anyway, I have recently fallen in love with Kasey Musgraves and often while cleaning the house blast her Pandora Station.  This afternoon ,while scrubbing the toilet, this song came on by Maddie and Tae. Although I am not that into the music part of the song, the lyrics stopped me in my tracks.  What wonderfully funny lyrics!   Hilarious!

There's nothing that I can't stand more than a chauvinistic redneck man song. 
You go girls! 

A Girl in a Country Song

 Well I wish I had some shoes on my two bare feet
And it's gettin' kinda cold in these painted on cut off jeans
I hate the way this bikini top chafes
Do I really have to wear it all day? (Yeah baby)

I hear you over there on your tailgate whistlin' [*whistle*]
Sayin', "Hey girl"
But you know I ain't listenin'
Cause I got a name
And to you it ain't "pretty little thing", "honey" or "baby"
Yeah it's drivin' me red-red-red-red-red-red-red neck crazy

Bein' the girl in a country song
How in the world did it go so wrong?
Like all we're good for
Is looking good for you and your friends on the weekend
Nothing more
We used to get a little respect
Now we're lucky if we even get
To climb up in your truck, keep my mouth shut and ride along
And be the girl in a country song

Well shakin' my moneymaker ain’t ever made me a dime
And there ain't no sugar for you in this shaker of mine
Tell me one more time, "you gotta get you some of that"
Sure I'll slide on over, but you’re gonna get slapped (Hah!)
These days it ain't easy being that

Girl in a country song
How in the world did it go so wrong?
Like all we're good for
Is looking good for you and your friends on the weekend
Nothing more
We used to get a little respect
Now we're lucky if we even get
To climb up in your truck, keep my mouth shut and ride along
And be the girl in a country song (Yeah, yeah baby)

Aww no, Conway and George Strait
Never did it this way
Back in the old days
Aww y'all, we ain't a cliché
That ain't no way
To treat a lady

Like a girl in a country song
How in the world did it go so wrong?
Like all we're good for
Is looking good for you and your friends on the weekend
Nothing more
We used to get a little respect
Now we're lucky if we even get
To climb up in your truck, keep my mouth shut and ride along
Down some old dirt road we don't even wanna be on
And be the girl in a country song

("Yeah baby, I ain't your tan legged Juliet. Can I put on some real clothes now?")

Aww, no

Monday, June 30, 2014

The past 3 weeks have been crazy and exciting. That's pretty much how our life goes. Roger and I have been married for 10 years now and each year consists of crazy AND exciting. This year  is no different.

Saturday we got back from a week long conference. We took the kids with us this time (that's a first) because Roger's mother, Scarlette, was being commissioned as a missionary for the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. We wanted the kids to be part of the celebration. With Roger being in a program called the CBF Fellows, me being a CBF Leadership Scholar, and my mother in law being a new field personal, we were all crazy busy at this General Assembly. The only free time was forced between the hours of midnight and 3am. I am EXHAUSTED and detoxing from life lived out of a suitcase. On a side note, the kids did REALLY well at the conference. Paul and Anna tagged around with us through the meetings and were traded off between family members whenever one of us was free. I am beyond proud of those two!

Before we headed out to General Assembly we celebrated the wedding of a dear friend and while at General Assembly heard news of a terrible car crash that took the life of a friend's 19yr old niece. Just this morning we got word that the brother of the young girl who passed away was in a terrible ATV accident and is in a bad way at the University hospital.

Also, I woke up this morning to a man on our roof. Turns out the roofer decided to come today. So, I guess we are getting a new roof this week. We wrote a check, a BIG check. I thought I was going to pass out.

In all of this my emotions have been all over the place. Such is life. You take the bad with the good and try your best to focus mostly on the good.  At any second things can change drastically. I find comfort in soaking in the simple mundane tasks of life and feeling that sense of thankfulness that I have children to make dinner for, a husband to comfort, friends to pray for, a house to clean, clothes to wash, and a yard to tend to.  If I don't look at life through an eye of gratitude, life becomes too overwhelming.

While at General Assembly I picked up this book:
Laura Barclay is a sweet person that we first ran into at an out of town conference several years ago. When I first met her I was infected by her smile, you can't help but smile when she is in the room with you because she is just so bubbly and kind and funny and wonderfully down to earth. Since then she has become a family friend and I look forward to many dinner dates with her and her husband.  (she has, thank the Lord, moved to the town right beside ours)

This book made it into my hands at just the right time.  In the world wind that we are currently in, it has been a blessing to have this book to escape to the front porch with. Her stories resonate with me, through her words I can hear and see her smile. Every time I pick the book up to read I feel as if I am getting my own personal therapy session with the one and only Laura A. Barclay. "All of us struggle with a desire to belong, and the only thing that can soothe it is to love one another in community. This means not hiding our struggles but sharing the burden so that it is easier to bear." (pg 40)

Tuesday, June 17, 2014


It has been hard for me to slow down. A million things fill my brain and I find myself restless. Summer is always a busy time for us, lots of traveling and church work. But there are times that we find ourselves in the peace and quite of home with one another, and those moments usually give me the rest that I need to continue on in our busy schedule of parenthood and ministry. However, I have been having trouble turning off on those days of leisure. The tension inside of me has been unbearable. I've taken to running more often, but even that has not seemed to work the magic that it usually does.

This past Sunday i was so frazzled, having struggled to get the kids and myself up and ready for church knowing that I was to be the deacon stand in, that I almost ran over a man. As I was backing out of my driveway, the kids screaming in the back seat, a man ran by the car and smashed onto the windshield. I stopped, in shock, but he continued on his lovely Sunday morning run as if nothing had happened.  To the kids: "this is why you both need to be quiet while I am driving. I ALMOST KILLED A MAN."

Summer with the kids is fun, extremely fun, but oh so exhausting. At 6 and almost 9 these two have an insane amount of energy.
our redneck wonderland
Roger and I do our best to keep the kids outside and active during the summer months.

We realize these are the golden years of parenthood . . . or something like that . .  and we are doing our best to suck the goodness out of everyday.

These kids, they are too smart for their own good and Anna, let me tell you about Anna, that child has a wicked good sense of humor.  That girl is HILARIOUS. And Paul, well, that child thinks WAY TOO MUCH for a 3rd grader. The child refuses to go in the kid section of the library. He insists that he choose something from the history section.  And can you believe that he actually READS the books all the way through AND remembers everything that he has read?  Yep, he gets that from his father, not his mother.

Last night I met some lovely women for prayer. For about a month now a few women from the church have been gathering together on Monday evening to pray. It is a time for us women to get together to share the joys and burdens of our day to day lives and to pray. No bible study. Just time spent together in prayer. Last night I went even though I felt dry and numb. It has been hard for me to pick up scripture or to even pray. I'm pretty sure that is where my restlessness in coming from. It's my inability to spend some much needed time with the one who made me from mud.

After prayer and conversation I headed back home with a beautiful sunset to gaze at. It was stunning... and peaceful . . . and all together heavenly.

That drive home was a worship experience. A worship experience that my soul has been longing for. The honeysuckles, the cows, the corn, the horses, the country road, and the lovely breeze. It  was all a reset button on life that I so desperately needed.

This morning the scripture reading in my devotional was Revelation 21: 14-27. Yes, I was finally able to read scripture. I read those verses with awe, remembering the simple pleasure  I had the night before on that long curvy country road. When speaking of his vision of heaven the author of revelation writes. "The city had no need of the sun or the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light"

The beautiful setting sun that forced me stop my car to enjoy its splendor, is nothing compared to what the author of Revelation saw when he was given a glimpse of heaven.  The thought of that has humbled me and inspired me and given me peace today. 

When I am overwhelmed with internal tension I must remember that I need God and that most often I reconnect with Him/Her on long stretches of country roads.


Monday, June 9, 2014

Head Lice

Last night Roger and I were sitting on the couch after a long but fulfilling day, it was about 10:30pm, we had just finished binge watching a comedy show and were on the verge of heading to bed.  Anna emerged from her room scratching her head and talking nonsense. I gave a little giggle, "she must be sleep walking," and carried her back to bed. About 5 minutes later she walked through the living room scratching her head with both hands and headed towards the bathroom. That's when my heart dropped. "Oh my gosh Roger, I think she might have head lice."

What you need to know about me is that I always jump to the worst possible scenario. I figure if I jump to the worst I will be prepared. For example, if someone comes knocking on our door at 11pm at night, unexpected, when I open the door I ask "who died."  I guess it comes with being a pastors wife, it seems as if any unexpected phone call or house visit consists of a complaint or some tragic life/death thing. It comes with the territory I guess.

So, back to the head lice. Roger rolled his eyes at me, told me to calm down, and got a good laugh out of my insisting that Anna was in fact infested with head lice.

On her way back from the bathroom to her room I tackled her and began searching through her hair like a momma monkey.


I threw Anna in the bath and began washing her hair and yelling to Roger for help.

Convinced that I was a complete lunatic, Roger calmly walked into the bathroom rolling his eyes and doing his whole pastoral care thing that he does with crazy hysterical irrational people. Being one of THOSE people, he brought out his handy dandy smart phones and googled head lice. Yep, it was head lice.  Roger started flipping out and yelling "call my mom.  AAAHHHHH" 

As I attempted to get Roger's mom on the phone he headed to the store to get a lice treatment kit. After several calls in which the answering machine picked up I switched my plan and started calling my mom. My brother answered the phone, "she's asleep. Is this an emergency?"   "YESSSSSS!"    Mom came to the phone. "Listen mom, no one is dead, but anna has head lice. WHAT DO I DO?"  My breathing became shallow as she described all the tasks that one must undertake to rid the house of the dreaded head lice. It was at this point that I began to hate all the people who have parents that live close, ours live 2hrs away.  Aren't the grandparents suppose to come over and help with this kind of stuff?  

When Roger got home we had a brief team meeting. "ok, we can do this. lets do this." We sat for over an hour on the floor in front of the tv plucking lice out of Anna's hair with the lice brush. We washed bed clothes and clothes, we vacuumed everything, we bagged up stuff we couldn't wash and took it out, and we ate cupcakes. Because that's what you do when life gets nutts, you eat cupcakes and 3am."hey Rog, you know those God hates fags people? We should call them and let them know that God doesn't hate fags, he hates us."

So far today Anna seems to be lice free. It says on the box to keep checking her and to possibly do the treatment over again in a week. "Please Lord let them be gone forever."

I have no clue where she got lice, but I do know it is a pretty common thing for kids to get. I was just hoping we would be lucky enough to never have to got through what we went through last night.

 Naturally I dreamed of lice all night and checked Anna's hair first thing this morning. No Lice!

Parenthood, right when I think I got this gig down pat I'm kicked in the ass.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014


You all, it is OFFICIALLY summer break!
The view of our back yard through the windows of the master bedroom.

The kids had their last day of school today.
photo before heading to school for their last day

Anna is now a 1st grader and Paul is now a 3rd grader.
 That. IS. Crazy.

Anna's kindergarten graduation.

 Here's a video of the kindergarten class singing the fight song at the end of their graduation ceremony. Yes, they indoctrinate them with Panther pride even at a young age. But you must admit it is pretty cute, especially that little guy in the front with the bow tie and glasses. Oh my gosh he was cracking me up the entire time. 
Paul's 2nd grade awards ceremony.
Paul with his 2nd grade teacher Mrs. Watts.

Where has time gone?
Paul's 1st day of preschool

Anna's first day of preschool

Oh these kids, they crack me up and drive me crazy.  Summer should be a BLAST. . .  and utterly exhausting. These kids, they talk NONSTOP and have an insane amount of energy. I swear I get plenty of sleep and pop a multivitamin everyday, but I still can not manage to keep up with them.

Oh boy.

Happy summer break you all!!!


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Pacemaker Checkup

Today was my office visit with Dr. Christopher Johnsrude. 

He's the doc that is in charge of my pacemaker.

You see, I actually have 2 cardiologists.

Dr. Keller focuses on the actual functioning and structure of my heart.
the doc and I in March 2014

 Dr. Johnsrude tends to the electrical system that has been added to help my heart function.

I know!  Technology is so cool.

 Every 3 months I am seeing 1 of the 2 cardiologists.

Today was the day to get the old pacemaker checked.

The pacemaker likes to act up every now and again so Dr. Johnsrude and his team have had a good ol' time managing this hunk of medal that has been strategically placed in the left side of my chest.

The drive up to Louisville this morning was lovely. 
When I was a wee little girl the drive to see the cardiologist was a whole day affair. At that time we lived 3hrs away from my pacemaker specialist and 2 hrs away from the heart function specialist. 

But since then I have married and moved closer, by the act of God, to both of my cardiologists.  Going in for checkups every 3 months isn't that big of an adventure anymore. 

And, on top of that, if I ever need to go to the ER I simply drive up to the hospital that already has all my information. 

 It's pretty perfect!!   

They know me, my docs, my medical history, and I am sent on back in a flash.

Today was my first checkup since making it to the milestone of  30years old.

I AM 30!!!!!!!!

Saying that out loud puts a smile on my face every time.

I have been so bubbly lately that I'm even pissing myself off.

You know those people that are just happy all the time and joyful in every situation, to the point of absolute annoyance?   


I have been like that this past month.

I want to skip everywhere I go and show off my coffee stained 30 year old teeth by smiling until my face hurts.

Today's visit was celebratory. This lovely team of people have helped me to see 30.

my pacemaker tech holding up 30, me, my pacemaker doc, and my cardio nurse

They, along with Dr. Bradley Keller, have helped me to birth 2 children and to have the energy to thoroughly enjoy those 2 children.

age 6 and 8

The song Girls Chase Boys by Ingrid Michaelson has me dancing around lately.
I love specific lyrics throughout the song that I have made to be my little 30yr old anthem.
Here are the lyrics that I have plucked from it to give the song a whole new meaning for me.

"All the broken hearts in the world still beat
Let's not make it harder than it has to be"

" I'm a little let down but I'm not dead
There's a little bit more that has to be said"

" I got two hands, one beating heart
And I'll be alright
I'm gonna be alright
Yeah I got two hands, one beating heart
And I'll be alright
I'm gonna be alright"

Here is a link to the song if you would like to take a listen.  But you have to promise to dance if you click on it.

In regards to the pacemaker checkup, all seems to be well and I am set back to see the team again in 6 months.

(click here if you are interested in knowing a bit about my heart condition and the reconstructive procedure I had at 3months of age)

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Tuesday's History Lesson with Brenda

Oh you all, my summer break is here!

Yesterday I emailed in my last term paper.

Good God Almighty, it took me forever to get up the will power to type that thing out. I just did NOT want to sit down to type out any kind of paper. I had gotten to the point of no return that takes place at the end of the semester.

I was burned out.


As soon as I emailed my paper to the professor I headed to lunch with the lovely Brenda, her gran-daughter Jillian , and my 2 children. 

 We were on a mission to explore an old farm in Glendale so we opted for the Whistle Stop for lunch. Over lunch Brenda shared stories of her time growing up in such an adorable Kentucky town.

Nope, I'm not going to tell you her stories.  You'll have to get them straight from the source.  That's the fun part of the stories, that they're from Brenda.  That woman needs to be on Broadway.

The farm we explored is owned by relatives of Brenda's so we weren't EXACTLY trespassing.

The house pre-dates the Civil War and has been passed on through the family for generations.

The kids and I followed Brenda around the old homestead as she introduced us to her relatives through the stories passed down from generation to generation. Oh, and to the actual relative that stopped by on the four-wheeler to see who in the world was poking around his old farm house.

Jilly and Anna were more interested in chasing each other than listening to history. But Paul, now that child LOVED listening to Brenda's wild stories of Generals and Indians . . . and ghost dogs.

The house is incredible!


Family members are currently in the process of restoring it, which I think is fantastic . . . and a LOT of work.

Paul said his favorite part was the 30 foot hand dug, stone lined, well. There's no doubt this was dug by the slaves that lived on the plantation.
Brenda said there used to be a gazebo around the well that the family members would spend their Sunday afternoons around. "They'd just sit here sipping cold water from the well, talking the Sunday away."

Yesterday was beautiful! 

 I am in love with this bluegrass state

Monday, May 19, 2014

Oh Dear God will this semester EVER end?

Oh Dear God will this semester EVER end?

I am currently taking a break from typing my last term project.

It is excruciating.

I, no kidding, broke down into tears this morning and started throwing the F-bomb around because I am THAT done with grad school.

I need a break. 

Well, technically I DID have a break.

Roger and I got back from our week in Manhattan this past friday.

It was wonderfully enchanting


We were there to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary.

And boy did we celebrate!

Most of the days were spent meandering around the city taking in the energy, meeting people and taking the time to hear their stories, and eating at random spots that appealed to us at the time.

We stayed at a house on 19th Street in the Gramercy Park Area that is owned by Mennonite Missionaries. The house includes office space for the missionaries and living quarters for the missionaries, as well has rooms that can be rented out to guests visiting New York City. We shared the kitchen, bathroom, and living room with the missionaries and the other 2 guests, but had a private room. 

reading in the living room

Knowing that we were going to New York City in May, for Christmas Roger bought me tickets to see Wicked on Broadway . . .  ON BROADWAY!!!

Yep.  It was AMAZING!!!!

But alas, we are back to the real world of laundry, yard work, child rearing, and oh for crying out loud, PAPER WRITING.

I do not want to do it.

It is due today.

I have put off doing it until the last possible moment because I am sooooooo insanely burnt out. My brain can NOT take any more learning. . .  or thinking.   

I want to read something stupid.  I want to have a mindless conversation with someone.  I want to sit on the back porch drinking too much wine, laughing at the hilarity of these crazy squirrels that have taken over our back yard. 

I want to do ANYTHING besides this term paper.

A part of be just wants to email the professor and be like "sorry dude, I'm not doing it. Give me whatever grade. I don't care."

But alas, I shall go back to writing this term paper because my husband is on my case about it.

Monday, February 24, 2014

An entire post about my lack of brain power

I figure one day I will start writing seriously, after all, I have been encouraged by numerous people to take this writing thing seriously, but for now, . . .  what ev. 

This blog space is just that, a space.

It is my little closet that I open up every now and again to let people into the inner workings of my brain. 

To prove that there really is something going on in the brain?  possibly.

I have lots of internal dialogue going on up in this here head. LOTS.  Our Sunday School class got a small glimpse of it yesterday when i unknowingly started talking to myself out loud.Seiously, no kidding, I walked across the room to get something and started verbalizing what I was thinking in my head. But maybe that's not THAT strange because as I type this one of my professors is walking past the window talking to himself. Maybe it means I'm SMART!

However, the other day I ended up in my driveway having no recollection of how I got there. It was like I had been magically transported to my house from the fitness center. Scary, I know!

Yesterday was the 1yr anniversary of the family tragedy (look back at the post from Feb 2013). I attribute the above behavior to my internal stress over that upcoming date. Now that the day has come and has passed a sense of relief surrounds me. I had been dreading that day for some time. When a crisis of that magnitude rocks a family the after effects are felt for many generations. I guess I am nervous about the after effects, the ripples in the family system, that will be present from years to come. It's almost as if I am trying to stop the waves even though I know there is no controlling how each of us is effected by this crisis.

I can, however, be conscious of how I handle this situation with our children. Paul and Anna are old enough that this crisis has left a mark on them. They will grow up with that tragic story as a part of their own personal story. They remember that day. They remember seeing kyle and kody in the coffins. They remember me sitting them down to explain what happened. How I conduct myself, how those family members whom they look to for guidance conduct themselves, will have a lasting effect on how they will handle grief in years to home. That is scarey for me to think about. I have these 2 little people that are being formed as human beings in the midst of all of this.

Tomorrow I have my first meeting with my therapist.  I really feel that I need someone outside of the family, who is a trained professional, to help me process some stuff. I can't express to you how excited I am to meet with her tomorrow. BEYOND GIDDY!   

Now, back to the topic I started with, the lack of seriousness in my writing at this point in my career. Sorry about that.  It just takes too much brain power to write anything serious and I need to use that brain power to write grad school papers.   It's just the fact of life right now. I live and breathe Seminary in between the whole living and breathing raising children and keeping a marriage.  I have conversations with myself via a blog post because it takes too much brain power to have a conversation w/ humans, or  to do school work between classes after I have already been at it for 12hrs and STILL have 5 more hrs until I am back home in Etown.   

And sorry if there are any typos, or bizarre sentences, or if this post makes no sense at all, refer back to that first sentence I typed.   Brain power, editing takes too much brain power. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

I caught a potato on fire

As you know, when the semester starts this space turns into a venting box. It is my bag in which to breathe so I don't pass out.

I am overwhelmed.    At the moment I am VERY overwhelmed.

Roger works late tonight, the kids are in a CRAZY mood, and I just caught the microwave on fire.  BIG TIME fire.  In like, smoke everywhere and flames visible.

I caught a potato on fire.  Yes, HOT potato.  VERY hot potato.

The kids have homework out the wazoo and I am trying very hard to be patient with them. Thus far they have been very adamant about NOT doing it.  I'm tired. I've been working on my own homework ALL DAY.

Riddle me this batman, where does all this energy that the kids have come from?    I asked them if they had recess today and both children told me that they did not.  What is up with that?   The 2nd grader said his teacher told him that they had too much work to take a recess.  WHAT????    I keep having issues with this teacher not giving the 2nd graders a recess.

I digress.

Both of these kids feel the need to be in constant motion and either singing or yelling.  Who knew it could be so fun to jump from couch to couch singing strange songs that you make up?   I tried it the other night, just for the hell of it.  The kids got really quiet and asked if I was ok. yes, I said, I was ok, just wanted to show them what I have to deal with on a daily biases.  They just laughed and proceeded to jump from couch to couch.   I gave up.

Do not take this post in the wrong way.  I love being a mother, a student, a wife of a man who stays late at work to council those in need, I'm just tired and need to vent, publicly for some reason. 

Now, excuse me, the 8yr old is chasing the dog around the house with a dirty sock.  

Did I mention that the 5yr old is mad at me because she has yet to be called for a casting call?  you can't make this stuff up.  The child is determined that she WILL be in a movie. She can't figure out why her mother hasn't gotten her in a movie yet.

Oh dear lord, the 5yr old just smacked the 8yr old with fake flowers and the dog just ran by carting the dirty sock in his mouth. I guess I need to get back to parenting.  This has been a nice break!