Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Ridiculous Amount of Rambling

Hello Readers,
How are you? Just thought I'd check in. I feel like doing a little rambling.

Let me begin by telling you that I have 45 unread blogs on my Reader. Man...I'm behind. I'll get to them, though. Anyways, let me tell you about me weekend. It was a good weekend...but...there were some bumps.

Thursday evening we left for Meme and Papa's in Sugar Land.  When we got there, Casey and I considered going on a date, but we were too anxious to watch The Office (WE LOVE THE OFFICE!!!) so we stayed in. Good decision. :) 

Friday morning, my mom and I both went to get a hair cut from Vielka...who was nominated Woman of the Year for 2008. (Go here to see what she fixed!) I didn't really want to cut any length, cause I want to start growing it out, so I just got a transitional haircut. I'm not sure it was the best choice. One side of my head is doing something totally different than the other side of my head. I'm not sure I can take it. I can't decide if I want to have her cut it to my chin again or just tough it out...what do you think? The good news is that my mom's haircut looks great. 

Later that day, Braelyn, mom, my grandma, and I stopped at a few stores to find Braelyn's Halloween costume. Now, I know that it wasn't even October yet, but...last year...I waited till, like a week before Halloween. Colossal mistake! Every Halloween costume in the entire country was out of stock. I was not going to make the same mistake twice! So...Friday we began the search. Braelyn originally said that she wanted to be a cheerleader, which was no problem to find at Party City. However...the problem with Party City is that they have pictures of hundreds of costumes up on the wall and after a little perusing, Braelyn decided that she wanted to be a princess. Well...OF COURSE...THEY'RE OUT OF ALL PRINCESS COSTUMES!!! Of course they are! It's not even October yet! I told Richard (guy who was helping us) that it was all those crazy, psycho moms out there. He agreed, but I'm certain he was discerning enough to know that I am not one those moms. We headed home with no costume.

Saturday morning, Casey and I had a board meeting. All went very well. A lot was accomplished. The plan was to return to my parents house, gather our things and our daughter and head home. Well, Casey was looking awfully tired and Braelyn didn't nap, so we let Casey take a little rest while Braelyn, mom and I went out one last time to find THE costume. Sure enough, my daughter doses off 5 minutes into the 10 minute car ride. I pull into the parking lot where (we mistakenly thought) the costume store was and I hear Braelyn cough...and it sounded like something came up with it. I look back and she starts throwing up...multiple times...all in her car seat. Oh my goodness. Disgusting! I told her when she was a baby that she was forbidden from throwing up in the car. I knew to give her this rule because it happened to a friend and she told me not to let it happen. But there she was...throwing up, all over her car seat. Bless her heart. Needless to say, we turn around and went back to my parents'. We ended up staying the night that night too. I wasn't about to risk letting her throw up in another car seat! (We're borrowing Meme's.) 

Thankfully, she didn't get sick again, and she seemed fine the rest of the night. 
Sunday, we made it home. :::SIGH:::

So that was our weekend.
Oh well, Sunday afternoon I watched the Texan game...sad :(. Darn coin toss. But! After the game, I was quite inspired and I ordered Braelyn's costume online. Can't show ya yet, though. :)

Also, I acquired something over the weekend that I am very excited to show you, but it'll have to wait. I need Casey's help and he's studying. Hopefully tomorrow.

What else?...

Oh..Round Top (Antique Show Heaven)! It's happening! I am going on Friday, but seriously...it's painful to wait! I can't wait to see what everybody finds! Normally, I have a list of what I am looking for, but this year I don't. I kinda want to find one of those giant glass wine jugs...but I have a feeling that if I find one, I won't be able to afford it. We'll see. I'm not dying to buy anything...there's a project that I want to work on in the living room, so I may just save my money for that. It's still going to be fun to look around though.

And one last thing. Casey and I just finished Lost...again...all 4 seaons. Oh my gosh! I love that show. I have some thoughts...well, questions, really...to share as we get ready for the final season. I'll try to share those with you later on this week. 

Ok, well that is all the rambling that I have and I'm sure, all that you can stand. So...I'll say good night.

Good Night.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

With Time Alone...

This evening, with only a few minutes of day light left, Braelyn and I decided to go for a walk. While I was making my way around the trail, I started thinking about a blog I read recently. The author discussed how we, especially parents, don't ever really get time alone. We might get a few minutes here, or an hour there, but rarely do we have a significant chunk of time to just be alone to think or pray or read or whatever.

So I started wondering...What would I do with serious time alone? What if I had 5 whole days, completely to myself? What would I do? What would I try to accomplish?

Well, besides sleeping in, and reading, and blogging, and all those things we dream of doing "if only we had more time," ...I think I would actually try to get ideas together for a children's book. I think of doing this often, but as soon as I let my mind start thinking creatively...there's laundry to do or games to play or dinner to make. I'm not complaining. I love doing those things and I wouldn't trade it for anything, even if it means I never write a book in my life. But, I just find it hard to think fully and completely about other things, whether it be writing a book, or a craft project or planning a surprise for my husband or decorating my home. It just gets a little frustrating sometimes. Anybody with me? (I don't think this feeling is reserved for just moms...I felt the same way when I was working...perhaps even more.)

But that's what I would do, I think. And maybe during my 5 days I would find out that I am not a children's book author...and that's fine, but...I don't know. I need time to figure that out.

So now, I'm curious. What would you do with 5 days (or maybe just 3, or even 1) alone, with no distractions?

Blogger's Whine-arrhea

I...Can't...Blog!!!! (whine, sniff, sniff)

Everyone else is blogging. Oh, yes. I just looked at my Reader...18 Unread blogs! 18!

Is Pleasant Places highlighted on the Reader?
No sir. No it isn't. (Well...I guess, if you're reading this it was technically highlighted, but before it wasn't and it doesn't really count anyways because this is a whine-arrhea post.)


I'm bored with my blog.
I have not a single interesting thought right now.
I miss you people. I miss your comments. But currently...I have nothing commentable.

Tonight, Casey is out speaking, which means after Braelyn goes to bed, I'll have the evening to myself. I will blog. I will force a post, dadgumit!

In my own defense, I have been blogging less, in part, because I realized that I was spending too much time on my blog (and yours), and therefore, neglecting many of my motherly and household duties. As a result, I repented and have been trying to be more intentional with my daughter and home. This is a good change, I think.

BUT! I have also been blogging less because... I have been attending to my motherly and household duties. These are the exciting things that are occupying my brain. And as much as I like to report on diaper changing and finger painting and vacuuming, and cleaning the toilet, I feel like my readers would appreciate it if I kept that to a minimum.

But I will not give up. I will persevere. Even tonight...I will make myself blog about something other than the fact that I am not blogging.

There. Blogging Whine-arrhea complete. (That's whine - a- rrhea. Rhymes with diarrhea...just in case you weren't familiar with that term ;)

Ok, I really have to go...Braelyn has been playing with scissors for the last 5 minutes. She has the scissors to Tucker's ear right now! Oh my goodness! Pardon me, just a moment.

Ahhh...Dog ear amputation averted.

You see...How's a mother suppose to blog, huh?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Men and Air Instruments. WHY?

Women, I have a very important question to ask, about a problem that is effecting marriages across the globe.

How are we supposed to respond when our husbands break out into air instruments? For the life of me, I have no idea. It baffles me every time.

Are they performing for us?

Do they want us to swoon?

Why must they go on for so long? And scrunch up their face and close their eyes?


Why do they do it?!

What do they want from us?!


Silly Braelyn

Braelyn is constantly making me laugh. She is so funny, as I suppose anyone who has only been on the planet for two years is funny. The way she is expressing her understanding of the world is so delightful; I don't want to forget any of it.

Here are some of my favorite Braelyn-isms:

* All animals are silly. Anytime we see a bird (or a squirrel, or a dog, or a goat, whatever), she says, "It's a bird!...silly bird," while shaking her head. Never fails.

* Whenever we go somewhere, she usually wants to take her purse and baby. She picks up her baby so carefully. With a perceptive eye she has been watching adults pick up babies...her voice gets high and soft as she says,"I got you baby, I got you." She hunches over the cradle or stroller or wherever baby may be, and slowly picks her up as if she actually had weight. Sometimes she even grunts. :) (I know she didn't pick that up from me! ;)

* Braelyn has recently decided that she likes coffee. Almost every morning now, when she sees daddy's tell-tell mug, she says, "I wont cowffee." So, daddy gives her a little mug with a lot of milk and a splash of coffee.

* The girl loves shoes! She doesn't really care about how I dress her, but just recently, she has started forming very strong opinions about the shoes she wants to wear. And several times a week I find my entire shoe collection scattered all over the floor. She loves those high heels!

* For the most part, she calls her daddy, Daddy. But, she has observed that when I need Casey for something and he's in another room, I call out, "Case, can you get...?" So...when she needs something, especially when she's in bed, we hear over the monitor, "Case!...I need juice." Or, "Case, rock a minute." And if Case keeps her waiting too long, she busts out with the full blown, "Casey!"...Just like her mama. :)

* If I'm really focused on something abut something or if I've gotten frustrated, she'll ask," You okay, mommy?" I'll say, "Yes, I'm okay." If Casey is there, she'll immediately ask if he's okay, too. So sweet.

* Sometimes, out of nowhere, she'll declare, "I love babies!" Totally random.

* Every morning when she wakes up, she'll come into our room and wake me up by handing me all the items on my side table one at a time. I try to assure her that I don't need (or want) anything (except to still be sleeping), but inevitably, her response is, "Here ya go, mommy," and she hands me my cell phone.

* Every time Casey leaves the house, Braelyn asks him, "Going to camp, daddy? Gonna tell people about Jesus?" Every time. He could be going to the garage and she'd still ask him. I guess she heard that daddy was going to camp a lot this summer.

I know there are more, but that's all I can think of at the moment. I'm gonna try to jot them down on here when they happen. I love looking back on the cute things that she does, and I think it will be fun for her to read when she's older.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Safe and Sound and Crafting

So yesterday, after I blogged, I did run to Wal-mart to get my Ike Apron fabric. I was looking for a heavier fabric with a cute print and also a contrasting fabric for pockets. Unfortunately, there was no fabric that met both criteria, so...no Ike Apron. I did however, get my Ike White Mocha, though. It was delicious.

So for most of the night we just hung out with our evacuees, Peter and Erica.
We hunkered down.
We hunkered down by trying to use the phrase "hunker down" as much as possible.
We hunkered down with pancakes. Chocolate chip pancakes, no less.
We hunkered down with hours upon hours of continuous news coverage.
Erica hunkered down with some homework. Good for her!
Braelyn hunkered down with some singing. :)

And I, did in fact, hunker down with some crafting.

After I put Braelyn to bed, I realized that my Ike craft night was not lost. For my birthday, my sweet friend Jess gave me an embroidery book and starter kit. So, with Ike serenading me in the background, and reporters yelling over the hurricane-force winds in the foreground, I began to learn a new craft.

This is all I got done before we went to bed (at 1am), but I was pretty happy with it and I had a lot of fun.

I finished up the rest this morning. It's a little Christmas tea towel. I'm going add some starry-snowflake things this evening, I think.

Regarding the hurricane, Brenham just got some heavy winds and rains, but nothing that caused any damage (I don't think). We never lost power, or even our satellite signal. We have a couple of broken tree limbs, but that's about all...thankfully.

To all my Houston/Sugar Land friends, I am anxious to hear how you all fared the storm. Hopefully, if you do not have power now, you'll get it back soon.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Ike and I Have Plans

It's 2:00 in the afternoon, everyone in the house is sleeping except me, and I am in the mood to blog. It's so quiet. I love it! If only I had a grande white mocha right now, it would be perfect!

Anyways. So, there's a hurricane. Ike. Even way up here in Brenham there's a little bit of hurricane hysteria going on and we Cease's are proudly on board. Casey sent me to HEB yesterday to get some supplies. I knew it was a mistake to send me, but I didn't want to be difficult. Sure enough, when I returned with our survival supplies, I was sent back. Apparently, a box of granola bars and 2 bags of popped popcorn wasn't sufficient.

But now, after a run to HEB and Wal-mart (and I think Casey went to HEB again)...we are prepared to be isolated from all modern civilization indefinitely.

We won't be completely isolated, however! We're having a little hurricane party. It'll be the 3 of us, of course, and then Erica who lives in our garage apartment and Peter, who used to live in our garage apartment. I'm hoping that the Bever's come over for an Ike Scrabble Tournament, as well.

Yes...Ike and I have big plans. I feel so motivated and energized, for some reason!? It's like real life just stops.

Here's what we have planned:
- Blogging (I am hoping for more than just this post)
- Sewing! I haven't sewn a stitch in months and I am dying to get to work on an apron. (I have been cooking a lot lately and consequently, staining all my clothes!)
- Baking with Braelyn
- Watching a little Lost and a few old movies I recorded on the DVR

Now, if the power goes out, I realize that my plans will be foiled. But, no worries, I have plans for that too. There's always Scrabble and I could very well finish Northanger Abbey this weekend.

Braelyn and I have already gotten a head start on our hurricane activities. Finger Painting! (I saw the paints while I was getting our survival supplies at HEB and thought that those were indeed, necessary for surviving a hurricane.)
Here we are...bracing for the storm.
I think before I officially "hunker down," I'm gonna run to Wal-mart and pick up my apron fabric. And maybe that white mocha. ;)

(On a more serious note: We will keep all our Fort Bend friends and people with farms and livestock in our prayers. Keep safe and dry.)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

A Long Overdue Christ Church Update

A year and a half ago, Christ Church consisted of 7 adults and 3 children. We met in the pastor's cozy, little farm house, we ate meals together, we prayed, we studied and we spent time getting to know one another; most of us were practically strangers, after all.

Six months later, we officially launched Christ Church with maybe one or two added to our numbers. The group seemed so small, the room seemed so big, but the worship was sweet and God was present among us. With so few of us with so much invested, you could literally feel the faith of this Body being tested and stretched. I now look back at that time with great pleasure in my King and His glorious wisdom...In that slow and quiet season, a group of strangers became a family!

Now, as Christ Church is 1 year old (almost), I am delighted to report that the Lord has us in a new season. He is growing us. He is answering our prayers. He is building true community among us. He is providing and giving us a vision for how to steward His blessings. This is our building. We are not in it yet. There is much work to be done, but we are anxiously awaiting the day when we can worship there and serve our community from there.
Some of the things we are dreaming about include:
* Creating a green space. We want to have an area for our kids and the children of the community to play, playground and all. We want to have neighborhood BBQs and other outdoor events such as concerts and movie nights.
* We are planning to open a free parish clinic, staffed by our very own Dr. Hyde!
* We want our building to be a venue for local artists to perform or display their work and of course, for the community to come and experience it.
* We are eager to be able to worship there and have church events there, but we are also eager to utilize our space throughout the entire week. This could mean tutorial services, lectures, book clubs...who knows?...the possibilities are endless.

This is a picture of our Sunday night service a couple of weeks ago. I couldn't resist taking it...the room seemed so full! I was, I am in awe of what God is doing in our church. I'm not sure what the numbers were that week, but this past Sunday we had 43! That's a real-live crowd! The greatest part about the "numbers" is that people are contributing, participating, and getting involved in the business of Church. It's a blessing to see.

This week, we began our home groups again. Last year, we had one large group (10-15) that met at our house every Thursday. This year we have 2 full-size groups. On Tuesdays, Casey and I are leading the college students' small group, and the adult (and family) small group is on Thursdays. We had our first college small group last night...I think it's going to be a fun year. I LOVE college students! I love cooking for them, and I love how they curl up on your couch, and stay over late, and how they help themselves in the kitchen and how they're not afraid to ask hard questions.

It's an exciting time. I think God has much for us to see and learn.
We covet your prayers.