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Month: September 2010

The post with no pictures …except for one

The post with no pictures …except for one

I received an invitation to lead a retreat for Trinity Baptist in Katy, TX about a year ago. 

They told me the retreat would be at Camp Allen and that I would be more than welcome to come on Thursday as many of the ladies would be coming in on that day.

I told them “no” and to be honest, it never even crossed my mind to say “yes”.  There were carpools to run, lunches to make, a house to clean, etc.

So Friday night I went to Camp Allen.  And the second I drove into the camp it was as if time slowed down.  It was peaceful and beautiful and relaxing and perfect.

And I asked myself over and over why I didn’t try and make it work to get there a day early.

Rest assured … if someone makes me that offer again … I’m totally taking it.

Jesus set the example of the necessity of getting away and resting.  Often we think we are too busy to stop.  Jesus had 33 years to change the world and yet He still took time to rest.

I had such a good time visiting with the ladies from Trinity.  We played games after the Friday night session and I had the distinction of being the only person to sing my clue during “Catch Phrase”.  I told them they would be the first and last group to hear me sing!!

There were three sessions on Saturday and then I got in the car and found the Arkansas/Alabama game as quickly as I could.  When I got home I picked up Brittany and we headed straight for Pearland, TX for a district qualifying gymnastics meet.  She did well … already enough points to qualify for district although we still have another meet this weekend before district.

We got home late and on Sunday I “got to” teach for the first time in our brand new Sunday School class at Tallowood.  It’s an un-age graded, un-marraige status group and I love it already. 
Also on Sunday a FOR SALE BY OWNER sign went up in our front yard.    We have had four phone calls and zero lookers since then.  You interested?

And if all the information about my weekend wasn’t enough … I’ll tell you my excitement for today.

Bill left his suit coat at home.

Yep.  Flying to Savannah, GA first and then on to New York City (oh how I miss New York!!!).  He wore his suit pants but no coat so I “got to” bring it to him downtown.  He offered me a free lunch in return and that’s all I needed to hear for this home girl to point my Suburban towards the city skyline.

I think he might have started regretting the decision as soon as I pulled away from the curb of his office.  I said … “I hate driving downtown, there are so many people to hit”.  I had no more than said those words than I seriously almost took a man out.  It was terrible.   Soon after I started down a street and looked over and asked … “is this a one way?”.   Bill thought it was hilarious or awful or both that I asked that question AFTER driving on the street for a minute.  Trust me … I’ve driven the wrong way on one ways more than my fair share of times so I needed to double check.

I’m not sure he enjoyed lunch, but I sure did.
And any one of the above things would have been nice to insert a photograph with, but I never had my camera.  
I can however show you Friday’s home improvement project.  We had our kitchen painted … Martha Stewart color … Chocolate Truffle. 


I love it.

The end.

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It’s like a Cornucopia of Candy Corn

It’s like a Cornucopia of Candy Corn

 I hung my fall wreath today!

It feels nothing like fall and my wreath looks like it has seen a few hard years, but it is hanging on my door!

I wanted to add a dish of candy corn to my home … because it’s the right thing to do …. but alas, I bought two bags of Candy Corn weeks ago and well, I ate both of them weeks ago.  Having a readily available dish made things a bit too easy for me to eat them.
But please look at how cute this dish is (minus the skull … I’m not a skull in my candy corn kind of gal, but that’s just me) …



Everywhere I turn there are candy corns.  And you know I love ’em.

For starters, my friend Laura brought me candy corn lip balm the other day.  It was SUCH a fun happy and I have enjoyed smacking my lips together every single time I put it on!  It’s from Avon if you need some for yourself.

Then I saw this cute picture on this blog:


I think something like this would be cute on a table or mantle.  I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am to have a mantle in my new house!  Because it means I will have a fireplace!!  Bill cannot understand my longing for a fireplace seeing how we live in a climate where you use one approximately zero times a year but you never know … this might be a cold winter.  And if it is, you will find me warming up by my fire. 

Another blog featured this CUTE craft:

Craftomaniac gives the “how to” here.  She just used a frame from Wal-mart and made it!  Since I have zero crafting abilities, I won’t be making one of these but please tell me if you do!

And lastly … Jacob went home from school today with a new buddy in his class.  When I pulled up to get him what to my wandering eyes should appear?

Cute little candy corn lights!

They are $8 for a box with 3 candy corn lights at Lowe’s … (you are looking at $24 worth right there) … so I’m not getting those either.  I do need to pick out some new light fixtures but I’m pretty sure those aren’t what Bill has in mind.
I did pick up two little garlands of candy corn at the Great Indoors.  They were cheap and I hung them on my fence between my garage and my house.  Kind of dark in this picture, but you’ll get the idea.


And a cornucopia of candy corn would not be complete without a nod to Halloween 2009 when I went trick or treating with what had to have been THE cutest candy corn I had ever seen!


Now I’m off to look for a new fall wreath … one with a candy corn on it.  Let me know if you see one!

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Don’t sit down.

Don’t sit down.

Last year at family camp I painted a rock that said “Don’t sit down.”
 It’s not fancy … in fact it looks pretty pitiful.

But the message to me is so powerful.

It’s sitting next to my kitchen sink and I always think that when people see it they probably (incorrectly) think I’m trying to motivate myself to keep working or doing or cleaning or cooking.

But that is not it at all.

Each year the camp director asks us to paint our “take away” from the week.  I had been so struck by what our camp pastor, David Daniels taught us from the story of 1 Samuel that I knew I wanted to put it on my rock. 

In that story, Samuel has come to find the new king.  He gathers all of Jesse’s sons together and says … “is this all?”  Basically the dad says … “well, the only one left is David but he’s out watching sheep”.  In other words … “he’s not the one you are looking for … he’s a shepherd for crying out loud.”

But Samuel says (again, my interpretation ..) “hold the phone!  I’m not going to sit down until ALL the sons are here.”  So they stood and waited on David to get there and when he did Samuel said … “that’s him …. that is the new king.”
What he actually says is this:  1 Samuel 16:11
So he (Samuel) asked Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?” “There is still the youngest,” Jesse answered, “but he is tending the sheep.” Samuel said, “Send for him; we will not sit down
until he arrives.”

And the point of Pastor Daniels telling us to “not sit down” was this …. how often do we think we know God’s plan for our children?  Or perhaps we’re so busy trying to implement our plan for our children that we don’t even ask … “God … what purpose do you have for this child?  What have you made him or her to do?” 

WHAT IF WE SIT DOWN TOO SOON??!?!

On Sunday our pastor said that so often people survive something major (heart attack, cancer, etc.) and then say … “I know God saved me for some purpose”.  He then said …. GUESS WHAT?!?  It didn’t take Him saving you from cancer for Him to have a purpose for you.

Jeremiah 29:11 is one of my favorite verses … “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you.  Plans to give you a hope and a future.”

He has a plan.

For each of us.

For each of our children.

Don’t sit down.

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A Light Unto his Path …

A Light Unto his Path …

The last few months Jacob has been asking for his own Bible.  We told him that our church presents all the first graders with a Bible in September and the date could not get here fast enough for him.  Sunday night was THE night and he was VERY excited.

He and Bill practiced shaking hands and the church even put a little sticker on his hand so he’d remember which hand with which to shake.  He told me afterwards … “Mom, I even said thank you”.  So proud of that boy I am.


What I really loved was seeing him come back to the pew and take time looking at each page and picture.  I hope he always has a desire to open God’s word and hide it’s words in his heart.


When he got home he told me “Mom, I love my new Bible and now I have something to read at Family Camp”.  It’s usually a competition to see who gets to read the different scriptures in our family devotional and he is more than ready to join in.
After the Bibles were passed out, we all sang the song “Thy Word” which (if you haven’t been to VBS in a few years), starts … “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path”. I have sung it to Jacob since he was a baby and anytime he requests a song at night, that is the one.  He sings along and we have both admitted to each other that we think we sound pretty good as a duet together.

Jacob … our prayer is that you grow in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.

And you get to read first next summer!

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It’s a wrap ….

It’s a wrap ….

Last week we got a phone call asking if a family could come see our house.

We told them it wasn’t for sale yet but they really wanted to see it so we said …. “sure, come on.”  Problem was, I wasn’t in “let’s sell the house” mode yet.  So I spent virtually every waking second of last week trying to make it look like we don’t really live in our house.  

On Friday we were literally racing against the clock and I told Bill we could have been on some reality game show where we had 24 hours to stage a house.  

They came and stayed all of 20 minutes looking and I spent all of the next 20 hours recovering.

Except that I couldn’t really recover because Savannah wanted to have two friends spend the night and they weren’t as tired as I was at midnight Friday night.  

Saturday morning I went and got them donuts.  In my pajamas.  I drove a little farther to the Shipley’s with a drive thru only to discover when ordering that I didn’t have my wallet or my cell phone. So I drove all the way home and back.  This is the story of my life.
Saturday afternoon we went to Savannah’s soccer game where I watched her score her first goal of the season!  She plays goalie so she doesn’t get to score that often but the coach was letting them play different positions.  I was glad I was there to see it … almost missed it because I was lost.  Driving to a field I’ve been going to for years.  Dementia much?
After the game Savannah told me she was meeting some friends from her team at Jamba Juice.  I asked her who and she said she didn’t know their names but she wanted to go.  I am positive that they didn’t invite her (because they don’t know her really) but she went and sat right in the middle of them and had the best time.  She is a lover of life that child.   And she has never met a stranger. 
Saturday night we went to 59 diner to finally have Savannah’s birthday dinner.  They don’t sing or anything but we did all split a really big milkshake.
 
I loved Sunday afternoon!!  The girls helped me organize my jewelery while I cleaned out a cabinet in the bathroom (you know the one with 3 boxes of bandaids, 4 bottles of childrens tylenol, 2 bags of cotton balls and miscellaneous stuff out the wazoo?  Please tell me you have one of these!).  Caroline helped me with that project too.   It went like this … “MOM, throw it away” … “But I like it” … “THROW IT AWAY” … but what if we need it … We DON’T NEED IT. 
She won most of the battles.  She could have a bright future in organizational consulting.  I was a tough client but she hung firm with me.

I’d show you a picture of my very super clean cabinet except I won’t because I’m too tired to go take a picture.  And I’m sure you don’t care.  
My apologies for what could not be a more boring post.
And it’s not exactly a wrap because there was one more fun event … maybe two of the weekend but you’ll have to wait until tomorrow.
Because, as Dennis Miller would say … “that’s the news and I’m outta here.”


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Always Prepared

Always Prepared

Jacob has been dreaming of today for a long, long time.

His first “official” Cub Scout meeting.

To be honest, I’m not sure who was more excited, Jacob or Bill.

Bill left work early yesterday to trek to the Boy Scout store to buy the uniform and even took it to the dry cleaners to have the patches sewn on.

(I have to take a little literary license here and tell you that the two pictures above were taken about 6 seconds apart … one inside, one outside.  The second I walked outside, the humidity caused the camera to fog up and made the picture blurry.  For those non-Houstonians out there … THIS IS OUR LIFE.  It’s hot here, really hot with no relief showing in the near future.)

And yes … the dry cleaners sewed on the patches because, if the past is any indicator of the future, the fact that there are still baggies of Brownie and Girl Scout patches laying around my house waiting to be sewn on, did not bode well for these to make it onto his uniform any time soon either.

And Bill … being “always prepared” took matters into his own hands and got things done (three fist pumps and a high five for boy scout Bill!).

Which makes me feel badly that Savannah never had a single patch on her Brownie uniform with the exception of the troop number and the Girl Scout symbol. 

The good news is … Savannah joined Girl Scouts this year and all the patches are stick on.  STICK ON!!! 


And moms everywhere have rejoiced and given thanks.

Now to teach those Boy Scouts a thing or two!
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Sweet Savvy Sue

Sweet Savvy Sue

Yesterday this sweet child of mine turned 10 years old.

Double Digits.

The big time.

She is such a joy and a delight in our home.

She is fun and funny and has a good time no matter what she is doing.

She is SO friendly (to anyone).

She isn’t a complainer.

(Which is nice seeing how we have yet to plan a party, didn’t eat anywhere for lunch where you get to wear a silly hat and have people sing to you … or do much of anything celebratory except have Baskin Robbins … we’ll make it up to you Sav!).

She is fiercely independent.

She’ll argue a point until you finely give in just so she’ll stop.

She’s cuddly.

And you know what else? … Just last week she was elected by her classmates to serve on the student council at her school!

She forgot to tell me until late that night.

She cracks me up.

She makes me smile daily.

Savannah … it is your birthday, but you are our gift.

Love you more than you can imagine!

Mom

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It was all very exciting until I ran out of gas.

It was all very exciting until I ran out of gas.

Yesterday Bill sent me an email that said … “wanna new house?”  It felt like I had waited a sweet forever for that email and I squealed and said “YES PLEASE and THANK YOU!”


And I cannot wait to share the story … because it’s a good one and God wrote it … and those are the best kind to share.  


We literally met in an alley to sign the paperwork last night.  We were supposed to be all “up front and out in the open” and sign the papers inside of Starbucks but they were closed for remodeling.  So we signed the largest check we’d ever written in our lives on the top of a car.  

Classy I tell ya.


And soon and very soon the Baergs house will be open for remodeling.  I’ll show you before and after pics and tell you my newest favorite story.  


In the meantime, here’s our house:

We love it!

And I was so excited that I forgot to get gas on the way home (oops!).

More soon!


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Some call it maize. We call it corn.

Some call it maize. We call it corn.

Remember that commercial from a million years ago?!  The one where the Indian woman is talking about nature’s bounty … corn?  I think she was actually selling butter.

Whatever you call it, in Minnesota in August, we call it really, REALLY good corn.

So good in fact, that my husband has been known to eat 10 ears in one sitting.  Maybe more.

Not making it up.

He starts planning his trip to the corn stand before he ever leaves home.  Dreaming about it.

When he arrives, much care and attention is put into picking out JUST the right ears of corn.


(Have I ever mentioned about the time I was opening the tops of the corn at Randall’s – my grocery store?  I pulled down the husk and there was a worm in the top of the ear.  And I screamed.  LOUDLY.  People jumped.  I thought they might call security.  It was hilarious).  

But back to my story, after the corn is selected …


The excitement starts to build …


Young and old expect great things …


And always ..

Always …

It is worth the wait …

It is that good!

The End.

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It wasn’t like we were just sitting around eating cake ….

It wasn’t like we were just sitting around eating cake ….

If you’ve never been to Minnesota in the summer, you really should try to go.

Winter … well, it’s freezing.

Beautiful, but freezing. You really just want to stay inside.  Kind of like Houston in August.

And while we were in Minnesota we tried to make the most of getting to be outdoors.  Bill went up with the kids two days before Caroline and I left (thankyouverymuch UIL sports rules that have the high school volleyball season start August 1).

Before we got there, Bill took the kids on walks through the woods behind his parents house.  They take butterfly nets and try to catch … well butterflies I guess.  I don’t think they have ever actually caught anything though.



 What they did catch was a tree frog.  By the time I arrived it had become a part of the family.  Tragically the tree frog escaped.  Secretly I was glad though because tree frogs need trees, not just sticks stuck in a jar.  Or at least I think so.   

(I did make the mistake of telling the kids I preferred pets with fur … and now they are heavy into negotiations on getting a hamster.  That is really nothing more than a mouse with fur so I’m thinking I could have gotten off easier with the tree frog.  Live and learn.  Live and learn.)

You really never want to go inside so we played croquet:


We played backyard baseball:


And ladder ball (where I may or may not have gotten a li-eet-tle bit competitive):



We shot bow and arrows (it’s a new fave thing for me!):




There was swimming at the cousins’ pool:



Sitting in the grandparents gazebo (where many a game of Yahtzee has been played):

And there was even some sleeping under the stars.  (That is until Bill thought it was raining and moved them into the gazebo – only to find out, come morning, that it was just moisture from the air which got on the moon roof of the tent – which he had left open to see the moon – dripping down on his face.  You have to understand – the man is a city boy.)  I laughed my head off.



The kids had to bundle up for their night in nature:


We had to borrow warm stuff for the most part because when you are packing a suitcase in August in Houston, you really can’t imagine anywhere in America where it would be comfortable to wear a sweatshirt.  ANYWHERE.


We even had a fire:

SO fun.


Bill did make it to a Minnesota Twins game one night with his brother:

And I did make it to the Mall of America … it is, after all, the largest mall in the United States.  We spent so much time enjoying the outdoors that we literally only had one hour to cover the mall.  

The ENTIRE mall.

We split up and Bill and his parents took the younger two so they could ride a roller coaster:

And Caroline, Brittany and I made a lap around one floor of the mall.  We bought a thing or three and made it back to our meeting point right on time.  Impressive if I do say so myself.


We had a good time!  I’m not sure if it was the thought of going to a mall with his sisters or riding a roller coaster that left Jacob feeling sick. 



We packed a lot of fun into a few days.  

I guess you could say we had our cake and ate it too!

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