Thursday, May 31, 2012

Thankful Thursday - Promises

Last Sunday EZ and I experienced a special treat after a heavy downpour...a beautiful rainbow! We happened to be walking out of a restaurant at the perfect time, and people were everywhere taking pictures with their phones. I was able to snap this one. It seems to be a rare and amazing sight, and one that is fleeting but fantastic whenever you catch it.

 Rainbows definitely take me back to the promise God made to Noah after the flood, in the book of Genesis: "Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life." 

I am so thankful for the promises of God and find them comforting in a world that often feels topsy-turvy. Here are a few promises you can count on:

You are My child. 
Your times are in My hands. 
My thoughts toward you are precious. 
I will love you with an everlasting love. 
I will bless you. 
I hold you in My hand.
I will not fail you. 
I am your Provider. 
With Me, all things are possible.

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Heavy Hearted

EZ and I are heavy-hearted after the passing of a fellow blogger from the UK, Sean Tiernan. Sean was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma in the late Fall of 2009 and posted often, openly, and honestly about his battle with this cancer. He was in his early forties, fought hard, and was taken suddenly from pneumonia. He will be sorely missed. Though we never met face to face, we prayed for Sean and often spoke back and forth through comments on our blogs. Sean unfortunately had two failed transplants, but remained optimistic about new treatments he could try. He never gave up and would encourage others to do the same. He preferred to look on the bright side of life and had a wonderful sense of humor.

Our deepest sympathy to his wife, Charito, his children, his brothers, and his extended family. May they be comforted in knowing how many were encouraged and helped by Sean through his blog. His brother, Nigel, posted the following:

Some Very Sad News

Hi Everyone this is Sean’s brother Nigel writing this blog entry. This is to inform all of Sean’s friends and blog readers, that Sean passed away suddenly in the early hours of this morning 29th May @ 01:40.

(You may click here to go to Sean's blog, "My Life With Myeloma". His "vlogs" give you a chance to see him talk about his progress and interject a little humor.)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Three Days with the Sams!

Hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend and paused to remember those in our Armed Forces who gave their lives for the freedom we enjoy.

Tara and Jamie attended a conference in Winston Salem last week (Thursday through Saturday), so EZ and I, with the help of Gigi and Nick, got to watch over Samuel and Samantha. We had so much fun! With two sets of twin grandchildren, we are usually trying to divide our attention four ways. It was a treat to give just two of them our undivided attention. I always slept at their house, but during the day we went between their house and of the perks of being next door neighbors. They always seems to be in motion, so the pictures are often blurry, but that's just the way two year olds roll!

At dinnertime, Nick got the seat of between the Sams. An Uncle's got to do what an Uncle's got to do. His face cracks me up!

I just love the mornings when they wake up all happy and take a few minutes to cuddle in Mommy and Daddy's bed!

 Soon they are up and ready for the day, which included a little dip in their pool, lots of playing, and an outing to Chick-Fil-A and PetSmart! Don't you just love their curls?

Our last day together was a Mickey and Minnie kind of a day! Samantha helped me make French Toast for breakfast. 

 After nap time I gave them a special treat...Swiss cake rolls and milk. Who doesn't love chocolate?

The time flew by all too quickly and before we knew it Mommy and Daddy were home. The Sams were very good and we had a great time together. Sure do love these two, and can't wait to do it again!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Love Visits from Family!

Last weekend we had a wonderful time visiting with our niece, Sarah, and her family, who drove over from near Charlotte. It is so sweet to see the little cousins having such a great time with each other as they play, and the adults had a great time too. Here are Natalie, Addyson and Nathan sitting at the island showing us they want ice cream if they finish their dinner. Who doesn't love colored ice cream cones?

 Jaxon, David and Tara

Little Jaxon has to wear a "cranial band" for a few more weeks to help re-shape his head, due to the position he was in during the last weeks of Sarah's pregnancy. He looks like a rough and tumble football player (at 8 months, he weighs as much as Samuel who is two!).

After dinner, we headed outside. Uncle Nick becomes real popular with the kiddos when he volunteers to get his hammock out!

 Cousin Addyson!

Samuel says, "Hey Uncle Nick, what about me?"

 Tara and Sarah

 Gigi and Jaxon (great grandchild #9!)

Gotta love them in Carolina Blue! 

 Jaxon and his Daddy, David

Look what we found in our bluebird house! We are so excited to see these little ones hatch and be cared for by their mommy and daddy.

Gigi is known for her little jar of M&Ms, so here are her 5 little birdies being fed their treats!

Here are a few other special moments...Gigi reading a bedtime bible story, Grandpa reading, and Nick with Jaxon. Hated to see them leave, but always love the memories of special times with family!

Friday, May 18, 2012

EZ's Dad Turns 89!

Late last month Nick and I headed over to Black Mountain to celebrate my dad's 89th birthday. Linda and Gigi were in New York for a wedding, so Nick and I packed up to spend the weekend with my folks.  My dad always has a list of projects for us to assist him with, and this trip was no different. He recently acquired a large water storage tank, built a water pumping system and purchased several professional fire hoses (off ebay) and wanted Nick and I to test out his system. I got the enjoyable task of holding the 'working end' of the hose: 

Dad was worried about having enough pressure to push water through the hose, but as you can see, his pump was shooting a 2" stream of water a good 100 feet!

Linda is always washing her car, so I took the liberty of performing that task with a high power hose:

My dad is a master craftsman in so many areas. Here he is working with Nick doing some welding:

Nick looks larger here than 6'4" and dad smaller than 5'10 in this picture, but they both were enjoying working together on a welding project: 

Mom (Grammy as all the grandkids call her) has a new helper on Friday and Saturday. Valerie comes and assists Grammy with cooking and cleaning a couple days each week.  We are very pleased with Valerie's sweet care for Mom and we are very glad she is willing to help each week.

Mom, Dad, Nick and I took a ride to the top of the mountain where the county is installing a large radio tower for police, fire fighters, and emergency services use. Here Dad is bending some 3/4" rebar.  It is amazing the strength he has at 89!

Whenever we head to the mountain, Dad requests baby back ribs. Here he is enjoying his birthday dinner of ribs, corn and baked potato (we had already finished the shrimp cocktail) that Nick and I whipped up for him and Mom.

A good picture of Mom getting ready to enjoy Dad's birthday dinner:


Linda wanted us to document the dinner, and everything turned out great. The ribs from BJ's were super meaty and three or four ribs was a full portion:

I enjoy walking with my folks and especially with my mom. Walking is so good for both of us, we try to do it everyday when the weather permits.  On this day, it was threatening to rain, but we ventured out anyway and I picked a blossom from a mountain laurel for her.

The weekend went by far to fast (they always do) and we had to take a picture just prior to's a tradition. Here is the shot of PopPop, Grammy, and grandson Nick (and yes, Nick is that tall!). Nick and I are already planning a return trip sometime in June, and hopefully Linda can join us.  Many thanks to Dad and Mom for a great weekend!