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It’s Time. a.k.a My first installment of “Thankful Thursdays”

There’s so much going on in my life right now. However, I feel like that’s all the more reason for me to start getting some of my thoughts out of my head and put down somewhere. This blog that I’ve had for years and have never updated seems like as good a place as any.

Today is Thursday, April 3. That means last Thursday was March 27, 2014. It was a rough day. For starters, I was at my grandfather’s bedside as he took his last breath. 9:15am. I won’t lie, I cried. At the same time, I knew then and know now that he’s in such a better place. I am so sad that my relationship with him on this earth is over. I’m not at all sad for him. I know he was loved while he was here and that where he is now, he’s more loved than I can imagine. Truthfully, I’m happy for him. 

About five hours after Papa passed I received my first text message asking what was going on with some of my best friends who live out of state. Because I’m not on Facebook, I didn’t realize people had been posting condolences to their walls for the past few hours. Some friends and I quickly began to get an idea of what was going on and it wasn’t good. Their six month old daughter was in a car accident and she didn’t make it through. Six months. Just the opposite of what had happened with my 86 year old grandfather hours before. I celebrated for him. I loved the thought of his full and rich life coming to a peaceful close with his family around him. This sweet little girl didn’t have those same opportunities. Her parents wouldn’t be able to watch her take her first steps, take ballet lessons or play softball, learn to drive, go to Prom, or walk down the aisle to her groom. Her life had seemingly ended before it really began. 

But you don’t know my friends … they lost their daughter that afternoon but her life will not be in vain and her story will touch more lives than I think I can even imagine now. You see, her dad preached the eulogy at her Memorial Service on Sunday afternoon. I’ve had permanent goosebumps on my arms since that sermon. He spoke of missing out on watching his daughter grow up but of the joy he has knowing that she has joined her groom, Christ and that He has the right to call any of us home when He’s ready. He told us (quoting John Piper) that suffering is not meaningless and that his daughter’s death wouldn’t be either. He preached the Gospel and left me with tears of joy for this sweet little girl. He also left me in awe of himself and his bride. Don’t get me wrong, they’ve been two of our closest friends for six or seven years now. I’ve always known that they’re amazing. But this day took it to a whole new level.

I’ve been reading through the Bible using D.A. Carson’s “For the Love of God” Blog via The Gospel Coalition. One of the readings (for Philippians 3) ended with this encouragement … “So follow someone who follows Christ; follow a pilgrim who insists that you live up to what you have already attained, and then press for more.” I’m so thankful that I have these friends in my life. Friends who are real people, they make mistakes, share their struggles, and continue to trust that the Lord is working in them to further His kingdom.

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Pumpkin Carving 2012

Last night my husband and I carved pumpkins for Halloween. It’s his favorite holiday. He loves scary movies, haunted houses, scaring others, candy, pretty much everything about Halloween. However, it’s been years since we carved pumpkins. The last time we did, it was hard and frustrating and we both walked away in less of a festive mood than we began. So I was tentative to mention pumpkin carving this year but it’s been a long time and I thought it might be worth a try. This year we had a weapon we didn’t have last time … iPhones.

He googled pumpkin carving tips while I was out buying the pumpkins and the carving kit. I was excited to find that large pumpkins were only $6 each at Publix and that was $6 for any pumpkin in the box. So, of course, I bought the biggest pumpkins in the box. (I was going to get my money’s worth out of it!) The best tips he found were to (a) make sure that the pumpkin is well cleaned out before you begin carving and (b) take your time. This, too, meant I got my money’s worth because we were at the table for a solid four hours. There was one short break in there when the hubs had to run to the store to buy another pumpkin carving kit because we’d broken both of the saws from the first kit. Again, worth the $4.50.

I picked an easy pattern from hgtv. I know I’m not good at this and it frustrated me last time so I wanted to try something easy that I thought I could do. His was not so easy but it was oh so him. I’m not sure where he found it but he used a pattern for the Ghostbusters logo. The tips he found helped a lot. We took our time, talked, laughed, and gave each other tips. The only tip I would add here is that if you find something like the Ghostbusters logo, make sure to carve the eyes, mouth, and chin first. If you do it last, the pumpkin is kind of loose and you run the risk of it breaking. We found this out the hard way. Luckily, nothing broke, but it was touch and go for awhile.

Here are the finished products:

2012 Mitchell Jack-o-Lanterns

 

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