RIP Sugar Boyd

The bedroom seems painfully quiet. We miss her snoring…her breathing…even her pooting.

Around Christmas 2008, it was the first time we saw her in our neighbor’s yard. Roaming free around the neighborhood and scared to come close to anyone, she kept her distance from him. Duck built her a dog house…not just any dog house…one with double walls, insulation and a light to keep warm.

Sugar2009

He’d watch out of the window to see if she went in. He lured her in with food, water and a bed. She stayed safe and warm during the snows that winter, and she found a place in our hearts.

I went to talk to my neighbor one afternoon — hoping she would say “take Sugar” but that didn’t happen. Sugar had found a place in her heart as well, even if she couldn’t keep her inside. “We love her too, so if you ever need any help with her, please just let us know.”

The knock on the door came a few months later. Another neighbor had threatened to call Animal Services because Sugar was running loose. In March 2009, she became an inside dog :)

Over the last 4.5 years we’ve had her, she trained us well. She would sit on the back deck and bark once — a special bark — and Duck would go running to let her in. She would follow us around when she knew we had food, knowing we couldn’t resist her big brown eyes. She’d even jump up and catch a chicken nugget in mid-air. You’d have to be careful wearing shorts around her too because she loved to give kisses. Anywhere she saw bare skin got a lick. She would sleep next to the front door to be sure she didn’t miss us when we came home.

SugarFletcher

I never once saw her get angry or mean or growl. Not even when the cat would come in and paw at her face, or when Fletcher tried to hump her head :)

She had the spirit of a lap dog in a big girl body. She was the sweetest, most loyal dog. We will miss you Sugar!

Sugar

2 Milestones Within 24 Hours

Yesterday my yard was invaded by pink flamingos…

me40mingos

40th Birthday Pink Flamingos

Also, my wonderful Mother posted pictures on Facebook…

Me

Wasn’t I cute? Ha!

So I turn 40 yesterday and then today I put my baby (ok she’s 13 now) on a bus to go on her first school field trip without me — a multiple-overnight field trip.

Two milestones within 24 hours. Prayers for Duck are needed in case I lose it! :)

God is just showing off now.

Yesterday Doodle and I went to a store. Before we made it inside, we were approached by a lady asking for money. I normally don’t give money to people who ask like that, but I thought I had a few dollars and could spare that. When I looked in my wallet though, I only had a ten dollar bill.

I handed that over to the lady and she said “God bless you.” Thoughts started running through my head about what I should have said to her – ask her if she truly knows God or if that’s just something she thinks sounds nice. Then I started beating myself up for giving away that much money like that. We just found out that we owe a lot in taxes and have other bills coming up. Hadn’t I just been thinking we need to be more careful with our money?

I said a quick prayer for her that God wouldn’t let her do anything bad with the money and that He would use it to bless her that she might know Him. Then I let it go.

This morning I stopped for gas. The pump wouldn’t take my card like normal – it just said “Remove nozzle.” I figured the credit card part was broken and I would just need to pay inside. So I pumped the gas. It stopped at $10 and wouldn’t go further. I went inside to pay for that and then come back and fill up. The cashier said that a man had just prepaid for $10 on that pump and must have left without actually pumping the gas.

I smiled as I walked outside because I knew God was just showing off. When I’ve been listening to the radio and praying for what happened in Boston, God is still watching me and with me. Sometimes I forget that He’s big enough that He’s everywhere and not just with those going through a crisis.

Revoke my geek card

If geeks had a card, mine would be revoked.

Here I am supposedly a WordPress wizard, and my WP sites got hacked. Most likely because I didn’t keep them updated.

And because my sites got hacked? There was an overload on the server that made everyone’s sites come to a screeching halt if they loaded at all. That’s what I’ve been dealing with the past two weeks.

Lovely.

On top of that, I got an iPhone 5S for Christmas that stopped ringing. It would only vibrate. After missing an important call last night, I finally Googled the solution. There’s a little switch right above the volume buttons on the side. It should not be showing orange. Seriously? A switch on the side of the phone? I never even paid any attention to it.

So…if I had a geek card, just know that I would relinquish it without a fight.

Tired of the drama

There’s nothing quite like being called out on your blog by your mom! Not completely related to that comment, we visited a church last Sunday. :)

The pastor preached out of 1 Corinthians 1:10-17 about division in the church. Even though he was talking about division in your physical, local church, I started thinking about how applicable this all was to the online church. You. Me. Other Christians who blog. Other Christians who just hang out on Facebook and Twitter.

Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. — 1 Corinthians 1:10

The pastor went on to say God made all of us different — there are Duke fans, UNC fans, and State (go Pack!) fans. We can disagree about a lot of things, but how we deal with that disagreement says more to people who aren’t Christians than anything else we can do. Bad news travels a lot faster than good news, so when church members disagree about whether or not people should watch the Super Bowl commercials, that gets a lot of attention.

But the one thing we should agree on is the Good News. What we say about Jesus. How we live that out online and in person. We should speak the same thing — and that same thing should be what the Bible says.

Online it’s easy for us to hide behind our screens, our keyboards. We say things that we wouldn’t say face-to-face. We judge others — call them stupid for watching the commercials or “I can’t believe you let your kid do that.” There are people who thrive on drama. You can love them without getting caught up in the drama. I quit blogging for a long time because I was tired of the drama — the promotions — all of it. I miss the conversations. Conversations on blogs in the comments. Conversations on Twitter. I miss hearing about my online friends’ families.

Before you like or share a post on Facebook, or share a blog post with others, think — is this tearing down someone else? Or is it building them up? Is it sharing Jesus or criticizing someone who may not even know Jesus? So, before we concern ourselves with “did you let your kids watch the half-time show?” Maybe we should be concerned with “do you know Jesus? When’s the last time you talked with Him?”

Reverse Mid-Life Crisis

I think I posted twice last year. I forgot my password and have almost forgotten exactly what to do back here. If you’re getting this in your email and wondering who I am, you’re not alone.

There’s a lot to catch you up on. I’ve been going through a reverse mid-life crisis:

  • November 1, 2012 : I stopped drinking Cokes. Cold turkey. Just stopped. Now it’s just water.
  • December 2012 : I sold my Harley.
  • I’ve been letting my bangs grow out. I’ve never not had bangs.
  • January 2013 : I started as a full-time employee with Proverbs 31 Ministries.

So while most people who go through a mid-life crisis start doing unhealthy things, buy a motorcycle or quit their job to pursue their dreams, I’m going in reverse.

The thing is I’m going through an identity crisis as well. I’m no longer a Coke addict. No longer a Harley Mama (though I still love riding with Duck on his motorcycle — I just don’t have my own anymore). No longer a business person.

I really am looking forward to the work I will get to be a part of at Proverbs, and I hope to have a little more time to blog than twice a year. Maybe I’ll even blog through a bit of my identity crisis :)

Oh! And I picked my one word for the year. It seems to be the “thing” to do. My word is DISCIPLINE. Well, self-discipline but I don’t know if hyphenated words count as one or two. I don’t want to break the rules! I’m praying this year that God will show me how to be more disciplined with my time — spending time in my Bible, working diligently, and playing with my family. I’m even praying He’ll show me how to be more disciplined blogging :)

So, how do you describe yourself? Who are you?

Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend

I wrote this in 2008 and have adjusted the details a little to update it.

16 years ago today, my Genius Better Half proposed to me and oh, he got me good! I never saw it coming!

We had been dating for about a year and half at this time. He sent me a dozen red roses at work that Friday with a note saying something to the effect of “you don’t have to wait any more.” I thought he was talking about my birthday present or something (my birthday is in 4 days). Totally clueless.

I drove my Mitsubishi Eclipse to his house after work, thinking we were going to dinner and a movie. I went in and talked with his mom for a bit, while he was doing something? I had no idea. When we left, he walked with me and opened my door. Nothing unusual because he has always been a gentleman and I let him (Side note: He still opens doors for me!). It was a little unusual for us to be taking my car instead of his pickup but I didn’t think anything about it. Totally clueless.

He asked me a few questions and got me distracted talking about myself — which is a nifty little trick he does so he doesn’t have to talk. He said he needed to stop by a softball field to talk with a friend of his for a few minutes. This was quite believable as our lives really revolved around softball at the time.

We pulled up to an empty field, but there was one on the top of the hill where some people were playing. I asked him if we were going up there and kinda wondered why he’d parked so far away. “Nope, we’re going out there.” Totally clueless.

He proceeded to pull out of the trunk: his guitar, a blanket, and a box. OH MY WORD! This was it! How in the world did I not see that he had to put down part of the back seat to fit his guitar in the trunk? He kept me looking forward the entire time he was helping me in the car!

I now interrupt this touching moment with some background. When he and I first started dating, he told me it was really easy for guys to say “I love you” in bed, but to say “I love you” on a softball field, now that really meant something. The first time he wanted to tell me he loved me, he drove to a softball field and took me out in center field to tell me. It was really sweet. Back to this touching moment.

He helped me walk out to center field. I was in high heels because we were, after all, supposed to be going to eat dinner — not a softball field. He laid down the blanket for me to stand on, got out his guitar and sang me a beautiful song to which I cannot remember the name of right now. I’ll find out and let you know. I know — mood buster. But just go with the flow.

After he finished singing, I applauded and cheered. He put his guitar down. He took my hands and began the speech he’d been planning for I don’t know how long. Oh, and of course he was down on one knee. I was so excited between smiling and crying, I didn’t let the poor boy finish his speech before I blurted out “yes I’ll marry you!” We hugged and kissed.

Next he hands me a box. Not just any box. A Victoria’s Secret pink and white striped box — bigger than a jewelry box. I opened it up and there was a tshirt inside that said “Diamonds are a girl’s best friend” with a picture of a softball diamond (you know, the field?). It was absolutely perfect!

Now, lest you think he’s a schmuk for not buying me a ring, he said he agonized over it and really wanted me to be with him to pick out the perfect ring. See, I am not a girlie-girl. Never have been. I don’t wear jewelry — don’t really like rings, etc. and have no clue about diamonds. So he purchased the shirt for me, and then proceeded to take me shopping — after dinner, a girl’s gotta eat! We shopped and shopped and learned everything there is to know about diamonds, and in the end, he bought me a really nice, really big diamond. I tried talking him into something smaller, but he refused and bought a really nice ring.

It was an absolutely unique and beautiful proposal. I knew after he and I had been dating for 2 months that I wanted to marry him — it took him a little longer to get to that point, but that was due to a past bad relationship. So, I cut him some slack :)

Oh yeah, when we sat down to eat, I called Mom and Dad to tell them the news. You know what? They already knew. He had driven out to my parents’ house without me knowing, and asked Dad for my hand in marriage. I have definitely got a Keeper. So back off you single women — he’s mine!

In October, we will celebrate 16 years of marriage, and nowadays, that’s really an accomplishment. So many couples around us are getting divorced. I thank God that He’s kept us together this long and I pray that God strengthens our marriage every day.

Hugs and kisses to you, My Genius Better Half! You gave me a wonderful memory when you proposed :) and even more wonderful memories have followed!