Saturday, August 28, 2010

Charis, the kitty, and Clara (the cat)


the kitty next door (who has gone missing today)

 Charis and the kitty

things are much different with the kids in school

we work hard at not trying to work, which is hard work when you can't sit still

we get distracted quite easily

like the book, If you give a mouse a muffin- one thing just leads to another and today somehow we started playing with kitty, till she/he (idk) decides she's had enough and goes home

charis has learned to stay on our side of the street, it's the highlight of the year, remember this?

and before you knew it he was back....the elementary music teaching training in me wanted to burst out in song "but the cat came back, he couldn't stay away...."

Which leads me to Clara....

I have been teaching privately for 16 years now. I never set out to be a private music teacher, I love the classroom and the paycheck and hope to return one day. I have one particular student who doesn't want to take lessons, I am going to introduce her to Clara the Cat this week. Who can resist learning piano with a cat? I am hopeful.

I am so thankful for work, for students and parents, for Clara Schumann and Alfred publishing...
For my man who blessed me with a new camera and a new laptop in the same year!
I am even thankful for distractions and all the precious moments I have with Charis each day.

update: my student loved Clara the Cat!!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Wednesday Morning


Simplicity. The state of being not the patten company. 

Uncombined. It's an synonym for Simplicity and I like it.

It's what I'm working on in my life right now. 

After a emotional morning again fighting the world and it's distractions, I finally sat down and got what I needed. 

A filling. Like the parched flowers that surrounded me, in my hurry I'd neglected the WORD of God, my covering, and a filling of the HOLY SPIRIT. Cause left to myself I am Lori-lead and that gets bad, fast. 

If you don't know HIM (Jesus) This sounds weird, I know, but to know him is to be changed... simple.

So you won't "get it" unless you start thinking about Him more. He is spirit, and HE is real, just as real as the wind that I feel on me right now, that I see moving the things around me. 

My baby introduced me to a new thought that excited me. I am sure it came from God. But his little messenger today was beyond cute. Adorable.

She walked over to the dried up leaves waving in the wind and said, "They are dancing and they want me to dance"

and she didn't waste time, she started joining in the dance!

Here's a few pics...

Oh  that I join the dance around me....God's working all around....

Monday, August 23, 2010

The big Switch- kid rooms remodel

6 years ago I tapped into my neighbor, who was quickly becoming a dear friend's, incredible creative ability...she not only has taught me to texture and paint old furniture, she introduced me to power tools. HER power tools, not her husbands. My mind is very creative and always four year old was into Thomas Trains and our collection was growing all the time. He loved those trains. I wanted to get him a train table for Christmas but I wanted one that could be stored under the bed and pulled out. Couldn't find one. At the time he had a large bed and room to store it. The legs would be removeable. Slide ins. I put my husband to work building it, he and his dad build the top but never could make the removeable legs I wanted so I marched down the hill to my neighbor's and said, "What do I do?" This is what I want. And we figured it out. It was the best Christmas, we had it waiting under the tree with new trains set up - he was SO excited. I loved age 4. sigh

My mind got to creating again and I wanted to make something as big for 2 year old Cady. Pottery Barn kids displayed a book shelf/doll house. Cool neighbor had made one before. She helped me and we did it. Cady used it more for a bookshelf than a Barbie house. But now that's all it is and Barbie has moved in, along with all her naked friends, lol.

All that to say.....

I fell in love in power tools and 2 weeks before Christmas I asked for power tools for Christmas and guess I got them! they even came in a tote bag!

I really haven't used it since 2004, but I brought it back the last few weeks and now understand why Cody always wants me to put his tools back where they belong. I finally got it all together ( in my tool bag that is, not my whole life). And I redid the kids rooms.

I am not unfortunately doing this on my blog, it's on facebook so you'll have to go here to see all the pictures and comments and how I did this all on a dime! not really but I did do it way cheap, under $100 not including paint (that was around 100$  too)

putting that Proverbs 31 woman to shame,
Lori Deevers :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My Story

I had was in the town of Marlow today. Had a little time before starting back to teaching music lessons so I went in Oo la la. Antique/Boutique shopping. I didn't need anything and really didn't have the money but when I saw this I had to have it.

I finished "Our story" last night and it's the first literary thing I've ever done. I am so relieved. There have been a lack of comments on the last 10 posts and so while I am satisfied in the fact that I finished and my family will have this story for generations I am wondering, "Does it matter?"

"Does anyone care?"

And I saw this and it was a "sign". A literal sign in the store. It brought hope and encouragement and so I bought it. I intend on giving it as an apartment warning gift for a friend who shares my love for written word. But I had to share it's beauty, it's message and to encourage you- YOUR story matters too. Tell it.

Monday, August 16, 2010

The story of Us: The End!

It was early Monday morning, the third week in August 1996. We’d been married 3 weeks. All of a sudden the honeymoon was over and we were getting ready to part ways. How could this have happened so quickly.
We’d been so close that last year at college, now he was on his way to Ft. Worth and I was on my way back to Chickasha and my partner in crime was missing.  I was flying solo. 
“I bet we remember this day years from now” he replied over soggy, cheap cereal. 
“It’s a beginning.” 
“Yeah”  Too tired to get philosophical or historical.
“And we are dirt poor. I bet when we look back on these days they’ll be some of the best days of our lives.” 
He was right. Little in our pockets, a lifetime ahead of us, and each other at night- FINALLY! 
We quickly realized the poor part. 
I finally had found peace in marrying Cody about a week before the wedding. I enjoyed every minute of the wedding. I loved having my best friends there and family surrounding me. I loved the blending of two families. I loved that our father’s blessed us during the ceremony. I even loved Cody’s 10 crazy ushers leaping down the isle to hold candles before my entrance. I loved that my “kids” were there that I’d babysat for in NC. They were my flower girls. It was a wonderful week leading up to the biggest day of my life so far. No bother that August 3rd was hot and the a/c went out and my cake was melting, there’s a point you don’t care anymore- let someone else worry about that. 
The day after the wedding, however, I was introduced to real life. Where you realize Cinderella couldn’t have possibly lived “happily ever after”. 
It was obvious we were young and didn’t have money. And while money isn’t everything- it sure helps.
We woke up in an small family trailer with an add-on, stocked full of food and spiders. We found fiddlebacks in the beds. And speaking of beds, there no less than 5 to choose from, including a water bed. I cooked breakfast that Sunday morning and we set off looking for something to do. We were overlooking the Arkansas River not too far from Webber Falls and Lake Tenkiller in NE Oklahoma. This trailer honeymoon villa was a suggestion from my dad. Who had a knack for saving money on hotels and had never seen the place. It was great for a family reunion. But not really every bride’s dream honeymoon spot.
By Monday we’d done everything we’d wanted to do there and headed to Oklahoma City. We stayed one night in a Holiday Inn on the north part of town. We shopped and went to the zoo and were home by Tuesday.
My relatives that had come for the wedding were still there. The honeymoon was too short and it was too soon to come home. 
We came home to car trouble, which lead to a frustrated Cody. 
Who was this strange and mad person I just married. He was Mr. Right on Saturday and by Wed. he’s mad as a hornet. 
The car trouble let to a cut hand which led to doctor trouble because we didn’t have insurance. Suddenly on our own and poor wasn’t so glamorous. It was real and it was tough. 
Not only did we get a glimpse at real life that first week, we also got a taste of what being married and in the ministry was like. First, God provided medical care- mom and dad’s neighbor was a ENT doctor who stitched up Cody’s hand for free. And 14 years later God still provides each and every need we have. 
Then there was a young adult lake trip. 
We had been married less than a week and we were scheduled to go with 50 other young adults (including Cody’s parents) on three house boats to Lake Texoma for fun times.  Hum, should be interesting. Just so happened there was one room with a door on one of the boats. They were nice and gave it to us. But how embarrassing! I also got severally water logged on that trip after being drug through the water attached to a parasail. 
The next few weeks were less eventful thank goodness.
We realized pre-marital counseling would’ve been a good idea. Nontheless, with divorce not an option we had to search for answers, bend a lot, and forgive a lot. And that has made the difference. 
Each chapter of our story has had highs and lows. It’s a beautiful tapestry of God’s grace and human love. 
Leaving a legacy of faithfulness and love, 
Lorina Elizabeth Robbins DEEVERS

The sTory of us: Spring Break in NC

The plane landed in Raleigh and my best friend since 5th grade picked me up. We headed north to see my brother and snow ski in the mountains of Virginia.

As the week progressed we made our rounds seeing my favorite people and places and eating at all the  restaurants Raleigh had to offer.

I missed Cody. He was skiing in Flagstaff, viewing the Grand Canyon and playing poker on a hand held game thing. His aunt was elated he'd come to see them. She had been so sweet and encouraging about our engagement.

The time apart was good. Once that ring was on my finger things changed a little. The 8 month engagement was definitely needed. We had decided to get married. There were choices to be made, a house to fix up and we were learning we didn't see eye to eye on some things.There were plenty of conversations about how we couldn't wait to live together and be married and how wonderful it would be to fix dinner and fold laundry together. He told me several times how glad he was I had said yes.

There were also some good fights too. Plenty of selfishness to go around. Living together wouldn't be as easy as I'd imagined. There would be differences of opinion. And I was learning very quickly men DO NOT think like women do. They are geared altogether differently. What I know now is that it was meant to be that way. And when it's good, it's real good but when we are selfish it gets bad and quick.

He was gracious enough to even warn me...

"It's gonna take all the patience you have" this came with an apology after an argument.

We always worked through it, he was after all getting a degree in Communication. :)

Coupled with "working it out" was the doubt. Not so much over marring Cody as it was in doing the wrong thing and having to live with that choice. " Till death do us part" ....I trusted God enough to know if he wanted us together he'd take care of whatever problems we'd encounter down the road. I just had to make sure "US" was his plan not merely mine.

The problem with "my plan" was that it is shaky ground. My plans change. My heart deceives me. And I was about to prove again how silly I can be. I had a past flame, a friend, a confident that I always held dear.

Someone I'd give a second chance to.

I had to know if there was anything still there. I had after all been jerked out of state 3 years before during the middle of a relationship. But this wasn't him, he'd moved on and I was happy for him. This was the first guy who made it hard to concentrate when he walked in the room.

We found some time , just the two of us, in the car driving to eat out with the large group.

"So you are really engaged? What's he like?"

"Yup.....You'd like him, he's a great guy"

"What kinda car does he drive?"

" Does that matter? Why does that matter? Are you for real? Eh, you are a male too...."

"A green pickup" The only thing Oklahoma boys drive.

"So you are really gonna do this?"

"Yes" Whoa, is he gonna try to talk me out of this? No one has done that! "How's your girlfriend?"

"We are good. ....blah blah blah blah blah blah blah....."

I wanted to go home.

"It's so weird seeing you again." He said.

"Why didn't you write or call? I like hearing from you"

"I guess it's like you are not a part of my life anymore"

I was waiting for words that wouldn't be said.

Our lives were on two different tracks headed in two different directions and that was what I needed to know. 

Spring became summer and I doubted a little less cause I had found someone, someone who wanted the privilege of spending the rest of his life with me. God had given us a gift. The gift of each other and time.

We attended the showers and fixed the house.  Between the camps and other ministry activities we stayed busy. At night we'd count the days till we wouldn't have to say goodnight and leave each other's embrace.

Things were quickly coming together for a beautiful navy, gold and red wedding the first weekend in August.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Story of Us: till death do you part, just remember....

“Till death do you part.....?” 
Billy and Joe would tell me this ,with a smile,  every time I saw them.  Billy was our youth minister and Cody had asked him to be the best man. Then he changed his mind and asked his dad. It was the right thing to do, I guess. Poor Billy. 
Joe. He “took” to me the moment I walked off the yellow Ryder moving truck in the parking lot of Immanuel Baptist Church November 1992. God rigged that. He confronted me when I was dating someone I shouldn’t have my junior year. He is still who I call when I need prayer. He was in his 50’s and another groomsman. 
Chad made #4 groomsmen. My sister was my choice for maid of honor. I'll be forever thankful for her. Choosing bridesmaids was a hard job. I am absolutely positive I offended people and I worried over it, but not too long because Cody had asked 10 guys to be ushers and I needed a job for them to do. While the wedding would be big, 10 was a bit much.  

Winter began to thaw and Spring was bursting forth with it’s colorful bouquet. I was excited about wedding details while at the same time rehearsing doubt in my mind. But it all melted away when we where together. The attraction was stronger than any I’d ever known. It was getting stronger not weaker. I needed a clear head to think. 
Cody would be graduating from college. April 19th, a year after the OKC bombing, he received a Bachelors of Art in Communication. He was headed to Southwestern in the fall. With or without me. That had always been the plan. We’d talked about moving down there, I’d transfer. But in the end it made more sense to stay where the house and the work was, we were gonna need the jobs. I had begun to teach privately more and more.  
We’d even thought about Southeastern Seminary 15 miles from where I’d moved from. But we had no money to move with and no job to go to. Living in North Carolina would have to wait. But I had decided to go for a visit on spring break. Cody went to his Aunt’s in Arizona and I boarded an American Airlines plane alone headed for Raleigh. 
There was one more person I wanted to see before I committed a lifetime to Cody. But would HE want to see me? I needed to know....


This may be the fastest post I ever write but God has showed me something on my arm and it has to do with my very slow marathon of the story of us.....

Look closely at my arm. The scar at the bottom of the picture was from cooking through the Pioneer Woman cooks in January. It's still there. Because at the time I didn't have an aloe plant nor a store near by that had good medicine for this.

At the top of my arm is another scar, but good luck finding happened 2 weeks ago. It's healing and I'm so glad it's not presently on my arm. My wonderful neighbor had aloe, the original plant- and it healed it.

This past week I've gone through a "wounding" , not physical but emotional and I am tending to it. In God's word, in singing his praise and on my knees- it's the only way I'm gonna win this battle that's going on inside of me. It's the right medicine for the healing....It's the aloe...and in time I hope I am not still bitter, unforgiving and showing physical signs of my hurt. Wounds properly cared for can heal. Some wounds are deep, and it takes a lot of time. I was burned on my leg as a 10 year old, had the scar for years, but 22 years later you can't see it.

So that's my excuse for being a little silent this week....I'm hurt but healing. Praise God! He is still loves me, he still sees me and he's working it out.

"I am the God that heals you." Exodus 15:6

"Turn to me for Healing." Isaiah 6:10b

found this blog post about healing later by Anne Jackson- she says - "We are each responsible for our own healing" i found that interesting....i guess while God is the healer we still have to seek the healing

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The story of us: doubt

It was the most wonderful time of the year- Christmas. We had snow, we had my older brothers home and I had a ring on my finger. I was beaming. 

Chris and I had gone to Oklahoma city and were eating lunch downtown at the Spaghetti Warehouse when he brought it up. He hadn’t been around much since he lived in VA. I had plans to move out there a year ago. He probably felt the loss more than I did. I was content with the Saudi Arbians at USAO and figured I’d stay now. 
“So you are getting married”
no questions, no tears, no warnings
“Yup” I was curious as to what he’d say- I had ALWAYS looked up to Chris, if I needed to be talked out of something I would’ve listened to him. 
“Better to marry than to BURN with passion”  He grew up with Johnny the philosopher too, ( and the Bible too I guess :)
And that was about it, he and Jon would be asked to be ushers. They’d be there, and they’d leave before the reception to go see a rangers game in Texas. Boys.
Or maybe the hurt of Chris’ fiance leaving him was too much to take. It should’ve been his wedding we were planning. She walked out on all of us. Would Chris give it another shot- risk it all again or was the wound too deep? 
No one at school was surprised. Three other friends were newly engaged too over the break. We’d all end up getting married three weekends in a row. The summer of weddings.
I needed a dress. I needed ideas. I needed a cake. I needed bridesmaids, ( to protect the not so innocent I’ll keep that turmoil to my self).
Cody and I were in the city one day up by Penn Square Mall and dropped by a little wedding boutique.  Just to see what the store was. 
Within minutes I was in a dressing room trying on dresses. The princess puffy sleeves dress. In my size, on sale- I bought it and yes Cody saw it that day. 14 years later, I am glad to report nothing bad happened because of it, either.
Dress check.Date-check. Family knowing-check. No one trying to talk me out of this-check.
That was just how they rolled. You make your own bed, be prepared to sleep in it. So it was my choice. And I constantly doubted it. Was all this doubt good? Was it normal?
I just didn’t want to do the wrong thing. So I stayed close to God, read the Bible and prayed like crazy....willing to call it off it wasn’t God’s best for me. 

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Story of Us- the Proposal!

I had ceased anticipating and just about asked for my ring back. It had been 3 months. What was the deal? He wasn’t acting like anything was wrong and he still like to kiss.
You’d think he’d want to make it obvious we were together, since I had entered the college scene the guy choices were much larger. I knew there were more fish in the sea outside of Stephens County! A couple in particular weren’t deterred by the amount of time Cody and I spent together and pursued a lot. Even giving me a list of reasons to leave Cody. While mostly in jest, I did have to compare him to each new person I met. Would so and so make a better husband? Cody won out every time. 
He was probably waiting for Christmas. 
He’d threatened to do it at church in front of lots of people. Um, no, thanks for the warning. And, no.
My first semester of college was finished, I’d gotten straight A’s- finished 16 hours- I was on my way. Now if I could just get my ring back. 
We had brought in a new staff member to help with young adults there at our church. The church would vote in support of the leadership’s decision and then we had a little party planned at our house afterward. With snow on the ground that Dec. 21st night it we enjoyed the party and new friends. As usually Cody waited unitl everyone else left. We didn’t need an audience when we kissed goodnight, (and we liked to take our time- there was much to be said each night :)
I slipped on a light jacket and walked him out to his car. He was very slow, normally he was all on top of things. And he was quiet. Way too quiet for Cody Deevers. After the first 15 min. of very little talking or kissing I knew something was different, something was wrong. 
Was he going to ask me tonight? Really? Here? What am I wearing? Does my breath stink? How do I look? This could be it. IT! 
“Not much to say tonight?”
“ Something wrong?”
Nods no. 
“You are not saying much” 
Well then kiss me :)
We went on for what seemed hours. We had another 2 conversations just like that one when he FINALLY said something. 
“ Do you know where we are? “ 
My front yard, yes, pretty sure.
“It’s where we had our first kiss a year ago.” 
“It is isn’t it” I replied. Smile. This has got to be it. Where’s that ring?
Stall another awkward 10 min, head down, smiling, no words. 
Then in a slowness I had not known Cody possessed and have not seen since he uttered these words...
“ Lori, I love you, would you do my the honor of being my wife?”
Cue ring. No knee bending though- too much snow?
“Yes” hug, “Oh YES!” 
I slipped on the ring, and he went home. I don’t know what he thought that night before closing his eyes in sleep but I practiced saying my new name cause hot dog I was getting married! 
The next day, just a few before Christmas, I went up to the church Cody and my dad were working at for something. Juanita Brown was answering calls that morning and was the first to notice the ring. My mom was with me and was shocked- letting out her notorious laugh. My brother’s would be there soon for Christmas- what would they say? Jon and his girlfriend weren’t married yet and Chris had just had his heart broken. Jon was in and out in no more than 3 days. Chris stayed longer. This would be hard. 
Cause he’d risked it all for love too, and lost- big time.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Welcome Blog Hoppers!

For friends and family this is a pause in my "Our Story" marathon. I almost have a ring ....can you believe it ?

Blog Hoppers...I started a love story and will finish it this week, simply click my old high school purple back pack on the side that says "The Story of Us" or the link at top, both will get you to one page of the whole story.

This is simply an intro to the blog for Blog Hop '10 (forgive me for no link there, I can't figure out how to copy past with links on my new mac)

My blog is categorized by the bags I and those I love carry. I am a private music instructor and have a link on the side to that site. And we also have a lego site showing all things legos in our lives... if you are into that click here. 

I'm an Oklahoman by choice, Texan by birth, with a childhood spent growing up under pine trees in NC. I write about raising 3 kids under ten, our crazy extended family, the people we know and life and love in a parsonage... 

The story of us: a ring?

Grandma Marie. (How I miss her)  She was the reason Cody and I went to Oklahoma City on one of our first dates. He was to pick her up at the airport. Only he'd never gone to the airport. He was unaware of the "one way ness" of the airport. It made me laugh. I'll never forget my first sight of grandma Marie waiting patiently for her grandson after he'd circled round and round the terminal. He always could make me laugh. 

Cody's grandmother had married her next door neighbor in February. Leaving his home vacant. 

Since we were in school and poor this was just what we were looking for. It needed a lot of work and he agreed to $100 rent. Something we could afford! We weren’t into debt so it all had to work out if we were really going to get married.I guess we figured  we'd just "live on love". Ha! If only you could.
After I knew he was serious and I told him about the ring I wanted, figured he should know what I wanted in case he wanted to make this official and all. 
The ring was my mother’s. She had gotten something on it from her mother. She hadn’t worn it in years. The diamond had fallen out and in the midst of raising 4 kids, attending too many ballgames and started a new church alongside my dad they hadn’t ever repaired it. 
As a little girl I love’d sitting in her vanity area and looking through the jewelry. I remember the box exactly. I’d always admired that ring. 
I asked (more like took probably) if I could give it to Cody, I’d like that to be my ring. 
So one day at the house I gave it to him in September. Gee, to know what went through his mind....
So I gave him 10 days to fix the ring and waited anxiously for the proposal of a lifetime! 

The Story of Us: the ring of fire part 2

The taste of love is sweet. 
When hearts, like ours meet. 
I fell for you like a child. 
Oh but the fire went wild. 
Thank you Johnny Cash, the philosopher. I couldn’t have said it better myself!
I was aware of Johnny’s “ ring of fire” and knew if I jumped in I wouldn’t come out unburned. It was enough to keep me saying no.

 I needed to tell my parents. I hadn’t gotten up the nerve to do it. To this day I wonder what they thought? I know they were young once, too, but it’s all together different when it’s your 17 year old daughter talking to you on a couch in Red River, NM about getting married.
He had knelt beside the couch I was sleeping on. With the all very familiar scope breath he’d prayed for me as he’d done a thousand times before since the day I was born. 
“Ummm, Cody and I really like each other and have kinda talked about getting married...”
Just like I assumed he’d do, he remained calm, collected his thoughts and responded, “ Well, (pause)  Cody is a wonderful young man. I always hoped one of my sons would become a preacher, I guess a son in law would be just fine.” 
And I really don’t remember the rest of the conversation. He prayed we'd know and follow God's will for our relationship. 
He knew. They knew. So they both knew he wasn’t going anywhere. And they hadn’t told me to wait, given me any warnings or even looked concerned. I needed a sign. A stop sign if this was not good. My parents were always ones to let you make your own mistakes. I am a people pleaser and don't like to make mistakes. I never wanted to regret. So I weighed every decision a thousand times. It's exhausting.
Maybe Cody's family would give me a sign...His Aunt Vivian (the great gardener and cooker of rabbit) had been in the family for years and she didn't pull me aside telling me to run for my life. But I prayed everyday if this wasn't meant to be that I'd know and have the courage to do the right thing even if my heart was in too deep.

I got a good sign from Cody when I got back. We went the entire vacation week without talking on the phone. No cell phones- calling cards were what I had to use. He was playing volleyball at the Wilkins home so I went over there to join the group and of course see him. When he saw me he said, "Time Out" ran over in Deever fashion grabbed me up, kissed me and ran back to position on the court. Smile. I think he likes me. Maybe he wants to keep me.

August meant back to school in Oklahoma.   
Cody and I had never been together a whole lot. He split his time between school and work and me. Now we were working together at the youth center with all those kids and going to school together.  We were about to spend a lot more time together. 
One of two things was bound to happen. One, we’d get tired of each other and realize this wasn’t gonna work or two, the flame’d get hotter.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Story of us: The Ring of Fire

Heart out on the line. 
Risking a lot for someone I’d been dating less than 9 months. 
Love is funny like that. Somehow not much else matters when you are lost in each others arms. But we had yet to talk about a lifetime. We were getting closer. People were talking. I had finally graduated high school. Wahoo! And there was that whole ring thing. Big misunderstanding, I do not know what came over me.
June came and went, July melted into August and it was time to go back to school. The youth center was an after school program now. While Cody ran it, several of us helped when we could. Cody had a pretty easy semester at USAO, taking in a lot of history classes. 
I on the other hand was ready for the brain-washing to begin. I knew my faith would be tested. Individuals in Contemporary Society here I came! 
I still didn’t have a clue what I wanted to study. I just wanted to get in and out and on with life. Life with Cody. 
The first of August my parents took my sister and I out to New Mexico on a vacation. With little more on the agenda than eating and family time,  My sister and I took off on foot or car every day exploring Red River. I had brought my borrowed guitar on the trip. I needed pictures for my upcoming cd I was dreaming about recording so Debbie took no less than 24 pictures of me and that guitar on every trail, rock and creek we could find. This was when film limited how many pictures we could take otherwise we’d have taken 100. While I had thought I’d heard God telling me I wasn’t made to be a soloist and that the spotlight wouldn’t be mine- my heart still tried to go a different route. 

I sat in choir the first week of college as an undecided student. Hum....
English Education
Vocal Performance
Music Education
That’s what I’d narrowed it down to. Music Ed. took 30 extra hours. 30. That’s an entire year longer than the other 2. 
Just like when I stepped into that Ryder truck headed to Oklahoma, leaving all I’d known behind and just like when I kept talking to a want-a -be preacher boy with a twangy accent - Someone was nudging me in the way he wanted me to go. The way he’d created me to go.    And through the advice of some good counselors I changed my schedule, added some classes and gave in to what I knew I was supposed to do- Music Education. 
Weeks before in our condo in Red River, NM I finally had the conversation with my parents I had been dreading all summer. 
Cody wasn’t going anywhere. He and I had talked about getting married. But I was about to turn 18, hardly old enough for that kind of commitment. I had 2 older brothers in their mid 20‘s who weren’t even married. What would dad say to this? Mom never forced her opinion on me, I really didn’t know where she stood and I knew she would give advice if I asked. Dad would be the one to ask, what would say, did he know? Would he want me to wait? I wasn’t sure waiting was option. I’d been raised listening to the music of Johnny Cash and I finally figured out what that “ring of fire” song was talking about- and we were about to fall. 

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Story of Us: Love = Risk

They had cooked thumper. 
And it tasted like chicken. 
I was a traveler. Raised in a family that embraced other ethnicities, cultures and people. I thought of my journey to Oklahoma as a short term mission trip. Get in, get out- do what you can. I never planned on staying. 

Trying rabbit, albeit not by choice, at Cody's Uncle Bob's was just a new experience, right? When in Rome do as the Romans.....Surely not all family gatherings included Bambi's little friend?
It was increasing desire to be with Cody that was throwing me for a loop. The closer we got the more it looked like I wasn’t getting out of Oklahoma anytime soon. And rabbit might become a staple. 

Aunt Vivian was a wonderful cook actually. I loved all the homegrown veggies and homemade ice cream. Remember I was a Laura Ingalls Wilder fan?
We eventually drove off those mountains of Sand Springs and headed back to SW OK . 

The summer was filled with camps and trips with our church. Cody even took the invite to the Southern Baptist Convention in Atlanta with my dad. He came back with stories. Hard not to traveling with my dad. 

As soon as he returned we had a service dedicating the David Baker Youth Center- Cody’s new ministry job. The center was opened everyday for kids to come play, hang out, get snacks and learn more about Jesus Christ. The service was nice. David’s family  was honored and a plaque made. I sang and Cody spoke. 

And the kids came. Those kids were hilarious. I have more stories than I have time to tell. We created the “Good Gang”. When the kids memorized the 10 commandments they got in the “Good Gang” , complete with a t-shirt. We had adults and teenagers joining as well as kids as young as 4. 
A man willing to invest in others, especially children is very attractive. While our days were spent playing pool, ping pong and laughing with kids our nights were spent watching the Rangers baseball, renting movies, or hanging out with friends and family. And saying goodnight. We could really drag that good night kiss out. And night after night it was getting harder and harder. 
My oldest brother came for a visit for several weeks in June. He was living back east. We enjoyed the time together, he and Cody got to know each better. When he went home his fiance left him. Ran off with someone else. We hurt for him. He threw the ring in the forest. 
Love is risky. The deeper you get in, the more it hurts when it ends. The question is when does it end? I have heard it said, “All good things come to an end eventually” This side of heaven that is. While I am all about Jesus I have to admit the initial draw for me was “Happily ever after”. Eternal good times.

So either you split apart here on earth or you love your whole life long and are torn apart by death in the end. But either way it hurts. And it was risky. Too risky? 

Strangely, you don't think about risks when your kissing goodnight at 17, falling more and more in love everyday.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

anniversary gift & our story marathon....

Tuesday August 3rd marks my 14 wedding anniversary. 14 years have come and gone. While at camp, again, I wrote a lot on my anniversary gift.

When I walked in from Ft. Worth and visiting my brother I saw this.....

one all my stuff was gone. I believe my words were, "What have you done?"

Had I known it was mine I would've shouted. But I didn't know what to think till I saw this...

And I knew Mr. Incredible had outdone himself.  I am very excited and grateful. I needed a computer but this is a huge blessing! So Seattle will have to wait till next year (hopefully).

I recently talked with a young woman, eager and excited about starting a life in the ministry.

Here's what I've learned in 15 years (we were in a year before we married) that I wish I could tell her but won't. It's an adventure you live, you can't navigate it like you want. And while some similarities exist, you'll have your own story one day.

You may end up in a 12 by 12 one room apartment with IKea nowhere around with 4 kids everyday. You may have to send him off for a year to minister to our military not knowing when or if you'll see him. You may move to itty bitty towns with no stores far from STarbucks. You may have to care for children that smell, or clean up puke, or clean toilets when your trained to sing arias, write novels or teach college Bible classes. You may cry yourself to sleep worrying why he won't talk anymore when he  used to be open, honest, and real. You may ride side saddle on a motorcycle with your family of 5 all with you maneuvering between many moving vehicles. You may wish many times for the King of Kings to come and take over.

Hopefully you'll have the armor of a knight, the courage of a king, the grace of a queen and the hope of a princess. (Cooking, hospitality and piano playing aren't bad ideas either) May you have good friends to encourage you and sense to praise Jesus in the midst of a storm and pain. May you have treasures money can't buy, watermelons at your door and friends at your table. May your knees be worn from kneeling in prayer and your Bible marked through and through.

As a new blog I found put it....ministry is "oh so fabulous" 

To celebrate the journey and where it's taken us, I'll write with a tender heart this week....the final 8 chapters of "Our Story"