Monday, November 29

To Decorate or Not To Decorate

For some strange reason, I am struggling with whether or not to decorate for Christmas this year…  It’s so much work.  So much extra clutter.  Bruce doesn’t care for it.  We will be spending Christmas with my sister and her husband, so it’s not like we’ll even be here for the actual DAY of Christmas.  Hmmm…. What to do. What to do.
I remember a time when it was all I could do to wait until after Thanksgiving to start decorating for Christmas.  And I had TONS of decorations, and they were EVERYWHERE!      But now…
Am I too old for Christmas? 
Have I reached the point in my life (finally) where I’ve learned that less is more – that simpler is better?
Has Bruce’s disdain for the holidays rubbed off on me too much?
(OK, “disdain” is probably a little over-the-top, but you get the idea)
Am I just plain lazy?
Am I afraid of the possible creatures I find among the decorations once we get them from the attic - like the 4-legged or 8-legged varieties? (shudder)
Maybe it’s all of the above. 
Or none of it. 
But I’m sure not feeling motivated. 

Thursday, November 25



I have been seeing TONS of commercials lately advertising all of the bargains I could find at various stores on Black Friday.  I have even seens commercials advertising all of the places where I could shop ON Thanksgiving.  Apparently, Thanksgiving has been sucked into the addicting commercialism that used to be reserved mostly for Christmas.  And that kinda annoys me.  So, I whipped out my Bible this morning to renew my mind with verses of thanks, to refresh my spirit with reminders of the true meaning of Thanksgiving.  Here are some of the truth nuggets I found:

Psalm 100
Shout with joy to the Lord, all the earth! Worship the Lord with gladness. Come before him, singing with joy. Acknowledge that the Lord is God! He made us, and we are his. We are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation.

Psalm 30:11-12
You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy, that I might sing praises to you and not be silent.  O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!

Colossians 3:17
And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.

Psalm 105:1-2
Give thanks to the Lord and proclaim his greatness. Let the whole world know what he has done. Sing to him; yes, sing his praises. Tell everyone about his wonderful deeds.

I Chronicles 29:11-13
Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty. Everything in the heavens and on earth is yours, O Lord, and this is your kingdom. We adore you as the one who is over all things. Wealth and honor come from you alone, for you rule over everything. Power and might are in your hand, and at your discretion people are made great and given strength. O our God, we thank you and praise your glorious name!

Ahh...  GOOD WORD!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!



Most of the time on weekends or days off from work, I like to sleep in.  I mean, who's going to pass up a few extra hours of sleep? 

But occasionally, I get up a bit on the early side just to enjoy the day before it starts getting away from me.  I grab some coffee and an extra blanket and then get into my big chair for some serious snuggle time with the girls.  Sometimes I indulge in guilty-pleasure TV (like Saved by the Bell), sometimes a movie, sometimes I read or stitch.  In the fall or spring, sometimes I grab my coffee and blanket and I sit out on the porch in the adirondack chairs while the girls scurry about looking for squirrels or chipmunks. 

Ahhh...  There's just something so therapeutic about having a quiet morning.  Too bad every day can't begin this way.  Oh well.  For now, I'll pour myself some more coffee and just enjoy this one.     

Tuesday, November 23



It's crazy how much a part of my life my dogs are.  And I know you are probably laughing at me for saying that, especially if you are not a pet owner, but that's ok.  I am not ashamed at how my girls fill my life with extra bits of happiness and laughter.

Dixie is 10 now.  She's our "blonde" dog - the one most folks are drawn to because her floofity hair will always make her look younger and extra-pettable. She's extra spunky - but she's also a bit air headed (She once jumped off a second-story balcony to play with another dog on the ground below).  But that silly dog is so endearing.  She frolics around the yard without fear, ears pinned back in just complete uninhibited joy.  I wish I was more like that in life.  Brave, silly Dixie.

Daisy is 11, and she will always be "my first dog," my first baby.  She's much more subdued than Dixie, and smarter.  She's also more sensitive.  She comes to me when I am crying, and licks me in reassurance.  She lets me snuggle with her.  She THRIVES on love and attention, and I am all too eager to give it to her.  Sweet, sappy Daisy.

Someday, Bruce and I will get another dog, and we will love that one too.  But for now, I am content with just my girls.



Bruce and I ate dinner with Keith and Leslie, sort of a reconnect/staff meeting of sorts.  And as if the mini burgers, salad bar and endless fries at Ruby Tuesday weren't awesome enough (one word: YUM), the company was spectacular!  I LOVE how the 4 of us can connect so openly about things and still get the job done.  Nobody takes offense to constructive criticisms or suggestions, everyone works towards the common good, and we have a great time doing it.  God is so good to give us such wonderful people to work with and to learn from.  :)

Monday, November 22



Bruce and I took 13 college peeps to Lake Norman this past weekend for our College Retreat, and it was awesome!  We stayed in a great big house right on the water, lots of windows, lots of room, lots of food, lots of laughing, lots of good God-talks...

There's something so wonderful about getting away from the norm, and just reconnecting with God and each other on a different level.  And it's even more wonderful to see the college students doing all that too.

I'm back in the office today, exhausted almost beyond belief, but it was so worth it!



Saturday morning, I sat in the breakfast nook of the lake house, drinking coffee and watching the mist rise off of Lake Norman, as 4 college students prepped breakfast for the group.  Baked oatmeal, French toast casserole, scrambled eggs, sausage and bacon...  it was divine! 

I enjoy cooking - I actually feel like I do it pretty well.  But now and then, it's just so nice to have someone else take care of all that.  There's something SO GOOD about someone else's cooking. I tell Bruce all the time that my coffee tastes better when he makes it for me - he thinks I say that out of my laziness, but it's truly because it's just nice to be served now and then.  And when it's served out of love....YUMMY!!!

Can I have some more please? 


Is that ridiculous?  Is that vain?  Is that girly?


But I tell you this, while you might believe I wake up each morning looking this ravishing and amazing (hardee har har...), there's actually a good bit of "product" that goes into my day.

Shampoo, conditioner, scrubs, pastes, lotions, sprays, polishes, powders, glosses, creams...  Oh the list could go on forever (seriously, I mean FOR-EV-ERRRRRR.....).  And, while I am so not the typical princess-ish girly-girl, there is something about certain beauty products that just make me oh so happy.

Like a good face powder that covers without being cakey.
Or a toothpaste that cleans well, freshens breath AND whitens. 
Or a mascara that gives your lashes that little touch of "flirt."
Or a lotion or body spray that makes you huggable but not fruitcake-like.
Ooooh, or a nail polish in a fun color that actually lasts (see Sally Hansen's complete salon manicure collection).

It is because of all of these things that I could walk around CVS or Walgreens for HOURS and be completely happy.  Seriously.  I think I could have a problem.

Is that crazy?


But I think not.  :) 

Thursday, November 18



I know that probably seems weird, that I am thankful for tears.  Probably most people do not like them, maybe even despise them.  I actually used to be one of those people - and sometimes still struggle with them, or at least my acceptance of them.  But when they are put into proper context, I find I am actually grateful for them.

Last night, I had a good cry (I'm surprised at myself for admitting that.  But now it's out there, so I'm gonna go with it).

Last night, I had a good cry.  And once the first few tears fell, they just kept coming and coming, until I couldn't speak (except for in a very ugly squeaky voice), and the dogs raced to my aid for surely I must have been dying, and Bruce hovered over me in that "I'm-your-husband-so-I-care-but-I-don't-know-what to-do" state of confusion. 

But the process of crying has a very cleansing affect on me, and on my thoughts.  I suspect it's that way for most of us.  At first, we begin crying simply because we cannot help it. Then we continue because, well, now we're on a roll.  We might pause for a moment to think about the situation, then begin again until the need for tears has subsided and the crying session ends.  And then what happens?  A feeling of renewal, of quiet, or comfort, of newness.  Man, I felt AMAZING when I woke up this morning, like it was TRULY a brand new day!  And I truly believe it was because my abundance of unused tears had been reduced.

It's not that I enjoy crying, mind you, but I do enjoy the peace that comes thereafter.  It must be that pesky Holy Comforter at work again.!  :) 

Psalm 73:26 - My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

Wednesday, November 17



It always amazes me at the way God smiles at me – sometimes in big ways, and sometimes in small ways. Here are some that I’ve noticed lately:
  • Seeing the autumn leaves dance on the breeze as I walked across campus today
  • Hearing the laughter of friends around a bonfire
  • Finding the perfect supplies for the College Retreat at the Dollar Store  
  • An email from a friend saying she misses me
  • Getting an unexpected bill from the eye doctor on the same day that we get a letter from Bruce’s flex spending account telling us we have enough money left to cover it
  • New inspiration for an art project
  • Being one of the people that a friend trusts enough to share details about her love interest
  • Watching the squirrels tirelessly gather acorns and bury them outside my office window
  • The 6:45 am friendliness of the girl at Dunkin Donuts
I wonder what God smiles you guys have seen?

Tuesday, November 16

14 DAYS OF THANKS - Day 10

The start of something is always an exciting point for me.  Fresh.  New.  Full of promise.  So much potential.  No blemishes or mistakes.  And it can be something as simple as that first slice into a freshly-baked cake or the start of a new art project or a new job.
One of my absolute favorite "beginnings" involves my cell phone.  You know how when you buy it, it comes with that clear plastic protector that you can remove once you purchase it?  Oh my gosh!  I LOVE those things!!!  Bruce once made the mistake of removing mine for me, and I was heartbroken.  Seriously!  I had been robbed of the preciousness of the beginning of my relationship with my cell phone.   
Over these last several months, I have been experiencing and enjoying lots of beginnings around me:
Beginning a new job
Bruce beginning his role as an associate pastor
A friend beginning a romantic relationship
My brother beginning his role as a daddy for the first time
College grads beginning their lives in the real world
Lives changed through salvation decisions 
All fresh.  All new.  All full of promise.  All full of so much potential.  No blemishes or mistakes. 
Some simple.  Some more involved.  But all are precious. 

14 DAYS OF THANKS - Day 11


Notice that I did not say "a good cup of coffee."  The coffee itself has to be good.  (I’m a bit of a coffee snob).  To me, a cup of really good coffee is basically


There are few things that can compete against the aroma, the taste, the warmth of it.  Even the routine of making coffee and pouring just enough half-and-half into it until it turns that perfect shade of beige – not too dark and not too light.  Mmmm!  It’s like drinking a cup of love. 

Drink up, my friends!

Sunday, November 14

14 DAYS OF THANKS - Day 12


Last night, we had a bonfire for some of the college peeps and a few friends. The air was cold, the fire was hot (like melt-your-face hot at times, ha ha!), the night sky was full of stars... And the only thing that made it better was having a chance to have a great chat with one of the college girls there. Don't you just love it when that happens?! I do. I love it when we get past the surface talking points and get to the nitty-gritty stuff. It's almost like there's something magical in sharing personal moments like that with another person. It's giving and receiving on a whole different level, and it changes the relationship for the better. LOVE IT!!

14 DAYS OF THANKS - Day 13


I am not a very touchy-feely person - at all.  Never have been.  But there's just something about a good hug that I love.  They can be so warm, so comforting, so loving.  Granted, from the wrong person, hugs can be downright creepy, but from the right person, hugs are sometimes EXACTLY what I need.  It takes a lot of breaking down personal barriers to give someone a hug, and even to receive one.  Maybe that's why I like them.  Or maybe it's that, for those few seconds, I feel united in body and spirit with another person - a rarity in a world that is so focused on me-me-me.  Maybe it's lots of things.  In any case, I feel like hugs are little touches from God, little reminders that we are not alone, that we are loved just the way we are.  And who wouldn't want that?

Friday, November 12

14 DAYS OF THANKS - Day 14

Today is exactly two weeks until Thanksgiving (Never mind that I have no idea where this week went, let alone this year). I thought I would challenge myself to a little something… Each day for the next two weeks, I am going to blog about something for which I am thankful. I’ve never actually committed to a daily anything, so this could be a bit more work than I am anticipating, but we’ll see how it goes.

DISCLAIMER: I don’t want my “thankful for’s” to be the churchy or cookie answers – you know the ones that everyone gives you when you ask them. So, for the record, and to get them out of the way, let me tell you now that I am thankful for my God, my salvation, my family, and my friends. I hope all of you are too. :)

Bruce eating a frozen banana at the fair.
Just look at that McConaughey-esque mane!

Now, you might be saying, “Becky, that is a cookie answer if I ever did hear one.” But I’m gonna have to disagree. Unfortunately, I know of LOTS of women who would never say they are thankful for their spouse. Sad, I know, but true just the same. So yeah, I am very thankful for Bruce. In January, we will have been married 13 years, and we’ve shared so many adventures through those years. Sometimes they’ve been the scary, sad, shadow-of-death kind of adventures, but mostly they’ve been the hugs-and-kisses, this-is-amazing, laugh-till-something-comes-out-of-your nose adventures. And that’s just the day-to-day stuff that just about anyone can see when they look at us.

But then there’s the stuff that is just for the two of us – the moments of communicating without speaking, the looks that say “I love you” or “I’m proud that you are my wife,” the way he “puts his foot down” when I need him to, the little touches that remind me that, even though the outside world sometimes requires more of his time than I’d like, he’s there for me.

And in a world where the bond of marriage is treated so frivolously, I recognize that my relationship with Bruce is truly a miraculous thing. And that’s why I am thankful.

Wednesday, November 10

Well hi!

Obviously, a little over 2 months ago, I decided to take a hiatus from blogging for an undetermined amount of time.  Recently though, Bruce has begun "pestering" me to get back into it, so here I am.  I wonder if you've missed me...

I wish I could tell you that in my absence, I've been doing something amazing and exciting and world-changing.  I wish I could tell you that, but I can't. 

I've just been living life, I guess you'd say.

Adjusting to being an associate pastor's wife is not as easy as I'd thought!  But I am definitely learning things.  There have been many moments when Bruce and I have wanted to go back to being just the college pastor and wife, and we do see that happening again for us.  But right now, God has chosen Bruce to be an Associate Pastor for a while.  So we are just gleaning as much as we can.  Stretching and growing.  And seeking His guidance.

The college peeps continue to be a huge blessing.  It always strikes me how different each semester is and how God surprises us with things.  Decisions to re-connect with God, lessons taught and learned, grad school decisions, break-ups and new couplings, new friends...  These students are an absolute treasure!  We've been keeping in touch with and even seeing some of the students who have already graduated.  It's an interesting thing, seeing them "feel" their way through the world. My heart is full. 

I have become absolutely ADDICTED to Angry Birds.  It's this wonderful slingshot game on my Droid where you fling different birds at evil pigs.  Sounds ridiculous, I know.  But I LOVE IT! 

A few weeks ago, I found out that I have chronic fatigue syndrome.  It's no fun.  I'm almost always tired, and have other symptoms like joint pain and such.  Couldn't make it to work some days.  Didn't feel like trying other days.  Didn't want to talk to anyone or see anyone.  I was feeling really depressed and sorry for myself, and it was a dark and ugly time.  But Bruce sternly but lovingly reminded me that God calls us in spite of ourselves, and in spite of any thorns in our sides.  In a recent sermon, he also reminded me that not only am I to serve God, I am to WORSHIP Him by serving - and that means through my ailments!  Hmm.  Good word, babe!

Fall is finally here, and it is glorious!  There is something cathartic to me about watching the world around me pass away in beauty.  Autumn makes me think of 2 Corinthians 5:17 - This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!  God's promises are overwhelmingly beautiful.

I guess that's it for now.  Hmm.  Feels good to be back in the blogger world.  I will be back in touch soon.  :)