Thursday, May 31, 2012

17 more days

Sometimes you don't realize how much someone means to you until it's time for you to part.
And it's one thing if you part for a little while, maybe even a couple of years as was the case when we moved to England and then moved back, but it's quite a different story when you move away for good.

The Jaques family has been a solid presence in our lives, and in the lives of many at our church, and they will be missed more than they know.

Mike, Liz, Maddie, and Luke are some of our best friends. We have a lot in common, and our families have done so much together.

We served together in AWANA
They've taught our children in the children's ministry at VLC (our church)
We have studied God's Word together
We've gone to the beach together, swam in our pool at pool parties, gone to each others' kids sporting events
Our girls dance together at IHS
We have had countless girls' nights out
Coffee talks
We've shared meals together
Went for ice cream together
Celebrated birthdays together
We've shopped together (even our husbands did their Christmas shopping together and bought us matching turtlenecks and vests) Oh yes they did!
We've laughed together
Cried together
And just did life together.

Life in these parts will just not be the same without them.
We trust God has a great plan for them and the people they will meet, work with, and serve the Lord with have no idea how blessed they are about to be.

Jaques family, we only have 17 more days with you, and Mike, even less with you as you have started your journey a little sooner in order to provide for your family.

It caught me off guard as I started to cry with Liz yesterday when I least expected it.
It hadn't felt like a reality to me until that day when the lump in my throat formed, and the tears came and I scrambled to find more moments together in the scant days ahead.

But as the words of Jeremiah 29:11-12 go:
"For I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you." 

They are such words of comfort for each one of us that know Him. 
Thank you, Jesus, for friendship, for life, for change, and for your goodness.

Mike and Liz,
You'll need to call upon Jesus all the more in these coming days and the days beyond that as you figure out where God wants you to serve, whom He wants you to befriend, which ministries He wants you to serve in, which home you'll eventually buy, and which people, even strangers, He'll have you reach out to. 

Be bold for Him, trust Him, and know that everyone here will be lifting you up in prayer, thinking of you, missing you, and knowing full well that you are fulfilling His destiny in the way only you and your family can.

We love you so much!
Carol, for the Busse Seven

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

a facelift

These fellas showed up and it made my day!
 They tugged and pulled and got the cover off.
Here is the beauty that is created throughout the winter.
 They siphon all of the water out...
and save it in these here containers.
 Ah yes, the mudge sludge.
 When it's all emptied out, they take down the old liner like it's wallpaper.
I guess that's what it is essentially.
And they start to level out the sand beneath the cover.

How gross are those walls? We have so much iron in the ground to contend with.
 They pulled the new liner out and it looked like one big, giant tablecloth.
They had that entire job done from start to finish in about 4 hours.
Mellie, Jillian, and Maddie felt like walking on sunshine.
I can only surmise that they were imagining themselves swimming in the "new" pool someday soon.
I would have spanked their bottoms if I had caught them. Ha!
We have been in the pool 3 or 4 times already since we got a new facelift and I look forward to many more bright swim days to come.

Monday, May 21, 2012

a travelin'...

Shawn's heading out to Mexico for a few days. I like it when he's home. I don't love it when he finds out so last minute and subsequently I do, too. He's at work today, gets to play some ball tonight with the softball team at church. It's one of the things he loves to do. I'm glad he doesn't have to miss it in order to travel today. He'll be leaving first thing tomorrow morning and will get home Thursday afternoon. Overall it's not too long, but I love it when we're together.

Go black & gold!

Happy Monday. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

One Blue-Eyed Kid

Braaten Noelle has a penchant for photography and taking beautiful photos.
My friend, Amy, who took this photo, also does. She's a pro.
Amy is willing to take Braaten under her wing and show her the ropes and that excites my girl. It excites me, too.

Here are some of the photos Braaten has taken over the course of this past year.
I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.
Melanie Grace on the beach at Edisto Island, SC.

      I shot this one. Eh, it's ok. :-)

 I love her ideas for photos.

 Yes, my sweet, true love does wait. And how blessed
you will be to wait for your husband! Only he deserves you.
Be patient. God has the perfect one set aside just for you.

Braaten, I am truly proud of you and all you put into learning 
about photography. It blesses me and those that see what you can do.
Continue to learn, and grow, and the Lord will soar you to great heights for Him.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

brace yourself, pet peeves, and other updates

I think braces are pretty.
 I'm not sure I have always thought that, but they sure look great on my kids. 
Austin (16) and Braaten (14) just had them put on last week, on May 2nd to be exact! And you might be wondering how 1 family puts 2 kids in braces AT THE SAME TIME!! I am wondering that, too, except a payment plan with no extra fees, that extends over a 3 year period plus the health savings plan that my husband has through work is what has made it possible. God has provided and we are ever thankful.

It is estimated that they will have to wear them for 12 - 14 months. Back in the day, didn't people wear them for like 3 to 4 years? Ahhh, technology.

 You see that wad?
Yeah, it's not a wad of cash, but a wad of very expensive Kinesio-tape that I purchased with the intent of using on patients that might need to be taped.
My postal carrier left it on the porch, and my sweet pooch decided that he needed to have whatever it was that was in the package. It didn't matter that it wasn't food, or something exciting, he just had to have it. And boy did he make a mess of it!
I very carefully went through the entire thing and cut it into strips that still had the adhesive on with the protective paper over it. I think I was able to save 80% of it. Whew!

 Here's the culprit!! 
Yes, he's cute, I know.

 Some mornings I eat Froot Loops because they are ever so yummy
and I love my morning coffee. I thought you needed this update.

We have 2 new batches of kittens. There are 4 cuties in this litter. I have no pictures
 available of litter number 2, but I will soon.

Braaten shot this yesterday.

 Last year, in July, my sweet husband let me buy this camera. Mind you 
it is at least a couple of Christmases and birthdays worth of presents for me.
Braaten has had an interest in photography for a few years now, and 
the photos she takes are A*MA*ZING! Look out for a blog post that 
has her work in it coming this week.

Random things I love...
**Days off at home allowing me to cook and get some projects done.
Today happens to be one of them. I'll be running boys to baseball a little 
later, but that's ok.

**Having all of my kids under one roof after we've been apart. 
Melanie went on a wonderful vacation with friends and returned home last night.

**Helping people feel better physically when they come into my office.
And getting adjusted by my own chiropractor. She rocks!

**Finishing half marathons after months and months of training.
A post about that is coming...

**Homemade Italian Sauce with Meatballs.
My mother taught me well.

**Sunny days.

**Planting flowers all around the house.

**When school is almost done for the year and summer vacation.

**New friendships and old ones that are always there for me.
I love my friends!

**Newly created scrapbook pages.

**Freshly polished toenails.
There's no photo of that, thankyouverymuch. :)

  OK, so that's the post of the day.  I shall try once again to be more regular.
Thanks, Connie, for inspiring me. :-)