Friday, August 31, 2007

Top Ten Day

Today was a banner day at the beach. We had so much fun all day long. I'm talking one of the best days I have ever spent at the beach. And I have spent countless days at the beach in my life. We rested. We played. We ate. We rested some more. We played some more. And we ate even more. The best part was that all of the jellyfish were gone. We never saw even one. This after seeing dozens every trip to the ocean this week. I think the Lord must have summoned them all to the deep, just for us.

: >)

And the water was perfectly clear. Like, bath water clear. We spent lots of time just riding the easy waves. I grew up loving being in the ocean. And I used to dream of the days when I would sit out on the waves with my kids. And today was one of those days. I will never forget it.

We ate dinner at a fun restaurant called Peg Let Pete's. I forgot to take my camera to Pete's...I wish I would is a fun place.

Here are my loves today on the shore...

I must confess there were not pointing at anything in particular in the ocean. They were posing for the pic. Cute? Possibly. Scary? Maybe. Handy for the picture-taking dad? Absolutely.

Have a great to you soon...


Thursday, August 30, 2007

At the Beach

Hey, everybody! I hope you are having a good week. We are having a great time at the beach. Lots of sun, lots of water, lots of sleep, lots of good food.

As soon as we got here on Monday, we headed straight for the sand. We found lots of shells.

We also found lots of jellyfish.

There are lots of jellyfish here right now, so our wave-riding is a little limited. But we are having fun anyway.

Levi is chillin' and kickin' back in the surf here...

Our friends Nirva and Seth Ready came down and joined us. They sing on the praise team with us. They are amazing singers, and amazing people.

We love the Ready's!

I did a stupid thing and broke my toe in the pool on Monday night. The first night here! I am such a goober. I am hobbling around like an old man. No comments, please.

It's feeling better every day, and I am still having so much fun with my sweet family. I will post more later. Have a great day!


Friday, August 24, 2007

Living Proof Live Providence, Rhode Island

We are having an awesome time in Rhode Island! I will write more when we are home.

Thanks to Rich Kalonick for the great pics...

Providence, RI

I have been so excited about this weekend for a long time. I am in Providence, Rhode Island for a Living Proof Live weekend. The last Living Proof Live weekend was back in May (remember - in the great town of Boone, NC). It has been too long to wait for another one. Our Living Proof Live team is like family, and I have missed everyone. So I am glad it is finally here.

And in an effort to keep a grateful heart, I am not going to mention the fact that construction has been going on in the rooms directly above me in this hotel, since 6:30am (5:30am to my central-time system). Literally drills and hammers. Constantly.

No, I will not mention that. Instead, I will mention that this is my favorite hotel chain in the world. And I get almost giddy when I know I am going to be staying in one. So I am willing to forgive them this time. Especially since I am staying in the "new wing," which just opened two days ago. I don't think I have ever stayed in a hotel room where no one has ever stayed. It's shiny and clean.

I can't wait to worship tonight. And I can't wait to hear the teaching. The teacher at these things is pretty good. : >) I don't know why I get to do this with my life. I know I don't deserve it. But I am so thankful, humbled and honored. And the privilege of serving these ladies (and a few brave men) in worship is not lost on me.

And then...I get home on Saturday night...and then...I go to church on Sunday...and then...we go to THE BEACH on Monday! Yessssssssssssss. Cue Napoleon Dynamite dance in new shiny and clean hotel.

We are taking our summer vacation a little late this year. The kids don't start school until the day after Labor Day. I can't wait to be there. I love the beach.

I hope you have a great weekend, too!


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Party Pics I am shameless. But I have some pics of Lily Kate's party to post.

Here is the whole fam...

And here is the birthday girl...soaking in the joy of everything being all about her for a day...

Every present...a new joy...

Notice I'm not mentioning the crown. It's because it's an everyday accessory...

All the boys could do was watch in amazement...

But they were excited for their sis...

Lily Kate and her girlfriends had a great time. It was her first slumber party. Easy on the slumber. Heavy on the party...

And what birthday is complete without some Carolina blue hair??

Friday, August 17, 2007

High School Musical 2

Hey everybody!

So, tonight was the big night. High School Musical 2. I "watched" it with Lily Kate and 5 of her friends, over here for her 7th birthday slumber party (her birthday is Tuesday). I am currently on patrol, making sure these girls (and a precocious little brother) go to sleep with a minimal amount of drama. Yeah, right.

I think I am the only one who watched the movie from begnning to end. A couple of the kids stayed pretty engaged through most of it. But by the end, it was just Angela and me, tearing up at the big "we all love each other and the world rocks" musical number at the end. We are such cheeseballs.

Did you watch it? Did you like it?

It has been a nice week. Wait a minute...have we talked about last weekend? About the Women of Faith conference in Atlanta? About how I got to sing a little diddy with Sandi Patty? About how I could have just swallowed my tongue I was so beside myself? Well, yeah...that.

It was an awesome weekend. And a great honor to sing on the same platform as someone like her. I am very grateful for that moment in time!

It was an end to a brutally intense travel schedule for the summer. By the end of the day last Friday, I had totally lost my voice. I woke up the next morning and had nothing left. Nothing. Well, nothing but dangerously hoarse low noises. I was supposed to sing the next day (Sunday) at FBC Woodstock, GA (an awesome church where I have many friends). And I had to do the unthinkable - I had to cancel my day there. I was so stressed out, because I didn't want to cancel. But I know my voice well, and I knew that it was not going to bounce back quickly. So I had to call them and tell them I couldn't do it. Arghhhh.

So, although I hated to cancel, I knew it was the right thing to do. I will go back there sometime soon.

I have had this whole week to rest my voice, and it has been wonderful. Nothing but grocery store runs, football and cheerleading practice, grilling out, some office work...and, oh yeah, High School Musical with six 7-year-olds.

Awesome week indeed!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Estes Park, CO

Hey everybody. I am in NW Arkansas this afternoon. We just finished leading worship at a women's conference here, and are singing at FBC Bentonville, AR in the morning.

My friend just sent me these pics from my short time at Estes Park, CO this past week. I got to sing on a night with some great artists...

Natalie Grant...

Brian Littrell...he wants it that way (a little Backstreet Boys humor)...

and Jamie Jamgochian (pictured here with Joy Fletcher, a sweet friend who works for GMA).

I also got to say hey to Sue C. Smith...

...who is a great friend and great songwriter. Sue and I have co-written a bunch of songs, like Aliver Forever Amen, My Passion, and This Is Our God. AND, Sue let me borrow her iron Wednesday afternoon...she drove back to the camp from town just to bring it to me. Thanks, Sue!

It was a good trip, but the tight schedule was tough. The altitude killed my voice. And I couldn't breathe very well. This is me getting some oxygen before I sang in the evening concert...

I can't even tell you how much better I felt after I had that oxygen. I almost went on stage with a big oxygen tank. Not really.

Thanks for all of the info about astro pops. I had no idea I could find out so much info about random old candy online. So sad they are gone forever.

Hope you all are having a good weekend. Talk to you soon!


Thursday, August 2, 2007

Random Post

Hey, friends. Hope you are doing well today. I just got home from Estes Park, CO, and am heading to Bentonville, AR in the morning for a women's conference and a Sunday morning church concert. I am not used to such a quick turnaround. But it has been a fun few hours at home. We spent most of the night at the football field. Jack started football this week. He LOVES it. And the other two love going to the practices...and walking around, playing, and thinking they own the place.

Here are some random things I have been wanting to write about...

1. Where did all the diving boards go? I miss having diving boards at swimming pools. I know that it is because of insurance and safety reasons that most public pools don't have them anymore. When I was a kid, our local pool (in BOONE, NC) had a separate deep pool (11 ft.), with 3 diving boards - low, medium and high. It was awesome. And I feel sure the world is missing my amazing cannonball.

2. Levi has been saying the sweetest thing. We have often talked about the girls having "girl time" when mom and Lily Kate go off somewhere together, and us having "boy time" when the two boys and I go somewhere. Well, Levi calls it "boyish time." Makes me grin every time I hear him say it. Boyish time. Too much.

3. Does anybody remember Astro Pops? They are cone-shaped suckers on a stick...three colors (green, red and yellow), with a small rim of wax on the bottom. If anybody sees them somewhere, please let me know. I can't find them anymore. I used to be able to find them at random Cracker Barrels, but not so much anymore.

4. This is crazy...but...Lily Kate's birthday party falls on the night of the premiere of "High School Musical 2" on the Disney Channel. So, we are getting cable for 1 month, just so she and her friends can watch it for her birthday. The things we do for love.

5. Angela came into the room a minute ago to tell me she had, indeed made an appearance in the pictures on the last post. She is in the background of the one of the bride and groom. Click on it and you will see her. She has given this picture of her her blessing. You know, being that it's 20 feet away and blurry. : >)

6. I know fast food is bad for you. But I gotta say that I am currently a big fan of the Hardees thickburger. Try it out. it will be ministry to you. I want one RIGHT NOW.

7. One of my very best friends in the whole world is Denver Bierman. We have been friends for years. You may know him because of his awesome band - Denver and the Mile High Orchestra. Check them out. They are crazy good. Denver sometimes (rarely) comes out and sings on my praise team. It doesn't happen often, because he is usually busy with his band. Well, he is going to be on my team in Arkansas this weekend, and I am so glad. I can't wait to hang out and worship Jesus with my buddy.

7. Last random thing to tell you record, "Found" was number 1 on the inspo charts last week! It is the 2nd time it has been number 1 on that chart. I know that doesn't really mean anything, but it great encouragement to us. Thanks to all of you who have bought it. I am so grateful to serve Jesus in this generation with all of you!

Have a great weekend...


Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Fun Family Weekend

Another wonderful and beautiful niece of mine was married this past weekend. It was an awesome weekend hanging out with family and celebrating these two great kids getting married. Here are some pics...

My nephew Scott (the bride's brother) and Lily Kate (flower girl of your dreams):

Lily Kate and some new friends she met over the weekend, overwrought with the joy that IS the chocolate fountain:

My two sisters, Vickie and Kathy (mother of the bride):

My brother David and sister-in-law Kathy (yes, we have two Kathy's):

My dad and sister (mother of the bride):

All of my beautiful nieces and my sweet daughter:

My nephew Sam and niece Betsy:

The beautiful bride, Ashley, and her new husband Daniel:

Handsome firstborn:

Handsome lastborn:

And, finally, the beautiful flower girl (be still my heart):

MY beautiful bride was there, of course, and was show-stoppingly beautiful. But she vetoed all of the pictures of her. I may be slow, but I am not I will not post them. Just take my word for it...she is always a beauty.