Saturday, January 31, 2009

Don't you just love these faces?

My favorite coffee mug to drink out of:
My second favorite coffee mug:
But these are too distracting to drink out of when I am doing my bible study--it's hard to concentrate with those faces staring at you. So my favorite 'serious' coffee mug is this:

I am trying to see how many posts I can make today. I think this is a personal record.

Snow Days

Despite the ice, the kids were able to find a 'safe' place to sled away from all the cracking branches.

How fun is this? A scooter like snowboard!

Wet, red-faced and ready for hot chocolate!

Thoughts from this week

  • We have went through 100 packets of hot chocolate this week.
  • I have dried ten loads of wet snow clothes
  • Jeremiah wore his 'jamamas' (pajamas) under his snow suit along with his 'treboggan' (tobaggan).
  • Having my husband around this week was AWESOME. Next week will be back to reality.
  • It's really hard to potty train your dog when the snow is taller than he is.
  • Listening to branches crack and fall through the night on Tuesday was scary
  • Being in all week has given me cabin fever--I enjoyed getting out for a change today!
  • I am pretty sure that buying a generator is in our near future
  • Even though the ice has destroyed so many trees (which is TERRIBLE) it has been a beautiful sight to see the ice glistening on the trees
  • it is going to take a really long time to clean up the mess from this ice storm
  • we've enjoyed having our cousins here during the ice storm!

Do You See Your Calling

Read this in Oswald Chambers, 'My Upmost for His Highest' this morning:

...Paul did not say that he separated himself, but "when it pleased God, who separated me..." (Galatians 1:15). Paul was not overly interested in his own character. And as long as our eyes are focused on our own personal holiness, we will never even get close to the full reality of redemption. Christian workers fail because they place their desire for their own holiness over their desire to know God. "Don't ask me to be confronted with the strong reality of redemption on behalf of the filth of human life surrounding me today; what I want is anything God can do for me to make me more desirable in my own eyes." To talk that way is a sign that the reality of the gospel of God has not begun to touch me. there is no reckless abandon to God in that. God cannot deliver me while my interest is merely in my own character. Paul was not conscious of himself. He was recklessly abandoned, totally surrendered and separated by God for one purpose--TO PROCLAIM THE GOSPEL OF GOD (see Romans 9:3).

Just thinking about this in terms of parenting today. Eric and I are pouring our whole selves right now into parenting our children. We want them to pursue holy lives. However, do we get so caught up in wanting our children to be holy and pursue holiness for the sake of holiness OR are we discipling our children with the goal that they will have a burning passion bo proclaim the gospel of God? What is my intention? Do I want my children to grow up good and moral so that I can get a pat on the back or do I want them to be passionately proclaiming Jesus as their Savior because of my love for the Savior myself?

So, anyway, not even sure I am making sense today--I know it makes sense in my head :). These are the ramblings and thoughts I am chewing on today. Just my own goals and intentions and how they can so often be selfish and 'all about me' and not about Jesus. Just seeing how big my own sin is and how thankful I am that Jesus died for me and took away my sin so that I could have life!

Friday, January 30, 2009


Community is a big buzz words in Christian circles these days. I hear over and over the phrase 'we need to be doing life with other believers'. And it is true. We DO need to be in community and living life together, not independently. We DO need to take down the walls and be real with each other. The first church in Acts did this: "...All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people..." Acts 2:44-47

No doubt, community is important and vital to our walk with the Lord. However, when it takes precedence over our personal relationship with the Lord, it is out of place. Our first priority is supposed to be to 'Love the Lord our God with all of our heart, mind, soul and strength.' Our second priority is to 'Love others as ourselves.' I think it is easy to start putting the second priority in front of the first one because it is a tangible relationship. It is easier to engage with a real, live person. You get immediate feedback. You get results. On the contrary, spending time with God can be difficult because often times you don't 'feel' reciprocation in the relationship. It is not always a 'feel good' kind of thing.

I think when the latest way to 'do' Christianity better, such as the latest 'Be in Community' concept hits Christian circles, everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon. Suddenly we think we have found the 'answer'. But I think we have to be careful. Pretty soon our walk with the Lord can be all about hanging out with this person, and spending time with that person. It can become all about ministering to this person and ministering to that person. It can become all about hanging out with our neighbors because we need to be building 'community'. It can become all about helping this person and helping that person. And suddenly, without realizing it at all, we've made our walk with the Lord shift to 'doing, doing, doing' rather than just 'being'. Suddenly, we are worn out and burnt out because of all of our 'doing'! Suddenly, unintentionally, we've made ourselves the 'Savior' in other people's lives rather than pointing them to the one and only Savior--JESUS.

Please don't get me wrong. I am NOT trying to bash the whole mindset of living in community or serving our community. Living in community with other believers is SO important and vital to our walk with the Lord. Serving our community and other believers is SO important because God tells us to be the hands and feet of Christ. But it is only a means to an end. It's sole purpose is to point us and others to Christ. Period. Community and Service is not THE WAY. And it should NEVER take the place of our relationship with our Father. Our relationship with our Father should always always always come first. Whom we go to first and foremost with our problems, our anxieties and our fears should always be our Father. Whom we rely on first and foremost in all circumstances should be our Father. AND when we are discipling younger believers, we should be constantly in prayer about making sure we are pointing them to the Lord and not to ourselves. Our relationship with them is not what gives them wings to fly and the ability to live their lives' for Christ. It is not us! Again, God wants to work through us to point them to the one and only Savior--Jesus. We are not ever to point them to us! If they began to put their relationship with their discipler before God in their life then we are not discipling them correctly!

We would be wise to ask ourselves often:

  • When I feel lonely and empty am I running first to others rather than to the Lord?

  • Am I truly putting the Lord first in my life?

  • If I am currently discipling someone, is my goal to point them to Christ? Have they begun to rely on my relationship too much? Have I began enjoying way too much the fact that someone else 'needs' me and comes to me when they are going through difficulty? When someone comes to me for counsel or advice is my main goal to point them to Christ?

  • Am I serving others out of the right motives?

Okay, I am off the soapbox now :) .

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Our family Christmas

Our annual picture on the steps before running down to see what Santa brought:

Allright! A ripstick!

Star Wars Legos for our lego crazed family!

Here they are after opening up little dog gifts and discovering they are getting a dog. Notice that Wes doesn't look too sure about this! They all went running to find where the dog was hiding except him--he ran up into his room and locked the door and climbed on his bunkbed!
Our ferocious dog, Murray.
The End.

Christmas with the Grogan's

So, I know this happened about a month ago, but it takes me about that long to post something--so on my timeline I suppose it's right on time!

Here are the grandkids with Gigi and Mi:

(notice uncooperative Owen in the upper right side)

Next, a pic with Meme and Dadoo:

and let's not forget the kid's table--
Wow, Meme sure can decorate a table!
Sweet Polly!

Aunt Heat and Uncle T - love this picture!

And here is my ONLY pic from when Uncle Adam and Aunt Kelle came into town because my camera died!
and it was another great Grogan Christmas!
The End.
So, I can't get this blogger to post the correct pictures by the words but I'm tired of fooling with it!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Video for National Sales Meeting 2009

Eric had to send in a video for his company's national sales meeting--thought I would share it with you!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

I Saw What I Saw

I've posted this video before but I think I need to view it at least once a week. It always gets my attention.

'...your courage asks me what I'm afraid of...your courage asks me what I'm made of..' Sara Groves

Favorite Quote of the Week

'...The greatest difficulty spiritually is to concentrate on God, and His blessings are what make it so difficult. Troubles almost always make us look to God, but His blessings tend to divert our attention elsewhere...'
'Look to Me and be saved...' Isaiah 45:22

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Sometimes training is hard.

Today I can't seem to get motivated to get our homeschool room organized...this video reminds me sometimes you just have to spur yourself on and push forward in doing something even when you don't feel like it.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

My Homeboy

Wes is smack dab in the middle of our fab five. Being the 'middle-middle' child (wedged between two other 'middles') can be a hard spot. It is a spot that can be easily overlooked and forgotten, especially when this middle-middle child is 'on the surface' seemingly quiet. But, just as you don't always instantly see what makes a picture art-worthy and you have to study it for a little while to see what makes it truly a treasure, so it goes with our Wes. He may seem shy and quiet, but you just have to dig a bit beneath the surface to see what is going on in there. And taking the time to do so always yields treasure.

Some things that make Wes so different from the rest of our children is the fact that he is our 'homeboy'. He loves to be at home and dragging him on an errand consists of just that--dragging. We can be out together as a family doing something completely exciting, and he will inevitably come up to me and ask, 'can we leave now?'

He is our artist, sitting at his desk drawing for hours. He is our builder, creating and building ships out of his legos for hours. Playing by himself is no problem and often he prefers this. He is also quite orderly. He loves to clean his room and folding his clothes is his favorite chore (seriously. I'm not kidding). Don't get me wrong. He also has a wild streak, and can get pretty crazy and out of control at times. His theme song is 'Wild, Wild West' which we have renamed 'Wild, Wild Wes.'

I also enjoy the fact that he is the one child people tell me looks like me :) .

All of these things make Wes who he is. However, the one thing that I love most about him is his unassuming, dry wit. Often when Wes chooses to talk about something, it has been thought upon and pondered; thus, it comes across unusually witty and is said in just enough of a 'dry way' to make it extra funny. He has a unique mix of being analytical and methodical, yet also a creative 'outside the box' streak. This results in some very thought out, bizarre statements. A few years ago we began calling many of these statements and thoughts 'Wes-isms'.
Here are a couple of recent Wes-isms:
the other night at the dinner table, Eric asked the question, 'What is the one job you consider, yucky, one that you would never want to have?' Our two eldest piped up first, always ready with their reply: Sophie said she would not want to be a trashman. Joshua said he did not enjoy, presently, picking up our dog's poop. Four year old Jeremiah piped in with his answer. As usual, he didn't really make any sense--he just wanted to say something. I said I would not enjoy being a plumber. Eric said he would not like to have to be the one to scrape dead animals off of the road.
'So, Wes, what job would you not want to ever have?'
'Well, I would say that I would definitely not want to be the coach of the Kentucky Wildcats.'

................Bah-da-bing. Bah-da-bung.....................

The other night, as I was tucking Wes in, he said:
'Mom, remember how when we were arguing over who got to be the first ones in the car and you said 'whoever is first will be last and whoever is last will be first'?
'Yes, Wes, I remember.'
'Remember how Sophie and Joshua then kept arguing over who got to be last?
'Yes, Wes, I remember.'
'Well, really they were arguing over who wanted to be first because you said 'whoever is first will be last and whoever is last will be first.'

........Yes, let that sink in for a moment. He is exactly right, you know.

Friday, January 9, 2009

John Piper - Mission Sending: America is Dying

I have been thinking upon this so much lately. Thinking about how I don't even know what it means to suffer. Thinking about how very 'soft' I am when it comes to suffering for the sake of the gospel.

Favorite Quote of the Week

This was my favorite quote I came across this week. Of course, it's by Oswald Chambers (as usual!):

'Once we get intimate with Jesus we are never lonely and we never lack for understanding or compassion. We can continually pour out our hearts to Him without beting perceived as overly emotional or pitiful. The Christain who is truly intimate with Jesus will never draw attention to himself but will only show the evidence of a life where Jesus is completely in control. This is the outcome of allowing Jesus to satisfy every area of life to its depth. The picture resulting from such a life is that of the strong, calm balance that our Lord gives to those who are intimate with Him.'
Oswald Chambers

I Get Down and He Lifts Me Up

I love this song so much. This is the song that spoke so very much to me during the extremely difficult mini marathon I ran last April, not long after my mom died. Here are the lyrics. I may have some of them wrong; I don't have the greatest ears for words in songs. (When I was little I thought 'Taking Care of Business' was 'Taking Care of Biscuits'.) Hope this song lifts you up today! Happy Friday!


Lavish me,
Lifes are wasted
Humbledness is left untasted
You can’t live your life to please yourself
That’s a tip from my mistake, exactly what it doesn’t say--
To win you have to come in last place. To live your life you’ve got to lose it, and all the losers get a crown.

I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down…

All I need is another day
where I can’t seem to get away
from the many things that drag me down.
I’m sure you’ve had a day like me
when nothing seems to set you free
from burdens you can’t carry all alone.
In your weakness He is stronger,
In your darkness He shines through,
when you’re crying He’s your comfort,
When you’re all alone, He’s carrying you.

I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,

I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
Everytime I’m down the Lord lifts me up

This valley is so deep, I can barely see the sun,
I cry out for mercy Lord and You lift me up again!

I get down, and He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down

I get down, and He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down, He lifts me up,
I get down

Everytime I’m down the Lord lifts me up, Yeah!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Christmas with the Fuquay's

Okay, this is such old news, but I had meant to post about this two weeks ago, before all of our drama. We had Christmas with all of my brothers and sister and their families here at our house this year. It was so relaxing and fun! And I loved having it here! All the kids (cousins) exchanged names and opened a gift. I loved the fact that they opened one present and also loved the fact that they were so happy just opening one gift! Another reminder of not overdoing and that less is truly more. All us girls exchanged ornaments via the Chinese Christmas exchange and all the guys did gag gifts. My brother Brian gets the prize for being the most creative:

My dad had sent a gift for all of us to open--pizza makers:

Here are all the girlies:

And here are all the kids--so many that we have to have two kid's tables!

Other pics: