Tuesday, July 30, 2013

John's Little Man 1st Birthday

I had every intention of giving John his very own birthday party for his big "1." But life happened & two separate parties didn't. I do plan to have Jax & John's birthday celebrations together for as long as I can from here on. We had a fantastic time & the boys are close enough in age to have the same interests. (John says, "If it's good enough for big brother, it's good enough for me!")

We did a "Little Man" theme for John's party. It's perfect for him because he already thinks he's so big. I joke with D, that he makes babies that look like little men. My boys both got too old looking when they're just a few months old. After about 6 months, their smocked outfits start looking ridiculous on them (much to D's joy). I don't know what it is about them!

I had to incorporate some burlap into John's party table. My friend Sis of Rain Lily Photography did a smash cake photo-session with John, so I had to include one of the pics from that!

As always, my friend Stacie came through with some delicious & amazing looking cakes & cookies!

Here D is leading in "Happy Birthday" for John. 

I made John's birthday shirt too. (Mostly because I took too long to decide on what I wanted & waited too long to order it.) It has "suspenders" that are on the front & cross in the back & a "1" on the front. 

Both boys got their own personalized chairs as a gift from their friend. They were a big hit!

John loved him some presents!

Being silly with our mustache cookies!

John didn't make it home awake. (For those who may not know...that's all of 3 blocks!) He was completely partied out. That's party success in my book!!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

HeMan/Jax is Four!

Last weekend was Jax's much anticipated (basically b/c he wanted his Castle Gray-skull cake) HeMan birthday party.

I made him a party shirt to wear & at times he accessorized with part of his HeMan costume that Mrs. Sherre made him.

This party was super low-key with just a few small snacks in addition to the expected cake & cookies from Southern Charm Cakery.

When I ordered the cake & cookies from my friend Stacie, I told her that her stuff was pretty much the main attraction of the party. She did NOT disappoint!! 

This cake has sentimental value to Dustie. His Meme was a cake baker/decorator & she made him a Castle Gray-skull cake for one of his little birthdays. I gave Stacie a picture for inspiration. She blew us away with her talent.

She delivered amazing looking goodies that tasted equally amazing!

We had a couple of activities they could do: design a sword or princess wand.

They also played on our church's great playground.

Jax got way too many goodies. We are so blessed!

The party favor was a bubble sword so every kid could be a HeMan or SheRa.

We had a really great day of fun & fellowship with our family & some of our closest friends. I'm incredibly thankful for the people God has put in our lives.

Monday, July 22, 2013

No Other Gods-Leah & Rachel

I know I still need to post the other reasons we turn to idols. I also have a couple of birthday party extravaganza posts I want to get up. But my Bible Study today rocked my world & I've got to share!

This week's study in No Other Gods (Kelly Minter) is on The Problem With Idols. Yesterday we focused on Leah. Today we focused on Rachel & how their two stories intertwine.

A quick run-down of the story:
Jacob finds a girl he wants to marry named Rachel. He tells her father that he will work for him for 7 years if he will let him marry Rachel. After Jacob works 7 years, Laban (Rachel's father) deceives Jacob & gives his other daughter Leah to marry him. Jacob is upset & ends up working 7 more years for Laban so that he can marry Rachel too.
Jacob doesn't hide the fact that Rachel is his fave. So Leah is just horribly sad. She wants to be loved by Jacob so badly. Leah viewed her children as a tool to get love from her husband. With each child she has, she hopes that will get her some kind of love or recognition with her husband. You can see her desperation growing verse by verse. With her first son (Reuben) she hopes for love. With her second son (Levi) she hopes for attachment. With her third son (Zebulun) she just hopes to get treated with respect. Leah gets so desperate that she ends up trading mandrakes for a night with her own husband.

As sad as that is...we look at Rachel today who is actually jealous of Leah. Rachel's jealousy & desperation comes from the fact that she can't have children. Like Leah who was willing to settle for a "paid" night with Jacob, Rachel was willing to settle for a child through her maidservant.
"Both women were hanging on to mere threads; both were willing to hold out for crumbs."

"Leah was not loved, Rachel was disgraced. Both believed that their answer lay with someone other than God. For Leah, it was the love of Jacob. For Rachel, it was having children. The difference between the two was that Rachel finally got everything she had wanted."

"Rachel had the exclusive love of her husband, and now she had the firstborn son she always wanted..."
But guess what?! Rachel still isn't happy or satisfied. Later in Gen. 31:32-35 Rachel is still into idols! (She steals them & hides them in her tent.)
"Apparently being beautiful, loved, & physically fruitful is not enough...the son that Rachel always longed for didn't quite fill the void in her life. Somehow her striking beauty and the focused love of her husband didn't do it. She had it all, and yet she still needed false gods."

"...it doesn't matter if you have it all and get everything your heart desires, or if you're left wanting and unloved. Neither works. The two women had vastly different circumstances, yet both were left hungry. Why? BECAUSE GOD WAS NOT THEIR ULTIMATE THING."

"..obedience is the precursor to experiencing God's satisfying presence and the richness of His blessings. This is not a formula but a path that manifests itself in a relationship that is honest and open between God and us. It functions supremely when we are looking solely to Him as Savior."

As always, God reinforces His message to me through many forms. I remember PreacherHubs saying in his sermon yesterday morning that, "Not only does Jesus want to be first, He doesn't even want there to be a second."

Then I read this quote today by Adrian Rogers, "Ask yourself, 'Is there something in my life that's hindering my walk with Christ?' Good things become bad things when they keep you from the best things."

Kelly says, "I have been there. I have found myself in both the shoes of Leah & Rachel: Leah's when I am miserable because I lack, and Rachel's when I am miserable in my fullness. The way out? Jesus Christ."

Jesus Christ has come so that you no longer have to grasp and strain at mere hints of what your heart desires. He has come "that [you] may have life, and have it to the full." John 10:10 (Kelly's paraphrase)

Tuesday, July 16, 2013


Woohoo for birthdays, celebrations, & fun family time!!

This weekend was a really great one. It began with us getting to see Jax who was gone waaaay too long on vacay without us! (I have one more picture blog of their trip to post.) 

Saturday night was the night of my family birthday dinner. 

My family has at least one birthday a month from June-January, so we do a LOT of celebrating. (& we all love cookie cake!)

My family is totally that family that celebrates every little thing that happens. Basically, we're always looking for a reason to celebrate!

D & Pops (his Dad) had revival services to lead at D's uncle's church in TX, so that's what we did Sunday. We made it a big family get-together for D's side of the family & we really enjoyed it. We got to visit with family we haven't seen in a long time, ate a big yummy family lunch after church, & see D's cousin's beautiful house he & his wife just built. I'm so mad at myself for not taking pictures! I'll have to wait for Aunt Teresa to post hers & I'll snag some.

The boys & I went back to Shreveport that afternoon to relax with my family & hang out in & around my brother's pool. It was a long, relaxing day!

I got way too many fun goodies for my birthday! D & the boys got me a laptop so I can blog & write on it. I love it of course!! My Brother & Sis-in-Love's gift goes with that-they gave me a gift card to get an external hard drive for the laptop so I can save all my picture files onto it. My parents & Mammaw (& a few people from my church family) gave me money for my birthday. That's always a great gift! :) & my Mom also bought me a bunch of things from my "wish list" to add to my "Big Birthday."

The only thing that could have made it better is if I had been able to see my church family too. 

I had a really great day. I LOVE TO CELEBRATE!!

** Friends who are in the area! Come join us for Jax & John's birthday party this Saturday!!! Let me know if you want to come & I'll give you the details!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

John-John's Birthday Fun

John has had quite a few birthday celebrations himself.
We had his family birthday dinner at my Parents'. (He's not old enough to know the joys of Chuck E. Cheese...thank goodness!)

We are singing Happy Birthday to him. 

Notice the slice missing BEFORE the party. I opened the cake to look at it & take a picture of it & John whined for a bite for 5 minutes. We finally decided that it was his birthday, it was ok that we didn't wait for everyone to get there. Ha! Sorry Mammaw!

John got a couple of presents. One was a fun elephant shape sorter that he LOVED!

This week we had dinner with the Bowers & Mrs. Sherre made John a super yummy cake to get into!

I think he liked it. :)

They also got him a great race track that does loops & flips with Little People & Cars. John had to play in the box while D put it together.

We are so blessed by our family & friends & this super cool one-year-old.