Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Amgen Tour of California

Well hello there bloggy friends!

Today in my small hometown of Merced we welcomed the 7 time Tour De France winner and cancer survivor Lance Armstrong to ride along our streets.
The Amgen Tour of California is happening right now and today was stage 4 of the race. What an expereince to see this awesome group of cyclists ride through our little town! It was quite an amazing experience to see that many people on bikes going quite fast and their cars following rapidly behind them! It was pretty funny that Melissa (my cousin) and I had to find out from Robert (my other cousin and her brother) what Lance was wearing so that we could identify him. I am grateful that he checked it out for us and am really excited that I got to pick him out of the large group of cyclists (although he was going pretty fast so my pictures are not all that great!).
There was a nice turnout for the event and I suspect that there will be an even greater turn out in Clovis where they will run the 5th stage of the race!

Here are a few pics from the morning. Enjoy!!!

My aunt Olivia, Melissa, and Me.

There was lots of chalk grafitti....pretty cool stuff!

Here are the guys....Lance Armstrong is in the front.

They were going so fast that they kicked up dust everywhere!

Here we are on our corner...that's Allison, Tyler, Chris, Tia, and Melissa

The sign promoting the event and a nice picture of 18th street!

Two cyclists (I need to find out who they are) warming up for the race.

Sign welcoming us to the Amgen Tour...

Who would have thought that Merced would be called Bike City USA?!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Thank you Mr. President!

I am so happy that I live in the great US of A....because I get this whole week off! Aren't I lucky?!!
This is the week known as President's Week here in Ca. and instead of getting Lincoln's Bday and President's Day off (2 consecutive 3 day weekends) we instead get a whole week off of work!
I can't believe that the end of the school year is quickly approaching. After this week I only have to work 7 more weeks and then get the week off for Easter. Then after that I only have to work 6 weeks and then get the whole summer off. I usually work summer school but not this year! I decided at the beginning of the year to have a little extra taken out of my salary each month so that I could have the whole 10 weeks off! I am so excited especially since I just found out that summer school this year is starting 1 week later and goes 1 week longer...that gives those working only 2-3 weeks off before the beginning of the new school year. I just realized that I needed more of an extended break for my emotional health! It was a good call.
This has been one of the most demanding and stressful school years since I started teaching 4 years ago. I have learned so many lessons through it though about waiting on the Lord and about being patient in the struggles. Many lessons about my character too. Who am I when life is moving along smoothly and who am I when the flames of life tend to get a bit hot? God is good and He is always into my growth.
I am thankful for many things and one this week is getting to rest!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Thank you Staci!

Ok...just have to give a great "Thank You" to my girl Staci over at Staci's Heart for awarding me this, my first ever blog award!
Staci girl, I've loved reading your blog and getting to know you through this crazy computer addiction!
I am going to pass on this award to my faithful reader and commenter Katie over at katiegfromtennessee, because she has been a faithful reader and encouraging sister in the Lord. I am a little short on the friend list so for now Miss Katie is going to be my only recipient.

Ps...Happy Valentines Day Bloggy Friends!!!!

Having trouble pasting the image....working on it Katie!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Happy Sunday and My God's Delight Book

Hi all....

How was your Lord's Day? I had a fantastic day. I got up a little later than normal so was very thankful that I was able to sleep in. Then had a bit of a time deciding where to go to church. For those of you who don't know, I've been attending a church about 45miles away for the last year. I love the church but dislike the commute. There has been lots of thought and prayer surrounding my decision to attend and be a member of a church so far away but I trust the Lord and am waiting on Him to direct me in this adventure. So, this morning I was really tired and just was not in the mood to drive all that way....even considered having "church" at home with some worship music and bible reading but decided that I needed the corporate worship experience! I went to BVG and was so very blessed to be there! Rick is preaching a series on grace and this mornings topic was sustaining grace. He covered how God sustains us by His grace and offers us the same power that raised Jesus from the dead! How awesome is that!
It was a beautiful time spent in the Word, in worship, and in fellowship. THANK YOU LORD FOR HOW YOU CONTINUALLY BLESS ME!!!
Now on to the second topic of my post. I have recently been encouraged to put together a God's Delight book by my friend and bible study table leader, Robin. I've been struggling a bit with my attitude and outlook on my life. It has been rather depressing and I've not been all that fun to be around. I've been entertaining the "glass is half empty" viewpoint about my life. Over the last few months I've talked with many a girlfriend about the unfair things in my life (a bit of a pity party!) and they've all been so sweet in listening...but one in particular has helped me look at a way to change the landscape of my thoughts (thanks Robin!). She has been talking to me about putting together this little book called a God's Delight book in which I chronicle the ways that God brings me delight in picture and in will help my disposition she says....I'd agreed all along that it sounded like a great thing to do but had not commited. Well, 2 Monday's ago I was staying with Robin after bible study and we talked about it was too late for me to see an example of what a God's Delight book looks like so we agreed that the next time I was over I would take a look at one of her books. The following week I remembered and asked Robin if I could see one and when I saw it I KNEW that I needed to do this! I went ahead and bought the photo album from her right then and there and commited to beginning it the very next day.
I must say girls (and Matt...thanks for reading!) that doing this little task has began to change my life! I am looking at the world around me through different eyes....eyes of wonder at the world that God has created and with a heart of thankfulness that He has chosen to bless me in such a sweet and wonderful way! I still struggle with my attitude and disposition but it is changing....Praise God, I am changing! I don't need to be burdened by a spirit of opression and an attitude that says, "God you are not big enough to change me, you are not ENOUGH for me!"....this position is so wrong girls! So wrong! God wants us to live a life of freedom and we too regularly settle for slavery and don't embrace the power He gives us!
Ok...enough of my preaching! Just had to fill you in on that!
Here are a few pics that will be going into my God's Delight book......

So for this one...I took it at sunset and love the contrast of the dark colors of the trees with the warm tones of the sky....Isn't God amazing to create somethings so beautiful....As a matter of fact, I have a cute little story with this pic....I was at Michaels with Cole and he noticed the sky getting dark. He said "lights, lights" and pointed to the sky. I said "yes, it is getting dark". After we came out of the store it was pitch black and Cole said "no lights". I told him that God had turned off the lights for today and he was so cute and said "lights on!". I told him that they would come back on tomorrow morning! Isn't that cute?!

I took this one tonight outside my local starbucks (where I am updating this blog....) because the 3 trees made me think of the trinity.
The rest of these pics are of the kids this weekend....Cole had climbed up onto the counter to getto a bag of marshmallows. The underwear pic was me trying to get him interested in underwear and when I gave him a pair this is where he thought he put them...he was serious! I had to show him what to do with them! So cute!
Kensley with her feet...she really likes her feet right now! She is a precious baby that I just adore!