Thursday, May 31, 2007

I Feel Like I'm Leaving on A Trip...

I do! It feels like I'm getting ready for a vacation.

I've spent this week getting all kinds of things in order--Zach's school stuff, church nursery stuff, laundry/ironing stuff, mail stuff, returning calls and emails--you know, all those little things that add up to a lot of "stuff" you gotta do.

I only wish it were a vacation I was taking, but instead I'm preparing for my surgery next Wednesday. After much prayer and discussion with my hubby and others--I've decided to go ahead with the hysterectomy. From what I've heard, for the first two weeks I won't feel like doing much of anything, so I'm trying to get as much done now, so I can be a good girl ::smile:: and recover like I am supposed to. I am going to try really hard to be good and do only what I am supposed to do. Promise. : )

And...because the remodeling continues at our house (this was the scene yesterday as an old bathtub/shower is removed from one of the bathrooms)--it looks like I will spend some time recovering at Ashleigh and John's.

From what I understand, I'll be in the hospital for a few days and then I'll be at home for a few days and then, go to Ash and John's house so the work can continue on our house. That big, beautiful house of theirs has stairs, so I'm not quite sure how I'll navigate those yet--but we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

An interesting little tidbit--the hospital I am going to is well known because certain U.S. presidents have been there, as well as celebrities. The last time I was there for a minor procedure, they had a harpist playing in the recovery area. Nice, huh? : )

So, I'm packing my little suitcase and getting ready for my little "trip". I have total peace about it all and am just really looking forward to feeling better. God is good!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I've Been Tagged...

Robin over at Robinznest tagged me to participate in this little meme:

1. Grab the book closest to you
2. Open it to page 161
3. Find the fifth full sentence
4. Post the text of the sentence to your blog
5. Don't search around for the coolest book you have, use the one that is really next to you.
6. Tag five people to do this meme.

Ok, so the book closest to me is: Women of Character-90 Refreshing Readings on Courage and Virtue by Lawrence Kimbrough. (How funny that a man complied these readings! : ) ) I received the book as part of a beautiful gift basket that my good friend Stacey sent me last month when I was in the hospital. When I turn to page 161, the fifth full sentence reads:

"We have to remember that in the sight of God there are no social conventions, and that external sins are not a bit worse in his sight than the pride that hates the rule of the Holy Spirit, though the life is morally clean."

This particular "reading" was by Oswald Chambers. Good stuff, huh? : )

Thanks to Robin for tagging me! Anyone else who wants to participate, consider yourself tagged--just let me know in the comments, so I can go to your blog and check out your answer.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Grubstakes Parade 2007

Each year on Memorial Day weekend, our little town hosts the annual Grubstakes Parade. Our church usually has an entry and this year we decorated one of the church buses and had people ride and wave, as well as folks walking the parade route handing out tracts and candy. Here are a few pictures from this morning:

My guys--Zach and Rande

The steer horns used to transform our bus into a "western" bus. : )

Yep, that's who we are: Calvary Baptist Church--Celebrating our Spiritual Heritage.

The bus driver--Bro. Show. He also happens to be my hubby's good friend, a deacon at our church and the electrical contractor for our remodel. (He's done a fabulous job with the lighting in our house!)

Pastor Watkins doing one of his "famous" gospel illusions while waiting for the parade to start.

Pastor and Mrs. Watkins--we love our pastor and his family!! They are the BEST!!

Bro. Misner (he's a REAL cowboy!) and Casey--one of our Bible college students.

The tracts--we pray the Lord would use the message found within the tracts to draw people to Him.

The Misner girls--aren't they sweet?! Not only do they look so pretty all dressed up, but these girls are so talented. They have some of the most beautiful and natural harmonies I have ever heard.

Little Noel--too precious!!

Banner, Zach and Bro. Misner

Chester--don't you just love that smile?! : )

Hope you enjoyed the pictures! And I hope y'all have a blessed Memorial Day weekend!!

Memorial Day...

Do any of you remember the little red poppies that the VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) would hand out? Disabled veterans would make the paper poppies and then hand them out at grocery stores or other public places on Memorial Day in remembrance of those who had been killed during wartime. I haven't seen those little poppies for years--do they even give them out anymore? I remember as a little girl getting the poppies and my dad explaining very somberly their significance. I am so thankful my dad took the time to explain to me what Memorial Day was about.

I am also thankful for my hubby (a former Marine) who instilled in our children the importance of patriotic holidays--by talking about their meaning and making sure our flag was out and waving proudly.
So today, Memorial Day 2007 (2008), we are remembering and praying for those families who have lost loved ones in the current war or past wars. How very thankful we are, for the ultimate sacrifice these brave men and women have paid--with their lives--so that we can have freedom in the United States of America.

In Memory of:

Spc. Timothy D. Watkins

Killed in Ar Ramadi, Iraq, on Oct. 15, 2005. Tim was our Pastor's son--a godly and fine young man. Tim was such a fun guy and our son Zach looked up to Tim a lot--he was truly a hero. He is missed today and always.

Ssgt. Daniel J. Clay

Killed in Iraq on December 1, 2005. Dan and his wife Lisa were John and Ashleigh's (my daughter) first neighbors when they moved onto base back in July 2004. During his January 2006 State of the Union Address, President Bush spoke of Ssgt. Clay and read a letter he had written to his family in the event of his death. Here is a quote, but you can read the letter in it's entirety here.

"Now here are my final wishes. Do not cry! To do so is to not realize what we have placed all our hope and faith in. We should not fear. We should not be sad. Be thankful. Be so thankful. All we hoped for is true. Celebrate! My race is over, my time in war zone is over. My trials are done. A short time separates all of us from His reality. So laugh. Enjoy the moments and your duty. God is wonderful. I love each and every one of you. Spread the word .... Christ lives and He is Real. Semper Fidelis"

"The memory of the just is blessed..."

Proverbs 10:7

Thursday, May 24, 2007

7 Random Things...

I have seen this meme on many of the blogs I enjoy reading and I think it's a fun way to get to know people. Even though I wasn't officially "tagged"--many bloggers don't actually tag specific people, they just say if you want to participate, then just do it! : ) So, that's what I am going to do. And if you want to participate, leave me a comment that you did the meme and I will be sure to read it.

So here goes...

7 Random Things About Me:

1. I can say my ABC's backwards. My 5th grade teacher had the entire class learn this exercise and I can still do it to this day!

2. I am adopted.

3. Mishel is my middle name. It was my parent's choice to call me by my middle name instead of my first. It always brought a lot of confusion in school and still does when I have to fill out paperwork. Sometimes I won't even correct it and will just answer to my first name. ; )

4. I am an only child. Which is probably why I always wanted a large family. But the Lord had different plans and I am thankful for the two blessings He gave to us.

5. I am deathly afraid of crickets. I am just sure they are going to eat me! LOL

6. I love--I mean LOVE bluegrass music. I have loved it since I was a little girl, but wasn't encouraged to listen to it because my mom hated it. Funny thing is, now that her grandson plays the fiddle, she's ok with it. : )

7. I have a really hard time getting up in front of people to speak. This is always something that really surprises people because I am pretty outgoing and love talking to people. But--if I have to stand up in front of people and speak to a crowd--yikes!! It makes me want to pass out!

Ok--now it's your turn! Leave me a comment if you participate so I can go to your blog and read your answers.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

My Favorite New Treat...

If you like "Drumsticks"--you know, the yummy ice cream cones with the little surprise of chocolate fudge at the bottom of the cone? Then you would enjoy The Skinny Cow ice cream cones. The cones come in three different flavors and they are simply delicious!! But the best part is that they only have 3 grams of fat!! Woohoo!

Ok, my commercial is over. : )

Decisions, Decisions...

Warning: If you are of the male persuasion and read my blog, I would encourage you to skip this entry as it may be a little too much info for you. I can't think of any men who read my blog, but if you are out there, don't say I didn't warn you! LOL (And Honey, if you are reading this--of course I am not talking about you! ::smile::)

Yesterday afternoon I was standing in Lowe's trying to decided which toilet style I liked and it struck me as being sort of interesting that there I was trying to make decisions about toilets, tile and bathroom sinks for our remodeling project--and I was slightly distracted by the fact that I also had to make a decision regarding a surgery I am to have. My mind was going back and forth between bathroom stuff and surgery stuff.

Talk about craziness!

I had two doctor appointments yesterday. The first one was for an ultrasound and the second was to consult with the doctor regarding the results and what my options are for my "female issues" (i.e. heavy bleeding). As most of you know, I had a D&C last month (while in Alabama to care for my mother who was very ill). I had been bleeding for four weeks and it had really taken a toll on me. Since this was not the first time I had dealt with this (I have a thickening of the uterine lining), my doctor has suggested a hysterectomy (keeping my ovaries) or an endometrial ablation. There are pros and cons to both and now I have a decision to make.

I have been doing some reading online and at this point I am really torn--and I have to make a decision by the end of the week. The main issue is that the hysterectomy will take care of the problem completely and the ablation should take care of it, but is less invasive. The other issue is if I have the ablation, I will have to be on birth control because there is a slight chance of pregnancy, which would end in miscarriage because there would not be enough uterine lining to sustain a pregnancy. Also the recovery time is much shorter with the ablation compared to the hysterectomy.

I know there are a few of you who have had hysterectomies, but has anyone had an endometrial ablation?

So, I have a decision to make and I am praying for wisdom to make the right one. The decision on what kind of tile to use in the bathrooms was a whole lot easier!! : )

I apologize for the nature of this post and I realize it's probably way more information than you wanted to know, but I am trying to make an informed decision and thought I'd see if any of you had any input. Thanks for bearing with me! : )

Monday, May 21, 2007

Desert Mornings, Sunday Happenings and Other Stuff...

I love the desert in the morning--especially during spring and summer.

It's those few hours before the heat starts to set in, that I love. I open the windows so I can let the breeze in and listen to the birds that love to hang out in our huge mesquite tree. There are cottontail bunnies searching the ground for food--and little quail families busily moving from here to there. It truly is my favorite time of day. : )

Yesterday was such a GREAT day! Can I tell y'all I *love* our church? I do. I really do. Because of all that's been going on around here and with my health issues, I have had to miss more church services than I care to. I was so happy to be in church yesterday! Pastor Watkins preached a great sermon (1 Peter 2:1-3) in the morning service about how the Word of God should be a "source of delight" to us as Christians and we should love His Word passionately. Good stuff!! : ) There were also two salvation decisions and two families became members.

I helped in the nursery during Sunday School, which was a blessing because I really miss those little ones. Again, because of my health issues, I have not been able to be in the nursery (I am the coordinator) and I've missed it. A dear and precious lady has taken over for me (thanks Caren!!) and she is doing a great job. She is an answer to prayer. Being the nursery coordinator is a BIG job and it can be a little stressful at times, but Caren has stepped in with a desire to serve the Lord and a joyful heart. Such a blessing!

After church I came home and for the first time since the beginning of the year, I was able to make a nice lunch for my family. It had been our custom to have a nice lunch/dinner after church on Sundays, but with our remodel going on, it just wasn't possible. So, yesterday I made a nice meal. And while we weren't able to eat at the dining room table--it was really wonderful to cook for my family and have some normalcy.

Then in the evening we all headed back to church. Sunday evenings are my favorite service. I love the sweet fellowship that happens after the service. There is usually a lot of laughter, people playing instruments--or a small group of people talking intently. Last night was no different and it was a blessing to be apart of it. I am so thankful for our church family.

It was a good day--a GREAT day.

Today I have two doctors appointments and my hubby and I have to pick out the ceramic tile for our bathrooms. It's going to be a busy day, but I am looking forward to spending some time with my husband because he's been at work (he's a firefighter) the past three days. I've missed that guy!!

Happy Monday everyone!! : )

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Yet, I Will Rejoice in the Lord...

Yesterday Zach and I made the long trek to his fiddle lessons (2 1/2 hrs. away). I really don't mind the drive at all--it provides some wonderful times of fellowship and conversation with my sixteen-year-old son. And any of you who have boys, can probably relate to the fact that you take these moments when you can, because unlike girls, boys are not generally "talkers". : )

On the way home, we stopped at a friend's house so Zach could help load up their belongings, because our friends are moving to a new home. It was nice to spend some time with our dear friends--the Uglums. The new house they are moving into is truly a gift from the Lord and it was exciting to see, after months of praying and waiting on the Lord--the answer to their prayers. Through my own trials these past few months, I have been greatly encouraged by the faith and trust our friends have exhibited.

After leaving the Uglums, Zach and I headed home so we could make it to church in time. I can't remember what started the conversation:

Zach: "Wow! We sure have had a rough couple of months! I can't believe everything that has happened. Actually, it's been a rough couple of years." (He was referring to our remodel nightmare.)

Me: "Yep, we sure have!" I smiled. "But isn't it amazing to see the hand of God in all of it? I mean, look at how we were so overwhelmed in the beginning and now we just go with the flow. God's grace has truly been sufficient to see us through."

We then went on to talk about all the blessings the Lord has given to us in the midst of the difficult times--and there have been many. God has been very merciful and gracious to us, no doubt.

Eventually Zach dozed off and I was left to my own thoughts. I began reflecting on the events of the past few months--the major events I've posted here on my blog, but there have been others--some more personal and not for posting on a public blog--that have been very painful and difficult. There were many days when I felt very weak--both physically and spiritually--days when I felt I (or my precious family) simply could not take another thing.

And it was during those times--when a scripture or song would pop into my head--or we'd receive a card or a phone call letting us know people were praying. I would sign on to my blog and see the comments from my bloggy friends and be so encouraged! : ) One morning, when I was having a very difficult time, Zach and I sat on the couch as he read psalm after psalm aloud to me. Through each of these different things, I would KNOW the presence of God and the feelings of being overwhelmed would be replaced by the peace that comes from resting in the Lord (Philippians 4:6-7).

So yes, it's been an interesting few months. : ) But today, I praise the Lord for getting us through it all and taking care of every detail. Truly, His strength was made perfect in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). I praise Him for these difficult times, because it has caused me to pray more, search His word more and cling to Jesus even tighter. That's a good thing, right?! : )

I will leave you with one of my favorite portions of scripture and these verses are always an encouragement to me when I am facing hard times, because they offer such HOPE. When all else fails--God does not.

"Although the fig tree shall not blossom,
neither shall fruit be in the vines;
the labour of the olive shall fail,
and the fields shall yield no meat;
the flock shall be cut off from the fold,
and there shall be no herd in the stalls:

Yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will joy in the God of my salvation.

The Lord God is my strength,
and he will make my feet like hinds' feet,
and he will make me to walk upon mine high places..."
Habakkuk 3:17-19


Wednesday, May 9, 2007

It's the Simple Things in Life...

Last night was the first time in over 4 weeks, that our family has been home together in the evening. Can I just tell you that it was wonderful?! I made dinner and then we spent the evening relaxing and enjoying being together. It doesn't take much to make me happy! : ) All I know is with the way our life has been over the past few months, I sure have missed some of the little things our family does that just say "us". Last night was a gift from the Lord, indeed!

We are getting ready to leave for my father-in-law's memorial this Saturday, so I'll be pretty busy as we make our plans to head back up to northern California. May you all have a wonderful and blessed Mother's Day!! See ya'll when we get back!

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Look Who's Walking!

The other day, Zach and I spent time with Troy while Ashleigh went to a meeting at church. It was a beautiful day, so we went for a walk. Troy decided that because he is walking now--which of course means he is a big boy--he didn't want to be in the stroller. : )

Three of my favorite guys--Zach, Troy and our dog Brodie. And for the record--just a few minutes after this picture was taken, Troy decided it really is okay for big boys to ride in strollers. : )

Monday, May 7, 2007

Psalm 121

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.
My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.
He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber.
Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand.
The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.
The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.
The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

**Image by

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Doctor Appointments, Remodeling and Life...

Yeah! I am finally able to post! As some of you know--in the midst of everything else going on in our life--we are also in the middle of remodeling our house. Fun times for sure!! : ) We've been having electrical work done this week, which means our computer has had to stay off most of the day. I think most of the work is done--so here I am! : )

Since we got home, I have been busy with follow up doctor appointments--seeing both the ob/gyn and cardiologist. It looks like I will be having a hysterectomy in the next few weeks. I have a condition called endometrial uterine hyperplasia. Basically, that means I have a thickening of the uterine lining, which causes prolonged, heavy bleeding. Since I have been dealing with this for almost two years--my doctor and I (and my husband) are in agreement that this is what I need to do. If not, then it leaves me much more susceptible to uterine cancer...and more bleeding.

As far as my heart goes, I think things are going to be just fine. I continue to have the PVC's (premature ventricular contractions), but at least I know what they are and it doesn't freak me out so much. : ) I am on medication to see if it lessens the contractions and so far I haven't noticed much difference. I still have one more test my cardiologist wants me to do and then I should be done. Whew! I sure hope so!! Turning 40 this year has been rough!! LOL

My mother is doing much better--praise the Lord! She continues to get better each day and is even accepting help from those who live around her. She can be pretty stubborn and independent, but I think this whole episode made her realize she needs help and there are those who want to be a blessing to her.

The services for my father-in-law will be next Saturday. My husband is doing good--just taking one day at a time and keeping his eyes on Jesus. He's back at work and busy as ever, which is probably a good thing.

Well, I think that's our life this week. : ) I am by myself tonight (hubby working and Zach is with Ashleigh) so I am VERY much looking forward to uninterrupted computer time and catch up with all of YOU!! I miss knowing what's happening with y'all!

Thank you again for the many, many prayers on behalf of our family--the Lord has been faithful to answer them. : )