Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day Memories

We usually make a Flag Cake for the Fourth every year. Today we decided to celebrate our soldiers with this smaller version. I've never used the tiny round "shortcakes." Aren't they cute!

My sweet friend, Jennifer, is just days away from kissing her husband goodbye as he goes to serve our country in Iraq for 6 months. Jennifer and I have history. She introduced me to Andy and was a precious part of my days when we were both single, teaching, and living in Atlanta...just out of college. She held my bouquet when I said, "I do!" We've made many memories together. I know these next several months will be tough as she cares for her 4 munchkins on her own without daddy. They live in San Antonio. You can pray for them if you think about it. I know she'd appreciate it.

Happy Memorial Day!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Yee Haw!

We went to the Rodeo last night with our dear friends, The Wickisers. It was a rip-roarin' good time. My favorite event is always the calf roping. I got a kick out of Rebecca's keen awareness of the teenage cowboys roping those calves. She was happy 'cause the cute one won. My heart always beats a little faster when the young boys start ridin' those bulls. After all, they are somebody's child.

I think Andy and I, both, would have loved to have grown up on a farm. I read The Pioneer Woman and ponder how I would have loved that life...I think, maybe, I don't know. One of my sons might have wanted to be a bull rider...

...never mind. I like my life.

Friday, May 27, 2011


I Love you truly
Truly Dear
Life with its sorrow
Life with its tear
Fades into Joy
When I feel you are near
For I love you truly
Truly Dear.

Sixteen years ago this dashing young man asked me to marry him...
...And I said "YES!"

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Working for Him

This is what my children do when they unload the dishwasher. They put the plastic stuff in the "drainer" to drain.... so they don't have to dry it. They assure me they are coming back to put it away when it's dry. This rarely happens.

Tonight, while Caroline was unloading...

Me: Caroline, you are going to have to dry that stuff because I need the "drainer" cleared out.

Caroline: I am NOT doing that. There is just too much. I don't feel like it.

Me: Well, I am NOT cooking your dinner. It's just too much. I don't feel like it.

She halfway laughed and started drying the plastic stuff. And our little "moment" in the kitchen made me think about a lesson I just learned today from a book I have been reading. Funny how God does that.

"When service is unto people, the bones grow weary, the frustration deep. But when Christ is the center, when dishes, laundry, work, is my song of thanks to Him... JOY reigns."

Maybe if I learn to sing this song of thanks to Him, my darling children will too.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Oh! The Places You'll Go!

She's the kind of girl who brings her American Girl doll, sings show tunes, paints fingernails and toenails, does make-up, and watches Disney and laughs. She loves all things "girly" and exudes a genuine love for the Lord. She is every girl's (and mom's) dream of a baby sitter and I'm just so glad we get to know her. Tonight we celebrated her "soon to be" graduation from high school. She wants to be a teacher, like her mom. She's gonna be every kid's "favorite"...I know it!

Today is your day.
You're off to Great Places!
You're off and away!

You have brains in your head.

You have feet in your shoes
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.

~Dr. Seuss~

Oh! And sometimes she even brings her cute boyfriend...
and my girls don't mind a bit.

Family Outing

I don't usually go on these outings, because..

#1 there is obviously no room for me in the boat,
and #2 there are bugs,
and #3 it is hot...and sticky.

But yesterday I went.

I took my chair, my bug spray, my book, my tea, and my camera, and I found a little spot in the shade to sit and watch and read and capture memories. Here are some of them...

They caught at least a half a dozen fish. We had a picnic...homemade pimento cheese...our favorite. It was a great way to spend a Sunday evening.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The End

One of the greatest privileges of being a teacher is reading aloud to my students. I LOVE to gather them together on the floor and share a favorite story. More often than not, when I begin to share a book with them, I say:

"THIS is my FAVORITE book...ever!"

To which the class replies:

"Mrs. Lamb, you say that EVERY time!"

Today we finished this great classic. I cried. I always cry. If you've never read it, it's a must...go get it today! It is a precious story of the innocence of children, of repentance and forgiveness.

Speaking of the innocence of children, I am about to have to give up this bunch for the summer... forever. On June 7th, they will leave me. They will pack up their belongings and walk out of my classroom. It's not fair. It's not fair that they give me everyday of their little lives for 9 months, and then they just leave...

...and I will cry. I always cry.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

When your actions don't back up your words

This afternoon I was fussing at Rebecca for not promptly getting off the computer when asked. Actually, "fussing" is probably not the best term for it. After she yelled at me from two rooms away to "HOLD ON", I stopped, took a deep breath, and asked God to help me calmly discuss with her the inappropriateness of her response.

Me: Did you just hear yourself? You just told me to "HOLD ON."

R: I did?

Me: Yes. Loudly. You yelled it at me.

R: Oh. Sorry.

Me: In case you forgot, I am your mother, and that is probably not the best way to speak to me. (Sometimes sarcasm helps.)

She laughed and apologized again. I was pricked by the Lord and confessed to her how the computer can be an idol in my life too. Sometimes it is more important than people. I am sure that I have told my girls to "HOLD ON" a time or two when what I was doing was not really that important. Maybe more than a time or two. Sometimes, I guess it is better for them to learn from my confession than from my example.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Paying Attention

It's the little moments in the day that I so often miss enjoying. Lately I have been asking God to help me pay attention.

Today I payed attention when Caroline left the table to say hello to her dog in the backyard. I took a moment to enjoy her little friend there on her math book.

I left the kitchen for a moment after preparing the salads for dinner, and this is what I found when I returned....

....somebody couldn't wait. Sweet.

We are in the middle of ANOTHER project, courtesy of Mrs. Mary Long. Today, Caroline and I researched that New Orleans is below sea level and how it has been affected by Hurricane Katrina and currently threatened by the Mississippi flooding.....which led us into conversation about the losses in Alabama.

As we walked in the door after dropping Rebecca off at the Y, Caroline recognized out loud the blessings of having steps to walk up, a front door to walk in, and a home to enjoy. I'm glad God is teaching her to "pay attention" too.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

6th Grade Play Date

These four have been together since Kindergarten. I tried to surprise them on Friday with an afternoon playdate, but you can't keep nothin' from them. The original plan was to pick them up after school and take them to the movies. That evolved into a trip to Greenville to the mall, dinner at Olive Garden, and a sleepover at our house. Secretly, I was happy to "scrap" the movie idea and go shopping.
I got so tickled at these two accessorizing their outfits. The purse is about as big as they are.

I had never set foot in Hollister for fear of what I might find. It always looked like a dark cave and the music wafting out was loud and loud and... well, loud. I ventured in with the girls and found myself in a world of happy and fun and cute and cozy. They were playing Colbie and there was even a comfy place to sit. The girls had a fabulous time in the enormous dressing room and I just so happened to have a camera!
Four very different girls with four very different personalities. I listened and observed.... relishing in their conversation, their giggles, their understanding and acceptance of one another.
When they woke, we went on our traditional "Pajama Donut Run" and then one by one they said goodbye.
I can't wait until the next 6th grade play date. I might even get me one of those short skirts at Hollister....not.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Front Porch Praises

While I sang His song
She hopped along
Morning nourishment bringing

With worm in beak
She thought it sweet
That I should, too, be singing

For as I sang
Unto the King
And there my voice did raise

She dropped her worm
And she, too, turned
To join with me in praise.

(by Alisa Lamb 5-10-11)

"Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them." Matthew 6:26

Monday, May 9, 2011

Kids These Days

I spent my mother's day weekend at Myrtle Beach on the junior high youth beach retreat as designated "camp cook" along with my dear friend, Elizabeth. My car was packed to the hilt with all the food. When we arrived on Friday night (11:00pm!), I dreaded unloading the car and the long haul of food up all those flights at the beach house. I got out of my car and opened the back hatch. Before I had a chance to blink (literally) the car was empty. I had not lifted a finger. Even my own belongings had been delivered to my "own room" (with Elizabeth) in the beach house. Wow. This is gonna be nice.... I thought. And "nice" is just an understatement.

"Nice" can't even begin to describe the pleasantness of the whole experience. I watched "tweens" and teens love one another, accept one another, serve one another. I watched them be gracious, and loving, and kind. I watched them sing praises to the Lord without any inhibition. I watched them eager to hear the Word of the Lord... feast upon it, live it. I watched them laugh hysterically and be silly. I heard them appreciate my hard work preparing their meals. I watched my daughter as she sat and listened intently as her youth leader spoke truth to her from the scriptures and I remembered.... just yesterday that was me.

"His mercy extends to those who fear Him, from generation to generation."
Luke 1:50

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Perfectionism can be really ugly.

Poor kid. Sometimes it's a real pain having me for a mom, and I feel for her. She has this project due on Tuesday.... China during the Middle Ages. Although she has been fascinated by the subject (as she is with most anything related to History), I have been bored to tears. Good thing I didn't research a bit of it, nor help or compose any of her paragraphs for all of her specific required info. I do, however, care deeply about how appealing the final product looks. Can we say, "Obnoxious Project Mom!"

Those of you who are like me understand that all pictures must be mounted on cardstock to create a nice border around it. Because I am a teacher, I know that my daughter must do ALL OF THE WORK on her project. I, however, am the self-appointed "Pictures on the Cardstock Mounter"... I just can't give that up.

Today, while I am doing my job, I am barking out orders so that we can get this thing done. Of course, while she types and prints, we run out of one color of ink and can no longer print in color. Meanwhile, the tape-runner runs out of tape and there are no spares to refill it. I am getting agitated, and it is obvious. I just want this thing done so that I can sit down on the couch and read my book...AFTER ALL IT IS SUNDAY AND I SHOULD GET TO REST!!!!!

We took a break. We put the kettle on. We had some tea together. We talked. I told her how my mom used to be about school projects. I told her I had a problem with perfectionism. She said, "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, Mom." She already recognizes that she is so much like me. Tomorrow we will go to the store(s) and get the tape runner refill and the ink cartridge and we will finish the project... and I will try to enjoy it.