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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Seven Belles & The City...











We made it! Six of my best buds plus myself headed to NYC December 11-14th for a big celebration of all of our thirtieth birthdays! (well, not everyone is 30 yet but most!) We had a GREAT time! I personally LOVE New York City at Christmastime (in my opinion its the ONLY time to go!) We arrived in soaking wet rain but made the best of it (thank goodness it only lasted our first day!) We saw Chicago the night we got there and that dried us off a bit, until we hit the torrential downpour as we exited the theatre, but we laughed and made the absolute best of it! We spent Friday and Saturday hitting Canal Street, shopping in Rockefeller Center, 5th Avenue and everywhere in between!!! We were lucky enough to have Miss Long Island (a friend of one of the girls with us) show us around and take us out one night, it was a BLAST! We had a delicious meal in Littly Italy Saturday night after seeing Lady Liberty,strolling through Central Park and checking out every other sight we could possibly see. We even went through Grand Central Station with our reindeer ears on and we were photorgraphed so much we felt like movie stars!!! We wore them all Saturday night once we left dinner at Little Italy and we found a fabulous dessert bar on our way out we had to stop at! Then we even wore our ears through the subway, through downtown and were a hit everywhere! Who knew? The girls about died when I showed up with everyone a pair but everyone in NYC loved them :). We dined on delicious Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes (the bakery where Charolette & Carrie devour cupcakes in SATC). We saw just about every sight in NYC you could see~and all in 3 days! It was a GREAT trip. The town was decorated gorgeous and Christmas was most defintely in the air! We even saw a proposal at midnight at Rockefeller Center Ice Skating rink (too cute!). We stayed so close to Times Square that we were lucky enough to see it all! We even attended church Sunday at St. Patricks, it was the most beautiful church in the U.S. I've ever visited! We could barely walk off the airplane when we finally hit Atlanta Sunday night, were 7 tired little puppies but it was the trip of a lifetime and tons of memories! If 30 has been this good, I can't imagine 40...... :)




Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Thirty and The year of travel......
























































I am so sorry I've been MIA, I smile when I get emails asking where I've been b/c I've not posted, that means a lot! Its nice to know you're read:). I've been out of town most of the time and with that I'll start with......I made a list a while back called a "30 by 30" list and I have had a blast completing it. I got most of all it completed and even gave myself another year while 30 to get the last few things accomplished. Some are as simple as baking a cake from scratch, deep sea fishing and others were a bit more involved...One thing on there was that I wanted to travel this year. I've been fortunate enough to travel in the past and have so many more things I wanted to do and see! Well, I took over 12 trips in 12 months this year! I loved every minute of it! In 2008, I visited Rome, Venice, Florence, Pisa, Paris, Nice, Ireland and some a bit closer to home...Charleston, St. Simons, North Carolina, West Virginia, Galveston Texas, and next week NYC! Not to mention several trips to Big Canoe, one of my most favorite places. I saw things I never thought I'd see, walked where I never thought I'd walk, shopped in the most amazing places, ate authentic cuisene, saw amazing sights in Rome (collesium, patheon, sistine chapel), Shopped in Florence to return with an authentic Italian leather jacket, took a boatride in Venice, Walked Paris an entire day by myself, Gambled in Monte Carlo, jumped in the French Riveria, Spent 2 weekends with awesome college girlfriends in Galveston and Charleston, spent Thanksgiving in Ireland with my 2nd family for my goddaughters baptism, laid on the beach in St Simons (my fave beach spot), saw the most gorgeous leaves in North Carolina, and took in every second. I feel SO BLESSED to have been able to do this and even more blessed that I got to travel with such GREAT people. I traveled most of my trips with different circles of friends or family. Next week I travel with my lifelong best friends, most since grade school to NYC to celebrate ALL of our 30th bdays and I cannot wait, I love that place!! I vowed that turning 30 in 2008 would be great and it's been far beyond what I ever imagined. I have traveled the world, met so many new faces, built long lasting friendships, turned another decade older, had an A-MAZING surprise 30th bday bash which I am FOREVER grateful for, got the gift of my dreams (A Louis Vuitton I've wanted for at least 15 years, yes 15!) :) my relationship with Christ has grown far greater than I could imagine, I've become closer to my family, lifelong friends, gained so many great ones, decorated my house from floors to window treatments, been blessed to speak to groups of women sharing my past struggles and story, became a godmother, ate sushi, gained new neighbors, shared my home, learned true forgiveness and learned love all over again. I am blessed beyond measure. If it wasn't Christmas I'd have that song back on my blog!


I am amazed daily at my family, friends and the love they continue to show me and thank God everyday for that and most importantly his amazing grace he continues to shed on me. "But I am like an olivetree flourishing in the house of God. I trust in God's unfailing love forever and ever" Psalm 52:8. Have a blessed Christmas season. And I promise....more to come!

Love,

Jennifer







Monday, November 17, 2008

SURVIVED & REVIVED!!

THE PRINCESSES'




A-MAZING WORSHIP led by Kristian Stanfill!!!




Yes, we went rolling....;)

I made it!!!! Fourteen WONDERFUL 11th & 12th grade girls and ONE bathroom I've decided is 'roughing it' :) HOWEVER, it worked out PERFECT! There wasn't one fight/issue or drama regarding our limited bathroom space :). There were bodies all over my little house and we seemed to have plenty of room! I ate more than I care to share. We stayed up til 3am on Friday and 2am on Saturday! We spent AWESOME times at the church Friday night,all day Saturday & Sunday morning. We had INCREDIBLE worship led by THE KRISTIAN STANFILL! When not at the church, we had great small group time, a dance-off, a trip to Starbucks, a trip to Wal-Mart (for toilet paper and it wasn't used for the one bathroom) and tiaras for everyone that we doned at church on Saturday evening :). We laughed, we shared, we ate like crazy, we jammed out in the cars to and from our destinations and we all worshipped together at the fabulous services! It was a great weekend minus computers, tv's and even phone calls were short! Nobody even asked to check their facebook page once! :) These girls were amazing!! They are all sooooo special and precious to me. I see them each week in Sunday School but believe me, you don't 'know' them til you spend a weekend w/ them smushed in my house. :) I met a few new faces of girls that had brought friends. I learned what was going on in high school these days and were reminded of my days back at Harrison. I hope they all got something out of the weekend. It was an incredible experience for me! It was a blessing to be their leader AND their host home and I am now even more caught up on the latest ways to shorthand text messaging. :) Thanks for all the prayers that went up for an awesome weekend, they were answered beyond measure!! Have a blessed week! :)







Thursday, November 13, 2008

D-NOW 08'~A passion like Fire!

Well, Disciple Now 08 is here!!!! This is a youth retreat weekend for all our youth (grades 6-12) from our church. This year we have our biggest number ever of youth attending!!! I've been stressed to the max this week, hoping I have enough space to 'house' the precious 11th and 12th grade girls that are assigned at my house, figuring out what to feed them, logistics, scheduling, games, programs and much more. Then I realized having MORE girls than I expected at my house and figuring out a few more last minute details is a GOOD problem. No, it's a GREAT problem. It took me all week to realize that, and an exhausting day today, but I'm finally there. :) D-Now was one of my favorite weekends as a youth no matter who's church was hosting it and I'm trying to remember those great weekends, my leaders and how much fun we all had so I can get in 'high school' mode again :). We have an INCREDIBLE band coming (Kristian Stanfill!!) which will be amazing in itself, we have some killer program, skits & productions that will take place (check back Monday for Jennafergie's appearance, I hear MTV CRIBS stopped by her place!!) :) and even a Tahiti relief project to help our sister church that is in dire need of our assitance right now. I get excited typing it all out! We have an AWESOME group of leaders in place (which always makes it a blast) and more importantly we have an abundance of teenagers coming that I hope and pray are blesssed in many ways this weekend. For those that have asked what they can pray for, THANK YOU! I love that you ask me to blog about this!!! It makes me smile! :) Sooooooo....here goes; Pray for our entire weekend, our plans, our relief project, our speakers, our leaders, our students and most of all for the Lord's prescence to be alive and active! Despite all of us going nuts trying to plan the 'perfect' weekend, we know that we WILL have enough beds, we WILL have enough breakfast, we WILL have enough pray and play time :). Now we rest.......rest in the goodness that WILL take place this weekend! Our theme is on fire, so pray we're all fired up :).
If I'm awake enough Monday I'll catch you all up with an update and pictures ;). Seeing as I'll have a HOUSE FULL of High School Junior & Senior Girls ALL weekend at my home, I'm thinking Monday will be a 'recovery' day. :) But a blessing it will be!
Fired Up,
~Jennifer (aka Jennafergie!)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Grace.....Again

As you know I love me some music :). And so so many speak to me in times of need and in worship. However right now, if there is any one song that speaks to me, it's this one. I would add it to my playlist but it won't let me quite yet. :) I absolutely love the lyrics and feel that if there is one song I could've written about my journey.......this just might be it. I wonder if they got in my mind to get the lyrics :). We're given so many gifts throughout our life, and for each one I'm thankful for....the gift of life, family, friends, unconditional love, forgiveness, joy, peace, and even eternity. I find myself most thankful for grace. I'd be lost without it yet I spent so many years not knowing what grace even was! It always sounded good and 'pretty' and something I wanted but thank God, I learned what grace felt like. It's a gift everyday which I am forever grateful for. This is a great one, I encourage you to really listen to it. I hope you're reminded as much as I was while listening to it, how amazing His grace truly is. Check it out.....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g00W8PLa1RI

"No freedom from the choices I had made, but with one touch you made me clean, You met me in my deepest need. "

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Faithful


Let me share a little bit about being faithful that I learned this weekend..... Faithful is being committed to someone or something no matter what comes your way. Faithful is being busy, dedicated, tired, dealing with the good and the ugly, going at all costs to be a part of it, making it the best it can be, showing honor, desire, compassion and unconditonal love. Faithful is serving at ONE church for FORTY years. Yes, you read that right FORTY years. This past Sunday, my grandmother, Jackie Conley, was honored at her church, Edgewood United Methodist in Columbus, Georgia for being their piano and organist for FORTY YEARS. I cannot type it enough! :) She came to the church in 1968 after moving from Savannah, and one month later her husband was stricken with a brain tumor and passed away shortly after. This church helped feed, cloth and nurture her and her four young children. She jumped right in to help them by being their pianist and organist...and has never left her bench. We have planned NUMEROUS if not all family vacations around her Sundays so she could be there to play. She has hardly missed a Sunday in all of those forty years. She has accompanied some of the best! I was honored to be asked to speak at the 11 o' clock service and I tried my best to praise her name, which wasn't a hard task at all. Not only is this woman faithful to her position in the church, she is faithful to the Heavenly Father, more than anyone else I've ever known. She has never waivered in her faith despite her hard times, she is the most trusting, faithful child of God. I cannot think of the phrase "Bride of Christ" without thinking of her. She is the most PATIENT woman. I wish I had half of her patience. She is patient in teaching piano students, she patiently and repeatedly taught me to play the piano, a trait which I am FOREVER grateful to her for. She is the prime example of God's love. She loves others, and serves others just as Christ called us to do. No matter what became of the church throughout the years, she remained steady, strong and true to her Sunday school class, her women's bible studies and most devoted to the 88 keys in front of her. If you asked her to pray for you, I guarantee you she has. I never see her without her bible, devotional book and the comic section of the paper. :). A best friend, brought this to my attention as she heard the news of the celebration ceremony and said "40 years at the same church is amazing!! Can you imagine someone from our generation doing that? We’re more “disposable” than that generation…we change jobs, churches, houses, etc. Our grandparents live in the same houses they bought when they got married, retired from the first job they had and go to the same church they were probably married in!! I think they were more tolerant that we are. If their house got too small once they had kids, they just made them sleep in the same room and made do. If their job was awful, they just sucked it up and dealt with it. And if the church wasn’t doing so good, they just prayed about it and stuck with it until it was doing better. We move into bigger houses, quit our jobs because “it doesn’t make me happy” and bounce around from church to church. I wonder what that says about our generation? Maybe we should be more tolerant? Or maybe we’re happier b/c we MAKE our own happiness by improving our lives?
I only could think 'wow' after I read this. These are all fabulous points! No idea if its a generational thing or what, but regardless Jackie Conley is the definition of faithful. To stand to a promise and observance in duty. She has played every hymn ever written, played for weddings, funerals, colleges, students and anything else that came her way. She never left the gift she was given, nor never ignored it, she used it all for His glory. We can praise her all we want, but I know one day she'll hear the words from the one that matters "Well done, good and faithful servant" Matthew 25:21

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Tis the Season? Already? YES! :)

Come one, come all! Its the fabulous Junior League Mistletoe Market this week at the Cobb County Civic Center. Tickets are just $6 at the door and its something you don't want to miss! The event brings in sooooooooooooo many great vendors. Tons of children's things, great 'girly' gifts, home decor, books, and more! The Junior League has put this on for many years now and each year gets better and better. It's titled one of the 'biggest and best' of the South's shows! Don't worry....it's not a 'craft show' for you Southern gals that know the true craft shows :). It has LOTS of cute things! I get so much of my Christmas shopping done when I'm there!! I am very excited this year since I am the Special Events chair. Its been A LOT of work but I think it will pay off in the end. We have a big galla event this Friday that has me working and stressing like crazy but I think everything is in order...at least, lets hope so :). So come out to the Civic Center, its fun, seasonal and always a hit! Hours are: Thursday and Friday 9am-6pm, Saturday 9am-4pm at the Cobb Civic Center! And by all means if you are there ask for me! I'll be living there from Wednesday afternoon til Saturday night! I'd love to see you!

Monday, October 6, 2008

CHICKNICK 2008


Well it was that time of year again for our annual "Chicknick" trip. This trip is taken with some of my oldest and dearest friends. (See my previous post 'Lifelong Friends' in July to REALLY know these gals!) :) Anyhow, we headed up to our families cabin in Big Canoe Friday afternoon and we had THE BEST time ever. Chicknick is always so fun. We laugh til we cry, we eat way too much and somehow always end up dancing...in our pj's nonetheless. A "true" slumber party. Everyone even had to bring their own 'slumber snack!' We also play "Favorite Things" each year, which is where you bring your favorite thing under $20, each year this game is a blast and its so fun to get to know someone else's favorite item. So all sorts of things make an appearance at this game! We play the traditional way where we draw numbers, steal gifts,etc and everyone leaves with someone else's favorite thing. Many girls get very creative. Saturday the weather was GORGEOUS so we had pedicures and played tennis, we also had dinner out and we were so loud and with 11 of us we had the cameras going, we thought we were paparazzi! I was convinced we were "that table" until someone said how nice it was to see a group of girls get together for a weekend of fun. We are all blessed to have each other. I cannot think of one minute that someone wasn't laughing on this trip. It's one of my most favorite weekends and it was a great time for us to really getaway. Some left spouses at home, some left children at home and it was a true getaway for all! We even reminised on old times and old trips. I had a blast and love these girls with all my heart! They are the best friends a girl could ask for.....and the memories are priceless.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Home is where the heart is....


As some of you know the past 4 months I've had 2 fabulous roommates! Kristie & her precious son Isaac have been living with me until their house was ready. Things could not have worked out more smoothly. Just as she moved in, a house across the street was available, purchased and renovated for her & Isaac and they moved in last weekend! I think its just perfect for them and even better they are not going far! I've grown quite attached to Isaac and I'd die if he was going much further than across the street! So its a blessing for all! I have loved watching him grow the past few months at my house. We've laughed alot about the fact that he will spend his first day at kindergarten saying his favorite color is pink, he loves to shop, he loves high heels, porch parties, Sex & The City re-runs and coordinating outfits. I am afraid I've corrupted him. :)


It's been fun and she was so great to put up with me and all my craziness! I LOVE to entertain and I think in the 120 days they were there as Kristie says "this is party #76" and she's probably right. :) Dinner clubs, Jr League events, Southern Living Parties, Premiere Parties, Neighbor Dinners, Birthday Dinners, just to name a few ;) she has helped with and patiently endured. She followed me around and turned off the lights, cleaned up after me, located many missing shoes, keys, and whatever article of clothing I HAD to have that night, helped me put things together that I ordered and could NOT do alone, played musical cars in the driveway, endured my cooking ;), shared cokes for our 'caffeine fixes' and reminded me of trash days just to name a short few! I already miss her I missed trash day this past Tuesday! :)


But aside from this, I'll miss our late night chats and our deep discussions. I know they're in the right place and God had a plan in all of this when He brought us together, and we know he did because too much of it we couldn't have managed ourselves! We sat in amazement before she moved out on the front porch rocking chairs AMAZED by the way it all played out, all by God's hand. Kristie has grown so much in her faith in just a few short months and has been inspiring to me!! She is a lady of grace and dignity and has proven so strong during her heartbreaking trials, this girl is a survivor. God has GREAT plans for her & Isaac I cannot wait to see it all unfold and all from a great view.... just across the street.


"'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Washed White as Snow...

I don't even quite know how to begin this blog. I have to say I was a part of something last Sunday that will forever be engraved in my mind. Let's start a few months back...
Last September I started attending Divorcecare at a local church. My "home church" did not offer this at the time. It took A LOT to go but I went willingly and ready. It was one of the greatest decisions I ever made. I met so many precious people in that class, we cried, laughed and truly healed. One girl in paticular Kristi, and I formed a quick bond, we were about the same age, had matching purses (you know instant fashion bonds) and stayed in touch throughout the class and for a year after and still going! Kristi & I shared in daily struggles and trials that go along with our changed lifestlyes. A few months ago, Kristi asked if I would consider baptizing her at her church. At first my gut reaction was "heck no I can't do that" but I prayed about it and spoke to several ministers about this. The way her church does it is that someone that has walked alongside you or encouraged you in your spiritual life typically baptizes you, alongside with the pastor. I had never heard of such! This is a hip, awesome, very respected church in our area too. I had no doubts what they were doing was on the "up and up" but I wanted to know for me. :) I even had friends flat out say "Jennifer, you can't do that!" Also, I was the FIRST to admit "I am not worthy of this" Well, after considerable amount of prayer, and much guidance I agreed to take part. Still wasn't sure of how this was going to be done, but I was going to do it and... quietly. Sunday, I walked into the church, over 20 others were being baptized that day mostly by family or friends. I had a complete peace about the entire thing. Kristi's turn came and as we watched her awesome video/testimony I was able to say a few words and then baptize her in the name of our Father, Son and Holy Spirit. It was the 'traditional' Baptist way, even though this was a non-denominational church. And it was quite an experience!! It was an honor to be a part of her special day and amazing to see the personalization of each baptized that morning. Kristi herself emailed me first thing Monday morning and thanked me yet again for doing this. Little did she know it did more for me than her. One of the many things I got from Kristi is how she described the experience...her words were " I just remember being raised out of that water and feeling your hand on my shoulder. It truly felt like I was washed a new and the old stayed in that tank. I saw little debris of lint, hair, etc. in the water when I got in and at first thought it might be a little icky but after coming up out of the water I realized that that was just the old from each of us in that tank and God has now washed it clean for the next lost soul." Wow, could she have said this any better??
How often do we see baptisms but do we really realize we are washed white as snow? I was feeling so unworthy of this honor, yet maybe I needed to realize myself that, I too was washed white as snow and thankfully am over and over again. Even though we all have sin that crimson stains our lives, fabulously He washes it white as snow! He paid it all with His crimson~His blood He shed at the cross for US to be washed white as snow. Pretty rockin' if I do say so myself :)

"Come now, and let us reason together" says the Lord, "Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be as white as snow, though they are red like crimson, they will be like wool." Isaiah 1:18

Friday, September 12, 2008

Friday's Fun Facts :)

TGIF :) Love the weekends! Here are ten "Fun Facts" about me that you may not know! :)

1-I have had 8 cars! (before you think I'm a horrible driver-only one replaced due to a wreck!) :)
2-I looove cheese!
3-All the family on my moms side (alll 23 of us) live within 5 miles of each other
4-I play the piano
5-I have been in 14 weddings
6-I have a PINK bathroom (original 1950s pink, love it!)
7-I run my heater in my office 365 days a year-yes even in 90 degree temps outside, I'm always cold!
8-If you come to a shower, party or dinner at my house I would cry if we ran out of food, not gonna happen, it's a southern thing ;)
9-5 out of 6 my grandparents are living~one that I never had the chance to meet, the others I have been blessed to know well. I've also known 6 of my great grandparents in my lifetime!!
10-I am taking 12 trips in 12 months this year for my 30th bday year! It's on my "30 x 30' list that I have loved completing!

Have a fabulous weekend!!!

Friday, September 5, 2008

God's Mysterious Ways....

I have been having just one of those "pity parties" for myself lately. SO much going on, so much to do, so much to deal with and just frankly tired of it all. So selfish and so willing to be just "sit and be ill" as I call it instead of "sit and be still" ;). I have shared my frustrations in prayer (which I know is totally healthy), and to myself thinking "why this" and "why that" for me and friends with burdens right now. I'm about ready to throw my hands up. I'm at the end up of my rope and in much prayer asking God to show me what to do and enlighten me on why do I think things are just so irritating right now?! As I've said before be careful what you pray for....
Then walks in the most precious woman at our office. She is beautiful inside and out and dressed so cute and ALL smiles. She is so friendly and never once does her smile leave her face or her gentle spirit leave the room in which she sits. Later, I find out this woman has NO family, I mean zilch,zero, nada. No children, all her siblings live in other states and she's 100% alone. Which saddens me as she seems so 'put together'. So I think wow~thats nice she can be that friendly and all smiles and look so fab. Then, I also learn that she is suffering from cancer. Immediately I do a double take and take a good look at her and notice other than her head being covered by a fashionable headpiece, she looks pretty darn good! So I reasses and think surely this woman who is so friendly all the while suffering from cancer must be in remission. Nope, she is terminal. Okay then, that hits me like a ton of bricks and why is she smiling so and so happy? She is all smiles, come to find out from our mutual friend, because of her great love for the Lord and the peace she gains from Him EVERY single day. Well then, holy cow, she can be jolly and I'm going to be pouty??(which I can do quite well);) I felt like an ant in the room with her. And remember, this woman is going through this with no family nearby, not a one! So here, this precious woman is showing God's love simply by her demenaor and I'm showing no love, and how do our two life issues compare?? You know the answer to that, they certainly don't! Sure, some of my "burdens" and "issues" that I'm praying for and about for me as well as others are pretty big deals, but none of my personal ones compare to hers whatsoever. And hmph! She's the one that has a smile on her face while I look stressed and irritated and I think I'm the one hanging on for dear life?? Made me think twice as you can imagine. I have pretty much gotten to the point of begging God to show favor on me, save me from things, help me see his light and be patient and loving and all those things. I pray this almost daily.....well buds, he delievered! He did just that today! He showed me by this precious, God loving woman. I actually got to converse with her and personally see His love overflowing from her. This woman faced with death around the corner, is joyful, smiles and not fearful in the least. I thanked Him for opening my eyes, but also remembered my prayers to Him, begging to be shown favor or good will which is the defintion of grace.........and guess what? As she slips out the door and on her way, I find out her name is what else, but Grace!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Are you ready for some Football?











As a Southern gal born and raised I love college football, as so many other "belles" do. I was ready for the season to start and had a fabulous opportunity this year to make it a HUGE gameday! I left at 6:30 in the morning for Athens on Saturday (that was sooo early for me but I was bright eyed and ready to go!) With a packed car full of good eats, dressed in gameday best, our crew arrived in Athens around 8:30 and had the best time cooking out and visiting until the kickoff at 12:30, with the new UGA VII presented right before that. It was HOT but a fun game and yes, I must say I was a traitor in true form......... I wore RED (gasp I know, I caught lots of heck for it!). Then after about the 4th quarter with the Dawgs in a comfortable lead, we made our way out of Athens and straight to Atlanta, stopping only to freshen up and change clothes that is from RED TO ORANGE. Yep, the next stop was the Georgia Dome for the much anticiapiated Clemson/Alabama matchup. ESPN's gameday was there and since I was meeting a best bud from college and her husband, who are huge clemson fans (and he a former player) I sported orange proudly. The seats were INCREDIBLE in the dome. This was a huge, hard-to- find ticket and our seats just happen to be 10 rows up in the dome~amazing!!! That kick off was at 8:30 which I was comfortably in my seat way before kickoff to take in the crowd and let me tell you~the crowd was fired up and full of spirit! It was great just to be a part of it in some fashion. The Tigers lost but it was still such a fun time with great friends! As non-stop as the day was it was THE way to kickoff College football season~2 college games in one day!! I made it to my bed at 11:45pm that night and was asleep as soon as I hit the pillow. So very exhuasting day but SO MUCH FUN!! Now, are you ready for some football???

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Happy Birthday to my Favorite Boy!






Well, my sweet, precious, loves his Aunt so, nephew Davis turned ONE this Monday the 25th! We had a family party this past Sunday with almost 30 people~just family in attendance! I was certain little man would cry when we sang Happy Birthday but as you can tell from the picture where he is getting his own cake he was clapping and laughing and we were singing! Granted, we sang for weeks before preparing him for this big day! He was great and loved the entire party! He got lots of super toys that amazed me. I personally hope his most favorite is the Sit and Bounce Zebra his Aunt gave him :). He was all smiles, played nicely and seemed to enjoy every minute of it. I am so blessed to have so many "children" in my life, that are just like family. But I have to say, there is nothing like having a sibling have one!!! And I cherish all the children I love and spend time with but I "crave" Davis time. I am so lucky to see him so often. I think he likes me, and the fact that I gave him potato chips and REAL coke last week for lunch has nothing to do with it. :) Or the fact that I read the Cookie Monster book 10 times in a row last week (none others would do). He's a joy to us and a blessing! He came at just the right time! God's timing is so good! He's been the biggest blessing to me this past year and I just cannot believe how far the two of us have grown the past year, he more physically and me more emotionally. :) I remember the day he arrived so vividly. He is one loved little boy! Thanks Shannon and Matt for making me an aunt, if you'd like to make me an aunt to 2, I'd be most appreciative :).

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Thankful Tuesday

I realize I've been MIA but I've had a horrible cold and have had to slow down my never-slow-life :). I even missed 2 concerts this week and various events, but I'm on the up and up and had a fabulous weekend back in the loop. :)

TUESDAY'S THANKFUL THIRTEEN~Totally random (almost) things I'm thankful for!

1. Tylenol Cold and Sinus medicine-brilliant!
2. Birthday Parties-Have 3 this weekend one of which is my nephew, Davis Gorman who turns ONE Monday & we celebrate Sunday!
3. The latest and greatest 11th and 12th grade girls at Noonday Baptist that I get to converse with, pray with and of course eat with each week :). Sunday School isn't as fun without doughnuts!
4. REAL COKE! It's my "coffee" and I hate anything diet!
5. Target~seriously can we not get anything we need there?
6. Pedicures~I'm so thankful for the poor souls that touch footies all day!
7. My front porch~so many fabulous talks and peaceful days/nights spent out there.
8. TIVO-I barely watch t.v. and I love TIVO! No commercials!
9. My Kroger Plus card-it always somehow makes me feel I've saved money :)
10. Mom's Love-she checks on me and let me spread my germs on her sofa (and in my old bed)last week) and... even made soup and grilled cheese-yummy!
11. Unlimited text messaging~if your number is in my phone you get this one :)
12. Dinner Parties~I love to have a true dinner party with fabulous friends and food! What more could ya want?
13. Summer Fashion~I LOVE summer dresses and shoes and I am trying to get all my white worn before Labor Day! I wore my favorite white dress yesterday & white suit today! (They get offended if they don't get one more wear before they are put up until Easter 2009!)

Happy Tuesday to all! Now that I'm out of my MIA status, I promise to post more~thanks for all your encouragement! :)

Monday, August 4, 2008

Sweetly Broken


Yesterday at a fabulous church service, we sang "Sweetly Broken" by Jeremy Riddle. For those that know me, you know I love me some church music! Ranging from good ol' Southern Gospel hymns, to the latest and greatest in Christian music, just anything that gets the spirit moving! I was so taken back by this song yesterday, it was one that 'hit home' like so many do. I realize over the past year, at different times, I've felt so broken, unfixable, unreachable and unlovable. Yet thankfully I serve a God that has restored, redeemed and loved me like none other could've done. I never would've wanted to title myself "broken" ...as if! I thought I was strong enough to conquer it all without being broken. Nope, not gonna get me. The only thing broken on me that could cause damage would be a heel on one of my fabulous recently purchased shoes..and that has happened and it's tragic (R.I.P Red pumps Fall Line of 07'). However, yesterday while worshipping and singing this song, it came to me, as if a gentle voice said "yes my dear you are broken, but not harshly,not viciously and not thrown to the wolves, you were and are sweetly broken." That makes all the difference in the world! That one word~sweetly! What an honor it is, I must say to be broken (now that I'm willing to admit it)! I have a best friend who says all the time (and she knows who she is) "Jen, you're not broken, you're bruised" she is so right in so many ways, but yesterday I wanted to dial her digits right there in church and tell her "But Bud I AM BROKEN and its awesome!" I know without a doubt, she'd 'get' what I was telling her, I, nor her, had ever looked at it this way! Yet, just as the song says 'he beckoned me at the cross, drew me to my knees and I am sweetly broken, wholly surrendered.' And what a priceless gift to have! I am thankful that I have been broken, its caused me to be living an out of control life, surrendered to him, not me and not my control.
Although heart wrenching, I am blessed to be talking to so many girls in similar situations and, try as I might to lift them up. It's humbling because it SHOWS me how much I’ve healed, it is AWESOME to say things to them and WHOLE HEARTEDLY mean them and tell them it WILL be okay and to share mistakes I made along the way. I look back at my prayer jounral in absolute awe! I see how broken I was/am and how beautifully and graciously He has restored me! With that said, I told one girl I wouldn’t trade a single tear, heartbreak, devastating day, loss of a life I knew, for the relationship I have now with Jesus. It's like the old, true southern gospel song "Wouldn't Trade Nothing For my Journey Now." And I wouldn't and I mean that. It's a privilege to have been broken and have experienced the peace that surpasses all understanding, the uncondtional love that abounds, and the grace He has given me.
Psalm 34:18~"The Lord is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit"
He is so near and so saves and does it oh so sweetly....

Monday, July 28, 2008

Doing the Charleston




Wow! What a fun weekend! I was blessed to spend the past weekend with my best college girlfriends. We try to get together once or twice a year (aside from wedding and baby showers) for a fun, girls getaway weekend. This year was no exception! We spent the weekend in Charleston dining on fabulous food, lounging on the beach and ending with a scrumptious brunch. There is so much "catching up" to do with all of us when we get together, so there was no moment of silence-whatsoever! I loved it! This circle of friends is a bit different than the earlier post, these are girls that have only known each other 10 years or so, but share an incredible bond of closeness that people think we'd never been apart in 30 years! We trudged through many of our 'growing pains' together. I think everyone on the trip lived with each other at some point or another, or close to it. We shared some of our best years together in school at Georgia Southern. At GSU it use to be so easy to go to Savannah, Hilton Head or any beach and take a quick getaway, we had no cares or responsiblities (thanks mom and dad!). And now, it takes a lot more effort to get everyone together for a weekend due to the simple fact of growing up! Especially since we're all spread out throughout the southeast, BUT YET, these girls all tend to find sitters, miss work and travel lengthy hours for our trips, which always leave us with crazy memories. It's awesome to think "Gosh, we really were together all the time at such important times in our lives, and how amazing and wonderful we are still together!" Thanks Alycia for hosting us in your gorgeous home and I can't wait til our next girls getaway. I remember back in college saying "I hope when we're 30 we're still great friends and going on trips together." This trip I left saying "I hope when we're 40 we're still great friends making time for trips together." I have no doubts we will....

Monday, July 21, 2008

Lifelong Friends


I am so blessed by all the WONDERFUL friends in my life. I am blessed to be in different "circles" of friends, with each circle providing true friendships and always fun times. Last night we celebrated Felicia's 29th birthday with a dinner at my house. The thing about this paticular group is these are the girls that know me better than I know myself. Most of us have known each other since FIRST OR SECOND GRADE!!! We are still the best of friends and have maintained great contact over the years. Most are amazed that we all still see each other and stay in touch, but I wouldn't trade these girls or this circle for ANYTHING.This is the group that gets together and your stomach hurts when the night's over because you have laughed SO HARD.
These are the girls that I've shared first days of school with, many slumber parties, so many ballgames (we could've taken any group on last night in softball, basketball or tennis game). We've shared our first dates, first proms, first jobs, Spring Breaks, annual Christmas parties and COUNTLESS birthdays together. We've since traded in our cleats for heels, our ball uniforms for wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses, our dates to husbands, school's to careers, babysitting to mommyhood, 13th birthday parties to 30th (yikes),the slumber parties to bridal and baby showers, best friend titles to Godmothers and maid of honors titles, church camp to "grown up" vacations, college roomates to homeowners, and among all the good, we've had some bad too. This group has been through some heartbreaking divorces, career changes, loss of grandparents, fertility struggles, surgeries and even cancer. But through it ALL, this is the group of girls that is tighter than you can imagine. We've all seen each other cry and have shared countless tears throughout the years but more laughs than one can imagine!! When an obstacle arises these are the girls that are immediately on the phone and email and call the "crew" to figure out how to help. This group has an unshakeable, unbreakable bond that amazes most. We don't just say we'll "be there for you" this group IS there for you in EVERY way...meals, gifts, a phone call, a sweet email, a card, crying with you and praying with you and for you. God put us together many years ago and we've leaned on one another so much the past twenty-three years, YES 23! We've shared the biggest events life has together~every single one of them for each lady. It's an honor to know each and every one of these ladies. They are a blessing to me in so many ways. They hold me accountable, they pray for me, and they are there for me everyday. They keep me going, I'd like to think we all keep each other going. :) " How truly truly blessed am I to have these friendships.
"Oil and perfume rejoice the heart; so does the sweetness of a friend's counsel that comes from the heart." Proverbs 27: 9
My heart must be doused in oil and perfume because these friend's counsel through the years has been overflowing. Love to each of you from the bottom of my heart.

Friday, July 11, 2008

New Beginnings....



Hello everyone! My name is Davis! This is me and my Aunt Jennifer, in the picture above, right after I was born! This picture was taken 10 months ago (yes, it's almost my birthday- but mom says that is a post for a different day) and it was the start of a new beginning for both of us! My aunt had been through some rough times prior to my arrival and her heartbreaking divorce was finalized a few weeks after I was born! I haven't known her for long but let me be the first to tell you she is beautiful, funny, a lover of the color pink, graceful in life (but not on her feet), and a reflection of God the Father! I learned at a very early age by watching her that often when faced with a big obstacle, like climbing a mountain, God will use this opportunity to draw you closer to Him (even if it means he has to carry you because you have ridiculous high heels on- which let me assure you- 9 times out of 10 my Aunt Jennifer does)! Thus the name of this blog...

I'm hoping that this blog will serve as a chronicle of the works God has done in her life, and that she will share all sorts of other information (where to get the best shoe sale, things that make her smile, what music she's listening to, and most importantly what she's getting her super cute nephew for his upcoming birthday)! There is a lot to learn and I know you will love her almost as much as my mommy and I do- So without further delay I will leave the rest of the blogging up to my Aunt Jennifer. Enjoy! ~DAVIS

"Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for His
compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your
faithfulness. I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him."
~Lamentations 3:22-24 (NIV)