Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving praise

In honor of Thanksgiving, and reflecting on the undeserved blessings in my life that keep me going day after day and fill me with ample joy, I came across this weighty reflection by C.S. Lewis on the Psalms. It reminds me of the most important thing in my life that I often neglect to show gratitude or praise for...

"But the most obvious fact about praise – whether of God or anything – strangely escaped me. I thought of it in terms of compliment, approval, or the giving of honour. I had never noticed that all enjoyment spontaneously overflows into praise. The world rings with praise – lovers praising their mistresses [Romeo praising Juliet and vice versa], readers their favourite poet, walkers praising the countryside, players praising their favourite game – praise of weather, wines, dishes, actors, motors, horses, colleges, countries, historical personages, children, flowers, mountains, even sometimes politicians or scholars. . . . Except where intolerably adverse circumstances interfere, praise almost seems to be inner health made audible. . . . I had not noticed either that just as men spontaneously praise whatever they value, so they spontaneously urge us to join them in praising it: 'Isn't she lovely? Wasn't it glorious? Don't you think that magnificent?' The Psalmists in telling everyone to praise God are doing what all men do when they speak of what they care about."

We praise what we care about.

Worship of God is showing our enjoyment of Him. I have no problem laughing at something funny, smiling around someone or something I love, gushing about how wonderful a certain friend is, or cheering at a stadium (I'm actually pretty reserved here, but I'm married to a loud mouth in the stands so I'll add it). BUT, I want to enjoy God in this same way. Enjoy His scripture, His presence, and His promises and blessings in the same way I enjoy food, sports, nature... or shopping. Call me cheesy, but these are my thoughts today, and this is what I'm going to focus on this week as school starts back up.

Hope everyone had a blessed Thanksgiving!

"You have made known to me the path of life; In your presence is fullness of joy; In your right hand are pleasures forevermore."
Psalm 16:11

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A late post about Wurstfest

SOO, we went to something called Wurstfest. Heard of it? Jody, being from New Braunfels and adoring his home town, thrives on opportunities to visit good ole NB. I'm a fan too.

Wurstfest  aka "Sausage festival"

If you are not aquainted with this lovely, 50 year old party, here it is: "A unique celebration rich in German culture and full of Texas fun located in beautiful New Braunfels, Texas! Enjoy good fun, food, special events and the finest in Alpine and Bavarian Style Entertainment."

REALLY... thousands of people gathering along the Comal River celebrating their lack of German heritage in a German created town spending more money than they should on beer, more beer, interesting / disturbing / hilarious costumes (see pictures below), and rocking out to really loud music.

What I loved the most about it obviously revolved around food (And of course people watching extreme) had the most delectable foods OF MY LIFE. Dozens of  booths offering well more than 100 kinds of food, from fried Oreos to goulash, funnel cakes, sausage balls and potato pancakes with apple sauce on top. Uh-mazing. I recommend going, if not for this reason alone.

For those who know about Wursfest, the most important part of the entire celebration are the prestigious men and women of NB who dress up as opa and opas, ("Grandparents") and volunteer to help out with the 120,000 + attendees. I know a couple of Jody's friends (Uh hem, SEAN) have making opa status a life goal.

Apparently it's quite a big deal in South Texas. Jody has gone every year since 6th grade I believe?? A German celebration / loud, fun music / The greatest food found in the state of Texas. We had a blast with my cousin Daley, and I'm thankful for being introduced to this tradition my husband loves so much.

Daley, Chelsea and me.
Jody's favorite people to go to Wurstfest with. Love his sweet parents.

How could I forget! We also ran in the Wurst-run that morning... By the look on Jody's face, you can guess who won. :) Of course he has his own story but.... That's all I'm going to say. (We're not competitive at all....)

Monday, November 8, 2010

If you dont' know me by now...

I keep seeing these "100 things" blog posts popping up, so I thought I would do one as well... some of these might surprise you!
Jody's "100 things" will be coming shortly. Or maybe "10 things."

100 things:

1. Amy Grant was, and still is my favorite.  Specifically, "House of Love" and "Songs From The Loft." My cousin Daley and I have this in common.

2. I'm OCD about the STRANGEST things. Ask Jody... If only I was OCD about a clean kitchen or bathroom. If only.

3. I am completely terrible at hand-eye coordination sports. i.e. golf, tennis, softball...

4. In college I never thought I'd say this, but I really miss playing basketball.

5. If I could be one place right now, I'd be in Greece. And I'm not ashamed to admit that this desire pretty much stemmed out of my viewing of Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants pt. 2.

6. I wish I could be Faith Hill's friend.

7. My 6th Grade kiddos say something hilarious, without meaning to be funny, every single day. One of the many reasons 6th grade is a blast to teach.

8. I wish Jody was out of law school so we could have a baby. TMI?

9. I might be the worst singer of our lifetime, and if I don't know the words to a song, I'll make up my own, much more creative, lyrics.

10. When I was little, I read for hours every day. Anne of Green Gables was my favorite. I probably read it ten times.

11. My favorite season usually depends on whatever is right now. So, Fall is my favorite. I'm a lover of change.

12. I still love to read and wish I more had time for it.

13. I have a bad case of undiagnosed ADD. Wish means, at all times I'm in the middle of 3 or 4 books.

14. I'm not a fan of tattoos.

15. Halloween is my least favorite holiday.

16. My friend Abby and I used to be obsessed with gymnastics, and wanted to go to the Olympics, and be like Shannon Miller. I'd be the tallest gymnast ever.

17. I'm a twin. With Kalee. And I love her more than anything in the world.

18. I had a horrendous amount of bangs growing up. Thanks mom.

19. I have a unibrow. Kinda. I have one solid hair that always pops up right in between my eyes. I somehow don't ever notice it until it's either pointed out to me by my laughing husband, or it's long enough to be extremely noticable.

20. It's stressful at times, but I absolutely love my job.

21. I wish I could re-run my whole wedding weekend. It just went by way too fast.

22. Christmas is my favorite holiday. Possibly because of the Amy Grant Christmas CD?

23. I'm not a foodie. If you ask me about a restaurant, I'll probably tell you I liked it. And I think most food is GOOOOD.

24. I could eat Mexican food everyday. Or Sharky's.

25. I was sent to the principles office in 4th Grade.

26. My mom was my 4th Grade teacher. She wasn't the one who sent me to the office...

27. I've never really been a dog person, but Jody is hoping to change my mind so we can get two great danes whenever we get a house... someday. We'll see.

28. We haven't had cable since moving to Dallas. Thank the Lord for Hulu. The Office, Modern Family and Glee are our favorites.

29. Sometimes I refer to ACU as a cult (lovingly of course), but I absolutely adored my ACU days more than anything. I hope my kids want to go there someday.

30. I miss college.

31. My grandparents were "Mr. And Ms. ACU."

32. I'm not very domestic, but I want more than anything to be a pro at cooking, sewing and crafty projects. I need to take some lessons or something.

33. I have the baby name app on my iphone and already have my list narrowed down.

34. Jody secretly loves when I talk about babies, baby names, etc. He would never admit it.

35. I tried to dye my hair brown last year. Didn't work out so well. My students informed me it was more of a seaweed color and wanted to know when I was going to dye it back blonde.

36. I've developed a severe case of claustrophobia in the last year or so.

37. Traffic and crowds kind of stress me out sometimes. Maybe that's why I love Graham so much.

38. I love writing / receiving notes.

39. I can be forgetful. If I neglect to call or email you back, forgive me. And try again.

40. I wanted to go to the Kanakuk Institute after college.

41. I usually assume the best.

42. In my ideal world, I would live in the same neighborhood as my family, or girlfriends from college.

43. Sour straws and swedish fish are my favorite candies.

44. If you received a wedding invitation from us, you realized that we have the most TEXAN names. ( I refuse to say hick). Judd Jody and Kristee Sue.

45. Because of this, we should probably give very sophisticated names to our children. I'll look into it on my app.

46. I wake up at 5 o'clock most mornings.

47. I think I would love teaching elementary and coaching High School. Inconvenient.

48. I played 5 sports in High School.

49. I love Jesus, which makes me a Christian. But Christians confuse / annoy me a lot sometimes.

50. Large hoodie sweatshirts are my fav.

51. I can't wait for us to own a house.

52. Breakfast is my favorite meal to eat at a restaurant.

53. I probably won't decorate my house for Christmas until we have kids.

54. When I laugh really, really hard... it's not pretty. I usually slobber.

55. I can usually fall asleep any time, any place.

56. But I wish I could make myself go to bed early.

57. I love going to weddings.

58. For some reason, talk radio is very entertaining to me.

59. Sometimes I wish we lived in Abilene.

60. I have the greatest cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents in the world.

61. I love grammar, but I always get confused between then and than.

62. Salty is better then (than) sweet.

63. I wish I wasn't a pack rat. I'm admitting it, I get too emotionally invested in "stuff."

64. I'm 5'11. Jody is 6'3. We wear sizes 11 and 13 shoes. I'm guessing we will have some pretty large, but cute, children with ginormous feet.

65. Jody and I both have football coaching dads. One of the many reasons we love the fall.

66. I love picture frames, books, and shelves.

67. I love music. Thankfully, I've matured out of my "I only listen to country" days.

68. I snack. A lot.

69. Rain makes me happy.

70. I want to run a marathon with my mom (who will probably beat me.)

71. I wish I was a really good writer like my friend Lauren. When I was little, I wanted to be an author. I think that would be such an ideal job. I'm willing to say, that's not my gift.

72. I love everything about being married.

73. I'm a blog stalker more than I am a facebook stalker.

74. Loose leaf tea is my favorite.

75. I would like to have friends over for dinner more often.

76. I lived in Orange County, California for a year and wish I would have taken more advantage of the ocean.

77. Road trips are also my favorite. Lots of great memories.

78. I love company, and I absolutely love dinners that drift for hours...

79. I've never had braces or glasses. I tried to lie on an eye test in 6th grade because I REALLY wanted glasses / contacts.

80. I'm very proud of my Marine Brother who is going to Embassy Duty Training in January. He is such a stud.

81. I talk to my mom everyday.

82. My American Girl of choice: Samantha, of course.

83. To say I get lost a lot is an understatement.

84. I would love to travel more.

85. I can't remember the last time I wore shoes with a heel.

86. I'm perfectly comfortable speaking in front of Middle School students, but I freak out a little when I'm speaking and there are adults in the room. I wish I was a better speaker.

87. If I'm taking on a new craft / project, I really need my friend Becca to be there to make sure I'm going it right. Too bad she lives 3 hours away.

88. I'd rather be cold than hot.

89. I was born in Amarillo, and most of my extended family lives there. I could live in Amarillo.

90. I hope I get to coach my kids someday. And I hope they like sports.

91. My weeks are kind of exhausting, so there is nothing I love more then a lazy, relaxing, Saturday / Sunday afternoon. I wish I hated doing nothing. But I don't. I love it WAY too much.

92. We want 4 or 5 kids, and possibly adopt?

93. Jody takes care of all things money in our household. Thank goodness I got married when I did.

94. I love spending time in coffee shops, but Jody is not a fan of coffee or coffee shops.

95. I can't wait to meet little June Jeffrey.

96. My husband and I dated for four months before getting engaged.

97. When I played basketball for ACU, Jody loved to yell at the refs if they made a bad call. Embarrassing.

98. I have a deep admiration for people who do ministry in foreign countries.

99. Constant complainers annoy me like none other.

100. My favorite book at the moment is "Crazy Love" by Francis Chan. So simple, but so incredibly profound.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Chip's story

"He is before all things and in Him all things hold together." 
                           Colossians 1:17

I wanted to share this incredible story of faith and the power of God's sovereignty. Warning: get ready to shed a few tears.
This is a video of a man named Chip Bloecher. He and his family go to church with some of our good friends. Chip suffered from a heat stroke at a Dallas Cowboy's game, ended up in a hopeless coma and well... you just need to watch.

Some might choose to call this a medical miracle, but there is no doubt in my mind this was the Lord showing his divinity, his power, and his unfailing love.

Thousands were on their knees praying for this precious man. Thousands were begging for God to spare his life, that he might be a testament to the goodness and grace of the Lord. Thousands were believing that the God we serve is big enough to conquer anything in our world. And He did. He chose to save Chip.

I know this family would have kept their faith if Chip would have lost his life. They would still believe that God is all good, all perfect and all loving no matter what. That even in tragedy, all things work for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose.
In tragedy or in celebration, God is still good.

But what an encouraging story of celebration this is!! I love the way Chip's wife is literally jumping for joy at the end of the video.

Oh yeah, and Chip's daughter's name is Hope. :)

For the righteous will never be moved;
he will be remembered forever.
He is not afraid of bad news;
his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD.
His heart is steady;
he will not be afraid,
until he looks in triumph on his adversaries.

Psalm 112:6 - 8

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fear the frying pan

First post from the husband:

Marriage comes with a steep learning curve, plain and simple. I have been happily married for over a year and I wouldn’t change a second of it. I have a beautiful, loving, and caring wife who takes care of a child, me. (I estimate that my age of household maturity is around 13, but others would venture much higher because I have facial hair.) However, learning at that age, or any age after a year of marriage, can be a difficult task.

My father is a physics/chemistry teacher at the magnificent New Braunfels High School, and he tells all of his students different stories in order for them to easily remember certain concepts. This one in particular was entitled “Respect the Laws of Physics.” The cliff note version begins with my mom slaving over the hot stove in order to prepare a meal for my dad. Unsatisfied with the finished product, my father commented, as if a judge on Iron Chef America (not the Japanese Version), on the lack of flavor and presentation. Unbeknownst to him, my mother had been through a tough day and was not prepared for the criticism. Overflowing with righteous anger, she threw a frying pan at my father. Luckily only minimal damage was done, and the only relevance to physics was that heavy things thrown at you hurt.

As my father imparted this wisdom to me, I must have somehow forgotten its moral. No, Kristee has not yet hurled any blunt objects in my direction, but she should have. Kristee would bust it for an hour in the kitchen, and for some reason I would question the amount of sauce on the chicken. It was as if I was the fat judge telling Bobby Flay how to cook, and I can’t stand that guy. Thinking to myself, this is constructive criticism that is helping her tremendously. Realistically, she should have thrown a frying pan at me. I thank God I married a patient woman. She gave me the time to grow up and realize the bigger picture. She sacrifices so many things on a daily basis just to make my life a little bit easier.

At the beginning of our marriage my wife didn't like to cook, wonder why? Salads were her go to dish. As the year has progressed, she has blown me away with her cooking ability. Homemade brownies the other day, amazing! Each night she is trying something different, and I take credit for this new passion. My silence is truly golden. All in all, my wife is not afraid of the frying pan, and my diet no longer consists of a steady stream of muchacos from Taco Bueno.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Happy Bday Jody!

Guess what? Yesterday was this guy's birthday!!

Jody is my favorite person in the world, and the greatest husband. I can't believe we've been married for more than a year! It truly felt like love at first sight.... well second sight. I wanted to marry Jody within a week of getting to know him. Just ask Jordan or Ashley. I became the ACU girl I loved making fun of. I mean, who gets married right after college?? I cannot tell you how much JOY this boy has brought to my life. Everyday with him is fun, and everyday is something I look forward to. 

Jody, here are some things I absolutely love about you:

You are kind.
You love me.
You are so much fun to be around.
You believe in "us."
You value my opinions.
You care deeply.
You are consistent and prayerful.
You seek your wisdom from the Lord alone.
You are goofy and don't take life too seriously.
You love to dance (See picture below.)
You are going to make for an unbelievable dad someday.
You live each day striving to be the person God created you to be.

There is nobody in the world who makes me laugh harder than you (well, you and my dad.)

You are the biggest blessing in my life. Happy birthday Jody!!! 

Monday, September 6, 2010

Just a thought.

Searching for wisdom, and pursuing it in God's word. This is convicting....
"If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless."
:: James 1: 26 ::
... James is not playing around. "His religion is worthless." Ineffective. Meaningless. Rejected. Nothing. In other words, if we don't love people enough to watch what we say and how we say it... we are not truly following Christ. Christianity in our hearts and our lives is futile. 
I'm hoping these words resonate deeply in my own heart this week and praying that somehow I will learn to think before I speak. No matter what.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Bob D

Jody and I are blessed with pretty phenomenal people on both sides of our family. Men and women who are much wiser, not as dorky, and way more hilarious than we could ever be. Two of the people that bless us tremendously are my grandparents, Bob and Myrt Davidson. Grandad and Mimi. We got to spend the weekend with them in Graham, and were reminded how lucky we are to have them in our lives. They are over 80, have tons of energy and really are a blast to be around!

 Specifically, during this season of my life, I am blessed to see the rare and incredible love they have for each other. Their marriage is inspiring. I've never seen a man pursue a woman like my grandpa STILL pursues his wife. He holds her hand everywhere they go, opens doors for her, shows patience in every circumstance, encourages her, is very intentional in putting her desires above his own and is always bragging on what a phenomenal woman she is. He sits two inches from her side, holding her hand tight, and it tugs my heart deeply to see how they love each other year in and year out.

If any of my thousands of readers have ever met this man, they know he has A LOT of stories to tell. Stories of traveling the world, stories of his 5 kids, 12 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren, stories of sports, stories of mission and of Christ, stories of struggle and triumph, stories of preaching and of people he loves. He loves telling stories, and some of my favorite ones are about the love of his life. I mean, this man proposed to her through the mail from across the country, freaked out thinking she would say no, and tried to get the letter back from the post office! Luckily, after receiving the letter, she quickly made the long distance call from Abilene to New York to tell him yes and ease his mind. How great of a story is that?!
There is no doubt these two were plagued with struggle and tough times in their journey. When they were our age, they were living in a foreign country, unable to consistently communicate with their family or friends... I can't even imagine. They've never been 'prosperous' so to say, but it never mattered to them. The way these two love each other and the Lord is inspiring. They are historically content and have a passion for ministry that I so desire. Christ has a lot work to do in my heart and I have a lot of selfishness I need to let go. I'm going to try and serve my husband well this week. You can ask Jody how that goes...

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Ash and Jor

Two of my favorite, I mean absolute FAVORITE girls had birthdays this past week.

These girls have brought so much happiness, laughter and joy into my life. Most of my favorite memories from college involve one of these two or both. Their personalities aren't exactly alike, but they are both absolute goof balls, who love life yet don't take the small things too seriously, who love to seize opportunities for a good time, but also love the occasion for a weekend long movie marathon ( as anti-social as this is, I LOVE it). These girls seek the Lord with honesty and integrity, challenge me in my walk, are loyal and trustworthy friends, look really good without make up (seek picture below), married AWESOME guys that I just adore, are terrible at anything involving karaoke (ok, that's just ashley), and make me laugh constantly when we're together. They were pretty much perfect roommates in college, and I wouldn't trade them for anybody... excpet Jody. I'm so blessed to call them best friends.

Ashley and Jordan, your friendship makes my life better for so many reasons. Don't know what I would do without you.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Here goes...

We're the Walkers. This is our blog. It's only a blog. It's meant to capture our memories, record funny stories, discuss political rants perhaps if Jody is posting :), but more importantly we will write about the good times, the not so good times, and the ways we are being molded as we struggle to figure out, and live out, the Lord's desire for our lives.

Some of my good friends would be considered pro-bloggers (shoutout Elsie and Becca.) I also stalk some lucky women online whose blogs are hilarious and/or inspiring. Their blogs ALWAYS capture my attention and leave me with mixed feelings... 1.) wanting more and more of their words to pop up on my computer screen because it makes my heart happy and 2.) desperately jealous of their creativity skills and wishing I was more like them. Because of our boring, no... content lives, this blog for sure won't match up with any of these impressive ladies. We just don't have that much going on. But it's not meant for everybody, just those who wish to follow our lives. I'll do the best I can ok??

We plan to both contribute to this blog, and unlike many other things in my life, I will try to stick with this. Not that I would ever leave something unfinished (eh hem, like my shared, halfway painted bedroom in college.) Right Jordan?

I'm so excited to be a part of this little bloggy world! Ok, I'm going to go do something important...