If you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, "Move from here to there," and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. ~Matthew 17:20

Friday, May 30, 2014

People Drive Me Crazy!

When we are in Los Angeles, I EXPECT people to be rude and drive like they just robbed a bank and are evading the police.  It is a given that in a city of 3.82 million people, getting from place to place will be challenging.

But, when I come to Little Rock, I expect to drive with respectful drivers who are patient and friendly.  Is that unreasonable?  It's how I remember it before we left for LA.  Well, that has not been the case this week as Cole has gotten behind the wheel to practice driving before he gets his license.  I have gotten so mad at drivers that I am now thinking he would be safer driving in LA.  I am also considering buying a horn that sounds like a machine gun and installing a mechanism that allows my head lights to drop down and RPG's (rocket propelled grenades) to shoot out at chosen targets.

Since we live in Ferndale, I thought Kanis road would be a perfect place for Cole to cut his teeth behind the wheel.  With a 45 mph speed limit and a windy road, it is quiet with no traffic lights and perfect for cruising.  The only problem is that every day this week, we have encountered "Bubba" who must have been in a hurry to get to his fishing hole so he feels the need to tail gate and flash his lights because Cole is driving the speed limit.  Or, Mr. BMWr man who yelled out his window at Cole because Cole was cautious and waited until there were no cars coming before pulling out into traffic.  Makes my blood boil!

I was so mad last night that I made these signs to put on the back of our car but Brad thought they were a bad idea.
 In Australia, they have special license plates to indicate that driver's  are driving with a permit or have less than 200 hours driving experience.  Honestly, it makes perfect sense to me.

So, while I try to stay calm and not teach Cole any words he should not be using, I am wondering how in the world my mother survived while teaching me to drive.  I knew she had nerves of steel but I am realizing now that she is really Super Woman and she must tuck her cape into her jeans so I can't see it.

If you see a black Toyota Highlander on the Arkansas roads with a cute young man at the wheel and a passenger that looks like she escaped from the local mental hospital, please be polite, say a prayer and call me for a Girl's Night Out.  I am going to need it!

I am considering the advice that Spencer gave me; when life hands you lemons, freeze the lemons and then throw them at people.  Seems like the only logical thing to do.  

"Be for me a great rock of safety..."
~Psalm 31:2

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Saying Goodbye to Rusty

Fourteen years ago on a cold January morning, I drove to Magnolia, Arkansas in response to an ad in the newspaper about Golden Retriever puppies.  The owner was the Forest Ranger for the Southwest Arkansas area and he and his wife owned both the mom and dad of the litter of puppies.  Fourteen puppies to be exact and each one was the fluffiest butterball I have ever seen.  I sat in the middle of the yard and they crawled all over me, each one trying to entice me to "pick me!".  I finally settled on the runt of the litter who was busy trying to bite his brothers and sisters during my entire visit.  The owner's tied a blue ribbon around his neck with the name "Ewing" proudly written in sharpie and I left knowing that in three weeks I would be back to claim our newest "baby".
We named him Rusty and he was immediately the center of our family.  We have had a lot of dogs during our 23 years of marriage but this one was the best.  Every day, he gave us
a smile that would brighten our day;

unconditional love;

patience and understanding;

everything we could ever want.

Rusty was diagnosed with nose cancer a year ago and as the cancer progressed, we all agreed we didn't want him to suffer.  On Tuesday, Brad and Spencer took him to the vet and Dr. Peck gave him pain meds to keep him comfortable until Cole and I could make it home on Saturday to say our good byes.  But Rusty must have known the end was near and after his dinner on Wednesday night, he wandered off and Brad couldn't find him.  Brad and Spencer searched for two days, they alerted the neighbors and scoured the woods around our house and on Thursday night, our next door neighbors found him on their property.  Brad said it looked like he had found a place to get comfy and had fallen asleep and died in his sleep.  

We are having him cremated and will bury his ashes in his favorite place on our property, while Brad is making him a cross.  It has been such an emotional weekend but I know that Rusty knew he was loved and treasured by all of us.

"God said, 'Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds...'"
~Genesis 1:24

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Being a Mom is _______________________.

I honestly do not think that the English language offers enough adjectives to describe a mom; loving, beautiful, thoughtful, helpful, self-sacrificing.  Honestly, the list is endless.

Since Mother's Day was last Sunday, it really got me to thinking about all the ways Mom's make a difference in our lives.  Whether we have a Mom still in our lives, or we are a Mom to our own kiddos, or we are a Mom to four-legged children, nieces, nephews, or friends' children, being a Mom is a HUGE blessing.  But, some days, the word "blessing" is not the first word that comes to my mind.

On Monday, I saw the movie "Mom's Night Out" and I wish all of my girl friends could see this movie.  First of all, it is hysterically funny without using any bad language.  Next, the actors do a great job of portraying what life is like between a husband and wife and how our little idiosyncrasies affect every aspect of our lives.  And, last but not least, it sends the message that yes we are Mom's but NO we are not meant to be Super Moms 24/7 or even 1 minute out of an entire 24 hour period.

I went to see this movie by myself and I laughed until I cried.  It was so refreshing to see a movie that was real.  I loved it.

It also made me think about all my girl friends that bless my life every single day.  I honestly have the BEST friends ever!  I love that for no reason, I will get a text or an email telling me how much I am loved or how much I am missed or even a cute story about what their dog/cat did (my friends know that I love my animals more almost as much as I love my boys).  I love sitting and talking with my friends who can laugh with me when I tell them about some crazy shenanigans that happened during my morning walk.  But most of all, I love it when God uses my friends to help me solve a problem that has been plaguing me and making me lose sleep.  That is really the best!

When I was growing up, I never dreamed of being a wife and a mom.  I guess I always thought I would be horrible at it so I dreamed of a job that would take me to New York City where I would live in a high rise, have a dog and a cat and go to see plays on Broadway.  I am so glad that God had other plans for me because I can not imagine my life without Brad, Spencer and Cole.

I remember someone telling me that being a mom would be the most rewarding and the most challenging job I would ever have, and they were right.  I wouldn't have it any other way.

"Who can find a virtuous and capable wife?  She is worth more than precious rubies.  Her husband can trust her, and she will greatly enrich his life.  She will not hinder him but help him all her life."
~Proverbs 31:10

Monday, May 5, 2014

Hello Downtown LA!

When our friends, Roxie and Eve, offered to sublet us their apartment for the month of May, I jumped at the chance because a) it's a beautiful and spacious pre-war apartment with high ceilings and awesome hardwood floors, and b) it was much less expensive than Burbank Extended Stay.  We have been here for one week and although it took us a couple of days to get used to the quietness (no room mates), we are loving having a place to ourselves.

The apartment is down town LA...I mean smack in the middle of down town.  It's our first experience of living in the metropolis because for the past 2+ years we have lived in either Burbank or Studio City and both have the small-town feel of Little Rock.  Down town living is quite different; every one seems to be in a hurry to catch the bus or the subway, it's dirtier and it is VERY noisy.  However, with all that said, our location is very convenient to so many activities, everyone in our apartment complex is super nice and EVERY ONE has a dog or cat!! 
I love listening to the fountain at night when I have my windows open.

We have been on set for long hours so today was my first day to have a chance to walk/run in our new neighborhood.  I should say that I exercise like I do everything else; quickly, boisterously and with a lot of teeth showing (either while smiling or cringing).  So, I'm pretty sure that I scared the living daylights out of 90% of the morning commuters as I yelled, "GOOD MORNING!" when I passed them on the sidewalk.  One lady grabbed her purse like I was trying to rob her!  I did stop and apologize but I don't think she understood my Southern English.  I tried to contain my laughter until I was out of earshot.  Poor lady.  Maybe tomorrow they not be as surprised. :)

Katrina came to set today to step in as Cole's guardian, while I went to a meeting.  I am so blessed by this beautiful lady, both with being able to work with her and to be able to call her my friend.

"Don't forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!"
~Hebrews 13:2 

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Missing It All

As I sit here tonight watching the sun set and thinking of my day, I am missing these loves in my life:

Love this man with all my heart and can't imagine my life without him.

Love Skyping with this young man every day but it's not the same as seeing him in person.

This beautiful lady has been gone since 2009 but I still think of her every day.  She was the BEST mother-in-law ever.

My beautiful Gigi (with new friends she made on her trip to Dallas) who is spunkier and more beautiful at 90 years young than I will ever be.

My AMAZING mom who sends me funny pictures and inspiring scriptures every day and who loves me and supports me no matter what.

My beautiful brother, niece and nephew who make me laugh all the time.  Can't wait to hug and kiss on them all.

Sitting on this deck and watching the sun set with Brad.

I love all my family and I am counting the days until we get back to Arkansas.

"Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be."
~Matthew 7:21