Sunday, August 29, 2010


Wow.  What a week.  I'm not sure where to start.  I'll begin here: For the past several weeks or possibly even couple of months, I have been going through a drought.  I am dry and have not been seeking God.  I have been going through a spiritual drought.  I haven't been on any sort of radical path of destruction, but I have been merely living.  Getting by day to day, with no interaction with God.  Lately, since school has started back, I feel overwhelmed, like I have no time for anything.  Last Sunday, I talked with one of my good friends, Joy Petty, and we decided to get together on Tuesday for coffee and to talk about life and to get advice from things that have come up in my blog.  From Sunday through Tuesday, I began to pray to God that He would speak to me and help me with work and to speak to me through Joy.  (I don't see how you could teach prek and not be a Christian.  It is HARD.) I also began to pray that God would give me direction into how to go about spending time with Him throughout the week.  I never feel like I have the time.  I decided that I would get up early before school Monday morning and take some time to pray.

Monday morning alarm came.  I hit the snooze.  I had missed it.  I thought my sleep was more important I guess.  So then I knew my day was jammed full.  I would not have time for prayer or Bible study today.  Then, after school that day, something happened that ONLY God could do.  My prek classroom, as I have told you, is packed full of stuff.  A lot of it I don't need.  So I decided to load up a bunch of the stuff in my car, drive to the back of the school, and see if the prek shed had any room in it (since my garage clearly doesn't.)  It had a little room in it, so I unloaded all the stuff and went to drive back around the school.  (One way road behind the school.)  As I started to come around the back of the building, I realized there was a forever long line of cars blocking the way out of the school.  Apparently chorus parents were there to pick up their kids.  Quickly, I decided to put it in reverse to see if I could find another way out.  Too late.  Cars were already lining up behind me.  I was stuck with a million things that I needed to get done.  Figuring I was gonna be there a while, I reached for my phone to call Adam and talk to him for a while.  I did not have my phone.  This has pretty much never happened before.  I left my phone in my classroom cause I  knew I would be coming right back.  I realized right away that this was an opportunity from God.  Even though I had neglected Him earlier, I was getting another chance.  I prayed right there in the car rider line.  I was so excited that I had received interaction from God.  It was amazing.  I hadn't spent time with Him in a long time.  I was so happy to know God hadn't forgotten me.

Then Tuesday night I met with Joy.  I enjoy talking to her so much.  I shared some of the things I've been going through lately.  She gave me a solution to all of it that I didn't see coming.  Get in the Word.  Read.  Daily.  Many times a day.  Ignore the messages of the world, and read what God says.  It sounds simple.  I wish it were.  Why is it so easy to try everything else but read God's word?  Sometimes I feel like I would rather read a "self help" book, look things up online, talk to other Christian girls, etc.  But why can't I just read the Bible?  It's great to do all those other things, but my first resource should be God and His Word.  I decided that was what I needed to do. 

So the next morning, I got up and read my Bible.  I started in the back of the Bible, looking up key words such as "Patience" (for my prek kids and daily life).  I looked up the verses and wrote some of them down.  I prayed that God would help me in this area.  I planned to continue to through the week getting up every morning and reading the Word.  I got sick, and my plan failed. 

What I needed (besides reading God's Word) was to have Him pierce my heart again.  My heart had become cold to Him and indifferent.  I wish I had known that was part of what I needed, because then I would have prayed for it.  But God knew anyway.  This morning in church a friend sang the song "Not Guilty."  That song pierced my heart like you wouldn't believe!!  It was just what God wanted me to hear.  It reminded me of WHY I should spend time with Him, what He has done for me, and the kindness, mercy, and PATIENCE He has shown me.  If you haven't heard this song, listen to it. 

I sat there in the pew crying.  That song is so powerful.  I needed to be reminded of those lyrics.  I couldn't wait to spend time privately worshipping and praying to God.  I'm so thankful to God for putting it on Melody's heart to sing that this morning.  It was amazing.  PRAISE GOD!  KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS!!!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

We Love ALDI!!!!!

Today Adam and I went to Aldi.  Why have we not been to Aldi sooner??!?!!!  Oh my goodnes, we saved

soooo much money!!!  I have been trying to do couponing, but I honestly cannot keep up with the sales, remembering to buy the Sunday paper or get it from someone, etc.  I know there is but I didn't even have enough time to check that and plan my grocery list.  So I have heard a few people say that Aldi saves you money, but I really didn't think it would be that big a deal.  I mean, how much could it really save you?  Well, let me tell you.  Adam and I would spend $140 at Ingles on a "stock up" trip.  That's what we call it when we basically are down to nothing.  That price is using the Ingles Advantage Card.  But we went to Aldi today and did a stock up trip......keep reading for how much we paid :)

This is what we bought.  Now, it may not look like a ton.  But this is the stuff Adam and I eat on a regular basis.  We try to eat pretty healthily, and healthy food is EXPENSIVE!!!

This is Diet Dr. Dazzle (which I mistakingly keep calling Diet Dr. "Drizzle, lol), lean ground turkey meat, one pound of turkey lunch meat, salmon skewers (salmon with veggies on a skewer for grilling), turkey dogs, turkey bacon (did I mention we like turkey?), strawberries, bananas, whole grain chips, Bran Flakes cereal, Cinnamon Crunch cereal, Fit and Active (their healthy brand) pepperoni pizza calzones, Grilled Chicken Strips (already grilled, just have to heat them up), blueberries, 2 boxes of peanut butter chocoloate chip granola bars (only 100 calories per bar!), a dozen eggs, 6 yogurts, Fiesta dip made in their deli (black beans, salsa, sour cream, cheese, and guacamole..spell check....soo good!), Fit and Active whipped topping, a half gallon of green tea with honey, four cans of fruit, spaghetti sauce, and paper plates. 

LOTS of healthy stuff!  $140 at Ingles.....but at Aldi......$58!!!!!  Ohhhh yes!  I was so excited!  That Ingles trip did not even include some of the meat we got.  Meat is so expensive in the grocery store.  I couldn't believe the quality of the items we got for that price.  I mean, we didn't stock up on junk food.  Junk food is cheap.  This stuff is not.  Plus, this was a stock up trip!!  So we normally will probably only pay around $35-$40 or so.  I am so excited!!  We had a great time.  I took more pictures (to spread the excitement) but they're on my camera and not my cell phone.  My camera cord is MIA, so I need to get a new one.  YAY!  So excited!

Last night we had a date night and went to Dinner in the Diner (at the Chattanooga Choo Choo).  It was so much fun.  We hadn't been on a nice date since our honeymoon.  Normally that wouldn't be something that we could afford.  I got a $25 gift certificate offline at for like $2 or $3.  No restrictions apply (no, I didn't get paid to say that).  So that was some great savings.  I will post pictures as soon as I get the camera cord thing straightened out.  We also have certificates to the Station House (also at the Choo Choo) that we can't wait to use. 

Adam and I have been sticking to our running/walking routine.  It's actually more running than walking, which I'm excited about!  The evenings workout actually works out pretty well for me.  I get to get all my stress out, shower before bed, and then I can get ready in 20 minutes or less in the morning.  It's great.  We actually are going to go in the morning before church if we can get up!  I like it so much better than spin.  It works more with my schedule, and I enjoy getting outside.  Well Adam and I are getting ready for a lazy evening at home (minus the laundry).  Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Peace out, 4:45 a.m.!!!

So Adam and I have been getting up every morning (Monday-Thursday) at 4:45 a.m.  Yes, we are crazy.  We have been going to spin class.  I have been doing spin since back in November (but in the afternoon, not at 4:45 a.m.).  It was very effective at first.  I lost a good amount of inches and was feeling really good about myself.  Then before the wedding I began going twice a day because I had become a little lax with my workouts, and I needed to get in shape fast.  But now I can't tell that spin is doing that much for me.  I think my body is used to it.  I don't get sore from it anymore.  It was fun when Adam started going with me though.  We have been going really early in the morning because we like getting our workout done before the day begins cause then we don't have to worry about it later.  But it has been absolutely killing us getting up that early.  Plus, it takes away from most of our evening because we have to get in the bed so early.  We literally get off work, eat supper, do laundry, dishes, etc and go to bed.  We can't do it anymore.  Plus, I need to switch up my routine.  Spin isn't working anymore.

So we're going to start working out in the evenings.  I think it will work better.  Yeah, I'll have to work out after work, but I'm going to choose to look at it as my "de-stressing time." : )  We're going to do some walking, running, biking, and hopefully we'll find something fun and new to do.  I think it will be good bonding time for us since we'll be able to talk.  You can't talk during spin.  The music is too loud, and there's a bunch of people around.  It will be nice to have this time together at the end of the day.  If you have any suggestions on good workouts, let me know!  We're always looking for something new to do.

We had a good weekend this weekend.  Friday night we went to Zaxby's and got dinner and a birthday cake milkshake!  Ohhhhh yeah.  I really like how I went from talking about working out to a birthday cake milkshake, hahaha.  But seriously.  It's amazing.  Perfect Friday night treat.  Saturday we PAID OFF A DEBT (my engagement ring)!!!  That's a PRAISE!!  We also cleaned up the house.  Saturday night we had our middle school youth over for a little get-together.  Adam and I teach the middle school youth on Sunday nights at our church.  We had so much fun having them over.  We picked up pizzas, played some badminton, Bananagrams and Signs.  Signs is the best game ever.  PSBC, you know what I'm talking about.

Well, it's getting late, and I need some rest to get the week started off right!  Please pray for me at school.  It takes a lot of energy and patience to teach my little prek kids!  Goodnight!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

I can do it myself....correction- CAN'T.

I've been feeling pretty overwhelmed lately.  The first 2 days of school have come and gone.  They were a whirlwind for sure.  I feel like as a new teacher there are so many things I don't know about.  Attendance, student files, parent paperwork....not to mention prek.  It's a lot different from fourth and fifth grade!  Not only that, Adam and I are doing Crown Financial Money Map counseling.  Whew.  That is a lot of work and stress too.  Adam and I are also going to begin teaching the middle school youth at church tomorrow night.  Now, don't get me wrong.  I am really excited about everything we have going!  It's just...a lot.  I believe everything I'm doing right now is exactly what I should be doing, but it feels like a big load.  I just need to pray for God's help.  I often try so hard to do things on my own.  I usually feel like I have to prove to myself that I can do it.  I have been that way with a lot of things in my life.  I always regret it, but I want to do them because I think I can.  I'm SOOOO hard headed when it comes to doing things myself.  Silly, right?

This right before Adam left for Iraq.  Another stupid time when I told God, "I will handle this myself."  That was so dumb.  Yes, I made it through, but I missed out on an amazing opportunity to grow closer to God!  I could have been leaning on God, submerged in His Word.  That was a period when I had a lot of time on my hands!  But what did I do instead?  I read the Twilight series.  Good books, dumb choice.

College.  Another great time to lean on God.  But I rarely did.  I wanted to make the A's by myself.  No thanks God, I can handle this one.  I wonder what things God could have done through me if I had been more open to Him.  Higher honors.....finding good Christian friends at school...who knows?  I wanted to do it myself, so I'll never know.

I don't want the rest of my life to be that way.  I need God.  I don't need to prove that I can do things myself.  Because I can't.  There isn't a single thing that I can do without God.  That is really difficult for me sometimes.  I like to think I'm fairly smart, organized, capable of handling many things at once....but God says I'm not.  He said I can't do anything!!!

"I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing." -John 15:5

I can't do anything!  I can't claim anything I have done.  God was helping me the whole time.  I could not get out of bed in the morning if it wasn't for God's grace.  I really need to focus on this reality.  Please pray for me, and I will pray for you- that we will surrender to God every morning and beg him to lead us and show us the way.  Beg him to stay with us, help us, and guide us.  I need to say, "God I can't do it on my own.  I need you."  I'm beginning a challenging time in my life- prek, youth leadership, marriage, financial stuff, etc....  But I want to do things differently this time.  I want to be used by God.  I know that if I would just let Him, He will take over my life and do incredible things with it!  So I've decided.  I'm surrendering.  But it's not a one time deal.  It's a daily, hourly, momently thing.  But I want my life to change.  I want to do things God's way.   

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