Saturday, March 21, 2009

Soccer Boys

Today marked the start of the official Nave soccer season! Two of our boys, our youngest two actually, desired to play soccer this year through the Upward Soccer League at our church. It has been so sweet to see their seriousness in making sure that they are at their practices and today's game on time and in order! Jason and I have been chuckling as they express with great animation everything their coaches tell them.
This morning's games began at 9:00 cold...and man was it cold!!! The winds were whipping on that open field and Nathan's 5 year old team was having difficulty playing because they were all freezing at first! Once they got to running, they forgot the cold and had alot of fun trying to kick the ball into the goals.
By Luke's game at 11:00 the winds had died down a little and the sun was warming things up a bit so it wasn't quite as cold, but it never did get overly warm. Luke had a blast running up and down the field, and especially in his most dramatic way of kicking the ball and falling down! We all laughed as over and over he fell with the only reason being that he truly enjoys falling down! I think it gives him the feeling of really giving it his all.
Both teams did a great job and had so much fun and I must say that the viewers did as well. It appears to be the beginning of a great season and I know for sure there are at least 2 little players who are really proud to be out there!

A Weekend Away...

"Opposites attract" the saying goes. That has never been truer than in our family. Jason and I are complete opposites and while it drives me crazy at times, often I am so thankful. You see, I am not a spontaneous person in the least. I like to wake up already knowing my plans for the day and stick to them until I say goodnight. However, I can always count on my husband to burst into my plans with plans of his own...and usually because his plans are more fun, he wins over!
This is sort of what happened on a recent weekend. It all started on a Friday around lunch. We were sitting at the table eating and talking about the beautiful weather when all of a sudden one of the boys spoke up, "I wish we could go to the mountains today." That was it!!! The wheels quickly began to turn and by 2:00 we were picking our oldest son up from school early and had the car packed to head to Blue Ridge. Whew...a whirlwind!
It took about 2 hours to get there, but it was like an entrance into another world as we stepped out of our van (more like tumbled out)and instantly breathed in the cool, crisp mountain air. The boys, of course, were excited and quickly began lugging our things into the cabin.
Upon entering we all took our own quick tours through the house claiming rooms and ooohhhhing and aaahhhhing over the things we each liked best. The view, the pool table, hot tub, huge jacuzzi tub, and on and on we went. (Thankfully the place belongs to a friend and we were able to use it for the small price of the cleaning fee!)
We spent the rest of the evening being lazy, enjoying much needed rest and refreshment and drinking hot cocoa and coffee together while we played Apples to Apples. It was alot of fun.
When morning came we knew we had to go hiking...that is my favorite thing to do in the mountains, so we ate a large breakfast and packed up our things since we would have to be heading home afterwards. We set out into the town to ask about and find the best trails for the day. We were directed to the Ocoee River area where the Olympic kayaking took place years ago. The hiking itself was fun...we didn't see a whole lot of amazing things, but we did enjoy the exercise and the fresh air. I think the only natural thing that captured my attention was the various types of mosses and lichens. I always love to take pictures of the soft, fuzzy mosses that cover large areas of the woods, and this day was no different. However, the mosses I came across were so different and very beautiful! Not only did we see the lush green, but so many other colors as well. It was like little "forests" of green and pink or green and white tips...absolutely interesting and I could not stop taking pictures and admiring their beauty. It was a great opportunity to discuss the amazing creativity of our God and how He takes pleasure in creating even the tiniest things into something beautiful! No matter where we go or what we do, if our eyes are open we can find all sorts of beautiful, often intricate, things that He has made and we have the privilege to enjoy. That always gets me excited and so we had some great conversations and truly an enjoyable time!
Next, we drove over to the Ocoee River and had a really fun time exploring and climbing on the rocks and so forth. There is nothing better for our family than time together outdoors. It is a guarantee that when we go hiking together, our children get along better, they are kinder and more helpful, and everyone feels closer to one another and to our Creator.
It is through experiences like these that I learn to appreciate the spontaneity of my husband and I feel very contented in my soul that we are a family heading in the right direction. Although problems and issues come and go and there are times when we feel very overwhelmed and inadequate at this parent/marriage is on days like these that I say to myself, "slow and steady...keep on going...God is faithful" and so forth. I am always so humbled and encouraged at the same time. So, the next time my husband has some great idea, I have learned to say, "maybe..."!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Happy Birthday Caleb!!!

Caleb is nine - Wow! It seems like just yesterday we were bringing this chubby little baby home from the hospital and transitioning into having three children. Now we have five and he is no longer a baby, but instead a maturing young man with beautiful blue eyes and a smile that you can't help but enjoy!
He truly is such a blessing to our family and a natural encourager. Before I had Caleb, I still had some of the shyness of my youth, but not now! He is the official spokesperson for our family and has introduced me to hundreds of people, literally! I remember when we first moved to Georgia and Jason began serving on staff at our rather large church...I felt so overwhelmed by all of the new faces and people I thought I would never get to know! But one by one, I would meet, women, didn't matter, they would come up to me and say something like this, "I met one of your sons the other day...the blond one..." Yes, it was Caleb - and now 4 years later, I feel like I know the whole church! Thanks, Caleb!
Not only is Caleb our little socialite, he also happens to be a very good worker and will do any job with a good attitude. Many times I have heard my husband bragging to others about how quickly Caleb can have our garage in perfect order and all the while with a spring in his step! Any time I have a job that needs to be done that my other children would hate, I can always call on Caleb and hear, "sure...anything else?" You gotta love a kid who says that!
I think one of my favorite things about Caleb is his compassion for others and sensitivity to the Lord and His Word. Often times I will see Caleb with a little child right beside him and Caleb will have his arm around him/her or even be carrying them around. All of the little kids we know love Caleb and look up to him because he makes them feel special and takes time to play with them even when friends his age are waiting on him. He is willing to give up his seat or run an errand or anything else because he loves people and he knows Jesus wants others to be first. How sweet he can be!
Of course, Caleb is not perfect and with all of his abundant energy there are times when I feel a little overwhelmed trying to keep up with him, but I have to admit that his life has changed mine so much for the better! He is a source of encouragement, laughter, and all sorts of exciting adventures for our family and I give God all the praise for His workmanship in creating Caleb and placing him in our family. Happy Birthday, Caleb!

Sunday, March 1, 2009