Saturday, January 30, 2010


Right now I am walking the through the Study "Breaking Free" by Beth Moore. This study originally came out 10 years ago, but Beth has recently updated it. I am doing this study with some girls from church and am really enjoying it. Beth Moore does a great job of getting you in the word and bringing the word alive.

Today's topic was to experience God's peace. I believe that is such an amazing benefit of personally knowing Christ. Knowing his peace doesn't mean we don't have any problems in our lives, but it does mean we can experience peace throughout our pain. There was a list of scriptures in Isaiah we looked up, but one really stuck out to me.

Isaiah 54:10
"Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken, nor my covenant of peace be removed," says the Lord who has compassion on you.

What an amazing promise. Even if we feel like everything is falling down around us, God offers peace to us. For those who have received him, and bow our knees before him, he offers peace. In my short life I don't think I have experienced mountains shaking and hills being removed, but I am a breathing entity, so I know that life on this earth will bring challenges, I pray that when I feel like everything around me is falling apart, that I can bow my knee to the One who is in control and experience indescribable peace.

In my words, to experience God's peace is to stay calm in the storms of life, because you are intimately connected to the one who can either calm the storm or bring you through it safely.

For those of you who don't experience this peace, I would challenge you to seek the One who provides it.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Date Night

When we first were married living in Bradenton, we had date night every Tuesday night. We would split a California Burrito at Mr. Tequila's (one of the absolutely best mexican dishes on the face of the planet) then head over to the dollar movies. Good news was Tuesday's were 1/2 off at the movies, so we paid $1 total for our movie and we paid under $10 for our dinner. So date night on the pastor and teacher salary was $11 and we loved it!

This past year with the transition of having a child and Steve's job demanding more evenings, we haven't been as diligent in our date nights. Someone told us when we got married to never stop dating each other.

One of our goals for 2010 was to put date night back on the calendar. Thursday evenings have been blocked on Steve's calendar, and I am in charge of finding sitters. It would be convenient to have family here to watch Payton, but since that isn't a reality, we are very thankful for the wonderful people on our lives who love on her why we get away to love on each other.

Last night Larry and Kathy Endecott watched her for us. Larry and Kathy are great about spoiling us. Larry is always baking goodies and bringing them our way. They were excited to have Payton for the evening.

Steve and I were able to grab dinner and a movie. We went to Ted Montana's and got a great burger and salad. Then we went to CVS to stock on movie candy. Don't know how "legal" this is but getting candy for $4 at the movie theater doesn't make sense to me. We watched Extraordinary Measures with Brendan Fraser, Harrison Ford and Keri Russell. I knew that it was a sad movie, but didn't know I would cry throughout the whole movie. No sad scene at the end, heart wrenching scenes throughout. I think being a parent it touched my differently. Watching movies like that makes me so thankful for a healthy child. There are so many things that could go wrong, I am so thankful for Payton and her health.

At Larry and Kathy's dropping off Payton.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Brushing Teeth and Eating Venison

Brushing teeth has become more painful for my fingers. We have been using one of those brushes that go on my fingers and I brush the teeth and gums. She has 6 large teeth, 2 back teeth that have cut through, and I believe some more coming in because she is chewing on her fingers and won't let me in her mouth at all. She locks that mouth down. The picture below just happened to catch a view of her top 4 teeth.

So we moved up to a big girl toothbrush today. I brushed for a bit, to do some actual brushing, but Payton was more than pleased to finish up for me. She got mad when I took the toothbrush away.

Steve was home for lunch today, I had fixed spaghetti with venison. I never had venison before I was married to Steve the hunter. I can honestly say that if I never had venison again in my life, I would be ok. But, since it is "free" meat (somehow hunting can be an expensive sport, but Steve swears the deer meat is free), we eat it often in our family. I was organizing our deep freezer the other day and we have more venison than I know what to do with. If you are local and want some venison, come on over when Steve isn't home and I will happily share :) Steve doesn't read my blog so I can say that :)

Steve wanted to capture the fact that Payton, trying venison for the first time, was more than happy to eat it. So my daughter has now eaten some of the deer that will soon have it's skull and antlers mounted in our basement, what a comforting thought.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Birthday Party!

We had so much fun at Payton's Party. She had over 50 of her closest friends and family come over and celebrate with her. Steve parents and brother came over from St. Louis. Not sure if she knew what was going on, but seemed to enjoy the attention. I didn't get many pictures during the party, as I was enjoy hanging out with everyone. I had done some prep for her outfit for the day, that didn't quite work out. Enjoy the pics!

I made this tutu and tried taking a naked picture, she did not like it!

This is how I was hoping for her to look for her party, tutu didn't happen, that will be something to grow in to.

Made this hair clip to match the shirt, she wouldn't leave that in either. She takes bows out of her hair, looks at them, then tried to put them back in, when I put them back in, she takes them out and we start the cycle all over. I have given up on bows until I can reason with her.

How she looked for the party, much more comfy. Notice the 2 bows in her hands that have been pulled out.

Birthday banner

We did cupcakes for the party. Chocolate, strawberry and vanilla.

This was her big cupcake. My first time every decorating cupcakes, I had fun trying all sorts of techniques. I made 67 cupcakes, as we had over 70 RSVP's. Some people didn't show and many didn't eat, needless to say, we had cupcakes all week. I had 2 dinners that week that I took them to for dessert.

She wasn't too sure. Was softly eating just the icing. It was homemade cream cheese icing the was delicious.

I finally took the top off for her to dig in more, she never got terribly messy.

She loves feeding us, daddy enjoy a piece of her cupcake.

My new favorite picture. While taking pictures of her in her outfits, I took one of us kissing. She loves open mouth kisses. I never get tired of her kisses!

Payton is 1!

January 14th Payton turned 1 !

We had a pretty low key day. Steve was home from work that day, so we had a great lazy family day. We can't believe she is already 1!

One-year-old Payton
- right under 21 pounds
- 31 inches long
- Loves saying Dadda and Boo (her little dog you she sleeps with, compliments of Aunt Callie)
- Also says ball, balloon, ruff ruff, momma (not as much as dadda)
- Points at herself saying dadda, then laughs so hard when we say "you're not dadda"
- Cruising everywhere, not showing much interest in walking yet
- Has the best smile and flashes is all the time
- Her personality is really starting to show, she will play games, making funny noises and squealing with delight when I mimic her
- Will hide behind something and initiate peek-a-boo
- Loves going up and down stairs all by herself
- Drinks from a normal cup and is starting to want to hold the cup by herself (momma still helps)
- Eats pretty well - doesn't like a lot of meat, but loves cheese
- Still feeds from mommy morning and night
- Loves her sleep - sleeps 12 hours at night and take two 2 hour naps (if not 2.5 hours)
- Has 8 teeth (2 in the back, not sure if they are molars)

Payton, you have brought so much joy to our lives. I want to steal kisses from you all the time. You are a blessing from the Lord.

Sitting in her big girl chair that she got from her Papa and Gigi Southards. She is holding boo #2 (we got him so we could rotate the other boo and getting him washed, unfortunately, after a few days she shows no interest in boo #2, she figured us out)

Had whipped cream on her waffle for birthday breakfast. Wasn't too sure at first, but soon dug right in.

Ice cream for dinner.

Steve thought this looked like I was taunting her, she is like her daddy and loves ice cream!