Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Monday, April 20, 2009
Playing restaurant/store with the trampoline boxes.
Kaityn wanting to be like "Beeba." (Kaibryn)
Kaibryn reading...as usual.
Cooper driving his racecar. I think the sun might have been in Kaityn Mae's eyes.
Well, once again the week is off. We had quite a busy weekend here at the Anderson household...
Soccer games...lunch w/Grandad & Nana...cleaned out kids closet...got clothes out of the attic to go through for summer...yard mowed...trampoline put up (partly)...dinner...baths...bed for kids...Pink Swirls for Mom & Dad.
Fun weekend but lots to do this week...
finish putting out summer clothes...stuff back up in attic...finish painting the bathroom...haircuts...dr. appt. for Cooper...Pink Swirls with friends tomorrow (can you tell I like this place)...plus all the laundry, cleaning, piano lessons, soccer practices, gymnastics, playing, cooking, & just being with my kids. I love this life I am blessed with.
The weather is beautiful today & the kids have been outside most of the morning playing with the boxes that the trampoline came in. Looking forward to a gorgeous week & trying to fit in a day to go to the zoo somewhere in there. Might not happen but we will see.
Hope everyone has a great week. Will post soon.
Posted by The Anderson Zoo at 2:08 PM
Thursday, April 16, 2009
WOW!!!! Have not done this in a while. I need to start again.
1. I am thankful for a husband who was "Mr. Mom" for a week while I was sick & for a Mom who took over & kept my home in working order during the day.
2. I am thankful for our church family who provided meals for our family (even when I started feeling better) during that week.
3. I am thankful for friends who came to stay with Chris in the emergency room while I was being looked at.
4. I am thankful for date night last weekend with some friends. It was fun to be silly & laugh ALOT!!!
5. I am thankful that school is almost over.
6. I am thankful that the kids are loving all the activities they are involved in this spring.
7. I am thankful that prayer works!!!!!!!!
8. I am thankful that Kaityn is starting to actually makes some sense when she talks.
9. I am thankful for friends who love our kids like they were there own.
10. I am thankful that spring is around the corner (I think).
11. I am thankful for my Mom & the twice a year shopping trip she takes me on.
12. I am thankful for this past Sunday. God is doing some amazing things at First Southern & I am so glad that Chris & I are able to have a little part.
13. I am so thankful for my kids who keep me hopping (& tired). We are beyond blessed.
What is something you are thankful for?
Posted by The Anderson Zoo at 4:49 PM
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
I actually started this post on Monday but for some reason (a husband to care for, 4 kiddos, & a home to keep in some kind of order) I am a little behind in getting my thoughts put together and posting.
My thoughts have been swimming around in my head & there are so many things God is showing me & reminding me. I honestly don't know why I am typing this out. Maybe it is for me. Maybe someone else needs some encouragement. I don't know.
My thoughts keep coming back to my home. I have been thinking about what type of place it is to my family, friends, neighbors, or anyone that just stops by. I guess it started Monday when I went to return some dishes to a friend who had brought my family a meal when I was sick last week. Chris always teases me that I have "social anxiety disorder" (SAD). It is very hard for me to talk to people, especially people I don't know or know that well. This is totally opposite of my husband who could talk to a brick wall (I'm serious). Well, I actually drove past my friends house thinking "Oh my goodness. What if she thinks I'm weird for just stopping by." "What if I should have called first." However, I pushed past my fears (after Christopher pointed out that the lights were on & she was home) and stopped by anyway. This friend was totally opposite & I knew she would be. She was very welcoming & sweet & acted as if it were no big deal. I'm just silly that way. I laugh at myself & how I think. Maybe I do have "SAD."
It brought me back to a Bible study that I have taken three times. It is called "Keepers of the Home." It was written by a lady who lives in Edmond, OK. It is probably one of the best Bible studies I have been a part of. I am all about "practical". I want to be able to put into practice everything I learn or what use is it, right? Anywho, this study is based off of Titus 2 :3 -5.
Titus 2:3 - 5 - "Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensitive, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their husbands, so that the Word of God will not be dishonored."
This Bible study was so great for me & I learned so much about caring for my home, not just the physical aspects of it but spiritual as well. But the one thing I keep coming back to is "hospitality." Romans 12:13 says, "Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality." And Ephesians 4:29 & 32 says, "No rotten talk should come from your mouth, but only what is good for the building up of someone in need. In order to give grace to those who hear...Be kind and compassionate to one another...." My home should be a place to encourage others...not just family but anyone who enters our home. There is a quote by Joseph Fort Newton which I love. It says, "share your life, and find the finest joy man can know. Don't be stingy with your heart. Get out of yourself into the lives of others, and a new life will flow into you. Share & share alike." I think of my heart. What do I want others to know...God's love, peace, encouragement, comfort. I desire my home to be a picture of what Heaven will be like as opposed to what the world is life...selfishness, anger, pride, hurtful, etc.
These are other verses that encourage me in the area of hospitality...
Matthew 20:28 - "Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to SERVE, and to give his life as a ransom for many."
I Timothy 6:17 - 19 - "Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to DO GOOD , to be rich in GOOD DEEDS , and to be GENEROUS and WILLING to share. In this way, they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so they may take hold of the life that is truly life."
Not once do these verses talk about convenience or it being easy...it is a matter of my heart.
Looking back over the past couple of years I believe that I have grown some in this area of hospitality...although I also know I have a lot to learn. I have made many mistakes but have grown...this godly life is a process, right?
A few years ago when we lived in our old home we had some neighbors who moved here from Ohio (the woman had met the man on the internet & moved her three children here to live with him - just a little background). It was not uncommon to be sitting down for dinner & looking out our window & seeing Daniel looking in at us. We became friends with he & his sister Kaitlynn. There were weeks where they would eat with us 2 & 3 times. At the beginning I was so frustrated because this was our "family time"...a time for just us to be together. The Lord reminded me of prayers I prayed when Chris & I were first married that our home would be a place ANYONE would feel welcome. After getting my heart right I just always prepared extra just in case they stopped by. Was this easy? No. Did I always have a "happy heart"? No. It did begin to prepare me for now. Generally when I fix dinner, I always fix extra just in case someone come over. In the past we have at random times have called people to come over & earlier this year we had a different family over each week. It has just been fun. God has showed me that this life is NOT ABOUT ME but being generous and sharing with everyone...friends & family.
Earlier this year we had the opportunity to have Chris's parents live with us for a month while his Dad was off & Mom was going to physical therapy from an injury she got at work. I can honestly say it was fun even though we gained so much weight. I'm not kidding. His Mom can cook up a storm. Was it easy for both of us? NO. Was it convenient? No. They slept on an air up mattress every night and put it away every morning. They had no privacy or quietness (not possible w/4 kids). I never heard them complain. They were grateful & helpful & our family was blessed by them being here. But I truly learned alot this time about helping those in need whether it was convenient for me or not. I was blessed in that month that they were here & I am glad we were able to help them. That is what families do. They would have done the same for us if we were in their situation. I pray that we were a blessing to them as well.
My prayer for our home is that ANYONE will feel welcome at ANY time. That is what God has called me to do. My family/my home is my mission field. Not just to the people who we have planned to come over but to ANYONE who enters. I want it to be a place of encouragement, peace, blessing & a refuge from the grossness (is that a word) of this world. One of the greatest compliments I have received about our home is that it is a place where our friends could just come relax & feel like they are at home.
Matthew 25: 35, 40 says, "For I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in...The king will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of the brothers of mine, you did for me."
God is so good at reminding me of things when I need it the most. I pray today that my home will be the kind that points others to Christ.
Posted by The Anderson Zoo at 12:07 PM
Monday, April 6, 2009
To my faithful reader Amy who checks my blog every day.
Thanks for checking...Hi!
Thanks for coming over for dinner Fri. PM (& Justin, I guess :) ). Hope you have a great week.
Sorry Becky!!!!!!! Thanks for checking every day. I check yours but you never write. :( :(
Have a great week my friend.
Posted by The Anderson Zoo at 2:24 PM
Friday, April 3, 2009
When my children were born and up until my in-laws moved to Kansas City my mother-in-law Karen and sister-in-law Candace would make a decorate all the kids birthday cakes. They were AMAZING. I need to find the pics of cakes that they made...a caterpillar, a race track, a princess crown, a 3-D Noah's ark, Elmo, etc. They were beautiful!!!!!!
since they moved I am the one in charge of the decorated cakes. I feel so bad that the cakes were amazing & they remember them...I don't want them to be disappointed. I know, I know...it is going to have to stop at some point & I should not feel guilty but I do.
Cooper's birthday was Wednesday & instead of having a party (thank goodness...me being sick for a week has really thrown me off) he is having a friend spend the night. He told me he wanted a Star Wars cake. It is so funny. My boys LOVE Star Wars even though they have only seen a few minutes of one of the old movies. I was trying to figure out how to make a Star Wars cake & talked him into letting me make a "light saber" cake. He said, "OK. As long as it is blue."
this was the end result. It really is kind of sad looking but when he saw it his face lit up. It was precious & I wish I had a camera. He kept saying, "Oh, thank you Mommy. It's so cool." Made my heart happy.
ANOTHER COOPER STORY...
My Mom was taking Cooper for his "birthday day" with Nana. He was kind of upset about Christopher not being able to go (he LOVES his brother). He said, "Nana. I have a Motto." My Mom said, "What is it Cooper?" He replied very seriously..."No child left behind." He cracks me up.
Thanks for loving your cake Cooper.
Posted by The Anderson Zoo at 3:26 PM
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Yes. I realize it is April 1 but this truly is our Cooper's birthday.
I remember the day we went to the hospital & found out he was going to be taken 9 wks. early. We called family & some friends & it took a while for everyone to believe us. They thought we were pulling a joke on them. This was the day God had chosen to bring Cooper into this world.
Last week while we were at the hospital I was reminded again of how God took care of us & Cooper. I saw the road I walked every morning and afternoon from our "trailer home" to the hospital. The emotions I feel every time I pass Baptist hospital overwhelm me. I think of his nurses and Dr.'s that loved on him when his Momma could not be with him. I think of the "adventures" my Mom would take Christopher & Kaibryn on when they would go over to the hospital with me in the afternoons so they did not feel stuck inside. I think of all the people who prayed for Cooper ALL over the world & from a little church in Rubottom, Oklahoma that still ask PaPa Clark & GiGi about little Cooper. God showed Himself so real to me during the 2 days up until Cooper's unexpected entry into the world & the three weeks he was in the NICU. My heart truly goes out to any parent who has a child born prematurely. And I am so thankful for my sweet Cooper.
Cooper was born weighing 3 lbs., 6 oz. & we were told April 2, 2004 that the nurses did not expect him to make it because he kept fighting all the tubes, meds & machines. He was a fighter & is still tough today.
Cooper is known for walking into glass doors (serisously...it has happened at Chris's office and at the GAP at the mall), walking into walls & falling in some weird way & hops up and laughs and says, "I'm OK." He is a joy. He is so tender hearted toward people. A couple of weeks ago at his first soccer game one of the players from the other team got hurt. The two teams separated but Cooper stayed right there & was bending over talking to the boy who was hurt. I teared up. I am becoming my Grandma. :) And last night Chris was telling Christopher not to do something but then gave him permission to do what he told him not to do (make sense?) . Cooper did not hear Chris tell Christopher it was OK & Cooper saw Christopher start to do it & Cooper started crying and saying, "No Bubba." because he did not want him to get in trouble.
Cooper right now is really enjoying soccer. This is the first competitive sport he has played. It is quite enjoyable for all of us to watch. He loves going to AWANAS at church. He is so friendly & will let you know that he does not like the "Poo Poo Heads" which refers to OSU and Texas...he is very passionate about this (very funny).
God gave me a promise 2 days before Cooper was born. I thought it was for me because I was so tired & was not sure how I could finish the pregnancy & take care of 2 smaller children.
Is. 41: 9 - 13 - , "I said to you: You are My servant; I have chosen you and not rejected you. Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with My righteous right hand...For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand and say to you: Do not fear, I will help you."
I was so encouraged. I had no idea that those verses would be the verses I would pray over Cooper every day that I was with him in the NICU the first few weeks of his life. I would rock him and hold him and pray for God to help him, hold on to him & strengthen him. God did. We were told he would be in the NICU for 6-8 weeks & he was home in 3 weeks. God answered prayers of hundreds of people. If you were one of those thank you from the bottom of my heart.
We loved the name Cooper. It was not until AFTER he was born that I found the meaning of his name to be "servant." Notice the first part of that verse..."You are my servant." God again encouraged me with this precious gift He had given us. When I first went into the hospital April 1 Chris kept praying over me & saying over and over He is not ours, He is God's.
I am so grateful God chose me to be Cooper's Mom. I could write forever about all the things God did for us during this time but that is not for now. Cooper is such a joy. He makes me laugh & is a visual reminder of God's faithfulness. I needed to be reminded of that today. God is good.
There are big things in store for Cooper & we cannot wait until God reveals those things.
Happy Birthday Cooper. Mommy loves you.
Posted by The Anderson Zoo at 1:07 PM