Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Baby Girls are 3!

February 15th our little girls turned 3. They are getting so big so fast. They're hilarious and reallllly talking non-stop. Here is a conversation from today:

Kezzie: "You RUUUDE!!"
Keren: "I not ruuude! I MAD!"
They're sassy. They're loud. They're huh-larious. They talk with one hand on their hip and the other pointin' a finger. They never stop dancing. They sing constantly. They're little African Women. I like them a lot.
Go to my sister's blog here to see pictures from their Birthday. My mom made them an extravagant cake. It was pretty darn cool.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

James- "Ellie, this is you."

This is me as a paper plate. I think it looks just like me. {especially the hair.}

Sunday, February 14, 2010

True Love?

Today is the day when everyone is supposed to be in love ...but... a lot of people just aren't. I think most people wish they were just so they could say so today. Today those people are made out to be losers. For them today is just "Singleness Awareness Day".

We all have a desire to love and to be loved and sometimes that void in our hearts beckons to us, begging us to fill it with things that we know won't fit properly. It's like a puzzle, one of the difficult ones that have 5,000,000 pieces. You try putting the same pieces into the spots again and again even though you know that they don't go there. You keep putting them in again though..just in case. You try it upside down, and right side up but no matter how you turn's just not going to fill that spot and your puzzle ends up a crooked mess.
We try filling the hole within our hearts with all sorts of superficial things, most of which leave us feeling more empty then when we started.
Our lives are a search for love. We're looking for a real love. "True Love". Like Cinderella had. (Hers was obviously true, right? I mean, they danced, she lost her shoe, he found her shoe, they got married. It must have been true love.)
We think we'll find love when we fit in in all the right crowds. When we date the cute boy on the football team or the tall, blond cheerleader. That's where we're supposed to find it, right?
Acceptance? maybe. Love? probably not.
We think we'll find it when we marry the right person or when we have a great family and a good home life.
Love IS found there but those kinds of love can only fill our hearts to a certain point. Our love can only go so far before we start to feel selfish and don't really feel like serving other people or loving them more than we love ourselves. We still feel a longing for something more. We all want something deeper, we want someone to love us when we feel ugly or grumpy or worn out or just plain unlovable. We want unconditional love without limits or boundaries as to how far it will go.
The number one cause of broken hearts that are searching for love has to be people flinging their hearts at someone that they hope will catch it and nurture and love it. More often then not, the person who's suddenly got a heart in their lap doesn't know what to do with it or doesn't even know you've given it to them...resulting in hearts crashing down and breaking.
We can't blame them for allowing our hearts to break. They didn't ask for our hearts (most of the time.)
We can only live this Humpty-Dumpty lifestyle for so long before we begin to feel the effects of being glued back together constantly. You'll find yourself wondering whether you ARE lovable. Whether you actually matter. {Major Fact: You do.}
These aims at love are like tofu or hot dogs or imitation crab. They may have the consistency of the real deal and may even smell and taste like it. However, sooner or later you are going to discover you've been deceived. It was not real crab or real chicken at all. It was a lame excuse for the real thing...the thing you may have initially thought you were eating. It may still be delicious, but overall you can not expect the same things out of crab when it's made of whale innards. It just doesn't compare.
Our feeble attempts at love cannot compare to real love unless we are modeling our love after real love. What love is real love you ask?
Real Love is the love of an Almighty Creator who made you in His image. You are so beautiful to Him.
Real Love is the love of a Holy God who cannot stand our wickedness and instead of smiting us because of our shortcomings, he sent His son to be a perfect sacrifice in our place. (Romans 8) He sent His one and only Son to come and take our place and punishment for our crimes. He sent His son so that we could be cleansed. So that we could come before Him in His holiness as His children! Not a slave or a measly peasant but His child.
Real love is the love of a Father, who loves us with a relentless love despite the fact that we ignore His amazing love over and over and over again.
Real love is the love of a Savior who loved us enough to take on our filth and our wickedness and bear our shame so we wouldn't have to. So that we, prostitutes in this world, who give ourselves away constantly to everything but our One True Love, could be found clean in the eyes of God. He died in our place and rose again, conquering death forever. He lives and He makes my life worth living.
Real love is the love of Jesus! He calls us out of our darkness and shame into His marvelous light where true love and true life are found. In Him we find true joy. In Him we find meaning for life. In Him there is nothing to hide because He has made us a new creation in Himself with our past faults completely wiped clean. He throws our sin into the deepest ocean and puts up a no fishing sign. We have redemption and forgiveness in Him. We have freedom in Him! Jesus will never leave us or forsake us. Ever. He will never drop our hearts and break them. Ever. He will never disappoint us. He. is. good. He rescued me and He loved me, because of Him I have found True Love. In the words of Phil Wickham..."When blood and water hit the ground, walls we couldn't move came crashing down. We were freed and made alive the day that True Love died..." But it didn't end there because Jesus is alive!
He never stops loving us. His love is higher than the heavens and deeper than the deepest ocean. There is nowhere we can go where His loving arms cannot reach. All we need to do is accept Him and His forgiveness, believe that we have failed and believe that He has the power to completely wash us clean from our failures. We have done nothing to deserve His love, we can never do anything to deserve His love and yet He LOVES us. That's where the beauty is. We cannot save ourselves... but He can save us and He will. He has already payed our ransom! We just need to admit that we need saving and give our hearts and lives completely to Him. We can thank Him for His love by loving Him back.
On this Valentine's Day of 2010, give your heart to the only One who can truly fill it's love shaped void. Not only can He fill it, He can fill it to overflowing. Let Him heal the broken bits of your heart and show you true joy.
Don't run from God's tremendous love any longer, let Him wash you in His love...bask in the beauty of it. The Maker of the universe made you and loves you. He has payed your ransom with the blood of His own son. He has gone to such lengths to redeem you and He will never, ever let you down.
Give your life to the One worth living for.
Jesus loves you and I love you too. He loves us with a relentless love. Give up your search and give in to Jesus. You won't be disappointed.
" Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.... Love never fails...And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."- 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 and 13
This is the kind of love that God has for us and pours out on us constantly. This is how we should love other people.
(Please if you have any questions at all or want to talk about anything mentioned above, please email me. I'd love to talk to you.

Oh, Saint Valentine.

My beautiful rose and tulip leaf from my lovely big brother. The leaf basically had a bite taken out of it and he says to me "Can't be too picky in the jungle". I bet I'm the only girl in Wake Forest with a rose from the jungle. So lucky. Hahaha.

I LOVE Jesus, I LOVE my family and I LOVE my friends! My heart is exploding with love on this Valentines Day.
Here are {for your enjoyment} some of our photo booth session photos. I love my brothers.
Prepare yourself for this next one....James: "Everyone act like your blind!"
He's the one that didn't act like he was blind. stinker.
On a side note...Today we went to church and got to meet our dearest friends, The Havens', new twin baby boys that just came home from Russia yesterday! They are SO precious and we are so excited to have them join our extended family! :) We love you Connor and Colton!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

a bit of Mestas...

Her lips give her an unfair advantage with this cool trick.

A new look?

Thursday, February 4, 2010


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

10 (or maybe 11) facts about this snowy week :

1. This week has flown by like a really fast little bird.

2. We have been {basically} snowed in since Friday and it is now Wednesday. It's been glorious. 7 inches of glorious snow that is still not melted. {and we could get more snow this weekend!}
3. Snow brings people out of their homes. I didn't know that all of the houses in my neighborhood actually had people living in them until this week. People were laughing and playing and sledding and shoveling for hours upon hours. I LOVE it. Me: "Kerennie what do you have?" Keren:" Ummm...a twee"
4. When the snow has turned icy, your sled will go freakishly fast down the hill. Also, when the snow has turned icy, snow ball fights can turn into "to the death" quite quickly. Not my favorite brand of snow ball fight.
5. If you sled down hills with boulders at the bottom, the chances will hit them eventually with your body. and the little children will hit the smaller ones with their sleds and probably go flying off into the woods. it's ok though, snow is pretty soft. 6. Warm blankets, slippers, fire places, tea, cookies, little bundled up marshmallow looking children that can barely move, good books, and snow are among my favorite winter things.
7. Keziah is substantially heavier when she has a snow bib and a coat on and you have to carry her up a hill. Substantially heavier. (thanks mom for the flattering picture.)
8. The boys are fascinated with the Star Wars movies right now. My dad rented most of them for this week that we knew we'd be shut in. I LOVE sitting with them and watching movies...but has anyone ever died of over exposure to Star Wars? I'm thinking it's very possible.
(A Star Wars pose?)
9. We made an igloo. A North Carolina Igloo that is. Maybe it looks not-so-much like an igloo but it served us well. Ok, maybe it looks like a redneck igloo. (inside view...^)
10. Snow has got to be one of the most beautiful creations of Jesus. It is so like Him to cover up all of the dead earth and skinny, leafless, lifeless, trees with beautiful snow. He pours out His life and mercy over our dead ugliness day after day, washing us clean and giving us new life. This peaceful, pure whiteness all around is just another glimpse of His overwhelming grace, washing over my barren life. I love it.
11. Our dog likes to sled. Yes, indeed. She's one of a kind. P.S. Snow Cream is weird. We ate lots of plain snow though. (the spoiled ones had it hand fed to them by their brothers.)
Fact of Jeremiah's Day:
Snow is cold.