Monday, September 28, 2009

:: The Amazing Race - Week One ::

I'm not a huge fan of reality shows but the month of September brings with it the only one we watch in our house: The Amazing Race.
Last year we started a tradition with two other couples and every Sunday night they come over and we watch it together. We like to pick our favourites and not so favourites and near the end we each choose our pick for the's become a really great night of spending time with good friends.
So, just for fun, each Monday I'm going to do a recap/reviews of Sunday's episode and update on our favourite teams!
This season started with a bang......all twelve teams were lined up waiting to for Phil to say "Go!" and leave Los Angeles for the race of their lives. Then Phil drops a bomb that there are only 11 tickets to Tokyo (their first destination) and that one team will be eliminated right away. The teams had to search through 1000 license plates and find one of the 11 that had Japanese symbols for their first city. It took the teams a while to realize the symbol was printed right on the clue!

Eric and Lisa (married yoga instructors) were the team left without a ticket. We didn't like them from right from the start so were glad they didn't even get out of LA.The teams flew to Tokyo where they participated in a Japanese game show then had to guide 20 tourists across the busiest intersection in Tokyo to a nearby temple.

Poker players Maria and Tiffany were the last to arrive and were missing two tourists. They incurred a two-hour penalty for checking in without their whole group but found out it was a non-elimination round!The next day the teams were off to Vietnam. After landing they took cabs to a bus station where the were split onto two buses. The second bus bribed their driver to leave an hour early only to get to the boat dock to find it doesn't open until morning. So the teams waited it out on patio chairs all night for the gate to open. While all the teams boarded boats for a nearby fruit farm, Maria and Tiffany had special task to complete for being the last team to arrive. The managed to catch up quickly and met the others teams who were busy covering fruit tree roots with fertilizing mud. The teams took their boat back and then needed to find a field were they had to herd ducks through a course in ten minutes. Many of the teams struggled while a few had no problem.
In the end Garrett and Jessica (on and off couple) were the last to check in and were eliminated. Which, again, was fine with us as we didn't get a good vibe from them.

Our favourite teams so far are.......
Mika and Canaan - a newly dating couple from Nashville. He is a songwriter (with a hit on the Billboard right now) and she is an aspiring singer, both are Christians. They are just so cute but did have a few disappointing moments with how they spoke to each other and about some other teams.
Zev and Justin - best friend from California. Zev doesn't work and Justin in a VP of Productions. Zev has Aspergers Syndrome and their relationship is so real and wonderful, and hilarious! I'm really rooting for these two!
Meghan and Cheyne - a dating couple from California. She an Account Executive and he is a Brand Manager. They have known each other since elementary school and are finally seeing if they can be more.
Marcy and Ron - newly dating couple that met on the Internet. She is in Advertising Photography and he is a Stock Trader and Math tutor. They are just fun and sweet and we like them.
Brian and Erick - married couple and we're not big fans. Not sure why really but they just don't seem to treat each other well and that doesn't go over with us.
Lance and Keri - engaged couple and we don't love them either. They are cocky and rude and Lance even called Maria and Tiffany "bastards". Not cool. Wouldn't be sad to see them go.

The other teams include gay brothers who were raised Christian; two Harlem Globetrotter players (so funny); and a father son team trying to make up for lost time (great team as well).
So far the teams are getting along.

Check back next week to find out what happened. I think it's going to be a great season!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

| Denay Catherine - 14 Months |

Well friends, late as usual, I'm posting Denay at 14 months......she has become such a sponge for everything and is learning things so quickly!
A few weeks ago she showed interest in wanting "uppease" into the rocking chair in her room so I hoisted her up which followed with an immediate request for a book and her blankie. Well she sat there without making a peep for almost 45 minutes!
I took these on Saturday when we visited Pacific Northwest Raptors......
(click to enlarge)

At 14 months, Denay......

  • is totally stable walking and getting down/up on small steps by herself

  • says mumma, daddee, oma and opa, upeease (up), ya, no, nana (banana), nigh-nigh (night night)

  • can sign more, please, milk/drink, all done, eat, and book and I trying to teach her "help" so she stops screeching when something is wrong

  • just learned to shake hands and she also loves to clap for herself

  • can "praise Jesus" and she puts her hands up in the air which also works when we say"touchdown"

  • LOVES to dance and just yesterday I taught her to spin in a circle

  • pulls her hair when I ask her where her hair is and has almost figured out where her nose is

  • can blow kisses and if you ask for a kiss she leans in with her mouth open and hugs as well
    • when she hears a train whistle or plane she stops and points to the sky

  • is still in size three diapers and still wears some of her six month clothes but wears mostly 12 months clothes that are a little big and wears size three shoes

  • still has four teeth (two middle top and two middle bottom)

  • is up around eight and usually in bed around eight and had been napping twice a day until this week where she seems to not want to nap at all

  • is a bit of a picky eater (like her mamma)

  • love love loves to "read". I had her at friends place to today and they have a three shelf tall toy storage cabinet and all she wanted were the books

  • has ticklish armpits and feet and ribs (if you get the right spot)

    • is completely attached to her thumb and blankie and had a total breakdown in nursery on Sunday (and again today at MOPS) because she didn't have it with her
    I'm sure there is most but I'm also sure you're getting bored :)
    Anyways, the minute I saw how happy she was reading her book in the rocking chair I got right on the Internet and starting looking for something perfect for her new room. Naturally I hit up Target and found this adorable and perfect children's chair......and what a perfect Christmas present it will be! No idea how we're going to afford it but at $119 I just can't pass it up!
    Anyways.....I'm going to be late for my prayer meeting! Hope you are all enjoyed our very summer first day of fall.....can't wait for another hot one tomorrow!
    Bless you all!

    Saturday, September 19, 2009

    { Welcome Isabella Marie }

    At 6:15am on Thursday, September 17th we got a phone call from Trevor's best friend to let us know that his wife Lindsay had gone into labour seven weeks early and delivered a perfect baby girl at 5:15am weighing 3lbs 15oz and 17 inches long.
    They had flown in from Fort Macmurray for Darryl's sister's wedding today and had the baby in Surrey.
    I stole this from Lindsay's Facebook page of her just post-birth.
    And a couple from Darryl's cell phone.
    We're going to go for a visit in a week or so and I can't wait to meet her and see D&L.
    If you could, as you're reading this, say a quick prayer for Darryl and Lindsay and baby Isabella......they are going to be in Surrey for a while until the baby is stable enough to go home.

    D&L we love you so much and are overjoyed with this're going to make some pretty awesome parents!

    Friday, September 18, 2009

    :: Project Completed ::

    A couple weeks ago, on whim, I decided I was finally going to jump into a project I'd wanted done for a very long time. We have six JYSK dining chairs and a second hand table that are all a light oak.....and so are my floors. My MIL just bought a french country style dining table and it motivated me do mine!
    I hate painting. It takes too after having my chairs ON my table for weeks I buckled down yesterday and got it done.
    Here is the before......the floors really just absorbs the chairs because the colors are so similar.

    And the after.....I am SO thrilled with it. I couldn't wait to get home from a meeting last night just so I could look at it :)

    (click photos to enlarge)
    It just feels so fresh and bright. I'm off today to get a table runner to finish it off!
    The next project? We (which probably means "I") are going to start turning our now spare room into Denay's new room. And no (don't get an ideas) I'm not expecting again I just know how long it's going to take to cover the deep red that's there now with a light purple (gag).
    I also wanted to say thanks for all your love and encouragement on my last post. To be honest, I never doubted how it would be received and you only proved my trust to be true. I continue to pray that God will use it!
    Love you all so much it brings me to tears!

    Tuesday, September 15, 2009

    { A Little Glimpse }

    Well friends, another weekend has passed and wasn't it a beauty! I got to spend the bulk of my afternoon on Saturday doing a family portrait shoot in the sunshine by the ocean for some seriously awesome people so make sure and check out my photography blog later this week for a recap.

    We had a fall kick-off family service at church on Sunday that was held outside on the church grounds and was followed by an all church hot dog lunch picnic.....and it was awesome. Earlier in the week our lead pastor, Mark, emailed me and asked me if I would share a testimony about what God has been doing in my life and what He's been showing me. It was amazing because all the things he asked me talk about were all of the things God was doing almost exactly....and I'm pretty sure he doesn't read my blog so he wouldn't already know that :) I agreed right away and didn't remember until a few days later that we were having a joint service and there would be upwards of 500 people there - gulp. I began to seek God and asking Him to prepare me, speak through me and that the hearts of the congregation would be softened to what He had to say. From the feedback I've gotten, God got His point across and I feel so blessed and humbled to have been able to share my heart and come alongside my church family to encourage them and be united with them. I believe you can listen to it here on our church's website if you'd like (just click on the sermon #661 from Sept. 13/09).

    Anyways, I've been feeling for the past few days as I prepared to give my testimony to my church that it was God's timing for me to share another part of my life story with all of you. Let me privy that by saying that this is very personal and something that I am no longer ashamed of, but that I also don't talk about to just anyone. I am hoping that through my transparency and vulnerability that God can continue whatever work he is doing and reach out though this medium of blogging to a world full of women suffering alone.

    In the fall of 2003 after a then heartbreaking moment in my life, I began a long and ugly two year battle with bulimia. For the first little while I guarded the secret with my life and often went to desperate lengths to keep my addiction private. I confided a couple people along the way thinking that it would make it better but all it did was make me feel guiltier. I moved off to Edmonton for college in the summer of 2004 hoping the change of scenery would help but the loneliness and isolation only left me in a deep depression. About 3/4 of the way through the year I approached my nutrition teacher and let her know what I was dealing with. She got me in touch with the eating disorders clinic at the University of Alberta hospital where I got an appointment with a doctor who gave me a prescription for an anti-depressant. He stressed that counselling was important and I promised to set something up for when I got back home. The anti-depressants were very helpful and I found myself feeling better once it was time to head back west. As soon as I got back in late April of 2005 I started seeing an amazing counsellor at church and God truly worked a miracle through her. We began to dig and search and ask God to reveal the root of my addiction. One day God truly and simply set me free. I can't even put into words how I felt when I left the church day. I still struggled and had to fight but He had lifted the burden from my shoulders and placed His light and easy yoke on me. Shortly after that I met the man that is now my husband and father of my daughter. What has followed since then is still a daily battle. People who have never struggled with addiction may not understand this, but the enemy knows that it has worked before and so it's something that I will fight until the day I die. But I hold onto the victory I have in Christ.

    Looking back I see so much more clearly how God was taking care of me and working His will through my struggles and I am before you today forgiven, redeemed and healthy. So let this make testament to God's healing power and that we are His children. There is nothing that we can do that will make Him love us less or make us less usable to Him.

    So often we are so sure to keep it all together, worried about what others might think or scared of being judged. We only talk about the happy and pretty and "normal" things in our lives to maintain the facade that everything is perfect and that no body needs to waste time praying for me or reaching out. And that is exactly how the enemy gets a foothold. He keeps us isolated, convincing us that we are burden and a "case" and that we should be ashamed and embarrassed and that there is no victory. If we don't cry out and don't share our struggles and seek encouragement how will we ever be free? Community is a very great weapon and one that we under-value and Satan downplays. When we come together and share our burdens and give testament to God's redeeming power and empathize with each other, we find support and encouragement and most of all, acceptance.

    I'm still not sure of God's reasoning or timing or His plan for this post but I trust with my whole being that He will use it. If just one person comes across this page and is empowered to step out of the darkness into His marvelous light, that's reason enough for me. We are told in Romans 6:17 that "....thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness".

    See friends, the victory is already ours.

    We are free!

    Let's no longer walk in the shame of our past but rejoice in Christ's forgiveness and redemption and allow our testimony to encourage others who are dealing with what we've already walked through.

    I know how long this post has become but I wanted to share one more verse of assurance and it's one that is very dear to my heart. It was given to me many years ago by a very special lady named Pastor Carol who went home after a battle with a brain tumor. I know now that it was a prophesy and a promise that I would need to hold onto for this time in my life. It comes from Ezekiel 36:25-27 and says "I will sprinkle clean water on you and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit it you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh".

    He will makes us new. He loves us, He forgives us.

    If anyone reads this and wants a private way to reach out please email me at and I would be more than happy to listen and pray with you and for you.

    Let's continue to press in and knock on the gates of heaven. He hears our prayers.

    Thank you friends for taking the time to read this and my pray is that this is just the beginning of the moving of God's spirit to unify His people and beat back the darkness.

    Wednesday, September 9, 2009

    || Looking On The Bright Side ||

    I make no effort at hiding that fact that I do not like the end of summer. I have a really hard time understanding those people who just love fall and the rain and the crisp air.....that all translates for me into summer-ending, wet and cold. But I'm going to take the highroad and not complain (cause everyone know how much whining irritates me) and instead compile a list of things that aren't bad about "this" time of year.+ let's be honest, onesies are way cuter than shorts and t-shirt pajamas (for the baby of course)

    + I get to wear my super-duper cute rain boots

    + no more irresponsible motorcycle riders speeding around like maniacs thinking they are invincible

    + I don't have to remember to water my plants or the lawn

    + peppermint hot chocolate.....Mmmm

    + it means my birthday and Christmas are just a few months away

    + lots of yearly programs and clubs being relaunched

    + the less favourable (aka cold and wet and ugly and crappy) weather makes for more indoor days which produces more completed projects around the house

    + Halloween candy :)

    + even though the dying trees and foliage depresses me, the colors of the trees before all the leaves fall off are quite beautiful

    So there you have it.....I think I managed to compile a pretty decent list consider my true feelings for this season.

    On another blogger friend Crystal has put a call for prayer on her blog. She saw the same trend that I did among the blogosphere; God is moving and stirring and is calling us deeper. So, we're going to pray. Tomorrow (or today, depending on when you are reading this) Thursday the 10th at 12:30pm we will unite in spirit to lift each other up and pray into the work that God wants to do. Pray for whatever He lays on your heart, spend some time just listening for Him to speak. Let's claim the victory we already have in Christ and stand in the power He's given us! Pray for however long you can. If you can't at that exact time, pray sooner or later, but pray.
    Let's expect big things!

    Good evening friends!

    Tuesday, September 8, 2009

    Apparently I have dropped off the face of the planet again.
    Here's the deal friends.......God has had me on a journey for the past week and a bit. So many times He's tried to get my attention and He gets it, for a few days. Then life and business and blogging and Facebook and One Tree Hill (I'll explain later) all vie for my time and I'm all to quick to give in. What I've been learning is that my priorities are way out of whack. God revealed to me the Sunday before last that that He is moving and He is stirring. He was been for a while but it is building and the big things that have been prophesied to happen in this island are going to happen soon. And what struck me deep down is that I don't want to miss out. I don't want to be blogging or watching TV when He moves and known that I could have been a part of it. It's been slow and I've failed a lot but with all I've got, and God giving me the rest, I've been working at choosing Him and putting Him first. Asking Him to rework my day and my schedule and my list of "to-do's" so that I can spend some time with Him. It is hard with a daughter.....but I've been working time with Him into time with her. Every morning while I feed her breakfast I read Psalms and Proverbs aloud so not only am I getting His word read in our home, but I am being fed and so is Denay. I'm still having a hard time with putting down the vacuum and the laptop while Denay is napping to get in some quiet time but it's small victories and doing more each day and I refuse to get discouraged this time.
    So. There you have it. I've been trying to focus more on my home and family as they are the responsibilities that God has given me and I want to be all I can be to naturally, blogging, along with other things has gone the the wayside. It's going to take God some time to sort me out but I know that He's not done with me yet! I'll still be around, maybe as much as usual, but I was really feeling led to share with you all where I'm at. Maybe somebody needed to hear this and maybe I'll find a kindred spirit, who knows, but I wanted to be faithful to the direction of the Spirit.
    Now....on to other things! We had a fabulous weekend away with Trev's family. We stayed a little longer than normal since Trevor didn't need to work yesterday and had such a fun afternoon on Sunday playing games and relaxing.
    The Saturday wedding was just lovely. It had to be moved inside due to the rain but the room was decorated so beautifully and all was well! Denay was such a trooper (as usual) and was a little dopey but still going at 10:00pm when we headed home. Thanks to Auntie Shawna and Uncle Paul she got in a little nap in the stroller during dinner and that sure helped.
    :: Some pictures Auntie Shawna took of our little clan ::
    There are lots of other keeping-me-busy things going on around here as well. I've committed to start attending Tuesday night intercessory prayer at church as well as one hour a week of prayer with a partner. Trevor and I are also hoping to get involved with the once a month praise night for the church youth as small group leaders......I'm also so excited that our MOPS (mothers of preschoolers) group is launching in a couple weeks and I've joined the ministry team and have been put in charge of hospitality and planning group events. It all tied in so nicely with the fact that God has placed a burden on my heart for moms and women prayer wise. This coupled with weekly dance practise and bi-monthly dance classes and hopefully starting to scrapbook again has got me feeling a little overwhelm but I know that it's all part of God's moving and transforming me and finally putting to use the gifts He's given me and the ministries He's called me to. I trust He will provide!
    I hope that catches ya'll up on what's going on here and in my heart. I want to make more effort to be more transparent and upfront about what God is doing that we might all uplift and encourage each other through the medium of blogging.
    I can hear my little muffin shaking her crib railing so off I go.
    Friends: May you always trust Him, seek Him and choose Him first. All other things will come once He is in His rightful place at the center of our lives.
    PS-sorry if this reads scattered and random and is full of spelling errors. I know if I re-read that I'll start changing things and I want what the Spirit wanted said to be said in His words, not mine.

    Friday, September 4, 2009

    Man, I have been very neglectful of my blog as of late. Generally we aren't an overly busy household but this past week has just flown by!
    On Wednesday afternoon I was invited to attend a cooking class just around the bend from my place.....about three hours and a whole lot of fun later, I came home with fresh homemade Zucchini Garden Soup and focaccia bread for dinner and blackberry peach cobbler for dessert. Yummo. To make it fun I didn't tell Trevor what I was doing so it was a nice surprise for him!

    I also thought it was hightime I show ya'll how much my little gal looks like her mamma! The upper right and large left photo are picture of my when I was 13-14 months old and the lower left is Denay this afternoon, at almost 14 months. We even have the exact same number of teeth. How I love her!

    Right now I should be helping my husband pack for our weekend trip to the mainland (that we leave for in 10 minutes) will be so good to be with Trev's family and take in J&R wedding! Have a blessed weekend friends...."see" you soon!