Sunday, December 26, 2010

BUSY December!

I always find it hard to keep up with posting during November and December. I always fall behind. WE have so many functions and birthdays during these last two months of the year.
We had a wonderful but different Christmas this year. With my husband in Mexico and my baby brother in West Virginia, things felt a little "off" or "strange" this year. Nonetheless, we had a warm, cozy time of breaking bread with loved ones here and opening lovingly wrapped packages. Then of course there was plenty of laughter! You can't have my son Josh, his cousin Josh, and my youngest son Shane in a room together without loads of antics and laughter. That was all on Christmas Eve.

Christmas day was spent with my parents in their home. Nora, a friend from church joined us for another delicious meal which started off with my father reading an account of the birth of Christ from the gospel of Matthew. Then we watched family videos starting back in November from my birthday, Thanksgiving, Shane's birthday, mine and Agustin's anniversary. November and December sure are busy months at our house. It seems we have so many things to celebrate! But culminating our year by celebrating the birth of our Saviour is top of the list!
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Here are some photos from Shane's 13th birthday on Dec. 5th. I'll post Christmas photos soon.

Happy Thirteenth Shane!


Opening Birthday Gifts!

Oh what after dinner fun! Watching videos on You Tube which gross you out. I recall this one showing a woman popping/draining a boil on her husband's back! Now who would think to video and upload something like that? Now WHO would think it's fun watching something like that? You're looking at the three of them!


Grandma & Shane eyeing her homemade chicken and dumplings he requested fir his
birthday meal.



Shane also requested corn on the cob!




Grandma made the cake Shane requested for his birthday. Weight Watcher's orange diet soda cake topped with mandarin oranges!





In Children's Church






The embarrassing "Mom kisses son in front of people" kiss.







"Now look here woman!"








We do share lots of laughter when together. I love this kid.

In church


What Delilah does for several minutes each time Shane or Agustin leave home. So cute.





Agustin's gift to Shane-a trip to the shooting range!













There's nothing quite like a boy and his dog! Shane telling Delilah goodbye before heading off to shoot stuff.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Night My Life Changed Forever!

Monday was a most wonderful day spent with my hubby. It was, after all, our 24th wedding anniversary! Where have those years gone though? I still can't believe it has been 24 years since I stepped into that crowded living room in Queretaro, Qro., Mexico and first laid eyes on Agustin. The occasion for my visit was a birthday party for his younger brother Elias. My American neighbor, Larry, had told me about Agustin. I smile now as I recall his description of him. "It's a wonderful Christian family and Agustin seems like a nice young man. He's tall for a Mexican!" I remember asking Larry if this Agustin was good looking. Larry's response was that I would have to judge that for myself later at the party. He was more into Agustin's sister than he was into Agustin! LOL Alrighty then, I'd go with him, meet the family and this Agustin guy, and enjoy the free homemade traditional Mexican food! No harm in that, right?

Well that's the night my life changed forever!

More to come later!
In the photos below, Agustin and I at our private reception after the Civil ceremony. Then a picture of my little niece Jackie and Agustin's little sister Berenice leading us out of the small church where our Religious ceremony took place. In Mexico, the church does not recognize a marriage performed by the state, nor does the state recognize the church marriage. So I like to say that although I've never divorced, I have been married TWICE!




Sunday, December 05, 2010

THIRTEEN YEARS...How can it be?

Today, Sunday, is my youngest son's 13th birthday. Don't ask me where the years have gone because I have no idea! What I do know though, is that God sent this child to us just when we needed it most! Our first and only child, Joshua, was ten years old when we found out we were going to have an addition to our little family. I was thirty-six! We had arrived at the point where it was so easy to just pick up and go anywhere. We hadn't used car seats, diaper bags, diapers, formula, wipees, binkies for several years now. Anytime we wanted to jaunt off to a restaurant, store, or to visit friends, our only prep was to notify Josh to jump into the car and buckle up. Boy, did things change after the birth of our Shane! It seemed to take forever to go anywhere! Well, at least the preparation to go seemed to take forever! You know exactly what I'm talking about. "Where's the diaper bag?" " Did you make a fresh bottle?" " Does he have his binkie?" "Should I feed him first?" etc. Of course, I'm not complaining! He has been such a blessing not only to us but to many others. Always a lovable, affectionate type and a great cuddler; even as a baby, he had an infectious laugh which he still has today.
Let me tell you a few things I love about this kid! At thirteen, he is still affectionate and loving; very considerate. He enjoys surprising his dad and I with fully prepared breakfasts. Without being told, he bathes our dog weekly. He cleans up all the dog-poop in the yard twice a week. He is consistent with his trash duties. He is a very good student. Shane has great comprehension. He's a gentle giant! He ministers by serving in our Children's Church. I could go on and on, but instead, I'll post some photos!




Shane shows off his Captain's award from Patch the Pirate Club- 2nd year in a row.






Josh and Agustin visit newborn Shane in nursery while I was recuperating from the C-section.
Agustin and I during Shane's dedication service.




a Proud Grandpa during the dedication service.






For my baby shower, my dad painted the little baskets by hand. We filled them with homemade chocolates as favor.



My first time to lay eyes on my little blessing. He was blowing bubbles!!










Dr. Bruce Shephard visits us in the hospital the day after he performed the C-section.






Me at 9 months,
Our first ultra-sound of baby Shane!

















Thanks for indulging me!
Here's a video clip of Shane's birthday last year. We were so happy to have my nieces and nephew (Josh & Naomy, Jewel, and Jackie and her girlies) with us. Notice Jackie's baby bump. This was before the arrival of little Lexi. I love how much fun the 3 siblings have singing together - breaking out in a multi-cultural celebration!!! Poor Shane was not into it! He had a friend stay over the night before and hadn't slept!!!


video

Sunday, November 28, 2010

"Peace On Earth" December Challenge


Are you looking to make this Christmas season more meaningful?



Are you hoping you can find a few moments of peace during the hectic month of December? Then 'link up' with us for the "Peace On Earth" December Challenge!



Courtney over at Women Living Well has created this challenge. I've checked out Courtney's blog and watched her video which explains what this challenge is all about. I've also linked up and am ready for her weekly tips and encouragement to help me focus on God's Word and on ways to bring peace in my life and home this holiday season.
Won't you join us?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Glimpse Into Our Thanksgiving 2010

We were honored that Nora, a single mom from our church, and her teen daughter and a friend accepted our invitation to join us for Thanksgiving. We were also pleasantly surprised by my brother, who drove down from West Virginia. In this video you'll see him catching a little nap on our Shane's bed! It was a wonderful day with many laughs but most importantly, we all enjoyed a time of reflection on God's goodness to us this past year.


PSALM 100:1 "Make a joyful noise unto the Lord all ye lands, serve the Lord with gladness,come before HIS presence with singing. Know ye that the Lord,He is God. It is He that hath made us and not we ourselves. We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. ENTER INTO HIS GATES WITH THANKSGIVING AND INTO HIS COURTS WITH PRAISE! Be thankful unto Him and bless His name. For the Lord is good, His mercy is everlasting and His truth endureth to all generations."



Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Pam's Birthday Surprise Long Version

I just love this video!!! I watch it over and over and over. I'm starting to remind myself of my boys when they were little and wanted to watch the same thing over and over again. I cry everytime I watch this one though. What great friends I have who made all this happen! What great memories I have of sharing this day with them! And to the gal who purchased my sister's ticket, I'm eternally indebted to you! (YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE!)And to those who bought our dinner at Chi*li's later that night, thank you, thank you, thank you!

Friday, November 19, 2010

MY BIG FIVE-O!!!

Wow have I got a story for you! You're gonna just LOVE it! I promise! But first, a disclaimer. This is a long post with alot of photos. I apologize up front but I really wanted to share this extraordinary day with you-A DAY I'LL NEVER FORGET!
Now if you happen to follow me on Face book, this will be old news to you, but I have to share with the rest of you about my wonderful birthday surprise! Are you ready?

Okay, here goes! I was attending a school reunion in Arcadia, Florida the Saturday before my birthday. Mom had also been a teacher at ACC (Arcadia Christian Center) so we had driven over together. It was wonderful seeing old friends and former faculty I'd worked with for several years before I moved to Mexico.
Photo of a former student and her family.


Here I am standing in the doorway of what was once my classroom! The school is now a daycare center ran by the county for un-wed mothers to utilize as they finish their education.



George and his sweet wife Bonnie helped organize the reunion. He was one of my parent's favorite students back in the day. He has such a wonderful personality.




Mom and I with Barbara, another former student. It was wonderful to hear how she is still serving the Lord! In a very touching testimony, she expressed thanks to my parents for their godly examples and for their strong Christian influence in her life. Her words were heart felt and brought tears to my eyes.



Mom with another former student, Ronnie. It blessed our hearts to learn that he serves as a deacon in First Baptist Church of Arcadia.



Another former student, Lori.

It was the typical school reunion: old yearbooks being passed around, tables covered with old photos, delicious food
(Km & Bill)

lots of hugs and loud laughter,
(Marie, Me, Sherry)



and there were babies being passed around, etc. You know the drill. Anyhoose, around five p.m. things had come to a slow down, some of the attendees had left already when all of a sudden, my nephew from Tampa and his wife walked into the school cafeteria. I had to do a double take. At first sight of them, I was amazed at how much that couple resembled Josh Daniel and Naomy! Then it hit me, that was Josh Daniel and Naomy-in Arcadia!?! "They never attended here. They've never even been to Arcadia! What are they doing here now?" Those are a few of the thoughts that were flying through my head for a brief second. Then I started thinking clearly again (Shut up Clint Vernoy) and walked across the room to hug them and ask what in the world they were doing at my school reunion.
Here I am, surprised that Josh and Naomy showed up at a reunion, over a two hour drive from their home,
for a school they didn't attend!


After a few friends who know them came over for hugs and greetings, Josh turned to me and said; "Aunt Pam, we need you to come out to the parking lot. We have something for you." Well that is when my radar went up! Did they bring my friend Shannon with them? She and I had just chatted early that morning and she had asked some suspicious questions now that I thought about! Had she baked me one of her stupendous cakes and was she going to surprise me with it here in Arcadia with this wonderful group of friends?" I was smiling inside anticipating what my cake would look like and how did they get it all the way from Tampa to Arcadia
without harming it?

As we walked out of the cafeteria, through the school's hall, out the side door, I noticed that a few of my reunion pals had grabbed their cameras and were following us out to the parking lot. Hmmm just what did they know that I didn't?
(Me with my entourage!)

Well as I rounded to the front lot, there I saw it! a HUGE box, wrapped up in newspaper and a big ol' tag which read: "To-Pam, Special Delivery". Oh and by the way, this was the morning after mid-term elections. I was in a great mood due to the gains of conservatives the night before and I noticed right away that one of the headlines on the wrapped box said something about the Energetic GOP! woop woop! So I continued walking and bantering with my nephew, my mind racing the whole time. When I saw that big, ol' box I was convinced it had a mighty big/ tall cake in it because there beyond the box, filming me and my entourage as we approached was Shannon, her husband Michael, and their young daughter Sydney! I started squealing with glee. "Shannon!!! What are you doing here?"

(behold, THE BOX!! and Shannon, Michael, & Sydney in background)


everyone starts yelling at me: "OPEN THE BOX!"



Guess what happens?











Let the screaming commence!
Boy Shannon, that is some cake. You really out did yourself this time girl!
A dear friend paid to get my little sister to me all the way from Paraguay for my birthday!!


Who said fat girls can't jump?
Here we are, still screaming and giggling and crying and ...






Rita, Mom, and I

It was a most glorious of days!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

CAUGHT IN THE ACT!!!

Yes, it's true. My husband caught me kissing another man. He snapped this picture for proof! *tee hee*
What better way to break the ice after such a long absence than to put up silly photos, taken at International Mall a couple of years ago? I sure hope I made you smile!
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Life has been so unusual for me this past year. Can you believe it has been an entire year since Agustin's job upset? Thankfully, we learned and grew through a very negative circumstance. He is coming upon his first year anniversary at his new job, and tonight the regional director informed him they were reassigning him to a different location starting Wednesday. This will make his commute a tad longer, but we think the new location closes for Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. That makes us smile!





Shane and I have been knee deep in school and such. He has grown so much this past year! And is such a good and pleasant boy. I can't believe he turns THIRTEEN in December!





Josh has been having a blast working at Busch Gardens for the past six weeks. You'll never guess what he is getting paid to do? He thinks it's a great thing to receive money for SCARING PEOPLE!!! He has been a Werewolf character for the Howl-O-Scream hours at the park this year. He gets to wear an amazing costume and walk around his zone scaring the wits out of big boyfriends who almost jump into their sweeties arms! That's Josh's favorite reaction to see.





Guess whose birthday is coming up soonm? MINE! I turn the BIG 50 on November 8th! A friend is flying in from Michigan and others are meeting up for a reunion in Arcadia next weekend. It's a small town where my parents and I taught school. I have many wonderful memories of fun people and fun times there.





Well I just wanted to post a little something before I started visiting some of my favorite blogs. I know my cousin Ronnie checks here often and seems so very disappointed when I don't update enough! *wink,wink*





Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

There'll Be No Tamales This Year!


Guess what Friday is? Well, besides being Friday the thirteenth-it's my husband's birthday. Oh and it's Fidel Castro's birthday as well. I often tease my husband about all the traits he has in common with Fidel, such as: same birthdate and they're both dictators! (Just kidding!) sort of.
So here's my question for you-what should I do for my man? I know I can't top last years celebration! His mom and brother flew in from Mexico for ten days and on the day of his birthday we all gathered in the fellowship hall of our church and made homemade tamales with all the fixin's. (homemade salsa, refried beans, Mexican rice, guacamole,...) Okay, I'm drooling now! We had about fifteen friends over and we even sang Mariachi songs to him.



He doesn't have to work Friday. He wants to go to Busch Garden's during the day. He wants to play on his regular soccer team Friday night. I'm considering cooking a Beef Wellington and of course baking a cake; but there certainly will be no tamales for him this year! As far as his gift, well that's a secret!
HERE ARE A FEW - WELL ALOT - OF PICTURES FROM LAST YEARS BIRTHDAY GET TOGETHER.
DO Y'ALL KNOW HOW LABOR INTENSIVE MAKING TAMALES IS?
IT'S AN ALL DAY PROCESS!
MOTHER IN LAW AND BROTHER IN LAW GOT AN EARLY START MIXING THE MASA FOR THE TAMALES

ADDING THE CILANTRO TO THE CHICKEN (tamales filling)
CLINT PUT THE SHUCKS IN TO SOAK
SOME OF THE CORN SHUCKS FILLED WITH MASA
HELPING MY MOTHER IN LAW SPREAD THE MASA



JUST ABOUT EVERYBODY GOT INVOLVED WITH THE PREP

DIGGING IN
I FELL IN LOVE WITH THESE CUTE MARIACHI DANCERS WHICH MY IN LAWS BROUGHT ALL THE WAY FROM MEXICO





ADMIRING HIS NEW SOCCER CLEATS

SHANE GETS A HUG FROM HIS DAD HIS FAVORITE PRESENT--HIS MAMA



FATHER AND SON SHARE A BIRTHDAY HUG


AGUSTIN READY TO BLOW OUT ALL THOSE CANDLES


NIECES AND NEPHEW WITH THEIR "old" UNCLE