Friday, August 29, 2008

Of chapters and chapter books

The Mighty Hunter met with our attorney today. We now know what's
going to happen... sorta

He will file Chapter 7 - just him. I didn't sign ANY personal
guarantees, so I'm protected and half our assets too.

The company will also file Chapter 7.

We have to list Every Single Thing we own. And since we live in his
dad's house, we have to list everything there that is not ours.

Dear Lord but I dread that and all this stuff.

Stinkerbell is very smart. Because she is my kid I'm required to say
that she is smart. The "very smart" part is no less true just because
she is mine.

This was the third week of second grade for her. The tests that
determine her reading abilities on a grade level put her at 3.4
already. (third grade plus 40% progress to fourth grade.) Me being
the Most Aggressive Mom Ever, I want her to advance through the levels
as fast as she can. This is accomplished by reading 10 library books
at each level and taking short comprehension tests on each book. Last
year, she took three tests each day. Her first grade teacher realized
she could handle it and encouraged her to do as much as possible.

Mrs. Second Grade Teacher is only allowing the class to do one book
per day.

Needless to say, but we'll be having a conference soon.

Hello, my name is Keri and I push my daughter to do her best and work
hard, because she has to learn hard work now before she learns she can
coast through school like her mom did. I want her to get the academic
scholarships I didn't get because I was lazy. She will not repeat my
mistakes. And, yes, I am compensating for my personal failures through
my children. Isn't that why we had them in the first place? Isn't
this kinda like parental reincarnation?

No, I don't believe in reincarnation.

I'm going to publish this and watch Stinkerbell not get struck by
lightning during soccer practice. Lucky and I are perfectly safe in
the Pimped Out Mamamobile.

Happy Labor Day Weekend y'all.

Friday Rambling

So, today is Friday. yippee!

I guess it means more when your week is measured by actually getting up and going somewhere and doing something.

Not that I don't get up and do something each day. It's just that my Fridays are filled with the same activities that every other day has. Even Saturday and Sunday. Meals, laundry, diapers, cleaning (or not), bills.

Oh, don't be jealous. It's not all fun and games. Somedays are special, and I get to shower (like today.)

So, today is Friday. But this one is special...

What is so special about today?

Tomorrow is opening day of the 2008 Auburn University Football Season.


What has kept me so busy this week that I haven't had the chance to post anything here?

1 sick day for Stinkerbell
1 scheduled (and cancelled) job interview for me
1 great card design LOST due to program crapping out on me
2 health insurance policies purchased for the family
2 much political crap on tv
2 new card designs listed (go buy something!)
3 trips to Salvation Army with donations
3 trips to the dumpster at the office with trash, of course
3 boxes of Puffs Plus opened and used on the abundance of snotty noses

I will not blog about bankruptcy. I will not blog about bankruptcy. I will not blog about bankruptcy. I will not blog about bankruptcy.......

except for this...

It's still a terrible burden on The Mighty Hunter. He still blames himself. I was doing much better until Misty sent us each very sweet cards that opened up my almost-scabbed-over wounds and made me start crying again yesterday (Hey Misty! It's ok! I loved the card! Thanks! Smooches!) He's meeting with the attorney again this afternoon.

I'm through now. Thankyouverymuch.

almost forgot...



Monday, August 25, 2008

Happy Birthday

One year ago yesterday, my mom left ICU. She left behind the cranial halo (or whatever it's called.)

I breathed easier. I began to relax and leave behind my worries over her survival of the surgery.

The Rottweiler in me came out, though. I'm officially the family's advocate in all things hospital and medical. Lord help the nurses and doctors and staff.

Happy birthday, mom. You were given a new chance at life. And I, for one, am grateful beyond measure for your renewed health and regained strength. You're my best friend, my confidante, my rock, my source of hope, my reminder that I "can do it, Duffy Moon." You're the Stuff. I love you.

I just realized that August sucks. Next year, I'm skipping August. Crap, even if nothing shitty happens, it'll be too hot to breath.

August, what did I ever do to you? Why must you bring terrible, painful, tear-filled days?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

pardon our progress

from an email i sent to my brother and My Friend Rachel. forgive the lack of capitalizations and the rambling. i was just getting my thoughts out...

its ok. could be worse, but only in that "just be thankful you have a solid marriage and no one is dying of cancer" kind of way.

tomorrow he and/or Napoleon will take care of the last things in teh warehouse that belongs to a customer - ie: deliver it.

some woman knocked on all the doors of the office today. the loading dock doors too. shook the office entry door. his truck was parked in the big warehouse. it didn't appear that anyone was there. probably some determined/deranged customer.

he apologized again.

he had the most pitiful "i'm gonna miss this" look on his face tonight while Stinkerbell and Lucky ate supper after soccer practice.

he is pursuing the catastrophe team job with the insurance company. he will be traveling year-round, working 10 days off 4. they will pay for his travel and a lot of his expenses. but he will be living in hotels and away from us - alone every night. missing them do so much and growing up so fast


why is this the price he has to pay? why does HE have to pay the price? why do our kids? this makes me so angry and sad and bitter and depressed and determined and scared - all at the same time.

wonder if the insurance company will let him install a webcam on his computer.

he asked me to help at the office some tomorrow. i'm going to exchange this laptop, with its missing "v" thanks to Lucky and his surprise bombing of a coaster over the top of the screen, for a faster, newer, bigger, cooler version, complete with a leather top and probably a great Swiss Gear bag.

i'm also helping carl do a resume. he's applying for a job at a water plant in Ga. he can retire from here and get whatever his retirement would be and then work over there also and get 2 checks.

he got his personal stuff out of his office tonight. its in boxes in the basement. i never got to take a picture of his office after the renovations were finished. we ordered a set of 3 framed, canvas portraits for his office. we also ordered some for here. so, i guess mom and dad are getting some portraits of us for dad's birthday or to celebrate September or some reason.

this sucks, have i told you that yet? well, i'll say it again now and later a lot more.

this is not about money anymore. this is about our family. how do we recover from this? how do we keep it together and stay close? how do I keep him in the kids lives? how do I maintain him as the leader in our family when he won't be here?

why do i have to do this shit?

when will i shower? how will i manage Stinkerbell to and from school, homework, soccer practice and games, art lessons (probably out the door), Lucky getting the attention he needs/deserves, doctors appointments, changing the light bulbs in the stupid fixtures at my vanity that scare the bejeebus out of me with their 30 year-old bare wires showing, the dogs needing to go to the vet and they make me itch and wheeze, and my job too?

oh, and when will i find the chance to shower? seriously. cuz its already a challenge now.

also, i like to sleep a little and occasionally have 10-20 seconds to myself. the alone time is negotiable, but the sleep thing is a deal-breaker.

have we been that ungrateful and prideful? were we so ingratious as to act like God had nothing to do with the business and its success that we had to lose it to learn some horribly painful difficult heart-breaking lesson? (no, i'm not sure if "ingratious" is a real word, i may have just made it up. whatever. screw it. call Websters and tattle on me. heck, if "ginormous" can be added to the dictionary, so can my imaginary words.)

we worked hard. we did a good job. we provided good products to good people. we worked with great people. we learned a lot. we made a little money. we paid our bills and others did the same - at least for a while. we did our best. we were scared. we were excited. we were confident. we were comfortable. we were growing. we were rewarded and rewarding others. we had hard times. we struggled. we fought. we lost. we are scared. we are sad. we are grieving. we are angry. we are disappointed. we are hopeful. we are humbled. we are repentant. we are filled with regrets over what could/should have been and the price we're going to pay. we are thankful. we are looking for God in this. we are resting in him. we are depending on him. we are reliant on him. we aren't where we should be, but we are getting there.

i'm so dadgummed tired but all i can think about is the price he and Stinkerbell and Lucky are going to pay over the next few weeks and months. and WHEN will it be that God provides him a means to come home to us and stay?

pray for strength for all of us.

More apologies

Mr Nashville didn't make the deal.

We are officially and finally and for-good out of business.

The Mighty Hunter apologized to me again.

He is following up with his job search with the Major Insurance Company for which he used to work, hoping to get another, Different job with them. This is the job that will require him to travel and not work here and be away from us.

Yet, this job has Security and Benefits.

Our company had Security and Benefits too.

Now it has Unpaid Debts and Collectors and Chapter 7.

There will be brighter days. We will look back on these days and be amazed how God got us through.

But today, I'm mourning the loss of something that we spent 3 years building. 3 years of long days and short nights. 3 years of sacrificing time with our kids. 3 years of Responsibility. 3 years of hard work. 3 years of making friendships that will last forever. 3 years of accruing debt that will probably go unpaid. 3 years of building relationships that are now damaged and may never recover. 2 years of Success + 1 year of Economy-Induced Debt and Failure.

So, pray for us and the staff, that we will find work to pay our bills. I know that we are all in God's hands (and it still feels good here,) I just wish I could find work that would allow me to continue to spend time with Stinkerbell and Lucky like we have done. I just wish that The Mighty Hunter didn't have to leave us to find work. I just wish that everyone still worked where they were happy.

I just wish...

And for now, that wish will have to do.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Never mind that other stuff

I don't have any news on the business front. When asked if his day was "good," The Mighty Hunter merely said, "all right, I guess."

Man of many words, he is.

When asked what he thought of Mr Nashville, he said that his opinion of him hadn't changed yet. Meaning, he'd rather "be in a roomful of rattlesnakes." (And if you only knew the degree of his snakephobia!)

He told Bev and Misty to be careful what they wished for.

So, Bev and Misty were at work yesterday, knowing we can't pay them. God love those girls!

Napoleon, CFO and The Mighty Hunter met with Mr Nashville and that's all I know. When I know more, I'll blog it - pinky swear!

moving right along...

You may have noticed (or maybe not) my new Etsy shop thingy over there on my sidebar. I have listed some card designs at And, since we're possibly going bankrupt and all, I thought I might as well pimp it here.

So, go look at what I do with all my spare time. When I'm neglecting home with Lucky, teaching him his colors and shapes and how to read keeping him off the fireplace.

Also! I'm running a SALE!


If you order a design (or 12!) from my etsy shop before September 30, you receive $2 off your first design and $1 off any additional design! No Limits!

"You know those Germans, they always make good stuff"

Anyway, I'm offering YOU! My Bloggy Friends! an additional discount!

"You'll be saying Wow! each time you use it!"

If you use coupon code "bloggy buddy", I'll give you another $1 off each order!

And, if you can tell me which infomercial I'm quoting, well I'll give you a bloggy hug or make up a blog award for you.

That's all I have for today.

Thanks, and I'll be watching for the sales to SKYROCKET!!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Mr Nashville is on his way (edited)

(I'm in big trouble with Stinkerbell for the video post. Sorry, baby. One day you'll have your own kids and will totally understand why I did it anyway.)

This morning, The Mighty Hunter was preparing for a full day. Full in a different way from Friday.


He and Napoleon were to talk with the attorney who would direct the bankruptcy and prepare a list of requirements/needs/pleas to provide the investor.

I know he has analyzed and considered and weighed and re-anazlyed and reconsidered and re-weighed all the potentialities that must be considered.

He told Bev, which didn't surprise me. He trusts her a lot and she is closely involved in any finances regarding the business.

He told Misty, which surprised me. She called our house to check on us Saturday (sweetheart.)

He told Chris, which told me a lot. When we play cards, The Mighty Hunter's cards are always shielded from anyone's possible glances. If he were on the World Poker Tour, he would have on a hat, dark glasses and a fake moustache.

::I just burned my tongue on a spoon that has been in my Easy Italia Roasted Garlic Parmesan free sample.::

If he is telling anyone more than Bev, if he is telling more than ONE person besides Bev, he has hope. He has a positive attitude.

He has hope.

I have no more fear about the situation. The Lord has taken it from me. Rather, I gave it to him since he kept telling me that there was no reason to fear. I know we are in his HANDS. And it feels very VERY good here.

I also know that whatever happens today and over the next few days and weeks is his Will. And I will praise him through it.

So, we withdrew this weekend.

Saturday, I didn't change out of my pj's all day long. Neither did Stinkerbell - until bedtime and I insisted that she change since the Lickingest Dog In The World had preserved his title on her pj pants and she stunk.

We napped and ate junk food and watched tv and played on the 'puters.

Yes, we have 3 laptops in the family. Stinkerbell got The Mighty Hunter's retired laptop for her 6th birthday.

Yes, I'm aware of our exceptional geekitude.

Sunday, we showered.

But, wait! There's more!

We put on clean clothes!

And left the house for something other than sweet and sour mix!

We went to Carl and Bev's house to swim and eat dinner and for me to do her resume.

Oh! And we did this...

You will ignore the big blue plaid pj-clad butt. You will see a tiny, firm butt that doesn't wear granny panties. You will see clean, styled hair. You will leave kind, however untrue, comments telling me I'm beeeyooooootiful and I don't have a hick accent at ALL!!!

Thank goodness her nose was clean.

Tomorrow I will tell you how I regained my title as Most Aggressive Soccer Mom. And probably some other stuff. And hopefully some very hopeful news full of hope and maybe even - I don't know - a little hope.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

que sera, sera

Well, here I lie. Awake at 2:25am. Everyone but the dogs (who won't shut up barking at the moon) is asleep.

I blame The Mighty Hunter. I had Lucky asleep and was ready to put him to bed, when The Mighty Hunter called his brother and was just talking Too Loud. I took Lucky upstairs and was trying to get him back to sleep, when The Mighty Hunter was overcome with his Loud, Funny Laugh.

And that's when I realized I would be wide awake when Lucky finally did get back to sleep.

at 12:30.

::grumble gripe complain huff puff::

So, yesterday (Friday) was a terribly painful day. The Mighty Hunter and his little Napoleon partner announced to all the employees that the business was closing. Most of the office staff stayed way past 5, not wanting to leave.

I wasn't there for the announcement - thank you, Jesus! - but came there afterwards to reimburse someone for fuel out of our personal account. I cried The Ugly Cry a lot. I wore my sunglasses the whole time I was there. I hugged everyone and told them what they mean to us.

We are planning a cook-out for sometime later this month.

Napoleon is not invited.

These people have been extended family for the past 3 years. I hate knowing they're going to the unemployment office Monday because our business failed.

Or maybe not...

Last night, Napoleon called and told The Mighty Hunter that the owner of the store that is 90% of our customer base contacted him and offered to loan the money.

Yes, we already had arranged a loan to get us through and keep us operating - from The Mighty Hunter's dad.

But this guy has a vested interest (other than the father-son thing) to keep us in business. His customers (who will not be getting their orders that they've made partial payments for) will get their product. He will not be sued by them. He will not have to sue us and the manufacturers.

win-win? maybe

The Mighty Hunter doesn't trust this man very much. So, that's a huge hurdle that must be overcome.

But he feels the obligation to get the details of the offer and consider it.

false hope? maybe

If this store owner will loan the money/buy into the company AND continue to allow us to sell to his customers AND smooth things over with the other stores..

well just maybe

All The Mighty Hunter and I want to do is follow God's will.

I realized, when I returned home from telling everyone goodbye, that we are all in God's hands. And you know what? That feels pretty darn good.

If only I had realized this days (weeks?) (months?) (years!) ago.

That's the thing about self-sufficiency and independence. God wants to us depend on Him. He wants to supply our needs. Sure He uses all kinds of tools in the world to provide for us. But I'm certain we lost sight of how we MUST keep Him in control.

So, please continue to pray for us and the staff. The nails aren't in the coffin just yet. There may be someone on the way with a defibrillator.

I can't tell you how very VERY much all your kind comments and prayers mean to me. This is the kind of situation that is difficult to share with just anyone. But being all bloggy anonymous (mostly, anyway) makes it possible for me to pour out my heart and get the racing, anxious, exhausting thoughts out of my head. You are wonderful people. I thank Jesus for each of you.

I hope your Sunday is wonderful.

I hope our Monday is hope-FILLED.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Grieving (edited to remove the autocorrections provided by my iPhone)

I feel like someone has died. A huge part of our lives from the past
three years is ending, and I'm a bundle of raw nerves.

I feel like a Dutch dike, and there's a very ADD boy plugging my leaks
but getting distracted by the birds flying by and the wind on his
cheeks and the scent of tulips.

And when I cry I can't speak. This may be a blessing for The Mighty
Hunter, but it makes for an Ugly Cry several times a day.

So I sit in line to pick up Stinkerbell at school. I see the other
mom's and dads and wonder if their day sucked as much as mine. I
wonder if the teachers can see my red puffy eyes through my old,
scratched Bolles. And I try to form words that accurately describe my


But most of all, I think of how very much I need the comfort of my
Savior. And the tender hugs of my babies.

There are brighter days coming.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

He broke down

He came home to get a notebook he had forgotten. I warmed him a plate of spaghetti left over from last night. He took Lucky for a ride in the Rhino. He cried when he told me that the business will be closing.

He apologized for "not being able to provide" for us.

He sees the very likely possibility that he will have to take work that requires him to travel all the time.

He cried to not be taken away from his family.

I hugged and kissed him. I told him I love him. I told him I'm proud of him. I told him I'm not disappointed in him.

We prayed together. He begged God to not take him away from us.

He's meeting with a bankruptcy attorney tomorrow.

I'm going to leave resumes around town. We have to get health insurance.

I have to find the words to tell Stinkerbell.

I have to stop crying too.

I'm scared to death. What do I do? What will the next days, weeks and months be like? How will I get through them?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


Tomorrow is the big day. It's crunch time. Either our company's primary customer base stays with us or not. If not, we're out of business. If so, we're walking the thin, narrow, straight and narrow line to keep in business.

The Mighty Hunter told me tonight that he is tired of fighting. I'm tired of it too. But it's worth the fight.

He's worried about some of the people who work for us. Mainly Bev. She's married to his uncle. She's a DEAR friend. She's wonderful. She's never actually searched for a job.

But she's gonna be fine.

We still believe.

We still need prayers.

Thank you.

From an email The Mighty Hunter sent me last week:

When God leads you to the edge of the cliff, trust Him fully and let go, only 1 of 2 things will happen, either He'll catch you when you fall, or He'll teach you how to fly!

God closes doors no man can open & God opens doors no man can close.


I've been HONORED with the Arte y Pico award. This was created/made to be given out to bloggers who inspire others with their creative energy and their works, whether it be writing, artwork or more.

Mrs. Nespy was kind enough to award me with this. It makes me blush and snicker to think that my ramblings here "inspire" anyone in any way.

'Cause I write here to keep my sanity, not to inspire. I am aware that some things I write are minimally entertaining. But that's only because I'm not afraid to embarass myself in the blogosphere.

So, it is with great humility and pride that I accept this award and spread the love a little myself...

The rules (because I don't want to be bloggy-cursed for not following the rules):

1. Put the logo on your blog. (above is the pic of the award)
2. Add a link to the person who awarded it to you.
3. Nominate at least 5 other blogs.
4. Add links to these blogs on your blog.
5. Leave a message for your nominee on their blog.

My awardees (in random order):

1. The Tales of T and Super B
2. Will Blog for Shoes
3. Having It All!
4. Southern Transplant at the North Pole ('cept she's not freezing anymore!)
5. Operation Motherhood

Hello, nice to meet you

I'm not the only one who uses a bloggy pseudonym. I could link to most of the bloggers that are in my Reader, but that would take too long and you'd get bored OR you'd click away and read about their Much More Exciting And Interesting Lives and you'd never get back to me and that would break my bloggy heart and you'd also never finish reading this terribly insufferably long run-on sentence.


I've written as the Auburn Gal Always since the beginning of my blog. It seemed like a way to be unique, while instantly communicating my affection for my alma mater and DISTANCING myself from that other school in our state (blech!) I'm still perfectly happy being the Auburn Gal Always - because it still describes me very well.

But it is not nearly a complete description of me. Unfortunately, there's just not a neat and succinct name for everything I do and everything I am.

Christ Follower, Wife, Mom, Daughter, Sister, Lover, Friend, Blogger, Wannabe Photographer, Amateur Graphic Designer, Chef, Chauffer, Auburn Fan, Softball Mom, Soccer Mom, Insecure, USA Network Original Series Addict

See, there are just not enough words that starts with a vowel there. Just try pronouncing it.


So, today, I'm bloggy outing myself.

(Not that way.)

I suppose I should add Straight to the list above.


I will continue to use blogonyms for my husband and children. I don't want to take away their privacy without their permission. But for reasons that are income-related, I am now proud to introduce myself...

My real name is Keri. I am 37 (yikes) and am married to my college sweetheart, The Mighty Hunter. Next month, we will celebrate 16 years of stressfilled blissful happy marriage. No, it hasn't always been rainbows and unicorns and puffy hearts, but it has been always been good, in general. He is a wonderful, big, gruff teddy-bear of a guy. We have two children. Our daughter, Stinkerbell, turned 7 in January 2008. Our son, Lucky, was born 5 days after Stinkerbell's birthday in January 2007 (that makes him 18 months right now.) We live in NE Alabama (specifically, Fort Payne) - a small piece of heaven that God dropped down here for a few of us to enjoy before we join him. We are all AVID fans of our beloved Auburn University and obsessively watch their football games and love to drive down to a game each season.

So, there. You can start googling "Keri" in Fort Payne, Al, and see what you get.

But you can still call me the Auburn Gal Always - cause it totally fits.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

File this under secret (?) humiliation

I dressed myself up this morning and left Lucky with my mom while I left resumes for a job at Stinkerbell's school.

I returned home with lunch from Sonic and didn't enjoy it. I'm not enjoying much in the way of food right now. Which is ok. I could really stand to lose some of the fluff that has collected on my butt and thighs and tummy.

After lunch, the sky turned dark and the wind made the weeds in the yard sway. I realized that my trip to W-M should be made quick, fast and in a hurry to keep me from getting soaked.

I ditched my nice, job-seeking clothes for the jeans I wore yesterday and a tshirt.

Groceries purchased.

Stinkerbell retrieved from school.

Oreo Blast from Sonic consumed.

Resume and writing samples emailed to job prospect.

Couch sitting begun.

But there is something beneath me making my couch potatoeing not so comfy. I reach down to brush away the whatever the kids left on the couch that I didn't notice. Nothing is there. But there is a small lump inside the seat of my jeans.

The jeans I wore yesterday were still holding the panties I wore yesterday. In a nice, little, lumpy wad.

Hello. My name is Stupid.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

the elephant in the room - and more than you wanted to read but read it anyway

I've been a little absent here lately. There are several reasons excuses I will offer...

  • we've taken a few trips

  • I've tried hard to spend the last few days before school starts doing special things with Stinkerbell

  • we've all been sick with a cold

Yet the main reason I've been posting less is that I'm ignoring an elephant in my life. When I wrote this, I was struggling with the fear of changes looming on the horizon for me. I've resisted them. I've procrastinated. I've ignored. I've refused. All of this has been for naught.

The economy has hit us hard.

Owning our own business has been a really wonderful blessing over the last three years. We've had freedom and flexibility in schedule for The Mighty Hunter to be able to spend time with the kids, take time off, travel a little, etc. The burdens were outweighed by the benefits for a long time.

But owning a business that supplies home construction products in the middle of a housing crisis is now a serious liability.

Business is bad. It's terribly slow. We've (meaning The Mighty Hunter) have had to release sales reps from their contracts because of slow sales. We are now about to begin lay-offs within the office staff. It's hard to cover payroll.

Tonight, The Mighty Hunter told me that bankruptcy is looming very VERY near. Without an immediate investment (which would be a miracle,) it will be over next week.

I've seen him like this before. June 2000. His mom was dying. There was nothing he could do but watch it happen. There was nothing I could do to help him.

Nothing but tell him "I love you". And now I add "I'm proud of you."

He has done a wonderful job - even now - running the business. He has made mistakes but has shown grace and grown in his understanding of business and his faith has grown as well.

But I'm worried about him. I'm worried what this will do to him.

No, I don't need to worry. I know what kind of man he is. He's the kind of man that will face the situation with strength and poise and concern for others. He will sacrifice for us and them. He will continue to do his best to do the right thing. He will find other work and continue to support us. He will land on his feet. He will pray on his knees. He will make it through this.

We will make it through this.

But it is scary not being able to see what is on the other side.

But don't I know?

Hebrews 11:1 - Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.

If you pray, I'd appreciate it. If you don't, I wish you'd start now.

Dear Lord,

Thank you for who you are. Thank you for all the wonderful gifts you've given me - a terribly undeserving excuse for a follower. Thank you for the opportunity to learn more about you through EVERY circumstance.

Help me to be who I need to be right now. Give me the strength and courage and grace I need for the days that follow. Give me peace enough to sleep, even when my sinful, worry-loving spirit resists.

Forgive me, once again, for failing you and those around me.

Bless me, Lord. Bless others through me. Bless me through those around me. Protect me and my family and those that are threatened by these circumstances we face together. Provide for all our needs. Help us to make good choices and do the right things.

Thank you again. I will praise you in this storm and will lift your Name up to the heavens . Only you are worthy of my praise.

I trust you now - especially now. Only you can bring us to the other side of this without the ghosts of "failure" and "bankruptcy" and "disappointment".

Forgive our pridefulness in our own accomplishments. Without You, none of what has happened over the last three years would have been possible. Without You, I would have no hope at all. Without You - I don't even want to consider it. Thank you that I do have you and I don't have to worry about being "without" ever again.

Jesus, your sweet Name, brings a smile to my tear-streaked face. Jesus, hold our hands and guide every single step we take - not just now, but forever.

Forgive us for not worshipping you like we should. Forgive us that Stinkerbell has to ask us to take her to church. Jesus, forgive us.

I love you, Lord. I know you love me and for that, if for nothing else, I rejoice and my heart soars and I can cry with the ecstasy of joy, knowing that no matter what happens here, today, tomorrow or 20 years from now, I will always have you and - AND! - one day, I will be with you.

My mind tells me to stop now, but my heart wants to talk about you more. I need to share my love for you. I need to express it. I need to speak it. I ache to sing it at the top of my lungs.

I remember a time, 9 years ago, when I was in a very difficult job and was struggling to make it through the days. I begged you every single day, as I drove to work, to tell me to turn around and go home and call in and say "I quit." For almost a year, I begged this of you. But there was something there I needed to learn. I needed to learn that you were trying to get my attention. I needed to learn that the biggest leassons are often learned the hard way. I needed to learn that you were using me there - I still don't know why or how. I needed to learn that it wasn't time to leave - I must wait on YOUR timing.

Jesus, I still struggle with this whole timing thing. But you know that already. I tell you about it every day. No. Forgive me, Lord. That's not true. I don't tell you about it every day. I tell you about it when I need something from you. The truth is that, lately, I only talk to you when I need something from you. Forgive me for treating you like my Holy atm. Just forgive me.

Let your warm, loving light shine through me tomorrow. Make me into the person you want me to be - no matter how painful it is to me. Did I really just ask you to do that? I realize I have opened the proverbial flood gates now. I'm ready to be changed by you. Break my will and smother my pride.

Put me where you want me. Open my mouth only for your Words. Shut my mouth all the other times. Tell me what to do. I want to experience life on your terms now. My way hasn't been working so well. I want to see it your Way now.

Thank you, again, for the endless list of blessings. Thank you for my salvation. Thank you for my family. Thank you for the things I learned today. Thank you for the promise of a better tomorrow - even if I don't see it happen tomorrow.

Thank you, Lord. Amen.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Betcha never heard this one...

While trying to keep Stinkerbell awake so that she would go to bed at
a decent hour, I told her to open her eyes.

"I'm awake Mommy. I'm just blinking long."

"I love you"

Said today by Lucky, "Dada I luhhh you"

Then "Dada I luhluhluhluhwuhwuhwuh."

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Jealous yet?

The view from the most comfortable mattress in the world.

Last minute/chance

Don't hate me.

I woke up this morning atop the most comfortable mattress in the world.

On Dauphin Island.

I'm typing this from my iPhone. Cuz I'm on the can keeping close to
the baby sleeping peacefully on aforementioned mattress.

The swimming pool is my next stop.

Stinkerbell is putting together a kitten puzzle with fiancé.

The Mighty Hunter is building a shelf with his dad.

School starts Wednesday. We finished our school shopping today.

Life is good for now.

Praying fervently for the economy to turn around and/or a wealthy
philanthropic investor to keep the business afloat.

Trusting that He will provide......

Hoping all of you are enjoying the last days of summer before school
starts AND avoiding this HEAT!!