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Living Hope

Spring has arrived here in Kentucky.  Vibrant green fields are sprinkled with wildflowers in brilliant shades of purple.  I'm told they're weeds, but it doesn't detract from their beauty.  Meanwhile, the trees are budding with with the stunning pastels of dogwoods, cherry blossoms, and red buds.  Even the maples and oaks are starting to show signs of life with tiny sprouts of foliage. Accentuating this scene yesterday was the sapphire sky and an early sunset that cast a harmonious golden hue over the landscape on my drive home. It was the most perfect scene for a Palm Sunday.  Except when I looked at it, I was reminded that the original Palm Sunday of Holy Week also seemed perfect with people lining the streets shouting "Hosanna," and proclaiming Jesus as their King.  Then came the last supper, the betrayal, the weeping in the garden, the suffering, the darkness, and the death. The week between Palm Sunday and Easter was one of waiting, and hurting.  What started
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Happy 11th Birthday, Ellie

Today is Ellie's 11th birthday. As with each passing year, I have spent some time reflecting on things I want her to know as she grows.  Unfortunately, the most important lessons in life are often learned in the most difficult circumstances, but that's another story for another day.  As she inches closer to the teenage years, her friendships are becoming much more important in her life.  So, if I was imparting wisdom this year, it would be on the importance of surrounding yourself with good people. One of my favorite stories in the entire Bible is a tender moment that occurs in Exodus between Moses, Aaron, and Hur.  In it, the Israelites are fighting an intense battle with their enemies.  When Moses has his rod stretched out with his arms extended in the air, the Israelites are winning.  When he drops his arms, the they begin to lose. Eventually, Moses becomes so fatigued that he can no longer hold up the weight of his own arms.  It's in that moment that his people (Aaron a

Happy Son's Day

  I’m back with some words of wisdom for National Son's Day. Admittedly, I have no idea what I would want to know if I were entering manhood, so I could miss the mark on this one.   Nonetheless, I have a few truth nuggets that might prove to be worth sharing from mother to son.   1.       1. Life is hard.   I shared this one with your sister yesterday, and I haven’t changed my mind. Probably never will.   But it’s the truth.   Life is hard, but it’s also wonderful and beautiful, fun and frightful. I hope you have enough hard to keep you humble, enough success to keep you inspired, and enough adventure to keep your heart alive.   Most importantly, I hope you find joy in every season and in spite of every circumstance you face.   2.       2. Dream Big.   You’ll hear that a lot, but I want to add something that I wish someone had told me. Dream big, but don’t be afraid to change that dream.   People change and so can your dreams.   This is not failure.   Not at all. It means y

Happy Daughter's Day

I saw on Facebook yesterday that it was National Daughter's Day.  I think we can all agree that in spite of the negativity around social media, these little made up holidays are kind of nice. I was thinking about my caption, I realized that I had much more to say than could possibly fit into a social media post.  So here, I sit a day late, pecking away at this keyword that I have once again left neglected for far too long.  I think the greatest gift I could give my daughter are some words of hard earned wisdom. 1. Life is really hard. But it's also wonderful and exciting, and confusing, and delightful, and absolutely, undeniably worth living.  So just let go, take a deep breath, and enjoy the ride.  2.Everyone has a story.  Everyone.  And if you're really lucky, they'll tell you about it.  Always take time to listen because in between the highs and the lows of their journey is life, and wisdom, and something worth sharing.  You will have more in

Walt Disney World 2023 - Day Two

We started our first official day in Valdosta with just a short drive to Orlando.  After a quick breakfast, we gassed up the car and hit the road, arriving around noon.  For this trip we stayed at Disney's Yacht Club Resort , which was beyond amazing.  Of course, I will do a full review after I wrap up these daily posts!  But first, back to the recap... as we walked into the lobby we received a text notification that our room was ready, so we headed straight upstairs to check it out. After a quick tour of our room, we unpacked and headed for lunch.  Eager to swim, we settled on the quick-service dinning location at the resort.   The Market at Ale and Compass  was conveniently located near the elevators closest to our room, so it was easy access for food, drinks, and the gift shop.  Ellie had a chicken salad, and Eli had a ham melt on pretzel bread.  Eric and I both chose the Cuban sandwich.  I can report that we could have easily ordered two meals and shared because the portions we

Disney World 2023 - Day One

  Hello again! We just got back from the most magical vacation at our very favorite place, Walt Disney World!!  In order to get the creative juices flowing, I thought I would start with a daily recap of our trip, sorta like a "day in the life" post.  These will be high level and mostly for memory's sake.  Once I wrap them up, I will go back and do really detailed posts about where we ate, what we did, tips & tricks, etc! Before we get started, I just want to throw out a little disclaimer.  Ellie will be in a lot more pictures than Eli because he's a teenager who refuses to participate in the photo session fun.  However, I can guarantee you that he was indeed there and thoroughly enjoyed himself.  Now that we have that little PSA out of the way, let's go! Like everyone else, we are always looking for ways to save some money for future trips, and driving is one of the easiest ways to do that. With that in mind, we skipped the flight this time in favor of a littl

Disney On Ice

Ellie and I have longstanding tradition of going with my mom to see Disney on Ice every year.  After a very long hiatus due to the pandemic, it was absolutely amazing to be back this year.  As always, Gigi came in clutch with front row seats.  We drove up to Lexington early on Saturday morning and made it just in time for lunch.  We were excited to visit with my family, do a little shopping with my sister and meet up with my sister-in-law and niece before the show. Ellie was practically beside herself as we were escorted down to our rink-side seats.  The view was absolutely spectacular, and the company was even better.  We cheered, and clapped and waved as our favorite characters took the stage, and the arena was bursting with energy as little voices sang right along to the familiar Disney tunes.  With scenes from iconic movies such as "The Little Mermaid," "Moana," "Tangled," "Beauty and the Beast," and "Frozen,"  we were wildly entert