Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The Half Blood Prince

Is anyone into Harry Potter?
I read the books. Every single one. Several times.
I love them.
I love escaping into the imaginary world of Harry Potter.
Diagon Alley.
Weasley's Wizarding Wheezes.

It's so magical. :)


P.S. If you'd ever like to have tea and discuss Harry Potter and it's positive and negative effects on our children and teenagers and, heck, adults even...I'd love to. I love talking about theology and children's fiction.


This is a time when I call all of you who have faith in your heart to pray. I have a friend named Matt who has been fighting cancer for a long time and the Lord has blessed him with many victories. It's a heart wrenching fight and I ask you all to pray for Matty now as he continues to deal with this sickness.
I just got news this morning that Matt has been sick for a few weeks now and the cancer is back. Please pray.
My pastor posted a verse that just rings true in my heart right now, so I will share it with you.

Psalm 34
1 I will extol the LORD at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.
2 My soul will boast in the LORD; let the afflicted hear and rejoice.
3 Glorify the LORD with me; let us exalt his name together.
4 I sought the LORD, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.
5 Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.
6 This poor man called, and the LORD heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles.
7 The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them.
8 Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.
9 Fear the LORD, you his saints, for those who fear him lack nothing.
10 The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.
My heart is aching right now for dear Matt. Pray for him now. And pray for his parents who, I'm sure, are in deep pain right now over their precious boy. As a new mommy, my ache for Matt has changed in so many different ways. He is a courageous young man and I call on you now to pray.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hello, Dolly!

Well, I must admit that I was a tad scared of the impending hurricane...with such a silly name. Wouldn't it have been embarrassing to say that a sweet name like Dolly ripped through our town? Sad!

This morning I woke to the high winds rattling our little home and wondered what the weather would bring. Since we live so far south, we got hit first with the rain and thunder and lightning and wind beating down on my beautiful roses. (one bush broke because the trailess was uprooted..sad day!)

Were any of you affected by dear old Dolly? She's still churning the cottonfields of south Texas and Mexico as I type this, but thankfully she is moving away from us. I do not like storms, even though they do produce some extraordinary pictures! I pray the people in Dolly's path took the necessary precautions and are safe and sound. What interesting swirls of wind and rain, hurricanes are....it baffles me that every region on this planet has some sort of natural disaster to answer to. I think I prefer hurricanes to tornadoes, mudslides, wildfires, and tsunamis. But you know, none of us are immune to the natural destruction our earth can muster. I read a book when I was 10 about a girl who used to paint seascapes and she used to envision God's fingertips in the waves and she could make the water come alive for people to see.

I always wanted to be like her. :) Oh how dreamy I was. I wonder if Wesley will be as dream-filled as Nathan and I are....I say "we are both that way" in the sense that Nathan, too, has a way of envisioning great things and he can sit and stare at the sky and think about nothing and everything. God knew what He was doing when he paired us up. :) Surely Wesley and any other future children (the Lord willing) will inherit some form of our imagination. If not, well then they will just have to deal with parents who speak Narnian. Mom and I were discussing children and if we had another baby, what would their room theme be. Since Wesley's is Around the World in 80 Days, I think it would be REALLY cool to do a Narnia room theme. I could go on forever with all those silly ideas.

I was reading at Barnes and Noble the other day (where I ran into Tara and Gauge and Chris!) and I saw a book with cool room ideas. Naturally I pounced on that and discovered a house with a SECRET PASSAGE built in through the home office. It was through the bookcases in their study. THAT is exactly what I would want. This family used it as their "special space" for the kids to play in. Shoot, I would want to play in that kind of room, wouldn't you?

Alright, I've digressed, I have no idea how I ran from a silly named hurricane to home decor. That's a woman for you, isn't it?

Wesley was very enamoured with the storm today. (see the pictures above) He was wondering what that loud thunder was and why it wasn't as hot as it usually is. He took good naps today! It still amazes me how quickly babies grow. A month ago Wesley began "Army Crawling" and just this week he is crawling on his hands and knees. He's 6 months! So fast has my baby grown. He had his check up yesterday and he's in the 85th percentile for size and weight. He is very "proportionate" and very healthy according to our ped. and he smiled and charmed the nurses left and right. I asked Dr. B what the heck the percentile stuff meant and all he said is that Wesley is very tall and long and his weight matches that. I can't remember his measurements...sorry! I wrote it down though.

He told me to start Wesley on meats. And I did. And let me just say they are nasty smelling! :) He only liked it mixed with his green peas (his favorite veggie) and bananas and apples are still his favorite fruit. Nathan likes bananas. hehe.. Oh and still no sign of teeth, I know it's early, but he had been teething so monstrously that I thought "surely! he would have had one by now". It is not so.

Alright, I've been here long enough, time to go play with my boys! Stay dry!

Saturday, July 19, 2008


So I just spent a week at one of my most favorite places on this planet....Camp Zephyr. You wonder why it's one of my happy places? Well....it's a place where I found quite a bit of myself, where I met my husband, where I developed lifelong friendships with people near and far, where I heard messages of truth and experienced worship in a beautiful and passionate way and where I had some of my most intimate times with my Jesus.

While I was there (this time as a camper...it's been 3 summers since I've worked there) so many memories flooded my heart. I was suddenly aware of the changes that the camp has experienced and the changes that my own soul has experienced.

Once upon a time, when Trevor Carpenter was the Programs Director, the Zephyr Zombie was still a fun story to pass around camp, and pizza was still served every monday with corn....I was a 14 year old girl who KNEW that my summers were meant to serve at Zephyr and I deeply desired to be used for the Kingdom of Heaven. I loved being reaffirmed, reassured that where I am and what I strive for is still for the Kingdom, whether at Zephyr, or wherever God places my family...that there are people out there with great needs and that we can meet them with my great Lord's strength. It was wonderfully freeing.

I want to make a shout out to the band The Pearl Merchant Band and to the Zephyr Staff. They were awesome. And the speaker Brandon was pretty incredible. He spoke truth and wisdom. We had a fabulous time. :) (if I find a link to him, I will post it)

Oh and we took Wesley and he was so marvelous. What a great camp baby! He got some great love from so many people. I loved strolling around my old stompin grounds with my son and my husband. (Nathan surprised us and showed up on Wednesday and stayed through the week!) What blessings we had poured out on us. :)
I look forward to seeing the fruits of this past week.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Nate's First Blog

So....Jade is mad. She set up this family blog and apparently I have neglected my duties as part of the family in keeping it updated. Of course, I don't hear her telling Wes or Stormy, "You need to blog! People think I am the only one in this family because I am the only one that ever blogs on our family blog!" But, being the leader of the household, I guess I can understand why I take most of the heat.

Not that we use this blog to update each other on what is going on in our lives, but so that our fellow bloggers and nonbloggers/readers are kept up to date on the latest developments in the House of Payne. Since I am typing as thoughts come to me, I am on the verge of wasting my first blog diving into the psychology of why bloggers blog and the pros/cons of blogging and our culture's move towards online socialization and away from real, personal interaction. But....I don't think that is a very good way to attract future readers and since Jade seems to have a regular audience, I'd hate to bore the regulars away. So...on to the real blog.

I want to show you this video of Wesley pretending to eat an icecream cone.

Ever been caught with your tongue out?

Pressing On

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Taco Smell

So today Nathan and I enjoyed a leisurely morning of sleeping in and having a late breakfast together with our little Wesley. We ran some errands and "cruised" a bit, enjoying the sunshine and eachother's company.

My brother calls and says he bought my parents a Wii for their anniversary present (he's a good son) and said he was off from work, so Nathan, Wesley and I cruise on over to Bg's casa from Barnes and Noble where we were currently reading up on Access for Dummies (nathan's book) and National Parks And Your Family (my book).

So we hang with Bg for a bit, check out the latest updates on Mission: Renovate (he's fixing up his house). We run to Home Depot, and low and behold; we're hungry! We stop at Taco Bell, buy a few cheap burritos, head back to Bg's house, bite into a delicious wraps of bean, cheese, and rice....and I feel something not right in my mouth....so I politely spit into a napkin and pull out a tag that says "Best By Oct102008"

Yes. I was a victim of taco smell.

I hate fast food.

I had a good day, but the moral of the story is....avoid fast food! It's never a good idea.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008


I just wanted the world to know that I absolutely spanked Nathan, Heather, and Eric @ Scrabble last night. :) I was extraordinary and blew them out of the water. Yes, my head is swelling with pride as we speak, but you get my drift....I'm awesome. I went out first and I played every single stinkin letter in my tray....I am a genius. You may challenge me, if you dare...muahahahahahahaha.

OK that's enough of that. I'm over it. Really, I am. :) We were going to re-match, but we're old ninnies and had to go to bed early. Oh and that is NOT my handwriting up there...that is my husband's. :) I inherited my mother's and my grandmother's penmanship.

In other news...Stormy woke me up at 4 in the morning to go potty and I didn't turn on the back porch light before I let her out, so I didn't see the monster that lay in our path and I heard the hissing before I knew what it was....it was a POSSUM! I hate vermin. I screamed and Stormy attacked with her hair standing straight up and I shouted at her to get back and she stopped where she was and just like that **snaps** it disappeared! I brought her inside and we just looked out the window into the night wondering where the beast had fled to. Probably some evil trash can somewhere down the street where it hides and waits for night... I was all tingly and felt sooooo gross. I had to go wash my hands several times to feel ok. And Stormy still hadn't got to potty but I refused to let her out near the beast if it was still out there....so Nathan comes to my aid and discovers what happens and lets her outside himself...I go back to the safety of our bed.

Jeez!! yeck! the hissing noise alone will give you nightmares!

Moving on to more pleasant thoughts.....tomorrow is my parents wedding anniversary! How wonderful. :) It makes me happy to see them have fun together and go on trips and be silly together. I'm thankful for their example of marriage in my life, Happy Anniversary you crazy kids! :):)

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Hand Soap of the Past

So the other day I asked my handsome husband to stop by the store and pick up some baby food and handsoap for the restrooms (as we were out). I usually get the pearl peach moisturizing soap (because I have lizard hands...unfortunately). Well I made no specification as to which soap to grab and Nathan brings home a simple off brand clear handsoap. I think to myself, "not a big deal, this stuff goes so fast" (We use refill big jugs). Well, I begin to refill our soap dispensers and I gather this scent wafting up to my nose. It has this familiar smell...I KNOW this smell from somewhere. I just do.

So I wash my hands.

And it hits me. This is the same soap that used to be in the soap dispensers at Travis Baptist Church. My old church. The church where I grew up. The church where I was saved The church where I learned how to pray. The church where I learned how to learn. Memories began to flood my mind and heart (and nose hehe) and I just stood there staring into the bathroom mirror at myself and thought about how far the Lord has brought me from that place as a 13 year old girl walking down an aisle to discover more about the burning desire for "more" that was swelling in my heart. I thought about moments of joy and pain and stretching moments of frustration. I thought about the people who walked with me, before me, behind me. I just stood there taking in the scent...the memories. The trips. The people.

The people.

I have traveled far from my place at Travis Baptist Church (where Nathan's great grandfather used to preach, coincidentally) and have found a new home to continue on my life journey.

But I shall never forget those years.
Or that hand soap.