Ain’t No Party Like a Baptist Party

PrintThere’s a reason why I haven’t written a post in two months. Well, technically I wrote a few posts in my head during that time. And trust me, they were SO GOOD (kidding). It’s a shame those words never made their way onto my keyboard. But here’s why:

Back in February, my pastor, who happened to be the President of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Pastor’s Conference, called me into his office to ask me if I would do all the social media for the national conference. You know, in my spare time. (laughs uncontrollably)

But here’s the deal – Mr. Right and I are in the midst of saving for something big. BIG. I can’t go into details, but the same week we decided to save for that thing, I was offered this freelance job. And, actually, several others. All in the same week.


Some of our team from the SBC Pastors’ Conference

God was providing.

And so, for four months, I have been working my regular job, and then putting the kiddo to bed, jumping back on the computer, and working until bedtime. Several nights a week. And weekends. And some early mornings. And on three out-of-town trips. Basically working ALL THE TIME. It was exhausting, but I kept telling myself, if God has brought me this work, then he will bless it.

And bless it, he did.


Passion, taking a selfie with my phone

The social media gig ended with a trip to St. Louis this past weekend to live tweet/instagram/facebook the SBC Pastors’ Conference, an event that featured more than 5,000 pastors, plus their guests and church members (I’ve heard estimates of 10,000-12,000 attendees). I got to hang out backstage with the speakers. And Passion Band (they were SO nice… like, SO nice). And I got to sit in a state-of-the-art mobile production trailer and work with some of my favorite friends from our church. It was kind of like sitting in a space ship TV studio. I still have no idea what everybody else was doing in there, but they sounded REALLY smart.


Top: A view from backstage; Bottom left: Me, after working 33 hours in 2 days; Bottom right: Our state-of-the-art media truck

The whole time I kept thinking to myself… here I am, the girl who didn’t grow up Baptist… the girl who hasn’t gone to seminary… the girl who wanted to be a stay-at-home mama…  here I am, the mouthpiece for the entire Southern Baptist Convention.


Left: A selfie with Pastor John Meador and one of our main speakers Derwin Gray, former NFL Player and now Senior Pastor at Transformation Church; Right: Me, totally exhausted and happy at the end of the conference

God uses the least of these to complete his mission. His plans are so much more interesting than our plans. And he cares about the details – like providing for us financially… getting me out of my comfort zone… using my gifts to further his kingdom.

Now I’m back. I’m so excited to have my free time again. Time to write. Time to sew. Time to rest my brain. Oh, how this mind of mine needs to rest.

But man, it was such a fun adventure while it lasted.

Holiday Weekend Recap

This last weekend was just so… wonderful. It was quiet and relaxing and fun. Mr. Right, Baby Girl, and I got to spend some quality time together, doing some FUN things around the house. It was so refreshing and peaceful and I want to do it again and again.



On Friday night we hosted a Fourth of July party for our Sunday School class and our neighbors. We had hoped it would be a way to get to know some of our neighbors better, but, well… nobody from the neighborhood showed up. We had fun anyway – I mean, how could you not have fun with a picnic, gallons of sweet tea and lemonade, ice cream, and FIREWORKS. That’s a recipe for the best night ever, if you ask me.

(For the record… Wrenn LOVED the fireworks. For about five minutes, and then she was on to the next thing… but those first few minutes, she was mesmerized. I loved it.)

Mr. Right, in typical party-planning over-achieving fashion, built an 8-foot photo booth. It will now live forevermore in our garage, and you can expect to see it make an appearance at every party for the rest of our lives. Everybody should own a photo booth.

Oh, and I made peach cobbler. You know it’s a national holiday if I get the urge to bake.


Saturday Wrenn and I hung out at the pool with my parents (weekends are workdays for my realtor husband), then we ventured out with Mr. Right to Trinity Groves in Dallas to eat the greatest gourmet hotdogs in the history of the universe. I ate one with pimento cheese (weird), bacon, and gouda, with a homemade bun dipped in maple syrup. It was pure awesomeness. I’m pretty sure it made my calorie-tracking app explode.

Sunday, after church, Wrenn and I bummed around the house and took marathon naps while Mr. Right worked, then we capped off the night with some movie watching and baby cuddles.

Can I have a do-over on this weekend? Or, rather, a do-again?


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Starbucks & Stilettos

If I had known I was going to spend my day running through the hospital, I would have worn my Ugly Friday flats instead of my stiletto tall boots. Luckily, tucked away in those stilettos were some orthopedic shoe inserts!

In the midst of playing hostess to a group of community VIPs who stopped by for SEVEN hours worth of tours and presentations, the mayor called to say that one of the network news stations was coming to do a story with us… in five minutes. Such good news, but terrible timing. So I sent my ducklings off on an impromptu tour and scrambled to find a primo interview spot for my major market reporter. We nailed the interview, then I flitted over to surgery to give a tour. After all, who is more qualified to give a surgery tour than the chick who has seen THREE WHOLE surgeries in her lifetime? Besides, I’ve watched more than 100 episodes of Grey’s Anatomy, which helps me fill in the blanks.

I just enjoyed watching our story on the 6:00 news, and now I sit here on baby watch, as my best friend Tiff waits patiently for her little superstar to arrive.

It’s a good thing I had a gallon of Starbucks this morning.

Ketchup (I mean Catchup)

Life has been flying by at warp speed, and I have barely had enough time to sleep, much less write. Now it’s a holiday weekend and I am looking forward to three days of peace, with no major plans, no commitments, and no worries. I can’t wait!

Today I’m buying my new patio set for my newly built patio, and it kind of feels like Christmas! Shopping for furniture is one of my great joys in life, and this new patio set has been so thoroughly researched that I don’t think there’s a single set in the DFW area that I haven’t sat in. Today I have it narrowed down to a larger set from Wal-Mart or a small one from Home Depot. I just need to measure one more time, and then I’ll make the buy.

I have made another major change in my life this month. I began a relationship with a new man, and I think this relationship could be long-lasting. He makes me happier than I ever dreamed he could–I have wondered for some time what it would be like to have this person in my life, but had some hesitations. Then finally one day I decided to go for it, and I have never regretted it.

He’s my yardboy. Yes, I will not have to mow my lawn ever again! I didn’t think I wanted to part with that $30 a week, but I must say that it’s the best $30 I spend. It’s well worth packing my lunch a few extra days. I’m extremely allergic to grass, and each time I mow, my eyes swell up, my skin gets irritated, and I can’t breathe for a week. And then it’s time to mow again! But now, thanks to Aaron the yardboy, I can spend my Saturday mornings doing other things. Thank you, my friend! You have changed my life!

My other news includes:
1. Sister Sarah and I finally booked our trip to New York for this summer! After watching the airline prices skyrocket over the past few weeks, they finally dropped and we got a great deal. We also got tickets to a Broadway show. I can’t wait!

2. My roses have finally started blooming again! I didn’t kill them!

3. I bought an industrial-strength waffle-maker. The kind that makes those enormous waffles, the kind they had in my dorm at Baylor. I think I may love it even more than the yardboy. I don’t know–maybe it’s a tie. We’ve been eating a lot of waffles at my house these past few weeks.

4. I’m going camping next weekend. I’m a little worried that it may be a million degrees, but I guess we can always just sit in the lake if we get hot. I love to camp, as long as it’s for short periods of time (this time, two nights) and as long as I’m close enough to civilization to be able to run to get a Sonic drink if I get a craving. I think our trip will meet all my specifications. Which reminds me–I need to go find a swimsuit in case we do go lake sitting.

I’m off to enjoy my Memorial Day weekend! I hope you enjoy yours!

The storm rolling in

I love, LOVE my new patio. Tonight after I got home from school and ate my late dinner, I took my Bible and sat out on the back porch to prepare my Sunday School lesson for this week. We’re expecting a big storm tonight, and I’ve been listening to the wind howl and watching it make my decorative twinkle lights dance as they hang from the roof. We’ve been bracing for this storm all day… the weatherman promised a doozie, and I was worried I wouldn’t make it home before it hit. But now I’m safe at home, and as long as it doesn’t blow my house away, the sound of the rain will probably help me sleep. That is, if I don’t fall asleep right here in my chair… it’s so peaceful.

That white stuff falling from the sky

Today was pretty boring… I took the day off of work and wrote a research paper ALL DAY. Bleh. On my list of things I want to do on any given day, sitting at my computer analyzing articles on weight loss surgery and the accuracy of advertising and Web sites is not very high on my list.

But then it snowed, and everything changed. It’s so beautiful, it almost makes up for an otherwise dreary day.


“So the Lord gave Israel all the land he had sworn to give their forefathers, and they took possession of it and settled there… Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; everyone was fulfilled.” (Joshua 21: 43, 45)

How great is that? God delivered on every single one of his promises to his people (the Israelites). I’m sure when they were wandering in the desert for 40 years, or when Joshua was leading his people into all of those different battles (it seems like everybody and their dog had to be defeated before they got the promised land), or when they were being chased by Pharoah’s men through the Red Sea, that God’s promises must have looked pretty far-fetched. I mean, God couldn’t possibly deliver on every single one, right? It was just too hard. There were too many limitations. God only had so much to work with.

Oh yeah, but he did. Crazy, huh.

So when I try to put my God into that little box, and try to characterize him with all of my limitations, and lack of imagination, and lack of perspective, it helps to see that verse. Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; everyone was fulfilled. Every single time. No matter how unreachable, how improbable.

So what does that mean for you?

I feel like an underachiever

I have some really cool friends. Many have accomplished some awesome things (successful lawyers, mascots, tv personalities, corporate bigwigs, even a spy), and today I found out another one of my friends has overshadowed my accomplishments.

My friend Ron White went to Afghanistan as a reservist for a year and just sent me a link to his photos. Normally he’s just a nationally recognized memory expert who speaks all over the United States (I met him at my first job, and was even given a shout-out on the acknowledgment page in one of his books for my “grammar consulting”). I don’t think I would offend him if I said he’s just an average joe who set out to do something heroic in support of his country. Way to go Ron, I’m proud of you.

As for something much less heroic, I’m going to be on the radio tomorrow morning to promote the Cowtown Marathon, an organization that I help out with. It should be fun, since I’ve never been to a radio station before (although I have been on Kidd Kraddick in the Morning, a midnight trucker show on 820 a.m. and Rush Limbaugh… but all of those are because I’m a big dork who used to call into radio shows). Hopefully I won’t make a huge goober of myself. I wasn’t that nervous (mostly because this isn’t the most popular station in town or anything) until I started thinking about how DJ’s like to make fun of guests if they say something stupid. I could just imagine my flubbed speech getting played over and over as a teaser while everybody laughs. AT me. Oh my, I’m getting nervous just thinking about it!

Is it wrong that I was tempted to go buy a new outfit for my big radio interview?

Perfect Sunday

Today was just perfect. It was one of those lazy Sundays that involved the little things that I enjoy so much. Nothing exceptional, but simple and comfortable and happy.

After church, I grabbed some Mexican food with friends, then came home for a nap. Then I took the Wonder Schnoodle on a walk around my neighborhood, enjoying the sunshine that has seemed so elusive all week. I love roaming my neighborhood, checking out the new houses and analyzing everybody’s landscaping decisions (I have so much to learn, so I love to see what everybody else is doing). The fun thing about my neighborhood is that they’re constantly building new houses, so the view changes weekly. Every once in awhile I’ll sneak into a new house to see what features they have and compare them to what I did in my house. Sometimes Harley goes with me… if these homeowners only knew that the Wonder Schnoodle has walked all over their home, they might not be very happy with me. Oh well. Sometimes you have to be a rebel.

After the walk, I did a few chores in my yard, chatted with my neighbor Roy and then came in to catch up on homework. It didn’t take very long, so now I have the whole evening to do whatever I want. It’s the perfect way to start out my week.

These are pretty good

Here’s my goal for this week (okay, two goals and an exclamation):

Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.
1 Peter 3:15

Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.
Philippians 1:27

And I pray that you… may have power… to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge–that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Ephesians 3:18-19

(this third one is one of my very favorites)