Somebody pulled my tail!

1901343_10153822610720184_1947888787_nLions and Tigers and B’B’B’B’B’B’B’B’..Bears…Oh my. The entire cast put all they had into this show and it was SUCH a huge delight to watch. It was indeed a most entertaining first ever musical in our brand new middle school theater. What a perfect musical to pick in honor of 75 years for The Wizard of Oz and by golly did our middle school actors do it well. The set was done complete with a rolling house for the tornado scene. The wicked witch and her jitterbugs were quite the sight. Her proclamation of “I’ll get you my pretty – and your little dog too!!” couldn’t have been more spot on perfect…though there were some surprises down the yellow-brick road. I don’t think she expected the switch from confetti to water for the “I’M Melting…MELTING!!” scene on closing night…1508577_10152301596995850_794435118_nThe Scarecrow brought forth a charm to the stage like no other, the Tin Man was full of wit, and the Lion had the audience rolling in laughter the entire performance. The crows worked in sing-song unison to bring the forest to life…”caw, caw…”1779054_10153822610655184_1491069569_nand how about those apple trees! “How would you like to have someone picking stuff off you!”1939620_10153818927660184_1674122819_n…not in this forest! The entire cast hit the target so well, I couldn’t possibly successfully mention every detail.

There’s always plenty of fun to be had off stage too – especially with this group…1974977_10153822611705184_2094860952_nof course the parents also enjoy a little fun when there’s fun to be had…1978727_10153815513935184_523302674_nAll silliness aside, the entire cast was completely amazing. They all got into their characters so well it was hard to remember you weren’t really truly in the land of Oz…1625535_10201643077509761_1957370861_nThis musical also marked a big milestone for Giggles. This was the very last musical she would participate in as a middle school actress. She has grown to love the directors dearly over the last three years of middle school and though there’s no place like home…1922079_10153818926375184_1391539500_n…it’s hard to leave the place you do call “home” most of the day when you have developed such inspiring relationships with the leaders, directors and teachers you work with day in and day out. She will sincerely miss them and I cannot ever thank teachers and leaders that invest so much of themselves into our youth enough. I’m certain they received more heartfelt hugs on closing night than they have in their entire lives…and each one was completely earned and deserved.1656387_10153822611430184_1962304683_n

I live in an elevator!

Our drama department has once again put on another outstanding performance. The characters were portrayed spot on. The stage was set to perfection, every laugh was rightfully earned and the music and dancing were completely incredible…1780856_10153801096480184_1810550210_nIt is a true joy to watch the personalities and talents of our youth enter into their characters while on stage. They put all they are and all they have to give into every show and it’s always a pleasure to see as their shows come to life on stage. Whether they are stuck in elevators…1932359_10153801095860184_2061459413_n or crying at weddings…1948018_10153801110760184_383140151_n…they are doing it with true passion, with all they are, and all they want to be. Their director cultivates and inspires this passion into our teens and has a high regard for consistency in his shows. With the assistance of a great group of leaders and parents, he pulls the best qualities and talents from each of the teens and somehow whips it all together into an amazing production time and time again. The greatest part is everyone loves every minute of it no matter how hard the work is. This love of creating an incredible theatrical production shines through every time. They all follow their hearts which beat to a very creative rhythm of life…1779905_10153794846725184_1026517163_n Each of them enjoy creating masterpieces for the entire community to see and it’s with a “fickle finger of fate” they become a true theatrical family with each and every show…1780709_10153791321430184_640010475_n

~ Snow Day!! ~

Everyone loves a snow day. Most kids look forward to them every year. (With mine, it depends on the day and what events they “would have had” that day)

We recently had our second snow day of the year. I rejoiced in the news knowing this would now be my third day off in this entire month. Sleeping in? Yes please. All alarms were immediately dismantled.

I rolled out of bed late-mid-morning to this delightful sight… IMG_6911 It’s only delightful because I have no need or intention of stepping outdoors at any given point in this day.

First things first – the cute little Beagle needs a bath… 10180_10153669135950184_1025516103_n I am positive she doesn’t love snow days as much as we do.

The house needs to be fed at some point in the day. I see no reason why we shouldn’t bake home-made brownies with bacon gravy & biscuits on the side…IMG_6909

After all the baking was done and a small part of the house was put right side up, I peeked outside to see the streets were clearing. This means our snow day is ending and we’ll be hitting the books again… re-engaging alarms… (sigh) IMG_6920

One foot in front of the other…

I’ve been in hibernation mode. You know, that time of year when you really don’t feel like yourself and would really rather sleep until spring comes again? I know I cannot be the only one. It’s true, I crave the sun like a growing teen craves milk. Pretty sure that’s old news and everyone who is honest has to admit they are tired of talking about the weather. It’s wet, it’s cold, it’s hot, (I wish), it’s not, blah blah…. old news different day. Right?

People. They all want reality and for others to be real with them, but are often afraid to be real themselves. Me included friends. The thing about hibernation mode is it’s often quiet since no one really speaks and you can think and ponder many things. Take the people I tend to favor for instance. My favorite families to deal with are those that include your not so normal (whatever normal is), happy people who really just love life for what it is. Why? They are honest and real. They are who they are and I truly admire them. I love talking with people who are honest about their struggles and really find I don’t end up talking much. They are usually so open and honest that they just tell their stories and I just listen. I am happy to hear their voices and be there to do just that. I accept them for who they are and have no judgment or thought towards anything close to it. I look forward to seeing the people who have no reason or excuse other than “this week really just sucks and I am having a hard time getting it back together” or the famous “we’re leaving early to go pick strawberries” – what’s not to love about real honesty? There it is. I tend to love the “needy” trouble makers. I veer towards them and simply listen to their sincere, emotionally charged, five-year old stories. So I may get “sucked in” or “taken for a ride”. Be what it may, most of the people I listen to daily are under six years old and their feelings, emotions and stories matter to them. Sometimes all they need is a pat on the shoulder and a hug on their way out the door. The least I can do is let them know they matter in this crazy world full of life.

I tend to get in trouble for being too soft-hearted. This leads me to think I really haven’t found my place. I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up. Where does a girl who loves Dolphins, Dogs, Disney movies, Disney Channel and Nickelodeon fit? Where does a girl who laughs at shows like “Sam and Cat” go? Where does a girl who truly enjoys simplicity, pure joy and honesty belong? I have yet to know. I’m still trying to figure it out.

I do know that I have several things on my so-called “bucket list” that I have yet to accomplish (it’s all good – there’s still time) There’s a few people I want to see in real life – as in not on television – in my time here on earth. Anyone who knows me at all knows these include people such as Ariana Grande, Selena Gomez, Miley Cyrus and Katy Perry…well guess what! My day turned right side up today!! I may not know what I’m doing with my life or where I really fit but I do know that a dear sweet young lady I adore who currently goes by the name of Katy Perry is coming to town!!! She’s on my list of people I’d love to meet some day so the very least I can do is attend her show if she’s going to be around. Guess what else? She is the daughter of a pastor but more importantly the daughter of Jesus the King. He too loves and accepts her just as she is and where she is. By the grace of God she’s being herself, finding herself and figuring things out as she goes. She’s honest and extraordinarily talented. She’s finding her place in the world and doing it quite well. I am pretty sure I almost cried in joy when I saw the news. The squeal of excitement was probably from the neighbors (maybe) and the chair that did a double flip backwards when I may or may not have leaped for joy – - well – - as far as I know, it appears to be okay…

When the dust settles

Once the gluttonous feasting of that day of the year set aside for doing just that has ended, what do you do besides continue to graze on those impeccable leftovers? I don’t know what everyone else does, but I know we had a typical day. Once we tied on our stretchy pants we headed out the door (not really, we have a tad more fashion sense than that), we attempted to look for glasses for Sheldon who can’t seem to see our huge projector screen clearly…IMG_6448It’s a really huge TV that covers the wall and the complaint is it’s blurry. Since we are not getting a bigger projector screen, he’s conceded that maybe glasses may be in order. He does need to see the zombies to attack them after all. No luck in the glasses department…maybe contacts? I suppose we’ll see what next weekend brings.

We hopped on over to the photo place where Giggles took part in a super fun photo shoot. She has an audition tomorrow that requires a head-shot. This obviously meant a mandatory photo shoot was completely necessary. We may have had a wee bit of too much fun, but coming from a family (or mom) who loves photos, how would you NOT have fun with it?

We had to create a resume for her and paste it to the back of her photograph. Easy enough. Except I found out really quickly that I flunked cutting class in Kindergarten. Giggles happily took over to show me how it’s done…IMG_6446Yes, safety scissors – we still own them and use them. Safety first!! (especially if you knew me at all)

Ta da! Glad SHE passed Kindergarten…I guess I’ll be going back…IMG_6447

Mr. R is absent this evening and Giggles and her friends needed a few of his cows for a certain video production they did for social studies class. (Isn’t homework fun now days?) They rocked it I have to say. I really hope they get an “A”. She needed his cow statues for decor since the project was about the state of North Dakota and everyone knows North Dakota is all about the cows. She secretly packed them in a bag and snuck out the door (yes, I helped) and decorated their staging to their heart’s galore. We kept them hidden away just so, he didn’t seem to notice so we’re sure he didn’t know.

In his absence this evening, we figured the time was just right. Time to place them all back where they were supposed to be. I looked at Giggles quizzically wondering how she’d remember where they all belonged. She replied easily with a shrug “we’ll just put them back in their shapes – it’s easy to see their shapes in the dust.” I couldn’t help but laugh because her tale is so true. We carefully placed each cow in its rightful spot following the dust lines just so. We got to the end of the herd and I’m afraid we got confused along the way. In the mix of the laughter, we didn’t seem get them all just right. We plopped them down and figured enough was done, he probably won’t notice anyways. We laughed the whole way through as our story grew and grew.

I learned a lot about cows and chickens. I now know what a chicken looks like (it seems I didn’t know before). I also learned that I REALLY need to dust a whole lot more. Then again, if I leave it, we’ll have dust lines to follow for the next school project… IMG_6443

Dreams coming true day by day…

943366_10153365244270184_2002985263_n[1]“When you wish upon a star, it makes no difference who you are. Anything your heart desires, will come to you.” I’ve always dreamt of being a princess and working for Disney. I delighted in doing at least half of that for the little trick or treaters who stopped by this year. I am confident the wee ones loved being greeted by Belle as much as I loved being Belle. It’s the little things that hold me through…

We happened upon an old item recently thanks to a dear friend who connects with the right people… IMG_6151 It seems teens of “now” days are just as interested in antique objects that still work as they are in video games and the internet…at least for a little while…1426181_10151692513407093_625239728_n[1] Giggles even did her homework with it this week… IMG_6359Giggles…she is so gifted in the gift of giggles…580557_1385300545041706_1610329022_n[1] When I feel the creeping of the doomsey feelings of winter setting in, all I have to do is look at her or scroll through old snapshots of her being her fun self and I cannot help but giggle…0727131737aShe had an amazing time with her friends at their recent play – we are a family who loves theater after all. It’s not so much the plays themselves (though they are typically rather enjoyable) as much as the time they have with their friends doing something they love so much together…1466124_10153411248250184_1813758102_n[2]Speaking of fun, Mr. R and I may have had a little more fun than most while helping out family in one of their most recent wedding receptions…selfies…”entertainment of thy selves”… 1375146_10153343270520184_1508671119_n[1]When one play ends, the other is just beginning. That’s what happens when you have both kids loving theater and living their dreams. We also have tryouts for the next musical currently in process – they go right from one to the next you know. We won’t know her part until next week but we do know the play. All I can say is “I’ll get you my pretty…and your little dog too…” Regardless of their parts, I know it will once again be an extraordinarily fun event.

Sheldon is in his last weekend of their current production which has been a REALLY great and fun show for all to see. As I’ve said before so many times, there are SO many extremely talented teens and I will never cease to boast about how amazing each one of them are in all they do. It is always such a wonderful pleasure to witness our kids and their friends doing what they love and working so hard every day to make all their dreams come true…1401844_10153468119360184_1422392675_o[1]“If your heart is in your dream, no request is too extreme. When you wish upon a star as dreamers do…”

When…

biblia2When… when does God move? When do the Angels sing? When does peace come? When does God move in your life?

Fear encompasses the world. Fear comes from the devil in case you were wondering or had any doubts. The Bible speaks repeatedly of fear and that we should have none. Look it up and see for yourself if you don’t believe it’s true.

When fear tries to enter your life, stop. Stop all thoughts and doubts. Stop all fear from entering. Set yourself still and seek the Lord.

2 Chronicles 2:4-20 says Jehoshaphat prayed. We went to GOD for help. He cried out and looked to God for direction. Everyone in Judah was there. The Children, wives, sons – everyone. They were all attentive to God. The held fast to God and His word. They sought after the Lord.

Sometimes the person you’d like to call in a crisis is not the person you should call. When crisis situations occur, you should run to people strong in the Lord, not to people who make you “feel” good. Jesus brings peace. the perfect picture of peace is Jesus sleeping on a pillow in the boat in the midst of the storm. No need for worry or fear, God has it under control. Jesus brings that exact peace into our lives if we allow Him to. We should fix our gaze upon Jesus. Choose where your eyes are going to be.

Ephesians 13-18 says to be prepared. We’re up against far more than we can handle on our own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.

Your mind can keep going and going. The Bible says to just stand – when everything else looks bleak, stand on Jesus. Do not be afraid. Stand still, spiritually stand on all that Jesus is and says. When you have exhausted every other possibility, keep standing and see the salvation of the Lord. Faith is both believing and speaking.

Our souls tend to get distracted by all the things around us instead of simply trusting in God and all he says and does. Watch and see God work. The devil knows which thoughts to put in your mind. Don’t let him. The Lord will fight for you and will give you peace.

2 Chronicles 20:14-17 says we are not to be afraid. This is God’s war, not yours. You don’t have to lift a hand in the battle, but simply need to stand firm and watch God’s saving work for you take shape. Don’t be afraid and do not waver. March boldly for God is with you.

The entire time a crisis comes, God is with you and waving trying to get you to look to Him. We are not to be discouraged or dismayed. Whenever you get dismayed, it’s often when you are not in the Word enough. There is no sunshine on doom. Set yourself to seek God. Hear His voice and wait for the plan. He’ll give you the plan of action. Stand and see the salvation of God.

How many people settle for something they can live with. How many people make a deal with the devil, compromise, and don’t receive the full extent of what God has for them. Sometimes it’s difficult to take a position against anyone. Going all out for victory will make you stand out. You’ll make some people happy and some angry. It’s okay to be against something in your life. Predetermine and set yourselves to seek God and victory and be unwilling to compromise. Be unwilling to take second place.

Are you okay with just being okay? Is good enough good enough? Don’t write a treat with the devil. It’s hard to mean business with God when you make deals with the devil. Don’t be content with being number two when God made you number one. You deserve to be number one because of Jesus and all he gave for you. If the devil can keep you quiet, he can keep victory far from you.

Address every voice that speaks to you. Every compromise should be addressed. Jesus took all for you. Don’t be afraid or dismayed. The Lord is always with you. He’s with you for victory. He’s not with you to hold your hand through misery. It’s okay to be against principalities and powers. If you don’t know what you’re for, you won’t know what you’re against.

Stand still and let God do his work. Stand up and praise God and make it loud and high. Don’t wander around and be nice to stupid things. You will be successful if you believe. If you doubt the word of God, you will be a failure and will fail. Believing and receiving are one and the same. Faith is not hoping or wondering, it believes and takes. Faith knows what side it’s on and is aggressive. It is sure and knows exactly what belongs to it and demands it immediately.

2 Chronicles 21-22 says to believe firmly in God and your lives will be firm. Tonight Pastor Ryan explained how Jehoshaphat appointed a choir for God. They dressed in robes and marched in FRONT of the army when going to war. They were not trained in battle. It was faith in battle. Victory always has a song. Immediately WHEN they began to sing and praise, God sent ambushes out for them. NOT before or after, but WHEN they sang and praised.

God moves when we sing and cry out in praise to Him. The moment they gave voice to victory and the moment they gave voice to God, God moved. 2 Chronicles 20:24 says God moved until EVERY enemy was dead. That’s how God fights a battle.

There’s a forward movement to our faith. When you’re going through hell, don’t stop. Keep moving forward with God. When David was fighting Goliath, he ran towards Goliath. Crisis will come. Affliction will come. We don’t have to lose our peace. God has peace and rest for us no matter what is going on around us. We have a right to peace.

When… when does God move? When do the Angels sing? When does peace come? When does God move in your life?
The moment we sing and give voice to God. The moment we cry out to God in Victory. The moment we stand firm and let God do His work. When we let go and let God and have faith, God moves and declares the Victory.