Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Oh, give me a home

It has taken me a month to realize it, but we're not in the big city. When we were moving up here it seemed to us that a DC suburb would be "big city" like. But after a month of being here, I feel more like we live in the country. I love the landscape and the fact that there are NO billboards anywhere, including the interstate. And I love all the big parks and local farms, trees and wildlife (lots of dead ones too) everywhere. But I sure do miss my super Targets and, I can't believe I'm saying this, but I miss super Wal-Mart too :o) I heard its a 30 minute drive to the closest one. I enjoy a good deal, and the Money Saving Mom blog fills me in on all I'm now missing at Target and Wal-Mart. A small price to pay for being where God wants us :o)

I was just entering my grocery receipts and checking my monthly budget to see how I'm doing in this supposedly more expensive area. I'm more below our Orlando budget than I ever was when we lived there! Praise God! I think the well stocked pantry helped a lot, but I was fully expecting to at least come in around my normal $20 over. I am so grateful to God for giving us a home here despite a lack of superstores with great deals, and how well He provides everything we need when we need it!

Monday, October 27, 2008

But even if He does not

Keith and I have been reading Daniel the last couple nights. I was freshly encouraged by the example of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. They refused to bow to the golden image King Nebuchadnezzar had set up, and in his rage the king threatened to throw them into the fiery furnace if they would not bow. They responded with great courage and faith, saying:
"O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up." (Daniel 3:16-18)

And while God did save these faithful saints from the blazes of the furnace that even killed the soldiers that threw the men in, they could not have expected that they would walk out of the flames without even smelling like smoke. It's not everyday God intervenes in such a miraculous way. These men were ready to die rather than sin against the God of heaven! Might we all be inspired by the example of those who face much graver circumstances than we do, and choose death to self rather than sinning against God.

Monday, October 20, 2008

The PC in DC

Saturday we had the opportunity to go down to DC with all the PC families and staff and our very own tour guide--a very, very generous man from Covenant Life who seems to know everything about history :o) He did an incredible job leading us through the monuments and memorials, giving us lots of interesting facts about them and the history behind them. It was also a great time to get to know everybody. We had a wonderful time!!

Keith and I thought it would be a bit much to ask Isaac and Samy to sit the stroller for so long, so we left them with a lady I met at Wal-Mart, seriously :o) Her son had on a Covenant Life shirt, so I introduced myself and we exchanged numbers. She called me in the midst of my sitter search, and when I asked her for suggestions, she graciously volunteered. The kids had such a good time with her kids that they didn't want to leave :o)
And I included pictures of the train in "Olde Town Gaithersburg" that we found on Sunday.

Pics of our house

Yes, yes, it's been a long time coming but I finally took some pictures of our new home. We had our first dinner guest last week so I was motivated to clean :o) Melissa, who is Jeff's administrative assistant, came over for dinner and a round of Bohnanza (a card game), and an attempt to watch The Office (our antenna didn't cooperate despite our best efforts). We had a wonderful time with her, as did the kids. Isaac asked if she would be here in the morning, it was sweet :o) though he couldn't remember her name!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Hello PC Wives!

Since Jeannie was so kind to send out everyone's blogs and I thought you gals might take a look at mine, I wanted to take the opportunity to tell you how excited I am to get to know you ladies! And I am even more excited to see what our Lord has in store for you this year and in the years to come! May our Great Savior fill you to overflowing again and again throughout this special season in the PC!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Pumpkin patch kids

Saturday after lunch we headed to Butler's Orchard--a farm just down the road that has different crops throughout the year, but our excursion this time was for a pumpkin. The kids had lots of fun walking through the pumpkin patch--Isaac liked finding pumpkins, Samy liked pulling the leaves off the plants. We got some fun pictures!

Today I had the special treat of going to a baby shower for my dear friend from college, Laura. She was one of my bridesmaids and I was one of hers and she and her husband Joel have been dear friends to us for years! God has been kind to occasionally cross our paths through the years, and I am so excited now to live less than an hour away from them! So I included a picture of Laura, Baby T, and me. She's so cute pregnant!

The PC

For those who don't know much about Sovereign Grace Ministries or what in the world the "Pastors College" is that Keith is now serving at, here is a link to some info on it:

Saturday, October 11, 2008

These are a few of my favorite things

We are certainly enjoying our new home--quite a nice change from our last one! And surprisingly one of our very favorite parts is having carpet in the family room again. Keith and the kids had so missed being able to wrestle around on the floor (our last home had tile), so now there is frequently a big tickle fight on the floor after dinner.

Our kitchen, dining room, living room, hallway and family room form a loop and our kids have made it their track. If they're not being tickled than they are running! It is so funny to watch them entertain themselves by just running around and around the loop, laughing the whole time. I'm glad they have so much energy :o)

I haven't had my camera out much since we moved--just been busy unpacking and trying to get back into a routine and meet some new people. But I will take pictures of the house very soon! Here is one of the pond that is down the hill in front of our house, which is really pretty with big weeping willows by it. Isaac and Samy like throwing rocks in it, and Isaac likes exploring the "100 acre woods" next to it (my mom gave it that name and it stuck).

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Edisto Island 2008

Ok, so I didn't get the pictures up this weekend, but it's only Wednesday :o)
Here are some pictures from our week long "pit stop" in South Carolina for the Pfaller family beach trip.
We celebrated Mom and Dad's 60th birthdays by doing a skit entitled "When you were my age." Each of us came out in appropriate attire from the year Mom and Dad were our age and presented a few facts of the year as well as personal family humor only we would understand :o) Since the Lindsey family couldn't join us this year they sent a video that was quite hilarious as we watched their second oldest daughter, Hannah portray a 12 year old Michelle perfectly!
But even funnier than their video was seeing my brother Mark in his wife's shorts and my shirt! Oh, I almost wet my pants when I saw him, and the scary thing is my Dad wore very similar clothes at that age! We ended our skit with the three littlest (Mika, Isaac and Samy) coming out with huge leaves for attire and Samy in her leopard print swimsuit and holding a sign that said, "When you were my age God created the earth!"
Sorry some of the pictures are blurry, the flash was off.

It was a wonderfully refreshing time after all the craziness of packing. Isaac and Mika were the best of buddies all week and Samy was frequently in Papaw's lap (which was a nice break from hanging on my leg!). We all had a wonderful time!

Friday, October 3, 2008

The Weltons are back online!

You may have been wondering if the Weltons had wandered right of the face of the earth on their way to Maryland it's been so long since I blogged, but we in fact were just without Internet :o) But I'm finally up and running again today and thought I'd give you a quick catch up on the last two weeks and hopefully pictures will follow sometime this weekend.

So we packed up in Sanford two weeks ago today with the help of our wonderful friends and home group and were on the road after a quick lunch. Saying goodbye didn't feel like goodbye since we were driving to the beach for a week before getting up to Maryland, it just felt like vacation with a U-Haul :o)

We had a great time with the Pfaller clan at the beach in South Carolina, though the cooler wet weather only allowed for about two days of playing on the beach. We had a blast playing games and of course all us girls went shopping.

Bright and early (actually it was still dark) Friday morning--5:40 AM to be precise--the Weltons and my parents headed for Maryland. According to mapquest, it was a 9 hour 35 minute trek, but mapquest obviously doesn't have small children and a U-Haul :o) we arrived at 5:15 PM with two very wound up kids and some stiff legs. [I just saw a chipmunk in our backyard! How cool is that!!] After a quick walk through with the realtor and a fabulous dinner brought over by Aaron and Crystal, our moving crew arrived and had us unloaded in less than an hour with all of the beds put together! There must have been 20 people here. We were welcomed with bags of groceries to stock our shelves from some friends from Knoxville who are at the PC and a bouquet of flowers from Matt and Siobhan Slack. Jeff (Keith's boss) and Julie Purswell came by with a big basket of goodies and more beautiful flowers to welcome us. Julie brought by some Krispy Kreme doughnuts Sunday evening, just after we finished our second delivered meal. Another family we don't know brought dinner on Tuesday, and another family brought by an apple pie Wednesday! I can't tell you how very welcomed we feel!! We are just overwhelmed at God's kindness to us in all that He has provided in getting us here and now that we are here! And I'm not finished telling you everything :o)
We went to Covenant Life Church Sunday morning for their first service at 9 (which is great b/c we're home in time for naps) and the kids greatly enjoyed class while we greatly enjoyed worshipping without them vying for our attention :o) Jeff Purswell taught and we both were very encouraged and convicted by the message. And they just finished painting the children's minstry hallways with beautiful murals of bible stories. It is really cool!!
And there have been so many little things that I just thank God for b/c He didn't have to give them to us (not that He had to give us any of this!), but He is so kind even in the smallest details! For instance, the kids bathroom is totally wallpapered with jungle animals which is fun and all but I thought sure I would have to buy yet another shower curtain to match something in there, but when I went to put the purple one I have up so my parents could use the shower, I noticed that most of the leaves in the wallpaper are the exact same shade of purple as my curtain! I know it might sound silly, but it was such a reminder to me of how God is caring for me even in the smallest details of my life.

Sorry for being so long, just one more thing for today...I got sick with a flu thing Wednesday afternoon (just a little 24 hour thing). But as I laid in bed with a fever, God brought to mind a word Darin Slack had given us about 5 years ago that has described our journey over the last 6 years to a tee. The Lord reminded me how very precisely He had worked out what He had spoken to us through Darin 5 years ago. It wasn't amazing that Darin had relayed this vision so well (though thank you Darin for being faithful to share it with us!)--no, what amazed me was how God knew the end from the beginning. How He had ordained our steps these last 5 years (well, really our whole lives) when it seemed like our prayers were hitting the ceiling. How tenderly He was caring for us when circumstantially it didn't seem like it. Us desiring to move to Atlanta and putting our house up for sale, us selling our house in this very rough market, then finding out about this job just weeks afterwards was no coincidence. Keith getting a seminary degree then getting a job he really didn't like was no stroke of bad luck. It was all the working of our Sovereign God!! We didn't understand it while we "wandered" about, but God was at work and still is, and I can't wait to see what He does next :o)
Love to all and we miss everyone!