Monday, December 1, 2008


A BOY!!!! Michael and I are very excited to think we will be holding a son in April! For the thousand comments I will receive about the name, yes, we have decided (and did long before kids were in the picture - as a youth minister and teacher we have a FEW name associations to filter through) Landon Elijah is his name. Landon because we both love it and it is Michael's granddad's name whom he never met but told to this day that he is like. Elijah because it means "The Lord is my God"

We are claiming and praying 1 Kings 17:24 over this little one already as his life verse,
"Then the woman said to Elijah,"Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the Lord from your mouth is the Truth."

We are very excited and still can't believe we are having a son!!! What a sweet blessing....

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

what do you think??

Monday is the big day for us. We will find out if we are going to have a son or a daughter. What do you think we will have? We can't wait to find out. I am reminded this week how thankful we both are that God has considered us for this honor of parenthood!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Dear Mr. Obama

"The day we lose our will to fight is the day we lose our freedom."

Click on the link below to hear it from the horse's mouth who has been there- praise the Lord for the men and women who fight and die for our FREEDOM that has never been free.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

BIG NEWS.....little post

We are excited! Little Jenkins will arrive in April! We just made the announcement last weekend and we are thrilled to say we are 13 weeks closer to meeting this little one!

More blog posts to come! I guess I have to be more consistant now :)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

something to check out

We have an unwritten rule in our house (made by me :) ) "No political talk after 10pm" Partly because I dream so vividly that whatever Michael and I discuss towards the end of the evening, usually makes its way into a dream.

Most of us are sick of the squabbles between the candidates at this point. Myself included. However, I watched a VERY good interview on YouTube yesterday. It was the Saddleback Civic Forum. If you have a minute - watch it. It is broken up into 5 parts. Rick Warren states at the beginning that each candidate will be asked the same questions in the same order. It was more of a relaxed and informal interview which I loved because you could seem to see their character a little clearer. A question may have been asked an you could see Obama cough, wiggle, or not be confident of his response. It was good to to hear the perspective from both sides equally and fairly.

I have since become in conversation with a friend on Facebook. She is an avid Obama supporter and I am clearly not. I do not trust that man. I am very excited about McCain's experience coupled with Palin's fiery convictions. After a long post on my message board, I responded to her praise of Obama and her disagreements on McCain. At the end of the day, God is on the throne, not McCain or Obama (THANK GOODNESS) but I wanted to post my response simply to hear any input you may have and if you haven't already, watch the Saddleback Civic Forum! I would love for you to post your comments.

My response to her email...

You are exactly right. We will not see eye to eye on this so it is better to agree that we will disagree. The good news is that at the end of the day McCain or Obama are NOT on the throne - God is (thank goodness) so whatever happens is not by chance. Bear with me as I know this is REALLY long.

I do understand your respect for Obama because his passion for the poor. From being in the school system for 3 years, teaching in the inner-city of Louisville and now at a low income school where we have 80% free reduced, I see a lot of poverty. I see children who come to school for the 3rd day in the same clothes, I see kids who beg to save their milk instead of drinking it at lunch so they have something that night at home, and I've seen kids who live in dumps with no electricity and no where enough space or safety in that neighborhood (one of my kids last year- I went to his house to get a field trip permission slip) Yet, just down the street there are beautiful neighborhoods with picket fences and lawns mowed. On the other hand, I have seen every way to work the system. For instance, a student we have this year is on free and reduced lunch (which means the government covers the deficit of $.30 a meal instead of $2.60) and yet the parent was outraged that the afterschool program was $50 a week. We are required to keep students anyways by law. The funny thing, the parent drives a new car, has a new cell phone, and according the student - has an HDTV at home so they don't like our classroom TVs. The sad thing is- this is SO MANY families that are being assisted. The issue is priorities, NOT poverty. On the other hand, I know a lady who is raising her 4 great grandsons and has made a way for herself. She has been promoted at the hospital due to her work ethic (not a degree) but bc she is making "too much money" her food stamps have been taken from her. This is a women who has sacrificed everything for her grandchildren because they are family. She also told me that she could foster them and cut a bigger check but she knows that is not right, so she will cut a smaller check to know no one can snatch her boys. This is a lady I greatly respect and the govt. is not working in her favor. I am convicted about this issue of poverty bc the reality is - it ISN'T and shouldn't be the govt job to aid those who make poor choices, we as the church need to step up and provide for these families. At school, there is a church that comes in every Friday and does just that. They package microwave meals and snacks for families in need so the children can eat over the weekend. We need to step up as the church in America, not the govt.

We have children in our schools systems, who are NOT legal citizens. By law, we are required to give all children an education. Not very securing to me that if a child doesn't have a social security number, the school system is to assign them a "pin" number instead. These are not just Hispanic illegals but from various countries. Your tax dollars are paying for this. Children of families who are here on "a free ride" while we are working 60 hour work weeks to make ends meet. There is something terribly wrong with this. Obviously this is not the result of one loophole but many.

When it comes to the war. Who does like it? Who does want to stay in this state of turmoil? I don't see many people raising their hands to this one. However, it grates on my nerves when the soldiers are referring to being "sent" or "forced" at such a young age. We do not draft men or women to serve our country. They willingly sign up to serve. A man that works with our youth at church has a wife, 2 kids, and adopting the 3rd, has been to Iraq serving with the Army for almost 2 years. He has been home about a year and a half and is about to head back out. Why? He sees the great relief we have been giving to the Afghani and Iraqi people. They have since the time we have been there been able to establish themselves and women and children run to our soldiers as they look to them as their own heroes. The pictures from there are unbelievable. Within the past two weeks, our military turned over complete security to Iraqi military of the Ambar Province of Iraq. Where was that in the news? I wish our news channels where more balanced on the good that is occuring there, not just the sad case of how many men we as Americans have lost. It is a new day in the media. We have lost a little over 4,000 men in this war over the course of 6 years. Although this is a sad loss, these men knew the cost of sacrifice. They knew the price they were willing to pay. What saddens me more, is how as a country we have FORGOTTEN the events of 9/11. Just the other day I was getting my hair cut by a lady who I discovered moved from NY because her apt was next to the towers and she had lost everything, including 11 family members and friends. I immediately told her how sorry I was that we had forgotten Sept. 11 as a nation. We lost over 3,000 people in one day from an unexpected event that sadly could have been prevented. Those people that were in the towers and on the planes and those family members are who we should remember to grieve for, not just for our soldiers. Are you aware that the media is not allowed to show the planes hitting the towers on national tv? why not? yes - it is devastating and no one wants to relive that day but what a reminder of the blatant evil we are up against and what we are being naive to.

I do not agree with Obama. I do not agree that his "change" is what we need. He can speak well. But a President that only speaks well is not appealing to me. I want a man of conviction. I value substance over style. Someone who is not seeking success in a career ladder but has "been there, done that" I heard someone say if you can't stand behind and support the President, stand in front and do his job. As for the Saddleback Forum, I don't care what "environment" he was in. It was apparent that on certain topics he was more concerned with others opinions of him than standing firm on an issue. Leaders are confident and lead regardless of their environment.

I have a MAJOR issue that he does not consider militant Islamic terrorist as evil. I also have a MAJOR issue that he is willing to negotiate with these terrorists. Within the last year, our soldiers have found floor plans of multiple schools in the US in places where Al-Qaeda had fled from. These men are willing to strap bombs to their own children and mentally handicap women in order to achieve a higher after life reward. THEY DO NOT CARE TO DIE. I am unsure if you have heard of "The Perfect Day" but it is the new plan of attack from Al Qaeda has threatened to the US. A similar strategy in Russia was successful a few years ago and our soldiers have found video footage (in these same hiding places) of "training tapes". This basically consists of causing some reason to evacuate a school building (fire alarm is what was used) When all children and teachers are outside they execution style kill innocent teachers and children. In addition, they have strapped bombs to their OWN children or themselves ( they are bus drivers who are hired illegals) and blow up multiple buses in the bus lane then attack the building. THIS IS REALITY. In Texas, buses have already reported missing. Scary. These people are patient. They are confident that the more that are killed the better rewarded they will be as they sadly misinterpret the Koran. On the same note, the Mullahs (religious leaders) as well as Iran's President, believe part of their role is to usher in the 12th Imam, which basically brings about their world domination. Therefore, negotiation is absurd especially when we know the potential of attack ahead.

Like I said before, we will agree to disagree. I believe that most of America's problems can and should be solved by America's people, whereas it seems you would argue that most of America's problems should be solved by America's government. Thanks for reading this, I know if was really long. Maybe this helps you see why I take the perspective I do.

Hope you have a good week!

Monday, September 1, 2008

a sweet summer ending

The last week of July Michael and I headed to Charleston, SC for a chance to sleep, eat great seafood, see some really neat historical sites, and just be with each other. Every summer for us is a normal person's work week times 20. No lie, we are at home about 20% of the summer. The rest is filled with camp for 2 weeks, mission trip usually for 10 days, bible studies and fellowships for the youth, and trying to squeeze family into the mix.

Every summer we usually go to the beach with my family but this year they went in May instead of July. Michael and I decided to head out for a week on our own since we hadn't done that since our honeymoon. We had a blast. What a sweet gift marriage is. Just living life with your best friend. We went to a friend's beach house for the day, the aquarium, the military muesuem, and many many other tourist places. We loved that we could walk everywhere and I ate crab legs 3 times :)

We heard before we got married Adrian Rogers always said, "Dialouge daily, date weekly, depart quarterly, and (we added) dream all the time" This week was a reminder that regardless of our schedules, our marriage and family are first. We are so blessed - this week was such a reminder of that.

The Lodge Alley Inn where we stayed

The beach. My favorite place......must I say more?

On the ferry boat out to Fort Sumter

Fort Sumter

It was POURING off and on at Fort Sumter so we took a
bike carriage ride back to the hotel. I don't think I would
ever want the summer job of being the bike driver.

The U.S.S Yorktown took us 4.5 hours to tour.
I kept referring to the "boat" to which Michael continued to correct me that it's a "ship"

Michael barely fit in some places

We ate dinner at Hymen's with dear friends, the Thomas', who were also in Charleston

A must see in Charleston. The military museum had artifacts from the war of 1812 to the present war in Iraq. You can't help but be overwhelmed by the sacrifice of all the men and women who have served and continue to serve our country for our freedom. Freedom is not free and this place was such a reminder of how thankful we should be to live in America.

The trees along the driveway to Boone Plantation

9 of the 22 original slave cabins remain on the Boone Plantation

It was a great, restful, memorable week!

Saturday, May 31, 2008

BIG POST.......little news

I started this "blog world" in January as one of my best friends Ashley convinced me I would love it. My immediate response was "Not until I have kids....I have nothing to really blog - I am never home" Well, 3 months later, my point is proven. My last post was in February. We don't have the most cooperative computer considering it is used for Michael's school, work, and church so getting a hold of it long enough to blog has been another challenge in and of itself. So for all you avid blog readers - I am sorry for the disappointment. It is my goal to do better but no promises until little ones arrive :)
Until then, I will fill you in on our life by this enormous post with very little news......

I just finished my first year of teaching Kindergarten. After teaching middle school, this was a breeze, enjoyable, memorable, and by far - a blessing. I consider each of my students entrusted to me for a purpose - to love on them and openly talk about God's love for them and His creation. It has been an honor to teach under a principal who told me in his interview "I consider it my personal responsiblity that every child who walks through these doors knows about Christ - that is why I am very intentional about who I hire here." When he asked me what grade I would prefer I told him I would happily scrub toliets under his leadership. He is the perfect example of a godly, unapoligectic man doing a secualar job the way Christians should. It brings a whole new light of ministry and the public school. I wonder what the system would be like if we had more strong, growing Christian, conservative men lead and back down to no one but God. We have definately grown passive as a Christian culture.

The other day one I asked my children what they needed to do if they couldn't spell a word. They all echoed "sound it out!!" I said "What do you do if you get stuck? Do you just quit?" (answer I was looking for was "No, ask a friend") One of my little boys, Morgan, yelled out "You can ask Jesus to help you!!" I was thrilled that if some of my children can't walk away from my room knowing all 78 sight words but on their own one little one knew Jesus would help him no matter what - something we talk about often. It has been one week since school has been out......I really miss my little ones. What a joy it is to wake up excited to go to work - even until the very end. Even though I will have a new group in 2 months, this group will always have a deep impression on my heart....

Our field trip to the Gallatin Police Dept.

My attempt at a picture for our Kindergarten diplomas. Notice the tounge sticking out, hand signs, mad faces, and looking around.....welcome to the world of Kindergarten!! :)

Michael is going on his 3rd year of youth ministry at Long Hollow Gallatin this summer. What a blessing and honor it has been to do ministry together and watch so many families be changed for the better. We have grown from a youth ministry of 8 to 60 in the last 3 years and have in some ways, been parents to many of our teenagers. We love them all. It has been so neat to watch Michael grow as a youth pastor. I still find myself looking at him thinking, "I got to marry HIM??!" He is excellent at what he does. He is patient, detailed, funny, consistant, and firm. It really is an honor to stand beside him as his wife.

Michael with two of our favs - Coy and Hall

My Connect Group girls

The whole crew on a Sunday - larger than a photo :)

We tell Hall and Ronald that they are our kids. We feed them,
pick them up, discipline them and LOVE them. Might as well be!!

Over Spring Break we took several of our youth to Gulfport, MS to help with Hurricane Katrina relief. It is amazing how much work has been accomplished down there from the church in general. Many families are still in FEMA trailers but as of July they are taking those trailers away due to the chemicals they are releasing and causing a lot of people there to be sick. We did various projects such as hang drywall, paint a porch, yardwork, mud drywall etc. It is always fun to me to watch teenagers get out of their comfort zone and be fulfilled and satisfied serving God in the oddest ways. Many times what they would NEVER do at home.
Krista, Ethan, Cameron, and Hall laying a bamboo floor
Kelly raking and doing a fine job :)

Ronald mudding and John-John measuring and hanging drywall

This was Hall, Ronald, and John John's first time to see the beach.
They were so excited and cute. I felt like a mom trying to capture their every move :)

In May, two of my bestest friends got married. Adrienne and Daniel got married on May 4 outside. It was beautiful :) I love them together. It was a blast!!

May 24th, Stacy and Landon got married. What a great couple. Now all of us college roomies are married off. I do not think I prayed harder for any one's husband than Adrienne, Stacy, or Tara. I love them and the men God set apart for them. I look forward to many MANY memories to come and we live life together.

As for the rest of the summer we have camp, work, mission trips, vacation, and the beginning of many things ahead. For all of you that think of us, pray for us, encourage us and challenge us. Know we know who you are.....we love and appreciate you all!! Thanks for taking the time to be filled in on our lives.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Political priorities

If you were to ask who in our house is more involved with politics these days, or really anyday, it is Michael. I hope that one day he has the opportunity to teach history at a college level. He is so knowledgable and really inspiring when I realize how much I don't know about our nation's history and the old adage rings true......history always repeats itself.

Recently, with the rest of the country, we have watched and discussed the presidential candidates as the primarys are in full swing. As a public school teacher, I am surrounded with many friends and coworkers that have a different views politically. At the end of the day, it boils down to your political priorities. It kills me how many people make the statement "I don't know anything about anyone - I don't watch any of that stuff" Granted, I know it is not fun family entertainment and after a full day of my mind going crazy, I am not ususally dying to turn on to Glenn Beck or Hannity and Colmes. However, where has the personal responsiblity of knowing who you are voting for gone? Why, as Americans, are we so apathetic about our freedom and the cost it was and STILL IS to so many families? Why are we so passionate about voting for a party instead of the person?

I will be the first to say, I am not throughly impressed at this point with anyone running. All four candidates have a weak view of national security which, to me, is a major priority. Last week I learned that Obama, a candidate, refuses to stand and say the pledge or sing our national anthem. He was also voted "most liberal senator of 2007" by the National Journal for reasons such as voting against a foreign policy that allows the US to listen to phone calls made inside the US to other countries suspected of terriorist organizations and claiming that a baby born of an unsuccessful abortion (aka a LIVE birth) is still not considered human. To be honest, it scares me how many I work with and know that are considering voting for a man who has little to no patriotism or concern for the future of America. All that they see is he is a Democrat, African-American, and claims "It is time for a change"

I understand that regardless of who is in the presidential position God is still on his throne and in control. I understand that this world is not my home and I will never be comfortable here. I understand that the bible states that we are to PRAY for our government and leadership (we cannot assume that that means they are Christians) (1 Tim. 2:1-3)

At the end of the day, at least be able to articulate why you stand beside the candidate you are voting for and not just the image they withhold. Know their views instead of just complaining about candidates and voting for someone due to a party. Be an educated voter and speak up. The freedom we know now may change due to many ignorant people not taking the time to find out why they are chosing their candidate and the priorities they stand beside.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

starting today....

The last few weeks I have explored the world of blogging. To be honest, I have been quite content with the "no strings attached" philosophy of facebook. You can get on, check if you have anything in the inbox, look at others new updates, and then hop off. Recently, Katie (Hagen) Hinson joined the facebook club and I was thrilled to read about her life and "catch up". Ridley Barron, my old youth minister, also joined facebook and from there I read his blog. It was then I got addicted. I LOVED really reading and catching up more than the superficial quotes and tacky pictures (sorry- have people forgotten that a picture is worth 1000 words? it amazes me what people chose to post). I have always loved to journal (any ideas on what to do with the THOUSANDS I have filled in a rubbermaid tub in the garage?? - not exactly a garage sell item :) ) and fiqured I would begin to blog when Michael and I had our first kid and I would be at home more. I guess starting today I am getting a head start....

I am teaching kindergarten and loving it. I always knew that I was called to teach but after Michael and I got married and moved to Louisville I was ready to mark teaching off my list. If you ever have seen Dangerous Minds, Coach Carter, GridIron Gangs - those were my students. When we moved back to Tennessee, teaching was far from an option for a job. I became the student ministry assistant at our church for our 4 youth pastors and loved the high intensity, ministry saturated job it was. As time passed, I sensed the Lord was wanting me back in the classroom. The more I prayed, the more clear it became. I had more time to spend with the youth at church, I could better fulfill the role of being a youth minister's wife, and I would simply be in the community with lost children and families. I was ready to go back if that meant the same senerio as Louisville again. No where close to Louisville........I teach under an incredibly Godly principal, the other kindergarten teachers are also my age, and the school is a low-income school with appreciative, lost kids. I LOVE IT. God is so good to allow me to minister there.

As I said earlier, Michael is a youth pastor so our time is filled with teenagers or five year olds. Our weeks are full as well as our weekends. It is easy for us to run on the strands of our own energy. We joke and say that when we do have kids our lives will actually slow down because we will have to be home. I know.....many of you are laughing but if you know us personally, you are saying.....that is TRUE! We are so thankful to be married. Even tonight at Cracker Barrell, I was cackling laughing at something we were talking about....isn't marriage the neatest gift and creation from God? We have nothing to complain about. Our lives are so full. I hope you are able to jump on our blog and be refreshed and laugh out loud. We are looking forward to all God has in store for us in 2008!