Wednesday, January 28, 2009
I really do have to brag on my husband a little, he has not taken one day off and done nothing....he has been a working machine in between the job hunt. I am so blessed to have him in my life and I am sure I don't tell him that often enough. Way to go Donner....I love YOU!!!
Friday, January 23, 2009
Thursday, January 22, 2009
A psalm of David1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3 he restores my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness
for his name's sake.
4 Even though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death, [a]
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD
Could He make it any more clear that He is in charge of my husband, me, our marriage?
It is so easy to get discouraged in the world that we live in but for those who follow Jesus we are not to worry about what the world tells us, because it is lost. We are to follow Him who saved us and He WILL provide all of our needs and a good portion of our wants. May God Bless You All!!!
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Now there are the obvious trips to Iowa, Missouri and Texas to see family & friends; those excursions are always a treat and we look forward to seeing our loved ones.
Our time with the kids while they were growing up was always a whirlwind....so of course our first family trip would be the same. They were around 10 and 11 when we took this adventure; they had never seen any of the things we were about to show them. We picked them up in Dallas and drove down to Galveston,TX to see the ocean. We spent 2 days swimming in the waters, laying on the beach and feeding the seagulls.
After we were done exploring Galveston we headed to Carlsbad, NM to go to Carlsbad Cavern. Now I enjoy all of God's creations....the majestic mountains, the endless oceans and all the other treasures this country holds but Carlsbad Cavern was one of my favorites!! There are miles of caves that go hundreds of feet down into the earth; it holds lots of secret places with it's stalactites and stalagmites.....lots of rooms where nature give you the most amazing art show. After a day of cave exploring we went to the hotel and swam until dark the perfect end to the perfect day.
After an astounding day in New Mexico we spent the next day on a journey to the neighboring state to see The Grand Canyon. All I can say about The Grand Canyon is that it is so surreal......I thought I was looking at a life size postcard. It was a long day driving around but it took our breaths away.....it was inspiring.
After we had walked all day and seen incredible things it was time to get in the car and head to Colorado. The mountains were the next conquest on our family adventure. We pulled into Cortez, CO late so we went right to bed, we wanted to be rested for the next day. We left Cortez early and headed to Denver taking the scenic route. The kids favorite thing that day was seeing snow in June.......Andrew found a spot where it went to his waist.......they were so excited!!!!
Denver was a welcomed treat after a long day on the road until Chelsea got sick....poor thing had a terrible earache, so we found an emergency care center and found out that she had an inner ear infection.....they got her set up with some medicine and we went back to the hotel where Chelsea had a night of being doted on...she loved that!!! The next day we headed home to Warrenton.....we were gone 6 days.....boy did we see a lot in 6 days!!!!
The next big trip was to Put-in-Bay, OH. Our friend Jami's family had a couple of houses that they rented out and so for a surprise she rented one for all of us. It was such a fun time.....the main modes of transportation were golf carts and bicycles. We had a very relaxing time and made lots of fun memories....one that Jami has not let us live down was how vicious we were when we played spoons...we love to play spoons!!!!
The next two vacations were ones that the Donner and I took and they happened to be last year. Last January we went to Las Vegas, NV. Donnie was out there for work and he was going to have to be there for two weeks so I went out for the weekend between them. It was so fun just walking around, watching people and spending time together. I had never been to Vegas so it was very exciting for me.....my favorite place was the Belagio with the Dancing waters.....it was so beautiful that it made me a little emotional.....it doesn't take much.
The latest trip was back in October when we went to Seattle. It is beautiful country out there, I blogged about our trip already so I won't stay on this subject to long. It was a great time for Donnie and I to reconnect.
Our trips are made up of more than the awesome things we have seen, they are about the little things, the games, the talks, the pranks and just being together experiencing new things with the ones we love. I know that there are many more adventures for us to go on and I look forward to them. I feel blessed to have been able to have the opportunities that I have had in my life and thankful that I have a partner to help share my journey.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
We Interrupt this regularly scheduled story for a bit of silliness and wisdom.....much like marriage.....
I love being married. It's so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life. ~Rita RudnerMarriage is an alliance entered into by a man who can't sleep with the window shut, and a woman who can't sleep with the window open. ~George Bernard Shaw
One advantage of marriage is that, when you fall out of love with him or he falls out of love with you, it keeps you together until you fall in again. ~Judith Viorst
There is no substitute for the comfort supplied by the utterly taken-for granted relationship. ~Iris Murdoch
A wedding anniversary is the celebration of love, trust, partnership, tolerance and tenacity. The order varies for any given year. ~Paul Sweeney
Love is a flower which turns into fruit at marriage. ~Finnish Proverb
Never feel remorse for what you have thought about your wife; she has thought much worse things about you. ~Jean Rostand, Le Mariage, 1927
Like good wine, marriage gets better with age - once you learn to keep a cork in it. ~Gene Perret
It takes a loose rein to keep a marriage tight. ~John Stevenson
How can a woman be expected to be happy with a man who insists on treating her as if she were a perfectly normal human being. ~Oscar Wilde
Once a woman has forgiven her man, she must not reheat his sins for breakfast. ~Marlene Dietrich
The difficulty with marriage is that we fall in love with a personality, but must live with a character. ~Peter Devries
Marriage is three parts love and seven parts forgiveness of sins. ~Langdon Mitchell
What counts in making a happy marriage is not so much how compatible you are, but how you deal with incompatibility. ~George Levinger
Married life teaches one invaluable lesson: to think of things far enough ahead not to say them. ~Jefferson Machamer
Marriage is a feast where the grace is sometimes better than the dinner. ~Charles Caleb Colton
A man without a wife is like a vase without flowers. ~African Proverb
To keep your marriage brimming,
With love in the loving cup,
Whenever you're wrong, admit it;
Whenever you're right, shut up.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Every good story has heartbreak whether monumental or minimal. Loss and disappointment are just a part of life....a very important part, for that is where the real lessons are. I could leave the bad parts out but then I wouldn't really be telling you our story. In the span of 10 years there are many moments that are forgotten, everyday occurrences, trips to the store, phone calls with family and friends but then there are the things we would like to forget but once we do we stop being ourselves.
The first great loss that we encountered was when I miscarried our baby. I got pregnant in October of 1999....this was not an easy feat to begin with since my body doesn't process hormones correctly. December 1999 - I had been taking fertility drugs since that May (if anyone has ever taken them they do a number on your body and your mood) so as you can see it was already a long journey. My greatest desire has always been to be a mother.......in every sense of the word and that moment that I realized I was miscarrying was devastating......there was nothing I could do to stop it. Donnie was out of town so my sister-in-law took me to the Dr. and he confirmed it. We tried more fertility drugs but they were just to hard on my body and my mind. Yes, I have been angry with God about it....I have had my tantrums and one sided fights with Him. He is always there reassuring me that He loves me and He has a plan.....that the plans I have for my life are to small scale, He has amazing giant plans for me, He reminds me that I put limitations on what I want and He wants to give me everything, He reminds me once I move out of the way He can reveal Himself fully to me.
There have been times in the marriage where one or both of us has lost our way. Late Summer of 2004 Donnie and I separated. I learned a very important lesson during that time.....I had lost my way and I had lost who I was as a person. Up until that point I had been a very big people pleaser always changing for who ever I was around....I had completely lost who I was as a wife and myself. That time alone was very cathartic for me......I spent time with my real true love Jesus and by spending my time with Him I found who I was. Please do not think that I have it all together because I frequently get off course, I just don't stay on the wrong trail as long.
We lost my Aunt Linda January 2005 (she was my mom's sister). I have such fond memories of my Aunt and I miss her so much. She took me to see my first PG movie when I was 10....Grease.....I LOVED IT.....in fact we sat through it twice!!!! Then she took me to get my ears pierced. She was my cool aunt who lived in a big city and had an apartment with a pool.....how could a 10 year old not look up to her?? She fought cancer for several years and when I say fight I mean fight. Her faith was strong and a great example to me and the rest of our family.
December 2006 we lost my Grandma Lucile (my mom's mom). My Granny lived in the same house that my mom and her sisters were raised in. She was the head cook at the school of the little town she lived in for many years. She was just the sweetest lady you could ever meet, her warm heart and generosity were her trademarks. She carried a strong faith with a meek spirit...I don't ever remember a harsh word coming out of her mouth. I miss her, she was a constant force in a sometimes unstable world.
October 2007 we lost my Grandpa Paul (my stepmother's father). Paul was a sweet, sweet man. Blended families are sometimes a hard thing to be a part of but he always made me feel like I had always been his granddaughter. He was always ready with a big hug, a kiss and a giant smile. His passion was his family, flying and building experimental aircraft, farming was his trade he put his heart into all of it and he is greatly missed.
November 2007 we lost Sparkles. I know I have talked about her but that dear sweet soul was there through everyone of the previous losses. She was a comfort to me in so many ways. She was a loving soul when I was lonely, a fierce protector when I was scared, a consoling friend when the tears wouldn't stop and a constant companion. Her presence in our lives is greatly missed....in fact I think I could use her right now.
December 2008 Don lost his job. This was a sudden blow we were not expecting (does anyone really expect it?). I know that this loss is the start of something great. God gives you double for your trouble......He is preparing us for His great plan.
I will be honest with you this was a hard post to do. Reliving some of those memories was not easy but they have molded us to be who we are apart and together. The loved ones we have lost are still very precious to us and to remember the happy moments with them is pure joy to my soul. I thank God that I got to be in their presence and witness their greatness in this world.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
I have blogged about Sparkles before, she was our first puppy and she was a very special dog. Sparkles has been gone over a year now and to this day I still get misty eyed. She had such a fun little personality, was a good pal and was very loyal. Sparkles was a Blue Heeler / Husky mix and she was beautiful......always a little lady. I could go on and on about her but that would not be fair to you. I have never felt that way about a dog and it will be a very long time before I feel that way again.......losing her was like losing my best friend.
Biscuit was the next addition to our family and she has a definite personality. She is not a dumb dog by any means but she can be very dopey. She tends to use her size to bully everyone around....not just the other dogs but us too!!!! Biscuit was a stray and she decided that she liked our porch and since it was the coldest night of the winter we took pity on her and let her in.....she never left.
Raven is one of biscuits puppies....yes she was pregnant when she showed up on our doorstep. I love puppies and as soon as they were cleaned up I had them in my hands...to hold those fragile little lives in my hands made me realize what a miracle life is. I have not blogged about Raven yet so I won't say much about her because I don't want to take away from her story.
Boots is one of Sparkles' puppies....we had Sparkles for 7 years, we lived on a farm she was free to go all over.....not once did she get pregnant......we move to the city and what happens a stray jumps the fence and get her pregnant. Boots is our only boy and I haven't blogged about him yet so the same is true for him as it is for Raven.
We love each and everyone of our dogs they are part of our family.
Dogs have given us their absolute all. We are the center of their universe. We are the focus of their love and faith and trust. They serve us in return for scraps. It is without a doubt the best deal man has ever made. ~Roger Caras
Saturday, January 17, 2009
I did not give birth to my kids they came with the Donner as a package deal but there has never been a day when I didn't love them like they were my kids. Andrew and Chelsea have been through a lot in their lives and I think they have turned into remarkable young adults.
Andrew aka Buddy Wayne is the life of the party, he is always cracking jokes and with his quick wit and humor he keeps me in stitches. Andrew is just an all around happy kid...excuse me.......young man. He did not warm up to me as fast when Donnie and I first started dating (he was and is a HUGE Daddy's boy) and the thought of some stranger coming in and taking away some of his daddy time was not acceptable. As time went by he started to warm up to me and we soon had a very strong relationship. I am so glad that he decided to move here with us this past year, it seems like he has always lived here.
Andrew has ambitions of being a Police Officer someday; his real passion would be to join the service but he has terrible asthma which keeps him from following that dream. I know what ever he ends up doing he will be successful. We are very proud of the young man he has turned into.
Chelsea's ambitions are in the field of education, she wants to be a 2nd grade teacher and we are very proud of her for picking such a serving career. It has been fun to watch our Sweetpea blossom into such a lovely young woman and we are very proud of who she has become.
I loved this age....they still thought we knew everything!!
This is one of my favorites
What AWESOME Kids!!!!
Friday, January 16, 2009
The Donner and I have had 2 different houses that we have called home. One was located in Warrenton, MO on 300 acres with lots of wooded trails to walk and the other has been our current home here in Kansas City that is on little less than an acre but still has some woods to explore.
The place in Warrenton was a little slice of heaven on earth.....we didn't really have any neighbors and we had room to roam. It was so quiet and peaceful but there was one problem.....we didn't own it....it wasn't really ours. It was a big old farm house that needed some work and we put a little into it but when it is not yours the motivation to do a lot is not there. I do miss the parties we had, 4 of July was always at our house and we would start the day early with food, games, hiking and last but not least fireworks!!!!! We were about 1 mile from the fair grounds so we could sit in our yard and watch them with out traffic. There are many memories from that little oasis and it was hard leaving it but we had another adventure to go on.
We moved to Kansas City, Kansas City here we are (imagine I am singing the Kansas City song to you)!! This was the first house that I Donnie and I had ever owned together....it is our home. We closed on February 14, 2003 but did not get possession until February 17. Once we got possession my husband went crazy.....we had nothing with us other than a few odds and ends. The truck with our stuff was stuck in a snow storm so they were going to be late....what does the Donner decide to do....tear down a wall. We'd had the conversation about what our first project would be and there was no discussion of a wall being torn down......again we had nothing for him tear walls down with, other than a steel bar we used for horseshoes. Needless to say the wall came down and many other things have been torn apart and put back together.
I know that someday we will leave this little house but we will always have the memories just like our first house and there will be more memories made down the line. For now we will just tuck ourselves away in our little haven and be thankful for all the Lord has given us.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
My Daddy met my Mom while working for the phone company in my Mom's hometown; they worked for Ma Bell. Mom was an operator and Daddy worked the lines and one thing lead to another. After a quick courtship the got married and 9 months after the wedding another member joined the family.....ME!!!!
I grew up on a farm and I must say it was a wonderful way to grow up. There were always adventures to go on. I am an only child and I have a very active imagination so you can only imagine the entertainment I could find on a farm.
My parents divorced when I was 15 so Mom and I moved across the field into the old farm house until I graduated High School. After graduation we moved to into town and that is where I met my first husband.
I was way to young in age an maturity to have made that decision but I did it for the wrong reasons and with a bad start like that it was sure to end. That divorce was very instrumental in my growing up and though it was hard to go through it got me to where I am now. I was kind of lost for a few years but eventually I found my way......it was by the love and grace of Jesus.
When I took the job with Olan Mills I figured it would just be another job in a long search for my purpose in life; it was so much more than that!!! I had been dating my boyfriend at that time off and on for a couple of years but it never seemed like it was going to go anywhere. He was good to me and I genuinely loved him but I was not in love with him and I wanted more.
The phrase that things happen when you least expect them has certainly been true in my life. I was not looking for some one new in my life.....I had decided that life was not going to change....I mean I had a man who loved me and I loved him....we were good friends....I wasn't expecting anything else.
Then that fateful October day came when I pulled into that church parking lot and everything changed. My life went in a direction I never even dreamed it would have. I am so blessed to be married to a man that I can laugh, and cry with. I married my soul mate my other half my best friend.
Yes, we have met challenges but that has made us stronger and ready to face what ever comes our way. We know that Father God is in charge of us that He will light our steps and when we stray onto the unlighted path He will be there to help us find our way.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Now I am telling his story as an outsider and sharing with you some of the tidbits that I have gleaned from family gatherings and the time that I have spent with him. To start out Donnie grew up around St. Louis, MO, his family moved around the St. Louis metro and finally settled west in a little town called Jonesburg, MO. His parents were very young when they had the kids and as young parents often do......the biological father decided not to be a part of the family anymore. But that is OK because Donnie's step dad stepped right in and made those kids his own. Donnie has an older sister and a younger brother.....yep he is a middle child.
From the stories I have been told about his growing up....he was quite ornery.....not a lot has changed. There was the time that he rode his bike into a brick wall.....I believe he was playing chicken and his brakes went out.......and numerous stories of him and his siblings having "disagreements"....typical kid stuff.
He married his High School sweetheart a year or two out of High School and started working for Olan Mills taking pictures for the club plan. With being a newly married couple and him traveling so much it was only a matter of time until they would part ways. After the break up of his marriage he decided to move to Iowa and continue his Olan Mills career. He moved in with a friend that worked for the same company in the Church Division......they were just a couple of single guys working and having "fun"...we will leave it at that.
While having all of the "fun" he met his second wife and that is where our beautiful children come into the picture. He had gotten to that age where he thought it was time to settle down and have some kids so he did. I have my opinions why the marriage didn't last but that is what they are and this is a happy story so I will keep them to myself. Upon the demise of his second marriage he decided a career change was in order and that is how he got into the concrete business......he had worked construction off and on during the Olan Mills days...there were some very slow months in the picture business. His family had grown their business and they wanted Donnie to be a part of it. We have now made it to the portion of the story where I come in and I don't want to give it all away tonight.
Donnie is a creative, hard working, sweet, caring and loving husband. He has had some big mountains to overcome but he has chosen to learn from those long treacherous climbs instead of living in pity and anger.....I applaud him for not letting some rough times dictate who he is. It takes a stronger man to face his giants then to let his giants chase him.
I may lose my patience with him on a regular basis (he likes to push me) and I may not always like his brutal honesty but I could not imagine being married to anyone else....he is a good provider, a fun friend and a wonderful mate.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
This is that time of the year when the Donner and I both keep an eye on the calender because there is an important day coming up. Ten Years ago on the 23rd of January I became Mrs. Donald Edwards.......and boy has it been a ride!!!! I am going to try and tell a bit of our story over the next 10 days....this will take great discipline on my part.
It all started 13.5 years ago, I had gotten a job working for Olan Mills in their Church Directory Division. My first day was in a little church in Northeastern Iowa (about 3-4 hours from my home) and as I pull up to the church, standing by his van is a very handsome fella. I would soon learn that he was my photographer for the week.
The first thing that stands out in my mind is the way he was with the clients....he made them feel at ease and by doing so took some great pictures. His wit made me laugh and I found myself instantly attracted to him.
His first impression of me was....hold on this is really romantic......"she's cute but she has a big butt"....yes that is the romantic story my husband tells our kids.....doesn't it make you feel all warm and fuzzy??
Now the fact that we were attracted to each other was not convenient for either of us, I had a boyfriend that was an absolute sweetheart but we were more like buddies than a couple and Donnie had been separated from his wife for 10 months and had other things going on in his life.
It all started with harmless flirting and before you know it I couldn't stop thinking about him.........this was not good......needless to say he was having the same issue. The more we were paired as a team and spent time together the inevitable happened.....we fell in love....I wasn't looking for it but it got me and it got me bad!!!!
It was not the ideal situation and if you were looking from the outside in you would have thought that I was crazy, but when I was around him it was like I had known him all my life........like a piece of me that had been missing was found. Though we have had our rough patches, I can't imagine my life with out him......he is my friend, my love and my strength.
Friday, January 9, 2009
This picture was in a bunch of my grandma's pictures but I am not sure who this couple is. It is on a postcard and from what I can discern that was common practice back in the old days. We have found a lot of pictures that have been made into postcards; not just portraits but daily life like the picture above.
I wonder if some day that will be the Donner and me? We will be sitting on our stoup with laptops reading the news.........do they even have stoups anymore?
I think that is part of the problem with our society, we are connected on the run.....what happened to the days of sitting on the front porch and talking to your neighbors and taking the time to listen to their responses?
I know we have gained much with the information age but has the price been bigger than the gain?
Perhaps I just have an old soul.
What do you think are we more connected or more disconnected?