welcome 2010

what a year 2009 has been. lots of change ... some good, some not so good. the past is the past, no matter what day it is. let's learn from it, and not dwell in it. that said -

I've made some resolutions, not entirely sure it's because it's now 2010. it's just another day to me now. I don't even think I made it to midnight! the Katie 10+ years ago would be hungover today ... but we don't need to go there.

* I've posted about Avon's Breast Cancer Walk happening next summer. I'm REALLY looking forward to it. I'm also happy to have committed myself to something that will force me to work out and get in a routine. since it's still 5 months away, I'm hoping by then it will be habit.

*read more books

*be more crafty with the boys ... that's the kind of stuff they will remember forever, then pass it on to their kids.

*a big one that has been always sitting in the back of my mind, is to do all those things that are on the to-do list, but never get done.
for example -
the boys have this tractor toy with special keys to make it work and one has been missing forever. well you can only go so far if you have 3 out of the 4 keys, so I've been wanting to contact the company and try and order that 4th key. yea, not fun. you can see why that one always gets pushed to the bottom of the to-do list!

I'm sure there are more things I'll think of later, you know how that goes.
what are your resolutions?????

merry chirstmas

Merry CHRISTmas!

Being a christian I've known December 25th is Jesus' birthday, but I've used this day like the rest of the world - this year included. I'm going through the motions of the day, the way our culture has created it to be. traveling to be with family, friends, eating lots of food, dressing up, buying and giving gifts ... which is all great, but if today is a birthday, shouldn't we be honoring Him? I'm going through the motions because I feel an obligation, and I don't feel like I'm honoring Jesus by doing it.

the obligation is from what I was raised in, by worldly people. and kids believe the truth to be whatever their parents do and say. after becoming an adult (whenever that was) it then becomes my fault, my ignorance, my obligation, my distraction from what Christmas is REALLY suppose to be.

a true believer doesn't just believe in Jesus. a true believer doesn't just go to church on Sundays. it's not just about reading the bible, it's about living it. and not just on Christmas, but every single day.

going through the motions of obligation is NOT living it. I don't want to pass onto my children that same obligation. Today we honor the birth of our Lord.

I'm not entirely sure what that will include (I'm thinking volunteering &/or a soup kitchen) but I just know that how we are doing it this year is not right. Give in a way you can; give with faith to people who actually need it ... like Jesus came to heal the sick, to those who needed it and were faithful for it.

Americans consume way too much as it is ... and then to throw Christmas on top of that, then it just become ridiculous! how much stuff does a person need?!

All that said, we've decided to tell Samuel that Santa is a made up story. He's definitely not traumatized, in fact, I'm not convinced he totally believes us. he says "what about all the songs mama?" I guess he'll get it next year!

Happy Birthday Jesus!

volunteer gift wrap

I recently found out that bookstores, like Borders and Barnes & Noble, take volunteers for gift wrapping during the holiday season.

They will also allow you to collect tips, but only for a non-profit organization. Perfect for me since I've registered to walk in Avon's Walk for Breast Cancer. I was there last night and only made $10, which covers my gas to get there since I'm in the sticks, but that's ok! it's fun and it gets the word out about the walk anyway.

Now this would not be for you real creative types. They gave me a folding table with paper, tape, scissors, a few bows, but that's it. it's pretty blah. you may have guessed, everyone that did get the wrapping were men. ha! typical, but hey, at least they got it done!

I called yesterday and got a couple different shifts, but only because someone cancelled. apparently they start scheduling this in July/Aug. I had no idea!

this could be good for churches, moms clubs, or schools. lots of possibilities.

just wanted to spread the word.

food donation

Land O'Lakes is donating $1 for every person who clicks on their web site.
Go to their website (listed below) and click on the top right side of the
screen where it says: “You Click, We donate. It's that easy.”
Please feel free to pass this on to all of your friends. Food shelves need our
donations more than ever this year!

pink gloves

how fitting ... after I wrote this last blog about my Avon Breast Cancer Walk, my mom sent me this email. please check it out.

all you need to do is click on the video
then you can delete it right away
it's the click on it that matters and you'll help in the fight against breast cancer
thank you so much!

In honor of breast cancer awareness!

When the video gets 1 million hits, Medline will be making a huge contribution to the hospital, as well as offering free mammograms for the community.

Please check it out. It's an easy and great way to donate to a wonderful cause, and who hasn't been touched by breast cancer?


Avon Outreach

I just attended an introduction meeting for Avon's Breast Cancer Walk, happening June 2010. I've done The Relay for Life for the American Cancer Society a couple of times; once as an individual walker, then the following year as team captain for the local mom's club in was involved with. it was very satisfying for me, and since then, my heart aches to help in any way I can.

Avon's walk is set up much differently than the ACS Relay. for one, this is a 39 mile trek in the Rocky Mountain region; 26 miles on Saturday then the remaining 13 on Sunday. I have NEVER walked anything close to this, ever. I think th
e longest continuous walk I've done is 5 or so miles.
they also have every registered walker commit to raising $1800. they don't really care if you come individually or create a team, anyone can join.

it's a fundraiser, but also much more. attending the walk itself will not raise any more money, but it is to come together for the cause, to see survivors & co-survivors, to see exactly where your fundraising
efforts are going to, to hear stories & testimonies, to encourage hope & offer support. I'm sure to be in the presence of women who have to fight this fight, or help others fight, will be inspiring.

I was telling Matt all about it and he will support me, but he honestly doesn't see the point of the walk itself. he's always been pessimistic about the medical industry, believing it's one big conspiracy and everyone is just in it for the money. but more so, he also believes God giveth, and He taketh away.
for me, the conspiracy part is partially true. just the evils of the industry, the world. but I too believe God gives and rightly takes away, but I also believe that God works through other people (like the doctors & nurses) and also using foundations such as Avon and ACS.

one of my favorite passages. you should read it.

being a registered walker, they will be assigning me someone to work with me to make sure I get to $1800, as well as, work with me on training. because I WILL need to train. 39 miles in 2 days?! oh my goodness, I'm in for a butt-whoopin'! but hopefully starting now (6 months away) I can do it. I honestly haven't been to the gym since I was pregnant with Elliott, so it's definitely time to get off my butt and get physical again. so yay for getting skinny! another plus to starting now, I will lose some weight before Hawaii!

I have a GPS in my car, and as I was driving home the other day I noticed how far away the next town is, it's about 15 miles. so I guess some days I'll have Matt drop me off and I'll just walk home. seems crazy, but that's only 1/2 of the first day!

as far as the $1800 goes, I'm planning on using my Avon business to help promote it. so with that, along with my friends and family, I'm hoping to exceed my goal. I should be getting a website set up for it soon, and when I do, I'll be sure to post it. every $1 helps!

so in the future, I'll be blogging about this journey. it doesn't exactly compare to having cancer, but it's the least I can do to help.

have you participated in Avon's Breast Cancer Walk before? tell me about it.

c'mon 32

so my hubby can't keep a secret to save his life. his anticipation and excitement builds up too much and he simply can't stand it. he tries to make it so I pry it out of him, but this is how it really went down -
"so do you want to know?"
"no I can wait until Christmas"
"want to play 20 questions?"
"no, I'll wait"
"oh, but you'll need a few months to prepare"
"yea right"
"no really. don't you want to know?!"
"you're pathetic. alright, what is it?"

so for Christmas, he is taking us to HAWAII during my birthday!! so on my 32nd birthday, we will be up in a helicopter getting a birds eye view of the islands!

for one entire day, we'll be at a luau. 10 hours of eating, drinking, belly dancing ... and whatever else they do.
he also found a VIP pass that will be good for museums, parks, spas, and a whole bunch of other extras for the entire trip.

us = him and I ... NO KIDS

my birthday isn't until February, but the whole idea is to leave 3 feet of snow behind us. right now in December, we have snow but not tons and tons of it. by February we'll be so sick of snow, it'll be great timing.

now he hasn't actually purchased the tickets yet, but he definitely knows better than to play with my emotions like that!
anyone know - will prices be better after the new year when holiday travel is over?

I've wanted a getaway with my hubby for what seems like forever. of course I love my kids, but mama & papa have to come first sometimes. whoo hoo! I'm soooooo excited!

got any insider tips for me? I'm all ears!

living in the past

usually living in the past is a bad thing ... but I had to. let me explain.

I am driving a '91 Jeep Cherokee; had to get a 4x4 once we moved here. anyway, being a slightly older car it has a tape deck. hubby is planning on installing a CD player soon, but in the meantime I need my music. I am a car singer! I can't help it. since we live in the forest, I'm in the car a good 20-25 minutes before I get reception for any radio stations, which is a bummer.

at the thrift store the other day, I see a HUGE bin of tapes. because really, who has a tape deck anymore that uses it? so I'm digging through and find an oldie but a goodie, from back in my early teenage years ... dare I say it and totally embarrass myself? ... I paid .50 each for 2 New Kids on the Block tapes; Hangin' Tough & Step by Step. if I remember right, it's their very first and second albums.

yep, I loved them. now I didn't have the pillow cases or the action figure/dolls or write to their fan club, but I did have a poster or two in my bedroom, daydreaming about Joey, the baby of the group. aaawwwww!

look at this picture. then and now. look at that big fluffy hair! I don't care, they were studs then and now!

if you are too young to know what I'm talking about, they were my N Sync ... or if you happen to be too old to know, they were my Beatles.

now my cousin is a fan still. do you know they are on tour today? I think they have a new album, but I'm positive they are singing their oldies still. how could they not?! anyway, she just went on a road trip to Chicago to see them in concert and even got her picture taken with her heart throb Jordan; lucky girl!

ok, you're turn. what music do you love when you were a teenager? c'mon, make me laugh!

AIDS day

first let me say, these are just MY thoughts. if you'd like to have a civil discussion about this subject, I'm all ears. that said, I have mixed feelings about today, which is AIDS day.

I read an article about a gay couple in Argentina that wanted to marry today. the government stopped it, saying it was unconstitutional. it's going up for review, blah, blah, blah, whatever loopholes Argentina has to make them jump through.

there are gay marriage battles all over our country too, since it's not legal in every state ... yet. I believe it will be allowed in the majority of states, sooner than later.

before I was saved, I believed that anyone can love anyone. gay, straight, whatever; "all you need it love." (side note: the Beatles are awesome!)

knowing God now and reading his word, I have come to learn how wrong it is. simply stated, it's a sin. there are lots of scripture about sexual immorality (from a bible-believing perspective will include homosexuality), but here are a couple passages about homosexuality specifically - Romans 1:18-32 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

I have had some experience with AIDS. I had a co-worker/friend die from AIDS. I was his assistant at a furniture store; anyone that works full time knows that you often spend more time with your co-workers than your family and friends. this was my situation. we really got to know each other after 40-60 hours per week. he was a great guy. openly gay (not that he really had to tell you he was!) and was in a monogamous relationship, or so he thought.

he got a routine check up, and because he was gay, got tested for HIV. not exactly a test you can study for. he was diagnosed in February '98. wow, it's been 10 years already. I still think about him often.
his doctors put him on medication right away so it wouldn't progress to AIDS. he quit his job so he could move and be closer to his family, since he didn't know how long he'd have left in this life; he did this just a couple months after his diagnosis. apparently he had a major allergic reaction to his medication and on the drive to his parents, his eyes got so swollen an ambulance had to be called from the road. he went to the hospital and never left.
can you imagine having just 2 months to process all that? the one you love has not only cheated on you, but gave you HIV?!

it was all very sad. a co-worker and I drove to his funeral. he was raised a christian, which I never knew about him. I was a VERY new christian then, so I didn't ask or really talk about it much. on the program included a poem he wrote. it was about the torture of being a gay man, but having a christian mind/beliefs.

so I believe he knew it was wrong all along. how tragic.

I have a pastor friend who has this perspective on homosexuality -
he believes people are born gay, just like people are born with any disease. it's unfortunate, but it happens. we all have our "issues." sexual immorality is a big one for a lot of people; it could be pornography, prostitutes, adultery, homosexuality, among others. it is sin. we all have sin in one way, shape, or form. sin has had a snowball effect on mankind for so long, that people are literally born that way now. for any of our "issues" the KEY is self control. do we give in to our fleshly desires? we're certainly not supposed to if it causes us to sin; check out the link here.

I like this perspective. it makes sense to me.

what doesn't make sense are gay christian churches. how can they interpret those verses differently and justify their lifestyles?

of course there are other ways to get AIDS. you don't hear about it too much though.

Starbucks (and others) are donating part of your purchase to AIDS awareness. I'm conflicted. I'm all for supporting cancer organizations; cancer comes without warning or any reason at all. but supporting AIDS day seems to be supporting the "right to be gay." yes, I know it's also for raising awareness through education, but ultimately, it supports the gay community. no? this could just be my ignorance ... but that's me being honest. I wouldn't go to the gay pride parade just because I like parades and rainbows. would you?

leave me a comment no matter what you believe. I'm interested.

ps. I saw a bumper sticker a few weeks ago that I really like.
it said - I'm not gay, I just like rainbows