Saturday, May 26, 2012

Golf & The Weekend

Oh, I am trying so hard to be good at golf.  I have one good swing for every five terrible ones.  Don't worry.  I'm working on it.  And I have blisters to prove it.

Part of me doesn't really even care if I ever excel at golfing (which I'm sure drives my competitive husband nuts).  The grass smells so sweet, the sun is warm on my skin, the birds are chirping...  And every once in a while when I DO hit a winner, the sound is just the most delightful "ping" I have ever heard.  Heart.

Mark and I will sleep well tonight.  Saturday was filled with golf, friends, drives through the country, pita pockets and fresh veggies.  Such a good day.  Happy weekend, folks!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Beautiful Mamas - In Honor of Mother's Day (A Week Late!)

Things that make my mom beautiful...
Mom is artistic and spontaneous, goofy and firey, an extravagant gift-giver, an adventurer.  Though she hardly ever plans ahead, life is always fun and exciting.  She is a thrifty and imaginative decorator, and she has a new-earth-shattering-sort-of-idea every five minutes.  Mom always says it like it really is and leaves no room for drama.  She is so mushy, it sometimes makes me sick, but I suppose that's what mamas are supposed to be like.  :)

Things that make my mother-in-law, Bev, beautiful...

Bev is such a learner...always reading a new book, always excited to share a new truth about the Lord.  She is a gifted hostess, has a contagious laugh, and is always up for a deep conversation.  Mark gets his passion for discipling from his mama...her week is full of loving on kids, having coffee with the elderly, and encouraging young moms.  Best of all, Bev makes me feel like one of her biological daughters.  I'm blessed to be so "enfolded" into her family.

Happy belated Mother's Day, mamas!  You are delightful.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Birthday Cheer

It's Mark's birthday today!  He's the best husband ever, and he is my most favorite today is one of my favorite days.  Special thanks to Dave and Bev DeYounge for making, birthing and raising him.  Even specialer thanks to the Lord for giving him to me.  Oh, how I love him.  May 12 is such a great day.

He is celebrating right now with some good friends and some golf and sun.  We will celebrate some more with other friends as we attend lots of graduation parties this afternoon.  We will celebrate MORE tonight with some of Mark's favs - Cracker Carrot Casserole, Bohemian Meatballs and Butterfinger Cake.  

We will celebrate even MORE on Monday by going...  Oh, wait.  That's still a surprise.  I will tell you more about Monday's festivities later.

Happy birthday, Mark!    


Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Extreme Easter Hunt 2012

Time to catch up! 

We had a great Easter weekend with my family in Northeast Iowa.  This year was the fourth annual Tegeler Extreme Easter Hunt.  

Though most Easter hunts involve plastic eggs, a large yard and jelly beans, the Tegeler Hunt has included GPSs, ammunition boxes, rock climbing, lots of hiking, Astro Van rides across 3 counties, picnic lunches, and snakes.  We are talking about a real, live adventure, folks.

This year's Hunt started with a loud knock on Mark & I's bedroom door at 5:30 in the morning, a note "from the Easter Bunny" shoved under our door, followed by strict instructions to be dressed in layers and ready to go by 7 AM sharp.  

The rest of the clues took us on a more urban adventure this year... our local small town coffee shop, where we received not-so-quality, slightly drippy, but personalized coffee mugs from Mom!

...40 miles away to Grandma Betty's house for Easter breakfast-in-a-bag. random signs along the interstate, in search of more clues...

...30 more miles away to the Field of Dreams!  All of Mark's life-long dreams have been fulfilled.  I would also like to mention that my 85-year-old grandma played baseball with us.  In addition to this, I would also like to mention that I totally slid into home.  It was epic.

...30 more miles away to a quaint little cable car ride...

...we all packed in...

...went up a steep, steep hill... enjoy the pretty view... some cute shops... a yummy pizza place... the Mississippi River Museum...which was much more fun and interesting than I expected!

...Mark Twain was even at the museum!  Mark DeYounge got jealous of Mark Twain and left...

Phew.  It was a busy and crazy and fun and adventurous day, friends.  Special thanks to my mom and dad for their planning and clue-creating, and decorating!  Here's to next year!  

Sunday, May 6, 2012


To say we love peanut butter is an understatement.  We LOVE it.  When's the last time you scooped out a spoonful for a snack?  Heck, when's the last time you stuck your finger in the jar?  I highly recommend it.  My bestie, Lisha, calls those "butterfingers".  Yum.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The National Day of Prayer and My Love/Hate Relationship

This Thursday is the National Day of Prayer, friends.

I have to admit, I have always been semi-turned off by the corny NDP logos, the predictable Christian radio announcements, the expected conservative leaders joining the NDP task force as spokespeople, the brochures and bumper stickers, the token theme verse, the obligatory endorsement by the President...

Please don't hate me.

My irritation stems from a heart wishing that prayer could be much more organic and much less programmatic, more heartfelt and less obligatory, more diverse and less canned.  And, I wish their logo was a little less predictable.

Here's comes the "however"...  It is a big however.

HOWEVER, I love prayer.  I love my Jesus, my Best Friend.  I love communicating with Him.  I appreciate the hard work and long hours that many people have put into organizing the National Day of Prayer.  If I could, I would hug David Jeremiah and Shirley Dobson.  And, I don't even like hugs.  Heck, I even plan to take part in the National Day of Prayer.  I'll be at a prayer meeting Thursday night, and you can bet I'll be interceding on behalf of our nation.  


Please don't feel obligated to play along or pretend that you like prayer on Thursday just so you will look like a respectable, moral, patriotic sort of person. 

Please don't jump on the prayer-bumper-stickered-bandwagon just because our buddy David Jeremiah endorses the whole thing.  

And, please don't disregard the it all (whether that is prayer or God Himself) even if you are turned off by the conservatism and the hypocrisy of Christians like me.  We're so sorry we've come across in strange and hurtful ways, at times.

Please, please please...
Use the National Day of Prayer as an opportunity, an invitation, a reminder.  Remember the Lord.  Know He is inviting you to join Him in interceding on behalf of our nation.  Make the most of the opportunity to genuinely and sacrificially turn, to seek, to repent, to listen, to follow well.  He will hear.  He will come and meet with you...  Even if you don't attend an organized prayer meeting on Thursday.

Please use the National Day of Prayer as a springboard - the first of many days that you will continue in a lifestyle of prayer.  When the logo is obsolete, when the Christian radio has moved on to the latest MercyMe hit, when the spokespeople are no longer encouraging you to take part, when the brochures and bumper stickers are in the trash can, and when the President has moved on to "more important" things...may we still be living our lives in an atmosphere of prayer.  Always listening, always communing, always submitting to His lordship.  May it be so, Lord!  Help us! 
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