Sunday, September 9, 2007

High Society

Frank and I had the opportunity to go to the Dallas Symphony Orchestra this weekend. Laura Stiller works for a non profit organization and the DSO gave them a lot of free tickets, so they invited us to join them on a fun, free date evening. We were told that seats would probably not be great, but we would at least get the priviledge of going. We met them in the lobby and enjoyed some coffee and cake before the show. We took a few pictures ahead of time since we werent allowed to take any in the auditorium - and I fully intended to follow that rule. Too bad it didnt work out.
Frank and I before the show - trying to look refined so we would fit in with the old money of Dallas. That didnt work either. :)

Meet the Stillers. Danny and Laura just moved back to Texas recently, and we've enjoyed spending time with them. Check out their blog here.
Like I said, we werent supposed to take pictures in the auditorium, but when were surprised by our amazing seats, I HAD to take a picture of the stage to show how close we were. I didnt even use the zoom! I looked up the seating sections and prices before we left, so I knew how good we had it. We were in some of the most expensive seats in the house!! We are really spoiled now. We throughly enjoyed the performance - especially the very animated conductor. He stole the show. We will definitely be going back.
Like I said - High Society. Yes, I pretty much always have a camera with me.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Friday Night Lights

Have you ever watched those football movies where the setting is in a small town, football is a way of life, everyone knows everyone, and the quarterback is king? I live there. Seriously. What's crazier is that I didn't find this out until tonight - a year after we moved here. We went to our first Melissa Cardinal's home football game tonight, and after seeing half of one game we are officially hooked. I had never even seen the stadium, but you dont need directions - just follow the light. We could see the lights the minute we left the house. We didnt get there until right before half-time and we couldnt find seats in the sea of red shirts. The beachers were packed with students, band members, and proud parents. All that I expected. What I didn't expect was to know someone in every section of the bleachers! We found about 15 of our high school kids, some of their parents, and THE REST OF THE CHURCH! I'm not kidding. The pastor, associate pastor, youth minister, all the youth workers (us included), the worship leader, the audio/video technition, Sunday school leaders, choir members - you name it! Our neighbors from across the street were there too! We do so much work with the HS kids that we rarely get an opportunity to socialize with the rest of the church. We had the best time between watching some great football, seeing our kids, talking to the adults, and cheering for the band. We even bought our very own Melissa Cardinal t-shirts for the next game.
I just cant tell you how blessed I feel to live somewhere so unique - at least to me. We moved to Melissa from Dallas (yes, an actual Dallas zip code) and life is SO different here. I've often heard that we are very "country" - and while we do have some of those qualities - I think that "community" describes us so much better. I really do know my neighbors - and not just their names. I KNOW my neighbors. They come over often. I trust them and I feel safe here. This place just keeps getting better with time. First we fell in love with the house, then the neighborhood, then the neighbors, then the church, then the youth group, then the youth leaders, then the kids, now the community. I LOVE living here. It's hard to care so much about wanting the town to grow and focusing on rising property value when you see how much this type of community is really worth. I wouldnt change it.
Here is the MHS Band playing at half time. I was told that they do have formal uniforms, but they dont wear them while it's so hot. Four of our kids are in the band.

David and Frank after the halftime show. Dave plays trumpet in the band and he is also a great drummer. We have so many talented kids.

Cambria and I at the game. I totally just plopped myself down in the middle of the student section to take this picture with her. I heard alot of "who's that??" from the kids around me. haha. I love being older now and truly not being worried about what people think. If only I could have attained this power in highschool! Oh well - Cambria handled it great. In fact, she introduced me to the mascot. She must be way more confident than I was at her age. Love her.

I can't wait to do this again, but unfortunately next week is not a home game. However, when those home-games roll around, just know in advance that we have plans. :)

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Every Day a Blessing

As I sit at my desk at work feeling pretty grumpy I am reminded of a story that Amy told me about last week written by Max Lucado. It's about the difference between dogs and cats. I'm feeling more like the cat today (with respect to work) and feeling convicted about it at the same time. That is a tough place to stand since I have to make a concious decision what to do with my thoughts. I can no longer just sit here and pout without feeling bad about it, yet I don't want to decide to be happy either. I'll keep working on it and let you know what I decide. In the mean time, enjoy the cute story.

Excerpts from the diary of a dog:
8:00 a.m. Oh boy, dog food – my favorite.
9:30 a.m. Oh boy, a car ride – my favorite.
9:40 a.m. Oh boy, a walk – my favorite.
10:30 a.m. Oh boy, another car ride – my favorite.
11:30 a.m. Oh boy, more dog food – my favorite.
12:00 p.m. Oh boy, the kids – my favorite.
1:00 p.m. Oh boy, the yard – my favorite.
4:00 p.m. Oh boy, the kids again – my favorite.
5:00 p.m. Oh boy, dog food again – my favorite.
5:30 p.m. Oh boy, Mom – my favorite.
6:00 p.m. Oh boy, playing ball – my favorite.
8:30 p.m. Oh boy, sleeping in my master’s bed – my favorite.

Excerpts from the diary of a cat:
Day 283 of my captivity. My captors continue to taunt me with bizarre little dangling objects. They dine lavishly on fresh meat while I’m forced to eat dry cereal. I’m sustained by the hope of escape and the mild satisfaction I derive from ruining a few pieces of furniture. Tomorrow I may eat another houseplant. I attempted to kill my captors this morning by weaving through their walking feet. Nearly succeeded. Must try this strategy at the top of the stairs. Seeking to disgust and repulse these vile oppressors, I once again induced myself to vomit on their favorite chair. Must try this on their bed. To display my diabolical disposition, I decapitated a mouse and deposited the headless body on their kitchen floor. They only cooed and condescended, patting my head and calling me a “strong little kitty.” Hmm – not working according to plan. During a gathering of their accomplices, they placed me in solitary confinement. I overheard that my confinement was due to my power of allergies. Must learn what this means and how to use it to my advantage.
I am convinced the other household captives are flunkies, perhaps snitches. The dog is routinely released and seems naively happy to return. He is, no doubt, a half-wit. The bird speaks with the humans regularly. Must be an informant. I am certain he reports my every move. Due to his current placement in the metal cage, his safety is assured, but I can wait. It is only a matter of time.

The day of a dog. The day of a cat. One content, the other conniving. One at peace, the other at war. One grateful, the other grumpy. Same house. Same circumstances. Same master. Yet two entirely different attitudes.
Which diary reads more like yours? Were your private thoughts made public, how often would the phrase “Oh boy, my favorite” appear?
“Oh boy, sunup – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, breakfast – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, traffic jam – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, vacuuming – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, root canal – my favorite.”
Well, not even a dog would relish the root canal. But wouldn’t we like to relish more of our day? We can. Begin with God’s grace. As we accept his forgiveness, our day of gripes and groans becomes a day of gratitude.

from "Every Day Deserves a Chance" by Max Lucado

Monday, September 3, 2007


We spent most of our day at church yesterday, which is always fun. On top of the normal morning and evening services, we attended the "back to school bash" for the kids. We played some dodgeball and basketball while Frank resurrected the "Frank's Franks" restaurant and cooked hot dogs for everyone. All of the leaders were sporting the new Xtreme Student Ministry t-shirts that Tricia designed. They turned out so well that we decided Target would probably sell them. haha. We really do have all of the talent tucked away in the youth department!

I'm sure there is some kind of joke here about chuch, angels, fighting for the kingdom, etc, but it escapes me. From L2R: Elisha, Wes, Donna, Marcus, Tricia, Me and Frank.
Miss Kate and Miss Ashley.

Krissy, Cambria, Trisha, and Ashley.

Here is a fabulous picture of Brett Billings rocking the Coach handbag.

***KATE: I fully expect you to post this on your myspace page and promote it!***

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Old Friends

On Saturday, Kristin and I met two of my old roommates, John and Kevin, their wives - and now Kevin's little girl - at Pappasitos in Dallas. Things have definitely changed since those late nights of computer games and vast quantities of Mountain Dew!

Above: The three of us, and then the three of us with our better halves and Kevin with Caroline.

Once Kristin saw Caroline, it was over for the rest of us. Kevin and Margaret were happy to show off how good their happy little girl is (for more of Caroline's adventures, go here).

Some of Margaret's friends also made the trip to Pappasitos (see below). It was a big fun party - fun to catch up, see old friends, and eat some good food.