Friday, October 21, 2011

There is no mountain to tall...

God can not move it.

I wrote a previous post about the song "He Will Carry You" last week and the impact it is making on my life and the present time. This song has been in my head each and every day this week and for quite some time. The words and lyrics of this song are so powerful and TRUE!

Chris and I are currently living with his parents while we try to get our house in Shawnee, OK sold. (That is one of our "mountains" that needs moving at the present time) I got an email today from our realtor that they showed it last night and hope something will come out of it. They are also going to have an additional open house this coming Sunday. I have been praying for 4 months for our house to sell so Chris, Natalie and I can officially start "our new chapter" of life in here in Houston. I can hear my father and grandfather saying "Keep the Faith, Kellie. God is in Control". I know God will provide for my family and I and this mountain will eventually be moved.
As my dad would say... "This is a trust thing!"

Dear God,
I trust you and I know You will move this mountain in Your timing! Thank you Lord for Your continued blessings.

I would greatly appreciate your prayers for the sell of our house! Thank you!

Monday, October 17, 2011

My Deep Fried Weekend

This weekend Chris, Natalie and I went to Dallas for a banquet on Saturday night for Chris' sister D'Ann's ministry. We decided we would leave town early and go to the Texas State Fair on Saturday morning before the banquet on Saturday night. We ended up going to the State Fair with my sister "Auntie Allison" and Gigi Shirley and Poppi. We had a blast and I wish Houston had some type of fair in town.

Natalie rode several rides at the Kiddie Park including a animal train and the teacup ride. She loved the train and got to ride it with Auntie Allie. She rode the spinning teacups with Gigi Shirley and I am pretty sure she did not like that one as much. She kept her head buried in Gigi's lap the entire ride. When she came out and I asked her if she liked it she said "Yes" but when I asked her if she wanted to ride it again she said "NO"!

We also were able to go through a little maze like activity called the Little Hands Farm. This was fascinating because it allowed the kiddos to act like a real farmer. Natalie got to plant seeds and grow pretend vegetables, feed the chickens and the cows with corn and other pretend food, milk a pretend cow and process its' milk and even ride a John Deer Tractor (Which she loved!!!!).

It was a great learning experience. I am not sure if Natalie understood all of it but she did learn somethings because on our way home that afternoon she talked about the cows and feeding them.

Now one of the main reasons I so desperately wanted to go to the State Fair was for all of the food. I have been to the Oklahoma State Fair almost every year we lived in Oklahoma but I have not been to the Texas State Fair since I played in The Pride and we were there for the OU/texas game in 2003. I remember so well the Fletcher's Corn Dogs and other fried foods. This year we tried many fried foods including:

Fletcher's Foot Long Corn Dog
Fried Guacamole Bites
Fried Oreos
Fried Cheesecake
There is NOTHING like a true "State Fair" Fletcher's Corn dog. They did not disappoint and it was fabulous. The fried guacamole bites were amazing and I cannot believe more Mexican restaurants around here do not do this. They were basically avocado, salsa and cheeses that they mixed up and then dipped and batter and fried. Wow... THEY WERE YUMMY!!! As usually the fried Oreos were my favorite and I think if we end up frying a Turkey for Thanksgiving, we are going to have to explore making these on our own! They were DELICIOUS!!!!! The fried cheesecake was OK but I am not a fan of cheesecake anyway so the whole idea and taste did not impress me. Allison loved it and wished she would have had more coupons to get another one.

We were unable to locate the Deep Fried Chips and Salsa, Deep Fried Pineapple Upside Down Cake or the Deep Fried Twinkies booths. I have had the fried Twinkies at the Oklahoma State Fair and I was anxious to get one on Saturday but it did not happen. The fried chips and salsa and the Pineapple Upside Down cake were the 2 winners of the annual contest for fried foods for the State Fair so Allison and I really wanted to try them but we did not find them. Maybe next year!!!

Overall, the fair was really exciting and I know Natalie LOVED it! She talked about the animals and cows all afternoon and even a little on our way home to Houston. Of course, she still associates Auntie Allie with "the beach" due to our last excursion when Auntie Allie came to visit but she still loved going to the fair and then having her very first sleepover at Auntie Allie's! Thanks Auntie Allie and Mom and Dad for such a wonderful and memorable weekend!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Music Ministers...

I am a music teacher and music fanatic and so I know this will be hard for you to believe but I LOVE music. I would guess at least 50% of my posts have something to do with music or a song I heard that really touched me or spoke to me. While at orchestra rehearsal on Wednesday night we were preparing for our Christmas Musical and at the very end of rehearsal we sang "He Will Carry You". This has always been a song that has spoken to me and touched me. We have been singing it as our last song for at least 2 months at orchestra/ choir practice and during those 2 months I have listened to the song and prayed as the choir sang for God to carry me through any tough and burden-some trials I happen to be going through. This Wednesday night, in particular, this song really spoke to my heart. As I have mentioned on earlier posts, my family and I have a lot going on right now and we must remember to look to God. One situation in particular I have put at the feet of Jesus and just asked Him to take it.

The song lyrics speak out to the Power of our Lord and Saviour. Whatever your problem might be, look to Jesus and He will carry you!

There is no problem too big
God cannot solve it
There is no mountain too tall
God cannot move it
There is no storm too dark
God cannot solve it
There is no sorrow too deep
God cannot soothe it

If He carried the weight of the world, up on His shoulders
I know my brother that He will carry you
If He carried the weight of the world, up on His shoulders
I know, my sister that He will carry you

He said come unto Me, all who are weary
And I will give you rest

At the end of rehearsal on Wednesday a woman shared that "Music really does minister". These words really stuck out to me as being true. I began to think about the songs that have been important in my life and how singing and playing these songs and really focusing on the words of these songs have pulled me through many tough situations. The woman went on to say that every time we perform "He Will Carry You" she tears up with joy and thankfulness for the Almighty power of the Lord. What a wonderful testimony that was and it is so true and evident in my life as well. Throughout the previous 2 months I have faced new situations and trials that come with new jobs, new locations and moving but through it all, He has carried me and will continue to carry me. This Wednesday in particular I sang and listened to the song and said a prayer of thankfulness for Him carrying me through this far.

This song and idea of "music ministers"leads me to the scripture in His word:
"The Lord your God is in your midst
The Might One will save
He will rejoice over you with gladness
He will quiet you with His love
He will rejoice over you with singing"

Zephaniah 3:17 (NKJV)
These words speak to us that we not only sing in His glory but He "rejoices over us with singing". This draws my mind to a newborn baby and a mother singing over him as he sleeps. God sings over me and he will sing over you too if you let Him.

God is good and He will carry YOU! The song and the scripture say "There is NO problem TOO BIG!" Whatever you might be facing today, GIVE IT TO GOD! Lay it at His feet and let him take it! He will carry you! He will carry you!

God is Good... All the Time!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


So the other day I went to Lifeway to Natalie Grace the new Christmas VeggieTales DVD "Little Drummer Boy". While I was in line to check out I grabbed the new WOW 2012 CD. I saw several songs that I had heard and missed hearing since it seems like the only thing I am allowed to listen to in my car is "B-I-N-G-O". I was really excited to get home and listen to it. I synced it to my iTunes account and then I was able to listen to it on my laptop at school. Yesterday while I was working my room literally day getting stuff done, I started listening to the 2nd CD. I am usually the one who just listens to the first CD for whatever reason. On this CD was a song entitled Stronger by Mandisa. Wow... what a great message:

When the waves are taking you under
Hold on just a little longer
He knows this is gonna make you stronger, stronger

The pain ain't gonna last forever
Things can only get better
Believe me this is gonna make you Stronger

Try to do the best you can
Hold on and let Him hold your hand
Go on and fall into the arms of Jesus

Oh, lift you head, it's gonna end
God is right there
Even when you just cant feel Him
I promise... HE IS THERE!

When the waves are taking you under
Hold on a little longer
He knows this is gonna make you stronger

'Cause if He started this work in your life
He will be faithful to complete, if only you BELIEVE it
He knows how much it hurts
And I'm sure He is going to help you get through this

I listened to this song and just began to tear up. There I was with so much going on in my life right now and feeling completely helpless and buried by the waves of stuff going on right now. So many things I never saw coming and never imagined would be happen to me have happened and I feel so alone. I keep trying to hold my head high and look to Him for help but sometimes it is easy to overlook how much He cares for us and how He puts things into our life to make us STRONGER and make us a better Christian and a better example. I know these situations are making me stronger. Some of the stuff going on in my life right now I have gone through before but obviously I need to get even STRONGER so He puts them in my life again. Other things, I have never faced before and I need His guidance. Either way... He is right there beside me the whole way making me STRONGER.

He can make you STRONGER TOO! Just ask Him!

Stronger by Mandisa

Saturday, October 8, 2011

IPhone Thoughts

So for about 15 months now I have been eligible for a phone upgrade and wanted an IPhone. I wanted one way back when there was the IPhone 3. I watch all my fellow teachers at school and friends get the new and awesome IPhone 4 on the day and week it came out and just suffered through it. I kept saving money for an IPhone and the cost of only having one family income would take my savings to pay for something else.

Finally this summer I went to get an IPhone 4 and the customer service agent at the AT&T store told there was a rumor that Apple was going to get a new IPhone out in the fall. This was in mid-August so I took his thoughts on the rumor and went home. I had waited that long (About 13 months at that time) and I figured I could wait a few more weeks and months. From that moment on, EVERY time I went to the mall I would go to the Apple store and see if they knew anything new. Of course these guys would not even admit there was a new anything coming out. I guess that was part of what Apple wanted was to create a mass hysteria of paranoia for a new IPhone. Of course, at each of these trips, I never got any information and was left frustrated and feeling impatient to get this "new IPhone 5?!?!" I was told it would be launched in early October and then arrive in mid-October.

Earlier this week I got a text from my sister Allison that Apple said they would have the "World Wide Announcement" on Tuesday, October 4. I called Apple and AT&T just as soon as my planning time started on that day. Now I am sure you all know that the IPhone Apple was launching was the "New IPhone 4S" (Almost a twin sister of the already existing IPhone 4).

So I have researched this new IPhone 4S and I am not impressed at all. Basically for the $199 or even $299 that I would pay for a large GB IPhone... I would be getting a bigger screen. I am just not sure I want to spend that money just to have the new thing. There have been times my husband tells me that I "have to have the 'in thing' at the moment and are just paying for a name". I think I will take his constant advice and just get the IPhone 4 and not the new IPhone 4S. I am sure just like the IPhone 3 did when the IPhone 4 came out... the existing IPhone 4 will go down in price. I hope to be blogging and doing all my social networking and what not from my new IPhone 4 in the coming weeks and/or months*.

*- You never know what financial nightmares will come your way... read my previous post if you are curious!
Overall... I think the new IPhone 4S is a bust. I think all of America agrees with me. I do send my thoughts and prayers to Steve Job's family during their loss. Steve Jobs was a genius and he will be missed.

Friday, October 7, 2011

There really is only ONE person you can trust

It's Tuesday of OU/texas week and I see a friend of mine offering OU/texas game tickets on Facebook. I ask her about them and how much they were and some of the other usual questions you would ask. Chris and I call my parents and decide we should go for it. Come to find out my friend did not have the tickets in her hand and was just looking for someone to go with her and then she would go and pay for the tickets. At that point we were not sure if she would even get the tickets so I decided to look elsewhere. I looked on Craigslist and found several options and responded to their ad on Craigslist. On Wednesday morning I got a response from a guy offering to sell his 4 tickets for $500. That would be very cheap price per ticket ($125) and the face value of the cheapest ticket for OU/texas is about $150. I called my parents and they were in so I pursued it.

The seller said he was going out of town and that is why he could not use his tickets. We emailed back and forth and he seemed like a really stand up guy. I mentioned being a school teacher and he said "My wife is a school teacher". He said he was an OU graduate from 1970s and loved OU but could not use his tickets. He wanted to go through Ebay to sell the tickets and then Western Union to pay for the tickets. No red flags came up in my head and I thought Western Union would be safer than paying with a credit card online and even safer than meeting someone and paying cash (You hear horror stories of people meeting at Starbucks and paying their money and then the seller tries to do something to them and what not). Actually, when I called my friend to tell her we were declining her tickets she reinforced this idea in my mind when she said "I always get my OU/texas tickets through Craigslist EVERY year and never go and pick them up. I always pay online or through Western Union. What if that person was going to harm you when you go and pick them up?" She brought up a valid point and I felt better about my situation. Still as I made my way to the bank to send the money through Western Union, I kept pondering the situation and its' possible outcomes. However, the underlying desire and urge to go to another OU/texas game and be able to go with Chris and my DAD was too much. I went ahead and got the cash out and sent the money to London where the guys was going out of town on business.

The seller was supposed to UPS overnight these tickets on Wednesday and I was supposed to get them on Thursday morning. He did not get a tracking number from UPS (Or so he said to me via email) so he was unable to get one to me. Thursday morning passed and still no tickets. I began to get worried but I kept hearing that voice inside my head saying "This is a trust issue... God will take care of you. Don't give into the devil and begin to worry". (If you don't know me... I worry alot and I often times get so wrapped up into the "what ifs" that I forget that God is there to help me and get me through whatever I may be going through at the time.)

The afternoon passed at school and I thought I would call UPS to see if maybe they delivered it to a neighbor or something. The package was not even in their system. Of course without a tracking number they could not totally help me or find the package. I began to really panic and get paranoid. I looked up Ebay's contact phone and called them. They had no record of me purchasing anything from them. I frantically said "No really I have the email confirmation from Ebay right here". The service agent put me on hold and got a supervisor and said "That is not a VALID Ebay email". The supervisor told me I had been scammed and to call the police and Western Union Fraud.

I did just that and I called Western Union Fraud. Of course, the money was picked up in London on Thursday morning (London time) and since it HAD BEEN PICKED UP... Western Union could not replace the $500. They told me to contact the FBI, my Attorney General and State police. (I now was crying and frantically trying to write all this down all while feeling I am in a CSI case or something). I called my bank to see if they would cover the $500 or if I had any protection against something like this and their response was "Well, since it is Western Union and you paid cash, we don't have any coverage or protection." Now the good news in all of this is that he just took $500. Of course, I will never see that $500 again and that really stings but he DID NOT get into my bank account or anything else.

I cried and cried and called my mom needed a "Mommy moment" as I like to call them and she was a big help and comfort. But this just goes to show that no matter what, there really is just ONE PERSON YOU CAN TRUST. This person is God. God will never leave you or forsake you. God will never scam you or trick you. In fact in my time of trouble yesterday afternoon, I heard God speak to me and say "Kellie, it is just $500." Now Chris on the other hand... he said no such thing! There are many lessons we learn in life (Trust me... I have learned MANY A LESSON); some are emotionally hard, some are physically hard and some are financially hard. I thank God that this lesson was learned when both CHRIS and I have jobs and we were not broke and destitute like we were just 3 months ago.

If you are facing a lesson in life right now and you need guidance and help... Look to God. He can help you and protect you. He is your coverage and protection. He will save you. I a drawn to the hymn "Only Trust Him" and its words:
My Jesus shed His precious blood
Rich blessings to bestow
Plunge now into the Crimson flood
That washes white as snow
Only Trust Him
Only Trust Him
Only Trust Him now...
He will Save you
He will Save you
He will Save you now!

Will you turn to him in your time of need? Will you trust Him?

I thank you Lord for being my coverage and protection in times of need and hurt. Thank you for saving ME and washing me white as snow. Please guide me and protect me. I love You, Lord.

May God bless you and your family!

Monday, October 3, 2011

A new day has come

Well... I had a TERRIBLE weekend and an even worse previous week. I was completly depressed and to make it even better... I was kicked while I was down. I thought about crying about it and getting myself even more depressed but I then decided I would try to just hold my head high. I went to bed early last night and spent some much needed TLC with God. I woke up this morning with a new attitude and outlook on all of my situations. I got up and went for a jog as well as spent time reflecting on my pity party and my terrible weekend and how I could work to make all of these situations better.

Today at school was a wonderful day and I got "Back to the Basics" and taught a lesson that I created while at Grove and my kids loved it. We worked on the same material as in the curriculum but we worked on it in a unique and fun way. The faces of these kids lit up like I had never seen. I got more "Wow... we LOVED music" and more hugs than I have all school year. For a moment today, I felt as if I was achieving my career goal at Booker of helping these kids LOVE music the way I LOVE music.

Overall... It was a good day! God is good and God is in control. I know he has a plan for me and I know he is looking out for me and all of my pressing situations. Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Grass is ALWAYS Greener

For as long as I can remember I have wanted to move back to Texas and teach band. After graduating from high school I went on to attend OU and get my Music Education degree and teach band. I got a job at Bowlegs Public School as the K-12 music and band teacher. It was a hard job and I did not like it. I remember in early October calling my High School band director and wanting to quit. Luckily, he talked me out of it. I struggled the whole year but I was engaged to be married and I had something to occupy my time. After leaving that job and taking the job at Shawnee, I discovered that I learned alot from Bowlegs and should have cared more and given more of myself to that school and its students.

After that, I got a job teaching K-8 music and band at Grove in Shawnee. I liked it alot the entire time I was there. I knew it was a "dream" type of a job and even thought I always dreamt of moving back to Texas and teaching band I knew I would not be able to find a job quite like Grove ever again.

In October 2009 when Chris was laid off from his job I could see my dream drifting away. About 20 months later, after he had changed careers, he got a teaching job in Texas. I thought the mother ship was calling me home. The moment I had been dreaming of was finally here. I was going to teach band in Texas and start my wonderful dreamed of career path. All of the sudden the brakes are thrown on...Well Chris' job is a 9th grade Math job and a baseball coach. As soon as he decided to take that path and that particular job I realized for the sake of our family and everyone involved in this situation (ie. his parents too since they are who we are living with and they are taking care of Natalie), I should look for a less time-consuming job. I also thought a less time-consuming job would also allow Chris and I to continue our family and get Natalie a little playmate which is about perfect timing for our "family plan" anyway. That is when I rerouted my search towards Elementary music. I got the K-5 Music job at in Spring and I am very excited about it but I now wonder if I will ever be able to get back into band.

So here I sit with a job I LIKE but not love. I don't have my own house or anything that goes along with it. All of my belongings are in a garage and collecting dust. I don't see my husband very often and when we do we both (meaning ME TOO!!!) are tired and irritable. Oh and just like last time... still no playmate. It is like I cannot win for losing. I miss Shawnee... I miss Grove... I miss my old life. This just proves the old saying "The Grass is always greener on the other side".

But mom ALWAYS told me to "bloom where you are planted". Chris and I have planted ourselves down here and I am going to try to make the best of it. This coming week I am trying a new path in my music classes and hopefully they will settle down and get under control. I am also going to teach recorders this week which I never did at Grove but I figure they are the closest thing to band. I am also going to join the church we have been attending the past few months this Sunday. This is something I know Chris wants to do and I think it will be good for us. Overall, I am going to try to make the best out of this situation. I guess I just needed a pity-party. We are all allowed a few of these sometimes right?!?!?

Thanks for understanding...