The Passion...

We just got back from a few days in Atlanta and posting about any of that today seems trivial and irrelevant. However, I will mention that Ladybug has been found. This little lamb has been found safe and alive and is in the process of being returned to her mother. Praise the Lord!

During Easter, we spend so much time focusing on the resurrection which is a wonderful thing and the reason for our hope, but sometimes we gloss right over the pain and suffering of the cross. The blood that was shed for my sake. Today is Good Friday and honestly, right off the top of my head, I don't really remember why it's called "Good Friday". Today represents the day that my Lord and Savior struggled to carry that heavy wooden cross up to Golgotha (Calvary). Today represents the day that He was whipped and beaten beyond recognition. Today represents the day that those spikes were driven through His hands and feet and He hung on the cross with the weight of my sin on His chest....while His mother, Mary, looked upon Him with tears stinging her eyes.

Can you even imagine it?

Think about the pain we feel when we get a splinter in our hand? And if you're like me, the thought of my child feeling any pain, physically or emotionally, cripples me to a puddle of tears.

But Jesus endured every lash of that whip, the pain of the cross--His bones crushing from the weight and position of the cross...He was thinking of me...and He was thinking of you.

If you've never seen The Passion of the Christ, today would be a good day to watch it and be reminded of what the Lord has done for you. I know it's "Hollywood", but it really brought the story "to life" for me. I literally sobbed in the movie theater when it first was released and it probably doesn't hold a candle to the pain and suffering Jesus really went through that day.

So I urge you today to focus on the cross.

"But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed." Isaiah 53:5 (NIV)

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Yes, I'm part Irish and Italian---which you know is not the best of combinations---we're stubborn and we have tempers! There won't be much kissing going on today! I've been sick in the bed since I got home from work on Friday...literally. (Sorry Dianne for missing your call!)

I started feeling bad Wednesday and it just progressively got worse, but I made it through the work week and then crashed this weekend. I was supposed to show houses Saturday, but could barely talk, couldn't breathe and just felt plain miserable by the time Friday night rolled around. I literally stayed in the bed all weekend and drank Alka Seltzer Plus and took Tylenol Allergy and Sinus medicine. I'm feeling better this morning, but still not 100%.

I hope you all have a wonderful week. We're on Spring Break this week, so I'm enjoying some much needed rest!

A Mother's worst nightmare...

Please stop by Cynthia's blog, "Walking On". She needs our prayers--her whole family needs our prayers. Let's help get the word out on this missing 13 year old girl and pray that "Ladybug" will be found safe.

Aunt Bee, please pass the tissue!

Sometimes it's not until I slow down that the stress, worry and emotions catch up with me. I can stay busy and keep all my "plates" spinning in the air and not have too much extra time to think...but that all caught up with me this weekend.

Friday after I got off work at the school, I went and showed houses until dark. Saturday, I was out doing more of the same (in the cold!) and my young couple finally decided to write an offer on a home we had seen the night before. After a busy afternoon, hubby and I ate dinner out and then came home to just relax and do nothing! I got my jammies on, turned my electric blanket on "high" and settled in to find something good on t.v. Have you ever tried to find something good on t.v. on a Saturday night? Gee whiz! There is nothing good on! What's the deal? Does everybody go out on Saturdays?

Anyway, we can always find something decent on TV Land (classic tv), and such was the case as Andy Griffith was on. It was one of my favorite episodes--where Opie accidentally kills the mama bird with his slingshot which leaves the baby birds with no one to feed them. After Andy opens Opie's window and makes him listen to those baby birds crying all night (ahhh, such torture Pa!), Opie decides he's going to care for the baby birds. Fast forward--the birds are healthy and out-growing the cage and Andy is telling Opie he needs to set them free. Opie asks his Pa, "but how do I know I've done all the right things and they'll be able to fly?"

FLOODGATES OPEN! Oh my word! I started bawling my eyes out (and if truth be told, I've got a puddle of tears on my desk right now just typing this). I've seen that episode a million times, but this time it was different. I was Opie--I could so relate to that sweet little guy not wanting to open the door to the cage. But he finally does and the birds fly away singing up to the trees.

And Opie says, "The cage sure looks awful empty, don't it Pa?"

To which Andy replies, "Yes son, it sure does...But don't the trees seem nice and full?"

New look and wishful thinking...

I decided to give my blog a more beachy look tonight...thought it might make me visit more! What do you think? Can you see the water background? Ahhhh, so relaxing...wish I were there!

Search and Rescue...

Call off the dogs! I've been located! After receiving the "B Club Infraction Notice" this morning, I decided it was time to check in with my girls before the next knock at my door was either someone with the Department of Homeland Security, or Tonja with a pail of tar and the rest of the B Club girls with bags of feathers! Oh, it's so nice to be reminded how loved I am, even if it's in a 'kick your butt' sorta way! Seriously, thanks girls for being concerned and missing me!

It's more of the same around here, except with an elevated stress level that's off the charts! I'm still working hard at the school during the week, real estate has picked up on the weekends since I'm working with several clients, and I'm chin deep in financial aid forms, scholarship applications, essays, etc. not to mention the trip to Disney that I'm in charge of for our school's band that's coming up next month.

Almost every evening, I'm working on paperwork from the time we finish dinner until it's time to go to bed. I spend hours on the internet finding scholarships, pouring over information on the UCF web site trying to make sure I've completed items on their "to do" list; staying on Zack to make sure he's writing his essays in a timely manner; responding to about a dozen or so parent emails with tons of questions about the band trip; updating the band blog so I can cut down on my parent emails; and occasionally doing a load of laundry or two. Most of the time I'm so tired, I can't even begin to form two sentences to blog about.

And then the tornado that blew through here two weeks ago puts all my "stuff" into perspective. There were several families in our church that lost their entire homes along with a lengthy list of those that received major damage. Zack was supposed to go to work that afternoon at 3:00 p.m. which was right when the tornado hit the very same exit where he works. Just a mile or two down the road from his job, there was complete devastation. Needless to say, he didn't go to work since we were "hunkered down" under a tornado warning and the mayor had enforced an immediate curfew. Thankfully, there was no damage in our area. A few days later, we rode through the worst hit subdivision which is beyond any description I could give--the pictures don't even do it justice, but I'm posting one that sums up what's important...

I'll leave you on a much happier note---our school's Drama department performed "The Scarlet Pimpernel" 4 nights last week/weekend. Zack played "Coupeau" and even sang a solo! Hello! I was so impressed and proud! I didn't know he had it in 'em! It was great! After seeing it every time (we had to be there to open the coffee shop during intermission), I am so crazy about the music! I had never heard it before, and being the literary ding-a-ling that I am, had never heard the story before either. That's Zack, the skinnier soldier...

Zack sitting at the table and his (real-life) girlfriend, Christy, with her arms around him...

Guess I've been living under a rock. A big, heavy paperwork rock. Now I know why paper always beats out rock in "rock--paper--scissors".
Oh, the weight...gotta go try to dig out.
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