Yep, Still Got It

You might remember this post where I discussed my greatest achievement to date.

Becoming a regular at Starbucks.

You know you’re jealous of the people who have “the usual” or get a “Hey Jack!” when they walk into a restaurant.

Well, be jealous because that person is also ME!

I don’t think I’ve been to my Kroger Starbucks in many many moons…probably not since February. All due to a small little thing called morning sickness. But once I got over that I think I just forgot how good caramel macchiatos really were. Sure, I’ve had the occasional drink but always at other locations.

So I promise there’s a point to this.

I decided to go by this morning and who was working, but my favorite barista. Thinking she surely had forgotten me, I ordered my drink. She looked up and said, “ooh you’re changing it up today??”

That’s when I knew I’d left my mark. The “half-decaf” apparently threw her off. Then we had a little chat about my due date and babies and hot summers and off I went.

Yes folks, I’m living the high life.

I wonder how many times I have to go before they’ll just let me cut in line. Or have my drink ready as I walk in the door…

Maybe I will get a “Send Mary to Starbucks” blinkie for the side of my blog where people can click to donate. That way I can really put 100% effort into this little experiment.

Hilarious

Maybe this kid is getting to me, but I find certain things hysterical nowadays. Like this commercial. I laugh out loud everytime I see it. I also keep asking Seth what he’d think if I told him I was from the future. For some reason this cracks me up. I’m pretty sure he’s thisclose to having me committed.

Happy Wednesday :)

Faith & Prayer

For those of you wondering what in the world is going on with Baby Noah…check out his story here!

What a wonderful testimony to God’s unfailing love for us. He is our Great Protector and Healer. Please continue to pray that Noah stays comfortable, with a normal heartbeat, in his mama’s belly as long as possible. Well, not past December that is :)

Do you know how much I’d love for there to be a bench seat in my fridge right now??

I cannot cool down.

I think we’re almost at the point where my husband thinks I’m a psycho. It’s very Father of the Bride: Part 2 in our household. You know the scene…Nina & Annie are laying around the house dying of heat…and poor George Banks is in his winter coat and gloves. The other day I walked in the house to find the thermostat on 77.

Excuse me??

Maybe 2 months ago this would’ve been ok. But I can assure you it’s most certainly NOT an acceptable temperature anymore. I feel like all the fans are on full-blast…and clothes make it all the more unbearable.

All the while, Seth is laying on the couch with a blanket and pj pants.

You know how much I’d love to wake up to some snow-capped mountains??

Also, if you happen to be in the frozen food aisle at the grocery (shopping, not cooling off) and you think the new Weight Watchers meals look appealing because of their new box designs…don’t be fooled. They’re still bland microwaved meals. I was blindsided by their new turkey cutlets with potatoes and some sort of apple, cranberry, butternut squash medley. Like Thanksgiving in a box, right?

Wrong.

Good thing I bring about 5 additional sides to lunch or else I’d be up a creek.

It’s Not Fair!

I loved the Proverbs 31 Devotional I received today. Because how many times in life do we say, “It’s NOT fair!”?? I am so guilty of this.

-It’s not fair that life isn’t always easy
-It’s not fair that things don’t always go my way
-It’s not fair that God may have a different plan for me (and He won’t tell me what is is yet!)
-It’s not fair that everything always seems to work out for him/her
-It’s not fair that ___________.

And on and on and on and on!

Hello, my name is Mary. Welcome to my pity party!

It’s mostly rooted in selfish human desires. And my inability to sometimes comprehend God’s deep love for me. God has a plan for each of us that sometimes takes just sitting back and letting what we think “isn’t fair” happen in order to reveal His much greater purpose. And when you think of it that way, I’m a little relieved He’s in charge of my life…not me. Because that would be a train wreck!

So think about what Lysa has to say today…

Temptation

23 Jul 2009

Lysa TerKeurst

“The mouth of the righteous man utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks what is just. The law of God is on his heart; his feet do not slip.” Psalm 37:30-31 (NIV)

I think I’ve discovered one of the biggest tricks Satan plays on us girls to get us to give into temptation.

“It’s not fair.” It’s not fair that others seem permitted to have this, do this, act this way.

It’s not fair that God won’t let us eat of the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden… one little bite wouldn’t be so bad, right?

It’s not fair I can’t buy that new thing I really want… just a little debt wouldn’t be so bad, right?

It’s not fair that I have this body that I have to watch everything I eat when that girl eats junk and stays a size 4… one piece of cheesecake wouldn’t be so bad, right?

It’s not fair that we can’t have sex before we’re married when we’re so in love… experimenting one time wouldn’t be so bad, right?

Our flesh buys right into Satan’s lie that it’s not fair for things to be withheld from us. So we bite into the forbidden fruit and allow Satan to write ‘shame’ across our heart. Once you taste the forbidden fruit, you will crave it worse than you craved it before, giving temptation more and more power. And given enough power, temptation will start to consume our thoughts, redirect our actions, and demand our worship. Temptation doesn’t take kindly to be starved.

I don’t know what tempts you today. But, I do personally know this vicious cycle and I’m here to give you hope it is possible to get past it. Just typing that sentence gives me chills. Just a couple of months ago, I wondered if that would ever be true for me.

I’ve been on a very strict eating plan since April. Part of this plan is no sugar. Which doesn’t sound so bad until you realize sugar is in just about everything we enjoy eating. Breads, pasta, potatoes, rice and not to mention all things bakery-licious.

It has been challenging at times that’s for sure. But while I was on vacation recently and watching others enjoys an abundance of treats, I started to have a little pity party and those words crept into my brain: “It’s not fair.” In that instant, I squirmed in my chair and thought, “I’ll just take one little bite… maybe two… I’ve been so good… this is vacation… everyone else is indulging … OH MY STARS WHAT ARE YOU DOING LYSA!”

In that moment of extreme temptation, I realized me having a pity party was a clue I was relying on my own strength… a strength that has failed me before and would fail me again. I had to grab hold of God’s strength and the only way to do that was to invite His power into my situation. I mentally gave God control of the situation by reciting truths I’d been banking up in my heart. “I’m more than a conqueror.” “Lead us not into temptation but DELIVER us from the evil one.” “The law of God is in his heart; his feet do not slip.”

Soon, it was time to get up from the dinner table and walk back to our room. And I’ve never felt so empowered in my life. Had I said yes that first night of our vacation, there would have been more compromises in future meals. Compromise built upon compromise equals failure. Instead, resisting temptation allowed promise upon promise to be built up in my heart, which equals Holy Spirit empowerment!

Like I said, I don’t know what you might be struggling with today but I can assure you God is fair and just. There is a reason we must face this. The struggle may be painful in the moment but it is working out something magnificent within us. As James 1 promises, “This testing of your faith develops perseverance and perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature, complete, not lacking anything.”

Oh sweet sister, that is the cry of my soul. My taste buds lie as they make empty claims to satisfy me. Only persevering with God will make me truly full, complete, not lacking anything. Press on sister. Press on.

Dear Lord, help me to see my sacrifice in light of Your truth. The truth is, this sacrifice is a necessary part of me seeking You – the only true fulfillment and satisfaction of my body, mind and soul. Give me strength, Lord. Remind me to rely on Your truth and Your Spirit to empower me moment by moment. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Bare Necessities

So I realize there are several things I’ve been meaning to discuss that have somehow been moved to the backburner.

1) WD-40

Have we ever discussed how FABULOUS this product is?? According to their website, it has more than 2,000 uses! Silly me, I thought it only fixed squeaky doors. Did you know it can remove gum, sticker, and crayon marks? It can also remove nailpolish, grime, clean piano keys, and remove those stubborn temporary tatoos! Did you know they make a handy WD-40 travel stick (similar to the Tide stick…another wonder)???

Simply amazing.

This weekend I had Seth get out our trusty ol’ friend because the squeak on the pantry door was driving me nuts. After I saw how quickly it worked, I jumped up and started opening and closing all the doors/cabinets in the house. What a fun game!!! Should I mention it was Friday night and we were oiling the doors? How embarassing. But satisfying all the same. Except now we can’t hear when Tucker opens the pantry door. Because as I’ve mentioned, the pantry is his second home.

2) Liam Neeson v. Jack Bauer

We finally watched Taken this weekend. My sister and boss have been bugging me for months about this movie. Now I know why.

Liam Neeson makes Jack Bauer look like a pansy. There’s just no other way to say it. Let’s just say that if I’m ever kidnapped…I hope he’s the one they send looking for me!!

3) Espresso

I’ve always wondered why I can’t find bags of espresso in the coffee aisle at HEB. I just thought it was too high-class to be sitting on a grocery shelf. Little did I know that espresso is simply finely-ground coffee! Or, according to Wikipedia, espresso is a concentrated coffee beverage brewed by forcing hot water under pressure through finely ground coffee. Amazing.

No wonder my caramel macchiatos cost an arm & a leg. Another reason why I need an espresso machine at home. And now I’ll save tons of money because I can just buy coffee beans instead of continuing on my quest for bagged espresso.

Thank you Cathy for enlightening me!

(Don’t worry Seth…the espresso machine is last on my list right now. But maybe one day???)

4) So You Think You Can Dance

Goodness. They just keep getting better. I love Jeanine! She is a gorgeous dancer. But I love Kayla too. And sweet Randi just had the sweetest smile so we were sad to see her go. But I definitely think Brandon and Ade are our 2 top guys and J&K are the top 2 girls. Although they’re all so stinkin’ good it really doesn’t matter at this point. Let’s all just high-five to the fact that Kupono and his homeless man wardrobe are gone gone gone!

Is it too much to take Jake to a NKOTB concert and the SYTYCD tour all in the same year?

5) Pedicures. The good kind.

As most of you ladies know, you can’t have a good pedicure without some quality scraping. Unfortunately, most nail salons out there have ceased using the aforementioned scraping technique because of sanitary reasons. Instead, they have resorted to simply scrubbing your foot, which, we all know works like crap.

Imagine my DELIGHT when Cathy took me to French Nails in downtown Houston (well, what I consider downtown at least. Really more like I10 and the Beltway.) Not only did they have the water hot and ready for my dainty toes (too often they try to pass lukewarm as acceptable at these places) but they most definitely used the foot scraper!!!

I don’t care if they’re sanitary or not. They get the job done. I even think I might consider driving that far more often if I can ensure my feet are as soft as they are today. Worth the extra $2 I added on the tip. Why can’t more nail people use them as an example? Break the health code, I don’t care!!!

Whew. That was a lot in a little amount of time. NOW we’re officially caught up.

7 Months

Really?? SEVEN MONTHS?! This. is. insane.

Want me to help you put it in perspective?

Our child will be here in 9-12 weeks. That’s about 85 days. Or about 4,000 consecutive episodes of Saved by the Bell. Or two 6-week report cards in school.

I could go on, but these calculations are making my head hurt.

So here I am. I’m always shocked when I look at these pictures. Because I really feel like I look different in person then on camera. Especially because a co-worker just realized LAST WEEK that I was expecting. I mean, come on. Why else do you think I hang out in the kitchen so much?? Seeing as I already feel large and in charge…I can’t imagine how I’ll feel next month.

I even went back through the old pictures and found one from April. This is when I was about 13 weeks pregnant I think…

Uhhh….yeah. Big difference!

I go back to the doctor tomorrow for my check up. I’m going with lots of questions. Mostly because we think I’ve been having some contractions. I’m sure, if anything, they’ve been Braxton Hicks but it is a weeeeeeiiiird feeling. I talked to the dr. last week and they weren’t really concerned and just told me to stay hydrated. Hm ok. If they’re not worried, I’m not worried I guess. But how strange to sit there and watch my stomach tighten up and to even think about “timing” anything.

Are we really ready for this?!

And if you’ve seen 2 really good looking pregnant women walking around the neighborhood in the mornings…don’t worry…it’s just me and Georgia. The price we women pay to stay fit. Although our pace has slowed a bit…but I am determined to walk until the bitter end. It’s not exactly comfortable but I know it will be worth it later.

That’s what they say at least.

So hello, third trimester! You used to seem so far away…

By this week, your baby weighs two and a quarter pounds (like a Chinese cabbage) and measures 14.8 inches from the top of his head to his heels. He can blink his eyes, which now sport lashes. With his eyesight developing, he may be able to see the light that filters in through your womb. He’s also developing billions of neurons in his brain and adding more body fat in preparation for life in the outside world.