Thursday, May 27, 2010

Prayer for the Hinnant Family

Exactly ten years ago, Melissa (now Hinnant) spent the summer under the Graves roof.

It is a summer for many reasons I will always cherish.

Melissa is a beautiful example of a Godly woman. That summer, one of the greatest things I learned from Melissa imparted is faith and humble confidence.

It has been such a joy watching her walk in the different giftings God has given her, spread her wings and fly to Austin, and marry a wonderful man, Rick.

The last year she has walked through the valley of the shadow of death and I would be so blessed if you would read her story for yourself and pray for their family.

I love you, Melissa. Your unwavering faith and confidence in the Lord's goodness amazes me. We are on our knees for you and Rick.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Happy Birthday to the man who doesn't like birthdays

I love birthdays. I love making a big deal. I think its your "day." Do it up right and do it up big. Especially for my husband.

He loathes that idea. It taken me awhile to realize he's serious.

The first year we were married, I planned a get together with all of his work buddies. I went up to his work with his favorite cake, had lots of presents, had signs up around our apartment, and told everyone in my contacts and email that it was HIS day!

He was miserable.

This year I did not remind a single person and its killing me. I literally have wanted to tell so many people, wanted to put it on my facebook, and make a big to-do about it but am trying to abide by his wishes.

It just goes against every fiber of my being. I mean, seriously, who doesn't like a little birthday celebration, especially when I am so mad about him. For years, I have told myself that he secretly loves it and one day he would be thankful for my over celebratory self.

That hasn't happened yet.

So this birthday blog is for you, babe, and hoping that no one calls or texts you today b/c that's apparently what you want.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the most sacrificial, loving, servant-hearted, kind, gentle, and sexiest man I know. My heart is yours alone and for you forever.

Here's to your break out 32nd year

Photo courtesy of Nicole Graves Photography Inc. :)
*** As a side note: My man asked me to clarify that "loathe" is a strong word. He just doesn't like a big deal. We have had a nice, quiet evening, made his favorite meal and have "other" plans for later and I didn't get "the look" all day. I'll call this one a success!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Potty Training Party

Our little man has been ready to wear big kid underwear for some time, but I was trying to wait for life to settle down a little bit before we tackled that giant.

Last Monday, we threw the diapers away and began the journey into potty land.

He had 12 accidents Monday morning, just him learning to hold it and finding out what that sensation feels like, then being able to communicate it to us. Around lunch time, the ranch foreman, Magdaleno, came to our house to pick something up. After he left, I leaned down to Isaac and said, "Magdaleno wears big boy underwear AND he pee pees in the potty." He looked at me with big eyes and in shear wonderment and said, "Whoa." After that it clicked!

The first time he actually went pee pee in the potty. He flushed the toilet and declared, "Bye bye pee pee! See you at the horse show!"

Then, we had a man, Mr. Magee, doing work out at our house. We had never met him before but within 2 minutes of him being in the house, Isaac was showing him his underwear. Then, he said, "Mr. 'Gee, I have to go pee pee. Stay right here. Be right back." Luckily, Mr. Magee has five children and this wasn't his first rodeo.

While, the pee pee part clicked, the poo poo part was freakin' him out a little bit. He has told me several times this week (when he knows he needs to go, is sitting on the toilet and there's no action)- "mama, there's a hammer stuck in my hiney."
Overall, he has done GREAT! Mom on the other hand has been a little cranky and emotional. There's nothing like making the restroom your second home in order to bring out your "special self!"

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


In Normangee there is a large Mexican community. There is so much to appreciate about their culture: family first (big families at that), lots of love, and a never ending supply of food.

We were invited to a birthday party at 4 p.m. It took us awhile to learn that when the party "starts" that what they really mean is for you start getting ready then. We planned to be fashionably late yet arrived at 4:15 (My husband has trained me to be on time for too long). While the kids played, I joined the clamor in the kitchen of beautiful, voluptuous Mexican women creating a feast for kings. Although I could only catch a word here and there, the love in the home was undeniable.

The whole community turned out to celebrate the birthday girl's big day. One tradition in their culture is that if you see a baby that you think is cute that its bad to not hold the baby. Elyana was passed around the entire time I was there. It was like a mommy vacation :)

They had THREE pinatas. After the first one was broken, the kids went running and Isaac is standing in the back wondering- "what in the world are these kids doing?"

The birthday girl going after it!

Of course this is my boy's favorite part.
We loved the mission field the Lord has placed us in. Truly, to Isaac, these are "his people." He feels totally at home and is a completely different kid. If there were ever a light-skinned missionary kid (M.K.), it is he.

Monday, May 10, 2010

That's a wrap

Since our church is in College Station, the ebbs and flows of church life are directly related to the school year. Finals ended last week at Texas A & M and we said a summer good bye to many we hold dear. Life will take a new pace for the summer and although we will miss their zeal, the hot days and cool pool come with great anticipation.

As we have wrapped up this spring semester, here's just a little taste of what we have been up to.

The kids and I have really enjoyed going to the nursing home to visit "the wise people." One of the other moms who we go with wrote a hilarious rendition of some of her 3 year olds tales of the nursing home.
We also did our first pre-marital counseling! This is also another result of living in a college town, once you've been married for four years and are practically 30 then you are deemed OLD. Thus, qualified for engagement counseling. Here are the precious love birds...

My beloved husband is leading a life group at these precious people's home.

Earlier in the semester we were attending this couple's small group and we miss them (everyone) so!

And look at these beauties...

What a joy and privilege it has been to meet with these college girls on a weekly basis. Their passion and hunger for the Lord is such a beautiful thing to behold. I adore you two and can't wait to see all the Lord has in store for next year.
So folks, that's a wrap. Bring on the bathing suits, chemical free sunscreen, and electric bills :)

Me & My Girl

So, my mommy mode of operation: we rarely part one another until they are about 6 or 7 months (dates are pretty much the only exception).

Today, my roots were looking b-a-d and so me and my girl went to the salon. She was a little doll. She acted like she was born for all that chatter, blow drying and hours spent doing little of anything. Before I know it, she'll be...Oh, I can't even bare to say it.

I love you little thing and can't wait to do more girly things together.

Isn't this face priceless- my translation "What in the world has mom done to her hair?!?"

Monday, May 3, 2010

In the stillness

Today was full, like lets see how much peanut butter you can possibly fit on your bread kind of a day. Is anyone else as guilty as I am for putting large helpings of PB on your your PB&J? Makes you want a large glass of water to wash it all down!

Lots of wonderful people (and to-dos) but I just needed a tall glass of water to wash it all down.

As it was coming to a close, I stepped outside to find this beauty without even a raindrop.

Then, the house got quiet: guests fed and happy, one adventurous boy to bed, daddy finishing up some last minute details, the lights dimmed and the world got quiet. I got to rock this sweet girl for a few precious minutes before she headed off to bed.

"He calmed the storm to a whisper and stilled the waves. What a blessing was that stillness as he brought them safely into harbor! Let them praise the Lord for His great love and for the wonderful things He has done for them." Psalm 107:29-31

Cool Like Dad