Thursday, July 24, 2008

Fun Times Had & Fun Times To Come!

Gosh, I've had a wonderful week, spending my evenings with some great girls! I got to meet up with Brooke McClinton at one of my all-time faves...Panera Bread. I had a yummy time of catching up with my sweet friend over Panera's delicious Garden Vegetable Soup and their new Tomato & Fresh Mozzarella Salad over Focaccia bread! I highly recommend both selections!! "Thank you for sharing your evening with me, Brooke! I really enjoyed our relaxed 'session' of catching up!" :)
Wednesday night, I was treated to an evening of fun with another great girlfriend Cori Dillon and her 15-month-year-old Daniel! We caught up on the last several months of our busy lives, while playing with Baby Daniel, feeding him, bathing him, reading to him and eventually tucking him in.
Isn't he so handsome!

Mommy is so proud of her big boy!!

Daniel is also very much in awe of Mommy!

Gosh, he looks just like Daddy, except for that sweet signature "Cori" dimple in his chin! :)
What a cute little man!

"Cori! I love you!!!! Thank you so much for letting me live an evening with you and your sweet family!! I also enjoyed catching up with 'Big Daniel'! Y'all are wonderful! Such encouragers!"

Tonight, I went to my weekly Girls' Study of Tim Keller's The Reason For God. A group of us girls from Redeemer Community Church started up this weekly study time so that we could get to know each other, as well as be in some type of study that would tie us back to the Word of God. So far, I really appreciate the book, and I love the girls I've gotten to know! (I wish I had a picture of our group!!)

On a personal, pregnancy-related note, we approached week 13 yesterday! I feel great and am eating...well, too much! :) Maybe not really, but my appetite has sure increased! I got home last night from Cori's house at 9:00 and ate a big ole bowl of homemade vanilla ice cream, but I so wanted a muffin or something "cakey." I made muffins! Banana nut muffins! I ate two very large ones with way too much butter and maple syrup! :) Does that sound gross? Well, it was yummy to me! Of course, I went to bed way too full!

Today, I was absolutely craving RED MEAT! I was driving and just praying, "Lord, what would be a healthy choice red meat that would really satisfy this craving?" Well, I went to the grocery store and picked up a big ole serving of the deli's turnip greens, then marched over to the soup and cracker aisles for something chunky and meaty and salty! I ended up eating Chicken & Sausage Gumbo Soup with traditional, salty Triscuits! It was yummy, and I guess I was craving the turnip greens for the iron??? Anyway, I was completely stuffed, as I ate the whole TWO-serving can of soup and way too many crackers! I went home, slept for TWO hours and got up to another can of soup...Beef Vegetable Soup with lots of crunchy French Bread...YUM!

Pregnancy is definitely interesting! :) It's fun, for sure, but sometimes I just have to 'blame pregnancy' for anything out of the typical "Shireen Ordinary." :) I am excited and we definitely hope to find out the gender of this child just as soon as possible!! Woohoo!!!

An update on Russell:
Russell presented the idea of my driving up to Anniston to spend Saturday night through early Sunday morning with him. We prayed about it through last weekend and the beginning of this week, asking the Lord to show us what would be best. In the past, those mid-way visits have been pretty hard on me because I get all excited to see Russell and then he's gone, and it just really messes with my emotions. When he initially introduced the idea, he was so sweet and sensitive to us praying through it and making sure we did what would be good for my heart. I've just been praying that the Lord would make His plan for our Saturday night very clear through open and closed doors. Last night, Russell called me with the fun news that he's reserved a hotel room for us! We were both so excited to have some good, quality time together. Then, he called me tonight and sweetly let me know that his unit is under lock-down, another military training exercise, through the weekend, so it won't work out, after all. My immediate response: "Praise the Lord! You can't get better clarity than a closed door from the military!" :) So, although I would have loved to share that evening with Russell, he and I are confident in the Lord's plan, and I genuinely look forward to whatever HE works out for my Saturday afternoon/evening, which I had obviously set aside for this trip. I'm not worried...I'm excited, praising HIM with all my heart!

You can continue to pray for us....ONLY 8 more days, and we can totally do that with the Lord's grace!! Russell asked that I pray for his relationships and communication with fellow leaders through the remainder of their time together. So, y'all can join me in that. I'm praying that the Lord would continue to have favor over Russell with these men/women and in all situations, that God would allow his heart and mind to overflow with His perfect peace and that Russell would remain steadfast in our Savior so that he experiences joy and the Hand of God even in the most difficult of circumstances.

Thank you all for your friendship, for your constant encouragement, and know that, as you pray, we are genuinely at peace and thankful.


Lindsey said...

I love Panera Bread! I wish we had one in Dothan.
I also like obvious signs from the Lord, b/c I am sometimes not good at discerning the subtle ones. :)
I know it's totally different, but your stories of being apart make me think a/b when I was in school in Tuscaloosa and Jeremy lived here. We might see each other every other weekend, or it might be a month depending on what we had to do. It was not fun. And I remember being so upset when our weekends together were over. I would cry all of Sunday afternoon and long for the days when I would graduate and we can get married. Four years apart like that was a long time! (we only met and dated in the same town 6 months before I moved to Tuscaloosa!)
Ok, well I did not mean to type so much and I hope I didn't bore you. But basically I was saying I somewhat know how you feel.

Megan said...

I made your Spinach Calzones and the Tiramisu Surprise Delight last night for supper. We entertained six other people for dinner, and your recipes were a hit with everyone! Thanks for sharing your favorites!!!!
Have a great day!