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Here I am again!!

August 13, 2011 Leave a comment

Okay, I have switched services from Typepad to WordPress to save a few $$ every month.  I realized that I hadn’t posted anything in over two years yet I was still paying for Typepad.  I loved Typepad and would still be there had they offered a free alternative.  So here I am now.  Maybe I will write more.  But even if I don’t, it doesn’t matter.  It is free!!!

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Categories: Uncategorized

Weight loss or way lost?

January 14, 2004 1 comment

We are both getting older. You know how I know? Well, we can just look in the mirror and, sadly, that tells the tale. With the gray hairs and the “middle-aged spread”. And let me tell you…the middle age spread hasn’t been good to this boy. Middle aged spread really doesn’t describe what has happened to me. I can’t really blame it on anyone but myself. I tried once but it didn’t work. No… it is totally my fault. But now Rhonda and I are going to change all of that.

Anyone who knows us know that we have dibbled and dabbled with different diets and diet programs over the years. Some have actually worked temporarily. I guess the key is to change your behavior. That is a big part of what we missed. When I stopped paying at Weight Watchers, I quit losing weight. With them it was accountability. It was embarrassing to go up there with all of those women and be weighed. I certainly was not going to gain weight. And besides, I would have felt like I was wasting money if I didn’t lose weight each week. We have both tried and were moderately successful with the Weigh Down Workshop. That was until the founder of that movement went nuts. Actually, we stopped before that happened. The results were always the same. We lost weight but ended up gaining it back. Now I don’t know if we are caught up in all of the hype but we are trying to lose weight the Dr. Phil way. We have been watching his show and those guys on the show are really inspiring.

So that is on our plate now (no pun intended) and as we succeed you, loyal reader, will read about it. We might even throw in some pictures here and there. I think I have my Speedo somewhere… Okay, now that you have that image in your mind I will put you at ease. I don’t have a Speedo. I was just kidding. I sold it at a garage sale after I realized my dream of being an Olympic swimmer just wasn’t going to happen.

The truth is that my weight puts my health at risk in many ways. My mother and her mother had heart disease. My mom’s dad had Diabetes. Both my parents had high blood pressure and I have been medicated for it for a number of years. The bottom line is that I want to be around for my grandkids. We both do. There is no better time to start than now. Well, maybe ten years ago would have been a better time. But there is no time like the present.

Categories: Uncategorized

A Life Flashes Before My Eyes

December 31, 2003 Leave a comment

We have been extremely lucky over the years. We are blessed. We have never had to rush one of the boys to the emergency room. That is until now. The last three days have been kind of a blur for me and Rhonda.

On Sunday some friends of our from college came to visit with their kids. We all had a great time: Trey entertaining their oldest son and Noah entertaining their youngest, who are both 4 years old. They were running and rough-housing like boys will do. Everything seemed normal. About 10:00 pm, we noticed that Noah was wheezing a bit. We put them in bed and Rhonda rubbed some Vicks on his chest and gave him some Robitussin. It sounded similar to other times that he was congested. We all went to bed finally but Cindee (our friend) was awakened by Noah crying. She went in the bedroom and brought him to our room. He was having a lot of trouble breathing which, naturally, scared him and that was exacerbating the problem. Rhonda and I laid there a minute or two trying to evaluate the situation. We quickly decided that he should go to the ER.

It is not as easy as it might seem to go to the ER. There is no hospital in Forney. So we either go to Terrell or Mesquite both of which are 11 miles away(or I guess Dallas is an option, too.) We chose Terrell because it is that hospital that our family doctor is affiliated with. There are people in this town, I will call them “Hospital Snobs”, that cringe when you mention that someone is in the Terrell hospital. We have had good to excellent care in Terrell and a small hospital has its advantages. All of the staff that dealt with Noah quickly fell in love with him.

noah in bed

The ER doctor took one look at Noah and immediately sprang into action. They quickly called the respiratory therapist (RT) who came over to assist. Noah had been so unable to breathe that his oxygen level was only 54. It should be 98-100. His was cyanotic (his tongue was blue). The RT had this look of grave concern on her face as she held the tube of oxygen under Noah’s nose. He was listless. She looked at the doctor and slowly shook her head. They have him a two breathing treatments and finally put one of those oxygen breathing nose thingys on him. He didn’t like that – it irritated his nose – but his O2 level was rising. They gave him another breathing treatment and he was slowly responding. Rhonda and I got about one hour’s sleep that night. We spent three hours in the ER and then they admitted him to a room. He has been there since having to put up with various contraptions to aid his breathing. He has had various masks and even a ventilation tent. He has been a real trooper and not complained too much about all of this. We found out Tuesday morning that the doctor wanted him to stay another night because it is those hours when relapses can occur. He wanted to check out his heart because Noah was having to work so hard just to breathe. When he inhaled he would suck his whole chest in and his little diaphram would just be working so hard.

The diagnosis was croup. The ER doctor told one the RTs that it is the worse case that he had seen in a long time. Noah was categorized critical at some point during this whole ordeal. As I looked at his very tired, listless body there in the ER his life flashed before my eyes. While I am trying to not be overly dramatic that really did happen. It was more like a rush of feelings. My little boy was in trouble and I could do nothing about it. I know that many of you have been in situations like this and you never really understand until it happens to you.

I am convinced that everything happens for a reason. I truly think it was a God thing. I think it was no accident that Mark and Cindee were in the room adjacent to Noah that night. Rhonda and I would not have heard him and Dayna sleeps very soundly and probably would not have heard him either. I don’t know what would have happened if we had not have acted when we did. I just know that it seemed to be a very close call that kind of shook us all up. But now, I sit here and think again about how blessed we are. Noah is back at home after three nights in the hospital. He is acting normal again – if not more hyper. We are giving him breathing treatments every six hours. I am glad this episode is over. Now maybe we can all get some sleep.

Categories: Uncategorized

It’s All About the Christ Child

December 25, 2003 Leave a comment

I was sitting here today staring off into the Christmas tree and contemplating the birth of Jesus. I thought about the star, Mary, Joseph, and the humble manger that Jesus rested in. I thought about the great miracle that God performed. I thought about Mary. And then I wondered about Joseph. The following came from that:

 

Donny: Hello Joe, how’s it going with you?

Joseph: I am fine. Please call me Joseph.

Donny: Okay. I am sorry. So your story is quite amazing.

Joseph: Well, it’s all about the Christ child. But, yes, it is amazing. Mary and I have been blessed beyond measure. What a trip it was!

Donny: I cannot imagine how it must have been to realize that Mary was pregnant with God’s son.

Joseph: It was difficult at first. I didn’t know what to do and thought that I was going to have to make a very hard decision. But then the angel appeared and changed my life. I mean to say, it certainly turned my head.

Donny: How could you deal with all of that?

Joseph: It wasn’t hard to trust God with the fact that Mary was pregnant. The hardest thing was coming to terms with my abilities to raise a king… the very son of God, no less. I was just a simple carpenter. What did I know about divine fathering?

Donny: You must have done a good job. God must have been pleased.

Joseph: Well, Jesus was a great boy. He was perfect, you know. He knew no sin. So I guess in the greater picture it wasn’t that hard. There was the time when Mary and I lost him. We could not find him anywhere. That was a mixed bag of emotions. On the one hand, we knew that he was God’s son. You can’t have a better protector than God. But, on the other hand, God gave him to us to raise and we did not take that lightly. We did finally find him preaching in the temple. Can you believe that? A twelve-year-old boy preaching in the temple. It made us proud. We did have good times together. Much like any other father and son.

Donny: How much of God’s plan did you know about?

Joseph: Well, anyone who loved God knew the prophecy. We both knew what his destiny was. I mean, the whole reason he came to us was to be among us. It’s kind of funny, you know? The King of Kings born into a very simple family in a very simple way. He had the most humble of births but had the highest purpose anyone could ever have. To save the world.

Donny: It must have been hard to let him go?

Joseph: Well, naturally, Mary took it real hard. Even though he would return in three days it was hard to let him go. Just seeing him up on that cross was agony. But in the end we were only separated from him for a short time. So that worked out great.

Donny: It’s a great story and you, my friend, are a great guy. You were, no doubt about it, a great father. Thanks for taking time for this.

Joseph: My pleasure.

 

Joseph inspires me in many ways. He loved Mary unconditionally, trusted God totally, and gave of himself in a way that no other father can imagine. I think of all of the pressures that come with parenting; how much more did he likely have? But God would not have it any other way. His plan was perfect. My Christmas wish and prayer for all of you is that this year the real reason for Christmas did not get pushed aside in all of the hustle and bustle that this holiday has become. Because Joseph was absolutely right. It is about the Christ child. It was then and it is now. The wise men sought Him then and wise men still seek Him.

Categories: Uncategorized

The first week in November.

November 3, 2003 Leave a comment

The first week of November is always special and fun for me. With my birthday and then (and more importantly) my anniversary, this week always causes me to reflect over the past. It’s hard to believe that I am 39 years old. That really used to sound sooooo old. It is funny how our perspective changes. I find myself thinking that my parents were this age when I was 3-4 (about Noah’s age). They seemed so old or grown up. Funny, I don’t feel all that grown up. I am still making mistakes and learning from them. I wonder sometimes if Trey and Noah see me the same way I saw my parents. They weren’t perfect but at the time I saw them as fixers of my toys, menders of my hurts, solvers of all things problematic. That kind of makes them seem, well, if not perfect, then certainly something much, much more than adequate. Do my boys see me and Rhonda in those terms? Do they know how much we screw up? I guess not. I hope not.

As for my anniversary, it has a been a great blessing to have Rhonda with me (and love me) for the last 16 years. They have really flown by. I am still learning how to love her in the way that she deserves to be loved. As the song says, “My love for her is like a drop in the ocean compared to God’s love for her.” I want to love her like God loves her. That is the love that she deserves from me. It is cool to think that someday I will have the capacity to love her that way. It’s been fun through the years kidding her about stuff like her first grey hairs (now I am being repaid for that one – yes, I still have enough hair to have some grey ones). But that is the fun of it. She is really getting more beautiful as time goes by. And I find that I love her more and more as each day goes by. She really completes me (to borrow a line from a movie.) But enough mushy stuff. You can’t blame me though. It is the first week in November.

Categories: Uncategorized

Halloween again?

October 31, 2003 Leave a comment

The Rekindling the Romance conference that Rhonda and I attended was great. It was great to be able to spend uninterrupted time with her and focus on our marriage and relationship. Steven Curtis Chapman was really transparent about his own marriage, admitting that they have had some problems through the years but with God’s help have always remained committed to each other and have worked to resolve the differences. It was inspiring to see that he is a normal guy that has normal problems.

It’s hard to believe that today is Halloween. It doesn’t seem right. Maybe because the high temperature today is going to be in the 80s. I want it to get cold here. I really miss that about Amarillo. We are going to the church tonight to the Annual Pumpkin Patch. I will take pictures and like last year post them later tonight. So you can come back tomorrow to check them out.

Categories: Uncategorized

Results, Relearning, and Rekindling

October 23, 2003 Leave a comment

I went back to the doctor to give him some more blood. He called me a couple of days later and told me that my triglycerides were really high (over 500) but that my total cholesterol was 202. He said that 200 was considered normal so, all in all, he was pleased. He did say that he wants to treat the triglyceride problem but since the numbers for my liver functions are still elevated (and the drugs would probably elevate it more) he wanted to take a look at that first. He mentioned that I might get a sonagram but probably a CT scan to see what is going on in there. So that may be in my future in the next few weeks. Actually, I am really surprised that my cholesterol was that low. I was expecting it to be much higher. Then would come the endless birrage of helpful suggestions from Rhonda (notice I didn’t say nagging) to eat all those foods that don’t taste good.

Wouldn’t you know it! I finally get my solo down for the Christmas thing at church and they go and change the words to it. It is coming along. I am so glad I didn’t get a speaking part. I don’t think I could have handled that. We have a blocking rehearsal on Saturday but I am not going. Rhonda and I have plans to attend the new Family Life marriage conference on Saturday. It is called Rekindling the Romance. Life sure has a way of sucking the wind out of people. We are so busy or tired. We live for our kids and don’t hardly spend any time with just each other. So we are both looking forward to focusing on each other for a while, albeit a short while. The icing on the cake – Steven Curtis Chapman and his wife will be there to entertain. He is my all-time favorite artist. His music is awesome.

Categories: Uncategorized