Monday, February 24, 2014

Aunt's Brag Book

I'm so proud of our fur niece, Honey Bunch- She's so great at being cute and taking naps which pretty much sums her typical day! Abby and Nick are good at sending us pictures all the time and I'm grateful Nick loves her as his own!

-Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Family makes the best friends

Chris and I were thrilled that Abby and Nick were able to come spend a long weekend with us!  We four have been looking forward to this visit for a long time!  Here are some highlights:

I enjoyed turning some our favorite recipes gluten-free so that Nick and Abby could enjoy...

We used our mini-whip for the first time!  You add heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar and vanilla and BAM- homemade whipped cream!

Of course there were board games!  We played Settlers, Carcassonne, Ticket to Ride and Sorry, which Chris was glad to win.  

Saturday evening, we headed downtown to show Nick and Abby the skyline and Friendship Fountain.

On Sunday we drove 2 hours south to Disney World!  This was my first visit to Disney and I loved the atmosphere, especially seeing all the little girls dressed up as their favorite princess.

The monorail unnerved me a little- I felt like we could fall off at any minute!

Our strong men trying to pull the sword from the stone!

The Swiss Family Robinson tree house... of my favorite childhood movies!

I just loved seeing all the characters!

By afternoon, the park was so packed, the only place to sit was the sidewalk, but it happened to be a great seat for the parade!

One of our highlights was meeting Mickey Mouse!  He was so happy to see us!

Leaving the happiest place on earth was a little bittersweet, even though we were all exhausted!

Hope to see you soon, Mickey!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

For my Valentine

You Decorated My Life

by Sam Cooke
sung by Kenny Rogers

All my life was a paper, once plain, pure and white

Till you moved with your pen, changing moods now and then

Till the balance was right

Then you added some music, every note was in place

And anybody could see all the changes in me

By the look on my face

And you decorated my life, created a world where dreams are apart

And you decorated my life by painting your love all over my heart

You decorated my life

Like a rhyme with no reason in an unfinished song

There was no harmony, life meant nothing to me

Until you came along

And you brought out the colors, what a gentle surprise

Now I'm able to see all the things life can be

Shining soft in your eyes

And you decorated my life, created a world where dreams are apart

And you decorated my life by painting your love all over my heart

You decorated my life

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Our weekend

We had a lovely day celebrating our one year anniversary of meeting.  For lunch I made delicious baked ziti that I got at my recipe shower Tuesday.  We'll be eating on that for several days but we love leftovers! 

For dinner, we had burgers and tots.  Moma had given us a cheese dome at see them all the time on Food Network (they look like an upside down silver bowl with a handle). If you place it over your burgers, it keeps them juicy, melts the cheese and steams the buns.  It's one of my new favorite things!

We were so excited to find out last minute about a Southern Gospel concert- Brian Free & Assurance and The Bowling Family and had such a good time together!

Hey- I think someone photo bombed us!

The Bowling Family...they sound so much like the Hinsons

Brian Free & Assurance...the bass singer on the far right is from Decatur!

Brian is the most awarded Southern Gospel tenor of all time and I love his voice!  He sang with Gold City back when I was growing up so his voice has always taken me to a happy place!


We had our directory picture made this morning!  I can't tell you how happy I was to not have to do that alone this time!  We're really enjoying our Sunday School class where we're studying James and talking about a lot the power of our words in our marriages. 

Chris is studying this afternoon while I get some things ready for the week while watching some Olympics.  We are both loving watching the winter games!

Hope everyone has a blessed week...may the Lord shower you with unexpected blessings!

Friday, February 7, 2014

One year ago...

One year ago {February 8}, I first saw the man that would be my husband just 260 days later.

When his handsome eHarmony profile picture popped up in my e-mail with the message "Meet your new match, Christopher, from Jacksonville" I felt a tinge of excitement but when I saw that he loved Southern Gospel, I was downright giddy!  

Seven days later (which happened to be Valentine's Day!) we graduated from eHarmony's guided communication to open communication, eH's version of email.  For the next month, we exchanged dozens of emails, with a total of over 50,000 words!

I first mentioned Chris in my journal on February 19- "Talking to Chris from Jacksonville on eH...really like him- we have tons in common."

Just 17 days after being matched, the Lord clearly reminded me that He is able to do immeasurably more than I could hope or imagine and told me to "relax and enjoy...he's the one!"

Thirty days after being matched, I knew I was in love with Chris Brooks.  No question.  I hadn't even spent one moment face-to-face with him yet!

We first met in person 62 days after being matched on eHarmony and got engaged on our 103rd day of knowing each other.

Many of you walked those beautiful, precious days with us but what I might not have shared before is what was going on in my heart right before I met Chris.  Just a month before, I had faced a deep disappointment but instead of sending me into depression, it sent me to the Lord's arms where He could speak truth into my heart.  In the weeks right before meeting my husband, the Lord used Psalm 71:5 and Genesis 15:1 to solidify my faith-

"Thou art my hope, Thou art my trust from my youth"

"Do not be afraid, Abram {Katy}. I am your shield, your very great reward."

In those moments where it was just me and God, I knew that if He never brought marriage my way, He'd be enough- He always had been and always would be.  I had no idea at the time that the Lord was graciously preparing my heart for my husband.  I'm so grateful He worked out some of the kinks in my heart, allowing me to fully love my husband.

I have so many sweet friends who desire marriage yet with no prospects on the horizons.  I want to remind them that I lift them up to the Lord often, asking Him to bless them as He's blessed me.  Don't lose hope, could be your "one year ago..."!