Saturday, June 27, 2015

4th of July Challenge

One year ago we moved to Clinton to live at Down Range. If you haven't heard of Down Range then check out their website 

We love the ministry at Down Range. Recently CJ has been running Manhood Academy for high school and middle school boys. We have heard so many stories from kids and parents about how their lives were impacted while at camp! 

Since we have lived at Down Range, we have gained a whole new appreciation for our military. Men and women who serve in the US Military are admirable. They love their country... Deeply. They love each other even more deeply. They have a brotherhood that is indescribable. 

And they love an American Flag! 

Since the Fourth of July is coming up soon, I decided to have a small fundraiser to raise money for Down Range's next project.... A paintball course! 
Construction will be underway very soon! 

My goal: 500$ 
(obviously this won't build the whole course but ever little bit counts, right?!) 

How I hope to reach the goal
Sell 10 wooden flags for 50$ each. Custom painted.

How you can help:
Buy a flag!! 
Or you could just donate to the CJ Stewart foundation if you don't want a flag! 

Why is this blog titled "4th of July Challenge?"
I am glad you asked! 
Instead of buying a flag for yourself, I challenge you to purchase a flag for someone you know in the US Military! 
If you do this, your purchase is a double blessing: Down Range plus directly saying thank you to someone you know personally that serves our country. 

Now for the photos! 

These are solid wood. 
Sizes range from 11x14 to 11x18. 
They are able to stand on their own. 
You probably don't want to have to have these shipped :-) 

Close up of the texture on the flag! This flag is a deeper red than the following flag. 

This flag is a true bright red. The wood on this one is completely covered with caulk and painted.

Baby boy flag! Would be very cute in a nursery. 

 Baby girl flag. Would be precious in a nursery. The blue is a little more tuquoise in person. 

ReAdy. Set. Happy 4th!! 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Our Sunday Morning

Lee has been out of town for the past several days so this morning I was getting the boys ready for church... Alone :-) I think parents everywhere can agree that Sunday mornings have a natural chaos about them. For whatever reason, it is just hard to get yourself, your spouse and those wild kiddos out the door and to church on time. 
This morning my boys were playing with the money in their cash register. I was rushing around trying to get everything we needed when Miller walked up to me with a hand full of money and said, "Mama, I wanna take dis money to da church and I think I might cuuuld buy somfin there." I looked down at him and my initial thought was, "what in the world? We don't have time for that! And there is nothing to buy at the church!" 
BUT... Luckily I refrained from speaking any of those thoughts. 

Instead I just said "Okay Miller. You can take 2 pieces of money with you. But I don't think you are going to be able to buy anything at church."  

We resumed with getting into the car and heading to church. 

On the way to church I honestly forgot about the money. I had zero expectations as my primary goal was to get everyone to church on time and safely. 

We arrived. I unbuckled the boys and when Miller jumped out of the van I noticed that he was clinging tightly to those two very large, fake pieces of money. I smiled. 

It was a bustling morning at church. (They literally had to ask people to scoot over because it was so crowded in the service). 

When we walked through the front doors of the church, we just happened to see our campus pastor. I told him hello and when he began to greet Miller I said, "he brought that money with him because he thought he just might be able to buy something." 

Our pastor responded by saying, "Sure! We can find him something to buy!" 
About that time, the Preschool Minister walked up to all of us. The pastor looked at her and said (as if Miller's mission to buy something was his main concern) "he is looking for something to buy with that money he has. Do you think we could find something?"  She responded, "Yeah! We can find him something to buy. What about a pen?" So she led us over to the front desk and told the workers at the desk what Miller was wanting to do. So they "sold" him a pen. 

Miller just grinned a sheepish grin. He was so proud. 

As I sat down in church I was replaying the whole scenario. I was overcome with gratitude to be in this community and at Pinelake Clinton (our church). Two of the church's busiest people this morning took time to help a 3 year old purchase something with his fake money. 

I was reminded of the African Proverb "It takes a village to raise a child." 

There is such truth in that! I desire to raise boys who become confident men. I want Miller to be creative in his thinking and dream big. I want him to be able to make a decision about something and walk it out confidently. 

This morning a 3 year old boy independently decided to take some money along and buy something. There were so many things that could have crushed his plan and his confidence. However, a village of people came around my child. Miller will never remember that pen. 


Today a seed of confidence was planted in him. One day that tiny boy will be a man. Lee and I are fully aware that we need a village to help us raise him well. 

Thank you for BEING THE VILLAGE!