Monthly Archives: August 2008

what day is it?

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Hey everyone!

Shannon, the girls, and I are now in the Colony, a sweet little place north of Dallas, TX, where we will adopt a wait-and-see approach with what Gustav is doing in the next few days.

We wound up in Tyler last night, staying with some of our closest friends and their two kids in a house they managed to get into while the owners were out of town. (in the interest of full disclosure, it was their parents’ place)

it was great to lay our heads down and sleep – after a light night DQ and Starbucks run, of course. i think large doses of sugar and caffeine are key to making it through 20-hour days.

this morning after a slow start, we made our way to the DFW area, where we will be staying for the next few days. like many people from the Gulf Coast region, we have friends, family, and co-workers who are not leaving their homes for the storm. if you will, please join us in praying for God’s mercy and protection on all those who did not for whatever reason make it out of harm’s way. while we’re at it, let’s also pray that He will just blow a bit on Gustav and annhiliate the storm before it goes aground anywhere and causes any damage. hey, it can’t hurt to ask, right?

speaking of naptime, i think i’m going to go pass out for a little while now. we’re doing fine – thanks for checking in on us.

jeffrey (and the girls)

Gustav, you dirty dog.

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hey everyone!
after some prayer, planning, information and advice gathering, and no small amount of packing, we have decided to leave town.

word on the street is that a mandatory evacuation of our area is going to happen in the next 24 hours. some good friends of ours in Dallas have asked us to come stay with them, so it looks like Labor Day ’08 will be in the DFW Metroplex for the Hazletons

this photo of Lilly has nothing to do with this post; i just thought you’d get a kick out of a cute baby. (look, Doug – puppies!)

we’re taking our laptop, as well as our fancy new phones (we are allegedly on “America’s most reliable network” – so feel free to call or email us if you’d like to check in.

the last time we did a for real hurricane evacuation, the wife and i found out we were expecting. i wonder if our family is getting their hopes up for more good baby news. stay tuned…

we love you guys.


Hurricane Gustav…Here We Go Again….

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[For those of you who don’t live in our area…]

Well, it’s sometime after 11pm Friday night as I’m writing this. We’ve just heard word from our pastor (official announcement will come from a news broadcast later on) that beginning at 12 noon on Saturday, evacuation will begin for those with “special needs”, provided that the path of Gustav remains on the projected course. At the same time (noon Saturday) voluntary evacuation begins.

If nothing changes, a mandatory evacuation will be instated at 6am Sunday morning.

At this point, we’re not sure what we are going to do, or which direction we’ll go. Everyone from New Orleans will likely be headed West or Northwest, possibly making it difficult for us to travel to North Louisiana to stay with my family there.

Regardless, our bags will be packed and ready to go by noon tomorrow.

I’m really not looking forward to the prospect of having to do this again, just three years after Hurricane Katrina, which did not affect us, and Hurricane Rita, which rocked our world here in Beaumont. There are still people here in the Beaumont area who haven’t yet been able to re-build or move back into their houses that were destroyed or damaged in Hurricane Rita.

Please pray first that the storm will dissipate. Pray that we will have wisdom to know if/when and where to go. And please pray for safety (and patience) if we do end up on the road. The last time we did this, we had a dog, not two children in the backseat.

Okay, I’m off to bed. We appreciate your prayers. And I’ll keep you updated as we can.
Love you all,

Musings of a Nosey Neighbor

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I have a new neighbor. Well, she just moved in a few months ago. I think she’s single, maybe just finished college. She is young… and so very different from me. I see her from time-to-time, coming and going. She is busy. She looks like a picture from a magazine – someone from Hollywood or some other place than here. She wears cute styles, like those pony tails that are completely smooth with just enough poof in the back – how do they do that?

I happen to know that she works at a salon down the street, where I’ve had my hair done before. So I guess that’s how she can have such a pony tail.

That is definitely not what my pony tail looks like! A week or so ago, she was sitting on her patio, talking on her cell phone, dressed in something really fashion-forward, with her perfectly coiffed hair… and I was coming down the sidewalk with groceries. I had Lilly in one arm, with my purse and a grocery bag dangling… With my other arm I carried 3 more grocery bags, a small diaper bag, and holding Maggie’s hand, who is want to dilly-dally. I was already sweating, and my messy whispers of hair that straggle out of my pony tail were sticking to my face. I wondered if she were looking at me thinking, Jeez, I’m glad that’ not my life!

Yesterday morning – no lie – I saw her carrying in some groceries in a cute shirt and skirt, a fashionable hat, and some fuzzy Ugg-style boots. (I don’t even know how to spell that!!) Okay, guys, remember it’s southeast TEXAS, for goodness sakes, and it’s 85 degrees at 9:00 in the morning! No one wears fuzzy boots!

Have I given you a clear enough picture of how far my world is from hers?

Well, let me tell you what we have in common. We both are women. We are young. We are bombarded by a hard world. We have hopes, dreams, desires. We have hurts and disappointments. We have a Father who loved us enough to send His Son to die for us. I know that; maybe she doesn’t. It would be easy for me to let our differences and my own insecurities keep me from reaching out to her. But that would be wrong.

I believe we are here, in this apartment complex, for a God-ordained purpose. And I mean to start opening my eyes and look for His Divine appointments. How about you?

“So be careful how you live, not as fools but as those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity for doing good in these evil days.” – Ephesians 5:15-16

For a great post on this topic, check out this blog I just discovered.

For Sam

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I have to get this post done while it’s still today. You see, it’s been one year since our little friend, Sam went through a horrific ordeal which changed his life, and his parents’ lives forever. Many of you have heard us talk about our friends, Billy and Teesa. Sam is their wonderful little boy. Today is dedicated to him, and to thanking God for His mercy and intervention. Check out the post on their blog to read the whole story. We love you, Sam. And thank you, Father for giving Sam and his parents abundant life!

Here’s Billy, Teesa and Sam. I borrowed this pic from their blog.

Five Fabulous Years!!!

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Well, I have a lot of catching up to do – so many things to post, pictures and videos to share with you. But I’ll start with this – on Saturday, the 16th, Jeff and I celebrated our 5th Wedding Anniversary!

My parents came in for the occasion and took care of the girls while the two of us got away to Houston. We had so much fun, shopping at IKEA, going indoor rock climbing, and enjoying a delicious meal at Gourmet India. (Where we – with the entire restaurant – watched Michael Phelps win his 8th gold medal. The whole place cheered together!!)

Jeff and I give each other traditional anniversary gifts, based on the year. The first year is paper, so we gave each other books. The second year is cotton, so we gave each other a shirt (for Jeff) and a fluffy bath towel (for me!) Well, this year was wood, so I gave Jeff a chess set, which he is going to teach me how to play. And I looked out the window Saturday morning to find the best gift – a rocking chair!

I love my rocking chair, and Maggie has a matching one that she was given for her birthday. We are definitely rocking on the front porch kind of people…. well maybe not Jeff. He doesn’t like to sit still unless it involves the internet!

But this weekend he did get a chair that he likes. We found this super comfy chair at the scratch-n-dent section of IKEA. It was $50 off the regular price, and only had some dirt on the cover, which can be washed. I was walking around, looking at things, and noticed Jeff was no longer with me. I found him relaxing in this chair, and a few minutes later it was being packed into the back of our car. And now Maggie and Lilly love climbing in “Daddy’s Chair.”


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Last weekend, the local art museum had a “Things With Wings” event that was free for kids. The Houston Zoo set up a presentation and also brought a few feathered friends for the children to look at – and pet!

We took Maggie and Lilly to see and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Maggie got her face painted, and made some art projects as well. I love that she’s getting to the age where she can understand and participate in these little adventures.

Here’s some more pictures of our fun day.

A Swinging’ Time in Walker

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A few weekends ago, we drove to my parents’ house in Walker, Louisiana for my sister Sarah’s baby shower. (She’s having a boy in October!) Here are some shots from the weekend:

Taking a Rest 1/2-way through the trip
Sitting in my Mom’s rocker
I caught this shot through the window of my Dad and Maggie enjoying my favorite place at my parents’ house – the swing on the front porch.
We think every house should have a porch, and every porch should have a swing.

I was visiting with friends after Sarah’s shower and could feel Jeff pointing the camera at me.
Jeff about to steal a quick nap on the couch.
My sister Sarah before the shower
This frog is one of the paintings I finished for Baby William’s room.

Sisters Just-a Swingin’