Friday, January 30, 2009


I know this sounds strange, but I am so excited that we finally got our marker in and put into the ground. It has been so tough going to visit Carter only to see a patch of grass. I have already been by to see the marker and Brent and I plan to go tomorrow. I will take pictures post them. I feel like finally this nightmare is coming closer to an end. Although, we still have a TON of issues left with medical bills and hospital issues, it will be nice to feel like we have some peace and more to look forward too. We know that the Lord has big things in store for us again. I can finally say, that I do feel like "dancing again." Look the next couple of days for more pictures on Carter.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Post 101 - Bitterness Dancing

I can't believe I missed the fact that we have posted 100 posts! WOW! So here on post 101, I really don't have a ton to say right now. The last few weeks have been a little tough. Lot's going on. I have been taking this great bible study on Thursday's called "When Wallflower's Dance." It's great. It's all about learning how to "dance again". Learning how to be a women of confidence and all that God wants from me as a women. This week, my bible study has been talking about bitterness. I really didn't know how much bitterness I have held onto and deal with until I began to ask the Lord to reveal it to me. I had asked my girls ( through tears) to pray for my heart. I was getting so discouraged that I was letting jealousy fester in my heart each time I heard someone announce they were having a baby, or when friends would talk about what a great pregnancy they were having, or when sweet perfect babies were being born. Each time, I would desire to feel so good about it, but just wanted to scream and yell how unfair life was! After spending the last two nights really learning and studying about bitterness, I saw how I was killing my heart and dying inside over this. It became more clear to me why I was depressed, crying, sad and just not motivated to do all that I needed to do on a day to day basis. Isn't it so good when the Lord shows us what is eating our hearts. I know I mess up. I know that I don't always love the way I should. I want to grow and learn how to love the way Jesus loves. I tease Brent how he always finds the good in the worse of people. He will defend ANYONE no matter how hurt he feels by that person. He is always the one reminding me that when I feel someone is insensitive or being hurtful or selfish, to look from their point of view/shoes. Hurting-wounded people - hurt people, there is a reason to their behavior. I have to admit, that it has been freeing to be able to let go a lot of the bitterness I have stored up in my own heart. I was sure over the past few weeks that I would never be able to feel whole again. I was beginning to feel like I was back on the day Carter died. I was afraid I would forever have a hard time making rational choices. That was one of the hardest things for both of us after we lost Carter. There were days that we could not think rationally. We found ourselves repeating stories to people again and again. We found ourselves forgetting things that were normally second nature to us both. We soon learned, after attending a conference last fall, that we both were operating "In the Grip." It's that time in life when you are so stressed that you are not acting yourself. I feel like we both are getting back to being ourselves again. Finally, I am starting to DANCE!!!! I am ready to get my groove on. Come dance with me! God has good things in store for our lives.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Compliment (maybe)

Brent and I have been taking a deep water aerobic class at our local indoor pool. Don't be impressed, we just started last week and this is only our 4th class. In four classes we have had four instructors. Each lady teaches differently and you never do the same exercises twice it seems like. Tonight after class, the instructor asked Brent if he was taking the class because of any injury (what she was implying was that he must be a serious athlete and was taking this class since he was injured and can only do this!) I told him (being funny) she must have missed your little gut so she would have realized that you were doing this to get rid of that! I do have to admit that out of most the people in the class, especially of the men, Brent is one of the much smaller guys! I can see how he could be mistaken for a "serious athlete!" Right now, we both are praying that we just live to see tomorrow after these tough workouts!!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Happy Happy Birthday!

Today was Brent's bday. It was a great day. Long day, but good. Both Brent and I have always had birthday traditions that we have created for ourselves on our special days. I always love to go out to eat and see a movie. Some times we don't actually get to have that happen on my actually day, but it is always close. This year Brent and I went to PF Changs for dinner and to a movie last week knowing we had church tonight and would not have the time to go out. So tonight, as traditional we do, I made Brent's favorite meal, Pepper Steak. Not just any pepper steak, his mom's pepper steak. This meal has taken me 7 years at least to work on. When we got married, I was pretty confident in my own cooking. I felt like I was pretty good. Brent felt that he was a pretty great cook too. Of course he was very proficient at making Hamburger Helper! YUCK. I was great at creating new fun meals, but being my northern self, I didn't have a clue about spices. Brent grew up with a mom and dad that were both fantastic cooks and understand the need to spice things up and how to add good flavor. So I had a ton to live up too! (I am still not sure that I even come close to them). When we were dating, I called Lynn, Brent's mom to ask for this pepper steak recipe. To be honest, I had never heard of pepper steak. We didn't have much chinese food growing up either. It is now his bday dinner of choice. I am sure I still have a long way to go on making this meal just like "mom." But, I am guessing, I will never get it as good as she does, and that is okay! There are some things that are just meant to be made perfect by a mom! Thanks Lynn for sharing this dish, and hopefully I did it some justice.

Happy 35th Birthday Brent! Glad it was a special day. I am looking forward to another wonderful year with you.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration 2009

I could not let this day go by without stopping and taking note of what occur ed today. Even though Brent and I did not vote for the current president, that does not mean that we will not support him for the role he has been appointed today as of today. Most of all, we will continue to lift him up in prayer. I pray that decisions will not be made for our country based on feelings, emotions, or political party choices, but instead on the moral convictions the Lord places in our lives and requires us to answer to one day when we face Him in eternity. I pray for the first family, those two special girls who will grow up in the spot light of America. I pray that the Lord will send to them special ladies who will take them under their wings and instill in those little girls the security and mentorship that they will need to grow up in the way the Lord has for their lives.

Today was for sure historic, as it is ever 4 years for sure. Now we begin to pray for yet another man who we pray will take on the such a big job with the integrity that is required! (more comments to come soon!)

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Most imporant Entry Ever

As a child, I loved playing piano. In fact, I was the kid that didn't have to be reminded to practice, I had to be asked to stop practicing. I loved it. Yesterday our pastor asked us to practice something more important than paino. He asked us to pratice our faith. The Lord immediatly brought to mind this blog. I know that many of you have read my blog faithfully and get the idea that Brent and I love the Lord with all of our hearts. Through the good days and bad days, I hope after each time you read the updates that we post, the message is always clear that our constant is our love for the Lord {more importantly really - His love for us and everyone}. The Bible tells us, that He is faithful, even when people are not. But, then I started to think, there maybe one person out there that reads this blog and has no idea what we are talking about or that they never have asked Jesus to be their Savior. So, before we go one more day, let me take a second of your time and ask you to keep reading the most important blog entry I have ever done and as I introduce to you our best friend and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Jesus isn't just a historical figure that came and changed history {though He did do that for sure}. He was fully a man/human being and fully God at the same time, that came to this earth in order for you and I to be able to have eternal life. You see, God is such a Holy and pure God that we as sinful {sinful: offending God, not living up to His perfect standards, turning our backs on His love and plan} humans are unable to come to Him because He is not able to be have anything unholy in his presence. We are all unholy. That causes us a problem. A really BIG - eternal problem when you stop and think about this.

Before Christ came and died, the Israelites would have to give (an animal) sacrifices and a variety of offerings to keep in right relationship with God and others. The sacrifices also preserved the the holiness of God's presence in their lives - a symbolic cleansing. There had to be shedding of blood {the lifeline for all living creatures ... including people} for sins to be covered. Can you imagine having to do that today? Each time we lie, or think a bad thought, are jealous, envious, yell at your kids or at your husband. We are so busy, I don't know when we would have time to sacrifice animals, too. The offerings/sacrifices of the Old Testament were not intended to remove or forgive sin, rather it was a preparation - pointing to the reality of the coming Messiah. The Old Testament and New Testament teach that animal sacrifices were not intended to save people from their sins or get them to heaven. Rather, salvation has always been a matter of faith ... faith in Jesus Christ - the Messiah, His sacrifice for all people. For God so loved the world, He sent His son Jesus as a baby. After 33 years, Christ died on a cross {though He was perfect in every way, never sinning} for your sins and mine. He came and lived a perfect life and died the death of a harden criminal for sins that he didn't commit. But that one act of sacrifice made it possible for us to live eternally in heaven with our God. That is really GOOD NEWS {that is what Gospel means} when you think about it, amist a lot of bad news we hear on the news day by day. The reality is, we live in that relationship today ... here on earth, not having to just wait for heaven.

So what do you need to do about this? The same thing Brent and I did years ago. We realized that we were sinners. We knew that we both were headed to hell because we were not perfect and fell short of God's glory. Only those who have no sin could enter heaven, unless you have asked Jesus to clean you of your sin. That was the best day in our both of our lives. Do we deserve this? No. In fact, it's funny when I hear people talk about life isn't fair. They are right, it isn't fair. It isn't fair that people spend eternity in hell. WRONG. The unfairness is that people spend life eternally in heaven. We all deserve hell because we are full of sin. The Bible {in Romans 3:23} says all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. The only way to resolve this sin problem is to ask Jesus to live in your heart. The Bible also shares that Jesus is the only way to God, the only one who can provide forgiveness, true peace, true purpose in life for here and now, the one who created us and loves us, and knows us the best. The one who wants to be in a personal - intitmate relationship with us all. You can begin this relationship right now by....

A - Admitting to God, you are a sinner and have sinned {it only takes 1 sin to be a sinner ... all of us have done this for sure} and need His forgiveness.

B - Believe God, that He sent His son, Jesus Christ to be the final sacrifice for all sins. That what Jesus did on that cross was for you personally. He died for your sins and God rose Him from the dead 3 days later. Ask Jesus to forgive you of your sins and ask Him to be your personal Lord and Savior.

C - Confess with your mouth, that Jesus is Lord and Savior what you believe in your heart and what He has done for you, personally. Tell somebody.

We love each of you and hope that you will take this step of faith today. If you have questions about this post, we would love to hear from you! Make 2009 the year that you secure your future in eternity!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Cute Toes

Do you ever feel like sometimes you just need a nice spa day in order to give yourself a little boost? Today is that day for me. Even if I am having to give the nice lady quarters to pay for a little spa action, I think that is one of the things that will give me that boost. I have tried not to get on here and be a downer, but to be honest, there are so many days that I feel down. Brent, being my voice of reason, tells me that it is natural for lots of people our age to start having babies and that I shouldn't be surprised with each announcement. He's right. (he did not say that to be insensitive, just wise!) It is less about being surprised, but more of a small sting to my heart when I hear that God has blessed someone else with a baby. Stupid I know. There are days that I can handle hearing the mundane tasks that my friends are doing with their own children, but there are still days that I want to scream and tell them to stop talking about their children and be more sensitive! I AM SO SO SO SELFISH. I know that. I know this sounds horrible too. Then I start to remember that it's not about me or how I feel, but more about what the Lord has planned in my life and in the lives of others. Isn't that what I tell people all of the time? When I tell others that same advice, I mean it!!!! In fact I shared this very week with a family that when we have these symptoms of depression and pain and we submit to that, we allow Satan to creep into our lives and we begin to doubt the Lord's plan for us. We begin to lose faith. I am not saying depression isn't real or that we should not be allowed to have depression. Depression is real (I am a therapist, I would go out of business if I didn't say that!) I know the right answers, but there are just days that I feel like a good quiet time sitting in a chair getting my toes done, begging the Lord to heal my heart and give me the strength to make it one more day would help a little bit! It may give me the strength to celebrate with others in the goodness of the blessings in their lives. Today, it seems like if someone was pampering me a little, maybe it would be a little easier! Ever feel that way? (If I hadn't worked out so hard all week long, I would add a little bite of chocolate with that too. But, I am NOT going to give into something that I will regret tomorrow!) We are celebrating Brent's bday tonight at his favorite resturant and watching a movie as well. His bday isn't until next week, so I am sure we will get to celebrate again, but I think I may need to do a little extra today to get into that celebration mood! I hate being so selfish! Lord create in me a clean heart!

Monday, January 05, 2009


I can't believe it has been 7 years since Brent and I said "I do." I have considered us newly married for so long and now finally realize that we are not the newly married couple any more. They said that 7 years means the 7 year itch! I see no itching here for sure. I think if we can make it through all that we have been through in the 7 years and still love each other more than we did on our wedding day, we will stay scratch free! For the fun of it, I thought I would attach a copy of our story that Brent wrote in our program. I can say this for sure, if I had to marry you all over again baby, I would do it again and again and again! So glad I have you to "Do life with!"

Today is also my sister's birthday and our puppy Wrigley's 4th bday! Lot's to celebrate for sure.
Happy Anniversary Baby! I love you!

Our Story

Hollywood often depicts love stories as an easy formula in which people operate in unrealistic “love at first sight” problem free worlds. We know reality is different. Every real life love story is unique and special while being made up of several key components. The most important key in our relationship has been the love of God found only in Jesus Christ. This is our story………….

While stepping out in faith and attempting to follow the Lord’s leading in their lives, two people left almost opposite ends of the country to arrive in New Orleans. The young man came from west Texas while the lovely young lady traveled down from Maryland. The two bright-eyed, optimistic, eager students entered orientation at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary full of questions and hope. Each were consumed in individual thoughts and concerns, wondering what this new chapter life would entail. While sitting in an orientation session, the two met. Appearing to be an ordinary introduction – all of Heaven applauded. You see God has a plan for their lives and knew exactly when the two would meet.

Shortly after the orientation, the new school semester began. The two found themselves in all of the same classes together. Through mutual friends and ordained circumstances, the two began interacting outside of the classroom as well. Instantly, the two hit it off and the connection was made! Well, not exactly. However, after a misunderstanding that led to a deep all night conversation – the relationship took on a new level of respect.

After weeks and months of spending time together in and out of class, the friendship grew stronger in mutual love and respect. Through a variety of trials and tribulations as well as joys and triumphs, they found their friendship to truly be a gift from God. In the early spring of the next semester, each began to analyze their friendship at a close look. Both agreed to remain friends only in order to preserve the uniqueness of the relationship. However, as the summer rolled in things began to change.

While in Brazil, she began to realize her love for and desire to commit to him. She also began to pray and ask God to give her confirmation and peace in this direction. He remained in New Orleans eagerly awaiting her arrival back to the States. Upon her arrival, he began to realize how much he missed her and wanted to be with her all of the time.

In the beginning of the fall semester, they could no longer deny their desire to pursue their relationship on a deeper level. As he began to tell her how he felt, he decided to wait. He feared the exploration might jeopardize the friendship. So they waited, sometimes patiently, sometimes not so patiently. Finally, as the semester drew to an end, after prayers and much confirmation, he initiated the conversation. The couple shared their love for one another.

The relationship continued to blossom over the next year and on a horse drawn carriage, the couple got engaged. Now we have arrived at this moment. This is the day where we make our love and commitment to each other public and permanent. We thank God for how He has loved us and allowed us to meet, become best friends, and marry as life partners. Our prayer for you, our treasured friends and family, is that you would personally and truly know how wide and deep and high is the love of Christ Jesus for you. That you would follow in the footsteps of the One who loved you enough to die for you.

And so, today, with thankfulness too great for words, we stand before Him and promise ourselves to Him and to each other… for life. We praise Him for the simple joys of life and complex sufferings as well that draws us to Himself and a future spent together.

Brent and Jenna

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Welcome 2009

Wow, I can't believe it is already 2009. What a year it has been. Looking back at all 2008 held for us is sort of overwhelming. One year ago, Brent and I were up to our elbows painting our little house (that is an understatement) and coaching basketball. This year New Years was a little more low key than that. Today we spent the day resting and relaxing instead of working on house projects. It's nice sometimes to just stop and be. Of course there are the obvious reasons that we are glad to be saying goodbye to 2008. But at the same time so much happened in 2008 that has changed our lives forever. I had big hopes that our grave marker would have already arrived and been placed in Carter's grave so that we could start 2009 as a fresh new start. But again, that was a Jenna plan. I could begin to list tons of goals that I have for myself and our family for this year and hope that many of those appropriate goals will come true. But, once again those goals belong to us. If I have learned anything in 2008, it is that my trust belongs in the Lord alone. I have no control over life or the events that occur in this world. Each day brings new choices, challenges, sorrows, joys and tests. Instead of focusing on what it is that I desire, I hope to make 2009 a year of counting the blessings we have and with each new day seeking the Lord's best for us in all that we say and do. It's one thing to say that we truly trust the Lord at all times. It is another challenge to live it. We choose to make 2009 the year that focus on living out our faith and seeking God's best. We will fail some days, and we will be a success some days. I pray that all that we do in 2009 will bring the Lord glory. WELCOME 2009!! We can't wait to see what it brings!