Monday, September 26

Vacation day #….. ummm

The days have all run together… which is great.

Yesterday we stayed on the beach for most of the day, and today I paid for it. I am quite crispy, but I will survive.  :)

I started out the day waking up at 6:49!!!!!!!!! UGH!!!!! I ate my breakfast and chatted with Jesus while everyone else got around to waking up. While the others ate breakfast I happened to glance out the windows and see a whole crew of dolphins swimming on our shoreline. There were a TON of them. Their little fins kept popping up all over the place.


Those two little black spots…..yup dolphins. They were sneaky and I couldn’t get much of a picture, this is with my good camera and a great zoom lens….. whatever, you get the point.


The guys didn’t stay too long at the beach, the waves were a little low…….they headed to the condo to play more Black Ops, it was double xp you know.  :)

Quick video of the guys


This was our “cabana” for the day. Yes, it is a little ghetto…… but we loved it.  :)


We had the seagulls join us for lunch, they had a great time snacking on bread crusts and potato chips.



We also had this visitor come and hang out right in-front of our cabana.

After the day at the beach we came back, got all cleaned up and then headed to our favorite pizza place --- the Mellow Mushroom!




We then skirted off to The Trac. Which is a place with go-carts and bumper boats, putt-putt, and an arcade inside. Jess and I headed for the skee-ball area and cleaned up on tickets!!!



for 101 tickets Jess and I split them and got 10 “friendship bracelets”!!!! WOO! yeah….

We had a blast though.


TODAY I slept in till a whopping 8:30!!! Whoo! No dolphins sightings this morning… :(

We finally got up and around and went to lunch at Ribs & Reds….


It was SOOOOOOO good!!! Although Jess and I ordered the Ribs and Reds lunch platter, which is ribs and shrimp…. we were both unaware that the shrimp came steamed with the heads on….. totally gross. I man-ed up and took care of my shrimp and Jessica’s shrimp because it was freaking her out.  BUT all in all it was super amazing. Thanks to Craig Alberius for the recommendation.


When then headed to the mall and I picked up a few goodies for me and Hello Ladies…..


(my new computer tote)


Brand won me a SpongBob from the claw machine.  :) He has such a talent for those things.


HAD A BLAST TODAY! Don’t have a clue what we are doing tomorrow, but it will be amazing. TAKE THAT BACK ….. Tomorrow we will be heading to our nearest music store and purchasing the NEW SWITCHFOOT album!!!! WHAT???? YES!!!!!


Saturday, September 24

1st Full Day of Vacation!

Last night we got out and went into town and decided we needed to take some cute pics in front of the palm trees on the boardwalk….



We then went to eat at a place we didn’t get to eat at last time, the Hangout! It was a really neat place, if you are in the Gulf Shores area, check it out.  :)


The next morning, Brand and I “thought” we were sleeping in, but when we checked the clock it was 7:10…..ugh. I went ahead and got up, went out to the balcony and read my Bible. Something I LOVE to do when we are on vacation, especially here at these condos. The view is great, no one is up, there is just me, God and the ocean. Perfection.


After a bit, Brand got up and we took a walk on the beach and learned some interesting things about sea life….. Did you know that stingrays like to ride waves? Well the ones we saw on our walk did. Brand said they were hunting, but I think you can mix business and pleasure when you live in the ocean. It was pretty cool to spot out the stingrays in the water and then try and see where they went on their hunt. ALSO, fish like to ride the waves. As the clear waves were rolling in you could see schools of fish in the waves… was awesome. I got SO excited each time we saw it. Yes….I am a tourist.  :)


After our walk we came back, bummed around for a little bit and then we went to a pretty good sized outlet mall near us. We shopped till we dropped. We had a great time. Below is a pic of my lunch… honey chicken from the food court, it was yummy. I’m sure you don’t care, but whatever…


We got done shopping and decided that we were all tired and didn’t want to get back out and eat later tonight, so we went to the grocery store and picked up some dinner to cook and that is where we are now. Jess and I are on the computers, Brand and Kevin are on BlackOps…… They have done some fancy rigging to get this set-up below…. hehehehheehe


As long as we are relaxing on vacation, I don’t care what we are doing…..  :)


Jess snapped this pic of us last night when we were headed to dinner…. I love it.  :)


Tomorrow is beach day! We are hopefully gonna spend the whole day soaking up the sun, playing in the water and relaxing. We figured that since Sunday’s are usually our busiest days of the week, we would make this one the most relaxing. I should have some hilarious pics of Brand and Kevin to show and tell…. check back!!!


Friday, September 23

We Made It!!!!

We made it to Gulf Shores!!!! Our condo is super nice, with memory foam, king sized beds (yay) …. it was like coming home… or going to grandma’s house, the same warm feelings…..


Jessica and her new app….. it was hilarious!


Kevin is trying to sneak out of the pic… epic fail


The holy trinity of condiments! At Dairy Queen!



Directly out the condo! 16th floor


Our view to the right


Our view to the left


The guys trying to hook up the Xbox to the wireless internet for BlackOps later….

Monday, September 19

Guess What????

We leave for vacation in 4 days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I am a little excited, sorry!  :)


Thursday, September 15

The War I’m In

Odd title you might say….. everyday I think it is more and more accurate. This is a deep post for me, so if you are looking for happy-go-lucky today….skip this post.  :)  

Everyday I am in a war. Mostly an internal war, you know, keep my attitude correct, submitting and loving my hubby, walking in love to people I want to punch in the face, asking forgiveness for thinking about punching people in the face, keeping a balance in my home life and church life……’s a war. My current BIG war is over the children of the world (broad and wild war…I know.) In this post I will be quoting a lot of Ken Blount who if you don’t know was on the Gospel Bill Show back in the day, I said the prayer of salvation with Nickodemus when I was 7 or 8 years old. Needless to say that his ministry has a pretty big influence in my life.



If you don’t know I am the Children’s Pastor at CPC:Conway (wooohooo) and I am also the Nursery/Pre-K Coordinator for CPC:Benton (yessssss) so at this point in my life, kids are one of my top priorities. Let me give you a little “Mandyness” background info. My childhood was VERY much involved in church. My parents were in the band and praise team, they led a small group, mom painted a huge mural in the children’s church wall ….. we were at church all the time, and … I …. loved …. it. The church was my second home, and even this day, church is still my second home, and I still love it. THANK YOU to my parents who instilled this love of God’s house in me and my brothers. That being said I want my kids to have that same absolute love for the church, and it’s a battle. “God likens kids to arrows. In order for an arrow to fly straight and true, it must be sharpened and aimed. The Jews of Jesus’ day had a saying: ‘If we do not indelibly imprint God’s Word onto the bones of our children, we are one generation from extinction.” – Ken Blount. We can't just sit by and let the world take over when it comes to training our kids. But a lot of parents do and then wonder why their kids life is completely screwed up or why they are not walking in the fullness of what God has for them. We can’t afford not to make an investment in our kids and their thought lives, because no investment at all in their spiritual lives still equals an investment.



When I started the Children’s Church in Conway and took over the Nursery Ministry in Benton, automatically I felt the war brewing. It was literally a mantle (if you will) that fell around me. Now that I was partly responsible for these kids growth and future….. I became keenly aware of the plots out there for our kids’ lives. Make no mistake, the devil is out for our kids. He doesn’t play fair and he is using every trick in the book. With the worlds population being one-third under the age of 15, the world has a greater pull on our kids than the Church – it’s our job, duty, and privilege to pull back and to win. We are standing up at CPC and refusing to let Satan win. Our CPC kids WILL grow up with the Word strong in them, and NO plot being formed for their life will come to pass. They are mighty, they will stay in church, they will stand up for what they believe in school, they will be a light to those around them and they will serve God all the days of their lives….This is our battle cry.


I am sending out a Teacher Letter this next week – encouraging them and ministering to them. We have the best teachers in the whole world, I am quite sure. They make me so proud to be leader over this team and a part of the bigger CPC team. SOOOO you are getting a sneak peak of that letter. (if you are a teacher and reading this….open the letter next week and act surprised for me…. lol)

1) See the importance of Children’s Ministry and how much Weight it holds. ----- Children must be brought to the Lord. Obviously brought by their parents, but we want the kids to know that this is a place for them, and that we love them and want to be in their world.


2) Touch them when they are Young. ---- The world has perverted all forms of touch to children. Rub their heads, give them hugs, high 5’s, low 5’s. Physical touch is SO important, the kids will attach themselves to you, be conscience of that.


3) Make CPC (or your church) FUN!!!!!! ----- Trick them into learning by having a blast at church! They will beg to come when their parents are waffling on if they are going to church or not. They will invite their friends because CPC (or your church) is so awesome! Fun, Fun, Fun, coupled with the Word – you can’t and won’t lose. If children are not having fun, they probably aren’t learning…….


4) Teach them to do Right. ---- “We are fighting for our basic belief’s … we can’t afford to water down the truth.” – Ken Blount. Remember we are saving a generation.


5) Have Peace – Teach Peace. ---- “Peace is the Presence of God on the scene.” – Ken Blount. Children need to see peace working in their lives. We need to display peace in our classrooms, we don’t know what kind of home-life these kids have, let us be a beacon of hope and peace to them.


6) The Power of God marks You. ---- This generation MUST see the power of God. Pray for their tummy aches, sick animals, relatives, friends, bad dreams …..the Power of God will show up and they will remember when you prayed for them.


YES, I agree, super deep, but this has been in my spirit for a good 2 or 3 weeks and I felt it needed to be shared. If you work in Children’s ministry yourself, be encouraged, we win the war. Don’t quit when it gets hard, let me share a secret, I’ve been at CPC for 12 years, it will get hard. Devote yourself to this ministry, don’t let it become a side note, we….are….in….a….war!!! Stay focused!!! Have I learned everything about children’s ministry (GOD LORD NO!) I am a baby when it comes to this. BUT, I care deeply for the lives of the kids, and their families, and that right there is pretty darn important. I don’t take what I do lightly and it seriously frustrated and angers me when I see people do (remember that working on my love walk thing….. yeah). We don’t have all the time in the world, let’s get focused, let’s prepared, let’s get serious, let’s get dangerous (darkwing duck fans….that was for you)…….let’s get it together and get things done.

Let’s March……


Wednesday, September 14

Put Your Love Glasses on!

Walking in love….GOSH!!! It’s not the most popular or the easiest thing to do. I fail at it quite regularly, but the good thing is ….. I am working at getting better all the time. Thank GOD His mercies are new every morning, because I need it!!! There a song about putting your love glasses on, I will be keep those on my person at all times.  :)