Friday, August 18, 2017

Week one... DONE!


Today marked the last day of the first FULL WEEK of school for the goofballs!

A certain Z-Dogg was already passed out asleep - and these two were quickly heading that way!

Super proud of how hard they worked this week and more imprtantly - how they shined a bright light for HIM!

Way to knock out week one guys!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

We Won't Back Down


What was it D.R.S. said?

"Mama Didn't Raise No Punks"

And that's how we're rolling 'round here. No punks. No fear. Stand for what is right. Fight for those who can't.

Be BOLD and COURAGEOUS in HIS name!

So proud of this crew right here - these fierce fighters for justice.

Raising them to stand - in His name - when they see a wrong and be brave about it.

We're rolling Tom Petty style up in here...

We won't back down!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Why


"Tymm... why do you say some of the stuff you say online?"

"Why are you always advocating for some of the stuff you argue about?"

"Why are you willing to engage in all this stuff - it seems exhausting?"


This is why.

Right here... three solid reasons.

they are my "WHY"

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The Wii Is Back in Town!


We've never been huge video game players around here...

We have an original Xbox, an Xbox 360 and a Wii... and none of them have been hooked up.

Until Now!

These two goofballs have been jonesing for some Mario Kart... so tonight - on a promise of finished homework and stress free mornings - we hooked the Wii back up and they got a little Kart time before bedtime!

They were loving it!

Drive safe, girls... DRIVE SAFE!

Monday, August 14, 2017

6 Years of Mebbie!


August 14th... you know what today is...

IT'S MEBBIE DAY, BABY!

On this day - 6 years ago - little Mebski Love came up the escalator at the Atlanta airport and our family grew by one and we were all together!

We love celebrating the heck outta this day!

We usually kick it off by all watching this video:



And the sawdust in the air gets me every single time!

Then - the person we're celebrating gets to choose where we go for dinner!


Mebbie chose MOD Pizza and as we sat around eating we went around the table and we all looked Mebbie right in the eyes and told her all the things we loved about her and all the ways she has made our family awesome!


When we got home - it was time for some quick ice cream before bedtime because... well... MEBBIE DAY!


Mebbie - you are one special little girl!

One day - I hope you look back and see how hard we fought for you - how far your mommy went to go get you and stay with you when the government wasn't moving fast enough for her.

We needed you here, girl!

You are a joy, a peaceful presence, a smile that never ends and you were absolutely built to be where you are today.

Your family loves you more than you know girl... don't you ever forget it!

Happy Mebbie Day!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Will They Come Here, Daddy?


When I got home from running tonight - Z-Dogg was already snoozing - but these two were outside in their pajamas waiting for me.

I hugged 'em a little (actually a LOT) extra harder tonight. It's been a freaking crazy kind of weekend - with some harsh truths to process and some tough conversations.

Truthfully... pretty emotional for me as a daddy.

Earlier today - they caught like a millisecond of the news on our way out of the house and the inevitable question came:

"What's really going on in Charlottesville, daddy?
We're an honest crew around here - and so I spent a bit of time explaining what was going on - that some people can be super mean and don't like people who don't look like them and they were protesting and things got out of hand.

Meron knew somebody had been killed - and I told them a a bit about that young girl and what she was doing.

And then Mebbie asked it:
"Will they come here, daddy? The mean people?"
It caught me off guard... and coupled with the look on her face - a look of fear mixed with sadness - it just nailed me.

DAMN YOU, WORLD! WHY ARE WE SO DANG FALLEN?

This sweet, innocent 8-year old shouldn't have to know this stuff.

I pulled it together and hugged that girl for what seemed like forever.... she needs to know she's safe.

But she's also knowledgeable now... we don't stay naive around here.


I told her that I HOPED we wouldn't see anything like that here but that if we did - mommy and I have their back so hard - that we are always here and as long as daddy has breath in his lungs - protecting my goofball crew is a top priority!

She's also got this CRAZY PROTECTIVE big sister.

Meron is kinda like me - maybe to a fault - ready to spring into action and pounce on anybody trying to come at her people wrong!


And I think Mebbie finds some peace in that for sure!

We prayed big prayers tonight before bedtime.

Prayers for peace, justice, love... and an end to all the hate.

And the strength to be a family that will ALWAYS stand up for what is right - no matter what the circumstances are.

We headed off to sleep with the hope that Jesus brings us and the peaceful understanding that...

God is still on His throne!

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Yee Haw, Princess!


Mebski Love got to go to a friend's birthday party today that was a Princess Cowgirl theme!

Fairy wings and riding horses!

She was pumped up!


What a perfect way to spend an afternoon for a girl with an imagination like Mebbie has!

Thankful for cool friends with fun personalities!

Looking good ya Princess Cowgirl, you!

Friday, August 11, 2017

Cleaner Than It's EVER Been!


On her day off the other day from school - Meron looked at Laura and said:

"I want to clean the hall bathroom... I am going to make it cleaner than it has ever been!"
We always tell them if they wanna earn some spending $$ - they can jump in and help out...

And help out she did!


This girl scrubbed the HECK outta that room - and even cleaned the toilet!

What, what, what?!?!


Daddy's proud of you girl for taking the initiative to help out like that - you certainly earned those dollars ya scored!

Which room is next?

Thursday, August 10, 2017

An Absolute Joy!


That's what she is!

And sometimes ya just have to state it!

I see you Mebbie... and I see the joy and happiness you bring to so many around you!

Keep being who you are, girl! It's a blessing to your daddy and it honors your Father!

She's got the joy, joy, joy, joy... down in her heart!

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

He Did It!


I am super proud of this little man today.

He finished his first (short) week of school!

It didn't come super easy though.

His little heart was missing his mommy time - so much so that last night he was crying over some "phantom leg pain" while asking Laura this:

"If my leg hurts do I have to go to school?"
Come to find out he was making up a big story to try and get out of school already.

And while we have a pretty harsh zero-tolerance policy on lying 'round here... I unleashed some grace on this one cuz I could tell just how much he was dealing with.

We had a great chat tonight about who God built him to be - that we believed He had GREAT plans for the Z-Dogg... and to accomplish those plans - going to school was super important!

Grace abounded... we group hugged it out and then played golf in the basement!

How all first weeks of school should end!

Daddy is super proud of you, Zechie!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Boldy and Courageously Truthful


Man - those are three things it's kinda hard to be sometimes, aren't they?

Know where they can be especially difficult to pull off?

In the church.

We recently had a church experience that ranks up their with some of the messiest, ugliest, meanest experiences we have ever walked through (that's a whole other post at some point)...

We finally extracted our family outta there and are now looking in the rear view mirror at it and slowly recovering - but one thing that hit me hard during it was this,,,

People are afraid to confront the church when something is off.

Whether it's bad teaching, weak leadership, poor theology or all of the above - people are more prone to remain silent even while acknowledging it or to leave the church without ever saying anything than they are to speak up and hope and pray for change.

Call me naive.

Call me ignorant to church structure, governance or political structure... but I find this insane.

"Come on Tymm..." ya might say.

"Why can't you just leave well enough alone and go somewhere else if you don't like it?"

Here's three reasons why I simply can't just "shut up and color"... or walk away apathetically.


Am I supposed to teach this little dude here to cower in the face of untruths?

To fearfully waver when he knows the Spirit is talking to him?

NO WAY!

My job is to model a biblical strength and confidence to demonstrate that when the Holy Spirit moves in us we should be bold and proud to hear Him and move with Him.


And what about this girl here?

Should I show off fear to her?

Give her a pattern of behavior that pushes her to silence when she recognizes wrongs?

ABSOLUTELY NOT!

God gave her a heart for justice and the bravery she will need in her life to stand for what is right and fight injustices has to be modeled and shaped and encouraged by the demonstration of courage - even when it goes against what everybody else is doing....


And finally - what about this truth teller here?

Should I be a living example of how to quiet oneself in the face of untruths? How to pander to people and fall in line like somebody that wasn't given a mind and heart and discernment to know Him well?

Should I model a behavior for her that says "We stay quiet when we see a wrong or we just run from it - never confront it."

NO WAY, NO HOW.

Guys... as long as daddy has breath in my lungs it's my goal to help you understand who you are in HIM and to give you the courage and strength to be bold in recognizing and standing for truth.

Guess what... it's not always the easy route.

You'll be judged.

You'll be hated.

You'll be outcast and treated weird for it.

But ya know what? So was Jesus. You guys keep doing this anyways and remember you're always in good company... and mommy and daddy ALWAYS have your back!

Now go out there and be bold, courageous truth tellers for Him!

Monday, August 7, 2017

They Killed It!


This crew was looking dapper as they headed out the door for their first day of school!


We had the confident fourth grader!


The excited third grader!


And the pumped but but slightly nervous kindergartner!


From what I heard from their excited mouths this evening - they had a GREAT day and loved their new teachers!

And they were wiped out tonight too... a full day of school is a tough thing after a summer full of sleeping in and playing!

Great day today guys - and daddy is super proud of all three of ya!

Way to kick the year off!

Sunday, August 6, 2017

'Twas the Night Before a New Season...


Tomorrow starts a new season 'round this camp...

All three goofballs will be in school!

What, what, what!?!?!

So tonight - before they hit the sack early for some good sleep - we prayed some seriously strong prayers over these beautiful little heads!

Prayers for courage, strength, confidence, wisdom, discernment, bravery, boldness...

Prayers that they would go out and be BRIGHT LIGHTS FOR JESUS (our every school day chant)...

We basically handed them over to God and said:

"Use them Lord... use them for Your honor and glory."

Thing is... He already has... and we can't wait to see how He continues that in their lives.


Then Mommy got their uniforms all set out and squared away and she couldn't stop the tears!

We've been so thankful that we have been able to make it work for her to stay home with these guys for the last 5 or so years...

And now - her little sidekick is all grown up and off to kindergarten!

I didn't really expect it - but I got all choked up while I was praying too.

I don't know why I didn't see it coming - every time these guys hit a lifetime milestone... it nails me.

All three of them have overcome so much in their short lives - and they do it with smiles and love.

Each milestone drives home to me how much our God loves redemption and how He is in the business of redeeming us all!


Finally - we also prayed for them to "stay goofy and crazy!"

To never take themselves too seriously - to love fiercely and stay true to who they are...

And to remember our other daily chant before school:

I yell, "What's the time?"

And they all answer back in unison: "It's time to get ill!"

To everything... turn, turn, turn...

There is a season.... turn, turn, turn...

Go get 'em guys!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Ya Gotta Start Somewhere


We've always wanted to be the camping type of crew...

So on "Prime Day" this year - Mommy scored a wicked awesome deal on this tent that is apparently half the size of our house!

And well... ya gotta start somewhere - so we popped it up in the basement tonight to see what we were dealing with!


After about 45 minutes of wrestling with it - we found out that...

THIS THING IS HUGE!


And I know a few goofballs who were SUPER STOKED about giving this thing a whirl in the outdoors!

So the plan is to swallow our mountain lion and bear fears and give this camping thing a try here soon!


In the meantime - these two are giving it a test run tonight indoors - free of potential furry attackers!


Sleep tight campers...

Soon... we venture outside!

Friday, August 4, 2017

Zonked Out


Those are the toes of one tired little homie!


This is what ya get when ya run around a new park with friends for hours in the hot sun!


I dunno... I kinda like it!

Can we do this EVERY weekend?


You played hard and deserve the rest buddy!

Rest up Z-Dogg... God knows Mommy and I are!

Thursday, August 3, 2017

My Little Rider


This girl here... she's as comfortable being a fancy princess with make up and lipstick on as she is being daddy's girl getting dirty on a ride...

I love it!

Stay you, Meron... and never change!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The Performers


These girls here... they LOVE to put on a show!

Tonight's was a dance routine choreographed by Meron that told a story of two girls and their lives intersecting...

I'll apologize now - I didn't get many pictures cuz I was too busy watching it!

So take my word for it - they nailed it!


I love the way these two are together.

Sisters to the core... and best friends at the same time!

GREAT performance, girls!

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

My Peoples


I would walk on burning coals with a mountain lion chasing me while listening to New Kids on the Block for this crew.

I just love 'em that much.

Thanks for being my peoples!