Friday, April 12, 2024



Josh and I were in Honduras during our twenty two year anniversary. And it just so happened that we had a two day period between visiting our missionaries so we decided to take advantage of the time and spend a few days together on the beach outside of La Ceiba. We are always a year or two behind the big years (like 15 and 20 year celebrations) but we'd been saving up for just the right time. So our 20-year get-away on our 22 year anniversary sounded perfect, lol.

It was GORGEOUS! We practically had the beach to ourselves. Our hotel room had mountains on one side and beach on the other. We had no agenda. We slept a lot. We read a lot. And enjoyed the tropical sunshine.

Oh, and we got matching tattoos! Don't worry, it was friend recommended and she even went with us. We made new friends that night as we watched a huge futbol game and got inked! Josh found the coordinates of the building where we first met on our college campus that we tattooed on our arms. Nothing says Happy Anniversary like spontaneous, matching tattoos!

United 2024

United is a gathering of many student ministries in the area. They come together for a weekend of worship, serving and discipleship. Josh and I were invited to lead with some of our new friends, The McCray Brothers, for the worship segments and it was amazing. This was the ninth year for United, but the first year Josh and I have participated. We loved getting to see, and be a small part, of something our kids have been a part of over the years. Rainy came and helped with the merch table and Zeke, Alethia and Cai participated. Jude will be there next year which is crazy! 

This year was hosted at Southeastern. 27 different churches were represented within the over 750 students present. The energy was electric, the Holy Spirit was moving and I pray that lives were changed forever. What an honor it was to be able to worship together. Music is such a gift. And to be able to share it with other brothers and sisters in Christ, whether in the band with us, or joining with their voices all around a room, is priceless. If your student ministry is looking to unite with other churches I encourage you to look into joining United next year!

Photo credit goes to one of our friends who is by far one of the best photographers we personally know! If you need photos taken for your own family or event you need to check him out! Tyler Sales Creative

March Recap

 March was probably the craziest month we've had in a WHILE! Josh and I played lots of music, we traveled out of the country, we celebrated our 22 year anniversary...all within one month! Not to mention all of the normal life things that occupy our time. We really try to make it a practice to live our lives with a lot of margin and white space, but sometimes things just happen to stack up and make for a super full month. So, although this is not a pace we want to try to figure out how to sustain, we certainly were filled up with the things the Lord allowed us to be a part of this month.

Here are a few pictures we want to remember this month before I go into all the details!

Easter with fam at Seven Marks Church was beautiful

We had a visit from Uncle Ray and he tagged along with us to soccer practices and a chapel service

Zeke has picked up guitar and been consistently practicing and asking for new things from Josh every day.

Cai made the track team at his school.
He runs the 1600 (1 mile) and has set a PR every track meet so far!

Jude decided to set up a lemonade stand at the park so he could make some money for some inline skates to play hockey. He may have gotten the Rolesville cops called on him (insert eye roll) and kicked out of the park, but not before a lady gave him her business card to an event she is part of at a local school. She told Jude they love kids and their ideas and would love for him to come set up a stand at the event!

I have been working on my garden area and Alethia had the best idea to set up some solar lights and I LOVE it! And guess what? I even have kale and romaine lettuce growing (from LAST YEAR!) that we made a salad with for dinner this week! There may be hope for the garden this year afterall

Our worship team wrote an original song for Easter this year.
You may remember me writing about the recording of it last month.
It released just in time for our church body to learn it so we could belt it out on Easter morning together. You can go stream it on all major music platforms by searching Seven Marks Worship.

Friday, March 29, 2024

Awaken My Soul

 I'm finally sitting in my own home this morning after a couple of (life giving) weeks of traveling. 

It's Good Friday today. Typically our Holy Week is filled with devotions and activities leading up to Resurrection Sunday, but this year has looked a little  lot different. And so it is as kids get older and seasons change (and you go out of the country and then out of town for spring break).

So I headed outside to have some sun and Jesus time. I opened my Bible and it just didn't feel right to pick up in Ezekiel where my Bible reading plan currently has me. I decided I'd read the accounts of Good Friday in the gospels.

I opened up to Matthew, found the night of the plot to kill Jesus, and picked it up from there. I got about halfway through the account of the woman who poured oil on the feet of Jesus and I just felt this inclination to stop and pray. The words that kept coming to mind were "awaken my soul".

So I began to pray for my own soul to wake up. For my eyes to be opened to what these words were portraying. To wake up to the gravity of the cross. Taking it from merely a story I read and hear about all the time, to an actual event in history that has forever changed my life. Changed the world. It is so deeply personal and I wanted God to help me FEEL it again.

I lingered there for a minute before the Lord began bringing other people to mind. Dear friends and family members. I felt a heaviness to pray for an awakening of their souls to the freedom and life and peace that is made possible because of what we celebrate on Easter.

And this is my prayer:

For those of you who are weary in life, feeling like the world is spinning all around you and you cannot catch your breathe...

May your soul be awakened.

For those of you who have the faith but it feels as though it is asleep, lying dormant, and you cannot find your bearings...

May your soul be awakened.

For those of you who have been hurt, disappointed, and feel jaded by those in Christ's community and simply don't know who to trust...

May your soul be awakened.

For those of you who have been through the unimaginable and feel forgotten and unheard by the God who you have cried out to...

May your soul be awakened.

For those of you who have lost faith but are still searching for something...

May your soul be awakened.

For those who have never really started a personal relationship with this God who sent his only son to die on our behalf...

May your soul be awakened.

I'm praying for you today. I'm praying for me today. That we can experience Him in a way that opens our eyes and awakens our souls.

Friday, March 8, 2024

The Greatest Victory

Our team from Seven Marks wrote an original song for Easter this year.
We put our buddy Travis Motley on the project with his studio at Diamond Productions
to place his creative touch on it and it is sounding amazing. It should be up on Spotify soon!

Josh and I took Patience and Zeke and headed down to Kannapolis for a day in the studio.
I'm not sure which was more fun, the actual car ride with one of my best friends talking about everything from food and politics to parenting and unexpected life turns. 

Zeke came along too and experienced a day in the studio for the first time.
We needed him to capture some b-roll.
I think he was pretty impressed and came back creatively motivated! 
Travis was so sweet to take the time to pour into Zeke as he asked all sorts of questions about owning a business and even equipment and the ins and outs of having a studio.

We got the vocals and violin laid down as well as some great B-roll and headed back home.
As soon as we got home Josh put out a quick email to our team to invite them over for food and gang vocals. We had a great turnout, even with the last minute notice. 

We'll let you know when the song drops! 

Wednesday, March 6, 2024

February Milestones and Memories


Josh was supposed to run the Umstead Trail Marathon last year but had a knee injury and had to defer to this year. He said this was so much more difficult than the Richmond Marathon he did because of the trails. His goal was to make it in five hours. He crossed the finish line with 4 minutes to spare! I got to meet him at the finish line since it was local.

If you know Zeke at all you know that he always has to be working on some kind of project. His current project obsession is turning our basement into a workout room. He went to Home Depot and bought some supplies to finish walls and paint. He has spent hours down there cleaning it up and it really does look nice! Now, to save for some equipment!

The kids asked if they could invite some friends over for the Super Bowl. I absolutely LOVE when the house if full of teenagers and kids. And their friends have awesome moms who always come through with extra snacks and drinks to add to what we've got to feed the masses. I'm pretty sure Josh and I were the only ones that watched the first half, but by the half-time show came around the kids were into it. 

Cai got a haircut. Yup, you read that right. He hadn't had a haircut in probably seven (or more) years. I was shocked when he came and asked if he could cut it because it was starting to drive him crazy in his face, especially when he was playing sports. So I made an appointment (This one is kind of a big one. Mama ain't gonna be responsible for this cut!) and he went through with it. Smiles and all.
The final pictures were right after getting home after the haircut so the curls hadn't even taken form yet, but it is so curly and so cute! I love it. And he does too!

A Full February

 We had such a full February. 
Both Rainy (turned 19) and Jude (turned 12) had birthdays this month.

After Jude and Josh returned back from Guatemala several of the team members began getting sick. And sure enough both of my boys were down for the count within 48 hours. Josh's whatever-it-was lasted nearly the entire month. Poor Jude was so cold and chilled that he couldn't get enough layers to keep warm.

Alethia has thoroughly enjoyed her science class with my dad this year. Nearly every Wednesday evening I'll find her showing Josh what she learned that day:)

Zeke is so thoughtful sometimes! One morning he must have been in the mood to cook and made ALL of us breakfast. Even his older sister who hadn't even gotten out of bed yet. I love these little snapshots of sweetness.

Sports, sports, sports!

Cai finished up his indoor soccer season just as he and Jude's outdoor season kicked off. Jude's basketball season has been so strange. They began in November but their 8 games have been spread across 4 months. He actually has his last game tonight! Cai also wanted to try out for he school track team and made it! He is enjoying keeping in shape for soccer with running. And if that weren't enough, hockey keeps the boys active and happy in their spare time. And then there is the every present pull ups and dead hangs around the house.

Josh had gotten us tickets to see Nickel Creek for my birthday so we got to go enjoy phenomenal music together this month.

There were some other sweet moments I couldn't help but capture this month. Josh was dancing with Andi before a rehearsal one night, Josh and Cai watching the sunset together and Cai passed out on the couch after a long week of all the things.