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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Elf on the Shelf & Goodbye Magic

I did it. I FINALLY did it! I got my very own Elf on a Shelf!

I really wanted one last year but kept putting it off. Not anymore. We adopted Twinkle from Hands Mall today.

My kids are SOOOOO excited! Truth be told, I'm SOOO excited!

I wonder how much mischief she will get into? Hey, does this mean I finally have someone to blame my mess on??


In other news, today also had a sad note. I posted last year about the magic of Christmas slowly fading away. Well, today was THAT day. The day when childhood dreams give way to reality. The day when fantasy becomes a thing of the past. The day I have been dreading.......

Austin no longer believes in Santa. :(

We have been inching around this subject for quite a while now. He has asked repeatedly if Santa was real. I always respond with "what do you think?". Then, depending on his answer, I go from there.

I think he may have stopped believing long before now if he didn't have "proof". He received Rudolph's autograph a few years back. That was the icing on the cake for him!

So when he asked tonight & I responded the same way I always do, for the first time, he said he didn't think Santa was real. I asked him why he thought that way. Very straight forward & with a lot of consideration, he informed me that Santa couldn't visit everyone in one day and reindeer can't fly.

I smiled with tears in my eyes & told him he was right. He was only a little sad and he promised to keep the magic alive for Makenzie & Logan as long as he could!

He's a trooper, that little boy who continually grows up on me no matter how hard I try to stop him!

The magic of Christmas isn't in a fat man in a red suit. It isn't in a sparkly tree. It isn't in more presents than you know what to do with. The real magic is in family, love, laughter, memories, & traditions.

How about making a little magic this holiday season!

Friday, November 16, 2012

I Like my Dust Bunnies

Emotions run strong in the Bauguess household. We love passionately. We fight fiercely. We laugh uncontrollably. We stand up for what we believe in. We rarely back down.

We give it our all or we don't bother doing it.

The characteristics are already starting to show in our children. I'm not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing. Hmmm~ bad now, good later most likely.

Anyway, after a particularly emotional day on all ends, Justin & I discussed the pressure & expectations of our new normal. It's good to share your hopes, your dreams, your fears, & your burdens with those you love.

I admitted, very reluctantly I might add, that every "pastor's house" that we had ever been too was always spotless. HOW can I keep up with that??? That's just one more plate that I have to keep spinning with the hopes that none go crashing to the ground.

He hugged me & laughed. Then he said, "when have we ever been normal?"

Haha I'm so glad he gets me!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tales of a Homeschool Nothing ~ Second Chances

We had a slight glitch this morning during school.

I told my kids that if they did their work right until a certain time, then they could go to the cattle sale with their grandparents. They were both so excited with this because they love everything about farm life.

All was going well until I discovered something. It wasn't anything big, but it truly annoyed me. I asked who did it & of course, their response was "not me". (When I find "not me", he's in for it! That mysterious kid has plagued me for years!) After a few more minutes of questioning, I finally announced that they were both getting spankings because someone was lying to me.

Austin finally admitted to the deed in question.

Of course, I was aggravated & I had to punish him. When that was over, I left him in his room for a little while. When I went back in with my Child Training Bible to talk to him, I was amazed at the peace that washed over me. (I'm very sad to say that I usually have to blow my top before I can calm down & deal with what went wrong. Don't get me wrong, I still raised my voice, but it was different this time.)


We sat down & discussed what had happened & what made him choose to lie. I was able to show him what God says about lying. I was able to admit to him that I have done the same thing before. I was able to explain to him how the God we serve is a God of love, of wrath, of forgiveness, & of second chances. We read, we cried, we prayed, & we hugged.

I struggled with whether to allow him to still go with his grandparents, but in the end, mercy won out.

Because of his disobedience & my obedience, God was able to mend hearts & teach us both a lesson.

I am so thankful that God gives me more than just one chance!



A True Celebration

As I looked in the mirror this morning, the first thing that I noticed was my swollen puffy eyes & I was thankful for them.

You see, my eyes are swollen from a very emotional day yesterday. I had the honor of attending the most beautiful funeral I have ever seen. Yes, funerals are sad occasions, BUT they hold so much promise in them. If you are a child of God, this is not "good bye", its only "see you in the morning."

I can honestly say that I have never witnessed a funeral quite like this. Yes, there were tears, but there was also rejoicing, testifying, & people begging for sinners to be saved.

This dear man & his wife have been huge influences on me throughout the years. I enjoyed many hours in their home & under their leadership. Their daughter was one of my best friends growing up. And even though I haven't seen them as often as I would like recently, they have never been far from my heart.

The tears started flowing the moment I walked into the church and though they aren't a steady stream, they are bubbling up just under the surface even now. As I hugged Daniel, and he thanked me for coming, I told him that I wouldn't have missed this home going for anything. Amanda & I just fell into each others arms & I reminded her of our childhood joke "the 3 hairs on top of the shiny head of my Diddy". We just cried.

Then there was Mary, sweet Mary. Always smiling, always gracious. She embraced me and said "my precious Tracie" and told me how undeserving she was of my admiration. She then took a few minutes to encourage me to always support my husband in his ministry and remind me just how blessed I was to be a pastor's wife.

Can you believe it???? This new widow is encouraging me!! Isn't it supposed to be the other way around???

Well, if you know Mary, it's no surprise. When I picture the Proverbs 31 woman, I see Mary! I know she is not perfect, but she is just about as close as one can get on this earth.

Thinking back down through the years, I have many fond memories of Larry, Mary, Amanda, & Daniel. Church trips, sleep overs, haunted houses, hide & seek, passing notes when we should be paying attention, jumping on the trampoline late at night, boys, birthday parties, Carowinds, dances, weddings, & words upon words of wisdom.

I was on the phone with Amanda when her bedroom lamp exploded & she freaked out because she just knew her house was haunted. We weren't even teenagers yet.

I remember just how hard Amanda took it when Mary surrendered to God's will by only wearing skirts. She thought we would never get to go to Carowinds again.

I remember how Daniel used to aggravate us to no end. But that's what little brothers are for.

I remember being scared to death of their dog. We would always wait until he wasn't around and then run for our lives.

I remember thinking how intimidating Larry always looked when he was in uniform, but then I was one of the ones lucky enough to know he was actually a teddy bear with a heart of gold. I loved hearing him preach but I could never sympathize with being a preacher's kid.

Mary called me a few years ago after I sent her a gift that wasn't worth anything of monetary value. We talked for what seemed like hours. She was the one who told me how proud she was of me for homeschooling my children. She has always been the one to tell me to follow God, support my husband, & love my babies.

I could sit here forever telling stories of how much this family has meant to me.

It never really dawned on me that these saints were getting older. I wish that could have spent a few more hours with Larry before he died. I hope to be able to sit down and spend time with Mary soon. She has so much more to teach me.

Yesterday, I wasn't crying because death had claimed another life. I was rejoicing over a saint getting promoted. I was reminiscing many happy hours spent in love. I was concerned over an empty place at the dinner table & a huge hole left in hearts. I was also somewhat envious of Larry sitting at our savior's feet. I was curious to see who would be willing to take up his mantle & run for our Lord.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

20 More Years

Just like most of America, I watched the election results last night with a prayer on my lips & a burden on my heart. I can honestly say that I am glad it is over. I am tired of the lies from all parties. I am tired of the promises that have no intention of being kept. I am tired of the hate. I am tired of the unnecessary spending. I am tired of the phone calls.

Today, post election, reality sets in. Its not about me or you. Its not about red or blue. Its not about your candidate or mine. Its not about victory of defeat. Its about America. Its about our future. Its about our children. Its about remembering what this country was founded on.

Yes, we all have the freedom to pick, choose, live, & worship how we wish. But our founding fathers were not running FROM religion or God, they were running TO Him. They knew that they would never be free to live for Him if they stayed where they were. They had enough fear, enough courage, & enough respect to fight for God & everything they held dear to their hearts.

What has happened in 200 years? People say that we have gotten wiser, that we are better off now than we were then. I'll agree that we have made many advancements & we have come a long way, but we most certainly are not wiser! Oh, people may be smarter, but having knowledge doesn't mean you know what to do with it!

2 Chronicles 1:8 "And Solomon said unto God, Thou hast shewed great mercy unto David my father, and hast made me to reign in his stead.
9 Now, O Lord God, let thy promise unto David my father be established: for thou hast made me king over a people like the dust of the earth in multitude.
10 Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, that is so great?
11 And God said to Solomon, Because this was in thine heart, and thou hast not asked riches, wealth, or honour, nor the life of thine enemies, neither yet hast asked long life; but hast asked wisdom and knowledge for thyself, that thou mayest judge my people, over whom I have made thee king:
12 Wisdom and knowledge is granted unto thee; and I will give thee riches, and wealth, and honour, such as none of the kings have had that have been before thee, neither shall there any after thee have the like."

We are living in a generation that has forsaken & forgotten God. Gone are the days when even the town drunk went to church on Sundays. Gone are the days when you turned your radio down when passing a church. Gone are the days of "Yes Ma'am" & "No Sir". Gone are the days when the house of God was sacred & Christians stood, that's right, STOOD, for what they believed in. We are a few short years away from little country churches shutting their doors for good.

We have too many parents without a backbone. They want to be their child's friend. They want them to have all the latest fashions (even if it means their daughters look like prostitutes), all the newest gadgets (even if it means that no one talks anymore, they only text), & more opportunities & commitments than there are hours in the day for (even if it means they never see each other). They want to allow them the freedom to worship, or not, how they choose.

I'm sorry, this may sound cliche, but as long as my kids live in my house, they WILL respect me, they WILL do what I say, or there WILL be consequences!

WAKE UP AMERICA! Get back on your knees. Pray for your family, your church, your country, your leaders, & most importantly, the lost!

We are only a generation away from Christianity becoming so scarce it can only be found in the history books. We have continually turned our backs on God. His wrath won't hold out forever.

2 Chronicles 7:14 "If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

I've heard it more than one time recently. America's hope is not in a donkey or an elephant. America's hope lies in the LAMB!