Wednesday, November 30, 2011

a poem

...that Mark wrote and included in the advent book. =)

O night which teemed with heaven's hymns
That spoke of prophecies fulfilled-
A newfound song was ushered in
Of peace on earth and of goodwill.

For years the earth had ached and yearned,
Awaiting God to speak and send
An answer to our prayers and turn
Our eyes and anxious cries to him.

So on that silent, holy night,
The world, unknowing, did receive
That promised source of true delight
That simply asks us to believe.

Unlike the keeper of the inn,
May we make room for Mary's son.
He knocks and longs to dwell within
Our hearts and make them with his, one.

O Christ, who in the manger lay,
We humbly make a lone request:
Be born within our hearts today
And to our weary souls bring rest.

Advent Sunday #1

So... a little late, but Mark made up an Advent devotional guide for our church, and I'm super proud of him and it, and wanted to share. =)

Week 1 - "God has Spoken, Not Through Words"

Scripture: John 1/1

What a blessing it is that we worship a God who communicates and desires connection with us. There are so many ways in which God chooses to reveal himself. We clearly see him revealed through the beauty of his creation. We are extradordinarily blessed to have the Bible, God's inspired written word that communicates so much of his heart and desires for us. Yet, in some ways, the revelation of God in his Word is still incomplete. The Old Testament speaks of the coming Christ often, and the Messiah was the center of the worship, rituals, and celebrations of the Israelites. Ultimately, the person of Jesus Christ - his teachings, life, death, and resurrection - is the fullest and most complete revelation of the heart of God that has been made known to us. He is literally God's Word living in the flesh of a man.

No matter how familiar we are with the Christmas Story, the arrival of the divine Christ to our mortal world is still an undeniably complex idea. Scholars have debated and have been divided throughout the centuries, attempting to explain this idea of God's Word becoming flesh - a being who was "fully God and fully man." In reponse to this unique and powerful distinction, the historical celebration of Christmas has always had two parts: the Nativity and the Epiphany. The Nativity, a celebration and feast that has occured for centuries within the church, ephasizes the human nature of Christ. This is why the Nativity is most associated with the infant Jesus in the lowly manger. The Epiphany, another Christmastime traditional celebration, usually occurs after December 25th. Historically, this feast day emphasizes the divine nature of Christ, typically involving elements such as the Magi from the East bringing gifts to the newborn King of Heaven.

Advent is a beautiful time of year - the annual rememberance of the marvelous and mysterious union of mortal and divine, of God and man. It is an incredbile thing to know that God, the Almighty Creator of the universe, cares so much for his creation that he "made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men" (Phil 2:7) And, how amazing it is that Christ - the one that displays the fullness of the heart of God - desires a vibrant and engaging relationship with us here on earth. As we begin our journey through this mysterious and joyful season of Advent, let this knowledge of God's desire for communication and connection be our foundation. Despite all of our familiarity and all the distractions that accompany Christmastime, may we never cease to be utterly humbled by these truths and Christ's desire to know us deeply.

What ideas that accompany Christmas have become familiar or stagnant to you over the years? How should this idea of God's son coming to earth continually change and shape you? How will you battle complacency and familiarity amid the distractions of Christmas this year?

See the eternal Son of God
A mortal Son of man;
Dwelling in an earthly clod,
Whom heaven cannot contain!
Stand amazed, ye heavens, at this!
See the Lord of earth and skies;
Humbled to the dust he is,
And in a manger lies.
- Charles Wesley

Sunday, November 27, 2011


Last night I dreamt in Harry Potter..wizards, Ron, Harry, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named..the whole shebang.

I like to compare this to dreaming in another means your finally getting it, your immersed, connected.

Yep-that's me. Connected, immersed, addicted.

That's all.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Today I am thankful for

1. morning runs with my mama.
2. three cups of coffee in the morning. =)
3. the memory power of my fingers as I struggle through an old Disney piano book.
4. my daddy singing on Sunday.
5. being in pajamas at noon.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Today I am thankful that I am packing my bags to leave to California for a week! HOOOORAAYYYY family, ocean, trivia night, warm(er) weather, the best thanksgiving food in the world, etc, everything.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

thankful~day 17

Today I am thankful that my car started...

...........since it didn't yesterday.

But, really, truly, soo thankful it is working today. And hopeful it will continue to semi-run at least through the cold part of this year.

(also thankful for brussel sprouts and parsnips...have I ever tasted you before?)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Thankful-Day 16

Thankful for last minute prayer meetings.
For devoted followers, hearts knitted to yours, voices pleading for your healing power and encompassing peace.
Thankful for faithful husbands that guard, protect, and love their wifes dearly.
Thankful to be apart of such gatherings, to know men like the one mentioned above....thankful.

Monday, November 14, 2011


Today I am thankful for the Hunger Games trailer.

and dinner with Uncle Jeff.

and a husband who shares my heart, but not my emotionalism (that a word?)

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Middle School Lock-In

All the funnest music you could ever imagine.
150+ kids.
Lots of animated movies.
Nachos, Pizza, Red Vines, Caramel Apples, Caramel Popcorn and... 25 two liters of soda.
Just Dance, Just Dance, Just Dance
some problems sharing
PDA and PDA bans
Flash Mob
crushes formed, numbers exchanged

....a good reason to sleep until 12:30 this afternoon. ....

Friday, November 11, 2011

Thankful- Day 11

Today I am thankful that my husband gets to work as a teacher.

He is 1) a really dedicated and awesome teacher and
2) absolutely loves it, and it is so awesome to find oneself in a career you adore.
3) being Mrs. Coop/Mama Coop is fun. =) I like visiting my babes in his work place.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thankful~ Day 10

Today I am thankful that I had a three day break from my students. It's nice to re-organize everything in the classroom and closet, to re-focus a bit.

Thankful for this break, and hoping it makes me a more cheerful teacher come Monday am.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I've already posted a "thankful" thought today...but let me add

CHRISTMAS music. basking in it lately.

Specifically Andrew Peterson's Behold the Lamb of God. Check out the album, and specifically the track that holds the albums name...beautiful.

I grew up in a very musical family. My dad has been a music guy/ (official title nowadays "Creative Arts Pastor) his whole life. My mom is a phenomenal pianist (and singer!). She taught us all three to play...and everyone in my family plays at least 2 instruments. When I was little my sis and dad and I travelled around to different churches and sang songs. It's a vague memory...but a cherished one. At times the one song I remember pop in my head... "I love puppy dogs and kitty cats and cows that go moo..." My parents have even written a children's play entitled "Indiana James and the Lost Crusade". Don't worry-smash hit. =)

Being that my roots are so dang musical...I usually can hold my own in a music type of conversation. But then there's Mark....and I sure can NOT hold my own with him. But I soooo love it, love his heart and ear for music. He understands the conceptual aspects of all music he listens to. Dang, impressive!

In Peterson's album, Mark pointed out to me a melody added to one song to foreshadow another. Something I would never hear by myself.

Mark has recently started listening to a band called Thrice that had a concept album similar to Jon Foreman's Winter, Summer, Fall, Spring, the four cd's are Water, Earth, Air, Fire. All the songs on their respective albums sound like the element. Really neat...don't necessarily love it all, but cool idea. The last song in each album is a sonnet in iambic pentameter (impressive), with the last two lines ending as a couplet. All the couplet's in the four different cd's have the same melody.

Of course, I didn't figure annnnyyy of that out on my own. But Mark did. And ya, he's kind of a nerd, but I certainly appreciate the music so much more when I realize how much work went into making it.

Andddd all that to say....thankful for my Mark's amazing love for music and literature, and that he passes on that knowledge to me. =)
I'm all nostalgic today.

I don't know if it's because of the music I'm listening too, the slow change in weather towards winter, the fast approaching holidays...

Maybe it's that Mark's stepmom passed away last week.
Maybe it's that the time is growing nearer, impending big change is looming around the corner of our life.

New beginnings, good endings. Growth, change, responsibility, frustration, love, dear ones, worries, excitement, boredom, restlessness, mediocrity, pressure, delight, intimacy, expectation, desire.

I don't know...all here. Right below the surface.

And I don't know what to do with it all. Where to funnel all this feeling.

Change. Chane looming, change now. Change as we figure out how to love each other the best. How to invest in what seems like the 10 communities were apart of. How to be true, good friends to those we truly love. How to hold close our families that live so far away and so far apart from each other.

How to's and questions and change and desire and growth and responsibility and so much passion I don't know what to do with it all so I scream out the songs in my car, and I run as hard as I can at the gym, and I devour the literature I'm reading and I look for more....more ways/opportunities to express.

And I don't know what all that means. But-blah-there it is.

With longing, passion, questions, and an unquenchable desire for... more

Thankful-Day 9

Today I am thankful for me time.

For 2 hour work-outs, jamming to Taylor Swift songs (thanks babe for downloading my jams for me), heck...time to put lotion on. It's the little things... =)

Monday, November 7, 2011


Today I am thankful for loooong talks with old friends. Can't wait 'til the next one!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Father of the Bride...I and II

Last month Mark and I watched Father of the Bride. I cried from the first second of that movie to the last. Seriously. What is it about that tune? About Steve Martin? About his crazy passion, and tender fatherly love?

Soooo my dad. Just adore it...turns me into mush.

And now I am watching Father of the Bride II. And again...the little tune...the tears...the "hi daddys" and the tears...

Classic. Love.


Today I am thankful for

1. choirs
2. music
3. my multi-generational church
4. I can text Nick Elder when I think I've left my curling iron on and he'll run downstairs and unplug it. that is ridiculous.
5. for games like King's Cup
6. for extra babysitting money.
7. for airplanes that allow us to be near our family however quickly we need to be.
8. I can read music, and clap out a rhythm to any combination of notes.
9. CHRISSSTTTMASSSS is in the air. (at least my air)
10. for a home to come back to, whenever we want, in HOPE Community Church. Now that's something to hang your hat on.
11. idioms. =)

Friday, November 4, 2011

I guess I'm looking forward to HIS Kingdom coming. Looking forward to all people being equal, being treated equal, and living equally.

I am thankful that the way it is , is not the way HE intended it to be.
I am thankful that there are some people who fight for the Kingdom to come.
I am hopeful that I do now, and will always, fight for the Kingdom come. In big and small ways.

Day 4

I am thankful that I work at a school that introduces me to people of all nations.

I have recently met my first friend from Liberia. And just today, my first friends from Mongolia. Awesome stuff.

Love it.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Day 3

I was planning to share this phenomenal thought I had earlier today...but really don't have the time. Lot going on, lot to do, don't have the patience.

Instead I'll share that I'm thankful for two healthy parents that have and continue to bless me immensely. I am so happy that-even from afar-we do life together. Can't wait for my kids to know these two people.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


Today I am thankful for snow days. Not husbands. He was supposed to leave today for a middle school camping trip and not return until Friday.

Really glad that was cancelled. Really glad my super hard-working husband has this day off to rest, recuperate, plan, grade, etc. I can't believe how much work he constantly has on his plate. He never complains. He's my hero. Love him.

(what I'm NOT thankful for....DPS being the ONLY school district to not have a snow day. dumb.)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Month of Thanksgiving

Purposeful, written out, proclamations of thanks. for a month. yes please.

Today I feel thankful...for mercies that are new everyday. for second chances, do-overs.

I'm thankful that I'm not a mother yet ( let me confess a secret, most days I am very much wishing that I WAS a mother right now.) But today, on the bus, one of my students grabbed my side ponytail and clung to it and pulled with all of his might, (because he was having a hard day, and I unfortunately had to sit with him). And instead of using it as an opportunity for a lesson, or a connecting moment, or any such thing...I turned to him and in my sternest voice said "DO NOT TOUCH ME". Poor guy. Oh, I know these things will happen-in my classroom as well as my home-but I want to be such an intentional parent...Anywho, thankful I have time to grow up a little more. =)

I'm thankful for my blue Karen shirt...with it's perfect, intricate details, and flying string everywhich way. Everytime I wear it it brings a smile to my face. =)