Category Archives: Awesome’ness

Life on Sundays

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Do you have a day of the week that stresses you out more than most? It can fluctuate, since most of our schedules do that these days. For a while now that has been Sundays for me. Stephen leaves before the girls and I, and for a huge chunk of our lives we only had 1 car, so me getting there was always changing and adding car-time. That lead to less getting-ready time and with 2 toddlers and a closet that morphs my clothes to fit weird only on Sunday mornings, it was far from my ideal start to a day. Thankfully I’ve found the 2 pair of pants that consistently semi-fit and just slowly swap out shirts. Can’t help but be thankful for a church full of people that enjoy wearing jeans as much as I do ;)

Moving closer to the church last Spring definitely helped with saving us time, as well as getting a 2nd vehicle back when Stephen worked with Bayer. He used to be the associate pastor and youth leader, then that changed and Stephen became the worship leader. He leads us in praise on some Wednesdays, and then both services on Sunday.

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He has been asking me to help with music on Sunday evenings for a few months. Months upon months, really. The girls usually go to bed at 7pm, so going to the 6pm service seemed like far more work than my brain could handle, especially since Sunday mornings are a bit nutty around our house. Well, I finally caved and started helping him a few months ago, and, surprisingly, I really like it. It isn’t consistent, but it’s been a really special time to me. Getting to practice and worship our Savior together, it’s such an amazing and new way to love our God together. And thankfully, after a few trials, we have figured out a little bit of a groove.

 

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I love singing with Stephen. For the past 8 or 9 years it’s always been behind closed doors, in a vehicle, or me harmonizing softly while he plays a guitar. Into a microphone was 100% away from my comfort zone. I decided I’d try it out one Sunday evening (most because attendance is much lower) and quickly discovered that worshiping with him in front of our church family, a lot of very dear friends and fellow believers, wasn’t as uncomfortable as I thought it’d be. Still not my scene, per say, but it’s worth the mild discomfort if it means getting to praise the Lord along side him.

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The girls had to adjust also. Sarah sits or stands in the pew pretty easy, either with a friend or by herself. Elanor took a few weeks to get used to it. The first 2 times she came on the stage and sat in my lap, which I loved. It probably didn’t help that she took a 5:30pm nap just before church, and woke up in a pew instead of her car seat where she fell asleep. Now she sits with Sarah and waits for me to join them after we’re done. It’s usually just a 4 song set, so it doesn’t take long.

 

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I have a few photos that sweet friends from church snapped and sent to me. I’m so thankful for our church family. The Lord knew over 5 years ago that I would sit on a stage and sing with my husband with our little girl in my lap, and I couldn’t imagine a better life.

Psalm 147 -

Praise the Lord! For it is good to sing praises to our God; for it is pleasant, and a song of praise is fitting.
The Lord builds up Jerusalem; he gathers the outcasts of Israel.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
He determines the number of the stars; he gives to all of them their names.
Great is our Lord, and abundant in power; his understanding is beyond measure.
The Lord lifts up the humble; he casts the wicked to the ground.
Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; make melody to our God on the lyre!
He covers the heavens with clouds; he prepares rain for the earth; he makes grass grow on the hills.
He gives to the beasts their food, and to the young ravens that cry.
His delight is not in the strength of the horse, nor his pleasure in the legs of a man,
but the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love.
Praise the Lord, O Jerusalem! Praise your God, O Zion!

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These three goofs are just the best.

A Quick Trip

Last weekend Stephen and I took a fun trip to Orlando with our friends Brandon and Nicole.

We have talked about going somewhere together since our last adventure to Houston in March of 2014, for our friend JD’s wedding. We randomly decided in July that if we did go somewhere it should be to Orlando to visit what I’m just going to call the amazing World of Harry Potter. Well, that is just what we did.

Stephen turns 30 in a few days, so we used his birthday as a reason for the trip. Not that we really need a reason, but it felt more justified this way for my budgeting brain.

We left on Thursday and got back Sunday afternoon.

Visiting Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade were just awesome. It made me wanna re-read the books and watch all the movies. 

We stayed at a Universal hotel, so we took the shuttle to the parks each day, and also got 1-hour early admittance. The line wait was less than 25 minutes the whole time, except the Hogwarts castle ride. It seemed like everyone was in the HP areas so riding The Mummy and Jurassic Park rides was so quick. A definite nice break from the humidity and heat.

In the afternoon we grabbed the shuttle back to the hotel for a nap then got up for dinner and back to the park at night. It was so relaxing. In the evenings we would play cards down in a quieter spot in the hotel, in true McKenzie-Ringl spirit.

Thanks again to my parents for sending me pictures of the girls during their stay at Papaw and Nanas house. They had a blast swimming, going to the train store and eating loads of chocolate ice cream with marshmallows for 3 days :)

Here are a few photos of our adventures.

   
    
    
    
    
    
   
It was a wonderful trip and I’m already looking forward to our next one :)

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Elanor has definitely added naps back into her schedule. I am 100% on board with this addition, and I love when we find her sleeping in different spaces, other than in her bed. On this day my friend Kelly, who now lives in Houston with her hubby and sweet daughter, came over to hangout while they were in town visiting family. A definite bonus to living close to the same area you graduated high school – people return to visit family, and we are already here happily awaiting their trips.

The girls were laughing up a storm when we went to find them. They were all 3 bouncing around on our bed singing “5 Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed”. It was as cute as it sounds, actually more adorable. I love seeing my children play with some of my dearest friends kiddos, especially friends that go back as far as Kel and I do. It only could have been topped if our other HS gal, Melissa, and her little man could have joined us. Next time!

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My parents pool finished getting installed this past July. I know they agree with me that this addition was the best decision ever! I don’t even live there and I love knowing that it’s there waiting for us to play. In the midst of this crazy hot summer too. This was the first time we got to swim in it and my niece Graycie was there to join in on the fun! I love watching my parents play with the girls, and those smiles speak their own joy with one another.

 

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http://www.thehandmadehome.net/2015/06/simple-outdoor-candles/My sister planned a night to take the girls so Stephen and I could go out for dinner. It was a fun evening and before leaving I told Stephen we needed a picture together because, well, it had been forever since we had one that wasn’t from the back of our phone. He  of course was being goofy and made me laugh. He always knows how :)

Aaaaand, I’m including a portrait version so you can see that he is tickling me and nothing more, due to the funny hand placement in the picture above. Now if you weren’t thinking anything about it you are, so oops and your welcome ;)

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152 | Little Girls

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Elanor: age 2

Because there’s nothing quite like a little girl wearing her moms shoes.

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One of the girls favorite things in the world.

Go Fish

 This past week I searched the store for a card game to play with Sarah. I couldn’t find any in the store and decided I’d let Amazon deliver it to me soon. We found Go Fish in my brothers game closet and Sarah caught on just as I’d hoped she would. She beat me both times that we played yesterday.

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Saturdays are always so random for us. Usually we try not to have plans so we can just relax and the girls can get lots of dad time. This one started with some projects, then we went to our church yard sale where the girls played for a bit and then two of the gals from church, Eli and Halie, came over to hang out afterwards. Stephen and Eli worked on music for Sunday’s service and Halie played with the girls in the backyard and in their room. It was a nice chill day. I got the lawn mowed while Halie played with the girls. They are both such quality time kids. They can be so skiddish and shy, which they get from both their introvert parents, but once you invest some good time with them they are all for playing and talking. Halie may regret that later ;)