Saturday, February 25, 2012

38 Moments.

On March 8th we will celebrate a birthday.  We often spend the day reflecting and talking about her.  We want it to be a very happy day for the boys.  I was sitting here thinking about other ways we can make her day special when I recalled a blog I had seen about a girl who turned 30 recently.  Instead of freaking out about turning 30, she decided to do 30 random acts of kindness for others.  I LOVE this idea.

So here is my challenge to you.  I am going to spend Thursday March 8, 2012 spreading the love.  I vow to have 38 moments in that day that belong to someone other than myself.  38 moments where I will return the love to the community that we received in our time of trial.  38 moments dedicated TO someone else in HONOR of her.  I KNOW you are all up to the challenge.  Anyone can participate from anywhere.  It can be anything from holding a door, to paying for someone's meal.  A plate of cookies in the teacher's lounge at your child's school or  a visit to a nursing home.  Call someone who needs cheering up.  Ask the bank teller how his or her day is...and listen.  It doesn't have to involve money, but if you have extra to a handful of $5 gas cards and hand them out with sweet notes.  Make a special breakfast for your family.  Slip a little surprise in lunches or backpacks before you send them out the door.  Volunteer somewhere.  How fun would it be to hand out lollipops at the DMV while people wait?  This may challenge many of us to step outside their comfort zones...but again, I think we are up for that challenge!!

Comment if you are in.  I know I already have a few people on board who are Facebook friends.  I can't wait! It's going to be a great day!!!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last day of 2011

I regret that I have been away from my blogs for so long.  Life just keeps happening and the speed at which it happens, sometimes leaves me breathless!  I am pretty good at updating facebook because it is quick and usually only requires me to come up with one-liners.  One-liners, by the way, are my specialty.  Especially if they involve inappropriate humor.  I feel the need to do a little update.  The number one question I am asked is,  "How are Scot and the boys doing?"  I am so thankful that I always get to respond with, "They are doing GREAT!" 

Scot is busy busy with work.  He is loving his new job at Kickapoo.  When he isn't working, he spends every waking moment with the boys.  They started playing UNO in the evenings and from what I hear, it get's pretty heated!  It seems that Drew and Levi have their momma's competitive spirit.  They are living the life of bachelors in what has been dubbed by some, The Fraternity House. ;-)BUT, make NO's the cleanest fraternity house you've ever seen!! 

Drew is loving school.  He got an awesome teacher this year and is so blessed that his past two teachers have kept a very close eye on him.  They always check in and  make sure he is doing well.  This child has the best sense of humor.  Many say that he is a lot like me. Lucky kid. ;-)  He is thriving.

Levi is a tough little dude.  If he falls (read, BITES it big time) he will jump up and say, "Well that was fun!" Forget the blood pouring from his knee or elbow, he will NOT admit that it hurt! While he is very tough, he is a cuddle bug of the sweetest variety!!  He is animated and about as agile as they come.

The dynamic between the boys and my kids has changed drastically.  Drew is a man's man and wants to play war games with Cohen on the X-box, while Levi and Claire spend their time together drawing, playing and exploring.  It's fun to watch this unfold. 

The Lord has blessed us with some pretty amazing people throughout this.  Relationships have grown into things we never thought possible.  We live our lives so differently.  It is an honor to be doing His work and building His kingdom.   

Merry Christmas From the Phillips Boys!!

Our Gang. (Thanks Auntie Karen!!)

The Kickapoo Lady Chiefs in their new uniforms.  These will be worn each year for the Kickapoo Classic which was renamed this year, The Stephanie Phillips Classic.

See...we know how to party!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

I saw the sign.

This is a little piece of land recently purchased by a certain SuperDad. It needs to be cleared off before they begin to build. Luckily, the home owners behind his new lot have agreed to take down part of their fence and let SuperDad dispose of his yard waste in their burn pile.

Who does that?!!?!

Nanny and Papa, that's who!!!

That's right! Scot purchased a piece of land that backs up to my parent's back yard!! Steph would be THRILLED to know that her guys are going to be so close. I have to share this story about the "sign" we got the day we were discussing the idea of him buying these lots.

The idea was presented to him by a friend and realtor who has been showing him a few houses. She mentioned in passing that those lots were available and pointed out that they actually touch my parent's property. We didn't realize that, and of course it planted a seed in our minds. Mom and I walked back one day with Scot to look over the fence. We were talking about his options and how great it would be for the boys to be able to walk over. All of the sudden I stopped....and listened. The radio was playing just loud enough for us to hear. The song..."Home" by Michael Buble. This was a special song for Steph and Drew, as well as one of the songs that was played in the video at her funeral. We knew it was a sign. Scot made an offer the next day. The offer was accepted and he is now the proud owner of A LOT of brush!!! Not to mention rocks that my mom threw over the fence years ago!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

I tried.

I sat down with the intentions of writing a blog about the anniversary which is coming up on Sunday. However...I can't seem to find the words. What I CAN say is that we never could have made it through this past year without some great friends, a wonderful community and most importantly our GOD. We give him ALL of the glory. Since I was short on words I put this together. Just some of the special moments during the past year that she would have loved. Enjoy and God Bless.

A Year Without Her... from Chrissy George on Vimeo.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

2011 Relay For Life

My mom and I went to our captain's meeting last night and I left feeling very encouraged. I have felt a little overwhelmed until now. I have never even attended a relay, much less headed up a team, so I don't really know what to expect. Of course, I want to raise as much money as possible, but I also want to be surrounded that night by ALL of your sweet faces. So even if you haven't joined our team, I want to invite you out to be a part of it. I would love nothing more than to meet every person who has said, "You don't know me but..." and also hug those of you who I DO know but haven't seen in ages. Please consider joining us on the night of May 20th. We will be at Hillcrest High School in Springfield and the event starts at 7 pm and lasts until 9 am the following morning.

I am very excited about our on-site fundraiser. One of the main concerns from our littles when Steph passed away was the fact that they wouldn't be able to talk to her anymore. We told them that anytime they would like to send her a message we could write it on a balloon and send it to Heaven. They know that once we aren't able to see the balloon anymore, she got the message. So the night of the relay we will have balloons that can be purchased for $2.00 per balloon and you can send your own message or prayer to Heaven. They can be messages to Steph and/or any of your loved ones that you would like to honor in this way. We are looking into doing a big balloon release during the "Fight Back Ceremony" and I think it will be a very powerful moment that night. (I'm still working out the details on that part) Be sure to come by campsite #435 and purchase your balloon! I will let you know what time the release will be as soon as I find out for sure.

I am planning a team meeting at my house on May 10th at 6 pm. I am extending the invite to anyone who wants to purchase a luminaria that night! Let me know if you would like to come and decorate your own so it can be displayed with all of ours. Our kids are really looking forward to decorating their own in memory of Steph. They are $5.00 and are lit the night of the relay as the torch passes by. I have heard it is a very moving and emotional I will be sure and have the tissues on hand!!!

If you are a survivor please join us and walk in the survivors lap. YOU are an inspiration and we would love to have each and every one of you there so we can celebrate YOU!!!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Birthday SuperDad!!!

My post is a day late...shocking I know.

Yesterday was Scot's birthday. I won't reveal how old he is, but let's just year will be HUGE and we are already planning! He started the day with presents and a Superman cake from his boys. Nanny took them and let them pick out something. They each picked a T-shirt (Captain America and Ghost Busters.) Then they insisted on getting him Batman and The Flash undies!!! I think he was surprised even though Drew told him the night before, "Dad! Don't be a snoop!" Levi chimed in and said, "Yeah. Don't snoop under Drew's bed!" Mom and I stopped by to take him some treats at Kickapoo and the ladies in the office had a buffet of food set up for his special day! They are wonderful to him and SO much fun!! We had nachos for dinner at Nanny's house and just sat around and talked.

As the evening came to a close it was decided that since Claire didn't have school, she and Drew were going to spend the night with Nanny. I went to round up Mr. Cohen from the basement and Scot was down there collecting Mr. Levi. As he scooped up Cohen to give him a hug and kiss goodbye, he said, "I love you!" Cohen, of course, expressed his mutual love for SuperDad and my heart was overflowing with love. Steph would be so proud. She would LOVE how Scot has just planted himself right in the middle of our family. She loved our chaos and she would be so proud of him. Just as much as she was like a sister to me, he has become just like a brother. I look back at the battle he fought right along side her, and I am so incredibly proud of him. For three years he was in survival mode. We are all healing and seem to be "coming out on the other side" of the darkness. It's hard to find the words to express how we feel about SuperDad. I feel like he has accepted the hand he has been dealt and is doing it with such strength...such courage. There is no doubt in my mind that he misses her, and if he had the choice, she would be here. But he is finally enjoying a "simple" life. A life that does not revolve around watching his wife suffer. He is making her proud each day by making his boys THE top priority in his world. He LOVED the days this winter when school was canceled and he got to just PLAY with Drew and Levi. He was so sweet and nurturing to Drew as he had surgery to remove his HUGE infected tonsils. He is already planning fun things to do this summer with the boys. He can't wait to take them fishing and has already scoped out a local golf course that has a small course for kids. We are planning swim days at Nanny's as well as at our new pool at the clubhouse. He never complains, unless he is expressing his concern that he doesn't get enough time to just play with the boys. It's never about HIM. If you don't get a chance to be around Scot, just imagine the best possible scenario. These boys are SO lucky to have him. WE are lucky to have him....even if he is REALLY old. Ha! SuperDad, we all love you so much and hope your day was a good one. Thank you for being you!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Best St. Patrick's Day...EVER!

(Post copied from my blog)

I remember the days when I was....oh, say...21 years old when the best St. Patrick's day ever would NOT involve a day at the hospital! But March 17, 2011 will go down in our family history as the best St. Patrick's Day ever.

We received a precious gift from God at 10:14 when sweet baby Elise Susanne came into this world weighing in at 7 pounds 10 ounces and measuring 20 & 1/2 inches long.

Here she is just minutes after her arrival...and yes, that is my sister-in-love who actually birthed her!! And now I will share the story that this little girl will hear every year on the day of her birth.

Her birthday had been on the calendar for about a week. Thanks to modern medicine we knew she would be a St. Patrick's day baby. We also knew that the Pitocin (used to start labor) would be the only modern day medicine used because my girl Ashley, is Super Momma. I woke up with a spring in my step and a song in my heart because I KNEW it was going to be a beautiful day! It was in fact a GORGEOUS day. The sun was shining and the warm wind was blowing...a great day for a baby. We dressed in our green and headed to school. Claire was on Spring Break but our amazing Pre-school family insisted that she stay and help in class with the littles. She was thrilled and LOVED every second she was there. As we left the school we told everyone we saw, "We have to go!!! We are getting a baby today!!!" My mom went on to the hospital and I ran up to grab a special lunch to take back to Claire and Cohen. (Special lunch means, mommy didn't have time to make lunches before we left the house.) I dropped them off and kissed all the kids one more time. I thought about stopping to grab an iced tea on the way to the hospital, but decided to wait. THANK GOODNESS!!!

I arrived at the hospital and walked in with Nee Nee and Pa (Ashley's parents) and we strolled into labor and delivery. The receptionist pointed us in the right direction and told us to knock before we went in. Assuming my mom and dad were in the birthing suite just chatting up the soon to be parents of two, we knocked and waited. To my surprise, a nurse poked her head out and said, "Sorry, she is actually getting ready to push!" WWHHHAAAATTT????? Just then my parents returned from grabbing a snack and we all did a little happy dance in the hallway! They hooked Ashley up at 7:00 and just 3 hours later she was pushing....then 14 minutes later, she delivered a perfect baby girl.

I heard her first cry and was overcome with emotion. I was there for the birth of my nephew Hunter, Drew, Levi, Alivia and of course my own children...but this emotion was different. With the older kids, I remember my main emotions were excitement and pure love that I could hardly contain. This time was different. I was flooded with gratitude. As I made my way into the room and the grandparents snatched up that sweet girl, my focus was on my brother and sister-in-law. I closed my eyes and thanked God for these two people....for so many reasons. I looked at Jarad, and couldn't keep the tears at bay. I am so proud of him and the man he has become. I am so thankful for our friendship...and for his flawless wife picking abilities.

When it was finally my turn to hold the baby, I remember silence....and then a song started playing on the ipod.

I'm finding myself at a loss for words
And the funny thing is it's okay.
The last thing I need is to be heard
But to hear what You would say.

Word of God speak.
Would You pour down like rain.
Washing my eyes to see
Your majesty.
To be still and know
That You're in this place
Please let me stay and rest
In Your holiness,
Word of God speak.

I'm finding myself in the midst of You.
Beyond the music, beyond the noise
All that I need is to be with You
And in the quiet hear Your voice.

Word of God speak.
Would You pour down like rain.
Washing my eyes to see
Your majesty.
To be still and know
That You're in this place
Please let me stay and rest
In Your holiness,
Word of God speak.

I'm finding myself at a loss for words
And the funny thing is it's okay

-Mercy Me
Word of God Speak

The tears could not be stopped. As I cried I looked at this precious girl and was overwhelmed with gratitude. Our God is so good. He is SO, so good.

As the song ended, I heard whistles in the background and turned to see the NCAA tournament just starting....and I knew Steph was watching.