A Challenge for a Better America

Munch

One of the most wonderful blessings God has granted me is the bond of my family. Whether we are in the middle of a crazy whirlwind or celebrating a personal victory we are hand- in- hand facing it together. During moments where we cannot be physically with each other we are in constant communication letting the others feel our presence and love. We have lived through our share of tribulations and, through God’s grace, have learned how fortunate we are to have the family unit He knowingly chose for us.

My brothers and I have an especially close connection. Our unique raising (aka moving a trillion times) enabled us rely on each other more than I think traditional families do. Sure, we fought and tattled and tortured each other like other siblings do; but we also dropped our grievances instantaneously to defend each other’s honor, played for hours on end with green army men, gave up our last dime to buy gifts for special occasions, and drove (or rode a train through a thunderstorm) to spend a few needed moments with each other.

Since Josh is eight years younger than me, I was able to observe him as he changed from a toddling torture into the man he is today. I have watched him accomplish things that others said was beyond his reach. I stood in the doorway of our parents’ basement and watched him, as a young pre-teen, bent over misbehaving computers with the “Jones tongue” peeking out and his brow creased in determination. It didn’t take long for him to discover the computer’s ailment and breathe life back into his patient.

I remember the immeasurable pride I felt as I watched him build his business bit-by-bit. He started his business at only eleven years of age! He continued expanding it while finishing school (graduating at sixteen) and has managed to grow his company from a one man show to an imposing corporation that is quickly becoming known as “the” IT company/ managed service provider for businesses of all sizes (and has several locations around the state). He accomplished all of this while still balancing a personal life that gave me a beautiful sister and allowed me to become an aunt (several times over).

Though a decade or two has passed since I first spied on him, you’ll still find me leaning against his door frame watching him (in true awe and fascination) remote into a company’s system and resolve every concern while simultaneously answering three emails, participating in a conference call, messaging two different associates and talking with an employee who popped in his office to get Josh’s thoughts on a tricky repair or advice on life (sometimes he does all this while holding a sleeping toddler).

Josh has never been one to halfway do anything. Whatever he does he puts all his energy and heart into and competes his project/ work with integrity. His life proves that if we work hard and believe in ourselves (and our support unit) we can make the impossible happen. He is the embodiment of the American dream.

Josh is passionate about several things. God, family, and our country. If he feels that any of those are threatened he will quickly come to their defense. Knowing this I was not surprised when he told me last night that he was creating a video challenging Donald Trump to a debate. Josh sees Trump as a bully, a man who pushes past those with weaker defenses to get what he wants without regard to consequences or who gets hurt. Trump is a threat to our country, not an asset, and needs to be put in his place. I, for one, think Josh can do it. What we need in this country are people with solutions, not people who parade around shouting that we have problems. WE KNOW WE HAVE PROBLEMS! How about coming up with realistic solutions and then working towards their accomplishments? This is OUR country, I say it’s time we take it back.

Love,

2%

Resolute Resolutions

I LOVE New Year’s resolutions! They make me feel like all of my mistakes over the past year are finally done.  Now, there’s no more worries about what I shoulda/coulda done; its a fresh new year with endless possibilities!  This year, instead of making a list of resolutions I’ve decided to pick a word.  I’ll choose one word; a word that embodies who I want to be and strive to personify that word.

After much deliberation-within my own head, of course-I finally chose my word: Faithful.

1.  Faithful to God–I have this bad habit of thinking that I know best.  I tend to try to juggle twenty-seven situations while riding a uni-cycle then complain to God when I fall on my tooshy.  This year I’m going to do my best to prioritize my life.  I’m going to start each morning praying to Him and reading His Word instead of doing my own thing then complaining about never having time for Him or wondering why my life is crazy.

2.  Faithful to My Family–Despite the sibling bickering, or annoyances that crawl up your spine, one’s family is essential and irreplaceable.  This year I am going to make a point to do my best to let them know how much I love them–not just by telling them as I hang up the phone, but by spending time with them and doing things for them.

3.  Faithful to Me–Barely a day passes when I don’t have an idea of something I’d like to do-whether its a project around the house or learning something new-and yet I rarely take the time to do any of these things.  This year I’m going to pick one thing a month to do for me, even if its something as simple as hanging some shelves or knitting a scarf.

Just do me a favor, when I blog about any projects I’m doing or tools I’m using… DO NOT CALL CHUCK!  He’s already hid most of his tools from me and freaks out if I dare ask something as simple as “Hey honey, where’s your nail-spitter-outter-thingy?”

So, here’s to another year of laughter and prayer and 2% moments.  May God richly bless you and yours.

2%

Shamed


I have just returned from our family reunion in Kentucky and my cousin LeAnna has shamed me because I have not been posting on my blog. So here I am, head hung low, trying to come up with something especially witty to make up for the past months….and since that obviously isn’t going to work (lol) I’ll just say whatever pops in my mind.

Chuck and I found out several weeks ago that after years of trying (and even longer of me being told that children were never going to happen) God is blessing us with a child. I am 8 weeks into my pregnancy. Because of some scary incidents that we’ve endured, I’m on semi-bed rest. While I am THRILLED to be pregnant, the thought of 7 1/2 more months of sitting around is a bit overwhelming. To combat this I’ve decided to challenge myself. I’m going to work on my sewing and cooking skills (please take a moment to pray for Chuck and Mandy as they endure the next 71/2 months).

When I run to Walmart, here in a bit, I’m going to pick up some batteries for my camera so that I can post the results (good or bad). Today I’m going to start with making some pillows that Chuck bought me material for 2 months ago, and look up some recipes online that sound simple (key word there). Hopefully, not only will I pass the time I’ll be able to save money (I’m taking inspiration from LeAnna and Brent and their journey here).

To most people this may sound like a pretty easy challenge, but then again most people aren’t talented enough to make crunchy spaghetti!