the graduate

go ahead... say it...


now, you got it out of your system.

regardless of your thoughts on preschool graduation, you have to admit that this is adorable! look at how PROUD he is. hat slightly crooked. diploma in hand. holding his beloved porkchop close to his heart (fyi, porkchop was a traveling stuffed dog that came home with the kids on a rotating basis. as their parting gift each child gets a little porkchop replica).

i honestly cannot believe he's going to kindergarten in the fall. zach in school all day. five days a week. my heart is breaking in my chest as i write this! and i know... i fear... that in the blink of an eye i'll be taking a picture of him with high school diploma in one hand, girlfriend's hand in the other. [literally shuddering at the thought].

i cannot possibly express how this little man has change my life. the joy he brings. how he makes me laugh. how different he is from his sister. how much he is like his father. how much i love him.

sorry about the mush. but it's bound to happen when a mom is looking at a picture of her extraordinarily adorable 5 year old in a hat and gown.

friday flashback

Maybe a scrapbook page is a strange post for a Friday Flashback... but this is definitely a flashback for me! This is one of my favorite pictures of all time of Zachary... and the title... is perfect... because truth be told Zach did fall in love with dirt at a very young age. And the infatuation has not eased a bit! My little man is just about a year old in this photo, and ranges from one to three in the pics on the page below. How he has grown! Look at those dimpled little baby hands! His short, short hair! Chubby little cheeks! But the saaaame beautiful brown eyes! And the same passioned response to dirt, mud, sand [doesn't matter as long as it's dirty]. Just tonight after remaining relatively clean through his entire ball game... giving the big high-fives... grabbing a drink at the concession stand... I am talking to family when I turn to see Z running with great gusto from third to home... and you guessed it, the only kid on the field and he's sliding head first into home. The kid loves dirt.

This flashback has duel purpose for me, though. It's about more than the amazing picture of my little man... it's about the scrapbook layout itself. See, I understand the passion Zach has for dirt... I feel that way when I see beautifully patterned paper. Dotted ribbon. Chipboard letters. Heidi Swapp. Basic Grey. But somehow, the last six or so months, I lost complete sight of that. I seldom, if ever, thought scrapping, much less pulling out my beloved pictures of my beloved family and actually cutting and pasting myself into oblivion. The feeling of my sanding block almost forgotten. I could actually go places without the stain of ink on my finger tips.

And although I didn't realize it, I missed it. Terribly.

Then, a week ago tonight, I went to a crop and actually made a layout featuring my own family [actually just Zach and Amp], and it turned out so cute. The process itself was refreshing and relaxing. It was great to use that creative outlet once again. And I'm so ready for more. I had been out of the game for a while. I'd stayed clean, kept the bits of paper off my dining room floor, and refrained from buying fun new stuff... but guess what... I feel like I just ran from third base and slid face first in to home. I'm thinking tomorrow I've got some pictures calling my name. Watch out world, 'cause Becky's got her scrap on!

update: just fyi- that beautifully patterened paper you see. basic grey. just so you know what get's my blood pumping ;) and this layout was created for the $20,000 scrapbook contest in 2006.



about my total lack of blogging. It's not been for lack of things to blog about. Life has been blessedly busy lately with tons I'd love to share.... just very limited time! Zach graduated preschool. Tali is now in the market for a new school [since Z will be invading her territory at NK in the fall!] Baby Kolten was born on Sunday a beautiful 8lbs 4oz (pray for the jaundice issue!). The AMAZING SYTYCD party hosted by Lauren last week. A Memorial Day spent cleaning and making over kitchen cabinets. Spending the night scrapbooking with friends on Friday. Lily is as cute as ever, and Sammy has finally decided to love her. Ball season is in full swing and Jim is as busy as ever.

Oh my gosh, I'm tired just thinking about it!

Right now I'm in Indy for a case managers conference. Should be the epitomy of boring, but mandatory so here I am. Coworkers feel it's time to head off for dinner... so away I go :) Hopefully I'll be able to get on later and do some catching up!


Just when you think...

you have people figured out, they surprise you.

My brother did that today. I love all my brothers, but they are all very different people... and for a long time I had a tough time connecting with Cory. His straight-forward, no-frills, serious approach to life contrasted with my over-the-top rainbows and gumdrops view of the world. But over the last year or more that's been changing. I've come to see what an incredible person he really is. What a fine man he is growing into. We've really become friends. And still the conversation I had with him today, the one that left me both speechless and in tears, surprised me.

He wants to bless someone. He wants to say "here, you can have this" and make someone's day. He wants to reach out to the kid that everyone else makes fun of. The kid that has nothing. And he wants to make that kid feel appreciated. Respected. Noticed. And he wants to do so for the right reason. For a reason I never considered.

He wants to do so because the kid deserves it.

When I naively suggested that he wanted to give this kid a blessing because "he doesn't have anything", Cory pointed out that it's true, "the kid has nothing... but I want to give this to him because he deserves it." Wow. I've thought a lot about giving lately. No-strings-attached kind of giving. Love-of-Christ kind of giving. But today I talked to a young man not thinking about it... I talked to a one recognizing that "everything points that this is the obvious thing to do".

Isn't that truth? Doesn't Christ tell us that what we do for the least of these we do for Him. Don't they deserve it? (have you ever thought about it that way?) I'm not surprised that Cory wants to do something nice. He's a nice kid. What amazed me was the depth of his conviction. See, when Cory got home and told my other brother his plan... he freaked out and refused to let Cory follow through with giving away something that is rightfully shared between them. I've never seen Cory so upset. As I talked to him on the phone I could hear the compassion in his voice for this kid that deserved something in his life.

He brought me to tears. And regardless of what happens with Tyson, Cory is going to see to it that this kid he knows gets the blessing he deserves. Today I found an example of unconditional love, the kind of love that every human on this earth deserves to know... in my 15 year old brother. Just when you think you have someone figured out...


friday flashback... Daddy's Girl.

For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father." The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. Romans 8:15-17

Abba. Daddy. Our heavenly adoption! Do you understand what that means? Can you grasp the implication of being the son or daughter of GOD!? Co-heirs with Christ!? To be accepted so perfectly, so entirely, so unconditionally into this Divine family!?

I was created by an earthly father that didn't want me. It was that simple. He had a life to live, and I was not a part of his plan. In fact, my life was quite an inconvenience to him, so he urged mom to get ride of that life. That little blob of cells that would become me. That tiny beating heart that now keeps time in my chest.

But mom, and God, had different plans. So despite the embarrassment of being a single mom dumped by her long-time boyfriend... mom had me.

And three years later met Joe Talley [aka my dad]. From the moment dad and I met, there was love. Unconditional. Unquestionable. Pure. Love. He and mom married quickly, and we became a family. My name changed sitting at our kitchen table (Talley being a lot easier to spell than Deininger!). We didn't go through a fancy court proceding. Didn't hire a lawyer. I just became his. We didn't chase my biological father for child support. We didn't mention him. We didn't need him. Because I had a daddy.

My dad was a trucker. He often told my mom that she was his shiny new Peterbilt and I was the chrome mirrors [that's trucker speak for the icing on the cake]. When he accepted me into his family, when he took me into his heart, it was complete and perfect. In fact, it was so complete and perfect, that at the age of twelve he actually had to explain to me that I was not his biological daughter. Do you understand what I'm saying? Although I was definitely old enough to remember meeting him for the first time, our relationship was so whole that he felt like my dad, and I never questioned it.

You see... my spirit testified with his spirit that we were family. Biologically or not, he was my dad.

And it's like that with God. When He adopts you, dear one, it's that pure. It's that perfect. It's that unconditional. You no longer belong to this world. You no longer have the inheritance of an earthly father that spoke death over you. Because, sweet friend, that's what this world speaks over us. Death. Sin. Alienation. Hopelessness. But when you are His, you no longer have an obligation to this dead and dying world. Because you are a son or daughter of the MOST HIGH GOD.

We inherit a spirit of sonship! And by that we cry Abba! Daddy! God is not some distant figure sitting high upon His throne... He longs to be your dad! To know you! To have relationship with you! My dad could have chosen to be a step-father. He could have chosen to seek financial support from that man back in Ohio. But he didn't... because as far as he was concerned, I was his. Father God chose to be more than a Creator... He chose to be involved. He chose to know us. God didn't need us. He is complete in and of Himself. Father, Son, Holy Spirit... perfection. But He desired us. He desired to love us. He desired to know us. And how strong is that desire?

Enough to send His own Son to pay the price for our sins. So that we may be redeemed in the eyes of the Most Holy. So that we can cry out to Him. Rejoice with Him. And when we need to... climb up onto His lap, and just be there. Held by our Father God. Just like that little girl in the picture. That little girl that had been rejected by this world. That little girl who was adopted with such perfection, she will never question what it feels like to rest safely in the arms of her daddy.


carol maze...

...should blog.

after an evening of what can only be described as side-splitting holy hilarity i am more convinced than ever that you should join the legion of us bloggers and impart to us your specific brand of wit and wisdom.

i appreciate the work you do on andrew's behalf through his caring bridge site. keep that up.

but please blog.

however i checked, and playlist.com does NOT have the dairyette song to add to your tunes list. hope that's not a deal breaker.


stuff christians like...

...strikes again.

seriously. go here. read. enjoy.
[but don't drink anything while you are doing so. it's guaranteed to come out of your nose.]
Kicking old ladies in the face for God. What!?!


Zach... aka Mr. Understatement

I'm painting my kitchen cabinets (a little at a time)... with Tali home sick I took the day off work... and with Tali asleep on the couch I took the opportunity to paint a few more doors. All was going well, actually got quite a bit accomplished. And I had even managed to stay relatively clean for a meeting I have with a client tonight. Score two for Becky!

Placing the lid on top of the paint can, I realized it was sitting all crooked. I tried to fix it, but it just wouldn't "pop on" when I pressed with my hand. No problem, I have an adorable little pink hammer, perfect for this occasion of sealing up my fresh can of paint. Tap tap at the back... tape tap at the sides... and then it happened...

I didn't pay attention to the pool of paint that had formed in the lip of the paint can after my last pouring. Yet it was there. And you can imagine what happened when I tap-tapped on the front.

It was rather impressive- a spray of paint straight to my head and shoulers. Spots of white paint in my hair, on my glasses, my lips, nose, neck, more in my hair (a lot in my hair, actually), all over the front of my shirt, my arms, my hands... I was like a reverse dalmation. Rushing to the bathroom I run into Zach who glances up at me, but does not hesitate, break stride, or make any comment at what had to be a comical sight to a five year old boy.

Strange, I thought.

Then, as I start to wash my hands he yells in from the other room "Hey mom, you got a little paint on your glasses".

Yeah. Thanks Zach.

Hadn't noticed.


oh my goodness! i added a playlist to my blog... the day i did the redesign... and none of that sort of thing transferred (apparently those things are called widgets. just so you know).

i kept thinking as i put things on my page i was missing something...but finally gave up trying to figure out what it was...

and i just went to laurens blog... [have you been there, if not... go there... link is on the right hand of my page]

and remembered it's the MUSIC! so please enjoy :)

or if those things annoy you, hit pause and it will shut up! lol.

MUSIC! how could i forget? thanks lauren!

seriously, no matter what color bev dyes my hair. i'm still a blonde at heart.

sick kiddo...

Tali is home sick from school today. Poor thing started coughing yesterday, and by this morning it was really bad. Got some Musinex [Mamaw Miller swears by it] and Benadryl in her, as I'm fairly convinced it's allergy related, and she was doing pretty decent. Even went to Bible Study at Carol's with mommy [which God confirmed in a LARGE way I was to be there!]... but now she's three hours post-dosage and is asking if it's been four hours yet. Poor thing really is feeling like poo... she's trying to take a nap while we wait for her to be able to take more meds.

Spring is wonderful. We love spring. It's just too bad it has to come with allergies, huh?


it's officially begun...

BALL SEASON in E'town has officially started. For my husband, it started months ago as he's somehow managed to inherit the league... but for our family as a whole it became a reality tonight at the kid's first practice- Zach and twenty other 3-5 year olds playing tee-ball.

Read that again... twenty-one 3-5 year olds...

Thankfully, in a moment of clarity, Jim decided to divide them into two teams. Seeing them all together tonight was completely overwhelming for me!!! So I can't imagine what Jim must be feeling with his binder full of registrations for tee-ball through high school kids! All I can say is ... Praise the Lord for other involved parents willing to help out as well, summer ball on any scale is a big undertaking. I got a little taste of why he does it though... Tonight, as my sweet hubby walked across the field a little three year old yelled out "Hey Coach!" with a very "that's the man that's in charge and I'm going to get to know him" kind of tone. Cutest thing ever [right Andi?].

It's been cool for me taking the back seat and watch Jim head this up. I'm usually the one with irons in the fire. The one getting home late. Or with meetings. Or running the kids places. But on the ball thing- I'm just the helpmate. And it feels pretty darned good :) I'm trying to be very patient. To ignore the number of meetings he has in a week's time. To be realistic about the fact that he will be at the ball field at least a portion of every night of the week. Because he's pretty good about letting me do my thing.

So if you need to talk to us the next couple of months, and we aren't home... follow the sound of "hey batter! batter! batter!....."

[ps. photo of Jim and Zach taken 6.30.07]