Well this past week I joined the ranks of the 30's club! What a fun day I had!! I left my house that morning to take Nathan to school only to find balloons and a poster tied to my mailbox - compliments of my neighbor who also brought over a delicious plate of strawberries with chocolate to dip them in!! My sweet boys and I enjoyed them after lunch and I was then serenaded by both of them with their guitars singing "Happy Birthday Mommy!" That night we had church as usual where my husband much to my surprise brought in a cake and our whole church celebrated this momentous milestone with me. Each one of my kids from childrens choir brought me a flower to make a giant bouquet with along with a card signed by all that plays the chicken dance! And if that wasn't enough one of the moms made some little cupcakes for us all to have. And some other moms gave me some fruit - they rock - they know I am trying to eat a little healthier to get rid of the post preggo weight! Then David has the kids play a little game called "Ms LeighAnn trivia" This his how the game went :
1. How old is Ms LeighAnn - 30!!!
2 What are Ms. LeighAnn's favorite colors - pink and orange
3. What is Ms. LeighAnn's favorite place to eat - CFA (he must have paid them with BOG's!!) At this point I thought maybe he was taking me out to eat not at CFA but at Macaroni Grill one of my favorite restaurants - we used to have one close by but it closed down so now we have to travel about an hour to the nearest one - but he moves on not mentioning Mac Grill
4. Where is Ms LeighAnn's favorite place to go - NYC (now I was catching on..)
5. What is one of Ms. LeighAnn's favorite shows to see in NYC - Mary Poppins
That's right!! My husband rocks!! He is taking me to NYC just the two of us!! And we are going to see Mary Poppins!! So then we get home and the fun isn't over my kids come downstairs with this little box and Nathan says "this is for you because you are always chasing after us" - it was a gift card for some new shoes. Then I have a great big card to open which says Happy Birthday from the "Muttley Crew" and it plays who let the dogs out - my kids were hilarious!! Dancing all around! Then David gives me a card and tells me we are going to see another show and writes "Surprise we are going to party in NYC!" Isn't he great!! I am soo looking forward to being in my favorite city with my favorite person!! I think he is more excited than I am - he loves to plan and has already been mapping out our weekend in the city in late April!
Turning 30 brought much introspect on my life this week. I absolutely loved my 20's! So many things happened during that decade of my life...I took a trip to China - actually thought I would go and live there for a while! I graduated college with a B.M. in music education. Used my degree in education and taught school for 3 years. I met and married my best friend. There are just not enough words for me to describe my selfless husband. As God does for so many of us He uniquely designed David just for me and I am truly thankful. I set up house - in three places to be exact - our apartment in PTC, our first house in Newnan and now our home here in Fayetteville and I have told David we are living here forever - you couldn't pay me to move for a number of reasons mainly I love my neighbors and I just love my home! But your home is not just your house it's your family and in my 20's I had the amazing experiencing of carrying and giving birth to the three most precious children - all boys! I have such a unique bond with each one of them and I watch them and know because they are all brothers they will have a unique bond between themselves. I belong to an amazing church body and have some of the best friends!! How gracious my God is!! All of us here on earth experience God's grace. I like to put them in two categories - you have everyday graces - for example I am looking out the window at my neighbors yard and he has some pretty nice green grass - now even the unbeliever gets to experience the nice green grass. And the shining sun which brings light to our day - believer or not you still get the sun and the light it provides. But we as believers oh how much more we get to experience! For the majority my time in the twenty-somethings was great - but there were times when I thought I was being stretched to my limit but God in his infinite mercy reminded me I have to be stretched so I can be more like Him so I can be the best wife, and mommy and friend and whatever else He calls me to be. He never left my side for a minute and He repeatedly forgives me when I stumble. Let me share with you I am a dirty rotten sinner- I sometimes think I am the most selfish person I know along with a long list of other things - but I am also know "My chains are gone, I've been set free, My God, my Savior has ransomed me, And like a flood His mercy rains, Unending love, Amazing grace!" Unfortunately the unbeliever doesn't know to look at the cross or in some cases just doesn't want to so even though they get to experience the everyday graces they are missing the downpour of blessings as a believer. All this to say at first I wasn't really looking forward to being 30 - you know I hear that metabolism just gets slower!! But really I look to this next decade of life with great anticipation! I want to trust Christ even more and learn to live completely in Him!! I want to teach my children about the supremacy of Christ and that He is all they will ever need - oh how I long to see each one of them come know Him and as Nathan would tell me "live in their hearts!" I want them to experience more than just the everyday graces that come with life! But most importantly like Paul says in Colossians this is my prayer for all of us "Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ " After all this world is not my final home and in the grand scheme of things 30 does not compare with eternity!!