Archives for March 2010

Springing Forward

Consider yourself warned. The dreaded spring forward to Daylight Savings time happens this weekend. For some reason, the powers that be have us giving up an hour of sleep in March now rather than in April. I guess it doesn’t matter which month, though. I’ve not met anyone yet who likes to sacrifice that 60 minutes of shut-eye.

Think about it. Just mention that it’s time to spring forward, and everyone groans. Nobody likes having an hour of precious sleep stripped away. Nobody likes getting up in what feels like the dead of night. And most people aren’t particularly fond of the changing-all-your-clocks chore. I think I can safely say I speak for millions when I say, “Springing forward is a pain.”

At least that’s how everyone feels on Saturday night and Sunday morning. By Sunday evening, however, after we get that first taste of an extra hour of daylight, we start to change our tunes. We say things like, “Well, it is nice to have it staying light longer…” and “Boy, I love that extra hour of sunshine.” It seems the thrill of seeing spring at the end of our winter tunnel has replaced our cranky attitudes, and we concede that there are indeed benefits to springing forward after all.

Springing forward in other areas of our lives feels much the same, doesn’t it? Deciding to take that first step of a new venture or getting serious about accomplishing one of our goals usually requires a sacrifice of some sort. Indeed, change is never easy, and sometimes it’s downright painful. But then the benefit comes, and its light overshadows the pain.

As we spring forward this weekend into daylight savings time, are there areas in our personal or spiritual lives that cry out for a spring forward as well? Do some of us need to take a step to conquer a habit or change a long-ingrained way of thinking? Do some need to start eating healthy or begin exercising regularly? Some of us may need to forgive someone who has wronged us. Others may need to make a bold move into a new career or just take up a new hobby or learn a new skill. And all of us surely have an area of spiritual growth that just awaits our step of obedience.

Even though springing forward can be downright painful at times, if we’ll take that first step and get past the initial discomfort of change, we’ll soon see benefits that have us changing our tunes. The thrill of accomplishment and the blessing of obedience will have us saying, “You know, springing forward wasn’t so bad after all…”

“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear and put their trust in the Lord.” Psalm 40:3

*Flickr photo by A6U571N

Sharing the Journey

How about another glimpse into the Barkers’ wedding planning journey? I’ve tried not to overdo it and post all things bridal all the time, but some things are just meant to be shared. I’d say chocolate fits into that category :)

Being a mother of the bride definitely has its perks — at least when the bride wants to offer truffles as favors like Kelli does. Of course, those of you who know me or who’ve followed my blog for awhile have already figured out who suggested truffles in the first place :)

As you can see from the photo above, Kelli and I found ourselves in truffle heaven the other day. We had to conduct a taste-test. After all, we can’t in good conscience offer our guests chocolate chosen in a haphazard fashion. It’s our duty to taste any potential truffle flavors and select only the ones we think everyone will enjoy the most. Yes, it’s a tough job, but somebody’s gotta do it. And one of those somebodies is me :)

To be honest, there’s a bit of backstory to our truffle tasting. This was our second trip to the Candy House Chocolate Factory. Believe it or not, we had to go back this time to rectify a truffle tasting mishap. Remember a couple of weeks ago, when I told you about our last wedding planning day — the day when my handy little tape measure didn’t prove to be so handy after all? Well, we had truffle troubles that day as well.

Since it was the Friday evening before Valentine’s Day (Sunday), customers packed the store. Not exactly the best time for us to be waffling in front of the candy counter about which truffles we wanted to try :) Feeling a bit rushed and not wanting to go into our wedding planning explanation while Valentine’s Day shoppers awaited their turns, we asked the clerk to give us one each of the flavors that looked good to us. We paid for our purchase, snapped a photo on Kelli’s camera (which she hasn’t emailed me yet, by the way!), and scurried out to the car for some private taste-testing.

As I opened the bag, I realized we had a truffle mishap on our hands. The clerk had put all the truffles in the same bag, and now we didn’t know which flavor was which. Leave it to us to forget to ask her to bag and label them separately. We groaned and then giggled at the absurdity of the situation. What else was there to do but taste them all and try to guess the flavors? :)

Talk about a comedy of errors. Kelli would take a bite, then I’d take a bite, and then we’d linger over each taste, trying to remember the flavors we’d chosen and come to agreement on which flavor each was. And like any good mother of the bride, I took notes all the while :) Know what was even sillier? We tried to save tiny bites for Jake so he could taste them, too. I wish I could have seen his face when Kelli presented him with a bag of half-eaten candy. Yes, we are that crazy :)

I’m happy to report that our second trip to the candy store proved successful. We now know the six flavors of truffles (yes, six!) we want to serve. You’ll also be happy to hear that I even carried a little plastic knife in my purse so our covert truffle taste-testing in the car could be slightly more dignified this time. Hey, I learn from my mistakes! :)

Hope you enjoyed sharing in this chapter of our wedding planning journey. Sometimes it’s just good to share the fun stuff of life with each other, isn’t it? Be blessed this week!

“We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us.” 1 Thessalonians 2:8

On The Run

I don’t know if March came in like a lion or a lamb for you, but for me it came in with a pair of running shoes on. We’re just three days into the month, and already I’m on the run.

Even though I have an out-of-town wedding planning day scheduled with Kelli for this week, I added another travel day to my schedule and ran to Tulsa yesterday to spend the day with my parents. They were there for a couple of days, and it was just too good of an opportunity to pass up. Too bad it didn’t coincide with my upcoming FCW (writers group) meeting, but that would have been too easy, wouldn’t it? :)

So… back to Tulsa I’ll go next week for my meeting (I’m determined not to miss since I missed January and February), and the week following that, we’ll be traveling during spring break to spend some time with Kristin and Shawn. When we return, there will be only 10 days of the month left, but I can almost guarantee you there’ll be at least one more out-of-town day trip in there if not two. Such is the life of a mother of the bride whose daughter is getting married in another city :)

Anyone else have an on-the-run month ahead of you? Have you, too, been given your marching orders for the month of March? Yours may not be travel related like mine, but maybe you have demands of another sort. If so, take comfort in the fact that we don’t have to run alone. We don’t have to manage the pace of our lives in our own strength.

God’s Word promises that the Lord will be with us wherever we go (Joshua 1:9) and that He will never leave us or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). Let’s remember that “those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)

I need some of that kind of strength. How about you? Let’s not be found on the run without Him…

“…let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…” Hebrews 12:1b-2a

Flickr photo by tangywolf