Monday, February 23, 2009

Legacy of Faith

I've spent the past 9 months working almost exclusively on my ancestry research. Inadvertently, I've pushed God back on the priority list. In the middle of the most time consuming part of my research, I ran across an old newspaper article regarding the second cousin of my G-G-G grandfather, Robert Brown Merrill. Reverend Robert Brown Merrill to be exact. He was a Southern Baptist preacher in the small community of Leon, Alabama which is roughly 5 miles north of where we live now. From his obituary in the Crenshaw County News, we do know that he had a 'home' church, but I haven't run across the name of the church yet.

While searching for information regarding Rev. Merrill, I came across several old church records that mentioned numerous other ancestors. It was so wonderful to read through these old records and to learn that my family loved the same Savior as I do now. While some of the churches that they once attended no longer hold services, most are still standing and I've tried to view and/or photograph as many as I can. One in particular is where 5 generations of my family were laid to rest.

In the middle of my research it dawned on me that my ancestors left me a legacy. They left me a legacy of faith. Each generation took the responsibility of teaching the next about our Lord and Savior. Each generation served Him in their own way. Some chose to serve Him in the basic tasks of running a farm and praising Him for putting food on their table. Two generations served Him in the Civil War by serving as field chaplains. The next generation chose to serve Him from behind a pulpit. Yet another chose to serve Him by donating a parcel of land for a church to be built upon. Finally, my grandmother chose to serve Him by showing others how He worked through her. Those works helped lead me to Christ during my early teenage years. It is now my duty to one day pass this legacy along to the next generation.

I want to leave a legacy
How will they remember me?
Did I choose to love? Did I point to You enough
To make a mark on things?
I want to leave an offering
A child of mercy and grace who
blessed your name unapologetically
And leave that kind of legacy
(Legacy by Nichole Nordeman)

Oh my gosh...I've got a blog award!

Cherie at Still Digging for Roots picked my blog for a KreativBlogger award. I am so honored! Thank you!

I'm going to buck the rules a tad and instead of nominating a set number of blogs, I'm going to pick two that I read on a regular basis. Both Taylor and Sarah pour their hearts out on their blog and I feel that both have more than earned it! :)

a little slice of Heaven...
Storing Up Treasures

Monday, February 16, 2009

Digital Scrapbooking

Photography has been one of my favorite hobbies since I was 12 or 13 so it was a natural assumption on my part that I would love scrap-booking just as much. WRONG! I am sorely lacking the patience to be a serious scrap-booker. I can sit down, have a game plan in my head, and get a good start on my layout and then my patience wears thin and I stop. I usually repeat this every 6 months or so.

Imagine my sheer delight when a friend of mine mentioned the
ScrapBlog website! I have spent the past week putting together a few layouts with my favorite family pictures. My goal is to get 30 or 40 pages done, print them, and bind them in a simple leather cover. Here is one of my favorite layouts. For those of you who happen to be dyed-in-the-wool scrap-bookers, please feel free to offer any advice and critiques!

A layout of our sweet Sophie.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


I just realized that I've not included many pictures of our wonderful family. I'd like to spend a few minutes to introduce you to Brett's step-mother (my wonderful mother-in-law), Marlene. Jim and Mar live in north Alabama and if we're out of town for the weekend, you can bet we're up at their house. Marlene is a retired art teacher, a very talented artist, and a soon-to-be published author. I've had the privilege of catching a few sneak peaks at the manuscript as well as seeing the first draft of the cover. I can't wait to read it in its entirety! Here are a few of her paintings that I absolutely adore. Enjoy!

Mar and "The Annabelles"

A more detailed view of "The Annabelles"

Mar and her most recent "Pansy" painting

A detailed view

Monday, February 9, 2009

When it rains, it pours...

Brett and I just returned from a 10 day trip to Niagara Falls to spend time with my grandfather before he underwent open heart surgery. While the surgery itself was successful, he's developed a few complications and is still in the CVICU at Buffalo General. Please pray for his comfort and emotional/physical well-being as well as for the doctors and nurses who are attending to him. My mom made the drive up with us and she is still there with him.

While we spent as much time as possible with him at the hospital, we did do some winter sight-seeing outside of visiting hours. I was able to show Brett the house my dad grew up in and some of our favorite local haunts. For the record, if you do vacation in Niagara Falls anytime soon, make sure you go to the "Why Coffee Shop" off Main St. for breakfast. You can't beat the food or the price! Here are a few pictures of our travels...

Brett and I at the top of Devil's Hole Gorge

Niagara River Gorge

Frozen Niagara River and the Rainbow Bridge into Canada

The American and Bridal Veil Falls

Close up of the American and Bridal Veil Falls

My very dirty, very snowy car

Brett received a phone call on the way home telling us that his maternal grandmother in South Carolina was diagnosed with lung cancer. We don't have many details as her first oncologist appointment isn't until later this week, but please pray for clear answers and for her to feel peaceful regarding any decisions she has to make in the coming days. We will be going to South Carolina in the next couple of weeks to spend some time with her and hopefully we'll have a game-plan in place shortly.