A Baby Shower

Well, it's over...the baby shower for Micah that is. It was yesterday and I co-hosted with Micah's mom, Pam. It was alot for just the two of us to plan ourselves, but we managed to pull it off with no hitches. We were concerned that there wouldn't be many people there and not many gifts, but there were plenty (I think we had about 12-13) and there were gifts everywhere!

As always, the Taylor Family was very generous. I continue to be proud at the way this family steps up and together in times of need. It's one of the most non-dysfunctional families I've known and I am honored to be part of them! They are truly one of a kind! Grandmother (Matriarch of the Taylors) called last night just to tell me what a great job I did with the shower and how well it went. She knew how stressed I was I'm sure. Where else do you find support like that?!

Anyway, the four parents (2 bios and 2 steps) went in together and bought the travel system. You know, it's the HUGE stroller and car seat combo? We got that and then Jenna picked out the cutest outfit...shoes, socks, hat and everything! She picked out the baby book too. I was very pleased and spent way too much! I'm about to go back out to the registry to see what all is still left to buy.

Not sure if I updated on this before, but Steve's eye surgery went off without a hitch. After they actually took him back to do the surgery, it was only about 5 minutes and he was out. He came home that day to rest, but after that, the next day he was back at work like nothing had happened. We are indeed so blessed!

For those of you that read my last post about Thailand and my support letter, thanks for your comments. I have not sent the actual letters out, but am going to this week. I picked up stamps yesterday...am going to try and print them out today.

Let's see...anything going on with the rest of us? Not really. I'm up earlier than the family today. I am going to be really late for church if I don't get moving along...this afternoon, I'll spend doing laundry and cleaning the house (which is a wreck!). I will also try to do my taxes and support letters. All before leaving at 5pm to be back at church. Think I can do it? We'll see. For my HCA friends, I logged almost 10,000 steps yesterday, but I was on my feet all day with the shower. I was so glad when it was over!



I'm going to Thailand. What can YOU do to help?

Below is a letter that many of you will be receiving soon via mail or email. Please consider how you might support me in this journey.

Dear Friend:

I am writing to you on behalf of my missions team from Brentwood Baptist Church (BBC). We are preparing for a trip to Chiang Mai, Thailand this summer. You are receiving this letter because you are important to me.

I will be traveling June 9 and returning June 18. My team will be hosting a conference for Southern Baptist missionaries in the Southeast Asia region. We are responsible for the childcare, worship, preaching, workshops, hospitality, bookstore, and medical support for the conference. There will be over 500 men, women and children attending this event, and BBC is sending over 110 people to support this important time of teaching and encouragement to the missionaries and their families.

I ask for your support as I prepare for this trip and as I travel. You can support me in several ways:

1. You can give financial support. The total cost of my trip is $2,000. Several of our team members are relying completely on the generous giving of people like you. We have stepped out in faith, not knowing how God will provide for us, but believing that He will. Giving is an important way that you can participate in mission work. Although you may not ever go to Thailand, you can send others, as well as encourage and equip missionaries.

You can give by writing a check to Brentwood Baptist Church. Please designate on your check “Thailand”. You may designate your money to support me by specifying my name in the memo line. If you so choose, you can request that your gift remain anonymous and send it directly to Brentwood Baptist Church Missions Office.

If you are a Brentwood Baptist church member, you can give your money during the regular Sunday morning offering; just remember to designate it for me if that is your desire. If you are not a Brentwood Baptist church member, you can mail your check to me so that I can be sure it is applied appropriately.

No matter what amount you are able to give, please know that every dollar is needed and is gratefully received.

2. You can give me and my team your prayers. If you are unable to give financially, you can pray. Please pray for us to prepare. We have children’s Bible school to organize, worship services and seminars to plan, medical resources to obtain, hospitality gifts to acquire, etc. We need extra time for Bible study and prayer. We will be seeing to the many details of family and work that must be taken care of in our absence. We need to go healthy, rested and ready to hit the ground running.

We know that because we are entering into real, spiritual warfare, Satan will discourage and distract us. Crises always arise. Team members get sick. Family members get sick. It is often hard for team members to sleep well. And sometimes we are downright afraid. When you pray for us, you are literally joining our team, standing along side us.

I thank you in advance for all the ways you will support me. You have received this letter because I know that you will be faithful to do so. If you would like to continue to receive updates on our prayer requests and preparations, please email me at the address below. I will also add your name to my email distribution list to receive my journal during my trip.

Gratefully Yours,
Sandra D. Taylor



Read carefully because this is a story you'll probably never hear anywhere else. First, let me preface the story by saying that Steve is fine...

Yesterday, as always, Steve left for work about 5:30am. He likes to cut through some backroads (we live in somewhat of a country area) to get to the interstate. I usually get up in time to tell him goodbye and hear him leave. Yesterday was no exception. At 5:45am, the home phone rings. I knew immediately something wasn't right because NO ONE calls that early in the morning. It was Steve. He'd been in an accident on one of the backroads.

So, he's telling me the story, tells me to call the cops because the road is dark, there's no lights etc. Fortunately, there wasn't another car involved. But he did hit something in the road. A rather large something...something that didn't moooooooooove out of the way in time...

It was a cow.

Yes. A cow.

Evidently, there was a fence down and a bunch of black cows had been out roaming. Of course, with no street lights, Steve just didn't see them in time and they were spread out across both lanes of the street, so there was no way he could have avoided hitting them. Ok...quit laughing long enough to at least read the rest of the story!

For all of you animal lovers, you'll be happy to know that the cow/s were fine. It was the truck that lost the fight. As most of you know, Steve drives a sleek, black, 2005 F150 super cab. It's his pride and joy. The only new vehicle he's had in years and years. And it's a sweet ride. And. It was torn to pieces by this cow. He was able to drive it back home, but he had to have it towed to the body shop. The initial estimate yesterday was upwards of $5000 in damage, but today, the shop called and said they had to have the insurance adjuster come back out because when they started tearing it down, they found "supplemental" damage, so we are climbing toward the $6000 mark. Steve's driving a rental Ford Taurus.

But the good news is that he's OK. He has some neck/shoulder/arm pain from where the seatbelt caught, but hopefully it's just a little soreness. Tonight he had some bleeding inside his eye which might or might not be related because he also has diabetic retinopathy. We were on our way to the emergency room from church because he could see bleeding in his eye. But the doctor called before we got to the ER and said it would be fine till tomorrow when he can get in to see the doctor.

We are very fortunate that he didn't run off the road or hit another car. Plus, we have good insurance etc. so there is much to be thankful for. Plus, once we get through this, it is a rather funny story...

More to come...


Hard times

I've debated over the past few days whether to even post this or not. But I think part of my working through is talking it out and this is a unique forum to "talk". First, let me caveat what I am going to say to those who don't know me well or don't understand what a personal relationship with Christ means...I have no doubt that God is in control each and every day in my life and I feel that struggling in my faith will only serve to make it stronger...but right now, I'm in that valley and hence this blog...

As most of you know, we were unable to conceive through traditional methods. I went through one in-vitro fertilization cycle back in 2000 and Jenna Grace was the miracle that was produced. Because that cycle was quick and successful on the first try, I had no doubt that a sibling would be as easy when we had the money to try again. Well, I was suprised when 4 years and 4 cycles later and we were out of money, cycles and patience and no sibling for Jenna Grace.

And after all of that, I just knew that God had something bigger and better in mind for me. And I was OK with that for a while...content. But lately, after a combination of other things, I have become rather angry and upset with God and the way things have turned out for me.

I was raised in church and have always prayed and done my devotional daily. But lately, I feel like no matter how hard I try, I cannot get close to God. I have tried time after time to improve my prayer life and my Bible Study time both individually and with Steve. And each time, I start and may do well for a day or two or week or two and then I can't hold it together and it falls by the wayside or simply becomes a matter of habit instead of a relationship. And after so many times of trying and failing, I have gotten weary of trying.

Not only that, but now I find myself angry at the way things have turned out with having another child. And if I hear one more person say that "You never know...God might still work a miracle", I will scream. I KNOW GOD CAN TURN MY INFERTILITY INTO A MIRACLE CHILD! I trust that He will if it's in His will...but I just don't know if I can stand hearing that comment one more time! I stand by and watch young, unwed girls get pregnant not even trying and I get very angry at God at why He would allow something like that to happen. I'll not lie...watching my own step-daughter move through her pregnancy has been hard...harder than I imagined it would be. I don't understand. And I know that some things are not meant for me to understand this side of heaven, I am still angry and confused at why God would allow this. My prayers have changed from asking for a miracle to asking God simply to remove this desire from me if it isn't in His will. I mean, I think that's a reasonable request right? If I'm not going to be blessed with another child, then at least give me that peace so that I don't desire it anymore. We all know women who talk about holding a friend or family member's newborn and they say, "It was sweet, but I have NO DESIRE for more...my family is complete." I want that. I think it's the least He can grant me. And when I feel that pang of jealousy at watching a new mom, I wonder why it is that He hasn't honored my simple request. I want to fill that hole with Him, but lately, I can't seem to get that far. My prayers feel like they don't make it past the ceiling of my house. And then I get increasingly frustrated with it all. I'm tired of feeling sad and far away from God. I want to be close to Him. I want to feel Him.

So...anyway, that's what is going on with me. I know I will work my way through this somehow and that child or no child, I'll come out on the other side, but right now I feel like I'm in a spirital wasteland. I continue to search for wisdom in those that I respect...my pastor, my lifelong friend and ultimately My God. Stay tuned...

On a lighter note, today was grandparents day at Jenna's school. I talked with "Nana" (Bertie-my step-mother) early this morning and she was already under the weather and did not think she'd be able to make it. Jenna was very disappointed, but understood that sometimes people get sick. Unfortunately, Steve's parents were unable to make it. But when I picked Jenna up this afternoon, the first words out of her mouth was to tell me that Nana surprised her today at school. She said, "I was coming down the hall and saw Nana, but didn't realize she was my grandparent until she said, 'Hi, Jenna Grace' and I said, 'Hey! There's Nana!!!'" She was so surprised and pleased and I was touched that even though she didn't feel like it, she drug herself out of bed to make a 5 year old girl happy. Thank God for women like Bertie!

Thanks for listening to my ramblings...somehow just posting about them makes me feel better.


"Just a dusting"...

So, given...the weatherpeople in Tennessee just can't seem to get it right. Wednesday night, they were calling for 1-2 inches of snow after midnight. I stayed up late thinking we'd have a late start Thursday. Imagine my surprise when Steve woke me up on Thursday morning to say school was in session and I'd better get moving. We did NOT get 1-2 inches...more like what the weather people would call "just a dusting" of snow. We live to the south of Nashville, so I figured Nashville probably got alot more, but no...what was there was more like frost on the cars! Jenna was totally bummed and I was too (because when it comes to snow, I'm a big kid at heart!)

So, I went to bed a little early on Thursday night to make up for the sleep deprivation. The weather people were now calling for "just a dusting" Thursday night. So, again, imagine my surprise when Steve wakes me up on Friday morning saying all the schools are closed! I look out and there's about 1-2 inches of snow outside! So, anyway, Steve went on in to work and Jenna and I stayed home. Of course, she was wide awake at 5:30am once she heard there was snow and couldn't quit looking out the windows. I'm not kidding...she couldn't even eat breakfast because she kept turning around and squealing about the snow on the deck.

I made her wait until about 11am so it wasn't so cold to bundle up and go out. She wasn't happy about that, and would ask every few minutes if it was time to go yet. Oh, don't I remember those days as a child where time seemed to drag until your mom would let you go out and play in the snow! So, about 11am, we bundled up (yes, the both of us) and went to play.

There wasn't enough to do much with, but she did make a little snowman...she was calling him "Mister Snowman"...or "Snowy"...and we ran around the yard and threw snowballs at each other. This is her first "real" snow...we got about 10 inches a few years back but she was only about 18 months old, so she doesn't remember it and she didn't care for it then because it was just cold and wet which is what I'm sure her diaper felt like most of the time!

Sorry it's been so long since I've posted...it's just been busy for the past few weekends. This weekend started out as no exception to that, however, my breakfast plans today just got canceled, so I have the morning free. I'm wondering if my dear husband and daughter would like to have breakfast with me? But it's past 8:30am now, so maybe it's too late. Oh well...on the bright side, I'm up, showed and all made up, so I'm ready to go in case we find some reason to leave.

I don't know if the forecast is calling for snow anytime soon, not that it matters anyway. I'll keep you all posted!