Friday, June 29, 2007


I have been reading through my journals from last year's trips to Honduras before going again. Satan is doing his best to keep Brett and I busy distracted with life issues before we leave tomorrow morning. I admit I have not spent the time preparing myself for being down there, and will hit the ground running on nearly empty. But I know that God will give me the strength that I need in proportion to the tasks He has already prepared for me to do. And in a matter of hours I will be back to a place that my heart considers a home. We will head to Atlanta tonight after dinner and fly out in the morning, returning again July 11. Certainly any prayers offered on what God will accomplish through this trip would be greatly appreciated. To follow along with what we are doing and how you may communicate with us while we are away, click here
Here are some of my live-in-and-embrace moments of the July '06 trip:
the example of a mother's love in the Comayaqua clinic
the service of a PT to a group of special needs orphans
the brave heart of a little girl playing with a tube tucked gently between her fingers that carries chemo drugs
a little girl tearing down the mountain side when she realizes you are standing at the bottom of it
joy in the eyes of a friend with a dream being lived out day by day
spending time with those you love & tried to invest in
realizing that the floor you are painting will be underneath feet of countless patients, some of whom you may have the opportunity to serve
the aid of a child who expects nothing more than to simply be part of the group
letters from children who have stolen your heart after spending an afternoon playing with them
jolly rancher kisses from someone who is young enough to never know anything different than the life he is currently living
dimples in the smile of a 15 year old who will occasionally drop his guard when he thinks you're not looking
This trip isn't about me Lord, it's about you. And I pray that even though I will mess up, You will work through me. And give me eyes of love so that I may see others as You see them.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

50 Things about Judy

I got blog-tagged by Dinah to list 50 things about myself, which I am sure will not be interesting to most of you. But I love my Dinsers, so here goes:

1. I was secretly hoping that there would be a "prompt" list for this. Like: what is a childhood memory, or what do people not know about you.... Apparently there is not.
2. In one week I will be in Honduras getting ready to serve alongside a few of my favourite people in the world... and can't wait!
3. I would have never guessed in a million years I would be living in Montgomery, AL with a core group of friends that would do whatever I needed/asked from them
4. I have a love/hate relationship with living in the South
5. I moved to America when I was 18.
6. I married my highschool sweetheart and best friend and somehow made it through the last nine years of marriage despite living simultaneously in two different states. God IS good.
7. I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of the Living God
8. I struggle with practising the presence of God
9. I believe prayer warriors are some the of greatest gifts in the world
10. I believe that true friends become family
11. I used to watch The Wonderful World of Disney every Sunday night
12. I LOVE the Muppets. Seriously.
13. I also love my "job" as a physical therapist. It is so rewarding and my patients are such a blessing to me! And if you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life.
14. I keep in touch with my best friend from grade six ~ shout out to Pam!
15. I miss playing in the snow. Playing in it for hours where you lose track of time, and your mittens are soaking wet, but you're too busy to notice.
16. I love Harry Potter and got hooked on it reading one night while babysitting. When the parents came home I told them I'd bring the book back when I finished it.
17. I can get addicted to reading a book and stay up for hours until it is done
18. I read The Davinci Code in one day flying from New York City to Birmingham
19. The worst sunburn I ever got was snorkeling in Roatan and forgetting to adequately cover my derriere with sunscreen...
20. I believe my Mom can make a meal out of absolutely nothing and it would still taste wonderful
21. I remember sitting on my Dad's lap in the front window of the cottage in the middle of the night watching a storm come across the lake at us
22. Canoeing rule #1: Brett and I instantly forgive whatever was said on the portage as soon as we hit the water
23. I have held my breath under water in a lake to escape mosquitoes, black flies, and horse flies
24. I'm 32 years old, not a mother, and okay with that. Others, however, are not, and don't mind telling me about it.
25. I think Brett will be an AWESOME father one day
26. My entire relationship with God changed my freshmen year at Lipscomb, largely in part to Doug Varnado.
27. My first official "mission trip" was to Missouri for flood relief in the fall of 93.
28. I went to Guatemala on a medical mission my freshmen year, and the experience completely changed me... however I spent so much time being completely terrified, and will probably never go back to that country.
29. I could never log the hours I've spent playing Uno at the lake with my Aunt, Uncle, cousins, and Great Aunts
30. I spent so much time with my cousins growing up that they were my other sisters
31. I have great Aunts that served as additional Grandmothers
32. I share my grandmother's love of babies. And have a knack for putting babies to sleep. Apparently this also includes those with colic! {SHW}
33. I have always wanted to get a tattoo... and would have one if they weren't all closed the night I finally decided to get it!
34. I love quoting from movies/tv shows and fitting it into the conversation.
35. I hate wasting a quote on someone who has no idea what I'm talking about/haven't seen the movie. "You're killing me Petey! You're killing me!"
36. I easily remember things that will never appear on a test
37. I have travelled with my Sunday school class to Florida when I was 16 after Ken Mashinter took our request for "trip to Florida" seriously...
38. I almost always burn grilled cheese... which Brett finds absolutely amusing
39. I love 80's music
40. When I was young I went shopping with my Aunt and told her my Mom was "more endowed" that she was when she took me in the dressing room with her
41. I have skipped classes in highschool just to finish a game of euchre in the cafeteria and gotten my friend to write a Peer Counsellor pass to excuse the absence with the teacher
42. I believe sarcasm is my spiritual gift! ;)
43. I have friends living in so many different parts of this continent that no matter where I am I miss all of them at some point in time
44. I don't feel worthy of God's love for me, but want so badly to grasp the concept that I am the apple of His eye
45. It takes me a long time to convince myself to go the first time when I'm cliff jumping
46. I have been spelunking
47. I have always wanted to go on a cruise to Alaska
48. I used to scrapbook using quotes from magazines and ticket stubs/maps/etc. to decorate those old plastic peel back photo albums
49. I wish I was more photogenic
50. I believe that heaven is real and I'll meet you there at the middle Eastern gate!

Sooooooo, that's me. And now {naturally} I tag Karen, Ashley, Laura, and Jamey! :o)

Monday, June 18, 2007

Congratulations Cara & Conrad!

Presenting Mr. & Dr. Conrad Deese
June 9, 2007
Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Are these the most gorgeous wedding pictures or what? If you knew Cara, you would know that this setting was perfect for her (and so, I'm assuming, also perfect for Conrad :)
Congratulations to you both... I wish you a lifetime of love and happiness!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Happy Father's Day!

Brett and I celebrated our Dad's yesterday by going hiking and {tried} to go canoeing,
honouring the men who helped instill in us our love for the outdoors...
Happy Father's day to you both! :)

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Whine, whine, whine

Dear Incredibly Self-Centered Daughter:
Sorry for not being super excited to do your family education at the hospital today. And despite the fact that I had to re-rearrange my schedule because you were supposed to come at 8:30, not 1:20, I also had to constantly fight the urge to slap your fushia-painted lips...
This just in --- your Dad had a S-T-R-O-K-E! Thus the reason he's in the hospital in the first place. On a good day he is a MOD assist for balance, read NOT STAND BY ASSISTANCE. The man can't stand up by himself and has had a catheter in and out of his body four times in the last week, so cut him a little slack. I don't care if it's Father's day, Christmas, or Yom Kippur... he's in a hospital and the world will continue to spin on it's axis if you have to bring your feast to the hospital to celebrate instead... I promise!
And a special kudos to the doc who went over all of our heads and granted him a day pass to the tantrum thrower anyway... yes, thank YOU!
The Physical Therapist who-doesn't-have-a-lot-of-experience-but-at-least-knows-enough-to-

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Never been unloved

You may or may not have needed to be reminded of this today... but the message rings true to us all. Rest in knowing that there is a God in heaven that created you and is crazy in love with you.

I have been unfaithful,
I have been unworthy;
I have been unrighteous,
and I have been unmerciful.

I have been unreachable,
I have been unteachable;
I have been unwilling,
and I have been undesirable.

And sometimes, I have been unwise,
I've been undone by what I'm unsure of -
But because of You
and all that you went through,
I know that I have never been unloved.

I have been unbroken,
I have been unmended;
I have been uneasy,
and I have been unapproachable.

I have been unemotional,
I have been unexceptional;
I have been undecided,
and I have been unqualified.

Unaware - I have been unfair,
I've been unfit for blessings from above.
But even I can see
The sacrifice You made for me, to show me
that I have never been unloved.

It's because of you
and all that you went through,
I know that I have never been unloved.

Michael W. Smith & Wayne Kirpatrick

Thursday, June 07, 2007


"I don't believe that God chose you and blessed you so that you could heap those blessings upon yourself. I believe God chose you...because He wants to make a difference in this world." -Rich Mullins

In three weeks I will get to return to one of my favourite places this side of heaven... Honduras. And I will get to experience it all with some of my very favourite people. For reasons I can never adequately articulate, the people & country of Honduras are very much a part of my heart. I can't tell you why I have to go back every year, I just do. I can't explain what those two weeks mean to me, and why I use up all the PTO I've only had five months to accumulate, I just go. No questions asked. It has totally captured this heart. If you were able to go be somewhere you love, to serve people you love, with people you love, wouldn't you jump at the chance too? I simply can't imagine my summer without traveling to Honduras. This year I will have the opportunity to serve alongside people I go with every year, and people I've prayed to be a part of the trip every year. Can't wait!!!