Tuesday, February 28, 2012

a smile for you.

I just wanted to add a splash of  cuteness to your Tuesday. I love that I get to spend five days a week with this precious boys and girls. Plus, they love them some TJ. You can visit my classroom on any given day, and I guarantee that at least one of them will be taking to him on their pretend phones or naming one of their legos after him or asking me where he got "that big, shiny diamond" on my finger just so they can hear me say his name. Like I said, they love them some TJ. But, then again, why wouldn't they? :)

Speaking of Teesh, he had an interview for an internship this afternoon, and he did great! I'm pretty positive it had a whole lot to do with these three things:

lots of prayers from our wonderful friends
+
his all-around awesomeness
+
this good luck message from his favorite four year-olds.

video

I hope your Tuesday was as terrific as ours was! If not, keep your head up; Wednesday still has all the potential in the world to be your best day yet. Believe it.

"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives."
-Annie Dillard

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

ellybeth.

I'd like to introduce you to my oldest and longest-running best friend, Ellen Elizabeth Mundy, although she's been better known to me as Ellybeth for too many years to count.


She's special every day, but today she gets extra attention because it's the twenty-third celebration of her day of birth. That means that it's been exactly twenty-three years since the world received one of its most precious gifts, and we are beyond blessed to share this place with such an incredible woman. As I'm writing this, she's probably single-handedly taking over Nashville, her new home as of a year ago. She lives roughly six hours away from me, giving me reason after reason to miss her tremendously, but our once-every-few-months dates always mean that much more because of the distance.

I distinctly remember meeting her for the first time when we were in second grade. She had just moved to Greenville, and I was one of the lucky girls she decided to talk to in her endeavors to make new friends. Out of all the girls I grew up with, believing with all my heart that we would all be friends for a lifetime, she is the only one who stuck. That's fifteen years with this girl right by my side. From sleepovers to proms to endless Pete's dates to weddings, she's been one of the very few people I can truthfully say have never let me walk through this life alone. I don't deserve a friend as true and honorable as Ellybeth, but you can bet that I never get tired of thanking the Lord for her.

So, happy birthday, Ellen Elizabeth!

May these next three-hundred and sixty-five days be filled with smiles and laughter and favor from the Lord and more blessings than you could possibly know what to do with and lots of love. I'm excited to watch you continue to make your mark on this world, and you can bet that no one will be cheering for you louder than this girl. I love you with all my heart, plus some!

"Ah, how good it feels! The hand of an old friend."
-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

another first.

Never had I ever explored a ship this big that was once used in combat. It was quite exhilarating to explore the U.S.S. North Carolina, a top-of-the-line battleship that was relied heavily upon during World War II, especially to do so with my boat-and-plane-and-all-things-similar loving husband. I loved finally meeting this big beauty who I've snapped pictures of a thousand times. 

We learned all about her lifespan and history and victories and maintenance and so much more, all within the two hours we spent aboard her decks. Every time we were sure we had reached the end of our explorations, we found another room to make our way through. The words huge and beautiful may appear to be appropriate descriptions of her, but they really only scratch the surface of just how huge and beautiful she truly is.


"Never forget the importance of history. To know nothing of what happened before you took your place on earth is to remain a child forever and ever."
-Author Unknown

Monday, February 20, 2012

our accommodations.

While Teesh was the one experience the most firsts on this trip to a little piece of heaven, I got to have a few of my own, too. Yippee! In honor of our first trip together, we did a couple things that not even I had done before, starting with a two-night stay in a bed-and-breakfast. Neither of us had ever had the pleasure of staying in one before, and it was a treat for it to be in this little town by the river.

Allow me to introduce you to a darling place called the Clarendon Inn. She's nestled in a perfect little nook only two blocks up from the riverwalk, within walking distance of all my favorite places to visit.


She's pretty cute, huh? Maybe one day soon we'll get to visit her again.
I'll be keeping my fingers crossed, just in case. :)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

naley takes wilmington.


a three-day trip to Wilmington was the perfect way to celebrate our first Valentine's day as Mr. and Mrs.

it was more-than-blissful to have both of my favorites meet for the very first time, and I don't know if it gets much better than weekends like this one.

"We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm, and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open."
-Jawaharial Nehru

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

love.


This is what was waiting for me when I got home from work yesterday, on our first Valentine's day as Mr. and Mrs. Troy J. Bargeron. I don't deserve any of the incredible things he does for me on a daily basis, but he never gets tired of making sure I know I'm loved more than I could possibly begin to imagine. My husband knows how to love me just as Jesus has commanded him to do so.

I'm married to the greatest man I've ever known, and this is just one of the millions upon millions of reasons why.

I hope your Valentine's Day was a reminder of how much you are loved, too.

Whenever you start to feel lonely, just remember two things: 1) you are loved by the Creator of the universe and He gave His life so that you could live life and do so abundantly, and 2) you are fearfully and wonderful made. There has never been a time when you haven't been loved. Believe that and live it. Don't ever let Satan steal your joy, simply tell him who your lover is: Jesus Christ.

"This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins."
1 John 4:10

Monday, February 13, 2012

wittle brudder.

It was daddy's weekend and I was twelve years old. Shannon drove a Dodge truck with an extended cab, and we took that thing everywhere. We got out of the truck at home after running some errands (probably to Best Buy, because we practically lived there when we were growing up), and daddy randomly said, "We could always buy a shell for the bed of the truck." Melanie and I looked at each other as if to say "he has lost his mind," Dustin and Freeman barely knew they were even in the world, and Shannon chuckled a nervous little chuckle. We walked inside, and daddy told us to wait downstairs for a minute because Shannon had something to show us. She walked into the bathroom, came out a few seconds later holding a stick that showed two red lines, and when I realized what that meant and looked up with my mouth wide open, Shannon was already crying. We all hugged and cried (well, to be accurate, I believe Shannon and I were the only ones crying--daddy is a tough guy, and the other three still had no idea what was going on) and rejoiced (in a freaking-out manor) over a new member of our family.

And that's the story of the time I first fell in love with William Michael Henderson.

I've watched him grow up for the last ten years, and the realization that it has already been ten years since he made his appearance onto this earth makes my head spin. I've learned so much about so many things because of that little guy, and it is the biggest blessing in the world to get to be his big sister. He was the best surprise our family could have ever hoped for, and I can't wait to watch him continue to grow up and become a man of strength and honor and dignity.

Wilber, there isn't a thing in this whole world that I wouldn't do for you if you asked (and there's plenty that I would do even if you didn't). I hope you read this one day and get a glimpse of how much you have changed my life for the better over the course of your last ten years (because it really is just a glimpse). I hope you know that I will always do my best to protect you and push you to do the right thing and tell you no only when I absolutely have to and spoil you rotten and love you until you feel it in your soul.

happy birthday, little brother!
I love you more than words could ever, ever say.


"There's no other love like the love for a brother. There's no other love like the love from a brother."
-Astrid Alauda

Thursday, February 9, 2012

twenty-seventh.

Twenty-seven years ago on this very day, Savannah Nicole Bargeron (now Childress) was welcomed into the world with open arms. She's a daughter, a wife, a hard-worker, a planner, a do-anything-for-anyone kind of gal. And to me, she's a big sister. Lucky for me, I was inducted into the Bargeron family looooong before I took their last name, and I fell in love with the privilege of getting two more sisters to add to my list of favorite things. 

My very first memory of Sav is being behind her in the car line when my mommy dropped me off at school when I was in middle school. She was dropping Teesh off, and I remember thinking how cool it would be to have a big sister to drive me to school. Not to mention how I secretly wished she and Candie would be my friends and I could hang out with them and get to see TJ while doing so because I had a ginormous crush on him. Who would have thought we'd be family ten years later? :)

happy birthday, Sav!
I'm so thankful for your love and support and friendship. Teesh is uber blessed to have a sister like you, and I'm uber blessed to have a husband with a sister like you.


"How do people make it through life without a sister?"
-Sara Corpening

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

thoughts for a tuesday.

Today I spent a lot of time thanking the Lord for giving me such wonderful ladies to call my best friends. All of us live all over the place, so seeing each other is a privilege now instead of being second nature like it used to be. My wedding day was the best day of my life for lots and lots of reasons, but one of my most favorites was having all eleven of the best friends I've ever had in one place at the same time. I'd get married over and over again just to make that happen again.

Mellywhack, Katiebug, Best Friend Not Bestie, P. Sawyer, Cait Cait, Court Bourt, Ellybeth, Michal, EmilieCarol, Eeedo, and Laur Laur are all very different and yet so similar. I don't know why the Lord chose to give me not one, but eleven little pieces of heaven on earth, but I'm so glad He did.

I'm thankful for them every single day, but today was a little different for some reason. I think it's because I miss them a whole lot, and I'd give anything to have them all cuddled up in our tiny loft, watching tv with me, laughing about all the hilarious things that happened to us in the last twelve hours (because let's face it, 95% of all our days are more unusual than the average person's days).


See, they even look wonderful, don't they? :)

"Nothing but heaven itself is better than a friend who is really a friend."
-Plautus

Friday, February 3, 2012

a season for every activity under heaven.

For as long as I can remember, this has always been a part of my life: change. Sometimes I brought it upon myself because it needed to happen, and other times I had no say in the matter. People run from change; we avoid it like a plague, and there have been more than a few times in my life when I have done the same. I've never been scared or fearful of change, but I've prayed for it not to come, usually because I'm comfortably nestled into a routine that works. But guess what? It still comes.

Today, I had the pleasure of being swooped up into a whirlwind of change: as of February 3, 2012, Ms. Anna is the new K-4 teacher at City Kids Child Development Center (again). Around this time last year, I was given my own classroom full of four year-olds, and now the cycle has repeated. Sounds exciting, right? Well, it definitely is. Or at least it will be once I get over the heartache of prematurely leaving twelve of the most precious kids ever created behind with another teacher. In just a few months, they'll all be coming back to me (and I am very thankful for that), but my heart still hurts. It's times like these that make having a heart that's way too big for your body not so fun. But I would never choose to love any of them less, not a single one of them, even if it meant that it would make this transition a little less difficult.

I knew it was coming, even though I selfishly prayed that it wouldn't. I told Teesh just last week that I was going to stand my ground and tell my director that I didn't want to move and that I did enough around there as it is. As you can tell, that's exactly how it went down. Sike! As soon as they called me into the office, I knew what the conversation would be about. I burst into tears the moment they asked me to take over K-4, for several reasons, but mostly because the little voice inside me (who I like to call Jesus) spoke up and told me I was what they needed. I don't know about you, but I've found it to be the most humbling experience to be used by God, so I agreed to make the switch. Who am I to say no to the Creator of the universe?

There's a reason that all the kids I get to call mine respond so well to me and love me and go home talking about me all night long and wake up excited to come to school just so they can see Ms. Anna: it's because I love them back. I love them a whole lot back. And most importantly, I try my best to love them the way Jesus loves me. Jesus changes things, and it's a difference that you can see plain as day on any given day in my class at City Kids Child Development Center and all around the world. Discipline accompanied by love is powerful, and any child that has ever experienced it is proof of it.

Wherever the Lord will make the most out of Himself through me is where I want to be, even though my flesh may hate the very thought of it. His glory is what we're here for anyway, right? Right. I may still cry and miss my kiddos and struggle to transform another classroom into my own, but I'll smile and joyfully praise my Savior through it all. My flesh may win out sometimes, but I'll be putting up the fight of my life, all because I'm being used in raising up a generation by a God who could do it all by himself. He chose me, therefore I choose him. He loved me, therefore I love him. He is my strength and my shield and my portion forever. It's my prayer that He will bring His kingdom down to dwell in Ms. Anna's K-4 classroom, and that everyone will see a light shining from that last door on the right at the end of the hall.

"And He who searches our hearts knows the mind of the spirit, because the spirit intercedes for God's people in accordance with the will of God. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose."
-Romans 8:27-28
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