Saturday, June 28, 2008

Nothing But Noodles

Abby is spending a few weeks in Florida with my sister and her family. Actually, as I write this post, they are on a Disney Cruise, having a blast I'm sure! So, it worked out that we were able to bring Brittany, our niece, back from Florida with us. She's hanging out with this Burchard bunch for a few weeks of vacation time. We have loved having her here! Her and Paige have had a great time and Paige has found a new freedom in having a 15 year old living in the house! Boy, will she be in for a shocker when Britt goes home!! Back to real life for the Paigey!! There are a few places that our family loves here in North Carolina, that you just can't get in Florida. So we decided to take Brittany to a few of them and let her experience some of the fun places we've uncovered!

We found a place called, "Nothing but Noodles" shortly after we moved, that the kids have fallen in love with! You can get all kinds of pasta dishes.... Oriental, Italian and America....and my kids favorite part is you get to eat your dinner with chopsticks!! Carter has gotten quite good at cramming in the mac-n-cheese without a spoon!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Discovery

I have exciting news to share with you! Josh and Tasha Via are dear friends of ours and incredibly gifted musicians. They are in full time ministry and we are lucky enough to have them lead worship once or twice a month at Ridge. They also have two sweet children that I adore (even though Zeke won't give me the time of day!) Stay with me... I'm going somewhere with this...

Josh is also an amazing writer and I am excited to say that his first book has just been released! It is called, "The Discovery...beyond the Jesus of Flapjacks and Grilled Cheese". It is a devotional on the gospel of John. You can now pick up a copy at Xulon Press, Barnes and Noble, Amazon or Target. If you are interested in getting a copy for free.... go here and leave a comment on the blog, and on Saturday, Tasha will be picking a winner to receive a free copy! Good luck!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Look What I Found!!

When I opened the front door to check the mail this evening, I saw a bird flying away from the front porch. I was curious as to where he was hanging out.... Not much on the porch.... Actually, there is nothing on the front porch... I looked around and noticed the hanging basket of flowers. Well, at least they were flowers, until I left for almost two weeks and they went without water. I guess Mrs. Robin decided to move in while we were on vacation. I found these three little blue eggs just sitting in the nest she had made. Too sweet! The kids were so excited! We'll keep a lookout and when we hear little babies, I'll try and snap a few shots! Anyone know how long it will take for these little guys to hatch???

Monday, June 23, 2008

I've Been Tagged!

Last week, my good friend Melanie "tagged" me, so here ya go!

What I was doing 10 years ago:
I was teaching a preschool class at McGregor Baptist Church in Ft. Myers, Florida. I believe I had a class of 10 two year olds! I was also chasing around Paige (who was 2 and a half way back in June of 1998!)

My favorite snacks:
Anything chocolate! Caramello candy bars and Pecan Turtles are my all time favs! My favorite late night treat is a piece of white bread with peanut butter spread on it and a glass of whole milk (and I wonder where all this extra weight came from??)

Five Things on my To-Do List for Today:
1-Program all the phone #'s I lost when my phone died on Saturday
2-Finish all the laundry from vacation
3-Pay bills online (this is the one I hate!)
4-Take Paige to the middle school for AIG testing
5-Make dinner for 12 adults and a mob of kids (this is the part I love!)

Five Jobs I've Had in the Past:
1-Preschool Teacher
2-Kindergarten Teacher
4-Contact Lens Technician
5-Medical Receptionist

Five Places I've Lived:
1-North Miami Beach, FL
2-Clewiston, FL (where I met the love of my life!)
3-Ft. Myers, FL
4-Lehigh Acres, FL
5-Indian Trail, NC

Five Random Things You Might Not Know About Me:
1-I have skydived
2-I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior @ a Cathedrals concert in 1992
3-I would love to adopt sometime soon
4-In my younger days, I was a majorette and twirled both fire and knives!
5-My favorite TV show is COPS

Five Things I Would Want on a Deserted Island:
2-my kids
3-my Bible
4-a camera
5-an all inclusive resort!!! ( I figure since we're just pretending anyway!!)

What I Would Do if I Became I Billionaire:
I would pay off the mortgage on our house in Florida and give it to someone in need. I would build a facility for Ridge Church to grow into. I would pay off all of my family's debts and pay for college for my children and my nieces. I would build a house in Panama for my friends to live in while they minister there, and then I would build another, right down the road for all of us left behind to come and visit them! I would buy a bunch of land and let Abby pick out all the horses she wanted!

I tag Debbie and Debbie!!
Good Luck Ladies :)


I didn't make it back for church last night.... I have to say, I am having a bit of "ridge" withdrawal... We started a new series called "Erased" and this is the video that was shown during the service. It's pretty amazing! Rusty created it during our trip to Ft. Myers beach. If you get a chance, check out the video and Chris's sermon.... both are well worth the time!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Heading Home

Today is our last day in the Fort and I sit here with such mixed emotions.... I am both happy to be heading home and sad to leave.... I miss my family terribly... My sister is my best friend and although we talk everyday, sometimes two or three times a day, I still feel like I am missing so much. We have had a great time, though. We have ate out every meal (heading to PF Chang's as soon as I'm done with this post!) and have just enjoyed hanging out with friends and family. We've had  a "Girl's Night" (yeah for pedicures for Kelli & Sam!!) and "Father's Day" (yummy BBQ @ Mom and Dad's!) and several "Family Nights". (Sexy JV kicking Rusty's butt in Wii
 boxing!! too funny!) 

more pictures to follow soon :)

My sister Samantha and I shopping at Coconut Point

On a side note.....
For those of you who have praying for our house to sell.... We have a showing @ 3:00 this afternoon.... We have no idea if this is the "answer" we've been waiting for... but we are praying for wisdom and clarity in this whole crazy situation.... Please pray for and with us! Love you!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Slacker Blogger

Sorry to those five of you that actually read this crazy stuff I write about our lives. Sorry, my posts have been so few and far between these past few days. It has been an odd week. A good week, but an odd one nonetheless. I have had a great time visiting with family and some really amazing friends. We have been going back to our previous church each night for VBS and that has been a little uncomfortable. My sister is tired of walking with us anywhere at the church. We usually walk about 5 feet and then someone stops and asks us the same four questions....

Question: Did you guys move back? 
My answer: No, just visiting for vacation.
Question: How is life in North Carolina?
My answer: Awesome! We love it!  
Question: I heard you moved to help start a church.... How are things going?
My answer: Really good... Church planting has been harder than we expected, but more rewarding than we could have ever guessed it would be.
Question: Do you miss it here?
My answer: It depends on what the "it" is you're asking about....

It's been those same 4 questions, no less than 30 times in 4 days... It's really hard to explain to people just how different Ridge is. How much our lives have changed..... How grateful we are for where the Lord has placed us. I have loved sharing about Ridge and I can feel myself getting so excited just talking about what we've done as a church in just the last 12 months! I will miss some dear friends and I know I will have to get much better at keeping in touch, but I love my life and can't wait to get back into the swing of it again!


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day

We are having a great time here in Ft Myers. It's amazing all that we have managed to cram into the 3 days so far! Today we had a BBQ with all of my family. I think it was the first time in well over a year that we were all together, under one roof, celebrating a holiday. It made me stop and really appreciate the time we have together. Today it hit me that at the end of this week, I'll be in the car heading home and it might be another year before we are all together again..... I guess I need to make the most out of the small amount of time we have together...  

I also wanted to say Happy Father's Day to my wonderful hubby! He is an amazing father and everyday I think of how blessed our children are to have him as their dad. The kids love him so much and are really enjoying having daddy all to themselves for this week. They were so excited this morning to give him his gifts and have him open the cards and gifts they made! They were up at 7:00, but were "gracious" enough to let him sleep into 8:30! That in itself was a gift!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

6/11/07 - Flashback

Exactly one year ago today, my sister and I and all 5 of the kiddos spent twelve hours following a 26 foot Ryder truck filled with boxes containing everything we owned.

It was a sad day. It was hard to leave behind our house, our friends, our family, our church, our dog and all the memories we had made. I remember that it seemed to feel almost like a funeral. I kissed the dog, hugged David's neck and cried until we left Lee County.

And then again, it was a happy day. It was exciting to follow God's call into that unknown world of church planting! I remember the kids cheering as we left Florida and crossed the Georgia state line! It seemed like the closer we got to Charlotte, pounds of weight that had piled on my shoulders, fell off, a pound or so each mile we traveled.

I remember pulling into our new home, close to midnight, and Chris and Angie and Adam were all waiting for us. There was a basket of goodies for the kids and one for us with all the necessities you need for a new home! Snacks and toilet paper... who knew how important those would be after 12 hours in a car with five children??? Thanks Ridge staff for making us feel right at home from the moment we walked in the door!

It has been a wild ride..... but I wouldn't trade it for anything! I wonder what this new "year" will hold for the Burchard Bunch???

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Tuesday Tidbits

* It's been a relatively quiet week in the Burchard household. The kids and I are enjoying the first few days of summer vacation and we are getting ready to head to Ft Myers in a few days.

* Didn't hit that weight loss goal I was striving for.... lost only two more pounds. Oh well! Whatcha gonna do??? I guess more walking, running (not a pretty sight, I promise you!) and biking are in my very near future. After vacation.

* Still taking in the last week's service @ Ridge.... Amazing, amazing worship. Such a presence in the room, it was almost hard to breathe. Finished up the Parental Guidance Required series. Again, still trying to process all of the info. Great, God-honoring stuff. Stuff I want to try, change, do, and undo. If you haven't heard this series yet.... check it out. Andy and Reggie Joiner pack a whopper.... make sure you have paper and pen, trust me, you'll wanna take notes! Yeah --- It was that good!

* Both looking forward to and scared half to death to go home this week. It has been an amazing and a difficult year. So many changes. The house in Ft Myers has been the cause of so many mixed emotions. We have some yard work and outside "sprucing up" that needs to be done. I know it will be hard to go there..... it's so frustrating.

* Have a list of places I want to go while I'm back in the Fort - Joe's Crab Shack, Il Primo, Coconut Point, Lover's Key & Sanibel Island (maybe a fried grouper @ Gramma Dot's?!)

* Looking forward to hanging out with my family and some great friends.

* The kids are excited about vacation bible school and I am excited that I get to be one of those moms this year. You know the ones I'm talking about.... the ones who always seem to luck into being able to bring their kids to VBS and then go out to dinner (free childcare!)??? Carrabas, here I come!! Bring on the Chicken Bryan.....

Saturday, June 7, 2008

this one's for you, grandma burchard!

After a week of back and forth deciding on whether or not to cut Carter's hair, the "deed", has finally been done! It is way shorter then I thought it would be, but he says he likes it. Me?? I'm not too sure yet.... Look how different he looks now!! I had forgotten how sweet his little ears are and now I'm certain (I had been wondering for quite some time..) that there actually were two eyebrows under all that hair! Here are the before and after shots.


Friday, June 6, 2008

last day of school!!

It's the last day!!!
Today marks the last day of the school for the 2007-2008 year. Woohoo!!! I'm not sure who's more excited--the kids or Rusty and I. I love the freedom that summer brings. I love not having to rush around in the morning and I really enjoy spur of the moment park trips or ice cream stops! I miss the kids when they are at school and I love that the summer holds endless hours of family time. We will be traveling next week back to Ft Myers, but once we get back, I am parking my behind at the pool with Angie and the kids!

Picture taken on the 1st day of school.... wow how they've grown!

I remember the first day of school and we were all so nervous about what this new year would hold. Who knew??? This year couldn't have been any better if we had hand picked their teachers ourselves! We all had a fantastic year and are looking forward to the Fall (well, maybe not quite yet!)

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Abby's "End of the Year" party

Today was Abby's class party and I had the privilege of spending the entire day with 22 second graders! Since the last 6 weeks of school were focused on the rain forest, we came up with several games that would test the students knowledge. The kids two favorite games were the balloon pop and the frog toss. In the balloon pop, the students chose a balloon with a question in it and had to pop it using their tush! Once the balloon was broken, they had to find the paper with the question and then answer it. They did a fantastic job and made their teacher very proud! I was lucky enough to get to pop a balloon of my very own, but fortunately, their is no video to prove it! This video is from Abby's turn at the "Balloon Pop".

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

worship @ ridge

this video is from part of last sunday night's worship set @ ridge. josh, tasha and the rest of the band are just phenomenal.... i wanted to share a small piece with those of you back home....enjoy!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Author's Tea

Abby reading her Rain Forest book to me
Abby and her two best friends...
Linda Joy and Marguerite
Abby showing us the book she created about Horses

Today, Abby's class held their "Author's Tea". Very similar to Carter's "Writer's Celebration", from two weeks ago. We were served punch (surprisingly, there was no tea to be found!) and cake. Abby was able to show us some of her writing projects from this past year. The last 6 weeks of school, the class learned about rainforests and the entire class created their own book about what they learned. She is such a talented writer. She is so creative and has a fantastic way of bringing her stories to life. She wrote an entire book of poems all by herself and some of them were just amazing! I will post a few of them when she brings everything home from school. I am so proud of her.... she is such a special blessing.

a few more to go

I realized that I never did a final post on our little "Weight Loss Challenge" from a few months ago. Well, I'm still not sure who actually won, but in the end, when it was all said and done, I lost a total of 12.2 pounds. I still have another 12 to go to hit my goal weight, so this week I ramped up the diet and exercise! My goal is to lose at least half of that by the time I head to Ft. Myers in 10 days! Wish me luck..... I'm off on a bike ride

Sunday, June 1, 2008

why my kids love ridge church...

These pictures and video were taken tonight in UpStreet, our kindergarten through 5th grade children's environment. This is one of the many reasons my kids can't wait for Sunday nights! During the summer months our UpStreet environment has been transformed into FLIPT. Patrick, Adam and Lauren rocked the new set!! Awesome job guys!! The kids loved it and are already talking about what kind of exciting adventure next week might hold for them! Nights like tonight, when my kids get in the car and can't stop talking about how much fun they had at church, or how funny their small group leaders were during worship, or when they brag to me that "their" church was funner then mine, make all the craziness and uncertainty this past year has brought, worth every single second..... If just one child, who is unchurched, goes home with the same excitement my kids leave with every week; this thing called Ridge is truly making a difference.... and that makes it worth whatever obstacles we may have to climb over. If you watch this video, there is a little boy with a yellow shirt on, off to the right of the screen. His name is James and tonight was his first time @ Ridge. Does he look like he's having a great time or what??? That is why we do what we do....each and every week that the Lord allows us to be a part of this amazing place called Ridge Church!

Christy Nockels "Holy Roar"

I absolutely love this song....