Wednesday, June 22, 2011

NYC High/Low

3 (or 30) Highs:

1. Experiencing New York City with two of my very favorite people!
2. Staying 3 nights in an adorable apartment overlooking Ground Zero and the Hudson.
3. Long walk along the Hudson.
4. Lunch at Friedman's in Chelsea Market.
5. Highline and seeing the new section for the first time.
6. Walking with Ali!
7. The loudest thunder I have ever heard and the brightest lightning I have ever seen.
8. Showing Greg Natural Gourmet Institute.
9. Being treated to dinner at Numero 28 in East Village by Mark and Erica. Observing that married life suits them both very well! Wonderful couple!
10. Walking over the Brooklyn Bridge to a delicious lunch at Siggy's.
11. Laughing with Ali!
12. Drinks at Ward III in TriBeCa with Chelsea and meeting Jonathan.
13. Watching sunset along the Hudson.
14. Delicious dinner at Macao with Chelsea. Treated wonderfully because they love Ali working there!
15. Lunch on the roof top of Eataly.
16. Eating with Ali!
17. Visiting Trinity Grace Chelsea and meeting Breezy, Michele and Jesse and seeing Kylie again.
18. Gluten free Italian dinner at Risottoria in the West Village.
19. Meeting one of the actors from one of my favorite movies, "The Princess Bride", and laughing afterwards because of a cute Ali-ism. :-)
20. Meeting Ali's roommate, Brandy and spending 2 cozy nights in their apartment.
21. Trying to keep up with Ali!
22. Biking around Central Park and along the Hudson.
23. All organic lunch in Central Park.
24. Watching the taping of Late Night with David Letterman from the second row.
25. Thai dinner in Hell's Kitchen area.
26. Talking about Jesus with Ali and Greg!
27. Drinks at R-Lounge in Time Square. Quiet, calm while watching the mobs below.
28. Subway rides and soooo thankful that we had Ali with us.
29. Getting to know the East Village a bit, as it is the home of our girl.
30. Witnessing Ali's comfort and ease and friendships, making Manhattan seem more like a little village than the big city that it is!

3 Lows:

1. Being away from Nick as he had to deal with a dislocated left knee and a sliced up right foot. But, knowing he was well taken care of by his other family, the Chesnuts, and his Uncle Brian and other family members and friends!
2. Being away from Gregory on his 25th birthday. But, knowing we wouldn't have seen him much, as he studied for Boards. (Praying for you right now, for clarity, calmness, and lots of right answers, as you take that little test!)
3. Saying goodbye to Ali. But, knowing I get to see her almost every month!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy 25th Birthday, Greg!

Several times before today I sat down to write a birthday entry on my blog for you, Gregory. Just the thought, and I start crying. Not tears of sadness. Tears of joy! Tears of thankfulness! Tears of "I can't believe that God gave us this amazing young man to be OUR child!" (Hopefully you and your sister and brother are the only ones reading this, as it could be a bit, or, a lot embarrassing. A gushing mom. Yuck! But, hey, it's my blog!)

So, since you are having your first birthday since I started this blog, I will continue the tradition of recounting the day of your birth. Just for the record. But, backing up to before June 20, 1986, I think you already know this story...

Dad and I...Newly married...I felt tired, not quite myself...Pregnancy test...Positive...

Now, since you know that we are absolutely crazy about you and always have been, I feel it is safe to say, for the record, that this came as a bit of, no, a huge surprise. You were due on our one year anniversary. But, in keeping with your thoughtful nature, you showed up three days early. Thank you!

We had just finished our last birthing class. Came home. Started labor...A long labor. No insurance. Therefore, no drugs. No epidural. Just your dad (and maybe most of the women in my family-I can't remember), always by my side, encouraging and supporting me! When you finally arrived, all slimy and bluish, I thought, "Wow! I had a lizard! I love this little lizard! Maybe, next time I'll have a human baby." :-) And, from the moment I laid eyes on you, I wondered why I hadn't been dreaming about you my whole life!

Greg, you have been a complete joy to raise! You have always been so good-natured and not moody. Stable and steady. Not demanding or dramatic. Kind and thoughtful and considerate. Hard working and disciplined. Absolutely not perfect. (And, like your dad, I know you will take that as the compliment it is meant to be.) Careful with your words, yet not afraid to speak out when needed. Accepting of others. Careful with finances when it comes to yourself, but very generous when it comes to others. Serious when you need to be, but doing your little dance and laughing and joking and bugging Nick and teasing Ali and screaming at the EPL refs at the proper times.

I have tremendous respect for you, Greg. What a gift God gave me in allowing me to be your mom! Know that I do and will continue to pray for you daily. For God's will in your life. For you to abide moment by moment in Jesus. For you to constantly be aware of your dependence on Him. For you to always be filled to overflowing with His love, joy, peace, comfort and hope!

Happy, happy birthday! I love you!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Thankful Heart!

During my reading/coloring time the past few weeks, I focused on Paul's letter to the Colossians. I LOVE this book! After I finished, I went back and highlighted the phrases about being thankful...

"We give thanks to God..." 1:3
" thanks to the Father..." 1:12
"...and overflowing with gratitude." 2:7
"...and be thankful." 3:15
"...with thanksgiving in your hearts to God." 3:16
" thanks through Him to God the Father." 3:17
"...with an attitude of thanksgiving." 4:2

I think it's super cool that the God who created us knew that our bodies, minds and emotions work better when we express thanks! He made us that way! After reading a bit on current studies that prove the health benefits of being thankful, I chuckled to think that scientists are now discovering what our God knew, and revealed to the writers of His Word, from the beginning of time!

So, what has God been teaching me personally about having a heart of thanksgiving lately? For some reason, for which I am truly grateful, I often wake up and my first thoughts are to Him. "Thank You, God! Thank You for who You are! Thank You for choosing me, forgiving me, reconciling me to You! Thank You for making Your home in me! Thank You for giving me my family! Thank You that You are working Your will in all of our lives." As my love for, dependence on, trust in Jesus Christ grows, thanking Him has become a habit. Then, as I share with Him my thankfulness, I love, depend on and trust Him even more! A very un-vicious cycle. A happy cycle! And, an act of Divinity, as this all happens before my very large, very strong cup of coffee! :-) (And then there are those days when this doesn't happen at all...Yep.)

When I hear about people sincerely trying to determine God's will for their lives, these few verses usually come to my mind: "Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."~I Thes. 5:16-19. For us who are in Christ, it's clear! Rejoice, pray, give thanks! God's will! Cool, huh?!

Nick, Ali and Greg, I love how you three have such thankful hearts! I'm thankful that you know intimately the One to thank! I love how all three of you are learning to thank God in good times and in hard times! In times of great surfing in Nicaragua! In times of sitting on the beach with a swollen knee in Nicaragua! In times of celebrating, showers, weddings! In times of no sleep due to middle-of-the-night airplane flights to New York and South Carolina! In times of being here in Encinitas, hanging out with your family! In times of coffee shop study sessions, out in Loma Linda, for finals and dental boards!

And, I thank God for you!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Typical Day at the Wrights

Monday, with all three of you home...

Wake up, still a bit tired. Lots of late night laughter coming from down stairs while Dad and I tried to get to sleep the night before. (Don't mind missing sleep because of laughing and talking and the door opening and closing with your friends coming and going!)
Go downstairs to a semi-clean family room and kitchen. A few dishes still out from the gathering of our friends here the night before.
Try to read. One of you pop in and we chat.
Step over Kyle and you, Nick, on the way to my closet, as you two were sprawled out on my bedroom floor, watching soccer.
Walk with Dad and you, Ali, down at the beach. Since we missed celebrating your birthday with you, we share with you what we love about you! Takes the whole hour and a half. :-)
Ryan stops on his way back up to Santa Barbara to say hi to you, Gregory. You take a short break from your studying for boards. Very short break.
Ali, you and I pop in to the Beauchesnes to give Debbie a hug and to say good-bye to Matt before he heads to Bali.
Jamie comes by to see you, Ali. Then the Searles come over. Grandma stops in. She stays to have some crackers and cheese and a glass of wine with us.
Dinner together. Gregory, is it you that goes for Nick's armpits or is it him bugging you as we lift our hands to thank the Lord? Lots of laughter! Possibly some super inappropriate remarks made by you, Ali, without you knowing how inappropriate they were.
Hug you, Greg, as you head back to Loma Linda. (Very typical)
Drive you, Ali, to the airport, for your flight back to New York. (Kind of typical)
Drop you, Nick, off at the Leopolds so you, Nate, Taylor, Brandon could head down to Nicaragua to surf. (Really not typical at all)

Tuesday, with you three gone...

Maybe, a quick game of ping pong. ;-)

Love it when you three are home!
Miss you when you are away! But, don't worry too much about Dad and me. We'll be okay.