Friday, December 21, 2007


Wow... what a crazy holiday season this has been thus far?!?! Not necessarily crazy in a good, fun, busy, kind of way (though it has been crazy busy)... but crazy in an emotional, up and down, happy and sad kind of way.

First of all Luke and I LOVE Christmas!! We are the kind of people who start counting down to Christmas in August and September... we pull all of our Christmas CD's out right before Thanksgiving so we can start listening to them the day after Thanksgiving. We love traditions... making new ones and carrying out the ones that our parents have started. This time of year is what makes us tick... and this year was going to be the Best.

You see last year after Christmas I spent every dime of my Christmas money on new decorations... a whole new tree, stockings, outside lights, etc. I was Psyched!! We planned a vacation to Charleston, SC for January 1-4 (our first vacation for just the two of us, that wasn't to Orlando) and were totally excited about that. This was also the year that we were really going to be able to spoil each other gift wise. Now I know Christmas is not about gifts, but you must admit giving and receiving gifts does add a certain amount of fun, magic, and splendor to the season. Luke and I are looking to start having children in the next few years, and we know that once they come we are going to want to spend every dime we have on gifts for them. So this was OUR year... the year to spoil each other.

Perhaps the greatest thing that happened this holiday season is that Since October has finalized and signed the record deal with Tooth & Nail. God has given us this huge desire of our hearts, and something that Luke (and I... in my own way) have been working towards for the past 8 years. We know that our purpose in life is to serve God in full time ministery and we both believe that SO is the way that God has called us to serve him at this time. So with all that God has done for us this year we were psyched for a really Great Christmas.

But Satan had other plans. He started on November 29th to try and ruin our Christmas this year. First of all I was in CO working from 11/27 - 12/5. In that time I missed mom's Heartland Chorale Performance, Point of Grace Christmas Concert, and LG and I putting our tree up on 12/1 (another tradition we have started). After that the low blows (as Luke calls them) began. I got sick, the glass on our oven exploded, our outside Christmas lights mysteriously stopped working, my company had a bad year financially, our vacation to Charleston had to be canceled, etc. Satan found little subtle ways to ruin our Christmas and pull us down.

As sad or bummed as we might be about some of the things that have happened over the past few weeks, we are able to recognize them as attacks from Satan. Last night Luke and I were having dinner and he brought another very visible attack to my attention. Being a guitar player Luke's hands are a very important part of his ministry and lively hood. The past few weeks he has been working in Wauchula in a grove and building a barn. Satan even used this to attack us in perhaps the most eerie way. Luke slammed his thumb with a hammer this week and under the nail is totally black, swollen, and sore. He also burnt his hand on a muffler while he was mowing. Satan is a sly guy... he physically attacked the most important part of Luke's body that he uses to Worship God and provide for this family... Wow!!

As stressful and emotional as these attacks have been on our family it gives us a certain amount of comfort in knowing that we must be doing exactly what God wants us to do, or Satan would not be attacking us so hard.

As I was driving home last night I was listening to the POG Christmas CD. My all time favorite Christmas song is Let There Be Light... as I was driving home last night listening to this song God revealed something amazing to me through the chorus...

"Let there be Light, let it shine bright.
Filling the darkness with dazzling light.
Hope for the hopeless was born on that night.
When God sent his Son and said Let There Be Light."

Jesus is our hope... God sent Hope to us that first Christmas night. He has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and might. He doesn't want us to despair in doing good. HE is our HOPE!!

And he has filled the darkness of this world, the darkness that Satan trys to create and control with Dazzling Light! His Light! It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "Jesus is the Light of the World."

So this is definitely the year for Refocusing in my life. Taking my focus off of traditions, gifts, family, and food... and Focusing on Jesus! My Hope, My Light, My Comforter, My Provider, My Best Friend, and My Father.

I wish all of you a Very Merry Christmas!!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Christmas Pictures 2007

The most recent photos of the Graham Family!!


I know I am biased, but I think I pretty much have the cutest, most photogenic dog in the entire world!!


Sunday Night the members and wives of Since October went to Ruth's Chris Steak House to celebrate a very special moment in all of our lives... Since October is officially signed!! They signed the record deal with Tooth & Nail, and are now the newest members of the T&N family. Thank you all for all of your prayers and support over the past 8 years (can you believe it has really been that long!!) Luke and I could not have made it to where we are in life without the Love, Faith, Support, and Prayers of all of our friends and family. We love and appreciate you all more than you will ever know.

Monday, December 10, 2007

"O Christmas Bush, O Christmas Bush"

Drum Roll Please.... The 2007 Graham Family Christmas Tree...
(We watched Christmas Vacations this weekend... can you tell!)

"The stockings were hung by the entertainment center with care..."

The Sentimental Tree

This post is for those of you who frown upon my tradition of having a pretty, themed tree each year. This is for those of you who say I am not sentimental, and don't care about my old traditional ornaments. Well this year I have decided to appease that group of people. I, my friends, have made a "Sentimental Tree". Yes... it is in the guest bedroom, but at least it is in my house. The tree is complete with a tree skirt made by Granny Turner, our first Christmas ornamant as tree topper, my "babies first christmas" ornament, homemade ornaments, and even an ornament made in brownies.

See people, I do care about traditions and I do have some ornaments that have sentimental value :)

Sunday, December 2, 2007

My Thai

I am not a big Thai fan... but my bosses LOVE it. So tonight the entire design team went out for Thai.
Ry and I looking pretty Fab in our winter attire.
The CID design team... Amber, Cathy, Chris, Me, Mike, Sandi, and Ryann.
I had to post this picture... it was just to funny to leave out. This is my foot print in the snow. Look carefully and you should be able to decipher that I have on my pointy, heeled boots. How fun is that?!?!?!

Snowing on Snowflake Drive

This morning Chris and I decided to get up at 6:30 to go for a walk before we started working. That's right people... even though I am away, I am still trying to maintain my healthy eating and exercise regime. So 6:30am we started out. No one was out put Chris and I and the snow plow guy.
Here is a shot of Blue Sky... it is pretty stunning... especially with snow covering everything and the Christmas lights on.

Although this little walk started as a way to get fresh air and a little exercise it turned into something so much more. Fresh snow had fallen throughout the night, so it was like we were stepping into a land that no one had ever stepped on. It was surreal to see a pure white road ahead of you and look behind and the only thing you saw were your footprints. Fresh snow is a remarkable thing. It is so clean and pure... it hides all the dirt and imperfections of the land and makes everything look beautiful. I walked along snowflake drive and marveled in the wonder of God's love... his forgiveness. He doesn't just cover up our sin and imperfections like snow covers the ground, he washes them clean. He makes us white as snow.

After our walk I persuaded Chris to make snow angels with me in this field in front of Blue Sky. Making my first snow angel was loads of fun... but I understand why children do this and not adults. It is COLD!!

The snow wasn't deep enough at my feet, so it kind of turned out like a snow/mud angel... oh well, it was fun.

Pure Panic

No pics will accompany this post... as we were in way to big of a PANIC on Friday to take any pictures. Let me start at the beginning. All Blue Sky units are individually owned. This past week owners began closing on units even though the design team had not yet finished the units. We were told that no owners or renters would be arriving until after December 5th, when we were scheduled to have all the units completed. However, on Friday we were informed that 4 owners were going to be checking in that night. When we questioned this we were told that once an owner has closed on a unit they are free to come and go as the please... they own it. Makes sense right... but the downside was that these four units were not ready for owners. Artwork was not hung, beds weren't made properly (that's were that electric staple gun in the previous post comes into play) and accessories were not placed. This called for a serious all hands on deck. Everyone was helping out... taking out trash, making beds, folding toilet paper into little triangles (yes... i did that) all for the sake of a wonderful first impression. Well we did it... we got them completed... 2 four bedroom units, and 2 two bedroom units were styled to the nine just in time for the owners arrival.

But as you can't see... we didn't take any pictures. Nothing to show for that day of hard physical labor. We have met some of the owners who have already checked in, and they all are extremely happy with their units. That is what it's all about... Right ?!?!?

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Rockies Are Calling, Denver Snow Falling...

On Thursday afternoon the CID design team arrived in Breckendridge, CO to style the 40 Blue Sky Units and the Common Areas. 16 suitcases later, leaving an item on the plane and having to flag the plane down to get it back, and 1 hour at the Hertz counter trying to upgrade our cars... Ryann, Amber, and I finally made it into the car and on our way from Denver to Breck.
Amber and I ... we made it!
Friday morning the snow started to fall. Ryann and I had to make a run to True Value Hardware to get an electric staple gun.. kinda scary... and on the way back to the jobsite we stopped on the side of the road to play in the snow. Check out that adorable winter outfit... white puffy jacket with fur, black scarf, and black houndstooth snow boots with my jeans tucked into them... now that is adorable! I could get used to this cold weather if I could dress like that all the time :)
That's all for now... I will try and keep an update of each days happenings... tata for now!!