Sunday, December 13, 2009


Refresh is finally here! I am so excited for tomorrow. Rudy Rasmus, Sally Morgenthaler, Mike Gaffney, Jim Griffith and Billy Abraham will be with us this week.

Please pray for the 155 campus ministry leaders who have carved out time to attend this event.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Ginko Love

Ever since we met our first ginko in Kentucky, we have loved this spectacular tree. There are three ginkos by Creighton's church. Sunday afternoon, we went for a walk (and to play in the leaves). We shot these fun photos.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Obsession de jour: Glee

Who has time for a new show in their life??

You do!
Glee is delectable. When my friends Alex and Rob (both men, both straight) told me about it, I thought, "Are you kidding?" Even if I was desperate to add a new show to my viewing repertoire, there is no way it would be a show about high school glee club. Well, I checked it out and I was hooked before I could text the words, "Don't stop believeing" to Rob and Alex.

Friday, September 4, 2009

40 days of prayer for campus ministry

This is one of my favorite ones- written by Bishop Scott Jones:

Day Nineteen (September 4th)
September 4th, 2009

Oh, God, you have given us a vision. Like the man of Macedonia asking Paul for help, we see a generation of young persons asking
if you exist,
if there is meaning in life,
if there is a church where worship is passionate,
if people care for the poor,
if there are safe spaces for deep conversations,
if community can still be created,
if racism and sexism can be overcome
if the Bible is your word
if a moral life is still possible
if . . .

You have also given us a vision of a church
that needs new life
that needs a new generation of leaders
that is growing
that has younger people
that has more people
that has more diverse people.

I thank you for campus ministers, student leaders, board members and supporters who pray, who give their money, who give their time and who yearn for the ministries that lead a spiritually hungry generation to become the passionate, gifted leaders of your church. Give us the wisdom we need to do our work well. Most importantly, help us be part of what you are blessing. In the powerful name of Jesus Christ we pray, Amen.

Author Bio:
Bishop Scott Jones has served as the bishop of the Kansas Area of the United Methodist Church since 2004. Prior to this, he served as the pastor of 3 different churches in Texas and taught on the faculty of Perkins School of Theology. From 1997 to 2004, he served on the board of directors of the SMU Wesley Foundation, being vice chairperson for the last five years of that term. His most recent books are Staying at the Table: The Gift of Unity for United Methodists (2008), United Methodist Doctrine: The Extreme Center (2002) and The Evangelistic Love of God and Neighbor: A Theology of Discipleship and Witness (2003). Scott is married to Mary Lou Reece, who is president of Reece Construction Company. They have three children.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Do you ever blog about blogging or blog about not blogging?

I talked to one of my friends the other day about this. She blogged about how she hadn't been blogging and I thought of the many times I have seen this phenomenon. We begin to feel pressure to write something insightful or witty or comment-worthy. We stress when we haven't blogged in a few days or weeks. Then we log on and start blogging about our non-blogging. We've all done it at one point or another.

Since I am first and foremost an expert blogger, I encouraged my friend with these simple rules to blog by.
1. Release yourself from the pressure of blowing our minds every time you sit down to write.
2. Release yourself from the expectation that you won't be ligit if you don't post everyday.
3. Get back in the swing of things by posting a photo or something funny that happened at Petsmart. Jot down a musing or a song lyric that is meaningful. Chances are, it will be meaningful to us too.

This is a window into your life. It is a way for us to connect with you. You don't need to wow us every time you sit down at your computer. Just tell me a little somethin.

To quote Facebook: What's on your mind? Share.

PS: That reminds me of a song.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

What does a Producer do?

I'm a Producer for a large church in Leawood KS.

What does that actually mean?
Seriously, I think I know what it means, but I may have a different definition for the word "producer" than others.

If I was a producer at your church, what would I be doing?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

40 days of prayer for campus ministry

Day Four (August 20th)
August 20th, 2009


We know students are thirsty for a relationship with You. Like the woman at the well in John 4, many young adults have never found the “living water” that You offer freely and without condemnation. Come Holy Spirit-quench their thirst to know the one, true living God.

Each time they gather for worship-meet them in their fellowship, the music, the spoken Word, and their prayers. Let Your Spirit of grace and freedom fall as two or more gather in Your name. Raise up a new generation of psalmists who sing of Your faithfulness. Inspire artists to enflesh the Gospel in every medium imaginable. As they seek Your face, let all Your goodness pass before them. For it is in worship that we discover that Jesus quenches our thirst to know God.

Each time a small group or Bible study meets-fill that space with grace, wisdom, and hope. Tie their hearts together with Yours. Let the Word be taught with clarity, authority, and truth. Help them find the support, encouragement, and the accountability they need to live out their faith in their college years and beyond. For it is in small groups that we discover that Jesus quenches our thirst to follow God.

Each time they serve their neighbor-whether it is across the city or around the globe-lead them by Your mercy. Empower them to live out the Gospel to the least, the lost, and the last. Build up their faith and the faith of those they go to serve in Your name. Allow their hearts to become impassioned for Your people throughout the earth. For it is in reaching out that we discover that Jesus quenches our thirst to serve God.

Each time Your people gather, speak to each student’s heart about who they are. Allow them to catch a glimpse of what they were created for. Help them see where their gifts and passions meet the world’s needs. Give them a vision for their life that takes a lifetime to accomplish. Call them to serve your Kingdom in their homes, in the workplace, and the public square. For it is in leading that we discover that Jesus quenches our thirst to serve others.

Our pray is that our campus ministries will be springs of living water in dry and weary lands-bubbling up and overflowing to quench the thirst of this generation of college students.

In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.

Author Bio:
Nikki Alexander is the coordinator for Refresh Campus Ministry Conference - refresh. Nikki works at The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood KS as the Event Producer in the Technical Arts Group.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Chronic(what)cles of Kindergarten

Whitby Alexander started Kindergarten today. I wonder if, in the minds of every mom out there - is this a sign of my baby girl growing up or a sign of me getting old? Seriously, I have felt very weathered lately. The fact that I still have a 3 year old helps a little with the yikes factor of aging.

Can I get a witness?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Outing with the kids for my birthday

It's the chronic-what-cles of my birthday. July 25th 2009 on Twitpic

Another birthday already?

Well, with dad out of town me and the monkeys made the most of our day. We started off with breakfast and quick playtime at Chick-fil-A. Then headed over to Deanna Rose Childrens Farmstead. Deanna Rose is a magical place (free!) where children can experience life on the farm. There are horses and chickens and goats - Oh My!
For a quarter you get a handful of feed and the goats with love you for it.

We had a fab time for about 3 hours. Went home and took a much-needed family nap.

Then around 3 we left to go pick up Creighton at the airport. Took him to dinner and the waitstaff at On The Border sang me a birthday song. Hey, free dessert...

Home by 8. Watched some Comedy Central. Good times.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

National Worship Leader Conference

What a privilege it is for Resurrection to host the NWLC 09!
To follow updates on twitter - use the hashtag #nwlc09.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Cow Appreciation Day

Chick-Fil-A hosted a "dress like me, get free chicken" day.
We walked in and the kids said, "Moo!" as I asked the manager, "Did we put in enough effort?"

The kids enjoyed a free breakfast and playtime this morning.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Favorite spot in my house

Over the past 8 months, I have fallen more and more in love with my house. Even though it was built only 20 years ago, it has an old soul. I love to sit and surf and sip coffee at the table while I oversee backyard playtime.
There are new discoveries all the time as well.
In April, I looked out the window everyday to see blooms emerge on my wisteria vine.
And, I discovered I have a peony and a cluster of white daisies (white daisies are the signature flower of all the women in my family).

Life seems so busy most of the time. Remember to sit and discover and be thankful.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Saint Pamela's Feast Day

Last summer, I shared In Memorarium, about our memory tradition remembering the life of my mom - Pamela.
Since the 21st of June was Fathers day, the kids and I spent the weekend with my dad. Knowing that my sister was going to come visit us in Kansas, I waited with the intention of sharing the Cheescake Factory tradition with her. I took off work Tuesday and Dana and I drove down to the Plaza to window shop and enjoy uninterrupted time - just the two of us. We walked over to CF for lunch.
It was a delightful time of memory sharing with a few tears.

We ordered Mom a cosmo and gave thanks to God for the time we did have with her, for the privilege of knowing such an extraordinary person.
Here's to you mom- we still miss you desperately.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Nothing says, "I'm a Texan" like....

Proclaiming it on the back of your trailer.

This photo was taken on our 36 hour road trip to Lubbock for Creighton's high school reunion.

Sunday, June 28, 2009


I had an interesting comment thread on my facebook wall. The Myers-Briggs personality inventory was kicked around a bit. We talked about the differences between Thinker and Feeler.
MBTI says that this is how people make decisions: Either as a thinker: logical, rational and based on what is believed to be "right", or as a feeler: subjective, emotional and based on how one feels about the situation.

I am a major FEELER.
Situational Ethics probably to a fault.
I don't give up on people.
Empathy and compassion rule.
I trust my gut and care about how actions affect the hearts of others.

I really appreciate my husband, a THINKER, who reminds me that our God set the law into place for a reason. He reminds me of the value of being realistic, objective and practical.

Was Jesus a thinker or a feeler?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

New idea for Production Staff photos

Is this cheesy?
I like the idea of the video monitor since we are the technical arts group. It may be on the verge of cheese but I think we're going to go with this - or something similar. Your thought?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Reflections on Father's Day weekend with dad

As I reflect on my time at the ranch, I have tried to put my finger on what is going on in my heart while I am there.
The picture I have is Me looking down at a version of me - or maybe it's the other way around - a version of me looking down at the real Me. I don't know which.

Being there should be relaxing and restful. The beauty and purity of being out in the country does calm my soul. The wide-open space, the delightful smells that waft through the clean air, the gorgeous view.... I love the thought of it.

However, it seems that when I am with my dad, his opinion of me takes over, and I move around with angst. I fear disappointing him - particularly when it comes to my kids.
He and his wife didn't have kids together. He was not around us much growing up either, so they have very little experience with small children. They do however, have lots of opinions about how children should behave. If my kids delay in obeying or make a bad choice, I freak out because of what they might think of me. I kept praying when I was there that God would help me release myself from anyone's opinion but my heavenly Father's. I want to be excellent - to give my whole self to God and not be affected by the opinions of man (not just any man - - my dad).

I feel like I turn into an ugly, impatient witch-mom when I am there. I had to apologize to my kids on the car ride home. Told them I wasn't very patient and gentle with them while we were there. Of course, they were like, "its ok mom."

They are always extravagant with grace and forgiveness.

When the kids were younger (little bitty), I simply felt clumsy and awkward. But now I often feel inadequate. I go through seasons of success and balance with the kids where I feel like I am shepherding them well. And then out of the blue - I'm out of control with no balance. Herding cats. Deaf cats. Cats with no common sense.

I could go on and on.

I'm not flogging myself about it. Just want to articulate these reflections so that I can continue to build awareness of certain tendencies. I just hate it when my flesh rears its nasty head. What's so good though - is that it reminds me of my need for God's transforming love, grace and power.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

My Wisteria!

So happy to discover I have a wisteria vine in my back yard.
I have had a love affair with wisteria since I first moved to Dallas in 98.
Here is a smidge of God's beauty - right outside my upstairs window.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Getting over myself

In march, I wrote a post titled, "Those People". These 2.5 months I had all but demonized the neighbor who we unaffectionately named, "deputy-no-bark".
Today when I got home, my children we over at his house, playing perfectly nice with his children. I was forced to make a decision. Do I watch out my back window, waiting for my kids to come back? Or, do I grow a pair and go over to their house and introduce myself.
You'll be proud to know that I watched from my back window. Just kidding. I swallowed my judgemental-self-ness and walked over there.
Not only was deputy no-bark friendly, he invited me into their home to show me around! His wife and I chatted about church and I invited her to Church of the Resurrection and we all had a jolly old time.

Glad to say that we're no longer "Those People".

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My friend likes to kill chipmunks

I shared my loathe for bunnies with my friend Twila (whose name has been changed to protect the fact that she is a ruthless killer).
She shared with me the pre-meditated fashion in which she traps and kills the pesky chipmunks around her yard.
After calling pest control and getting nowhere on her chipmunk problem. She decided to google up herself another option.

Twila's recipe for a dead chipmunk:

Ingredients: 5 gallon bucket. A long 2x4. Sunflower seeds.

Fill the bucket with water (about half full so the chipmunk won't know what you up to).
Lean the 2x4 on the edge of the bucket. This gives the chipmunk easy access to the top. Drizzle the sunflower seeds all the way up the board and atop the water in the bucket. Creating a layer of floating sunflower seeds makes the sucker-chipmunk think he will be able to stand on it.

The chipmunk will blissfully enjoy your sunflower seed gift. He will get caught up in the moment. You can imagine his surprise when he plunks into the watery grave you have prepared for him!

Incidentally, chipmunks are terrible swimmers. "They drown instantly", remarks Twila, "unlike mice who can swim for hours."

Sunday, June 7, 2009

I cut me some bangs this morning.

Woke up with Whitby's voice ringing in my ears, "Mommy, you have stripes on your forehead".
So I went to the desk and pulled out a pair of scissors. Cover the stripes, I will.
No big deal, they are only evident when my hair is straight.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Important Reminder

I want to remind everyone of the importance and awesomeness of corn skewers.
We grilled corn the other day and as if it wasn't amazing enough... we busted out the corn skewers and my children just WENT TO TOWN!
These things are amazing.
I own the vintage set I inherited from my mom. But, I saw some at Hyvee in the "seasonal" aisle.

Creighton's Corn on the Cob recipe:

Olive Oil.
Salt (we use Kosher).

Fill the base of a pyrex (or container of your choice) with olive oil and LOTS of Kosher salt. Spin each cob in the oil/salt mixture and then wrap it in foil. Toss it in the grill and OH MY...prepare for transcendence.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Renaming my blogroll

My friend Shannon pointed out that now with my new disdain for bunnies, I might want to consider changing the name of my blogroll formerly known as "trails I chase rabbits down".
For now, it will be simply called "blogroll".

Please submit your suggestions.
Here is what I am looking for:

1. Something that suggests intentionality and determination, and at the same time, open-ended spontaneity.
2. Something tangential (not unlike rabbit trailing) because it is descriptive of my blogging habits, ie. no rhyme or reason - one blog leads me to another and that one to another, and so on.
3. Something that is active, and fun to do.


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Dog Funeral

This is the liturgy we used during Starbucks funeral. It was very meaningful. Copy/paste it somewhere because you'll never know when you might need it!!

0 God, you created all that is, and you love all that you have made:
we come to you this day in grief and with thanksgiving. We grieve the death of our beloved Starbuck, who has been our companion on the way, and we thank you for the gift of his presence among us as an effective sign of the richness of your creation and of the generosity of your love; through Jesus Christ our Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Most merciful God, comfort us in our grief. Surround us with your love, that we may not be overwhelmed by our loss, but have confidence in your goodness; through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

One or more of the following or other appropriate passages from Holy Scripture may be read. A reading from non-biblical Christian literature may follow the biblical Reading(s).

Genesis 1:1-3; 19-25(26-31) (God creates all living creatures)

Genesis 2:18-20a(20b-25) (Adam names the animals)

After the Reading(s), the Officiant or other person appointed may give a brief homily. After or in place of the homily, those who are in attendance may be invited to speak words of remembrance or consolation.

The following form of the Prayers of the People may be used, or other appropriate prayers may be said.

In peace, let us pray to God.

0 God our Maker, from the beginning you have permitted us, the sons and daughters of Adam and Eve, to name our brother and sister creatures of earth, sea, and sky: We commend Starbuck to the arms of your everlasting love. Amen.
As our Savior Christ has taught us, we now pray,

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.

Minister and People

0 God of compassion, have mercy upon us; forgive us for our mistreatment and neglect of the creatures with whom we share this garden earth, for what we have done to harm them, and for what we have left undone to help them; we are truly sorry and fully repent, and we ask you to fill us with your Spirit, that we may care for one another, and for all your creatures, according to your will and in the fullness of your love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Most merciful God, we return to you Starbuck, a creature of your own making and your gift into our lives. We praise you for his beauty and strength, for his grace and power; we thank you for his faithful companionship in our joys and sorrows; and we bless you for the time during which you entrusted him into our care. Receive now Starbuck back into the arms of your everlasting love, 0 Giver of life, through whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ all that is lost to death is restored to life, and in whose Name we pray. Amen.

The Officiant concludes with one of the following:

The grace of our Savior Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit, be with us all evermore. Amen. [2 Corinthians 13:14]

And with that: I lay to rest my sweet Starbuck

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Smear Campaign

Bunnies are evil, disease infested vermin.
Bunnies are ruthless little murderers disquised in - um - soft, fluffy clothing.
Their pink eyes rage with lust for blood.

All bunnies must die.

Desire for the bunny will lead you down a path toward destruction.
The bunny is the harbinger of death.
Do not fall under their wicked spell.
They will show no mercy.

Never chase the bunny.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Last night I swerved to hit a rabbit.

But I missed.

He was too fast for me and the mini-van.
I talked myself down, "Wow, Nik, chill out - it's just a rabbit."

I realized at that moment, that I have never really experienced the desire for revenge before. But ever since Saturday when a bunny led my pup to his death, I really want to find an unsuspecting bunny and well, um, kill it.

A little harsh, you say?

Well wouldn't you agree that it's a little harsh to lead a dog straight into the grill of an oncoming car? Yeah. That's what I thought.

Murderous, evil little sirens.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

It's not your fault...

As I was dragging my dog out of the middle of the road, I watched as the girl (who hit Starbuck) and her mom (who had shown up within minutes) as they sobbed and held each other. Through her tears, the girl said, "I'm so sorry". Her mom repeated, "I'm so sorry this happened."

We exchanged numbers before we left the scene.

Creighton and I later relived the play by play of the accident, and we felt compelled to call the girl. Creighton talked to her briefly.
"I just want you to hear it from us, that this is not your fault." We do not blame you in any way."
She thanked him and said that it meant a lot for him to call.

Then we began to dissect the situation and found ourselves both trying to take the blame. We found all the blame we could muster up and beat ourselves with it for about 5 minutes.

Finally, we came to our senses and concluded that it was a tragic, freak accident of timing.

I think people obsess about finding fault. What is it inside of us that yearns for
someone to pin the blame on? Is it comforting? Does anger help take away some of the pain of loss and sadness?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

My heart has joined the thousand, for my friend stopped running today. ~Richard Adams, Watership Down

Our dog Starbuck chased his last bunny this morning at 7:45 am. He took off after it (while out for a quick morning pee), and ran straight into the street. In a split second - the car pummeled him. He never knew what hit him. He died instantly.

Sweet Starbuck, Master fetcher, ball dribbler, protector, patient playmate for the kids, brave leader for his brother Apollo. We will miss you terribly.

We had a sweet funeral for Starbuck today.
Creighton led us in a liturgy. Some neighbors joined us. We all took turns giving Starbuck a special gift and bidding him farewell. We buried him in the backyard underneath a Weeping Cherry tree we purchased for the occasion.

The thoughts that keep flooding my heart:
1. I am sooooo thankful it wasn't my kid running after that stupid rabbit.
2. In the blink of an eye, our lives can change forever (or end suddenly).
3. It sucks to walk around the house and see two of everything - two beds, two kennels, two dog bowls...
4. Apollo is pretty lost right now.
5. oh, and wow, we sure put a lot of money into that animal(totally worth every cent).

Monday, April 20, 2009

Photo ideas for staff pics

I need ideas for our department staff photos. The plan is to display framed pics in our office. I want them to look Cool-artsy-modern and a little bit tekky.
My friend Jeff is our fotog. We are trying to think of a unique way to shoot (ie. we experimented with a fish eye lens). Or something fun perhaps in post production.

Here is one of his initial ideas:
Don't mind the font - we will go with something different

It reminds me of the A-HA "Take On Me" MTV video.

Take On Me: Chris Griffin

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


When we began having children, we got serious about developing traditions for our family. Easter is one of my favorites. Well, until this year....
Creighton and I were involved in campus ministry which had us on the university calendar: Fall/Winter/Spring.
This year, because we both work in local churches, we are now on the umm liturgical calendar: Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter, Ordinary time, etc.

Since Canon was 1, we have spent Easter with my dad. The kids look forward to it every year because Dad takes them fishing, takes them for rides on the horse or the tractor or on the feed truck. Kimaw (his wife) hides what feels like hundreds of candy filled eggs all around the front and back yards. The kids spend half an hour at the break of dawn searching every crack and crevice for eggs. We attend worship at their charming traditional Methodist church and then come home to an enormous Easter feast.

we were unable, this year, to go to the ranch.

Here is what Easter weekend looked like this year:

Mom worked all day on Saturday.
The kids had a "play date" with our Jewish friends on Sunday morning.
Bethany (our nanny) fixed lunch and put kids down for an afternoon nap.
Creighton and I raced to the grocery to pick up some plastic eggs. Filled them with goodies and busted into the house shouting, "Who wants to have an egg hunt?!"

It was nasty outside so our egg hunt lasted about 3.5 minutes (living room, dining room, kitchen).

Improvising, we told the children that we were going to take them to a movie. What a great idea to tuck away for future Easter activities! We saw Aliens vs. Monsters. The kids loved it.

It is what it is, you know? We made the best of it. Turned out beautifully.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Facebook Song

Copy and paste this link (can't figure out how to make it active) to hear my Facebook song.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Whitby's first tooth!

Fact: At first, there are a lot of "firsts".

First tooth is one of them.
First bath.
First birthday.
First haircut.

There are less and less "firsts" as they get older. Whit is now 5. She has just lost her first tooth.

It was loose forever. She kept telling me everyday that she was going to lose the tooth. It took months. When it finally happened she was so shocked she cried!

Apparently, she twisted it out and it bled (a little). She asked me if she was going to die.

Now, where did I put those quarters????

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Obsession de jour: Barefoot Merlot

Usually skittish about trying new wine. Don't want to spend the money on a beverage I do not enjoy. Every once in a while though, I bust out something new just to expand my proverbial horizons.

Tonights purchase: Barefoot Merlot.

Pros: delish
Cute lable
3$ cheaper than Blackstone (my usual)

Is that God's blood?

At New City (5pm Sunday nights at Central UMC - KCMO), Creighton serves communion every week. This is the first time that my kids have participated in communion on a regular basis. They love it. Why wouldn't they? It's delicious!

As I tried to explain the holiness and sacredness of it, Whitby busted out with the (totally legitimate) question, "Is that God's blood?"

I nearly fell over laughing. Then I looked at her stone-cold expression and realized - - oh, she's serious.

Try to explain that one to a 5 year old.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Games and Toys

Today I had a great conversation about the Big Wheel.
As kids, we used to love the Big Wheel and cruise around on it constantly.

I started reminiscing about the other toys and games we owned and played as children.
Here are the ones that immediately came to mind:

Sunday, March 22, 2009


Lately our mornings have been such a bummer.

My children have been waking up grouchy and whiney. I don't know about you but I have always felt strongly that people who whine should be immediately punched in the throat.
This is a problem when the people are your children.

So I am trying to analyze what might be the source of this.
I think it might be - dare I say it - my parenting. I have been slacking in the mornings for the last few months. Cosmo is 3.5 how and is no longer in need of 24/7 supervision. So in the mornings, I have been letting the kids go down to the playroom and watch a kidshow or play a video game every morning when they get up. This has allowed me an additional 30-45 minutes of sleep.
However, I thought back and remembered the not-so-distant-past when I was getting up with them every morning and starting the day off with a morning routine.

Get dressed for the day
10 minutes of yoga
Sit in a circle and have a morning prayer
Bow to one another and say, "God Bless You."

As I thought of this simple routine, I realized that perhaps it is the lack of structure that gets my kids off to a rocky start in the mornings. I am planning to start the routine again tomorrow morning.

I will keep you posted....

Obsession De Jour:

My sister told me about a while back. I have been slow to check it out. But now I am obsessed. I want to be her. Go there now!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Those People

Thursday 9:50 pm. I realized that we had become "those people".

It was a long day so when I left at 9am I decided to let the dogs stay outside all day. All day turned out to be 12.5 hours. Apparently, the scoundrels barked at anything and everything that moved that day.
When I got home at 9:50, there was a note stuck in my door from the police who informed me that a neighbor called them about barking dogs at my residence but did not want to file an official complaint at this time. It was a warning....
3 minutes later, my next door neighbor came over and kindly confronted me about the dogs. Told me that they went at it non-stop all day long and ended with, "and this is not the first time, Nikki."
What a nightmare. We are "those people". The neighbors that everyone hates but won't say anything to their face.
Well, the good news is that we are teachable. Though slightly embarrassed, we are determined to do whatever it takes to silence the nuisance barking.
Not sure what the plan is - - I will let you know how it goes!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Shaped by the Gospel

"We pray that our lives will be shaped by the Gospel"

This is part of our nightly prayer with the children. They all know it. They all pray it. This morning I woke up with this prayer on my lips.
Frankly, I have to ask, "What do I really mean when I pray this?"

The origin of the word gospel is Good News. Does my life speak of good news?
Am I open to being shaped? Do I allow the teaching of Jesus to penetrate my will?
Do I live and work in a manner that provokes the questions for which the Gospel is the answer?

Friday, March 13, 2009

Woo Hoo!

No news really. Just wanted to post the photo I took yesterday of my sweet vertical.


Thursday, March 12, 2009

I broke one of my fashion rules today.

Jean on Jean.

I have felt strongly about no jean on jean for quite some time now. But today, because of apparent lack in my closet, I did it.
Friends, you have to be really careful when trying this. You run the risk of matronly or elementary school teacher.
Because the jeans and jean shirt are both a dark earth wash, and because I added a scarf, the combo is not too bad. However, in general, I do not condone the pairing of jean on jean.

I am BY NO MEANS a fashion expert!
But, here are a couple more of my rules:


Accessorize. A stylish pair of sunglasses can make you feel great even on the days you have dark circles and puffy eyes. I remember that my mom always looked put together - she was never without her sunglasses. Scarves and jewelry complete an outfit.

I try not to be too matchy with my jewelry. If I am wearing a turquoise ring for example, I don't go all out with earrings, bracelet and a necklace. Maybe necklace and ring. Or possibly bracelet and earrings. But it's better to have a splash of color than to overdose on it.

My friend Dagney told me today that "What Not To Wear" has a book - - WITH PICTURES.
It targets different body types and "problem areas" and gives specific guidelines for your wardrobe.

Also, I subscribe to a daily email called
It is a fashion email that shows current fashion trends (most of which are too over the top for me). It at least helps me to see what's going on out there in the world of fashion so that I don't get totally out of touch.

Your thoughts??

Friday, March 6, 2009


I want to encourage anyone out there who is getting oldish.

Try Yoga.

Ever since I got into it, I have felt healthier and stronger. My back feels great and I don't wake up with a stiff body.
Granted, you don't burn many calories like you do with Cardio. But as far as flexibility and strength go, it can't be beat.

If you are worried about the clear your mind meditation stuff - - most of the yoga I have seen in the past few years is simply fitness yoga.
I personally think the practice of yoga is very spiritual. I intentionally find moments in my poses to pray. Everytime I lift my arms to the sky or bring my hands to my heart, I whisper a little word of praise, "My all for you Jesus."

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Kingdom Beatitudes for a better world

1. Blessed are those that share what they have, for they will be a community of life.

2. Blessed are those that are able to enjoy the fruit of their labor, for they will be a community of honesty.

3. Blessed are those that stand together for equality, for they will be a community of justice.

4. Blessed are those that release their grip on their possessions, for they will be a community of freedom.

5. Blessed are those that feel the pain of others as their own, for they will be a community of mercy.

6. Blessed are those that teach their children Kingdom values, for they will be a community of hope.

7. Blessed are they that show Love instead of the Law, for they will be a community of grace.

Roy Soto
Red Del Camino, Costa Rica

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Check out this passionate and moving video about our Savior.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Why we don't have nice things....

This morning, my friend Melissa was searching for her phone everywhere in the office. She walked by me with the remark, "See, this is why we don't have nice things."
We both chuckled, and I thought about how many hundreds of times I heard that from my mom and grandmother because of how I treated the many fine things they had bought over the years.

At staff chapel this morning, the pastor walked us through a reading of Genesis 2:6-3:1.

2:6 Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, [b] and over all the creatures that move along the ground."

2:7 So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.

2:8 God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground."

2:9 Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. 30 And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food." And it was so.

3:1 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.

At first I was reflecting on the beauty of creation and that God called it good. I thought, "What an honor it is to be the keepers of this creation." He gave us dominion over all the plants and seed and trees and fruit and of all living creatures!

Suddenly, the statement from earlier that morning hit me. How poorly humanity has treated God's creation - which he has placed in our care.

Sure, it's a bummer that I cut my moms couch with a knife when I was 7. It was sad that I broke my grandmothers lead crystal vase and lost the ruby ring my mom gave me for graduation. We'll get over that.

But it is staggering to think about how we - the very children of God - have defaced, vandalized and abused the beauty He entrusted to us.

Will creation get over that? Will we?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


I like to think I am a pretty intuitive and sensitive person. But sometimes I guess I am unaware of how what I say flippantly, affects others (negatively).
On Facebook:
I think it is a joke that people try to sum up their entire religious views in a one-liner on their profile.
In response to this I jokingly wrote: Jesus loves you, I'm just his favorite.

Recently I friended someone on FB and they confirmed me.
38 minutes later, they deleted me and wrote me a note about how offensive it was for me to write that.
To this person, who is non-religious, it was self-absorbed and narcissitic (BTW there is a history there).

On the one hand, I think the (un)friend misunderstood the intent of my religious views. I was trying to make a statement that people should not take themselves so seriously. Also, I think I am funny.

The way it was taken, though, is what I am intriqued by this evening.

I'm not trying to make it more than it is, and I am not beating myself up. But it did make me sit up and think. I want to have better filters. I want to be aware of my words and actions, knowing that there are people out there who have differing views. I want to be salt and light in this world, not cause others to stumble.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


New City begins tonight!
New City is the service that Creighton is starting at Central UMC.
5pm Worship
6pm Meal
7pm Spiritual Formation classes

Come check it out!

Saturday, February 7, 2009


Poor little Whitby!

She cut her foot on a piece of glass in the garage yesterday. Yikes!

Guilt overcomes me as I think about the fact that there are shards of glass on the garage floor.

We (me, Canon, Whit and Cosmo) waited 5 hours to see a doc. Then two hours later - we headed home. Talk about quality time with the kids.

She's doing fine now - - children are so resilient.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Texas Independence Day Party: All Are Invited!

Our heart is to share the love of Texas to those here in Kansas.
Come one, come all!

Friday, Feb. 27th
Our house: 13009 Knox St.
Overland Park TX 66213