Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas!

One of the things we like best about our year to have our big family Christmas in Philly with my (Ashley) family is that we get to have our own Christmas morning at home.

The morning began with all of the kids piling on our bed for a few cuddles. Caedmon and Greg read to us about the very best gift ever given to the world 2000 years ago. We then talked about why we give presents on Christmas. After that, we let the kids look at their stockings before we all ate breakfast. Then the craziness began!

We are so blessed to have family, and supporting churches who shower us with their love and support at Christmas time. Here are a few pics.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Scrapbook at
Photo Tinks by

12 inches and counting

It has been snowing steadily all day long! We have about 12 inches outside our back door.
The kids had a blast sledding and playing out in the snow today. Here are a few pic from this morning. There is a lot more snow on the ground now!

It has been snowing steadily all day long! We have about 12 inches outside our back door.
The kids had a blast sledding and playing out in the snow today. Here are a few pic from this morning.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Long week

I am sorry it has been while since I posted anything. It has been a long week. Greg has been having back spasms at night which have keep both of us awake. We have been dragging through each day bleary-eyed.

Last night the pain got so bad we decided at 4am it was time to go to the emergency room. We are so blessed to live with students who are willing to come over at any time of day or night to lend a hand!

Amazingly the ER was not crowded, and we got right into a room. Greg's x-rays came back clear so the Dr said it was a muscle problem. 1 Demoral shot and a Valium later, Greg was in la-la land.

He has slept most of the day. His back pain seems to have dulled a bit, we will see how tonight goes.

I would appreciate your prayers for our family right now.

On top of it all it appears that we are in for 10+ inches of snow over the next couple days! I restocked the pantry this afternoon so we are all set for the winter wonderland. Check back for pictures!

Friday, December 11, 2009

ACF Christmas Party!

Last night was our final ACF large group meeting of the year. What a night! We had about 50 students in our little apartment! I have never seen so much food fly off the counter so fast. Students came dressed as their favorite Christmas song or in an ugly sweater.

Here is a slideshow of the nights festivities.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser

Our students hosted a spaghetti dinner on Saturday night to raise money for scholarships to attend a couple upcoming conferences. It was exciting to see them take hold of an idea and work so hard to make the time so fruitful! Our 3 previous attempts to raise money (car washes) were ALL rained out-- we knew rain couldn't hold us back this time. But SNOW could! It wasn't much (2-3") but enough to keep some folks from coming out. In all, about 25 people joined our students to hear about ACF and the conferences (Urbana and Jubilee). Several students spoke about the impact the fellowship had on their lives and what they hoped to learn from the conferences.

For the low turnout, we were thrilled to have raised $570... and a few more folks want to send checks! Praise God for the great time!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

This is what we do on our nights off!

Wednesday nights are fun around here. It is one of the few nights that we don't have students over, so we have a good time together as a family! Here is a pic of Greg and the kids goofing off tonight.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Something for which to be Thankful

One of the students from ACF was baptized last Sunday at a local church!
Check out the Video.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser

Check out this awesome video Greg put together to promote the ACF Spaghetti fundraiser dinner.

Anyone in town should come and hear about all the amazing things the Lord is doing in the lives of the students in ACF.

Dec 5th 5:30-7:30 at Faith Community Church in Roslyn.

If you can't make it to the dinner but would like to contribute to the scholarship fund click on the donate link below.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Joy in Suffering

I continue to be amazed at how the Lord works in my life "according to His good purpose" (Phil 2:13) In my own study time I have been studying the fruit of the spirit. This week I am learning about Joy.

One of the concepts I am learning is that Joy is "the supernatural result which flows from the glorious discovery of our Lord and Savior in every circumstance where we wish to find him."

Did you catch the word EVERY?

In prep for my Tuesday night study with the girls (as I like to call them)I have been looking at Acts 16:16-40. This passage describes the beating and imprisonment of Paul and Silas. This is a very familiar passage. I can still remember Sunday school lessons with the flannel board cut outs of Paul and Silas in prison praising the Lord.

Paul and Silas discovered the power of God through difficulty. How encouraging to recognize the strength to stay! Because he did the Jailer and his entire family have their names written in the Lamb's book of life!

Here is a video I am going to show tonight about one woman's story of suffering.

Jer 29:13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

Seek and find the Joy.

Monday, November 16, 2009


Below is a picture Greg's mom took of Cole while they were here taking care of the kids in October. It makes me laugh every time I look at it.

100 awesomeness points goes to someone who can come up with the best caption...Leave a comment below.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Tuesday nights I (Ashley) lead a small group bible study for 10-12 students. This semester we have been going through Acts. This week we are looking at Acts 14. In this chapter Paul and Barnabas perform miraculous "signs and wonders" in the name of the Lord. The people in Lystra misinterpret these acts and start to worship them as gods. Paul and Barnabas were so distraught at idea of taking the place of God, and being worshiped that they tore their clothes. They tried to explain the good news of Christ with the people, but the they would not listen.

This got me thinking about idolatry in our culture. On the surface this commandment seems a bit outdated. People are not making golden calves to bow down to....are they?

I ran across this video in my research for small group tonight.

I like what Mark Driscoll says at the end of the video. The commandment that seems to be the least relevant "may be the most relevant commandment of all."

Monday, November 9, 2009

Quote of the Day

I am currently re-reading the Mark of the Lion Series by Francine Rivers. I highly recommend it to anyone. I am overcome by the goodness and sovereignty of the Lord each time I read anything by Francine Rivers, but especially this series.

I read this last night and made it my own prayer to to Lord.

Search me, Lord, and cleanse me. Let me be a tool in your hands and not a slave to my weakness.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


My bible study time this morning centered on 1 Corinthians 13 and the meaning of Agape love. This is a familiar passage to many. The phrase that stuck out to me was "Love is not proud". I looked up several passages about pride and one that hit me between the eyes was Psalm 10:4

In his pride the wicked does not seek him;
in all his thoughts there is no room for God

Did that take the wind out of you too? Yesterday from the time my alarm went off until I fell asleep putting Abby to bed I was busy. I went from one thing to the next without one thought turning to the Lord. I was frustrated with all I had to do, and then pride reared it's ugly head. That led to quarrels and me being short with the kids. Sound familiar?

I read this poem this morning.
My name is Pride. I am a cheater.
I cheat you of your God-given destiny...because
you demand your own way.
I cheat you of contentment...because you
"deserve better than this."
I cheat you of knowledge...because you already
know it all.
I cheat you of healing...because you're too full of
me to forgive.
I cheat you of holiness...because you refuse to
admit when you're wrong.
I cheat you of vision...because you'd rather look
in the mirror than out a window.
I cheat you of genuine friendship...because
nobody's going to know the real you.
I cheat you of love...because real romance
demands sacrifice.
I cheat you of greatness in heaven...because you
refuse to wash another's feet on earth.
I cheat you of God's glory...because I convince
you to seek your own.

I am Pride. I am a cheater.
You like me because you think I'm always looking
out for you. Untrue.
I'm looking to make a fool of you.
God has so much for you, I admit, but don't worry...
If you stick with me
You'll never know.

Beth Moore-Praying God's Word

Father, please help me to always make room in my thoughts for you, God. Don't allow me to continue on in pride that stops me from seeking you. Amen.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Be it ever so humble...

there is no place like home!

That's right, we are home! Greg and I had a wonderful time on our trip out west! The Lord poured out blessing after blessing. Seriously, I would love to sit down with each of you and tell you about our journey day by day! I do not want to bore you, so I will just hit the highlights here. Friend me on Facebook to see all the pics.

Our first morning in CA we went down to breakfast and noticed several guys with guitars headed out to the patio outside the breakfast area. Greg asked someone what was going on out there. It turns out that KUTLESS, our favorite Christian band, was playing a worship set for a small gathering of Christian Radio Reps. The guy Greg asked was the lead singer for Thousand Foot Krutch, another Christian band. He let us join him to hear Kutless. After the devotion time we met a couple members of the band. What a way to start our trip!

Two of our six days in LA we went to Universal Studios...It was a lot of fun. Here are a few pics.

The other 4 days we spent exploring the city and up into are pics from those days.

The last 3 nights of our trip we spent in Las Vegas. Greg and I have always wanted to see Vegas, so we had a blast walking around and seeing all the hotels. We bought tickets in advance to see a Cirque Du Soleil show, and it was fun. We also had fun in Madam Tussaud's seeing all the wax figures. Our last night in Vegas we decided spur of the moment to go see Phantom of the Opera at the Venetian hotel!
Here are a few pics from Vegas.

Over all we had a great trip. I don't think either of us could pick out one certain thing we did or saw as our favorite. Our favorite part of the trip was just being together. It was nice to rediscover that we are also best friends...not just Mom and Dad, or any of the other hats that we wear each week.

Thank you for your prayers.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Hollywood, here we come!

Tomorrow morning Greg and I are headed west! We have been planning this trip in celebration of our 10 year anniversary for over a year. It is hard to believe it starts tomorrow!

Greg's parents are here to take care of the kids while we are gone...keep them in your prayers.

Come back in 10 days to see some pics!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


The PJ party went very well. I am still recovering from staying up until 3:30am! We had 22 girls come for all/part of the night.

The night started off with a HUGE game of Apples to Apples, followed by our group's favorite game... Catch Phrase! And what sleepover would be complete without a silly game of Truth or Dare! I have not laughed that hard in a long time!

Our discussion on Purity went well. We talked about it being more than Physical intimacy, but also a mindset. Instead of wanting to know where to draw the proverbial "line" in a physical relationship we talked about how to honor God in all parts of our dating or non-dating relationships.

Towards the end of the discussion part of the night one girl asked the question, "I know how to spot Mr. Wrong, but how do I know when it is the right person at the right time?" To answer her question I told everyone the story of how the Lord brought Greg and I together.

We ended the night by watching the movie "The Ultimate Gift". I highly recommend it.

Thank you for praying for us. We had a good time and a really good discussion about things that are affecting these girls right now.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

It's PJ Party Time!

This Friday night I will be hosting the ACF girl's PJ party! This has traditionally been one of our best attended events. 20-30 girls will pack into our apartment to share a lot of laughter, food, and discussion on a topic that is affecting their lives.

Our topic for Friday night is Purity. This is an area that has come up a lot in my small group during prayer request/accountability time. Please pray for the Lord to soften hearts and guide our conversation Friday night.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Resisting the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit has been on my mind a lot lately. I am currently doing the Beth Moore study on the fruit of the spirit in my own study time and the small group bible study that I have been leading for a few students is going through the book of Acts. It is a neat combination. I can read about the fruit and then see it in action in the lives of the apostles in the early church.

Last week in small group we talked about the stoning of Stephen in Acts 7. One verse from that passage has been resonating with me this week.

Acts 7:51- You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit!

These are pretty tough words Stephen hurdles at the Sanhedrin.

I have to be honest, they pierced me as well. I know full well that I can slip into being stiff-necked almost without realizing it. You know the hard-hearted feeling I am talking about. It happens most often when I am tired, overwhelmed, and too busy to find time to spend with the Lord. I choose to resist the Holy Spirit instead of being filled with it.

It reminds me of something Caed told me when he was 4. He has always had impulse control issues. Controlling his body when he is angry is hard, especially when he was younger. We were talking about it one time after an episode and he told me "Mommy, it is like there is a different, ugly Caed that comes out and I don't like it"

I know exactly how he felt.

Take a few minutes with me this Monday morning to bow your heart to the Lord and ask to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Merrymead Farm

Friday afternoon we surprised the kids, picked Caed up from school early and headed over to Merrymead Farm. It was nice to do something as a family (even if the corn maze was not open!). The kids still had fun seeing the animals, and playing around with the fall decorations. Here are a few pics.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

And The Moment You've All Been Waiting For...

Our LONG overdue newsletter. We had hopes of writing one in late July after returning from our family/ministry trip to Florida, but one thing after another sidetracked us. Once August hit, we were in overdrive as we prepared for our students to return. In any case, we are thankful for what God is doing here and excited to share it with you!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Cole is 1!

Today is Cole's first birthday! It hardly seems like it has been a whole year since he came into the world. We are having a little party for him tomorrow, but I put together a little slideshow of pics from his first year of life. Enjoy.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Family Fun day Saturday

It has been a while since we had a whole day just for family fun! Today we hit up a couple local town street festivals. The kids had fun. There was a car show, kids games, a fire engine and tons of local artisans selling their work.

We are going to end the day with a movie...but I will share some pics from today before I go work on dinner.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Rest in the Lord

Oh for a nice bench to sit on. This picture reminded me of how much I need to rest physically, mentally, and spiritually in the the Lord.

Things have not slowed down a bit around here. Hence the lack of blogging. I am glad the Lord never sleeps, that makes Him PERFECT for campus ministry! ;)

Please pray for us as we seek to find a good balance of ministry, family and rest time.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Abigail's First Day at Preschool!

We just got home from Abby's first day at her new preschool. She LOVED it! It is a small program at a local church, a small pond for my shy little fish to swim in.

She had such a good time that she did not want to leave. She came home in an aweful mood! Oh well.

Here are a few pics.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Refreshed but Exhausted!

We had a great weekend retreat despite the rain on Friday and Saturday. It was nice to get away from the pressures of home/school and concentrate on learning and fellowship. Most of us didn't get to sleep until after 2 each that is where the exhaustion comes in!

Gibson was an inspiring teacher for the weekend. We were refreshed in a sobering way. Hearts were open and moldable this weekend...what an answer to prayer!

Here is a group pic we took as we were leaving...the only time we saw the sunshine.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Refresh in the Poconos!

Here we come!

We are leaving this afternoon for a weekend retreat in the Poconos with our ACF ( Arcadia Christian Fellowship) group. We have 21 people going this year! Our theme is REFRESH. Gibson Largent, a pastor from a local church is going to be our speaker for the weekend.

Please pray for a meaningful time together as a community and an intense time of spiritual growth our students.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Abigail is 5!

Yesterday was Abigail's 5th birthday! It is hard to believe my sweet little girl is so big! We had a Tinkerbell themed party at Chuck E Cheese. Here are a few pics.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Catching up

I don't even know where to start. We have been going going going since Thursday last week. Greg planned a weekend of activities to get our ACF community up and running for the semester.

Friday night we hosted a game night here in our apartment. Catch Phrase has become one of our favorite group games. We had to close our open screen door and windows so we would not disturb our neighbors with our groans and laughter. Good times. ;) (I am so glad the kid's rooms are at the end of our long hallway so they cannot hear a thing!)

Saturday evening we met at the Castle for a Rita's Run. We ended up bringing out Rita's back to our place and watching a movie then chatted until late.

Sunday night we planned a movie night. After the movie we rocked out to Guitar Hero World Tour until our voices were all but gone (about 1 am!) . Whew I am tired just telling you about it all!

I will end this post with a pic I just HAD to share. This is the plate of our of our students who really enjoyed the brownie pie, ice cream, whipped cream, chocolate syrup and butter cake all while expressing his knack for creating art with food!

Gotta love it!

Friday, September 4, 2009

The first ACF and (almost) family emergencies!

Last night was the first ACF large group meeting of the semester followed by the after party in our apartment. We had a good turn out for the first meeting. There were quite a few new faces, which is always exciting. We were also blessed by several people from local churches who brought some yummy snacks!

Now to the almost family emergency....(I KNEW I should have put Caed and Abby to sleep instead of letting them watch a movie!)

About halfway through the after party Caed runs out into the living room with a panicked look on his face telling me to follow him. He said "Abby swallowed a magnetix marble." I run down the hall thinking she is choking. She was breathing fine but very scared... All I could think at that point was...what a great night for a trip to the emergency room!

We called the Dr and she said that since it was small, round and smooth it should pass by itself. Whew! Never a dull moment around here!

Here is a pic of the magnetix piece.

Praying for a swift and painless passing;)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

ACF Leaders Team

We just had our first ACF leaders meeting for this year. Oh how we have missed these guys! (And by "guys" I mean 1 guy and 10 girls including me!)

When we first began working with ACF 2 years ago, 10 people attending our large group would have been a good attendance night! How times have changed! We are all excited to see how ACF is going to grow and change even more this year!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Semester has Officially Started!

First year students moved in Friday morning...the rest of the students get back on Monday! YEAH! We have a lot of things already planned for ACF (Arcadia Christian Fellowship) so we can hit the ground running this year. Check out the flier we put up all around campus. Notice our brand new logo designed by a friend!

We are so excited about this semester and can't wait to see what the Lord is going to do!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

One, Two Punch

It has been a while since I tortured you, um I mean shared with you some family pics;)

Caed and Abby think that Cole is their very own rag doll. Now that he is crawling, pulling up and climbing he is a rag doll that wrestles! Poor baby!

This is Caed showing off Cole's nasty one, two punch on his friend Matthew.

I love that everyone in this pic is happy but Cole.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Ummm, Wow!

Friends and Family,
Before reading on, take a look back at the 5-40-106 Challenge that we gave our students in April. The first section challenged our students to "pray regularly for opportunities to share Christ with 5 friends." I also took this Challenge and was praying for 5 people. In all honesty, I wish I could tell you I was more faithful about praying regularly than I actually was! God is still gracious and is delighted to answer according to His purposes.

One of the guys I was praying for was "Sam". Sam and Dave were good friends and were the first two guys to come to the Guys Night I started in February. We built a good relationship but one that has only yielded a couple conversations about God and faith. Until last week. I've edited (and punctuated) the conversation he started with me over text last week.

Sam: Hello There old friend.
Greg: Hey! You back?
Sam: Not yet. This weekend though... quick question. You're a Christian, right?
Greg: Yes.
Sam: I wanna find a religion to believe in. I'm so lost as to what's out there, so I could use some guidance. I know there's more out there and I want your help to explore it all.

How exciting! Pray with me for "Sam" and the opportunity the Holy Spirit is giving me to share Christ with him.

Before the Throne

This morning I read Rev 4. In this chapter John describes what he saw when his spirit was ushered unto the throne room of God.
This is what Beth Moore had to say on the subject...
"John had the perspective-changing opportunity to do something all of us secretly wish we could do. For a little while recorded in Rev 4 and onward, he got to see life from heaven's perspective. His description implies something tremendously profound: everything else in existence is most accurately described only in its relationship to the throne of God."
How would our view of the world, our lives and struggles change if we viewed life as it stands in relation to the throne of God? Do we believe that the King of Kings can manage our life and problems?

I have been singing this song all morning since I read about the the throne of God...

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Collected Thoughts

There has been a recurring theme in my life the past 2 weeks. You know the kind...when it starts as a whisper of an idea, then it comes up in your day to day life, then it comes around again and you get blindsided and it nearly knocks you off your feet!

Here is the concept.

The Lord uses the circumstances in your life to help you more fully understand His Word.

The apostle John was sent to the island of Patmos to work until he died of exhaustion, starvation, or exposure, whichever came first. I can imagine his aged, wrinkled skin hanging from his bones as he worked on that rocky island while He wondered why the Lord had not yet chosen to take him home to heaven. Then the Lord blessed him with this revelation from heaven. John saw many wondrous things, but what I read in chapter 7:15-17 brought me to tears. Read it like you were John on that Island...
15b He who sits on the throne will spread his tent over them.
16Never again will they hunger;
never again will they thirst.
The sun will not beat upon them,
nor any scorching heat.
17For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd;
he will lead them to springs of living water.
And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes."
I love that the Lord gave John this promise right when it would mean the most to him.

The same God uses his same words to reach us right where we are.


Abby, Cole and I are back in Philly after our 2 weeks in Florida! We had a great time with my sis and her family. Tiring, but fun! I didn't realize how exhausting it was until I got home and just collapsed!

Slowly but surely we are getting back into the swing of things. The kid's school has not started yet, so we have a couple weeks to chill before things get going.

I have a few thoughts to share about what the Lord has been teaching me these past couple weeks. I will go collect them while I fold and put away a MOUNTAIN of laundry and then get back to you.
Thanks for being patient and coming back to check up on us. I did not have a lot of free time to blog in fl. ;)

Sunday, August 9, 2009


This is the view Abby, Cole and I have had the past couple days! Nice, huh?
Friday night I drove up to Ponce Inlet to visit with Greg's parents for the weekend. The kids have been sick and not sleeping well at my sister's house so it has been nice for all of us to rest for a couple days. We are headed back to Melbourne tonight...
Sorry I have not been able to blog much. Taking care of 4 kids age 4 and under takes up the bulk of my time these days ;)