Strange Family Adventures | September 2020

September kicked off with lots of the same things from August…softball for Emma, soccer for Eli, still moving forward with in person school in the COVID age (Praise the Lord!), and lots of other fun things.  Emma started playing volleyball.  The weather started giving some hints of fall, so we ate outside in the evenings, took a picnic after church, and knocked out more projects around the house.  We enjoyed our fire pit several evenings and Eli even got to take a tractor ride in the front yard with our neighbor as they spread the dirt a friend of ours brought over for us.  

Clint and I spent a fun Saturday evening out with some dear friends…no kids!  Then we spent the whole day as a family with some other dear friends out on the lake all day.  The purpose of the lake trip was to try and get Emma and Eli up on the wakeboard.  They both were gamers and gave it their best!  I was super surprised that I got up on the wakeboard, but it was worth it to earn some street cred with the kids!  We spent the day tubing and just having a great time together.  It was a nice break from the regular routine.  

Emma ran for student government at school.  She didn’t win, but she had a blast making her posters…
“There’s no dilemma, vote for EMMA” “Want change? Vote STRANGE.” She did great with her speech and had a lot of fun in the process.  She is really embracing our middle school philosophy of trying everything at least once!’’
The highlight of September for our family was definitely Fall Break!  The last week of September has become a family favorite for us.  We hit the road mid-morning on Saturday and were at the beach by late afternoon.  This trip we changed things up a bit to maximize the fun and relaxation.  Clint worked each morning of the trip (have I mentioned lately how much of a blessing it has been for our family that he can work from anywhere??!!).  I got up early and walked the beach and read most mornings while the kids slept and Clint started working.  When the kids woke up, I took them to the pool until Clint finished for the day.  Almost each day, we went out to lunch at some of our favorite places so that we could spent the afternoon and early evening out on the beach.  
This year we played frisbee, hit the volleyball, dug holes, went for walks, and didn’t have to be anywhere at anytime….it was perfect!  We ate at our favorites: Pampano Joe’s, The Donut Hole, The Back Porch, Fudpuckers, Dewey Destins, and Whataburger.  We also discovered Pepito’s and have added that to our list.  As always, we spent part of a day jet skiing in the bay and had a blast looking at houses and just being outside.  We did a little shopping, but mostly played on the beach until late.  One evening the sunset was so pretty and we ended up with some fun family pictures.

September 1 | We fell short in our @NCCSEagles Middle School softball game today, but I’m so proud of our girls and how hard they are working! It’s a blast coaching them all! I’m also so glad that @clintstrange32 got some great footage of our girl up at bat today. It’s such a joy to have a front seat to watching Emma do what she loves to do! #GoEagles#WeAreNCCS#NCCSFamily#7000days#PromisedHerMoesForAHit
September 3 | NCCS Chapel “There is nothing in this world that can bring you joy, fulfillment, or satisfaction. Only Jesus can do that.” Such a great word today from our @NCCSStudentLife Director Parker Smith. He pointed us to John 4 and the story of the Woman at the Well to remind us to stop going to the well that this world offers…seek the Living Water that can only be found in Christ.
Will you join us in praying that God will help us stay focused on pursuing Him and His best for our lives?

September 6 | Beautiful day! Picnic after church at the Logan Farm Park followed by some volleyball and soccer with Emma and Eli. Long afternoon naps for the win!And closed out the evening with friends at our @cedarcrestchurch Lifegroup Labor Day cookout. What a day! #7000days

September 7 | FAMILY TRADITION Today’s the day. Eli wanted to learn how to make the family cinnamon rolls. A recipe that has been handed down for generations. Wait for it…wait for it. #7000days#LoveThisGuy
September 10 | Straight from the @NCCSEagles Varsity Volleyball Game to Emma’s first ever volleyball practice. She’s excited to be playing with the City of Acworth program this fall. We love these opportunities to get to know our neighbors in our awesome city! Thanks @acworthparksandrec for so many great sports and programs! @visitacworth#WeLoveAcworth#7000days
September 12 | “The Bible tells us to weep with those who weep; it doesn’t tell us to judge whether they should be weeping.” @hbcharlesjr
Weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Romans 12:15-16
Lament pulls the pain close.
Lament starts with a humble posture. It communicates: “I’m here. I’m sad too. Let’s talk to Jesus, because we need his help.”

September 13 | I love the pretend fall we have a few weeks before the real one hits. #GeorgiaForever#SundayNapsAreBestOutside
September 19 | 5 YEARS I’m so proud of my friend @jmritchey and the legacy of grace and joy that he has left for all of us. 5 years ago today he stepped into the presence of Jesus and many of us have never been the same. Those of us who were privileged to count JM as a friend and colleague experienced Jesus in a way that I’m not sure that I could adequately explain. I met JM when he was in middle school @NCCSEagles and had the remarkable privilege of being a part of hiring him at NCCS after he graduated from @libertyuniversity. To this day, the sound of his name and the mention of a quality JM prank brings a smile to the face of all who knew him. He pursued people for the sake of Christ in a way that I’ve not seen before. We are all better because of John-Michael. His wake is a big one and every bit of it is about JESUS. #WellDone#JMR

Here are some thoughts I shared the week of his passing:

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ-by grace you have been saved- – Ephesians 2:4-5
September 20 | This weekend was good for my soul! Friday Night girls night with just Emma. Saturday meant volleyball practice for Em, Eli’s first soccer game, dinner and donuts with dear friends, and word searches with the word search master. Sunday brought @cedarcrestchurch with a powerful message on Hope from Cody Harmon and a full day at the lake with precious friends. It started out super cool on the water and ended with sweet sunshine on our faces. Eli refused to be thrown off the tube when it was just him. Both kids tried wakeboarding for the first time and it turns out old Mom can still do it! This weekend was a great warmup for Fall Break! #7000days

September 20 | Emma Kate Creates is officially launching their line of scrunchies. EKC has the following colors: black, navy, gray, denim, red patterned, red, yellow, light blue, gray patterned, pink chevron, light teal patterned, and dark teal patterned. $8 for a pack of three scrunchies…you choose the colors.

EKC is raising money for her next mission trip. Thanks for your business!

September 22 | Smiles. Serious. Silly.It’s such a blast to assistant coach our @NCCSEagles Middle School softball team. These young ladies are a blast and I’m so blessed to get to hang out with them several weeks each year. And this evening…they won a big game. So proud of each of them! #GoEagles#WeAreNCCS#NCCSFamily
September 29 | To whomever invented Fall Break, we salute you. Well done! Great idea! #7000days#SunsetWalksAfterDinner#YesPlease
October 2 | Pulling back into our beloved Acworth grateful for the time away with my favorite people. These pictures are the highlight reel and only capture a small piece of this week. Fall Break came at just the right time for our crew. We all love the beach and have some of our favorite restaurants and things to do that we all looked forward to. Those were all great, but this year our favorite was spending several evenings out on the beach throwing the frisbee, digging holes, and hitting the volleyball. We rested, we ate (way too much), we laughed, we read, we played lots of Uno…Eli even played against himself several times to the entertainment of us all, and we caught up with each other and just chatted about whatever was on our minds. Coming home with full hearts, excited for the season ahead, and planing already for the next time of Sabbath as a family. So grateful for the way the Lord orchestrates these intentional rhythms of renewal.

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