Thursday, April 16, 2015

Prom, 2015

A girl. Her date. A fancy dress. Her friends. A beautiful day. This is our Prom Story.

Audrey was asked by her boyfriend to prom with a cheesy breakfast pizza prom-posal to which she said yes (and I said thank you because I had just finished up a long run and was starving). 
Then she and I dress shopped. If you recall from last year, we discovered prom dresses can  cost more than yours and mine wedding dresses did. That didn't change this year. However, armed with that knowledge we explored more avenues, found some disappointing dead-ends and walked away from more than one gorgeous but over-our budget dress before finding one. And we found shoes. And she already had jewelry she was willing to wear again. And the next day we ordered flowers. It was like a prom miracle!
Her date had to do some shopping too and oh the angst we (meaning the rest of us enduring her woeful tales) went through discovering how stores display their ties and that we (meaning her) don't like patterned ties but stores don't... blah, blah, blah... He (meaning first his mom and then her) finally found both a suit and a tie that coordinated. Bless us all!
The day of prom a pile of girls came over and overtook her bathroom and bedroom and street parking. There was hairspray, nail polish, curling irons, bobby pins, hairspray, makeup, jewelry and hairspray aplenty. It was as if Claires, Ulta and a department store dressing room collided. Their small group leader did the girls' hair while I consulted, helped make adjustments and fed them. Then all at once they scattered to pick up dates or be picked up and off we went for pictures. 

 We all met up again, this time with the boys and flowers and parents and siblings for pictures. These are the order of pictures that were on my camera and there is no use arranging them in any other order. 

I snagged this one testing out camera settings and lighting and such.
 This is one of the best candid ones. You see Audrey's natural gift for drama- some girls just have it. Also, let's note the tall boy's hair- some guys just have it. 
The three friends. 
 What the guys do while waiting for all the girl pictures to be taken.
 I'm really grateful someone suggested Audrey and I get a picture together. You see, I dressed up extra nice for the occasion. Not really. It was also the weekend of the Zumbro races and I didn't run it because of prom so I wore my shirt in honor of my friends who were. (I'll be back in two years, Zumbro, in two years.)

 And then someone's heels had to get stuck in the soft dirt. 
 Better lighting, more relaxed kids.

 We snapped picture after picture of friends, family, flowers before some final group shots.
 That lasted like two seconds. 
 The Grand March went swiftly along considering how many students participated and soon we were taking final pictures. All day, while the flurry of prom preparation whirred in the basement, Bill was prepping bikes and packing the camper for a race he and Ben were leaving for right after the Grand March but thankfully he cleaned himself up and loved on his girl. 

 They had a really nice night eating out, going to the dance, making good choices for themselves and for their friends, going to after prom and winning gift cards and giant tubs of candy, playing lazer tag, coming home super late and sleeping all afternoon the next day. 

The end.

Friday, April 3, 2015

The Gift

We had glorious weather earlier this week. A parent chose to drive their car with the top down to pick up kids from school. I saw them and despised them. Them and they're fancy top-down car. Who are they anyway?

And then it struck me how my heart was so evil over such a nice thing to be able to have and to be able to do.

He was despised and rejected by men...He was like someone people turned away from; He was despised, and we didn't value Him. Isaiah 53:3
 I've often pridefully thought that if I had been there in Jerusalem three thousand years ago, I wouldn't have turned against Jesus. I wouldn't have shouted with the mob "Crucify Him!!". But in that moment when my own sin flared up before me I knew I was a part of the crowd. 

But He was pierced because of our transgressions, crushed because of our iniquities; punishment for our peace was on Him, and we are healed by His wounds. Isaiah 53:5
Today is the day we wrestle with the truth. It's heart versus heart. Jesus came for this very reason. Of all the days, this is The Day.

And this is also The Gift. 

This is where it doesn't make sense. We'll work to justify it, to reason it out but it always comes out lopsided. It was meant to be that way and it makes it even more beautiful.

You could again turn and despise it but don't. 

Come, everyone who is thirsty, come to the waters; and you without money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost! Seek the Lord while He may be found; call to Him while he is near. Let the wicked one abandon his way and the sinful one his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, so He may have compassion on him, and to our God, for He will freely forgive. Isaiah 55:1, 6-7