Friday, May 30, 2008

Do it.

So I recently heard a song called "Do It Lord" by Tommy Walker off of his latest album called I Have A Hope. Every time I hear the chorus, which is the phrase 'Do It Lord' over and over, I can't help but wonder if Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson co-wrote the song on the set of Starsky and Hutch. Despite my wandering imagination, this is still a great song on a great album by Tommy Walker. Sing your heart out Tommy. Do it.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Adventures in the Shire: Ole Augusta

Monday morning The Kirk Haven clan accompanied Pa & Ma Kirk (aka Don Paul & Jackie) onto the Ferryboat, Ole Augusta, where we crossed the Ohio River from Ripley, Ohio to Augusta, Kentucky.

We rode our bikes along the river in the postcard river town of Augusta (also the home of George, Nick, & Rosemary Clooney for all of our non-Ohio readers).
It was a gorgeous, serene morning. So much so that baby girl Kirk fell asleep in her bike seat on the back of Aron's Schwinn; her little head bobbled all about the last of the ride as she slept sitting upright.

Back in the MI

We're back from our mini-vacation. Aron headed off to work after arriving home at 10:30 last night, and I am avoiding the inevitable mound of laundry I will encounter when I unpack. So I thought I'd post a quick note to procrastinate a little.
We had such an amazing time with so many of you who mean so much to us! Time was too short to see everyone, but we'll be back again in July for an entire week, so hopefully we can connect then!
Aron & I will be posting some picts throughout the week to highlight our Adventures in the Shire, as we like to call our home in Brown County!
Stay tuned, friends, more to come!
With much love!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

See ya Tuesday!

Well friends, we're off to the homeland for the weekend: for some we'll see you later, for others, we'll see you very soon!
Can't wait to share some cherished moments with you when we return. Until then, here are a few thoughts to ponder this Memorial Day:

Although no sculptured marble should rise to their memory, nor engraved stone bear record of their deeds, yet will their remembrance be as lasting as the land they honored. ~Daniel Webster

For love of country they accepted death... ~James A. Garfield

All we have of freedom, all we use or know -This our fathers bought for us long and long ago.~Rudyard Kipling, The Old Issue, 1899

Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations, that we have forgotten, as a people, the cost of a free and undivided Republic. ~John A. Logan

Since the fall of man, we have been shackled by snares of our own devices. From that moment foward freedom has always come at great cost. Our Great Warrior King has freed us by laying down his life, and many of his children have followed suite - in the name of freedom.
May each of us ponder this & allow utter gratitude to change the way we live.
All our love
the kirks

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

princesses at heart

Isabelle & I attended a Royal birthday celebration for her majesty, Princess Brooke. All princesses and their queens were encouraged to wear their finest attire for this courtly ceremony. Some of the moms wore their wedding gowns, but this Queen's bridal attire is in Ohio. Princess Belle is at my hip in this picture in the lower right corner.
Taking after her mother, she's eating salad & loving it!
Leaving the ball.One last kiss before the clock strikes 6:00.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Mormon Mayhem

A few weeks ago I was with a group from church on a service project in our community doing some landscaping for a local half-way house ministry. Two Mormons were riding by on their bicycles and stopped and asked if they could help. We said sure and as I worked alongside them I struck up a conversation.

Now, we have a small group from church that meets every other Sunday night and we're studying different religions. They asked me to lead a session on Mormonism, and I agreed. I ended up asking these two Mormons if they would come and tell our group about their faith. So they came last night and shared with our group.

I spent hours preparing because I wanted to confront these gentlemen with some of the un-Biblical and downright dangerous beliefs that their church professes. Beliefs like Jesus' blood doesn't cover all sins; God was once a man who worked out his own salvation; all churches other than the Mormon church are an abomination to God and only by belonging to the Mormon church can you be saved; the Fall (Garden of Eden) and sin itself were intended by God and are actually good because they allow us to experience suffering through which we can become gods. Hmmm, eating the apple was a good thing because we can become like God. Now that sounds an awful lot like Satan's lie in Genesis 3:4-5.

Mormonism bothers me more than any other religion/cult, because they profess belief in Jesus Christ and the one true God, but their teachings about Jesus/God are completely un-Biblical. Hence, one must conclude this is a false Jesus they proclaim. The kind of false-Jesus teaching Paul rebukes the Corinthian church for putting up with in 2 Corinthians 11 and warns the Galatian church about in Galatians 1.

So, they presented their basic beliefs for about a half hour and our group spent the next two hours debating with them. I was so proud of how our group handled themselves. Almost every single person in the group challenged these two young gentlemen's beliefs with complete gentleness and love. It was an awesome experience and really helped sharpen me to confront un-Biblical teaching in the future. I hope we planted some seeds of God's holy truth in these gentlemen. They definitely planted seeds in me. Seeds of desperation and urgency for all people to know God's holy truth, his one and only true Word, the Bible, and the complete utter freedom of abiding in Jesus Christ.

Dear God, burn away the dross from the Mormon Church and let them discover your true Son. Let them experience the freedom of Christ and forsake their falsity. Your grace is enough for us.


Sunday, May 18, 2008

Bella (the movie, not our daughter)

So we watched the movie "Bella" last night. It's about a woman who is pregnant out of wedlock an trying to decide whether to abort the baby or not. It is very well done and is quite the tearjeaker. Don't watch it if you don't feel like crying. This is Aron writing by the way. You know, the man of the house (unusually muscular, eats nails for breakfast). Like I said, it's a tearjerker. I guess it didn't help that a little girl dies in the movie and she happens to look like my daughter and the movie's title is very much like my daughter's name. Yeah, probably all that and some dust got in my eyes. Yeah, that was it.

Anyway, it's a great movie. I think the main male character is a great portrayal of how to love someone who is in desperate circumstances. I know it definitely challenged me to love broken people with God's unconditional love. And we're all broken in some way. I guess that's the beauty of this movie, the male character loves unconditionally even while in the midst of his own brokenness. God doesn't call us to be perfect before we love others with His love. In fact, quite the oppostie. We love others best in the midst of our brokenness and weakness. Watch the movie and you'll know what I'm talking about. Check it out.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

The Blog Hog

Aron says I am a blog hog - that is, I post too quickly after he does, and he fears his posts will not get read. I do stay at home all day, so I find the time to post more than he does. However, this week, I thought I'd be respectful of his request & simply wait to post until he did & then give his sufficient time to be absorbed by all of you in the blogosphere.
As you can see, it's Saturday, & still no post. So I've been patiently waiting all week to tell you about Isabelle's reconciliation with the monkey species...but still no post by my man. (To his credit, he has had a meeting every night this week after work. And then yesterday on his day off, his side of the closet pulled out of the drywall, so he spent the evening at Lowes & then in the closet playing handyman.)
So the blog hog emerges - impatient & ready to devour....or something like that!

Isabelle & Mommy's Day at the Zoo (this happened Tuesday...see how patient I've been?!)
We had such a blast at the Detroit zoo!
Belle LOVED the penguins, turtles, manatees, & so much more.

She even made restitution with this gorilla: We were standing at a big glass window looking out at these once despised creatures, and this gorilla walked up to the glass, pressed his face right against it where Isabelle's face was, and for about 15 seconds, they stared at each other.
Thank you, Mary Christian, for inviting us to spend the day with you & your kids at the zoo!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


I am vindicated. My 2nd urine drug screen came back clean, despite ingestion of poppy-seeds on Sunday. I won't be able to orient until May 29th, though! Oh well, more time with my baby!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


This picture reminds me of a song Aron just wrote entitled, "Shimmering". It's pretty amazing & I can't wait for you all to hear it sometime! (As soon as our college debt is paid, Aron has in mind to purchase some additional recording equipment so he can get all of these songs down.)

lousy t-shirt, quality book

I just finished a book called, "I Became a Christian and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt... replacing souvenir religion with authentic spiritual passion." I was skeptical at first because I'm more of a fan of the "heavy" Christian reading (i.e. Tozer; C.S. Lewis; Wesley; etc.). Given the title, I was expecting, "I read this book and all I got was, well, not even a lousy t-shirt."
This book was amazing, though. It expresses truly profound truth in extremely relevant and downright entertaining fashion. I highly recommend it. If you've been looking for something to chew on spiritually, but you can't get into the "heavy" stuff, read this book. Even if you love the "heavy" stuff, read this book. I don't care who you are, read this book. It made me feel like a butterfly in the sky. I can fly twice as high. Take a look, it's in this book. But, hey, you don't have to take my word for it (okay, that's from Reading Rainbow).

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Giant Plastic Baboon in the Corner

Fear - probably my biggest sin struggle, a huge waste of my energy, and a definite message of distrust sent by me to God - ever so subliminally & under the radar.
Ever learning from the baby, God taught me a little object lesson this weekend.

We're at The Rainforest Cafe with my family visiting from Ohio; this place is quite a sight to behold, especially for a child! Tropical fish in huge aquariums all over the place, real rain falling, vibrant colors, life-sized moving animals galore, steam throughout the place - incredible! Belle should be having the time of her young life! And she first.
She was so pumped, screaming, "Fsh, Fsh (she leaves out the "i" for some reason, seems more difficult to enunciate to me..whatever). Smiles abounded from ear to ear. Then, we proceeded to (dun, dun, dun) "Gorilla Wall".
With the clap of thunder & flash of lightening, the simulated storm began. The music intensified & the larger-than-life Baboons began beating their beastly-chests. Isabelle was terrified; she started screaming & shaking, all the while burying her face in my chest & clinging to me for dear life.
The storm only lasted about a minute or so, but the waiter informed us they would repeat every 1/2 hr. The damage was done. Fear had set in, and there was no reasoning with this child. She spent the next hour and a half clinging to me or Aron, face buried, fingers clenching, unable to concentrate on anything else but the big ugly gorilla directly behind her.

There was NO WAY Aron or I would allow some stupid plastic baboon to harm our precious child - we would have went ape on it (pardon the pun)! Belle's fear was rational, but unnecessary - cause her daddy was in complete control. Not only did she miss out on the amazing people & experiences we were trying to give her, her joy was completely stolen.

Every few minutes, she would peer behind Aron or me to see if King Kong was still there, and he was, so back she darted to her position of defense. She was so preoccupied with her fear, she could not turn from its ugly, powerless face to see the beauty around her. I must confess that she gets this honestly. Sounds a whole lot like her mother! Whether its fear of cancerous moles, fear of death, fear of China, fear of gas prices, fear of demons, fear of failing a 2nd urine drug screen & being falsely labeled a heroine/codeine/morphine addict from poppy seed ingestion....I mean...random things one could/might be afraid of, just to name a few.

So, to state the obvious inference: Your daddy is bigger than any Planet of the Ape fear you may be experiencing - He has overcome them all. Let's not be so focused on its big, ugly face that we miss out on all the LIFE God is wanting us to experience now!


ps...aron is critiquing my post & has informed me the monkey species was actually a silver-back bad.

You just cannot make this up...

I, Erica Kirk, failed my pre-employment urine drug screen. Yes, you read right...Erica, the drugy! I go in today to start my job & they tell me my urine sample was too dilute, which creates suspision that I have #1 provided a fraudulent sample or #2 attempted to hide my drug abuse problem by drinking so much water, nothing will show up on the screen.

Let's try option #3,! I am a fairly healthy girl. I work out, I subsequently rehydrate my body, and my kidney's are happy organs because I drink lots of water!

So I ask the very rude nurse who is treating me like a criminal if I can just redo the test on the spot. She asked, "Did you drink a lot of water this morning?" I did. She tells me if it comes back too dilute again, they will not hire me!

So now, I have to drive 45 minutes to the Occ Health facility AGAIN tommorrow. But I'm freaking out...why, you ask, if I have nothing to hide? Well, yesterday at church, I went out to get coffee before service, as I usually do. On the coffee & refreshment table I see a delicious lemon-poppy seed muffin staring back at me. I hesitate before picking it up thinking, "What if I would have to redo my drug test; I haven't got the results back yet. Nahhh...what could possibly go wrong? I'm clean".

So I enjoy the muffin. Not only this, but I also had a salad tossed with poppy seed dressing yesterday! So, if this comes through on my drug screen tommorrow, I will truely look like a proven drugy nurse!

There's more...
Because of this one issue of overhydration, I am no longer able to complete the orientation class tommorrow. They said they could not reschedule me until June!

You just cannot make this up!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

He Dropped the Ball

So the guy I hit with my tee shot while golfing last weekend dropped the ball. I'd like to think this means he forgives me. I was golfing with my friend Jason when I hit the man and Jason works at the course we were playing on. He went to hit a bucket of balls the other day and there he was, smug grin and all: Sponge Bob. He gave me the ball this morning at church. Who knows, maybe the guy stumbled upon my blog (SEE 'Just Drop the Ball') and decided to let the bitterness subside. He dropped the ball. Now if only I had my eagle putt back.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Say a prayer, please

For those of you non-family readers, this is The Bramlett family - Amber is Aron's first cousin. Her husband, Aric (who currently serves in the Military & recently returned from active duty overseas) was diagonsed with thyroid cancer in April. He had surgery today to remove both lobes of his thyroid. Soon he will be undergoing radioactive idodine treatment, during which time he must be seperated from his family as Amber is expecting their 3rd child.
So, we ask you to join with us in praying for our family! Thank you so much!
ps...the two cutie pies are Sage & Noah

Shout out!

For those of you who don't know, I'm preparing to go back to work next week - reluctantly. Aron & I have been listening to Dave Ramsey (author of The Total Money Makeover) on the radio & he has inspired us to take on a huge feat: paying of our student loans - quickly & with intensity.

That being the case, I'm going to be working 3 twelve hr shifts a week until they are vanquished! We've got a goal to do this in less than a year, so we can get on with debt free living! As exciting as this is, its extremely difficult for me to leave my baby. (look at that face...)

So here's where the shout out comes in: two women got together & decided they would watch our daughter & do it out of the goodness of their heart - then came to us with the offer. We didn't even have to ask! What an answer to prayer! God knows it kills me to leave her, but he's provided his very capable & loving daughters to help us out in this season!

Thank you BeckyJo!
Thank you Bernadette!
Also, 2 other women volunteered to be back up's for us:
Thank you Mary!
Thank you Barby!

This means more to us than you'll ever know! Thank you so much!
Oh, & one last shout out:

Thank you, God, for meeting our every need, and thank you for your beautiful daughters who have shown us your love in this way!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

6 words

Our sweet friend, BeckyJo, has tagged Aron and me for a meme (I must confess, I don't know the meaning of this word - that's okay, I'll still play.)
Here are the rules:
1. Write your own Six-Word Memoir.
2. Post it on your blog and include a visual illustration if you want.
3. Link to the person that tagged you in your post
4. Tag at least five more blogs with links.
5. Leave a comment on the tagged blogs with an invitation to play.
Here we go...

Aron Paul Kirk
Becoming His Word, Living His Love
God's inspired Word, the Bible, is His very character revealed. He gave us the Word with the great hope that we might become like Him ("be holy, for I am holy"). We, of course, have fallen, but Christ became that Word incarnate(SEE John 1). Through the cross, we have the opportunity to become "the righteousness of God" and we find that in Christ "the fullness of the deity is in bodily form." I am passionately pursing Jesus' challenge in Matthew16:24-25 to deny myself, take up my cross, and follow Him on the journey of becoming like Him. As I faithfully follow, I find myself exemplifying His incredible, selfless, humble, world changing love. This is the essence: becoming His Word, living His Love.

Erica Jean Kirk
By His grace, living life abundantly.
Not that I deserve this love, this life, this breath I am enjoying at this moment...but because He pursued me, because He loves me, because He sees beauty & wholeness admist the brokeness I create.
Not that all in my life is perfect or ideal, but that because of His grace, I can live a full, restored life no matter what the circumstance. Walking with the One who created me, I experience life as it was intended to be lived - by Him & through Him - all things restored.

Okay - now we tag you! If you have a blog...go ahead tell the world of your memoir. If not or you don't feel comfortable posting on your own blog, leave a comment on this post with your memoir - if you feel so inspired. We'd love to see this piece of your heart! What an amazing way to see all that God is doing in the hearts of His children!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Cinco de Mayo!

So yesterday was Cinco de Mayo (May 5th in Espanol). It's Mexico's version of the Fourth of July/Independence day. Nine years ago yesterday I asked Erica to be my girlfriend and she said yes!

So, we had to celebrate: we got a babysitter for Belle, ate at Don Pablo's, and saw the new superhero flick Iron Man. I'm starting to like this 'date night' thing. We're going to do it at least once a month.

Here's what we don't celebrate: nine years ago this past March I asked Erica to be my girlfriend and she politely turned me down. But, hey, if she'd said yes then, we wouldn't have a cool anniversary like Cinco de Mayo! Hooray for Mexico! (I don't know what that means)

Monday, May 5, 2008

Milestone Moments

Pardon the proud the parent in me for one post...

Isabelle went pee-pee in her pottie today for the first time, & I am so proud of my big girl!
She accomplished this task with the help of Pooh, Piglet, Tigger, & Eyore while reading a book!
Okay, it out!

All of my love,


Saturday, May 3, 2008

Just Drop the Ball

So I went golfing today with a few friends from church and I ended up hitting a guy with one of my shots. I have to say, nothing makes you feel like a horse's pa-toot like hitting someone accidentally with a golf shot.

We were on the fourth hole, a severe dog-leg to the right. I've never played the course, but my friend tells me if I hit it over the trees to the right I can make it on the green. I have no idea anyone is in front of us, so I hit it over the trees and it was probably the best shot I hit all day.

As we came up over the hill I see the guys on the green and I'm thinking, "oh no, I hope I didn't..." About that time a large man (I'd say about 6'4'', 275, bald, glaring, angry, etc.) came marching towards us.

"Who's hitting a green ball?!?!" he shouted as he marched towards us, shaking his fist with my ball clenched tightly in it. Now, I was playing a Sponge Bob Square Pants ball that I'd gotten last Christmas, which was actually yellow, but I didn't have the audacity to correct him.

"I am," I said weakly as I raised my hand like a fourth grader admitting he had just tried to put a tack on the teacher's chair. Well, maybe more like a fourth grader who did put a tack on the teacher's chair and the teacher sat on the tack and then got REALLY angry.

I'll spare you the details, but he commenced to curse me up and down and degrade my knowledge of the courtesies of golf (yelling "fore," seeing if anyone's in front of you, etc.) using quite colorful language by stringing together variations of four letter words I've never heard before.

I apologized meekly. He mumbled more curses and stomped away, clenching my Sponge Bob ball. Now, I had to have driven the green (on a par 4, no less!) to hit the guy and would've had a chance at an eagle putt, but, again, I didn't have the audacity to ask the man for my ball back.

What stuck with me from this experience, other than his colorful display, was that this guy clenched my ball and stomped away, doomed to hate the memory of me for the rest of his days. Poor Sponge Bob represented the bitterness he harbored toward me, and he resolved to hold on to that bitterness.

I struggled to find significance in all of this and so I'll take this moment to defend the cause of the horses' pa-toots out there: If someone did something or said something to hurt you, forgive them. Don't harbor malice in your soul.

I'm not asking you to deny that it hurt (even a Sponge Bob Square Pants ball hurts when it is traveling at over 100 mph). I'm not even asking you to deny that you were justified in your bitterness (I should've yelled fore, checked to see if anyone was in front of us, etc). Here's what it comes down to: whoever has hurt you feels like a horse's pa-toot-- but they'll get over it. You'll only hurt yourself in the long run if you don't forgive them.

Besides, you don't want to have to carry around a neon yellow Sponge Bob Square Pants golf ball of bitterness for the rest of your life, do you (that smug little grin of his, mocking you)? Just drop the ball. Forgive them. Give them a chance at an eagle putt. Just drop the ball.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Let's be real...

This has been a difficult week emotionally - there was a tough confrontation, followed by self-evaluation & reflection, a little homesickness, & overall feeling of an inability to finish anything! The house is a wreck - has been all week. Husband is beginning to grow weary of the mess. Everyday is filled with attempts to "get control of the chaos" - only to succomb to it by 9:30. Baked a cake tonight to take to different neighbors in an attempt to build relationships - both 9 inch cakes crumbled when taking them out of the pan.

At times like these, I feel like such a loser - "God must be so frustrated with me as I live in such defeat," my head perpetually tells my heart. But tonight a familiar voice spoke a much different message in response:

A clumsy Little Love clip-clops into the kitchen. "That's funny," I think without looking, wondering what it could be, "Belle's barefoot & none of her shoes have heels..." I look down to see Belle in my shoes (high heels, on the wrong feet mind you) attempting to walk around the house. So here's the message spoken to my heart at that moment: Sure you've got big shoes to fill. Yes you may be a little unsteady & less than proficient; you may trip and fall...but you know what, I am so proud you're trying so hard to be like me. I LOVE that you are trying - even if you feel foolish & don't see the fruit of your efforts. I love you more than you can understand.