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I really do have to say this trip was so much fun.  I was a little weary here and there, thinking "am I crazy?" a 6 month old and a two and a half year old on a 14 hour road trip, a week at a high school summer camp, and then another 14 hour drive home?! But the Lord was so kind and really allowed it to be such a joy. I think so much of it, was prayer and prep that helped make it as easy as it was. I wanted to go and be a blessing to Chad, not a burden who was needy or making him feel guilty for spending time helping or serving others. The Lord answered my prayers and gave me such a peace while I was there, that I was doing exactly what he wanted me to be doing, caring for my husband and boys first and not allowing me to feel guilty for not being a small group leader superstar!

In the recent years, I have felt so torn in my ministry to my family and my ministry to the church. Desiring to "Do it all!" I run ragged and have not given %100 to what scripture says are my FIRST priorities (Titus 2:4-5); my husband, my children and my home.  Serving the church is also commanded but MUST not come before the others.  So, all that to say it was so encouraging to know that even though I didn't lead a small group and missed most of the sessions, the Lord was glorified and pleased with me simply caring for my family, freeing up my husband, having a joyful heart and using the opportunities I did have, to encourage and pray for the staff and students.  It's been a long road for me to be at peace in this new season of my life, figuring out that I'm not superwoman and can't do it all, and do it well.  Quite humbling!

Other than my Bible, A book that has encouraged my soul and has shepherded me to think biblically and selflessly as a wife and mom has been Shopping for Time by Carolyn Mahaney.  And a great book I read while the boys slept at camp was The Gospel Primer by Milton Vincent.  So thankful for discipleship through books!

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This here is Melissa Norton, my dear friend who I was so blessed to get to spend the week with. She was such an encouragement to be around and is such an awesome example to me of a faithful and sacrificial, Christlike wife and mom. She and her husband Dave are superstars on high school staff.  Their family comes first but they are still sacrificial and serve the church so much!  They don't use their marriage and family as an excuse to not serve the church, they make serving the church such a huge part of their lives and have such great balance!

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It's the cozy cone!

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My hot, godly husband

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Sweet Kayla Joy and Fordy

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The petrified forestScreenshot 2015-07-07 11.06.42Screenshot 2015-07-07 11.06.49Screenshot 2015-07-07 11.07.03

Brandy's Restaurant , a yum spot the Nortons saw on the Food Network we went to for dinner in Flagstaff, AZ

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Hudson and his favorite person, Zack... who SO patiently played with him the whole time we were together...

Screenshot 2015-07-07 11.07.22 Thanks Zack for making it so fun for Hud! LeCrae showed up to camp and performed a surprise concert Wednesday night

Emma --Huds other pal...

Screenshot 2015-07-07 11.07.28 Ford relaxing in the wonderful house all the families were able to stay in!

Screenshot 2015-07-07 11.07.40 Hud enjoying a movie...a life saver several times!

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And to all you moms who have ever debated a road trip with little ones... Do it! Bring fun toys, good music, yummy food, and pray... It will be a blast and a great family memory!

Much love,

Cj

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