Tuesday, October 10, 2006

4 Days To Go and Counting...

We will be seeing some very good friends of our, who live in Orlando, FL, this coming Saturday (see picture insert). We haven't seen these friends for 5 years, Hunter was just 3, and JayCee spent her 1st birthday with them. So, this will be Brock and Tanner's first time to meet them all.

We're going to eat lunch with Pooh and friends the day we get there, Goofy, Mickey & the gang are having us over Wednesday (the 18th) for dinner, then Cinderella invited us to eat with her in her Castle on Friday (the 20th)...then I believe we'll be eating with Chip n' Dale one of these days.

We normally only visit our friends for a short week, but this time, we are going to stay with them for 10 days. We should be closer than ever when we leave.

The kids are so excited, and everyday, they tear off a day of our Countdown To Disney calendar we made. (Ok, Mommy's pretty excited too!) Nana & Papa are going with us, as well as Uncle Brandon...so we are going to have plenty of fun.

Keep us in your prayers...for a safe, sunshine full 10 days! I keep watching the weather - and thus far it looks promising, with only a couple days of (extended forecasted) rain. We may have to re-evaluate some of our days at which park we're going for, but I'm sure we'll have a blast regardless.

Love you all....

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Schools In...Summer's Out

This is our first child...er, dog...Valentine. She was born the end of Jan., 1996, and we got her right before we moved to Galesburg. Doesn't seem like it's been 10 1/2 yrs. Anyway, I don't know if you can tell or not, but she's sticking her tongue out. Actually, she was licking, and Shawn just captured it like this.

This is how I feel. I just want to stick my tongue out at everyone/thing, and say FOOEY.
Ok, let me whine for a minute - just to get it off my chest.

Not only did we lose one of the most precious persons in the world right before school started, but we changed curriculums and are trying to get into a routine there (and the curriculum is GREAT, but a lot more for mommy to do right now), the kids are in their fall sports (which means mommy is a true "soccer" mom - & football & dance & Latin & piano), and we have all been sick for the last week with summer/fall colds - the nasty kind, and sick daddy leaves EARLY in the a.m. for Vegas (for work) until Sunday night leaving sick mommy & 3 out of 4 sick kids. WAAAA (Sarah, did I spell that right?).

It's now 12:10 a.m. (Thur), and I'm wide awake, even though I just took 3 "knock-you-out" cold pills...so here I am. Done studying for tomorrows lessons...kids in bed & asleep...dogs all tuckered out...Shawn trying to get a few hours in before he gets up at 2:30 a.m., and even though there are a lot of words, I don't have a lot to say. Hmmm.

Ok...well, now that I've gotten my whining done...I'll try to go to bed.

Quick Edit: It's now 1:08 a.m. Just got back from the kids' rooms... Hunter came down with a bad earache (so make that 4 out of 4 kids sick). So I found his ear drops - gave them to him along with a little nyquil to help him sleep. I go in to make sure he's getting in bed ok, and JayCee is up in Hunter's bunk bed...crying, and Brock was walking around in circles in the middle of the room. So I have JayCee go back to bed, and get Hunter up in his bed, and get Brock settled back in the bottom bed. Then go make sure JayCee's ok. I asked her why she was in Hunter's bed - and she said (crying the whole time) "becasue Hunter told me to get in his bed at 3 o' clock". Now, I have no idea if she even knows what she said!!!! But...this is just another day in the...no make that NIGHT in the life at the Karns'.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Thank You

Pete & Lorraine Karns 2005

Shawn & I just wanted to say THANK YOU to all who sent cards, flowers, support and all your prayers during the death of Shawn's mother. We appreciate everyone so much!

We sure miss mom very much, but are rejoicing with her as she dances above us with her Savior and lover of her soul! It's a JOY to know she's at Peace and effortlessly breathing Heaven's fresh air.

God is good...and we've had reports that Dad Karns' neighbor's came over and asked Pete how there could be such a peace at the funeral - they never felt that before...so dad had the opportunity to witness, and they went to church with him yesterday! Even though God decided to take his humble servant, He's still working and using her memories to win souls!

Thanks again to all our friends.

Love, Shawn & Amber Karns

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Off to Cali we go

I haven't posted FOREVER...but I did want to ask everyone's prayers while Shawn & I are gone to California this week.

Shawn is taking a business trip to Irvine, and I'm taking a "resting" trip to Irvine with him. I plan on doing nothing but read, scrapbook, sit at the beach, read, etc.....

The kids are going to be....everywhere. Between Sarah, Anna and my parents, they will be well taken care of, and I'm sure they're looking forward to having a "refreshed" mommy when I return!

I'll be back Monday night (the 19th), and Shawn will stay the rest of that week and return Sat. night (the 24th). We'll spend my birthday and Father's day in California. So, we'll be celebrating Fathers Day on the 25th :).

Well, dear friends, be praying for us, and we'll be praying for you!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Our House - What should we do?

We are wanting (maybe I should say I am wanting) to take out the hedges on the front, right side of our house, and put in a small patio area. I just wanted to get some opinions of others. If we do this, I'm wanting to take out the big tree next to the drive (not the one in the forefront of the picture below), and the big hedge under the bay window. Maybe replace with nice patio bricks - instead of a concrete slab?

Does anyone have any suggestions?

Then, maybe next year we'll do something with the left side of the steps?

Monday, April 24, 2006

Happy Easter 2006

Easter Pictures of the Karns' Kids

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Five Little Monkeys....

The last time I glanced at the clock this morning was 3 am. No more TALL glasses of Coffee & esspresso for me late at night - I have enough trouble sleeping. I was finally asleep when Hunter decides to crawl in bed. Well - I'm barely aware of him anyway, so I let him stay.

Probably not 1/2 hour later - here comes Brock. So, I keep scooting closer to Shawn. I realize Brock came, but I'm too tired to do anything about it. So I let him stay.

Next thing you know, I wake up, in a scrunched up position. Valentine (our Dalmation) decided she wanted on the bed also - so she laid at my feet - all 75 lbs of her, then I notice Hunter and Brock were so close to me I'm surprised I could breath.

It's now 5:30 am. So I get up to use the restroom, and when I went back to my bed - there was no place for me! The boys decided to spread out, and Val was still at the foot of the bed, and I was too tired to argue or move anyone, I pulled up the bed spread, next to Valentine (who had been outside for 2 days straight and didn't smell the greatest) and went back to sleep at the foot of my OWN bed!

I'm sure Shawn had to be wondering what in the world was going on when he woke up - because as usual, he slept thru it all!

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Crazy Life

Is life crazy for anyone out there? I know, in the Karns household - there's always something NUTTY happening. Right now, just trying to get everyone healthy is a huge focus. I don't know about you, but we have had the worst year EVER for being sick! The kids seem to be passing it back and forth, and we're getting no where.

I feel like, even my prayer / worship/ reading the Word time has gone out the window (since we can now open windows)...and life is just...YZARC (crazy spelled backwards for those who can't get it).

Easter was today - Pastor gave a great sermon - about "proving" the resurrection. He did an awesome job! We ate at my parents house, visited with Shawn's parents and had a great day with family, and a man from our church who has no family here. Sarah got to drink coffee, and our kids got to watch TV (Lent being over)...what else could you ask for?

Well...I can think of several things. A deeper love for Christ. A stronger hunger to know Him more. Our church to have a BURNING desire to reach the lost. My unsaved loved ones to know HIM as their Savior. Galesburg to have the Spirit of darkness and confusion lifted from it.

Oh God - help us to NOT get comfortable. When have we TRULY felt uncomfortable? My kids have a habit of saying, "I'm starving!!". Shawn & I have really started to talk to them about REALLY starving children, and that we shouldn't mistake being hungry for a meal to being STARVED for food you haven't had for a few days.

When have we felt Unsafe? Recent situations with a good friend of ours has left our friends' feeling unsafe to stay at their home. However, God, being the Creator of all - will work this situation out for His good.

When have we felt Helpless? I like being in control. However, when my husbands company decided to sell his company to a competitor, we were, and ARE helpless. We have to wait and see what will happen with insurance/doctors and all kinds of other things we took for granted. But - God is showing us already that He is preparing us to lean on HIS provisions.

When have we really felt MESSED UP? For a good month and a half, God has been "messing" Shawn & I "up". It started with the Eagles' Wings conference, and it just keeps going from there. He is getting us ready for something truly awesome!

God is doing something in Galesburg! He is truly REFINING us, but we have to go thru the fire. It's sometimes painful, sometimes scarey. But God is still there - the Refiner.

Monday, April 10, 2006

What a DAY

When we first moved into our house - almost 10 years ago now, our side yard by the pool was beautifully landscaped - professionally. It was gorgeous, and we enjoyed the beautiful colors of the flowers - the plants were so green and pruned just right. I remember sitting out there just enjoying nature and thinking - WOW...I wonder how hard it is to keep up with all the weeds that may grow...

10 years later - here we are. Well, maybe not quite that bad, but there has been a lot of changes at the Karns'. We no longer have the beautiful landscape area. That came up and in planted grass so that the kids could have an area directly in the back yard to play. Out went the small fence around the pool, and in came the 6 foot fence with the safety latches and the strongest "cover" you can find. Out went the big open side yard and in came the privacy fence and play fort, trampeline, etc.

Isn't it amazing how many changes there are in a few short years. I really - really - could go on and on about what we have done/changed/improved/destroyed, etc. at this house. But - I know that one area I could improve is gardening. I started last year, and did a pretty good job at planting flowers around the pool fence, and kept them watered and weeded. Until about August. Then I was "burned out". Well - as I was out there pulling weeds today - which should have been done last Sept/Oct., I am once again determined to have beautiful flowers around my pool area. I've already called Shawn, then my dad asking if / how much$ / & when we could pour more cement to make my patio bigger. The kids have played outside since after breakfast (yes - everyone seems to be better - Tanner's still getting there). It's warm out - and a good long walk seems inevitable.

I'm so excited! I think Spring is really here!!!!

Friday, April 07, 2006

Eagles Wings Conference

Just a Reminder for everyone...the Eagles Wings Conf. is tomorrow in Bolingbrook (near Chicago). We will be leaving the church at 2:00pm, so be there early. If you don't want to eat "fast food" we will be taking lunchmeat, etc. we can eat while others are eating fast food.

I'm expecting GREAT things! I'm so excited to go!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

To Splurge Or Not To Splurge?

I went grocery shopping at 10pm last night. My quiet time (sad life, I know). But, if we were to have any breakfast in the morning, it had to be done. I'm walking through the aisles - taking my time (literally my only break for the day without any kids), and go down the best aisle in the store! The coffee aisle.

There is NOTHING in the world like good smelling coffee (sorry Sarah - Lent's almost over). My senses started taking over...drawing me to the coffee bean display. Should I? I've never ground my own beans before... It's kindof expensive. Hmmmm...

Well - I'd like to say that judgement got the best of me - but my selfish nature took hold. I picked up an empty bag, filled it with caramel toffee coffee beans, poured them into the grinder - and ground away! I was so happy - thinking the whole time, I do deserve this, right?

Well - as I sit here, drinking my Caramel Toffee, I'm thinking it's ok to splurge every once in awhile. Mmmm, is it ever good!!!


Friday, March 31, 2006

Karns Kids Blog

Ok, since everyone has the "bug"...Hunter & JayCee wanted their own blog. So, if you look at the bottom of my links, there's a link to {My Kids}. They would be thrilled to have a comment :)

Thursday, March 30, 2006

All is well...for now

Well - Shawn got home last night, and gave me the "scoop" about the new owners of their company. They have promised most everything will stay the same (as far as holidays, vaca time, etc) and are trying to find an insurance that is comparable to what they have now...let's keep that in prayer! And they are planning on keeping this part of the company here - not moving it (I think the headquarters is in California?).

So, as long as they keep their word - all is well. Hopefully the insurance thing will be ok, too. But like I said earlier. God is in control, anyway, so there's no reason to worry about it.

Thanks for all your prayers!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

My Morning Phone Call

Well - Shawn calls this morning and asks if I'm "sitting down"... That means there's really GOOD news or really BAD news. I'm nervous. What is it? I wonder if they actually gave him a raise with the new position he just took. That would be GREAT. We could use the extra money.

BAM...His company was just bought by someone else. What does this mean? Who knows. His job now is pretty laid back. He can wear jeans/shorts t-shirts, etc. He gets a lot of vacation time. A lot of holidays. Lots of perks (fun things they do for their employees), etc. It's been a pretty good place to work. Now - the future in unclear.

Isn't it funny...God is "messing us up" in all areas of our lives! I've been on a "Holy Ghost High" since we went to Atlanta to the Eagles' Wings conference - and now the kids are sick, and Shawn's job is ???????? But you know what? When normally I would be sick with worry over our "future"...I'm at peace. I know God is in control. There's nothing I can do about it anyway. I keep saying I'm trying to "clean house" (literally - my house) so that we can be ready to do His call at a moments notice (no, that doesn't mean we're planning on moving or anything). That could be just having fellowship at our home on a spur of the moment without worrying about all the toys/clothes/junk sitting in the middle of the floors.

I'm excited! God is doing something Great in our lives - in Galesburg - in this Country - in the world! I don't want to be passed by - I want to be a part! How about you?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

New Template

Ok - I changed our template. I'm not a GREEN type of person, either, but with the "germ bug" going around, I thought this was appropriate. What do you think?

Uh - Here We Go Again

Yep - the old germ bug is revisting the Karns house! Brock is coughing non-stop, and is losing his voice. Tanner just isn't up to par - starting to cough. And Hunter is coughing with a fever - still sleeping (it's after 9:00am here). So much for school today.

So be praying, and if you have to come here for any reason - don't forget what to wear....

Friday, March 24, 2006

James 4:1-12

My friend, Kim, is teaching the adult SS class this Sunday at her church. Her lesson is on James 4:1-12...

Does anyone have any thoughts for her? She's afraid of comeing off too strong, but her thoughts are.... "What's in Your Heart?"

James 4:1-12
Submit Yourselves to God
1What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? 2You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. 3When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

4You adulterous people, don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. 5Or do you think Scripture says without reason that the spirit he caused to live in us envies intensely?[a] 6But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
"God opposes the proud
but gives grace to the humble."[b]

7Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

11Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. 12There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Only Grace

I LOVE Matthew West's new song..."Only Grace"

There is no guilt here
There is no shame
No pointing fingers
There is no blame
What happened yesterday
Has disappeared
The dirt has washed away
And now it’s clear

There’s only grace
There’s only love
There’s only mercy
And believe me it’s enough
Your sins are gone
Without a trace
There’s nothing left now
There’s only grace

You’re starting over now
Under the sun
You’re stepping forward now
A new life has begun
Your new life has begun


And if you should fall again
Get back up, get back up
Reach out and take my hand
Get back up, Get back up
Get back up again

Monday, March 20, 2006

To be like a child

What a time we had yesterday during our Revival with Pastor Neil Smith! Both services were awesome! God's presence was felt when you walked in the building! Last night, we had a time of worship an hour before the service started. It was awesome! Thanks to Karen Stroops, we have some banners now! It blessed my heart to see my 8 yr old son, pick up the RED banner and begin to pray as he walked the sanctuary (he has to work on not pokeing anyone with the banner, since he walks & prays with his eyes closed).

We need to be like children. Free in our worship. Not worried about what others thinks. Let offenses roll off our backs. Able to look at the unseen with Awe and wonder and expectation.

I'm so in love with Jesus - I just want everyone else to be as excited as I am right now! I'm looking forward to our time of worship before service tonight! Come with expectancy!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006


Missey Gray

My heart is grieved. I was looking up information on St. Patrick's day for the kids to work on and study, going thru some homeschool blog sites, and discovered a 32 year old homeschool mother of (now) 5, Missey Gray, died during an emergency c-section on March 1, 2006.

Yesterday Missey went in to get her stress test that she's been getting every 2 weeks. The test showed that Missey was loosing amniotic fluid and that she had lost enough of it for it to be alarming. That's when they decided to go ahead and take the baby.

After they lifted the baby from her body, some of the amniotic fluid got into her blood stream and caused a blood clot, which is what caused her death. She never came out of surgery. Her mil (mother-in-law) said that this only Happens 1 in 200,000. (Dandelion Seeds blog)

No, I didn't know this woman at all, but from reading her blog (which she wrote in for the last time before they left for the drs. office - http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/HeartSchooling/ ), I can see that she was a woman who loved the Lord first, then her husband, then kids. She had three girls (age 11, 8, 5) a boy (almost 2), and then a newborn girl, named after her, Melissa Kate Gray. Missey blogged on Nov. 2, 2005 the following:

The academics are important, but the heart-set is even more so. That's why I like to say that we are "HeartSchooling" -- it puts my focus back where it ought to be and helps me keep my priorities straight.

Missey was a WHIZ at homeschooling! She makes me look like I do NOTHING! Not only was she homeschooling, but she was involved with blogs and online homeschool support groups - helping make other homeschool moms' lives easier.

My prayers go out to her husband, Tom, and their 5 children. I only wish I would have met her before. I do know I'll see her again someday!

Saturday, March 11, 2006

What in the WORLD is going on?

Obviously - it's not in the WORLD - but God is giving us a glimpse (mind you a very MINUSCULE glimpse) of what Heaven will be like! Why were we created? To worship Him! Yesterday and Last nights services were unbelievable! It was AWESOME. We sang a song yesterday and the words were, "In Awe of You we Worship". Pastor talked about how we don't use that word very often, but that is how we should look at God.

Dictionary.com says Awe is "A mixed emotion of reverence, respect, dread, and wonder inspired by authority, genius, great beauty, sublimity, or might". WOW - does that do a good job of describing our emotions about God or what?

Again, another song we sang said this, "Turn your ear to heaven and hear the noise inside...the sound of angel's AWE, the sound of angel's songs - and all this for a King - we could join and sing - All to Christ our King".

Another song we sang talks about "How Great is our God" - and "He wraps Himself in light, and darkness tries to hide- and trembles at His voice". That's how Awesome our God is.

A good friend of mine was happy for Pastor, Libby, Shawn & I, when we came back from the Eagles Wings conference last weekend - with our "new way of freedom in our worship" - but expressed that "it wasn't for her". Well - God showed up last night again, and told her "YES IT IS"...and because of her obedience, she was blessed with a Heavenly language - and a "new freedom in her worship".

God is taking us to places we've only dreamt of - more than that even! Are you ready to go? Are you going to hesitate and sit back & "wait & see" - or are you going to JOIN IN and be on the frontlines? Can you tell I'm excited? GOD IS SO GOOD. Alright - now is the time to, "Turn our gaze to heaven and raise a joyous noise.....Oh Praise Him"!!!! (David Crowder)

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Too much?

I was reading Neil Smiths blog he posted Sat. March 4, and my heart was troubled. He speaks of treating a visiting Preacher from Kenya to a day at Bush Gardens, and how in that one day - they spent as much, if not more, money than most people in Kenya earn in a year. This Kenyan preacher said, "I know why American pastors have such a difficult time building a church, there are too many options, distractions, serving God is not the priority!" It just goes to show our "American" mentality. Yes, I believe in going on vacation, and that takes money. My favorite place to take the kids is Disney, and everyone knows how much that costs!

But, why do we feel it so important to have "stuff". We are too comfortable! I don't think God is calling us to live in poverty - but I think He calls us to be good stewards of our money. I have been so convicted over this lately. I love to shop - not for me, but my kids. Do they need any more clothes? Absolutely NOT. Do they need anymore toys? No. My children do not know what LACKING means. They have never lacked for anything. Nor have I. And - please don't worry - I'm not going to start selling all my (our) posessions. But it does mean that I need to take a step back and look deeply at what we are teaching our kids. They are good kids! They love us, eachother, and God...but I want them to be GREAT adults in the Lord.

I know I'm rambling - but this is on my heart...

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Shaley Karns

Ok, ok...We couldn't wait - she was able to come home tonight! She's sooooo cute!
And, as you can tell, we decided on the name Shaley (pronounced
SHAY-LEE w/ a long A). The place we got her was on Shale Rd., so, there we are.

Shaley & Valentine, checking each other out. So far so good, except for Shaley trying to nip at Vallie's legs...Val just acts like she's scared of her.

Shaley & Brock. The kids WILL NOT leave the poor puppy alone! They want to pick her up and hold her costantly!

Shaley's 1st bath. She stunk bad - and still does. She'll have to have another bath tomorrow to try and get that Kennel smell off of her.

She's already found things to chew on! Ok, we've got several chew toys already. If anyone wants to give a "puppy shower" (ha)...buy more chew toys!

Shawn says Shaley looks like she's smiling here. Happy to be home at last!

Friday, February 17, 2006

A Change of Plans

Ok, we've had a change of plans...the puppy we were going to get - became sick last night - and we (well, really I) had a check about getting him. I really wanted a female dog (that's what I'm used to), and low and behold, this sweety came to us (by way of picture) almost the same time the other puppy was gettion "out of the picture".

She's only 7 weeks old, and we can't get her until Wednesday or after - but isn't she adorable? She looks like the Cottonelle commercial puppy (only a little smaller)!! Let's hope all goes well with her now... If this one doesn't work out - I think we are going to wait to get another dog. Maybe that's God's way of saying, "NOT NOW...GOOD GRIEF"!!!

Thursday, February 16, 2006

A new addition to the Karns'

Ok, call us crazy - buy you can't help but love this face! Right before Christmas, we "rescued" a dog (which the kids named Goldie), and we all fell in love with her. She was a 2yr old yellow lab, and a sweet heart - except to Valentine (our Dalmation), and our friend's leg when Goldie was going after Valentine.. So, needless to say, we sadly had to find another home for her.

Believe it or not, Shawn took it harder than anyone! Why? Hmm...there's the million dollar question. He loved that dog! She listened to him - which I think is the real reason.

So, this Saturday - we are going to Iowa to pick up this new addition. He's 4 mths old - which means mommy will be potty training not only Brock, but a puppy. But, that's ok. We saw this face and fell in love instantly. Hopefully the feeling will be mutual!

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Help - I'm still sick

Well...we have gone thru the sickness gamut, and thought we were about over, when yep...mommy is feeling bad again! I don't get this! I was reading Sarah's blog on patience...I can relate! I'm tired of feeling miserable and trying to take care of the house, school, meals, kids, etc. So if my kids stink around you...sorry, baths haven't been since Sat. (ugh).

Anyway, please pray that whatever keeps dragging me down will IMMEDIATELY disappear. I feel very "stiff", off balance, at times feverish, cold, along with the neverending sore throat!

Thanks for your prayers!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

4 Months and Counting

Ok, it's only been MONTHS since I've blogged! Too busy during the Christmas season, than off to Grandmother's house I went for a couple weeks, than back home for a couple weeks of sickness. Thank You, Lord, for it finally seeming to start passing.

Anyway...on my 'fridge is a picture of a BEAUTIFUL dress that I am going to be wearing for a wedding I am in this June. Ok, the wedding is of one of our "youth girls" who has grown up, and has asked me to be her matron of honor (to which I AM truly honored). But, as you can guess, all the other girls in this wedding are in their 20's....except me. So, I'm really fighting the "need to get in shape" NOW syndrome. The reason the picture of the dress is on my 'fridge' is because I wrote underneath it in BIG letters..."GET SKINNY"...and hopefully everytime I open the dorr of the 'fridge', I can be reminded...eat right.

Pray with me on my quest!!!!