Friday, December 13, 2013

shame on me

Well mercy. As i sit here and just flipped back through all the old posts with Chip, i realize just how far we have come in 5 years and what a difference 5 years makes! We have been through exciting times and scary times and our God is faithful and has been with us through them all! As we approach Christmas, I am reminded of the birth of a baby... a simple baby... that saved the world! That is powerful! We weren't saved by a strong army, a powerful ruler, or even ourselves, but a pure innocent, PERFECT baby! Revel in the wonder of the Season that has a reason - Jesus!!!!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

wow..... are you smarter than a Kindergartner!?!?

I continue to be amazed by Chip in school. Kids this age are totally into learning. If it is a game, interesting in the least bit, or makes them feel "Big", they are usually into it. This is what i have found, at least, with Chip! We continue to forge on in the world of homeschooling him and i absolutely wouldn't trade it for the world right now! He is reading on a level that I never in my wildest dreams would have envisioned for him at this age, and wants nothing to do but learn more, read better, and read bigger books - so that is what we do! We are also doing a study this semester on birds. He has learned most of the basic 'facts' about birds and now has had the opportunity to pick out one bird for the rest of the semester to just fill his little brain about. He has chosen Penguins - i know, right!?!? What a great bird to learn about! He has learned his continents and is in the process of trying to wrap his little 5-year old brain around the fact that we live on this big glob of round-ish stuff called Earth, that has all these pieces of land on it that he knows the names of, but that is such a big concept, we continue to work on that and he is totally mesmerized by it all! He is doing amazing at math, loving and breezing right through that and he loves nothing more than his literature/history stories he is hearing. You know you have a boy right where you want him when he is learning about Alexander the Great and loving it at 5 years old.

As you can imagine, homeschool takes up so much of my time, but I have been so blessed to be able to stay busy with my design work, as well. The holidays are fast approaching, no matter how much we try to drag it out and deny it, but the orders are coming in and I am behind but will be catching up on those this week. Also, the Saturday night service at our church has been an amazing success at reaching others who might not be able to attend otherwise, and it is requiring all hands be on deck at all times for it. We just wrapped up soccer season for Chip, I am traveling to NYC this weekend to go cheer on a Dystance4Dystonia team in the NY Marathon, and lots of other things are happening, too, but all in all we are doing well. We are still purely in love with PA life and just can't imagine ourselves anywhere else in the world right now. Pictures from our latest fun things with homeschool will have to come later as i have a load of laundry that is calling my name, dishes that need to be washed and work that needs to be done. Be blessed and carry on doing the work that the Lord has called you to do, wherever you may be!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Homeschool, pirate day, and more

So I have finally realized that I don't wear a cape and I won't get it all done in one day. What else I have realized, though, is that even if it doesn't all get done, it is OK!!!! :)

That being said, my blog just hasn't gotten done. Since I have been back in Pennsylvania, we have had to learn a new "normal" around here. Not only has my absence created a reason to readjust, but the church has added a new, AMAZING, Saturday night service that Tony leads worship at, soccer has begun, home school has begun, and business for me has picked back up. WHEW - so this seemingly leaves very little time for the 'little' things such as blogging.

But today is the day that I will get it done and share with you some of the incredible things we have done in home school. We have already learned Hard C, Soft C, how to skip count by 2s, 5s, and 10s, learned the four coins (penny, dime, nickel, and quarter) and their value, and have studied Adam and Eve, Noah and the Flood, and are now working on Abraham and Isaac. We have listened to some incredible old english stories from "50 Famous Stories" in literature and are learning about birds this term in science and the fact that the world is round and our Left, Right, Front, Back and perspective in Geography this term.

Believe it or not, we also have a LOT of fun! We use legos to learn math skills, handwriting for remembering and retaining language and handwriting skills, dry erase markers and paper for the excitement of being 'big enough' to use a marker, but we can quickly 'fix' any mistakes and correct them, as well as lots of exploring.

I also take time each week to do something fun and 'un-school'. Last week on Thursday was National Talk like a Pirate day and we went all out! We made an eye patch, pirates hat, painted a 'ship' and dressed up. Chip got to go on a treasure hunt and ended up watching The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything (veggie tales) movie, after school. What fun and what joy to watch his imagination go wild and love school!

"What in the world have you done OUTSIDE of school?" you might be wondering!!! Well, that plate has been full as well! We have done lots of canning vegetables, played golf, Chip has learned how to ride his bike without training wheels, we have had play days with daddy, Soccer has begun, and nothing is complete without an ER visit... allergic rxn to his DTAP shot. All in all, we have had a great month! Lots of other fun things are to come in the future, and we are going to take them one day at a time!

I hope that you enjoyed the pictures of our home school and outside of home school experiences
so far and that you, too, will find something unconventional and just plain FUN to do each week! It is totally worth it!!!

Saturday, August 31, 2013

it's been two months!

Wow - I was doing so great at blogging and then things in Alabama got busy and I just didn't sit down to do it. Since Chip's Birthday, so much has happened. He and Tony came back to PA on July 6, Dad had multiple doctors appointments with great results and conversations being had with doctors about his Dystonia, I made a trip to Chicago to speak at a conference for the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation as well as to grow and learn more, and I have returned back to PA, myself, and couldn't be happier to be back home.

People continually are saying to me, "Gosh, so how was it?" and really the only way i know to describe it was that it was a Horribly Amazing experience that I wouldn't trade for anything. Yes, it was awful to be away from home and my family for so long, I missed all the fun summer events with our new friends, and to be frank, i was gone for FOUR MONTHS - DUH, it was tough! But on the flip side, what an experience...

I was able to experience strength and love that I have never seen poured out. I have seen people treated the way they should never be treated and have, in turn, learned how to treat people, and I had to rely on a faith that I did not even know existed within my soul and Christian Walk. I have walked away from this experience with a care and concern for caregivers that you can only have if you have walked in those shoes, with a respect and regard for military and hard-working families that are away from their families for extended length of times, and I learned about strength and willpower to do the impossible against all odds that will stick with me forever.

In situations such as these, returning home and learning to 'be a family' again, learning to function among groups of people, readjusting to the fact that you don't always have to be "on" even at night, and so many other little nuances that you don't even realize you have adjusted to is tough to figure out and do. This is one of those instances and situations that are completely unable to be explained, and tough to do. Time, now, is going to be on my side to get re-settled in and to figure things out again, but the Lord is faithful.

I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Lord had me go to Alabama for the summer. It was a trip that I would have never done on my own had i known all it would have entailed, but isn't that how it is with the Lord? He only equips us to say 'yes' to go upfront because if we saw the whole pictures, we wouldn't do it...... in any and every thing.

So through all of this, i have learned to be a miracle to someone each day. And remember, Miracles come in packages that are as small as a smile or kind word. Be a miracle, because you, in fact, are a miracle from God! Share that with others with your actions!!

Monday, July 8, 2013

summer, birthday and fun!

at the Putt Putt place
he realized that he was going to have
the Imaginext castle he wanted when
he got back to Pennsylvania!
well the last few weeks here have been uneventful until the last week or so. In the past week, Tony flew down and we spent a few days at the beach, Fred turned 5 (FIVE!!! Can you believe it!?!?), the boys have gone back to Pennsylvania, and we are getting ready to start a new round of treatment for day in a couple of weeks.

Tony flew down for the week of the 4th and we spent a few days of this time at the beach with his family. We do this every year and it was spent with the cousins playing, the adults chatting, and the rain POURING! We were able to get a beautiful cousin picture as we try to do each year and Chip had the best time at the beach! He hung with it for the entire two days that it was pretty and had a blast! That Wednesday that we were down there, we had a birthday party for he and Doug with cake and gifts! Thursday we left and came back to Headland where we had another 'party' on Friday for him that had my and Tony's gift and mom and dads gift. Saturday the guys got up and drove to Atlanta (not without Chip vomiting in the rental car and spiking a 104 fever!) to fly to New Jersey to drive home and got home without incident. All Saturday night, poor Chip Sharp ran high fever and was sick and then by Sunday early morning it went away - TOTAL WARFARE, FOLKS!!! Well, they are home, and Chip has played with and touched each one of his toys probably 10 times and he is so excited to be home.
All the Sharp cousins with GaGa and PawPaw

love this boy!
my sweet boys
We found out last week that dad's case had NOT in fact been reviewed by the board in Birmingham and that it wouldn't be reviewed in July either, but it would be in August which took the wind out of our sails a little. We kept faith, though, and knew/know that the Lord is in total control of all of this. After many an un-returned phone call to the doctor's office asking for answers, we finally received a call directly from dad's neurologist. He couldn't and really didn't explain the hole in all that had happened but did tell dad that after further thought and speaking with a few other doctors, he really felt like dad should start the process of a Baclofen pump. This is the process that my brother and i were most in favor of in the beginning but after lots of prayer, thought, and consideration, dad opted against - which was fine. But the doctor seemed to think that the 'kind' of Dystonia my dad has would benefit from the pump. Well, we are willing to try anything right now and so on the 18th, we have a re-evaluation with the physicians about  the pump and tentatively on the 23rd, we will have a trial run of the pump in Birmingham. We are all very excited over the prospect of this as well as the fact that we are actually DOING something now, instead of just sitting around and waiting.

who is Mr. Incredible without his
bicycle and his helmet!?!?
The Lord is still in control over this and my dad has adopted a new scripture and claim lately, after a friend sent a beautiful card with the verse on the front of it.
Psalm 121:1-2 says, "I lift my eyes up to the hills - where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, maker of heaven and earth."
Papa with a 5-year old boy!

We truly believe that the Lord is in ultimate control over all of this and we are just waiting and watching for His timing. We have found ourselves to be experiencing the Lord in a way we never thought we would and have been beyond blessed at His provision and grace! He is a God that is bigger than us, bigger than Dystonia and bigger than this world! Praise the Lord that we serve this big God!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

a new found respect...

Recently, I have found myself a long way from home and yet so close to those people and things that I find dear! In this time of learning, healing, praying, hoping, and caring, it has also been a time for me to reflect on a lot of things! Recently, the one thing that has stood out to me the most, is the number of people that have opinions. Now, don't get me wrong, different opinions and different viewpoints are absolutely what makes the world go around. These things are also how we learn, grow, and experience new things every day and break out of ourselves, if we take the time to be open to hear them. NOW, all of that said, we don't have to agree with, follow through with or even understand the opinion, but an immense amount of respect is gained and given by just listening... and then you can share!

This is where an entire new found respect of mine has evolved... by hearing these opinions. I have discovered a new found respect for those things that I just don't understand. There have been a plethora of people that voice the fact that they don't understand how I could make the choice to come to Alabama for an unidentified period of time, how the don't understand the inner workings of Dystonia and how it takes over ones body, how they don't understand how Tony would 'let me' come to Alabama, and I could go on and on, but I think you get the point.

I have heard all of these opinions with grace and appreciation for their honesty and have then been able to take a moment to share one of the many opportunities I have had to experience God in a way I never thought I would in this situation. But in this, I have realized and gained this new found respect for things that I don't understand. There are situations in others' lives that I think out in my head, make an opinion, and move on... but I really don't understand. There are people that make choices that I criticize and rebuke within myself... but I really don't understand. And there are things that happen and situations that arise in others' lives that I analyze and form a judgement about... but I really don't understand. I, now, have found myself in the situation and the predicament that others' are looking at me from the perspective of not understanding... and that is okay!

I am now diligently working at my heart when it comes to situations that are not my own. Instead of those situations becoming opportunities to have an opinion that is unwelcome, a critical heart, and a judgmental spirit, I will take the opportunity to learn, to be open to what the Lord is doing in someone else's life, and to pray for them in a way, that I would have never been able to pray for them before. I will pray from the perspective of not understanding.... and that is ok!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

a positive perspective and a prayer lifted up

So I have found it incredibly difficult to blog lately. Not because I don't have time or any of those reasons, but you might call it blogger's block. I think, though, the main reason I have had difficulty blogging is because I have had a difficult time finding a perspective that I wanted to share and wanted to hopefully go viral. I have, though, over the last 2 or 3 days found a perspective that is worth sharing, worth blogging about, and I hope, you find worth sharing, too!

I have really had the opportunity to experience the grace and peace of the Lord that I have never experienced before. I have seen my dad in more pain than anyone I have known, and my dad has been able to handle it and 'bear through' with a peace that is just unable to describe. Through his strength, I have found a peace and strength that even I didn't know I had.

Also, this week, Tony gave me a Word-picture that I wanted to share with you all. We were talking about the conference that Tony had attended and he shared with me that in the middle of worship, the emcee of the event began talking about prayer. Tony started telling me that there are truly some people, that for multiple reasons, find themselves unable to pray for themselves. In Mark 2, the story is told about a man who was paralyzed and how he and his friends wanted to see Jesus badly, because they knew that Jesus would be able to heal him. But the crowd was so vast that they couldn't even get close enough to catch a glimpse of Jesus. So what did these friends do? They didn't say, "Well, we tried.... sorry." But instead they went above and beyond the call of friendship, hoisted their paralyzed friend that was laying on a mat onto the roof, DUG THROUGH THE ROOF (remember, this was a long time ago and the roof was dirt, mud, straw, etc) and then lowered their friend right in front of Jesus, himself!

Now, these friends did the unthinkable. They took their friend, went through the extremes to access the healer of all men, and "when Jesus saw their (this man's friends') faith he said, 'Son, your sins are forgiven'". Now, the teachers of the law were thinking negative and nasty thoughts, and then Jesus said, "Get up and walk!" This man was healed because of the faith of his friends!!!

There are times and people in our lives, that don't have the ability, for whatever reason, to place themselves at the feet of Jesus. There are people that can only utter and groan, and can only just lay where they are. And then there are those of us, who are able, beyond reason, to lift these people up - physically AND prayerfully - to the Healer of all Men! We are called to pray for those who can't pray for themselves and to do things for t

Who have you been given strength, physical and spiritual, for right now that you are to be lifting up? I am utterly amazed at the strength and opportunity that God has given me to experience his exceedingly abundant grace and peace in such a dark situation. But I am also incredibly honored and feel a responsibility to not only do what I need to do, but to pray as I am called to pray for my dad and mom in a way that they just can't right now!

We all can think of one person that we can pray for that 'just can't' for themselves right now! Stop now, lift them up, pray for them, and TELL THEM you are praying for them! What a glimmer of light in a dark place you will be for them!
And, because of OUR FAITH, sometimes the Lord heals these people.

Much love to you all!
<>< Becca

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Our God is Greater!

So we have been in Alabama for a week and what progress I have seen! What a difference a week makes! We have gotten a hospital bed in and we are now DILIGENTLY working to get him OUT of this hospital bed as soon as possible! Physical Therapy came in yesterday and did a LOT of work. They did exercises, stretches and can you believe DAD SAT ON THE SIDE OF THE BED!!! For almost 10 minutes! I was so proud of him and Chip said, "YAY Papa!" with the fist pump to go with it! It was great! He did 'pay' for it a little afterwards (lots of spasms and pain) but it was well worth it and  boy was I proud of him. I did take pictures of all these 'baby steps' because I know that we will all want to be able to look back and see just how far we have come. I won't post those out of respect for him and our family - but one day we will look back and just shake our heads!

I do know that quite a few people are following us and our journey here, and i'd like to give you a quick update, as well, on the status of all the appointments, etc. We were to have a doctors appointment in Birmingham two days ago (on Thursday the 2nd) and that got re-scheduled for May 24th in hopes that dad will be significantly better and more independant at that point. ALSO, i need to clarify that the actual surgery and DBS procedure has NOT been scheduled yet. The appointment on the 24th is to start that process and we will have more information for you on that, hopefully, by mid-June.

Now, I have taken lots of other pictures of a few joyous moments throughout this journey that we have experienced. As you can only imagine a 4-year old knows only how to love fully and play hard, and that brings lots of joy and laughter to all who get to experience it. So for now, enjoy these pictures, and I hope for new updates with new pictures soon.

OH, and remember, as Chris Tomlin has put it so well:
"Our God is greater, our God is stronger
God You are higher than any other
Our God is Healer, awesome and power

Our God, Our God... 
Into the darkness you shining
Out of the ashes we Rise
There's no One like You
None like You."

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

the battle is the Lords

Well, we arrived safely here in Alabama with little to no hassle. A mini-scare on the airplane that made me a little concerned that I wouldn't make it to Atlanta on time, but we did and all was well. We are here now, and trying to get our 'sea legs' about us. I unpacked our suitcases and put clothes in drawers, got toothbrushes out, got some play time in between all the summer showers (welcome back to the south!), and now Ii am fighting a small battle with Chip of obeying and following certain rules - but considering all the elements, he is doing GREAT. We will get there - it just might take some time.

Today, though, I experienced my first battle that will be one of many I'm sure. I feel like we had a mini victory and now we are moving on. We did find out a little more information about the upcoming time frame as well as were able to move an appointment without 'losing our place in line' for the DBS. Just like in David fighting his giant - Goliath - so we find ourselves fighting this giant of Dystonia and claiming as David did that "All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.” Psalm 18:2 says, The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold." PRAISE BE TO GOD!

We are all adjusting well and, though, I tell you what - it is HOT in Alabama, folks! I mean FOR REAL HOT! I can't help but laugh at myself thinking how miserably hot and humid it is. I have not lived in PA for even a year, and boy, 9 months makes a huge difference!

The family time being here is good. The laughter and joy that Chip has been able to bring my dad has been priceless. The laughs that we have shared over silly things or even laughing at some fun past stories has made this so bearable. My mom mentioned how she didn't realize how 'quiet' the house had become until we got here - and that is a good thing. Mom has gotten some much needed rest and taken quite a few naps since I've been here. We are even hoping that she will have the opportunity and feel the freedom to be able to go back to work next week.

I will be posting pictures soon and more information about Dystonia, but until then, keep praying and please spread information about Dystonia to all you know!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

heading to Sweet Home Alabama

Well, the time has come for Chip and I to make a journey to Alabama to help my parents fight the disorder of Dystonia until my dad can have his DBS (Deep Brain Stimulation surgery). This is earlier than expected and that is ok! We weren't planning on heading down until late May, but Gods ways are not our own. Isaiah 55:8-9 says, "'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,' declares the Lord. 'As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.'" God's ways are higher and his plans are better! So we will go to Alabama with the Lord at the front of our mind!

There is a time in our life when we realize that we are a small part of His big plan, and where He wants us to go, and when He wants us to go will be made evident over time. Also, there are moments when you just know that being the hands and feet of Jesus is something that you are not going o understand or even like, but it will be an opportunity to put into someone else, what the Lord has put into you. This trip is not going to be a vacation, fun, or even always enjoyable, but I am choosing to see this as an opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus to my parents. 

I am being given the opportunity to do something for someone - someone special! I am also seeing this as an opportunity to watch God do an incredible work! This will be an experience that I will choose to see through the eyes of Christ. Ministry is not always pleasant, pretty, or perfect, but we serve a God who is all of those things and more. He is a good God, gracious, all sufficient, and ever present God! 

Romans 12:2 says "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will." This is going to be the scripture that I am going to pray and believe during this trip and this journey! God is going to do an amazing work and even through the miracle of modern medicine, LITERALLY renew my dads mind! And God has placed me in a position to be able to watch it happen - incredible!

NOW, "What can we do for you and/or Tony?" is the main question we have been asked! Prayer is going to be the best defense and gift you can give us. We do have a few specific things that we are asking for bold and direct prayers about:
1. Pray that God will be able to use me (Rebecca) in ways that even I can't imagine and that He will give me strengths that I never could anticipate or have on my own!
2. Pray that the adjustment for Chip will be smooth, easy, and clear. That we will all know how to give to him and love him in a way that he needs to feel secure, safe, comfortable, etc.
3. Pray for Tony that he will have a strength that is unwavering and that his relationship with the Lord will grow in the silent moments - as there will be lots! 
4. Pray for my dad to remain strong in his faith through this trial and begin praying NOW for the physicians and surgeons hands to be led by the Great Physician! We serve a big God who is capable and still performs miracles every day! 
5. Pray for my mom to remember to always refill herself so that she can continue to give to my dad in a way that only God will provide for her! 
6. And pray for my brother and his wife and my niece, Laynie, that the arrival of their new baby in the midst of this will be a time of joy and celebration that the Lord is bringing to my family! 

Beyond fervent prayer during this time and continual words of support, we don't know specifically what we 'need' yet. In reality, we have all we need - Jesus is enough! And Jesus in all of you, through your words, gestures, prayers, and encouragement will be enough through this time!

NOW - please educate yourself on Dystonia if you haven't already! This disorder is the number 3 neurological disorder in the nation and awareness and research is needed! If you would like to make a donation to the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation, please go to: and make a donation of any amount in honor of my dad - Tim Hornsby! Even just $5 makes a difference and will be honored and used by a great organization that has done so much for our family! Thank you all and look forward to my next post - from Sweet Home Alabama!!!!


Monday, April 8, 2013

dinosaurs need jammies, too!

isn't he beautiful?!?!
Well, so the time has come for me to take a breath, have a quiet moment, and put to words what has been happening in the life of Team Sharp over the last week. As of lately, the weather has warmed up, birds have begun to sing music to my ears, toys have been pulled out of the garage, we made a trip to NJ to see my cousin and aunt, and naps have been reintroduced to counteract the added activity! Lately, too, though, I have started counting down the days until I make a trip back to Alabama.

building a wooden train - FUN!!!

In the beginning of May, my dad will have the first appointment of many before he takes the big step of having Deep Brain Stimulation surgery - praying all goes well. I will be heading down there toward the end of May for an unknown length of time to help out. It is incredible at how God puts us in a position to be able to make trips such as this with such ease. Now, don't get me wrong in saying that it will be easy to leave, but all stressors that are involved on a trip like this - timing, work, finances, etc. - God has absolutely set 'just so' that I can leave and not take certain pieces of 'baggage' along with me. I am asked often how I feel about leaving for such a trip and I can't help but think that God is in such control that I can't help but look forward to what He has to teach me, show me, prove to me, and do for me in this tough time.
my at the concentration!

God will grow my marriage through the distance if I allow him too! God will strengthen my parents in the weakest moments of their lives if they allow him too! God will show me that timing IS everything if I open my eyes to see it! And, God will prove to me that He is the great physician if I surrender the physicians and surgeons to His power!

L to R: Day, Chip, Aunt Lisa, Tony, Me
(at the Mall in NJ before we all parted ways)
For now, though, I am still living my life to the fullest in Pennsylvania knowing that we are only promised today and this exact moment! The other day, Chip asked me if I thought that it was ok if he could sleep with his new dinosaur ("Smash"). After I chuckled at the thought, I said "Sure! I think that is a great idea!" and we headed upstairs to put on his pajamas. About that moment, the wheels in his little brain began to turn and he looked at me and said, "Mom, Smash needs jammies, too!" Well, like any good mom, I agreed that, yes, Smash needed jammies, too, and went across the hall into my office, found an old tshirt that I could cut the sleeve off of, did so, and then cut 'leg holes' in the sleeve along with a hole for his tail! What a proud moment as Chip reveled in the reality that Smash, too, had jammies and they were going to get to sleep together! Over the next few days, all of the 'important' toys got jammies, too, and I then realized that in an instant, and with just a little bit of effort, a boy can find joy in just about anything!

silly boys!!!
Chip has a sense about him that doesn't see race, religion, sexuality, political party, denomination, or anything else that we adults draw lines in the sand about. He sees a toy as a friend, a tree in the back yard as a hiding spot, an old rope out of the garage as a fishing line, a Red Flyer wagon as a train, and he sees his dinosaurs as his friends! These moments won't last long and his innocence won't be this pure forever and so until then, I have decided that even Dinosaurs need jammies, too, and I am happy to make jammies for them all!

L to R: Smash (with jammies), Bo (with jammies), Tower (with jammies)
and Chip (in jammies)