Saturday, February 24, 2007

It's Official...

Kelly Spann is named head coach for the 2007 Fellowship of Christian Athletes Grays!

The FCA Grays is a summer collegiate baseball team, based in Kansas City, Missouri, and plays in the M.I.N.K. (Missouri-Iowa-Nebraska-Kansas) League. We're really excited that Kelly has been asked to fill this position and look forward to a baseball-filled summer.

There are still lots of details to be fine-tuned but here's what we're looking at thus far: Kelly is the head coach with 3 assistants and a roster of college baseball players. Being based in KC (also home of FCA Headquarters), Kelly will report the weekend of May 26th, with the first game scheduled for June 2nd. Kelly will be assigned a host family, which will provide meals and housing. They play nearly everyday, traveling throughout the league. The team also participates in bible studies, youth camps, clinics and service projects. The regular season ends in late July with playoffs extending into the first 2 weeks of August.

So, what about the rest of us? As Kelly will be gone all summer, the kids and I will go it alone part-time and travel to Kansas City for much of the summer. As of now, we plan to take 2 extended trips and stay with my sister and her family. It's going to be a crazy, exciting season.

And yes, it's a summer position, so Rochester will continue to be our home. There are still details to be worked out, namely financial, but we're going on faith (and support) on this one. FCA is a great organization and Kelly is looking forward to being part of it. We're not making hard-and-fast plans, as we'll be as flexible as possible. Our summers involve many celebrations, including our 10-year anniversary and all of our birthdays, so we'll have to be creative this year.

We would definitely appreciate your prayers as we anticipate a busy but wonderful summer, and especially as the finer details on our part are finalized. As you're making your summer plans, why not come through the midwest and catch a game? We'd love to see you! We'll get a schedule out soon (as well as letter with more details and requests for your prayers!).

So, as I gaze out the window at the snow and freezing rain, I know it's just a matter of months until we're sitting in the sun, enjoying a game and cheering on our team! Go Grays!

Ugh Canada!

Well, we're back. I wish we could say that our trips went smoothly, all was uneventful and we've returned home feeling well rested and content. Like I said, I wish. Kelly's venture up to Canada included the following: multiple and extended stops at the border, several hundred dollar fines for "legal fees", a charter bus in a ditch with a broken window, three game losses, one trip to the emergency room for a player and creative financial negotiating throughout on Kelly's part. Add a winter storm and the package is complete.

My trip wasn't quite as eventful, but resulted in an early departure due to the winter storm warnings. Our new van proved trustworthy and faithful, even as we slid across I-35 and landed in the median facing the opposite direction. A 6 1/2 hour trip slowly streched into 8 hours as we slowed to 30 mph for the last leg of the driving. And though we did find ourselves in the beginnings of the storm, I still think we've missed the worst of it (especially as I look out the window and see the frozen rain descending upon 6 inches of new snow.) We did enjoy one beautiful day at the park, however, basking in the afternoon sun and a balmy 55 degrees.

We're now home, trying to recover from colds - you know, the kind that keep you (and everyone else) up all night with a barking cough. And we've officially decided that the farthest we'll venture out is the driveway (with the snow blower, of course). Our plans for today are as follows: relax, nap, drink hot chocolate, light a fire in the fireplace, another nap and if we're feeling up for it, perhaps we'll watch a movie.

Hmm... whoever invented hibernation was really on to something...

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Weekend Plans

Today all members of the Spann family are headed out. Kelly is traveling to Manitoba, Canada for the men's and women's basketball tournament via charter bus, and the kids and I head south, to my sister's home in Kansas City (uh... via minivan). It's relatively warm (30s!), the sun is shining and we're looking forward to our "mini-vacation".

Just doing our thing... Claire celebrated 100 days of school this week, as well as was tested for accelerated reading (her favorite hobbies: reading, writing, and drawing, all of which are impressive, of course as her mother I'm not biased in any way). Nolan seems to get older every day as we round the bend, approaching 4 years in May.

Hope all who read this are well, we'd love to hear from you. Have a great weekend!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Colossians 3:21

"Fathers, do not exasperate your children..."

One evening, after a particulary long day, Nolan says with a gigantic sigh and heave of his shoulders:

"Mom, you're wearing me out. Mommy and Daddy are wearing me out. You are just talking to me so much. You keep talking and talking."

Don't we all feel that way sometimes??


February is one of my favorite words. I've always liked words that look different than they sound. Weird, I know. But each time I write it, I sound it out in my mind... Feb-RU-ary... and memories of grade school come flooding back. Like I said, weird.

Although it's a favorite word, it's definitely not a favorite month. It's cold and dirty (as far as the landscape goes), but it does have 2 things going for it... Valentine's Day (which was filled with great surprises, by the way) and the fact that it's a short month. Around here, it's not until March that you can begin to anticipate Spring, which hopefully will come early if Punxsutawney Phil has anything to say about it.

And now that we're parents to children who participate in sports, classes and activities, February has a new aspect to it. It's time to plan our summer. It's taken me a while to accept this fact, but now is the time to sign up for all those fun spring & summer happenings. We've already begun, with T-Ball and Tennis at the top of the list. Not to mention birthdays and anniversaries and all the things that occur in a Spann summer.

So while Feb-RU-ary may be cold and dreary, it does give us hope as we plan for things to come. We anticipate a great summer - new exciting possibilities on the horizon. More to come on that...

If you're feeling low this winter, go outside (it'll kill the germs), breathe the fresh air and know that it doesn't last forever. It'll be Spring before you know it.

Sunday, February 11, 2007


As February 14th approaches, our home is filled with cut out hearts, homemade cards and sweet treats. When asked if we have 'big plans' for Valentine's Day, Kelly & I laugh, sigh and say... no. As with most holidays, this one is for the kids. School parties, candy and small gifts make it special for them. And ask most men and they'll tell you that it's a "Hallmark holiday". Ask women and they'll tell you that it's nice to be remembered, even if it's dictated by a calendar.

Mostly, it reminds me that we should express our love and affection every day. The older I get (almost 30!) the more I realize how blessed I am to have what and who I have. I have a husband who is truly a best friend, kids I adore, family who loves me and a God who's love for me exceeds all others. Throw in a goldfish who has outlived 3 others and a move, and there's not much more a woman could ask for!

These days I'm learning two things: 1) To be content now. I don't know what's to come, but I can control how I feel about my current circumstance. Things that we're important to me just last year are taking a back seat. My priorities are shifting. 2) It's easy to love those who love us, who are like us, who know us. It's not so easy to love those who are different, have different opinions or just plain drive us crazy. But that's our calling. And often it involves a sacrifice on our part. Otherwise, would it really be love?

I hope this next week is filled with love & affection. As our kids say:
Happy Valentimes Day!!

Monday, February 05, 2007

Sunny & Cold

It's cold.

For those reading and living in Minnesota (or the upper midwest) you know what I'm talking about. For those of you checking in with us from elsewhere... let's just say it's colder than you can imagine.

It's currently -10, with an expected high of -2, though, with windchill it feels like -23.

I'm staying inside.

It is sunny, which is nice, but the lack of cloud cover makes for colder temps. I remember when a friend explained this to me in college. I couldn't grasp the concept that a sunny day meant a colder day. It still baffles my California mind.

(You see what I mean about Minnesotans and weather?!... It's consuming!)

But other than the low temperatures, life is pretty boring right now, which is good for us. We're happy just being, all the while doing what we do. I'm still trying to find my niche, to figure out what I'm supposed to be doing (besides my beloved role as mother and wife). And I am feeling more settled than I have since we've moved, and now just trying to rest in the knowledge that God has an amazing plan, and we're in the midst of it!

Stay warm, and if you are able to walk outside without a jacket... don't tell me about it!

Have a great week!