Friday, June 23, 2006

We're Off!

There will be a slight pause in blogging for the next 10 days because it's finally vacation time! Yippee!

Ryan and I will be taking our blindingly-white bodies to the Lake until the 4th of July! I can't wait! You can be looking forward to lots of stories and pictures upon our return to computerland.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Flashback Thursday

My family at Camp Adventure...there are not many places more special to us than Camp Adventure. We spent a week there as a family every summer for over 20 years in a row! Dad was the director, mom the camp nurse, and the three kids running around until we were old enough to be campers (6-8th grade) then counselors and now Angela and Johnny are there this week helping Dad, Corey, and Judy direct the camp! My dad accepted Jesus when he was a camper there in 7th grade. The circle of life, its a beautiful thing.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Everything you never knew about counting calories! Guaranteed to have a profound effect on your diet!

1. If you eat something without anyone seeing, it does not contain any calories.
2. If you drink a low calorie drink and eat a piece of chocolate cake, the calories in the drink will cancel out the calories in the cake.
3. If you eat with other people, only the calories which you consume over what the others consume count.
4. Food which is consumed for medical reasons (e.g. hot chocolate, red wine, brandy) NEVER counts.
5. The more you fatten up those around you on a day to day basis, the thinner you yourself will seem.
6. Food (crisps, peanuts, soft drinks, sweets) which is consumed when watching films, videos or listening to music does not contain any calories as it is not consumed as food or sustenance, but as part of the entertainment.
7. Biscuits and pieces of cake do not contain any fat if they are broken and eaten in small pieces, as the fat is released as vapour when the cake is broken up.
8. Everything licked from knives, spatulas or spoons when cooking does not contain any calories, because it is a part of the food preparation process.
9. Foods with the same colour have the same calorie content (e.g. tomatoes and strawberry jam, mushrooms and white chocolate).
10. Frozen food does not contain any calories, because calories are units of energy (= heat).

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


Yesterday morning Ryan saw his last patient of his 3rd year of med school! He is almost in his 4th and final year! CRAZY how fast the time goes!! I am learning that more and more as I get older. When we first got married I though it would take forever for Ryan to become a doctor, but now he is only a year away! Tomorrow is his oral exam and Friday is the written exam. When he finishes, we're going to make the long-haul to Devil's Lake to spend a couple of days with Max and Meredith Lederhos before they move back to Colorado. They have been wonderful friends to us during their time in Chicago. I will have lots of pictures to show you after our week there.

Until then, here is a satelite view of Devil's Lake. You can see Cox Cottage in Clark's Cove on the left side of the picture. If you look really close you can see me catching some rays on the dock...

Sunday, June 18, 2006


Happy Father's Day to my first date, the man who took me on our "Special Day" to Eddies Steak Shed for waffles the size of my plate, the man who taught me to bait my own hook and filet my own fish, the man who modeled what a husband should look like, the man who makes me laugh so hard that I can't breathe, the man who took me with him to more leadership, John Maxwell, Bill Hybels, Rick Warren conferences than any 7th grader should be allowed to go to! Happy Father's Day to the man who loves my mom so much and puts his family first - eventhough he has lots of other things to do, to the man who chaperroned my 5th Grade feild trip to the Swamp Stomp and took pictures of all of my friends covered in mud, to the man who grabbed a rattlesnake by the tail before it could strike me and ripped of his rattle, to the man who gave me the courage to snorkel in the dark night waters of Sweetwater Lake by leaving me a trail of bubbles to follow, to the man who built me some stilts, and then gave me some band-aids, to the man who would drive up to Holland just to take me to lunch, to the man who patiently bunny-hopped down the toll road while teaching me how to drive a stick-shift, to the man who let me go on mission trips all over the world starting in 6th grade, to the man who encouraged, cheered, supported and backed me up no matter what. I love you Daddy! You are the most incredible father a girl could ever ask for!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Cirque De Shanghai

What a weekend! Sandy and Greg McDonough came to visit, and Michelle managed to get everyone free tickets to see the Cirque Shanghai show on Navy Pier! We were amazed at how many china-men could fit on a single bicycle. We got some great shots of everyone by the lakeshore, and even got to jump into the dragon parade with the Cirque performers!

And to finish the evening, we hitched a ride on the free trolley! This picture was taken 20 seconds before 843 more people boarded our trolley.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

What is the deal with the HUGE Bug-Eye sunglasses everywhere these days? I admit, I went out and got myself a pair...and when I wore them in front of Ryan's dad over Memorial Day weekend, he laughed because he thought I was wearing Grandpa's glasses around.

Click HERE to read more about the fly-eye phenomenon.

"There is a perfectly good reason why big sunglasses, which cover large portions of women's faces, are fashionable: they cover large portions of women's faces."

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

I am a HUUUUGE fan of Jack Bauer and the show 24...which will be hitting the big sreen in the not-so-distant future. When I saw these movie posters, I had to agree that they ask some good questions...

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking told a sold-out audience at a recent lecture that the survival of the human race depends on finding another permanent base (like on the moon or Mars) in the next 20 to 40 years because some sort of disaster will destroy the Earth.

On a lighter note, he announced that he would soon be writing children’s books …

You know what is funny? This morning I had a thought about how funny it would have been back in the day when Angela and I played dress-up and house if we could have known who we would marry.

Who would have thought that my sister would marry a guy with a mohawk!?!?

We love you John!

Angela and Johnny came to Chicago over the weekend to celebrate their 2 year anniversary.

They took us to the Cheesecake Factory for dinner, and we took them to Blueberry Hill for breakfast before sending them off on the train.

It was a blast!

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Bye Bye Birdies

Remember my bird?

She had been sitting on an egg...

Which turned out to be two...

And the baby birds grew bigger and bigger every day.

And the mother bird fed them ... and fed them ... and fed them some more.

Until one day they had grown too big to fit on the window sill.

And then one morning, I looked out the window and the birdies had flown away.

The End

Friday, June 9, 2006

Red or Blue?

Over the last 9 months I have become increasingly aware of the need for people and for organizations to know about red rules and blue rules and the difference between the two.
Mark Waltz, Pastor of Connections at GCC, writes about this in his book "First Impressions, Creating WOW experiences in your church."

Click HERE to read Mark's Blog

Back to the book;

Red rules are those that cannot be broken.
Blue rules, on the other hand, are important because they help systems operate smoothly, but breaking them does not create life-threatening situations. Over the last 9 months I have learned from personal experience that many organizations treat these rules with equal importance.

More people should read Mark's book ... which would save me the hassle of teaching this concept to everyone myself.

Just so you know

Ryan is only a few weeks away from finishing his surgery rotation and becoming a 4th-year medical student. That means that by next June he will officially be Dr. Cox.

This is a preview of what he will be doing for the week vacation between 3rd & 4th year.

I am so excited for tonight!
Angela and Johnny are coming to visit!


Anyone who gets to hang out with this guy ...

... and this gal ...

... are pretty lucky! Ryan and I are hoping they get here in time for us to take them out for a proper chicago-style dinner.

Maybe to the Polish Smorgasbord.

Its going to be a blast!

Thursday, June 8, 2006

Community officials in Sydney are planning on installing a loudspeaker system in a local park that will play Barry Manilow music in an effort to drive away teenage "hooligans" who hang out there in thier loud cars with loud music, which seem to annoy residents and drive customers from area businesses.

If that doesn’t work, they will actually have to fly in Barry Manilow to hang out at the park and physically remove the teens, a drastic but effective solution …

Wednesday, June 7, 2006


This morning I decided it was time to go back thru my journal from my time in New Zealand. The following is a letter I wrote to Jesus on my first day there. I am sharing it with you because it made me realize that spiritually, I am far from where I could be and should be and want to be.

Dear Jesus,
You created me in your image, designed me to be a reflection of you, to see people the way you see them and love people the way you love them. You have a purpose for my life, a perfect and wonderful plan, a job for me to do that won't get done if I don't do it. I pray that this Descipleship Training School, this season of my life, this next six months would make me more like you, that I would be closer to knowing my purpose and closer to doing the work that you desire me to do.
I want to know you more, to love you more than anything or anyone else in my life. Take away the things that are blocking me from you. Rid me of the sins in my life that hurt your heart. You are my delight and I know that I am yours, please help me to know and realize that in a real way. Open my eyes to see you more clearly, I want to be closer to you than I ever thought possible.
Give me a new hunger and new thirst for your word. Show me things in the Scriptures that I have not previously noticed. I want to meet you regularly in our secret, quiet place, and I want to feel you within my heart always. Help me not to stray. I am weak, I need youto guide me, to lead me, to show me Your way.
I want to have a life that is honoring to you. Make my life like a love song to your heart. Using gifts and talents that you have given me makes me happier than anything else. I pray that my eyes would be open to see the opportunities that you give me to glorify you by using the gifts you have given me. You gave me leadership gifts, let me use them, let me not be afraid of them, but develop those skills. Get me out of my comfort zone. I want my voice to be an instrument, a tool for you. I want to tell people your name, JESUS! Get me out on a limb for you and I will speak with your words. Use me Jesus.
I give everything I have to you. More than anything I want to be the woman you desire me to be. Let me not be distracted, let me focus only on you. I need your strength, I cannot do this alone. Hold me, protect me, teach me, grow me.
I pray for my loved ones, for my family and for my boyfriend Ryan, that you would send your heavenly angels to watch over them. Wrap your arms around them and hold them Lord. I pray for my team, that you would unite our hearts and give us a common vision. I pray for all the people who will come to know you more through our ministry over the next six months. Begin preparing their hearts to accept you. prepare their ears to hear you, prepare their eyes to see you. Reveal yourself, I pray, to all of us. Let us bask in the glory that you shine upon us.
I need you, I want you, I love you Jesus.
Your Daughter Amber


Some lady gave me the finger this morning ... twice

Ironically, she gave it to me right as I was listening to the latest radio news story about the disease now identified as "intermittent explosive disorder." Apparently 16 million Americans are suffering from this disorder.

I encountered one of those diseased people this morning.

The 5 Things You Need to Know Before You Go

My dad, Mark Beeson ... what a guy!

He recently spoke to the graduating Seniors at Lifeline, the High School Ministry at Granger Community Church.

Click here to read a re-cap of "The 5 Most Important Things to Know Before You Go."

The Extinction of Blondes? Really??

"According to a study by the World Health Organization (WHO), natural blonds are likely to be extinct within 200 years, because there are too few people carrying the blond gene. The WHO study claims that the last natural blond is likely to be born in Finland during 2202."

Click HERE to read more about my dying breed...

Tuesday, June 6, 2006

Simply Strategic Show

Tim & Tony's new podcast is now available.
Click HERE to find out about the weather and where the "sissies" live.


Have you ever heard of the DC Slug Lines? I think they're a pretty awesome concept!

Slugging is a term used to describe a unique form of commuting found in the Washington, DC area sometimes referred to as "Instant Carpooling" or "Casual Carpooling." It's unique because people commuting into the city stop to pickup other passengers even though they are total strangers! However, slugging is a very organized system with its own set of rules, proper etiquette, and specific pickup and drop-off practices

Monday, June 5, 2006

Donut Days

Friday morning I got to hang out downtown asking people on the street if they would like 6 free donuts from Dunkin' Donuts. Anyone who donated to "Taking a Bite Out of Hunger" got a coupon for 6 free donuts. I was amazed at how many people didn't want six free donuts. I was also amazed at how many people did! Especially that group of Jr. Highers touring Millennium Park on a field trip.

The Salvation Army does the Red Kettles Campaign at Christmas time and Donut Days in the summer to raise money for the rest of the year. Some people chose to stand on a corner with their donation boxes as they waited for someone to put money in. I walked up and down Michigan Avenue and Millennium Park for 4 hours straight asking everyone I saw if they would like 6 free donuts. My box was so full of money that no one could fit any more $$ in! I think I won my contest that I made for myself. "Raise the most money in 4 hours that anyone has ever raised for The Salvation Army."

After 4 hours, I did get escorted out of Millennium Park by two friendly police officers. I asked them if they would like to donate ... and of course, they did :o)