Grabbing Some Gear

20110728-085204.jpgIt’s very difficult to get Evan to sit still. To sit still to take a picture… very, very hard. To sit still while wearing a hat… impossible.

So take a hard long look at this picture because it is almost a miracle.

April snapped this pic at Tsunami Surf Shop shortly after a MONSOON at BoardWalk on the Beach in Myrtle Beach.

Rainy Vacations

20110728-084624.jpgPawley’s Island 2011 started off pretty rocky. With 3 rainy days to start it off, the kids (and us) were all getting pretty cranky.

This picture was taken on the way back to the condo after spending a very wet, rainy afternoon at Broadway on the Beach in Myrtle Beach.

A New Member of the Family

20110726-080427.jpgThere’s a knock at my front door one afternoon a couple of weeks ago. My neighbor says she needs some help helping her next door neighbor with a stray dog.

Apparently, this dog found its way to this lady’s porch and decided she wouldn’t move from there. The Augusta July heat was tremendous that day and the poor little dog wouldn’t take water or even let anyone get close to her. I told the lady,
“I’ll come back down here when my wife gets home to watch the kids and get her”
I went home to pray not to wait.

The wounds of Chase and Butler still haven’t healed all the way and I didn’t want to get “Stuck” with this dog. I didn’t mind taking care of her until some little kid or older lady came to claim the dog, but we were NOT keeping it.

I got her home and while washing the fleas off of her I explained to Gabby that we were not keeping the dog. We were just going to take care of it while her owners searched for her. Gabby asked if we should make some signs to help the owners find her. Later that night we did just that.

A couple of days later, I left for my second year of Bankers School, a graduate degree program in banking, and also left my wife with this flea-bitten mutt.

Amber was ANTI-DOG at this point. For me to say the wounds hadn’t healed from Chase and Butler was the understatement of the year for her. She had obviously erected this wall agains getting hurt again and wanted nothing to do with the dog.

By the time I got home, the dog was being called “Peanut” and was working it’s way into the family. No calls came in from the signs and I could feel the tension mounting to one single question…

Can we keep her?

I must of said that a thousand times as a child. As a parent to my two favorite parents, I am so sorry mom and dad.

What a tough question. I prayed about it and decided that we needed to have a family meeting to answer this difficult quandary.

We set some ground rules and Gabby changed her name to Pickles.

I cannot help but think that this dog is an answer to prayers. Maybe not mine or even Ambers, but Gabby seems to really have some strong prayers. None-the-less, our little Pickles is the newest member of the family.

It leaves me with this lesson. Ever heard that saying that love finds you when you are not looking? Well, so far it has.

Kooper 7 weeks

Wow our little Koop is 7 weeks old almost 2 months times does really. Kenn and I are over the moon to have our precious angel in our lives he is such a blessing. We are also so thankful that Kooper’s “Tio” has put a Meet the Maas’ on their Meet the McKinney’s page so friends and family can see Kooper grow. Thank you Uncle for posting stuff aboutnme and for letting mommy and daddy post too!


Is My Old Apartment On My Credit?

Lucy writes in: “I have questions about a credit check. I had to give my SSN for a credit check on an apartment. Will the person seeing the check be able to see old leases from 2007 from a different state?


Lucy, if they were negative they will show up. Your addresses that you lived will also show up.
I recommend you get a free copy of your credit report twice a year. Most states allow twice, but federal law allows one per year.

Go to or and request your report.
The free one will jot have your score. You will have to pay for that, but I do recommend it.

If you paid the leases as agreed the management company usually do not report to the credit bureaus. It’s when you leave the place a mess, leave without proper notice, or just simply get evicted that you find claims against your credit report.

For more about what affects your credit see my post on Your Credit Score.

McKinney Kid Pics

20110709-072138.jpgI love when my kids act crazy. That natural born sense of humor they show.

Dear Gabby and Evan,
I hope that one day you realize that your childhood was not only a series of good times and laughter, but your good times and laughter were medicine to those around you. When I am having tough day, it is your smiles and laughter that turn it around. You are both a gift to us and we are grateful.

You both have the ability to change the world with your smiles and laughter. You are amazing. Never let that go. God gave it to you for a purpose.


Be Still

20110709-074802.jpgYou probably have other things to do right now. You probably came here while goofing off on Facebook or catching up on the McKinneys.

But… Recently after listening to the prayer requests on the podcast I heard someone mention having so much going on that they were overwhelmed.

I too know a little about being overwhelmed from time to time. Reading the word (or listening to it) daily helps me to remember “Be Still”.

Be Still and Listen is something I try to do when I can. It’s not easy to do this “Be Still”.
Totally not in the Bible, but definitely worth mentioning is what Jacki Chan tells Willow Smith in the Karate Kid (new version). “Being still and not moving are too different things” paraphrasing of course. You get the idea though.

Being Still takes real work. You have to be able to clear your head. Deal with all of the thoughts that are on our mind by taking them captive and choosing to deal with them later.

Try being still for 5 minutes. I bet you will struggle at first, but as you get better at it stretch it to longer and longer each day. Soon you will be able to Be Still AND Listen.