Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Swimming in the Pool

We are blessed to have neighbors with this beautiful pool, that are willing to invite us over to join them for a swim. Yesterday was hot. The children had a grand time swimming. The pool is about four feet deep. Just right to swim in and still not so deep that they can't touch if they need to.
T-Bob loves to see how many log rolls he can do without needing a breath.
They do have a little pool for the smaller children to play in. Elizabeth likes it because she doesn't have to wear a life vest in there.

Thomas straps that face mask on really tight. He still has red lips here. After about an hour, they were gray blue and his teeth were chattering.


Elizabeth just hangs out at the ladder. Even with a life vest on, she doesn't like to let go of her security. I eventually went in and took her out to the middle of the pool and played with her there. She still wasn't about to let go of me. She knows she can't swim and isn't sure how to figure it out without getting water in her ears. That is what she really hates. She doesn't even like baths for that reason.



Michelle is starting to get the hang of swimming. She has taken a while to learn. All the children just don't have much insulation to help them float, so when they assume the normal floating posture, they find themselves about 6" under water. This is somewhat fear inducing as they try and get a breath. Eventually they learn the mechanics and can swim OK. However, Micheal Phelps is in no danger of competition from our children.
~Mom

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Ice Cream Social

Our local community has an ice cream social at the library every year. This is the man that brought our family there. He is such a good daddy. He believes that "life is short - eat dessert first." We actually did go for ice cream before we ate supper. Not so much because of any philosophical premise, but more because I hadn't gotten supper made, and if we didn't go then, it would be over before we made supper and finished eating. We barely made it before it closed as it was ( I am ashamed to admit that it went until 8 PM).
T-Bob enjoyed his chocolate mint.

Elizabeth was the only one who managed to make hers last awhile. I guess she wasn't as starving as the rest.


There were all kinds of activities for the children. This is Safety Pup he teaches the children at Safety Town. There was also a barred owl, a skunk, and a snake from the local nature center. The children were able to pet them. They had Clifford the Big Red Dog there to play and dance with the children. We enjoyed looking at everything.

Thomas was the only one that chose Cookie Dough flavor ice cream instead of the chocolate mint.
I am feeling a little uncomfortable with the last two posts. It makes our family look like the sugar junkies we aren't. I tell people all the time that they should avoid sugar. Here I am showing my family eating sugar two posts in a row. Two thoughts: 1. "Pizza with friends is better than salad alone" 2. "If you eat right 90+% of the time your body can handle the occasional indiscretion, assuming you don't have a serious health condition." Incidentally, there are no pictures of me eating ice cream. I merely stole a couple bites from the children. It was nice to have an outing as a family. Oh yes, I did go home then and make supper for the family.

Cheesecake

Mommy and I went out to eat at Joes Deli, and it happened to be at the same time a a photographer was there taking picture of food for their website. They took pictures of our food and then gave us onion rings, and our choice of two pieces of cheese cake. Mommy chose chocolate and I picked key Lime cheesecake. We then took it home and shared it with the rest of the family.


I also enjoy making cheesecakes like the one above.
~Michelle

Monday, July 27, 2009

Inane Water Fountain Post

I like to see my children working together. Especially, a big brother helping a little sister. After a lot of running around in the sunshine, everyone was thirsty. This fountain has an abundant stream of cold weather.
I loved the way Elizabeth had her legs crossed and folded to keep her balance on this very tall fountain.




A nice cold drink for a glowing girl!

Sunday Afternoon at the Park

At the park, they have this sign posted on the ramp going into the playground area. My boys refuse to use it. They say that they aren't qualified. They will go to great lengths to get into the play area without using the ramp. Silly Boys!

T-Bob does well on the monkey bars. Elizabeth is starting to get the hang of them also.

Dallas just sat and watched the children play.



Dallas did get some leash training. He wasn't real excited about it. The children are working on teaching him that he is to follow and be a good pack member, but that he is NOT the leader of the pack.


He still kept trying to sneak into the lead. (Where is Michelle's other leg?, Didn't know we had a one legged girl, Pretty strange)

This is the man with the energy to take us all to the park. If it was up to me, we probably would have just stayed home. It is so much nicer at the park though. Lots of room to run! Aerobie Flying Rings are a blast. Like a frisbee, but they go a LOT farther! A little more challenging to control, especially on a windy day. They can easily travel 150-200 feet. Even when thrown by a 9 year old. I was out there tossing them around also. I decided I really could use the exercise.


T-Bob is the guy who would play all day long. He is perpetual energy. He is very coordinated. He is a lot of fun to play with.

Elizabeth got involved with the flying discs too. She enjoys playing with the big kids. She really likes playing with her Daddy. He was working with her on how to throw and catch. She did catch a couple.

Some she missed and had to run after and fetch.
It was a delightful day and a beautiful setting, Lots of green grass, bright sunshine and a cool breeze to keep us comfortable. It was so nice to spend the afternoon as a family. We did miss JoAn and Paul as they are off at camp for a week as Counsellors. I thank the Lord for the children He has blessed us with and for such a wonderful husband.
~Mom

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Davis and Christina

Our dear friend, Davis, brought his bride of 6 weeks, Christina, to come meet his other family. She is a peach. He met her down in Texas. I am so happy for them both. While they were visiting we had planned a reception for friends to gather and celebrate.

It was an appetizer and dessert reception. My friend, Mindy, did all the decorating along with some help from Christa on the flowers. It was beautiful. We even incorporated the leftover decorations from VBS. We had done a Outerspace theme for that, so there was lots of stars and black sky on the walls and ceiling. It was very romantic.


My two sisters were there with their families as well.




Elizabeth took a turn holding the youngest guest, my niece, Sadie. She is a sweetheart and a really good baby for my sister Anita.



Here is the bridal couple in all their post wedding finery. It was a lovely evening.





Dallas Goes to the Beach

Michelle decided that Dallas needed an introduction to the lake. He is a Lab/Hound mix and labs are supposed to like the water. The waves were small and so is the dog. It should have been a good mix.He liked being held and looking at the water
He didn't think that he really liked the lake though. Those white edges on the waves are pretty scary to a little guy.

Michelle called in reinforcements as it was too hard to hold a leash, a puppy, and keep your skirts dry. Dallas didn't mind the water, and was quite a capable swimmer, but he DOESN'T like the white edges of the waves as they come towards him and the noise they make. That was too scary!!


Good boy, Dallas. We'll try this again another day.



Flat Tire

This is not 'just a flat tire', this is an opportunity for our new drivers to practice and demonstrate their tire changing skills.
JoAn and Paul demonstrated teamwork as they efficiently took care of changing it. I only had to supervise and encourage. Fortunately, we had a good spare in the back. Thanks, Honey.

If you have to have a flat, down at the beach is a pretty nice place. So much better than a highway or busy road with no shoulder. There was a pleasant breeze to cool them as they worked.

It really only took them about fifteen minutes to get the job done. I feel much better about them driving around without me, now that I know that they can take care of it themselves. They did a great job.



All done and ready to roll!
This week our computer also had a rough week. We had a major update on the system and suddenly the mouse and keyboard stopped working. This made blogging very difficult. The boys figured out how to use the electronic mouse from the laptop so we could at least navigate. A young man from Church, Dan, came over and helped us work out the issues, and now it is happy again. It is really nice to have helpful and skilled young people around.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Dallas the Dog

Introducing the newest member of ourHousehold: Dallas the Dog. He is 10 weeks old now and we have had him for 2 weeks. He is a black lab/hound mix. He was a rescue puppy. He trots around the back yard in a hound fashion - nose 2-3 inches off the ground.
Dallas is quickly becoming obedient. He will 'come', 'sit'. and 'stay'. He is still working on learning how to act on a leash. He has learned that sitting is the quickest way to get his food presented, along with a tilted head and sorrowful eyes. He doesn't bark, but has been known to howl to let us know he wasn't happy or if he hears someone playing the violin nearby. Our puppy is gaining and growing rapidly. He is gaining about 2 pounds a week.

Dallas is Michelle's dog. She is his mistress and he knows it. She feeds him and cleans up his messes. He will climb over obstacles to come when she calls, however he won't yet leave his food to 'come'.


Dallas is alert and intelligent. He has a calm demeanor but is still playful. He enjoys running around the backyard with the children. He does stay away from the "Mud Chef" though when she is cooking. His dog house is under construction. We are enjoying our outside dog.
~Mom



Sunday, July 19, 2009

Elizabeth in the Mud

This summer has found Elizabeth enjoying the simple summer fun of being a mud chef. She has tried 'mud pies', 'mud cakes', and 'mud stews'. She is becoming quite the gourmet.
She meticulously makes and selects mud from different areas in the yard so that she gets the right flavor and consistency. The dirtier she gets the better she seems to think it turns out. She spends hours at this.
The simple joys of childhood.

Incidentally, the laundress has asked her to select one dress that she use as her 'chef' outfit so that all her clothes don't get ruined. Ground in mud is REALLY challenging to get out!!
~Mom



Saturday, July 18, 2009

Honoring a Godly Woman

At the VBS closing program last night time was taken to honor a godly woman. This was the 40th year we had done a VBS and Cherry D. has participated every summer. She started off teaching the preschoolers and did that for many years. Children all over the community remember having Mrs. D as their preschool teacher at VBS. Her delightful Scottish brogue has enchanted us all. I know she has prayed for each one of us as young people and now as we are adults. Her most fervent prayers were first, for our salvation and then, for us to find a godly spouse. We all grew up measuring ourselves against her petite stature and we were sure we had arrived at a major achievement when we passed her up. But no matter how tall we got, she always treasured us as her 'wee ones'. She has been an example to me in her faithfulness in loving us all and in her prayers. Even when we felt like straying, her hugs expressed God's love to us and kept us persevering. She is a great encouragement to me. We knew she wasn't perfect but we always felt perfectly loved by her.



Karl R. Did the presentation, and noted, in his typical three point fashion with alliteration, her help, her hugs, and her happiness. What a heritage! Even now, as she has passed 80 years old, she was there at VBS every day helping the 'wee ones' make their crafts and then cleaning up. She is faithful. I have been truly blessed to know her and have her for an example in my life.
On a personal note: When I was growing up, my mom would be frequently incapacitated with low back pain and have to be on bed rest for 4-6 weeks at a time. Mrs. D would come over almost every week during that time and bring a meal and help us children clean up the house. She was a tough taskmistress and I wasn't very excited to see her come with her cleaning supplies (yes, I was lazy), but as an adult I know how helpful it was to my parents to not have to worry about that. It was a sacrifice for to come so often and she had her own house and family to take care of. But she did it and there was never a complaint. Thank-you Auntie Cheerio for your ministry to our family.
~Mom

Friday, July 17, 2009

"You got to to go by the Book" or else....

Every morning, at the end of VBS, 6 people pulled together their talents, skills, and creativity to perform a drama (that doesn't include the sound guys).

Disclaimer: These videos are not edited and were taken with a camera. Thursday's video is dark, because the SS Intrepid had lost power. Also, some days, it took a minute for the children to quiet down and the actors to be ready. If you have problems viewing or any other questions, please leave a comment.

Monday (part 1)

video

We are having trouble uploading the videos directly so we'll work on other routes. More later...

~JoAn

Thursday, July 16, 2009

VBS

This week our mornings have been consumed with Vacation Bible School at W___ Bible Fellowship (where we fellowship :)). The theme has been outer space (what we know of it) and the children have learned a lot about the Bible and how it should affect their lives.

The Lord has blessed us with many children. Everyday more than 90 children have attended. Thursday was a record with 101! The Lord has also blessed us with many staff.

I had the privilege of teaching the verse and briefly sharing the gospel each day. C, one of the girls in my class, talked to my uncle (the director) and made a decision to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. All the children diligently learned and recited Bible verses throughout the week.

Today I illustrated the wise man/foolish man parable to the children. I also emphasized that Christ is the rock of our salvation. Pray that they take to heart what they learned this week and that those who aren't saved will be convicted.


The best news of all....so far, to our knowledge, C and M,a young man, have decided to trust in Christ.


"Praise the Saviour ye who know Him, who can tell how much we owe Him, gladly let us render to Him all we are and have!"

~JoAn

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Highschool Science-Advice and Warning!

This is specifically to my sibblings and any others who are before or still in highschool.

I have finally finished all my required science. Hurrah!

Advice/Warning:
BE DILLIGENT. Work on your science or any other subject you tend to dislike every school day. If you need to take a break, don't stop in the middle of a section, but right after you take a test. Otherwise when you come back, you likely will have forgotten what you already covered and have to redo work.

I have learned this the hard way. I did science every now and then through highschool, until the last year, specifically the last few months. Then I did it regularly and often because I wanted to get done. In April I realized that I needed to concentrate in order to get my Biology and Chemistry finished by the end of June. They became the focus of my schooling. I usually spent 2 hours a day studying. It was amazing how much progress I made. :) But, unless spending hours per day on science sounds good to you, just spend 20-30 minutes four days a week through out highschool and you'll probably be done early with all your highschool science.

But for now, enjoy your summer, and start to work with a will when school starts again.

~JoAn

P.S. Happy Indepence Day to everyone!