Thursday, April 30, 2009

Bag That

I love the idea. Repurposing. Finding a new use for something. I don't have the sewing skills but my friend and her mom do. They make beautiful purses with zippers and pockets. Embellishments too. But I'm good at finding deals on 100% wool jackets for them. I snap them up at the thrift stores on $1 days or even better, free color tag days. Thanks for my nifty new felted purse, ladies!

a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; Ecclesiastes 3:7 ESV

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Love and Support

You could feel the love. And support. Friends young and old gathered at a bridal shower for my friend's daughter. The bride-to-be confessed her lack of cooking skills. And advice poured in. It's okay, sweetie. You'll learn. Hey, I still call my mom and mother-in-law after almost 24 years of marriage.

Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, Titus 2:3-4 ESV

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Try Some

My husband has been hankering for some comfort food. So I followed the family recipe for good old tater tot casserole. Minus the canned soup. I made soup from scratch.

But I never had a side of geoduck with it before. (Pronounced "gooey-duck"). My Chinese neighbor brought some over and stir-fried it with sliced ginger for us to try. Not bad. He tried my casserole and liked it.

Tater Tot Casserole: Layer one pound of cooked ground beef and one diced onion, frozen peas, and two cans of condensed cream of mushroom soup mixed with almost one can of water. Top with tater tots and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until the tater tots are golden.

She is like the ships of the merchant; she brings her food from afar. Proverbs 31:14 ESV

Monday, April 27, 2009

Just What I Needed

I had a key so I let myself in. My parents won't mind. They are across the ocean in China. My parents' home is on a lake--the perfect setting for my daughter to paint landscapes for her watercolor class.

It was downright chilly outside and unheated in the house. I made a cup of tea and checked the freezer for some of my mom's cinnamon rolls. Nada.

Bless his heart, my husband had a hot dinner waiting when we got home. Including homemade bread sticks. With thanks to the assistant chef, my younger daughter.

Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God. Hebrews 13:16 ESV

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Happy Chick Day

My husband was beginning to wonder if anything would happen. But today he went up to his classroom and found one chick in the incubator. A couple more pipped the shells. (Poked a hole). You can hear them cheeping. Hopefully they will hatch during school tomorrow. Speaking of young chicks, happy birthday to my sister Kathleen!

O LORD, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. Psalm 104:24 ESV

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Snap Happy

I know I'm not the best photographer. But I snap away in hopes of capturing the moment. My family is very patient with my "just one more" requests. And the delays when I press the off button instead of the shutter.

Pictured: My daughters at the Seattle Aquarium.

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 1 Corinthians 13:4 ESV

Friday, April 24, 2009

Life Cycles

Sometimes I live in a zoo. Most of the critters are in my husband's second grade class. But some come home. I absent-mindedly opened the yogurt container sitting on the counter while I was on the phone. The holes punched in the lid should have been a clue. Ahh! I forgot about my husband's caterpillars. The ant farm is cool to watch. Contained, thank you. I hope the chicken eggs in the incubator hatch successfully. Second grade is fun!

And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:25 ESV

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Field Trippin'

It's hard to beat a field trip like that. Twenty-three third graders with thirty-some parents, grandparents, siblings rode the train to Seattle. We had a class on sea life at the Seattle Aquarium with lots of time to take in the awesome exhibits. My older daughter arranged to miss her classes so she could join us. We had a great day.

And at the end of the day, who is also on the train? Your son coming home from college for the weekend to surprise you.

I can't believe my husband and older daughter knew his plans and didn't let on. Good one, guys!

Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. 1 Peter 3:8 ESV

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Feeling the Love

My friend asked what five things I like about motherhood. Actually in blogspeak, she "tagged" me. That means she posted her answer and tagged five others to respond. I like, no love:
1. the wonder of giving birth to my best friends
2. my children are my biggest fans. (Along with their dad.)
3. forgiveness and grace freely extended
4. how my little acts of kindness don't go unnoticed
5. I never tire of reading children's books.

Let your father and mother be glad; let her who bore you rejoice. Proverbs 23:25 ESV

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Give it Up

Where's my special treatment? No warmers. No slapping one arm and then the other. Just one stick and she was done. I don't give up my blood easily. This gal was good. I hope she's on duty when I go again in six months.

give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 ESV

Monday, April 20, 2009

Take a Good Look

I told my girls to pay attention. Take a look at your dad. See how he came home from working all day and jumped in and made dinner? Did you know that last night he read through the project I was working on and gave me feedback even though it was way past his bedtime? This is the kind of guy you want to marry.

However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband. Ephesians 5:33 ESV

Sunday, April 19, 2009

And Away They Go

I am going to miss them. My parents are on their way back to China for seven weeks. They will visit hospitals and schools, old friends and new. We had a nice lunch together before they met the shuttle to the airport hotel.

May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. Colossians 1:11-12 ESV

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Retrace My Steps

No one noticed. Or said anything to me. Yesterday I ran around all day wearing two different shoes. I grabbed two black slip-on shoes and didn't notice that one was leather and one was suede.

Some days I'm home all day. But that day those shoes went to school where my husband teaches, including the principal's office, to coffee with my mother-in-law and daughter, rode in my friend's car to the next town, walked through the rollerskating rink while I took pictures and talked to parents on a school outing, and back to school. Then to two grocery stores. And around the house the rest of the evening.

But when I changed my shoes to walk on the treadmill I had a good laugh.

But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity; redeem me, and be gracious to me. Psalm 26:11 ESV

Friday, April 17, 2009

Return of the Snow Birds

What's better than coffee? Coffee and a lemon bar. And what's even better? Having my mother-in-law back in town. Welcome back Snow Birds!

Pictured: My mother-in-law and my daughter sampling a lemon bar at our favorite coffee shop. By the way, the lemon bar is not as big as it looks in this photo.

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. Colossians 3:14 ESV

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Cued Up

He knows the cues. When my husband trades his Birkenstocks for tennis shoes, the dog is at the front door ready for a walk. I get up in the morning and see the people off. Before I finish checking email, our golden retriever trots down the hall and curls up next to my bed. He gets confused when I don't take my morning nap. So do I.

May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, Colossians 1:11 ESV

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Carry Out the Mission

I know how the story ends. But I'm open to learning something new. And so I come to Samson in the book of Judges. Things don't go so well for the big strong guy. Not that he helped himself. Delilah wasn't his first love. Or first manipulative woman in his life. But mostly I'm sad for his parents. When did they know that Samson did carry out God's mission for him? How did they get through those dark days? By faith with lots of God's grace.

And Manoah said, "Now when your words come true, what is to be the child's manner of life, and what is his mission?" Judges 13:12 ESV

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Now That You Mention it

How does that happen? You hear about something, and then you see it. Is it just heightened awareness? Yesterday a friend mentioned a children's book, Mr. Gumpy's Outing. Not to be confused with Grumpy. I'd heard of it but never read it. Until today. There it was in the waiting room. Fun little book with interesting illustrations to read while my daughter waited to see the dentist.

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Psalm 127:3 ESV

Monday, April 13, 2009

Can You See Me Now?

We navigated construction in Bremerton. Found the terminal. Dropped my son off. Waved good-bye. No need to pay to park.

But my son had a few minutes before departure so my daughter and I parked the car. Dropped two bucks in the slot. We met up with him before he walked on the ferry headed for Seattle.

But who is that on the upper deck waving and jumping up and down? Bye Son! Have fun at the scholarship luncheon in Seattle!

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. Colossians 3:14 ESV

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Sunday

That's something you don't see every Sunday. Our family on time for church. Early even. Sitting closer to the front. We should try this every week. Not just Easter. Who was that well-dressed young man sitting with them? One son home from college. Too bad our older son couldn't make it.

and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. Luke 24:46 -47 ESV

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Something to Celebrate

I want some of that. Enthusiasm. Energy. Excitement. The thrill of finding hidden treasure. Like the once-a-year Easter egg hunts. Or how about celebrating God's Gift year-round? Every day. Thank You, Jesus.

that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God's mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Colossians 2:2-3 ESV

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday

We went up to the school at night to turn the eggs. Chicken eggs in the incubator. Perfect for viewing the wax paper and tissue crosses in the window, thanks to my husband's first and second graders.

but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 ESV

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Elephant Ears

It's inevitable. Happens every time someone in the family does a project. My third grader researched elephants for her science oral report. Now I'm going to see elephants everywhere.

Last night I saw an Asian elephant in a tv commercial. I looked to see if its ears were shaped like the country of India. Yes. African elephants are much bigger. And their ears are shaped like the continent of Africa.

Pictured: My daughter and her third grade teacher. With special thanks to Big Brother for helping with research and Big Sister for helping with the posters.

Beasts and all livestock, creeping things and flying birds! Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth! Young men and maidens together, old men and children! Let them praise the name of the LORD, for his name alone is exalted; his majesty is above earth and heaven. Psalm 148:10-13 ESV

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Look Ma

I found out that my mom is hip. Up to date. She changed her ways. Even though she has been typing since before I was born. I am stuck in the past. I always type two spaces at the end of a sentence. But if she can change, maybe I can too.

P.S. Happy Birthday, Mom!

Pictured: My four children and my parents

She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: "Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all." Proverbs 31:26-29 ESV

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Learn on Me

You can learn on me. I will be patient. But no, I will not pay double to return an item of clothing and make an even exchange. I'm guessing it was the checker's first return. The woman in line behind me at the thrift store was not so patient. She had an appointment to get to. So I said never mind. The checker will have to learn on someone else. Unless I try again tomorrow.

And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. 1 Thessalonians 5:14 ESV

Monday, April 06, 2009

Knock Knock

They had several things in their favor. The twin boys are from down the street. Unlike many of the door-to-door solicitors that come knocking. They gave a nice speech about their soccer fundraiser. Answered my questions. Five bucks for a pizza card? I can do that. For them. And they even laughed at my corny jokes. How could I say no?

Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God. Hebrews 13:16 ESV

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Tag Team Lunch

It was my older daughter's idea. How about packing a picnic lunch for after church? My husband gathered supplies this morning. While he showered I drizzled apple slices with lemon juice and prepped carrots. While I finished getting ready for church my younger daughter rounded up a basket and stocked it with cups, napkins, and the last of Sister's homemade oatmeal cookies. She filled the water bottles. After church we grabbed a couple foot-long sandwiches. Found a picnic table in the spring-at-last sun. Perfect.

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. Colossians 3:14 ESV

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Dropping by the Neighborhood

They knew what my first question would be. Did you get a picture? No, but they had a great story to share. My husband and daughters saw a skydiver overhead, and tried to follow his route to get a good picture. No picture, but they found him landing in a church parking lot. He untangled his parachute and was happy to accept a ride to the local airport.

For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. Psalm 91:11 ESV

Friday, April 03, 2009

Let It Go

Believe me, I've heard them all. Many, anyway. Strategies for decluttering. Set a timer, box things up and see if you miss them, ask what's the worst that could happen if I get rid of this?, have I used this lately? and so on.

The one that's working for me right now is asking, "Can I replace this?" Does the library carry this book? Do my parents have it on their shelves? I let go of the full-size sheets this week. If we ever need more, we can find them at the thrift store. Maybe even the ones I donated.

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19 ESV

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Making Progress

I cut the grass with scissors. My husband wields a scythe. Powerfully and effectively. Yet with restraint. He isn't afraid to go where no man or woman has gone in years. Bring on the home organizing.

a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; Ecclesiastes 3:6 ESV

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Hit Hard

So much for bouncing back and joining the family today. I'm still fighting the side effects of last night's MS shot. That truck hit me and came back for more. I'm hanging out with the heating pad until the headache and body aches go away. I'm glad it's not like this every week. Bless the family for cleaning and organizing all day on their spring break.

I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. Philippians 4:12 ESV