Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Thanks for Sharing

I don't know if I could do it. Be that vulnerable. I am inspired and encouraged by one of my favorite bloggers, Meredith of Like Merchant Ships. She bravely revealed the before photos of her pantry. She shares the plan for reclaiming it. And challenges me to consider the heart issues of my own organizational challenges.

Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble." 1 Peter 5:5 ESV

Monday, June 29, 2009

Dessert Memory Lane

Do I have a story for everything? Maybe. I should have put explanatory notes on the dessert table. I baked family favorites for our open house.

The monster cookies have peanut butter and oatmeal in them. I baked them every time my daughter had an away-soccer game.

My applesauce cake is a neighborhood favorite. My daughter is known for her marble cake. I make the chocolate cake with buttermilk and coffee when my son comes home.

My mom knows how to crank out the cinnamon rolls with my great-grandmother's cooked icing. And my mother-in-law made the new favorite apple cake.

I need to learn how to make low-fat cheesecake. But that's another story.

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

Sunday, June 28, 2009

My Favorite Number

Four.

Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Romans 12:10 ESV

Saturday, June 27, 2009

That's an Open House

That's the way we like it. Mix it up. Bring old and new friends together. From near and far. Bring on the good food. Visit. Find out how you know the others at the party. With special thanks to my parents for opening their home for our open house event.

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

Friday, June 26, 2009

Brace Yourselves

I warned the family. Now that our oldest is home, we can get a family photo. Think about where and how to arrange six people. Do we have a tripod or willing volunteer? Meanwhile, here is a crazy photo op from almost nine years ago.

Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another,
Colossians 3:12 ESV

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Orange Inspiration

I look for inspiration in the orange stickers. The marked down items at my local grocery store. Combine that with what I have at home. Either in the pantry, fridge, or freezer. Or food items from friends. Like tonight I started with reduced-for-quick-sale bread. Add eggs from a friend's chickens and sausage links in the freezer. French toast with cinnamon and nutmeg and a splash of vanilla. No one seems to mind breakfast for dinner.

She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Proverbs 31:27 ESV

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Team Welcome

It was a team welcome operation. My son and daughter went to the airport to fetch my older son. My youngest made a banner and vacuumed the boys' room. I made dinner. How about homemade calzone, a family favorite? Brownies for dessert. And don't forget the welcome home art in the driveway thanks to little friends.

A Song of Ascents. Of David. Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity! Psalm 133:1 ESV

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Kid at Heart

I pretend that I have some official role. I take photos and help promote school events for the private Christian school where my husband teaches. But really I go to events like today's story time because I enjoy listening to stories. I look forward to next month's story time on July 23rd.

Pictured: My youngest borrowed a hat at today's story time with a hat theme.

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 1 Timothy 6:17 ESV

Monday, June 22, 2009

On Count of Three

Have a few minutes to wait? And a digital camera? Snap some photos. Ready, set, jump! Even Mom can get in on the action every now and then. It doesn't take much to entertain us. I think that's a good thing.

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 1 Timothy 6:17 ESV

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Don't Settle for Less

Girls, take notes. This is the kind of man you want to marry. Kind. Godly. Wise. God gave me a wonderful dad. Your grandpa. Don't settle for less. It worked for me. Look at your dad. And sons, this is the kind of man you want to be.

Happy Father's Day, Dad!
Happy Father's Day to my husband!

For our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience, that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you. 2 Corinthians 1:12 ESV

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Make the Rounds

That's what you do. Meet and greet. Catch up. Eat. And congratulate the graduate of course. Good times at graduation parties. I made it to two today, my husband three. You don't always make new friends. I did.

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 1 Timothy 6:17 ESV

Friday, June 19, 2009

Highest Honors

Another cap and gown. Blue this time. And cord. My daughter received her AA degree tonight. It's not easy keeping up with high school requirements while taking college classes full-time. But she did it. With highest honors. We are very proud!

To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12 ESV

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Jam Session

It sounds like something my mom would do. But it was my son's idea. Run out of strawberries for the strawberry short cake? Bring out the homemade strawberry jam from a friend. Works for me. Using up dated milk to make buttermilk biscuits? My mom taught me that.

She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Proverbs 31:27 ESV

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Hello Summer 2009

I felt sorry for the ice cream man. No takers on our side of the neighborhood today. Not when there is ice cream, toppings, and my applesauce cake available for free. This year I could have offered him a hot dog. We had a great 11th annual Hello Summer party, thanks to my neighbor's hard work. She organized the whole thing for her senior project.

Pictured: My son tried out the Bubble Thing with amazing results. We'll have to try it again when it's not so windy.

Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. Romans 15:2 ESV

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Grand and Great

I always thought she was great. My role model. My hero. It became official when her oldest granddaughter (yours truly) had a baby 22 years ago. That's my Gramma. A great grandmother.

Happy birthday, Gramma!

Pictured: My grandparents at the family celebration tonight.

Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: Proverbs 31:28 ESV

Monday, June 15, 2009

Stateside Again

I tracked their progress online. So I knew their flight had landed. They borrowed someone's cell phone and let me know what shuttle they were catching. So my daughter and I waited. But when the big white van pulled up, my parents weren't in it. Not to worry, that van was on the way TO the airport. My parents were in another van.

I thank God for my parents' safe return from China, after teaching, networking, counseling, and more, in 12 cities in 7 weeks.

Pictured: My parents and my older daughter.

And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9 ESV

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Growing Up Together

I wish I had thought of it. My husband would have bought some, but we ran out of time. And so we went to my daughter's high school graduation without congratulatory flowers or balloons. But our next door neighbor presented her with a beautiful rose and card. Eleven years of friendship and counting. Next year it's her turn to graduate. I'll have to get her some flowers. Or bake her some sailor jack muffins.

We give thanks to God always for all of you, constantly mentioning you in our prayers, 1 Thessalonians 1:2 ESV

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Seeing Red

So far so good. There has been more laughing this week than crying. Seeing my third child graduate hasn't been too hard. It's something to celebrate. Saying good-bye in the fall is a different story.

Pictured: I had to rescue her graduation cap after the wind blew it away during a photo op on our porch. My older son has a setting on his camera to highlight one color--in this case, red.

So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us. 1 Thessalonians 2:8 ESV

Friday, June 12, 2009

100th Graduating Class

It was a night for numbers. Our older daughter was part of the 100th graduating class at Shelton High School. Our third high school graduation in four years. Five out of six of us were there. (We miss our oldest who is in California). Two out of four grandparents were present. Afterwards the waitress was a good sport. We shared an Oreo pie seven ways, strawberry crepes three ways, a milk shake three ways, and fries and French dip sandwich four ways. And we made some memories.

so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. Colossians 1:10 ESV

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Bring Them Back

Let the homecomings begin. My younger son made it back from Bellingham tonight. Thanks to my husband driving, my father-in-law supervising the packing and strapping (got rope and bungee cords?), and the use of my son's roommate's parents' van. Now for my parents to return from China and my older son to return from visiting a friend in California.

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

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Awards Night

Do the right things with the right motives, whether you get noticed or not. But every now and then you do get special recognition. My youngest won the third grade citizenship award tonight. My older daughter won that award in 8th grade when she was at the Christian school. I'm thankful for how God is working in and through them.

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, Colossians 3:23 ESV

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Color My World

I appreciate the colorful people in my life. Big and little. My husband who is game to try things with his second graders. Find a recipe for rainbow cookies? Grab some ingredients from home. Let the kids mix in food coloring. Bake and enjoy. Or my young friend who gathers flowers and arranges them while her older siblings are in class. They color my world happy.

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 1 Timothy 6:17 ESV

Monday, June 08, 2009

Nap Happy

Is this what aging looks like? You can't do everything you want to do. Or used to do. Sometimes I forget that I have limitations with my MS. Even during my up times. I can't go and go and go. Skip my naps. So after a full weekend I had to bow out of the all-day field trip with my third grader. Thankfully my older daughter was able to go. And I got a good nap.

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28 ESV

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Are you ready for this?

You could call it the dress rehearsal. The seniors wore their caps and gowns for the baccalaureate service at the high school this afternoon. I appreciated the student-led worship, the 2001 graduate who shared his story of losing himself and finding God, and the chance to celebrate with grads and their families. And I could have teared up when I saw that beautiful baby picture on the screen but I didn't. Now to get through graduation on Friday night.

Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:30-31 ESV

Saturday, June 06, 2009

First and Last Verses

I used to know the numbers. And could call out a favorite or two. In the old days of prayer meetings and Sunday night services.

We had a good hymn sing at the family reunion tonight. Just like we used to when Grammy D was with us. Too bad my mom isn't back from China and missed seeing her brother from Texas and her sister from Vancouver, BC.

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16 ESV

Friday, June 05, 2009

Last Full Cycle

I'm going to miss the weekly cycle. Look through the packet of papers on Monday. Find a blue and white uniform for Wednesday chapel day. Don't pack a lunch on Thursday because it's hot lunch. Study spelling words on Thursday night. But my favorite time is Thursday morning when we get up early to review the scripture passage. If my third grader can recite it on Thursday, she doesn't have to do it Friday. But today was the last Friday of the last full week of school. I wonder what the fourth grade routine will be like.

And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. Deuteronomy 6:7 ESV

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Chinese Opera Star?

I didn't sing. Not that I could if I wanted to. I just put on the costume and make-up, walked on stage, and raised my swords on cue. I forgot about this Taipei American School cultural experience until this photo surfaced.

Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! Psalm 95:2 ESV

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Party in the Park

It was a team effort. Minus my mother-in-law's help. She's the one known for her potato salad but it was her birthday lunch. So I did researched recipes and did the best I could.

My lemon dessert experiment didn't go so well. So I threw together an applesauce cake at the last minute. My youngest cleaned out the giant cooler. The girls made a banner. My husband marinated chicken and gathered everything we needed for a barbecue. Our older son helped haul supplies. We invited friends to join us. And it was a party in the park!

Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Romans 12:10 ESV

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Mr. Fix-it

She took her job seriously. Can I help you find something? I was looking for my husband in the hardware store. So she walked me down the aisles. Is that him? Is that your husband? There he is. I'll take that guy covered in spider webs and dust.

And bless my husband for going under the house to replace a broken outdoor faucet.

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, Colossians 3:23 ESV

Monday, June 01, 2009

Built with Love

It was nine months of labor. For my husband. And his dad came every other weekend. Thirty man hours a week. They don't call it sweat equity for nothing. Eight families built eight homes through the self-help building program. Today we celebrate 11 years in our beautiful home.

(For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God.) Hebrews 3:4 ESV