Monday, June 29, 2009

Who do I look like?

Here's my Mom at six months.

The littlest one on the left is my Dad around six months.

Here's me doing my newest thing - I'm almost six months!

What do you think?

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Father's Day on the Farm

Over Father's Day weekend, we got to go down to the farm to visit and help plant. It was such a nice time! Alaina got to see Mimi, Papi and some of the Aunts and Uncles.

We're so glad you were up, Renee! Alaina just soaked up all the attention.

Alaina thought Papi was pretty interesting to watch, and I think he was impressed by her little chunker legs! We girls did get out to the farm for a couple of round of planting with the menfolk, so we got to ride in the big tractor! I didn't have my camera with me. :-(

All the adults were well entertained with Alaina's newest antics - getting on her hands and knees and putting her toes in her mouth. She makes it look so easy!

Mimi and Alaina really got some good bonding time. It took Baby a little while to warm up, but by the second day she was giving her Grandma the biggest smiles!

Fresh toes, anyone?

Getting in some girl talk with her Auntie.

Somebody took pictures of his girls giving him his first Father's Day card! Alaina loves her Daddy so much and thinks he's a wonderful Daddy! Her Mommy agrees. ;-)

Happy Father's Day to all our wonderful Dads! We love you!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Meditations: A Divine Surprise

Recently I was reading in the book of John, going very slowly. I've been taking things in bite sized pieces so I can really slow down and see what's there. Sometimes I've read through a paragraph until something hits me. Sometimes I've simply meditated on one verse. It's been challenging and encouraging.

A while back, I came across this verse.

Jesus knew that the Father had given him authority over everything and that he had come from God and would return to God.

That got me thinking. What would I do if all authority had been given into my hands? If I could fix anything, change anything? If I knew that I had that kind of power? The verse said that Jesus knew that he had come from God. What if I could know, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that I had been sent as God's messenger and that my words were directly from God? (In all honesty, the first thing that popped into my mind had something to do with public speaking or writing a book.) What if I also knew that my time was limited. Soon I would be returning to God. What would I do?

What about you? What would you do?

Then I read what Jesus did. He got up, got into his grubby work clothes and did the ancient equivalent of scrubbing toilets.

Jesus knew that the Father had given him authority over everything and that he had come from God and would return to God. So he got up from the table, took off his robe, wrapped a towel around his waist, and poured water into a basin. Then he began to wash the disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel he had around him.

Since I didn't remember that it was coming, his action struck me with the same force of surprise that it must have had for his disciples. Knowing that he had all authority and all truth and that his time was limited . . . he served. He loved. He gave of himself in this most humble way. What a gracious, holy and beautiful God we have!

What a reminder this was to me of what is truly important. I can do and know all sorts of things, as it says in 1Cor. 13, but if I don't have love, it's all for nothing. And how different God's love is from the "what will it do for me?" love we see around us - and inside us - everyday.

For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many. - Mark 10:45

Our definition of an important job usually amounts to "Something that will be seen by many people". God's definition of an important job is something closer to "Something done out of love for God through the power of Christ". How incredible to know that He has given me the opportunity to copy Christ in loving and giving every single day!

There's something to think about the next time you find yourself scrubbing toilets. :-)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Quote of the Week: Home's Purpose

The primary purpose of a home is to reflect and to distribute the love of Christ. Anything that usurps that is idolatrous. - Ravi Zacharias

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

ICHE Convention

Well, we had a great time at the State Convention! I didn't take many pictures, but here's what I have:

Alaina did extremely well, although she was completely overwhelmed for at least the first day. She got to meet lots of new friends and was well entertained at all times. Here she is with her new friend Amber Marie. She spent most of her time with Amber teaching her how to spit. So much for lady-like! I guess that comes later. ;-)

Between sessions, we got to visit with Nanna at "The Brain". The workshops were wonderful! You can read some of my notes at . We got the MP3s, and I can't wait to dig in! There were so many things I didn't get to hear that I wanted to.

Could it be that Kyle looks just a bit tired? I wonder why that could be?

Now you know! It's hard work pushing your lazy wife around all the time! (Auntie Kay, I missed you. The stroller was wonderful!) Actually, he did help out quite a bit with all the clean up. We both came home tired but recharged from all the encouragement and wonderful fellowship!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bathing Beauty

Somebody has gotten too big for the bathroom sink!

Bath continues to be an exercise for our courage - sometimes Mom's as well as Baby's! Two weeks ago we had just gotten through with a bath that took a little while than longer. Mommy was so thankful to finally get Baby onto her changing table.

She started to put on Baby's clothes, then remembered that she hadn't put on any lotion. She grabbed the pink bottle and started to lotion Baby up. Funny thing was, the lotion smelled funny and didn't feel quite right to Mommy. "Can lotion get too old?" Mommy wondered.

A closer investigation of the bottle revealed that, although it looks just like the lotion bottle, it's actually moisturizing baby wash! Back into the bath for poor Baby. Just when we thought it was over!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Quote of the Week: Subsidization

The subsidization of institutions rather than of people has lead to an indiscriminate subsidization of all activities appropriate to such institutions, rather than of the activities appropriate for the state to subsidize. - Milton Friedman

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Catching Up: Guy's Weekend

A couple weeks ago a bunch of friends came down for the weekend, and we had quite the time!

The Nitchfield parking lot. ;-)

The guys helped us out with a lot of stuff while they were here, and somehow tree removal sneaked onto the agenda.

This time it was a biggie!

I snapped a few pictures, then hid in the house.

The Crew: Kyle & Alaina, Nate, Jacob B., Jason H. and Jason S.

Alaina sneaks into the food line, hoping to get some potato chips before her mom notices.

Jason S. and Jacob constructing a potato gun. It should have tipped me off when the guys came back from the grocery store with two bottles of hairspray!

Testing, testing. Later that evening we had quite a fun time with various kinds of homemade noise makers. Why would you watch the corn grow when you can listen for the potato to land?

Alaina enjoying avuncular attention. (I love that word!)

The guys and their meat. Kyle knows how to feed his friends - nothing like a little hickory smoked beef for a hungry crew!

What happens when you say "look hungry!". Thanks guys for all your help and for a very fun weekend!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Quote of the Week: Literary Taste

If you have formed . . . literary taste . . . your life will be one long ecstasy of denying that they world is a dull place. - Arnold Bennett

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Look who's . . .

. . . five months old today!

My, are we having fun with this little one! She is at such a fun stage, so happy and responsive.

Yes, these are pictures of her first whale spout.

On another note Mom and Dad are excited about hearing these guys . . .

. . . at the ICHE State Convention! Hope to see many of you there!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Catching Up: My First Mother's Day

A masterpiece of music or art. A civilization. A history-changing book, or discovery, or idea. How amazing to think that all the most lasting, significant things I can think of have the longevity of a lightning bolt when compared to the eternal nature of a human being.

What an honor it is, then, to be used by God to create life, and to have the opportunity to guide someone towards a fruitful present and an exciting eternity!

The privilege of being a Mother is not one I take for granted, as I think of the beautiful women I know who would like to celebrate mother's day with a baby of their own, but for one reason or another cannot at this time. May the Lord fulfill your heart's desire, or give you something even better!

For Mother's Day, I got a card from Alaina, and the Monday afterwards she took me out to Red Lobster for some seafood . . .

. . . with Daddy's help, of course.

Alaina kept herself busy either with her toys or looking at Daddy's food, so her parents did most of the talking.

I'm so thankful to the Father for the sweet people he has brought into my life!