Monthly Archives: July 2007

For Your Listening Pleasure

I was wasting time yesterday on this old computer (procrastination runs deep in my family) & discovered a little juke box type thing that loads up your personal song picks. It’s supposed to come up on the site automatically, but for some reason it’s not working quite right for me yet. So for now, to hear the LAW jukebox, scroll down to that new little maroon thingy under the Cluster Map on the bottom right column. Click the far right where it says “launch”. That’s not how it’s supposed to work, but I just can’t justify wasting any more time trying to get it to work right for now. Maybe another time. (Editor’s note: for now, go here to hear the playlist. Milli VAnilli has since been removed, so to hear them, go here & scroll down.)

Come on, try it! When was the last time you heard a good Milli Vanilli song? I was thrilled to find them on them choice list! Although I was a bit dismayed to not find Allison Durham, Michael Sweet (the Christian version of Bon Jovi – “All This & Heaven Too” was a newlywed fav of ours), or Donny Osmond on the play list. Where’s the justice in this world when Milli Vanilli can have like eight songs to choose from & Donny only has the old “Little Bit Country; Little Bit Rock & Roll”? Come on, people, he had a few good hits in the late eighties! Why does he always bring on the snickers? He has a nice voice, smile, and all. Speaking of Michael Sweet, I do believe big sound in bands (big guitars, loud drums, big hair) are going to make a come back soon. You watch.

Anyway, gotta go to the maroon “launch” for a treat! Happy listening;)


PS – Never having been a rebellious or “foolish” teen, there were the college/Frey years where even I listened to the pop station & bought a few silly tapes: Paula Abul, Bryan Adams, & yes, I even paid some of my hard earned cash for that Milli Vanilli tape. And liked it. Note to self: Cut ’em (your kids) some slack – they’ll be alright! I tend toward the uptight, so will need to remember this as my own come into the teen years.

New Neighbors Joining the Compound

This is not my news to tell really, but everyone that knows me knows I can’t keep good news a secret. So, if you tell me something that’s good news, you better not want me to keep it quiet because I can’t!

My brother & sister-in-law sold their house!! It’s been on the market about a year & we’ve been praying for God’s perfect timing on it. Their sixth baby is due the end of this month & they really need more space. “The pretty blue house” is soon to belong to another little family. That means my brother & family will be moving in next door with my mom until they get a new house built.

Do you have any idea how excited my kids are to have their five (soon to be six) cousins living next door for the next year or so? Sweet memories are a comin’! And we are praising the Lord with them & looking forward to all the fun times ahead.

Meet a Bloggy Friend of Mine…

If you’ve never met Jeana from “Days to Come“, try hopping over to her blog someday. She has a great way with words & capturing those precious or funny moments. She’s on a roll right now; had me laughing out loud! Check out a few of my recent favorites…

Family Vacationing Memories
Sweet Moments with the Little Ones
Sweet Thoughts on the Love of Your Life

We’ve Got a Ten Year Old in the House!

Nate turned ten last night at 7:07. (See pictures of the birthday bash in Flickr to the right.) In a nutshell, we made smores in lieu of a cake, we sang silly camp songs, we had lots of glow in the dark – Nate discovered what happens when you put a glow stick in the fire & what it looks like on your hands & mouth, etc. – & light ups galore, we watched Nate open cool gifts by lantern light, we stayed up late after “bedding down for the night” listening to girls’ giggles & boys’ fake toot noises to get them to giggle (as if they needed any reason!). In the morning Dear Mother awoke early to “fix breakfast” (those little boxes of cereal). Uncle Luke got insensed at the thought, but ate a few boxes & even did the dishes!

More highlights…
Sam adored having Nate in his tent with him all night. Sam adores Nate!
Mom freaked out at hearing a large animal of some kind wander through the tents in the middle of the night, but was too lazy (scared) to stand up, put on the old glasses & see what it was – raccoon or deer?
Grandma brought out the silly spectacles for all to try on, be silly, & get the spotlight for a while.
Neighbors shared funny camp songs & even a “scary story” was told with the flashlight on the face. Grandma warned of upcoming nightmares & all the little ones in attendance, so Luke reluctantly put the flashlight away.
Callie “ran away” a few times with several worried cousins reporting, only to be spotted soon afterward due to the “accidental” light up thingy showing us all where she was.
Noah (the two year old) actually had a pretty good night’s sleep! He slept through all the giggles & noises.
Nate woke up early & stoked the fire to 6 foot high flames before Mom & Pop came out of the tent. (Luke was watching – and we wonder where Aliyah comes from.)
The cats loved Luke’s tent. He hates our cats, so naturally they clawed at his tent through the night in spite of his throwing them by the tail into the corn fields.

Oh, the memories…

I shared before how we picked Nate’s name (see this post), but I wanted to save his song until his birthday. This song is to the tune “Warrior” by Caedmon’s Call (click song number ten – how appropriate – to hear it). Nate loved this song when it first came out – he was four – so that’s the one I chose to write words to for him…

Nate speaks with boldness.
Nathan speaks with confidence.
Nate can speak with courage
because he’s grounded in God’s Word.

Nathan is a gift from God.
God has also gifted him.
Even facing death & kings,
he stands alone & unashamed, for

Nate speaks with boldness.
Nathan speaks with confidence.
Nate can speak with courage
because he’s grounded in God’s Word.

That’s our prayer for you, Nate. As you grow physically, we pray you grow stronger spiritually as well to where you are able, if asked, to stand alone & confidently as Nathan the prophet did confronting King David & Daniel did before King Neb. Both of these men were confidently able to guide kings, even at the risk of their own life, because of their wisdom from above. The Bible doesn’t tell us much about the prophet Nathan, but it looks like he was one of David’s greatest spiritual advisers & David loved him enough, even after what you could mildly call a loving confrontation, he named one of his sons after him!

May you have their wisdom, boldness, faith, & spiritual discernment as you grow, dear Nathan. We love you & and are so proud of you!

Has It Been a Month Already!?!

This is a quick check in before I forget to write down all that’s happened this month. There is coming another sabbatical for about two or three more weeks, but I thought I’d better get a few things down before they slip away.

First of all, today is Nate’s tenth birthday, so in celebration, we’re having a neighborhood camp out tonight. Wish us luck!! The kids & three of us fortunate adults will be out in the tents after an evening of glow bracelets, LED flashing twirly-gigs, flashlight tag, lighting bug collecting, & of course campfire songs & smores. Keith & I are so far off our sleep schedule anyway…we may be up all night tonight on this one.

Anders had a “re-birth day” yesterday!! He decided to ask Jesus into his life to take away his sins. All week he had been at VBS with Grandma talking about the wordless book. Each day highlighted a color – gold for heaven & God’s wonderful plan, black for our sin & we all have it, red for the blood of Jesus which takes away our sin, white for the clean heart we get when we trust Him to take away our sin, & green for growing in Christ by reading our Bible, praying, going to church, etc. He had been asking questions & processing things for a few months now, so we were praying for him & the timing, etc. Late Saturday morning, while Callie & I were doing our hair, he came into the bathroom to sit & chat with us as he often does. He started talking about sin out of the blue. We talked about how Jesus died to take it away & if Anders had ever sinned, asked Jesus to take his away, etc. He definitely understood all about sin & that he was a sinner. He also was sure he had never asked Jesus to take his away, but he wanted to. I told him how he could whenever he felt ready – he didn’t have to wait to be older or anything, but Daddy & I would love to pray with him whenever. He said he wanted to now. Keith was in the next room, so we sat on the floor together & told Anders the stories of how we had asked Jesus when we were about his age (Callie & I; Keith was a little older). He said he wanted Daddy to pray for him. Keith explained how we could pray with him, but only Anders could ask Jesus into Anders’ heart. So he did!! It was a precious moment! I love being there to hear my child’s first humble steps to the Lord. It is every bit as beautiful for me as their first birth. …The first steps on their spiritual journey to know God & make Him known. He has been spending the weekend telling everybody that he asked Jesus into his heart.

How do you top that!? But there are other memorable moments from the past month…

We gave away three of our four little kitties. It wasn’t hard. In fact, it was fun to see the joy on the little girls’ faces as they carried away their new kittens. The hardest part has been watching Beauty look for & cry a bit over her lost kittens. I wasn’t expecting that. But we kept our favorite – Rascal. He’s the dark tiger-striped one. Nate calls him Tiger, so he has two names at this point.

Nate & I had a great time in DC for the last week in June. It was loads of fun to spend time with the two nieces! During the day, Nate & I hit the town. We saw a lot! Nate was a trooper about all the walking. I broke down & got us bus tickets the last tour day we were out to go around to all the last things we hadn’t seen yet that required more walking – Arlington Cemetery, the White House, etc. We toured the Capital. We took in the Smithsonian Museums. We visited the house Lincoln died in (Ford’s Theatre was closed up for the month so unavailable to tour). We took the subway lots & Nate got used to & even started to like the long escalators. My brother took us all to a Korean BBQ restaurant. We swam in their backyard pool at night. We just had an all around good time! It was good to get re-connected with my boy again. Just the two of us!

This last week has been the remodeling week! The kids’ rooms have been in serious need of revamping. The little room (Grandpa Ed’s) has been cars, trucks & things that go in primary colors since we moved to the farm seven years ago. At the time, Nate was big time into firetrucks & that seemed generic enough to last us through the younger years. It has held us in good stead, but after two repair jobs & the bedding getting threadbare, it was time to change it up a bit. Nate has loved the Magic Tree House books for years & Callie is now getting into them big time. Anders doesn’t know much about them yet, but how can you go wrong with a tree house theme? Especially in a tiny room with a bunk bed? So, that’s what we did. It now looks like the room is a tree & the bunks are the clubhouse. We got them a canvas tent-like thing to put up, but it’s not up yet. That’s really the “piece de resistance” for the room, so the goal is to get that up next week. It has pockets on either side to put books & toys in. Thus we are NOT going to hook it up from the ceiling!! We are working on some kind of frame to put on the bunks & then slide the tent onto. There’s even buttons sewn into the inside of the tent so you can string lights around the inside. We just have to decide which kind of lights – white Christmas lights, colored lights, or party lights of some kind? So there’s still more decisions to make & more fun in the works there.

The other room (Serena’s room), has been pink. When we moved in, I was pregnant with Callie, & after adding battenberg lace curtains & pink & sage quilted bedding, I liked it. But through the years, the walls have cracked, the quilt is old, & with two boys, we want that to be where both boys end up. (Right now, Anders is the swing guy. He likes the bottom bunk for now & Callie likes the company. A year or so from now, though, the boys will both be able to have the bigger room without messing with stuff.) We went with a Cabela’s theme – we all love camping & outdoors. One of my brothers jokingly asked if we were going to put a gun rack up & wouldn’t you know, the first thing Nate asked when he set foot in the finished room was if he could put nails up above the doorway to display his Kentucky rifle like Pa from Little House! Keith has given him the okay, but the nails aren’t up there yet. We went with this decor partly because Nate likes to sleep on the floor anyway – might as well slap a sleeping bag down there & make it part of the motif! I’m thinking of putting one or both of our Christmas trees in the corner to add some fun to the room. Haven’t done it yet. Keith & I both agree the little cabin room has gone from our least favorite room to our favorite! Next year, Nate can take the laptop up & do some of his lessons during the day on his bed to get away & have quiet. Shoot, Keith will probably do that, too on Saturdays when he has to study! So, the project was a success. SO glad it’s behind me!!!

To see pictures of any of this, see the Flickr strip to the right. Sorry, but I put the pictures in backwards again. So, the “before” & “after” pictures have the “after” before the “before”. Oops.

Oh, a few more things from the month before I close it up for another longer break…

The Fourth of July was fun at my brother’s. The kids paraded around the neighborhood in their red, white & blue after our annual colored pancake breakfast. For those of you who don’t know, our family has a tradition of making colored pancakes for breakfast to celebrate the Fourth. Kind of “fireworks on a plate”. Our neighbors/ Aunt & Uncle also treated us to a backyard show the night before. It was great watching fireworks over our big red barn. We plopped down in the middle of our west acre to enjoy the show. Then on the actual night of the Fourth, we got to enjoy fireworks again with our church family. There was a surprisingly good turnout after a huge downpour at 8 o’clock.

Keith & I finished the first season of “Lost” last night. What a fun show!! I can’t remember a show that both Keith & I have ever enjoyed like this. The best part is, we are behind, so we watch it on DVD at our leisure. I have to say, that is some great writing. I like to know what’s coming, so watched the season finale of season three. It helps me make sense of what’s happening back in season one as well as not freak out. I normally can’t stand mystery & shows with freaky music. But this one I love! Keith, on the other hand, does not want to know anything ahead of time. He doesn’t let me tell him anything I know, nor does he stay in the room whenever people discuss “Lost” for fear he hear something. We are enjoying this show & looking forward to season two for date nights the rest of this year.

And lastly, a huge praise – Keith finished the history review assignment last night!! He has been working on writing up reviews for 50 history lessons at the rate of 2-3 per day since school has been out. The desktop gave up the ghost right after I got back from DC, so we are in laptop only mode at the moment. The school said they will send us a new one – the problem is all the info on that hard drive I want to keep. Keith has a plan to retrieve it all on the 20th of this month, so I am using this time to do other things. This has been a good thing to do anyway. I will feel better when my stuff is retrieved from that hard drive, though. There’s Club stuff, family pix, etc. Mid August, we will be working on setting up the now two school computers (since both Nate & Callie are enrolled in OHVA), as well as the laptop in the study room. We will have a veritable computer lab at our house. I’ll let Keith get that all rigged up.

Better end here – time to put up the tent & stoke the campfire! I’ll post pictures in Flickr of the birthday bash. Until next time!!