Monthly Archives: May 2008

Brother Andrew Is 80!

We give our children names that have a good solid meaning, Bible characters to emulate, and at least one modern Christian hero to look up to: Nate Saint (a pilot like our Nate’s daddy, grandpa, & great-grandpa), Grandma Esther W along with the nod to Corrie Ten Boom with “Callie” (We love Corrie, but just couldn’t do the whole “Cornelia” thing to our sweet little pink bundle! I think she’ll thank us as she gets older.), and Brother Andrew as well as 6 Williams – Tyndale, Carey, Wilberforce, Gaither, Gothard, & Bright – William is rather loaded. We love George Mueller & Dietrich Bonhoeffer, too, but haven’t figured out a subtle way to use those names for this next little guy yet. George Deitrich just doesn’t cut it. Any ideas?

Brother Andrew turns 80 this month. He is one of the modern heroes of the faith we named our second boy after. If you haven’t read about him much, don’t be embarrassed. He’s not super well known because his ministry is pretty underground. The book God’s Smuggler is his story. I was actually surprised to find his picture on line. More seems to come out on him through the years. His life would make an excellent movie some day. Looking forward to hearing all that God has done through him & wishing him a day of joy on his birthday. Happy birthday, Brother Andrew! God bless you & the ministry you have begun.

Brother Andrew with Arafat


Calligraphy & The Weekend

Callie’s now into writing in Chinese. She loved her calligraphy lessons…

We had a big weekend: sibling class at the hospital, Grandma’s 90th birthday bash, Callie’s baptism, Grandma in from MN, cousins gallore. For a few pix, see Flickr to the left.


A Giant of Life

Could China become the new Christian nation that blesses the world? Let’s pray so…

Why China? Why Now? by Open Doors

You can sign up to receive a daily prayer email for China as they countdown to the Olympics. This is a great way for the kids to join in on the movement as they look forward to the Olympics. Go here to get the prayer update.


I Can’t Even Imagine

I hate to post stuff everyone else is talking about & hesitate to put this up, but my heart is so heavy for them! I can’t stop thinking & praying for them. I love this guy! He wrote songs for our wedding, songs for our life, we met him backstage soon after Dad died, he’s just a great guy! That marriage conference we went to last weekend was in Franklin, TN & we were talking talking about all the songwriters that lived there. My brother put it best with SCC’s song, Carry You to Jesus.

Lift this brother & family up with me, will you?

To see a touching video of Steven Curtis with Maria taken a couple months ago, etc. click here.


Preschool Care Packages

A bloggy friend of mine was talking about “care package” ideas for her mother to send the kids, especially the littles, so they would have educational things to do when the olders were working. We have so enjoyed these packages through the years. It’s been a great way for Grandma (several states away) to be involved, and for our littles to have quality educational materials to play with through the years. Here’s a list of those things that have stood the test of time & been most enjoyed…

counting bears or bugs (the ones where you can make patterns with, sort, etc.), – you’d be surprised at how much you can teach with these!

nice musical instruments (tambourine, rhythm sticks, shaker eggs or homemade ones with various seed or beans or corn, jingle bell anything, slide whistles, kazoo, harmonica, etc.),

simple costumes, or accessories to costumes,

gardening equipment (gloves, little tools, watering can, etc.),

tepee or castle to read in (This company used to have a cheap tepee too, keep an eye out for its return),

the Identiflyer,

nice puzzles,

Faerie Tale Theatre ( a great collection of stories, but I got this collection a few years ago for 35$. I can’t find it that cheap now! Keep an eye out on ebay I guess.),

flannel board & or chalk board, felt stuff to put on felt board (homemade is easy, cheap & fun – we’ve made shapes, people with clothes, etc. seasonal fun like a tree with little multicolored leaves to put on, pumpkins, snowman parts, flowers, etc. to teach seasons – felt comes 10-25 cents a sheet – just takes time to make),

lacing beads or cards,

cheap puppets & stage,

magnetic letters (lower case please – harder to find & more expensive maybe, but best for learning – they are going to use lower case a whole lot more than capitals in life!)

And of course books. I like to buy the ones that are more interactive because they’re fun & the library generally doesn’t get those kinds of books (The Jolly Postman type, lift the flap, pop-up, or scratch & sniff, touch & feel, etc.) or noisy books like Buzz, Buzz, Busy Bees where the batteries are dead in the library versions!

I’ll probably add to this list later as my brain gets going. Also, a theme for the week sure helps a LOT for me to get excited about preschool learning as well as Grandma having a direction to go in buying & sending packages. We’ve had a lot of fun with this through the years. Another day I’ll try to post the themes for the year. After doing that for eight years, we pretty much came up with a set schedule for themes that worked well & ended up being predictable every year. For those interested, stay tuned for more info.


Homemaking A-Z Meme Going Around

Okay, I guess I’ll play. My sister-in-law & cousin are doing this one, so I’ll join in. Feel free to join us!

Aprons – Y/N? If Y, what does your favorite look like? I have quite a few, but don’t use them.
Baking – Favorite thing to bake – I LOVE to bake, but try to limit it due to sweet intake. Cookies, bread (sweet & loaf), cakes. See what I mean?
Clothesline – Y/N? Yep. Love it especially for blankets, sheets & towels.
Donuts – Have you ever made donuts? Oh, yeah. The best! The kids don’t remember it though, so I probably should do that one of these days.
Every day – One homemaking thing you do every day – tidy up the rooms. Preferably before dinner.
Freezer – Do you have a separate deep freeze? Definitely. Couldn’t make it without one at this point.
Garbage Disposal – Y/N? Absolutely no. Can’t stand them.
Handbook – What is your favorite homemaking resource? Our Fields family cookbook.
Ironing – Love it or hate it? Don’t love it, but do it most mornings because our family loves cotton clothes.
Junk drawer – Y/N? K & I each have one. Plus a junk garage & attic.
Kitchen – Color and decorating. Blueberries & plaid with a gingerbread trim. Love it!!
Love – What is your favorite part of homemaking? The fresh clean smell & feeling in the spring after deep cleaning, breezy open windows & fresh cut wildflowers in the summer, the well stocked pantry in the fall & feeling of bounty, putting the winter decorations up together & rocking by the fireplace when it’s done.
Mop – Y/N? Swiffer only.
Nylons – Wash by hand or in the washing machine? Haven’t worn those for a decade, but used to be a washing machine thing. Of course being “delicate”, I’d throw them in an old pillowcase & knot it before washing.
Oven – Do you use the window or open the oven to check? Both. Probably peek in more, though.
Pizza – What do you put on yours? Hawaiian, please. The kids & I love pineapple & K does Pepperoni, so we almost always go half-sies. K makes out like a bandit!
Quiet – What do you do during the day when you get a quiet moment? Mull over Club or school stuff, make lists, play on the computer, or load up my iPod with talk radio.
Recipe card box – Yep. Still have the one my extended family gave me as a shower gift fourteen years ago – blue plastic. Still works like new.
Style- What style is your house? Nineteenth century farm, white with green shutters & all. Love it!
Tablecloths and napkins – Y/N? A must. Although we use place mats, not tablecloth. But napkins – each meal.
Under the kitchen sink – Organized or toxic wasteland? Organized. Grandma got me started on that.
Vacuum – How many times per week? Once a month. We don’t wear shoes in the house & it really doesn’t get dirty. Except around the edges in the kitchen. When I start noticing crumblies around there, we know it’s time to drag out the old sweeper.
Wash – How many loads of laundry do you do per week? Mondays & Thursdays are usually wash days. Average of about four loads each time. So I guess that makes eight.
X’s – Do you keep a daily list of things to do that you cross off? I always have a stack of lists going on. One for groceries, one for things to do around the house for the season, one for the day, one for the week, one for Club, one for… well, you get the picture. I am my father’s child.
Yard – Y/N? I usually do the flower beds & K does the lawn. When a baby’s on the way, the flowerbeds don’t happen. He dreams of training up his boys to take the lawn over for him real soon!
Zzz’s – What is your last homemaking task for the day before going to bed? Folding laundry. I save that to sit & chat with Hubby, then the kids & I have a “clothes party” the next morning to get them all in the drawers. It’s all in what you name it. (The kids won’t touch egg SALAD sandwiches, but love “Easter egg sandwiches”.)


A Weekend to Remember

Oh, what a beautiful weekend! (must be sung to the Oklahoma song) We had such a great time in Nashville. The Weekend to Remember retreat gets a five star rating from us, especially if you’ve been married more than ten years. (Keith & I weren’t expecting to hear anything new & we didn’t.) We had a marriage & family counseling class in seminary together, went through top ‘o the line premarital counseling with Uncle Tim (I think we were about the last of the pre-married he counseled before moving up to bigger & better things.), we’ve attended/read Gary Smalley stuff over the years, & we’ve always felt we had a pretty great marriage. But every marriage should take time out for a “tune-up” every once in a while. And this weekend was a well timed reminder of what a precious gift our great marriage is. We love the kids & all, but time just the two of us – a whole three days & three nights just us again – hasn’t happened for ten years & was a wonderful taste of the fun years to come when we get to the “empty nester” stage!

I think the best part was being a seven hour drive away, honestly. We so enjoyed just bumping along talking uninterrupted, traveling without having to think ahead packing wise for anybody but myself, eating where, what & when we wanted, & listening to NOTHING for long stretches of time!! We slept in & still had time to spare getting places! We never touched a computer, TV, etc. all weekend. If we wanted to listen to tacky 80’s music full blast, we did without worrying about polluting the kids’ minds. 🙂 So fun!! Life was good. And it looks a whole lot better back home now, too.

Yesterday was a bit of a walk down memory lane for us. We renewed our vows for the first time since our wedding. (That has always been my most special memory – gazing into his eyes & somehow feeling God make us one miraculously. It was pretty awesome the second time around, too!) We ran into some fellow Liberty folks (where we met). We drove around Mammoth Cave area for awhile – took the kids & camped down there four years ago – great memories. And on top of all that, we ate at Krispy Creme for breakfast (always reminds us of a favorite prof. Elmer Towns – was there a class period he didn’t mention KC?) & Jack in the Box (great Hawaii memories there) for lunch.

A huge shout out to Mom for entertaining the kiddos while we were away. They had quite a time together from what we hear. All it takes is letting them stay up all hours, hotdogs, & untimed computer/TV time & they are in Heaven. Hope they didn’t drive you too crazy, Mom. Thanks for loving on them!! I think the worst crisis was one of them wearing flip flops to church because he couldn’t find his church shoes – guess which one? I’d say they did pretty good!


China

Yesterday was a fun day. Nate volunteered to teach history to Callie for the first time. 🙂 That was a hoot to listen in on!

She is starting a unit on China for the next couple weeks. We had to pull out the chopsticks & fortune cookies, & of course had stir fry & rice for dinner, so used the celadon chopstick holders from Korea & Callie dressed in her finest silk.

Next week, we get to pull out the calligraphy set. She is so psyched! I’ll post her attempts next week.


Dottie Rambo

This one is mostly for my mom & little brothers. Dottie Rambo went to be with the Lord Sunday in a bus accident & it just got me thinking about all those kiddie musicals we performed over the years under Mom’s direction. Since we don’t have any on DVD or YouTube, thought I’d borrow a clip from a Pioneer group who did Down By the Creek Bank to send us down memory lane. In honor of a really wonderful writer, both for children & adults (she wrote “We Shall Behold Him“, too.)…

Thanks going out to Siggy for passing this info on. I probably wouldn’t have heard it otherwise.


Plan B

So we didn’t make it to Adena or the Serpent Mounds. But it was a great day yesterday!! Friday night, Callie & I stayed up most of the night with her tooth hurting (why do these things always happen on Friday nights?), so Saturday turned out to be a not-so-great day to drive six hours round trip. We gals ended up at the dentist’s office Saturday morning resulting in Callie’s tooth feeling much better & Keith getting the lawn mowed. Good thing, too. The dandelions were up to about 8 inches taller than the grass & with rain forecast for most of the coming week, it was getting to be a desperate situation. Callie & I got to cuddle for a sweet nap in the afternoon & then we went to my brother & SIL’s for dinner with a missionary friend, Jim Arnold. Good times.

Plan B for Mother’s Day turned out to be wonderfully fun. Having lived within an hour of President Harding’s home for all but about six years of my life, it is ridiculous that I’ve never toured there. One of Keith’s perks to being a part of all these clubs this last year is a family membership to any & all Ohio Historical sites allowing us free admission. So, with the baby coming smack dab in the middle of the summer, we plan to take advantage of our membership & take day trips around to these historical sites we’ve had on the back burner to visit, the Harding Home being one of them. I had actually planned to go with the kids some Saturday since Keith’s been through with his History gang several times already, but it was wonderful going all together. The kids were great and we had our own personal tour guide who really knew her stuff.

Highlights…

– Getting to hear President Harding’s voice on his victrola as his campaign record was played for us in his library. He sold these records containing his plan for “return to normalcy” (don’t you love his wordage?) after The War on one side, with some tunes of the times on the other. The artists volunteered their songs because all proceeds went to the Red Cross relief effort to help Europe rebuild after WWI. Pretty ingenious!!
– Having Anders ask questions like, “Was he a red coat or a blue coat?” & “Where are their goldfish?”, raising his hand ever so sweetly for each one.
– Callie raising her hand & then asking if the tour was over. She was tired.
– Nate noticing the buckeye tree in the front yard.
– The kids listening intently as the guide told about the “haunted clock” in the front room. Nate kept telling the two littles there’s no such thing as ghosts & Anders kept insisting he’d seen one before. (See this post for more on Anders & ghosts.)
– Finding a sundial, although it was raining. We’ll have to come back & check it out in action. We’ve been looking for one since Callie had that in a science lesson early in the year.

(Harding on his front porch in a 1920 speech.)

Most of what I’d heard about the Hardings was rather negative through the years. The tour guide gave us the good stuff which was nice to hear. He reduced taxed by 25% in his two & a half years. Pretty impressive! They didn’t have an inaugural ball because they strongly felt it was not right to use taxpayer’s money on that kind of frivolity. They had no children, so 98% of the Hardings’ things are still in the house – the most we have of any president. We had heard a few rumors locally that were cleared up for us today, one being that the real reason he got the women’s vote was because he was the only person on the ballot who supported the suffrage movement. The rumors that he won because it was the first time women had the right to vote & he was so handsome had always been suspicious to me. In my book, he’s no looker! Anyway, I guess there were seven men on the ballot & he won with 60% of the vote, so he was pretty popular. He was the fourth & last to run a front porch campaign. (I always thought he was the only one.) We finished the tour with a quick romp around the Memorial.

All in all, I’m psyched for the weekend coming up. We are going to tour the Hermitage on Friday morning. That will make the 5th presidential home we will have toured (Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Harding & Jackson). That’s an interesting mix there on that list, huh? One of these days, we need to stop & see Reagan’s childhood home in Illinois. Oh, & one of the other seven Ohio Presidents’ homes.