Monthly Archives: August 2010

Vacation Highlights 2010

Favorite Memories from our time at the Dells:
– going to Noah’s Ark Water Park, the largest in the USA.
– seeing the Tommy Bartlett Water Show. Grandma & Pa Jensen had told Isabelle 30 years ago it was a “must see”. Well, we did it! Highlight: the married couple up on the insanely high poles.
– taking the Duck Boat tour around the river.
– taking the river boat two hour tour; the two hour tour. A cool stop off was a t Witch’s Gulch where we “hiked” back in a ways – gorgeous! Looked a lot like Hocking Hills. We also made a stop at an island where we saw a dog jump between two VERY high land forms just like some inventor made his son do like 13 times to prove he had made a camera fast enough to catch the image of his son between the two forms. Insane!
The resort – awesome!!! They had four campfire rings each night going for “campers” to roast smores, etc. which made for a heavenly smell. They had a mini water park there for the kids to enjoy & played a movie on the big screen so families could gather in the bean bag chairs & rockers, enjoy movies together like Toy Story 2 & Finding Nemo, complete with free popcorn! Really fun.
– Ordering the Big Kahuna from the Pizza Pub which got delivered straight to our room one night! HUGE. We actually had a few pieces left over. It was excellent!
– Visiting with Larry & Kathy & girls on the way home there in Onalaska & enjoying ice cream cake at DQ for Nate’s 13th birthday. He chose Spiderman. : ] Uncle Glenn got to join us as well!
Favorite Memories from our time in MN:
– morning walks around the Lake, just Keith & me. : ] (18 plus miles during this visit)
– taking the kids to Beaver Lake to swim a few times. Perfect!!
– visiting Grandma Jensen’s sister Great Aunt Esther. She’s not Grandma, but there are sure ways she reminds me of her. :_]
– Uncle Dave coming over for a visit & eating Grandma Jensen’s last apple pie together.
– the lil Woody & Bullseye search!
– Jack’s obsession with the “woody shoes”: little wooden shoes Isabelle has had in her corner cabinet as far back as one can remember, but JACK spotted them & wore them pretty much the whole time. They were shoes Neil’s grandmother had brought back from her trip to Denmark for Neil when he was Jack’s age!! They definitely got loved on this trip!
– Jack’s reaction to his Woody gifts – by far the most excited we’ve every seen any of our children get.
– my new shoes!! I’m loving my Easy Spirits!!! Are those old people shoes? Oh, well. I don’t care. I finally threw out the silly pair I had after getting a blister on my right pinky toe, then trashing the blister so bad the next day’s walk I ended up walking the last half (3-4 miles!!) barefoot. I’m now an Easy Spirit woman all the way.
– viisting Bob & Lisa Wayne’s place. Their place was hit by a tornado four weeks before – it was incredible!! I’ve never seen the likes so soon after. Memorable!
– going to Burger King’s playland for Jack’s 2nd birthday.
– taking in the Ellendale Days complete with a good old fashioned Minnesotan parade. If you’ve not seen one, you’re missing out: each float throws all kinds of goodies out at you while they pass. You leave with everything from cartons of milk, rulers, bags of honey roasted sunflower seeds, tootsie rolls GALORE, hand lotion, stickers, beaded necklaces, ice pops & much more in between!! It’s an event!
– going by silly names on the way home just to see what reactions we could get from people when we called our children Floyd, Maude, Lonnie & Bing at the Git & Go. Oh, and we’re Herman & Hazel.

Well, that sums up a few memories for posterity. Until next time!


Peace = “Proving that you care more about others than winning an argument.”

Romans 14:19
“So let us do all we can to live in peace. And let us work hard to build each other up.”

What a perfect virtue to have at the front of our minds in the month of August!! Our family is blessed with many strong & unique personalities, but with the blessing comes a challenge to teach them how to get along. The last few months, the boys have been pestering each other something fierce; no doubt the result of a few months of 24/7 togetherness & not much scheduling = summer! But it is also a wonderful time to “work it out” – focus on teaching them HOW to get along & love one another vs. just gutting it out until they can give each other space again. Thus peace, this month’s virtue, is really an answer to prayer. We’ve been praying for them more intently & this month’s Bible lessons really helps to zero in on a few things.

From a mother’s perspective, I told the boys I can see both of them changing & trying to love the other. The problem is, they are not doing it at the same time! When one tries to love & go the extra mile, the other takes advantage of the moment & gets extra irritating to the other. Then that brother feels guilty, tries to love & go the extra mile & the first brother decides he’s had enough & starts letting the other brother have it. And so it’s gone the last couple weeks. I told them both they will BOTH have to “go the extra mile” a LOT longer than they think they should have to & when they both do, eventually they’ll surprise themselves & meet each other’s best sides. And then there will be peace. And the whole family will rejoice. And I bet they’ll like it well enough to try to keep it up for longer than 5 seconds. (Well, one can pray for that, can’t one?)

My favorite lesson from this month is Isaac & the wells from Genesis 26. I’ve heard one sermon on that story from SM Davis years ago called “Dig Another Well’ & it sure has stuck with me. So, that’s kind of the Momma mantra I’m on these days. “Sometimes you’ve got to drop it – nobody’s winning here. Sometimes you’ve got to leave well enough alone. Don’t start it!! Seek peace & pursue it…” You get the idea. Anyway, Reggie Joiner did it again with a fantastic overview video on the subject. If you’re in need of a pep talk on peace to pass on to your littles these days, here you go…

Matthew 5:9
“God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.”

Psalm 34:14
“Depart from evil & do good; seek peace & pursue it.”