Sunday, March 31, 2013

Project 365, Week 13

Words escape me to try to sum up this week.  Its not anything that fits nicely into a paragraph or two.  Its the kind of week someone close would hear about over coffee.  

It was giving and serving during four performances of The Passion of the King.  It was a stressful, nightmarish roller coaster ride with the mortgage company, trying to get our house deal put through.  It was hugs and meetings and running.  It was throwing baseballs and throwing fits and grappling with the overwhelming love that was shown by the work on the cross.  It was emails and texts and sending yet another fax.  It was knowing looks, searching looks.  It was souls saved.  It was good.

I attempted to not have this week's photos be ALL about The Passion, and I didn't do too bad.

March 24
We spent a nice quiet morning at home...Amanda wanted someone to play Barbies with her, so we did salon while Shaun and Avery were down stairs talking theology.

I read that if you add a little fabric softener to water and dip a comb in it, you can tame a Barbie's hair.  It worked!

We had a good supervisor, too.  (Pay no attention to his shirt...its a hand-me-down that he loves to wear).
 March 25
We met my brother and sister at my mom's, which yielded us 10 cousins for egg decorating and hunting.
 March 26
We enjoyed a warm-ish day and the kids discovered Crocus's.

 My beautiful girl, growing older by the day.

March 27
Passion, Night #3

March 28
You got a little somethin' on your lip, Manda.
 March 29
Family yard clean up.  The kids kept saying it was summer...50 degrees!  :)
 March 30
Easter!  Beautiful service, just felt strange to be sitting in a seat, next to Shaun no less.
 March family pic in our Sunday best.  :)

He is Risen!!

Good morning!  I will post this week's Project 365 later, but for now....


I know that I know that I know that I know that I know my Redeemer lives....I spoke with Him this morning, He LIVES!!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Tappin' Trees

Every year, sap time is anxiously awaited.  This year the kids, particularly Aiden, kept asking about it.  Z had not experienced it before but knew it all sounded good.  Finally, we got the call from Pop that it was time!!

First, here are some interesting facts that I pulled off my friend's blog.  Very interesting!

-the process of getting sap from maple trees and turning it into maple syrup or sugar is called sugaring. 

-the Native Americans were doing this and taught the early immigrants about maple sugaring. 

-for every 1 gallon of sap a tree yields, there is another 1000 gallons of sap running through it’s fibers. 

-the term for the maple sap moving throughout the fibers of the tree is called “running” 

-the sugaring season last for 4-6 weeks a year, beginning when temperatures rises to about 40 degrees during the day and drops below freezing at night. The sap stops running when the variation in temps lessens. 

-there are 4 types of maple trees, sugar maples yield the sweetest syrup. 

-maple sap is a clear liquid that has a slightly sweet taste

-40 gallons of sap is required to make 1 gallon of syrup, which can be sold for about $65.00/gal. 

-depending on the size of the tree, it can be tapped up to 3 times without harming the tree. 

First a quick hike up the hill...

 Didn't take long for the taste-testing to begin.
 Z is always happy to be able to operate a powertool by himself.

Amanda stopped at Riley's grave to give him a quick kiss.
 And what is an afternoon of tapping trees without a tea party??  :)  Thanks for the good times, Pop.  The kids will enjoy the fruits of their your labor.

On the first day you must get the best fruit from the trees. You must also get palm leaves, leafy branches and poplar branches. You must be filled with joy in my sight for seven days. I am the Lord your God.
Leviticus 23:40

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Project 365, Week 12

Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!  Palm Sunday!

Just so you are warned, there are quite a few pictures here, half of them are from a phone.  It was a predictably crazy week with four rehearsals and a performance added to regular life.

The 20th marked the date ONE year ago that we first met Z, though I'm certain I was the only one who knew it.  Stirred up some extra emotions that I wrestled with.  Have I mentioned God is growing me??  :)

Onto our week....I'll make an effort to not have this entire coming week of pictures to be about The Passion play...we'll see.

March 17
I came home from my run and it was just my two boys at home.  We had a nice breakfast together and enjoyed a short but quiet and sweet morning.

We got to spend the afternoon with family while we celebrated Grandpa's birthday.  It might have been the first time I've had cabbage on St. Patrick's Day.

 Aiden and I made sure to wear our green.  This holiday means absolutely nothing to me, but I'm always game for being festive.
March 18
As the promise of a new house becomes more real, I'm starting to think about wanting to document everyday life as it was at this house.  

I mean, that's pretty much ALL I document around here, but I've had moments of panic wondering what I'll ever do if I don't have a picture of the kids brushing their teeth in THIS bathroom.

I know...rough life, right?

Anyway, that's what was going through my head when I took this.  Aiden sitting on his knees at a deserted table, eating his cereal.  His pajama bottoms are crooked and his shirt is kinda tucked in because he just finished in the bathroom.

March 19
Shaun and Aiden were out plowing (yes, plowing!) so I hit the grocery store by myself.  At one point, I looked down at my cart and it struck me so hard....I am SO very blessed that I can go to the grocery store, any day of the week, fill my cart with food and have the means to pay for it. blessed and thankful that, at least on this day, I didn't take it for granted.
 First dress rehearsal night.

 March 20
For the first time in my 10 weeks of training this winter, I was unable to make myself get up with my 4:30 alarm.  Instead I slept in.  When Shaun woke later he took one look at me and asked what the frown was for.  I said, I am cranky!

So thankfully, my sister and I were taking advantage of a couple Groupon's we had for hair.  We made our appointments for the same time and then even went to lunch after.  It was lovely (and did wonders for my mood)!
 Aiden stayed with my sister and got to celebrate the first day of Spring in style.

I left rehearsal once the kids were done practicing so they could get to bed, but Amy sent me this picture of Shaun filling in for the missing Judas.  A man of many talents!

 March 21
Another dress rehearsal....Aiden was having fun hanging out with his cousin.
 March 22
One of the highlights of opening night....riding the shuttle!
 March 23
I went in to check on the girls who were cleaning their room.  Looks like they decided to take a Barbie break.
 Aiden wanted to "read" Waldo before nappy.  He kept asking where "Waldo Woo" is, who is from a Dr. Seuss book.  We had to call in the expert to help us find the stripped man.
 Took the kids and the dog for some fresh air.  I am weary of being optimistic about the weather and instead I'm just really, really annoyed that we have snow. hasn't helped any.

 Amanda got all dolled up for grown up!
Praying God is real to you as you go about this Easter Week.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Give it Away

As Avery gets older, she is developing her own tastes in music.  Toby Mac is her current favorite.

He would be one of the last ones I would listen to, except that I really believe in trying to stay connected to my kids, to be "in the know" about the things they care about.  Reluctant at first, he has certainly grown on me as I've kept a (somewhat) open mind.

And sometimes I will even turn on his music when no one else is here.  :)

One of my very favorites is Steal My Show.

Love TobyMac's explanation of the song:

Dad is asking God to take his show and do something bigger with it than he ever could.....You have a life and you can take it and make it yours, or you can give it away and have God do something bigger with it than you could ever imagine.

And kind of with that, this gem of a quote I stumbled upon.

But my life means nothing to me. I only want to finish the race. I want to complete the work the Lord Jesus has given me. He wants me to give witness to others about the good news of God’s grace.
Acts 20:24

Thursday, March 21, 2013

This and That Thursday

I made up that clever title, though I'm sure its not original.  Feel free to use it.  ;)

I feel like it has been SO long since I've done a life update post.  But then, when I steal a few minutes to sit down, I find it difficult to put thought to paper, at least outside of my personal journal.  There are lots of big, huge things going on in our lives, but much of it is not talk-able material yet.  For instance...

I think we are buying a house, yet we are still getting more aggravation than commitment from the bank who has told us they will finance it.  January 30 was the contract signing, yet we're still not sure if we'll be closing next week or if the bank will say no.

We have a foster child who may very well be with us for a long, looong time.  Or, maybe he'll go back to live with his bio family next week.

Shaun and I have some exciting ministry opportunities overseas in the fall...trying to decide on some very preliminary logistics for that.

The calendar says Spring arrived, but, darn-it-all, its freezing and has flurried most of the day today....and we've still got inches of snow covering the ground.

To make everything a little more interesting, we're in the middle of tax season and Easter production time.  This means Shaun and I do what I picture speed dating to be....talking about really important things in a short amount of time.  Like, short.  I have to admit, the ridiculousness of it has gotten to be somewhat comical.  Its also made me thankful for the solid foundation our marriage has...its been tested! :)

So, since I can't talk about what's really going on in our lives, I thought I'd share some photos from the other day.

When I saw the first one, I thought, wow...Amanda's so pretty and her bangs are really looking good.
And then I couldn't help but dig up some from September, when we were at the very beginning of The Bang saga.  She only posed for this picture, because she was showing off her new-to-her shirt.  But!

 That same evening.....Amanda getting in the car this way just sums her up so well.  There is no "thinking outside the box" for her.  She dwells outside.

And speaking of the Easter production, I took a little clip from the kids practicing last night.  All four of mine are in it, but this one is so you can see Aiden, who just came on the scene...get it?  :)

(My two are the ones with barefeet.  You know those moms who always seem to have it all together and their children are always prepared?  Yeah...I'm not one of them. :)

Opening night is tomorrow and we'll do FIVE shows.  We'd love to have you join us if you're able!