"Your greatest contribution to the Kingdom of God may not be something you do, but someone you raise." ~Andy Stanley

October 30, 2009

Carry On!

One of my favorite children's books and there are many, is
Carry On, Mr. Bowditch. I just love it!

Here are a few of the things I love:

It is based on Nathaniel Bowditch's actual life

It gives us a wonderful example of what a determined individual can accomplish

It mentions that young men should always protect women and children

It is inspiring and fun to read

As a home school mom, I loved reading to my kids about a boy who got so excited about a subject that he studied everything there was to study on it and filled a notebook with what he had learned. He did this about every topic that interested him.
(that's homeschooling at its best right there!)
He eventually became the brightest mathematician in the country. He also taught himself whatever language he decided he needed to know using a grammar book, a New Testament and a dictionary in that language. (by the end of his life, he'd learned about 2 dozen)
We also loved that he had a heart to teach even the most uneducated men on a crew, navigation in a way that they could understand. His lessons to those men eventually evolved into his book.

The part that touched our hearts the most was that when people told him that his life was 'becalmed' because of his circumstances, he decided to live above the circumstances and 'sail by ash breeze.' (in other words when you are stuck, start rowing and make things happen!)
He never made excuses for his lot in life, he just worked very hard at everything he put his mind to. He preserved.

All the talk about 'taking a lunar' had my kiddos getting the telescope out of the attic recently to look at the moon. : )

We enjoyed checking out Nathaniel Bowditch's book American Practical Navigator from the library. It is HUGE! No wonder he worked on it for so long! All the sailors of America and the world must have been so thankful that he carried on! : )


October 27, 2009

What's up!

I lovingly refer to the toddler years as the "Blessed Blurrr" because it was such a busy season in life. But now that I think about it, these teens years just as busy.
Lest it all be a blurr someday, here is what everyone is doing these days (or more specifically where I'm driving them to. lol)

Zachary is a drummer. (and our little house is very loud. -If you ever called me then you know that) Right now he is the substitute drummer in the youth worship band at church. The regular drummer is a sophomore in college and studying to be a doctor. When he can't make it, Zach takes his place. Zach is in the Fine Arts/drama group and loves it. He is also serving in the student leadership group.

Nathan is in Teen Bible Quiz again this year and they are memorizing the books of first and second Corinthians! He loves his team, loves quizzing and enjoys the traveling. It's a fun way to learn the Word of God. It has made him want to study Greek someday. Nathan plays the keyboard in our family band. He is also in the student leadership group in youth group.

Joy is in a home school dance group. She is Teen Bible Quiz now too but she's chosen to compete in the novice league which doesn't go on to Nationals and only has to memorize the book of first Corinthians. She is playing soccer this semester and really enjoying it. She and I work together in the nursery at church once a month taking care of the infants. (this is where I get my baby fix and where she's learned to be so great with little ones!) : )

Andrew is in Junior Bible Quiz this year. (he's our only kiddo left in it, since our other two have graduated) He is also in the kids church worship band. He plays the electric guitar. He LOVES, LOVES, LOVES guitar. You hardly see him without one during his free time. His band had the chance to play at VBS this year which was really exciting. They did so well, that they were asked to play in the church service the following Sunday! That was pretty incredible to play in front of such a huge crowd. (1000 people or so)

Besides all the fun (and driving!) that these activities bring to our lives, I am the president and treasurer of our home school group this year. I had been the treasurer for a couple of years, but our wonderful president recently had to step down and temporarily move out of state. You can read what she and her awesome family are doing for their sister-in-law here. (Her sister-in-law had skull replacement surgery last week and is doing well and so is her new baby who had a safe delivery!) It's been more than a little overwhelming but an honor and a pleasure serve the group this year. The group has an awesome board of directors that are SUCH a pleasure to work with and a little over 100 homeschooling families.
My hubby is still teaching his Wednesday night class at church. He teaches the Royal Rangers who are K-2nd grade boys. He loves speaking into their lives and teaching them how to be future men of God. But, 30 wiggly boys can be a challenge after a long day at work and I admire him so much for serving. I think he's been at it for 7 years now.
I guess that sums it up. It's a busy year and if I don't get to blog very often, now you'll know why! : )

October 25, 2009

A Floridian snowman by Joy

Oops! I mean sandman!


October 20, 2009

More time with our Honey

As I mentioned the other day, Honey either has pneumonia or lung cancer.
She has responded fabulously to the steroid and the antibiotic prescribed for her though and we are SO thankful!
She is breathing normally again and is eating. Hurray!
The Lord has extended our time with her!

Yesterday, even though she obviously felt better, her eyes looked so sad.
Then last night she did what we call "the golden retriever happy dance." Yay! That is what I had been waiting for. Now, I know she feels better and her eyes look happy again.

We are all in agreement that if she ever goes through what she did over the weekend then it will be her time to go. We never want to see her suffering to breathe again. It was so sad.

So, we are happy and hopefully that maybe this is pneumonia and that she will recover. That is our prayer. We'll enjoy every moment we have with her because she is PRECIOUS!


October 18, 2009

A sad night

Tonight we found out that the best dog ever most likely has lung cancer.

Still hoping and believing for pneumonia ... We'll see

Lots of tears at our house!!!! : (

Thursday is her 11th birthday!


October 16, 2009

St. Louis memories

Today, I studied the Dred Scott Decision with Joy and Andrew. How horrible for people to be told that they were property and that the Constitution did not apply to them!

It was neat to be able to tell them that Nathan and I were in that courtroom this summer!

While we were in St. Louis for TBQ Nationals, we had a day of sight seeing and one of the places we visited was the Old Courthouse, along with the Gateway Arch and the Museum of Westward Expansion. It was awesome!

I can't even think about that sightseeing trip without remembering this funny story from a friend of mine who went with us:

When she got home from the trip, she took her pictures to work and showed them to her co-workers. When she showed them the picture of the Old Courthouse she accidentally said

"And this is where the Dred Lock decision was made." ; )

Then her friend said "Um, I think you mean Dred Scott." (she was so embarrassed!)

I laughed until I cried when she told me!


October 15, 2009

My favorite drummer

Zachary playing in the worship band at youth


October 14, 2009


Joy came to me today and said:

"Mom! My Mona Lisa looks like a Picasso!!!" ; )
She and I both had to giggle because it really did!

This art curriculum I bought has the kids drawing:
a swan,
then a horse
and then Abe Lincoln followed by the Mona Lisa! Good grief! That's quite a jump if you ask me! Not so sure I like this program. lol


October 10, 2009

My Cuban Sandwich education

For Zachary's community service project work day, I decided to make cuban sandwiches. I love to EAT them but I didn't know exactly how to make them.

When I looked online, I found several different versions and decided to ask my next door neighbor who is Cuban. She emailed me an authentic recipe and her son volunteered to come over and make them for Zach's big day. (they are the best of buddies and almost like cousins since they have grown up living next door to each other for 14 yrs) It was such a sweet offer!
Apparently, if you don't put everything in just the right order, when making cuban sandwiches then they don't taste right.
I had a soccer game to attend in the morning so I planned to go by the bakery early in the morning before the game, but my neighbor's son told me that he would pick it up right before coming over. Another sweet offer!
Apparently, they aren't as good if the bread isn't fresh.

The ingredients were:

Mayo and mustard mixed together
Spanish pork (deli at Publix)
Sweet ham
Swiss cheese
Dill pickles

I know what you are thinking. Any sandwich with these ingredients is bound to be pretty good!
And you are right but these were EXCELLENT!

They were like a work of art!

The sandwich requires more ham than any other meat and so the ham is put on in rolls. How cute is that?!

(notice the ham rolls) : )
Then we put them in the oven at 450 for 3 minutes until the cheese melted. We pressed them while they were hot, and he taught me how to cut them.
Apparently, they don't taste as good if they are not cut at an angle.

My hubby declared these the best cubans he'd ever had! (and he makes his own amazing version but he says he's been dethroned now that we know how to make these!) : )

Andrew was our neighbor's helper, so he's all in the know now.

Some of the guys started talking about "red neck cubans" while they were eating and I had no idea what they were talking about.
Apparently, that is a Cuban sandwich without Spanish pork.
Who knew there was so much to this?!!?
Not I!
But it was fun and yummy!

Apparently, a certain golden retriever found them truly irresistible. She was found on her hind legs up at the island with this!



October 8, 2009


About six years ago, Zachary and I sat down and looked at what it would take for him to earn the Gold Medal of Achievement in Royal Rangers...

I'm thrilled to say that on Saturday he finished his last requirement! Whoo-hoo!!!!

(it is similar to becoming an Eagle Scout in Boy Scouts) It was a long time in coming....

For his last merit, Zachary was required to plan and supervise a community service project. He chose to make his project helping an elderly neighbor of ours who needed some work done on her house. He wrote letters to Low*s, Home Dep*t and Sherw*n Williams and talked to the managers in each store about his project and they graciously donated all the materials he needed! Yay!

The other Rangers and commanders in his class all came to help him and we had a fun day of it and our neighbor got her socks blessed off!

Thankful to be a Ranger family and so very proud of Zac!


(next time I'll tell you what I served all those sweet guys because I just love cooking!)

October 6, 2009

If they say "We're bored"...

get out some toothpicks and marshmallows!

I got this idea years ago when we did this game as a team building exercise in a class.

We were timed and told to take dry spaghetti noodles and marshmallows and see who could build the tallest structure. Fun!

I've revised it a little since then. We use toothpicks instead. It's a great activity to do when your kids have company. I don't time them because that would end the fun to soon.

It's quiet fun!!! -They sit, chat, create and munch! : )

(a big plus for moms!)

It's always so much fun to see what they can make.

(above is Joy's Farris wheel)

So, keep some toothpicks and marshmallows on hand.


October 3, 2009

Joy in soccer

Joy is enJOYing soccer again!

(The enthusiastic soccer mom made her look into the sun for this picture. Sorry, Joy!)

The season started this week!

Joy used to play when she was 5-8 yrs. old. When she was seven she joined the Junior Bible Quiz ministry at church and doing both wasn't really fair to either of her teams because they had match/games on the same days. So, we put soccer on hold until she graduated from JBQ which happened this past May. I can never say enough good about all the scriptures and doctrine she learned in JBQ and I know we made the right decision. She absolutely loved her years in JBQ!

She had a natural gift for soccer when she was little. I just have to get this story recorded on our blog, because I'll always remember it: We have a golden retreiver and our kids used to love all those Air Bud movies. Joy especially loved the soccer Air Bud movie! The star of the movie did this cool move to dodge the other players and Joy actually watched that movie so many times, that she learned it. We didn't know she learned it. But one game day, she tried it out! And it worked and it blew us away! It was so cute!

So, it has been really fun to be helping her get ready to go back to soccer. She's been looking forward to it for about 2 years!

We enJOYed shopping for her new ball (gray and PINK) and I found the cutest Adidas shin guards at Ross, of all places and they are PINK!

They are SO cute, I was actually wishing that she could wear them on the outside of her socks at the game. lol ('cause I'm weird like that!)

The other day we went cleat shopping and she kept saying "But they are all black!"
and she sounded was so bummed and I was so confused.
I kept thinking 'didn't she always play in black cleats in the past?'
Well, apparently, she'd been envisioning playing soccer in cleats that were PINK.
-She is her mother's daughter! : )
Wouldn't that have been too cute?!

Well, her team had their first practice last night and their first game this morning...
Not much time in between that wasn't spent sleeping...

But the verdict is and
she LOVED it!

~Becky, who is enJOYing being a soccer mom once more