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

June 30, 2014

Last week

Our daughter is earning her community service hours for high school at our local museum of science this summer. She is a science camp counselor for second graders and they do the coolest experiments EVER, all day long. (not to mention throwing watermelons and cantaloupes off the roof) She called it 'heaven for a homeschooler.' One cute little boy has a crush on her! 
She would love to work there when she turns 18, so we are praying for this to turn into a paying job. 

We also spent the week getting my hubby's brother packed up to head back to CA as we ended another season of care-giving. Besides the small seizure he had when he first arrived, that caused him to fall and sprain his ankle in the bathroom, all went well this time. Thank the Lord!

I read this powerful, true story recently. And Wow! Amazing! Hard to put it down. 

We happened to be at the beach when I was at the part in the book where they were in a life raft for 47 days, surrounded by sharks. So, I started telling my hubby how he could fend off a shark if one were to come by. But he had another strategy -Get out of the water! ; ) 
It is a great read and is being made into a movie that will be out on Christmas Day. Can't wait! 

Here's big news! Be-still-my-heart, we found a Mexican restaurant that serves authentic ROLL TACOS! I couldn't believe I was eating them without having flown across the country first!!! And it was a buffet! As in, all the roll tacos and guacamole I could eat! (which turned out to be 4)  I was in heaven! And now I need to work out all week. LOL

I made these cookies last week, and they were incredible. (more reasons to work out!) My kids didn't think gluten-free cookies would taste very good, but they loved them. We aren't a gluten-free family (Hubby likes to say 'Give us this day, our daily gluten' -LOL)  but it seems that everyone else is these days, so I want to remember this recipe. They'd make a great gift in a cute package.

Our son gave his first 'real sermon' this weekend up in Big Bear over the weekend, so we've been praying for him and we can't wait to hear how it went. 

That's all that we are up to. Hope you are enjoying your summer.

June 27, 2014

Back from the break

We had a fabulous time when our son, Nathan, visited! It was 11 days packed with fun. Our dear friends from CA also came to vacation here at the same time, so that made for double the fun.

It was so great to have all four kids together again! 

While he was here:

I was very blessed to have a coffee date with my three boys and hear things on their hearts.

(this hipster bookstore/coffee shop has Jane Eyre BOARD books, for babies! I'm still not sure what to think about this)

On Wednesday, both families spent a gorgeous day at the beach, but no one captured any pics.
 Then we had a dinner party that night and then went to church.

The next day we went to Busch Gardens!!! It looked like rain so the lines were not too long.

Friday we had planned to go tubing down a beautiful river that is fed by a spring. We had been planning it for months and we had someone lined up to come and check on my Hubby's brother while we were away. But it turned out that we were all exhausted from the past two days in the sun. So we slept in. Also, Hubby thought he could take the week off, but a big project kept him at work. Until that day, when it rained so much that he had to come home! Yahoo! So, instead of tubing, we started celebrating Father's Day early and took him out to breakfast. Then he and the boys headed to their favorite place: Guitar Center.

That night we gave a party for our very dear friend, who just became an American citizen. So proud of him! -It looked a lot like the 4th of July around here.

That night, Andrew had friends stay over and Zac, Nate and Joy went to stay over with their various friends and we met back the next afternoon for a family day in Downtown Disney. -It pretty much took as long to find a parking space as it did to drive there. We ate and then did some window shopping.

Apparently you are never too old for Lord of the Rings Legos!!!

Sunday was Father's Day! Nathan and our dear friends enjoyed being in the class that Hubby teaches and then we worshiped together. After church we went out to lunch and then the boys had a Father's Day surprise for Dad. They played his favorite Switchfoot song and Nathan sang it! He love, love, loved it.

Monday, was a relaxing day. I caught up on LAUNDRY and Nathan spent time at the church with other friends in ministry.

 The next day we braved the heat to play Frisbee Golf which Nathan has been looking forward to for months. Great fun with just our four. It reminded me of our "Blessed Academy" field trips. : )

Then we went to have dinner and fellowship with some dear friends and tried enchiladas with mole. Amazing!

Wednesday, Hubby was able to take a half of the day off and came home early for our last family day together. We made Hubby's famous BBQ chicken and watched one of the kids' favorite childhood movies, Iron Giant. And the musicians had some fun jamming together.

There was also lots of laundry and packing happening because that night after church, the youth group headed off to camp. Joy and Andrew had to say goodbye to Nathan before they left.
 We had a little mother/son time watching the Sound of Music, eating popcorn and playing 2048 after church. -Isn't he a sweetheart?!

Thursday, there was more packing, but for Nathan this time. Then he and Dad went a Ray's game and had a great time together. When we bought these tickets, the Rays were good. LOL Now, not so much. But they did win that night and the guys were up pretty late.

Nathan had to fly out early in the morning so the rest of us said our goodbyes at 5:00 AM.

I miss that sweet guy already. But we are all excited about what God is doing in his life. He's happy in CA so, we are happy for him. And we can't wait until Christmas when we get to see him again! Yay!


June 11, 2014

Wednesdays in the Word

A very good reason to be in the Word regularly:

'If you abide in My word, you are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.'
John 8:31-32

Being made free can be a process.
 So we keep abiding. :-)


June 10, 2014

The big day!

Here's what happens when your hubby gets a new exercise bike and puts it in your bedroom and uses it at 4:30 AM six feet away from you:
You find out that your floor creaks
You decide that 30 minutes is really a long time
You dream that you joined a gym and you don't like it! LOL

In other news, I spent 3 and half hours at a poll working class for the election in August, which will be a piece of cake compared to the Presidential election I worked last.
Then I raced to the grocery store to shop and recruited all my kids and their friends, who were over, to help cook for Nathan's arrival and that of our BFFs from CA. It warmed my heart to no end. Our kids have the sweetest friends! We made egg rolls and an Asian salad and espresso brownies and and white chocolate snicker doodles.

Then there was a trip to the airport and a delayed flight and lots of sign holding

and laughs from other passengers...

Then back to our house for a party at 10:00 PM with a bunch of our favorite people!

 And then 9 young people decided to spent the night!
You know its crowded when 2 end up sleeping on tile and you know they are tired (and young) when they can pull that off. ; )

Off to have more fun with the ones I love!

June 4, 2014

Wednesdays in the Word

Speaking of Compassion, these are the verses the Lord showed us when He put sponsorship on our hearts after the birth of our first baby.

"Blessed is he who considers the poor. The Lord will deliver him in time of trouble. The Lord will preserve him and keep him alive. And he will be blessed on the earth. You will not deliver him to the will of his enemies. The Lord will strengthen him on his bed of sickness. You will sustain him on his sickbed."
 Psalms 41:1-3

We believed those verses and prayed that as we supported a child on the other side of the world, that God would, according to these verses, be with our child in sickness and heal him when need be.
But God took that one step further, and that baby (who is now 21) was rarely ever very sick. He's only needed to see a doctor for illnesses a handful of times!

That doesn't, of course, count stitches! :-)

June 2, 2014

Girls' Night Out...with the Hubby

I mentioned recently here, that we have been Compassion sponsors for a long time.We love Compassion and believe in the integrity of their ministry. We've had  three children at different times. Two of them disappeared due to the unrest in their countries, which was so sad. Our present 'child' is from Nicaragua and she is 16 and we've had her since she was in preschool!  So, when Compassion contacted us to help represent them at a Chonda Pierce concert in our area, we said YES!

We knew that Chonda Pierce is a Christian comedian but we've never been to one of her shows before. In fact, we were so focused on Compassion being the reason we were going that we didn't really give any thought to the show because we were just there to work at their table in the lobby. As it turned out, we were able to sit in on the show until the intermission.

And that, my Friends, is how it came about that Hubby ended up being at event that was called
  Girl TALK! 

Bless his heart!
We didn't actually know the name of the event so, he started getting nervous when we pulled up and saw 200 women in line and not one single MAN. Not one.
In fact, he got so flustered he left the Prius on when we got out of the car. And now we know for sure that we can leave it on for 4 and half hours with the lights on WITHOUT the battery dying! LOL!

As we were waiting to enter the building, I was standing behind a woman who was obviously wearing her pajamas and I got a little concerned about her mental state.Then while standing at the Compassion table we kept seeing more and more women in their PJs and realized it was a thing!
It was definitely a Girl's night out and that is how my Hubby ended up in a church with 2400 women listening to jokes about lipo, menopause and Spanx! (he leaned over at one point and told me I would have to explain "Spanx" to him later) ; )
 Poor guy! I felt desperately sorry for him! We did actually see another man in the audience and he was actually came in his PJs too. Not sure what to think about his mental state. LOL

While we were learning the ropes at the Compassion table, we were asked several times how long we have been sponsors. This made us feel very old and very young all at the same time!!! We said we became sponsors after the birth of our first baby and they asked us how old our baby is now and we said 21! They didn't think we looked old enough to have a 21 year old, but of course we are... So, that was fun!
But helping 117 children from all over the world receive sponsors that night, was the best fun of all! : )