Monday, July 31, 2006

Back to the Grindstone

We have returned from the mountaintop and are beginning to melt. At the base of Long's Peak and Twin Sisters sits a church camp. We spent 6 wonderful days in the cool comfort of Colorado, escaping 100 degree temperatures in Kansas. We attended seminars each day on worship and discussion about them. Each afternoon we had free to play. Outside our lodge, the children gathered on the playground. Our girls loved it. Especially Je with her new-found skill in leg pumping.

Daddy loved the outdoor adventure sports at camp. He flew down the zip line a couple times and just raved about the rock climbing wall.
I was prodded into trying the zip line.

The zip line runs 1000 feet long and at some points is 100 feet above the ground. This picture was taken as I passed the lowest point so Shan and the girls could get a good look at me. I was terrified, but I knew he was taking a picture so I smiled. We had a great time and the fellowship and worship times were refreshing. We went to church camp a lot growing up and so it was fun to take our kids. Many of the kids they played with at camp were children of kids I knew at camp as a kid and teenager. Some were even grandchildren of people my mother went to camp with as a child and teenager. I love the continuity of it. Sometimes the smallness and interrelatedness of our denomination can be a problem but usually I love it. The week at camp was one of those times.

Can you tell we got a new camera to take on vacation?

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Phone Calls

It was another dreaded phone call. Mom called to cancel plans; she was going to sit with her aunt, whose grandson had been killed that morning in a motorcycle accident. He had just graduated college and was preparing for a year-long mission trip to Brazil. I've been sifting through my memories of family gatherings and other times when I saw him. His parents once stayed with my sisters and I while our parents were out of town for the weekend. I remember I was in grade school and it was the school carnival we didn't want to miss. They took us and then we went to have supper at Wendy's. We got some strange looks because it was just two parents and 5 children and one on the way. It looked like we were a huge family. I am not sure how to feel about this. Our family is a close one but second cousins, and especially ones that are 10 years younger are not particularly intimate relationships. But I am saddened for his parents and brothers. His grandparents and other loved ones.

On the completely opposite end of the emotional spectrum, while eating supper with my sister and family, my brother-in-law received a call from his brother. He is engaged, and the wedding is in December. This is another young man, almost done with college planning a career in the Navy. In the five years my sister has been married I have really come to love her in-laws. So I celebrate with them at this news.

Such a wide range of things. My mind raced as I tried to sleep. That couple with a bad backache kept me awake. I'm going to have a rough go today. I really dread these kind of things. I am horrible at knowing what to do and then I feel like my inaction is worse, but I don't want to offend. Lord, give me wisdom.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

I've learned a lot about waiting on God and contentment since this picture was taken. This week the thermometer has pegged at 101 degrees for the first time since Aug. 26, 2003. For almost three years this picture has been on my fridge so I have not had any trouble remembering what I was doing that week. This was a picture of the first time I got to hold my new daughter; she was 4 days old and just 3 lbs and 8 oz. She was delivered by emergency c-section at 12:22 am and I saw her briefly before they whisked her to the NICU. After a couple hours in recovery they wheeled me back to my room by way of the NICU and I saw her again for a few moments, but I was very groggy. I developed a fever and wasn't able to go in the NICU. I didn't even get out of bed for three days, the nurses came in several times each night to wake me up and roll me over so I could get moving enough to get out of bed more quickly. I remember lying in the hospital bed feeling the waves of heat come through the window. The air conditioning wasn't up to the job of keeping the building cool when the temp outside had been over 100 for four straight days. That whole time has been on my mind a lot as the news has reported on the heat and as people have been so generous in support since my grandmother. I remember the volunteers who drove me to the hospital after I was released so I could visit Jo and meals brought in since I was supposed to be resting. Shan had started a new job the same week I had Jo and couldn't get time off. The first few days of school are hard to be gone. He took one day off, the day she was born but mostly I was on my own. My mother had Je and then she had a trip planned that she needed to do. No one expected the baby six weeks early. God truly is good.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

A Hard Week's Play

I 've learned that if you keep a child so busy playing they will sleep well.

We've had a busy week of playing. First we had a playday at the park for our babysitting co-op. Je is trying so hard to make it across the monkey bars.

Je finally mastered the art of swinging on her own. I have tried for about a year to teach her how to pump her legs to keep herself going but she didn't get. Then this week a lightbulb moment and off she goes. We've had a hard time keeping her off the swings since.

Then Grandma and Pacca came to visit and we went to the zoo and rode the mini train. Jo was so anxious about the tunnel that she hid her eyes and plugged her ears for the first half of the ride. She hates loud noises. After we emerged, she smiled tearfully but wouldn't unplug her ears. She was afraid someone on the train would scream.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Principle Vs Preference

I had to link to Jill's blog because I could soooo identify with her thought. We all have a dream church, or congregation or pastor. Heck, it probably extends to most of life, houses, cars, jobs, families, towns in-laws, the grass is always greener. I am firmly convicted that God puts us in the situations HE has for us and we should concentrate on glorifying Him rather than worrying about our comfort and convience. As to the church thing, I came to the conclusion a long time ago that there are salvation issues and things that are not. In matters of principle, stand like a rock, (salvation by grace) and in matters of taste, be willing to accept others ideas as their preferance and agree to disagree, (exclusive psalmody, a cappella singing). The church I have belonged to all my life has these as important parts of worship. I choose to stay in the church because I agree with the theology of the church and its Reformed premise. I also love singing the Psalms and doing so without musical instruments. Those are a matter of preference for me. I can attend other churches and sing the hymns to the accompaniment of an organ, a piano, or a rock band and it is still honoring to God as long as He is the focus of my worship not the minutia.

Friday, July 07, 2006


I know I have blogged about our favorite restaurant in a previous post.

But the episode today was too good not to pass on. We were seated and the waiter arrived with two diet cokes. He just brought them. Since we had extras in our party today, my sister and her husband are still visiting after the funeral, they go back Sunday, he had to take their drink order but he brought mine and my mother's before taking our order.I think they know us there. Huh. Viva!!!!!!

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Sad News

This morning at 5:20 am my grandmother passed away peacefully in her sleep. She was 83 years old and had suffered a recurrance of the cancer she had been fighting for almost 13 years. Please remember my mother especially at this time and our family in your prayers.