Monday, August 31, 2009

First trip to Shriner Hospital

Kalysa and I made our first trip to Shreveport for an appointment at the Shriner hospital. We left Okc about 8 in the morning on Wednesday in a Shriner van. About an hour away we stopped and picked up two more patients that also had appointments. The shriners let Kalysa check out a portable DVD player and a movie.

She spent most of the ride watching "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang." It took us about 7 hours so we are all VERY thankful that the DVD player had head phones:) ! We stopped for lunch at a Mcdonalds and then the driver also stopped at a Russel Stovers store and bought all three kids a big bag of jelly beans. After we got to town, we checked into the motel that the Shriners had set up for us. After settling in a little, we all went to supper at CiCi's pizza. The entire community seems to have embraced the Shriners and the children they help. We got supper for free and there are a few other restaurants that apparently do the same thing for the Shriner patients. After supper, we had a free evening at the motel.

Kalysa wanted to go to the pool but I did not bring any suits so I told her she could just play on the steps. I was not planning on getting wet myself until Kalysa stepped off the bottom step and could not touch bottom so I ended up jumping in with my clothes on to grab her. After that she was done with swimming. We headed back to the room for baths and a little relaxing.

Keslee had called me 3 times and was really missing her mama. She wanted to know EVERYTHING about the trip and our room..."Are there 2 beds or one? Is there a tv? Is it a big screen? Do they give you soap? What color is the soap? It is white, I thought it would be blue. Do you have a sink? Is there a bathroom? You have a Dr. Pepper, where did you get it? How do you get ice? Is there any chairs by the pool?...." Kalysa and I went around and took pictures of everything from the toilet to the pop machines to the tv to the pool to the ice machine so that Keslee could see it all when we got home.
Here is Kalysa standing beside the van that we rode down on.

And here is the Shriner that drove the van.
The next morning we had to be up at 6 am. We had breakfast at the motel and then checked out and headed to the hospital by 7am. We all checked in and waited for our appointments. The hospital is completely geared toward the children so the entire lobby is full of fun things for the kids to do. Normally the kids are expected to sit in the waiting room and be quiet but here they had toys and rocking horses and tricycles and games. Kalysa instantly met up with another little boy about 3 years old and they raced all around on the bikes. When it was finally her turn, we went into the gait lab and she had to walk back and forth on a little path while being video taped. Next they did lots of measurements and stretches to verify and note her range of movement and her strength. Then she was taped up with little silver balls at each of her joints and electrodes taped to her muscles and she had to walk the path again. There were special cameras mounted all around the room that picked up the little balls and made a digital image of her on the computer. We got to watch her little digital robot walking on the screen. It was kinda like watching a "the making of..." for a digital cartoon movie.

The balls were not actually lit up but the flash from the camera reflected off of them resulting in "Kalysa the Christmas tree". She TOTALLY did not want to wear the little bikini top and kept trying to cover up but it was necessary for all the electrodes to be seen by the cameras. The 2 lab techs that were doing the tests were ladies and they assured her they would not let any boys in while she had it on. The tests took about 2 hours to complete. The doctor will now go over all the information collected (I was told it will take him about 4 hours to process it all) and customize a plan for her surgery specific to her needs. After we finished, we found our party, both other boys were finished with their appointments, and headed home. We stopped at a little buffet for lunch and everyone got to eat for $2.50 each. One of the cooks came out and gave our driver a wad of cash to give the Shriners to help with travel expenses. We got home about 6:30 pm. The trip was pleasant and it was really great to see the support of the community for the Shriner kids. I feel much more at ease now that I have been to the hospital and seen the environment. Kalysa took it all in as one big adventure and she did great. It is now about a month until our next trip for surgery. I am praying that the Shriners will allow Monty and I both to ride the van then. I was told it is possible if the van is not full with other patients and because she will be staying for surgery. My mom will be on vacation that week and will keep Kenyon and Keslee. She is planning on making the trip down when Kalysa has surgery and we are praying for her to have the finances to do so. If you would pray with us on these things, it would be greatly appreciated-and of course for the doctors and Kalysa's safety during surgery.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Progress in the kitchen

I have completed my cooking for the day-well, except for supper for today - and thought i would share some photos.

Garlic pull apart bread for supper (spaghetti) tonight. It is VERY good.

Chicken and Noodles for Monty, Kenyon, and Keslee to have for supper tomorrow while I am away. They love this stuff so much, I just hope I made enough.

Cinnamon rolls for breakfast for the next 2 days. This is the first time I have tried this recipe and it is DELICIOUS-so I had a little taste test. These are BY FAR the best cinnamon rolls that I have ever made!
Well now that I have been standing at the stove for about 6 hours, I think I'll take a break before supper.
all recipe links are in previous post.

Order returns

I am finally feeling like myself again and am really starting to accomplish some things. I just wonder where all this energy has been hiding?!? Just goes to show how bad things can get when you ignore the gifts God gives and try to go it alone! I am still amazed when I realize how denying one little God given gift completely threw off every other aspect of my life. It is one of those hindsight is 20/20 things. I could not see how far from my normal self I really was until I finally returned. The entire atmosphere of this house is different. God gave me the task of being the keeper of a home and the helpmeet to my husband and the mother to my children and he gave me specific tools to use to accomplish each of these things. By setting one of those tools down, I had been able to accomplish none of them; but now, in the past week I have accomplished more than I can even express (if you have no idea what I am talking about, please read previous post). Here is a partial list of some of our biggest accomplishments....

1.the girls bedroom cleaned top to bottom-clean closet, clean under the bed, cleaned out the toy box and given everything a place

2.consistently having them re-clean-up every night so they go to bed with a clean room

3.all of the clean laundry folded and put away(I still have hang up clothes waiting in a basket) the living room clean-dusted-dvds organized-under couch and chairs clean-behind entertainment center clean

5.consistently having all 3 kids re-clean-up living room every night

6.filled 1 trash bag with clothes to donate-I imagine about 5 or 6 bags will follow.

7.helped Kenyon learn what really clean means in regaurds to his room-it took a few days and some kicking and screaming but he finally understood and got it done and he is so much happier in his freshly clean room.

8.made homemade laundry soap-it doesn't seem to be thickining like it should so I may have to work with it some more.

9. lots more that I can't really think of specifically right now!!

10.growing more and more in the Lord daily and becoming more and more thankful for His will and His perfect plan and the fact that He does reveal it to us when we are ready to accept it.

It has been sooooo nice to feel order back in our home. The only thing better than goint to bed knowing that the house is all clean is waking up to a clean house. I still have lots of laundry to do but a large part of it is going to be leaving our home. We have way too much!! I also still have the bathrooms to deep clean.

Kalysa and I will be leaving for her tests with the shriners so I am spending today making sure Monty and the other 2 will have everything they need while I am gone. I have cinnamon rolls rising (for their breakfast) and chicken boiling (for a big pot of chicken and noodles). I figure if I make sure there is plenty of homemade goodness here while I am gone they won't miss me as bad but will want me to hurry back:) I also have pull apart garlic bread cooking for supper tonight. links provided for each recipe

Boy, it is so good to be back!!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

I am now ready to be the keeper of my home

Ok, I have to admit it, I AM NOT A KEEPER OF MY HOME. At least I haven't been so far. I thought I was. I mean I am here everyday and I cook and straighten up and even keep the dishes caught up and everyone in clean clothes but really I AM BAD. I have not been using the spiritual gifts God gave me in my own home. I have done the spiritual gift test and it revealed what I can now see is so obvious. I am an administrator. I love to make things work, I do great under pressure, I like things done a certain way-MY way. This is an explanation of someone with the gift of administration....

"You don't often admit to mistakes (I mean, I WOULD if I made one) and do not like to take time to explain why you are doing things (Isn't BECAUSE I SAID SO! an explanation?); you just expect the job to get done.(OH YEA! That is ME!) If things in the church, office, club, etc. become fragmented, you can harmonize the whole program if given a chance. You are a person with a dream and are not afraid to attempt the impossible(Really?! Is anything REALLY impossible?!). You are goal-oriented, well-disciplined, and work best under heavy pressure.(pressure is good, I need a little pressure) You are often a good motivator(most often, I can get people busy) and not a procrastinator(ok, I do have a tendency to procrastinate but only until the pressure rises to the level I need to GET ER DONE). You are serious minded, highly motivated, intense(so I have been accused a time or two), and have an accurate self-image. You tend to be more interested in the welfare of the group than your own desire. You are probably a perfectionist and want things done your way now(I cant call myself a perfectionist because I am a perfectionist that cant ever get things perfected so I refuse to use the term perfectionist until I live up to it which is impossible so I must not be a perfectionist BUT I want it done MY way and NOW because my way is most often to most perfect way possible to get things done-know what I mean?). Although to others you appear to be organized, you usually aren't(some may think it but I am sooo not most of the time). Be careful that you do not make decisions just based on logic rather than Scripture. Work on your willingness to
admit to making a mistake
(yea, I'll get on that part!)and on being more sensitive to "little" people(this most likely means my family, most often). Try to be a little more tolerant of other people's mistakes(if they would have done it my way there wouldn't have been mista....oh yea...tolerant...I'll try harder). Beware of Satan's attack on your gift. He can cause pride(UT-OH) because of your leadership role, selfishness (OH-ME!) because of success (not sharing glory with those under you), blame-shifting when things go wrong(BUT THEY...BUT...BU...OH ALRIGHT!), discouragement and
frustration when goals are not met(I have been living here)
, anger and mistreatment (yep, ashamed to say, that's my address) of those who disagree with your plans, lack of concern for people, lack of spiritual growth, and wrong motives."

Well that pretty much sums it up! I have been in the "Satan attacking" stage for awhile but the Lord has been working and growing me all along. It all started a while back when I wanted to be the perfect submissive wife so I tried to force my husband to lead in areas he is not made for (doesn't submissive mean force others to do stuff?). He is not an administrator in the least bit. I looked at my spiritual gift as a leadership role and pride stepped in and I felt like I was the head honcho of this whole operation and my husband became one of the "little" people in my eyes. I knew that was not a biblical way to live so I decided my husband had to take on all things I had previously been in charge of and I would just then submit to him and do none of the things I was best at. That led me straight into the discouragement and frustration because things were not getting done. It wasn't that he did not try, man, he gave it his best shot. He is just not wired the same as me. His strengths are not my strengths. His gifts are not my gifts. Oh thank the Lord because if there were 2 administrators trying to administrate the same home it could get really messy! So while my poor husband is doing his best to fill the role God created me to fill as well as filling his own role, he is feeling more and more like a failure because things are getting worse and I am getting more and more frustrated because I know I could get things fixed and back in order but I have to be submissive so I let him struggle and I move in to the anger phase and nothing is right with the universe. Because I have forced some of my role upon my husband, the rest of my role has been adversely affected. I have felt useless and unmotivated. I just can't seem to get anything done because if I can't get it all done the way it needs to be what is the purpose of doing part of it but I can't do all of it because I am to busy being submissive and forcing my husband to do half of it. We have no schedule, there is NO organization, my house is almost condemnable, my children are running amuck and I don't know how to submissively take charge and make things right! Finally-we talk! The Lord has been growing my wonderful husband as well this whole time we have been wandering through our own wilderness. Monty realized (and said-which I give him total props for. It takes a BIG man to admit these things) he is not made to fill the role he has been trying to fill. It is my role and he knows it and I know it and if we just put things back the way God intended it, all could once again become right in our universe. HALLELUJAH!!! I feel like myself again. I have purpose. I am back where God made me to be. My husband is happy because a weight he was not meant to carry is off of his shoulders. He has complete confidence we will be coming out of this wilderness because he knows I have been given the map that can lead us out and he had no way of reading it, God gave it to me and not to him. My home is already looking more "kept" now that the keeper is back. Our kids have been warned that changes are a comin and they are preparing. And I am depending on the Lord to keep me in check when it comes to submitting to my husband. I am learning that being made to take control in certain areas of raising a family and keeping a home does not equal me being the leader of my family. Monty is our leader and he has put me in a position of leadership in some areas, the same areas God gave me the ability to control. So SATAN, GET BEHIND ME! and take your pride and selfishness and frustration and discouragement with you! We won't be needing them anymore.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Braiding class anyone?

Keslee, the little mama of the house, is always trying to "mother" her little sister. She loves to brush Kalysa's hair and try out different styles which usually means rubber bands tangled throughout and tons of every kind of barrette that she could find. The other day I heard the water running in the kitchen and went to check it out. I found Kalysa laying on the counter as Keslee washed her hair in the sink. This is something they both love for me to do but not something that we do often. After Keslee finished washing Kalysa's hair, she had her in the bathroom and was starting her styling session. I intervened and taught Keslee how to part the hair to avoid a tangled mess. That was ALL the help that she would allow from me and I was promptly sent out of the room when the part was complete. When she finally finished, Kalysa emerged looking normal(for lack of a better word) and Keslee was grinning ear to ear with her best grown up grin as we all ooohhhed and aaahhhed at her accomplishment.

I asked Keslee how she knew how to braid and she just said "you showed me mom". Thinking back, I have shown them both how to do it. I have shown them as they watch me do their sister's hair and many times I have helped fix a baby doll's hair but, although I often talk them through the tasks that they are watching me do, I have never set down and given them step by step direction in the how to's of braiding hair. I have never purposely had a hair braiding class with the intention of teaching. As far as I have ever seen, this is Keslee's first attempt to actually do it and I was amazed. This is another perfect example of why I believe homeschooling is soooo important. My girls will only learn to be a mother and a wife by seeing me do it. If they were at school all day while I was at work all day, how much mothery/wifey kinda stuff would they see? Not much in the 2-3 hours after work before bedtime that we would actually be able to spend together! Have I ever mentioned before that I LOVE HOMESCHOOLING!?!?

Friday, August 14, 2009

In LOVE with a bookcase

At church we have a guy, Brother David, that does great wood work. He built the sets for the Christmas program last year and has done most of the trim work in our new building. I half jokingly said something to him about building me a bookcase for my homeschool stuff and he quite seriously asked for a sketch and said he would love to do it. I did not have any particular design in mind but knew I wanted a 4 foot by 4 foot square and about 14-16 inches deep. Building is his passion and so I left any other design details up to him and this is what he came up with....

Isn't it beautiful!!??!! He had an extra sheet of maple wood left over from a previous job and within a week of us discussing it, I had a gorgeous new handmade homeschool bookshelf to the tune of $15. Yep, you heard that right, $15. That was his cost for the piece of wood and that is all he would charge me. I am totally in love with this piece of art and have plans running through my head on other projects I would love Brother David's help with.
I had to polyurethane it myself so it has been sitting empty for quite some time but I finally got it done last week. This week I have spent time cleaning, organizing, and purging my homeschool stuff. I got rid of our old barely staying together, walmart particle board, 15 year old bookcase and now all of our school stuff is nice and neat and all in one place. We normally "do school" at the kitchen table and this shelf is in a corner of the kitchen as well. Very convenient. The shelves look pretty full right now but I have things laid out and spread out for easy access but we actually have tons of space still available if I were to arrange things differently. The file cabinet will be used for storing the kids' notebooks, past and present. On top of the file cabinet is an over head projector that actually belongs to the church. Come to think of it, I really need to take it back. I used it for some drawings I made for the missions conference and keep forgetting it is here. I really wish I had one of my own, I could use it for soooo much. Under the projector is my box of scrapbooking and crafting supplies. It has been tucked away and forgotten in the laundry room so maybe now that it is more accessible we will use it more. The green basket barely visible in the bottom corner is our book basket for library books. Now that things are neat and organized I guess we better start thinking about starting some school.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Haven't the president and speaker of the house and others been reassuring us that the life ending, healthcare rationing talks that those crazy. Nazi, kkk member, conservatives have been talking about is nothing but fear mongering and hatred and there is no truth to these rumors? How, then, do they explain this story?
(AP) Key senators are excluding a provision on end-of-life care from
health overhaul legislation after language in a House bill caused a furor.
Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee,
said in a statement Thursday that the provision had been dropped from
consideration because it could be misinterpreted or implemented incorrectly. A
health care bill passed by three House committees allows Medicare to reimburse
doctors for voluntary counseling sessions about end-of-life decisions. But
critics have claimed the provision could lead to death panels and euthanasia for
seniors. The Senate Finance Committee is still working to complete a bill.

Kinda hard to take something out if it was never there to begin with!


Barbies in a world of technology

I overheard my girls while they were playing Barbies. Keslee had the Gabriella(from high school musical) doll and Kalysa had G I Joe.

Kalysa: Gabriella! Gabriella!

Keslee: How do you know my name? I don't know you. I have never met you before.

Kalysa: Oh, well I accidentally read your blog.

Oh, they crack me up!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Coincidence? I think not!

Meteor showers have been all the rage around here the last few days. My son has his telescope ready and has been waiting all week to see the showers. Unfortunately, we had a stormy rainy day yesterday with lingering clouds last night and we didn't get to see anything. Today is dry and clear so hopefully we will be able to see some tonight.

So thinking about the meteors and talking with my friend about how awesome it is to see these things and experience God's creation with our children has got me to thinking about the fact that we know exactly when and where these things happen every year. Meteor showers, comets, eclipses-all these space age phenomenons are on a schedule. Scientist and astrologers know when and where these events are going to occur. We can prepare for them. There is order in the universe. Evolution tells us that our world and everything in it happened all by chance but now, all of a sudden, things are so controlled that we know exactly when things are gonna fall from the sky because it happens in the same area at the same time of year over and over for hundreds of years of recorded history? Chaos has never created control in my personal life so why would I ever believe it happened that way for the universe.

Yeah! Just What She Said!

This whole healthcare reform bill is really scary. I have not had the chance to read the whole thing but I do have a link to it that I can go back to as time permits. What I have read is frightening and dare I say evil. Our president is telling the citizens to stop listening to the protesters and the conservative radio hosts and basically just listen to him. Every time I hear Obama talk he sounds more and more like Big Brother and I don't like it. It just amazes me that anyone would still put one ounce of trust in this guy. I am telling ya, the majority of the remarks I have heard from protesters of Obama's healthcare reform are RIGHT ON. Their objections come straight from the words in this bill and Obama is lying to people that have not and probably will not read it for themselves. Redink has a terrific post about the difference in gaining information and actually applying knowledge. More Americans need to start applying some knowledge to their decisions instead of just soaking up information and calling themselves smart. You can make an educated decision on this bill without having to read all 1200 or so pages of it if you just apply the principles redink has spelled out for us. Please head on over and read what she has to say because she has laid it all out perfectly-way better than I would be able to.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Nakedness and the Christian child

WARNING: I am sure this entire post is going into the "way too much information" category and if I had one of those popular blogs that got about 100 hits a day I may not even tell this story but it was so extremely funny I just could not resist sharing. I doubt that I have any men readers but just in case, this may be one you would rather skip. Ok-maybe a lot of you women would rather skip this one as well but I don't want to forget it and so I am documenting it more for myself and Keslee-ya know, to put in her "to embarrass you when your older" file.

So here is the story. It all started on Saturday evening when I decided to do some mowing. I got the grass cut and came inside hot, sweaty, itchy, and with a heat headache. I took a cool shower and got all cleaned up and decided to lay down-in my own room-with the door shut-under the ceiling fan to cool off for a while. I am laying there-in all my glory- and turned the tv on to find that the picture tube had gone out or something and all I had was a white line across the screen. About that time, Keslee, my little mama who has never had any problem understanding the whys of modesty and will try to distract her brother in the grocery store if she sees a girl with too short shorts on so he will not be exposed to such a thing, walked into my room and-seeing all my glory-said(in her best motherly scolding voice...and she has got that voice down good yall...I mean her kids will never have to wonder if she is serious or not)"Mother! What do you think your doing?!" I said "I am just cooling off, just shut the door." She then asked what was wrong with the tv and I said I wasn't sure, I would have daddy check it to see if he could fix it or if it was just done for and broken for good. With that she left my room, closing the door behind her. She then proceeded to go tell daddy that the tv in our room wasn't working and he needed to go fix it and (same scolding motherly voice)"DON'T LOOK AT MAMA WHEN YOU GO IN THERE BECAUSE SHE IS naked!" Well hearing that, like any man in the same situation, he hopped up and headed straight to our room shutting (and locking) the door behind him and started trying to figure out what was wrong with that tv. After just a few minutes, it was apparent that nothing he did was getting any part of a picture back on the screen so he gave up on the tv. Realizing that mom AND dad are now in the room, Keslee begins knocking on the door and a barrage of questions follows; "MAMA!? Did you put your clothes on yet?!" .knock .knock .knock.. " Daddy, what are you doing in there." knock.knock.knock.. " Daddy I NEED you to come out here!"knock.knock.knock..." Daddy, did mama get dressed yet?" knock.knock.knock... " Mama, what are you doing? Did Daddy fix the tv? Are you done daddy? Mama is daddy finished with the tv? Daddy will you come play with me? Mama, are you done with daddy?" We assured her several times that every thing was just fine and she could continue to play with the Dora doll house with Kalysa, mom and dad could have some private time and talk and she did not need to keep checking on us. After several minutes, she finally rejoined her sister to play.

So this would have been funny enough but you know I could not leave well enough alone so there is more to the story.

The next day I kept thinking about my sweet daughter and her concern for her daddy seeing her mama with no clothes on. I know several people that were raised in a christian home and their whole life they were told that seeing someone of the opposite sex with little or no clothes on was "dirty" and then when they get married they are told it is now "good" and this has caused some confusion and some problems in the intimacy department. I don't want that same fate for my children so I decided I better talk to Keslee about the events of the day before. After church and lunch I got Keslee alone and told her I needed to talk to her about yesterday. The conversation went something like this....
Me: You know that it is not good to show off our bodies and that is why we don't wear real short skirts or shorts or shirts that show our bellies, right?
Kes: Right.
Me: God made women with pretty, curvy bodies and God made men to like looking at pretty women. It is not right for men to see every woman's body and it is not right for a woman to show every man her body but God had a special idea for married people. If a girl does what she should and does not show off her body to men even if she sometimes wants to and a man does what he should and does not look at women's bodies even though he sometimes wants to, when they get married they can see each other's bodies and it will be very special because nobody else ever gets to see that. Only the husband gets to see his wife and she can show off her body only for her husband. God made Adam in the garden and then he made Eve to be his wife and the Bible says that they were naked and they were not embarrassed.
Kes: Why not?
Me: because they were married. They were husband and wife. All husbands and wives need to be able to have some private time. They need to spend time alone and that helps them to have a good and happy marriage. Sometimes Daddy and I need to have some private time and you don't have to worry about what we are doing.
Kes: So you are gonna be NAKED every time you have PRIVATE time!?!?
Me: No! Not every time. Daddy and I need private time to talk about grown up things and just spend time together but if I ever am naked, you don't have to worry about daddy seeing me because he is my husband. We are married. God made marriage very special. Do you understand?
Kes: Yes but mama...
Me: what ...
Kes: I think YOU are just a little TOO EXCITED TO SEE DADDY NAKED!!!

and with that she was finished with our talk. Now, I know that I will mess my kids up in one way or another, actually it will probably be a lot more than ONE way, every parent does and I just pray that God will help repair any damage I may inadvertently and unintentionally do. I just wish I could tell when it was happening. I just don't know if I helped her at all this time or totally traumatized her for life. This parenting thing is tuff. I guess we will find out in about 15 years or so when she gets married.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Children's Festival

Several churches in town put on a children's festival last weekend on Friday evening and all day Saturday. It was all free and there were games and rides and face painting and clowns and Bible stories and even free hamburgers, hot dogs, popcorn and snow cones. Well any mother knows how much a night of not having to cook is really worth so we were there. The kids had a TOTAL blast with 2 days of good clean fun and play. Ok, so maybe it wasn't all clean-they also had a section set up with water guns, a slip and slide, a blow up water slide, and a huge tarp covered in dish soap and sprayed with a water hose to slide around on. I convinced the kids to save the water play until just before we were ready to leave each day so they were not running around in dripping wet clothes while they enjoyed the other activities. Here are some pictures from our fun.

Keslee waiting for her balloon lady bug.

Kalysa got a balloon flower. For some reason we did not get a picture of it until after we got home and they had already changed out of their wet clothes.

Kenyon went for the hat and he also had a balloon sword to go with it. One of the clowns did some magic tricks and demonstrated to the kids how Jesus was not in the tomb with a disappearing dice in a box. It was a pretty cool trick.
They had tons of carnival type games. Here is Keslee trying to toss a ring around a sucker.

Kenyon was pretty good at this and played it several times.

Kalysa's rings kinda went every which way but on a sucker but she still had fun. They also did things like skee ball, a bull's eye toss, bean bag toss and lots of other games.

Every third or forth booth was a Bible story booth. Here is a picture of Keslee throwing ping pong balls at Goliath to see if she would be able to hit him right in the forehead on the first try like David did.

Here is Kalysa jumping in the bouncy thingy. I never have really know what the technical name for those are but I am betting yall all know what a bouncy thingy is. Notice the remains of as many as you want free snow cones down the front of her shirt:)

One of the big highlights of the day for the girls was the huge blow up slide. They must have gone down this thing a thousand times. It looks like so much fun. Why didn't they have these things when we were kids?!?
They also had a blow up obstacle course for two kids to race. It was so much fun to watch them running, and diving over obstacles. Poor Kalysa is just a little to short and had a few problems trying to get over them. She always ended up landing head first.

Keslee probably could have beat Kalysa if she wasn't stopping to make sure Kalysa got over everything. She is such a good big sister and didn't want to leave Kalysa behind. After they top this wall, there was another big slide to go down to finish the race.

Besides just the games they also had a petting zoo. Kalysa was pretty intimidated by the animals even though they were all small but she did soften up to the baby donkey. When the mama donkey came over, she started crying because "she was gettin too close!"

Kenyon spent so much time with this llama that the owner finally gave him the food and he spent a long time feeding him.
Keslee could have spent hours in here with these little donkeys. She also loved the baby goat and the calf and is now ready for us to move to the country and start getting some farm animals. I am all for that as well but I don't really see it in the near future. Keslee has started praying for this so ya never know what God may do.

Next to the petting zoo was a pony ride. My kids LOVE to ride horses but haven't had the opportunity much lately.

Here is Keslee looking oh so happy atop that horse.

It is really a good thing that this is not a large horse because when I was helping Kalysa on, the horse stepped on the leaders foot. When the guy pushed the horse to get him off his foot, the horse jumped back and to the side and stepped on my foot. I said "OWWWWW" which scared the horse and he did a little hop off of my foot but with Kalysa already sitting on his back so she was just a little nervous about the rest of the ride. She did just fine and so did the horse!

They even had something for the parents.....FREE SCHOOL SUPPLIES!
Each kid got a sack so we got 3 boxes of colors and 3 scissors, lots of pencils, erasers, some paint, some markers, several folders and spiral notebooks and plenty of glue sticks. They also had drawings for prizes and Keslee won the Pixos and Kenyon won a toy rocket.
We also got several free boxes of Kleenex and bottles of hand sanitizer. You got one for each child you signed up for a drawing. Monty came for awhile on Saturday and didn't know I had already signed the kids up so he did it as well. I can ALWAYS use Kleenex around here:)
Each game, ride or Bible story the kids participated in awarded them tickets that they were able to redeem for prizes. They each got color books, hacky sacks. frisbees, parachute men, bracelets little animals, suckers, and the girls got little batons. The kids had so much fun and look forward to the children's festival each year.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

I LOVE a rainy night

I love a rainy night
I love to hear the thunder, watch the lightning as it lights up the sky!
Ya know it makes me feel good.

And it also makes me sing a little song. :) I have always loved rainy stormy thunderry nights-or days. I even like the tornadoy stormy days(those I do prefer in the day so we can see and keep track of them.). They just fill me with energy and excitement and I love to see God's power on full display for all to witness. This is one area that my husband and I could not be farther apart on. HE HATES THEM! He hates lightning so bad that he cringes with each flash and jumps with each thunder crash. There was a time that storms would almost render him useless when it came to driving. He would try to hang around where ever he was and wait for the storm to pass to avoid driving in rain or lightning. If we were together he would pull his hat over his eyes while I drove and object to every "WOW! Look at how beautiful that one was!" comment that I made along the way. He does much better now but he still doesn't like them. I can't really blame him for his dislike of storms, his mom is the same way and she is the one that raised him. She will not go anywhere if the weather is very bad and never would ever dream of driving when there is snow or ice on the ground. Monty never had the chance to learn to drive in bad weather because it was not allowed. She passed her fears onto her son. Now that he is the leader and sole provider for our family and it is not really possible for him to stay home during every storm, he has really taken his fear by the horns and conquered it. He still doesn't LIKE them but he can handle them. I am really very proud of the way he handles them now. To see him go from being almost crippled by a fear when we first met to driving to work and home during rain, sleet, snow, or even some ice is amazing. It really shows how much he loves his family and puts us ahead of the fears he has had since he was a child. I never wanted my son to be afraid of storms. To ensure he did not inherit this fear, when Kenyon was little I would hold him and stand at the door during storms and watch them with him. I would point out the beauty of it all. Kenyon would watch and listen but he never really gained the love of the storm that I had. He did not have a problem watching them when he was in mama's arms but any other time he would run for cover at the first hint of bad weather. Over the past few years Kenyon has really developed a respect for God's stormy nights. He is usually glued to the weather reports on tv and keeps everyone else updated with each new development. He is my most cautious one, so at the first weather alert he is gathering pillows in the hall way, making sure everyone has their shoes on and equips himself and his sisters with bicycle helmets BEFORE he plants himself in front of the meteorologists weather maps on screen. He loves to watch the storm chaser team's live videos and has even made a comment or two about maybe wanting to do that someday. He has a certain type of love for the storm but it is still wrapped in a certain amount of fear of it. Last night he had the breakthrough that I always hoped for. When we were leaving church the sky was very dark and cloudy. That is, all but one patch to the northeast (the direction we would be traveling home). That one patch was filled with very light, white clouds and the most spectacular lightning show was going on. The flashes were so constant that it looked like God must have hooked up a strobe light right there. It was mostly cloud to cloud flashes with just the occasional huge bolt breaking free and heading for the ground. When I came out of the church to head to the car I found my son in the parking lot just staring and watching the power of God unfold before his eyes. He said "MOM! LOOK HOW BEAUTIFUL THAT IS!" We all watched for a moment and then loaded up knowing we would be able to enjoy the show for the next 20 minutes on the ride home. As we were driving down the road with trees lining each side, the flashes would light up between the branches and the trees would seem to glow for an instant. It was really an amazing sight. Kenyon said "Mom, I was always kinda scared of storms and I could never see the beauty in it you always talked about-UNTIL NOW!" That sentence uttered from my little boys mouth probably made me prouder than just about any other sentence he has ever said. Not just because of the kindred spirit he and I can now share. Not even because his love of the storm just bypassed his fear of them. It made me proud because of what he finally saw in the storm. God's majesty is revealed through His creation and I believe seeing the beauty and majesty in creation....I mean REALLY seeing it....not just appreciating it... but SEEING it all the way to your soul is the closest we can ever come this side of Heaven to seeing God's face. My son just saw GOD with his own eyes! It was an amazing experience to see as this revelation showed across the face of an eleven year old boy while the reflection of lightning flashes danced in his eyes. I am so thankful I was able to witness it.
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