Wednesday, August 29, 2012

And They're Off..........!

Joe and David are off to the Grand Canyon!  This has been planned since last spring, not only to enjoy the Canyon, but for Joe and David to get away at the height of allergy season!  The last time our family went to the Grand Canyon was in 2004 - and David was only only four.  So he is due a great time with Dad and a hike on the Bright Angel Trail! 

Here is an aerial view of the trail.  The Bright Angel Trail descends 4,380 feet into the bottom of the canyon..............but they will not be going that far!  They are loaded down with lots of water, plenty of snacks, and multiple layers of clothing.

So for those of you who have never visited The Grand Canyon, put that on your list of vacation spots!  The testimony to God's creation is evident and the beauty that surrounds you is awe-inspiring.  The Canyon at sunset is truly something to see.

So have a great father - son time..................and don't forget to pick up Rachel on your way back!

Monday, August 27, 2012

What We're Reading Around Here

Isaac and Joshua LOVE to go the library!  We have always promoted a love of reading around our home and the wee boys are following suit.  They enjoy preschool story time each week with all of the stories and songs. 

So off we went the other day to get a week's worth of books.  They were so excited to find another book in the "Oliver and Amanda Pig" series.  The older children read these over and over when they were young - Rachel, especially, had a love for Amanda Pig!
Joshua, especially, is very content to sit and look and books for quite some time. Both boys love to have books read to them until Mom gets weary!  Now David.............he's another story!  This boy would read twelve hours a day if we would let him.  He loves history, strategy, and anything military.  We are convinced he will be a four-star general some day!

Now, as for myself, I have loved to read for many years and love to collect my favorite books.  When we were at the library the other day, I was browsing in the children's section and came across one of my all-time favorite books when I was in fifth and sixth parents will recognize this book for sure! 

So, I checked this book out to read and see why this was so intriguing to my ten and eleven year old mind.  (Disclaimer:  I would not necessarily recommend this book as it involves a girl who spies on people, writes it all down, and eventually gets found out!)  I finished it last night.............and can't really explain the draw it had on me.  But hey, it was a good trip down memory lane!

One of the BEST books I have read recently is "Ribbon of Years" by Robin Lee Hatcher.  Oh my, this resonated with me and I bought my own copy to add to my collection.  It is the story of a young woman beginning around age 15 and follows her joys, trials, and triumphs through her life as she ages.  Really a great read.

Now for a really great non-fiction book that I read recently - "Mrs. Kennedy and Me".  This was a wonderful account of the Kennedy years and what life was like in the White House, written by Jackie Kennedy's personal body guard.

I would love to know what you're reading and what your favorite books are!  Maybe I will start a side-bar that lists my favorite books!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Family Ties

We have had, and are having, big changes in our family.  People are going all over the place these days.  Anyway, with Courtney off to college and Jonathan headed to the Navy, we decided that some family photos were in order.  So a couple of weeks ago, we headed to the park to see what we could get.................with eight people (two of them not overly cooperative because of their age), a camera and a tripod.

Rachel had previously taken the two little boys out for a photo shoot one afternoon when they were both in uncharacteristically good moods and got some really great shots.

So overall some really great pictures, don't you think?  I look at the four oldest and can hardly believe that these large children are ours.  It doesn't seem that long ago that they were all the same size as Isaac and Joshua!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Rachel at Summit

Rachel continues to have a wonderful time in Colorado.  Today's photo is of their group, taken yesterday, at the Garden of the Gods!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Post #2 for Monday

Two posts in one day - I must  be getting really good at this! Rachel has checked in several times during her free time, and she is thoroughly enjoying her stay at Summit.  She says the age range is from about 16 to 24 and the students are from varying states and even some are from Canada.  She reports that the teaching is phenomenal and the food is restaurant quality.  So far so good!  She sent me a picture this afternoon from her phone - Rachel and one of her roommates as they were all touring The Garden of the Gods.  Our family went there a number of years ago and it is spectacular.

A Trip to Phoenix

Rachel took off yesterday for the Summit Ministries conference in Colorado Springs.  Talk about excited! Her flight was out of Phoenix and I have never been to the airport before in my life - and remember, this is a metro area of over four million people!  I was concerned about getting her there on time..........and safely.

My dear friend, Beth, who I have known since I was 15, happens to live in the Phoenix area and came to my rescue.  She agreed that driving to the airport was a nightmare of confusion and heavy traffic.  We decided to meet at a McDonald's south of town and then she became my navigator and additional pair of eyes as we headed to the Sky Harbor Airport.  Thank you, Beth!

Once we got Rachel dropped off at the airport, we went back to the McDonald's and let the little boys have much needed play time on the inside equipment.  They had a blast playing and it allowed Beth and me to have uninterrupted chat time.  David enjoyed playing the video games there, too. Can you believe how tall he has gotten?  He is definitely having a growth spurt. Not the best photo of me, but hey...........I had been up since 4:45 am!

All in all, it was a wonderful easier drive than expected, Rachel deposited at the airport without incident, and a great time of fellowship with a long-time friend!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

A Different Perspective

Our very dear friends, the R. family from California, noticed how much Isaac and Joshua loved Connor's binoculars during their last visit here.  Well, guess what came in the mail a few days ago?  Isaac and Joshua were beyond excited to open their package and and see their very own binoculars.  Each picked out a sticker to put on the top of them so no mix-ups will ever happen!

Half of the time they were looking out of the wrong end of the  binoculars and I know they were not adjusted clearly, but wow.................they had a blast going outside and looking at things!  Joshua wouldn't look at the camera because he said the sun hurt his eyes.  Hmmmmmm, today we have the most cloud cover we have had in a long time!

Thank you so much, R. Family, for making two little boys feel so special!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Excitement and Sadness

My goodness, have we been busy around here.  It seems as if almost every day there is some kind of appointment or commitment.  Here is an update on the progeny..........and what they are doing.

Courtney is heading off to the University of Alabama at Huntsville next week!  She has a full tuition scholarship and is planning on majoring in business.  We have been shopping, going through lists, and setting aside all of those essentials that any college girl needs.  It doesn't seem that long ago that my best friend, Beth, and I were having fun shopping for our freshman year at Colorado State and the University of Kansas, respectively.  Those were fun times and Courtney is going to experience the same!

Rachel is heading off to Manitou Springs, Colorado, to attend a two week session of Summit Ministries! She will be hearing lots of good teaching from wonderful Christian speakers and participate in some Rachel-stretching outdoor activities!! They show pictures of kids white water rafting, hiking Pike's Peak............but all of those are optional!! We'll see what she does! Here is what the website says:

Summit Ministries is an educational Christian ministry whose very existence is a response to our current post-Christian culture. Today, countless Christian youth have fallen victim to the popular ideas of our modern world. Most have adopted these ideas into their own worldview, while still others go on to renounce their Christian faith altogether.
Summit views its role in God’s kingdom as a catalyst to counteract this alarming trend. However, our ultimate goal supersedes simply training. As Christians are challenged to stand strong in their faith and defend truth, they will also be equipped to have a positive influence on the society in which they live."

Jonathan is heading off to the Navy!  It's been a goal of his for quite some time and he has been working hard for it. We went to the Navy Recruiting Office today and spent quite a bit of time talking about options, time frames, etc.  He took a practice ASVAB test and scored an 82!  That's a percentile ranking, which means he scored higher than 82% of others who take the test.  The recruiter told us that the average score of young men coming in to enlist is a 19..........unbelievable.  So, hurray for homeschooling!  He takes the "real" ASVAB on Thursday, finishes up some paperwork, and then heads to Phoenix in several weeks to make everything official. Then, once he turns 18, he is off! baby boy in the Navy?

David is in the throws of school.  He is a good student, but needs to apply himself more.  He has been taking piano lessons from our pastor and is doing really well.  David is my only "active" homeschool student at this time.............and he doesn't like it one bit!  But it's been nice to hear him play the piano and make significant progress!  We do like him to get his violin out now and again and hear him play with Rachel.

Isaac and Joshua are learning and discovering new things every day.  Their newest question, which I hear about 50 times per day, regarding any animal or insect, is "Is it ferocious?"  I'm not sure where they learned the word ferocious, but if we read a story about a penguin, lamb, deer, bumble bee, etc., we have to discuss if it is ferocious or not.  If we have flies buzzing around the kitchen, we must have reassurance that they are not ferocious.  So I have had to tell the boys that we really don't have ferocious animals around our house - thank goodness!

So that's what is going on at our house.  Joe and me?  Well, we are trying to adjust to all of the changes that come with having adult children.  Did I mention before that I don't like change?  It will be sad to have two of our children so far away, but time moves on. But these are good times and I pray for the Lord's blessings on all of our children.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

What is your American accent?

Well, this is very interesting!  I took this test and my results were "Midland".  Considering I have spent the majority of my life in the Midwest, this is perfectly normal!  The Southern drawl and the New York  accents are the most distinctive, I think.  I can also tell if someone is from Canada or the upper Midwest.  There is something about their "o's" .........I can't really describe it but the word "about" sounds sort of like "aboot". 

But back to the some people really think that "feel" and "fill" sound the same?  Or that the words "dawn" and "don" sound totally different?  Not to me, but that's my Midwest accent coming through.

How about you?  What is your accent?  I'd love to hear your results!

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Midland
"You have a Midland accent" is just another way of saying "you don't have an accent." You probably are from the Midland (Pennsylvania, southern Ohio, southern Indiana, southern Illinois, and Missouri) but then for all we know you could be from Florida or Charleston or one of those big southern cities like Atlanta or Dallas. You have a good voice for TV and radio.
The West
North Central
The Inland North
The South
The Northeast
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz