Wednesday, April 30, 2008
I predict in 110 days...yes, that means 10 days late...that she will arrive.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Back to dip.
The easiest most delicious recipe to dip fruit in, is this:
Let cream cheese soften. Mix equal parts of both fluff and cream cheese.
It's that easy.
"Mommy, mommy...guess what?"
"We're watching Pink Panther...and the name of the show is Pink Piper."
"Well, Pink Piper is JUST LIKE John Piper!!!"
I love my little six year old!
Washington Times Op-ed—California May Ban Spanking
by J. Michael Smith
It’s often said that California is a trendsetter. Ideas that begin in California have a habit of making their way across the country.
Currently, many families have been alarmed at the recent California Court of Appeal ruling that prohibits homeschooling unless the parent is a certified teacher.
In just 10 days, more than 250,000 people signed the Home School Legal Defense Association petition opposing this decision. Not all these families were homeschoolers. James Dobson of Focus on the Family says the ruling was an “all-out assault on the family.”
The good news is that the Court of Appeal has granted a request for a rehearing of its decision on homeschooling, which by law, automatically vacates the decision, meaning it’s no longer binding.
The court has solicited a number of public school establishment organizations to submit amicus briefs, including the California Superintendent of Public Instruction, the California Department of Education, the Los Angeles Unified School District, and three California teachers unions.
Although there is no guarantee the outcome will be different after the rehearing, The homeschool community welcomes the opportunity to file an amicus brief advocating that the court retain the current method of homeschooling in California through the private school exemption.
Just when things seemed to be settling down in California, on April 3, Assembly Bill 2943 was introduced by assembly member Sally Lieber. This bill would have the practical effect of making a noninjurious spanking with an object such as a ruler, folded newspaper or small paddle illegal in California. The bill is identical to Assembly Bill 755, which failed to pass the assembly last year.
This bill amends Penal Code section 273(a), which makes it a crime to cause unjustifiable pain, harm or injury to any minor child. If the bill passes, spanking with an object such as a stick, rod or switch would be lumped in with throwing, kicking, burning, or cutting a child.
Striking a child with a fist. Striking a child under 3 years of age on the face or head. Vigorously shaking of a child under 3 years of age. Interfering with a child’s breathing. Brandishing a deadly weapon upon a child. These are all factors that a jury could use to conclude that a defendant in a criminal case has inflicted unjustifiable physical pain or mental suffering.
What the bill would do is to equate discipline administered via an implement with the above conduct, which obviously is abusive behavior toward a child.
This likely will have several negative unjustifiable consequences in California. Prosecutors could end up filing criminal charges against parents for simply spanking their children with an object even though reasonable, age-appropriate corporal discipline is a protected right of parents in every state.
Secondly, by the mere fact that jurors in criminal cases would be instructed that they could consider spanking with an implement to be criminal conduct would imply that the legislature believes that this type of conduct is abusive conduct. Finally, if this law passes, it will have a chilling effect on parents who reasonably exercise discipline through the use of spanking with an implement.
Although this is not a homeschool issue, it is a parental rights issue. One of the foundations for the right to homeschool is based upon the fundamental right of parents to direct the upbringing and education of their children.
The erosion of parental rights is a dangerous trend. If California continues to push to have homeschooling parents be certified teachers and limit heretofore well-established disciplinary tools of parents, it will be asserting the view that the state knows what’s best for children, thereby limiting the authority of parents to raise their children in a responsible way.
Defending parental rights is apparently going to be an uphill battle in California. Now is the time to take a look at amending the U.S. Constitution to protect parental rights.
Found on Home School Legal Defense Association.
Well, we watched it last night. There were good points and there were low points.
Here is the problem we had with it...Within a few days, a revival on school grounds took place. The football team that had been 0-3 up until that point, began winning games. They were careful to say that 'God gets the praise if we win, and God gets the praise if we lose'. I have no problem with that...but for the rest of the movie, only good things happened.
Here are a few examples:
*The football team won the rest of their games and made it to state and won that too.
*The coach was given a new truck because of the effect he had on his team and the school.
*The coach and his wife were infertile for years, and all of a sudden were pregnant...and ended up with two children.
*At the end, they show two trophies from states...looks like the team kept on winning through the next season.
They continued to say that even in disappointments, God would get the glory. There was a repeated use of Scripture "With God, all things are possible". It didn't take long for the movie to sound like the health and wealth gospel. At the beginning, faith was weak...and when faith was strengthened, good things started happening...and just never stopped.
The overall message was good, but in all reality, there were some dangerous undertones that kinda turned us off. There is no such thing as 'if you think positively then good things will happen to you', yet that seemed to be the central theme.
Oh, and the acting and script left much to be desired. The best scene in this movie is the one in this post. Save yourself an hour and a half and watch the 6 minute clip.
Monday, April 28, 2008
Saturday, April 26, 2008
The winner Treasuring God in Our Traditions is Kristy! Here's what she said:
My favorite non-fiction author is Martha Peace. I love the fact that she doesn't mix words. She tells it just like the Scripture says it without watering it down.
The winner of The Roots of Endurance by John Piper is DidiLyn at Meyers on the Hood! Here's what she said:
Oh, I would love these books. My favorite non-fiction author is Charles Spurgeon. He reminds us of the basics of the faith with passion, and cuts to the heart of the matter.
The winner of The Mortification of Sin by John Owen is Eddie at Heavy Poetry! Here's what he said:
My favorite author is hands down, without-a-doubt, John Piper. For a few reasons. (1)He has done more for me than any other author in helping me understand that God HIMSELF IS The Gospel. He taught me that I can be an idoloter by prefering the gifts above the Giver. Now, the goal of my faith is no longer merely heaven, reunion with deceased loved ones, and the end of pain and suffering, but he has taught me to cherish Jesus Christ specifically. No one else in all evangelicalism has even come close to explaining that reality to me.
(2)He is my favorite author because he has taught me to "Dont waste your life" He taught me that I don't have to be handsome, smart, rich, strong, or priviledged in order for me to make my life count for eternity.
(3)He has given me an unshakable theology on Suffering and the Sovereignty of God, so that when/if that season comes, hopefully and prayerfully, by God's grace, I will be ready (and also sustained through it because he has helped teach me that when Christ is valued above all things as my supreme treasure, that "dying is gain").
(4)He is the modern day equivalent of Jonathan Edwards and has done more for the awakening of religious affections in my heart than anyone I know. Piper is not just academic and intellectual, but he heart and passion... he is "light & heat".
And lastly, (5) He taught me that the best way to fight sin, is to fight sin with a superior pleasure... namely, Christ Himself. I thank God for "Battling Unbelief"
These are just a few of my reasons!But I will keep it short, LOL!
Congratulations to the winners!
Thursday, April 24, 2008
With all that's in the news about BPA leaking into our drinks, I found that Playtex is giving away a FREE sample of the Playtex®Drop-Ins® Original Nurser System, which are BPA-free.
Just go here and fill out the form, and you'll receive your free gift in the mail!
There is a well-done review from the Pulpit Magazine found here.
What I thought the movie did best, was that it began dispelling the myth that in order to believe there was an Intelligent Designer, you have to be a religious fanatic. I have found in my own conversations and mini-debates on the subject, once a person knows you are a Christian, they begin attacking your beliefs as nonsense, rather than the issue at hand.
I think that it's important to see that there are many scientists out there, who are not necessarily religious, who have huge issues with evolution. It almost gives more credence to the subject.
Now, don't expect to take your evolution-believing friend to this movie and have their opinions change by the time you walk out of the theater. I also wouldn't expect a republican to enter a Michael Moore film and be a democrat by the end.
The movie is worth seeing, and I would love to hear your feedback on it!
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Today, I painted four 16x20 pictures of, what I like to call, 'whimsical flowers'. The only thing left for me to do is buy some sort of sealer to spray on them.
When you add it up...cost for 4 blank canvas 5.99x2=11.98, cost of paintbrushes 4.99, cost of paint maybe 5.00 (with lots of leftover for your next project!)...Total=$22.00 (rounding up!). That's not bad considering just one 15x15 canvas artwork from Pottery Barn Kids is $69.00 a piece!
Because my boys wanted in on the painting action, they each painted one butterfly for Payson's room. The butterflies were also from Michael's for .99 cents a piece.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Aside from that, we have everything we need, but I wanted to hang some stuff up on the walls, etc. I was able to find some Pottery Barn Kids curtains for about 2/3 off! I also got a Pottery Barn crib bumper and crib skirt from ebay for about $20.
This morning, I went to Michaels in search of ideas. I ended up buying 2 packs of 2 blank 16x20 canvas' for only $5.99 a piece! I then went to Walmart and got some paint and brushes (since they are much cheaper than Michaels for this!). At Walmart, they also had some cute little flower hooks that are made of wood, that just need to be painted.
I'm excited to get started and paint! I'll be sure to show you, when her room is finished.
There are definitely ways to decorate a room by doing it yourself. What mom doesn't enjoy a few art projects?
Sunday, April 20, 2008
For those that might not know...I'm pregnant. This means that after 20 weeks of morning sickness, I really haven't been sewing very much. Now that the nauseau has subsided, my energy level with my four little boys and this little girl in-utero really isn't allowing me to stay up late at night to make a new creation for you to ooh and aah over.
This brings me to my giveaway!
I just recently attended Together for the Gospel in Louisville, KY. If you know anything about this conference....you get books...lots and lots of BOOKS!
In the spirit of T4G...I am going to giveaway some BOOKS!!!
Book Giveaway #1:
Treasuring God in Our Traditions
Only God can bequeath God to our children. But he uses means. He uses God-centered traditions and Bible-saturated family patterns and grace-laden heirlooms.
Only God can give our children a taste for the sweetness of God. Only God can awaken them to his worth. But year in and year out there are traditions that show them: God is our Treasure.
After more than 30 years of marriage and childrearing, Noël Piper opens her home to you. She invites you into the happy, imperfect Piper pattern of life. Come with her and enjoy the way she helps us treasure God in our traditions.
Book Giveaway #2:
The Roots of Endurance by John Piper
Invincible Perseverance in the Lives of John Newton, Charles Simeon, and William Wilberforce
The Swans are Not Silent: Book Three
Bitterness and frustration tempt everyone who endures opposition or slander or rejection. It's hard not to give in. And if adversity continues for a long time (even decades) is there hope for perseverance? Will we find the grace to finish the race?
In this third volume of The Swans Are Not Silent series, John Piper examines the lives of John Newton, Charles Simeon, and William Wilberforce. These three extraordinary men are examples of deep and joyful maturity in the face of life-long opposition. They were sinners like us. But they refused to yield to bitterness. With the centrality of the cross as the root of their endurance, they grew downward in humility and upward in adoration for Christ. Their God-centered, Christ-exalting, cross-focused perseverance inspire us to press on through hardship and finish the race set before us.
Book Giveaway #3:
The Mortification of Sin by John Owen
Here is what a reader says about it:
I usually give a book a month or more to ruminate so I can weigh the value of its contents against all that I have learned from scripture, but in this one case I'm breaking that rule. I swear John Owen just drove the sword of the Spirit into the very midst of my still-beating heart like a surgeon's scalpel. This book is life-changing. It is biblical, powerful, relevant and Spirit-filled. Owen has made all the questions which lingered in my mind with regard to sanctification and the means by which we are to pursue holiness by the power of the Holy Spirit suddenly coalesce into a coherent, scriptural, practical, spiritual whole. In 130 pages (Puritan Paperback edition) he did this! And how foolish I feel for not having seen it all before when it is so clear and simple and plainly biblical!
All you need to do is this:
*Leave me a comment on who your favorite non-fiction author is and why!
*Make sure you leave me a way to get in touch with you if you are one of the winners!
*By commenting once...you are automatically entered to win each of the books!
*This Giveaway will close on April 25th at 8pm...the winners will be emailed and announced soon after!
Be sure to check out all the other giveaways by clicking on the Giveaway button
at the top of the page!
THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED
After four rowdy little boys...we have been given the blessing of a soft-spoken delicate little girl? (Well, if she's anything like me, she'll be soft-spoken and delicate, lol)
Last weekend, as I flipped through the channels, I saw that Father of the Bride parts 1&2 was on.
I stopped the flipping and began watching.
It took all of about 15 seconds for George (Steve Martin's character) to begin talking about being the father of the bride. Which really shouldn't surprise you...I mean, come on, look at the title of the movie!
John quickly told me to change the channel.
Why, you might ask???
Because he was starting to get weepy, thinking that one day, he has the privilege to be that father of the bride. (If she doesn't elope or something crazy like we did!)
When the second movie began...he still wanted me to change the channel. Just seeing the dad play basketball with his little girl, was about to put him into a sea of sobs.
I found it incredibly sweet, and it made my heart grow just a little bit bigger for this sentimental man that I love.
Now, let me premise this by saying that he LOVES his Diet Mountain Dew. I'm not sure how much he drinks a day, but let me say this: he should probably own stock in it.
John came up with the idea to get pictures taken with as many speakers as possible...holding a Diet Mt Dew bottle. It may have been his idea...but it took my courage to actually go up to some theological greats, to ask them to do this!
My first opportunity came Wednesday morning. John had run back to our hotel to get something. I was standing near the front, within a few feet of Al Mohler. A few minutes later...John Piper walked right by me. Without even thinking twice, I said "Excuse me...could you do me a favor? You see, my pastor couldn't make it, and since he loves Diet Mt Dew, we thought it would be fun to get pictures of as many speakers as possible holding the bottle."
He laughed and readily agreed. He even made sure that you could read the words on the bottle. This is what I call being culturally relevant...wouldn't you say?
Now, I mentioned that Al Mohler was closeby...when I had my chance, I asked him the same thing. He looked at me, smiled (I swear he is the most intimidating man EVER!) and said "Sure...just tell your pastor that I don't drink this stuff!"
Doesn't he look like it is almost painful to hold the bottle? (we later found out he drinks Diet Pepsi...so it isn't like he thinks the stuff is poison!)
For lunch, we ate at the Spaghetti Factory...and who did we see? The great Tim Challies! I figured, heck, let's get a shot of him too!
That evening, after the speakers, we were in the bookstore. Thabiti Anyabwile and his wife entered and were nice enough to get a picture taken! He was sooo nice and was happy to do me the favor.
Doesn't he look like a real advertisement?
We decided to go back into the auditorium to see who was hanging around. Ligon Duncan was very excited to be a part of this. He was just kind of giggly over the whole thing, lol. He even struck quite the pose...like he does this all the time!
CJ Mahaney was next up. We knew he'd be game for the shot. His only advice was this: "You tell your pastor that if he is going to drink Mountain Dew...then go all the way and get rid of the Diet!"
The last person hanging around was Bob Kauflin. As you can see from his facial expression, it had been a long day, lol. He was happy to do it for us and gave us some great advice on worship in church.
And here is what I put together for Reggie:
When I think about it...I wonder how I managed to get the courage to actually ask people to do this! If I had really thought about it beforehand, I probably would have chickened out.
I will probably be forever known as the 'woman who made me pose with a Diet Mt Dew bottle"...at least now I have a conversation starter for the next conference..."Remember me? I took a picture of you with a soda bottle at T4G!"
Edited to add: I wasn't able to get MacArthur, Dever, or Sproul...they were like the untouchables of the conference, lol.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
You can head on over to Tim Challies, since he live blogged the conference.
You can also download the audio from the conference here. It would be so hard for me to choose one of two sermons to listen to....so just listen to them all. Although Sproul's is a must.
We took some pictures, met up with some old friends, met up with some new friends, got lots of free books, and didn't get much sleep!
Here are just a few highlights from the last few days:
*Hymns, hymns, and more hymns. Bob Kauflin led 5500 men and women (mostly men) in singing with only a piano. There was something so simple, yet so moving about hearing that many people sing out praise to our God.
*The books, oh the books! We only bought one book and one cd...yet we drive home with about 70 books between the two of us. So much reading to accomplish, and so little time.
*Shaking the hands and speaking with John Piper, CJ Mahaney, Ligon Duncan, Al Mohler, Thabiti Anyabwile, Bob Kauflin, Tim Challies, Phil Johnson, Frank Turk, Tom Ascol, and Carolyn McCulley. It was nice to see RC Sproul, Mark Dever, and John MacArthur...though I wasn't able to get close enough to them. Lord knows I tried, lol.
*Meeting in a room with 150 bloggers from across the US/Canada. I'm thinking there wasn't anyone from overseas. The panel was great and gave much insight to what the focus of a blogger should be about.
*Seeing grown men in their 40s, 50s, and 60s sprinting to get a good seat. It was like I was going shopping the day after Thanksgiving...except it was mainly men. I actually had a man apologize to me for the way his gender was acting, lol.
*Teaching good friends about the game of Quelf. Enough said.
*This morning, there was a man seated behind me that could not carry a tune...yet hearing him sing to his Redeemer was so pure and glorious.
*Seeing so many theological heroes of mine was almost overwhelming. To see RC Sproul really PREACH it, brought tears to our eyes. He was so profound and convicting, you could feel the deep love he has for Christ in the way he speaks. John and I were discussing how he is one of the Great Theologians of our time, and when our children are older, we can share that we were able to see one of the most influential teachers of our time.
*Meeting up with some friends that up to this point, we had only conversed with online. We met up several times, had some great discussion, ate a few meals and will definitely keep in touch with. (Hi Melissa and Rob) Thank you Mike Huckabee.
*Following Tom Ascol around the Convention Center...who was more lost than we were. Note to self: Never follow Tom Ascol...chances are, he's not too sure where he's going.
*The intimidation of Al Mohler. His intelligence is almost scary. I kept waiting for his head to explode.
*Ligon Duncan is the most down to earth PCA guy I've ever seen or met. When I asked him to do me a favor, he was more than happy to oblige!
*I love me some John Piper. I love his sense of humor and can't wait to see him two more times this year!! He's getting so culturally relevant too....CJ Mahaney got him an iPhone...who would have thought that Piper (who only owns maybe two or three suits) would have an iPhone? The man doesn't even own a tv, lol.
*Having some friends think they had an 'RC Sproul jr' sighting...sorry guys.
*We ate the most elegant dinner the first night....standing in line for an hour at Wendy's.
*Knowing that my boys were in good hands at Jim and Cindy's house(John's brother and our SIL). There is nothing more comforting to a mom to know that her children are in good hands. It has made this trip stress-free and relaxing.
*Meeting Carolyn McCulley. I saw her, recognized her, and then said hello. She has a new book coming out named Radical Womanhood: Feminine Faith in a Feminist World. It's available for preorder, and I really can't wait to get it.
*As people filled the auditorium, saving seats for those that had not yet arrived, I overheard a conversation of a man trying to find the rest of his group: "I don't see anyone waving around a banana!"
*Meeting a pastor's wife from New Mexico...I'm going to guess at her name..Stephanie? (I hope I got that right!) We were in pursuit of free books, and we ended up walking around the bookstore for awhile...until we found them! We are so like-minded, we immediately clicked. If we lived in the same town, we would surely be close friends. She has four boys, just like me....but still needs to work on that girl!
*The only missing piece of T4G was Reggie and Teana. Without them there, it definitely felt like something was missing. There will still be Desiring God this fall though....Melting Pot here we come!
I can't say enough about the way this conference refreshed us, and gave us a renewed yearning to spread the Gospel. In all of our differences, our centrality is the Gospel. It was definitely felt over the past few days by all who attended.
For all those who couldn't make it this year.....you've got two years to plan for the next Together for the Gospel!
Monday, April 14, 2008
We'll be meeting up with some friends who we don't see too much and just sitting back, enjoying great preaching from great men :)
This is the first time in close to two years that John and I have been kidless...well, except for Payson who remains in utero...but she's not too much of a trouble maker at this point, lol.
I'll be sure to take lots of pictures and collect lots of books.
Friday, April 11, 2008
You woke up this morning proclaiming "I a big boy now!"
Yes, you are Haddon-boy...you are my big three year old boy!
We began the day with our traditional breakfast outing to Cracker Barrel. You ate your pancakes while wearing your new sunglasses from Gramma and Grampa. Yes, they got sticky, but you were pretty cute sitting there.
Since we all know that money of any kind (including gift cards) burn holes in pockets, we headed out to Walmart. It didn't take you long to figure out what you wanted to spend your birthday money on. Now I truly believe we have every Alvin and the Chipmunk movie known to man!
The next stop was Baskins Robbins. You chose Jamocha ice cream and ate your cone all by yourself. Again, wearing your sunglasses. I don't think they ever left your face!
We ate lunch at the park and ate our Happy Meals. Daddy was even able to come by and join in!
It was a fun day, although we didn't like having to say goodbye to Gramma and Grampa as they left to go back to Maine today.
Your words are beginning to come out clearer, and you often want to be called Theodore! My little chipmunk!
It seems like only yesterday that I was laying in that hospital bed groaning the words "Get him out now!"
What a blessing you are to your mommy. There is never a dull moment in our house...thanks to my new little (or rather big!) three year old boy!
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
I don't know about you, but by the time I get done cutting up waffles, pancakes or french toast for my kids, they are about ice cold.
Maybe it has to do with the fact that I cut up four plates of food at a time...but seriously, I always feel a tiny bit guilty giving my children cold food.
Then I thought to use a pizza cutter to cut it up. In a few short cuts, things are all cut up and the food is still edible!
It makes preparing breakfast for your family actually fun!
This is something that you will share with everyone you know...and feel free to take complete credit for the idea!
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Nolan usually wins, and today was no different.
Once Nolan was all strapped in, he began telling Gideon that if he didn't hurry up, the police would get him for not being strapped in.
He proceeded to tell Gideon about jail.
"Gideon, in jail, there are dirty potties. There are dirty beds, too. And there is no water to drink...only blood!"
Friday, April 4, 2008
Thursday, April 3, 2008
I'm happy to see that Tim Challies has reviewed the book: Instructing a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp. I just received my copy in the mail the other day, and I can't wait to start reading it!
This is the follow-up book to Sheparding a Child's Heart.
John and I were able to attend a 2-day session with Tedd Tripp that was held in Knoxville, last year. We have been blessed tremendously by this book...and can only imagine how great his new book will be.
After reading Sheparding, it was recommended that I read Ginger Plowman's Don't Make Me Count to Three: a Mom's Look at Heart-Oriented Discipline. It really brought application to Tripp's book.
I've also found Wise Words for Moms that is a chart that goes along with Plowman's book, to be very useful.
As a mom of four, with #5 on the way, I could not recommend these more highly!!
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
I first blogged this WFMW back in September! This week, Shannon at Rocks in My Dryer is asking us to look into our archives and share it again!
So here it is:
With 4 boys, I feel like my days are filled with cleaning up after them. To put it mildly, they are not delicate and dainty in their playing (friends can attest to this, lol). The same is true when it comes to art. I found myself shying away from art projects with them, because I was tired of the crayons being everywhere, the markers missing covers, scissors being unaccounted for, etc.
Then I got this idea. How about I use my old Pampered Chef tool turnabout as an art caddy. I can't tell you how great this has turned out. Now, I have all the crayons and markers color coded in their own spot! No more impatience as I try to fit the kids crayons into those flimsy cardboard boxes that fit into the crayon box....no more markers without covers! You can find the discontinued tool turnabouts on ebay.
Here is a picture...it is sooo convenient!
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
All you need is:
*mozarella cheese (shredded)
*your favorite tomato sauce...I prefer Barilla Marinara Sauce
Put your oven on broil and set it to high. On a large cookie sheet, place two flour tortillas on it and place on the highest rack of your oven. Keep a close eye on it. When it starts to brown, remove the pan from the oven, remove the tortillas and wipe off the condensation from the pan.
Place one of the tortilla shells, browned side down, on the cookie sheet...place it back in the oven.
Watch it, and when it is brown, remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle cheese over the top. Put that back under the broiler until it starts to melt a little...remove the pan from the oven, sprinkle a little more cheese on it, and place the remaining tortilla shell on top, browned side down. Place once again under the broiler.
Meanwhile, heat up your sauce in the microwave.
When the top of the tortilla is brown, remove and cut into quarters.