Monday, October 31, 2011

Party Remnants

Saturday was the day. My boy is now four. Invitations were sent out and a party was had. (My brain was on overload and that is why there has been a lack of blogging.) Our Jonah party was a success. My sister, Hannah, came to help with crowd control and preparations. The party began with a prayer and the story of Jonah, as was requested by a small boy. Instead of doing "craft", I baked fish-shaped cookies for the kids to frost. Each child was able to frost three cookies. Funny side note- I didn't have a fish-shaped cookie cutter, so I made one by bending a metal bat-shaped cookie cutter. When was I ever going to make bat cookies??? So that is why these fish are so funky looking.

We also had a very large, whale-sized box. Each kid had a turn being Jonah inside the "whale". And when I left the room, the box was the center of attention, and would've met it's demise had I not returned in time. Yeah, boxes are awesome.
I managed to make a fish cake for the occasion, but didn't bake Jonah into his middle like planned.
We proceeded with our four year old birthday celebration, with a lunch of fish sticks, tater-tots, and carrots. (Yes, I serve such "healthy" birthday lunches.) After which, the fish cake was cut and enjoyed.
Almost guaranteed, the favorite part of the party would have to be the pinata. I had attempted to make a pinata earlier in the week, using a balloon and paper machete. Unfortunately, it took more than six days to dry, and I was not able to use it. So, on Friday I did a quick online search and found a wonderful substitution. A paper bag, stuffed with newspaper and candy, and decorated with crepe paper (left over from our decorations) made a super pinata. Each kid had ample opportunity to hit the make-shift pinata and had fun diving for candy when it finally burst.

I think each and every one of us had a lot of fun at Josh's birthday Bible Club. And at least three of us were ready for a nap afterward.

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Jonah Bible Club

So, you know how a few of the neighborhood kids have been asking about Bible Club? Well, now my own son has started. I just can't get away. ;) And I think I have an answer to my prayers about how to go about it, or at least a start. Through no provoking of my own, Josh started asking about Bible Club and then he went on to ask if he could have Bible Club on his birthday. I stopped whatever I was doing and began to consider my little boy's request. "And invite the neighborhood kids?" I asked. "Yes." I think he was inspired by someone bigger than both of us... I asked him what Bible story we should tell, and after considering it for a moment, "Jonah" was his reply. This is very do-able, I think. I'm not the greatest at throwing parties or putting plans into actions, but when my little boy wants to have Bible Club for his birthday, I would venture to say that it might be the Lord's way of getting me going. (I always need a little push to get things done.) So I have 18 days to plan a Jonah Bible Club birthday party. Maybe a whale cake, reading the story of Jonah, Jonah games? I will have to pray for some more ideas...

I just have to say, God has the best ideas.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Sunflower Cutting Time

Climbing the ladder to success.
Under those spent blossoms, is a treasure trove of goodness.
Joshua pretends to be a sunflower. (Seriously.)
The flower heads were huge! This one was probably the prettiest of all.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

They Were of Mammoth Proportion

My sunflowers brought me quite a bit of happiness. They were super tall and impressive. This was the first year I had these majestically tall flowers in my garden, and I don't plan on it being the last. Monday of this week though, it was time. Time to harvest the flower heads and hang them somewhere out of the relentless rain to dry. There were 27 mature flowers that were cut, put into paper bags, and hung to dry, in my parents' barn, since I didn't have enough room in my basement to hang 27 Mammoth Sunflower heads. If all goes well, in a few weeks, the heads will be dried and we can harvest the seeds, roast and salt them, and devour their tasty goodness. That is, if they don't mold and don't get eaten by bugs or mice... That is a big fear of mine.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

A Safe Spot

That is what I want my home to be. A safe spot. A welcome place. A shelter. I would love to be able to minister to the children that wander through my neighborhood and love them as Jesus would. I want them to see Jesus in my home. This week, both Sunday evening and this evening, two of the neighborhood girls showed up at my house. They came on Sunday to ask me random questions about a bike in my yard and about the carrots in my garden. But they came again tonight for no particular reason. And they will be back again. I have been feeling the Lord's tug on my heart to open my home to these kids and others, to be able to share with them more about Jesus and the Bible. Jesus has done so much for me and I want to share Him with others who have never heard. I can no longer deny this calling, I just don't know exactly how to go about doing it. Do I simply live and be a godly example? Or do I add structure and sit and read stories and allow them time to ask questions? Or do I incorporate Bible stories into our visits as they come? Please pray for me that I will follow God's ever-so-gentle calling on my life.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Layed Bare

He's calling me to come closer. To come walk with Him. To partake of solid food. Spend more time with Him. To make Him my priority. I know that I have regressed. I have become self-centered and selfish, and have tainted my Lord's reputation. When did I become this way? When did I start caring less about those who surround me? When did I become a baby in the Lord? He wants me to eat solid food now, real meat. Hebrew 6:1 says, "Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God..." I can put on a good facade and am well practiced at it. I look good from the outside, but more and more has the ugly side been showing itself. It's hard for me to love. It's hard for me to forgive. I bring up the hurts that should've been brushed aside by now. I have problems. I am the problem. I need more Jesus. He is the Potter and I am the clay. Can He really clean out the gnarled, crusty self inside of me? Can He really make me new, once again? Can my heart really look like His? I'm tired of these earthly passions and fading trends. Who really cares if I have the latest look or my house looks like a picture from a magazine? Is that what Jesus wants me to spend my time thinking about? Does not His heart bleed for the sins we have committed? Can He make my heart bleed for those things once again? Can He callus my heart toward earthly satisfactions? Yes, yes He can.

Hebrews 6:11 & 12 "And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises."

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Good-Bye Sunshine!

The first day of October came brutally, with cold wind and rain. Time for jackets! These sunflowers have long since faded, their sunny faces turned brown and cold. Their seeds are hardening and will soon be ready for harvest. This sunflower will, in a few short weeks, be tasty sunflower seeds, and who knows? Maybe you will even be able to have some for yourself!