Friday, June 29, 2007

Favorite Beach Books

Each year before we go to the beach, we check out beach books to build anticipation and to enjoy while we're there. These are some of our favorites.

Don't miss Saturday's full moon

Dawn tipped me to the summer moon illusion this Saturday night. Check out NASA's website for more info on the phenomonen and moon rising times.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Byars Idol

Last week Ethan informed me that Anna and I should perform so that we could have Byars Idol, and he would be Simon. Because he was thinking that maybe instead of a doctor or a preacher hw would like to be a judge for American Idol when he grew up. A few days later, on Father's Day, they discovered that heir great grandfather's cane made a great microphone.

Other Father's Day pics.

At the zoo on Tuesday

Uncle Joseph, Aunt Hannah, and my kids

The Carl Sandburg house

We packed a picnic and headed out today for Flat Rock, NC. It was extrememly hot and humid, but the scenery was beautiful and the goat milk fudge was yummy.
We saw a half hour (in the sweltering sun)long Broadway style
performance of Mr. Sandburg's Rootabaga stories set to his music.

Mrs. Sandburg raised goats and the children enjoyed petting them.

A vineyard we drove through on the way home.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

She said, "Woof, woof!"

She painted herself

60th Wedding Anniversary

Brian's parents had this arrangement put in his grandparents' church in their honor. Isn't that neat? 60 years - yay, Grandma and Papa Fowler!

Quick and easy gluten-free dinner

I'm happy to report that Joseph and Brian were able to successfully install our new motherboard and work out the remaining kinks.

This dinner begins with a package of Mahatma yellow rice. When the rice is finished stir in a few handfuls of fresh spinach leaves, then add some grilled chicken strips. I used the frozen, pre-cooked grilled chicken strips from Aldi's. That's it. You can serve it with a mixed melon cup for an even prettier, more balanced meal.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Lessons in Reformed theology

If you haven't been to Growing Vertical lately, Brian's begun addressing the famous five points after having laid a comprehensive foundation of predestination, God's plan, God's sovereignty, the providence of God, and foreknowledge.

Sticker Praying

I first tried this idea a couple of years ago. I bought a package of small neon rectangle stickers and wrote the names of all of my relatives on them and stuck them in high traffic locations. Pray for Joseph when loading the dishwasher, Titus when using the toaster, Grandma when using the stove, Hannah when turning on my bedroom light. It worked really well for at least a few months until I became familiar with the locations and didn't notice them as much. A few things I realized - names on light switches were more easily missed, names on places where you stand or sit for a period of time continue to be noticed, names in unusual places are noticed, but not as frequently.

Most of the old names have worn off or been removed, but I've started a new round. Most of these are names of couples. The couple who's husband is out of work, the couple who's wife has cancer, the couples in our shepherding group, couples in my family. I've been making a point of putting a name on a sticker whenever someone asks me to pray for them, I tell someone that I'll pray for them, or I feel the need to be in prayer for a particular person. There's nothing worse than telling someone that you'll pray for them, and then forgetting until the next time you see them.

The names are in better locations based on my first experience. The stickers on my computer monitor and kitchen window above the sink are well prayed for. The stove and the book crate beside my seat on the couch are great spots too.

It is my hope that sticker praying will allow me to say with Paul, "I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers."(Ephesians 1:16, NIV)

Old book series

Hannah was keeping an eye on her e-bay bids for some Judy Bolton books last night. She says that they are hard to find. I read a couple of Judy Bolton, but had other favorites. In first grade I read all of the Nancy Drew books and Bobbsey Twin books that I could find. By fourth grade I was hooked on Trixie Beldon, who I would have to say would be my choice to collect (but, of course, I already have the Bobbsey Twins.) Then it was Mandie books. They were gems. She and I started out the same age (12), but eventually my birthdays came faster than hers and I outgrew them. I also enjoyed the Grandma's Attic series. In high school my little brother started buying the "new" Hardy Boys casefiles and he would give them to me to read first (because he had an earlier bedtime and I would read them before mine, so he never really missed them anyway). Of course I loved the Little House books. (Click the link. It is a neat little website with quizzes on the Little House books, recipes, and my girls' favorite Little House storybooks.) And here's a funny for you. When I first read Anne of Green Gables as a girl, I remember finishing it and wishing that there was a sequel. It took me several years to find out that there were many sequels! I ended up liking L.M. Montgomery's Emily series even better, though. I think my favorite book of all, though was Heidi Grows Up, the second of the three Heidi books. So tell me, what were your favorite series of books as a child?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Guest Blogging

Hello everyone! This is Hannah (previously from This May Be My Life), Alicia's younger sister. She has agreed to allow me to guest blog while I am visiting her this week. Since I just spent about eight hours of my day in a truck driving from Virginia with my husband, I had a great opportunity to read license plates. Here are just a few:

Woop D Du ..... Pretty self explanatory.

WRSHP ..... Worship --- I was listening to my favorite Christian radio station when I saw this one.

KRYP2N8 ..... Yes, I believe this means Kryptonite. The driver must think he is Superman.

NSCR8FN ..... Nascar 8 Fan --- Unfortunately, I think that the driver's husband must be the Nascar fan, because she wasn't even driving the speed limit.

2PRAZ GD ..... This was my particular favorite. Joseph, my husband, and I were listening to Lifesong by Casting Crown when we saw this plate. It took only a few seconds to guess...To Praise God!!! Wonderful.

MITE GOD ..... Mighty God. 'Nuff said.

ILLMKIT ..... I'll Make It. ---I don't know WHAT I'm making, but I'll make it!

K9 DSGN ..... Canine Design. --- Do you think maybe she make dog clothes? You know, cute little pink outfits with pompoms?

Well, that's all folks. If Alicia doesn't write too often this week you can blame it on me. She is all mine!

Signing out.....Hannah

On their way -

a new motherboard and my sister Hannah and brother-in-law Joseph! Yay! I can't wait! The kids (I'm eight years older, can't help it, my siblings will always be my kids too) will be here tomorrow and the motherboard soon after, I hope.

I finally got the pool up for my real kids (actually Brian did). And while my computer has been messed up, I've actually had time to read fiction - and I've sure enjoyed it. My mother sent me Lynn Austin's Refiner's Fire books 1-3 for my birthday in March, I've finally read them. and I really enjoyed them, especially the first one, Candle in the Darkness.

Ethan is sleeping in his top bunk for the first time tonight and Anna is is the bottom and Rose is on a mattress on the floor since the girls' room has been designated the guest room. I finally got the mattress for the second bunk all fixed up and on the bed. He's thrilled.

Rose loves to dance! She's not as graceful as Anna Kate, but she makes up for it in passion and enthusiasm. We had CMT's summer fun station on (you can skip any songs that you don't like) and she danced and danced. Playing music is always a funny debate at our house. Brian turns it on at a medium to medium low volume. Ethan's always disliked loud noise or music (other than himself), so he 's good with that volume. I, on the other hand, believe that if you're going to listen to music (or sing or "dance" to it) it should be as loud as possible. This is an across the board rule from Mozart's Great C Minor Mass to Blake Shelton's "Some Beach." Brian enjoys my enjoyment of my very loud music, but usually turns it down when that particular "favorite" is over (I only turn it down if channel surfing doesn't present another favorite), Ethan sits and complains about how loud it is. And let me tell you, folks, they have not even heard loud yet. When no one is home, or I'm in the car by myself it is way louder than anything they tolerate.

Well, I've been my usual random self. Someday I'll get my pics and stuff up that I want to share with you all. Happy Sunday!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Wonderful book

I just fell in love with another book. I checked it out of the librar for my sunshine girl, Anna Kate. It's called Wild, Wild Sunflower Child Anna by Nancy White Carlstrom and it is such a beautiful poem that describes my own sweet girl to a T. I think that it's out of print, but check your library and see if you can find this gem - escpecially if you have an Anna living at your house. If she's anything like mine, you'll be reading it again and again.

Fried Motherboard

That's what the electrical storm had for dinner last Wednesday night. So I really do still love you all, but my computor is missing and we're hooked up to a borrowed laptop right now. Hopefully we'll be ordering a new motherboard soon. I have so many things that I've wanted to post, but most involve pics which I can't upload right now. I'll try to jump on and post more later, but I just wanted to let you know. BTW, it's really hot here and I'm very glad that my air unit didn't break! :^)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

A life well-lived

Go read Ann's tribute to her mother-in-law. It reminded me of these words from Nicole Nordeman's "Legacy":

I want to leave a legacy
How will they remember me?
Did I choose to love
Did I point to You enough
To make a mark on things?
I want to leave an offering
A child of mercy and grace
who blessed your name unapologetically
And leave that kind of legacy

Monday, June 11, 2007

Flag Day for Kids

  1. Rules for flying the flag and great Americans sharing their thoughts on the flag at the Presidential Prayer Team for Kids website.
  2. A candy flag at the Idea Box.
  3. A flag to color at Crayola.
  4. A craft stick flag craft at Enchanted Learning.
  5. Printable flags and skads of other Flag Day ideas at Child Fun.
  6. There are several Flag Day worksheets as well as Father's Day sheets in the new Joyous June set of worsksheets at Learning Sign up for access - it's free!
  7. The All American Flag Mold, or, if you don't have a mold, Uncle Sam's Red, White, And Blue Parfaits from Kraft Foods.
  8. American flag iron-ons from hp.

We try to have a Kid's Day party each summer. So far we've had a Pirate and Island Princess Party and a Cowboy and Indians party. This year we're having a Flag Day party. We'll make a flag craft then decorate bikes and wagons and make homemade instruments (or use what we already have) for a parade to Sousa marches. We'll have few all-American games including hot potato (with a flag, of course). We'll learn and sing "You're a Grand Old Flag," then read some flag books while enjoying hot dogs on a stick, the flag mold, and watermelon star pops. After lunch, we'll turn on the sprinkler and jump in the pools for some water fun. Maybe the Cool-Off Game or water balloons too.

Friday, June 08, 2007


I will make you brooches and toys for your delight
Of bird-song at morning and star-shine at night.
I will make a palace fit for you and me
Of green days in forests and blue days at sea.

I will make my kitchen, and you shall keep your room,
Where white flows the river and bright blows the broom,
And you shall wash your linen and keep your body white
In rainfall at morning and dewfall at night.

And this shall be for music when no one else is near,
The fine song for singing, the rare song to hear!
That only I remember, that only you admire,
Of the broad road that stretches and the roadside fire.

from Songs of Travel and Other Verses
by Robert Louis Stevenson

Mike Huckabee on MTP Part 2

Thursday, June 07, 2007

I like

my family together
watching my kids run in the rain
french toast
lilacs and gardenias
pineapple lotion
parties with friends
I Corinthians 15
love letters
romantic movies
the ocean
candles at a candle shop
rose gardens
fresh blueberries
track 3 on the new Pirates soundtrack
twilight that lingers
lightning bugs

Thanks to Mrs. B at Cherish the Home for the inspiration. What do you like?

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Morning Reading

Sometimes we try so hard when we just need to shut up and get out of the way. That's what I got out of my morning reading today. :^) Think I'd better frame this verse.

"Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again. The LORD will fight for you, and you have only to be silent." Exodus 14:13-14

Huge Sale

at Bath and Body Works! Shower gels $3 and lotions from $4.

Sunday, June 03, 2007


"A grape's life cycle starts right after harvest. As temperatures drop, leaves fall off the vine. Vineyard workers prune throughout winter to prepare the vine for the spring growth to come. The pruning helps determine the number of shoots that will bear fruit, thus affecting the next season's yield." - from "The Life of a Grape," an article in Publix's Grape magazine

"I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch of mine that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit." - John 15:1-2, ESV

Picture courtesy of

The 7 Meme

Leslie tagged me for this over a month ago. I'm supposed to write seven random facts or habits about myself. I'm also supposed to tag seven more people, but I'll bend the rules a bit and just tag whoever hasn't done it yet and would like to join in. I'm not sure what to write, so I'm just going to wing it. Here goes-

  1. I can't get rid of books unless I really don't like them. And I hardly ever have a book that I really don't like. And I really like to buy books (at thrift stores, of course). So now you have a mental image of my house. :^)

  2. I get wicked morning sickness. I've had days where I pretty much threw up every 15-20 minutes all day long.

  3. I don't trust doctors at all. I believe that most of them are well-intentioned, but that they are generally of very little use for serious ailments beyond surgeries and signing prescriptions.

  4. I have a habit of staying up too late that I'm always working on, and my kids have a habit of getting up too early, even when they get to bed late that I wish they'd work on!

  5. I have a portrait of my mother and I on my wall that was done when I was about 2 and she was about 23. My friends usually think that it is Anna Kate and myself at first glance.

  6. I don't like ice in my drinks. I don't even drink water from the refrigerator; I drink it at tap temperature.

  7. I have a serious addiction to chocolate. Serious.

Well that was random, all right.