Tuesday, December 29, 2009

It's the most wonderful time of the year...

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. I sure did! And although I made a peep last month about not being a "gift" person, when it comes down to it, I really enjoy the giving and the receiving at Christmastime. :-D
  • My favorite gift to give - In our family the siblings do a mystery name exchange. This year I had Michael... and I did not know what to get him. Then, about a week before Christmas, I remembered that, last year, I had wished I had drawn his name so I could get him a cape, or the stuff to make it (If you know him well you would understand why.) So this year, that's what I did! I made him a calf-length black/red hooded cape. It was pretty crazy since I hadn't made anything like it before, but I finished it, well past the 11th hour, I might add. And he loved it! What was really funny: doing it as last minute as I was, I couldn't always wait until he was gone to work on it. When I was working on the red satin side, both he and Stephanie thought I was making a skirt! And after I had put the black and red together, Stephanie made some remarks. "You know what that looks like? A cape... like Michael's dream cape." I just kept quiet and grinned to myself.

  • My favorite gift to receive - was a very special gift for the whole family - a violin!!! Valerie and I have wanted to start violin for a long time (longer for her) and we were thrilled! Everyone has tried it, but she and I have been practicing every day. I love it, and I've been picking it up pretty quickly. The smaller shape and fingerboard, the simplicity of doing only one note at a time (so far), it's all good.

  • Oh, and if you care, my mom gave me a card reader for High-Capacity SD cards. :-)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Here are the pictures that we put on our Christmas cards. Have a blessed Christmas!

Mute Monks Provide Words for Wednesday

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. The Bible commands over and over to "Give thanks unto the Lord". How great that we have a national holiday set aside for just that! Plus, for us, it's a generally relaxed day of visiting with extended family and sharing a great meal. (And, there's no stress about having to deal with presents, unlike a certain other holiday! Gifts is not my primary love language. ;) Have a blessed holiday and don't forget to take time and personally thank the Giver of all good things.

It is good to give thanks to the LORD,
And to sing praises to Your name, O Most High;
Psalm 92:1

About our turkey flock: This is a resurrected tradition that we used to do every year. We also used to make them with chocolate-dipped marshmallows and chocolate sandwich cookies so they would be brown. Can you imagine, more sugar?! But they are cute, and fun to make.

PS: I'm thankful - we figured out what was wrong with the card readers... nothing! They just can't read my new High-Capacity SD card. But Chris' laptop can, so I guess I'm "back in business". :)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Brian is five!

The baby of the family is five today!
Of course he's not a baby anymore, but he'll always be my sweet, smart, and SO CUTE baby brother!
Happy birthday Brian!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Good enough? No. Willing? Maybe...

Not long ago, my brothers and sisters and I, with our mom, were invited by a lady from our church to do a presentation for a Bible study at a local retirement home. We had done this once before, in January, and the seniors there appreciated it so much that we were invited back again. Our presentation was simple: we sang some Sunday School songs with the guitar accompanying, recited some Scripture from memory, did a semi-improv skit about the Good Samaritan, then sang some praise songs. Afterwards someone else we know from church taught the Bible Study.

Now, we are no Von Trapp family. True, a couple of us have some musical talent, but it's not in the voice department. None of us are great singers. We are lucky if we sing in the same key - forget about harmony. Ok, maybe we are ahead of the average youth when it comes to Bible memory, but our acting was far from noteworthy. But none of that mattered. It's hard to describe how grateful they were to us for coming. We had many people say such sweet things to us - thanking us for coming, complementing us on how nice of a family we were, even on our singing and guitar playing! I remember back in January when we went the first time thinking, "What are we doing here? There are other families that do this sort of thing so much better than us." But those families don't live around here or go to our church.

I came across this quote last year:
I wasn’t God’s first choice for what I’ve done for China… I don’t know who it was… It must have been a man… a well-educated man. I don’t know what happened. Perhaps he died. Perhaps he wasn’t willing… and God looked down… and saw Gladys Aylward… And God said – “Well, she’s willing. -- Gladys Aylward
No one who knows Gladys Aylward's story would even dream of second-guessing that God wanted her doing what she was doing. But like the rest of us, she had times where she felt weak and inadequate.

The truth is, that's exactly what we are: weak and inadequate. But, as any child who knows the song "Jesus Loves Me" knows, "we are weak but He is strong!" He is strong, and His power and His Spirit are available to us. But are we willing? God knows what He's doing when He asks us to serve for Him. It's to grow us as well as do His work. It doesn't matter whether we are "good enough" because it's His power that works to do His will anyway. (Eph. 1:11)

Let's be willing! Instead of worrying about whether we're good enough, let's remember that only One is Good, that is, God. Even in the small things, let's cheerfully obey God.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Why you cannot see the snake

I didn't realize how dependent I was on pictures for my blog. There are several posts I was thinking up that just beg for a photo. But alas, neither of our card readers are working, so my pictures are trapped on my camera for now. Sorry... that's why you cannot see the snake.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Our winter boarder

We have a new guest in the house. His name is Fluffy. Or maybe it's a her, I don't know. He/she/it is an animal from the Nature Center at the camp that Chris works at, but we were offered a chance to have it during the winter. What? Did you ask if it was a rabbit? No, it's not a rabbit. A hamster? Nope, not a hamster. A gerbil? No. A guinea pig? No. A chinchilla? No. It's not a mammal. A... um... bird? Nope, it's not a bird, either. It's a snake, a very large (9 foot long) red-tailed boa. I have no idea who named it.

It's been a neat experience so far. He's quiet and easy to take care of (because that's Chris's responsibility, lol). And he can be fascinating to watch. Sometimes when he is stretching out he seems to defy gravity. The other day he curled up in his water bucket, with even his head submerged.

He only bites things he knows he can swallow, so as long as your hand doesn't look like a gerbil, he won't bite you. But I don't think anyone besides Chris has been brave enough to hold him. (Of course the little kids can't by themselves even if they wanted to because he's so heavy.)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Keep off the sidewalks!

I finally got my driver's license yesterday - on 9/9/09! :D Thanks, Mom and Dad for making me drive all the time these last few months. I'm glad that I wasn't pushed into driving, but I'm glad that you were wise enough to not let me put it off forever. You're the best!

(PS: To anyone who heard the above news via Facebook: that's just one more reason why I don't need a Facebook. If anything of importance happens, Chris can and probably will announce it to the world for me. :P )

Thursday, August 6, 2009

What I've been up to in a nutshell (nutshells not included).

Update time! Life keeps happening, and there are a lot of posts that I wanted to write but never got to. Whether they ever get revisited or not, here is a quick outline of "what I've been up to".

  • Do Hard Things conference in Chicago. Great, fun, lived up to expectations. :) Alex and Brett are great speakers. Read their book!
  • Citation Connect '09. I got to go to Awana headquarters for a few days with a group of other Citation Achievers (a Citation Achiever is someone who has finished 10 Awana handbooks). We got a tour of HQ and the building where they handle all the shipping stuff (Penny Lane). We also took a sightseeing trip to Chicago and did some other fun stuff. I learned a lot and especially enjoyed meeting other Awana people from all around the country. Some came from as far as Maryland, Washington state, California, Texas, etc.
  • Illinois Square Dance Convention! Ironically, this year it was in Davenport, Iowa! But we didn't mind, because we stayed with our friends who live there, the S. family. Best of all, Megan S. learned to dance just so she could come with us! She was famous that weekend because she learned all of Mainstream in two 4-hour lessons the previous week and did great! (Her brother Jared also came and we pulled him through... he also did great despite the fact he had no idea what was going on, lol!)
Well there you go... my exciting highlights of July. :)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Do Hard Things Conference [Going Soon!]

I'm excited! Seemingly at the last minute, details have fallen into place for Valerie, Michael and I to go to the Do Hard Things conference next Saturday. Our friend Jacqui is going to drive us, and we are meeting some camp friends (and some non-camp friends ;) ) there. If you've never heard of Do Hard Things, I'd encourage you to check out the Rebelution website and Alex & Brett Harris' blog www.therebelution.com. Alex & Brett are 20 year old twins, and the younger brothers of Joshua Harris who wrote I Kissed Dating Goodbye. A couple years ago they started the Rebelution. The Rebelution is a movement of teenagers that are "rebelling against low expectations". It's pretty awesome. Check it out, and if you can, come on Saturday!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Imminently before camp...

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. James 4:13-16

  God is alive and active. So is Satan.
Within a span of a few hours last Friday evening, our family was beset with several incidents that messed up our plans, to say the least.

   As you know, we were preparing for camp. My mom drove up to WI with the three little kids to pick up Chris from where he's working. My dad was trying to make the most of some resting time. It had been overcast most of the day, with thunderstorms predicted for the night. Believe it or not, in IL, the weather report are usually accurate. The storms came. The power, however, left. This did not seem like a problem at first. Normally, I enjoy when the power goes out. It usually comes back within an hour or two, and it is fun to see what we are "dependent" on for electricity in the meantime. But, it was raining now. Hard. And our sump pump does not have a backup battery. Nor do we have a generator. So... the basement started to flood. Anyone who has been in our basement knows that is a very bad thing. Not only do we have carpet down there, but there are tons of piles of stuff down there: boxes of books and papers, musical instruments and amps, computers. We brought the guitars, amplifiers, and most-at-risk boxes of paper/books upstairs, and prayed for the power to come back on.

   Meanwhile, my mom is getting ready to return with Chris... and the van won't start. And it won't start. And it won't start. So they are stranded at a youth camp 40 minutes away. This development isn't very encouraging to us here at home.

   But the power comes back on after a bit more than an hour. Hallelujah, thank you Lord! It's hardly raining at all now. We kids who are home go out on the driveway for a bit for a short refresher from being cooped up indoors. Michael and Valerie start sparring with homemade swords made from metal bars. My dad tells them to stop because, "All we need now is for someone to get hurt". (!) Sadly, they do not obey immediately, and Michael's sword hits Valerie on her upper lip. It is quite a bad cut, with substantial bleeding. It will need stitches. Dad, Valerie, and I go to the ER. Val gets 8 stitches.

   Back in WI, a friend is working on the van, but nothing is happening fast. Mom and the kids spend the night at the WI camp. The guys work on the van until 5 in the morning, but to no avail. It will have to be taken to a mechanic.

   We get back from the ER at about 11 (after stopping at Walgreen's for antibiotic prescription. The basement is 3 inches deep in water in places. Dad and Michael run water soak-up until 2 AM; I bake the quadruple batch of Amish friendship bread that Valerie was about to bake when the power went out (I let her go to bed) and wash dishes. I also take a turn on water soak-up using the carpet cleaner. It's tiring work, especially at this point in time.

   The next day, Saturday, was quite different from originally planned. Instead of the kids and Dad pulling out at 7 in the morning for camp in the van, and we at home doing Red Day, we at home were doing water soak-up and Mom and all in WI were riding home at 1 PM with a friend who works at camp. She lives in the same town as us and was returning home for her day off. Not only that, she has a minivan and so could transport 5 people. It was Providential! Michael and Stephanie got picked up by yet another friend, who drove them to camp. (their son was originally supposed to ride down in our van. This friend also is graciously lending us a car that they aren't using this week until tomorrow when the van is done.) Dad, Chris, and Val drove down to camp in the car after dinner, having missed half a day of camp. Mom and I continue on water soak-up while at Rainbow* (Color) Camp.

   Through it all, God has been protecting and providing even as we are being stretched. I am learning a lot about sleep deprivation, perseverance, and prayer. And Rainbow Camp is fun, by the way. My little siblings are a blast.

   Satan is alive and active. So is God. And God wins.

*My mom was remarking about Rainbow Camp being after The Flood. My dad replied, "Does that mean it won't happen ever again?"

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Camp, imminent.

On Saturday, my Dad, Chris, Val, Michael, and Stephanie are going to camp (that which was formerly known as Awana Scholarship Camp). They are super excited. It is exceedingly strange to not be going - I've gone for the last 8 years! But now I'm too old (or, if you ask my dad, I had no more handbooks to complete). Those who are remaining at home are going to be doing Year 2 of Color Camp. Each day is designated a color, and we do our best to wear, eat, and do activities of that color. So that should be fun.
Pray that it is a great week and that God does a great work in the campers' lives. Every year that I went I was challenged and energized in my walk with the Lord. Pray also that the high schoolers' mission trip (to a day camp for Peoria inner-city kids) is a blessing to them and brings many to salvation.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Jerry Story Weekend '09

It was SO. MUCH. FUN! This past Memorial Day weekend, Dad, Chris, Valerie, and I went to the Jerry Story weekend in Dubuque, Iowa. Jerry Story is a phenomenal caller (many say the best, and I won't argue) and the dancing was incredible.
Here are some of my highlights:
  • Dancing with our "Wisconsin friends". That's fun no matter whose calling, and this time was no exception. At times, we had 2 whole squares of just kids (OK, my dad was in there too, and even in the square dancing world he's not a kid. But he keeps up.)

  • The tip where we did 2 all-girls squares and 1 all-boys square. It was a fast song, too!

  • The tip where we were trading like crazy between the two kids' squares!

  • The tip when my dad and I was in a square with Bob Asp. We kept the same square for the "Killer Plus", and that was the most successful one I was in all weekend.

  • Speaking of which: the Killer Plus dancing. That was my first time doing DBD, so I didn't know what to expect. It was fun!

  • The afternoon workshops; learning new stuff. It's not every day that you get to do point-to-point diamonds, Left Coordinate's, and Stretch the Recycle.

  • Staying in the same hotel as the WI kids and many other dancers (including Jerry Story!). It's neat seeing familiar people at breakfast.

  • Seeing the couple of which the lady is in a wheelchair. We danced with her at the WI convention, and my grandma danced in her square at the Senior Olympics! So it was neat to talk to them some more this time and get to know them better.

  • Going to Goodwill and Perkins on Sunday with the WI group.

  • Ultimate Frisbee on Saturday night with the light-up Frisbee. Chris was doing great catches and impressing everyone. Ask him about the catch involving the invisible chain-link fence. ;-)

  • Alex doing the Chicken Dance. :-P

  • The good, good dancing, of course!

So. Much. Fun. Anyone who is reading this and does not square dance needs to learn how to immediately (over the next year, at least), so that you can come next year. :-)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Ups and downs

Up: Play ball! Chris is playing on the church softball team, and David and Brian are playing T-Ball. We have been having lots of fun doing batting practice and 5-person games at home.

Up: School! I really like Sonlight curriculum... we get to read some really great books! Right now it's The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis.

Down: School. It never ends.

Up: The weather! Admittedly, I like most types of weather, but it's hard to stay inside on these warm sunshiny days.

Up: Square dancing! (Always an up!) This weekend Chris, Valerie, my Dad, and I are going three hours away for three days of dancing that are going to be so much fun!!! Also, Laura just graduated from lessons, becoming the 6th kid of the family to dance (of this generation, anyway.)

Up: Sewing. Valerie and I have been enjoying our "sewing Mondays with Grandma" immensely. We finished several skirts (improving each time). Valerie also made a shirt, and we are working on another. I am also currently making a skirt for my friend Hannah - our first project without Grandma's help at all.

Down: Friends that are hurting. There is a dear older couple from church who recently lost their only son (I think they have a daughter) to a car accident. Another family, who we know from our other church, is also grieving. The wife was pregnant with their fourth baby, who was diagnosed with Trisomy 18, a serious genetic disorder. A week or two ago, the baby died in utero.

UP! God is so good, all the time. He is my joy, comfort, strength, and best friend. .:Philippians 4:4:.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Michelle, married!

As some of you know, Michelle and Ryan, friends of ours, got married last Saturday!
I've been friends with Michelle for since I was 7 and she was 10, and I was one of her bridesmaids. It was my first time being a "real bridesmaid". I was a junior bridesmaid in my aunt's wedding when I was ten, but that's not really the same. (Junior bridesmaids are basically promoted flower-girls, ha.)

It was a beautiful wedding. I didn't cry, but I got close at one point. There came the part of the ceremony where Michelle and Ryan gave roses to their mothers, and they surprised everyone, including me, by giving a rose to both my mom and to Mrs. S. (There is a traditional "joke" about Michelle being "adopted" into our family, and also the S. family. ) I wish I could've gotten a video of their expressions! It was very special.

The reception was lots of fun - there was great dance music! Got to put that ballroom dancing to use... waltzed with Dad and Chris and swing-danced with Valerie, Laura, and Morgan. :D

Sometimes it's hard to believe that she's actually married now. It feels so right, though, and I know God orchestrated it just the way He pleased. All my prayers and congratulations, Michelle and Ryan! God bless you in this new part of your life!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Competition-crazy month

Been wondering what we've been up to? There's a lot to tell! For 4 weeks in a row, we had some sort of competitive event, most of them having to do with Awana. My sister Stephanie was especially busy, as she participated in each one! A privilege of being in 6th grade.

First weekend: Awana T&T Bible Quizzing. My mom helped coach, and I served as Timekeeper. Very interesting being part of such suspense. Steph quizzed alone against one other Book 4 quizzer (normally they are teams of 2 or 3). They were well-matched, but Stephanie pulled ahead and won! Yay!

Second weekend: Gamequest. It's true! Awana goes all the way to high school... it's a big secret, I know. Jr. and Sr. High have regional games and quizzing competition all on the same day. Chris, Michael, and Stephanie all joined onto other church's teams so they could play games. Michael and Stephanie's team (Trek) got 2nd place in the first round and 4th place in the second round. Chris's team (Journey) got 3rd. We see a lot of people that we know from camp there, so that's always great. Megan and Jared S. even came out to watch (long time no see, haha).

Third weekend: Sparks-A-Rama and AwanaGames!!! (I almost made a whole post for just this one, but obviously I changed my mind.) I was so excited for this day! I wish I could still play as a clubber, but helping coach is the next best thing. This was a very interesting day, because it was almost exactly like last year, except with all new people from our new church. Even down to the scores... Sparks finished, um, last... but our T&T WON!!! Woohoo! They did fantastic! At first we didn't know if we'd have enough people to make teams, but we did it, though we had to pull kids from 4 other churches to have enough. (Sparks did end up being short a girl, but they needed us to play so bad they let it slide). We had really cool blue camouflage T-shirts that made it very obvious who you were cheering for. (Ironically, they make it really easy to spot friends across the room, and they didn't help our Sparks at all in the game Rabbit Hunt.) Afterwards, we went to Culver's for ice cream, another tradition.

Fourth weekend: Odyssey of the Mind (or OM for short). OM used to be called Olympics of the Mind, and what it is is a competition of creativity. Michael and Stephanie did it with a couple other kids. They had to choose one of several tasks, then creatively accomplish it. The task they picked was to research the trials of Hercules (or Heracles), then make up their own and act it out, overcoming a few prescribed obstacles. This weekend was the State competition in St. Louis, and they got 2nd place out of 5 teams. That means they will go to World in May, which is held in Iowa. They will literally be up against teams from all over US and the world!

So there you have it: our past several weeks in a nutshell. Busy but fun!

Thursday, February 19, 2009


As most of you probably know, I'm a big reader. These are some books I've read in the past couple months:

The Bravehearted Gospel by Eric Ludy
This is a powerful book. I would recommend it to all Christians, and especially pastors. It has a culture-defying message, a call to lay aside everything that entangles us and to wholeheartedly serve our Mighty God. A call for us to follow the cross, the world behind us, no turning back.

Set-Apart Femininity by Leslie Ludy
Wow! From the very first chapter, this book spoke to my soul even more directly than The Bravehearted Gospel. It's specifically written to women about the awesomeness of giving your whole life to Christ. It has definitely called me to seek the Lord even more and surrender everything to Him. This may be a girls' book, but it's full of braveheartedness! I can't recommend it enough, and I'm only halfway through it!

Before You Meet Prince Charming by Sarah Mally
To be honest, I thought I had read enough relationship books to last me for a while. But the compelling title (true for me!) and some shining recommendations persuaded me to go for it, and I'm glad I did! Refreshingly pure presentation, but with a relevant and Godly message, it was an instant favorite. I think my favorite aspect of it was that it was geared to girls who came from a like background as me (Christian, with Godly parents, already wanting to be pure, etc.).

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
Surprised? I prayed a lot before I read this series... and strangely enough, God gave me a green light. Or so I thought. More likely I was listening to my own temptations. I can't recommend it to anyone. Though the numerous "you've got to read this book" comments I got could count as "whatever is of good report" (Phil. 4:8), after reading it myself I have to conclude that it cannot count as noble, pure, virtuous or edifying. The values of the characters were contrary in so many ways to God's Word, and it is true that it is portraying evil as good. In many ways it reminded me of the Harry Potter books. Sensationally addictive but not spiritually edifying.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
This was a book assigned for school, but I was glad to finally have the chance to read it. I haven't finished it yet, though I'm close, (and I know how it ends). It's been interesting, but the character of Jane is a bit gloomy, and therefore the book has been too. Still, I've enjoyed it. A couple more chapters to go...

Finally... the best for last!
Ephesians,1 Corinthians, & 2 Corinthians written by Paul, inspired by God
Genesis written by Moses, inspired by God
Proverbs written by King Solomon, inspired by God
Psalms written by King David and others, inspired by God
If you can't read anything else read these! Hugely powerful, educational, and encouraging. :D

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Well, it finally happened. Someone asked why I was wearing skirts so much. I told them that it was because I had become used to them. That was a true statement. Even after wearing them for a week or so, it feels kind of weird to wear pants again, especially jeans. But as I thought about it later, I realized there were some more meaningful reasons that I started wearing skirts more in the first place.

First and foremost, they make me feel feminine. From about age 6 to age 16, I was a definite tomboy. Pink was not my favorite color. I was better friends with Chris and Michael than with Valerie. But there came a point that I realized that being a girl didn't mean I had to be a pink-ruffles-and-bows girly-girl, and I relaxed my guard. I started wearing first jumpers, then skirts to church, because I wanted to. Now, because I want to, I'm wearing skirts on other days.

Besides making me feel feminine, skirts also make me feel modest. I'm not saying that pants and jeans are in all cases, immodest. After all, I do still wear them now and then (actually I am right now as I type this). And not all skirts are modest, although I hope the ones I wear are! But there's something about skirts that, besides being modest in themselves, encourage me to act modestly, to act like a lady*. And that's what matters, really.

Most females I know do not regularly wear skirts. Wearing skirts makes me feel somewhat like a maverick. It's rather fun going against the norm. But skirts also make me feel connected to both women in history (before World War II women wore skirts/dresses as a rule) and real-life current-day Christian families that I admire, including but not limited to a certain group in Wisconsin. ;) It was that WI group more than anything that actually got me started. I'd never seriously considered it before. But if they could wear skirts every day, even living on a farm, milking cows and riding horses, then I could too (minus the farm part)! There was nothing stopping me.

I can't predict my skirt-wearing trends. Maybe someday I'll go 100% skirts. Maybe I won't. But I'm leaning toward the former. I'm ready to stop rationalizing away Deuteronomy 22:5:
A women shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, not shall a man put on a woman's garment, for all who do so are an abomination to the LORD your God.

Therefore, whether you [wear skirts or pants], or whatever you [wear], do all to the glory of God. (paraphrase of 1 Corinthians 10:31) God bless!

*I'll be the first one to admit that I haven't lost all my tomboy ways. I still run, play Frisbee, sit Indian-style, and even climb trees. (Hurray for long flared skirts!) I do, however, still prefer pants for Awana games and dodgeball. Old habits die hard.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ice Rink! (pictures and video)

It's here! After many hours of cold, hard work, our backyard ice rink is up and functional! We are having lots of fun, especially Valerie, Stephanie, and I. We three have used it almost every day. It's 35 x 45 sq. ft. We thought it was funny to tell people that we used buckets to fill it, but actually we used hoses. (More than one because our back faucet stopped working for some reason.) We were very careful to not let water freeze in them.

Chris putting some water in the rink.

A couple kids out on the ice. Closer zoom-up from the same day.

It's great having our own private rink. You can do anything from "change direction whenever you want" to, what else, square dance! :) (Sorry for anyone who can't watch the below video... it's not too amazing :P)

Friday, January 2, 2009

Holidays, 2008 style

I hope you all had a great Christmas! We did, except for a few incidents of the "24 hr" flu. (Who knew that Dad and Chris both have a tendency to black out when they vomit?) This year, my parents' gift to us kids was a trip to the Creation Museum in Kentucky! We went there last spring on the way to Florida and really enjoyed it. Going again at this time of year was great because we could see all the Christmas extras... the live Nativity (above picture), the lights in the gardens, and my favorite - the special "Christmas Star" planetarium show. Plus they have a petting zoo now... no dinosaurs, but there's a camel and a zonkey/zedonk (never found out which one it was) .

For New Year's Eve we did our yearly tradition of everyone making a batch of cookies. (Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that's 10 batches of cookies.) This year I made Cookie Dough Truffles (basically balls of chocolate chip cookie dough dipped in chocolate.. really good if not strictly "cookies"). New Year's Day we did our tradition of donut snowmen... it's quite a junk-food holiday for us, LOL.Hope you all had happy healthy holidays! Thank you Jesus for being the reason for the season!