Tuesday, September 22, 2009

All American Root Beer Cookies

So, our last two weeks were spent in the good ol' USA. Most of the suggested foods were either things we eat on a regular basis or Native American dishes we ate last year when we studied them. So, since Mommy was also courting full on PMS, we made cookies. Root Beer cookies. Mmm. They were VERY rich.

The kids liked them okay, but I realized I would eat them all. So I gave them to our sweet Korean neighbors.

We made them again with peppermint extract instead of root beer extract. And we added Andes mint chips. And didn't frost them. And they rocked. I think this will be our new chocolate chip cookie recipe. The only problem is that they cook VERY fast. So you really have to watch them.

Yesterday we left the States (virtually) for Mexico. I promised the kids we would make tamales and a pinata. Intercession is welcome.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

He's got the whole world....

on a cake!

The kids and I are embarking on a trip around the world this year. The kids all have faux passports and as we travel we will add stickers to the passports for each country. One of our first projects was to make a map of the world - on a cake. We made a wonderful chocolate mint cookie cake. I discovered that freehanding a map of the world is harder than you would think. I wasn't intending to be so egocentric and have North America so large, but I started on the left and went right. So Asia got squished. And then eaten. Nate insisted that we use sprinkles for the major mountain ranges to it would be a physical map.


2 boxes chocolate cake mix
2 eggs
1 cup oil
1/4 cup water

Mix together. It will be quite thick.

Add 1 bag Andes mint chips.

Pat into a large greased jelly roll pan.

Bake at 350 for 15 minutes.

Cool and ice as desired.

What happened...

to my wee Gabey's hair? He used to have soft, fine, straight hair.

Then, in the last few months, he has turned into 'FRO BOY! Look at these curls! Daddy says God gave him curls so he can play Keith Green when Daddy does the remake of "No Compromise" in 20 years.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Nate's New Glasses

Cute, eh?

My studmuffin!

This is my man.

I've been thinking about how I treat my husband. I've been reading two really good books lately (Love and Respect and For Women Only - both highly recommended) and been convicted about how I talk about and treat my honeybun, especially in public or in front of the kids.

To be honest, sometimes he acts like an idiot. He's human, just like me, and I sometimes act like an idiot too. We're both sinners, saved by grace, and it's no surprise when we act like fools.

But my reaction to his failings (which are few - he is a fantastic dad and partner), is not what it should be. It's like I don't want anyone to think I'm approving his behavior or that I think what he's doing is okay. So I frown and purse my lips and make a show of my disapproval. Just so everyone knows that I agree with their assessments.

And sometimes, it's not really a failing or a sin that makes me cringe. It's just that he's being dorky. Or silly. Or trying that atrocious British accent in public. Or just basically not me. And I still want to disengage. To let others know that I'm really not WITH him. That I know he's being a dork.

But that's not what I'm supposed to be doing. I'm supposed to be his helper, his cheerleader, his encourager and biggest fan. Even when he's being a dork. Who cares what others think? Am I more worried about their opinions or the those of my God and my man?

So from now on, I stand by my man. Horrid accent and all.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Susannah wrote this lovely little song. Do we have a wee Chris Tomlin on our hands?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The zoo, the zoo, the zoo is on fire!

So I've been busy for a few months, but I'm back now. And I did promise pics of the fire shirts, so here we are:

These pics are from a zoo trip in May. We really got good use from our Dallas Zoo passes the last couple years, but we're checking out the FW Zoo this year instead.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Apparently, I'm awesome.

I think I'm a pretty decent cook. I try hard to serve my family tasty, nutritious meals. Heck, I grind my own wheat for bread. Well, apparently, last night I outdid myself. As we were eating, my eight year old proclaims, "Mommy! You are the most amazingest, most beautifulest, most wonderful woman in the whole world. All the daddies in the world should WISH they'd married you."

What, you ask, inspired this praise?

That's right. Jiffy freaking Corn Muffins. Sigh...

(Pics of the Fire shirts are coming. Just can't find the camera. Again.)

Monday, May 04, 2009

What is it going to take

For God to get through to us? I keep living my life like a normal American, comsumed with the busyiness of life. Sure, I do few things I feel honor God. You know, we say grace, we read the Bible, we go to church, we try not to swear. Heck, we even school our kids at home so we can teach them about Him.

But am I really all that different? When are we going to come to the place where we really change it all up? Where we reject the consumerism that binds us and run wholeheartedly after God. Where we start getting rid of things and debt and every sin that so easily entangles us and start visbly showing His love to the people around us.

I came across this today and was just floored. How can you look at those faces and not have your heart be broken? The kids and I are going tonight to find a Compassion child to sponsor. And we are going to see what we can do to free up money in our budget to sponsor more.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

What do you call.....

a girl who loves to cut everything with scissors?

A Cliptomaniac!

Cowboy roundup meal and tie dye shirts, part one

So here are the Ocean tie dyed shirts. After washing, I remembered that last year's shirts were much brighter when we left them overnight. Oh well. I do like the colors though. The kids would NOT sit still for a picture, so here we are:

Then we had our Cowboy Round Up meal. It was nasty muddy outside, so we ate at the table instead of our fake campfire in the backyard. We talked about cowboy clothing and why the cowboys wore bandanas. I gave them a hint, "It's something that bothered you at t-ball practice the other night." (I was looking for "mosquitos" or "bugs"). Abby starts frantically frantically waving her hand, "I know, their tags were itchy!!!!" What??

Baked Beans
BBQ Brisket

The kids liked their meal and afterwards we took them for a walk around the neighborhood with their ponies. Daddy showed them how to poke an ant hill with their stick ponies. You know, 'cause that's a life skill.

Daddy was a good sport too:

We'll wear the Fire t's tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tie Dye

I love watching the Duggar family on TV. Nate says, "Mom, we should totally have that many kids - it would ONLY be 13 more." Gulp.

Nate's wishful thinking aside, I really do admire this family. I just finished their book and got some great tips for parenting a large family. One thing that I've noticed is that when they go out as a group, they wear matching clothes. This makes it easier for Mommy and Daddy to keep track of everyone.

Well, because we are such a PFUN pfamily, we can't just do matching clothes. We have to make our own TIE DYE matching clothes. Last year we did two sets, brights and camo. This year we changed it up a bit.

This is the dye kit we used.

The dye bottles inside look like this. You just mix with water.

Start with your plain white cotton shirt (don't use cruddy poly/cotton).

Get it wet, and wring it out. Pinch the middle and let the rest hang down. Apply rubber bands and 2-3 inch intervals (see the shirts on the sides above).

Apply the dye. Really squeeze it down in there, as it is going through many layers of cloth. We called these "Fire":

And these "Ocean":

Cover with trash bags and let the dye set for 6-8 hrs. Clip off the rubber bands and throw the shirts into the washing machine. Wash 2-3 times until the water is clear.

Free tips:
#1 Use better gloves than the ones that come in the kit. My hands look terrible.
#2 For super bright dye, leave overnight before rinsing.
#3 Do not use the sorry cheapo trashbags to protect your counter. They don't (protect). Use the Hefty's.

Tomorrow I'll show you the finished products! And we are celebrating the end of our horse unit with a cowboy roundup! (We are forgoing the suggested backyard bonfire. I don't think our neighbors would appreciate us burning down their houses.)

Thursday, April 09, 2009

What we do in our free time

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Family Rule Phylacteries

Today we read Deuteronomy 11:18, "Fix these words of Mine in your hearts and minds, tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads." We discussed the difference between being a Pharisee (just making an outward show of following God) and being a true disciple (hiding God's Word in your heart). We then came up with some family rules and made phylacteries with them.

The kids liked wearing them on their hands.

Anna sang us a song about the rules. She likes to sing.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

A horse is a horse

Our next topic of study in our obedience unit is horses. We are reading "King of the Wind" by Marguerite Henry. Today we made stick horses out of paper bags and newspaper.

Later, we taped them onto the kids' bikes and rode our "horses" around the neighborhood. Yes, folks stared at us. We are used to it.

Can you say "petulant 3 year old"?

Studying light

We've made several fun projects during the first two weeks of our Konos study of light and authority.

We made a lighthouse.
We talked about how God gives us authorities (governments, teachers, parents, etc) to help guide us from danger. We affirmed God's Word as the one immovable, totally trustworthy "lighthouse" in our lives.:

(I googled "building a model lighthouse" and you would not BELIEVE the crazy instructions I found. Who needs to build a two story lighthouse in your backyard? Are you deterring ships?)

We built a lantern and walked around in the dark. We talked about how God's Word sheds light on our immediate path and we need to trust that He will give us the light we need, when we need it. Looking too far ahead can cause fear, we need to simply trust and walk in the light He gives us now.

And finally, we made our own candles and enjoyed a candlelight supper. Philip said this was wicked messy and asked for Konos' address so he could send them a "thank you for giving my wife messy ideas" card.

First, I chopped up a block of paraffin:

Then we broke up crayons and added them for color:

We melted the crayons and paraffin over a double boiler (note, if you desire trying this: do not use the pan you plan on using for supper that night.) We also added some peppermint essential oil.:

We took empty one quart milk cartons and placed wicks in the center. We added ice cubes and some random other broken crayons (the kids wanted polka dots in their candles):

We poured in the wax. This was very messy. A funnel would have helped. A lot.

When they were solid, we peeled off the cartons:

Then we enjoyed our candles at dinner. It was neat when they burned low, as the light flickered through the holes created by the ice cubes.

Now we are moving on to our study of horses. Lots o' fun! More projects to come in the future!