June 29, 2009

These Days - Part 1

A month back or so Elizabeth and I were reading the story of Jericho in her kids Bible. I was reminded how familiar I used to be with the stories of the Old Testament, and decided it was time to do some study there. It was very opportune, because we had just finished up our yearly women's Bible study, the latest of which had involved daily readings and questions. So I needed new devotional material. I wasn't sure where to begin, but "something" - Holy Spirit be thanked and praised! - prompted me to start reading the book of Joshua, from whence comes the story of the "battle" of Jericho.

I started reading.

Over the course of several days, I made my way through all 24 chapters. Since there was a lot of history and geography with which I wasn't familiar, I decided to read through it again, this time reading a chapter from Joshua and the accompanying commentary from the New Bible Commentary. I also printed a map of the promised land and how it was divided among the tribes, so I had some clue as to where they were talking about! In true OT style, there are many lists of cities, towns, and other landmarks mentioned as the tribes are settling into their new territories.

I'm now quite close to the end of this second phase of study. I cannot express how immensely important it has been for me to be in the book of Joshua. (Again, Holy Spirit be thanked and praised!) I had a little extra birthday cash and purchased another, more thorough commentary as well as this study. I'm anticipating - at my pace - a couple more months of reading and learning. The motivation and the perseverance I owe only to the Lord. I'm not sure how I got here, why I'm eating this up so much, or where it will take me. But for now I will stay in this book.

Some thoughts thus far
In Joshua, the Israelites FINALLY enter and possess the land God promised them as far back as Abraham. It is beautiful. It is profound. After hundreds of years of waiting, there is rest in the land. After decades of manna, there is fresh food from the land. After longing, there is fulfillment. I cannot imagine what it would have been like to be there, to have waited, and then to have seen God fulfill every one of his promises in my generation! Wow. The story can take your breath away.

But there's way more to it than that. The most emphatic truth that hits your heart and jars your senses is this: God is God and He is Holy. He must be dealt with and related to on His terms. He is good. He's slow to anger and abounding in love. But first and foremost, He is Holy....

More reflections to follow. How's that for leaving you hanging?!

June 28, 2009


E got stung by something a few days ago. She didn't notice till well after we'd come in from the playground. Then it was really bothering her. All I knew to do with it was try the baking soda and water paste. I'd never done it before, but here's photo documentation of the treatment. The results speak for themselves.


After about 10 min of the paste

After a second paste treatment
She never complained about it again.

The original reason I took the first picture, was so she could see what was on her back. I love the digital age; we didn't have to try to work it out with mirrors, I just took a picture and showed it to her. Sweet. Then the treatment worked so well, I had to take "after" shots!

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Summer! - Part 2

After Brian's morning nap on Saturday, we left dad at home working on a project and went to a splash park near the library that we frequent. There's not much to it, but we'd passed it all winter, and E was excited for the 2009 inaugural visit.

The water feature.

E never got quite brave enough to go through.
It was cooler late morning than it had been earlier.

Brian was really into it!

A shot of E thorough the mist.

Snack time!

We discovered a toddler play area around the corner.
Much safer for the bubby.
We'll be back here again soon!

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Summer! - Part 1

Elizabeth has been anxiously awaiting the end of school and hot weather to be able to play in the water at the many fabulous splash parks in Cambridge. School ended last week and summer has arrived this weekend! Mr. Sunshine, you are VERY welcome here. Please stay a long time!

Yesterday (Saturday) morning we got breakfast at Dunkin Donuts and then visited a near by park that Colin had never gotten to see. It's got a name, I'm sure, but I call it "the one across the street from the Science Museum."

We saw this draw bridge go up a couple of times to let boats out into the bay. And we saw a couple trains go across when it was down. Each direction is on a separate control, so they can lift half or both.

Aren't these two handsome?

We found where the Duck Boats live when they're not busy giving tours.

It was an gorgeous morning!

We played a little at the park and then had to go for two reasons: there's no bathroom at this park, (major oversight in the park's development), and Brian had to nap.

June 25, 2009

7 Hours

I got to sleep 7 uninterrupted hours last night!!!!!!

Perhaps this does not seem like much, but I don't remember the last time this happened. Before the sicknesses, Brian would still wake up and hang out for a while in the middle of the night. (I think it's related to getting teeth. I don't have to go to him, but he keeps me awake by making noises every 15 minutes for an hour or so.) Since the plague began, E would randomly cough several times, waking me. And most recently with his digestive illness, Biran's been waking up before 5 because he's been starving but virtually appetiteless.

I think we're almost in the clear. There are some lingering coughs, but the bubby - a shortened version of "chubby bubby" - woke up happy today, drank milk, watched the Little People,* and played with toys. All without tons of fussing! And it was AFTER 5am!!!!!

Praise God for sustaining us through the fussing and helping me to function on very interrupted and short nights of sleep.

And the icing on the cake of this day?


* I let the little guy watch tv, oh yes. Little People videos are really cute. Brian even responds to them with giggles and animal noises!

June 24, 2009

Truth for Life

Quite some time ago (maybe years), I caught a sermon by Alistair Begg on the radio. I don't remember the time or the place, but he was doing some serious preaching an I wanted to hear more. I've heard him on a handful of occasions since, but never gotten into the habit of listening. Several months ago I tried to tune in through the Truth for Life website, but couldn't download for one reason or another. (I never did figure it out and Colin didn't seem to understand it either.) After getting the most awesome mother's day gift ever, this lovely purple iPod, I realized I could get podcasts from Truth for Life through iTunes. Horray!!! Now I listen while I wash the dishes in the evenings.

What a blessing it has been.

Friends, if you want to
  • hear the Bible preached with love, passion, and boldness,
  • learn about who God is, and
  • be challenged and encouraged in your faith
then tune in via Truth for Life. If we ever visit or live in Cleveland, you'll find me in a pew at Mr. Begg's church for sure! This man is in the calling for which God created him, no doubt about it.

PS Added bonus: Begg is from Scotland, so not only do you get to hear good preaching, you get it in a cool accent. :)

June 23, 2009

Not much going on here in our world. The kids are sick. Elizabeth's had a fever just shy of a week - we'll see if she wakes up with one today. Brian's fever peaked at 104.2 on Sunday, followed by a favorable ER visit. It's some kind of virus that will hopefully pass soon, no ear infection or lung problems. His fever was gone yesterday. Still, neither of them are eating very much.

Despite their illness, I did take them to a couple of places. Thursday afternoon we went to a one-time puppet show at the library. It was delightful! Saturday morning Tee Ball ended. Elizabeth was never super into it, partly because it was poorly organized so the kids did a lot of standing around. If she'd gotten to be more active, it would have been more appealing. I think. But who knows? But I wanted her to finish up her commitment. All the kids got a nice medal for participating!

Sunday was probably the WORST Father's Day ever for Colin. The weather here has been abysmal - grey, rainy, and depressing. I'm teaching Sunday school this summer, so I had to go to church for that hour. Colin was left home with two sick kids. That was Elizabeth's worst day, she spent most of it on the couch and clocked at least 8 hours of tv time! Brian got that high fever and a trip to the hospital. We did treat Colin to breakfast in bed and he and Elizabeth enjoyed some bonding time there over breakfast. (Brian was not invited; he's much to wild when he gets a chance to romp around on the bed!) I think we'll be celebrating Father's Day next Sunday... Colin deserves much, much more honor and celebration than he received this weekend. We love you, husband and daddy!

What is a post without some pictures?

Brian's new favorite activities involve carrying things around, particularly the yellow bat and my dish towels. The latter drives me crazy, because I go to dry my hands and the towels are in the next room!

Elizabeth could hardly contain her enthusiasm at receiving her medal.

Brian's been starting his days early
and with the television.

We have enjoyed some fun play times.
Take that, you virus!

"Hey look, I've got a fever!"

"Me too, but I'm trying not to show it."

Morning Brian.
He's loving this table.

Happy Father's Day, dad!

Elizabeth konked out in the middle of the day.

What a lively Father's day!

Brian models his new robot pjs.

June 20, 2009

Look Out!

Any of you familiar with the Strawberry Girl and a Strawberry World Strawberry Shorcake song? If you're not interested in watching the video below, the chorus goes like this:
Jump and clap and turn around
Make a big strawberry sound (2x)

In the evenings after Brian goes to bed, we've been playing a game with Elizabeth called Sleeping Queens. (Sidenote: It is SUCH a fun game!!!) In the middle of the game last night, E was losing focus and the silliness was escalating. She was lying on the couch and started singing the above chorus. Then she sang these new lyrics:

Jump and clap and turn around,
I'll donkey kick you to the ground.

WHAT?! Visitors beware, you just might get donkey kicked when you least expect it!

June 18, 2009

Good-bye Kisby Family

As things go around here, we're in moving season. Old friends are moving out and new neighbors (soon to be new friends) are moving in.

This weekend we said our farewells to the Kisbys. They embarked on a month-long, cross country journey to their new beginnings in California. Sadly, I didn't get a picture with Veronica, but here are the kids. We'll miss you!

Elizabeth with Lance & Spencer.

Brian and Ivy.
They were born a week apart last year!

Book Report

I've posted my thoughts on the book Boundaries with Kids here. I highly recommend it. If you are a parent, get a copy from the bookstore or the library. You will not be disappointed. Whether you feel like you're doing a pretty good job or really blowing it as a parent, you will benefit from reading what Henry Could and John Townsend have to say.

June 17, 2009

Busy Baby

Brian can walk!

He also surprises us on occasion by remaining interested in something for quite some time. This is a brief clip, but he played with these for 5 to 10 minutes!

Wednesdays This Summer

The Cambridge libraries offer free or discounted passes to many museums and attractions in an around Boston. A few weeks back, someone was getting a Museum of Science pass while I was at the library, so I chose a day and got one too. This turned into deciding that I would take the kids out on Wednesdays this summer, rotating through the Museum of Science, the zoo, and the Children's Museum. I'm excited for this time with them, grateful for a summer with a toddler and not a newborn, and delighted at how interested Elizabeth is in all of these places. It's also nice to be able to tell Elizabeth that if we're not able to get to something, we'll be back in 3 weeks. You can reserve the passes pretty far in advance, so I've got a nice queue of them to be picked up at the library as the weeks go by.

We began these Wednesday excursions last week at the Museum of Science.

Climbing the stairs to see the Tamarinds.

Riding a bike and watching what's going on with your bones.

A live animal show.
We didn't make it through the whole thing.

I can't believe this photo came out so well!
I love it.

Today we continued the new tradition at the Franklin Park Zoo. Seriously, we could not have asked for a better day! The sun was shining, (after many days of grey and/or rain), and the temperature was perfect.

Happy and energetic about the outing.
(Note the turned carseat for the big boy!)

E and the giraffes.

E took this shot of the Tree Kangaroos.

Brian stretching his legs at lunchtime.
He's enjoying the outings too!

E's had a fever the last 2 days,
so the zoo wiped her out.

I'm so excited about these outings with the kids throughout the summer!
Stay tuned for more photos and stories, if there are any interesting ones.