Sunday, December 30, 2007
We've enjoyed a visit from my brother, Steve, sister-in-law, Lynn, and nephew, Isak, who drove down from MA on Thursday. The boys made their annual trek down to Raleigh to watch high school basketball at the Glaxo Smith Kline Tournament on Friday night, and Mark bought some of the tournament basketballs for the Lighthouse teams. The girls went out for lunch at the Olde English Tea Room. They head back north tomorrow, just in time to shovel their way in to their driveway after a big snowstorm hitting southern New England tonight! I do love North Carolina.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
"Just do the next thing!"
This helps whether you are trying to declutter a hopelessly messy room, deal with a house full of sick children, get through an emotionally trying week, face a daunting challenge, or just get supper on the table.
Here is the poem that was her inspiration:
From an old English parsonage down by the sea
There came in the twilight a message to me;
Its quaint Saxon legend, deeply engraven,
Hath, it seems to me, teaching from Heaven.
And on through the doors the quiet words ring
Like a low inspiration: “DO THE NEXT THING.”
Many a questioning, many a fear,
Many a doubt, hath its quieting here.
Moment by moment, let down from Heaven,
Time, opportunity, and guidance are given.
Fear not tomorrows, child of the King,
Trust them with Jesus, do the next thing.
Do it immediately, do it with prayer;
Do it reliantly, casting all care;
Do it with reverence, tracing His hand
Who placed it before thee with earnest command.
Stayed on Omnipotence, safe 'neath His wing,
Leave all results, do the next thing.
Looking for Jesus, ever serener,
Working or suffering, be thy demeanor;
In His dear presence, the rest of His calm,
The light of His countenance be thy psalm,
Strong in His faithfulness, praise and sing.
Then, as He beckons thee, do the next thing.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Monday, December 24, 2007
Christmas Eve ~
I've been baking up a storm today - 2 apple pies and 3 Cranberry Eggnog Braids so far - so I'll just pause a moment to wish you a joyful and blessed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! We are having our traditional Italian Christmas Eve dinner tonight - crab-stuffed mushrooms, tuna spaghetti, shrimp fettuccine alfredo, meatballs, salad, garlic bread, with cream puffs and Christmas cookies for dessert. Tomorrow morning is a sausage-egg bake, orange wedges, and the Cranberry Eggnog braid. Then dinner tomorrow evening will be glazed ham w/ pineapple sauce, mashed potatoes, cauliflower & broccoli casserole, Holiday Ribbon Jello, and whole wheat rolls, followed by the apple pie. Yummmmeee! Does it seem like FOOD is a big part of my holiday celebrations? I really do like to cook, and my family likes to eat, so the combination works out great!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
A second Joint Commissioning Ceremony was held on Wednesday afternoon, this time for all 4 branches ~ Army, Navy, Marines, and Air Force. Both ceremonies were very impressive. I am so proud of my son, both for what he has accomplished over the last four years and for what he has committed to do over the next four years. My parents and niece were here from MA for the festivities as well. Alex is their first grandchild, so this was very special for them as well.
Friday, December 14, 2007
Amanda sings in the Raleigh Homeschool Girls Choir, and last night was their Christmas Concert! It was a quick 30 minutes, but they sounded wonderful! Afterwards, we met up with the rest of the family at Taco Bell, where they were eating after Eric's basketball game at Franklin Academy. It was one of those "divide and conquer" evenings ~ mom & dad couldn't be at both activities at the same time.
This morning was our TOG Co-op. We moved locations ~ we had been meeting at a small house on our church property which is used for Sunday School space. It was wonderful to have that place to meet, and we didn't have to worry about bothering anyone or making messes, so long as we cleaned up after ourselves. Well, the house's water and septic systems aren't doing so well, so we had to move into the main church building. We really appreciate that we were allowed to do that, since the church is very descriminating in allowing anyone to use the facility. We moms are a bit nervous about the new arrangement, but I think it went fine today. The first question the boys asked when we told them we were moving to the big church was "where are we going to play football?"!!! They have a weekly contest during our lunch hour, and had been playing on the house lawn. But all is well, because there is a small playing field adjacent to the church building as well. It is getting a bit difficult for all of us to get through the TOG reading and assignments at this time of year, with so many holiday preparations and activities going on. We will meet next week, and then take a 2 week break. We are expecting to get back into the groove after the holidays!
After Co-op, we headed to Creedmore for JV basketball games. Amanda's team played a tough game, doing much better against the Christian Faith Center team than during the previous two meetings. Amanda played great, although she is being bothered by a very sore foot ~ I think she might have a strained tendon or something like that on the side of her right foot. Mark wanted to stay and watch the JV boys play, but we had to get Amanda to our children's pastor's house where she was babysitting 9 children for the evening, while the parents enjoyed fellowship downstairs!
Sarah was planted in front of the TV tonight watching her college team, the Appalachian State University Mountaineers, win the NCAA Div. I Football Championship against the Delaware Blue Hens, 49-21!
Oh, and we finally got the ornaments on the Christmas tree tonight! We HAD to wait for Sarah to get home from school....I'll take a picture tomorrow!
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Monday, December 10, 2007
1) Move hitherward the entire assembly of those who are loyal in their beliefs.
2) Nocturnal time span of unbroken quietness
3) An emotion excited by the acquisition or expectation of good given to the
4) Embellish the interior passageways.
5) Diminutive masculine master of skin-covered percussionistic cylinders.
6) Omnipotent Supreme Being who elicits respite to ecstatic distinguished males.
7) The first person nominative plural of a triumvirate of near eastern heads of state.
8) Tintinnabulation of vacillating pendulums in inverted, metallic, resonant cups.
9) In a distant location, the existence of an improvised unit of newborn
children's slumber furniture.
10) Proceed forth, declaring upon a specific geological alpine formation.
11) Obese personification fabricated of compressed mounds of minute crystals.
12) Jovial yuletide desired for the second person singular or plural, by us
Saturday, December 8, 2007
Thursday, December 6, 2007
I just found this site with 50 free apron patterns found on the web:
So run to Joann's and buy yourself a pretty print fabric, get the sewing machine out of the closet, and have a blast!
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
The Tea was wonderful, and has become a much anticipated tradition for our support group. Each table is decorated by a volunteer "hostess" who brings her own table linens, candles, dishes, centerpieces, etc. We had 9 tables, with 6 people at each table. I wish I had a camera so I could have taken pictures. I rely on my daughter's camera, and she had it with her at a basketball game tonight. Oh well. One table at the back of the room had an urn of hot water with various teas and cocoa mixes, and a couple of crock pots of spiced cider. Then two long tables were filled with plates of goodies. I brought tea sandwiches - curried chicken salad with apples & cranberries ; ham & apricot-cream cheese; cucumber & mint-cream cheese. There were other trays of sandwiches as well as cookies, brownies, fruit, mini cream puffs, and other treats. Three ladies and I sang the holiday classic - 14 Days of Homeschooling (* sung to tune of 12 Days of Christmas ) Then Lynn G. led us in some Christmas Carols, while her husband accompanied us on guitar. Her 4 little children sang "Happy Birthday, Jesus", which was absolutely precious. Following that, Dianne Hart presented the Christmas story from the point of view of Mary. It was an enjoyable night, mostly because of the fellowship with the wonderful homeschool moms in our support group. I so enjoy spending time with them, as we talk and laugh and encourage one another. Eileen and I stood shivering and talking in the parking lot for about an hour afterwards, as we have done so many nights through the years. Her husband is a gem, as he shooed her out the door tonight so she could spend an evening relaxing with the ladies while he stayed home and put all FIVE under five to bed ( I'm sure with Ellie's help) Good job, Jerry. :-)
Thursday, November 29, 2007
It's time to unpack my trunk of Christmas books and videos. I have a nice collection of picture books that we try to read through during the month of December. I'm always on the lookout for another good Christmas book to add to the collection. Some of my favorites are:
How The Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski
Jacob's Gift by Max Lucado
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
The Littlest Angel by Charles Tazewell
Alabaster's Song by Max Lucado
The Gift of the Magi by O Henry
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsberg
A Cup of Christmas Tea by Tom Hegg
Saint Nicholas: The Real Story of the Christmas Legend by Julie Stiegemeyer
The Very First Christmas by Paul Maier
I know there are some good ones that I'm forgetting. I'll have to update this list once I get the books out.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
We've got a bunch of basketball games this week. Amanda's JV Girls team played yesterday afternoon against Vance Charter School, and won easily. Today, the MS Girls, MS Boys, V Girls, and V Boys all had games at Franklin Academy - and all lost. I only got to see Eric's game - the V Boys - and although we lost, I thought we played really well. Mark was happy, as the coach, but the boys were pretty disappointed. Franklin Academy is a rival, and they wanted to do better.
Friday, Amanda's team plays at Christian Faith Center in Creedmore, and then we'll hurry down to Cary to see Eric play at Cary Christian. The MS Girls, which Mark also coaches, will be playing Cary earlier that afternoon, so Mark won't be able to come see Amanda play. Then Saturday, Jason has tryouts for town league basketball, and his games will start after Christmas. This time of year, I cannot look at more than one day on my calendar at a time, or I start to hyperventilate!
Saturday, November 24, 2007
We have a full house this week, with Sarah and Alex both home from college, with an additional two friends who are staying with us. Mark borrowed a laptop projector for the week, to which they have hooked up Alex's X-Box 360 - so my living wall is a giant screen for playing video games and watching DVDs. There has been lots of late nights and laughter and music and dancing and munching and teasing ... I am in heaven. :-) It will be quiet when they go back to school on Sunday.
Sarah and friends Bekah and Jenna stayed up all night Thursday night and hit Kohls when they opened at 4 AM on Black Friday ( insane!!) , arriving home at 7:30 AM to fall into bed (and the LR couch) and sleep a few hours. Me on the other hand.... I avoid the stores like the plague on the day after Thanksgiving. I will have to go out today ( Sat. ), but still under duress ~ I just do not like to shop. I did go online yesterday and make a few holiday purchases. That is much more to my liking.
I'll have pictures up as soon as I get new batteries for the camera! Right now I am waiting for AAA to come and change the flat tire on my van. At least it is in my driveway and I am sitting in my warm house with a cup of tea and not on the side of the road somewhere. Yay for AAA!!
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Tony, this explains a lot...
Monday, November 19, 2007
Now, do you know why the Pilgrims sailed to the New World? Most people would say it was to flee religious persecution in England, but that is only partly correct. The Pilgrims did flee England, but they went to Holland, and lived there for 10 years. The were not persecuted in Holland, but were welcomed, and settled into the community there. But the problem was that Dutch society was much more "liberal" than they were, and the Pilgrims saw that their children were being adversely affected by their peers and the surrounding culture in Holland. So the real reason that the Pilgrims came to North America was to rescue the hearts of their children from a culture that was pulling them away from God!
Recommended reading if you are interested in learning about the Pilgrims and Plymouth Colony from someone who was there: "Of Plymouth Plantation: Bradford's History of the Plymouth Settlement 1608-1650", published by Vision Forum. This is a reprint of a 1909 translation (into Modern English) of Governor William Bradford's original journal, which is considered the single most important source of information about the Pilgrims and Plymouth Colony.
Friday, November 16, 2007
Listen to the whole broadcast or click on "listen to adoption testimonies".
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
So I spent 2 days in the hospital, and finally after an endoscopy yesterday, learned that I had an ulcer in the esophagus. They also removed a couple of polyps from my stomach, and have sent those to the lab. I was released last night, and have some meds to take to help the ulcer heal and also to suppress acid production in my stomach, so I have to eat a fairly bland, easy to digest diet for a little while. Good thing Thanksgiving turkey and mashed potatoes isn't spicy!
I'm feeling much, much better. I had pain in my back/chest for 2 days, but it is barely noticeable now. I appreciate your prayers for healing. And I appreciate sleeping through the night without being woken up to have blood drawn for the gazillionth time, and not being hooked up to wires and IVs and sensors that keep beeping because you bend your arm too much..! And nurses are wonderful. :-)
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Share your family's favorites by leaving a comment!
( in no particular order )
2. Iron Will
3. Apollo 13
4. The Sound of Music
6. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
7. Pirates of the Carribean
8. The Man From Snowy River
10. Star Wars
Lord of the Rings would have been high on this list, but it isn't a "family movie" for us, because my younger ones haven't watched it yet ~ mainly because I require that they READ the book first on this one!
There are animated ones we like a lot, like Ice Age, Toy Story, The Incredibles.
But lets go with this list, and see what you all come up with!
Thursday, November 8, 2007
"The purpose of the Ordnance Corps is to support the development, production, acquisition and sustainment of weapons systems and munitions, and to provide Explosive Ordnance Disposal, during peace and war, to provide superior combat power to current and future forces of the United States Army.”
He doesn't know yet what unit he'll be attached to after he finishes his training ~ he should find that out in a couple of weeks.
Please keep him, and all our troops, in your prayers.
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
Really though, their 13-y-o son is evidence that they do have some wisdom to share.
First of all, what is meant by "godly children"? One definition for "godly" is "religious, pious, or having reverence for God". That is a good starting point. But when we talk about having godly children, we are really talking about more than having "religious" children. I looked up "pious", and that can mean "dutiful, kind, devout, pure". "Reverent" means "showing great respect, especially for God". That is the direction we are going in when we talk about raising godly children. Godliness has everything to do with character. I want to raise children who have a deep respect for God and for the Bible, which is His gift to us. I want my children to be kind, morally pure, loyal, honest, responsible, diligent, considerate, courageous, and compassionate. I want them to model themselves after the character of God - to be "godly".
Here are some of the thoughts shared at the meeting last night, by our "panel" and by others:
- What goes in through the eyes and ears has a definite effect on our children's character, and eventually comes out in their actions and attitudes; be very careful of TV, movies, books, magazines, music, video games... what are the values and attitudes being presented? what are the images that are being seared into our children's minds?
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
- Be selective about the people your child spends time with.
1 Corinthians 15:33 Do not be misled: "Bad company corrupts good character."
- Be deliberate in teaching the doctrines of the Christian faith to your children. Do not rely on Sunday School or church children's ministries to do that job for you, because often they are not teaching these things either. The Bible is clear in Deuteronomy 6 that parents are to teach their children.
Deuteronomy 4:9 Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them.
Psalm 34:11 Come, my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
- We must not separate our schools, our weeks, our lives into "secular" and "sacred"; in other words, biblical teaching must happen beyond just "Bible class" or "family devotions" or "Sunday morning". Everything we do either points our children to God or away from Him. The Hebrew method of education is to walk beside our children (our students) and let them learn by example - this is discipleship! It is not lecturing our children and telling them what to think, regardless of what they see in our lives.
Deuteronomy 6:6-7 These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
- Raising godly children takes time - and effort - and might mean we parents have to give up some of our own desires and activities and interests for a time... but the end result is so worth it
Some suggested resources:
A Biblical Home Education: Building Your Homeschool on the Foundation of God's Word by Ruth Beechick
The Seven C's of History and other materials from Answers in Genesis
Passport2Purity by Dennis and Barbara Rainey (a workbook/book/CD set meant to be used in a special parent-child weekend with your child as he/she approaches adolescence)
Heart of Wisdom by Robin Sampson (how to use the Hebrew method of instruction in your homeschool)
GREAT ARTICLE!!!! "Christian Kids Are Too Gentle to Live Amongst the Wolves"
Saturday, November 3, 2007
This weekend was also a Homeschool Pre-season Basketball Tournament in Greensboro, and the Lighthouse Boys Varsity team competed. We had 2 games yesterday, at 4:15 and again at 9:30 ( which didn't actually start until 10 PM) . We left home with a carload of players at 1:30 PM for the hour and a half trip, and didn't return home until 1:30 AM! Mark and the boys returned to Greensboro today for a game at 2:00. We won both games yesterday, against Davidson Co., and Cabarrus Co., but lost today to a sharp and disciplined Upstate Carolina team from SC. I had to keep the scorebook since Amanda was at a church retreat this weekend, so no pictures!
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Simba the Lion and Musical Notes
Monday, October 29, 2007
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified, do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."
Sunday, October 28, 2007
Here is part of Jeff's post:
I believe it was C.S. Lewis who once said, “I do not pray to change the mind of God. I pray because prayer changes me.” Does a God who knows everything, is all powerful, and already knows the future need me to pray for the same thing over and over in order to help Him figure out what is the best thing for my life and the life of Noah (or any of my children, for that matter)? I don’t think so. No, what God has shown Kate and I is that we need to pray because it keeps us in a closer relationship to Him than if we didn’t pray at all. We need to pray because it is important to remember who it is that provides all our needs. We need to pray because prayer - the very act of talking to God - the effort it takes to consciously think about Him – thinking about who He is and how He wants to relate to us – CHANGES US!
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Then last night was Awards Night, held at Coach Kollar's church fellowship hall. Everyone brought dessert and drinks to share. I spent the last couple of days printing out certificates for all the girls and coaches, and getting frames for team pictures for the coach and assistant coaches. Coach TJ spoke, applauding the JV and Varsity girls for their hard work and perseverance, and mostly for their character and their love for their teammates and even for opponents. A neighboring county started a homeschool team this year, and even though those girls had never played volleyball before, they had to compete at the varsity level because of their ages. Our varsity team embraced them and gave them lots of encouragement, staying after a game to practice with them and give them tips, and ended up playing against them in the consolation game at the tournament. That team was our biggest cheering section throughout the whole day ( aside from our own girls/ families), because our girls had been so nice to them. Anyway, I just had to brag on them a little.
Katie, Amanda, Leigh Ann, Melanie, and Wilson
Emily, Kara, Sierra, Katie, Amanda, Cheri, Makenzie, and Wilson
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Passover is the oldest and most important religious festival in Judaism, and celebrates the deliverance of the Israelites, the descendants of Abraham, from slavery in Egypt, and their establishment as a nation of people. The festival of Passover is a 7-day celebration that begins at sunset of the 14th day of the Jewish month of Nisan (read about the Jewish calendar here) - which falls in March or April.
(from Introduction to a Christian Seder )
This teaching aspect is very significant, and I'm afraid it is something we Christians do not take seriously enough. Every year, in the context of family togetherness and celebration, the essence of the Jewish faith and identity is repeated over and over to the next generation.
THIS is who we are. THIS is what God did. THIS is why we celebrate - to remember!
How often do our families gather together, and the grandparents and parents take the time to diligently teach our children what it means to be a Christian, why we celebrate Christmas and Easter and Pentecost and the Fourth of July and
Thanksgiving ( the GOD reasons!), the reasons why we DON'T celebrate Halloween in the same way as others in our community, what amazing things God has done for His people and through His people? It is so important to be deliberate in teaching and passing on our faith and values to our children, and not just hope that they "catch it" from living in our homes.
Up until the Temple was destroyed in 70 AD, the central focus of the Passover was a perfect and unblemished lamb which each family sacrificed and ate as part of a sacred meal. In the book of Exodus, we read the Lord's commandment to the Israelites to mark the lintel and doorframes of their homes with the blood of this sacrificed lamb, to protect them from the 10th plague against Egypt, the death of the firstborn sons. Death would "pass over" the homes of the Israelites, which were marked by the blood of the lamb. Jesus Christ is God's first born son, perfect and without blemish. In God's perfect timing, Jesus became the sacrificial lamb, arrested and put to death during Passover.
John in his gospel noted that Jesus died at the same time that the Passover lambs were being slaughtered in the Temple (see John 19:14) and that like the Passover lambs, none of his bones were broken (the others being crucified had their leg bones broken by the Romans—John 19:32, 33, 36). The idea behind all this was that just as the Israelites were redeemed from Egyptian slavery by an unblemished lamb, now men could be freed from slavery to sin by the Messiah, the Lamb of God.
Death (eternal separation from God) passes over those who are marked by the blood of Jesus, meaning those who in their hearts have accepted him as their Saviour. The Israelites were not "automatically" spared from the judgement on the first born. They had to actively obey God by slaughtering that lamb and putting the blood on the doorframes of their homes. Likewise, Jesus's death doesn't "automatically" provide salvation for all people. We must do our part - actively proclaim him as our Lord and Saviour, and submit our lives to the authority of God. An interesting fact ~ if you act out the putting of blood on the lintel ( top ) of the door, and then the 2 sides of the doorframe as the Israelites did, you create a picture of the Cross.
You can read about more symbols of Christ in the Passover Seder here in "A Jewish Believer's Passover"
I LOVE homeschooling. I would never have learned these things except for the opportunity to delve deeply into history and into God's Word with my children. Homeschooling is as much an education for parents as it is for children!<><
Friday, October 19, 2007
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Monday, October 15, 2007
Friday, October 12, 2007
Fortunately, Lowes Foods ran triple coupons from Wednesday thru today, and I've made 3 trips to the store, with 20 coupons each time ( the limit ). That enabled me to stock up on a few things, although the store was already low or out of several items by the time I got there at 8:00 AM Wednesday morning. I'm trying to be more consistent with my couponing. Some weeks I just don't have time to clip and sort, and then I get behind ~ but it is a great way to save on the grocery bill. The secret is to save your coupons for when an item is on sale ~ then you maximize your savings. Also, if you are blessed like we are to have grocery stores that regularly offer double coupons ( take off double the value of each coupon ) then you can really do well with coupons. When I started using coupons about a year and a half ago, I signed up for The Grocery Game, an online service that tells you which coupons to use at your local store(s) each week for the best buys. Now I am on a yahoogroup for NC called Smartspending, where people share info about deals at the various grocery stores each week. If you don't live in NC, there is also a national Smartspending group.
Jason had another x-ray of his broken arm on Monday. The doctor said it looked fine, but he re-cast the arm because he felt the first cast was too loose. So now Jason is working on filling the new one with signatures. He has to go back in 3 weeks for the next x-ray, and the doctors will decide then whether he can have the cast taken off. It really hasn't slowed him down at all. Yesterday when I went to pick him up from Nathan's house, I arrived just in time to see him getting tackled in a backyard football game with his 2 friends.
The weekend is pretty full. Mark is coaching boys varsity and girls middle school practices tomorrow morning. Then Jason has a soccer game. Sarah and her friends are trying to persuade Alex to go with them to the NC State Fair tomorrow afternoon. The Fair starts today, and we generally take a day off and go every year as a family. But the college kids have to squeeze in their day at the Fair while they can ~ I refuse to battle the weekend crowds!
Tomorrow night we are going to Ken's Korny Corn Maze, in Garner, with several other Lighthouse families. Then Sunday is a day of rest - I HOPE!
We have been studying the books of Exodus and Leviticus these past couple of weeks in our ancient history studies. God was pretty serious about the Sabbath, and I'm getting convicted that we are not honoring that commandment very well, just by going to church and taking a nap. Sunday ( or the Sabbath ) is supposed to be a day set aside, a day to recover and reconnect and rejuvenate, a day to set aside the normal hustle and bustle of our busy lives, a day to focus on family and relationships and fellowship with God and with one another. I don't think I am doing that very well.
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
GoodSearch donates 50% of their earnings to participating charities and non-profit organizations designated by their users! When you go to the main search page, you type in the name of the group you want to support ( or use their search feature ). You can support the same group every time you use GoodSearch, or choose a different group every time. It is up to you!
Groups receive approximately 1 cent for every search. Our homeschool association is now signed up, so you can help support Lighthouse, including Lighthouse Sports, by choosing Lighthouse Christian Homeschool Association - Youngsville, when you do a GoodSearch!
Saturday, October 6, 2007
Since this was a morning event, we decided to bring some muffins, juice, and coffee. When I was at the grocery store yesterday, I picked up a box of blueberry muffin mix off the shelf and looked at it ~ it would be quick to whip up and would probably taste okay. But I couldn't do it! Muffins are so darn easy to make, and homemade muffins wouldn't have ingredients in them that I can't pronounce! So I bought a bag of frozen wild blueberries instead, and came home and pulled out my favorite blueberry muffin recipe.
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup orange juice
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup canola oil
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries
1 cup sifted confectioners sugar
1-2 Tbl orange juice
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 12 muffin cups, or line with paper or silicone liners. In lg. bowl, combine rolled oats and orange juice; stir well. Lightly spoon flour into measuring cup; level off. Add flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda, oil, and egg to rolled oat mixture. Mix well. Stir in blueberries. Fill prepared muffin cups about 3/4 full. Bake at 400 degrees for 18-22 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from pan and cool on rack. When still slightly warm, sift confectioners sugar into a small bowl; add juice until it makes a thin glaze that will pour off a spoon. Drizzle glaze over the tops of the slightly warm muffins.
I love this song! I read the words to this song as part of my devotion at our homeschool support group meeting the other night. As homeschoolers, it is easy to start listening to the negative "voices" that surround us, telling us that we are weird, that we are not qualified to teach our own children, that we will ruin these kids and they'll never be able to get along in the "real world", and on and on and on. Sometimes these voices come from family members, sometimes from the media, sometimes from friends or neighbors or church members, sometimes from our own feelings. Homeschooling takes place in the middle of life, which tends to be messy. Cars and appliances break down, kids get sick, roofs leak, siblings don't always get along, babies fuss, meals need to be made, nerves get frazzled. The local school, with that smiling teacher and her well-planned lessons in her sun-shiny classroom filled with every imaginable teaching tool and bright, eager students, starts calling our name. In our weakness, we let doubt and anxiety and fear and frustration creep in, but these things do not come from the Lord. They are from the Deceiver, who would like nothing better than for us to abandon our plans to instill godliness and character and moral values in our children along with academic excellence. And the reason they creep in is that we take our eyes off of Jesus, as Peter did when he stepped out of the boat onto the water, walking toward Jesus' outstretched hand. As soon as he looked around him at the wind and the waves, he lost heart and started to sink. ( Matthew 14 ) If the Lord calls us, won't He give us what we need to do whatever it is? I have seen God provide for us many times over the years, and I am watching in awe now, as God is demonstrating His power and provision in my friend Eileen's life in miraculous ways! It isn't because we have things all together or have any special abilities. It is because God chooses to work through weak, imperfect human beings, for His Glory!!
"My grace is sufficient for you , for my power is made perfect in weakness..." 2 Corinthians 12:9
Friday, October 5, 2007
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Between volleyball games, basketball tryouts, baby shower, graduation meeting, Lighthouse meeting, car trouble, ..... I just haven't been able to fit in more than a quick dash to the store to get a few items each day. Good thing there is a grocery store 1 mile from my house. As soon as I can catch my breath, I AM going to go through my coupons, make a decent list, and go for a real shopping trip. I'm ready for some GOOD meals; not just thrown together quick ones, eaten on the fly.
Okay, time to regroup.
Monday, October 1, 2007
In essence, this is what we covered:
- Graduation is the 1st Saturday of June ( June 7, 2008) at 2:00 PM
- Ceremony length is 1 1/2 - 2 hours long
- Graduate attire is black caps and gowns, with tassles and stoles of different colors, as chosen by each grad
- Processional and recessional are played by the Lighthouse Homeschool Band
- Diplomas are the responsibility of the parent, and they may create their own, or order from one of several different sources
- Parents present the diploma to their own son or daughter, and have 2-3 minutes for remarks
- Each graduate presents his/her mother with a single rose
- Power Point slide show features 6-8 pictures of each grad - a "slice of life"
- Simple reception follows the ceremony in the church fellowship hall
Other things we touched on were the Senior Picture Day at Winn Portrait Studio, to be scheduled for this fall; Group photo day, usually held in the spring; additional social events throughout the year for the graduating seniors; yearbook senior pages; programs, and invitations. A suggestion was made that perhaps we could videotape the seniors, one at a time, giving a short message to their families, moms, etc., and play it at the beginning of the ceremony.