30 June 2008

I Declare... A Strawberry Independence for All!

I love Strawberries. I know the more that you read my blog the more that you see I just love everything. Every berry on this planet is my favorite. Blueberries, strawberries, huckleberries; you name it and I love them. I wasn't much of a vegetable kid, but I made up for it in the amount of berries and fruit that I ate. Now of course, I have to eat my vegetables as a good example to my children, but I am still a fruit lover.  I would rather eat a mango than a carrot anyday. Strawberries, as I am sure you have guessed, are one of my favorites. Judging by the boys' reactions to picking this year I would say they are their favorites as well. 

Last week I took Elijah and Josiah out to pick berries. All in all I would say that it was a very successful trip; we picked a total of 8 quarts. Elijah himself picked 1; which is awesome for a four year old. Josiah probably picked just as many, but he ate every one.  We went to the farm in Litchfield, because they are so nice, and they let children in to pick, they don't mind them eating them, and they don't mind me shucking the berries right in the field. Overall, just a really great farm with really great berries.  This was Elijah's second year picking so by the time we got there he was ready to show Josiah just what to do. Of course, by the time that we left Josiah had picking down to an art and was starting to get bored.  There is nothing like watching a red faced two year old pick a strawberry; take a bite out of it; and put the rest into his container. Needless to say, I did not buy those ones, I made him finish them before we left because I was not about to buy half eaten berries. 

We only stayed an hour, but nevertheless we had plenty of time to eat our fill. I encourage you all to start your own family tradition of picking berries, if for nothing else; it is a cheap lunch. So pucker up everyone and get them before they are all gone. Remember there is nothing that reminds you of the upcoming holiday like a fresh quart of strawberries... 

Happy 4th of July!

20 June 2008

Summer Solstice

The lazy dog days of Summer are here! 

Today is the Summer Solstice! For those of you who want to know; the word solstice comes from the two latin words of sol meaning "sun" and sistit meaning "stands". Obviously this is in reference to the fact that the sun seems to stand still on the days surrounding the longest day of the year.  Today for the first and only time in 2008 the sun is directly overhead the tropic of cancer.  Doesn't that make you think it should be warmer today than any of the other days of the year; Not only is the sun the most direct that it will be all year, but it is also shining on us the longest?  Oh yes, the days get shorter from here on out. I am sorry if that depresses some of you, just be grateful it isn't the short days of Winter. 

09 June 2008

Created to Work

I am absolutely amazed sometimes to see how much we are created to work. I had never really thought about it until I had children. Which doesn't really make sense considering that I grew up in one of those homes where you worked as part of the family, and you worked to get money to buy things. Allowances, "mom can I have 5 bucks", and freebies were unheard of in our home. We weren't deprived, in fact, my mother's love language is gifts so you can imagine what Christmas was like; we were just taught to work to fill the gaps that other children seemed to have filled by richer parents.  I don't feel bad about it, and in raising my own children I would rather they learn to work and enjoy it, than have everything given to them. 
The feeling of accomplishment that we get after having completing a task is something that I am sure God has put into us. We were created by God to do His work. I was reminded of this on Sunday in Pastor Sam's sermon. I am to be producing fruit, not just so that I can reap the benefits, but rather so that I can give them back to God.  If the Lord has given me a gift then I am to be using that gift for His glory.  My children are, in fact, not mine; they are His. I need to remember that as I work to train them to love each other and train them to work as Tyler and I do. 

In almost every chore that we do around this house we try to think about how the boys can help us. Some of these things come easy, for example, Josiah wants to help me spread out mulch, and water the plants, and even weed the garden (for now).  Others, however, are more difficult. The excitement of emptying the silverware from the dishwasher has disappeared for Elijah, but he still has to do it. Hey, I don't like mopping, but I like to have a clean floor.  Slowly these boys are learning how we are created to work; now all I have to do is teach them how it is really for God, and not for me.  It is easier for me to just wash the windows than have Josiah and Elijah help me, but it is better for them to help; so I just rewash during naptime.  I pray that the desire to work will always be in their hearts, and they will see how what they do can be put to use by the Almighty. 

"Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men." 
Colossians 3:23

04 June 2008

Josiah Loves Cocoa

This is an older video, as in from February I think, but Josiah is so cute I had to put it on here. 

I will try to post again soon, but just to warn you my computer is losing space and speed very fast. After 8 years I think it has decided it is about ready to retire. I am going to try to get another year out of it, but until I have revived this old lady a little I probably won't post much. I am praying that this revival will only take a week. 

It is nice to know that I have never had a problem with my computer and I will replace it with a Macintosh again, they are the only system to buy. I mean look... No upgrades, failures, tech support, and my system has lasted me 8 years.  And as far as replacing my current system instead of doctoring it up and pulling out its long term care ...  I have to wait until Dave Ramsey says I have enough money.

Until next time, please pray for my computer setup. As I tell Tyler repeatedly: besides the occasional phone call and radio it is my only link to the outside world. Not to mention to my small group of loyal bloggers. 

02 June 2008

The Great American Pastime

Josiah took this picture of the field view from our seat.

I love baseball! I grew up playing this great sport and honestly thought that it was the great American pastime. I mean who wouldn't enjoy playing a good game of ball or even going to watch one. Then I met Tyler... Mr. camping, fishing, hiking, but doesn't really care to throw a ball around a field and watch fat men waddle to the bases. To some extent I don't blame him. When we brought the boys to their very first Portland Sea Dogs game this last week I watched the teams warm up and I must tell you they do waddle. These young guys cannot seem to run very fast at all. Don't they know that you cannot score in this game if you cannot run? As far as games go I think we picked the most boring one to attend, not that it really matters to the boys. They enjoyed the experience, I enjoyed getting to watch a little ball, and Tyler enjoyed the fact that we left before the end of the game. In fact, we left at the top of the 8th inning and the score was currently 0-0. What a game eh?

All in all I think that it was a good time. A little embarassing to be surrounded by men going nuts over a costumed animal, but a good time nonetheless. I would love to go back to a game and watch another, but I don't know if it is financially a good American pastime. A minor league game cost us 50 bucks for tickets, parking and lunch (I didn't even eat). That is NOT family friendly. Oh well, baseball is way more fun to play, and thankfully Elijah and Josiah are very excited to play the game and not just watch the game.