Thursday, January 26, 2012

Winter Fun

Amy celebrated her FOURTH birthday on the 9th! We had a blast playing a game of bowling. I think Lizzy won with flying colors. Congratulations, Sweetie! And a very Happy Birthday, Amy!

It has been such a warm winter this year, but the past few weeks have finally brought us some cold weather and a bit of snow. Surprisingly, because there has been so little snow we were able to skate on a local lake without shoveling off the snow! This is a bit strange for Minnesota. We normally have several feet of snow on the ground by now. We had SO much fun over at Pebble Lake last week. There were several ice houses out on the lake. One guy was drilling holes that day so Ethan chatted with him a bit. He was drilling 18-20 inches before hitting water. This explains why Minnesotans drive their trucks on the ice. There were about five trucks or cars out there that day. We had so much fun, and though the kids fell a bit, they got right back up and kept going. Fun!

Three Meals Burned!

Haha! This week I burned three different pots of something: rice, beans, and oatmeal. Every time, I was so busy with other things, the pot just kept cooking and the edges burned. I used to never burn meals!!!! At least I was able to catch the problem quickly enough to salvage most of the meal. Well, I think I have an excuse for this crazy behavior as I am doing double duty this week getting ready for my mission trip to Chad Jan. 29th. Getting ready for a mission trip for me means getting myself AND my family ready (even though they are staying behind in America). I am so excited to go and serve there, and my family has been very supportive. I never would have thought I would be going to do this, but God opened the door and my husband counseled me to answer the call and trust God for this step.

While I am gone, my husband and parents are helping with the kids, and some Christian friends are providing a few meals for the family. The last few weeks I have been preparing freezer meals to feed the family on the other days. Today a dear Christian friend offered to watch Amy for the day so that I might complete my preparations. It was such a productive day, and I am SO grateful. Now the homeschool plans are complete for the days I will be gone. Yesterday I prepared some Chore charts so that the kids will be a bit more independent with their chores. Ethan can use them as he wishes, but I thought it would be helpful, anyway.

The kids have been so sweet because they remember to pray for this trip and for Mommy as I go. Yesterday, Gretchen so sweetly prepared cards with verses for each of our six team members who will be serving on this mission trip. I was so grateful to God for His work of grace in Gretchen. She is showing love and care for us, rather than only thinking of herself. What a sweetie.

God provided for all the financial needs of this trip through the gifts of family and friends. Every need has been provided. I even had enough to purchase gifts for the ladies in Chad who will attend the retreat, gifts for the missionary kids, books for the library, and books for a French nursery school. A need has also arisen for help with the transportation costs for some women traveling to the retreat. We were able to also provide scholarships for this need with some of the money we raised for this trip. What an extra blessing this will be for women on a limited budget! God is so good and kind.

One final note before I leave on Sunday: God is good and faithful. Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you. Matthew 6:33 He is gracious, too, even when I burn the food.

Pinewood Derby Baby!

Pack 304 set up at the Cleveland Gym tonight for their annual Pinewood Derby. All the Cub Scouts who completed a car competed against other cars from their age group. Peter John and his dad took it very seriously. Here is Ethan filing and sanding the nails so there are no bumps or nicks to cause drag. I was his assistant, holding down the drill:

We had so much fun watching the races. We brought along a few of the girls' friends, and enjoyed seeing all the unique cars.

Peter John's car won third in his age group. And for a special surprise, Peter won a trophy for "Cub Spirit" because of his attitude and enthusiasm for scouting. We are so proud of him!