Friday, August 29, 2008

Back to School

Ken is back to school now; he's oh-so-happy! The evidence is all around me. Greek vocab cards in little piles around the house, chapel programs on the counter, books and highlighters on the mantle. Can you picture it?

And that also means that I am back to Seminary Wives Institute! Yea!

This term, I am in a class on the Southern Baptist Convention. The first three weeks will be about the history of the baptists. The second three weeks, I believe, will be about the institutions and resources of the SBC.

Last night was my first session and I was delighted to learn from Dr. Thomas Nettles, one of the foremost baptist historians in America. He took us, at breakneck speed, from the English Reformation of the 1500's to the first baptist missionaries in 1810.

Ken had a church history class with Dr. Nettles last spring, and he also took a seminary-level SBC class this past summer. It is fun to get a taste of what Ken learned over the past year.


Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Life That Says Welcome

"Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling." 1 Peter 4:9

I just finished reading A Life That Says Welcome: Simple Ways to Open Your Heart & Home to Others, by Karen Ehman. You may have heard of Karen Ehman as a speaker for Hearts at Home ministries.

Any woman looking to hone her hospitality and home management skills will find this book extremely helpful and practical. Ehman addresses clutter control, speed cleaning, home decorating, meal planning and grocery shopping, "hospitality on the road," holidays, Sunday dinner, and many other relevant topics. All the topics are held together with biblical principles and the idea that biblical hospitality is making people feel welcome and wanted.

I particularly like her family focus. She makes clear throughout her book that the first recipients of a woman's hospitality should be her own husband and children, or her immediate family and roommates if she is single. This is clearly biblical, as we can see from the "widow's passage" in 1 Timothy 5.

On making our own families the first recipients of our hospitality, Ehman suggests we consider the acts of kindness we would do for friends coming to visit. We might use special dishes, display flowers, clean the house, light a candle, prepare a fancy dish or decadent dessert. Why shouldn't we do these things for our "closest neighbors," our own families? Get out the fine china for family night--why not? Light a candle--sure! Pray for good conversation--certainly! Clean the house even when no one is coming over--definitely! Be ready with a warm greeting when family members come home--absolutely!

The book is sprinkled with yummy sounding recipes, as well as many ideas for making a richer home life. My copy is marked-up and will be a ready resource on my shelf to spark ideas for years to come.


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Pendergraph, Continued

I forgot to add....the music.

We worshiped together through song and it was a powerful time. Led simply by guitar and a single bongo drum, we sang some great hymns of the faith including "Be Thou My Vision." The great part was being united with all these ladies in worship to our Lord.

And the sound of a roomful of women harmonizing and singing their hearts out....heavenly.


Pendergraph Women's Ministry

I was out past eleven last night.

It's quite rare for me to be out past eight (Teddy's bedtime), so this was quite a treat.

I attended the Pendergraph Women's Ministry fall kick-off event called "Welcome Wagon." The entire evening was a sweet time of Christian fellowship with the dynamite ladies of the Southern Seminary community. We began with food, food, and more food (samples from area vendors). I sat and ate at a table with two women with whom I was at least acquainted and four who were new to me. Two are new to the Louisville area and the seminary, so it was fun to welcome them.

We heard from the Pendergraph faculty liaison, Rayann Jones, about growing in grace. Then we shared around our table what has been on our hearts lately and how God is working in our lives. It was a testimony of the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ to hear everyone's stories.

Pendergraph gives out fabulous door prizes. I'm rarely a "winner" of prizes and drawings for anything. This held true last night. But I will keep entering the drawings at Pendergraph, because one of the giveaways this year will be a one (two?) night stay at the Galt House, one of the fanciest places in Louisville.

After the program ended, many of us hung around to continue our fellowship. I met some other midwestern gals, one a graduate of the University of Iowa and the other an alum of Northwestern College. And none of us really like sweet tea. Cold and bitter, we said, that's how you drink iced tea.


Saturday, August 23, 2008

More Things They Say

Calvin's best line of the day:

"When Teddy chooses a love-a-ly wife that loves God, I will call him and invite him and his love-a-ly wife and children to come over to my home."

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Things They Say

Calvin asked us for some "Calvin and Mommy and Daddy talking time" tonight before bed, which was so sweet that we had to oblige. We asked one another about all of our favorites...flavor of ice cream....favorite candy friends...

When we got around to sports, it went something like this:

Mommy: Calvin, what's your favorite sport?

Calvin: Football with the Green Bay Packers!

Mommy: What's your favorite sport, Daddy?

Daddy: Football!

Calvin: What's your favorite sport, Mommy?

Mommy: Badminton.

Calvin: (squeal of laughter) That's not a sport!

Daddy: That's right, Calvin.

Mommy: But it's the only sport I've ever been good at!

Teddy is surprising us every day with his new words. He has a new favorite...

(While washing his hands and feet in the the sink)
Mommy: Teddy, don't get your blankie wet.

Teddy: Why-ee.

(This morning during morning jobs)
Mommy: Please put your clothes in the hamper.

Teddy: Why-ee.

(At bedtime)
Mommy: Time to pick up your toys.

Teddy: Why-ee.

I really think that my 20-month-old is a little young to be asking "Why?" every time I tell him to do something! It is cute, though, the way he doesn't have proper question inflection yet, and how it is always two syllables! By the way, this two syllable thing, with the "ee" at the end, is how he says just about everything.
Three of my favorites:

brocc-ee (broccoli)

thank-ee (thank you)

nak-ee! (he has no clothes on!)


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Ready For More Minnesota Pictures?

I was so blessed during our trip to have one Girls' Day Out. I met two of my friends from my Campus Crusade days, Sarah and Heidi, in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, for lunch. We started talking as soon as we saw eachother and didn't have so much as a lull until hours later when we parted. Good friends, sweet Christian fellowship ~

Ken and I were hosted by so many friends during out visit, including Jeremy and Marlene ~
And we were able to catch up with the Caldwell family that evening as well ~

The next morning, we drove to Bayfield, Wisconsin, and then took a ferry to Madeline Island. We spend time on Grandpa John's boat. Did you know it's so easy to pilot a 30-some-foot cruiser, even a child can do it? Check it out ~

Our family cottage on Madeline ~
Beach fun in front of the cottage ~

Taking down "Bop" with the swim noodles ~
Lunch on Madeline at Grandpa Tony's, a family favorite ~

An evening cruise on Bop's boat ~

A Superior sunset ~
More beach play with cousins Katherine and Tyler ~

The ferry, headed back to Bayfield ~

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Minnesota, Continued

More from our Minnesota trip...

Along with all the little cousins, we had lunch in Grandma Maggie's garden. The children discovered interesting garden ornaments and played with sidewalk chalk ~

They were so busy it was difficult to catch more than one at a time in a picture. Notice the coordinating Hawaiian clothes on these four busy little bees ~

And one stationary flower ~

A perfect resting spot for a little one ~

We also spent some time with our old neighbors, Mike and Mary Breci. They took us swimming at the YMCA, then back to their home for some rice krispie treats and bubble toys ~

It was fun to be in our old neighborhood again and see some of our dear friends there ~

There's still lots more Minnesota Pics!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Minnesota Trip

We spent the last two weeks of July in Minnesota, visiting family and friends. It was a whirlwind tour, packed with fun...

We began with an all-day drive. The highlight of the journey for the boys was our breakfast stop, a Krispie Kreme picnic at a rest stop ~

Our first morning in St. Paul, Grandpa John and Grandma Patti treated the boys to rides at the Mall of America ~

Our first week in town, Calvin had a playdate with his "Sophie Girl," his sweet little friend who he has known since birth. When we lived in Minnesota, they were together at least a couple times a week, be it in their Sunday School class or on playdates ~

Stay tuned for more Minnesota Pictures!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Time With My Mom

My mom came last week and spent some of her vacation time with us. She was here one brief night, and then she took off in this rented convertible ~

No, we didn't scare her off. She had a wedding to attend in Indiana.

When she returned to Louisville, she and I did some exploring. We took a self-guided tour through Historic Old Louisville, complete with Central Park and St. James Court, which were both beautiful.

The next day Mom and I toured Whitehall House and Gardens. The house was impressive and the gardens breathtaking. Here are just a few highlights ~

This is the side view of Whitehall, with a patio off the butler's pantry ~

The rest of the pictures are from the Whitehall's Italian Garden, which was my favorite ~

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Lyndsay's Visit

My sister Lyndsay came for two days last week. The time was so fun, yet so short.
Here are a few highlights.
Splash Park ~
Tennis "lesson" ~

Family walk ~
Snuggle time ~
Lorikeet Landing ~
(That's a Rainbow Lorikeet eating out of Calvin's hand.)
We love Auntie Lyndsay!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

A Week of Visitors

We've had a wonderful week of mom, then my sister, then my mom again, and then our friends the Frucheys. Hotel Schmidt has been booked solid!

A few photos with the Fruchey family ~

We loved having Ashley and Kalista in our home. They are sweet and polite and fun to talk to. The boys had a ball playing with them and were sad to see them go.

I have to show off these beautiful roses they brought us ~

Our house was fresh and lively for the three days of their visit...from the flowers, but much more so from their friendship. Thanks for visiting us!

Friday, August 8, 2008

What's good about pro football

As you can imagine, the events surrounding Brett Favre and the Packers over the last couple of months have bothered me. I told Kimberly yesterday, "Brett Favre and the Packers have caused me to tire of the NFL before the season even began."

This morning, I read a blog from C. J. Mahaney concerning Art Monk. Take a look at Monk's Pro Football Hall of Fame comments. The difference between the Favre/Packers situation and Art Monk is a matter of humility. The former, and we, could learn much from the humility of a man changed by Christ.

I still enjoy football. Last night my friend Gil and I watched a preseason game. I still love the Packers and Favre. I hope the Pack wins the Super Bowl and the Jets do well. Through this whole situation, Calvin made me smile. The other day he said, "Dad, will Brett Favre be a Viking?" I said, "No, I hope not." He replied, "That's good, because we don't like the Vikings, yuck!"