Tuesday, July 31, 2012

takin' a beach day...

who doesn't like a great day at the beach in summertime?
perfect temperatures... sunshine... family... sand... and water.
these are recipes for FUN!
but no one said going to the beach was easy... especially not with 6 adults and 7 kids!
it's WORK!
lookie here...
our awesome spot that my dad jimmy-rigged up with a tarp.
 these two girls have been spending the past 3 days together... and couldn't have been happier about it!
 sand play...

my omi and my littlest... 80 years between these two.
love both of them so much!
my omi was such a trooper at the beach... in the water... splashing with the kids... playing in the sand.
she's 83 years old!
it was awesome!
my kids and their cousins call her omi-omi to differentiate between my mom and her.  ;)
this rock went all over with her.
i also stubbed my toe on it.
she's so cute and yummy!
i just have to hug and squeeze her every chance i can!
there were seagulls... lots of them.
no surprise there.
jumping over the waves with omi.
so. much. fun.
the whole family!
feeling toasty and crisp!
ha ha!
all three of my chicas!
do you know how hard it is to get a picture of all three of them?
ay yi yi!
"NO mommy... i'm digging a hole!"
"i'm SWIMMING mommy!!"
jeez, come on!
just one picture!!
that's all i ask of you!
ha ha ha!
them... and me!
also a very hard picture to get.
clearly baby h wasn't getting the memo to smile and look at the camera.
just one more...
for my phone!!!
ha ha ha ha ha!
man, do i torture these girls, huh?
payback for when my dad did it with us!
eyelashes for miles...
and one silly one from where we had supper.
nice bodies, girls!!!!

another GRAND day at the beach!
we are a little lobster'esque today... but it was fun!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


confession... i have fear about what's in the future.
i have fear that some terrible thing is going to happen.
i have fear that there will be something that is horrible that i can't control.
that i can't take away.
i have fear that someone in my life that i love will become very sick.
God forbid... i have fear that someone i love dearly might die.
i don't want to say i'm obsessed with these fears, but the fact is, they're there.
i was browsing the interwebs this afternoon and stumbled upon this blog.
and i came to this post.
and the line that struck the hardest chord in me... sorta rocked me to the core was this:

Grief births joy in God’s economy.

there it is.
and i knew, without a doubt, that i should not have fear.
i need to give those fears to God because He's in the business of dealing with those fears.
i shouldn't be.
besides we all know that worrying does nothing to help anything.
what's the point?
it just comes back to trusting the one who has my life in His hands.
whatever is coming or not coming...
for some strange reason i feel like i need to keep these words printed on a piece of paper and stick them in my back pocket.
a reminder.
God is in control.
He writes the story for us.
isn't there comfort in that?
that's what i'm holding on to... trying to let go of the fear.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

summer in photos...

we've been busy this summer...
it's been exhausting, but don't get me wrong, it's been awesome too!
i've taken hundreds... probably a couple of thousand pictures in the past couple of weeks.
enjoy these summer collages to see what we've been up to...

little k's bday party... all about OWLS!!!
we love everything about camping.
especially this year since we upgraded to a 23' hard top trailer.
nothing is better than good quality camping time!
big k went to camp... for the first time ever!
i can hardly believe i have a child old enough to attend camp!
i have so very many fond memories of attending bible camp and now she gets to create her own.
i was mildly jealous... but more happy.
the best part?
reading in her journal, "i love camp so much that i want to come back next year!  i've been learning about God and Jesus and i've been doing some fun activities... i love Jesus and he loves me!"
awesome stuff!
she had a wonderful time with one of her best buds!
small group BBQ!
get 10 kids together and they're bound to have a blast!
and all us serious parents enjoyed the shade!
love these people!!!
and a whole bunch of summer goodness right up in here...
randomness... but awesomeness!
this is what summer is ALL about!

Monday, July 16, 2012

and the Lord works...

just in case you had any doubt...
He DOES still work!
it was so evidenced while i was working at VBS this past week.
hearing the kids glorifying God in the music...
seeing the kids enthusiastically lifting their little hands in praise...
watching their eyes like saucers listening to the power in the bible stories...
and praying alongside a young boy that asked Jesus into his heart.
i got that amazing privilege this past week.
wow... still gives me shivers when i think about it.
God is good...
and He does still work.
He works in my life...
He is working in the life of all these kids...
and He can work in yours too!
will you let Him?
(he even received a brand new bible!!)

Jesus said,
"Let the children come to me and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."
Matthew 19:14 (GLT)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

thoughts at vbs...

i'm teaching and helping out at VBS at a local church this week.
it's been fantastic!
and they use such awesome curriculum.
here's some info on it here.
this is the second year i've helped and i cannot say anything bad about the program at this local church (not my home church).
the music is incredible... the games are super fun... the people are all enthusiastic!
and best of all... they invite anyone to come... they do not close the doors to any children.
the first night we already had over 350 kids...
tonight, the 3rd night, i think we were closer to 400.
it's amazing!
(not our VBS group... just found this photo online of another church group doing the same program)

and i have to stop and pinch myself and remember that there are so many unchurched kids here.
so many of them have never been able to hear the gospel before.
i just take for granted that my children know the story of Jesus and His death and resurrection.
i tend to forget that a lot of children have never in their lives heard it.
and that just blows me away!
blows me away that they can come to VBS for fun and games...
and leave with the best news and hear the most amazing true story...
they can leave knowing Jesus!
tonight in the bible story time, they acted out the story of when Jesus prayed in the garden of gethsemane and then was arrested.
it was powerful.
the lights were low, it was quiet, serious.
all week long the kids learn of some thing that we shouldn't worry about... and "TRUST GOD" is added to the end of it.
the main message of tonight's theme, "no matter what people do... TRUST GOD!"
the bible story teachers were asking the children to think about people they've been hurt by.
and then saying that Jesus was hurt by people too... just like them.
the kids were impacted, i could tell.
to tell you the truth... i was impacted!
this story isn't just for the kids... it's for everyone.
we all need the precious grace of Jesus!
(not our group)

it's like i know this story so well that i forget how incredible it really truly is!
i kept thinking to myself, what if everyone i knew and loved...
everyone that i come into contact with every day.
even people i don't know that well but live in my community, go to my church, kids go to school together with mine...
what if all these people suddenly turned on me?
what if i was truly ALL alone?
no one was there for me.
i just kept thinking about Jesus... and everything He went through.
can you imagine being whipped in front of everyone you know?
spat on?
a thorny crown shoved on your head 'til you bled?
and you were completely alone... no one there to help you.
no one there to give you a hand.
i don't have that... thank goodness.
i do have great and amazing and supportive people in my lives.
but when i do feel pain from people...
when i feel rejected and scorned...
when i'm let down...
i know that my saviour felt the same thing.
He felt it tenfold.
He can identify with me.
i can feel confident that He knows exactly what i'm feeling.
(again... not our group... just another church online that did the same SKY vbs program)

and here's the great part...
i can go to Him with this pain in my life and know that He will NEVER let me down.
He went through all that pain for ME!
for YOU!
how amazing!
i cannot WAIT to share the rest of the story with the kids tomorrow night!!
one little girl in our group came up to myself and my co-teacher and said that the story was sad and sorta scary.
it gave both the co-teacher and me an opportunity to say, "you know what? there is the happiest of endings to this story!!  just you wait!  come back tomorrow and you'll see!"
God is writing the story to these childrens' lives and i'm honoured to be a tiny part of it this week.
who knows what God will do with the seeds that are planted at VBS.
there's just one thing we need to do... TRUST GOD!