Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy 'Dress Up & Get Candy' Day

Today is one of Frankie's favorite days of the year and to be honest, why wouldn't it be.  After all, when else is it appropriate to dress up and go up to complete strangers and they hand you candy!  

Usually Frankie would go out with her sister, but Abigail was out with friends tonight so I was the stand in.  Our church is having a fall festival event on Sunday so tonight we went to the Trunk or Treat event at the church by our house.  

The trunks were decorated and so were the grown ups handing out candy, everyone was very gracious.  There was a fire truck to tour and games to play.  She had a great time and when we came home she enjoyed handing out candy to the neighborhood kids. 

Jonathan said, “My father has made trouble for the country.
See how my eyes brightened when I tasted a little of this honey.  
I Samuel 14:29

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Happy Francis Marie Day

This should be the warm, fuzzy tale of anther celebration of another year as the mom to the most wonderful young lady you can imagine.  But like most things, somewhere along the way, things went horribly wrong! But, I suppose I should start back at the beginning:

To celebrate Frankie’s special day, I pre-purchased tickets to a local pumpkin patch.  I specifically selected one we had never visited, to add to the excitement of the day.  I carefully made sure we attended during the early hours of operation and not after dark when they bring out the scary element.  The girls and I arrived, blissfully enjoying their wonderful petting zoo. Frankie and Abigail fed the goats and sheep.  There were cows and a Longhorn to pet.  

The family farm had a wonderful patch of gourds to peruse. I’m talking lots of giggling and fun.  Next we set out on the hayride.  To properly set up the scenario, I should mention we’ve had a lot of rain, it was muddy.  At one point the trailer tire got high centered in the mud tracks, clipping a tree, pulled the 16’ tree down on the trailer hitting the driver of the tractor in the head.  The driver gets untangled out of the tree limbs and off the tractor. But, the tractor keeps moving because of the weight on the seat from the tree did not allow the kill switch to disengage when the driver jumped off the tractor.  The driver was able to run around and get the tractor stopped.  The driver was cut up, bloody and had one heck of a headache but OK.  No one on the trailer was injured. 

We got off the trailer and walked back down the trail while the men helped move the tree and free the tractor and trailer.  As we were walking down the path Frankie said she did not want to try anything new again! 

Many are the plans in the mind of a man,
    but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.
Proverbs 19:21

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Speaker's Club Motivation

I just love our PEACH Speaker's Club!  The kids are learning to purposefully organize their research and opinions and then to stand confidently present their material in a group setting.  Today Abigail presented a piece she wrote on the motivations to volunteer.  

Most adults would get nervous standing in a group and speaking, but with encouragement and training these young people stand comfortably before their peers.  This is Abigail's second year in Speaker's Club, Caleb also participated for two years before graduating.  It has been wonderful to see how well this has served him being able to at the college level stand before 2,000 in chapel.  Even if it just gives the youth confidence to speak in a job or college interview what a blessing!! 

Righteous lips are the delight of a king,

    and he loves him who speaks what is right.
Proverbs 16:13 

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Back to the Future

If you haven't checked your clocks, today marks the 'future' for Marty McFly and Doc Brown!  Frankie has seen all the Back to the Future movies but Abigail had only seen portions of some of them.  

Notice not only is the date correct but the movie start time is 4:29 pm!  The girls were wildly amused at the fashion and hair from the 80's.  It was even more fun to show them what the stars of the movie look like now!  Funny that Doc Brown looks the same! 

Listen to advice and accept instruction,
    that you may gain wisdom in the future. Proverbs 19:20 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Lubbock Christian University Chapel

This morning the girls and I were volunteering at Metro Relief.  I generally shut my phone off while we're there because it is a huge distraction.  When we came home at lunch and I checked my phone I had texts with these great shots of Caleb reading scripture at Lubbock Christian University's chapel. His Honors professor was responsible for organizing chapel today and asked Caleb on the way to chapel if he would help lead!  How cool is that.  No, Caleb never mentioned it, nor would he.  But I'm so thankful for his friends who sent me the pictures, it makes me thrilled to see him feeling so comfortable in his new grown up world! 

Start children off on the way they should go,

    and even when they are old they will not turn from it.
Proverbs 22:6 

Sunday, October 18, 2015

My Bible Bowl Superstars!

The college kids stuck around for a little bit Sunday afternoon to encourage my Bible Bowl kids!  Needless to say the kids were thrilled to have the big boys in class!  I gave them a little quiz over Joshua chapters 3 & 4 and the big boys helped them out with the answers.   I love the legacy the big boys have passed to the younger kids.  When Caleb and Richard began with Bible Bowl, Joshua, Judges and Ruth was their first year; and now many of the kids pictured are in their first and second year of Bible Bowl because of the encouragement they have received from the big kids. 

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. I Timothy 4:12

Friday, October 16, 2015

Time with Friends

The kids spent the day and most of the evening with friends. They popped in on the PEACH drama club say hi to the younger kids.  Later in the evening they met up with their high school friends for dinner and to hang out.  They even made time for a board game or two with the family!  J.J. killed it at Monopoly, I'm still demanding a rematch!! 

The girls and I did our best to keep them fed load them up with snacks for the trip home on Sunday.  I've got to say, I love the energy of having a full house of kids again!  

Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come  Ecclesiastes 12:1 

Thursday, October 15, 2015

PEACH Science Night

Each school year our home school group hosts a PEACH Science Night with Dr. Brian Reed of Thinking Reeds. Dr. Reed teaches math and science classes from a Christian world view.  Dr. Reed presented the kids with great ideas for the upcoming science fair.  

The boy's friends were thrilled to see them tonight.  They had a lot of catching up to do! 

 God gave wisdom and very great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore.  I Kings 4:29 

Texas State Fair

If you're a Texas kid you know the awesome joy of attending the Texas State Fair!  It is massive and there is nothing like it.  We've attended the fair with the Gungans for the past decade.  The kids are well versed in where to find the free samples, butter sculptures, Fletcher's corn dogs and all the greatness of the fair.  

J.J., the Kansas kiddo got to experience everything for the first hand! I think he enjoyed the animals and the cars the best.  Caleb was all about the funnel cake and fried goodness! 

Now I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I delivered them to you.
I Corinthians 11:2

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

LCU Fall Break Has Began!

Hooray! LCU's Fall Break has began, they are out of school for Thursday and Friday and return to classes on Monday morning.  Caleb's friends Richard and J.J. got in before church tonight.  Caleb had a later class and got in after we came home from services.  It was energizing to have a houseful of kids.  They have plans to take in the last weekend of the Texas State Fair and to get together with friends.  I'm just thrilled to see their smiling faces and blissfully content to do laundry and feed them to their heart's content.    Be prepared, I'm sure there are more posts ahead of the next four days! 

Hear, my son, your father's instruction,

    and forsake not your mother's teaching
Proverbs 1:8

Monday, October 12, 2015

Hot Stuff Care Package

When Caleb talked to the girls he told them they were sending all of his favorite things, Star Wars, Pizza, and Avengers.  So we had to think really hard about what other things he really likes that we could incorporate into snacks.  

The boy love his chips and salsa!  Abigail makes homemade salsa that when he was home, he would eat at the rate of a quart a week!  So we loaded a box with spicy Cheetos, Firehouse Pringles, spicy peanuts, Hot beef jerky, Fire gum, and even the Clint Eastwood movie FireFox! 

I'm not sure he will be thrilled with our packaging but I know he'll love the goodies and the sweet cards the girls made him! 

Send me your light and your faithful care,

    let them lead me
Psalm 43:3

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Texas Bible Bowl Preparations

Can you believe it is that time again for Texas Bible Bowl?!  The competition will take place the first weekend in April 2016, but these kids will prepare for six month, studying the books of Joshua, Judges and Ruth.  So far we have covered the first four chapters of Joshua, we have a long way to go!  This year the Texas Bible Bowl website publish my study guide for other congregations to use. Hopefully with this aid available, more congregations will get involved in Bible Bowl.

It was wonderful to be in class today, there is just something about being around a group of kids who are crazy excited about studying the Bible! It's hard to describe, but it is one of the highlights of my week! It was a little sad to not have the 'big kids' in class now that they have headed on to college; but it was equally encouraging knowing the wonderful ride ahead for these kids! 

to receive instruction in wise dealing,
    in righteousness, justice, and equity;
to give prudence to the simple,

    knowledge and discretion to the youth
Proverbs 1:3-4

Friday, October 9, 2015

Lone Star History Day

Today we joined a few homeschooling friends at Dallas Heritage Village for their Lone Star History Day. The village is a wonderful collection of 19th century pioneer and Victorian homes and commercial buildings in Texas. These buildings were moved from throughout North Central Texas to Dallas’ first city park. It's fascinating to see what life was like 100 years ago in Texas sitting right outside of the Dallas skyline.

For the Lone Star History Day, the Village had docents re-enacting life in 19th century.  We watched the local black smith forge nails. Ladies demonstrated their embroidery work, butter churning and soaping making skills.  Reading a book is a great way to learn, but I definitely prefer the hands on learning! 

Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the realm of the dead, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom.  Ecclesiastes 9:10

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Dr. Suess Visits Our Public Speakers Club

Abigail is enjoying her second year with PEACH's Public Speakers Club, it is very similar in format to Junior Toastmasters.  Her assignment was to present a vocal variety utilizing voice fluctuation, pitch, and volume.  She chose her topic as, My Parents Favorite Book. Watch to the end for her very witty conclusion.  

“Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature,
because I have rejected him. For the 
Lord sees not as man sees:
man looks on the outward appearance, 
but the Lord looks on the heart.”
 I Samuel 16:7

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Motley Crue's Final Tour

Jon's company has a suite at the American Airlines Center so occasionally we get to hang out with a few of his co-workers at various venues. Tonight was the Motley Crue's Final Tour with opening acts of The Cringe and Alice Cooper.  The Cringe (aka. Rachel Ray's husband) has a great sound.  Next up was Alice Cooper, he was most definitely a showman! I'm not a fan of his 'everyday is Halloween' mantra.  But for a 67 year old he put on an amazing performance.  

Motley Crue, Wow.  Just Wow!  The music, the pyrotechnics, the lights, all of it was just an amazing show!  Tommy Lee flew over the audience in a roller coaster style rigging.  They house was packed and loud and rockin'!  I did have to laugh at myself needing to put on my readers to read our tickets to find out our suite number!  

Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
    according to your steadfast love remember me,
    for the sake of your goodness, O Lord! Psalm 25:7

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

One Handed Piano Player

Tuesday nights are piano practice Abigail has been playing piano for four years and really enjoys it, most days.  I snapped a few pictures at tonight's lesson because this has been the reality for the past six weeks, one handed playing!  That silly brace has played havoc on her piano career!  

They appoint their brothers as the singers who should play loudly on musical instruments, on harps and lyres and cymbals, to raise sounds of joy.  I Chronicles 15:16

Monday, October 5, 2015

CHANT Softball Double Header

Time for another double header with the CHANT Chargers!  These were the last two games of the fall season.  The team has gone undefeated, that makes the games a lot more fun to watch.  Abigail has played on several great teams but that doesn't mean they were winning teams.  Playing with CHANT puts her with a great group of softball loving girls who also win ball games! 

The girl had a couple of at bats and managed to bring in a few runs and even scored!   The team has two other 'Abigails' on the team so they were going to call Abigail by her last name but decided Kirkwood was too long so they began calling her Kirk.  One of the seniors is a Star Trek fan and then began to call her 'Captain Kirk'.  At tonight's game they shortened it to just 'Captain.' They most definitely enjoy themselves! 

Then they will call upon me, but I will not answer;

    they will seek me diligently but will not find me.
Proverbs 1:28

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Lubbock Christian University Family Weekend Day 2

Today was another great day hanging out with Caleb.  I know the girls really enjoyed hearing his stories about his classes, professors, classmates, etc.  Abigail filled him in on all the goings on with her PEACH activities and Frankie told him all about her four year old class and Bible Bowl.  The weather in the slightly higher altitude was chillier than we expected.  When we left Dallas it was eighty-four degrees and when we woke up this morning it was fifty-four degrees! 

The university had several great family events today with soccer games, an art exhibition, music performances and we finished the day off with the musical, The Boy Friend.  Jon wasn't able to make the trip, he had me be sure to take the boy for a steak dinner! 

“‘Man shall not live by bread alone,

    but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

Matthew 4:4

Friday, October 2, 2015

Lubbock Christian University's Family Weekend

Hooray, it's the first weekend to head to Lubbock to see the boy! This is Lubbock Christian's Family Weekend.  Caleb is out of class by 11:00 am on Fridays, so the girls and I took off at 6:30 this morning so we could spend as much time together as possible! 

The girls spent part of this week baking cookies and brownies for Caleb and his friends.  When we arrived we were able to have lunch together and then we headed to a nearby theater to see a movie sequel to a book series Caleb and Abigail enjoy.  

We were able to spend some time at the hotel visiting and laughing and later joined his friends at the athletic center for Lubbock's girls volleyball game.  Lubbock won and I think Frankie and Abigail really enjoyed the game.  Caleb has acted as a host for the volleyball team through the ambassador program, so he was able to explain rules to his sisters as we went along.  

After the game we headed over to Caleb's dorm and shared the goodies the girls had baked with a few of the his dorm mates. It was fun to listen to the guys banter and tell stories on each other.  And my mom heart was thrilled to see how smooth the transition to college life was suiting Caleb! 

Rejoice, O young man, in your youth, and let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth. Walk in the ways of your heart and the sight of your eyes. But know that for all these things God will bring you into judgment.
Ecclesiastes 11:9

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Fort Worth Zoo Homeschool Day

Every year the Dallas and Fort Worth Zoos host a Homeschool Day.  Fort Worth holds their homeschool event in the fall and the Dallas Zoo will have their event in the Spring.  There are zoo keepers on hand giving animal demonstrations and special feedings allowing the youth to have an up close and personal look at the animals.  

Today was an especially cooler fall day and the animals were in a playful mode.  We really enjoyed hanging out with the Baileys and watching the animals.  One of the highlights was the elephants, who chose to play in the water while we were watching.  The momma was rolling around and splashing with the two one year old elephants. It was delightful to watch them play and enjoy the weather, oblivious to the crowd of people around! 

Let your father and mother be glad;
    let her who bore you rejoice.

Proverbs 23:25