Sunday, December 31, 2017

Ending 2017 with My Loves

The last Sunday of the year and one more opportunity for the boy to teach a room full of kids.  Today Caleb took the kids through 1 Samuel chapters 17 and 18 as God granted David success.  

We took off last week for Christmas but I didn't want to skip two class two weeks in a row. I was delighted that so many kids showed up for class despite the holidays! 

I've gotten spoiled having Caleb home to help teach class for me.  I'm going to miss that kid when he heads back to college! 

The Lord will keep you from all harm—
    he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going

    both now and forevermore.
Psalm 121:7-8

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Harry Connick, Jr. Concert

My Christmas gift from my sweet husband was tickets to tonight's Harry Connick, Jr. concert!  Pretty sweet, I know! 

Frankie, Caleb and Abigail were on their own for the evening while Jon and I slipped up to the Winstar in Oklahoma.  The concert venue is about 3,500 people and is very family friendly no smoking, no vaping, and no alcohol! 

Harry and his silky smooth voice did not disappoint!  One of the best concerts, bar none!  Thank, Jon! 

Now to get back to Texas for Bible Bowl in the morning before I turn into a pumpkin! 

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.
Colossians 3:14

Friday, December 29, 2017

Canning P.F. Chang Copycat Lettuce Wrap Filling

My favorite menu item at P.F. Chang’s is their amazing lettuce wraps.  We'e made a copy cat version of their recipe at home with the chicken, water chestnuts and delicious sauce!  Healthy and so delicious! The wraps can be a little messy so occasionally I prepare the meat mixture and serve over a bed of lettuce making an easier to eat Asian salad.

The only down side to cooking the Lettuce Wraps is they require a lot of dicing and chopping. If only there was a way to chop up  a large quantity and preserve it for future meals!  Oh wait, there is, pressure canning.

So I began researching the ingredients to make sure they were all USDA approved for canning.  Chicken whole or diced can safely be canned.  There is no approved method for canning ground chicken. It is probably just as safe to can ground chicken but no research was done on ground poultry because it just wasn’t a thing back when the research was done. So for my recipe I diced up six pounds of skinless, boneless chicken breast.

Lettuce Wrap Filling:
6 lb. chicken boneless skinless breast
1 lb. white button mushrooms (diced)
4 – 8 oz. cans of Water Chestnuts (diced)
3 bunches of green onions (diced)
4 Tablespoons oil (for cooking chicken)

6 cups water
1 ½ cups white granulated sugar
2 ¼ cups soy sauce
¾ cup Rice Vinegar
1 ½ t. Fish Sauce
3 t. Spicy Asian Mustard
4 T. Sriracha Hot Sauce
4 t. minced garlic
3 T. Hoisin Sauce

Begin by dicing raw chicken and cooking it in a skillet with oil.  While the chicken is cooking dice up the water chestnuts, green onions, and mushrooms. Because I was working with six pounds of chicken, I cooked it in small batches and then placed the cooked chicken in the 6-Quart Crock Pot on low to keep it warm until canning.

To make the sauce, whisk all ingredients together and heat. I prepared them in my Instant Pot heating on low.

To pressure can:  Prepare your Pressure Canner and heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use.

To each Ball Pint Jars layer the following: 1 cup cooked chicken, ½ cup diced mushrooms, ¼ cup diced green onions and ¼ cup chopped water chestnuts. Do not pack too tight, you want the air pockets to fill with the sauce.

Ladle the hot sauce into the jars, using a Bubble Remover to help the sauce slip into all the air pockets. Leave 1 inch headspace.  Wipe jar rims with vinegar. Apply band and adjust until fit is fingertip tight.  Process the filled jars in a pressure canner at 10 pounds pressure 1 hour and 15 minutes for pints and 1 hour and 30 minutes for quarts, adjusting for altitude.

To serve after the filling has been canned, open a jar and heat on the stove.  With a slotted spoon serve the chicken filling on a bed of lettuce.  The sauce is your dipping sauce or salad dressing if you are serving it as an Asian salad.  For a crunchy topping serve with Chow Mein Noodles!

I bet you can't guess what we're having for dinner!

Do not crave his delicacies,
    for that food is deceptive.

Proverbs 23:3

Thursday, December 28, 2017

One More Birthday

It seems like we've been celebrating my birthday for a few weeks but it's not everyday that a girl turns 50! Today was my favorite celebration, the small quiet celebration with my sweet family.  

Jon and the kids prepared my birthday breakfast in bed complete with bacon, eggs and fried toast! Yum! We all piled in our bed and opened gifts and cards and by all I mean all, even Padme' made up on the bed too.  

There was still a big birthday cake from Abigail's celebration yesterday so I was happy with a cupcake topped with candles! 

A perk of having holiday birthdays it that Caleb is home to join in the celebration! 50 years of life have been pretty fantastic, I'm looking forward to the next 50 or so! 

My son, do not forget my teaching,
    but keep my commands in your heart,
for they will prolong your life many years
    and bring you peace and prosperity.

Proverbs 3:1-2

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl!

The baby girl turned 17 today! It doesn't seem possible!  The celebration began with our tradition of breakfast in bed.  The birthday girl requested bacon and eggs on thin bagels served with chocolate milk of course! 

We goofed off around town taking advantage of birthday discounts at some of her favorite stores.  It was a good day celebrating one of my favorite people! 

Listen, daughter, and pay careful attention:
    Forget your people and your father’s house.
Let the king be enthralled by your beauty;
    honor him, for he is your lord.
Psalm 45:10-11

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

At the Movies

Growing up every holiday included a family visit to the movies.  I have lots of great memories of Star Wars, E.T., Indian Jones and so many more! In keeping with that tradition we headed to the theater, today's feature was the remake of Jumanji.  

The movie was a fun remake but a little too much profanity and off-color humor that added nothing to continuing the story.  

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:29

Monday, December 25, 2017

Christmas Morning

This Christmas I got everything I wanted which was my three babies safely home for Christmas! Sure the presents and goodies are great but all three babies home is the best!  To Frankie's delight Santa ate all his cookies and drank his Dr. Pepper, but that silly Santa still never rinses off his dishes! 

Padme' was undisturbed by all the commotion.  Santa remembered to bring chocolate covered cherries! And he stuffed the kids stockings with goodies.  

After a delicious ham dinner we played some board games.  One of our favorites is Say Anything a game where the group is asked a question and everyone writes down their answer on a dry erase card.  Frankie had us in stitches throughout the game.  One question was, "What would be the most fun thing to push off a building?"  Most answers were 'watermelon' or 'water balloons.' But Frankie's answer, 'Bad Guys!'  

Another question was 'What super power do you wish you had?' Again, common answers, 'invisibility' or 'super speed.'  But Frankie's answer, 'Stretchy Arms!'  She had us laughing hysterically most of the afternoon! We also played several rounds of Apples to Apples Bible Edition, we love that game too matching words like 'Wild' to 'Rabbis!' 

Seek good, not evil, that you may live. Then the Lord God Almighty will be with you, just as you say he is. Hate evil, love good; maintain justice in the courts. Amos 5:14

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas Eve

'Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house . . . . 

We began our morning in the best way possible, worshiping the Lord. My favorite part of having Caleb home are those moment as we sit together as a family worshiping.  

With no Bible Bowl this afternoon we spent the remainder of the day watching a few of Frankie's favorite holiday movies like Frosty, Rudolph and Santa Clause is Coming to Town.  

The kids helped me put the finishing touches on the Christmas preparations so that the big guy could visit tomorrow.  Frankie wrote her letter to Santa and left out chocolate chip cookies and a Dr. Pepper. Santa is lactose intolerant and prefers Dr. Pepper! 

They rejoice in your name all day long;
    they celebrate your righteousness.

Psalm 89:16

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree

Christmas is in full swing with a stop off at Mimi's home for a little holiday celebration.  What a great blessing to have so many to be with at the holidays. 

Caleb got to share with Mimi the stories of his travels abroad. Mimi and Pawpa visited Greece in their travels so they were able to share stories! 

He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly. Acts 10:2

Over the River and Through the Woods

Our next Christmas stop was to see Granny and Donnie along with Jon's brother and his sons.  Even though the kids are all mostly adults, I love seeing all the 'old cousins' together.  And I know Granny loves to have all her kids together! 

There was a little football on tap and Caleb shared with Granny his pictures from Europe. The kids played a little fetch with sport in the Oklahoma snow and there were more presents and several Christmas favorites like ham and queso! 

We make it our goal to please him,whether we are at home in the body or away from it.  2 Corinthians 5:9

Friday, December 22, 2017

Home for Christmas

"I'll be home for Christmas
If only in my dreams"

You've got to love a little Bing Crosby at Christmas time! The wonderful sounds of home for the holidays. 

Christmas brings together family and warm celebration.  First up in the celebrations was Christmas with my Mom and Mr. Bob. 

The girls enjoyed helping their Grandmother prepare Christmas dinner with all the fixin's.  There were lots of shiny packages with pretty bows! And even snow! 

The Lord’s curse is on the house of the wicked,
    but he blesses the home of the righteous. Proverbs 3:33

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Numbering Your Blessings

One of the blessing we were given in 2017 was the McAdams family.  Wes was added as the pulpit minister at church. He is a gifted speaker who is very discerning and knowledgeable when handling scripture. He has an amazing web site, Radically Christian that attempts to separate religious confusion and division to walk by faith in simple and pure devotion to Christ.  

Next is Hollee, she has become a sweet friend.  She too homeshools and is part of our Monday night ladies Bible Study. I appreciate her kindness, hospitality, her love for baseball and her desire to be a Godly parent. 

Abigail has had the joy of babysitting for their two boys this year.  She adores these guys and their love of sports, outdoors, baseball and competitive natures. Today after a nail-biting game of Rock 'em Sock 'em Robots, the boys took Abigail on a 'date' for her up-coming birthday. It included strawberry Jell-O, Cheez-its, and a a Dr. Pepper. 

Such a blessing! 

Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name;

    make known his deeds among the peoples!
Psalm 105:1

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Sippy Cups & Celebrations

The last few weeks have been filled with Christmas parties but today's celebration may just be my favorite!  The preschool had their Christmas celebration today. Many of the Moms and Dads from the community joined the kids for the celebration. 

There were crafts, singing, books, pizza and home made treats. Because of all the celebrating there were no naps today! Sugar filled preschoolers and no naps, now that's the life! 

All of the kids were dressed in darling Christmas outfits, they were definitely picture perfect! 

 In that same hour he rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. Luke 10:21

Monday, December 18, 2017

How To Gurus

Last night I was laying in bed reading when I noticed that the ceiling fan was creating a funny shadow.  When I looked up the ceiling fan/light was hanging by the wires and not the bracket.  So at eleven o'clock Jon and Caleb dismounted the the fixture. 

Today the guys headed to Home Depot to purchase a new fixture. It was sweet to see the guys working together. I can't think of much they haven't figured out together how to repair. From car repairs, laying wood flooring, installing a new tub, plumbing fixtures and most of the electrical fixtures in the house.  If they don't know how to tackle a project the two will do some research and measuring and in no time they have a plan! 

It is one of my favorite things about Jon and I love that he has passed his love for learning new things on to Caleb. 

As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him Psalm 103:13

Sunday, December 17, 2017

One Body with Many Parts

Sunday, the Lord's Day, is my favorite day of the week largely because that my favorite relationships are rooted in the value of sharing faith and belief in the Lord and His Good News. Today was special in that we were able to share this day with some of my favorite people. 

In Bible Bowl Caleb presented the lesson in 1 Samuel 17 of David and Goliath.  Matt, one of our former Bible Bowl kids stopped by the class to offer words of encouragement to the class.  

At services Ron Warpole, a McDermott missionary that Caleb has adored since the 3rd grade was able to be with us for services!  It was so special to see my young man kneel to pray with his mentor in his wheel chair.  They share such a special bond. Ron is large reason Caleb has chosen to be a Biblical Text major, so many good men at church that have nurtured that spirit within Caleb.  

And as if that wasn't enough excitement for one day, we were also blessed to have Blake home from Harding.  He and Caleb have shared a special friendship since kindergarten at church.  Then this afternoon Richard and Melissa came by for a few hours.  I love seeing the kids together, it's like they've never been apart.  I also love how because of their bond Melissa, Hannah the whole family has instantly joined our family. 

Richard and Melissa joined us for evening services then we headed out to On the Border for dinner and lots of laughter.  I marvel at God's wisdom that He understood we need family and are the body of Christ.  When believers, Christians, are together we are whole.  Otherwise we are parts but together you have that true feeling of wholeness. I'm so grateful for these parts of the body that make out family whole. 

Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.  Hebrews 10:24:25

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Hawaii Five-0 Surprise Birthday Party

I'm not sure where to even start with this post.  I'm a Christmas birthday baby, that means that most of my birthday have been spent traveling for the holidays.  Not many birthday parties because either we were traveling or friends were traveling. 

This year I turn fifty, that's kind of a big deal.  Jon and the kids planned a huge surprise for my birthday.  With the help of my sweet friend Ms. Stacy they pulled off a beautiful surprise.  In the past two weeks Abigail an Jon shopped for decorations, food, balloons, flowers and party paraphernalia. 

Caleb was responsible for keeping me distracted and busy while all the shopping and preparations were going on.  Abigail orchestrated Caleb and Frankie making chicken kabobs and garlic shrimp.  The girls also made pineapples out of Ferrero Rocher chocolates.  Ms. Stacy baked a delicious pineapple island flavored cake and pineapple cookies! 

On the day of the party Gracie helped Abigail decorate at Ms. Stacy's house.  Caleb picked up helium filled balloons.  Jon, Frankie and I ran around in the morning while I thought Abigail was babysitting for Ms. Stacy's younger girls.  We ran over to Ms. Stacy's house to pick up Abigail because Caleb had dropped her off but she needed a ride home.  But SURPRISE! There was a house full of people there to surprise me! Such a fun day, surrounded by so many sweet friends! 

Gracious words are a honeycomb,
    sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.
Proverbs 16:24

Friday, December 15, 2017

The Last Jedi

The boy is home safe, a new Star Wars movie is out and all is right in our little world.  The kids went last week and bought tickets to tonight's ten o'clock showing.  It is long past Frankie's nine o'clock bed time but for Caleb and Star Wars she will stay up! 

Now the big questions:  Who is Rey? Who is Snoke? Will this movie answer those questions?  And if it does answer them, can we trust the answers we've given?  No spoilers here!  The movie did not disappoint! Star Wars continues to wow another generation! 

Start children off on the way they should go,
    and even when they are old they will not turn from it.
Proverbs 22:6

Elf Movie Watch Party

Tonight was Ms. Katrina's 2nd Annual Elf Watching Party!  The girls get together in their PJ's and watch the Christmas favorite.  There are plenty of yummy snacks like spaghetti with optional maple syrup!   No angry elves at this party just lots of singing loud for all to hear and movie quotes! This is definitely a holiday highlight! 

Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for God has already approved what you do.  Ecclesiastes 9:7

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Momma's Girl

Abigail got to hang out at the preschool today with the three year old class.  Several of our Bible Bowl kids have parents who work in the church preschool.  Abigail enjoyed getting to see several of the kids at work with their moms today. At one point, Abigail sent me a pouting face because she didn't have her mom at work today! Silly girl! 

One of the things I've learned to love about our church preschool is that the majority of the kids attending are from the surrounding neighborhood and it is a great outreach to the community. 

“Do you hear what these children are saying?” they asked him. “Yes,” replied Jesus, “have you never read, “ ‘From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise’?” Matthew 21:16

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Heartfelt Friends

Each month our Heartfelt Ministry meets for a meal, fellowship and Bible study.  The ladies in the church are split up into smaller groups of ten to twelve ladies.  It is a ministry that puts women in the church at different walks of life together.  

One of the biggest benefits for our family is that it gives Frankie a group of friends.  Frankie looks forward to this evening so much every month.  I love these sweet ladies who open their homes and prepare our study each month. 

I enjoy spending time with these ladies who I wouldn't normally hang out with just because we are at different places in life with our children.  I especially enjoy the wisdom of the more seasoned moms who have walked through the life I'm currently navigating.  They've been a great resource especially with Caleb traveling abroad. 

God is within her, she will not fall;
    God will help her at break of day.
Psalm 46:5

Christmas Party Homeschool Style

We are probably ten plus years and counting for our church home schoolers annual Christmas party.  It's a wonderful excuse for great food and sweet friendships.  One of the kids favorite events at the party is the gift exchange.  The oldest kids go first and can choose a gift from the stack, but the younger kids can steal a gift from the pile or select a new gift from the pile. It's fun to see the younger kids steal from the big guys. It's lots of fun for all. 

One of my favorite things is the time hanging out with the other moms and just enjoying being with kindred minded ladies all trying to raise Godly children. There is such a renewing of spirit just being together. We've had lots of sweet home schooling families at McDermott over the years and it's a joy to see them as young adults.  I look forward to see what the Lord has ahead for this group. 

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works Hebrews 10:24

Monday, December 11, 2017

Of Sound Speech

We are in full swing of holiday celebrations!  Tonight the Jr. Toastmasters Club had their Christmas Party.  Tonight they enjoyed some down time with Christmas themed table topics and improv games. The group has had a great first half of the year and are looking forward  to competing in the 2018 Plano Rotary Speech Contest.  So much talent and heart in this group! 

Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. Colossians 4:6

What an Ice Day

Each month the PEACH teens get together. Generally fifteen to twenty-five teens hang out for no educational purpose whatsoever, with the sole purpose of enjoying hanging out with other high school home schoolers. 

Abigail and her friend Kayla take turns planning each moth's events. For December Abigail organized a teen ice skating event at the Dr. Pepper StarCenter where the Dallas Stars Ice Hockey Team practices. 

They had a great turn out of teens, Abigail and Frankie even joined in on the fun!  One of the Dallas Stars trainers came out and gave the kids pointers on pivoting and turning.  

Frankie loves skating and Caleb is pretty good at it even after suffering broken ribs at one skating event! 

Such a great group of teens enjoying lots of fun with no drama! 

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 

making the most of every opportunity Ephesians 5:15-16

Sunday, December 10, 2017

A Time to Celebrate

What an incredibly fun day!  First off it's the Lord's Day, the very best day of the week when we celebrate when Jesus Christ rose from the dead. 

Next up was Bible class where we are studying the book of Psalms and it's wonderful collection of poems, hymns, and prayers. That was followed by our Bible Bowl class.  My favorite Biblical Text & Preaching Major taught today lesson over chapters 15 & 16 of 1 Samuel.  

How could the day possibly get any better, you ask.  When it came snack time, I found out they had an unexpected surprise planned!  My Bible Bowl moms surprised me with birthday cake, confetti, noisemakers and a beautiful cake!  

We take a break from Bible Bowl at the end of the year so the the kids held an early surprise for me.  I was blown away, I had no idea what they were up too!  Such a fun, heart warming day, filled with lots of sweet hugs and lovely hand made cards! 

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.  John 20:1

Friday, December 8, 2017

Sitting with Santa

It's that time of the year when all good brothers and sisters head to the mall to visit the Big Guy! Sissy couldn't wait any longer to talk to Santa.  

Santa asked her what she wanted for Christmas and she told him nothing, all she wanted was for Caleb to come home from Spain and now that he was home she was happy! 

After their pictures Caleb and Santa discussed their travels around the world! 

You who are young, be happy while you are young, and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth. Follow the ways of your heart and whatever your eyes see, but know that for all these things God will bring you into judgment.  Ecclesiastes 11:9

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Telling Tall Tales

Caleb is beginning to get caught back up on his rest so we ventured out today.  Abigail had classes this morning so we headed out for Caleb to get a shave and a haircut. 

After wards we ventured over to the mall, we stopped to check out the new Lego Millennium Falcon and then the Lego Architecture series caught Caleb's eye.  The series has The Arc de Triomphe; London with the National Gallery, Nelson’s Column, London Eye, Big Ben (the Elizabeth Tower) and Tower Bridge; Buckingham Palace; and The Eiffel Tower. All are place Caleb visited while studying abroad! 

Next we headed to Studio Movie Grill so that Caleb could get caught up on some of the movie releases while he was oversees.  It was a good day to catch up, listen to stories and hang out with my favorite world traveler. 

let the wise listen and add to their learning,
    and let the discerning get guidance
Proverbs 1:5

Monday, December 4, 2017

Preschool Playtime

With Caleb home from Spain but still pretty jet lagged, I went on it to work at the preschool.  Today I helped out in the three year classroom with Ms. Ashley.

The kids are beginning their December unit so our crafts centered around gingerbread men and snowmen. The kids also began preparing for the Christmas Program in two weeks.  

One of the kids favorite part of class is story time.  I'm not sure how many Rudolph, Frosty and Llama, Llama Holiday Drama books I read today! 

One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.  He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it. Romans 14:5-6

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Timothy & Tabitha Class

Back in Oklahoma, Jon and I began a Timothy and Tabitha class for the middle and high school youth at the Owasso Church of Christ.  Jon worked with the young men and I taught the young ladies how to serve and to lead as these two individuals did in scripture. 

At the McDermott congregation they have a Timothy and Tabitha program for the 3rd through 5th graders.  The young me learn how to lead congregational prayers, read scripture, lead singing and deliver the Lord's message. 

The young ladies learn to teach Bible class and serve others just like the Biblical example of Tabitha given in scripture. 

After three moths of class time and preparation, tonight the young men led service just as we see Timothy, Paul & Peter leading in the New Testament.   The young men, many of them my Bible Bowl guys, did a fantastic job. 

I have so many great memories of doing the Tabitha program with Frankie and her peers at Owasso.  My favorite memories include teaching the girls to teach Bible class, decorate bulletin boards, making flip charts, and how to navigate the equipment in the teachers supply room. We also worked on how to minister to those who were ill, grieving or elderly.  

I also loved watch Caleb go through the Timothy class at McDermott and leading in worship. Such a blessing to see witness and know that these young people will soon be serving in the Lord's work. 

A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. 1 Timothy 2:11-12

Iron Sharpens Iron

Today is an exciting day, Bible Bowl WITH Caleb! I guess a little back story is in order.  The first year Jon and I experienced National Bible Bowl was at McDermott Road with Caleb, Richard, Blake and Sam.  The boys were in 4th & 5th grades and Ms. Sally had told us about National Bible Bowl at Abilene Christian University.  It was the same material as Leadership Training for Christ's Bible Bowl on steroids!  

National Bible Bowl is 250 questions! The four boys competed that year over the book of 1 Samuel.  They would go on to compete in Nationals at ACU, Oklahoma Christian University, The Soul Winning Workshop and now at Texas Bible Bowl

Many of the kids we've added over the years are kids that have a special bond and closeness to Caleb and Abigail.  Because of the sweet friendships the kids have asked each week how Caleb is doing in Spain.  Today Caleb is home and here to hang out with the class.  

It was a great day having all 'my kids' together.  I love that the kids Richard and Caleb once encouraged are now serving to encourage younger kids!  That is how that is supposed to work.  It's neat to think that one day these kids will be serving in the Lord's body at other congregations when they grow up. How sweet to think of the friendship they've formed in their youth! 

As iron sharpens iron,
    so one person sharpens another.
Proverbs 27:17

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Stating the Obvious

Further proof that all is right with the world now that Caleb is home . . .

Sissy has been coloring in a map of the United States based on licence plates for two years. Her map hangs prominently on the refrigerator. Today she gleefully squealed when she found the last state, Vermont! She quickly hugged Caleb and said he was her good luck charm!

“Say of your brothers, ‘My people,’ and of your sisters, ‘My loved one.’
Hosea 2:1

Friday, December 1, 2017

He's Home!!

On August 19th Caleb left for his Junior year at Lubbock Christian University.  Later that week he and the Honor College students headed to Avila, Spain for a semester abroad. In the last four months Caleb’s been to Madrid, Paris, Naples, Granada, Pompeii, Rome, San Sebastian, Portugal, Greece, Athens, Mount Olympus and other places I’m sure I’ve forgotten. 

We've Skyped and texted but it's not the same as hearing his voice and seeing him in person.  The girls made signs to welcome him home.  Frankie's sign had the Whataburger W, only it read Whatabrother!  Abigail was a little more ornery and her sign read, "Congratulations on Making Parole, Caleb!"

Padme' was so happy to see her boy! She stuck close to Caleb all night! For dinner Caleb requested steaks, baked potatoes and stuffed jalapenos.  I think he missed the Texas staples! The evening was filled with lots of laughter and great stories.  He was pretty jet lagged but it was amazing to hear his laughter.  God is good! 

Praise the Lord.
How good it is to sing praises to our God,
    how pleasant and fitting to praise him!
Psalm 147:1

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Class Review Games

Today was one of our Texas Bible Bowl classes favorite days, review time!  With is being Thanksgiving weekend I didn't want to introduce new material, so we spent the class period reviewing everything we've covered  from 1 Samuel chapters 1-13.

Some of the classes favorite games to play to review are Tic Tac Toe, Jeopardy and Ha! Part of the material I create when I write the Student Study Guide for Texas Bible Bowl are review cards.  These cards are the questions contained in the Study Guide formatted with single question and answer with chapter and verse printed on 3"x 5" cards.

Using an Oxford Card File and 1-31 Index Card Dividers, I file my 3" x 5" review question cards by chapter number, then when I'm ready to play a review game I pull out the cards for the chapter we are reviewing! The game links above will take you to step by step instructions if you would like to create your own review games, perfect for reviewing any Bible lesson! 

Here is a link to my 1 Samuel lessons for Texas Bible Bowl, the lessons are based on the ESV.  

Whoever fears the Lord has a secure fortress,
    and for their children it will be a refuge.

Proverbs 14:25

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Continued Thankfulness

Today we enjoyed a Thanksgiving dinner with Granny and Donnie! We met up in Atoka for a little Mexican food, a little antiquing and a dip cone.  Sport kept Granny and Donnie company on the drive from Tulsa. 

Granny and Donnie had a houseful over Thanksgiving so with a day of rest they felt up to a three hour drive to Atoka.  We are so thankful that Donnie has completed his chemo treatments and the doctors did an amazing job on his reconstructive surgery. 

We also took the time to celebrate Granny's birthday a little early.  She looks great, you wouldn't guess she turns 79 next week!  She still works full time and has no plans to retire.  The visit was too short but it was wonderful to spend time together. 

I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.
Psalm 9:1

Friday, November 24, 2017

Mani, Pedi and a Side of Guacamole

This morning we all enjoyed a little breakfast together before we split up for the day.  Jon took the girls to Oklahoma to have lunch with our sweet Hannah.  I think there is a limit to how long they can go without hanging out together. 

Mom and I spent the day doing girly things!  You know, mani and pedis!  Then there was time for more shopping, which of course led to more eating!  But with all the walking we did while shopping with our perfectly coiffed toes, I'm sure it all evened out the calories! Right?! 

It was a great mother /daughter day for us and the girls had a good visit!  Again, thankful for much . . . family for the holidays, Godly friendships, and making memories! 

“Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever.” 2 Chronicles 20:21