Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Ever hear of Bodylastics? We've been trying to stick to a tight budget, so that means giving up our LA Fitness memberships. We looked at various at-home workout stuff online, and we came across Bodylastics. It's a combination of circuit training with these elastic bands, each with different tension. We decided to give it a try . . . and I think we're gonna like it. It's hard! After all, Terrell Owens uses this for his work out -- not the best claim to fame, but there is no doubt that he is in good shape. I guess time will tell . . .

So, if you happen to stop by and feel like a good work out, we'll let you join us :).

A Mac

Brian got a present from his dad!!! A Mac -- the first to join the fam. We've been having fun getting acquainted with it.

Brian absolutely loves Photobooth. Here are a few weird ones . . . feel free to laugh really hard at these . . .

Where did your eyes go?

Pointy chin, seriously

My warewolf
Nice hair!
Who is that little girl doing dishes?

Freaky pucker

Did you say big hair?


Us as little mouses . . . we should be singing the chipmunk songs

Lest you forget what we really look like

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

My Big Fat Greek Summer

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

This is how I have spent much of my summer this far memorizing vocab, learning grammar and spending many late night/ early morning hours studying and doing workbook exercises. It has been very intense but rewarding. Every other day (each day I have class that is) I wake up with this fear that I don't know enough or haven't studied enough. Thus far however I have made it through each class and am doing very well. Aside from NT Greek I have learned a lot about learning and teaching by taking this class. I am finding out what is a good textbook and what is not, what does promote learning and what does not. I really love the class and it seems to fly by, it is a 3 hour and 15 minute class and seems shorter than my hour and 15 minute classes I have during the fall and spring.

Aside from Greek, I have been working with some students from Christ Academy this summer. Mary wrote a post about the soccer day I did with them about 3 weeks ago. This has been an incredibly fun time. We meet most Tuesday mornings and learn skills from several different people in the church. So far this summer we have learned about catering, formal dinner etiquette, business lunch etiquette, interview skills, we have toured a company owned by a man in our church, learned to bind books, and I have taught several of them how to swim. Yesterday I was asked to teach them some basic carpentry skills and have each kid build a bird house. Should be easy enough.... right? I did actually go well but was much more involved than I had thought. I built one myself yesterday morning before they arrived and it took me just over a half hour. Once they arrived it took us 3 hours for 6 boys to build a birdhouse. Part of this was because we didn't have enough tools for everyone and had to share, part was because I was asked not to use power tools if possible. Now personally I don't think that suing a hand saw is a meaningful skill anymore..I don't even own one, but that was what was asked so that is what we did. In the end it all worked out and each boy took a bird house home...and left with all the finger they came with so that was good. Afterward we went swimming, a great end to a day spent working outside.

Out of my working with these young men I have also been presented with an opportunity to preach at a small chapel in Nuangola PA on Sunday August 31. This will be a first for me, I have preached before at a small service we have at a retirement community once a month but never in an actual worship service. I am very excited for this and a bit intimidated as well. I was told that they used to be Presbyterian but their pastor's wife has been sick and they have had guest speakers each week all summer long and are now more independent. Used to be Presbyterian? Last time I inquired about a church I was told "used to be Presbyterian" I was told it was because they decided they didn't believe in predestination anymore. How you can exist as a church for any period of time and then just decide you don't believe in a foundational doctrine anymore is beyond my understanding. So I had to ask.... " Are they all going to be offended if I mention the name John Calvin, or Westminster?" The reply was that they don't get offended which made me feel a lot better. What makes me intimidated isn't even the preaching, I am pretty confident about that, I have no problem speaking in front of groups... It is the singing, and singing hymns, and being near the mic while singing hymns. I feel like I used to be able to sing but just can't anymore, and I feel like I sing hymns worse than anything. Thankfully I get to pick the hymns for that week so that is at least a little safer.

It was rather interesting though, I had just been thinking that I really hadn't been involved in speaking engagements as much as I would like and that I would like to do that more. One week later I have an opportunity not just to speak but to preach. I really enjoy doing this and it is a great way to learn. Some of my best studying and growth comes when I realize " Uh oh, I got to get up in front of people and teach them something, I better get to studying"

The other thing I am doing this summer is Wednesday night you ministry. I start each night doing games with the young kids ages 4- 5th grade. This is actually quite a challenge to make game appropriate for a 4 year old and yet fun for a 5th grader. Tonight is water games night. After the young kids I have game with the Jr. High youth group. This is always fun and I get to play in these games as well. Tonight will be a church scavenger hunt. I really enjoy working with the youth and have a very unique opportunity to impact the lives of the children at our church. If God allows me to continue serving in these ministries I will have been able to work with some kids from age 4 until they are married. I get them when they are four years old, continue with them in Jr. High with games and various youth activities, when they reach Sr. High I become their Sunday school teacher and after they graduate I become their shepherding deacon as they move into the college and career group. I love that God allows me to work with literally every young person in our church.

Well back to the Greek

The Grace of the Lord Jesus be with you

Monday, July 14, 2008


For you faithful readers, you might remember my post in December about my friend Jessica. Jess had been struggling with a rare form of cancer for years, so attending her wedding was a precious thing. I had a very strong feeling that it would be the last time I would get to see her. It was really special and difficult. By God's providence, Jess went home to our Savior last Thursday. God had sustained her longer than many doctors thought, and God clearly used Jess' perseverance and hope in many people's lives. Mine has been touched. We will miss you, and can't wait for the grand reunion in heaven!
Here are some pictures . . . going down memory lane . . . from college.

Many a Spring Break together . . . ah, car rides . . .

Could there be a Spring Break without a spontaneous dance party?

This is a classic . . .

Jess, you wanna share the whip cream with the rest of us :)?

At Coolidge Park . . . some warm weekend night

Jess was the most amazing leader of our Covenant Stomp team

At Jess and Aaron's wedding in December . . . giving her princess wave

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Reunion Time

This past weekend, I had my 10-Year Reunion from high school. It was great to see my two high school BFFs (above), who I still keep in touch with . . . and many other old friends. Some people hate reunions, but I honestly was so excited for it! I loved high school. I had transferred to Delco Christian School in 9th grade, and it was joy for my weary soul. I was going through a hard time then. The spiritual growth, the lasting friendships, the excellent teaching, the memorable retreats, . . . it really helped shape me. And, it was special to be able to share a taste of that with Brian. (He was a tooper . . . thankfully, he had my BFFs' husbands to hang with).

Us and our hubbies. Doesn't Tamara (middle) look amazing for just having her 4th kiddo?
Most of us
A goof-off pic

Ocean City, NJ

The end of last week, Brian and I joined up with my family "down the shore." It was so wonderful to meet our new little foster nephew and relax on the beach with family. My mom rented a house right on the boardwalk. We just enjoyed watching all the runners and bikers and vacationers walking the boards. And, we were able to watch the fireworks from the front deck -- looking out at the ocean.

My brother's cute fam
Brian and Jacob (new little nephew) We fought for this picture . . . with a few tears
Ah, the kids are happy now!
Walking the boardwalk -- loving it On the carousel together
A view from the top of the ferris wheel Another view
Notice, Robin is really getting into the ride :)
Relaxing on the deck
Brian hanging with the kids
Jacob giving a shout out to Aunt Mar
No more pics, or you get a piece of this! I got a tough left hook!
Oh, you think I'm not serious?!!
He decided I was okay
Multitasking with the kiddos
Ansley and Me
Product of a rainy afternoon

We had a super time!

"Folks, it's outta here!"

Getting his stance, and wails it outta the park!
Rounding third, headed home
High-fives and cheers
One happy man
A view from the bench
Happy fans!

And, might I add . . . he had 2 homeruns this game! It was a good night!