Friday, April 24, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Apparently there's some sort of heat wave in Cleveland today. Yahoo! Bout time!
2. As I look out my window I see a magnificently sunny day.
3. 2009 has been pretty darn good so far. The new Contemporary Praise Service at church has been uplifting, powerful and consistently growing! My kids are healthy and growing and smart... must be that fabulous Queensbridge Academy they've been attending. I am very happily married and live a blessed and comfortable life!
4. I told Emily no more diapers and that was it. Now she tells us when she has to go and off to the potty we run. Never an accident, never a change of clothes involved, never waits too long to tell us she needs to go, never could I be farther from the TRUTH. A girl can dream, right? However, it is a work in progress that is showing MUCH improvement over the last couple days.
5. For too long I've been procrastinating starting my early morning walks again.
6. I am not obsessed with Facebook or reading blogs; I am not!
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to Rachel's ballet class and then going to my inlaws for supper (my MIL makes the absolute BEST homemade sauce EVER), tomorrow my plans include Benjamin's soccer game and Rachel's first soccer game immediately afterwards, then running home for a quick lunch, quick change of clothes and a quick ballet bun, Rachel's ballet class and then back to the soccer fields for Rachel's second soccer game and Sunday, I want to teach Sunday School, attend worship then attend the Pizza/Talent Show/Birthday Party right after church! Oh yeah, I have a boat-load of papers to catch up on grading too. Oh, yeah... and the laundry I fell waaaaaaay behind on this week. Ugh, I better stop now.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Monday, April 20, 2009

In Emily world

Cooby Cooby Coop = Scooby Doo

Saturday, April 18, 2009


Yesterday we traveled to "Dreamsville" more commonly known as Dennison, Ohio to see the Dennison Railroad Depot Museum. This small village lies halfway between Columbus and Pittsburgh, exactly 100 miles in either direction because a steam engine could only travel 100 miles before needing to take on water.
During war times a million and a half G.I.s were served free coffee and food by volunteers at the Salvation Army Service Men's Canteen.
This isn't your typical museum. Part of the museum is housed in five railroad coaches and the kids are allowed to touch, play and climb on everything.

Purchase a ticket

Sleep on a Pullman Bunk

Fix a gourmet meal

It's hard work!
Many presidents rode on the trains and we got to try on their hats...

...and make presidential speeches with a working microphone while watching a real TV monitor. I think campaign promises were made such as, "Cupcakes everyday for everyone!"

We even learned about hobos.

They used "hobo code" to communicate with each other on trees.
Look at these down-on-your-luck hobos I spotted, about to eat their hobo-lunches on this beautifully sunny, 64 degree day.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Join me in cleaning this filthy house! I mean really. I can't be expected to get this house clean with all the blog surfing and face booking that needs to be done.

2. Put a little love in your day!

3. Happiness is a great day with your family in the warm sunshine.

4. Sometimes we are lost and confused and that's when we need to open our Bibles, spend time in prayer and listen for the voice of God to direct us.

5. I'm waiting for this movie to be over so we can all go to bed.

6. Cheesecake is hard to resist.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to a movie with the kids, tomorrow my plans include Benjamin and Rachel's soccer games and laundry, lots of it and Sunday, I want to go to church and get ready for the week ahead!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Ahoy there, Matey!

Some things in life are becoming easier. For example, I used to D-R-E-A-D trips to the store with all 4 kids tagging along. Let's just say we have provided entertainment for many a fellow shopper over the last few years. Today, as I was strolling through Marc's with all 4 kiddos, I thought to myself how peaceful this outing was. Everyone was behaving and cooperating and there was minimal whining and I don't believe any tears were shed! As we were checking out, Emily started pointing and saying, "Parrot! Parrot! Parrot!" Now, they used to have birds at Marc's but that was ages ago. I looked around for a picture or stuffed animal of some sort, but what I saw instead was a man in the next aisle (oh, about 4 feet away from us) with an eye patch. She kept getting louder and louder with more intensity as her pointing finger followed the man as he walked right passed us to leave the store. And then I realized she was not saying, "Parrot," but "Pirate"!!!!!! I don't know if she's been watching the news when I'm not looking or what but my baby girl was seriously concerned about this pirate being so close. Even after "the pirate" had left the store she kept saying, "Mommy, pirate! Mommy, pirate!" Rachel reassured her that "There's no such thing as pirates!" Obviously, Rachel hasn't been watching the news!

Wordless Wednesday

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Oh that wasckly wabbit!

Well, you'll never believe what that Easter Bunny pulled this year at the Carpenter house!

Exhibit A

Sarah was the first to spot a hidden basket on top of the entertainment center. Coincidentally, it was hers!

Exhibit B

Rachel found her basket in the foyer closet.

Exhibit C

Rachel found another basket on top of the tv in our bedroom. This one belonged to Emily.

Exhibit D

After about 30 minutes of searching high and searching low Rachel found the last basket inside the dryer. Not a minute too soon... Benjamin was becoming a little worried, thinking that maybe the bunny thought he was too old for a basket of goodies.

All baskets found. All is good.

But wait.... usually there are lots of hidden eggs to be found. Benjamin glanced outside to check on the bird feeder and what to his wondering eyes should appear? No, not reindeer but a yard full of eggs. That bunny hid the eggs OUTSIDE this year.

Yes, I sent them outside in their PJs in the freeeeeezing 30 degree morning to collect their eggs.

Fun times, fun times.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Anonymous sure has written a lot of poems.

2. Rachel is a cutie pie.

3. Let me embrace thee, sour adversity, um, yeah, let's move on to #4.

4. Warmer weather and sunshine are what I look forward to most about Spring.

5. Who needs therapy when you've got Scrapshare.

6. M&Ms and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups MUST go into the Easter Basket!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to Good Friday church and Friendly's afterwards, tomorrow my plans include the Easter Egg Hunt, grocery shopping, Easter preparations and Sunday, I want to go to church and praise the King! The enemy's been defeated and death couldn't hold you down! We're going to lift our voice in victory, We're gonna make your praises loud. Shout unto God with a voice of triumph, Shout unto God with a voice of praise, Shout unto God with a voice of triumph. We lift your name up! We lift your name up! Sorry....went off on a little Michael W. Smith tangent there (#6 on the new CD).

Another great field trip

Alpacas are one of God's beautiful creatures. Their gentle nature, tranquil temperament, luxurious fiber and calming humming sounds make you want to bring a few home. Today we visited Full Tilt Alpaca Farm. We were able to pet, feed, walk, hug and even kiss them on the lips if we so desired. They were so loving with the owner but a little on the shy side with us. That is until we were holding carrots in our hands. Then we were quickly surrounded with sweetness.

Rachel wasn't too sure about getting up close and personal but she did a great job walking her friend on the lead.

Benjamin was great with them too.

And I think I found the solution for my freezing feet... alpaca socks! But at $20 a pair I decided I better wait and think about it. They were reversable so it would be like getting two pairs, right? What feet wouldn't be toasty warm and happy in socks like that? It might be just what I need to survive another winter in Cleveland!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Double Digits!

That's my boy!

Ten years ago today I was at a laundromat washing the comforter from our bed because it was too big to fit in our washing machine. While it was washing I popped over to Taco Bell for a bean burrito with sour cream and no onions. A lady at church had told me that Mexican food always put her into labor so I wondered if Taco Bell was Mexican enough to put me in labor. Apparently the answer to that question is yes. I woke up around 4:00 am pretty sure "it was time." I let Steve sleep until 6:00 and when I woke him up and told him he said something along the lines of, "You mean I don't have to go to work today?!"

The last decade has been amazing. God has blessed us tremendously with a smart, sweet, loving boy. He has a special love for animals and nature and he will read just about anything he can get his hands on. He plays the piano beautifully and has an arsenal of knock knock jokes ready to share. He can build and create masterpieces with Legos and K'nex. He has a special gift of being able to draw and is currently putting together a book of comics. There is nothing he can't do when he sets his mind to it.

I can only imagine how many hermit crabs and other creatures will be walking around when he gets a house of his own. (Although I do believe I have him on video promising to never leave home...I'll have to look for that.) Oh, and his backyard will probably be quite amazing if he puts into action all the plans he currently has for our backyard.

My prayer for Benjamin is that he will clearly see the plan God has for his life and courageously follow that plan. I pray that he will always be surrounded by people who truly care for him and who also love and serve Jesus. I pray that God will bless him with a wife and children and they will grow together in their love for each other and the Lord. I pray that Steve and I will continue to raise him in the way God wants us to and that we will provide him with a good, solid foundation. I also want his life to continue to be filled with happiness and laughter.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

I love you, Benjamin Charles!!!!!!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Crab update

When your soon-to-be 10 year old, hermit crab expert of a son pleads with you to put the molting crab in an isolation tank, LISTEN to him.

It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of our dear hermit crab, Ariel, who later became Acrobat after discovering “she” was a “he”. Thorin, the “quiet” crab decided to attack while she was most vulnerable. He flipped the shell over and tore her legs off.

I really do feel bad about the whole situation. Benjamin took such good care of them and managed to keep them alive for a whole year. He had been patiently waiting for the molting process to begin and it finally did. Unfortunately, I didn’t listen. I didn’t read the web page that explained the importance of the iso tank. Benjamin repeatedly asked me to read the page on molting but I didn’t make time for it. After it was too late I did read it and very clearly in large, bold letters it said, “A NOTE ABOUT CANNIBALISM:” It went on to explain how hermit crabs find the smell of freshly-shed exoskeleton irresistible.

Nope, I won’t be getting mother of the year this year.

However….. in an attempt to make it up to Benjamin we went out and purchased three, yes three, more hermit crabs.

Allow me to introduce you to Hermie, Fluffy, Crabby and Thorin.

Thorin is now residing inside Ariel's old shell. Yes, that's right, he killed her and then immediately took over her shell. Watch out, new crabs!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Angel or not, I will always love Emily. She keeps us on our toes and makes our lives and family complete! Just love her to pieces!!!!

2. I'll cut your hair any way you want me to.

3. As my mother used to say, you're full of baloney. Truthfully, though, I don't think she ever said that and I doubt that's how it's spelled.

4. I drink a tall glass of ice water after I'm done working out or doing something strenuous. And then I head for the Cookies and Cream ice cream cause I deserve it, right?

5. Even in the most crowded of rooms I can find my way to the bathroom.

6. Today is a day fraught with peril. We had a hermit crab fatality...more on that later.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to Rachel's ballet, my inlaws returning home from their 3 month stay in CA, practicing my memorized scripture for Sunday and a long, hot bath, tomorrow my plans include Benjamin's soccer game, Rachel's ballet, Henry's 1st birthday party, some shopping and practicing my memorized scripture for Sunday and Sunday, I want to go to church and Benjamin's 10th birthday party at Lazer Xtreme!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

United Tour

This was not a concert.... it was an incredible night of praise and worship led by two very talented and holy men.

The Allen Theater was filled with the Holy Spirit as Steven shared of his broken heart and the hope we have in Jesus Christ. This life is hard, but God is Good. He's got us and will never let go. When it becomes unbearable, He carries us. This servant of Christ is still hurting deeply from the tragic loss of his precious daughter Maria Sue. And he will for a long time. But God will be there, holding him, carrying him, loving him. Beauty will come from the ashes because God is good, all the time and All the time, God is good!

The Holy Spirit moved as Michael led us in an incredible worship experience. Jim Houser, SCC's manager, said on his blog, "I can't imagine King David led worship any better than Michael W Smith does. I'm looking forward to that co-lead..." Yeah, me too. MWS was moved to do, Here I Am to Worship, which wasn't on the set list and for me, it was one of the high-points of the night. He started in the middle of the song..."And I'll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross"....and sang it over and over. I love those moments in worship when you repeat the best part of the song and you can just lose yourself in the moment. The Holy Spirit moves through you and speaks to the deepest part of your soul. There were many other moments like this through out the night. These aren't moments that you can plan. These are God moments where the Holy Spirit leads and you follow. I crave moments like this. And you know what? I think they are all around us, happening more often than we realize. We just need to open our eyes and watch for them. God is always at work in our heart and our lives.

Here's a fun little tidbit: Just as we were pulling into the parking garage before the concert, who did we see hanging out, skateboarding in the street behind the Allen Theater? One Caleb Chapman. How cool is that? Lesson of the day - always have your camera at the ready! Although, he might not have liked that so much. He's trying to get some fresh air and enjoy a few moments of peace before the concert and here comes the crazy fan snapping pictures.

Now I just need to figure out how to get to Baltimore for tonight's concert... I still need to hear You Are Holy and Forever.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009