Saturday, May 30, 2009

Before and after

So Lael has been growing out her hair so she can donate it to Locks for Love (hopefully by the end of the summer). She was hoping to grow out her bangs as well, but they got to the point of driving her crazy, so we decided to do something about it!

Here we have the before . . .
. . . and the after -- isn't she beautiful!

What has God been speaking to you?

Here are a few excerpts from my journal of late . . . with some of the things that God has been speaking:

When we understand that we are in partnership with God
in all of His power, we will live differently --
we will walk in boldness, strength and authority.

Hell's foundations quiver
At the sound of praise!
(from the hymn "Onward Christian Soldiers")

God often uses pain to get us to change . . . .
We change our behavior when the pain of staying the same
becomes greater than the pain of changing.
(from The Emotionally Healthy Church)

God always prepares His people for the fresh move that He is bringing.

If you don't let go of your past, it will hinder your future.
You can't carry your yesterday into your tomorrow.

Transformation leads to reformation, which leads to a spiritual revolution
that spreads far beyond us!

So what is God speaking right now? Get ready . . . something is coming . . . God is going to do a new thing! I'm not sure what that new thing is, but I want to be ready for it when it comes!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Build-a-Bear fun!

One of Jaden's birthday gifts was a gift card to Build-a-Bear Workshop . . . he's never been before! So today was the day!

After picking out their new friends -- a dog for Lael and a bear for Jaden -- the first stop was to add the stuffing (Lael went first to show Jaden the ropes)

Next, they had to add a satin heart . . . but first, the store employee asked the kids to touch the heart to their foreheads (so their friends would be smart), to their noses (so they'd be cute), to their cheeks (so they'd be happy) . . . Jaden just thought she was silly!

After that, their new friends were closed up and ready for . . .

. . . an air bath!Next on the agenda . . . picking out an outfit -- talk about a hard job (particularly for Jaden)! There were just too many choices! Finally we were ready for the last step: filling out birth certificates for the new members of our family.

New friends in hand, we headed home!
Please allow me to introduce our two new friends . . . Dimples (the bear) and Sallie (the dog)!
Sallie got her name because the first time Lael ever went to Build-a-Bear Workshop, she made a dalmation dog named Dallie and she wanted her two dogs to have rhyming names.And where did Jaden get the name "Dimples"? Well, besides the fact that Jaden has the best dimples I've ever seen, that was the name given to this particular bear at Build-a-Bear Workshop, and Jaden liked it!

So, there you have it -- Jaden's final birthday celebration for this year (at least, I think we're done now)! Happy, happy birthday to you, Jaden!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Our trip to Inner Harbor

For Jaden's birthday (and an end-of-the-year field trip), we spent the day in Baltimore, MD. Our main purpose for going was to visit the National Aquarium in Baltimore. After a quick stop at the Visitor's Center, we were off to the aquarium.
We had such a great time enjoying God's awesome creativity! Here are just a few of the amazing creatures we saw:
This little guy is a "digger fish" that actually digs holes in the ocean floor with its tail -- the kids called it the "dancing fish" as it wiggled back and forth!
A couple of highlights of our aquarium visit were #1 - the rainforest room (since we've been learning all about tropical rainforests in our homeschool this month:

Everybody say, "RAINFOREST!"

Look! It's a bromeliad!

Jaden wanted to have his picture taken with the cock-of-the-rock mural . . . he recognized it instantly from the books we've been reading!
We even saw a sloth . . . but he was a little camera-shy! But Lael isn't ;)
A second highlight - the dolphin show!
(We sat in the "splash zone" at the kids' request, but didn't get splashed!)
They are such amazing creatures!
After leaving the aquarium, we decided to take a paddleboat ride -- getting an entirely different view of the harbor!
Daddy got quite a workout as he chauffered us around the harbor during our half-hour rental of the paddleboat!Then, since we were in Baltimore anyway, we decided to see if we could find Charm City Cakes (of Food Network's "Ace of Cakes" fame) . . . and we did! However, somehow, it didn't look the way we envisioned it would -- I guess things are always "larger than life" on television . . .

Thus ends our account of this latest field trip . . . hope you enjoyed it!

Our big boy is five years old!

Our wonderful son turned 5 last week . . . I've been reminiscing alot about the past five years -- how much life and joy he has added to our lives! I can't imagine our family without him!

Happy birthday, Jaden! You bring us so much joy!