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27 February 2008

-5R + 85 = 12R

Said to daughter working on algebra homework,
"well, it's always easier to keep it positive if you can..."

now there's a rule for life...

26 February 2008

"A Musical Burst of Diplomacy"

J. and I think this is a neat story!

23 February 2008


I confess, I am typically slow to embrace new technology. I have heard about the video camera for the computer for ages, and absolutely refused. I think of how I typically look while in front of the computer (like right now, in a sweatshirt and pajama bottoms..., or at early am hours, me and my bible and my online concordance and commentary...). But, I have had a change of heart.

Today we had our first Skype video call with friends Beth and Harold in Australia. What a treat! Go figure! We are half the world away from them. We were in the middle of a midwest Saturday afternoon and they were dressed and ready for church in Melbourne. And we each sat in front of our computers and had a chat. We saw Harold's new beard! We laughed with one another. We caught up.

It's the Jetsons in real life!
I'm sold.
Sign up.
We'll chat.

Warning to the Bibliophile...

"Beware you be not swallowed up in books! An ounce of love is worth a pound of knowledge."
John Wesley (1703-91)

22 February 2008

Friday Five- art

Today's Friday Five is actually the Friday 6- 6 pieces of art. The artists? Grown in-house.

My kids are MUCH (that is purposely in CAPS and in bold) more artistic than their mom or their dad. (maybe their dad would argue, but I don't think so...) Today's Five was inspired by S., who before 8 this morning, was working on yet another craft- a space helmet. These guys are always doodling and creating, and even though that can be messy at times, and even though it means that I am forever in search of my scissors and tape, it is a joy to me.

Here's Five (well, Six) Pieces of Art from artists I enjoy:

The stained glass sunflower is from our Su. girl. It was her second solo glass piece- pretty neat, no? It hangs over my sink, so I look at it frequently. And enjoy it always.

The modern Jackson Pollack-esque work is by J. He created it in art class a few years back. J has always been an artist. He has been creating incredibly detailed military battle scenes since he could hold a pencil. His rendition of Captain Hook, from an age 4 perspective, still makes me and his dad smile.

The vase was created by K. when she was 12. I especially love it's colors and angles. I didn't know that you couldn't actually put water in it at first, and boy was that a mess! Now it holds paper flowers that she and Su created. (they happen to be the only flowers thriving in our house...) K is also known to create neat jewelry pieces, and shares them with her friends.

L.'s little piece was created in the style of Monet, when she was 6. It didn't photograph well, so you'll have to believe me on that one. She describes it as "stripes," but it looks like a landscape to me. It reminds me of the sea.

The space helmet. S might best be described as a folk artist. She uses any and all materials around her. She can make a box into a work of art. All the better if the project requires a roll of tape, hot glue and glitter. She says that the space helmet really should have glitter on it, but the foil is sparkly enough. You should see this girl's paper doll wardrobe!

Finally, the heart prints. A. gave that to us when she was in, oh, 3rd or 4th grade. It was done with potato prints and I have had it hanging since the beginning. I love it. You can't really see in the photo, but she signed it, and I love that part about it, too. A. is still an artist and has given us really neat creations since, but this was the first, and so it's special to me for that alone.

So, yes, other artists I enjoy, but none as much as those that are home-grown!

21 February 2008

"Tozier's Legacy"

from the introduction to The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer:
"Quietness of soul, the fruit of truly seeking God, is seldom found in twentieth-century Christians. Far too many have come to accept turbulence of soul as the norm and have ceased to seek God with their whole hearts. Some have fled the cities to cloistered retreats in the hope of finding this quietness, only to discover their hearts still restless."

and then from Tozer:
"Come near to the holy men and women of the past and you will soon feel the heat of their desire after God. They mourned for Him, they prayed and wrestled and sought for Him day and night, in season and out, and when they had found Him the finding was all the sweeter for the long seeking."

"I pray Thee, show me Thy glory," said Moses. (Ex. 33:18)
My petition is the same...

20 February 2008

Austen INTJ?

Thanks to friend Julie for this quiz...

I am Elinor Dashwood!

You are Elinor Dashwood of Sense & Sensibility! You are practical, circumspect, and discreet. Though you are tremendously sensible and allow your head to rule, you have a deep emotional side that few people often see.

Take the Quiz here!

Colder than...

I don't know if this link to will update during the day, or if it will always show the snapshot of our weather at 8:27 am on Wednesday, February 20...

Omaha Weather Forecast and Conditions Nebraska

Just in case...
lets sum it up as COLD!!!

One child just walked past our thermometer and asked, "does that say negative seventy six?" HA! No, but negative 7.6 is cold enough for me.

Plus the wind.

But, better to be hot or cold than lukewarm, right?

17 February 2008

For the piano students...

FoxTrot by Bill Amend


Psalm 36
Wickedness of Men and Lovingkindness of God.
For the choir director. A Psalm of David the servant of the LORD.

1Transgression speaks to the ungodly within his heart;
There is no fear of God before his eyes.
2For it flatters him in his own eyes
Concerning the discovery of his iniquity and the hatred of it.
3The words of his mouth are wickedness and deceit;
He has ceased to be wise and to do good.
4He plans wickedness upon his bed;
He sets himself on a path that is not good;
He does not despise evil.

5Your lovingkindness, O LORD, extends to the heavens,
Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
6Your righteousness is like the mountains of God;
Your judgments are like a great deep
O LORD, You preserve man and beast.
7How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God!
And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Your wings.
8They drink their fill of the abundance of Your house;
And You give them to drink of the river of Your delights.
9For with You is the fountain of life;
In Your light we see light.

10O continue Your lovingkindness to those who know You,
And Your righteousness to the upright in heart.
11Let not the foot of pride come upon me,
And let not the hand of the wicked drive me away.
12There the doers of iniquity have fallen;
They have been thrust down and cannot rise.

From Matthew Henry's commentary on Psalm 36:
"Gracious souls, though still desiring more of God, never desire more than God."

He is enough.

15 February 2008

How many?

Look at that- 7 other me's in the US!
How 'bout you? :-)
LogoThere are
people with my name
in the U.S.A.">How many have your name?

Friday Five #1

Today begins a new "regular" feature in Prone to Wander... The Friday Five.

I am inspired by a semi-regular feature in the World Herald on Thursdays, My Five, where folks play show & tell with five of their favorite things. I thought, it's pretty easy to come up with lists of five, and hence, the Friday Five.

So today,
Five Things That Make My Kids Laugh at Their Mom:

5. When I play my ITunes play list, or the discs I've made from it, I am constantly saying, "OH! This is one of my favorite songs!" HA! As they have pointed out, of course it is one of my favorite songs! I'm the one that put it there!

4. I talk to my dogs in the same voice I talk to my children. Yes, I know they don't answer. Don't worry, I know they don't understand. (well, Dillon doesn't understand. He's a terrier. Deakin, I think he understands, but that's a conversation for a different post...)

3. I wave at cars, thinking that I know the person driving, and 9 times out of 10, not only is it a complete stranger, it is the farthest person possible from who I think it was going to be. One time I thought I was waving at my daughter's beautiful petite Indian friend, and when I got closer, realized that it was a teenage African American boy. With an afro. OOPS! This week I managed to wave at someone I actually knew and my kids cheered, out loud!

2. Every winter, I fall down. It's never graceful. This winter, it was coming out of church. Left a big ol' bottom print on the sidewalk snow. Even threw my glasses off. Come on- admit it! Who doesn't laugh at physical humor? I even had to laugh at myself.

1. Now they are laughing because I came up with the idea for the "Friday Five" and I can only think of four things... alas...

stay tuned for next week... :-)

14 February 2008

But the greatest of these...

"All things are possible to him who believes, they are less difficult to him who hopes, they are easier to him who loves, and still more easy to him who practices and perseveres in these three virtues."
Brother Lawrence, from The Practice of the Presence of God

12 February 2008

dirty laundry

It never ends.

(but, if you are looking to avoid it, this will amuse you for another minute or so...)

07 February 2008

Yes we can

For the record, this in no way constitutes an endorsement.

But, I do appreciate this rhetoric. It is from Barack Obama's speech after the New Hampshire primary. It even inspired a music video.

For when we have faced down impossible odds, when we've been told we're not ready or that we shouldn't try or that we can't, generations of Americans have responded with a simple creed that sums up the spirit of a people: Yes, we can. Yes, we can. Yes, we can.
It was a creed written into the founding documents that declared the destiny of a nation: Yes, we can.
It was whispered by slaves and abolitionists as they blazed a trail towards freedom through the darkest of nights: Yes, we can.
It was sung by immigrants as they struck out from distant shores and pioneers who pushed westward against an unforgiving wilderness: Yes, we can.
It was the call of workers who organized, women who reached for the ballot, a president who chose the moon as our new frontier, and a king who took us to the mountaintop and pointed the way to the promised land: Yes, we can, to justice and equality.
Yes, we can, to opportunity and prosperity. Yes, we can heal this nation. Yes, we can repair this world. Yes, we can.
And so, tomorrow, as we take the campaign south and west, as we learn that the struggles of the textile workers in Spartanburg are not so different than the plight of the dishwasher in Las Vegas, that the hopes of the little girl who goes to the crumbling school in Dillon are the same as the dreams of the boy who learns on the streets of L.A., we will remember that there is something happening in America, that we are not as divided as our politics suggest, that we are one people, we are one nation.
And, together, we will begin the next great chapter in the American story, with three words that will ring from coast to coast, from sea to shining sea: Yes, we can.

I wish the Republican candidates could give better speeches...

05 February 2008

not for the kids

Adults only!
Hot chocolate fans.

This is not your ordinary cocoa.


Created to know Him...

from our family devotional this morning...

Westminister Shorter Catechism question 46.- What is required in the First Commandment?
A.The first commandment requireth us to know and acknowledge God to be the only true God, and our God; and to worship and glorify him accordingly.

from Training Hearts, Teaching Minds by Starr Meade:

"Do you remember the very first question and answer of this catechism? 'What is the primary purpose of man?' 'The primary purpose of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.' God designed us to know Him, to enjoy Him, and to glorify Him. This first commandment tells us to have no gods but God. This is not at all an unreasonable command. It simply commands us to do what God created us to do. Because we were designed to enjoy and to glorify God, we will be the most satisfied and the most joyful when we are enjoying and glorifying God. So this first commandment requires us to do that which will make us the happiest.

Many people choose to serve other gods. They live to make money and have nice things or they live to have power or to have pleasure. They think they are doing what will make them happy, but they will finally discover that these things cannot satisfy them. God did not create people for these things. He created us to know Him."

Read Jeremiah 9:23-24

Snow Day

Snow days do not come often in the life of a home school family. We do our work and then enjoy the snow. The good side, no pesky snow days to "make up" at the tail end of the semester. But, we don't get too excited to wake up and see snow, thinking, "no school today!" Today, perhaps, is the closest we've come to a snow day in a long while.

We had a full day planned, and as the snow fell, and falls, every event began to fall away. No Latin class. No trio rehearsal. No road trip basketball game. And the best part? We didn't know to expect it when we began the day, so the work was in the process of being complete. The afternoon suddenly was wide open in front of us.

An entire day at home! Spicy Indian chicken in the crockpot. And now, laundry complete, floors vacuumned, dust off the sills, too?

Oh yes- and snow play! The girls concocted some colored liquids to make "snow kabobs" with. They sled. Now everyone warms with popcorn and a movie. I have two new magazines to enjoy. Yay for a snow day!

03 February 2008

When the saints...

This weekend, a friend introduced me to a new disc, and I bought it that night. Lyrics that compel and a beautiful voice besides.
When the Saints sums up so much that cannot be easily put into words...
I want to be one of them.

Lord I have a heavy burden of all I've seen and know
It's more than I can handle
But your word is burning like a fire shut up in my bones
and I cannot let it go

And when I'm weary and overwrought
with so many battles left unfought

I think of Paul and Silas in the prison yard
I hear their song of freedom rising to the stars

And when the Saints go marching in
I want to be one of them

Lord it's all that I can't carry and cannot leave behind
but your word has compelled me
when I think of all who've gone before me and lived the faithful life

And when I'm weary and overwrought
with so many battles left unfought

I think of Paul and Silas in the prison yard
I hear their song of freedom rising to the stars

I see the shepherd Moses in the Pharohs court
I hear his call of freedom for the people of the Lord

And when the Saints go marching in
I want to be one of them
And when the Saints go marching in
I want to be one of them

I see the long quiet walk along the Underground Railroad
I see the slave awakening to the value of her soul

I see the young missionary and the end of the spear
I see his family returning with no trace of fear

I see the long hard shadows of Calcutta nights
I see the sisters standing by the lepers side

I see the young girl huddled on the brothel floor
I see the man with a passion come and kicking down the door

I see the man of sorrows and his long troubled road
I see the world on his shoulders and my easy load

And when the Saints go marching in
I want to be one of them

--When the Saints by Sara Groves