Sunday, February 24, 2008

Sunday Silence

Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life." - John 4:13-14

Friday, February 22, 2008

Big Thoughts

We're back home from our wonderful week of retreat. Today's a snow day...again! I have loads of laundry and housework and church work to do. But I wish I could curl up in a corner and think big thoughts.

  • I want to process the retreat, think about what I've taken away and what that means in my life.
  • I desperately need to pray and evaluate the tears and broken heart of my littlest boy, who once again got in trouble at school. Is the strict legalism of this place harming my child?
  • I want to contemplate my oldest going off to college and pray for God to help him in this decision making process.
  • I want to seek God about what to get off my plate and what to put on. I can feel that He is changing my ministry, but it's so blurry right now.
  • And...I have to make some kind of sense out of the last episode of Lost Season 2!

Well, I have some big thoughts in this head of mine.

...except for the Lost Season 2 comment, ignore that one...

Good thoughts. I like these thoughts because I know that they lead somewhere. As I think and pray and listen, God will reveal to me the answers. And in the revealing I will get to know Him better.

Always a good thing.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

13 Things About Ohio's Amish Country

Brian and I have been, at the Pastors & Wives retreat this week in Sugarcreek, OH. It's been a great time and God has given me much to take home with me and ponder.

Tomorrow is our last day here. So in honor of this mini-vacation in Ohio's Amish Country, I will share this Thursday 13.

  1. Holmes County, Ohio, has the world's largest population of Amish, not Lancaster, PA.

  2. Amish and many Mennonites speak a unique blend of high German, called Pennsylvannia Dutch. They read the Bible and worship in traditional high German. So the Amish are fluent in three languages.

  3. World Crafts, located in Kidron, is part of the Mennonite project: 10,000 Villages. This is my favorite store in all of Ohio's Amish Country. They sell ethnic arts and crafts from around the world. The profits return to the local artist. I love, love, love the nativity sets!

  4. Lehman's Hardware, also in Kidron, is world famous for their non-electric appliances. They've even furnished Hollywood with period appropriate pieces.

  5. I have found nowhere else in my limited travels, where you are regularly served mashed potatoes, homemade stuffing, homemade noodles, homemade rolls, and gravy IN THE SAME MEAL. Carb heaven.

  6. There are many cheese factories in Ohio's Amish Country. Amish dairy farmers refuse some of the technology required for "approved" drinking milk. So they make cheese, wonderful cheese I might add.

  7. At Heini's Cheese try free samples of green moon cheese, chocolate cheeses, peanut butter cheese, and more. My favorite: lacy baby swiss.

  8. Attention seamstresses! You must, must, must go to Zinck's fabric warehouse. Sorry, no website, but you can find them in Berlin. They sell fabric at outrageous prices. I bought two bolts of denim there, the stuff that Amish men's pants are made out of. Virtually indestructable. I've made slipcovers, blue jeans, shopping bags, purses, and more out of that stuff. Ten years later I have just now used it all up.

  9. Ohio's Amish Country is "touristy" but it only takes a turn or two to get onto a township road and enter another world. Just today within five minutes we saw two one room Amish school houses, kids at recess throwing snowballs, fields of shocked corn, multiple buggies, and lines of laundry hanging on porches.

  10. Ohio's Amish drive around in square topped buggies. We used to live near Berne, IN, where the bishops would not allow their people to use covered buggies. Those poor people would drive around in open buggies using black umbrellas to block the wind.

  11. This region is not only home to Amish, but also multiple groups of Mennonites, Dunkards, Hutterites, and Brethren. You will find endless variati on the prayer cap and cape dress.

  12. What I admire about the Amish: Their work ethic and their purposeful removal of distractions. I think this has given them a strong family bond that we struggle to achieve today.

  13. What burdens me for the Amish: We have romanticized these people. We forget or don't take time to learn that their religion keeps many of them in fear. There is no freedom to be different, to question, or to leave. Those who do pay a huge price emotionally. There is much we can learn from these hard-working people, but not all the lessons are positive.

I hope you've enjoyed my little tour through Ohio's Amish Country. It's a great place to visit!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Changing the World - One Life at a Time

EDITED: I wrote this post last night and have decided to include it on Works for Me Wednesday.

...rather than my black beans and rice burrito recipe...

Yes, the following is what works for me this Wednesday - realizing that changing our world is done one person at a time, one act of love at a time. For other great WFMW tips see Shannon's Rocks in My Dryer.

I've been following the Compassion International Blog Tour. Amazing stuff has been chronicled over there and I encourage you to check it out. I consider the people who do these type of ministries to be my heroes.

But there are people in my own little church who are equally my heroes. I want to give them and the God empowering them my own bit of praise.
  • D & J leaving this Friday for their umpteenth medical mission trip, this time to Belize. Next month to Honduras.

  • D & E, already a family of 6, who just brought home little A from Ethiopia because they felt God called them to make a difference in the life of an orphan.

  • S & H who are in the midst of the adoption roller coaster, going through depression and doubt, because they feel called to bring home a little orphan girl from Vietnam.

  • The 20 odd kids in our little church who raised $700 to buy 10 goats and share the love of Jesus with needy families.

  • E who is graduating this spring and starting her ministry journey with CAMA, as a single woman. Brave girl.

I am privileged to call these people my friends. I worship with them almost every week. And they, in the power of Christ, are changing our act of service at a time.

Pastor's & Wives Retreat

I'm headed out the door to one of my favorite events, our district's Pastor's Wives Retreat, held at the Carlisle Inn in Sugarcreek, OH.
I wrote about it a bit here.

I can't wait!

The Inn has wireless, so I may post a bit. If I don't, you'll know why.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Agape and Apologetix

Last night was our annual Agape Dinner. Our church family always has a lot of fun at this event.

We do an Agape Dinner in place of the traditional Valentine's Banquet, including the whole church family. It's a time celebrating God's love, especially the evidence of that love in the past year.

Everyone brings a pot of soup to share. Together we enjoy testimonies, music, games, and entertainment. This year we had Pastor Brain and the Elders, aka my husband and the elder board. They did a lip sync to Apologetix's Baa We're Lambs. It was a big hit!

Are you familiar with Apologetix? They are a Christian parody band. Baa We're Lambs is a parody of Beach Boy's Barbara Ann. Here's a cute You Tube of the song to get your Monday started off right. The lyrics are below.

Baa Baa Baa Baa Baa we're lambs
Baa Baa Baa Baa Baa Baa
I'm a lamb -- in God's hand -- I'm a lamb
He's got a flock of lambs who know Him
Robbers cannot steal 'em from His hand
Baa Baa Baa Baa we're lambs
Went through the fence, lookin' for some friends
God saw me scram so He brought me back again
Cause I'm a lamb in God's hand
You got to follow where He's goin'
God'll take you in the Promised Land

CHORUS: Baa! We're lambs, Baa!
We're lambs, Baa! We're lambs ...

Tried many moves -- Tried getting loose
Tried petting zoos but I knew they wouldn't do
Cause I'm a lamb in God's hand
You got to follow where He's goin'
God'll take you in the Promised Land
Baa Baa Baa Baa we're lambs

CHORUS: Baa! We're lambs,
Baa! We're lambs, Baa! We're lambs ...

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sunday Silence


The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you." Genesis 12:1

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Saturdays As Me

Today I pay for my frivolous fun. I will pull out my pastor's wife super hero cape...

which in my mind looks like the 1969 LGB Little Red Riding Hood...

I will lace up my tennis shoes and fly like the wind.

Saturdays are crunch day in a ministry family. If the week was busy, if everything didn't get done, it has to be done today. Sometimes we've been up till early morning hours preparing for worship the next day.

Today will include copying last week's sermon tapes, copying bulletins, preparing for communion, packing tubs of supplies for our Sunday evening Agape Dinner, and making a slideshow of 2007 pictures.

In addition to dispensing hugs, snacks, stories, and a listening ear as resident mom.

Probably not every pastor's wife is as involved in her husband's ministry as me. But I am. And I wouldn't change it. Before I even dated Brian I felt called to ministry. I wasn't sure how to define it as a young single woman, but I trusted that God would.

And God did. I have the privilege of working as a ministry partner with my husband.

Being a pastor's wife looks like many things. Today, for me, it will look like a blur.

Friday, February 15, 2008

There and Back Again

Just a little over 24 hours ago, I did something very unusual. I followed a whim.

I traded places with my husband, went with my son to Malone College, spent the night in a hotel watching Lost, and hung out with college kids today.

It was an alternate universe!

I did all the driving in a metro area. Don't laugh! Canton is metro compared to Southern Ohio.

I was alone in a hotel and stayed up late...and did I mention I watched Lost?!? You see, I just currently finished season 1 on DVD. So last night was a huge jump in the story line for me. I have at least one thousand questions, but I loved every minute of it.

I slept in, took a leisurely shower. Ate lunch with college kids...a western omelette the size of tire.

Then we toured the nearest C&MA church, Whipple Heights and saw their awesome facility and programs.

We scrounged around a huge Salvation Army store, blew off our evening play, and ate at Cracker Barrell.

At the Country Store I bought myself a watch with beaded bracelet. I never, never buy myself anything. And never, never, never purchase myself anything on impulse.

After all that fun we decided to come home early and surprise everyone.

Their reaction?

They were mad! Well, frustrated probably is a better description. Because I came home before they could cover their tracks and clean up the horrible mess they'd made in the last 24 hours.

Oh well. Unusual whims sometimes end that way. I don't regret a thing.

I will now return to my predictable life, satisfied with my little fling.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

13 Things I Love About My Husband

  1. is a glass half-full kind of guy
  2. drops anything to please me
  3. has a beautiful singing voice
  4. is a great preacher
  5. rarely says an unkind, critcal or negative word
  6. lets the two littles sit on his shoulder and comb his hair
  7. always has a smile
  8. he is an overcomer
  9. keeps me supplied with diet coke
  10. actually wants to go shopping with me
  11. has a beard
  12. wears a cool leather coat
  13. chooses me as his favorite companion

Happy Valentines Day, Brian!

This post is listed on the Thursday Thirteen.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Valentine Crayons - WFMW

Yesterday, during our snow day, the two littles and I made valentine crayons. I found the idea over at Family Fun.

To do this frugal and fun project you need:
  • two blonde willing helpers, hair color optional

  • heart shaped muffin tins or silicon baking cups, we used the silicon baking cups from Wilson which cost just under $9 and made this project no longer frugal!! But hey, the $9 was worth it for the fun we've had...and we'll re-use them.

  • old, broken, junky crayons, any church basement is a good source for these if you don't have your own...just ask first.
Preheat your oven to 250 degrees.

Peel the crayons. This step will help you experience, in a slight way, Chinese Bamboo torture.

Break crayons into 1" or so pieces and fill your muffin cups to slightly overflowing. If you used mini-cups bake for 10 to 15 minutes. We used full-sized cups and it took 30 minutes to melt the crayons. Let cool. Pop out.

While baking these I thought we'd done something wrong. Coming out of the oven my crayons looked like tie-dye gone wrong, not like the Family Fun pic. But this was because I was looking at the bottom of the crayon.

Thankfully when we popped out the cool crayon they looked wonderful!

The next step will be to package these cuties. We will put a card behind them in a treat bag. Optional sayings could be:

  • You color my world!
  • Valentine, you make my heart melt!
  • Happy Valentine's Day, for "crayon" out loud!

We have another snow day today, so we may be trying this valentine idea too!

For more great tips for your life in general, go to Works For Me Wednesday, hosted this week by Don't Try This At Home!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Snow Day

Ah, the warm cozy feeling of a snow day. I love it! The kids are all home. The two littles are out frolicking in the back yard. And I'm contemplating what this day might hold.

Valentine crafts with Jodan and Else Annah.

A crockpot of taco meat.

Felted slippers.

An Inspector Morse episode.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I was up past midnight in hopes of a snow day. My husband and older boys were finishing Lost season 1. It was riveting again.

My hope was not in vain.

I don't function well on little sleep...oh, and Lost season 2 is in transit. Yippee!

Thank you to all who visited me during the Big Bloggy Move. That was so fun!

Monday, February 11, 2008

The Big Bloggy Move

big bloggy move2Christy at After a Cup of Coffee...Or Two is hosting The Big Bloggy Move and today is the day!

You'll find a list of brand new blogs, brand new designs, and brand new homes. Christy was inspired to host The Big Bloggy Move because she moved her it's own domain. Congratulations Christy!

Little ol' me fits under the category of "new blog". So I want to welcome you to I Can Fly!

I started my blog to chronicle the the good things in my life. I have found my mind too often consumed with the negative. This morning I'm reminded of Philippians 4:8...

"...whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things."

Who am I? I'm a child of God, wife to a Pastor, mother to 5, soapmaker, children's ministry director, and jack of all trades. I love vintage hence my Little Golden Book blog theme.I have a son on the autism spectrum. Our marriage and ministry has survived addiction.

If you would like read more of my story, click on the Ps. 103 button in the left column or explore my categories. I pray you feel welcomed and encouraged while you visit with me today!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sunday Silence


"Blessed is the man whose sin the LORD does not count against him..." Psalm 32:2

Saturday, February 9, 2008

I Can't Believe It's Not Butter

In addition to being consumed by Lost, we've been watching The Vicar of Dibley, a British comedy starring Dawn French. The show is hilarious, but is also riddled with profanity and sexual innuendo.

I hate that, because the comedic writing is genius! This show has some of the funniest characters I have ever seen. And Britain must agree because the show ran for three full seasons and then multiple specials through 2007.

In honor in of the good parts of this show, I will share with you my favorite clip from The Vicar of Dibley: Alice's words of wisdom about I Can't Believe It's Not Butter.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Sliced Pizza, Sinuses, Lost, and Other Random Drivel

Today is pizza-day at our little Christian school. $1 per slice. My children squeek by with 2 pieces each = $4. For $5 I could get them a whole Little Ceaser's pizza. I hope the school is making some kind of profit on this. It's the only way I can make peace with it.

Joseph is home sick today. I'm not sure what ails him other than sinuses. My ASD child clearly is not in touch with his body. He rarely can read the warnings of illness. I sent him to school yesterday with a stuffy nose. They call me at 10 to please come get him. Joseph was white as a sheet and couldn't process what people were saying. It all leaves a mother feeling rather helpless.

I just finished watching Lost: Season 1 on DVD. I know, I know. I'm way behind the times. But we don't have cable or satellite TV...for which I'm truly thankful. I must admit this series is riveting, in an Alfred Hitchcock-slash-Survivor kind of way. I am breathlessly watching my library holds to see when season 2 comes in. What happens to Walt!!! Don't you dare tell me.

Today should be an office day for me, but with Joseph sick I'll try to work at home. I just don't feel comfortable leaving him alone, even though he is a teenager. I'm praying desperately that I actually do get work done and that my newest DVD series, Inspector Morse, will not drag me in.

DVD series can be evil!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The Land of Nod - WFMW

My favorite online store of late is Land of Nod. They carry great toys, books, decorating and storage items.

I admit I haven't purchased anything from them, but they're my choice for window shopping! And I get great ideas for my children's rooms.

I hope you enjoy Land of Nod too!

Check out Works for Me Wednesday - Online Shopping Edition for more great e-stores!

Monday, February 4, 2008

We're Off to See the Wizard!

It's official! Josiah is cast as....

The Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz.

How can you beat that? The title role. The one all mankind searches for. All yellow brick roads lead to him.

Plus he gets the best line in the whole play...

"Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!"

My prayers were answered. He is happy and excited. He persevered with grace. I believe he will have fun.

And just to whet your appetite...

You can reserve your tickets any time...

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Sunday Silence


"...Jesus...was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light." Matthew 17:1-2

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Snow White Visits the Library

Here's my little princess at today's Princess Party at our local library. Sorry for the blur; forgot the flash.

This Snow White costume was a Christmas present. She requested it and I knew it was a "must do". She'd worn her store-bought one to shreds.

I made the costume from Simplicity 9384. This pattern is not for a beginner. The bodice had self-made piping. The sleeves were sewn with three layers of fabric and multiple steps.

But it was cheaper to make than most princess costumes. The fabrics are all broadcloth purchased at 50% off. There are no special trims. The only notions were thread, hooks & eyes, interfacing, zipper, and elastic. I had all of those on hand except the zipper.

I made this costume a bit big, in hopes it will fit her the Summer of 2009. I'm dreaming of another trip to Disney...

But for now, we satisfy ourselves with a Princess Party at the library. Enjoy the pictures!

Riveting story time...

Crown with jewels, glitter and feathers...

And a princess parade!

Jesus and Paper Clips

Continuing our study of Jesus Calms the Storm, our kids will be doing science in Children's Church on Sunday. They will experiment with waves, momentum, and paper clips discussing fear and the storms of life. Hopefully they will more fully understand the peace that Jesus gives us in our storms.

Here is the paper clip experiment they will do, based on water surface tension:

Paper Clip Float

  • Drop a paper clip in a cup of water. What happens?
  • Tear off a piece of paper towel that is slightly larger than the paper clip.
  • Place the piece of paper towel on top of the water.
  • Gently place another paper clip on the piece of paper towel. Wait a few seconds. Now what happens?

If you drop a paper clip in water, the paper clip sinks. But if you put the paper clip on a piece of paper towel after about 30-45 seconds the paper towel sinks and the paper clip floats. This is because water particles are attracted to each other in all directions, making them "stick" together.

However, because there are no water particles above them, the water particles at the surface "stick" only to particles next to and below them. This makes the surface act as if it had a thin "skin". This is called surface tension. The paper towel helps you to lower the paper clip onto the surface gently without breaking the surface tension.

Do you ever feel like the first paper clip? “sunk” when there’s trouble or a problem? If you’re the second paper clip and the paper towel is Jesus, how does Jesus keep you “afloat”?

You can find great teaching ideas just like this one at!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Taco Meat in the Crockpot - GFCF

This is my all-time favorite recipe. There is absolutely no prep to this recipe. Just throw it all in, stir it up, and ignore how gross it looks. Six to seven hours later, stir it up again and voila you have "taco meat".

Use the meat for nachos, tacos, burritos, whatever your heart desires. And, of course, it's cheap...and GFCF. I found this recipe somewhere on the internet...not sure where... and adapted it to make it a bit cheaper.

Taco Meat in the Crockpot

2 lb. ground beef or turkey
1 1/2 c. dried pinto beans
1 medium onion, chopped
1 heaping tbsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. salt
2 packets GFCF taco seasonings or the equivalent of your own homemade mix
4 c. water

Put all in the crockpot. Stir till mixed. Cook on high for 6 to 8 hours. Stir and drain if necessary. Serve as desired.

This recipe serves our family of 7 for about $3.50 without toppings. We have enough leftover for our ASD son's lunch box. You can substitute dry onions in this recipe, just increase the water by 1/2 cup.

Call Backs!

The game is on...

Josiah has callbacks on Saturday at 3 pm.

I'm thankful it's not till afternoon. He doesn't get home till 10 pm tonight.

For you Mitford fans, I'm praying the prayer that never fails...

"Thy will be done."