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Jun 28, 2013

King's Island 2013

My company's annual King's Island family day was last week. 

This year was our best yet, I think because the kids are bigger and can do and ride more things.  We timed it so we could stay later (and not have to leave home so early in the morning - double score).  Seeing the park all lit up at night was very cool.  There were a few melt downs (Lena's were surely caused by her uncomfortable stye), rest assured, but they were short lived and fun was had by all! 

Thanks, Casto, for another great day!




Jun 26, 2013

Relay for Life

A couple weekends ago I packed Lena up for a quick overnight in Newcomerstown for the annual Relay for Life.

Attendance has decreased since Mom and Dad's church team first got involved in this worthy event years ago.  Back then, Lee Stadium was packed with tents and teams and people walking the track all night long to raise money for cancer research.  You could barely find a parking space in the nearby field, let alone in the high school parking lot.  But participation has slowly waned as the years go by, which is unfortunate.  I realize it must be a tremendous amount of work to plan for and pull off an event like that, especially in a small town like Newcomerstown.  But I sincerely hope new people step up to breath some new life into the Relay.  It's so worth the work.  
One thing that hasn't decreased is the spirit of the people who do show up, the people who give, the people who fight and survive, the people who honor those whose battle was lost.  That spirit of hope and remembrance and honor is alive and well.  I could feel it as we walked the track in silence, in the dark, the only source of light the glowing luminaries marked with names of people who cancer has touched or taken, and the only sound their names being read.

Mom's name is there now.
As are the names of too many family members and friends.

Jun 25, 2013

I Thought Someone Was Barbacuin!

Calm down, Sweet Brown.

It was just us having a little BBQ in the backyard.  Everybody's got time for that.

Jun 24, 2013

Ballerina Girl

Little Lena girl had her very first ballet class a couple weeks ago.  She couldn't have been more excited.  Sweet thing...just look at her.

Of course Sam had to show off his mad dance skills too.
Jazz hands!

Jun 13, 2013

Lunatic, Liar or Lord?

Hannah Rae posted this link on Facebook and I had to include an excerpt on my blog.  Because when I talk about Christianity with skeptical friends, this is the main thing they come back to.  They say, "Do you actually believe there is a man on a cloud in the sky watching over you?" And while some of them may accept that Jesus lived on earth and was a prophet and a great man and did good things, they cannot take the next step - they cannot believe that he is who he says he is.  That's their hang-up.  That was part of my hang-up when I was questioning.
Then I read Mere Christianity by CS Lewis.  And everything changed.

Whoa.  It is not an easy read.  But it intellectually explains Christianity in a way that makes sense. 

CS Lewis said, "I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God. That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic - on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronising nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to. ... Now it seems to me obvious that He was neither a lunatic nor a fiend: and consequently, however strange or terrifying or unlikely it may seem, I have to accept the view that He was and is God."

It's the trilemma.  Was Jesus Lunatic, Liar or Lord?  It's a simplistic way of breaking down Christianity, but it's at the heart of what we believe. 

Bono spells it out below in his own words from an interview a couple years ago.

Interviewer: That’s a great idea, no denying it. Such great hope is wonderful, even though it’s close to lunacy, in my view. Christ has his rank among the world’s great thinkers. But Son of God, isn’t that farfetched?

Bono: No, it’s not farfetched to me. Look, the secular response to the Christ story always goes like this: he was a great prophet, obviously a very interesting guy, had a lot to say along the lines of other great prophets, be they Elijah, Muhammad, Buddha, or Confucius. But actually Christ doesn’t allow you that. He doesn’t let you off that hook. Christ says: No. I’m not saying I’m a teacher, don’t call me teacher. I’m not saying I’m a prophet. I’m saying: “I’m the Messiah.” I’m saying: “I am God incarnate.” And people say: No, no, please, just be a prophet. A prophet, we can take. You’re a bit eccentric. We’ve had John the Baptist eating locusts and wild honey, we can handle that. But don’t mention the “M” word! Because, you know, we’re gonna have to crucify you. And he goes: No, no. I know you’re expecting me to come back with an army, and set you free from these creeps, but actually I am the Messiah. At this point, everyone starts staring at their shoes, and says: Oh, my God, he’s gonna keep saying this. So what you’re left with is: either Christ was who He said He was the Messiah or a complete nutcase. I mean, we’re talking nutcase on the level of Charles Manson. This man was like some of the people we’ve been talking about earlier. This man was strapping himself to a bomb, and had “King of the Jews” on his head, and, as they were putting him up on the Cross, was going: OK, martyrdom, here we go. Bring on the pain! I can take it. I’m not joking here. The idea that the entire course of civilization could have its fate changed and turned upside-down by a nutcase...for me, that’s farfetched.

Bono later says it all comes down to how we regard Jesus:

Bono: If only we could be a bit more like Him, the world would be transformed. When I look at the Cross of Christ, what I see up there is all my shit and everybody else’s. So I ask myself a question a lot of people have asked: Who is this man? And was He who He said He was, or was He just a religious nut? And there it is, and that’s the question. And no one can talk you into it or out of it.

Thanks, Hannah Rae, for posting that.  It's a great reminder that faith doesn't have to be complicated and farfetched.  It's simple truth when we break down the facts and remove our own fear and hang-ups.

Jun 12, 2013

Sam's Sick Morning

Just before 6 am this fine morning, Sam entered our room with no pants on and his hands held out in front of him. (Warning: lots of TMI to follow, my sharing of which Sam will surely need therapy for later in life, but, hey, it's kind of funny.)

Sam: Mom, um, I need to wash my hands. 
Me: Okay, son, wash them in the other bathroom.  Daddy and I are trying to sleep.
Sam: Okay.
Me: Wait, why do you need to wash your hands?
Sam: I have poop on them.
Me: Poop?
Sam: Poop.
Me (getting out of bed and walking Sam to the other bathroom): Sam, how did you get poop on your hands?
Sam: Well...I pooped a bunch and I...
Me: Oh, you just got some on your hands when you were wiping?
Sam: Well...kind of.
Me: Tell me.
Sam: There's also poop on the carpet in my room.  And in my pants.
Me (upon seeing what was in the toilet, what was left of his butt, what was on the floor of his room and in his pants): Oh, baby, you're sick!
Sam: Sick?
Me: Yes. This (moving my hand in a large circle, gesturing to the entire scene)...this doesn't happen unless you're sick.  Does your belly hurt?
Sam: Kind of, I guess.
Me: Okay.  Let's get you cleaned up and you can go rest in your room while Mommy cleans up the rest.
Sam: I tried to clean it up myself, Mommy, but I couldn't get it all.
Me: Oh, Sammy.  If you're sick like that, don't try to take care of it yourself.  I'm your Mommy.  Just call for me and I'll help you. 
Sam: Oh. Okay, Mommy.  That's handy to know.

Sammy, trying to be quiet and clean up his sick mess all by himself.  Poor sweet boy.

But I have to tell you, I might need therapy myself after witnessing what was in that toilet this morning. If you're a parent, I know you too have probably been shocked to find that...things that size...can come out of your little tiny kids.  I mean, my God.  I think that thing this morning had a heartbeat. 

So we're hanging at home today, bleaching and laundering messes, praying for no encore, making grandma's soup and bread, having a movie marathon, trying to explain why Sam can't go outside to jump on the trampoline on such a lovely morning...

And trying to erase the memory of Sammy's sick morning (I'm shuddering at the mere mention).

Jun 5, 2013

Darby Creek Fun

Rich had the day off yesterday, so we took the kids to Batelle Darby Creek Metro Park just southwest of Columbus.  It was an absolutely perfect day - mid 70's, nice breeze, sunshine and the peace and quiet of all those acres of parkland. 
The kids played for awhile on a lovely shaded playground, then we walked a long trail in search of the park's bison, and finished the day with a fishing expedition.  The bison eluded us, but the path through the woods and open fields was beautiful.  Reminded me of home and made my heart all mushy and warm...I'm such sap!  I even busted out singing What a Wonderful World at one point, but it was toward the end of the trail and the kids were tuckered and way past joining me for a sing-along.  
Speaking of kids, is this not the most precious picture?
Playground fun.

Rich found a tiny frog along the wooded path.  Both of the kids held it.  They were very brave.



This is where the bison should have been...the park people must have corralled them elsewhere.

Hello, handsome...

Hello stinky monkeys...

My girl's first fishing rod - Barbie pink and everything.  I taught her how to cast and she pulled off a couple decent tries.  Made me so proud.

Sammie's been fishing with Rich for at least one season now.  He can really cast that reel out there.  Great fisherman already at the age of 5. 

We'll definitely be returning to that Metro Park.  It was a perfect day.