“Was Jesus In Little League?”

I’m not trying to say that it is necessarily wrong for children to play organized sports. My point is simply this: Being a member of an organized traveling baseball squad at age ten doesn’t add a single day to one’s life. In fact, many of these activities get in the way of much loftier pursuits. People turned boys into men and girls into women for most of recorded history without dragging them around town with their tongues hanging out in an effort to keep up with their overachieving, undereducated, theologically illiterate peers as they try to win trophies that will eventually gather dust in a basement somewhere.
If I teach my son to keep his eye on the ball but fail to teach him to keep his eyes on Christ, I have failed as a father. We must refuse to allow trivial, temporal pursuits to interfere with the main thing. Making the team is a tremendous achievement; however, it must be put in its proper perspective. No sports endeavor will ever be as important as becoming a man or woman of God. ~Voddie Baucham, Family Driven Faith, p.20

Whew! I can almost hear you all clicking over to the comment page! I completely agree with what Voddie is saying here. Because Luke and I think along the same lines on this, none of our kids have yet participated in organized sports. It will be a matter of their interest and talent in that particular area if they ever do. It will not just be a way for them to have social interaction. Big A has shown to possibly have a gift in dance; we are not ready for the expense of dance classes, but are considering it down the road. I was reading the Jeub family blog last night, and noticed they only do one extracurricular activity for the family at a time. Their one son, however, has shown real ability in gymnastics, so they have allowed him to get involved. I like this approach. So many times I see parents putting their kids in activities for other reasons than the child actually having potential in it. Maybe the parent wants a break, or, as Voddie put it on the previous page in this same chapter,

We believe that somehow we are depriving our children of experiences that will make them more liked, more respected, more normal. Hence we trade in the biblical standard for a cultural norm that hovers just below mediocrity.

That phrase “a cultural norm” stands out to me. The effect our culture has had on us as Christians has been on my mind lately. It would seem that I would do many things in life differently if I didn’t have the influence of my culture on me. So many controversies within our faith (birth control, obesity, finances, homeschooling, etc.) wouldn’t be issues at all if we got serious about what God’s word said about it. It is quite thought-provoking.

What do you think about Voddie’s position on sports? Too harsh? Too backward? Do you think the “cultural norm” is all that dangerous? I’d love to hear.

Book Love

dsc03202.JPG I have almost as much trouble with books as I do with the Internet. Keeping to nonfiction has helped somewhat; there isn’t so much the threat of ‘escaping’ into books about herbs or aprons. Today my mom brought me a couple of books I had been waiting for from her library, and I am so excited to get going on them. I started Family Driven Faith at naptime, and may just have to peek into the Amy Carmichael tonight. I know, I’m a wild one, reading books concurrently. Stay tuned for oodles of quotes, and my thoughts on those quotes.

Weekend Thoughts

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a yard-sale fairy? She swoops in on her labeling gun, makes all sorts of suggestions on things you can do without, and arranges and runs the whole sale! Every weekend, I think how I would love to assemble an impromptu yard sale, but have neither the energy nor the desire to actually go through with it. Maybe in a few weeks. I definitely want more stuff gone before we make the big (and hopefully final) move late this fall. A brand new, empty house is my goal. Clean slate.

Coming tomorrow: Wouldn’t it be nice to have a 5:00 kitchen fairy?

Burton Funnies

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I was at the sink in Carol’s bathroom (also the laundry room), scrubbing out a stain with an old toothbrush. Big A comes up behind me and watches for a while.
“Mom, Grandma Carol wouldn’t like for you to use her toothbrush like that, would she?”
The way she said it, I figured it was somewhat rhetorical, so I said, “Probably not.”
I kept on scrubbing, and she kept on watching.
“Grandma Carol’s not going to like that you’re using her toothbrush, Mom!”
Whoops- let’s quickly show her Grandma’s toothbrush, hanging safely out of Mom’s reach.

Trim Pickin’s

Okay, faithful readers. The time has come to pick out the trim for the dress I am making. Here’s a picture:

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The white I would just sew on, but the greens each would need their own tutorial for me to learn how to add. I might try the knife pleat Cheytown did on the original shirt dress with the polka dot ribbon, and I would probably double over the green fabric and make a ruffled trim with it.
So, which one do you think would look the best? Please help a struggling seamstress out.

Tongue Taming

Mrs. Kelly was stout and gentle. She was like a large, anxious dove. She was different than Betsy’s mother who was slim and red-headed and gay. Betsy’s mother knew how to scold as well as laugh and sing. But Tacy’s mother never scolded.

“If I tried to scold eleven [children] I’d be scolding all the time,” she explained to Betsy one day.

~Betsy and Tacy, by Maud Hart Lovelace

I’ve been noticing my short fuse with the kids lately. It seems like every word that comes out of my mouth is in the form of a bark, or at least a little sharper than the offense dictates. I don’t want my children growing up remembering me as a tyrant, so in times of discipline I want to work on my delivery. 🙂 Though it is difficult to control one’s tongue, I am promised supernatural power at it, if I only ask for the Holy Spirit’s help:

Set a guard over my mouth, O LORD;
keep watch over the door of my lips. Psalm 141:3

Happy Birthday! Now With Cake!

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He requested a “bassetball cake”- way to use up some orange icing

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My firstborn son is five today. I snapped this picture because it shows two of the things he is wild about these days, pirates and Ohio State.

Every child’s birthday evokes some memories of when they were born and how it happened, but I would have to say that S’s birth story is the most memorable. I thought about sharing it here, but I already have told most of his story in at least two previous posts. Suffice to say, we are so glad to have this not-so-little guy with us, healthy and whole, and are excited to see the person he’s becoming.
Saturday we have the big celebration planned- Luke will take him down to the Ohio State Football spring game, then return to our house for dinner and cake with family and friends. I still can’t decide which cake I should make: a round, buckeye-shaped one, or a football field. The football field has already been done this birthday season, but it is super easy.

Look Who’s Sewing!

dress1.JPGWell, not yet. But I’ve got a good start on the shirt dress I mentioned wanting to try. No, Luke was not willing to part with his nifty plaid, but I found a cute one at a rummage sale last weekend that will do nicely. The shirt had a pocket on it with a button closure that is rather cute. There are two more (button closures, not pockets) on the sleeves, so I could reuse them somehow on the dress.dress2.JPG Any thoughts? And, I could put the whole pocket on the front of the dress, but that might be too busy after it has trim and all. Still to buy: elastic for straps and some kind of trim fabric, lace, or ribbon. A white eyelet would be darling, as would a lime green calico. Any thoughts? How about you just finish this thing for me? 🙂

Burton Funnies

There was a tornado spotted in our area Friday night, so we headed to the basement for the duration of the storm. In the basement you could find just about every kind of toy known to children, so the kids would have no problem occupying the time. This must not be enough for Big A, though- when she got downstairs that night, and saw that Cousin N had brought his Legos from home, she said with much drama, “Oh good, N, at least you’ll have something to play with!”