Food, Finds, Fevers and a Fine Timeline

Dinner was good tonight- spaghetti and rolls. I got up from my nap at 3, and at first didn’t want to fix rolls, but talked myself into doing so because I had just enough time to let them rise and bake them. Plus, salad hasn’t been an option lately, as we have lost the strainer insert of our salad spinner, and I don’t think to buy salad at the store anymore. What a weird thing to lose. I have looked everywhere (except where it is, of course), and concluded that it must have gotten thrown away. How could we have thrown away a bright green bowl? Who knows. I have thrown away some expensive objects, and am particularly good at tossing Cutco knives in the trash. They get shoved in with the chicken carcass, the potato peelings, the onion skins. Thankfully, I miss the knife before the trash goes out and get to dig through it all to find it. But one cannot justify throwing away a salad spinner bowl, in any way.

I found my Bible. Who knew the cover is the same exact color as buckeyes? I had looked through the basket where it was before, but saw only a few items of clothing and buckeyes I had stashed there to make necklaces with the cousins last weekend. It was such a relief to find it; I had to sit right down and read it.

Kenan has had a fever almost this whole week. When the older ones have fevers, I let them run their course, with medicine. With toddlers and younger, it usually signals an ear infection and trip to the doctor. Although Kenan had some really rough nights, one he spent on my chest (guess who didn’t sleep that night), each night has gotten better and he doesn’t give me the sense it hurts him to lay his head down, something others usually can’t stand to do. So, I hope I am not neglecting him by treating him like the older folks. We medicate and we wait.

Tomorrow is our book club. We are meeting at our church, to put the gym to good use.:) As we began the biography of George Muller, I noticed he lived almost the entire 19th century! What a wide variety of events, people and discoveries were made during his lifetime! I found a website, Fact Monster, that had a page where a lot of the big ones were listed, about 50-60 of them. Luke told me I should have the kids narrow the list down to 25, and write about why they included what they did on their list. The kids weren’t real excited about this project at first, but I think after they looked up some of the ones they’d not heard of and started compiling their lists, they got more interested. The finished product is a poster we will share tomorrow that has timeline figures glued to it for each event, person or invention they listed. Some of them could have been more eloquent in their defense of the event (“I chose the Civil War because it was scary” “I chose  the Haymarket Riot because it was important”), but I am proud of their work. It made us want to research some things further, like Napoleon and Simon Bolivar. Remember the Alamo! We now know a little better why.

Where O Where

…Is my Bible? When I called a friend today and explained I thought I left it at her church last Thursday, it occurred to me that this sounded very unspiritual of me. How could I be missing my Bible for five days and only now be calling her about it? I resisted the urge to make lame excuses like:

-We cleaned out our van in great haste Saturday morning; I figured I must have put it in the back with the other items I wanted to hide from our traveling buddies

-You should see our bedroom right now; each day I looked under a pile and didn’t come up with anything

-We have many other Bible versions available around the house and online, and I found doing my Bible study with them, particularly The Message on Saturday, quite enriching

Silly, fruitless chatter going on in my mind. Fact is, I feel as if I have lost one of my arms, or even an eye. I hope it will turn up soon.
A couple of hours after I called my friend about my Bible, Noah came running from his bedroom, saying a blue minivan had just stopped at our mailbox and put something in it. We thought this might be my Holy Book, so Sam went running down the driveway to see. He returned with a bag of not one, but two new phone books we don’t need. Sigh.

I suggested getting The Message as a gift for someone for Christmas, and Luke uttered a vehement No Way. I didn’t realize he felt so strongly about this translation, er, paraphrase. I think it is kinda fun to read, once in a while. No, one shouldn’t probably go around memorizing portions of it, but I don’t see the harm in reading it. I’m studying Matthew (in BSF) right now, and the reactions Mr. Peterson has the Pharisees producing in chapter 9 are quite humorous: “Hocus Pocus!” they conclude when Jesus drives out an evil spirit from a mute. I heard this quote at lecture last night-
“The unbelieving mind will not be convinced by any proof. The worshipping heart needs none.” ~A.W. Tozer

Time to start my pantry chili and a cake of cornbread. Looking forward to eating it tonight.

Great Lengths

Luke must really love our dog, Bella. Over the past week he has been doing all kinds of things to help her keep warm this winter. He bought a lamp and installed it in her dog house, in the hopes that it will give off some heat to keep the house warm, or at least warmer than it is outside. He also has started putting a child’s sized vest on her during cold nights. It is the funniest thing seeing her running around the yard in her vest. I guess some dogs wear clothes all year round, but this would be considered extreme pampering for Bella, since we have trouble even remembering to feed and water her. And really, all this attention to keeping her warm/alive this winter outdoors I can consider as Luke’s love gift to me- I Do Not Want Her Indoors in a cage, like she was last winter. That was unpleasant, to say the least, especially the time she got sprayed by a skunk. I thought we’d never stop smelling it in the house.

Luke gave the three older boys haircuts last week, and while I was not ready to cut off Adon’s curls at the time, I think I want him to get another trim soon. Kenan’s hair is growing out pretty straight, so maybe after his birthday picture is taken, I will ask Luke to cut his, too. He does not yet have the customary overalls for the picture; I told Sarah, who is his buddy now, to get them for him for Christmas.

Over breakfast we briefly discussed a menu for Thanksgiving dinner, and some Christmas gift-giving thoughts. Dinner will be spectacular as always, with turkey made the same way as last year, and some more of a good stuffing recipe I found last year, too. I had bookmarked the blog where I found the turkey recipe last December, but long about spring had deleted it. I worried I might not be able to find it again, but tried googling “Best Roast Turkey” or something like that. When the results come up, most of them are going to be blue, but if I have visited the site before, it will come up purple. The site came up purple, and on the first page, too! Luke gave me a disinterested look when I shared how exciting (and a bit creepy) it was that Google not only remembered me visiting the page before, but knew what I was likely looking for and put it on the first page of results. He works with Google every day, and its wonders (and all-seeing eye) are often lost on him.

We just switched buddies- before it was boys with boys, girls with girls, and Abbie was the odd girl out, since Kenan was a boy and couldn’t really use a buddy yet. Now, it is the five older paired with the five younger. Sam was not happy to get Adon again, as he is a handful right now, but I couldn’t see us picking names again in the hopes he’d get someone different. Maybe he needs Adon as much if not more than Adon needs him. So I am thinking the buddies will have a Christmas gift exchange. That should be really cute, seeing what they will get for each other. At this very moment Kenan is thinking about Sarah and her particular likes and dislikes, and is drawing up a list of possible gifts. I can hear him grunting in concentration. I can think of many things we can get Luke, but the problems will be 1) keeping him from knowing and 2) keeping him from getting it for himself first. I give up on this most Christmases, but there is one thing in particular that if I could furnish it it would really surprise him. We shall see.

We are almost done reading a biography about George Muller for this month’s book club. How inspiring to think of the many ways God provided for His orphanages, simply because George asked Him to, and not anyone else. I wonder why God does not provide certain things for us that I have asked for in the past, and think one reason is that I am not being a very good steward with what I already have. At one point in the book, George asks his wife, Mary, to get rid of her silver and finery that she has decorating their house, with the thought that as they minister to the very poor, it wouldn’t do to have these nice things laying around their house. Our pastor wrote a neat daily devotional for the 40 days leading up to the MY HOPE with Billy Graham program, and on one of the days he asked a challenging question: are you holding onto anything that you would be embarrassed to have when the Lord returns? I hope not, but look around my house and see all the stuff…Ay yi yi. Most of it is raising kids stuff, I know. And it is our kids that keep me from too much materialism and greed. That’s good. May this Christmas be the best yet for me to let go of the gets and major on the giving.