Friday, April 30, 2010

Gifts and Surprises

This post is a deviation from my normal monologue of family events. This story is very interesting and involves another important part of my life--church.

Pocomoke River Church has existed for several years now. At first we met in our pastors' home, Earl and Pansy Sheats. For the last 18 months we have met in a hotel conference room. Several months ago Pastor Earl received an unexpected phone call from a lady who owns a vacant building on Market St. She was calling to offer this building to our church as a gift. (Wow!)

Several of the men walked through the cement block building. The cement block is about the only thing of value. The roof is flat and has been leaking for a long time. Due to the leaking the interior of the building has been destroyed. The extent of the remodeling that would be required caused the men to take some time to think and pray about the decision.

The decision was made to pursue the building. Really, who can turn down the gift of property?!

Pastor Earl worked on getting the paperwork straight for the transfer of the title. This turned out to be a very long process despite the simplicity of what needed to be done. Finally, two weeks ago it dawned on him that this property was uninsured and that the trustees of the building would be held liable if anything happened. He put a call in to the head trustee (that simply needed to write minutes of a meeting resigning the old trustees and naming new ones) and in a very short time the paperwork was finished.

Last weekend Pastor Earl changed the locks on the door and brought keys to the building for the families of the church. He also had in his hand the minutes that appointed members of Pocomoke River Church as trustees of the property!

As I understand it, now that the property is properly insured, the first order of business will be a new roof. The renovations will take some time and a lot of work. We are thanking the Lord for his provision so that we will be able to reach more people with the message of salvation.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Some of Our Fun

Tomorrow is Friday! Not that Friday really means anything to me these days, but I always have high hopes that it might be a special evening and lead to two fun family days. Jeremy has worked the last 3 Friday evenings and several week night evenings in between. Tonight he got home at 5:15 and Aliza, Josiah and I all ran outside to greet him.

This week has been a bit trying. Josiah was up most of Monday night with a stuffy nose. Aliza was up most of Wednesday night with a stuffy nose. I'm hoping that she has better sleep tonight. I'm not all that hopeful. She is still very congested. Since her 5 vaccinations in March she is convinced that all medicine is painful and loudly refuses medicine. At 2am last night I insisted that she take a dissolvable strip. You would not believe that drama that it took to get it down.

Through it all we've had some fun times!

Josiah loves to go outside and explore. I caught him checking out the flowerbed. A moment earlier he had his head down, trying to see through a crack in the deck.

Aliza saw a picture in her Highlights magazine of a pancake with a face. We duplicated the picture. She loved helping me write down the ingredients we needed to get at the grocery store.

There is nothing better than watching Daddy having quality time with his children. Tonight he was teaching Aliza how to swing the golf club. Aliza came running inside--"Mommy, I am SO proud of myself! I swing the golf club and I got a birdie."

Finally, a short video of Aliza riding her bike on the road for the first time!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Wearing Exhaustion

Can anyone relate?

(Thanks for the affirmation, Mom!)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

End of the Pulling Season

Apparently the poison oak or poison ivy has bloomed. Laura has the most horrific case of poison oak/ivy I have ever seen. She is on her second round of steroid treatment to try to knock it out. So we've called it quits for this season. Jeremy will do some roundup and (in a couple years) I might be ready to tackle it again. I can't complain about our progress. It was more than I could fit in one picture. Laura worked alone the last day when she got the poison oak/ivy. I was preparing for the tea party. I feel awful that she got such a bad outbreak, but I'm glad it is her young and not pregnant body that gets to fight it off. I would be in bad shape if I had been out there that day. Thanks a million again for all your work, Laura!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Janell's Baby Shower

It's almost time for me to be an aunt again! These are a few highlights from my sister, Janell's, baby shower.

Favors. A pack of wildflower seeds. The message says Jeff & Janell are "wild" about having a baby! Plant these seeds in honor of their new addition!

Food. Finger foods, chocolate fountain and pink punch.

Aliza got to be one of the ladies for the first time. I bought her a baby doll tub thinking it would be nice for her to have a gift to open. She has LOVED that tub. It has completely sparked her imagination. She has played with her doll all week. It was $4 well spent!

Jeff and Janell do a lot of cycling. Now the baby can ride along! From Janell's bicycle group.

Blanket made by my friend, Chrissy.

Lovely diaper bag. I'm biased! Christy (Columbia Lily) made it for me to give Janell.

Pregnant sisters! Janell's baby will be about 7 months older than mine.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

April Beach Day

We have had some 80 degree days mixed in with our usual 60 and 70 degree days. This week we took advantage of one of those 80 degree days and went to the beach. Aliza has asked to go to the beach several times a week since January so she was thrilled when I told her we were going to the beach. She was more daring than last summer--we will set some rules for our next trip! Josiah loved the sand.

We attempted a picture after they were all cleaned off.

Aliza is talking to Aunt Meghan on the phone. She finishes every phone conversation with Good night! Sleep tight! Don't let the bed bugs bite! If they do, get your shoe and hit them 'til they're black and blue! Good night!!! BEEP. She says it really fast so no one can understand what she is saying. Oh well. Aliza has been working doing a lot of water coloring recently.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

National Harbor

Some day I would like to see the cherry blossoms in Washington DC. Last fall we took a chance and booked some days with Jeremy's parents at a time share in National Harbor hoping that we would catch the cherry blossoms. We didn't. They were over. But we had some beautiful weather and some lovely green leaves!

National Harbor is a new tourist destination across the Potomac River from Alexandria, Virginia. It looks like it will be family friendly. There are lots of restaurants and some shops open. There are many more store fronts available and it appears that there is still development in progress. It will be interesting to see how the area evolves if we go there again.

After we arrived we found a nice sculpted sand area where the children could run, play and climb.
There was lots of hand holding.

Aliza is not a fan of posed pictures these days!

I wanted to go in to DC and apparently every one else was up to that too! Karen and I figured out the bus and metro, we packed a picnic lunch and hurried off to the bus station. The bus comes every half hour and we were within 5 minutes of the departure time. I did not want to wait 1/2 hour! So when we saw the bus sitting at the station I made my poor children run and sent Van to keep the bus for us! We made it, had to count our exact change and off we went to the metro station. At the metro station we had to figure out how to buy tickets (I would be awful on the Amazing Race), but we were able to walk right on the metro without waiting. Very awesome. Our goal was to get to the mall to have a picnic lunch. The station we got off at was a long way from the mall, but thanks to walking directions on Jeremy's iphone we got there. It was a very warm day and Aliza and Josiah were good little walkers!
This was a great spot for a picnic. Aliza could run around. Karen and I packed an awesome lunch. Josiah totally pigged out on Doritos.

After lunch we walked a relatively short distance to the WWII memorial. Aliza and Josiah put their feet in the water. All went very smoothly until I told them it was time to get their socks and shoes back on. Josiah stood up and promptly slipped and fell in the water. His shorts were soaked. He traveled back to the hotel in his shirt and shoes and diaper. (Unprepared mother! Of course my mother-in-law must have way more experience then me. She randomly threw a towel in her bag. How did she know we were going to be wet?!)

Aliza and Josiah hitched rides back to the metro station. They deserved it! We figured we walked about 3 miles. Josiah was exhausted! He fell asleep in my arms as we pulled in to our station. It was nap time when we got back to the hotel!

Aliza wanted to go swimming. We compromised with swimming in Grandma and Grandpa's whirlpool tub.

On Monday, Jeremy and his Dad went golfing. Karen and I took the children back to the sand area and had another picnic. Then Karen and I got to walk through a store in the evening and Jeremy took Aliza and Josiah to the sand!

All Josiah could talk about were lawnmowers, grass and tractors. After about 2 hours in the room he would go to the door and want to go for a walk. I'm afraid my little country boy felt a little confined in the city! Since we've been home he has played with his trucks and tractors very contentedly. =)

I had many moments where I could just enjoy watching and interacting with my family. Those memories and moments are what make a vacation a "vacation" these days.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


My friend, Maria, wanted a tea party to celebrate her 30th birthday. She and I talked about a whole bunch of different ideas and ultimately I offered to host the party. With a whole bunch of help, I think we put together a nice tea. Linda, Laura, Janell and Mom each had my children for a couple hours that day, Chrissy helped me prepare, serve and clean up the party. I borrowed tea cups, tea pots, tablecloth, napkins and serving plates from my Mom, Jan and Maria. My mother-in-law contributed the ingredients for a couple recipes and the name cards. Chrissy made a dessert and one of the sandwiches and Maria's mom contributed the ingredients for a sandwich and the fruit kabobs.

I made a 2 layer chocolate cake with chocolate icing (from scratch) for the centerpiece. I would have hated for Maria to forget the reason for this party!

Each person had their own teapot filled with the tea of their choice. Thanks to Chrissy's collection of tea we had a large assortment of teas to choose from.

After salad and soup, we served cucumber, chicken salad and ham and cheese ribbon sandwiches. We also had hot spinach and artichoke dip on pumpernickel bread. Then we had orange chocolate chip scones with clotted cream. For dessert there were chocolate covered strawberries, white chocolate raspberry bars, brownie cupcakes (Chrissy's awesome recipe!) and fruit kabobs. Everyone took a piece of birthday cake home with them!

Chrissy did an awesome job arranging the serving plates. My Mom had the lavender basket that we served the scones in. She gave it to me saying she had never been able to use it and would be happy if I could think of a way to use it. I loved how the scones looked in it.

Chrissy took the picture above. Maria is in the middle with her Mom and Mother-in-law on either side of her.

Chrissy and I. I could not have done this without her. Her family had a hard time imagining her helping with a tea party, but if I hadn't known I would have thought she had done it before! She was awesome.

It was fun. Maybe some day I will do it again for a very very special occasion!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Little Fisherman

Josiah got to go fishing! He loves checking out Grandad's boat. He found a stick and went "fishing" in our water filled ditch. He even pointed to Grandad's fishing poles and said "fish." It was definitely time for him to catch a real fish! I was not there, but I understand that he (and Grandad) had a great time. While they went fishing I got to go over to my sister's house to see her nursery and ALL her sweet little baby girl clothes.

Monday, April 5, 2010

More On Hats

Since Josiah brought home my Dad's beat up straw hat, Dad has bought a new hat and Aliza and Josiah got straw hats and binoculars in a box from one of my aunts. So cool! Josiah looks just adorable in the hat!

Josiah and my Dad are buddies. As soon as Josiah walks in the door he looks for Grandad and asks to go look at the lawnmower, then the boat, then the old tractors in the back and then the big dirt pile. Josiah and Grandad walk all around the yard--hand in hand or Josiah walking as fast as he can to catch up. This time when Josiah got to the lawnmower and saw that Grandad had a new hat, he snatched the new hat and gave his little hat to Grandad. Grandad proudly wore the little hat!
Josiah didn't give up that hat while he took a nap. I had to wake him up to go fishing (another post!) and he had not moved from this position.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Glorious Easter

I don't remember an Easter that has been sunny and warm. Today felt like spring. It was a most beautiful day! Our day was packed full of fun Easter day activities that I will spread over a couple blog posts. We had a lovely brunch with our church family and later in the day had an Easter egg hunt. Aliza made sure we did everything "right" including waiting in the hallway while Grandad hid the eggs.