Monday, June 28, 2010

more than enough

1 Corinthians 1:4-18   
I always thank God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus. For in him you have been enriched in every way—in all your speaking and in all your knowledge— because our testimony about Christ was confirmed in you. Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.
I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought. My brothers, some from Chloe's household have informed me that there are quarrels among you. What I mean is this: One of you says, "I follow Paul"; another, "I follow Apollos"; another, "I follow Cephas"; still another, "I follow Christ."

Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized into the name of Paul? I am thankful that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, so no one can say that you were baptized into my name. (Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don't remember if I baptized anyone else.) For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 
Who defines me...or sadly enough, what defines me? When people look at me...who or what do they see? In looking for an identity, titles emerge. They give us a name, a goal, a direction, a whatever that helps us play a role in life.
In becoming a believer and follower of His Son, Jesus Christ, God gave me an identity: Christian.
I need no other title to know who I am and what I believe.
Jesus is more than enough.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Road Trip Finale

Day 8:  Thursday, June 10th
Hunted dinosaurs this morning.  The museum was very interesting...incorporating speculations of the past with what has been found in the present, then using both to make predictions for the future.  I read their info...I just don't always agree with it.  The museum had hands on things for us to do..."digging" for bones, finding hidden objects, figuring out clues to answer questions...and many things of interest to see...fossils of all shapes and sizes of differnt insects, animals and plants, Native American clothing, weapons, and beadwork, animals one will find in Utah, and so much info on dinosaurs.   One of the funniest things was when Alex started striking the same poses as the dinosaurs.  It was hilarious!  He did a great job at copying them.  Tim got some dinosaurs in the giftshop and so the next part of the roadtrip we were listening to dinosaurs interact with Toy Story characters.  His imagination never ceases to amaze me. :)
We drove through Flaming Gorge, UT on our way to our next KOA in Douglas, WY.  You first caught a glimpse of the reservoir from the roadside overlooking it.  As you drove down by it and over the dam, the views and reality of how big the dam actually was set in.  A storm was coming in and the sky took on a new look which added another dimension to the beauty of it all. 
Driving through WY again and seeing more structures that deal with the drifting snow of winter reminded me that I am perfectly content in a warm weather climate.  It would take a special calling in life to live out there, I think.  Not many cities along our route...glad our motorhome kept on moving!
As we drove, or rather as I drove the camper, into Douglas KOA the sun popped out in the midst of a rain shower.  Alas, a rainbow!  A bright, huge rainbow appeared right before my eyes.  God's promises are "Yes!" and "Amen!" (2 Cor. 1:20)  I always think of this when I see a rainbow.
When the rain subsided, the boys and I took a walk and were getting ready to play putt-putt golf.  Alex walks over to a boot yard decoration and finds a rock with KOA painted on it.  Finding that odd, but not knowing what it was about, I told him to put it back where he found it.  We then headed inside for the golf clubs and balls.  I noticed a sign on the window about finding KOA rocks and getting a free prize of whatever is painted on the other side.  Alex ran back for his rock and it had a fee putt-putt game on it.  We took it inside and the lady said there's more rocks if Tim wanted to find one too.  We found his in a flower pot in the putt-putt area.  How fun!  Despite being cold and damp, the night turned out to be a very relaxing one for us all.  Next stop we return to South Dakota.
Day 9:  Friday, June 11th
Today was a full day of driving and sightseeing.  We stopped at Jewel Cave Nat'l Park, but didn't take the tour since it would have been an hour before one left.  We walked around outside and visited the welcome center.  Looks like a very cool cave.
Our next stop wasn't a planned one, but I'm so glad we took advantage of visiting the Crazy Horse Monument. Amazingly enough, although cold and windy, the rain held off while we were outside taking picutres. I am intrigued by Native American history...their lifestyle, their ways, their survival. I am saddened by their stories most times, too. The Crazy Horse monument is going to be huge when it's finally finished...that will be years from now, however. They showed us that Mt. Rushmore fits well into just Crazy Horse's head...that's just incredible. They have a very nice museum there and have plans for alot of things to be built on the grounds surrounding the monument. Maybe we'll go back one day and see the progress...only time will tell.

Next stop was Deerfield Dam, where Grandpa Miller worked 67 years ago.  He was in South Dakota from fall of 1942 to the spring of 1943.  There's now a memorial stone that tells who built it and when...it was part of Grandpa's W2 service.  Pretty amazing that we were able to get back there and take pics for him to see after all these years.  When we got to Dutchman Road that leads to the dam, it was blocked off to traffic so the final mile was on foot.  Thankfully there was a gravel road to walk along which made the walk rather a nice one.  It was so quiet back there...made me even more aware of the beauty of it all.  We had almost turned back due to coldness and Alex's weariness, but we gave it one more corner and, sure enough, that was just the corner where we saw the dam.  So glad we persevered!  Hiking back took no time at all...funny how that always seems to be true.  A matter of perspective, I guess.
Loading up again, we stopped in Hill City to pick up some steaks to grill for dinner and then hit the road again.  On to the highlight of Alex's trip.....Mt. Rushmore!  He was so excited to be going to see it for himself.  He kept exclaming "I got to see Mt. Rushmore and I'm only 7 and a half!"  Quite young compared to me, who's seeing it for the first time, too. :)  The weather held up nicely for us while we were here, too.  God is good to have let us enjoy these sights without rain falling on our heads!
We drove on to Interior, SD...rained off and on, but we were able to get our steaks grilled and Tim especially loved that!  Only one more day of sightseeing in the Badlands and our trip will be wrapped up!


Day 9:  Saturday, June 12th
Awoke and prepared for our last day of vacation...outside of the airport anyway.  Plans were to drive through part of Badlands Nat'l Park this day...everything went accordingly.  At the visitor center, the boys did a packet of activities to earn their Jr. Ranger badges.  That was fun and so cute to see them saying their pledges to get their badges.  I had left my camera out in the camper, so unfortunately no pics, but I'll have that memory for awhile (I hope so anyway!)  Heading in, I really thought that my moments of amazement over piles and peaks of rocks had to be at its max...but I was wrong.  It was beautiful, and once more, before I could even think about stopping myself, "Wow!" escaped from my lips again and again.  Along with the beauty of it all, when you add the thought of people traveling West way back when on horseback and in wagons, it's surprising they even attempted to cross these badlands and move further westward.  They were true pioneers!  Our fun was going out and climbing around on the rocks with no chance of getting hot or sunburned while doing so.  The boys again took to climbing the rocks like they had been doing it for years.  Praise God no one ever got hurt on our adventures!
On the road to our final destination, Rapid City, where we first began our RV travels, we stopped by Wall Drug in Wall, SD.  This is the most advertised place in all of SD.  It's a collection of shops and cafes just to draw you in to spend money, but how can you skip such a place that tries so hard to lure you in.  Mind you, the freshly baked cake doughnut I ate was worth the stop!  Yummy!  They have a kids play area called the "Backyard" and Tim rode a giant jackalope.  That was funny.  We spent just about an hour browsing around and then off to dinner at Sanford's and then to our KOA, coming full circle to where it all began.  Sanford's was a great restaurant.  Alex ordered the "Big Dawg" off the kids menu and hoped it was going to be big!  Big doesn't begin to describe it...gigantic or humongous, may be a better start.  He attacked it with all he had in him, but still had about half left when he was finished.  A fun way to end our driving journey, indeed. 
Back at the campground, it was time to pack...mixed feelings about it.  Blessed to have been on the trip and know there's more world out there to explore, but really looking forward to going home for awhile...especially to sleep in my own bed and be warm again.  Bring on HOTlanta!
Day 10:  Sunday, June 13th
Airport day!  Flights didn't look good to return to Minneapolis coming in to today and they proved to be correct.  And, if by some chance we had made it to MN, we most likely would not have made it out to Atlanta from there until Monday night last flight out.  After trying several flights to MN, we switched to Salt Lake City.  We made it on the 6 something flight...I liked just being in a new surrounding.  At least there were more people around to keep you company and the sun was shining.  In fact, there was a beautiful sunset and I had a perfect view of it, even if I was inside.  It was one of those sunsets that gets better and better as the sun disappears.  We stayed at the airport trying for a 1 AM flight to Atlanta...Doug, my father-in-law, got the last seat on that flight.  Off to a hotel for a few hours sleep...won't be making it to the 1st day of VBS after all.  
Day 11:  Monday, June 14th
Airport day - take 2!  Decision time.  I approached the ticket counter with the boys and my tickets...her first words were that it didn't look good for a direct flight to Atlanta and that, after a couple of minutes of checking, we needed to fly to Los Angeles to get on the 11:35 flight to Atlanta from there.  Every ounce of my being knew instantly that we were headed even further West to go East and I felt good about it.  Scott said he was staying in SLC and that we probably should too, but it was up to me.  I went with my first thought and had seat requests for 3 for the 8:35 flight to LA printed out to get us through security.  Saying goodbye at the concourse division, off we went to fly to Atlanta one way or another.  
Good news on the first flight...made it to LA without a problem.  Let me just say that LAX is a crazy place...chaotic and unorganized, but the people were nice amid the unorganized chaos.  A huge thanks to the lady with the cart that gave us a ride to our concourse...you were a blessing!  I was so hoping to get seats on this flight, but I knew there were at least two other flights with open seats in the afternoon if need be.  I felt good about my decision, but when our names were called I felt great about my decision.  And, for the first time the entire trip we were back on a real Delta flight...gate attendants that knew what a buddy pass was and how they worked, a huge plane, individual tv screens, roomy seats...the list could go on and on....but, best of all, the plane was headed to Atlanta!!!  I ♥ LA for getting me home.  
What a wonderful trip!  Thank you, God, for Your handiwork and grace!      
     

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Road Trip 4

Day 6:  Tuesday, June 8th
Alex is making plans already for when we get home...he always looks ahead.  Tim's looking forward to home, too...the new Toy Story 3 movie comes out soon.  He's so excited about it!  They have been so wonderful on this trip and I am proud of them for it.
The boys played with their new friends camping beside us this morning.  When the neighbors left to go bike riding, the boys and Grandpa Roth went to the lake for some swim time.  They played on the playground before heading back, too.  Funny thing happened, as the boys and Grandpa were walking back up to the camper, the kids next door got back from their bike ride.  Great timing!  They played for about an hour or so before it was time for us to head out for our next adventure.  The boys were sad, but they didn't know our next adventure was just down at the lake...jet ski time!  Alex's eyes got so big with excitement when we told him what we were doing.  Tim's sadness went away quickly, too!  We rented a jet ski and took turns driving the boys around the lake.  We all had such fun out on the water.  It was a quiet morning on the water...we basically had it all to ourselves, which was perfect!
Our next destination is Vernal, UT in the heart of dinosaurland.  There is actually a city called Dinosaur in Utah.  We ate at a wonderful Italian restaurant for lunch there on our way through to Vernal.  The KOA we are staying at is actually called KOA Dinosaurland.  They have a T-Rex statue in town and someone decorates it for every season or special occasion.  Driving by today, he was dressed up in a cap and gown for graduation.  The campground host gave the boys both a dinosaur hunting license...and a paper they can keep track of which dinosaurs they see around town and in the museum.  Tomorrow is going to be a very busy day of white water rafting through Dinosaur National Park on the Green River.  Can't wait!
Day 7:  Wednesday, June 9th
We got up and went right over to go rafting this morning.  The day included a short hike up to a place where there were petroglyphs carved into the rock on the way to the place where we to put in.  That was pretty cool to be able to see...having left my camera back at the camper, there are no pics of them.   
A short 10 minute drive up the road, and we were at the river.  It was a perfect day for rafting...warm and sunny with some intermittent clouds.  It was a perfect day for mosquitoes, too.  They swarmed us as we were getting ready to board the raft.  They put Alaska's mosquitoes to shame...yes, indeed, they were that bad!  In our raft, were our family of 4, a couple from FL and the guide.  The boys were so excited they got to help row and everything.  The roughest rapids were at the beginning of the trip.  The water was high due to the snow pack melting, we moved quickly downstream.  The canyon was just absolutely beautiful to view from the raft.  We all loved it...the boys were looking out for the rapids and were quick to laugh and ride them out like pros.  Starting out, they would hop to the center of the raft and just ride through the rapids...toward the end they stayed on the raft's edge and made it clear they were having the best time, hoping for rougher water.  The man told us along the way that when his wife saw our boys were going rafting, she finally agreed to come.  She didn't want to be shown up by little kids and said she was glad she came in the end.  We had lunch along the river's edge and then proceeded onward to the take out spot.  Having the swift, high water we were able to get out at a spot and hike to a cave right across from the take out point.  The boys were getting tired, but they hiked up the hill to the cave anyway like true sports.  It was a nice way to end the trip.  We could see the motorhome from the rock's ledge in front of the cave.  Scott's dad didn't go rafting with us, so he drove to pick us up there.  It was great day on the river.
We returned to our KOA and went swimming for awhile then tried to go to the dinosaur museum but it was closing.  We opted for a drive and found a reservoir not too far from town.  There was a pull off spot that allowed you to look down over the lake.  The boys and Scott did some hiking down to the water's edge, but Doug and I stayed up at the top.  We made it back to camp with enough daylight to play on the playground, swim again, and enjoy the sunset.  We watched a lightning storm in the distance once it got dark.  That was awesome!       

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Road Trip 3

Day 5: Monday, June 7th
Yay!  I finally slept past 5 am...must have been because it was finally warm enough to sleep comfortably.  I like to be warm.  Moab is warm.  I like Moab. :)  Had some leftover pancakes for breakfast and they were yummy!  I've got to work on my pancakes at home...everyone else's just always taste better than mine.  That's why I like to make french toast.  Anyway, everyone went to play putt-putt golf (Alex loves that KOA's have golf courses) and left me to myself.  Living 3 adults and 2 boys in a 31 ft. motorhome, I didn't mind some alone time.
Once back from golfing, we packed up and headed out for Arches Nat'l Park again.  Morning sunlight brings out a different glow to the rocks.  There were alot of people out and about in the park today.  You drive through the park and they have pull offs along the way so you can take pictures, get out and hike/climb, or just stand and enjoy the view of God's handiwork.  Some paths require off road vehicles...needless to say that will have to be another time, another adventure in Moab.  Our adventure of the day was climbing around on the "Double Arch".  Walking to it, I was kind of thinking we were crazy due to the heat, but once at the rocks it was surprisingly cooler.  Through the back arch, there was a nice breeze blowing on you as you stood in the shade of the front arch and the rock walls surrounding it.  The boys just took off and had a blast climbing higher and higher.  I, having nothing to prove to anyone or myself, just enjoyed climbing on the lower levels...and let me tell you they aren't exactly low to the ground.  I love heights, however, I do not enjoy the thought or the sensation of falling on any level.  We climbed around for quite awhile before the call of the road beckoned to us to get moving again.
Continuing through the park, I couldn't help but sing of God's majesty...if I hadn't the rocks would have...
When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:
"Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!"
"Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" 
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples!"
"I tell you," he replied, "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out."    Luke 19:37-40
As if Arches wasn't enough, our next destination was Canyonlands Nat'l Park, just a bit up the road.  Unbelieveable!  Pictures do not do the canyons justice.  Their height, their depth is astounding.  Maybe crazy for doing both parks in one day, but we were there and it was about making the most of the time we had.  Most of the park that we explored didn't require a massive amount of hiking...the Green River overview was even wheelchair accessible, but when Scott and I headed up to "Upheaval Dome", it was a nice hike.  Nothing out there but us a few lizards.  The view from the rim of the Dome was a "Wow!" moment...one among many in my life now.  It was as if we were up above looking down at mountains in a hole.  Crazy.  
Pulling into Moab yesterday my Bible time was spent in Psalm 8...so fitting to Moab and the beauty it displays. God is so good!  A return trip to Moab would be okay with me...I was never cold in Moab.                                                               We left Moab with Dinosaur Nat'l Park as our next destination.  We decided to stay at Highline Lake State Park in Loma, CO, for the night.  It was a nice change from the KOA's for all of us.  In the sites next to us were two families tent camping with their kids...3 boys around Tim and Alex's age and 4 yr old Lexi.  Such fun they all had together.  We were able to have a campfire for the first time on our journey.  I browned some brats over the fire for dinner and just as we sat down to eat, it started to rain.  The rain shower ended about as quickly as it began and we were all out by the fire again.  The boys were hoping we were staying for more than one night since they were having such fun. They played with their new friends until bedtime...even played tag using flashlights.  A very good day!

Road Trip 2

Day 3:  Saturday, June 5th
I keep waking up early local times, like 5 AM early.  Always wonder why I wake up early on my own while on vacations...must not want to miss anything.  Had plenty of time to get the boys ready to go to a medical clinic that was open on Saturdays in Estes Park.  We were seen first @ 9 and by 10 we were back in the motor home with the good news that it wasn't strep.  Of course that means it is viral and they have to just let it run its course, but the worst should be behind them already.  It makes me feel better knowing...time to move on to bigger and better things to think about on our trip. 
For this night, we found a campsite at Good Sam's which was close by Rocky Mtn. Nat'l Park and in Estes Park.  Quaint little campgrounds with a fishing lake, a river running through it, a pool to enjoy, and a snow capped mountain view right outside my door.  Having made the reservation while the boys and I were at the Dr.'s office, when we were picked up we headed out for breakfast and on our way to explore the Rockies.
I have been to Estes Park before, but the mountains were still as captivating as before...still rocky, still snow capped, but still beautiful nonetheless. :)  The favorite thing for me was hiking to Alberta Falls.  There was so much water from the melting snow and recent rains that the falls were incredible to see and hear.  The roar of the water was so loud you had to raise you voice so people beside you could hear you.  Climbed around on the rocks, experienced some great views around us, and played in some snow still on the ground along the way.  The cutest thing was this chipmunk munching away on some nut perched on a rock beside the falls.  So cute!  He wasn't very afraid of people, either, so it was a joy to get such a close up shot of him without scaring him away. (photo of chipmunk in "summer's beauty" blogpost)
Probably didn't do as much as we might have if the boys would have been feeling better, but we made the most of the time we spent in the mountains.  Once back at camp, we went swimming all the while being able to see snow... that was just so crazy!  Lots of people were fishing and having fun by the lake which was fun to watch.  We walked to dinner at a restaurant across the river.  There was some excitement throughout the evening as the river started to rise and flood its banks.  People monitored it throughout the nighttime hours in case people needed to evacuate their sites by the river's edge. 
A fun filled day ended with no fevers, full stomachs, lots of good memories and thoughts of what will come with tomorrow.
Day 4:  Sunday, June 6th
Awoke at 5AM again.  Maybe tomorrow I will sleep later...maybe.  We hit the road running about 7 AM and headed for Moab, UT.  Good news of the day was that the boys awoke with no fevers!  Praise God for His healing.  Minor sore throats still, but they are on the road to recovery.  I fixed scrambled eggs and sausage in the camper for breakfast...first meal I cooked on that little stove and all went well. 
Boys have been playing up in the loft all morning.  It's so good to hear them playing and acting more like themselves...so sweet!  One thing we are enjoying as we drive is playing Dominoes together.  They really love that and Slap Jack.  I can only play so many games of that in a row, though. :) 
We made a stop at a pull off titled "The Summit".  Majestic view of several mountain peaks with a lake below just on the outskirts of Frisco, CO.  Another breathtaking area was Glenwood Canyon, CO...driving through was just awe inspiring...I found myself saying "Wow!" numerous times on the way through the canyon.  Made a stop in the canyon and watched as some put in to go rafting down the river.  We saw some great rapids that they would encounter once we were back on the road.  Made me want to take a ride on the wild side myself...maybe another day. :)  Read about Glenwood Canyon here... http://www.mesalek.com/colo/glenwood/index.html
When we arrived in Moab, it was 100 degrees by the pool...102 by the time we left the pool just an hour later.  We left to go see what there was to see before darkness set in.  We played down near the Colorado River and chased after lizards chillin on the rocks.  We drove a little ways into Arches Nat'l Park...the rocks were so red as the sun set lower in the sky.  Absolutely a sight to see.  Needing gas in the RV and food in our stomachs, we headed back.  After dinner, I did some laundry and enjoyed the warm breeze under a star filled sky.  On a trip back to the camper from the laundry room, I saw a falling star...it was so beautiful!  It has been a long time since seeing that many stars fill the sky.  It will be one of my favorite memories of the trip.   

Friday, June 18, 2010

Road Trip


Beginning in Rapid City, SD, (after a connecting flight in Minneapolis, MN from Atlanta) we headed out in a motor home in a loop covering over two thousand miles through South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah.  Visiting several national monuments and other places that caught our attention along the way and staying at KOA's to rest,  it has been a trip to remember. 



Day 1: Thursday, June 3rd
Today we left for our journey West.  Awoke @4am to leave for Rapid City, SD via Minneapolis, MN.  Got out on the 2nd flight (flying standby, of course, is always a gamble) and were thankful for it!  A different story in Minneapolis, however, for we were basically there from 10 am to 10 pm. A very long day!  Alex and Tim both weren't feeling well.  Tim had a fever and slept most of the day with the exception of moving from end to end of Minneapolis' airport to change concourses no less than 4 times.  The airport there is rather large and you have to walk everywhere...a tram takes you from concourse A to D (I think) but all the others require walking.  It was unusual to be flying the former Northwest flights...made me appreciate real Delta flights all the more.  A lot of kinks they need to work out yet, especially on bringing the staff up to speed on how Delta runs things.  The boys handled themselves marvelously through all the hours of waiting, especially considering that they didn't feel well.  Many grandmas and grandpas complimented them on behaving so well. Scott got on an afternoon flight (still not sure how that worked out) so he was able to go ahead of us an pick up the RV and get the shopping done for our trip before the rest of us got there.  That was a blessing, since the rest of us didn't land until after 10 pm.  We stayed at the Rapid City KOA.  The campground there was very nice...and close to the airport, which came in handy.  It was so nice to fall asleep somewhere other than in an airport chair! :)
Day 2: Friday, June 4th
We woke up and enjoyed a leisurely morning at the KOA...the boys were feeling okay in spite of awaking with fevers and extremely sore throats.  Before breakfast, they played checkers outside on this huge board made of different colored pavers.  They had a lot of fun doing this.  I think one of the boys wanted us to make one in our yard when we got home.  A nice thing about KOA's is that they make pancakes for breakfast every morning (some of them are just weekends).  All you can eat pancakes for $3...not a bad deal really.  Once everyone got ready and ate breakfast we headed out for Estes Park, CO.  That was going to be our final stop along our way, but the weather forcast was so bad for SD, we decided to reverse our route and begin in CO and end in SD.  
One of our destinations was on the way, so we went and toured Wind Cave Nat'l Park.  It was a nice break on a long car ride.  The history of the cave in very interesting...the points of interest about the cave are as well...but I've been inside (shall I say) "prettier" caves.  A good stop.  You can read more about Wind Cave here:  http://www.nps.gov/wica/historyculture/learning-about-the-park.htm
Aside from the boys both having fevers the entire way, the day's journey went well.  They both slept alot and were very lethargic when they were awake...not like them to be that quiet.  Was able to add a new state to places I've visited along the way...Wyoming.  I had never been to Wyoming before this day.  From the way it looked we must have stopped at the only gas station for many, many miles...alot of miles go by inbetween glimpses of civilization out there it seems.  We pulled into Estes Park's KOA around 9 pm their time.  We had gained another hour, so we were off Eastern time by 2 hrs now.  Very hard to figure out which time zone we were in at times...and I'm still a little off today even after being home 4 days.       

Monday, June 7, 2010

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"Imaginaaaaaaation!"

The other day, Tim comes walking out of the kitchen holding the little yellow sponge that came with my flattop stove.  He asked me if he could "use" this for something.  Surprising myself, I knew exactly where he was going with this question...I guess it was the gleam in his eye as he spoke.  Before answering him, I asked him a question.  "By using, do you mean pretending it's SpongeBob?"  He smiled and answered affirmatively.  I told him to wait until we went to the store and I'd buy him a yellow sponge to make a SpongeBob out of it.
Well, yesterday was the day.  I had to buy a package of six sponges to get one yellow one.  Not even giving it a second thought, I gave Tim the package once we got home.  His eyes immediately lit up and he was so excited that there was a pink sponge in the pack, too.  The pink sponge was going to become Patrick...now, why didn't I think of that??? 
Last night, the sponges came to life.  Tim proceeded to use all six sponges in the package...two became a road, on one he drew Patrick's rock, and the last one became SpongeBob's pineapple house.  My little man does know how to use his "imaginaaaaaation".  (That comes from what happens to be a very funny episode of SpongeBob...don't ask me how I know that).  ☺   

celebration

I had a wonderful birthday this year!  Now, really, I can't remember a "bad" birthday...how could a day all about me ever be a bad one? :)  So wonderful that I was too tired to write this post on Monday night from all the fun we had throughout the day.  The weather changed my original plans for the day, but it turned out perfect in spite of that.
My day began with getting to sleep in until 8...that's pretty late and pretty rare for me these days.  Then I was treated to breakfast at IHOP by the family.  The rest of the day was spent leisurely shopping, preparing for vacation, and having fun together in the pool.  
My day ended with a bang....fireworks in the backyard.  This just may have to become a birthday tradition.     
God has blessed my life with great people...some family, some friends, and some both family and friends...who have wished me "Happy Birthday" this year.  Thank you!!!  My life wouldn't be the same without you in it.