Monday, June 23, 2008

God's Goodness

Jon and I attended a marriage retreat in Branson this weekend. It was led by Travis Plumlee--who is truly a man of God, totally yielded to and led by the Holy Spirit. It was so refreshing and fun and we are so thankful for the things God is continuing to teach us and use to grow us to be more like His Son. We literally got back just few hours ago and went out to my parents house to pick up the kids. Anthony, Gideon and Evie have had a total blast there this weekend. It is so nice that we have a place where they can play and run and really get to experience the country the way Jon and I both did growing up. Anyway--we ate dinner out on my parents' deck and Anthony got done and asked to be excused to go get in a few more minutes of play before we had to leave. My dad joked with me on the phone that the boys were so low maintenance...he has a dirt pile in the yard from some ground work he has been doing, and he told me he gave them two shovels and they have been happy as clams, digging and playing all weekend. Of course Anthony headed right back to the dirt pile where he and Gideon had been just 20-30 minutes before. All of a sudden he let out a yell/scream I have never heard out of him at the same moment that he hurled the shovel he had been hitting on the ground and came running and crying to the deck faster than I have ever seen the child move. The only thing was he was crying but not making any noise--totally freaked out. I thought he had been stung by something and he finally got out that there was a brown snake. Jon and my Dad headed for the dirt pile where Anthony had been and my Dad almost stepped on a copperhead right there on top of that pile of dirt. At this point my dad calls back to me that I should check Anthony to make sure he doesn't have a bite on him and I flipped out. I kept asking him louder and louder if it bit him or just scared him...to the point Jon yelled at me to calm down and quit asking...that he would know if he was bit or not. At this point I start to cry and just have to back away because I don't want Anthony to see me crying and upset. My dad at this point has already chopped the snakes head off (rather forcefully--I told Jon he just was releasing his emotions a different way than me). Anyway--everyone got calmed down and Jon told me he didn't mean to yell etc. I still felt like I was going to throw up...I kept thinking how many times I let the boys out there to play when it is just me out there working, how many times they go crawling up the pile on their hands and knees, sit on it, etc. At this point Jon reminded me that just today as the marriage retreat was ending we spent a considerable amount of time as a group praying, each couple praying for our different individual families and needs and Jon said "we spent time today praying specifically and powerfully for God to protect all three of our children and He just answered our prayer with Anthony!" Ahhhh God, thank you for this man. He is so calm and so quiet sometimes, but so solidly grounded in You and Your truths. Our children are God's. He will always be watching out for them and working His perfect will. Although it would be tempting for me to want to never let my kids out in the country again...that's not going to happen. It's not my parents fault there was a snake...that is just part of the outdoors. There are many dangers out there, we just have to do the best we can to protect our kids and and keep them safe while at the same time trusting God completely. (I'm still learning in that area! I don't know if I'll ever have a snake encounter that doesn't leave me feeling like I want to throw up!!!!!!!!!!!!)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Summer Fun!

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Here's a clip of Gideon batting Tuesday night. Anthony is there on the left getting ready to bat.

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I wasn't sure Anthony was going to get situated before the camera quit recording!





This is Evie's first official fishing trip with her Papa. It was so funny she wouldn't let him help her with her Tigger pole and he knew she had this little fish on it. She kept yelling "I fish!" and waving it around wildly any time anyone tried to help her. Finally we got the fish in and Dad started to hold it up for her for a picture and she said, "I pet!" (She also was petting the worms...it was hilarious--especially since her brothers don't really like to touch the worms!)


Finally, more news on the tadpoles...If you look very close at this picture the one right in the middle has four tiny legs and a tail. Over night his tail was gone and there he is...a frog in the bottom picture. I should have put something in the picture for size comparison...he isn't even as big as my little finger nail! It was amazing that he changed from the first picture to the second in a 24-48 hour period of time! Our friend Arta (who is from Albania and said she had no idea tadpoles are where frogs came from...) ask me if I was supporting Darwin's Theory of Evolution...I told her "Nope--just God's amazing design!!!!!!!!!!!!!" We've had lots of fun with this, but like I said in my last post...Jon is ready to have the amphibians off of the kitchen table!


Sunday, June 1, 2008

Princess Evie and "Princess Daddy"

Doesn't this look fun? Evie and Daddy were playing and she thought he needed a "hat" too. "Hat" is her word for anything that goes on her head. It has been a while since I've had time to post. We have hosted a huge one day yard sale here at our house, made a trip to Oklahoma to visit some of Jon's family, officially finished school and I don't know what else all in the last month. Whewww! We are trying to slow down and settle into a summer routine of sorts. The boys start playing T-Ball this week (Jon is coaching their team) so I will try to get pictures of them on here soon. Let's see there's always lots of exciting things going on around here. Our most recent "project" is raising tadpoles into frogs. (Jon says we could actually put our food on the kitchen table, but we have to fill our plates at the stove because of our "centerpiece") It's just an aquarium full of tadpoles:) I got about 40-50 because I didn't think they would all live, but so far we have not even lost one. We are really enjoying watching them. We have had them for four weeks now, and supposedly it takes 6-8 for the magic to happen...so anytime would be great. All they have done so far is eat, get bigger and make their water dirty. (An interesting side note--we got online to find out what to feed them and they love boiled lettuce. Apparently it has the same proteins or whatever they need that algae has in it.) Like I said, always exciting here. We raised butterflies one time--my sister bought Anthony the butterfly garden with a coupon to send off for the caterpillars. Those caterpillars came, (nearly died because the mailman left them on the mailbox in 90 degree heat) made cocoons, hatched, mated and laid eggs before we got them released When I started to clean out the butterfly garden I realized there were tiny eggs. I kept a bunch, they hatched and we had three 2nd generation butterflies!!!!!!!!!! (I won't tell you how much we spent buying plants for the second group to eat, because they didn't hatch with food!) My sister also bought the boys an ant farm...hey, I'm seeing a pattern--Naomi buys all of these "involved" projects. Just kidding--she and I are just alike--we love this kind of stuff. The tadpoles were all my doing and speaking of tadpoles again...they do need their water changed and that is next on my list. More from the Littlejohn Casa later:)
"Sometimes when we're not even looking we find little treasures."