Friday, December 2, 2016

Friday's Fave Five, 12-2-16

LINK to Friday's Fave Five host blog

1. Last Friday we had a little "shooting party."  (Sounds very 1800s.)  My husband and son have a friend with a shooting range in his back yard in the country, and my son, daughter-in-law, sister, Mike, and I all went to practice.  We all did well and it was a fun thing to do on a beautiful day.
My sister the shooter


Yours truly

I got a "grouping" - apparently that's good even if not on the bulls-eye.

2. I can't say to whom, since it hasn't arrived yet - but this blanket is finally finished and in the mail to a sweet little girl!!

3. Last Monday, Mike and I went to one of our favorite "haunts" for birds.  It was a totally useless trip.  Two great blue herons, and that's ALL we saw.  Plus we saw where a huge chicken farm is being built right where there used to be a large area of woods that was perfect for a lot of wildlife - that's a big disappointment.  And then, we decided to jump on the interstate and go five miles up so we could stop at a Bojangles for Mike to get some biscuits to take to work the next morning.  BIG mistake.  TRAFFIC JAM.  After 30+ minutes, we finally got off at our destination.  The upside to all this:  Since by now we were hungry and hadn't even thought about any supper, we stopped to eat at a nice little Italian place.  And I have leftovers for lunch today.

4. I attended a little party on Tuesday evening for a former colleague who has returned to town.  The circumstances are not happy - her husband passed away very suddenly last summer - but it was very nice to see her and to see how God is keeping her from day to day.  And a number of other friends, acquaintances, and colleagues I had not seen for a long time were also there.  We all enjoyed catching up.

5. And finally:  This pile of fleece, enough for 15 blankets, is cut and ready for a "blanket-making party" Monday after school.  A number of students have said they are coming, even non-Beta Club students (the club is sponsoring this).  We shall see how it turns out!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Pioneer Missions

Pioneer Missionsby Forrest McPhail, a very thoughtful book detailing the difficulties and blessings of missions in places where the Gospel has never been proclaimed to the current generations.

Many things must be done more carefully when planting churches in places where the Gospel is being heard for the first time. A missionary has to be sure he is limiting his preaching and church organization to what is strictly being done in the Bible. Western culture is not Bible truth, and should not be transmitted. And many things such as gifts must be carefully thought through. The author and his fellow workers have decided that any gifts must come strictly from themselves, and not be perceived as coming from the church. Gifts from the church simply cloud the Gospel and cause people to have "conversions" simply for what they can get.

This is a very thoughtful, well-documented book from a thoughtful missionary to Cambodia. At the end of each chapter, he describes both the challenges and blessings of pioneer ministry. I appreciated his well-written analysis very much.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Friday's Fave Five, 11/18/16

 LINK to Friday's Fave Five host blog

Seems like lately most of the posts on this blog have only been FFF.  I guess that is better than none at all!!  

And even right now - I have senior journals, ninth grade poetry projects, and eighth grade book reviews that all came in today.  Poor planning on some teacher's part!!  I want to get it all done by Thanksgiving - so probably ought to be grading instead of doing this.  Once in awhile, though, a teacher needs a break.

1. Our school play last week went very well.  I was backstage every night and this year did not have much to do.  No hems or buttons that needed instant repair, no Christmas trees to move onstage at a brief break, no prompts to the cast.

The picture below is of my son (with makeup and grayed hair!), who helped out this year at the request of our play director.  An older person was needed for one part.  Andrew also opened the play each night, in character, with the usual:  please silence cell phones, take crying children out, etc.  The last night he presented a senior student with a card signed by all the cast and a small gift.  This young man is the only student to have been in all five plays that we have produced at the community theater downtown.  Not only that, but he has a hearing impairment and has to work especially hard to be a part of the play cast.  I thought it was very nice of the cast to honor him in this way.

2. This is small, but so what.  Mike sent a text from work one day this week:  "Great lunch!"  He gets leftovers every day he goes to work, so I was pleased that he was pleased!

3. Frozen lemonade at Chick Fil A - Yesterday was a long day, with not much lunch, and I was meeting my parents at a basketball game (new daughter-in-law is the coach).  I was running errands in that part of town, so stopped and got a frozen lemonade.  You can get it made with diet lemonade, so the calories really aren't that high.  It was the perfect pick-me-up.

4. Change in the newspaper.  I started getting it delivered only three days a week, with the rest of the week on-line.  Much cheaper, and it works fine.  I actually kind of enjoy reading it on line.

5. Sync discovery.  This somewhat electronics-challenged lady bought a song on iTunes this week, on to my school computer--and discovered that it syncs automatically to my iPhone and then, at home, my MacBook Pro.  Same song, three devices.  OK, I'm light-years behind the times, but it's still a fun discovery.  :-)

Happy Thanksgiving week coming up!

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Friday's Fave Five, 11/12/16, (a day late)

LINK to Friday's Fave Five host blog

I'm a day late - helping with the school play has kept me very occupied.  But it's a week worth celebrating.

1. A day out of school.  Well, school wasn't out, but this week is our school play, and I was at the downtown theater where it is held, assisting the director with the dress rehearsal.  My official title is "backstage manager."  What it really means is an authority figure holding things together back there! My son is a friend of our director and is helping also, by playing an older figure in the play that really called for someone more mature than a high schooler.

2. Celebration of son's birthday.  We had an early supper at a restaurant near the theater, since we both had to be there early.  All of us were there, and we met a friend of my daughter's who was able to come briefly.

3. Mike was spreading a little cracked corn in our back yard for his deer friends, when he heard a loud "whoosh-whooshing" overhead. He looked up to see five turkeys flying toward him from the neighbor's trees. They all perched directly above him and looked down as if to say "Please leave so we can eat." He took this shot with his phone. I thought it was a neat shot for something so sudden and unplanned.

4. Caramel apples from my aunt.  :-)  She is so thoughtful!!  She mailed me some delicious caramel apples from a company near her home that makes and ships them in the autumn.  I really, really, enjoyed them!!

5. VERY THANKFUL for the results of the election, which were a huge surprise.  Having no desire to watch the "coronation," I was very tired and went to bed at 8:30.  At 11:30,  I realized that Mike was still up, went out to the den, and could not believe what was happening.  Realizing that some readers of this blog may disagree,  I am nevertheless so thankful that Hillary's agenda was stopped. 

And finally, a funny:  I introduced Shakespeare this week, and told the seniors that he went to London to support his family by writing and acting in plays, because he had to go to the big city if he wanted that kind of work. One girl wrinkled her forehead and then said "Why didn't he just go to Hollywood?"   

Friday, November 11, 2016

A Day Late. . .

Twenty-eight years ago, yesterday now, I was counting fingers and toes.  On a little boy who was born as blue as the shirt he's wearing in the picture below.  (I will spare the reader the details.)  He was a 2 on his first Apgar reading, but back up to 10 on the second.  

He never slept for long as a baby because he was afraid he would miss something.  Even as a newborn, the slightest sound would make that little head crane upward, wanting to know what was going on.  He hasn't changed in that.  :-)

He is helping out our school play director this weekend, playing a small part that really requires someone who looks and acts older than a high school student.  I appreciate his willingness to do something like that when it would be easy to decline.  He has a great spirit and desire to do what he can to help.  He loves God.

I don't have any of his wedding pics on this computer.  But that changed his life dramatically as well, of course.

So happy 28th birthday, Andrew - even if it's a day late.

Senior recital in college

High school graduation

Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday's Fave Five, 10/28/16

LINK to Friday's Fave Five Host Blog

1. I have a new camera this year and am going to attempt to improve efforts at bird photography.  Here are last week's attempts.  This is the best picture of the two (after a lot of deletes).  It's a tufted titmouse.

This one is a tad blurry (those little things move really, really fast), but I love it because it shows a red-breasted nuthatch with the seed in its mouth.  We have not had any of those since 2012.  I'm hoping that this is the season that we will have all three of the types of nuthatch at our feeders.  Two so far.

2. Mike just fixed the lamp next to my chair that flickered constantly.  A big thank you.

3. I had a lovely interview with a former student yesterday.  She was to interview a veteran teacher for her Intro. to Ed. class, then write a paper based on what the teacher said.  It was a pleasure to pass the baton a little bit.

4. I finally got some black dress shoes that fit right.  One store: Great shoes, too big.  Another store:  Similar style, one-half size smaller, too small.  eBay: The first shoes, more expensive, half-size smaller, still slightly big, but wearable.  I'll keep them.

5. And finally - The Cubs have made it to the World Series!!  Go, Cubs, Go!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

"Long Stairway"

From Macarthur's Romans 1-8 commentary, p. 348:

"After a businessmen's luncheon at which I spoke, a man said to me, 'I've been in this group for a long time, and I'll tell you how I think you can get to God.  You see, there is this long stairway, and at the top there is a door and behind it is this guy Jesus.  What you really want to do is try to make it up the stairs and get through the door and then hope Jesus lets you in.  As you're on your way up the stairs, you've got all these preachers and movements cheering you on, but you just continue going up the stairs your own way.  I call it the stairway of hope.  That's what I think the gospel is.'

"With a heavy heart I replied, 'Sir,you cannot be a Christian.  What you said has nothing to do with the gospel, and your stairway to heaven is hopeless.  You need to depend on Jesus Christ alone for your salvation.  You have no idea of what it means to be saved, and you cannot be on your way to heaven.'

"A person cannot invent his own way to God, no matter how sincere his efforts might be.  God has established the only way to come to Him, and that is the way of faith in His Son, Jesus Christ.  And saving faith in Jesus Christ is built on God's revelation about Him, not on men's ideas about Him.  There is divinely-revealed content to the gospel, and the person who rejects or circumvents that content gives unmistakeable evidence that he is not truly seeking God's kingdom and His righteousness."

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Every Sunday Morning

It's 8:15 a.m. on Sunday morning, and I just heard my neighbor start his truck and pull down his driveway.

We've lived in this house for two months shy of 16 years, and every single Sunday morning, unless he and his wife are out of town, I have heard him start his truck and leave his house at 8:15.  Every single Sunday morning.  You could set your clock by it.

He is an usher at his church, and he has to go early to get things set up before Sunday school and church.  And he participates in an early morning men's prayer meeting each week.

I think that that kind of faithfulness is a great testimony all by itself.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Friday's Fave Five 10/14/16

LINK to Friday's Fave Five host blog

1. Husband is a happy man - he got a 150-lb., 8-point buck on the opening morning of deer season.  Plus he's been seeing some deer in our back yard.  That really makes him a happy man.

2. A really fun day in sophomore English.  (I've got pictures, but am not supposed to post pics of identifiable students on personal social media.)  We finished Julius Caesar and celebrated with a lunch on the stage of our cafetorium.  We ate Little Caesar's pizza, Caesar salad, and Italian creme cake, and drank grape juice.  They all brought sheets that they made into "togas" for the occasion.  And most of this was their idea!!  Very creative class.

3. A new flower bed out by the road.  Mike pulled out an old plant that hasn't done well for years, moved rocks, added railroad ties, soil, and mulch, and bought and planted pansies.  When he takes on a project - he does it right. 

4. We went to see Sully last Saturday.  Good movie.  The NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) is portrayed as being heavy handed, but nevertheless, it is a feel-good movie that has very little in the way of objectionable elements.  A couple of words here and there, but not much.  We had an enjoyable afternoon.

5. Son is OK after being bucked off a horse last Sunday.  It could have been really bad, but after one uncomfortable night he is doing fine.  He may have a slightly cracked rib, but there is nothing that can be done for that anyway.  We're glad it was not worse.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016


It's a new week.  It's easy to wonder - what will this week bring?

So far - it's brought one of those "Mom, I don't want to worry you, but..." phone calls.  Turns out son got himself bucked off of a horse.  Fortunately he feels much better today.

This morning brought this announcement on the intercom.  Part of the morning devotional said "God has given us immortality". . . but the girl who read it said - you guessed it - "God has given us immorality."

Later in the day, I was teaching another class, when I got off track and wandered so far away that I couldn't figure out what the purpose of the tangent was.  (Maybe there was no purpose...)  Whereupon a young man known for his wit says "Don't worry, we'll see that we get you into an Alzheimer's unit somewhere with good ventilation."