Sunday, January 30, 2011

Music Review: GodRocks! Bibletoons

I have heard repeatedly how important it is to start early hiding God's Word in a child's heart. So I have recently been doing some research with some 'acclaimed child development experts' (a.k.a. other experienced moms!) and hopefully will be able to continue planting seeds of Truth in our little guy.

Since Alexander loves music, especially anything with a BEAT and RHYTHM, I was thrilled to discover a set of four GodRocks! Bibletoon CDs (Children of God, Trust and Hope in the Lord, Believe and Obey God's Son and Be Strong and Grow in the Lord). All are currently available to order at the God Rocks! Online Store for $7.99 each OR you can purchase the entire 8-volume Collectors Set for $49.99. NOTE: I was actually able to purchase these CDs from for a fraction of the cost (new, sealed in package) so you might want to begin your search there, if interested.

These CDs combine oldies-style music with Scripture memorization and honestly, they are cool, catchy & contagious (so beware!)
Also, if you have any recommendations for helping kids learn Scripture, please pass along your recommendation(s) in the Comments and we can all learn together!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Book Review: Acts of Faith Series

I just finished reading the Acts of Faith Series by Davis Bunn and Janette Oke which includes:

Book One: The Centurion's Wife
Book Two: The Hidden Flame
Book Three: The Damascus Way

This book collaboration is a saga of the dramatic events surrounding the birth of Christianity. Historical fiction at its best with a combination of FACT - the politics present at/after the cruxifiction of Jesus, the Judean culture & climate, the harshness of Roman rule (and rulers), the divide between the Sanhedrian and followers of the Way. And FICTION -- the storyline of its characters interwoven with individuals mentioned in the Word such as Pontius Pilate, Mary&Martha, Stephen, the Ethiopian ruler, Saul of Tarsus and the earliest miracles peformed by the disciples.

I am not a Bible scholar. In fact, I am routinely grateful for the simplicity of faith required to be a follower of Christ. But, I found this series to do an exceptional job of illustrating the political climate, the danger to early followers of the Way, the culture of cities such as Jerusalem, Caesarea, Joppa, and it brought to light what life might have been like in the early days after Jesus' death.
A recommended read for these wintry nights.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Were It Not For Grace

This morning when Blake's alarm went off the following song was playing on the radio. As I rolled over and pulled the covers higher, the lyrics trickled into my half-awake mind.

Time measured out my days. Life carried me along
In my soul I yearned to follow God. But knew I'd never be so strong
I looked hard at this world. To learn how heaven could be gained
Just to end where I began. Where human effort is all in vain

Were it not for grace I can tell you where I'd be
Wandering down some pointless road to nowhere,
With my salvation up to me
I know how that would go.The battles I would face
Forever running but losing this race.Were it not for grace

So here is all my praise. Expressed with all my heart
Offered to the Friend who took my place. And ran a course I could not start
And when He saw in full. Just how much this would cost
He still went the final mile between me and heaven. So I would not be lost
Forever running but losing this race. Were it not for grace

My emotions have been ragged the past few days. Tears just below the surface.

Not totally certain as to why. Perhaps too much cold? Too much winter? Too much sniffling, sneezing & coughing? A bittersweet phone call? A discouraging email? A book which planted questions? Too much time to think? To wonder? To find faults within myself?

To be honest, I have been feeling like I am losing the race. Maybe not completely losing but falling way back in the pack.
Mis-spoken words.
Mis-aligned priorities.
Focusing on the un-important.
Neglecting what is important; what is good & right.

This morning, I recognized the beginning of despair, of discouragement taking over my Spirit. And then...the song.
"WERE IT NOT FOR GRACE. Wandering down some pointless road to nowhere with my salvation up to me...He still went the final mile between me and heaven; so I would not be lost."
As they have so often during past doubts/fears, (my) emotions intersected Truth (reality).
My salvation is NOT up to me and I am NOT lost.
Grace is present. Grace is abundant. Grace is sufficient.
(2 Corinthians 12:9) "But he said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."

Where would I be. WERE IT NOT FOR GRACE?

Monday, January 24, 2011


Alexander has a cold.
It came on out of nowhere and has turned him into a coughing, slobbering, sniffling little monster.
He announced yesterday in church, "I am feeling miserable (miss-a-bull)."

Last night while putting on his pajamas I explained that if he has trouble breathing or he is hurting it is okay if he (a) call for me to come to his room or (b) talk it over with Mr. Monkey. Option(b) was my attempt to keep from getting summoned every five minutes for minor discomforts :)

With a serious expression, my little guy said to me, "Momma. I don't know what my plan is right now."

Crack me up!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Deal-A-Day: Living Social

Since I am no longer working professionally, allowing me the ability to contribute to our family financially, throughout the past 2+ years I have considered finding ways to stretch our current funds/budget to be my part-time job. It has been challenging and surprisingly, quite rewarding.

For some time now, Blake has encouraged me to share some of these money-saving deals on this blog with all of you. So, you might notice some additional posts of this sort.

I thought today's deal on Living Social was worth mentioning considering it offers a 50% discount off any purchase at (purchase a $20 gift card for only $10). NOTE: These deals sometimes sell out really fast so hurry, if interested!

WARNING: Deal a day sites can actually be bad for your budget. They’re all about buying on impulse. They create a sense of don’t-miss-out urgency that’s hard to resist. Take a few deep breaths before you buy and ask yourself: Can actually use the item? If not, it’s not a bargain at all. Considering we purchase items from almost monthly, this is a GOOD deal for us.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Babysitter DropOff...

A peek into our conversation while walking to the door of the babysitters this weekend.

X: Momma? Are you leaving me?
ME: Yes.
X: Momma? Are you coming back?
ME: Yes, of course.
X: No! Please don't come back! you too, buddy! :) :)

Monday, January 3, 2011

More Christmas...

This past New Years weekend we celebrated the holidays with Blake's family. Coming from four different states -- Tennessee, Wisconsin, Indiana and Illinois -- the cousins see each only a couple times a year. Laughter, shouts (mostly of glee), giggling, tackling, etc. filled the days together. It was a fun, fun time!

The littlest kids 'descended' upon the tree, sitting as CLOSE as possible,
so anxious for a gift with their name...
little Jared singing Christmas carols...SO sweet!
the littlest family member...1-year old, Savannah Rose
these 2-year olds are totally in the 'tackling/wrestling' phase... i can almost hear the giggles...