Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A Month of Mondays

It's a been exciting around here, can't you tell?


I'll tell you what it has been. Sick.

Sick as in ill, not as "That's sick!" meaning awesome, cool, what have you.

It's been Bill, all the kids but mostly Ben and also Lucy.

Various forms- achy body, upset tummies, fevers, vomiting, the runs, light-headedness, infected hangnails and limping. We've had lots of limping.

And it has all happened on Mondays for the most part. And you know when it happens on a Monday, it just throws the rest of the week off.

I don't think I'll bore you with who had what except for some notable exceptions. The hangnail situation belongs to Luke. He's fine now. The limping is shared between Ben and Lucy. Ben would go to basketball practice, be fine until we got home and then start limping/not being able to put any weight on his leg. He'd lay around for the day but by the end of the afternoon be able to get his weight back on it and play a mean game on Saturday only to limp by the next day. Turns out he has a pulled hamstring. A visit with the physical therapist diagnosed this and Ben left with stretches and strength exercises. Problem solved. Now on to his upset tummy. No ideas except the boy plays hard, rides hard and leaves it all out there.

When your just one year old giant puppy dog starts laying around, you know she's not feeling well. She didn't want to put any weight on her back right leg. We visited our vet and he guessed a strained knee. She's still not feeling her best so she'll be visiting him again real soon.

It's all this plus a bunch of regular life mixed with some new extra stuff that has made it a tad quiet on here.

Hope all is well with you. If not, here's a hug. We know how you feel.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Our Favorite Together Movies

In case you get snowed in in the next few days, or can't get out of the house for a date or just simply decide you and him are going to camp out on the couch, come what may, here's a list, albeit a very short list, of our favorite "together" movies.

Breakfast at Tiffany's
The Quiet Man

aaand...that's it.

Hon, can you think of any others? Really, I went downstairs to check our DVD's and that's all I came up with.

Have you send these movies? They are worth watching over and over. They never get old. Haven't seen The Quiet Man? Oh, you must! Katherine Hepburn and John Wayne set in Ireland. Keep watching because there is a fantastic scene near the end (the scene where I fell asleep the other night). 

Sure there are others I love: any Audrey Hepburn movie, the Meg Ryan/Nora Ephron ones (I would love to have Meg's hair in "You've Got Mail"), Julie and Julia. Bill has his favorites too, I'm sure, but these aren't the ones we will plop down with each other every time to watch.

We are bad at keeping up with new movies so do you have any recommendations for us? Or any old movies that fit into the "together" category? We recently watched The African Queen starring Humphrey Bogart and Katherine Hepburn. Does that one make your list?

Monday, February 18, 2013

How We Date

This was supposed to be posted last week Wednesday but me and Blogger had some issues. Take it for what it's worth. If you're gonna wait until next Valentine's Day to go on a date, you might really need the dating books.

With Valentine's Day tomorrow, I thought I'd share a couple dates Bill and I have had recently. We go in spurts so these have happened all within the last two weeks.

I finally got to have my Christmas present from Bill which was to go see the musical The Book of Mormon. It was at the Civic Center. He arranged it so that we went with some friends. So on Super Bowl Sunday, we headed out for supper and the 6:30 show. 

That's right. We skipped the Super Bowl. 

The people most disappointed about this turn of events? Our kids. Apparently last year's party at our place was such a hit that our kids and their friends have been anticipating this year's party all year long! We had no idea. It never occurred to Bill when he booked the tickets that this would be the same day as the game.

We were going to try out a new restaurant that neither of us couples had tried before but when we pulled up to the front door, a sign taped to it informed us that they were closed because of the game. What?! Well, we'll just take our business next door. Guess what? Not many people actually eat out during the game so we got a table right away. And also guess what? If it's not that busy in the restaurant and your waiter forgets to bring you steak sauce, you might get free dessert. Okay, that seemed a little extreme for such a small thing but if you insist...

What can I say about my choice of musical? Um...
Well, it's written very smartly. It is humorous but there are many parts and layers and it washes over you in big drowning waves and you might spend the next day or so picking it apart. It is irreverent. I can't say I recommend it without caution because it takes irreverent and pushes it over the edge in a big huge cannon-ball type shot. I won't list the subject matters that arise here because I like to keep things appropriate for most ages and those aren't appropriate. So, yes, there was an age recommendation for this show. It has fantastic characters. Savvy music. The traveling company we saw was excellent. Their orchestra- outstanding. 
I'm super happy I got to see it though I'm not sure what my friends thought of it or think of me now for being so enthusiastic to go see it. 

That was date #1. Number two was an in-house date. Sort of. Can you call a Friday night where two of the three kids are still home and one has a friend over and you make give your son's friend a bite of kale to try and then later you give your husband a haircut before settling on the couch while the boys play darts in the background to watch one of your favorite movies that the boys declare moves awfully slow and you accidentally fall asleep towards the end of a date? If so, then that's date #2.

Our most recent date was a combination of the first two dates, now that I think about it. Haha! It was after Audrey's band concert, after the kids were tucked in bed and after we were starting to wrap up things for the night. Bill suggested we run into town and go to a restaurant that has an appetizer we like. I wanted to taste them again before attempting to make them later this week and this seemed like a good of a time as any to do it. It's 9:30 pm. We hop in the van where I announce we need to fill up. (It's a nice romantic touch to the evening.) We dive into conversation during the drive in and eventually find ourselves at the building where our beloved appetizers were housed except... it's closed. Closed as in no longer is open for business. (Date #1, except they were going to be open the next day.) What do a sharp on-the-town couple do? Head back home, of course, where we already have beer and can finish munching on an appetizer I had made just before we left, that's what. (Date #2- at home) That's date number three.

I call all of these dates even though only the first one involved getting dressed neatly and leaving the house and children for an extended time. It's not the sort of thing you will read about in One Hundred Dates with your Spouse book or whatever other dating book you want to name. (I made that one up, by the way.) In fact, I'm more likely to get worked up into a tizzy about some minutia detail before we go out that I'll spend a good chunk of it fuming and the rest we will spend hashing out exactly what my problem is. Those date idea books aren't bad, but they do set up expectations of bigger is better even if they don't intend to. (I can only recall one date from a book and it involved a series of clues and gifts and ended with plane tickets to somewhere tropical. What do you think I'm expecting eventually, someday? Everything else seems to pale in comparison to that one future monumental date.) Bill wants to spend time with me, be with me, talk with me, have fun with me, share an experience with me. It means setting time aside just for us two.

Oh, we've also avoided major holidays that hype up the date thing, i.e. Valentine's Day. I've got expectation issues and Bill's got free will issues. This year we will be spending our Feb. 14 at the dentist and basketball practices. *swoon* He did surprise me with flowers in the morning- I like flowers. I loved looking at them in my five minutes home here and there, shoved in a make-shift vase of a cleaned out spaghetti jar. *I love that man!*  

Tell me about one of your recent dates.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Permission to Try

Today I want to share with you a little something written by Shauna, the wife of one of Bill's cousins.

I hope you'll pop over to (in)courage to read what she has to say in her guest post, Tryer's Remorse.

Shauna blogs at Permission To Be Real.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Get "7" for 5 and other Hatmaker book reviews

You all know my love for Jen Hatmaker's writing. I keep sharing her stuff on here. Perhaps it's because I find her refreshing. I see in her someone who's keeping it real, asking questions, taking risks, scraping off the Christian-ese and still seeing God show up and transform her and those around her. 

It's been a year since I read "7" An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess. I did lovely job of giving you perfect insight into what the book would be about when it was still in pre-order after only reading the introduction and first chapter. Right? :)

Here's what's happened in the past year since I read it. Bill's read it. Audrey's read it. I've had wack-o conversations with strangers about it. Engage me about it sometime and I will go off on you. My family's consensus about it? We think you should read it.

Jen decides to "fast" from seven different areas over the course of seven months. For the first month, she will eat from only seven foods. All month. Headaches, hilarity and heart-searching ensues. 

What if all that we own in our monetarily rich society is keeping us disillusioned to what God is truly after? What if we've mis-placed where our happiness lies? What if we are gripping so tightly to things that we don't give God any room to change us? Jen takes us through each month of her experiment and lays it out bare what she's found in herself.

This book is NOT the answer to your un-happiness. The idea behind this book is not to then take the experiment on verbatim and at the end you will have products X, Y, and Z to show for it. Don't think for a moment following Christ is exclusively about these seven areas. 

I'm strongly wording this because I think we tend to want something to do and think that that's where life will finally be, once and for all, perfect. Nope, not true. Also, I know that Jen didn't write this ever thinking that people would actually want to try it for themselves and so she doesn't write anything about that aspect (it be the sum answer to all of your consumer problems) but I think she would agree with me. 

The idea behind the book lingers. Whether you go ahead and try it for yourself or let it sit disturbingly in your soul, that's what I think is the effect of this book. I think it's a good kind of disturbance.

This week the Apple store is offering her book for the iPad, iPhone, and later model iTouch for $4.99! Follow this link to go directly to it.

Jen Hatmaker's "7" book for iPad

If you've just got to hold a book in your hand (that's me a lot of times), here's the link to it on Amazon.

Jen Hatmaker's "7" book from Amazon

I noticed it's available on Kindle for $4.99 also.

If you get hooked and want to find out more about this new church thing they have going, read her book Interrupted. I asked her which of her books beats her heart the best and she said that one. She said the others are not bad but not where she's at anymore. I've read that also. It's the story of how they left their big, mega-church and set up camp in the graveyard of churches in downtown Austin. It's their story of how they are serving the least of these. If you are sort of hooked on what lies behind "7", you'll probably be grabbing Interrupted next. 

Her husband, Brandon, also has a book out: Barefoot Church. While it might not have the story-telling zing that Jen's kind of writing has, its a church planter's perspective of the who, what, when, where, why and how they started their new church. Brandon shares from a very personal perspective that God didn't just call him out to start a new church with it's primary goal be to fill seats and be in the black but to start where love hits the pavement and works itself out. 

I prayed for my church a lot through this book. Not because I think my church is messed up, but because I want my church to draw closer to God and the leadership needs much prayer. I didn't pray for my idea of church or Brandon's idea of church but for God's idea of church.

Ok, that's enough, right? I didn't mean for this to be a Hatmaker book parade, but it turned out that way. Anyway, maybe you could start with one at least. Let me know what you think.


Tuesday, February 5, 2013


That's how basketball is marked on my calendar. Practice for Ben and Luke is Thursday night back to back and games are on Saturdays, usually just an hour apart. Perfect. They are a part of the Upward basketball league hosted by our church.

We've had quite the fun watching Luke learn the game and seeing Ben develop his skills even more. They've entertained us and the fans who've turned out to cheer them on.

Luke sort of has a fascination with the wrist bands.
He gets along great with every one on the team, including the refs.
He's learning to get back down the floor after a rebound.
Hands up is his best skill.
Ben drives it down the court time...
...after time.
He's a go-getter!

A few fans showed up. 
They took pictures and cheered!
Hanging out between games with Grandma.
At Upward, every game begins with prayer. We think it's a good way to go!