Wednesday, September 26, 2007


"Jen, what are Cooties?" asked my new 12 year old from, how would YOU answer that one?

Sunday, September 23, 2007


I need a little grace. I mean it's not a really big deal, but I need grace dealing with all this change. Some would say it's my pride talking, but I think it's really a symptom of the dreaded disease: Change Overload

For me it started way back when our church's Vacation Bible School changed its name from VBS to SSS which stands for Super Summer Spectacular. Please don't get me wrong, I'm all for change (stop it Dave) and I "get" why we change the name of things -- in this case it was important because our church ministers to kids in a truly spectacular way. Our children's ministry is very creative and SSS much better represents what really happens that week in the summer. But then this amazing tidal wave of changes started.

It's not just our church, it's sort of a nation-wide thing. Churches in general started changing their names and establishing new identities. I remember when a wave of new "Community" churches the same buildings with the same people as the Baptist Churches used to be. (Hey, I grew up Baptist, so I get to talk about this!)

When I first started attending our church here in Portland, what I grew up calling "Bible Study" was called "Home Group" and sometimes "Small Group" and now changed again to "Life Group." Last year our youth "Retreats" changed to "Advances" (See, it's a GOOD thing I know, I'm not saying it isn't I promise!)

Just for fun, I call Christian Supply (the local Christian book store) "Supply" just because it will save me a step know, one less thing!

Well, I propose we extend a little more grace to each other when we accidentally use the old name for things. Remember, some of these names of things I've been using here in Portland for the last 12 years! Other names of things I've been using since I first started attending church at age 3yrs. I am getting older you know, and change happens a little more slowly. Hey I know, I propose that you laugh at my mistakes and I'll laugh at yours! Maybe its not so much an overload of change, as it is that other dreaded disease: Correction Overload

Thursday, September 20, 2007

road kill

It's interesting having a 7th grader in the house. They do lots of dissecting of things in Science class. It's also interesting how easily I get queasy in my old age.

The last two days have involved transporting "extra credit" (road kill) to my new daughter's science class. One day a mole, the next a rat -- they were donated by my very helpful neighbors. Both days I had a stomach ache -- any correlation you think?

Last night we passed a dear in the middile of the road on the way home from youth group, "Forget about it!" I declaired in my best New York accent.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

real ministry

"Do you think I have cancer?" asked my son's seven year old friend with all the seriousness that little boys should never have to have.

This was an important moment in his life. You see this little guy had just lost his 6 year old t-ball buddy to cancer the year before. His neighbor to cancer the month before. And his Grandpa to cancer the week before.

Now he's standing in my kitchen, rubbing an itch on his eye and asking me in all seriousness if he has cancer. When I take his shoulders, look him in the eye, and tell him with great motherly confidence that "No, you do not have cancer." I can feel God working through me -- Now that is real ministry, and it is an honor.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

bad dog!

...actually, just "teething dog!" Dave had the great idea to make a giant Christmas wreath out of all the chewed up victims of Oreo! I can't wait. It will be a very big wreath!

Friday, September 07, 2007


"What a splendid day!" said Anne, drawing a long breath. "Isn't it good just to be alive on a day like this? I pity the people who aren't born yet for missing it. They may have good days, of course, but they can never have this one. And it's splendider still to have such a lovely way to go to school by, isn't it?"
Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

My kids started school this week and this paragraph just about illustrates their excitement! "My class feels just like a family!" exclaimed McKenzie. "I have so many friends already!" shared T.Michael with great enthusiasm. That was the FIRST day.

Yesterday, day two, McKenzie shared, "My teacher said she went to bed at 8:30pm." (Poor dear) And then T.Michael reluctantly shared, ", have to sit by someone else tomorrow." (Hmmm)

Here we go with real life already!

...did I mention we had a complete blast this summer?!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Adios Felix!

Thank you for your prayers. Felix passed over Honduras with little effect on our loved ones!
Here's a copy of the email sent by the Director of the orphanage in Honduras to Rona who is our U.S. contact person:

Dear Rona,
Thankfully we are all fine. Just a bit of rain.....we are blessed that Felix veered south after hitting land. The children and staff are fine, and school should resume as normal tomorrow. The community stepped up to the plate, offering assistance, water, etc.....Our internet is down at Hogar, even at our house the service comes and goes, as does the electricity.
Please spread the word.
Thanks for your love and prayers,

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


Please pray for my friends in Honduras as they face Hurricane Felix today. I've been in contact with them, and they are prepared and praying. Please pray specifically for the Hogar de Ninos Emanuel (the orphanage) and for the Maradiaga family. From what I've read, landslides are also a big issue during these storms. I got an email from Jeny Maradiaga, she was thanking me for the prayers on their behalf.