Thursday, February 28, 2013

Wrapping Up Before Saying "Rabbit"

Now there's a title that's meaningless to most everyone.  But if you're still reading, good for you, you inquisitive soul.  Basically, the title means that it's the last day of February, and tradition demands that the first word I utter after midnight tonight must be "Rabbit."  If I want the share of good fortune intended for me, that is.  And I'm not a bit superstitious.  But I like cheap entertainment, and that qualifies.  The "wrapping up" part refers to sharing my remaining February pictures of all the grandkids, because, alas, I won't see any of them again until next Tuesday.  So, drum roll, please . . . .

Let's take a look at Evan's workout regime.
First to the equestrian events.

Now gymnastics.

And now we combine the all-American pastime,
baseball, with tetherball.  There's a lot less chasing
of the ball for Grandpa, I guarantee you.

Hunter plays with a favorite book, "The Lost Coin."  
Each page has a creature or object with a narrow slit
into which a gold coin can be slipped.  All the kids
like this book, but Hunter most of all.  He especially
likes for the deadly shark to devour the coin.  Which
he (the shark, not Hunter) then spits out again!

Bri and Grandma relax with paint by water.
Our artistic genes are apparent.

 When Hunter's train crashes, a battery pops out
No problem, because his Cookie Monster puppet
is there to retrieve it.  Of course, Hunter has to
facilitate (by finally placing the battery in Cookie
Monster's mouth).  Well, we all need help sometimes.

Different day, same train.  Evan enjoys
setting up an obstacle course for the locomotive.
Note our latest innovation.  Instead of the track,
we now use a hula hoop, which the train dutifully
follows in circles.  None of those pesky derailments
you have with tracks.  Not that there's anything wrong
with that!

Yes, I'm sure many more crashes are in our future!

This gumball machine (yard sale years ago)
is perfectly fine for dispensing marbles (non-
consumable, of course).  The allure of watching
them race down the spiral is undeniable.  And
fortunately, the children like it, too.  Ahem.

Claire prepares to create art.  But it's so
distracting having fruit and muffins close at hand.

I think Claire would rather color a picture 
that isn't already there.

Grandma decides this is a Kodak moment.
But we're not quite ready!

On second attempt, Claire and Grandpa
are a little more prepared.

And on the third try, all three say "cheese"
just right!  Meanwhile, there great-great-great-
Grandma and Grandpa Loyd look on stoically.

Evan has grown quite attached to our
roaring T-Rex.  He gives Grandma a real thrill.

 When Bri was younger, balancing this eagle
seemed like magic, but it wasn't easy.

Now that she's older, she's become a
magician herself!

 In one of those frequent serendipitous moments,
on the same day Bri brought her book about beetles,
Grandma detects a black beetle that had come in
with our firewood.

Bri's been familiar with beetles around our
house since she was a baby.  But they've
usually been outside.

They play like old friends.

And here's Bri's "Beautiful Beetle Book."

"Little beetle, do you want me to read
you a book?"

"It's all about you and your cousins."

And now, I'm out of pictures, so I think
I'll do as Bri's chalkboard message suggests.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Gleanings from Romans

I have gained more insight from my recent reading and re-reading of the book of Romans than I would have imagined.  Here are some gleanings I read in chapters 14 and 15 today that are both cautionary and encouraging to me.  I hope they will be helpful to some of you, my reader-friends, as well.

(Note: these are excerpts from my NIV-- I invite you to read the entire chapters in your own Bible)

Romans 14: 11-13
It is written: 
"As surely as I live, says the Lord,
'every knee will bow before me;
every tongue will confess to God.'"
So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.
Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another.  Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother's way.

Romans 14: 17-19
For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men.  Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.

Romans 14: 4-7
For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.  May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

Romans 15: 13
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Monday, February 18, 2013

February Family Night at the Kirbys

Even bigger than Valentine's Day for
our family was our monthly family dinner.
This time the Kirby's hosted, and Evan
and Claire are the excited welcoming
committee for their cousins.

In no time, Claire and Bri are into the
super heroes and other toys.

The boys head upstairs without delay.
Before their sisters notice!

 The girls have a private table, with Bri
and her hair ribbons, Claire with her
butterfly wings.  It's a gala event.

 This over-sized chair is perfect for
rough-and-tumble.  Over goes Claire . . .

Over goes Evan . . .

 And over goes Bri.  Don't worry-- Hunter
would get in on this a little later-- but no picture.

Hmm.  Cabinet stuffing?  An interesting
activity.  You won't find the kids doing this
at my and Judy's house.  NO WAY!!
Um . . . our cabinets are already stuffed.

There's more to this cabinet-stuffing.  You 
can actually listen in on a little of the closed-
door conversations, with the boys in one
cabinet and the girls in another.  And it
wasn't the grownups idea, either.

I love it when the boys (or girls) climb up 
on Grandpa's knees.  Somebody has taught
them to ham it up for the camera.

Back upstairs, Claire proudly shows off
her newborn triplets.  Evan is glad he won't
be the youngest any more.

Welcome to the playroom, Grandma.
274 days without an accident.
Yeah, right!

Bri sees all kinds of possibilities with Minnie
Mouse's accessories.  Especially the makeup!

 Bri borrows one of the triplets.
She wants to practice her mothering,too.

Claire boxes up the other two, and
they're off for some necessary activity,
perhaps a change of diapers, a bottle, or a nap.

Hunter is quite fond of this snug little
tub-- his imaginary bathtub.

And Evan can't wait for his turn in the tub.
Do you think these boys are this eager for
their real baths?

February is fleeting by, short month that
it is.  But we'll be looking for the grandkids
on our doorstep soon, just like clockwork!

Grandkid Shenanigans

Here are some glimpses of fun with the
grandkids in early February.

At Bri's house, she prepares to show you 
the hair that Grandpa braided, adorned
by two lovely ribbons.

 View # 1

 View # 2 is my favorite.  She's adorable.

Amanda and Judy make sure these children are 
amply supplied with strawberries and other fresh 
fruit at all times.There are never any complaints.

 Bri even snapped a photo of me and
Judy while we were there.

Bri and Hunter are used to helping Amanda
in the kitchen all the time, so once again
Judy involved them in preparing the chicken
nuggets and pizza rolls.

On a different day, it was warm enough
for Evan and Claire to play outdoors 
at our house.  So it was off to the sandpile
to bake cookies, cakes, and muffins.

Here's Evan in his red-hot roadster.  I'll
take the kids anywhere on the property 
they want to go.  A good workout.

There was a time when Evan wanted nothing
to do with this tire swing horse, but he loved
it this day.

Claire says,"Thanks for stopping by.  You're
just in time to help with the cleaning!"

These next few pictures feature our Santa
Claus train, which for some reason (Grandpa
couldn't find it) didn't get pulled out till February!

Bri gets in the mood by fastening her
jingle bell bracelet.

First we'll see if Santa can push the train.

Okay, li'l train.  Just see if you can go
between my feet.  I dare you!

Whooo-Whooo!  Comin' through!

But the most fun of all is setting up
unavoidable crashes!

Bri and Hunter both love to create things
with these magnetic construction pieces.
Like many of our best toys, these once
belonged to Jennifer and Amanda.

Here are two wonderful cars Bri created
a little later when it was her turn.

As for Hunter, he had moved on to snack
time.  And the most fun is being allowed
to use Grandma's special scissors to open
fruit snacks all by himself!

Let's wrap it up with this 2 minute video.
It consists of Bri's imaginary phone call,
Hunter's analysis of a nesting ball, and 
some cute interactions.

If you think this was fun, my next post will
have all four grandkids together.  Now that
is simply not to be missed!