Monday, September 29, 2008

Mmm Mmm Good

For a long time I've heard that yogurt is good for you and your health, but I've never liked it. I remember in college trying yogurt different times and different kinds, but never tolerating the taste. But I still knew it was good for me, so when I had kids, I began feeding them yogurt as little kids. They all like it. Now fast forward to last year, when I realized that the yogurt I was feeding the kids was merely lots of sugar and not full of the "goodies" which should make yogurt good for you. So I began switching them over to plain or vanilla flavored yogurt, allowing them to add our own frozen strawberries, or some can of fruit or fresh fruit. They have all liked that (well, one not so much, but he is getting there).

But I've still not liked it and neither has David. But in an effort to "learn to like it," I started eating small portions of the Stonyfield Farm plain yogurt. It was tolerable, but still not something I wanted.

One day I did my grocery shopping in a different Hy-Vee. While looking in the dairy section for more yogurt I saw this,

remembered that I had read in "French Women Don't Get Fat" that Greek yogurt was so good and tasty, and decided to buy it.

Oh wow- I love this yogurt! It is so creamy and delicious, tart like sour cream (which I've always loved), and oh so good. Now I want to eat yogurt and have even craved it for a snack. Eating it with some homemade granola and fresh peaches has been my breakfast choice for several days. David really likes it too, and because we're crazy and this brand is on the expensive side, we're going to try to make Greek yogurt. Hopefully it will be as tasty as The Greek God's brand and we can make it all the time.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Living up to her name

The characters:
Nathan - 8 year old son
Jeremiah - neighborhood friend
Abigail - 7 year old daughter
Samuel - 5 year old son
Me - Mother
David - Father

The scene:
8year old son and neighborhood friend playing in one area of the yard; 7 year old daughter and 5 year old son playing together in another area of the yard; mother sitting trying to finish "Mansfield Park;" Dad, returning home, pulls the car into the driveway. Upon seeing the car, Abigail comes running, smiling ear to ear.

As Dad exits the car, he says, "Hi Abby, why are you smiling so big?"
Abby replies, "Because my Daddy is home."

Dad's heart swells for the rest of the evening as he repeats this simple dialog to us a number of times.

Abigail definitely is her "Father's joy."

Friday, September 26, 2008

In God, My Fiathful God

In the last two months I've worshiped in two other LCMS churches due to our vacations. The first one was at my in-laws congregation. I knew what I would get there, TLH page 15. I didn't know that Pastor would pick one of my new favorite hymns to sing, "In God, My Faithful God." (LSB 745). The second time was last Sunday in northern WI. Having never been up there over a Sunday, we weren't sure where to go, but the guys decided on the one south where we could then leave for home after worshiping.

We arrived quite early and had a chance to look around and meet the pastor and some of the parishioners. When we sat down, I decided that I would try really hard to not nit-pick what wasn't right. So instead I focused on what was. They used the liturgy (although it was written in the bulletin and parts were added or left out), the pastor preached on the epistle (although it wasn't the best Lutheran sermon I've ever heard), we sang "Salvation unto Us has Come" (although all the gospel verses were omitted), and the Lord's Supper was served.

Yes there were many things that made me scratch my head, but one of the things that made it easier was hymn 745. It was used as a communion hymn. I simply love the words to this hymn and it really strengthens me and always reminds me to cling to Christ.

In God, my faithful God,
I trust when dark my road;
Great woes may over-take me,
Yet He will not forsake me.
My troubles He can alter;
His hand lets nothing falter.

My sins fill me with care,
Yet I will not despair.
I build on Christ, who loves me;
From this rock nothing moves me.
To Him I will surrender,
To Him, my soul's defender.

If death my portion be,
It brings great gain to me;
It speeds my life's endeavor
To live with Christ forever.
He gives me joy in sorrow,
Come death now or tomorrow.

O Jesus Christ, my Lord,
So meek in deed and word,
You suffered death to save us
Because Your love would have us
Be heirs of heavnly gladness
When ends this life of sadness.

"So be it," then, I say
With all my heart each day.
Dear Lord, we all adore You,
We sing for joy before You.
Guide us while here we wander
Until we praise You yonder.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Back Home Again

Well, not in Indiana anymore, but home again none the less. What an absolutely wonderful, fun-filled, vacation we had. This was our third year heading north with friends. This, though, was the first year that both families were able to stay the full week and no one got sick. Woo Hoo! From canoeing to hiking, eating to playing games, volleyball to swimming, to countless other things, we all had a great time.

The new maintenance man for the camp had moved in with his family into the home right behind our cabins. They are a homeschooling family with 6 children! Four boys and two girls ages 16 - 6. Our kids and theirs had all sorts of fun playing together and look forward to next year.

On the way to camp last Sunday I was reading "Cheaper by the Dozen" for our read-a-loud. All of a sudden, David exclaimed, "I think that was an eagle on the side of the road!" We turned around and drove back. It was an eagle, sitting on the side of the road eating carrion. When we drove buy slowly, it flew into the ditch, but as we stopped further back to turn back around, it walked back to continue feeding. David then drove slowly by so I could try to take a picture. I was able to snap two.

One while it was still on the side of the road

and then as it flew off.

Later in the drive we saw deer and then that night we heard loons on the lake. What a nice way to begin our vacation!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


One of the reasons David loves homeschooling so much is that his children have the opportunity to learn and love Latin just like he does.

"It is music to my ears when I hear my children speaking Latin," he said right before snapping this picture.

I had begun the very first Latin class with Nathan and Abby using Prima Latina. David had arrived home moments later from his early morning Bible breakfast and heard me say, "Salvete," with Nathan and Abby responding, "Salve."

I'll continue to teach Prima Latina and then hand them over to David to continue their Latin education just like he has with Hannah and Ellie.

Latin, it is a good thing.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me!

Today I'm celebrating my birthday at camp with my family and friends. The kids are baking me a cake and we brought along our homemade ice-cream maker to enjoy with the cake. It should be a lovely day.

Monday, September 15, 2008


Look what I did when I backed out of the garage the other day.

Not exactly the smartest thing ever, huh? Add this to the list of other things that went wrong. Does this make three Laura or is there some sort of time limit and now it is starting over?

Sunday, September 14, 2008


Yee Haw, we're headed up north for a week of relaxing in a cabin next door to a cabin which will house our good friends.

After this week, we will bask in not doing anything except eating, playing Settlers of Catan, eating, visiting, eating, and participating in all the camp's available activities from hiking to Frisbee golf, from canoeing to archery, and of course, eating.

Thanks to blogger's ability to publish posts in the future, I have some awaiting your reading pleasure while I'm away.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

How I love Lands' End

It is that time of year again, time to bring out the fall clothes and see what fits and doesn't. This is particularly hard with children who grow and have outgrown all hand-me downs. Such is the case with our Hannah.

Now I don't really think of myself as a prude, but I must lean that way since I can't find jeans that are decent for an almost 13 year old girl to wear. We started out by going to the mall. We looked at Sears, then Herbergers, then Maurices. Every single place had low-rise, flare-cut jeans, and no straight-leg, normal-rise jeans. Some of the zippers were barely 3 inches long! Plus there were no normal shirts, most had some sort of writing or design I didn't like or think appropriate. Poor Hannah just said, "I hate shopping" and was almost in tears. Dad suggested we go home and check out Lands' End.

I was afraid that Hannah would be too big for girls size 16 in Lands' End and not big enough for the smallest misses. but when we arrived home from the mall I sat down at the computer, clicked on the girl's tab and was simply delighted by what I found. Normal, decent clothes at a reasonable price. I checked what the measurements are for a size 16 girl and then we measured Hannah. The only problem? She is taller than what is listed, but I called the number and the very helpful, courteous representative checked what the inseam length on the jeans are and they would be plenty long. Woo Hoo!

So Hannah sat down next to me and away we shopped in the comfort of our own home, clicking away on jeans, sweat pants (actual normal sweat pants!), shirts, beautiful sweaters, pajamas, and a darling skort. We picked basics that would make several different outfits.

When the box came in the mail, it was like Christmas and she, David, and I were simply delighted how well-made every item is, that it fits well, and she looks like a lovely young lady.

Go ahead, check out Lands' End for your children - girls and boys both! I simply can't recommend them to you enough. They have a great website, wonderful customer service, quick delivery on orders, great return policy, and the quality of their clothing will last through multiple children. I had forgotten how much I loved Lands' End, but this week I remembered once again why I used to only shop there and never went to the store.

You can be certain, that from now on Lands' End, either by looking at a catalog or on-line, will be the first place I shop.

Friday, September 12, 2008

No Lycopene Deficiency Here


Salsa (top shelf): 23 Quart
Spaghetti Sauce (middle shelf): 35 Quart
Juice (bottom shelf): 10 Quart (I still had 10 from last year)

A first for David

On Tuesday David had a funeral. After the luncheon he came home to tell us that he experienced a first in 11 years of being a pastor. Apparently while waiting in line for the lunch, a man had waited to be in line beside David and "talk" to him.

He started out telling David that he has a problem with "you young Lutheran pastors." David asked if he could ask why. He was willing to answer that. "I've been Lutheran longer than you've been alive and at my relative's (I think it was his mother, but not certain) funeral the young pastor wouldn't let me play mom's favorite song." Well, David can't speak to that although he feels pretty certain that what that young pastor did was most likely the right thing and what he would have done in the same situation. But this man wasn't finished "picking a fight."

"And you enunciate to much." he told David. "I've studied that and you would make a good Baptist pastor." David (more than a little shocked) responded, "My Dad is hard of hearing and he has told me many times that if he can't hear the pastor what is the good of that. "

So if you ever come visit and have the opportunity to worship with us, know that my husband "enunciates too much," and therefore you will hear the Word of the Lord read and preached clearly, whether you have the ears to hear is another thing.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

When it rains it pours....

No rest for the wicked... and any other saying you can think of pretty much fits our life right now.

We leave for vacation this coming Sunday afternoon, by then David will have completed (since last Thursday, Sept. 4th):
3 funerals
Nursing home communion service
1 wedding
4 meetings
3 baptisms
2 weekend services
Catechesis class
starting of Sunday and School and Bible class

Makes my job look easier! I only have to teach the munchkins, cook the meals, clean up afterward, double check my list of what to pack, pack, and finishing canning.

Boy are the tomatoes abundant in garden's and I'm getting many from different people. So far I've canned 18 quarts of spaghetti sauce, 8 pints of pizza sauce, 10 quarts of tomato juice, plus more tomatoes awaiting me, which will go into more salsa. Plus I canned 8 pints of grape jelly from the grapes picked from the neighbor's, who is currently selling (anyone wanna come live by me?). It is a lot of work, but I love having all those jars lining the basement shelves to use all year long.

I better get back to work!

Thursday, September 04, 2008


Two things I wanted to do to make this school year easier was 1. once more do weekly menu planning and 2. have a decent schedule of what child is doing what, when, and where.

For the past two weeks I have been successful in the weekly menu planning. Wow, it really is nice for me to have that all thought out. To know what I'm fixing, what has to be defrosted when is an ease to my mind. Plus this last week when I knew that I couldn't get to the grocery until this afternoon, it didn't matter. All the meals where planned and I had every thing I needed. Sure we might be out of a lot of things, but we still ate and ate well. It is nice to think that forcing myself to do weekly menu planning, helps me use up what we have, lower our grocery bill, and helps me to see how we're doing eating fruits and veggies.

Finally on Monday, I was able to come up with a school schedule. Last year I had to make a new schedule for each day (our school week is Tuesday - Saturday) due to various music lessons. This year is no different. Plus with 5 kids now needing my attention, I was quite afraid how I would fit it all in. Well, two days down and so far so good. Yes it is crazy and I'm busy from 7:30am until 4 or 5 pm, but I think we can make this work.

Nathan and Abby thought it was neat that I printed off schedules for them so they know what they are to do when. They especially like that now they know when they have play time available. For two days at least, they have complained little when I call them for a lesson.

Hannah spends almost two - two and a half hours working independently in the mornings, which frees me to help with all the rest. Ellie, is helping me out by rotating laundry or starting some of the meals as I'm teaching someone else and her lesson is finished. And Sam, thinks it is so cool that Mommy spends an hour with him all by himself. We read a story (sort of Five in A Row) and practice letters and counting.

I'm hoping this will be our best school year yet.

Now - stop your laughing!!!