Love the Lord your God, listen to His voice and hold fast to Him, for the Lord is your life! Deut. 30:20

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Horse kind of day - part 1

I got to watch these precious 3 the other day!
All day!!

The first hour after they arrived, they wanted to watch a couple of shows on PBS.
They don't get to watch public tv at their home as channel 8 does not work in their town.

We had decided that we would go see the horses.
There are some horses close to where my parents live.

You walk through some woods to get there.

(Hannah took these 2 photos)

The other day when I went bird watching there, we had to go a long way around as the bridge was overflowing.  The creek was too swift to safely walk on the bridge.  I wasn't sure how it would be this day.  We have had a lot of rain!  One morning we had almost 3 inches!  It seems to rain every other day.  I think the drought in our area is over.  More rain predicted this weekend and next week.  Farmers can't get to their fields.
                                                                       south of our house

 back yard creek overflowing

There was water running over the bridge, but we watched another family playing in it and decided that it was safe enough.  No drainage ditches to fall into either.

Claire loved it too and went back and forth.

Proverbial back side photo.
I don't know who started this, and maybe it is getting old.
But it is cute!

Around the bend - the horses!

Friday, June 13, 2014


The other day, I thought
"There is something in this kitchen that STINKS!!!"

I thought it might be something in the fridge.  I cleaned it out
shelf by shelf.
Threw out some things and added baking soda.

Maybe it was the cabbage.  I had eaten up the cauliflower so I knew it wasn't that, although that sure can get to smelling bad when it is in the fridge too long.  The cabbage didn't smell, but just in case it was getting old, I cut it up along with some onion, carrots and made some oyakodonburi, one of my Japanese favorites.

The house was getting this wonderful aroma from 
the oyako but in this corner it
still smelled!

I cleaned the cabinet, counter top and fridge door.

And swept and mopped the floor.

Still smelled.

I emptied the garbage can and bleached it out.

Where was this odor???

I went back inside the fridge.  

It was definitely from there.  I looked through all my "tupperware"s again.  And this time I discovered it.  It was some left over black beans!  They weren't that old either but pew!!!

I threw it down the disposal and then added some ice-cubes that had lemon slices in it to freshen that up.

Lemon ice cube trays! I'm so excited!!

In my life, do I sometimes have something that "smells"?
A rude attitude, being too busy for someone, selfishness, a little unkind word.

Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. 2 Corinthians 2:15

 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.  Ephesians 5:2

Click here for a Oyako donburi recipe

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Update on the children

Someone asked for an update to the little kids who got e.coli.

In all, there were 8 children of the young mom's in my Bible study group who got it along with one child who was in contact with one of ours who also did.  Some did not get it too badly.  Cramping, diahhrea, vomiting (ok.  that's bad enough).  Three were hospitalized; 2 with HUS, a complication from E.Coli 0157-H7.

Going back to the start - 
We had just finished our Bible study of Galatians for the year.  At the end of the year, we always have an outing with the young moms and their children.  We generally go to the park (I was in Arkansas as my husband and son were going to Israel, so I missed this outing).

The geese seemed super friendly.  It is a possibility that this e-coli came from them.  How would you ever catch them to test them?  And how would you know which geese??  Can you imagine the health department guys running after all the geese at the park to swab them.  Hmmm.

One of the girls was going to be gone for that day so she invited everyone to come a couple of days earlier to her house.  She had a bottle calf.  And little chicks!  What fun would that be!  Not everyone could go that day, but several of the families did.

Because all of the children who got the e.coli had gone to this day's play date, it was suspect that the calf was the one who possibly caused it.

The health department tested Blacky, the calf and the test results came back negative, which means it didn't come from her.

We just don't know exactly where it came from.  The health department is still working on it.

There are actually some children in 2 other counties with this also.   Children we don't know or have contact with.

Our church has been very proactive in canceling our VBS, Sunday School and nursery for 5 weeks.  We KNOW that the illness was not spread through our facility, but we cleaned and scrubbed anyway and are taking measures so it will not spread since all the children were from our church.

The night this all began was the night that our young mom's group went out to see "Mom's Night Out" together.  We ate together before going to the theatre and then ended the evening going to Starbucks.   Such a fun time!  When one of the moms got back from our movie night, her husband mentioned that their daughter was having diahhrea.  

In the middle of the night they saw blood in the stool and took her in to ER.  She was diagnosed with Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS), .  Her kidneys shut down and she had to undo days of dialysis.  She had several blood transfusions.  There were a few nights that we were really worried for her.  She was in a lot of pain.

Because they had a 1 month old baby, they got a room at the hotel across from the hospital.  They did not qualify for the Ronald McDonald house as they lived only 30 miles away.  But Kari needed to nurse Jackson and also needed to be with Kayla, so a room was got.  She would go see Kayla while Grandma watched Jackson.  When Kari came back to the hotel, she would have to shower and change clothes.  They could not risk Jackson getting HUS as it is usually fatal in infants.

What a difficult time!

Justin the dad wrote:
Even though these last days have been the most enduring of my life I still know that God won't abandon us or Kayla. He never promised that we wouldn't have trials in this life, but exactly the opposite. He DID promise that he would never us leave us. I also have to remember that God Himself also experienced the pain of watching his child in pain and I cannot think of more common ground to approach Him and that He truly understands the experiences of Kayla, Kari, and I. I think about my Grandpa Lucky and every time he experienced the challenges of this life he approached with just a basic and unwavering faith in Jesus and that He would always be there. Our circumstances and the difficulties of life may change, but God doesn't change.
Romans 8: 38-39
For I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from his love. Death can’t, and life can’t. The angels won’t, and all the powers of hell itself cannot keep God’s love away. Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, or where we are—high above the sky, or in the deepest ocean—nothing will ever be able to separate us from the love of God demonstrated by our Lord Jesus Christ when he died for us

From Kayla:
It is so easy to get wrapped up and overwhelmed with the what-ifs of the unknown future. I am learning more and more each day that I have to give my worries and fears to HIM, it is just too heavy for me to carry. He is bigger than any fear or worry and will be there to carry me through it all. Even when things are crumbling around me, He is still near. I read today that it is human nature to worry, however when we keep HIM near through HIS word, that fear and anxiety fade away. I definitely still have many weak moments with lots of tears, but when I keep my faith strong and my eyes on HIM they become less and less. The most amazing thing is that God doesn't expect us to always to be strong and full of faith, he knows we are human and will have weak moments.....He is there by our side regardless. I am learning this slowly! I am still fearful of the what the future holds, but every day I am filled with more and more strength.

Again  from Justin:
Thank you to everyone for the prayers and support for Kayla. I have never before been the focus of such support and prayer from such a great amount of people many of whom have never met Kayla or Kari and I. We cannot put into words the thanks to all of you. Thanks to all of my GP classmates for sharing Kayla's page. Thank you to all of you that are also providing support and prayer for Kari as well. The strength and endurance that Kari and I have been relying on is directly related to all of your prayers and us leaning not on our own strength, but the power of God.
2 Corinthians 4: 8-9
We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.

Our Bible study went together to have a special visitor for Kayla, once she felt better.

Last Friday evening, Kayla was released after almost miraculously turning a corner.  A couple of days earlier, the kidney specialist said that she may need a transplant.  They did not think she would recover from that.  But she did!!

Costs for hotel and food and hospitalization are lots so if you want to help this family, go to this web site:

The other child who has HUS was in contact with one of our kids.  Their child had not been too ill and it was thought to be past the time it could be transmitted.  But somehow she got it.

She is in ICU at Wesley in Wichita for HUS.  Also has had transfusions and on dialysis.  How we pray for her!

The dad recently wrote:
Joni and I need prayers for strength and to get rest when we sleep . Yes we are having amazing help from our mothers watching her at night so we can get sleep but we are just exhausted. Yes its just sitting in a room and watching her and helping to take care of her but i can honestly say its one of the most mentally taxing things ive ever had to do. If it wasnt for everyones prayers and support Im not sure what kind of state we would be in nor would I like to find out.
God has kept us afloat through this and he will keep us going through the rest of it. This time has made such an impact on my understanding of how much Christ protects us and holds us up and provides for us in our time of need. Some might say that the people that have been helping us are great and it shows how amazing people are. Id have to say that its Christ in them that is making them so amazing and giving. We are all wretches and with out Christ we would be nothing.

Jeff's sister is helping by using her artistic ability.  If you want to help with finances for Finnley, you can purchase this print.

Or there is this site where you can give too.

* * * * * *

Romans 8:28 will be played out.  Our enemy, our adversary, is in the business to create chaos and to make us angry at God.  But God is our Rescuer, He is the One Who redeems and can make good from the bad.

Appreciate on going prayers!

Monday, June 9, 2014

The garden

It can be a lot of work to take care of one's yard.
When we had little children, we didn't take much time to do that.
But now we have a little more time to devote to it -
and really, it is kind of fun!
We are novices at it, but we are learning.

 There is always lots of weeding to be done.

In particular from seeds from the bird feeders.
Even from the no mess, no waste seeds.

There is a sparrow who is insistent that she wants to build her nest in the feeder!
Wouldn't that be a good spot?!  
She could have her nest and have her buffet right there!
Goodness.  I am cleaning that out each day.

I forgot to prune back a weigela plant last spring.  
It is best to prune them after they have finished blooming.  
This is because weigela bloom on wood that is a year old.
Well, my weigela looked BAD.  It needed pruning.  Lots of bare branches with just a few leaves on the end. But below all that awful, scraggly mess was a beautiful bush.  So it had to be trimmed.

Much better!
It reminded me of John 15:1,2
I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 
He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, 
while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes 
so that it will be even more fruitful. 

Isn't it interesting that He has to prune branches that BEAR fruit!

 We weeded and re-potted and worked for some time.  I began with my gloves on but as time went on, somehow I took them off.
Not too smart on my part.
I ended up with a blister.

I wonder, when God works on me, pruning and weeding
 what needs to be cleaned out,
does He get "blisters"?  Does He hurt?

See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands... Isaiah 49:16  
In Ezekiel 6 and in many other passages, God says 
" I have been grieved by their adulterous hearts."
He wants our hearts!  How He loves us!

I come to the garden alone 
While the dew is still on the roses 
And the voice I hear falling on my ear 
The Son of God discloses. 

And He walks with me, and He talks with me, 
And He tells me I am His own; 
And the joy we share as we tarry there, 
None other has ever known. 

He speaks, and the sound of His voice, 
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing, 
And the melody that He gave to me 
Within my heart is ringing. 


I'd stay in the garden with Him 
Though the night around me be falling, 
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe 
His voice to me is calling.