Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Here are a few photos of our family preparing to celebrate Easter, as well as our festivities on Resurrection Sunday.  It has been an awesome season and joyous celebration!

Abby Grace and Hannah preparing to make Easter cookies.

All the girls painting their egg-shaped cookies. 

They made beautiful works of art! 

Lots of icing. :) 

And here they are dying Easter eggs.  They had a great time hiding eggs for each to find all week.  

Our family on Easter Sunday in the backyard. 

We had over one hundred people for a backyard celebration. 

Zoe searching for Easter eggs during the party. 

Hannah and Abby Grace are also on the hunt. 

Mark and I shared the Resurrection story with the children using Resurrection Eggs (Such a great tool to keep your focus on the Risen King.  If you don't have them go to Family Life's website and order them for next year:

Outdoor Worship.  We sang "In Christ Alone," my favorite. 
You can hear this song done beautifully and worshipfully by Keith and Kristyn Getty on YouTube:

The lyrics are: 
In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand

In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
'Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt of life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
'til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand

Mark preaching in the backyard.  What an awesome day of ministry--thank you, Lord!

While I am at it, let me recommend an excellent book for Lent.  I read "Amon's Adventure" with the girls over the last month or so. We were all captivated by it and it truly captured our hearts for Easter.  The very well written story takes place during the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.  It follows the life of a devout Jewish boy and brings to life the history and reality of life in Jerusalem 2,000 years ago.  I cannot recommend it heartily enough!  All six of us give it two thumbs up. You can buy it on for $11.55.
Amon's Adventure: A Family Story for Easter

Happy 4th Birthday, Hannah!

Hannah Sophia turned four last week and we had a Dora Pancake Birthday party for her.  She had a few good friends over for a morning party and the kids all got to decorate their own pancakes, as well as aprons.  It was good, messy fun.

We are so thankful for little Hannah's life!  I can hardly believe she is four.  She has a sweet spirit and is often very affectionate with her family.  She has a hilarious sense of humor and keeps all of us laughing.  She also has a strong spirit and can command children twice her age.  She's a delight!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Cute quotes, mulberries and crab-sized spiders

Today Hannah said, "When I grow up, I want to be a doctor.  But first you have to get me the outfit for it, Mom."

We've been studying the solar system lately in school and Zoe is devouring all the facts she can about our sun and other planets.  She came to me tonight with a very worried look on her face and said, "You know, Mom, I just learned that all stars die.  What is going to happen to us when the sun dies?"  I tried to assure her that we'd be in heaven by then and that there's no sign of the sun burning up anytime soon.  She wasn't convinced, though, and went to bed with it weighing heavily on her mind.

Lastly, we have mulberries!  Our mulberry tree in our front yard is producing much fruit again.  They are delicious!  Yesterday I made a mulberry tart and served it to my two dear friends, Kristie and Michelle.

All of our kids (8 between us) played in the back yard while we three chatted up motherhood and adoption (we each have one adopted child) and more.  Three Japanese little girls from next door came over to play too.  As a token of gratitude for allowing the kids to play for about an hour, their mom brought over two little snacks: a box of "digestive crackers" (hmmmm) and veggie sticks (like pretzels with veggie flavor).  Japanese snacks are always an adventure.

I thought you might like to know how our pup Piper relaxes every night on her doggie bed: 

Lastly, you know you live on a sub-tropical island when there is a spider in your house and your child yells, "Ah!  There's a crab in here!  Mommy, a crab just crawled under the couch!"  Then, when you question your older children about the location and size of the "crab" you learn it was spider, and indeed the size of their hands.  The problem with spiders with legs this long is that they run very fast and they are hard to reach and kill.  I don't think they're poisonous, so grandmas, rest easy. I believe they are called Brown Huntsmen spiders and I've heard that the Japanese actually welcome them into their homes, as they eat other bugs.  Blegh.