Sunday, July 29, 2012

Olympics - Children's Sermon

Today's Children's Sermon was based on 1 Corinthians 9:24-25

Once the kids came to the front I asked them if they had heard anything about some big world wide event that started on Friday? With a few questioning looks, I asked if they had heard anything about athletes going to compete? To which I got "The Olympics!" "Yes! You are correct, but wait let me have 3 volunteers." I selected 3 kids and had them lineup as if starting a race. Then "Today we are going to have our own Olympic Event - right here. We are going to have the 25ft race! So line up, get ready, get set, Oh wait a minute, I forgot, I have a few questions for the runners. First who is your coach?" one young man replied "My Dad" "Really?(turning to his Dad), Dad did you know this?" To which he shook his head no. Another young man replied "I don't know" and the 3rd runner replied "My sister" I replied "I see, hmmm." Okay so for this huge race, have you been training? I mean the Olympics have a whole Training Center in Colorado and they have been training for years and eating special diets. So have you been training?" To this they shook their heads no. "I see, well, I think that is all of the questions, so if your ready." (we cleared a path across the front of the church for the runners to run across) "On your mark, get set,.. Wait (and after I got the one who started anyhow back to the starting line) who is going to win this race?"  To which all 3 raised their hands. "Well, that's good that you all think that you are going to win, because what's the point of racing if you have the attitude of "oh well I think I'll come in last"  Is there much point?" No!" So okay let's try this again "On your Mark, get set, go!" (and the 3 ran across the front of the church and then I declared a winner.)

"Well did you know that God talks about running and racing in the Bible, Let's look at 1 Corinthians 9:24-25"
"Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who compete in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever."

"So God has given us a race to run. The race of living a Christian Life. We are to run or live life in a way that we will win the Crown or eternal life. So according to what we just read, what do we need to do? (A reply was) Train -"Yes we must train to be Christan's and to follow God, but how do we do that?" "We need to worship, sing and come to church" were some of the answers. I agreed with them, but I then asked about our training manual - the Bible. "If we read it and spend time talking with our Trainer - Jesus, then we will be able to Run the Race that God has set before us."

"So this week when you are watching the Olympics, enjoy watching them, but ask yourself if you are training with God and Running a Good Race for him." And we closed in prayer.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

2012 4-H Projects

Well, Robert's project books were due on Thursday, so most of this week was spent helping him complete his books. The 4-H program is a great way to keep the kids learning all year long about things they like and are interested in or may think that they are interested in. Robert completed project books for Fire Safety, "Crank it Up"- a small engines project, Genealogy year 3, Market Goat year 3 and Dairy calf year 1.

Dazzle is his calf for now - leasing her for this show year

He has worked very hard on each of these projects and I'm anxious to see how he does at the fair in 16 days. But here is a preview of his animals:

Butterscotch will be up for sale on August 9th

He has been walking, clipping and bathing these critters plus a few others this summer, not to mention feeding, cleaning and carrying LOTS of water to them. These projects really give him something to work at all summer, but it also requires that he keeps track of records, like feed bills and what the animals have eaten and when they have been treated, regardless if they are sick or preventative measures. They have to determine if they have made a profit or loss on their project and also set goals at the beginning and then decide if they reached those goals at the end.

The animals are a lot of work, but a lot of fun and can be incredibly rewarding.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Overnight at the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium

Last night and today we had the wonderful opportunity to get to spend the night at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium. We arrived yesterday as the zoo was closing and moved in. We were welcomed by 4 staff members who guided us through our overnight experiences. The staff brought out several creatures for our group to be introduced too. The we got a behind the scenes tour of the Sea Turtle Research area and the Aquarium. The kids got to play 2 different games including a scavenger hunt through the Aquarium. We then went for a snack and they had a craft for the kids too." I survived the PPG Aquarium Overnighter" pillowcases. We then slept in the education building and then this morning we got up had a simple breakfast meet a few more creatures and then moved our stuff back to our cars. Then we had the whole day at the zoo, to look at whatever we wanted too. Unfortunately, it rained all morning and by about 1pm we had quickly seen most of the zoo, but we were wet and cold and called it a day. But the kids enjoyed the experience. Overnight at the Zoo, animals and fun. What more could you ask for.

2 year old rescued Sea Turtle to possibly be re-released in the fall

1 year old Sea Turtle, still in rehab

Garrett watching the underside of a Sting Ray

An American Alligator that the kids got to meet

2 of Pittsburgh Zoo's Elephants
As I was preparing to go on our trip to the zoo, I found on their website that they have overnighters not only for groups, but also for families. If this sounds good to you, check it out Click on the Family Overnighters in the right hand column to see what is available. We had a great time. (This post is only from our experience and I just wanted to share it with others, your kids might like it too!)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Happy 6th Birthday Garrett

Happy 6th Birthday Garrett!!!!
Yesterday was Garrett's Day at least according to him, but we had to pick up his brother and travel back from Westmoreland County, but then in the evening, we were able to have a family picnic to celebrate his birthday. He got a few unusal items for a 6 year old, but they were all treasures to him. (He wanted a Pirate/ Treasure Chest birthday)

A Horse show...

A Pogo Stick...

And his own larger Wheelbarrow!

Family History outing

Well this week was an interesting week. The boys, Grandma joan and I went to Westmoreland county to do a little family history before dropping Robert off at the Westmoreland Showtime camp for 3 days. Thanks to Aunt Betty we got the "Cemetery Tour" and finally got to see Robert's great, great grandfather and mother's grave as well as numberous great great aunts and uncles.

On Thursday we took Robert, Garrett, Josh, Katy, Elizabeth & Grandma to the Westmoreland County Courthouse to look up marriage licenses. All of the kids got to use the microfilm machine and the girls were just as fascinated as Robert was with what we were finding. We then went and found Joan's grandparents in the cemetery, at the top of a large hill. We took the kids to Mammoth Park which has a great giant slide - it was pretty cool. Then we dropped off Robert.

Friday, Joan and I went to Fayette County Courthouse and found her parent's marriage license which was very cool. We went for lunch with Aunt Betty and then Joan and I went and picked up the kids and went for ice cream. That evening we got to wacth Elizabeth in a theaater production of "Cluck the Super Duck!" It was very cute and well done. We also got to watch an older group present "Twinderdella." At Aunt Laura's, Garrett got birthday cupcakes!

Saturday, we got things packed up and went for a little shopping and then we picked Robert up and came home. Garrett had a birthday party Saturday evening.

Just a few busy, but productive days! Now back to regular life and getting things done here at home!