Another Post of Dipic Proportion
Whoever said, “gardening is good for the soul” was totally right. I had no idea I would actually enjoy it, but I do. Last night I was telling Geoff that I don’t know what I’m going to do in the winter that will keep me so pleasantly and productively occupied.
Look as these monster squash; that’s Emmiko’s hand you see about to saw into it.
Ryann has been using the squash to make the best zucchini bread I’ve ever had, and today I made a chicken and brown rice squash casserole (served with a fresh spinach salad, which was harvested this morning by the Dipster). And by the way, thanks for all the happy regards you sent; my son was giddy about getting so many messages
Speaking of the Dip, I liked how his daddy’s shirt matched his birthday cake
And isn’t that a fancy cake? It was made especially by Dip. We have had a tradition since all my kids were super little where every year they get to pick out their own cake and then make it with me. Coie got magical re-lighting candles for him and it was pretty funny watching him hyperventilate.
And still speaking of the Dip, check out my big seven-year-old. He spent literally hours mowing the lawn this morning. He did a fine job, too. He’s a hard worker just like his daddems
And lastly here is a picture of a lovely blackberry pie I made. It was tres’ mundo magnific’. Look how purpley the pie innards are, they’re practically fluorescent. My kids found some wild blackberry bushes at the end of our driveway and I told them if they got four cups worth I’d bake ‘em a pie. I think I actually like summertime now; I never used to before.
June 28th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
A Wonder Works Birthday
My son, Dippy, is turning seven tomorrow. Despite that fact, last week he was outside licking the sidewalk to see what it tasted like. I love this boy. He is odd, but I think that makes me love him even more. Someday he will very likely no longer lick sidewalks or grin at me without his two front teeth, and I am enjoying every single day of who he is now.
In honor of the great feat of turning seven, our family, and kait, plus our dear friends, Tyler and Tanner B, spent the day at the perfect place for my curious and very energetic birthday boy. It’s a museum called WonderWorks – you could literally spend several days in this place and never run out of things to do. I’m too lazy to explain it all, so here’s a link with a video that shows some details iffen you want ‘em. Jessica, if you’re reading this, I’d definitely recommend that you and your Mr. Preston pencil this into your itinerary when you’re out here. You guys would *love* it.
Here we are (minus me) at the entrance, yes, the building is built upside down like that on purpose:
Here is dippy with two of his best friends in the world. The Burggraf boys were kind enough to spend the day with us and that meant the world to Dippy. These boys have always paid so much kind attention to Dippy. They talk to him like he’s ‘one of the guys’ and they have won a loyal little fan for life. You’ll notice that Dippy has his tongue out in this picture (no doubt he is looking for something else to lick besides the parking lot)
This place had activities for literally every age. Here is James (with help from coie) hoisting himself up with a pulley:
Here is Dip getting ready to climb a rock wall. It was very high. I am sure he was much less nervous than he looks
Once he got started, he loved it, and he got pretty high
Of course his brother Bobo scrambled up the wall like a spider. And you should have seen Ryann climb it! That girl is fast and STRONG
Here is Tyler and Bo about to ride in a jet fighter simulator ride. They also rode a roller coaster simulator. The pod they are in was locked shut and then it spun all around and swung into the air. It should have been called a Spin and Spew – which is surely what I would have done had I tried it. Coie pointed out that together Ty and Bo make: Tae Bo. Clever
I don’t know what this next thing was but Ryann and Emmiko loved it. It swung back and forth and then spun round and round sort of like a Ferris Wheel, except upside down; there were bicycle pedals to control the ‘spin’. Ryann and Tanner almost got the thing to stick straight upside down in the air
This was a cute little computer screen touch painting thing. I would LOVE to have one of these at home!
Here is Coie and Kait playing in the Bubble Room. I think they had more fun than James
There was so much to do – they also had a very cool museum with lots of mind-bender art. After three and a half hours I was getting hungry and cranky; which was exactly when Bobo decided to get lost. Tyler finally found him (and then he had to go back and find Coie who was looking for Bo) and we drove straight to Little Ceasers and mowed thru three pizzas.
The after-effects Wonderworks has on a three year old
The after-effects Wonderworks has on a seven year old
The after effects Wonderworks has on an eleven year old
Luckily, our driver is neither three, seven nor eleven. We made it safely home.
What a perfect way to spend a birthday.
Happy Birthday, Dipsters!
June 26th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
There's Nothing Better Than A Party
Today we spent the day with a marvelous group of friends celebrating Veronica G’s birthday. There is nothing funner than a dance!
Getting the Ryann ready
here is Coie and Kait …and Dippy, who looks like he is about to propose
it didn’t take long for the dancing to begin!
Doesn’t BoBo have a lovely tie? He insisted on wearing it
Here is lovely Emmiko and lovely Coie. You can tell they are sisters because they are the only ones in the room who are barefoot.
I told Dippy that he *had* to dance, so he was walking nervously around the room trying to find a partner, and all of a sudden this little sweet potato came up and asked him to dance. He was so excited that *he* didn’t have to do the askng. My daugther was standing near by as they stood there holding hands waiting for the next dance; she told me that all of a sudden the little girl dropped Dip’s hand and ran over to a man then pointed back over at Dippy and said, "look daddy! I get to dance with him!"; then she ran back over and grabbed his hand again.
Daniel Estabrook: "…so you see, ladies, I determined that it was a milk snake rather than a general king snake on account of…"
No party is a real party without all five of the Estabrook boys (six including their dad). The lone Lady Estabrook spent most of the afternoon saying, "don’t embarass me" (to all six of her men)
Kait the great did not want for partners. She had a steady stream of gentlemen who kept her very much occupied throughout the ball. She was exhausted when we got home! She is a lovely girl and a lovely dancer.
The lovely and elegant Ryann
The lovely and elegant James
The lovely and elegant Emmiko with the classic look that always makes me very very very nervous
On our way home, Coie started making plans for a grand Christmas Ball this December. Wouldn’t that be fun?
June 23rd, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
I used to make this dish all the time when I was on the Atkins diet (I lost like 50 pounds on that diet). It’s easy (the dish, not the weight loss) … you stick your yellow and green squashies in a pan with like a half a cup of butter on medium high and then when it’s cooked – don’t let it get squishy, it only takes five minutes or so – then add 2 or 3 cloves of garlic. You don’t want your garlic to over cook otherwise it’ll be grodie. Ok, so soon as you’ve swished around the garlic in the pan with the squash then turn off the heat and add several heaping tablespoons of Parmesan cheese till it gets gooey and melty. Y.U.M.
I’m not too sure what else to do with squash. Coie puts it in spaghetti sauce.
We’re having a grand time with Kait the Great. I hope her family is not missing her too much. We are keeping her busy:
Here she is making a skirt for the party we are going to this Saturday. Doesn’t she have pretty auburn curly hair? She has the best hair I’ve ever seen on a human. And I’m not just saying that because she brought me another present (Bibleopoly! Yay!)
And, on a sad note… Poor Ryann; one of her five ducks died today (yes, Shay, it was Love – we thought she was doing so much better). She is outside burying it right now. Farm Life isn’t all milk and eggs – it definitely has its rough side, too.
June 21st, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
A Study in Potential Suitors plus a weather report
We’ve been getting these phenomenal thunderstorms that come out of nowhere. It is very cool.
So I finally *did* get to watch the rest of Our Mutual Friend, based on the novel by Charles Dickens. I really liked the whole thing. On our way to
Anyways, what we were mainly talking about was how different modern ‘love stories’ of today measured up to Victorian Age ‘love stories’ of the past. In the older stories, one mostly married for money and rank, while today’s love stories are fully “emotion and feelings” driven. But what was *really* interesting to note was that in the literary works we’ve read — past and present — we’ve yet to see a young fictional couple marry because of the great love they shared for Christ. I guess that’s not a very marketable concept, but I know it’s out there. It is exactly why I married Geoff. He personified everything that was good, lovely, noble, and true. Simply put, even tho I was a foolish girl without a full understanding Christ, I was captivated by my husband’s incredible love for the God I adored.
I was talking to my girls about that, and brought up the verse in Proverbs (31:30): “Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord shall be praised”. It seems this world (and even the church) chases hard after beauty and charm. We talked how that also applies to what women look for – charming, clever witty young men are adored and handsome young men are sighed after.
Clever, witty and handsome; I asked if these were characteristics my girls would seek in a man when they were ready to marry. I was happy to hear that those attributes were not very highly esteemed. I told them likewise that any young man who was obviously on the market for a charming wife or a beautiful wife would be off of the Igarashi-Son-in-Law-Candidate-List. Any potential suitor who was looking for charm and beauty instead of being driven in their search for “a woman who feared the Lord” would simply not be worth getting.
At this point my oldest son Bo piped up and said, “Poor Coie…she’ll never get married”. We all turned to him and collectively shouted, “What?? Why not??” And he shrugged his shoulders and said, “Because she’s so charming”. Ha, I couldn’t argue with the boy and I had to amend my sermonette: "Charm and beauty can be an added bonus sometimes"
Ok, this was fun; despite my long, drawn out lecture, later that week I took this quiz – “Who is your Jane Austen husband?” And just guess who I scored as being married to… Mr. Knightly. Yep, the best fictional male character ever created (by Jane Austen or any other author). It’s funny because that is who Coie has always said she wants to marry: A Mr. Knightly. Maybe in twenty to forty years she’ll luck out and get her wish.
June 19th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
Our Mutual Friend, plus other odds n ends
The king has returned! Six whole days without Mr. Sane is too long. I almost typed in Mr. Sanity, but it looked too much like sanitary… and while he is the most sanitary human I’ve ever met (to the point of awkward oddity), it was not the point I was endeavoring to elucidate.
Um… where was I? ah! So how was your Father’s Day? I could write out an extensive tribute, but Coie beat me to the punch this year and said things far more touching than I could have. He is a dream come true. *sighhhhhhh*
So, now that he is home, life feels back to normal. We had a splendid, first-class time with the
And the fun continues, for this Saturday we are going to a ball. Yippeee! An 1800’s Birthday Party Ball with English Country Dances. We are all excited about that. Happy Birthday, Veronica! But sadly, it is on the same day as this wedding. Good luck, Maria! I am sorry we will not be there! I hope the weather is accommodating.
Lastly, I think I should turn off my comments more often. I got *the* nicest emails from you guys, “the fellowship of the herd”. It was interesting to get emails from both perspectives – some had been doing the ‘shunning’ and others had been on the receiving end of a ‘shunning’. Thanks for the emails, it was really encouraging to me.
And I would like to stress, there are most definitely times when actual sin does need to be confronted or addressed—and there are times when even true fellowship will be broken – but never EVER ever does that allow coldness, unkindness, or a spirit of haughtiness or disdain. If we truly love our brother they will see us grieved over their sin and grieved over the loss of relationship and know that our hearts desire is to see them restored. Anything less is selfish, self-bloated hypocrisy.
JAMES 2: 13 — For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment.
Lastly last – Charles Dickens is awesome. Has anybody seen the BBC version of Our Mutual Friend? It is excellent. I am so mad, tho, because we rented it from our library and the second half the DVD is broken — and the local video stores don’t carry it. ARGHHHH! Don’t tell me how it ends. I need to find out a way to find another copy (without buying it). I love Victorian epics. I never considered Dickens as an author I would like, but Our Mutual Friend is an incredible work!
Truly last… we are also having a special guest staying with us this week. Coie will pick her up this afternoon. What fun!! She lives in Florida but she called Coie last week and said, "Hi, can I come over?" and Coie said, "SURE!" and she said, "I’m serious" and Coie said, "Me too!". We are a big fan of that girl. She is so adventurous; it’ll be fun to have her again. Plus, she always brings me presents.
June 18th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
I Wanna Be A Buffalo
**edit and update** the video is now linked to below
Ok, so I was laying in bed trying to sleep, missing Geoff and totally wishing I was a buffalo – yes, a buffalo – I will explain that in a minute. Anyways, as I was wishing to be in a buffalo herd I was also thinking about my little sister. Now just so you know, this is a very personal blog post where you will get to see my very ugly side; it may induce you to never come back. But none-the-less, it is what it is, and I’ve turned off the comments for this post because I don’t think I could take it. This is hard enough as it is.
About twelve years ago my mom died and my eleven year old sister ended up coming to live with me. That girl drove me nuts. NUTS. In her short career as ‘my daughter’ we butted heads like nothing you’ve ever seen. The short story is that eventually she ran away and went to live with our biological father. I was crushed, devastated, humiliated, angry and disgusted with her. Soon after, we were partially reconciled, and I say ‘partially’ because I ended up putting her on ‘probation’. This meant that even tho she begged forgiveness and cried quarts for hurting us so badly, I kept track of any subsequent dumb decisions she made and when I thought she was being immature / disrespectful / unwise / worldly or flat out ‘in sin’, I would pull away from her and treat her with disdain. Yes, I know that is sick, but it does have a happy ending if you care to keep reading. Anyways, I cut her off last year when she did something that ended up ‘causing an issue’ which really upset me. And since she did not ‘repent’ immediately for it I wrote her off, ignored her emails, or would give these cold condescending civil replies if she tried to contact me. Her husband (who was her fiancé at the time) even came for a visit when he was in the area for business and I treated him with a cool indifference – despite the fact that he was completely alone and was trying his hardest to be a part of our family. GROSS! The fact that this man continues to be kind to me is fully astonishing.
Ok, here is where things turn around. About three months ago God totally started opening my eyes to what a pig I am and how totally OFF my perception has been with ’dealing with those in sin or supposed sin’. Believe it or not, I had convinced myself that ‘shunning / ignoring’ a person was the appropriate way to act. Good Lord I am an idiot. I had been deceived into thinking that being ‘unkind’ was actually ‘kindness’ because it caused a person to ‘turn from sin’. WHAT. A. LIE.
The truth is, if we claim Christ, we are never justified in being unkind, cold, indifferent, or cruel. Even if true serious sin needs to addressed or dealt with, it should be in love – and love is kind, gentle, long-suffering, it seeks to elevate others, it is hopeful, assumes the best, etc. .
When I finally got a clue, I approached my little sister in the simple way of emailing her and asking her how the wedding plans were coming along (believe it or not, she had called several months earlier and left a message that she got engaged but I had ignored the call because she had not ‘repented for gossiping’ yet — gossip… how ironic). So anyways, like I said, when I started getting a clue, I emailed her and said something along the lines of, “hey, I was thinking about you and I hope the wedding plans are going well”. That simple email caused her to break down and cry and cry and cry. She wrote me these long letters thanking me so much for caring about the wedding enough to ask about it. She sent gifts in the mail and continual emails thanking me for wanting to ‘share this special time with her’ and for being a part of her life. Yes, I know. Why do think I’ve turned off the comments here? It shames me like you would not believe, and I write this in tears of humiliation and regret.
Ok, I’m almost done: I was thinking about her tonight because every few days or so she sends me these emails apologizing for things that she said or has posted on her blog. CONSTANTLY. Why do you think she does this? I know why. Her last email said something to the effect of, “I am so amazed that you love me, I am such an idiot and always do such stupid things that I am constantly regretting from one minute to the next. Thank you for loving me despite that”. Ok… that right there put me over the edge. The only thing that calms my sick stomach is knowing that God still loves ME enough to open my eyes and help me change. How unlike Him I have been! He is so patient, SO PATIENT — while I have been so quick to judge and condemn those who should be able to trust me and rely on me and count on me to ‘bear with them’.
I came THIS close to missing my sister’s entire wedding because of my foolishness. She called me the day of her wedding and said how terribly she missed our mom and how it meant the world to her knowing that I was rejoicing with her and praying for her on that day.
Ok, so you’re still wondering about the whole buffalo thing, yes?
Well, me and Coie watched this video today on YouTube. It was a real video. There was this herd of buffalo on the bank of this river, right? And all of a sudden these lions came running over and picked off one the small little baby buffalo. These four lions started dragging it away but they were too close to the river so the baby and a couple of the lions ended up falling in. Well even in the water these lions wouldn’t let go – they kept biting at the baby and trying to drag it back up the bank. BUT THEN these two crocodiles came over and grabbed the baby and started pulling it BACK INTO the river. A fight ensued and the lions were able to pull the baby buffalo (literally) to shore. The baby buffalo was a goner, the baby buffalo was done for, but then… but THEN… you seriously need to watch the video to believe this, but THEN the entire herd of buffalo turns around and comes BACK into the picture. Slowly, side by side, these buffalo approached the lions. There was a short stand off but then the buffalo began charging at the lions and the baby buffalo got UP and ran into the safety of its family. That herd of buffalo displayed more corporate Christ-like behaviour than *many* who proclaim Christ. They did not abandon the baby – they FOUGHT for that baby and risked their own safety to get him back.
Naturally, the analogy breaks down if you take it too far, but when me and Coie were watching that video clip I was almost in tears, and I told her. “I totally want to be a buffalo in a herd like that”.
My husband says that Christians are known ‘to eat their own’. How can that be when God’s Word says the world will know us because of our great love for one another?
Happy Birthday, Jessica, you are my dear dear dear lovely girl. I write this publicly for your sake alone… because I want you to know how much i love you. And because I want you to STOP constantly asking me if you’re in trouble.
June 15th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 1 Comments
Is There a Doctor in the House?
** Update and Edit *** I got an email today asking where all of my articles went from the TOS website. I checked, and yep, they are gone, so I will change the link on my side bar to this page on Crosswalk. All of my articles can be found there. Sorry for any confusion! I would have changed it sooner but I didn’t know — it’s the story of my life!
So anyways, I was just sitting in my big comfy chair, reading a book and minding my own business when all of a sudden my left forearm started FREAKING OUT. Seriously, the muscle under my skin, near my wrist, just started popping all around like there was a claustrophobic Mexican Jumping bean stuck in there.
Naturally, true to my nature, I started flailing about and screaming for Coie – who, at the realization of my dire medical malady, began laughing her silly head off. And what does Ryann do? She runs to get a camera. We were all riveted to the wrist as we waited for it to start jumping — and when it started its little McHammer routine we all, respectively, screamed in horror; laughed like a loon; and indifferently snapped pictures. Coie was able to stop the Amazing Jumping Wrist Muscle by wrenching my hand backwards and holding it steady for about a half hour. She sprained it in the process, but I confess, a sprained wrist is more agreeable than a creepy wrist muscle trying to break out and lead a life of its own.
Anybody ever heard of such a thing? What in the *world* is wrong with me (and by that, I specifically mean my wrist)?
Lastly, a third ‘congratulation’ is in order. Apparently, it is Good News for Sisters week, for this morning I got an email announcing that Gena is expecting another little one. How exciting! My heartiest glad tidings goes out to the whole family.
June 13th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
Thou Shalt Not Covet, and other stuff
It’s true. I confess. I have total Garden Envy. I am convinced that raised bed and container gardens, surrounded by a charming white picket fence, is *the* way to go for the Lazy, Incompetent, Nimrod Gardener i.e. ME. I wish to have a garden that looks like this one (you’ll have to scroll down past the interview with the goat to see the pictures which hath provoked my great greenness of envy).
However, you will be proud to know that I have a mammoth tomato plant growing on my deck. It’s HUGE. It grows because we love it so much. Here is emmiko giving it a hug
and here are several colossal squashesses – both of the yellow and green variety.
I was afraid of overcrowding my plants; and now as you can see, in my non-crowding zeal, I’ve ended up with a relatively lonely rectangle of dirt. I imagine there is a life lesson buried in that illustration somewhere.
Ok, wake up you non-gardening types; I’m on to a different boring topic now. There is an occasion to congratulate me, for in less than 90 days (among other things) our family will be proud recipients of full health insurance coverage. This is on account of my tremendously excellent hard working diligent persevering handsome husband’s fabulous new job. This week he is training in
I am excited for my husband – AND it gets better because his direct manager is a very kind man who is a total believer with a heart for the Lord. We are praising God for this incredible opportunity and I am very proud because my husband was picked to represent this area out of a whole slew of applicants. Is that not exciting? We are very happy and praising God for his kindness and provision.
PS Congrats to my little sister who has officially been Mrs. Preston for TWO WEEKS. They just got back from their honeymoon cruise. I am excited for them. Look at all the loot they got! Aren’t they cute?
PS Congrats to my little sister who has officially been Mrs. Preston for TWO WEEKS. They just got back from their honeymoon cruise. I am excited for them. Look at all the loot they got! Aren’t they cute?
June 11th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments
The Injustice of It All
Oh fer land ‘sakes. I cannot *believe* that I am going to blog about
As a disclaimer… I don’t seek out this sort of tripe. I don’t have a tv and CNN is my homepage so I can get the news at a glance when I log on. And what is the reigning story of the week? The seething outrage of “the people” at Paris Hilton’s early release.
Even Rush Limbaugh is talking about it. Is there no escape? Apparently, the ‘normal average’ person is hopping mad that
It is human nature to want justice. God’s law set up an extensive system for justice. We all have a tendency to seethe when somebody who SHOULD get knocked off their high horse instead just gets to ride off into the sunset still securely saddled onto said high horse. It makes us crazy. We demand justice. We demand full payment. It is only right that those high falutin’, rich, spoiled brats get a taste of ‘the real world’ that the rest of us have to suffer thru. We want to see Paris Hilton with no make up on, eating prison food, in rough prison clothes, cleaning toilets. "It would serve her right."
Boy oh boy am I glad that God does not grant these types of wishes.
Do you realize that much of the world does not have running water or electricity? I always hear reports that Americans are hated all around the world. I bet we are. They are wishing that WE (yes, me and you) would get what they think WE deserve. While I love
I, for one, am incredibly grateful for common grace. I am glad for the luxuries I have (food in the fridge, an air conditioner, a house with more than one room, a toilet that flushes). I will not wish for *anybody* to get knocked off their high horse. Instead I will pray that God would reveal my own faults, hypocrisy, short-comings and pride — and that He will show me in a gentle, non violent way. I don’t want to get chastised heavily, nor should I wish ‘heavy chastisement’ for others. It reminds me of the parable where the king forgave a debtor of his great debt… and then that same debtor turns around and has NO mercy for his fellow man who owes him a small amount.
I thank Him *mightily* that He does not ‘give me what I deserve’.
June 8th, 2007 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments