Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I Love Comments

I love reading all of the comments people leave on my blog. Thank you so much.

I am enjoying blogging a lot and plan to continue. Please forgive me when I don't get back to you or come and visit you before you comment on my blog. I feel bad that this is happening.

I am trying to keep up and I don't want to stop the conversations. So please know that I appreciate all of you keeping up with my blog even though some of you have two hundred or more followers of your own. Have a great Wednesday and I'll visit you as often as I can. You are all so sweet.

Drum Lessons

My son (JB) expressed an interest in learning how to play the drums after several months of playing Rock Band II. Even after the X-Box bit the dust he continued to take out the drum set that goes with it and mimic playing the drums. He air drums all day which can be annoying, but I guess that's what kids do.

His uncle heard him say that he was interested and offered to pay for lessons. JB didn't take him seriously at first so he didn't say "Yes, I would like that". So it was let go. JB kept drumming without drums and I finally suggested that he call his uncle and ask him if he was still offering the lessons. So here we are finally getting started.

We went to check out the school last week and my BIL payed for five lessons.

The school is in an old building, but they have done a nice job with the inside to make it a functional school. There is a parking lot which is quite a plus for this part of the city. I am happy for that.

JB took pictures of a lot of things. I'm surprised he didn't take a picture of the resident cat named "Hella". I almost did. I love cats.

Here is JB sitting at the drums across from his instructor.

Here is the instructor at his drum set. We are told that he has travelled throughout most of the world playing drums and learning styles from other countries. He played with the Screaming Trees!! I have no knowledge of secular bands so I was clueless, but impressed. My BIL knew the band and said that Barrett, the teacher, is very good.

Here's JB standing by the sign as we left last Monday. He had his first lesson and I took him to our church to practice for thirty minutes today. Barrett gave him a CD with claves beating for him to play along with. I am not musical so it's a challenge to write about music beats, rhythms, tones, etc.

Barrett also gave JB a set of sticks. JB said they are Barrett's. Barrett couldn't find a good set in the schools supply box so he said "Here, use mine." Kids are impressed by these things. JB doesn't show much emotion, but I could tell he was impressed.

So that is a first for this family. Neither of our kids has taken any music lessons before so this is a new adventure. Join us as we begin drum school. Am I ready for the sound of drums? I do not know. Only God knows.=D

Monday, June 29, 2009

Youth Group Fun In The Sun

Last night after the baptism, church BBQ, and birthday bowling, I checked out my son's new youth group. New to him because he's going to be a freshman and the group leaders invited all the freshmen to join this month.

They start the evening with some fun games and that is the part I was there for. Next they have worship time and then a message is shared. My son seems to really enjoy himself.

We happen to have some very gifted young adults and older teens. They have been a part of game planning, youth worship and helping younger kids in Awana and theater camp for several years.

It has been fun to see them growing up these past nine years. I'm going to miss the ones going away to college. I hope that we'll have some more grow in to fine young helpers. God will provide for the youth. But the college kids will surely be missed.

Here is my son competing in the first game. Each kid had to carry a sponge full of water to this pic nic table and squeeze the sponge's contents into a soda bottle. There were four teams and I think the whole game lasted about ten minutes or so.

Here is JB's bestie, B, squeezing for his team. Come on, go in the bottle.

JB's team is in the lead. Squeeeeze it JB! Squeeeeze it!

The last man to squeeze and overflow the bottle was on JB's team. As a matter of fact it was a sweep. JB's team won all of the games last night. This is good for my son to experience.

So what do teens do with water when they are finished playing with it? You guessed it. Fling it, toss it, throw it and so on. JB was already wet and I got this picture of one fella getting water thrown on his back. What a reaction. Maybe the water was a little cold.

Next was put your head on a bat and twirl ten times then run around the light pole and back. Some kids fall over twirling. Some head out fast at an angle and then straighten it out, others twirl and head out, but fall in a heap, jump up and run. It's hilarious to see people do this on purpose. I think they want to conquer it. It's great for their confidence and it's fun.

Here's B running a little at an angle, but he recovered quickly.

JB twirling away, but he didn't get dizzy at all it seemed.

Next up was the three legged race. JB was paired with a girl. They did good.

JB's friend, J, and his partner landed in a heap on the sidewalk. Thank goodness they were in slow motion and they didn't get hurt.

The last game I watched was balloon stomp. This one was crazy. These teens are hopping and running in bare or stocking feet, stomping on each other's balloons, trying to pop them. This one girl was being attacked by three guys. They finally popped hers. In the end we could see that the guys had these tiny little balloons that just squished when they were stomped.

A great time was had by all. They all participated and cheered each other on and harassed each other and were pretty tired when I left. I hear they got a second wind and played more games after I left. Good, clean fun! Just how it should be. Praise God for these wonderful teens.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

There Was A Baptism Today

Isn't God the most incredible? This flower is real. I was told this is called Hoya Bella when a sweet
older gal gave me a clipping from her houseplant about fourteen years ago.

God has created such amazing and wonderful things for us to enjoy and this plant really drives that point home. Creation is such a great way to
show us His glory. He also opened it up for us to know Him.
We can find Him everywhere and he can forgive anything.
No sin is to great for God to forgive.

I'm building up to a salvation story here. Remember the post about our neighbor on June 16, 2009? I named it Fun To Watch Them Grow Up. I mentioned how he started coming to our church and that his sister was coming now and bringing her little boy.

Well today she was baptized!!! I didn't know who was going to be baptized today so when the screen in front of the baptismal was raised and there stood Miss J, I was so excited! It was tearful time. I was so happy and so amazed at how God is working in our neighbor's house. I'm not surprised, I'm amazed and overwhelmed with joy!!

Her testimony, as told by the pastor, Miss J is very shy, was heart warming. Her life has changed dramatically. Even better, was that her dad was there. I don't think he's been in church for a very long time.

So I've had an exciting day in the Lord. It is so neat to see folks coming to the Lord. One at a time. Thank you, Lord.

Birthday Bowling For Our Son

Our son (JB) will turn fourteen next week and of course friends go on vacations and it's hard to get them together for a summer birthday. So we suggested that our son celebrate this weekend before his besties go on vacations.

Well we still only rounded up two, but we only wanted to spend about $50.00 on his birthday event this year so it worked out fine. We'll grab the other guys for other fun stuff this summer when they're home.

Here are three besties. I think they are all fourteen. Well, will be by next week. The one on the left (B) our son has known since pre school. They just have great time when they get together.

The one on the right (J) just moved here from Columbia when one of our single men at church married his mom. They have actually been married over a year, but it took several months to get them here. We are glad he is here and we enjoy him a lot.

Tried to get them to ham it up, but only B was hamming it up today. Love those bowling shoes. J almost left the bowling alley with his on. I guess they were comfortable.

B is adjusting his shoe laces and trying to look tough. Never gonna happen sweetie pie!

J was so excited to get started he just started bowling on the wrong lane. They were all kind of excited and they were bowling so fast and wild we suggested relaxing and s-l-o-w-i-n-g d-o-w-n. They did better after that.

I think B just got his first strike! He won the first game.

JB kept sliding down to one knee. They all had some pretty interesting techniques. My hubby and I made suggestions, but they weren't having any of that. They were just having fun!

Here's me with my hubs of fifteen years. Next to Mochas, I love diet Coke! Mmmm Mmm!

You should have seen the couches they had in this place. This is our newest bowling alley and we were in the Black Light Room. There were about eight lanes and we were the only ones in there. The furnishings were different than the rest of the alley.

We were sitting on this cool, curvy black couch. There were two for each lane facing each other. There were some round foot stools that were for the next two bowlers up. It was just really nice. We were comfy.

Here's J sizing up the pins and preparing his next technique.

I think the boys were doing a victory dance. I think B got a spare that time.

JB looks a little frustrated. Geesh, it's only a game! Nah, he doesn't get that upset. I just caught him in a moment.

And I'll END it here. Yup, that's my son's rear end. What a technique he had going on there. He won the second game.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Childhood Haircuts

My kids have had a few haircuts, but I took pictures of my daughter getting her last haircut. Our friend cuts our hair for us and does a nice job.

Some of you bloggers will be experiencing your baby's first haircut sometime soon I'm sure. We I videotaped the first haircuts and took pictures and saved the hair. Learned that from my mom. I have some of my baby hair in an envelope somewhere around here.

I didn't save any hair this time, but she had a lot cut off for a change. I was surprised she went so much shorter. It looks nice when it's combed.

The first snips. Aaahhh! Oh it's okay. It'll be fine. You'll like it.

Half way finished!

The final combing. And my daughter loved it! That's what counts. Sorry I didn't take one more picture, but you've seen my daughter since she got her haircut if you've been reading any recent posts.

Well, there were no tears or locks saved just another day at our house. Enjoy!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Milestones for Mocha Momma's Kids

I'm having a hard time thinking of something to write so I looked at some pictures and found this one.

This is my kids and me after the Awana awards ceremony. They both had a milestone year. My daughter finished her fourth Awana book earning the Timothy award. My son finished his sixth Awana book, earning the Meritorious Award.

Now to me this is a big deal. When my son got his award I stood up and cheered and said "we did it". Because it took a lot of hard work on my part to get him to study on his own and he has learned to time himself and study and complete this on his own.

My daughter is younger and I'm still in the hard work stage of motivating, nagging and threatening. I try not to threaten or nag, but I do.

More importantly is for our kids to claim a relationship of their own with the Lord. Not mine or Awana's or anyone elses. We've raised them to be christians, but it must be their choice to follow Him.

I'm glad they have memorized so much scripture, but now it's time for them to really put it to work in their lives. Good job kids! I'm proud of you.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Pinching Pennies

The other day a lady appeared on T.V. via one of our local stations to tell us dimwits how to make things last longer which will help us save money.

This is what she shared. Add a little water to the soap pump bottle when it gets low so as to use up all the soap in the bottle. Yes, good idea.

Next she shared about heating up the syrup by running the bottle under hot water to soften the syrup and then you can poor it out. Geesh! She could save money by putting it in the micro for a couple of seconds instead of running it under hot water.

This is all I heard. I had to laugh out loud for a bit then because I've been doing this and more for years. I thought everyone did these things. I know you ladies do all kinds of things to save a penny here and there. We could have done this local commercial to all the dimwits folks out there in T.V. land ourselves and done a better job.

We use washable storage containers for years like my old friends up in the corner there. We use bar soap and save the little pieces to make another usable hunk. I used to even melt excess wax out of candle holders and jars to make new candles. Not so much anymore though.

Do you use your tea bag more than once? How about refilling the water bottles (but that's bad for your health now) or using a sports bottle? Re-using pots from flowers? Trying to save your garden flowers over until the next year just to see if how many make it?

I'll bet some of you make crafts with cans, lids, old jeans, shells and glass from the beach, etc. You name it, I'm sure some of you have done it.

So if we've been doing these money saving things for all these years, how can we save more money now? We need new ideas. Come on Martha Stewart ya right, get the show on the road. We ladies need real money saving ideas.

If you feel so inclined, please share your money saving ideas. I have barely brushed the surface with my mini offering of ideas. Have fun with this ladies. It will help others out too.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sixth Photo Challenge From Art's Chili

Kat over at Art's Chili has challenged me to post the sixth photo that I have in the sixth file folder I have on my computer. I'll tell the story that goes with the photo and then explain the rules for the five people I select to challenge.

This is a random picture of my (almost fourteen year old) son. I believe I took it at my parent's house when we celebrated Mom's and my birthdays and Easter this year.

I'll just chat about my son since it's just a random picture. He is our first born. He has been homeschooled since he finished one year of preschool. He's a pretty serious guy, but has silly moments (or hours when he's with some of his friends).

I remember that I couldn't wait for him to be noisy and talk when he was a toddler, but he has never been noisy or talked a lot. Finally he would say a word or two about twucks, tractos, bulldozers, and aopwanes.

He would get so excited when the garbage truck came, he would stand at the front screen door and literally shake and point and and say, "Twuck, twuck..." you get the picture.

Of course he would be holding his Meme and his two fingers would be in his mouth. He might even be in just a diaper and a T-shirt, but he was at the door every week. Cool thing was that the garbage man (I know there's a better name for him) would wave to him.

He started learning to read at age four and just took off with it. He still enjoys reading. He is good at getting his work finished and focus's very well on what he's doing.

He also enjoys computer related activities. He plays all kinds of games on various game consols. He is learning from his dad how to fix these things too. They seem to break quite often.

He has memorized many scriptures and seems to very good at it. He has earned the Meritorious Award for completing six Awana Club books. A youth group we attend weekly during the school year.

He is anxious to be a freshman in high school and to start going to public school. I like the school because it is small. So small the whole ninth grade class goes to every class together. I'm excited to see him growing into a fine young man, but it is hard to let go after nine years of homeschooling him.

So that's my story about my son that goes with the picture.

Now I select these five bloggy friends to take the sixth photo challenge:

1) Erica at Scottsville because I know she has a lot of pictures.

2) Nan at Momstheword because she got me into this blogging.

3) Hope at My Hope Is In The Lord because she has some cool oldie pictures and family pix.

4) Beth in NC at I'm Heading Towards My Destiny because she seems like another nice chick.

5) Karen at Goose Hill Farm because she's so down to earth and has a farm.

1) Go to your photo folders
2) Select the sixth file folder
3) Open it and select the sixth photo in that file folder
4) Write a story for that picture, post it and
5) Select five bloggy friends to tag
6) Be sure to let them know they've been tagged

Have fun with it and I'll be looking for your sixth photos and stories. Thanks

A Walk Down Memory Lane With Dubb Dubb

Wednesday's Walk Down Memory Lane

Come for a walk with me down Memory Lane!
And if you have a "Memory Lane" post, head on over to Scottsville to join in on the fun!

This is a post for "Memory Lane" over at Erica's blog, Scottsville. This is my first attempt so here goes.

This picture isn't old and neither am I (Ha), but the seal sculpture brings back memories of my childhood.

This sculpture is of Dubb Dubb the seal who used to live at the zoo. We recently went to the zoo for a visit and this sculpture caught my attention.

You see, Dubb Dubb was every child's favorite seal when I was a kid. He was huge. This sculpture doesn't show him life size. I'm talkin' he was huge. Overfed is more like it. People could buy fish and feed Dubb Dubb all day long.

He would do tricks and really try to get your attention. He would also catch the fish real well. If someone wanted to feed the other seals, Dubb Dubb would crowd the other seals and get the fish anyway.

I loved standing by the open tank watching Dubb Dubb go through his antics of clapping his fins, waving and twirling in the water. All of the children would get so excited to see Dubb Dubb the seal perform for food.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Taking An Evening Off. I'll Be Back Soon.

I'm taking today off because I'm not feeling too good. I had a tooth pulled this morning. The pain meds made me feel loopy and then sick.

Laying down has been the best thing so far. God is carrying me so you'll only see His footprints in the sand tonight.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Random Thoughts For Today

"This is the day that the Lord hath made. I will rejoice and be glad in it" Psalm 118:24. I learned this Bible verse as a song years ago.

It just came to mind because today brought to mind some of the things that may or may not need to be done and the cost of such things.

I know that God created each day fresh and new. And He can help us make the decisions we need to make.

This is God's day, not the orthodontist's, or optometrist's, or the oral surgeon's, or the doctor's. I can only depend on God to give me the straight forward truth and answers. These folks have knowledge beyond my own, but God has the answers I need.

My day wasn't really fowled up, but it just hit me in the last hour or so all that is going on here. I got concerned and then realized that I need to give it back to God because he has every answer, even for every day decisions like the ones we need to make.

This morning we went to the orthodontist for my daughter. The Dr. showed me x-rays, drawings, a mold of my daughter's teeth and all the types of things he wants to put in her mouth as soon as possible before she grows too much and these things are harder to do when kids get older and on and on. He talked for about forty minutes. I was overwhelmed!

Then the receptionist came in to explain the cost and payment schedule and extra costs if the payments are late. She talked for about twenty minutes. These are very nice people, but they are also in a business to sell a product. Only God can tell us how necessary this all is.

I left there feeling guilty because I didn't make a decision then and there. After all the Dr. "...would do this for his own daughter" and he wouldn't recommend something he "...wouldn't do with his own daughter's teeth."

I know guilt is not something to hang onto so I chatted with God most of the way home and He reminded me that He had the answer and not to worry. It's still overwhelming to think about.

I explained some of it to my hubby whom I thought would say "No way!" He didn't say much. I think he needs to mull it over for a while too.

So the next adventure was to the Drumming School. My BIL has offered to pay for lessons for our son. I couldn't pass up an offer like that so we went to check the place out. It all seemed okay and we signed up for a lesson for next Monday. This is a good thing after this morning's news.

Of course we couldn't find the freeway on the way back.
You see, around here there are a lot of one way streets and bridges and construction so you rarely get to go home the same way you came. I found a long way to get back to the freeway. Next time I'll ask for directions to get back out of there to the freeway.

Next up is my appointment tomorrow to get a molar pulled. I'm crying already because I already had the same one on the other side of my mouth pulled. I'll be missing two bottom major chewing surfaces. Oh dear, will I have to be on soft foods for the rest of my life? No, I'll be fine.

The only thing is, what can we afford as replacement teeth? Only God knows. We'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

I just feel like things are getting away from me. I also need stronger glasses which I won't wear full time because I'm not in denial. I'm not a control freak either. Anyway, just a few things on my plate along with the job search.

So I'm asking you bloggy friends to send up some prayers to the Lord Jesus for these decisions that need to be made. Thanks.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day for my Hubby

After church today, we had lunch and then the kids brought out the big gift we got for their dad.
Here he sits waiting anxiously for the kids to bring out the gift.
He rarely gets anxious. Only before job interviews. And he's had three or four of those lately.

In case you wondered, he is waiting one more week on answers from
two of those interviews.
He was not accepted for the job from the very first
interview, but he didn't want that one so much anyway. I'll keep you posted. Please remember he has a job so we aren't in a crisis.

I need a job to keep us out of a crisis, though God has brought us this far, I know He'll be faithful to take care of us in this respect as long as we need it.

So here it is, a hammock. I got this idea from another blogger (I feel bad, but I can't remember which of you it was) just in time for Dad's Day.

How many of Mocha Momma's family members does it take to put a hammock frame together? I don't see the cat or hamster so I guess it takes three. They had to put some pins in place and that's about it.
First up to try it out was our daughter. It was a little topsey turvey for a minute.

Then hubby rocked and rolled until he actually flipped sideways. I missed it! He didn't get hurt because it was kind of slow motion flip. I was messing with the camera and missed the best part.

Then our son tried it out with drumsticks in hands. He hasn't started playing the drums yet, except for Rock Band II, but we are looking into it tomorrow.

Of course the king had to try it out. It was pretty funny watching him sniff and hang on and get low so it wouldn't flip back and forth on him. Finally it tipped too far for him and he got off.
I did actually try it out too, but that was after everyone was busy or gone doing something else.
I took it outside and got on it and relaxed for a minute or two.
When I came back inside the weather changed dramatically. I heard a sound and looked out side to see poor Mr. Hammock flipped over because it was so windy and raining too.
Hubs came home and put it away because he didn't want it to get wet
anymore. I explained that it is quite okay to stay out in the rain, but
it is his gift so I'll let him be.
Another year as dad has gone by. I can't believe how far we've come
from two proud and scared thirty something adults to the proud
parents of a teen and pre-teen. What does God have in His plan for us?
When I find out I'll let ya know.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Celebrating Father's Day 2009

Happy Father's Day!! I hope you are finding time for dad this weekend. I'm so thankful for a dad who has been involved in my life and my children's lives.

I'm so happy that my kids have a dad who is involved in their lives. It's tough enough being a kid out there without the added stress of a dad who isn't involved.

We celebrated with my folks today and my sister and her hubby. We'll celebrate some more tomorrow with my hubby.
My hubby BBQ'd so dad didn't have to and we're all out back of their house looking at their new raised garden boxes.

My daughter is looking for the zucchini squash in this bush. There were about six little ones in there and more buds than I could count quickly.

Mom's pointing out some greens she called them Kohlrabi, I think. She has cooked greens since the seventies. There are my favorite beet greens right in the middle. I'm not much for cooked spinach, but fresh from the garden, it's good raw or cooked. The spinach is behind her.

Here are the three raised garden boxes. My dad calls them "coffins". These were just put in this past winter to replace a cracked patio. Their garden was a big portion of the back lawn.
I'll mention here that our family moved into this house forty-five years ago. It's had a lot of work done because it is nearing 100 years old, but no interior remodeling at all. Just one bathroom for three to five kids and two adults all those years.
My folks decided the large garden was too much work and filled it in with grass and had these boxes put in. I'm glad they were able to come up with this. I hadn't really thought that they wouldn't be able to garden anymore, but getting down on the ground
is not an option for either of them anymore.
My BIL just has more grass to mow, but I don't think he minds too much. Bless his heart!

My sister showed up bringing the rest of dinner. And gifts for dad's garden. Here she is giving hugs to our kids.
Here are some of the flowers she brought. There were many more and beautiful.

Some fresh lettuce from the garden for our hamburgers. This lettuce is tender and good. I love it!

Here's the spread. Burgers hot dogs and chicken in the back. Lettuce, tomatoes, strawberries and a salad, and melons with cherries.

After the home made pie and ice cream, we gave the dad's their gifts. My daughter made this card for her dad.

Sorry this is so dark, but my dad is there on the left and my hubby on the right. We're giving my hubby his big gift tomorrow.

My BIL came later and I didn't get a picture of him today so I grabbed this one of he and my dad at our last birthday celebration.

That's about all we do. We like to prepare the food, eat the food and sit around and talk. The kids get a little bored, but they're getting better about not whining. We used paper plates today so not a lot of dishes which was nice.
So I'll leave you with a few verses to remember as you celebrate Father's Day with your family.
Thanking God for my dad and my husband.

Psalm 103:13 As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; (NIV)
Proverbs 23:22 Listen to your father, who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old. (NIV)