Posts Tagged ‘Family’

I am *SO* thankful for so many things this year –

for a loving husband of 34 years who fell in love with me 39 years ago and was willing to wait for me to graduate from high school and for him from college before we got married (we were friends before we were actually *interested* in each other),
for five beautiful, wonderful children and the extra-special blessing this year of a daughter-in-law who adores my son,
for an “adopted” daughter who has learned to believe in herself and also to say “I love you” and give terrific hugs,
for a sister who is a breast cancer survivor,
for a brother who is a cancer warrior just now,
for an aunt who is like no other, and we wouldn’t have her any other way (those of you who know Aunt Betty know what I mean),
for being able to stay in touch with my niece & nephew and my great-nieces through Facebook,
for renewed insurance eligibility for our daughter, Sara, (Thank You, LORD!)
for godly, loving friends who know all my faults (well, most of them) and love me anyway,
for a warm, loving, PRAYING body of believers who are willing and ready to stand in the gap for anyone in need of prayer,
for the awesome privilege of playing my flute for God’s glory each Sunday morning in the worship service at Zion,
for the joy of working with young children and their parents in my Kindermusik classes – it renews me each and every day to sing and dance with them,
for the blessing of sharing music with my piano students and instilling in them the belief that they are only limited by how self-disciplined or self-motivated they are or are not,
for the magic of teaching Simply Music to my beginning students and seeing the magic happen right before my eyes – who would ever have thought students could learn so easily and effortlessly?
for the blessing of music which weaves through my life every day from the time I get up until I lay my head down each night,
for my Lord Jesus Christ – Soli Deo Gloria!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my family and friends! May this day be filled with love, laughter, and beautiful memories that will last a lifetime!

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From an earlier era, Paul Petersen, from “The Donna Reed Show” of the 50’s and early 60’s, sings a song that  brings back memories of a much beloved dad. 


And as Paul Simon says, “There will never be a father love his daughter as much as I love you.”

To all dads everywhere,

Happy, Happy Father’s Day!


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For your viewing pleasure, the next Survivor series:

Six married men will be dropped on an island with one car and 3 kids each for six weeks.

Each kid will play two sports and either take music or dance classes

There is no fast food.

Each man must take care of his 3 kids; keep his assigned house clean, correct all homework, and complete science projects, cook, do laundry, and pay a list of ‘pretend’ bills with not enough money.

In addition, each man will have to budget in money for groceries each week.

Each man must remember the birthdays of all their friends and relatives, and send cards out on time.

Each man must also take each child to a doctor’s appointment, a dentist appointment and a haircut appointment.

He must make one unscheduled and inconvenient visit per child to the Urgent Care.

He must also make cookies or cupcakes for a social function.

Each man will be responsible for decorating his own assigned house, planting flowers outside and keeping it presentable at all times.

The men will only have access to television when the kids are asleep and all chores are done.

The men must shave their legs, wear makeup daily, adorn himself with jewelry, wear uncomfortable yet stylish shoes, keep fingernails polished and eyebrows groomed.

During one of the six weeks, the men will have to endure severe abdominal cramps, back aches, and have extreme, unexplained mood swings but never once complain or slow down from other duties.

They must attend weekly school meetings, church, and find time at least once to spend the afternoon at the park or a similar setting.

They will need to read a book and then pray with the children each night and in the morning, feed them, dress them, brush their teeth and comb their hair by 7:00 am.

A test will be given at the end of the six weeks, and each father will be required to know all of the following information: each child’s birthday, height, weight, shoe size, clothes size and doctor’s name. Also the child’s weight at birth, length, time of birth, and length of labor, each child’s favorite color, middle name, favorite snack, favorite song, favorite drink, favorite toy, biggest fear and what they want to be when they grow up.

The kids vote them off the island based on performance. The last man wins only if…he still has enough energy to be intimate with his spouse at a moment’s notice.

If the last man does win, he can play the game over and over and over again for the next 18-25 years eventually earning the right to be called MOM!

Dad pulling out his hair.


Thanks, Jeanne! 😀

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Looking for something to do as a family this weekend?  Look no further than the Square in Decatur!

Concerts on the Square in Decatur

Every Saturday night in May from 7 – 9:30PM, you and your family can enjoy an evening of musical entertainment in the Square in Decatur.  Come early and find just the right spot to spread your blanket near the community bandstand.  Decatur is a very  family-friendly town with lots to offer not only the kids, but mom and dad, too!  See you there! 😀

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This morning I received one of those emails that many folks simply delete – a “Fwd”.  For some reason, I had the time available to open it and skim through.  After the first few lines, I slowed down and began re-reading it with interest.  A confirmed cat-lover, I have also had the privilege of being owned by a beloved dog or two in my lifetime as well.   I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.  If anyone knows the author, please let me know so I can properly attribute this post.

A Dog’s Purpose (from a 6-year-old perspective)
by a veterinarian……

child leading dog

Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog’s owners, Ron, his wife, Lisa, And their little boy, Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.

I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn’t do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.

As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.

The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker’s family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. 

Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.

The little boy seemed to accept Belker’s transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker’s death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ‘I know why.’

Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I’d never heard a more comforting explanation.

He said, ‘People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life — like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?’

The six-year-old continued, ‘Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don’t have to stay as long.’

Live simply
Love generously
Care deeply
Speak kindly

Remember, if a dog was the teacher you would learn things like:

When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.

Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.

Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy.

Take naps.

Stretch before rising.

Run, romp, and play daily.

Thrive on attention and let people touch you.

Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.

On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.

On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.

When you’re happy, dance around and wag your entire body.

Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.

Be loyal.

Never pretend to be something you’re not.

If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.

When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle them gently.



Many thanks to my friend, Cherease, for sharing this with me! 🙂

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When you become a parent for the very first time and you hold your newborn baby in your arms, you savor that first moment of recognition that this tiny little being is a part of you that will continue on into the future, promising yourself that you will always remember that instant in time. 

As a new mother, you feel a little bit bereft of the close intimacy you alone shared with this individual while carrying him inside your body, nurturing him and protecting him over those forty weeks of gestation, only to have that special intimacy broken in the birthing process, and a new, different one established.  Now you must share this new little person with others.

As your child grows and develops, you watch over him and imagine what he will be like when he grows up, becomes an adult, and heads off into the future of his world, not your own.  Will he be a ballplayer or a veterinarian?  Will he become a musician like his dad and I?  Is there a teacher somewhere down inside? 

You thrill to each new development – from the very first smile, the first “da-da, da-da” even though you’d love to hear “ma-ma, ma-ma”, the first steps without holding your hands – all the way to graduation from college and being so proud of him that you just don’t think you could possibly hold it inside.

As the years pass, you hold your child and comfort him when he stumbles and falls as  a young boy, scraping knees and elbows.  Squeeze a shoulder and give a hug to your teenager when his world falls apart from a betrayal by a supposedly good friend, all the while your heart is aching for him and wishing you could make it all better like you did when he was small. 

And you dream—

You dream of a time when he will have someone all his own to cherish him, to stand alongside and support him, to hold him and comfort him when the bad times come. 

You pray for a lifelong companion that will be everything he needs – not only one who will love and care for him, but also one that will encourage him to grow and become all he possibly could be. 

You pray for an individual that comes from a good, stable family with love and laughter in their family history, with a faith that is strong and deep like your own.

You pray for that special someone who will look at your child and make his face light up and his heart race as your spouse does yours even after 33 years of marriage.

And when that happens – you can’t help but thank God and smile at His Goodness.

We are thrilled to announce that our son Matthew has asked a very special young lady, Kati Lestmann, to be his wife, and she has accepted!  😀

Matthew and Kati, Christmas, 2007

Welcome to our family, Kati, and it is my prayer that you feel as loved and welcomed as I did 33 years ago! 

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