Saturday, January 22, 2011

Rowen's 53rd birthday (January 21)

This is a gift Jeffrey gave Rowen.

It is a new Swiss Army knife; Rowen lost his down at Federal Heights a few weeks ago when he was shoveling snow at the church where we do children's ministry.

We all love and appreciate Rowen so much for being a wonderful husband, daddy, and example of Servant/Leader to us. He always puts all of us ahead of himself. He is one of the most unselfish people I have ever known. When he does voice a preference, we want to honor him by doing it. He loves fruit pies, so this is his birthday dessert. Apple pies. We will eat them at a family gathering today with two of Rowen's sisters and family in Greeley.

I thank God for the gift that Rowen is to our family and his family. When he was in the womb, his mother was 42 years old. She also had a grapefruit size tumor in her uterus. Nowadays, she probably would have been advised to abort the baby for her own health. I told her many times while she was living, "thank you" for giving birth to Rowen. He has been such a blessing throughout his life. His sweet, loving, patient, forgiving attitude is so special. He has always been a great teacher, passing on the things he learns to me and our children, as well as those with whom he works. I am thankful that he gave his heart to God when he was young and has lived a godly, consistent life.

Birthday bathroom project

Rowen's birthday was yesterday and something happened this week to give him a project to do on his birthday. He would rather have a project than a party, so Jason obliged him by actually fainting in the blue bathroom on Monday morning, and his head busted this hole in the wall! Of course, it was not intentional, and we were very relieved that Jason is okay and did not hit the tile floor or the ceramic "furniture" and have to have stitches in his head.

Rowen cut the hole into a nice square and covered it for a few days with this political sign leftover from some town election. (We have used political signs several times in our projects; they are great!)

Then he patched the hole with drywall.

And mudded it. Ever since we remodeled this bathroom in 2004, we wished we had put tile on this wall also, so since this accident happened, it was a good time to tile the wall.

Rowen took off Friday, his 53rd birthday to do the tiling. I thought about calling this next picture "Homeschooling in the bathroom." When we have a project to do, the kids get to observe and help and it is practical homeschooling. (They did their book learning in the afternoon.)

Jason got to cut the needed short pieces with the tile saw.

Jeffrey helped Rowen place the tiles until he had to go to work.

This was after the tiles were all in.

Today, Rowen and Jason grouted the tiling.

It turned out really nice. Rowen found another piece of trim for the bottom, already stained and varnished and leftover from the 2004 remodel. So that is a great find!

This next picture shows the wall and wallpaper after the new tiles, but before repainting.

This is after the grouting was finished, floor trim installed, and the bathroom was repainted, with decorations back on the wall. We have not yet added a wallpaper accent. We will wait and see on that... The paint color is matched as nearly as we could, but the paint is supposed to be an improvement over the paint we used in 2004. It is Benjamin Moore Aura Bath and Spa matte finish, bought at our favorite Johnstown ACE Hardware Store!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Homeschoolers Ice Skating

After negatives, 0's and 10's on the thermometer this week, we were thrilled to get up in the 40's again in time for our January homeschoolers' event: ice skating outside!
We had a good turnout of kids skating and have a few pictures to remember it by.
Jason, who always finds himself the biggest kid at homeschool events nowadays!

Emily, who dearly loves ice skating!

Emily and friends, Celeste Roller, Sydney and Breanna Clayton

Dave and Donna Ward, homeschooling parents

Dee Roller and Sharon Clayton, homeschool moms

Karla Bernal, homeschool mom taking pictures of her husband and kids skating.

Maryel Adams, patiently helping her kiddos learn to skate.

Alicia Ranslow, in the background, in pink, teaching her children to skate. Until now, they lived in Hawaii and never had skated! Stacey Hegarty and her kiddos and their cousins were there too, and everyone had a great time, stayed warm enough, and no one got hurt! Thank the Lord!

Richard and Judy Grout visited Johnstown Albertsons

On Tuesday, January 11, 2011, Richard and Judy Grout came through Johnstown to see us. They brought with them a young friend, Ruth. She and Judy played beautifully together on the violin and piano, and Richard and Judy updated us on their work.

Rowen's sister, Mary Albertson, was visiting us and she got to meet Richard and Judy for the first time.

Judy on left, Mary on right




Our children enjoyed playing music with Judy and Ruth also.
It was amazing how each felt a kindred spirit, though music was their only means of communication. Music became a very real language through which they could become acquainted!

Ruth and Emily

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Baptism, December 31, 2010

Baptism and Birthday

On December 31, 2010, we had the opportunity to have Jeffrey, Jason, and Emily baptized. We had been seeking an opportunity ever since Beth got baptized when she was visiting Eric and Shari in the summer of 2009. The family we babysit for, the Browns, were having Hope baptized at her 8th birthday party to which we were invited. We asked if our children could be baptized too. Hope was excited about it and willing for us to join in the baptism as well as the birthday part of the evening. Her grandpa, Tom Phillips, who is the Vice President of Evangelism Training for Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, was very willing to include our three in Hope's baptism. Tom came over to our house and visited us and talked about baptism. Our children gave their testimonies. The baptism took place at a motel in Loveland, CO in an indoor pool on the coldest day of December!
Before the baptism, Tom gave a message from the Word about salvation and baptism.

Hope with her grandpa, Tom Phillips, just before being baptized.

Rowen, Jeffrey, and Tom

Rowen, Jason, and Tom

Rowen, Emily, and Tom

After the baptism, Hope opened gifts and then we had pizza, veggies, and dessert.
Hope's siblings, Faith and Lincoln, on the left

Cara, Hope's mother receiving the pizzas from the delivery lady.

Hope being silly after blowing out her candles.

Matt, Hope's dad and Faith, Hope's sister

Hope's grandma and grandpa Phillips

We were blessed to be included in this occasion and are very thankful to have the opportunity to have our children all baptized and living for the Lord. Matt and Cara are our family doctors and we have been blessed to babysit for them for almost 3 years! They are like family to us.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Christmas "party" with Kauses

We enjoyed an evening with the Kauses on December 23rd. Each of us kids from both families shared music, our families exchanged gifts, and we had some snacks. The Kauses have been dear friends to us!

“I wanna see the pictures you took!” - Leigh Anna

Mother and Daddy modeling beautiful new scarfs, crocheted by Kelly

Emily and Leigh Anna--best friends

Jason and Emily sharing music.

Jason modeling his new hat.. er.. scarf.

Leigh Anna looks like she wants to play too!

Randy and Kelly

Beautiful New Quilt!

Janet made this beautiful quilt, finishing it in December. The pattern is called “Nine-Patch Plaid”.

Caroling night in Federal Heights

On December 17th all of us workers (except Jeffrey who had to work) at the Sunday School in Federal Heights caroled to all of our current Sunday School kids and their families and gave them cookie plates. But first, we filled the plates and put a Christmas note on top of the foil plate covers.

L-R: Rowen, Janet,Tonya Sickler, Beth, and Steve Cunningham

Tonya Sickler loading a plate full of goodies

Beth- "Want some?"

Christmas card taped on and the plate is ready to go.

While we prepared plates, Stacy McVey and Kassie and Titus played "pony."

Before caroling we ate supper, and after successful caroling (people responded positively), we had dessert and played games.

Ben and Marlene Reynolds

Tonya Sickler and Steve Cunningham