« September 2007 | Main | November 2007 »

Reformation Hymn

"A Mighty Fortress Is Our God"

A mighty fortress is our God,
A bulwark never failing;
Our helper He amid the flood
Of mortal ills prevailing.
For still our ancient foe
Doth seek to work us woe --
His craft and pow'r are great,
And armed with cruel hate,
On earth is not his equal.

Did we in our own strength confide
Our striving would be losing,
Were not the right Man on our side,
The Man of God's own choosing.
Dost ask who that may be?
Christ Jesus, it is He --
Lord Sabaoth His name,
From age to age the same --
And He must win the battle.

And tho this world, with devils filled,
Should threaten to undo us,
We will not fear, for God hath willed
His truth to triumph thru us.
The prince of darkness grim --
We tremble not for him;
His rage we can endure,
For lo! his doom is sure --
One little word shall fell him.

That word above all earthly pow'rs --
No thanks to them abideth;
The Spirit and the gifts are ours
Thru Him who with us sideth.
Let goods and kindred go,
This mortal life also;
The body they may kill:
God's truth abideth still --
His kingdom is forever.

--Martin Luther

My boys sing this hymn lustily and know every stanza.


October 31, 2007  |  Comments (2)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Smooth Moves

KnightT and NinjaJ, originally uploaded by TulipGrrl.


October 31, 2007  |  Comments (1)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Real Ultimate Ninja

NinjaT, originally uploaded by TulipGrrl.


October 31, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



The Knightiest Knight

KnightT, originally uploaded by TulipGrrl.


October 31, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Doing Everything a C6 Can

SpiderC, originally uploaded by TulipGrrl.


October 31, 2007  |  Comments (3)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Patriotic Boys

Getting Ready for the Patriotic Rally - 10/26/07
Originally uploaded by TulipGrrl
Do to a time miscalculation, we didn't make it to the pro-troop rally in Orlando today. However, we'll be at the Green Bridge over the Manatee River tomorrow afternoon.

Update: We did made it to the bridge over the Manatee River this afternoon--boys, flag, signs and all. The boys loved it and we'll be out their next week, if anyone wants to join us!


October 27, 2007  |  Comments (2)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Moderns and Mystics

"It seems to me that in our day we take the pattern and measure of our religion too commonly from what is popular, that is bustling outward and full of éclat. But it may appear in another world that some of the mightiest influences have proceeded from souls of great quiet."

--J.W. Alexander


October 26, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



There'll Be Peace

I didn´t understand
The things you´re going through
I never understood
I really never knew

Carry on, carry on
The sun will always shine
Carry on, carry on
We’ll have a glass of wine
Or cigarette

Take destiny by the hand
And lead it far away
Take it to another land
We will all decay

Carry on, carry on
The sun will always shine
Carry on, carry on
We’ll have a glass of wine
Or cigarette


October 26, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Boys Will Eat Anything

I've got to say, I'm super thankful that my boys will eat just about anything. They are each allowed to choose one food that they don't have to eat, but if it is in something I prepare, they are responsible for just eating around it. Right now, the "one things" include leeks, onions, carrots and lima beans. For a long time, monkey brains were R8's "one thing" and then he realized I never serve those. . .

I'm thankful they are willing to try just about anything. One wasn't thrilled with the millet I've made a few times. I tried to convince them it was yummy by saying it was like a cross between rice and couscous. I forgot that rice had been his "one thing" for quite a while.

We had a light lunch the other day of veggies dipped in hummus and toasted pita bread. Hubby bought the hummus at the grocery store, and it reminded me of how much we all like it. It's pretty easy to make, too--and you can skip the tahini if you aren't a hummus purist.

Tonight we had deeeelicious Cuban Black Bean soup. We try to have a legume-based dinner once a week, and Black Bean soup is a fave. I forgot just how good Cuban Black Bean soup is when you're sure to season it with cumin and serve with fresh chopped onions and sour cream. Yummmm. We all had seconds.

Maybe it's the cooler weather, but I'm more inspired to cook and create in the kitchen these days. R8 is asking to make apple butter with me--I've hardly done any canning since Ukraine.



October 22, 2007  |  Comments (6)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Glimpses of Homeschooling

Today C6 read Ella Sings Jazz and Hubby taught the boys about the Harlem Renaissance.


October 22, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



A Corrective Comedy.

This is worth reading all the way to the end.

Really. Go ahead and click on the link. Read it--it's worth it.


October 22, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Westminster Shorter Catechism, Question 17

17. Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?

A. The fall brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery.

sin and misery
Genesis 3:16-19, 23; Romans 3:16; Romans 5:12; Ephesians 2:1

(via OPC/CRTA)


October 21, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Quick Undergrad Tip

If you are taking an undergrad class and studying for an exam, google the textbook title. Often the publisher has study guides, quizzes, glossaries and interactive tools for students on their websites--like this one for Cozby's Research Methods. It's even possible the the prof will use the same questions on the exam.

Just sayin'.

eta. . . got a 99% on one test and 90% on the other, for the ones I used online studying to prepare.


October 20, 2007  |  Comments (1)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Pancake Mixes

J11 is very handy in the kitchen. It took me years to be able to make good pancakes, and he's mastered it at age 11. Still, it's easiest to use a mix in the box, but when he's cooking and the other boys are eating. . . well. . . we can go through a lot of pancakes! So here are some make-your-own-mix recipes for us to try out.

Oatmeal Pancake Mix

4 cups quick cooking oats
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup non-fat dry milk
2 tablespoons cinnamon
5 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Makes about 8 cups.

To cook the pancakes, beat together:
2 eggs
1/3 c. of melted butter

Little by little mix in:
2 c. of pancake mix
1 c. of water

Perfect Pancake Mix

5 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup cornmeal
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt

Stir 1 1/2 cups of pancake mix, 2 eggs, and 1 1/4 cups of milk in a mixing bowl until smooth. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a large frying pan over medium heat. Cook the pancakes for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Enjoy with maple syrup.


October 20, 2007  |  Comments (1)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



That Pregnant Glow

In the past few weeks, several close friends or family members have announced that they will be having little bundles of joy make springtime appearances, including:


I'm thrilled. Sharing the excitement, the joy, the preparations. . . thanking the Lord along with them for their children.


October 19, 2007  |  Comments (3)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



No Drama

Just life. Days and weeks go by, the normal rhythm of life. I'm thankful for the lack of drama, the routine ups and downs. I embrace my husband. Hold on to my boys while letting them go. Thanking the Lord.


October 18, 2007  |  Comments (3)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



O Sacred Head Now Wounded

O sacred Head, now wounded, with grief and shame weighed down,
Now scornfully surrounded with thorns, Thine only crown;
How pale Thou art with anguish, with sore abuse and scorn!
How does that visage languish, which once was bright as morn!

What Thou, my Lord, hast suffered, was all for sinners’ gain;
Mine, mine was the transgression, but Thine the deadly pain.
Lo, here I fall, my Savior! ’Tis I deserve Thy place;
Look on me with Thy favor, vouchsafe to me Thy grace.

Men mock and taunt and jeer Thee, Thou noble countenance,
Though mighty worlds shall fear Thee and flee before Thy glance.
How art thou pale with anguish, with sore abuse and scorn!
How doth Thy visage languish that once was bright as morn!

Now from Thy cheeks has vanished their color once so fair;
From Thy red lips is banished the splendor that was there.
Grim death, with cruel rigor, hath robbed Thee of Thy life;
Thus Thou hast lost Thy vigor, Thy strength in this sad strife.

My burden in Thy Passion, Lord, Thou hast borne for me,
For it was my transgression which brought this woe on Thee.
I cast me down before Thee, wrath were my rightful lot;
Have mercy, I implore Thee; Redeemer, spurn me not!

What language shall I borrow to thank Thee, dearest friend,
For this Thy dying sorrow, Thy pity without end?
O make me Thine forever, and should I fainting be,
Lord, let me never, never outlive my love to Thee.

My Shepherd, now receive me; my Guardian, own me Thine.
Great blessings Thou didst give me, O source of gifts divine.
Thy lips have often fed me with words of truth and love;
Thy Spirit oft hath led me to heavenly joys above.

Here I will stand beside Thee, from Thee I will not part;
O Savior, do not chide me! When breaks Thy loving heart,
When soul and body languish in death’s cold, cruel grasp,
Then, in Thy deepest anguish, Thee in mine arms I’ll clasp.

The joy can never be spoken, above all joys beside,
When in Thy body broken I thus with safety hide.
O Lord of Life, desiring Thy glory now to see,
Beside Thy cross expiring, I’d breathe my soul to Thee.

My Savior, be Thou near me when death is at my door;
Then let Thy presence cheer me, forsake me nevermore!
When soul and body languish, oh, leave me not alone,
But take away mine anguish by virtue of Thine own!

Be Thou my consolation, my shield when I must die;
Remind me of Thy passion when my last hour draws nigh.
Mine eyes shall then behold Thee, upon Thy cross shall dwell,
My heart by faith enfolds Thee. Who dieth thus dies well.

--Bernard of Clairvaux, trans. J.W. Alexander

Today was a communion Sunday.


October 14, 2007  |  Comments (2)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



"Because the ice is so slippery. . .

. . . and the monkeys are all irrational."

Family movie night: Most Valuable Primate


October 13, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Kid Compliments

"You know what I like about Mark? He's a great athlete. He's got amazing endurance. He can run and run and run. And he can jump far."

--T9 about neighbor-kid-Mark


October 12, 2007  |  Comments (1)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Friends in Moscow


October 07, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Waldensian Wisdom

The Vaudois Teacher

“O Lady fair, these silks of mine are beautiful and rare,__
The richest web of the Indian loom, which beauty’s queen might wear;
And my pearls are pure as thy own fair neck, with whose radiant light they vie;
I have brought them with me a weary way, __ will my gentle lady buy?”

The lady smiled on the worn old man through the dark and clustering curls
Which veiled her brow, as she bent to view his silks and glittering pearls;
And she placed their price in the old man’s hand and lightly turned away,
But she paused at the wanderer’s earnest call, __ “My gentle lady, stay!

“O Lady fair, I have yet a gem which a purer luster flings,
Than the diamond flash of the jeweled crown on the lofty brow of kings:
A wonderful pearl of exceeding price, whose virtue shall not decay,
Whose light shall be as a spell to thee and a blessing on thy way!”

The lady glanced at the mirroring steel where her form of grace was seen,
Where her eye shone clear, and her dark looks waved their clasping pearls between;
“Bring forth thy pearl of exceeding worth, thou traveller gray and old,
And name the price of thy precious gem, and my page shall count thy gold.”

The cloud went off from the pilgrim’s brow, as a small and meager book,
Unchased with gold or gem of cost, from his folding robe he took!
“Here, lady fair, is the pearl of price, may it prove as such to thee!
Nay, keep thy gold __ I ask it not, for the word of God is free!”

The hoary traveler went his way, but the gift he left behind
Hath had its pure and perfect work on that highborn maiden’s mind,
And she hath turned from the pride of sin to the lowliness of truth,
And given her heart to God in its beautiful hour of youth!

And she hath left the gray old halls, where an evil faith had power,
The courtly knights of her fathers train, and the maidens of her bower;
And she hath gone to the Vaudois vales by lordly feet untrod,
Where the poor and needy of earth are rich in the perfect love of God!

--John Greenleaf Whittier


October 06, 2007  |  Comments (0)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink




When I got up this morning, the boys were already awake and C6 was asking his brothers what kind of peanut-butter and jelly sandwich they wanted him to make for them. What a sweet kid.


October 06, 2007  |  Comments (1)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



Looking to Christ, Listening to My Mother

"And lastly, and I say this gently, as the parent of grown kids, knowing *insert parenting guru* is also the parent of grown kids: we have wonderful children--he does, I'm sure--and so do I. But without even knowing his children I can know this about them: they are not perfect. They hurt. They make mistakes. They struggle. They are prideful and overly simplistic at times; and crippled by shame and hesitancy at others. Yes--they are beautiful examples of human beings, his children (I assume), and mine (I know.) But they are not perfect. If they were, they would not be human. If it were possible to raise children to perfection, then God would have sent a parenting method, not Jesus. Our marching orders are not to raise our children by a method to be like *insert parenting guru* children. Our marching orders are to be Christians to and with our children."


I first posted this quote two years ago. This bit of inspiration is from a mother with three sons, who has given me a glimpse of the future with adult sons. Similarly, this week I read a transparent account of parenting mishaps and milestones from a mother with grown children and grandchildren.

Still, it is my own mother that continues to say the good things, the hard things, that I need to hear in my own life, for my own family. She gives me hope--in that the areas in which I struggle, she has already struggled through to the other side. In her life and mine, we have lived out the above truism, "[T]hey are not perfect. They hurt. They make mistakes. They struggle. They are prideful and overly simplistic at times; and crippled by shame and hesitancy at others. . . Our marching orders are to be Christians to and with our children."


October 04, 2007  |  Comments (1)  |  TrackBack (0)  |  Permalink



In My Garden
Recently Written
Book Blogging
Friends and Fans
Good Stuff
Blog Goodies