Saturday, November 30, 2013

December planning

Ram's parents returned home today and life is getting back to normal after a short Thanksgiving school break/eating too much/and grandparents spoiling the Lambs. We have some turkey left but most of the other Thanksgiving Day leftovers will be finished tomorrow if they aren't gone yet. We were able to help decorate the church for Advent tonight because we didn't go out of town this year. The Lambs had lots of time to play outside this week even though the weather was rainy and cool. They will miss their neighborhood friends returning to school next week. I feel ready to put the Thanksgiving/fall decorations away and get out the Advent wreath and Advent calendars.

It is nice that Advent begins on Dec. 1 this year-most store bought Advent calendars and Advent resources go from Dec. 1-25. Most years we have to wait until Dec. 1 to begin the Advent calendar even though Advent begins earlier. It was nice to celebrate my baptism birthday before Thanksgiving too.

This month Ram, Ewe, and the Lambs each have a few doctor appointments-trying to do these before a new calendar year and a new deductible to meet. It seems like Dr. appointments throw our whole school day off. We will keep plugging along in our school work even if we don't accomplish as much as normal in school this month.

I did a lot of Christmas shopping/getting stuff for Sunday School treats in October and early in November. I have a couple more small gifts to pick up but I am mostly done. I already mailed my parents and my sister their presents. I have the few other people that we mail to ready, I just need to wrap and put them in the mail.

Our Sunday School Christmas Service and our Ladies Advent Tea are both on December 8. I have much to do for both of these and have worked on it before Thanksgiving and will finish this week. After that Sunday School will do some crafts for the next few weeks so I won't need to prepare to teach a Sunday School lesson. I will make something for our Advent suppers but I don't have any other commitments. It will be really nice to get the major events done early in the month and spend the rest of December focusing on Advent and Christmas when it comes. I am expecting Christmas to be very relaxed at our house as we decided not to celebrate Christmas with Ram's parents until New Year's week. Perhaps we can spend time doing some of the Christmas traditions that I would love to do but we never seem to have time.

Monday, November 25, 2013

God's own child for 40 years

Today is my baptismal anniversary. There is a lady at church that is proud to tell others how many years she has been a Lutheran. I think sometimes us life long Lutherans take that for granted. Thank you to my parents for bringing me to the font at St. Luke's Lutheran Church in Itasca, IL 40 years ago today. Thank you to Pastor Mueller for baptizing me in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Gracious Lord, we give thanks that in Holy Baptism we receive forgiveness of sins, deliverance from death and the devil, and eternal salvation. On this baptismal anniversary, bless me continually by Your Word and Spirit that I may faithfully keep the covenant into which I have been called, boldly confess my Savior, and finally share with all Your saints the joys of eternal life; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen (LSB page 310)

Today is also the day that Lamb 2 turns 7 1/2 and Ram celebrates his 10 1/2 anniversary of ordination into the holy ministry.

Thanks be to God!


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Schnitzel and spaetzle and bretzels

Tonight we took the Lambs out to eat at Idaho's only German restaurant. I had a coupon that was going to expire soon. It turned out that kids eat free on Sunday so that was a better deal than using the coupon.

When we got there the Lambs complained about the choices on the kids menu. They were out of one item so that left the kids choices of schnitzel, brats, or cheese spaetzle. Lamb 3 was not about to eat any of that. So we allowed him to order a cheese pretzel. Lamb 2 was willing to try schnitzel and spaetzle. (Lamb 2 went with the flow tonight-decided what to order right away, didn't complain that the food took a long time, etc. I can't express how huge that is for Lamb 2 to do that!) That left Lamb 1 who doesn't want anything with cheese and said he didn't want brats. He unwillingly ordered schnitzel with spaetzle because I told him there was no way he was going to order something that cost more than my entree on the adult menu just because he wasn't willing to eat anything on the kid menu. (Do those of you with pre-teen boys have this problem when eating out?) Ram ordered some German street food-brats with a curry ketchup sauce and fries. Ewe ordered brats with mashed potatoes and sauerkraut. The mashed potatoes were excellent!

It took a long time for the food to come, the restaurant was busy and they make the food homemade. When the food finally came every one was very pleased with what they ordered. Lamb 1 and 2 ate all of their food (and the portions were not small even off the kids menu!) and Lamb 3 ate all of his pretzel. They claimed they were still hungry so Lamb 2 and 3 ordered cheese pretzels and Lamb 1 ordered a plain pretzel. Lamb 3 was not able to finish his second pretzel but the other Lambs ate all their food. Ram ate all gluten free and Ewe only took a few bites to try the Lambs food that was not gluten free.

The atmosphere was neat-it is in a fancy area of town but was made to look like an indoor beer garden with picnic tables and flags on the walls and lights. The Lambs enjoyed going over what German vocabulary they know and seeing the German signs on the restrooms. Ewe enjoyed the pictures from German places on the walls.

It wasn't exactly a cheap evening out, but it helped that Lamb 1 and 2 had their meals free and we just paid for their pretzels. Eating out is not cheap any place any more and we had huge portions of food. The Lambs liked it enough to ask if we could go there again. Ram and I thought maybe next time we would order what we want and pick up a carry out and just serve the Lambs something they like at home. Or perhaps some time we can have a date there without the Lambs. But I'm glad we took the Lambs this time-perhaps it will get through to them that it is fun to try new foods and places and you may be surprised, it might be really good! I would rather just go out occasionally to places like we went tonight instead of going out more often to chain restaurants. And I do enjoy taking the Lambs and giving them new experiences too.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Tie one on day 2013

Are you ready? Put on your apron, make a baked good and deliver it on Wednesday to cheer someone up. Look for more info here. We are hosting Thanksgiving at our house this year instead of going out of town and so far everyone is healthy, so I'm looking forward to actually participating this year on the day, not waiting until another date.

Friday, November 22, 2013


I'm posting some pictures on my blog! I'm trying to get caught up before Christmas. These pictures are from this month too!

The Lambs built a church out of Legos. Notice the pastor is bald. The area in the back is the closet for the acolyte supplies. The people outside the church are in a wheelchair built for three so they can fit in the church better. I thought the Lambs were very creative. I love the organist with pink hair!
Lamb 1 and 2 with their Lego church.

Lamb 3 with Tigger. He tried to buy Tigger at our church bazaar but he only had a $5 bill and it cost a nickel so they gave it to him. That was all he wanted at the bazaar. His brothers bought more junk treasures and spent more of their $5 each spending money. Tigger needed back surgery by Ewe the same day we brought him home. Lamb 3 has given lots of love to Tigger since he brought him home.

Thursday, November 21, 2013


Ram: What would you like for breakfast?
Lamb 3: (using hand motions to show what he means) Crumbled eggs, not those flat eggs that Mama makes us sometimes.

(I guess he prefers scrambled eggs!)

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Nap Time

A few days ago the Lambs were all working to clean up their toys. When Lamb 3 was done organizing his area, he asked if he could take a nap. I couldn't believe he was ASKING to take a nap in the middle of the afternoon. In his cleaning up he found Pooh and Tigger. Lamb 3 is my baby (even if he's 5!) and I couldn't resist taking a picture of him sleeping with Tigger.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013


When we lived in MN we often got the Sunday paper. I rejoiced when there were diaper coupons in the paper, especially Pampers or any kind of wipe coupons. I cut coupons but besides the diaper coupons, not a whole lot got used when we only went for one big shopping trip a month. They would either expire or I didn't have time to look for specific items on our long shopping days.
A few years ago we stopped getting the Sunday paper. It just wasn't worth the hassle any more and easier to buy generic. This was even when Lamb 3 was still in diapers because we used cloth diapers with him.
Last week and this week we got the Sunday paper. I knew there would probably be some good coupons in it for Thanksgiving dinner. What surprised me was there were very few coupons that we could use any more. We don't buy diapers. We don't buy bread or rolls any more. We don't use a lot of cleaning products besides vinegar.
I was able to use a couple coupons for things like spices and cottage cheese-matched up to sales in the store. There was a rebate for liquor which we used to stock up on vodka for homemade vanilla! Plus now I live in a city and I can actually use the coupons for stores like Hobby Lobby and Michaels and Joann Fabrics before they expire. I know I could print these same coupons off the internet, but it is nice to get them all together in the newspaper. Same for looking if it is worth a trip to Target-are things we use on sale? Last week it was for us at Target, this week it is not.
So I would say that it is still worth the price of a newspaper for us to get the coupons in the Sunday paper, our savings are just very different than they were 5 years ago. Plus Ram gets to read the paper, even if we think it is very short on news compared to the Twin Cities Sunday paper. But I don't think we'll become regular subscribers and definitely not the extreme couponers that get several copies of the Sunday paper.

Monday, November 18, 2013


On Thursday I received a phone call from the nurse of the doctor I have gone to after my last few miscarriages. I had to ask her to repeat which doctor's office she was calling from when she called. I would have expected a phone call from one of Lamb 2's doctors, but not a phone call from my doctor that I haven't seen for several months.
When I finally figured out who was calling, I asked why she was calling. The were just calling to check on me. I replied that I was fine and I would contact them if I needed them.
When I hung up the phone, I was puzzled if they were calling because they were truly concerned about me or if they want my business if I become more aggressive in trying to have a baby. I still don't know the answer to that. They never called me before as a follow up after previous miscarriages, so I doubt the former is the reason. I refuse to become as they would say "more aggressive in my approach to having a baby" for moral reasons so if the latter is the reason, they aren't going to make money off of me. Or perhaps my turning 40 last week made them call me? When I first saw this doctor I was 38 and she said I would want to be very aggressive in trying to have a baby before I turned 40. She didn't like my answer then that I was trying to prevent more miscarriages, and since it is the Lord that gives children, I can not try or not try to have babies.
I am still a little shaken by that phone call. It was not helpful in my journey of grief. I am mentally/spiritually/physically fine after all my miscarriages. But what if I wasn't when I received that phone call?
Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Trunk or Treat

This was the best picture I took at any of the Trunk or Treats we went to. It was held at my friend Joelle's church. It was so nice to attend but not do all the work! We couldn't find her son when it was time to take the picture.
Not pictured: T-Thomas the Train.
Lamb 3-Eeyore
A-Riding a horse
Lamb 1-Baseball player
Lamb 2-The King of Candy with a homemade sword

Ram took them to our city Trunk or Treat while I attended a teacher workshop. The Lambs received several gift cards for free kids meals for restaurants in the area and lots of candy. We'll try to go to that event again next year. We didn't take any pictures of the city Trunk or Treat.

Our church Trunk or Treat started out rainy but we had great attendance. I didn't take many pictures, but here are a few.
This family made their own costumes. They attended our church Trunk or Treat but they are not members of our church. Aren't they creative?

A few photos of the Lambs before it got dark.
Lamb 1- Obi Wan Kenobi homemade costume made out of duct tape
(He asked if he could grow a beard for Halloween! Perhaps next year I'll have to get some face paint for beards.)
Lamb 2-The King of Candy
With finger glow rings that we gave out at Trunk or Treat

Lamb 3-Eeyore
With glow in the dark sword

I can't get Blogger to cooperate to post the last picture. Anyway, our trunk was decorated with pumpkins and squash at the bottom of the trunk and the Lambs made Halloween paper chains too. Bones had surgery and was able to attend Trunk or Treat. Unfortunately he broke his leg again at Trunk or Treat. I think he overdid it going to Trunk or Treat the day after his surgery. No surgeries have been successful since then so I think his left leg will need to be amputated below the knee. He is currently recovering on the sofa in our library.

Lamb 2 and 3 have almost finished their candy. They received a lot going to Trunk or Treat 3 times plus Trick or Treating in our neighborhood. You can't tell that Lamb 1 has eaten any because he limits himself to one piece a day. I now know who we need to teach budgeting skills to in the future!

I told the Lambs that we were not spending money on costumes this year. They were pretty creative in coming up with stuff we had around the house. They all ended up with warm costumes for our church Trunk or Treat that was cold and rainy.

Thursday, November 14, 2013


Happy Birthday, Hannah!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


1/4 of the candidates that I voted for yesterday won. We had a lot of people running for our city council. I did a few minutes of research on the internet before I went to vote, one of the candidates didn't file his 2012 taxes for personal reasons! Thankfully he didn't win.

Also, a few nights ago I spent some time rereading my blog from the past few months. There is so much more that we have done this year that I never took the time to blog about. I do enjoy looking back at my blog so I hope to blog a little more often before the end of the year. I'm almost afraid to say that things have calmed down here as far as our schedule so hopefully I can accomplish this goal.

Monday, November 4, 2013

All Saints Day

Ram's installation at our church was on All Saints Day (Observed) 2 years ago. On that busy day, All Saints Day wasn't observed very much with all the other festivities. But when it was time for communion, I remembered that it was All Saints Day and it brought tears to my eyes to see two living saints in wheelchairs come up to the communion rail together.

Wheelchair number one was a younger lady that I'm not sure what her official diagnosis is other than she has some muscle problems and is a slower speaker. She introduced herself after the service and talked about how happy she was that she was able to attend Ram's installation. She also smiled as she said how happy she was that she was a baptized Lutheran. A caretaker brings her to church almost every Sunday.

Wheelchair number two was an older lady pushed by her husband. It brought tears to my eyes that a husband would take care of every need for his wife. In the two years we have been here they very rarely missed church, I can only think of one vacation where they did. They were no longer able to help with many projects at church, but they were there every Sunday for church and Bible class. We later found out that they were charter members of our church. This summer the husband announced that he had terminal cancer. Even though it took great effort, he continued to go to church each Sunday. Their children took turns bringing them to church. On Reformation Sunday after church he told his children he was too weak to go to church any more. We could not predict that he would be praising God on His throne by the next Sunday.

So All Saints Day Observed brought extra tears for the members of our congregation, especially when Pastor reminded the children during the Children's Message that the whole company of heaven is at the communion rail with us. The hymns were so beautiful when thinking of this saint that has gone before us. Some of his family including his wife were in church with us yesterday which made his chair seem empty.

After church yesterday I went to talk to the lady in wheelchair number one. She was smiling and talked about how happy she was. I had to stop myself from saying that I cried through most of the service. But then she explained some more-she was happy because her friend from our church was no longer in pain and was with Jesus now. And I smiled because I know that they will still be at the communion rail together each Sunday.

For the Lord takes pleasure in his people, he adorns the humble with salvation. Psalm 149:4

Sunday, November 3, 2013

So proud...

of my alma mater, winning the state marching band finals! Congratulations, Mrs. Moellering, after 21 years of hard work. Congratulations, band members after many, many practices. We love that you gave such a great Lutheran music witness. We love that you silently witnessed by forming a cross formation as you waited for the results from the judges. Now, make room for the huge new trophy!