Ten Things to Tell You

Jumping back in with number 3!

3. A thing that changed my worldview…

Sometimes my life feels divided between before and after going to South Africa. My views on many things changed. I had never been out of the country (well maybe Canada when I was too little to remember) and I set off for a year. Going to South Africa not only changed my views on culture, people, food, and life in general, but also greatly impacted my view of God. I definitely have a big part of my heart there and am constantly looking forward to going back.

Though, I will say that since going to Africa I continue to love to travel and am thankful for all the ways so many of my adventures have shaped my worldview. From Sri Lanka to Rwanda to Italy and more, I am grateful for all the things I have learned and people I have met.

As I watch my aunts in their 70s still traveling the world, I pray that I am able to keep doing the same when I’m their age.

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10 Things to Tell You #2

Jumping back in with the second prompt…

Day 2. Someone who has influenced me…

I’m going with the first person who comes to mind and his name is Lindo. He was a little guy who was about 5 and I met him when I lived in South Africa. He was goofy and fun. He laughed and joked. God was so gracious in letting me be a tiny part in his story. I got to see him move from the orphanage to his aunt and uncle’s home. He helped shape my heart for Africa and view of God. He helped prepare me for loving and serving kids all over. Plus, he did an awesome job at teaching me about being present and the importance of play! His picture is up in my house and I’m grateful to have known him.

Adventure Bible Book of Daring Deeds and Epic Creations

Since I work with kids and have my own kids, I am constantly on the lookout for new resources. The Adventure Bible Book of Daring Deeds and Epic Creations fit my criteria! First of all, I enjoy having an Adventure Bible around especially for those kids who love exploring and want to read from a Bible with fun extras. This version is NOT a Bible but rather a guidebook. The book includes different activities and lessons that correspond with the Bible. For example, there are sections about camping and geocaching.

The ideas are fun ways to connect your kids to scripture and great as a supplement. The book could be a great gift to go alongside the Adventure Bible. I’m excited to try more of the activities and see what the kids think of them! The book is geared for age 8 and up but could be modified some for younger ages if you wanted. Older kids may want to do more independent work.

Disclosure: I received this book for free and all opinions are my own!

Beginner’s Bible Bedtime Collection

We’ve been enjoying the Beginner’s Bible for quite some time so I jumped at the chance to receive and review the Bedtime Collection.

This version cuts down the number of stories to 20, adds a glow in the dark cover, and a bedtime prayer at the end of each story. The illustrations and stories are mostly the same as the original.

We like the size of this one to take along and like having another in the house since we have multiple kids who love to read! I would recommend this as an additional one but still prefer the version with more stories.

Disclosure: I received this book for free and all opinions are my own.

10 Things to Tell You

I kept seeing this “10 Things to Tell You” challenge popping up on all sorts of feeds on Instagram and I thought it could be fun to do in the form of blog posts instead. I love surveys, quizzes, and get to know you things so this fits right into that! So, thanks Laura Tremaine for starting this challenge!

#1. I grew up…climbing snow hills in the winter and jumping off the dock into the lake in the summer. I used to brag about how cold Minnesota was when we lived briefly in Indiana for my mom to get her PhD. We moved there with our snow pants ready to go to school in most weather only to realize that if there was some snow everything would be cancelled.

Friday Favorites

Another Friday is here and how is it September?! I am feeling all the emotions about that (excited, sad, happy, and shock to name a few). The week has zoomed by with a holiday on Monday. I’m anticipating the weekend will do the same. Here is a handy little list of some of my favorites and things I’m mulling over.

1. The slight crisp in the air. I love summer but mostly I love being outside. Growing up, I used to say my favorite weather was when I could wear shorts and long sleeves. That still sounds about right! Warm enough to be outside and doing things but not so warm you’re sweating like crazy.

2. Finally getting rid of our big weed piles! They are seeded with new grass and now to tackle the weeds under the pine trees next. I’m so thankful for my husband’s hard work. I can’t say that I love having a yard to care for…no, pretty sure I’ve said I don’t love it but I am glad we can keep making this place better.

3. Making it to maybe baby month! I am so excited to meet this next little one. Now to see when he/she decides to come. And bring on all the cute newborn clothes!

4. An upcoming night away! I’m excited to explore a bit, eat some yummy food, and have uninterrupted conversations.

5. Library trips. We’ve worked more Library trips back into our schedule and everyone is loving them! I have quite a list of books on hold and I have been having fun reading them as they come. Though, I will say I’m always surprised at how many kids books have unkind words or odd story plots. Oh well, easy to return!

6. Looking up fun homeschool curriculum! I love exploring and researching so this has been interesting to run down all the different options (and there are a lot!). Asher will still go to school one afternoon a week (I totally value having him around other kids and adults–this is a whole post in of itself) but I am excited to add some fun parts into our routine a day or two while at home. I’m hoping this will help us make better decisions down the road.

7. 1 Peter 1:21 “..fasten your faith and hope in God alone!”

That’s all I’ve got for today…now to get back to enjoying the start of the weekend!

Values

I have been mulling over what I value and what I want my kids to remember about our family values. I love seeing them contribute to our family culture by bringing their unique personalities. Each family has a one of a kind culture that keeps expanding and growing as kids grow or get married too.

Right now, my husband brings the attention to detail, love for drums and all things music, a slower pace, an ability to fix or build whatever, the ability to be present, a love for new places and travel, and a steadiness to our family.

My son brings lots of energy, plans for the day, all things cars and trucks and trains, and brings up the noise level quite a bit! He equally spends time reading and getting us to read to him.

My daughter adds a new level of hugs and cuddles–she could be held almost all day! She loves exploring and climbing. She can be found trying on clothes and shoes. She dances when the music starts and will find any baby doll within reach. She could go for walks every day. She also asks for paints or crayons often!

I’m curious what this next baby will add to the mix!

For myself, I’m always trying to add more things for us to do, adding in goals and asking what the plan is, adding color, all sorts of mini celebrations or ways to have fun, exercise and being active in whatever ways we can, scheming our next vacation, and a love for Africa and missions.

We all influence each other and strive to cheer each other on for being as well as becoming who God created us to be.

When Asher’s pretending to be on a ship then he’s having it heading toward Africa. When Melea is asking for paints, the rest of us join in to paint our own pictures. Everyone ends up trying the drums. We are all heading out for walks together, traveling, and talking to God.

These are just a few of the things I have noticed. I’m planning to go back through Chazown by Craig Groeschel with Ryan and I’m hoping alongside chatting with God that this will help us solidify more of our family values, vision, and purpose as well as add some practical steps we can take.