The Sparks

Posted by tom | Nov 1, 2005

On Sunday evening, our family had the opportunity to participate in A Celebration of Hymns: Concert for All Ages led by the Sparks. The time was a great encouragement to us. Ellen was dancing in the aisle! I believe that we first heard Greg & Rebecca about a dozen years ago at one World Vision's first 30 Hour Famines for college students.

Their music and life continue to evidence the Presence and Power of God as they assist with worship and young adult ministry at the local congregation we attend. I've gotten to know Greg over the past several years and their music is an expression of their life/walk in Christ, placing the focus on Christ and not 'branding' themselves. I'd encourage you to soak in some sample Hymns from their new release Rapture

I can't articulate it yet, note: there many times are no words for the mysterious work of the Spirit, but I was deeply moved by the time of worship that our family experienced with the Body of Christ last night. It touched roots of faith that extend beyond our short lives to the work of God among sinners across the ages who have come to him At the Cross and continue to find Him their Vision until they Fly Away with Him. More later, as I find words to express my experience/thoughts which almost kept me up all night praising God in song . . . let me know if the Spirit has likewise moved you by the hymns of the faith. Would love to read your stories.

Applesauce recipe

Posted by tom | Oct 22, 2005
Several of you have wondered about the recipe for the tasty applesauce which we brought to the Graduate Christian Fellowship (GCF) lunch several weeks ago. So here goes:

1. Peel and quarter apples

2. Cook in pot with a little water until mushy
3. Blend
4. Stir in sugar to taste

For those looking for a slightly more scientific recipe . . .

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Smooth Transitions

Posted by tom | Sep 1, 2005

Are Transitions now smoother for Kindgartners? Hayley and Ellen definately were prepared in a significant way by Miss Rhonda at Greenfield's Community Church of God Academy.

Yet, I (Tom) would not have traded growing up in the family dental office. For quite awhile I preferred this learning community over formal schooling, something I still have not completely lost. I hope Hayley and Ellen look back to their InterVarsity neighborhood with fondness, but also adjust to the formal schooling more quickly. Such was one of goals in enrolling them in preschool. The choice of a preschool informed by a shared faith in Christ was also intentional, as seek to lay a foundation for following Christ as salt and light in a complex world . . . young women giving witness to God with their whole being (mind, body, and strength) day-by-day, each step of the way.

How did the First Day of Kindergarten go?

Posted by tom | Aug 31, 2005

Remarkably well. I (Theresa) was pretty confident that they would enjoy their class and teacher, but I was anxious about how the bus ride would go. Especially since last night Ellen broke down sobbing about her fears. But this morning was great. They followed the new morning routine to get ready on time and as I started to get dressed the busdriver called to say that she was at the bus stop (20 min. before the scheduled arrival time). Allow me to interject here to say what you're all thinking --"Bus drivers call you when they are there and you're not?" I was surprised too (actually she called yesterday morning wondering where we were b/c the rest of the school started on Tues, but Kindergarten started on Wed.), but thankful.

When I took the girls to the bus this morning I talked with the driver and she gave me her cell phone number. It was one of those van-size busses. H and E are the first ones on and according to them it also picks up 3 boys (1 light and 2 dark as Hayley described them). H and E did not sit together (Hayley said she didn't want to sit with Ellen and she sat behind her. Tomorrow she might sit across from Ellen--is this more information than you need???). They won't ride the bus home until next week b/c Kindergarten only goes until 10:30am this week. Which means I pick them up :) Today I had to go in for new parent orientation anyway.

Have you ever really had a teacher?

Posted by tom | Aug 31, 2005

One who saw you as a raw but precious thing, a jewel that, with wisdom, could be polished to a proud shine? If you are lucky enough to find your way to such teachers, you will always find your way back. Sometimes it is only in your head. Sometimes it is right alongside their beds.

The last class of my old professor's life took place once a week, in his home, by a window in his study where he could watch a small hibiscus plant shed its pink flowers. The class met on Tuesdays. No books were required. The subject was the meaning of life. It was taught from experience.

The teaching goes on.

So concludes Tuesdays with Morrie. By God's grace I can answer this question in the affirmative. All through my life I have had teachers who walked w/me side-by-side, no more formative than a middle-school principal who pushed me to stop fading in and out of my selfish reality . . .

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Twins update

Posted by tom | Aug 25, 2005

In other news, the twins are looking forward to Kindergarten at Pittsburgh Urban Christian School. They start next Wed. (8/31) but only go until 10:30 am for the first 3 days. The full day schedule starts 9/6. Ellen mentioned that she was a little scared, so we visited her teacher and classroom at the school briefly. Hopefully that will squash some of the jitters. I know they'll enjoy it once they get there. I'm more concerned about getting them onto the bus! I wish we could do a trial run of that. That's about it here.

We're madly trying to cram fun stuff into this last week of summer, so life's rather crazy. But then again, isn't it always???

Relaxing in Williamsburg

Posted by tom | Jun 13, 2005
Time to take a break by taking a week in Williamsburg, VA.
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