Saturday, September 25, 2010

Bee Kind

This past week Bryce brought home from school a prize he had earned from his kindergarten teacher, a cute little bumblebee. The bumblebee was made out of several black and yellow pipe cleaners twisted together with wiggly eyes glued on and cute little wings. Bryce was very proud of his little bee and the accomplishment it stood for (good behavior in class).

But, unfortunately the little bumblebee didn't make it very long at home. I'm not sure if it was played with too roughly, if there was a little brother responsible, or what exactly was the "cause of death." Bryce couldn't quite get the information out through his tears. He was very grief stricken over the destruction of the bee. I am not very crafty and try as I may I couldn't seem to reassemble the bumblebee. The next day Bryce brought the pieces back to school and asked his teacher if she might be able to fix the bumblebee.

A couple of days passed and one afternoon after he had come home from school Bryce told me that his teacher had given him back his bee. He then told me that he didn't have it any more. You see, he said, his teacher had given a bee to him and another boy in his class that day. The other little boy just happens to ride home on the same school bus as Bryce. The boys were sitting side by side, holding their bumblebees when another kid decided to harass the kindergarteners by taking and pulling apart the other boy's bee. As you can imagine, the poor little boy was very distraught and sat beside Bryce crying over the mess of pipe cleaners that had been handed back to him. Bryce told me that he "thought in his mind" "Should I give him my bee? I don't wan't to give him my bee, but I should. It will make him happy." Then Bryce kindly handed over his much-prized possession to his classmate. "And that's why I don't have my bee anymore," Bryce told me.

I was so touched that Bryce willingly gave away something that was so precious to him. He chose to do the right thing, even though it was hard. It's amazing how much our children can teach us. It's easy to give away our extras, our spares or unwanted items. But how often do we give away something dear to us without expecting anything in return other than knowing that we did the right thing?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Photo of the day

If you look carefully you can see a four year old boy asleep in the storage basket of my stroller. Yes, this is how we convert our double stroller into a triple stroller. The poor little guy was tuckered out from walking to the bus stop and crawled into the basket (actually this part is common practice) and fell asleep there.

And yes, I let him sleep. Don't judge me, you would have too if you had heard all the crying and complaining beforehand! He took a nice nap in the stroller (safely parked in our garage) and woke up a happy little boy once again.

Dear Old Golden Rule Days

The first day of school was much anticipated at our house as Bryce was entering kindergarten and Grant moving up to second grade. The boys eagerly set out their clothes, backpacks, and lunch boxes in preparation for the big day and were ready to head to the bus stop bright and early.

The "big boys."

Our neighbor who lives near the bus stop does an annual first day of school breakfast every year. Everyone brings something to share, there is a lot of talk about who is in the same class and what teachers everyone has, and the kids get all sugared up to head off to school. This is a photo of the kindergarteners at our bus stop. There are around thirty kids that get on the bus at our stop. It's a happenin' place!

Excited about his first day of school.

Such the big kid--full of helpful tips for his little brother.

Brian there to see them off on the first day.

We are three weeks in to the school year and so far it is a big success. Bryce absolutely loves kindergarten and comes home every day with a big smile on his face and a story about something exciting that happened in class that day. He is proud of his new status as a kindergartner and seems to be flourishing in school. Grant enjoys second grade and looks forward to going to school each morning. He is grateful to have some friends in his class from last year and is glad to now be able to share the school experience with his brother.

It was so neat (providential, rather) that my Bible reading for Sept. 7, the first day of school, included Joshua 1:9 which I was able to share with the boys that morning: "Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go (even at school!)."

We look forward to seeing all the many blessings the Lord has in store for Grant and Bryce during the upcoming school year!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Not the thing you want to hear

The other day Grant ran up to me and very excitedly announced, "Mom, Claire is really tough!"

Party on the Pontoon!

We surprised my mom with a pontoon boat ride for her birthday. We spent the morning cruising on the reservoir and picnicking on the boat. My mom enjoyed the surprise and we all enjoyed the fun morning out on the boat.

This was the boys' first boat ride and they loved it.

Grant playing with his baby sister--she liked the boat ride too!

Jessica made this scrumptious cake. It definitely had to be chocolate for my mom!

Claire and Gramma

Davis and Grandpa

Eric, Brian, Bryce, Grant and Carter

Jake and Jessica

Closing out the summer

It's hard to believe that summer is a thing of the past. Carter asks me every day now, "Mom, is it fall yet?" What a wonderful summer it was...

In the first part of August Brian and I participated in a baby dedication service at church. We promised before God and the congregation to raise Claire in a home that is Christ-honoring, to teach her from the Bible, and to make clear to her the wonderful gift of salvation that is offered to her through Jesus Christ. We hope and pray that one day she will make a decision to accept Christ's offer of forgiveness and choose to follow Him. Because her name means clear or bright we chose Matthew 5:16 as her life verse. "Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."

Happy girl

Getting so big!

Picnics at the park...

Look carefully and you'll see a tiny baby frog!

Yes, she is always smiling!

Pool time.

Brian putting together his new charcoal grill.
We have been able to enjoy many tasty meals from the new grill!

In August Brian's sweet grandmother, Nana, was able to make a trip from Houston to Virginia. We were able to introduce her to Claire and enjoyed a fun day together at Brian's parents house in Williamsburg.

Nannie and Claire

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Carter!

We celebrated Carter's birthday at the ultimate destination for four-year-olds, Chuck-E-Cheese. The countdown to his birthday was full of anticipation and talk of pizza, tokens, video games, the maze and riding toys, and of course, presents. The evening met expectations and Carter had a blast celebrating his fourth birthday.

Carter is full of pizazz and brings a lot of laughter into our family. We love his fun-loving, outgoing personality. Recently as I dropped him off for Sunday school the teacher announced, "It's the Carter show!" He is quite the ham. He can, however, put up quite a battle over tasting vegetables, always wants to have a say in what clothes he wears, and can be amazingly stubborn (let's call it persistent) over just about anything that he has an opinion about. Carter enjoys having both older and younger siblings. He adores his little sister and recently has been telling her (not queued) "Claire, you're AWESOME!" He is kind to Davis as well and tries his best to keep up with the "big boys." Carter has the cutest smile with dimples on both cheeks and a laugh that is oh-so contagious. We love you Carter and can't wait to see all that God has in store for you!

Happy 4th birthday, sweet boy! August 24, 2010