Tuesday, March 25, 2008

A Morning Walk

Saturday morning, since I had to work, I went on a morning walk. I had to go and pick up the office mail, so I went over to the post office. I must say, it was a BEAUTIFUL day for a walk. Since it was early Saturday, no one was out and about....not walking.....not driving. It was so peaceful! Here are some pictures I took on my walk:

Psalm 15

Lord, who may dwell in Your sanctuary? Who may live on Your holy hill?
He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from his heart

and has no slander on his tongue, who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman,
who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the Lord, who keeps his oath even when it hurts,

who lends his money without usury and does not accept a bribe against the innocent.

He who does these things will never be shaken.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Respect Lesson - Wednesday Night 101

Tonight, our lesson was again about having an attitude of Christ. We are studying what the Bible has to say about respect. Here is the class outline:
  1. Storytime. Read George and Martha story book, about respecting others. Show the flower chart and introduce Respect in the middle.
  2. Read Bible verses about respect. Have them "hunt" for large pictures on the wall that have something to do with the verse I read.
  3. Create flow charts.
  4. Snack.
  5. Close with prayer and clean up.
Here is the detailed nitty-gritty:

1. I read this book from the library which had a good story about respecting others.

I used this chart for our word Respect. I read one verse at a time, and let them get up and run around the classroom to find the picture they chose to represent that verse.

  • Leviticus 19:3 "Each of you must show respect for your mother and father."

  • Leviticus 19:32 "Show your fear of God by standing up in teh presence of elderly people and showing respect for the aged. I am the Lord."

  • Proverbs 13:13 "He who scorns instruction will pay for it, but he who respects a command is rewarded."

  • Proverbs 11:16 "A kindhearted woman gains respect, but ruthless men gain only wealth. " (used this for sharing principle/kindness)

  • 1 Thessalonians 4:11,12 "This should be your ambition: to live a quiet life, minding your own business and owkring with your hands, just as we commanded you before. As a result, people who are not Christians will respect the way you live"

  • 1 Thessalonians 5:12 "Dear brothers and sisters, honor those who are your leaders/teachers in the Lord's work. They work hard among you and warn you against all that is wrong."

Next I read this book about polite words to use, and how they show respect. They ate jello while I read them the story.

Finally, we closed with prayer and a quick clean up of the classroom. The were eager to help with this because I said we could re-read the George and Martha story when we were done.

I had a lot more planned for the night, but I always do. Thankfully, God blessed the lesson and we had a good time. Some of the new things I am learning, I am trying to incorporate: like the fact that we all are different learners....visual, audio, etc. I tend to teach the way I learn, so I'm trying to expand that to better teach all styles. That is why the logic charts last week and this....that is not my strong point, but I'm practicing using it. Same with the reading stories....crafts is a hands on learner....and acting out will be good for someone else.

Using the Library

If you are not a big fan of your public library, I highly reccomend you go and check it out. I have found our library not only useful but a friendly and fun place for creativity!

Just yesterday, I went to the library looking for a children's science project book to use in my elementary class. As you can see, I came out with a lot more than one! I mentioned to the librarian that I was looking for books about Respect and wasn't having much luck. She then mentioned that in the children's section, there was a book called "A to Zoo", a reference book by topics. I found it on the shelf and was able to find a great list of books around my subject matter. It was so fun! (Well, you might think I'm a little loopy to find delight in such a thing....but it really is a lot of fun for me to have a question to research and then have success! And the library is the perfect place for that!)

Here is the book that I found in the library. I would highly recommend it if you want some story books, lesson books, non-fiction books on a certain topic! It Works For Me!
And here is another book that is helpful!

For more helpful tips and such, go to Works for Me Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Easter Ideas

Oh, I saw these ideas and I just couldn't resist sharing them! Here are some ideas for Sunday school lessons, or at-home lessons.

How many of our kids know the real celebration of Easter? I know so many people that do the easter eggs, and bunnies, and candy etc. but spend less then 30 minutes teaching about the glory of Christ's ressurection! Wouldn't it be neat to set aside some special activities to teach about this story instead? Here are some creative ways I've run across in the past couple days, that I think would make a great lesson.

  1. Empty Tombs
    (Here is a craft idea that would be a perfect time to dramatically tell the story of Jesus.)


  • small clay pot
  • Gray acrylic paint or black marker
  • 3 long twigs and 3 short twigs
  • Black thread
  • Tray with a raised edge
  • Small bucket of dirt
  • Spanish moss
  • 1-inch square white cloth
  • Rock big enough to cover the pot's opening
  • Gravel


  1. Paint the inside and rim of the clay pot.
  2. Make three crosses from the twigs tied together with thread.
  3. Place tray on newspaper. Evenly layer soil on your tray.
  4. Lay the pot on its side in the dirt. Build a hillside tomb by putting more soil over the sides and bottom of the pot, but don't cover the opening.
  5. Arrange moss on top of soil.
  6. Put the three crosses on the hill over the tomb.
  7. Lay the white cloth in the tomb.
  8. Cover the tomb's opening with the large rock.
  9. Add small rocks to make a path to the tomb.
  10. Display your Easter tomb on a table or counter.
  11. On Easter morning, roll away the stone and discover the empty tomb and white grave cloth.
  12. Read John 20:3-8 together.

2. Resurrection Rolls

(Here is a recipie that again, would re-enforce the good news story)


  • 1 package frozen rolls, thawed
  • 1 bag large marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup melted butter or margarine
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon


  1. Press the rolls into flat circles.
  2. Place a marshmallow in the center of each roll and pinch the dough around it.
  3. Roll the marshmallow-filled rolls into round balls.
  4. Brush each ball with butter and sprinkle it with sugar and cinnamon.
  5. Let the rolls rise for 30 to 45 minutes. Then bake them at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes until they're golden brown.
  6. Cut one open. Just like the tomb on Easter Sunday, these buns are empty!

(These two ideas came from Clubhouse)

3. Play pin the tail on the Donkey.

Read the story about Jesus entering Jerusalem on a donkey. Let the kids play pin the tail on the donkey.

4. Read "And the Angels Were Silent"

This book by Max Lucado, allows you to observe (perhaps) how the the final week of Jesus was, and how it was planned from the beginning.

5. Jelly Bean Poem

Check out this link to a neat poem/story using jelly bean colors. You could make a give-a-way project with these.

6. Sing

Here are some songs to sing (these are the only ones I can think of off the top of my head....)

  1. Up From the Grave He Rose
  2. Christ the Lord is Risen Today
  3. He Lives

Monday, March 17, 2008

Teaching Tips

I've been spending some time studying about teaching, studying the age group I teach, and studying the Bible. Here is one list of tips I found challenging to me and my teaching that I thought I'd share:

  • Evaluate your activities. Take a ruthless look at every activity in next week's lesson. Is it teaching kids something new about God or just keeping them busy? Does each activity foster a real relationship with Jesus? Does it help kids see how to use their faith at school or on the playing field? If there are more busywork activities than God- centered ones, you have work to do. Every activity needs to stay focused on a growing relationship with Jesus. Otherwise, you're just filling time.
  • Evaluate your own goals in teaching. Are you there out of duty? Because you like entertaining a crowd. Or because you want to help kids know, love, and follow Jesus? Your personal goals for teaching will influence what you focus on during your lessons. Decide that your goal is to help kids know, love, and follow Jesus.
  • Remove Obstacles. Want to help kids grow spiritually? Then be growing yourself. Read your Bible. Pray. Trust the Holy Spirit to guide you as you teach. When your personal focus and your teaching focus are the same - to know, love, and follow Jesus - your teaching will be powerful. (I would like to add....your teaching will be authentic!)

(Takeout Training for Teachers by Keith Johnson)

Wednesday Night Lessons 101 - Mar 12

Well, I'm a little late posting this because we had a very fun and busy weekend. More about that later....let me catch up on my lesson plans!

I had been trying to work along with the Sunday morning classes, and going from there. This month, they were learning about having an attitude like Christ. Last week we learned about SERVING. BUT, I changed up my lesson plans a little bit. I decided to do a mini series this whole month about one attitude we are supposed to have: RESPECT.

One large thing I learned and applied this past week, was to do it in little bits....to not try and accomplish EVERYTHING in ONE lesson. So, I narrowed it down to one goal: "By the end of this one hour lesson, I would like the kids to know the definition of respect. (i.e what IS respect)"

I then proceeded to form my lesson around that goal. Our memory verse for the day/month is 1 Peter 2:17 "Show proper respect to everyone." I made a construction paper crown with sticker jewels and the memory verse on it to wear. As I was preparing my classroom, I just about took off the crown I made and set it on the table before going upstairs for song service...but then something I had read recently popped into my head "Don't expect the kids to do anything that you yourself won't do." I thought about how I was going to ask the kids to make crowns and wear them around for the week, to remind them how to respect other people. Then I thought about how I didn't really wan't to wear my crown upstairs with the adults during song service. So, I realized I'd better do the right thing, and I put the crown back on. You should've seen the looks I got! ha ha. But, it was encouraging for me to know that I was doing it for God....to remind myself of respect, and to set a good example for the kids. In fact, it turned out great, because the kids stared at me while I played piano and were full of curiosity by the time we got downstairs to our lesson. It was a great lead-in to the story I had about kings and queens.

Here is the outline of my lesson that night (we had 4 kids come):
  1. Read queen story/talk about visiting a palace and the manners we show while there....that is resepct
  2. Make crowns/practice memory verse
  3. Flow chart (for the logical learning style) - Respect in the middle - come up with other words for respect in the outside circles
  4. Play Ball game to pratice memory verse (say one word of verse for everytime you throw the ball while standing in a circle)
  5. Eat snack
  6. Close with prayer and clean up

Thursday, March 13, 2008


I think God knows we can't have a cat in our apartment, because He has brought a couple of cats around our back door just for fun. Here is "my" cat. His name is Lester. He is a big grey tabby cat who has a very laid-back attitude. So far, he hasn't come out of this box outside by our car. It gets nice and sunny in there, and it keeps off the rain. This morning he gave me quite a "look" when I tried to coax him out. So far, I've kept my distance, just said here kitty-kitty and looked at him, because I don't know if he's a stray (wild) or if he's tame. So it's safer to just look at him. :) I think he appreciates that way!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Works For Me...

This is my new recipe book......I love it.
I have many different recipe cards, print-outs, hand scribbles etc that had piled up in my cupboard for a long time. Finally I decided to do something about it. I went through them all, throwing away the ones I no longer would use or never would use, keeping my favorites and some new ones. I used a 3 ring binder, some scrap paper, and some clear plastic page protectors. I taped the recipes to the scrap paper, both sides, and inserted it in the plastic page protector. Voila!
I also did some cutting and pasting to maked more recipes fit on one page.

In the back of the book, I put my weekly and bi-weekly menus. That way, I can look back and see what we've eaten recently, and what we liked or didn't like (I make a note of that on the menu). It also gives me ideas of suppers when I draw a blank. Works for Me! For more handy ideas, go see this blog!

Piano Tuning

Monday night we had the Piano Tuner come over to tune our new/used piano. It was quite an adventure!!! First of all, he tightened some pins and screws and fixed my damper pedal. Then, as he was testing the keys, a little brown knob fell out from among the hammer heads and rolled across the keys. Mathew & I thought it was a piece of wood, but the tuner said "Well, that's as far as we'll go here. Time to take it apart!" It turned out, it was a piece of DOG FOOD! So he pried off all the keys from the keyboard and laid them out on a towel! I had never seen that done before! Turns out, it's quite common he said.

Look at all that dog food! We got out our vaccuum and proceeded to vaccuum up all that dog food and straw (the people from whom we bought the piano have two house dogs, so that's where the dog food came from)

This is how much we got (about 5 cups I suppose). Turns out, a mouse had made his house in our piano before we bought it, and carried the dog food up piece by piece by piece. (Along with a little straw) There were some chew marks on the inside wood, but not enough to harm anything. Thankfully, we didn't find the mouse!!! ha ha He was long gone with all the moving, and it was nice to know we don't have any in our house now (otherwise we would've found him) I guess it's rather common for him to find piano-mouse houses. But it was quite hilarious!
After putting the piano all back together again, he tuned it. It hasn't been tuned in about 6 years, so was a 1/2 step out of tune (that is ALOT in piano terms). Since it was so out of whack, he only tuned it up part of the way (A330) so as to not break the strings. Then, we will get it re-tuned in a couple months to bring it up farther....eventually being in tune (A440). Hopefully we don't find another mouse house!!!!! The piano sounds so much better now! It's lovely!

Monday, March 10, 2008


It's lovely weather outside! Sunny....fresh....puddles on the ground....mud....how can it get better than this right now! I love the seasons God has made, and it's always wonderful when spring comes. I've seen pots of daffodils and boquets of tulips in windows and on counters....makes me think that my flowers will come up soon.

We are getting ready for our Winter Retreat at church, and we've been brainstorming on decorating ideas. Here is a neat list of ideas I found while browsing around....

1. Lighten Up!Do you have velvet drapes or a heavy corduroy sofa? Spring is the time to change them out for lighter looking alternatives. Remove the drapes and replace them with airy sheers. Slipcover the sofa or chairs with paler tones or florals.
2. Rethink the RugsWonderfully cozy area rugs look just right in winter. But when the temperature rises it may be time to roll them up and replace them for summer with sisal or cotton rugs in light, cool colors. (Summer is also be a good time to have heavy rugs cleaned or repaired.)
3. Orient Toward a View If your furniture is centered in front of a fireplace, think about ways to rearrange the look for summer. Change the focal point away from the mantel to a view of a garden, placing the conversation grouping to take advantage of the garden scene just outside.
4. Create an Inviting PorchSummer living often moves out to a porch or deck, but even if your home does not have these amenities you can get the look and feel of a porch inside. Introduce a few garden chairs, accessories, and floral fabrics into a family room, for example. You’ll get the feel of the outdoors every time you’re in the room.
5. Store the SilksRemove dusty silk flower arrangements from your rooms and store them away for a few months. Instead, bring in fresh green plants, flowering pots, or elegant orchids. These lively touches can breathe life into winter-weary spaces.
6. Re-Accessorize Time to rework your accessories and makeover your shelves. Clean winter dust off the shelves and begin to replace objects with an eye toward keeping the look light. Bring out your floral china or white ironstone, set up a collection of pitchers or glass, and include plants and picture frames as well.
7. Think Sheer Sheer curtains, sheer tablecloths, sheer bedskirts, and pillows – all of these say “summer” louder than almost any other element. Look for plain, embroidered, or printed sheer designs that complement your interiors.
8. De-Clutter Now Look for organizing solutions for your home. Any spot that is overcrowded or unorganized can drain your energies as it swallows objects and fill your life with clutter. A visit to a home store can yield products to contain clutter wherever it exists.
9. Clean out the Fireplace Now is the perfect time to sweep away the ashes of winter fires and start fresh. Fill your firebox with silk plants, an arrangement of candles, or an attractive display of beautiful birch logs. Or, cover the box with an attractive folding screen decoupaged with summer florals.
10. Sweep Off the Steps Bring the look of summer to your front door by cleaning up the area. Wash the door and windows and touch up the paint if needed. Hang a silk flower wreath on the front door too. If you have a large porch you may also have room for pots of colorful spring flowers.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Just Tickeled My Funny Bone....

Why is it called lipstick if you can still move your lips?

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Deals of the Day

Well, I took the time to do my grochery shopping a bit earlier this week. In fact, I was hunting for deals at Walgreens (as seen on MoneySavingMom), and I knew that the last couple of weeks they were sold out of items by mid-week. Sadly, I missed out on the deals again.....and it's only Tuesday! We must have other deal hunters in Bemidji to be sure! Anyway, I did end up stopping at Target, MarketPlace, and Luekens....here is some of what I got (our 2 week grocheries):

My most exciting deals were the string cheese: free at Target after coupon, and the tomato sauce: free at Luekens after coupon. The celery, marshmallows, cool whip, and Ravioli were all 88 cents... I had been watching for ravoili to try a new recipie someday. The chicken was in the reduced meat section and the canteloupe was a great deal too. Normally we get bananas for the week, but this week we will eat oranges! The Pizza Rolls were a splurge...at 25 cents I thought I'd have them on hand. :) Juice was on sale for 99 cents which is pretty good for us, so I stocked up on that and then got powdered milk, which is expensive, but was on sale for $13 and I had been putting it off for a long time! So, after adding it all up, I spent about $70......$35 for two weeks. (I got milk and eggs too which are not in the picture). It was so much fun! I was all chatty and bubbly when Mathew got home to show him all our "deals!"

It's a Yungle!

This weekend my mom and I took a trip to Minneapolis for a teacher's convention. We stayed at my sister's house....this is what it looked like!
Almost as soon as we were inside, Sammi pulled on our hands and wanted to show us "Upstairs!" So we went upstairs and there were MORE trees! She snuck inside, turned around and with big eyes and mysterious voice said, "It's a Yungle!"
I'm even more excited because I got to take one home!


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