Friday, April 30, 2010

If I could choose, I would rather

If I had to choose:

I would rather walk than run.

I would rather smile than frown.

I would rather whisper than yell.

I would rather eat ice cream than cake.

I would rather do anything in the world than eat worms.

*thanks to the gypsy mama for the post idea :)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

A sweet tale at sugar tails...

I guest posted over at a Sugar Tails blog today... read a sweet tale of how we got to be here in Peru. 

Thank you Glowin' Girl for the privilege of sharing with you and your readers!  It was a pleasure!

Pictures in collage courtesy of the following photographers, from top left to right bottom: 

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

On the Chipurana with Micah Tuttle: Day Two

We're posting Micah's trip journal over the next few days (he's back! hallelujah!).
So, for the next couple of days, my posting energies will be focused on our ministry blog. :)

Have a read here.

The first night the guys had an open air evangelistic meeting, 
and the next day were heartily received to present the gospel in the public school!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

On the Chipurana with Micah Tuttle [must see video]

I've got a new post with footage of my amazing in-house Man vs. Wild tv personality...
my very own beloved. :)

Here's the link:

On the Chipurana River with Micah Tuttle

Come on, you must say...
Isn't he just dreamy?!


oh yeah.

Monday, April 26, 2010


A tiny sneak peek at tomorrow's post over at 66 books...

image by artfinan

"My iniquities have gone over my head; like a heavy burden, they are too many for me."
"But for you, O Lord, do I wait; it is You, O Lord my God, who will answer."
"Do not forsake me, O Lord! O my God, be not far from me!  Make haste to help me, O Lord of my salvation!"
Psalm 38: 4, 15, 21-22

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Random Linkage

7 Random Links:

photo by inya

The single most inspiring blog I've ever read.  hands down.  I'm sure you'll agree :)

5 basic writing tips.

This is an excellent idea for crafty kids studying the states & capitols... although you wouldn't catch me wearing it as a pin... use as a game piece or magnet, or something?

WOW! I just found something REALLY cool!! I'm SUPER excited. I can drap and drop the bookmarks from my firefox toolbar right onto this post in blogger!! (did you know you can do that?!) Very nice. Okay, on with the links...

Seeds Family Worship is really cool for Bible songs for kids:

The Book Depository. Free delivery worldwide on all our books.  You had me at 'free'...

One Million Arrows: Raising Your Children to Change the World, a book I'm currently reading for review.  Go check it out!

The author of the book, has some guest posters one of whom I know!!  How's that?  Joy (also from the Portland area) writes about the Obstacles to Living in the Vision.  This post was my favorite.

Saturday, April 24, 2010


We're painting our impressions today...

See more here.

Ants in my... pizza?

I'm faced with a heart-wrenching dilemma... I mean what's a girl to do?

I mean it's not every day that I make pizza!

Trouble is, a few minutes ago, I walked into the kitchen and I saw the last piece of pizza where I'd left it when I had to off and tuck the kids away to beds.  Fast forward an hour because I completely forgot about it #1. because I'm exhausted, and #2. I sat down to put some mp3s on for Bria and got distracted reading e-mails... 'nough said.

ANYWAY, there I was, about to turn off the light in the kitchen, ice water in hand... when what doth appear to my wandering eyes, but a plate with some pizza and yummy toppings to boot.  Oh yay, methinks... there's leftovers, shoot!  Suddenly, a despairing thought flashes across my cerebrum, 'oh the ants!'  yet still hopeful, 'maybe they missed it'.  I take one slow step in that direction, and things are looking good... yes, maybe?  nothing to be seen from the top aerial view.  So, I pick up the piece for a closer examination, and please, I'm NOT exaggerating, I see the swarming 100+ ants on the underside of the crust.  AAAwwwww. NO!

Devastation begins to set in and I actually begin to consider that these tiny little ants aren't nothing compared to the big ones that they fry and eat here in the jungle!  I blow, I flick, I wipe... and the ants crawl up my arms.  But the pizza!  Not fully satisfied I study the piece for movement... considering.  What would you do?!  Pizza is a special treat!  and they weren't family size either... didn't take long for the 5 hungry little mouths to devour!  And now?  my piece has ants on it.  this is tragedy.

Well, what do you think I did?

I ate it.  Of course. Like a good missionary.  :)

There are starving children out there you know. 

And you know what?  I feel adventurous.  accomplished.  I feel exhilarated... okay not really, but it's true I'm not as hungry now.  And I'm glad I did it.  If for no other reason than I got to write this silly little post ;)

Friday, April 23, 2010

Catching up...

Just in case you too have been thinking it's been FAR too long since I wrote anything ministry related...

...and since we're in the ministry mood, you'll probably like to know that in the women's Bible study*  we've been studying John 1-3.  We had 3 new ladies last week, two of whom had never set their foot inside our church before.  yay!  Last week, we studied THE verse, you know the one.  everybody and their brother knows it: 

photo courtesy of ba1969

John 3:16



the world

that He GAVE

his ONLY

begotten SON



in HIM

shall not perish, but have everlasting LIFE.

simple. profound. goodness.

oh YES.

"Just as an infant's hand can grasp the acorn which holds "the giant oak" within it, so the youngest child who can lisp "the Nicodemus sermon" may with truth be said to know the gospel, and yet in every word of it there is a depth and mystery of meaning which God alone can fathom.  Tell me what it means to perish, and enable me to grasp the thought of a life that is eternal. Measure for me the abyss of man's wickedness and guilt during all the ages of his black and hateful history that I may realize in some degree what that world is which God has loved; and then, pausing for a moment in wonder at the thought that such a world could be loved at all, hasten on to speak of love that gave the Son.  And when you have enabled me to know this love, which cannot be known, for it passes knowledge, press on still and tell me of the sacrifice by which it has measured and proved itself - His Son, His Only-begotten Son.  Make me to know, in the fullness of knowledge, Him who declared that the Father alone could know Him.  And when you have achieved all this, I turn again to the words of Christ, and I read that it was God who so loved the world, and I crave to know Who and What God is.  I can rise to the thought of love, perhaps even to an evil world, and the conception of love giving up an only son is not beyond me; but when I come to know that it was God who loved, that God was the giver, and God's Son the gift, I stand as a wondering worshipper in the presence of the Infinite, and confess that such knowledge is too high for me."

Sir Robert Anderson, The Gospel and Its Ministry

*(took place last night - since Micah's gone, I had to got to stay home with the kids)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I may be losing my mind.  I just saw that yesterday's didn't post until just now because I saved it as a draft instead of publishing it... and a wonderful friend of mine wrote me today reminding me that I haven't updated our ministry blog for a LONG time.  Oh my.

Well.  I am thankful that I still can have a piece of mind even while I'm losing the rest of it.  :) heheh.  pun fully intended.

and on the thankful note, here is my gratitude list this thankful thursday:

I'm thankful for...

  1. a mind that works... even if sporadically ;)
  2. phones in remote villages that connect-the-hearts
  3. hearing the voice I long for
  4. kids who are super
  5. sleepy girls
  6. boys who chatter on endlessly together until late, if allowed to
  7. one boy particular who then wakes up early to care for the monkey boy  
  8. A Protective Hand while our protector is away
  9. Marmees
  10. study that refines this unschooled mama
  11. scattered showers
  12. thunder, 
  13. ...and the oohs and ahhs that come afterwards.
  14. letters from friends.  {Kyla you are just SO sweet.  I love you.}
  15. geography; especially plateaus at the moment
  16. repentance - a wonderful invention
  17. Leading Little Ones to God
  18. hearing them pray
  19. boys who wash dishes; several times a day
  20. animahs cookiesss mas [mya talk for: more animal crackers]
  21. backward boy hugs
  22. shortbread
  23. a boy who now beats his momma in math races... weird?! very.
  24. psalms
  25. agony of sin - to keep us from it
  26. sureness of salvation
  27. women's bible studies
  28. substitute teachers
  29. oh-my-goodness-side-splitting-laughter
  30. my hilarious brother

holy experience

Family Spotlight: the Adventurer

this is an old picture... ahh, but he looks exactly the same :)

My beloved husband is an adventurer.  That's putting it lightly  :)  He travels like the natives, eats like the natives, wishes he was a native.  He is having the time of his life.  He loves what he does.  Adventurous Good Newsboy.  Still, while he's gone I miss him.  I'm still waiting for a phone call saying he's okay.  Yep, there is actually a phone in each village. one phone. and even after one waits their turn to use the phone, it is not a little trying to talk because of the poor connection... even so, I can't wait for my phone to ring.

We're doing alright without him.  Our life goes on as normal.  It's just that we are rather fond of him and all.  So, I while I wait for the phone that won't ring, I've made a little something to remind me of when I'll see my beloved again.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Monkey links

So, I posted the Monkey Boy video that I took yesterday over on our homeschool blog HERE.

It took 285 minutes to upload.  yikes.  here's a snapshot from the video...

Here are some more silly monkeys:

Brown Capuchin Romance

Monkeys Going Nuts!

Lime Dancing

Monday, April 19, 2010

Nothing new under the sun

“If there’s a book you really want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”

—Toni Morrison

Image courtesy of pepo

In 2005, 172,000 books were published.  Phew!  The thought of how many books are written and published each year is rather daunting.  And considering all that content, we realize that there must certainly be nothing new under the sun.

True.  So true.

Then why do people keep writing books?  Why do I wish to someday write a book?  I don't know.  It's weird.  Illogical even.  We shall see.

I cannot for the life of me find a portion from one of Elisabeth Elliot's books that has greatly encouraged me to not give up on the idea of writing SOMEDAY in spite of the hoardes of books already written...  but here's a link with some advice from her that will have to suffice.

Anyway, on that note, I've got my eyes peeled for co-authors... ;)  I have one already on contract... right Deb? :)  heheh.

*Thank you Kim at In Our Write Minds for the quote!  

Sunday, April 18, 2010

If I Could Ask God Anything, Kathryn Slattery

While the 181 questions/answers in this book seem to have touched on everything that a child might ask (and even some they might not), I really felt the answers given were lacking in biblical substance. This is probably because the author's aim was to not cross any denominational lines.  But for that, in my opinion MANY of the answers are overly simplified and leave much to be desired. The questions include a wide variety from, 'Who is God?', 'What did Jesus wear?', 'What is the Golden Rule?' to 'Why do some Bibles have red letters?'.

My main sadness is not that this book exists but that the need or demand for it appears to exist.  Is the Bible hard to understand and to explain to children?  A few answers are based on a verse stretched out of context, and others are just too vague to be completely true.  This is why I cannot recommend this book.  It seems to me an attempt to bring God down to a child's level, instead of inspiring that child to wonder at God's divine and infinite awesomeness. If you're looking for a reference guide to help answer your kids questions, I'd say look a little further.  I know that there are more truly biblical alternatives available.   

* I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Impression of Peru

Okay, so Monet never traveled to Peru.  But if this doesn't strike me as EXACTLY like a place I've seen near to where we are in Tarapoto... well, except for there wasn't a lovely house on it... I'd have to build that. Okay, I guess it was slightly more GREEN.  Well, anyway...

Here's a painting of my dream house in Peru :)

We're studying Monet this term in our homeschool.  See more of our favorites HERE.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Interesting Headlines...

Both these headlines were on the yahoo main page this morning and I thought it was interesting that both were hot topics for christians...   the Bible and it's principles will NOT be tolerated.

"Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived..." 

An anti-spanking article.  Not that we are vociferous proponents for spanking, but we certainly use it and find that it IS beneficial for all children.  We use lots of different strategies when teaching our kids and applying consequences.  Of course when we spank, each child is different so we spank our children accordingly and we strive for never spanking in anger or as a reaction.  I agree with the study done as far as that goes... the improper use of spanking will turn out negatively... bully parents turn out bully kids.  It is easy to use spanking to bully your kids into doing what you want them to do.  That's wrong.  Here's the article:

An anti-expression article.  Obviously, I am not an avid supporter of all forms of free expression.  There are ways that people can express themselves that are hurtful to others... how do you legislate that nowadays when everyone is out to sue everybody else?  Take away all freedom of expression.  Logical.  The thing that was interesting to me about this article was that both images displayed had football players with Scripture displayed on their face paint... so the message is, that's what's being outlawed.  The messages "that threaten innocent American consumers with genuine individual expression..."  Clearly, people could put stuff on their faces that is truly offensive... well the NFL's answer is to rule it all out.  Read more here:

"...But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acqainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work."    2 Timothy 3:12-17

Speaking of corporal punishment and football in the same post... I just thought I'd take this opportunity to point out how AWESOME my husband is... he was QB in 8th grade.  He tore his ACL while playing football after highschool... he's so tough!

My husband rocks!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

What's different around here?

Have you ever tried to notice what's unique about something that you have LONG since grown used to?  Hah!  Well, it's fun!  A friend of mine, no wait, I should say my dearest friend Deb, has asked me several times to post some pictures of our living situation so that she could better envision what life is like for us here in Peru.  Well, without further ado, Deb this one's for you ;)

 driving in Peru is certainly one of the most exhilerating cultural experiences

Living in Peru is different.  

Electric shower, rustic toilets, washing dishes with cold water, screens instead of glass in windows, metal roof, mud road.  Open-air vegetable market.  Bugs, bats, monkeys, rats.  Oh my!  A good friend of mine who was a missionary in Austria for many years always reminded herself, "It's not weird, just different."  And that's a very true and helpful perspective indeed.  While our neighbors and the people we live nearby live very differently indeed from what we are used to, we have been blessed with an exceptionally finished house, so our everyday adjustments to living in the jungle have been graciously eased.  I cannot tell you how thankful I am for this.  :)

This is our school room/office facing the backyard.

Living in Peru is nice.

Many Peruvians assume the reason we're here is because we must really like it here.  While that isn't completely untrue, it's not complete either.  There are many truly extraordinary and interesting things about living here, TONS of ministry opportunities, and we even have a housekeeper (which occasionally truly has serious drawbacks as well*).  However, it is the priceless life experience and the great exchange of ideas that come with the adoption of a 2nd language and culture that is irreplaceable.  That, and being privileged to identify with Christ in His great crossing of cultures... Amazing love. How can it be?

Living in Peru by faith.

We are here in Peru because we are totally committed to preaching Christ and doing what He has for us to do.  We don't live here because we like it better than other places.  Certainly not I.  ;)  We are aware that God has prepared us specially and placed us strategically where we are for now.  We are unabashedly happy to pour ourselves out in His service. 

This is the internet cafe down the street when 
we didn't have internet in the house.
*I expect for those who've not been in a comparable culture or in a similar situation, you may think it would be just dreamy to have a housekeeper!  Surely the benefits would always outweigh the difficulties!?  ...sometimes they do.  sometimes.  and boy is it a blessing straight from the Father when that is the case.  The subject of having a housekeeper has been a serious matter for prayer for us.  Believe it or not housekeeper woes are a very real discouragement and trial for many missionaries.  We are SO grateful that the Lord chose and sent the practically PERFECT lady to help us in our ministry over the last year!  Serious praises here!  We are so grateful.  Simply put, I would find it very nearly impossible to make it here in the jungle without her.  I thank God for her.  :)

Marmee and me in the kitchen.

You can see a few more random home-ish pictures in 
our photo album HERE.  
I'll try to post more as I think of it.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sometimes I can't help it...

my heart spilled HERE yesterday...

photo by PocketAces

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Family Spotlight: #2

Today's Family Focus Spotlight is on:


in order of appearance: Javen, Cullen, Siah

Cullen made his way into our family before we thought we were ready for him.  I discovered I was pregnant again when Javen was only 4 months old!  That was a shocker!  But God knew better than we did way back then, and we've sure been glad ever since that Cullen is a part of our family!

Cullen has always been a stong child.  Strong in limb, strong in will.  He has the potential to be a strong leader someday.  He is already a leader among the kids in our family.  
We are especially proud of the way he is beginning to take initiative & responsibility around the house.

Cullen loves a challenge and takes competition very seriously.  
He excels in math and enjoys sports and physical activity.

  He is an example to his younger siblings.  

His favorite food must be bread and milk... we can't seem to keep up with him in this area :)

We are proud of how he fits in in this culture, how he approaches people and offers a firm handshake.  We look forward to seeing him developing a leadership role at church and among his friends as a light to the world in this crooked and perverse generation.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY 11th birthday Cullen!!
We love you :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Lists & Books & Booklists

I love lists. I think that's why I very much look forward to the 10 on the 10th... :)  I'm weird. but not abnormal, I think.  LOTS of my lists involve books... another fetish ;)  which is NOT weird, and very normal. I think. 

photo courtesy of Mattox

10 books I'm going to read with my kids this school term:

  1. Shakespeare's original, The Tempest - I know, I'm getting weirder and weirder as I go along.
  2. Carry a Big Stick: The Uncommon Heroism of Theodore Roosevelt
  3. The Burgess Bird Book for Children - for the second time through, this time with my darling daughter
  4. James Herriot's Treasury for Children - sweet animal stories, and it's been almost long enough that I've just about forgotten most of the stories since I read this with my boys (I can't stand reading a book twice unless it's that good.  Same with movies... until I forget how they end.)
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings - We've read the Hobbit, The Fellowship of the Rings and we're 2/3 through The Two Towers.  I'm LOVING the time with my boys and that they are 12 & 11 and still are begging me to spend time with them (reading aloud of course, but who cares?!)
  6. Do Hard Things: A Teenage Rebellion Against Low Expectations - bought this and plan read with Javen over the course of this next year or so.  Mainly to get him thinking about the future and that childhood is coming to an end and manhood just around the corner.
  7. Heaven for Kids - we've been reading this aloud during morning devotional time
  8. Little Women - I still can't believe that my boys LIKE this book, taking into account the title and all. :)
  9. Making Brothers and Sisters Best Friends
    - we've been working our way through this book for the last year and a half or so.  It is REALLY good for them to think of intentionally working on their relationships with each other.  I highly recommend this for families with multiple children.
  10. the Bible - and NO, I'm not just saying that because I have to...  :)  I really hope that through our reading and memorizing this next term and over the course of the next several years, the Word of God will awaken them to their lostness without a Savior, that they will make decisions to follow hard after the Living God, and that they will live life well in light of eternity.

PS.  When I googled (or should I say swagbucked) 'list maker' I found this cool thing - Word List Maker.  It might be fun for Scrabble addicts or... now what was that FB game called that I used to play?  Kind of like... Boggle... oh, I can't remember.  I wasn't ever very good at it... Amy Miller ALWAYS beat me by a million! ;)

PPS.  Okay.  I am aware that it isn't the 10th anymore... it's just that I so wanted to do this every month and I'm not going to shift my posts around just so that it can be on the 10th.  I'm just not going to do it, even though I really want to :) ...perfectionist tendencies you know.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

God our Savior

Just as Israel stood on the wilderness side of the sea, and saw Pharaoh and his hosts in death upon the shore, it is ours to gaze upon the triumphs of the cross. God there has mastered sin, abolished death, and destroyed him who had the power of death.

God has become our Saviour.
Our trust is not in His mercy, but in Himself
Not in divine attributes, but in the living God.  

~ Sir Robert Anderson, K.C.B, LL.D

"Behold, God is my salvation; 
I will trust and not be afraid: 
for the Lord JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; 
He also is become my salvation."

Saturday, April 10, 2010


Okay, so if you're not into some company tracking your every move then you won't like swagbucks.  But didn't you know they're already watching us anyway?  ...advertisers are very clever.  Well.  I don't really like the thought of that.  But do I have to like it to take advantage of it?  :)  Until I think otherwise, I'm not going to let a little social phobia stop me from accumulating some Starbucks (note the similarity in name... do they do that on purpose?!) by earning swagbucks!

Search & Win

How to earn swagbucks:

  • You use the swagbucks search = you earn points.  Slowly.  You can do this from a toolbar you can install or by setting their search as your homepage.  It is powered by google so we're all good there. I will update as time goes by to let you know how this ends up working out, it it's too slowly, I may end up giving up on the whole thing...  we shall see.  I just love the thought of gift cards for doing what I already do!
  • There are random winners all the time as well.
  • You shop from the listed merchants = you earn points, sometimes double points.  Check out the LONG list of participating stores!

So, basically if you do a lot of searching  and shopping online, just check out swagbucks first to see if you can earn yourself some free points in the process applicable to Starbucks/Target/itunes/Walmart giftcards.  Yay.

**If you don't really want or use giftcards, then earn some swagbucks, buy some giftcards and then send them to your favorite missionary family!!  [hint, hint]  ;)  hahahahah!

Search & Win

Friday, April 9, 2010

I'm lovin' PICTURES...

I LOVE picasa
a super quick way to manage, upload, store pictures online
and make quick collages :)

"I store many of my treasured memories in pictures..."

Here are some pictures from our latest roadtrip...

thanks Marsha for this!

Another thing I know I'm really gonna love:
I've heard here and there about swagbucks.  Have you heard about it?  I had no idea.  I'd heard a lot right around Christmas time since several bloggers were oohing and awing about buying their gifts with swagbucks. I was so out of the know.  But I just read up about from Tidy Mom's blog.. want to learn more?  I'll be posting about it tomorrow. Just do what you are already doing... google it (whatever it may be) and get paid in points!!  Redeem your points at Starbucks! Target, Amazon giftcard, or cash in on great prizes like an iphone or DVDs.  Think of it like collecting pop cans.  5 points here and there all add up :)  Ready to sign up now?  Click HERE. 

and don't forget:
If you heard it from me, use my link!  I get referral points!!

Search & Win