June 28, 2006

Happy Birthday Peter!

It's hard to believe you guys are all growing up. I suppose that's what comes from feeding you....

: p


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More cheese cake. It's funny how one person will pick a type of cake and everyone follows suit. :-)

This is not related to the birthday I just liked the color and how it turned out. No touching up.
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June 26, 2006

I seem to have this big writing block tonight. Life is never boring. That‘s for certain. But, somehow tonight I can’t seem to put anything in words. Blah. I’ve been told if you have a writing block you should just start writing….

Ok, here’s something…

I read this yesterday afternoon.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
1 Cor. 13:4-7 NIV

And though I’ve sung it, read it, and memorized it for years some of it became SO alive to me for the first time. (And certainly convicting!) It is very interesting and amazing how circumstances change or situations arise and all of a sudden it can be applied in a way you didn’t know existed. So, God is awesome!

Now for the very boring stuff….(skip this if you have a life)

We had a band concert tonight. In fact, we had one Friday - in the rain! Thankfully we were protected from the weather by the lovely (?) white bandstand. Still, it’s not much fun to make music with a soggy oboe reed. (Not mention the fact I didn’t like the song selection!) The humidity really played havoc on the reed players that night. No reed = no worries?? Why couldn’t I have stuck to the flute?? lol Too late to lament that fact. Once they find out you can play oboe they’ve got ya for life. It’s kinda like the black hole. You will never come back …..mwahahah! I guess I should just be happy they want me and quit complaining. :-p Only, I know I’m going to have to start a regular practice schedule if I want to keep this up. My mouth was killing me. I did get a break on the last song because our dear conductor handed me the baton half way through the Washington Post March. I could have died! We had talked about surprising Bonnie with the job. I wasn’t expecting him to forget who we talked about! I guess the joke was on me…. But, anyway it was kinda fun. It was so different standing in the conductors place! You have all these eyes busily scanning the music and occasionally they look up and see you waving the little stick. Deep inside you wonder if everyone isn’t laughing. Ok. The music is in 6/8. Are we in cut time? Uh…. 1 2 3 4. I guess that works. Ignore the written music. Down, left, right, up. Ok…this feels right. Oh no… Will everyone please play a little softer? Thank you. OK…. now build. Hey, this is kinda fun. Oh NO! It’s going to end without me. Oops. So, I ended with the stick in the air. *phew* It’s over!!

I was going to work with some the pictures we took in NH but it seems they are all on Bonnie’s laptop which is not here right now. I guess all those with dial-up will be happy. ;-) No pics tonight!

For having a writing block I sure said enough….lol

Test me, O LORD, and try me, examine my heart and my mind;
for your love is ever before me, and I walk continually in your truth.
Psalm 26:3 NIV

June 23, 2006

While we were in Pennsylvania we had the pleasure of going ice skating. Fun times! We were not allowed to play gospel music over the sound system since it was a 'homeschool day', no discrimination and the whole bit. But, I guess even if we had been a Christian group they would have had to hold to the same non-discrimination standards. This news story, dated June 21, 2006, states
The New York Division of Human Rights threatened Len and Terry Bernardo, owners of the Skate Time 209 rink in Accord, with an investigation because the rink plays Christian music during certain hours.


The good part is they are threatening the news paper who advertised the event
..for “aiding and abetting” unlawful discrimination..

This is crazyness people.

Get the whole scoop here.

June 20, 2006

We're back!

Does that count as an update? : p

An edit coming later today with more details....


What an awesome weekend! The Lord is so good! I've already used up the time I allotted for blogging just resizing pics, so, I'll try to skip around to the good parts. ;-)

Our trip started in Surry, NH. If you want to get technical it started at our house, but, I think you all knew that already.

Our concert for 'Cousin Isaac's' 50th Anniversary Party went fine. It was our very first concert using our new mixer! Good bye analog and welcome to the wonderful world of digital mixing. Dad did a great job getting it all ready and directing us to help him. We actually had it set up (in a very small space!) and ready to go in time. We had plenty of 'space' before the concert to eat and relax. Taking pictures helped time pass...here's another version of the C&B shot.

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I took more flower/nature pics but, don't worry, I won't post them today. ;-)

We started up to Concord, the capitol of New Hampshire, and met with the Bartletts at the church we were scheduled to sing at the next morning. We felt SO welcome even before we arrived! We set up and ate pizza. Sam's Club has great pizza, BTW.

**more second edit**
Let me use the space here to thank the Bartletts again for all the hard work they did! Mr. Ed smashed his hand on a table setting up for us at the church and showed up after we arrived with a bandaged hand! They had just come from the emerengcy room! We are so blessed to know you guys. Thanks again!

***end edit***

I think I had the most comfortable sleep in the bus that night. Dad got a new mattress and guess who got his old one? :-)

Next morning we had a great service. Mr. Bartlett took pictures for us. Thank you again!

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We drove over to Gilmanton IW (which stands for Iron Works, FYI) and set up for the night concert. It was interesting being in the car behind and watching the bus drive along.

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After we set up we started jamming a little. But, we didn't stay long because Nathan was very anxious to get over to the lake and swim!

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The church was quite old. The pews were 'boxes' with doors on them. Pretty interesting! The concert went very well. The people afterward were so sweet! We had some people travel over from the morning church to hear us again.

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The next morning we had breakfast made by the Bartletts! Then we took turns going out on the boat. This is probably the second time I can remember being in a boat in my life. The lake was so pretty. THEN! The real action started around noon when we got ready for water skiing. We had never done this before! The guys (and Bonnie) were really excited. Vincent did a great job and got up on his first try. Way to go!!

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Peter had some trouble getting off because of the boat speed which wasn't fast enough.

He was determined.

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He was working it like he'd done it all his life by the time we were done.
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We swung back to trade passengers. Bonnie was next. We got some nice video footage of her attempts. She did a terrific job once she got up!!!

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Nathan was next. He had trouble keeping the skis in the water. :-) But he quickly figured out how to work the skis when he got up!
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I...well, I'd rather not talk about it. LOL! I fell twice on the lake and had multiple attempts getting started. But, I know I did it because I have sore muscles and a sun burn. :-) The camera was the ticket to go out on all the trips. Peter and Matthew took the pics of me.
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(The mood - 'Let's try this again!' :-p)
(ok...more edit... check out Bonnie's blog for a pic of me out of the water.)

Mom and dad were so cute on shore!! They posed for this but that was the idea!

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Mr. Bartlett was so kind to invite us to do this!! Thanks again! Boy, we'll never forget this trip!

We ate, traded pictures, and got a few group shots before saying goodbye!

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I guess I didn't skip too much. :-) It would have taken a week to recount everything that happened. So, in a way, I did.

I hope I don't have too many typos in here...I'm running out of time to edit!!!

June 16, 2006

The fact is I should be packing right now, but this is probably the last time I’ll have to post until next week and by the time next week rolls around this will be old news.

If you read Bonnie’s blog you’ll know we’re visiting NH this weekend. I’m excited! These weekend trips are great. I still like long road trips, but there is something nice about knowing you’re not far from home.

Some other news (some of this is repeat of Bonnie’s blog)….

Matthew had a birthday. He turned 11.

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The cheese cake was really good, BTW. (The ice cream cake was good too.)

We had some nice company last evening. Meet the Wiebe family! A very talented family. We’re so blessed to know them! We spent many, many, many hours at their house recording and mixing.

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That little guy in the front row is so cute! He listens to our cd everyday and thinks Hannah is the best. In fact he calls "Honey In The Rock" “Hannah’s cd".

This is Vincent and Devan explaining about the skunk they found in the backyard. Thankfully we didn’t have to give anyone a tomato bath. However, I didn’t open my window that night!
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I had the first violin lesson of my entire life Wednesday. I was expecting a list about 2 feet long of everything I was doing wrong. I’m sure I have plenty of things to work on (lol) but he was very encouraging. We went to the fiddle shop before the lesson to drop off my bow, which needed to be re-haired. It was a house they had converted to a store, so it was kind neat inside. They didn’t have a single bass! Only cellos and violins (and probably violas, but I did look very hard). The guy comes down, looks at my bow and says it will be ready in a few hours. I’m in shock. Most of the places I called told me it would be a week or more unless I wanted to pay extra. So needless to say I left there praising God! I have a long bow to use this weekend!! Yes! And now maybe I can get back to ‘real’ practicing.

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I noticed that the neighbor’s roses bloomed right before I left for work. So I had to wait until tonight to get some shots. I took about 100 pictures. A couple of my favorites….

(I wish I could add the fragrance. You’ll just have to imagine that part.)

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Have a nice weekend everyone!

June 15, 2006

I was looking up subject matter unrelated to photography and found this gallery yesterday. Oh wowie. Talk about neat photography! Photoshop looks like an absolutely cool program. And now of course I want to get a new camera…Haha. Maybe I should just learn to use the one I have?? : p

I also found this site as well.

Experimenting with contrast, color, etc., on Corel, I created these.

It's becoming addictive!!

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June 11, 2006

I was going to post about how horrible I thought the concert went this afternoon. We had so many issues today, it wasn’t funny. But, I was encouraged to ‘cast my cares’! And that’s just what I’m gonna do.

You all might enjoy some pics. Thanks to Jenn for taking these for us!!
The LaClaires! They are great!!
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That is all of us.
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Our sound man. :-)
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Bonnie sang "God Put A Yodel" as an encore!

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They just ate it up...:-)

Hope you all had a great weekend...Monday comes way too early sometimes.

Oh, and be sure to watch the Discovery Health channel tonight at 8:00pm (EST) to see the Duggar family. You might see the Dortignacs as well. (Edit: Sorry guys, I guess that's what I get for multi-tasking!!)

June 10, 2006

We just got back from singing here. If you don't feel like clicking on the link, I'll just tell you, it was the Relay for Life at the Franklin Country Fair Grounds.

Boy, it sure feels like it could be 4:00pm right now. We pulled out of the driveway this morning sometime between 6:15-30am-ish. I really couldn’t tell you exactly. I was half asleep. :-p

Soon after we arrived they brought us three golf carts and we made two trips to carry our stuff over the muddy track to the shelter of a big white tent. We had to play under the tent because of threatening skies. We would have been more visable if we were on the two flatbed trailers close to the track. I'm not sure how much sound actually traveled out of our area. Surprisingly, they hadn’t felt more than a sprinkle all night, but better to be safe than sorry! We were late starting but I don’t think anyone minded too much. Some of these people had been up all night so I guess they liked us because anything that included sitting down sounded good! LOL We were on the second verse of Man of Galilee and the tent flap behind us, due to a large gust of wind, knocked the guitar over. The music that wasn’t bound in the folder flew off the stand. It was quite crazy for about 60 seconds while the sound guys ran after the music and got our instruments gathered and righted. Ouch. We were singing through all this…at least most of us. Lol The cool 58 degree temps didn’t help our stiff fingers but we ran through a new piano duet. Four hands on two pianos. Bonnie’s yodeling was a big hit, again! I may have mentioned this before, but, it’s hilarious to watch the faces on the audience when she breaks out with ’ah dee oh dee leyee’. Hehe. :-)

So, all in all, an OK concert. This is really practice for tomorrow when we have to sing in front of people we know. 8-O

Afterward we gave out Cds and did PR.

Inside, after the concert.
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Peter, Bonnie, and Matthew.
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Bonnie, our new friend Elizabeth, and me.

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You can tell we’re long hair fans….

We stopped to go shopping on the way home and since I didn't want to shop, or wait in the bus, I took some pics. :-P I'm seriously not happy with how my camera is focusing up close. Half the stuff I had to delete. Bonnie thought I should get a lens made for close up.

Something in the daisy family? Probably not. But, hey, the colors are right!
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And clover. (I think...)
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June 07, 2006

Oh an update I shall write...

It's been a little while since I've had access to a computer for long enough to write anything substantial. Between paper work, a broken printer, deadlines, accidentally booking two concerts for the same time (!), and two 'big' concerts this weekend some of us have been a little stressed. Prayers for my dad as he deals with all this are appreciated. It's taken a toll on him physically.

I'm sitting here on the comfortable couch with Bonnie's laptop. It's dark and rainy outside and a mild, but cool spring wind reminds me that summer has not arrived in its fullness. But even through the gloomy skies and mist that covers the hills I can see God's hand at work. From the tiny droplets of water that cling to the delicate flowers and leaves, to the varied shades of grey in the sky, to the loveliness of mist on the green country side to the clean cool air I breathe; it all reminds me of the wonders of my God. It all points me to Him, the creator of the universe, who is awesome and deserving of all my praise. And again as I look the dense patches of fog which collects, shifts and dissipates illustrates that my tomorrow on this earth is not guaranteed, and neither is yours. Like a vapor is life, here today, gone in an instant. Indeed my very next breath is from Him.

Psalm 65:9-13
You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water to provide the people with grain, for so you have ordained it.
You drench the furrows and level its ridges; you soften it with showers and bless its crops.

I've been thoroughly blessed this week by the hymn, Be Thou My Vision.

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me save that Thou art--
Thou my best thought, by day or by night,,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word;
I even with Thee and Thou with me Lord;
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son,
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Riches I heed not, nor man's empty praise,
Thou mine inheritance, now and always;
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart,
High King of heaven, my Treasure Thou art.

High King of heaven, my victory won,
May I reach heaven's joys, O bright heav'n's Sun
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all.

How many times do I get lost in my plans without seeking His guidance and will? How many times in a day do I experience His blessings and fail to give thanks? How many times do I jump ahead of Him only to have Him call me back? How many times have 'man's empty praise' filled my thoughts?

Oh Lord, be my vision always!

So, what better to keep the 'Vision' than to be in the Word and to pray without ceasing? The marvelous Words of Life from the Creator of heaven and earth can be found in a letter. A wonderful letter, called the Bible telling us and the world He did not spare His one and only Son, but rather sent Him as the sacrifice for you, and for me, that we might dwell with Him forever and ever and escape the fires of hell.

I talked about water early on in this post. Listen to what Jesus said here in John 4:14

"[B]ut whoever drinks the water I give will never thirst again. Indeed the water I give Him will become in Him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.

This started running through my head as I was writing this all down.

Romans 11:33-36
How the depth of the riches of His wisdom and knowledge of God!

How unsearchable His judgments and His paths beyond tracing out!

Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who as been His counselor?

Who has ever given to God that God should repay Him?

For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things.

To Him be the glory forever!


June 04, 2006

June 03, 2006

This was fun to make...
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I took about a gazzilion pics of flowers about a month ago and I used one of those pics for this creation.

The sewing part of this post will probably be found boring by most.... but I'm gonna post it anyway. :-P

But before you stop reading, please check out the information here concerning the confiscation of the million dollar bills in Texas. This is crazy and absurd!!

Also, this site is worth checking out.

OK, now you can stop reading....

I managed to clean out of the narrow closet-like space we call the 'sewing room'. The mounds of fabric are now semi-organized and I can walk through now. (Hip hip hurray!) I do need to get in there and do some color sorting, but at least for now I know where most everything is.

I picked some green fabrics and started these yesterday morning.

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I'm not happy with them but it was fun (when I wasn't frustrated with the sewing machine). :-) The idea is to practice making corners meet evenly, and learn to sew quickly and evenly with the machine. I prefer the way I can shape the pieces by hand, but I do not have time for that. Uh, yah.

We got to visit the most cool quilting shop a week or two ago. OH! They had a machine for quilting, it cost like $14,000. You place the back, filling, and top of the quilt on the frame in that order. There is a long arm on the actual sewing machine part and you swing the arm to follow the red laser on the pattern. You could even sign your name with this thing. Way cool.

June 01, 2006

While we were visiting some friends they drew our attention to a frame on the wall which held a paper on which Queen Victoria commissioned their great great grandfather (should there be one more great in there?) who was a consul to the tip of Saudi Arabia. It holds her signature and seal. I thought that was kinda neat.
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Her signature to the right of the seal at the top.

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I could certainly spend hours and hours on the web researching Tudor history. Ah! So little time. The period of kings and queens has always fascinated me. Here are some bits I picked up in my short browsing.

- Victoria's reign was the longest in British history at 64 years

- She became queen when she was 18 years old

- Together with her husband, Prince Albert, had 9 children

More links and history here, here and here.

EDIT: Oh cool! She was related to William, Prince of Orange of which the town of Orange, Massachusetts was named after. :-) I should just get off and get some work done. :-p