Monday, September 30, 2013

Jaq the Mouse

Do your children ever have a particular character from a movie that they incorporate into all their stories and imaginative play? Sometimes, in our house, Peter Pan and Lightening McQueen beat back the bad guys together. The Magic School bus has been known to transport a ring-tailed lemur (my kids love BBC Earth's Madagascar) and Buzz Lightyear on a mission. Most recently, it's been Jaq the Mouse from the Disney movie "Cinderella". Jaq might be small, but he has big adventures around here. My two older sons and daughter have been bringing him along on all their adventures, but my second son in particular has been so enamored with him he decided to make his own Jaq.

Meet Jaq the Mouse
Wait. Was that not what you were expecting? You say, "That mouse looks suspiciously like a chess pawn." Hmm, yes I would have to agree with you. But none the less, my son assures me this truly is Jaq. My second son has been showing some marked improvement in some areas he needed to work on recently. His Bible verse he has been working on memorizing lately is from Proverbs 16:32

 "He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty,
And he who rules his spirit, than he who captures a city."
And he really has been working hard on it! We've seen him share his toys, allow his little sister to have whichever cereal bowl she chooses (a big deal in our house!) and turn off a movie or stop playing with a toy with a cheerful "Yes Ma'am!" or "Yes Sir!". So when he said to me yesterday, "Mom, how cool would it be if I could have a REAL Jaq the mouse to play with!", this mom couldn't resist the opportunity to reward some positive behavior!!
Would the 'REAL' Jaq the mouse please stand up!

I made this from felt (late at night) following a picture I found online.

He was a bit "fiddly" to make, but totally worth the look on my son's face this morning!


Here's hoping he helps slay ALL those bad guys!!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Why Fir and Cypress?

 photo whyfirandcypresspin.jpg     
     We live in the Deep South. This is a transitional time for our family, I am from the Northeast and my husband is from the Midwest. Having the experience of three different areas of the country we find are a lot of stereotypes that each has about the others. Some of these stereotypes are, in some part, true (in our experience, people from the South really ARE friendlier- even at the DMV!!) and in some cases they are not (no not everyone from the North loves cold and snow, in fact its a common source of complaint amongst many!).

      So what does this have to do with the blog title? Well, many people think where we live now looks a lot like this

and that we live like this 

and this 

But actually it looks a lot more like this 


and this


 and instead of these in our front yard

We have these 

     Fir and Cypress trees do abound. But it's more than that. The blog title comes from this Bible verse in Isaiah

"For the nation or kingdom that will not serve you will perish; it will be utterly ruined. The glory of Lebanon will come to you, the juniper, the fir and the cypress together, to adorn my sanctuary; and I will glorify the place for my feet." (Is. 60:12-13)

      In our family, in our home, wherever God leads us, it is a place where God dwells. We serve Him, and He will use the fir and the cypress to adorn His sanctuary. It doesn't have to always be conventional beauty, or palms and white sand beaches. God meets us where we are. And in our case, that isn't a large gorgeous house in a framed postcard, it's a family of 6 living in a small 2 bedroom house surrounded by fir and cypress and seeking to serve God in our family, our homeschool, our words, and our actions.