Friday, June 22, 2012

Family Dinner Friday

It's Family Dinner Friday time...

Today we are meeting the Rush family.

photo by Betsey Walton Photography

Robert and Rayna are active in the Family Ministry at our church, Redding First.

Robert is a leader with the 1st-5th grade kids on Wednesday nights, and helps about once a month on Sunday mornings.  He was also the group leader for the 5th grade kids last year during our VBS program.

Rayna has served on the MOPS steering team at our church for the past 3 years, volunteers in our church nursery &/or Sunday School classrooms once a month (that was until their most recent baby boy was born 7 weeks ago!).  She also served as our VBS coordinator last year, 2011, and is helping with this years new
VBS program.
sweet baby Carter at 5 days by Betsey Walton Photography
Question:  How many people are in your family and the ages of the kids?  
     There are 4 people in our family, us and our two boys, Lincoln age 4 1/2 and Carter 7 weeks

Q: How many times a week do you eat dinner as a family?
     Almost every night. It is rare that we don't eat as a family, even if that means taking shifts to eat while one of us is holding Carter.

Q: Do you have picky eaters in your family?
      No, we have always made food a non-issue, so Lincoln tries everything (within reason) at least 3 time and then if he doesn't like it then he doesn't have to eat it. We haven't found much food that he doesn't like even if it means fibbing a bit and telling him shrimp on his plate is just chicken.

Q:  Do you have any weekly activities that make dinner together hard?
     No, but I am sure that day is coming. 

Q:  Do you ever feel like NOT making dinner?
     Haha, YES I feel like this almost every night, well maybe not the making of the dinner, but the deciding what to have is the hard part for me. 

Q:  What is something you think is important about eating together?
     That if we make dinner together a priority now then when life gets really crazy with activities and school and friends family dinner will just be the norm for our family and will also help us stay connected with our boys.

Q:  Do you have any major dinner time rules?
     No electronics at the table and unless its an emergency we don't answer the phone. We have an answering machine and we can call people back. 

Q:  Where do you grocery shop?  And who does the grocery shopping in your family?
     We shop at Winco (have to contribute to our retirement) and I do most of the shopping, but since Robert works there, there are times that he brings food home.

Q:  It's summer time right now, do you change your menu/cooking habits based on the seasons?
        I would say we do more grilling and less baking. The less we can turn on the oven during the summer the better. 

Q: And what is one of your favorite throw-down meals (a meal that doesn't take much time to throw together/down)?
       I have a few, apple chicken salad (one of Roberts favorites), beef stroganoff, and taco salad. 

The meal/recipe that the Rush family is sharing with us today is actually one that our family shared with them earlier this week.

Grilled Pizza
*pre made dough of your choice (we used thin crust Boboli for the adults and then full pita bread rounds for the kids)
*sauce of your choice (kids had a red sauce and adults had a pre-made white sauce from WinCo deli)
*Grated Cheese of your choice (we used mozzarella)
*Toppings of your choice, we used the following
     'adult pizza': grilled chopped chicken, fresh spinach, sun dried tomatoes in oil & drained and chopped, canned artichoke hearts drained and chopped, and sliced mozzarella cheese to top
     'kids personal pizzas': cheese...that's all they wanted...

pre grill
Preheat your grill.
Cover your 'dough' with sauce, cheese & other toppings
For the 'adult' pizza we turned the grill to low, placed the pizza on and closed it up for about 5-7 minutes until the cheese was melted.
The 'kids' pizzas got a little over-grilled this way, so round 2 for them we turned the grill off and placed the pizzas onto the still hot grill, closed it up and about 5 minutes later the cheese was melted to perfection.

all pizza's on the grill
the 'adult' pizza, so very yummy!
Thanks Rayna for sharing your family's dinner time with us.  And thanks for the yummy easier summer meal!

On this journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The one that rubs...

My wife has written a very thought provoking post over on her blog...

Go check it out!

On this journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Sunday, June 17, 2012

To the dads doing it right...

Happy Father's Day
as a special Father's Day treat my wife, Kiera, wrote a special post for all those dad's doing it right...


Church is what WE do...
my husband is a pastor and I am the Early Childhood Director at the same church....
there are certain things we know about church attendance...
there are patterns and weeks that we know we will have more in attendance and weeks that there will be less...
and then we have the weeks that we have no idea why we had a ton of kids or why the classrooms were empty...

but there are 3 Sunday's that we know what to expect...
*Easter is by far the biggest Sunday ever...
*Mother's Day is usually the second busiest Sunday...
and then ...
*Father's Day Sunday the classrooms/pews are empty

early this week, on a Christian radio station, I heard a DJ talking about Father's Day at church...
He was talking about how at church on Mother's Day Sunday you hear things like'
Mom's are amazing
We couldn't do this without them
We are so grateful for all our mothers
yada yada yada...
and then on Father's Day you hear things like:
Dad's you need to step it up
we have a generation of kids without dads
our perception of God is tarnished because of all the bad dads in the world....

I was totally thinking about this today
about dads bringing...or not bringing...their kids to church on Father's day
while I walked around church doing my job,
in-and-out of classrooms seeing families and dads around campus.

Well guess what...
somethings never change...we had low numbers in the childcare was slow...

but guess what else...
I saw dads today...
I saw lots of dads bringing their kids to church...
dad's who are amazing men of God that decided today...on the day our country has chosen to celebrate their roles as father's....they were going to bring their children and families to church!

So today I want to say, GO TEAM DAD....
it makes my heart soar to see the father's doing it right...
today I saw

  • a young, 20 something, single dad of a 3 year old boy bring his son to church
  • a first time dad volunteering at our check-in station
  • another dad working with his wife as the toddler Sunday School teacher (with only 3 toddlers and 3 other adults that dad could very easy have said, "you know what, it's my day, I'm going to church, or out for coffee, you ladies look like you have it covered"...but no he stayed in the toddler room and taught those 2 yr old's that a Father is a man who will always teach them about God, no matter how young they are)
  • a father that has been dealing with horrible medical issue with his wife and has faithfully been bringing his two sons to church over the past 2 months all on his he was able to bring his wife to church...and rather than say, I need a day off...I deserve a day of just me (which he does!)...he brought his wife and sons to church
  • a grandfather battling cancer was there preparing the morning coffee
  • father's leading worship
  • a dad coming for his 2nd or 3rd time with his 5 year old daughter (today his wife was not with him, not sure if she was sick or why she didn't come), but this father brought his daughter by himself to church on Father's Day
  • a man, that brings children that live in his trailer park to church, stepping up and being the father/grandfather that they don't have
  • a teen father in church with his son
  • And many other Godly fathers

I sat in church and looked around the room, but this year I didn't see the empty chairs...I looked around at all the fathers...the men of God that are raising up this next generation.  I saw those fathers worshiping their heavenly father, opening up their Bibles and soaking up God's word...
I saw father's doing it right...
Father's that need to hear a big thank you!
as a wife to one of these amazing Godly father's I would like to stand up and say something that has been a long time in coming...
*Dad's you are amazing
*We can't do this without you (I really couldn't...)!
*We are so grateful for all our Godly father's...
*thanks for being the example!  Thanks for giving us a healthy perception of what our Heavenly Father's Love looks like!
Thanks for living out Deuteronomy 6!....
"The Lord our God, the Lord is one.  Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.  Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates."  Deuteronomy 6:4-9

On this journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Swim Test...

Guest Blogger!

Head on over to my wife's blog and read her latest post RE the now infamous 'Swim Test' our son recently encountered... and her thoughtful response that we should all ask ourselves.

The Swim Test

On this journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

SPLINK week of June 10th

June 10-16
The Good News
Bearer of Good News

Items Needed: five slips of paper
Bag or jar to put them in
Think of five ideas of "good news" your kids would like to hear (stay up 30 minutes past bedtime, eat an extra dessert, play a game with the whole family at 7 p.m., choose the dinner menu, find and eat bag of candy hidden in the pantry, etc.) and write each one on a slip of paper. Put them in a bag or jar.
Each morning at breakfast choose (with a lot of fanfare) one person to be the bearer of good news. Invite him to choose a slip of paper from the jar and read it to the family. Don't forget to follow through on doing the good news.
How did it feel to choose and tell the good news?
In this week's Bible story, Paul told the people in Antioch the GOOD NEWS about Jesus.
What is the GOOD NEWS about Jesus? (We can have forgiveness of sin because Jesus died and rose from the dead.)
Everyone who believes in Him can have a friendship with God. This is GOOD NEWS! Paul and Barnabas were glad to share the GOOD NEWS with the people.

Spreading the Good News
Items Needed: copy paper or preferably, card stock
Type some messages—some GOOD NEWS on the computer. Print these out on cardstock (or paper) and cut them apart. (If you make them business card size, they will be easier to carry around.)
Some ideas:
  • Remember . . . God loves YOU!
  • Jesus died so you can live!
  • You are IMPORTANT to God . . . He sent His Son to die for you!
  • Nothing can separate you from God's love.
  • Have a good day! God loves you!
  • Call out to God; He wants to hear from you.
  • Never forget—God is FOR you!
Brainstorm the names of people you can share some good news with—mail carrier, grocery store clerk, neighbor, friend, homeless person, garbage collector, etc. Make a plan for each family member to give away a card today, and a smile to go with it.

Happy Father's Day!
Make your plans this week to honor Dads (Granddads, uncles or surrogate fathers). Brainstorm ideas with the kids about making a video card for Dad. 
Film the kids completing some of these sentence starters:

  • My dad is really great at ______.
  • I wish I could tell my dad that _________.
  • No one is better than my dad at _______.
  • I love my dad because ________.
  • My dad makes me laugh when he __________.
  • My dad is special because ____________.
End with I love you!
On this journey with you,

Pastor Beau

Monday, June 11, 2012

And there they go...

So yesterday I said goodbye to a group of kids who I have known since they were three.

I think this graduating class of 5th (I mean 6th graders) has been the hardest for me to send on to the 'big kid' youth group...

Maybe part of my difficulty is the fact that one of these kids is my own daughter.

That might have some bearing on it.

But of this I can be sure, all of these kids LOVE Jesus and want to live for him... and in that I can be confident that they will continue to grow in Christ.

I can't wait to watch them soar as they live into the lives that God has planned for them even before time began!

As much as I love each and everyone of you, Jesus loves you even more... and He will NEVER stop loving you!

Pastor Beau

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

SPLINK for the week of June 3

June 3-9
Holy Spirit
Completing the Task
Item Needed: cell phone
Instructions for a scavenger hunt
Write out tasks for a simple scavenger hunt.
  • Go to the gas station and find out the price of gas.
  • Go to the store, buy a candy bar, and give it to the clerk.
  • Stop at the park and run around the swing set.
  • Go to a neighbor's house and tell them how nice their yard looks.
  • Sing a song while sitting in the closet.
  • End with: Go the ice cream store/McDonald's and enjoy a cone.
Arrange for someone (a neighbor or friend) to call on your cell phone and read you the next task to complete. (Estimate about how much time each task will take so they will know when to call. You may have to wait a few minutes for the next task, but that's okay.)
Gather the family together and wait for the first call to tell you what to do. Complete each task and end up at a fun place—the ice cream store.
Talk about it:
What did you like about this?
What did we need to do to complete each task? (Wait until we were told what to do, wait and listen for the instructions, etc.)
What would have happened if we chose NOT to listen to the instructions? (We wouldn't be able to complete all the tasks, we would have missed out on the treat at the ice cream store, etc.)
God gives us the Holy Spirit to live inside us and guide us.
What can we do to find out His instructions? (Read the Bible, wait until we know what is right and do it, listen and obey when He speaks to us, etc.)
The early church followed the Holy Spirit's instructions and chose Paul and Barnabas to do a special work for God. The Holy Spirit was at work in the church calling men to tell others the truth about Jesus and to help people believe.
Fear Not!
Items Needed: pieces of copy paper
Masking or duct tape
Students are learning Isaiah 41:10. Assign kids to write each of the different phrases (Fear not, I am with you, etc.) of the verse on a separate piece of paper. (If you have lots of time, let them decorate their page.) Stick each one to a different tree or spot in the back yard.
Say the verse together a couple of times to review it. Then time the kids as they run from the first phrase to the second phrase to the third phrase to
. . . etc. They must say the phrase aloud at each stop. If you have younger children, you may want to number them. Run the course several times to help them learn the verse.
Why don't we need to be afraid? (God is with us, the Holy Spirit guides and helps us, He will give us strength to do what is right, etc.)
How can remembering this verse help us? (It can give us confidence to face anything that comes our way, it can give us courage, and it can help us do what we need to do)
We need to remember that God is always with us and will help us.
Getting the Message
Just as the early church and Paul and Barnabas listened to the Holy Spirit, we also need to listen to Him.
Act out a situation. Person A is trying to tell Person B an important message. Person B is listening to loud music or watching TV or is distracted with a video game.
Do you think Person B got the message?(Probably not)
What does Person B need to do? (Be quiet, focus on Person A's message, pay attention to the message not the other things, etc.)
Pick a time every day this week and listen to the Holy Spirit. (He is the author of the Bible, which is the main way He speaks to us.)
Choose a quiet spot.
Turn off electronic gadgets. (Parents too)
Read what He has said to you in the Bible.
DO what He says.
He wants to guide us, but we must be quiet and listen.

On this journey with you,

Pastor Beau