Friday, August 31, 2012

Family Dinner Friday

You may...or may not...have noticed that Family Dinner Friday took a summer vacation.

So, school is back in session and it's time to get back on schedules and start eating regular dinners together as a family.

Yes, I know many of us have crazy busy schedules once school starts.  Softball, soccer, dance, volleyball, piano, cross-country, homework, etc, etc, etc.

This is why it's even more important to plan dinners together.  Make sharing dinner together as a family a priority rather than a last minute run thru a drive thru.  Making time to sit down together as a family and connect over dinner helps keep families grounded and connected.

Our 'Family Dinner Friday' family this week is the Bahr family.  The Bahr's have been attending Redding First for about 8 years.  Their family is very involved in our church (have you called the church office recently, you probably had the pleasure of talking to Carmen) as well as connected and busy with various other activities around Redding.  This is one busy family, yet they make family dinners a priority.  

the beautiful Bahr family {Mitch, Izzy, Isaac & Carmen}
photo by Solange Duarte Photography
Meet the Bahrs:

Question:  How many people are in your family and the ages of the kids?  
There are four people in our family, Isabelle is 9 and Isaac is 7.
photo by Solange Duarte Photography

Q: How many times a week do you eat dinner as a family?
Nearly every night we eat dinner as a family.

Q: Do you have picky eaters in your family?
Yes, Isaac is our pickier eater though he doesn't like to be labeled this way.  I make him try at least a little bit of everything and have stopped giving him other food options.  Meat is not his favorite thing so he often eats a lot of vegetables and fruit. 

Q:  Do you have any weekly activities that make dinner together hard?
Yes, during the school year we have Mitch's meetings at school, the kids music lessons, and sports.

Q:  Do you ever feel like NOT making dinner?
Yes, often!  If it could be made for me that would be awesome!

Q:  Have you found something that makes dinner together easier?
I try to have us work together as a team.  One child sets the table, one child clears it, Mitch and I clean up together after dinner.

Q:  What is something you think is important about eating together?
It is an opportunity for all of us to sit down together and hear about our days and how things are going.  It's a time to connect when the least amount of distractions are happening.

Q:  Do you have any major dinner time rules?
We usually have the tv off, but a "crucial" Giants game could change this fact.

Q:  Where do you grocery shop?  And who does the grocery shopping in your family?
Mainly Trader Joes and Costco.  I do nearly all of the shopping.  Mitch will occasionally stop by the store for something I need or forgot.

Q: And what is one of your favorite throw-down meals (a meal that doesn't take much time to throw together/down)?
Throw down meals that we often eat are tacos, taco salad, spaghetti with marinara sauce from a jar, breakfast burritos and other breakfast foods...
The meal that I'm sharing today is fajitas.

I've tried many versions of fajitas, especially early in our marriage.  Mitch actually prefers the fajita mix purchased in a packet in the mexican food section of the grocery store.  

All you need to do is slice a bell pepper, onion, and about a pound of chicken and follow the directions on the back of the packet.  Sauté the veggies and remove from pan, cook the chicken, add the veggies back to the pan, and add the seasoning mix and water.  

We enjoy having grated cheese and guacamole with our fajitas.  We use either a flour tortilla or lettuce leaf and add the meat, veggies, cheese, and guacamole to it.  Enjoy!

Thank you Bahr's!

Let me know if you have an easy family friendly throw-down meal and would like to be featured of Family Dinner Friday!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

PACT for the week of August 27th

Sowing and Reaping

Arrange for your family to visit and pick some vegetables from a garden. Or visit an orchard to pick fruit. (If you have one in your yard, all the better.) Or visit a local farmer's market. Bring some vegetables home and eat them for a meal.
As you are eating, talk about...
What is your favorite vegetable? Fruit?
What would happen if the farmer didn't plant any seeds? (He wouldn't harvest any food)
What should you expect to reap (harvest) if you planted corn seeds? (Corn)
What should you expect to reap if you planted bean seeds? (Beans)
Whatever we sow (plant) is what we can expect to reap (harvest).
Read Galatians 6:7-8.
If we sow (do) sin, what can we expect to reap? (Corruption, bad results, and eventually death)
If we sow well or live to please the Spirit, what can we expect to end up with? (Eternal life)
Don't be misled because God's justice will see that we reap what we sow.

    Galatians 6:7

    Items needed: 1/2 cup of dried lentils (grocery store ones are fine), water, a quart jar with a screen lid (or use a handkerchief and rubber band to drain the water)
    Grow some bean sprouts to illustrate principles of sowing and reaping.
    • Place 1/2 cup of dried lentils in the jar. Fill jar with water and soak overnight.
    • Drain and rinse the soaked beans at least once a day. (Drain them carefully after each rinse by turning them upside down on a plate or towel.) 
    As a general rule, you can eat the sprouts when the sprout tail is about as long as the seed itself, about 3 or 4 days. When the tips of the sprouts are starting to go green, transfer them to an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to a week.  (From
    For an entertaining 2-minute video of how to grow sprouts from lentils go to:
    Growing the sprouts this way is a little different from putting the seeds in
    the ground, but the same principle is at work. We had to put the lentil seeds in the water for them to grow. God's principles of sowing and reaping are still true.
    Read Galatians 6:7.
    What does "you reap what you sow" mean? (It means that you will harvest/reap/pick whatever you sow/plant)
    What should a person who goes their own way and lives a life without thinking about God expect to reap/receive at the end of his or her life? (An eternity separated from God, bad results)
    What should a person who follows God and tries to please the Holy Spirit expect to receive at the end of his or her life? (Eternal life with God in Heaven)
    God is a just God and will punish/reward us according to the way we have lived.

    Abiding in Jesus

    Items needed: wooden skewers, and pieces of fruit
    Review the Bible verse-–Galatians 5:22-23a.
    Make and eat fruit kebobs. Cut up pieces of fruit and let kids choose and add them to a wooden skewer (you might want to snap off the sharp ends).
    Why is it good to eat fruit? (It’s good for your body, it has vitamins, etc.)
    Why is it good to let the Holy Spirit produce fruit in us? (Others will see the good fruit and they may praise God, we will be happier, God is pleased when we say yes to the Holy Spirit and no to sin, etc.)
    How can we produce fruit?
    Read John 15:4-7.
    What does it mean to abide in Jesus? (To be a Christian, to read the Bible and think about His words, etc.)
    As we read the Bible and say "yes" to the Holy Spirit, we will see more and more of this GOOD fruit in our lives.
    Ask each family member to think of one way to do a good deed for someone else during the week. Then DO IT! Follow Jesus' example; He went about doing good (Acts 10:38).

    Friday, August 24, 2012

    WWSW on Wheels or Farewell Summer

    Fun was had... yup.
    The summer has ended and with the close of a great 3 months comes the much lauded and looked-forward-to Wet Wacky Science Wednesday on Wheels!

    For those not in the know, Wet Wacky Science Wednesday (heretofore mentioned as WWSW :) is our Wednesday Night activity for 1st-5th graders on campus.  We talk about a bible story or concept and then do some kind of science experiment that relates to our theme.  We've done everything from egg drop contests, to mentos and diet coke geysers... balloons blown up by carbon dioxide to mini hover crafts...

    Incidentally, if you would like, I can begin posting our lessons online for you.  If you'd like this drop me an email.

    It was sometime a few years back when we as a Children's Ministry team figured out that kids LOVE to ride their bikes but rarely have the opportunity to do so... thus, WWSW on Wheels was born!

    Below are some pics from last Wednesday (which as you can see was SUPER smoky too... <cough> <cough>)

    Wednesday, August 22, 2012

    PACT time (Parents and Children Together)

    With the new school year started, and routines beginning to regulate now is an excellent time to begin a new thing with your children.

    Many of us either drive our children to, or pick them up from school or some other extracurricular activity.  This time in the car together is a perfect time to talk with your children about the things of God.

    Ask your children what God Moments happened during their day and then share the God Moments that happend in yours too!  

    If we as parents initiate and begin to make this line of thinking a regular habit, before long your children will begin to beat you to the question!  And perhaps even more exciting, you and they will begin to LOOK for God Moments throughout your day.  God Moments happen ALL THE TIME... let's look for, acknowledge, and rejoice in them together!

    Below, you will find 3 ideas for conversation and interaction with your children throughout the week.  These ideas are based on what we have talked about as a class together on Sunday and are designed to help you continue the conversation within your family.

    Tuesday, August 21, 2012

    We now return you...


    Is it me or do summers seem to be getting shorter and shorter?  What ever happened to school starting after Labor Day?  :)

    This summer was no exception... and while I had very good intentions of keeping up my blog during the summer... I obviously didn't.

    (The best laid plans, something, something...)

    But now with school in full swing and routines regulated:

    We now return you to your regularly scheduled posting.

    On this journey with you,

    Pastor Beau