Back to school

I realize I did not do a good job keeping you all updated.  Nonetheless, here we go! (pictures at the bottom)

With school season upon us, here’s a look back at our summer.  I did weekly activities with the youth of our church.  Some of the highlights were going to the drive-in to see Ice Age 5 (or is it 18?) and the new Star Trek.  We also took a group to Fish Fest, an all day Christian music festival in Salem.  We survived 100 degrees in the sun to watch Britt Nicole and Switchfoot.  I waited in line with the girls for over an hour for Evie to meet Britt Nicole.  She got her poster signed, and Norah got her cast signed, they were very excited.  This weekend I take our high school students to the coast for a night right before school starts.

Our lead pastor has been on vacation for the past two and a half weeks.  That means I filled in, in the pulpit.  I have enjoyed teaching through a parenting series.  I’ve learned and been reading a lot about the value of discipleship from parents in a child’s life.  The church is a support for that, not the primary means of spiritual growth for children.  If you are interested in listening to the series they are available here; the final message to be preached this coming Sunday:

For our family we just celebrated two birthdays, well, actually three!  Evangeline just turned 8 years old.  Where has the time gone?  Am I old enough to have an 8 year old?  She surprises us constantly with her passion to learn more about God and her maturity in kindness to others.  Grady turned three and is nothing short of a giant ball of energy and testosterone.  I, personally, enjoy having another male in the house, especially his passion for all things sports.  Lynsey’s birthday is next week, she is still in the decade behind me, how did this happen?  Our third birthday, was the birth of our second son, Lincoln Ellery.  If you don’t know, he was born July 17.  He is growing, a lot, he was back on birth weight three days after he was born.  It usually takes  two weeks.  He is well loved by his siblings!

Some other highlights from the summer:  In case you didn’t already catch it, Norah broke her arm about 4 weeks ago.  She gets her cast off on mom’s birthday!  She has been very brave and tough about it, she got to pick out purple for her cast.  It is the first broken bone in our family, including Lynsey and I, so a new experience all around.  My parents visited for a few days this summer, and Lynseys mom and sister were here for a while to help care for baby and new momma.  My brother, who works with New Tribes in Papua New Guinea, also visited.  We hadn’t seen their family in five years, it was great to re-connect.

Upcoming for us, Evie will start school next week.  She is going into third grade, and will be attending public school for the first time in her life.  She is nervous and very excited.  I know she will have lots of fun!  Norah will be starting kindergarten with mom at home.  Grady will just keep playing.  Tough job.  We will be involved in AWANA at our church this school year, as well as leading youth group, and anywhere else I can fill in.  Lynsey and I will be traveling to Louisville in three weeks for a ministry conference.  My mom is coming to watch the children.  We are excited for some time together and to learn more about family ministry.  Finally, we are still looking to move into Brownsville; we currently live about 20 minutes from church.  In about a month we are hoping to put an offer on a house, it would be our first house we would ever own! It would also be the 8th house in our 9 year marriage, so hopefully we can stay in this one for awhile.

Our transition has been fairly smooth, despite its challenges.  We are enjoying warm weather and being able to play outside for more than a few months a year.  The kids have had lots of time to swim at the pool.  They are making new friends, and have many, many new grandmas.  Our church is wonderful.  They are nothing short of a very loving, generous congregation.  They have helped make the transition easier and have been very welcoming to our family.  We are thankful to be a part a church that loves each other, loves its children, and is passionate about Jesus!

* Healthy delivery of our baby boy, and a good recovery for mom.
* Visits from many family members.
* Kindness people have showed in helping us transition (one friend built us awesome benches for our kitchen table).
* A great Senior Pastor and leadership team to work with!

Prayer Requests:
* Finding a house that is the right size and right price.
* School starting, especially for Evie and opportunities to share Jesus in a public school.
* Our school year youth group.  That teens would be challenged to live out their faith.
* Lynsey – with some ongoing health needs.
* Continuing relationships built and learning about our new church family.

Enjoy some pictures! (It’s a slideshow)


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