Thursday, August 26, 2010

I Want to Grow Older With You

The good Lord has given you me

And me to you

He knows just what He is doing 'cause
Even with all of our quirks

Somehow it works
Yes we are better together

I want to grow older
I want to grow older with you!

There's many things 'bout you I like

You're patient and kind

You're always careful to do what is right

Never uptight
You're out of sight

Yes we are better together

I want to grow older
I want to grow older with you!

I want to be by your side
In you confide
Let's live 'till we are one-hundred and five
If it's God's plan
Still holding hands

'Cause we're better together

I want to grow older
I want to grow older with you!

Thankful for 15 wonderful years with you Tony.
I love you and can't wait to grow older with you!
Happy Anniversary!

-cadence inspired from Expiration Date by pomplamoose

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Brownie-Peanut Butter-Ice Cream Cake

Here's what we had for Evan's birthday cake this year. He wanted something with chocolate and peanut butter, and we remembered this dessert from camp. It's super easy and super yummy!

There's not much of a recipe.

Bake a pan of your favorite brownies.
Let cool.
Spread with peanut butter.
Let it chill in the fridge for a while to harden up the peanut butter.
Spread with ice cream.
Cover and put it in the freezer.
When ready to serve, let it set out for 10 minutes, then drizzle (read: slather) with hot fudge. (I used my sister-in-law's recipe below)

Julie's Chocolate Sauce

1 c sugar
1/2 c butter
3/4 c water
1/4 c corn syrup
12 oz chocolate chips

Heat the 1st four ingredients in a saucepan on medium heat.
Stir constantly until a full boil (5-8 min.)
Boil for 3 minutes then remove from heat.
Add chocolate chips and beat with a whisk.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Happy Birthday Evan!

That went way too fast!

Here are some pictures of how we spent the day celebrating Evan's life.
We went to Lake Elmo Park Reserve, which was AMAZING!
They have a HUGE play structure!
The kids played while we got lunch ready.

Then the kids all ate in the van because the bees found our spot and they all freaked out.
Next, we headed over to the Swim Pond.
It's a large man-made pond that is filtered and slightly chlorinated.
Most of the swim area is only 3 ft deep which is perfect for our kids.
The deepest part is about 5 ft, and even out there you can see the bottom because it's filtered water.
Wish we would have found this place at the beginning of summer!
We also played in the sand.
And made a castle? or river? It kept changing.
Then we went orienteering.
The park had compasses and a map available to use on their trails.
The map showed where different posts were located and you had to find them using your map/compass reading skills.
We found it!
Then we came home and did a scavenger hunt...
An obstacle course....

A silly string fight....
A pizza party...
...and finally some birthday cake!

Happy Birthday Evan! Hope you enjoyed your day.

I can't believe we are half-way done with you!
I know you say you'll never leave us, but something will change in these next 9 years and your days wanting to live here will be gone as you mature and move on to your next phase of life.
We have so much more to teach you and you have so much more to teach us.
I'm so grateful God gave you to us, Evan. And we love you very much!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Instructions for Moms - Part 5

Here we go with Part 5 in a series on instructions for moms from truths found in the Bible.
Part 1-Be humble and recognize you can't do it on your own,
Part 2-but you can through Christ because He is sufficient.
Part 3-So seek Him with all of your heart,
Part 4-and let the word of Christ dwell in you richly

NOTE: most of the content in Part 5 on being content comes from my brother Isaac and his work in preparing for this year's theme at Camp Shetek. Thanks Ike! I appreciate what you taught me in this area!

-Part 5-

-then be content-

Listen to Paul in Philippians 4:11-13 - for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

Charles Spurgeon explains this well in his morning devotion from February 16 –

“These words show us that contentment is not a natural propensity of man. “Ill weeds grow apace.” Covetousness, discontent, and murmuring are as natural to man as thorns are to the soil. We need not sow thistles and brambles; they come up naturally enough, because they are indigenous to earth: and so, we need not teach men to complain; they complain fast enough without any education. But the precious things of the earth must be cultivated. If we would have wheat, we must plough and sow; if we want flowers, there must be the garden, and all the gardener’s care. Now, contentment is one of the flowers of heaven, and if we would have it, it must be cultivated; it will not grow in us by nature; it is the new nature alone that can produce it, and even then we must be specially careful and watchful that we maintain and cultivate the grace which God has sown in us. Paul says, “I have learned ... to be content;” as much as to say, he did not know how at one time. It cost him some pains to attain to the mystery of that great truth. No doubt he sometimes thought he had learned, and then broke down. And when at last he had attained unto it, and could say, “I have learned in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content,”

Or how about Joseph…

Joseph was hated by his siblings, beaten, thrown into a pit, sold to be a slave, thrown in prison, and yet you never read of him complaining. You read in Genesis 41:38 Pharaoh describing Joseph as this: So Pharaoh asked his officials, “Can we find anyone else like this man so obviously filled with the spirit of God?” I can’t picture Pharaoh saying that about Joseph if Joseph was a complainer, a “why me?” kind of guy. I think Joseph was content. Though he had every reason to complain and become angry at God, we read in Genesis 39:21 that Joseph knew “That the LORD was with him and extended kindness to him, and gave him favor”. When he finally was reunited with his brothers, he wasn’t revengeful.

Genesis 50:19-21 - But Joseph said to them, "Don't be afraid. Am I in the place of God? 20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. 21 So then, don't be afraid. I will provide for you and your children." And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.

He was content in each situation and trial he was in because he trusted in God’s sovereignty and plan for his life.

As a mother and the trials you face daily, do you trust God? Are you learning to be content? Do you complain? Would people describe you as content?

If you aren't content, what message are you sending to your kids? Aren't you really saying you don't trust God and what He has for your life? Do you believe He is sovereign over all things?

I think one way to help you learn to be content is to be thankful.

and that's next time...And be thankful

Thursday, August 12, 2010


Last week I celebrated my 35th birthday. 35! -HA!- I still think I'm in college!
As I read my Bible that morning, I picked a verse to work on this year. I wanted to pick a verse that would be my overall theme for year 35. Something to chew on and push hard on. The Lord brought me to Psalm 37:4.

Delight yourself in the LORD,
and he will give you the desires of
your heart.

Some things I'm hoping to understand better:

Delight....what does delight mean? How do you delight? What does does true delight look like?

in the LORD....where is my delight right now? when it's not in the LORD, what is it in?

desires of my heart....what are my desires? are they holy? do my desires match the LORD's desires?

All over the Bible it talks about delight and joy in God-

Nehemiah 8:10-And do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.

Psalm 16:11-You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy;

Hebrews 12:1-2-Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

How can I have that kind of joy? Right now my joy/delight is based on how my kids are behaving, or what kind of day I'm having, or if things are going the way I want them to go, or if my house is clean.

I pray the LORD will use this year to impress upon me truths from this verse.
He has already provided one learning tool through Tony. A few hours after I picked this verse, Tony surprised me with a book he bought for us to go through together. It is 'When I Don't Desire God-How to Fight for Joy' by John Piper.

On the back of the book it says that "if joy in God were merely the icing on the cake of Christian commitment, this book would be insignificant. But Piper argues that joy is so much more. Our being satisfied in God in necessary to show God's worthiness and to sustain sacrifices of love."

I think that's how I'm feeling right now, that my joy in God is the icing on cake that you experience once in a while, but I know it needs to be more than that. If the joy of the Lord is my strength, and I'm a wimp, then there should be a lot more joy in my daily life of mothering/parenting. I'm finding my satisfaction in unworthy objects.

I'd appreciate any insight you have. Please share with me what the LORD has taught you/is teaching you in this area.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Clean-up, clean up, everybody everywhere!

After working a double wedding, 9 hours of driving, and being down with a bad cold this is what my house looked like....
...and that's just one room of our house! To say we needed a little motivation to help us accomplish our daunting task would be an understatement. So, I did what any good Harms kid would do and made it into a game. That's our family crest motto "when all else fails-turn it into a game" !

Today's game: The Cooper Room Inspectors.

I made up some inspector sheets, each kid got to take turns being 'inspectors' and wrote down what needed to be cleaned and couldn't sign off on the sheet until it was deemed 'CLEAN'!
And now our room looks like this- It worked! And we even had some fun while doing it. I'm sure the novelty will wear off, but for now it's working, and when it doesn't we'll come up with a new game!

How do you keep chores fun?