Friday, March 24, 2017

Spring Break Fun

On our third day of spring break the four of us took a glass blowing class. We each made a witch's ball, which is a glass orb with glass strands inside. It was just the four of us, which was very nice. The instructor was very patient and let us do as much of the work as possible. Each of our orbs turned out a little different, which I like. You can't see the correct hue of the color when the glass is still super heated, so I'm looking forward to seeing how they all turned out. We had to leave them there to cool slowly for several days.

Some of the color choices.

Rolling the glass in the color pellets. Ron picked transparent blue.

Trying to get some color on the bottom of the glass. Tyler picked red and gray.

Shaping the glass

She could tell he played an instrument. He was a natural at blowing the glass.

She knocked the orb off the pole and then added another glob of glass to make a hook.

Danielle picked orange & white.

We used these big tweezers to poke glass into 3 sides and the bottom to create the web in the orb.

I used transparent green. You could see the web really well in mine.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017


Our second day of spring break also happened to be Tyler's half birthday. I took him to apply for his learner's permit today, and he passed the written exam.

Getting a license today is different than when I got mine. We had drivers' ed in school, which also meant it was free. It's no longer a school course. I'm still trying to decide on a driving school. So far they've ranged in price from $270-$360 for the 24 hour classroom work and 8 hours of in-car driving instruction. (Before he can get his license, he also has to complete 50 hours of driving with us.) The plan is to start the classes toward the end of April so he can have a few weeks of learning the basics with us first. He'll probably work on his in-car driving once he gets back from his dive trip in July - it usually takes several weeks to be able to schedule time anyway. He should finish everything in August and, if everything goes as planned, can take his test in September if he feels ready. I've heard people complain about how expensive it is to insure teenage drivers. They weren't kidding. Even with the "good student discount", our insurance premiums will double. And my worries probably will, too. Shouldn't he still be this age?!!

In honor of his half birthday, we also had cake. I didn't have enough candles to do 15.5, but we did stick with half the birthday song. I caught him mid bite.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Spring Break

Today is the first day of spring break. Let me just start by saying we all wish we were in Key Largo again. We have a few things planned for this week, but none of them involve searching for starfish in the tidepools, fishing from the dock, or kayaking in search of manatee.

Danielle started off her spring break with a crack-of-dawn track practice. I don't know if it's to test their commitment or what, but the track coach has decided to have practices every day this week from 7-8:30am. It's dark. It's cold. And it's early. I'm not a fan.

Doesn't look like she minded too much, though, does it? We'll see how she feels by Friday.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

God Answers

There were lots of prayers that were prayed on behalf of Danielle's friend, Lexus this week. A live video requesting prayer for Lexus was made by a pastor friend of the family and posted on FB the evening before her surgery. It was viewed over 68k times and shared over 800 times! So many strangers all praying for the same thing. Locally there were friends and family who knew her well and were also praying for the same thing. I think that's pretty amazing.

Whether it was the prayers of 68k people or 1 person, God heard and answered the way we were hoping. She was in surgery over 8 hours on Tuesday, and they were able to remove all of the mass.
They only had to shave a very small section of her hair at the base of her neck. She is able to speak. She doesn't appear to have lost any of her memory. She's weak but able to walk. And, best of all, they received news the other day that the mass was not cancerous!

Danielle and two of her friends went to visit her in the hospital today. They had a good visit. Her parents said this was the most they had seen her smile since the surgery.

Thank you all for joining us in praying for Lexus. Please continue to remember her as she tries to heal and gain strength. When Danielle talked to Lexus in the past about God, she wasn't sure she believed. I hope she is able to look back and see how God took care of her through this.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Prayer Request

If you are taking the time to read this tonight, please take a minute to pray for Danielle's friend Lexus. Lexus has been Danielle's friend for a couple years. She just turned 13, just started running track with Danielle and their other friends, and just found out this weekend that she has a brain tumor.

Danielle and her best friend Maggie went to visit Lexus in the hospital tonight. She is scheduled for surgery tomorrow. She will probably have her long blond hair shaved, which matters when you're 13. They told her she won't be able to talk for a few days after the surgery and will have to have therapy to learn to talk and walk again. She may have long term memory loss. And she may have cancer. They will find out after they run tests on the removed tumor.

4 days ago her biggest problems were homework and typical girl drama.

Please pray for Lexus & her parents, who looked so worn out. Please pray for her doctors. Please pray for Danielle. And then go hug your kids. I tend to forget they are just on loan to us.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Buying in Bulk

We bought a Costco membership the other day and stopped in to look around. I was trying out the lawn furniture (= I was tired of walking around) so the kids and Ron went their own ways. This was my text conversation with Danielle. I think next time we'll leave the kids at home.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Light It Up

Our power was off for a little while yesterday. There is an intersection a few miles south of us that is prime for accidents. We are on the same grid as the power lines that line the country road over there, and the poles seem to be car magnets. I think we've been without power because of an accident 3 times in the past 4 weeks. Usually the power is off for several hours when it goes off. The longest span in the recent weeks was about 9 hours. The houses immediately behind ours are on a different grid, so we can see the warm glow of their lights while we are shivering in the darkness. Yesterday it was out twice for the same accident, but thankfully it wasn't out for long either time. I usually enjoy pulling out the big candles we keep under the kitchen sink for times like these, but last night Tyler lit up the room for us with last year's Disney souvenir.

(He had intended to take the purple light sabre part off and use it as a flashlight, but I liked the purple better.)