Friday, April 26, 2013

What is a flipper flapper?

Jane is.
She is not just an ordinary flipper flapper, she's a skilled flipper flapper.  If you think it has anything to do with the making of pancakes, sorry to disappoint you.  I am pretty sure a flipper flapper is a six-year-old that finds joy in arranging numbers. 

Jane calls sudoku "flip"  due to this book.  Flip is her new favorite pastime.
Fritz and Jane helping me with puzzle #205. It wasn't as hard as #160 which was on the board for a couple days.
Solved! Jane added "w"s for winner

Friday, April 19, 2013

The flowers cry out

  Luke 19 indicates dead rocks can talk, so why aren't we listening to flowers?   

38 “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!”

“Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”

39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!”
40 “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”

 Our purposeful Creator filled creation with pictures of his redemptive plan.  How personal God is that he writes us love letters in the flowers in our trees.  There is a story there that will make the hardhearted weep and the wretched whole.  A white blossom pierced and smeared with blood immortalizes the sufferings of Christ, but it appears only around Easter. Coincidence? I think not.  How God pursues us as he gives us eye-catching flowers year after year to make us mindful of his completed work.   We are courted by the Creator.  We are truly a people without excuse.

So I love this legend...
At the time of the crucifixion, the dogwood had reached the size of the mighty oak tree. So strong and firm was the wood that it was chosen as the timber for Jesus' cross.
To be used for such a cruel purpose greatly distressed the dogwood. While nailed upon it, Jesus sensed this, and in his compassion said. "Because of your pity for my suffering, never again shall the dogwood tree grow large enough to be used for a cross. Henceforth, it shall be slender, bent, and twisted, and its blossoms shall be in the form of a cross–two long and two short petals.
"In the center of the outer edge of each petal will be the print of nails. In the center of the flower, stained with blood, will be a crown of thorns so that all who see it will remember."

from "Sower's Seeds Aplenty: Fourth Planting," # 29, p. 22

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Land of mixed-up stories

Foxy Loxy and the jail wagon.  Envision who you will in it.

Explode on impact and sparkle down.  Glinda, the good fairy of the North.

Prince Caspian sailing the Dawn Treader.
 Bilbo Baggins in the castle of Helms Deep.

Mirkwood River in the background.

The girl from the Seven Sneezes before the trouble began.
Stages were meant for dancing after you built your house of sticks.

 Little Red Riding Hood sure is looking good.

My tall lady attempting to be Cameleon, the spy, and blend into the wall.

Curious George in the dinosaur skeleton at the Natural History Museum.

Monday, April 08, 2013

April Picks

This was a surprising documentary about individual farmers across China's map.  I think the title "Every Seventh Person" piqued my interest.  Did you know that every seventh person in the world is a Chinese farmer?  I was touched that one of the aged farmers was elated that the days were gone when they use to cook their food in their chamber pots.  You have to understand he said this while he sat in a ramshackle shanty with the crudest of furniture and devoid of luxuries.  Puts a little perspective on life.  There were many radiant faces and many farmers expressed dreams that their children would gain education and would have the privilege to not work the land. 
Another fascinating glimpse into the new China through the eyes of 9 young people with varying education and ambitions.  If you liked the British Up Series, this is an abbreviated Asian version.  Life, love and character are explored.  Businesses are started, relationships end and new ones begin.  Real life is full of hard decisions for these nine. This documentary was candidly filmed, and still somewhat stoic to life's upheavals and heartaches.  From my protected living room where I find it hard to imagine my mother being kidnapped by human traffickers or my husband to be living alone in a far continent for three years due to economics, the individual story lines were gripping and often bittersweet.  
Though not a film, this thin book was just as captivating.  After the first chapter or so, this was a tremendous read.  Full of earthly nonsense, it was packed with calm, mountain moving power.  The Lord is doing a mighty work in the Middle East.  The dead are raised to life, the infirm are healed, and the Muslim clerics are seeing visions telling them about Jesus.  I love that God's ways are so unusual and how he uses a man stricken with a terrible disease to love the unlovely... enemies of Christ.  There is no doubt that the vicar's heart bleeds and beats with great joy in shepherding the faithful and persecuted body of Christ. 
This book was a stark contrast to the Chinese farmers' acceptance of a hard life.  The author becomes a little girl again and relives her harsh childhood which was surrounded by luxury yet impoverished in the things that matter most.  Her emotional scars are still fresh and vivid.  She writes full of pain and still some unforgiveness.  Her perspective is not redeemed by the healing power of Christ.  It was an interesting look into China before the Japanese occupation and growing up in troubled times. 

Tuesday, April 02, 2013