Saturday, July 30, 2011

Thank you!

Our Family has been blessed with amazing support. We have Families that step in to watch our three boys when things get busy, or grab them to go swimming, or just bring us ice cream for a bed time snack. We are so grateful.

I'm sure there are things that we should be thankful for that we don't even know about. Like friends who make sure our kids stay corralled at church, stop little toys from rolling under the church benches in the nick of time, or graciously fail to mention if they are missing a dish from their kitchen from bringing us a meal (this one bothers me), and not doubt other things.

My parents used to make me write thank you notes to those who accompanied me when I sang at an event, or to the person who bought my 4H hog. I remember thinking seriously, if I spend my time writing a thank you note to every person that's helped me, I'll never catch up. And then the writing it, "Thank you for buying my 4H hog, it helped me pay my bills." How do you know what to say?

I spend a lot of my time thinking up creative ways to say thank you. It is quite humbling, to have to say thank you to people. It's difficult to be arrogant when people are helping you out all the time.

One way that I've thought of saying thank you is by offering to take family photos for those that help us out by taking care of our children. I love the way that through photography I can highlight beautiful things, or people that I care about, things that at first glance seem ordinary, but are really quite extraordinary. And I don't have to try to figure out how to write that out. Although I guess i just did, just in a blog, and not a thank you note.

It's funny, I used to thank people for buying my 4H hog, and now this week I have to write one to somebody who gave me a hog. A whole hog. It is in my deep freeze.

And to those who have been supportive, but I missed, Thank You!

To see the Thank You pictures, click the photos below.

Click to play this Smilebox collage
Create your own collage - Powered by Smilebox
Personalize your own free collage

Click to play this Smilebox collage
Create your own collage - Powered by Smilebox
Customize your own free collage

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Livin' Wide Eyed in Wonder and Belief

Luke 11 (The Message)

Your eye is a lamp, lighting up your whole body. 
If you live wide-eyed in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. 

If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar. 

Keep your eyes open, your lamp burning, so you don't get musty and murky. 
Keep your life as well-lighted as your best-lighted room.

Scripture speaks into our live in situations that we would least expect it.  When taking pictures of family at our Veldhouse Christmas in July at the Cabin, I took this picture of Addie's eyes, and this passage came to mind.

I read through Luke last fall out of The Message, and this passage caught my attention then, I didn't consider what it would look like to catch the idea of that Scripture passage in a photograph until this weekend.

Your eye is a lamp, lighting up your whole body.

If you live wide-eyed in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light.

If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar.
Keep your eyes open, your lamp burning, so you don't get musty and murky.

Keep your life as well-lighted as your best-lighted room.

Addie caught her first fish at the cabin Saturday, and then her uncle Brian filleted it, and her daddy cooked it for her.  It was a yummy fish.  Children can teach us a lot about living life wide eyed.

And a little about fishing too.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

"Let's go racin', boys! BOOGITY, BOOGITY, BOOGITY! Gearshift them things!"

The infamous phrase--derived from the sounds made by horses galloping--that starts races and sells t-shirts. Translates into: "Hang on! Here we go!" (Darrell Waltrip, 2/2/03, The Cincinnati Enquirer)

(You also may recognize the phrase from Disney's movie, CARS.)

Wednesday night of the Southern Iowa fair I went with my dad to watch my younger brother Kurt race at the Southern Iowa Speedway in Oskaloosa, IA. It was a big racing night, with the USMTS in town.

I have a lot of memories at this dirt track.  In the fourth grade I sang and played "Great Balls of Fire" in front of this grandstand for the Bill Riley Talent show, of which I have a video, that may or may not make an appearance someday.  I've watched some country music concerts here during fair week, though never legally.  There used to be a spot in the fence on the west side of the track you could peak through.  I also have memories of being a lot younger and falling asleep towards the end of the racing night, or trying to fall asleep accept for the nosiest cars always race last, which was when I was the sleepiest.  I also sang the national anthem the summer of 2003 before a race, which was the same night I met my husband Brian playing church league softball with my brothers, but that is a story for another time.  In other words, I feel pretty at home in this crowd. 

And so do these guys.  Kurt gets on the racing suit, an attempt at safety in case of fire in the car.

Adjusting the base of the car one last time.  Since this was the first night they've raced this summer, their adjustments seemed to be a shot in the dark. But I'm just the sister taking the pictures, and I really don't know a whole lot about mechanics of a race car.

It was hot last week.  The slip n slide we had the afternoon before sounded REALLY good.

 My nephew Cody's sweet shirt that he made.

Spectators in the track pit can see the whole track if they stand on their trailers.  A haze of dust covers the pit all night.  So it is hot and dusty.  Good racing weather.

Kurt being interviewed be fore he draws a number for a racing spot.  This interviewer could definitely enter the mullet contest at the Iowa State Fair.  That is meant to be a complement.

Back to the car.  His twin brother Karl is on the left of the photo.  Older brother BJ in green, and his friend Mitchel on the right, who was a really good helper.  He had a good pit crew. They were cheap.

Pulling out of the pits to line up.  I didn't know at the time, but the ambulance in the background would enter into this event soon...

We stood on the east side of the track, and because we couldn't see the who thing, we'd watch for the orange car to pass each round.  Then he didn't show up... and the cars were making their rounds with no orange 21 car driving, then the drivers got a yellow light, and I got a little nervous.

Then found this scene in the pit.  No serious injuries, but serious enough...

Here is the inside of the drivers seat.  You can see the steering wheel "column" on the top left of the photo.  (The steering wheel gets put on after the driver is in the car.)  There is a tear in the steel on the right of the seat, underneath the shifter.

The drive shaft came loose and hit him in the arm and the leg.  the joint that came out is actually not on the picture, but off of the left side.  A drive shaft is supposed to be straight.  He still placed 14 out of 24, and made some money, so he did good.

Then it was time for the noisy cars, the A modifieds.  Pull out the earplugs.

It was nice to be back at the Southern Iowa Speedway, taking pictures without little boys to worry about for a few hours. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Southern Missour Vacation, Final Post

The last full day of our vacation I wanted to capture portraits of each of my kids and nieces and nephews for the farm shop.  I didn't have them pose, I just shot while they were playing and asked them to shoot me a smile.

My youngest, a little honey bee.

Can't believe Elijah posed on his three wheeler like this when I asked him to look at me and smile.

These butterflies could be seen every day.  We took pictures of this one right before leaving.

And a family photo before leaving.  I set the camera on a tripod and set the timer on 10 seconds.  Can you believe this was the first and only shot, and it turned out?!

And now, back to the rhythms of life in Iowa.  Can't wait till next time!  Maybe back to Colorado...where it gets 50 degrees on summer nights. :)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Southern Missouri Vacation, Part 3

It is a hot, hot day across the midwest.  I'm finishing up some preparation for an open house tomorrow here at the parsonage, and looking at vacation photos of swimming makes me want to go back.  And so does this food...

Cooking in cast iron works so well.  I use cast iron at home for most of my cooking, except frying eggs.  Then I use a non-stick skillet.

Uncle Mike holding Zachary, helping me out so I can take some photos.

Dumping out the water so that the bike can restart.  This happened a few times, but amazingly they restarted every time.

My nephew Elijah played so nicely by the water.  It isn't really sand like Michigan sand (the best there is), it is more like Rock Sand, but it still scooped well for little boys.

My nephew Anton grinning at me.  Likely about his daddy restarting the motorcycle.

The water looks so nice today, doesn't it?  The bigger kids took off their life jackets some, since they have had swimming lessons. 

Ezra mimics his daddy by throwing a rock in the water.  These brain-looking rocks could be found along the bottom of the river.  They also look a lot like morel mushrooms.

And a few more water and ATV pictures.  I was really thankful to have purchase a pelican case which is waterproof, for my camera.  It is hard to fully protect gear in this much water activity, but it did the trick. 

My nephew Cody and Brother Mike poppin' a wheely across the bridge.  After vacation, Ezra and Elliot are now always poppin' wheeleys on their ride on toys.

Now, I think it is about time to go swimming again!