Monday, June 29, 2009

Photo of the Week ~

A Surprise Lilly (I think?) I didn't do any editing, all of the colors are original. I was very please at how it came out. I took it this morning, after a good shower. The effect with the rain drops on it is very neat!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Blog Contest

Miss Kelly and Miss Andrea Reins are putting on a "Guess Who?" blog contest! Put in your guesses and there will be a prize! :-)

Happy guessing,

Photography ~

Here are some neat photos I've taken lately:

The shutters
A boquet

The Wahlquist visit on Tuesday

On Tuesday morning, we had all of the Wahlquist family over, except for Mr. Wahlquist. We really enjoyed the vist (as always!!). :-) They were here for about three hrs.
Here are some pictures:

Abby snapped this photo of Miss Elisha and Miss Elizabeth

L-R: Stephen, Jaden, and Deborah

Playin' legos and chattin'

L-R: Bejamin W., Elisha W., Elizabeth W., Nathaniel W., Andrew W., Stephen W. (in the background), Mrs. W., and Mom.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Visit to Denton

Last Sunday we went over to Denton, where our Uncle, Aunt & cousins live. We went over to see Rachel (one of our cousins) perform in a end-of-the-season concert for the choir she is in. The concert lasted about 1 1/2 hours. We got to Denton a few minutes before, so we visited with them. On our way over to the church, Abby & I went with Jason (one of our cousins) and his girlfriend over to a Thai restaurant and got some bubble tea. It was yummy! I got a chocolate-coconut milk flavor, which was very rich. After the concert we went over to our Uncle & Aunt's house, and visited until 10:30pm!

The choir performing a song about the cross

The ending of a song

The whole choir, some 65 young people

Rachel is the one with the arrow pointing at her

Abby & Aunt Becky cooking in the kitchen

Abby's new blog

Abby just got a new photo blog yesterday! Check it out. I love her background. ;-)


Cap & Trade: The Hidden Tax

The time to take action is NOW! Congress is set to vote on this bill Friday/tomorrow (6-26-2009).

The House of Representatives is slated to vote on the Cap and Trade bill this Friday (6-26-2009) according to the Washington Post.

The House Rules Committee unveiled the latest version of the bill, which weighs in at 1,201 pages. It features new items such as $7.5 billion in "green bonds" for a new federal financing agency called the Clean Energy Deployment Administration, extra emission allowances for politically powerful rural electric cooperatives, greater flexibility for states that want to use free allowances for mass transit, and tweaks benefiting a range of companies, including algae-based biofuel producers and major petroleum refiners. (emphasis added)

This piece of legislation seems to be a top priority of the Obama administration - but will it help or hurt our flailing economy? How much would this hidden tax cost the average American household?

The New York Times and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) have helpful information regarding the cost of such a bill.

Campaign for Liberty provides a break down of the facts:
You see, energy companies just pass the costs of these draconian regulations through to the consumer in the form of huge price increases.

As a result, you will pay higher gas prices, higher electric prices, and higher costs for goods.
Barack Obama has estimated the costs of this legislation to American taxpayers to be over 650 BILLION dollars over the next eight years, and that figure is no doubt just a fraction of the real cost.

But even that modest estimate amounts to hundreds of dollars a year in increased living expenses for every family -- and will more likely cost thousands a year.

And according to the Heritage Foundation, between 1.2 and 2.3 million jobs could be lost over the next ten-years due to the bill's stifling regulations.

This current economic crisis is no time for Congress to consider both raising prices on hard-working Americans AND costing them jobs.

That's why we must act now to send a message to Congress to reject this disastrous Cap-and-Tax Scheme....

Supporters of the legislation are of course trying to downplay the cost of this scheme to the American people.

But if the bill does not directly and massively increase energy costs to consumers, how would it possibly achieve its stated aims?

It is only through these massive cost increases -- mandated and enforced by the federal government -- that the dubious goal of reducing carbon emissions could possibly be reached....
(emphasis added)

The Partnership for America's Energy Security has provided some useful stats on the cost each state would absorb.

So what should we do? Call your congressperson and express your dismay at this bill. Let them know that it will cost them in the next election should this pass! Please join me in this fight to save our country from those who would turn us awry.

For Liberty,

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Article ~

I wrote an article a few weeks ago (it will probably be going into one of the next issues of CET Ministries' newsletter) about death. I had these ideas floating around in my head, and after reading Mark Cahill's book One Heartbeat Away, I decided to write an article about death. So here is a portion of the article.
Death: Where Did It Come From?
by Phoebe Kautt

Death. Something we hate to think about, yet something so common. You turn on the TV, and what do you see? Death, murders, suicides. You listen to the 10 o’clock news, and what will you most definitely hear about? So-and-so committed suicide, at such-and-such a place there was a drive by shooting. Everywhere you look the reality of death is around you: cemeteries, car accidents, funeral homes, and occurrences such as the Columbine High School shooting. Maybe we don’t like to think about it, but death happens to 10 out of 10 people. It’s a fact, 100% of all people ultimately die. All of the most famous, rich & influential people of history have all met their end: death. Caesar, Napoleon, George Washington, Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein, Adolf Hitler and Babe Ruth are all in the grave. Michael Jordan, Alex Rodriguez, Madonna, David Rockefeller, Bill Gates and even Billy Graham will all eventually die.
But you might be wandering "Why are there deaths, murders, suicides and drive-by-shootings? Where and when did it all begin, and what or who caused it?"1 That’s a great question, and one that needs to be answered. It’s a question that everyone asks at least once.
Well, to understand the origination of death we must start at the beginning. Genesis 1:1 says, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." The rest of Genesis chapter 1 gives the account of creation. As you read it you will see the phrase "and God saw that it was good" five times throughout the entirety of the chapter. Then, at the very end of the chapter, in verse 31 it says, "And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good." (my emphasis) When God says that something is "very good," that means that it’s very good. That means that there was no death, no suffering, no murders, when God created this universe. Evolutionists believe that death has always been, and will always be. Contrary to that belief, when God created Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, they were not standing on top of millions of years of dead things [fossils]. Would God call fossils, thorns, brain tumors and death good? To have death before the creation is essentially to make God a liar. Titus 1:2 says, "God, that cannot lie." So, now we know that there was no death before the creation. The Garden of Eden was a perfect garden, one with no thorns or thistles. But the question still remains, "when did death come about?" and, "who or what caused it?"
To read the rest, you'll have to wait until it comes out in the newsletter. If you're not signed up for the newsletter, send us an email by clicking here.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Happy Birthday Dad!

Yesterday was Dad's birthday, and I failed to blog about it then. I was busy making the "special meal" and baking/frosting the cake. So here are some pictures from the little celebration. Happy Birthday Dad!! We love you!

Dad with his Carrot Cake birthday cake

Dad with one of his gifts
Mom being goofy with plastic glasses on (I think she looks like her mom about 25 or 30 years ago!) :)

Pictures from the Storm

Here, finally, are some pictures from the recent storm. We've been so busy lately, I really haven't had time to blog! I am really behind in blogging! We are thankful that the Lord protected us through the storm.

The two big limbs that came down from our front west tree
The limbs from the tree in our neighbor's yard that fell on our old brown Suburban and crunched the hood

Johanna snapped this photo. The limb looks like some kind of a snake with it's mouth open! :)
One of the biggest limbs of the tree just split! It ruined the whole tree, which was cut down a few days latter.

Our beloved old brown '82 suburban's crunched hood.

Goofiness ~

The other day we decided to be... well, goofy! We have some white fluffy stuff that I think came from the inside of a pillow. So, after history class we decided to make some wigs. It didn't work too well, and it was very hot!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Visit to Grandma & Grandpa's House

On Thursday (two weeks ago) we ALL went down to Grandma & Grandpa's house (Dad's parents). We helped clean up the house and the yard, picked [yummy] peaches & had a great time visiting. It was the first time for Mom to go down their in over 2 years!
Here are some pictures from the little trip:

On the way, watching an educational video on Joel's laptop.

Caleb working in their garage

Joel mowing in the backyard

Mom interviewing Grandpa about different events in his life

Yours truly (Phoebe) picking peaches off their peach tree (they were YUMMY!)
Abby helping me pick peaches by catching them :)
The freshly picked juicy peaches!
Grandpa, Johanna, Mom, Grandma & Dad chatting around the dining room table.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Storm

The sub with half of the tree laid across the hood - the hood has been caved in temporarally but beyond that no further damage was sustained by any of our other vehicles or our house. God be praised!

The sky after the storm, very pretty.

Here are the smaller branches from the tree on the driveway. We have already chopped most of it back as of this morning.

The tree in the front, it will most likely have to come down completely. Which makes me sad in some ways and happy in others, it is an old tree.

Last evening we got word via our radio, that a large and powerful cell of thunderstorms was headed our way. Around 7 PM the tornado sirens sounded and the wind picked up. I was in the front room (blueroom/dining room) when I heard this snapping sound and looked up just in time to see two of our trees branches come crashing down. I then proceeded to tell those in the hallway (taking cover from the tornado) about what had happened. Caleb was in the garage and so I walked out there to let him know and as I was explaining the situation to him our neighbor's tree split in half - right before our eyes. It was a strange experience. :) Dad was in Frisco (about 20 minutes away to the West) visiting with a family from our church and while he was there the power went out! Thankfully despite the fact that there was a tornado near our house everyone is fine and no major damage occurred. We will be posting more photos of the damage at our house and here at the church.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

A strange occurrence

The other day, I was in our garden looking at something, when a butterfly flew around and then landed on my skirt. I coaxed to get on my finger and it did! :-)

On my skirt

On my finger

Visit from the Wahlquists

A few days ago, some of the Wahlquists came over. We all really enjoyed their visit.

Mom, Mrs. Wahlquist & Abby chatting before they left
Miss Deborah

A Miraculous Healing ~

We are a part of a "health care program" called Christian Healthcare Ministries, which is a program where Christians help other Christians with their medical expenses. Anyway, in their latest issue of their monthly newsletter (June 2009) there was the following article:

Pastor Steven Pawley of Appleton, New York, knows that God still performs miracles. His six-year-old son, Aaron, is living proof.

On April 10, 2009, the young son of a visiting missionary picked up a chunk of wood from the Pawleys' wood stove and heaved it into the air. Aaron was walking by when the wood struck him in the face. A piece of wood measuring 1/4" x 1/2" became embedded in his eye socket.

Steven and his wife, Lorie, decided not to extract the wood or even rinse Aaron's eye since they couldn't determine how deeply the wood had penetrated. "We knew right away that it was very serious," Steven said. "We couldn't tell if the wood had punctured Aaron's eyeball."

The Pawleys helped calm Aaron. "Daddy, am I going to lose my eye?" Aaron asked. "All I could tell him was, 'I don't know, but it's the Lord's eye and He will do what He thinks is best,'" Steven recalled.

Paramedics arriving shortly thereafter agreed that the eye should not be touched. The paramedics transported Aaron and his family to receive specialized care at a children's hospital in Buffalo, about an hour away.

The next several hours were grueling. At the hospital, a nurse, resident doctor and primary emergency room doctor examined Aaron. All agreed that the best course of action was to call in an opthamologist.

"Throughout the ordeal we prayed together and an amazing peace came over all of us," Steven said. "The paramedics, nurses and doctors couldn't believe how calm Aaron was. They kept taking his vital signs to see it he was in shock, but he was fin. It was a great witness to the medical personnel."

The eye doctor, expecting to have to perform surgery, arrived after Aaron underwent a CAT scan. As she removed the bandage from Aaron's face, everyone saw that the piece of wood was lying on his cheek! A complete eye examination revealed that the eye had been completely restored without as much as a scratch.

"We immediately started praising God," Steven said. "We are grateful to the many people - including our church and the family of the missionary who had been visiting us - who were praying and interceding for us before God's throne."

This is a true story... and amazing! Isn't it so awesome how God works?! You can check out their website for more about their newsletter.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Dad ~

The following is from a post from Abby's blog about our Dad. Since I'm not really a writer (and she is!), I'll let her do the writing. I agree so much with what she wrote in this little "article". Enjoy!

June is such a pretty month here in the South. The sky is clear and blue, the sun shines a little brighter than in previous months, summer is almost upon us.

Besides all of that, June is a special month for me because we celebrate two important days in our family. My Dad’s birthday (June 18th) and Father’s Day.

Caleb and Dad

Dad has always been such a stable, consistent voice of truth in my life. I am grateful for his servants heart, his caring attitude towards people he doesn’t even know and his respect and love for my Mother. As a minister of the Gospel of Christ, his role in the church is more visible. His job is stressful, enjoyable, and requires a lot of time and attention.

Every Saturday night he begins the lengthy process that he has spent a majority of his week preparing for. Writing his sermon by hand (20 plus pages). He has done this for as long as I can remember. It may be “old school” but it is clearly unique in this age of fast technology. He writes so hard we joke that it’s braille. :)

He has taught me much about what life is all about and the importance of making a difference in this wretched world. A difference that is the only thing that will eternally matter…. Jesus Christ.
Through the 18 years that he has been preaching at this church, he has grown. Our church may be small in numbers from week to week, but his impact on the community has been large. Besides, numbers don’t really tell a story. Saved souls do.

His commitment to his marriage to Mom has been refreshing in this age of instant gratification. They have been married for almost 29 years. Sure they’ve had their ups and downs, all marriages do. But because of their commitment to God and each other, their love is stronger every day. It is a blessing to be apart of that legacy. Something to live up to, I guess you could say.

Because of their team work, they now have six children. Joel is an adult at almost twenty-three. He is like Dad in so many ways, both in looks and character. He is the leader of we kids, and since he works full time I find it hard to fill his shoes. I am next in line at nineteen Its a hard age because sometimes I feel caught between childhood and adulthood. God is good. Caleb is after me – growing into manhood with such gusto. Being the tallest of all of us, some people mistakenly think he’s the oldest. At almost seventeen he has matured in so many ways over the last four years. Phoebe is playful as ever. She also inherited Dad’s looks and character. She’ll be fourteen in August and its hard to imagine sometimes. Johanna is eleven, bookish and thoughtful. I guess she got that from Mom (the bookish-ness). Her creative mind runs circles around us a lot of times. What a blessing it was on that cold February to welcome her into our circle. Jaden, six, closes out the family. His energy level far surpasses the rest of us. His insightful questions stumps us frequently and cause us to think harder about life in general and whatever his questions was in particular. A boy of boundless curiosity, we are hard put to keep him in check at times.

Dad will always be my hero. The one who loved me as an infant and cuddled me in his strong arms. The one who threw me high into the air and caught me securely as I laughed. The one who applied corporal punishment in a loving but firm way, to let his rebellious daughter know he loved her but there are limits. The one who continues to be a clear voice of reason and guidance in my life as I grow into the woman God wants me to be. He will always be the best dad in the world!

He truly lives up to his name, David (Hebrew – Beloved). He is beloved.

I love you Dad! Happy June.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

My first "baby-sitting" experience

Yesterday morning while I was making birthday and anniversary cards, the phone rang and Caleb answered it. It was one of our good friends, Beka M. and she said that she was going to get her hair cut at the barbershop and she needed to take her almost two-year-old son, Alex with her, but she needed to have someone watch him. So, since I am the only one (in our family) that Alex likes the most, she asked for me to go with her and Alex and watch him. I was delighted, because I love little Alex! :-) He's one of my many little buddies! LOL. ;-) I also was happy because this was the first "baby-sitting" job I had done.

All went well, and I miss him! :-) He's so cute. Of course, I had the handy-dandy camera with me and snapped four photos of him. My favorite is the last one, the one of him through the mirror. Here they are:

Alex doesn't always like to look at the camera! I used to be that way, too---- I hated having photos taken of me! LOL!

Alex and his "shape ball". Can you believe that I used to play with one of those?! Seriously, I did! :-)

Lookin' 'round

Looking at Alex through the mirror and playing peek-a-boo really made him laugh.