Thursday, February 23, 2012

Lent...purification of the heart

The season of Lent is upon us.  This year, I'm reading a few different books during this time...the first is Bread and Wine and the second is Sacred Space for Lent 2012.  I did not grow up practicing Lent, as most evangelical Christians don't; however, the past few years I've become more and more interested in the Lenten season, especially when contrasted to the amount of time we as Christians spend on Christmas Advent.  Since Easter is the very foundation on which our faith exists, it seems only right to spend time in reflection during Lent. 
 There are a few different blogs I read that are talking about the same thing today:
Mustard Seeds
No. 17 Cherry Tree Lane
Here is a portion of "The Ballad of Reading Gaol" by Oscar Wilde as shared in "Bread and Wine" that I was touched by today.  It is only through our brokenness that Christ can enter in and restore us to Him. 
And thus we rust Life's iron chain
Degraded and alone:
And some men curse, and some men weep,
And some men make no moan:
But God's eternal Laws are kind And break the heart of stone.

And every human heart that breaks,
In prison-cell or yard,
Is as that broken box that gave
Its treasure to the Lord,
And filled the unclean leper's house
With the scent of costliest nard.

Ah! happy day they whose hearts can break
And peace of pardon win!
How else may man make straight his plan
And cleanse his soul from Sin?
How else but through a broken heart
May Lord Christ enter in?

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Blizzardly Estes - Welcome Christmas!

The day after Thanksgiving we drove to Estes Park for their Christmas Light Parade.  We joined our friends, the Banksons there and were surprised by an unexpected blizzard that swooped in and swirled about us for about 20 minutes (during the bulk of the parade).  The kids were bundled in their winter garb, so they were toasty warm save their little pink noses.  It sure felt like Christmas!







 Grady and his buddy, Blake.  They have so much fun together.

Our bundled family.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

We spent Thanksgiving with some friends of ours.  We had a great time relaxing and enjoying the lightened cooking load (substantial for me this year).  The kids had their own table (save the baby girls).  Allison cooked a beautiful Turkey - her first time!








 Grady and Cohen watching Calliou





 Allison & Helmsley

Monday, November 14, 2011

fortbuilding.fall.fallingasleep

We helped Grady build his first blanket fort this November.  Daddy showed him all the tricks, chairs, lots and lots of blankets and the art of anchoring.  Grady thought this was amazing.  He loved piling books in the fort and had a never ending supply of blankets that kept coming from his room upstairs.  We left it up for a few days before it "collapsed" - also known as curiousity..."what happens if I pull this blanket?..."


We tried our hands at a few fall art projects.  Leaf faces.  This is our leaf family by Grady and Mommy:

This was too cute not to include.  Lucy fell asleep during dinner one night.  Both my kids are pretty good eaters so this is a rare sight that they are too tired to eat...but here's proof that it has happened!


Grady, the photographer

Friday, November 04, 2011

Halloween

For Halloween this year we went to our church's Trunk or Treat the Friday before.  On Halloween we went to Chuckee Cheese after hitting a few neighbors houses for trick-or-treating.  Lucy was a cute little ladybug and Grady was spiderman!  They both had a lot of fun and enjoyed playing with all of their friends and seeing their costumes!






The night of Halloween we had a visit from the pumpkin fairy!  Grady got to pick 10 pieces of candy and leave the rest for the pumpkin fairy.  She left him a Percy train for his Thomas collection in return for the candy.  Grady thought that was a pretty good trade-off! And phew, a much better apres-Halloween week with much less fighting over candy!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

My Grandma Georgia Etta Close



My Grandma Georgia went to be with Jesus on September 23rd.  She was an inspiration to our family and will always be remembered.  She left a legacy of family and I'll always remember her as a mary in a world of marthas.  Perfection was not her hallmark, nor her goal, but she loved her family and friends more than anything in this world.  She spent countless hours in conversation with those she loved.  She always told me "there's nothing better than a fresh baby" from the moment she knew I was pregnant with Grady.  She encouraged me to cherish the moments of their younger years saying it's wonderful when you are their whole world.  Lucy Etta was named after her and we pray her legacy of family first will be passed down through our family as well.  We were blessed to know you Grandma and can't wait to see you in heaven again someday.  Until then, give Jesus, Grandpa, Chuck, and Jerry a big hug for us and enjoy the party.  We love you.

Here's the obituary my dad and Uncle Tom wrote:

Georgia Etta Close, 90, passed very peacefully from this world Friday evening, September 23, 2011, at her home on the Clarks Fork River, after a wonderful day planned by God with very special friends in Cody, Wyoming.   She is now in the eternal presence of Jesus, her Lord and Savior in heaven.  Georgia was the salt of earth and a true Wyoming Pioneer Lady.  To her family, she was a daughter, wife, mother, sister, aunt, Grandma and Great-Grandma.
Georgia was born July 13, 1921, in Deaver, Wyoming the first of nine children born to George E. Frame and Beulah M. Campbell Frame.  She married Harold N. Close December 12, 1942, in Billings, Montana.  Georgia and Harold raised seven children on the banks of Paint Creek and Clarks Fork of the Yellowstone River. Georgia was preceded in death by Harold, the sunshine of her life for 42 years in 1984; and her sons Charles (Chuck) Close and Jerald (Jerry) Close. Georgia attended school in Kane and Deaver and graduated, valedictorian, from high school in Lovell, Wyoming.  She received her teaching degree from the University of Wyoming.  Her first teaching job was at Marquette III rural school at the Bert Black sawmills camp on Carter Mountain on the South Fork near Cody, Wyoming.  The camp was close to Castle Rock near what is called Sawmill Park.  When the school was closed she then taught at the Paint Creek rural school south of the Clarks Fork River. It was while teaching at the Paint Creek School that she met and married Harold Close.  Georgia and Harold had six sons, Charles, Jerald, Glen, Barton, Roy, Thomas and one daughter Tamie. Georgia spent her life as a loving caregiver, caring for Tamie until June of this year.  
She is survived by daughter-in-laws Virginia (Chuck's wife), of Fresno, California, Bonnie (Jerry's wife) of Walla Walla, Washington,  son, Glen (Dana) of Eatonville, Washington, Bart of Frenchtown, Montana, Roy (Ronda) of Billings, Montana, Tom (Norma) of Powell, Wyoming, and Tamie of Cody, Wyoming.  
Georgia is also survived by 15 grand-children, Becky King, Gretchen (Paul) McCauley, Elizabeth Close, Jennie Close, Jerry (Lianon), Chris (Pam) Nash , Josh (May) Close, Natalie Close, Heidi (Brad) Lane, Adam Close, Megan (Bryan) Kreitzberg, Ryan Close, Chad (Sandra) Close, Amber (Pat) Olp, and Adriane Close, 16 great grand-children, and her sister-in-laws:  Marjorie (Elmer), Glory (Glen), and Pat (Charlie); brothers Ralph (Peggy) Frame, Tom (Evelyn) Frame, Hugh (Sylvia) Frame, Dave (Cheryl) Frame, and Warren (Glenda) Frame.

Grady's Birthday

We were in Montana for Grady's birthday by chance since it was right after my Grandma's funeral.  We went o Chuckee Cheese with the entire family...literally about 15 people following the kids around to different rides and eating pizza.  Grady loved it...he insisted on having everyone ride the horsey ride with him.  Uncle Ry Ry enjoyed it the most :)



Nana made a yummy peanut butter chocolate ice cream pie for Grady's birthday.



On our way back to Colorado we stopped at Sanford's Pub in Casper for a fun lunch.  The kids enjoyed all the fun dinosaurs in the parking lot and getting a reprieve from the road and carseats.









Steamboat Springs - a getaway

After the kids birthday party, Bryan's mom watched the kids for a few days so we could get out of dodge for awhile sans kids.  We went to Steamboat Springs, which I can now say is tied with Breckenridge for my favorite Colorado Mountain town.  It's beautiful!  The weather was amazing and it was so peaceful.  The Yampa River runs through town, and our first day there we ate lunch at a yummy little grill right on the river.  We hiked, strolled around town and consumed delicious food.  It was a great, relaxing trip.  Thanks for watching the kids Gramma Gale ;)







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