Posts Tagged ‘family’

Scenes from Bama-lam

“Bama-lam” is our affectionate name for our new state of residence.  Here are some pictures I’ve taken over the first six weeks or so our being here.

Pictures are the sole property of the author and are not intended for commercial use or any type of reproduction or distribution without the prior consent of the author.

What’s been going on…(Feb 09)

Or why Adam hasn’t been blogging as much recently…

I have found that blogging is one of those things that I enjoy doing out of the margins of my life and my thoughts.  Sometimes those margins are razor thin, if present at all, and this winter has been one of those times.  Thankfully, the reasons surrounding this have been very good:

The command center for helpmyunbelief will be relocating to the Huntsville, Alabama area in the coming months.  The Lord is bringing my term of service here to a close and has given me a new calling:  to serve North Hills Church (PCA) as Senior Pastor.   I have been especially privileged to serve at Calvary Presbyterian Church in Norfolk, Virginia for the past five years after graduating from Covenant Theological Seminary at the end of 2003.  Calvary and her people will always hold a special place in my heart and in my memories.

Here are some of what has happened in the past few months.

  • Beginning of January:  Candidating trip to North Hills.  The church extended a “call” to me after that trip – a call we were excited to receive and felt let by the Lord to accept.
  • We then began working feverishly (mostly on the weekends) to prepare our house for sale.  There has been much painting, fixing, sprucing, cleaining, packing, staging, etc…  Our house went on the market on February 12th.
  • February 10th:  I was received by Providence Presbytery and thus approved to begin serving North Hills.  This required my traveling back down to Huntsville.
  • Much time has also been spent praying, thinking, discussing, re-discussing, etc.. all of these matters.  We seldom (if ever) enter into anything of this nature lightly.  In this regard, I am very thankful for the many prayers that have been made by a close group of friends who have been following this matter closely, as well as the members of both churches.

So, I am sure life will continue to be interesting and provide a good opportunity to continue to grow in faith in the Lord.  So much more could be said regarding theses circumstances, but I will leave it for another time.   Blogging will continue to happen in the margins as I have them. Prayers are always accepted.  The thanks is mine.

Fall Fun

Beautiful fall day today…a little pumpkin carving – including E being disturbed by the inside of the pumpkin (thus, some of his facial contortions).  K did several faces for me (excited, frustrated, angry, confused).

Slice of Life: “don’t let him see this”

Context:  Last night.  My wife is out to dinner with some friends and E & K are having what we call “snuggle” time, but is really just a brief and hopefully quiet playtime for the kids before they are separated for bedtime.

This little episode starts with me hearing the sound of what might be a large bucket of legos being dumped out all over the floor in E’s room (we have hardwood floors).

Me:  Don’t make a mess (is there anything more ineffectual than yelling from another room not to make a mess, when you know good and well the mess has already happened?)

E & K:  No response

Twenty minutes later…E comes out to tell me that he needs to use the bathroom.  On his way to the bathroom he stops to give some instructions to K.  He, of course thinks he is being quiet and actually whispers:  Don’t let him see this!

Being the brilliant father that I am, I put the loud sound of legos together with E’s “whispered” instructions.  Now, you might think that I would go to investigate at that point, but no, I showed remarkable restraint and waited until E was back in his room.  I gently poked my head in the door to see my son surrounded by a thousand lego pieces scattered across the floor of his room (I don’t think this is hyperbole). 

E:  you weren’t suppose to see this.

Me: Ah, yes son, I know.  You’ll have to clean this up soon.

Later, I asked him what he was doing and he told me that he had been looking for particular pieces so that he could make a special helicopter gunship (he is a boy afterall).  And, to his credit, he cleaned up and talked his sister into helping – at least a little.  And yes, I helped some too.

Vacation: the good, the bad, & the ugly

We got back into town late last night from our two week vacation time of visiting family and friends.  It felt great to get away from things here, but it also feels great to be home again.  I think that is one of the biggest blessings of the time that we get to take off…feeling very happy to be home (that goes beyond just being happy to be in your own bed or your stuff).  Here is a rundown of some of our time away.

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Travelogue (1)

Notes from the road:

  • The first drive of our journey was uneventful, but felt a little long.  Just under nine hours in the car was plenty for me!
  • The next leg of journey has been delayed and possibly canceled.  We were suppose to travel down to Jacksonville, FL today.  However, it seems we would have arrived about the same time as Tropical Storm/Hurricane Fay.  Great timing!  So, we are sitting tight here in Atlanta and adjusting our schedule.  We are still hoping to make it to Jacksonville, Tampa, & Gainesville – but we really aren’t sure at this point.
  • Saw a bad accident on the highway yesterday (car flipped over) and it reminded me why we try not to take for granted our traveling mercies.  We pray before the start of every journey that the Lord would keep us safe from others and others safe from us.  Yesterday, L & K prayed for the people in the accident – hopefully everyone is okay.
  • Another travel tradition for our family is starting out every long trip by getting breakfast from Chick-fil-a.  That’s a favorite tradition.
  • We went to see Clone Wars (Star Wars) yesterday.  E has been looking forward to this because he knew that seeing a movie was going to be part of our vacation.  First of all, even the afternoon show was very expensive here in Atlanta ($30 – no wonder we don’t go to see movies more often).  As for the movie:  it felt long and the story-telling was disjointed.  In short, it was mostly about the fight scenes (which were cool for the first five minutes, but after that…).  Anyway, the kids enjoyed it and it could have been worse, but it was nowhere near even the worst Pixar movie.
  • Something that made me laugh:  I had to correct E for touching a mannequin as we entered a store and almost knocking it over.  He was oblivious.  It was in a different store that I was pointing out the mannequins and telling why we keep our hands to ourselves (L thinks that ironic coming from me).  We were in The Children’s Place and E started referring to the girl mannequins as “girlequinns” and boys as “boyequinns.”  Very funny and logical.

Leaving on a Jet Train

That’s a little joke:  I always sing that line wrong and it drive Lydia crazy.  I tend to sing song wrong a lot.  Anyway, we are off for vacation over the next two weeks.  We will be traveling to Georgia and Florida to visit family and friends.  It will also be nice just to have a change of pace and scenery.  Not sure what this will mean for blogging, but I hope to have some time just to think and possibly do some blogging/writing along the way (I’ve already got a few things percolating).  I will not be posting on Running Scared during this time.  So, pray for us if you are so inclined – especially since we are going to have a lot of hours in a small confined space.

10 Years Ago Today

What we had

  • Six years of history:  dating, fun times, sharing family & stories
  • Degrees from the best University in all the land
  • Love and respect for one another
  • A deep commitment to one another and some damaging concepts excised from our vocabulary
  • A desire to make the Lord the center of our relationship
  • A future together

What we have

  • Two beautiful and crazy children
  • A cat
  • A home – not just a house – full of joy (and frustration from time to time)
  • A calling & place
  • A degree from the best seminary in all the land
  • A couple cars that work most of the time

What remains

  • History together (sixteen years now)
  • Abiding love & respect
  • A future together
  • The Lord at the center of our relationship
  • And so much more than I could have hoped or asked!

Ten years ago today, we got married and haven’t look back (Except at the pictures where people ask how old I was when we go married, but that’s another story).

Happy Anniversary my love!


I hate stupid mapquest directions, poor signage, and traffic circles (and myself for getting frustrated…I think I need to read some chapters of Respectable Sins again).  Other than that I’m in DC to enjoy some time with  my wife (ten years of marriage in August) & sixteen total (or half of my life!).

Update #1:  We walked a mile+ from our hotel to 2 Amy’s Pizzeria.  We sat out on the back deck under a very pleasant sky and enjoyed a great meal together.

  • Appetizer: burratta
  • Main Course:  neapolitan style pizza with prosciutto & onion (sweet).  This was most excellent.
  • Dessert:  coffee & cannoli

What happens when…

you send your 5 1/2 year old out into the backyard with the digital camera?

Apparently quite a few shots of the appointed picture taker!

Excursus on Sycamore Trees

My previous post reminded of this article I wrote for our church newsletter three years back:

I have found at least two great reasons to have Sycamore trees in your yard – preferably one in the front yard and one in the back, as we do at our home.  First, these two wonderfully tall and full trees provide a generous amount of shade for our house and yard during the spring and summer.  There is a bit of shelter from the heat of the sun found under the large leaves clinging to branches jutting in every direction.  I must admit at the beginning of this fall that I was not enjoying our trees or appreciating them to the same degree as I noted above.  That is, until I experienced a wonderful fall day frolicking with E (2 years old) in the leaves that littered (actually covered) our backyard.  With a little help from the wind and a rake I created an enormous leaf pile – large enough to loose a small child in its midst.  It had all started innocently enough as E joined me in the back to pile up said leaves in preparation for their removal by my new toy – a leaf blower/vacuum.  Leaves have been raining down unfettered upon the yard for weeks now – and now was the time for them to receive their due!  This, of course, is where E comes in.  I had been loathing those Sycamore trees and their copious amount of leaves both already on the ground and those that are prepared to descend upon the yard once I have it looking just right.  In creating my piles to vacuum and mulch up, E saw an opportunity.  It’s hard to know, but it seemed to come naturally to him – leaf piles were created for joy.  His joy.

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Day at the Virginia Aquarium

Having been out of town and then followed with a busy week, I wanted to spend some time with the kids and give Lydia a break.  So, we went to the Virginia Aquarium in Virginia Beach (about 20 minutes away) on Monday.  Here are some pictures and some of the sights we enjoyed.  One of the exhibits that the kids loved the most was the “Construction Area” – E & K could have spent several hours playing with blocks and conveyor belt (as reflected in a number of pictures).  Also popular was anything with buttons that the kids could push.  Picture gallery is on the next page.

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Slice of Life: Conversations with a 5 year old

Here are some random conversations with my son from recent weeks:

This one came today (while the kids were riding bikes in the street):
Me: When are you going to let me teach you to ride your bike without training wheels?
E: (with stern look) Never.
E: (a few minutes later) Were you seven when you learned to ride your bike without training wheels?
Me: I was about your age
E: Really?
Me: Yes

Yesterday; I had the kids for the afternoon and we were driving home:
Me: When we get home I’m going to make you guys some dinner.
E: But you don’t know how to cook.

A few weeks ago; while driving to church:
E: There’s a church (passing by a church we pass by just about everyday)
Me: Yes; they love Jesus there also (conjecture on my part)
E: [name redacted] doesn’t love Jesus.
Us: Why? What makes you say that?
E: Because whenever I tell [classmate from preschool] about Jesus he say’s no
Us: Well, it’s a very good thing to tell people about Jesus but not everybody wants to hear about Jesus.
E: Do you know who else tells people about Jesus?
Us: Who?
E: Missionaries

E has told me recently that he would like to be a missionary. We certainly would be delighted with this (I think), but more than that, my prayer is that our children will surpass us in faith and witness.