January 31, 2006

Up to the snow

Every year a bunch of us homeschoolers group together, and drive up to the nearest ski resort to enjoy a day of skiing and snowboarding. As students in a school, we get a package with rentals, lift tickets, and lessons at an incredibly discounted price! The Parish Family Skiiers have taken advantage of the opportunity, and enjoy a few days every year racing down the runs and enjoying time together! Here we are, about to attack a series of new runs just put up in the resort. It's been a blessing to be able to enjoy the snow, speed, and a fantastic day out in God's splendid creation. Posted by Picasa

January 27, 2006

The Green Has Finally Arrived

Winter is the time for the comforting green color of the countryside of the central valley of California. Usually beginning in late October or early November, this year the green came late - in early December because the rains were late.

Of course, the green only lasts until around early April at which time the poppies appear for awhile and then the seasonal grass dies away into May. This leaves the golden color of dry grass lands during the late spring, summer, and fall.

This picture was taken near our southeast property corner. No...the fence in the foreground does not run on the property line.

The house and shop are situated near the northwest corner of the property, which corner is situated on the knoll above the house.

Question to ponder: How long is the diagonal dimension of a square with sides of 1/4 mile each?

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Titus the Dog

Titus the dog, wants some loving affection too!

Titus, may you be a courageous protector of little Jaelynn Grace!

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January 24, 2006

Man's best friend ~ Man's best teacher!

Sometimes when a man is a true gentleman, he is forced to suffer the consequences. When this brave knight-in-shining-armor witnessed his ladies being ill-used by a vulgar street gang, he dove in to save them! May all Christian men be willing to follow his example, hopefully without his results. ;-)
Unfortunately, the odds proved too great, and Ranger was found by his family looking as if he had taken a ride through a meat grinder. Since Simon was away, and Jeremy burst into tears at the sight of him, Mom and I gritted our teeth, and managed somehow to load him into the car, and race him off to the vet. After surgery, stitches, and drain tubes, he came home a little sore . . . but is recovering!

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January 21, 2006

Work Day

One of our goals in coming together as brothers and sisters in Christ has been to share each other's burdens. Property maintenance and improvement is just one of those burdens. I have been appreciating the opportunity to share work with Phil Seymour. Working together seems to make the work light and we seem to get more done.

We have been waiting for a break in the weather to drill some post holes and today was the day.

We spent 3 hours at the Seymour place, drilling and setting posts in about 20 holes around their pool. We rented a drill rig which made easy work of most of the digging...except for 4 holes. We could barely dent the hardpan.

We spent another 2 hours at our place drilling about 40 holes. We hope to create two paddocks within our present enclosure and build a shelter for Cowboy the horse.

So...while we worked we discussed courtship, evangelistic methods, ideas of overcoming Phil's hardpan, ideas for setting posts on top of the hardpan, ideas for replacing Phil's breezeway, some thoughts about how God justifies us, and how much of Romans 5 Phil will tackle tomorrow.

It was also good to see our sons having a good time working together. May the LORD raise them up to be strong men of faith.

Our wives and daughters supported us with food and drink, among their various duties of the day. Thank the LORD for them.


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January 19, 2006

"And you shall see your children's children . . ."

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God has blessed our family so richly with the birth of this new little one. What joy to think that God delights in new life . . . in giving us one of the most precious gifts He ever could! That what gives Him pleasure would bless us so much. Little Miss Parish is ever growing, and though we count our blessings that we are not farther, we are feeling keenly the three hours distance between us! She sends each of us into raptures with every smile, as the privilage of holding her is fought over. :-)
It has been far too long since a baby has been in our family . . . :-)

Sleepy Smiles

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Proud Daddy and Uncle!

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Our precious gift from God . . .

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January 18, 2006

Dutch Blitz

Dutch Blitz is a game of lightning speed.

I have to confess that my order of priorities is being constantly challenged while I play.

Stacks of cards must be neat and tidy...do they not?? However, the movements of the hand necessary to keep your wood pile neat take precious time...fractions of seconds...during which time, the young folks around you are madly laying out cards in the middle. (How do they do that??)

Not to mention the fact that all the piles in the middle are not orderly. What about those now, don't they also need to be kept in order?? The mental processing necessary to worry about such things is real drag on a person's game...because after all, you are supposed to be looking at the number of the card on top, comparing that what is in your Post and Blitz piles, making a decision to act, and then sending electrical impulses imprinted with vital directions to your fingers, via your neck, shoulder, arm, wrist, and hand to play a card. And that to be repeated for all the cards piles in the middle.

Of course, by the time the signal has had its good effect and your hand had performed its task and is decending on a certain pile with a carefully chosen card, some other hand appears from out of nowhere, slips a card on the pile first, and disappears. Leaving you with the dismal task of recalling your hand.

When I get good enough that I am not in continual retrograde scoring, it will be a day for real celebration. Is it possible to get to -100 before someone else gets to +100?


January 16, 2006

The Supreme Joy of the Christian...

This quote is a bit lengthy, but I encourage you to read it before clicking on your next blog link.
Chesterton had a way with words that I think even C.S. Lewis has a tough time beating. This comes at the close of his book Orthodoxy.

" Joy ought to be expansive; but for the agnostic it must be contracted....Grief ought to be a concentration; but for the agnostic its desolation is spread through an unthinkable eternity. This is what I call being born upside down....Christianity satisfies suddenly and perfectly man’s ancestral instinct for being the right way up; satisfies it supremely in this; that by its creed joy becomes something gigantic and sadness something special and small....We are perhaps permitted tragedy as a sort of merciful comedy: because the frantic energy of divine things would knock us down like a drunken farce. We can take our own tears more lightly than we could take the tremendous levities of the angels. So we sit perhaps in a starry chamber of silence, while the laughter of the heavens is too loud for us to hear.

Joy, which was the small publicity of the pagan, is the gigantic secret of the Christian.... The tremendous figure which fills the Gospels towers in this respect, as in every other, above all the thinkers who ever thought themselves tall. His pathos was natural, almost casual. The Stoics, ancient and modern, were proud of concealing their tears. He never concealed His tears; He showed them plainly on His open face at any daily sight, such as the far sight of His native city. Yet He concealed something. Solemn supermen and imperial diplomatists are proud of restraining their anger. He never restrained His anger. He flung furniture down the front steps of the Temple, and asked men how they expected to escape the damnation of Hell. Yet He restrained something. I say it with reverence; there was in that shattering personality a thread that must be called shyness. There was something that He hid from all men when He went up a mountain to pray. There was something that he covered constantly by abrupt silence or impetuous isolation. There was some one thing that was too great for God to show us when he walked upon our earth; and I have sometimes fancied that it was His mirth. "

-G. K. Chesterton

January 04, 2006

Holiday Time!

As we wave goodbye to 2005, and begin the journey down 2006, we leave many, many memories in that blessed year. To sum it all up in a few sentences, the Lord changed our lives, hearts, even our minds, dramatically in that year, mingling pangs of sorrow with smiles of joy. When we thought we were all alone, He blessed us so richly with precious families who reached out to us in love . . . creating friendships we wouldn't trade for the world.

It feels as if the Lord has made this year into a roller coaster ride of change, the only requirement being to trust Him!

We celebrated our New Years Day with the Haymond family. Interestingly, they had recently been on a missionary trip to Argentina the same time that we were gone in Texas and Michigan! As pictures were explained, and the highlights of each of our trips brought out, it was wonderful to see the Lords work, and the clear evidence of His grace.
Our weekend was filled with tense games of Dutch Blitz, (we finally have some cards! :-) visiting a hundred miles a minute, laughter, walks, singing and music making, and overall great fellowship.

May this New Year bring growth, praise, and a deeper knowledge and understanding of our Lord!

Mr. and Mrs. Haymond

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The Girls

From Left: Sally, Amy Haymond, Kristin Seymour,

In the Back: Kristen Haymond, Ashley H., Anastasia Seymour

Dear friends and sisters in Christ! Posted by Picasa

Dutch Blitz . . .

Some are captivated by a dutch game of speed . . . others by C.S. Lewis's 'A Grief Observed'. Posted by Picasa

A Walk in the Orange Groves

Anyone who visits the Parish family and goes on a walk, will likely be introduced to "our" orange grove path. :-) A walk is always refreshing, especially when the orange blossoms are in bloom! Posted by Picasa

Christmas Day ~

Our Christmas Day was lovely as we spent time with our two dear Grandma's; Grandma Shirly, Dad's mom, and Great Grandma Lucille, Grandma Shirley's mom. Time with these strong women of faith is always very special. We enjoyed a yummy dinner, complete with Great Grandma's famous green salad, (Can't have a family dinner without it!) and Mom's delicious red raspberry drink.
The day was topped off with a game of rook, and a group phone call to our cousin in Texas, Eliot. Eliot's birthday is on Christmas Day, so we all called to give him special birthday wishes!

I praise the Lord for my father, who is so concious of his to duty in leading and protecting his family. As we search out how to honor the Lord in the celebration of Christmas, I have realized how earnestly and honestly he is seeking out the matter, and is faithful to follow through with everything the Lord has revealed to us in our journey. Thank-you Dad!

~Sally Posted by Picasa