Saturday, June 27, 2009

The enemy did this...


Can you see them?? Look reeeeeally hard. Down underneath the
wide leaves of the weeds. They're there, I promise.
Yes! That's it! Those tiny, ferny shoots. Our carrots.

I hesitated sharing this photo. The unsightly state of our garden
was rather embarrassing. I was behind in my duties, and the weeds
had taken over. Thankfully, we were sent a lovely little rain this
week which softened up the ground and after a few hours things
are looking much more victorious in the garden.
Introducing....the carrots!!

What really struck me while weeding, other than the general
aching of my back and the salty beads of sweat on my face, was
how daunting the task was. I did not look forward to trying
to work through all those weeds. In my mind there were
so many good reasons why I should not be doing this - the
ridiculous heat, the enormousness of the task (tripled by trying
to keep 3 children out of mischief while I worked), and a belly
which is not quite condusive to being doubled over or
maintaining any semblance of a lady-like squatting position.
To top it all off, I could hardly see any carrots down there.
All I could see was hundreds of nasty, growthy weeds.

But then, ever so slowly, my perspective changed.
As I pulled out the enemy weeds and carefully worked
through the tender little shoots, a beautiful row of
healthy, lush carrot tops began to emerge.

This is when my 'aha' moment hit. Those little carrots
had been there all along. I just wasn't looking at them.
I had allowed my whole view, and attitude, to be clouded
by the weeds. Was it a lot of hard work to get rid of the
weeds? Heck, yes! Was it a relaxing and easy task to pull
each one out of the soil and carefully out from among the
carrots? No. Was it worth it? Yes.

How often do we allow 'weeds' to block our view of
the blessings God is giving us in our life? I'm so
guilty of grumbling and complaining when, truly, I
have so much to be thankful for. Just as the rain softened
the dirt so that the weeds could come out with their roots,
I pray that Jesus, the Living Water, will soften my heart
so that the sin that has taken root there can be pulled
out. And let my 'view' not be caught up in the weeds,
but focused on the True Gardener, who is growing great
things in our life.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus
Look full in His wonderful face
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace

"The owner's servants came to him and said, 'Sir, didn't
you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the
weeds come from?' 'An enemy did this,' he replied."
-Matthew 13:27,28-

Posted by Picasa

Friday, June 26, 2009

The Scholars...

When Gracie Jo was 2, I enthusiastically picked up this bucket
of 'Mr.Wiggles' counters with visions of hours of fun doing math
together...WRONG!! More like hours of frustration, for both of us.
Anyways, here we are two years later, and math is still not Gracie's
strong point. Silas on the other hand, found the bucket of counters
in our 'school' cupboard the other day and began his own
self-tutored math lesson. Unbelievable! Although Gracie can count
higher, Silas' number recognition and math concepts are just as
strong, if not stronger than Gracie's. I'm not sure where he gets
the 'number bug', both Pete and I are very poor at math.
We've always joked that if we home-schooled the kids,
we'd have to get a tutor in for the math!
Anyways, here's our boy 'playing with his Hermie and Wormies'.



And while math may not be her strong point, we were so very proud
when Gracie Jo brought home her JK certificate.
Along with getting her crests for passing junior kindergarten
and winning the Maryborough speech contest, Gracie got awards
for courtesy, good listening and friendship. What was extra
special about this, was that every morning while we drive
to school we pray together and every day we pray that
Gracie will be a good listener and helper for her teacher,
that she'll be a good friend to everyone in her class,
especially kids who other's make fun of, and that she'll
shine Jesus' love to everyone she meets. When I told Gracie
what her awards were for, the first thing she said was
"Of course I got those, Mom! That's what we asked God for!"

"At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit,
said 'I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth,
because you have hidden these things from the wise
and learned, and revealed them to little children.
Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.' "
-Luke 10:21-

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Come out, come out, wherever you are!!

I couldn't find Levi when it was time for breakfast.
After calling him a few times, we went on the hunt...
We found him...ahem...in the laundry room.

Such a little stinker!! Good thing he's so cute :)
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Plethora of Pictures...

You'll have to bear with me this morning as I have a TONNE of pictures
to share with you! We had a lovely day on Sunday celebrating Father's Day
in the park.
Our home church went to a playground in Fergus where we met
up with my parents, and Dan's parents for a picnic lunch. We had a short
Bible lesson with the kiddies (keeping 5 kids under 4 attentive when there's
an awesome playground 2 feet away is no small feat I tell you!), and spent
the day enjoying the weather and each other's company. Here's some
shots to help you share in the fun of our day:

Just hangin' out with the best dad in the world!


A ginormous sandbox, shovel and a dump truck.
Does is get any better than this?

What says love like Oma's lap and pouch of candies?


Would you like a 'sand'wich Mr. Pete?


Don't those cheeks just beg for kisses?


Posing pretty for the camera.


Just chilling with the dads.


Tyler knows that bubbles = fun!!


Catching bubbles.


Blow a big one, Daddy!!


Can't get me, Mrs. Amanda!


How many kids can we fit on a giant grasshopper?

-----------------------------------------------

Hope you all had a wonderful time celebrating the dads in your life!

Praise the LORD.
Blessed is the man who fears the LORD,
who finds great delight in his commands.

His children will be mighty in the land;
the generation of the upright will be blessed.

~Psalm 112: 1,2~

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Getting ready for the rain...

We're supposed to get a good rain starting today and continuing on until Friday, which means we have been BUSY here!!! We haven't seen much of Peter the last two days, but he did manage to sneak home for a couple hours yesterday to help me sort out the sixty calves we shipped out at 4 o'clock this morning. Glad to have that out of the way! They've been busy getting the haylage in at the home farm and we're happy to report that as of 10:30 last night it's done...now if we can only get the bunker covered before the rain comes...
While Peter was busy at the home farm, we've been hopping around here too. Trying to get the garden weeded (apparently our composted manure was a bad idea - it was like spreading the whole garden full of weed seeds. I spent about 2 and half hours weeding and only got about a quarter done! Note to self - don't use the calf manure for fertilizer!!), the lawn mowed and keeping up with the barn chores. We've got one more small shipment of calves to go out tomorrow and hopefully I can get a bit more of the garden done before the rain comes. With the beautiful weather we've been outside as much as possible and sneaking in some play time along with all the work. By the end of the day we're tired, but happy!
Here's a peak at what we've been up to...

A great breeze yesterday brought out the kite.


A little bit o' badminton.

A lot of this.



Many buckets of water to keep the kids busy while I mow the lawn.



"Is this really okay, Mom?"


When I saw this picture for the first time I immediately thought of
this verse (italics are from the AKV...Angela Koobs Version )


"How beautiful in the wet, muddy sand
are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings,
who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion,
"Your God reigns!"

Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices;
together they shout for joy.
When the LORD returns to Zion,
they will see it with their own eyes.

Burst into songs of joy together,
you ruins of Jerusalem,
for the LORD has comforted his people,
he has redeemed Jerusalem.

The LORD will lay bare his holy arm
in the sight of all the nations,
and all the ends of the earth will see
the salvation of our God."

~Isaiah 52:7-10~

When I glimpse those dirty, wet piggy toes I praise God for using our children to bring His message of joy and love. So often, he uses them already to teach me great lessons of unconditional love and grace. And I pray that as they grow, stumbling through adolescence and eventually into adulthood, that they will continue to spread His Word and His love with the eagerness and delight they have now. How beautiful are those feet...







Saturday, June 13, 2009

Bookies...


Wow! I can't believe a whole week has already
gone by! I honestly have no idea where it went.
I didn't even touch my camera this week, so I'll
share these pictures from a few weeks ago...


Every night before bed, Gracie Jo and Silas
are allowed to pick three books to bring to
bed with them. Almost every night when we
check on them, this is what we find. (There were
no books on the floor when we tucked them in.)
I'd like to put a hidden camera in their room to
see whether they actually LOOK at all these
books or just pull them out randomly and
throw them on the floor until they find 'the one'!
Regardless, I love that they love books.


This is Levi's favorite little reading nook. I don't usually
let the kids climb on top of here, but occasionally I'll
find Levi snuggled into this corner with a book.
I can hardly tell him no...I mean, you don't want to
discourage reading right? I love reading, always have.
So does Peter. For the first 5 years of our marriage
we didn't have a T.V., very condusive to reading,
and where we live now there is no reception so we're
definitely back into the books. I love seeing that
same passion in our kiddies! Here's to many hours
snuggled up together with our noses in the books!
Anyone reading anything good right now that we
should add to our list?

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, June 6, 2009

You would think...

This is what greets you when you enter our garage. One would wonder how many people actually live at our house?! And I'm embarrassed to admit that this is not even all of our footwear. The kids were playing outside when I took this picture (add 3 more pairs), Peter was away (another pair) and I was wearing my shoes. Plus, our 'good' shoes are inside the house in the closet. Yipes!! My only consolation is the fact that almost all of these are either hand-me-downs, gifts or from a second-hand store. Still...
Today is wedding #2 of the five we have this summer. Peter's in the wedding party, so he left for London yesterday already. I'll be meeting him there this afternoon. It sure was strange going to bed without him last night. I think the whole (almost) 7 years we've been married, we've only been apart overnight 7 times...and 3 of those nights were when I was in the hospital after the kids were born. Anyways, I can't wait to see him! The wedding party is going to be all decked out in tuxedos. I've never seen Pete in a tux - I may just swoon :) Hopefully I'll get some good pictures to share with you for next week. Hope you all have a lovely weekend! We're praying for a little rain here. The hay isn't cut yet, and the garden and crops could use a little watering. Just for the weekend - then bring on the sun and first cut! I have a feeling things are going to get busy. But first, the weekend! Enjoy! xoxox

Peek-a-boo...

We're starting to see some signs of life in the garden.
The beans are just starting to poke their way through.

For as the soil makes the sprout come up and a garden causes seeds to grow, so the Sovereign LORD will make righteousness and praise spring up before all nations. Isaiah 61:11

The beets are up in full force.


The sunflowers are making a lovely appearance already.


The coldframe is full of deliciousness.


And we're enjoying lots of these!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Baseball and little princesses...

It's been a busy, busy week here at the Koobs'. After a great weekend full of wedding celebrations and visiting family and friends in Grimsby, we arrived home tired but happy. Peter's mom and dad went away from Sunday to Tuesday for a much needed little break, so we didn't see much of Peter those days. Although I got to spend some quality time with him in the barn when my mom came up for the afternoon on Tuesday. We got all our calves sorted and ready for shipping Wednesday and Thursday. Thanks so much Mom!! We had 50 calves go out this week and another 150 are coming in, so things are hoppin' around here (and noisy! whenever you bring new animals to the barn it always takes them a bit to settle in). On Monday Pete managed to slip into the doctor's to see how his ringworm was responding to the treatment. It had developed into a 'soft tissue infection', but the antibiotics do seem to be slowly clearing it up. Thank you to everyone for your prayers and concern. We're thankful to see things on the mend.
Mom and Dad (Koobs) visited with Uncle Jan, Aunt Hilda and Nicole while they were away, and came home with a trunkload of treasures for our family. We do love hand-me-downs!! We're so thankful for the thoughtfulness and generousity of our extended family. We continue to be richly blessed by their care for us. After receiving such a wonderful surprise, our family has two new loves:

Baseball!

Which Silas is picking up amazingly quick for a 2 1/2 year old!

And...

Princesses!! A box full of dress-up clothes is fulfilling Gracie Jo's every diva desire.
It amazes me how her whole countenance changes when she puts on her princess gear.
From her mannerisms to her speech, she seems to understand that a princess behaves like
a princess...and I know I didn't teach her that! I'm still trying to figure out where she's gotten
this girly-girl demeanor? Even now I'm at a loss when she asks me to play Barbies.

What really strikes me is how the physical act of choosing and wearing certain things can change her entire attitude, and she knows this intrinsically. How often could we not benefit from purposefully choosing our behaviour in response to certain situations, regardless of how we feel?

"...a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair."
Isaiah 61:3 (Read all of Isaiah 61 for a powerful reminder of what has given to us as his children).



And just in case your spirit is still heavy...
Poor Levi is the unwitting accomplice to many of Gracie Jo and Silas' shenanigans.
I'll have to remember to tuck this little gem of a picture away for the future...

Blessings, from the Koobs Klan
xoxox