To Everything There Is A Season

A Time For Every Purpose Under Heaven

A blog about raising a young family and keeping Christ at the center of it.

The Cyrs

The Cyrs
Photo Credit: Rachel Dewhurst

Monday, April 25, 2011

A Time for Jelly Bean Topiaries

Jena's 1st birthday is coming up and for the theme I choose to do jelly beans because we call her Jena Bean and because I didn't love anything the stores were selling. I do not normally go all out for birthdays. All the kids have had a 1st birthday and we always celebrate with family, sometimes extended family sometimes not. I honestly feel birthday parties have gotten a little crazy when it comes to how extravagant some can be. Then again, who am I to tell people how to spend their money!  I say all this to say that for someone who isn't usually into big birthday parties, I am going nuts with Jena's party. I think it's because she's my first girl and let's face it, she's spoiled and I'm a little obsessed with her. My mother-in-law sent me this link for instructions on how to make a Jelly Bean Topiary. I fell in love with this idea and decided I would make these for Jena's party. I tweaked it a little to make it my own as you can see. It was a little time consuming but so worth the effort. I love how they turned out. 

What You'll Need: (to make one)
Approx. 150-200 long pearlized pins
1 foam ball 
Long wooden dowel
A bucket 
Green foam 
Moss or colored grass
Approx. 3 bags of jelly beans
Ribbon (optional)

I did not paint my foam balls, I left them white. Start by taking the dowel and making a small hole in one end of the foam ball. For the jelly beans any brand will do. It's up to you what color you want them. I happened to find the Jolly Rancher brand for $0.88 a bag at Marden's so that's what I used. Start pinning the jelly beans to the foam ball. You can do this however you want. I went in a circular pattern for one and for the second did a more random pattern. Stick a long pin in the middle of the jelly bean to secure it to the foam ball. Do this till it's completely covered. Place the green foam at the bottom of the bucket. When the foam ball is completely covered with jelly beans stick the wooden dowel into it then place it in the bucket using the green foam to secure it. I had to use rocks to weight down the foam once the topiary was in place because it was too top heavy. Then cover the rocks with moss or colored grass. If you like you can tie ribbon around the dowel. It's that easy!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

A Time for April Flurries?

The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew
 and hanged on a tree. ~Acts 5:30

This is what the day before Easter looks like at our house. Are you jealous?? So this is what the boys are doing to pass the time away:

While they are painting I am getting food ready for Easter dinner tomorrow. One thing I am making   for the first time is my grandmother's fruit slaw. She always makes this salad at our family gatherings and we love it!

Fruit Slaw
1/2 medium cabbage
1 apple
1 banana 
1 orange
8-10 marachino cherries
2-3 T mayo
2-3 t cherry juice

1. Shred cabbage
2. Peel fruit and cut into small pieces; add to cabbage
3. Mix in mayo and cherry juice. You can adjust the amounts to suit your taste

Friday, April 22, 2011

A Time to Write an Essay

Thy father and thy mother shall be glad, and she that
 bare thee shall rejoice.  ~Proverbs 23:25

A few months back I was asked to write an essay about how becoming a mom changed my life. Here is the link if you'd like to read it.
It's doesn't seem possible
she'll be 1 in a couple weeks!!

Jena holding the first bloom
of my flower garden
In anticipation of
spring we painted

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Time to Pray for the Garth Family

As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the LORD is tried: he is a 
buckler to all those that trust in him. ~Psalm 18:30

What did you do with your kids today? While you were doing what you did, were you happy to do it? I know I'm not always thankful for the things I get to do with my kids. I know that at least once this week I complained that my kids were too hyper and I wish they would just sit still for 10 minutes. I know at least once this week I was dreading giving haircuts and baths and I also know that at least once this week I was annoyed that I got woken up in the middle of the night 3 times because three different kids had issues I had to deal with. And I definitely know I was wishing I had a vacation planned in my near future. Well for my friends, John & Laura, their life changed forever after a visit with the doctor for a stomach ache their son was complaining of turned out to be Leukemia. 

Johnny is 2 1/2. Instead of running around and playing with his sister his life now consists of the 4 walls of the 6th floor at Children's Hospital in Boston, chemotherapy treatments and spinal taps. His parents are no longer complaining about giving haircuts because in about 2 weeks his hair is going to start falling out. They no longer complain that they can't keep up with him because he refuses to walk because of the pain in his bones the cancer causes. They wish the reason they were sleep deprived were because of the reasons we complain about. Instead they are taking turns sleeping in Johnny's room while the other tries to get a good nights sleep at the Ronald McDonald house.  And today they aren't praying that he behaves well like most of us would be. Instead they are praying that his reaction to the spinal tap he will receive today goes better than the one he had 3 days ago and that the doctors find no leukemia in the fluid so this can be his last spinal tap. And they don't have the luxury of wishing for a vacation anymore because for the next 2 years their life will consist of weekly visits to Boston for chemotherapy...and thats if his prognosis remains as hopeful as the doctors are predicting right now. 

For some people receiving this kind of news would make them bitter. It would make some curse God. But not this family. I had the opportunity, with another friend, to go visit Laura and Johnny and it was a blessing to see Laura so positive and still thanking God for how he has provided in their lives so far. They will have to remain in Boston till the beginning of May. Until then she and her husband are separated from their 1 year old daughter, Anna, who is with Laura's sister. God has given them that peace that passes all understanding and as much as they miss Anna they are so thankful she is in good hands and being so well cared for. They know that right now all their focus and strength needs to go to Johnny. Please pray for this family. They have a long road ahead of them and they are going to need all the love, prayers and support they can get. If you feel led to write a note of encouragement to this family send it to:
6 North, Children's Hospital Boston (until May 10)
The Garth Family
300 Longwood Ave
Boston, MA 02115
Prayer Requests:
1. Johnny has a spinal tap today. This procedure has been hard on Johnny in the past. Pray the doctors do not find any leukemia in the fluid today.
2. Wisdom for the doctors as they determine Johnny's future with this disease.
3. Strength for John & Laura. Laura is 17 weeks pregnant.
4. Peace in their hearts as they are separated from their daughter.
5. That God would continue to provide for them and meet their needs.