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, June 27, 2011

A Time for Camping

And he withdrew himself into the wilderness, and prayed. ~ Luke 5:16

It's no mystery to us why Jesus would go into the wilderness to pray and get away from everything. It's so peaceful in the wilderness! We kinda live in the woods. We have neighbors and we're about 15 minutes from all our needs as far as gas and groceries go but what I really love about our house is that it's peaceful out here. Our neighbors are close but not too close and there's no heavy traffic to deal with. I don't think I could ever live in a city or even in a neighborhood where the houses are really close together and you don't have much privacy. 

Jena in her pack n play in
the tent!
All the kids minus 2 that
were sleeping
So when the idea came up among some of our friends that we all go camping together I wasn't resistant because I don't like to be outdoors in nature it was because I've been saying I don't want to go camping with kids in diapers. Just something about sleeping in a tent with so many little ones did not appeal to me. I wanted to wait till all the kids were a little older. But everyone assured me it would be fine because we'd all be there to help each other out so we agreed to go. We went to White Lake Campground in Tamworth, NH. What a great campground! It has a great lake that is nice and shallow for awhile for little kids, a huge beach area with picnic tables and canoes and paddle boats you can rent. It also has a really nice playground with two sections for younger and older kids. We were 4 families with 12 kids combined, the oldest being 7 and the youngest being about 9 months and all the kids played so well together. The first night was rough because not only was it pouring with thunder and lightning but Jena also cried most of the night so she and I got about 2 hours of sleep. The next night though all our kids slept very well. We all planned our own meals but we took all the picnic tables from our 4 sites and made one big "mess hall" at one campsite so we could do all our cooking and eating together. This worked out really well. My only regret is that we didn't plan a longer trip. It's a lot of work for only a weekend. It was so much fun that we decided we're definitely doing this next year, only next time for 4 days. 

Will was supposed to be napping but when Ben
went over to our site to get something he found Will
like this trying to see what was going on! Haha!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

A Time to See How Our Garden Grows

He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the 
service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth; ~ Psalm 104:14

Things are starting to come up! I won't lie, I was a little nervous that we wouldn't produce anything but it seems, so far, the garden is doing well. 
Add caption
We've got a lot of onions up, the string beans and peas are doing really well too and we are going to have so many radishes! The weeds are really minimal too. From what I've been told the reason for this is because every fall they till this garden and throw lime in the soil. Apparently this helps keep the weeds out and from what we've seen it seems to be true! I do think we'll have to  come and thin out some stuff before we head up north for a couple weeks...can't wait to see what's grown when we return!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A Time for a Story

Yesterday Noah's class had an Author's Tea where the parent's could come and listen to the stories they had "published". They wrote and illustrated a book about their families. Noah had two invitations to hand out to people and he really wanted Oma and his Dad there. Oma lives far away and couldn't make it but Ben got out of work early to come. The day before the Tea we are driving home and I mention to Noah that Ben is coming. He says, "I thought maybe he was coming." I say, "No he's definitely coming now". Noah says very nervously, "I don't think daddy's going to like my story..." Here's the story and here's why:

The Cyr Family 
By Noah Cyr

I have a big family. I have 7 people in my family. My mom's name is Melissa and my dad's name is Ben. My mom is 32 and my dad is 31. My mom does not work but my dad works at the Ship Yard. He works on submarines. My mom's favorite color is orange. My mom does most of the work. My dad is lazy sometimes. My dad has a beard but he shaves his beard. My mom likes to plant flowers. My dad does not like to plant flowers. I have to help my mom plant flowers. My sister is 1 and my brother is 5 and my other brother is 2 and my other brother is 3 and I am 7.My brothers' names are Gabe and Owen and Will. My brothers like dinosaurs and Spiderman. Owen's favorite dinosaur is Velociraptor. Owen likes pirates and my 3 year old likes Star Wars and I like army men and my 2 year old likes all kinds of things. I don't have any pets. I want a salamander for a pet. And I want a dog and a cat. I love my mom and dad and my brothers and my sister.

I just have to say, for the record, that Ben, is NOT lazy! Poor Noah was so stressed and felt so badly he had written it that before he got to the sentence he turned to Mrs. Gilly and whispered, "I'm not going to read that sentence."  We all had a good laugh and I especially love that even still Noah takes every opportunity he can to tell people how old we are!

Monday, June 13, 2011

A Time for Japan

And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! ~ Romans 10:15

We had the privilege of hosting a missionary to Japan, Rick Enterline, this past weekend. Our church has been supporting he and his wife for over 20 years now and it was so great to finally meet him as he has not visited in the 5 years we've been attending. His wife, Becky, could not join him but I was able to "meet" her over the phone. It's always great for the kids to meet missionaries so we take any opportunity we can to have them in our home. Children hear so much about missionaries who go all over the world, sacrificing so much, to tell others about Jesus that it's so nice when they get to sit with one and ask them questions. He gave each of the boys an origami bird that flaps it's wings, which they were really excited about, then taught the older two to make an origami crane. We just happened to have the paper because we bought a kit last year to teach the boys and Ben and I got so frustrated with the instructions that it didn't get further then teaching them to make a really awful looking origami canoe! 

With everything that is going on in Japan currently with the destruction from the tsunami and the nuclear power plant, the Enterline's are unsure if they will be able to return to the same part of Japan they have been ministering to for over 20 years. Right now the Japanese government is telling them its unsafe to return to their home as radiation levels are high. They are so concerned for their friends and church family over there who have lost everything and are now worried for their health due to the radiation they have been exposed to. They have a lot to pray about right now and the burden for this country and the salvation of souls is so evident as you speak with Rick. He told us at church last night that he had just read an article of the Japanese government saying if they cannot get this nuclear power plant under control it's likely that in the next 10-20 years Japan will be uninhabitable! They need our prayers desperately so if you think of this family and the people of Japan lift them up in prayer!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

A Time to Be Forgetful: ***AN UPDATE***

Shortly after I wrote THIS POST I was so bothered by the fact that these items had been lost....on top of not being able to find all of Noah & Owen's summer clothes from last year (which I couldn't mention in the last post because really, that's my fault they were misplaced!) so I decided to just give these matters to the Lord and pray. One day into praying for these items I was cleaning the playroom and found Noah's glasses. PTL! Then 3 days after praying for the remaining items I was in the attic getting a suitcase for a weekend trip we were taking and couldn't believe how heavy it was. I opened it up to find ALL the summer clothes I thought I had lost...don't even ask me why they were there, I have no idea! PTL! Then one week after praying for the jacket Owen comes in the door from school and says to me, "Mom, I found Noah's jacket". I thought he was talking about the fleece jacket Noah had left at school (I know, right!) so just said, "O, great Owen, thanks". When I saw Noah come inside with his LLBean winter jacket I was the most excited person! Not only because it was found but because God showed me that week how awesome the power of prayer is! Sometimes we can know these things but not always believe in it...take it from me....don't ever doubt the power of prayer! God is listening and he wants us to come to him with our burdens, struggles and cares! He doesn't always give us the answer we want but this week I am so thankful His answer was yes and we found all our missing things!
"...the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." ~ James 5:16

Friday, June 10, 2011

A Time for the Potato Bag!

I don't know if "The Potato Bag" is it's official name but that's what I call it. This has proven to be such a time saver for me that I had to share it with you if you've never heard of this. I won this as a prize one Christmas during a game my family always plays. Just put 3-4 potatoes in this bag, stick it in the microwave for about 4-5 minutes and you have yourself  a few baked potatoes. I also use this to pre-cook my potatoes before making home fries and also before making my favorite summertime side...potatoes,carrots and onions wrapped in foil! If I was really crafty I would have made my own potato bag and shown you how to do it but I will leave that up to those of you who are much more talented than I am! Instead here's how to make my favorite summertime side:

For about 5-6 people cook 6 medium potatoes in your "potato bag" for about 3 mins. in the microwave. I also tried pre-cooking baby carrots in this bag and it worked, just reduce the time by about a minute and a half. I used about half of a large bag of baby carrots. Then cut up about 1-2 onions, don't cook. When your potatoes are cooked cut them into big cubes. Get some foil like you see in the photo and place half of all the veggies into one foil packet. Put some pats of butter (about half a stick) all over the veggies and cover with salt & pepper. Wrap your packet in about 3 layers of foil so the butter doesn't spill out when cooking on the grill. This will make 2 packets of veggies. I put them on the grill about 15 mins before the meat, and that way your veggies and meat should finish at about the same time. I make these ahead of time, stick them in the fridge then they're ready to go when you are. It's so tasty and so easy....even easier now that I have a potato bag!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

A Time to Plant

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and 
a time to pluck up that which is planted; ~ Ecc. 3:2

Before Planting

Broadcasting fertilizer
We finally have a garden! I have been wanting one ever since we moved into our house, tried the first year but the animals got everything and then had to convince my husband this was a good idea! Imagine me, not a farm girl, having to talk a former farm boy into planting a garden. An older gentlemen in our church has planted a garden behind the parsonage for several years now. After two knee replacements he decided last fall that he was done and asked us if we would like to "inherit" it. I was really surprised when Ben said yes and also so excited. Another man in our church came a few weeks ago and tilled it with his tractor and got it ready for us to begin planting.  The first day we planted it was just Ben and I. A friend watched the 3 younger ones for us so we could do it quicker while the older boys were in school. It took us about 5 hours to get 11 rows planted. We wanted to save a couple rows for when we could come back with all the kids and have them help. They all were really eager to help and it was really fun watching how each of them have such different personalities when it comes to work! We are all waiting in anticipation to see if anything will actually come up. We'll keep you posted!
Jena sat and watched so
patiently the whole time!

Owen planting pumpkins

Our garden fully planted
 Our garden contains the following:
1 full row of green beans; 2 full rows of peas; 4 full rows of corn; carrots; beets; black & red radishes; spinach; turnips; lettuce; 3 varieties of onions; cabbage; cauliflower; broccoli; potatoes, swiss chard; watermelon; pumpkin; 2 varieties of cucumber; acorn squash; butternut squash, and zucchini. I still need to go get some tomato plants to put in.

A Time to be Thrifty

There is treasure to be desired and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up. ~Prov. 21:20

A friend of mine has a blog where once a week she posts what she was able to get at the thrift store for $5. I love this because I love a good find at a thrift store or tag sale. One of the best finds we ever got at a thrift store was our LLBean kid carrier (the back pack kind) for $6 and it was in brand new condition. We still have it and use it! This past weekend Ben and I stopped at some yard sales and went to the thrift was a luxury for us to stop at yard sales because we were alone for the weekend and this is something that is NOT fun to do with all the kids. My best tag sale find this weekend was a brand new pair (never worn because her kid out grew them before he could wear them) of Nike sneakers that will fit Noah this fall for $5!! Pictured below is my $5 thrift store finds!

1. Rescue Hero (which we collect here, the boys love them!) $.10
2. Melissa & Doug Pirate's Bounty floor puzzle $1.99
3. Unfinished wooden tabletop bowling set from millstores (I thought it would be fun for the older boys to paint these on a rainy day) $1.00
4. Ripley's Believe It or Not Book (Noah loves these fun facts/informational-type books) $.10
5. A Yankee Candle topper (which matches things in my bedroom perfectly!) $.99
6. An old-school deck of cards the CU used to put out. I remember these cards from my grandparents house and these were new in the package so they come with a little nostalgia for me. $.50

Monday, June 6, 2011

A Time for Cake Stands

In Columbia Falls with Robin
& Tony
A couple of weeks ago we went up to Columbia Falls, ME to stay with some friends for the weekend. Robin is into antiques and her home is amazing. She took me out "antiquing" to some different places around their area and in talking she mentioned to me a craft making cake stands she and her grand-daughters do. I fell in love with the idea and decided to give it a try myself. As soon as we got home I went to the flea market down the road from our house to get some supplies.

I remembered this particular flea market has tables full of dishes and odds and ends all for $0.25 a piece. What you need are plates, any kind that you like. Then find candlestick holders or something similar for the base. I found what you see pictured. I tried to find plates that reminded me of someone to give it to them as a gift once it's made. To get started find a plate & base then you'll need a strong glue. I used amazing e-6000 that I found at Walmart for under $4. 

I chose this plate because it made me think of my aunt, Joyce, who now lives in GA. She entertains a lot and I thought this might be a fun piece for her to have to serve a desert of some sort. And if she ends up not liking it then it only cost me 50 cents to make!! 

Once you've made your selection make sure you wash the plate and base well and dry it before you begin. Take the glue and cover the rim (the area the candle would go in) of the candlestick holder with the glue. The tricky part is getting the base even on the plate so that it's centered. Apply light pressure to the candlestick once you've placed it on the plate for a few seconds to get the glue to hold. Leave it for a few hours before you try to pick it up. 

My finished product

What I love about this craft is you can be so creative as there are so many different kinds of plates and candlesticks. I love looking around flea markets so I'm really looking forward to the challenge of finding just the right base for just the right plate! If you decide to try this craft I would love to see your finished product!