Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Elaine Turns Seven!

Almost two weeks ago, my Elaine girl turn seven.  S-E-V-E-N.  Wow.  That makes me feel old!  Assuming she lives with us through college, that means we are about 1/3 done with our time with Elaine!  That is scary… I feel like there is yet so much to teach!

Elaine is really a great big sister.  She is a helper and a teacher and an example, to Mommy and her siblings.  She is nearly always happy.  If she isn’t busy and involved with her brothers and sister, she is probably curled up with a book somewhere.  I used to be like that.  My Grandma was always getting on me for bringing a book everywhere.  Elaine brings three or four!

I snapped a few pictures on the morning of her birthday.

Elaine's 7 Year Portraits

Elaine's 7 Year Portraits

Elaine's 7 Year Portraits
This was one of the few moments during our three weeks in Vancouver, BC that it wasn’t raining!

Elaine's 7 Year Portraits

Elaine's Seven Year Old Portraits
Finally got her to smile!

Elaine picked out her outfit for her birthday.  She loves purple, so the dress choice was easy.  The shirt is one that she bought with Ben on a daddy-daughter date, and it is one of her favorites for that reason.  She has been dying for cowgirl boots for a while now, and we finally found some at the thrift store recently.  So that is her outfit!  She looks so much more grownup with her bangs growing out, too!

What to do was a little more difficult to decide!  We had shared birthday cake with Makaela Little the week before, on Makaela’s 8th birthday.  They came over for dinner on Elaine’s birthday.  So, we did our “normal” celebrations in the morning, in our PJs.

Elaine's 7th Birthday
Breakfast cereal tradition – She chose Cheerios!!!

Elaine's 7th Birthday
Part of her presents.  They have come in a trickle this year, and more are waiting at Grandma’s house!  She got a new set for her Schleich horses!

Elaine's 7th Birthday
Love this picture of my kiddos!

Elaine's 7th Birthday
Giant “7” balloon from the Littles!  Homemade decorations were a family project the night before.

After that, we decided for a little city adventure.  We planned to take the train downtown and eat lunch at a food truck I had seen – Mom’s Grilled Cheese Truck.  Never having seen a grilled cheese food truck, and since grilled cheese is Elaine’s favorite, we thought it would be fun!  I discovered the flaw in my plan quickly – my transit directions were by bus, not train.  And to take bus to train involved double fares, and I didn’t have that much Canadian cash.  So in the end we drove downtown, ate our food truck fare, and then rode the train back to the transfer station where Daddy picked us up.  {The train involved a scary moment when Liberty exited a stop early and I didn’t notice.  Praise the Lord, the older gentleman behind me hollered and I got her back just in time!}

Elaine's 7th Birthday

Elaine's 7th Birthday

Elaine's 7th Birthday

Elaine's 7th Birthday

Elaine's 7th Birthday
So very glad these two are friends!  Makaela’s brought headband crowns from the ladies’ tea, and the girls enjoyed playing together!

Elaine's 7th Birthday
Cutting pineapple for her new favorite pizza – ham & pineapple!  (Glad we expanded our tastebuds from Cheese!”")

Elaine's 7th Birthday

HYHN5448
Cake on Makaela’s birthday.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Some Thoughts on Halloween

This post has been brewing for a couple of years now.  I guess I’m finally brave enough to voice my thoughts.  But I have been censored and edited by my husband, who is much gentler and more forgiving than I. Smile

Through many of the recent posts floating around Facebook and Instagram (my favorite social network these days), it has become apparent to me that the celebration of Halloween is no longer taboo for many of my Bible believing friends.  I am personally very disturbed by this.

Why is it that a holiday which is so evidently associated with evil has become something which Christians feel they can or have to participate in?  Why should we even celebrate it in an alternative manner?

These verses are continually coming to mind:

Ephesians 5:11 – “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

2 Corinthians 6:14b-15 “…for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness?  and what communion hath light with darkness?  And what concord hath Christ with Belial?  or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?”

1 Thessalonians 5:22 “Abstain from all appearance of evil.”

Whereas I understand that there is nothing wrong with dressing up as a princess or a pumpkin, I don’t understand why we would choose to partake in a day which has always been everything opposite of our holy God.  Can’t we dress up any time?  My kids love to play dress-up and role play nearly daily. 

Should we not take this opportunity to stand in stark contrast to the culture around us?  What a golden opportunity to show the difference between believers who have had their lives and purposes and even celebrations changed by Christ, and those who are still in bondage to darkness.  Instead we are blurring the lines between the holy and the profane.  This is a new trend.  Didn’t our parents and grandparents have a good reason for teaching us not to participate in this day?

Many try to seize upon this day as an opportunity for evangelism.  I appreciate their desire to reach souls for Christ, but I feel as though the ends do not justify the means in this situation.  Are we as zealous to use other opportunities to hand out tracts and share Christ throughout the year?  Or do we use this as an excuse to participate in Halloween?  Many “churches” would claim that a certain kind of music provides an opportunity for evangelism, and yet we would say that this music does not mix with the message of the Gospel.  Is not Halloween the same?

I have not said anything the last few years, though I always am vexed when I scroll through my newsfeed at this time of year.  Each year it seems to be getting worse, as more and more of my friends get involved.  I did not feel I could remain silent any longer.

Feel free to share comments and thoughts, but please keep it civil.  I also feel very alone in my position, so I would really like to know if there are some of you that stand with me.