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How To Be A Good Friend

Earlier this week, one of my favorite students and soccer players this year was struck and killed by a red-light runner as she was crossing a busy street on her bike. As soon as I read an email from work about the incident, I looked at the photos I took last fall during soccer. She also wrote a really great article for our school's newspaper, of which I am the advisor. Megan was getting ready to start high school and I hoped she would continue playing soccer and maybe even join the school newspaper.

How To Be A Good Friend (direct link to her article or you can read it below)

This photo from October during a practice is probably my favorite photo of her. Megan was always smiling and it was infectious. It makes me smile still.



Grandma Likes Trains

Tonight, Grandma Elsie stopped over with Susan and we had fun playing trains and swimming. Grandma got to watch Lukas and Skyler swim back and forth across the pool, while Renea and Susan worked on school assignments.


Launch Party

This afternoon, we had some friends and their children over for a swim party. When my aunt and uncle brought Lukas over, I came out of my nap/movie/study mode. While Renea and my aunt Susan worked on some online college class stuff, Chris and I took the boys swimming. Skyler had a blast being launched into the air.

Check out the photos.


Proverbs 3:27

Last Sunday, there was a pastoral candidate at our chuch who gave a very thought-provoking sermon. Derik Hines spoke on Proverbs 3:27 and I've been thinking about it all week.

"Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act."

That verse has prompted me to open up my bible for the first time in many, many months. I am now going to keep it on my office desk. The verse is about encouraging us to help others, but only if they deserve it and if we think about our own situation, too. I shouldn't offer assistance to someone who clearly doesn't need it. That is something I often find in my teaching. Students will ask for help and I first see if they actually need it or if I can just point them in the right direction. Also, I need to remember that I can't do everything. For example, if I see a homeless man on the street, I can't realistically go up to him and offer to take him in and let him live with my family for a few months. That's not in my power to do.

A few weeks ago, Renea and I took on a second sponsored child in Africa after a very powerful church service from Tom Eggum. founder of Hope 4 Kids International.


Here is Kevin (Ndirangu) from Kenya, age 11, and our newest. Mukisa from Uganda, age 5.

Flagstaff BBQ

It was time for the Chili Cook-off again in Flagstaff! My dad met Skyler and I at our house and we drove up in the convertible to the event. Skyler loved watching the trains go by and playing in the dirt. All three of us got a little sunburned from being outside and riding with the top down. Next time we need to put on sunblock!

Skyler really enjoyed his M&M cookie while wearing his matching M&M shirt and hat. He carefully ate the M&Ms first, before eating the rest of the cookie.





Skyler Swims Across The Pool!

Skyler amazingly showed us how he can swim across the pool and back. He just turned 4! His Saturday morning swim lessons have really paid off and I am very proud of his abilities.

Watch the video here!

Birthday Celebrations

More birthday fun! We went to our friends', The Greskos, and celebrated three birthday parties! I took these photos, documenting Skyler's decent into grumpiness after a long day of having fun. He enjoyed holding the hamster and playing with the twins.



Swimming and Ice Cream With Amelia

Skyler and his young friend, Amelia, went swimming and shared ice cream. Their parents also enjoyed playing Wii. Earlier in the afternoon, I heated the pool for a couple of hours and it eventually reached over 90 degrees. It's been so unseasonably cool lately, so the water was initially too cold for the wimpy adults.




Celebrate With The Good Stuff

Today, we had a little celebration for Renea's birthday. Skyler, Josh, and I shared with her a tiny cheesecake. The drink on the left was not for Skyler!

Finally Released!

My dad didn't get released from prison (his new job), but today he did get released from Scottsdale Healthcare Shea. He has been in there for almost a week, due to an infection in his right leg and foot. I have a similar dry skin problem, but I'm not worried. My dad complained about the food and the boredom. This morning I picked up his post office box mail and a textbook for him. While I was in the hospital, the neighbor stopped by and updated us on their son's appendix surgery. People need to remain healthy and out of the hospital.

New Floors and Old England

Today, Renea dragged Skyler and I to IKEA, which is about the same number in miles that are country is getting as stimulus dollars. We bought the largest bookshelf they had and a ton of wicker baskets to put in it.

Last week, with the help of our friend, Michael, we put in laminate flooring in three rooms, including my office. It is my safe haven that I go to whenever Renea asks me to do something. Well, she asked me to put in flooring. Drats! Foiled again!

We also got to see some friends from England that were staying with my parents. Maybe they will invite us to visit someday soon, since Renea and Skyler just submitted their passport paperwork!

Check out the photos.

Train Park

Last evening, we spent a few hours at the McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park in Scottsdale. Skyler loved riding the trains with his cousin Lukas. There was a fun band that played popular pop/rock/dance hits, The Groove Merchants. Grandma Elsie got to join us, too. Everyone had a good time hanging out and dancing in the nice summer breeze.

Check out the photos.


Skyler is holding his snake that Grandma Carrie got for him...
after an emotional day of not having it.