Friday, March 30, 2012

Dreams -- not mine

A while back I was teaching Exodus to my classes in seminary and we decided to have some fun.  We were looking at the story of Joseph interpreting the dreams of Pharaoh, the butler and the baker. 

It seemed like a good idea to let the kids try to draw some of their impressions of the story.  Never underestimate the minds of 9th graders!!

Here are a few of their gems.

I think this is the butler returning to his job??  He looks more like a witch... and Pharaoh looks like a skeleton.

The baker loses his head after this dream.

Corn can look good and EVIL.  Guess who wins?

Fat and lean cows have much to say.

A different baker who still loses his head

I think this is another corn field

Successful butler.

More wicked, nasty corn.

Cows that are harder to see.

These youngsters are pretty creative and had a lot of fun with the project.  Now if they could just stop talking so much!!!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Let's Talk

Last night my regular reading of the Book of Mormon took me to the 12th chapter of the book of Helaman.  In some ways it is a dismal and depressing message because Nephi (3) is chastising his people for their lack of consistency when it came to following the Lord.

It is also sad because so much of what he says relates to the days in which we live.  See if this doesn’t ring a bell or two.

And thus we can behold how false, and also the unsteadiness of the hearts of the children of men; yea, we can see that the Lord in his great infinite goodness doth bless and prosper those who put their trust in him.
Yea, and we may see at the very time when he doth prosper his people, yea, in the increase of their fields, their flocks and their herds, and in gold, and in silver, and in all manner of precious things of every kind and art; sparing their lives, and delivering them out of the hands of their enemies; softening the hearts of their enemies that they should not declare wars against them ; yea, and in fine, doing all things for the welfare and happiness of his people; yea, then is the time that they do harden their hearts, and do forget the Lord their God, and do trample under their feet the Holy One – yea, and this because of their ease, and their exceedingly great prosperity.
Helaman 12:1-2)

I’m not a doom and gloom kind of guy but I do wonder what it will take to get us to come back to Christ as a nation.  We have a candidate for the Republican nomination that seems to be trying to get people to think about this possibility but I don’t know if he is sincere or just pandering to a particular group.

On the other hand, another candidate in the Republican group has said little about his beliefs because he is trying to avoid conflict.  Is he really committed to seeking to make our country better?  I think so and I have faith that his credentials show he will do his best.  Is he perfect?  No, but neither am I.

But what if we retain the same fellow that is in charge?  Will we continue down this road that leads to some pretty unsavory experiences?  It is my opinion that the vast majority of those who lead our country right now are inclined to continue the course we are following and if they remain in charge we will increase the rate of decline.

My personal hope is that there will be changes, not only in government, but in the way we live and relate to one another.  Unless that happens, the days of leisure, pleasure and good times are about to end and life will become much more difficult.

I’m not a prophet and do not offer this as a prophetic utterance except as it has been spoken by those who truly are prophetsWe have them, you know?  Maybe if we listen we can avoid some difficult days.  If not – well, I guess we get what we asked for don’t we?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Family Dinner/Birthday

Every month we get together with all the kids and their families for dinner and a project.

We try to rotate whose house hosts the happenings so we can do something at their place.

Sometimes the project is tilling a garden or maybe trimming roses.  We have even painted sheds and dug 'crypts' on occasion.

Other times, when no one has a project, we just do something fun..  

 March was one of those months.  Josh and Heather were hosting but they had no big project  (Thankfully, they have gotten rid of most of their roses).

 There's a nice park near where they live (Brian and Paula too) so we all gathered there and let the kids have fun.  

 After an hour or so of feeding ducks, throwing rocks in the lake and other "childish" things we let the little ones have some fun on the playground equipment.

We are really glad everyone lives so close -- and hope they keep it that way.

In case you didn't get the hint!!!


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Photos Finally

Some weeks ago I promised to post a few photos from the 50th Anniversary celebration we had for my folks.  They have finally been sent out so here is what it looked like for part of the time.

This is the happy Anniversary couple.  Doesn't Dad look happy?!!??!!

Dad has never been one to offer much in the way of hugs and stuff so this is a nice photo.  I know it gets him nervous but maybe with Mom he has gotten used to it.  Several of us make it a point to give him a hug -- because we love him -- but also because we like to see him squirm to get away when we encircle him with our arms.  It's High Entertainment for all present.  Thanks Dad for the good times.

My niece, Jennifer, was successful getting Dad to smile ---- sort of --- whatever she did must have been really good cause Mom seems to have lost it.  Way to go Jen.
These are the surviving children of Rex and Catherine Whitmer.  Sort of a motley crew, especially that front row group (not Mom and Dad-- but the rest of us).  At least we all cleaned up well and seemed to be having fun.  Someone said David (1st on left) and Jim (2nd from right) look the most alike.  I think all the ones on the back row look similar so I guess that leaves Rex III (also known as "little Rex or Rexie") (all the way right) and me (2nd from left) as the outcasts.  We do have one other brother but he is waiting for us in the Spirit World.  Kinda wish we could have known him more here but it will be a sweet reunion when we get there.

Teresa and I were the only ones from our part of the family to make it down for the celebration.  I'm almost smiling -- must have inherited that from Dad.  What you can't see is that Teresa is pinching me SEVERELY in an effort to get some reaction.  That's probably about all she can get from an old duffer like me.  :-)
And this is the whole group that was down for the event.  Lots of heritage for a couple of normal folk like my Mom and Dad.  We sure loved being there and hope they enjoyed the time we had with them.  

Only a few more years and Teresa and I will have a similar party with our kids.  I better not be drooling on myself by then!!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Crypt View

Well, it's finally time to consider the project complete.  You know, the one that has been interminable in its duration.  Yes folks, the "Crypt" has been completed.

See the nice solid, shiny floor of concrete.
Thanks Jennie's family for the help.

We are so happy to be done and finally have a place to put all our food storage and stuff.  Come on by and we will give you a little tour (cause it's only a little space).

This is the view from the door.

This is the view from the other side of the room.  Cool eh!!??

Now, I wonder what will be next on our list of things to do???