Saturday, October 22, 2011

Worth a 1,000...

I would like to take a moment and give a shout-out to The Hersey Company for making Jolly Rancher chews and packaging them in the "big" bag.  They are my weakness for sure, so addicting.  I have almost gone through an entire bag while watching the Rangers play in game 3 of the World Series.  Not the best game for my Rangers but we wont talk about that.

Last night, on the insistence and planing of my wonderful husband, I enjoyed a night out with no kids and no husband.  There sure aren't many of those nights around here.  It was quite refreshing to come home after seeing a movie and find my kids in bed asleep...and I didn't have to put them there!!

Today after Zach finished his work day at the Wesley we packed the kids in the car and drove up the hill to take some family photos.  We had our pictures taken professionally when Zoe was about 5 months old.  The pictures were cute but the bill was ridiculous.  We decided then that we could take our own pictures and save the money for something more important (like rent and food).  So, that's what we did today.  We grabbed a tripod and the camera and headed out.  Noah had just woken up from a nap so he was not feeling generous with his time or space.  He much preferred to walk around and explore the terrain.  I wasn't able to get a good photo of the kids together but I can save that photo shoot for some day when Zach's at work.

Below I will attach a few of my favorites.

Our crazy family photo

I haven't had an opportunity to work with and edit the pictures yet.  That will be for another day.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Insanity is genetic, right?

Thursdays are typically the only day of the week that I am home alone with both kids.  The rest of the week Zoe goes to work with Zach and then to school in the afternoon.  On Thursdays, as soon as Noah goes down for his nap, I try to do something with Zoe, be it school work or a game.  Today I decided to try for an art project.  For full details of my project feel free to cruise on over to my craft blog :  Otherwise, here's a picture of Zoe painting:

There are moments when my kids do or say something so out there I wonder where they got their cookyness...then I remember....

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Let's agree to disagree...

Many of my blog posts take shape in my mind while laying in bed unable to sleep.  I get a thought, think "I should blog about this" and proceed to "write" the blog in my mind, further prolonging sleep.  Isn't it amazing, that even when we realize that what we are doing is stupid, we continue to do it?

Last night I was thinking about a conversation we had with some friends a while back.  We were talking about birthdays for our children and I made the comment, somewhat out of jest, that Zach and I are all about setting the bar very low.  Meaning, if my kids aren't used to ever getting anything nice, they wont ever come to expect it.  Now, even though that comment was made jokingly, it still rings true.  It's no surprise that we don't have a lot of money.  I mean Zach works in ministry and I am a stay-at-home mom.  We love what we do.  I love staying home with my children and having the flexibility to do different things.  The flip side is we live on a very limited budget.  We think it is worth it, others may disagree.

Years working with teenagers have proven to me that so many kids these days are terribly over indulged.  They are given whatever they want and are constantly going and doing.  As a result, many of these kids are impressed by nothing.  We found when planning Youth trips and activities that many of our suggestions were met with disdain because how could an inexpensive weekend trip to the lake compete with tv, xbox, extravagant trips, etc.

Since we do not have the funds to plan expensive trips or meals out we have had to be a little more creative when finding things to do as a family.  We have found it is not too difficult to spend a Saturday enjoying our family and not have to spend much, if any, money.  I hope that this is also teaching my children to appreciate the little things.

I find it somewhat disturbing though to realize that few share my ideas on this topic.  Many parents are under the impression that to be the best parent, they need to provide their children with all the things they missed out on as a child.  Now, let's be clear, I love my children and I want them to be happy.  I want to be able to take my children places and create loving memories with them.  I struggle ever year with what to give my kids for Christmas and their birthdays and would love it if money weren't an issue.  However, I do not honestly think that they are suffering because they will never have a bouncy house at their birthdays.  I hope instead, that they can look back, thumb through the scrapbooks I lovingly keep, and know that they were loved.  Know that their parents made a lot of effort to spend loving time with them.  And to know, that while we never had a lot of money like other families, that they did have their parents there with them.  There is nothing wrong in working hard and providing for your children, but for many, the money and possessions seems to take the place of parenting.  The idea to provide the best in material wealth vs. the idea to spend time together.

I am reminded of a quote I heard on the Today Show interview with reality tv star, Kate Gosselin, when asked about doing something outside the realm of the public eye :

"Well, it's a situation where Jon may be accepting of mediocre for his kids and working a regular job. I want the best for my kids and the best opportunities not unlike every parent," Kate said during a Monday morning appearance on NBC's Today show.  "I think that to be a good parent is to work as hard as you can and give them the best opportunities in life, and this has provided that." 

Let's just leave it at I disagree.

On more Bechtold news, yesterday Zoe had her well-visit with our wonderful new pediatrician.  Zoe is in the 95% in height and 50% in weight.  She's a tall girl!  She also got her shots and was so good and brave, Zach and I were both so proud of her.  Noah starts going to daycare one half-day a week beginning this Wednesday.  I am excited for him.  I believe that there is a definite benefit for a young child to be in daycare around other kids.  They seem to learn so much more.

Work for both of us is going great.  We are coming down off a busy weekend for Zach so he took a mental health day yesterday.  We just relaxed, caught up on some tv that we were weeks behind on, and got take-out chinese.  

I have been watching tons of baseball (just another benefit of being home during the day ;) ).  I am so excited about the World Series.  I like the Cardinals but they don't hold a candle to my Rangers.  

Thank you friends and family for enduring my ramblings... Love to all!

Monday, October 3, 2011


Presently I am sitting in my chair, watching House Hunters, sipping coffee and writing while Noah naps and the dog chews a giant bone outside in the back yard.  Pretty blissful I must say.  I'm still feeling a little groggy from our weekend trip back to Plainview.  We really enjoyed our time with family but sleep was definitely not on the agenda.

Last night marked the beginning of Sunday night youth meetings with my group from Morning Star.  We saw 4 new faces! It was a good night and I am very excited for things to come.  I was also able to make it over to Wesley in time to listen to Zach preach.  He preaches every Sunday night but this is the first time I have attended.  The kids were with Zach while I was at youth.  Those two have those college kids wrapped around their little fingers.

Listening to Zach's sermon and considering other things happening around us, I have found myself dwelling on certain aspects of church leadership.  As Zach put it last night, leading, in any fashion, in the church gives you an incredible amount of responsibility.   We must be careful, in all that we say, to not lead anyone astray.  For so many, especially in youth, those meeting on Wednesdays and Sundays are the only time some kids hear anything about the Lord.   So many places in the bible warn against false prophets (Matthew 7, 1 Timothy 4, Hebrews 13, etc) and you do not have to look far to see false prophets among us today (see Harold Camping).
He so crazy...

Recently, Zach has gotten into the habit of listening to talk radio, specifically, Christian talk radio, and yesterday on our way home we listened to quite a few different stations.  Some stations were good and gave good information.  Others, however, made us just shake our head in amazement.  Amazement that there are people out there that will believe what someone says just because they write a book and claim to use the Bible as a reference.  This got me thinking about my job and other's who do the same thing Zach and I do.  It's a sad fact that so many churches hire people to teach their youth and children without checking first what their beliefs are and following up on what they teach.  It's also sad that so many parents trust the religious upbringing of their children to the church, and the humans the church has hired, without being aware of what is actually being taught.  Even in my own experience, so few parents thought to ask questions pertaining to what I and others I worked with were teaching their children about Christ.  Scary!  Now, I hope and pray that I will never lead a single person astray and I will continue to pray daily for wisdom and discernment.  I do hope that people will not take everything they are told by a supposed "teacher of the Word" at face value.  A true sign of a "cult" or "false prophet" is that asking questions about what you are hearing is discouraged.

So, I guess, through these rantings, I'm beseeching each of you to question, to discern, to search out answers to your questions, and not lean on the teachings of one person.  Also, I know for sure I'm going to be paying close attention to who is teaching my children and what they are being taught.  As a teacher and a leader I pray never to become complacent with my great responsibility.

As a final note on this matter I look to James, Chapter 3.  It reminds us "that we who teach will be judged more strictly." We never stop teaching, even if it's our day off...