Monday, June 28, 2010

Top 10 things I’ll miss about Canada.

10. Gravy on your fries.
9. Ice Capps from Tim Hortons especially in the summer!
8. Crabby Joes - Kids eat free on Sundays.
7. Niagara Falls – it’s like the Pigeon Forge of the North.
6. Canada’s Worst Handyman – a Canada Discovery Channel show. Makes me feel better about my own skills
5. Moose Winooski’s! Pie in the face and moose helmet on your birthday. Sweet.
4. Really cheap cookies and fabric softener.
3. Learning French on the back of food cartons and labels.
2. The toonie and the loonie. How nice is it to get the change out of your ashtray and realize you have like $20!
1. Timbits!!!

Of course the real number one thing we will miss is the great people we have met and Forward Church and its staff and members! God bless.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

My book - Imagine - Creating Memorable Characters for Kids' Church, is finally available for purchase!

You can get it (click here) or at Barnes and (click here)

I hope you order it and enjoy it!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Lots-o'-Huggin' Bear Commercial (circa 1983)

hilarious that they made a fake commercial!!

Toy Story Legacy

Isn't it funny how some movies become a part of the fabric of a culture, a family or a person. Movies like Star Wars and Indiana Jones have become that for our family. Yesterday, as we watched Toy Story 3, I was also reminded of how the Toy Story movies have woven a trail of memories through the tapestry of our family history. We love all the Pixar movies, even Ratatouille, but the Toy Story series holds a unique sway over our families sub-consciousness.

How so?
Well where to begin? Toy Story came out the year we were married. I remember watching it and thinking how great it would be to have a little boy to play cowboys and space man with. If I only knew!! I even welled up a little on this movie (but I did not full out cry). Andy reminded me of myself as a kid. Not every kid has an imagination to take a toy or two and create a whole story , or even a whole universe, from it. I did this sort of thing all the time. Three out of our five sons have had (or still do have) this sort of well-developed imagination. The other two have been greatly influenced by the "imaginative three".

Next came Toy Story 2.
This was Tanner's first real movie at a theater (not including falling asleep in the drive-in to Star Wars the Phantom Menace). He was enraptured through the whole thing.

In 2001 Blake and Tanner dressed as Buzz and Woody for Halloween. Some remnants of those costumes still remain in the "dress up bin", and Chase can be seen almost daily in Woody's hat, although it is a bit chewed up. Several TS phrases have been a regular part of our family's lingo, such as "Buzz, Buzz, Buzz Light year to rescue!" , "You are a toy!", "You can't rush art". Now Chase, who has a penchant for mixing up words, has added another - "Empeder Zurb." I can't forget about the several WDW pictures with Buzz Lightyear himself~


So as I sat watching Toy Story 3 yesterday, keeping in mind my oldest is a few weeks away from 13, I couldn't help crying like a baby. For me I felt like our family has grown up with Andy, like he was one of our kids, and he was saying goodbye to his childhood. Blake is right on the heels of Andy, and Tanner not far behind him. This movie captured the fleeting nature of childhood in such a unique way, through the eyes of a boy's childhood toys. When Andy let the little girl have all his toys, but could barely part with Woody, well it still makes me weepy. I guess this just shows me that no matter how old I get, there will always be a part of me that is a little boy.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Aunt Connie

In memory of my Aunt Connie who passed away last Saturday. She was a wonderful aunt who, as my mom put it, had a heart of gold. She was always giving and looking out for others. We will never forget how she cared so much for my mom in her last days! Our boys will always remember her as "Grandma Connie" with her cool bird Bob! We look forward to seeing her again one in Heaven! She had a strong faith in Christ.
This is her obituary from the Rockford Register Star:

CONNIE SUE MARCH, 57 LOVING DAUGHTER, MOTHER, SISTER, GRANDMOTHER, AUNT AND FRIEND LOVES PARK - Connie Sue March, 57, went home to be with the Lord at 11:02 a.m. Saturday, June 12, 2010, in Loves Park. Born Dec. 30, 1952, in Rockford, the daughter of Chester and Berniece March. Connie enjoyed fishing and spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren. Connie was a very generous and compassionate person, she didn't know a stranger. She was the one to call if you needed a bumper wired up, boxes delivered to school for packing or a rabbit hutch built. She was the rescuer and will be dearly missed. Connie was employed by Corporate Services which she loved dearly. Survived by mother, Berniece March; daughters, Lori (Rob) Romero, Lisa (Keith) Eggleston and Shandra (Jim) Ankar; brothers, Steve (Linda) March and Kevin March; grandchildren, Bobby and Jayden Romero and Annabelle Olson; daughters in kind and spirit, Rebekah Biles and Latisha Bryant; several foster grandchildren; and many nieces, nephews, cousins and dear friends. Predeceased by father, Chester March; sisters, Sharon Stohl and Donna Martin; and grandson, Nathaniel Romero. Service at 2 p.m. Saturday, June 19, in Honquest Family Funeral Home, Rockford Chapel, 4311 N. Mulford Road, with visitation from 11 a.m. to time of service.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Brendan is officially a Martin!

What a journey it has been. Two and half years ago I received a call from Roanoke County Social Services that they had a little boy they wanted to place with us! Keep in mind they had already placed two other little boys with us. My first reaction was "are you crazy?", but something stuck in my gut. As soon as we met him, we knew we had to give this little guy a place to stay. Brendan came to live with us the first time on February 8, 2008.

At that time my sister Becky and her husband Joe were considering adopting. When it looked like Brendan was going to come up for adoption, we all prayed and felt like maybe God was leading the Moberlys to adopt him. But then some family members of Brendan stepped forward and were willing to adopt Brendan. This was a mixture of sadness and happiness for our family. The Moberlys also had to grow in God's sufficient grace for that moment! In April of 2009 Brendan left our family to go and live with his biological mother's cousin and her family in the Midwest. This was a sad moment for us, but once again we had a peace and were thankful to be part of Brendan's life if only for a short time.

As time progressed with his new family, it became more and more apparent that Brendan was not adjusting well to the new situation. He was almost out of control and seemed to long for the one family he considered his own, us. We stayed in contact with his new family, hoping to give them some insight into how they could help Brendan adjust. It soon became apparent however that he was not going to adjust. At this point we had moved to Canada. We didn't know if it could be done, but we felt since Brendan had bonded with us so strongly, we were his best chance to have a stable and solid childhood and a loving family. We opened our home to him to come back and live with us as his forever family. About this time my sister Becky found out she was pregnant with her fourth child, proving once again in this story that God gives and takes away, blessed be His name!

So after some amazing work done by both the Roanoke County Social Services and the Waterloo Region Social Services in Canada, they brought Brendan up to Ontario to be reunited with us on October 17th of last year. After months of visitations and paper work, today we got the email from our social worker that Brendan Dayne is now a Martin and will forever be a treasured member of our family. Another Gotcha Day in our home!

You can follow this story about clicking on the links in this post to various other blog posts that fall in the timeline.