Saturday, May 12, 2012

Coming into his own

All of the sudden, Joe whizzes past me on his bicycle, and he stays in the lead the rest of the way home, a dramatic change from all of our other bike rides where Drew and I were always looking over our shoulders to make sure Joe is still there.
Little by little Joe is emerging from his brother's shadow.

He can read now, and every night he reads us a few pages from a beginning readers Bible. But he's not really to the point yet where he reads for fun.

Plants vs. Zombies. It is all the rage in our house. Drew bought the game back in January, but it is just now reaching a fever pitch. The boys talk strategies over peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Family members wait like people in an unemployment line for their turn to protect our home from zombies.
And so I found myself during a similar PB&J power meeting extolling the virtues of a board game over an iPod game.
"People fill the moments during other players turns joking, laughing, and getting to know one another." I said.
"Yeah," Joe agrees, "but you can't play a board game on the toilet."
Touché, Joe. What could I say to that?

Last year we said that Jethro was our mango eater, and it is true. He loves a mango. Plus he looks so cute with bright orange mango juice finger-painted from nape to navel.
But we've got to give Joe his due. I don't remember a time Joe turned down a mango. We used to fix them for him until he started consuming more than we were willing to cut up each day. Then he started tearing into them with his teeth. But at the advent of this mango season he has taken to cutting them up himself. I love seeing him headed out the door, mango in one hand sterling blade in the other, with a contented glint of determination in his eye like a skillful hunter striding into the woods.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

I am so proud of this boy.
You know, he doesn't really love any one thing. Drew has got his games. Harley has dolls and clothes. Zech's got... anything that will sit still long enough for him to eat it. But Joe, Joe is just a contented boy. He plays games with Drew. He plays dolls (though he wouldn't call it that) with Harley, and he does a great job of taking care of Jethro when we need him to.

Joe is really a brave boy too. He likes a physical challenge. A new thing he is adding to his repertoire is his enjoyment of a mental challenge. He used to 'lock up' when he was put on the spot to answer a question. But he is really excelling in school and at home schooling. He doesn't enjoy local school, but he enjoys school with his mom. I am proud of the hard worker that Joe is.

Joe has become a good swimmer. We haven't been around pools much. So our kids haven't had a lot of opportunities to swim, but this time, Joe took to it like the proverbial fish. He gets a little scared trying new things, but he has amazing self control to not let any fear control how he reacts.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Brotherly Love...

Loving on Zach and reading to him...

Goofing off and teasing Harley...

Joe is the kind of brother you would want. He is willing to help, he wants to protect and he loves his siblings. Of course there are also the times he pushes their buttons incessantly and teases them without end... but he is growing into a sweetheart!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Learning French
When Joe first saw this shirt he looked at it a bit confused. He knew it came from the USA but asked, why is it in french? We looked at the shirt and looked at him and said... 'uh what?' He said, 'yea, it says deux mille dix'. He hears that at school every day. It is not 2010 it is deux mille dix.
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Friday, October 2, 2009

Joe's Question Reveals a Heart for Christ

Yesterday I was talking to Drew and our family about what we want to do when we get to Mali. As the conversation was about to move on, Joe said, "Dad, I have a question."
"When you start being a missionary in Mali and tell someone about Jesus and they become a Christian, could they become a missionary too and tell other people about Jesus?"
Simplicity does not negate profundity. It clarifies it so that we can probe even greater depths.

Psalm 8

O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory above the heavens.

From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise because of your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Pappy and I were talking about Blacky. He is a big black bird. He's going to Michigan. Blacky is not real, but he's at Alum Rock park because there's a big bird there. And I play on it. I was in Pappy's truck, and he was driving me somewhere and he told me a story about Blacky. Blacky is my favorite story that Pappy tells. Pappy tells me different stories to me.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Where in the World?

This morning,
I asked Joe how we should decide which town or city we should live in when we move to Mali.
He said, "We should take a pool with us."
(Not really what I hoped for,) I said, "Well if we can take a pool with us, then we can go to any city."
Joe thought, "We should get a house close to a lot of other houses so we don't have to walk very far."
"Good thinking." I said.
"We should live close to a well." He continued. "Everybody's got to come to the well, and we could pray for rain for Africa."
I didn't know Joe knew what a well was. It sounds like he heard about it at church. It's interesting what things the kids pick up. Joe is really in to praying for rain. That makes a lot of sense to him. I think he's more into solving human needs than Drew is. Maybe Joe is more like his mom that way, and Drew's more like me.
Time will tell.
I asked Drew the same question yesterday. Check out his blog.
(Written by Jeff)