Archive for November, 2009

To celebrate Thanksgiving, I would like to repost a video that I put together a few years ago to express my thankgiving to God for all of His goodness. The pictures are not current, but the sentiment is.

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Mailorder Madness

I have had such problems ordering off of the internet lately! I do most of my Christmas/Birthday shopping online because we live in a small, rural town that has limited shopping resources. This time of year, I spend a lot of time gift shopping because we have three birthdays and Christmas all within a two month period!

Normally, I have found online shopping a pleasant experience. Anything I want I can find somewhere, and what can be handier than having my gifts delivered to my door?! It sure is easier than trying to find a time when I can go shopping by myself–that never happens! In the last few weeks, though, I have had THREE interesting experiences.

My first problem came with a gift for Kara’s birthday. I had ordered her a Wii game that is not available locally. I even paid extra shipping to receive it on time. I was so relieved when the envelope came in the mail that I just immediately took it to my present hiding place to be wrapped in a couple of days. Almost as a second thought, I decided to open the envelope to take a look at the game’s cover. Boy, am I glad I did! Not only was it the wrong game, it wasn’t even for the Wii!!! So, I had to do some quick maneuvering to get a different game for a gift.

Well, that was frustrating. But just a few days later I ordered prints of my kids’ school pictures online. Oh, I hate doing that! Trying to get all of the different sizes cropped appropriately is so confusing! When that package came in the mail I opened it immediately to see if I had gotten the cropping right. What a surprise I found! The pictures were not of my kids! They were pictures of complete strangers! So, again I had to go through the hassle of getting the mistake corrected.

My latest shopping has been for Cosette’s birthday that is coming up on December 6. I found her main gift online–an expensive gift that I can’t specify right now in case she reads this blog! 😉 It came on Friday, and I opened the shipping box and was pleased with the item’s box inside. Again, almost as a second thought, I decided to open up the item’s box to take a sneak peek at the neat present. Again, it was a good thing I did because the box was EMPTY! Yes, that’s right! There was nothing in the box! Just imagine the look on Cosette’s face if I had wrapped it up and given it to her as her main birthday gift! An empty box!! So, again I have gone through the hassle of getting the problem corrected, and hopefully, I will receive the replacement on time for her birthday.

So, I guess my lesson to learn from all of this is to ORDER EARLY and DOUBLE CHECK EVERYTHING. Hopefully, the rest of my Christmas shopping will go more smoothly!

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Learning About the Flag

Luke has a tremendous Wolf Scout leader.  She has great ideas and organizes such nice events for the boys in her group.

This week she had three local veterans come to our meeting to teach the boys about the flag’s history and etiquette.  We were blessed to have these three men share with us.  One was a Vietnam veteran, and the other two were Gulf War veterans.  They did a fantastic job telling all about the flag and what it stands for.  The boys sat in rapt attention as they told about the proper ways to display and honor the flag.  Then they demonstrated the proper folding method, and had each of the kids try on their own.  At the end, they even brought little flag pins so the kids could remember our special evening.

I cannot begin to explain what a great event this was.  It is so important to pass the love of freedom on to our kids, and this meeting helped to do that.  Thank you, brave American soldiers.  We honor you all!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Heros Share the Flag
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Scooping Snow


We have been getting a very pretty snow today.  Just a little bit ago, I looked out the window and saw Cosette out scooping our driveway.  She had taken the initiative to do this without being asked, and she was doing a good job too!  What a sweetie!

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Yes, the Prairie Family had yet another birthday this week!  Kara turned 6 years old on Sunday.  She had a very special day!

A special friend’s mother remembered the occasion and brought cupcakes to Sunday School to celebrate Kara’s birthday–that was a sweet and thoughtful surprise!  Then the pastor announced that it was her birthday, and the whole congregation sang Happy Birthday!  That definitely made Kara’s face light up!

We did our usual celebration of birthday presents and cake.  Kara had found a picture of a cake in a library book many months ago that she liked and asked my Mom to make for her birthday.  My mom did a great job, and Kara’s princess cake turned out just right!

Like all of the rest of us, Kara enjoys electronics and computers, and her gifts all reflect that.  She got a new game for our DS, a new Webkinz, a Dora Links doll, and a Crayola kit.  The Dora Links doll is really unique.  It hooks up to a computer and has a game that goes with it.  The game actually changes the looks of the real doll.  For example, changing the color of the eyes on the computer changes the eye color on the doll.  It took all afternoon to get the game to download, but once it did, it worked fine.  I was a bit disappointed, though, to find out that most of the activities are locked until additional playsets are purchased.  I should have figured….

The Crayola Color Explosion Glow Dome kit has been a favorite.  It involves tracing images onto a plastic dome that lights up and spins to “animate” the drawing.  I saw it at Wal-Mart and thought it looked like something Kara would like, but I had problems finding any videos that shows what it actually does, so I made such a video in case anyone else is trying to decide on gifts:

It really is pretty cool, and there are more patterns to download off of the internet.

We finished up Kara’s birthday celebration by letting her choose a place to go out to eat.  She always picks China Buffet, and we don’t complain!  😉

This time of year Kara’s birth parents always come to my mind.  I wonder if they think about Kara and wonder where she is and what she is like.  I would love to be able to tell them what a happy, lovely girl she is!  We are so thankful to have her in our family.  I pray that God will somehow reach out to them to draw them to eternal salvation.  Then they too can be part of Kara’s eternal forever family.

Here are my three thoughts about my beautiful girl:

1. Kara is such a happy girl!  Even the door greeters at Wal-Mart call her “the girl who smiles all of the time!”  She lights up the room everywhere she goes.

2. Kara tries her very hardest.  She doesn’t do things half-heartedly.

3. Kara loves Jesus.  She speaks lovingly about Him every day.  She says that He forgave her sins and became her Savior one day during Sunday School, and for that I am so grateful.  It is truly a blessing to see her growing in her Lord.

Happy birthday, Kara Joy Mincui!  You are truly a delight and a blessing to our family.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Kara's 6th Birthday
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In yesterday’s post about Brock’s birthday, I wrote that we all had an unplanned surprise for his special day!  Well, here it is:  meet our newest guinea pig, Chip!

Now for the story:  We got our first two guinea pigs back in May as part of John’s pets merit badge requirements for Boy Scouts.  Dan brought them home from a pet store that assured us that both of them were females from the same litter.  Weeks and then months went by, and the pigs settled into their new home, and since no baby pigs appeared, we assumed that the pet shop was right and enjoyed our girl guinea pigs.

On Thursday after Brock opened his birthday presents, I sat down at the computer to check emails, and Luke came up the stairs telling me something.  You know how it is, though–most of the time, the kids come up telling me about what they did on their video game, or arguing about turns, etc., so I kind of half-listen sometimes.  Such was the case as I was reading emails on my computer.  Luke talked on, and I kept reading my emails.  Luke turned to go back downstairs and said, “So, what should we do?”  That caught my attention, so I asked Luke to repeat what he had been telling me.  He said that something was underneath Snickers, and he was pretty sure it was a baby guinea pig!  So, I went downstairs to check, and sure enough, there was a brand new, freshly born guinea pig!

Well, now we know that Abilene is a boy, and Snickers is a girl.  We immediately had to come up with different housing arrangements!  We scrounged around and found an old cage to put Abilene in until we can get something better, and left Snickers and the baby in the other cage.  I have never had much luck with my pets raising babies, so I cautioned the kids not to get too excited until we could see how things were going to go.  Within hours, though, that little pig was running all over the place, and Snickers was doing a great job taking care of it, so now I think it’s safe to say that we have three guinea pigs.

There is one problem:  we have NO IDEA if the baby is a boy or a girl!  So, this story might repeat itself in a few months. . . .


Mama and Baby

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