Saturday, September 26, 2009


This summer I took two classes of Hebrew. One of the best parts of Hebrew is that it was obviously created by a fellow left-hander! No more smearing my writing while I drag my hand through the letters I had just scribbled, no more curving my wrist in a feeble attempt to please my 3rd grade teacher by getting my letters to slant the 'correct' way, and no more flipping through the pages of my book awkwardly with my right hand! Hebrew books are read from the 'back' to the front and the sentences are read and written from right to left. This is obviously the divine language!

I say that of course somewhat in jest, but it is one of the languages that our Lord and Savior spoke. It is mind blowing to read and write as Jesus did when He lived amongst us. Hebrew is not only very beautiful when it is written or spoken, but I think it is especially beautiful when it is sung. During one of our class periods we had a guest professor come and teach us a song in Hebrew called, "Hashkiveinu." It is a song that is sung by many Jewish families and is a regular part of Jewish worship. I was told that this song has been sung in the Synagogues for hundreds of years, in fact it dates all the way back to the first century. This of course means that there is a decent chance, maybe even a very good change that Jesus Himself would have sung this (of course to a different tune) at His synagogue or even at His house with His mother and father. I thought that this was pretty incredible, so I immediately taught it to my kids. I mean, if Jesus might have sung it, I figured it wouldn't hurt us to learn it - right? Hashkiveinu, I'm happy to say, is now our regular bed time song. The words simply mean, "Lay us down to sleep Adonai (Lord) our God in peace, and raise us again our King to life." Here is a rendition for you to enjoy. I'm sure Mary, Joseph, and Jesus would have made this sound a whole lot better, but we're working on limited resources here...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Good Times in the City

Here we are at the Rock N Roll McDonald's in the downtown area. The kids had been begging to visit this McDonald's, and I have to admit that it was quite impressive. This double-decker McDonalds has been around for quite some time, and now it is nicely remodeled. The ambience even made up for the "no refills" factor.
Oscar and Lina came along with us on our tangent to McDonald's.

Here is the main reason for our journey to downtown. We enjoyed a boat tour on the Chicago River and Lake Michigan. This was a seminary trip for students and families. Thanks for the fun NPTS!
My attempt to capture the city lights. Can you see the '14' on the (I think it's the AON) building? That would be the countdown for the big Olympic location decision.

Posted by: Anita O.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Our Sink Story

This was how our bathroom looked before Alise had the encounter with the sink. One recent Friday night, I asked Alise to go wash her feet in the sink before bed because they needed washing. It was only about 2 minutes later that I heard a horrible crashing sound coming from the direction of the bathroom and Alise quickly exiting with fright in her eyes. She kept repeating, "It's all my fault."

Yes, Alise caused the bathroom sink to crash to the floor and break into smithereens. Poor Alise had quite a cry because she felt so bad, but I assured her that is was just as much my fault because I should have chosen my words more carefully and had her wash in the tub. I had witnessed that the sink didn't have the most sturdy feel, but I was shocked that my not-so-heavy child could cause this much damage!

Thankfully, North Park came and fixed our sink and look at how nice the replacement is! Now we are trying to decide what to have Alise sit on next. Ha! Maybe our van!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Kids Are Back in School!

This year our kids are all in school at the same time for 7 1/2 hours a week! Wow, we have had a kid at home since Emily was born in 1999. Natalie is going to Preschool this year for a couple of hours in the morning, three days a week.

Emily: outside of Peterson Elementary School with her friend Tiffany
Emily says that she would rate her week of school as a 9 out of 10. She likes being back at school, but she is not liking the homework.
Alise rated her week at school a 10 out of 10. She says that she has made 3 new friends in her class this year. She says that Ms. Hauge is still her favorite, but her teacher this year, Ms. Pak, is quite good.
Luke is the most enthusiastic about school. He loves to play with his friend Stella at recess and he thoroughly completes his homework each night.
Natalie says that she will not be afraid to go back to school on Monday morning. She made one friend, but she doesn't know her name. Natalie's big commute to Preschool is to walk across our street, Christiana Avenue, and into the doors of the church! So convenient.

We are praising the Lord for another great start at Peterson school. We are so thankful that each of our kids have good teachers and enjoy attending school each day.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Latest Adventures

The kids and I took the Mega Bus to Minnesota in August. We spent some days with my family in Bloomington and Natalie was a flower girl in my cousin Julie's wedding in Duluth. Our adventures included seeing the Extreme Makeover Home in Superior (airing this fall), watching Natalie do a lovely job as flower girl, visiting with extended family, boating with Grandpa G., and shopping at Build-a-Bear.

Can you see us? Anita, Luke, Alise, Natalie (Emily was taking the picture)
Here we are viewing the makeover house.
Sweet Natalie

Cousins: Deb, Krista (my sister), Brenda, Anita, Carolyn
Great times in a Minnesota lake
Luke and his cousins: Ben and Micah
The kids shared a Build-a-Bear as their keepsake from the Minnesota vacation. They had so much fun picking out the perfect stuffed dog and outfit (of course they chose a Twins outfit).

The Chapin's came to Chicago for a weekend in August. We had much fun with them in town!
Dave C, Dave O, Luke, Mike
Natalie and Anne
Sara and Emily

We finished up our summer fun by going to Kentucky to visit Dave's sister and family. The kids enjoyed their cousins and it was fun to see a different part of the country. Thanks Bergmeier's for a fun weekend!
We walked to the McDonalds for a sweet treat together.
The kids with Aunt Becky and Uncle Chaun

Churchill Downs home of the Kentucky Derby!

I should also mention that we enjoyed a weekend in Willmar, Minnesota, this past August. We went to Minnesota to be with our church family as we mourn the death of our dear friend, Jenna Van Buren. The weekend was special because we did get to be with so many great friends, but it was not a picture taking weekend.

Posted by: Anita O.