Thursday, March 31, 2005

Bigfoot sighting in the Fort!


BIGfoot
Originally uploaded by wes gaines.
I was anticipating a good week, mostly because we were finally going to break the 70 degrees mark in the Fort of Wayne (for the record we did). Little did I know how good the week would really turn out, but I found out today. Yes, BIGFOOT is in town, Oh yeah, we have a BIGFOOT sighting in the Fort and not since those childhood drives through St. Louis has my heart felt such a thrill! Anyways, for those who care to read, here are my interesting finds for the week:

I listened to a radio program where this renowned economist has come up with a plan to end poverty by 2025. He's written a book which I might take a gander at and of course the foreward is written by Bono (who else). He also has a website, take a look> link

Have you ever been annoyed by a T.V. in a restaurant or any public place? There is an invention out that will turn off any T.V. Its called TV B Gone. I never really noticed but its so true, if there is a T.V. on we're automatically drawn to it, Sarah has even caught me watching "the game" through the reflection in the window one time when we were at a restaurant. I think I need a T.V. B Gone
Check it out here

Zimbabwe's elections were today and it looks bad for Mugabe!

A planned gay pride parade in Jerusalem is raising a stir with leaders of all three religious groups in the Holy Land, read more


That's it. Sounds like Jeff and Steph might be hooking up another U-Haul before we know it. I agree with Andrew, the ultimate Heart Cry encore was "Somebody say Amen!" AMEN

New_River_Bridge


New_River_Bridge
Originally uploaded by stevelamps.
Shea and I will be driving over this bridge tomorrow. Where is it and what is it? Here's a hint

Jimmy Lester

That's right folks where going white water rafting. It's that time of year again when I throw on a wetsuit and test mother nature's power. Don't worry dad, I know that, "You just don't mess with mother nature." I've been in serious training the last couple of weeks so I can "hard right" when needed or "all back" when called upon. Strategic catnaps (wes) have been helping me store up the needed energy to make it through the dreadful "Toss Your Cookies." Im not sure if that's a name of a rapid but most likely it will be. Shea and I will be paddling hard for all of you and maybe we will even lift up our paddles and shout "praise the Lord" after every rapid. Just like the good old days.

AH YEAH...The Reunion...

Well, I bet people are wonderin' how Jeff and Steph's West Coast reunion is doin', being it the first time back since we were forced out of our home by enemy ESCROWS j/k! I will first thank Abby for the encouraging words...and will follow her simple, easy-to-read-and-write vertical format. Here's an update:
FLIGHT-OUT: Caleb slept THE WHOLE WAY! Nice couple gave up seats so we could sit together.

OC UNCLE BOB'S: Mediterranean fiddles, hammock between two palms, lush rolling Anaheim Hills, SO GENEROUS....bling.

JUAN ROSAS and SD: Same ole' sarcasm. Called me "Aushweitz" (spelling?),as well as Karen Carpenter (cause I couldn't stomach a 5th carne asada + corona), told me TMI about Hot Tub, gave soooooo much crap to come back to SoCal, still writing off the lobster and coronas as "church business" after short baja mission trips...Micaela BEAUTIFUL, and Jake: SQUIRRELLY! Church growin'. How did they get that crib! Jacuzzi,pool,veranda, HD TV...Jabez.

SHERATON HOTEL AND MARINA ON SD BAY: YEAH BABY...I mean..great views

LA TRAFFIC TO SANTA BARBARA: the only thing I HATE about my beloved California

SANTA BARBARA: Paradise...GETAWAY...Mountain breezes...Ocean whispers...1.2 million $ for a 400 sq. ft studio apartment. Yesterday while speaking with Jacob, I fried an egg on my stomach.

MEXICAN FOOD: Every day so far...and my gut is feelin' it but I won't stop hittin' it. Fish tacos y carne asada last night.

CALEB's FIRST TIME: NO ALLERGIES, BREATHING BETTER than ever! Started walking (j/k)....SLEPT THROUGH THE NIGHT FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER! 3 days staright!!! AN OMEN?????!!!!!

JACOB and ABAGAIL: SPOKE WISDOM AND HEALING IN OUR LIVES. ENCOURAGED/CHALLENGED by deep conversation. Thank you.

BEN and BECKY: BECKY....Microsoft's future CEO...BEN...PUTS steven SPeilberg to shame...and Mr. Lampi I LOVE YOUR HUMBLE HEART and BLISSFUL SPIRIT, guys.

ANDREW'S HOUSE: BIG, BROWN, BEER, COLLEGE BOYZ...enough said

THE WAVES: FRIO! Found out the hard way while hittin' a little SB surf...my wetsuit had a little tear down the zipper......Now....who has worn my wetsuit besides me???

MY WIFE: The best vacation of our lives...Not so much the weather...or the landscapes....or the attractions...but our friends and family. DIDO what Abagail said. My WIFE and I are enjoying each other much more, and feel refreshed, ready to make some romantic/spiritual strides on this crazy marraige thing. Who would of thought God would take us 3000 miles back to Cali to break up some stale ground in our relationship? Steph, you're my best friend.

I hope I didn't forget anything....OH YEAH...
THE SPARTANS!!!!: GO STATE...SCREW the POOL! YOU CAN HAVE IT! TURN OVER SOME CARS and BURN THE COUCHES...WATCH OUT EAST LANSING...GET A TO! TOM IZZO: PERSEVERANCE AND TENACIOUS DEFENSE! should I bet in VEgas next year???

OUT!

Tonite we head back through LA, hook-up for a quick visit in G-Dora, back to OC, Laguna with my little cousin Terra manana, home by 7:30 Saturday morning...On anti-depressants by Sunday.

Lena and Bill: Don't forget to pick us up?? LOVE YA! May be my parents and you guys can go in together on some condos or house in Glendora. MY dad loves Azusa..my mom...the sun...and me, well....you know. Ha!

COMMUNITY BEFORE 30....To be continued

If I could be anywhere right now.....


OaxacaStreet
Originally uploaded by sarahjgaines.
I'd be in Oaxaca, drinking an iced coffee.....

Where would you be?

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Tuesday around 5:30

Just wanna give a Happy Tuesday shout out to the fam. Just an hour and a half left before I close up the Homework House for the day. Right about now, I begin getting anxious to see my husb and chill in the big blue chair (that is if Harley allows). I also wanted to say that I am so thankful for each and every one of you and the individual contribution of committment, love, and character you bring to this wonderful family. I realize that our family is a community that is tremendously rich with talents and gifts and I'm just so thankful to be able to be a part of it. Something I admire in you:
Bill: Kindness
Lena: Meekness
Wes: Quiet Confidence
Sarah: Engaging
Ben: Steadfastness
Becky: Honesty
Andrew: Risk-taker
Jeff: LIFE
Steph: Passion
Caleb: Cute little over bite!
Steve: Humility
Shea: Joy
Norm: Genuinely caring
Debbie: Sincerity
Jacob: Hot Bod (and just about everything else)
Love you so much!

Back home

So I've been from LA to Brighton, to Grand Rapids back to Brighton.
Flew from DTW to Chicago to KC to Portland then drove 3 hours to the beach and back, took a 7 hour greyhound bus and then a 12 hour day in the car and now I'm home and thouroughly exhausted.
It was an amazing Spring Break, I got to hold my nephew, chill with Wes y Sarah and some other Rock Stars, I saw Patrick and had a great time with Moms and Pops and a lady and Oregon was beautiful.
Now I don't think the Blog board is a great place to spread news or start rumors but I know you Gaines girls eat this stuff up. I spent a great deal of time with this girl in Michigan and things are looking pretty good. Mom and Dad were privy to meet her and she may be coming out to visit soon, if you know what I mean.
Ok, that's all. I've gotta go to class and graduate soon. Peace and rest.
Aganies

Awww...


DSC02028.thumb
Originally uploaded by sarahjgaines.
Look at this cute picture of Andy and Trish's son Jake.

(aka andy in miniature).

Easter Weekend 2005...Oh the Memories!

It's now Monday night and we're finally back in G-dora after a very nice Easter weekend. It's been awhile since I've done an update blog, so here we go...

Friday night we had an amazing dinner down in the OC at Uncle Bob and Aunt Laure's with Jeff, Steph, Caleb, Ben and Becky (aka the computer guru). After watching the Spartys (yes, the bandwagon rolls on) take down the Dukies (ask Jeff about my prophetic score prediction at halftime ala a homerun over the left field stands at his bachelor party), we dined on some incredible grilled salmon and had fun catching up. Saturday the Lampi crew came up to the SGV (San Gabriel Valley) for a traditional leisurely Glendora stroll to a local coffee shop, then on to Rubios for some killer Mexican grub.

We hit San Diego after Easter service complete with Alan's references of the band Korn being at his wedding (another story for another time). Great cookout in San Diego with the Aldrich's. We stayed a bit longer today and took Harley for his first glimpse of the Pacific. We went to Del Mar beach where dogs were allowed and got lot of laughs watching him run towards the waves before the crashed and the dart as fast as he could away so as not to get his paws wet. He must be my dog! Eventually, he did get in when Abigail waded up to her knees and he could no longer contain his excitement and pushed through his fears! We had never been to Del Mar before and it was so serene and picture perfect. We hiked a bit along the cliffs above the crashing waves and found a bench where we sat and just soaked it all in.

We're now back home...I've got the rest of the week off and Abigail is back to HH tomorrow. Looks like Jeff is well on his way to another NCAA Tourney victory. Just call him the Swami. All he needs is a UNC victory over who? Oh yeah, the Spartys...guess that's a conflict of interest. Much love from SoCal. Look for an upcoming feature spread on a certain local intruamural team. They're back in action this week! Cheers!!

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Musings from the Fort

Hello family,

I just read through a series of interviews with Dallas Willard (yes Willard again) and I thought he had some challenging thoughts on theology, the church, grace, and "Vampire christians" Read these: Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Q&A

I started reading "The Vision and The Vow" Dad is too, join the fun! Buy it here

Sarah and I watched the American version of "The Office" I think its a little overdone and not nearly as funny as the British version, you can't top David Brent. Arrested Development is our favorite show right now.

Congrats to the Spartans! What a game, for the first time in my life I was pulling for them or maybe just rooting against Duke! And Benny G. pulls ahead in the brackets! Go Illini! Sarah is still lamenting Utah's defeat.

Challenge of the week: Come up with the ultimate Heart Cry set list.

Happy Easter everyone!

Friday, March 25, 2005

The Company Computer Guy

Well when many of you have a computer question im assuming that my name doesnt exactly come up first to help. Think again. For the next six weeks when a gladstone gladiator is frantic trying to create a new document or download a pdf file i will be running to their rescue. thats right, i am gladstone highschools version of the company computer guy-computer teacher extrodinare. i figure there will be a lot of sighs, rolled eyes and "MOVE'S" it comes naturally when you are the computer expert. and no, this is not a joke!
the computer guru
becky

Thursday, March 24, 2005

a sweet web-site to check-out

I feel like I'm the only one posting these last few days. Maybe that tells me I have too much time on my hands while I'm on campus.
Anyhow, I found this awesome web-site: www.newdream.org it deals with living a healthy, ecological lifestyle--with good cleaning, buying, recycling, etc. tips. It's really cool.

Here are some links:

Here is a section of the web-site where you can choose a company from the list and get a synopsis of their business/environmental ethics.

Also, here is another section listing the top 21 or so things americans can buy fair trade/organic/etc that will make the biggest difference (compared to buying other things fairly).

I just thought it was a really informative and cool site that is great for searching when free time comes around.

Ciao!

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Goshhhh


wez
Originally uploaded by sarahjgaines.
All right, I know i've said this before, but do you think this guy resembles wes? yet another friend pointed this out to me yesterday--the long hair, split down the middle, the mouth, the eyes.... Do you know who it is? It's John Heder who plays Napoleon Dynamite. Weird, huh? It's strange when your husband has slight resemblences to all these actors and celebs. I don't even know who I married anymore.

"The Vow"

The past several months the Lord has brought three books into my life all with the same theme. I think there is a message in there for me. The latest book I receive for my B'day was called "The Vow" by Pete Greig. Wes has mentioned it in an earlier blog. For where I am at and the two previous books, this is a strong message that is meant for me - as well as others who call Jesus their Lord. I will not go into detail here about the book because I would rather discuss this with you or create enough interests in you that you read it. Of the three books I have read, the Vow has been the most convicting. I am about 1/3 the way through it and have a hard time putting it down.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Hi from Norm

Well, we have two days left until Easter break. Deb and I wiill be going down to the Georgiou's condo in Fl for a week. I know how excited Deb is for the WARM weather. Jeff, Steph, and Caleb are leaving Thurs. afternoon for the land of sun and surf (ca.) I know they are excited to see all the family. Take care of them, and make sure they come back to Michigan. Youth Extr. was fantastic this year. Wes did a super job under awful health issues. It was nice to see Sarah. I am lucky to have daughter-in-laws on the Gaines side that are beautiful, smart, and Christian. Lampi side also... Have a GREAT Easter. I am blessed beyond what I deserve. Praise God.

MR. LAMPI DID WHAT TO A STUDENT?

As I sat back watching 2 of my fine young burritos perform their rehearsed dialogue en espanol, I had no idea what would face me in the upcoming moments…As the swashbuckling gringitos faced-off in a make believe duel… the sophomore boy lunged back, losing his footing, his clod-hoppers not moving….yet his gangly legs swingng forward with a wicked twist. Next thing I know is the class goes silent…and the boy lies motionless on the ground stark white in shock. “Mr. Lampi…I can’t move.” After a call to the office, one home to mom, one to 911, and a rendevous with the EMS and local bomberos (fire dept.), this poor boy is placed on a stretcher with his tworked knee swelling by the second, and myself, a non-tenured teacher is awaiting my fate. The principal stares at me and smiles…Geez Jeff…why don’t you just stick to some dittos and worksheets, instead of getting these kids out of their seats and movin’…it’s safer, ha! To make a long story short, the boy will be ok (dislocation), and after I dispel of the many rumors around school of myself getting REX-KWON-DO psycho on a child, so will I. Always something interesting happening in the “P” (Pinckney for any out-of-towners).

What's up with march birthdays

So happy birthday to yet another birthday boy. Our one and only William. From here on out happy birthday to everyone else for the rest of the year, I'm sick of missing them. I had no idea March was such a popular month. Wesley, YE was great and I'm so glad to once again have you as a worship leader if only for a moment in time. Let's just say you had Shea hopp'in. Sarah thanks for the shirts, they are pretty cool and I think they might be made in a sweatfree shop or was it sweat shop free. One of the two. I had no idea daniel boone wore camoflauge and boston redsox look-alike jacket. That's great! I haven't had much feedback on my cool wolf drawing yet. I would appreciate some. It's not like it only took me a couple of minutes or something. Have agreat week everyone. peace out form Mt. P. BAB's Pine Forever! (I wonder how big it is now)

Oh, sweet victory....

If I could have everyone's attention for one moment....I would like you to notice that on our ESPN fantasty roster I am in sixth place, yes, sixth place.......any my husband is in LAST!!!! YES!!!! It may only be for today (or until the next game), but these few moments are sweet. I said, "wes, shea is even beating you and she chose teams according to jersey color." Wes, what's going on?

Monday, March 21, 2005


Wish every day was this chill Posted by Hello

Youth Extravaganza

I'd just like to say thanks so much for everyone who came to YE this weekend. it really meant a lot to us. the kids had a great time--signing autographs, taking photos, etc. i think wes and i are old (literally and figuratively) news. oh well, such is life.

We are tired (and wes is sick as a pup), but we are so glad the weekend was such a hit.

Daniel


Daniel
Originally uploaded by sarahjgaines.
I couldn't help it. You guys had to see this hilarious photo of my little brother as Daniel boone.

I got your back Pam!

If you would have seen it from across the sanctuary I'm sure you would have seen the fear in a Pam Franklin's eyes. I mean, here she was, finally reaching out and saying hello to Andrew (the first time on record) Her freakin' Pay less 2 for 1's gave way. What would you do if you saw Pam falling your direction? The lady that nabbed you for years as you tried to sneak 2nd desserts, whose eyebrows defy creation, and whose intimidation is unmatched. Would you not too reach out and catch a falling Pam Franklin? I think you would. Because Pam Frankiln, 218 pounds of history and reputation does not deserve to be left on the crimson sanctuary floor. You owe me Elmer. I don't care how many sanctuary doors you opened or how many firm hand shakes you gave. Who was there for Pam? That's what it comes down to.
22 years were recreated in one incident and for this I deem Pam a genius. Who was able to make up for missed birthday cards, cold shoulders, head shakes, Pam it was you.
That fall was planned for years.
Peace.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

BESIDES ONE OF THE GREATEST MESSAGES DELIVERD AT BCC EVER...

First person to find-out about Andrew's surprise run-in at church wins...???
So proud of her bearded boy...Bill testing spirits...Can you spot Jeff Deale??  Posted by Hello
Excuse me...Can you 2 tell me how far it was the fall from Heaven... Posted by Hello
Friendship and the Fear.. Posted by Hello
Stuck in a moment.. Posted by Hello
My glorious! Posted by Hello
YE 2005 Friday night pics! It was hot! The band was sick (literally and figuratively)...sarah jane introduced her new fresh clothing line..Steve was ready on deck....Shea was bouncing...Bill and Leen were kickin' it....Caleb got back stage passes...BTW sorry Bill...HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Posted by Hello

Happy Birthday Dad!

A very big happy birthday wish from Ben and Becky. You are such an amazing man of God and a leader for all of us. Thank you for continuing to be such a great dad! Go and enjoy your birthday! We will call later.
Happy Birthday
Ben and Becky

Saturday, March 19, 2005

happy happy birthday may all your dreams come true....

happy birthday to a wonderful father-in-law. i'm glad to be with you on this, your dia especial. the thing i remember about first meeting you is the look in your eyes as you realized, as i sat down next to your son at grecian island, that i was not in fact adam's girlfriend but possibly wes's girlfriend. you said, "well, wes, i won't ask you about your love life right now." later you told wes, "i have one word after meeting sarah, 'confident'" while i don't know how confident I am, i do know if i had to choose a word to describe this mystery photograph of you, i would choose, "count confident"! cheers to a great man!!

Happy Birthday Dad!!!


The Count
Originally uploaded by wes gaines.
Well it goes without saying that our Dad is one of a kind, and there still is no explanation for this photo. Thank you Dad for always being so kind, humble, and for being a godly leader. It was awesome to be with you on your day. I will walk you to your car.

Shea's in

hey, better late than never. Good news, shea is in.

wolf


wolf
Originally uploaded by stevelamps.
Hey guys, I've been working on sketching lately. Tell me what you think of my wolf picture. I call this sketch "white socks" from the movie Dances With Wolves.

YE 2005

Wes - excellent
Band - great
Skits - funny (Josiah as Napolian Dynamite, Jeremy Livingston as Pedro)
Matt M. - Cheerleader
Jeff & Steph - great friends and supporters
Steve & Shea - worshippers
Mom & dad - proud
Sarah - a perfect match for the worship leader.
Norm and Debbie - best friends
YE Speaker - Intimidating & wound a little tight

Friday, March 18, 2005

Rules for Living Revisited

I've been thinking about the article Wes mentioned from Relevant magazine- haven't had a chance to see the article, but from the article Wes threw out for thought the concept of a Rule for life ( was that the phrase?) anyway, something that governs how we live, how we conduct our lives. As I was reading Luke 1 from the New Living Translation, a verse jumped out at me. In response to the angel Gabriel's announcement, Mary says, "I am the Lord's servant, and I am willing to accept whatever he wants." v.38 I'm not there yet, but that's where I want to be. If I truly come to see myself as a servant, then the focus is off me and if I truly believe that he is a good God then I can accept whatever he wants for me.
YO YO YE 2005 esta noche! C-unit preparing for the show. We'll have some pics of the venue later this eve. Go State! "Desperation leads us hear.."

Posted by Hello

March Madness and the Boyz in Blue

I was late. Excuses? Sure I've got them. We all do. But on this night, being late meant that I missed the first 5 minutes of the Boyz in Blue (aka Andrew's intramural b-ball team) jumping out to a 14-0 run and sticking the dagger in the heart of the other (uandefeated) team before they could even get on the board. I don't know how to quite explain the phenomenon that is this raggamuffin group of guys that bring it night in and night out with relentless intensity and an unwillingness to let their opponent breathe. Their fans come in droves. Why do they come? I think it is because they exemplify what's right in amateur collegiate athletics. There is simply no quit and their fans appreciate that. I think my favorite part of tonight's game that shows the desire that both fan and athlete share came late in the second half. The fellas were up 50-19 with about 2 minutes to go in the game. As the opposing point guard crossed midcourt the chant of "D-FENSE...clap,clap...D-FENSE" began to resonnate throughout the crowd. What was this? Up by 31 points and they were calling for one more stop. Andrew's team didn't disappoint. They buckled down, slapped the floor (I think), and got the steal much to the delight of the faithful. Final score...59-24. Next up...the dreaded "football" team that likes to get physical. Sorry guys, you might have the pecs, but the Boyz in Blue have got the heart! Stay tuned for next weeks highlights. Out.

Hi! from Debbie...

Hey...I'm blogging...Did I say/spell that right Andrew? Heee....This was a great idea Wes and I will make a point to blog and get your news. Jeff may have told you that he, Steph and Caleb stayed with us for a week, while the odors of the paint and carpet in their basement disappeared. They had water damage and their insurance took care of the repairs. We have the same thing, but in our family room. The roof is fixed and now the interiors fellows will repair the ceiling, drywall and paint the kitchen and family room. It will be a mess.... But spring is just around the corner....and we are so ready for it!
Anyway, we got spoiled having Caleb here..he is so much fun and easy to have around. Next Thursday, we are off to FL to stay at Steph's folk's condo and to just take it easy. We are taking bikes (not mt. bikes...Lena warned me about how much work they are...heee....Ours are "Kensington bikes"...All for now. please continue to pray for Caleb's health. love you all! Debbie

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Birthday Pup


june b jones
Originally uploaded by wes gaines.
Seriously, Harley. I accepted Christ into my heart like six months ago. Plus, I'm bigger than you and I was the first pup in this family, so don't steal all my glory with this "cute, little, puppy business". Here I am at my first birthday party with my homemade treat/cake. Mmmmm...you've got awhile to go before you get a first birthday.

Originally posted by Sarah Jane
Reposted by the blogfather

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

What a cute niece we have!!!


Picture2
Originally uploaded by apuhombre.
This is our cute little niece Ava-we thought you all should get the chance to see her cute little face. Kristin and Mike will be bringing her home from etheopia on april 20th. we cant wait to meet her and welcome her home. its funny how much you can love someone before you even get the chance to meet them.
auntie beck and uncle ben

Feliz Cumpleanos

Happy birthday to such a young stud. Steve has is all, he has the ability to speed through Grand Rapids, Get his best friend pulled over for shouting "Jesus Loves You" to a cop, and the ability to survive in the Kentucky Mountains on Oatmeal Alone. Wow, Best of all has such a God given talent for worship and serving the Lord.

Oh yeah, Norm, if you are reading this about your son and thinking wow what a great dad i am to have such an angel like steve...rembember those days in church when steve supposivly had to go to the bathroom during the church service...he was actually meeting me in the bathroom to "take a break" for a while.

Much Love and Birthday Wishes from Classroom C-12 here at Gladstone High!
Ben and Becky

Steve-o

Otanji omedeto esteban. You're a man with skillz and a firm foundation. Do you remember that song, 'Firm Foundation'?
Every Year, we would would head down to Summer in the SOn, Steve would dominate the courts and Gary would pirate a handfull of whistles and beats to bring back to BCC much to Madingers' dismay.
Happy Birthday brother. I love you and I hope to see you this week-end.
GO Chips.
Andrew

Happy Birthday, Steve! From, Harley


Steve, this is a picture of me when I was just a wee little guy. I didn't even have my mullet yet! I can't wait to meet you someday. My parents have told me all about how great you are and how much fun we could have together. My mom told me about all the practical jokes you played on her with Uncle Ben before her and my Dad got married. You sound so funny! Also, I just accepted Jesus in my heart and I love the music my mom and dad play. They told me you're even better than that David Crowder guy. Did they tell you I'm in puppy kindergarten? Anyway,I hope you're birthday is the best. Mines on October 10th. Hopefully we can see eachother someday soon.
Love, Harley Gaines Posted by Hello

Help Debbie

Looks like mom lampi might need some help with blogger. One step at a time mom. First figure out how to get into Microsoft Word and then we will go from there.
Just kidding, Love Ya

Good Luck Dad.

Puncxotoni Phil

I have to say thank you for the story about my deceased grandma and how I wanted to tell her about Jesus after she had passed. Wesley, I would let you lead my children into worship any day for the sole fact that you are so hot. Stinkin Caliente! Look at that punum. The clown is real Wes, stop hatin. Sarah, you and Shea will have something to talk about this weekend because Shea enjoys picking her winning teams soley by what color their jerseys are. Luckily for her sake, Fairfield Dickinson isn't pink. I've been thinking a lot about winter and spring and how not once has Puncxotoni Phil declared an end to winter when he was let out of the cage in January since I've been alive. Why do they even do it. And wouldn't he see his shadow in the spring too. What a dumb tradition. I'm stumped. Ben, way to pull out the Buster quote. He did have a song on his heart and it was the same one everytime but a classic. Adios.

Steve

Sketchy


Sketchy
Originally uploaded by sarahjgaines.
Would you want this man leading worship for your children?

You'll never guess what I did. . .

Yes, folks, it's true. I signed up for the fantasy basketball thing. Without an ounce of help I signed up, frantically and randomly clicked away without forethought, and chose tie-breaker scores even though i have no idea what that means. I just want you to know that should I win you all owe me something. (Bill, that means an apology).



Plus, my picks are probably worth a good laugh. Especially considering I didn't get any assistance ......Jeff.......

Happy Birthday, steve-o

So, I was trying to think of a good story, but once I heard the one from lena i thought, "no, i can't top that. i'm not even going to try."

Well, Steve. You're a cool cat. You're a determined, serious worship leader. You have a great sense of humor. (and a great wife).

I hope your birthday is excellente.

A Birthday Blog for Esteben

My birthday story for Steve is about the time he and I were doing VBS. We were outside with our assigned kids, I think K.T. was in charge of recreation that year. We were in a big circle and the object of the game was that when the ball was tossed to you , you had to yell out who you were going to tell about Jesus. Well, the ball came to Steve obviously a little faster than he anticipated and he yelled out, "I'm going to tell my grandma." Only problem being that both of his grandmothers were deceased. Oops.

Happy Birthday Steve. I love the heart of worship that God has given you and how you are using that heart to proclaim Him on the campus of CMU.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

An Office With A View


Mount Baldy
Originally uploaded by apuhombre.
Here is the view from my classroom. What a beautiful sight of Mt. Baldy snow covered! I have a song on my heart....how great thou art! Love from Gladstone High School. Ben

Hi to California and Ft Wayne, Brighton

It is cold and snowy in Michigan. Who do you believe will win the b-ball tournament? Go to ESPN.com to locate tournament challenge . Steve set this up group name (hoopsters unite) the password is tourney. Fill out your brackets and be part of the tournament . Jeff is the defending champion, watch out. Word is he has spoken to Izzo. Have a good week, YE 2005 this weekend in Brighton. Wish all you could be here. Debbie doesn't blog well.

!Oye Esteban!


do you wanna revolution?
Originally uploaded by wes gaines.
Feliz, feliz, feliz cumpleanos shooter.

Classic Steve = getting off at the Coldwater, Michigan exit and asking for directions to the Coliseum on his way to Fort Wayne.

Steve is known for his many skills, one of his best is his pastoral heart towards leading worship, Steve directs people to Jesus and that's awesome to see.

Steve you've also got a couple urban legends to defend when I see you! A clown in the house for weeks. get out!

jk, lol, adios, viva mexico

wes

An eye-opener

Yesterday I made a decision, after much deliberation, that would forever change the routine of my day-to-day life. Because of this decision, today I see the world in completely different light. After 15 years of wearing glasses, I did it... I got my first pair of contacts. Now some of you may know about some of my "hang-ups." Contacts being one of them. You may have even heard me refer to them as "eye poison." I was pushed to this change after experiencing some chronic pain behind my left eye due to strain. However, some interesting news came out of my appointment with the optomotrist that made me feel a little better about some of my mild obsessions. After the doctor checked my eyes he found that the stigmatism in my right eye had completely corrected itself and the one in my left eye had almost completely corrected itself. He explained to me how rare this was and jokingly asked me if I had been eating a lot of carrots, or changed my diet. I humbly replied, "It might have something to do with my diet." Now, that was the understatement of the year! As you may, or may not know, for over a year now I have dedicated myself to the fervent study of the importance of natural food and medicine. I have spent hundreds of dollars on the purest essential oils, books and magazines, household products, cosmetics, and specialty foods, such as, splet flour and sprouted grain bread, kefir, raw/unheated honey, goat cheese, all organic fruits and vegetables, and the list could go on for miles. I've purged my house of most chemicals, pesticides, preservatives, and hormones (though you will still find a bag of low-fat oreos in our freezer). I have eaten salmon soup until I wanted to puke. I have O.D.'ed on blueberries, raw almond and sesame butter, and flax seeds. I only eat eggs rich in DHA and Omega-3 fatty acid. This has been no small endeavor. Most of you know that since I was about 3 yrs. old I have been a twink-aholic. I'm proud to say that I have been twinkie free for a full year now (well, I did have one relapse when I was given a box. I shoved three in my mouth and threw the rest away). All this to say that maybe there's something to my little obsessions... A year later I'm almost stigmatism free! So maybe I put the poison in my eyes, I have to admit I'm kind of enjoying being able to see everything at all times, but you still can't get me to carry a cell phone!

bono sweatshop-free

This morning on one of the morning shows, Katie Couric interviewed Bono, his wife Ali, and the clothing designer Rogan who just launched a sweatshop free line of clothing called EDUN.

Some highlights: Ali said, "how can i put my child in clothing made by other children?" Bono said he doesn't want people to buy the clothing out of charity but because they think it's cool, and they know that along the chain of labor, no one was exploited. They want a clothing line that promotes labor, not charity,--something that will continue to provide jobs instead of one-time relief.

One thing Bono said that really touched me was, "i will not wear something that was made in despair." Woah.

He also said (in regard to Africa and third-world nations) that their problems can be solved with one immunization or with food--simple things. "that's just unacceptable," he said. He said in the years to come people will think it's absolutely ridiculous that we had all this money and did nothing to help the easily-fixed issues overseas. He said "it will be just as ridiculous as 'no blacks on the top-half of the bus seems now'."

I just thought I'd share this because sweatshop issues have been on our minds (especially Wes's), and I think it's something we should start thinking about. The sad reality is that there aren't many options in our country for sweatshop-free clothing. I think that it'll be awesome if someday we boycott the companies who use child/exploited labor. Nothing will change them until they aren't making money off of us. It reminds me of Martin Luther King's brilliant bus boycott--he knew he couldn't change racist minds, so he rallied to stop giving them money, and the bus systems were seriously affected.

Here's a small snippit in the la times about EDUN.

p.s you'll be happy to know that the YE shirts we had printed are organic and sweatshop-free!

Monday, March 14, 2005

another look alike?


another look alike?
Originally uploaded by wes gaines.
How bout this one instead?

Get in the Pool!

I trust everyone hopefully got Steve's invite to take a dip into March Madness. I guess with the Wolverines once again failing to make the round of 64 it's my annual...toot, toot...all aboard the Sparty bandwagon...next stop is the Izzone for this Michigan kid. Gotta pull for the Big Ten. And what about the Golden Grizzlies from Oakland U? Someone's gotta take the Griz! See in the pool with my water wings on!!

And yes, I did get off the Laker train about game 3 of last year's NBA finals. Just got caught up in the glitz and glamour of the L.A. scence that's all. Glad we almost swept them! Late.

Reinhold Gaines


Reinhold Gaines
Originally uploaded by sarahjgaines.
My friend Patrick pointed out to me that Reinhold Messner might be a prime candidate for Wes's future look-alike.

status post

I just can't keep up with this Blogging. I gotta get in blogging shape.
But I wanted to respond to everyone's blog but I thought I'd just start a new one and make comments and offer new thoughts.

ANd Steve's not too good at landscaping either Jake. But he is really good at hiding truck loads of brush and logs. Not nearly as good as me hiding black dogs in dark spaces. If you let me borrow Harley for the afternoon I bet I could find some good hiding spaces for him too. You all have to check out Harley's mullet. No joke. And the Hermit Crab wasn't all that great, I didn't even know when it died.
I'm listening to Emiliana Torrini right now. REinforcing my idea that people from Iceland have the most beautiful accents and make equally as beautiful music. That's a thought Steve, 'Live from Iceland' or 'It's all good Worship'.
Is YE '05 on the week-end of the 20th? And will the Lampi clan be there? I'll be in for the week-end and I'd love to see you all.
I'm going to go find a lunch or at least enough pieces of fruit and nuts to make a lunch.
Fort Wayne's not that Bad Wes. DId you even write about the Colliseum, or the festival?
Ok.
Feliz cumpleanos mi tio!!! Yo te amo mucho... Posted by Hello

SHOOTER TURNING 25 ON WEDNESDAY!!!

YO YO YO....FELIZ CUMP, Esteban! Y'all want to holla' at STEVE-O for his birthday this Wednesday! Just like Bec, tell a funny story, put him on the hot seat, whatever....Keep it real!

Monday Morning Here We Go

I apologize for my last blog. I have had bad luck with this so far. My blogs seem to not want to be published. So I did a test run. Anyway, I am trying to get off to a good start here monday moring with crowder settin it off with a little remix and some pretty chili 2 degree weather for some wake up help. Good idea with this blog stuff Wes. I had a chance to read some previous ones and I must say I am a little disturbed with the whole fre phelps thing. A little slap in the face of what Christ was all about (Matt 9:13 ".... for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners." Anyway I am back in school after a rather eventful spring break. I had the flu for half of it and went to chicago and spent time with shea. It was fun. As for the net coupl of weeks here at CMU I will be setting up a live cd from fellowship. It will definitely be a good time learning all about that stuff. Any title idea for it let me know. Knowing all of you very well, cheesey titles are more than welcomed, but we will probably not choose them. Alright, that is it for now. Shea nd I love all of you very much. Some we will see this weekend and others later.
Adios.

p.s. Jake, I can't play golf very well or tennis. I'm probably no good at Jai Lai either. Thanks though. Love ya
Hi

Sunday, March 13, 2005

the laramie project

Craziness in Fort Wayne this weekend. The play "the laramie project" which discusses the murder of homosexual Matthew Sheppard is showing at the Lincoln Museum which is in the other half of the library building. The well-known Kansas City pastor Fred Phelps protested around the Fort yesterday and is supposedly returning today with his fellow church members. They hold signs reading "god hates fags", etc. The first time I ever heard of him was on Michael Moore's old HBO television show, and I can honestly say I was furious. I found myself filled with absolute disgust that someone proclaiming to be a believer in Christ would ruin in one minute what true Christians invest (and love) in people for years! Anyway, someone in Fort Wayne wrote a letter to the editor responding to Phelps's behavior that I thought was worth reading. It's just the first response listed. (Click here).

C-luv les dice, "Gracias"

Gracias for praying for me tios y tias y abuelos Bill y Lena! I feel better today! Posted by Hello

Saturday, March 12, 2005

surfing on a snowy saturday

from wes:

The Israeli Defense Force has a new policy that won't accept recruits who admit to playing Dungeons and Dragons to the special forces (story) I wonder why(video)

was Bush right about the Middle East? (story)

Does anyone know that Zimbabwe is having elections? I didn't but this is interesting, especially for those who have been on a safari this past year. (story)

Music pick of the week: Matt Pond PA
(listen here)

Have a good weekend, Y.E. next week! out

wildebeests loose in fort wayne

For those of you who wondered what Wes meant when he said the wildebeest incident. (if it works!)

Friday, March 11, 2005

Caleblito

Many thanks to all of you who are praying for our little boy. Lets just say that the last 10 months have been filled with too many doctor visits. Honestly we are regulars in the office and now the hospital. Eventhough we are exhausted God sustains us and provides for us. Last night was difficult for me because his breathing got bad so quickly without much warning. When we were in the hospital strength and fear were battling for my attention. Lets just say that behind a few nurses backs I was a bit impatient and short especially with Jeff. One second I was embracing Caleb in my arms praying for him to breathe and the next minute my mind would wonder to the most disturbing thoughts and fears. I have never experienced fear or lack of trust as I do now. Because I am with Caleb everyday, I know him and what is normal. I still am not convinced that they have figured things out because he continues to struggle. Over the last 10 months I have been in many spiritual places. Lack of trust, fear, restoration, joy, praise, love, disappointment, hurt, loneliness, bewilderment. Through it all God is there and faithful. Even when I beg to feel Him, to hear Him, to see Him, in my heart I trust Him and know He is with us. He was with us through 9 months of pregnancy, 37 hours of labor, 10 months of life, too many doctors visits, and now 3 hospital stays. I claim abundant life over my family and I trust that God is here now too, even when my heart lacks trust in physicians with my precious baby. So please continue to COVER Caleb with prayer, he needs it! Correction we all need it!

PLEASE PRAY FOR LITTLE MAN

So, after spending the night in the emergency room with wife and child who has had big issues breathing and been diagnosed with upper airway disease (a precursor to Asthma)...I'm spent. If you haven't already known (sorry for not doing this previously) the little man has been through the ringer; over-nite hospital visits, annoying breathing treatments, you name it. Wes, Leeen and Bill can relate. It sucks! It kills me seeing Caleb struggle for breaths when he gets sick or is triggered by some unknown allergy. That's why I'm using some BLOG power (thanks Wes) and asking my family to lift the little man up. If you could be where I'm at right now, in Shooter's room on Norm and Deb's computer (here in Brighton cause painters have usurped our home in EL to paint the basement and the fumes are in obvious issue), you see an emotionally drained Steph, and myself, struggling to lead. Apologies for sounding too dramatic, but I'm keepin it real and honest. Yeah, God is so good. And he's (Caleb) so much better off than so many, as we are also. But, I still want to with all my heart to just have "the elders lay hands on him" as God calls us. So here I am. This big family we have together is the one Steph and I depend on, to raise up our ninos, vice versa. I don't care how many miles away everyone is; YOU are his spiritual leaders. Thanks guys. We love you, and can't wait to be out there soon. Just one of them days, you know? But it's ironic that when you feel so empty and far, on the edge, you feel right there on the brink of an amazing change or answer. And isn't it interesting that our Pediatrician has told us that this little guy is made for warm climates???? May be I'll run that by him today when we head back there for another appointment...Just to confirm, right?...Huh...I know...I shouldn't USE him as the answer, right? Whatever, if that's not legit....then I'm too legit to quick. Good way to wrap up with sum Hammertime...We Gots to pray just to make it today...Pray for Caleb today! See you soon West Coast Gang. Jeff xoxoStephxoxoxCalebxoxox

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Auction in the air

Please pray that tomorrow night I don't walk away with a 200 pound potting hutch.

A Tale of Two Cities


It goes without saying that our family and friends who live in brighter corners of our country have wondered “"Why Fort Wayne”?" To add to insult to injury and prompt further jeering, a recent study concluded that our beloved Fort Wayne was the DUMBEST city in the country (click here to read). Could this be? At this point I must defer to Kip who would say, “Napoleon there’s no way of even knowing that.” The dumbest city! And this just a year after having to combat the “fattest city” rumors! I feel like I need to defend my city. I live in Fort Wayne alright, and I like it. A recent USA Today article was a little kinder to us, as they had to visit to see if there were any “signs of intelligent life in Fort Wayne” (click here). But let me go further. Fort Wayne is part of all of our daily lives wherever we live. If you turned your T.V. on today, thank Fort Wayne, if you put gas in your car, thank Fort Wayne, if you washed your clothes this week, thank Fort Wayne, if you baked something with baking powder, thank Fort Wayne, if you listened to a record or ever went to a Stax-o-Wax dance, thank Fort Wayne, if you have ever enjoyed watching baseball at night, thank Fort Wayne, if you enjoyed watching the Piston’s sweep (err) beat the Lakers for the NBA championship thank Fort Wayne, and most important every time you chomp into an apple Thank Johnny and thank Fort Wayne. Fort Wayne is home to all these inventions: the T.V., the turntable or phonograph, baking powder, the gas pump, magnetic wire, the first lighted professional baseball game, the washing machine, and the World Champion Detroit Pistons read more here. And still today we have one of the best libraries in the country with 3 times as many books as any other city our size, we have a nationally acclaimed zoo (barring the wildebeast incident), museums, cinemas, 3 rivers, Fox Island, and Johnny Appleseed, enough said. How’'s your city doing? Bring it.
 Posted by Hello

A thank you from the new 24 year old

as i looked around me at dinner on my 24th birthday i couldnt help but smile. margaritas the size of my head were being sipped and chips and salsa downed. i love this family i am a part of! i appreciate all of the love i felt as i turned the big 2-4 being surrounded by jacob and abigail, andrew and my sweet husband. i felt so special reading all of the birthday shout-outs, all day i was reminded of the amazing people God has placed in my life. all of that to say a BIG thank you to all-i truely felt loved and that meant a lot to me. i will always remember my 24th birthday fondly. to my cali family see you soon and to those crazy michiganders we cant wait to see you in a couple of weeks.
-becky

a response to wes's rule of life post (scroll down)

i wanted to comment on wes's rule of life post up here because it has become lost in the insanity of our blogging. i think it'd be interesting to read the article and respond with our rules of life (if we have one). i was thinking that choosing a rule of life is hard to pinpoint because it's putting a label to something we already do. one example was Count Saxony, an 18th cent. aristocrat, who started a group with his friends where they took a vow to "be true to christ, to be kind to people and bring the gospel to the nations." in a way, isn't that what we already do (hopefully)? i think having a rule of life is like putting your lifestyle/goals into a few words simply in order to be intentional with what you're doing. i don't think it has to be as grand and as outstanding as it sounds, it's simple. something about putting our focus in life into words motivates us, makes us feel charged and full of purpose. anyway, after all that i'm not sure i know what my rule of life would be. i know that our "yearly verse" last year was something from the message about being a breath of fresh air in a squalid society "showing a glimpse of good living and of the living god." maybe that's my rule of life. could we have a family rule of life?

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The West Coast Gang


THE GANG.btmp
Originally uploaded by apuhombre.

Andrew and Jacob at Becky's Bash


IMG_1907
Originally uploaded by apuhombre.

BECKY"S WILD 24th BIRTHDAY BASH


Lavesta.btmp
Originally uploaded by apuhombre.
We wish you all were here

Confessions of a Jr. High Bible Teacher

A few night ago as I lay in bed, a steady stream of confessions danced through my head. Alas, I felt the need to deal publicly with one of those often overlooked sins that I think has kept many of us a little green...yes, I'm speaking of envy. So with that, I publicly offer up my list of things that have always made me a tad bit jealous (ask someone if you don't get some of them)...

Here we go... I'll start with the Lampi's pool on School Street. On hot, humid Michigan summer days how I longed to sit in the shallow end and wade it the crisp clorine. I'll not even begin to talk about my swimming ability vs. theirs. Just throw me my water wings! Then there's Wes' stuffed animal collection. Just how many did he really rack up in those few years? And that Cabbage Patch doll..errr...Brett I think he was. I'd given anything for just one hour of quality time. Next, Dad's fat wad of company cash sitting on his dresser. Why's he got all them 50's anyways? I never took a one of them, but I know a change snatcher (AMG) that did. Does he really only deal with Solvay? Then there's my Uncle Jim's old black Porche. I think he Zack and I once topped 100mph on a country road outside of Franklin, TN. How about Chris Tait during our QT's at Summer in the Son? Talk about jealous. The rest of us where trying to press in while baking in the Kentucky heat and all the while he was sipping cold cokes at Micky-D's. How'd he pull that off? Next, STEVE. Enough said (what can't he do?)

For the sake of time and space I'll now throw out some quickies with no explanation...Dave Ford's behind the back grabs at Hardy Hartland, Darren on base percentage (.988)last I checked, people that got to go on the BCC canoe trip, the DJ from Stax o' Wax, Jeff's skin, Joel and Anna's art, Chad Cooper's flat top, Ben's swirl, Micah Richardson's pager, Wes' imaginary friends (gosh I'd just like 1 of those guys), Tracy Tooley's curls (party in the back), Norm's career wins (got to be in the 500 club while I've only got 18), my dad's body surfing ability (better than Mark?), the Karabelski's nana and papa, Andrew's hermit crab, Ben's tourquoise and black high tops, and Ricky Monroe's half-pipe.

That's just shooting from the hip as the conviction flows. If by reading this public confession you are prompted to add any confessions feel free to comment. Alas, I feel so much better. Thanks for listening!

TAX DOLLAZ AND TEN COMMANDMENTS

Here's something. Ah yeah, the State of Education today. It's great that we have State Reps and school officials getting paid to argue about the Ten Commandaments in our schools, with our tax dollars....meanwhile our schools EVERYWHERE are failing, drop-out rates rising, and teachers leaving the field.....ahh whatever. Almost like the local pastor in a local community worried about the F bomb being dropped in a novel his son is reading at school while the another family down his street is in welfare waiting for their house to taken away, and wonderin' if they can afford to pay for the next time their kid gets sick... and no one's doin' anything... Way to go...pick your battles! WWJD...ha! Sometimes I wonder how the Big Man deals with us.. Just a quick word. Figure it's relevant with many of us in or entering this lucrative business of education...

Stay Tuned for Birthday Pictures

Becky's Birthday Fiesta Pictures soon to come

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

2 + 3 = ??

I don't know why I'm so happy about this but I got a C in my on-line Math class which means I'll be able to graduate this May! I've never been this excited about a C before, but those that know me and numbers would understand this is as monumental. So, if anybody needs me to divide a pizza evenly between a group of 3 or figure out the sales tax on an item that costs $3.27, please let me know. And I'll see ya'll at graduation.

Operation Blessing???

Gaines Crew...lets think of sending both of our grandmothers a little something to let them know we are thinking of them. Especially Grandma Fritz, but Grammie too. What do you think? If we could send something small (flowers, small gifts, andrew, ect) every once in a while. I'm thinking that we all chip in every month or bi-monthly 5 bucks or so to send a care package to our family..Is this something we could do?? let me know
ben

Thanks to Wes

Thank you Wes for helping an old lady navigate this new-fangled technology. I finally made it on the blog under my own name, not Bill's. I couldn't have done it without you.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Have we got news for you. . .

.
.
.
.
. No, we're not pregnant.


BUT. . .


WE JUST BOUGHT TICKETS TO L.A. FROM MAY 6 TO MAY 11 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Quiz:

which of the following statements was NOT uttered by our future graduate at some point during childhood?

A) "I'm good at hiding black dogs in the dark"
B) "Waaaatch meeee dieeeeeee" (in reference to a deer).
C) "When that manattee rubs up against my leg, i'll know i'm home."
D) "I once ate some cheeze whiz that wouldn't budge"

PLEASE POST YOUR ANSWERS IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. WINNER TO RECEIVE FUTURE PRIZE.

Rule of Life

In the exerpt from Peter Grieg's book "the Vow" in Relevant's Jan-Feb issue (p.34) he writes about adopting a "Rule of Life" which is defined as:

"a set of principles and practices we build into the rythmn of our daily lives, helping us to deepen our relationship with God and serve him more faithfully."

It really got me thinking about what my "rule of life" is and what it could be. If you can, read the article...what is your "rule of life"? Here's a couple quotes that have been challenging me:

"Nothing happens in the kingdom of God without intention" John Wimber

"Everybody thinks of changing humanity and nobody thinks of changing himself"

Leo Tolstoy

out

Crowder is the new Delirious?

It just seems like a while since I've blogged. Let's see...since I've blogged last, Becky is a year older, Jake is passing out awkward hugs, drank a kiddie pool sized Margarita with a lil' help from Jake (is this what inspired the Levesta hug?) Wes and sarah have been married for a year with no kids to speak of (this is also the one year anniversary of Jeff's best man rap! and Jake's Michael Jackson dance), Norm has no doubt done the YMCA or at least the crazy finger, still waiting for Debbie to learn how to turn on the computer, had dinner with a rock star, rode my 1978 single speed racing bike to the top of Glendora Mountain road, chilled pool side, and sang a solo in front of my class.
What have ya'll been up to?
Midwest gang, I'll be back on the 20th for a few days. My planner is filling up quick so make your reservations now!
I'm leading a group of wide-eyed APU students into LA for four days. So in the words of the harvest youth pastor, "Why don't you give a shout out to the big guy upstairs, what!" en serio dog.
Has anyone sent a blog invite to Gramie? "Oh my word, I'm not touching that Blog!"
Well well, I must not let the Blog distract from my studies. keep well everyone.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

happy belated birthday

to Becky from Norm and Debbie. Hope you had a wonderful birthday. Jeff and Steph, plus Caleb will be in Ca. March 24th. I know they are going to se you abd Ben, plus others. We still have snow. I'm tired of the snow. Debbie and I are going to Fla. for spring break. Wow, I am really blogging...

Jeff's better half is in!

Hi guys! So pumped about the bloggin'. Try to chime in once whenever I have a chance between poops and playtime. See you Cali peeps soon!

Love,

Steph and caleb xo

Chicago


weedyseadragon
Originally uploaded by wes gaines.
We've been having a blast in Chicago, this morning we went to the Shedd Aquarium, excellent, our favorite was the weedy sea dragon. our second favorite was hearing a very zealous father yell "LOOK AT THOSE SEAHORSES" at 100 db. the rest of the day we shopped, ate Thai, and got harrassed on the train by a bum who thought sarah talked to much on her cell phone (which is great b/c she wasn't even using her cell phone) that's all, tommorrow Sarah gets introduced to the world of IKEA. I'm getting nervous. out

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Update on Neal

Neal is coming home. He is in Kuwait being processed out. Anna anticipates he will be home in the good ole USA next Wednesday. Our prayers have been answered in asking the Lord to protect him.

we gonna party like it's your birthday

Happy Birthday Becky!

I think Becky is hilarious whether it's cutting a rug at sniper's wedding, her appreciation for absurd reality T.V. (Bachelor's in Alaska), or just hearing her say "Beeen, where's my Spanish book Beeeeen". She is driven: a marathon runner, back to school for a teaching degree, what's next??? Happy 24 to a wonderful sista. Has Ben ever found that Spanish book?

towanda wants to wish you a happy birthday, becky


towanda
Originally uploaded by sarahjgaines.
Becky, hope your birthday is far-out! thanks for watching me on the show. a star is born. xoxo. towanda

hey, beck, it's me, sarahjane. i wanted to tell you (along with our friend towanda) that i hope your 24th is fun and relaxing. as wes would say when mimicking starting over, "girlfriend, you're worth it!" i know i can always count on you for tv updates when my vcr won't record, someone to complain with about housemates' attitudes, and a good laugh now and then. hope your gift arrives in time. love you. sarahjane.

Friday, March 04, 2005

And the votes are in....

So Bill I have tallied up the votes and you are in fact my favorite father-in-law...so now i will be concocting my wildest dream for you. I am very flattered by the loving note, or blog shall I say, thank you. I am thankful for the two of you as well- we cant wait to see you guys!
peace-out
becky

WANTED

WANTED

Steve and Shae Lampi....Who?

Last seen in Mt. Plesant, Michigan.

You can run but you cant hide!

C'mon someone get a hold of them...Blog in kiddos

gees

Ben

The Big 24

Mom and I have been blessed by 3 incredible daughter-in-laws. We are confident the 4th (right Ange) will be just as incredible. As we think of Becky's 24th, we think about how through the years our love for our sons' wives have grown. Becky, we are extrememly happy and glad that we (your mother-in-law and me) can say happy birthday to you and we are so glad that you came into our family. I pray daily that my sons will be wonderful and loving husbands to their wives. If they are not, I WANT TO HEAR ABOUT IT; Ben, you and me on the front lawn, one on one. Becky, we truly hope your 24th birthday is a happy day and know that you are in our thoughts and prayers.
And, if you vote for me as your favorite father-in law, "I will make your wildest dreams come true"

Love U, Bill and Lena

Gaines/Lampi News: the BIG 24

Gaines/Lampi News: the BIG 24

How about when Becky slammed a foot -long turkey sub, bag of chips, DP, and a large yogurt mill vase of snickers smothered ice cream before going over the border to TJ 2 years ago. What a girl, Benny!
Feliz veinticuatro mi prima!



We're off to chicago for an anniversary celebration. I am 100 % positive that Sarah is my soulmate! Posted by Hello

the BIG 24

In just a few short hours, Rebecca Gaines will be turning the big 24. As she lives up the rest of her 23rd year, any comments, memories or other comments about Rebecca before she enters into the world of a 24 year old! My first memory of her during this year is that she turned 23 when we all were together in Michigan/Indiana for another big milestone in the Gaines family. What a great weekend, celebrating together!
Ben

Gaines/Lampi News: "The Other Courgars"- A Guest Column by Award Winning Sports Columist Mitch Albom

Gaines/Lampi News: "The Other Courgars"- A Guest Column by Award Winning Sports Columist Mitch Albom

YO YO YO! I'm LOvin' it! But did it compare to my 7 for 7 stint with the Covina Vine Boyz! Sweeeet!

Out. Got class! Rack em!

"The Other Courgars"- A Guest Column by Award Winning Sports Columist Mitch Albom

Last night, as the Azusa Pacific Cougars were busy celebrating their 11th league championship in the last 12 years, I was privy to sit courtside and watch another band of brothers...err...should I say pack of cougars staking their claim as the other 1st place team on campus. I'm speaking of the nine warriors led by senior swing man Andrew Gaines who make up the only undefeated 4-0 intramural basketball team. Now, with my success has come certain perks. I've camped out courtside at Cameron Indoor Arena and watched the likes of Hill, Laitner, and Battier. I've swapped sweat at Staples with Bryant and Shaq, but I must say that the raw intensity, sheer grit, and uncomprimising comraderie that I saw last night at the Cougar Dome has motivated me more than Spencer Micunek game winner at the buzzer.

Led by Gaines, last night they jumped out to an early 20-0 lead. Crisp passing, solid screens, hitting the boards like a pack of wild...cougars... these men were relentless. They may not have the look. What with all that long hair, short shorts, old-style Converse Allstars. But then again, I'm reminded of another Converse Allstar wearing team that may not have had the look, but surely had the will. Andrew played last night like Jimmy Chipwood and the rebirth Jason Williams. Behind the back passes. Cuts to the basket with reverse lay-ups. This senior knows his time is short and he's making the most of it. Towards the wanning seconds of the first half he showed sacrifice as he attempted to break up a sure fastbreak and caught a shoulder in the nose. Blood flowed freely, yet still he didn't want to come out of the game. After some coaxing from his teammates, the wounded warrior finally took a seat and applied a thick layer of gauze. Showing his senior leadership he fought back tears showing his men that this was not going to keep him down.

For my Midwest readers who no doubt are reading this 3 hours ahead of the rest, just listen. Listen for the distant roar coming from a small West Coast campus where Andrew's intramural team is sure making some noise. For those of you on the West Coast, do yourself a favor. Need some inspiration? Need a break from complaining professional millionares not too far down the road? Want to see a group of guys just playing for the love of the game? Want to see a group of guys diving into scorer's tables, and hitting the boards with bloody gauze in their nose? Then find a way to get to a game and get ready for a ride you'll not soon forget! You'll be better for it!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Sunsets and Sushi

I'm enthralled with this book by David Crowder and I think that all of you will enjoy his dry and witty sense of humor (not to mention his plethora of pictures of Nun Habits). He challenges to be clothed in worship and offers his insightful reflections on many of the Psalms. A must read! Wes, I commented on your Justice Blog. Sarah- be expecting some fine sand art coming to you in the mail!
-Abs

surfing before class

here is a link to photos of the tsunami recovered from a tourist's digital camera, very scary
click here

I recommend switching to Firefox instead of using Internet Explorer. It's free, it more secure, and has cool features like tabbing between websites and more. Download it here

I just read an excerpt from Peter Grieg's book The Vision and the Vow in the most recent issue of Relevant magazine and thought it was very good. He constructed a written out vision for the future of the church, which you can read here. But check out the whole article if you can.

don't risk it behind the wheel, check out these videos

Finally, listen to some good music by Tom Lomacchio, one of Sarah's favorites click here
I'm out- p.s. I finished my thoughts on justice below, what do you think?

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Justice

Wes, I share that sentiment. Juan hit the nail on the head...er..maybe.
But one of my biggest frustrations with the Church is their apathy towards social justice. Any reading by Jim Wallis will only enforce this thought. I love the church that I go to now (All Saints Episcopal) because of their boldness in addressing social issues.
The Church should be at the forefront of social change, shouldn't it? I mean the majority of Jesus' teachings were about the poor and he was killed for reversing the social, economic, and religious order of his day. It doesn't sound like a bunch of left wing rhetoric to me. That's all.

Justice

Quiz: who wrote, "Justice sometimes doesn't matter in a way"?

A. Martin Luther King
B. Mother Theresa
C. Ghandi
D. Juan "in a million"

If you answered D you got it!

Quickly, I've been thinking about the role of social justice in Christianity today and it seems to me that Christians ought to be leading the way in promoting justice throughout the world and surely there are a lot of Christians and orginizations which do, but on the whole it seems like a large part of the church is lagging in this area. I think the Bible shows that God is the ultimate champion of justice (Psalm 89)and he invites us to join him. The key I believe is in Micah 6:8. We are called to love mercy, act justly and to walk humbly with God. This was the essence of Jesus's ministry (see Isaiah 61). He also said that he didn't do anything he didn't see his Father doing. I think that as we partner in relationship with God our character is transformed and we are empowered to accomplish what he set out to do. The mistake of the right is to minimize our present role in God's kingdom and emphasize "saving souls" for eternity. The mistake of the left is to say that social justice is the gospel, and to emphasize issues rather than the character transforming empowerment of being in relationship with God (John 15). Dallas Willard brilliantly sorts this out in chapter 2 of The Divine Conspiracy. I'm telling you check it out. Signing off!

bloggin'

yes yes a couple of things...
Abigail, I was thinking the same thing about wonder. I was reading this story the other day that made me think of it. About two men in a garden who are each granted a wish. The one wishes to be enormous so he can travel the world with the ease of a step. So he steps to Vienna and he's so big that the Canals just look like little lines, then he steps to Africa and the beautiful rainforests just look like little green pieces of broccoli or something, and so on. The man is very disapointed. The other guy in the garden sees this and he then wishes to be made small. He then sees all the beauty that lies right before him in the garden. And he never leaves the garden again.
This just made me think as well that the world may lose wonder, but it will always have wonders. Crazy how I was just thinking that.

Which is a good transition now to the book I've been reading. Loosely related yet thoroughly profound. Sarah, here's an excerpt from that book I've been reading, Blue Like Jazz: "One of my new housemates, stacy, wants to write a story about an astronaut. in his story the astronaut is wearing a suit that keeps him alive by recycling his fluids. in the story the astronaut is working on a space station when an accident takes place, and he is cast into space to orbit the earth, to spend the rest of his life circling the globe. Stacy says this story is how he imagines hell, a place where a person is completely alone, without others and without God. after stacy told me about his story, i kept seeing it in my mind. i thought about it before i went to sleep at night. i imagined myslef looking out my little bubble helmet at blue earth, reaching toward it, closing it between my puffy white space-suit fingers, wondering if my friends were still there. in my imagination i would call to them, yell for them, but the sound would only come back loud within my helmet. through the years my hair would grow long in my helmet and gather around my forehead and fall across my eyes. because of my helmet i would not be able to touch my face with my hands to move my hair out of my eyes, so my view of earth, slowly, over the first two years, would dim to only a thin light through a curtain of thatch and beard. "i would lay there in bed thinking about stacy's story, putting myself out there in the black. and there came a time, in space, when i could not tell whether i was awake or asleep. all my thoughts mingled together because i had no people to remind me what was real and what was not real. i would punch myself in the side to feel pain, and this way i could be relatively sure i was not dreaming. within ten years i was beginning to breathe heavy through my hair and my beard as they were pressing tough against my face and had begun to curl into my mouth and up my nose. in sapce, i forgot that i was human. i did not know whether i was a ghost or an apparition or a demon thing. "after i thought about stacy's story, i lay there in bed and wanted to be touched, wanted to be talked to. i had the terrifying thought that something like that might happen to me. i thought it was just a terrible story, a painful and ugly story. stacy had delivered as accurate a description of a hell as could be calculated. and what i sad, what is very sad, is that we are proud people, and because we have sensitive egos and so many of us live our lives in front of our television, not having to deal with real people who might hurt us or offend us, we float along on our couches like astronauts moving aimlessly through the milky way, hardly interacting with other human beings at all"

Isn't that pretty amazing? You've got to read this book, everybody.

ANd Jake at 29, how do you like the music? Pretty hip, huh? Well I've got a lot more if you want it. Andrew at 22, looking to graduate and dive into the 'real world'. I've alerady had the Dad health care talk, I'm looking for apartmetns and jobs, I think I'll be okay.
Oh my, well this is getting rather lengthy and I've got to read up for class. Have a good day family. And if you're looking for real estate in Florida, I think I might know an O.B. boy to help you out. Paz!

As I learn how to blog...

I realized this morning that if you choose a larger number than 5 from the little drop down screen you can see all the entries. Also, if you just want to read each entry in succession before you write, click "view blog" up on the tab bar. To write then, you'd click back to "posting" to write your blog o' the day! (just a little saint patrick's cheer for the upcoming holiday).

Lena, holy moments are good moments. I think you have to create your own blog name for it not to say bill, otherwise it'll always say bill on your post. did wes send you an invitation? that's where you sign up with your own name and password.

cheers. sarahjane.

Holy Moment

At the risk of being made fun of for conducting a "holy moment", I share from E.M. Bounds what I read this morning: "That the true apostolic preacher must have the prayers of others- good people to give to his ministry its full quota of success, Paul is a preeminent example. He asks, he covets, he pleads in a impassionate way for the help of all God's saints, he knew that in the spiritual realm as elsewhere, in union there is strength; that the consecration and aggregation of faith, desire, and prayer increased the volume of spiritual force until it became overwhelming and irresistible in its power. Units of prayer combined, like drops of water, make an ocean that defies resistance." Just a reminder to pray for your pastors.
This is mom, even though the post will say "Bill" I haven't figured out how to blog on!

steve madd's, man

You must be stylin' in those steve madd's, jake. i was wondering what the deal with the pixies and the shins was--then i read on to see that andrew supplied the music, ah hah! and, do you like it? (or, "might you like them at 29"). it's kind of like, i might like them in a house, i might like them with a mouse.

andrew, hope you are enjoying that blue like jazz. isn't that nuts that matthew wilkinson just reccommended that book to you on sunday? coincidence? i think not.

a little bird told me two things, 1) i heard there's another birthday around the corner. 2) i hear someone in this family took a sick day to go to disneyland. (or disneyworld, whichever).
hmmm.....anyone have any guesses?