Happy 25th Birthday, Jesse!

These three are close buddies

Happy Birthday, Jesse! We’re grateful for you, your love for Jesus, faithfulness to share the Gospel, work ethic, and love for the family.

Jesse enjoys studying God’s Word and besides his morning quiet time, he can often be found in the evenings and on Sunday afternoons doing more studying. He truly values a solid foundation which is only through Jesus.

Happy Birthday! We pray you continue to grow even more in the Lord and pursuing Him.

Jesse loves his nieces and nephews
Jesse on Uncompahgre Peak pointing out something below

“Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example
of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity,
in spirit, in faith, in purity.”
1 Timothy 4:12

Feeding on God’s Word

A mom beginning to schedule planned to awake at 6:30 a.m., but struggled to rise to her alarm. However, when her hungry baby cried at 5:45 a.m., without hesitation she went to feed him and enjoyed the earlier start to her morning. 

There are two lessons in this situation. First, shouldn’t we be like those sweet infants who wake up early crying for their milk except that our cries would be for the sincere milk of the Word?

Second, while you wouldn’t ignore the cries of a hungry baby early in the morning, might you ignore the alarm clock going off to get you up for your time with the Lord? Might you decide you need a little more sleep, turn it off, and roll over?

What are you hungry for first thing in the morning? What does it take to get you up to spend time with Jesus?

Trusting in Jesus,

“As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk
of the word, that ye may grow thereby” (1 Peter 2:2). 

Melanie Maxwell’s Pick for An Extra Curricula Filler

Sometimes it’s nice to have a productive filler for homeschool kids, and when I asked Melanie what a favorite pick was for the prior school year, here’s her answer.

The Never Bored Kid Books!

(Titus2’s Amazon Affiliate links are in this post, above and below: see our privacy policy.)

With dot-to-dots, puzzles, riddles, word games, and more, there are plenty of things to encourage kids in their learning skills. As with all things, one must use discernment. If Melanie comes to a page that doesn’t meet what they’d like for their kids to do (i.e. magic or scary themes), she’ll just tear it out.

The Never Bored Kid Books might be a good addition to your homeschool day.


“O Lord, open thou my lips;
and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise.”
Psalm 51:15

Cleaning Out the Freezer

Sometimes our freezer gets stuffed with odds and ends so we have a clean out gathering. The other night, Anna, Mary, Sarah, and I pulled all those odds and ends from the freezer and had a “picking” party. We looked at each item and decided what it could be used for and who would make it. 

We decided to save the following for easy pull-out-of the freezer meals:

  • hamburgers
  • sloppy joe meat
  • pulled bbq pork

We put most of what we found in a soup that Anna, our master soup maker produced. This included:

  • leftover cut up pork chops
  • steak chunks
  • leftover stir fry
  • pork broth
  • beef broth
  • onion scraps
  • frozen chopped celery
  • a bag of stew vegetables
  • tomato sauce

We had meat and broth for a fried rice meal that Mary volunteered to make although she hasn’t made that before but said she would learn how. She also took the chorizo sausage we had gotten from our grocery store on a Free Friday Download, corn, and brown rice that she was going to make into a small casserole.

We found two single-serving meals, which was perfect since Jesse, Anna, and Mary were headed for a conference the next week, and those meals were ones Sarah could eat while they were away.

We find labeling our frozen items invaluable. When we put something in the freezer, we know we will remember what it is. However after several months in there, when it is pulled out sometimes we don’t know what it is—if it isn’t labeled!

Trusting in Jesus,

“Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store” (Deuteronomy 28:5). 

Random Life from Ministry to Mountains to Home Life

God has been so gracious to us these past seven weeks since our past Random Life. When the girls came home, we jumped into County Fair ministry the next week, and things continued a whirl with things we had going. Colorado truly was a beautiful break from the normal busyness to be together as a family.

Now with summer at a close, we look forward to what God has in store for our autumn season.


Anna and Mary went early to the fair that Saturday to let the kids have some hands-on practice doing balloons.
A young man reciting the 10 commandments
A sweet treat at the fair on a precious break–the girls had few of those. Neat part was it was nearly given to us from their 4H frequent flyers.
Proclaim Day at the end of the summer Bible Bee study
Taking the test (with one of the aunts in the room as the observer)
Arnold likes shoes
Benji trying out a walker
Sweet times
Water balloons on aunties’ playtime
Dad’s birthday–don’t you love this picture one of the little girls drew? Look at those eyes!
Axton with Grandma time
This adorable family taking a walk together
Ruthie has become a pro at the monkey bars.
Nathan took his kids out for a pre-first-day-of-school breakfast.
Lots of summer birthdays.
In Colorado, I took Mom’s pictures. We battled mosquitos. 🙂
Nothing like working on my book with gorgeous mountain views!
We girls took two hikes together. This one was from the opposite side of the valley, so we got gorgeous views of Lake City both hikes.
Saturday work project
John is discussing possible options for fixing our sticking patio door.
Cleaning vehicles after our trip
Watching Calia and Kyle so Joseph and Elissa could celebrate their anniversary

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace,
whose mind is stayed on thee:
because he trusteth in thee.”
Isaiah 26:3

Scripture Memory With Little Children, Part 3

Joshua and me doing Bible Bee Summer Study

Part 1 and Part 2 here if you haven’t read them. You’re hearing from Anna Marie again on her Bible Memorization series: practical encouragement on hiding God’s Word.

I had fully intended to write part 3 shortly following the others; however, first trimester of pregnancy, life as a mom, and starting homeschool took over! But here I am, back to tell you how we choose, keep track of, and review our verses.
First, a brief recap:

  • Keep Dad and Mom inspired (If you haven’t already, I recommend quickly reading this free ebook download titled Whatever It Takes, from Scripture Memory Fellowship)
  • Listen to an audio Bible
  • Read personally and as a family
  • Repeat frequently
  • Sing Scripture (such as this: Amazon affiliate link which blesses the Titus2 ministry. See Titus2’s privacy policy.)
  • Write it out
  • Motivate (with a celebration, event such as Scriptorium or Bible Bee, etc.)

There are three main ways we choose passages:
1. Christopher sometimes chooses a passage for us to memorize that will meet a current character need in our family, such as Colossians 4:6,  Ephesians 4:31-32, or Philippians 2:13-14.
2. We have been working through a catechism-type question answered with a Scripture verse, that was in our Christ-Centered Curriculum lesson guide. Things such as “Who is God?” (Jeremiah 10:10) or “Name the 3 Persons of the Godhead” (1 John 5:7), etc. It starts with God, goes through creation, Christ, Christian life, and more.
3. This year we participated in the National Bible Bee Summer Study (which was excellent!) so we had two passages each week to learn with that. When we share at a Scriptorium, we choose a passage (or passages) from the Scriptorium list we want to do and then work on that as a family.

Sharing verses with a friend from church

I don’t have a perfect system for keeping track of what we have memorized. I’ve started a Google Doc and intended to add each passage to it as we go, but I’ve struggled to be consistent with that. What has worked for me the best is to write them out on index cards and keep them in a box (I got an inexpensive index card box at Walmart), then as part of our routine we have fifteen minutes of verse review where I cycle through the cards we have learned. We don’t get through them all each day, but when we are doing it regularly I know we’ll be covering them all over the course of a few days.

Joshua found this to be a good memorizing spot!

The children enjoy doing our review in Bible Bee format, where I say their name, they go stand by the fireplace, then recite the passage I give them. For instance, “Ruthanne, please recite Colossians 4:6.” She replies, “Colossians 4:6. Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man. Colossians 4:6.” We all clap, then she sits down, and I say the next child’s name. Saying the reference before and after the verse is required for Bible Bee, and practically speaking, it does help us all remember the references better so we incorporate that.

Right now we are finishing memorizing 2 Timothy 2 as a family for the Scriptorium in St. Louis coming up on September 14th. In this process, I’ve been reminded again of the power of listening. Ruthanne and Lydia have wanted to listen to the chapter (I set it to repeat) during their afternoon quiet playtime, and I was surprised when Lydia started quoting the chapter and went several verses beyond what we have actually “worked on.” Granted, it wasn’t word perfect, but when they are that familiar with it, they pick it up rapidly. Just an encouragement to you parents to keep that audio Scripture going for your little ones!
Speaking of the Scriptorium—This is short notice, but if you’re in that area and want to share a chapter, there are still some available to sign up for—several less than twenty verses. We have been blessed by the time of fellowship and edification around the Word at Scriptoriums in the past and would enjoy meeting you there!
God bless you,
Anna Marie

“Thy hands have made me and fashioned me:
give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments.”
Psalm 119:73