Each member of our family is so different, like individual components of a symphony. But, like a symphony, each part is important to the overall structure and sound of the piece. We all work together to make a beautiful sound...our family. Just as the Lord knit us together in the womb, He is now knitting us together as a family, for His glory, outside the womb.

Menu Tabs

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Baby Mohawks

 Look at how sweet these baby birds look.  Don't you love their feathery mohawks?!  It's amazing how quickly they change (just like our babies).:)
Look at this adorable mohawk on 2-month-old Finn!  It has filled in quite nicely.
This guy is peaking his eye open.  I think he wants us to leave him alone.  Okay.  Rest well. 
Maston Baby Bird Watch 2011 to be continued...

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Baby Bird Watch, continue

So, two of our babies have left the nest for the night, and I already miss them.  Cadence and Finn went to Grandma and Grandpa's house for a sleepover tonight.  They were so excited!  They packed their suitcases two days ago and have been pulling them all over the house ever since.  Aria doesn't know what to do with all this attention, quiet atmosphere, and free reign of ALL the toys.  She even got a bath, all to herself.  What a luxury!  She seems to be living it up, though, and I'm sure Cadence and Finn are living it up at the Grandparent's house.
It's funny, when I only had Cadence, I felt like I was always busy.  But now, when I only have Aria, I feel like I've forgotten what to do with just one.  I'm used to having the other kids around to make noise and entertain each other.  It feels weird.  I re-watched Cadence's dance recital video twice, already, today.  It's a good one.  I highly recommend re-visiting it.:)  Cadence also had a end of the year preschool performance where she sang a couple songs with her classmates.  I'm not exaggerating, I could hear Cadence singing over the other kids.  It was wonderful!

Anyway, back to Maston Baby Bird watch 2011!  Today, the hatchlings have loss more of their down and their beaks are more definable.  You can also see the dark spots where their eyes are.  So cool!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Coo coo ca-choo, Mrs. ROBIN(son)

2 years old

Here's my first baby bird!  Isn't she beautiful?!  I think so. I love her freckles under her eyes.
4 years old


Hatchling #2...a bit more carnivorous.

Our youngest hatchling

I went out to water our hanging flower "bird" pot today (being careful not to water the nest itself), so that those precious baby birds will continue to have coverage from predators, and I was greeted not by the expected little eggs, but by a plethora of fuzzy little heads and wings!

I'm not sure when these little guys hatched, but I'm thinking it was recently.  I couldn't make out their heads, but I could see some wings pulsing in and out as the little fuzzballs slept.  I don't think they can open their eyes yet.



I will have to keep a watch on them to see how they grow and develop, making sure not to get too close because I don't want to cause their mom to abandon them by making them smell like me.

Matthew 6:25-26 "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink, nor about your body, what you shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more  value than they?" 
Maston Baby Bird Watch 2011 is on!!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Jewels for Jesus

This past Saturday, I had the privilege of sharing a devotional at our Women's Fellowship meeting.    
I have always wanted to dye my hair pink, so I got pink strands.
We were learning how to put sparkly hair strands in our hair, so I chose a diamond themed devotional.
I made each lady a bookmark with a "Diamond" acronym on the back (see the end of this blog).

What is your engagement story?  Brad and I had been dating for about 3 months when he took me to a fancy dinner at the Broker, in Denver.  Of course, it was a wonderful dinner.  Afterwards, we drove back up to Fort Collins and were walking around Old Town.  When we passed in front of Austin's restaurant, where we had our first date, Brad got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.  Yes!  Then, we headed to the wine bar next door, Ciao Vino's, to celebrate with champagne and strawberries.  It was a wonderful night and has been a wonderful 8 and half years.

Jer. 9:7 "...I will refine and test them..."
Isa 1:25 "...I will thoroughly purge away your dross."

Fire is always used for purging, for burning up the impurities found in precious metals and stones.  Let's take a look at how diamonds are made, a brief geography lesson.:)

  • they are under incredible pressure and intense heat deep within the Earth's surface.
  • they are carried to the surface through volcanic eruptions via kimberlite magmas.
  • both diamond and graphite (which is the stable form of carbon at the Earth's surface) are made of carbon.
  • in contrast, diamond is the hardest gem while graphite is the softest.  Odd?
  • to prevent diamond from converting to graphite, they must be transported to the Earth's surface extremely fast.
  • diamond hardness comes from the carbon atoms being linked together in a 3-dimensional network.
  • whereas, graphite atoms are linked into loose sheets, sliding past each other easily
  • when cutting, diamond dust must be used to cut diamonds since they are the hardest known substance.
  • diamonds are cut precisely to maximize the brilliance and fire (the rainbows and glints of color) of the stone.  the placement of each facet around the diamond and the table on top are carefully measured and cut to take advantage of the prism effect and let the diamond sparkle.
  • the presence of any blemishes, flaws, scratches or nicks effect the diamonds clarity.
How is Christ like a Diamond?
  • He underwent incredible pain and pressure to bring us a beautiful gift...salvation.
  • He is omnipotent; having infinite and unlimited power.
  • He is the only thing strong enough to "cut" us.
  • the Trinity is linked together in One.
How are we like diamonds?
  • we have times when we feel like we're under incredible pressure and intense heat.
  • many of us go through some turbulent journeys that feel like volcanic eruptions.
  • we are made up of the same stuff as non-believers, but held together and refined by God.
  • Christ cleansed us of all our impurities by dieing on the cross.
  • Phil. 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."  In Christ, we become mighty, whereas we were soft and weak before.
  • We are cut by the Master Craftsman to sparkle and reflect the light of Christ to the maximum.
  • Our impurities and sins effect the scale of our clarity, but God's refining fire can purge away our dross.
engagement ring
sweet 16 ring
Diamonds can also be an heirloom that you pass down from generation to generation.  My engagement ring diamond is Brad's grandma Maston's.  I never met her, but the diamond feels special and loved.  My mom gave me a diamond ring on my sweet 16 that her mom had given her and my grandma's mom had given her.  I'm looking forward to passing that on as well. 

How much more important, though, is our faith and salvation to pass down?  The definition of heritage is "something that comes or belongs to one by reason of birth; an inherited lot or portion."  When we believe that Christ is our Lord and Savior and accept His salvation, we are born again.  Jesus Christ is our heritage to be passed down from generation to generation.

How can we pass down this inheritance?
  • allow Christ to "cut" the lines in you the way He as our Maker wants.  Then, we will reflect His light to the maximum in our lives.
  • maintenance.  Don't forget to "clean" yourself, as I've done with my ring.  I have let gunk and dirt build up around my diamond, making the shine and sparkle dull.  Regular "cleaning/maintenance" will keep dirt from building up in us, allowing Christ to be reflected in our lives.
  • even if we've let some dirt build up, we can always come to the Lord and He will shine us up.  He will do the work.  We just have to be willing to sit and rest in Him and let Him chip away all that dirt.  He will never neglect us, as I've done with my diamond.  John 15:4 "Abide in Me and I in you.  As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me."
My mom just recently, within the past few years, got a diamond ring.  She didn't have an engagement ring.  It's never too late to become a diamond.  God's love and salvation is eternal and unbound.  It is a precious gem that He is giving to us for free, transforming us into Diamond Reflections of Christ's love, glory, grace and mercy.
  • D- Delight In The Lord
  • "Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart." Psalm 37:4
  • I- Increase In Love
  • "And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men,
  • A- Abide In Christ
  • "I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing." John 15:5
  • M- Minister To Others
  • "Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality." Romans 12:13
  • O- Obey God's Word
  • "And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments." 1 John 2:3
  • N- Never Give Up
  • "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 12:1,2
  • D- Die To Self
  • "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." Galatians 2:20

Dear Lord, we are diamonds in the rough and need You and Your sacrifice on the cross to make us shine.  I pray that You would help all of us to be in regular, daily communion/relationship with You so that we can feel like Your beautiful and precious treasures and sparkle for You daily.  We love You and thank You for Your death and resurrection so that we can one day be in the presence of our Master Craftsman.  Amen.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Robin's Nest

Today, amidst the rainy and dreary day, a bright and joyful surprise awaited us!  Isn't this a lovely hanging plant?  My parents gave it to us.  Well, their is a hidden beauty and treasure inside.
Brad was standing outside, looking at the rain, and I asked him to move the planter out into the rain to drink up the water.  As he went to move it, he noticed this cute little nest with 5 eggs.  At first, he thought, "I didn't know they sold these plants with decorative nests and eggs.".  Then, he realized, it's real!  A beautiful Robin chose to build her nest and lay her eggs in our plant!  I am so honored!
Look at how perfect the nest is.  It's a work of art.  Aren't those eggs amazing?  We had noticed some Robins hanging out around this plant for awhile, but we just thought they liked sitting on it because it was sheltered under the overhang.  Surprise, surprise!  They were building a family and a safe spot to grow them!  Wow!
I hope they stay safe there from any storms or predators that might come along.  I'm glad to know that the nest is there, so that I will water around it.  Don't worry, we didn't end up putting the plant out in the rain.  We returned it to it's safe place under the overhang and will leave it alone, excited to know that those precious little eggs are there!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Tiny Dancer

Here are Finn and I, waiting for Cadence to dance!

Here is Cadence at her spring recital.  She was a beautiful dancer!  You can't tell from the video, but she was singing along with the music.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Zoo Day

We woke up yesterday, saw the beautiful weather outside, and decided it was a perfect day to go to the zoo!  Woo-hoo!  I love zoo trips!  

Cadence loves to pose for the camera, so I got plenty of pictures of her.  Don't you like her zoo outfit?  She put it all together herself.  

Finn wanted to wear matching hats with daddy.  Finn wanted to see sheep and Cadence really wanted to ride the train (which we did at the end).  

As soon as we pulled into the zoo parking lot Cadence said, "Grandpa used to take me to the zoo."  She misses her Grandpa dates.  We ate our lunch by the seals, my favorite.  They were poking their heads in and out of the water for us while we enjoyed our packed lunches.  Finn was great at making all the animal sounds for us.  He's got a talent!  

Aria was content to stroll around and look at everything, so I'll take that as a sign that she liked it.  We are looking forward to several more trips to the zoo this summer, hopefully meeting up with friends and cousins.

Going To The Zoo

Words and Music by Tom Paxton

Daddy's taking us to the zoo tomorrow, 
Zoo tomorrow, zoo tomorrow; 
Daddy's taking us to the zoo tomorrow, 
We can stay all day.

We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo;
How about you, you, you?
You can come too, too, too.
We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo.

See the elephant with the long trunk swingin',
Great big ears and long trunk swingin',
Snuffin' up peanuts with the long trunk swingin';
We can stay all day.


See all the monkeys scritch scritch scratchin',
Jumpin' all around and scritch scritch scratchin',
Hangin' by their long tails scritch scritch scratchin';
We can stay all day.


Big black bear, all a huff huff a-puffin';
Coat's too heavy, he's huff huff a-puffin',
Don't get too near the huff huff a-puffin',
Or you won't stay all day.


Seals in the pool all honk honk honkin',
Catchin' fish and honk honk honkin',
Little seals honk honk honkin'; (high pitched voice)
We can stay all day.


(Slower tempo)
We stayed all day and we're gettin' sleepy,
Sittin' in the car gettin' sleep sleep sleepy,
Home already and we're sleep sleep sleepy,
We have stayed all day.

[Cho: (alternate)]
We've been to the zoo, zoo, zoo;
So have you, you, you.
You came too, too, too,
We're been to the zoo, zoo, zoo.

Momma's taking us to the zoo tomorrow,
Zoo tomorrow, zoo tomorrow;
Momma's taking us to the zoo tomorrow,
We can stay all day.


Owlet Party!

Our little Owlet, Aria, turned 1 last week, but we had her birthday party just this past Saturday.
It was such a joy to have our family up to celebrate this beautiful little girl!
My inspiration for the owl themed party started with these little cupcakes right here.  I saw them in my Family Fun magazine and wanted to make them for her party.

Sam was showing us her ostrich impression, which isn't an owl, but is still a bird.  I appreciate her enthusiasm!
Even our lovely guests got into the owl theme and bought Aria some wonderful owl presents.  I guess she's going to like owls now!

Aria loves her granny and grandma!
From there, our owl theme expanded and grew into...

a pinata,

owl barrets for the girls and a finger puppet for Finn,

stuffed owl party favors,

and owl party bags.

In the party bags and pinata we had Tootsie Roll pops, because the wise old owl always asks, "How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll pop?".
Pugsley needed a party and sun break

Other snacks included chips, yogurt and chocolate covered pretzels and pretzel M&M's.  BBQ chef Brad was cooking up hot dogs, turkey dogs, polish sausage, hamburgers and turkey burgers to perfection.  We had plenty of drinks and delicious fruit salad.  Yummy!  I definitely wasn't counting my weight watcher's points that day.

Present time!

Cousin Love

Water fun!


I had a lot of fun planning for the party and making all the favors and decorations.  I can honestly say, though, that I am happy to finally have had the party, had a lot of fun and not have to do anymore party preparations until the next birthday.

I moved some of Aria's party decorations into her room to enjoy longer.  See the pompoms? I just couldn't bring myself to thrown it all away, yet.

Happy first year, owlet Aria!