Catching Up

It was a busy summer and I didn't manage to keep up with blogging, so here are some pictures of the highlights.

In June, Abby went to the zoo for the first time. We spent several hours there, and she loved it!

She also received her first major haircut (from me). It turned out a lot shorter than I expected.

In July, she started stacking everything she saw.

We also discovered a cool free water park in Wilsonville.  

In August we went on a church camping trip. It would have been great, except for all the rain and the freezing cold nights!

This is Abby just before her first airplane ride (piloted by her dad). When we got in the air she wasn't so sure about the whole thing, but by the time we got back down she was giggling. When asked if she had fun she said yes, but when asked if she wanted to go again she quickly said no!

Abby's second birthday was August 20th. Instead of having several different parties with different sides of the family, we decided to have one big party at our house. Dustin and I spent several hours making the cake. It was supposed to be fairy wings, but it looked just like a butterfly!

Not much happened in September, and when it did we didn't have the camera. We spent one afternoon picking prunes. We picked 90 pounds, but had to throw out about 6 because a dog came and peed in our box! I also managed to fall out of a tree but no damage was done. All of our September pictures are of Dustin and Abby being their usual odd selves. Like father like daughter,  right? 

In between all of these happenings was a lot of gardening, canning, and dehydrating! I'll be doing a separate post for October because it was a big month for Abby and me.

Dustin Radford is changing his e-mail address!

Hi all!
Please note that I've changed my e-mail address to!

Faith Stimulus

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." -Matthew 6:19-21

Most of us will soon receive a check in the mail from the U.S. government. A lot of people are already planning how they will spend it, and some have even already spent it! The great majority are using that money to buy something they’ve been wanting… a new TV, some home improvements, exercise equipment… the list is endless. Whatever they may buy, I confidently assume that 99% of people are spending that money on their own wants and desires, perhaps masked thinly as “needs.” Few of us actually need this unexpected windfall to meet regular expenses or necessary emergencies.

A few days ago the blog “Desiring God” inspired me with this idea. If you are a follower of Jesus, I challenge you to use the entire sum of money you will receive as “economic stimulus” for God’s glory. Donate it to an orphanage, buy meals for the homeless, send it to a missionary, or buy Bibles with it and hand them out door to door. “Store up treasures in heaven.” It’s an investment that can’t go wrong.

Above and beyond the praise our Lord will receive from the beneficiaries of your giving, you will most likely have a more personal chance to bring Him glory. Within the next few months the question, “What are you spending your check on?” will become a hot topic around water coolers and in break rooms across the country. This may be a chance for opening the door to share your faith with someone who would never listen otherwise.

This is an opportunity for you to show your freedom from the love of money and materialism. I have been thinking of the people who will read this, and how each one of you will react. If you have a platform, a pulpit, or a blog, (and I know some of you do) I ask you to encourage others as well. Give glory to God!

Time flies...

We have gotten settled here in Canby, and really enjoy the town. There is a park down the street, and the library is a little further. There is even a grocery store within walking distance. Dustin enjoys the shorter commute. It only takes about 6 minutes for him to get to work.

Abby is now 20 months old and speaking in full sentences. Sometimes it almost seems as if you can carry on a real conversation with her. I can't believe our baby is now a toddler. The only quiet time around here is when she sleeps. We recently moved her into a toddler bed and she loves it; she has actually started napping again! She really enjoys playing outside in the dirt. Ladybugs and worms fascinate her, and one day I caught her stretching a worm like a rubber band. She asked about eating it, but luckily she didn't try. Abby also enjoys helping in the garden with the planting and weeding. However, she is going through a phase where she loves to sit on everything, so we have quite a few smashed flowers.

Our garden area is much larger this year. We also have some berries, grapes, and fruit trees. At the rate we're going, we may finish the first round of weeding by the end of summer!

We went to the tulip festival in Woodburn a few weeks ago. If you've never gone, I recommend it. Especially if you have kids. There is a huge area for kids to play, with slides and inflatable bouncing things. There is also a cow train you can ride on to see the tulips. It was an incredibly bumpy ride, but lots of fun. Abby had a great time. She went down the big slide several times, climbing up the ladder by herself. By the time we left, she was so exhausted that she dozed on Dustin's shoulders on the way to the car.

We are starting to think about camping. Abby is big enough that we won't be able to sleep in the bus like we did last year, so we'll have to try a tent. It should be an interesting experience. If we get enough practice, we should have it down by the time our church camp-out happens in August!