Monthly Archives: March 2011

Zuno’s Pick

If Zuno and I run early in the morning, we sometimes see a bunny. Zuno must have been thinking of bunnies today, because he’s chosen Beatrix Potter’s A Child’s Treasury of Beatrix Potter. The beloved story of Peter Rabbit is recounted here as well as eight others like Jemima Puddle-Duck and Benjamin Bunny. Parents, if you are curious about the author, the movie, Miss Potter, is a treat.

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Cross Training

Do you like hot, fresh-from–the-oven bread? Our family enjoys cooking together and when a school holiday grants us some extra time, we make cinnamon rolls. Our kitchen feels warm and cozy and the fragrance of cinnamon and baking bread snake through the house. Powdered sugar dusts the countertops as we stir up sweet icing that drips from the cinnamon rolls onto our fingers. Yum! We don’t discriminate, though. We like bread of all kinds—garlic bread with pasta, sourdough bread for paninis, cornbread with soup, and hot tortillias for soft tacos. These carbs sustain us while we run, swim, bike, dance, and play baseball. Veggies alone don’t cut it and who would choose broccoli over a piece of hot, buttered bread? Jesus knew there was something special, something essential, about bread. In John 6:48-51, Jesus describes himself as the bread of life:

“I am the bread of life. Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, yet they died. But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”

Honestly, bread is not something I spend a lot of time thinking about, yet not a day goes by without my consuming it in some form: toast for breakfast, a sandwich at lunch, or rolls at dinner. It is a staple in my diet. I can’t do without it. Jesus wants to be a staple too, the staple. Jesus promises more than energy to get through the day; He promises life, to be living bread which a man may eat and not die. So how’s your diet? Are you a Bread-eater? Does He sustain you?  Are you feeding on Him or is your stomach empty and growling? Pull up a chair. There’s room at the table for you.

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Gayle’s Gable

The format of Gayle’s Gable changes from that of a reading club to one similar to Zuno’s Pick. Gayle’s Gable spotlights my family’s favorite novels for older readers. Please share your favorites.

My youngest son enjoys The Redwall Chronicles by Brian Jacques. Redwall is the first book in the series and many follow. These stories fall in the fantasy genre, but action, adventure, riddles, and quests abound. The mice of Redwall Abbey with their forest friends, the badgers of Salamandastron, river otters, hares, and squirrels, form a solid team of good guys, while ruthless sea rats, slippery ferrets, sly foxes, and cruel wildcats round out the crew of villains. Jacques provides a banquet of stories rivaling the famous Redwall feasts. You won’t go away hungry.

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Gayle’s Gable

Did you enjoy the book? I love the change in the boys’ relationship as they move from contempt for one another to respect and friendship. Jemmy realizes there are blessings in being the whipping boy, like learning “to read, write and do sums.” Prince Horace discovers his nickname of Prince Brat and realizes good character and a commitment to duty are important qualities for a leader. Which was your favorite boy?

Next week, you’ll see a change in Gayle’s Gable. I’ll recommend a favorite book or author each week. Please share your favorites with me.

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Cross Training

Let’s spend some time thinking about heavenly things today. Grab your Bible and turn to Revelation 4. Revelation is the last book in the Bible, so turn to the back. In this chapter, John, one of Jesus’disciples and the one who wrote John, 1 John, 2 John and 3 John, and Revelation, is having a vision of God’s throne room in heaven,. Read it slowly and get a picture in your head. Draw it if you want. Join your voice with the four living creatures: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD God Almighty.” He is worthy of your praise and worship.

Fitness Tip: Top Ten Food of the day is soy. I like chocolate soy milk and mix it with regular skim milk for my daily chocolate milk fix.

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Zuno’s Pick

Zuno’s pick this week is Olivia and the Missing Toy by Ian Falconer. Can you figure out Olivia’s favorite color? Who is the terrible villain who has taken the missing toy? Zuno appreciates the forgiveness Olivia shows at the end of the story, not that Zuno has ever been in trouble himself. Do you have a favorite story about your pet getting in trouble? Zuno can take food off a plate on the kitchen countertop without moving the plate or touching any unwanted food already on the plate.

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Cross Training

In the novel, The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, the hero, Percy Jackson, finds himself in two worlds—his normal life, much like yours and mine, and the world of ancient Greece, complete with gods and goddesses. The mix of these two makes for a great story, but do you realize, we as Christ-followers face the same thing? Look at Colossians 3: 1, 2 (NIV):

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your heart on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.

For Christ-followers, we have dual citizenship. Our home is in heaven, but for now, we live here. Paul reminds us that our life isn’t just about the here and now. He challenges us to look towards home (heaven) and live like we would there. It’s like we have a foot in both worlds. So, what can you do to think about heavenly things this week?

Read your Bible—every day.

Listen to music that praises or talks about God.

Look at the things God has made. Think about them and thank Him for them.

Talk to God often and about everything.

Set your heart and mind on things above. What do you think heaven is like? Ask God about it.

Fitness Tip: Today’s Top Ten Food is anything whole grain. That covers cereals, rice, pasta, and breads. You can add alot of flavor to brown rice by cooking it with chicken broth instead of water. Many pastas offer a half and half variety that may be easier to get down your kids instead of the 100% whole wheat. Try someting new this week.

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