Monday, September 16, 2013

homemade toys:: the malibu grill

I have posted several times on this blog about my love for the Malibu grill-
Jane and I decided to make a playset of it! you can click on the photos to enlarge them-

this is a wide shot that shows how Jane decorated the walls with stickers to look like Malibu's walls filled with sports memorabilia:

this shows how Jane made arcade games out of legos, how we made a supply door just like Malibu's, and the big-screen tvs that we made out of foam-

this shows how we replicated Malibu's menu wall and ordering counter-

this is our favorite spot to sit and watch sports- on the long red seats in the main room-
we even tried to match the flooring-

this shows how we made short tables, and tall tables- since Malibu has both-

we love Malibu and all of their workers! and we love calico critters!
God is love.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

homemade toys:: the romantic fancy restaurant

Jane and I have been wanting to make a fancy restaurant for awhile now, here is what we came up with!

the floor is a foam board covered in shelf liner. we made the corner booths out of blocks of wood covered in sticky fabric. the walls are a display board (for science projects) that has been cut down to size. we found some stickers and paper at Michael's for the walls that we attached on with spray glue. the lights are $2 Christmas lights that are poking out from the back. we got the tables from the dollar store...for a dollar each. the rug is a mouse pad that we had. all of the rest is stuff from other playsets that we had.

there is a kitchen off to the side that isn't pictured.
my kid loves to create these little scenes- and I love to help too. this one wasn't expensive at all.

being a dad is fun.

funny conversation, 9/13

last summer at camp, I was standing in line for lunch next to a student friend of mine, and I wanted to start a conversation with her- so I gave her one of my conversation starters: I said, "so- tell me what would your dream job would be?"

she said, "I've always wanted to be a sports bra tester."

I paused. I thought. I asked,

"did you just say that when you grow up you want to be a sports bra tester?!"

she looked embarrassed and a little annoyed and said, "no. I want to be a sports BROADCASTER."

"oh. yeah. that makes sense. what sport?"

things between us have been awkward ever since.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

MCRD story

When I was in high school, my youth group would go on choir tour every summer. We all had matching outfits, and we sang and had choreography. It was a big production with lights, a stage and trucks.

We performed in churches, inner city parks, juvenile halls, we even got to perform at Disneyland and Catalina island. One of the coolest crowds we sang for was the marines in San Diego. Before 9/11, we got to go to the marine bases and sing for the new marines in their chapels and even out in the fields. My favorite was this giant auditorium at the marine corps recruitment depot. It was full of thousands of marines, all shouting and hoo-rah-ing.

At the end of every concert, my youth pastor gave a short talk to the crowd. He had a special one for the marines that always got them fired up. We always did two performances for the marines, my youth pastor would do one of the talks and the intern would do the other one.

As years went by, it was finally my turn to be the intern. As the choir tour got closer, I looked forward to the thought of speaking to those marines. I bought my first book for a sermon. It was a short history of the marines. I learned all about them. Their history is fascinating. On the night of the concert, my youth pastor came to me and asked, "are you ready?" I was ready. I had my notes my bible and I was prayed up.

After the songs I addressed this crowd of thousands of guys. It felt strangely comfortable to be with them. I talked about the marine motto: semper fidelis. Latin for always faithful. These guys were amped and shouting. I talked about the many legendary marines that I learned about in my book, and they knew them all. Then I talked about what semper fi means. It means that you are willing to travel to distant shores and to leave your blood there; that you live for others, and that you never quit until the job is done. It means that you never leave your friends dead or wounded on the battlefield. I have never, ever seen a crowd that big, that riled up. They were standing, shouting, jumping and hooting. And then I hit them with my point: Jesus is always faithful. He never leaves us. He died for us, He never quits.

After my talk I said, "we sang songs for you, and now we want to hear YOUR song!" Those thousands of marines stood at attention and shouted, "FROM THE HALLS OF MONTEZUMA TO THE SHORES OF TRIPOLI..." They shouted out the marine anthem. The force of their voices almost knocked me over and the sound was deafening.

That was the first time I ever walked off of a platform and thought, "wow. that went over!" It will always be one of my craziest memories.

After my talk, my youth pastor invited me to give the second talk too. The marine chaplain asked me if he could get a copy of my sermon! And I really started to believe that someday I could give more talks. Lots more talks, lots more people.

Jesus is semper fi. And He has been always faithful to me for all these years. Hoo-rah!

God is love.