Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter Weekend 2016

Another holiday in the books.  In the last five months we have celebrated Thanksgiving, Tanner's birthday, Christmas, Dillan's birthday,  little holidays like Valentine's and St. Patricks Day and now Easter, all without Brandon.  It's hard.  I'm doing my best to make great memories for the boys.  I am trying so hard to stand in as both mom and dad.  I'm growing weary; mentally and physically.  I lose my temper and have very little patience a lot of the time.  I sometimes wonder how this year away from Brandon will affect the boys.  

On Saturday morning we dyed some eggs.  I put the eggs on to boil and forgot about them.  By the time I remembered them, the water had evaporated leaving two of the eggs broken and the others just slightly browned.  They still dyed just fine.  After dying eggs, we went and picked up our Bountiful Basket.  It was a great one.  Heavy on the veggies, the way I like it. 
They were so excited to dye eggs! After the eggs dried the boys used markers to further decorate them.

Patiently waiting.

All of this for $15.00 plus a $5.50 handling fee. 

Our little buddy, Ethan came to spend a few hours with us, Saturday evening.  The boys had a good time entertaining company.  Having another kid over ensures that all the toys in the play room get rediscovered.  Ethan also had dinner with us, which was a fun treat as well.

Goofy boys.  

On Easter morning they boys were up by 6:00am. They scoured the whole house in search off Easter Eggs.  They kept asking me where I hid them. I gave them one clue, "Go find your flashlights.".  I'm sure they woke the neighbors up as they searched the yard and fought over who found each egg first!

We have been attending West Minot Church of God since November.  We enjoy the small size of the congregation. The boys like their church. They learn a lot and enjoy doing the crafts that are provided.  I like Pastor Jeff's style of preaching and the messages that he shares.  On Easter the boys did an Easter egg hunt and a small craft with the poem;

Bunnies, eggs and jellybeans, 
Thant's not all that Easter means.
There is another message too...
Jesus died for me and you.

The message that I listened too was titled The Case for Easter.  It's main scripture focus was 1 Corinthians 15:17-20.  We the audience were the "jury" while Pastor Jeff presented the Case.
The basic outline of the sermon was as follows; 

Exhibit A:  "They execution of Christ."
Simple logic tells us that people, once dead, do not come back to life!
Exhibit B:  The Empty Tomb
In spite of all these precautions-The Tomb was empty that first Easter morning.
Exhibit C:  Eyewitnesses
"After his suffering, He showed Himself to these men and gave many convincing proofs that He was alive.  He appeared to them over a period of 40 days and spoke about Experiencing the Resurrection for themselves!" (Acts 1:3, NIV)
Exhibit D:  Changed Lives
The Resurrection is validated by the changed lives of His followers.
"Their lives were changed, the message could not be contained."

All weekend I was brought to tears at the thought of the man that was Jesus, and the physical pain that He endured in his last days on Earth.  The sacrifice that was made, all for me and my sins.  The great love and compassion that God has for me is more than I can fathom, it's overwhelming at times.
Easter gifts.

The most handsome boys.

My loves.

Easter Breakfast
After church, the boys and I stopped at the super market.  I grabbed a rotisserie chicken and a few other odds and ends.  I fueled up the Tahoe and we went home to pack up for a little road trip to Lostwood National Wildlife Refuge.  It was a little over an hour drive to the refuge.  When we got there we were met with a locked gate.  The boys thought it was awesome that we were climbing over the gate, the start to a great adventure.  We hiked around, watched ducks fly over, geese swim in the ponds and investigated different kids of animal poop on the road.  Of course the poop was super fascinating and we had to study it to figure out what kind of animal had been eaten to make poop look like that!
Locked gates don't scare us!

Such a goof.

Momma and sons

A handful of rocks.

Selfie Sunday. 

What kind of animal made this poop? Is there rabbit in this poop?!? 
Writing his name in the road.

Nature, it's where God speaks to me.
 We drove back to Minot and had a picnic dinner at Oak Park.  The boys ate more chips and cookies than I would have liked, but I let it happen and kept my mouth shut, allowing them to just enjoy the meal.  Dillan shared some of his meal with a curious squirrel.  Tanner kept saying, "It's creeping me out!" when the creature would venture a little too close for his comfort.  Tanner isn't the animal lover that Dillan is.
He kept piling more Oreo's onto his plate.

All day long this little boy asked to go on a picnic. 

"Scardy" Squirrel eating Dorritos

At bedtime I asked each boy what his favorite part of the day had been.  
Tanner; "Mostly just walking outside and eating Oreos at our picnic."
Dillan;  "Finding the Easter eggs and feeding that cute squirrel.  Being with you!"
Me;  "My favorite part of today was spending it with you boys.  Worshiping our Lord and giving thanks for His sacrifice.  Spending time in nature. Being lucky enough to tuck you into bed, each and every night."


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