Saturday, April 14, 2007

Talented Man

The other day when we were at church one of our friends came up to Steve and said, "You are a very talented man." She was referring to the hymns he had just played on the organ for Sacrament Meeting, since our regular pianist was out of town. Steve has never had piano lessons, but decided he wanted to learn how to play one day, and now he is playing the organ in Sacrament Meeting. This particular friend has also been to our house a couple of times when Steve has made dinner and she is always very impressed with his cooking. He is an EXCELLENT cook, but most of you already know that. ")

Anyway Julie (the friend) got me to thinking about Steve's many talents, and she is so right. He is a very talented person. I have always kind of just taken it for granted. Besides the things she mentioned he can also speak 3 languages fluently. The most difficult of which he uses everyday. He is an amazing father, and way surpasses any expectations I ever had of him. He is a kind and loving husband which is not something I always deserve. He just spent the last 2 months filling in for our Primary Chorister who was out sick from an operation, and taught the kids the new songs perfectly.

He is great with the BBQ. This is our first outdoor BBQ meal this season, and it was awesome.

And his newest hobby is wood and metal work. He has turned part of our basement in to his shop and has done some pretty cool things.

This is the forge he made to melt the metal so he could hammer it.

This is the first frame he made. Which is not meant to go in the same room as the one I blogged about the other day.

And this is a dumpster type thing that he made for our recyclable trash because the cats kept coming over and ripping open the bags.
Oh, and did I mention.... he can fix anything! He has fixed 95% of things I ask him to.

I couldn't ask for a better example to our growing BOY population.

Monday, April 09, 2007

True meaning of Easter

To not forget the true meaning of Easter, we had a wonderful day at church where we discussed the Atonement and Resurrection of Christ. Both Primary and Sacrament Meeting had a great spirit to them that I feel made both Steve and I and the boys really think about Christ.

In Primary I did a fun Sharing Time that I also did with my boys last year. Last year we were in Garmisch Germany (down south) for Easter and since their were no English Wards in the area, we didn't go to church, but I brought this lesson to help explain "Easter" to the boys. I liked it so well that I used it again.

You take 12 plastic eggs (the kind that you can open) and fill them with symbols that represent different parts of the Easter story.

1. Palm Branch -Matthew 21:1-11
Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. The people waved palm branches.

2. Bread -Matthew 26:26, 17-19
While they were eating Jesus took a piece of bread,
gave a prayer of thanks, broke it, and gave it to His disciples.
"Take and eat it," He said, "This is My body."

3. Picture of praying hands or I did a piece of paper that said "Picture on the board" and it was the Picture of Christ in Gethsemane

4. 3 Dimes -Matthew 26: 14-15 27:3
Then one of the twelve disciples, named Judas Iscariot, went to
the chief priests and asked, "What will you give me if I betray
Jesus to you?" They counted out thirty silver coins and gave
them to him.

5. Thorns, like on a rose stem -Matthew 27:29-31
Then they made a crown out of thorny branches and placed it on
His head, and put a stick on His right hand; then they knelt
before Him and made fun of Him.

6. A small cross (I glued two small sticks together) -John 19: 17-18a
He went out, carrying His cross, and came to "The Place of the
Skull," as it is called. (In Hebrew it is called "Galgotha.") There
they crucified Him. Matthew 27:31 and Luke 23:33 and Luke 23:40-41

7.Nails -John 20:25-29

8.Cotton ball with vinegar poured on it. -Matthew 27:34
They gave Jesus vinegar mixed with gall on a sponge to drink.

9. Gauze or White Cloth - Luke 23:53 and Matthew 27:57-60
After Jesus died, His friends wrapped Him up with cloth and lay Him in a special cave, a tomb.

10. Stone or a rock –Matthew 27:62-65 and Matthew 28:66
The ones who had killed him put a large rock over the mouth of the tomb, the cave to make sure no one could get Jesus out.

11. Cinnamon sticks (burial spices) –Mark 16:1
Three women brought special spices to anoint Jesus body.

12.Empty! –Luke 24:3,6 and Matthew 28:2-6
Three days later, the huge rock was moved and Jesus was gone from the tomb. An angel said He was alive again! This day is what we celebrate on Easter Sunday.

Then the Primary children came up one at a time and got to open an egg and we discussed what it represented. At the end of this I spent some time on the Resurrection and joy of that and what it means because I didn't want it to be too sad for them. It really turned out well and the kids seemed to be absorbing what they were learning.
So I know this comes a day late, but at least it is recorded now so you can use it next year or even if you don't I know where to come if I want to use it again. :)

(I was missing some by the time we came home from church)

PS- Just for Sarah-
The Allred Easter breakfast was this:
Take 3 hard boiled eggs, crack them and put them in a bowl. Squish them up with a fork. Put some salt, pepper and a dollop of butter in the bowl. Put it in the microwave for 30 seconds, then stir and eat. It is quite good for how easy it is to make.

Sunday, April 08, 2007


We had a wonderful Easter! We started by coloring some eggs yesterday for the Easter Bunny to hide.

Then, since church is not until noon, we were able to do a fun Easter egg hunt and of course candy eating marathon this morning. I realized as the boys where eating their candy that the Easter Bunny must have been on a major chocolate kick when buying the candy. Everything in their baskets was plain chocolate. There were no jelly beans, marshmallows or even chocolate with peanut butter. It was all just solid plain chocolate. It made for quit a boring Easter basket. Oops! Oh well, I will remember that for the years to come. :)
This is the boys getting "instructions" from Dad on the Easter egg hunt. He let them each get one at a time, and hummed a fun jingle while the boys were looking.

The boys got Easter mugs in their baskets, so we had hot chocolate for breakfast, and of course the usual Allred Easter breakfast of smashed up eggs with butter and salt in the microwave.
Then for dinner I made cheese fondue and we had a great time dipping our sticks in the pot and getting drops of cheese all over everything. It was a wonderful Easter!
I hope you all enjoyed your Easter Holiday. I will post a little about my sharing time on the Resurrection tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Conference Weekend

I too love Conference Weekend! It seems to be such a relaxing weekend, and I always learn so much. Not to mention there is no lesson to prepare for or fights during Sacrament Meeting. I wouldn't trade going to church for anything, but every once in a while, it is nice to have church on the computer with the kids downstairs watching Charlotte's web.

Since Conference comes on pretty late here, we can get a little stir crazy on Sunday, with no shopping, or bike riding or church to go to. So, this year we decided to go see something we haven't seen yet in Germany. Of course we chose a castle. The Frankenstein Castle is only about 20 minutes from our house, but we had not been there yet, so that is what we decided on. We took a picnic lunch and when Steve got home from Priesthood at 1:00pm we headed out. It was castle ruins like a lot of the castles here are, but it was still fun to see. It was a gorgeous day, and it was nice to be outside. The Germans must have agreed, because there where soooo many people on the bike trails and parks and at the castle and everywhere else that we past.

Looking at the holes in the floor of a watch tower. It only showed the next floor down.
The view from the top.