Thursday, October 28, 2010

Costume night

Last night was costume night at Awana. There were lots of wild animals roaming around and a ballerina.The girls were decked out with plenty of frills and fluff.There was also a Dorothy, Tin Man, Scarecrow and Lion sighting. I think they lost the yellow brick road though. Are we in Kansas or what?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Great grandma

My dad's mother, the boys and girl's great grandma, passed away last Sunday. She was 90 years-old. So it wasn't a shock, but it was a surprise as she appeared to be in relatively good health.She had 5 children, 16 grand children and I don't know how many great grand children. Some of my family is in Korea, and I haven't seen them in almost 30 years. This picture was taken about 5 years ago with about half of the family.She was the last of my grandparents, the end of a generation in our family. It's a somber time in the Lee household. Psalm 90 comes to mind:

Psalm 90:1 Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations. 2 Before the mountains were born Or You gave birth to the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God. 3 You turn man back into dust And say, "Return, O children of men." 4 For a thousand years in Your sight Are like yesterday when it passes by, Or as a watch in the night... 10 As for the days of our life, they contain seventy years, Or if due to strength, eighty years, Yet their pride is but labor and sorrow; For soon it is gone and we fly away. 11 Who understands the power of Your anger And Your fury, according to the fear that is due You? 12 So teach us to number our days, That we may present to You a heart of wisdom.

Monday, October 25, 2010


Sandy took 10 years of piano lessons. I took almost 1 year. But I also took almost 10 years of violin lessons. And we both love to sing. Music is definitely a big part of our lives. So we want all of our kids to learn the play the piano and read music at the very least. The only problem? We don't have a piano...until now!Actually, we did get a piano earlier this year. However, it was not quite our style...Some friends from church were moving and giving it away. I didn't realize what I was getting into when I thought I could re-finish it.Thankfully, I won't have to worry about that project because some other friends had a piano that was ready to play! So now we're ready to go. The boys and girl have been "playing" it non-stop. Let's see if they still like it once piano lessons really begin!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Psalm 1

With Awana going on in full swing, we have verses flying all over the house! Andrew and Matt both have quite a few they are working on for Awana. Emery has few herself. I am also trying to maintain their previous family verses and add new ones suited for their individual character development. Plus, I have my own verses to keep track of. Can there be too many Bible verses?

As Andrew is starting to gain some independence, I thought he could use this verse. I am very proud of the great job he has done in memorizing verses this year. As I looked over the verses that he has memorized (see the right side bar), I am so thankful that he has developed this discipline. He comes home every day from school and reads his Bible and practices his memory verses. As a parent, it is so gratifying to know he is doing that!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Yay, I was wrong!

Normally I don't love it when I'm wrong but this time I'm glad to say that I was! Just a few days ago I said that I had a failed pumpkin crop but I'm happy to say that suddenly we've got pumpkins! I was out weeding with the kids yesterday and Matt and Ems shouted to me that there was squash. I was a bit skeptical but sure enough there it was! I was going to just pull it out and trash it a while back but Peter and my dad said to leave it alone and just see what happens. I guess patience does pay off. At this point I saw at least 4 pumpkins starting to grow. They won't be ready in time for fall decorating but we should have plenty of pumpkin pie this Thanksgiving!

On a totally different note, this must be some sort of record for me, three blog entries in one month!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Soccer season

I'm a little late posting about Matt's fall soccer season. It finished up a couple of weeks ago.

Matt had a great first season and scored a ton of goals. This video starts off pretty slow but after a little wait and a stumble, Matt manages to sneak in for a goal. Too bad he left his coach hanging!

I know they don't sound excited, but trust me, they were both SUPER excited about the season! I am very proud of Matt's great season.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

He did it!

Congratulations to my honey for finishing the half marathon within his goal time of 2 hours! Actually, he finished in 1 hour and 57 minutes, to be precise. I think he could've done it even faster except that there were soooo many people for the first few miles that he couldn't run at pace until after the trail split off for the full marathon runners. Not to mention that fact that he only got 5 hours of very interrupted sleep the night before and the last few weeks of training were disrupted by illness, rain, and the Desiring God conference. He was a little nervous this morning wondering how all those things would affect his ability to run.
A few stats:
-overall pace: 8:59 minute mile. They give you a tracking device for your shoe and track your pace at various mile markers. Very cool.
-finished in the top 25% of all half marathon runners
-finished in the top 50% for men in his age categoryThis is what the kids and I were doing while Peter was running his heart out in the early morning hours. Sleeping and eating away!
It was a bit hard to find him in this crowd of thousands. Thankfully we had pre planned a meeting place in the event that we weren't able to find each other at the finish line.
The kids are proud of their daddy and so am I! Not only do I appreciate the fact that I am married to a man that is disciplined enough to fit this into his already very busy schedule but that he did it while maintaining his priorities as a husband, father, and pastor. He would often go to train in the evenings after he had put the kids down to bed at night so as to not sacrifice his time with the kids. I know he was already very tired by that time, yet he pushed on. It takes a special kind of man to do that. And you must know that he does not have any sort of love for running. In fact, Andrew asked him today if he could run with Peter at the track and Peter said, "I'm not running again for some time!" haha! I love you honey!

Friday, October 15, 2010

You can't win them all...

I've always wanted to decorate my front entrance area with lots and lots of pumpkins during the fall but I could never get myself to spend that much on a temporary decoration. I also thought it might be a nice neighborly gesture to pass them out to neighbors to build relationships. So, I thought I'd grow a bunch of pumpkins this year to decorate with.
Started out fine, even in the intense heat of our hot and dry summer.

I got lots and lots of beautiful flowers but no squash. I'm guessing it's because I didn't have both male and female flowers. I initially had 2 more vines but they were destroyed by squash bugs. I'm guessing if they had survived, I might've fulfilled my dream of having pumpkins galore. Oh well, there's always next year!

We're off to the half marathon festivities later today. We'll post pictures of how it went soon!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Happy Birthday!

She hasn't changed a bit since the day I met her...We got all dolled up for a night on the town on Sandy's birthday...ha! It was crazy hair night at Awana.We had fun with it.As usual, I had the kids make a birthday card for mom. Every year, the artistry and creativity improves. This is Andrew's page. Mom is cooking on the left, and she has a few gadgets and a dozen little helpers doing all sorts of things such as throwing butter and filling up her syrup pitcher. The other helpers are welding, guarding, painting, and placing gold onto the star with a rocket powered crane. This is a small window into the mind of Andrew. I think that's why he can't remember to do anything! There's too much going on!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Quarterly Update #3

Can you believe the year is 3/4 finished? Every year, it goes faster and faster. Thankfully as a Christian, it's exciting to be getting closer and closer to heaven.

It's time for my last quarterly update for the year. Click here for my previous update.

Goal #1 - Read 16 books
  • Well, I made it to 20 so far. I think I'm getting extra credit. It's amazing to think how much God has changed me so that I like reading. I've noticed in the summer months I slow down with all of the summer projects. But with the cold weather approaching, I think I'll be reading more soon.
Goal #2 - Run the KC Half-Marathon in under 2 hours
  • I ran 12.5 miles 2 weeks ago. I ran a 7:14 mile on Saturday. I'm not exactly in as great shape as I was about 4 weeks ago, but I think I can do it. The race is this SATURDAY! Can you tell I'm excited?
Goal #3 - Read through the Bible
  • I'm about 20 days ahead of schedule. I'm in the middle of Jeremiah and just finished 2 Timothy. Jeremiah is a really emotionally difficult book to read. The judgment and pain of God for His harlot and rebellious child Israel is tough to swallow. God's holy love for us is so deep.
Goal #4 - Memorize 12 new Bible passages
  • After cruising through several proverbs, I'm hitting a big chunk in Colossians. I like the variety of memorizing different types of biblical literature. It keeps things very fresh. I'm already looking ahead to next year though I'm wondering - should I try and memorize a book of the Bible or possibly some verses related to the character of God? I haven't memorized a book of the Bible in a long time yet I want to always grow in my understanding of the greatness of God. Too many options, not enough brain power...
I love my goals this year. They have really helped me to stay disciplined and focused all year. It's exciting to think that the Lee Family Retreat is coming up soon too.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Big girl bed

Somehow Emery has grown up. How did that happen?We retired her toddler bed and gave her a regular twin. She was very excited about it. Can you tell?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

We're done!

This weekend, I finished painting the last touch up spots on the house and shed! We're done! The brushes are cleaned and put away, hopefully, forever.Here's the shed. And below is the metamorphosis of our house in 2 1/2 years:This is April 2008 when we saw it for the first time.Oct 2008 - new roof, no shrubs and removed a tree.July 2009 - 2 construction vehicles, 2 tons of gravel and lots of digging.The end result? A waterproof basement but we lost any curb appeal we may have had.Oct 2010 - It's amazing what some paint, a new screen door, some shutters, a new lawn, a little castleblock border and some new shrubs can do for a place! It feels like we live in a whole new house. I just realized that it pretty much is a whole new house.Here's the side view. Praise God we're finished! For now...

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Myungs

My parents just left yesterday after 8 days in KS. I only got to have a few days with them because we were at the conference but those few days we had were great!
My dad did various projects for us in the yard including transplanting plants, staking, and finished painting the shed! Thanks dad!The kids LOVED having them around and miss them already.
We spent one day seeing some of the sights in the Kansas City area including Overland Park Botanical Gardens, the Nelson Atkins Museum, and we grabbed dinner at Country Club Plaza. Thank you for visiting us! We look forward to having you here again at Christmas time!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Minneapolis is fun!

I thought the conference would be great and it totally exceeded even those high expectations. But I was very pleasantly surprised at how much there is to Minneapolis, which I wasn't expecting. I love big cities and so it was fun to be smack dab in the middle of a lively downtown for several days.

My personal feeling is that if I'm going to eat out, it might as well be good! I see no point in spending money on food that can be made just as well, if not better at home easily. So, knowing that we'd have no choice but to eat out during the conference I did a little homework on where we might want to indulge our appetites. I was very happy with most all of our eatery selections which included lots of stuff we can't get in Emporia including, Japanese, Vietnamese, Cuban and very "gourmet" type foods. This was a tasty Cuban hash with perfectly cooked plantains, one of Peter's favorite things.One of the very fun surprises was running into old friends Brett and Vaness Craycraft, from our church in CA, and catching up with their lives and vice versa. Since we've moved, they also moved to Chicago, so there was much to catch up on.

We also got to enjoy the conference and build our friendship with the Autreys from Flint Hills. I LIKE them!
Seeing some authors that we have read and really been blessed by was pretty neat. Randy Alcorn signing our "Treasure Principle" book.

There was much more that I would've liked to explore and see in MN, but we didn't have time. I think I'd actually be willing to go there again just to see the sights. We didn't even hit the Mall of America! I think we'll be revisiting there someday... Thank you Lord for a wonderful time!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Desiring God National Conference

Sandy and I just returned from Minnesota where we attended the Desiring God 2010 National Conference. We left the kids with grandma and grandpa and had a phenomenal time in the big city listening to speakers like John Piper, Al Mohler, Frances Chan, R.C. Sproul, Randy Alcorn and quite a few others.

In fact, Sandy almost got famous. Click here to see pictures from the conference. If you go to the 3rd to the last picture, you can see Randy Alcorn to the left and some nice family talking with him at the table. But if you look very closely at the right side of the picture, you can see half of, not me - Sandy!We had a great time, and I'll blog more about the fun stuff later. But I had a bit of an A-ha! spiritual moment. God was so good and kind to bless me with some spiritual illumination. On the first day of the conference, I listened to Tullian Tchividjian, pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church. He was speaking about Gospel math - Jesus + nothing = everything.

He talked about how Gospel math addresses the issue of identity. Our identity is in Christ so we don't need any person's approval or affection because God already approves and loves us through Christ. Because of the Gospel, I have nothing to prove or to protect. I can lose my reputation, my prestige, and/or my standing in human eyes because I already am established before God. My identity is secure in Christ, and I don't have to worry about losing anything because I already have everything I could ever need or want.

I've definitely known that my identity is in Christ for many years. But I didn't realize that I hadn't truly understood the implications of that. I have been searching for many, many years for the affection and approval of others. I have been searching to belong to a group, to be accepted by others. Tullian said that living your life trying to gain favor or acceptance = slavery.

God opened my eyes this weekend to realize that I have been trying to do that. I have been trying more hardest and best to please people. To gain others' acceptance and approval for my ministry. And doing this, has been killing my soul. I have been trying to be something I can't. I've been trying to be someone I'm not.

That was another theme in this conference. Many of the pastors who spoke exhorted us to be ourselves as pastors. Don't try and be John Piper. Don't try and be someone you're not. Use the gifts and personality that God has given you to do the best you can in Christ, but be yourself.

What freedom this brings! God has already approved and accepted me as I am so that I can serve Him in love. I can be the pastor He has gifted me to be. And by His grace, I can turn from the idol of seeking others' praise and acceptance. Because of the Gospel, I can receive criticism and disapproval of others because I am secure in Christ.

Jesus + nothing = EVERYTHING...amen!