Wednesday, January 23, 2008


Stacy has decided to use the word brilliant more often--for three reasons: It's just kind of a fun word. Second, British people use it, specifically Bear from the show Man vs. Wild, who says it about everything from the breathtaking Chilean Patagonia mountain range to the giant, slimy grubs he's about to eat. And third, it describes our time last weekend in the mountains.

We stayed in a cabin at a Christian camp that they rent to seminary students for cheap. We drove around in the snow, watched the Seahawks game at a fun little Italian place, built snow men, drank hot chocolate, played Monopoly, and just relaxed. Then, on Sunday we drove southish a couple hours to Yosemite. It is one of the most, if not the most, beautiful places I had been to. Stacy had never been but now we both have and we got to see it in the snow. Like John Muir, the explorers who found it years before him, and the Miwok tribe who lived there for who knows how long before that, we were amazed at God's creative genius as we drove into the valley. The weekend was very restful and worship inspiring. Here are a few pictures.

Our cabin, us, and our snowmen

Half Dome

Us and Half Dome

Yosemite Falls

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Happy Birthday!

My Love

Today marks the 12045 day or 33rd year of Joshua George Mathews' life and I am inviting you to celebrate with me!
I know that I am a little bit biased because I have the best husband ever but I am sure that any of you who know Josh would agree about his character.
Josh is a man marked by the Word of God, as he has devoted his life studies to sit under the Living Word and be taught by it. Even when there are hard things to understand he is ready to study yet also be molded.
He is a man of discipline who takes seriously that our days are numbered and so the way that he chooses to spend his time in practice will make the habits that prepare him for the finish line.
He is a man of his word, if he commits to something he will follow through with his actions.
He is a man of leadership and guides our marriage to be a reflection of the Lord especially when it is hard.
He is a man of quick whit, whenever there is something fun to say he will offer an opportunity for laughter.
He is a man of loyalty who has friendships from boyhood that he cares about and invests in and takes great delight in relationship with family (not to mention his favorite band U2 and the Seahawks).
He is a man of kindness who is always seeking ways to prefer me and others before himself.
He is a man of humble strength in his quiet way he will unwaveringly stand for the truth.
He is a man of life who has taught me so much about playing hard and seizing the moment to explore and make memories.
He is a man of risk otherwise we would not be married!
Happy Birthday my love, here's to another wonderful year!!!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Celebrations and Traditions

We left on Dec 20th for Oregon and a wonderful visit to both of our families. But first Stacy had her directorial debut the night before. She was in charge of adapting and directing the Christmas program at the preschool. It took months of a lot of work, practicing lines and songs with the kids, making props and decorations, coordinating help from parents, and overall chaos control of the 2, 3, and 4 year-olds. It all paid off with great success. The kids did great, aside from the to-be-expected few cryers from stagefright. Stacy shined all night. And most of all the good news of our Savior's birth was proclaimed loud and clear to a full audience, many of whom were not believers.

After taking down the decorations we went home and wound down, slept hard for a few hours, and woke up excited to leave early the next morning. We made it over the pass without having to put on chains (the requirement was lifted 5 minutes before we reached the place they were stopping people), and spent a couple hours and had some soup in Medford with Stacy's family. We got to Josh's parents' house that evening and spent five wonderfully relaxing days there. It even snowed a little on Christmas eve and Christmas day. We continued the all important little smokies tradition. For those of you who don't know about that we cut a hole in the top of a cabbage big enough for one of those little sterno liquid fuel cans to fit in. Then we put toothpicks with little smokies all around the outside. The kids (and some big kids) crowd around and roast the little smokies and dip them in ketchup, mustard, and sesame seeds. We don't really know where it started but it has been going in the Mathews family every year as long as any of us can remember. Maybe it's an old Norwegian tradition that Grandma carried on. (Rachel, Nathan, and Boaz are doing the "Smokey Dance" in the pictures.)
Then we went back down to Medford and spent five days there. We celebrated with Stacy's sister Cynthia, who got engaged to a great guy named Kenny. It was so good just to be with family. There was some snow there too. Stacy's parents are doing well in spite of some ongoing health difficulties. They keep busy and stay involved with church and with their grandkids. The four of us, Mom, Dad, and the two of us, carried on another tradition. We played Chinese checkers, which is Mom's favorite. Because he's still the new one in the family, they all let Josh win... barely.

Then we came home on New Year's Eve day, which we highly recommend because of the lack of traffic, and now were two days into our somewhat normal routines here. Overall it was a great time of traditions, celebrations, relaxing, and being with loved ones.