Our neighbors who live behind us bequeathed to us this lovely little rocker that is perfect for our deck. Since it was just their size, the little boys had to try it out right away, and they looked so cute that I grabbed my camera and quickly snapped a couple of pics. Rarely do I take two out of two great shots, especially when wiggly little boys are the subjects, but here they are.


Big News

Yesterday I received my very own copy of what I am affectionately referring to as My Educational Bible in the mail. I’ve already read and re-read the library’s copy, but it is nice to have my own finally. And it will certainly be an indispensable part of our home schooling adventure this coming year. Yes, you read that right: The Hornes are going to home school next year!


After feeling conflicted about next year’s schooling plan for quite some time, it is a glorious thing to have finally made a decision. We are in no way pulling out of Covenant for lack of love – we are still crazy about our school. It is an amazing place, and we hope to be back there in the near future, but a set of complex circumstances as well as a huge change of heart as regards home schooling have led us here, and we are very excited about next year.

If I didn’t admit to being somewhat nervous about how it all happens I would be lying. But in the past several months I have discovered such a vast array of amazing resources in the Dallas area available to families who home school. The truth of the matter is that we will have to carefully pick and choose enrichment and other extras so that we actually have some down time here at home to get the basics done!!

I will certainly write more on this topic in the weeks and months to come. Those of you who have known me for some time and hear that we’ve decided to home school for a year may well think I’ve lost my marbles. So be it. I am looking at it as a way to savor some of the precious time with my children while they are still relatively young, and as an opportunity to try out some things we haven’t had time or resources to put toward in the past. We are looking forward to the journey!

Name that Doggie Contest!

As of today, we are the proud adoptive family of one sweet little yellow lab. Her name has been Dixie, which we like ok, but we are trying to determine if we can come up with a name we like better, that fits her perfectly, and that everyone in this family can agree on. Probably not on that last count, but it’s worth a try.

So…..all of our wonderful readers: will you please help?? Submit your best pick for a name for our new dog, and the lucky winner will receive……..well….the SATISFACTION of knowing you helped the Hornes find the perfect name for Dixie, also known now as, “What’s-her-name”?? In addition, “What’s-her-name” will send you a letter expressing her personal thanks, signed by her very own self.

Dixie is, and probably at full-size will remain a rather petite-ish lab, topping out at probably 55-60 pounds. She’s a very pale yellow lab, “blonde” in color with brown eyes and a nose. She is loving and sweet, and can catch a frisbee like no dog we’ve ever been around before. For seven months old she is pretty well-behaved. She loves car rides, practicing her obedience training moves, catching frisbees from Jay, and pretending she is a lap dog.

If it is any help, here are some names that were put forth by various people around here as good possibilities. My personal favorite is Lucy, chosen because it was the name of the littlest girl in one of our favorite stories: CS Lewis’ The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, but Jay feels uncomfortable with that name because his paternal grandmother was named Lucille. Ah well….

Other possibilities which we cannot get unanimous agreement on include:

Maisie, Trixie, Tansy, Rosie, Sweet Pea, Pixie, Myrtle, Chloe, Charlotte, and Shiloh.

So come one, everyone, send in names!!! Little Miss “What’s-Her-Name” patiently awaits your wonderful suggestions!


Something to say

I am very excited to say… not much, at this point. But in about 4 weeks, I’ll have lots to say, and I’ll be excited about it, and I’ll also say why I don’t have much to say right now. But suffice to say, as of today I am no longer looking for new employment. And that is very good news at the House of Horne. Thanks be to God!

Yet Another Addition

Is there anything cuter than a fat, roly-poly puppy with big paws, a sweet face, floppy ears and soft, soft fur?


I saw this little face (the dog’s, not Josiah’s!) on a shelter website early in the week. Lone Star Labs told us they would love to pull her from the shelter but only if a foster home was available. Most people aren’t too enthusiastic about fostering a puppy; sure they are cute, but they are also a mess! But we said yes, why not? Hmmmmm.

Yesterday, Marsha of LSL arrived with a second crate, bag of puppy food, puppy biscuits, and some chew toys for the newest foster to play with. Today the two little boys and I picked up Lulu from the vet’s office and took her through afternoon carpool to the delight of all the schoolchildren!


Well, she IS a really cute puppy. And the children are having a ball with her. Dixie is not so sure about the little encroacher, and we have had to closely monitor the two girls when they are together. But we have no doubt Lulu will find herself a loving home VERY quickly. Till then, we are soaking us up some puppy love! Updated to add: Check out who made the Lone Star Adoptable Pets Page!!


Oh, and by the way, the only thing cuter than a little roly puppy, is the man of your dreams holding that puppy!


Watchful Puppy

Today Josiah awoke with a bad stomach virus, and spent the day on an air mattress in the living room, alternately getting sick, crying because he felt so miserable, and falling asleep with the exhaustion of it all. We have had several sick wards in the living room already this year, but this was one was a little different, because today, in the middle of it all, was Dixie the pup, who lay near Josiah’s side through much of the day. And who even several times attempted to lie almost on top of Josiah on his air mattress, perhaps in an effort to help him know she really, really wanted to be as close to him as possible, and comfort him in his distress. Sweet doggie.


My Boring Bible Story

Near the end of 1997, at the tender age of 26, I wrote my first Deacon’s corner article in my church’s monthly newsletter. I was just sifting through old files on my laptop, and came across it. I ask you, what is more fun than plagiarizing yourself?

My Boring Bible Story

circa November 1997

This morning, chapter seven of Numbers happened to be part of my devotional reading plan. It is a favorite of mine, because I learned a great lesson from it a couple years ago when I listened to it in my car for the first time. Unlike a book, one cannot skim a passage when listening to the Bible-on-cassette. There I was, trying to keep a disciplined focus on the words coming through my speakers as I cruised down the highway, when God ‘enlightened’ me. You see, Numbers 7 is perhaps the most boring chapter in the entire Bible.

Continue reading “My Boring Bible Story”

Well Now, Look Who’s Back!!

I know, Gentle Readers: this has become a dog blog. Bear with us please, if you will. Bwahahahah!

Remember that cute puppy we fostered over the weekend? The one whom another family with four children had already committed to adopting? Well, in a very surprising turn of events, they decided not to keep her after all. Tuesday while I was at the dentist, I got a call from one of the Lone Star workers who knew we’d really enjoyed Dixie while she was here. They asked if we might like to have Dixie back, since we knew her better than any other volunteers in the program right now, assuming Gordon found other foster arrangements. (Nothing against sweet Gordon – we think he is a gem, and as soon as he fattens up he will be busy with his calendar-modeling career!). We said yes, we’d love to foster Dixie again, so on Tuesday night another nice volunteer picked up big Gordon, and yesterday we brought Miss Dixie back to our house.

She initially displayed that boundless puppy energy just like the previous time she was dropped off to stay at House of Horne. It tapered off significantly within a day’s time, which it has again today. For a seven month-old lab, Dixie is surprisingly docile and calm; she can play really hard, and then come inside and flop down for a nap. She is super-gentle with our children and will eat a tiny piece of “kibble” from Josiah’s little clenched fingers without so much as nicking him. This afternoon, he sat on her and pretended he was a cowboy and she was a horse. And she never even moved to get up, just politely pretended along with him that she was the best 43 pound horse ever. What a sweet girl.

Sadly, Dixie has a bad little cough she needs to get over. So we will be keeping her at least until she can get healthy again, and then we will see….for now, we are so happy to have her back.


The older shall get served by the younger

Jonathan, almost crying: “Dad, I don’t want to play chess anymore. Nicolas won’t play easier.”

That’s Jonathan, the 7 year old intellectual prodigy, referring to Nicolas, the 5 year old boy who until recently tried hard to give the impression he had cotton fluff between his ears.

Editor’s note: see comments for title credits.