Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

Bunny Multiplication February 29, 2012

Filed under: Cooking Experiments — Amy Scott @ 10:59 am

I moved to Lewis County at age 12 and I quickly learned something about our rural home – we had bunnies, lots of bunnies. I’m not talking the kind that you keep in a cage and take out to pet. I’m talking about wild rabbits. Now I’m sure rabbit is a more appropriate term for these animals, but in my mind they are bunnies and always will be. Bunnies just sounds cuter and less likely to give you rabies. Okay, now for those of you who follow my blog, I’m sure you know that I am not a nature girl. I don’t enjoy raising animals (unless you consider my one fluffy, 12 pound dog something to raised like livestock), I don’t hunt or kill animals for sport or fun, I don’t have animal posters or calendars around my house. My philosophy with animals is leave them alone and hope they leave me alone. So why a blog about bunnies???

Because marshmallows come in bunny shapes! You should know by now that marshmallows are something I keep around my house (more than animals). A couple of weeks ago, I was at Walmart looking through the spring/Easter section. I was looking at the baking cups and admiring all the cute designs and patterns. I settled on getting mini-cupcake baking cups that look like flowers. I really liked the full size cups that looked like flowers, but the cost for just 12 baking cups was absurd. I like to spice up my baking with cute elements, but I will not spend an arm and a leg on it. Especially since my treats are going to be ingested by 10 year olds, not the judges of cupcake wars. Maybe then I would spring for the high class baking supplies. Once my baking cups were selected I went happily along the way to do the rest of my shopping. Jeremy and I have a flow at Walmart that starts in the toiletries section and works around through home then cleaning to our final destination – the food section! As I was picking out my cereal, I noticed an end cap with Easter marshmallows all over it! Many different kinds in spring pastel colors! It was beautiful! In that moment, it all came to me! I would use my mini-flower baking cups to make cupcakes that I would use green frosting on like grass and then put the bunny shaped marshmallows on top! Once I saw the vision for this baking project I had to go for it! I do realize that grass doesn’t grow inside flowers, so the chance of a bunny sitting on grass inside of a flower is very slim in nature, but I figure in the cupcake world it wouldn’t be a problem!

Last night, I was feeling a bit brain dead and was contemplating what snack to make for my class. I knew that I had chocolate chips and part of me just thought a basic chocolate chip cookie would be easy and not take a lot of effort. However, my desire to always do something bigger and better took over. I decided to make a new recipe… Apparently you really need to bake the cookies on parchment paper – something I don’t keep in the house, but probably will from this point on. I have such great faith in my favorite baking sheets that I hoped the cookies would turn out okay without the parchment paper. They sure tasted good, but they were a challenge to get off the sheets and some cracked and now look a little strange. Making major mistakes is a perfectionist’s nightmare! Some you might have served the cookies I made to my class because they taste good and overall look like cookies, but I won’t. I have too high of standards (aka pride… I don’t want to be made fun of by my class who happen to be 15+ years younger than me. Yup, pride does weird things to a person). It was already late in the evening, but I knew I had another baking project idea up my sleeve – the flower bunnies! I baked the cupcakes last night before bed and then decorated them this morning. Now I should remember that chocolate cake makes the pattern on baking cups show up less and unless I wanted to double cup my cakes, I was in a pickle. So yes, next time, yellow cake will be used when I have a patterned baking cup. However, despite the chocolate color, I think they turned out pretty cute. I used my Pampered Chef frosting bottles to create the grass like effect and started from the outside and worked my way around to the inside of the cupcake. After the green grass was laid, a bunny was promptly placed on top. I’m hoping the bunny that is placed in the fresh frosting will allow the frosting to dry around it and cement the bunny in place.

The funny thing about all of this is the baking project I’m sharing is very appropriate for spring. Today it is snowing! I can look outside my window and see snowflakes falling down! So crazy! I realize that spring is still a couple weeks away and that the bunnies that surround my home probably won’t be out of a couple more weeks… so I guess this project is a prelude to spring, a glimpse at what is come! The season where the bunnies awaken and multiply, because we all know that is what bunnies do best!

PS – Happy Leap Year!

 

Crazy Coincidence February 27, 2012

Filed under: Recollections,Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 9:47 pm

In the last blog, I mentioned my post-it notes that were discovered at my old high school and my love for my Spanish class and the good times that I had. I was talking with my husband today and telling him that I could think of so many more stories that were blog worthy about Mr. Chappell or Profe as we called him, but there is only so much space. I contacted my teacher earlier today to let him know about the notes and how funny it was that they were still there after all these years. He added me as a Facebook friend and I discovered that today is birthday. So weird that this would all happen on his birthday. So Profe, if you’re reading this, consider my last blog a birthday present! I hope it brings some honor to the legacy you have left as a teacher!

 

 

Leaving a Legacy

Filed under: Recollections — Amy Scott @ 5:25 pm

In high school, I wasn’t apart of the cool kid’s crowd. I did my best to survive and not stand out too much. I loved Jesus and wanted to reach my school for him, but it was in a quiet way through the relationships I had in my classes. I wasn’t a stand up on the soap box kind of person. Most of the time I was too scared of others to truly to be myself while roaming the halls of my high school. There was one place though where I could truly be myself. Of all the places in high school that I fit in the best – it would have been in the walls of my Spanish class with my crazy Spanish teacher, Mr. Chappell, who we called Profe. He wasn’t like the other teachers. He was a friend and a goofball. We had so much fun in his classroom. A small, mixed group of students joined him for lunch in his classroom every day. I was one of those few who had my lunch in Profe’s classroom away from the crowded commons. Profe was zany and he let me be my weird self. I was able to be just be me and it was okay. A lot of laughter happened in that classroom. We had a good time! There are so many different stories I could share. I have 4 years of classes with him to pull them from. I took Spanish 1-3 with him and then because their was no Spanish 4 at our school, I was his TA my senior year. Seriously, that was the best class ever!!!

One of my favorite Profe stories would be the time I “flamingoed” and flipped his classroom. You might be confused on what this means… let me explain!  When my sister went to Centralia Christian School, they had this fundraiser were you could flamingo someone’s house. This meant that a group would go to the house of your choice and secretly put a punch of pink flamingo lawn ornaments in the front yard. They would do this at night so that way when the family woke up they would see that their yard had been flamingoed! I took part in this fundraiser by flamingoing Profe’s yard twice. Once April had graduated CCS, I couldn’t let the flamingo fun stop. I told Profe that I had to stay after class for some reason (probably something about not having a ride until later). I told him I needed a place to hang out do and homework. He gladly opened his classroom up to me and told me to shut the lights off when I left. Once he had taken off for the day, I proceeded to tape 100s of little flamingo pictures all over his walls, bookshelves, white boards, desk! Flamingos everywhere! I couldn’t stop there though!!! I turned all the desks in his classroom around so that they faced the back of the classroom and I turned all his books upside down. It was amazing!!! The next day Profe actually taught his classes facing the back wall because he thought it was too funny and didn’t want to flip the classroom around on his own. I really got him that time!!! There was also the time that my friend Amy and I put ourselves the display case that was accessed through his classroom and called ourselves “The Amy Exhibit” like we were in a zoo cage or something… or the time we covered his car in toilet paper!

Now what started this Profe blog was a text message from one of my first students. I first taught her class when she was in 4th grade and now she’s in 11th grade. She goes the same high school I did and she is a TA for her Spanish teacher. I got a text from her with a picture of a note that she found taped under her teacher’s desk. This note was taped there by ME almost 8 years go. The note says “Amy Vitzthum was Profe’s TA in 2003-2004. Today (4/23/04) she is very bored. She will remember this boring day forever!!! Yes, she spelt remember wrong, get over it.” (I scribbled out my misspelled remember). Also under the table was a piece of artwork I had made. Profe had a stamp that had the date on it. I used it for grading homework and apparently that day, I took the date stamp and made art of attacking a post-it note with it. The artwork was entitled “Lost in Time”. Very creative, I know!!! It made me so happy to see that something I created and taped under a desk was still there 8 years later and that a student I know would have found it! Jeremy told me it was like my time capsule at WF West had been discovered! You won’t find my picture or name among the sports trophies, but you will find a post-it note under the teacher’s desk in the Spanish classroom. For those of you who thought this was some super spiritual blog about the legacy I’m trying to leave in ministry – sorry, it’s not! However, I do hope that I’m leaving a legacy of that kind! I was just super happy to see that something I made almost 8 years ago still exists. Will the note be there 18 years from now or 88 years from now? Who knows. At that point I doubt the students who happen upon it will know how I am. I’m okay with that. My name might not be immortalized in history books, but I’m really okay with it being immortalized in post-it notes!

 

Recent Readings February 22, 2012

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,Children's Ministry — Amy Scott @ 1:52 pm

I love this time of the year following Christmas and my birthday. Why? Because I usually have a good stock pile of books waiting for me to read them! I get really happy when I have about 5-6 unread books on my shelf. It challenges me and motivates me! I haven’t written about what I’ve been reading lately, so I thought would share with you 3 amazing books that I’ve been reading and how they all connect.

The first book I read was Not A Fan by Kyle Idleman. The adults at our church have done the video curriculum based off the book and our pastor did a sermon series based off the book as well. I knew it really rocked our community and I wanted to see what it was all about. Let me tell you – this book is a must read for everyone!!! Kyle is serious in his challenge to evaluate our faith and see if are truly following Christ (abandoning our lives to Him and His call) or we just fans (people are enthusiastic admirers of Jesus and aren’t really in the game).  As someone who works in the Christian ministry for a living it’s easy to read a book like this and think that Kyle might be challenging you to do more to prove your faith – that is not the case. Doing more doesn’t mean anything. It’s a heart issue and when your heart is truly devoted to God than your actions will follow. It’s basic, it’s foundational and it a message that can easily be drowned out by our culture. This book is powerful. Kyle also has a great sense of humor. There are footnotes in the book that made me burst out laughing. His personality comes out through his jokes and it is a good balance to the serious nature of the topic. Another great thing about this book is it’s an easy read. Not too many big words and lot of story examples. Some Christian growth books can be hard to plow through, but this one will easily keep you engaged. Like I said before, everyone should read this book! It will make you think – in a good way!!!

The next book I read was one that was given to me by a fellow staff member to check out. It’s called 5  Conversations You Must have with Your Daughter by Vicki Courtney. I know, I know… I don’t have a daughter! But I sure do work with a lot of other people’s daughters. In fact, ministering to young girls would be number one my list of lifetime callings. This book is full of statistics and information that parents need to know and need to discussing with their daughters. The topics of the book surround themes like you are more than how you look, sex is great and worth waiting for, don’t be in a hurry to grow up and anyone be a “girls gone wild” kind of girl but dare to be virtuous.  A lot of time Christian parents think that their good Christian kids don’t need to hear these things, but the truth of the matter is culture is speaking lies to girls daily and parents need to be an active force for good in their children’s lives.  These conversations aren’t one time occurrences. Conversations about such things should happen often and start when girls are young (in age appropriate ways). The statistics in the book will give you an honest look into what society is telling our young ladies and how the lies are effecting them. The thing I took away from this book is I have a voice in the lives of so many young women. I may not be their mother, but I can continue to affirm the message of virtue and self-worth in God.  Parents need to read this book and they need to be actively engaged in their child’s life. That means boundaries, rules, guidelines – whatever you want to call them – you need to have standard of living in your home and it starts with you!

Now the book I am currently reading is called Father Fiction by Donald Miller (previously published as To Own a Dragon). This is certainly a swing in the opposite direction from the last book. Donal Miller explores what it means to grow up without a father. He openly admits what that has done to him as  man. It’s a challenging to read this because you can deep impact and pain that comes to the fatherless. Honestly, there is a generation growing up fatherless. There are a great many of people who missing that piece of the puzzle. It does mess with them… I’m not finished yet with the book, but I can see so many strange parallels between the conversations that parents are supposed to have with their children and what Donald is saying about the lack of conversations and influences. The extremes are incredible and people are greatly affected. Donald’s writing style is one that personally enjoy. Seeing the world through his fatherless eyes is opening my eyes to the children who are in the same boat as him. Working with kids, I get to see firsthand how profound the influence of a parent is on a child’s life. Yes, parents can be engaged and truly leading their children on the path of life. But sadly, parents can be absent – physically or disengaged, and it has a very negative influence. Parents are the biggest influence in their children’s life – for good or for bad.

I think it’s interesting how all 3 of these books connect and relate to each other. Not A Fan really strengthened my call and resolve to serve the Lord with my whole life. 5 Conversations You Must have with Your Daughter reminded me I have role in the lives of children. I have been called to speak life to them and direct them the best I can towards God’s will for their lives. I am parenting many kids in many moments throughout the week. I am using those moments well??? I was challenged to be a force for good in this generation. Now reading Father Fiction, I can see what happens if parents don’t step up and don’t engage in the call to parenting. Overall, I am reminded that this fatherless generation is never alone. Even if their earthly father or mother has walked out on them, God never will. He is a father to the fatherless. The Bible makes it pretty clear that children hold an important place in God’s heart. Jesus loved the children and I have a feeling those kids were better off as a result of the love that was shown to them. My prayer is that parent’s would be empowered to be the spiritual leaders of their children. My prayer is that by partnering with families, I can be a part of this divine calling to serve the church. Too much is stake to be a fan in the bleachers, I’m all in and I’m ready to give my life for something matters for eternity!

 

Do it for the kids February 17, 2012

Filed under: Children's Ministry — Amy Scott @ 2:41 pm

There are lot of times in children’s ministry where I will step out of my comfort zone – usually it’s in wearing something ridiculous and knowing that other adults will see me in my crazy get-up. Sometimes I don’t want to participate. I want to plan these fun dress up days and these fun events and then… well, look normal and not push myself beyond my comfort zone. Tonight is our 1st-5th grade class sleepover and it’s a Hawaiian theme. I’ve been telling kids and leaders alike to dress up and really get into the theme. I’m really good at talking the talk, but will I walk the walk? Now this might be a surprise to you, but I don’t own a single Hawaiian item in my wardrobe! I totally had the excuse to not dress up for the sleepover, but I knew I’ve been telling others to do so and what kind of leader would I be if I didn’t? Yesterday while shopping for the sleepover food and supplies, I stopped by a party supply store and for a whopping $10 got a pink lei, pink bracelet, and a pink grass skirt. I combined that with a flower I wore in my hair for a friends wedding and my Hawaiian ensemble was complete. Now I might look like a dork – my husband already told me he wouldn’t take me to Hawaii looking like this… I guess it’s not authentic. For the kids though, I will wear it! For the kids, I will put on my most excited face and be jumping with joy tonight! I might be tired and sore from a long week, but I will push that aside so that the kids have the best time possible. Sometimes I just having to remind myself… I’m doing it for the kids!

 

Some weeks… February 15, 2012

Filed under: Children's Ministry,Family Time,Women in Ministry — Amy Scott @ 4:49 pm

Okay, some weeks are pretty free and life is fairly easy going… then I have weeks like this week where I am filled to be brim with good stuff. I’m talking about things I like to do, things I enjoy, things that matter to me. However, add them all together and it starts to feel like a bit much. So here is a glimpse into the first half of my week and my projection for the second half of my week. (Note some of you will read this and think that I’m a wimp and have accomplished really nothing of worth… that is fine if you are super human and super cooler than me. I am not super human and I like naps).

Sunday started off like any other Sunday. I get up and get ready while my dog sleeps snuggled into my bed. I’ll be blow drying my hair and look over at him so peaceful like and I am reminded that life is not fair. I am certainly not a morning person, but a lot things happen in the morning hours – like church. So I must get up and take part in these activities with people who enjoy the morning. I try to smile and pretend that I wouldn’t rather be in bed. By the time children’s church rolls around I’m usually pretty alert, but starting to get hungry for lunch. I know it’s so silly, but I often think a lot about lunch while I’m helping with the kiddos. Maybe I should pack a snack??? But then they all look at me with those eyes that say “did you bring enough to share with the group?” and of course, I didn’t… so I scrap the snack idea and just wait for my first meal of the day to happen around 1:00pm. Sunday was a life group Sunday and the group was meeting at our house that night. I got home and started to eat almost immediately. After my late lunch I started to clean my house in anticipation of the company I would have over that evening. Once the house is clean enough to make my conscience happy I then decide to spend my last few free hours sleeping – oh yeah! Gotta love a Sunday afternoon nap! I wake up to discover my hubby has fallen asleep on the couch. That never happens! We are both dopey but welcome our company shortly after 6:00pm… After 2 hours of meeting and listening to Jeremy talk on the phone with his brother about blinds and my favorite TV show, it’s off to bed.

Monday morning has a way of being different than all other mornings… It’s a beginning of a new week. This week happens to hold the Missionettes sleepover where I can expect to be responsible for 80-100 girls and volunteer leaders. Needless to say, Monday morning is spent focusing on nothing but the sleepover. Monday at noon I head off to lunch with my mother-in-law. We have a monthly lunch date to spend some time together out of the office and develop our friendship. After lunch, I head to the store to by eggs, flour and an onion. The eggs and flour are for baking project later that evening. The onion is for my husband. I have a few quiet hours at home and then I have a youth student over to bake cookies with me.

Tuesday while getting ready I hear my cell phone go off saying I have a text message. I find that my mom has decided to give Jeremy and I a couch and an over-sized chair. I tell Jeremy and he gets excited because these are nice pieces of furniture. We accept and make plans to pick up the furniture next Thursday… then on Monday… and then we decide to pick it up after work! Yep, we’re decisive. Since Tuesday was Valentine’s day Jeremy was sweet and got us take-out for our staff meeting meal. After work we headed up to my parents to pick up the furniture. We realize the furniture doesn’t fit through the doors well, so have to load it by going round through the backyard where there are double doors that make things a bit easier. We load up a church van almost completely full with furniture. Jeremy and I decide we’re starving and stop to get fast food on the way home. We know that with furniture in the van we’ll want to set up ASAP when we get home. The rest of the night is spent moving what seems like all the furniture in our home around to various places and then moving them back again. Good times.

Now we come to today. I woke up and cleaned my entire house, steam vacuumed all by one room of my house (I didn’t do our guest room because pieces of a disassemble futon are scattered around it n0w – yes, you better believe that drives me crazy). I have finished a book and started a new book. I have responded to many emails and phone calls regarding the sleepover because the deadline to register is today. I will dress up in clashing mismatched clothes for a class dress up day tonight and I will come home and pass out. Tomorrow I will set up and decorate for the sleepover. Than I will go shopping for all the food and door prizes for the sleepover. Soon enough Friday will be here and I won’t stop moving until midnight when I make my class go to sleep. However, I won’t sleep because every sound I hear I will assume that some student is trying to sneak out.

Okay… this got quite long! Sorry! I just thought I would share the fast paced, high action life I live! It’s a fun life, but let me tell you – I see another nap in my future… most likely a 6 hour one when I get home on Saturday!

 

The Resolution Ceremony February 11, 2012

Filed under: Children's Ministry,Women in Ministry — Amy Scott @ 5:11 pm

On Wednesday night our church did something a little different for our midweek programs. Instead of being split up all over the building according to our age, we joined together for a powerful evening. We recently showed the movie “Courageous” as a family movie night. Out of showing the movie, we felt compelled to do a resolution ceremony of our own. For those that haven’t seen the movie, 4 fathers make a resolution about being a man of God and what that means as a husband and a father. The resolution ceremony gives men an opportunity to stand in front of their families and commit to being the spiritual leaders of their households.

There were a couple reasons this night was so cool for me. The first would be that we got worship together as a whole church and that meant my hubby was by my side. I don’t often to get hear Jeremy singing next to me so I always enjoy the times were the two of us can praise the Lord together. It was also great to be there with all age ranges. I normally attending the earliest service at our church on Sunday mornings. As you can imagine, not a lot of youth are in that service because of the time and because they have a Sunday School class at that hour. The energy that comes from worshiping together as a whole church is very exciting and one I wish I would experience more often.

The pastoral staff were invited up to the stage first to lead by example. This would give the guys a chance to see what the ceremony would look like and have the men of our team going before our congregation. I’m not usually the type of person that likes to get up and hang out on stage. I’m much more in my element in a back classroom with kids. Lucky for me, I just had to stand there… and not laugh. That was tough!!! The men turned to face their wives and children (no children in our case). Jeremy took my hand and repeated after our regional presbyter, Myron Ness, the word of the resolution. Now here is the kicker – Jeremy has been ill all week with a high fever. Jeremy was cold medicine to get through the evening. Jeremy doesn’t do well repeating after others… add all these things together and you get a very funny moment. Jeremy tired his hardest to follow along, but couldn’t keep up. I’m standing in front of the entire congregation in what is supposed to be a hallowed moment and I’m trying not to lose it and totally bust up laughing. Jeremy was in the same boat as me. We held it together, but wow, it was hard! That is a memory I won’t soon forget!

After the pastors took their vows, we called over 50 guys up on to the stage. We have a big stage at our church and it was completely full of men committing to this resolution. It was quite the sight to see. My favorite part of this ceremony was the young men who are not married and do not have kids that came forward. These men are making a conscience decision while they are young that they want to be men of honor and are going hold themselves to this high standard. I was extremely impressed with them. One of the young guys up on stage used to be in Jeremy and I’s children’s ministry a long time ago. As a kid he had a lot of anger and was working through some big issues that life had dealt him. Now as a high school student, he helps us in children’s church each Sunday. It was great to see how God doesn’t leave us where we are at. I’m not sure 5 years ago, I could have pictured him on stage repeating those words, but there he was on Wednesday. It was awesome!

Now this wasn’t planned, but I think this ceremony was the perfect thing to do before Valentine’s Day. I would much after hear my husband commit to being a man of God and striving for God’s best in his life much more than I would like to receive flowers or candy(not that receiving flowers or candy are bad things). Flowers will wilt and candy was disappear, but the memory of those words will remain, especially for those who will hang the resolution vows on their wall as a reminder. It’s important to challenge men to lead in matters of faith. It’s important for the younger generations to see men fighting for their families. It’s important for kid’s to see their dad pray for them. Even though some moments of the evening involved humor, for the most part it was a serious evening as men agreed to a serious call. I’m so proud of all the guys who took part in the resolution ceremony. My prayer is now that their words are followed by solid actions and that families are forever changed for the better because of that night.