Even the rocks will cry out…..a story of today’s adventure at Abalone Cove

“In response to the Pharisees asking the disciples to stop praising Him, Jesus said that even if they were to stop, the rocks would take over and continue to cry out His name. (Luke 19:39, 40) We are not rocks. We are living, breathing beings, created to praise our Maker. It’s in our nature to worship Him, and no matter where we are, we need to do so from the depths of our soul.  I hear a lot of comments about being blessed, and I think that’s wonderful, but don’t you think He needs a blessing too.  He craves the attention from His children, and we need to make sure we’re doing our part in giving it to Him. Let’s praise Him today.  Let’s grant Him the blessings He deserves.”

Wow. Indeed. Today my heart is overflowing with praises for our Lord and Maker. The beauty I beheld today on our adventure outing was SO awesome. The details of what God has created is astounding. Today I witnesses beauty in rocks, beauty in sea life, beauty in the sunlight and beauty in watching children delighting in it all as well. I simply cannot adequately describe how special Tuesdays are for me. It is the day of the week when everything gets put back in perspective. I am reminded of God and how infinitely amazing He is and how far-reaching and powerful and creative He is. I am reminded of how insignificant I am in the grand scheme of things. Literally life stands still and my mind is emptied of all of its pressing to-do’s and life’s issues. I simply exist on Tuesdays, standing in awe of Him and His creation. I go home full. Very, very full with contentment for life and being in God’s embrace. Content to let all of my life be surrendered into His care. I don’t need to have life figured out. I don’t need to have solutions for the things yet unresolved. I don’t need to fret and worry about how much work or little work I’ve accomplished. Wow….I guess you could call Tuesdays my Great Escape. Or the day when I  have my Day of Solitude, time I carve out so that my Maker and I can commune together.

There was SO much beauty in the rocks today. Simply the rocks alone speak of God’s glory. It was truly incredible. I found myself taking picture after picture of rocks.

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Even if people stop praising Him, Jesus said the rocks would take over and continue to cry out His name. Today I saw the glory that rocks themselves can give God.  It was awesome.

And then there was the sea life! We saw…..

• A gorgeous white egret with bright yellow feet greta egret

• Sea hares sea hare

• Brittle stars brittle star

• Chitons chiton

• Barnacles barnacles

• Mussels mussel

• Closed Sea Anemones. Open Sea Anemones closed anemone

open anemone

• Sea Urchins. Hundreds upon hundreds….possibly thousands of them. Oh my goodness it was a sea of purple. In some places more purple than there was even rock colors. Astounding beauty in purple masse….and some even of different colors.

sea urchins gretaunderwater urchins

• Tube worms tube worms

• Hermit crabs IMG_0795

• Clam shells, Sculptin fish darting about, Seagulls, Pelicans flying in V-formation……and more

An incredible woman who I have had the honor of meeting in the homeschool community is Greta. She was there today. She is a powerhouse. She is someone who is soooooooooo full of energy, strength and the power to look at the bright side of things. As I watched her today traversing rocky terrain with her young son, I was simply in awe. How does she do it? Here I am barely able to balance myself on the slippery, uneven rocks jutting out at all sorts of angles….and yet here she is doing the very same thing while also helping her young two-year old walk the terrain while also keeping an eye out for her three older children and responding with enthusiasm as they share their discoveries. She was bent over helping him find his balance, then picking him up and jumping rocks with him under one arm. She’s wonder woman I tell you. Not only that, but she also has the gift of putting into words the heart of what homeschooling is all about. She can express what I feel but I simply cannot find words for. I asked her if I had permission to post this writing of hers and she said yes……

“There are many different reasons I home school, and one of them is that I want to give my children a beautiful education. Not just a good education, but a beautiful one. So we read beautiful literature and memorize poetry and sing hymns. We study art and architecture and visit museums to surround ourselves in beautiful things. We learn about nature and spend as much time in it as we can , because it fills us and inspires us and it helps us know our Creator better. At the end of my time teaching them, I want my kids to walk away from our school overflowing with the beauty i have shared with them. All those beautiful things ignite passion, curiosity, creativity, wonder, and joy. I have seen it already and know it will only continue. Those are things that I can’t grade or measure, but that I hope will make them into the kind of people I will be happy to call my life’s work.”

She said it so beautifully. Today as we were climbing over rocks, I kept hearing Jacob SHOOOOOUTING at the top of his lungs “Looooooooooooooook at this everyone!!!!!” or “Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh MY GOSH!!!! Look at this!!!!!!”…..and then he and his happy friends were making names for the different areas of the ‘island’ tide pools that we were traversing. “This should be called Purple Squirt Heaven” “WHOOOOOAAAA!!! This is Mussel Central!!!!!!!” “This is a-w-e-s-o-m-e!!!!” I simply cannot recreate with my words the enthusiasm I heard springing from my kids mouths. Their eyes were bright with excitement. Their voices were loud and exuberant announcing their discoveries. There was awe. It is heavenly to be a part of beautiful education with my children. Nature does indeed help us get to know our Creator. No doubt about that. Tonight my kiddos went to bed with thankful hearts, saying a prayer of thanks to God for all that He has created and we got to enjoy today.

But I could keep writing. There was even more to delight in today. One of the unexpected delights were the squirts of sea anemones. I had never witnessed this before. As I was gazing out over the rocks before me, all of a sudden I saw a squirt of water make an arc through the air and land on other rocks. What? Huh? It caught my attention. There was no way I could take a picture of it. It happened too quickly. It was like a shooting star….happening in a split second and you either get to see it or you don’t as it sails through the sky. But as I started looking more intently…..casually taking in as much of the whole rock scene as I could…..all of a sudden…..there again would be another squirt of water.

squirtersNot a tiny squirt. Nope. A big squirt. A squirt that would reach one…two….three feet away or more. A beautiful arc of water being squirted and falling to a new location. There were no waves. There was no ocean spray. This was a result of living things….the sea anemones squirting out water. It was i-n-c-r-e-d-i-b-l-e! And it didn’t just happen a couple of times. No, this went on and on. And as we all took notice of it, the squeals of delight could be heard amongst our group, as some of us would get squirted. They were unexpected. You never knew where they were going to come from or when. So we kept going along on our merry way and then all of a sudden SQUIRT!!!! And there would be laughter and an announcement that someone had been squirted. This simple little joy was such pleasure for me. I don’t know why…..but it tickled me and I just kept smiling. I was having soooooooo much fun with all the squirting. I got squirted on my leg a couple of times…..once I was totally taken by surprise and actually gasped when I was squirted in the stomach area of my tshirt….and then later while talking to Jacob, got squirted directly into my mouth. It was crazy! That was the epitome of life at its slowest pace. Here I was with my kids enjoying the beauty of nature….with so much time on my hands delighting in nature….that I could spot and enjoy fleeting squirted streams of water.

The sun itself was glorious. As the clouds gathered, the sun danced behind the clouds…..and then rays of glorious sunshine would pierce through….other times it would cascade down from heaven in these angelic heavenly rays.

single solitary tree on rock ledge

glorious sun

Jacob had the joy of his life today! He found an amazing treasure! A pocket knife!!!!! Just last month when he celebrated his 8th birthday, his grandparents took him shopping for a Swiss Army Knife. He was in heaven that day!!!! He felt so grown-up and special to get to carry a knife around on these adventure hikes. But today he had the surprise of surprises. He found a wooden pocketknife!!!! He couldn’t believe his eyes. The rest of us couldn’t believe it either. Now not only does he have one pocket knife….but now he has two!!!! Though this one has fewer features than his birthday gift, this one does have 4 features that the other one doesn’t. Namely a saw blade. That had him smiling T-H-E biggest smile you could imagine. And when the other boys found out what he had discovered……oh they started trying to name all sorts of prices to buy it off of him. This one is unlike any we’ve ever seen. It’s made of wood. And, funny thing, it has etched into it “I love beer”. Okay that’s hilarious. This boy was happy beyond happy with today’s find. He couldn’t waaaaaaait to get home and run through the door and tell Daddy!!!!!!!!!!!

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But better than the amazing rocks…..the sea life…..the amazing sunlight….the fact that it’s December 3rd and while other parts of the country are freezing with snow, we were out playing at the beach….Jacob’s amazing ‘find’……was a moment at the end of our time at the cove. We were all beginning to pack up and head out. I knew my kiddos had spent every ounce of energy playing, digging, climbing, observing…..so I wanted to give them a snack for some pick-me-up energy before we headed to the uphill trail back to the car. I pulled out my tupperware full of canned peaches. I asked them to sit on a rock together, hold the tupperware carefully between the two of them so that the syrupy sweetness wouldn’t drip out and enjoy the snack.

kids eating peaches on a rock, melt my heartThis moment right here melted my mama heart. This sweetness between siblings. They sat together sharing a snack, but more than that, sharing with each other the delights of the day. From a distance I could hear them telling each other about the great parts of the day. Their hearts were bonding as they listened so intently to each other’s favorites of the adventure. Completely unsolicited. There was no mama there guiding the discussion. This was a brother and sister sharing their happy hearts with each other. They were both completely full to the brim with joy from the day…..and it was spilling over to sweet, sweet happiness in their conversation. These are the magical days for a mama.

Thank you Lord for this day. Thank you for the blessings. I have so very much to be thankful for. I give you all the praise for all that you’ve created. I thank you for the love that Jacob and Natalie have for each other. I thank you for meaningful friendships with other amazing homeschool moms and kids. I thank you that I have the privilege of being a mama. I thank you for the joy of homeschooling. Thank you for today’s joy.

Amen.

kids eating peaches on a rock, melt my heart

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