Posted by: Joel Zehring | September 20, 2009

Video: Nathan on Safari

Last week, we toured the Reid Park Zoo before opening. Nathan is the one in the white onesie and jeans. Not the one swinging around the cage.

If you’re not a member of your local zoo, you should check into it.

Music by State Shirt

YouTube – Nathan on Safari

Posted by: Joel Zehring | August 23, 2009

Church Hopping

Donna, Nathan and I have been visiting churches lately, in search of a place to call our spiritual home. We’ve been splitting time between institutional churches and house churches.

We feel like God is calling us to look for a few key characteristics:

  • We want to meet with believers who follow the Bible as God’s inerrant, infallible word. So far, we seem to be batting 1.000 with the churches we’ve visited.
  • We would love to participate in open-format meetings, rather than sermon-centered services. There’s nothing wrong with sermons, we’re just looking for something a little more spontaneous. We’d like to see how Christ moves through all the people in the room sharing and teaching (women and men participating equally). Also, we’d love to make lunch or dinner a part of our weekly meeting.
  • We want Nathan to participate with us in the meetings as much as possible. This means that we have to be a okay with a certain amount of baby noise and baby wrangling.

Perhaps Donna can blog or comment about this and add or clarify how God is leading us right now. If you know of anything like what we’re looking for in Northwest Tucson, let us know.

Posted by: Joel Zehring | July 9, 2009

California Trip, Take Two

Because we just can’t get enough of the Golden State.
We met up with Robin and her son Bailey (minus Dave) to hang at the Santa Ana Zoo. The locals call it the Monkey Zoo for the following reason: it contains 50 monkeys of varying types. A major donor to the zoo actually stipulated that the facility maintain a monkey count of no less than 50, with the consequence of pulling their funding if the zoo was ever found with fewer than 50 monkeys. This place has a lot of monkeys. Every pathway has enclosures with at least one type of monkey.

Nathan seemed to enjoy himself enough, but the real life of the party was Bailey, the train aficionado. The Monkey Zoo has a small-scale train ride that loops around a few of the areas, and Bailey was all over it. Before we even got in the front gate, he was “choo-choo”ing.

Nathan wasn’t too impressed with the ocean, but he loved the sand. His hands were embedded in the stuff, except for the times when he was trying to sneak a taste. Donna and I took turns running interference and taking pictures. We both agree Nathan’s hat makes him look like Papa.

On Sunday morning, we visited Donna’s old church stomping grounds in Huntington Beach. What used to be called First Baptist is now called Beachpoint, complete with a brand new lead pastor, Bill Stafferi. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to hear him preach, but we did get to hear about some very exciting and blessed work that Beachpoint members are spearheading in Niger.
Nathan spent the service in the nursery eating cheese puffs and generally charming the sitters, included our friend Lisa.
Posted by: Joel Zehring | June 15, 2009

Disneyland in Four Days



We hit up the Magic Kingdom in some bite-sized sessions the other week. Each day, after Nathan woke up from his morning nap, we would head over to the park and spend a few hours walking around and riding a couple mellow rides. We’d leave each day to meet up with friends or family for dinner.

Disneyland is kind of the old standard for family entertainment, while California Adventure serves as the proving ground for all the crazy new ideas that Disney has cooking. The lagoon-thing in California Adventure is full of construction equipment as they install some new-fangled water light show. Mulholland Madness is going away to make room for… something that I can’t remember. This is a bummer, because I like the old-school, state-fair vibe of the ride.

We met up with Donna’s junior high friend Robin and her husband Dave for dinner after one of our theme park afternoons. Dinner was awesome, but the best part was watching the European Cup Championship game that Dave recorded. It was the first full football match that I’d seen since the World Cup in 2006.

Our last day of Disney craziness found us meeting up with a Tucson friend that relocated back to SoCal. Her kids are older than Nathan, so it was kind of like an afternoon of preview for the next 4 or 5 years.

Posted by: Joel Zehring | June 5, 2009

Nathan is Chewbacca

Can anyone say Star Wars pre-prequel?

Nathan is Chewbacca

Posted by: Joel Zehring | June 5, 2009

Night at “Night at the Museum”

Donna and I saw “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian” last night and we were pleasantly surprised by how much we liked it. It kind of felt like a mix between a Saturday morning cartoon and a comedy hour hosted by Ben Stiller. With a lot of CG thrown in for the kids.

Ben Stiller bounces from one comedy actor to another, showcasing their accents and comedic timing. Stiller has a few funny parts, but he isn’t as central as the first movie.¬†Amy Adams plays Giselle, er, I mean, Amelia Earhart. She spends the movie saying bouncy things like “jimmy-jacked”, as well as waxing poetic about how wonderful adventure is.

Don’t expect any kind of character development or plot twists. Do expect Hank Azaria to deliver several funny bits with a hilarious lisp. 3 stars out of two possible thumbs up.

Posted by: Joel Zehring | April 15, 2009

Update on that kid

Nathan recently completed six months of life, and we took him to the doctor to ensure another six months (and hopefully more). We learned that he’s a whopping 18+ lbs., and 27 inches long. The doctor had plenty of positive feedback for us about his development. We’re on track to feed him more solid foods and even some dairy. We’re also expecting a tooth any time now, based on the incessant drooling that keeps all his clothes soaked from his chin to his belly button.

We also got Nathan up to Grammy and Grandpa’s house for Easter. He was good as gold, smiling and playing with everyone around. He even got some sleep before making the drive home.

Of course, for the lifetime view, you can simply check out the slideshow.

Posted by: Joel Zehring | March 4, 2009

Changing it up

Some big changes for Donna, Nathan and I lately. Donna and I decided after a lot of prayer and discussion that we should end our time of ministry at Alive Church. Several factors played in to the decision. Suffice to say, we really want to work toward getting Donna home full-time with Nathan.
Additionally, Donna and I have been considering alternate church formats. It started when Donna came home from a conference over a year ago asking this question: if we only had the Bible to inform our decisions about church, what would it look like? We’re still talking and researching and praying, but we’re honing in on some styles that resonate with us.
From Photos of Nathan
As for Nathan, it seems like there’s something new every week. He’s rolling over from back-to-belly and belly-to-back. He’s talking… well, he’s doing his version of talking. Every so often, we can even get him to giggle. He’s awesome, and we’re really blessed to have such a healthy baby.
Posted by: Joel Zehring | January 24, 2009

Nathan and Grammy

Nathan is all smiles when he’s hanging out with his Grammy. Even though Donna’s at camp this weekend, Nathan is soldiering on.

Posted by: Joel Zehring | January 18, 2009

A day off is anything but…

No school on Monday, huh? As soon as I told Donna, the phone rang, and we started making plans.

  • Some friends from work are headed over for game night.
  • I’m pretty sure we’re the last house in the neighborhood with their Christmas lights still up. At least we’ve unplugged them.
  • I need to change the oil in my car.
  • A long time ago, I used to skateboard. On a day off like this, there was no question where I’d be. Maybe I’ll try to roll around the neighborhood.
  • We should take Nathan for a walk, too. That guy is pasty like his dad.

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