Ten places to take your kids — Yahoo’s list and mine

From Yahoo Travel: 10 Places to Take Your Kids Before They Grow Up

Here they are:

  1. The Brooklyn Bridge
  2. The Pacific Coast Highway
  3. Niagara Falls
  4. New Orleans
  5. Devil’s Tower
  6. Mount Rushmore & The Crazy Horse Memorial
  7. Dinosaur Valley (Glen Rose, Texas)
  8. Gettysburg National Park
  9. National Air and Space Museum
  10. The Grand Canyon

My kids have been to Niagara Falls, Devil’s Tower (which is our camping disaster family memory), and Mount Rushmore. I’ve been to the Pacific Coast Highway (my childhood  memories include car sickness), New Orleans (a rather adult-oriented city in my mind; why is it on the kids’ list?), and the National Air and Space Museum.

One doesn’t have to Texas to see great dinosaur footprints. We live just a couple miles from Dinosaur Ridge, which is west of Denver.

My thumbs up to taking the kids to Niagara Falls, Devil’s Tower, Mount Rushmore, the National Air and Space Museum, and the Grand Canyon (I’ve never been there).

For what its worth, here is my list of ten great places I’ve taken my kids to, in no particular order:

  1. Yellowstone National Park — How in the world did this not make the Yahoo list?
  2. The Eiffel Tower, Paris — I’m sure it beats the Brooklyn Bridge hands down.
  3. Bucharest, Romania — Doesn’t make most people’s list of top spots, but my children have tons of wonderful memories of spending over five years of their childhoods in Romania.
  4. Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, Utah — A wonderful family vacation.
  5. Mountain biking near Red Lodge, Montana, and Reutte, Austria — I wish I could do this with the family a whole lot more often.
  6. Great nature museums — The Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana, and the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.
  7. Great art museums — The Louvre and Musee d’Orsay in Paris, the Alte Pinakothek in Munich, and the St. Louis Art Museum.
  8. St. Louis, Missouri — Free zoo, free art museum, Missouri Botanical Gardens, St. Louis Cardinals baseball games.
  9. Beartooth Highway, Montana and Wyoming — The most amazing and scenic highway in America.
  10. Whitewater rafting, Arkansas River, Colorado — I did this with two of my kids this summer, plus rappelling.

Places we haven’t been that I’d like to take my kids to:

  1. The Grand Canyon — my dream trip.
  2. Glacier National Park, Montana — I’ve been there, but the kids haven’t.
  3. Ekalaka and Miles City, Montana — I had to go there as a kid, why shouldn’t they? And the museum in Ekalaka has a two-headed calf!

Grace and Peace

P.S. The entire family says, “No, not Miles City and Ekalaka!”

Father’s Day 2009 #2

One thing I do to “tell the story” to my children is send an email to the whole family several times per week, with insights I have had from the Scriptures. Here is an example of the “A Note From Dad” emails that I send (and that my kids—soon all four will be teenagers—actually read much of the time):


A Note From Dad 5/24/09
Isaiah 25

Isaiah 25:1, 6-9

O Lord, you are my God;
I will exalt you; I will praise your name,
for you have done wonderful things,
plans formed of old, faithful and sure.

On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples
a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine,
of rich food full of marrow, of aged wine well refined.
And he will swallow up on this mountain
the covering that is cast over all peoples,
the veil that is spread over all nations.
He will swallow up death forever;
and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces,
and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth,
for the Lord has spoken.
It will be said on that day,
“Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us.
This is the Lord; we have waited for him;
let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation..”

I love the book of Isaiah. It is my favorite book of the Prophets, and up there among my favorites of the Old Testament. It speaks of judgment over the wickedness of the world (including the wickedness of God’s people), but also contains many passages of hope.

This passage in Isaiah 25 refers to three things that give great hope:

  • Deliverance for Israel and for all nations (that’s us) will come from “this mountain,” which refers to Jerusalem. Our deliverance comes through Christ, who was sacrificed on “this mountain.”
  • We look forward to a great feast. We have a taste of this now in our fellowship with God through Christ. We will enjoy this feast forever in eternity. The feast is figurative, representing not just to food, but to an everlasting life of the joy and goodness of knowing God.
  • The “covering that is cast over all peoples” is death, which is the universal affliction of the human race. We will all die (unless we are alive when Christ returns), but that death is a temporary thing.

“Let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation.”

With great joy in Christ,

Dad

Father’s Day 2009 #1

The following item was originally posted in June 2006. I have added it to my blog recycling program. Because I have new readers of The GeoChristian, I will occasionally go back and re-use some of my favorite blog entries.

In my wide margin Bible, I mark an “F” in the margin to denote verses about the family. As I have done this, I have seen more clearly my responsibilities as a father. The most common command or exhortation in the Scriptures in regards to parenting is to teach our children about the wonders of God:

For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice, so that the Lord may bring to Abraham what he has promised him. (Genesis 18:19)

You shall tell your son on that day, ‘It is because of what the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt.’ (Exodus 13:8)

Only take care, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things that your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. Make them known to your children and your children’s children. (Deuteronomy 4:9)

And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. (Deuteronomy 6:6-7)

When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever. (Joshua 4:6-7)

O God, we have heard with our ears,
our fathers have told us,
what deeds you performed in their days,
in the days of old. (Psalm 44:1)

So even to old age and gray hairs,
O God, do not forsake me,
until I proclaim your might to another generation,
your power to all those to come. (Psalm 71:18)

Things that we have heard and known,
that our fathers have told us.
We will not hide them from their children,
but tell to the coming generation
the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might,
and the wonders that he has done. (Psalm 78:3-4)

But we your people, the sheep of your pasture,
will give thanks to you forever;
from generation to generation we will recount your praise. (Psalm 79:13)

I will sing of the steadfast love of the Lord, forever;
with my mouth I will make known your faithfulness to all generations. (Psalm 89:1)

One generation shall commend your works to another,
and shall declare your mighty acts. (Psalm 145:4)

Hear, my son, your father’s instruction,
and forsake not your mother’s teaching. (Proverbs 1:8)

Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction,
and be attentive, that you may gain insight. (Proverbs 4:1)

Train up a child in the way he should go;
even when he is old he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6)

The father makes known to the children your faithfulness. (Isaiah 38:19)

Tell your children of it,
and let your children tell their children,
and their children to another generation. (Joel 1:3)

Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)

Being that I am not much of a talker by nature, this is something I need to be very intentional about or it doesn’t happen. But when I stumble in the telling of the story of God’s grace to my children, I pick up and keep on going. They need to hear it and see it from me daily. Just as in the Old Testament, the people were to tell their children over and over about what God had done to save Israel in the exodus, we are to tell our children over and over about what God has done in creation and redemption.

Grace and Peace

(Scripture quotes are from the English Standard Version)