Video Games for Kids, Not Easy!

We’ve got an X-Box, PlayStation (original), a couple of DS’ and of course the MAME Arcade Machine (see other blog post)

The Arcade machine works well for kids games, since the older arcade games are relatively harmless.  On the other hand, nowadays it is a PAIN to find games that are fun, but also appropriate for young kids.

That being said, some of the best we found are the LEGO games (Star Wars, and Indiana Jones).  We got the Indiana Jones for the DS’, and they are great.  You can “kill” the bad guys, but it ends up just being a couple of LEGO’s falling apart, which does not really translate into any violence (IMHO).  Same with Star Wars, which I just got them for the XBOX.

The Mario games are good too (especially Mario Cart) as they typically dont have any “killing” or mature themes, but end up being knocking a guy off the screen, or making them dizzy.

Both types are challenging enough for the kids to learn, but not too hard.  (some of the Sonic and Crash Bandicoot type games seem to be too fast paced, and they get bored trying to learn ’em) Also, both have a “play away” style, and no pressuring time limits, etc, which my daughter seems to hate!

I am constantly looking for other games, so if you have any good ideas, let me know!

(on a side note, I just got Crimson Skies for the XBOX for $2.99!!!  …and it is a COOL game, though has some mature themes, so I wouldn’t call it a young kids game)


Bible reading…its not been easy for me to stay focused.  BSF helped greatly, but my Bible study ended soon after I stopped going to BSF (due to many other obligations) In about mid-April is where I ended up around Matthew 13. Since then I got hooked on using E-Sword. Its free bible software that you can use for study, bible memorization and also (key point) to help you remember to read the Bible! I’ve got it set up for reading from Monday to Friday, through the end of the year to finish the New Testament, which is only about 2 chapters a morning. When I turn on my computer, it starts riht up, and the next 2 chapters are on the screen (waiting for me and my cup o’ joe!)

Its worked out real well, and I haven’t missed a day yet! If I am real busy in the morning with work, I just leave it open until I can take 5-10 minutes.

I highly recommend it! Its free (and you can purchase/download version of the Bible you like), though a donation is recommended (and would be nice!)

Here is the link, if you missed it above:

e-Sword Home

GFFL Fantasy Football 2008 Draft!

The GFFL draft was this last weekend at my house. Den came down from St Louis, along with a bunch of the local guys. A lot of golf, cards & racing, as well as football! It was a good time. Check the Photo Gallery on our website for more pics! People below from left: Troy (or one of the Knights of Ni!), Pat, Warren, Den, me

GFFL Draft

Damascus Road

The Damascus Road page on my site showed up about 2 months ago.  Who is Damascus Road, you ask?  That is my parents group that cut an album when I was growing up.  I got a copy of the (now very rare) album from my Gram, and was able to rip some MP3’s as well as scan in the jacket.

Yes, that is me & Den in the top picture, on the back cover, far left, matching striped shirt.  Ah, the Seventies!

If you didn’t click above….  click here

Netflix is cool!

Typically not one to tout anyones products too much, but in this case, we’ve been gettin’ movies from Netflix back and forth, no hassles, and like the service. Waiting on the next movie, just got this email:

Dear Matthew,

As you may know, we had issues with our shipping systems this week. As a result, we didn’t ship DVDs to you in a timely manner, and you likely didn’t receive email letting you know we got a DVD back from you. Our shipping systems are working again, and any outstanding DVD shipments are being mailed today (Friday).

We pride ourselves in delighting you, and we’ve let you down. We apologize, and we will issue a 15% credit to your account in the next few days. You don’t need to do anything. Your credit will automatically be applied to your next billing statement.

Again, we apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your understanding. If you need further assistance, please call us at ….

-The Netflix Team

Since I did not even know they were late, and I got a discount…COOL! 🙂

Rocking the Boat

By Max Lucado (

God has enlisted us in his navy and placed us on his ship. The boat has one purpose—to carry us
safely to the other shore.

This is no cruise ship; it’s a battleship. We aren’t called to a life of leisure; we are called to a life
of service. Each of us has a different task. Some, concerned with those who are drowning, are
snatching people from the water. Others are occupied with the enemy, so they man the cannons
of prayer and worship. Still others devote themselves to the crew, feeding and training the crew

Though different, we are the same. Each can tell of a personal encounter with the captain, foreach
has received a personal call. He found us among the shanties of the seaport and invited us to
follow him. Our faith was born at the sight of his fondness, and so we went.

We each followed him across the gangplank of his grace onto the same boat. There is one captain
and one destination. Though the battle is fierce, the boat is safe, for our captain is God. The ship
will not sink. For that, there is no concern.

There is concern, however, regarding the disharmony of the crew. When we first boarded we
assumed the crew was made up of others like us. But as we’ve wandered these decks, we’ve
encountered curious converts with curious appearances. Some wear uniforms we’ve never seen,
sporting styles we’ve never witnessed. “Why do you look the way you do?” we ask them.

“Funny,” they reply. “We were about to ask the same of you.”

The variety of dress is not nearly as disturbing as the plethora of opinions. There is a group, for
example, who clusters every morning for serious study. They promote rigid discipline and somber
expressions. “Serving the captain is serious business,” they explain. It’s no coincidence that they
tend to congregate around the stern.

There is another regiment deeply devoted to prayer. Not only do they believe in prayer, they
believe in prayer by kneeling. For that reason you always know where to locate them; they are at
the bow of the ship.

And then there are a few who staunchly believe real wine should be used in the Lord’s Supper.
You’ll find them on the port side.

Still another group has positioned themselves near the engine. They spend hours examining the
nuts and bolts of the boat. They’ve been known to go below deck and not come up for days. They
are occasionally criticized by those who linger on the top deck, feeling the wind in their hair and
the sun on their face. “It’s not what you learn,” those topside argue. “It’s what you feel that

And, oh, how we tend to cluster.

Some think once you’re on the boat, you can’t get off. Others say you’d be foolish to go
overboard, but the choice is yours.

Some believe you volunteer for service; others believe you were destined for the service before
the ship was even built.

Some predict a storm of great tribulation will strike before we dock; others say it won’t hit until
we are safely ashore.

There are those who speak to the captain in a personal language. There are those who think
such languages are extinct.

There are those who think the officers should wear robes, there are those who think there
should be no officers at all, and there are those who think we are all officers and should all wear

And, oh, how we tend to cluster.

And then there is the issue of the weekly meeting at which the captain is thanked and his words
are read. All agree on its importance, but few agree on its nature. Some want it loud, others quiet.
Some want ritual, others spontaneity. Some want to celebrate so they can meditate; others
meditate so they can celebrate. Some want a meeting for those who’ve gone overboard. Others
want to reach those overboard but without going overboard and neglecting those on board.

And, oh, how we tend to cluster.

The consequence is a rocky boat. There is trouble on deck. Fights have broken out. Sailors have
refused to speak to each other. There have even been times when one group refused to
acknowledge the presence of others on the ship. Most tragically, some adrift at sea have chosen not to
board the boat because of the quarreling of the sailors.

“What do we do?” we’d like to ask the captain. “How can there be harmony on the ship?” We
don’t have to go far to find the answer.

(…from, upwords.fellow-ship.pdf)