Sunday, December 27, 2009
Saturday, December 05, 2009
My kids say that I volunteer for too many things and after a day like today I have to disagree with them. You cannot give too much of yourself to others because you get so much more in return. I haven’t tested this theory but that is my gut feel. Today I spent several hours to enrich the lives of over 500 kids. Talk about return on investment!
Tuesday, December 01, 2009
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
Thank You Father for waking me this morning even though I may never know why or who I was interceding for, thank You for giving me that special time and for trusting me.
How did we come so far from the truths that guided and shaped this nation? How did we move from complete dependence on God, our Creator, to complete separation from God? Forgive us Father!
Sunday, November 22, 2009
So right now here are some of the things that come to mind...
I am thankful for Tim Jackson's safe arrival home from Afghanistan.
I am so thankful for my dear friend Kendra and her godly example.
I am so thankful for my extended family and church family.
I am so thankful for smiles.
I am thankful for His Word and His presence.
I am thankful for laughter.
I am thankful for God's abundant mercy on my sisters.
I am thankful for my parents.
I am thankful for the beauty all around me.
I am thankful for choice, freedom, and opportunity.
I am thankful for blankets.
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Jennifer had a great time and really enjoyed the music, drama, and speakers and informed me that "We are DEFINITELY coming back next time!" I could only smile because if there is anything I have realized in my life it is the necessity to ensure my children have as much a grounding in their faith and as many resources available as they need to stay rooted in their own faith. My faith will never be enough for them, the storms of life are going to come, and life is not always fair, pretty, easy, or even logical. When bad things happen to good people they need to know Who to turn to, what to believe in, and where to go for help. Experiences like this weekend have opened many doors for Jennifer and I to communicate about issues she may not otherwise felt comfortable talking about. To say that I am thrilled is such an understatement.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Devotion time has even been suffering and I have determined not to let that continue another day. I cannot say that there is one specific thing that has set me back but it is mostly a combination of trying to get too much crammed into a day. I am glad that we are adjusting to the Daylight Saving Time this weekend as the days are getting so short and the nights so long. I praise God that His mercy is new every morning and He never slumbers nor sleeps. I love that I have awesome Christian radio to listen to every morning and afternoon while I drive and that God has continually shown me when I start to lose focus. I am so very blessed.
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Jennifer is really keeping me on my toes with school and life changes but she is willing to heed the Lord's voice and is trying to make good choices. Jordan is feeling more comfortable with Flag Football and has 4 more games before they are done and I think it is a mixed blessing as the weather gets colder he is not as happy about being outside in shorts. He is doing great in school and is 'bored' as usual but I hope that he takes that boredom and focuses it on his spelling. He is really loving the time spent with his friend, Eli, and his cousin, Andy.
Here is a snapshot of Papa and Jennifer watching a funny on You Tube.
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Labor Day Camping Trip with family & friends:
Jordan's First Day of Fourth Grade:
Jennifer's First Day as a Freshman:
Upward Flag Football
Jordan took 2nd Place in his North Idaho State Fair entry in the Lego Division. (I didn't get pictures unfortunately. He also joined the Upward Flag Football team and has played in two games so far. He has been helping his Papa and cousin Emily build a doll house and has been helping Papa do all sorts of 'guy' things. Like using power tools!! I walked down to the shop the other night and there was Jordan using a grinder to unweld some wheels off a frame and spark were flying everywhere. I thought at first he was welding! After my heart stopped pounding, I watched in amazement as he and his Papa finished the task like they had been working together for years. Jordan also taught me how to ride the four wheeler and took me on an adventure through the woods. He is doing well in school and doesn't necessarily like it but has accepted it.
Jennifer on the other hand has blossomed and grown by leaps and bounds and has liked High School so far. She comes home bubbling every day and is taking Acting I as an elective. I knew she would love it and am so glad that she decided to take the class. She has been to her first High School Football Game and two soccer games. She wants to be involved and that is a long cry from a year ago. Oh, and she really enjoys her Youth Group (although I think I already mentioned that)and even attended a Girls Sleepover the Friday before school started. She is making friends and working hard at everything before her. I am so proud of her and the good choices she is making!!
I am trying to find out just how to make time for myself and still get things done and mostly trying to find time to workout. The weather is starting to change and soon the cold will make it very difficult to run or bike and so I am trying to get creative. I was spoiled at Motorola with the full gym onsite and the flexible schedule not to mention the short commute. I am not complaining just realizing how good I had it as far as work and workout scheduling go. I will take family over those things any day though. Tonight I had my brother and family over for dinner and it was so good to just sit, break bread and fellowship with those I love and have missed for so long. I wish we were even closer and not 20 some miles apart but when I consider how little I have seen them in the past 20 years the miles don't seem so great anymore. God is indeed gracious and good!
Monday, September 14, 2009
God is still faithful, still on His throne, and still holding me through every day. I see a theme here… still. I would not complain about a thing as we have spent the past several weeks building relationships with family, friends, and co-workers. I am getting prepared for the next phase that God has in store for us and for me especially. I want to grow and thrive and not simply exist here where He has planted us. I want to attain new levels of spiritual growth that causes those around me to be curious and seek Him more. Jennifer turned 14 this month and we celebrated with the family twice! It wasn’t really planned that way but it turned out to be wonderful. We had pizza and cupcakes at the house the Saturday before her birthday and then the night of her birthday I surprised her by taking her to Olive Garden and I made a ‘real’ birthday cake for her. We had the whole family there and Jennifer was so happy to have us all celebrating with her. She was blessed with greetings from friends and family from Alaska to Maine. I am so proud of my young lady who desires above all things to please God.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
We have been able to enjoy the lakes nearby and Jordan has gone fishing twice already with one catch. He is ready to go out on the lake early at the end of this week. He is taking a Hunter Safety Course this week with his cousin, Andy, and is both nervous and excited about the tests over the next two days. I know that he will do great!
Jennifer has discovered the local library system and made some new friends at Youth Group! We have attended a small church the past two weeks with about 100 worshippers. Last Sunday night at Bible Study the pastor said something that really resonated with me because it was an echo of our family prayers.
We will attend until I have a definite answer or confirmation but I feel like we will be at Calvary Christian Fellowship for a while.
Thursday, July 09, 2009
I do not think I can describe our last three weeks without sounding like I am either complaining or boasting but I will try my best. Our first weekend was full of unpacking enough stuff to make it through the first few weeks of work, making a cake to celebrate (Father’s Day, Retirement, New Job, Summer Solstice), and of course Church and a celebration BBQ with the ‘family’ (brother & family, all three parents, and us). I only had Wednesday and Thursday to get things ready because Friday I met my new boss for lunch and spent the day in meetings.
Monday, June 22nd was my first day on the new job. Grammy flew over to Seattle, WA that same day and it was just the kids, Papa & G’ma JoJo and I for the next four days. Friday, the 26th, my sister, Nichole, and her two teens and two friends of my nephew came over for Hoopfest and a visit. Dad pulled the RV up to the house and we all spread out on the floors, beds, etc. It was a busy, fun, hot, and exciting to experience Hoopfest and catch up with family. Jake and his two buddies won their first two games and lost two before heading off to Basketball camp at Gonzaga. Nichole and Kiley hung out with us and on Wednesday my sister-in-love flew in with two more nieces, Sydney & Olivia. Jake came back from camp and that night we had a great dinner with Corrina before she flew home the next day and the rest of the gang headed out to Icicle Creek Rd. Campground near Leavenworth, WA to go camping.
For the 4th of July weekend, Jason, Nichole’s husband, met us on Thursday with their RV and Dad, JoAnn, Sydney, Olivia, Nichole, Jake, Kiley, Jennifer & Jordan caravanned up in the other RV and Nic’s minivan. I was at work. (I am NOT complaining!) I left work and finally got on the road to meet up with everyone about 5:30. It is a four hour drive or so and I finally made it into the camp around 10:30pm. I was so grateful they had the tent already set up!! Kids and I slept in one tent and Jake & Sydney slept in another with everyone else in the RV’s. Did I mention that Jason brought their two dogs and Dad & Jo brought their two also? Yes, four dogs, and eleven people camping our for three and a half days. FUN! (No hook-ups for the RV’s but water pumps and facilities to use) I got some good mountain bike rides in and a nice run. Absolutely gorgeous area and lots of fun on the 4th of July in the town of Leavenworth. A Christian festival, Freedom Fest, was going on in the park next to the public swim pool and so JoAnn, Jennifer & I hung out (after shopping of course) while the rest of the gang went swimming. The whole weekend was memorable with gold panning, hiking, biking, making S’Mores, hobo stew, jiffy popcorn on the fire, playing games, and just sitting around watching the kids shoot the blow gun and try to hit the targets. Lots of ‘catching up’ with family and just enjoying God’s creation.
Sunday, we all packed up and Nichole & family headed back to Mt. Vernon, WA and we headed back to Spirit Lake, ID. We made it about an hour down the road before we had some RV issues. We spent about four hours trying to get the slider to go back into place before we loaded four kids, two adults, and two dogs into my Elantra for the remaining 3 ½ hour drive. Dad stayed with the RV and we left him there to call AAA. It was a long day and a short night and I went to work Monday morning amazed it was just the beginning of week three. Where does the time go?
Friday, June 26, 2009
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Day Five: We are headed to Idaho but by my calculations we will not be able to push much farther than Missoula, MT and what do you know I was right! (Could have something to do with the fact that I was driving) We started the day out right with a great breakfast at Cracker Barrel and a full tank of fuel. We drove on and just enjoyed the scenery, the wildlife and the music. We stopped for the night at the Red Lion Inn where they had a great hot tub, awesome hot breakfast, wonderful staff & plenty of parking (on street) We all slept rather soundly and since we knew we were just hours from our destination we were all pretty relaxed, excited, and in great attitude.
Things were going great and we were blessed with some great K-Love music to roll down the road and sing along with. I pulled into a rest area to make a much needed coffee relief break and the truck would not start when we got back from the facilities. I floored it until I was sure it was flooded. I waited and turned everything off including the radio. It seemed to be draining the battery when I tried to turn it over. Finally after more prayer and about 5 more minutes (seemed like half an hour) it finally started up. Whew! I called Penske again, speed dial no less, and reported the weird behavior. As we drove along , Grammy Elaine remembered some old friends of ours from Kodiak, AK who had relocated to Minnesota and thought it would be neat if we could figure out where they lived. So I suggested she Google them and low and behold they not only still lived in MN but were directly on our route about 40 minutes up the road. She is brave and so called the number she found and before we knew it we were having lunch at Perkins restaurant in Fergus Falls, MN. with my former doctor and his wife, Rud & Timmie Wasson. I told Jennifer that it was sort of weird meeting my pediatrician for lunch after not seeing them for 32 years! It turns out that they were just like I remembered and so many memories came flooding back when I saw Timmie that it was like rereading an old favorite book. I hope to stay in touch from here on out.
Leaving the Perkins I was glad that the truck, nicknamed Penny, started right up and drove like a dream~ finally! Well, maybe I spoke too soon because we passed Fargo, ND and a yellow warning light appeared on the dash that we hadn’t seen before. I pulled over and pulled out the operator’s manual. There on page 39 I found the icon displayed on the dash and it said it was an Emissions Failure Warning. I speed dialed Penske SOS team once again and reported the warning and asked what they wanted me to do about it. Well, they talked me through some engine regeneration steps and that failed to work and they had me try it a few more times after turning Penny off and then back on. I finally asked if we could move off the shoulder to a more populated location in case it didn’t start again or we actually had to wait for a service vehicle. They had us drive on up to the next safe place to stop with facilities. Jamestown, ND. They call me back and tell me to push on to Bismarck, ND even though the warning light is still on and they will send someone to look at the truck when we arrive. They offered to pay for our accommodations and extended our contract due to the many delays. So we push on in the wind and the rain with yellow warning lights blazing from the dashboard and K-Love blasting from the radio! We went online and got a room at the Radisson for the night and after arriving around 10:30 pm I called Penske to let them know where we were and where the truck was parked. Eventually, we settled in for some much needed rest.
1:28am, yes, AM as in EARLY in the morning, I wake up to my phone ringing and it is the Penske guys letting me know I needed to leave the keys for the truck at the front desk. I stumble downstairs and try to speak coherently to the clerk and head back to bed. I don’t sleep well because I keep expecting a call saying they are taking the truck or they have to move our stuff to another one… something?! I finally get out of the bed at 4:55am and head to the gym and hot tub. If I am going to be awake I may as well be doing something constructive and so I take my Bible with me and spend some time with Jesus. I wait to hear back from Penske and they haven’t called by 8am so I call and wait for a call back because the one who handled the call in the night was not the same one on call in the morning. We finally get the word that the problems are all due to the truck being TOO new! Don’t worry until it quits running just keep on trucking! So we do just that.
Sunday, June 14, 2009
We met my second cousin, Jenna, and her financee, Wade, for lunch and it was great to meet them both and get to know them. I am SOOOOooooo old that I haven't met most of my cousins and second cousins because I have been gone from Alaska so long!!
Jennifer got to do some of her school shopping and I really enjoyed spending the day with her! She found 5 pairs of jeans and 2 scarves and a locket inscribed with a verse from I Corinthians on it. She only spent $63 from her school-clothes fund and got all her jeans from Macy's!! I have a VID for sure!!! (see earlier post!)
We decided that we weren't going to get very far with the stop at the Penske center, the visit with family, and the shopping excursion so we went onto Priceline and got a room at the Doubletree for the night. Nice warm cookies, nice long soak in the hot tub, and a nice long rest on the comfortable bed was just what the Lord had in mind for me!
Thursday, June 11, 2009
We are stopped at the Radisson in Bismarck, ND after four long days of various trials, numerous laughs, lots of wildlife (both alive and dead), and many, many prayers. Thanks for all who are praying for us and remembering us in our travels.
Left Waukegan, IL around 9:45 and headed to the Penske place to have the car tow-dolly hooked up and the car loaded. I remembered that we still hadn't paid Jennifer's library fine for a book she had 'lost'. We will find it I am sure in Idaho! So I left Grammy with the truck and zipped over to Warren-Newport to pay the fine and do one last check on the internet for our first stop of the night. While walking into the library I remember that I didn't grab the 'last things to load' from the house. Panic set in for a minute because I was sure I had given out ALL of my house keys. I eventually listened to my very intelligent daughter (VID) and found one and was able to zip back to 324 S. Orchard and grab our passports, birth certificates, and other IMPORTANT documents! Praise God that He brought it to my rememberance BEFORE we were in North Dakota!!! Yes, I praise YOU Lord!!
Head back to Penske and get the car loaded on the truck and took a good long (very long!) look at the load we would be hauling and said several more prayers!! We are finally on the road, well at least for 5 miles. Note to driver: Check Tow-Dolly and load after first 5 miles and EVERY 50 miles thereafter.
Huh??? I asked the service man at Penske, "Is this for real? EVERY 50 miles!?!?" I explained how far we were driving and the time factor to stop every 50 miles on a 1800 mile trip and he finally said we would only need to do that on the first day. <
We stopped after 12 miles or so and everything is fine.
We headed up into Wisconsin stopping at the Pine Cone Restaurant in Madison for one last Eclair and Apple Fritter. Diet will start when we eventually arrive in Idaho! For anyone who has ever gone to Wisconsin Dells with me you will understand my affection with the Pine Cone. Think homemade baked goods meeting Paul Bunyan in both size and flavor. Yum!! I think Grammy enjoyed it too although she may be hating us by the end of this trip. Took her three days to finish one cinnamon roll! I wish I had thought to take more pictures. Kendra, I am not!
We stopped at a rest area outside of Eau Claire, WI and Jennifer noticed that the display on the dash was flashing Low Coolant Level** and there were a couple of warning lights staying on after I turned off the engine. (Backtrack here: I am not tall in stature and in order to see the display have to pull myself up to the top of the steering wheel since the column does not adjust. I cannot see the display while driving unless I lean way forward!) SO... I turned the truck back on and look more closely and try to figure out if this in something to be concerned about. After several different possibilities are considered I finally determined the display should have gone out and the warning lights should NOT stay on. So, I call Penske and describe the problem and ask for advice. "Where are you?" the man asks me. Uh, in Wisconsin. "Can you tell me the mile number?" You can fill in the blanks for the remainder of the conversation I am sure. Eventually, the Penske SOS team sends Edgar out to take a look. Edgar reports that it should be fine to drive it appears there is a faulty sensor and since it is such a new truck (only had 91 miles on it when we picked it up) there may be some kinks to work out. He recommended we head on to Eau Claire or Minneapolis and call Penske to take it to there mechanic in the morning. Penske calls back and tells us to stop in Eau Claire and take it to the service center there and NOT go on to MN. I was planning on stopping in Minneapolis to take Jennifer to the Mall of America so thought it would be much better to push on. However, it is THEIR truck.
We found a room at Days Inn - West in Eau Claire and eventually turned in for the day... It was a looonnngggg day at that. What I am leaving out is the 'Road Closed mishap', the 'Wimpy-wimpy-wimpy' giggles and all the other in betweens that would make this post another 5 pages. SO that wraps up day one. Praise God for His faithfulness because He did see us through!!!
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Indescribable! Chris Tomlin sings it best with the lyrics:
Indescribable, uncontainable, You placed the stars in the sky and You know
them by name. You are amazing God All powerful, untameable, Awestruck we fall to
our knees as we humbly proclaim You are amazing God
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
I will be able to be with the kids until we are moved and among family once again. Grammy Elaine flies into Chicago tomorrow and will spend 2 weeks or more with us before she goes back to Alaska to retire from Chevron Oil. We will have a busy two weeks but it will be so wonderful to see her again (Kauai was back in February after all!) and have fun doing the vacation scene with her and showing her all of our travel trips.
I will post more soon because the details are worth the praise report!!
Friday, May 22, 2009
I was hoping to get laid off from my job here in Illinois before we are ready to move but that doesn't look like it will happen. However, God has opened the door (it may seem extreme to most) for me to take Family Medical Leave for 12 weeks. If I am not laid off in that time I will submit my resignation. The plus to that is that I can continue the medical and dental coverage for the family. Why am I taking FMLA? Did I not just state we are all in good physical health??
Without revealing too much information that my children would feel invasive, I will just say that there have been some behavioural health issues within the family that have made it necessary to provide additional care and treatment. In order to "prevent harm to self and others" I have found it necessary to provide 24 hr care for one of my children. Is God still in control? ABSOLUTELY!! Does this mean a label for life? ABSOLUTELY NOT!! It means I have the means to care for my family and still take the steps needed for them to be ready to start the new schools in the fall and not worry about medical and dental coverage at this time. God doesn't always make it convenient or pretty but He ALWAYS makes a way!!! I am praising Him with every thought to our situation!
Our house is on the market. I am believing God to sell it since it is His house after all! I am going to move the kids out to Idaho and then come back in August (or earlier if laid off) to finish my season here at M.
I choose to walk by faith.
Now on a more practical note, if there is anyone here in Illinois who has room for a 40ft cargo container to be stored for several months please contact me ASAP. I have cargo and will have a container once the space is available to store it--for items to be shipped to Uganda for His Embrace and the ministry there. God has a plan for this I just haven't heard where He is going to stage everything while the container is being filled.
This past month my daughter has constantly reminded me of Psalm 62 and now I feel like we are ready for another word.
Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: Who
forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life
from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, Who
satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is restored like
Bless the Lord, all His works, in all places of His dominion. Bless the Lord, O my soul!Psalm 103:1-5, 22
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Friday, April 17, 2009
The sacrifices of God [are] a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. Ps. 51:17
The LORD is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit. Ps. 34:18
He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds. Ps. 147:3
Our Hope in Christ:
The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners;Is. 61:1 & Luke 4:18
Wednesday, April 08, 2009
Tomorrow I fly to Spokane, WA and will stay with my dear brother and family for two nights before flying back to Chicago. I am taking a step of faith that is the start of yet another faith journey. There is a sense of excitement and also a feeling of great responsibility as the understanding of what lies ahead is still not clear but I am stepping out in faith trusting my Lord to lead me step-by-step. Makes me think of Rich Mullins' song 'Sometimes By Step.'
Friday, April 03, 2009
"The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth,.." Exodus 34:6
Monday, March 30, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Thursday, March 05, 2009
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
Shop Class 201 - Electrical Wiring
Algebra not too exciting for Jennifer though she is a whiz at it!
Chess club (strategy)
History Lesson at the Renaissance Festival Student Days
- ► 2011 (24)
- ► 2010 (20)
- ▼ December (3)
- ► November (4)
- ► April (4)
- ► March (4)
- ► 2008 (67)
- ► 2007 (58)
- ► 2006 (13)