Tuesday, May 30, 2017

FINISHING FURLOUGH

Furlough is coming to an end, but we are blessed by the many memories we have made.

At one of the homes we stayed at, we were able to enjoy some paddle boats while trying to spot a red-headed snake that would periodically poke his head up.

The race is on!
A stop at Lambert's Cafe is a given on the furlough trail.  Who needs to order a meal with the delicious throwed rolls and free sides?

We ended up having enough leftovers for lunch the next day.
It is always nice to find an outdoor park to enjoy, and this particular one was beautiful - complete with a miniature Statue of Liberty.

Wow - our children have really grown, right?
Sight and Sound Theaters is another stop we love to make on the furlough trail.  We were treated to a personal behind-the-scenes tour by one of the workers there.

Amazing special effects!
Life carries on with milestones.  Skyler is thrilled to have passed his sister in height and will probably pass me up by Christmas.  Shiloh has squeezed passed Stanley, so we will see if he catches up with Shane.

Skyler's "Little" Sister
We ask your prayers as these next four weeks will be stressful with the packing, appointments, decision making, saying good-byes, and flying out.  We need to remember to smile during these times.



Thursday, May 25, 2017

OUR FIRST COLLEGE GRADUATE


Is it possible?  How can we be old enough to have a college graduate?

Graduating Class of 2017
We rejoice with Shane in his accomplishment of finishing 4 years of college.  It has not been easy for him, particularly the first year having to adjust to American culture, but he persevered.  We surprised everyone by flying Stanley in for the graduation, and many tears were shed when he had to leave.

I love our family.
Having Pastor Bob Ross preach the commencement exercises was special for Keith and I since he was the vice-president of the college we graduated from and is now a supporting pastor.

Pastor Adam, Pastor Ross, Daniel (Shane's cousin) and Shane
We have seen growth in Shane's life and are thrilled with the next step God has prepared for him.  


Well done, Shane!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

BLESSED TO BE A MOM

This was the first time in 22 years of motherhood for me to be away from all of my children on Mother's Day.  Keith and I were blessed by the generosity of an Alaskan church to fly both of us to Alaska for a meeting that just happened to be on Mother's Day.  However, my children had many surprises awaiting for me when we returned, and I enjoyed each one.  In return, I thought I would write this post as a letter to them, my six blessings:


Dear Children,

I have been blessed.  So abundantly!  I love each one of you so much!  As I look back on the past 22 years of wearing the title "Mom," I smile.  I laugh.  We have made precious memories together.  

Remember --

- The child who emptied the whole bookshelf into the laundry basket
- The one who rinsed his toothbrush in the diaper pail
- The one who was actually named Seaton
- The fearless 4-year old warrior who proudly showed me the snake he had killed with a rock
- The baby who was 17 days overdue
- The quiet child who cut up the living room curtains and emptied 2 boxes of cereal because he was being neglected as I schooled the others
- The one who insisted on wearing mismatched shoes
- The baby who spit up so much that I changed my clothes up to 3 times a day
- The baby who liked to be held upside down

Remember all the chameleons, puppies, and roach and tick invasions?

You have lived through hair lice, chicken pox, maggots, giardia, mysterious rashes, a near drowning, a dogbite, and a fractured wrist and rib.  You have been in 42 states, crossed the equator more times than we can count, rafted the Nile, and had your picture in thousands of homes.  

I have been your seamstress, baker, encourager, teacher, party planner, nurse, doctor, comforter, travel coordinator, cook, camp director, and librarian.  I have loved "being there" for you.  Even as you go off to college and forget the time change and message me at 2:00 am,  I love to talk to you.  Even when I lose half a night's sleep staying up with you, I love to be the one to care for you.  

Motherhood is not for the faint of heart.  It is one of the hardest callings on earth.  As each of you leave the home, the heart strings are pulled tighter as the miles between us grow.  This time of life is difficult.  However, I am thankful that the distance doesn't erase my title.  I'm your mom always.  

I love you Shane, Stanley, Shae-Lynn, Shiloh, Skyler, and Savannah.  

Thanks for calling me "Mom."