Big Trees and Big Views

We will leave for Kenya in 2 weeks. We are enjoying America until then. Actually we enjoyed it already. Now for two weeks of packing. . . . I like the last picture. I imagine Allison is checking the internet to be sure we have everything in the bear box that should go there, but she is probably playing Sudoku.

Largest tree in the world!

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Allison and camping.

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To the Mothers in My Life

First to my mother . . .

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Happy Mother’s Day to a great mother, a good friends, and a woman worthy of honor.

And then to the other, very important and special mother in our family’s life.

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From doing the grocery shopping,

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to teaching Sunday school,

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to her spirit of adventure, you would know she is a great woman.

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But when you see her kids gather so happily around her, most importantly, you know she is a great mother! Happy Mother’s Day to Allison.

The “gym”

While we’ve been home this year, we decided to try to make life more “normal:” we put the kids in school, we travel on the weekends only occasionally, we got a Sam’s card and a library card, we go out to eat, but not in a “let’s eat this because we won’t have it for the next few years” way. One of my concessions to the “normal” US life was to join the local Richardson rec center so that I can exercise out of the weather. It is one of my quiet pleasures to go ride the stationary bike at “the gym” as I call it. I take my Kindle and I read Middlemarch (it’s so insightful) and I enjoy feeling the burn deep in my buns. There is one big room with gigantic ceiling fans, three recumbent bikes, one regular bike, three or four treadmills, and about six elliptical machines, plus a few weight machines and a set of free weights and benches. Soft eighties music floats through the air, or just the shush of the machines in action.

There is a group of mixed ages and ethnicities who get together for a class at about 8:45. They give each other gentle fist bumps and stretch and talk about politics and local news. There are several nice trainers who have advanced-in-years clients. They exude patience and encouragement. There are a couple of fit moms who come and sweat on the machines a bit. I can smell man or two as soon as they enter the room– time to wash those workout clothes! As I pick up my card and sweatshirt on the way out, I can see into the front room, where some elderly Asian men play fierce rounds of table tennis, joking as they bend to pick up the escaping ball.

It is a shame we have so few of these community meeting places any more. I’m pleased to be a part of such a beautiful slice of life, a holdout of days gone by.

Home sweet home

(This was written three weeks ago, but not posted by accident.)

We have been in the US of A for three weeks now and it has been a whirlwind time.  Here is the shorthand version: week one: work on getting the kids in school— tours, testing, interviews.  Week two: kids start school, Will and Allison go interview in Meeker, Colorado.  Week three: family life during the week: school, homework, dinner, sleep; on the weekend, Mom and Dad go to interview in Bend, Oregon.  Now we are waiting in the Redmond airport during a long delay. 

The Lord has shown His great faithfulness is so many ways.  Supportive friends at church, excellent school environment and compassionate teachers, enjoyable time with our parents, welcoming reception on returning to BSF, spontaneous times catching up with friends. In this post, I want to thank Him publicly for our beautiful house. 

Will had put out a prayer request on the blog, letting people know that we needed a furnished house or furniture and a house in the Dallas area.  The very next day we heard from a friend that her church, First Baptist Richardson, had some houses for missionaries and she thought they could accommodate us, rent-free. I got teary reading her email. Within twenty-four hours, emails were flying between Peru and the house caretakers.  All was arranged.  The house is maybe ten blocks from Ruth, Will’s mom, the house where we lived last year, so we know the neighborhood and we have Grammy close by.  We are only about 15 minutes from my dad and about 15 minutes from the kids’ schools.  Here in the metroplex, that is a miracle.  We have three bedrooms— twin beds in the most boyish room, a double in a room with a big closet that has become a doll world, and a nice master bedroom with a cheerful color scheme.  When we walked in, we were astounded to find a beautifully decorated and updated house with everything we could need and even food in the fridge and the pantry. 

A couple of days later, I was amused to read in Nehemiah 9:25 “They took possession of houses filled with all kinds of good things, wells already dug, vineyards, olive groves and fruit trees in abundance. They ate to the full and were well-nourished; they reveled in your great goodness.” Reveling in God’s great goodness we are.  We have a generous Father.

Merry Christmas!

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Feliz Nochebuena from our family to yours!

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