June 24, 2009

Fun with Friends

Today the kids and I went here (it is just a 1 1/2 miles down the road from our house)...

...and had a picnic with a bunch of great friends.The babies were a big attraction for many of the kids...
...and so was the water

Moms and kiddos all had a great time!

June 23, 2009

CYIA Training

We just got home from two weeks at our CYIA (Christian Youth In Action) Training. This is a training that we do for teens in order to equip them to teach children in 5-Day Clubs, and to challenge the teens themselves in their own walk with the Lord. It is an intense two weeks of training and very exhausting for the staff. However, it is also a joy and a privilege to see how God moves and works in and through the lives of theses teens. He also does a little work on our own lives while we are there. :)
Much goes on during this time and it would be hard to capture it all but here are a few picture highlights from the time spent at the camp. I was not sure how this would all go this year having five young kids but the kids did awesome, so we are praising the Lord for that! This was the first year of Training where I considered packing winter coats and boots. It was very cold the first few days but eventually we moved to beatiful, warm days. Here are the girls all bundled up.


Here is one of the classes the students had to go through.

We were extremely excited to have my sister-in-law and her two kids at camp with us this year. My SIL helped in the kitchen and the kids had a blast playing with their cousins!

We set up a little nursery area in the dining hall. It made for a great place for the girls to roll around and play. They love to have the freedom to move.

Here is an example of one of the students teaching a Bible lesson. They are trained how to tell a Bible story and throughout the story pull out and share various points about the Gospel message.

This is the campfire down in this big sand pit on Saturday night. It wraps up what we call the Day of Prayer. It is an afternoon and eveing set aside for a whole bunch of activities focused on their discipleship.

Here is my sister-in-law with KK

She and I and my mother-in-law took all the kids to the zoo Saturday so they would have something to do during the Day of Prayer activities. We had a blast! Here is the little man with the otters.

The boys were fascinated with the lion.

The people here with Todd and I are our amazing staff. We are so thankful for each one of them and all the talents and gifts they bring to the team. On top of all that, we just have a lot of fun with them!

Here is my big man with his cousin. They hooped it up quite a bit.

We got to go to an outdoor theatre and see Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Coat on "Surprise Night", which is a night when we take the whole camp off sight and do some fun things just to give them a break. Here is the little man hamming it up with one of the teens.

Here is the amazing show!

A couple pf the girls studying

My big man with KR, he is so great with his sisters!



My middle man

The boys had a "car" wash for their bikes

All in all, it was a challenging but great two weeks. We faced some spiritual warfare but God walked us through it and reminded us that it just mean He was working through this camp and these teens. It will be nice to be home for a little while now.

June 20, 2009

Undeserved Blessings

We just got home last night after being gone for two weeks at a training camp that we do for teens. Some of you may remember last year at this same time we came home to a huge surprise. Our kitchen, dining room and hallway had all been textured and painted. Our house was also clean, lawn mowed, bedding washed and beds remade, and flowers planted.

Well, we got home last night and had our socks blessed off again! Since moving here six years ago, we have been reminded over and over again what amazing friends the Lord has blessed us with. We don't deserve them or their kindness and all they do for us is appreciated beyond what we are even able to explain. We came home to a house that had been scraped, primed and painted. Our deck had been primed and one coat of paint done, our lawn mowed, house cleaned, beds made with clean bedding, and flowers planted including two beautiful arrangements in pots on our deck! And it all looks awesome!!!!

This time around my friend and I had discussed what she could do while we were gone. She wanted to do another project. We talked about the house, but I ended up injuring my back and by the time it felt better I was swamped with getting curriculum wrote for camp and other prep. I was not able to get the house scraped, we hadn't settled for sure on a color, along with a few other things in the way of getting it done. I found out later, that didn't stop this friend or anyone else. During the second week of camp I was told out our house was being painted but had no idea about everything else.

The thing you need to know is that camp is physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually exhausting! We come home wiped out in all those areas. I needed some encouragement this particular day. We were meeting with our board and Todd told the board and me that our house was being painted. The whole board got to see me cry. So to my friends involved in any way, know that you were a part of making me cry in front of a lot of people! Thank you! Working with 40-60 teens for two weeks is truly a joy but as I have said, quite draining and words can not express what an encouragement and a blessing it is to have friends like we do.

So, to all of you involved in blessing us with the work on out house, thank you so very much! Also, thank you to all of you who pray for us and pray us through the work of this ministry. We truly could not do it without any of you! We pray the Lord's blessings on each of your lives.

June 2, 2009

Every Morning

This is what I get to wake up to every morning...could life get any better than that.