Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Over the Past Month...

Here ya go...  I'm making up for my month of silence.  Some of y'all have asked me some questions, and I will be getting to those soon.  I have some outside-of-the-box education blog posts that are on their way, so for those of you who are curious about hackschooling, unschooling, Charlotte Mason, etc...that is coming soon.  And for those of you who have been asking me for the past few years what my secret is to making our house such a cozy home (to which I didn't have an exact answer), I've taken some notes this time around as we have had to start from scratch in a new house.  All of those things are in the wings, so drop in again soon.  

In the meantime, here's another quick photo nutshell of the past month.

Summer brought on the filming of new movies in our home.  This particular movie is a historical fictional account of President Lincoln's son Tad as he travels to the Confederate White House to spy.  Yes, this was their idea.  I try to just provide what they need and then stay out of the way.  They yell out, "QUIET ON THE SET!!!"  And the poor cats are not allowed to meow, and the noisy overalls flipping in the dryer have to be silenced until the film crew is finished with their scene.  

I love these creative little people!

Family friends from Kansas visited us.  The lady in the center of the photo has been my mom's prayer partner since I was in junior high.  Every Tuesday and Friday for all these years, they have prayed together faithfully.  They used to meet in person, but after both moved to other places, they continue to pray together over the phone.  I have no doubt that their prayers were (and are) a huge factor in my life.  Seeing their prayer life and the miracles that often came out of it was one of my first lessons in the power of prayer and the reality of God.

And in answer to your questions about the ministry we moved here to work with, YES, we have visited their facilities.  We were given a tour, and we will meet with them again soon to discuss what our exact role will be in their work.  I will have to blog about this separately some day, because it's impossible to put it in a simple nutshell.

One section of one of their warehouses...

One section of their clothing room...

There is another warehouse that is lined with hundreds of these boxes ready to be filled with food.

Here are many of the boxes that were being filled for that week's delivery.

Volunteers are busy at work all over the place in order to make this ministry run.  There is such a sweet spirit there among the workers.  It's hard to describe, but it's definitely felt.  When people's lives are spent focussing on loving and serving others, there is simply a very sweet atmosphere that you cannot get anywhere else.  Corporate American holds no candle whatsoever to is an entirely different world.

Here's the site of their future facilities...10 acres.  Very exciting time for them as they break ground and move toward a bigger, more efficient site where more people can be served.

Here's a rather typical scene in our front yard...  These deer eat everything, so we fenced in a portion of our back yard that they cannot touch.  But the front yard is free for grazing (we don't have to mow nearly as often with these helpers!).

The little Asian princess had her 8th birthday.  Those of you with kiddos with DS can relate to the sense of accomplishment as she skillfully formed her lips into an "O" and blew each candle out.  :)

Seriously, have you ever seen anyone so incredibly thrilled with a piece of cake and some ice cream??  One thing that this gal has is sincere appreciation for the little things in life.  Perhaps it was her years in an orphanage that produced it.  She has taught me volumes about being thankful for the little gifts and the special people in my life.

Most of her gifts this year were therapy toys.  Shhhh...she doesn't know they are for therapy...she thinks they are just plain fun.  This is one of the texture balls we bought for her.  Yay for the one-handed throw too!  Doesn't every princess play ball in her frilliest dress??

I ventured on a road trip with one of our children.  We went to help my mom when she wasn't feeling well.  On the way to Dallas, we stopped in Austin at a bookstore and in Waco at my alma mater, Baylor University.  We had lots of fun looking at the black bears that live on campus.

He was in awe at the huge bookstore and called it "Baylor Galore."

Ahhhh...SO good to set eyes on this place that was such an instrumental part of my life!  I do love this spot on the planet and the memories that flood me when I'm on campus.

While we were in Dallas, we were invited to watch my nephew's karate class.  He's the best little karate guy (and, no, I'm not a biased Auntie!).

We spent 4th of July in Boerne.  After eating at Longhorn with approximately 6 billion other people, we sat in their parking lot and watched the fireworks that were held just down the street at the park.  Grace and I stayed inside the truck and watched through the windows, which was a nice option for a child with sensory issues.  So, for the first time, she was able to experience a fireworks show...very fun for her!  The rest of the crew set up camping chairs and blankets in the back of the truck.  We had a good time, but we keenly missed our small-town 4th of July in Dahlonega, with its parade, fireworks and of course the always-memorable cookout with our good friends.  This is a time of transition, and the 4th of July was a day that brought both happiness and sadness this year.

Okay, just had to take a picture of my hands wrapped around this crazy huge burrito I had at Chipotle!

We made a trip to Toys R Us to spend a gift card, and the boys were most excited about this Lego fire fighter.

And we finally made it to one of San Antonio's landmark restaurants.  Awesome queso and tortillas, by the way.

My oldest daughter and I headed out for a girl day.  We played for several hours...having lunch, getting our hair cut and styled, and browsing through nearly every aisle of Hobby Lobby.  This was a wonderful treat for us, as we rarely pamper ourselves like that.  After we got our hair cut, she wanted to take a selfie.  For those of you who knew me in Georgia, you'll find my curls are nowhere to be found in this photo.  With lower humidity in Texas, straightening curls is not as difficult, so yay for me...I have some options again.  :)

We're thinking of our friends in Georgia and missing y'all.  This has been a rough time of transition, so for those who have been sweetly faithful to keep reaching out in email and texts, I do thank you.  That is speaking my love language!