Thursday, May 27, 2010

Smells & Sounds of Spring

I went home to Springfield for an extra long weekend, and it was absolutely wonderful.  I've been extremely busy at work lately, and it was so great to totally get away for a few days and forget about everything.

The weather was incredible - it felt like the middle of the summer, which is unheard of for this time of the year.  I got in some delicious early morning walks with the dogs, and listened to the sweet sound of the friendly little birds, and could smell the fragrance of apple blossoms in the air.  The soft sounds and smells of Spring were being released from winter's icy grip.

I took a few shots with my new camera, but am still trying to figure everything out, so received less than stellar results - it doesn't help when you're trying to hold two schnauzers with one hand and take a
picture with the other!  (Special thanks to my sister Bem, who works her magic on my pictures in iphoto.)

My family had an early birthday celebration for me, which included lobster (yum!) as I will be in Bolivia for my birthday in June.  I have the best family in the world, and my mother is the coolest 85 year old you will ever meet.  We all enjoy each other's company so much, and I am thankful for every one of them.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

How To Build A Boat In Bolivia?

I have no idea, but I'm about to find out!!!  Yes, that's right, I will soon be off on an adventure to Guayaramerin, Bolivia to help build a boat that will be used by doctors to visit villages in the Amazon Basin that can only be reached by boat.

There will be a team of nine of us leaving in June for two weeks - every year our church sends out several teams to various countries of the world, and when they announced the trip to Bolivia last Fall, I was instantly intrigued because I have always wanted to visit South America, and I knew that Bolivia is a Spanish speaking country, which would be great for me to resurrect my extremely rusted Spanish skills that I learned while in Mexico.

I was not sure when I signed up exactly what area of Bolivia we were going to, but I knew that June is considered winter down there because their seasons are opposite to ours, so I knew that the temperatures would be cooler.  I don't do the greatest in hot temperatures.   And when they announced the trip they said that we would be renovating a houseboat, so I thought "How hard could that be?  I can sand things.  I can paint things."  I signed up and went to our first meeting and found out that Guayaramerin is in the jungle in the Amazon Basin, and that we would be BUILDING a boat, not just renovating it.  Needless to say, I've been a little freaked out since then, but God has spoken some amazing things to me about what to believe for during this trip, so I am going for it!

I went for my final round of shots yesterday, and now have the live Yellow Fever virus floating through my system...that's a weird feeling for sure!  And I just upgraded from my Nikon D40 to a D80 on the weekend, so I have to figure out how to use my new camera before I go!
(If anybody has some tips, please send them along!)

I'll keep you posted as the adventure continues....

Saturday, May 1, 2010


I just purchased a copy of James Goll's new book called "Adventures In The Prophetic" and this is what it says:
"What a wide vista of experience is on the other side of the safe and familiar path.  To have an adventure, you must break through an invisible membrane of the familiar into someplace that previously made you uncomfortable.  You pass through constraints constructed in your past and you carve a path for your future.
Adventure (noun) - an unusual and exciting, typically hazardous, experience or activity.  A daring and exciting activity calling for enthusiasm.
Adventure (verb) - to engage in hazardous and exciting activity, especially the exploratioin of unknown territory. 
My late wife, Michal Ann, often used to wear a black "No Fear" baseball cap when she ministered.  On the inside of the rim of the cap it read, "Don't let your fears stand in the way of your dreams."  Yes, that is it!  Push past your fears so you, too, can live an adventurous life."

I'm about to embark on an adventure of my own soon, and these were just the words I needed to hear today.  Stay tuned....

A Nice, Relaxing Saturday...Not!

So I wake up early this morning and I'm so glad that I don't have any plans or have to be anywhere, and I'm looking forward to a nice relaxing day with my puppies. We go for a long walk around the neighborhood and everything is so peaceful and quiet, until they notice a porcupine beside the trail...Gracie went CRAZY! She was barking so loud I'm sure she woke the whole neighborhood. That porcupine took off so fast I think he left his quills behind!

Then I get a message on my phone from one of the managers at the office saying that they are working on all of the route changes and he has some questions for me. Of course, I immediately wonder if there was something that I had forgotten to do, so in great trepidation I call him back only to find out they want me to come in to work. While I'm talking to him on the phone, Bailey is lying next to me on the bed and I am rubbing her belly. When I hang up the phone I turn and look at her and I think "What is that on her belly?" And it was a tick!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm racking my brain trying to remember everything I've read about removing ticks. I know they say you're not supposed to pull them out, but upon closer inspection I realize that it's just fastened on and not really burrowed in yet. (She must have picked it up this morning.) So I go get my tweezers and try to get her to lie down again (not easy) and when I pull the tick out, Bailey jumps and I drop the tick on the bed!! I'm frantically trying to find this stupid tick while Bailey is rolling around on the bed, and I'm praying that it doesn't reattach itself again! I finally managed to find the little critter and he quickly met his demise. Yuck!!!