06.13.14 Vacation Bible School – Trinity Baptist Church style!!!

child like faithOur home church, Trinity Baptist Church had Vacation Bible School this week and I was able to help  with the 1st and 2nd grade group for two days.  When we left to live on the road, most of the kids now in the 1st and 2nd grade class were still in Pre-K or Kindergarten so the last I remember of them was keeping them in the Nursery on Sunday morning or night.  Wow have they grown!!!

This year’s theme was SonTreasure Island.   Today was their closing program where parents and grandparents were invited.   They performed four songs with hand motions that they learned this week and did great!  These little Wonders of God really made me happy to be home this week!

Shannon Tribble and Jeri Bankston lead VBS this week and did an outstanding job.  I’ve known these young ladies since they were very young Christian women and they have grown to be such strong mature Christian women.  Not old mature like me, just mature and still young!

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I took some pictures throughout the week and want to share them with you now.  Our youth did a great job teaching the kids all the songs and hand motions and you’ll see them in the pictures too.

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Last rehearsal for the 1st and 2nd graders before singing for their parents.
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Singing together during the opening Worship time
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The music leaders Mallory, Jonah Kyle, Cari Beth and Elizabeth leading the kids in singing
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All of the children singing for their parents
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Our class in craft time on Friday making shell bracelets

Helping with Vacation Bible School, working and having Madisyn spend the night Tuesday night rounds out the highlights of our week.  When Madisyn spent the night we watched ET again! and made a pallet on the floor like Chip and our oldest son did when they were little.  Chip and Madisyn will be going to church with us Sunday for Father’s Day.  I’m cooking afterwards and then we’re going to see a movie which is Chip’s Father’s Day gift to his dad Roy and I get to go too!!!

I’ve completed the project I was working on for RVillage.com and am now moving on to a different one.  This one is back in the advertising department where I started out, just doing different work now.  I really love this job that gives me some income while still having lots of free time to be retired in!

We’re hoping to take a road trip to Walters Peach Farm in Ellisville, Mississippi to get peaches next week or the following week.  We’ve eaten them before and they are by far the most delicious peaches we’ve ever had.

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Ya’ll have a great weekend! and ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!!

 

 

 

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06.08.14 John 3:16

 

john-3-16What a morning!  Our first morning Worship Service back at our home church Trinity Baptist Church since we returned last Saturday.

I slept until around 11 am last Sunday and didn’t go to church.  Do you know what kind of week I had?  A very difficult one.  Every thing that happened felt like it was pulling me deep into a depression that I constantly struggle fighting.

Many blogs are written by those dealing with depression but I usually choose to focus on what God’s done to lift me out of that, than the times I am not close to him and start sinking.  I don’t think I opened my Bible once last week when added to not being “preached to” as I put it just resulted in a very difficult week.  I prayed all the time but it was a lot of asking for things (even if for others) much more than giving Him Thanks for all He’s done for me and others.

People who make comments like “I can worship God just as good in the duck blinds, or in the fishing boat, or on the golf course as I can in church”, and any number of other comments I could quote here are just full of crud.  There is no way you can even attempt to live a Christian life, drawing closer to God like we should be, by skipping or missing going to church.

For years I used the excuse that I worked all day, cleaned and ran errands on Saturdays and needed Sunday morning to sleep late or I wouldn’t make it through the week.  I let that excuse fool myself and tried to convince others that I didn’t need to be in church.  I tell you that so you’ll know I have a strong basis to know what life outside of church fellowship is like compared to life being in church fellowship.

Being in church doesn’t do anything for you. You’re thinking, wait woman I thought you just said it does.  Occupying a pew at church on Sunday mornings, evenings, etc. is what doesn’t do anything for you.  What makes the difference is us having our mind and spirit in a place where you are truly Worshiping God through the songs, scriptures and sermons while we are gathered with others trying to grow in Christ, just like we are.  Christians who fellowship together make friends who have the same beliefs, morals and desire for God like they do. God wants and deserves ALL our Worship and Praise and our lives cannot be what they should be without a weekly, but preferably daily, time spent doing this.

Wow, that wasn’t what I started out writing when I opened my laptop just now but it’s what I needed to say I guess. When we open ourselves to the Lord He can use us to do anything He wants done.  If you want to know more about what it means to believe in Jesus Christ and accept him as your Lord and Savior, just ask.  I can only tell you what He’s done in my life and guide you to a pastor who can explain more, but we can take the first step together!

Spot Traylor and Teddy Forrest blessed the congregation this morning with a duet singing about God’s Love.  The mixture of their voices does something to my heart that I can’t describe. We even sang “Jesus Love Me” as a congregation.

We’re having Vacation Bible School this week at Trinity and I’m going to be helping Monday and Friday with the 1st and 2nd grade class.  I will be guiding (perhaps herding!)  them from location to location and hope to get to know some of these little children that I’ve missed out on teaching in Sunday School.   If you have the opportunity to bring your children to a Vacation Bible School this summer, do it!  Many times it is the only exposure to Christianity some children experience which makes VBS one of the greatest things available for reaching them.

Roy and I moved from the driveway at our house to the yard on the other side of the house.  We are parked under one of our huge oak trees with our big mat laid down on the ground, our two rockers in place and our table ready for more crawfish!  We’re hooked up to a new 50 amp box Roy installed on the house and the water and sewer lines are hooked up so we’re quite happy with this arrangement.

We purchased a replacement front door for our sticks and bricks house this week and it’s sitting in the garage  waiting to be installed.  Just couldn’t pass up the one with Fleur-de-Lis on the glass!  We need to pressure wash the house and garage before the door is installed.  All that will happen when the house is empty, but it’s nice to get something ready now for doing that work then. I’ll be pulling weeds late in the evenings which will take quite a while with all the gardens I have to pull weeds from!

Our first day home we were treated to a BBQ dinner at Chip’s house where he gave me my Mother’s Day present.  A beautiful Origami Owl necklace with pendant.  Inside the pendant was several little charms.  A stone for 2014-06-02_10-50-40_487my birthday, a stone for our Anniversary, one that said Blog (guess why??!!), a cross because I’m a Christian, a precious little camper for our RV life and a heart that says Grandma.  They float freely in the round pendant.  It is so special and I’ve never seen anything like it before.  He picked the perfect gift personalized just for me!!  What mom wouldn’t love such a personalized gift!!

The highlights for this past week were one night when Madisyn spent the night, one evening when Chip came to visit, a wonderful visit we had with my sister and brother in law at their house and a surprise visit at our RV from Marcus McMillian.  We haven’t seen Marcus since his wedding last year and had a great time royandmadisynteapartycatching up with him on his life at work, with his wife and their baby coming soon!  Madisyn ate boiled crawfish with us outside, had a tea party with us inside where she poured us a “spot” of tea, watched ET (which she’s never seen before and she absolutely loved) and then had a sleep over with us.  God definitely put all the goodness in our family into that little girl, she is such a joy to spend time with.   When Madisyn leaves we are exhausted but it’s a wonderful exhaustion that only a grandparent gets to experience.  We’ve gotten a little rest and work in between all that so I consider it a very successful week now that we’re spiritually refreshed from being in God’s house this morning!

Just saw the counter on the RVillage page go to 8000 members!  Keep up the great growth guys!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ year!

 

 

07.26.13 Brrrrrrrrrrrr, Bingo and VBS!

It is Friday, July 26th and the temperature here in Kabetogama, Minnesota at Noon is 54 degrees and windy.  When my laptop starts up it still shows me the current temperature in Hammond, Louisiana which was 90 degrees about an hour ago.  While it’s way too cold up here right now, I am glad we’re not in the 90 degree weather for sure.  I dressed in shorts and a short sleeve t shirt this morning and when I walked outside I had to turn around, come back in and put on a coat and long thick pants.  How crazy is this!!!  I feel like I’ve said that sentence a dozen times since coming up here and experiencing living in the North!  Even though we are not traveling as much as we will be in the future we are really experiencing a different way of life up here.   I planned to go wild blueberry picking this afternoon but I’m not too sure about doing that now.

We ventured out into the big night life of Kabetogama last evening and went to the local Bingo game at the community center.  There were over 100 people there including children down to the age of about 6.  Seems like it’s the family night out thing to do.  Roy and I took our co-worker Beth with us on this adventure.  It started at 8 and was over around 9:45.  It cost us $10 for four cards and we didn’t win one thing.  I’m not a gambler and now I know I’m not if it’s this easy to lose your money.  I’ve never been to a public bingo game and it was quite interesting to see all the locals in one place.  They are all mostly from Norwegian or Scandinavian ancestry which means a lot of real blonde boys, girls, men and women in one place.   A couple from the Methodist church we’re attending ran the Bingo so I don’t know if this is something the church sponsors or if this couple just does this.  Well that’s enough about our exciting Thursday night out.

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The community hall!
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Roy with some of the early comers to the game!
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Beth, our co-worker and Rosalyn

The last day of Vacation Bible School at Kabetogama United Methodist Church was also today.  The children painted with colored markers these adorable wooden puppets that one of the church members, Mr. Eddie, made and primed for the children. He made a board that you slip under your leg and rest the puppet on.  A stick comes out the back of the puppet and all of its legs, arms and feet are movable so when you hold the stick up and the puppet stands on the board you can make it dance by bouncing the board.  The children all decorated theirs like farmers in keeping with the Hay Day theme and were able to take this craft home to keep, play with and enjoy.  Marcia and Allyssa made three adorable examples to give the children some ideas, and I was truly amazed at how well the children all did with their creations.  The group pictures is of all the children, some of the workers surrounding Mr. Eddie who made the puppets.

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Some of the children painting their puppets
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Group picture showing everyone with their wooden puppet. That’s Mr. Eddie in the center of all of us.
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The three examples. Aren’t they precious! Marcia and Allyssa did a fantastic job with these!

One of their outdoor activities was the famous “minnow races” that I thought weren’t real, but yet I saw them today.  They keep a bunch of minnows in a small ice chest with water.   The minnow racing box is a rectangular wooden box with 5 channels where the fish swim.  They put in a metal wall to hold back the minnows until the race starts.  Each child scoops up a minnow and puts it into one of the five channels.  Once that is done they lift the metal wall and off go the minnows.  Some need a little help with a flick of the water above them and the kids all seemed to be quite experienced at this.  Maybe I’ve lived a sheltered life and they do these in the South as well as up here but I’ve never heard of them before, yet it was a lot of fun to watch and the children really loved it.

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Minnow Race – with a little help!

They also played one of the games our youth use to play at “What It Is” at LSU each summer and our family played at family gatherings throughout the years.    We take 2 sheets or blankets and four people take one of each corner of each blanket.  You put a filled water balloon in one of the sheets and those four people lift the sheet up so that the balloon flies over to the other people’s sheet and they try to catch it.  It’s a lot of fun to see how far you can go back and forth with it before the balloon hits someone or the ground and bursts.   My family will recognize this one as they’ve all become pretty good at it over the years!  I miss you family folks!  We’ll be back around Thanksgiving so hopefully it won’t be too cold and we can fling some balloons together then!!   Cold wouldn’t stop these Northerners though!

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I really enjoyed working with the children and the other VBS volunteers sharing the love of Jesus with these little ones.  No matter how small a group, if one little child comes to know the Lord or if the seed is planted it is so worth it.

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Snack time – they put green colored icing on top of a graham cracker and positioned some animal crackers around the green grass to create a farm yard!
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Mattea and Mr. Joe
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Pastor Roger and Allyssa Carlos, Marcia Ryan’s granddaughter who helped her with the crafts! Beautiful girl, inside and out!

Roy just barbequed some thick pork chops and sliced potatoes for our dinner (delicious!!!) and we are getting rested up this cold, windy Friday afternoon preparing for our grueling Saturday workday.  Only 5 more of those Saturdays left and then we start in September closing down the resort for the winter.  I’ve always liked countdowns and this one especially!  Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!

07.24.13 Kabetogama United Methodist Church Vacation Bible School – Wednesday

Three days this week Kabetogama United Methodist Church held its Vacation Bible School.  Two of those days I was blessed to be able to help with the crafts part of their Hay Day – Growing in Friendship with Jesus VBS.

They transformed their fellowship hall into a farm themed event with spaces for our crafts, for snacks and for moosic (music) and more.  Outside was used for Hog Wild time (fun outdoors games) which included minnow races.  I thought minnow races were something that didn’t really exist but I actually saw them and the kids have so much fun with them.  Pictures will come in the next blog from that one!

The church foyer was transformed into a dark specially decorated place for the daily Bible story.  Marnie, Pastor Roger’s wife, taught the lesson.  She has a very calming, soft demeanor and the children really listened and participated well.

Mattea who lead the music (which is always a fun hit at VBS) works at Sandy Point resort here and was a music major at Bemidji State University here in Minnesota.  She also plays the piano on Sundays for Worship Service.

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Marcia (crafts) and Mattea (music)

Pastor Roger was Sam Sunflower in one of the skits he did with Mattea.  He recently had some stints put in and an angioplasty done and is just now recovering.  I was surprised to see him there so soon after all that happened but he was and he made the children so happy with his Sam Sunflower skit.

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Pastor Roger
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Pastor Roger as Sam Sunflower and Mattea

Marcia , her granddaughter Allyssa and I did the crafts.  The Monday and Tuesday craft was creating a present for the children to give someone else to let that person know that Jesus loves them.  They took 6″ clay pots and stenciled around the rim “Jesus Always Loves You” with flowers for the Os.  Then they painted grass and flower stems in green on the lower portion and attached different colored buttons as the flowers on top of the painted flower stems.  They filled up a baggie with dirt and put it inside the pot and finished it off with a yellow paper flower that has wildflower seeds imbedded in it.  When the flower is put in the dirt and watered it will grow wildflowers.  The children chose who they will give theirs to and some may go to the local nursing home.

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The kids getting ready to put the button flowers on their flower pots
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Inside of the plantable flower with this week’s scripture Romans 5:11

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The plantable flower with wildflower seeds imbedded
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Close up of the decorated pot with the yellow flower (with imbedded seeds in the yellow paper) before I planted the seeds.

I made one myself and it’s now sitting on our picnic table outside!  I’ll share with ya’ll Thursday’s VBS events as soon as I get the pictures together.  I forgot my camera at home today so others were kind enough to take pictures and will send them to me.  Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

06.23.13 Let us go into the house of the Lord

Psalm 122:1 I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord.

Today we were blessed to be able to attend church after a few weeks of missing.  We have not been able to find a Southern Baptist church up here.  However, there is a small  kabetogamaunitedmethodistchurchMethodist church near the resort that we attended a while back and today we were able to return to worship there.  Our Saturday work has literally drained everything in me to where I couldn’t get out of bed on Sunday mornings. After asking for Sunday morning offs to be able to attend church, it’s been frustrating to be physically unable to do so.  I now understand Psalm 122:1 very well after being separated from hearing the Word of God taught.  Pastor Roger is preaching a series of sermons on the Lord’s Prayer.  This morning’s sermon was about the part that says “Thy Kingdom come” and I realized as he preached how much I missed being taught from the Word of God.  I’ve listened to Bro. Randy’s (our pastor at Trinity in Hammond) sermons on line but there is something about being in the house of the Lord with other like minded believers that makes it more meaningful. Yesterday I decided that as tired and drained as my body may be, my soul and spirit needed to be in the house of the Lord today no matter what.  Roy wholeheartedly agreed. Some people may not understand my deep need for Christian fellowship and teaching but it’s the way God made me and I’m very thankful for that.

The bumper sticker on my mama’s car got a lot of comments over the years.  I just found it in graphic form and thought it so perfect for today’s post I have to include it.

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Our hometown Ponchatoula Strawberry Festival – I just thought about most all Louisiana festivals are about food!

During the announcement time, Marnie, Pastor Roger’s wife talked about their three day Vacation Bible School in late July.  Since I’ve loved working with children at church I got very interested.  They have a need for someone to work with crafts so I talked to her and Marcia, who is working with crafts, about their plans. One of the men, Eddie, is making wooden string puppets for the kids to decorate.  They sound really cool and I am looking forward to seeing them, being involved in their VBS and seeing where God leads us with our involvement in this church. We’ve heard about minnow races up here and they’re actually having one at VBS, can’t wait to see that!

Next weekend is a local event called the Lady Slipper Festival. The church is sponsoring a Gospel Concert nearby here late

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Lady Slippers are a wildflower in this area

Sunday afternoon and a blueberry pancake breakfast Sunday morning as part of this event.  We’re looking forward to seeing a Minnesota festival.  Pretty sure it will be totally different from a Ponchatoula Strawberry Festival!

We’re heading up to the Lodge in a bit to enjoy the free Ice Cream Sundaes they offer the guests every Sunday evening.  Roy grilled chicken and fresh vegetables for lunch and we’ve watched two chick flicks which gave us plenty of rest time. Starting the day in the house of the Lord, eating well, resting, enjoying the movies and now ice cream sundaes will top off a perfect Sunday.

We start our first all day work day tomorrow so it will be an early bedtime tonight!

Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!