Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Blue Bell, Memorial Day and No Internet

Just another day here in Guatemala, however we pause to say "thanks" to those who served and serve in the military for the US.  Thank you!!!

Now if I knew where I could buy some Blue Blue Ice Cream, then my holiday would be complete.

Stars And Stripes Forever

- John Philip Sousa
Hurrah for the flag of the free!
May it wave as our standard forever,
The gem of the land and the sea,
The banner of the right.

Let despots remember the day
When our fathers with mighty endeavor
Proclaimed as they marched to the fray
That by their might and by their right
It waves forever.

I was going to post this on Memorial Day,
 but our internet went out and we were without
 emails, blogs, google, Facebook 
for a whole 24 hours +.
Not COMPLAINING, as it was a nice break.  
I was able to work on some "non-computer" projects such as clearing off my desk and making some more stamped cards.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Losses, Good Grief!!

Losses, are a part of life.  
Normally, when I think of loss, I think of death.  
But there are different degrees of loss.  Yes, there is death.  But there is loss when someone moves away and we don't have that day to day contact.  There is the loss of memory, which I experience when I see my mom's Alzheimer's disease take over.

Recently, Glenn and I have experienced several types of Losses.  We lost a missionary family that relocated back into the USA.  There is the loss of seeing my mother's health and memory getting worse and worse over the course of time.  We experience various levels of loss when friends move in and out of our lives.  A few weeks ago there was the loss of a volunteer who had flown down to Guatemala to help out with our conference by taking care of 4, 5 and 6 year olds, only to find out that soon after he returned back to the US he suffered a heart attack and died suddenly.  Then there was the loss of Ellen's choir director's wife who died suddenly several months ago.

Tarwater Family

Last week, we piled into 2 large vans with their 10 pieces of checked luggage and 19 pieces of hand-carry items and various strollers and drove the Tarwater family of 10 to the Guatemala City airport to say our goodbyes and send them off to their next adventure.  This family had become close to us and our team here in Guatemala.  They're flexible and didn't mind Glenn and I "popping" in on them.  We would steal a couple of kids on occasion and take them with us to run errands.  We would sit around the table to tell jokes.  We loved the spontaneity of the family.  Now, we pray for their new missionary adventure at Rio Grande Bible Institute.  Watch out Tarwater family, we will come and visit you in South Texas.

(get it, Adios Tar - glass of water?)

My Mom
My mom was in the hospital last week with some minor challenges to her heart.  She is doing better now.  The doctors didn't find anything.  That is the good news.  But Mom doesn't even remember that she was in Presbyterian Hospital.  I guess that could be a good thing also.  But I feel a loss when I see mom's memory fading and fading.  She still remembers me.  Today that is.  Tomorrow?  I don't know.

Bobby Cantrell 
Bobby and his wife Debby, traveled with a team of volunteers from Lake Jackson, Texas just last month to help with childcare for the 4's, 5's, and 6 year old missionary children during our annual conference.  Bobby was a tremendous blessings to the kids and their families as he and his wife creatively cared for the children.  He got down on the floor and played with them.  He told stores, did crafts and sang with them.  Then suddenly, soon after returning home, the Lord took him to his Heavenly Home.  Our hearts are heavy.  This is a loss for his family and his friends.

Billie Sue Thompson
Ellen and I recently attended the Memorial Service for Billie Sue Thompson.  She was the 'heart-beat' for the WCC at Moody.  Her husband was the choir  director and hundreds of women appreciated her genuine and kind personality.  She was well loved by many.  Although saddened by her 'homegoing', Ellen and I were blessed to attend the memorial service and honor her. 
 Click here for my earlier blog.  
Yet another loss.

In Summary,
I'm thankful for Life
For Family.
For Friends.
For friends who move.
For Friends who have impacted my life and the lives of those I love.

I don't like the feeling of loss.  I don't like grieving.  I hate it.  That is the season that Glenn and I are walking through.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Memorial Service for Billie Sue WCC singing Eternal Life

Our sole purpose of this "last minute trip", was to attend the Memorial Service of Billie Sue Thompson, affectionately known as "Mrs. T".  She passed away 2 months ago.  Her husband, Mr. T, was the Choir Director for WCC (Women's Concert Choir) at Moody Bible Institute while Ellen was a student. Ellen sang in the WCC for four years.

The tear jerker was when the current WCC choir members and about 25 former choir members (Ellen included) from as far back as 20 years ago, sang their traditional benediction song, Eternal Life by St. Francis of Assisi.  
Tears flowed!
(sorry camera was shaking as I recorded - tears!)

Thank you Charles Thompson for sharing your wife with so many young ladies through out the years. 
 Thank you for allowing my daughter to sing and be a part of the Women's Concert Choir.  She was blessed beyond measure.  
Praying for you during these days of adjustments.

Friday, May 16, 2014

A Day spent at Moody

Over the weekend, I met up with Ellen and Emily from Nicaragua and we had a quick pre-Mother's Day visit prior to Billie Sue Thompson's Memorial Service.  We stayed with ClarLyn, but we never were able to visit with her, face to face.  We got in late the first night and then were in bed when they returned from their evening dinner. Thanks ClarLyn for a nice place to stay!  

We had a great One Day visit at Moody.
We had a tour of the new Moody Central, where the renovated 2nd floor Culbertson is changed to meet all the needs of the students. There are offices such as accounting, Practical Christian Ministry, etc.

It's been 39 years since I first stepped onto the plaza to begin my freshman year in Chicago back in 1975.  My heart was flooded with dear memories as I thought of the life-time friends that I made and the tough Bible classes that I took.

 Little Emily found the DL Moody Museum where her great grandparents were married in 1951 when it was Massey Chapel!
It was great that Ellen ran into one of her favorite professors, Mr. Clark.
Ellen treated me to deep dish pizza at Ginos!  I packaged it up, and brought some slices to Glenn several days later.  Thank you, Ellen for treating me to my favorite pizza.
Ellen connected with an old friend, Lisa.
In Summary, I enjoyed 
  • a beautiful 80 degree weather on Moody campus
  • looking up our missionary name in the back of Torrey Gray auditorium
  • checking in at the Alumni Office
  • getting a personal tour of the new Moody Central
  • Gino East Pizza - 'nough said
  • watching Emily play in the Moody plaza
  • drinking a cup of Ice Tea at Joe's (2nd floor ASC)
  • wandering through the Moody book store
  •  enjoying Ellen walk down memory lane

Ellen, thank you for the great pre-Mother's Day weekend in Chicago!

God bless the School that
DL Moody 

(tomorrow's post will be about the Memorial service for Billie Sue)

Monday, May 12, 2014

Potted plants

Eating lunch out on the patio last month, I smiled when I noticed how bless we are to enjoy the view.  The view of the city, the view of the volcanoes in the back ground and the view of these potted plants that Juana  takes care of each Saturday.
We are blessed.

Friday, May 09, 2014

Snack for the Day

All in a Day's work

Getting her little "food stand" set up for the day.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Isaiah 55:12

You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.
  Isaiah 55:12

Sunday, May 04, 2014

Baptism, Sunrise Walk, Dolphin Cruise, Puzzles, Museum and Letterboxing

While Celebrating #29's retirement (see previous post), we celebrated by watching #29's grand daughter get baptized here at Henderson State Park Beach in Destin, Florida.

Barbara and I got up at 5:15am to watch the sun rise.
Tuesday afternoon, we all took an evening Harbor Cruise to spot Dolphins.
We all participated in working several puzzles.
We played Taboo and Balderdash.
I won playing Balderdash.  I love that game.

Matt and Jeff went out on paddle boards.

Matt, took us on a tour of the AirForce Museum.  We saw lots of bombs and airplanes.
And we ended this day off by doing a letterbox.  Audry and Claire enjoyed following the simple directions and finding the letterbox.

Most of the week, there were terrible thunderstorms that blew through the Panhandle of Florida.  It rained like 24 hours straight.  It kinda reminded me of living in Bolivia.  The rain, however, did not interrupt our wonderful week with #29 and his family.  We loved talking, telling jokes and visiting with each other.

In summary, our time to celebrate #29's Retirement from American Airlines was fun.  We enjoyed early morning walks along the beach, delicious food, telling and listening to #29's stories of interesting situations, engine failures, etc. going on harbor cruises, playing with #29's grandkids, reading, cross stitching, spotting the International Space Station, writing thank you notes and basically enjoying time with family and friends of #29.  

Thanks #29 for your sweet friendship over the years, your visits with us on the mission field and your loyal and genuine love for the Lord.

We love you #29! 

Judy and Glenn

Saturday, May 03, 2014

Number 29

We have a dear friend,
 dear captain friend, 
dear captain friend with American Airlines,
 dear captain friend with AA who is retiring.

  He will NEED to retire come his birthday in September.  He has flown well over 20,000 miles hours in his military/civilian career. And that is after he stopped counting 9 years ago.

 I don't call him by either his first or last name.  He has a number in his seniority.  
He is #29.
  Yes, #29 at American Airlines. 
 Now that is seniority!

Several months ago, #29's wife called us and said she was planning a surprise Retirement Party that was going to last a week long, in Destin, Florida.  Emphasis on the word... Surprise!
We feel honored that we were invited to this family event.  I took some thank you cards to write, needle and thread for my cross stitch project, swimsuit and a good book to read.

Tomorrow's post will be details of our week-long time to honor #29.