Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A blur

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The past week has gone quick. A quick rundown (by Jerry):
  • Wednesday (16): Left Portland Area. Visited Breanna's great aunt in Lebanon. Stayed with my great aunt in Medford. Attended Othello in Ashland (Bre's wish)
  • Thursday (17): Spoke at a Luncheon in a Chinese buffet. Spoke at Alliance Bible Chapel in Ashland, Oregon for a potluck. Visited my grandma's grave, and left at 10pm for San Francisco area.
  • Friday (18): 4 hours of sleep at a college friends house. Had breakfast and held him up from going to work :) Lunch 5 miles away with a friend from Papua New Guinea. Drove to Los Angeles. Dessert with another LeTourneau friend in SoCal (an ice cream parlor called PinkBerry). Spent the night with one of my cousins.
  • Saturday (19): Breakfast with my three cousins and their families and my uncle. Drove to Phoenix, AZ.
  • Sunday (20): Met with missions committee at Grace Bible Church in Sun City. Drove to El Paso. Spent the night with a LeTourneau Friend.
  • Monday (21): Drove to Dallas. Stayed with my brother in Dallas.
  • Today (22): Drove to Kansas City
  • Tomorrow (23): Drive back home in Minnesota (and to Mom, Dad, and the kids!!) 
So, we are kind of tired, and that may explain why the posting has slowed down!
We will be very happy to be home just in time to pack up!!
Here are some pics:
Breanna holding her brand new first-cousin-once-removed: Wyatt
(yes we looked up the correct term for how they are related)

Luncheon in Medford

Speaking in Ashland, Oregon (Mom's hometown)
Flowers for Grandma
Waiting for coffee in Ashland for the long drive ahead (it was opening night for Dark Knight, so there were a lot of people in line. Took forever to get a cup :)

Watching the AIM video with family

Dad's Camry has been a champ for these past 6000 miles. However, we have noticed the floor is getting soaked. I am investigating the drain hose for the evaporator. It may be getting pinched and not draining correctly. I used my birthday present (Swiss army knife) and performed an aerodynamic modification to the line to induce a low pressure at the bottom of the drain line in case air was being rammed up the drain line while driving at highway speeds and thereby blocking the drain.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Tacoma to Portland

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Welcome back to reminiscing with Breanna (written by Jerry). This leg took us to Centralia, where Breanna spent her senior year in high school. We visited a friend, then went on to Morton, a small town in the Washington mountains surrounded by trees. It is where Breanna was born just a few years ago. :)
"Oli the logger" from a picture taken when Breanna was growing up
"Oli the Logger" revisited
We spoke at First Church of God in Morton for Sunday School and during the service. The shirt was a gift from my great uncle Harold on July 7 (see previous post). It came in handy, since it always helps to look nice when in front of a lot of people.
On the way out of town we thought we saw Mt. Adams erupt. Breanna said it looked "like a volcano poof." Then someone flagged us down. "Did you see it! Mt. Adams just blew"
We found out today it was just a forest fire, started by lightning LAST week.

Friday, July 11, 2008

July 7-10

Imagine the most ambitious, consuming, life changing goal in your life. Something tangible, something you can touch. Something you want to guard because you know it sounds half crazy.
Then you sit down with friends and family and put it out on the table - answer any questions, put your heart into it, and ask them to be a part. It is a mix of joy to be sharing this with people you love, but there is also apprehension on how it will be received.
That's kind of what we are doing. Sometimes the response is shock, sometimes it is joy and excitement. Usually they want to think it over.
After we pour out our heart, however, we know this goal of reaching Africa is in God's hands.
And so we pack up our suitcase and move on. Never quite sure of through which means God will choose to provide for His work.
We are certain of one thing. The only complete solution to what is afflicting Africa is grace. There is only one way to break the chain of revenge, violence, and abuse. A belief that compels us on and lives in our hearts. A belief that only God's Son can change the world, one heart at a time ... no matter how hardened or sour. What greater cause could we share?

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Tuesday, July 08, 2008


Breanna filming on location in her old hometown, Sunnyside. We filmed the old paper route, and ticked off a local resident who wanted to know why we were driving around with a video camera. The price of memories...

"Home"...maybe not so hard to picture or imagine for many, but for those of us who have grown up in multiple locations, home is sometime just "where the suitcase is". But I was glad to be back in Sunnyside, my home from 1985-1990, where I had a paper route, had my first boyfriend and was baptized. The Sunnyside Church of God, where Mom and Dad pastored, was the church that sent a team on a missions trip to Costa Rica in 1990, that led to my family moving to Costa Rica as missionaries....probably the earliest step in MY journey to the mission field in Africa!!! (because it planted the love of missions and other cultures in my heart). 
I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with my BFF, Sarah and her family, and other friends who my heart swelled to see and learn how well and happy they are.
Sunday morning, Jerry and I spoke at the church and enjoyed lunch out with a group from the church. It was a joy to be surrounded by these familiar faces from long ago that all had a hand in the development of my spiritual life!

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We took a breather Sunday afternoon to catch a movie.We left Sunnyside this morning and high tailed it to an urgent care clinic in the "Tri-Cities" area. I started feeling rotten when we got after church and lunch on Sunday (at least it was after!!) was an infection I've experienced before, and knew I needed medication before the pain got worse. 
Praise God, though a little long waiting in the examining room, I got my medicine and am already feeling better!
 We drove north to visit with some of Jerry's family in Moses Lake. They surprised us with a birthday cake and even homemade ice cream to celebrate Jerry's 31st birthday a day early! Thanks, Aunt Grace & Uncle Harold!!
Tonight we're in Spokane with a friend of Jerry's from Dallas days. They are enjoying catching up, reminiscing and talking shop (He's a missionary pilot too!). I enjoyed playing with their darling nearly two-year old, that made me miss me nearly three-year old all the more!! Love you, Olivia, Grace & Izzy! Miss you!

P.S. (from Jerry) The catching up with friends and family is always wonderful. However, the true nature of our trip remains very critical, even though it does not lend itself to photographs, it is constantly ongoing. We are excited today to learn that with a recently added member to our team, our monthly support level is now 54% !! Climbing slowly but steadily (the airspeed indicator will be updated at our next breathing spot!). Thanks for coming on this journey with us!

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Walla Walla to Sunnyside

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Much shorter drive today. I spent the time working on sending out our electronic newsletter, while Breanna drove.
When we first arrived in town she said she didn't recognize anything. This was the last place she lived before moving to Costa Rica. I was beginning to wonder if she was the native Sunnysidian I imagined her to be. Then we passed Skipper's and everything was familiar.
We plan on going with Sarah, Breanna's childhood friend, to see fireworks tonight. Breanna keeps looking for a newspaper to read about the events tonight, but I think she just wants to look at our picture that Sarah told her about.
We will call people and hope to meet with them tomorrow.
Along our trip so far, everyone has been very interested in our future involvement in Africa. It is always exciting to share our vision and see people respond.
This Sunday I will be speaking at Sunnyside Church of God.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Ogden to Walla Walla

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We actually slept in this morning. I had calculated the wrong departure time to be able to meet a friend of ours in Nampa for Lunch. So, while the extra sleep was wonderful after the long drive through the night, Breanna had to make several phone calls and sheepishly explain we were off of our planned ETA's!
We arrived in Nampa, ID at 2:30 and had a great time with our friend Tony from LeTourneau. We also met his fiancee, Janat.
Here would be a picture of them, except we forgot to pack a mini-usb cable to dump our pictures from the camera onto the computer!
We are now in Walla Walla, WA. That's a lot of w's and a's. We are staying with some friends overnight.
News from the home front indicates the little people are less restless and things are feeling more like normal.
On the phone, Grace whimpered, with a bluesy tone, "Dad, I miss you sooo much ..." Then two minutes later she asked, "Can I go watch the rest of my movie now."

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Wall, SD to Ogden, UT

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Jerry drove 98% of the way here from Minnesota. I'm useless when driving at night. So I only did the last 2 1/2 hours of Wyoming to Ogden.

Jerry teased me when I was talking to my mom on the cell phone and the call was dropped a couple times. I told mom it was the, "ups and downs" in the road. 
Jerry reminded me they're called "hills". Funny guy.

The mountains here are beautiful and our priceline hotel find awesome...beautiful rooms, the most comfortable bed ever! Perfect for catching up on all that lost sleep before  our drive to Boise, Idaho in the morning.

Please pray fervently for our kids and Jerry's mom, Phyllis. We talked to them and it seems their day went well, although the girls had a tiff, and I think that combined with her first day of all the responsibilities overwhelmed mom. We have full confidence in her, though. Things will get better for them and they'll find their groove, but please keep them in your thoughts and prayers!!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

And We're Off!

...Like a herd of charging turtles. We had planned to leave at noon yesterday, but our last minute "to dos" coupled with the more pressing need of finding a phone for Mom to use while we are gone (since we have only a cell phone and no home phone), changed our minds for us about our departure. We ended up leaving 1am-ish to two crying children (the other was asleep, fortunately). They kept asking, "Why do you have to go," and the more soul crushing, "I don't want you to leave." 
Jerry asks me to pray as we drive off, saying dryly, "We're gonna need it!"

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