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Thursday, July 31, 2008

DAY THREE, FOUR, FIVE, ............

After a whirlwind of several days straight in a row, I finally have time (yeah, right!!) to catch my breath and post of our good news:
WE'RE MOVING!!!!!
Well, yes, that IS good news (I know some of you know how I feel about the mountains, church, etc..... and you are wondering, "How can THAT be good news?"). Barry is getting back to his first love, band. He has accepted the job of band director at East Bladen High School in Elizabethtown, NC.
On day three, Barry, myself, and Benjamin traveled to Bladen County for an interview. The interview took over 2 hours!!!! Ben and I wandered around the high school about 900 times while we were waiting.
Finally, we resorted to the "blanket" and some chips to keep ourselves entertained (and some of us QUIET!)






The school's mascot is the eagle and they have some really neat student-paintings scattered around the school. Also, they have a beautiful facility to work in. The next picture is in the commons, near the cafeteria. East Bladen is a 1A school with lots of pride in the band. Barry was wined and dined after accepting the position. I think he met just about everybody in the whole town in only one day. They were all so eager to meet the "new band director". He was just beaming the whole time. It is definitely time to see him happy doing something he LOVES!!!






After the interview, we took a little side trip to White Lake. One of my sisters used to take me there when I was little and it was so sweet for me to see it again. As it turns out, we are looking at several houses right on the lake. That makes the move so much better!!!! I remember this water tower from when I was a little girl and it looks just the same!!!






Benjamin certainly enjoyed a little down time, splashing around in the water. White Lake is a 1200 acre lake of crystal clear water and beautiful white sand. The deepest part is only a little over 11 feet, so it is perfect for little guys like Benjamin. The only ebbing you get is from the boats and jetskis running around in the middle, so it's really like a huge bathtub. The water is fresh and comes from an underground mineral spring.









This picture shows just how much EVERYONE loves the lake, no matter what the age! I was shooting in black and white on this day, so you can't see that she is carrying a bright pink float!










DAY FOUR:
Ben and I traveled to Elon University to pick up KT and get a glimpse of all she took part in during her grueling week of camp (which she really liked!)




We got to see her play in the championship game, in which her team lost by only one shot!!!



KT also made the all-star team. So, she and the other five received a really cool t-shirt. They played against the coaches, but again, they lost by only 1 point.
Pretty decent form, I suppose. : o )

Isn't she just the sweetest little thing?
(OK, so I know she isn't little, but she is still mine so let me bask in my motherly glory!).



Later on, we picked up Jackie and Joseph from music camp. What a great week they had! I don't think that Ms. Charlotte, aka "Minister of Fun", let them have any down time at all and I could tell by the way they were acting that the weekend was going to be pretty unprofitable as they would be catching up on some much needed rest.



Benjamin was so excited to see everybody, that he just couldn't keep his hands off of them!!!




And finally, after breaking the news to our kids, our church, and our families, we all headed back to Bladen County for some house hunting on Monday and Tuesday. We wanted the kids to have a part in picking our house and we also wanted them to see what a cool place we will be moving to.

This is the edge of the "yard" for one of the houses we are considering. All I could do was just stand there and gape. I'm sure I was quite the site and made a wonderful first impression!
Then, each day we took the kids back to the lake for some play time. They all really liked it, especially Barry who found $10 in the bottom of the lake. Then, Jackie followed suit and found $1. Joseph didn't want to be left out and came up with a quarter. KT, try as she might, only found a pair of flip flops -and they didn't even fit!!- and Ben was thrilled with his brick chip that was located on the bottom of the lake.

This is Barry, Jackie and Joseph WAY out in the middle of the lake.











KT was having a splash-fest with Benjamin. He loved every minute!


Joseph wasn't all together sure that the move was such a good idea. But, I think that the trip helped him and he seems to be coming around.





And finally, meet the new East Bladen High School band director. Isn't he handsome?




















Wednesday, July 23, 2008

DAY TWO

Well, what did we do today? First off, I was right! The very first thing I heard this morning (before getting out of bed!!) was, "MOMMY!!!!! It not dark anymore! Me play in my sand!" And then immediately following, a huge, award-winning smile.






I did coax him into a little breakfast first, though.

Then, we had a little sand time. Now.... all of you native beach people out there, don't be making fun of our sand box. In the mountains, this is all we know how to do!





More fun: BUBBLES!!!

We then retired from all the fun for a little house work: BEDMAKING 101. Yeah, right. You can see from the documentation below that Ben did a little more that just pull the sheets and comforter up. We had a game or two of "Find the Monkey" before the bed was presentable.I know some of you are wondering what Barry was doing all this time. Well, the same thing he's been doing for the last several weeks:On the phone, job-hunting! I think we both have permanent indentations in our right ears from where the phone has found a home.

Then, Daddy was off to work and after Ben woke from his nap, we took a walk to the mailbox (for those of you who don't know, our mailbox is exactly 1/2 mile from our house, so to walk to it is 1 mile). On the way, we discovered it is finally:

BLACKBERRY SEASON!!!


Ben and Jackie are our resident blackberry pickers, but since Jackie is away at camp, Ben enlisted a little help from his buddy, Mia. Now, you have to realize that Mia is truly our blackberry-pickin'-pooch. She LOVES them! We don't get many in the bowl (I don't think I'd want them if she picked them, anyway), but she is good for companionship and running away any blacksnakes taking a snack on our berries.


After a little swinging, sliding, and climbing, I was ready to have some supper and turn in for the evening.




Tomorrow should prove to be our most exciting day yet, and it is our last one as the older stinkers will be home on Friday. BOY!!! I sure do miss them----I'm having to do too much work!



Tuesday, July 22, 2008

DAY ONE



Well, Day One of Ben and Mommy week has come and gone, and I don't have too much to show for it. The better part of the morning was spent working on Barry's resume and Statement of Faith for a new job. Then, Ben had a nap. Afterwards, he and I ran some errands and then --FINALLY!-- we did a few fun things. The first? Well, check out the photo below.....
















Yep.... that's right. We ate at Long John's. Yes, I know it's "meat". Yes, I know it's greasy. Yes, I know it's full of artery-clogger. And yes, I also know that it tasted divine. Benjamin didn't quite think it was so wonderful as he only ate 3 fries and said, "I full!". That's my little health nut.




Then, we ventured over to Lowes and picked up some play sand and brought it home. Boy, was he excited! He played in it until it was too dark to see anything, so I am guessing that it will be the first thing that he mentions in the morning.








Below is a photo I wanted to post for fun. The sweet thing's name is Adeline and she is 3 months old. Her mom had me to photograph her on July 4. I would tell you when and how we worked this shot out, but that would be giving away all my secrets, wouldn't it? Besides, you wouldn't believe me anyway.







Adeline

So, As for tomorrow, check back in and see what all the hoopla was about for Ben and myself on Day Two.......



Monday, July 21, 2008

BLESSED ARE.....

.....THOSE WHO THIRST AND HUNGER FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS, FOR THEY WILL BE FILLED. (Matt. 5:6)
Meet my friend Kim and her daughter, Ashley. Kim is a few years younger than myself and Ashley is exactly 6 days younger than Katie. They, and their family, are invaluable friends to us. Recently, their house has seen this hunger and thirsting for righteousness, and I'm here to tell you: They have been filled!!!! Their church in King, NC baptized 18 yesterday, and the two of them decided that they wanted to get in on the action and publicly acknowledge what God is doing in their lives. The photos below are so sweet and you can see His presence all over their faces.






This is Ashley. Her daddy is on the right.






This is Kim. Her husband and head of their home is on the right, holding their 4th child and Ben's best friend, Olivia. What a joy Randy experienced in helping to baptize his wife and daughter!

VBS AT CORNERSTONE CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP IN SPARTA, NC

And, as for us, our church also baptized 18 yesterday. Many were from VBS this past week, but several were from recent salvations. It is so refreshing to see God moving and people responding to His call. Below are a few photos from our Vacation Bible School (courtesy of KT!).


This is my brother-in-law and pastor, Brian. And yes, he DOES look like that quite a lot!!!




Here is Jackie, enjoying some good praise and worship.





Every night the girls and boys had a contest to see who could be the loudest on "Hallelujah! Praise Ye the Lord". KT got a good shot of the girls who won in a final championship on the last night!


And, saving the best for last, meet Allie. She is a friend of Jackie's and she gave her heart to the Lord on the last night. I don't think that there could ever be anything more beautiful.

The older three kids are all off at camps this week. Jackie and Joe are in Roanoke, VA at music camp and having the times of their lives (I know, because I called--yes, I was a little concerned about Joe going off for the first time without his Mommy--and he was like, "Mama, do you need something, because I've got to go. My friends are waiting on me....). Katie is in Elon at NBC Basketball Camp (http://www.nbccamps.com/). Ben and I dropped her off today. I can't wait to hear about that one as one of the coaches informed us parents today that they would be in the gym at 7:15 a.m. --before breakfast!!--each morning for ball handling! So, it's just me and Ben this week as Barry will be as work most of the rest of the week. I hope to post each day so that the older ones can get a glimpse of what went on at the house while they were gone.