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We were able to see fireworks twice this year.  At least three people around us were shooting them off on the fourth.  Then we enjoyed a much better display of them at Black Squirrel Golf Course.  This was the first year that I remember going without meeting any family there.

A few friends joined us in our customary spot and we invited some other friends to join us.  The kids had fun with bubbles, catching fireflies and playing with many children who they met at the park before the firework show. Allan and I enjoyed the chance to talk with friends and had a relaxing evening watching the children have fun.

The Walk


The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.

Sang by Bilbo as he leaves home in Fellowship of the Ring, Book I, Chapter 1 by J.R.R. Tolkien.

Archery Class

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Archery camp went very well this year.  The children learned how to shoot a bow and arrow properly and all would love to take more classes and set up an archery range in the back yard.  It was fun watching them improve over the week.

Adrian struggled at first.  He was the youngest in class, and the bows were not right for him.  His instructor brought in the bows and arrows he had made when his children where younger for Adrian to use.  Adrian improved immensely with them.  He also loved that he had special wooden arrows that were shorter and no one else could use them.

The last day of camp was just for fun and games. The children got to shoot at targets, pop balloons, shoot arrows into the air trying to “storm a castle” and other fun activities.  The class was over way to quickly.

Their instructor was excellent.  On the last two days he brought a very small bow and arrow set.  He had noticed Megan watching the kids and realized that she wanted to try too.  So, after asking me, he asked Megan if she wanted to try.  He helped her very little, and she was still able to hit the target most of the time.

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Color Run

Allan has been wanting to start running again and Audrey and Mark were interested in running with him. Many mornings, he gets them up before work and they go running.  I get up too, but I don’t run much.

They have been talking about racing, but have not been sure how to start. We learned about a 5K fund raiser that we decided to try.  We knew that it would have similarities to a race, but not have the pressure of having to run fast. We registered Mark and Audrey and discovered a free entry that Allan used to run with Megan.

The race went really well.  Andrea hung around Grandpa and Grandma trying to get pictures and Adrian and I ran around trying to stay ahead of the runners.  We asked Mark to stay with Audrey, even though he can easily run faster, and they both got so far ahead that I only saw them once during the whole race.  I was able to stay ahead of Allan and Megan with shortcuts.

After running, the racers celebrated by throwing colored cornstarch at each other.

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Momma Time


SwingThe older kids are taking an archery camp this week.  While they have class, Megan and I get to enjoy Momma time.  We have taken walks in the rain, walked through the woods looking for animals, and played in the flowers and on the play ground.  Megan gets to say what we do and she choses different things every day.  She always wants to head to the kids early though so we can watch them for awhile.

It has been fun playing just with Megan and listening to her chatter about everything!



BlackberriesAccording to Megan, the “strawberries” are ripe!  This year is promising to be a great year for blackberries, not enough to pick and freeze, but plenty for everyone to pick a handful of berries for themselves.  They are a wonderful after breakfast treat!

Rough Day

Today has been a rough day.  We got a call early this morning saying that the baby alpaca had taken a turn for the worse.  He was not eating anymore and having seizures.  The neighbors took Luke to the vets and did not bring him home.

Everyone took it very hard.  Our morning started out with a lot of tears and miserable children.

But my God is so good.  He knew what would happen today.  He knew what the kids needed and how they would react.

I stood back as my children learned a hard lesson and watched them grow today. And I am very proud of them all.Kids leaningThank you so much for praying!


MomandbabyTwo days ago, the neighbor’s alpaca had a cria.  Luke is an adorable little guy! He was looking great and doing all he was supposed to do.

Last night though, they discovered that he is not eating.  He went to the vets and had a check up.  The neighbors are now feeding Luke a goat’s milk and yogurt meal until he learns to nurse properly.

I believe that God enjoys listening and helping his children when they need help.  I don’t think that he thinks anything is too silly to ask about.  Would you please pray with us about the new cria?

He needs to learn to eat and he needs to start growing.  The kids already love him.  I know that they are learning a lot watching him be sick.  They will learn more as they learn to bottle feed him and take care of him to help the neighbors.  Please pray for them through this lesson!  Pray too for the neighbors as they take care of the little guy.



Greer Spring and Blue Spring

Greer Spring

Blue SpringsSince Sickie was feeling slightly better, we decided to go exploring a little before heading home from Missouri.

We hiked down into Greer Spring.  The woods we walked through were beautiful.  Then we drove a little way and tried hiking to a few different springs along the same trail.  We stopped at Blue Spring and tried to walk further, but decided that the ticks won this time and we returned to the car. Even though we checked and double checked everyone before leaving, we still discovered a few on our way home.

The trip home was uneventful.  We stopped at a few places to stretch and the kids slept or read most of the trip home. We finished reading all but two chapters of Tom Saywer.

Once we got home, we started the fun job of cleaning everything!  We put our waterlogged camera in a bowl of rice.  Within a week, it had dried out enough to start working properly again!