Saturday, March 14, 2009

final trip

Happy Spring!

This was to be my last entry a couple of days ago – but there were no wireless hookups when we camped, along with limited facilities (no water).

We left Houston on Sunday, March 8 with 77 degrees at 10:00 in the morning. Highs were to get up to the mid 80’s.

Our days in Galveston are now behind us, until next year. It was bittersweet leaving our new friends, but I am hopeful to be going back in May with our church group. The next two weeks in Galveston will be the busiest time as they will be expecting close to 1800 students to come down to help during the two weeks of spring break. Added onto that, Pastor Billy is trying to put together a rally for the volunteers at the Convention Center filled with worship leaders, skits, drama, music…so exciting! I would love to be there.

As we headed to our next visit in Caldwell, TX we encountered many bluebonnets and some Indian paintbrushes! The bluebonnets are such a lovely blue/purple flower with a white coned top and they were at their prime. I was so excited that I took many, many, MANY pictures! It is such a beautiful and friendly flower.

Bluebonnets galore!

Sunday we spent the evening in Rockwall, TX with Ken’s previous secretary, Jackie, and her family Steve and Sara. It is amazing how kids grow up so fast. We remembered when Sara was born and now she is graduating from high school. Even though we have seen her growing up it is just amazing how time flies. We had a very enjoyable visit and a wonderful dinner. The time passed so quickly and we had to bid adieu until next year.

We then visited with Audra & John. Audra is the daughter of a very long time friend of mine (Charlie) from King’s College. Audra and John have a ranch, appropriately called the A&J Ranch. They moved from the rat race of Houston to the country and have 57 acres, where the cattle and horses roam, along with the wild critters of rattlers, wild hogs, etc…the type you would find in the country/hills of Texas. They converted their garage into their house and are living amongst oil derricks on their property. They are really enjoying it.
If someone would have told me Audra would be doing this I would have told them they were crazy. Audra has always been a small town girl (from Forty-Fort, PA) living in the big city of Houston. She has adapted quite well. A pleasant surprise was Audra’s aunt Shirley & her friend, Fred who came for a visit.

In Crowder, OK, on our way to visit our niece, we saw a ‘cow rescue’. A helicopter was hovering over water, lifting a cow up! You don’t see that every day.

We headed out very early on Monday morning to Van Buren, AR to visit my niece, Aly, and her family.
Mommy Alyanna Daddy Mike
As many of you know, I was in the delivery room when my great nephew, Austin, was born. He is such a grown up little boy. And his brother, Keifer, is just a cuddle bear and then there is Airyanna. What a little princess. She is such a handful for her mom. But what a pretty little girl…and she loves her Great-Uncle Ken. Ken rocked her to sleep one evening …it was such a beautiful sight.

Julie, Keifer & Airyanna Airyanna giving Ken that devilish look

Austin on left
Keifer in center
Airyanna with pacifier

We left AR and it was in the low 30’s. BRRRRRR. The cold front was fast approaching. Branson, MO was our next stop and we had snow flurries with the prediction of sleet. We decided to stay an extra day to see a few shows and wait out the weather. Our first night we saw Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede. It was quite a sight to be that close to longhorn steers and horses.

Our next night we saw the Liverpool Legends…a group that looked and sounded like the Beatles in their early years. We were quite impressed and really enjoyed the show. Along with the show they had George Harrison’s sister who put the group together and showed video clips from the 60’s when the Beatles were up and coming. It is quite a tribute to see them. Especially when both Ken and I could not afford the $5 back in the 60’s to get a ticket. $5 doesn’t seem like much now, but back then, it was quite a lot.

We are now heading towards St. Louis, Indianapolis, IN and then home. This will probably be my last entry into this year’s blog.

See y’all very soon and we miss all the friends we left in the south!

Blessings to all,
Julie and Ken


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