Monday, July 30, 2007

Midwest Camporee 2007

God brings challenges to our lives at different times and at different places. They are for different reasons but I believe they are to help us grow in our maturity both spirtually and for our wisdom. From July 14-18 I was a cadre counselor for the 2007 Midwest Camporee. These boys pictured below were in my cadre and we lived together in the tents behind us for four night and five days.I can easily say it was more difficult than maybe I wanted it to be from a fatigue standpoint but it was easy because the boys were very well behaved and respected each other. Our nights were very humid and not very cool. Sleep was not of very high quality and the hot 90 degree days were tiring. It was a blast and I wouldn't trade it for anything. Cadeting was a part of my church life growing up and Lord willing Sarah and I will have a son or sons and I want them to be Cadets as well.

For activities we volunteered at the Neal Smith Wildlife refuge cleaning up tree branches as well as repelling and zip-lining from a 40 foot tower on Mon. The repelling and zip-line was fun. On Tues. we did archery and riflery as well as camp craft and made a dream catcher. Below are four of my boys doing riflery. Jake, in the white shirt, won the Tues. morn. session out of about 25 boys and came within five points of winning for the entire camporee out of about 100+ boys.As well we had a frisbee golf tournament and I was able to use my ultimate frisbee skills and show off for the boys. We tied for first place the first time the tournament was played. The steering committee decided to rerun the tournament the next night in hope of having a single winner but we again tied for first place only this time with a different team. The prize for winning was Blue Bunny Waffle Ice Cream cones.

Thought of the day: Those that stay in the middle of the road get run over.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Three Years Ago

July 24, 2004
Our wedding day was beautiful and filled with great memories. It was one of the best days of July for weather - sunny and cool. I think the high for that Staurday was only 78 degrees with no humidity. We were married in the afternoon at Redeemer URC in Orange City and had our reception at Landsmeer Golf Club. Here are a few of our favorite pictures.

What a great looking group of young people!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

As Promised...

This is mostly just for my sister Rachel who keeps bugging me about sending her pictures of my growing stomach. So here it is at 33 weeks. Only 7 more to go and then the real fun starts!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Home Alone

Dan has left me. For five days at least, then he'll be back. He is at the Midwest Cadet Campout as a counselor. So that leaves me at home by myself with little to do. I dropped Dan off at camp on Saturday morning and he will be there until Wednesday. There are boys there from all over Iowa and a few neighboring states, but they are actually camping about 5 miles from our house. Sunday they had a morning service out at the camp and the families where invited, so my in-laws and I went out there and had lunch with Dan and saw where he was camping. They had only been there for a day, but his boys had already set up a nice camp, built a table, a teeter-totter, and dug a pit for a swimming pool. It seemed as if they were having fun.
Back on the home front, I have been doing the chores - feeding the calves and checking the cows daily. Since Dan fixed the pasture fence, I haven't had to chase cows again. Last week I chased them back into their pasture at least 5 or 6 times. Not much fun especially when you're 7 months pregnant. Not much work has been happening in the basement since last week was mainly focused on keeping the cows in. Which also means that no progress has been made on the baby room either. Some days I dream that I will wake up and walk into the spare room and it will be fully stocked with all the right baby necessities, but I guess it's going to take a little more work than that. Let me know if you want to help!
Four more weeks until I head back to school and seven more weeks (approximately) until our new addition arrives. For those of you who would like to see a new picture of my bump, which is growing nicely, wait a couple more days - Dan has the camera at camp.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Life on the Prairie

And the storm rolls through. Sarah caught this picture out our front window looking west as a storm rolled through. This same storm caused two tornados about 30 miles away.And there are days on the prairie when it snows and the cattle bunch around the hay feeder to fend off the bitterness of winter. The bright light in the center of this picture below is not a meteorite and not the sun shining through the snowy sky, it is Sarah taking a picture from inside our house as I am returning to the barn from feeding hay. The dark spot upward and left of the tractor would be the calves around the hay bale.Soon though spring arrives and the new calves are born. They are cute only a short time though. Their curiousity to follow me around soon turns to fear and they run away instead.
And then summer arrives and the cattle go to pasture to spend the cool spring days and hot sultry afternoons under a shade tree. The wise mothers are hungry for corn and leave their calves behind for a snack. I often will check on the cows and bring corn to lure them to me so I can check them for sickness and count numbers to make sure they are all accounted for.