Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Spc. Taylor A. Bradley

As Memorial Day approaches, I want to take time to thank our son-in-law, Taylor, for his service in the United States Army. Taylor, you have given up so much to give us our freedoms. So many people take their freedoms for granted, but I see first hand the things you give up to serve your country for us. We have done our best to take care of your loved ones as you take care of us. We have had the privilege of having Kristen and the kids here for the last eight months. Thinking about them leaving and going back to Tennessee is bitter sweet. It means we will not see them every day but it also means that you will be home from Iraq soon. We will dearly miss them but I know that Kristen will send pictures and the web cam is such a great tool that keeps us close. We are so proud of you and we thank the Lord for all He is doing in your life. You are not the same man that married our daughter, you are a better man. You have become a man longing to do God's will and to raise his family for the Lord. That is so much greater a service to us than even your job in serving your country. We are proud of you and we love you and miss you. May God keep you safe during the rest of your time in Iraq and may He bring you home safely.

How We Recall
by ©2004 Roger J. Robicheau
(Sp 5, US Army)

How we recall that day we swore
To serve our country to the core
That clothing issued brought a view
Of raw recruits, this showed so true
Remembered hair was cut away
This look for quite awhile would stay
Our trek before too long did show
New GI’s marching, row by row
And then one day emerged a form
Each proud trained troop in uniform
We followed orders as we should
To do our best, in pride we would
Some served in peace, some went to war
Brave heroes passed through Heaven’s door
We cherished friends who served with us
Great buddies all, how we’d discuss
So many thoughts will never wane
For what we shared, let closeness reign
Our bond was tight, the best to see
For when we served, this had to be
The purpose was to keep you free
God Bless the brave, deservedly

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Jonathan & Erin defying gravity!

Summer is on it's way. Last week, we had temperatures of up to 98 degrees. It is only May but it sure feels like the middle of summer. Due to the extremely warm weather, Jim opened the pool. Even though the temperature of the water was only in the high 60s and low 70s, the kids went swimming anyway. They sure look like the are having a lot of fun.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Happy Birthday Erin!
Erin turned eight years old this year. She really made out big because her birthday fell on Mother's Day. We didn't want her to lose out so she had a family birthday a week before her birthday and a friend birthday party the day before.

Erin had four friends come over for her birthday and they used my glass beads to make necklaces and bracelets. Emma even made a ring. It was fun watching the girls make different designs with the beads. They each got to bring home a one of kind piece made just by them.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

A Tribute to My Mom
Mother's Day is fast approaching and with it come thoughts of my mother. My mother is one of my best friends. Some of you may not know it but I talk to my mom almost every day. She lives in New Hampshire and I am not able to see her very often although the closeness we share is something that many miles can not take away.
When I think of my mother, "Godly woman" is what comes to mind. My mother is one that sets an example of what a Godly woman is. Her relationship with the Lord is evident and she lives out that relationship on a daily basis. She treats others with love and kindness.
The Bible talks about a wife of noble character. Proverbs 31:10-31 says, "A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for the tasks. She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers. She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple. Her husband is respected at the city, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land. She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes. She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: 'Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.' Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate."
Do you have to do all of these things that are described here to be considered a wife of noble character? I don't think so. Superwoman does not really exist. My mother didn't sew a lot, she didn't buy fields, and she didn't have servants. She did however shop for our clothes, always had food for us, was there when we needed her and most of all, she feared the LORD and still does to this day. I always remember my mother being up before everyone else. During that time she had her quiet time with the Lord because that was where she received her strength.
My mother was never into the latest clothing or fashion although she took care in how she looked. 1 Peter 3:3-4 says, "Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight."
I believe my mom is a great example of what a wife and mother should be. I thank the Lord for such a Godly example. My prayer is to be that kind of example to my own kids. Thank you Mom! Happy Mother's Day!

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Pictures of Our Beach House

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
3rd Bedroom/Den
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Front of house
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Master bedroom
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Master bathroom
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Main bathroom
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
2nd bedroom

Sunday, May 07, 2006

It's fun being Grammy and Papa!
I am now understanding what people mean
by, "If I'd known it was so much fun being a
grandparent, I would have done it first."
Believe it or not, this is the first time
Uncle Jonathan has held Brooklyn.

Dylan at the beach. He really enjoyed his time

playing in the sand and water.

Brooklyn, and Dylan with

Uncle Jonathan, Aunt Erin

Saturday, May 06, 2006

We recently bought a beach house. It is located in Lincoln City, Oregon. It has been so much fun to take the kids to the beach and spend some quality time as a family without all the demands of home. And yet, we are home so there is a home quality to it also. The kids have had fun playing in the sand, going to the aquarium, and just playing at the new house.

The kids were so excited when we went to Depot Bay and the geysers were really shooting up. If you go at high tide and the waves come in right, the geysers go up about 50 feet!

We are renting the beach house out on a nightly and weekly basis so if you would like to take a vacation and play at the beach, let us know. The house is only 3/10 of a mile from beach access.

I would like to tell you about our passion which is missions. We are the Oregon representatives to Esperanza Viva, which means Living Hope. EV is a youth home in Puebla, Mexico and they take in street kids. Most of these kids have been abandoned, abused, and neglected. Some of the parents are in jail for up to 70 or 80 years. These kids come into the home afraid and untrusting. As they are there they meet Jesus and after time, their lives are transformed to smiling, playful kids who love our Lord Jesus.
There are several ways that we work with the home in Puebla. One is that we sponsor three of the children. When a child is sponsored, it helps in their care financially but also relationally. The kids write letters to us and we write letters and e-mails to them. We are able to buy birthday gifts for them and Christmas gifts. It is so wonderful to get a picture of them with their birthday gifts and to see the smiles on their faces. The other way we work with them is that we go to Puebla to visit them. In 2004 we went down as a family and then in 2005 we took a team of eleven people down with us. We are currently in preparation for leading another team down to Puebla this fall.
Last year we helped by putting together a benefit dinner to raise money for the land fund. Currently the children and staff are housed in about sixteen different locations around Puebla. They are hoping to buy ten acres of land but they need to raise $1,000,000 to do so. We will be helping with another fundraiser in the future.
One of the fun things is that Jim has been learning Spanish for about three years now and he is getting quite fluent. He says he has a long way to go, but he can have a conversation with a native speaker as long as they speak slowly. The kids and I have been learning some Spanish also and this next year, Spanish will be one of our core subjects in school. I look forward to teaching them because then it will help me remember what I have learned and I will be able to use it more.
If you want more information about the home or have questions for us, please feel free to comment.