Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Price Has Changed

Yesterday I put flights on hold for the trip we are planning for July. Today I went to purchase the flights and the message came up: "We're sorry, the price has changed. The new price is...." But surprise! The new price was $30 cheaper than the price yesterday. Yay!

So we are definitely going to California and Oregon in July. We spent 2-3 hours on Monday trying to map out a day by day schedule, and now I'm starting the process of contacting all the people we want to see during this time.

We've scheduled in one day of vacation at Crater Lake in Oregon. The accommodations sound pretty basic, but then, we're not afraid to walk down the hall to the bathroom.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day

I was telling Rachel last night that they used to call it Decoration Day. I remember my grandma using that term.

We aren't really doing anything special, just working on projects. Gary will probably keep working on the downed trees. Rachel came over and made pancakes for breakfast. We did stay out a bit late last night having a game night over at the Martins.

I'm working on making arrangements for our July trip, but our internet connection has been cranky off and on for two weeks which makes it difficult. It has also been raining off and on for two weeks, so there may or may not be a correspondence. But it is frustrating when we're so dependent on it for work and everything else! We have lots of flights to book and even more emails to write to see if people will be home on the days we want to see them.

Monday, May 21, 2007


Last evening I fixed a fancy dinner of grilled salmon (which I found cheaper than hamburger), mushroom rice pilaf, veg (as the British call it) and cheesecake. This was because they don't feed dorm visitors over the weekend and our friend from 30 years ago needed a place for breakfast, church, lunch, and dinner. David, a Brit who worked with the United Bible Societies, was a translation consultant who worked with us in the Solomons. The other family here are colleagues whom David also did translation checking with, in Russia.

Tonight we are having more visitors, our friends Bob and Pat who work in Venezuela. We have to pick them up at the airport tonight, then take them back to the airport in the morning so they can return home to Michigan.

In other news, Gary's uncle Tom passed away recently, so his parents are making plans to go to the funeral in California, trying to decide whether to drive or fly.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Not Much News

Not too much going on here. Gary is in North Carolina and will return on Saturday night. I'm trying to get a newsletter out while he is away. Rachel continues her job hunt. She's gotten no positive responses from the public schools but she's reapplying to a couple Christian schools. It seems getting a real job isn't that easy to do... She's also trying to scare up some summer babysitting jobs.

A cold front went through so we are

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Bodark, Bois d'arc, Osage Orange (male)

Click on the photo to see more photos.
bodark tree
I've made a little photo album to see all the fun we've had with our broken tree.

Turns out some people sell this stuff! The female of this tree has huge inedible fruit; we have the male of the tree, and every spring our driveway is carpeted with this:

Happy Mother's Day

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

When Gary Was 10 Years Old

...he planted a number of saguaro cactus seeds in a large pot. Later he repotted them into individual pots. When we were dating he gave one to me as a gift. It was about 2-3 inches tall then, if I remember correctly. When we left for overseas, we donated it to my Aunt Alice, and she has kept it alive all this time. Whenever we go to Michigan, we stop in to visit the cactus, now over 40 years old.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Photos of our Trip to Michigan

To Michigan for Alan's Graduation

Click on the photo above to open the entire photo album.

I've got my photos more or less organized and labeled. If you want any specific ones for printing, I should probably send you the full-sized ones (these are smaller for viewing online).

Sunday, May 06, 2007

We're Home

We've arrived home safely and I've downloaded all those photos people kept complaining that I was taking. I got some good ones! I'll get them organized into a photo album in the next day or two and post the link.

Congratulations to Alan for sticking with it and graduating!

The broken tree limb has been ripped off the tree by the neighbors and dragged to an empty lot; Gary already spent two hours cutting off the leafy ends with a hand saw and put it out for the brush collector who comes tomorrow. Next chore--either buy a new chainsaw, get the old one fixed, or hire someone to cut up the giant limb. It also appears that the roots of the tree directly by the front door have broken the front sidewalk/porch.

Oh, and get back to work tomorrow.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Nice Weather in Michigan, but

storms in Dallas. Late Wednesday night Rachel called us at my mom's house in Michigan to say there had been a bad storm in Dallas and a large limb of the front tree had fallen down. Fortunately, our car was in the parking lot at DFW airport and Rachel was away from the house in her car at a babysitting job. So, Rachel is talking to the neighbors to see what, if anything, can be done before we get back.
Meanwhile, Gary and I have been going around visiting relatives and neighbors and old church friends. Tomorrow morning we will drive to Grand Rapids for Alan's graduation and then back to Crystal for my cousin's wedding where we hope to see a few more relatives.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007


I didn't get the focus right on this photo, but you get the idea. I recently repotted a plant that hangs from the ceiling and the ants seem to like it. Or, maybe the ants were in the soil to start with. At least they weren't fire ants.

Tomorrow we are headed north. I don't know if I'll have any chance to blog or not, but I'll be taking my camera along.