Saturday, June 6, 2009

Project 365: Two weeks worth of photos and stories

Birthday, Memorial, Retirement and More!

Another birthday, celebrated twice--at Monday night dinner and again Tuesday, the very day with a different crowd.

My brother and nieces converged from three different states. We all met at Dad and Mom's.
The younger generation served up a fabulous meal of milanesas, puré de papas, ensalada, verduras y postre. ¡Muchísimas gracias!

Later that week we traveled to Wisconsin for a memorial service. We spent the night in Chicago with cousin Rosie enjoying her hospitality and sharing many family stories and insights.

When we returned to the US after years of missionary service in Europe, we settled in Omro, WI, closer to M's family. The second Sunday we visited a small A of G. Visiting missionaries from Argentina drew us in that day, the warmth of the people kept us attending there, especially the family that took us into their home and heart, the McMullins.

The church is now a wedding chapel and theatre, however their loving acts live on in our hearts.
When we felt called to go back into missions, they encouraged us and helped make it possible in many practical ways. One outstanding example was when our youngest was born, just before we left to join the OM ship MV Doulos, they took their building fund and covered the cost of the Caesarian operation.
Both McMullins, our dear friends, are in heaven now, only a year apart. Another chapter closed, yet their example and legacy lives on.
An interesting side story. Soon after we met the McMullins, we realized that we shared a niece.
The drama that unfolded while we were in Europe happened this way: Mike's younger sister, developmentally disabled had married and had a baby daughter but was not allowed to keep her. They fought to challenge the system, even appeared on TV, but not even family were in favor. It was a very difficult situation. We prayed that God would place her in a good family.
Randy McM's sister was the answer to our prayers.
When we walked into the funeral home, Brenda rushed to meet us and was very emotional as she hugged us. Randy was her favorite uncle.
The memorial was a wonderful celebration of his life, remembering also Marlene who passed on last year. Mike shared a few words about their impact on our lives and ministry. Afterwards three came up to share their stories with us.
Being in the home area, we were able to get together with Mike's siblings.

We spent the night at brother Terry's new place.
Sunday was a long travel day.
Back to work for me on Monday, my last week!
Then Monday night meal...
Welcome little Alex! The family had not been back since he was born two months ago.
A funny incident:
Big sister Arya had the dominoes out, I came by and excitedly asked if I could play. She had planned to play with her mom, so she explained in her 3-yr. old way that the game was too 'delicate' and that I could go do something else!

Well, it was a busy last week, finishing up at each school and with each student, then packing all the stuff in the one classroom at the middle school that was like my home base.

As I took this world map down, it occurred to me that you might be interested in seeing where we've lived. In case you can't read the key in the lower left corner: smiley faces represent a year or more; stars, weeks or a month.
Today began with a 34 mile tandem ride. Mike was to lead the slower group of riders, the Cruisers.

Finally, after a full two weeks, I've made it back and am excited to join the photo sharing circle once again. It's been so busy, I don't even know what week we're on, but I'm sure Sara and her followers will know.


sara said...

this was a great post! I loved reading the stories.

Why did you live so many places for just weeks or a month?!!!

Have a blessed Sunday!

LuAnn said...

I know where Omro is - I live in Fond du Lac.
Great week with the memories.
Blessings to you!!

Susan D said...

I've gotten behind in photo posting at times too....but glad I didn't quit. Thanks for catching us up on your photos and the great stories. Blessings, SusanD

Kim said...

Loved all the photos, getting to see family... it was fun to enlarge the photo of the map and see all the places you've been. Definitely a must share story for one of those upcoming "Memory Mondays"?

Your niece looks just like her mom! What an interesting story of God's provision in her life and yours.

Hope that now you're RETIRED you'll write more! (hint, hint)

TCKK said...

Wow! you've traveled a lot. Loved looking at the map!