Archive for the ‘Friends’ Category

Full Circle

Friday, November 23rd, 2012

We started this year of travel in April after all the cancer stuff was over; it was like a New Year’s celebration to head to Phoenix on our way to Colorado. One of the first photos I included in my blog was a saguaro cactus (they look like people to me), and here I am back in Arizona finishing up 2012’s travels.

It’s been totally awesome to think back at our time with Focus on Family, a European riverboat cruise, England friends and memories, family reunion on the Jersey shore. Disneyworld and Daytona, a retirement celebration, forever friends, DC Marathon, Hurricane Sandy, voting absentee on the road, a noreaster, humidity, wind, rain, snow, icicle-cold, and desert hot!

While at the family reunion at the shore, we fondly remembered cousin Sandy, who lost her cancer battle.I am so glad we had gotten closer over the last couple years. It seems like she might have had her hand in protecting her family’s beach house when her namesake hurricane came through and didn’t do any harm.

And while visiting Barnoldswick, England, we joined friends still mourning the death of my special friend Gail Usher. Some of her ashes are hidden in a crevice on the south side of the Grand Canyon because this was a special spot for her! We end our travels by way of this majestic natural wonder to be near and reflect on the gift of her friendship.

This journey, all of 2012, has shown us the glory of God in the sights, sounds, and tastes we have experienced, but most of all the people. It’s always good to come home, but if your heart is with God then it ALL feels like home.


Spit All The Way To Canada

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

West Point to Albany and then go north, way north and you’ll come to the prettiest of states: Vermont!

We hid out in Barton, Vermont with friends and former choir members, Steve and Nancy Tanner at their family compound on Lake Willowby. SNOW and temperatures in the teens!! They are a fraction of an inch from the border and are in a quiet, isolated, friendly, cozy part of the country.

Water from their own rushing stream (with a beautiful waterfall) and heat from the cast iron stove, the Tanners are becoming full time residents here after being snowbirds to San Marcos each year.

We spent a wonderful evening at their church with musical friends who came together to play instruments and sing and just enjoy being together and creating music. No audience to speak of, just a handful who got word and bundled up and came. Everyone brought a casserole or dessert and we took a dinner break, then back to the music. They even put up with me on the piano!

Silver and Gold

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

“Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold.”

That was going back to my early Girl Scout days and is certainly true on this East Coast 2012 trip.

Patty and Doug Halvorsen, our very first neighbors as newly weds, taught me bridge, killed my spiders, and were with me when the nurse called to say I was pregnant with Robbie. They held my hand while Steve was in Vietnam for 7 months, and all those other times he was at sea, ate my cooking, played ultimate Frisbee, and built me a patio cover.  Good times.

Nelda and Ed Cockman were church friends in Huntington Beach and had boys that could play with Robbie and Andy. We were in a small group that would do ANYthing for each other and we still all stay in touch. Forever friends that bounced around a lot but find that Pinehurst, North Carolina fits just right!

Elaine and Cliff Faille who are Pfizer folk, and became friends in retirement as we travel to medical conventions. Crazy Elaine inspires me to come out of my shell, and Cliff and Steve have ‘history” together. They are the ultimate grandparents, and she’s a “Mimi” too! And I couldn’t keep her still enough to get a photo this time!

Headed to DC now to be with cousins who are more like good friends! Precious times with everyone.

Hotel Davenport

Sunday, July 10th, 2011

With hugs that didn’t want to let go, we headed to Spokane with Rob and Susie Bierman to sightsee and have dinner at the jewel of the city-the Hotel Davenport.

We did a walking tour of the ol’ girl because Susie has roots in the area and her grandmother had her Debutant Ball there iin the early 1900’s. We stayed at the hotel rather than backtrack our way to Seattle.  

We also checked out Whitworth cause Robbie got accepted there for college but chose Westmont, and Gonzaga just because.

Don’t Fence Me In

Sunday, July 10th, 2011

Mosied out to Western Pleasure Dude Ranch with Bill and Benita to see Brad, Susan, Heather and Josh Yunek. Their life is on the ranch where Brad handles the horses, trail rides, etc, and the campfire sings!  Brad has always been so musically gifted and his songs are being noticed in Nashville.

What a great time we had sitting around the campfire and listening to him play his guitar and his daughter play her fiddle!


Sunday, July 10th, 2011

What a beautiful town whose focus is life around lakes and rivers. Couer d’Alene! And because there is so much water, owning a place lakeside is not for the very rich. But it  is rich in friends; Bill and Benita Yunek, Dan and Marsha Shupe, Brad and Susan Yunek and Fam, Rob and Susie Bierman, and a surprise from Jon and Janet Woerner.

We enjoyed Bill and Benitas wonderful hospitality and they, the Woerners, and us were part of a great group of friends from Huntington Beach at the Methodist church 73-’81. Us friends would still do anything for each other and are close to this day tho’ we are scattered.

Fabulous fireworks, fine food, inspiring views and FOREVER friends!

Over The Border

Friday, May 13th, 2011

Our buses were not allowed into Jericho. We had to transfer to Palestinian buses and drivers to see what we saw.  Can you imagine, we crossed a border with hugs and entered a  third world country of desert, filth, fear and hatred.  And it was in the middle of Israel???

Saw some digs for the Walls of Jericho, but it was just a pile of rocks (stupid) since the walls fell down and the city was destroyed!

Then we visited Zaccheus’ house (turned into a church, of course) and then around the corner to see the sycamore tree ( I’m a little skeptical on this). But EAGER to get back on our own buses and get away!


Friday, May 13th, 2011

Well up until now, my infant baptism had done me just fine!  But being baptized in the Jordan River was too special to pass up.  

About 2/3 of the group were immersed in cool running water where the Sea of Galilee empties into the Jordan. Special outfits, singing, 3 pastors, supportive friends, tears, wet hugs, photos, little fish, loud Alleluias…and then the commemorative gift shop!

Israel 2011

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

We have arrived and are being overwhelmed with the incredible sights.  Unfortunately we haven’t had internet for me to be current.

Tiberias, Caesarea, Mt. Carmel, Nazareth, Samaria…

We (100 folks) invade (in 3 buses) and overwhelm an area, have some praise songs, some history, a little message from Pastor Ray Bentley and then back on the bus!

Mi Amica, Carol

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

What’s better than being in Italy?  Being in Italy with a fun friend who speaks fluent Italian!!! Now all the folk in Montalcino know more of my heart cauz she can translate for me!  I can tell them how special they are to me and what a pleasure it is to be in their country again.

Carol visits Italy twice a year (6-8 weeks each time). We met at an Italian class in SD’s Little Italy, but she lives in RB and plays a mean game of golf . She leaves hubby at home cauz he’s been there, done that.  But Italy gives her life such dimension (and it’s her heritage), that it’s like coming home to her.  She has spent time with us in Tuscany and now we are on a 5 hour train to enjoy Pavia and Milano with her.  God is so good to bring us together!