Category Archives: montreat

gcpc happenings

RESURRECTION

where we sit in the back, eat pizza, role their eyes at me and all the photos, go to the arcade, get a lecture on shot glasses, and make andy feel uncomfortable.

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MISSION TRIP 2015 – OKLAHOMA

this year I went on the mission trip.  I don’t know why but I went.  we went to oklahoma and spent a day in texas.  we missed our first flight.  we got a quick flight to Houston where I thought we were going to be stuck until we died.  they split our group and sent me and 4 kids to new orleans (to connect to dallas) and as we were getting off the plane we heard the last call for that flight.  we made it and got to dallas.  I asked the lady at the counter where andy and the rest of the kids were and she said what do you mean they are in Houston.  I told her no.  because andy told me they were on a plane about to take off (I just didn’t know where to and when they would get to dallas with us).  she looked and said what is your name…I told her…and she said oh it looks like you are still in Houston too!  so apparently there was a black hole in Houston (I believe it) but she finally found that andy and one youth was on a plane to Tulsa (I knew he was with the rest).  we were reunited and the rest of the trip was very go with the flow.

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while my group was stuck in dallas we were sure we would never see our friends again.  we knew we would be stuck forever.  we made plans to get jobs while we waited when we ran out of money.  we planned our meals.  we found with outlets a corner and hunkered down.

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waiting to load the rental van.  it was so hot.

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we did yard work and some minor building repairs at a church (associated with the Choctaw tribe).  there were some down times, so we did a lot of random photos (trying to do best impressions of band cover photos, awkward family photo, or just weird photos)

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we saw some wild life a toad that went to sleep.  and a snake.  not a rattle snake but let’s be honest any snake is pretty much a cobra.

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in some of the down time I got to walk around the church campus and down the road to get pictures.

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we explored the town a little bit.

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the people there were wonderful to be around and fed us amazing food.  at the end of our time there they gave us handmade gifts.  on the last day while two of the youth were helping finish up a project the rest of them played volley ball.  you could tell how happy that made the church members.  they talked a lot about the hope that our youth gave them.DSCN7256 DSCN7264 DSCN7292

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putting up with group photo shoot

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our cabins were nice.

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on our free day we went to a lake (that was still flooded from a few weeks before).  we went to the casino for lunch.  we were told that there was a lot to do at the casino for kids (but that part wasn’t open yet).  we went to a durant.  there wasn’t much to do there.  but we made the most of it.

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we went to texas to the childrens home.  we helped with some yard work.  pulling weeds and trimming trees and bushes.  it was miserably hot and humid.  but we were able to work slow and take a lot of breaks.

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we celebrated with a night on the town in denton, tx.  it was a wonderful little town.  we had a blast.  we shopped.  had dinner.  had ice cream.  listened to music.  and at 9:19 it was still 94 degrees outside.

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we made it to the airport early just to be sure we didn’t miss another flight…only to have that flight delayed.  it didn’t matter.  we made it and I survived.

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MONTREAT

this year we had a bigger group so we had two houses.  we had a blast.  it was a very fun dynamic group of kids.  one of the houses (our main house) was close enough to events to where kids came and went.  we had a great porch that over looked people walking to and from different places and so our kids would yell “hey” as people walked by.  we became known as the “hey porch house.”  I will say I was very proud of my kids.  one of our youth got stung so I asked if anyone had any tobacco products to put on the sting (no punishment or questions asked – and everyone said no)!  we had tent city next to our porch.  at the girls house we had a cut out of a coyote and it kept moving around the house.  it was pretty funny.

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HIGH SCHOOL LAWN PARTY

kick off the school year right!

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MIDDLE SCHOOL LOCK-IN AND BON FIRE

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COLOR WARS NIGHT

we made our own color chalk and did games with the chalk….it didn’t work out as well.  next time we will just buy the stuff.  it smelled funny, was the consistency of weird jello, and the kids spread it on the ground and rolled in it to try to get it to stick.

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CORN MAZE

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I think that catches me up from church activities.  I know there were a lot of things I didn’t have my camera for, but this is a taste of the past year thus far!

memorable dates

there have been a few dates that have come and gone while i was on “sabbatical” that i should mention….well i don’t know if i should but i want to.

july 18, 2013: marks the 12th year that leslie hasn’t been with us.  andy was at camp so i had to work and hang out alone.  some years i spend the day reflecting and smiling and laughing at the memories and other years i can’t get past the tears to really smile at the fun times we shared.  this year was a strange mix of the two.  i would have crocodile tears running down my face and burst into laughter fluttering between the two extremes all day.  it was weird but surprisingly comforting.  i wore my ladybug earrings that i got for my birthday in her honor and her blue necklace that she bought when she went to the beach with me and my family.  (i have to wear it around my wrist as a bracelet because the clasp pulls hair like no bodies business…which explains 1. why it was on the clearance table when leslie picked it out and 2. why it had her brown hair stuck in it when claudette gave it to me.  i also bought a sprite and drank it.  at lunch in high school i would usually share her lunch (usually eat a fry) and share her drink which was always sprite – so it only seemed right to enjoy one!

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july 21, 2013: marks the 12th year andy and i have been together and the 6th year we have been married.  with each year i think about our story and how imperfectly perfect it is for us.  i think about all the ups and downs of before we were together and after.  i think about all of the could have beens and should have beens.  i think about how lucky i am to have him in my life and how blessed i am that he is my best friend and husband.  this is when i tell you that we had an incredibly romantic date with a horse-drawn carriage ride to a 5 star restaurant with a sting quartet playing while we laughed over the best meals ever…but i would be lying…what we did was close to that – we spent the night at vbs at church.

at the reception

 

july 28 – august 3, 2013: high school trip to montreat.  it was surprisingly cool and a good week.  there were good things about the program and bad…but it is still wonderful montreat.  one of the nights the choir was singing and on the front row of the auditorium we heard a noise (it wasn’t terrible but it was different).  there was a little old man playing a recorder.  we laughed at him.  it was out of place and seemed a little weird.  then it got weirder.  after that song he went on stage.  there were two youth playing drums and they looked confused like this man wasn’t suppose to be on the stage.  he walked up to the microphone with his 3 recorders (all different sizes) and started to play with the choir.  when they finished the choir director came to the front and I figured he would ask him to leave the stage but he didn’t…he let him play another song.  the man was so excited and it made me tear up.  he was so passionate about being up in front of 500 youth and wanted to share his talent with all of us and he did.  he was allowed to play and you could see the joy that it brought to him.  it was a touching moment to me and one of the high lights of my week.

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august 21, 2013: marks the 7th year anniversary of when he proposed to me and my wildest dreams became a reality.

I am sure there are other dates that fall into this post…but I can’t think of them off the top of my head.  this is the problem with not blogging on a regular basis!

weekend highlight: pow, wow, and holy cow

something we have done with different youth groups (usually in sunday school or back home group meetings at camp) is to list your pow (worst thing about the day/week), wow (best part of day/week), and holy cow (time that you felt closet to God…like holy cow that was amazing).  since this weekend was a long one with a lot of things going on i think that this is the best way to do this past weekend update.

friday.5/24/13:

wow: got to see 7 youth graduate from GHS (2 of them spoke at it) and the graduates got to throw their caps and spray each other with silly string!

pow: wanted to get to bed early so we could be on the road early – but still got in bed really late.

holy cow: the moon was amazing as we were leaving.  we saw it coming over the mountain and it was a simply beautiful reminder to me that God is good. 

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saturday.5/25/13:

wow: we got to go back to charlotte and left on time (for us).

pow: it was a long drive because otis didn’t want to ride in the back and because he wouldn’t lay down on my lap.

holy cow: being surrounded by family and friends. 

sunday.5/26/13:

wow: got to hang out with everyone at the track and had a great breakfast. 

pow: didn’t win the race pool and made cj (our niece cry) – she was tired and ready to leave and i messed with her anyways.  😦

holy cow: two of the youth from monroe came to eat with us and see us and it was a great reminder of the time we spent with them and the faith journey we all went on together.  

monday.5/27/13:

wow: hung out with sandy and ginger, otis slept in the back of the car the entire way home, stopped at montreat and black mountain (got a new pair of sun glasses), no work which means a short work week! 

pow: traffic was bad and a ton of police were out and i was nervous (but thankfully we didn’t get pulled over or that would have been worse) and i helped andy make his to do list for the week and his pack list for his first summer trip and it made me sad (even though i love lists).  also on this trip there was little time to get together with other people. 

holy cow: going through the gates at montreat.

the rest of this week is going to be crazy.  there is so much to do with andy’s summer ramping up.  we had the pool party (end of year) with the youth and the rest of his nights are full of meetings.  we had a great weekend in charlotte and safe travels and great conversation and visits so even though my post isn’t full of fluff it was still wonderful. 

and the rains came

i woke up this morning and automatically wanted to go back to bed.  the room was cold and i was snuggled down with otis next to me with andy yelling at me to get up.  i drug myself out of bed to a cloudy, gloomy monday.  (i planned to get a few pictures of the sky around lunch since it was really cool looking, but my phone couldn’t capture it and i didn’t have my digital in my purse). 

i sat at my desk and glanced at the window watching the rain pour down.  there is something that moves me about rain.  with the crashing rain drops comes a rollercoaster of emotions.  a lot of times rain makes me sleepy and makes me wish i was wrapped up in a quilt.  sometimes rain makes me want to weep.  i imagine that God is up there weeping for some reason (usually at what is hidden deep in my soul) and so it makes me want to weep…knowing that God is crying for and with me.  it reminds me of events and milestones that have passed in my life with a gloomy, rainy day.  days when i have found out that people i love have passed away, times when childhood friendships were restored on front porches, fun dates with andy, getting caught walking with otis, mending broken hearts at montreat, seeing the beauty of God in his creation.  after the urge to weep comes the sense of peace and hope.  it reminds me of montreat and all the bittersweet memories that come with that territory.  it reminds me of a childhood spent playing in the woods, and in forts and creeks, it reminds me of waking my brother up to make a big bed out of our blankets and pillows in the hall and sleeping away from windows (in case of tornadoes – long story).  it reminds me of summers in TN playing in the rain and sleeping with the windows open with the patter of rain on the roof.  i remember running through the house in the spring to shut windows during freak storms so that it didn’t blow in.  i remember when times were simpler.

me and will playing in the rain

there are days that i sit at my desk and i want to run outside and dance in the rain like i did before.  i want to run back to those memories and be comforted by the soft, cold raindrops that fall from the heavens.  i want to escape the stresses of life today and trade them for the happy memories that come with rain, but i know that with the happy memories comes some sad ones as well.  i also know that each day it rains more memories (happy and sad) will be made and my rollercoaster will continue…