Experiencing our nation through its environments, animals, people and history.

Galatians 5:1

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

"White as Snow"

Shayna has been thinking about giving her life to the Lord for awhile now, and decided she wanted to be baptized "out in nature" on Christmas day. Never mind now that most people around these parts choose to do it in the pool (in case Stumpy decides she's hungry while you're out in her territory)... Shayna would have none of that! It was to be in the Peace River on Christmas day, rain or shine!
Fortunately we had lots of shine, both from the warm winter sun and from our precious daughter. She gave her confession of faith on the shore, before her peers and several traveling comrades, and then she and Greg walked out to the middle of the river.
(she did give a little "brrrrrrr" as her bum sank down...)
In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit....

Buried with Christ....
And risen with new life!!

Winnie Christmas...

For Christmas we are back down in Florida, enjoying the simplicity and several friends from the road... as well as the sunshine and taste of sabbatical life that is now in our blood. We hung mini stockings in Winnie...

Got some new jammies and started a tradition of making a gingerbread house.

The note to Santa said "Please enjoy some cookies but you may only admire the Gingerbread house."
(by Jo!)

Friday, December 24, 2010

JJ's Christmas Program

JJ's 5th grade classes at his school put together a program called "Christmas around the World". (like his holiday baseball shirt??!!) They sang songs from various countries and learned a few international traditions.

JJ's line was about Austria. He said "Once everyone has gathered around the Christmas tree, they all sing Christmas carols and wish each other a "Frauliche Whighnatcen."
And here's a little closing song for you...

Merry Christmas!!


For Thanksgiving we traveled up north a bit and had an amazing time with our dear friends the Links... and got to check out lots of new territory. Here is a quick photographic journey of our time...
Seeing downtown Nashville...

Checking out some trails...

Oh, and then there's the feast...

(we did eat more than just pie.... didn't we?)

Nashville has some amazing houses..

Including this one where one of the Oakridge boys has retired.
(Shayna wants to learn to carve like that...)
We were sad to leave, but took an amazing drive down the Natchez Trace Parkway back "home" to Mississippi.

Even got a Christmas card shot out of the deal.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Fall in Missippi

Hi Mom....

It's a beautiful fall weekend out here- low 70's, the birds are singing, and we're looking at a week off for Thanksgiving break. So I decided first thing, I must do what I have had little time to do since we've been here... take you (via my camera) out on a walk around our campground. If there are ever moments where I feel cramped in Winnie, I just take myself out for a little walk and look out instead of in. And here are little bits of what I see!!

If I'm really energized I take a jog out along/across the reservoir, but the camera doesn't accompany me on those trips. The Saucony's do, however, so you are still with me!! I hope you enjoyed your little tour of our backyard. We are headed up to Nashville for Thanksgiving. We're bringing apple pie and Mush.
Love, Cher
P.S. Since I know you are a good spell-checker and noticed my last two titles, I better explain. This one, I am acclimating... down here they don't pronounce the state with four syllables, only three. As for Jo's, that's how he pronounced the gig: his "pre-formance".

Saturday, November 20, 2010

JoJo's preformance!

To kick off our Thanksgiving week, Jo's classes did a performance at school. He was so proud,
and the whole show was very good!! Surrounded by grandparents and the holidays, I caught myself missing family... but at the same time being very thankful for the opportunities for us here. Check out the videos below for some 3rd grade choral entertainment from the South, and Jo's solo!!

GOOD JOB JO!! Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Mission on Halloween-eve.

I'm a Man in Black, so don't mess with me. My mission was to seek out the alien C.A.D.D. After moving to Mississippi, we found out that everyone here goes trick-or-treating on Saturday when when Halloween falls on a Sunday. When transporting to earth, C.A.D.D. accidently brought Buzz Lightyear with a green mohawk, stopped by the 60's, and picked up the singer Slash and his drummer. I spent most of the evening by myself keeping them under control, because my partners got lost in the pitch-black maze. Hot dogs and cotton candy kept my energy up.
Mission accomplished.

Settling in, and Happy Halloween!!

Wow, here we are at the end of October already!! Things have been busy here, all settling into our school routines. It is quite a different year for us, instead of exploring America we are investing in a new community... which is still a learning experience yet rewarding as well. We've uncovered some more interesting facts about the "deep south"... like they have only recently stopped "paddling" in schools (a huge shocker to us), and the other piece... that a good lot of the folks here really miss it. I am SOOO thankful for my multi-cultural training that has taught me to try to understand things from various world views!!

Here is my favorite world view lately, the one right from our patio at Winnie. I love the flocks of birds that are migrating down for the winter, and sing to me from the treetops!!
Meanwhile, Shayna is off on her own adventure for the weekend. She went on a Junior Highschool Retreat from church.... it was so wierd for me to see off my baby girl I had to take a picture of the bus. She did leave behind her pupmkin artwork for us...
And now, to tell you about Halloween, here's JO!
This is Cadd: "crazy alien dancer dude"!
Cadd was the champion jumper at the Fall Festival. Cadd's favorite game was the basketball game. After all the fun and games, the fireworks came on. It looked like blasting mars!
Cadd wondered if they came from his very own planet!
Before he knew it, Cadd was face to face with his enemy: a Men-in-Black agent. He jumped and danced his way back to safety. If you see Cadd in your neighborhood, contact the MIB!!

Happy Halloween!!