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

Galatians 5:1

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!!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Moving To Mississippi By Josiah Kaler

This is Winnie. At first I thought it was no big deal but I was all wrong.

I thought that we were only going to leave for a year and then come back.

I was wrong. Beacuse we moved to Mississippi.

In all times praise the lord!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Welcome to Mississippi....

Anybody remember Jo's sad little blog about leaving Gallaudet? He wanted me to take this picture of him while he was really, really sad. Well, I'm happy to say that he is now settled into Mississippi and though "the transition was rough", he has decided we must visit Gally regularly but live it up while we're here. So I'm going to try to catch you up on our transition....
After a flight to LA (that's still California to me) and a blazing road trip up the coast, we can now officially say we made it back to the "Deep South." We are fortunate that our classmate and friend Wendy took the job next door in Louisiana, Cheryl's best friend from high school lives three hours west in Texas, and the Links are right up in Tennesse. But for the most part, we are on our own trying to figure out, what does "deep south" really mean??

Honestly, we're not sure yet. We're collecting data. So far it means catfish, family friendly, everybody has a church, and we're the ones with the "really strong accents." The Kudzo vine that has "taken over the South" really is all over the freeways in most of the state, (like in the picture above, it covers up the native plants) but we are in Jackson, which is the largest city and the capitol, and we don't see much of it here. Apparently somebody thought it would be good erosion control for the highways (it came from Japan), but oops! They didn't know it would like the humidity so much. The best story I've heard is how in Tennessee they've hired a committee of goats to handle it...

Anyway, of course our main reason for being here is for Cheryl's new job at MSD. So far, it has been a lot to learn... from achievement tests to character education to crisis response and remembering names, it certainly keeps me busy!! Every week gets better as I learn the school, the staff and the needs of the students.... so far, so good. (breathe, pray, balance...)

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the kids are all doing great in school. Shayna made the Cross Country team (though she'll wait to officially start in track) and loves middle school. The boys love their elementary 3rd and 5th grade classes, and can't seem to bring home enough homework. Greg had his first substitute teaching job last Friday, and already has three days lined up for October, all at the middle school. We are still in Winnie, as it is a cozy constant for us.... and we do still love the camp life. Oh! Have you met our new pet?

This is a close-up of Columbia- she is about the size of an oreo. Not quite a dog but we do love her so!! And we love and thank our friends out at Refuge of Hope in DC for the gift!
Now back to the camping... the weather here the first month was atrocious hot, but fall has arrived and we've already forgotten about it. Now the days are warm (75-80) and the nights are cool. We are making some friends at the campgound.... including the alligator Betsy that hangs out down at our end of the lake. We have braved our inflatable boat out their once (the lake is full of alligators, and people water ski all the time....) and I was only a little freaked out as her little eyes came up out of the water watching us paddle away. Just a little. Enough for me to suggest we maybe take our boat to the pool....

Where we had so much fun playing Nancy Drew and capsize and every other crazy game with all the kids in the camp, I couldn't believe we didn't think of this sooner. And keeping Betsy in mind, I know Gran would think that move to the pool was very...
We're planning on getting out sight seeing soon, and we'll try to keep you updated with our transition. For now, there's school tomorrow so...
Nite Nite Y'all!!