Monday, June 30, 2008


It is our first son's birthday today so I've been thinking about sons. What a blessing is a son. Yes, daughters are blessings too, but a son is - confidence. In many ways.

Physically, confidence in their brute force. Yes, as in lifting heavy things! I know daughters can struggle to lift heavy things too, but a son - he does it with such ease. Take for instance - carrying heavy things up stairs is not only carried up those stairs - they seem to bound up those stairs! Hauling that heavy bag of garbage out, "Careful, it's very heavy." But it seems only to be a tiny back pack as they carry it away. Security? When my sons are around I feel more confident in my own security. There are confidences to be had when sons are around!

I never did get down on the floor to teach my baby boys to make car sounds but one day, there he was - on the floor making car sounds. I had busied myself with my three daughters before my sons came and had watched my daughters do "girl" things for years. Now here was my first son, making car noises. I remember standing in wonder, watching him.

One day as I was busy in the kitchen, he slid the patio door open and asked me, "Mom? Can I have your wheels?" "Wheels?" "Yeah, the ones right here," he pointed to the two wheels on the BBQ grill. Never once did my daughters ever want those ol' wheels! "No," I said flatly, "Those are my wheels."

My Dad was disgruntled with Doug and I for too many years after we first were married. I long suspected it had to do with us getting married anyway after his big announcement - "there will be no more marriages for two years!" We languished under his disapproval for much too long! Dad!!! Wasted years that could have been blessed years. (Sadly, my Dad passed away in 1987, only 61.)

I laid my youngest son Kris into Dad's arms and I can remember his happy face when he looked at Kris for the first time. "Oh, you got another boy! I better now call Doug - my son," he announced.

For years he called my Dougie "that boy." When our first son Klint was born he announced, "Doug is not a boy anymore, I will now call him man." When Kris was born he said, "Klint is now the man, Kristophoer is the boy, and Doug I will call my son." I do remember the heart felt joy I had that day. I miss the simple joys of having Dad around - a lot.

And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Matthew 3:17.

Maybe it had something to do with his own upbringing - these many announcements. We all seem to live our lives with unsaid laws don't we?

When I look at the men boys out there today I am ----- seriously worried! They know how to wear their caps; they know how baggy their pants should or shouldn't fit; they know how to strut; they know which music is the kind; they even know how to woo a woman into living against the rules set in God's word, even the unsaid rules in her heart (Just watch Judge Judy!).

God forbid that we should ever be in a position of having to put any confidences in help from such. Better yet, our sons should be taught to be responsible. To be leaders. To be gentle with power. To care for their pets with kindness. To take care of their toys and not trash them. To be aware of the weakness women have to deal with every month! That dastardly cycle that wrecks havoc to our emotional up and down months!

Both of my sons birthdays are in June. All my daughters birthdays are in September, yes, we decided to have our daughters in September and sons in June. ha! NO, we didn't, it just happened that way.

Yesterday Klint and Calli came over to share the letter Klint had just received telling him that he had PASSED his FE/EIT test. And that has to do with Electrical Engineer stuff. It is an eight hour long test covering twelve topics in the general engineering session test and thirteen topics in the electrical engineering session test! Congratulations Klinton! As your Gramppa Van would say: "You done good!"

... and happy birthday Klinton. You are a blessing to both Dad and I. I appreciate your heart and how you live to praise and worship God's Son, Jesus Christ. It has been a blessing to be your Mom and I am "well pleased." I will always remember the day you were born and your Dad laid his head down on my shoulder and cried. I am sure he was thanking God for the blessing of a son - after three daughters. Then three years later he got his "bonus boy" too!

God has been good to us. Not only do we have our own sons, we have two added sons our daughters married. May God work in their hearts and lives too, bringing them both to the point of wanting foremost in life to praise and worship Jesus Christ - above all else. It is such a blessing to know God's Son, and better yet - to be known by Him. We are family!

May the sons in each one of your lives rise up to become your men heroes that you can fully rest your confidence in!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Arctic Thunder

The Thunderbirds are at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage today.

We can see them flying from here at home - off in the distance! Doug and I plan to watch Arctic Thunder tomorrow. Hopefully the clouds will be gone and the skies will be blue!

The weekend celebration of Alaska's 50 years of statehood being put on by the Air Force began last night with a concert by Winona Judd! The beautiful Winona has a BLOG! ... that she needs to update.

Here are a couple of videos I found at YouTube of the Thunderbirds in Alaska.

KTUU's newcast about the Thunderbird's show going on today and tomorrow.

May God keep the Thunderbird's safe today as they perform for Alaska. Our Air Force events always have the largest turn-out of Alaskan's to their shows than to any other event - even the State Fair! ha! Alaska loves the Air Force!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Check out Marie's Blog

Marie has created a great slideshow of our visit with Doug's folks, or Jan and John, or Mom and Dad, or Gramma and Gramppa, or Yaya and Opa.

Thanks for sharing your photos Marie, they are always so good!

Our family definitely is not perfect, but her great photos make us look pretty close to it. ha

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Cookie's Latest Drawing

I am playing for Cookie Sunshine's drawing for her Little Shoes series. One week away until she has a drawing for six little prints. Cookie does great drawings, check her out at The Cookie Sheet.

Little shoes like to roam
Little Shoes need a home
Little shoes like to prance
Little shoes love to dance
Little shoes like to run
Little shoes must have fun!

Cookie Sunshine Donna --- I hope that I win!

Good Works

I don't usually watch TBN but this morning I did watch some Christian programs on that Network. Franklin Graham was on a show with Jan Crouch, the wife of Paul Crouch who is the man behind the business. Jan can be very captivating because of how she applies her make-up! I don't mean to be mean or hurtful when I say that. I don't know anyone in my own life that wears as much make-up or does their hair up so big as she does! I don't agree with the way the Gospel is presented on many of the programs on TBN - (godliness leads to prosperity). But I did enjoy listening to Franklin Graham share of all the things the Billy Graham organization is involved in.

Anyway, I have never really been impressed with Billy Graham's son Franklin through all the years. I previously knew that he had lived on the reckless side of life and I believe it was those stories that have always clouded my impression of him. Now he is the President of the organization that began with his Dad. Franklin said, "You know what being president means I get to do? All the things that my Dad does not want to do." Today, I watched as he shared his heart for helping others. Franklin coordinates so many good works via the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, including the disaster relief program Samaritan Purse, which he claims was the only one allowed into Myanmar (Burma) at the start. I don't know if Myanmar is as restricted to outside help as it was immediately after the cyclone. Samaritan's Purse has a Blog from the Field! Interesting way to keep up with their work that is being done in the world. Great photographs too.

Jan prodded Franklin to share how he became a Christian (He didn't need much prodding since he appears anxious to share the grace of God in his own life). He told of how many people just assumed that he was a Christian, being the son of Billy and Ruth Graham. He said he had always believed in Jesus Christ, but never wanted Him to be Lord in his life, instead he wanted to be in charge of himself. One day his Dad said to him, "Franklin, your Mom and I love you." Franklin nodded. "Franklin you will always have an open door at our home." Franklin knew that. Then his Dad took him by the arm and said, "Franklin I sense that there is a struggle in your life for your soul. You must make a decision, there is no middle ground to following Christ." Franklin said he knew that and he became angry at his Dad for saying that. He said their conversation that day was always was on his mind until one night he got out of bed and prayed that Jesus Christ would be Lord of his life. The rest of his life points to evidences of the wonderful change the unrestrained Holy Spirit works in his life and those around him today.

God is so gentle with us, He never busts into our lives, yet He is always there and deep down inside - we know His presence, whether or not we believe or allow Him to be the influence that changes our daily lives for good.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Banner of Love

Here is a video I watched at GodTube. Kelsey, a miracle baby. A beautiful baby with a beautiful praise for God's power to heal, protect, and give life.

Our visit with Doug's folks was as we thought it would be, short and too fast. Alaska's sunshine came out enough to enjoy the outdoors with them. We had fun family times together and will miss being able to see them each day. Please pray for their safety as they return to Florida. The sun left and it began to rain when it was time to drive them to Anchorage to catch their plane. On our ride home afterwards, the clouds had lifted off of the mountain tops and there we saw new snow!

I left the photo taking up to Marie while we spent time with Jan and John. So, when she puts up pictures from their visit I will encourage you to stop by her blog. (Thanks Marie!).

I never have said much of Doug's folks here on my blog so I would like to take the time now to personally honor them.

First of all they are loving parents to Doug, as a result I stand under that umbrella of care and love too.

"Lord, your love is a banner over us."

Doug's folks came to Alaska as missionaries and worked in Cantwell before Doug was born (55+ years ago.) Doug spent his young growing up years in Cantwell. The people from that area became part of their daily lives and continue to be thought of and prayed for to this day.

The Cantwell River was the former name of the Nenana River. The earliest inhabitants of the area were nomadic Indians who trapped, hunted and fished throughout Interior Alaska. Cantwell began as a flag stop on the Alaska Railroad. Oley Nicklie was the first Indian to settle here. When fur prices dropped, he and his two brothers sought work with the railroad. ALASKA TOUR & TRAVEL

I am thankful for the brother and sister in Christ that John and Jan are to me - that is what I have become to value most since I was 'born' into their lives via Doug and my relationship almost thirty-five years ago (September). Yes, becoming Doug's wife was not much different than a new birth - created and sustained by God throughout all these years. I am thankful for the love, care and friendship John and Jan have displayed towards me through out our married lives.

They enjoyed seeing again the two clans that have continued their name up here in Alaska, Doug's bunch and also Mark's. John and Jan left the mission and began a new living in Florida after John began having physical problems with the cold brought on by severe sugar diabetes shortly after Doug and I and Mark and Karen were married.

It was so good to see them again even if it was a short time. We hope to travel out to Florida sometime, and hopefully soon.

John and Jan, may your trip home be ... uneventful and filled with enough snacks to sustain you! And that's a big hope for traveling via any airlines now-a-days! Thanks for coming to visit your Alaskan clan!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


We were in Anchor Point for another Motocross State Race. Klint, # 212 ran his quad and did quite well - after he and Doug figured out what was wrong with his quad. (A switch in the handle that kept shutting down his machine.) The quitting engine is not a good thing to have happen --- especially right in the middle of a high flying jump. Check with MX ALASKA for the latest results.

Sadly we lost a racer this past weekend at the Homer Racing Lion's race track. Luke Mrugala, # 294, ran a Kawasaki in the 85 Novice class and was only 13. Our hearts go out to his family, his brother who also races (# 292), and his friends that he made at the race track.

I have experienced sudden fears which my heart does not know how to respond to when an accident like this almost happens and in this case did happen. Of course I sympathize with his parents, but I wonder how sound the decision to even race is. I have watched my own sons out on the track and I've asked myself repeatedly "How crazy it this to race around so fast? What if one of them got hurt badly?" To think of an accident like what Luke Mrugala had is something most racing Mom's and Dad's don't want to even imagine. Yet, it does happen and did this weekend.

The motto of VE Racing is to "Have Fun! Be Safe!" - at times like this it seems grossly inadequate to protect my sons from the dangers they face - on every race day. My sons are grown - so ultimately to ride like the raging wind is their choice. Even though it is ---I'm still their Mom and those questions won't go away.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Counting Blessings Today

When upon life's billows you are tempest tossed
When you are discouraged thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, ev'ry doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by.

When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings, money cannot buy
Your reward in Heaven, nor your home on high.

So, a-mid the conflict, whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journeys end.

Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your blessings, see what God hath done;
Count your blessings,
Name them one by one;
Count your many blessings,
See what God hath done.

Johnson Oatman, Jr.

Aged 19, Oatman joined the Methodist Church and years later, granted a license to preach in local Methodist congregations. His mainstream career was in a mercantile business and later as administrator for a large insurance company in New Jersey. At the same time, he wrote over 5,000 hymn texts. "Count your Blessings" is generally considered to be Oatman's finest hmn. It first appeared in Songs for Young People, compiled and published by Edwin O. Excell in 1897. It has been sung all over the world. One writer has stated, "Like a beam of sunlight it has brightened up the dark places of the earth." SUITE101.COM

Wow, this man wrote over 5,000 songs! This song I dedicated to my daughter Kim while she was young. She always struggled with setting her eyes on the immediate, getting discouraged, and forgetting all the blessings that she was sitting in which should have been filling her heart with joy. Don't we all do that?

I am trying TRIED to write in the Compose of this blogger to see if I don't have to do the Edit Html. Lately, I need an easier, more simplified life. ha

Counting my blessings this morning... let's not let the worlds troubles take away our JOY! Christ in us - the hope of Glory!

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Our Cold Alaskan Spring/Summer

Summer is slow to show up here. Tonight was the first time the air actually felt warm without the sun shining down to help. It was a pleasant thing to realize when my daughter Kim said, "It's warm!"

Of course our warm is not warm warm. Not the warm I felt when I traveled to Tennessee and it was warm from the top of my head clear down to my toes! But I do realize I am in Alaska. I get no sympathy from online friends... "Well why don't you just move down south?"

Not easy as all that!

This coming week my husbands parents will be visiting. I hope it warms up enough for them to at least be comfortable... they are from FLORIDA!

Oh dear.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Marriage Mondays - Our Wedding Day

1st Monday Every Month at Chrysalis
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It's Marriage Monday once again with e-Mom. I am glad that I am able to share a little about Doug and my big day.

I was never particular about things like this back in the day. I actually found it to be a bore to plan this wedding ceremony. My only love was to be with Doug. I cared not for the way the ceremony looked but my only concern was that I would be able to go home with Doug at the end of the day! How pathetic is that?

We got married on September 21st, 1973 along with Doug's brother Mark and his beautiful wife Karen. Karen and I went to school together and I always considered her to be my very best friend. I still value a special relationship with her. I was fortunate to be able to share my big day with her by having a double wedding.

There is not much I remember of our day and when I asked Doug what he remembered about our wedding day he said, "We got married?" We were married in the fall so our flowers were vibrant yellows and oranges. One thing I loved about my bouquet was it had an ivy plant which I planted and had in my home for years until my sweet brother-in-law David house sat for us and let it freeze! Our whole house froze when the heat went off (for reasons I don't know) while he was not there.

I have searched high and low for our wedding photographs, they are here somewhere! I did find one picture that was separated from the rest and was on my way to photograph it and set it down to welcome my daughter and her children over for the evening (they are out fishing now) and then I could not find it! BUT I did find these pictures of Karen and my bridal shower. A fun toilet paper wedding dress gown competition! I think my gown won, but maybe it was just that the ladies that decorated me were the loudest!

Being that Karen and I went to a boarding school we had the fun of having many Christian ladies attend our shower. In one of the pictures you will see my Mom. She looks so young!

One story from my engagement. Dad and Mom had just endured my sister Millie and Adam's wedding and after the cooking, the ceremony, the cleaning was done that day Dad announced, "There will be no more weddings for two years!" He held up his two fingers and specifically showed them to me. That was in June that year, and in September - we got married! In November my brother got married and in January my oldest brother got married! (hehehe) Poor Daddy.

A story from our wedding day. Every wedding has something go wrong in it and in ours one of Doug's brothers fainted and Doug's quick Dad jumped up from the pew and saved him from an awful fall. With two weddings going on the ceremony was L-O-N-G! Marrying Doug was one of the best chapters of my life!

I see that e-Mom is having a free Marriage Monday next time, maybe by then I will have found my pictures and can share them then.