Dear Little One,
This is a busy summer for your Dad and me. It’s been fun having so many friends get to share in our excitement in person. Hugs abound, enthusiasm for the Lord’s bounty is proclaimed, and a few “bump grabs” have been occurring. (For the record, I have started to show in a bit more obvious way, and I’m a “physical touch” type of person, so this is welcome.)
First there was a week at Family Camp. Somerset Beach is our home-away-from-home and I wrote all about it last year in a letter to you. Kevin was in utero when he first started “attending” this annual event and now we’ll get to say the same about you! The highlight of my week was getting to teach Holy Yoga at 7am each morning. It was thrilling to have not just 5 or 6 students (as I expected), but 17-25! At least two-thirds of the attendees were brand new to yoga and the student ages ranged from 12-65. Everyone did wonderfully, and I was so encouraged to continue my pursuit teaching. With all of the traveling and conference events we participate in, I hope to become an itinerant Holy Yoga instructor.
The next week we headed to Spring Arbor University for a week at Bible Quiz Nationals. This is an event that’s near and dear to our hearts, especially as we’ve made wonderful friends from all over. It’s our one opportunity to see those loved ones from Seattle and Wisconsin, New York and Kentucky. Having shared our story of your long-desired conception, there was so much rejoicing as we reunited!
Your Daddy was a Quiz Master for the week, getting to administrate the rounds of competition for Senior Teen Vet quizzers. Having been a quizzer and coach himself for many years, he knows the inner workings of the teams and does a wonderful job in this role. And then there’s the awesome benefit of hearing him preach each Sunday quoting the Scripture passages that have been deeply engrained into his soul thanks to years of study and discipline. Time well spent.
Here’s a “bumpie” from my week at SAU (July 2nd):
We had the next few days at home to recover, do laundry, catch up on meetings and counseling sessions for church, and prepare in advance for the next few Sunday services. We were off again on Friday, July 10th for General Conference 2015. Every four years the North American Free Methodist Church has it’s week long business and worship sessions. This is an incredible time of fellowship and networking with pastors and missionaries, worship leaders and friends from literally all over the world. We got to know Dosseh, the district director of the Ivory Coast and Togo (Africa) FM Conference. Our church had just committed to giving toward the founding of the Ivory Coast church conference and it’s so exciting to put voices and faces with the names on a page.
We had lunch (or dinner or coffee dates) with so many good friends – Randi & Kris who are moving back to Toledo! (three cheers for having a ministry couple, who’s our age and stage of life, just minutes from home!), Caitlin (a dear friend from college, who lives so close but we had to go to Orlando to meet up with her), Darryl & Tom and Randy and Jon and Rick & Kim (good friends from our Albion, NY church), Cathy & Steve (SoMi pastor friends), Colleen (a Pittsburgh pastor who we met briefly at quizzing a year ago and kept in touch with), and so so many more. Our hearts were full!
Plus, we stayed in this beautiful resort where the convention center was located. The pool and the sun were good for my soul!
We spent this past week back at the homestead. More laundry. But lots of home cooking which tasted so good after only eating out for a week. We accomplished much and had some fantastic meetings with church friends. One of those days I got the gotta-rearrange-furniture bug (which I “catch” every month or two.) I consulted a measuring tape and your daddy’s geometrically minded brain and we set to work. He spoke my love language so beautifully as we worked together to bring our gigantic sectional upstairs to the living room. I had found it on Craigslist back in the fall for $500 and loved it. But it was to be used in the basement “man cave.” Then we rearranged everything and brought the tv and game system upstairs. This left the sectional all forlorn in the basement.
Today we’re loading the car again and driving back out to Somerset. This time I’ll be the speaker for Young Teen Camp all week! I’m honored to have been asked back, and feel a little more at ease knowing what to expect this time around. (I spoke last year at the same camp.) Kevin is coming with me to spend time away from the office sermon planning through Advent. (And also because I have a leeettle bit of separation anxiety. :)
As I take you with me to camp, I’m praying every day for you to grow to know Jesus (even now) and to seek wisdom. I’m praying that I’ll speak the right words this week, clearly and concisely and kindly, as God leads me. I’m praying these middle schoolers will see Jesus and learn to love him more.
And I’m so excited to watch you “popping out,” Little Girl. You’re beautiful.
I love you,