Tuesday, March 26, 2013

~Surprising the birthday girl...and meeting my blogging friend.~

 ~Donald and Melinda Shirk and Phillip and I go quite a ways back.  We attended GBS together, and became great friends.  We've been with each other through the dating years, newly married years, through the new baby stages with our first babies, etc.  Kimberly and Bryanna were born about a year or so apart and so have been friends ever since.  Back in 2010 you may remember that the Shirks were the ANGELS I talked about that took a week out of their busy schedule to come and HELP US on our USA house.  We would never have gotten to enjoy the 19 days we got to enjoy in our own home, if it would not have been for them.   A couple months ago, Melinda called me and told me that they were going to have a Sixteenth Birthday party for Bryanna, for she was turning Sweet 16. She told me that the party was not going to be a surprise, but that she would LOVE It if we could fly home from Colombia in enough time to come down to her party to surprise Bryanna.  We've been PRAYING that no one would slip and tell her our secret.  If you can see this picture well enough (It was taken from far away) you can tell by Bryanna's face that we SURPRISED Her half to death.  She later told her mother that the room was spinning around and she thought she was going to faint when she saw us!!!  YEA!  Jesus helped us to surprise her!  (This is one reason I couldn't post our Deputation schedule until after her party! =) 
~Here's some fun pics of her party. ~

~Bryanna's pretty cake that has quite the story behind it.  =) (It slid out of it's box on the way home from Costcos, a friend of Melindas worked on it, then Costcos added some more piping around the edges to replace the edging that had DIED, then a friend did the decorations on top, another lady in TN made the pink roses, and A. Jan transported the icing roses from TN to AL.  There were lots of hands that made this cake the pretty cake it turned out to be. =) ~

~Another HUGE surprise for Bryanna was that her grandparents from AK flew in.  She had no clue and was so SURPRISED that they came too.~

~Our little Mary.~
~Opening gifts.~
~Playing games.~
~Melinda gave Donald a riffle...(that had belonged to her Dad).  She thought that since he now had 16 year old girl maybe he should have a riffle to scare away the boys.  =)~
~At the party another "Heather" showed up.  After the party I told her that I wasn't used to having another Heather around, and she told me that she was sort of named after me.  Her mother loved my sister and I and loved our names and wanted to name her girls after Laura and I.  She got her Heather, but the next 2 were boys and wouldn't have been happy if their Mother would have named them, "Laura." =)  It was so nice to meet Heather.~
~All the young people at the party.~
~About 2 years or so ago my sister emailed me and sent me a blog address. She told me that I just HAD to go to this lady's blog that she surely had a knack for decorating really cute.  So, I went to Brittany's blog, and loved what I saw and started leaving comments.  Then later on Brittany and I started emailing back and forth.  We became fast friends (or to quote Anne with an "E" and what Brittany put on her blog too...we found that we were "Kindred spirits."  I felt like I had found a "sister named Brittany that I never knew I had before." ;-)  I have often commented to my Phillip that Brittany is such a DEAR lady. 
Well, when we knew we were going to Bryanna's birthday party in Pell City, AL, I told Phillip I bet Brittany and her family doesn't live too far to from Pell City.  So, we contacted them about us possibly having a missionary service at their church.  When it worked out on their end too, I was so excited that I was finally going to meet "Brittany from Painted Parsonage." =)
We had a delightful time with them.  It was too short, but our family loved every minute being with their family.  Here's Brittany and I.~
~She snapped this fun picture of our family.  I plan to get it enlarge to hang it in our home.  I bought the frame today. =) ~
 ~MY FUN SURPRISE!!  Many of you may have seen this ADORABLE sign that Brittany made for her house.  (I "borrowed" her picture off her blog so I could show you her sign.)
When I walked into her home and saw her sign in real life it brought tears to my eyes and I said to Brittany, "Where was my brain?  I could have so emailed you and asked you to make me one of these signs and then I could have sent you a check."  (I'd be happy to make my own signs, if I were going to be home to do it. =)
Well, after our delightful afternoon together we took our children to the restroom, gave hugs and said goodbyes and then got into our van to head to the next service. 
About 5 minutes down the road my Sarah (who was sitting on the back bench in our van) asked me, "Mommy, Did Mrs. Brittany give you her sign that says, 'Over and Over, Again and Again, God is Faithful?' "  I said, "No."  She said, "Well, there's one behind my seat right now!!"  I quickly looked at Phillip and asked him, "Phillip, Did Brittany give me HER sign?"  He said, "Yes, while you were in the bathroom with the kids, Brittany pulled this off her wall, handed it to her husband and told him to slip that in our van for you."  So, I called Brittany right away and told her, "Brittany, you have me CRYING!!! This was so SWEET of you.  I was NOT asking for your sign."  She told me that she wanted me to have it.  How thoughtful of her!!!
I can't WAIT to to hang it in our home!!!!!
Thank you TONS, Brittany, I will cherish your sign forever.  =)~
 ~And they took this picture of our families together.  Bro. David told us that our little Mary had him wrapped right around her little finger.  He sat and held her for probably about an hour while she slept on his shoulder.   So sweet.
We'd love to come back through so we could have a longer visit with them.  We feel like we've known them all our lives.  They are dear people.
I told Brittany that we NEEDED to come back on another day besides Sunday, so that she and I could go shopping, and do some crafting together. =)  We had a blast being together. 
Thanks, David and Brittany, for all y'all did for us, we surely enjoyed our fun time in your pretty home. =) 
More pics from our weekend coming up.~

Monday, March 25, 2013

~The first part of our Deputation Schedule~

On the Road again!!....Well, Jesus gave us a wonderful weekend and helped us in our first 2 services.  I have LOTS of fun, exciting pics to share with y'all, but since it's LATE and I'm tired, I'm going to just post a few traveling pics for now.
~We got to my Grandmother's (GG's) house tonight and we are SO HAPPY to see her again!  She's the one that I flew to her 90th birthday party last May to SURPRISE her and the rest of my family. =) She hasn't seen Mary since she was about 6 weeks and Elijah since he was 2.~
Give me a day or two and I'll post pics from our super great weekend, Lord willing. 
In the meantime, here's the first of our deputation schedule that someone had asked for.  There are some slots to still be scheduled, for we couldn't call from Colombia to schedule services, so had to wait until we got State side to finish scheduling.

~2013 Deputation Schedule~
March 12, Tuesday, Arrive in Cinci, OH
March 14-15, Thur.-Fri. Drive to PA.
March 17, Sunday, Attend our CNC.
March 22, Friday, drive to AL.
March 24, Sunday, AM Jasper, AL Pilgrim Nazarene, David Fogelman.
March 24, Sunday PM Pell City, AL Bible Meth., Bro. Copeland
March 26, Tuesday, Service in Maryville, TN, Glenn Dotson. (See Heather's grandmother!)
March 27 or 28, Drive back from TN to Cinci, OH
March 31, Resurrection Sunday, CNC
April 3, Wednesday, Circleville, OH
April 7, Sunday AM, Franklin, IN, Tim Forsee
April 7, Sunday PM, Noblesville, IN, John Forsee
April 10, Wednesday, Thomasville, NC Faith Community Chapel, Pat Davis
April 12, Friday AM, Penns Creek, PA, chapel service at Penn View Bible Institute (PVBI)
April 14, Sunday AM to be scheduled
April 14, Sunday PM, Spring Grove, PA, Matt Orvis
April 16-18, Tue - Thu. Dayton, OH for IHC  =D
April 21, Sunday AM to be scheduled
April 21, Sunday PM, Petersburg, IN, Tim Miller
April 24, Wednesday, Gene Hood's church, Indianapolis, IN
April 25-28 Global Holiness Missionary Convention (CNC)
April 30, chapel Service at Union Bible College
May 1, Chapel Service at God's Bible School
May 1, Wednesday night, to be scheduled
May 4, Saturday, Westfield, IN, Mother / Daughter Banquet (Heather to be with her Moma =)
May 5, Sunday AM, Westfield, IN, Edgar A. Bryan.
May 5, Sunday PM
May 6, Monday, Leave for Out West for Services
The rest of our deputation to be posted later! 
~Phillip driving down the road on Friday heading to Pell City, AL. ~
 ~2 silly boys happy to be riding down the road.  Mary was out taking a restroom break. =) ~
 ~Yours truly, HAPPY to be heading to Pell City...the Bible Methodist camp where I grew up.  We were listening to 3 new Christmas CDs that I had ordered and they had arrived in our mailbox while we were still in Colombia. =) ~
 ~Coming into AL.~
 ~My heart wanted something Spingy to put on our dash, so I quickly put this little arrangement together late Saturday night.  That's non-skid padding underneath it to help it not to slide too much while we are traveling.~

Keep checking back for the pics from our unforgettable weekend filled with surprises, great times with some old friends, having a great time with new friends, etc. =)

Friday, March 22, 2013

~Sorting and unpacking, and RE-PACKING again.~

Jesus really helped us and we got most of our 19 suitcases unpacked, LOTS of sorting and organizing done in our house (still lots more to do), and got re-packed up for deputation.  I've been thrift-store shopping and picking up more chairs for our dinning room table, and different things we need for our house.   I've had a BLAST just being a Homemaker in my home for a little over a week. =)  Our family feels very BLESSED with all Jesus (and others) have done for us!   Our hearts are very THANKFUL!!  Thank you for your sweet comments and prayers!
But as much as I wanted to keep having fun fixing up our house, it was time to leave it again. 
This morning we pulled away from our house to start Deputation 2013!
Here's a few pics for you to enjoy.
~Last Sunday Michael, Beth, and family came down to see us.  My sweet sister Laura suggested that we could put Sunday dinner together.  So, Laura, Beth, and I each made food and put our Sunday dinner together at our house.  We had fun being together, eating, laughing, and chatting.  (In the left-hand corner behind me [under the green sheet] is my Dishwasher...my Christmas present.  I can't wait until we are home long enough for Phillip to hook it up. =) ~
~Here's the kid's table in my kitchen.~
~A tall oak bookshelf that Jesus helped us to find at Goodwill.  We so NEEDED this for our Living Room.  Among other things, I have my blog books, and scrapbooks on it.~
~And as I told you earlier... here's a picture of that Beautiful new living room rug that was in our home when we got back from Colombia.  What a FUN SURPRISE!!  Our wooden floors are quite rough, so this rug is a HUGE blessing and adds such a nice touch!~
~Besides unpacking, and digging in bins and boxes upstairs and down, we've also opened PART of our US mail.  A Big Thank you to each of you who sent Christmas cards/family pics our way.  Several of your pics are now on our 'fridge. =)
While still in Colombia Phillip and Noah ordered a remote control helicopter for part of Noah's birthday gift.  (Remember we didn't buy our kids much for their birthdays for we knew we wouldn't have suitcase space to bring the gifts back.)  
So, here's the kids siting on our couch watching Noah's new helicopter fly.  =) ~
Lord willing, I plan to post our deputation schedule soon.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

~Fun surprises awaited us in our house!~

 Jesus is helping us.  We're slowly but surely unpacking and getting organized...AND packing again. =(  
You'll have to pray for my heart, for I'm not ready to leave my home.  There are so MANY bins and boxes that I want to go through down stairs, so much organizing I want to get done.  
So, here are some pics of some of the fun surprises we found in our home when we flew in from Colombia last Tuesday night.  Enjoy!
~My dear sister Laura, and her family, and a lot of our dear church people came and worked in our house!  I didn't get a picture of all the things they did, but Some of the things they did (not to mention all the work they did in organizing our closets and things, and cleaning)... were: 
~some new-to-us matteresses on some of our beds, 
~a new rug in our living room (pics coming later)
~a new porch light, 
~a new heavy-duty basement door (Our old one was so FALLING APART!!)
~A new WONDERFUL access door to the basement.  Before Phillip had just 2 pieces of plywood that he would have to undo LOTS of screws to get in that door. 
~Before we left to go to Colombia in Jan. 2011, we only got to live in our USA HOME for 19 days.  So, we hadn't done anything with my kitchen floor in my temporary kitchen.  It was pretty rough looking.  
Before we came home this time, someone made put in a new floor, and made my floor look TONS better! =)  I'm so HAPPY with it.~
 ~And they added some more nice "temporary cabinets" to help make my temporary kitchen more user friendly.  So nice!~
 ~Bro. and Sis. Becker brought us home in the church van, so they could see us see all the surprises! =) ~
 ~Our dear Jr. Church kids bought and brought in NICE gifts for our children.
 ~A fun welcome sign in our entry way!~
 ~The girl's room where someone laid down some carpet squares to make it nicer and warmer for the girls.  Before, the floor was just bare wooden floor with GLUE stuck to it.  =) ~
 ~A dear friend made a yummy snack to feed us all.  Here's her beautiful fruit tray.~
  ~Gramp and Gram brought our Christmas gifts that they had saved until we got home.~
  ~Everyone enjoying the nice delicious snack.~
 ~Bryan and Noah eating their snack....HAPPY to be together.~
 ~Mary in her high chair.~
 ~Darla and Sarah...THRILLED to be together.~
 ~A. Laura being with Elijah.~
 ~Me (Heather), Ms. Linda, and Moma.~
 ~Visiting together.~
 ~The church brought in a NICE food pounding!~
 ~We're feeling SO BLESSED!!~
 ~A refrigerator full too!!  THANK YOU, DEAR CHURCH FAMILY!!! Y'all are the BEST!!!~
 ~Our fun antique gas stove...~
 ~With some yummy fruit in our Costa Rican wooden bowl on top.~
  ~Cousins....having FUN playing together again.~
 ~And then ....in started SNOWING...an answer to our ELIJAH'S PRAYERS!!  He couldn't believe it.  He asked if it was REAL SNOW??  He doesn't remember seeing snow ever before in his life.  He was BEYOND happy!  =D  ~
 ~Elijah and A. Laura out in the snow.~
 ~The 3 stooges cousins and A. Laura.  =D ~
 Please pray for us as we try to find everything that needs to go, get our mission's display all ready, and get re-packed up again to leave soon.   THANKS TONS!~
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