Thursday, April 23, 2009

Catching Up!!!

Post #1
Here is about three weeks of catching of Breakaway, the Tax Day Rally and Jen's Senior that order. That procrastinator side of my personality seems to come out when blogging! Oh well, better late than never...Enjoy!
We will start with some follow-up pictures to my last post on Breakaway - the spring break outreach. These are at the park in Orange Cove (I thought of our friends the Parish's who live a hop/skip from here out in the countryside of Orange Cove...hello Parish's!) Two nights of the outreach the team went to Selma and Orange Cove to reach out to the community, feed them, have an Easter egg hunt and a time of worship and teaching...

Jen in the park

Coya with the bullhorn...a dangerous thing for her!
Setting up for the Easter Egg hunt

Lots of eggs with candy in them! I know because Christy and I filled hundreds of them one afternoon.

Setting up for the BBQ

Lots of food. The Selma outreach was the night before and they planned for 200...500 came! In Orange Cove they were prepared...500 hot dogs, buns, drinks and chips....about 300 came, but at least they were prepared this time.

Unloading sound equipment and instruments

The crowd gathers

Worship leader, Isais (don't know if I spelled his name would think I would know, we only went to high school together...sorry friend!)

The band

Before the park event the church they were working with fed the group a wonderful Mexican meal...YUM!

At the church waiting for dinner

The food

Post #2
We did our civic duty and participated in the Tax Day Rally last Wednesday. What a group was there...I believe they had 6400 registered and estimated 7500 actually came.
The crowd

The platform for various speakers

Signing in

I liked this gentleman's sign. I could write a paper on what is happening in our country right now, but don't worry, I won't do it here. I will simply say that in studying early 20th century history with Jen this year, I am compelled to exercise my democratic right to allow my voice to be heard, whether through a letter to my congressman or a gathering like this. It was a peaceful, but bold statement that regardless of the direction some of our leaders want to take us in, people value their freedom and will not easily surrender it.

The American Flag...I still cry every time I hear our national anthem. Maybe in getting older I am just more appreciative and aware of the freedoms we are privileged with as Americans.

Post #3
Senior Trip!!!
Jen's Senior Class with CHEFA left Sunday afternoon for a three day trip to Disneyland and Huntington Beach. Here they are gathering for the trip.

Mrs. H. handing out caps and gowns....that was a bit surreal...the first official item to arrive for graduation.

Friends, all ready to go!

Kevin, Kelsey and Teresa. Kelsey is one of Jen's good friends and Teresa, her mom, was their room mom for the trip. She couldn't have had a better chaperon...Teresa loves to have fun and is the perfect mom for those late night talks!

The group, all ready to go!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Breakaway...Easter Break Ministry

This week is Mission's week at church (People's Church). Usually we take Jr. High, High School and College students to Mexico for the week to work with a church down there. Not this year...too much crime and a warning from the U.S. government to stay out has rerouted our plans here to the Central Valley. Although we didn't know this would happen, God knew the plan all along. The miracle stories of how it all came together are just amazing, even back to a "chance" meeting back in the fall between one of our pastors and a city worker who helped to provide most of the support equipment for the week.
Joining us this year are churches from the Fresno/Clovis area including Valley Christian Center, Northeast Assembly of God, New Covenant and others, as well as Bayside Church and Christ Church from the Sacramento area. That is an amazing story itself. They had every intention of going to Mexico like they usually do over Easter break as well, but also cancelled their plans because of the danger. Somehow they got wind of what we were planning to do here in the local area and called to see if they could join us! They brought over 400 students with them, not including their support team. Approximately 25 people came down just to do the cooking! It's been an amazing experience for the kids and for all of us volunteering. There are about 800 students participating and they are all camping out on the People's campus. The best part for those of us that attend People's is being able to reach out to fellow believers in the community and open up our facility to host everyone. It's been very exciting and I just have to applaud the leadership that saw God's leading in this and in faith said "Let's do it!".

Walking into the campsite
This is Honey. She's a one year old Golden Lab. A member from Bayside brought her down to spend the week with us. The kids love having her around, and she greets everyone as they walk through the welcome area. Diesel even got to play with her a little bit one day!

This is the Command Center...the hub for every one's coming and going. The Fresno Fire Department donated this bus for us to use this week, as well as the showers, wash areas and porta potties.
These are some of the security guys. They are all from Bayside in Sacramento. They actually have a team of about 10 or so. They keep the place secure and someone from their team is up all night making rounds. We couldn't have done this without their help. Way to go guys!
Christy and I on "security detail". Yes, we signed up to help with security Tuesday and Wednesday thinking we would be sitting in our lawn chairs watching the comings and goings of people while having a Starbucks. Instead, they put us at the welcome entrance to make sure that no one got through without a wristband wristband, no entrance. They asked us if we could handle it and of course we said no problem...we're Mom's. (Never underestimate the power of a Mom!) :)
Nick and Jen...Nick is home on break and helping with the Jr. High this week.
Wash stations
The Porta Potties...this was about half of them.
The tents where all 800 sleep. That' Jen to give you a little perspective. Each of the tents sleeps 25.
These are sooo cool....Portable showers! I hear they use these at Spirit West Coast, but I had never seen one before. They had two tractor trailers of for the boys, one for the girls.
Now here is the important stuff...the food. This is one of the dessert tables. We have church volunteers bringing goodies each day for dessert. YUM!
Dinner time! That's my honey helping serve food. There are approximately 4-6 tables set up for each meal for the people to file down and get their food. The food has been amazing! Last night was Tri-tip. The kids are working hard all day, so it's been a treat to come back to a warm meal each night.
This is the Jr. High group from People's. They finished up yesterday with their work and were packing up to take off.
Tomorrow I'll try to post some pictures from some of the work sites.

Me and my better half

J & J

Our Marine

Matt and Trin having fun w/ Joshie and Jenna

Kadence and Keaton

Girl power

Gabe and Josh w/ Grandpa

When they were young

About Me

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Wife of 23 years to David, Mom to Josh - 19, Jenna - 17 and Nacoya - 16. Voice teacher, choir director and church choir member. I love the outdoors... ocean and mountains, my family, friends, pretty flowers, quiet mornings and more than all that, Jesus.