Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Night Rider

All week Natalie has been asking to go on a hayride...just her and I. She tells anyone she talks to on the phone that she is going on a hayride.

So...the other day I got the tractor out to drive the camp road in an effort to break up the ice that had just started to soften. However, by the time I got things settled in the camp office and had the tire chains in was dark. But that was no reason to cancel the "night ride" as we dubbed it. Down the driveway, all the way to the mailboxes, and back again. As we left camp Natalie's first questions was, "Can we see the llamas and horses down the road?" After explaining that it was too dark she realized the error of your question. On the plus side though we did see Christmas lights on the neighbor's house at the end of the road. Nothing screams "Merry Christmas!" like blue icicle lights.

Here's Natalie and I on our Night Ride.

Ducks and Tigers and Bears...Oh My!

As many of you know Kelly and I were with McKenna at University Hospital in Syracuse for the whole month of November. We are so very grateful to be back home as a family to enjoy the time we have with McKenna. Our goal is to continue caring for her, keeping her as healthy as possible...which as you can see, is going pretty well. Kelly and I will be sending out family updates from two sources.

1) This blog

2) McKenna's "Care Page" at

You will need to sign in (create an account - which is free and safe). Then you can visit McKenna's care page any time you would like and when we make updates to the care page you will receive an email automatically.
McKenna's Care Page is listed under "McKenna Joy".

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Our Fall Retreat

A Fantastic Fall Retreat!
Wow what a turn out! Everything from the campers and staff, to the weather was AMAZING! We had an overwhelming response to this fall's Shepherds Retreat. Thanks to all of our local counselors and a bunch of out-of-state counselors, 66 campers attended the retreat! What's even more amazing is that we had another 16 campers on the waiting list who were unable to come to the retreat. You can bet that we will be ready with more counselors for our spring retreat this April. We also had a huge amount of staff including counselors, program, service staff, leadership staff, and volunteers. We had 30 students and young adults serving at Shepherds Camp. That's AWESOME! As I mentioned before even the weather was a great turnout. Sure, it was a little chilly and even rainy on Friday...BUT, the sky cleared up, the sun came out, and the temperature rose a bit on Saturday allowing us to go on a few hayrides. Comfortable hayrides in late that's a turn out. The campers and staff also had a great time weaving baskets and crosses for crafts, singing all of our favorite songs from the summer, and as always - enjoying some really good food.

What a blessing to see many of our friends from the summer. We love these retreat opportunities to reconnect and continue presenting the good news of Jesus Christ. From crazy games in the gymnasium to evening was a GREAT weekend at camp.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Hayrides & Hot Cider

It Really is Fall.
Last Thursday we invited all of our Day Camp kids from this summer to join us for a evening of fall fun. The main event of the evening was a hay ride down the road, through the woods, and around the lake. We also enjoyed hot cider, marshmallow roasting by the fireplace, and games in the main building. We had a good turnout with a dozen campers, parents, some friends from our neighborhood, and a few new faces too. It was a great time to reconnect with our campers and meet some parents, while having a blast at camp. And of course (and I don't mean to rub it in), the weather was unseasonably beautiful.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Do You Buddy Walk?

"Let's Go!"

But, if you can't go..."Let's Pray!"

Next weekend is the 10th annual Buddy Walk of Binghamton. The Buddy Walk is an awareness event for Downs Syndrome. This is a fantastic nation wide event that has a GREAT turnout here in Binghamton. This year's Buddy Walk is being held at the Ross Park Zoo - less than 10 minutes away from camp. If you can not come out to the walk I would be grateful for your prayers. Shepherds Camp (myself and some staff) will have a booth at the Buddy Walk and our goal is to meet tons of new friends who live right in our community.

Last year's Buddy Walk (with poor weather) attracted 700 people who walked to raise awareness for Downs Syndrome. This year they are hoping to have OVER 1,000 people. Wow! What an amazing opportunity to INVEST in our community. Please pray for us and the IMPACT we can have at this event and in the lives of individuals who respond to the invitation to attend camp.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Bocce Ball Anyone?

Bocce Ball Invitational Tournament!

Yesterday evening the Arrowhead Shepherds Campers hosted the Bocce Bulldogs. Our 1st Annual Bocce Ball Invitational Tournament was PERFECT. The weather was great, we kept the bugs under control, the athlete were geared up, and the crowd was excited.

Through a few contacts and conversations God has begun a great relationship between Shepherds Camp and the Special Olympic
s. We praise God for His leading as we continue to fulfill our vision of making an IMPACT on our local community.

The Special Olympics has just introduced bocce ball and we are their very first tournament site. Local Special Olympic athletes and their families came out to camp for this very special event. We also had a few friends and special guests who came to enjoy the games. One of the special guests was Peter Quinn a reporter from News Channel 34. He got great footage of the tournament and included a few interviews. Check out some of the tournament action below...

Friday, August 10, 2007

Spiedie Fun

We have a new family tradition starting. Check out the caricature Natalie and I had done at Spiedie Fest.

Natalie is just as cute as a cartoon.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

We're Still Kick'n...

It's hard to believe that McKenna is 2 weeks old already. We had her 1st check-up today and she weighed in at 7lbs.5oz. (she was 6lbs. 13oz. when she was born). She is a very good natured baby. She sleeps well and when she's awake she's very content just looking around and soaking up her surroundings. Natalie is adjusting well. She still needs to be reminded to be gentle with McKenna, but overall you can tell she loves her little sister. Here are some recent pictures of our girls...

It's a rough life sunbathing by the pool all day!

1st Family Photos...

Over the weekend, my sister Megan and her husband, Aaron were here visiting. While they were here, we made a trip out to the annual Speidie Fest and Balloon Rally. Natalie enjoyed seeing all the hot air balloons and is still talking about them today. As you can see from the pictures, McKenna was less than impressed and decided to sleep through the whole event.

And for those of you who haven't heard, we did decide on a middle name for McKenna. Her name is McKenna Joy!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007


3:30am - "Ben, wake up I think it is time to get packed."

4:15am - "I think we have everything...let's go."

4:30am - "Watch out for that deer! Woah, it's was a buck."

5:00am - "On a scale from one to ten, are you sure the pain is an eight? You seem way too relaxed."

5:30am - "Alright Mrs. Myers we need to fill out a some forms before things get started."

6:00am - "What? You're ready to start pushing. I'll call the doctor."

6:06am - [the doctor] "I hope I don't get towed...I parked in the President's parking space."

6:26am - "Here's your baby girl. Does she have a name?" "Yes, McKenna.

10:30pm - "What a day! Praise God! Enjoy the pictures."

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Half Way Baby!

Summer Blitz!
Things here at camp are absolutely crazy! Here's a quick run down of the past few weeks to keep you up-to-date.

Natalie's Big Month of Milestones:
Natalie turned 2 years old on July 11th. We had a small party with cake and ice cream. Natalie was more excited about the food than the fact that she turned two. Just a few days ago Natalie moved across the hall into her new room, which we have dubbed her "big sister room." That same day we sat down as a family and had a discussion about how big sisters don't use pacifiers. As the discussion came to a close we took Natalie's pacifiers and threw them in the garbage. Since then Natalie has only asked for her pacifier a couple times...and she hasn't cried or thrown a fit about receiving "No" for an answer. This parenting thing is pretty easy [sarcastic grin]. We will see how it goes with two kids at the same time...which should be any day now with a due date of August 5th.

Day Camp
Our first week of day Camp is here and gone. It was a wild and crazy week full of activities, special guests, awesome food and some amazing presentations of the gospel. We were blessed to have a Drama Ministry team with us from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Each day they preformed dramas and mimes giving a tremendous presentation of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then, each afternoon the campers went to Drama Class. This was hands down the most enjoyed program element. The campers asked about Drama Class every day. They could not wait to learn the dramas they were seeing each morning. I was blessed to hear that many of the campers were going home each night to perform the dramas and mimes for their parents. Some families even worked together making up their own dramas. It was great to see the gospel presented in a dynamic way each day...building on the day before...and then become a very tangible activity that our campers took a hold of and made their own.
We also had some very special guests and friends from the community like: Sign Language Class with one of our past staffers who is deaf, Horses from the therapeutic riding center just down the road, and our local meteorologist Steve Prinzivalli who came and shared about storms and bad weather. We also had a surprise visit from Samantha Hensell (from the local tv station) who brought a camera and did a story on Day Camp. Needless to say it was exciting to have such a great outreach into the community through the media. Oh yeah, the campers also went nuts over the fact that they were going to be on TV.
Most of all though, we are praising God for a fruitful week of ministry. Through God's grace we were a part of one young camper's decision to receive Jesus as his Savior. What a celebration to see God's love and mercy take away darkness and usher light into a life. Please join us in praising God for the great things that only He can do.

Special Olympics at Arrowhead
Construction of our new Bocce Ball courts is underway. At the tail end of this week we are going to be putting up two Bocce Ball courts. The courts will have two purposes. The first is the addition of a new program element for Shepherds Camp. The second is preparation for a Bocce Ball Tournament that we will be hosting for the Southern Tier Special Olympics. That's right, the Special Olympics are coming to Shepherds Camp! We are very excited and thankful for God's leading as He continues to give us success in meeting our goal of reaching out to our local community. What a blessing to be able to invest in the lives of our neighbors and friends.

Oh Baby?
We're heading into turn three. It is the proverbial Thursday of summer. We have less days left and more days done. Even though things are going to get busier there is the anticipation of "the best is yet to come." We have four weeks of Shepherds Camp ahead of us. We also have a baby coming VERY soon. Don't forget the Spiedie Fest and the Bocce Ball Tournament...and those are just the things we are expecting.
Stay Tuned, we will keep you up-to-date.

Saturday, June 23, 2007


Ready or Not...Summer is Here:
After a week of Staff Training our first group of the summer has
arrived here at camp; an inner city ministry from Washington D.C. The leaders have a clear passion and vision for the youth in their community and they have been thoroughly enjoying their time at Arrowhead. Their program is focused on the spiritual formation of students in the face of the cultural influences of media. Beside the normal camp stuff like tons of good food, swimming in the lake, foosball, and basketball in the gym; they have program activities revolving around the media. The group leader wrote two plays which the campers are practicing and will perform tonight for the whole group. All of the campers have broken into groups which have been spending time creating inspirational films for their peers. Their films will be shown tonight after the plays. They have been a pleasure to serve and a joy to partner with. It is exciting to see believers who understand their community and are seeking to meet their actual needs. The interesting thing about it is that even though this group and camp are very different...we are like-minded and our passion is much the same.

hepherds Camp is Just Around the Corner:
Sunnnnday! Sunnnnday! Sunnnnday! (for those of you who know the Buck Arena down in Harrisburg)
Shepherds Camp begins on Sunday with our first two-week program. You can't get any more excited than this. We passed last year's numbers a few weeks ago AND we have over 35 new campers! With a total of six weeks of programming we have closed the first two programs. We are praising God and watching the third program increase. Just the other day I was talking with the mother of one of our campers. She said her son David already had his bags packed and they were sitting by the door. What an amazing IMPACT camp has the lives of so many individuals in our community...who otherwise wouldn't hear the good news of Jesus Christ. Let me again encourage you, thank you, and implore you to join us - by praying for Shepherds Camp and by praising God for all the amazing things He is doing the lives of the developmentally disabled.

What's New at Camp:
This year's newest and hottes
t activity is down at the lake. We have replaced our diving board with a two-tiered jump tower. That's right! Looming tall above the dock, campers soar through the air screaming with joy as they plummet to the water below. The new jump tower is a very exhilarating method for getting wet and cooling down in the summer heat. Of course you can try it when you come to visit.

Baby Report: It has been two years since I started writing this "camp correspondence" which has come to you in several different formats and frequencies. Remembering back I think one of the primary reasons for starting News from Arrowhead was the Baby Report. Well, here we are again. We officially have 43 days left until our second little girl is due to arrive. That's only six weeks away. Kelly and I are feeling the days count down and waiting has lost its luster. We are both ready for her arrival. The sooner the better I say. We will definitely keep you updated.

GoodSearch Update:

We just passed 10,000 searches for Arrowhead. Just by using GoodSearch as your search engine, GoodSearch will be donating over $100 to camp. That's not too bad - $100 in seven months. Thanks to everyone who has been GoodSearching for Arrowhead.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Never a Dull Moment

This past month we have definitely enjoyed the warm (sometimes HOT) weather. Natalie absolutely loves being outside. Some of her favorite activities include: kicking her soccer ball on the blacktop, throwing the Frisbee (which she can throw perfectly about 15 feet...but you never know which direction), riding one of her cars, tricycles, or wagon and SWIMMING in the lake. Last week we jumped in the shallow end together as a family. Natalie was jumping around, laughing, splashing, and kicking. She was all over the deep end running back and forth from me to Kelly. The water was certainly chilly, but refreshingly fun. In the past few weeks we have been blessed to have many family and friends come up to camp to visit. In fact, we've had visitors the past three weeks. The weather has been great and nothing beats sharing the ministry of camp with loved ones. Natalie loves having guests at our house. On the weekend the Grandma and Grandpa were visiting...Natalie (feeling a little spoiled) got carried away with licking the chocolate-beaters. We were standing in the kitchen talking and in just a few short seconds I turned around to see Natalie attacking an empty bowl. When she came up for air she just smiled with wide eyes and dove back in, licking the inside of the bowl clean.

We're Having a Picnic
This past Saturday we had our 3rd Annual FREE Picnic. In the past it has been a great source of exposure, hospitality to the community, and a great way to build relationships...and this year was no different. We had about 85 people in attendance for a very beautiful and sunny afternoon. Everyone had their fill of Hamburgers, hot dogs, cole-slaw, seedless watermelon, and few other fixings. Then families and friends scoured the camp playing table games inside, basketball outside, swimming at the lake, and even a hayride.
This year we were blessed to have a large number of our campers and their care-providers at the picnic. We also met several families from the area who came to see to the camp. It was a great turnout for a great day.

Summer is Coming Soon

Well, if you didn't's June. Summer is definitely here. Our Staff Training starts in just two weeks. Then begins a jammed packed summer of Loving & Serving at camp. In the meantime we've got a big wedding back home in the Hanover area. Then we'll be hurrying back to put the final touches on camp and working with some of the leadership staff.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Soul Thirst & Sabbath

This past weekend I had the pleasure and privilege of going on a weekend retreat with about 10 other guys from the Lancaster, PA area. The retreat was hosted by Lancaster Bible College (LBC) and lead by my mentor and best friend who is now a professor at LBC. This was the third installment of "Soul Thirst", a weekend retreat for student ministry leaders. Each retreat focuses on a specific spiritual discipline, through discussion and experience. On this Soul Thirst we looked at the discipline of Sabbath or rest.

I was very excited for this retreat, especially because the summer is fast approaching. I was praying that God would use it as a weekend of preparation for the summer, which He certainly did. Entering the weekend I actually felt rested. This past year has been a good one for me. I haven't been burned out by work and ministry. My plate isn't SO full that I'm going crazy while getting nothing done. I've also spent good time with my family after working during the day and on the weekends. I'm very thankful for the rest that I have had in this full time ministry.

As we drove from LBC to the retreat cabin I was excited to think that for once I was going to go on a retreat where I wasn't going to be completely convicted two minutes after it began. On the other hand, I was very eager to explore and experience the discipline of Sabbath AND to learn how God wanted me to change my life to be more like Jesus in that area.

We had a great weekend with beautiful weather. The whole retreat was designed for us to be challenged with God's Word concerning the Sabbath AND to experience times of Sabbath within the retreat weekend. I must say that disciplining yourself to rest is much easier than disciplining yourself in Fasting or Solitude & Silence. I found myself to be rested as I predicted. My body physically didn't need to nap during the day so I was able to spend a good amount of time reading, praying, journaling, and eating. I also enjoyed meeting a bunch of new guys from the Lancaster area and seeing some guys that I knew from previous Soul Thirst retreats.

Through the Soul Thirst retreat God brought to light something about the rest I have been getting. Yes, I've been getting good rest. Yes, I'm not burned out by the ministry. Yes, I'm taking care of my first priority - my wife and kids. BUT, when I was resting I wasn't always resting in Him. The purpose and the effectiveness of Sabbath is - that God is the One we are to rest in. Sure we can rest by taking a nap or reading a book or some other pleasurable activity, but those things should not be where we run to for rest. The key behind Sabbath is asking God to show you what things in your life need to you can rest, and what things need to be added so you can rest and find delight. The Sabbath is characterized by a lack of work and the presence of delight. In Genesis, God created the world in six days. Then on the seventh day He declared that creation was complete and He said, "It is good." God also gave us the commandment to observe the Sabbath - a time to cease working and delight in what is good.

I had a great weekend and I definitely grew closer to God through His Word and experiencing the discipline of Sabbath.

Lions and Tigers and Bears...Oh My!

Last week Kelly and I were up late cooking food for a retreat I went on this past weekend. Actually, it was more like I was helping Kelly cook. Anyway, it was late at night when we finally finished cooking. I grabbed a few bags of trash that we had made and headed outside. I hopped on the golf cart (which was still outside from earlier in the evening) and drove to the dumpster down at the maintenance area. I threw the trash in the dumpster and hopped back on the cart. Sitting on the cart for a moment I heard something on the other side of the fence behind me. I paused and listened carefully thinking I didn't really hear anything. Then I heard it again. It was a gentle noise, as if something was taking it's time, meandering along the other side of the fence. By that time I was definitely intrigued to see what it was going to be. The noise faded away...but came right back further down the fence on my left side. I was expecting to see a cat or a possum squeeze under the fence on its routine trip to the camp dumpster for a midnight snack. Then I thought..."What if it's something else? What if it's a raccoon or a dog or a raccoon with rabies." So I continued waiting, listening and watching the bottom of the fence just 15 feet away. After what seemed like an eternity I became impatient. "What was it?" Then I decided I had had enough. I was just going to drive the golf cart out around the corner and see what this thing was. As I moved my foot to the gas pedal, grabbed the steering wheel, and looked up...
I saw a massive dark shape slowly and quietly sneaking around the corner by the gas tanks. There was no question about it. It was a bear! As it came in plain view my eyes scanned from its back to its head. Oh yeah, it was a bear! Like any red-blooded American standing between a black bear and its evening meal (with barriers on either side)...I yelled, "Woah!" I know what you're thinking..."Ohhh, real manly." Well, it was a very deep, "Woah!"
Before I could blink the bear turned and ran. Immediately the thought entered my mind that I couldn't see this bear any more, I didn't know where it went or where it was, and to get home I was going to have to drive around that fence. So I hit the gas pedal, threw my hands up in the air, and starting growling and yelling. I rounded the corner by the fence and just caught a glimpse of the bear heading out around the trailer about 30 yards ahead. I could barely see it (no pun intended) which made me realize that I didn't have my flashlight on. So I continued down the road after this bear yelling, waving my hands in the air, while fumbling to turn my flashlight on and drive at the same time. In just a few short seconds I passed the trailer, scanning camp grounds rapidly...but it was gone. Maybe it ran straight for the woods behind the staff cabins or sprinted up towards the main building and down into the woods by the lake...I couldn't tell. With a slightly elevated pulse I turned around and drove back to the house eager to tell Kelly.
So there you have it. That's my bear story. It's been a while since I've seen a bear here in Brackney. I saw them all the time during my freshman year of college in Wisconsin. But, it has certainly been a good while since I've seen a bear or come that close to one by myself.
There are a few important things everyone should know about black bears:
1. They usually are more afraid of you than you are of them.
2. They will be more afraid of you if you look bigger then them. If you can - stand up straight, raise your hands, and yell.
3. Bears usually only attack when they feel threatened. For example: If they are cornered, or if you are in between a mother and her cub(s).
4. Bears can run faster than horses in a 1/4 mile sprint. So if a bear does charge you...don't just run away. Run to the nearest building and get inside.
5. Being in a group of people is usually the safest situation. If a bear charges you and your friends, the only thing you have to worry about is whether or not you are the slowest runner in the group.
6. These helpful hints only apply to black bears. If you encounter a brown bear, kodiak, grizzly, or polar bear...say your prayers and get into the fetal position.

Thanks for reading. Tell me about your bear story. Click on the word "comment" in the white box below.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

They Grow Up So Fast...

Natalie is now officially using a "Big Girl Bed." Oh my! Today it's a big girl bed and tomorrow it's off to college. Well, at least that's what everybody tells. Let's look on the bright side though. When Natalie goes off to college, we will have served 21 years at Arrowhead. That's a whole lot of summer camps, winter retreats, work groups, and staff trainings.

I think we'll just focus on this summer...and take them one at a time.

Sunday afternoon we took Natalie's crib apart and converted it to a big girl bed. When it was all said and done Natalie was ecstatic. When we asked her about her new big girl bed (talking it up to get her used to the idea) she would yell and jump around...and then tear off running through the house to her bedroom to throw herself on her new bed.
So far things have been going pretty well. The first night she got up several times until we explained that she needed to choose to stay in bed or she would choose a consequence. Since then she only gets up once or twice before she really should.

Reality is setting in that Natalie is most certainly - growing up.

Monday, April 16, 2007


Family Update:
Here are some pictures from Easter. Natalie, Kelly, and I (and the baby) traveled down to southern PA for the weekend.

Winter Storm BLASTS the Northeast!

As you can imagine, I'm getting pretty sick and tired of writing about snow. It's April 16th for crying out loud. Actually, I don't mind the snow at all. I would choose cold & snowy over hot & buggy any day. The only thing I'm not so crazy about is sideways snow. Sideways snow is down right nasty. I know what you're thinking, "Just keep your back to the wind." Yeah, well...easier said than done. One false turn and you've got a face full of blustery ice crystals. Sometimes you run into a situation where you have to shovel a path and you just can't get your back to the wind. See what I mean.

To any extent, we got a bit of snow overnight and it's still coming down. [We are thankful that the power hasn't gone out] I'd say we're at 10" or so.

The commute to work this morning was a bear. The traffic was bumper-to-bumper.

For those of you who don't like snow...just relax and have some fun.

Friday, April 6, 2007


Snow? "Hey, wasn't that a paragraph heading in a previous Blog posting?" That's right, the white is back. Temperatures here at camp have plummeted in the past week...causing it to snow the last two days. I didn't think the weather man knew what he was talking about until I woke up Thursday morning and saw the ground covered in a white fluffy spring snow. It almost confuses you enough to say, "Merry Christmas" instead of "Happy Easter."

Check it out:
Here's something for all you moms and dads.

Nature/Technology: Africam - click on the "Nkorho Stream" (below the "home" tab)
Live streaming video from Africa. Guaranteed to supply your family (or just your kids) with countless hours of fun (automatic babysitting). I'm just kidding. Actually it makes for a fun activity several times throughout the day. Natalie likes checking the computer to see if Africam shows any wildlife. Even if it doesn't, you can hear live audio. Note: Night time is great...because birds and insects are flying to the watering hole which shows up great on the night-vision camera.

Wish List Need
In the past year or two we have seen a good growth rate in new campers for Shepherds Camp. As the number of new campers rises we find our need for new/more office equipment rising as well. One of those needed items has been on our wish list for the past year. A document scanner would be a very helpful and efficient addition to our camp office. It would alleviate the stress and time we spend copying information, faxing information, and discussing information between full time staff (and our camp records).
I'm asking you to prayerfully consider making an investment to the camp for the purchase of a document scanner. If you have any questions, please give me a call or shoot me an email., 570.663.2419

Friday, March 30, 2007

Count Down


101 days until Day Camp at Arrowhead

Check It Out

Here are a few things I came across in the past few weeks.

Culture: Film & Theology Night - Talladega Nights
Here is a great sermon that talks about the movie Talladega Nights. Many of you have either seen this movie, heard about the movie, or have friends, family, and co-workers who have seen the movie. Maybe your kids have seen this movie...or they want to. Check it out, it's an excellent way of understanding & engaging your community and culture.

Music: Peace - in the search box (top right) type "peace".
The song was written by a worship band from a church out on the west coast.

Just for Fun: Enter to Win

Things are Never Dull at Camp

Last weekend was our Shepherds Spring Retreat! We had a great time with our friends who come to camp in the summer and live close enough to attend our weekend retreat. Despite an extreme delay in receiving the registration forms, [we thought we were going to have to cancel the retreat] we had 30 campers with us over the weekend. We also had a lot of staff serving throughout the weekend too. With service staff in the kitchen, counselors, program staff, co-counselors, and volunteers - we had a total of about 25 staff. Wow, what a weekend!

Two of our campers playing bumper pool during some free time. Another one of our campers proudly displaying his Arrowhead visor.


Let's not forget the snow. Just a week ago there was still white stuff on the ground up here. It took some time, but the snow has finally melted away. Working outside has been a blast with all the warm I'm sure you would all agree.

Family Update:
Things are hopping on the home front as well. Did you catch that subtle Easter pun/joke...Your welcome. Natalie is showing great improvement in her speech and motor skills. She's also trying more and more to act and sound just like Kelly and I. One of her newest activities is to grab a book, head down the hallway to a little stool she has. This usually occurs when Kelly is on the phone or cooking dinner. Natalie sits down on her stool, opens up her book, and begins to read. It's mainly incoherent rambling...but man is it adorable.
Natalie also loves to pray. Our normal evening routine is: read a book, drink milk, brush teeth, get pajamas on, pray as a family, and then go to bed. Holding Natalie I sit down in the rocking chair in her room. We all fold our hands, after Natalie motions for Mommy to come closer and kneel down. We spend time praising God, thanking Him for the day we had, and praying for our family by name. Well, the other day Kelly was in the kitchen and she heard Natalie talking from her room. Kelly peeked her head in the room and saw Natalie sitting on the rocking chair with her hands folded praying. And get this...she was saying our names, "Daddy, Mama, Natalie, and baby. Oh man! If that doesn't make you tear up a little...there's something wrong with you. Side note: it's okay for guys to cry on two occasions only. First, if you get shot more than once. Second, when your children are obedient and follow God.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Welcome to Spring

Welcome to spring everyone!

With that last snow storm we got somewhere around 16". I was already starting to go into "warm weather" mode. What a crazy way to end the winter season. Not to worry though, this weekend is suppose to bring temperatures in the high 50's. We'll see what happens.

Our Shepherds Spring Retreat is coming up this weekend. Please keep us in prayer as we "love and serve" our friends from the local area.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007


The Baby Report
Well folks...we've got a very healthy baby girl on the way! Kelly had a doctor's appointment last week which included an ultrasound. It was no less astonishing than the first ultrasound I saw two years ago. I remembered a lot of details and signs to look for, but I was still blown away by all the things the doctor could see just from a little black and white fuzzy screen that never stayed still. Praise God for the report of a very healthy baby girl.
[Side note: check out baby name books. Many of them advertise on the front cover how great they are because of the vast number of names within. Sadly enough I've come to realize that quite a large number of the names in these books...are girly-guy names (or vise versa). Girly-guy names are boy's names with an "a" thrown onto the end. This creates two problems in my mind. The first is that I'm now forced to read these names which adds a lot time to my search for the perfect name for my daughter. The second is the realization that some parents are choosing girly-guy names because deep down they really wanted a boy but had a girl instead. Now, don't get me wrong. There are plenty of good and acceptable girl's names which just happen to end in an "a", and that's fine. I'm talking about names like - Berta, Stevea, Grega, Tonya, or Andya. Then there is my personal favorite, Sylvestra...the girly-guy name for Sylvester (It really is in the book).]

Natalie's World
Someone has been growing like a weed. Natalie is starting to open doors, walk up stairs without using her hands, and have conversations with people. Well, the conversations are a little mumbled, but she talks to you for about 20 seconds straight and then looks directly at you for a response.
Her vocabulary is getting bigger and better every day. I'm also amazed at her memory skills. She seems to remember how to do everything after the first time. She also remembers where things are located even if she hasn't been in a certain room or house in weeks.
Here's what makes being a Dad great. In the morning when I put my coat on she nods her head and says, "Work." Then I ask her where Daddy works and she responds with a smile, "Camp." She also runs to give me a hug when I get home from work. Nothing beats the hug. Natalie also enjoys praying. Each night before bed Natalie, Mommy, and I sit in her room talking about our day and then we pray before she goes to sleep. I love the simple joy it is to hold her in my arms as she folds her hands together and looks at me to begin our time of prayer.