Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Just So You Know....

I cannot respond to any emails today, something has crashed on my computer and the mouse is missing.

(hat tip to Louise Crouse)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Happy Anniversary!!

Today is Byron's parent's 41st anniversary. Happy Anniversary to you!!! We love you!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Extra Travel Bonus!

On our way to Alaska, we had a 2.5 hour lay over in Salt Lake City Utah. My friend, Erica, met us at the airport then took us on a short tour of Salt lake City - which included a delightful supper of "Gyro's" - which I learned is pronounced - "GEE-RO". :-) Byron has a whole post with multiple pics about this little visit here.Anyways.... Here's a pic of Erica and me. We have been friends for 7-8 years now but this was the first time we've ever met face to face!! We correspond almost daily so it was a JOY to get to meet her in person.

In honor of our trip to Alaska

The following video was filmed in Anchorage Alaska on June 28 of this year. It would have been fun to see!! We did see one Mama moose and her baby but they were headed for Lowes!! LOL

Sunday, July 27, 2008

More on Alaska

Byron has a bunch of pictures up on his blog of Alaska if you are interested in more.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


Someone, who shall remain nameless, mentioned to his wife that in 2 hours there was going to be a parade about 10 minutes from our house. Well, the children of this nameless man suddenly had excellent hearing abilities and over-heard this discussion and of course, there was no talking them out of going to the parade. So, this very tired, jet lagged mommy got the children all ready and we went to the parade - without the aforementioned nameless man because he is very behind in his schoolwork from being gone for 10 days. It ended up being a very nice parade and the kids were thrilled. I managed to stay awake long enough to keep the children from being kidnapped and even snapped a couple cute pics.

Misc Alaska Pictures

I am not into scenic pictures. I just like people to be in my pictures. So, I've pretty much only posted people pics. So, lest you think we visited Alaska and didn't try to capture the awesome beauty of it - we really did. I just decided not to post all 1200 of them. :-) Here are a few more pics that I wanted to share.

Just to clarify... I was never nervous about going to Alaska. I was simply terrified that something would happen to us enroute and my children would be left orphans! I truly loved Alaska and had a wonderful time. So, perhaps the sticker should say, "I survived the plane ride!"

Warren & Carla took us to a chocolate place there in Anchorage. Oh, gracious. It was delightful!!!

Byron preached Sunday night at the church in the North Pole where Rev. Newton pastors. It is probably the most beautiful church I've ever seen.

Byron and I in Denali

Byron and I somewhere along the GlenAllen highway.

Byron & I up on a mountain overlooking the camp. You can see it below us.

Time With Friends

Tracey Miller so graciously opened her home to us while we were in the North Pole. We had allot of fun - the snake not withstanding. UGH. She didn't make me touch him though and was actually very kind about it!!! LOL And, just so you know... he (Bob, the snake) was in the basement and I wouldn't have had to go down there at all. Thanks for everything Tracey!!!

Cameron Hill trying out a bow and arrow set he had made.

Byron & Warren

Warren & Carla Hill were very gracious and loaned us their vehicle while we were up there. We flew into Anchorage where Warren picked us up at the airport then we left the next morning after grabbing a couple hours sleep and drove 8 hours to Dot Lake where the camp was. Then we drove back down to their house on Tuesday the next week. We then spent a couple days with them. We had such a nice time with them. It had been at least 8 yrs since we had seen them. They make great tour guides! Thanks for everything Warren & Carla! Carla has some pics up on her blog too.

Byron and his little buddy, Nicholas. Nicholas is a foster child of Warren and Carla's and hopefully in August will become legally theirs!

Jason & Tammy Dodson from KCCBS

Vonnie Bryan & I

Lisa (Coursin) McNutt and her little girl - whose name escapes me at the moment. Lisa's sister and I graduated together from IWS many moons ago.
We were so happy to be able to spend some time with Kevin and Peggy Taylor and Annalisa (who was at camp also) and their little guy, Zach. Unfortunately, however, we didn't get any pictures with Kevin and Peggy. Here is Zach...

We had a lovely evening with the Newtons. They fixed us a wonderful meal of roast moose and fried halibut. It was so delicious. We really enjoyed getting to know the Newtons.

More Camp Pics

Serving the kids.

Byron preaching.

Byron's one sermon was about temptation and traps the devil sets for us. Byron used real traps and the kids had to use spaghetti sticks to remove the coin that was in the trap without letting off the trap. It was hilarious.

One afternoon several of the men (and Alyssa Miller) went about 10 miles (one way) to see some scenery.

On Saturday of camp we discovered that we needed more cookies so it was decided that we'd make rice krispy treats. We didn't have the rice krispys or the marshmallows though and since we were "out in the bush" of Alaska, we couldn't simply run to the corner grocery store. So, due to a plumbing problem at the camp, Bro. Betters and one of the other men (his name totally slips my mind at the moment) were heading to Tok, about an hour away to get a tool that they needed. We asked them if they'd pick up the supplies we needed. When they got back they informed us that the store was out of rice krispys so shredded wheat would have to do. :-) They were teasing of course but lucky for them, we already had shredded wheat on hand so we made them up their own tasty treat of shredded wheat treats. We told them it was treat for the elderly.

Here there are enjoying their special treat!!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Time at Dot Lake Camp

Mountaintop view of the camp grounds.

Byron's study while at camp.

All the campers and helpers. It is very rare to see such a large group of such spiritually minded young people. These kids came to camp prayed up and ready to do business with God. God's presence was so intense and real in each of the services. It was so refreshing to see young people who are all out for God.

Yes, I was FREEZING the entire time I was there!!

My new friends! These ladies made me feel so welcome and needed. I so enjoyed working with them throughout the camp making food. I hated to say goodbye!

Welcome Home to Us!!

We made it back in one piece!! I have to say that this trip has been the focus of our lives for the last several months and now its over. Wow. I can't even really describe the emotions of that. We had a delightful time and took approx. 1500 pictures. In analyzing the trip, I came to the conclusion that in my mind, I have separated the last 10 days into two groups. Time at camp and time with friends. The next 2 blog entry's are divided as such.
Oh, and a couple observations:
1. Get to the airport early. Like 2 hours early. It makes for much less stress in traveling.
2. If you plan to depart from Anchorage airport - arrive THREE hours early. See part B of #1. Anchorage TSA employee's have one speed - INCREDIBLY slow.
3. Do not take your pet poodle on the flight as a carry on. It is intensely uncomfortable for the dog and even more so for your fellow passengers. Oh, and were you aware that a poodle can cry louder than an infant? (no, it wasn't our poodle)
3. If you plan to drive from Anchorage to Fairbanks/Dot Lake be sure to a. use the restroom, b. pack a lunch and c. plan for about 3 hours of extra time to stop and take pictures.
4. An Alaskan mile is TWICE as long a mile on "the outside".

1 Yr Anniversary

It's been one year! Wow how time flies. I've thoroughly enjoyed having this blog. Thank you everyone who reads and may or may not comment. I've been really surprised by how many people faithfully read but never comment. Blogging has blessed my life in so many ways. I've made several new friends through it as well!! For the very first blog entry click here.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Just Checking In!

We are leaving North Pole Alaska today and heading to Palmer Alaska where we will be until we fly out on Thursday. We have been having a wonderful time here and wish we had more time here in "the North Pole". We have been staying with our friend Tracey Miller and just having lots of fun. Last night we had supper at the Newton's house and enjoyed halibut and moose roast. HMMMMM.... delightful!!! We will have pictures and more trip report later!!!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Happy Birthday, Dad Gurnee!!

Today Dad Gurnee turns another year older. I'll refrain from any remarks so that he won't have to try to get back at me!!

Click to play Jim Gurnee's Birthday
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

We're HERE!!!

We arrived here at Anchorage airport at 12:15 AM Alaska time. We had 2 very uneventful flights - which is a GOOD thing!! LOL Our first flight left right on time and the 2nd flight was only about 10 min late in leaving. I was so surprised at how kind, courteous and pleasant all the employees at both airports were. No one was snippy or rude which I found surprising. I'll post pics and more commentary (LOL) later. We leave Anchorage this AM and head for Fairbanks in an hour.

Monday, July 14, 2008

We're Almost Ready!!

Well, tomorrow at this time we'll be enroute to Salt Lake City, Utah where we will have a brief layover before heading on to Alaska. To say that I am nervous would be an understatement. A drastic understatement. The suitcases are packed. The kids are dying to leave right now for Aunt Shandra's and "The Farm". They can't understand why we have to wait until tomorrow. My favorite in-law's came today and spent several hours helping us wrap things up and treated us to pizza and popsicles. Thanks Mom & Dad! Here is Mama and the kids playing Ladder ball.

French Fry's and Father in Law's

Many years ago - like 8 (approximately) my father in law (my favorite one) loaned me his truck to drive to work. I have no idea why I needed his truck but he was generous enough to loan it to me. At that time, I was staying at their house and driving to Pittsburgh each day while they kept Kenton and babysat him. So, anyways..... I would leave work at 5:00 and head for Meadville. Of course I was starved as you can imagine. Well, on one such day, I stopped and grabbed a sandwhich and french frys. And thus was the beginning of the end. Somewhere along the way.... I dropped a french fry in his truck and I've heard about this french fry now ever since. And then this week, he brings me this joke (click to make it bigger)......

Sunday, July 13, 2008

My Little Lady

Um... better make that .... My little Tomboy..... See Byron's blog for the whole story.

Saturday, July 12, 2008


The kids were invited (by our dear Mrs. Herl) to attend their V.B.S this week. Since we probably won't be having one of our own and since our children rarely get to have someone other than their parents teaching them - we sent them. The theme was, "The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything" from VeggieTales. The kids loved it and we really enjoyed the program and fellowship last night. Here are a few pictures.

Too many cookies? Too much V.B.S? Too much of something!!! :-)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Chocolate Update

Some of you may remember this post about my new favorite chocolate candy bar....... Well, this week I was doing some grocery shopping at Aldi's (what in the world would we do without Aldi's?). They had a whole stack of these for under 1.00. These brownie mixes are far over 2.00 normally in a regular grocery store. I think the reason Aldi's had these is because there is no expiration date ANYWHERE on the boxes. Anyways, I decided that stale Ghirardelli would probably still beat fresh Hershey's or Betty Crocker all to pieces so I purchased 4. Last night we had the first of the boxes. Oh goodness. Let me tell you. You aint ever had brownies until you've had Ghirardelli brownies. Honestly, these were definitely a cut above Betty Crocker. Actually make that about 10 cuts above Betty Crocker. No comparison. Anyways.... what a treat for this chocoholic!!!!

Thankful Thursday (a day late)

I'm a day late - and its been months since I did a "Thankful Thursday" post. I am truly still incredibly grateful to God for all His MANY blessings to me.

This week I am thankful for our friends and family. Yesterday (Thursday) I spent an incredible, much needed 3 hours with one of my very best friends. Unfortunately she lives many many hours away in Florida but was up here on vacation so we were able to share lunch together. She is such an encouragement to me and I am so thankful I was able to be with her yesterday.

Then last night our friends (and parishioners) Blaine & Dixie brought pizza and came over for the evening. We had such a nice time around the camp fire just visiting and fellowshipping.

And last, but not least, I'm thankful for my in-laws. Yesterday Byron's dad came and spent the day helping Byron around the church and house get some more much needed jobs done.

I am truly very very blessed.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Ontario Interdenominational Holiness Association Camp 2008

I plan to make a blog entry very soon sharing my thoughts and impressions about the camp. There's allot of them floating around in my head that are eager to be written out!! LOL In the meantime... here's some pictures.

Our theme was, "The Hunt for Truth - from Genesis to Revelation". Our daily themes were: The hunt for the truth about Creation and the Flood, the Hunt for the truth about God's Word (Inspired and Inerrent), the Hunt for the Truth about the flood, The Hunt for the Truth About Salvation, and The Hunt for the Truth about Purity. On the last day the kids went "Hunting" (with a toy bow and arrow set) for a big buck. It was lots of fun!!
Click to play OIHA Camp 2008
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