Thursday, June 29, 2006

Have Backpacks, Will Travel

Well, ready or not, the next chapter of my life is about to begin. Saturday is July 1st. It's the day that I will fly to London, and then to Glasgow. It is the month that I will turn 30, that I will start school, and a new job. Cha-cha-changes.

I feel like it's a fresh start. School was a terrible experience for me. Between my self-esteem and the battles between my mom and me, I have no good memories of it. OK, one. I got an "A" in Business Math. I had a great professor for that class and I think that's the only "A" in Math I had since elementary school. I'm a different person now, and I am ready for the challenge of school. Ready to learn and accomplish. It's really a good feeling.

What better place to kick off this new chapter than in Scotland? We're cutting our teeth on this trip, but ya know what? It's not our plans. It's His plans. And come what may on this trip, I believe our hearts are in the right place and that God will bless that. I'll probably be covered in paint by the time I'm through. Have enough British tea in me to host the 2nd Boston Tea Party, take too many pictures, but also have memories that will last a lifetime. God willing, we will impact lives for eternity. That I am able to go on this trip is such a God-thing. I'm excited and nervous and eager with anticipation.

Please pray for our team. For those doing evangelism and those doing construction (me!) and those doing a little of both. Please pray for safety, time-management, servant's hearts, friendships, and souls.

When I return, I will begin school the following day, and then start my new job the day after that. I really is a new chapter, alot of things happening at once. I really am excited. I also know that we don't know what tomorrow holds for us, and that THIS is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.

God bless you my blogger friends. I'll try to say "hi" to Nessie for you! Have a wonderful Fourth of July, and we'll talk again soon!

posted by Amstaff Mom | 5:06 AM | 16 comments

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Two Weddings and a Rodeo

After returning to camp, I attended a friend's wedding the next day. An outdoor wedding on Lake Ray Roberts. (or is it Ray Roberts Lake?). Anyways, aside from the storms that crept in when the reception started, it was a beautiful wedding, and we enjoyed the fellowship with our friends. I did forget my camera though, no pics.

This past Friday night, we were invited to attend the Mesquite Rodeo at Resistol Arena. Always a good time, but especially when you're hanging out with your camp buds in a box suite with unlimited BBQ. SCORE!

Cowboy Poker Anyone? Last one sitting gets the moola, AND the moo.

As Foghorn Leghorn used to sing, "Campdown races sing a"

The rodeo is right in front of us and they're watching it on tv!

Saturday, I attended another wedding and it was good to hang out with friends once again.
"Hi Beyonka Shaddai!"

posted by Amstaff Mom | 5:31 AM | 5 comments

Monday, June 26, 2006

Camp Photos, Part 3

Continuing with the Camping Theme....

Brian checks out the sunset. And our course, evidently.

Hiking on the mainland. This tree was ginormous. We actually had a trail here. Later,
we were walking in a creek bed. Complete with deer skeletons.

Brian had canoed over to the mainland, that's why his shirt is wet.

They climbed up wet shale to the top, while I stayed on Terra Firma.
There was a small waterfall here. Very neat!

Nothing but green!

Returning from the hike. I took a boat ride back, as I had to protect my camera
at all costs. There was a huge snapping turtle swimming near them.

posted by Amstaff Mom | 11:47 AM | 6 comments

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Showers of Blessing

Don't have the official call yet, but my current boss did tell me that I GOT THE JOB!!!! I will have 8 years of service with my company next month, and this job is going to be the perfect combination of my work history. It's so perfect! And, I get to TRAVEL! And it's a raise, and a promotion!

God is so very, very good. I don't deserve His blessing, but I am truly grateful and give Him all the glory. I don't deserve it. And I'm thankful.

Thank you for your prayers!!

posted by Amstaff Mom | 11:28 AM | 11 comments

More Camp Bliss

Continuing on with the camp photos...

This is the extent of civilization that I saw for two weeks. This is the dock, about 10 min. by boat but the closest store or building to us. Note all the cute birdhouses.

We rented a cabin for three hours to watch the first three Mavs games. This is on our way to the cabin where about 8 of us huddled around a 19" tv. Brian is a good boat driver. :) The island is directly behind us in the photo.

I have numerous photos of this face of the last 10 years. Man, I love this guy.

Group photo! The camp director's favorite color is orange. He even special ordered an orange ski boat. So, in honor of him, here we are. This is where we normally gather to watch the sunset.

I'm having a love/hate relationship with Blogger right now. I was just getting to my sunset and hiking pictures when it decided it didn't want to post any more photos. There will be a part 3 evidently!

posted by Amstaff Mom | 5:49 AM | 4 comments

Wednesday, June 21, 2006


Here are pictures from camp. See why I enjoy it so much??

Here's our home for two weeks! Note our "bathroom sink" strapped to a tree. Complete with Listerine, toothbrushes, paste, flashlight and a Nalgene full of water. Mirror strapped to side. Bathing products in tub on top. Yes, we bathe in the lake. No, I don't miss showers.

The southern tip of the island.

Brian signed up to wash dinner dishes every night as his daily chore. That water is hot!

The kitchen. Brian entertains the kids.

How I spent my day.....

Reading/Sleeping on a raft in the lake by day. At night, stare at stars.

Riding around in a boat watching guys ski on oars.

Ride on Wave Runner. Hey Josh! It's my turn!

Blast. Blogger stopped uploading pics on me again. Well, I'll post more later.

Btw - the interview went wonderfully yesterday. I really think I got the job! Will find out soon and will keep you posted. Thank you so much for your prayers!

posted by Amstaff Mom | 5:39 AM | 11 comments

Monday, June 19, 2006

Back to Life, Back to Reality

Whew! Yesterday was the first day to be sitting at my desk in THREE WEEKS! Wowza. After a week of training and two blessed, wonderful weeks of vacation, I am once again at my home away from home. Not that I can complain too much. My job blesses me with 29 days of vacation this year, in addition to many Friday's off, so I can't complain in the least. Even better than that, I have an interview for a new and better position this morning at 10am. Will you pray for me? I would LOVE to have this job. Really, it's a perfect fit, and it's sounding really promising. They waited for three weeks to interview me. Yea! So, please pray that I'll do my best during the interview.

Being at camp was SUCH a restful reprieve. Seriously. It's the most relaxing vacation I can imagine. It's beautiful. It's serene. It's active. It's relaxing. It's stress-free. It's climate-controlled (sorta). It's 24 hours a day with really good people. It's a place to get quiet. To enjoy sunsets either with your friends or by yourself. It's laying on an 8 person raft at 10:00 at night out on the lake with your friends as you watch satellites streak across the Big Dipper. It's having a hard time locating the Big Dipper, not because of the light pollution, but because there are millions, billions of other stars in the sky that you can see. So much that it's hard to even make out where the Big Dipper is in all the vastness. It's laying on lounge chairs next to the water with your female friends, everyone with a book in hand. It's falling asleep in a hammock with a good book. It's going to bed in June and being COLD. 55 degrees means snuggling in a sleeping bag and listening to the water splash against the shore 30 ft. from your tent.

It's seeing wild turkeys, salamanders, deer, turtles (the box and snapping kind), fish, bats, and snakes (yes, I LIKE snakes). It's clinging to my husband's life-jacket as we zoom on a jet-ski going 55mph, with a 13 year old boy holding on to my life-jacket yelling SWEET!!! as we glide across the water. It's soaking teenagers with the afroementioned Wave Runner. It's hiking in the forest and watching my husband climb a 40 foot "waterfall". It's swimming a mile and then stopping to do Ai Chi on the shore with 40 year old women, but laughing the whole time and getting algae on your arms from being in the water so long. It's cheering the Oldies (over 30 and/or married) as they beat the Goodies (under 25 young studs) in a volleyball match.

It's eating smores and pies around a campfire, and drinking raspberry tea and lemonade because the water tastes bad. It's sharing an outhouse with 30 people and learning that an empty can of raspberry tea filled with peat moss and dumped in the outhouse hole really will make the smell go away. It's singing Blessed Be the Name, Blind Man, and I've Got Peace Like a River (with motions) around a campfire. It's teaching teenagers how to play Wahoo and then watching 8 year olds play it when they're done. It's riding around in a ski boat while kids who have spent every summer of their life on the island show amazing skill at slaloming. They get bored with regular skiing so they barefoot, or ski on an oar.

It's bonding with people that I've known my whole life. I became close friends with the Sunday School teacher I had when I was 4. My first memories include her and now my recent ones do too. It's being blindfolded late at night and being inducted in the Ga-Ga Sisterhood, complete with secret ceremonies never to be discussed even on this blog. It's sharing your joys and sorrows with people of all ages.

So yes, reality is here again, but so are the memories of two weeks of a true vacation. And now - I get to eagerly anticipate my trip to Scotland next Saturday. God is Good.

P.S. Blogger is not cooperating on the pictures. I will post those later.

posted by Amstaff Mom | 6:57 PM | 6 comments