Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day and last day in Branson

Regarding Memorial Day, I’m going to borrow a page from a fellow-blogger because I couldn’t have said it better.  Lavonda, author of My Dashing and Bold Adventure says:

“If you went to church at the church of your choice yesterday, you are blessed.
If you went to bed last night without concern or fear that your sleep would be disturbed by bomb blasts or foreign invaders, you are blessed.
If you woke this morning with the security and the  peace of knowing that you can travel about the country if you choose, or sit at home if you choose, or work hard if you are blessed…. (
read more)

We have had so many special “treats” this weekend and seeing Jen and Mark was the icing on the cake.  We met the Rutz’s our second summer in Branson in 2008.  What a special couple with a tremendous story.  I will just say that they are a couple who has had a vision from the Lord and they have stayed the course and waited for the Lord to work out His plan in their life.  What an inspiration they are.  Currently, Jen is the assistant activity director at Treasure Lakes RV Park and Mark is a crew member of the Branson Belle Showboat.  They have two sons with them and Jen is homeschooling them.   Here they are at Bob Evan’s for breakfast with Don and I and Dennis and Sally.  Our time with them went too quickly.100_1851

Obviously, we’re now headed west on 76 and now I get the front view of King Kong.  This huge display is part of the wax museum.  Very impressive.100_1854

We spent the afternoon with Dennis and Sally.  I can’t express adequately how encouraging it is to spend time with this couple who love the Lord so much and are like-minded in their vision for CRM and God’s mission for us. 

I, also, had a good time taking pictures of birds out their windows.100_1858

This feed bag is hanging on the window that had a screen on it, and I could never get a sharp picture of these beautiful wrens.100_1877

At 5:30 we went back to Joel and Linda’s for dinner.  Here’s Linda and I serving up angel food cake with a chocolate mousse-type sauce.  Deeelish!100_1893

Bless their hearts, they worked today and we wanted to take them out, but they wanted to fix dinner for us and we had such a good time.

“He will once again fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.” - Job 8:21

Laughter is good for the soul and we sure laughed a lot tonight.2010 May 31 Branson-1We have been refreshed this weekend with these beautiful friends and others we’ve spent time with.  Thank you Joel and Linda, for a wonderful evening.  We love y’all so much.

True satisfaction is making Jesus Christ, Lord of everything in my life.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Sunday is here! – in Branson

This morning, we went to KOA Campground for church.  It was like going home.  Pat Tomme (in red) saw us almost immediately when we walked in and Kathy brought Don his usual sausage gravy and biscuits, except he usually had that on Friday mornings when we were here.

Mike Wilson is not the chaplain at KOA.  We met him, Camie and their kids when we first got to Branson back in 2007 and Mike lead the music for us at KOA and Oak Grove.  Now he is a chaplain with CRM and doing a terrific job.100_1817100_1819

Bobby and Pat Tomme are talking to Don.  They have been workampers here every season for four or five years, maybe longer.100_1820

Mike very effectively uses power point during his message.100_1821

From church at KOA, we met Dennis and Sally out at The Carpenter’s House to look at the facility that is for sale.  CRM is waiting on the Lord to see if this is the property He has for us as our headquarters.  This fellowship hall would serve as a very adequate conference/class room for the CRM Chaplain U. 100_1834

The stage/pulpit area.  Baptistery on the right.100_1839

Precious Jade plays and sings a song she wrote, “You Are God.”  And next, she played “Walking With Jesus,” also, a song she wrote recently.100_1844

Dennis explains the property boundaries to Don.100_1846

The Carpenter’s House Pastor Terry Landsdale and wife, Marta.100_1847

A full view.100_1848

This afternoon, sweet friend Yvonne Rominger returned my call and I found out where they were parked and we drove over for a visit.  We also met Yvonne and Dan our first summer in the RV ministry.  She was thrilled that my camera battery was not charged. 

From Yvonne, we found out that Anna was working tonight, so we drove over to the store where she is working and she was so surprised to see us.  This was the first time we’ve seen Anna since her husband, Barry, passed away in January, 2009.  Barry was so much help to us our first summer and we miss him, but we know we will see him again.  Praise the Lord.

That was our Sunday in Branson.


It is the
not the preacher,
who has given us freedom of religion. 
It is 
not the reporter, 
who has given us freedom of the press.
It is 
not the poet, 
who has given us freedom of speech.
It is 
not the campus organizer, 
who has given us freedom to assemble. 
It is 
not the lawyer, 
who has given us the right to a fair trial. 
It is 
not the politician, 
Who has given us the right to vote. 

It is the

salutes the Flag, 

It is 
who serves 
under the Flag,

We can be very 
proud of our young men and women in the service no matter where they serve. 

Bless them all!!!

THANK YOU to those who have served and sacrificed.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Saturday in Branson

We got a good night’s rest and Don feels, maybe, a little better after taking an antibiotic last night.  We headed down to the “free” breakfast in the hotel and we forgot…. this is Branson!…. live entertainment at breakfast.  Now, I’m a poor blogger this weekend and I didn’t get the name of this duet, but they were pretty good.100_1763

I did hear them say that this one is Loretta Lynn’s nephew.100_1764

Next on our agenda was to go find Joel and Linda.  We know the park where they are but not their site.  We wanted to surprise them.

On the way, we were behind this.  That’s one fancy bike with fender skirts, chain guard and even a “hood ornament.”100_1771

We found them!  They were in a cabin, cleaning, and we just drove up and they were very surprised!  Mission accomplished.  I love being surprised and I love surprising.  It was wonderful to see, Joel and Linda again.  For a little history, we met this sweet couple while we were serving as chaplains to the workampers in Coffeyville, Kansas, fall 2008.  Joel helped me lead the music for our worship services each Sunday morning.  Now we are forever friends.100_1774

After making plans for dinner with Joel and Linda, we left them to get back to work and headed over to Oak Grove RV park to see if Yvonne and Dan were there.  They weren’t, but we did find this nice surprise.  When were were there summers 2007 and 2008, this building had no walls.  It was an open pavilion where we held church each Sunday.  Also, the deck has been added.100_1777

Isn’t this nice?  A perfect place to have church, Bible study, pot lucks, games, jams… you get the idea.100_1775

Next, we went to see Dennis and Sally to brain storm some more about CRM things and just fellowship and marvel at what God is doing.

They have some really pretty flowers that Sally transports everywhere they go.  They love their flowers and birds.100_1779100_1783

This vintage looking motorhome was parked behind the Maloney's.  Do you think they might be Arkansas Razorback fans?  On the back it says, “Fear the Tusk.”100_1790100_1793 100_1796

On our way back to the hotel for a rest, I happened to look east on 76 as we crossed and that sure looks like a giant gorilla hanging on a building to me.  We will have to check it out… wasn’t there the last time we were here.100_1806

We took Joel and Linda over to The Falls for dinner.  You can read Joel’s post about it and see his pictures >>>here<<<100_1810

This somber cowboy stared at me the whole time I was eating dinner.  It was a little disconcerting, but only a little.  He didn’t stop me from enjoying my meal or my companions.100_1809

Back at Joel and Linda’s we played the “stupid game”… Zilch.  Also, made a date for Monday night.  Linda insisted on making dinner for us so we are looking forward to that.

What a great day we’ve had with friends. We are so blessed.   

Friday, May 28, 2010

Tulsa to Branson

It’s travel time, but before we get on the road, I have to tell you that Logan came down stairs this morning with a very long face.  Don asked him, “Why the long, sad face?” To which Logan replied, “My tooth is still under my pillow.”  Uh oh.  That Tooth Fairy must have been really busy last night and ran out of “dust  dough” or something horrible must have happened to him, like he was so tired he stopped for a napped and just never woke up.  So, Don asked Logan how much he thought the tooth fairy would have left if he had showed up and Logan said, “$3.00.”  Would you believe that all Don had in his pocket was $3?  Three dollars made Logan feel a little better.  But you can just guess who feels like a real heel now.  I had to give him a hard time by texting him this morning… “Way to go, Tooth Fairy!”  He’s sure he’s going to lose his fairy wings, but he assured me he would make it up to Logan.  What parent hasn’t experienced this?  We sure love a good opportunity to give his dad a hard time, though…. all in fun and love.

OK, on the road again… without the Q as we will only be gone four days.

We decided to take the 412 instead of going Interstate 44.100_1724

The scenery is just beautiful in eastern Oklahoma and western Arkansas.100_1728

Did you know that millions of chickens are raised in Arkansas?100_1729

Somewhere along the way, I received a phone call from daughter, Leslie, with a funny story about granddaughter Emma.  As told to Leslie by Emma’s kindergarten teacher, it went something like this:

Teacher to Emma’s table:  “Students, I know it’s the end of school and all, but you are really misbehaving today.  Why are you behaving this way?”

Emma, always feeling the need to find an answer for any question posed to her, made her way to the teacher’s desk a few minutes later, placed her elbows on the desk with her face in her hands and said (I imagine after a heavy sigh), “I’ve given it a lot of thought and I have come to the conclusion that the reason we are misbehaving is because we have just outgrown you and are ready to be in first grade.”

Teacher told Leslie that it was all she could do to keep from bursting out with a laugh, especially considering the serious look on Emma’s face.  She assured Leslie that she certainly was going to miss Emma in her class.  We’re all hoping it’s in a good way… we’re sure it is.

Are you kidding me?  “I’ve come to the conclusion”…. six years old.  You can just imagine that Don and I certainly enjoyed that story and I’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of it this weekend.  Aren’t children wonderful?

Ok, more going-down-the-road pictures.

Almost missed this old brick building.100_1731

The view from about two miles away.  It’s very humid and hazy today, but this hillside was so pretty from the highway.100_1733

Freshly harvested hay meadow and hay barn.  Love it.100_1734

And I turned my head just in time to see this church ahead of us.  It’s a Methodist church, but I can’t read the sign.100_1735

I wonder what happened to that fence?  Keep in mind that I am taking these pictures with a zoom and we’re traveling about 65 – 70 mph.100_1738

Really, what is our fascination with antique cars?  This one goes back a little further than our early driving years, but Don said he had this model when he first was driving.  They remind us a life that now we wish we had.. a time when we lived a little slower and had time to enjoy family and friends and we said grace at our meals (we still do) and more people went to church than didn’t.  This car reminds me of a time when most folks weren’t ashamed of God because they knew their blessings and freedoms were a gift from Him and were grateful.  Maybe I romanticize, but I don’t think so.100_1742

Call me crazy, I just like it… the contour of the highway, the traffic, the opposing yellow lines of the turn lanes, the shadow of the mountain, the rocks jutting out on the sides of the highway.100_1744

We made it to Branson, thank You, Jesus.  Got checked in to our hotel.  (Don found a great deal online.)100_1753

And then Dennis and Sally took us out to dinner over in Kimberling City.100_1762

The view of Table Rock Lake from our table.100_1758100_1759

Dennis had so much exciting things to tell us.  Maybe soon, I will be able to share some of it with you.  Please pray for wisdom for CRM International and praise God for what He’s doing.  May His perfect will be done.  It is exciting.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Tooth Fairy Alert

Logan worked and worked all afternoon and finally was successful at pulling his tooth today!  He’s so all boy.  He never even flinched.  I did.100_1693

This afternoon, we got to watch a little of Taylor’s football scrimmage before going to Logan’s baseball game.  Taylor is number 33.  He plays the safety position and the running back position.  That’s artificial grass they are playing on.100_1694

Logan got on base several times tonight.  I forgot to tell you that when he hit his in-the-park-homerun last night, when he got back to the dug-out he hollered at Stephanie, “Hey, Mom, how’d you like them apples?!”  He’ll work on his grammar later, but for now, it’s all about “them apples!”100_1706

Another beautiful sunset in Oklahoma.100_1708


The Lord is good to those who wait for Him,
To the soul who seeks Him.
It is good that one should hope and wait quietly
For the salvation of the Lord. (Lamentations 3:25-26)

Word Art at Stephanie’s

I love the word art so much in Stephanie’s home, I decided to dedicate a blog post to it.

Over the computer center.100_1541

In the entrance.100_1552

From a different angle.100_1520

Stephanie is very creative in the home decorating department.  She made these Wooden Word Blocks: cut, routered, painted, distressed, and embellished.  She will custom make them for YOU.  Just email me at [lavon7_99 at yahoo dot com] and I will Hook You Up!  They are so cool.

On the chest in the entrance.100_1566

On the mantle in the family room.100_1683

In the breakfast nook.100_1500-1

On the bar in the kitchen.100_1682

On the wall going up/down the stairs.100_1540

In the formal dining room.100_1536

In the entrance to the master bedroom.  Steph made this!100_1685

Word art is a wonderful way to affirm the marriage.100_1523100_1524100_1528100_1526

And a wonderful way to affirm their faith with scripture art.100_1525In the master bath.  Tremendous daily reminders.100_1527100_1530

In the hall.100_1533

In Stephanie’s office/work room.100_1539

In the family room.100_1546100_1547

Over the door going out to the patio.100_1550

In the kitchen.100_1551

This word art plaque is about four feet tall and it’s in the hall, so I didn’t have room to get it all in one frame.  Took three pictures and put them together.  It actually does not taper at the bottom.  The last two words are meekness and temperance.Collages2-2

In the play/theater room upstairs.100_1559100_1560100_1562

So much affirmation in the home is sure to have a positive effect on the family.

Well, that was fun and kept me entertained for almost a whole day!  Hope you enjoyed it, too.