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   Seen on a church billboard while driving home:  "Nobody needs a vacation more than the one that just had one."  I know its not a new quote, but it made me laugh when I saw it while driving through Montana someplace.

Vacation is a wonderful thing.  You leave finally after months of planning and arranging things so you can be gone for two weeks.  And still you have to have faith, trust, and hope that the people back home can do your job and that you've paid your bills and that there will be enough money left when you get back to pay the bills.  Sounds like a great tone in which to start things. No?  But, because it was vacation, we did leave it all behind and felt at least a small portion of carefree and irresponsible.

We drove hard and long the first afternoon, all night, and most of the next day and then stopped in Iowa for an early long night. Wonderful, wonderful rest after going hard.  The next day was an easy drive to arrive in Elida, Ohio in time to go to Kewpees with Bruce' family.  Kewpees is an original with Lima, Oh and sometime you should google it.  It is an old hamburger joint with a naked doll for an icon.  The grandchildren of Grandma June were properly horrified. 

Driving through Lima, I was hit with memories of our newly married life 18 years ago.  Bruce and I lived in Elida the first three years of marriage while he worked in a cabinet shop in downtown Lima.  Most weekends we ate out at the Red Lobster across town or the classy restaurant on top of an old department store, called Lazerus, in the mall after which we would stroll the mall young and in love. We mini golfed and walked the reservoir.  We went to the Dayton Air Force Museum and The Columbus Imax.  We stayed at nearby motels and a bed and breakfast one time. Lima is one place that has hardly changed.  There are still no Starbucks or coffee shops in that beautiful town.  How can this be? 

In Lima, we stayed in Wayne and Carol Schwartz home. They are our third set of parents and mentors.  With them, we are encouraged and nudged on to the next thing life gives us.  But its more.  They make us feel that we also encourage them and that we are not a burden.  We are accepted and loved and so are they. 

The purpose of our vacation was family reunions and Bruce's grandpa's 80th birthday party.  It was such fun to reconnect with the cousins and aunts and uncles.  It was very interesting to see our own children get to know their second cousins.  Grandpa Good was choked up when he prayed before the main meal of the day so I didn't hear everything he said but before prayer, he thanked us all for coming and that it meant a lot to him that we did come and that he wants to see us all in glory.  It hit me that this is the hearts cry to all of us who are struggling through life as we strive to make it to our goal and final rest. How much more so for a man that is turning 80 and has seen all the family history to that point.

On Sunday, we went to Eastern Ohio to spend the night with my sister Evie and her family.  They have a bunch of beautiful children and we had a wonderful time of getting to know them better; a very worthwhile stop.  I hugged each of those beautiful nieces and went to pieces with the longing and waiting of finally being able to do that.

The Dome... A place Matt and Beth Waldron took us.

The rest of the trip was made up of a visit to the Creation Museum with Bruce's family, a visit to Matt and Beth Waldron, and then we finished up with a dip down into Nebraska for two days with my sister Amy and her family.  There, we went to the zoo and had Shaunti's 9th brithday party. We were so ready to start home by Saturday even with Laife running fever and needing to make alot a stops at restrooms. The poor guy was sick for days with fever and aches but now seems on the mend. 
 Thank God for store bought birthday cakes...

It is good good good to be home.  Some new facts I brought home with me: Not everyone does facebook.
                  Driving east is NOT fun.
                  Driving west IS fun.
                  People are the worlds best benefits to a truly good life.  It's our differences that make it all so very interesting and worthwhile.


  1. You are an awfully beautiful family. I have some good pictures that I am going to blog about soon. Of when you were here. One of Shanti on the swing that you took. Come back soon!!!!

  2. Shilah 'Light, It seems that all the hard lessons and victories you have had previous to your visit here to us, was shining and finding a place to bless us. Thank you so much to you and Bruce for stopping in. It was a God-visit.

    1. Evie, indeed. twas a gift to my soul as well! Shilah


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