Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Spring Soccer

We had another great year watching the girls play soccer. Each year it is neat to see the growth of all the girls on the team.

Avery's team won the end of the season tournament. They defeated their rivals 2-1. Avery scored the first goal in the first two minutes of the game.

Abby's team also had a really good season. After the season she was asked to be a part of a traveling team during the summer. Knowing our summer would be extremely busy, we just joined the team for one tournament. The team were undefeated all 4 games and it sure was exciting to watch Abby in the goal blocking shots.

Monday, March 18, 2013

David and Caleb's Visit

 Over Spring Break David and Caleb stopped by for a couple of days. One day we went to Hagerman's National Wildlife Refuge where we took a stroll, ate a picnic, and saw some cool birds. These cousins always have a good time together!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Avery and Abby's Birthday Parties

This year both girls wanted their own slumber party with 4 of their good friends. Both parties were very similar. The girls ate pizza, had cake and ice cream, watched movies, played games, giggled lots, and made a craft. The girls and I picked up some cardboard 3D letters. Each girl got the beginning letter of their name. We used mod podge and scrapbook paper to cover them.


I am so thankful for each of these sweet little girls and the relationship they have with Avery and Abby.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Casa de la Esperanza

Just a few days after Christmas we left for a mission trip to Casa de la Esperanza in Mexico. About 45 of us (kids and adults) were on the trip. We rode about 24 hours on a bus we had chartered to Anahuac, Mexico.  Thanks to prayers, we had a very smooth border crossing and arrived at the orphanage safely.

Just to give you an idea where we were, I have included a description from their website.

Casa de la Esperanza is a Christian orphanage with a beautiful story. It was founded in 1988. Its purpose was to care for orphaned, abandoned, and abused children as well as children whose parents can not care for them. The home is located in Anahuac, Chihuahua, Mexico. Casa is situated on eighty acres in the beautiful Sierra Madre Mountains. Casa de la Esperanza literally translated means "house of hope" and that is exactly what it is for many children in Northern Mexico. Casa has developed into and become a safe haven for many of God's beautiful children. The first day a child arrives at Casa, they are generally hungry, tired, and scared. The scene is a sad and yet hopeful one. After those first few days, the child can be seen playing, smiling, and learning about many things. An undernourished and abused child without hope, in time becomes a healthy, active and loving part of our family. They become accustomed to daily routines such as meals and brushing their teeth. They encounter a caring staff including several American missionaries. The child finds a clean and safe environment where they begin to feel comfortable.

Our mornings consisted of working around the orphanage which is also a working farm. The girls and I did some gardening, pulling weeds, tilling the ground, and planting seeds. We also washed the orphanage vehicles and separated potatoes, rice, beans, and Bibles into many bags to be distributed into the nearby neighborhood. Wes and some others from our group put together 20 plus new bikes for the children. They also fixed up some of their old bikes that were broken. It sure was a treat to see the faces of the children when they saw all the new bikes. Other people painted, did carpentry work, and helped cook all the meals.

The afternoons were mostly spent playing with and loving on the children. There was obviously a language barrier, but love, laughter, and playing does not always require people to speak the same language.

A highlight for our family was going into a nearby neighborhood to deliver the food and Bibles we had bagged up. It was heartbreaking to see how some of the people lived.We saw several homes that would fit inside one of our bedrooms. The weather was near freezing and some of the walls to the homes were so very thin. The people were thankful to receive the food and Bibles. We even had the opportunity to pray with some of the people after we visited with them. When we would leave we would have tears and they would as well. Our prayer is that they could see Jesus in us.

One evening we put together a carnival completer with several games, a maze, and and prizes. We also made a special New Years Eve dinner and decorated the dining area for the special occasion.

To hear Gil, the director, tell stories of children's lives before they came to the orphanage breaks your heart, but then to see how God works through the ministry there warms your heart. God is truly at work there.

Wes and I had brought the youth group to Casa in past years, but it was extra special this year to bring Abby and Avery. They had heard us talk about our love for Casa, and seen lots of pictures and it was neat for them to actually go this time. They loved it too, and I was so proud of their attitude, how hard they worked, and the love they showed the children. I know their lives were touched that week just like our lives will forever be touched by this awesome place. We will definitely go back.
 Abby and Hattie sound asleep on the bus.

 How much farther?

 Enjoying the new bike!

 Sweet girls!

 Being goofy on the playground.

 Hard at work!

 A devo with the children.

 Sweet Manuelito fell asleep in Wes's lap.

 Wes's buddies.

Putting together new bikes.

Pulling the weeds. 

Photo: Greenhouse work @ Casa
 Ashley and Abby.

Working hard and having fun!

 The girls even mixed in manure from the cows at the farm. Great fertilizer!

Eva and I. Love this baby!

Avery and Grace taught the other girls hand games.

 Dinner with our new friends.

Gil and Becky Sanchez, the directors of the orphanage.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


We had a busy but fulfilling Christmas break. Soon after school got out for Christmas break, the Hicks came to visit.  Dad and Gina came over to celebrate Christmas as well.

We also went to Arlington for one night to celebrate with Wes's family. We did our traditional singing of songs about Jesus' birth and Abby read the birth of Jesus for us all.

After we returned home Cathy, Ed, Andy, Scott, and Kristin, Dad, Gina, and the Hicks all came over for dinner and great game of Progressive Rummy.  My mom's side of the family plays this all the time, and I love it!


It was a blessing to be with so many family members this Christmas Season!

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Disney World

During Thanksgiving break our family and Wes's parents went to Disney World. On the way to Florida  we spent two nights at Wes's great aunt's house in Alabama. We enjoyed our visit with his great Aunt and her children and grandchildren. We watched an Alabama game, took a long stroll through her neighborhood, shared some meals together, and had a lot of laughs.

Abby pushing Bonnie in Aunt Nette's neighborhood.

After two nights in Alabama, we drove the rest of the way to Orlando. We stayed at the beautiful
Parc Soleil Suites by Hilton Grand Vacations. Our two room suite was perfect for all of us, and we enjoyed walking around the hotel's gorgeous grounds and swimming in the different pools.

The next five days we visited Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Epcot, and Hollywood Studios. Some of our favorite things to ride were Space Mountain, Big Thunder Railroad, Tommorowland Raceway, Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, and the Safari Ride.

One night we had dinner with Cinderella, her stepsisters, her stepmother, and Prince Charming. The characters played their parts well and the food was excellent.


On Thanksgiving Day, after several hours at Animal Kingdom, we went to Mickey's Backyard BBQ for a delicious Thanksgiving Buffet.

We are extremely thankful to Nana and Paw Paw for an amazing trip!