A weekend of friendship and fellowship!

This weekend was filled with many joys and great fellowship. I’m still in PA visiting with Chip. Saturday morning she had a speaking engagement in New Jersay at a breakfast meeting, so we arose very early and were on the road by 6 am to drive to New Jersey. I had never been to New Jersey and was excited to add it to the list of places I’ve been, as well as to meet long-time friends of Chip.

The day dawned with beautiful Spring weather. The drive to and from New Jersey was a beautiful, much of it through Amish country. Chip is ever so kind and stop when I felt the need to capture something with my camera. On our way out of Pennsylvania one of our first sights was 2 hot air balloons floating across the early morning sky. That beautiful sight brought back memories of times-gone-by when Marc and Sarah and I awoke before dawn to help a balloonist set up their balloon for their early morning flight. Then, as part of a caravan of cars, we “chased” the balloon as it was carried with the wind across the landscape. Most balloonist will let you ride every now and then if you help with the set up and take down. There is a lot of work involved in ballooning, but it is worth the time and energy to help with setting up and taking down so as to have an opportunity to experience the magical feeling of floating above the ground.

I enjoyed hearing Chip present and loved meeting her friends. Grace had us to her home to join her, Ruth and Alda for a wonderful lunch of chicken salad, fresh fruit and energizing conversation. It was my pleasure and great joy to meet these amazing women.

Grace, Chip, and Alda

Alda, Ruth, Grace and myself

Dave, Lorrie, Mira & Liayla Sept 2008

On Sunday we again arose early but this time headed Northwest to State College to visit our dear friends Dave, Lorrie and their precious girls. I haven’t seen them since November 08 so it was such sweet joy to catch up and spend some time with them. The girls especially Liayla had grown. My heart was filled with joy when Mira immediately remembered me. When you are two, 5 months is a long time and I wondered whether she would remember me or not. Last fall I spent a lot of time holding little miss Liayla and enjoyed seeing now how she has grown. My heart was again touched when it was time to go and Mira cried for she didn’t want me to go. How do you explain to a 2 year old that you are moving half way around the world so you won’t be able to see her for awhile. This is such a sweet family. I will miss them.

Dave, Lorrie, Mira, Liayla and me April 2009

Mira not wanting us to go.

Time is going by so quickly. Preparations are falling into place and my excitement is building. Bill and Susan are hosting a pot-luck BBQ cook out on May 3rd as a Farewell Send Off. If you are in town please stop on by. Bring your favorite dish. Soda and Vicki’s traditional BBQ chicken is provided. Most importantly we’ll enjoy the fellowship.

Only $97 a month is needed for my support. I can hardly believe how everything is coming together. I’ve enjoyed hearing from so many with encouraging words and support. Thank you dear friends. I know without you I wouldn’t be were I am today. With all the technology, gizmos and devices – ways we can isolate from the world – let us remember the most important things in life are the people and relationships with those around. Turn off the TV. Yes, even shut down the computer, turn off the iPod, cell phones, MP3 players, and talk to your spouses, kids, neighbors, friends. Don’t wait till your house can be on the cover of Better Homes & Gardens. Open your home and enjoy good conversation around the table. The dust bunnies will still be there. So will the laundry. Instead,enjoy each other’s company because today is all we are promised.

Thank you each dear friends for joining me on this journey. Thank you for your kind and encouraging words, support and friendship.


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