It is not too often that you have the privilege and honor of baptizing someone in a deployed environment, but this was one of those moments. It was a few weeks ago that Amber asked to be baptized. This began the search for a suitable baptistry. We began by asking our woodshop folks for help, but then saw a packing crate that appeared to be very adequate for the job at hand. We had the woodshop guys come by and shorten it a bit. We needed to line it, but could find no plastic anywhere on the compound. It was just as well because when we were giving the crate a very close inspection, we noted that there were a significant number of lag bolts missing from the bottom. Basically, if we had tried to use it, the sides would have blown out. Not good.
We then had the woodshop guys build one from scratch. They had it done in under an hour. They came by to caulk it shortly after that. It did spring a couple of leaks, but we were able to stanch the flow of water just long enough. We threw in a few buckets of very hot water, and we were ready.
Amber had never been baptized. We spent a little bit of time talking about the meaning of baptism. The next day, after the evening service, we had the actual baptism. We read a bit of Scripture, and then we rehearsed the technique so she would not drown (it is always good to avoid drowning, particularly in this setting), and then came the moment. She affirmed her faith in Jesus, and then in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit... It was a great time.
I hope to do a couple more before I am out of here.
This may be my favorite deployment photo yet. It sums up our current season. Stacia talks with her Dad after opening (and putting on ) the gift he sent.
It so clearly shows the BLESSING of having a spouse deployed in the 2010's.....I still remember Michael's first deployment. We had to go to base once a month for a Video Teleconference call. I was pregnant and we told him the baby would be a boy (Nolan - 11) with a room full of airmen looking on.
It also shows the LIMITATIONS and the LONGINGS of a deployment regardless of the era and technology. Stacia's eyes are sparkling but her bottom lip was quivering. They miss events, we miss them....We're proud of them.
I promised an update and so I won't go to bed until I catch up.
This week FOOTBALL entered our lives. There is a morning practice from 7:45 - 10:30 (ish - big ish). There is an afternoon practice from 3:45 - 6:30 (ish - usually more like 6:45 or 6:50). I drove 20 hours this week back and forth to the base.
I discovered the a.m. practice is perfect for going to the gym.....meeting a friend afterwards, checking the post office, returning library books, quick grocery run and birthday shopping.
Arielle has supervised table school during that time. We get home and have lunch.
We do couch school. Yes, we DID get a full week of school in this week (well the youngers did). We take Jared back to football and then the youngers and I go play. We went to the beach, we went to a park, we played with friends....you get the idea.
Beyond that...this gal got a new look. She learned to speak and eat again. Only once did she get floss stuck in the braces. They are purple and pretty cool. We all approved of her decision NOT to go with yellow.
A funny aside has to do with rain and Arielle's dental trips. It has ALWAYS rained when she goes to the dentist. Monday was HOT and sunny....and yet...it POURED, lightening strikes, thunder....during the time she was in the chair. She and Jared had had a running dialogue about this BEFORE the appt.....as Jared had practice in the storm. LOL
We experienced our first tropical storm of the season coming through - bit of a dud, I think.
I continued work on local and regional PWOC things.
Tuesday night I got a call to meet Jared and a coach at the Emergency Room. Half the kids had helmets, half did not and they were learning blocking drills or some such thing. Jared got 3 stitches......
And....*I* added another bit of wisdom to my mommy repertoir...."When going out, always wear clean underwear and SHAVE your face...never know when you'll need stitches...requiring big band-aides to be ripped off your face daily for 3 days. They didn't shave due to risk of infection.
We had dinner with various deployment buddies, park outings, walks, workout dates.....the accuracy of this sun dial always amazes the kids.
Thursday was a Chaplain's spouses breakfast. I love this group of women. I'm blessed. We also received a package from Michael.....it contained a birthday gift for Stacia and a few other goodies.
This really cool chess set....inlaid...Stacia claimed it and I told her this would be a family set and stay home when they left home.
We stopped for our free smoothies at Cafe Aomori (deployment perk). On the way out I visited briefly with some kids in the lobby of the club. Their parents walked in and the mom said, "Are you De'Etta? I recognize your kids." She's an Internet/Facebook friend. She lives further north than us and we've not met before. FUN.
We attended Jesse's last baseball game (yep, Dad's deployed). He pitched a great game and the kids enjoyed playing Red Rover with friends behind the bleachers. Twyla showed us a great, quick, healthy Italian dinner.....With a name like Clizignxosneyojpgoiueoho you know they're Italian. ::snort::
Saturday morning, after the gym, bright and early......I went to Twyla's and watched a DVD she had by Lou Giglio. I ordered the set. He's wonderful. I want to attend a Passion Conference.
We attended a Missoula Children's Theater play. The kids were disappointed not to be able to audition. We were told if you were late for a practice or missed a practice you would be kicked out...and knowing Arielle was getting braces, we chose to simplify. I'm glad we did. I'm not sure how else we would have survived last week.
After the play we met a friend and her son at the park. Kids played, mommies walked and encouraged one another (another deployment buddy). Is anyone still reading? Saturday a.m. I had started a roast. By the time we picked up Jared from the last practice it was 6:55 and I was tired. We went to the Food Court with Renee and Ricky (deployment buddies). Yum. Great day.
We walked in to the house at 8:30 p.m. to the smell of roast! Oops....we had a great roast for dinner today. I think I'll do that much more often. I baked fresh bread before we went to chapel.
We are celebrating this girl's 5th birthday today (it's tomorrow for real). We went to her favorite park after lunch. (Yes, I know she has an under bite...THIS one I figured out on my own. LOL)
She took us all on a "birthday walk".....not sure what's up with THIS pose. LOL
Jared found a reel - he's DETERMINED to build his own pole. I would buy him one.
What do you think? Horse fly?
Zander's new obsession. He bought it.
Back at home, our birthday gal came out in a truly international outfit. The NEW pig hat from Japan....her American tank and a skirt/scarf from Afghanistan.
At this point, Michael Skyped. She opened his gift.
I snorted when the call dropped. I was trying to call and she came in to model the gift.....and he wasn't responding to her chattering and posturing...finally she said, "He's just staring!" Poor thing...we all lost it.
Michael joined us for the rest of the birthday party.....but we couldn't share the cake. I'll write another birthday post....afterall I'm not behind, the birthday is tomorrow.
It was a BUSY week and I'm thrilled it went so well. It was so busy, I didn't even upload photos daily. It's good I took some, or I would not remember all we'd done. As unbelievable as it feels, this next week will be busier.
Double football practices continue (one more week)
We're going to continue trying to do a full week of school....we want time off in October when Michael makes it back to Japan.
I have a PWOC Regional board meeting via Skype
I need to work on the Regional PWOC budget a bit more
We're watching Ricky - which will be a blast and give Renee time to pray through her upcoming speaking for the Ladies Fall Rally.
I will be speaking a bit at the MOPS leadership retreat.
We need to get 12 hour fasting labs for Jared, and stitches removed.
I need to continue working on details for the Ladies Fall Rally/PWOC Kick Off.
Saturday is our local training. I'm doing parts of it.
In the midst of it all, God is teaching me to rest, to submit to His timing, to stretch and grow and delight in His word. To listen for HIS voice in so many different ways. To dance with Him. It's been a fantastic week.
It's only 9 p.m. but I'm EXHAUSTED...heading for bed with the hopes I wake up early enough to make a dent in some of the "to dos" before heading to the base field and gym.