Archive for January, 2011

Today is…


…Benj’s birthday!!!


B oy. ALL boy.

E arnest

N ifty

J ovial :)

A miable

M issionary to the lost

I nventive

N atural gentleman


Doesn’t this remind you of a Norman Rockwell picture? :)


Benjamin, you are an amazing “youngest-of-the-family”. :) May the Lord continue to develop within you a courageous, devoted heart for Him! Keep following God and never turn back. We love you!!!

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Having fun with music


We have a lot of fun getting together with our neighbor, Billy Don, and doing a little jammin’ around. =) Here are some pictures from the fun we had Sunday night.


Billy Don, Dad
Billy Don and Dad


Maggie on the mandolin

Carinna, an up-and-comin’ fiddler

Caleb and J-C
Caleb and John-Clay (it took awhile to get a picture where they weren’t making goofy faces).


Now, here’s a clip of “This Train is Bound for Glory”. Listen carefully for the train whistle in the background, played by Benj. ;)


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By or for the cause; on this account; for the reason.


I will sing unto the LORD, BECAUSE He hath dealt bountifully with me.
Psalm 13:6

I love the LORD, BECAUSE He hath heard my voice and my supplications.
Psalm 116:1

O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: BECAUSE His mercy endureth for ever.
Psalm 118:1

And He did not many mighty works there BECAUSE of their unbelief.
Matthew 13:58

Redeeming the time, BECAUSE the days are evil.
Ephesians 5:16

Be sober, be vigilant; BECAUSE your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.
1 Peter 5:8

We love Him, BECAUSE He first loved us.
1 John 4:19


BECAUSE He lives, I can face tomorrow!

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Fun/Wilds Music Camp/Adventure


After many high recommendations from our friends over the years about the annual Wilds Music Camp in North Carolina, four of us finally decided to make the trip!

If there’s one thing our family loves to do, it’s travel together. This was the biggest “sibling trip” we’ve taken, so far.


Stuffing the car
All four of us were CRAMMED into JC’s 5-seater car (the cooler was taking up the fifth seat), with pillows and bags beside us and in our laps. We tried not to think about it too much, or we’d get the “LET ME OUT!!” feeling. By the end of the trip, John-Clay knew exactly how the trunk had to be packed, so that everything would fit…including Hannah’s furry boots. :)

As we entered North Carolina, these 4 residents of “big sky – cedar tree – prairie land” gazed in wonder at the beauty of the mountains and valleys.

We couldn’t get over the winsome beauty of the country farms spread throughout the valleys and set upon the hillsides. The rural roads were calling us, so we took a little detour. :)

Lolly Joe

Red barn

These signs mean what they say!


After driving a total of 18 hours in 2 days, we were very glad to finally arrive.

Abbie, Charity, Hannah, and Julie 
Let the camp begin!! For the next 3 days, we attended special workshops of our choice, studied rich truths in the book of James, met lots of new people, enjoyed afternoon recreation, drank lots of hot tea, played in orchestras, took private voice lessons, and sang LOTS of choral music!

Dining hall

Wilds ensemble


Handbell Workshop

Panoramic of the lake Cool Beans coffee shop
The guy who checked us in on the first day was so impressed that the four of us drove all the way from Oklahoma, that he gave us each a token for a free drink at the camp’s Cool Beans coffee shop! We all got larges. :)

Human foosball
Human foosball…a dangerous game.

Gazeeball was our favorite!! It’s like soccer played in the air inside a gazebo.

All three girls and our friend Julie went on the famous, 65-ft. Giant Swing. They buckle you up in a harness, and a cable slowly pulls you up…and up…and up.

Ab and Julie

Giant Swing
With intense anticipation, you wait for the “drop”.

Then, down and out you swing in a GIANT sort of way, while your tummy rolls, your hair flies, and you scream with…delight. =D It was a blast!!

Giant swing     

Group hike
One afternoon, Charity and I went on the group hike to a beautiful waterfall.

We came away from the camp with lots of memories, great musical training, and a refreshed vision of how God is glorified in our music.

Our plans for the drive back weren’t as simple as going, and the snowstorm that swept across the south changed them quite rapidly. However, we were still able to stop and see special family and friends along the way. Everyone’s hospitality was amazing!

Biltmore Village
Touring Biltmore Village in Asheville on a snowy afternoon. The Thomas Kinkade Gallery was my favorite!

Our aunt and uncle went all out to make our stay with them wonderful. We had a grand time catching up, playing games, working a puzzle, and eating delicious food. :) Thank ya’ll so much!


Our next stop was to visit friends in Georgia who went on a mission trip to Ukraine with John-Clay a couple of years ago. This is the family of the couple who led the team.

Don’t let the little guy fool ya with his frown – he’s a sweetie and sat on our laps all evening. :)

Due to the incoming storm, we headed out early for home. Once we hit Arkansas, the snow started falling. When it got dark and the roads kept getting worse, we decided to stop at a hotel to spend the night. So close to home, yet so far away! We made it home safely the next day. Thank You, Lord!


As I’m sure you all know, traveling with family is either the best of times or the worst of times. There were a few unpleasant moments when we were having trouble agreeing on something, but overall we had a wonderful time together. I don’t think there is anyone else we’d rather travel with than each other. It’s such a huge blessing to be great friends with your siblings! It takes a lot of humility, forgiveness, and grace from God to make that possible, but it sure is worth it. Take a moment today to show someone in your family that you really love them.

Until the next adventure,


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