June 23, 2007

Getting ready for church Sunday morning. We went to church at Mt. Pleasant on Sunday.  Elvin preached a Father's Day message from Ephesians.  We came home to a delicious dinner that Mother served us.  Dilly rolls, grilled boneless chicken thighs, baked asparagus, fresh potatoes, cabbage salad, and coconut cream pie for dessert.  Definitely not helping my diet...!  In the afternoon we took the children with us over to Phillip Knicelys to see Ina Sue's old co-worker A.J. Rhodes who is back in the area again after quite a few years.  In the evening Mother hosted a back deck social with Uncle Lee's, Robert & Lori, and Ivan Nolts who were visiting Uncle Lees.  We had a nice time visiting and playing games then ate a light supper together.
Mother's larkspur has nearly taken over... We got up Monday morning and started driving north to Keiths.  We got to Hagerstown around 11:00 and Jeanne fixed us a delicious dinner of grilled hamburgers and banana splits. Keith & Jeanne are in the process of buying an old house their in Hagerstown with about 10 acres of land.  We went to look through it with them after dinner.  The house is a lovely old stone two-story in a beautiful setting.  However, it has had some problem with the foundation settling and the walls, floors etc. are almost all out of kelter.  They are trying to decide if it is worth trying to fix it up.  I thought that my house needed lots of work when I started on it but I'm afraid I would be very discouraged starting work on this one... 
Capping strawberries for supper with Maude & Lori. After the tour and some visiting outside, we left and drove right down the road to where my Aunts Anna, & Edna have their new apartment.  Aunt Edna was still at work when we got their but she soon got home.  We had a very nice time visiting with them and they made us strawberry milkshakes which went very good with the hot afternoon.  We left around 4:00 and drove home.  Gave the children their baths then left them with Mother while we made a quick shopping trip to Costco.  Ina Sue bought me a new watch for Father's Day.  I like a watch that is completely water resistant so that I never have to take it off when showering, swimming, diving etc.
An evening social on the back deck. Mother Showalter fixed us a great breakfast pizza for breakfast on Tuesday.  We drove over to Valley Structures for a visit with our buddies Toni & Bonnie then went on over to the Shenandoah Valley Produce Auction to see what was going on there.  The auction was just started a year or two ago as a place where the produce farmers could sell their wares.  Ina Sue's Uncle Nub was instrumental in getting it started.  We enjoyed observing for a while but didn't bid on anything.  From there we drove up to Uncle Eldwins for a delicious dinner with Uncle Eldwins and Grandmother Vera.  Aunt Vera Rose really put on quite a spread for us.  The visit with Grandmother afterward was also very nice. 
Keith gave the children a golf cart ride. We hardly got back to the Showalters in time for me to cut up a cantaloupe and pack up the van for our evening excursion.  We left at 4:45 and drove up to Skyline Drive to meet Bill & Dorcas Byler and Maria for a picnic.  Bill and Dorcas were our beloved neighbors for several years after we got married.  They have since moved to Catlett, VA.  Dorcas is in the process of undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer.  It was really good to see them again and to hear their testimony of this difficult time.   The weather on Skyline Drive was very foggy and threatening rain so the scenery was not as impressive as it could have been.  We did see lots of deer though and even a black bear.  It was pretty late before we got back to Mt. Crawford.  I put the children and wife to be then drove in to Bridegwater to find internet access where I could connect to my network at the shop and do some work and last minute prep for our PRMC meeting tomorrow.  It was after 1:00 before I got to bed.
Visiting with Aunts Anna & Edna Strite. I had to get up at 6:00 and get ready for our Puerto Rico meeting at 8:00.  Craig Myers is taking over the superintendent role in Puerto Rico from Carl Hartman so both of them attended our meeting this time.  We had some issues that took a while to discuss then had to get some papers notarized afterward.  It was about 3:30 before I got back to Showalters to pack up.  We got left by 4:00 and arrived back in Govan around 11:30.  So good to be back in our home in Govan!
Visiting with Grandmother Vera. Thursday was the 1'st day of summer.  Hard to believe when it has seemed like summer for some time now.  Ina Sue started a huge batch of laundry and I went in to the shop to begin catching up from my 3 days off.  Ina Sue's back was really bothering her so she dropped the children off with Mary and drove in for an appointment with Dr. Shealy.  When I got home from work we ate a quick supper then I rushed to mow as much of our yard as I could before it got dark.  Ina Sue took the children over to Carls to pick tea and made concentrate for 4 gallons for tea for our camping trip.  It was almost midnight before we got to bed.
A visit with Ina Sue's old co-workers at Valley Structures. We got up at 6:00 Friday morning and left the children sleeping while we drove over to Leon & Beth's to pick veggies from their garden.  They are in Ontario for a week and asked us to keep things from going bad.  We picked some squash, zucchini and some sweet corn.  I had a huge day at work but was able to get home around 5:30.  We packed up the van (again) and drove over to Lake Thurmond in Georgia to Petersburg campground.  Royal & Jenn Barnhart had invited us to camp there for the weekend with them.  They had an air conditioned camper while we (the serfs) were planning to sleep in a tent.  We stopped at Walmart on the way and bought a small fan to help out with the heat.  We got to the campsite shortly after dark and Royal helped me get the tent setup.  We were pretty tired so we turned in to bed shortly after 10:30.
All packed up and ready to head south. It was pretty hot and muggy in the tent but I hung our small van in the top of the tent blowing down on us and it really felt pretty nice.  In fact, as the night wore on it actually started to get pretty cool and I had to keep turning the fan back until finally we just turned it off.  When we woke up Saturday morning it really felt very nice.  Jenn & Royal made us a wonderful breakfast of pancakes and sausages with orange juice.  We took the children out in the lake for a swim for several hours in the morning then Duane & Janice brought their children over to join us during the afternoon. 
Landon took to the water like a fish... Duane shepherded the children for a while in the lake while the rest of us sat around and talked.  Then while the children took their naps, Duane, Royal & I played a great game of Monopoly for old times sake.  Somehow I allowed Duane to eke out a win.  (I'm still spited!)  Ina Sue and I were responsible for supper.  We grilled a bunch of marinated veggies, catfish, and fresh sweet corn along with a pan of savory rice.  For desert Ina Sue served tapioca custard and bars.  After supper we visited and played a game of "Apples to Apples".  Duane & Janice left around 10:00 and we put the children to bed before playing several games of "Sequence" with Royals. The ladies aced the game.  A very nice and enjoyable day!
A "friendly" game of Monopoly with Royal & Duane.