Hello Aunt Lennie! (And everyone else).
Today's update on everyone:
Daniel and Sam went hiking on the Ozark Highlands Trail. (If you follow the link, you will find more information about the trail.) They had planned to do a 165 mile stretch in 8 days. They decided in the third day, this was somewhat ambitious. They no longer had their Appalachian Trail stamina, and were pushing hard to do almost 20 miles per day. Daniel had wanted to do the trail "ultra-light", which is difficult in winter conditions. They did go as light as they could- just sleeping bags, a rain fly, and a groundcloth for protection. No tent, no hammocks. They carried a 4 day supply of food, and had me cache the midway resupply point. I picked them up at the midway point yesterday. The forecast had remained looking fair... yet snows came blowing in from the northwest. REALLY blowing in. The high temperature for a couple of the days was mid 30's... if you were in a sunny sheltered area. Out of the winds of 35 to 40 MPH, which drastically reduced the temperatures with wind chill. The boys DO use high quality equipment, so fared well. They just decided that 165 miles was too far, too fast over the mountains in February. And as I looked up the site for the link above, the portion of trail they would have been on today is closed due to wildfire. Tom and I had noticed a widespread fire over a portion of the forest as we headed to the point where we cached the boys resupply... I think it MIGHT of started as a controlled burn. Maybe. But no fire is safe when the winds start whipping.
Anyway, they are home safely. I have them working on cleaning their room and the music room. They have been so busy working lately, they haven't ever got completely unpacked.
Tom isn't too thrilled with not getting to come home for lunch any more. It is just too far to drive for his allotted lunch break. He has almost got the garage set to his satisfaction. My giant rocker is still using his real estate in there. He hasn't had time to make a seat for it. I have been too busy to complete the lower edges with a second coat, though I may get to that later today. I got some yellow enamel to embellish the sun/ sunflower in its back.
Tom had a nice 60th birthday. Becky and her kids were here, as well as Tommy. His siblings and Mom sent cards and gifts. Connor and Alana (Chris' older two kids) were here as well.
Tommy is still in school at Christ for The Nations International in Dallas. I think he has two terms left until graduation? I may be wrong on that.
Benjamin and Paula are doing well. Their trip to visit us has been postponed as they are pinching pennies these days for a big project. Not sure if they want that project shared here, so I will have to wait and ask them. Those two are determinedly frugal, and pretty amazing at what they have been accomplishing. Jasher and Althea are well, and both seem to really be talking up a storm these days. Jasher is very curious about everything... and, well, BEN is his Dad. I expect he will be scary smart.
Althea is walking... a real toddler, not baby anymore.
Becky and Paula both gave talks at the annual Heart Of Motherhood retreat this past weekend. Paula spoke of healing through diet and healthy eating. Becky spoke on Joy.
Becky and Stephen are doing well. They are continuing their search for a house. Tyrel cut his finger recently, trying to cut fruit for his sisters with a knife he had been forbidden to use. That is healing well. Kimber got her fingers shut in a door at retreat, but is just fine now. Dakota and Grace are growing so fast it's hard to believe. Grace will be 2 in May.
Our next upcoming birthday for grandkids is Nickole. She will be 7 on the 25th of this month. After that, Alana hits her teens on March 5th. Alana is in band and cheerleading. Connor is leaning to drive! I don't hear much about Nickole or Gavin. Their mothers tell me they are doing good, and what address to send gifts to. I am left to assume the gifts are received. No recent pictures of either.
Tom and I fell off our THM (Trim healthy mama/man) diet. Time to get back on that! He doesn't have more vacation until mid summer. Jaffa helps me, as I have to actually walk him a few times each day, rather than let him out for awhile on his own. Town living.
That's about all from us.