2014 Honduras -Day 2

Since today was Sunday, our group headed to Church. We attended our sister church, Iglesias de Christo Casa de Paz (Church of Christ House of Peace). We participated in a VERY high energy worship service and Pastor Jonathan preached the paint off the walls. Great to worship with people who love God!

We had lunch and then headed to a local hospital maternity ward where we gave the new & expecting mothers packages consisting of a “one-sie”, a newborn outfit, and a small stuffed animal for their new babies. The mothers were very welcoming and we prayed with many of them.

Dinner was at a place known for their grilled meats served family style. We enjoyed the meal and then headed for home where we distributed food items to some of the homeless men around the park.

Tomorrow is a work day as we prepare for the first medical clinic on Tuesday.

Iglesia de Christo Casa de Paz

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Pastor Jonathan preaching

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Dinner

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Cheers,
Jay

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2014 Honduras -Day 1

Many of you know that I’ve signed up for a mission trip to Honduras. Well, I left home at 3:20 am this morning and landed in San Pedro Sula, Honduras at 11:10am.

After waiting a bit for my sponsor and ride from the airport, we finally arrived at the Gran Sula Hotel around 2:30pm

We grabbed a bite to eat in the hotel diner and now we will spend the afternoon getting medicines ready for a couple of days of medical clinics.

A few shots from my balcony where a festival is raging in the park across the street.

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More to come as the week progresses.

Cheers,
Jay

Ciao!

The girls just returned from another European tour with Madison’s High School English Teacher.  This year, Mackenzie was old enough to go (you have to be a high school aged student).  So my wife and daughters signed up along with Carie’s sister and my niece.  The five of them toured with 23 other students and adults on the trip arranged by Reformation Tours.  This is the second tour with this company and they do a great job.

They landed in Venice on Wednesday morning last week and began a 9 day tour of many of  Italy’s most famous cities and attractions.  Venice (obviously), Pisa and the leaning tower, Verona and Juliet’s balcony (from Romeo & Juliet), Florence where they saw Michael Angelo’s “David” in the Academia Museum, the St. Francis Basilica in Assisi, Rome and the Vatican, Pompeii and the ruins, and finally the Isle of Capri.  That sounds like all the high points if you ask me.

I’ve only begun to hear the stories, but from all accounts it sounds like the trip of a lifetime.  Well, that’s probably only true until next year’s trip.

Now that I’ve had a chance to aggregate all of the photos, here are a couple of my favorite shots from the trip and a link to the rest at Flickr.

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Gondola’s at the docks in Venice

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Silly tourist photos at the Leaning Tower of Pisa

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Photos are forbidden in the Sistene Chapel (except for a sneaky selfie)

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The cousins in Vatican City (St. Peter’s Cathedral)

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Hailey & Mackenzie with their toes in the Mediterranean.

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The only shot of all the girls (Leaning Tower of Pisa)

 

Cheers,
Jay

 

 

2014 Mackenzie Graduates

The school year has come to an end, and with it, Mackenzie’s elementary/middle school years have concluded as well.  This week, we celebrated  the final week of school and all of the activities that are part of graduation.

She was captain of her Field Day team and had a blast, she flew kites and launched rockets with the 2nd graders from the elementary school, and attended awards day on the day of graduation.

Like her sister, Mackenzie was  Valedictorian of her class and delivered a speech during the commencement ceremony.  She may be the first Valedictorian in history to quote Forrest Gump, Yoda, and Ronald Reagan in the same commencement speech.

A few photos from the past week and the graduation festivities.

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Mackenzie on her last day of Middle School, with a photo from her first day of school

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Mackenzie receives the “Best Actress” award during awards day.

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Delivering her commencement speech as valedictorian

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Receiving her diploma

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Carie & I with our Valedictorians

And a link to the full album at Flickr.

Cheers,
Jay

8th Grade Dance

The end of middle school is quickly approaching and the month of May will be full of festivities.  On Friday night, Mackenzie attended the 8th grade dinner dance.  Wow, I’m not ready for my baby to grow up just yet.

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Cheers,
Jay

 

 

2014 8th Grade Highlights

Only a few more weeks of school remain in Mackenzie’s final year at Wolfbranch Middle School.  She’s had a great year, and the recognition and awards are starting to roll in.

Thursday, we were treated to a luncheon with the Optimist Club where she was recognized as the outstanding 8th grader from Wolfbranch.   A very nice honor and her principal paid her tremendous compliments during his nomination speech.

Mackenzie & her Optimist Award

Mackenzie & her Optimist Award

That same evening, we attended the spring chorus concert.  At the end of the evening, Mackenzie’s chorus teacher recognized her as the outstanding 8th grader for her 5 years of participation and her commitment to the program.

Mackenzie performing her solo

Mackenzie performing her solo

Last night, she rode on a float in the Belleville Bicentennial Parade and sang with the Wolfbranch Rock Band.

Mackenzie Rocking with the Rock Band

Mackenzie Rocking with the Rock Band

It’s been a busy few days, and I don’t think it’ll slow down until school’s out for the summer.

Cheers,
Jay

2014 Class Trip

Two years ago, I made the trip to Washington D.C. with Madison.  At the time, I told Carie that she had to go with Mackenzie.  Well, a couple of weeks ago it was their turn.  While I can’t give you the kind of play-by-play that I did when I was actually on the trip, I thought I’d post a couple of the apparent highlights.

Mackenzie with the Washington Monument

Mackenzie with the Washington Monument

Mackenzie & her friends at the reflecting pool

Mackenzie & her friends at the reflecting pool

In front of the White House

In front of the White House

 

Cheers,

Jay