Snowbound in Iowa

by a no longer snowbound person who no longer lives in Iowa but will always be an Iowan at heart and who was inspired to begin this blog during our memorable snowbound experience (with Wenells & Archers) in March 2007

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Winter Wonderland in Lake Geneva

I haven't blogged since summer...yikes! Before winter is over I better throw in some winter pix and highlights of the season. For those of you on facebook these are all repeats, but I wanted to blog them for posterity and for those of you in my family and friends circles that aren't on facebook.

Yesterday marked two years since I moved to Lake Geneva. Seems crazy to consider that. In some ways it seems like yesterday and in other ways it feels like I've lived here forever. It's delightful to be here in this beautiful part of God's creation living life with my family and being a part of camping ministry again.

So first here's several pix of a gorgeous day at camp...all taken from right outside my office. Yes, I have a gorgeous view all year round! And what a fabulous setting for God to meet campers and guests of all ages! This weekend is the 5th of our winter retreats. Starting tomorrow afternoon when our winter camps are done, I am ready for spring to arrive. But today I celebrate winter, and I'm alwasy thankful to live where I can enjoy all 4 seasons!

This next batch of pix were taken this afternoon while the older 5 nieces and nephews were sledding, snowboarding, skating, and playing outside in my brother's backyard.

This one is Henry in his Adrian Peterson jersey, me in my Vikings attire, and Tim who is also a Vikings fan cheering on our favorite team to victory!
 Me and the 3 Gowan kiddos:
I couldn't talk about winter without including this pix of Emma the basketball star as cheering her on throughout the winter has been great fun! Also lots of concerts/programs for all the kids that I love going to!
This next batch is from various DeVries family Christmas events. The first 2 are of our ladies morning out for coffee and shopping.

The guys playing something while the ladies were out, and who knows what the 8 kids were doing...
The 5 oldest kids opening their Christmas presents from Auntie Jane, mini scrapbooks of our trip to Iowa together over Labor Day weekend. It was so fun to watch their enthusiastic reactions to them!
And the last one is a random photo that was taken at camp of me and another Minnesota Viking co-worker dominating in his defense the coworker that is the Packers fan only posed for this pix cuz we all were trying to win tickets to the Vikings/Packers game. =)

I also love my church family here including my small group friends and coordinating the 3, 4, & 5 year old class. Our exciting news as a church family is that we are proceeding with the purchase of a building for our church!

Well, there's a flavor of winter in Lake Geneva for you...of course there's lots missing, but that gives you some highlights at least.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Summer continues....

I haven't blogged for a while, but there's not too much "new" to report in my life. It's summer at camp and that's the main thing happening. Tomorrow we start week 4 of camp, and my two oldest nieces (Emma and Sarah) will be at Pier 30 Explorer Camp!! My nephew Tim was at Day Camp the week before last, and my nephew Ben and niece Kristi will be at Day Camp next week. Fun to have each of them here!

Love hearing all the stories of God at work that make the long hours and stress worthwhile! Yay God!

Besides camp, there's lots of softball and baseball games, and there's been lots of extremely hot weather and absolutely no rain.

John 8:12 (camp theme verse this summer):  Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Camp Time!

It's been another full but good week! Summer campers arrive tomorrow afternoon at Covenant Harbor so there's been lots to do work wise. Wednesday evening when I left work about 8:30 was the first time I'd felt "caught up" in months. Of course that changed quickly the next day, but getting the "behind" stuff done was a great way to head into summer. Thanks to my parents and my friend Shellie for volunteering and helping with some of that catch-up work. Join me in praying for God to work mightily in the hearts and lives of the many youth arriving at camp tomorrow and throughout the summer! Pray for our staff who are finishing things and hopefully getting some rest before tomorrow. Can't wait to see what all God has in store this summer at Harbor!

Besides camp prep, the week has held a couple softball and baseball games, playing at the park with nieces and nephews, church small group hanging out, an evening with missionary/Iowa friends, and hanging out with family a bit today as well as tomorrow morning for Father's Day. Last night it was great fun to head into Chicago for a quick trip to see my dear friends the Ekstrands. They are missionaries in Africa and from my church in Iowa. Got to see most of the family and meet the new baby too! Great food and even better company! So worth the drive in even though it was quick.

OK God, we've done our best in our preparations. Now please work in mighty ways this summer at Covenant Harbor! So exciting!

Friday, June 8, 2012

A full week

Wow! It's been quite the week. Summer campers arrive in a week and that means lots to do. Summer staff have been gradually arriving for 2 weeks now and now are all here. Exciting times! Busy times too! I've worked some long hours this week, but thankfully what had to be done this week has been accomplished. Yay God! That is due to great team work: lots of help from co-workers as well as a friend who came as a volunteer today and rescued me. I am tired tonight but extraordinarily grateful! I'm also thankful that I was able to set aside this weekend as a weekend of rest. Yay God for that! Exactly what I need heading into a summer of shorter weekends and intensity. So I'll keep this short but post it in an effort to get back into blogging more regularly. Join me in prayer for our staff as we train and prepare intensely over the upcoming week. I'm excited to see all God is going to do at and through Covenant Harbor this summer! Thankful to be a part of it all!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Long Lost Blogger returns...

I haven't blogged in just about forever. I haven't fallen off the face of the earth...really. So to get back in the habit, I'll post a few pix that summarize life over the last several months. These are some of my favorite people:  my nieces and nephews!

All "my" kiddos on Easter

The Caspari kids--fun times in the snow
The DeVries kids-sleepover at Auntie Jane's
The Gowan kids-cute as buttons

And now for a run through my favorite kids from oldest to youngest:
Sarah is 10 and is becoming quite the reader & writer.
Emma is 10 and plays the flute, basketball, and softball.
Ben's 8th birthday. He's full of energy and enjoys legos and video games.

Timmy will be 8 in September. He loves to play tag and baseball.
Kristi (on the left) is 6 and loved kindergarten. She is quite the reader.

Sally is 4. She loved 3 year old preschool & is performing "I'm a little teapot" here.

Daisy will be 3 in August and is quite the character. She loves Puggles (Awanas).
Henry is 5 months old and huge! Gotta love this kid!
Mother's Day brunch at my house with the family who was around that weekend.

Laura, Mom, and I on Mother's Day

Daisy & Sally singing "Jesus Loves Me" at church after they and their little brother were dedicated...they weren't remotely shy and it was so very precious!

Auntie Jane & Sally Jane celebrating our birthdays together. We share the same last digit in our ages. =)

So maybe I haven't completely forgotten how to blog. I just haven't done it forever. Life is busy, full, good, crazy, fun, adventurous. I'm so glad to be on this journey with God...even when it's intense with summer at camp rapidly approaching. Join me in prayer for our summer staff who are preparing and training to lead our campers. And most of all pray for the campers God is bringing to Covenant Harbor this summer, including 5 of the precious kiddos shown above! Have I said how much I love sharing camp with them?!

I'm going to sign off for this round, but maybe, just maybe I'll start blogging again more often.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

My Home in Lake Geneva

Finally getting pix taken and blogged to share with those of you who haven't had a chance to visit yet...but you're welcome to visit anytime!

Out on Geneva Lake looking at Covenant Harbor (from Neal & Cyndie's being out on it) on a beautiful September day when my dear friend Stephanie was here visiting.
Another view of camp, specifically toward the lodge (kitchen, dining, and cabin space)
A different view of the Covenant Harbor lakefront and boat house
Me and Timmy on the boat
My office at Covenant Harbor (taken on my day off when showing Stephanie camp so I'm looking a bit relaxed)
Me in front of my home (taken in May when my dear friends the Welanders were here visiting from Iowa). It's a duplex on a quiet street that's less than 10 minutes from camp and family. My brother and sister-in-law are my landlords. =)
Entryway looking back at the front door
Living room (looking toward the front and the street)
Closeup of my Vikings Christmas tree and other stuff. The purple ornaments on the tree were a Christmas gift from some of my nieces and nephew and have all the kiddos names on them! My slogan this season: Even a bad season with the Vikings is better than a good season with anyone else!
Another view of my living room. The couch is a hide-a-bed so besides my guest room there's even more room for company...and my nieces and nephews love to pull it out for movies and sleepovers!
Close up of some of my "new" wall decorations that I love!
Another view of my living room (front door to right) and down the hall to the bedrooms. First door in the hallway on the right goes down to my basement; second door in the hallway on the right is my bedroom; bathroom is on the left in the hallway; guest room is straight ahead at the end of the hall.
From the living room looking into the dining area. The door on the left goes into the garage. I love that the garages for each of the duplexes are between the units so I don't share a wall with my neighbor (or any sounds/scents).
From the living room looking into the kitchen
From the dining area looking into the's cozy, but it works!
Another view of the kitchen
Closer up of the dining area
Other end of the hallway looking back toward the living room (door into garage ahead too)
Pix in the hallway ("my" kiddos and the Peterson family)
The bathroom:
My bedroom. Loving my new comforter and valances and much needed new bed (wonderful blessing from friends who no longer needed it).
My bedroom...check out my new Vikings lamp (awesome Christmas gift from the Peterson family):
Another view of my bedroom:
Guest room: Always ready for friends and family to come stay! Hint, hint!
"Office" side of the guest roomGuest room bookshelf (closet door to left)
Last but not least the unfinished basement under the whole unit. Lots of room for laundry, storage, and play space for the kids when they're over
This end of the basement is where I keep lots of toys for my nieces and nephews to play with. I've picked up lots of fun stuff at garage sales, etc. and love having space for the toys and playing!
So there you have it...the blog tour of Lake Geneva and my home!