Saturday, April 26, 2008

Snowstorm at April's End

March came in like a lion (it's not just the weather but the van transmission that counts), and April went out like a lion. There's a 3 foot snowdrift in front of my office door.

Thursday one of my two visits in the Grygla area wasn't home, so I rescheduled the visits for next week and worked on my sermon. Friday I got the May calendar done for the newspapers; and Jeremy, Mom, and Dad arrived. Grandpa K was released from the hospital. It seems it was over exhaustion combined with acid reflux. But with a man of his age and medical history they can't take any chances. We're all thankful that he's doing well. We're sad that he and great Grandma couldn't be here with us. But we're glad they're well and recovering.

Alyssa got the bulletin done. I came over late to the office to memorize the sermon and print calendars.

It was snowing.

Saturday morning I was up early and got a phone call, "Ya look outside yet?" "Yep." "The Highway Patrol has closed the roads, can you call Shirley to tell her there's no church today?" "Yep. I'll call the radio station too." So, no church or sat. school at Mt. Olive today. I couldn't have gotten out of the driveway.

I played a few songs off of our Christmas CDs, and worked on fixing Jeremy's computer.

Mary and Louisa made some great meals.

Now I'm over here at the office reviewing the sermon for tomorrow. Nazareth canceled for tomorrow. The roads won't be plowed in time. So I have St. Petri and confirmation at Oak Park.

I checked my messages a bit a go and Paul McCain has a funny video on his blog that some of my readers won't know about otherwise, so here it is. Paul doesn't comment on the video. I think it captures quite a bit about what I dread in listening to sermons.




Enjoy! And be comforted! You won't get any of this here at Clearwater.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Winkel's last photos

Northern MN has a lot to offer.
Most of NE Minnesota is under park law. But it can be enjoyed with a canoe and some enterprising will.

Photos on the way home on Monday

What does it look like to travel from Detroit Lakes, MN, to Oklee, MN? Yeah, I bet a whole lot of you are wondering.

While I'm listening to one of my favorite albums ("The Trinity Sessions", by the Cowboy Junkies) you have to look at some pathetic photos I took on our way home form Winkel on Monday.

The Winkel was at Audubon, MN, this is 7 miles west of Detroit Lakes, MN on highway 10.

After going out of Audubon through Detroit Lakes (Who wants to see another picture of billboards and Wall Mart?) we went north on Mn Hwy 59.

We went through Callaway first.


Ogema was our next city. It's kind of an ironic name "city". The photo captures Ogema very well. It's one of the cities in the White Earth Reservation in Minnesota. It's not big. But MN's definition of a "city" is not how big it is. What matters is its articles o f incorporation.


We drove through Waubun. But I didn't get a good photo for that city.

Next was Mahnomen. Mahnomen is south of Bijou, Winger, and Erskine.

Usually when I'm visiting shut-ins I'll stop at Erskine for fuel. Today we just drove by the Win-E-Mac gas station.

There are a number of road obstacles while driving Mn 59. Wilde life like moose can stop a vehicle pretty quick.

The Amish are another highway distraction. The little horse and buggy sign is a problem here.
It is hard for me to think of a visit to a shut-in south of us that doesn't have to deal with some Amish, Mennonite, or Hutterite establishment.

But when got to McIntosh, MN, the problem was an old pickup truck with O2 on board.



After McIntosh we had clear sailing to home. I did take more photographs from there. But a very flat land is hard to make attractive. Maybe I'll try in the future.

A whole lotta stuff

Since Monday was a church business day, with Winkel in Audubon; with Sunday being so full of all kinds of work-Tuesday was my day off this week. What does a Confessional Lutheran Pastor do on a day off? Well, I tried backing a handmade bow with fiberglass. That failed. The fiberglass hardened fine, but it didn't stick to the wood. So I'll have to do some more research so I can get it right.

Gene and Nancy gave us a nice load of hay bails. Mary, the kids, and I have finally towed them over to the north edge of the garden. We're using some for the garden, and we're using some for a backstop for pistol shooting.
When we got the bails stacked, Mary got her Bersa Thunder .380, I got my Springfield XD 9mm and we shot sets of 5 at paper plate targets at various ranges. I am amazed at Mary's accuracy with her lightweight pistol. Maybe it's a "girl thing" but she handles that wild little handgun very well. For me? Well, from 30 feet and shorter I can keep a grouping within 3 inches.

I remember that Wade B. asked me one time after church(Wade's a Law Enforcement Officer and member at one of my congregations) how I was doing in my shooting. I'm fearful that I misled him. I think I said "yards" when I meant "feet." Wade, I can keep a tight grouping at 25 feet, not 25 yards. That's a big difference. I'm sorry that I said the wrong word. My brain was on hold. I was so amazed that you were so surprised at my accuracy. Well, my accuracy isn't what I said. I'm lucky to hit a paper plate at 25 yards with my handgun.

Tuesday was also filled with cleaning (garage and elsewhere) and wrestling and reading to the kids.

Wednesday morning we packed up the family and went to the thriving metropolis of Thief River Falls. I have to say that I like this little city quite a bit. Having a dozen shut-in members living here means that I visit it often. I've gotten to know Bruce and Denise H. at Johnny's Cafe. They serve a good gluten free chile that needs a bit of zip for me, but is fine for most of the Norwegians in the area. And Shirley and her husband do very well at serving a gluten free Chinese dinner.

Well, we didn't go to Johnny's or to Shirley's today. I recently became a member of the Pennington County Sportsmens' Club, so I took the family out to see the facilities. Another member was out at the Pistol Range. I think everyone liked the facility. Actually, Elsie, Matt, and Louisa were more intrigued by the dead animal in the drainage ditch as we entered. But I hope that I can hold the Clearwater Parish Shootout at the club this Autumn.

After driving through the club we went to Mary's and the kid's haircuts (next door to Johnny's Cafe, and Bruce H. waved at us as we arrived--one of the reasons I like this little city). Matt and I went to Ace Hardware and picked up some 3/8 inch copper pipe and endcaps. I hope to make a few firepistons with these. Here's video on making a firepiston out of a maglite.



After the haircuts we picked up a few things a wally world, and went home. This afternoon Dawn and I taught Wednesday School.

Mary had a great supper prepared. It was already about 8:30 when we were done. My Dad called afterward. My mom's father, Grandpa K. was airlifted to to Methodist Hospital in the Twin Cities this afternoon. We're not sure of his situation yet. Grandpa and Grandma K. have visited us several times up here in NW MN. Grandpa is a veteran of WWII, especially o the battles at Tarawa and Saipan. My Dad thinks that Grandpa may have an infection, but we won't know for a while. Grandpa K. has spoken to our Clearwater Youth Group about his experience in WWII at a few of our meetings over the past half-decade. Please keep him in your prayers.

Tomorrow I have shut-in visits up in the Grygla area. I hope my "shut-ins" are home.

Monday, April 21, 2008

A different link for the previous post

Some readers couldn't get to the video posted. Here's the url to the youtube page for those who couldn't get it:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=CZIx2DujojQ

Today we had Winkel in Audubon, MN. I presented a summary with comments on Walther's XIth thesis. Pastor Thompson presented a good study on a section of the Smalcald Articles. And Pastor Stafford had a good study of the Historic Lessons for next Sunday (Rogate).

It was a good, but long day. I'm glad that Mary was willing to drive. I wasn't able to stay awake during the drive. I finished up my presentation last night and actually fell asleep at the computer keyboard. I was just like a college freshman trying to get a paper done the night before it was due. I left all my typos in, including a "dddddd" where I fell asleep at the keyboard. I don't crave humiliation, but there are times when being humbled is appropriate. I deserved it.

Matthew spent the day over at Connie and Kelly's working for them. He was tired when he got home. The rest of the kids, from Louisa on down came with us and enjoyed playing with the Thompsons' and the Staffords' children.

Shawn and Amy, send me the letter I wrote last time. I'll get it to you some time tomorrow with a Notary seal. The bit that I have now isn't as good as what I wrote previously. And for whatever reason, I can't find a copy of it on my computer.

Char, I think there are a couple of game sites that would allow Henry and John to play against each other. I'm not sure if John will understand what he would be doing yet. But we can try. He seems to like to fiddle with the games more than actually play them.

Brent W., I know your computer is on the fritz right now and you'll read this sometime later. Knaack-a-palooza looks great. I don't think I'll be able to play guitar that weekend. I have too many other obligations. Remember, the fact that I am a pastor of 4 congregations means that I am fairly busy on Saturday and Sunday mornings. An evening playing music on the weekend is kind of an expensive thing to do, with respect to time and ability to perform my duties. But I look forward to your kind offer to be able to step in and play guitar with with Luck of the Draw.

RaeAnn, I have your tupperware. Thanks for sending so much food to my family. I'll try to drop it by your place when I do shut-in calls up at Grygla next week. I think your home is just south of the 9mile corner. A little west of the tar road. Please post a comment to confirm or correct my information. I won't put it up on the blog unless you want it to be there. It will probably be Thursday when I drop it off.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Enjoy

Here's a song I'd like to learn on the guitar, but I probably won't. It is difficult.

But there's a lot of nostalgia in this tune for me.

I hope you enjoy.


Sick, Well, Church, FAST

The fires continue. Wednesday I got sick. Puking, aching, get a bucket-and-go-to-bed sick. Dawn held Wed. School with the lower level, but I canceled my class. Thank you, Dawn, for trooping down here for the class.

Thursday I had hoped to do some visits. But I was still too sick. It really ticked me off. I know..."take some more vitamin B, Joe. It will calm you." At least I could hold stuff down, even if I still had to be 20 minutes from a bathroom.

Friday I was still achy and needed a bathroom. But it was warm out, so I spent time cleaning the garage. Most of the kids helped with that quite a bit. But I was surprised to see how much of our stuff was scattered all over the church yard! I guess the 3 ambulatory kids under 6 didn't quite get "clean-up" too well. Mary wanted to walk, so I walked with her. But at about a 1/4 of a mile my gut started hurting. I turned back well before Mary did.

Saturday morning I still felt achy, during the night Donna and Stella were up and crying most of the night. Mary and I fielded taking care of them through the night. So, my eyes were a bit bloodshot when I held worship at Mt. Olive. The sermon this week of Cantatae was on the Gospel, John 16:5-15 and the nature of the Holy Spirit given in Jesus' promise to the Apostles. The focus was on Christ's words that the Holy Spirit would take of what is Christ's and make it known to the Apostles and the Church. The focus of our salvation is always Christ's vicarious life and atonement.

Saturday afternoon we did some more on the garage cleaning, I stayed near a bathroom, but I was getting better.

Sunday we had worship at St. Petri, Oak Park, and Nazareth. After that 86 mile commute I ate a quick bite of lunch and went to the Pennington County Sportsmen's Club. It was time for FAST (Fire Arms Safety Training) Range day.

It was a wonderful day of teaching. I think of this volunteer work as a kind of mini-vacation from my regular work schedule. But I was pretty dragged out when I got home.

I have no illusions about my own ability to make mistakes. So as I went to the range, the following video was running through my head.
Yes, this really happened. I feel bad for the DEA agent, but if you look at how he handles the weapon, he is acting irresponsibly. The fact that live ammunition was brought to such a demonstration is a big problem. If the gun was emptied and disassembled before going to the class this could not have happened. Each of the agents that examined the handgun failed to look for a cartridge that might be stuck in the chamber. The agent waved the muzzle of the pistol around. The agent's finger was on the trigger. A big no-no in FAST. And when he had shot himself in the foot he should have sought medical attention right away. It is very easy to bleed to death from a foot wound. Instead, he gimps about and tries to show another weapon. Panic starts among the kids.

I think I would have panicked too. "Listen, this is an empty weapon." "Put it away." "You said that with the other one."


Our range day was safe and good, if a bit cold, windy, and cloudy. The sun came out when it was all done. The kids learned by experience to use a rifle, how to handle it at obstacles, and entering and exiting a tree stand. They learned how to clean the weapon. And they had some pretty large hot dogs to eat.

Red, Brent, John, and Jim, it's a pleasure to work with you all. I look forward to the next session.

This evening, as I was coming over to work on my assignment for Winkel tomorrow the Passover moon was rising. Sorry the photo isn't better, but I don't have enough money to spend on the best digital camera. I might put my Winkel assignment on diatheke. We'll see.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Phone Fraud on the climb

I just got three scam calls in a row this afternoon. So I did some looking. In the hope that this information can help keep you from being defrauded, here it is.

Some scam numbers are known. These are just a few, but they are used a lot:
caller id: 407 207 0820 from Orlando, FL
caller id: 850-475-5122 from Pensacola, FL
caller id: 442-074-144370 foreign
caller id: 442-074-618904 foreign

Here are some samples of the scams:

recorded voice: "Hello, this is your local phone company. We've noticed that your long distance bill is.....Please press one to have your account changed to the new plan." I talked a long time to GVTel after I got off the phone with this scam. They were very interested in following it up.

recorded voice: "Hi, this is Heather at Account Services," "Ashley Brown," or "Jonathan at Consumer Services"" calling about your credit card account. There's no problem, but you need to act now to get lower interest rates [ ... ] press 1 to talk to a representative."



Also: "Hi. This is Kelly at credit card services. I'm calling with an important announcement about your credit card account. This is our third attempt at reaching you. Our records indicate that you have been overpaying interest. Right now, we have you qualified to reduce your interest payment. To as low as two point nine percent. And cut your monthly payments in half. If you want to cut your monthly payment, lower your interest rate, and consolidate to one monthly payment, press one now. Again, this is your final chance to participate. So press one now. Or press three to be removed."


Or: claiming to be "United Debt Aid," or "Cardholder Services"

Or: Wanting to extend warranty on automobiles... press 1 to talk to customer service rep, press 9 to have phone number removed from offer. Often they say in the recording that they sent you several mail notices regarding the warranty on your car.

For example: Woman's voice: "Please listen carefully. This is an important notice regarding your automobile. We recently mailed you a postcard to activate your extended warranty coverage. This courtesy call is your final notice that your vehicle will be removed from our system. This means the opportunity to activate your extended warranty coverage at deeply discounted rates will be lost. To speak with an agent regarding your options before the deadline, please press one now. If you wish to permanently remove your vehicle from eligibility for future coverage, press three now."



Another example: Woman's voice: "This is an important message regarding your automotive warranty. We have made several attempts to reach you. This is your final courtesy call before your vehicle is reclassified. Press one to speak to a warranty specialist or press two and your file will be automatically be closed."

Or: the victim receives a phone call from a male caller impersonating the victim’s grandson. The caller reports that he is in Canada on an ice fishing trip and has been arrested for unknowingly trespassing on an Indian Reservation. The caller reports he is in need of bond money in order to be released from jail. The caller directs the victim to go to a local Western Union or MoneyGram and wire $3,500 to a location in Canada. The caller indicates that the Canadian Police will escort him to pick up the money.

Or: the victim is asked for paypal username and password to "clear up some problems".

Or a Mortgage scam: "Hi. This is Amy. You may be unaware that the feds have again dropped rates in order to help alleviate the mortgage crisis. The U.S. department of housing and urban development is offering government-insured loans through FHA with competitive interest rates that are easy to qualify for. In addition, Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac, congressionally chartered institutions, have also taken action. These institutions are offering thirty year, fixed rate mortgages without prepayment penalties that will give you and your family long-term security. Because of the government's effort, interest rates have not been this low since two thousand five. Press one now to be connected to a select cluss(?) representative to learn more about these programs. Press nine to be placed on our do-not-call list. Again, press one now to hear how you can take advantage of these government-sponsored programs."

Or "A friend entered your name": Woman's voice: "Hello. Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Wal-Mart, and even Target now have their spring displays up. Recently a friend or family member who visited one of these stores entered your name at the vacation kiosk. For a chance to receive twenty-six hundred dollars towards a fabulous all-inclusive resort vacation. Congratulations. Your name was selected today to receive twenty-six hundred dollars towards a fabulous five day all-inclusive vacation to beautiful Costa Rica. Followed by an exciting six day Orlando Florida vacation to Walt Disney World. Including theme park tickets or rental car. Your accommodation for up to four people beer(?) our exclusive beach-side resort and casino. While you are our guests, you will enjoy all-you-can-eat meals, beer, wine, alcohol, along with touring the volcanoes, rain forests, and the incredible white sandy beaches. Press two now to receive your twenty-six hundred dollars towards this all-inclusive vacation. Don't miss out. Imagine you and your family enjoying free food and drink, sport fishing, snorkeling, horseback riding, plus the breath-taking wildlife Costa Rica is famous for. Press two now to enjoy all of this with your twenty-six hundred dollars towards this all-inclusive resort vacation."

Don't give these people anything. Just hang up. If you want to do something that takes a lot of work contact the FTC, or the FCC. It probably won't stop the calls, but it will remind them that they are supposed to be doing their jobs.

There is a helpful, funny, but a bit coarse website called Telemarketers Keep Calling Me. The owner of that site has made most of these transcriptions. And I thank him for these transcriptions. We've all received these calls.

If a recording calls, hang up. Don't press any buttons. Call the phone company and report it. If you have caller ID and want to see what others have said about the phone number you can probably look it up at whocalled.us.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Tina, The Weekend

Tina was only 40 years old when she died this week. She had a difficult life with drug addiction. In the past 16 months I've buried her great uncle, Wilie; her great aunt, Adeline; Her mother, Yvonne; and her grandfather, Bert. Her great aunt Ella also passed away early this year. This family has been visited a great many losses.

I was able to talk with Tina and help walk her through the Law and the Gospel, to understand the grace of God in Christ. Her aunt, Karen, was able to share this with her more as Tina's body was failing due to Hepatitis.

Both Karen and I trust the confession of faith that Tina made to each of us. It may be very difficult for people who didn't have these conversations with her to think of her as being forgiven. After all, she didn't lead an exemplary life. But what could we say about the thief on the cross next to Christ? Did he have time to do anything to make up for his life? No. It is faith in the forgiveness of Christ alone that justifies before God.

Please keep Tina's family in your prayers. I led a memorial service for her at the funeral home in Thief River on Saturday.

The previous Thursday I had visits and had to cut them short a bit because of a gluten reaction. I think it was gluten in the smoke from the deep fry that did me in. Clara and Sophie came with me on the visits. Of course, where we stopped they were given way way too much candy.

Friday was double sermon prep: one for the regular services on Saturday and Sunday, and one for Tina's memorial service.

Saturday we had worship and Saturday School at Mt. Olive. The kids in Sat. School were eager for me to stop shaking the hands after church so they could show me something.

After I put my robe away they all quickly lined up by the rail and told me they had memorized the first verse of Holy Holy Holy this week. Then they sang it. It was great. They said that they were sorry they didn't get the second one memorized and asked me to help them with the difficult words.

Pastors and Sunday School teachers, how often does this happen? Wow. It was great. Good job girls!

Saturday before noon I went up to TR for the memorial service at 1pm. I got home about 3:30 or so.

I totally forgot about Confirmation class with my autistic student. Drat! But we rescheduled for Sunday evening.

At home on saturday, John (4 years old) was studying up on how to play and win at Chess. Look out Uncle Dave! He's catching on.

Sunday we had worship at St. Petri-with several visitors. The sunday school kids sang wonderfully at Oak Park for the opening hymn. And I got to Oak park late and Nazareth even later.

What was the problem, mainly I didn't have enough prep time to make my sermon shorter. It was about 22 minutes long. I know the old Norwegian pastors could preach for 45 minutes or so. But I'm not an old Norwegian pastor (yet). But for the most part, everyone seemed to do fine keeping awake and following the distinctions the Scripture makes between the suffering we cause to ourselves by sinning; the suffering that comes upon us not because we sin, but because we are sinful; and the cross laid on us because we bear the name and word of Christ as Christians.

I didn't get home til 1pm.

I slept a bit in the afternoon. And later on I went out to do some target practice with my .22 revolver. I inherited this pistol from my brother when he died. So I do think of it as a special memento. It's a Taurus 94B.

Over the years up here we've used it at the Clearwater Youthgroup Annual Shootout. I suppose 3,000 plus rounds have gone through it in the last 5 years.

I shot probably around 90 rounds today, then it broke.

It didn't explode or break in a dangerous way. The transfer bar broke off at its base, and it could no longer fire.

I'll have to send it back to Taurus for repair. According to their warranty they will fix it for free. We'll see. I hope so.

It's been a good revolver.

I went over to Confirmation class at 7pm for about 2 hours of discussion with my student and his parents. On the way home I saw that the burning was taking place.

Every spring the prairie burns. Two weeks ago it was burning over by the Reservation. Lately the burning has been going on in our area.

These are controlled fires set to get rid of brush and built up grasses in the ditches and on the fields. Sometimes there are firebugs that go around burning land and causing problems. But for the most part everything is in control.

The kids were mesmerized by it and wanted to watch the fire rather than go to bed. This fire is about a mile away from our house along a ditch line on the north side of the Clearwater River.

Tomorrow we sign our taxes and I take my Taurus to a dealer so they can send it to the factory for the "free" repair.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Finishing up the new room

Monday and Tuesday I finished painting the new bedroom downstairs.

Elsie wanted a loopy pattern around the top of the room.

So I sat down with her and Clara to see what they meant. After a few drawings I made a stencil.

All in all I think it turned out ok.


It looks kind of "hand- craft-ish"
I think. But it's not unpleasant. More to the point, the girls loved it. They probably don't love it enough to motivate them to keep their new room clean. We'll see about that.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Thaw; Baptism; Confirmation

The snow is going away. This past weekend we were threatened by a possible storm. Most of it went south of us.

Saturday we had Worship at Mt. Olive. I had three versions of my sermon ready for Good Shepherd Sunday this weekend because, of the four services, there was a baptism at one, and a confirmation at another. I thought it would be more appropriate to tailor the sermons at those two congregations toward those events.

We started Sunday out at Oak Park with Communion, then to Nazareth for Eli M's baptism. Eli's family is so wonderful. I wasn't able to stay for the meal because of the third worship service at St. Petri. Please keep Eli in your prayers and thank God for the wonderful gift of forgiveness and faith in Christ through God's covenant in Baptism.

At St. Petri it was time to let Shane know that I'm through with him in confirmation class! It sure is good to have him as a student. He always knows his work, even when he thinks he doesn't.

Now, he is ready to take responsibility for his own self-examination before the Lord's Supper. May God keep him through this life in the Means of Grace. Please keep him in your prayers as well.

Evelyn G. was hospitalized over the weekend. She had severe pain and then a serious reaction to the medications that were given to her. She seems to be recovering fairly well. Please keep her in your prayers.

Mary asked me to stop and take a photo of this house. There's a mystery of imagined memories around houses like this. What stories surround them? They once held a family, possibly several families, for generations. Now they are empty and decaying. A good reminder that we have no permanent home here in this world.

But we do have a permanent home with God the Father in the Resurrection of the Flesh because of Christ's life, death, and resurrection. He is Risen! He is Risen Indeed!

Friday, April 04, 2008

Spring and Swans

Swans: Tundra and Trumpeter come here each spring. So, Spring is here. I'm sure that we will have another snowstorm soon, but still, Spring is here.

It's a nice feeling. Getting out without a coat or parka rated to -20 degrees F.

The Sandhill Cranes have started to arrive up here. We can hear their whooping call all day.

The faith plods on. We have members that have new and old diagnoses of Cancer and whatever disease you want to bring up. But the members endure because of Christ's endurance on the Cross. This He gave to them in their baptisms.

Arminians of every stripe will have a hard time figuring out the last point. But it is simply this. God's Word is His Word. He does not go back on His Word. Since He made the Promises in Absolution (John 20), Baptism (Mt. 18), and the Lord's Supper (Mt. 26, I Cor 11) we trust him. Unlike the Arminians, we think God can hold true to His Promise.

Happy Spring. You should, perhaps, study Jacob Arminius and Charles and John Wesley.

But the main issue is whether or not there is such a thing as an ability to decide for Christ.

Lutherans deny this simply because the Bible speaks so strongly about the inherited sinful nature. Arminians hope that humans can do something positive by which they could save themselves. So their salvation is no longer by the Grace of God Alone.

And that is sad.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

End of the vacation-etc., a post after the fact

Attentive readers will notice that I changed a couple of dates in the last few posts. The reason for this is that Mary corrected my own incorrect recollection of which day things happened. I'm a bit calindrically impaired. That's the main reason I have to look at the church calendar each Sunday to know where I'm supposed to at what time.

Well, as far as our vacation, after the Mongolian grill we went to Scheels Sporting goods in Fargo. The kids posed at several wax-museum quality figures of the Presidents of the U.S. of A. I liked this one of them with Ronald Reagan. I'd like to think that Pres. Reagan would enjoy the fun of having two kids in a shopping cart. "How much were they?" "They were half-priced, quiet a deal!" Just imagine, two kids who can grow up to pay Social Security so Mary and I can get old without worries.

After Scheels we went to the Fargo Air Museum. I'd encourage you to to to their website to see what they have to offer. I think the kids enjoyed it. Even Donna seemed happy all the time. Though this was probably due more to a recent feeding and a clean diaper than to the displays!

The kids sat in the DC3. This was the only aircraft that we could explore inside and out.

The aircraft was entered at the tail. and it was a steep 15 or 20 degree incline toward the pilot's cabin. There was much running up and down the isle.


I got everyone but Louisa to stand for a photo next to one of the aircraft.

I have a dad's sentiment that family photos are somehow nice. The kids seem to disagree.

But here are most of the kids.

The museum also has a Japanese Zero that they take out each year for flight. Take a look at the link to the story about this aircraft and its original pilot, Shigemi. It's worth the time to read it.

My grandfather on my mother's side was involved in the Japanese theater during WWII. He was part of the Marine Corps division that took the island of Tarawa and Saipan. I've recorded some of his memories about his experiences in WWII. Hopefully, I will put them up on Joedidley in the left side of the blog for others to hear.

We got home on Thursday evening (3/27). When we went through our mail I found out that I had become a certified fire arms instructor for the state of Minnesota. The DNR even sent me an iron on patch so I could look official.

From the last post you know about Evelyn and Darrow. There are others in our congregations facing serious issues. Please keep us all in your prayers.

Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday were filled with preparations, writing, fire arms safety courses, and all kinds of other stuff.

Just as an odd note: I brought my Springfield XD-9, my Savage double barrel 20 gauge, Matt's Remington single shot and Mossberg 500C 20 gauge shotguns, with Darrow's Winchester '94 30-30. The students seemed to gravitate toward the Savage and the XD-9.

We had Wed. School today. And my confirmands were able to answer from the Catechism very well, and they were able to ask good questions and look up the answers in the Bible. I guess I'd consider that a pretty good day.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Backdating frustration

I just spent an hour trying to post the summary of our vacation.

I'm sorry it's not done. There were some problems with the net and saving to the blog website.

I'll have to rewrite what I wrote-GRRRRR!

I want to catch you all up on the end of our trip. But I'll have to do it as time allows.

In summary, we had fun; we got rested; we got home; Lonny's recovering from his surgery; Darrow had another Chemotherapy and it went well; Darrow's arm is still a problem where the first chemo burned him. Evelyn G. is in the hospital and had a serious reaction to pain medication-please keep her in your prayers; I got my certification as a Minnesota DNR Firearms instructor; I have been teaching this week in a Firearms Safety course in Thief River; Hospital calls; kids who like to hide milk in their toys; finishing an installation of a new light; fixing a diaper changing table wrecked by our toddlers; whatever else.........

Good night.