Thursday, April 23, 2009

My friend Rachel

My friend Rachel died suddenly and tragically this weekend, a blood clot took her life quickly and without warning.

Rachel and I first met when I was ten and attended boarding school together, living together in the same dorm for five years. Though we were a grade apart we were nearly always in the same classroom together. There were only about eight of us at that boarding school and Rachel was truly like a sister to me. After leaving the school and moving on our different ways we remained pen pals through high school and we've more recently kept in touch through our blogs with occasional comments back and forth. Because of our shared experiences growing up together Rachel's notes have always been meaningful.

I loved reading Rachel's blog posts, they were encouraging to me because she so clearly loved God, her husband and her children. I will miss her updates. And I feel so deeply for the loss Scott and the children are feeling now, I can't even imagine what that would be like. I am having a hard time understanding why things like this happen in our world, but I do know that Rachel touched many lives, including mine.

I pulled out the "Indonesia" pictures a few days ago. There was Rachel participating in my silly school presentations about rocket launches and nuclear power plants. Rachel was always there, interested in my crazy inventions. She was the first "customer" of the dorm phone system I wired together. Rachel validated my quirky interests and looking back I see how valuable her input was in my life.

Just a week before her death Rachel along with her husband Scott were rejoicing in the birth of their 3rd child, Caynah Grace ("Powerful Grace"). In describing the name she said "I know Who has a Powerful Grace and I wanted my daughter to be 'labeled' with our Lord." How profound that is now.

Rachel leaves behind two other children, Aleah and Bruce.

Scott, I have never met you but I know you are a great man and I'm praying for you, I'm so sorry for your loss. May God bring a powerful grace to you. Your farewell to Rachel is beautiful. Joshua, Caleb, Mr. and Mrs. Allen, you are all in my heart and prayers as well.

Goodbye Rachel. May you bring special blessing to God!

- Adriel

Monday, April 13, 2009

Garden Project

This year we decided to significantly expand our garden. Apparently we're not the only ones! Here's our progress so far: 

A new fence divides off the garden area from the rest of the backyard. The fence is about 50 feet long.

Morpheus - The reason for the fence.

Looking from the new "mini-orchard" back toward the garden and the house. We have two apple trees, a pear tree, a cherry tree and a peach tree. Next year we hope to get some benches and a fire pit to put in this area, it should make a nice backyard retreat.

The fenced-in mud pit which will become the garden, hopefully over the next few weeks.

A new cold frame with the very first set of semi-mature sprouts acclimating to their new environment. I'll build a second cold frame in the fall and we hope to grow lettuce, carrots and peas in both cold frames late into the year.

It has been a lot of work but everyone has been pitching in. David has been hauling bark dust continuously. Abigail did a great job holding a light for me late into Saturday night as I assembled the cold frame this weekend. Even miriam has been trucking bark dust in her wagon.

- Adriel

Sunday, April 12, 2009


The girls and I went to the church's Easter egg hunt on Saturday.  It was more like an egg pick -up than a hunt but they had a great time and major sugar over load.

Today Adriel's parents came to church with us and then we all had lunch together back at the house.  It was nice and very quiet.  Adriel's dad is sill hooked up to the chemo pump so it was a nice surprise that he was feeling well enough to get out.  It was a special time with them and we look forward to seeing Adriel's sister Anna and her family in about a week.  They will be here for a visit and we will get to meet our Nephew for the first time!


Saturday, April 11, 2009

Weekly Report- Week twenty-eight 2008-09

I just got new batteries for the camera so there are no pictures from the last couple of weeks yet.  I would like to say that I will take pictures of things and then edit this entry but I think we all know that, that is a long shot.

Here is the run down.  We had a box day.  Inevitably, in the late winter everyone is bored of school, we have found a few things that are no longer working and we really need some extra resources to keep things moving.  By early Spring I have ordered something and so - box day comes.  I beefed up my order a bit with a few things that I know we won't use until Fall like the extra Pathway Readers and some fancy colored pencils so that I could get free shipping from Rainbow.  Other things we will start now and finish this Summer or by Christmas.  Abigail tends to bump up a math level sometime between January and March.  Even a new math book can be exciting this time of year.

David got a Science Timeline book that is interesting now and will be used for the next few years as well.  Abigail is doing Minimus Latin and the level 2 WWE workbook.  I was able to get a set of pathway readers used for an excellent price.  She is reading one now and enjoying the sweet stories.  The others with their workbooks will wait for Fall or later.  I have learned to never leave the little ones out of box day unless you want full scale mutiny so Miriam got a little package of Lauri toys that kept her busy all week.  Those will be useful for years to come!

This week David wrote his first big research report this week, the boys are working on the future tense verbs in Latin and Abigail is mad because I am making her memorize her multiplication tables.  That about sums it up.