Begun January 22, 2013 with a brief reach back.
2017-03-06 The van didn’t work this morning. It wasn’t the battery because that was turning over, but the van would just not ignite. Tried it later in the day, same thing. Dana put a charger on it, because he was afraid our attempts may have drained the battery some. Our best guess was that we would have to have the van towed to the garage and being out of town, we knew that would really add to our repair costs. So as a last attempt, around 9:30p, Dana went out to try it again, and wonderfully, the van started so we were able to drive it (not have it towed) to the garage!
2017-01 A local business needs space for a special project. They’ve rented a portion of our business’ building for at least six months.
2016-12-26 Another blizzard as a grace (see below)? A Christmas Day/night ice storm followed by blizzard weather which closed many of the ND/MN highways caused our out-of-town kiddos to get to stay another day with us before heading back home. Each that needed it were able to get their work shifts covered which was an added grace. After the busyness of Christmas Eve/Day it was so nice to spend the day just playing games and enjoying each other’s company… and with leftovers, there was no cooking (now that is a grace upon grace)!
2016-12-12 A winter blizzard and being sick doesn’t sound much like a grace, but it was this year. After Ashley left (see below), we had a two-day blizzard which caused school to be cancelled. Now a snow day at home when all are safe inside is always especially welcome, but at this time of the month, it really helped me get a few of those have-to’s off my plate. Then on the tail of our blizzard I got a bad case of laryngitis with a bit of a cold along with it. I don’t think I’ve ever lost my voice for that long (over a long weekend). Except for needing more sleep, I felt relatively well – just couldn’t teach, so I was able to get a few more things done while at home (like a little Christmas baking which is always an afterthought for me).
2016-12-04 We don’t get to see our FL family very much, but we were blessed to have our daughter home (sorry Andrew that you had to work) and their three children (ages 4-1/2, 2-1/4, and 6 mo) with us for a busy and joyful week. I know it’s such a sacrifice for Ashley to handle her three while she parents from a suitcase, not to mention car travel to get here and a plane trip home with all, but we are grateful, grateful for her willingness to help us make memories with her beautiful kiddos. To hear the older two recite Matthew 5 just melted my heart. Andrew and Ashley, thank you for giving our grandchildren such a good foundation! Father, please continue to draw their little hearts to you and may Calvin, Lewis, and Lucy know You and walk near You all their days. Amen.
2016-10-09 Four gifts of provision in one week for which we are giving thanks!
(1) My daughter’s car needed a new serpentine belt and water pump. We’d just replaced the water pump on our van which ended up costing us ~$200. One of my daughter’s classmates at the Christian college she attends works at a garage and invited her to bring it in. When she went to pick it up, she was told that the cost for belt, pump, and labor would be under $50! She gently protested – we were glad to pay a fair price, glad to have found a shop in which we could trust. She was gently told that the owner had considered this decision and desired to do this for her! We have been so blessed to see God at work, providing for our daughter’s needs when she is so far from us.
(2) Our other daughter and her family live on the eastern seaboard in southern Florida – just where Hurricane Matthew was destined to make landfall as a category 4 hurricane. Not being from FL or familiar with hurricane preparations, they followed the lead of those native to the area. They metal shuttered their windows, bought their food and water, prepared themselves for an electrical outage, but stayed put in town as others were doing. What relief to find as the wind blew out of the area in the wee hours of the morning, September 7th, that they had been spared all damages along as had others in their church family. Before the storm, my daughter was talking to their oldest son, Calvin (age 4), she reminded him that ours is the same God who made all things, walked on the water, and commanded it to be still. She preached to me as well as Calvin when she said we must speak to our hearts, “Be still my soul, the winds and waves still know his voice that rules them while he dwelt below.” She later wrote, “Our hope is in Christ; on Him we rest and build our house upon the Rock of our salvation.”
(3) Regarding our business – At the end of a particularly difficult week, a much needed and awaited order and payment came from Manila in the Philippians.
(4) Dana and I have been so blessed and humbled as our children have grown and moved away to see tangible evidences of Christ working in them and speaking to them and in turn through them as they appropriately counsel us in Kingdom matters. I received no less than three fitly spoken words of wisdom and understanding this week from my children.
2016-09-10 Within the last week, Dana and I have been able to have extended phone or Face Time conversations with our four children and their families. As I finished the fourth visit today, I was overwhelmed with gratitude to God for his loving-kindness in their lives. I am thankful that they all belong to him and thankful for how God is so obviously working in their lives and on their behalf. It is such a blessing to not only hear wisdom and understanding come from their hearts and lips, but to also have them apply and impart wisdom to us, their parents. We rejoice to hear them rightly divide the Word of Truth as they seek to walk in a manner worthy of their calling. May God grant the increase in their years ahead for their own sakes and for those in their spheres of influence.
2016-05-09 As I drove to work today I was graced to see two Canadian geese (which I took to be mommy and papa) with their five fluffy pale-colored goslings before them out for a morning stroll in the grasses along the bank of a holding pond I pass each day.
2016-05 Oh the glorious day the screens go up so the windows can be opened to the joyous smell of Dana’s newly-mown grass and the welcome sound of the morning birds singing their psalms to their Creator!
2016-04-16 Dana and I were stunned to find out that we owed $3000. in taxes this year. We wondered how that could even be possible since I had only received a modest raise last year and Dana hasn’t seen a raise in at least a decade. Needless to say we were taken very much by surprise. From where would the money come, we wondered.
It wasn’t until a few days after making our payment, that I was looking at our budget. The Lord reminded me of an account that I have been adding to meant to repay ourselves for loans to the business. I realized that the money in this account would pay a good portion of those taxes! I was sorry to see that go, but I realized that God knew that we would need this money in a few years and compelled me a while back to begin setting some aside each month into a ready account – Jehovah Jireh, God our Provider!
2016-01 In 2015, our company saw its first profit since 2005. We can only attribute our presence still to our Lord’s gracious interventions and his sustaining grace.
2016-01-01 The good Lord has seen fit to bring my family through another year and to set our feet upon the brand new soil of 2016. I know in this new land, my King stands ready to provide us with his graces for each new day, for each joyous celebration, and for each challenge He designs for us.
2015-07-15 This is small, but I was very impressed with the kindness of God in this… Last week, I ordered some simple centerpieces for the GF reception to celebrate Seth and Joy’s marriage. In tracking the package the centerpieces were scheduled to be delivered tomorrow (the day of the reception) by the end of the day. I was making plans for an alternative centerpiece, but UPS pulled in this afternoon delivering the centerpieces! [They needed quite a lot of ironing, so getting them tomorrow would not have given us the time we needed to use these.] Isn’t that kind of God?
2015-07-08 Telpro was in discussion with a local business for a large, defining order of 24-28 platforms. Unfortunately, the business’s manager was unable to attain funding, so he regretfully asked for a bid for 30 small, standard platforms. Deeply disappointed, Dana was in the process of putting together a bid to serve this company (for which he’d be vying against two others for the business). After two days of working up a bid, the manager called and said he had made a strong last case to those in power at his company for the large, custom platforms. To all of our amazement his bosses approved the large platforms… and not 24, not 30, but 32 platforms!
2015-06 All of our plans for Seth and Joy’s wedding, made over the course of six months (airline tickets, rental cars, rental home) were available for us without a lash up.
2015-05-15 Soon-to-be daughter-in-law, Joy, received her B.A. in History of Ideas from Bethlehem College and Seminary.
2015-05-15 Bryce received his B.A. in History of Ideas from Bethlehem College and Seminary.
Spring 2015 Dana has been greatly helped by Jeremiah Burroughs’ The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment.
2014-12-23 Seth was traveling home for Christmas, having worked until 6:00p this evening. Although our weather has been mild, even rainy (yes, rainy!) the last few days, it had become chillier and there was a thin layer of snow beginning to show (just in time for Christmas, some said). When Seth was just over an hour from home, he was driving on Interstate as he passed through the two cities on either side of the river that provides the state border.
After just crossing the river, the car ahead of Seth began to swerve, almost hitting the concrete meridian to the left, then swerving back, going into a skid that left her perpendicular to traffic, passenger side toward Seth. There was no time to change course. Seth hit the car between the front and back doors.
Although both of Seth’s airbags were deployed (making for a probably totaling of his car) and the cover of one went through his windshield (leaving a watermelon-sized hole), no one was hurt – Seth, driver and her passenger. Since it was late at night, the traffic was reduced, so there was not a car pile up like there could have been.
The girl was clearly the cause of the accident, so after getting Seth’s statement and his personal information, the policeman let Seth drive away (even with airbags deployed). In the next few days, the temperature would drop to below zero, but that night, with a box covering what could be covered of the hole in his windshield, Seth drove the 75 miles home without subzero temps in his car. He arrived after midnight, Christmas Eve day.
Although, a lot of mess and inconvenience still remains for Seth in figuring out his car options, it didn’t take much to realize that, but for the grace of God, we might have been spending a very different Christmas than we were able.
2014-12-13 Last night I was with a group of ladies and one began talking about the Christmas tree shortage this year. We often will get our tree the day after Thanksgiving, we’ve found the following weekend to be iffy as far as selections go, but the way things worked out, here we were, the third weekend after Thanksgiving and we were going to look for trees… with a tree shortage on top of it.
We went first to our usual purchase location – Lowes. They had about 8 trees, some very sparse until about 2.5 feet off the ground, others very short. We made a fast run across the street to Menards – the remains were in even worse shape! We called Home of Economy (they hadn’t ordered trees this year) and the lot outside the old Blockbuster was not in town this year either.
We determined we would go back to Lowes and get a small Charlie Brown tree and let it be a lesson to us. We were looking at the 8 trees along Lowes’ chain link fence when Dana turned around and saw a beautiful tree, all opened up, in a stand and sitting on a pallet (evidently a display model). We asked the man in charge if that tree were on sale and he said yes it was if we would buy the stand too. Well, last year Dana vowed to get a new stand because the screws would not tighten on some trunks so that tree would begin slipping over to one side at times. Buying the stand was no problem and what’s more? Getting to the check out we found out that the stand was on sale for 1/3 off.
We both just marveled at this grace. Once again, we got better than we deserved.
2014-11-10 Courtney has spent the past 2 months driving about an hour both ways, M-F, to rehearsals for a community theater performance of And Then There Were None (she played Vera Claythorne). Her performances began Halloween weekend and continued the following weekend through yesterday. The cast and crew then spent several hours in set strike yesterday before calling the run complete. Dana and I were able to go down this weekend to see the show with sister, Heide, and her husband, Charlie, and son, Noah, as well as Bryce and Seth and Joy – great fun.
Today, the very day after Courtney’s long commutes ceased, her area is preparing for the first snowfall of the year, and not just a dusting, but a potential for quite a lot of snow! I am so grateful that this first snowfall comes after Dana and I arrived safely home from the trip and after C’s extensive driving season. And since she has been driving on needy tires all fall, I’m grateful for travel mercies all season.
2014-11-2 Dana and I attended a Bridges seminar on how to understand and reach the Muslim for Christ. I was so blessed by day of instruction and testimony. God is moving in the 10/40 window and who knew that He would bring so many from those latitudes to our very communities. I pray that God will give me and his Church a boldness to share the life-giving truth of Jesus Christ with the Muslims in our communities.
2014-10-26 I have been having some back issues over the past several days, one day needle-like nerve sensations and yesterday, deep muscle aches in along the sides of my lower back. I knew we had all of this yard work planned and wondered if I’d just be stooped or find myself wincing all day, especially bent over flower beds, cutting and pruning.
Cutting my Barberry down can be a really hard job when the loppers bite into an old, thick, dead stalk among the younger shoots. It’s hard to explain, but it really causes you, in the middle of a lop to exert a tremendous amount of strain, almost like one experiences when trying to lift a particularly heavy shovel of snow. I began to consider the stress on my heart and asked God to use the work to strengthen me, not to weaken me (meaning my heart).
Well, good news… I did not have a cardiac issue yesterday (PTL), but I also began to realize that I was not feeling any aches or stress anymore in my back area. I wondered if I’d really pay for my labors later in the evening as is often the case, hours after the work is done. But amazingly, I continued to be without any pain free throughout the evening, while I slept, and throughout today.
“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21).
2014-10-25 We have had a l-o-n-g Indian summer in the Valley this fall. So good for the soul as we are all still bearing the memories of the very, very long and cold winter of 2013-2014.
After spending a beautiful Saturday last week in a Fargo movie theater, I was afraid we had missed our opportunity to get our fall yard work done in pleasant weather. I was wrong. Today was a wonderfully sunny/blue-sky day with very little wind. Dana and I, together, finished cleaning out the flower beds, getting the leaves off the yard, mowing/weed-whacking around the house one last time, putting our summer chairs and lanterns away, and hanging garland before the snow. We also got about halfway done with our window washing, before our long-handled squeegee broke. It looks like the weather is to become more seasonal by Tuesday or Wednesday, so maybe we can finish this up before then too.
What a joy to experience common grace today!
2014-10 Our little Calvin is learning the practices of the body of Christ. Dear Father, continue to draw his heart to yours and grant him new life in your Son.
2014-10-18 Le Nozze di Figaro (Met HD performance) – After Gilbert & Sullivan, this should be everyone’s first opera experience. Music and laughter, even in this fallen world… thank you, gracious God.
2014-10 Over the last month, I’ve been increasingly aware of my ability to use my left foot without the debilitating pain from the Plantar fasciitis I’ve experienced for over 1/2 year. Two weeks before the start of school I experienced some of my worst pain yet and wondered how I would do my job. God has kindly relieved that thorn in my flesh and I’ve increasingly felt my foot heal over this relatively short period. Yesterday, I took my students on a brisk, walking field trip to the city library and just praised the Lord as I was able to travel back and forth with very little discomfort. Oh, the simple joy of walking!
2014-08 Courtney headed back to school after taking a year off to work and earn money. The Lord has done a gracious and mighty work in her heart and spirit over the year she has been home. We are grateful for the time we had with her here and equally as grateful for the renewal of her spirit and studies.
2014-07-09 Dana and Larry in Saskatoon, SK, were able to observe first hand another example of the dominion that God has given to mankind as they traveled a kilometer under the earth to visit the Potash Corp. mines and to demonstrate Telpro’s DrillRite overhead drill press.
2014-07-06 Dana, making preparations for heading up to Canada for a business trip with brother, Larry, could not find his passport a-n-y-w-h-e-r-e in the house. He spent last night looking in every conceivable and inconceivable place, most more than once. Today, realizing that if God didn’t show him, he would not be going to Canada. He asked God to lead him to look in the right place to find his passport and God graciously directed Dana’s thoughts to look in his brief case and a leather wallet that he keeps in there which holds a paper pad. In a pocket of the wallet he found the passport, having stored it there when he made a day trip to Toronto last November.
2014-07-05 Seth, visiting in Oregon, asked Joy Elizabeth Schneider to marry him and she said yes! God so kindly worked out the details of the proposal (a crowd-less promontory along the Pacific Ocean coast at sunset before the tide came in).
2014 June 29 – July 3 All of the Alan and Eileen clan (their three children and two spouses and their four grandchildren) were able to travel home for the week. It is always nice to have brother Alan and sister-in-law, Eileen, home, and it is a nice blessing to be able to re-connect with their children and growing families now as they are adults.
2014-07-02 On a day when we were losing the Battle of Bedford Falls our children (and other family) stepped up to pray for us and encourage us from the word of God. In response, Dana referenced Proverbs 27:11 “Be wise, my son, and make my heart glad, that I may answer him who reproaches me.” He wrote later that day, “When I am under the reproach of the enemy who loves to get to be the one to sift me, I am blessed to be able to answer him that God’s grace and power are manifest in the lives of my children.” See how we are more than conquerors?
2014-07-01 Dana spent a happy day with Seth in Alexandria, MN, with the intent to bless him before his travels to Oregon and his plans there (see 07-05 above).
2014-05-23 I officially finished my 6th year of teaching (4th since returning to teaching in 2010). This year’s class was a large one for our school (16) with at least half of the students offering a challenge. I thank the Lord for his strength and equipping, as well as for giving me a teacher’s love for this class.
2014-May16-18 A joyous weekend spent with all of the family before sending Andrew, Ashley and Calvin off to their God-given assignment – a 2-year internship for Andrew with a PCA church in Florida. God speed, dear hearts.
2014-05-16 Our dear son-in-law, Andrew, graduated from Bethlehem College and Seminary tonight with his Masters of Divinity. What a beautiful, worshipful ceremony we enjoyed; so full of hope and assuredness because of the great, good Gospel of Jesus Christ.
2014- April 18-21 We spent a blessed Easter weekend at Andrew’s parents lake home in north central Minnesota. Everyone could be there – Dana and myself as well as Courtney, Bryce, Seth and his girlfriend, Joy, Ashley, Andrew, and Calvin. During the weekend we celebrated Courtney’s 20th birthday. The weekend included Rummikub, a nice big birthday breakfast Saturday morning, the kids going to see Captain America for Courtney’s birthday (Grammy and Grandad watching Calvin), a warmish Easter Sunday, going to church together Easter morning, a pipe smoke out for the guys, good food, and lots of laughs. All this and Easter too – a time to recall the greatest event of history and of our lives. Halleluiah, we serve a risen Savior!
2014-03-09 Below zero temperatures appear to have broken. We’re told that this winter is the 16 or 17th coldest winter on record for this area and March 1 broke the record for a coldest high for all Marches – minus 9 degrees. We could actually feel heat from the sun today and meridians are beginning to show more and more ground and the snow is looking tired and dimpled. I think we’re going to make it after all. ( : Thank you, Lord; great is thy faithfulness. “While the earth remains, seed time and harvest, cold and heat, SUMMER and winter, day and night, shall not cease” (Genesis 8:22).
2014-March 07-09 Praying Life seminar with Bob Allums at our church. Bob was here last year, too, and introduced us to the praying life. This year he revisited a bit of last year’s materials, but then challenged us further along our journeys. He, then, gave today’s Sunday message on Intercessory Prayer using John 17 as his text. The slogan of Praying Life seminars says it all: For wandering minds, nodding heads, and cynical hearts straining to pray.
2014-03-07 We’ve known about our precious blessing for some time, but Ashley and Andrew just announced the name of their yet-to-be met little boy, Lewis Eliot. He is due at the end of July/beginning of August.
2014-03-06 After irregular paychecks began December 31, 2013, we have had two 40-hour paychecks in a row, 1 last week and 1 this week.
2014-03-04 After 3 months of at least a couple lumpectomies and a double mastectomy, my cousin Conni (daughter of Aunt Rosalie and Uncle Jim) finally had some good news – her pathology looks clear and there is no lymph node involvement!
2014-02-02 Dana and I attended a four hour prayer gathering (8:00 – 12:00 noon) at Faith. I wondered if I’d be able to pray that long, but each hour was broken up a bit with hymn singing, brief teaching or challenge videos, and a new pray focus. It was a rich morning of repentance, supplication, and intercession followed by a warm meal of soup and fellowship. I fell asleep quite early that evening, exhausted mostly from crying so much that morning.
2014, January 18-19 Girls weekend in Alexandria with Ashley, Courtney, and sister, Heide at Hampton Inn. Wonderful weekend of antiquing and laughter!
2014-01-09 “Nothing to worry about; return to regular appointments” (see 06-17-13 below).
2014-01 Loyal and patient employees during a time of great difficulty.
2013-12 Christmas! All of our children were home for Christmas which included Courtney, of course (who was off work Christmas Eve and Christmas Day); Bryce, who was home on semester break stayed for ~3 weeks; Seth was here twice over Christmas week, both for Christmas and the New Year; and Ashley, Andrew, and little Calvin were with us for a wonderful week!
2013-12-05 The gracious, godly influence of my Aunt Bev in our lives (08-08-33 to 12-05-13). See December 4, 2013, blog post.
2013-11-23 The gracious, godly influence of Dana’s Uncle Dick Young in our lives (09-27-19 to 11-23-13). See November 23, 2013, blog post.
2013-09-13 Courtney, home to earn money for her schooling, found a wonderful full-time job with benefits. It was grace that I work with a mom whose son works there and recommended C even without knowing her!
2013-08-08 Sister, Heide, and I walked the old neighborhood in town, reminiscing and trying to remember the neighbor’s names. We walked to Ben Franklin elementary (two blocks away) and found it open! Wondering the halls we noticed the their several display windows were decked out for some school anniversary and were filled with stories of the January 1961 opening. There were many, many old black and white photos and newspaper articles of faces and names that we remembered from our elementary days. The trip down memory lane was so soul-satisfying and it made me grateful for the childhood I was given.
2013-08-13 Sunny, warm day with whole family at Bluewater (D, K, S, C, B, and A/A, C & ?).
2013-08-01 My dad (1940 – )
2013-07-31 My mom (1942-2004).
2013-07-14 Another year of grace.
2013-06-20 Iran Alive Ministries and the reported ready harvest in Iran.
2013-06-17 A report of “believe to be benign” for a second follow-up mammogram and ultrasound.
2013-06-16 (Father’s Day) Dana, the father of my children; also my own dear dad, Ray, and Dana’s dad, Rol.
2013-06 Our week with Calvin in ND.
2013-05-29 Calvin Taylor turns one.
2013-04-19 Another year of grace.
2013-03-18 Ashley & Andrew close on their first home.
2013-03-18 Snow day–no school! Particularly needed as I have conferences Thursday, we help A/A move this weekend, and I have week 3 coursework (Daily Cafe) due.
2013-03-09 Praying Life seminar–hope!
2013-02-17 After over two and a half years away from the church at which we spent 25 years, our membership is official now at Faith Evangelical Free Church where we have found both fellowship and kinship.
2013-02-11 Snow day–no school!
2013-02-10 As our tractor snow blower has given out on us this year, we hoped that we might get through another winter like last year’s and perhaps not need to plow. But big, wet snow was forecast for this weekend after all. We were blessed when my dad offered his Long tractor with a front loader and Dana was able to drive it home yesterday in 40 degree weather (despite the very cold month we’ve had). I am personally blessed by my husband who braves cold and wind and cleared out our long driveway today.
2013-02-06 Ashley and Andrew got word that their offer on a house went through.
2013-01-22 I am so grateful and blessed to be able to have Lisa come every other week for two hours at a time to help me with my housekeeping during the school year. It is such a joy to me when she comes and it relieves my tensions about the state of my house during those busy months of teaching.
2013-01-22 I happened to wake up last night ~4:30a and noted that our atomic clock read -21° F. and it still was -21 below this morning as I got ready to head to school and yet we were warm in our home and in our beds all night.
2013-01-22 The wonderful sound of the horned owls down in the woods last night around midnight as they called to each other.
2012-12-14 Ashley received her B.A. in Vocal Music Education from the North Dakota State University College of Music.
2012-09-15 After the death of his 2nd wife, Luella, on August 26, 2010, my dad has married Judy Anderson (widow) of Grafton, ND.
2012-05-12 Seth received his B.F.A. in Illustration from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design.
2010-11-06 Andrew Leo Jacobson asked Ashley to marry him and she said yes!
2006-09-30 After my mom’s November 3, 2004, death, my dad has married Luella Shumacher (widow) of Reynolds, ND.
1984-07-14 Kimberly Rae LeClerc married Dana Scott Young at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Grand Forks, ND.