For those wanting to know arrangements for Mama Ruby’s Celebration of Life Service, it will be
Saturday, January 27, 2018 at Memory Chapel Funeral Home, 2200 Skyland Blvd E, Tuscaloosa, AL 35405. Visitation 12:00 noon and service 1:00 pm. In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial donations to First United Methodist Church, Tuscaloosa, AL, Lee Sunday School Class, or Discovery Ministries, Inc, c/o First United Methodist Church, Tuscaloosa, AL, or Caring Days Adult Day Care, 943 31st St E, Tuscaloosa, AL 35405.
Thank you all for your emails, texts, calls and most importantly your prayers. It means more than you will ever know.
We left Enterprise about 10:00 this morning after a loving send off by our team. We are currently spending the night in the Lowe’s parking lot in Troy, Alabama. Anne’s mom had another stroke this morning and is now experiencing the joys of heaven. We are only about three hours from Mama Ruby’s house but are too tired to go any further. This will give us a quiet night together before we have to face everything tomorrow. The blog may be quiet for a few days. We would appreciate your prayers for our family.
It started raining during the night and was still raining when we got up this morning. It also never really cooled of last night. It was 66 this morning. The rain stopped by about 8:00 and slowly the clouds departed and we had another beautiful day. It was 78 when we stopped for lunch and we don’t know the high but it was hot working out in the sun today. Yep, this time last week we were complaining about being too cold. We will not complain about the heat. We are having beautiful weather, even if we are sweating.
Ruth and Mike brought us another great devotion this morning which was based on the story of Shadrack, Meshach, and Abednego. They reminded us that in good times or bad God is always with us and for us. Ruth and Mike always end their devotion time with a little funny. Today’s was so funny we all continued to laugh even after we should have stopped. We will have to see if we can get a copy of that one and share with you.
Max, Anne and Mike started the day cleaning up all the left over wood and supplies at the water treatment plant. After returning everything to the maintenance building we began gathering supplies for our next project. We will be laying some brick at a house that was converted to an early childhood center. A garage door was removed and the garage made into a classroom. We laid the first course of brick today and are letting it setup overnight and will continue tomorrow. Another new skill.
Jo, Mark and Chris continued to work on removing the old fence and cleaning up around the new fence. This was another big and hot job. They made great progress on that project today. Ruth, Kathy, Carol and Laura were back working on the front porch a one of the cottages. Another hot job today but one we think they completed. Bob worked on refinishing a couple of signs for the picnic pavilion and then worked on lights with Lee. We all again stayed very busy, especially Kathy and Terry, just keeping the 12 of us headed in the right direction, keeping us in supplies and answering calls for assistance. We are making good progress but will continue to have to push to complete everything by noon on Thursday.
After work today we rode back out to check on the eagles. We only saw one of the parents today. We suspect there are babies in the nest based on the various nest cameras in other areas but we didn’t see the parents bring any food back to the nest or any activity other than one eagle sitting in the nest with its head barely visible. We didn’t stay out at the nest very long and then rode back to Green Springs park. This time we decided to visit the park’s namesake spring. Yep, it’s a green spring. Real green, and somewhat smaller than we expected. But it’s a nice little park and worth the stop.
By the way, Mama Ruby, Anne’s mom, is sick and we would appreciate your prayers for her.
Another wonderful day in Florida. This is what you hope far when you plan a winter trip here. It was 55 when we got up this morning, with heavy fog in the area but none right around us. By lunch it was 80 degrees with sunshine and some scattered clouds. Love it!
After another good devotion by Kathy and Terry, we all headed back out to work. Today Max and Anne were assigned to the water treatment plant to work on finishing up the final items. We installed fascia boards on the shed along with the drip edge. We also repaired a gate to the treatment plant. The final (for now) job was the completion of the roof repairs to the metal roof on the generator building. Kathy and Jo also painted the pumphouse today. It looks so nice. Lots of team members contributed to that structure and it is now complete.
Mike and Chris replaced some outside light fixtures at one of the cottages and continued their work in the chapel. Don’t think they are quite through there but are in the clean up stage. Lee and Bob continued to work on the replacement of light bulbs and fixtures, as needed across campus. We think Lee said he replaced 36 bulbs in one building. That’s a lot of trips up and down a ladder. Terry and Mark tore down and disposed of the old wooden fence now that the chain link fence is finished. Laura, Ruth and Carol went back to the duplex we were painting on Thursday. Not positive but we think they finished there and went back to the cottage we worked on last week, painting the porch. We only have three days left, actually 2 ½ because there are throwing us a cookout at lunch Thursday and we will spend the afternoon sorting and packing up all the tools. Anyway, we are trying to finish up everything we have started. We made really good progress on that today. We may get some rain tomorrow, so that may slow us down a little but it looks like we will complete all the high priority jobs they had for us.
After work Max enjoyed watching Terry fly his drone. Max is still interested and we may have a drone in our future. We shall see. We also walked down to the Publix and picked up a few items. It is such a treat to just be able to walk to the grocery store on a beautiful afternoon. After that we just sat outside and read. Another wonderful day. Thank you God for the blessings.
Wonderful, beautiful winter day. Even better it didn’t feel like winter. The low last night was in the upper 50’s. It was 58 when we got up this morning and the high was in the upper 60’s. It may have hit 70, but we were out eagle watching and don’t really know.
Today the team decided to go to worship at the chapel here at FUMCH. Rev. Madeline Luzinski is the Director of Pastoral Care here at FUMCH. She is pastor to the residents as well as the staff. It was a joy this morning to watch her interactions with the kids and the wonderful way she relates to them. The kids seem to really have a connection with her. Last weekend she and other counselors took some of the older girls to Tampa to tour the city, attend a black heritage music festival and do mission work at the Metropolitan Ministries. There the girls worked three, three hour shifts in the thrift store and the kitchen preparing meals for the homeless. Today’s service began with good music from the praise band and then pastor Madeline began a new sermon series on the Lord’s Prayer – delving deeper into the meaning of the prayer they recite most Sundays. Wonderful worship experience today. Pastor also announced that tomorrow evening they will be having a baptism service and celebration for one of the young men who is turning 18 and entering the independent living program. They are doing a good work here at the FUMCH. It is a joy and honor to be able to contribute to their mission with the kids by helping with items around campus.
After worship some of us went to IHOP for lunch. Good food and good companions. Nice. Then, after a nice nap we road the bikes back out to the eagle nest. We saw both adult eagles and still no signs of hatchlings. We were hoping we might have some babies before we leave, but today we didn’t see the parents bringing any food to the nest so we guess we will have to wait a while longer. Maybe by the end of the week if we are lucky. It takes 35 days for eagles to hatch so based on when people have told us the eagles returned we are getting close to time but could be another week or two. We will keep checking. That was our day. Tomorrow the team will start our last four days of work. We have lots to finish before we leave so it will be a busy week.
It was not nearly as cold last night with the temperature 41 when we got up this morning. We had morning sun, but it was cloudy this afternoon. With the temperatures in the high sixties we sat outside and read and relaxed for a while. Nice.
After a tiring day yesterday, we slept in this morning. Then we headed to the local doughnut shop for breakfast. Hard to believe we have been in Enterprise for two full weeks and this is our first time to check out a local shop. We actually only found one local shop in the area, Donuts To Go. They open at 6:00 but still had a good selection when we arrived about 8:30. We got a wide selection, blueberry cake, Boston cream filled, Bavarian cream eclairs, cinnamon rolls and an apple fritter. Those of you that have been reading since the Alaska days know we love to compare cinnamon rolls and doughnuts. We tried all the cinnamon rolls we could find between Alabama and Alaska. We first tried the old fashion blueberry cake doughnuts, while driving back home. There were very good. Actually one of the best we have had. We might put it ahead of Sunny’s Donuts in Gaffney, SC. Next we tried the apple fritter. Again it was a close call but still think Sunny’s wins the fritter contest. Tonight we tried the Boston cream doughnuts. While it was a good doughnut, Sunny’s and Duchess Bakery in Cullman, AL definitely win on that one.
Other than taste testing doughnuts, (a hard job but someone has to do it) we did laundry, cleaned house and rested. All those mundane things you have to do when you travel in a motor home. Max also did a 10 mile bike ride with some geocaching late this afternoon where he saw a bald eagle, several buzzards and some fast-on-their-feet deer.
Anne has been having allergy problems, and after taking some additional medications, decided a nap was in order. That was our day today. Remember tomorrow is Sunday so we need to all be in prayer for all the pastors who will be bringing the message tomorrow. Hope you are having a great weekend and the weather has improved wherever you are this weekend.
We had another cold start to the day with the low of 34. As we were leaving town we noticed frost everywhere. It would have been considered a light or scattered frost at home, but here in central Florida it was FROST and they don’t have FROST. Anyway, it didn’t stay around for long because the sun was again glorious and by shortly after lunch everyone at the RV show was talking about how many layers they had shed. The highest number we heard was 6.
We left Enterprise heading to Tampa to the RV Super show, one of, if not the largest RV show in the US about 7:15. We made a quick stop at McDonald’s for a biscuit before jumping in I-4 west. There was a high power line almost in the parking lot and it was covered with buzzards. We decided they were waiting for customers to have heart attacks from all the high cholesterol foods. Two hours later we were exploring the RV show. There were hundreds and hundreds of beautiful RVs to enjoy and two large buildings of must have stuff to peruse. Of course we weren’t really shopping for a new RV, but we always like to look to see what new RV’s are coming out and what has changed in our favorites. We did pick up a few ideas we might like to use in FRED and did make a purchase of some storage containers. Otherwise, we looked and enjoyed it all, were able to talk to a couple of people about NOMADS and our mission work, and then left to return home just in time to be in the middle of Friday afternoon traffic in Tampa. It actually wasn’t too bad and we had an uneventful ride back to Enterprise.
When you purchase your tickets for the show you get a second ticket to return another day, because there is really too much to see in one day, but we saw a lot of it. Jo and Mark are planning to go to the show tomorrow so we gave them our second day tickets because we don’t plan to play tomorrow. There is rig cleaning and laundry and resting to be done.