(in case you have been wondering)
[OLIVIA GRACE THE MORNING OF THE BAPTISM]
The second half of the trip was quite busy with the highlight being the baptism of my niece, Olivia Grace seen with her proud parents, cousin Thomas, aunt Piper, and Uncle Keith (above).
By the time our car pulled back into Pembroke Pines we had logged over 3,600 miles, taken the subways in both New York and Boston (the friendlier of the two by far), ridden in a DUWK boat and on a ferry, "trolly-ed" along the streets of Savannah, passed by two Chinatowns, toured two colleges and and equal number of candy factories (gotta get one of those salt water taffy machines!), tubed on one creek, saw beautiful mountains not made of trash, passed through Georgia, North and South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey (once by accident, once on purpose), Connecticut, Road Island, Massachusetts, and Delaware. We visited two sets of parents Piper's in Georgia and mine in Florida (and at the Baptism in New York) and both of my sisters (in New York and Boston, respectively).
[BELOW RIGHT - LUKE CAPTAINS THE DUWK BOAT IN BOSTON HARBOR]
After all of those miles and so many states (and interstates), it is a toss up on which state can claim the title of the "worst drivers," but how's this for an incentive to be a little more gentle with the horn: sign in Manhattan - "$350 fine for improper use of horn." Florida's budget would be balanced with money left over. (Note to self: give suggestion to Governor Crist as a wedding present.)
[The Great Baptismal Afternoon Whiffle Ball Game]
We are staying with gracious friends until the work on the parsonage is completed.
Now that the "rip out" is finished, once-hidden issues have surfaced, especially with the plumbing which are being remedied so that the rest of the work can continue. These things should be expected in a nearly 50 year old house. Keep Janean (our much beloved project coordinator) and the rest of the leadership in your prayers as they continue to deal with the issues that arise in such a project. We are ever-grateful for all in this much needed and thoughtful project.
I will soon begin blogging on "Becoming a Blessing Church," the book that council and I are reading this summer and on "Natural Church Development" a process that Trinity will be entering into later on this year. Both are quite exciting! This year's Christmas Eve production "The Song of the Night Wind" is in early development.
No running yet, but I am now walking up to four miles a day and keeping up with the medication that the emergency room doc put me on for the hiatal hernia. No more attacks - so thanks for the prayers!
For now - the Blessings of Christ be upon you, the wind of the Spirit blow through you, the grace of God bring you the hope that sustains and keeps us!