Sunday, June 27, 2010

PowWow Weekend 2010

Sunday Afternoon

This has been an eventful weekend! Friday evening, there were 15 of us who went to Gliori's Italian Restaurant for dinner in Tecumseh. Ian and Phyllis loved hosting us! Those who went were Gramma, Galen and Sondra, Jason and wife, Shelly with 3 kids Jace, Kylee and baby Macyn. Noel and Janice were there with Mark. Cousin, George Godfry with wife, Pat, joined Bill and myself. (For a picture, see Galen's blog because I forgot my camera.) I had been preparing a birthday celebration for Mark at our house which followed the dinner. Mark loved the red,white and blue cake and the cards he got filled with money!

Saturday, Noel came over to our house in the afternoon by himself to just chat and relax. He wasn't feeling well. About 5:00 p.m. we followed him to Gramma's apartment to visit with George and Pat who had come from Springfield, Illinois to compete in the PoW Wow dance. (He won first place and $500.) George followed The Trail of Tears a few years ago and has done extensive background search on my Grandfather Bergeron's family. His book will be printed soon. Dr. George Godfry is also a retired entomology professor. He taught at University of Illinois. The picture I posted below this blog does not portray him well. He's a vivacious guy who is full of life and wit!! While visiting with George, my cousin, Susan Bergeron came with 3 of her children - Jennifer, Tricia, and Scotland. (Picture below) As I listened to the opening prayer in Potawatomi and English at the Pow Wow, I realized again that man has been searching for God and finding Him for thousands of years. Our American Indian forefathers have always worshipped the Creator and have many traditions connected with that worship. Spreading the incense with an Eagle feather is just one. Wanting to know God is in the heart of everyone!

This morning (Sunday) there were 13 in Bible Study. The theme was, "The Consequences of Poor Choices". Mom, George and Pat slipped in for the worship service. Bill and I played, "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" for the special music. Pastor Larry was out of the hospital and brought the morning message. (Today is his 62nd birthday.) That is a miracle! One would never know that he has suffered a stroke. His theme was, "A genuine Christian is one who has had a life change". As Larry often says, "I am just one begger telling another begger where to find bread!" It's impossible to go to New Beginnings church and not feel the presence of God!!! Several adult men and women came back to God today and tears of joy were flowing all over the auditorium. It brought tears to my own eyes as I thought of people in my life who I'm praying for daily. I've learned that our struggle is not with Satan, but with God. Satan leaves us alone when we are not in relationship with God. However, when we are out of fellowship with God, He continues to love us and struggles with our hearts to bring us back to Him. Recently, I heard a lady on TV say that it was "anti-intellectual" for Obama to say that we should pray. I know many really smart, smart people who believe in God and rely on Him for wisdom and strength. That's an important factor in why they are so intelligent! (Pics of the Pow Wow are below.)

Friday, June 25, 2010

Friday Morning

I taught Bill's classes yesterday afternoon. It was a jump for me because he teaches APL to students who have graduated and want to pass the TOEFL. I enjoyed teaching advanced vocabulary and reading. When classes were finished, Sondra brought Galen over to the college to drive Bill's car home for me. He was still sleeping when we arrived, but was feeling much better after taking some steroids and sudafed. He would rather have his blood pressure go up than be dizzy.

Noel called about 4:45 p.m. and said Janice was driving through Tulsa. Galen, Sondra, Noel, Janice, Mark, Bill and I all met for dinner at the Cracker Barrel on I-40. We chose that place because Noel's family was staying at La Quinta just across the road. They always stay there when they come because Mark loves the pool and the buffet breakfast. My cousin, George and his wife, Pat were to come in last night and stay with Gramma. She's hosting lunch today and I'm not sure what we will do tonight. I know that Mark wants me to celebrate his birthday while they are here.

I have been practicing an arrangement of, "Come Thou Fount" for next Sunday. Bill chose it. It's quite challenging because it changes time signatures 4 times and changes keys 3 times. It has 9th chords and lots of 16th notes. When I was younger, I didn't pay a lot of attention to the words of the hymns. Now, I actually understand them!! As I was driving to school yesterday, I heard these words, "If you put your faith in people, things, or money, you will lose your faith. If you put your faith in God, you will never lose it!" My brother, David, has seen the difference in families who are true Christians, and families who are not. He asked Galen if he could share at his church this coming Sunday. Everything has fallen into place for David since he was released from prison. Within 4 weeks he received his social security with back pay. He passed his drivers test and got his California license, he had enough money to buy a VW Passat, he has learned to use a cell phone, and he has job opportunities to choose from! I could hear the tears in his voice when he was telling me about how God has forgiven him and is heaping His mercy on him. David is 66 years old and growing younger everyday. It's never too late!!

Thursday, June 24, 2010


Sometimes I get so busy that I actually forget to put some happenings in my blog! Chinami wrote and asked for our mailing address - it's different from our street address. For those of you who want to use snail mail --P.O. Box 211. For those who want to send flowers - 508 Mark St. Ha! Ha! Chinami has her airline ticket for America, and she is sooo excited!

Bill was given some movie certificates, so we saw Karate Kid last weekend. It was fantastic! Bill and I spent 5 days in Beijing in 2005, so we had a lot of flashbacks. I can still remember how hot it was the days we went sightseeing. I only climbed about 20 steps on the Great Wall and then I sat down with some other people. They are very steep, and I'm short!

Bill and I also spent a few hours updating our wills. The kids better be nice to us. Smile! As far as I know, I could die tomorrow and everything is in order and completely paid for. We even have our stone which Bill designed with musical scripture and music. It just needs the final dates on them.

Bill just called from school. He's having a vertigo problem, so I'll get him home and take his classes this afternoon.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Wednesday, June 23rd

I took Gramma to the hospital on Monday to see her newest great granddaughter. While we were visiting, the nurse kept calling the baby a different name. Shelly explained that they had changed their minds and her name is now MACYN DAWN. They will call her Macy.

Galen and Sondra brought Jace 10, and Kylee 7 to dinner last night. I served spaghetti, green beans, salad and garlic bread. The kids loved the ice cream drumsticks! After dinner we played with Jace's new toy. It's a colorful parrott that repeats what anyone says. Pure fun!

Yesterday was my first day of the new session. I am teaching a young Muslim wife who is soooo intelligent! She proved to me that she can diagram a sentence very quickly. I realized that she is going to be finished with the textbook in half the usual time, so I'm going to start her writing paragraphs and see if she can use her grammar. Her goal is to get a Masters in marketing at a n American university. Speaking of school, I've got to go!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Watermelon by Marti Roberts - June 21, 2010

From a small black seed God grows the watermelon fruit;
It baffles my mind, to tell you the truth.

The rind is green, and sometimes it's striped;
I thump it and listen to see if it's ripe.

The melon drips with sweet red juice;
It's shape can be round, long or obtuse.

Eat it plain, or add a little salt;
On a hot summer day, you need no excuse. Yum!
Father's Day/Happy Birthday

Galen just sent us a text that his granddaughter, Haydn Dawn, was delivered at Unity Hospital in Shawnee at 10:30 am. Shelly had all of her kids by C-section. No wonder! Haydn was 9 lbs. 8 oz. Shelly is very petite!

Today is also my daughter-in-law, Tamra's, birthday! She's celebrating in the Philippines. Kirk said he was sending her to a hotel spa.

Yesterday, was Noel's birthday. He said he douple-dipped since it was Father's Day. Janice is planning to drive him to Shawnee this weekend to see Galen and Sondra before they go back to California. Noel is still recovering from a recent light stroke.

Bible Study took me by complete surprise on Sunday! Two of our new Muslim students came, and a third young man showed up for worship service. I reached out my hand, but instead he kissed me on both cheeks! A Cowboy Church pastor from Muleshoe, Texas was our guest. It worked out because Pastor Larry was in the hospital. (He had a mild stroke!) Steve Frisco was in Shawnee at the Expo Center to auction horses for the weekend, and brought the message to us. I guess he's famous because we had about 30 guests come who knew that he would be there. Steve became a Christian when he was 35 years old. He shared that he was so depressed that he pulled his pick-up truck over to the side of the highway and had a long talk with God. He began to search the scriptures and got so excited that he had to start sharing what he knew.

I'll write more later. I have so much more to share.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Great picture of David and Roger

My nephew, Steve (Noel's son), posted a great picture of my brothers, David and Roger on his blog. Steve happened to be taking a load through California last week. David is sitting in Steve's semi cab with Roger looking in. Roger is my baby brother.
New Schedule/SBC Pics/Mom/ Galen/Kirk

We finished Session #6 at school and I am excited about my new schedule. Since we have a lot of OBU graduates who majored in ESL and who want to teach until they go abroad, I can have my afternoons free. I love that! One of my pet peeves is clutter, so I can keep my home organized for a little while. I noticed that I have passed on my need for organization to Keri. She had everything ready for the baby when I arrived in Chicago. I shared the baby's walk-in-closet which had 32 new outfits hanging in order from 3 months to 1 year old. They were all gifts from her church shower!

Kelli wrote that she is back home in Michigan and sent the following website to view the pics that she has worked on. It looks like she had to write carefully and be sure she had all of her facts. Kelli said that the convention was very positive and had a spirit of unity.

Galen, Sondra and Mom are on their way to Oklahoma this afternoon. Galen and Sondra will be here for the birth of another grandchild. The gender is a secret! Next weekend is the PowWow. I've been watching the tribe cover the mini-golf course and build a new RV park next to the river.

Kirk and Tamra are having a great time in Manila, Philippines. They have been working with college students and have found most of them to be disenchanted with the Catholic Church. They don't want religion, and rules. They want to know who God is, and have a spirit of peace. The good news is that we can know God if we WANT to.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Surviving the Storms of Life

I called Noel this morning to ask his advice on my tomato plants. I have an excellent problem! There are 24 green tomatoes on one plant. Since they are cherry tomatoes, he told me not to thin them, just let them grow. We've already picked about 8 and used them for salad. I have learned that location is everything! I moved my topsy turvy plant to the north side of the house. It gets a lot of morning sun. I'm really a novice at gardening, but find it to be rewarding if I don't have to work too hard at it. My rose bushes are wonderful! Both my yellow and red bushes are producing gorgeous flowers! They have not only survived the storms, but seem to be thriving. They are like some people! I'll try to post a picture soon.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

All God's Critters are Safe!

On Monday, OKC set a record and had more rain in one day than in the past 500 years. Tecumseh got 6 inches and our lawn looks super green. My plants look happy as well. Tuesday morning, as Bill was getting ready to leave for school, he noticed that the pan that protects the engine was hanging a bit from the heavy rain. He opened the hood of the Corolla to see how to re-attach it. When he did so, a mother cat and two baby kittens tried to jump out. One kitten was caught and he had to pull it free. We don't even want to think what would have happened if he had turned on the engine! God takes care of all His creatures!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Weekend Events

We are currently experiencing a thunder storm as I write this blog. I opened the French doors while Bill and I ate breakfast this morning so that we could watch the rain. My plants are doing extremely well this year. I hope they survive the storm.

Kelli called from Orlando on Saturday. She was relaxing by the hotel pool for a few minutes. While talking, she could see on her call waiting that her editor was trying to reach her, so I let her go. She told me earlier that she enjoys seeing her journalist friends at the SBC Convention every year. I may have mentioned that Kelli's job is to write by-lines for the photos.

Mom called and was having a great time in California. Highlights for her were seeing her twin great grandsons, and seeing the play, "Pygmalian" .

I missed some of my calls, but hope those people will call back.

Bible Study was great on Sunday. We had a new couple join us ---Bear and Sarah Ruth. Bear lost his job at the Post Office, but decided to go with our church team to Malawi to help feed orphans for a week. He said it changed his life! What Christians believe and do seems like complete foolishness to the world. However, we have had an experience with God that no one can ever take away. I may be crazy, but I'm happy and know where I'm headed when this life is over. After worship service on Sunday, we had our second choir practice for July 4th Sunday. We have a small group ---only 12 of us, but we are working hard. The number we are learning has a lot of syncopation and is quite bouncy!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Reflections on the Past

Yesterday afternoon was very hot and humid. Bill and I decided to go to the mall and watch a movie. We saw "Letters to Juliet". Bill said it was a chic flick to beat all chic flicks, but he enjoyed it! Vanessa Redgrave spends several weeks trying to find her first love in Italy. Of course, it's funny as well as very romantic. The overall theme was, "What if.....?" That really makes one think deeply. I was reminded that who you spend your life with can determine whether or not you reach your potential and your ultimate dreams. There is often a lot of sacrifice on the part of one spouse. Bill and I have been invited to Ben Walters wedding at the end of this month. Ben is going to OU in Norman to pursue his dream of being a lawyer. His wife is planning to teach English for several years to make this possible financially. I was reminded that Kevin is finishing up his last year at Trinity Seminary. Keri is a stay at home Mom -- which means they don't go out to eat much, and they don't go to movies. However, they both know what their dreams are, and what it takes to reach them. Money is wonderful, but loving what you do everyday is more important. In the movie, the young girl who helps the elderly woman find her "dream man" (after 50 years of being apart) is encouraged to follow her dream as a writer by the grandson. Yep! There are two love stories! Love is encouraging your soul-mate to reach his/her potential and to find purpose in life.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Friday Funnies

I just finished hosing down both patios so that we can eat breakfast outside this weekend. Bill is busy mowing front and back lawns. (I think he likes the physical activity after being in a classroom all day.) While working outside, I was reflecting on my classes and it brought a smile to my face. One of my students asked me where he could buy gloves. He couldn't find any at Wal-Mart. When I asked him why he needed gloves, he told me that he was going to visit his cousin in Viriginia and it's cold there. I tried to teach him that America has seasons and it is no longer cold in Virginia. Another student had been taught by an American that girls are "cheesecake", so when I was teaching the contraction "she's" my student kept saying "cheese". Of course, I gave him an instant spelling and pronounciation lesson. There is never a dull moment in my classes! I learned that one of my new students has a university degree from his country in physics. His fiance is studying to be a medical doctor. He showed me an email from her on his cell phone, and the English was perfect! It was also very, very sweet!

On the not so funny side, Noel's doctor has released him from his job at American Insurance Co. for a month. Then, he will be re-evaluated. I'm so glad his doctor did that! Otherwise, Noel would just keep on trying to do his job in the legal department. It's a very stressful job which requires long hours. When Noel called this afternoon, he knew that I would be happy because I have been trying to convince him that the world will go on while he takes the time to recover!! There are so many people today who try to get away with doing as little as possible, and Noel doesn't want to be perceived as one of those people! (Noel, I know you are reading this.)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Pictures of Grayslake, Illinois (in blog below)

I will post just a few pictures each day. Grayslake is a northern suburb of Chicago. It is next to Gurnee which is home to Six Flags. One of my joys while visiting Keri and Kevin is sleeping in the guestroom on the second floor which overlooks the lake. Every morning, I could look out my windows and watch the activity on the lake. Fishermen were preparing for relaxation and geese were flying in formation. Most afternoons, I would walk the girls on the beach and meet neighbors from the other condos. I enjoyed talking to Lori, a retired lady my age, and two East Indian ladies with children whose husbands work for Abbott's Laboratories. Grayslake is a forested area with many more lakes nearby.

Mom called last night. In spite of turbulent weather near Denver, she made it to the Ontario Airport in California. Roger told her to call him on her cell phone when she landed, so he met her right away. Roger is in charge of the senior group in his church, and had taken Mom out to breakfast with them, and to sing for a nursing home. She had also spent the afternoon with David and Meche. She was a "happy camper".

Kirk and Tamra left for the Philippines on Tuesday, so they will miss seeing Gramma. Kirk was bummed about that! However, he planned to join the family lunch at Cal Baptist University on Sunday so that he could spend time with his Uncle David. I think Kelli leaves next week for Orland to cover the SBC Convention. She was excited about it when I saw her in Chicago. Hannah and Caleb will go to tennis camp. In spite of being in the 9th grade, Caleb has been asked to try out for the varsity team. His goal is to beat his Papa Bill in tennis. (He has yet to do that! )

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Cloudy Wednesday

Our area is suppose to have thunderstorms for the next few days. That's God's mercy because Mom asked me to water her plants while she is in California for the next two weeks! Bill and I had dinner with her last evening at Abuelita's before taking her to the airport. She had to change planes in Denver, but United's staff seemed to be taking very good care of her.

I started teaching again on Monday. It has been a very busy week because we had new students coming in early. The agents were confused and we have had to assimilate students into existing classes very quickly. Four young men from Saudi Arabia have come into my classes. I was scrambling to get them new textbooks and give them orientations. It really is easy when the students are so charming and eager to learn.

I will be putting more pictures on my blog after school today.

Please pray for Noel. He called me Monday evening after being in ER again. It is apparent that he went back to work too early after a light stroke recently. The doctor has to be firm with a Greenwalt!! We are known for working and playing too hard. Ha!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Christmas in June!!

On Friday, Kevin drove Sofia and Selah to Michigan to celebrate his father's 80th birthday with the rest of his family. Keri, Isaiah and I had a very relaxing evening together. However, Isaiah realized that gramma was leaving soon and became very unsettled during the night. I took care of him from 1:30 am until 3:00 am. When he finally fell asleep, I went back to bed until 6:30 am. Keri drove me to the Milwaukee airport which is about 30 minutes north of Grayslake, and I flew to Detroit. I always feel like I'm back in Japan once I arrive there because everything is in English and Japanese. I heard a final call for Narita Airport in Tokyo and it felt strange not to be boarding. At the same time I was glad to be going home to Oklahoma. Also, while waiting to board my plane, my cell phone rang. It was my brother, David and his wife, Meche. David will be coming to the Pow Wow at this end of this month. (We all complained about David's beard, and he shaved it. Now he looks 20 pounds lighter and 20 years younger! Look at Galen's pics.) God has answered so many prayers! Keri and Isaiah are healthy, and David has been released. Roger sent Mom an airline ticket to California, so Bill and I will drive her to the airport on Tuesday. It feels like Christmas!

I arrived home Saturday evening completely exhausted. Bless Bill's heart, he had cleaned the house from top to bottom. He had also mowed and trimmed the back and front yards. He had watered all of the plants for two weeks and picked our first tomatoes. He did all of this while working full-time at the school and teaching on-line in the evening. In addition, he has begun mentoring other on-line teachers at the request of GCU. He seemed very glad to have me home to take over some of the duties!

Sunday, there were 15 in my Bible Study Class, including a new student from China who had never been to church. He told me that he didn't understand all of the English, but felt something in his heart. Of course, I know that it is the Spirit. The lesson focused on how the world views the things of God. They think it is foolishness, and depend on their own intellect to have all of the answers. Paul has a lot to say about that in I Corinthians. It is very sad to see people harden their hearts towards spiritual things. They miss out on so much because they ignore a complete dimension of their lives. I listened to Laura Bush again last night on the Huckabee Show. She again talked about how she had wandered away from God when she killed her friend in a traffic accident at age 17. When asked how she found her way back to God, she said that over the years she had other prayers answered that were important to her. She said it didn't happen in a flash, it was journey of faith. She also said that she had learned to view that event through mature eyes. There are things far worse than death for the believer.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Gramma and the Grandkids

The last week has been a whirl of activity! Kelli brought Hannah and Caleb to visit their new cousin, Isaiah on Memorial Day weekend. Gramma took Sofia and Selah to the playpark for a few hours of fun and to church on Sunday. Keri is getting skinny again and gaining more energy everyday. I have to remind her to pace herself. I'll be going back to Oklahoma on Saturday, and will want to take all of my babies with me!