From Laura, 11 … Every year we do a celebration of a different country of the world. This year we are doing Morocco. We are studying about it right now. I am doing a report about food and clothing. In mid-October we will eat a meal with food from Morocco and maybe read our reports.
This month we flew to California to visit our grandpa. It was the first time I had flown since 1999. Going through security was fun, but the most exciting parts of the whole thing were takeoff and landing. We cruised slowly to the runway, and, when it was our turn, suddenly we were thundering away! When we got going really fast, the front wheels lifted, then the back wheels, and we were in the air! It took just a few minutes it seemed, to be way, way above everything.
From Becca, 14 …We went flying! It was a fantastic experience. First it was like a field trip, because I saw and learned how the airport system works. But the most exciting part was taking off. We waited and waited while the airplane drove around slowly. Then we started going faster and faster and suddenly we could feel the nose lift off the ground. Then the whole airplane flew way up in the air! We could see the city far below and getting farther away. We saw many pretty puffy clouds around us and below us. I’ve always wanted to be up in the clouds! We saw lots of fields of different colors. Some were all straight boxes in an orderly arrangement, while others were different shapes all squished together randomly, and there were some perfectly round ones. I liked looking at the cities when we were landing in them. All the cars and houses looked like toys.
From Seth, 17 … Over the past few weeks, we have been preparing some music for Mama’s birthday. My favorite two pieces are probably “Swallowtail Jig,” an Irish tune which I enjoy much more now that John has shown me a good guitar strum for it, and “Since by Man Came Death,” a selection from Messiah with excellent words (straight from the Bible), and a tune that fits the words beautifully. I’ve enjoyed our time playing together.
From Anna, 20 … A few weeks ago we went to see a show done by a group of Chinese acrobats. The various acts included feats of agility, flexibility, strength, and coordination. Each act was structured in such a way that it continued building on what they had already done. For example, one act featured performers juggling large balls with their feet in perfect unison. That would have been amazing all by itself, but then they started passing them to each other as they went! There were several times when they were setting up for something, and I thought that surely they weren’t really going to do that, but then they did! It is amazing what God made the human body capable of doing.
From John, 26... I heard someone comment recently that history is linear, not circular, meaning that although we see repeated patterns due to the nature of man which hasn't changed since the fall, history had a distinct beginning and will have a distinct end. God has placed each of us in a particular place on this continuum of time; we stand on the shoulders on those who came before us, and what we do will define the world in which our descendants live. So don't waste your life.
About Ray, Katie, and Peter … The Wades recently and unexpectedly dropped in one evening while they were out walking and gave us the sweet and wonderful news that another little Wade is on the way! We couldn’t be more thrilled! There just isn’t enough of Peter to go around!
From Judith … Ever since Katie became an adult, it has seemed like the others have been racing up behind her! Besides having Katie married, we currently have John and Anna marriageable. Then there’s Seth. He’s getting a fair bit of our parental attention right now as he is finishing high school, learning to drive, working through a career assessment, and taking steps in consideration of possibly needing a college education. Whew! Also, in five and seven years, respectively, Becca and Laura will be finished with home education. That seems like such a brief time considering that we have been home-educating for 23 years! I have a strong sense that I must be careful to relish these years with my children before they have all left their childhood.
My dad hasn’t been able to travel in recent years, which is why we went to San Diego. It’s important to Gerald and me that our children know our parents. The visit wonderfully reconnected them with my dad and his wife. Also, this was the first time for Ray and Peter to meet them. Yes, all ten of us flew out there. All things considered it really wasn’t that much more to fly than to drive. Also, by flying we saved work and vacation time. Besides that, it was worth every penny to see how much delight the flight produced! Our fellow passengers were quite amused!
From Gerald … We had a good time on our trip to San Diego. It was really fun for me to see the excitement of Becca and Laura on the airplane. The last time they flew, they were both too young to remember it. We were able to get a good mix of time with the grandparents and various sightseeing activities. It was also a really refreshing break from the Houston heat. Seventy degrees felt so much nicer than ninety.
Our Love, Gerald, Judith, John, Anna, Seth, Becca, and Laura