People of God, Don't Lose Hope – "This Is Your Finest Hour!"
June 27, 2015
My apologies for not having time now to post much these days, but writing this new book demands more hours than are available. News now comes like non-stop hurricanes in wads of blinding fury. Most of it not good. In light of that, this piece of prophetic encouragement had to be posted.
Americans and other folks around the world are discouraged on so many fronts. This is a time of great sadness as we see life as we knew shaken to its core and morphed into something unrecognizable. Somebody has unscrewed the bolts that held this Nation secure, steady and true. Now it rocks on shaky foundations. To know that we are in End Times doesn't ease the sorrow even though we know bright days are ahead. People look at news and current events in astonishment as one blow after another pummels even the strongest heart, yet we pick ourselves up and remember that this time on earth is just a fleeting speck.
Stan and I've talked with many Christians over the past few weeks and they all feel a closing darkness and a spirit of oppression. Many see the prophesied persecution – that which others are experiencing around the globe – coming to their own towns and cities. Certainly scary Times are lining up, laws are slipping into place that have redefined and upended American values and beliefs. Other things that we couldn't envision occurring 15 years ago – not in America – are out there hovering, waiting.
Two extraordinary blows in one week – ObamaCare and mandatory recognition of gay marriage – delivered from the one branch of government that was supposed to be the most impartial has left people reeling. To say that events during the Obama Administration are shocking would be like saying a nuclear bomb is an annoyance.
A Net friend with whom we've corresponded since our days living in Australia sent this. H/T to Nansings. As days grow darker and stranger, the following will lift your spirit, refuel your heart and give you comfort. Read Lana Vawser's message below and be encouraged.
Maranatha! Time must be very short.
Screen Snap of USA Todayvideo: After Friday’s landmark Supreme Court ruling that allows same-sex couples
nationwide to marry, the White House was lit in rainbow colors of red, orange,
yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet on Friday evening.
Church of the United States of America!
Don’t Lose Hope… This Is Your Finest Hour Says The Lord…
June 27, 2015
As someone who has a great love and heart for the United States of America, I was grieved along with fellow believers at the decision from the Supreme Court today “redefining” marriage.
I felt the discouragement and sadness of many in the USA, the questions, the feeling of “not understanding”, the confusion and the feeling of not having their “voices” heard. Many disheartened that they are now faced with an outcome they either did not agree with or believed for.
As I pondered this before the Lord suddenly the words flooded my heart.
“It is always darkest before the dawn. Darkest before the moment of greater victory.”
I was left with the sense that for many that are feeling this ‘outcome’ as great darkness that there is still hope for the USA and to encourage the people of God in the United States, that even though for them it may seem like ‘defeat’ in many ways, God is not finished with the USA. The words flooded my heart again that the Lord gave me months ago “There is still gold in the USA.”
Even in the midst of a nation that has taken a stand against biblical principles and away from the God-ordained and created definition of marriage, He is the one who defines marriage, not a court system. Certainly there are spiritual laws, we reap what we sow, but I felt the heart of God for this people to NOT GIVE UP HOPE. Do NOT give up hope, even when you feel like you are at the end of your rope. Even when you are faced with a situation such as this that is disheartening and discouraging, can I encourage you to continue to contend for the USA. Continue to call her forth into her destiny. Despite the “mess” that is before your eyes, continue to call out the GOLD in the USA. There is still GOLD in the USA and the Lord has a great destiny for the USA.
I felt the Lord saying: “Many have perceived this as the enemy having victory, but I have GREATER victory planned!!!!!”
I then saw myself standing above what looked like a HUGE map of the United States of America and there was mess everywhere. It looked like things were being turned upside down, it seemed like there was CHAOS everywhere. The people of God were looking on at the chaos going on around them, and were giving up hope. Committing the USA to doom. Do not align yourself with the darkness. Do not align your words with darkness. Suddenly, I saw the fire of God begin to burn pathways through the nation for His people to walk through. As they began to walk upon these paths, angelic hosts on either side of these paths began to sing LOUDLY. “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, HEAR THE VICTORY! HERE IS THE VICTORY. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, HEAR THE VICTORY! HERE IS THE VICTORY.
"Suddenly words BOOMED through every part of my being:
"I am raising up an army in the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, that will not be swayed by what they see and will not give up. In the midst of areas of darkness in the nation, I am raising up My Church. This is THE GREATEST HOUR for My people in the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. IN AMONGST the darkness, I am positioning My people as they stay close to Me, to SHINE like never before. As more darkness has seemingly begun to fall upon the nation, My Church is about to rise and shine (Isaiah 60) like NEVER BEFORE and SHOW the nation of the United States what VICTORY LOOKS LIKE. An army not moved by victory in the “NATURAL” but moving from a place of ASSURED CONTINUAL VICTORY by standing STRONG in Me. Church of America, this is your FINEST HOUR!!!! It’s time to ARISE. Some of the greatest demonstrations of My power, and My love are going to be seen in this day. DO NOT give up hope. For in the darkness, you will find your FINEST HOUR. It is always darkest before the dawn. The dawn of the sons and daughters of Glory arising to show the nation what TRUE VICTORY looks like.”
People of the United States, I call you friends, and I love your nation. I stand with you. I contend with you. I believe with you. Despite what your eyes see, do NOT give up hope. For this is the finest hour for the Church of the United States of America. You are going to shine brighter than you have ever shone as you stay close to Him.
Call out the gold in the United States. She STILL has a destiny. There is still gold WITHIN HER. Show the nation what TRUE VICTORY looks like by walking in your God given authority and destiny. The darkness many of you are seeing, is a great opportunity to shine His light and Glory in ways you have never before.
Lana Vawser is married to Kevin, and they are living in Brisbane, Australia with their two sons. Lana and Kevin's heart is to see the Body of Christ develop deep intimacy with Jesus and actively hear His voice each day. They have a heart to see people free and walking in all that Jesus has purchased for them as they carry Christ into their world each day. Lana is an active member of the Australian Prophetic Council and releases prophetic words for the Body of Christ and over the nations through both the pulpit and the internet. Lana preaches regularly and ministers prophetically calling people into a constant pursuit of His heart and hearing His voice for themselves and others.
Underwater Volcano May Be Erupting Off Oregon –
Earthquakes Increase from 100's a Day to 1000's a Day
May 1, 2015
An underwater volcano off the coast of Oregon has risen from its slumber and may be spewing out lava about a mile beneath the sea.
Researchers were alerted to the possible submarine eruption of the Axial Seamount, located about 300 miles (480 kilometers) off the West Coast, by large changes in the seafloor elevation and an increase in the number of tiny earthquakes on April 24.
Geologists Bill Chadwick, of the Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory and Oregon State University, and Scott Nooner, of the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, successfully forecast the eruption in a blog post in September 2014, though they had presented their ideas at a meeting before then.
Axial Seamount is an underwater mountain that juts up 3,000 feet (900 meters) from the ocean floor, and is part of a string of volcanoes that straddle the Juan de Fuca Ridge, a tectonic-plate boundary where the seafloor is spreading apart.
Chadwick and Nooner have been monitoring the seamount for the past 15 years by measuring tiny movements in the seafloor as the volcano inflates with magma and then deflates. During that period, the volcano has erupted two other times — once in 1998 and again in 2011.
"It's kind of like a balloon — as magma is going into the balloon, it's inflating, and it pushes the seafloor up," Chadwick told Live Science. "As more and more magma gets in, the pressure builds. Eventually, it reaches some critical pressure where [the seamount] can't hold it in anymore, and then it squirts out."
After the volcano erupts, the seafloor drops very rapidly, "like letting air out of a balloon," he said.
WORLD'S FIRST 'WIRED VOLCANO'
For the first time, Chadwick and his colleagues were able to observe the eruption in real time, thanks to a set of instruments connected to shore by a fiber-optic cable, installed last summer by the University of Washington and paid for by the National Science Foundation.
"This is the first place in the world where we have a wired volcano on the seafloor," Chadwick said.
Last week, the center of the volcanic crater dropped by nearly 8 feet (2.4 m) over a period of 12 hours, and the number of tiny earthquakes increased from hundreds per day to thousands per day, Chadwick said. On April 24, there were 8,000 earthquakes in one day, he said. (The earthquakes are too small to cause any harm to coastal residents or to trigger a tsunami, the researchers noted.)
The measurements came from eight seismometers installed around the edge of the Axial Seamount's large caldera, as well as sensors that measure changes in water pressure as the volcano's surface inflates or deflates.
"If the seafloor is going up, there's less ocean above you, so there's a little less pressure," Chadwick said. "It's not much, but our instruments are so sensitive [that] we can measure to within a millimeter of vertical motion."
The seamount last erupted in April 2011. Scientists discovered the eruption by accident, on a routine expedition to the seamount in late July. They were planning to retrieve some instruments they had left there the year before, when a robotic vehicle sent down to explore the site revealed a fresh lava flow that was more than 12 feet (4 m) thick in places.
Nooner and Chadwick have been monitoring the Axial Seamount since its previous eruption in 1998. At the time, they forecast the seamount was due for another eruption at some point before 2016.In addition to the volcano, the site is home to hydrothermal vents and an entire biological ecosystem, which many different scientists are studying. READ MORE
Tips of the Day
April 10, 2015
CALIFORNIA DROUGHT RAISES FOOD PRICES
For another book to be released later this year, I'd researched the California mega-drought situation. It's Uglyville there and unfortunately, they provide most of the fruits and veggies for our Country. The water situation there is at crisis level. Unlike Texas who has been in the same boat but hit the problem head on, CA is late to the remediation party. As a consequence, it's ramping fresh produce prices in grocery stores and also for the wine and nut industries. Go buy a bottle of CA wine and it's up at least 20% from 12 months ago.
Last year California produce rose as much as 34% specifically as a result of the drought. With no end in sight, prices may go even higher this year. This weekend we'll get our veggie gardens ready using Garden Gold's method of biointensive gardening. Not only are our veggies grown organically, it saves heaps of money, they're always right out our back door AND they taste so much better!
We shop Sam's Club frequently and when there is a product deficit, there's usually a money reason. It's a BIG heads up.
A month ago we shopped there for bulk bags of pecans and sliced almonds. There were none. Zip. Zero. Nada. That entire cooking isle was gone. BUT you can buy them cheapest through Sam's Club online.
Almonds are very important to optimal health. We put them in yogurt, cereal, green bean casseroles, on Stan's homemade ice cream or munch as a snack. They are vital, all heart-healthy.
A week ago Coast To Coast AM called Stan to talk about California's water crisis. It's that bad.
If you have a Sam's Club card, they have the best price for a 2-pound bag of Diamond Almonds at $16.48. This is killer-low compared to other producers. Wait, and prices will go into stratosphere. Stick extra bags in your freezer. They'll keep for a long time.
Canine influenza is at epidemic levels and our 4-leggeds need protection and have preventative measures taken for them – just like people do.
Klein, the supervising veterinarian at the Chicago Veterinary Emergency Center, stated "We have had a few fatalities, so that's why it's exceedingly serious. It causes pneumonia, in some cases, and some of these dogs have to be on oxygen and on ventilation."
Dr. Judith Schwartz, staff veterinarian at New York's Humane Society of New York, called the outbreak "very" concerning. "Especially if it's within a certain period of time. That's very, very... that's frightening."
One vet shared that he'd seen 5% fatalities.
Andy Izquierdo of PetSmart warns. "If they've been in a boarding facility, if they've been at a doggy day camp, or a dog park, that's an area where this virus can be spread. Take a look at your dog, look for symptoms, keep them isolated if at all possible."
Our female Kelpie, Bella, came down with the flu a month ago. We have no idea where or how she caught it. Though she's fine now, her breathing became very labored, her heart seemed like it would pound out of her chest, she refused to eat and lost 9% of her body weight and continually made weird noises in her throat. It took TWO rounds of antibiotics for her to kick it. Now she's back to her ornery self. Jayzbo also caught it from Bella, but wasn't nearly so sick. We had no idea what we were dealing with otherwise we'd have kept them apart. So it was inevitable Jayzbo would catch it from his sister.
Symptoms to look for include a persistent cough, runny nose and fever. Read the rest here and watch the CBS video for tips of how to prevent flu in your 4-legged.
GARDEN FERTILIZER GOOD BUY
After several years, we used the last bit of Miracle-Gro All Purpose Flower and Vegetable Fertilizer. Have used it for 40 years and my mother before me. This was part of her the secret for her fabulously green thumb.
Sam's Club has a 12.5 pound box for $21. At Lowe's a 1.5 pound box is $6. Home Depot's 10 pound box is $19.50. These are the largest size each store sells. Bigger size normally = better price.
Checked Costco online and they don't seem to sell it in any size.
Sam's Club 12.5# box – $1.68/lb
Lowe's – $4/lb (they only sell it in the 1.5 pound size)
Home Depot 10# box – $1.95/lb
DING DING DING – and the winner is: Sam's Club. Bought ours a week ago. Happy Gardening!
Witness the Eruption of Vesuvius Nearly 2100 Years Ago: Pompeii - August 24, 79 BC
A Day in Pompeii animation made for the Melbourne Museum recreates the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius and destruction of Pompeii.
Be alert to EVERYTHING (sights & sounds) that is happening including:
1. Clouds gliding by
2. Birds fleeing
3. Dogs barking
4. First steaming of the volcano
6. Tiles falling from the roofs from earthquake shakes
7. Sky turning dark with volcanic debris
8. Debris accumulating on the roofs
9. Pyroclastic flows pouring down the left side of the mountain
11. Buildings collapsing
12. Pyroclastic flows overcoming the city
13. The end of the Pompeii…
Be sure to Go Full-Screen. It's not to be missed. View images of Pompeii today. H/T: Henry Hess
HOLLY NOTE: Yellowstone made the news twice in 24 hours and neither is an April Fool's joke. They're something interesting to contemplate. The article follows and the images are a screen snap of "busy" Old Faithful courtesy of Dutchsince's video. You can view Yellowstone's live cam here.
Retired Kremlin Military Analyst: Russia Could Detonate Nukes Over Yellowstone Supervolcano and San Andreas Fault to Completely Annihilate America
Konstantin Sivkov wrote that Russia needs a new 'asymmetric' weapon
He says detonating nuclear weapons on seafloor would unleash tsunamis
Seismic activity would trigger volcano, pour feet of ash over the US
He says tsunamis could affect 240 million Americans and hit Europe too
Analyst says new weapons could be ready within 10 years
TV presenter previously said Russia could turn US to 'radioactive dust'
April 1, 2015
UK Daily Mail
He said that the main objective of the new system would serve as an asymmetric threat against the US, which is 'moving to the borders or Russia'.
Sivkov headlines sections of his article with headers such as 'Specifications for Megaweapons', 'One Day Without America,' 'The Day After Tomorrow' and 'The Apocalypse- Simply and Cheaply'.
The Russian analyst reasoned that because 80 per cent US population (HOLLY NOTE: The actual number is 51%) lives near the coast, generating tsunamis on the San Andreas fault and in the Atlantic would be an effective way of causing massive damage to 240 million people.
He references Hurricane Katrina's impact on New Orleans and says that detonating nuclear bombs near the bottom of the ocean would create waves almost a mile high that would sweep inland.
The military man says that all the seismic activity could release another wave that would wipe out the US's European allies.
Sivkov, the president of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems, says that Russia's large inland territory in Siberia will protect it from receiving too much harm.
He raises the stakes for the apocalyptic scenario even further by saying that the tsunami could trigger the Yellowstone Caldera, a supervolcano that last exploded 640,000 years ago.
The explosion would then unleash feet of volcanic ash over all of the United States.
According to Sivkov, Russia could also trigger just the volcano with a 'relatively small' megaton blast because it has shown signs of activity.
Sivkov said that the normal nuclear deterrent was not good enough and too expensive given Russia's economic problems.
While he is convinced of his idea, it remains to be seen if the tsunami and the litany of destruction that followed would be even be possible if the world came to nuclear war. Read the rest here:
Here's the Latest Sneaky Government Scam
Check your bill and the latest Federal govt land grab today via E.O.
Feb. 20, 2015
Today I had occasion to peruse our latest Colorado Natural Gas bill. We pay up anywhere from a month to a year in advance so I had no idea where we were on our account.
Went online and saw that we have a $25 credit.
Looking further into this bill, charges appeared that I had no idea what they are for (in red):
Amount for Actual Gas Usage: $226.53
Facility Charge: $14.00
DSM-Energy Efficiency Prig $1.17
Customer Assistance Program Fee $.28
The first 2 are easy to understand. One is for the amount of gas used and the second line is the amount charged for getting their gas to our home.
The last 2 were stumpers.
COLORADO NATURAL GAS, INC
7810 Shaffer Pkwy, Suite 120
PO Box 270868
Littleton, CO 80127
and asked just what is up what those mysteriously coded charges.
Talked to "Robert" and when skewered, he admitted that they are charges to fund poor people in our area.
On our paper bill every month, there is a line that allows you to add an amount to help the poor. It clearly reads "Energy Outreach Voluntary Donation".
There is no ambiguity here. There is no mystery. It is yet a 3rd attempt to extract $$ from your wallet.
When Stan and I first moved to Pueblo West in March 2001, the only option was propane. It was all good and to this day, we've kept our 500 gallon propane tank in the backyard – just in case things go south. Stan fills our BBQ grill tanks from this and it literally saves hundreds of dollars every year. Plus, when things might get jammed up, we always have fuel.
I asked the customer service person how many households Colorado Natural Gas provides. They serve us rurally located people throughout 3 states: Colorado, Kansas and Missouri. Over this tri-state area, they provide natural gas to 42,000 households.
Stan and I are pretty much middle-of-the-road for usage. There's just the 2 of us + 2 dogs who think they are people. At times, as you read for Stan's Super Surprise birthday last weekend, we have house guests and it cranks up. So I'm thinking, we are really on the low side of usage.
Yet every month we are charged, without our consent, an extra $1.45. Take that times 12 months over the 7+ years it was made available to us, Colorado Natural Gas is looking at nearly $500,000 in unauthorized charges. Who knows if the poor even see these benefits or does it goes straight into Colorado Natural Gas' fat wallet?
Stan and I tithe regularly. We've given to street people and charities and homeless foundations as well as the Red Cross, the Salvation Army, Wayside Cross Rescue Mission and Posada, and other agencies. WE make that choice, not those raping our wallets.
When talking with the Colorado Natural Gas representative, he said it was out of their hands, not their responsibility, and to complain to our Congressman.
Called Scott Tipton's office in Washington and they denied ALL knowledge. I shared that a website blast would be forthcoming about their underhanded tactics, and so you have it. Who is lying?
Be forewarned. Check your bill. See that you aren't getting similarly blind-sided and squeezed. Giving is one thing; being forced to "donate" is another. Your bill may not be from Colorado Natural Gas, but it would behoove you to check ALL of your bills to see where and how they are getting into your wallet, sneakily, without your knowledge.
ON A DIFFERENT ISSUE: BROWNS CANYON NATIONAL MONUMENT – FEDERAL LAND GRAB TODAY BY OBAMA'S E.O.
Dems demonstrated, campaigned for these 21,000 acres along the Browns Canyon to have it declared a National Monument. Greenies and those that are blind to government land grabs have long stumped, no DEMANDED, this area be a part of government owned property. They put forth, blindly, that it is to protect this area. In local current news footage, it shows this area as pristene, beautiful, perfectly kept, yet they want government to intervene, to own it, take care of it. Locals state it will fall in the cracks for funding and will be ultimately become desolate and uncared for. We Coloradans have always done the right thing by our beautiful forests and rivers, and when do the Feds? Never. It is now beautiful and loved. Come take pictures as it will fall into ruins in the hands of government.
Photo: Does Brown Canyon look like it needs Federal help to keep it pristine? We, Colorado residents take care of it.
That said, the Feds own nearly HALF of Colorado, primarily our best lands. It is well known that Colorado is one, the primary, fallback location when Feds can no longer inhabit D.C. They are taking everything for themselves and the rest of us be damned. Obama grabs it by Executive Order under the Antiquities Act of 1906. Fait accompli. From Feb. 18th's Pueblo Chieftain:
"It's that use of executive power, however, that drew the ire of Republican U.S. Reps. Ken Buck of Windsor and Doug Lamborn of Colorado Springs.
"My message to the president is cut it out. He is not king. No more acting like King Barack. That is not how we do things in the U.S.," Buck said in a statement.
Lamborn struck a similar tone.
"I am outraged," he said in a statement. "This is a top-down, big-government land grab by the president that disenfranchises the concerned citizens in the Browns Canyon region."
He said residents have raised concerns about how designating Browns Canyon as a national monument would affect the area — especially its effect on grazing rights and water rights.
"It is also important for people to note that national monuments created by presidential executive order under the Antiquities Act almost always become underfunded, neglected properties," he added.
Nowhere does government intercede that it isn't a monumental FUBAR. We the people, take care of it; government exploits it.
It's all on local news. Check it for yourselves.
A Stupendous Surprise
Sometimes a plan comes together…
Valentine's Day, 2015
Sometimes a person gets to pull off an epic event that defies the odds. Such was Stan's (surprise) 70th birthday party.
Five months ago, Nate, our #3 son in the line of 4 boys, mentioned in an email that wouldn't it be great to give dad a surprise party for his 70th. After rolling around the possibilities, overcoming major obstacles, that was set aside to see how to make it happen.
Of Stan's 4 sons (and mine by claim), we all live very far apart. Two are in Perth, Australia; one in Shreveport, LA and one in Tyler, TX. The odds of getting everyone here at the same time seemed improbable. They work, have businesses and families to consider. However, some 100 emails and countless phone calls later, that is exactly what happened.
Stan and I rarely feel the need to share personal things, but this was so much fun and nearly unlikely to come together, we want to share this family event.
In December, Nate and Josh, the Perth boys now 35 and 31, booked their flights to arrive mid-day the day before the
February party. Since Stan and I work from home, together 24/7, it's difficult to do anything on the sly, especially since his work station faces mine and he can see over my shoulder anything I do. I have no secrets from him and because we have our own server, he can read any of my emails – to or from – at will. But he doesn't. He respects privacy. Consequently, I was at the computer by 4 a.m. for many weeks so we could 'talk' taking in our various time frames and without Stan's knowledge.
After melding together 4 people's divers schedules, the plan slowly came together, minus a few more hurdles.
Photo: The Boys: Josh, Greg, Nate, Jeff on the deck by the chimenea
THE SNEAKY SIDE STORY
Fortunately, it's been exceptionally warm and dry (not so good) here, hitting the upper 60's and low 70's for 10 days running, give or take. As a result even as long-time residents here, we got a big dose of 'Colorado nose'. You get hit by dried out sinus cavities that bleed and give you a sore throat.
The morning I was to drive to Colorado Springs (an hour away) to pick up Nate and Josh, I told Stan that I had to go to Emergi-Care to get the nose thing fixed. A couple hours later, he phoned to see if I were OK, because normally it's an in-and-out type visit. THREE HOURS LATER, I told Stan, "Honey, everyone is Pueblo West must be sick. I'm still waiting to get in." He sighed, said "poor thing, OK. If you need something, call."
The boys had just landed and thinking Stan is never going to buy this excuse and there's still an hour an a half to account for. He's going to smell something is bulldust here.
Now if you knew me, you'd know patience is not a strong point. In fact, Stan later said he marveled I hadn't told the doctors to go 'stick it' and marched home, unseen by a physician.
Further complicating matters, Nate and Josh's plane was an hour and a half late. I didn't mind cooling my heels at the airport, but what excuse was going to wash with Stan???
Finally the kids got here – literally the last off the plane – and we screamed back to Pueblo West. Good thing there were no cops around. Foot in the carburetor type thing.
THE FIRST SUPRISE
Nate and Josh decided how they wanted to do their surprise on the way home and hid out in the neighbor's pine trees a half block away and rang the door bell 5 minutes later. They wanted to make sure their dad couldn't see them and was completely taken off-guard. At 70, prayed Stan wouldn't have a heart attack. Literally.
To set the stage, we have a large red sparkly Valentine's Day heart on the front storm door. It's about 18" high and the middle is open. So you can peek through the heart and see outside.
Photo: A stunned Stan peers outside through the storm door.
While I dragged beer coolers upstairs for the party, I asked Stan to get the door. He's thinking privately, she's going up there, can't SHE see what's up?
Grudgingly he answers the door and shared his immediate thoughts: Here are 2 salesmen, why are they on their cells?
In a micro-second, he peers through the heart and thinks, why are Nate and Josh here, they don't belong here, they should be in Perth… Well duh, honey… (snicker, snicker)
Stan jerks open the door and is floored to see his Aussie boys. There are no words amidst the hugs and kisses and hellos. It had been since 2006 that we'd seen Nate and Thanksgiving 2013 for Josh.
It was some 30 minutes later when Stan recovers himself and pulls me aside in the hall asking, Are Greg and Jeff coming, too?
Acting annoyed so not to break out grinning, I respond, Be glad you have 2 of your kids here; the others have to work.
Stan took it in stride and was immediately caught up in seeing his youngest.
While we got them settled in, the bell rang again. At the door is some stranger in a baseball cap with a spread-out paper map hiding his face. Greg says in a Louisiana twang, I'm looking for PuABLO West, can you help me?
Stan nearly fell over for the second time that day and enfolded Greg in a huge hug. And then came Greg's girlfriend, Sydney, whom we adore, and 2 of the grandkids kids. (We now have 15 – 13 grandkids and 2 great grandkids.)
After the 4 of them settle in, we start dinner. As grillmaster, Greg is up for filet duty. Hours go by and Jeff who was supposed to be here by 6 p.m. – is very late. His Garmin failed and put him some 45 minutes away. Stan still had no clue his first-born was coming too.
Photo: When Greg, his third son arrives, Stan admits laughing, "OK, you got me!"
When Jeff shows up, Stan is nearly done-for as all 4 of his boys have arrived for his birthday.
Now flash backward a little bit …
With our 8 best friends here, we get together at least once a month for dinner at our homes. We all take turns hosting parties, but see each other nearly every other day as we live close and are always turning up at each other's homes within walking distance.
So our besties all brought food to the party. JoAnne loaned us an air mattress, fetched 7 dozen dinner rolls and took delivery of Stan's b-day cake, so he had no idea. No clue. A true surprise ensued.
Because Stan has his head buried in science most of the time, he took little notice that I cooked tons of food in advance for days on end, moved furniture, brought up piles of pillows, sheets, blankets, bedrolls and extra bedding. He thought it was just for our normal dinner party. Really?
Everybody in the family was assigned a task. Greg's kids, Darren and Danielle, were assigned balloon and streamer duty. This was no small thing as Danielle cut and curled literally hundreds of "ribbon confetti" not shown here. Didn't know there was even such a thing. They didn't just do the dining room, but the kitchen, deck, great room and outside. Greg filled the b-day balloons with helium. We all put up tons of decorations, signs, set up tables, chairs and attended to a bunch of details.
Photo: Grandkids and Sydney just starting in the dining room. They had the rest of the house
to decorate, inside and out.
Everybody pitched in. It took the 8 of us to fully decorate and prepare for that night's party, working the entire day.
Let me reiterate that Stan thought it was our normal dinner hosting party for 10. Not 25. OK, and now there's the kids – and other friends. This was the card made by our 8 besties along with a marvelous gift basket filled with wine and all sorts of lovely things. OK, yes there was no time for make-up! Gotta go with what you got.
Photo: Holly and Stan holding his signed b-day card from our 8 best friends – the 4 couples from our dinner group.
By 6 p.m. all 25 guests arrived. Stan was shaken to his core. He was so appreciative – and (he-he – unsuspecting. Nope, don't feel guilty one bit!)
It took every one of our friends and of course family, to bring it together and it came off without a hitch.
Since when does that ever happen?
Photo: Our party theme was Vintage Dude – the Man, the Myth, the Legend. Stan was all embarrassed by that, but that's how we see him, head of family, and are so tired of the boring 'Over the Hill' birthday party theme. This was a little portion of his party and Darren, his grandson, worked his buns off assigned to figuring candles and holders. That was no small task! It was was new to him. Told Darren to go find what he needed in the loft. Take whatever. He kept saying, "Grandma, can I use this, can I have that?"
"There are no 'mistakes', Darren, do what you like; make it beautiful'.
He raided everything and made it happen and had dozens of candles everywhere. Our home was FULL of soft candlelight and he made it work. Full stop! Great job! Darren is going to make some woman a GREAT thoughtful husband! LOVE that!
Always in a gathering there is some thing that goes amiss, at least a little thing. But this was flawless. In fact, the whole week was… well, perfect.
At the party, we went through 3 gallons of margaritas (yes, I do share the recipe!), 5 cases of beer and more than a few bottles of wine and a TON of food. Everyone was within walking distance and though we had an extra 7 bodies here for sleeping, should there had been someone over the limit and driving, we'd have kept them here. It was a special time to relax and forget all of the extraneous daily affairs.
There has never been a time such as this in our family nor will there likely be that opportunity again. It was a gift…
Photo: Josh, Nate, Stan, Jeff, Greg Deyo
The day after Stan's party, Greg had to drive home some 12 hours away, with kids in tow. He wanted to be on the road by 6 a.m. and still at 8:30 we were in the midst of taking over 400 family photos. While snapping these pics for 3 hours, we laughed so hard our wrinkles now have wrinkles! Cheeks ached from Deyo antics, clever quips and one-liners. All Deyo boys have a tremendous sense of humor, but if one outshines them all, it is Greg. They come fast and hard. He really should sell his business and do stand-up comedy. He'd be rich and could support the rest of us! If you can cite a gift(s) in the Deyo family it is that of smarts, forgiveness and humor.
Without boring you guys ad nauseam with personal details, I'll just state that we had the best week EVER. We talked, shared till throats were dry and raw. We ate out, ate in. Saw movies of importance, like the Atlas Shrugged trilogy and American Sniper again. These boys are our heritage and future. Talked about 'life, death and the universe', as Stan says. We relaxed and yet crammed in every moment with specialness – as much as time allowed. Every single second was precious. Irreplaceable.
In the days following, we took our sons to USAFA – the Air Force Academy, shopping, to the mountains for epic snow ball fights and did the mundane that makes up daily life. It is a time we will never forget…
Photo: Josh, Nate in a snowball fight – and after, in clear blue beautiful Colorado azure skies.
Keep in mind, that Nate and Josh rarely see snow in Australia.
As I said, not much for sharing our personal life. Don't do Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, Tumblr or Instagram. But sometimes something happy, really special comes along, so we're sharing – with you.
Views best with "River Dance"
It was simply THE BEST DAY, no, WEEK of our life. Rockin' on with the fam.
Furious, the ISIS commander sends his next best 100 troops over the dune and instantly a huge gun fight commences. After 10 minutes of battle, again silence.
The voice calls out again: "One Marine is better than 1,000 ISIS fighters."