Monday, June 9, 2014

Adventures In Tennessee~ Part 6

Hello there; hope you are ready for another Adventure in Tennessee post?! April began with saying goodbye to my dear friend Becky. Even though Becky and I are on different continents we still keep in touch through letters and the web. Hoping to visit her in New Zealand someday... Right before she left{in fact while she and Mr. Campbell were pulling out of the driveway} they were stopped by a line of mules pulling wagons! They were all on their way to the annual Mule Day that takes place in Columbia, TN. It was so much fun standing on the side of the road and waving to all the people riding by!
A few days after Becky left Courtney, from Virginia, came to help Rebekah and I out in the once again busy Above Rubies office. When we weren't staying busy correcting tons of addresses for the AR mailing list, we would enjoy time outside. Rebekah, as I mentioned before, loves the outdoors. One day she and I built some sling shots out of twigs, rope, and plastic we found lying around. That was the first sling shot I had ever made and I was very proud it actually worked! =D We would take walks in the woods exploring the land or we would mess around trying to pole vault with giant bamboo stalks. Wish I had some photos of that! ;) It was amazing to me that in just a sort amount of time the woods were soon turning green again. It seemed as if over night the grey of winter soon faded away to the bright green of spring; it made for some lovely walks in the woods!
April seemed to be a time of family visits; Mrs. Campbell sister Kate, with her family, came to celebrate Mr. Campbell's birthday. Kate and Terre's sweet and spunky daughter, Promise, was such a joy to be with. We also had a visit from Mrs. Campbell's brother and his wife. They were both over here from New Zealand to visit family and friends. Mr. and Mrs. Campbell's sons also came to several shabbat dinners with their families. It was always great being around their family and hearing stories from the past. Unlike February there weren't too many parties going on; however we girls did have an impromptu tea party. We all dressed up, fixed some yummy treats, and had a lovely time. We played Amish Manners, danced, and had "blind" drawing contests. We would pick something to draw, like a rose, then see who drew the best rose with their eyes closed. It was so funny to see some of our sad drawings which wouldn't resemble anything close to what it was supposed to be! ;)
Top left pic is of{from left to right} Courtney and Rebekah.
One exciting event was when Rebekah, Rashida, Meadow, and I attended an AR family weekend retreat in Missouri. Unfortunately Courtney had to stay behind to watch over the office since we left early on a Friday morning. :( We traveled through Kentucky and Illinois in route to Missouri; we crossed the Mississippi River{my first time seeing it}, and drove through Cairo, an abandoned town in Illinois with some very neat old buildings.While traveling there Rashida made sure that we stayed active. For about 30 minutes we would crank up the music and do an intense arm work out in which we had to constantly keep our arms moving. It was pretty funny to see and I'm sure we were quite a site for anyone driving by! Once we arrived at the retreat/camp site we stayed busy; we listened to Mrs. Campbell speak about biblical womanhood, watched families preform in a talent show, explored the camp site, and roasted marsh mellows on an open fire! It was a wonderful weekend filled with fellowship, interesting discussions, and so much fun. The camp site had a cave which was super exciting to explore! On our way back home we experienced some mishaps, but also saw God's providently sure to read about it in this post here.
Everyone joined in the arm exercise, even Mrs. Campbell!

Speaking of mishaps, if you have noticed in most of my photos I am wearing glasses but it more recent ones I'm not. That's because one night, while waiting to visit Leah{former Ruby Girl who lives near by}, I broke my glasses! I had taken them off to read and clipped them to the side of my purse, I got up to do something, then set back down only to hear a loud snap. I was shocked; I actually broke them right in two! Not only that but I then lost them at Leah's house. Leah did find my glasses several days after in her driveway, but from then on I went without them. I did, however, buy a new pair after coming home. The funny thing is, I pretty much got used to seeing without them and wear them just when I drive at night! ;) Well that's it for April; hope you enjoyed yet another Adventures in TN post?!

Do you enjoy tea parties? 
Do you like to take road trips?
Ever broken your glasses{that is, if you wear them}?
Like to take walks in the woods?
Please leave your comments below!
Love in Christ,

Photo credits:  Becky, Mercy, Rashida, Meadow, Leah, and Rebekah. Have to say thank you again ladies for the use of your photos!

Thursday, June 5, 2014


Lately I've been...

Visiting relatives before I leave for Washington.
Buying all the necessary things for my upcoming trip.
Selling old toys and such in a yard sale.
Trying to keep cool in this Southern humid heat.
Waiting for my passport to arrive.
Listening to the wind blowing through an open window.
Wanting a camera before I go.
Crying tears of joy because of generous friends and family.
Wishing I could be in two places at once.
Looking through random photos I've taken.
Finding the the photo above.
Reading Mansfield Park by Jane Austen.
Wearing a white cotton skirt and sea foam green top.
Needing to do so much but instead writing this post. ;)
Wondering if I will ever get everything done before I leave.
Watching the Duggars{aka 19 Kids and Counting} with my grandmother.
Loving my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Talking my mom's ear off about traveling, packing, etc.
Going into town to do lots of errands.
Following God's path for my life...even if it takes me across the country.
Drinking water because it's good for me.
Looking at all the lists I've made.
Thinking I need to be more organized with said lists.
Hoping you enjoyed this simple post.

What have you been up to lately?

Love in Christ,

Monday, June 2, 2014

Adventures in Tennessee~ Part 5

Time again for another Adventures in Tennessee post! After all the exciting things we gals did in February I was happy to have a more relaxed time during the month of March. After two months Annie left and I was so sad to see her go. :( However we still keep in touch and I'm very thankful that I gained another friend and sister in Christ! Not too long after Annie left, Mr. and Mrs. Campbell left for a three week trip in Europe for AR retreats. For those three weeks the office was totally in mine and Becky's hands, talk about having responsibilities! Praise be to God, Becky and I kept the office running smoothly. There weren't too many problems. Although one Friday the program we use for the AR orders went down. We were unable to get any orders out and had over 50 waiting for us on Monday! The heater also ran out of gas in the office which made for a cold work space. Becky and I bundled up with coats, scarfs, gloves, and blankets for about two days until Howard{the Campbell's son-in law} came to our rescue. He discovered there actually was an extra gas tank, even though we thought there wasn't. He got it all fixed up; Becky and I could enjoy a warm n' cozy office again! =D There was one day when office work was put on hold as a there was a very pesky wasp in the office. It kept flying around us and since neither one of us wanted to be stung, we spent about 30 minutes trying to kill it. It was actually pretty funny too. I threw tape, coins, markers, and even a roll of toilet paper{not sure why that was in the office} at it trying to get the wasp to move out of the mail bin, so I could swat at it. Eventually it flew to a window seal and as I was swatting at it with some rolled up paper, Becky was standing behind me with a two pronged fork and spatula{both used for grilling} which she grabbed from the kitchen. I guess she was waiting there in case I needed back up! ;)
Thankfully we didn't have the house all to ourselves, Mercy was there too! She was right along side of us helping to clean and cook. Several times Mercy would cook us delicious meals with plenty of hot spices and peppers. Liberians{Mercy native country} like their spicy food! Oh and I almost forgot there was one major mishap, Mercy while cutting open a coconut, sliced her hand open! *If you have a weak stomach don't read the following sentences* ;) It was quite scary as there was blood dripping from her hand and she had a huge cut in between her fingers. We called Howard the family "doctor" but he was actually out of town. We then called over at his house and soon his daughter, Rashida, and sons, Zadok and Sharar, were over with some medical supplies. They took a look at the cut, called to consult the "doctor"{their dad}, cleaned the wound, bandaged it up, and cleaned the counter and floor which was covered with blood. Thankfully there was no loss of limb, fingers or hand. ;) After that experience, Becky and I both thought a course in first aid would be a good idea.
*Okay safe to read.* When we weren't freaking out over serious accidents and injuries, most of our free time was spent taking walks in the woods and watching movies. =D We had Netflix movies coming and going all the time! Some great movies we watched were Miss PotterLes Miserables {both the 1998 movie and 2010 stage version}, Daniel Deronda, The Adventures of Tintin, Rebecca{1940}, Cinderella Man, and Phantom of the Opera{2011 stage version and 2004 movie version}, just to name a few. :) Speaking of movies we also watched the Bourne trilogy with some of the Johnson family to celebrate Rashida's birthday, which was actually back in January. I learned with big families like Rashida's{she is one of ten}birthday's can be celebrated a couple of months late! ;) We stayed up, late into the night, watching them and it was funny as someone would fall to sleep after each movie. I however lasted through all three!
Becky and I would usually go for a walk or run through the woods leading to the Allison family's house. Serene Allison is Mr. and Mrs. Campbell's daughter and lives close by. They have lots of animals; cows, ducks, chickens, and even a dog named Hank! Once when walking back some of the Allison children decided to join us. It was such a delight to always be surrounded by so many children of all ages! Since I am the youngest in my family I felt as if each one of the Campbell's grandchildren were my younger siblings. :) Speaking of family, couldn't write this post without mentioning a very special event that happened while I was in Tennessee. One night my sister called with some special news...she was pregnant and expecting her first baby! I remember running through the house screaming," My sister is pregnant!" I was so happy; I cried and laughed all at once. =D
Towards the end of the month Mr. and Mrs. Campbell returned along with Rebekah from Idaho. They also returned with some yummy chocolates from Ireland! Can you tell I like chocolate as I took three pictures of it?! ;) They came in real late at night, so in the morning Becky and I were trying our hardest not to make any noise. We didn't want to wake Rebekah up. It was a bit odd having someone asleep in our room whom we had never even met. We had no idea what Rebekah even looked liked until we went back to our room, after morning devotions, and she was standing there. I'm sure it was much more odd for her! However after we quickly introduced ourselves and got Rebekah working in the office all the "odd-ness" was gone. =D We were back to being the "three musketeers"!
Not long before Becky was to leave Mr. Campbell took us two to see the Amish in a near by county. Rebekah wanted to stay behind and explore the Campbell's land...she absolutely loves the outdoors! It was a rainy and grey day; it seemed as if we weren't going to see anyone. However we did see several men and women out in their little black buggies. We also saw children playing outside and some young men working in the field. Becky snapped several photos as this was her first time, as well as mine, to see Amish country. That being said, once when she held up her camera a man yelled out from his buggy,"No pictures!" We felt so bad as we didn't realize we shouldn't have taken a photo. It was so neat to step back in time; to see white farm houses with clothes lines on the front porch, red barns dotting the mostly colorless winter fields, and horse n' buggy replacing modern day vehicles. It was hard to believe, that amidst the fast pace and ever changing world we live in, there are still people living in a much simpler time. It was as if time had stopped in this little part of the country and nothing had ever changed. After our visit through Amish country we drove around a bit stopping to look at an old cemetery and the David Crockett museum and cabin. We also explored Lawrenceburg, a small town in Tennessee which has a statue of David Crockett.
Before I conclude this post I have to write about an event which would happen most Friday nights when Mr. and Mrs. Campbell were home. That event was the Shabbat dinner, which was a time to thank God for His provisions and bless others with encouraging words. We usually had someone over for dinner, either the family or friends. Mrs. Campbell would light two candles thanking Jesus for the light He brings to our lives. Mr. Campbell would then read Proverbs 31 and say something to bless and encourage Mrs. Campbell. Mrs. Campbell would then say something to bless Mr. Campbell and us girls. We would recite the traditional Jewish blessing over the wine{grape juice} and bread. Mr. Campbell would then pray, thanking Jesus Christ for the wine and bread which represent His blood and flesh, which He freely gave for us on the cross. We would then break the two loaves of bread and drink the "wine". After this we would commence with dinner, enjoying fellowship with each other around the table. This was quite new and different for me, but it was an event which I greatly enjoyed. It was such a blessed time of praising God and Jesus Christ for all the many blessings we have.
Ever seen "Amish country"?
Watched any of the movies mentioned above?
Taken a first aid course?
Ever participated in a Shabbat dinner; does your family do something similar?
Please leave your comments below!

Love in Christ,

Photo credits: Becky and for movie/Netflix image Google.