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From 1999 to 2003, for 5 years, we have been spending the summer months working as SOWERS at Camp Shoshonah, a messianic Jewish bible camp in Keeseville, New York.  Keeseville is in the Adirondacks, about 90 minutes drive from Montreal, where Ed's mom lives with his sister Mimi and her husband Frank.  During these summers, we spent most weekends traveling back and forth between Keeseville and Montreal to visit with them.  In 2004, our normal schedule was changed because our son-in-law, Gary, was stationed in Iraq, while in 2005, as you know from these pages, our summer was spent in Alaska.

Ed flew up to Montreal in February 2005 to visit, and we had been expecting that the Alaska trip would have brought us full circle to Montreal in October of this year.  However, the events of Aug 18 and a wedding planned for December in Montreal changed our plans.  Derek, Verr, Amelia and Eleanor will be flying up to Montreal, as well as Fiona.  We will meet with the family in mid-December for an early Christmas.

On the way to Montreal in early December, we will stop first at Fort Sill in Lawton, Oklahoma, where our daughter Aimee's husband Gary is stationed, and then for a while in Nashville, the home of our other daughter, Fiona. 

This is a journal of that trip. 

Wednesday, Nov 2

We have been in Lindale, Texas at the Bass Lake Community where we had stored our fifth wheel trailer while on our trip to Alaska.  Al and Ruth Kalb had graciously allowed us to park next to them since March. 

It's taken a lot of time to transfer all of our stuff from the truck camper to the trailer and the storage shed.  We will have to impose on Al and Ruth for an additional period because we are anticipating a drive to College Station later his week to help Ray with his wife Doris.  Doris has terminal cancer, and she will be leaving the rehab center at the hospital to come home maybe Friday to be under hospice care.  Ed and Ray have been friends for a long time as both lost their first wives to cancer.

Thursday, Nov 3

Patty and I have been looking at Bass Lake as a possible place to rent or buy a lot where we could keep our trailer during the winter months.  Over the past several years, we have been working SOWERS projects at YWAM or Mercy Ships in this area, and staying at their respective RV parks.  This year, we may not be working directly with either, so the need for a place to stay.

The picture shows lot 411 which belonged to the Ryman's.  Ed always liked this lot, as it is the only lot with good-sized pine trees, and when he found out that Daryl and Loie Ryman were thinking of selling the lot, he wasted little time in contacting them by telephone.  It took just about 5 minutes of conversation before we had committed to buy that lot.

Later in the day, Ed was walking towards the lot to walk and pray over it.  As he was passing the house on the lot next to the one we had just purchased, a dog started barking.  Lee Stine came out to see what the commotion was, and Ed explained that he was to be a "new neighbor".  She countered that it wouldn't be for long, because she and Les had just purchased a house in Hide-A-Way Lakes and that this house was now for sale.  When Ed told Patty, they both walked over to the Stine property and decided to take a closer look at it.  We phoned to see the inside the next morning.

Friday, Nov 4







We liked it.  In the front are Bradford pears, which are colorful and give good shade.  The property also has an open garage for two vehicles and a storage shed/workshop adjacent to a cover for an RV! The plants were watered with an irrigation system so we could leave anytime and not be concerned about the property. Perfect!

But we had to leave for College Station.  Ray was to be home with Doris today from the rehab center.  Her cancer had progressed to her brain lining, and there was no response to radiation or chemotherapy.  Hospice Brazos Valley was called to take care of her last days at home.  We wanted to be there so that Ray didn't have to leave her for any errands in town.

Saturday, Nov 5 and Sunday, Nov 6

We made an offer on the house. Les countered and we accepted the counter offer.  Now, in four days, we bought two properties, next to each other except for some community property which was a grassy area about 1.5 lots under which was one of the septic systems.  It looked like we had a clean sweep of about 5 lots around the corner.  Later, one of the other lot owners asked, jokingly, if we were going for an agricultural exemption and putting some animals on our ranch!

Week of November 6

I wanted to have the reader know about the last two weeks of Doris' life, although I believe that my telling of stories of her courage and strength and even humor during her last days might be distressful to some, especially the family.  She was a strong, heroic, Christian woman.  Let's just say that her last days were exceptional: she touched many people.  We'll all miss her, but all the while know that our separation is temporary.  We will meet again.

Friday, Nov 11

Doris' grandson Jim was to be present this weekend, so to leave Ray and Doris with family, we decided to leave in the afernoon for San Antonio to see Derek, Verr and their daughter Amelia.

Saturday, Nov 12

A busy day.  We took Amelia to her gymnastics lesson and then brought her to lunch to her favorite restaurant: Panda Bear.  In the afternoon, we took her to a birthday party at Toys-R-Us for one of Amelia’s friends. That's Amelia posing for us, then at the gym, then with sister Eleanor and us. Below is another picture of Eleanor.

We are truly blessed with our children and grandchildren.









Sunday, Nov 13

Return to College Station.

Week of November 13

The last week with Ray and Doris before she went home to be with the Lord on Sunday evening, November 20, in the presence of her family.

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