I can hardly believe it’s been over a week since I last blogged. Most of you know that I’ve been gone for a lot of that time. Ed & I flew down to Redlands for his Aunt Joanne’s memorial service and were gone Thursday evening until Tuesday afternoon. As I’ve told many of our family & friends, we are so thankful that we could go and be there with all of Ed’s family for the celebration of Joanne’s life and to share in the joy of her salvation.
Aunt Joanne helped with some of the planning for the service, and it was her request that it not be about her, but about God….which is of course exactly what Aunt Joanne was all about. She was all about demonstrating, physically, to other people, God’s love. Her care for every person she met was evidence of God’s love for her and His love for each person. When you talked to Aunt Joanne, she made you feel like you were important. Her home was always open and she always served with a smile. All of these attributes came out in the memorial service…from the songs we sang, to the pastor’s message, to the memories shared…right down to the iced tea served at the luncheon after the service. Aunt Joanne always had iced tea ready to serve anyone with a thirst.
After the service on Saturday, Ed & I were able to spend some time with his brother & sister-in-law, his step-dad, and lots more family, including my brother & sister-in-law & nephew who are also part of that community. We continued that wonderful family time on Sunday and again on Monday when we met Ed’s dad and grandpa for brunch. After that, Ed & I had the chance to have a bit of an afternoon date! We headed southeast to Joshua Tree National Park for some sunshine and “bouldering.” You’ll have to check out the picture link farther down for clarification, if you need that.
We flew home this morning, ready to see the girls again and spend the rest of spring break having fun with them. Thanks so much to M,S, & J for hosting us. We LOVE staying with you guys and J, you are awesome! Thanks to the entire DeWitt/Barents clan for a beautiful service and for continuing to share God’s love the way Joanne did.
Here are a few pictures from the last week, just to catch up on the photos of the day:
I didn’t take pictures from Wednesday & Thursday of last week, so here are a few from Friday to make up for it:
Josh and his “lovey” – a Little People Hippo.
Mike & Josh
Coming down the slide at the park!
Blossoms on Mike’s Orange tree
And now Saturday:
This is Ed’s brother Eric and his wife Jacqueline, me, Ed, and Erik (Ed’s step-dad)
And now Sunday:
It was Palm Sunday and Josh walked in with his Children’s Church class waving a red flag! He was so cute, but I didn’t get very good pictures because of the lighting and because when they got to the front he was standing in the back and we couldn’t see him real well.
He’s got good balance! We went to this park on Sunday and we were the only ones there and it was such a gorgeous day! We couldn’t believe we were all alone at this park in Southern California.
Is Uncle Ed wearing out Josh or is it the other way around?
Josh looking down at Aunt Julie through the “bubble.”
Baby DeJong ;)
My brother is such a big kid. He makes a perfect PE teacher, that’s for sure.
And now Monday:
Ed, his dad, and his grandpa.
Large boulder at Joshua Tree
The Coachella Valley behind us. The farthest away piece of land you can see…shrouded by smog…is Mexico! The water is the Salton Sea.
Big brotherly love
I will post Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday pictures tomorrow, hopefully…
Here are the links to web albums of more pictures from our trip. Beware that the captions are directed towards my girls some of the time. We posted the web albums while we were gone so that they could see what we were doing.
I hope you enjoyed getting caught up on my past week!