Our first week at Timber Wolf Lake (TWL) flew by, and we completed a lot of tasks!
The men had 4 shelters to clean, fix and replace wood. They also sanded down the picnic tables for us. The ladies sanded the chairs, painted running boards, stained the chair and tables, and lacquered the indoor chairs.
We were also asked to help at the dining hall, where they needed help with cleanup. I've never seen such a well-oiled system with cleaning up places for 500 kids, dishes, cleaning tables, vacuuming floors, sanitizing tables, then resetting the tables in preparation for the next meal.
I was also shown how to water the 80 plants around camp, which Gail and I will both do next week.
The rains came, then we have a gorgeous sunset to finish the day!
This week was extremely busy. We ate meals with the camp workers, enjoyed working with the teens, really enjoyed praying over the tables (for the kids at that table), and also really enjoyed our time working with Perry and Gail.
The first week is under our belt already! We've met a LOT of great people here, but are also very sore (in a good way), and ready for our weekend.
We are super excited to have finally arrived at our August SOWER project, Timber Wolf Lake Camp. It's a Christian camp that have programs for ALL age levels and groups, and are currently housing over 500 middle school aged kids! Their ministry is awesome, and God has certainly had His hand in developing this camp!
As a SOWER, we are dedicating 3 weeks of volunteer work to the camp, and we aim to help them with whatever they need done, and be wherever they need us most. We are here for them these next 3 weeks, and are thrilled to do this as a ministry for God!
The camp (TWL), provides all their volunteers with housing (if needed). There are cabins available for the longer term volunteers, and they have 12 beautiful campsites for the traveling volunteers, like us. We are working with one other couple while here, and this is the first time for us as a 'GL' (group leader).. I hope we do a great job, but most importantly, I hope we have a super time working together with our new friends Perry & Gail.
Enjoy the photos, and please keep us in prayer for continued strength/healing from our recent run-in with Covid, and for God to use us where HE wants us. Thank you.
I have the details for each picture in their captions.
After staying at Lakeshore 3 weeks, it was time to move on to Standish, where we ended up just lazing around recovering from Covid. We got hit hard for 3 days, but then began feeling better and focused on staying away from others and resting.
However, the resort is beautiful, and I had the chance to watch over 30 monarchs transition through their stages. The first picture is our 3rd released monarch; a healthy female. After her release, all the monarch eggs we found on the bike trail in Davison finally reached their 'J' phase, then the next day worked into their chrysalis. The 3rd photo is our huge site at standish. Nice enough to stay distant from others. :-)
Lakeshore is our 'home resort' where we spend 3-5 weeks of our summer each year. We catch up on doctors, dentists, vet, and of course family! This year was especially a blast, as Maria (and family) stayed a week at the resort near us, and Joe (and family) stayed with us in the camper 2 weekends! There was a lot of time to catch up and have fun with all the kiddos!
*Descriptions are on photo captions.
Thanks to Maria and Bree's excitement for raising their Monarch 'Parker', she got us interested into raising a few of our own. We found a few eggs and small cats, and began. I tell you what, there is a LOT to learn, but OH, so VERY fun! I have the description on each of the photos.
A piece of info. It is illegal to cross state lines with any kind of monarch in any stage. For that reason, we have to make sure we do this process only in MI while we're here. They will all be released by the end of August so they stay in their home area.
We have been planning this site and campground for a year! Reserving site 63 at this resort meant we were at the end of the loop.. Privacy.. Beautiful view, and evening shade.. NICE!
Maria reserved most of a week with us, and we all had a great time! Papa Mark showed them how to look for treasures, and of course we all went swimming together. The resort itself is so peaceful and quiet. Even though it was quite a way from family, it's always nice to spend time here.
Visited brother Nate and wife Barb up at their cabin. It was a cool and windy day, so it wasn't very fun to have a fire outside, but the boat ride was nice and refreshing. Pica does enjoy her new cot and staying off the ground. :-). The guys had a great time together, and it's always nice to get 'caught up'. :-)
We always love arriving at the Grand Haven resort. It's a campground that's part of our membership, so we can stay up to 3 weeks for free. This year will be the first year that we're utilizing our park-hopper upgrade, so we'll see how that goes.
For my note, we stayed on site 226 this year, but we'd prefer 225 next time. We love NOT being under the trees. :-)
A quick trip to Grand Haven is always fun, and even though it was still a little cold, we enjoyed the pier walk with new concrete! :-)
A few photos of one of our favorite parks.. The resort is one of the oldest owned by Outdoor Adventures, and they purchased it from Yogi Bear parks. It has gorgeous trees, nicer spacious sites, and nice people. The amenities include a pool, putt putt, go carts, and a beautiful playground and activities.
Mark and dad went to Washington D.C. via the Amtrak train which took 13 hours each way. They definitely found out it was NOT ADA accessible enough to navigate where they wanted, but with Mark's help, they made it all work. It was a very treasured trip together. One of their main goals was the see the International Bible Museum. They were able to see hundreds of scrolls and bibles, along with the historical record of its preservation.
Back on Mother's, I planted a Lily for mom. It finally bloomed this week! :-)
During our stay at mom & dads, Mark's sister Beth made us a beautiful doily for our table. What an awesome job and a LOT of work!
As we were hooking up the RV in preparation for travel day, mom & dad came out to visit and watch. To them, it's amazing how far (and big) campers have gotten, but it was awesome for us to share all the information they wanted to know. We're starting to feel like pros at this! I was also very lucky to get this pretty awesome picture of them.
This was one of the best travel days yet. Neither of us got very much sleep though, so we were looking forward to taking a quick break at a rest area. Pica was tired too, as you can see her snoozing in her bicycle basket. At the rest area, the bedroom slide is in, so the foot of the bed is right against the dresser. Pica LOVES that spot because she can look out and stay on patrol. We had a beautiful cool breeze with very little traffic at the rest area, so it was quiet! Needless to say, it was a VERY good nap. :-)
Joe and Ashley have been having a rough go of life lately, but are thankfully holding strong and getting through all the challenges. Ashley hasn't seen her son in 3 weeks because the father is refusing to return him. There is a lot of fear for her son's safety, and we are so very glad that Joe and Ashley have each other to get through this.
Anyway, Joe had to work all day, so I spent the day with Ashley having a much needed 'Girls day out'. We had a wonderful time and got to know each other and a more personal level. We ate lunch out, took food to Joe at work, watched the movie Sonic II, then chatted for a few hours before heading back to meet with Joe for dinner. I definitely want more days like this with my kids, we had a blast, and we made some pretty awesome memories.