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Archive for October, 2014

Oct 30 2014

This Side Up

Posted by Mugs @ 9:52 am in Family,school Print This Post Print This Post

Josiah turns 20 this week and I decided to bake him a cake. Birthdays are a big deal to me – every birthday. Many of my friends and family greet their birthday’s arrival with “Meh.” Not me. I celebrate, I bake, I give…unless of course, I forget the birthday completely. (I must be getting old – Josiah is turning 20!)

Coca Cola cake is the easiest to transport through the mail: I can bake it in a 9 x 13 disposable pan with lid; It has thick cooked icing that holds the cake in place; It fits exactly in the post office medium flat rate box.

Shipping to Abby at Bridgewater is a breeze. If I mail a package during the week, it always arrives the next day. CNU’s mail room is not so reliable. It can be 2 or 3 days before a package gets to Josiah.

I baked and shipped Josiah’s cake on Tuesday. At the post office, I placed the box on the counter and said, “This is a cake. Can you please mark it as fragile?” The postman stamped fragile all over the box, added the shipping stamp, took the box off the counter and placed it on its side on the floor.

“Do you have a ‘this side up’ stamp?” I asked.

“No, but we can write ‘this side up’ on the box. There’s no guarantee it will work. On which box?” He said.

“The one with the cake in it. You just put it down on the floor.” I said.

He reached behind. Put the box back up on the counter and wrote “THIS SIDE UP” in bold black letters. Then, he put it down on top of some other boxes.

In a birthday surprise, the cake arrived for Josiah the next day.

“Did the cake make it o.k.?” I asked.

“Yes it did. And it wasn’t smashed even though the guy gave it to me upside down.” Josiah replied.

When I told Dale this tale, he remarked, “At least they’re consistent.”

Oct 24 2014

Hello Neighbor

Posted by Mugs @ 1:31 pm in Family,school Print This Post Print This Post

Early last week, Josiah informed me that his quidditch team would play a tournament at George Mason (2 1/2 hours from CNU – 40 minutes from home) on Saturday. The team would be staying at a teammate’s home somewhere in Northern Virginia.

We, of course, live in the outskirts of Northern Virginia.

Last Friday night, I received the following text from my eldest: “Lancelot’s house is in Maddy’s neighborhood.”

(Maddy is Josiah’s friend from high school.)

“Are you telling me that you are sleeping 5 minutes from home tonight?” I asked.

“Yes and I think he lives on the same street,” he replied.

Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!

Oct 21 2014

Cultivate Faithfulness

Posted by Mugs @ 1:40 pm in Church,Family,Nature,Sightseeing Print This Post Print This Post

NLCC women’s retreat 2014 returned to the beach and the house of sinking sand.

God blessed us once again with uplifting teaching from our speaker Ginger Harrington. She shared with us many encouraging things God has shown her through Psalm 37.

Saturday morning’s session topic “Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness” settled in my heart. Ginger shared how we are supposed to dwell in the present – not live in the “if onlys.” We are to “settle down, abide and reside” where God has placed us – not “camp out next to it” – refusing to fully enter in.

It reminded me of a quote from a missionary of 53 years I had heard on the radio in the weeks prior, “Go where you’re sent, stay where you’re put, do what you’re told.”

I praise God and thank Dale for the opportunity to get away to the beach to spend time in fellowship with my sisters in Christ. They make me laugh and smile and reflect on God’s faithfulness to me.

…And some of them are ninjas.

Oct 21 2014

Dwell in the Land

Posted by Mugs @ 12:51 pm in Church,Nature,Sightseeing Print This Post Print This Post

Oct 09 2014

Pepping Us Up

Posted by Mugs @ 1:58 pm in Family,school,Sightseeing Print This Post Print This Post

The Saturday after Josiah’s college family day was Abby’s college family day at Bridgewater. Gabe was in attendance for this day as he needed to buy the much sought after “truckers hat” that is the rage amongst the students at Abby’s college. The truckers hat is second only to the camouflage shirt (with the Bridgewater logo) as the most popular item purchased at the bookstore. Abby informed us that when a new shipment of camo shirts arrive, the news spreads like wildfire throughout the campus.

Abby’s roommate was asleep when we arrived so within a week, I had the opportunity to walk in on both my children’s sleeping roommates. It’s fun being the embarrassing parent. Just ask Dale. He has an entire repertoire of “How to embarrass my kids.”

Abbygirl in her Roxy flip flops may seem a bit out of her element in the mountains, but she is shining non-the-less. After arrival at Bridgewater, Abby decided to follow her usual pattern and join everything. We heard her play with the bell choir and pep band and admired her improved frisbee playing ability. (She joined the ultimate frisbee team.)

When I informed my sister, Marie, that Abby had joined the ultimate frisbee team, Marie laughed and laughed and laughed.

Admittedly, we Manrys don’t have impressive college sport careers – quidditch and ultimate frisbee – but we are proud of our kids confidence to get out there and give it a go. Once the other two go to college, we expect Gabe to make the competitive chess team and we are already training Zeke to become a cornhole captain.

The family day music concert was wonderful. Abby played her bells to perfection, her only error was her inability to put her gloves on quickly. After the bell choir’s rendition of “This little light of mine,” the gospel choir made us all happy with their joyful singing. The A cappella choir, chorale, organist, jazz ensemble, and trombone quartet were all terrific. The acoustics were wonderful in the chapel. We all enjoyed the concert very much.

Later in the evening, the pep band stole the show at the football game. Abby spent as much time jumping up and down and yelling as she did playing the flute. Zeke’s favorite part was when the pep band beep-beep-beeped when a penalty backed up the opposing team. The drum line was pounding, the horns were blowing, and everyone was singing along to the Bridgewater fight song, including Dale who made up his own words. That’s nothing new for Dale. He is constantly making up words for songs he can’t remember. Occasionally he resorts to “watermelon, watermelon, watermelon.”