Friday, August 15, 2014

Summer is coming to a close. As the last week of summer camp has come to an end, we can tell that change is in the air again. The summer staff know their leaving dates. The full time staff should be taking a breath of relief, and then changing into the conference season way of operations. Although the upcoming month is going to be busy. There are only about 3 days in Aug. with no guest groups on the grounds. It will be a time that the staff can work together to bring glory to God. There are several all call "Quick Turns" and I mean very quick. "Quick Turns" are necessary when a group leaves and another one is coming in within just a few hours. They require all staff to get together and to clean all housing, prepare activity areas, and to set up whatever may be needed for our guests. We are very thankful for the guest groups that come to camp. The kids come to camp and hear about God. Their hearts are open, because it is new to them. When adults come to camp on a retreat, we take the time to shine the light of Jesus by serving them well. We may not see them make commitments or renew their relationship with God when they are here, but we just have to trust the Lord and know that He is at work in all of them as well as us too.
We made some sun pickles. We also were able to can a bunch of mushrooms.

 Here is our wood supply so far. Also the deck just needs stairs and it is done.

Some of the latest highlights of our Summer are Jared’s dad and youngest brother (Caleb) came up for a week long visit. They worked at camp doing some fixing on a cement walk way and some stone work. This was very special because, he took what his Dad (Jared's Grandpa) taught him and used these skills to serve God at VBC.  In the evenings, we were able to go hiking, fishing, canoeing, and 4 wheeling to enjoy God's creation. It went by so fast. It was also fun to see them play with the kids every chance they got. Evelynn loved kissing on Caleb. It was too cute.
Fishing on Shallow Lake
Wrestling with Grandpa Werkema.

Hiking to the Fossil beds.

We have noticed the days are getting shorter. We are loosing about 6 minutes a day. That is about a half an hour a week. We have seen some yellow on some of the trees already. We know that fall is near. It is cooling off at night, which makes for nice sleeping weather. The berries are out in full abundance too. The kids and Kacie go picking and have about 2 1/2 gallons in the freezer so far. There will be more to come because some berries will get better with cooler temps. We are also working on cutting fire wood for the winter. We are about a quarter way done. We make it a full family event working together. Alison and Evelynn's job is to pick berries and keep away from falling trees. Kenten and Nicholas are a big help this year with hauling wood. The boys help move the branches and brush out of the way so Jared can get the four wheeler in place to haul the logs out.  Kacie picks berrys and helps with the heavy lifting. Also here is some exciting news... camp has put a deck on the front of our house. It looks great. It went up so fast and we are looking forward to using it. Plus, it doubles as a wood shed as we are going to stack all our wood under it. We feel very blessed.

All the kids made it to the top of Lion"s Head. It is right next to the Glacier.

All the kids are getting so big

With August being very busy we are making a priority to go on a short but much needed camping trip as a family. We will be going with another family from church. It will be a great time as a family, letting our hair down and making memories together. Both the kids and adults are excited to go. Also we are having Kacie’s parents and a workteam from Forest Grove Reformed Church up at the end of the month. We are looking forward to the time we get to spend with all of them.
We are almost ready to start another year of homeschooling. We have gotten all the material now. We are mapping out when to start and when we are having breaks. Also how many lesson there are in the many different subjects. Kenten is excited for science,  math, and P.E. For P.E. we are hoping to do some hikes, swimming and other outdoor activities. Alison is excited for her new math and reading. Nicholas is just excited to do school like the big kids. I ( Kacie) am gearing up for and excited for routine to help organize my day. Plus I look forward to having supper in the crockpot, working on school, with a fire in the wood stove and drinking tea on a nice cold day. I am very much looking forward to snow and slower pace of life. I love summer but I equally love winter.
We are so grateful for the people praying for us and supporting us. There has been so many things that God has kept us safe throughout this summer.  Through the busy times, as a staff, we were able to work together when stress was high.  We can't thank you enough for your prayers. We are Giving God the glory and praises for this summer. For what He has done and for what is to come. We love serving Him to further His Kingdom. We are so blessed to be able to serve here in Alaska at Victory Bible Camp. We cherish not only our supporters but the staff here working beside us.

Last but not least here are some of our pictures from when we were able to go camping as a family.
Here are all the kids.

skipping rocks on Ruby lake.

Evelynn having fun exploring.

Our view from four wheeler ride.

 The girls playing uno.

 boys playing Frisbee

 trailer full of kids

 Dawson and Alison

 The parade of four wheelers.