Friday, December 31, 2010

Last Day

Note: This is what we posted on our web site this morning. We want to repeart it here for those who don't look at our daily messages on the web site.
NOSTALGIATechnically this is our last day with Shepherds. They have been good to us beyond measure and even granted a bonus which means I will still be writing some letters.  It is our way of saying in a very small way THANK YOU. Our 11 years as representative have been some of the best of our lives.   To be able to tell folks about this wonderful place and the care given our daughter Joy for 44 years has been a privilege we will never forget.  To Dr. Wm. Amstutz, Dan DeDonato,the Board and all responsible for this opportunity given us, we say thank you, and our interest and prayers will always be with you and the  vital ministry you perform daily for these precious ones with intellectual disabilities.  God bless each one and may He give you the best year in 2011 that Shepherds has ever witnessed is our prayer.
Ralph andMargie Poulson

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Home going

Our son called yesterday morning to inform us that his father-in-law, John Harder passed away. The memorial service will be held Saturday, January 8th at 2 PM at First Baptist Church in Ferndale, WA.  We know you will be praying for the family these days.  Gina has had a tremendous load caring for her mother, who died in June and now her dad.  The business details she has to deal with are almost overwhelming.  Please pray.
This afternoon we have prayer meeting at church and we look forward to that.  Yesterday Margie was able to do some house cleaning for the first time since her illness.  We are pleased, although I am very happy to do it.  I was away helping a family startup a new computer and Margie did it while I was gone.  She's "sneaky" isn't she. She was so happy to be able to do it.  I cleaned the floors for her upon my return home.  Thank you all for praying.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


The weatherman forecast snow for this morning and he was right.  It's beautiful.  Margie did not have a real good night but she's OK this morning.  For some reason I wanted to sleep in this morning. That's unusual for me. I am supposed to go down the hill this  morning and help a couple get their new computer up and working.  I'm happy to be able to help them.  Margie and I are glad we went to town yesterday and got the essentials taken care of. With this snow, it may have been difficult to do today. I am trying to zero in on a couple of employment possibilities and hope to get that settled before long.  We appreciate your help in prayer about this.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


Sometimes computers decide to stop functioning. That happened just now and I could not publish this blog or our web pages. I will try it now that this blog program finally opened.  Margie had a good night but we are concerned about her morning choking spells.  She had another this morning. We are at a standstill on what is causing them.  We are supposed to go to Bellingham this morning. Tomorrow snow is forecast for part of the county so we want to go today. I am still spending much time on the Internet investigating at-home possibilities for employment. It is a VAST field and requires much study and most certainly Divine direction to know what is right. We thank you for praying for these things.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Countdown: 4 more days

The year went quickly, didn't it?  We were so glad we were able to attend our church service yesterday.  We had a quiet afternoon at home, viewing & listening to a  recorded sermon.  I took several pictures during the service but became unhappy when I edited them.  Editing lowers the resolution of the picture and I went "too far" in the editing and they were not good.  The problem is I deleted the pictures from the SD (Secure Digital) card .
BUT, I have photo recovery software and was able to retrieve all the deleted pictures from the blank SD card.  Oh the marvel of technology. So, one of my favorite verses is Psalm 116:6 "The Lord preserves the simply". I give that verse overload status most of the time. Thank you for praying for us - especially Margie.  She had a good night and we are glad.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

After Christmas greetings

We had a wonderful Christmas day with our family.  We enjoyed an afternoon meal, a nice time of visiting, then left for home.   It took an hour and 10 minutes for the return trip.  It was already dark when we arrived.  We spent the rest of the evening quietly watching some recorded programs.  Today is church and we look forward to that as well.  Margie had a good night for which we are very thankful.  She had a very busy week and it was an answer to prayer she was able to do as much as she did.  We are very thankful.  We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas also.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

We hope and pray this day will be very special to each of you.  Yesterday Margie did nobly as she prepared the traditional brunch for our family.  We pitched in to help and alleviate her load somewhat.  The family as usual enjoyed so much the delicious food.  Today, Lord willing, we'll travel south to Stanwood and enjoy our Christmas meal with our family.   Margie has baked two pies and some goodies for the occasion.  Margie and I are so grateful for the measure of health given.  We treasure these times so much to enjoy family and friends.  We have mild weather here, unlike many places so the travel should be easy.  We'll let you know tomorrow how today's events went. 

Friday, December 24, 2010

Brunch at Poulsons

For years Margie has prepared Christmas brunch for our son and his family. Because of Gina's dad's illness and her mother's death in June, we have changed this to Christmas Eve brunch at the Poulsons.   Margie just came into the office as I was writing this to ask me to get the many things from the freezer which will help her make this fabulous breakfast/lunch which we have savored for many years.   Our children love it and of course the grandkids too.. I am thankful Margie is able to do it.  Although not real strong, she earnestly wants to have this traditional meal with our children.  After breakfast will be gift exchange time.  It will be a fun time. Tomorrow we go to Rawlie's house for Christmas.  This will be a first this year for the reason mentioned above. We'll give some more details tomorrow and Sunday about this.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

It's almost here

Christmas is "around the corner" and excitement is in the air everywhere.  I noticed that the Post Office volume has decreased now that the deadline for deliveries getting to their destinations has passed.  Margie made up plates of Christmas goodies for me to take to two other neighbors of ours.  We received visits from two long time friends bringing us goodies also.  We certainly have to ration the input factor on those. Margie had another choking spell this morning.  These distress us and we cannot find an adequate answer to their cause.  We have tried just about everything.  I made Christmas cards on the computer yesterday.   I thoroughly enjoy this exercise. Our son and granddaughter should arrive tonight and the rest of the family tomorrow for our yearly Christmas brunch, about which we will talk more tomorrow.  Thank you dear ones for your faithful prayers.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pacing oneself during the race

Margie has learned to pace herself carefully so she can accomplish her goals.  She has done well in this and we are glad.  She made cookies, fudge and last week the Christmas Tea Rings.  Most of these are gifts for others. Today she goes to the chiropractor which will hopefully help her especially after her fall last week in our family room. Yesterday I was able to write 53 more letters to churches we visited during our years on the road for Shepherds.  That completes the second batch of such letters, plus numerous e-mails, phone calls and Thank You notes (handwritten) to supporting churches. I have been so blessed to continue my work for Shepherds in this way.  It is all because of their extreme thoughtfulness and kindness to us. I would appreciate prayer for and suggestions about at-home-employment  opportunities. I have researched hundreds of possibilities and as previously stated I need Divine guidance to find the right one.  Thanks for praying

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Getting close

We are always impressed with how fast the days go by.  Here it is almost Christmas.  Margie is making preparations for the "famous" brunch we have here on Christmas.  Only this year it has been moved to Christmas Eve.  She is pacing her self, doing baking when she is stronger and resting as needed. Thus far it has worked out well.  Her fall last week has "encouraged" her to have another chiropractic adjustment this week if the doctor is available. I am attempting to send off many letters for Shepherds today if possible.  And in between, I must keep researching the at home job possibilities because the year is "running out".  Thanks for your prayer support.  Last night I sent out our e-mail Christmas Power Point greeting.  I lament that many will not be able to even open it on their computer, thus I attached 3 different formats, hoping their machines will be compatible for at least one of them.  But we know the end of the story. Some will contact us with the words " I can't open it".

Monday, December 20, 2010

Another week

We started another week yesterday attending church.  What a blessing to be there.  Again last night we attended the Christmas Choir. It was well done.  Today we have to make some necessary trips into Bellingham, WA which should not take too much of our time.  I am still employed part time by Shepherds so hope to get more letters written this afternoon also.  Our days are drawing to a close for that ministry.  I am feverishly researching the Internet for future employment opportunities. Many sound good, but others too good to be true and thus the scare of scams is always present.  Thanks for praying about these things with us.  We appreciate it.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Happy day

We are enthusiastically looking forward to attending church today.  Tonight, if Margie is up to it, we will also attend and listen to the Christmas Choir.   We look forward to it.  Yesterday our family dropped in for a visit and brought our lunch and we enjoyed such a good time.  Margie had a good night, so did I and it will be nice to be in church.  We missed last week because Margie was not well.   Just think, next Saturday is Christmas.  What joy!

Saturday, December 18, 2010


We are puzzled why Margie continues her choking spells. She had two in the last two days.  Previously it was MSG that caused them, but for over 10 years she has controlled it with proper medication from the doctor.  Now it is something else.  She was retested and is taking more medication for things she is allergic to.  So we are baffled with what's happening.  It's harder on Margie, because she NEVER knows when this will happen.  We go everywhere prepared with the emergency treatment she learned years ago and that's about all we can do. Thank you for praying about this.  I am still pursuing the at-home-employment opportunities and have concluded that I am not qualified for many of them and the others that are appealing are sometimes scams. It is obvious we have to have the direction of the Lord in this decision.  Thanks for  remembering us in prayer about this.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Thursday prayer

Yesterday we were pleased Margie was well enough to attend the afternoon prayer meeting at our church.  We always look forward to this.  Each Thursday I review with those present a prayer verse from the Bible and make 3 or more statements about it.  Then I compose a very small poem to remind us of the teaching of the verse. We are please with those who come and always pray more will attend.  Margie had to be on the phone several times due to her doctor's request for a dosage change in her medication. She wanted to clear with the rheumatologist before actually beginning the process. I continue research on at home job opportunities. The possibilities are almost endless if one can discern between the  legitimate and scams.  I have concluded that there are many good choices but my qualifications do not match the requirements. Certainly the Lord has something out there for me, so I can be at home and care for Margie.  This is why we are so indebted to Shepherds for allowing us this privilege during the year.  We will never stop thanking the Lord and Shepherds for this.   Thanks, dear ones, for praying.  We appreciate you more than words can tell.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Good adjustment

Margie had an adjustment yesterday with the chiropractor.  It really helped her and we are glad for the relief because of it. We were not able to attend the evening prayer meeting but look forward to this afternoon when we meet at 2 with others for prayer. I am still pursuing possibilities for employment after we terminate our time with Shepherds the end of this month.  We appreciate those who are praying with us about this.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas baking

Margie has for years made Christmas Tea Rings (at least that's what I call them).  They are more delicious than I can describe with words.  This year, due to her illnesses, we were not certain she would be able to make them for our neighbors and our family.  She prayed much about it, took her time, rested between "acts" and accomplished her goal.  We are thankful.   I took one to our neighbors with a card I had made, and he told me they look forward to this every year.  Margie is pleased she was able to do it.   It also is one of the desired food items she serves at her famous Christmas brunch for our family each year.  On another note, thanks for helping us in prayer about future employment for me.  I may have discovered it last night as I researched the field on the Internet.  If the Lord leads us in this, we will be pleased.  We will share more as things develop.  Thanks so much for praying.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Doctor appointment

Yesterday Margie was not sure she'd be able to get to the doctor after her Sunday episode with illness. Fortunately she made the trip ok and the doctor is concerned that some medication may need to be adjusted.  Margie had a blood test done and we await that report. Margie is mustering her strength to make her yearly Christmas tea rings.  She has reduced the amount she normally bakes because she doesn't want to overload herself with too much. We pray she'll have the strength for this today.  She enjoys giving them to neighbors who have been so good to us, plus have enough on hand for our famous yearly Christmas brunch.  This year that brunch will take place on Christmas Eve.   I am still researching job opportunities in the work at home category. If any of you have ideas, I welcome them.  Thanks for praying.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Not a good day

We were getting ready for church and all of a sudden Margie felt so weak she had to go to bed where she stayed for several hours.  So we didn't make it to church.  It was discouraging for her as she has had such a battle with health.  She said this morning that it appears this is the way it's going to be.  I feel so badly for her.
In a few moments we are supposed to go see her doctor on a regular visit and we pray she will be up to that trip.  Thanks for praying for her about this and her general health.  We appreciate it greatly. We hope tomorrow's blog will be more encouraging.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Job hunting

Margie and I are praying much about our future work.  Our time with Shepherds terminates the end of December and we would like to keep working, if the Lord permits.   I spent a great deal of time yesterday looking at and researching reliable sources of home income possibilities. The reason for this is that this year has taught us the wisdom of my being at home so I can care for Margie.  Shepherds made this possible and we are eternally grateful to them for allowing us this privilege while serving with them. We appreciate your prayer support as we determine just what the Lord will open for us.  Thank you very much.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

An overnight stay

Our son and family arrived last night to attend, as I previously, mentioned, the graduation ceremony of Gina's nephew, Jonathan Oliveira. He has concluded the preliminary requirements for a particular phase of firefighting.  This morning we will do a "Starbucks" and they will return to Stanwood.  Margie "survived" the day after her early morning choking spell. Today I will be investigating some options for work at home opportunities today as we end our present employment the end of this month. We would appreciate pray for this.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Another one

This morning Margie had another choking spell.  Fortunately she was able to control it but not without the initial struggle to get her next breath.  This problem is seemingly endless and occurs at unannounced moments.  There is seldom a forewarning.  Occasionally she has had a hint it might happen and medicated and prevented the trauma of the event. Thanks for praying about this.  We always have the medication handy in case she has an attack.  It goes with us everywhere and especially to church. Today our son arrives around supper time and we look forward to this. I continue writing letters to churches for Shepherds.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Another blessing

Yesterday Margie got a good report from her eye doctor.  With her condition, it is ALWAYS great to get an encouraging word.  Margie also longed to be able to bake some cookies for Christmas distribution.  She made some coconut cookies and they really are delicious.  We are happy she could pace herself and get this project done and also attend prayer meeting last night.  Thanks so much for praying for her.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


As reported yesterday we were going to the foot doctor.  What wonderful relief she got there.  She had never been to one before and could not believe how he helped her.  That was a blessing. We received a call from Donn Mogford, the new west coast representative for Shepherds who needed added information on the files I sent him.  Margie helped me by going through our journals to get more specific dates we visited certain churches. As I write this it is raining and blowing very heavily out there.  The lights evened flickered a moment ago.  I pray we can keep our lights.  If not, I will have to go out and prepare our generator for service.  We are happy we have one.  This morning I take Margie to her ophthalmologist for a regular check up.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Foot doctor

Yes, today Margie sees the foot doctor.  We are hoping he can give some relief for her aches. Yesterday Margie was able to put away the ornament boxes used by Monique our granddaughter to decorate our tree. She also gave the table the Christmas theme. She was also able to send some emails.  All this is very special given the heavy week she had preparing for Rawlie's birthday meal.  But we are rejoicing she did not suffer any from it.  She was so pleased to have the strength to get it all done so well. I continued my letter writing for Shepherds.  It won't be long now and our employment will end.  We are asking you to pray as we seek God's will for our future ministry.

Monday, December 6, 2010

A busy Weekend

This was a victory for Margie and a real answer to prayer.  We have missed Rawlie's birthday all the years we have been with Shepherds.  She really wanted to prepare him a meal so paced herself accordingly and was able to accomplish this.  We are grateful.  Not only was it Rawlie's birthday we were celebrating but the day we had it was their 28th wedding anniversary.  It was special to have them here.  Monique helped Margie decorate the tree, in fact she did it all.  I put the lights on and Monique did the rest.  We were blessed to have the young people from our church drop by Saturday evening and put a beautiful Christmas wreath on the front door of our house.  Rawlie and Monique attended services with us yesterday at our church and that was special having them with us.  After a meal of leftovers (from his birthday meal) they left for home.  What a great time we had with them. We treasure this much and even more as we are getting older. Thanks for praying for Margie's health.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

An added blessing today.

We are blessed to have our son Rawlie and his daughter who stayed overnight with us so they could attend church with us.  What a joy that will be this morning. Yesterday Margie prepared one of Rawlie's favorite meals - Swiss steak- so we will come home after church and have leftovers before they have to return to Stanwood.  Gina and Benny had to return home yesterday, otherwise they would be with us for church and lunch.   It's cold and the north wind is blowing but it's not severe like in many parts of the country.  We are rejoicing that Margie made it through the day yesterday so well.   We  helped as much as we could, but only she knows how to turn out a meal like that.  Margie was delighted that Monique could decorate our Christmas tree.  She did such a good job of it.  In the evening, she read to to us from one of her favorite book.  She does amazingly well, putting voice inflections and animation into her reading which is remarkable we think, because of her age.  But I guess we are biased, aren't we.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Birthday celebration

A few days delayed but just as important, is the celebration of our son's birthday today.  Rawlie was born  in Sao Paulo Brazil so I guess you can say he is also Brazilian. He and his family will be with us for lunch today.  Margie has paced herself well, and I have done several things also to help her accomplish this much desired event.  For the past years we have always been gone on his birthday so this is very special for us to be able to help him celebrate.  An email received last night announced the death of former missionary and pastor, Nathaniel Mictchell.  Margie and I were temporarily living in their home until her trip to the hospital where Rawlie was born.  Nat Mitchell was indeed a great man. Esther, his wife presently lives in Reno.  So this is a big day at the Poulsons.  We trust you all have a good day also.

Friday, December 3, 2010

A great moment

As reported yesterday, Shepherds made contact with us via Skype.  It was a special time, being able to see the place where we have assembled with fellow representatives and others from the staff through the years.  To see and speak with them was a privilege.  What a great tool Skype is.  I speak regularly with my brothers, one in Singapore and the other in Anchorage.  Just this moment as I write, our good friend Siang, who lives with and cares for my brother and his wife in Singapore Skyped us from Jerusalem.  She has taken my brother's place and conducts the biblical tours to Israel now.  This is her first time to do it alone.  Before she has had the capable help of Ernest, my brother, who has been conducting these special trips for years.  In fact, many years back, Margie & I were privileged to accompany them.  We will never forget that experience. Siang reports that there has been a major fire on Mt Carmel and 15,000 people have been evacuated from the area.  In the process 50 have been killed, 40 of whom were firemen.  What a sad story.  I'm sure you will pray about this tragic event and all of its ramifications.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Skype day

Shepherds has schedule a Skype session this morning.   We are looking forward to that and hope the electronics all function so it can happen.  Those who read our web pages know that this week is full of meetings for the church representatives and field men.  We always looked forward to those.  This year Margie was not up to making the trip so we cancelled our plane reservation.  We called our son last night on his birthday and Margie is working the best she can to have a meal for him and his family this Saturday.  In fact Margie may enlist the help of our granddaughter Monique to help decorate the Christmas tree.  We'll update you on this as things happen.
Margie's health is improving slowly.  We know it's a long journey and appreciate so much your love, prayers and understanding throughout this year.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A few more days

We are pleased to have 30 more days to write letters of thanks to supporting churches of Shepherds.We wrote several yesterday and have a whole list for today.These 11 years with Shepherds have been such a blessing to us.  We will never forget them.This week at Shepherds is important because the Church representatives and Field men meet for instruction, information and updates concerning the ministry of Shepherds.  It is only the second time we have not been able to attend.  As mentioned earlier, we cancelled our flight to Shepherds because Margie is not able to fly.  We are asking all to help us in prayer as we seek God's will for our next "assignment".  We have no plans for retirement.  Thanks for your faithful prayer ministry on our behalf.   We appreciate it greatly.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Today is the day we were scheduled to fly to Shepherds.  A few weeks ago it was apparent to us that it would not be wise to even attempt this trip.  Margie is just not strong enough yet to travel that distance. Another complication added to our decision.  Her knees are in very bad shape and the orthopedist said there is no surgery suggested to help. To stand up from a sitting position is a very painful ordeal, as is climbing stairs. We will be looking into a recliner lift chair soon.  Now back to the subject of "nostalgia".  We always looked forward to this trip to Shepherds.  Not only did we receive valuable information as a representative, but to see the other members of the team and visit our daughter Joy was special for us.  Now we must wait until Margie feels she can travel again. We are praying much for the meetings which start Wednesday at Shepherds.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Changed plans

Everyday is interesting because one never knows what's next.   Our furnace started to show signs of misbehaving yesterday so I just got off the phone with a good friend who owns the company that services our machine.  They will be here tomorrow to check it out.  We must go into town and get some matters taken care of today and I will be writing more letters to supporting churches of Shepherds. Another big item for us is that we are not going to Shepherds, as planned, Nov 30 - Dec 6.   Margie is just not up to flying and being out of our comfort zone so we have cancelled our flight, rental car, motel  & parking reservations.  We appreciate your prayers that the flight cancellation insurance company will accept Margie's doctor's papers sent to them, justifying our cancellation.  When I cancelled the flight, they charged us $150.00.  To reschedule for another flight it would cost an additional $150.00.  So I guess if we get anything back it will be worth the $26.00 spent for the insurance. We'll see.  Thanks for praying about this and for Margie's continued health.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

What a privilege

We consider it a privilege being able to attend the church service today.  For so many months we were unable to attend because of Margie's physical condition.  Margie did not have a real good night but finally got to sleep much after midnight. We are sure that after the service she will be happy to spend time in the Lazy Boy recliner and enjoy reading and viewing some prerecorded services.  We normally do this Sunday afternoons.  Our son was here yesterday, caring for some matters in the rental units his father-iin-law has here.  We were glad to have him here for a couple of quick meals and fellowship before he returned to Stanwood, his home. We are grateful to each of you who pray for us.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Another quick visit

Our son delighted us with a quick visit and overnight stay.  He and I will enjoy a Starbucks this morning, then he'll be working on repairing some damage recently done to a rental home his father-in-law owns.  Unfortunately his father-in-law is not doing well and yesterday Rawlie came to Ferndale also to get a bed from the old homestead and take to Everett where a mutual friend is caring for John.  Now a word about Margie:  Yesterday she was able to do all the washing, drying, folding of clothes and ironing, plus prepare a simple meal for our son who is with us for a few hours.  Today we prepare for our time at church tomorrow and always look forward to this.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Safe trip

Even though there was much snow up here on the hill, the freeway was not so bad.  We soon noticed that the inclement weather did not keep many people at home. When we were within 500 feet from our son's house, we could not make it up the incline.  After 3 attempts, I called Rawlie, who came in his 4 wheel drive vehicle and got Margie and I sought out another route to reach his house.  It also had a climb to it, but thankfully I made it OK.. We enjoyed our time with the family.  Our grandson Nathan and daughter-in-law Gina, prepared a wonderful meal..Margie provided the pies.  Because of the road conditions, we left at 3:30 to take advantage of the daylight as we traveled home. We are so thankful Margie was feeling well enough to enjoy the day fully.  Thanks for praying.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

We are so thankful today for God's blessings on us, our family and nation.  This morning, weather permitting, we will drive the 50 miles to Stanwood and celebrate this day with Rawlie & Gina and the grandchildren and other family members.  If the roads seem questionable for us to drive, our son will come get us. It did snow 2-3 inches during the night here and by mid day is supposed to start melting with milder temperatures forecast.   We are thankful that although for Margie the road to recovery is SLOW, we see progress and are encouraged. You have stood with us so faithfully in prayer and we do not have words sufficient to express our gratitude for this.
We pray each of you has a great day with family and friends.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

You mean -another dental visit?

Oh yes, today I get the crown "installed" on the tooth that was reconstructed after  the root canal.  It's a process isn't it?  I asked the dentist if I could get something cheaper than a gold crown.  NO, was his answer.  Ceramic -like crowns that are also durable, cost even more.   So I have invested in gold for this morning's visit to the dentist. Weather permitting Margie and I will drive to Stanwood to be with our son and daughter-in-law and grandchildren for Thanksgiving.  We are looking forward to that, BUT the weatherman says snow is coming perhaps today and tomorrow.  In the afternoon (Thanksgiving) this will moderate, he says.  If you view this before tomorrow please pray for a safe journey of about 50 miles to be with them.  We appreciate it.  Margie will be making some pies for the meal tomorrow.  We are happy she feels she can do it.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Don Mogford, newly appointed west coast representative arrived at or house in the early afternoon and we got right to work on our going over the suggestions I gave him as he starts his new ministry.  The wind chill factor was 5 degrees.  Margie prepared a delicious chicken supper for us.  Donn loaded his rental car, and headed for the airport in Seattle.  We heard reports soon after that he was going to encounter rough driving conditions.  We pray he made it OK.   We are so proud of Margie and her being strong enough to prepare the wonderful meal for us last night.  I would not want her to do that very much because her strength level is not up to it.  But she sincerely wanted to do this for Donn, rather than make it necessary for him to stop along the way for supper. We are glad she did because roads were terrible down south where he was going.  The weather situation is such plus other health concerns that we are not sure we will be heading for Rawlie's place on Thanksgiving.  We will alert you if so.  Thanks so much for praying.

Monday, November 22, 2010

It's cold

Yesterday I was able to shovel the two feet of snow out of the driveway so we could get to church.  No, I was not tired nor afraid of a heart attack.  How does one prevent a heart attack shoveling snow? By not doing the whole job in 5 minutes.  We had a great time at church hearing a report of pastor Dave and Jim Hively about their mission trip to Greece where our missionary Helen Steele works.  We spent a quiet day at home viewing a wonderful sermon and listening later on the Old Fashion Revival Hour.  What a blessing that is.  Can anyone play like Rudy Atwood?  Today our good friend pastor Donn Mogford comes to get some information from us on how we did our 11 years representing Shepherds.  He is the newly appointed replacement for us.  We pray he has a safe trip by air from Boise, ID then a good drive from the airport to our town.  Snow is forecast in the Seattle area and the wind chill here in Ferndale is 5 degrees.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Ups and downs

It appears Margie's work on Friday left her pretty well washed out yesterday.  I must insist on doing some things she really wants to do. But we are encouraged by what she can do.  We just have to pace her steps more carefully.  I walked down to get the mail yesterday over treacherous ice and snow.  Margie watched every step I took praying I would not fall.  This morning, in a few minutes, I will be shoveling the snow out of our driveway so we can get the car out and get to church. There are snow drifts at least 2 ft. deep.  I am bundled up with plenty of clothing, because the northeast winds are blowing and THEY ARE COLD.  Wind chill now is 18 F.  It is supposed to snow.  We look forward to being able to be in church, IF our car can get down the hill into Ferndale this morning.  Thanks for praying.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Fierce winds and snow

As I write, the wind is whipping the dry snow into clouds.  We live at the end of the cul-de-sac and our driveway gets the "benefit" of all the drifting.  If we desire to get out of our driveway, I must shovel snow today.  I have done it many times.  I guess I am just a "chicken" when it comes to getting out into the cold.  Yesterday and today I will continue preparing for Donn Mogford's arrival to get help for his new position as West Coast Representative for Shepherds.  Margie and I are thankful for a warm house.  With over 40 mph winds blowing the furnace gets a lot of work.  It is below freezing now at 8 AM.  Margie did all the washing, folding and ironing yesterday.  I offered to help but she did it all.  We are grateful she CAN.  Thanks for praying.

Friday, November 19, 2010

cooler weather

It snowed a little here last night and more is coming.  I will drive Margie to the beauty shop this morning. I am in the process of applying for a refund on our plane passage to Shepherds.  Even with the cancellation insurance, we may have to pay because we CANCELLED the trip.If so that will be $150.00.  We'll see.  There is so much paper work.  We have to have Margie's doctor sign for this to become effective. And so it goes. Our replacement, pastor Donn Mogford will be arriving Monday for instruction in starting his new position as West Coast Representative for Shepherds.  Please pray he will have a safe trip from Boise, ID by air, then his drive from Sea-Tac airport to Ferndale.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Where did the time go?

We know the answer to this.  Time passes by the second.  Our problem is getting anything done before it does.
We are just grateful we can do anything.  Margie paces her self in order to get some desired things done but not get too tired in the process. I continued yesterday with my correspondence to supporting churches of Shepherds. I am also preparing for the visit of Donn Mogford who has replaced us as of Nov.15. He is a longtime friend and will be here at our house, Lord willing Monday to receive some information from us on how we have done this ministry the last 11 years.  Would you please pray for his safety in travel.  They have forecast snow for this area.  Margie continues on each day at a time endeavoring to get strong enough to function in a more normal way.  We thank you for your prayer support.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Every day is a blessing

Margie who has suffered so much with her illnesses said this as we sat in the family room for our devotions.  What a testimony to God's grace.  Yes, we do believe that every day is a blessing.   Yesterday I spent a good portion of the time writing letters of thanks to different ones who participated in our fabulous Shepherd's Sunday at church.  Those memories will linger in our minds.  There was a forecast of snow the end of this week here in Ferndale, so I went to the local tire shop and had our studless snow tires mounted.  While waiting the 1-1/2 hrs. I went to our friends and got their email working for them.  There really is never a dull moment. Thanks for praying.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Now the memories

After Sunday's huge day of presenting Shepherds, receiving distinguished visitors from Shepherds, and the wonderful time with our family, yesterday was filled with special memories.We will not forget those precious times.  I went to the church to take down our Shepherd's display and drop off a letter at the Post Office. Margie prepared lunch and did some other chores around the house. I spent some time in the morning, getting our web pages updated and the blog for the day finished.  Today I must change our plane  reservations and see if they will allow to use them at a later date.  As mentioned before, we will not be going to Shepherds this month as previously planned.  Margie is not up to the travel and we are content to be home.   We thank you for your faithful prayer support during this year of her illness.

Monday, November 15, 2010

A day we'll never forget

Sunday, November 14, 2010 at First Baptist Church, in Ferndale, Wasghington was one of the most memorable we have experienced.  Our web site gives all the details and we invite you to look at it.  But in summary, our pastor on a missions trip to Greece gave greetings via video feed.  The chairman of the board presented us with an engraved plaque honoring our years with Shepherds as representative.  All this was before my part in the service.  Then he said there's one more thing, and down the isle of the church came Jim Edgar, Shepherd's board member and Dan DiDonato, V.P. of the Shepherd's Foundation to present us with another plaque and read a letter from Dr. Amstutz, President of Shepherds.  It was a moving time.  Our son Rawlie and his wife Gina treated us all, including the Shepherd's men to lunch at the Red Robiin in Bellingham.  What a day it was and we will never forget it.   We have been so blessed to have a small part in this great ministry.  Margie "survived" the day well and we had a quiet restful remainder of the day at home with sweet memories of the day's happenings.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Shepherds Sunday

Today is Shepherds Sunday in many churches across the land.   We have the privilege of doing this in our home church.  Yesterday I went to set up our display.  This is the only time in 2010 we have done a presentation and also the last time as representative. We are looking forward to a great day.   Our family is coming also and it will be nice to have them all in the service. Margie had a good night and we are glad for that.  We appreciate so much your faithful prayer support.

Friday, November 12, 2010

In case you haven't heard

Several know this already, but we have cancelled plans for our trip to Union Grove, Wisconsin to visit our daughter at Shepherds and  attend the end of the year activities and business sessions for church representatives.  Our term of service goes until the end of the year and we really wanted to be there, but Margie's overall health does not permit us to travel.  We are content to stay home.  We are expecting our son to arrive mid afternoon and stay over the week end.  He and his family want to be here for our Shepherds Sunday.   We are so glad they can attend. Margie is doing fairly well.  We are concerned that she feels badly each evening before going to bed and we don't know what's causing this discomfort.  One day at a time we try to figure out these issues that she experiences.  I wish I could "take" them and relieve her.  Please continue your prayers. We appreciate it.

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Margie saw the doctor yesterday and sadly we report that for Margie's aching knees there is apparently no cure. He suggested she use a thick pillow or cushion in chairs, and some leg exercises to help strengthen things.  We pray that will help and she will get some relief.  From a sitting position, she has MUCH trouble standing up.  Yesterday I had the third session for my root canal tooth.  I had the old filling removed and completely reconstructed.  Then a temporary crown was made.  That session took 3-1/2 hrs.  I go Nov 24 to get the permanent crown "installed".  I am preparing things for our presentation of Shepherds at our church this Sunday (14th)  We appreciate your prayers.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Another session at the dentist

I don't want to be repetitive, but I must tell you that all went well at the dentist.  I had a root canal done on a molar tooth.  Let's pray it "takes" and will endure. I had to come right home and make another appointment with our regular dentist for him to prepare to put a crown on this tooth treated yesterday.  It's amazing that these two days (actually 3) will be the equivalent of a month's salary for a part time worker.  This is much different than the dental work done along the banks of the Amazon years ago when the only drill used was powered by a bicycle pedaling machine (made from bicycle pedals, we are sure).  Ouch, that drill didn't go very fast and you really felt it. I don't even think we had Novocaine either.   I haven't forgotten.   We leave shortly to take Margie to an orthopedist. She can scarcely get out of the chair because of severe pains in her knees.  Please pray she can get some help.  Yes, we have been to a FEW doctors this year.  I think we take first place in that contest. Thanks so much for praying.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Repeat performance

As already reported, Saturday we had a simple meal together with Rawlie's family and Margie thought it would be nice to have them again on Sunday after church.  Rawlie & Gina actually provided the main meal and Margie made a salad.  Two other friends came with them and we enjoyed a nice time together.  Rawlie and I enjoyed a Starbucks early Sunday morning before church.  After the family left our place, Margie & I washed and dried the dishes, and watched recorded church services on our TV.  We spent a quiet evening at home, thanking the Lord for the privilege of seeing our family again.  Next week we'll have them again because I will be speaking at our church for Shepherds Sunday.   

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Family visit

What a thrill to have our family here for a few hours.  Rawlie & Gina and Monique are up for the week end.  Yesterday they had lunch with us.  Margie was able to prepare a simple meal which we all enjoyed.  Today we will be in church and have lunch with our family again.  We don't have this opportunity often so enjoy it when it happens.  We are trying Margie on a new medication, non prescription, as a trial to see if it will alleviate the distress of her attacks. We are praying it will help.  Thanks so much for praying.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Work day

Margie is slowly getting her strength back after her recent breathing problems. She was able to wash, dry and fold most of the clothes.  I cleaned bathrooms and the kitchen and vacuumed the house.  She was not strong enough to iron this week, so I'll do that (gladly).  Today, Saturday, our son and his family will have a late lite lunch with us.   We haven't seen them for quite awhile. We don't want Margie to get too tired and not be able to go to church Sunday so we all help her.  She is looking forward to having them.  We never tire in thanking you for your prayer support.

Friday, November 5, 2010


Yesterday the rheumatologist said Margie's lab work came back very positive. We rejoice in this good news. He prescribed a weaker dosage of medication to use on a diminishing scale.  He was pleased with her overall condition and will see her in 3 months.  The trouble Margie had last Monday really left her in a weakened condition.  She is doing pretty well now and we know it is because of her careful monitoring of food intake, medication and pacing herself in the things she does.  This all is an answer to prayer and we thank you who are involved in this.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


This morning I take Margie to the specialist and he will determine how much he can reduce her dosage of medication. After all the trips we made to clinics, doctors, specialists, etc., it was finally this doctor that brought some relief to Margie's severe neck pain.   We are so thankful for his help.  We'll report tomorrow on what he tells her today.  Margie showed signs of more energy yesterday in that she was in the "throwing away" mode.  She went through quite a bit of things and I loaded the car with packages to drop off at the Goodwill store this morning.   This will be a busy morning because we must be back by 2 PM to conduct the afternoon prayer meeting at the church.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

More dental work?

Well, it's my turn again.  After a tooth filling last week, my tooth starting aching.  Yesterday the dentist, after another X-ray and examination,scheduled me for a root canal (my second in two months). That will be next Tuesday. Margie had a pretty slow day yesterday after her early morning breathing problem. It left her pretty well "zapped".  Can you believe the weather in Ferndale? Today it will reach 64 degrees F. and right now the sun is shining brightly. I continue by letter writing and other communication with churches and pastors relative to our Shepherds ministry.  We appreciate so much your support especially for Margie. ( Gasp!!! - Margie just about had another problem as I was finishing this blog but we got it under control)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Sorry to report

I  woke early this morning and went to the bathroom, but before I got there I immediately heard Margie gasping for breath. I switched on the light, ran for the emergency help we give her and sat beside her and prayed.  She had such a horrible time trying to get that next breath.  It's a dreadful ordeal to go through.  If it is for me, think what it must be for Margie.  There are so many unanswered questions.  We have sought and found medical help for this problem for years.  But now the prescribed medication does not prevent the incidents like it has for several years in the past.  Please pray we may be able to find the source of this problem.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Routine doctor visit

This morning, Margie shes her doctor again for routine check up and also medication updates.  As you already know we have made plenty of trips to doctors this year.  We have another on Thursday of this week also.  Yesterday was a blessed day as we fellowshipped in our church.  I, Ralph, participated in the Parking Lot Party which was the evangelistic outreach to the community.  It was well organized.  I spoke 3 times using gospel object lessons for the folks who attended.  We thank you for your prayers for this.  Margie was not able to attend because it was over 3 hours long.   We pulled the curtains on our living room and she stayed in the family room and passed the time reading and listening to the radio.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

A memorable day

51 years ago today in the Peruvian town along the Amazon River called Iquitos, our daughter Joy was born. We were guests of Jerry Russell an ABWE missionary who worked in that area.  Little did we know that Joy was developmentally disabled.  From our base in Benjamin Constant, Brazil, we traveled by airplane to the town of Bogota, Colombia to have her checked when she was over 8 months old.  By that time she was having breathing problems and some other things that alerted us to the fact she was a special child.  The doctors in Bogota thought she was Down Syndrome.  Later it was verified that this was not so.  In the providence of God, years later, Shepherds accepted her as a resident where she has been ever since. Our gratitude to God and Shepherds for the wonderful care they have given her these MANY years is more than we can adequately describe. Some of you have followed our journey with Joy and we thank you for your prayers for us and her and our son Rawlie.
This afternoon on our church parking lot, I will be speaking 3 different times to 3 separate groups giving Gospel object lessons to the trick or treaters who come there.  It is an evangelistic outreach ministry of our church.  Please pray.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Delightful reunion

Margie has been unable to see her brother and sister for some time due to her illness.  But as I reported yesterday, we had a wonderful time at a restaurant in Bellingham.  While there we met 3 friends from our church and it was nice being able to visit with them for a short time.  Margie did all the washing, drying, folding and ironing yesterday and will do some more today. I was occupied most the day organizing my plan for the 3 messages I will be giving at the Sunday night parking lot evangelistic outreach.  Please pray for this event and my participation in it.  I appreciate it so much.  

Friday, October 29, 2010


Margie had a good night and so did I.  My early morning walk went well also.  We meet Margie's two siblings at noon in Bellingham.  We haven't seen them for quite some time.  I am in the countdown for Sunday evening when I speak 3 different times to the trick or treaters on the church parking lot evangelistic outreach program.  I appreciate pray for this as I use object lessons to present the gospel.  The outdoor setting is not the easiest for attention span in children, but we know the Lord is able to use His Word to reach their hearts. Thank you for praying.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Yesterday morning at the clinic we received shocking news that we had arrived too late for them to do it. They apparently only have a 15 minute window in which it can be done.  So Margie's "fast" prior to giving blood was all in vain (no pun intended) that night.  So last night she repeated it and this morning we wernt very early to the clinic and to our surprise it only opens at 8:45.  What a deal.  We live and learn.  But now it is history and Margie was mighty happy to get home and have some breakfast after that long "fast".  Yesterday the dental office called me to change my appointment to an earlier hour.  That was nice because Dr. Meyer was able to do the reconstruction of a molar filling that had partly fallen off during a flossing process.  There's never a dull day.  We attended the evening prayer meeting also and always enjoy that time together with the folks.  This afternoon we have another at 2 in the afternoon.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Positive report

Margie was checked at the dental office yesterday regarding the extraction she had.  She was told that it was healing nicely and she was doing well in her care of it.   We appreciated hearing this.   This morning, in just a few minutes, we leave for Margie to have some blood work done.  This is in preparation for her appointment with the rheumatologist soon after.  So the medical trips continue.  We have had plenty of them and are now hoping it will diminish from this point onward.  Thank you folks for praying.  We appreciate it.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


All was well last night with the laptop computer.  This morning when I booted up, the screen was different and all the files were gone.  I went immediately to Carbonite (the computer owner's best friend) and started the RESTORE process and went to the chat support for further help.  To make a long story short, the printers didn't work either, so I knew if I turned them on and rebooted, Vista "reads" the signals of the printers and installs the drivers. When all came back, there were all the files and all as it was yesterday.  It's a mystery. We are just glad it works.   I had my early morning walk in the dark with much wind and cold weather.  Margie had a good night with the exception of a near breathing problem again. Praise the Lord it was not serious.  But it causes us great concern.  We don't know the cause.  She has been on special medication to prevent them but they still returned so that leaves us with many questions.  Thanks for praying

Monday, October 25, 2010

Weather report

I usually start walking in the early morning before the sun comes up. Today I awakened but it was raining and I decided not to go.  I need to walk and will probably learn from Margie.  She walks in the house from one end to the other - family room to bedroom.  It is actually a pretty good distance and that's how she gets her walks in.  She longs for the day she will be able to go with me. Yesterday we went to our church and it is always a blessing to have the fellowship and good preaching from the Word from our pastor. At home we also listened and viewed a pre-recorded program. Margie did not use the TENS machine (for pain) after her tooth extraction but last night wore it for over an hour.  She declared this morning that it helped her sleep much better last night.  We are thankful.  I will be reminding you to please pray for my participation in the special outreach at our church on Halloween.  I will be speaking three different times.  Please pray for attention and clarity as I present the object lessons.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Privilege of worship

We never take for granted the privilege given us to gather with others today in our church for worship.  We earnestly look forward to it.  For many months we did not have this opportunity.  Even though Margie did not have the best of nights, she is anxious to be in church today.  Thank you for praying.

Saturday, October 23, 2010


We are careful how we report Margie's progress. We are encouraged with any increase in strength and ability to do things.  Yesterday she did all the washing, drying, folding and ironing of clothes.  For almost a year I did this (cheerfully) knowing it was helping her by conserving her strength.  In fact she was unable to do it for a long time. Margie wants to do these things to free me up to do more of our Shepherd's ministry work.  We need wisdom about our attendance at the end of the year activities at Shepherds the first week of December.  At this point in time, Margie does not feel she can make the trip.  She really wants to go, as do I, but if she is not strong enough to travel, we will gladly stay here.  Thank you for praying about this.  We appreciate it.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Extraction report

Margie is "healing" nicely, we believe.  She has an appointment Tuesday afternoon to have a check up at the dental office in Bellingham. The only negative part of this process is her reaction to the antibiotic medication.  She did OK last night so apparently has this dosage figured out. Yesterday she was able to attend the Thursday afternoon prayer meeting.  The afternoon meeting allows some to attend who don't drive at night or are otherwise unable to attend the Wednesday evening prayer meeting.   We are happy for all who come to pray.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Medication woes

As many already know, Margie has experienced serious allergy challenges through the years.  Even now with this medication for the tooth infection, she is not sleeping like she has for quite awhile.  She is trying to adjust the dosage to maintain  its effectiveness but at the same time allow it to do what it is supposed to do - fight infection. Please pray about this.  She was awake for a couple of hours due to this imbalance.  She is hoping she will be strong enough to attend our afternoon prayer meeting today.  Last night we were unable to attend that one.We appreciate your support. 

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Dental report

We asked you to pray and we saw the answer because Margie did well in her tooth extraction.  The paper Margie signed said this about the tooth:  "infected and decayed lower right 2nd molar - tooth # 31". And simply put it said the doctor would do this: " surgical removal of tooth # 31".  It's history now and she is doing fairly well. She took it easy yesterday, eating  at first only a liquid diet.  We stopped at the drug store to pick up two medications she takes.  Thank you so much for praying.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

No boring days

Yesterday was a busy day.  We had several things that had to be done in town ( Bellingham ).  Margie stayed in the car for several of those things as I cared for the business. We are happy she was able to do some grocery shopping with me.   Thankfully Margie had a good night and we are glad because today she faces that critical tooth extraction. We appreciate your prayers for that.  We'll report on that tomorrow.  I will take the laptop computer and work on Shepherds business while Margie is having her dental appointment. On this morning's walk it was gorgeous to watch the sun come up over Mt. Baker.  I always carry a camera with me and took some pictures of it.  Perhaps I will post those next Monday on our photo page on the web site.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Prayer reminder

After a wonderful time at our church yesterday, we spent a quiet afternoon at home enjoying some pre-recorded programs on the TV.  At church, it was the final Sunday of our missions conference and we were blessed hearing the reports from the mission field.
We never know how many people look at the blog, but in case you do, please remember Margie's dental appointment tomorrow where she will have a tooth extracted.  She opted out of the root canal for that tooth, because the one next to it that she just completed is ok but an X-ray showed a problem in this one. The root canal in the adjoining tooth was difficult for her - about 4 hours in two different sessions, so decided to have this one taken out.  The dentist admitted it was problematic anyway so we feel better going this route.  We thank you for the prayer support. With her fragile health we don't want this extraction to complicate things.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Frosty morning

As I looked out side this morning the roof of our neighbor's house was snow white with frost.  It's getting colder each day.  We are looking forward to attending our church service this morning.  Our son called yesterday and we had a nice visit. We appreciate being able to talk to Rawlie and Gina from time to time.  Our neighbor offered for me to put any waste material in his utility trailer, so I cleaned out most of the garage yesterday and boy does it look better. I have been wanting to do it for at least a year.  Finally I got to it. Out DirecTV went out last night and a call to technical indicated it was an antenna problem.  I didn't think so. In fact the technician said we could do the usual routine of unplugging the receiver for 30 seconds and reconnect.  I did and it now works. I was fearful of doing this, like the good old days when the receivers were simpler and not so high tech.  We preset the recorder to capture some of the good Christian programs we enjoy, so after church we can view and hear more good sermons this afternoon. We trust you all have a good day at church also.  We are so glad Margie slept well and is ready for the trip to church this morning.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

New milestone

Margie had a very busy day yesterday.  She paces herself carefully so she won't get too tired. I was doing my Shepherd's work and Margie did all the washing, drying, folding and ironing.  This is a first for her and reflects the Lord's answer to prayer for her well being and ability to do the things she wants to around the house.  I have been most happy to do them all, but by degrees she is taking on more and more.   She still is weak and has to be very careful and I tell her daily, "Let me do it !".  But she earnestly wants to be doing more. We are so thankful for the progress thus far.  Thank you for praying.  We appreciate your concern and ministry of prayer for her.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Plenty of activity

We have to pace our activities carefully because Margie's strength is the governing factor. We are grateful she is doing quite well but she has to pick and chose some activities.  We are thankful we were able to make two visits yesterday to elderly folks (older than us). We also attended the afternoon prayer meeting.  The number who attend varies because it seems everybody is busy.  And we discovered another thing: medical appointments often coincide with the time of the prayer meeting.  We are always happy for those who are there. Today the weather is beautiful. This morning's walk was 42 degrees.  It's getting cold.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

More missionary blessings

In prayer meeting last night at our church we had the privilege of hearing missionaries Everetts and Ovenells.  It was encouraging to hear how the Lord had brought them through their first term and now they are visiting the churches, telling of the blessings of the ministry on foreign soil.  Today we have the afternoon prayer meeting and we are always pleased with those who come to pray.  Margie and I will also be visiting two families who need encouragement. We continue our ministry with Shepherds of preparing computer files, etc for the next representative will take the position we have had for 11 years.  Would you please pray about that?  Shepherds needs God's wisdom as they choose that person.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A great evening

As mentioned yesterday, we were invited to join two other missionary families at the church for a delicious meal prepared by Kathy Golay.  She and her husband, Glenn hosted this wonderful time.  It was special to hear from the other missionaries and contribute a few ourselves.  In typical Kathy style she had prepared food that Margie could tolerate on her gluten free diet.  She is so considerate and the greatest hostess one could meet.  We were so happy Margie felt up to the occasion.  Again last night she slept well and in fact told me this morning she slept through the alarm.  That's great.  I walked a mile and saw the sun come up-even though slightly hidden by clouds.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Getting stronger

Yesterday we had to be in town to do some necessary things.  I was encouraged to see that Margie could endure the trip. Prior to this, many times she sat in the car in the parking lot while I went in to do the errands, shopping, or whatever.  Now she goes and helps.  This is progress and we rejoice in it. The hard time she had Oct 3 has left us wondering what provoked those attacks.  She is on special medication that previously prevented those spells.  We appreciate prayer about this so that we can figure out this mystery.  We will update you tomorrow more about today's activities.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Another week

Actually our week started yesterday and what a great day we had at church.  It was the start of our Missions Conference.  How great to hear the missionaries. We were particularly blessed upon hearing Portuguese spoken by the Everetts, missionaries to Southern Brazil.  This morning, I walked a mile, starting before sunrise and saw the sun come up silhouetting Mt. Baker.  It was also colder and promises to increase as the days pass. Today, besides our regular Shepherd's work, we have to make a trip into Bellingham.  Margie slept well last night. Yesterday at church so many were happy to see her after being absent last week with that set back in her health. Today is a bright and sunshiny day.  Fall is here and we are ready - sort of. (Ha)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Church attendance

We truly hope and pray you don't take for granted the privilege given us to worship in church today.  For many months of this year Margie and I were not able to attend because of her illness.  We never will forget that wonderful day when we stepped into the church for the first time after about 5 or 6 months of being absent.  We enjoy our church family so much and look forward with anticipation to being there.  Pray for your pastor as he preaches and teaches God's Word.  Today our Missions Conference begins.  It will be a delight to hear the missionaries.  Oh,by the way, Margie had a pretty good night.  Thanks for praying.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

No monotony

Life is filled with so much to do there is no time for monotony.  Or is this a problem of age? There is so much to do and it takes US longer to get it done, therefore the day is filled with much activity.  Either way, we are happy we can be busy.  Margie is gaining strength daily for which we rejoice, especially after her bout last Sunday (you can read that on last Sunday's blog)  I conducted a grave side funeral for our dear friend, Sadie Struiksma.  She is the mother of missionary Esther Neufeld.  Esther returned from Mango, Togo to attend the service.  It was good to see her.  Last night I received a call from Brazil from a former member of our church here who was in the Armed Services stationed in Blaine, WA ( nearby) . He was looking for John Harder, our son's father in law. We had a nice long chat on the phone and are now connected via email for further communications. So life is filled with interesting happenings and these take place DAILY.  Isn't it great !

Friday, October 8, 2010

How quickly they pass

Needless to say the days rush by quickly.  We are grateful to be "mobile" - as an elderly friend of ours use to say. Yesterday afternoon prayer meeting was well attended.  Last night I visited a lady who was just taken to ER.  Our pastor also saw her. Today I have a part in the burial of another good friend of ours.  So the days pass with plenty to do. Some things don't get taken care of to our satisfaction but we are grateful for what we can do. Margie is gaining back her strength which was suddenly taken from her through those three physical mishaps she experienced last Sunday.  Margie slept well last night and each report of this, gives us hope for future days. Thank you for being with us in intercession.  We deeply appreciate it.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Getting stronger

Margie's three crisis attacks last Sunday (see former blog for details) left her very weak.  It has taken all his week to gain back her strength  Thankfully she was able to get her glasses yesterday and they are such a blessing. She can now SEE.  What a blessing.  Last night she was strong enough to attend the evening prayer meeting.  We received a phone call from Brazil at noon, assuring us of prayer from our friends there.  That was comforting to hear.  Today we will be back to church for the afternoon prayer meeting.  Thank you so much for the prayer support for Margie.  Without it she would never be as well as she is.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


We received word late yesterday afternoon that Margie's second pair of glasses are ready.  What a blessing this will be for her to be able to see things at a distance.  Up until now, her distant vision has been very limited.  I will drive her into Bellingham this morning to have these new glasses fitted properly. It is rewarding to think that finally this long journey of eye surgeries has ended and now normalcy returns with the added bonus of being able to read and see much better.  The severe attacks of last Sunday have left her pretty well washed out, but gradually she is returning to the pattern she was enjoying prior to this.   Thanks for praying for her and her need for daily strength.  We need much wisdom and direction about a scheduled trip to Union Grove, Wisconsin. We will not attempt this if her strength level does not improve. We appreciate your help in pray about this.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A huge response

I sent out many e-mail notices regarding Margie's health problem Sunday morning.  On Sunday and Monday we received "scads" of beautiful responses promising their prayer support.  We truly appreciate this.  What a wonderful way to get prayer support quickly.  We can remember our days in Brazil when we lived down river (Amazon) from the Peruvian and Columbia border about 100 miles.  A letter requesting prayer would take weeks from the time you wrote it and drove your boat 100 miles to Leticia, Coloumbia, to mail it.  Once my brother was sitting at his computer in Singapore when I sent a request and he calculated it took 20 seconds to reach his desk.  What an electronic age we live in.   Margie had a good night, thankfully but is still pretty washed out after Sunday's happenings.  Thank you so much for your prayers.

Monday, October 4, 2010

God will take care of you.

Please read yesterday's blog for the background for today's blog.  I felt I should send out an email to many of our friends who can't read the blog each day.  Margie & I were listening to the Old Fashion Revival Hour and the quartet sang God will take care of you.  It was so beautiful, emotional and ministered to us both as we realized how much God is in control of our circumstances.  We never desire a repeat of yesterday's happenings but we rest in His providence.  Marge had a fabulous night and we are so grateful, especially after the horrendous day Sunday. We are receiving an amazing response to our email prayer request.  It is very encouraging. Thank you so much. An amazing sidelight is also how many people change their email addresses.  We have "loads" returned undeliverable.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Surprise attack

For a long time Margie has not had a severe breathing spell.  This morning as I was just about to administer a drop of medication in her newly operated eye, per the doctor's orders, she had another violent spell.  We learned years ago through a doctor that Alka Seltzer Gold ( a product unknown to most people) helps in such cases. Well for the first time since she has had these attacks, we had to give her THREE doses at 3 different times. As I write this I have a bell by her side and if she needs me she will ring it and I'll go running. As she was gasping for breath and also gagging on what we presume to be a build up of mucous, I prayed asking the Lord to give her relief.  One more time she called me.  This is a first as far as the severity of her condition is concerned.  I was moments away from calling 911 but she decided against it.  Please pray for dear Margie.  She has suffered so much and I feel badly to see it continue.  We appreciate your prayers so much.  She had complained yesterday of feeling so tired and saying that if she didn't improve, she would not be attending church today. But she had her clothes all set out that she was going to wear to the service. Well, for sure we won't be in church.  We'll have to take the second best and watch some programs on the TV.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

After a busy day

Yesterday we spent almost 2 hours with the doctor relative to Margie's scheduled exam Oct 19.  That coupled with the necessary shopping made us very late in getting home.  It was 4:30 in the afternoon.  One real bright spot in the day was a call from the eye glass company with the news that one pair of Margie's glasses was ready for pick up.  The other will be ready next week. She is so delighted to now be able to read and really see well the words.  Before she was using an old pair of mine that actually got her through this phase and she was thankful for them.  In just a moment our grandchildren and daughter-in-law will be dropping by for a visit so I better publish this and be ready for their arrival.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Medical appointment

Today Margie has another consultation.  She certainly had many of these this past year.  We will take advantage of our trip into the neighboring town of Bellingham to do some necessary shopping.  Our son may spend the night with us today.  He has family business matters to tend to related to his father-in-law who recently was moved to the lovely Merrill Gardens in Stanwood, Washington.  I know they would appreciate prayer for John Harder in his new living quarters.  Yesterday Margie was able to do some cooking, gluten free things she can eat, also delicious clam chowder for our lunch.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

A printer ":glitch"

Our son gave us a very good HP printer several years ago.  This week an envelope got stuck in it while trying to print an address. In removing it, I tipped the printer and when I uprighted it, to my dismay, the desktop had massive amounts of black ink spilled on it.  I think this Saturday will be "fix the printer day".  I hope I can get it going.  I have a newer one but it is reserved for high end printing of documents and photos.  I am even going to drop into Goodwill and see if an old one is on sale for a price (they usually are).  Now to another subject or two. I had good attention last night at AWANA.  I put together a small Power Point and told the story of Evandro Baptista,  I had the privilege of leading him to the Lord when he was 8 yrs. old.  He is now a missionary in Portugal.  This afternoon we meet at the church for afternoon prayer meeting.  We are encouraged with the attendance.   Oh, by the way:  Margie had a wonderful night.  We rejoice in this.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fantastic weather

We are amazed at how moderate the temperatures have been here in the northwest.  They forecast 71 degrees this afternoon.  As reported yesterday Margie had her consultation regarding a tooth she has decided to have extracted instead of a root canal.  Those few minutes in the dentist's office were costly but that's the way it is, even with insurance. She will have this procedure done Oct. 19.  Today I am preparing for my talk tonight at AWANA in our church.  We will also attend the evening prayer meeting in our church.  Margie had a good night, but she said she felt like sleeping more this morning.  Maybe it was because of a visit we made last night and got home a little later. My early morning mile walk this morning was a bit cooler than other days, but as I said, it will be much warmer this afternoon.  As always, we appreciate your prayers.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Outline or details?

When one blogs, you almost have to give an outline or details of what's going on.  Often I give an OUTLINE of what we are going to do today.   The next day I give the DETAILS of what we did yesterday  Yesterday I conducted the graveside service for our dear friend Lucille Shelton then went to our church for the fellowship time with the family and friends.  It was very nice.  It is one of the few times people get together in this manner. Many times I have been told by the family of the deceased, that it would perhaps be the last time such a reunion would take place.  So fellowship times are very important for the family.  Today Margie has a consultation with an orthodontist regarding a tooth she has decided to have extracted rather than the root canal procedure. Tomorrow we will give DETAILS.

Monday, September 27, 2010

A look at yesterday

We had a great time in our home church.  Our pastor was feeling much better and able to be back in the pulpit.
After the service our good friend, Armond Daws, invited us to join him for lunch.  He drove us about 15 miles to beautiful Chuckanut Manor restaurant overlooking the sound.  We had a great time and wonderful meal. He drove home taking the scenic route which was delightful.    Today I am officiating at a grave side service for a dear friend Lucille Shelton, long time member of our church who died Sept. 18.  That will take most of the afternoon as there is a fellowship time at the church after the service.  I am so glad Margie is able to accompany me for this service.  Thanks so much for your prayers,

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Mild Weather

Last night I glanced at the indoor/outdoor thermometer and outside it was 65 and inside 70.  That's amazing for this time of the year.  And these were 9:30 PM readings. It is raining and yesterday the strong winds bringing in the warmer front, were noisy.  We leave in a couple of hours for church.   We are so grateful Margie can attend the services.   For months she was not well enough to do this.  We can only rejoice in answered prayer for her and we certainly do thank you for the support.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The blessing of rest

Margie told me this morning she had such a good night.  For years she hardly ever had a decent night's rest.  We are grateful for the help she has received and the daily strength manifested in her ability to do more. YOU who have prayed so faithfully for us, we appreciate it greatly.  THANK YOU !

Friday, September 24, 2010


Have you noticed how many things are geared to the calendar?  Today is recycle day on the Poulson's street. Yesterday was afternoon prayer time at First Baptist. Today is beauty shop day for Margie to get her hair set. She does not have the muscle strength to roll it like she has done before. This afternoon I pick up some medication for Margie at Walgreens. What would we do without a day timer, journal or weekly planner. On my  early morning walk I took pictures of beautiful Mt. Baker during sunrise. What a site that was.  I hope to post those pictures Monday morning, which is my date on the calendar for that task. Thank you for putting us in your calendar and remembering us in prayer.  It means so much to us.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Unplanned chore

Yesterday it was a bright sunny day.  These are coming to an end, we believe, so I knew I had to get the lawn mowed and trimmed before the rains come.  I had other things to do but now I can focus on these "other things" for a week or so (while the grass grows again).  And old farmer told me that while the temperature is at least 52 degrees F., the grass grows.  He is right for we have experienced this over and over again.  Today is our daytime prayer meeting and the 4th time we will be meeting.  We are thankful for increased attendance and always wonder how many will assemble to pray.  Thankfully Margie had another good night.  We are amazed how long she must use eye drops in her newly operated eye.  It's probably because the doctor is trying to deter the effects of macular degeneration.  We are thankful for his care.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Fall weather

Fall is just around the corner (tonight). Today is a clear, bright day and the temperature will probably be 65 degrees.  The sun is shining brightly. In my mile walk this morning, it was COLD.  Gloves felt good and even ear muffs. Margie hopes to start this walk also. She's not quite ready yet but is getting closer. We are grateful for each night's rest Margie is able to get.  Last night she did well. Thanks for praying.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Margie's appointments yesterday.

Her bone density test was very quick, only taking about 10 minutes.  We had a hospital visit to make and a lot of other business matters to tend to while in the neighboring town of Bellingham,Washington. In the afternoon she had her final eye check then tested for lenses for both newly operated eyes.  She was mighty glad to get that taken care of and we also ordered her new glasses.  She used the same frames but that means she can't read at all without the lenses.  SO, I gave her a pair of my old glasses and believe it or not she is able to read.  She is very happy because it will take two weeks for delivery on her new ones.  Today things are calmer around here and we are glad.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Day of tests

Margie's personal doctor has ordered a bone density test this morning.  After that she has her last check up after cataract surgery and hopefully the test for new lenses.  This all is time consuming. I will do Shepherds work when we return home.  Yesterday was a blessing to be able to preach in our home church.  We are concerned about our pastor who has walking pneumonia.  Please pray for him.   And we thank you for your many prayers for us as Margie comes through this long journey to recovery.  We appreciate it greatly.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Church fellowship

As I have mentioned before, we missed many months of church attendance because of Margie's illness.  The day we were able to step back into our church was a blessed one indeed.  I told you yesterday, our pastor is not well and asked me to preach today.  I am honored to do so and am happy we are here at this time to be able to help out in our home church that has done so much for us throughout our long history with them.  First as missionaries, then as pastor and for eleven years now they have supported us in our ministry with Shepherds.  Today is a very rainy day (rather unusual this year around Washington) but it doesn't stop people from attending the services.  We are used to it.  Thank you for remembering Margie.  She had a good night.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Preparation for Sunday

Our pastor called yesterday after returning from a week's meetings for pastors and their wives. He was in charge of this week and was not feeling well when he left last Sunday afternoon.  He asked if I could preach this Sunday for him as his health was not too good.  I am happy to be able to help him.  So I would appreciate prayer from those who read this as I prepare for that Sunday morning message.  Preaching is always a joyous opportunity. 
And we are grateful Margie had a good night.  Monday will be special for her as she doubtless will be tested for new lenses for her two newly operated eyes. Thanks so much for praying. 

Friday, September 17, 2010

Youth garage sale

I have already taken two or three loads to the church during these past couple of weeks and today will take at least one more.   Our youth are promoting this and it is a good way for us to get involved.  We could have our own garage sale, but letting the young people do it is far easier. Margie is looking forward to Monday when she sees her eye doctor and hopefully will be tested for new lenses.  The two cataract surgeries and subsequent myriads of eye drops before and after surgery have been an ordeal.  It will be delightful when it is all history. More about this on Tuesday's blog.  Thanks for praying for Margie's long journey to recovery.  We appreciate it deeply.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

God's amazing providence

We received an email (in Portuguese) in the "junk mail" box asking us to see the video showing the downed airplane in Venezuela and the 15 survivors.  Because I did not know the one who wrote this to me, and because an email address was given, I responded, in Portuguese, to the writer asking him to identify himself so I would know who was sending this email.  Here is where the story gets GOOD.  A few hours later I received a long emotional reply from Pastor Marco in S. Brazil, who assured me he DID NOT send the email. Someone had hacked his email addresses and sent out this notice. The rest of this story is amazing. In my letter to pastor Marcos, I had given a little of our history.  He replied that I had been his pastor in the Berean Baptist Church in Natal,Brazil for 4 years.  He and his sister Marta were there.  Our son Rawlie and he were pals during those years.  What a story.  We praise the Lord for His providential ways to bring us these blessings we were unaware of. We will be in contact with Pastor Marcos who is a Baptist minister.  We hope you enjoy this choice tidbit of God's workings.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A providential discovery

Yesterday as the dental specialist was completing Margie's root canal, a customary X-ray was taken to determine if all was well.   WELL- in that X-ray, appeared a pocket of infection in the adjoining tooth.  This had not been detected before.  Now Margie must return for the 2nd root canal in another tooth.  Who knows, maybe some of her ill health has been caused by this unknown factor.  We can only rejoice it was discovered in such an amazing way.  We rejoice in the way God leads day by day, even in unusual ways.  This makes it all the more interesting.  Thank you for praying.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Root canal

Margie goes this morning to have the dentist complete the root canal started before her cataract surgery.  It had to suspended until she was stabilized after that.   She said she'll be mighty glad when all this is HISTORY.  I don't  blame her. I will have my laptop and will do Shepherds work while her root canal is being finished.  On my early morning mile walk today it was very foggy.  I carried a flashlight in case I needed to let motorists know I was crossing the street.  It is supposed to be in the 70's today.  It's amazing.  We have had a LONG summer and we are glad.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Taking nothing for granted

This has been our motto for a long time:  We take nothing for granted and every day is a gift from the Lord.  Through Margie's illness this has been such a comfort to us.  Our day belongs to Him.  We follow as He directs. Is there any better way?  NO !   Margie slept well last night.  For years we could not report this. The Lord has certainly worked on her behalf and we rejoice.  Thank you for being part of her journey through prayer.  We appreciate it.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Fellowship with the Lord and His people

Margie and I were not able to attend church for many months.  It was a first for us so we had to learn to adjust for this change in our lives.  NOW we are so happy Margie is able to attend and we look forward with great anticipation. Yesterday Margie did her accustomed ministry of phoning to friends both far and near giving them encouragement.  This is a ministry she had done for many years and we are thankful she is able to do this. It's raining in Ferndale now.  This is rather unusual especially in this very dry summer we have experienced.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

World Trade Center

The whole world is talking about the Twin Towers today.  We all relive that dreadful scene.  We are happy we have hope beyond the brick, cement and steel of buildings.  We  pray that thousands or millions of people have been touched spiritually through this horrific ordeal.  What a wonderful day to declare our allegiance to America. We desperately need to pray for it and all who direct this great land.  Margie and I praise the Lord for His leading and we trust Him for His help for our land.  We rejoice in Margie's daily improvement and thank you for your prayer support during her long illness.  We appreciate you.

Friday, September 10, 2010


We are thankful Margie slept well last night.  We are grateful for her improvement each day.  She will be able to drive herself down the hill where we live, to Ferndale, just 1.5 miles away.  We had the second day time prayer meeting at our church yesterday. We were encouraged with the attendance. Margie is looking forward to the day when she can again start walking in the morning.  I am sorry she can't accompany me each morning on the mile walk.  In our neighborhood there are "up and down" grades and half of our mile walk is uphill.  She just can't do that yet.  But at the rate she is improving, I don't believe it will be long.   Thanks for praying.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

An important appointment

Within the hour we leave for Bellingham, WA for Margie's next appointment with the rheumatologist.  It was this doctor that actually brought the most relief to Margie's severe pains.  We are grateful for his ability to diagnose proper treatments for her particular problem.  Also today is the second day time prayer meeting being held at our home church.  I will be directing this and we were encouraged with attendance at the first one last week.
Weather report.  We had a heavy rain last week and we thought summer was over, but to our amazement, we have had day after day of beautiful weather.  But we know it will come to an end one of these days so we thoroughly enjoy it while it is here.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

A new record

Yesterday Margie was able to drive herself to the Ladies Missionary meeting at our church.  This is the first time in 2010 for her. We are thrilled with the progress.  Last week our "new" weed eater gave out and I have been trying to find another.  The list of line trimmers is large and to examine each one with its specifications is time consuming. I am praying I will make the right decision in a new purchase.  Margie's sleep has not been as positive as it has been in previous days.  She is hoping things will level out and her sleep pattern will return to what it was a few weeks ago. Thank you for praying.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

A delightful visit

We spent a sort of quiet time at home yesterday.  Then in the afternoon our son and his wife and family came by for a short visit.  It was a fun time to see all of them.  Our son took advantage of the opportunity to ask me to make him a latte. I was very happy to do this with the  machine Margie gave me years ago. They were here in Ferndale on business and had to leave and get back to their home in Stanwood, Washington.  We both had a good night last night and I didn't get too wet on my mile walk this morning.  This will be a busy day and we'll talk maybe about that tomorrow.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Beautiful American Flag

When I looked out our front window this morning, there was a beautiful American flag waving in the breeze.  We had given a small token amount to the Boy Scouts several months ago and we didn't know they would keep putting the flag on our lawn at different patriotic occasions. Today will be a slow one, we are sure.  Yesterday was most blessed, being at church and fellowshipping with the folks and listening to a Bible message from the pastor.   Margie had a slow start to her night but finally was able to sleep.  We are glad.  I replaced our old and broken  printer and in installing the new one, a glitch appeared so today I must work on that.  That is always a challenge and I enjoy it.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

What a privilege!

For many months I dared not leave Margie alone and I go off to church.  I stayed with her.  Many weeks ago she started feeling strong enough to return.  What a privilege it is to be able to fellowship with God's people, worship the Lord and enjoy our time at church.  We are truly blessed.  We trust this is your conviction today also.  Because some stores will be closed Monday, we decided to get some necessary shopping done yesterday.  We were pleased Margie was able to do this.  And as mentioned yesterday in our blog, we did enjoy a belated anniversary meal at a local restaurant which has a gluten free menu.  What a delight.  It was delicious and we certainly enjoyed the special time together.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Special lunch

Because of Margie's eye surgery we did not go our for a special lunch on our anniversary.  Today, Lord willing, we will try to do this.  We have found a restaurant which has a gluten free menu and I downloaded it from the Internet.  We are looking forward to this.  We will also take advantage of the trip to get some shopping done.  If Margie is not strong enough to shop, she stays in the care while I run in and do the buying.  It all works out OK.  We look forward to being able to attend church services tomorrow.  We thank the Lord Margie had another good night.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Great weather

One day recently we had heavy rain.  We thought the rainy season was here to stay but the next day it was sunshine again.  Today it is sunshiny and will be in the 70's.  Yesterday Margie had her physical therapy session which always makes her feel good.  Yesterday our church started its first day time prayer meeting.  We are happy for the those who came to pray.  Today, because of the very good weather, I must get out and mow the lawn.  I am pleased I can still do it. We may be blessed this week end with another visit from our son and his family.  We look forward to this.  

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Physical therapy

Since Margie's severe pains started, our insurance has provided her with numerous sessions of physical therapy . But we know that good things have to end some time (except spiritual blessings). She has only a very few left and then that phase of treatment will be over.  We are so grateful however for the little machine called TENS.  We have been amazed at how many people either know about this or use one personally.  Daily Margie uses hers and it does give considerable help to her aching body.   We were thrilled also that my brother (Ernie Poulson), missionary in Singapore, was given one by a family doctor friend for his wife.  She also has experienced help from this tiny machine that packs a "wallop" to pain.  We are grateful for any help. Yesterday at the family physician, Margie had her knees X-rayed to try to determine what treatment to administer for them.  Thanks so much for praying.  It means a lot to us.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Medical help

Margie sees her doctor today.  The doctor monitors Margie's physical condition to know how to regulate her medications, etc.  Tomorrow she will have physical therapy.  Today is the last day for ONE of the drops we put in Margie's newly operated eye.  The other will continue until her testing for new lenses.  Margie's nights have been good and we are so thankful for this.  Before, she slept poorly, which made her  physically worn out and "dragging" much of the time.  We thank you who have stood with us in prayer these many months.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The day after

Yesterday was a BIG day.  The graveside service for Helen Durkin was in the morning and at 1 pm a memorial service was held at our home church, First Baptist of Ferndale, Washington.  Margie's two siblings were able to attend along with their spouses, and our son Rawlie was here.  The fellowship time after the service provides a special opportunity to visit with many folks we seldom get to see.  It was a long day for both of us and we slept well last night for which we are very thankful.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Helen Durkin Memorial

Today our main ministry is the Helen Durkin Memorial.   We will have the grave side service at 11 am and the Memorial at 1pm.  Helen Durkin lived a long fruitful life of 100 years and over two months.  She was a special friend of Margie's mother and a dear friend to all of us.  Our son, Rawlie took off work to represent his family at the service. Our pastor, Dave Lunsford and I will be officiating the service with several family members participating.  We will give more details in tomorrow's blog. Yesterday was a blessing for me to preach in our home church.  We appreciate your prayers as we take part in these services.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Opportunities to serve

We are grateful for a good night and the opportunity to serve today at First Baptist Church in Ferndale, Wa (our home church).  Unless our pastor has improved, I will be preaching in the morning service today.  He returned from a trip with bronchitis and asked me to preach.  I am happy to fill in for him but will be very content if he is OK and is able to preach.  At any rate I am prepared in case I'm needed. Our son, Rawlie will be arriving this evening to be here to represent his family at the Helen Durkin service tomorrow.  We look forward to his short stay with us. Thank you for praying for my ministry today and tomorrow.  I appreciate it.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Busy Saturday

Thankfully we both had a good rest last night.  Today is filled with much preparation for the graveside service and memorial service Monday.  Our pastor asked me to preach the morning message in our church Sunday  because he has a heavy case of bronchitis.  I am happy to help him but I told him we would pray he would get better and still be able to bring the message. Yesterday I had a graveside service for a friend who had a tragic ending to his life. My prayer was that the 75 guests gathered at the burial plot, would truly listen to the Scripture presented and think seriously about their relationship with the Lord. Thank you all for praying.  We need it.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Busy Schedule

Because it is very difficult for Margie to do some things due to her weakness, she found a beautician nearby who remembered her from years ago when we were counselors at The Firs camp.  What a blessing this is.  I will be doing a graveside service at the same time she is at the shop.  She will be driving to her appointment and this will be the 2nd time she has driven this year.  It is close and she will do OK.  I possibly will be preaching Sunday to help our pastor who has a heavy case of bronchitis.  Monday we have another graveside and memorial service. thanks for praying for these responsibilities..  We appreciate it.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Time to heal

Margie's eye doctor said yesterday, as he removed the stitches from her operated eye, that all looks good and now we will wait about a month, and test for new lenses.  That was good news.  She has been so desirous to be able to read.  She is an avid reader and really misses this.  In the meanwhile, please remember me as I help with two graveside services and a memorial service in the next few days.  Thanks for praying.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The amazing northwest

We are thrilled with the weather in our part of the country.  Yesterday we ran the evaporative coolers and we are sure today will be a repeat of yesterday.  With temperatures in the 70's, how could one want anything better?  Hopefully in the next few weeks Margie can start slowly to accompany me on my mile walk each morning. For years we walked each morning before devotions and breakfast in all the 8 states where we represented Shepherds. In other words, we have walked hundreds of miles. As reported yesterday, Margie has the stitches removed from her operated eye this afternoon.  I would appreciate your prayers as I will be involved in two graveside services and one memorial service in the next few days.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Caring for the eyes.

Margie's eyesight has been fragile for quite awhile.  Now with both cataracts removed, we are hoping she will be able to read and use her eyes more. She is encouraged that's for sure.  The many drops per day makes for quite a schedule.  Tomorrow the stitches will be removed.  She looks forward to a month from now when she will have the testing done for glasses.  Thank you for standing with us in prayer.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Reduced schedule

We are happy that Margie's doctor appointment schedules have diminished considerably and this week she only goes once to see the eye doctor.  This will be the second post operation check up.  We think he will give a good report because she is doing quite well so far.  It's a beautiful day in Ferndale and the temperature should be in the low 70's today.  I was able to walk a mile this  morning arriving home before 7:15 AM.  Margie had a good night.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

A first in a long time

I can't remember a time when Margie and I did not attend church together.  But today, she will stay home because she is not comfortable about attending so soon after her surgery (cataract).  I would have stayed home with her but there are some people I need to see and also leave a card in our church mailboxes.  This afternoon we will view and listen to some TV programs.  One radio program I have listened to since a child, is the Old Fashion Revival Hour. What a blessing it is and the music is superb.  And Rudy Atwood at the piano is a treat.
Thanks for your prayers,  Margie had a good night.  So did I.