Tuesday, July 31, 2007

House Update

My time to be online is very short, but I had to let you all know the insurance company has accepted the contractor's bid to fix our house! Thank you for your prayers! Life in a hotel will end soon. YEAH!!!!!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Are You Honest?

Make yourself an honest man, and then you may be sure that there is one less scoundrel in the world.- -- Thomas Carlyle

Finding a few extra moments to spend online at Starbucks, I thought I would leave a short post with a quote for your review. It seems too simple for our complex minds, but we can truly change the world one person at a time. Honesty would be the place to start. First, be honest to yourself, then be honest to your family, and be honest with the entire world. Why is honesty such a difficult thing for some people? Let me hear your take on this subject.

By the way, the big tent is up and camp is ready to begin. I will post pictures of it all when camp is over.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Work Worth Doing

Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.- Theodore Roosevelt

I will be leaving for our annual trek to family camp this evening. This is the highlight of the year for my children because they get to play all day in the wonderful, cool, coastal air. Camp is held on the central California coast and it is a sweet relief from the 100+ degree days of the San Joaquin Valley. The first week at camp, there is a junior camp for children ages 7-14. During this week, my husband is in charge of setting up a tent the size of a football field where 3500 seats accommodate the crowd that arrives the second week for family camp. There is inspirational speaking, singing, food, and fellowship. The third week, it turns into Sr. Camp which is for young people ages 15-25. It is a wonderful time with hundreds of people camping on the grounds. There are tents, trailers, motorhomes, and even some million dollar rigs that fill the grounds and enjoy each other's company. I will try to take some pictures to share with you when I return. Usually, I do not have internet access, but if by chance I get to Starbucks I will check in with everybody. Otherwise, I will not be posting again until August 11.

Before I go, I wanted to leave you with the above quote for your consideration. I want to dedicate my life to work that is worth doing. I know many of you have dedicated your life to worthwhile passions. My prayer is that we achieve our goals. Blessings to you until we talk again.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Ad For Jolene

Just a quick ad - one of the girls in my church decided to try her hand at blogging. I think she is off to a fantastic start. If you have a chance, drop by and visit her at www.jolenejmendoza.blogspot.com

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Age - It Happens

Since Brian's mishap, much has been said about age. In fact, I have teasingly called him a geriatric jock. Our dearest friends, Nathan and Charla Elms, have been making up "old" jokes and enjoying laughing about my husband. Brian has said he is giving up playing except for Vegas. (just kidding) Although many have said he is too old to be playing ball, I have been thinking about my view on age. Here's my philosophy - If you didn't know how old you were, how old would you be? Do we really have to have numbers? If so, I think I am only about 21. Well, in all honesty, I do have days I feel like 90. So, if you didn't know your age, what do you think it would be?

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Thank You, My Wonderful Friends

To all of you who heard or read about Brian's mishap, thank you for your calls, thoughts and prayers. To those of you who may not know - Thusday evening, Brian decided to play baseball with some of the men in our church. He was running from 3rd base to home plate when he tripped and fell, fracturing the radius and ulner. Friday, he had surgery and now has two metal plates and 12 screws in his left forearm. (I posted a snapshot of the X-Ray that shows the plates and screws.) Guess that makes for alot of fun when going through airport security. :) He is now hoping for a speedy recovery. Next Sunday, we are supposed to leave for family camp and Brian always drives the motorhome. I think, I will have to see if Bryce can drive it this year. One thing for sure, it should be much cooler at camp which makes a cast much more bearable. I love all of you and feel so happy to be part of the wonderful family of God.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

New Blog

This post is for the purpose of advertisement. I have recently helped the WAY Choir set-up a blog. They plan to have a weekly devotional, pictures, prayer requests, etc. If you have time, pay the blog a visit and give the kids a shout out. www.waychoir.blogspot.com

P.S. HELP!!! One of the boys posted a slideshow and all of the sidebars moved to the bottom of the page. Does anyone know enough about Blogger to help us solve this problem?

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The WAY Quartet

Here is a clip taken from YouTube of the WAY Quartet performing "Beyond The Blues" in Redding, California on the WAY Choir 2007 Tour. This quartet is comprised of (from left to right) my son Bryce Allard, Lawrence Trump, Keith Smith, and Tyler Sullivan. Hopefully, someone will cough up a clip of the boys performing "Oh What A Savior." If so, I will be sure and share it with you.
DISCLAIMER: It was just brought to my attention that at the end of this video some small boxes will appear that you can click on to view other items from YouTube. I do not approve of the vulgar language used by Rosie in her conversation about Donald. My suggestion is that you refrain from clicking on any of these other links.

Monday, July 9, 2007

WAY Choir Percussionist

Jonathan, or better known as Peto, is the WAY Choir percussionist. This big, lug of a guy is an engineering student at San Jose State University and I think he is one of the sweetest guys I know. He claimed Bryn as his sweetheart this year and thoroughly enjoyed giving her plenty of attention. Standing about 6'5", Peto towers over all the others and his presence is quickly recognized. Although he is an accomplished musician, his devotion to God is even greater. Many times during the tour, you could glance over to Peto and tears would be streaming as he felt the anointing and presence of God as he was used to minister through music. Before leaving our practice room, all the choir members helped to clean the facility we were graciously allowed to use. I snapped this pic of Bryn "helping" Peto vacuum. What a team!
(You can click on the photo to get a better look. I think the reflective sign in the background caused the pic to look dark.)

Saturday, July 7, 2007

WAY Choir Goober

There is always a goober in the group. (J/K, Tyler. You know I love you.) During any moment of boredom, you could find Tyler sticking his top lip above his teeth or Bryce squishing Bryn's face in to some sort of "gooberness." Hey, you like my new word? LOL Gooberness! There is always a load of it on a trip such as WAY Choir tour.

Friday, July 6, 2007

WAY Quartet

Another highlight of the WAY Choir tour, was the performance of the WAY Quartet at half-time. Ken Fitzpatrick, the director of WAY Choir, had asked Bryce if he would put together a quartet to sing during the WAY Choir tour. The quartet is comprised of my son Bryce, Tyler Sullivan of Citrus Heights, Lawrence Trump of Eureka, and Keith Smith of San Diego. All four boys have been involved in WAY Choir since its beginning about five years ago. Each night they sang the old hymn, "Oh What A Savior," and it was so dynamic people were literally pulled from their seats in praise to that wonderful Savior, Jesus. They also sang another song titled, "Beyond The Blues." This was a bluesy/jazzy song that was previously recorded by Ernie Haas and Signature Sound. Response to this quartet was so positive, that they have received invitations to sing out-of-state and also at a Camp Meeting in Santa Maria, California the first week of August. The boys have since decided they will travel to Daywind Studios in Nashville during winter break and record an entire quartet project. I probably shouldn't admit this, but I did tell the boys they surprised me because they really pulled off the quartet much better than I imagined. I hope you all have a chance to hear them soon.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

WAY Choir in Eureka

During our tour, we visited the city of Eureka, California. We took a few minutes to visit a Victorian home. The choir is pictured on the steps of the Ingomar Club which is the former home of pioneer lumberman William Carson. The home was built in 1885 and is now a private club. I included a closer shot so you can see the detail in the architecture. The pink Victorian home was directly across the street. Eureka is a very unique town with very old homes and buildings. For a few brief moments, we felt as if we had stepped back in time. I could almost hear the clip-clop of a horse and buggy. The ocean was within view of this house and the cool, breezy air was refreshing. Wish I could have brought the weather back to the San Joaquin Valley of California. :)
If you are new to visiting my blog, click on the pictures to view them enlarged.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

WAY Choir 2007

WAY Choir - Western All-State Youth Choir just completed a whirlwind tour of Northern California and Oregon and it was amazing. Today I am going to tell you about their performances, and the next few days I will cover some of the sights and landscapes. The choir and band met at 10 a.m. on a Monday morning and had a 10 hour rehearsal. Towards the end of that first rehearsal, the choir was practicing a praise and worship chorus that talked about the name of Jesus. A spirit of worship entered the room and for the next hour and half, the youth were intensely praying. The traveling pastor (my husband) felt he had a word from the Lord for the choir. In essence, the Word was - wherever your feet land, you will be used mightily. The next day, the choir returned for more practice and that night had their first concert at The Rock Church in Elk Grove, California. You can visit their website at http://www.therockchurch.org/ The choir sang a set of songs, took a break, and during the break a quartet sang. The quartet was comprised of my son Bryce, Tyler Sullivan of Citrus Heights, Lawrence Trump of Eureka, and Keith Smith of San Diego. They sang the old hymn, "Oh What A Savior." I must admit they did a better job then I expected. It was a beautiful rendition that was so dynamic it brought the crowd out of their seats. The choir then returned for a second set of songs. At the conclusion, the front of the auditorium filled with hundreds of young people desiring a closer relationship with the Lord. The next day, we went to Iglesia Centro Vida in Stockton, California. This is a large, bilingual congregation. The choir sang some songs in Spanish and repeated the format from the previous night. This service ended with a few baptisms and several people giving their heart to God. The hospitality of this church was awesome. They had rooms reserved at a beautiful hotel for the entire choir. The night was short, however, because the youth had to be at the bus by 5 a.m. to travel to Coos Bay, Oregon. We arrived in Coos Bay at Landmark Church just in time to set up sound, instruments, and a short sound check before service began. This was a very small church and we all felt our ministry there was the "mission" of this tour. The church had a new pastor and he was so thrilled by the response of his congregation. Many choir members wept the entire concert. Truly, it was a most touching performance. The next day we traveled to Portland, Oregon, Apostolic Worship Center. The concert in Portland was held at a large church and people came from Washington and California to be at this performance. Many people gave their hearts to God at this concert and it was a dynamic night. Unfortunately, while the choir was singing someone got in to the rooms where the choir had left their belongings and all their money was stolen. The total was over $2200 and the young people were left penniless. We felt devastated, but the youth joined together and prayed for whoever committed this crime. The next day, the director gave them enough money to eat on while we traveled to Eureka, California. We arrived in Eureka at Full Gospel Tabernacle with only 30 minutes to set up for the service. This concert began and it just seemed as though there wasn't any spirit or energy present, but it wasn't long before a wave of God's presence washed over the crowd. We were later told that more than 20 people had returned to God after being away for many years. In the middle of this service, the pastor told his congregation of the robbery in Portland and stated he wanted his church to reimburse the youth what had been stolen from them. The congregation responded and not only gave enough to restore the money the youth had lost, but also gave a very nice offering to the WAY Choir. Just amazing how God's people respond to need! The next day we traveled to Redding, California First United Pentecostal Church for the final performance of this tour. There were some technical difficulties with the sound when we first arrived, but that was quickly resolved just in time. Miracles, signs, and wonders happened at this finale. The service lasted nearly four hours and it was nothing short of miraculous. At the conclusion, a spirit of sacrificial giving swept through the building and people were bringing, shoes, ties, belts, shirts, money, etc. to the altar. There was over $10,000 cash put on the altar that night. This facility is crowded and the congregation is negotiating to gain a new place - so this offering was greatly needed. Before the choir left that night, the pastor treated everyone to dinner at a local restaurant. Everyone loaded in to the bus for the final drive back to Sacramento. We arrived in Sacramento about 1 a.m. Everyone was exhausted yet euphoric at the same time. My husband and I have traveled for many years with different groups of young people all around the world, but we both agreed we have never been with such a spiritual group of young people. Many members of the choir were used mightily by God. I don't have enough time to tell all the stories, but here's one - a choir member left the stage and walked to the back of the auditorium and layed hands on two people. The people began to pray and felt the presence of God sweep over them. We later learned that the two people had been "away" from God for more than ten years, but because of the sensitivity of this young choir member they were restored. Nearly everyday the choir would begin singing on the bus and they would end up praying, testifying, and worshipping. Even the bus driver would drive with one hand on the wheel and the other lifted toward heaven as he prayed with the young people. I must close for now because I am exhausted, but check back for more. (The pictures are: Top-the choir at The Rock Church, middle left-Anthony of Arroyo Grande, middle right-Sara of American Canyon, bottom left-Bryce and choir in Portland, bottom right-Nicole of San Bernardino.)

How To Achieve

The three great essentials to achieving anything worthwhile are; first, hard work, second, stick-to-it-iveness, and third, common sense.- -- Thomas Edison

I am home (well, back to the hotel) and I haven't had time to download snapshots or even think about a post. So, the above quote is something to ponder until I can get my act together. The WAY Choir tour was incredible and I will tell you all about it - - - later.