Dear Bob, here are some photos of my life here on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I love kids, working with the grounds crew, swimming, playing with my dog friends, and especially my own family people.
We spent part of the day planting and doing yard work after church in Collinsville, then repeated the same back at the seminary. We had Lizzie's boys for a few hours this afternoon and the older two were quite helpful. Ferdie did a lot of contented observing in Collinsville.
The grandsons are having themselves experiences today. Connor is doing the Bubble Run St. Louis which is taking place in the rain in Madison Illinois beginning at the Gateway Motor Sports park. The Bubble Run is a three mile run more for fun than competition and runners go through waves every 3-5 minutes and 4 foam bogs which cover them in different colors of foam. I'm pretty sure Connor will find this amazing. Or maybe not.
Here is how the run looked
Drew and Jake out in Maryland are at an activity center doing all kinds of things including trampoline. But here they clubbing each other on a beam.
Last night the students in grades 1-4 at Christ Community Lutheran School in Webster Groves put on their annual musical, an operetta of sorts before a packed house. There were so many people in attendance there was no where to park in either of the two large parking lots. I ended up in a nearby neighborhood I was totally unfamiliar with. The many people were there for a reason, this was a spectacular production for which the kids had been rehearsing for months. There are approximately something over 300 kids in these grades and they were all in this baseball themed musical. You would not have believed how professionally they sang and acted. No hesitation, no scared/quiet voices. This was amazing.
In the end, the 4th graders were the lead because this is their last year on the Webster campus. Next year they head to the Kirkwood branch of CCLS and that includes our oldest grandson, Christian.
Here are a couple of pictures taken after the operetta ended with the 4th graders (and there are 50 of them) making a silly pyramid.
Christian is on the top left, arms out, cap in hand.
Then who is the one to leap off into thin air? Christian
Here's how things looked, the kids in the play were across the front and covered both right and left sides.
One large seminary event completed and now on to our grandsons school today for Grandparents Day this morning. Then this afternoon to help disperse the large plant and flower order being delivered to the campus. After a quick bite for dinner, it's back to the grandsons school for their Operetta which must involve Christian in a fairly big way because he has been talking about it for a couple of months.
This past Thursday Dale and I flew to San Antonio in order for him to preach 3 times on Sunday as well as be part of a conference. I was able to spend Friday touristing in the Texas hill country with the pastor's wife and Saturday Dale and I did some sightseeing together. I have to say, San Antonio has a lot to offer, it's bigger than I thought, has lots of things to do, lots of history and many people out and about.
Unfortunately I had no ability to get on my blog during those days, it was logistically too difficult to drag along a laptop. You can get a better look at the photos by clicking on them.
First the Texas hill country which was gorgeous with roadsides and fields filled with Bluebells and orange bells.
These flowers are all along the sides of roadways and they may not be cut back until they have completely gone to seed.
The first thing Julie and I did was a bit of window shopping in the very charming and unique town of Fredricksburg.
There's Julie looking at a couple of glass birds.
This was Rustlin' Rob's Texas Gourmet Food, amazing.
Another store had fun things outside the front door.
We antiqued there too and lo and behold I was able to find and buy a couple of Blum Cowbells, originally from Collinsville.
Then we went into a museum I never knew existed, The Admiral Nimitz National Museum of the Pacific War. This was a tribute to all navy and marines who fought in the Pacific theater during WWII, one of whom was my dad so I was very interested in this place.
It was so cold that day and kind of off and on rainy that I bought a jacket in the museum gift shop. Never gave a thought to San Antonio being raw and cold.
Outside is a Memorial Courtyard with photo plaques of hundreds, maybe thousands of men who took part in that part of the war. Some on the walls lived through the war others died fighting. It's quite an expansive memorial area.
There are several of these walkways with plaques all along.
The "MY DEAR" at the bottom endeared me to this sign in a window.
On Saturday Dale and I walked a couple blocks from our hotel to the Alamo. I have never seen the Alamo and was quite taken with it. Many have said over the years that it is much smaller than you would think, but I never realized there was so much more to the Alamo than just the one famous building. It was awe inspiring.
No picture taking was allowed inside of the building itself and you cannot touch the walls either.
In the Alamo gift shop were bumper stickers, the top one which said, "COME AND TAKE IT" refers to the battle cry of the Texans fighting to save the Alamo. I have no need for a bumper sticker but was so taken with that 'cry' that I bought a T-shirt with those words. Dale was probably smarter, he bought a book on the history of the Alamo.
I don't know if you're still hanging in here, but after the Alamo we walked through the famous River Walk which was right outside our hotel. What a marvelous thing for a city to have and the crowds came and came and came and rightly so. It is beautiful with tons of places to sit outside and eat or drink or people watch. Also tour boats by the dozen floated by all day and all night.
People lined up in block long queues
Tables with people eating
The river is below grade so you had to go down steps to get there and up to leave.
There is a lot of river, you go down one block or two, make a turn and head down another.
We had a late-ish lunch at The Original Mexican Restaurant along the River Walk. I did not intend to leave San Antonio without good Tex-Mex. And this place was fantastic.
While we waited for our meals, a group of Mexican musicians came by and played for us. They were amazing and I told our waitress how wonderful they were and she said, "you know they're military". Wow. Our military guys doing music like that in their off time.
On Sunday morning Dale did the Gospel of Mark in church.
We went back through the River Walk on our last night, Sunday, with a pastor friend of ours and his wife. Here's or hotel by night.
Very impressive and what most caught my attention was how many people were out doing things in San Antonio. Streets were filled with people coming and going from place to place, stopping and talking, eating--whatever from morning til night.
And one last impression. I am now a huge fan of Uber, the car service. We used them several times and couldn't have been happier.
It's been a while since I put up a picture of Jake so here he is today, Good Friday, having a fast food lunch out with his parents and brother. It seems by this picture he doesn't get fast food milk shakes that often since his face is pure ecstasy.
I discovered a load of wash on Saturday which had just sat in the bottom of the machine. It was wet, but hadn't been washed. I tried the spin cycle which made the sounds of spinning but no spin itself. So. This probably means a repairman call, but I always overthink these things and do some research to see if I could possibly fix it myself. I waste a lot of time on this.
Our machine naturally does not work when I tried the simple things like rebooting the control panel by unplugging for one minute and opening and closing the door. That was a real piece of advice, sometime the door control gets stuck. Then there are the helpful videos put out by real repair people. Most involve unscrewing all kinds of panels including the back panel, the top panel, the digital circuit panel, all of which I've stopped myself from doing.
The best guess from here is we have a bad circuit board and interestingly, when we first got the machine, the set up guys left a spare. But I'm not at all sure I am up to this.
The worst thing about a broken appliance is that these things are contagious and often cause other appliances to decide to go lame as well.
A couple of pictures I like, one was taken when we went out to DC for Drew's first birthday. Riley was all gussied up for the party and just sitting calmly at the front door.
The other day 3 of our students moved the goldfish which are wintering in the powerhouse to a second tank because the one they were in overheated and the poor fish were gasping. The guys then dumped the water out of the first tank, cleaned and refilled it. What's great is all the tropical trees and plants in this picture. One end of the power house is almost like a greenhouse and we can over winter so many things.
We are also growing hops in the power house this winter and will transplant outside when the weather warms up. This is an experiment to help those around here who are dabbling in making their own beer. Who knew hops grew as a vine.