Sunday, February 28, 2010

Contribute to Haiti and get a Haitian made figurine

This is an easy way to encourage entrepreneurship in Haiti. I have seven of these figurines, plus some larger art. This one is about 4" by 5.5". It was hand made in Haiti by Haitian artists. If this works, I am going to offer them one at a time at auction. I have nothing invested in them, so 100% of the highest bid (after shipping costs) will go back to Haiti and to the artists' studio where they were created. If you bid and are not the highest bidder, of course you will owe me nothing. Place your bid by an email to Put the word "Bid" on the subject line. Bidding ends one week from now at 5:00 p.m, on Sunday, March 7, 2010.

I am also posting a picture of one of the men at work.

More of Alex's Birthday

You may notice that there are two birthday cakes here, plus some donuts, and at least three sets of clothes. That's how we do birthdays. Don't ask why. There is the occassion of the birthday itself, then the "family" gathering, and the next Sunday morning meeting of the church - not necessarily in that order. These are:

1. Alex lighting the first cake...

2. Gathered with friends and family...

3, Uncle Mark lighting the second cake...

4 Posing uncomfortably at church function in his honor...

Alex's 17th

Here are a few pictures from Alex's birthday. I have more and will post some of them as soon as I find the other camera. The one that that didn't quit on us has turned up missing. ["Turned up missing." There's an interesting phrase.] You can see who showed up in the middle of everything. But I do have more pix of Al, like blowing out candles and stuff. For real.

Magalie taste testing the BD cake icing.

Helping Uncle Mike read his book.

Jamming with Matt and Alex.

And showing Matt a new chord.

Friday, February 26, 2010


Our oldest grandson lives with us. That makes the passing of time as indicated by his birthdays more vivid. He just turned seventeen. I hadn’t thought about it like this before, but there is something different about seventeen. Sixteen is exactly the midpoint of the teen years – neither a child nor an adult. But seventeen puts him in the last half of teendom. It’s like at seventeen he is no longer half-child, he is more half-man. It could be a sad time. A time to grieve over the loss of the bright eyed, ever-learning little kid he used to be. And there is a bit of that in it for me. But there is also an excitement at what he is becoming. I can still see the bright eyes, and the endless desire to learn in the man he is becoming. He will be an incredible addition to the adult world in a few years and maybe adulthood won’t be so stuffy any more.

The little Haitian girl who is staying with us just turned three. Three is an amazing age. Always learning; always excited. Excited about things like Granny coming home, about ice cream and bananas. I like to preface her name with the word “Princess” and to say that she is to be the first female president of Haiti – the one who solidifies their place as an equal partner in the world’s commerce.

And I just turned sixty-eight. Sixty-eight was hard for me. I have always enjoyed birthdays, and the party was great this time. But sixty-eight is closer to seventy than it is even to sixty-five. Suddenly I felt old. And there is so much left to do. I don’t have my PhD, yet. I haven’t figured out how to really help the Haitian people on a very large scale. I haven’t published half the books floating around in my head or really found out how best to market the ones I have published.

Time is a strange thing. Sometimes it moves so fast we can’t even see it flying by. At other times it crawls so slowly we cannot tell it is moving.

The Preacher who wrote Ecclesiastes said “Do not say, ‘Why is it that the former days were better than these?’ For it is not from wisdom that you ask about this.” (7:10)

“Consider the work of God. For who is able to straighten what He has bent? In the day of prosperity be happy, but in the day of adversity consider-- God has made the one as well as the other,” (7:13-14)

And finally (12:14): “The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.”

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Magalie's New Face

Here are a couple of pictures of Magalie since her eyes were straightened. Her eyes are still a little bloodshot from the surgery, but that will fade.
Note the strategic product placement in the second picture. We get a nickle every time one of you drinks a coke within thirty minutes after viewing this picture.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Back to straighten the eyes

Magalie went back to surgery last Wednesday February 17 for outpatient surgery to make her eyes point in the same direction.

Listening to Grandpa's heart.

Getting her heart checked.

Doped up and headed to surgery.

Minnesota winter.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Latest from Roberta

This comes to us from Jesse Robertson in Henderson, TN, by way of Facebook.

"Today Team 4 is on its way to Port au Prince. Roberta reports that she has already distributed about 50,000 lbs of food, and has several more tons at her house waiting to be packaged for families. The security walls have been closed to a height of about six feet, and gates have been installed at the group house. The church is receiving compliments on its show of Christian generosity, and worship is standing room only. For the next few weeks we will focus on keeping some helpers on hand to facilitate food distribution."

Monday, February 8, 2010

Magalie has a cold

Magalie has been alternating between feeling okay and feeling pretty miserable. Charlene has been in touch with her primary care doc at Mayo about it. Right now we are in a "wait and see" mode. Her surgrey is not until Wednesday of next week, so hopefully the cold will be cleared up by then. Here she is looking at the most recent snowfall. Check out the flamingo on the lower right, asking to be let in.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Book Review

Prostitutes, Tax Collectors, and You Prostitutes, Tax Collectors, and You by David May

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
An important book. It will encourage all Christians to take a new look at the mission of the church and at his or her role in it. A quote: "You see, that is what church leadership should be about - people of integrity doing what the church needs to do, and inviting the church to join them. Isn't that what Jesus did?"

View all my reviews >>

Dead To My Flesh: When Michael May hits you hard

A great testimony to Michael. Check it out by clicking here:

Dead To My Flesh: When Michael May hits you hard