Sunday, July 31, 2011

Mini Road Trip - Allaso Ranch

So, Zachary and I made our 4th annual trek to Allaso Ranch this afternoon.  For those of you reading that don't really know me.....I HATE road trips!  Anything past about 45 minutes and I am grumbling under my breath.  I have to admit though...this drive is growing on me.  Not taking our 15 minute stop at the train tracks in Terrell into consideration, the trip took about and hour and 45 minutes.  The drive has become familiar and I am thrilled with the goodness that is waiting for Zachary on the other I have decided that I will no longer dread the drive.  Despite the unbearable heat, AR is a wonderful place (even in August) and I feel extremely fortunate that Zachary's father and I are able to send him each summer.  Check out the link above and see the "awesomeness" that is Allaso Ranch for yourself.  Learning about God in luxury accomodations.  They never had summer camp like this when I was a kid!!!!  Zachary slept for more than half of the trip...

Don't even ask how I snapped this while driving.
but apparently that wasn't quite long enough, as he woke up in a bit of a foul mood 5 minutes from camp.  He humored me with another pic...although he did tell me to "take it quick" in case any of his cabin mates might be around.

Mom...why are you taking pictures now???
After we checked in we headed in to find his table were he would find out who would be in his cabin as well as who his counselor would be.  Much to his surpise (not to mention my ELATION!!!!), we saw a familiar face.  John Mark was Zachary's small group leader at church in 3rd grade and was his counselor 2 summers ago at Allaso - Zach is not much for showing excitement, but I knew this was a good thing.  That smile actually looks genuine!

John Mark and Zachary at check in.

So, to my sweet little (ok, maybe not so little) man....I hope that you have an incredible week at camp!  Although, I am supposed to enjoy my week of quiet, by tomorrow afternoon I will be ready for you to be home.  I love  you!!!!

Hope you all had a great weekend...night!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Plant Strong, Back to Blogging and Where Has the Summer Gone?

Things have changed in my world since my last post - yes, I know, literally months ago.  I have adopted a vegetarian lifestyle and am striving for vegan.  If only I hated cheese!!!  Much to my surprise, the abscence of meat has not been difficult at all for me so far.  In all honestly, I have never been a huge meat eater, but I did eat quite a bit of chicken and oh, how I loved my burgers.  After reading Jonathan Safran Foer's Eating Animals, I decided that I could not continue, in good conscience, to consume animals.   I think in the back of my mind I thought I knew how meat, fish and poultry ended up in our grocery stores but it was easier to simply not think about it.  After reading and viewing the reality  of what more than 90% of the animals that we are consuming are going through, the choice was not at all difficult to make.  In fact, for me it was a complete no-brainer.  When I would talk to people about what I was learning they would say...."I don't want to know....I love meat way too much".  This is proof positive that ignorance truly is bliss.  Ignorance of the facts does not make the atrocities any less real! 

Although this lifestyle definitely started out as a result of my compassion for animals, I am learning so much more.  Back in May, my mom and I went to a screening of "Forks Over Knives".  It is film documenting the overwhelming health benefits of adopting a "plant strong" diet.  I have for years been told that my cholesterol and high blood pressure are a result of my family tree.  Just for the record, my parents have neither of the problems, but my grandfather's on both sides did.  I now firmly believe that it is within my power to reverse these problems with food as opposed to medication.  We have been made to believe that when something ails us we should "just take a pill".  How about taking responsibilty for our own health instead of letting the drug companies have all the control???   Time will tell what I can stay tuned for more updates.  If you would like to learn more about adopting a plant strong diet click here for more info.

In other news around my world, Summer is flying by!  In less than a month it will be back to school - how can it be possible that I have a 5th grader??  Zachary is enjoying his time off.  He started out going to the skate park pretty regulary, but with the consecutive weeks of 100 degree plus weather, that has tapered off quite a bit.  He played indoor soccer and that wrapped up last night.  He and my dad went on a rafting trip to the Salmon River in Idaho for a week and I think it was a great trip.  Zach is not much into giving me the details, but I do get snippets every now and then that lead me to believe it was a success.  I will post some pics soon - this one was taken the morning that they were leaving at DFW airport.
July 6, 2011 - Early morning flight to Salt lake City, UT then on to Boise, ID
To round out the summer break he will be going to Allaso Ranch for the fourth consecutive year.  He always has a great time!

It feels good to have blogged again and I will do my best to be more consistent.  I have completed another scrapbook that I would love to share as well so stay tuned.  Hope you had a great weekend!

One more photo....just for fun.  I just realized that I still haven't told the story about how we came to be the owners of this guy.....don't give up on me!

My boys....Zach and Jack