"The be-all and end-all of life should not be to get rich, but to enrich the world."
– Bertie Charles Forbes
Hello all. Sorry that it's been a couple of weeks without an update, but we've been busy with family visits and such. What an awesome time we had in San Diego!!!!
First, we had a lovely visit with Steve's mom, Connie. We began her visit by taking her to the highest point in San Diego - - Mt. Soledad. This is a memorial dedicated to all the veterans of the San Diego area and it affords you the most spectacular view of the ocean and surrounding La Jolla area. So beautiful! Unfortunately, it was a little foggy so the picture of the ocean isn't as clear as we would have liked, but you get the idea. Our next stop was to the Hotel del Coronado on Coronado Island. This is the place where my beloved Steve proposed to me some 14 years ago. It is the oldest wooden hotel in the United States and an absolutely gorgeous structure and surrounding gardens. This place has such old world charm and really takes you back to the good old days where women wore hats and gloves and men wore suits. They still have an elevator operator -- how cool is that? The woodwork in this building is unbelievable, too. And, because you know I am a huge fan of native flora, we snapped a picture of the most unusual tree - - The Dragon Tree. Isn't it cool. Lastly, Steve snapped a picture of the rocks that we sat on when he proposed. AHHHHHH, ain't that sweet!
Steve, Connie and I took a drive up to the Los Angeles area where Connie's brother, Frank, and his family live. What a nice time we had with them. It was fun sitting around and listening to stories of Frank's adventures in the war (he was a fighter pilot in Vietnam) and the crazy stunts he would pull with his planes. I especially enjoyed hearing the story of how he and Aunt Kiki met and fell in love. These two have been married 60 years and you can see the love between them is just as strong as it was when they first met - - they made cute faces at each other when telling us the story of their courtship and it just melted my heart. I also got to meet two of Steve's cousins - - Ann and Denise. They are two of Frank and Kiki's 8 children. One other daughter, Ann, and her husband, Pepper, and three boys had dinner with us one night. What a lovely family they are. Josh is a soccer player like our son Terry and is being reviewed by college coaches right now. I know that drill and it is stressful, so GOOD LUCK JOSH!!!!
We did some other things with Connie besides family stuff. We visited The Creation Museum here in Santee, California. What an awesome museum that was. It was dedicated to the 6 days of creation and went day-by-day in detail. http://creationsd.org/ The museum highlights the wonder of our universe and our planet earth, and even discusses the complexity of the cells of the human body. It all speaks to the notion that who we are and where we live is most definitely the result of what scientists are terming "intelligent design" and could not possibly be evolution. One really just needs to study the human body to grasp that fully. What an awesome God we have, don't you think?
Our last bit of fun with Connie was attending Easter service at David Jeremiah's church in El Cajon, CA. For those of you who don't know, David Jeremiah has been a teacher of the Bible for almost 50 years. He has pastored Shadow Mountain Community Church for most of that time and also has television and radio ministries. The Easter service was so beautiful and the song selection was magnificent. The entire service gave me chills. The best part of that, however, was when Connie met David Jeremiah. She was just thrilled.
Later that day, we gathered at Stevie and Aime's house and enjoyed Easter dinner with them, Connie, Aime's cousin Nick and his wife Ashley, Aime's friends - - Ashley and Morgan, but most especially our grandson Jeremiah!!! WOOOO HOOOO! He flew in late the night before so Easter morning was the first time we had seen him and man, has he grown! He is about 6 inches taller than when we were home in October. Aime did a lovely job putting Easter dinner together and it was nice to have so much family around us for this holiday. It was like being home, only warmer!!!
Connie left the Monday after Easter and we spent the next few days with Jeremiah. What a joy it was to spend time with this fine young man. He turned 16 while staying with us so we took everyone out to Slader's 50/50 for burgers. The 50/50 part of the name is for the hamburger patty that is 50% beef and 50% bacon. Yes. It tastes a good as it sounds. I cannot believe how quickly time flies. It seems just a short time ago he was calling me "Dramma Lauren".
Aime had to work and I had a paper to write, so the boys (Steve, Stevie and Jeremiah) got to go snorkeling by themselves and had an awesome time together. Listening to them stories afterwards was a hoot, but what a treat for the three generations of Anderson men to spend some alone time together and bond. They also went kayaking in the La Jolla cove one day and Aime fell in the water! She was not pleased but that also made for great storytelling later.
Our last adventure with Jeremiah was a visit to the San Diego Safari Park. What an awesome zoo that is. It is not the San Diego Zoo, although the two are affiliated. I believe they are phasing out the zoo (which is closer to downtown San Diego) and expanded their land holdings out in Escondido with this Safari Park. HOLY COW! It is an all day thing, for sure, and absolutely beautifully done. Jeremiah was the official photographer on this trip and I think he did a fine job. We had a great time and saw the brand new baby rhinoceros and baby elephant. Aren't they cute?
So, now all the family has gone back home and we are, once again, alone. We so enjoyed our time with family and already miss them terribly. The following Monday we headed up to Yosemite National Park, but had a bit of an adventure on the way. God really watches out for us because somewhere along Highway 57 we lost the right rear wheel on our trailer. Now when I say wheel, I am not just talking about the tire - - it was the entire stinking wheel. Apparently the things that hold the wheel on the hub all sheared off in the process of disengaging from the trailer. Thankfully, we had two angels who came to our rescue. The first was the man who drove up next to us on the highway to tell us that the wheel had come off. We had no idea and felt nothing so thankfully he let us know.
Secondly, once we got off the highway and into a Lowe's parking lot, a very nice man (and fellow camper) took Steve around to various auto parts and camper supply places to find a new hub and lug nuts. They were successful and we were back on the road with only 4 hours lost. If that angel hadn't come to our rescue, we most likely would have been stuck in town for a day or so waiting for parts. In the process of shopping for parts, Steve and our angel traveled back over the area of the highway where we lost the tire because we were concerned that when it came dislodged, that it may have hurt someone or damaged something along the side of the road. Thankfully, that was not the case as that stretch of the highway is bordered by ravine and empty space. Thank You Lord!!!!
So, now we are in Yosemite. A day late but we made it. Steve posted some initial pictures on his Facebook page so check those out. Watch for our blog next week as am absolutely certain it will contain pictures that will take your breath away!
Until then, we love and miss you all so much. Time with family is so precious for us but it always makes us sad when it comes to a close. Like the quote above says - - enriching the world should be our goal and to us, family is one of the things that does that for us. Precious people, our family.