Archives for May 2011


Memorial Weekend has me remembering. I’m thinking of Don’s mom as we lost her earlier this year, but I’m also remembering my Grandpa and Grandma Hoy. They are pictured above with my sister Debbie, me (with my back to camera), and also my dad’s bird dog, Cindy.

So many great memories of them and their farm. Kittens, like Debbie and Grandpa are holding, always seemed to be in ready supply, along with fun and adventure. Below is a deeper glimpse into the life of my Grandpa Hoy. Hope you enjoy!

Thanks, Grandpa

Thanks, Grandpa, for all the memories.
I love to remember
The times we had.
To have a grandpa who had a farm,
What could be better?
All the time you spent with us
Playing hide and seek
Climbing the hay loft
Telling us stories under the trees
And falling asleep right in the middle.
“I’ll give you a quarter if you walk that fence!”
You would say.
Sometimes we would be scared
To do it,
But then you would do it yourself,
And we loved it.
As we grew older
You always took an interest
In the things we were doing.
You were proud and always
Supported us in our new ventures.
When we married,
You made it natural and easy
For our husbands
To call you “Grandpa”.
What a good feeling.
And, Grandpa,
You were a man of God.
You could hardly pray without a few tears
While thinking about
Your Jesus.
What a heritage you have given us.
Grandpa, the memories are so precious,
Thanks for your special

–written in memory of my grandpa, Daniel A. Hoy

“I thank my God every time I remember you.” Philippians 1:3

*Family photo taken by my dad or mom

Heavy Heart for Joplin

Joplin holds a special place in the hearts of our family. Less than a year ago, our entire clan descended upon it for Kelli and Jake’s wedding weekend. In fact, my sister Debbie took the photo above at that time. Little did we know that a massive tornado would devastate a third of the city within the year. The horror and heartache that has taken place there this week truly goes beyond words.

We have ties to this special town. Kelli went to college in Joplin and worked and lived there for several years. (Of course, this means we hung out there a lot as well.) She met Jake in Joplin, as well as some of her best girlfriends. Joplin is where Jake proposed. Joplin is where they got married. They both have friends and memories there. They love this town.

My sisters and I grew up less than thirty minutes from Joplin. It was the place to go for shopping and special dates. Don and I even spent our one-night honeymoon there when we got married as poor college students. We’ve lived within 75 miles of it ever since. It’s a piece of our personal history.

Having lived in the region so long, we can’t help but know folks who live there or who have loved ones living there. Our hearts — and the hearts of many — are heavy for Joplin. We hurt for the people who have lost their homes and possessions, their churches, their businesses, their schools. And even more tragic than all of that, we hurt for those who have lost their loved ones.

Our hearts and our prayers are with you, Joplin. May God grant you help, healing, and hope.

“The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18

*Do you have a special memory of Joplin you’d like to share in the comments? Or perhaps a prayer for the people there? Let’s show our support any way we can…

The Savior’s Prayer for Unity


“…Christ Jesus, who died — more than that, who was raised to life — is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.” Romans 8:34

Can you believe it? The One who conquered death is right next to the Father interceding for us. That’s a pretty incredible thought, isn’t it? As incredible as it is, sometimes we forget that Jesus is praying for us. Think about it a moment. Picture it in your mind’s eye. Do you wonder what He’s saying? Would you like to hear His words?

One of the prayers Jesus prayed for all believers is recorded in John 17:20-23. It was the night before He was crucified, and we were on His mind. Jesus said:

“My prayer is not for [the disciples] alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”

Do you think Jesus might still be praying this prayer today? Let’s join Him and pray for unity among believers — in our own circles and around the world. May we be brought to complete unity!

“Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:3

*Flickr photo by tipiro, Creative Commons License

Family Days

Like many of you, we’ve got lots of family gatherings going on this month. Rather than a regular post, thought I’d give you a peek at some of our family fun from this weekend (Don’s birthday weekend). And since we’ll continue to be on the run with family graduations this next week, I’ll forgo a midweek post and see you again next week.

Hope you enjoy the pics — we certainly enjoyed our time together! As you can see above, we started with games, of course, the evening Kristin and Shawn arrived :)

Always love hanging out with my girl! :)

Mom and Dad and my sister Carolyn and her boys, Cody and Gavin, got to join us for part of the weekend, too. Here we are at El Pueblito with the birthday boy at the center of things :)

I made sure to let our server know it was Don’s birthday. Sure enough they made a spectacle of him :)

Got in a little Apples to Apples before everyone had to leave. Cody pulled out the win :)

Good times with people we love — can’t get much better than that. I wish the same for you and your family. See you next week!

“…you have such a place in our hearts that we would live or die with you.” 2 Corinthians 7:3b

Comeback Kids

Yay! Our strawberry patch has continued its comeback! Last spring, after a year of almost being completely wiped out, we had a few strawberry plants push through the sod and proudly produce a few berries for us (there would have been more if it hadn’t been for neighborhood thieves. And now I’m happy to report that this spring the patch is back—and even stronger than last year. I think we’ve got a comeback kid on our hands!

Oh, there are still plenty of gaps between plants. But more plants have made an appearance this year, and one area has even filled out rather nicely. We had good rain not long ago, but as you can see, we’re in need of more now. I have high hopes, though, of enjoying a few more fresh strawberries this year and would love to be able to make some jam for my kids—but that might be pushing it for my little comeback patch, given the fact that the birds love its berries, too. Darn birds! :)

You can bet I will be cheering for my strawberry patch, though. Everyone cheers for a comeback kid, right? It’s almost impossible not to. Who’s not inspired to see someone rise from the ashes of defeat or disaster and try to get back in the game? It takes real courage, fresh hope, and gritty determination to raise your head once you’ve been knocked flat.

Let’s ask ourselves if there’s anyone we know who needs someone in their corner right now, someone cheering them on as they try to make a comeback. Just as I might try to chase a few birds away from my strawberry patch or give it some much needed water, let’s offer our comforting presence and words of encouragement to the comeback kids in our lives as they raise their heads and hearts and try to gain their footing again.

And most importantly, let’s lift these comeback kids to the Father in prayer. He’s the One who can make their victories sure. And He wants to be in their corners, too.

“But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

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*My photo