Wednesday, December 30, 2015

New hens for the new year

We have 4 new chickens. They are Brahmas, and part Dresner. They are 6 months old so we can trust they are really girls. And God willing, they will start laying eggs in March. We went last night to pick them up, and they slept well with the other chickens. We saw a little hen pecking today. Our garden is pretty big, so the two older hens, and the 4 new hens just didn't hang out together. But by the end of the day they were mostly together. But Nicole and I had to catch the new hens and put them in the coop. But Jürgen built a new perch for the new chickens. So I think we are good! Hopefully the pecking order will be figured out in a few days, and we will have one happy flock.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

A bird in the hand or two must go

I’ve had a few people ask me what I would do with my chickens when they got old. Could I kill them? They are meat birds after all. This morning the roosters started to crow one hour early at 6am. I ran outside with just my jacket over my PJ’s. I grabbed both of the roosters (one in each hand). Because it was cold, I came back into the house and sat with the birds in the hallway. It was not easy. They are very big birds... And after a half hour I could not do it anymore, so I called for Nicole to help me. A half hour later, the alarm clock rang, and Jürgen ran down the stairs to go get the roosters out of their pen before they woke the neighbors. And of course he found us. But the birds started to pant hard. So we decided to put them in the small bathroom. And they crapped all over the floor right away. Thank God they waited to do that. We gave them food and water, and waited until 8:30am to let them out. They crowed their little hearts out, but we hope it was not so loud. The windows are new with 3x glass. Jürgen went outside, and said the noise was very small. And I had to scrub the bathroom with bleach after the bids were returned to the garden. The farmer will take them back tomorrow. I don’t know if he will keep them or kill them. But as I held them by myself at 6am I thought I could do it. I could kill them with my bare hands…no problem! They have had a good life. They are so beautiful. But I am not going to wake up early every morning to keep them from waking the neighbors. The farmer says he does not have any more hens to replace the ones I lost, and these 2 roosters. I’ll just have to wait.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! The food is ready. We are having enchiladas, fajitas, tamales, beans, rice, salad, and fresh guacamole. My family brought the ingredients over from America this summer. It’s been waiting for this special day! It smells so good! What makes Christmas special for you? Stay safe, and be blessed. God is good all the time, but we pray you know his peace and love today.

Bye, Bye Birdies

We started out with 6 Brahma chickens. Two died from red mites. Now 2 are roosters and they both just started to crow (December 24th). We are emailing the farmer who sold us the birds. We cannot keep them because they crow. It is so sad. They are so beautiful! But maybe he will trade us the roosters for more hens. After all, it is eggs we want! But I don't know if anything can be done for a few days. It is Christmas! Juergen will go apologize to the neighbors and beg for understanding. We are working on it.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Saturday, December 12, 2015

a little hope

We delivered our shoe box Christmas gifts tonight to 2 refugee camps (Muehlhausen and Wiesloch). The people were really friendly and helpful. We tried to only give people gifts at their door. This was especially important in the bigger camp of Wiesloch. The security guards went with us. They even gave us a list of who was in each room. It took us a long time to go door to door. We went with Juergen and I, (our sons) Philip and Thomas, and my good friend Kerstin and one of her sons. And I know most of these refugee families will not be allowed to stay in Germany. They were all from Eastern European countries. But some of them were very poor. One family had 7 daughters, ages 15 to 2 years old. Their skin was dry and gray. Their hair was thin and falling out. They were malnourished. And I know if I could not feed my children, I would migrate too. I felt compassion for them, and sadness because I know they have little hope of staying in Germany. And they have little hope when they are sent back home. And I was grateful to offer them at least some joy for today. We could bless them in the name of the Lord. And everyone who received a shoe box gift was grateful. There are 1200 shoe box Christmas gifts being handed out in the next two weeks in the Heidelberg Germany area. Each one of these gifts have been donated by families in the area. They are going to children ages 0-18.

Thursday, December 03, 2015

a gift from them

One of the things Juergen had to do with his brother and sisters was to clean out the room of their father. He was living in an assisted living home. He did not have many things anymore. But he had a coffee pot from his 25th wedding Anniversary. And everyone said it should go to Jürgen and I. I'm not really sure Jürgen was even aware it was a silberhochzeit kaffeekanne. He just knew it was fancy. And he gave it to me. And I cried. It was like receiving a gift for my 25th wedding anniversary from the two of them.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

a long trip

Juergen and I both feel a little dazed today. We drove to Northern Germany in a storm to get to Juergens dad's funeral. We drove in separate cars because Jessica would not stay for all the family stuff after the funeral. It took me 6 hours to get there, and 7 hours to get home. The wind was very strong, the rain was pouring and there were many accidents. But I'm glad we could be there. There were so many people. And I guess that surprised me because so many of his friends and family have already died or are too ill to go out. And I prayed Juergen would hear stories about his parents that he could carry in his heart. And he did hear so many stories. And I drive with Nicole. And for me this was not a waste of time. She will most likely be moving away next fall. So these hours are really precious to me. And Jessica was very well behaved on the trip. And she really understood she was saying goodbye. She was sad...and so are all of us.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Ted Cruz at AFP Road to Reform

I would never vote for Trump. He is too rude. I do not think I could vote for Rubio because he is not experienced enough. But now I#m looking at Ted Cruz. I don't know anything about him, but he looks like he may have a chance.

dark cloths

The ground is covered with a heavy frost outside. I boiled water to put in the water container of my chickens. They waited for me to give them extra food today. They need it because of the cold. And I will not be leading the prayer group I usually lead on Fridays. Instead I need to shop for cloths for my kids to wear to their Opas funeral. The cold dark weather seems to mimic my mood. I am really sad. I’m making a slide show, and buying cloths, and it all seems real again. And the feelings of loss and gratitude are with me again. I seem to keep busy, and push these feelings aside. But they are with me and I guess that is just part of being human. We feel love, and we feel loss. But we also know hope, and the strongest emotion I feel at the moment is gratitude. I am thankful for knowing such an amazing, good man like Richard Heymann. I thank God for the life that he has lead.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

He was a great man

Thank you for your prayers. Juergen was stuck in traffic and it took him 7 hours to arrive at his dads. He got there at 10pm and his father died at 11pm. He died peacefully. Juergen was very grateful to be there to thank him and pray for him. Richard was one of the best persons I have ever known. I am so grateful for his life and the gift he was to all of us. He loved Jesus and I have total peace about where he has gone. And I know I will see him again. Jürgen’s dad was a very special person. He was raised on a very large farm near the border of Holland. One of his brothers died in a farming accident, his mother died early from sickness, and his father was killed by the Nazis after he stood up at a town meeting and questioned them. So his life was not easy. He was forced to serve in the German army at the end of WW2. He was only 17 years old. He was sent to Holland. Once they were walking on a road when the road was bombed by the British. Everyone on the high side of the road died, everyone on the low side lived. He loved to study languages. When I first met him he was learning Russian and Swedish. I’m terrible at languages. But Nicole studies languages for the fun of it, just like her Opa. And today I remember so many little things. Like they never eat out much. But now and then Richard and I would sit in a café and drink a coffee. That was a real big deal to him. He taught Juergen how to use tools. So Juergen is very good at fixing things around the house. He was full of wisdom and grace. So many people in his generation were so bitter from the war, but Richard became a Christian shortly after Juergen did in 1973. And God really changed him. He was kind and generous and wise. He loved to learn. He took good care of his family. He always worried that Juergen took care of things like having enough money for retirement. He was responsible. He loved my cooking. He learned to help with the dishes. He liked to watch the news at the same time every night. He used a big cloth napkin that he keep near the place he sat at the table. And he read the new paper, and would cut out articles he thought were interesting. He would send us newspaper articles in the mail. I looked at our phone list today, and it has the phone number of Juergens parents. But they are both gone. It was hard for me to call my own Mom and dad to tell them. I still have them both, but Juergen has lost both of his parents. But at least I am comforted that they could be together in heaven. He was ready to go home. And I will really miss him. But I’m so grateful he did not have to suffer.

Friday, November 20, 2015

saying goodbye

Please pray for my husband Juergen. He is driving to North Germany to be with his father. We do not think his dad Richard will live much longer now. And the weather is not good. I am a little nervous about the trip. But Juergen will be with his brother and sisters. And we know Richard loves God and will be going home.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

fear God

Yesterday Jürgen and I went to breakfast in Heidelberg. As we drove past the fields that are near Patrick Henry Village (a camp that now houses 6000 refugees) we saw dozens of people walking to Heidelberg. It is a very long walk. And it made me think of the miles they have walked over the past months. The weather was nice, but it is supposed to snow this weekend. I guess I can understand the fear I hear in the US press. But you should really understand the people who planned the Paris attacks were not refugees. They have lived in Europe for a while. And there are angry and disenfranchised people in America. You are not safe just because you close the door on people, who for the most part are fleeing war. I do not know if allowing 1 ½ million Syrian refugees is a great idea for Germany. I know this is a complex issue in the short and long term. I pray for our leaders. But I hope my Christian brothers and sisters would at the very least express some compassion and understanding. If you do not want refugees for security reasons, I get it. But pray for a resolution for those fleeing from war. I feel the same about the children fleeing the drug wars in South and Central America. Please have some compassion. You are afraid you may get hurt…but God will judge you. Perhaps you should fear God more then you fear ISIS.

Monday, November 16, 2015

a prayer for peace

Sarah came home from school just now, anxious to tell me what happened. The entire school flooded the hallways at noon to pray for an entire minute for the victims of the terrorist attack in Paris. And the kids were talking to each other afterwards. And she told me about how some mean men had suicide vests. And I told her I was proud of her for praying. I remained calm on the outside as she tried to tell me what she had learned today. Sarah is off doing her homework. I am shaken and crying. I wish my 12 year old did not have to know there was such a thing as a suicide vest. I wish I was not sure we will see World War 3. I wish my sons were 6 years old, and not 18. But God has not given us a spirit of fear. And I am moved that millions of people all over Europe stopped and prayed. I pray we all know the comfort of the Holy Spirit. I pray God gives our leaders wisdom.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Trailer (HD) (English & French Subtitles)

Juergen just got our tickets to see it in English! I am looking forward to it!

God has not given us a spirit of fear

Sometimes I think the media is working with ISIS to stir up fear and anger in the population. There is a tragic reality that ISIS fighters could be entering Europe with the refugee population. But will we punish the entire refugee population (traumatized hurting families) because of a hand full of cowards? And where was America when the 2 million Iraqi Christians were being forced from their homes, many being tortured and killed? Why did we stand back and do nothing? Even now, why do we allow millions of Syrians to be displaced by their own government and ISIS, but we say no...They cannot come here! I remember reading that ship loads of Jews tried to flee Germany during WW2 and they were turned away by the British government. And I shook my head in sadness and unbelief. But now I read the posts of Christian friends on Facebook who are advocating putting up walls, and reposting the most awful and mean spirited propaganda condemning the entire Syrian refugee population. ISIS has already won. They want us afraid…and they have won! And a friend of mine just told me they are bringing in more security to guard the local refugee camps. Not because of the refugees, but because of the angry Germans that might hurt them. I am so sad! And I am ashamed that I had many of the same fears when the camp was first built 5 mins from my house. But I have tried to learn why they have come. What they have run from. And what I can do to help them. And I pray for the leaders because they need wisdom. It is a mess. But we must be part of the answer, not the ones who are adding to the problems! Instead of hate, we need to show compassion. They are not all terrorists. Most have run away from terrorist and only want safe lives. Jesus said…”31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. 34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ Matthew 25 31:-36

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Christmas movies

We have Amazon Prime. I just started to watch their free Christmas movies. Jessica is so happy because they have Elmo’s Christmas DVD. Oh, and today the coolest thing happened. Jessica loves candles. So at lunch I light two candles for her. And she wants to blow the candles out but has never been able to blow them out. But today my 24 year old daughter learned to blow out candles. So I figure she has earned some wishes!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

birthday cake

Here is the cake I made for my 5 year old god daughter. It was a white cake (store bought) with cream filling and almond frosting, covered with organically grow fairy roses and French lavender. And topped with a princess crown. I tried making roses from butter cream, but failed, so I went with real flowers. I also baked a dark chocolate cake with a berry and lime cordial and real whipped cream. I’m not really a baker so it was a fun challenge. She was thrilled! I got a very big kiss and hug, and who could want more! 5 is such a great age. I’m so happy God has given my friends the gift of 3 amazing kids. Each one is a miracle.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Big birds

Nicole took my camera to Cyprus but she is too busy to take pictures. I would like to take pictures of my garden and my chickens. I put bales of straw in the chicken run to block the wind and keep the birds warmer. One of the birds is sleeping in the straw and not in the house. I started feeding them whole corn. I've read that is very good for them in the winter. And they continue to grow bigger, but we still have no eggs. I'm not 100% sure we got rid of the red mites that killed 2 of the birds. The vet said this is why they have not been laying yet. I'm still not 100% sure they are all girls, but they are not crowing. So I am hopeful I only have girls! It can take giant Brahma chickens up to 2 years to reach their full size. It is like I've got Ostridges with short legs not chickens!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Elephant Orphans... Wisdom of the Wild

need space

They are looking for apartments to house refugee families for up to two years. They need "45 – 50 m2 for one person, 60m2 for 2 people and 15 meters more for each new person. They pay 330 for one person in the apartment, 402 euro for 2 people, 479 euro for 3 people, 556 for 4 people, and 638 euro for 5 people. The heating costs are also covered. If you have a granny flat or basement apartment, that would be ideal. This information is from Sinsheim but I'm sure there are needs in Heidelberg area as well. An SAM wenden, wenn Möglichkeiten bestehen: SAM e.V. Sinsheimer Arbeitsgemeinschaft Migration Andreas Banse Dienstl.: 07261/4070408 Mob.: 0151/20611476 Mail:

Sunday, October 11, 2015

not a good week for our President

My parents live in Oregon. I asked my dad what he thought about President Obamas visit to Oregon this week. He said he didn't like it at all. They preempted his TV program to show news footage of the Presidents plane landing, the president getting ice cream etc... He missed his show. It made me laugh. Not only is President Obama unpopular with gun owners, he has made the fans of Days of our lives mad.

How to Make Chocolate Lace Dessert Cups

Thursday, October 08, 2015

I am often struck by how generous the poor are

An old women sat down in a cafe and the busy waitress came to take her order. How much is this nice a piece of cake, the old women asked? 3 Euros replied the waitress. The old women dug into her pocket and counted out her change. How much is the simplest cake? 2 euros the waitress replied. And she was getting impatient because she had many tables to serve. I will have the simple cake the old women said. And she eat her cake slowly. And then she left the café with the change on the table. She left 2 euros for the cake, and 1 euro for a tip. And when she found the tip, the waitress cried.


Tuesday, October 06, 2015

25 years ago today

25 years ago today, I married Juergen . And it has been/ and is wonderful! I had a meeting today, so Juergen and I went out to breakfast yesterday morning to celebrate. And we went shopping to buy the only thing we could think of we needed, 2 new cookie sheets. Yes, I know you are jealous! But seriously, I have everything I need and nearly everything I want. And my life is so full and wonderful because Juergen is standing next to me all the way! He is by me when it is hard, and when it’s good. And I don't need anything at all because I have him. And now we have new cookie sheets too!

Friday, October 02, 2015

update on Richard

Good news. Jürgen’s dad is a little better today. He is now eating and drinking. He had stopped drinking, so we were afraid this was it. But he is a little more stable today, so maybe we will not lose him just yet. Jürgen will still travel to the North of Germany. I thank you for all your many prayers. It is a great comfort.

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Thank you for your prayers

Jürgen’s Dad just had a stroke. And Jürgen will be traveling to Northern Germany tomorrow. We are not surprised. We have expected this. But still it will be sad for Jürgen to lose his dad. Richard is a strong believer in Jesus. We do not know what will happen, but if it is his time we pray it will be peaceful. Thank you for your prayers. Juergen with his Mom and Dad 25 years ago at out wedding.

Monday, September 28, 2015

in the garden today

I used the rest of our grapes to make juice today. And I'm canning the juice and the apple sauce I made on Saturday. I would love to make more juice and apple sauce if anyone has grapes or apples they want to give me. Nicole has my camera in Cypress or I would take pictures. My garden is very nice at the moment. I have allot of small pumpkins in the vines. I hope it stays warm enough for them to mature. And I am making sauerkraut today from our cabbages. I also planted winter crops (kale spinach, lettuce, kohlrabi) today.

Twice Baked Potatoes -- How to Make Fancy Stuffed Potatoes

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Our big party

We are not as pretty as we once were 25 years ago. Someone asked me what our secret to a happy marriage is. I think we have always been so busy fighting outside battles we never had time to fight each other. We are a good team. And we respect each other. We support each other’s dreams. I know I also got really blessed to marry the best person in the world for me. That has made it very easy. It seems like time went by so fast.I love honor and respect Juergen

. That is not hard to do because he is so wonderful!
I thank my sisters Dianna, and Shelley, my brother Rick, my sister in law Amy, her sister Sue, and my friend well as many friends who helped make the party great.  Thank you Ralf for the photos.  So many people made it really wonderful!  

Monday, September 07, 2015

more pictures

Sorry for the delay

We have had no internet for the past 10 days. Here are a few pictures for MOM and Dad. More to come. We have our last day on the road today.