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May 2012

Below the Rim

Dennis and I wandered to the Grand Canyon Saturday for our first, hopefully of many adventures below the rim. We hiked the Grandview Trail which is a “not maintained” trail east of the National Park. We were unsure; the trail is listed as “difficult” in the national park service website. The website also says the hike back up from the 3000 ft altitude drop will take twice as long. Our fledgling hike was about to begin well equipped with sunscreen, hats, new camelbacks and walking sticks, we began our decent.

The trail was surely rocky

God’s handy work, He put steps in for us. As I’m walking down these stairs, I imagine the thousands of animals who have worn this before us. It is truly fascinating. 

Dennis stayed put while I hiked so you could see the path and distance to the next switch back. 

Of course what goes down must go back up! Wow, wow. I have to say, physically it is easier climbing up than going down. Cardiovascularly it is breath taking going up :-0 By the way, isn’t he cute?

This is just a beautiful shot from the Coconino Saddle which is at mile 1. We met a woman who guides and she told us not to believe the “twice as long going back up” advice from the hiking guide. She said that was for teenagers who cruise fast down the trail. It would be equal amount of time. Because it was our first time we didn’t want to push it, we did not hike the entire 3 miles to the Horseshoe Mesa, we thought we would hike 2 hours down and see how long it took us up. So we dropped in elevation 3000 ft along the path to the Horseshoe Mesa then turned back. Well she was right! It took us just under 2 hours to hike back up. Listen to experience, I guess 😉

God and all His wonder is evident every step of the way.

Psalm 145:4-6 One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts.
 I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty,
And on Your wondrous works.
 Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts,
And I will declare Your greatness.

Awed by His Majesty ~ Susie

 

Promises Promises

April 1986 I sat in the radiology department at St. Mary’s Hospital with Dr. Hartman by my side facing yet another procedure to remove the ill-formed tissue from my uterus. Instead of a baby I had a mass of tissue which gave all indication it was a normal pregnancy until the 20th week of growth.

After the second D & C in one year I was beside myself wondering if I would ever have another baby. I was so happy I had Samantha, my beautiful three-year old daughter. I really thought I would have many children not just one. Life at that time was so full of turmoil and pain, my marriage ended and Samantha and I were a small family just the two of us surrounded by so many who loved us. We had years of ups and downs and heart ache and many victories. I faced the fact that having any more children was probably out of question.

In 1996 Dennis and I married. We discussed, briefly 😉 having another child, at this time Samantha was 12 years old an only child of a single mother.

The beautiful promises of God happen right under our noses as we are pushing through life not even realizing He has delivered. Maybe it wasn’t the way the little girl playing with Barbies fantasized but it is the fulfillment of a promise and dreams that came true.

Number 23:19 “God is not a man, that He should lie,
Nor a son of man, that He should repent.
Has He said, and will He not do?
Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?”

See, On December 7, 1996 I had know idea the plan that was being set before our feet. Sure I believed I was marrying the man of my dreams. The family that God was creating is far greater than I could have ever imagined. On December 7, 1996 I became the step mom/other mom to Brett and Erin Dunning. We became a family of 5.

Brett, Samantha and Erin are all so different and add so much joy to my life. Oh God is so faithful, I love them so much.

All I know is that at age 23 having two miscarriages, an ugly marriage falling apart and a three year old daughter looking to me to forge the way into a scary mixed up world, I had know idea at 48 years old I would be so incredibly blessed with three children, two new wonderful sons to add to the mix and lets not forget about Zoe Girl and Carter.

I can’t say it better than the psalmist Psalm 34:4-10

I sought the Lord, and He heard me,
And delivered me from all my fears.
 They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces were not ashamed.
 This poor man cried out, and the Lord heard him,
And saved him out of all his troubles.
 The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him,
And delivers them.

 Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good;
Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!
 Oh, fear the Lord, you His saints!
There is no want to those who fear Him.
 The young lions lack and suffer hunger;
But those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.

Blessed beyond belief ~ Susie

Emotions gone wild

What a week. Wedding, New Home, Kingman, Grand Rapids, Texas, Tennessee wow.

I have gone quite a while without a picture of my Zoe Girl. Really missing her these days. I feel a skype date needed in Texas. On the Tennessee front; Carter was in his car seat while I was talking to his mom today and as soon as she said, “Josh”. On Que Carter was in the background saying, “Dada!” Oh be still my heart. Fortunately for all of us Samantha and Pete are getting married right around the corner and we all get to spend some much-needed time together.

Samantha and Pete plow through this prenuptial time. The rest of their life is coming up quick and they are full board on. It makes my heart so happy to hear Samantha talk about the commitment and the things they are learning from videos they are watching, premarital counseling with one of our favorite married dynamic duos and experiencing life.

My struggle with being separated from Samantha while planning her wedding is eased by my friends picking up the slack. Micki, Kirsti and Cindy are the epitome of true friendship and unconditional love that God gives.

On the home front, my contractor team (they will now be always mentioned in the plural) The Humphries, Doug and Teri have skillfully supported me through decision making here on my own. They are building one beautiful home, they are artists with a touch of counseling 😉

A lot going on above the ceiling in the master bedroom.

Dennis and I feel we are home. We have settled into a church family. We are both greeting for the services and we are making friends in and around the Kingdom of God here in Kingman, AZ. Oh and I think I mentioned I am playing on the co-ed softball team and for the first time in my life hit the ball past, yes I said past 3rd base!!

Ha, this is the front yard, which faces the Northeast

I am so unbelievably nurtured by our heavenly Father. I am in awe of how mindful He is of me.

Psalm 8:3-5When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers,
The moon and the stars, which You have ordained,
 What is man that You are mindful of him,
And the son of man that You visit him?
 For You have made him a little lower than the angels,
And You have crowned him with glory and honor.

In the palm of His hand ~ Susie