Don't let the difficulties of the present moments overshadow the reality of God's promises. God's promises still stand. And God's promises are stronger than our failures.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Does Anyone Remember?

Last summer my husband and I worked for four months at UMCOR Sager Brown in Baldwin, Louisiana.  This is a Methodist mission where churches from all over America send teams of "weekly missionaries" to work in the kit ministry for a week.  They put together health kits, school kits, baby layettes, cleaning buckets, and birthing kits that are shipped all over the world in times of crisis.  This year, as you can imagine, thousands of cleaning buckets have been delivered to different states who have had devastating floods and tornadoes.

We're back at Sager Brown working, this summer for just two months.  It takes a bit of planning to get things ready at home to be away for that long but I'm so blessed with people that help that it really becomes almost too easy!  Our daughter is house sitting for us - she thinks it's a cush job because we live on a lake but trust me the watering is a job.  One grandson does the mowing.  And my neighbor/best friend checks the mail, takes the trash can to the street, checks the house (if daughter has to be away) and generally oversees everything at home.  Without her help we couldn't do the job we're doing - she is God-sent for sure.

There is a residence hall here that's just like the old time college dormitory with bathrooms in the hall and three beds (at least!) in each room.  Jerry and I have a two room apartment there and I am the Hostess (dorm mother!) while he works out in the heat in the community building wheelchair ramps, painting houses, rebuilding "soft" floors, etc.

My job is easy...but I thought I'd tell you a little about it because I won't be posting as often as I like and this are my excuses.  :)  The internet connection here is as slow as Christmas so I sure won't be uploading a lot of pictures.  :(

I get up at 5:30 during the week and walk for 35 minutes.  That's about a mile and a half and even though I'd like to do a little more, that early in the morning it's all I have time for.  And it's too doggone hot to walk later in the day.  We eat all our meals during the week in the cafeteria so I shower and dress and meet everyone for breakfast at 7:30.  I spend the morning in my office doing paperwork...I make name tags and door tags and do room assignments...that kind of thing.  I open our gift shop from 11:30 until 12:00 and again from 3:30 until 4:30.  Lunch is at noon and supper at 5:30.  If I have any work left from the morning I work on it in the afternoon but if not then I hang out at or near my office in case someone needs me and I read a book (or blogs) or do a little stitching.  It's pretty quiet during the day because everyone is working but in the evening people are back in the dorm so it's a little busier.  Everyone is supposed to be in their rooms by 10:00 when we lock the doors; lights out at 11:00.  I confess that I'm so tired I usually go to bed about 9:00 and Jerry does the locking up.  He doesn't mind sleeping in his recliner for a while, then getting up to lock up before he comes to bed.

This year we're only staying two months - June and July.  And I know it will be hard to believe but I didn't even bring my sewing machine!  I did bring a big basket of hand stitching projects - embroidery, applique and a quilt top to hand quilt.  I probably won't get two of them done but at least I have a choice of things to work on.  I'm still working on Twas The Night Before Christmas which is a redwork quilt top.  I've sandwiched a jelly roll strip quilt and it's waiting for me to buy the thread to quilt it with.  I'm about halfway through with the Down on the Farm wool applique table runner I posted about earlier.  I traced the twelve blocks to embroider for HocusPocusVille (and three or four other small embroidery pieces) and also brought a couple more small wool piece.  I know, I know...I'm only going to be here two months and you'd think it was going to be a year!  I did bring fewer clothes and shoes than last year.  :)

Saturday a couple of the other women and I are going hunting for a fabric shop we heard about that I didn't find last year.  I'll let you know if we're successful.

Anybody else going fabric shopping this week?

19 comments:

Kathryn D. Duke said...

wow...it sounds like fun!!! but work too...
I think I know what the Christmas red work is and I , too, would like to do that one say!!

Keep us informed...

Needled Mom said...

Have a wonderful summer! I DO remember last year. The trip must take an incredible amount of organization at home.

Michelle said...

You are a blessing. Have a wonderful time!

Linda said...

What a wonderful ministry! I know you'll be blessed for doing this!

Tracy P. said...

Ah, good for you, Marlene! I miss you when your away, but I'm pretty sure you won't stay gone! Enjoy!

Julie Fukuda said...

This is almost where I came in last year, near the end of your stay. How wonderful to have such good coverage back home. Your handwork will have plenty of attention and your maching will celebrate your return.Take care!

Marie said...

It sounds worthwhile and wonderful Marlene. You are so blessed to be able to do this. We would never be able to leave our home for that long. We have nobody to watch it and squatters would move in I am sure!! I hope you find that quilt shop. I can't wait to see what you do! xxoo

Carol said...

Sounds like a great time you have, Marlene! I'm glad you are able to do it, having the help at home to take care of things in your extended absence.

Wow, you sure did go prepared with a lot of projects! I'm a one-at-a-time needleworker, preferring to finish one project before moving on to the next.

Hope you found that quilt shop!

Carol (NJ)

Salem Stitcher said...

Y'all are doing a wonderful thing! And your job may sound easy but there seems to be a lot for you to take care of every day.

Arkansas Patti said...

How neat that you are doing it again this year. I enjoyed your last years account.
Do hope hubby is careful in this unusual heat.
So they have a curfew? Like you, I would have a hard time staying up late enough to break it.
Enjoy.

Linda said...

Good on you and Jerry for taking on such a wonderful volunteer effort! It's people like you who make the world a much better place. Hope you feel up to some stitching and sewing; it does help one's disposition, if nothing else! Enjoy yourself.

Gmama Jane said...

I didn't know you last year because I had just begun blogging and being new to the format, I had not found Stash Manicure. SM is where we connected and the rest is history. I'm looking forward to hearing about your mission work these next 2 months and pictures will come from my mind since you do such a good job of describing! You will be one busy lady and Oh so blessed! Like you, I like having a choice of stitching projects, that's my ADD kicking in I suppose.
Blessings my friend,
Jane

Amy said...

I bet they're so excited to have you back! You bring blessings to everyone you come in contact with!!!

Carrie P. said...

the Lord be with you as you do a work. I am sure it is very hot down there at this time.
The heat itself will wear you out. Maybe you will get some hand work done.
I just bought some "Prince Charming" fabric today for a small quilt.

Teresa said...

How nice that you and your husband could go back. I really want to do something like that when we are retired.

I'll be watching for your posts and hearing all about your adventures.

Madame Samm said...

still in all my heavens believe no sewing machine for 2 months...Ok, you may as well take away my coffee...( like that is ever going to happen)
sew even though you are not HERE, you are somewhere, where we can touch base..pics or no pics...
toodles

Lori said...

I am so behind on my blog reading with our Alabama trip and then the wedding, that I just now read this. SO glad you're back and serving in Louisiana again. Enjoy yourself and thank you for what you do! God Bless!

Adrienne said...

Oh, yes, I DO remember! And I think of it often. I'm glad you could go back this year. It sounds like your job is just right for you. I know you're an inspiration and encouragement to everyone who lives in your dorm. What a neat dorm mother to have!
~Adrienne~

Anonymous said...

My friend (Rememberances Of An Arkansas Stamper) shared your Sager-Brown post with me. I have been priviledged to serve at SB for three summers with my sister's group from Mabelvale Methodist Church. I enjoyed it so much and could pack health, school, and bedding kits in my sleep. We are scheduled for October this year if health permits. God Bless you in your mission work. mchelen1@hotmail.com