Monday, April 18, 2011

A long time in coming

This post has been a long time in coming. You have heard in the Updates how we have fared, but here are some pictures to prove what we have done. Firstly we had a few birthdays. Fist Rebekkah on the 7th February...Georgia now our 6 years old...And our Yank... she is two now... how time flies...These two are up to their old tricks .... again... in Dad's jacket...

We went to the Creation Museum about a monht ago. It was really great. A great time for both the kids and the adults...
Thay also had a petting zoo there, complete with a camel...
The older kids are getting into dress-up making their own clothes. Here is 'Juliette Big Foot' the Indian.You shoot me... I'll shoot you....
We also got our dairy farm fix. We met some people in a church Erik preached at. 4000 cows all on one farm. Milking 23 hours a day. 4 truckloads of milk leave the farm every day. Impressive, but not a place you would want to work on - brings a new meaning to factory farming.

The milking 'parlor' looks more like the entrance to a church or something. All it needs is a cross on the top of the building. All very clean, up-to-date and modern.

That's it for another round of photo's. Hopefully we will post a few more before we leave, but we will have to see how we go.

Blessings. Stoltes USA.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Some lingering snow and a 'field trip.'

The last of the snow from the blizzard was great for making snowmen. Here is our creation, which turned a few heads in cars coming down the street.The last time we were in Kalamazoo for a preaching assignment, Gina was speaking to a farmers wife. She invited us around some time. So we took her up on her offer. This is a huge place. All owned by the one man and wife. He started off with 10 cows and now is milking 4,000 at this place, with some more in other places.
Just in case you think this is the enterance of a motel or church building, this is the 'milking palour.'

72 bale rotary, for 4,000 cows. 24/7 milking, with an hour or 2 here and there for cleaning. It turns out they are a few days behind in their schedule. Standing there watching them work, you can see, why. Things don't go too fast here!!! Mind you, if I was doing that all day, I'm not too sure how fast I would be either...Oh, yes, silage. You'd need a pretty bad winter to run out with this lot...

The loaded up trailer is for his other 'smaller farm.' He has his own trucking company, and has 4-5 loads of milk go out every day, to South Carolina somewhere, probably 12-15 hours drive.
This is all on a slightly different scale to what we are used to...

And we have had two birthdays in the past month. Georgia on the 9th March...

...and Rebekkah on the 7th February

She got this cake from our 'adopted grandparents.'

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Pella and some snow

We went to Pella, Iowa, a number of weeks ago. Erik had to preach there and we thought we would take the opportunity to do some sight seeing. Pella is a historical town, settled by the Dutch and for tourist reasons is very good at keeping it heritage to the fore. However, nothing was open. It is the middle of winter, temperatures below zero and lots of snow around. But here are some pictures anyway.
As you can see they keep up the Dutch shop fronts. This is on all the businesses in the town square.

Since we couldn't go into any touristy places, we went to our Motel (the church put us up for 2 nights) and we went swimming instead. I think the kids enjoyed it more than the town itself.
So the talked up blizzard came and went. In the Update we belittled it, but even though it wasn't as big as the "blizzard of 1967," it was pretty bad. Lots and lots of snow and huge drifts. Most businesses were closed for at least a day and some for a couple of days.Our neighbour was snowed in by a drift.
The seminary didn't fare too badly. Nothing a snow plough can't take care of.So the next day was clean up.Pity the post man. He has to keep getting out of his car to put in the mail. Mind you, he's lucky he doesn't have to dig out the letter boxes.Ah, yes! The whole family pitched in to dig us out. Erik is on snow shovelling duties at the Seminary. Some results of a couple hours of work. The Kids don't know what all the fuss is about. This is COOL!!!!! Snow forts, tunnels and snow fights. It's great fun.

So our last snowy winter is proving to be rather exciting. I'm sure we will remember this for years to come.
Blessings to you all. Stoltes.