Thursday, January 31, 2008

Morning Sickness & Macaroni n' Cheese

Erin is doing well considering there is a living organism growing inside of her. She is fatigued much more easily than before & getting up at 5:15 to go chase Pre-schoolers around all day doesn't help. She eventually gets better once the day gets going & then deals with uneasiness in the evenings. I have been on cooking duty more these days because it doesn't take much to make her feel uneasy. We are thankful everything is moving along well & her 1st Dr.'s appt. is on Feb. 19th so hopefully we can have a better idea of the due date (probably mid-September).

Her eating habits have changed (eating many more times each day for one) & she has recently wanted cheese more than once per day. Her favorite form of cheese is the traditional Kraft Mac n' Cheese from the box. I love it too so that works out well.

Hopefully as this pregnancy progresses there will be more exciting updates to come!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Wild Game Dinner

Last night we had a great time as over 80 people gathered at our church for our 2nd annual Wild Game Dinner. Jimmy & Lucy Mize (professional bassmaster anglers from our church) provided & cooked all the food. A very special "thank you" to them for all their hard work. They provided a variety of wild game for us to enjoy. We had duck, deer, fish, BEAVER, frog legs, & wild game gumbo. One of the best things I've ever eaten were their "deer rolls." Take tenderized deer steak that has been marinated in italian dressing overnight. Then put half a piece of bacon, a piece of deer meet & a jalapeno slice on top, roll it up, stick a toothpick through it & grill to perfection!
Our guest speaker was Mark Davis from Mt. Ida, AR. He is a well-accomplished professional angler. He was won a Bassmaster Classic, 3 BASS Angler of the Year, & something like 48 Top Ten Finishes. He is a great Christian man who was greatly entertaining. He gave us a powerful message. The gospel was presented. We pray some received Christ & hope to follow up with some prospects.

The icy weather kept some away but a great turnout none the less. This is one of the biggest events our church has hosted in a long time. I can't say thank you enough to all who had a hand in helping with this event from cooking, setting up, cleaning up, & helping collect 70 or more door prizes. As a church we try to reach out & connect with those in our local community. I hope we can do more successful events reaching people with the gospel in the future.

Jimmy & Lucy enjoying the meal they worked hard to prepare.

Mark Davis speaking to the crowd.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Ellison Rose Wallis

They will call her Elli or Elle (however you spell it). She was born early Friday morning on January 11th. She weighed in at 8 lbs. 9 oz. & 20.5 in. Ben & Linzi (Longnecker) Wallis are the proud parents. Congrats to both of them on becoming parents. Ben & Linzi are good friends of ours. Linzi & Erin taught together our 1st year here in Mineral Springs & Linzi & I went to High School together. Linzi was one of Erin's 1st friends here in Arkansas & we have enjoyed their friendship the last couple of years.

Babies are being conceived & born around here all the time lately...maybe it's something in the water! Sorry we don't have a picture of the new baby, but all the excitement adds to our anticipation of becoming parents ourselves.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Fun Family Weekend

We had visitors from Texas this week. Erin's parents drove up to spend the weekend with us since Erin's birthday was Saturday (She's now 25 & a whole quarter of a century old!). It was my sister's birthday(not saying how old, but she's 6 years older than Erin) last Saturday so we all met in Texarkana along with my parents & celebrated at Texas Roadhouse. It was a rare chance to have both sets of our parents together along with my sister & her whole family (we missed Brian & Besty being there but San Antonio was too long of a drive just for a birthday dinner).

It was also a great celebration of the new baby on the way. There was lots of baby talk going on this weekend, which is exciting but also overwhelming for both of us right now. Our church family is excited, in fact we had numerous offers to babysit in case we need some practice. We weren't sure if they really wanted to help us or if they just wanted a free babysitter!

The Lord's blessings are new & fresh everday if we're willing to recognize them. May God continue to bless each of you & thanks for your prayers.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Big News!

Erin & I discovered the pressure cooker of starting a family only increases with time. According to a blood test at the doctor we should be expecting our 1st child at the end of September/beginning of October!

We are both nervous, excited, & thankful. God's timing is always best even though it surprised us & maybe came earlier than expected. We covet your prayers because we know it is very early in the pregnancy, but we trust God's plan & are praying for a healthy child.

I couldn't feel any more blessed to have such a wonderful wife who I know will make a great mother for our children. I guess everyone who told us we needed a car seat to make our new car complete will get the last laugh!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

God's Work in Brazil

I had the privilege of going to Campinas, Brazil in October to do missions work. I have heard a couple of small reports but finally got a report from the pastor of the lead church. It is a small church (about 60-65 in a worship service) in a predominantly Catholic region. Let me share with you the email from Pastor Gomez:

"November was a good month to our church. We had many people that received the Bible coming to the service. We had a couple who received the Bible, come to the church and accepted Jesus as Saviour. They told me that want be baptized soon. We distributed 25,000 Bibles in our city, and every week we have somebody asking more Bibles. We thank very much Dr. Purtle and the churches that helped us giving so many bibles to the people. Because of this work, in January we will have five to be baptized. Tomorrow we will have a special program about Christmas.By now we are beginning studies in some homes, teaching them the Word. In some homes we have six peoples studying the Bible. We ask you to pray for us to do this work each week. I thank you the monthly offering you send to my support. God bless you. Pray for us. Pray God bless our work in this big mission field."

Praise the Lord for His work in Brazil. It's great to know when you plant a seed God is the one who makes it grow. We never know the impact we can have through the smallest of things. Below is a picture of me & Pastor Gomez while I was in Brazil.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Erin & I have been extremely busy the past few weeks & life has finally slowed just a bit. We had a great Christmas with our families in Texarkana & Dallas. Many things have been happening since we've both been off a few days.

After a meaningful Candlelight Christmas Eve Service at our church we had Christmas in our home with my family. The next day we were in Texarkana with my extended family. Thursday we went to Grand Prairie, TX to be with Erin's family & returned last night amidst the caravan of disappointed Razorback fans (I wasn't as disappointed because I was watching the game from the couch for free).

Of all we did, simply being with family & getting a few days off was the best part. While in Dallas we ate many great meals, got to see some old friends, did a significant amount of shopping, watched numerous football games, went to a Trans-Siberian Orchestra Concert (wow, what a unique experience), & played some fun games (including our new Nintendo Wii).

I hope your Christmas was great like ours & we wish you a very Happy New Year in 2008!