Thursday, December 14, 2017

Road Trip to Louisiana and the Mississippi Gulf Coast

This past weekend we made our last road trip for this Stateside Assignment.  We had a few speaking engagements lined up that we were excited about doing.  We left our home on Saturday afternoon headed south.  Our first stop was at the Louisiana Welcome Center. 

Welcome to Louisiana
It is not every day that you get to see it with a little bit of snow.

Our first destination was Covington, LA.  Once arriving we checked into our hotel, let the boys swim for a little while, and then headed out for a Chick-fil-A supper.  Then we attended the Saturday evening worship service at First Baptist Church in Covington.  During our first term on the mission field when we worked with the Kekchi we had a partnership with that church and hosted many teams from there.  It was good to see a few of those former team members again that night.

On Sunday morning we were scheduled to speak during both morning worship services at New Zion Baptist in Covington.  The pastor there, Bro. Clark, was our former pastor at our home church before we moved to Guatemala.  Every Stateside Assignment he has invited us to share with his congregation.  This was our third visit there.  

We were up and out early in order to get to the first service.  It began at 8:00.  In addition to sharing in the worship services we also sat in on one of the adult Sunday School classes.  Our time there was wonderful.  We enjoyed getting to share and worship with them as well as catching up with Bro. Clark and Pam.

I took this photo when we got in our car that morning.  It was cold outside!

our family with Bro. Clark and Pam

our visit there in 2014

our visit there in 2009
(I was pregnant with Cruz during that time)

I took this photo when we returned to our car after church.  It had warmed up some.  I was glad.

We joined them for lunch at Acme Oyster House (so delicious!) and then spent the afternoon at the hotel. 

The boys spent a little more time in the pool and hot tub. 

On Sunday night we were back at FBC Covington to watch their children's choir performance of Jingle Bell Beach.  It was really cute and I am glad the boys were able to watch the kids perform.

Later that night Bro. Clark and Pam stopped by the hotel for one last visit.  They brought a few Christmas gifts too.  We enjoyed getting to sit around and catch up with them one last time.  We had a lot of laughs sharing old memories together.

Bro. Clark and Pam with the boys

Legos!!!  Do you think they liked their gift?  I would say a definite YES!

On Monday morning we left Covington headed towards the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  Along the way we made a stop at the Infinity Science Center for a field trip. It is located in Pearlington, MS.  The boys enjoyed exploring around and learning a little about the space program.

an F-1 rocket engine

they thought that was cool

David searching for our Guatemala home on the satellite map

There it is.  The photo was not up to date so our actual house was not built yet nor the hotel next door but the land is there.  It was fun to see it and show the boys the loop where we ride our bikes back home.

Ben enjoyed playing with these Jenga blocks

Cruz making waves

One of their favorite things was this area where they used a tablet to control a ball.  They had to try to get the ball to roll over the ramps.

They also did a bowling game controlling the ball with a touch screen.  They loved it.

We did a bus tour of the NASA/ Stennis Space Center. One of the highlights of that was seeing the area where they test the engines.

Of all the things we did that day the boys very favorite of all was this large area filled with foam blocks.  They spent a long time there building and playing.  Building is definitely one of their favorite things to do.

They worked together to build a fort.

almost done

After leaving there we headed on to our next destination, Pascagoula, MS.  I had a speaking engagement to do there the next morning.   We spoke there on our last Stateside Assignment and had the best visit.  I was excited about returning again.  We first drove down to the beach area and walked around some.  I love all of the beautiful homes along the beach drive.  It is so pretty there.

We walked across the pier.

me and my boys on the pier in Pascagoula

David and Ben

the Pascagoula pier

A few photos from our last visit there back in 2014.  The boys were so little.


I loved these signs.  Who wouldn't want to live at the corner of City Park and Beach?  The best of both worlds.

Right across the street from the pier is a city park.  We took the boys to play there last visit and again this time.  My boys love a playground. 

enjoying the city park in Pascagoula, MS

We checked into our hotel and before going out for supper we did some school work.  Even on the road school has to be done.

On Tuesday morning we drove over to First Baptist Church Pascagoula where I was the guest speaker at a WMU ladies luncheon.  I just loved this group of ladies when I was there before and was so glad that it worked out for us to return and share there again.  We had a great morning of sharing and a great meal together before we headed out.  I am thankful for groups like this who love missions and love missionaries.  Their prayers and encouragement definitely keep us all going when we are on the field. 

me with Mrs. Betty
She schedules our visits and hosts us so well.  

We made one last stop before returning back home.  It was at the TatoNut Donut Shop in Ocean Springs, MS.  We love getting to visit there.  Their donuts are the best.  

We ordered a dozen assorted.  We each picked out three.  We ate a few there and took the rest home.

We love donuts!

we also love coffee

We returned home late in the day tired and ready to rest.  We had had a wonderful few days of travel.  It was a great way to wrap up our trips for this time in the States.  We have definitely been all over and I am not quite sure I am ready for it to come to an end.  We have one more local speaking engagement left and then we will focus on spending the holidays with family.  We are scheduled to return to Guatemala in mid-January.  That time is quickly approaching.   I am already praying for a smooth, easy transition.  Would you join me in praying?

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