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Joy in the Journey

April 4, 2013

by Linda Beerman
Greetings from the beautiful state of Arizona! We are out here this week visiting our daughter, Ranell, and also my brother, Jeff, and his family in the city of Yuma. This city of 120,000 is located on the border of California and about eighteen miles from the Mexican border. Besides enjoying the culture of the southwest, the eighty degree temps and lovely sunshine every day is soothing and an added treat to us. It will be ten years this July that we moved Ranell here in 117 degree weather. After that sweaty experience, we vowed that our visits would be in winter or early spring! We have tried to come yearly, and it certainly is a joy for us! ( A big thanks to Neil Clarke for always being willing to do our milking so we can have these adventures..)

We flew out from Sioux Falls in the early afternoon of Good Friday. Right away we had a little glitch as our suitcase was almost six pounds overweight. (Dan had warned me after carrying it, that it might happen J.) So off the scale it came, and we had to relieve its contents. A little embarrassing, but the Allegiant attendant was helpful by telling us that jeans weigh about two pounds. Good to know! Two pairs of jeans and one pair of shoes later, she said, “ I’ll take it”. Our carry-on bag just got a little heavier, not so bad.

Our flight was full, but comfortable. Since we did not want to waste sixty dollars just to reserve seats, we were placed in two separate rows. No problem, since the flight is only three hours due to the time change. I enjoyed a visit with a gal from Madelia who was coming out to pick up her mom from her winter home. Ranell and her friend, Shelly, picked us up in Phoenix. On our way west we enjoyed supper with some good friends in Sun City. She is a childhood friend of mine, and I don’t think we’ve laughed that hard for a long time. With “old” friends, it is just like you pick up where you left off from the last time, isn’t it?

After a good night’s rest, we just leisurely enjoyed Saturday together in Yuma. We started our morning by going out for breakfast burritos with rice, refried beans, machacha or an egg and bacon mixture. Machacha is shredded beef with onions and sweet peppers. A little messy to eat, but delicious! Grocery shopping for our Easter meal was on the list, with a little ride around the town in the morning sunshine. Plus we added a pedicure just to really spoil us!

Saturday evening found us in the little town of Somerton at a fundraiser for a family that had lost a young mom and son in an accident. It was held in a park, and the line was non-stop for a few hours. I guess it doesn’t matter where in the world you are, people find ways to give and show their love to those in need. It just made us happy to see the love outpoured, and the smell of the chicken cooking in the big vats of oil got us ready to enjoy the meal.

Easter morning came quite early for us as we got up about five o’clock to go to a unique sunrise service out in the foothills of the mountains near Yuma with my brother. It was held on farm land, where we watched the sun come up over the cliff. Music drew us in with the guitar and enthusiastic melodies of songs old and new to us. Cecil, who spoke of Mary and Martha and the dying of Lazarus, is both a farmer and a minister. We enjoyed a visit with him after the service, and found out that this event was started thirteen years ago by his father. Five hundred chairs were set up for this worship, and most were filled. We went away encouraged by the good news of the Resurrection and the Life of Christ.

After breakfast back at my brother’s home, Dan and I headed for Ranell’s church where she is the director of children’s ministries. We always enjoy the energized worship there, and the warmth of the people. Pastor Tyrone delivers the message with truth and conviction, and intersperses humor which keeps everyone’s attention.

We finished the day with a wonderful meal at Jeff and Jane’s home, and an afternoon of playing games, laughing, visiting, and more snacking during an evening movie, “Zoo Keeper”. Still ahead this week is a lot of relaxing, a birthday party, and a night at the Yuma county fair! We are definitely looking forward to enjoying Kammann sausage on a stick, Indian fry bread, and ginormous cinnamon rolls at this fair. We have always wanted to experience this! What a fun time we are having. Blessings to you all as you begin this first week of April!

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