Thursday, May 2, 2019

Greetings from Blue Bonnet Youth Ranch


Our view here at Blue Bonnet Youth Ranch from our little home on wheels!!!

We spent last week at Colorado River Thousand Trails,
attended Cowboy Church of the Hill Country on Easter Sunday,
and then traveled last Sunday to BBYR
where we met up with our friends, Jack & Donna.

After chatting with Stephen, the administrator it has been decided we will be the Full-time Relief Home Parents working Friday afternoons to Monday mornings and filling in for vacations and emergencies.  We are excited for this schedule to begin but that won't be for a couple of weeks or so as we need to complete their training, get our TB/drug tests ~~ which I chuckle as I remember the time we were working for Funtastic Shows Carnival and Albert came up to us as we were pulling into the Portland yard letting us know THEY were doing random drug tests...and we said no problem and he kept saying "you don't understand, drug tests"  what he didn't understand was that was NOT a problem for us!!!  

We will have a two bedroom, two bath apartment for our main residence and then a suite in each cottage (like a hotel room ~ private bath, living/sleeping area) when we are on duty so we won't have to be moving stuff around each week.  I will take pictures once we are settled in!!!

We  will have a place for any of y'all that want to come visit!!!  We can't wait to see some of you come this way!!!!!

Our two weeks off between gate~guarding and arriving here at BBYR was spent sleeping at night and being awake during the day or at least I should say tried to sleep at night and be up during the day :)

I still have times where I wake up at 3a and think I need to get ready for work.  Heard from some friends, it took them almost 3 months to get back into a normal schedule.  Sure hope it doesn't take that long!!!

Our phone numbers are staying the same ~ if you want our address let me know!!!

Wishing each of you a blessed day!!!

Monday, April 22, 2019

A Little Update ~

335 days of gate guarding is complete!
Actually our last day of work was Sunday, April 14 and we were on the road for a new adventure by 7:30a on Monday, April 15.

First stop was Kermit, TX at the Winkler County Park for five nights.
We slept, saw our friends Gary & Amy twice!! Enjoyed relaxing, made a couple of trips back to Pecos/Barstow: one to return the Lac Keys that we forgot to turn in and then once to go to the West of the Pecos Museum and get our mail.  

At the museum we saw life from the 1800's to present day.  It was interesting to read about the oil trade, see relics of homes and doctor offices and we enjoyed some cantaloupe jelly beans...Pecos is famous for cantaloupes.  That is one of the things we enjoyed a lot of last summer ~ so yummy and fresh!!!

While staying in Kermit we made three trips to Odessa to the Verizon store to get a mifi card.  Bought it on Wednesday, took it back on Thursday because it did not work and still spent over an hour on the phone with customer service Thursday evening and still it wouldn't work, so back to Odessa on Friday morning.  Was told "they had a new one that would work...well guess what, nope didn't work, same issue as the old one so we did not get a wifi card for ease of accessing the internet but such is life.  

Today, here in Columbus, TX I am thankful for the free wifi at Thousand Trails, Colorado River and where we are parked I can access it from our little home on wheels.

Saturday we left Kermit and made our way to Dripping Springs, TX and
Cowboy Church of the Hill Country  Ron had emailed the pastor and asked if we could park our trailer there for the night and then attend services on Sunday.  YEP ~ so we did.  We had a great day on the road and enjoyed our time together traveling once again.  We arrived at Cowboy Church about 6:30p and since we didn't have hookups when the sun went down so did we...it was so quiet it was almost hard to fall asleep BUT we did!!!  We heard a truck pull in around 5:30a to set up for the Sonrise Service which was set to begin at 7:15a.

We joined them for coffee before the service, met some wonderful people who love the Lord and celebrated our Risen Savior!!  What a blessing to be together, holding hands, singing songs of praise and fellowshipping with other believers.

After the Sonrise service we visited with a few people and then had a traditional Texas breakfast of burritos ~ made with scrambled eggs and venison sausage.  So very tasty and filling and of course, lots of coffee.

The worship service started just before 10a...what a joy and blessing to be a part of this service.  Enjoyed the music, both listening and singing and the sermon was wonderful sharing of what Resurrection Sunday really is and means.  It was wonderful to be in the house of the Lord, sitting with my hubby, singing praise songs and fellowshipping with other believers.  

After church we made our way to Columbus, TX to Colorado River TT Campground.
We did the basic setup and then headed into town to get gas (that's another story) and dinner...we ate at Nancy's Steakhouse.  For dinner we each had a salad, baked potato, steamed veggies, grilled shrimp and a ribeye!  It was a delicious dinner and most of all we enjoyed sitting together, no trucks interrupting our meal and a sweet waitress who kept the water and tea glasses filled to the brim.

We will be here at Colorado River TT till Sunday, April 28th when we will head out to start another new adventure.!!

Our new adventure is taking us to Blue Bonnet Youth Ranch where we have accepted the position of Relief House Parents.  To start we will be working 3 days with 11 days off!!!  And you know us, we can do a lot of traveling those 11 days!!  Ron is already busy planning multiple trips including Land O Lakes, Florida, Blaine, WA, Milledgeville/Atlanta GA, Arley & Cullman, Alabama, Nashville, Arkansas and Branson, MO to name a few!!!

We are looking forward to working with our friends, Jack & Donna, sharing God's love with children and hopefully making a positive impact on their young lives.

That's our news for now!!

Will update again soon!
Now it's time to head to the pool and enjoy the beautiful surroundings we find ourselves!!!


Saturday, March 23, 2019

10 Day Writing Challenge ~ Day 5 ~ If Given a Pass for Anything in Life What Would it Be or Do You Already Have It?

Day 5 Writing Prompt is a bit different...so I rephrased it to fit more to me....


It doesn’t necessarily mean that every single thing always goes exactly the way you want.
But it could mean that everything, in the long run, does work together for your ultimate highest good.
It could mean that sometimes when a door closes, it’s because you’re being steered in a better direction, in the long run.
What one piece of evidence from your life (e.g., a grace you lived through, a miracle or blessing you received unexpectedly, a time everything worked out when it looked like it might not) suggests that you might already possess a Whole Life Spiritual VIP Pass?
I don't need a Whole Life Spiritual Pass because I Have JESUS in my life, I believe he was born of man, died on the cross and was raised from the dead to save me from all sin and give me ever lasting life (John 3:16)  I reflect, often on my life where I came from and where I have been and where I am headed, what I have done and do now that is different...I think about questions from people who have helped direct me in my life..."what could you do differently?"  "where was God when????"  and "what would Jesus do?"
I seek God when I am troubled, I give him praise for the many blessings in my life...if I were to list them out I couldn't write them all down because I would get cramps in my hands from writing or typing...but I know I am blessed, I am loved by God, I am HIS daughter, the daughter of the KING, I'm married to my best friend, who has loved me through the good and hard times, who has laughed and cried with me, who has thrown his hands up and said "what the heck?" and hugged me so tight I could not breathe.  I have known joy...seeing the face of innocence in the eyes of new born babies and the face of sorrow watching my baby breathe his last breath and wondered why? oh why? did this or that happen??
I am thankful I can look back and see that even through the rough times I can see how they could be worse...what if I had gotten pregnant when I was raped by my step-dad?  how different my life would be from today....and I can play the what if game?  what if Royce had lived...how different our life would be....what if Ron's dad had not gotten cancer...would we have stayed in the military and retired...how different our life could be...but I know that I am where I need to be, right now for today, for such a time as this...I remember asking our pastor's wife one day...how do you know you are doing what God wants you to do??? and she said...you just step out, take one step, God has the power to change the direction of that step if He sees fit...so each day I step out in faith, that I/we are doing what and where the Lord wants us to be and do...
We have talked a lot lately about the near future...a job that might  be offered, a trip we want to take and then we say well what if???  and so we step out, believing and trusting the Lord that each step will lead us where He wants us to be and that no matter what is going on or what happens, we are never alone and HE is always with us and HE will always provide a way.
Yes, we make plans, just ask Ron how many trips he has planned and planned again but we have learned to be flexible, when we come to a crossroad we say left or right, straight or turn...and we just move forward.
We have plans, we will do this if .... and we will do that if .... and through it all each day we will give Jesus the love He has given us, we will share His love with others the best we can...that's all we can do...is to love others as God has loved us.

10 Day Writing Challenge ~ Day 4 ~ Letters to Myself

Writing Prompts are hard sometimes, yesterday I wrote about not focusing on the past and then this morning the prompt for the writing challenge I am doing asks me to think back to that little girl and what would she want me to know today and what would I, as an old lady would say to me...this is a hard one but let's see what I can learn from little Alice or the grown up and worn out Ali has to say....

Day 4 of the 10 Day Writing Challenge ~  Just let the words flow onto the page, in bullets or fragments or whatever:
1. What questions do you have for your Younger Self?
2. What does your Younger Self want to remind you?
3. What questions do you have for your Older Self, a version of you 10, 20 or even 30 years in the future?
4. What does your Older Self want you to know?

As I read the prompt the first thing that came to mind was this picture of me:
taken in the first grade (1962 or 1963)
and how my mom was so mad when she saw the picture because I had taken the bow out and put it back in sometime before pictures were taken that day...I see a little girl who just wanted to look so pretty...and I must say she sure was a cutie pie!!! So innocent.
Little Ali would want to remind me that life is precious, enjoy every moment and just because times can be hard it's okay because there is always light and good around you.
When I look in her eyes I see hope and anticipation, hope for future and wonder where will she go?  Little Ali would  never have imagined that she would fly on an airplane, live in a travel trailer because she wanted to, worked for a carnival or learned how to be a good mom and love her grandbabies to the moon and back!!

10 Day Writing Challenge ~ Day 3 ~ Life, Oil Fields, Plans...

Writing Prompt ~ Day 3 Writing with Ease

I love to talk and write, Ron even says I write like I talk...A LOT!!!  
  • What about your future dream, destiny or life have you been telling a story of dread, difficulty, fear or doubt about? What is that story? Who have you been telling it to?
  • What payoffs have you been getting out of telling the old, hard story? Has it been allowing you to avoid the discomfort of growth? Have you been bonding with others over it?
  • Would you like to tell a new story about this part of your future?
  • If you're ready to let the old story go and you would like to tell a new story about your future, write your new story now! What’s a new story of ease about how your life's work or dreams will come to pass? Be playful, fantastical and light in this one. Tell yourself a story of fresh, new possibilities that start now.

These prompts are right on target for me today...the other day Ron took a picture of me in a new t-shirt he had bought me.
Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, standing and indoor
When the shirt arrived I didn't think it would fit...it is size L, I have been wearing a 2xl forever so I just folded it up and set it aside.  A few days later I needed to go into town so was changing out of my normal clothes of FR (Fire Retardant) clothes while working here in the oil fields and thought "what the heck...I should at least try it on...and was pleasantly surprised that it fit!!!  

My thought in seeing the picture was "stand up straight, quit slouching ~ thanks Mom!!!).  I shared the picture and my thoughts with a friend and she said "quit picking at you!!!  You look great!!  And then she sent me  this
Image may contain: 3 people, including Ron Workentin, people smiling, indoor
WOW!!!  What a difference a Year Makes!!!!

And I thought...I really need to focus on the here and now, not the past and stop worrying about what the future holds...and then this prompt came up...and I was reminded again...stop living in the past...I do that a lot...live today!!!

Today is a new day!!!  And we are getting ready to start a new adventure...we have been here in the oil field for almost a year, have been gate guarding here in Barstow, TX for 312 days!!!! and have 60 days till we head to Waco, TX and then continuing on to Florida, and eventually Hebron, KY to work with Amazon for a season!!!

This time in the oil field has been interesting and has been just what we needed for our lives this season...we have been able to pay off quite a few bills and even a few of the new medical bills from Ron's breast cancer surgery (YES men get breast cancer!!) and we have cleaned more dust out of our trailer then we could have ever imagined.  I have crocheted more than I ever could have imagined, hence the shirt Ron got me!, and I look forward to crocheting more...I have lots of projects to do from blankets to Toothless the Dragon to a life size dragon to baby blankets to dishcloths to ?????

And so now we look forward to new adventures, seeing friends and family that we haven't seen in quite a while, making new friends along the way, attending graduation of a special boy who is turning into quite the young man, seeing grands and kids, sleeping in the same bed with my hubby at the same time ~ as we like to say "what a novel idea" and enjoying God's creation and beauty around the US.  

A sweet friend of mine posted this on Facebook
this morning and I thought ~ how appropriate for me too...I look back at my life often, beat myself up for the things I did wrong and then I am reminded that no one is perfect and we all have done something wrong at some time BUT with God's love, forgiveness and new days life continues and so my goal as we prepare for this new adventure to enjoy today, be in the moment, see God's wonderful glory in the moment and plan for the future...not live in the future but at least have an idea of what is on the horizon...I say that lightly as we all know, at least RV'rs know...our plans are like Jello...wiggly and never settled firm till they happen!!!

Thank you Lord for leading me through this life each and every day, for blessing me with a husband who loves me in all my quirkiness, for two healthy sons who have chosen wonderful women as their wives and the five wonderful grandchildren I have here on earth and for our three angel babies waiting to be held and hugged when we are reunited in heaven one day!!!

I am truly blessed and I pray that I can live each day giving YOU the glory and honor that I owe you!!!  

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

10 Day Writing Challenge ~ Day 2

Day 2 of the 10 Day Writing Challenge ~
POD #2: Altitude training
BEFORE you took this Challenge, when was the last time you trained at altitude—diving into something that stretched you beyond what you’d ever done or felt before, or stepping out toward a dream without the perfect resources or plan in place?
How did it go? Describe the adventure. What new superpowers did you develop in the process? What powers—extraordinary traits at the core of who you are—did you realize you’d always had, all along? And what powers do you intend to grow and unlock here, in this 10 Day Writing Challenge? Declare it!
Altitude training ~ the first thing that came to mind was the many challenges I have faced in my life and overcome...when we moved to Holland...I was a scared 19 year old with a new baby, dealing with the loss of baby, being truly separated from family and friends and traveling alone...a four month old is really not much company.  But what a trip it was ~ visited for a week with my Grandpa, met aunts and cousins I didn't know I had, saw parts of this beautiful USA where I had never been, found out I could handle the unexpected...like picking up the wrong suitcase at JFK Airport, going to the hotel, realizing my error, traveling back to the airport, connecting with the man who had my suitcase full of diapers and exchanged it for his suitcase of men's suits, got drunk for the first time...who would have guessed that, realized no one could steal my baby from the airplane when we were 30,000'+ up in the air ~ yes I thought that...I know too funny when you actually think about it.
And one of the most important lessons in life I learned while we lived in Holland...let me set the stage...we had a little yellow pickup (unheard of by European standards) and was a target of the local police.  The third time I got stopped and was told that Jamie's carseat had to go in the back (we had a canopy on the truck so it looked a little like a station wagon) I marched my 19 year old butt into the base commander's office...um  YOU DON't DO THAT!!! Demanded to see Colonel Nutt (yes that was his name) and told him in no uncertain terms that I needed to go back home to the US where I wasn't ridiculed...the first thing he did was sit me down and then asked "was your husband in the military when you married him" Yes.  "Do you know that you can get him in a ton of trouble for coming in my office like a crazy woman?" No "Well you can" and then he proceeded to tell me he could fix the issue with the carseat/truck...he had a sticker in his drawer for such a time as that but most importantly he wanted to give me some advice...
"My job, as Ron's wife is to make his home a happy place, love and support him in every way possible.  I may be married to Ron but  he was more married to the US Air Force and I needed to remember that.  No matter where we go in life I was to be Ron's helpmate, to encourage him and not do stupid things that could get him in lots of trouble with a Commander or a boss."  He then gave me a hug, told me to enjoy our time in Holland and he didn't ever want to see me in his office again. 
By then I was really in tears, prayed Ron wouldn't get into trouble and went home.  I did get stopped by the police about three weeks later and when I showed him the sticker on the carseat, he smiled and said have a great day.  I never got stopped after that.
That has been the best advice I have ever received and I am so thankful for Colonel Nutt for not responding in a way that would or could have had detrimental effects on my life and my marriage.  And I have thought of his comments often as we have moved, over 40 times in 43 years of marriage, not counting how many times we have moved the RV to a new park, that I have always tried to make our home a happy place for Ron and for our family.
I don't know about any super powers gleaned or I want in the future, what I do want to do is to continue to grow in my life and relationship with the Lord, He is the best Commander in life!!!  And to continue to love and support Ron in our marriage and this adventure we call life.



Tuesday, March 19, 2019

10 Day Writing Challenge ~ Day 1

I'm not sure how I found this writing challenge, I think it was on Facebook but I thought it might help get me in the habit of writing each morning.  Today is Day 1...here is the link if you want to check it out.  
Writing Prompt of the Day #1: What's Your Game Name Now?
I have never watched Game of Thrones, don't know anything about it so will  be flying by the seat of my pants as I write this morning.
What’s your 'Game Name' now? Whether you’ve ever watched the show or not, if you could create your own Game of Thrones name, what would it be? 
I am Ali, also known as Wife, Mom, Grammy, daughter of the King, Friend and Encourager; I have also gone by the name of Margaret Alice ~ my given name, named after both of my grandmothers, one of whom I never had the chance to meet and don't really know much about her and the other who loved me in her special way, who made some special memories with me; loves Jesus and York peppermint patties; enjoys traveling with my best friend and lover, Ron; Crocheter of Gifts ~ sharing my love for others as I can; First of Her Name as there is none other like me!!!
What do you think?  Do you have a name for me that maybe I overlooked?  And why would you give me that name?





Greetings from Blue Bonnet Youth Ranch

Our view here at Blue Bonnet Youth Ranch  from our little home on wheels!!! We spent last week at Colorado River Thousand Trails, ...