Thursday, September 27, 2018

Twelve Years Later....

Twelve years ago last night we had a crazy experience in our lives.  Thankfully it was somewhat brief, though overwhelming.  I was pregnant at the time (though only thought I was expecting Shanna, not Haley as well!) and Lee was in optometry school.  The main scar left from this experience is I get freaked out when people knock on my door when it's dark out.  Yes, to this day.  Rarely will I answer! I did edit this email (sorry Lee), but the main story is still intact.
Lee's Story (email written September 29, 2006)

Due to much curiosity and my having to tell the story over and over,
I decided to just send an email to the class describing what happened
to me Tuesday night.

That night I was working late in the library.  I actually closed up
early and was home by 10:20.  As I was walking down the sidewalk
toward my "quad" area (two apartment buildings that face each other)
I saw three guys across the parking lot walking toward me.  As I
turned my back on them to go into my quad I heard one yell out to
me.  I of course ignored him as I didn't feel like having a
conversation with three suspicious guys 10:30 at night.  By the time
I was halfway up my stairs they too were in my quad and one of them
asked me if I had a lighter.  "No, sorry" I said, and kept on
walking.  Just after I got to my door and was taking my keys out I
heard somebody running up the stairs behind me.  I turned around just
in time to see a tall lanky guy dressed like it was 30 degrees out
and with those weird fang-things in his mouth.  I also happened to
notice that he had a large pistol pointed at my head.  "Drop your
*bleep* keys *bleep* he yelled.  I dropped 'em.  "Freak, this guy's
going to go into my house" I thought to myself! 

"Drop your backpack *bleep*", the guy yell.  And then, "Give me your *bleep* wallet!!" 
"It's in my backpack" I told him (cause it was).  I guess that wasn't the answer he was looking for
because he seemed a little flustered.  He turned me around and
checked all my pockets.  That's when I got a look at the other two
guys down below.  I saw that both of them were pointing guns at me, so
that's when I abandoned all my plans to pull out the kung fu.  "Who's
inside?" he yelled.  "My wife and kids" I told him.  Not long after I
said that, thoughts of these guys coming back after my wife told me
that a better thing to say would have been something else.

Well, now he's got my stuff and he tells me to walk back down the
stairs!  'Great!' I thought, 'now they're going to take me out and
shoot me!'  Luckily, when we got to the bottom of the stairs they
just had me lay face down on the ground.  I just stayed there until I
heard my car start up and drive far enough away that I couldn't hear
it anymore.  About 10 seconds later my neighbor and another guy that
happened to be out came over asked me if I was ok.  'Good, they saw
everything,' I thought.  Turns out they just saw me laying on the
ground and thought that I had fallen down.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch…my wife had a friend over and they heard
me coming up the stairs so Ruth commented to her friend that I was
almost home.  Our door has these opaque glass blinds and she and her
friend heard a commotion and saw the silhouette of this guy pointing
a gun at me.  Luckily for me they didn't scream or even make
themselves known.  That last thing I needed was a flustered gun-
holder and my wife involved.  They ran into the back room and called

After the guys left, I went up and knocked on my door.  Nobody
answered.  I turned the door knob and it was open!  Ruth had had
several friends over that night and with all the people leaving the
door didn't get locked like usual.  Anyway, I walked into my bed room
and found a very terrified wife.  We quickly called the police
again.  We also called all our bank and credit cards and got them
cancelled.  We also called "On Star" and told them to self destruct
my van.  I wish!  Seriously though, General Motors should consider
the option!  Oh well, that wouldn't have done any good since our van
is a Mercury.

Let me just say it was not an experience I wish to repeat.  I know
God was watching out for me and I'm thankful He preserved my life
that night.  He also inhibited the thought process of my three
buddies and after only 24 hours our van was returned to us.

Last night we got a loud knock at the door after we were all asleep.
Neither of us was too keen on answering it. [We were SUPER freaked out!]
I eventually got close enough to the door to hear that
it was someone with a walky-talky.  I
took my chances and opened the door.  It was one of the Cabana's
security guards. (Our complex was called the University Cabana's.)
He said they had my car, so I followed him to the
guard shack out in front of the apartment complex.  Sure enough,
there was my van with a guy and girl sitting in it.  He got out and
told me that earlier three guys robbed him and left the van.  He
heard that the van had been stolen from the Cabana's and so he and
his girlfriend got in the stolen car and drove it here.  The security
guards recognized it and the driver told them he was returning it.
When the police arrived he told them a more detailed story which
sounded even more worthy of being on that "Dumb Criminals" show.
Anyway, they didn't believe him and so he was arrested for possession
of a stolen vehicle.

So glad our Lee is around!  December of 2006, when I DID find out that I was having twins (and completely freaking out) I was overcome with gratitude that my husband was spared to live longer and I didn't have to raise four kids ages 3 and under by myself.  We love you Lee!

We recently visited Memphis. Here is the infamous location of the hold-up and our old apartment.  We live upstairs, #2.

Oct 5 2018 (5)

And here the ground that they made Lee lay on, facedown.  He thought he was going to get shot up.  Thankfully the guys just drove away.  Better to have a stolen vehicle than a dead husband! Thankfully it's all a bad/funny memory. 
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Monday, July 9, 2018

Clark's Eagle Scout Court of Honor

It was a crazy week and weekend, but Clark received his Eagle and we had his Court of Honor!  YAY!  We had the Dash & Splash that morning, plus lots of family in town for the big event. 
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Clark did a service project collecting used bikes for local refugees.  He also held a bike clinic where people could come and learn some bike maintenance basics. He was able to donate about 15 bikes that were in good condition.
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We're thankful for Joe McIntre and Len Aamodt who helped with all the scout stuff!  And especially Len for all his help with details about the board of review and all the processes involved!
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Lee receiving his mentor pin.
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Clark cousin Anthon had received his Eagle a few months prior.
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Clark and his Bishop, Michael Weiler.
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Grandpa and Grandma with Clark!
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Mike, my brother-in-law took the awesome photo of Clark.  Thanks Mike!!!
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Deb helped me with set up and I love how she did the photos!  Thanks!!! I forgot to take pictures of the refreshment table.  I kept it very simple.  We had lemonade, cookies from Costco and strawberries. 
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20180528 Clark Scout Portrait-034-8x10

Clark was in the 4th of July parade (on the 7th, ha ha) so my family was able to go to that.
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Of course lots of candy!!!
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Love it when my front yard is full of vehicles!
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For dinner we ate at the park.  Of course we had to have dessert later!
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We enjoyed a lovely evening at the park.
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Sunday, July 8, 2018

Dash & Splash

A local event/fundraiser here is the Dash & Splash.  Lee's office participated a couple years ago and again this year.  We had lots of family in town for it, plus one of Lee's team members and his family.  So fun to have such a large group!  First we had breakfast at Lee's office then went down to the starting point for the race.  It's a mile run and then a mile float down the Shenandoah River.  The weather was perfect!
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There were prizes for different age groups.  My nephew Paul on the far right won and then Shanna won something as well!  So fun!
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Saturday, July 7, 2018

4th of July Holiday

Happy 4th of July!!!  We hope you all had a wonderful holiday with family and friends.  I am so grateful for this amazing country we live in.  God Bless America!

Our friend Eric was able to spend a little time with us in July which was fun. 
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The kids bring quite the spread on fast Sundays to eat afterwards.
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A Sunday cream sandwiches made by Lee and Haley.
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The 4th of July holiday started early.  We headed up to Lois' for a couple of days of fun.  First stop Cunningham Falls.
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There is a fun beach and lake area.  Plus Deborah and her family there which was awesome!
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We headed back to Lois' for a cookout. 
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That night was an evening out for adults.  We hit up a local diner.  I love diners!  They have about 200 things on the menu and plenty of dessert choices!
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The next day we went to Rocks State Park.  There is a fun water/wading area and then a little waterfall.  The kids loved it.
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Cal enjoyed making cairns again.  So fun. 
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Love this! 
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Cal went back early with Jeff and Lois to their house and this is what Cal made. creative!
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Later that evening I drove back down to our house to finish up some scout stuff before Clark's court of honor. 
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The next morning Lee and I drove up together to Pennsylvania for the 4th of July!!! The Ereksons, Bunkers, Heits, my parents, and Darrell's family were there. My mom set this up as our yearly reunion.
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My mom bought edible bugs for the kids to eat.  Rhett is thoroughly thrilled!
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We enjoyed a yummy lunch and visiting and of course had to do a pie eating contest!
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The next day we traveled to Gettysburg for a visit and lunch.  My mom challenged the kids to memorize the Gettysburg address.  And some of them did!  A couple of my kids learned the first couple of lines.
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Later that day...tubing down the river that runs behind Darrell's house!
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We had another fun couples date by visiting a bookstore in Mechanicsburg.
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We are definitely going back here!
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We heard that if you go to Hershey Park during the last hour of operation for the day that you get in for free.  Well, that used to be true a couple years ago.  But not for us.  We tried.  We thought it would be fun to go for one hour.  Since we couldn't get in for free we went over to the visitor center area and did the free little Hershey Chocolate tour.
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The next morning was a temple trip to the Philadelphia temple!  Clark, Cal and Lee did baptisms with their cousins.  I love that my sisters set these up!
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Some of us met up at a park about 10 minutes from the temple. 
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What a great way to end....the temple and a park with family!