Monday, September 12, 2011

9/11 Memorial Lights

We went downtown Brooklyn to the waters edge that over looks the South Street Water front in Manhattan. The 9/11 lights are only used on the anniversary, and we were in the city this weekend. Not by our planning, but we were glad to be a part of this special anniversary as 10 years has passed. I was able to get some pictures, and although it was a very cloudy night, they had an etherial quality about them. I wish we could find our better camera, but our phones do well enough for my non-photography specialist self.
The pictures are from early evening to dark, and the clouds got heavier as the night wore on. 
Walking to the river front, I took this one through a fence, and the branch in the foreground looks pretty cool. 
You can't really see it clearly, but the Statue of Liberty is at the cluster of lights on the far left of the picture. From a different angle, I would love to see her centered in the lights. That would be breathtaking. 
Micah took this picture with an app called Photosynth. It allows you to take multiple shots and then stitches them together for a panoramic or 3D view. It is quite amazing. Maybe I have my photographer with me after all! Here you can see The Freedom Tower pretty well lit up in red white and blue. 
As the sun fully set, the clouds got lower and lower. They almost looked like a ball of light where the beams shot through. 
May the Lord of Glory so shine in our lives and hearts! 
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Post Irene Clean-Up...

While traveling on deputation, our family is often asked if we sing, play instruments, do dramas (we have enough, thank you!) ... anything creative! Sadly we are not a musical family, nor are we terribly creative. We are however blessed with three strong sons, and a very wise father that has trained them in multiple trades and skills. They know everything from painting, roofing, car repair, landscaping, and tree removal... just to name a few! 

We have been in Connecticut since labor day, and Hurricane Irene preceded our arrival. She didn't do the mass damage they predicted, but what she did do, she did well!  One of the families from a supporting church lost half of their massive Maple tree, and were given quotes of exorbitant amounts to get it removed. We went over Sunday evening, and by the light of our headlamps of the truck, figured we could, if nothing else, give them a slightly smaller job to hire out. 
Dan first cut off the lower of the two large branches extending past the tree it landed in...
then it was on to decide how to drop the upper branch. 
He didn't want to obliterate the neighbors garden, if at all possible. While assessing how to best make the cut, he noticed a large, dead branch hanging just above the limb, and resting on the one he wants to cut. 
While it is dead, it is also water logged and would pack quite the force should it fall on his head! 
Levi and Micah devise a scheme to get the dead branch out first... successfully and without any concussions! 
Then on to the sawing... 
And falling... PeRFeCtLY, I might add! Chopping and dragging and more cutting and dragging! 
They were tossing the logs over the wooden fence, that you can see here has suffered some for the cause! 
But it was better than walking the logs around the very large and interminably long fence... a whole 10 more feet! 
In their de-fence, errr I mean defense... those logs were very heavy! 
Once the large branches extending the tree were down, it was on to the main trunk that was lodged in the neighbors tree. 
I wish you could get the scale of that tree. It was seriously huge. And it was raining all day on and off, hence the orange rain coat in some pictures. Which was pointless as it got soaked after 3 minutes, but it seemed the right thing to do! Notice the water line on the pants...! 
The saw had a 20" blade, and would make it through 2/3 of the tree on the thinnest part. At the base it was at least a 35" diameter. Pretty huge! And heavy, perfect to lodge a saw in! 
It is a little blurry... cell phone pics and rain dont agree...! 
But if you look you can just see a chain dangling from the cut. They took the whole saw apart and spared the bar. Thankfully as (obviously we don't travel with chain saws...!) all of the equipment was borrowed. 
 But once it was safe to try "plan B"...
the base of the tree was attacked. 
If you can see Levi's head there in front of the tree... he is pretty close to it and he looks like a little boy next to it! Some seriously massive logs were cut and stacked, and unbelievably.... the entire tree was taken down! They never thought they would accomplish the whole job, but after 8 hours it was finished. Praise the Lord there were no (major!) injuries, and they have a lot of wood to burn for next winter! 
I say no major injuries as there always has to be some excitement.  Aside from some scrapes, a few toes being whacked by a falling limb, and a minor stabbing between two brothers (not even related to the tree job... on Lunch break nonetheless!), all was well. We were thankful to be able to be a blessing to these folks, and they were very glad to have that tree down! 
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Singing wherever they can!

While at a Bible Conference in Naples, NY with the Street's, some of the kids did an impromptu help with worship! Savannah is second in from the left, and her friends are all around her! Always fun to see her jump in whenever she can! 

We spend a little of each day at Keuka Lake, one of the finger lakes. It was warm and clear! Perfect for BFF's to hang on the dock...
Livvie and Savannah
  ... and to skip rocks with the guys!

Isaiah, Sam and Savannah
What a beautiful week, and what a wonderful conference! We learned some great truths that were compelling, provoking and encouraging. It doesn't get any better!

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