Monday, August 4, 2008

Stuebs Family Benefits

Monday, July 21st of 2008 was a very sad day for a family who we are close friends with. That day while camping at a resort in Colona Illinois their live were changed forever. They woke that morning to a storm unlike any they had ever been in before. It was a rare type of storm that blew straight line winds of up to 94 miles an hour into their campsite. Just after sunrise that morning, becoming aware of the danger they were in Jason, the father, scrambled to get his family to safety. Unfortunately they did not have enough time. A large oak tree near their camp snapped and fell onto the family tent. The tree pinned their four year old son Dustin beneath it's massive 18 inch in diameter trunk. The families 9 month old daughter Savannah was struck in the head. All the Stuebs' 7 children were hurt in some way. Dustin and Savannah did not survive their injuries though.

I can't imagine the pain our friends are going through, I don't even pretend to know what it would be like to lose two children so tragically. My faith in Christ, and in what he tells us in his word assures me that those two children who we mourn woke up in the arms of Christ. They went from pain and sorrow, to playing in streets of gold before a loving Father. I pray sincerely for those childrens' loved ones, and would ask all to do the same.

The family is in need now, they haven't asked for anything but those who love them are seeking help for them. They operate a non for profit thrift store and have no insurance. The last thing that grieving family needs to worry about is whether they will be able to pay their bills. There are several benefits being planned, we just finished one at a restaurant in Springfield Illinois called Mariah's. We thank the owner, Sam, for all his help and thoughfulness in doing this for the Stuebs. There is another planned for August 17th at the Fieldhouse Pizza & Pub from noon to 6 p.m. There will be a live auction and games for kids. Those who are interested can also send donations to any Marine Bank in Springfield Illinois, or mail them to 3120 Robbins RdSpringfield, IL 62704. Checks can be made out to The Stuebs Family Benefit.

Raising Chickens

As a family we have been trying to come up with a family mission, a common goal that we could all work together for. We all decided that we would enjoy raising some chickens, just to kinda get our feet wet and teach the children responsibility, diligence, hard work, and also have a lot of fun with it too. We're currently on round two with this family experiment, we originally what 12 chickens and 2 turkeys. We didn't have anywhere to “brood” them so we set up shop in our living room. We set up one of those large storage totes and put a heat lamp in it. I loved having them in the house, the kids played with them and fed them. After about 5 weeks though we moved them to my father in-laws garage and upgraded them to a cattle feeding troff. Two weeks later we turned them loose into their pin we had fixed up. That night something killed 3 of them. Here I am trying to work on character building with my children and I fail, oh I got hot about that. It had to be somebody's fault. That afternoon I went around and made sure nothing could get in or out of that hen house. Next morning, I go out to see how good I did... something had not only killed all the rest of my chickens but made a night of it, seeing as how none of them could get out. He picked them clean. Everyone was discouraged, especially me (like I said I fail often, but Lord willing I'm going to fail forward). So for the next two weeks I was determined to eliminate all forms of chicken eating life from our lil' town. I set a live trap every night, and every night I caught a tom cat or a coon or something. I did this till I couldn't catch nothing else. So now we have twenty chickens, they're about 6 weeks old and looking good, I'm struggling with being short about them. I found I'm being a little over protective of them, as much as I cherish the idea of building life skills in my children by allowing them to help and encouraging them to explore this little fowl things, I loath the idea of loosing. I won't be beat by a stinking tom cat again.