Friday, April 27, 2012


John and I are trying to figure out the best way/s to communicate with you about this ministry and we would like to know how many people actually end up reading this blog. So I was wondering if you could just leave a comment below, or email me and tell me how you read this blog?
Do you follow?
Do you get an email when there is a new post?
Do you just check it once in a while?
Does the post get emailed directly to you?
Thanks for taking a minute to do this!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

A Day of Prayer

Today, our camp staff took the day off from our typical duties and spent the day praying together. How awesome is that! I was able to go out and take part this morning. The rest of the staff should be wrapping up about now but I am asking you to start now. As you are reading this would you pick one thing off the list and spend a minute praying about it. If you want to pick several items and spend an hour, please do, but anything would be appreciated! He is the list of things we spent the day praying for:

Our Full Time Staff and Their Families

Our Summer Staff

The Students Attending Camp

The Hearts and Growth of Both Staff and Campers

Safety of Both Staff and Campers

The Vision, Funding and Logistics of Moving the Donated Cabins

The Nordic Pines and the Ministry that takes place there

Camp's Finances

The Camp's Board Members and their Families

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Ops Center

This was the big project of 2011 at Expeditions, an Operations Center. Up to this point, all the tools and supplies were stored in various trailers and cabins. God blessed Expeditions with this building that allows everything to be stored in one place. It also provides a warm shop to work in during the winter months.

John and Ethan examining the bobcat

Monday, April 23, 2012

Climbing Wall Addition

Recently, Expeditions added on to the climbing wall. We have been using it more and more, including opening it up to the community on Tuesday nights. Here are a few pictures of the construction and one picture of it in use during one of the community nights.

Ethan checking it all out!

Finished climbing wall during a Tuesday night. Ethan and John are the two on the far right side.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Thanks for your prayers

John's Epidural Steroid Shot was today and the procedure went well. It was not nearly as painful as the last time he had one in 2009, and we are thankful for that. The rest of day proved to be uncomfortable, but this evening, he seems to be doing a little bit better. Please pray that this steroid will relieve some of his pain. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Youth Worker Retreat

We love it when we get to serve the youth pastors and workers that bring their groups to camp! Here are few pictures from the retreat we hosted Monday and Tuesday this week.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Climbing Day at the Lake

Great Day Climbing with Silver Birch Ranch and their NBI Crew

A Shot in the Back

A while back I asked you to pray for John when he received Nerve Root Injections in two nerves. Thank you for praying. The procedure went well, however, the results were not what we had hoped for. We were supposed to see relief within a couple days to a few weeks. As far as he can tell, he still hasn't seen any improvement. He did start physical therapy in the time since and continues to take a couple different pain killers to try and eliminate some of the pain. While he does have some days of relief, he isn't seeing an increased improvement. This Friday, the 20th, John will get another Epidural Steroid shot in his spinal canal. PLEASE pray for relief and encouragement for John. He is pretty discouraged about the whole situation.

I was listening to a Nancy Leigh Demoss radio show the other day and she was talking about trials in life and the one thing that really stuck with me was this quote, "Anything that makes me need God, is a blessing". I have to admit, it is downright difficult to see John's degenerative discs as a blessing, but in the end, if it draws us into a more intimate relationship with him, it IS a blessing. Then my mind went back to a conversation I had with John where he shared a song that had been an encouragement to him and guess what the name of the song was? Blessings! I pray that we can see all of this as a blessing, no matter how hard it is! Listen to it here or read the lyrics below.

Laura Story: Blessings

We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

'Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt your goodness, we doubt your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
As long as we have faith to believe

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not our home

What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can't satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are your mercies in disguise

A Day at the Museum

Easter weekend, John was given 5 days off and we were determined to spend some time together as a family, NOT doing projects around the house. A supporter of our family knew of this and made it possible for us to spend a day in Chicago at the Museum of Science and Industry. This was such a treat and I am pretty sure this is a trip Ethan won't forget. You see, he has been a long time fan of the science show, Mythbusters, and for a limited time, MSI has a Mythbusters exhibit. He was able to see show memorabilia and try to bust a few myths himself! I thought I would post a few pictures and send out a huge "Thank You" to the one who made it possible!

Checking out the U 505

The Wright men checking out The Wright Brothers Exhibit

Ethan was a little nervous here, ha!

He's one bright kid!

FINALLY! We reached the Mythbusters exhibit and the Duct Tape boat.

Trying to find out if you get wetter running in the rain or walking.

The black light showed the water drops on your clothing

Ethan trying to pull a table cloth out from under the dishes.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Bunk Beds

I mentioned in our newsletter that John and the crew were building some new bunkbeds and I have few pictures to share with you of that process!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Spring Has Sprung

In Wisconsin, spring has sprung. Actually, more like summer and last I checked, it was March! ( I know it is now April, but it took me a couple weeks to get this out) We have had 12 days in a row of record breaking highs and most of them have been in the 80’s. Leaves are coming out and flowers are filling the flower beds. It is a relief from the mild winter we had, where we struggled to provide winter activities for our campers. Praise God though, we had just enough snow and just enough cold temperatures to make the winter camps possible. Our new broomball rink was in use and our tubing hill got a face-lift. More importantly we received so many reports, from the youth leaders, of God’s moving in the hearts of the students.
As we move into spring, things will pick up for John. He has just finished up a climbing wall addition and we had a fun time testing it out. He is also working on building new bunk beds for the cabins so we can dispose of the old, creaky, metal beds. Something I am sure the campers will appreciate. Even though it is only March, our summer season is right around the corner and we have a lot of prep and cleaning up to do to get ready. Along with our usual summer preparations, the State has changed our license and we fall under different regulations now. What this means is, to be in compliance with the new regulations, we need to eliminate some of the beds in each of the cabins. We often fill all of our beds at Camp, so to continue serving the number of campers we do now, we have to build some more cabins.
Despite the changes and work to be done, great things are happening. Our staff is growing in unity and just got back from the spring CCCA (Christian Camp and Conference Association) conference. It was a time of great refreshment and encouragement through classes, fellowship, and Bible teaching with other Christian camp staff from Wisconsin, Iowa and Nebraska.
We are settling into our home gradually and excited to start working on a garden and the long awaited tree house. John is still working with his Doctor and Neurosurgeon, trying to find relief from his back injury. We were able to purchase a new mattress with the generous donations from several of our supporters. This has been so helpful but it doesn’t completely eliminate the back pain at night.
Partner with us!
PRAY for healing for John’s back. He is struggling to do everyday tasks that his job requires.
PRAY for Expeditions as they adjust to the new regulations and find ways to keep our numbers up.
PRAY and CONSIDER if you might be able to partner with us financially. We are in great need of monthly supporters. If this is something God is leading you to do, please give us a call or send us an email.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

All in a day's work

One of John's current projects at Expeditions is a new paintball trailer. Looks like a pretty sweet set up!