The Googegs - Strangers in the World

The Googegs - Strangers in the World

Sunday, December 9, 2012

If it's brown, it's down . . .

We heard this phrase often when hunting season started. Usually from a grizzled looking, obviously a hunter, when at the sporting goods section. I was usually there buying a tag or license for my two older boys. I don't really look the type, but there ya' go -- I was available to make the trip. This year -- Braydon got his first deer.

A button buck.
We are grateful to so many people. There was the 4H shooting club we joined that has awesome leaders who really taught the kids how to shoot and be safe. The friend who bought the boys their first gun and then took some of the kids to their hunter safety class. After that, he took Braydon and Ricky on their first youth hunt. Youth hunt is a sacrifice for the men who helped us. They have to be with a youth, but cannot hold a gun or participate in the hunt. So, they sit, sometimes all day and ... like the first two years of youth hunt days .. with no reward!
This deer was shot on a man's private land which he allowed Jerome and the boys to use. After he sat through this years youth hunt with them to no avail. However, the next open hunt weekend they tried again. The first day with no success and the second day -- finally the button buck.
It wasn't Ricky's day, but he was a faithful brother. He will get to hunt again on December 15th. Hopefully it will be his turn.
To add to the excitement, it was decided that we would do the processing ourselves. I say "we" but the guys did almost all of it. I just helped get the grinder going at the end. We all learned a lot.
The littles learned not to be afraid and that we wouldn't waste any of this precious provision.
You-Tube videos were very helpful for first-timers.
Braydon said that he really liked hunting, but he was surprised at how much he enjoyed the butchering process.
Learning the grinder was the last of the process.
Matthew 24:45  Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Men of the Strongest Character

My son has always been interested in the military. Lately, he has become quite focused on SEALs. SEALS are started on their intense training in a class called BUD/S (Basic Underwater Demolition / SEALS). In his research on requirements and general information he came up on a documentary on YouTube that follows a BUD/S Training class 234 .  He started telling me all about this documentary and the great stuff he was watching. I asked him (of course) about language. I had images of "boot camp" stuff I had heard about.  A lot of yelling and cursing.

"No, no language."

That's good. I really didn't get too excited until one day he said: "You know listening to these instructors is like living at home. They sound like you guys."

Hello! That comment had me grab a cup of tea and plop in the chair next to him.

"Excuse me? I am some sort of drill Sergeant now?"
"Nah, I mean, they say the same stuff."

What I saw has kept our family talking for a good two weeks. First, I recounted it all to Jerome who then organized a family viewing of one segment. Braydon and I completed watching the rest of the segments a few nights later and we still bring it up in conversation.

On the official website for Navy SEALs the stated goal of BUD/S training is as follows:
Basic underwater Demolition/SEAL training, or BUD/S, is designed to find and develop men of the strongest character who give everything they have to accomplish their mission and support the men on their team.
Well now, it is all becoming clear. Our family is committed to Christ and we are striving to raising children in such a way that will "...make ready a people prepared for the Lord." (Luke 1:17). In other words, we want to raise our children to be of the "strongest character who give everything they have to accomplish their mission..."  Apparently, being a Christian parent, attempting to raise children mighty in spirit for the Lord, is akin to being a Navy SEAL instructor.

So, we say the same the stuff like : "Pay attention to details." "When you are asked to do a job, do your best the first time." "Follow directions!" "I am not here to tear you up, I am trying to build you up."

I have to be real here and say that it is hard for a Mama to be excited about the prospect of sending her son off to be a SEAL some day. It is dangerous. However, I support my son -- how could I not support a young man who truly desires to be a man of the strongest character.

Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.  1 John 3:16

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Pushing Through

Our Mary is great at crochet. However, finishing a long project seems to be a difficult project. When she started this afghan I told her she was required to finish it; then I harped, I scheduled mandated crochet times in the evening and I just basically kept on her. I wasn't just being a tough task master, I knew that if she could go all the way through she would have that sense of great accomplishment and that feeling of "I can do it" would carry on to the next project.  Finally, after persevering -- SHE DID IT!


Way to go Mary, it is beautiful.

Friday, November 23, 2012


I would say that Thanksgiving was a quiet holiday, but I don't believe the Googeg tribe does too many things quietly. It was just our family and lots of food. We are so blessed to have each other.

 When the cousins came over the day before, the younger set kept themselves quite busy.

Other of us were busy cooking:
Jerome roasted a fine goose
Ayin made the turkey
Miss Adela really outdid herself in the kitchen this year with pies, cookies and other dips and dressings.
Of course there was more to do than cook. Ricky worked hard putting together a verse memory game.
Braydon helped set us all up.
Mary was busy with many behind the scenes projects which are so important to getting things ready for a big dinner.
Dinner was indeed great and we were very emotional as we thought over all that we have to be thankful for, especially that long table full of so many people. How God has bless us with children and family!
After the dishes were mostly cleared, the kids and dads headed out for soccer and such and some of us got busy on some crochet projects.
Even though we had the family together, we were still missing one which left a hole in our festivities. Thanks to Skype even Riane was able to join us all the way from Taiwan.
We miss her so, but are so excited for all that she is doing and learning in this season of her life.
It was a good day!

Thursday, November 1, 2012


There has been much delay since my last blog post. To say I am busy sounds a little cliche -- every body's busy. It just feels that nailing down this new homeschooling year has taken quite an adjustment period on us all. It is good and it is flowing, but I am spending my creative energy in teacher/mommy mode. However, I am ready to ease back into my blog.

This month we are focusing on right heart attitudes as well as "Ask, Seek and knock." A curriculum suggestion was a scavenger hunt. It is not really my style, but I decided it would be fun and break the monotony. Little did I know my plan would land on the first snow of the year.

There were lessons all along way:

#1 Look for God all the time... even during mundane activities -- listen for the nudge to do something different.

All seven of the children walked right by this large board that had a clue clipped to it and dutifully sat down ready for unit study time to begin. I had to sneak up to the back door and encourage them to read the note.

#2 Seeking God means reading His Word carefully so you will be able to follow it.

They studied all their clues very carefully.

#4 Don't Neglect the fellowship of believers. 

They were told to work as a team and they certainly worked together.

#5 There is Joy in Seeing the Lord.

It was fun!

#6 You will face adverse circumstances.

 Bundling up to face the wet snow.

(Someone commandeered the camera to get a picture of the photographer)

#7 Keep Seeking the Lord even when it is hard and you will get a glimpse of Him.

Their first site of Mom in the middle of the field.

#8 When you know where God wants you to go -- don't hold back!

 The Home Stretch!

#9 If you Seek the Lord you will find Him.

 They reached the end.

#10 God promises us rewards for seeking Him.

But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.  ~ Deuteronomy 4:29

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ridin' the Rolly

Every year Jerome's work place hosts a family day at King's Island. The entry fee is super super low. Our family always goes. I figure once a year at an amusement park is enough and it is really the only way we can afford to go with a family our size. So once again we were gearing up for the big day. All of sudden it was like a rock rolling down hill, things just kept going faster and faster. It ended up being one great blast of a weekend, but I seriously don't think we could have fit in one more activity.

First, Braydon discovered that if you arrive early you could participate in a 5K. He was very interested and persistently kept Jerome moving (pun intended). Ricky decided to join in too and was always very loyal to stay right by Dad's side. To make it to the race we had to leave home at 5:30am. It was early, but we also got preferred parking. It was great.

Ready to run.
Cheering them on.
The Big Finish!
Braydon 33 out of 683 runners. Not bad for his first 5K.
Ricky 259th
Jerome 262nd.
It was so exciting. They want to do it again! We were so proud.
As great and exciting as the 5K was -- that was not really the start of our big weekend. A few days before, we got a call from one of Jerome's brothers (Joe) who lives in Washington state. He was going to be in the area for a work related training and could just make a visit for that weekend. He agreed to go to King's Island with us and we couldn't wait to see him. So the families here got together every moment we could; Anthony and Jerome hadn't seen Joe in 20 years. The rest of us had never met him. It was whirlwind, but it was fabulous.
Before a weekend of this magnitude there's nothing to do but throw on your apron and bake cookies.
Then, fire up the grill.
Joe, Anthony and Jerome
The first meeting. Isaiah's a little shy of new people -- slow to warm up I guess you could call it.
Hanging out at King's Island with their "new" uncle.
After all the thrill rides we stopped off at our favorite Chinese Restaurant. We didn't arrive home from it all until after midnight.
It sure was a roller coaster of a weekend, but we would not have missed the adventure for the world!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

And so we labored ...

For our labor day this year ... we labored!  It was hot and humid; the work was long and tiring and we were so thankful the rain held off and everything was completed. It was a good day.

We have received many blessing this year:

A friend let us pick all the apples we wanted for the promise of an apple pie. These were all peeled, cored, cut and frozen a couple of weeks ago, but Labor Day afforded me the time to bake 3 pies.
Now we are on to the tomatoes. The garden has been producing well. I have been freezing the cherry tomatoes and here is another basket ready to go. While I was freezing, Mary and Adela harvested the rest of the ripe Romas.
Set up for processing. Adela, Mary, Wokelle and I skinned and cored all that we could get. Jerome will be canning tomorrow.
The big job of the day:
Installing two new windows.
We knew there were problems with the original windows, but we didn't know how extensive until Jerome ripped into them.
Uh-oh a lot of ripping and some new wood.

Mighty men on the job.

Lunch break -- a picnic outside.

Checking the final work.
By the end of the day they finished both windows.
Working together as a family has taught us so many wonderful lessons and drawn us so much closer. The work is not always fun, but the team is terrific.