Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Promised Pictures - A Daddy's Handiwork

Last fall Joel's parents came to visit for Thanksgiving. It was wonderful! They stayed for an entire week and we enjoyed them immensely.
In order to keep Joel's dad occupied, we created a list of projects he could help us with around the house. Only a few ended up being done because we managed to keep him busy with other things, but one item on the list that was priority was completed. Joel and his dad built a play structure in our backyard.
This play structure is special for a number of reasons. Right now it's more of a treasure because it has been added to bit by bit over the last year. But, the foundation of the structure is special to me.
This is Rylee on Thanksgiving Day in front of the play structure. It's definitely Texas--she's wearing a ballet outfit outside at the end of November!

You see, when we lived in a townhouse in Harrisburg, PA, Joel's parents came down for a visit and Joel and his dad took down our old fence. They replaced the worn boards with new ones and Joel's dad took the old lumber back to his home in northern PA.

During our support trip last fall (right before his parents made the trek down here), we saw the lumber still in his dad's backyard and asked him to haul it to Texas. He did!
Our play structure is made from the wood that used to be the fence in our backyard in PA. There's something really special to me about having a piece of Harrisburg right here in my Texas backyard!
I'm starting week 4 of a Bible study on the book of Esther. For several reasons that I can't fully explain in a blog post, looking at that play structure-- seeing wood that was useless to us in PA being so useful here in Texas--is speaking deeper truths to my heart about where God places us and when He does it!

Right now I'm in Texas. I'm a wife. I'm a mom to three small children. I serve in our ministry to a limited capacity. But, I can do so much more than what meets the eye. I'm not useless as a fence. I'm being refashioned to be a fort!

I was tempted to end my post there, but there's more to share about this cool fort. We bought the slide for about $15 off craigslist. Joel figured out how to use washers and make it attach to the structure. Then, the structure sat relatively unchanged until this summer. During a visit to one of the local home improvement stores, we saw the rock climbing wall marked way down. When we got to the register, it was even cheaper! Then, last weekend, Joel saw the roof assembly on major sale. So, the fort has changed a lot in the last month. The kids are having fun with it and seem to like it better with each new modification.

And, just to show how different things look, here is a shot of our backyard when we first moved into our house last summer and a shot I took the other day.


  1. how will big people fit up there now though? :)

  2. I was just thinking how if that was OUR house, the before and after pictures would probably look exactly the same. :)

  3. That's fantastic!! I love the story behind it. I hope to do the Esther study; I've done several of Beth Moore's, and some of them have really affected me. Just did Daniel. Of course, with a name like Beth, how could I not like her? ;)

  4. I loved the posting. The story behind it and your applications are great. - Joel