Friday, June 27, 2008

Saturday, April 19, 2008

This Girl is Amazing...

If you know Michaèla, the sweet Brit gal from Waverly, you probably know about her creative gift of painting and design. Once again, she amazed me yesterday when she spent a couple of hours at my house "performing her magic" on a redecorated bathroom. As I left for work, I told her, "Here is the shower curtain....just do something with this."

So I had to share and brag and gloat a little over how this amazing new look was created by my sweet friend, Michaèla. She started with this...

...and "Abra-ca-dabra, Al-ika-zing,
Magic paintbrush, Do your thing!"

I am quite happy with the new look--I know, I know, it's only a bathroom. But I just love seeing the results of color and shape and design and God's amazing gifts being used by Michaèla-- all of this coming together to create. Feel free to stop by the Pekkalas the next time you need a bathroom break!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

God's Great Outdoors

Today was an awesome day to enjoy God's great outdoors. Our own rvcc Club 345 visited the Brewers at Milestone Lodge and Lake as we did a little fishing, cooked up some hot dogs, soaked up the beautiful sunshine, and relaxed as we hung out with good friends. The breeze was blowing, the bobbers were bobbing, the bluegills were biting....well, it just doesn't get any better than that.

Monday, March 31, 2008


What color is your soul painted?


Your soul is painted the color yellow, which embodies the characteristics of joy, happiness, optimism, idealism, gold, hope, liberalism, sociability, friendship, death, courage, intellect, confidence, communication, travel, movement, attraction, persuasion, and charm. Yellow is the color of the element Air, and symbolizes the sun, grain, and the power of thought.

Personality Test Results

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Quizzes and Personality Tests

Monday, March 17, 2008

...start your engines!

This past Friday night, about 100 kids (and over 100 others who LOVE kids) at River Valley Community Church came together for the Amazing FAITH Race. Some guys in the church and I (although reluctantly myself) started this tradition in 2006. It is a spin-off of the Pinewood Derby where kids get a chance to build wooden 5 ounce cars from a car kit and race them down an aluminum track.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

High School Musical

Robbie Crace and I played Emile and Nellie in 1976.

My friends Nancy and Anna and I attended Piketon High School's production of Bye Bye Birdie tonight. It brought back a lot of very cool memories from my high school musicals in 1976 (South Pacific) and 1977 (Showboat). Same excitement...same stage....same LONG scene

When I was a junior in high school, I was cast in the role of Ensign Nellie Forbush in the great Rodgers and Hammerstein musical play, South Pacific. Prior to this, I knew NOTHING of musical theater. Showboat (senior year) was equally as satisfying when I played the role of Magnolia Hawks. Bob Frey was the choral teacher at Piketon then, and he encouraged me to join the HS chorus. I remember taking voice lessons from Mr. Frey (for free) after I was cast. I remember Jean Way teaching me some simple dance steps for "I'm in Love with a Wonderful Guy." I remember strangers coming up to me months and a few years afterward and telling me how much they loved the production.....the musical experience was such a memorable part of my high school years.

Playing that role in South Pacific helped me to discover just how much I loved music and the stage. Since that time, the passion has never left me. God was SO preparing me to serve him in the future. And now, whether it's organizing and encouraging the cool kids in River Pure, leading a musical production at River Valley, enjoying Broadway Across America shows with my girls, or being part of the worship team at church, I owe my love and connection to musical theater to those experiences in my own "High School Musical."

"I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair" (and send him on his way!) This was such a fun song--I REALLY had to wash my hair--yes, that's a towel in my hand...

Nellie's soliloquy after hearing that Emile may have been killed. (Dear Mr. Connett played the upright bass in the orchestra)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Happy Birthday to my Beautiful Mom

Phyllis Jean Dotson in 1944

HAPPY 70th BIRTHDAY to my beautiful mother today. Without a doubt, Phyllis Higgins is the one person who has molded and shaped me more than anyone else during my lifetime. Even though my children are nearly grown and I am definitely at the age where I should get along quite well on my own, I still rely on Mom's advice and I talk to her nearly every day about something. She is gentle. She keeps me on track. She helps me appreciate life's most precious gifts. She forgives. She builds me up. She finds the best in every situation. She shows me grace. She is Jesus, like no one else in my life. I love her so much and I THANK GOD every day for the gift of a mom like her!

Mom and Me in 1960

Mom and Me in 2000

My precious mother bore 4 children in less than 4 years....(wha??) Yes, I was not quite 4 when my sister was born. We didn't have much materially, but I sure didn't realize it. I remember Mom putting coal in the stove in the middle of the night so the fire wouldn't go out and we could stay warm. (Maybe Dad was sleeping???) I remember Mom sewing culottes for me in Jr. High (now we call them skorts)...I liked to dress up. I remember Mom would always make a small bowl of slaw for me at supper WITHOUT the dressing (I was a picky eater) and sit it next to my plate. And I remember getting surprises in the mail when I was in college....a check for $25.00! Those were the days!

Mike, Mom, Mitch, Jane, Me in 1969

Wedding Day - July 17, 1982

My mom worked in the Piketon schools as the treasurer for about 20 years. She retired in 2000. So many people are STILL telling me stories of how she went out of her way to help them (that's important when someone writes your paycheck!). When I see an old friend, they always ask, "So how's your mom doing?" My mother left her mark in so many ways. I WANNA BE JUST LIKE HER WHEN I GROW UP! Happy Birthday---I love you, Mom!