Tuesday, April 27, 2010

What We've Been Doing in Wenatchee

Hello There!

Sorry it's been awhile since I have updated my blog. When we arrived in Wenatchee last Tuesday we hit the ground running.

Last Tuesday, we pulled into the bone yard about 1:35. Ron quickly got us parked and Shawn hooked up our power. Ron then got changed into work clothes and then they were gone. Set up was supposed to start at 1:30 but Shawn had seen us pulling into the bone yard so he turned around and helped to get us hooked up so Ron could work set up too. After they left, I called Theresa and let her know that we had made it here. She was glad we were able to get the motor home fixed and had made it to Wenatchee. I then spent about an hour setting up the motor home and getting organized. I even found time to take a 2 hour nap ~ it was wonderful.

Wednesday and Thursday we both worked all day. I was in the office all day Wednesday. Thursday morning I set up all three ticket boxes and then in the afternoon I worked more in the office. Wednesday night we had our first guests for dinner since starting with the carnival. Shawn, Albert and Sophie joined us for a delicious dinner of roast beef, potatoes, carrots, celery and onions. We had a good time visiting and getting to know each other a little better. Wednesday after I was done with work, I made a quick trip to do laundry since we were not able to do it on our travel day due to the motor home problems.

We heard on Thursday that a dear friend of ours, Doug Freeman went home to be with the Lord. Doug was 81. It was hard to know that we would not be able to attend the memorial service for him or to be available to help at Northwood with the service. We did hear on Saturday night that the service was well attended and went well. We are thankful for answered prayer.

Friday the carnival was due to open at 5:00. We had to be at work at 2:30 to make sure all the computers were up and working in the ticket boxes as well as make sure all the signs were up with the correct prices. It was a good thing we had started early as we had printer problems. Seems Ron hooked the printer up to the wrong outlet on the computer. Won't make that mistake again. Friday night at the carnival was a busy night as sponsors had given out wrist bands for free rides from 5:00 to 8:30 p.m. The carnival lot was crowded ~ the first we had ever seen that. It was a nice sight to see all the happy kids and all the rides in action.

Our jobs this week are a little different. Since the Lions Club is the sponsor of our carnival here in Wenatchee, the Lions Club members sell our tickets ~ it is their biggest fund raiser of the year. Ron and I have to train each person at the beginning of their shifts. Ron and I also respond if there is a problem in one of the ticket boxes. Another job we have this week is doing cash pick ups from the ticket boxes and the two food booths that belong to Funtastic Shows. We are getting lots of exercise as we walk from one end of the lot to the other. I am also spending lots of time in the office doing Customer Service and helping with payroll and counting money.

Saturday and Sunday we opened at noon so we had to be at work at 11:00. The carnival stays open till 10:00 p.m. each day. We did lots of walking and interacted with lots of people. Customer Service is going well. I know that is because the Lord is answering my prayer for things to go smoothly when I am in that position. I have heard such horror stories of how customers treat the person in Customer Service but so far nothing bad has happened to me and no one has called me names or even swear at me. For that I am thankful.

Sunday started off with some bad news. Shawn found out that his cousin had been killed in a pedestrian/bus accident in Portland, OR. She was only 22. Shawn and Albert were given the day off to make arrangements for Shawn to go home on Monday morning. He is from Enumclaw. He went home on Monday morning and then drove on to Vancouver, WA to be with family. He will rejoin us when we are in Sequim. Since Shawn had to leave, now Ron and I are the show van drivers. We drive the van from the bone yard to the lot for each shift and at the end of the day. It appears I will be driving the show van to Sequim when we head out next week. I will find out for sure either today or tomorrow if that is the plan.

Monday morning we were woke up at 9:50 a.m. by three gamer people who wanted to go and do laundry. We had to call Rick to see if it was okay to take a group to do laundry. Rick said yes, so Ron took 7 people to do laundry and then to Walmart for some grocery shopping. I went with Albert & Sophie to Costco, Walmart, Home Depot and then the Grocery Outlet. It was nice to be able to stock up on things like granola bars, bottled water (we are drinking 3 to 4 bottles a day), sliced cheese, a roaster chicken and plastic ware. Since we do a lot of boon docking (camping without hookups) we have opted to use paper plates and plastic ware to save on water going into the holding tanks. At Walmart I found a pair of black slacks and a pair of black capris so now I have four pairs of work slacks as well as buying 10 white t-shirts for Ron. I think we now have enough work clothes to get us through a two week carnival run.

Sunday, Ron was pleasantly surprised as he ran into a friend of ours from home. Sean Smith, from Birch Bay, was here in Wenatchee for some training and was walking through the carnival when they ran into each other. Sean took Ron's picture and sent it home to Teresa via his cell phone.

Monday night at the carnival was a little crazy. It was the first night where you could buy a wrist band and ride unlimited rides for the evening. Another new thing we had to teach the cashiers how to sell. I spent the first hour we were opened running from ticket booth to ticket booth fixing errors ~ wrist bands not being scanned when sold which made them not work on the rides. We had our first lost child ~ a little girl of about 6 or 7 who got separated from her parents was found wandering in the games area. We put it out across the radios that she was lost, where she was at - sitting with a gamer in front of one of the games and asked ride operators to watch for frantic looking parents. We are happy to report parents and child were reunited after about 15 minutes.

Ron and I have enjoyed two treats at the carnival. One is a bag of dried onions that are like potato chips. You can get white onions that are flavored with butter, salt & pepper or red onions that have paprika, salt & pepper on them. They are delicious and only cost $2.00 a bag. I think I am going to buy a couple of bags on the last day to take with us. The other treat is getting a large cup of fresh fruit & vegi's (mango, pineapple, watermelon and cucumbers) for $3.00. The fruit tastes yummy and the price is pretty good. Oh, a third treat Ron has enjoyed a couple of times is fresh made lemonade.

That about sums up our last week here in Wenatchee. The Apple Blossom Festival runs through Sunday, May 2nd. We have heard rumors that tear down will be a two day affair next week so not sure when we will leave for Sequim from here. I hope to find out today or tomorrow if I will be driving the show van for that trip.

Praises this week ~

~ for good weather this week as we worked
~ that we were able to get the motor home repaired and a safe trip to Wenatchee
~ for being able to meet our financial obligations
~ for all the walking we are getting in. Ron lost 4 lbs last week and I lost 1 lb.

Prayer requests ~

~ we are still waiting for one check to come in from a customer. Ron spoke with him and was told that we should get our money around the 5th of May. Please pray that it comes in as we were told
~ for continued good health. I spoke with my endocrinologist and she lowered my insulin and I have not had any problems with low blood sugars for over a week.
~ for safety as we work especially as we do the pick ups of cash from the ticket and food booths

Thanks for reading my blog and keeping up with us as we live/work/travel with the carnival. Feel free to leave a comment or drop us a note on facebook or via email. We love hearing from you!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Going to Wenatchee - Part II

We are in Wenatchee!

After spending the night at the RV Repair Shop we were their first customers of the day. Josh started working on the motor home about 8:30 a.m. He checked all the fuel lines, checked the fuel filter, then crawled out from underneath the motor home and talked to Ron some more. Then they both went in and talked with Mark, the owner. Josh then came inside the motor home and opened the engine cover. He took something apart and exclaimed...well look at this...a burned out coil. He took it out, talked to Mark and then ordered a new one from Napa Auto Parts. We waited about an half hour for it to arrive and then Josh put it in along with another new fuel filter, which by the way looked pretty dirty.

After Josh finished, Ron went in and paid the bill. Another $260. That made a total of $345 for repairs in two days.

We then went and got gas and got back on I90 and headed towards Snoqualmie Summit. Made it without any problems, continued on to Bluett Pass and went up and down without any problems. Our speed dropped to 35 miles per hour but that is to be expected since we don't have a huge engine in this thing. We arrived in Wenatchee about 12:30, stopped at Walmart and bought us each a new pair of tennis shoes. Then off to find the bone yard. It is about 2 1/2 miles from the carnival lot. The carnival lot is right alongside the river. We drove past that on our way to the bone yard.

We got parked into our spot, hooked up the electric and then Ron changed and headed off to work on the set up. I spent some time organizing the inside of the motor home and am now catching up on emails, sending out this blog update and then will make something for dinner. Hopefully this evening, Shawn or Albert will give us a ride to the laundromat. We didn't want to stop and take the time to do laundry today as Ron wanted to get here and get to work as planned.

We will be here in Wenatchee for the Apple Blossom Festival through Sunday, May 2nd. We leave for Sequim on Monday, May 3rd.

Praises ~

~ that we knew an honest and reliable mechanic who got us fixed and running as quick as possible
~ that we had the money to get the motor home fixed (thank you Northwood family for the gift!)
~ that we slept well last night
~ and for the uneventful trip to Wenatchee today

Prayers ~
~ still waiting for one more check to come in, Ron is going to call Chad tonight to see where it is
~ for us to have a good work week

Thank you all for reading along on our journey of living/working/traveling with the carnival. Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question.

Love and miss you all!

Alice & Ron

Monday, April 19, 2010

Moving to Wenatchee Today - Part I

Today we began our move to Wenatchee for the Apple Blossom Fair.

Ron worked till 5:45 this morning. He came home, showered and then slept till about 8:30 a.m. I had gotten off Sunday night at 10:30 so came home, showered and went to bed. I slept till about 5:15 a.m. when my blood sugar dropped again to 55. I got up and ate a yogurt, drank a juice and then ate a granola bar. Got my number back up to 90. Went back to bed, woke up briefly when Ron came in and fell back asleep till about 8:15. I got up and started getting things ready in the motor home for the move to Wenatchee. We were ready to leave the campground at 10:00 a.m. I had not heard from Rick or Theresa that I was needed to drive a company van so we headed out.

Our first stop was to see Cory Crawford at the elementary school where he is the principal. He was Jamie's 3rd grade teacher and a good friend of ours. We attended his wedding the summer after Jamie's 3rd grade year. It was so good to reconnect with him. I showed him the family book that Danalyn made for us for Christmas two years ago. After visiting for about an half hour we left him so he could go back to doing assessment tests on some of his students and we made our way to Winco to do some much needed grocery shopping. After having a lunch of sandwiches in the motor home we then made a stop at Target to get a couple packages of white t-shirts for Ron. He only had 4 and we needed to make sure he had enough to get him through two weeks of carnival work since we don't know if we will be able to get away to do laundry while we are in Wenatchee. After Target we filled up the motor home with gas on got on the freeway headed to Wenatchee.

We were driving along and started climbing Highway 18 when the motor home started acting like it wasn't getting any gas (like it had done when we were on our Fall trips last year). We stopped/started multiple times on Highway 18 but made it to the top of Tiger Summit. Going down hill the motor home had no problems. After missing our exit to I90 and turning around we headed through Issaquah and through Northbend. As we started the climb up I90 the motor home again began having problems. We started/stopped multiple times again finally turning off at exit 38. Ron made the decision we would turn around and go to the mechanic who had replaced our alternator two years ago. We knew him to be a good and honest businessman and trusted his work. We pulled into his shop about 2:30 p.m. It was about an hour wait before they could work on our rig so we each took a short nap. At about 3:30 they drove the motor home into the shop. Found a melted spark plug wire, replaced it and $85 later we were back on the road. We made it about 15 miles before we started having the same starting/stopping problem and so Ron quickly called Mark back at the shop, told him what was going on and said we would make our way back to the shop so they could work on it in the morning. It was now 4:45 and they close at 5:00. Mark said he would put out a 30 amp plug for us for the night so we could have power (that's why I can write on my blog tonight and check emails). Now they are thinking we have a bad fuel pump that will need to be replaced in the morning.

We arrived at the repair shop at about 6:00 p.m. Ron got us level and I hooked up the power. Ron then called Rick & Theresa to tell them what was going on and that we would not be in Wenatchee tonight as planned. Rick's response was a positive one and said better to take care of the problem now before things get possibly worse. Ron felt bad that he was not going to be at work tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m. as scheduled but we also know there is nothing we can do tonight. We did spend some time in prayer thanking the Lord for getting us to a safe and secure spot for the night and that we are not stranded somewhere on the road.

We had a dinner of brats and mac & cheese. Ron then spent time reading and I have been checking emails and writing my blog.

Please keep us in your prayers that the necessary repairs will be made quickly and without a lot of expense and that we can then get back on the road and over to Wenatchee. We still need to make a stop and do laundry before settling into the bone yard.

On a positive note it is very quiet here and relaxing and after a busy week it is a nice break. We know we are where the Lord wants us for the night and are looking forward to a new and wonderful day tomorrow.

I will make another post tomorrow night to let you know how things turn out tomorrow.


Long Week in Puyallup

Hello There!

Stopping in to let you all know we survived the Puyallup Spring Fair. Ron worked 64.25 hours and I worked 53 hours. Needless to say we didn't do much but work and sleep. Ron ran the Fire Brigade ride. It is a kiddie ride in the shape of a fire engine. All the kiddos are seat belted in and then the fire engine goes up and makes a circle in the air. The ride lasts about 3 minutes. Ron said the most fun was to watch the kids in their excitement of getting on the ride and going way up.

I worked in the Rides Department office and Customer Service. God answered my prayers as the gal I worked with, Debbie, is a Christian. She holds the same position with the White Unit that Theresa does with the Blue Unit (the unit we work for). We had some good talks, sharing how the Lord is working in our lives and how he brought each of us to work for the carnival. Debbie has worked for Funtastic Shows for 22 years. It was so nice to be in an office where there was no swearing and just a positive outlook for each day. I look forward to meeting up with her again in Eugene and Salem later in the year. I handed out uniforms, pay sheets, coats and answered lots of questions each day. At the end of each day I collected the uniforms, pay sheets, coats and answered more questions. I also helped to process the prior days time sheets, handed out Show Dough (purple dollars that worked the same as cash at three different food booths and was a draw from peoples checks).
At the end of the day yesterday I did the inventory of coats and shirts some of which stayed in Puyallup for the Big Fair in September and some were sent back to the Portland office.

Again God answered my prayers ~ before going to work in Customer Service I was told all these horrible stories of angry customers swearing at you, calling you names. The picture that was painted was one that I was not looking forward to working in. I prayed that the Lord would give me the right words to say, for me to have a joyful and happy heart while I was working and to let the love of the Lord shine through me. Every interaction with the customers were a good one for me. A couple of times I had to ask for help from Rick or Ron Burback but all went well except for one customer. In Customer Service I answered questions and checked ride cards to see how many games and ride tickets were left as well as deal with upset customers for a various reasons. We always tried to send them away happy. There was only one negative experience. I opened the window to a lady and just as I did, she started spouting things to Ron Burback who was sitting behind and to the left of me about how evil he was, that she had a good lawyer and she would see him in court, that she knew his name and was harassed for the last time by him. Ron Burback, called on the radio for the police to come and escort her off the property. Many things had transpired in the hour before I went on duty at Customer Service with this lady and she was clearly drunk and reaking of alcohol. It wasn't but a couple of minutes and three cops came up and stood at the foot of the stairs of Customer Service and watched her from afar. I felt very well protected by the local police department. I didn't see that lady again. God is so good and helped me to have an easy time at the Customer Service window whenever I was working at that post.

For the Big Fair in September I will probably do much of the same things that I did this past week, at least I hope so.

I was very proud of myself as I only spent $2.50 on a pepsi one day. Ron did buy a couple of scones so we did really well in NOT eating the fair food. We have been taking our lunches to work as well as yogurt for me and granola bars for both of us for snacks. Now to just keep that up for the rest of the summer.

I did meet the owners, Mr. Ron & Bev Burback and their son, Ron Burback. They all seemed like nice people.

One exciting thing happened while there though...on one of Ron's lunch breaks he went walking around and found Karen & Cory Crawford and their pygmy goats. Cory was Jamie's third grade teacher at Dick Scobee Elementary in Auburn. It has been over 20 years since we have seen them though we have kept in touch through Christmas cards and letters. Today, before leaving Puyallup we went by Zieger Elementary School where Cory is the principal and spent about an half hour with him. We showed him pictures of the boys and their families. It was so fun to get caught up with each other.

That about sums up our week in Puyallup. We go back there the weekend after Labor Day for 17 days.

We leave on Monday 4/19 to go to Wenatchee for the Apple Blossom Festival for two weeks.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Change of Plans for Alice this week at the Puyallup Spring Fair

Change of plans for Alice ~

Just got a call from Theresa about my job this week at the Puyallup Spring Fair.

The original plan was that I would be working in the Pizza concession stand Thursday through Sunday. This is because Puyallup hires their own ticket sellers and they are not through Funtastic Shows. Okay, no problem for me. I don't mind doing something different. Now the plan has changed again.

Mrs. Burback, one of the owners, switched people around in the office jobs and now there is an opening in the ride office for me and it is an all day job...12+ hours each day. Guess the Lord knows I need the hours :) My job this week will now be clocking people in/out at the beginning and end of each shift. They run two shifts a day here so I will work in the morning's handing out time sheets, clocking people in and then work on the previous day's time sheets. Then at the change of shift in the afternoon I will be clocking people in/out and then again at the end of the swing shift I will be clocking people out. In between times I will be processing the time sheets of all these wonderful ride people. I like doing the time sheets...reminds me of payroll when I worked at OptionCare. In between times if the Pizza concession stand gets slammed I will be helping in there. I will be working 13 to 14 hour days Thursday through Sunday this week.

A little update about yesterday and today. Theresa had asked me to be "on call" to do office work yesterday and today. I worked all of 15 minutes yesterday processing/making bar codes for the rides. Once again she commented on how quick I was ~ maybe I should learn to work slower ~ just kidding :). She was supposed to call me about 5:00 to help do some data entry last evening. I didn't hear from her so I called her about 8:00 p.m. The first thing she said after I identified myself was "oh crap, I forgot you. I am so sorry" I told her no problem. I had made a nice dinner of chicken and wild rice and ate it with Ron and we had a good evening together. After talking for a few minutes it was decided she would just call me today when she was ready to teach me how to do the data entry stuff - it is inputting all the employees into a separate payroll system that is used only for the Puyallup fairs. She said she would call late morning or early afternoon today and it would be four or five hours of work. Fine with me, I like having my mornings free to spend time in the Word, praying and then time on the computer checking in with friends and family.

So Theresa called me at 9:30 this morning and said the plans for my job have changed. She was talking to Mrs. Burback about my skills in the office and what a quick learner I am. And that is how the change in what I would be doing this week happened. Theresa asked if I was okay with the change...of course I was...office work is definitely more my thing then working in a pizza stand. And I thought to myself, I can do anything for four days.

Don't want to leave Ron out of what is going on with him. Yesterday, Kenny, the rides supervisor, started teaching Ron how to set up the Lolli Swings (a giant lollipop with swings on it). The guy who currently is in charge of setting up the swings is getting a little forgetful and Kenny wants someone on there who knows what they are doing. Ron said he liked learning how it all goes together. So today is finishing up setting up the Lolli Swings and then will go on to the next job whatever that is. Today could possibly be a long day for set up as they have to be totally ready to go for tomorrow morning. At least the weather outside is nice. There is not a cloud in the sky, the sun is shining bright and it is just beautiful out there.

Praises today ~

~ for the hours this week. Even though they will be long it is what we need to get back on our feet financially after 3 months of almost no work for Ron
~ for the nice weather. It is so much easier to work outside on nice weather days then in the rain and cold.
~ for the nice evening Ron and I had last night and the good sleep we both had. We both woke feeling ready and eager to start the day
~ for the check from Sunset Inn we received yesterday. It was not the big check that we are still owed but it was still a payment that came in that had been owed to us since early March.
~ that Theresa and Rob Rhew (he is the one who interviewed us and offered us jobs right away and who is the boss of Theresa & Rick and the Blue Unit) recognize my skills in the office setting and are utilizing those skills in the work I am being asked to perform

Prayer requests ~

~ for us to have the energy and stamina to work the long hours this week and to work with a cheerful heart and attitude
~ for the checks to come in that is still owed us from jobs that were completed before we left Blaine

Thanks for reading my blog and holding our prayer requests up to the Lord. We know the Lord is in control and feel the love and prayers of our many friends and family as we travel this journey of working/traveling with the carnival.

Till next time, Alice

Monday, April 12, 2010

Monday, April 12th - Puyallup, WA

Good evening!

I have gotten a few emails asking where I have been since I did not send out any blogs this past week. We have been a workin' at the Lacey, WA carnival. This past week was much better than the week before. We were open every day! The weather the last few days has been just gorgeous and we had lots of visitors to the carnival. We continue to enjoy seeing the little children encouraging their parents to buy tickets and being so excited when they realize they get to go on the swings or the bears. Saturday we worked our first full 8 hour day and then yesterday I worked 11 hours and Ron worked from Noon on Sunday to 3:30 this morning. The carnival was open from Noon to 7:00 p.m. and then they had to do the tear down. I worked in the office with Theresa from 6:30 p.m. till 10:50 p.m. I was tired at the end of my shift but Ron was plain exhausted when he came in the door this morning at 3:45 a.m.

We have seen a few different things this past week:

~ a girl with very purple hair
~ a guy with dregs (that crazy hair do where it looks like it is all in knots) that was longer than mine, he also had the weirdest beard I have ever seen. He was clean shave on his cheeks and had growth from the chin to below that was about 4" long. To top it off he was wearing a skirt with jeans!
~ and of course girls in short shorts on a cold, wet, windy day
~ two middle school girls who kept flirting with Ron through the ticket window. They told him he was nice and then came and told me he was nice. I said I knew that because I had been married to him for 34 years. They just giggled and walked away. Later they came back by the booth to tell us good night and they thought we made a cute couple. The next day they were back ~ came to window and asked if they could have some free tickets. I smiled and said, no, we can't do that. They replied, that's okay you are still both cute and nice.

I had a great conversation with Shawn yesterday morning about how the Lord has been working in our lives and the doors he opened for us to be able to come to work for the carnival. It was neat to be able to share all the details from the first email to our prayer before going in for the interview, to being offered jobs within the first 15 minutes, to all the positive comments and encouragement we have received from so many. Shawn said it is nice to see how the Lord works isn't it. It is neat to find another believer among the carnival workers. From the things Shawn shared, we think Albert, his roommate and best friend, is also a believer. We will investigate that further once we are in Wenatchee.

Ron had his first negative interaction with a customer when she accused Ron of stealing $20 from her. We were taught from the very beginning that when a customer gives us money we are to either put it under the corner of our cash box or lay it on top, then print up the ticket and count out their change. She had not handed Ron any money but swore up and down that she had. She finally gave Ron more money to get her tickets. She then went and complained, quite loudly, to her friend and then went up to Customer Service (Theresa) and complained. I spoke with Theresa later in the evening and Ron's cash box came out to the exact penny ~ Ron and I both knew he had not taken the money but it was nice to have that confirmed by Theresa. She did say to me, she was surprised that had not happened before because that is one of the most common things that carnival workers are accused of ~ stealing their money either from a ticket seller or a gamer. Ron and I were glad to see the Lord working and affirming Ron's honesty and integrity.

On a positive note, I was asked to apply to be a show van driver as right now there are only 3 people who can drive company vehicles and they need a van driver to transport people from one location to another. This will mean extra hours for me. On one hand I felt good that they asked me to do this because the extra money will be nice on the other hand it means that Ron will drive the motor home and I will drive a company van so we won't be traveling in the same vehicle though we would caravan from one location to another. I should hear this week if I am approved to drive or not. I am thinking if Ron was and he has a couple of speeding tickets on his record I should have no problem being approved. We will just have to wait and see.

Late in the day yesterday while I was on my break, Rick went and spent time with Ron in the ticket box. They couldn't talk a lot but Ron said it was nice to have Rick out there seeing that he does his job well. One thing that Rick talked to Ron about was our time in Puyallup this week. This is the week that all three carnivals come together to work the Puyallup Spring Fair. Theresa had said that the week starts Tuesday morning with set up and goes non-stop till the tear down is complete on Sunday night.

Anyway, due to the fact that all three carnival units come together there are 13 condo units plus numerous travel trailers and fifth wheels in the bone yard and it is very crowded. Rick asked Ron if we would like to park in the campground where the show managers, Ron Rhew (who hired us and is one of the upper management people) along with the Burbacks (the owners) camp together. We would have full hook ups which is something we have come to appreciate since we were two weeks with just the two holding tanks (have to really watch how much water and stuff goes into the gray and black water tanks) and it would be much quieter. Ron said that was fine with us. Rick did not know if we would have to pay or not to camp there or if we could get a pass. Ron said if we did, then we did. Well, I went on line and the fee to camp here is $25 a night. I prayed that we would be able to get a pass for the campground especially since we had very few hours last week. Well, God provided (doesn't he always?) for us. We pulled in to the campground and was greeted by the camp host. She asked if we were with Funtastic Shows. We said yes. She told us where to park and to have a great time this week. And didn't charge us! Yeah ~ we didn't have to pay $175 to camp this week while we are working.

Since Sunday is the final day of the pay period there is always lots to be done in the office and being it was the last day of the carnival in Lacey there was lots to be done on the carnival lot. Theresa is teaching me more and more things to do in the office. One day she taught me how to read the computer screen for each Fun Card (tickets are scanned on a card and then each ride or game scans the number of tickets needed) so that I can work in Customer Service. Yesterday she taught me how to count the ticket sellers cash box, to sort out accounts payable and to figure out the receipts for the days sales. I also helped with the timesheets again. I spent 4 1/2 hours in the office working last night. I heard her tell Rick "she is sure quick at what she does." Made me smile.

I have been praying that Ron and I can be examples of Christs love in us and through us. I didn't know if we were making a difference or not. Yet, God showed me we were. Working in the office last night, Theresa would swear then say she was sorry. She did this multiple times. I guess my not swearing is very visible and she sees that and is realizing how much she swears (a lot!) Thank you Lord for letting me see that I am making a difference, even if only a little one.

As I mentioned Ron worked a very long day yesterday and so we had a very short or long night depending on how you look at it. I came in about 11:00 p.m. after my shift was done and then read emails and a few of the blogs that I follow. I balanced my check book and did a few things to get ready to leave today for Puyallup. I went to sleep close to 1 a.m. Ron came in about 3:45 a.m. I woke up when he opened the door (I don't sleep well when he is not here). We talked for a little bit, he got something to eat and I tried to go back to sleep. About 4:30 my insides started shaking real bad and sweating profusely...signs that my blood sugar was dropping. I checked it and it was down to 45 ~ should be between 90 - 110. I quickly grabbed an orange juice, Ron made me a tuna sandwich and I ate two small tangerines. I began to feel a little better about 5:00...it took me till almost 6:00 to fall back asleep though. Ron went to sleep once I started to feel a little better. We were rudely awakened at about 9:15 this morning with lots of shouting, swearing and angry voices outside our bedroom window. We quickly got up and got dressed to see what was going on.

Well there was a major upheaval out in the bone yard. Seems the gamers were up really early this morning (they were done with their tear down by 8:30 p.m. last night) and left the bone yard before any of the rides people were up. They left water and electrical hoses out. Needless to say this was very upsetting to the ride people because at the safety meeting last Friday everyone was told that everyone in the bone yard had to help with pulling the electrical lines, cleaning up the water hoses, the water tree and doing a final walk through to make sure the area was clean before anyone left. This left only the ride people to do the clean up and tear down of the bone yard ~ about a two hour job. There was much grumbling going on. Finally Kenny, the rides supervisor, let it be known that Rick and Theresa had been notified of what had happened and that the situation would be addressed with the game people when they showed up in Puyallup. (Another reason we are glad to be away from the bone yard this week).

After the bone yard was tore down and the area cleaned up, Ron, Michael (the young man who rode with us from Kelso to Lacey and one of the ride people) and I left about 11:o0 a.m. and went and did laundry. Boy is that expensive here in Lacey. $2.75 a load to wash and 25 cents for six minutes to dry ~ we are used to paying $1 a load to wash and then a $1 a load to dry. We finished up there about 12:15 and then drove to Camping World to pick up an electrical extension cord and plug for us, a light cover for Albert (one of the ride people with a travel trailer with a broken lens cover) and a "gate" for one of the condos. (The gate is something to do with the plumbing and Ron has been called on to use his plumbing expertise to fix it ~ this time on company time ~ he will do that tomorrow during the day). We then stopped for lunch before heading to Winco to pick up some necessary groceries. We arrived at the fairgrounds about 4:30 p.m. Dropped Michael off at the bone yard, commented we were glad we didn't have to park there as it was very crowded, and drove over to where we are to camp. After getting checked in, we set up our motor home. It is so nice to have full hook ups. We will be using our regular dishes and silverware this week ~ no plastic or paper for us ~ yeah, saving money, and it is so nice to eat on glass plates and use real silverware. The weather was nice so we even had the door open for a little while enjoying the fresh air.

This week we will be doing different jobs as the fair hires their own ticket sellers. Ron is going to be doing ride set up and tear down as usual. Set up this week is Tuesday and Wednesday. Tear down will be Sunday evening/night after the Spring Fair closes. He will be working for Kenny this week in the rides department though we are not sure doing what. I will be doing one of two things: I will either be working in the ride office doing time sheets or working in the pizza food booth. I will find out tomorrow morning. I am supposed to call Theresa at 9:30 a.m. I suggested that I take the week off thinking I could talk someone into coming down here and picking me up so I could go back to Blaine for a visit...I was sure I could find one person that would let me crash on their couch. Theresa just laughed and said "if she was working, I was working." Oh well, nice try, right.

Praises this week ~

~ that we got more hours this week
~ that it was proven that Ron had not taken any money from a customer
~ that I am learning new and different things to do in the office
~ that we received our first mail package from home
~ that we were able to move to our new location without any problems
~ that we had good weather for the last few days of the carnival in Lacey
~ for the notes of encouragement from friends back home

Prayer requests ~

~ for the money still owed to us from three customers comes in
~ for us to do good at the new jobs we are assigned to this week
~ for us to continue to show God's love to others
~ for our automatic deposit to go through correctly (we were told our paychecks from last week were automatically deposited but they weren't - Mark the guy from the corporate office is supposed to get that fixed early this week)
~ for us to continue to enjoy what we are doing
~ and for safety next Monday as we drive to Wenatchee for the Apple Blossom Festival

I think that catches everyone up on what we have been doing this past week. I hope to be better about writing on my blog a couple of times a week instead of just once a week.

Until next time...we love and miss all of you.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter Everyone!

Happy Easter everyone!

Woke up this morning and spent time reading scripture with Ron. Thanks Charles for the service plan as that was our guide for reading this morning. He is Risen. He is Risen Indeed!

We have had a pretty quiet week this week. We moved to Lacey on Monday. Ron did set up of rides on Tuesday and Wednesday. Tuesday during the day I went grocery shopping with Diane, one of the game people and then in the evening we were able to use a company van to go do laundry. Wednesday afternoon we set up the ticket box. Set up for that includes washing all the windows inside and out, sweeping the floor, setting up the computers and getting ourselves organized. Thursday was a scheduled day off. In the morning we went for a walk. Found a Shucks so Ron bought some light bulbs for inside the motor home. We had five not working but now they all are ~ thanks Ron for being so handy. It rained all afternoon so we spent the day inside reading, checking emails and just plain relaxing. Ron did get asked to drive Richard, the mechanic, to the Napa Auto Parts store. Ron is one of a few who has his drivers license so he can drive a company van. Once he is approved by the company he will get paid for driving the company van. Plus then we will have access to a vehicle.

Friday we were supposed to start work at 1:00 but it was really windy and rainy so they postponed the start to 3:00. At 2:45 we got a call from Theresa that the carnival would not be opening at all due to the high winds. Another day to hunker down, do lots of reading and stay inside where it was warm and toasty. Saturday we opened the carnival at 12:00. It rained quite a bit with a few heavy down pours. At 5:45 Rick told me to close up my till and Ron closed his at 6:00...the end of another day of working for the carnival. We had between 25 to 50 customers. The rain didn't seem to bother the children but the parents looked a little worse for wear. One bad thing about yesterday is that we found out the heater does not work in the ticket box. It got mighty cold in there and by the end of our shift we were both freezing. After walking back to the motor home in the rain we got on dry clothes, had some coffee and hot chocolate and turned the furnace up for about half an hour. We finally thawed out. We spent the evening reading ~ we do a lot of reading.

Today the carnival opens at 1:00. I forgot to buy a ham for dinner today so we are having chicken & broccoli with creamy noodles and salad for lunch before we go into work. The recipe calls for tuna but I am using canned chicken instead. I am sure it will be tasty.

We have been asked by a couple of people why we can't go in the local mall (where the carnival is set up) or Applebees which is also here in the shopping center. We have been told that we are not to go into these places for a couple of reasons. One is due to the history of "bad carnies" that they are up to no good and only cause trouble. Theresa said it is also to avoid being accused of anything by the shop owners (remember bad carnies) and the fact that some of these guys get really dirty working on the rides and don't always do the best at cleaning up and this avoids the chance that they will get clothes/items dirty in the stores. We can understand where Rick & Theresa are coming from because we don't want to have any problems arise. It was a bummer though because when we pulled in Monday afternoon we talked about going to Applebees for dinner that night. On a good note though, it saved us probably $25 or so.

Praise & Prayer Requests:

Praise that we are getting into a comfortable routine.

Praise that we invited Michael to have lunch with us on Friday and when Ron prayed for our lunch at the end of the prayer when we said Amen, Michael did too. We know people are noticing that we are different (I know we are really different :) even Theresa apologized for swearing in front of me the other day.

Praise that we are learning our jobs and being given other things to do besides just sell tickets.

Prayer request ~ that the three checks we are waiting for will come in.

Prayer request ~ that I won't have too much homesickness this week. Last Friday and Sunday were difficult for me.

Prayer request ~ that we will be a shining light of Jesus to those we come into contact with.

That's all for today ~ hope everyone has a wonderful Easter!