Monday, August 13, 2007

The Iowa GOP Straw Poll & A Wedding

On Saturday August 11, we attended the wedding of Daniel Cox and Maggie Gilliland. Dan is the son of our Pastor and good friend Steve Cox. We've had the privilege of watching Dan grow into a fine young man, and Maggie is a sweet match for him. The wedding was held at the Nevada Baptist Church, which we attended for several years. We lived in Nevada when we first moved to Iowa in 1996 until 1999. Nevada is located about 8 miles east of Ames, where the straw poll was taking place on the same day. BTW, I thought it would take Dan at least a half hour to get into that car, but he was determined (other things to do??) and had all the Saran Wrap cut off in about 5 minutes!

For the past several months, I've been investigating the merits and claims of many of the presidential candidates. I've never gotten involved in a presidential election this early in the process before, but with the condition of our country right now I thought it was important to be as prospective as possible, instead of jumping on a bandwagon later in the game. The person elected in 2008 will have a HUGE task of repairing a severely fractured country. In my opinion, the divisions within our country now are as large as any we've faced since the Civil War.

The older I get, the more conservative I become. The liberals just continually raise taxes and throw (our) money at the problems. They also want to use (our) money to fund other detestable programs such as tax-funded abortions. When I see how much of my paycheck goes to the government and think about how much more it could be if say, Hillary were elected- I cringe!

After much investigation, I decided several months ago to support Mike Huckabee for President in 2008. I read an intro piece on him in World Magazine and became intrigued. I then searched the web for more info and read his position statements at and decided he stands for many of the things that I do. I went to a "Meet Mike" function in Mason City and heard him speak, shook his hand and asked him questions. He was very cordial and seemed interested in hearing what everyone had to say. He went through the room, looked every person in the eye and shook their hand- introducing himself and making small talk. I was very impressed with his demeanor.

I'm not going to say that I feel Mike Huckabee is perfect on every issue facing us. He supports the "Fair Tax" which is a national sales tax that would do away with the federal income tax and the IRS. He will have a difficult time implementing this. Mike also states that: "While there is value in the "No Child Left Behind" law's effort to set high national standards, states must be allowed to develop their own benchmarks." I feel that NCLB is unconstitutional. The constitution nowhere discusses education. This is a state function.

However, none of the candidates is perfect. They all have areas where their views don't align with mine. In my humble opinion, Mike Huckabee is the best candidate in a crowded field. I was proud to cast my straw poll vote for Mike on August 11. I hope his strong showing at the poll will vault him into the national consciousness as the race goes on.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Family Camp 5 at IRBC

We attended Family Camp at the Iowa Regular Baptist Camp again this year and had a great time. This was Sarabeth's first time at family camp and she really enjoyed herself. Up until about 6 weeks ago she had never even been in a pool, and now she is going off the diving board with no flotation devices. She also went for her initial Jet Ski ride, Zip Line ride, and drove the bumper boats by herself this past week.

It was a busy week with all the activities as well as chapel services, great food and fellowship with friends we've gotten to know over the 8 years we've been Family Camping at IRBC. We also met several new families that we hope to see again in the future.

Zip Line Ride at IRBC