It was a snowy day in mid-December. This was nothing new for Northern New York, it would be odd if it were December and there wasn’t at least a foot of snow on the ground. We drove off in a very stuffed black SUV and an 18-month-old Vincent James. We were headed to Texas. Brian was scheduled to go to MD the following month for a 4-month training. While he was away, Vincent and I planned to stay in Texas so we could visit family and enjoy the warmth. I had no idea we would return to visit 9 years later. But we did.
When we decided to make the east coast our destination for our big trip, we knew Northern New York would be a stop on the trip. Not only did we want to explore and spend time with our friends in the area, we also wanted to serve our church community from the past.
When we arrived we were greeted by some very excited kiddos and pizza! They knew we’d had a long drive and they wanted to have dinner prepared for us. How awesome is that?
Sarah and Brian offered to let us stay in their driveway during our stay. They are equipped with the proper electricity plugs for our trailer and a nice, flat driveway. Their hospitality was very much appreciated.
We spent the next day serving by cleaning the church.
After cleaning the church we headed into Watertown to show the kids around. We moved away before Kenniston was born, so none of the kids have any memories there. It was neat, however, to show Vincent the hospital he was born in. Well, at least I thought it was neat…
We didn’t take too much time in Watertown. North Country Fellowship had a fall festival planned for that evening and we wanted to attend the festivities. Natalie, the 12-year-old daughter of one of our friends, had planned an entire family fall festival for the church.
Aside from the games, Natalie also planned for a bonfire.
The bonfire was used to cook hot dogs…
And s’mores, of course!
After leaving the festival, Mike and Laura, the pastor and his wife, invited us over to wash laundry and shower in their home. We have been thankful to know their family over the years. They have been incredible friends and their family has been a positive example, not only to us, but to many over the years. Before leaving, Laura offered to wash our laundry for us. Can I just tell you how thankful I am??
While we were at the festival Brian was asked to play drums at church the next morning. He, of course, said yes.
While at church we were given bags and bags of SOCKS!!! The members of the church collected socks to donate to our sock drive for the homeless of Nashville! What a complete blessing that will be for the Bridge Bunch!
We are extremely grateful for the generosity of the people at North Country Fellowship, though we weren’t surprised. They have always been amazing, which is one of the reasons we went back to Northern New York!
That evening we enjoyed a dinner of popcorn and Stewart’s ice cream (when in NY…) with some old friends. We met Len and Diana the year before we left Fort Drum. Our friendship grew over the years thanks to social media (hooray for Facebook!). Our kids became instant friends and we were thankful for long conversations and growing friendship. In addition to opening up their home, they also washed our laundry. These are some good friends!
The following day we spent time just hanging out around the Fort Drum area. One of my favorite places in the area is Burrville apple cider mill. They fresh press their apple cider several days a week and they make and sell the most amazing doughnuts. You know we had to taste some of both!
Ruby checking out the pile of remnants of apples after being pressed.
Jack enjoying his (gluten free) fudge. yummy stuff!
Behind the mill is a beautiful water fall. You can’t visit the mill with out photographing it. I am pretty sure that is a law. Or something.
Nine years ago we left Fort Drum New York and headed to Texas to prepare for our next military move. I longed for warmer weather, not knowing I’d miss the beautiful northern region of NY. I am so glad we came back and visited, this place will always be special to our family.