Monday, November 15, 2010

Polk County Family Week

For those of you who may not know, Polk County is in and around the Tampa area of Florida. There lives a dynamite woman named Lori Waters who is has organized a Family Week for the fourth straight year. She has gathered wonderful people on her board who have created something every community should have:  A Family Week! 

Lori is active in the community as a homebuilder and has built 150 homes!  Her present home is the culmination of all the wonderful details that most people don't think of in a home and her expertise shows in her abilities to organize family events that people don't often think of either. Just look at the fun events every day that families can participate in all week!

Besides being a terrific talent at figuring out what would attract families (including free stuff) you'll see that is also a powerful force in getting sponsors for this great idea and in being a magnet for helpers who know how to make things happen. If you want to know what a powerhouse looks like, see the picture below! 

Here are a few details from her house for those who are into home design.  The details came out of her mind!

The center door leads to a huge pantry which includes homemade jam and and canned chicken and even hamburger! Sound familiar to you Eyres? (not the homemade stuff but the door). 

Look at the detail on this fun sink! 

And inviting game room: 

Back to Family Week! The theme of their week was "Strong Families Build Strong Communities". We loved that and had the nice opportunity to speak to families at two different churches.  First at the Beymer Methodist Church in Winter Haven and then at the Highland Park Church on the Nazerene.

In the process, we met this wonderful mother who runs a pre-school for 130 children at the Methodist Church who, of all things has seen us on Oprah all those years ago, had bought all our books since then and loved the thought that even though she wasn't perfect she had really raised her children deliberately with ideas she had thought out and embraced as she raised her children!  The girls will love hearing that as we are contemplating just how to use that word in our future thoughts about mothering!

As life goes, Lori had just had surgery on her knee and was hiding her crutches and her wonderful husband Glen, who is a Mormon bishop had just missed the bottom step while carrying a huge TV downstairs and wrenched his right knee and mangled his right foot (don't worry he saved the TV)!  He was on a walker!  They were quite a pair who you would never guess were invalids from this picture!

Some people are truly amazing and these two on the left are some of them! I came away thinking that I needed to be a better person!  Their spirit of goodness and generosity permeated everyone we church and at the family week meetings. Besides hosting us for the night they had offered a place to sleep..and a lovely breakfast for neighbors across the street who were moving the next day.  Besides raising four beautiful children of their own they provided a home for a niece and her daughter who were in need.  We also met several converts to the church who had listened to "the discussions" in the warmth of their very comfortable home!

They even offered to "babysit" a car for a neighbor who didn't have room in his garage! Gosh, somebody's got to do it! Glen didn't fit in this car (he's 6'9")  Dad could fit in it just fine!  It's a Ford GT???  I'm lucky if I know what kind of car I'm driving but Dad and I were pretty impressed! 

I'm being a little tongue-in-cheek about the car but really, I am going to be a better person after being in Polk County for Family Week along with some of our new favorite people, Lori and Glen Waters and friends! Hooray for Strong Families!

1 comment:

Jonah and Aja said...

wwwwwwwwwwwwwow. mom, the shiny suit and the ford gt all in the same photo.