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He is Risen!

March 26, 2016 | By | No Comments

Sharing a repost from one of our family’s most treasured Easter memories — Over a decade ago now in 2005, we took a trip with all of the children to the Grand Canyon for Sunrise Service on Easter Sunday. At the time, since they were small, I used pseudonyms for each child. Hannah was the Dreamer; John was the Dude; Helena was the Diva; Sarah was the Dancer; and James was Baby Boo. Happy Easter and God’s richest blessings to each of you and your families!

He is risen! He is risen indeed!

The alarm went off at 3 AM. Could we manage to rouse five tired children and make it to the sunrise service at the Grand Canyon 90 miles north? Having come this far on our westward adventure, we wanted to try. But the Penta-Posse got themselves up, into the ski clothes we’d laid out to combat the cold, and beat me into the truck. (They may have been eased along by the chocolate and jelly beans the easter bunny left. . .)

In fact, they were in such high spirits that they wanted our progress up Arizona Rt. 180 through the Coconino Forest to turn into a race with the lone hatchback we encountered along the way in the dark. As the little car left us in his wake (Dad, c’mon, let’s go!!) Jack told the posse that we would let the hatchback “hit the cow” for us and tried to refocus their attention on seeing who could guess how low the temperature would go. The Dreamer “won” when the thermometer dropped to 17 degrees. I worried about the wind-chill on the canyon rim. Then, we crested a hill and came up suddenly on the hatchback, which was stopped dead in front of us as a herd of six or seven deer charged acrosss the road.

The mountains to our right, capped in snow, glowed with the reflected light of a full moon. We reached the canyon at 5 AM just as the faintest light began breaching the eastern rim. We parked along the shoulder near Mather Point; the Dancer had fallen asleep again and didn’t want to venture into the cold — we wrapped her in a blanket and joined the others who were streaming in the direction of haunting music playing on a loudspeaker at the outlook. We were early enough to be among the first there; eventually around 1600 people arrived, filling up the platform, the stairs to the outlook, and lining the rim looking out over Mather Point.

The Dreamer, the Dude and the Diva scrambled up to a perch atop a large boulder, while Jack and I settled in to lower seats along a rocky wall with the Dancer and Boo. By now, a faint pink light was spreading along the horizon. We had made it! My eyes filled with tears as my apprehension and tension from the press to get there was replaced with a sense of awe at the majesty in front of me.

Then the cold started to seep in. The Dancer started to cry. She settled in to Jack’s lap and buried her face in his chest. A little later, the Dreamer came down to take her so that they could warm each other. Boo slept on.

Half an hour left until the service and now the light was spreading and we could see the growing crowd around us more clearly. My worst fears about the wind-chill never materialized, but it was very cold. A stranger came over to the Dancer and the Dreamer, and wrapped them in a blanket. “Here,” he said, “you look cold. This is an extra.” It wasn’t an extra. We were among friends.

He is risen. He is risen indeed.

The service started and Boo began to cry. Then he settled quickly into my shoulder. . . The sun broke over the northeastern rim with a brilliant glow, revealing the colors of the canyon in all their glory. Red, green, pink, orange. Deep clefts of darkness and shadow. The Colorado silently running in dizzying depths below. A raw wood cross on the edge appeared to hang in the air, silhouetted with the vast expanse of the canyon behind.

Christ, the Lord, is risen today, Alleluia!

Sons of men and angels say, Alleluia!

Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!

Sing, ye heavens, and earth, reply, Alleluia!

Hail, the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia!

Praise to Thee by both be given, Alleluia!

Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia!

Hail, the resurrection day, Alleluia Jesus Christ is risen today, Alleluia!

Our triumphant holy day, Alleluia!

Who did once upon the cross, Alleluia!

Suffer to redeem our loss. Alleluia!

Afterward, the Dude and I stood and looked over the canyon. “This is awesome,” he said.

He is risen. He is risen, indeed.


Originally published on March 28th, 2005.

Please Support Hannah’s Mission Trip to the DR

May 31, 2008 | By | No Comments

me painting (2).jpg

Hannah painting in Peru, 2007

Dear Family,

Hi! It’s the end of my first year at Yorktown High School and I am planning to join my church’s mission trip to the Dominican Republic this summer. Last year I had the amazing experience of witnessing to Peruvians in the Callao Festival, Lima, Peru. I was able to watch as thousands were brought to Christ. With memories of last year dancing in my mind I can only dream of how awesome this year’s mission is going to be.


This year I want to be an asset to my team and need your help getting me there. I’m raising the money needed to devote to the mission trip which will be from July 23-30. Support goes toward food, logistics, rooming, and baseball equipment (for ministry to younger children in the Dominican Republic). Your support would mean so much to me this year, helping me reach my goal of $1,600. Even the smallest donation can make all the difference. If you’d like to send support online, you can do that at

Direct link for donations: HERE

Over the last year I’ve grown closer to Jesus and want to extend that feeling to others through ministry. I’ve been taking my friends to church and spreading God’s word at school and in my sports activities. My electives also include art as a medium I hope to expand in as a ministry tool. This year I’ll be joining the Children’s Ministry team, and the General Missions team, where I will be able to interact with all the groups and see all the various ways the Gospel can be spread. Other teams on the mission include: Drama team, Choir, Baseball, Clowns, and Construction.


Last year I was on the construction team, but this year I think I’m better suited for Children’s Ministry. Last year the Construction team was delayed by circumstances and I was able to join with other teams and street evangelize. I had the opportunity to witness to Special Needs kids at a children’s school where we washed the kids’ feet, and once we were able to start construction, I was able to help paint the alleyway of the woman’s house we were working on.

Your support this year would mean the world to me and thank you so much for whatever you can give! The smallest donation counts. If you don’t want to donate online, any checks you donate need to be made out to Mclean Bible Church, Dominican Republic Mission; and Hannah Yoest needs to be written in the left hand corner. (The mailing address is: P.O. Box 9300 McLean, VA 22102)

Thank You so much for your help and love, please keep me in your prayers!

Love and Thanks,


Work and Family: One Size Does Not Fit All

December 23, 2006 | By | No Comments

No ‘cookie-cutter’ solutions: Family expert Charmaine Yoest says creativity, flexibility are keys to resolving work/family issues

Charmaine Yoest acknowledges that creative solutions to juggling work and family are never easy. “That’s part of why I study it as an issue.”

By Elizabeth Kiem [from May 14, 2004]

Charmaine Yoest, a doctoral candidate in U.Va.’s Woodrow Wilson Department of Politics, is an up-and-coming young expert on family policy issues.


Charmaine Yoest

Photo by Andrew Shurtleff By normal counts, her 10 years at the University have been hyper-productive: Her papers on the subject are prolific, as are her media appearances, congressional testimonies and academic presentations. She has written a book on working mothers and is completing a second on parental leave policies.

But Yoest’s career must be viewed in the context of a not-so-typical doctoral student’s family life — she is the 39-year-old mother of five children, ranging from age 10 to infancy.

“I hope it’s inspirational to some,” she said of her ability to pursue her studies and career even with a full capacity mini-van. “Obviously I couldn’t do what I’ve done unless my husband was willing to live a nontraditional life as well.”

Yoest acknowledges that her domestic situation, with close family near by to step into the child-care breach and a husband willing to reduce his workload significantly to help raise children, has been unusually conducive to her career. Nonetheless, she would like to see more families adopt a “nontraditional lifestyle” to accommodate childrearing and professional equality among the parents.

There is such an emphasis on work and family that sometimes the family gets lost because people are so focused on ‘how can we facilitate work? she said.

A regular on the political talk-shows, Yoest is careful with her words, aware of just how politicized the debate has become. She is quick to emphasize that her pro-family stance in no way negates her advocacy for women to pursue careers and advanced education, as she has done. The mission, she says, is to find creative ways to do both — and women require the participation of spouses and employers to do so.

Continue reading at the jump.


Thank you (foot)notes:

Originially published by UVA Insider May 2004.

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Merry Christmas

December 19, 2006 | By | One Comment


Merry Christmas to you and yours,

from Your Business Blogger, Charmaine and the Penta-Posse

If you would like to be added to our good-guy Christmas Card list please email us.

Read about London’s John Calcott Horsley and the business of the first Christmas card at the jump. And the original meaning of “merry.”

Read More

06 Nov



Steele for Senator and the Roe Effect

November 6, 2006 | By | 3 Comments


After an evening of lit drops, the Penta-Posse poses for their candidate, Michael Steele for Senator for Maryland.

Research shows that a bumper sticker has an in-kind equivalent value of $250 to the political candidate. Smart campaigners will also put the bumper sticker on the driver’s side front bumper to greet on-coming traffic.

The Roe-Effect will take effect sooner or later.

Lord willing, tomorrow.


The Steele Family

From Steele’s web site, His Agenda for Economic Empowerment,

Economic empowerment creates opportunities poverty will never let you see. Whether you are an employee looking for a better job, or a business owner working to expand your company, you must be empowered to turn your hopes into action, and turn opportunity into ownership. The Steele Agenda for Economic Empowerment contains policies devoted to increasing homeownership, business ownership, and the prosperity of Maryland families.


Vandalized Stop Sign

in the Nuclear-Free Hippie Zone

Tacoma Park, Maryland

Steele has an uphill battle in the Commie counties close to DC and Baltimore.

Maryland is a Blue State full of Red Diaper babies.

Save for mine.

More from the Steele website,

Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele was the first African-American ever elected to statewide office in Maryland. Michael made history once again in October 2005, when he announced his candidacy for the state’s open seat in the United States Senate.

Since taking office as Lieutenant Governor with Governor Robert Ehrlich in 2003, Michael has produced real solutions to the real problems facing Marylanders. The Lt. Governor has lead the fight to improve access to better-performing schools; worked alongside law enforcement officials to reduce crime and secure communities; strengthened the state’s minority business program to foster greater entrepreneurship; and worked with Maryland conservationists to protect the environment for future generations.

Music Camp in the Baltimore Washington Corridor

July 7, 2006 | By | One Comment


The Diva on Piano The Baptist Convention of Baltimore and Delware is sponsoring a music camp. Starts this Sunday and spaces are filling up.

Cost $99 per child — We’ll be sending our Penta-Posse.

Call Bryan at 410 -dot- 695 -dot- 5374 to reserve a spot. Reservations can also be made at the door at First Baptist Church in Laurel, Maryland. Or email Bryan at BPatrick AT FirstBaptistLaurel dot org

Or email me.


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Thank you (foot)notes:

Cross posted at Jack Yoest.

Raise Up A Son

May 31, 2006 | By | No Comments

Cross Post from Jack Yoest and Frugal.


Nearing the half million mark Your Business Blogger has two bar bets that I always win:

1) I’ve been fired from more jobs than you, and

2) I’ve got more miles than you. On my car, that is.

And the key to longevity is routine maintenance. And the key to maintenance is a competent mechanic.


The Dude pulling maintenance I’ve retained The Dude for the basics. And sometimes more.

He works well with little management supervision.

Call for rates.


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Thank you (foot)notes:

Full Disclosure: The Dude is eleven and employment could run afoul of labor laws in your state. Check local listings before asking for a quote.

Savage Places Second in the Cal Ripken Tournament

April 3, 2006 | By | No Comments

Cross post from Jack Yoest with Savage.


Savage Spirit, Maryland

Championship First Runner-Up

Cal Ripken, Opening Day Tournament

2006, 11u, years old and under

Vince Lombardi once said, “The Green Bay Packers never lost a football game. They just ran out of time.”

Coach Scott Grebenstein must be saying the same thing. Running out of time and innings in the final championship game Sunday afternoon with the Maryland Cardinals. Score: Savage behind Cardinals, 11 to 12, to place second.

He led the Savage Spirit baseball team this weekend on a series of wins and a “slaughter rule” upset over the Maryland Mud Hens.

It started Friday nite. Your Business Blogger packed up Charmaine and the Penta-Posse into the monster SUV for two nites in Aberdeen, Maryland. Home of the Cal Ripken Stadium complex. Opening Day Tournaments.

We saw old friends from Charlottesville baseball allstar days. Charmaine teared up. Not me. Although it was windy andblowingdustgetsinyoureyesandwateruptogetdustout.

(Hint: moving 11 times in 15 years of marriage is too many good-bys. Too many hellos.)

Anyway. The team played well. The Dude played well.


The Dude pitching


Wind up


Delivery: 3 up, 3 down


The Dude can hit The Dude got his first over the fence home run on Sunday.

Congratulations Savage Spirit on a great season’s opener!


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Thank you (foot)notes:


Cal Ripken Baseball

24 Dec



Unto Us a Child is Born

December 24, 2005 | By | 5 Comments


“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given:

and the government shall be upon his shoulder:

and his name shall be called

Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”


* * *

My mother is the oldest of seven children and several of my aunts and uncles leave near my grandmother, so when we are able to visit for Christmas, we have a huge family gathering. The church they all attend has an annual live Nativity Scene that we love participating in. Here’s the wide shot — this year, Jack and I got to be Mary and Joseph, while the girls were angels, the Dude was a shepherd, and the Wise Men on the left include two cousins and my uncle.



The Dude was thrilled — the donkey made an aromatic contribution to the evening. . .


Baby Boo wanted to be an angel, too and kept saying, “I dressed, I dressed” . . . but as you can see, he drew the line at the halo. . .and the posing thing? Forget it!

Important note: We are posting from my uncle’s house, scamming off his wireless — he said to be sure and mention that this post is coming to you courtesy of a Yellow Dog Democrat! He posted today his Top Ten Christmas Memories. . .