Friday, January 23, 2015

Spa Day

What a day for the spa!!  It was wet & cold with a little snow thrown into the mix.  However that didn't deter nine (9) women (wives of wounded marines) from leaving Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio and driving to Fredericksburg.

We all met for breakfast at Woerner's Cafe then three of the women went shopping while the other five were pampered with either a manicure, pedicure or massage.

Happy Birthday Hallie
Lunch was complements of the Rathskeller. Everyone was talking at once about shopping, spa experience, places they had been deployed, etc.  We also had the privilege of celebrating Hallie Garza's birthday.  She told us her husband had signed her up to come and told her about it this morning.  Surprise!!

After lunch it was the "shoppers" turn to visit the spa while the others shopped.

Everyone agreed it was a much needed break. As one put it "Everyone Needs a Girl's Day Out!" They headed back home refreshed, ready to resume their care provider role and ready to come back to Fredericksburg with their families.

Of course these events don't happen without the generosity of the Fredericksburg community.  Our thanks to:  Rathskeller who donated lunch
                  The Spa at the Inn on Baron's Creek for special rates
                  Peyton Place Day Spa for discounted rates
                  Woerner's Cafe opened early

Thursday, January 22, 2015

January, 2015, Couple's Retreat

The setting was peaceful, relaxing & inviting as couples checked into the Old Mill Settlement for the weekend.  After getting settled, everyone met at the Cypress Room at Fredericksburg Inn & Suites for a light supper and "Get Acquainted Games" led by Chaplain Ginsburg and his wife Jenelle.

Friday Night Get Together
Some of Saturday Night Hosts
The next morning the chaplain demonstrated how to recognize pitfalls and how to deflect them.  After lunch at Mamacita's, the couples were free to explore Fredericksburg until dinner time.

Memorial Presbyterian Church provided a warm welcome and delicious dinner for everyone.  

Cutting Up
They also presented each couple with a gift bag containing hand made caps for the men and either a cap or scarf for the ladies.  All of the items had been prayed over while being made.  The guys got a kick out of trying on their spouse's gift.

Carlos & Martina Won Quilt
During dinner there were drawings for gifts which included among other things, gift cards, a prayer shawl donated by the Prayer Shawl Ministry at Fredericksburg United Methodist Church and a Quilt donated by the One Quilt Place Quilt Shop.

T.J.'s versionn of Lionel Richie 

T.J. Smith entertained everyone after dinner.  He had people laughing until tears.  Everyone loved him!!  T.J. donated his time and talent to these brave warriors and their spouses.

Angel & John Arroyo

Sunday morning worship started with songs and prayers.  Lt. John Arroyo, a survivor of the April 2nd shooting at Fort Hood, gave his testimony.  He took us through the shooting and the miracles that have occurred since he was shot.  His is an amazing true story of what GOD can do.

Following worship the chaplain covered one more chapter in the "Fearless Marriage".

As with all Wounded Warrior at Nebo events, many volunteers and donations were involved.  We thank you all for your continued support and help!

Old Mill Settlement donated cabins for couples
Clear River Pecan Co. donated box lunches
South Church donated breakfast burritos
Mamacitas donated Saturday lunch
Memorial Presbyterian Church donated Saturday dinner and Caps/Scarves
Alan and Pat Spousta greeted and checked guests into their quarters
Charles Quindry greeted and checked guests into their quarters
Bonnie Grimmer greeted and served couples Friday night
Lee and Nancy Chiles greeted and served couples Friday night
Fbg. United Methodist Church Prayer Shawl Ministry donated payer shawl
One Quilt Place quilt shop donated quilt
Buzz White donated Pecans
Ace Hardware donated Pizza Stone Kit

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Sunday, December 28, 2014

Family Retreat (December 5-7)

The weather was perfect for a parade!! But I'm getting ahead of myself.  We try to make the December R&R or Retreat a family affair.  Part of the reason is the lighted parade in Fredericksburg is fun and beautiful and main street after dark looks like a Dickens Village.  Last year it was literally freezing.  Not so this year.  It was cool but almost no wind so it was great being outside.  Zion Lutheran Church hosted the families  on Friday night with a delicious meal prior to the parade.  In addition, they set up chairs on the street so the families would have a birds eye view of the parade.

Lisa telling Christmas Story

Saturday morning the couples met with Chaplain Ginsburg for some counseling.  While parents were "in class" the children were taken to the Fredericksburg United Methodist Church (FUMC) where Lisa Davis told them the story of Christ's birth.

Donna demonstrating making a tree

Then Donna Lafferty and Louise Murphy, local artists, taught the children how to paint with water color and make Christmas cards for their parents. After completing the cards, Joel Griffin, FUMC Youth Director, and some of the youth served snacks and led games that ran off some of that kid energy.

Goofy Photo

Families were reunited for lunch at West End Pizza and a free afternoon to explore the town, ice skate, nap, etc.

Saturday evening everyone gathered at the First Baptist Church for "Italian Night" dinner and Sunshine the Clown.  Kids young & old loved her.  The way she involves the children in her magic tricks is great!! Prior to dinner the children presented their works of art to their parents.  It was a nice surprise for mom and dad.
Sunshine's Arrival
Admiring Their Child's Art Work

Admiring Their Childrens Art Work 
The success of this retreat and all of the events organized by the Wounded Warriors at Nebo is dependent on the generosity of the Fredericksburg community.  It takes many volunteers and donations to bring everything together. Many Thank You's go to the following food providers, kitchen help, volunteers, merchants who discounted rates, other donors.  
Zion Lutheran Church                              Fredericksburg United Methodist Church
First Baptist Church                                 Donna Lafferty
Louise Murphy                                         Joel Griffin
Will Cooke                                               Esten Cooke
Sadie Eidson                                            Sloan Ball
Clear River Pecan Company                    In on Baron's Creek
West End Pizza

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Veterans Healing Through Connection - FREE to the Military

Several months ago the Caron Foundation reached out to us asking if we would be interested in partnering with them.  They have launched a couples counseling program. It's an intense three days of group therapy.  We agreed to look into the possibility and let them know.

Caron is based in Pennsylvania and have been doing drug and alcohol rehabilitation for 60 years. They have a really good reputation. Check out their website (  The literature they left us sounded like their program would be exactly what we have been wanting.  Something to help the wounded warriors on a deeper level.  We asked a local Christian therapist to look into it and give us her opinion.  She also attended the December retreat in Leaky as an observer.  In addition, we had two couples (both retired military) attend incognito to evaluate the counseling from a recipients prospective.  They all came back with very positive reports.  Both couples agreed that it was intense but very effective.  They recommended we go forward.  The therapist said there were many "AHA Moments" for the participants.  She also said it looked like what we have been wanting to do.

So, we will be working out details with Caron regarding what "partnering" looks like.  In the mean time they have two weekends already scheduled.  If you are interested contact Amy Durham at (484)345-2619/ or visit

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Cards R Fun

Last Tuesday Lisa brought two Christmas cards for the class to make.  The first one required sponging and embossing (we got to play with the heat gun).  The really fun thing about this card is that everyone could do their own thing with color and shape of hills.  One of the "first timers" was Ben from Fort Hood.  He wandered into the craft room and after some encouragement joined us. Jackie helped him get started and Paula, who joins us regularly, helped with tips along the way.  It's official - men use darker, bolder colors than women.

Ben, Jackie, Paula


The second card went together very quickly.  Lisa had all the parts pre-cut so it was basically assemble, stamp and glue. That was a good thing since the first one took most of the class time.
Alice, Ben Jackie, Paula Lisa, Angelia

All in all we had a good time (as usual) and Ben assured us he would be back in January!

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

R&R in Fredericksburg

This past weekend 11 wounded warriors and their families/caregiver came to Fredericksburg for a much needed break from the "daily grind".  With the chaplain's family there were a total of 38 guests. The weekend started with dinner and bingo Friday night at the Fredericksburg United Methodist Church.

An amazing thing happened after dinner-the teenagers volunteered to do the dishes!! After bingo everyone left for their weekend housing.  There were no other planned activities so this was truly a time to really relax. Entrance fee for the Antique Show and Fritztown Cinema were waived for our Guests.

Some of the feedback includes:
  • "We slept in, had a late breakfast and found some treasures at the Antique Show."
  • "... It was so peaceful. No time restrictions, a warm room, no beds to make-it was delightful...We drove the farm roads. ..."
  • "It was a blessing to be at the R&R!"
  • "It's the first time in 2 years we have been able to get away.  Didn't expect anything like this."
This wouldn't happen without our volunteers and donations.  Many Thank You's go to the following people who supported this event as food providers, kitchen help, lodging and other donations:
John & Sandy Doudna             Allen & Pat Spousta
Michelle Segner                       Gwen Kortzic
Linda Treibs                             Linda Graham
Kay Telle                                 Peggy Benson
Betty Phillips                           Donna Cannon
Liz Bispo                                 Stacy & Steven York
Larissa Halford                       Vedena Brown
Jan Canfield                            Fritztown Movie Theater
Texas Hill Country Antique Show
Country Inn Cottages
Sunday House Inn & Suites
South Church                          Murphy’s Guest House
White Guest House                 Pylate B&B
Benson B&B                           McCurdy Cabin
Curtis Woodard                       CC Gibbons
Clear River Pecan Company

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

3rd Quarter 2014 Newsletter Available

Just a reminder that you can download the current newsletter.  Look for "Newlsletter" in the column to the right.  Who knows, you might see your picture in it. Enjoy!!