All posts by Teri Maxwell

More Changes

Joseph and Elissa have moved! Not very far really, but not like when they only lived a mile from us. With the birth of Caleb, they felt they outgrew their starter house and began looking for a bigger one. They decided to settle in Kansas City, closer to their church.

After finding their new house, they put their old house on the market. It sold right away.

Joseph and Elissa are only about fifteen minutes away from Jesse and Anna Patrice. Both couples go to the same church.

We know we will miss having Joseph and Elissa so close, but we are happy that found a home they are delighted with. They said they plan to make it back regularly for family Sunday lunches.

Steve helping Joseph paint the house before it went on the market
Cleaning out the garden before the house closed

“Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it:
except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain” (Psalm 127:1).

Children Reading the Bible

“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path”
(Psalm 119:105).

This summer Anna was helping us do some clearing out in our attic and discovered a couple of treasures—two large print, children’s Bibles that were a couple of our children’s first Bibles. They show much wear from loving use.

When our children could read on their own, we wanted each to have his own Bible and read it daily. We chose an inexpensive, hard-backed, large print Bible for their first Bibles. They were not old enough to care for a leather Bible.

Over time, by being responsible and diligent in their personal Bible reading, they each earned a nice, leather Bible.

Trusting in Jesus,
Teri

“As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word,
that ye may grow thereby” (1 Peter 2:2).

Maxwell Cozy Coupe Days, Second Generation

John and Joseph, in the 1990s. Getting a ticket looks like it was pretty stressful for John so he sought some comfort.

Our children had many happy hours in creative play. They wore out several cozy coupes and there were more than a few tickets written.

The children got behind the wheel at an early age. Even if there were iPads and computer games then, we still would have chosen this sort of play.

John pushing Anna

On a walk, Steve and I saw a cozy coupe out for the trash some time ago. It still looked serviceable so it came home. On our Labor Day picnic, we brought it out. It was so cute to see Joseph and John’s children reenacting the type of play their dads played years earlier.

Kyle needing some serious help from cousin Axton. The push was much easier once Kyle kept his feet off the ground.

“We will not hide them from their children,
shewing to the generation to come
the praises of the LORD, and his strength,
and his wonderful works that he hath done”
(Psalm 78:4
).

Hiking Colorado’s Highest Mountain

Since Steve and my Colorado vacation was last minute, we didn’t have the training time that we had other summers to prepare us for hiking 14,000 foot peaks. We didn’t have any real conditioning preparation time on this short notice. We thought we would at least try one and turn back if we couldn’t make it. 

We chose Mt. Elbert, even though it is Colorado’s highest mountain, since it was only an hour from our cabin, a class 1 (on a scale of 1-4 with 1 being the easiest) climb, and a reasonable round trip distance—9.5 miles. It was also the first 14er hike I ever did 8 years ago. We thought we had good potential to summit.

We started our hike at 5:00 a.m. in the dark using headlamps. I love starting in the dark and then seeing the forest begin to be light as the sun rises. 

The first 1.5 miles was pretty tame, but then it took off from there. We quickly felt our lack of training! There were some parts still in the tree line that were quite steep—zapping our strength. Switchbacks definitely make it easier.

We summited about 10 a.m., ate lunch there, took photos, and enjoyed the vast beauty of God’s creation that only the top of a 14er provides in its views. Then we started our 4.5 hour trek back down. Most of the other hikers on the mountain hiked faster than we did both up and down, but they were a lot younger too!

Steve and Teri on Mt. Elbert

This hike, the Lord gave us two different great, extended conversations about spiritual things with other hikers as we went down.

Steve and I were both exhausted when we still had two miles of the downhill to go, but one step at a time, we made it back to the trailhead. We were blessed to have cloud cover for those last two miles and to get back to our vehicle before the storm hit. As we got in the van, it began to rain.

We are grateful to the Lord for the health that allows us to hike a 14er, especially considering Steve’s coronary artery disease, angina, and stents last year. He didn’t have any hint of angina during our hikes indicating the diet is working well. We don’t take for granted our hiking together, knowing that there will come a time when we can no longer do it, and that each hike might be our last. 

Trusting in Jesus,
Teri

“His foundation is in the holy mountains” (Psalm 87:1). 

Changes for the Maxwells

With the Covid shutdowns in March, our retirement home church was one of the first shutdowns to happen. Steve had been feeling for a few months that it was time for our family to be back in a “normal” church. However, it would have been extremely hard to leave those who were currently part of the church. Steve didn’t know how it would ever work, and then, suddenly, we weren’t allowed to have church at the retirement home anymore.

The church we have settled into is only five minutes from our home. For many years we commuted to Kansas City at least 30 minutes to church and sometimes closer to 40 since the church changed locations a couple of times.

Our heart’s desire has been to have a local church, one we can invite people to. And we did that with our retirement home church which was local, except that people didn’t feel comfortable going to it. Now our church is a known church right in our own town. It is easy to invite friends to it.

We already knew many people in the church and have met new friends. The preaching is outstanding. It is again a new season for our family after 18 years of having a nursing home or retirement home church.

For our married children who were with us at the retirement home church, Nathan and Melanie are currently attending the same church we are. Christopher and Anna Marie need to stay home because of Anna Marie’s lack of immunity because of her chemo.

We enjoy our family Sunday lunches at 1:00. That gives everyone time for their church, getting home, us getting lunch prepared, and them getting to our house. Joseph and Jesse are driving from Kansas City so that’s almost an hour after their church lets out.

“Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it:
except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain”
(Psalm 127:1).

Hike on Pike’s Peak

Steve and I decided a good training hike for a possible 14er our second week in Colorado would be to hike a ways up Pike’s Peak, (on the Barr trail) while we were staying in Colorado Springs the first week. Pike’s Peak is a 26 mile round trip 14er, not something we would be capable of doing in a day.

We arrived at the trailhead at 4:30 a.m. so we hiked the first 1.5 hours in the dark using headlamps. That gave us beautiful views of the lights of Colorado Springs. It also gave us quite a surprise at about 2 miles up.

Steve and Teri Maxwell

There we reached a place where we had to climb some steep steps. They were so steep, we had to lean forward and use our hands for support for the next step, much like climbing a ladder. After about ten or twelve of those steps, thinking we must be about done with them, we looked up, since it was just getting to be a bit light, only to see the steps go on and on and on. We both knew we couldn’t make it up them. So we began to slowly clamber back down.

This is a view down the steps.

About that time, a very fit young man passed us going up the steps. In our conversation with him, we discovered we had made a wrong turn in the dark (just a few feet back), left the Barr trail that goes to Pike’s Peak, and had gotten on the Manitou Incline. The Manitou Incline is a series of 2,744 steps that gain 2,000 feet elevation in a little less than a mile.

We backtracked and found the trail again. We were impressed as we hiked on to find out that some people (obviously quite fit) climb the Manitou Incline and then run down the Barr trail. We met several of them as we continued our hike.

At about 2.5 miles up the trail, we stopped to talk to some hikers who were taking a break. When we picked up our hike, we hadn’t realized we were at a junction and ended up heading the wrong direction for about a half mile before discovering our mistake.

We hoped to make it to the Pike’s Peak base camp, which is about 6.5 miles up the trail, but decided with the extra mileage of our wrong turn and how long we had been hiking, that we should turn around at the 5 mile marker.

We were happy we did. Going down, the temperatures quickly rose to close to 90, and for the last 3 miles we were hotter than we have ever been on a Colorado hike. In the end, we clocked 12.25 miles with 2600 feet elevation gain. From start to finish, it took us 6.5 hours.

Trusting in Jesus,
Teri

“And the heavens shall declare his righteousness:
for God is judge himself. Selah” (Psalm 50:6).