The Portugal Years: Year Four – Furlough; It May Not Mean What You Think It Means

Harry's sister's wedding with her two nieces, Katy and Bethy.
Harry’s sister’s wedding with her two nieces, Katy and Bethy.

There is a persistent myth that when people come to the states on furlough that it is for them to rest from their labor. Nothing could be less true. We were always more busy and rushed when we were in the states than when we were in Portugal. Of course, we arrived in the midst of wedding prep for my sister-in-law, and didn’t slow down for the summer. A lot of what we did was visit people who supported our work in Portugal.

Shortly after the wedding, Harry, Elisabeth and I paid our respects to our missions organization traveling upstate New York to Schroon Lake (near Saratoga). Jack Wyrtzen founded this conference and camp facility. He and his wife were delightful people, and it was always fun when Jack was around.

wol jack marge

bethy wol
Bethy at Word of Life

When we got back to Pennsylvania, there was a to-do list. My mother-in-law’s family lived upstate Pennsylvania, and every year there were family reunions – yes, multiple reunions. That was a sad year for Harry’s mother; her mother passed away, and one of the trips up was for the funeral.

A family who supported our work invited us to spend a week at their cabin on Penobscot Bay in Maine. It was August, and we were wearing  jackets and light coats. You’ll see in one photo that we had a fire in the fireplace. That was the norm. If there had been a beach, we probably would not have been out swimming. While we were there, Grandpa wanted to take Bethy to the fair. She wasn’t sure about the calf, but she did love her some cotton candy. And she rode the Ferris Wheel. My father-in-law took me out with the family for some lobster love. While we were there, Bethy turned one year old. We celebrated with a chocolate cake! Of course. She needed early orientation or who knows what might have happened?  While we were there, Bethy took her first steps.

vacation Penob

vaca 2

vaca 3

first birthday

Of course, when we got back to Pennsylvania, Bethy had another party with my side of the family, including my sweet nephew, James, in attendance. second birthday party

Bethy’s Aunt Nancy spent time with us, too. In the next photo she is giving her ice cream. One can’t properly be a Price if you don’t eat ice cream.


At some point in that busy summer, we packed up the car and drove straight through to Michigan. Bethy met her cousin, Katy, who was born a little over a month after she was born. We played on Lake Michigan in the sand and visited with Harry’s sister Sally and family. family

All of that, and we haven’t even gotten to September!


18 thoughts on “The Portugal Years: Year Four – Furlough; It May Not Mean What You Think It Means

  1. Aww, this was a sweet memory (except for Harry’s mother dying). I’m glad when you visited, you had a lot of great family to connect with. At least when you were busily going from one place to the next, it was because everyone wanted to see you so badly. 😀 Great post!

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  2. What gorgeous pictures, and such a nice memory (save illness and passing). What a busy time though! Certainly not a furlough in the standard sense!

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