Monday, October 12, 2009

The Word of the Day is: Blessed

I'm blessed in a lot of ways. After day one of the new job, I wanted to post this update because I've had such tremendous support and interest on Facebook, so I hope to answer most (if not all) of your questions here.

So here's the facts...
Jaxon Engineering & Maintenance is a small company that started in August by people that have actually been doing this kind of thing for years. "What do they do?" you ask...Understandably, I'm still getting to know the company myself, but here's my basic explanation for now:

Jaxon designs/builds/maintains (but I think mostly maintains) radar installations. The kind that look into space, and monitor national defense. We already have several contracts, with locations across the country, and a couple overseas. (One of the exciting things is that it looks like I will be traveling to some of the locations.)

My title is Human Resources & Security Director. So I handle all the HR stuff, and am starting the learning curve to become the company's FSO (Facility Security Officer) - which has to do with security clearances and things like that for defense contracts.

For the locals: our building is behind the huge USAA building at Research & I'm available for lunch in the North Academy area. ;)

It's also very cool to be working with some really great people. There's definitely a sense of a close community here, and several of the people are actually at Vanguard too.

I definitely have that "looking forward to work in the morning" feeling.
So here's to the exciting new adventure...and I'll try to get some photos tomorrow to post.

Thanks, God, for your awesome, unpredictable timing and predictable faithfulness!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Cold Weekend!

Snow and ice hit CS this week!
(It took me at least a good 15 minutes to de-ice the Sub this morning)

Fortunately, it was relatively warm/dry Friday night when we went to Acacia Park. I was once again joined by my brother, and Tim, Bethanie, and Chad from church. I picked up 10 pizzas, and Tim and I joked about how we once again fell for the silly mind-game of "Uh-oh...we have too much food" to the 30-minutes later thought of "Uh-oh...we don't have enough food!"

Steve put out the word at work, and actually brought quite a few blankets and jackets. I wanted to make sure they could try and stay warm back at their camp, and planned to drive down and drop them off. I wasn't able to find it last night, so I went out this afternoon and found it. They have some tents and tarps set up among the trees right between Fountain Creek and the Greenway trail behind the Wal-mart by Cimarron & 8th St. (info for the locals)

I got their permission to take photos, so here's a photo tour:
From the south-side of Wal-mart there's a path that heads down to a tunnel going under the road:

This is the Greenway trail...

...only about a 5-minute walk till you see their spot through the trees:

Just a few feet away from the creek:

And I helped Matt, Lolo, and Fatboy get a nice fire going!:

After hanging out with them for a while, I mentioned that I was going to be at church tomorrow, and would see if I could get some help getting them some items they need. (tarps, rope, matches/lighters, firewood, hand-crank lamp, gloves, hats, scarves, blankets, jackets) Then came the highlight of my day/weekend: Matt again thanked me, and was really appreciative of my help, and said he'd like to go to church with me next week!

Woo-hoo! I know I need to take everything with a grain of salt, and not give up or be disappointed if he changes his mind by next week, but I see it as a step in the right direction, and I'm really excited.

I'm also excited about the "Idea" I referenced in my last post. After talking with Matt last night, he agreed to let me try to do some kind of informal documentary/interview type thing. I basically just want to have video of him telling his story (and maybe include a couple other people that are willing) to show to folks at Vanguard and hopefully get more help/involvement. I've been feeling a sense of urgency to do this soon, because Matt has stage 4 Hodgkins-Lymphoma, and might not be around much longer.

Ok, that's it for now. I'm going to enjoy some of Wendy's fabulous chicken tortilla soup, and reflect on how thankful & appreciative for hot, yummy soup, a warm home, and a warm, comfortable bed that I'm blessed with.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Unemployment is Fun!!

Wow….since my lay-off last Wednesday, I feel like I’ve been pretty darn busy and active. Guess I don’t fit the welfare stereotype of sitting at home collecting unemployment checks. Seeing the comments on Facebook alone is proof how covered in prayer we’ve been….we are so blessed to have so many friends/family thinking about and praying for us. I can honestly say that I have experienced nothing but peace and joy during this whole process. Thanks to our friends/family, and thanks, praise and worship to our Jehovah Jireh…our Provider.

I even forgot to do an update as to what happened with Acacia Park last week. As I was driving there, I was thinking about how every single visit has been different, so I had every reason to believe that it would again be a unique experience and I would encounter something unexpected.

So here’s what was different:
•Apparently, I arrived a few minutes after most of the “regulars” had cleared out
•I was disappointed at first, fearing the food would be wasted (silly Josh, you
should know better)
•I was pleased to get to spend time in conversation with Matt again (wheelchair)
•We were interrupted when cops started chasing one of Matt’s acquaintances down the
street on foot. (“Africa” apparently had swiped a laptop)

Of course, God still moved. I have faith that although I may not be seeing immediate results of “Kingdom impact” I know that we are ministering to people by providing physical needs with food/coats/scarves…and ministering to their souls by talking to them and (hopefully) making it clear that I’m interested in who they are and listening to them.

It was great to have my brother spend the evening with me side-by-side as well. And in my weekly conversations with Matt, I’m starting to get an Idea…I’ll expand on that as I flesh it out a bit.

As for the job situation…again, nothing but praises as we sit back in awe of God’s hand. I was officially laid off on Wednesday, 9/30. On Thursday, 10/01 I had an interview with Jaxon Engineering. It’s a newer company, owned/operated by the parents of friends from church (and other Vanguard people work there). Then on Monday, they call and ask if I can come in again on Tuesday to talk again for a little bit. Sure! At the end of Tuesday’s meeting, they say they will discuss it over the weekend and get back to me on Monday. Orrr….maybe less than 24 hours later they call and offer me the position!! Whaaa? How’d that happen?

Here are several key factors I see playing into this:
•The owners/CEO (as well as most employees) are believers
•I had a fantastic chat for a good 20 minutes or so with the CEO
•The position is a combination of HR/Security/Purchasing – they need someone who
has at least some experience/exposure with these (which I have), but more
importantly someone who is willing & able to be flexible (which I am)
•Timing: when I suddenly became available “conveniently” coincides with when the
company started feeling a need for someone in this capacity
•They hadn’t advertised the position; no other candidates – they just heard my name
and situation and wanted to “feel it out”
•X factor – the unknown variable that I will just attribute to God knowing & seeing
far more than any of us can.

Almost every day for weeks, I’ve been praying for wisdom and clarity in searching for a job, and especially when faced with a decision like this. I had another job possibility that I was getting ready to dive into if the Jaxon thing didn’t pan out. I was waffling a bit as to which way I should go, but then in my conversation during the 2nd interview, and when they called and made the offer, I felt like I got slammed in the face by a 2x4 made of wisdom & clarity. It was almost – dare I say it? – easy!

There is still plenty of uncharted water out there. On Monday I start my new job doing….umm, not sure exactly what. But I’m confident (and apparently so is Jaxon) that I’ll get it figured out and look forward to looking back at this a year from now and continue the marvel and praise at how God works in our lives.

My heart is so full, and I feel like I could ramble a bit more, but I’ll tie off this bleeder for now and come back. Heading out to Acacia Park again tomorrow night! (With no set expectations, of course)

Friday, October 2, 2009


So, through a Craigslist ad, I was able to pick up 4 hours of work at the Double Eagle casino up in Cripple Creek. (4 hours today, 4 on Sunday - setup/tear-down) I didn't know what the event was until after agreeing to work. It's the Wheel of Fortune's traveling contestant search thing. They do a mini-version of the game show and stuff. I mostly moved boxes, unpacked stuff, help setup the heavy stuff on the stage.

I didn't get many pictures, but I'll try and get some on Sunday before tear-down.
It was beautiful's a view from highway 67 looking down on Cripple Creek. (It was safe for me to take, cuz I was stopped by road construction workers)

Here's me and Cardboard Vanna:

Unpacking the categories for the game board:

And on the way back, I stopped at Jonie's Deli in Woodland Park for lunch, and had a very de-lish turkey melt.

Reap the rewards - I was given some Wheel schwag to keep.

(I had to do those last two photos as links, cuz blogger wouldn't upload anymore)