Horn Happenings

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Location: San Antonio, Texas, United States

Wednesday, November 30, 2005


Once again another Thanksgiving has come and gone. Filled with food, fun, and family this was truly a day to be thankful for. Two years had passed since the entire Horn family had gathered together around the feasting table, which made this Thanksgiving all the more special.

This year my wonderful Uncle Steve drove down from Fort Worth to join us for our Thanksgiving celebration in addition to Mr. and Mrs. Howell and their son, Brian. Those who are acquainted with the Howell family know the joy and laughter they bring wherever they go. Our meal time was spent laughing and listening to some of the fascinating stories these true Texans shared. I’ve come to the conclusion that no one can tell a good story like a Texan. Needless to say, I don’t believe we ever laughed so hard before on Thanksgiving Day!

Here are just a few snapshots from our joyous time of fellowship and thankful remembrance with friends and family.


Mom's famous hot apple cider. We drank this despite the heat. Posted by Picasa

Mom and John enjoying some after dinner conversation. Posted by Picasa

The charming and energetic Mrs. Howell. Posted by Picasa

Mr. Howell Posted by Picasa

Dad, Tim, and Brian - watching the Cowboys lose. Posted by Picasa

"Flowers and candles - what more could you want?" Posted by Picasa

"A little flame." Posted by Picasa

Monday, November 28, 2005


24 years ago today, a young bride arrayed in pure white walked down the aisle to her waiting groom. Hand in hand, this young couple faced many difficulties and overcame obstacles over the years which might have broken other marriages, but their commitment to each other never wavered. Life has held - and continues to bring - many challenges, but united in their common goal to honor God, this now not-so-young couple stands as a beacon of faithfulness. The years have only added, not diminished their love.

It is a great delight and privilege to wish my parents a heart-filled congratulations on this, their 24th wedding anniversary. Mom and Dad - may I never take for granted the Godly home you raised us in, and the unconditional love you demonstrate to each other. Thank you.

Happy Anniversary!!


Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Growing up I had a special privilege relatively few people in America share today. My name stood for something.

The small town where I spent the first 18 years of my life was the same place my grandfather was born and raised, and where my dad, his son, grew up as well. As a small town grocer, my grandfather built upon his own father's reputation as a fair, honest man. People who shopped at his store knew they were not being cheated or short-changed, and many are the appreciative remarks I've heard over the years about my grandfather.

When my dad started his own law practice in that same town many years ago, he also had the privilege to build upon his father's name. Dad was known by all around him to be an incredibly uncompromising, honest attorney. He truly had a heart to help people with their problems. These were attributes which stood out in sharp contrast to the majority of those who shared the same professional field.

Over the past couple of years I have been blessed on numerous occasions by people expressing to me their personal appreciation for the honesty and integrity of both my grandfather and my dad. More than once, a person has asked me if I am related to the Horns who owned the grocery store on Main Street as they share memories of time spent there. While working in my dad's office, numerous people have inquired of me, "Are you Jeff's daughter?" as they express their gratefulness for the character my father possesses. It was always with pride, never shame, that I could happily claim my relation to both of these men.

Now that we are in Texas, far away from most of our connections, I find that heritage of carrying on a good name has not been abandoned by then next generation of Horn men. When Tim moved to San Antonio two years prior to our relocation, he established a reputation for hardwork and integrity which I have been blessed to have people share with me about. It is a joy, not an embarrassment, to be know as "Tim's sister," and to be associated with his name as we begin our life here in Texas.

Truly, what a heritage it is to carry a good name.


Tuesday, November 15, 2005


How wonderful and exciting it is to see a young man and a young woman honor God by following His principles in regards to marriage. So many marriages today end in divorce, partly due to the nonchalant, frivolous attitude encouraged by dating. There is little thought given to counsel from parents, earnest prayer regarding the Lord's Will, and truly seeking to know that this is a person you are willing and able to live with for the rest of your life. One example of how far we as a culture have rejected God's plan for marriage is found in most modern weddings. It is become only a tradition with little or no meaning for a father to walk his daughter, the bride, down the aisle and give her away to the waiting groom. But all this is not so in the story I am about to tell.

Many years ago a dear and precious family came into my life. As time passed I was privileged to become close friends with their younger daughter, Danielle. Through countless sleep-overs, family get-togethers, church functions, and even joining Danielle and her family on trips, I came to deeply love them all, including the oldest daughter, Rachel.

Rachel was an example and inspiration of incredible diligence and perseverance as she studied to one day become a midwife. She had such a sweet love for young children and a tender compassion for expecting mothers. Willingly she endured grueling school hours and little sleep in her effort to learn the skill of midwifery while staying under the roof and authority of her father. God blessed Rachel with many unique experiences through her desire to serve Him. Although not yet a midwife, she has single-handedly delivered two babies in cars while en route to their original delivery destination. This feat has earned her the well deserved nickname of "The Mobile Midwife." But I digress. My story today is not only about Rachel, but also includes a young man named Joe.

One morning earlier this year, Rachel, along with her mother and sister, came to visit Mom and me. Nothing was very unusual about that, or so at least I thought. While gathered around our table, Rachel all of the sudden began to speak. "Mrs. Horn," she said, "I want to tell you a story about a young man and a young woman . . ." Through many happy tears we listened as Rachel explained how a certain young gentleman had requested permission from her father to court her. Permission had been granted, and so a new chapter opened in Rachel's life.

Over the next several months I was blessed to watch, mostly from a distance, how God was drawing these two young people together. Due to our move, I was not able to spend much time with Rachel and Joe, but through telephone conversations with my dear friend, Rachel's sister, I was kept abreast of all that was happening. A few days ago we received glorious news as Rachel called to announce her engagement to Joe. Or, as she put it, "Someone asked me a question, and I said yes!" My heart filled with joy. What a tremendously happy and special time it is to witness an upcoming union of two Christians who seek to live with Christ as the center of their lives.

Joe, Rachel is much loved by all of us and we are thrilled that a man of your caliber has come into her life. Rachel, we are all so excited as God opens this new chapter in His plan for you. Many blessings and congratulations to both of you from the entire Horn family.

Come next May, if the Lord wills, I shall be back in good old New Jersey to witness this wedding. I can hardly wait!

~Rachel and Joe~


Tuesday, November 08, 2005


As I pressed the blinking red light and cast my first ever vote earlier today, my thoughts drifted back to memories of watching my parents faithfully vote each election day. I remember watching as they disappeared behind the blue curtains to punch their respective ballots and wonder if I’d ever be old enough to cast my own vote. Life has changed drastically with our move, so my initiation into the voting ranks was not, as I had always figured, in the gym of the little elementary school my dad had attended many years ago. It seems strange to think that after living all those years in New Jersey, my first ballot casting would take place in Texas.

Through the years I have been privileged to see my mother’s wonderful example of voting as a woman. She determined that submission extended to voting, as in all other aspects of life, and made sure that her vote would never cancel out Dad’s. I am grateful this vision of "family voting" has been passed down to me, and today as I prepared to go to the polls, my heart’s desire was to vote in accordance with my parents.

It shows a feministic mind set and lack of understanding the concept of Biblical authority for young women to say that who and what we vote for is "our own business." We are under the authority of our fathers and should seek to honor them by not canceling out their vote. Personally, it is my desire that our country was structured so that only the heads of the household cast his vote on behalf of the family. Since our country gives all individuals over the age of 18 the right to vote, I desire, like my mother, to use my "right" in seconding my father’s vote.

Here in Texas I was privileged to cast my vote in defense of marriage by voting "yes" on this proposition. Although I am grateful to live in a state where a proposition such as this has a chance of success, my heart breaks when thinking of how far my beloved country has sunk to even need such a wording in a state constitution. Instead of having a despairing spirit about the course America is taking, my resolve to live a culture-changing life has been further strengthened by seeing the depths man can fall to when he has forsaken Biblical principles of living. May God bless our efforts to affect our culture, one family at a time.



Last Friday night, Tim and I joined a group of other young people (and a few young-at-heart!) for an evening of food, fellowship, and fun at the Sarratt home. It was such a joy for me to gather around the dining-room table and talk, swap stories, laugh, and learn a little more about the other young ladies who live in this area.

I have learned that an evening at the Sarratt home is far from dull, not that I ever thought it would be! Fierce games of air hockey were fought with much spirit and zest throughout the night. Tim, to my knowledge, still reigns as the official air hockey champ, but more than one person expressed a longing desire to change that. For those who cared to play, games of ping-pong were being waged in the garage as well, although I never made it out there myself.

As the evening progressed, the real games began. Although I have played "Pictionary" on numerous occasions, never before have I enjoyed the exhilarating form of this game known as "Running Pictionary." I'm sure I won't do justice to this game in attempting to describe it, but I shall try. Separating into two teams, each team tries to be first in completing the list of things or ideas to draw. An impartial contestant, in this case Mr. Sarratt, has charge over this list which both teams work from, and only gives the next word to draw when a team has correctly guessed the previous answer. Whichever team finishes the list first, wins.

As a church we have been studying the book of James, so Mr. Sarratt cleverly compiled the list of words to draw directly from that book. Cindy Sarratt was the champ on our team. Whenever we were stumped, she would start quoting portions of the book of James in an attempt to stumble upon the right verse.

I look forward to more times of fellowship with these new San Antonio friends. Many thanks to the dear Sarratt family for their graciousness in opening up their home.


Our hostess, Mrs. Sarratt
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Tim, with his ever present camera
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Andrew, figuring out the score.
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Cindy, trying to help her team along in Gesstures
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An enthusiastic Tim
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Lovely ladies, Jessie and Lourdes
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Thursday, November 03, 2005


Sometimes unusual events cause us to see common fixtures around us in a new way. Let me explain:

The other day while picking my grandfather up from the Adult Day Car Center where he attends a few days a week, I ran into a dilemma. A big dilemma. My grandfather refused to get in the car with me to come home.

Somehow, in his confused state of mind, he thought that he had borrowed a friend's car without telling him, and now he needed to return it. Knowing that this was entirely impossible, I attempted to try and convince him to get in the car with me and told him that we could figure it all out later. I now know who I inherited my stubbornness from. Convinced that he was right, my grandfather determinedly set off looking around the parking lot for this "car."

Thankfully, I had remembered to bring the cell phone and quickly called my dad to see if he could convince my grandfather to at least get in the car with me. After a few minutes of discussion, Dad finally talked my grandfather into driving home with me, assuring him that he would take care of all the "car" details later.

Although unconvinced, my grandfather got into the car and we departed for home. Still upset about not returning this "car" he had "borrowed," my grandfather kept asking me how on earth Dad would be able to find the "car" and drive it back to its owner's home. I kept assuring him that he had a very smart, capable son who could figure it out, but that didn't seem to cut it. Anxiously racking my brain as my grandfather became increasingly agitated, I stumbled upon the perfect solution to calm him down. "PopPop," I said, "Jeff (when talking with my grandfather I have to call my dad by his first name so he knows who I'm speaking of) is a very intelligent man. He was an attorney for 25 years, and it was his job to solve problems for people. I'm sure he'll be able to take care of this for you."

Breathing a sigh of relief as I notice a more mollified grandfather, I was instantly grateful that although my grandfather often doesn't know who we are, he hasn't forgotten his pride in the intelligence and learning of his son.

Sometimes, you just never know when it will come in handy to have a really smart Dad.