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Thursday, January 05, 2006

Finally Meeting Junior High Crush??

CPC 2006 - Anaheim - Day One of First of Three CPC's! Here are some miscellaneous pics and info for friends and family, ending with the story I headlined with: meeting Lisa Whelchel.

Here is the best Uncle and Aunt I have. (except for the others!) My Uncle Wilson is as smart as a rocket scientist... oh wait, he IS a rocket scientist for Boeing after years and years at McDonald Douglas before Boeing bought them. While most famous for her brownies, my Aunt Linda is one of the sources of my creativity and inspiration since I was in HER children's church as a kid... and showed me how to love and teach kids! And she's still at it, teaching first grade in the inner city of LA for 11 years now! We stayed at their house for two nights before CPC to enjoy Disneyland in the Rain!

No trip to California is complete without a trip to IN-N-OUT burger. A popular restaurant with a very short menu, but lots of favorites not on the menu. (My sister worked at this very location in high school.. before a Mac truck hit her and ended her career... she survived, but quit the job, but I digress!)

I got Steve Tanner an IN-N-OUT shirt so he could be an official California tourist... they come out with a new cool shirt every year. By the way, IN-N-OUT is owned by Christians and the tiny print Bible verses references on the bottom of the cups and fry wrappers have reportedly lead millions to Christ over the years.

Here's Steve keeping a close eye on the 15 computers in the eZone. Steve is the Kidology Director of Web Operations and is a whiz at everything and runs the eZone from the Kidology side of things. (his report is here)

Kelly and Kim are here too! Kelly is my preschool director at church, and also serves as a Kidology customer support rep - this is her first CPC. Kim is not new to CPC, but this is her first year as a trainer at CPC - so CPC's bar has just been raised!

One of the highlights of CPC for me is meeting people who are fans of Kidology or ToyBox Tales. Here I am with two cool dudes, Johnathen Somner and Garrett Wyile who regonized me from ToyBox Tales and had a fun story from their attempt at a live toybox tale last week, complete with an arm falling off and uncontrolled laughter in the middle of the tale! What fun!

Terri Withers was just one of many people who stopped me to say thanks for the website and to talk about how much they enjoy and use it. It always makes my day. I remember like yesterday the Christmas break when I first started the site in 1994... and its so exciting to see how it's grown. In December 2005 we have over 90,000 people visit the site visiting over 390,000 pages (nearly 2.7 million hits) on six continents! (over 1000 vistors from Asia and over 200 people in Africa!) God has really blessed us. So getting to meet some of these folks in person is always a huge blessing to me. IF YOU ARE AT CPC PLEASE DON'T HESTITATE TO STOP ME AND SAY HELLO!

Babbie Mason was the worship leader.... WOW... front row seats were pretty intense. But her passion for Jesus and worship was obvious.


FLASH BACK TO THE 80's... the days of BIG HAIR and the nine season series, the Facts of Life TV show. (which I wasn't really allowed to watch... but did anyway once in awhile)

Lisa Whelchel was the popular 'snob' on the show... and a pretty girl for sure. Anyway, I wasn't a big fan of the show, and only saw a few episodes but at some time later when I was in junior high, she came out with a Christian album:

"All Because of You" was the album. I worked part time at a Christian book store where my mom worked full time. I did part time work like mailings, coupon sorting, and other much more boring stuff... but with my hard earned money I bought this album and really liked it. I listened to it on my tape player until I wore the tape to shreds. When my parents asked me why I bought the album, I said because I liked the music. However, they had a different theory, they thought I bought it because there was a pretty girl on the cover. Now tell me, honestly, would a junior high boy buy an album simply because of a pretty girl on the cover? I rest my case. Anyway, they continued to tease and torment me about my supposed 'crush' on Lisa Whelchel. They went so far as to play a very funny and memorable joke on me. You remember those LP displays in record stores? The record companies would send stores a bunch of cardboard copies of the album covers to make displays with, hang from the ceiling, post around etc. The Lighthouse Christian Bookstore where I worked got so many of these, my mom routinely brought them home for use to use for drawing on the back (nice plain white) or to use in crafts. WELL.... they must have sent hundreds of copies of Lisa's album, because when I got home from school one day, my ENTIRE ROOM was plastered with pictures of Lisa Whelchel.... floor, ceiling, walls, propped between knobs of my desk and dresser... basically every conceivable spot in my room had her face.. the same one, copies of the album cover above. When I walked in my bedroom and gasped and laughed by parents came around and said, "We thought this would help you focus on the Lord while you listen to her album." Obviously, they had a great sense of humor. I was content to leave the room that way permanently, but finally one day I came home from school to find them all gone, and just one remaining on my bulletin board.

Why am I talking about this? Lisa was the final speaker tonight at CPC and I finally got to meet my junior high crush... er.... spiritual influence and tell her this story and get a picture with her.
Me and one of my youthful crushes, er, I mean, SPIRITUAL MENTORS!

FYI: You can download MP3's of her 80's album here.



At 11:00 PM, January 05, 2006, Timothy said...

Ouch...I'm showing a little bit of age here, but my first "encounter" with Lisa Welchel was when she was one of the "new" Mousketeers on the syndicated revival of the Mickey Mouse Club. I was surprised a few years later to find her on "Facts of Life". Glad you got to meet her in person!

At 2:23 PM, January 07, 2006, Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing! That was great! I doubt that Sara will let you post this pic all over your room, eh?
Posting at 3 am in the morning... do you EVER sleep?
Shelly Sexton
Soon to be stalking in Orlando (JK)


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