Michael has moved into flying Christmas trees and it is very challenging work! Check out the videos below when you're done reading. Each load weighs between 700-1,000 pounds and consists of 10-15 trees. The trees are cut out in the tree farm, bundled together, and then flown to a landing site where they can be loaded into trucks. It requires Michael to be very precise, often having to thread the bundle through standing trees or other obstacles. Time is of the essence for each load, because the farmer is paying for the helicopter per hour and the the longer it takes the more costly it becomes per tree. Michael has proven to be very quick and efficient, almost always completing a cycle of pick-up and drop-off in less than a minute. All of his farmers have been very happy so far!
|Michael leaning out to check the load - notice the red line hanging down|
It is cold and rainy, and Michael has to regularly lean out the window to keep an eye on the line and the load. Yesterday he came home exhausted and sore (and wet and hungry!). BUT, he loves doing this! It is extremely valuable experience, and definitely could help him on the missions field someday. Not to mention he just loves a good challenge, especially in flying.
It is really nice to be home, in Newberg, for awhile. Most of the tree farms are within an hour of here. In fact, Oregon sells more Christmas trees than any other state, between 6-9 million each year! Check where your tree came from when you buy it this year. Michael may have flown it!
This will last through December 11th, and then we are headed to Florida. All four of us are SO excited. Not only will we be able to spend Christmas with almost all of Michael's immediate family, but Michael and his twin brother, Jess, will be able to spend their birthday together on December 14th. That is a rare treat for them.
The kids and I continue to plug along in our school work each day. They are fantastic learners and I am also getting a whole new education. It has been challenging the last couple of weeks, staying on task with the daily things, when we have some big things coming in the near future. We want the big things now! Patience truly is a virtue.