Three Cheers for the Postman

By Mark Hopper   I suspect that the employees at the post office are the recipients of a lot of criticism.   I know I have voiced my frustration about the long lines and slow service at the post office in the past.  Maybe you have too.   I am sure that they hear many […]

30 Years (Part One)

By Mark Hopper Thirty years is a long time. It is almost a third of a century. But, that is how long we have lived in Diamond Bar, California. I began my new job as the pastor of our church on June 1, 1988 – 30 years ago. My wife and kids stayed in Arizona waiting for our […]

Stuck on the 405

By Mark Hopper Recently, my sister in law’s car broke down while she was driving on the 405 Freeway.  Bummer! She had spent a few days with her grandchildren in San Diego and was driving home to in Bakersfield when her Nissan began to sputter and finally died in the middle of the north bound 405 […]

Wedding Season

By Mark Hopper Spring has traditionally been the season for weddings. I often tell people that some of the happy parts about being a pastor are weddings and babies.  And, some of the sad parts about being a pastor are deaths and divorce. I have two requirements for doing a wedding – come to church […]

Leftover Easter Eggs

By Mark Hopper I have shared in previous articles how much my wife loves decorating our home during the various seasons of the year.  We have boxes and plastic storage tubs full of decorations for spring and fall, Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas.  I think we also have some patriotic decorations for the 4th of July. […]

Planting Seeds

By Mark Hopper I have an Aunt who lives in Des Moines Iowa. She was an elementary school teacher and principal for many years. Now she is retired and in her 90’s. We were able to visit her when my wife and I went to see the Solar Eclipse in the mid-west last summer. We enjoyed our […]

Bumper Crop

By Mark Hopper I always say that the nicest days in California are the days after it has rained. We have enjoyed some beautiful weather the past few weeks thanks to string of winter storms that brought blue skies, white puffy clouds and crystal clean air. It reminds you why Southern California is such a nice place […]

Lost And Found

By Mark Hopper You have read in my previous articles how much we enjoy getting to spend time with our grandchildren.  We usually babysit one day a week. They love to come to Grammy’s house and we love to have these special visitors. In addition to playing with toys and baking muffins at our house, we […]

Impossible

By Mark Hopper In C.S. Lewis’s famous book, “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”, there is a remarkable scene where the evil White Witch killed the powerful Lion named Aslan.  Aslan had willingly surrendered himself to the Witch.  She and her minions had bound, ridiculed and humiliated the Lion and she had personally killed […]

More Family Connections

By Mark Hopper Two months ago, my wife and I traveled to New York to see Niagra Falls in western New York and visit some of her cousins near Albany on the eastern side of the state.  My wife really enjoyed reconnecting with her cousins. She had not seen some of them in over 40 years. Over the past few years, we […]

A Famous Photo

By Mark Hopper Three years ago, my wife and I celebrated Christmas with our whole family in Lisbon, Portugal.  Our four adult children, three son-in-laws and seven grandchildren were all together for five memorable days. My wife’s mother was unable to travel with us to Portugal, but she sent some money to purchase gifts for […]

I Can Fix It (Part II)

By Mark Hopper A few weeks ago I shared that my lawn mower was broken.  I tried to fix it myself, but was unsuccessful.  Then I called my faithful lawn mower repairman but his phone was no longer in service. What a Bummer. In desperation, I looked on the internet to try and find another […]

College Football

By Mark Hopper One of the fun things that happens at this time of year is college football. The season has gone by so quickly and there is already a lot of talk about which teams will qualify to play in the post-season bowl games. There is something about college football that appeals to me. College football is full of […]

The Solar Eclipse: Part 2

By Mark Hopper   I shared in my previous article that my wife and I went to see the total Solar Eclipse in St. Joseph, Missouri, on August 21, 2017.  This was the first total solar eclipse to cross the entire USA in about 80 years.  It was exciting to be part of it.   […]

Little Friends

By Mark Hopper I was driving in Yorba Linda recently and saw a sign in front of a church.  It was Rose Drive Friends Church.  I have heard many good things about the church.  The sign in front of the church read, “Now Enrolling: Rose Drive Friends School & Little Friends Preschool”.  The phrase “Little Friends” caught my attention.  […]

Back To School

By Mark Hopper Everywhere you look these days, there are reminders that school will be starting again soon. My credit card company is encouraging me to use my credit card for back to school shopping. I guess they don’t know our children are actually out of college! Retail stores are advertising back to school sales […]

Rescuing a Lizard

By Mark Hopper I recently heard in the news that a woman called “911” because she was being strangled and bitten by her Boa Constrictor.  Fortunately, she was rescued by local law enforcement and survived this frightening event. My story is on a much smaller scale and not as dramatic.  Actually, I was not attacked by […]

A Can Of Paint

By Mark Hopper   I have discovered that after Spring cleaning comes Summer painting!  We recently hired some people to remodel our bathrooms.  The look great.  New fixtures, new tile and new paint!  It is amazing how nice they look. However, when you get new paint in one room, you notice how old the paint […]

A Manila Envelope

By Mark Hopper   Recently, I received a large Manila envelope in the mail from my brother.  He is my favorite brother. Actually, he is my only brother! He sends me a birthday card every year and signs it – “Your Favorite Brother”. I wasn’t sure what he was sending me .  My birthday is […]

Where’s My Bag?

By Mark Hopper Recently, my son and I took a father son golf trip.  My wife came along to cook for us and to clean our golf clubs each day (just kidding). My son and I enjoy playing golf and sharing time together.  He is a good golfer and can really hit the ball a […]