Friday, July 26, 2013


The weather has been simply gorgeous here in Eastern Pennsylvania the last few days and I've been able to have most of my windows open ~ my favorite way to cool down our little apartment!! In fact, Thursday night on a stroller walk with Paul I brought along his blanket because it was a little chilly... but not too chilly that I couldn't later play volleyball. ;-) I'm glad my mom is nearby and more than willing to watch my little guy so I can get a little volleyball in.  I'm afraid there won't be a lot of volleyball in my future when we move to Thailand! It sure was fun Thursday night: lots of laughs, good volleyball action, and a great time to spend with friends. :-)

I wish you all could see our house right now: stuff is everywhere! I am in the thick of packing, sorting, and getting ready for a yard sale soon. The first wave of going through my kitchen cabinets was emotional because most everything we have in our apartment is from our shower/wedding, but now I've kicked into the "clean it out!" mode. :-) Of course there are still many decisions to make as to what to store here in PA, what to take with us to Thailand and what to sell off. At the end of the day though, it's just stuff.

My little munchkin is going to be turning one in September, which I can't quite believe. That year went way too fast! My in-laws will be heading our way the first part of August so we're planning to do a little party for Paul while they are here.  At first we weren't going to do a party but then thought that unless anyone comes to Thailand every September, we won't have family around to celebrate Paul's birthday with us. So party it is!

Not too much else is going on for us. We're home until the end of September and we're trying to soak up the moments with our family and friends before our big move overseas.  It's kind of strange in that we can't wait to get to Thailand but then also realize that a bunch of people we know and love won't be as much a part of our daily lives anymore.  What a blessing instant communication is! At least technology helps us stay a little more connected with life on this side of the pond. :-)

Friday, July 12, 2013

Picture Time!

There must be something so inspiring about cow appreciation day at Chick-fil-a, because we seem to time our family photos around that wonderful day. :-) And yes, we are going to dress up with our cute cow outfits and go enjoy some chicken for dinner tonight!

Last year we were waiting on our little Peanut and this year we have Paul joining us in the pictures... this time on the outside!

What a difference a year makes! Paul is now 10 months old and has brought a lot of joy and happiness to our little family. :-)  Now if we could just convince him to sleep... ;-)

Friday, July 5, 2013

Happy 4th!

We had a wonderful day, from early morning to a late night!

We joined my sister and her family for a morning of fun with a parade, sack races, three-legged races, and of course food!

Paul even had a festive outfit for the occasion!

Paul also competed in a race for the 0-2 year olds. He didn't win (shocking, right?!?) but he had a good time. :)

Nat joined in on the sack race, which was fun to watch. What a great way to spend the morning!

In the afternoon we had some family and friends over for a picnic. 30+ people definitely wouldn't fit into our apartment, so we opted for the great outdoors and was happy to see the weather cooperate. :)

We had a missionary family in all week so we had them over for the picnic too. The missionary entertained all the kids with balloon animals...

... including Paul!

Of course we finished the day with a few games of volleyball - my first time playing in two years!  What fun. :)

Most everyone else went to see fireworks, but we were too tired. We're hoping to see some Saturday night.

What a wonderful 4th of July. I'm sure next year won't be anything like this year. I'm so glad we were able to spend time with lots of dear people!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Playing Catch Up.

We've been home for almost a week and I finally feel like I'm getting into the swing of things. Unpacking was easy and getting adjusted to the East Coast was easy... for two of us anyway!  Our little babe decided it was way more fun to stay on West Coast time. :-)  Thankfully the last two nights have gone better than the previous four nights!

I was somewhat nervous going into our month-long trip out West, mainly because it was the first time we were on deputation without our car.  Up until that point, we were used to being in new places on new adventures ~ always in our car. :-) So, yeah, our comfort zone was gone for a month and replaced with planes, borrowed cars, trains, buses, RVs, and hotels.  We just kept rolling along and trying to be flexible!

But as usual, the Lord worked out all the details and we met some wonderful people along the way. My husband and I marveled at the way the Lord (once again!) met all of our needs, right down to giving us a place to stay when just the day before we were wondering where we were going to pillow our heads for the next night!

The West Coast is absolutely beautiful, and we only saw parts of Washington, Oregon, and Alaska. :-) I used to think Pennsylvania had mountains... nope, guess again!

Mt. McKinley in Denali National Park, Alaska

We are grateful that our deputation travels have taken us to some amazing scenery across this great country! There's nothing like staring at a beautiful mountain and feeling pretty puny. :-) Add to that Paul is one of the most traveled babies I know of. This kid has already been to 22 states... and counting. :-)

Alaskan mosquitoes took to Paul and left their mark. Two weeks later, and he still has a couple of marks on his face! He was a pretty happy camper through it all and thankfully most of his bites took place just a few days before we left Alaska.  I told our friends who live there that I'm going to have a really hard time picturing Alaska being cold and snowy because it was so hot and full of mosquitoes while we were there. Oh, and it was light outside for 22 hours.  Sheesh. 

We had a wonderful time in Alaska spending time with our friends. We were in the Interior, which isn't your typical picture of Alaska. We did get to see grizzly bears, caribou, moose, Dall sheep, mountains, mountains, and more mountains! There aren't too many major roads in Alaska, and most of them are around Fairbanks, which made it convenient for us. :-)

Paul's latest adventure is cruising around, with a lot of help from Mommy and Daddy. :-) He has attempted to crawl, but doesn't quite make it... although it sure is fun to watch!  Now that we're home, we're hoping he doesn't get too bored with being in one place.  We plan to be in PA for most of the summer, with a quick trip out to Ohio to help friends with vacation Bible school. I'm grateful for the time home to spend with family, friends, and trying to pack our apartment up for our move to Thailand.

We have our tickets in hand and we plan on leaving November 5 - just a little over four months away. Downsizing our apartment into eight suitcases is going to be a wonderful challenge.  I was thinking again this morning of how I'm going to do this and was ready to burst into tears at the thought of leaving my home.  We've spent three happy years in this little apartment, but being sentimental is not going to get things organized! I think I'll have one good cry over it and then get to work. :-)