Friday, September 24, 2010

nine is fiiiine

Happy, happy birthday to our
baby boy

I bless you in Jesus' Name today, son.
He has created you to be a strong warrior for His Kingdom,
and we are so proud of you!
Happy birthday Quinn Samuel!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

19 years and counting

that's alot of
conflict resolution
sleepless nights with children
penny pinching
better and worse
sickness and health
and countless cups of coffee

I wouldn't trade our journey so far
for anything in this world

God is so good youth...
big hair and a bangle bead fettish

happy anniversary honey!!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

harvest moon festival

We were able to celebrate the Moon Festival
with the local Chinese culture association Saturday.
What a difference in Gracie compared to
her first festival last September!
She loved the food (tofu even) and we all
just love being immersed in her birth culture.
It's also such a thrill to be with other families
with their little ones adopted from China.
The festival basically celebrates the time of harvest
and traditionally a moon cake is served.
(isn't too pleasant tasting I must say)
Poor Quinn...thought he was getting a moon pie.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

the loooong trip home

so last weekend we were rested up
and ready to head home
from our little mountain getaway.

it all started out innocently enough
with a wrong turn on the interstate...
(must've been the high altitude
affecting the brain)

our goal was to visit
historic jonesborough, tn,
the oldest town in tennessee.
that was the destination of many
trips with my family as I was growing up.

exit 19

after realizing we had taken the wrong exit
we stopped to switch drivers.
(the teenage driver
will remain nameless)

ahh...back on the road to try out
the directions given by a local.

after driving in a very large circle, we were back at
exit 19

this time we and asked for directions
(for the second time)
and realized it was time for lunch.
we drove a few exits down to eat.
(we knew there were a ton of restaurants here
thanks to the aforementioned incorrect directions.)

as we were getting everyone out to eat,
erin says "where's my other shoe?"
we then realized when drivers were switched at,
you guessed it,
exit 19
her shoe fell out of the van

so...miss fashionista had to wear her sister's hiking boots
(I know, I know - cruelty) to lunch

we were one happy, Spirit-filled bunch for sure,
so full of joy & love...

we piled back in & headed BACK to
exit 19
and there, in a lonely, remote parking lot,
we found the little lost sperry.
all was well in erin's world

we finally found the correct exit
and toured this beautiful little town

this is the restaurant where I had
my first official "dress-up date"
in a very fancy environment
wearing a very fancy
Jessica McClintock gunne sax dress.
( I was 11 and the date was with my Dad)

a visual picture of how
poor Quinn felt at this point of the day

ahh, a little sugar to ease the stress

we were PAST ready to go home.
after driving for almost an hour,
Brian and I said almost simultaneously...
"this doesn't look familiar"

and I'm not even kidding,
at that very second we saw this

at least when we turned around to go the right way,
we were able to say a proper goodbye to our friend
exit 19
bottom line:
a 2 1/2 hour trip
took well over 7 hours

4 states in one day

Gracie didn't sleep
ONE wink in the van

we need a GPS

the end

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


As Brian said this morning...
"I wish we could press the re-wind button."

We were able to get away for the holiday weekend
to an incredible place of retreat and renewal
for families in ministry.
It is located in Tennessee,
and it was amazing...
We're so grateful!

no TV
no computer
high temps near 60
lows in the 40s
no alarms
no schedule
breathtaking mountain views
fishing & hiking
priceless memories

The kids fished the majority of the time,
and we did a ton of hiking.

As we were hiking on Sunday morning
we actually met a family
(literally in the middle of nowhere)
with 2 girls from China -
so cool.

Our last evening there was great.
The girls had chocolate facials, and
we had a great game of Apples to Apples.
(The pictures show the descriptive cards
that each one of us ended up with...
I think I was set up...)

Our favorite memory of the whole trip
was made that night as well.
We all sat on the front deck looking at a brilliant sky
full of millions of stars.
Words can't describe it.
We also listened to barn owls calling
out to each other & watched bats making their evening rounds.
(OK, not my favorite thing)

When we were putting the kids to bed Quinn said
"That was the best day ever!"
I totally agree.

Time away like that puts so much of life into perspective.
"Things" don't matter...
Fellowship with the Father,
The freedom of being quiet before Him...
filled with worship and questions at the same time,
Peace with where & who you are,
Unhurried time with your favorite humans on the planet...
Those are the things that matter to this girl.

we saw a gazillion churches over the weekend
heh heh heh
Have I ever mentioned I detest facebook?
a soapbox for another day...

Lest you think our family/life is perfect,
I will soon share the story of our trip home.