Sunday, February 5, 2012

A gift well-received

Christmas morning, Zach received the Lego Star Wars Encyclopedia, a book he had taken out from the library many times... "I got my own copy?!"  The perfect response!

Daddy got a new Photoshop book... and is trying out some new techniques ;)

Sunday, July 24, 2011


We had a fantastic day on Saturday!  We started with canoeing for 2 hours along the Nashua River.  We found our way to a small still tributary that was filled with dozens of turtles.  The kids had a blast, but the heat finally wore us out.  When we returned to the dock, we jumped in the river with our lifevests and cooled off in the slow current!  Finally, when we got home, we spent some time on the slip 'n slide in the backyard!  We went to bed that night feeling exhausted, yet very fulfilled!  What a great day!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday, Lindsay!

Linsday Joy turned 2 yesterday.  I can't believe how fast the time is flying by!  We celebrated last night, then had a party with Karen's family this afternoon.  She was thrilled with her butterfly wings, boa, tutu, rain jacket and umbrella, and baby carraige!  She is such a joy to us, and she really seemed to enjoy the last two days.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Final pics of winter?

Now that the snow is just about gone, I thought I would post some more of my favorites from playing in the snow...

Not at the highest point of the snowbank, but getting there...

Shoveling off the roof!

The luge is ready... again!

Now that's the look of determination... looking for a new Personal Record time!

The snowman became like part of the family!

You'll notice there were no pictures of Lindsay in the snow... she wasn't a fan, and didn't last long enough to get the camera out.  Of course, if the snow was up to my armpits, I probably wouldn't have been so excited about it either.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Another Fine Ski Day

This weekend, Karen went away on the Women's Retreat with Grace Community Church.  So, Saturday, Nana watched Lindsay while Chip took the boys skiing at Wachusett Mountain in Princeton, MA (about 45 mins southwest).  Althoug we didn't get to do any skiing in February, both boys picked things up as if we had skied last weekend.  They did great!  Good turning and stopping, well controlled, and able to moderate speed.  We were even able to get all 3 of us on and off the lifts with no problems!  It helped that Chase was able to get himself on and off the lift without any help!

We started out the day with some drizzle, but by 2:30ish, there were blue skies.  It was so great to watch the boys skiing, talking and laughing together... just enjoying our time!  I'm looking forward to MANY more of these trips... someday even with all 5 of us! 

The only downside was that by the end of the day, they were bored with the "Lower Mountain Pass" that for a discounted rate gives you access to just the magic carpets and 1 chair lift... Next time we'll have to pay the full rate for the whole mountain.  But that's a cost I'm willing to pay for the fun we had together!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Alaska in February, of course!

Finally made it to Moose Pass!
Lindsay and I (Karen) had the amazing opportunity to travel to Moose Pass, Alaska to visit my dear friend, Wendy Joy Milligan....this is the friend who Lindsay Joy is named for.  We spent five full days with Wendy and her beautiful family in their beautiful location.  Although it seems odd to got to Alaska in February, it was actually a great time to visit.  First, the mountains were stunning covered with snow.  Second, because there was less daylight and less to do outside, Wendy and I got to spend a lot of time "doing life together" and TALKING...oh, and drinking chai lattes :) 

Two things stand out most about the trip.  First, is the time Wendy and I did have together.  We quickly and naturally reconnected as if we see each other daily, rather than reality: that we live thousands of miles apart in very different worlds.  She is a rare and treasured friend who "gets" me and ...I think... I "get" her.  (WHAAAAA?!) What a blessing.  The other thing: meeting Karis Lemlem, Mark and Wendy's daughter who they recently adopted from Ethiopia (she had only been home 2 months when we came to visit).  I loved the time really getting to know all four of their kids, but it was really a gift to hold and love this beautiful baby girl...and listen to that giggle.

We spent one day with Wendy's family in Soldotna taking family portraits (Lindsay and I spectated...well, there was a picture taken of Wendy and I that looked oddly like an engagement picture, but....), eating Coldstone's, having lunch at Wendy's parent's home (in that order), and laughing a whole lot....I mean, really, these people live up to the responsibility of having the last name: Joy!  It was so fun to see all of Wendy's sisters and her Mom and Dad again.  We went to Moose Pass Community Church on Sunday where Mark is the Pastor and Wendy leads great to see and experience what they have been pouring their hearts into for so long.  We drove to Seward one day to gawk at the mountains dropping into the sea (actually, it's a fjord)...amazing!  Andrew (Wendy's oldest, 8 yrs) and I went snowshoeing on our last day there...what a blast! 

Lindsay did great on all the flights!  Thanks for the prayers.  Only a few minor hiccups....but, I could see and feel God's grace through the whole experience of flying so far with a toddler on my lap.  He is so good!  She is a great little travel companion!  Thankfully, she is also living up to the name "Joy"!

The whole experience was so ....hard to sum up in words.  It was a gift, it was fun, it was an adventure, it was a challenge, it was beautiful, it was heart-filling (I don't know if that's a real phrase, but it works for me), it was life-giving.  Thank you, God!  Thank you, Wendy and Mark!  Thank you Chip and Mom for making it possible! And, thanks to all of you who prayed us through the travel!  (I sound like I'm accepting an Oscar :)

Taken from the Milligan's living room the first morning we were there.  As the sun came up I could not believe what I was seeing (we arrived in the dark).

Almost time to say a tearful goodbye at the beautiful Anchorage airport.

Karis Lemlem Milligan...aka: Cutie Patootie!

Moderately successful attempt at brainwashing the Milligan children (Andrew: 8, Anna: 3, Jacob, 6).

Seward...a sight to behold!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Too much snow?

You know you've had a lot of snow when even the snowman says, "Enough is Enough!"

This was actually taken several weeks ago.  Since then, after some warm days and even some sleet & rain, he's not looking so good.  Guess he shouldn't have been complaining after all!