St. John's Newfoundland

When we get a down day somewhere, we are still on a mission; make the most of it.  Sea Kayaking was the "via" decided upon to accomplish this goal yesterday.  This is a beautiful place as evidenced by the pics, but I can't wait to get home.  To quote J. Taylor, "I'm goin' to Carolina in my mind".


What's Fall without Croup and Chocolate?

Libby, Silas, and Louisa, in that order, have come down with a croup like illness. You know the tight chest, wheezy bit? All accompanied by the thick running nose and eyes to boot. Jackie took such pitty on Libby that she set her up a little palate, just perfect for a sickie. She read her stories, helped her sip water and eventually....

Libby was fast asleep. She slept in this chair for a good hour, while the rest of us chanted through Brenda Shurley English. We have kept ourselves busy the past 2 days with this very same routine, sick kids, doting on sick kids, and schooling. All of this routine was suddenly upset today when the kids announced the ups man was here with a box. A box, you may ask, yes I did too, I haven't ordered anything in some time and was quite curious what it could be. It dawned on me that perhaps it was a birthday present for Libby, as she is turning 3 next week. Well, I was wrong, joyously so. All I have to say is Thank you Mrs. Jackson! If you are quite curious about what is in this assortment, then do look to your left there on the screen and scroll down to Joseph Schmidt Confections. There you may entice yourself with all of the delectable goodies Mr. Schmidt is selling this Fall. And did I mention I love Fall?


The 'Stan

Our time with the forward det was humbling, living in their spaces and in accordance with their routine for just a couple of days made us appreciate our very convenient and luxurious lifestyle back in North Cackilaki.  Even more so as I prepare to deploy again next January; I intend to make the most of my time with those seven treasures God has sovereignly placed me with in this world.

The first picture is of my pool-front view from billeting and the other is of friends that I made during my time at the airfield.  This was after our goodbyes and them driving away...a very emotional time for all of us. 



Dear Fall,

Thank you for coming. Please don't trick me and pretend to be summer again. I made homemade applesauce today in honor of you. Will you stay please? My children spend more time outside when you're here. Cinnamon sits on my kitchen shelf more often than garlic. Even the dog seems to mind his momma. Most importantly Fall, this year my husband will enjoy you with me. It's our first Fall together since living in North Carolina. We have some fun little things planned. So stay, don't go away.

In case you can't tell, I love the Fall Season. It's my favorite, hands down. Pumpkins, apples, cinnamon, tea any time of the day, beautiful leaves, crisp breezes, the oven pays for itself over and over again, blue jeans and cashmere sweaters (I purchased my first one last year with Christmas money), children motivated to do well with school, hot apple pies and crisps, long drives (perhaps this year it will be long walks), scents of pumpkin pie candles, there's much more to say. There's just a sweetness about it. Perhaps it's the one season of the year where commintments are at their least, whatever the reason, I'm so pleased it's finally here. Yeah! Enjoy your Fall sweet loved ones.


Mt Ararat

The westerner's requested route of flight conspicuously took them just north of the famed Mt Ararat in eastern Turkey (over 16,000' MSL!).  After having asked Ankara Control for a descent and hold at present position, they promptly responded with "Otis 03, have you ever spent time in a Turkish prison, and would you like to?"

So what do you think?  Is this the place of Noah's landing (or rather, grounding), or is it all just hype?


Flying East

Going eastbound has its challenges, namely that you arrive at your destination late having lost hours of daylight due to time zone crossings.  It also doesn't help when you get started across the Atlantic and then remember that you have forgotten the aircraft fuel card which is essential in purchasing fuel at your various stops.  That cost about five hours and pushed our timeline right for the rest of the trip.  When you arrive at an o-conus military base at 0400, there are not exactly many services available to the service members.  So, what do we do, we sleep for a few hours and then "hit the vil'", which for me means simply getting some local variety chow and seeing the sights.  This is a picture going across the eastern Atlantic between the Azores and Portugal.  The second pic is our destination, Souda Bay Crete and "the vil'" which in this case is the port city of Chania. 


Silas' Little Hang Out

Most littles have one, they vary from one to the next to be certain. Silas loves the kitchen, in particular the tupperware cabinet which is just adjacent to the dishwasher. There's a corner there and he dumps things all over the floor. He'll gnaw on Jake's water bottle lids and try to sit on all of the other lids. It's so cute to watch him busily play. What's the best, is that there's nothing he can destroy. Here's my little hangin' out!


Authority is challenging.

What is it about this sinful nature of ours that refuses to yield to authority? I am beginning to see the difficulty of sons yielding to their mother's authority. The older the boys get, the more apt they are to challenge me and see just how far I will yield. The problem typically begins as soon as Jake leaves the front door. It's as if the sons might be curious if I should be submissive to them. Clearly there is some role playing involved, but sometimes it's complete disregard. They by no means have my best interests at heart, even though they've seen nothing but loving, respectful leadership from Jake in regards to me. It's almost as if they think that I'm foolish and never know what I'm talking about, questioning most of my decisions.

All this to say that in my analyzing of them, I too will sometimes challenge my God. Not trust him through uncertainties and resist him subtly if not blatantly. The Lord always has my best at heart, yet I stubbornly resist. Lord, forgive me of my pride and may I gently lead my son's and be forgiving of them.


Please, don't turn us in..

..to those people who protect animals and don't mess with them. We really couldn't help ourselves. The kids keep us so busy during the day, that at night after their asleep we harass our dog.

Tricycle Built for 2?


Check Her Out!!

That is my sweet Louisa. She's riding her bike. It took her like 10 minutes, no kidding to get it figured out. She loves it, though hasn't discovered how the brakes work. She discovered that crashing into me with Silas on my back won't work. Next she realized that crashing into Libby while riding on her tricycle doesn't work either. Perhaps she'll get it this next time.

To chair or not to chair,

that is the question. Our neighbor gave us this old chair. The thing had sat in her garage for four years. The night we received it, we discovered a great hoard of spiders. It went to our garage, where I gutted it, ridding it of some very strange little pests... I cleaned it up, stripped it, sanded it, then stripped it again. Staining the thing finally and brought it into The Reynolds Upholstery Shop. We spent a good bit of Tropical Storm Hanna's lock down time working on it. Jake proved to be amazing and did all the grunt work, while I cut out the fabric. We had fun and will post pictures of it once it's complete. Hopefully sooner than too much later.

The Name of the Game?

Concentration. Ben is focused on his spelling list here. He takes spelling lessons by Andrew Pudewa through the Institute of Excellence in Writing. He's progressed somewhat these past 4 weeks and has mastered his first list, moving to list 2. It's Ben against the machine. You should see him pump his fist when he spells a word correctly. There's a chance for victory on every line. The perfect challenge for the left handed warrior on any given afternoon.

Hanna and Ike-2 different storms

As my friend wrote on her blog, Hanna was an effeminate storm, named such and really was quite wimpy. Now with all eyes on Ike, we wish Hanna would revisit and Ike never would have come into play. It's destroyed the physical life of some 80 people and it's eye is fixed on Texas. We cry mercy, and yet we know, our God is Sovereign and Awesome. So, we pray and trust that through it all God will be glorified.

Because Hanna was such a wimp we were able to enjoy a spaghetti and meatball feast over a good game of risk and an enjoyable glass of wine. Lights, camera, action!



This is a picture from 2 weeks ago.  Jake took the boys, not including Silas, for a kayaking adventure.  They had fun as always.