Tuesday, April 22, 2008

36 Days

It has been a long time since I last posted, so I thought I'd give you a few glimpses into the highlights of the past 36 days.

For spring break, I went to the beach with my family. Most the week was rainy except the afternoon I arrived. I enjoyed that afternoon with a leisurely walk on the beach.

Eventually I sat down at this log to watch the sunset.

And a beautiful sunset it was!

Later in the week, the rain suspended for just long enough for us to make a toe-numbing, sand-blowing-in-our-teeth ascent to the top of Cape Kiwanda.

I guess you can't really see the view in these pictures, but here we are anyway!

I left the beach and the following night had a little get together with a few of the girls from the youth group that I've missed since the group ended.

The following day the family went out for chinese food to celebrate Mom's birthday!

I sat accross from Gavin and was amused by his use of chopsticks to transport rice.

He transported it to the top of his hamburger and then told me there was snow on his burger, just like on the mountain where his daddy snowboards.

A few days later, I went to pick up the 6th grader that I meet with weekly for discipleship, and she gave me this collage. It made my day! :-)

Not too long after that was the day Gavin turned four!

He always talks about his friends Zachary and Christopher and Amber and Andrew (whom he met when I watched him regularly prior to Carter's birth), and was so happy that three of the Smarts were able to attend his birthday dinner. Here he is jumping with Christopher and Zachary.

The best gift he received of course, was a red "Mac Hat"--like the one the character Mac wears hin his favorite movie, Cars. (That was from me). Oh yeah...and his parents gave him a bike. :-)

It was fun for me to finally mix my two families--bringing my dear friends into the craziness that is the Smith household. Here Amber and I sit together while I hold Carter. Amber is snuggling under a racecar blanket I made for Gavin (the other part of his gift--although not nearly as exciting to him as the red hat).

The next week was full of fun excursions. After going to OMSI with the Smarts (sorry, didn't have my camera), I went to the Zoo with the Medinas. Gavin was so happy here as he watched the ducks in a pond.

It shortly became clear that Gavin was more interested in his baby brother than the animals. He crawled onto the stroller so he could ride while giving kisses to Carter.

I finally got a picture with both nephews!

When Carter fussed, Gavin wanted to console him with his finger.

After a long, tiring day at the zoo, we got some auntie-nephew cuddle time back at the Medinas.

Later, as I was babysitting Gavin, he picked a flower and carried it around for about a half-hour trying to keep it safe while he played outside.

The second week in April, my sisters and I went backpacking. Tracy had to write a paper at school and then do a 45 hour project related to her topic. I had encouraged her to pick something fun, and suggested a backpacking trip.

Bethany and I went with her and we packed along a cove and the stream that fed it, passing through beautiful old-growth forest along the way.

Since the topic of Tracy's paper was wilderness survival, we built a shelter in the forest--and we were pretty proud of it. (We slept in a tent, however, which was good since it was rainy.)

Two days after we returned from our trip, I went to Pendleton for my dear friend, Katie's wedding. She married a wonderful man named Brian.

The family member who was going to be their photographer got sick and I ended up doing the bride & groom's photo shoot.

It was a beautiful ceremony in an art center with lots of natural lighting.

I am so happy for my friend!

So, it has been a whirlwhind 36 days--full of ativities with the people I love. But with much less on the calendar for the next couple weeks, I'm looking forward to sleeping in my bed every night, resting, reading, writing and preparing for the next stage of my life.