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Our (almost) Last Road Trip!

7 Jun

I’m SO over traveling! Just in time for our nice, long relocation back to the PI, right? I’m so happy to be “home” for less than 12 hours before we head back out. I have two loads of laundry running, so I decided to take the time to update.

This road trip turned out to be the best ever because my friend, Jen (Noves), joined us for the entire trip! How many people would join a family of 6 on a (very non-luxurious) road trip??? Not only did she come along, but she changed diapers, helped with the kids, and joined me in belting out our favorite songs. It was the best!

Anyway, the first stop was Columbia, MO for a friend’s high school graduation. Noves offered to take the kids to the playground so that we could enjoy the ceremony. It was a great program and fun to cheer on a high school senior again! Afterwards was a party at the park, with every food you can imagine at a graduation party at the park. Deacon and Caleb made a beeline for the sandbox, which was full of dump trucks and diggers. He told me that he was going to “dump it in this one, then dump it into that one, and then dump it all into that one over there.”


After the party, we jumped back into the car and headed to Indy to see two sets of friends. The first set were our friends from the Philippines and had to welcome us at 2:30 am! ugh. We slept in (by “we,” I mean Noves and I. I think everyone else was up at the crack of dawn, including Josh), and then hung out with Daniel, Susan & family all morning. It was so great to catch up!

We left their place in the afternoon to go see Pat, Sarah, and family. We tried to meet up with them during our travels to and from NJ, but it never worked out, so we were thrilled to catch them this time around. The kids had a blast in their fun backyard and even went to Will’s school for some four-square competition. (Some things have changed since my elem four-square days, but most of it is still the same!)

That night, we got a priceline deal on a hotel a few hours away, closer to our Chicago destination for the next day. Josh made sure that it had a pool for the kiddos and a gym for us. The kids love being in hotels and it makes it so much fun for us to see their excitement! Noves and I took the kids swimming in the morning. I think Deacon has mostly forgotten how to swim. I think he’ll pick it back up in no time when we get back to the PI, but for now, he likes his tooties well planted on the pool floor!

After swimming and a workout, we all piled back into the car for the short drive to Evanston, right outside of Chicago. There, we went to the house of some new friends and their 3 beautiful girls. They had a zipline in their back yard, so as expected, most of the kids time was spent out there.


We demanded requested some deep dish pizza for dinner, so they obliged us with some Giordano’s. I meant to take a pic before I took a bite, but ooops!


It was SO. GOOD. ! I’m relocating to Chicago. ‘Nough said.

After pizza, ice cream. These people speak my love language!


The next morning, we headed to Navy Pier for some Chicago-y fun.


We went on the Ferris Wheel, but had to split up, so the boys were in one and the girls in the other.

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The kids were nervously excited the entire ride. Noves and I were laughing about how we can’t handle the rides and heights like we used to. Josh got off and said, “That was terrifying.”

Then the younger kids had a carousel ride while Mackenzie and I went on the flying swings.

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We took a cab over to Millennium Park so that we could take a millennium of pictures at the Bean. Here are some highlights.


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(weird) Art in the park…


On our walk back to Navy Pier, we took some pics by that river in all the Chicago movies.

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Josh took the kids back to the house so that Noves and I could walk around and shop at Navy Pier. It was terrific. Noves even bought Josh some chocolate-covered bacon! It was pretty yummy. Sweet chocolate followed by that bacon flavor that has us at “hello.”

When Caleb and Noves reunited, they cuddled right up together.


That night, we hopped back into the car and headed to my sister’s. We rolled in at 11:30pm, so we talked for a while, but then headed to our fourth bed in four nights. We got in all kinds of fun, family time the next morning and concluded it with a traditional family dinner at Red Robin. Of course, I have no pictures. Bummer….we had so much fun with them! Them are good people. I hate to say goodbye!

After 3 more hours in the car, we dropped Noves off at her house and then drove another 3 hours back here. sniff. So sad to start the goodbyes!  I know there are all kinds of funny anecdotes from our week, but to be honest, I’m too tired to relay them. I’m going to grab a few winks before starting this all over again bright and early tomorrow morn. G’night!


2 year old Bella

11 Dec

While I was organizing video clips on the computer, I came across a few that I never uploaded!

This is a gem of Bella when she was 2 years old. We were on our first furlough and she would sing “Jesus Loves Me” to us. It’s more like “Jesus…for Bible….little ones….arrrreeee.”



Where does the time go?!