Tag Archives: Christmas

Homework or……

Homework – Shomwork. Let’s get to those cute babies, right?  (I’m pretty sure the homework police can’t find me here, anyway!)

Ah, yes – the Grand Tour!  Louisiana to Lancaster (PA), to Gahanna (OH) to Marysville (OH) and then back to Louisiana (Eunice, to be exact!). 3045 Miles.  So many miles. And so many smiles!
First up was this beautiful family! We hadn’t seen these guys since last summer – and that is way too long! Our time together was too short (and the big camera never even got out of the car) so there just aren’t a lot of pictures. But trust me – this was a precious visit indeed!

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Before we get to see them again a baby brother will be added to the family! We’re so excited for them – and so happy that they were the first stop on The Grand Tour!
From there it was west to Gahanna, OH – and these dear ones-
Ack – that little Alexandra has grown so much (she’s a whopping three months old now!) and is such a delight!
Lara and I were able to steal away for some girl time – oh, so precious!
(The fact that it involved some great post-Christmas bargains and a quick stop at Shake ‘N Shake only added to the joy!)
New Years Day was our official “Ohio Christmas” and Toby and Tammy and family joined us in Gahanna for a day of wonderful family chaos!
This is as close as I came to getting all the kids into one picture! If you include all of the legs/feet in view I think they are all accounted for.
The “big” camera did make it in from the car for this celebration and it was available for anyone to use. You just never know what you’ll find when the pictures are downloaded!


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While most of the gift giving was centered around the kiddos, Lara did find a pretty special item for Gary –
Love it!
We missed our Lancaster family, but the day was filled with love and laughter, games and giggles, and too much food. A wonderful, wonderful day!
After our celebration we packed our bags for our final destination – Marysville and the very busy Conrad Seven!
We broke out the dress up clothes that I’d been collecting for them and had some quality fantasy time.
OK, so Reis wasn’t so interested in the dress up clothes, but he sure had some fun with his dad a little later on!

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We got the whole family together one more time for a joint Birthday Bash and enjoyed some black light miniature golf.

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Who knew there was even such a thing as black light miniature golf?  A good time was had by all (and Eleana even won a free game by getting a hole in one on the last hole.)

And just a couple more favorites –

Man, I love these folks! We were so blessed to be able to spend time with each of these families and found that each mile driven was totally worth it! You know there are more pictures, so if you’d to see more of these beautiful people you can check out the whole album HERE!  You know you want to!

Now about that Homework. Just so you don’t think I’m totally derelict in following through on my Blogging 101 assignments, I thought I’d list them out so you can see just how I’m doing.
Monday’s assignment: write and publish a “who I am and why I’m here” post. Check.
Tuesday’s assignment: edit your title and tagline. Since this class is geared towards new bloggers, I wasn’t sure that I needed to actually do this. I mean, it’s been over 10 years that I’ve written as RV There Yet. I think changing it at this point would be confusing (to me if no one else!). I’m also pretty happy with my tagline – Seeing the country, Serving the Lord. I’ll give it some additional thought, but I think I’m OK.
Wednesday’s assignment: follow five new topics in the Reader and five new blogs. Man. One thing I haven’t had a lot of this week is spare time to do much blog surfing, but I did look at a few. Maybe I can check out a couple more next week.
Thursday’s Assignment: publish a post for your dream reader, and include a new-to-you element in it. OK, I really fell short on this one. First, deciding who my dream reader is (isn’t it you?) and second trying to figure out the “new-to-you” element aspect. Again, it’s that time thing.
Friday’s assignment: try out at least three other themes — even if you’re happy with the one you first chose. Try one you’re drawn to, and one you would never use. Again – I’m pretty happy with the way the blog looks, but I’m not adverse to checking out some new ideas. See above excuse.

Thankfully we have the weekend “off”, so if nothing else I’ve had a chance to organize how much I haven’t gotten done.  But I’ve appreciated all of the ideas of this class AND the fact that no one is collecting these homework assignments.  To those who have commented – thank you for your input!  I think I’ll keep pressing on with these assignments – couldn’t hurt, right?

Have a great week, everyone! We start our project work tomorrow so it will be an interesting and full day for us.

So much for the spare time, right?

Happy New Year!!!

I know, I know – it’s already January 7th so the whole “Happy New Year” chant is already a bit old! What was New Year’s Day to most of you was Christmas Morning to our family. The best part of our holiday season just wrapped up on Sunday, and I’ve been busy playing catch-up ever since. Oh, and going through the 650+ pictures that I took over the course of those 6 days! Did you remember that I was busy loving on the folks I hold most dear in this world?  We had an wonderful week full of hugs and kisses, giggles and games, and baby snuggling and gift exchanging. When you throw in a birthday luncheon, a rock climbing adventure and a blizzard, well, the whole week was just about perfect. I really did take over 650 pictures, whittled them down to around 200 and then tried to pull out just my very most favorite. I got it down to under 50 and believe me, I feel pretty good about that! 🙂
Here is just a small taste of our Family Christmas –

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And of course, if you want to see the rest of the story, from airport to airport, (including the full size photos of any of those above) you can check out the complete set HERE!

I still have a couple of “New Years-y” thoughts to share, but I think they will wait until tomorrow.  All this picture sorting is exhausting!

Stay warm, everyone!  I hear the Arctic Vortex is headed home! And not a moment too soon, right?

Making the best of it…..

Since we wouldn’t be spending Christmas day with our kids and grands (although there are only 5 more sleeps till we’ll be there, hugging their necks!) we decided to plan something special for the day. We packed up our favorite picnic goodies, loaded up the folding chairs and headed to the beach! Fortunately, there IS one only about a hour and a half away!
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South Padre Island – here we come!
The weather was a bit on the cool side (though compared to Minnesota, I guess it would seem quite tropical at 65!) and the sky was more overcast than sunny, but still we had a lovely day!
Did you know that all public beaches in Texas are also considered public roads? Yes, for a small fee ($5.00), you can drive right down the beach. Crazy, isn’t it!?
Yes friends and family, we're driving on the beach on Christmas  day! Merry Christmas, everyone!
While we were looking for the perfect picnic spot, we did spot some hardy folks taking their Christmas swim –
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but I confess there was never even a moment that I wanted to join them. They were very young. Or very crazy!
We passed lots of fishermen, including these guys who definitely weren’t in the very young department,
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so they must have been in the very crazy group. Brrrrr…. (and put a shirt on for goodness sake!!)
It was really neat to just drive down the beach
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and we finally came to the spot that Gary deemed the perfect truck-bed picnic spot.
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It was early for lunch, so Gary got all settled in with a book and I set off with my camera to try and capture the day. First I headed back toward the dunes –
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Sand is so incredibly fluid, isn’t it? Does that make any sense?
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After a bit of dune exploring, it was back to the waves for me!
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(Just as a side note – this is a such beautiful area it was distressing to see so much trash peeking up through the sand or mixed in with the shells. Grrrrrrr.)
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And another young/crazy person in the water. Christmas tradition, maybe?
Although I love the big picture shots
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I also love getting up close and personal with some of the interesting things along the shore –
There were lots of the beautifully colored Portuguese Man O Wars washed up (another reason why staying out of the water (in my mind) was a good idea!)and the little shells stuck to the branch had something moving inside of them. Every now and again an “arm” would stick out!
As I was headed back to the truck
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the trusty phone rang and we got to do some Face Time with T&T and the Ohio grands.
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Ah sweet technology!
After that came lunch! And with lunch came the neighborhood seagulls!
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Whatcha got? Huh, huh, anything for us??????
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Such fun company!
As the clouds thickened,
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it seemed time to get things packed up and head back to the paved road.
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I did have to make it very clear that regardless of who CAN park on this beach, we were NOT going to bring Lizzie with us next time. No sirree, that isn’t going to happen on my watch!
We decided to drive to the end of the road (going north), but we were glad their wasn’t too much traffic –
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since there wasn’t too much road available!

It was a really fun day! Just enough 4-wheel-driving to make it interesting, but not too much risk of needing a tow! Lots of fun with the camera (and practice with my new 50mm lens I got for Christmas :)) and perfect timing with the weather –
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Add in calls from all the kids and then home in time for a quick nap before we indulged in leftover picnic goodies for dinner (i.e. I didn’t have to cook!) and it can be firmly stated that it was a fine day. Not a traditional Christmas in any sense of the word, but one that we are very thankful for nonetheless! Hoping that yours was filled with joy also!

(I won’t even confess to the number of pictures that were taken today, but along with the ones in this post there are just a couple (;)) more HERE! I really pared it down, honest!)

Christmas – a Labor of Love

Christmas Greetings, friends! This song, written by Andrew Peterson, has spoken to my heart over the years. Amidst all of the glitter and goodness of our Christmas traditions, it’s always good to remember that it was ‘not a silent night’ when the King of the universe entered this messy world to rescue us! May the wonder of that day bless you this day.

It was not a silent night
There was blood on the ground
You could hear a woman cry
In the alleyways that night
On the streets of David’s town

And the stable was not clean
And the cobblestones were cold
And little Mary full of grace
With the tears upon her face
Had no mother’s hand to hold

It was a labor of pain
It was a cold sky above
But for the girl on the ground in the dark
With every beat of her beautiful heart
It was a labor of love

Noble Joseph by her side
Callused hands and weary eyes
There were no midwives to be found
In the streets of David’s town
In the middle of the night

So he held her and he prayed
Shafts of moonlight on his face
But the baby in her womb
He was the maker of the moon
He was the Author of the faith
That could make the mountains move

It was a labor of pain
It was a cold sky above
But for the girl on the ground in the dark
With every beat of her beautiful heart
It was a labor of love
For little Mary full of grace
With the tears upon her face
It was a labor of love