Baby pictures and random musings

My mom posted a baby picture each of Greg and me on her blog. If you're wondering what our son may look like, these should give you a pretty good idea. We still have about 100 days, but Greg and I CANNOT WAIT TO MEET HIM! We will wait though.

In other news, Greg preached in church this morning. He did a marvelous job. I was inspired. Our church posts sermons on our website; I have no idea if the quality is good, but it should be there soon - http://www.hopefellowshipchurch.org.

And Greg and I watched the movie Julie and Julia tonight. As a blogger, someone who enjoys cooking for pleasure, and one who dreams of writing one day as well, I was thoroughly entertained by it. A warning though -- it is slow. Greg wasn't sure he'd make it through the entire movie. Oh, and DO NOT watch that movie hungry!


King Family Christmas

Greg and I packed for our trip to Baltimore in somewhat of a rush. On the way to the airport, I knew I had forgotten something. THE CAMERA! Ah! So I sadly do not have any grand pictures to share. This was my first time in Baltimore (that I can recall) and my first time to meet some of Greg's relatives. Definitely my first time to spend any significant time with them. (Our wedding didn't quite provide that.) It was really special to celebrate Christmas together in both his Grandmom and Granddad's homes, hear stories from Greg's childhood and his parents' as well. We enjoyed sharing a few hours with some uncles and aunts and cousins and just relaxing with family. I'm so thankful to have had the opportunity to be with the King family before welcoming our little son to the world. I have a feeling he might be the center of attention the next time we're able to visit Baltimore...

To all of our friends and family around the globe, we wish we could have spent significant time with you as well!

(The flight attendants are telling me its time to get off the computer now.)

Greg and I wish you all a belated merry Christmas. May the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ in our lives be your sustenance and your portion. In Him is the only true Life.


Winter Guide to Parking-Spot-Savers in Boston

Greg and I laughed quite a bit at this article from the Globe. Make sure you scroll through the pictures. This is most definitely what it is like in our neighborhood all winter. Enjoy!


Shameless plug for Tufts

Some of you may have watched an episode of two of the NBC show, The Sing-Off. Well, The Beelzebubs, Tufts' oldest all-male a cappella group, have made it to the finals, and it would be awesome if you would vote for them. Here they are singing "Sweet Caroline"...

Vote for the Bubs!
  • Call 1-877-6-SING-01 (1-877-674-6401)
  • Text 1 to 33088
  • Cast your ballot on NBC.com
You can vote 10 times per phone or e-mail address (30 times total). Voting ends Sunday, Dec. 20, at 9 a.m. EST.


23 weeks

A lot of growth from three weeks ago!
About a week ago, I had the first experience where two strangers congratulated me on my pregnancy; they were both nurses at a local flu clinic, but I was still impressed with their boldness to ask and congratulate. Many people at work and church are making comments such as, "Oh wow, you're really growing now!" And lots of belly rubbing going on in my life. How entertaining all of this is! Greg and I continue to express amazement and appreciation that God is choosing to sustain this little boy's life.


Not quite together

I will spare you all of the ways this has applied to me. Let's just say that Greg is immensely patient and forgiving and has had many laughs from my "baby brain" comments and actions.
(taken from BabyCenter.com)


Oh Istanbul

Something about the weather this morning made me feel like I was in Istanbul. Maybe it was the uncharacteristically balmy 60 degree temperature I enjoyed walking to work. Maybe it was the scent of the many shop and restaurant workers smoking outside their establishments. Maybe it was the sound of the cars honking or the buses passing by on the wet pavement. Or maybe it was the state of my heart and mind this morning.

Whatever it was, I was overcome with the desire to hop on a ferry to cross the Bosphorus and spend a few hours at my favorite park and tea garden in Moda (on the Asian side). I could practically taste the Turkish tea, feel the breeze as it blew the pages of my journal, see the islands peeking out of the glistening Marmara Sea, hear the seagulls barking and the children playing and chattering in Turkish at the nearby playground… Even though I wasn’t really there, for a couple minutes this morning, I was refreshed by recalling these welcome senses.

How I miss my beloved Istanbul…


Making himself known

Greg and I were up later last night than usual. Around midnight, I started to feel what I thought was our little boy moving around quite aggressively inside. I put my hand on my ever-increasing bump, and sure enough, he was pushing out all over the place. I excitedly grabbed Greg’s hand, and before he knew it, he was in awe at his son’s little pushes and kicks (or head butts or whatever he was up to). What a thrilling discovery! In retrospect, I have definitely felt him moving at other times over the past few weeks, but last night was the much anticipated confirmation everyone had assured me would come one day. A sweet answer to prayer.

In other news, Greg and I are pretty sure we’ve settled on a first name, and we’re trying out a few middle names, one being the definite favorite. I’ll have to check with him to see if he’s ready for me to share them with the world wide web yet. If you’re curious and just can’t wait until we share it online, ask one of us. I’ll give you a few hints – the first name starts with an N, has three syllables, and was originally a Hebrew name. The middle name is Turkish (though I think originally Arabic), has two syllables, and has a meaning that is particularly dear to my scholarly husband. :)


20 weeks

Since you all have been asking...
Here's my baby bump at 20 weeks.


Early Thanksgiving Dinner

Greg and I slaved away in the kitchen last night to prepare for our dinner party tonight. We are finally having our upstairs neighbors over for dinner. I had been struggling with knowing what to make these three Tufts international students -- two Frenchmen and one Turk -- but then we thought of creating a mini Thanksgiving feast. I had a blast last night (and Greg pretended to enjoy it even though it was not his idea of a fun evening) making pumpkin roll, baking a turkey breast, and prepping a handful of other dishes for tonight. I only had a few moments of freak-out as I thought about how incredible both French and Turkish cuisine are compared to my half-effort dinner. But Greg was quick to remind me that college boys are always happy for a free meal. Let's hope I don't offend their taste buds! Since Greg and I are going to Erie, PA this Thanksgiving to be with my family, it's fun still being able to host a piece of Thanksgiving in our home. I wish we could invite all of you over tonight! (But our little home will be packed to the max with five people!)

I can't wait to eat pumpkin roll!!!


Meet Baby King

Adorable facial profile picture
A cute little foot just waiting to be tickled
Can you guess the gender from this one?
(Hint: the picture is taken from below looking up.)
Meet our little boy at 18 weeks, 2 days
I think he looks like Greg!

We're so thankful for how God has sustained and grown this little guy thus far!


Oh if only we had backed up our computer...

Our other blog-worthy event from our trip to Nashville is that of our computer hard drive crashing. I tried all of the trouble-shooting suggestions online to no avail. In fact, I couldn't even find the hard drive to "repair" it as they were instructing. We took it in to the Apple store today, and they determined that the hard drive has a mechanical failure. Ugh! Our "Genius" (as they call the techies who help you at the store) was great, and after attempting to recover the data himself, he referred us to a couple companies to contact for more complex data recovery. He set us up for our free replacement as soon as we're ready. And he even suggested that NEXT TIME, we buy an external hard drive and back up our computer regularly. ha ha The thing is, we'd been planning to do just that for the last ten months. We had even decided which one to buy... But we mistakenly assumed that our computer was still new enough that we could safely put it off a little longer. Boy, were we wrong!

So from one blogger who has lost all pictures, music, documents, papers, financials, etc. to a friend who has hopefully not experienced this, I urge you with fervency to stop putting off your computer back-up and do it NOW. You will not regret it.

Airport Security?

Greg and I flew to Nashville on Wednesday for a conference. We had a great time reconnecting with some friends there and were thankful to be able to attend. Our stop-overs going and returning were both in Detroit, and we had a four hour lay-over on the way home on Friday. Greg's parents were able to pick us up in Detroit, and we had a wonderful dinner together at a nearby restaurant before heading back to the airport to return to Boston.

We had absolutely no trouble getting back in the Detroit airport, no problems with security. In fact, there was hardly anyone there at 8:00pm on a Friday, so we had 5-6 security officers assisting and chatting with us. As our plane was beginning to board, Greg and I pulled out our boarding passes to make sure we were sitting by each other. We were completely confused to not see our Detroit to Boston flight on my boarding pass. We knew we'd only received one boarding pass each so why were they different? I searched my bag for a second boarding pass, all the while knowing I didn't have one. But then I pulled one out of a book I had been reading on the last flight. We looked at the two boarding passes side by side and realized that I had gotten into the Detroit airport on the boarding pass of my seatmate from the prior leg!!! (Apparently I had picked it up and thought it was mine.) And you know what was even crazier than them not realizing my ID didn't match? My seatmate's trip ENDED in Detroit, so they shouldn't have even let me back in through the airport security on that boarding pass.

We were shocked, and I am still shocked as I write this. It definitely drives home the point that you really need to keep track of your boarding pass. It wouldn't be difficult for someone to fly as you!


Seeking your Baby Registry Advice

Okay, the time has come. With the holidays just around the corner (and mainly motivated by my family celebrating "Christmas at Thanksgiving"), Greg and I took the plunge and made a trip to Babies R Us yesterday.

This was actually our second trip. The first one was over a month ago, and I begged him to let us walk through the store once when we were shopping nearby. It didn't go so well. My marvelous husband made it through 1/3 of the store with me in about five minutes and had to run out to keep from hyperventilating. I can definitely understand his response -- the massive amounts of STUFF they're trying to sell us and the prices and the fact that he probably didn't know what half of it even was -- that's enough to make anyone hyperventilate.

Well, this time we did a little prep talking and set a 45 minute time limit and a goal -- open a registry and look at car seats and strollers. Greg was awesome, and we even had time to pick out a bjorn as well!

So here is the purpose of this post. I know a lot of you that follow us are parents, and we would love your advice on what items you think are necessary for a newborn. First though, you have to be aware of our situation. We live in a teeny tiny apartment (and will be here for at least the first few months with baby) without a washer and dryer or dishwasher (thus cloth diapers will have to wait). We already snagged a bassinet off Craig's List, so we're set with bedding. Finally, due to the ambiguity of our future, we are really trying to walk the route of simplicity and minimalism. Okay, knowing all that, what items do you suggest we include or not include on our registry?

We've already started one at Babies R Us if you want to see the tips we've received thus far. I found this post about items to include and this post about items not to include immensely helpful to get us started.

Bring on the advice!


Autumn Musings on an Odd Day

Last night, Greg and I decided to pull out the winter clothes. It has been quite chilly here recently, and we were both getting desperate for our sweaters and winter socks and coats. It was surreal for me to pack away all my summer clothes and realize that the next time I pull them out, I'll have a little one in in my arms...and somehow I doubt I'll be able to wear half of those clothes again!

This morning, we woke up to snow flurries! It was such a strange site, walking to work in the falling snow while the rows of trees along my walk were still green with only touches of autumn peeking about. I have been watching closely the row of trees along my walk, as it happens every year that suddenly one day I will look at them and find the most amazing display of colors. Today wasn't the day; they are still green. But that didn't seem to stop the snow.

We lost power at work today. Not just our building but a large portion of our city (Medford). Apparently some manhole covers near where we used to live were on fire, and somehow that caused the power to be lost for what they're now saying will probably be 8-10 hours minimum. Greg and I live less than half a mile from my office, but yet, here we are blessed with electricity. I am thankful. But I have to admit that I am more thankful for the extra few hours I have this afternoon to SLEEP (and blog).

Lastly, going back to yesterday, Greg and I were able to hear the amazing sound of our baby's heartbeat again. A month ago, it took our doctor a good minute or so to find this little one's heartbeat, but yesterday, he found it in a few seconds. Our little one seems to be developing well and healthily, something for which we are thankful and amazed. We're excited to find out whether I'm carrying a boy or girl in four weeks and bring home some pictures as well!


13 weeks down, 26+/- to go

We've been bursting to tell everyone, and we've finally made it to 13 weeks today! We're joyfully and hopefully expecting our first little baby boy or girl mid-April!

It has been quite a journey getting to this point, and though it was full of pain and much loss, we are so thankful for how the Lord has used the journey to conform us more to His image. We do not deserve this Life He gives, but we gratefully receive it as His gift of grace. Greg and I continue to pray that He will prepare us for this huge change and that He will enable us to show His love to this little one. We covet your prayers for and with us as we await our baby's arrival.

Because of our three prior losses, we were monitored closely during the first eight weeks, so we were able to have two ultrasounds very early on to see and measure the heartbeat and size. It was absolutely amazing to watch the tiny little dark spot on the screen pulsing with life.

We'll hopefully know whether it's a boy or girl just before Thanksgiving -- let us know what you think; vote in our poll on our blog!


Great Book in Turkish!

This is awesome news! Maybe I should pick up a copy and work on my Turkish that way...

We love Eden!

The video on this post is simply too cute. You have to watch it!

Ever since little Eden was born, she has stolen Greg's heart. I give her much of the credit for helping my husband want a little baby of our own one day soon.


Sonic has arrived

The trip up, waiting in line, ordering, eating, and returning only took three hours!

And here's proof that we survived:
Welcome to the land of amazing cherry limeades and 2-4pm Sonic Happy Hours, Boston!

(Sorry to rub it in, Carrie. Just another reason for you two to move to Boston! ;)


Thankful Thursday

Hmmm, you might just see a theme this week...

I am thankful for...
  1. Liz's hug today to encourage me to keep on.
  2. Steve's phone call this afternoon to make me laugh and let go of some of the stress.
  3. Dinner with Karen tonight to help me forget about work and share life with a dear sister.
  4. The hope that my office will hire someone in the next couple months to take some of the load off of the rest of us!
  5. The knowledge that I'll make it through this crazy month and probably look back and think, "Oh, that wasn't too bad." haha
  6. Music that calms my mind and heart and focuses me on the God of Peace.
  7. Sleep - and that's what I'm off to do RIGHT NOW!

4th Anniversary - 28 hours in NYC

Just over two months ago, we boarded a BoltBus to New York to celebrate our 4th anniversary.
We had lunch in Times Square.
We walked for hours around Central Park.

We had an incredible anniversary dinner in Hell's Kitchen -- 44&X.
Greg had a rack of lamb, and I had duck.
The bathroom at the restaurant was GORGEOUS. It had candles and roses everywhere!
We enjoyed a leisurely walk and took in the night lights on our way back to the hotel.
This is an awful picture of our hotel - the Grand Central Hyatt, but it really was amazing. What a gift!
The next morning we walked around some more.
We went down to Battery Park and saw the Statue of Liberty and the construction at Ground Zero.
And we stopped at the Starbucks by the Empire State Building on our way back to the bus.
It was a wonderful time to just be together, enjoy the city, and celebrate four amazing years of marriage.


Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for...
  1. The promise of a New England autumn. The oh-so-slightly cooler temperatures have given rise to great anticipation in our home. We LOVE autumn in Boston!
  2. Our church's generosity to children in need. Our annual Back-to-School Festival is this Saturday, and donations this year provide both backpacks and school supplies for neighborhood children as well as water bottles for children in Istanbul. Greg and I are thrilled about the added link to Turkey this year and the awesome opportunity to bless children in Istanbul and the work of the community center with which we partner.
  3. Watermelon - beautiful and delicious!
  4. A husband who loves languages just as much as (okay, even more than) I do! We stayed up way too late last night after having pulled out our Turkish language books around 9pm. Greg said he had a dream last night that we were living in Istanbul! :)
  5. How supportive and sacrificial my parents were in making it possible for me to go to Baylor. As I watched all the SUVs piled full of family and freshmen things pull into Tufts yesterday, I found myself reminiscing to move-in day my freshman year at Baylor, way back in 1999! Thanks, Dad and Mom, for going above and beyond your call (regularly) to enable me to follow the Lord where He leads me.
  6. Free access to a gym around the corner; working at a university and living close by definitely has its benefits.
  7. A much needed three day weekend!


Thankful Thursday

I hope you're not tired of these. I have ambitions to pull some pictures off our camera soon, but it's not going to happen today. So, on with the main attraction.

I am thankful for...
  1. A much needed three day weekend. This will be my last Friday off for a while. Summer is almost over.
  2. The strength to make it to Friday! September is going to be LONG; good, but very long.
  3. Panera Bread's broccoli cheddar soup and fresh lemonade. Yum!
  4. A good night's rest. I missed a few of those recently, and the last night I slept incredibly well was truly a sweet gift!
  5. The energy and life the college students are bringing back to campus and our neighborhood as they return. I'm sure this will become annoying quite quickly (when the loud music and frat parties keep us awake), but I really do love this time when they start trickling back and stopping by to say hi. Can you believe classes don't start here until the 8th?!
  6. The times my husband picks up his guitar and just plays and sings around the house for no other reason than because he loves to play.
  7. These 30 days of Ramadan in which I can join with many others around the globe to pray for God to reveal Himself anew to our beloved Muslim friends.


Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for...
  1. A safe trip last weekend to visit Drew & Carrie, Greg's parents, Scott & Robin, and Paul & Sheila. (Greg was able to visit some of his college friends as well -- Bryan, Elizabeth, and Huang.)
  2. Being able to pray in person with Paul & Shelia and Scott & Robin. How encouraging and life-giving that was!
  3. Greg's willingness to drive the more difficult portions of the trip; that 13.5 hours coming home was sooooo long!
  4. Clean clothes! Thanks, Drew & Carrie and Mike & Mary for letting us make ourselves at home with your washers and dryers.
  5. Other brothers and sisters in Christ who stand beside us and pray in faith for us when we are lacking the faith to go it alone.
  6. The White Mountains. Greg and I are hoping to squeeze in a day trip this weekend for some beautiful hiking and cooler temperatures! They're not the Rockie's, but they're still beautiful.
  7. A wonderful window A/C unit which has been well worth the expense on the unbearably hot days earlier this week.
I know I need to add some pictures, but that's more than I can handle right now, AND I forgot our camera on our trip! Ah!


Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for...
  1. My husband's amazing homemade smoothies. I admit they're much better for me than the chocolate malts I like to make. (But they're not quite Jamba Juice.)
  2. A job that is cyclical. I love change, so having work responsibilities completely change every couple months is refreshing!
  3. Hope that is ever constant, never failing -- grounded in the promises of my God and fulfilled through my Lord, Jesus Christ.
  4. Healthy plants that truly brighten a room.
  5. A few minutes to chat on the phone this afternoon with my friend Jennifer in Turkey.
  6. Friends at work who make my 9-5 just that much better.
  7. A car that, though it is old ('96), will (hopefully) take us to Erie, PA; Novi, MI; and Ann Arbor, MI this weekend.
(Apparently, you're supposed to write seven, not ten. ;)


Draw Me Nearer

I've recently been finding much meaning in this song by Meredith Andrews. I couldn't find it on youtube, so for now, I'll just share the lyrics.

For your nearness Lord I hunger
For your nearness Lord I wait
Hold me ever closer Father
Such a love I can’t escape

For your nearness I am hoping
For your nearness Lord I long
Have no need of any other
I have found where I belong
Yes, I have found where I belong

So draw me nearer Lord
Never let me go
Closer to your heart
Draw me nearer Lord
Draw me nearer Lord

In your nearness there is healing
What was broken now made whole
Restoration in its fullness
Lasting hope for all who come

In your nearness I take shelter
Where you are is where I’m home
I have need of only one thing
To be here before your throne
To be here before your throne

So draw me nearer Lord
Never let me go
Closer to your heart
Draw me nearer Lord
Draw me nearer Lord

And keep me here, keep me here
There’s nowhere else I'd rather be
So keep me here, keep me here
There’s nowhere else I'd rather be
There’s nowhere else I'd rather be

So draw me nearer Lord
Never let me go
Closer to your heart
Draw me nearer Lord
Draw me nearer Lord
Draw me nearer my Lord


Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for...
  1. Drinkable tap water (after a little filtering).
  2. An employer within a few minutes walk from home. I love having the ability to go home for lunch!
  3. My husband who gets excited with me about starting a family one day. This has been long coming, but Greg diligently sought the Lord and is now excited to some day be a daddy.
  4. Incredible health care and access to some of the best specialists in the world.
  5. Friends and family who are joining us in asking the Lord for a child.
  6. Fresh fruit, especially strawberries and pineapples and grapes as of late.
  7. Nick & Deb who live around the corner from us.
  8. Seasons. Or rather, I'm thankful that winter does not last forever.
  9. Access to the ocean. We don't get there as often as I would hope, but just having that sea air waft our way is wonderful.
  10. A great bike path near our house which just happens to go right by my favorite pizza place.


Tribute to Steve

Three of my co-workers at the 2008 Tufts Career Fair
Debbie, Steve, & Janine

Today is my teammate's last day at work. He will be greatly missed, more than he can probably imagine. He's been an incredible teammate, always full of creative ideas and more than willing to do what it takes to implement them. I will miss him for all that he has taught me, from the little things like specific html coding (aw, Frontpage) and online tools (*wink*), to the big things like showing me by example how to strengthen our client relationships with a unique balance of professionalism and friendliness. I will miss him for the laughter he brings to our office, the jokes and sarcasm and smiles that are often abundant. And I will miss him for the many deeper conversations that were peppered over the past two years, about our spiritual beliefs and questions, our families, our ideals, our hopes.

Steve, if you're reading this, know that I'm excited for this next step for you. I have no doubt it has all come about by the hand of God, and I have no doubt He will use you to change lives in this next job (including yours). You are missed already.

My prayer for you, brother --

"For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the believers, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge--that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen." Ephesians 3:14-20


Our Boston, Off to New York

Greg and I are on a bus to New York City! Yea!!! (BoltBus is definitely the way to go; wireless internet, electrical outlets, and a clean and comfortable vessel.)

We recently drove past the Charles, and I watched the rowers and kayak-ers enjoying their early morning exercise. Something about the beauty (and quietness) of Boston in the early morning hours made me reflective and reminiscent. I started thinking about how much I will miss Boston when we leave one day. (We have no idea when that will be, but it's likely to happen.) I realized that I've now lived in Boston longer than I lived in Waco, TX and Istanbul, Turkey. I've been at my current job for three years now (to the date), longer than I've ever worked anywhere. We've really put down some deep roots here with friends who have walked with us through some really trying and celebratory times, and us with them as well. I actually started to cry as our bus moved on and the Charles was no longer in sight.

But then I thought about how this next year in Boston will greatly deepen the relationships we have here, how we'll meet even more new people and have the privilege of helping them make a home here in Boston, and how we'll make lifelong memories together of our fifth year of marriage and fourth year in Boston. And I smiled.

But enough about Boston. We're off to the Big Apple, and I'm giddy with excitement. Have I mentioned that we get to stay at the Grand Hyatt tonight for free?!?! Yep, I actually WON a free night at any Hyatt in the world! We have a dinner reservation at 44&X in Hell's Kitchen. (Thanks, Steve, for the recommendations!) We plan to have lunch at the Olive Garden when we arrive in a few hours. (I know, it's a little lame to go to a chain restaurant. But I absolutely LOVE Olive Garden's salad and bread sticks, and we don't have one close to us.) And we'll spend most of the afternoon traipsing around Central Park, 5th Avenue, and wherever else we choose to explore.

Oh, and to all of you dear friends in New York, I'm so sorry we can't visit you this time. We're barely there for a day, but next time we'll look you up!


Happy 4th, Love!

Four years ago today, I committed to love you and
stand beside you for as long as we both shall live.
I could never ask for a better best friend.
You inquire, listen, share, lead, apologize, forgive,
laugh, cry, sing, and dream with love.I know with full confidence that you will stay with me
no matter what comes our way.
Thank you for loving me through it all.
I love you more than ever before.

Happy 4th Anniversary, Greg!

A Baker's Dozen + 1, Colorado Pictures

I've been putting off choosing pictures to blog from our Colorado family vacation for weeks now. But I finally decided today to just choose a dozen pictures and let that be all. So here goes. (How am I going to choose just twelve?!)

We stayed in a ski condo near Winter Park (in Fraser). It was the perfect set-up for three couples - 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms. The view of the mountains was breathtaking.

This picture's actually in Rocky Mountain National Park though.
Family picture
(Drew, Dad, Greg
sis Carrie, Mom, me)
Family picture, not so composed
We had the perfect mix of activity and relaxing. Greg took a little time to study, we all watched a decent amount of TV, naps were taken... But we also hit the Winter Park alpine slide, crossed whitewater rafting off our bucket list (picture above), and well, I'll let you see the rest in pictures.

The girls (hmmm, do we look alike?)

The boys (4-wheeling in Rocky Mountain National Park)
The boys' view on the trail,
looking down on Grand Lake
(where the gals were shopping)

Drew & Carrie
We went downhill mountain biking at Winter Park.
It was awesome, but our dear friend, Aubrea, tumbled and broke her clavicle!

My amazing and incredibly generous parents
(waiting for our fish tacos - they were delicious!)
Mom's first excursion on a ski lift

Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park
(we even saw a couple moose!)
Family hike at the Y
Dad & me at the top of the waterfall
Greg and me, facing off in archery
(I won!!! But I won't rub it in.)
Greg learning to fly fish at the Y lake

The gorgeous Y lake

What an amazing vacation! Such incredible time together as family and a great break from our responsibilities back at home. Thanks, Dad & Mom, for making this happen!

Well, I ALMOST did it. A baker's dozen + 1.

Setting Captives Free

I just received word of two incredible rescues which happened last night in two countries. "As a result of last night’s [International Justice Mission] operations, 27 children and young women are now free, and eleven perpetrators are in police custody. The conditions in these brothels were cruel and brutal, but these girls and young women are now safe and the journey toward full justice has begun."

Click here to read a short blog entry about these amazing success story.


Back from our Colorado vacation and...

It's been over a month since I've posted anything on our blog. My Google Reader tells me I have 200 unread posts to catch up on. (That's a lot for me!) My home inbox is bursting with unread messages (and that's after deleting all the unimportant stuff). And I haven't really looked at Facebook for who knows how long. Where do I begin?!

I think I'll have a bowl of ice cream and pull out some books I'm reading. But don't you worry, all you fellow bloggers; I will read your posts soon. Just give me a few more days. I'm still pretending I'm on vacation.

Good ol' chocolate ice cream, The Pursuit of God, My Utmost for His Highest, and 2 Corinthians...here I come.


Canoeing on the Charles and Yeni Arkadaslik

Greg and I had a fun excursion Saturday morning with some new friends from the Boston Turkish Cultural Center. We went canoeing on the Charles! Here are a few pictures from our morning together.
Note the short sleeved shirt I'm wearing -- I have a nice sunburn line to match that shirt now. Ugh!
The group after our outing. We're really looking forward to spending more time with some of these new friends in Boston!


Kim singing "Soon"

Greg bought the new Hillsong United album today, and I really liked one of the songs. I decided to spend a little time tonight learning it, and I had a blast recording my efforts on GarageBand. I couldn't figure out an easy way to play the audio file on my blog (anyone know an easy way? i kept running into a Plugin issue), but you can listen to me here.

Apparently the file will be deleted in sixty days if no one listens to it, so listen to it in the next few days if you want to hear it. Let me know what you think of the song.

Things to ignore: the loud background buzz, the constant squeak of my keyboard pedal, the clicking when I adjust the computer volume, and the general inconsistency of the volume... Other than all that, ENJOY!


Relaxing by the River

After a delicious breakfast of waffles, bacon, and eggs, Greg and I went to River's Edge Park for a couple hours today. We had a lot of fun tossing a frisbee and playing catch, watching the swans and geese on the Malden River, and laying in the shade reading by the river. I wanted to share a couple pictures. It was so nice to take time to relax today!