Monday, May 30, 2016

P4O retreat

2016 - Beaver Creek, Colorado.
It worked so well last year ... we're going to do it again!  and again, and again.
The Charter, every year.

We have aligned the planning team - Bethel, Erin, Rebecca, and myself.
Amanda will help - and will emcee.
Celina has all but phased out.

We have a aligned the speakers.
Sophie Hartman is a young, single, adoptive mom.  She lives a life of radical faith as she steps out in obedience to God .. to follow His lead, wherever He will take her!
Linny Saunders is a seasoned mom, having adopted 11 of their 14 kids, many of whom have significant health issues.

Then, we have the storytellers.
I've asked Bethel and Erin.
I don't know who else yet, but God will make it clear.

I'm super excited about this year.
I love this retreat.
It's a life source for me.
I love the ladies.
I love the focus.
I love the location.

Our 5th retreat ... and counting.
I pray that God will bring more and more ladies to us.
I pray for radical growth!

Friday, May 20, 2016

Awana Awards

We just finished another year of Awana ...
with 2 in Sparks, 1 in T&T, and 1 in Trek.

Unfortunately, Aspen Ridge does not have a Trek and Journey program.
So, Shiloh was a volunteer in the Sparks room.
While she was ok with it, I struggled with the unwillingness of the church to offer a program.
The only program is on a Tuesday night (another night of the week).
That makes me grumpy.

I also found that Shiloh wasn't quite as motivated to stay on top of the memory/ book work.
But ... she did finish her book!  She's a hard worker!

Awana also gave us a place to build some relationships.
Many of the CC moms also do Awana. 
I love Awana.  I plan to continue, despite the different program.




Thursday, May 19, 2016

A Surprise Trip - Day 5

Following on the tails of a beautiful day ...
we awoke to rain!  Sheets of rain!
While we debated touring Williamsburg, the rain made that decision for us.

So, we packed up our things, then headed over to the outlets to get Shiloh a new pair of Crocs.
(Her tennis shoes made walking long distances a challenge.)
Then ... we set out soon our drive back to the DC area.

We thought about going to Mount Vernon, but in the rain?
So, we texted Jodi Novak, who had lived in DC for quite some time ...
and she said GO!
(Both Jodi and I went to the Gettysburg leadership conference with Jay Lorenzen ... and walked in the rain for days!  After all, a little rain never hurt anyone, right?)

Our Garmin sent us to the wrong place, which set us back about an hour.
But we still had about 2 hours at Mount Vernon.  It was just right.
I'm so glad we went, as we made the best memories ... walking around George Washington's estate in the rain!  It was the perfect end to a really great trip.










A Surprise Trip - Day 4

With Yorktown and Jamestown just a short drive from Williamsburg ...
we decided to visit these historic sites.
Shiloh loves the story of Pocahontas, so it was fun to see where she lived for a time.

I was surprised to find that very little of the original settlement remains.
There is only 1 brick tower from the original church that still stands.
They have been doing much archeological digging and have found the original burial sites for those that died during the winter.  They have also found original homes, and have marked them with elevated bricks to mark where they would have stood.














I also found a boat ride in Jamestown ... sailing down the river.
Or more like ... floating, as there wasn't much wind.

We had a nice lunch ... and then floated for a couple of hours.
It was a perfect day for a boat ride!



Our lunch spot 




A Surprise Trip - Day 3

On Sunday, we set out for Williamsburg.
I had purchased the Passport to Purity CDs, so our driving time was spent listening to those, and discussing the content.  It was probably one of my favorite parts of the entire trip.



We got to Williamsburg much later than I expected.  Then, there was a graduation at William and Mary College which made getting to the heart of the historic part of town a challenge.  By the time we got there, it was closing in just under 2 hours.  Much to my disappointment, tickets were outrageous at $40 / adult and $20 / child.  It was free to walk through main street, but the tickets get you into most of the buildings to interact with the people in costume.  Shiloh didn't seem super committed to going inside, so we just walked around for a bit.

Williamsburg is certainly a very quaint little town.
It has so much charm and character.






This big, fat bear stood in front of the store where we bought Shiloh a purity ring.
Even though we may not have toured Williamsburg, she got some fun souvenirs from there.


A Surprise Trip - Day 2

On Saturday, we caught the Metro into D.C. and took a double decker bus tour around the city.



Naturally, getting anywhere takes 5x longer than we expected.
So, we didn't get on the bus until almost 11am.
We had a great tour guide.
Shiloh wasn't thrilled about lots of walking, since she didn't have the best walking shoes.
(In fact, we ended up getting her a new pair of Crocs in Williamsburg)
 








After a couple of hours, we were ready for lunch ... at Hard Rock Cafe!
Unfortunately, rain drove us back to the hotel.
We hung out in the room, with our microwave popcorn, and High School Musical.

Incredible! ... just in front of Hard Rock.