Monday, June 22, 2009

PHF Reunion

This past weekend, we were very blessed to be able to attend the Philip Hayden Foundation Reunion at sponsored by Salem Church of God in Clayton, OH.  It was the midway point and reason for my whole road trip.  Troy flew up on Friday and we met him at the hotel LATE Friday night.  

On Saturday, the church hosted a picnic and playtime for the kids.  There were fun jumps, water games, snowcones, casting/fishing, etc!  What a WONDERFUL time we all had finally getting to meet people that we had emailed and chatted online with!  

Tim Baker and ShuangShuang

The PHF crew--We finally got to meet people in person who were very important on our journey to Shuangshuang--especially Leah!

The girls are making cross and bead necklaces!  
Too cool to watch Shuangshuang stringing beads!

Baba and his 2 princesses eating snowcones--daddy's just AWESOME!

Our family and Tim's family (minus a couple).  
Thank you, Tim and Pam Baker, for all that you do to care for the orphans!

Everyone who attended the reunion--families, PHF staff and volunteers, and the amazing volunteers from Salem Church of God!

Hanging out before church

Oh my word, this was more than any of us could bear, to be there when Chris and Jocelyn thanked Salem Church for raising the funds to allow Elijah to have his heart surgery!!  
Even better was to hear Elijah take the mic and thank them himself!  
This is what started the waterworks!

This was one of the most awesome experiences--to gather as a group of PHF families to be prayed over and to sing "He Knows My Name" while watching a slideshow of PHF children!  There was not a dry eye in the crowd!

Notice me sopping up my tears in the center of the picture--Heather, thanks for warning me to bring tissue!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The best husband in the world

Have I mentioned that I have the BEST husband in the whole wide world?  He is the most amazing man, husband, and father.  Thanks, honey, for letting me take the kids on this trip!  They (we) are having an AWESOME time!  We love you and miss you!

Monday, June 15, 2009

First day of dance camp with Caroline

This is the reason we left early for the PHF reunion!  It just so happened that Steps of Faith dance camp coincided with the week before the reunion.  We'll stay here through Friday and then drive on to Ohio.  Shaoey had a fantastic first day.  Her 2 favorite things today were snacks and tap shoes!  Both sound fun to me...

USS Alabama and USS Drum

We are headed to Julie's today in GA.  We planned a side trip to the USS Alabama and USS Drum in Mobile, AL.   We've passed it many times on the way to Destin, but have never actually stopped in.  It was a cool trip!  You actually get to go down into the ship and the submarine.  You could easily get lost, it's such a maze of openings, rooms, stairs, etc!  

USS Alabama

The Brig...

Can you imagine sleeping here?

Navigation room

The USS Drum (Submarine)


CGG Reunion

The girls and I flew to NJ for a ChattyGirl reunion.  These are some of my closest and dearest friends.  We all adopted around the same time in late 2006/early 2007.  We email daily and try to get the girls together ever chance we have.    We stayed our Laura's house at the shore.  The girls all got along so well!  They played and sang and danced and ate all weekend long!  

The first day there it rained and rained and rained 
so we stayed home and let the girls hang out and it gave us a chance to catch up.  

The weather cleared up on Saturday so we walked to the shore and let the girls
play in the sand and water.  Did I mention the water was COLD?  
Shuangshuang only wanted to go in the water.  She loved it!

Kate, Claire, Anna Claire, Lucy, Shuangshuang, Shaoey, Emily, and Mia

Saturday night we took the girls to the Boardwalk for RIDES!  Shaoey was SO excited!  When she'd get off one ride, she would run to the next one.  Shuangshuang was a bit more reserved...  she screamed her way through the carousel.  She warmed up a little as the night wore on.

Eating Zeppoles at the Boardwalk!  Yummy!

Laura, Pam, Claire, Charlene, Nichole, and Keri 
(BTW, we also spent Saturday celebrating Claire's new referral!!!)

Two VERY tired little girls!  We carried them in and put them straight to bed.