God has us on a journey. One of adventure. Of learning. Of battles. Of love. Growth is this journey realized. So here is our story.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Guest blogger!

I am so happy to introduce my thoughtful, poetic husband Brandon today. I have told him since the beginning that he could write on here, and he has finally decided to take me up on it. Most people probably don't know that he is a lover of poetry and has written quite a few poems to date. Here is his very latest that he wrote during a crazy thunderstorm on our last camping trip:

True Connection

Where is our love in the midst of this concrete and landscaped complex?
Where are our hearts when protected by the walls and gates of our development?
Where is our connection when focused on the manicuring of our own landscapes?
Where is our refreshment when surrounded by the pounding heat and pressures of our lives?

Our hearts yearn for this love, this connection, this refreshment.
We steal away out of these confining walls, these perfectly manicured landscapes, the artificial solidness of the concrete, and the deadening heat of the valley sun.
We come to a place of true solidness
A land of rocks and giant pines that have a way of piercing and jolting our eyes, that have grown accustomed to man-made perfection.
We rise up out of the valley where the heat and pressure of our lives have no jurisdiction.
The peace and beauty of the mountain top forest gives our eyes the chance to see each other again.

But along with the peace and beauty of this natural place comes the power and clash of the storm.
As our walls begin to fall and our connection begins to seem possible the inevitability of the storm is upon us.
The wind picks up, the clouds start to build, and the thunder begins to crash!
The lightning strikes and seems to literally rip through the atmosphere that envelopes us and the walls that protected our hearts.
As the two distinct weather systems collide the rain starts to pour, the hail pounds, and the thunder rattles us to the bone.

At first we fear that we may not be able to withstand this intense collision,
but as we sit under the canopy of our love we know this storm is beautiful and wonderful.
The intensity and the power of this collision is simply a sign of the deep connection and inter-mingling of these two complex weather systems.

Before we know it the wind begins to calm and the sun starts to pierce the clouds.
The two distinct weather systems have seemed to merge.
This merge yields a beautiful warmth that glows deeply into the soul of a marriage.
A piercing sunlight that shines brightly through the clouds of a family and thaws the hearts of all those within.

Thank you Lord for connection.

Camping adventure #2

We had to go back for more. It was just too refreshing enjoying all the simple pleasures of being in the woods with my boys. So here's a little photo recap of our camping adventure last weekend. Same campground, same great weather (not too warm with daily thundershowers), with a few lessons learned from our first time around: a bike seat for Soren (because the bike trails are the best part), tarps for rain protection (and hail!), and a pack & play so Soren would actually nap and not play in the tent....Of course, Soren had to rock climb......And throw rocks off the cliff with Dada......He learned to say "what's up dude?" every time he put his hood on......Just too cool......The bike seat was a huge hit!......And here's 2 little videos to showcase our awesome views along the rim and Soren singing the entire ride!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Our simple getaway

We have to get away, we have to get away. This has been my summer mantra, for the obvious reason that Phoenix's average summer temp hovers around 110 degrees. And then when the monsoons come to town it gets crazy humid with that same heat. It's nasty. Brandon and I also realized that this is the first summer of our marriage where we both are working/doing school full-time. Can you believe that? We really should be so grateful that Brandon has always been on a 9-month school schedule and I have always held super flexible jobs that gave me time off in the summer. Summer is when we whisk ourselves away...to Europe, to Hawaii, on road trips...
Enough complaining. Our busy summer schedule and very limited funds have forced us to get back to our roots (roots of our marriage, that is) and enjoy one of life's simpler pleasures--camping!
It was Soren's first camping experience (we hadn't been for 3 years!) and he had an absolute blast. Setting up the tent, roasting marshmallows, sleeping in his own little sleeping bag, doing roadwork with Dad, hiking, and "mountain biking"...he's a natural camper, as we had hoped:-) We also finally learned why Soren was never that interested in his bike--he needed some obstacles like rocks and trails!
Our little mountain biker in the making...Brandon's heart couldn't be prouder. And I couldn't have been happier to escape the heat, the drudgery of school, and just be our simple family of 3.