Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Taste of Home

Sometimes it's the little things...

like finding familiar things in a candy store
(or calling it a 'candy store' and not a 'lolly shop.'  Hey, is that Captain Crunch?)

and knowing what they'll taste like before I buy them
(yeah, some of those 'regular' sized candies are nearly $3, it's only a rare treat!)

and seeing foods that bring back childhood memories
(what!?! are those Pop Tarts over $3 for a two pack?? yes, yes they are.)

This lolly shop I 'discovered' on a work trip to Sydney.  It was bittersweet discovery.  While it was fun to see so many candies and foods from 'home', it made me miss so many other things.  And yes, for those that know me, I did end up teary-eyed.  I called 'home' and cried a bit... 

 Then, I wandered the shop, smiled at all the familiar sights, reminisced a bit, and walked away without buying a thing.  ...this time... 

What do you think you would miss?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Lining Up?


Can you see it?

In the picture, what do you see? 

No, not the cute one in braids making a funny face at me...
(but if you're wondering, she gets that from her brother!)

Look again...
(did you?  Really, look at the pic)

They're lining up to the door for a Slurpee!  :-)  

And what's even better... this is in my 'suburb'.  :-D  WooHoo!
okay, so it's a bit of a walk, but I can drive there in two minutes.  

Yay for 7/11's in Wollongong!!
Yay for one opening near me!

Yay for beating the line!

Now, who wants to come share a Slurpee?!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Feelin' Blue...

Darian was feeling a little blue...  If you've seen recent pics, you'll know that this has washed out... but for those far away, it might be fun to see these... 

What can I say?
Have you ever tried to take a picture of D?
It's not an easy task.  He's got impressive timing.

Trying again.
A good shot of the hair colour at least.

Strike three?
Yet antoher face... but a good shot of the blue hair.
(it was easier to adjust to the blue than the bleached blonde)

Already washing out a bit.
Personally, I like the two tone look... would have worked well for my old high school, as it does with the U of M shirt he's wearing.  
(notice the netball games going on in the back ground... good Aussie pastime!)

Never thought I'd have a blue haired child... but hey, guess I lost my vote a long time ago.  ;-)  And I'm slowly realizing that's a good thing.  :-) 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Voices in my Head

Okay, so they're not really in my head, but on the screen.  However this voice is more real, more honest, more positively transparent than any I've heard.  It's refreshing.  It's inspiring.  It's healing and hopeful. to me.

The thoughts in this post resound with my soul.  They shout and scream.  Often, I feel the power and insight in what she writes.  This one is no different.  Or perhaps it's different by being more clear and true. 

Have a 'listen'.  Or don't.  

One Jesus - Jamie, The Very Worst Missionary 

What do you think?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Minamurra Rainforest Walk

About once a month, I have a bonus day off from work.  Actually, I work an extra half-hour each day so I can have the RDO (rostered day off).  It's part of the company I work for.  I like it!  

I've been able to curl up with a book, catch up with friends, extend a long weekend, and stroll through the markets.  Plus, some days I get to hang with my sweetheart! :-)

Here's some pics from our most recent adventure....

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Family Day

One of our favourite family haunts is Shellharbour Village, just south of where we live.  It was one of the first places Shawn and I visited when we checked out the area in 2007.  We stayed in a caravan park that's just off the shore of some of these shots. 
I love that our kids are still okay with hanging out with the family now and again.  However, it's not unusual for out house to be quiet and without kids more and more often.  I'm not sure I'm ready for this stage of life. 

We started out the afternoon by enjoying some fish and chips at a nearby shop.  Still searching for the best spot to get fish and chips... this wasn't bad, but there's better in Kiama.  If you don't believe me, come check it out yourself! ;-)

Family shot... 
on a very blustery day. :-)

 at the harbour.

 Trying to push Dad over...
I love these Daddy & daughter shots.

 Making D have a photo with me.
And he's smiling!!  :-)  Bonus!
I really like the angle on this pic... don't look so short here.

 Father and son.

 Me and my girl!  
Such a beauty!  :-)

I was laughing 'cuz the wind was causing havoc!

 Precious siblings.
my how they've grown....

 Ninja moves on the rocks.
Silly kids!
Love that!!  :-)

 B trying to be the 'bigger' sibling.
and D just going along with the fun.

 The slow motion race...
...or just being obnoxious because someone was taking so many pictures.
now who would that be??

heading home...

Monday, September 19, 2011

walking away

The last year has been a hard one for me.  There has been a feeling of betrayal, confusion and pain.  Through it I have struggled in my 'walk with God.'

Recently, I've been thinking...
If you walk away from church, does that mean you're walking away from God?  Now, I know that some folks will resoundingly say 'YES!' from the top of their lungs.

But, what if the 'church' walked away from you first?
Does that change anything?  What if, a group of people you've loved, worshiped with, and committed to just decided that you weren't what they wanted anymore and cut their ties?  Of course, it would be in a loving, sweet worded manner.  There would be lots of proper things said, but the message was still clear enough, you're not accepted as you are.

Then what?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Gypsy Girl

Last week for school, B had a 'Medieval Day' and got to dress the part.  She's made a great 'Gypsy Girl'.

Here's a couple shots.  :-)
Close up.
Such a beautiful smile.
Lovin' all those colors.  
... and the layers too

Posing with a bit of flair.
Love this girl!

And, she wore this outfit to the shops twice!  So fun!  :-)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

On a cold, wintry day

It happened last Monday, on a cold, wintry, rainy day.  A day where you'd like to stay inside curled up by a fire with a good book and a warm tea. 

But those weren't the plans we had for last Monday.  Instead, after a nice sleep in (it was the Queen's birthday after all), we headed off to the beach.  Now, that might sound like a great idea for those of you in the Northern Hemisphere, but June is not summer here, it's winter!  And it was sure feeling winter-like that day.  Brrr...

Don't fret though, there was a pretty good reason to head off to a deserted beach on a cold, wintry day.  Brenna wanted to be baptized, and she wanted to do it in a place that was special to her.  :-)  It was a beautiful sentiment and I love that she put so much thought into this step in her journey.

Heading into the water... 
Thankfully, where we were, the rain had stopped.

It may not look deep, 
but  when the waves came in it was much higher.

She also wanted just a few people there.  To her, it was not about the show or the attention, but about taking a step in her faith journey.  A beautiful, powerful step after the events of the past year plus. 

 A loving hug that adds some warmth.

 Drying feet and bodies.

After some time in the water and a bit of drying off and wrapping up, we headed back up towards the pool area and locked bathrooms to find some sheltered space to get out of wet clothes.  :-)    
 Brenna after the event.
If you look closely, you might see the rainbow that showed up over the water.
It's directly above the silver handrail over the water.

The small group
 a sweet look from a loving brother

 definitely a daddy and daughter moment

a photo op with and added 'get warm' snuggle.

We also enjoyed some lovely visits, cool breezes, and lots of hugs and smiles. (and creative ways of staying warm, but that's a picture for another time)  The girls ran off to play on the sand hills full of laughter and joyAfter, we all gathered back together for some hugs and special words or blessings with Brenna. 

It was beautiful and heartwarming, on a cold, wintry Monday.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

B's New Sport

B's having a go at a new sport.  A sport unknown to the vast majority of Americans, but loved by those in Commonwealth nations...  Netball!

There are seven positions on the court.  Of those seven, B's played four. (I think).  She's learned the game quickly and ROCKS at the defensive positions she's played but prefers the attack positions.  She's not too into shooting...  I think it might have to do with the lack of a backboard and a totally different style to shooting than basketball.

Here are some shots of recent games.  
Getting positions and a pep-talk from the coach.
Each positions has certain parts of the court they're allowed in and restricted from, so they have to wear 'bibs' that identify their position.  B's wearing "WA" here which stands for 'Wing Attack"

Getting a pass, or intercepting one.
The passes are often thrown high.

She's got the ball...
and can only move one foot, the foot she didn't land on
and can't dribble (wrong sport)
and only has three seconds to pass

Looking to pass again...
The girls to the right of the line can't cross it,
so they'll help with a pass if needed, but otherwise just wait.

a different position... Goal Defense
B's the one with the "GD" on her back

a similarity to basketball...
throwing the ball in :-)

Now she's playing "GK" or Goal Keeper
and she's trying to block the shot,
but has to set her feet three feet away before she defends.

There you have it... a brief look at B's newest hobby.  :-)   It's fun to play even if it does take a while to learn the rules.