Monday, October 31, 2011

Rock Star and a Chicken

I don't think we'll ever come close to topping Troy Polamalu as a Halloween costume - and this year the decision wasn't all daddy's - I had the input of some strong-willed little ones who knew what they wanted!


So we hit the streets with a sassy rock star...


and a comfy warm chicken!


Big sister helped put our wide-eyed chicken at ease...


she was WAY freaked out at first...


But Meron - complete with make-up and everything - helped her sister understand the pure genius of free candy for nothing more than looking cute...


Mebrate caught on quick and was divvying up her stash with her buddy Hayden before long...


This motley crew just keeps on growing from all over the world as they continue to do life together. We love it!


Being cute for candy is exhausting... the ride home proved it...


Heres to another weird American tradition being introduced - dressing up, candy and laughter with friends helped a lot!

Happy Halloween everybody!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Hair We Go...

A while back we had an anonymous commenter let us know what they thought about our skills with our girls' hair. Hey Mr. or Mrs. Anon... if you're still out there - are we doing any better?










For the record - we don't care what those anonymous folks think!

We do what we like...

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Fall Classic

And you thought the Rangers and the Cardinals were the only ones playing late into the fall...


Meron wrapped up her season this morning with a last game in some chilly 45 degree weather. I begged her to walk up to the tee and point to the left field fence before hitting - she wouldn't do it.

I'll keep working on it.


She was pretty pumped about her cool participation trophy.

Meron - mommy and daddy are SO PROUD of you girl. You showed focus, respect, attentiveness, teamwork, the ability to take direction and excitement. And all while having a bunch of fun.

WAY TO GO MERON! (the A's outfit is killing me but I had no say...)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Mebrate See, Mebrate Do


There is no denying the fact that Mebrate LOVES her big sister. If Meron does it - Mebrate is not far behind.

Here's her take on Psalm 139:14 - complete with an adios to the single ladies and everything...

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bye Single Ladies!


Meron dropped her favorite verse on us again tonight. I have searched all over YouVersion and cannot find the version that ends with:

"Bye Single Ladies!
The girls is nuts.

And I love it.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Help!




Not what I wanted to see Google.

Not what I wanted to see...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Oh, Play Me Some Mountain Music...

Last Friday we got up at the butt-crack of dawn like we always do to get ready for work and school. I called all the girls in and lined them up on the bed and said:

"Meron... you're not going to school today. I'm not going to work today. Mommy - you're not going running this weekend. Go pack - cuz we're leaving on a family trip in an hour!"


We have been richly, richly blessed by the friendship we have developed with an incredibly cool family we met through church. Actually - Meron brought us together because these guys served in the children's area at our church as a whole family - and about 2 years ago they started teaching Meron's class.

You've heard us talk about them before on here I am sure. They have poured so much love in to Meron and they have prayed with us to Africa and back for Mebrate and they honestly are just an incredibly cool, inspiring family.

And now - they were offering us a free weekend at their cabin in the mountains. Uhhh... HECK YEAH!!


This was our view around lunch time on Friday...


From the back porch of our mountain home for the next few days!

We spent friday soaking in the views, checking out the GORGEOUS cabin and then we headed in to the downtown area of Blue Ridge. What an awesomely cool town. We cruised up and down checking out some of the fun shops and then headed to Blue Jeans Pizza for a delicious dinner.

When we finally made it back to the cabin the sun was setting and the view was out of this world. We all hopped into the hot tub on the back porch and watched as darkness crept across the mountains. The girls got a little freaked out by the dark so we headed inside and hung out for a while before all crashing early.

The next morning we were up early and heading into town again for the Fall Festival that included a "pet parade" that the girls were excited about. On the way to find a good spot Meron blurted out:

"Hey mommy! Look at that ballerina pig!"
Say what? We spun around and sure enough - right there was a... well... a...


BALLERINA PIG! Meron loved it...


Next came the dogs and everyone (including Mebrate!) loved it.


There were even some Alpacas dressed as the Blues Brothers - it took Laura a minute to get it - she thought they were Amish Llamas.

Awesome.


Meron was quick to jump right up for a photo with Sparky the dog...


Mebrate... uh not so much. Not even a high five. Sorry Sparky. Maybe next year.


After a quick pause for "Breakfast Part II" - a cherry turnover made fresh from a local German bakery (Meron's choice) - we packed up and took the short drive to Burt's Pumpkin Farm!


The girls were loving it...


And we even ran into some friends that we have been meaning to connect with - totally random. Go check out the incredibly cool ministry they run in Uganda called Sixty Feet.


Next it was hayride time...


2 miles through the farm...


with great weather... it was good!


Once we were back the girls decided to each pick out a pumpkin... their respective gourds seemed to fit their personalities too - Meron's was gigantic and Mebrate's was petite.


After Burt's we headed back to town - grabbed a late lunch at a local spot, chased it with some ice cream and headed back to "our new house" (as Meron was calling it).


We decided to hot tub it up again since it was still light out and the girls wouldn't freak out.


I am pretty sure the girls were loving this new experience...


All THREE of them!


After the hot tub it was jammies...


A cozy fire and an introduction to smores...


And then we all huddled up a little later to watch "Tangled." Oh that lump under the pink blanket? That's Mebrate. She was scared of the witch but between you and me - I think a lot of it was an act!

We were all sleeping in the same room and the next morning I watched as Meron woke up and pulled the curtains back and stared out the window at this:


She paused for a long while there and then turned around. She saw me looking at her and said:
"Daddy! Those mountains are so beautiful!"
I loved it... I see so much of God in nature - it's one of the main ways He speaks to me - and I just loved her seeing the beauty in the mountains like I do...

This was our last morning here and we were determined to make the most of it. We ate some quick breakfast and headed outside for a hike...


To the girls - it was a TREASURE HIKE... we armed them both with "treasure bags" and sent them off to find treasures...


like colorful leaves...


and itty bitty pine-cones!


They were loving every minute of it and they did not want this day to end. At all. I don't think any of us did.


Eventually - it was time to head back to the cabin and pack it in for the ride back home...


We did our final walk through the gorgeous cabin. Spent one last long extended minute on the back porch soaking in the incredible views. And then all piled in to the Xterra and headed down this road...


Our friends had this awesome pillow on their couch that just made us laugh out loud.

Michael, Mary Beth, Sean and Michael - thank you guys SOO MUCH! You really gave us a true blessing and treat. And ya know what - we love you guys even without the cabin!

Monday, October 24, 2011

I Love My Family...


I freaking love my family. I mean... a lot.

Does that make me sappy? Wimpy? Soft? Nah... it just makes me in love with my family.

These girls have taught me so much about love, trust, faith... and God.

I am stupid blessed.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Kick-Butt Weekend!


These girls had a fantabulous weekend...


Lots of fun, firsts and family time.


It was just what we needed.

Details to come... after some sleep!