MeganWhen Allan has a business trip, we try to call everyday. Sometimes we can talk a few times during the day.  With him in China this time, talking is a little trickier.

According to the kids, Allan is in the future, since he is thirteen hours ahead of us.  When we get up in the morning, he is exhausted and ready to crawl into bed.  Jet lag is not fun! By the time he comes home next week, he will have to readjust to “normal” time.

I am very thankful for Skype!  Allan calls us over the computer as often as he can. We can see each other and talk. Our conversations are short, but Allan does not seem as far away this way.

Megan is struggling with missing her Daddy.  She woke up last night calling for him.  After snuggling and reminding her that Daddy loves her very much and will call soon, she fell back to sleep.  I am so glad that she has a way to talk to him everyday.

Talking to Allan
Talking to Allan

The only negative is that she seems to think if she gets the headphones on Daddy will be on the computer, ready to talk to her.  I find her by the computer with the headphones a few times everyday.  Just waiting….



Hands on Education

Fun breakfast
Fun breakfast

When Allan has business trips, we do school a little differently. This morning, I treated the kids out to breakfast and then we went to look for some materials we needed for an art project we want to do. After roaming the library looking for books on China and good read out louds, we headed home. Mark worked on the leaves while Adrian sat in the swing drawing tigers. The girls played outside and then worked on some of their art work.

Then this evening, we enjoyed having our friend Miss Jili over. Miss Jili is from China and an intern where Allan works. She said she would teach us how to use chopsticks and teach us some recipes from home. It was a fun evening!

Jili taught us how to make eggs and tomatoes–which is similar to something that I make for breakfast–asparagus with chili peppers and garlic, and spicy chicken called Kong Poa. Everyone enjoyed the meal and ate a lot, even using chopsticks! Adrian asked how do they drink in China and Jili said, “with chopsticks”. Adrian just had to try it. After dinner the girls showed Miss Jili how to make beaded bobby pins. Adrian fixed us apple slices for dessert while Mark made us tea and we talked some more.

We enjoyed ourselves so much, that everyone stayed up very late! I hope that we have the chance to get together with Miss Jili again after Allan gets home so he can share with her some of his trip.

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Almost Perfect

RainbowIt has been fun watching the weather.  It poured most of the day and the wind has been very strong. A few strong storms have passed by, but none have hit us.

When it cleared up for a few minutes, we headed outside to play and Audrey discovered a rainbow. We enjoyed taking pictures of it before it started to rain again and we headed back inside.

We have been extremely lazy today. The kids and I have enjoyed hanging around, doing nothing of importance since returning from church and visiting my mom as a birthday surprise.

Even with the crazy weather, it was almost a perfect Sunday. If Allan could have enjoyed relaxing with us today, instead of heading to China for a business trip, it would have been a perfect day.

Allan left for Shanghai, China very early this morning.  I am not exactly sure what he is doing, other than it has something to do with wire harnesses. Please pray for his safety while he is gone. I asked him to write updates as a “guest writer” on the blog, so hopefully he will have time to post a little.Clouds


Ashley Drake Inn

AD houseWhile Andrea had her soccer tournament, we needed a place to stay.  Most of the team stayed at a hotel about a half hour away from the soccer fields. We were hoping for something closer and MUCH quieter.

Allan did some research and discovered a bed and breakfast about 20 minutes down the road from Andrea’s tournament. The Ashley Drake Inn is near downtown Franklin which we had time to explore a little.

Kim and Craig Smith and their two children run the inn. It was fun being able to talk to Kim and learn more about their beautiful house. She even offered a few suggestions on day trips for future stays.

BreakfastMark eats a lot, but he was not able to finish half of his breakfast the first day!  The food was very good, but was served in large portions. Everyone requested smaller amounts the following morning.

Megan’s favorite room was her bedroom.  She insisted that her personal bedroom was special because it had a toilet, tub and sink in it.  If anyone mentioned it was a huge bathroom, she fussed and said, “No! It’s my bedroom!”

If you are ever driving through central Indiana, and need a place to stay, look up the Ashley Drake Inn.  Be sure to say hi from us if you do stay over!

Click on a picture to see a slide show!

Exciting Weekend

This weekend, Andrea had a soccer tournament. She played hard all weekend and her team came in second! The games were very close and exciting to watch.

After two games on Saturday, the girls started Sunday’s game knowing if they lost, they were finished with the tournament. The home team was playing on their own field and Andrea’s coach cautioned them that they were playing a tough team “who knew every bump and blade of grass in the field”!

The game started out with each team trying hard but no points being made.  Then, just before half time, Laureen kicked the ball to Andrea, who made her very first goal! As parents yelled and screamed, one of the mothers told me that the goalie had not let any balls get through the whole tournament!

Both teams struggled and played hard the entire game.  The game ended with a score of 1-0!  It was neat watching the girls come up to Andrea after the game and congratulate her on her great goal. Listening to Andrea talking about the game, she mentioned she made a point, but focused on how hard her team played and that they won.  That was the winning point for me!

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Mark and MeganLast night was cold! Andrea and Allan shivered through soccer practice while the first snow of the season fell. It did not last long, but Andrea remarked it was fun practicing in it.

While they were at soccer, the rest of us were home enjoying the beautiful fall colors. We roamed the woods and then headed inside for hot chocolate.

Because we all love candles, we decided to experiment with candle pictures. Mark watched Megan Audrey candlesquirm and wiggle and blow out the candles and offered to snuggle with her so she would sit still.  I think the two of them is my favorite of all the pictures.

I plan to try again soon, we will have many dark winter nights to play with ideas!