Hello all my dear friends in bloggy land. I'm sorry I've been away for so long. I meant to post at least once a month this summer, but life just seemed to go a bit crazy. Thank you so much for the prayers for my cousin Hugh and his wife Michelle.
Hugh is doing amazingly well. It has been such an unbelievable journey, and this accident has changed the life he and Michelle thought they were going to have, but they have been strong holding each other together, and have a simply wonderful group of people surrounding them with love. Sadly my cousin along with many other broken bones, lost his leg from the knee down, but has so much determined it makes the doctors amazed. Please continue to pray for him and his wife. They still have a long road of physical therapy, and learning to live this new life. This is the website of his story and the journal of his recovery if you would like to here more about his story. http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/hughster This is Brinn with her cousin Hugh. There have a special bond they share the same birthday. This was taken at a BBQ that Hugh and Michelle through for Hugh's village on October 18th. That was a group of friends and family that brought meals, and did many other things so that Michelle could concentrate on Hugh and his care.
Hugh told Brinn yesterday that they needed to have a big birthday bash next year, since he didn't get to celebrate his this year. She's also excited because Hugh said he'd teach her to fish. I'm not sure if she realizes that includes live bait or not. This next photo is my cousin Deanna, another amazing story, and one of my inspirations. She's Hugh's sister, and then me on the other side. Deanna is a couple months younger than me, and we are 3 of 4 younger set of cousins in my family. Sadly Darcy lives in Florida, so we don't have her in this shot. But she promised on Facebook next summer to come visit.
So after Brinn's birthday which was the last entry, Brinn went off to camp for a week. It was her first ever stay overnight camp. It's called Camp Hammer, she had fun and still talks about it. the jury is still out on if she wants to do it again. It's a Christian Camp up in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and she did great. She went there without knowing a sole, and ended with some fun memories and friends.This is Brinn with the Pastor from Camp first thing she told us was how awesome he was. "Daddy you'd like him he's as good as Dr. McArthur" She told us all about the story of Joseph the subject he taught on through the whole week, was Faith. Brinn's favorite activity was the night games. She loved them.
It was also the first time ever for Brett and I to have a week completely by ourselves. Being a premade family, you forget that not everyone starts out with a child. So what did we do. Well Brett got this done. It's his one and only tattoo, but he'd been wanting one for a long time. I designed it. It's been interesting to see the reactions. Leo the tattoo artist pumped it up from my drawing, he made the cross all rugged. Some people just stare at it, some people just have to ask what is that word. "Tetelestai" John 19:30. Brett loves when people ask. He tells them it's what Jesus cried out on the cross before He gave up His Spirit, it means "It Is Finished". Jesus took on all sin of the world and finished Satan's hold on us, when He gave His life on the cross for you and me. It's very interesting to see peoples reaction to Brett's boldness. He's already thinking about the next one for the other arm. In answer to the next question No, I didn't get one. At least not yet *wink*. The rest of the time we went to dinner, went for a bike ride, took the dog for walks, and watched movies.
July was filled with various activities of day camps, one in which our church put on besides VBS, which was amazing in itself. This Adventure Camp, Brinn was a secret agent the first day, a painter the second, a scientist the third, a photo journalist the fourth, and on the fifth day she was a rock star. Her and her friends were able to record a song at our churches recording studio, and all the kids got a copy of the CD made. Pretty cool. I also took Brinn and her very special buddy Olivia for an overnight to the Embassy Suites, we celebrated Brinn's 10th birthday. They loved running around the hotel, swimming in the indoor pool, jumping on the beds, and the indoor gardens. Getting stuffies didn't hurt either.
Brinn took a big step out of her comfort zone this year. She's always gone to the same Summer Program at the school she goes to every year, this year we wanted her to try new and different things. So besides the big jump to Camp Hammer, she also broke through her stage fright. She went to a 3 week drama camp. Our families pastor wife Michelle, has an amazing gift in this and directs children's musicals for one of the school districts here. With her help we convinced Brinn to try the drama camp, and be in the Jungle Book Kids, Musical. Well not only did she perform in the background jungle animals, but she got the part of Shanti, the girl that takes Mowgli into the man village. She surprised us by her performance along with all the friends and family who came. She had a great time, and they worked really hard. It was very impressive, that the show these kids put on was put together in 3 weeks. They practiced 6 hours a day 5 days a week for 3 weeks. Here are a couple pics of her with us and her friend, and one with her director Michelle McCormick.
The next morning we left for our big event of the summer a family vacation. A real vacation, a go away and stay in a hotel vacation. The key thing was, we didn't tell Brinn our destination, all she new is we were going down to Southern California. The only thing we did tell her was we were going to go listen to Dr. John McArthur at Grace Community Church, her response was "That'll be interesting, are we going to do anything fun?" We told her their was an amusement park we may go to, and then we'd just see how the rest would go.
So here she is on our road trip down to So. Cal. She had no clue that our real destination was Disneyland. We drove right past it she was so wrapped up in what she was watching she didn't even see it, and when we got into the hotel lobby (and it was an extremely inexpensive hotel) she was very disappointed in the hotel. Then she was even more disappointed by the room, which I have to agree smelled funny. So we unloaded the car packed our backpacks, and headed to dinner. She saw all the banners celebrating Disneyland's 50th birthday, and as we walked right past Disneyland and the entrance, her mood went from a bit disappointed to bummed out. At that point we thought she'd figure it out, but she'd asked before school got out if we could go to Disneyland and we told her we couldn't afford it. So in her mind there was probably no way that we could go.
Then I told her she could pick anywhere she wanted to go and eat for dinner. Turning her toward Disneyland and said anywhere (except McDonald's) so guess where she picked. If you said Disneyland you were wrong. Captain Kid's Buffet, yep standing across from Disneyland she picks possibly the worst restaurant we've ever eaten at (should have let her pick McDonald's). Brett and I just looked at each other shrugged our shoulders and in we went. So finally after sitting down and eating, we decided to let her in on the plan. This is how the conversation went.
Me: Boo, Dad called ahead, and it turns out Dr. John McArthur is not in town this week, so we can't go see him speak. (we really were going to go on the Sunday if he was there)
Brinn: Oh, that's sad, I was kinda looking forward to actually seeing him instead of just listening to him on the computer.
Me: Really, your disappointed.
Brinn: Uh huh I like him. Mom this food is gross.
Me: Yeah, don't eat it if you don't like it. So anyway we came up with a back up plan. Dad and I got tickets to spend 5 Days in Disneyland instead. I hope that's okay.
Brinn: (Eyes really big) Serious, Oh my gosh you are the greatest parents ever.
Me: You didn't really think we'd take you stay in a grubby little hotel right across from Disneyland, and not take you did you.
Dad: Yeah, what kinda parent would do that.
Brinn: Well I thought we couldn't afford to go. So when are we going? Are we going in the morning?
Me: Nope, we are going right now, as soon as your done with dinner.
Brinn: Yes! you guys are the best, I'm done let's go!
Dad: (singing) We're going to Disneyland.
Brinn: Daaaad, someone might hear you.
Somethings don't change.
So here are some highlights.
Now there is a story behind the Star Wars pics. Brett is a huge Star Wars fan, everyone who knows us knows this. I was too, it just didn't carry quite so heavily into adult hood for me. We even played the theme music from the Throne room scene at the end of the original movie at our wedding as we walked back down the aisle together. Anyway Brinn has grown up with Star Wars everywhere in our house. She loves it, along with a few of her friends. So the first ride we went on was Star Tours (which is a Star Wars ride) Brinn's favorite part of the park is Tomorrow Land. She wanted nothing to do with the princesses, or being in Fantasy Land with all the classic Disney stuff. It was Star Tours, and Space Mountain every day. The back pack is her favorite souvenir. Yes it's R2D2, let me tell you she wore that thing everyday, and everyone commented on it. She only wanted a mickey mouse shirt with him as a Jedi and we all three had to get mini light sabers. Mine's purple. The pictures with Darth Vader, and the Storm Trooper were the only two characters she was interested in standing and waiting for. The others well "mom the lines are two long."
So there you have it how I spent my summer. It was busy, and vacation was a blast. On a last note I did end up in the ER twice after we got home from Disneyland. My liver disease developed two more complications, and it was a rough go around for us, but God as always speaks through the good and the difficult. I'll save that for another post. So I hope to get back to blogging more regularly now, you can keep up with me to on Facebook.
Blessings to you all. Talk to you soon. I'll be around to check up on your blogs soon.