Sunday, September 28, 2008

Farewell Malaika

Tonight my sister and I made the hard discusion to put down our family dog, Malaika. She was about 15 years old and had many health problems. Lately she was having a lot of respiratory issues and my little sister, Lauren had a very rough night with her Saturday night. She continued to have increased effort to breathe and poor oxygenation and we we decided that is was not right to let her suffer anymore. There were about five other families saying goodbye to their pets at the local vet's office. It was so sad. I left wondering how anyone could ever work there then realized that's what people always said about my job. Malaika was a great dog and Lauren loved her like her own child. The house already has a strange silence. I feel like I have already said goodbye to too many pets this week.


Last spring Eric and I scheduled vacation never knowing just how much we would need it. This weekend we headed to Phoenix for four days. We were invited to come to the Marriott's Canyon Villas to spend a few days and hear a timeshare presentation. This is our third time hearing one of these presentations so we aren't really susceptible to buying a timeshare (not that we are opposed). Last April, we figured that we would just go and have a cheap vacation. We had no idea, after packing up our entire lives, how much we would need the break and how perfectly God would have orchestrated the timing. Here are a few pics from our very restful vacation.

Eric enjoying the scenic five hour drive featuring dirt and cacti.

Audrey also enjoying the drive.

We enjoyed the "Lizard Lagoon" kids pool.

Audrey decided she wanted to wear her sunglasses like Mommy and Daddy,
so cool.

Chasing bunnies with her bunny.

The foliage.

Although all we did was drive, eat, sleep, swim, swim, sleep, eat and drive- we had a great time. And most of all felt really relaxed.

Moving Day

Last Monday we moved out of the Farm. We had a physically and emotionally exhausting day. Here are some pictures of the process.

Packing all our favorite things!

Relaxing the night before in camping chairs in our couch-less living room.

Lidia beating our rugs with a stick like the good Romanian woman that she is.

"Sharps container" boxes everywhere- thanks City of Hope for an endless supply of boxes.

Audrey inspecting the empty truck.

We have so much stuff!

Moving is a lot of work! We thought we would be more relieved when the truck was packed, but we are just now beginning to feel relaxed. I was so wired that I did not even sleep the night after the big day and I've been fighting a cold ever since. Eric and I agree that we don't think we have ever been this exhausted and we're thinking that this journey might only be beginning.

One thing I won't miss...

a DIRTY child.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Goodbye to Peyton

One of my saddest goodbyes was to Peyton, my first and maybe only cat. We found Peyton as a kitten out by our gate when someone threw her over the fence. We did not have the heart to leave her out in the cold. She loved to lay on my belly when I was pregnant, feeling Audrey through the vibrations of the amniotic fluid when she purred. After Audrey was born, Peyton was very jealous. She would wait to make an appearance and seek cuddling after Audrey went to bed. Peyton occupied all of Audrey's spaces- crib, stroller, highchair seat, etc and although Audrey has always been fascinated with her and chased her around the house (she calls her Petoom) Peyton didn't return the love and Audrey got swiped at a dozen or so times. In light of the move, we found a new loving home for Peyton. It is sad, but a good decision for the family. We will miss our beautiful black cat.

A common sight at our front door

Sorry I stole your tail


My favorite apple pictures of the season... as you can see I am going to miss the farm.


Figs were my summer love. I ate dozens, Audrey did too. I made fig preserves and jam, and fig bars. I never really appreciated fresh figs before. The more commonly seen form of figs is sadly Fig Newtons and most figs found in the grocery store are already dried, both highlighting the seediness which does nothing to promote the delightfully refreshing fruit. Speaking to seed (they are not processed by the body which I discovered and rediscovered far too many times in Audrey's poop). Sorry, back to figs- the tree itself is by far the fastest leafing tree I have ever seen. If I was living at the farm another year, I would do a better job photo-documenting it as the leaves grew in to the spring; I could see the difference on my daily walks around the farm. My love for figs felt justified seeing that it is such a biblical fruit.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Family Photos

One of our friends and Eric's co-worker Katie Tuttle offered to take some final pictures of us on the farm.

Going Away Party!

Here are some pictures of our Going Away Party on September 14th. Thanks to all our friends who were able to make it to send us off.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Doggy Bowl

Audrey learning how to drink properly.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Sorry for the delay!

We've been busy...isn't that what everyone says when they haven't posted in a while! Actually, the reason we haven't posted for a while is that we have been focused on a major life change. If you are hearing this for the first time...sorry we weren't able to tell you in person. We are moving to Maryland! It is something we have been thinking about for a long time and we feel like God has asked us to step out in faith. Now let me qualify that statement by saying that we aren't "blaming" our move on God. I hate it when people do that. Like..."God told me to break up with you"...eww. No, we are pursuing something that we have been thinking about for quite some time, and believe that God has been opening doors since we started moving in this direction. I won't go into all the reasons why we are moving (although both Ashley and I would love to talk about it with you personally) but amidst the stress and chaos, we are excited.

Anyway, a lot of things are changing in our lives (duh) but one of the biggest is the fact that we are not able to take our cat Peyton. We have had Peyton since January 2007 when someone threw her over the fence here at the farm. She couldn't have been more than 6 weeks old and it was freezing outside we are adopted her. She had been a wonderful farm cat roaming the farm by day and cuddling with us at night. Hear it coming?

Peyton needs a new home and we want her to go to someone who is going to love her. She is a beautiful black cat (we've included some pictures) who has lived as an indoor/outdoor cat here at the farm. She's fixed and had her shots and probably the greatest thing about her is that she doesn't really meow when she wants food or to go outside. She's really sweet and loves to cuddle (on her own terms...she is a cat) but basically takes care of herself.

So that's the pitch. Are you interested in providing a new home for Peyton?