Sunday, November 30, 2008

'Tis the Season!



Boyce Thompson Arboretum

Happy Anniversary to US!

Yesterday Micah and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary. We left Eli in good hands with his Nana & Papa while we enjoyed an evening out together. We have been trying to cut back on our spending when we can, with now saving pretty much all extra funds for the adoption, so we were grateful to have a giftcard to the Outback Steakhouse that covered our entire yummy dinner! We then headed to the Phoenician to enjoy the beautiful Phoenix sunset and an ice cream dessert. We had an odd experience at the Phoenician where we somehow managed to park in a garage for service vehicles (or something), and then ended up taking a service elevator to a guest room floor... where we made our way outside at the end of the hall, only to find ourselves on a grassy lawn surrounded by BUNNIES! I'm not kidding there were rabbits everywhere - it was very strange and I told Micah I felt like I was in some kind of weird dream. Luckily, we hopped back in the car and found the correct parking garage to get to where we wanted to go :)

Micah and I have had a wonderful six years together, and have grown so much in that time both as individuals and as a couple. We look forward to the milestones that will occur in the upcoming year as we both turn 30 (wow!) and if all goes well in our adoption process (fingers crossed!) we will welcome our 2nd child into our family. Cheers to a bright and blessed future, full of many adventures we have yet to share in.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Retreat

I have had many experiences attending church retreats throughout my life. I can remember being a young kid and attending Campus Crusade retreats with college students from NAU and ASU during the time period that my parents were on staff with Crusade. I remember being a child and teenager attending "family camp" with Desert View Baptist Church where my dad was the pastor for a number of years. I remember in college attending many amazing fall and spring retreats with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, the life-changing organization I became involved with during my freshman year at NAU. And bringing us to the present...

I have thoroughly enjoyed attending the annual Women's Retreat with my church (LifePoint) for the past few years, this one being no exception. This was the first year that we were able to hold our retreat over a full weekend (when you begin with a small church plant, it's usually essential that retreats end on Saturday so everybody is back to serve in church on Sunday!). Our church has grown large enough now, that the women are able to venture away from Friday-Sunday for some good times of building deeper friendships with one another, relaxing, and seeking God.

This year, we went to a beautiful retreat center in Prescott (Chapel Rock) and enjoyed the crisp cool weather, and the smell of the pines. The theme of our retreat was "Seasons," and we learned about the different "life seasons" that we all experience and how God works in us and through us during those seasons. I was the worship leader for the weekend, and of course... I woke up Saturday morning with laryngitis! I had been battling a cold, and I guess it got the best of me. Thankfully, laryngitis doesn't affect one's ability to play the keyboard, and thanks to some wonderful ladies who stepped up to the challenge of leading the singing portion, we had amazing times of worship. It was a great reminder for me that even during times that I think I'm in control, I'm not. And when I think the success of something depends on my ability to do something well, God reminds me that "his power is made perfect in my weakness." For those who know me well, you also know I'm a pretty independent person, so it was a great way for the Lord to 'force' me to rely on other people and be reminded that he has placed us in community and relationships with one another for a reason - we're supposed to lean on each other.

I didn't take to many pictures during the weekend, but here is one shot of Nicole and I sitting in the "Rock Chapel." I was so grateful that Nicole, my friend from work, could join me on this retreat! :) We had a great time, and we were both fighting illness so our room was like a pharmacy the entire weekend. It was well worth it though!

A New Library!

Hooray! The new Queen Creek library is finally open!! For those of you in the area, if you haven't gone yet you have to go, it's beautiful!



Monday, November 10, 2008

Family Photo Shoot

Last weekend we had a photo shoot my side of the family - something that hasn't happened in quite a awhile to say the least. Here are a few samples...
The Whole Gang

The Siblings

Eli and his handsome new haircut

The Hutchison Family :)