Friday, July 31, 2009

Camping at the "beach"

The Parker-Pichura clan had originally decided to do a big camping trip in July, but with the arrival of our new nephews happening only a week before the planned trip, we made some changes. David's parents still went camping for 2 weeks, but the rest of the family shortened the time to a day or two...which was still plenty of craziness for all of us I think!! We really enjoy spending time with family, but I will say that 12 people trying to move in and out of one little pop-up camper can be a bit...challenging! We were so glad we were able to spend the day catching up with family, relaxing on the little "beach" at the campsite, playing with our nieces and nephews ..and then being able to drive back home. :) We are so very thankful for the blessing of a family that's close-knit and close-by (half of you anyways).

Samuel is quite the clever guy...he is always finding new uses for things lying around. He was using the hammer to pound sticks into the sand to surround his castle.

Titus "suiting up" for the water.

Kristin and Caleb...Caleb is kind of a clown when it comes to either get a solemn stare or a goofy face.

The "relaxation station"...but they did all get
in the water eventually. :)

Faith enjoying a personal moment with her popsicle...which was melting faster than she could eat it.

Father and son.

Micah and I playing a game of horseshoes...somehow he always manages to beat me. :)

Grace enjoying the water.

The kids really enjoyed playing with Mom in the water.

Kristin had a special birthday this year...the big 3-0 on the 30th!

What a ham! :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A July 4th Departure

We had a dilemma on July 4th...what should we do? We decided to celebrate our nation and see God's creation at the same time by traveling a few hours north, to Mount Baker.
This is one mountain that amazes me, because even though it's a few hours away, we can see it perfectly on a clear day, and it's always covered in snow...even in the heat of summer it's a mountain of white. It was amazing to get up close to it -- we hiked up a neighboring mountain to get an up-close glimpse at Baker's beauty. And yes, July 4th and snow don't usually go together, but up here, it seems the snow never melts! Don't be fooled by the snow was about 80 degrees outside...and yours truly actually got a sunburn in the snow! (Yes, I DID put sunscreen on. Goes to show how much stronger the sun's rays are when you're on the side of a mountain.)
We drove the Mount Baker Highway, which had some amazing views, and then hiked the last few miles of road that were still covered in snow. By the time we were halfway up, I was wishing the snow was gone so we could just drive up...but, it was peaceful without the cars. The way back down was much more exciting...we simply used our backsides as sleds! We got soaked, but it was a fun, fast way down the mountain. :) These mountains are so amazing. We were again awed by the majesty and beauty of God's creation...and quite thankful for such a wonderful country that has preserved this land for us to enjoy. It's such a blessing to have this so close to home..we were back in Seattle in time for the fireworks! :)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Two New Nephews!!

This past Friday, we drove to the airport to meet our new nephews, Samuel and Caleb. David's older sister, Kristin, and her husband Bryan, adopted these two beautiful boys from Ethiopia. It has been a blessing to be able to walk with them through the journey of adoption, and to see their faith in God, who adopts us into His family when we trust in Jesus. We have seen God's faithfulness time and time again throughout this process, and yesterday when we got to meet Samuel and Caleb face to face, it was another sweet evidence of God's grace. Welcome to the family boys!! :)

All the kids at the airport...meeting their new
brothers for the first time!

Everyone packed in!
All of our nieces & big happy Pichura clan!

We stopped by a park for a little playtime and picnic dinner before theys headed back to Yakima.

My co-worker, Bea, and her daughters came along to meet the boys. They are Ethiopian and have become dear friends to all of us. They were able to talk with the boys and explain who everyone was...what a blessing!

They were a little shy... probably because they've got all these crazy people talking jibber-jabber to them! :)

The boys got used to the playground real fast...and it seemed to help them unwind a little.

As you can tell, the other four kids were really excited about their new brothers. Samuel and Caleb were pretty happy too...despite their solemn looks in this picture! I think they were probably tired out!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Time with Family

After my brother's wedding, my Mom and I drove down
to Virginia to visit my Grandma.
My time with her is always special,
as I only get to see her about once a year.

Three generations.

Mr. & Mrs. Kuhn - 7.11.09

A week ago today, my little brother got married! They did a wonderful job planning out their special day, and it was a joy to be able to celebrate with them (unfortunately David couldn't fly out for the wedding). It's still a little hard to believe my baby brother is now a married man, and that together they are Mr. and Mrs. Kuhn! :) It's a joy to see him so happy, and to have a wonderful sister-in-law! Congratulations guys!

The wedding and reception were held at
Lakeside Manor, in New Jersey.

Waiting for the big moment.

The beautiful bride, escorted by her grandmother and mother.

The happy groom.

You may kiss the bride!

Mr. and Mrs. Zachary Kuhn!

The Kuhn Family

My mom, sister, and me.

My sister Lisa, and her boyfriend David.
(yes, 2 gets confusing at times ;)

The reception site - Zach was in charge of a lot of the decorations,
and we were so proud of him. It looked beautiful! Mary did an amazing job as well--planning everything out perfectly!

Dad and me.

Lisa and Zach.

Mom and me.

They had a beautiful cake...

which they managed to make a mess of!
They weren't too messy though; just a little dab on the nose. :)

Dad with his girls.

A couple family tables. We were blessed to have a lot
of family attend the wedding, so it was a great time to catch up!

The centerpieces...aren't the lemons cool?
(just had to show them off since they were Zach's responsibility ;)