Stroll Down Memory Lane

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Its been anything but boring…..life with this man.

C thought of something incredibly romantic on our first anniversary that has been a favorite tradition of mine every year since….. ¬†Every wedding anniversary, he buys a silver charm to commemorate the past year of our marriage and celebrate a significant moment, event or often…..a baby ūüôā ¬†Someday, my kids¬†will fight over who inherits¬†this bracelet. ¬†I love the story it tells.

Collage

2001 – 2002

Married on the beach on Saint Simons Island…God’s presence and glory showered down through a thunderstorm! ¬†Honeymooned in Key West. ¬†Settled in an apartment in Columbia SC. ¬†Got pregnant. ¬†Surprise of a lifetime – its TWINS. ¬†Threw up every day for nearly 9 months. ¬†Helped with a church plant and hosted a small group. ¬†Moved again into a second home. ¬†Gave birth to¬†Tristan & Abi. ¬†Our family grew from 2 to 4.

2002 – 2003

Began preparations to move overseas.  Packed up all our earthly possessions.  Spent the twins 1st birthday in London en-route to Ukraine.  Tristan broke out with chicken-pox on the trip.  Landed in Kiev and moved into a temporary apartment.  Discovered we were pregnant 2 weeks later.  Miscarried at 15 weeks.  Processed loss and grief alone in a foreign place.  C began traveling.  Found a permanent apartment and moved a 4th time in 2 years.  Potty trained the twins (why this seemed like a good idea at 18 months is beyond me!)

2003 – 2004

Katherine, my sister moved to Ukraine to be with us – a Godsend to help with twins so we could study language. ¬†We visit Sharm El Sheik Egypt. ¬†We began volunteering at an orphanage. ¬†C spending 30-50% of the time on the road. ¬†We spend Christmas in London and get to see C’s parents and my mom. ¬†We bring back a souvenir from England……due in 9 months.

2004 – 2005

Our sweet Britain is born in a hospital in Ukraine. ¬†My mother comes to meet her grand-girl. ¬†Our language skills improve….my attitude to the Ukrainian cold does not! ¬†We go back to the States for a short visit and to get some intensive counseling. ¬†Strain of living overseas has taken a toll…and….Im pregnant again. ¬† Twins are enrolled in¬†Russian pre-school for a short time. ¬† My daddy comes to visit. ¬†The Orange Revolution is taking place all around us.

2005 – 2006

We welcome Isabelle after a very scary delivery and almost losing her to placental abruption. ¬†My mother and 2 sisters come to visit. ¬†We develop close ties with our team members, our landlords, our language tutor and the orphans we are working with. ¬† We discover an international church that fosters friendships with other ex-pats. ¬†We begin hosting a small group and find “family” away from home.

2006 – 2007

A fun family¬†vacation to Marbella Spain. ¬†Once again, we bring back a souvenir – two pink lines on a¬†stick. ¬†We are asked to come on as directors of the orphanage/ministry to street kids we’ve been working with. ¬†A busy year as we take on directorship as well as buy, remodel and move into an apartment. ¬†Fifth move – first home we’ve owned.

2007-2008

We return to the US for Thanksgiving and Christmas to celebrate the holidays with family. ¬†Baby Evie born. ¬†We now have 5 kids 5 years old and under! ¬†Life changes forever with the diagnosis of Evie’s heart defect. ¬†The year we will forever look back on as¬†full of miracles! ¬†¬†Many tears. ¬†Many prayers. ¬†So much love and heartache. ¬†The blog is born. ¬†C returns to Ukraine while we are still in the hospital to ties up loose ends and move our family back to the States permanently. ¬† Charleston becomes dear to us! ¬†We settle into a quiet house on a lake in Prosperity SC. ¬†Tristan falls in love with country living. ¬†C and I leave our kids for the first time and go Jamaica for our friends wedding. ¬†I begin doula certification.

2008 – 2009

A bit of a blur. ¬†So¬†many hospitalizations, sleep studies, inpatient and outpatient procedures. ¬†100+ blood draws. ¬†Little by little, we see Evie begin to gain strength. ¬†That summer,¬†we’re invited to go work on C’s uncles ranch in Montana for the summer….we consider staying forever!

2009 – 2010

C buys me a “real” camera. ¬†My passion for photography and writing take off. ¬†A fun year of experimentation. ¬†I launch¬†three¬†businesses as a spin off to the blog….photography, modeling and boutique marketing. ¬†We¬†also begin homeschooling the kids. ¬†Fatigue sets in – surprise!! ¬†Another pregnancy!!

2010 – 2011

Seeing Andrea Bocelli in concert together makes for our best Valentines day ever!¬† Lots of “high risk” monitoring of pregnancy due to a heart condition they have detected in me. ¬† Gigi makes her entrance at a wee 6 lbs. 3 weeks early. ¬†Heathy! ¬†Such a redeeming experience to get to do a baby again….differently this time! ¬†C works remodeling our fixer-upper-house. ¬†Work/minsitry¬†takes him to Cuba, China and India.

2011 – 2012

Winds of change are blowing again.  Highlight of the year was returning to Key West ALONE together for a long weekend.  A fun excursion before we launch overseas again.  C and I make a scouting trip to Bangkok and secure an apartment then return home and start uprooting.

2012 – 2013

Family trip to NYC for embassy meeting and visas. ¬†We pack a pod, withdrawal from school, and move to the other side of the world. ¬†Another season of adjustment. ¬†We begin homeschooling, then enroll the kids in school when I get sick….a surprise pregnancy is short lived – we have another baby in heaven. ¬†¬†Proximity to India allows C to travel frequently and extensively to coach the Indian team. ¬†We are blessed to have many, many, many, friends and family visit us in Thailand. ¬†We get to play with wild monkeys. ¬†I travel back to the US for my sisters wedding. ¬† ¬†Life Group becomes a wonderful source of community and friendship for us in this new place.

2013 – 2014

Doula and photography opportunities growing. ¬†Ministry flourishing in India. ¬†Family beach trip with C’s parents to Phuket. ¬† ¬†My parents come spend Christmas holiday with us. ¬†Surprise visit from¬†Faith and Maggie – some of our dearest friends. Melina too….friends even dearer so far from home! ¬†We experience the Bangkok “Shut Down” and survive a Coup D’etat.

 

DSC_3214

Life has been anything but boring! ¬†Its¬†cliche to say “Id do it all over again” because honestly, I wouldn’t choose to go back. ¬†There were some really hard seasons¬†and truly, it just. keeps. getting. better!!! ¬†But…….there is NO ONE I would rather have done it with¬†and I love looking forward to more adventure and¬†growing old with this man. ¬†Happy 13th Anniversary love!

 

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.