Friday, May 29, 2009

A Memorable Memorial Day Weekend

We had FUN with the Stickler's over the long Memorial Day weekend! We piled into our minivan and drove down to Dothan and stayed with them in their home on Friday night. Then, the next day, we headed down to their family lake house in Florida! We met up with another family, and we all had a good, fulfilling weekend together...SIX kiddos and SIX adults! I was overwhelmed the first day, but I eventually came around, praise the Lord! :)

Mostly, I've posted pictures to tell of our time together...

Saturday morning, we were OFF to Silver Lake! We followed Justin's cool truck to the lake in this nasty weather, which was pretty much what we dealt with all weekend. Rain, rain, go away!!We arrived at their lake house within about an hour!!
Justin, Darby, Morgan, Paige and John Martin piled out of the BIG TRUCK! :)
Wouldn't you love to have a lakehouse with this view!?!? The water is turquoise and SO clean because it's a spring fed lake. NO gas motors allowed! Nice.A few of us braved sitting down at the pier, 'riding out' this thunder storm. It was fascinating to watch something so serene, yet powerful. God's presence is so real and so evident when we make the effort to get away from the everyday busyness of life and intentionally seclude ourselves into His nature!Justin, sportin' his "straw man" hat, holding the hornet. :)Justin is the epitomy of PATIENCE!! I've believed this since I met him back in December. I mean this as a compliment, for sure! "Please take it that way, Justin!!" :) He's SO good with Darby, with each of their beautiful children {for being a guy, he's amazing with the girls! SO into their little worlds!!}, with their home...He enjoys working with his hands and doesn't mind getting dirty! In fact, I think he likes to get dirty! :)
Rhys did GREAT!!!! He slept well at night (good, long hours), napped well during the days, played well {or let all the other kiddos play well with him because they're all older}, and he enjoyed the new float that Daddy and I just bought him!John Martin & Rhys kept each other company, but I think they'll be much more interactive the older they get!! {I hope!}I was intrigued by everyone's unique qualities and preferences throughout the weekend. Going back through our pictures, I noticed that we captured everyone in their 'true form.' Here, Justin displays his laid back, relaxed demeanor. He'd just pick up his guitar and start strummin' and singin'. I appreciate that. He even does this at home, whether anyone's around to listen or not! He was singing worship music on Sunday morning, which reminded me that it was Sunday!Darby's 'true form'...very casual and laid back! She was quick to escape to a good book, something I'd imagine she doesn't have much opportunity to do during her busy days of 'real life.' Morgan, in her 'true form'! Brave, courageous and spunky, walking down the narrow, spiral staircase...all alone!! Her parents know what I mean by those descriptive adjectives, especially in the context of this staircase! Darby's heart races when the kids get close to those windy stairs {and rightly so, sister! ;)}.And the Raiger, what a cutie ALL that she does!!! I could just kiss on her all day long! She's doing something here that we all did very well during our weekend together...EAT! :) She's sportin' a yummy powdered donut here. Oh, look at those sweet and beautiful brown eyes {just like her Mama's if you ask me!! ;)}!
All the kiddos, plus Judson, the other couple's son, piled high on Darby, here. :) She's an AMAZING mom! I aspire to be more like Darby, as a woman, a wife and a mommy! She is so selfless, and I love how she and Justin see their children as true individuals, not just as "kids." They treat their children with respect and give them choices so that they're learning to be well-rounded. I appreciate their model as parents, and I absolutely see God's purpose in our getting to know them and learn through and with them. I am thankful.
Well, Darby did a great summary of our weekend together here, and we have so many more pics here, but I could only post so many on this post. Please go see the rest of our weekend!!
Thank you, friends, for letting us bunk with you guys through the long weekend, and, Darby, once you get that RV, y'all are welcome to land in our driveway ANYtime!! ;) I hope to get to see yall again very soon!


erika said...

SOOO FUN!!!! So glad you had a great time!!!

Darby said...

I couldn't have said it better myself... and you're right... not a lot of reading time around here. I only had a couple pages left in my book and I'm still trying to finish! Thanks for all your kind words... you are so very GRACIOUS. You are a true servant of the Lord, my friend!!

Kathy said...

Looks like you guys have been VERY busy since I saw you. Looks like much fun! Can you tell me the name of that game you and Russell showed me on our visit. See, I knew that I would forget. Hello to Russell and hugs to Rhys. Love Mama Kat