Sunday, December 25, 2011

A few pre-Christmas photos

Below are a few sweet photos of my girls before Christmas.  I have several videos to upload too, but have run into some speed bumps.  My amazing IT guy (also an amazing husband) is going to try to help me with those issues soon.  For now, these photos will have to suffice.  In addition, we had a wonderful Christmas here at the Harbor and I will load those photos within the next couple days.

In these photos, the girls are wearing Christmas dresses from Grammie (Mark's mom).  She has given them beautiful dresses every year since Zoe was born!  I really like the bright colors this year.  We took these photos on our way out to a formal mother-daughter tea.

I love Abby Graces's cute, toothless smile. 

Rebekah looks stunning in black. 

Hannah has a hard time posing, but is so adorable that she's edible. 

Zoe looks very pretty in purple. 

I'm a blessed momma! 

Fancy tea time!

Rebekah and her closest girlfriends in Okinawa. 

This last photo was taken after their piano recital.  All four girls played beautifully!  I can't wait to share the videos ASAP. 

More soon! 

Friday, August 5, 2011

Typhoon Muifa is on its way out

We're still being dumped on by Typhoon Muifa (now a Super typhoon), but the worst winds are over.  The Harbor has taken in quite a bit of water, so I am going to make this post brief and get back to the business of drying out.  Here's a great pic of the typhoon.  We're thanking God that we are all fine and praying for our neighbors in China.  In China they have much less sophisticated drainage and architecture, so there will undoubtedly be countless deaths there today.  Pray for China. 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Typhoon Muifa and Friends

Typhoon Muifa is here, and so is a storm of friends!  During the storm, the Harbor is home to: 

4 moms
1 dad
1 single gal
4 dogs
10 kids

Here's the first storm (we're the long, slim island on the left side): 

And here's the second storm: 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Gross stuff everyday

Day one of Mark's mission trip: dealt with a dead rat

Day two: killed three flying cockroaches, which were flying around my kitchen and dining room late at night, and were honestly the size of hummingbirds

Day three: discovered a huge, brown, hairy (huntsman?) spider running on the wall above my girls' bunk bed--this sucker was at least the size of my palm; tried to kill him and chase him around without cussing and also alarming the children; finally got him with Raid

Day four: not sure what will happen tomorrow, but I sure hope this typhoon arrives already--we've been waiting all week for it and I'm getting tired of worrying about it!

Typhoon Muifa continues to gain strength and we're supposed to experience sustained winds over 120mph on Friday with gusts up to 160mph.  Yoikes.  For some perspective, it's difficult to walk or drive a vehicle at about 58mph.  Muifa, by the way, means Plum Blossom in Chinese.  But wind over 120mph just does not make me think of sweet, pink flowers.  Who picks these names?!

plum desktop

These two simply do not resemble one another. 

(we are the long, slim island on the left, at the bottom of the chain)

All seems well for Mark in Cambodia.  Abby Grace prayed for him tonight before dinner, "God, please keep Daddy from stepping on the bombs that are in the ground still in Cambodia."  Truly, a typhoon and bugs seem pathetic compared to the reality that over 300 Cambodians die each year after stepping on remaining land mines from the killing fields years in the 1980s.  The Lord is indeed redeeming that country and I am so thankful there is a team there from the Harbor witnessing what God is doing.

Here's a great picture of Mark at an elementary school in Phnom Penh today.  The team is serving with Asian Hope in Cambodia's capital right now.

photo 15

I can't wait to show Hannah her daddy pointing to her favorite letter in the morning when she wakes up!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The "Calm" Before the Storm

I took Mark to the airport yesterday at 4:45am.  He's leading a mission trip from the Harbor to Cambodia for the next 11 days.  I was home shortly after 6am and Piper blessed me by starting off the day and Mark's departure by chasing down a large rodent, killing it, and playing with it like a beach ball in a mosh pit in my front yard.  When I went outside and yelled "Release!" in my best Cesar Milan voice, she merely volleyed the rat/shrew into the air and went chasing after it.  I had to bribe her with tons of treats before she was willing to put it down.  Then I had to come between her and the large, nasty dead thing, get her into the house, and muster up the nerve to pick it up and put it in the trash.  In an effort to quickly get rid of the rat/shrew before the kids work up and before missing the early garbage truck I decided to use a shopping bag to pick up the rodent.  So nasty.  It was squishy.  

The whole ordeal was disgusting, but much less traumatic than the time that Zoe was 10 months old and I found her playing with a dead rat in the backyard--also on Mark's first day out of town for a trip back then too.  

I've noticed an increase in rodent body parts in my yard and parking lot over the past few weeks--I think Piper is a hunter.  Eeww.  Below is a picture of Piper with the "toy" in her mouth.  Trust me, it looked way bigger in real life.  I had to capture the moment on my iphone and email Mark what he was missing already.  He may be going to to a third world country, but I bet he won't hold any dead rats this week. 

I've been spending tons of time with Kristie and her sweet son Hudson, as Kristie's husband Ron is also on the Cambodia trip.  Here are our kids tonight devouring frozen yogurt and playing on the beach. 

Hannah got a massive haircut, but I'll have to blog about that later.  Suffice it to say she looks adorable! 

Gotta love the kanji sign for Japanese food on the left, right next to A&W "All American Food" on the right, with the ubiquitous Japanese ferris wheel in the middle. 

It's hard to tell that we have a Category 4 typhoon bearing down on us.  The girls and I prepped all day for Typhoon Muifa's forecasted arrival tomorrow.  It's supposed to be pretty bad and last through Sunday morning. Here's a picture of the gigantic storm and itty bitty Okinawa on the left. 

We're expecting sustained winds over 110 mph and gusts up to 150.  I'm scared.  I do trust the Lord, though, and it'll be a chance to walk by faith.  It's not a willing walk, but it's a walk in faith, nonetheless! 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Summer Fun

Here are a bunch of photos of what we've been up to this summer.  School ended in June, I went on a girls' weekend to Hong Kong, and each day since then has been full of family and ministry.  We're blessed.


Zoe and Abby Grace hiking with friends

Lucy and Abby Grace

Love Olives

Our family--see my heart-shaped rock? 

Zoe and Rebekah

With BFFs Kristie Coia and Jen Rathmell

Victoria Harbor in Hong Kong

Science Fair at the end of the School Year
Zoe did Space

Rebekah did Electricity

Abby Grace did Bugs

Zoe won First Place in her Age Group

Abby Grace requires us to house a bug zoo in our home.  She is a bug fanatic!

This butterfly came from a caterpillar Abby Grace caught. 

Mark took all the girls to a Father-Daughter Ball--they were super spoiled and so enchanted with their Dad! 

In front of a traditional Okinawan home. 

Date night at home--take out sushi--our favorite. 

On a camping trip on nearby Izena Island.  Not a bad place for a farm, huh?  What a view!

Hannah is hilarious--and she knows it!

Beautiful  Izena sky. 

These signs are a new sight since the horrible tsunami in March. 

Walking through a huge underground cave with friends Kelly and Jossy. 

Piper is getting big!

Zoe turned 8!  We had her party at a pool. 

Rebekah turned 14!  Her friends came over for a slumber party.  Here they are picking mulberries in our tree in our front yard. 

Abby Grace was baptized on July 4th by Mark. 

Our family on July 4th.