Thursday, July 28, 2011

Savannah and Noah's Rugged Adventure

The beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains

Me and a friend from church getting their punishment after Kangaroo Court

A horse farm in the Shenandoah Valley

The youth group and counselors at Crabtree Falls, the highest waterfall on the East Coast. The teens hiked all the way up to the top, in 100 degree + weather.

The view from the top of the waterfall. It was a very tiring and long hike up but the view was worth it.

We just had a heat wave last week with some record temperatures; the same week that Noah and I went camping with our church's youth group. It was really, really hot but everyone still had a great time playing games, hiking, bonding, and getting closer to God.

This was posted by Savannah.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

It's HOT!

 Sweet Sophia cooling off with Daddy.
If you've been following the news, you will have heard that we are having record high temperatures. On Friday, the heat index (temp. and humidity) was 122 degrees! Well, when it's that hot there are two choices - stay inside or go swimming.  The kiddos love swimming, but I'll take Seattle weather, thank you! Thank you to the Budkes for providing this fun time for us.
 Is this how the scuba divers do it? Looks good Sammy!

 Nathan takes a running dive.
 Victoria and her pal Mr. Wes Budke, the owner of this awesome pool.
 Jeremiah, proud of his swimming abilities. He has graduated from life vest to floaties.

Sammy taking a break on the lounger. This is the good life on a hot day!
The elusive Noah swims away. He's hard to catch. Savannah was equally hard to catch.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Photos of the Smith children

Here are a few photos of the children taken within the last two months. I am trying this out to see how it works. Our computer is older and it is hard to view the images before adding them. It is also a very slow process! I will try videos later. Russell bought me a FLIP and I am still learning about that, too. Thankfully, I have children to keep me up to date! I'm not that old, am I?

Friday, July 22, 2011

Wow, we did it!

We actually posted to our blog! I have been meaning to do this for a looooong time, but there were always more pressing matters. Our lives are about to change dramatically. We are ready for change. My head is spinning - excited, nervous, thankful, overwhelmed, in awe of God and His ways. The road has been bumpy over the last year bringing us to this very place. He has made our path clear and we are ready to go. We have been searching for the path for some time. We knew that God was directing us somewhere, but we didn't know where. God's ways are not our ways and we couldn't see the big picture until we stepped out in faith.  Retirement from the Coast Guard was a big step of faith. We had job security and a good paycheck. But, it was a step that Russell felt clearly led to take after some trials and much prayer.  It would be wrong to tell you that we never doubted the decision was the right one, though. Our faith did waver on occasion. There were even some sleepless nights, but we stuck with it. We continued to seek God and our faith grew and we marveled at the door that was opened for us. More doors continue to open and God is answering our earnest prayers of "Lord use us, just show us how and where." So we are preparing for a move date of August 18th. It's so soon, yet it feels that we've waited so long for our "orders". We are ready to go....mostly. It will be so hard to say goodbye to dear friends and those who have become like family over the past five years. It will be bittersweet to leave Calvary Baptist Church and the sweet family of God there. We leave behind friends from Flat Run Baptist Church as well, and many good neighbors. I know the Lord will give comfort to us and to those we leave behind. We just want to be in the center of His will. We are so looking forward to serving at Westside Baptist Church, reconnecting with old friends and family, and hopefully, making a difference in the lives of others. To God be the Glory - Great things he hath done.