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Applauding April -- in Which We Review the Month

April was a month away from home for us.  We spent only four days of the entire month at home.  We were also gone the final week of March.  Sometimes it's not easy being away that much, but we are so thankful for everybody who finds a nice comfortable place for us to sleep and fixes amazing meals and takes us on special outings!

April started out in the best way possible -- celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  All of my life, all that I do, my purpose, and my joy is because Jesus rose from the dead.  So this is quite possibly the most important day of the year!

We were with Dan and Kelly and the twins, Levi and Everett.  We had fun taking some photos of them.  

Unfortunately I forgot to take photos of anything else that day!  Dan and Kelly invited friends over for lunch and we enjoyed sharing Easter dinner with them.  They brought these beautiful tulips.  It was still so cold out that it was nice to have this glimpse of spring indoors.

John had had surgery in Michigan the last week of March, so we spent several weeks with Dan and Kelly while he recuperated (he's doing great!).  We read to the twins and played with them a lot.  

My favorite is playing cars with them.  We line them all up and then see which can go fastest across the dining room floor.  Their favorite is to see which tastes the best. 


 It's also hilarious to watch them staring up in open-mouthed wonder at Grandma reading and acting out The Barnyard Dance.  Oh yes, I'm sure you can just imagine me and the word "dance" in the same sentence!  There were lots of other books we read, too.

From Michigan, we moved on down to Ohio to visit Suzanne and Theo, Tera, Hezekiah, and "Heavenly".  On the way down we stayed overnight with John's brother, Jim and BethAnne, in Cleveland.  I didn't take any pictures, but I did get this nice one a few weeks later when we saw them again.

On our first full day at Suz and Theo's, they had the kids open these t-shirts and guess the meaning of the numbers.  

Heavenly was born in 2006, Tera in 2014, Kiah in 2016, and New Baby will be born in 2018!  Unfortunately, Suzanne is feeling pretty rotten.  We're all hoping, for her sake, that she gets over the morning sickness quickly.  She's been spending a lot of time here on the couch.

Kiah sure loves being outdoors.  I said something about going for a walk, and there he was at the door with his coat on, ready to go!


Tera's favorite thing is looking at the pictures on my phone.  

But she likes to be outside, too.

This was the weather one day.

And this was the weather just a few days later.

Yes, twirling in circles is how spring should be celebrated!

We told Suz and Theo to go away for 24 hours and we would take care of the kids for them.  (We also did a couple of date nights for Dan and Kelly.)  They got away to Cincinnati and we took the kids out to Clifton Gorge.  Kiah actually walked a full mile. 

They loved their picnic supper, which was followed by petting the animals and eating ice cream at Youngs. 

The next day was rainy, but we went to the library and had an indoor picnic, eating lunch on a blanket on the living room floor.  The sun eventually came out enough for us to head back outdoors.

Suzanne treated us to a Chris Tomlin concert and we took Heavenly with us.  It was so much fun to go on a special outing with just her and she loved her first-ever Christian concert.  The artists included Chris Tomlin, Matt Maher, Tauren Wells, Kim Walker Smith, Christine DiClario, and Pat Barrett.  Christine DiClario sang in Spanish, so I think she was Heavenly's favorite.  Matt Maher was mine!  Chris Tomlin's pastor gave a message on the Hebrew words in the Psalms for "praise" and Heavenly was repeating some of those words the next day.  Impressive!

Suz's friend, Tam, from high school, came for a few days and we overlapped for about 24 hours.  

We invited the Phillips, who were dorm parents starting the year after Tam and Suz left.  Corrine also got to come ... she was a student starting a year or two after Tam and Suz.  It was great to have a mini Sahel Academy/Niger reunion.

Our next visit was to John's brother, Dave and Debbie in Marquette, Michigan.  That is a LONG ways up there and it was still really cold and snowy there.  On the way up, we had to cross the Mackinaw Bridge, but it was closed for a few hours because ice was falling.  So we explored Mackinac City a bit, then just sat in the car and waited.  It made us three hours late arriving.

The next day we went out and saw Marquette, saw some local sites, and visited Presque Isle.  Maybe that means "almost an island" because it's actually a peninsula. 

We had a nice lunch with Dave and Debbie.  We also spent time with their girls, but I didn't get any pictures of them.

From there we returned to Dan and Kelly's, stopping along the way to visit a supporter who lives in northern, but not the upper peninsula, of Michigan.

The big event on April 21st was Levi and Everett's first birthday.  Kelly's parents and sister came, as well as Jim and BethAnne, and Suzanne and the kids.  We had the party at a park since their apartment is small.  It was just warm enough to be outside and it turned out to be a beautiful day.

Levi and Everett are something else.  Where one is, the other must be; what one does, the other must also do.  It's really cute to see their bond, though I'm sure there will eventually be fighting over so much shared space.

And that's it for April!


Beth said…
I love those last three pictures of the twins! So fun!

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