Tag Archives: travel

Tiny little ship

I have nothing to write about, except that I’m going to Papua New Guinea the day after tomorrow.

Whoa. Just whoa.

It’s pretty much the only thing on my mind at the moment.

I can think of nothing else.

Excited? Way too small a word.

There is organizing and list-building and list-crossing-off and emailing and errands and laundering and packing and cleaning…. and and and… lots to do.

But you know what? It’s all for PNG.

I can’t stop thinking about it.

I’m probably not going to sleep for the next three weeks as the four of us share a cabin smaller than our kitchen. I’ll say good-bye to facebook and instagram and pinterest and blogging. I’ll have micro showers and wear the same two shirts every-other-day. I’l not be able to pop down to the shops when I run out of something or realize I’ve forgotten something. No nightly news or long walks around the neighborhood. No time alone. No googling when I don’t know the answer to something! *gasp*

I’ll be on a tiny little ship based out of a tiny little cabin doing tiny little work that will make a great big difference.

And you know what else?

It’s gonna be amazing.

And it will probably change our lives.

It will certainly change the future.

Ummmm, did I tell you I can’t wait??!

STOP.

Q for you: When’s the last time you were preparing to do something that you were SO excited about??

Love,
A

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited.

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Extravagance just because

It’s day two in America and we are well and truly in holiday mode.

Aside from some crazy jet lag, everything is as perfect as possible. We are enjoying being unscheduled and moving slowly and having time together with our family.

There was a bag waiting for us when we arrived, put together from our church to welcome us.

It was full of some of our favorite American goodies that we can’t get in Australia – Cheerios, cheddar Chex Mix, Payday candy bars, Sour Patch Kids, A&W root beer, Reeces Pieces, pink lemonade, and kettle corn. There were even a few little gifts for the kids.

None of this is stuff that we need. (Um, who needs junk food?!)

But that was just the point – to bless us “above and beyond” the necessary. And to make us smile.

It’s amazing how little things can make such a big impact.

Being welcomed with a package like that – full of the treats we adore and miss – made us feel so welcomed, cared for, and appreciated.

As much as God wants to provide for our needs, he also loves to do things just to make us smile.

Extravagance, generosity, hospitality, abundance – those are all marks of our God.

Apparently our church family knows that too.

They reflect him so well.

STOP.

 

Q for you: When is the last time you were blessed to receive something you didn’t need, but wanted “just because”?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


Jitters

I have the pre-first-day-of-school jitters.

The kind where you’re so excited that it’s hard to even imagine going to sleep.

Except that I’m not going to school tomorrow… I’m going to America.

Well, technically I’m not going to America. I’m going to Sydney so we can leave for America the next morning.

But whatever.

Tomorrow’s the day we pack our toothbrushes and board the plane.

Tomorrow’s the day we switch into holiday mode.

Tomorrow’s the day we go on a family adventure.

Tomorrow’s the day we head from winter into summer. (Oh please God, give us summer-ish weather in Oregon. Please?)

Between the excitement of the Voice finale and the trip beginning tomorrow, who knows if I will ever fall asleep tonight. But for everyone’s sake, I’d better go and try.

STOP.

 

Q for you: When’s the last time you got those excited jitters I’m talking about?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


Pack your bags, baby

I’m doing something I’ve never done before. I’m packing well in advance of my trip.

And by “well in advance”, I mean four days.

I’m normally a have-all-the-lists-made-in-advance-but-pack-the-day-before sort of person.

But this time, I thought I’d experiment and do it on the weekend since we leave on a Tuesday.

So far, so good.

The biggest thing I’ve noticed is that it’s taking me way longer. Way.

I have too much time to deliberate about what to wear. (And wonder what people are wearing “over there” these days. And what the weather will be like. And if I will have enough pairs of undies.)

Maybe it’s a little less stressful to pack a few days in advance, but I think I like the just-get-it-done pressure of doing it the day before. (It’s just that I’m learning with kids, the less pressure the better. You never know when melt-downs might strike!)

There will still be plenty of “last minute” things to put in – electronics, toiletries, snacks – but I can say that I already have three of the four of us packed. I’ve impressed myself. (And the fourth one can do his own packing.)

The biggest dilema is the shoes. I hate packing shoes.

(How many pairs of shoes do you take when you travel??)

Good thing I still have three more days to change my mind.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Do you enjoy packing or hate it?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


I love my Oregon

“Absence makes the heart grow fonder.” We’ve heard this cliche spoken a million times. Usually in regards to relationships.

But it’s also true of places.

We’re gearing up for a trip to Oregon in two-and-a-half weeks (what?? so soon??!) and my heart is about to explode with excitement about it.

I’ve lived overseas for most of my adult life.

I moved out when I was 17. Took off for Europe when I was 18. Returned to Oregon at 19. Left for Asia at 22. And have been living in Australia since 23.

In the 18ish years I’ve been living on my own, only 4ish of them were actually in Oregon.

But in my mind, Oregon (Central Oregon actually) is this near-perfect place that I always can’t wait to get back to. (Yes, having my family and church and “old” friends there definitely contribute to that.)

I realize that some of my perception has grown out of a longing and homesickness for the familiar, but still, there’s this awareness of just how incredible my little mountain “town” really is.

An awareness that certainly wasn’t there until I “grew up” and moved away.

And I know it’s real because I go back there and it does not disappoint.

It really is that awesome.

Who knows if I’ll ever live there again.

I might live the rest of my days in Australia. Or not.

But I know one thing for certain, my heart is big enough to have two homes (not including my real one in heaven).

I love my Oregon. I can’t wait to introduce the newest Booker boy to her goodness, and my other Booker boys to the glories of her summer.

Two-and-a-half weeks and counting…

until I’ll be home.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Have you experienced the “absence makes the heart grow fonder” phenomenon in regards to a person or a place?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


Going away and coming home

I just returned from the most refreshing three days I’ve had in a long time.

Judah and I went to Sydney where I met up with friends–most of whom I haven’t seen in five years–and visited family.

We ate Thai. We picnicked in the park. We got absorbed in the city. We talked about deep and meaningful issues. We walked miles and miles and miles, pushing strollers all the way.

I had pockets of “alone” time – small ones – but enough to remember how much I love breathing city air and merging into the bustle. (Alone time, meaning just Judah and I.)

There were special moments between my son and I that are hard to articulate, but I’m so grateful for. We’re closer because of it.

It’s hard to explain why this weekend was so perfect, but it just was.

And as I collapsed  into bed last night – exhausted and sore – I had a smile on my face knowing that I’d wake up and go home again.

Home to my family, home to my loves, home to my heart.

Going away is amazing. But coming home is even better.

(I missed this guy.)

I’m so grateful for this weekend away. My heart is truly full.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Have you been away lately? Do you love coming home as much as I do?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


Homesick, and the ache of More

It happens to me every. single. time.

A visit to my childhood home approaches and I grow homesick.

Home. Sick.

The closer the trip becomes, the more my heart aches.

It’s been twelve years since I lived in America.

You’d think that the longer I am away, the easier it would become.

But hardships and revelations and babies and friendships make that impossible.

Instead, the ache grows.

I know what it’s like to be a foreigner. To live as an alien in a land not my own.

I know what it means to put roots down and be home, and yet not really home.

As much as the ache aches, it’s also my gift.

Reminding me that I’m not Home. Reminding me that there is More.

My home is in Him.

Homesick for heaven… Homesick for a place I don’t know, and yet know so well.

Sometimes I think it’s the lack of belonging, that hard-to-pinpoint knowing of yes, here I fit.

But I will never really fit.

I realize it’s more than a circumstance, a feeling, an address, a season.

It’s heaven. It’s Him.

I’m homesick for Him.

My home is in Him.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Are you homesick? A foreigner living in a “strange” land? Is this you, too? What do you do with the ache?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


What I hate about Australia (besides giant bugs)

There are so many things to love about Australia:

The sun.

Gorgeous beaches.

Ridiculously cute animals like koalas and wallabies.

Cool buildings like the Opera House.

Indigenous art.

Bush dances.

BBQ culture.

Passionate sports fanatics.

Words and phrases like “mate” and “g’day” and “no worries”.

The amazing (Asian) food that you can find everywhere.

Teh fact that most people don’t take themselves too seriously and are quick to have a laugh.

Morning tea.

Afternoon tea.

I love so much about this nation. So much. (I’ve been here 12 years, duh.)

But there is one thing I hate. (And yes, I know “hate” it a very, very strong word. One I don’t use often.)

Yes, I hate the cockroaches, the ants, and the mosquitoes that I come across on a daily basis… but that’s not what I’m talking about.

What I’m talking about is this:

THE AUSTRALIAN SHOPPING TROLLY.

(Otherwise known as a shopping cart.)

I have never, ever, EVER driven one of these things that steers correctly. Tehy are not made to balance and flow like the American ones.

They simply will not go in a straight line when in less than perfect circumstances.

Going around a bend (with a full cart) is like trying to pull a semi-truck around a hair-pin turn on the side of a mountain pass. Ugh.

Trying to push a cart with 50+ pounds of groceries in it and steering it in teh right direction when there is any remote slope to the ground is virtually impossible… Comparable to crocodile wrestling. (Just try to imagine that.)

I’m convinced that the CEOs of Woolworths and Coles have never gone grocery shopping a day in their lives.

If they had we would be seeing some radical reforms in the trolly department.

A nation that’s built the Sydney harbor bridge, hosted the Olympics, and engineered countless other modern marvels…. yet they can’t figure out how to make a decent shopping cart.

(Embarrassing.)

So this, my friends, is the thing I hate about Australia.

Shopping trollies.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Have you ever tried to wrangle an Australian shopping cart?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


Little space, big dream

Later this year my family and I will be flying to Papua New Guinea where we’ll board the YWAM Medical ship, hole up in a small cabin, and spend a few weeks serving in villages where access to health care is limited.

Along with us will be teams of medical professionals – nurses, dentists, optomotrists, and more.

On board the ship we’ll run dental and optometry and basic health care clinics.

I haven’t been on an outreach like this in years now. Years.

To a YWAMer, that’s like slow death.

Ok, I’m being completely dramatic here. Nobody’s dying. (I’m not dying.)

But I am longing.

Longing to do what I joined this mission to do. Longing to be in the nations, helping people, helping people help themselves. Helping people to know God.

(To be fair, I’ve been doing all those things – in Australia. Just not “out there” in the developing world, which I love so dearly.)

Today we visited the Ship to look at hte rooms and decide where the best place for our little family to stay will be.

We chose a small room, where we’ll put a matress on the floor for Levi and Judah will share the bed with us. During the day, the bed folds up into the wall, leaving a small space for benches and a tiny floor area to play. (Most likely we won’t spend much non-sleeping time in there anyway.)

That little space created a lot of excitement in my heart.

Even though we’ve been planning this outreach for a long time now, today’s short visit to the Ship just made it all seem real.

This is happening.

Can’t wait.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Have you taken your family on an outreach before? Would you like to?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


Wel-a-come [with head shaking “yes” side-to-side] to the best, most wonderful, exotic, truly beautiful, luxurious and historic, most awe-inspiring hotel in all of India…

“The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.”

That’s what my friend told me as we pulled up to the theater.

I haven’t been to a movie in ages and had no idea what was out (except for the Hunger Games – who could not know that’s out?) so I was happy to let her chose the movie and surprise me. After all, she was treating me.

She told me a few times what we were seeing but the name was too long for me to remember.

We sat in the dark as the trailers ran and I asked, “Is is a drama? A comedy? A thriller?”

I had absolutely no idea.

“If I didn’t know you so well,” I said chuckling to her, “I’d be afraid you’re taking me to a porno.”

She looked at me curiously…

“The best exotic hotel?” I questioned (not being able to remember the rest of the name).

She assured me it was not a porno. (Far from it!)

Imagine my surprise and delight when some of the opening scenes revealed that the film is set in India.

Oh my heart. Love.

And then of course the title also made so much sense.

To be honest, it probably could have been a below average movie and I still would have loved it just based on the fact that it was India, blessed India.

She really was one of the main “characters”.

It was a sweet line up of Brittish stars (ie Judy Dench, Maggie Smith,e tc.) and a nice little story line about a bunch of seniors “finding themselves” during a sort of “gap year” for the elderly. (Minus the “year” part.)

(Oh, it also had the adorable star of Slumdog Millionaire… whose name I can’t recall.)

Sweet little story line, quirky characters, and ohhhh beautiful India.

I left with a big smile on my face and a skip in my step.

India. If nothing else, India……. *sigh*

I had no idea that going to the movies on a Wednesday night would leave me so incredibly stir crazy to get out of here.

STOP.

 

Q for you: This was probably the worst (non) movie review ever written considering I mostly just waffled on and on about India. Have you seen the film? What did you think?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited.
Adriel also writes (using spell check!) on motherhood and parenting on The Mommyhood Memos