Fall and Holidays 2014 (aka…giant recap of the past 4 months)

Well, as some of you know, since our last blog session (from the summer, GAH!), God has given us our answer to the question: where will we be this next year?  We will be here in Okinawa…but with a whole new life!  Seriously, I feel like we prayed and leaned on our faith in God and He upgraded us!

Adam got a new job working as a counselor for the Marine and Family counseling program on the same base as before.  He’s doing actual counseling now instead of program building for a school.  He loves his job (hard though it may be), likes his coworkers and comes home happy!  We moved to the other side of the island (the surf and sun side) and we are LOVING our new house and new neighborhood!  We are  two blocks from everything – from the East China Sea, the park (on the beach), the Pancake House, the farmer’s market, the Family Mart, the grocery store, a delicious Thai food restaurant, my favorite hippy store, the surfing school…it’s great!  It’s quiet here and our second floor balcony looks out on the ocean.  Ah, the life! Although we do miss our regular play dates and our east side friends, I feel like our family is healthier here in all ways (even the lighting is better…so many windows!)

E has started preschool three days a week part time while G and I run errands.  She is excelling there and has found some great friends.

E and her teacher, Ms. Emely, on her first day of school!  How did this happen so fast??

Our dear friends from Oregon, Gregg and Pam Strawn came to the island for a business trip!  The Chibana Church of Christ selected Gregg to come out and preach at a gospel meeting for a week and paid for Pam to join him.  So while he preached at night, we got to play with them during the days!! It was such an encouragement for us to spend time showing them the island and talking about God and life, blessings and struggles…it really brought “home” to us!

Jakkepoes Pancake House for breakfast!
a snorkeling adventure at Maeda Point
Gregg’s injured hand didn’t keep him from snorkeling!
Team Goddard at Maeda Point
Golden Raman at Arashi
Beautiful Pam and her orchids at Bios on the Hill
G trying on Pam’s hat!
a little ice-cream snack while we wait for Pam and Gregg!
Gotta eat at Gen when you visit the island!

G had his first birthday in October and we celebrated with a little party here at the house with Gideon’s friends. He is such a smiley little guy and now runs everywhere with a big ol’ grin on his face.

Cake time!
Too bad it was dairy free…not really as tasty as it should have been…sorry buddy!
A view of our new kitchen…so much light!
My favorite G face!
How could you not love this guy??
Seriously, his cake tasted nasty and he’s STILL smiling!
Proud sister!

We had a fun Halloween party with our church community (the Reids, McCraw Family, Craigs, and the Hyche/Jones’ clan) at the house and ate way too much candy.

our gingerbread skeletons
sweet Caylee
Adam’s Bilbo Baggins would not have been complete without the hobbit feet (hey, that rhymed!)
I love my bats!
ooooo, creepy!
BATS!
BATS!…again!
Bilbo Baggins, Mary Poppins, Elsa and Baby Groot
Cute baby Groot!
And for those of you who haven’t watched Guardians of the Galaxy, here is Baby Groot!
Pippi and Mary (Colleen and I)
Just a spoon full of sugar…
beginning to set the food out (this is before this cloth got all stained)
the “Breakfast Club” came over!
Michelle, Autumn and Austin joined us for some fun!
and some sushi and soy sauce (I love these costumes!)

We threw a Thanksgiving dinner at the house with our lovely friends and neighbors, the Traficans.

My festive Thanksgiving table
with my yomitan pottery village plates!
and some funky wrapped sticks that Eva and I made
and our corn candles!
E, L and G playing before the big meal

We had a lovely Christmas at home this year!  We saw at least four Santa Clauses (Clauss’, Clausi…hmmm), made incredibly strong gingerbread houses that do NOT collapse, but prove to be difficult to eat, E was in a Christmas concert for school (and we discovered that perhaps she’s not a natural stage presence), we watched Christmas movies, listened to way too much Michael Buble Christmas songs and threw a Christmas dinner at the house with the Traficans and friends from our church community (the Reids, McCraws, and the lovely Roxanne).

just one of the many santas…ps. G hated them all!
Christmas morning!! (please ignore the roll of toilet paper in the foreground)
Couldn’t wait to eat it!
I actually enjoyed building these little guys!
I mean, look at those droopy little antlers!  Kind of indicative of her stage fright.

We then watched the final sunset of 2014 on the overlook by our house, eating a delicious taco picnic (with the Traficans…again!) and watching the sun dip down behind the East China Sea.

My boys
Adam and Doug
The ladies and their babies
He’s so metro jack…
besties!
E and E
The last Sunset of 2014

It’s been an AMAZING year!  I am so thankful And at the end of it, looking back, I am assured that God listens, God loves and He thoughtfully sets people, places and events in my life that bless and challenge me.  I am in love with our little family wherever God takes us.  But as of right now, this is the perfect place for us!

January 1st 2015 evening stroll. What a great start to the new year! ps. this photo is completely untouched…it really looks just like this.  I can’t stand it!
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