Tuesday, June 28, 2011

One Day

This past weekend a couple months worth of planning and preparing came to fruition. Our church participated in One Day, a Saturday spent loving on our community. We focused on Malabon Elementary school, painting, landscaping and cleaning up. It wasn't elaborate, it wasn't immense, but it was powerful.
We had over 140 people who came to help, joining together to bless someone else, and work out this faith thing. We had friends from Casa De Luz, a Latin church in the neighborhood, come and help, as well as PTO members and a couple community people. My cousin came down from Portland and spent the day with the landscaping crew. A neighborhood middle schooler stopped by in the morning, asked if he could help and stayed the whole day. We laughed, we sweated, we worked hard. But at the end of the day we were spent, and it felt good.
This picture is the only one I snapped the whole day, but to me, it holds huge significance. One of the projects was to repaint the United States out on the black top of the playground. Its sort of a funny thing to ask if you can do, but we really wanted to bring the color back to the playground, and luckily the school principal said ok. This was the last project to be done, so many people were watching, joking around with each other, making sure those with paint brushes were doing the job right. It was joyful and kind. And this picture means a lot to me now...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

One Year! Already??

Last Sunday marked our one year anniversary. REALLY?? It seems like just yesterday I was putting on that white dress, stepping into those cowgirl boots and walking down the grassy aisle. Its been an incredible year, and I am blessed to be married to Mr. Landon Baron.
Here are a few high lights from the first year:
  • Our wedding: so many family and friends in one place was like Heaven! Plus the 3.5 lb chocolate truffle was incredible
  • Our honeymoon: Central Oregon for eight days with no agenda, no responsibilites, and each other. Did I mention we didn't have an agenda??
  • The 1572 West Broadway house: though cold in the winter, it was a cute little place,perfectly situated near tons of fun stuff, and wonderful for taking walks.
  • Having my sister as a roommate before she moved overseas.
  • Weekends off: I had to start working nights instead, but oh well. I love having weekends off with Landon!
  • Mountain biking together!
  • Beginning attendance at Westside Church: such a unique group of people, and so what we both needed and wanted.
  • The Fendall Campout
  • Our birthday bash: backyard 'fiesta', again with a ton of favorite people, summer warmth and some sweet lights Steve made for us.
  • My road bike: happy birthday to me!
  • Bungee Jumping: Landon's birthday present!
  • Thanksgiving goodness: yum
  • Our Christmas tree: it took up 1/6 of our tiny living room. It was a presence.
  • The seven Christmas get togethers: yep. We made it to every one of them.
  • Random trip to PDX: fancy hotel room and The Civil Wars in concert. Lovely.
  • Weddings: Brian and Brittany Hughes, Scott and Erin Carroll, Ethan and Jessie Lohse, Justin and Carmen Meyers.
  • Random get togethers with friends: the Lenkers, Tim and Jen, Brittney, the Cantrall's, my awesome cousins!
  • Camping, fishing, mountain biking, runs, walks, coffee dates, sushi dinners, road trips...
  • Our second home: 2000 sq. ft. warehouse. Enough said.
  • Learning to be who we are, as a couple, and discovering what that means it all its contexts.
Landon Lee, I love you more today than I did a year ago, and look forward to another year full of adventure, craziness and a whole lot of fun. You are a better fit for me than I ever could have imagined, and I am so grateful for you every day.
Thank you for loving me. -- Your wifey

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Yesterday afternoon my cousin returned from Iraq. He had been deployed for a year, barely missing my wedding, with only a few days back at home around Christmas time for the holidays and his younger sister's wedding. As if him being gone wasn't hard enough, it was compounded by the fact that his relatively new bride was still here, attempting to live life and take her classes and remain hopeful of his return. She and I have become good friends in the past year and a half, so much so that I almost forgot the reason I met her was because she married my big-brother-of-a-cousin in December of 2009. So instead of it just being my cousin missing his wife, the reality was now my good friend missing her husband and wishing his return date would just arrive already. Well, by God's grace and provision they reunited yesterday, bringing to a close this period of time of separation. Never again will they have to be thousands of miles apart for reasons outside of their own wishes. They can go to sleep next to one another and wake up in those same arms every night, now.
I suppose it is the romantic side of me coming out, but I can't help but shed some tears of joy over this reunion. I can't explain how happy it makes me, and how ecstatic I am to know my cousin is safely home.
Thank you for serving, Jed. Thank you.
Every parting is a form of death, as every reunion is a type of heaven. - Tryon Edwards

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Surprise Party!!

This past weekend we made the drive up to Salem to help throw a surprise 30th birthday party for my awesome sister-in-law, Kelsey. It was so much fun, she was surprised, and the whole thing was a success.
One of the best parts was that we were able to hang out with this face:
Ezra and Uncle, bonding.
While we waited for the birthday girl to arrive, we played.
Love this wee-little-man. And his expression in this picture, especially.
A few shots of the set-up and spread. We got Kels a Sweet Life cake: Chocolate Rhapsody. Amazing.
Elliott telling his mom that he's ready for cake. Lets by-pass lunch and get to dessert.
"Happy Birthday to YOU!!"
Blowing out her '30' candles with the help of the boys!