Thursday Things

Last Thursday I mentioned the things I wanted to be when I grew up…
Well, I may not have become a truck driver, but I have made many long distance road trips. I may not be a professional photographer, but I love to take pictures. And I may not have joined the Peace Corp or moved to China to teach ESL, but I have traveled the world AND taught at a community college.
I guess it is all about perspective. 


Daniel will often ask me ridiculous questions that involve numbers and I have an uncanny ability to almost always guess the right answer.

Perhaps this is why my second highest score on the ACT in high school was in Science Reasoning {my highest was in Math}. Then I went to college and studied Art. What’s up with that?


I think striped sweaters on babies are incredibly adorable. So are striped socks. And onesies. I think I must have an affinity for stripes.


Daniel and I have been watching Top Gear (UK) on Netflix. 

We recently watched the episode where they have to drive out of the jungles of Bolivia, across the Andes to the Chilean coast

There were several moments that reminded me of Papua New Guinea. 

Daniel and I reminisced about our experience of being in a Landcruiser with Andy Scott back in January of 2005. 

As Andy drove us across a particular bridge near Drima, he was telling us that he had only fallen through that particular bridge once… when he was with my Grandpa… 20 years before. 

As he finished the story, the Landcruiser suddenly started falling. 

My heart was in my throat. 

Thank goodness in PNG they make bridges with 3 beams… the chassis of our vehicle was sitting on the middle beam. 

We all got out and with the help from men from the village and a winch (attached to a very small tree) the vehicle made it across. No harm. No foul.

Thanks Top Gear for the walk down memory lane!


100 things I would like to do in my lifetime:

I have an ongoing list in my mind of things that I would like to do in my lifetime. Over the years I have crossed off some of the things on the list and have added new things. I recently read Mighty Girl’s list and was inspired to commit to writing down my own list. A lot of my dreams have to do with travel and adventure. Some are work oriented and some are personal goals to accomplish some time in my life. I hope that I am someday able to mark off all the things on my list. But if not, I feel truly blessed to have done the things already marked off.

1. Visit all 5 Great Lakes
2. Open a coffee shop/bakery
3. Design a yearly calendar planner 

4. Hike 100 miles on the Tour de Mt Blanc
5. Climb/hike to the highest points in all 50 states {Mt Magazine, AR; Mt. Elbert, CO; Mt. Mitchel, NC; Mt. Rogers, VA; Clingman’s Dome, TN; Mt Washington, NH, Brasstown Bald, GA}

6. Visit Patagonia
7. Tramp the Milford Track in New Zealand
8. Scuba dive on the Great Barrier Reef
9. Learn how to ride a motorcycle/get my motorcycle license

10. Become a mother
11. Get a dog
12. Raise and train a puppy
13. Design and print a family cookbook
14. Stay married until “death do us part” 

15. Bike tour in SouthEast Asia
16. Climb Mt. Kilimanjaro
17. Learn how to sail
18. Ride 4-wheelers in the mountains 

19. Bike a century
20. Participate in a triathlon
21. Host a Thanksgiving dinner
22. Make Christmas stockings
23. Design and build a house
24. Live in Colorado
25. Spend a week canoeing in the Boundary Waters Wilderness Area
26. Visit Yellowstone
27. Hike in the Grand Tetons
28. Raft in the Grand Canyon
29. Visit Carlsbad Caverns
30. Join a spelunking club
31. Visit Havasu Falls
32. Learn how to ski 

33. Ski in the Rocky Mountains
34. Hut-to-hut cross country ski
35. Ride horses on a beach
36. Open a bed-and-breakfast that also offers guided outdoorsy day trips
37. Live in the same city as my parents, sister and brother {as a grown up}
38. Marry my best friend
39. Get married on a budget of less than $2500

40. Knit a sweater
41. Learn how to make fried chicken as good as my mom
42. Visit Denali
43. Drive cross country and tent camp in national forests
44. Own a Land Cruiser
45. Run a half marathon
46. Read 52 books in one year
47. Learn how to mountain bike 

48. Grow my own vegetables
49. Grow my own herbs
50. Keep indoor plants alive
51. Participate in a Muddy Buddy
52. Participate in an Adventure Race
53. Get to and maintain a healthy weight
54. Graduate from college
55. Teach

56. Build a zip line in my back yard
57. Learn and understand how to use CSS to design/develop a web site
58. Design a line of greeting cards
59. Make my own bread {without a bread machine}
60. Go on a cruise
61. Travel overnight in a sleeper car in Europe
62. Hike in the Alps

63. Cook every day for one year
64. Visit Papua New Guinea as a grownup
65. Learn how to scuba dive

66. Go parasailing
67. Skydive
68. Shoot a gun

69. Learn how to crochet
70. Be financially able to retire by age 50
71. Make a profit, buying, renovating and selling a house
72. Illustrate a children’s book
73. Mountain bike in Moab
74. Visit missionary friends in South Africa
75. Visit missionary friends in Papua New Guinea

76. Visit the Great Wall of China
77. Make a quilt
78. Write a book
79. Own a cabin in the woods
80. Fly a plane
81. Learn how to rock climb

82. Go snow shoeing
83. Own rental property
84. Become completely debt free {including mortgage}
85. Sleep on a beach

86. Read my Bible through in chronological order
87. Start a compost pile
88. Visit all of the continents except Antarctica {I only lack Africa and S. America}
89. Use public transportation to commute to work

90. Learn how to roll a kayak
91. Get a haircut I love
92. Join a book club
93. Hike the entire Appalachian Trail {section hike or through hike}
94. Learn how to make and decorate cakes and cupcakes that look and taste professional
95. Participate in building a house with Habitat for Humanity
96. Paddle the Gauley {in the fall}
97. Go Canyoning in Interlaken Switzerland
98. Visit an aquarium

99. Watch an eclipse
100. See a bear in the wild

House Update

We had a house showing on Thursday. It was unexpected. I got the call after a moment of brokenness, crying in my bathroom during my lunch break. Seems like my mom has a similar story – though her story is about wanting a new home after living in a very small house with an outhouse in the mountains of Papua New Guinea. My parents lived in this house for four years, two of which included two small children {my sister and I}. At the end of four years of waiting, my mom had her own moment of brokenness, crying in her outhouse…

Anyways, my house story is not about an outhouse, but it is about waiting for God to answer a prayer request. I was on my way back to work {after the crying in the bathroom} when I received a call requesting a showing for that afternoon. I said YES and turned my car around to ready the house for the showing.
According to the follow-up comments, the couple liked our house. They also liked the area and neighborhood. They are considering a second visit next week, though they were concerned about the windows {which is an understandable concern since the windows are 30+ years old} and they aren’t crazy about our kitchen cabinets. It is in God’s hands. We have let them know we are willing to work with them on the windows.

I am trying to have hope, but to also be realistic, while not allowing myself to become cynical.

Friends from Papua New Guinea

Six-and-a-half years ago, Daniel and I took a 5-week hiatus from life and traveled to Papua New Guinea {PNG}. Daniel had just graduated from college and we were planning on transitioning to Charlotte, NC when we came back to the States. I had my mind set on taking some type of big trip before we settled into the business of post-college life. I also had a desire to go back to PNG and show Daniel where I had lived for the first six years of my life.

When I first presented these ideas to Daniel, he was a little reluctant. He thought that a 2-week vacation would be plenty of time to take off… wouldn’t it be better if we stayed in the USofA? I dug my heels in and proceeded to persuade him to go along with my plan. This led us to a week of camping in Oahu, Hawaii {which is free if you take your own gear} and then 4 weeks in PNG. We spent our first 3 weeks with Andy and Catherine Scott in the highlands – mostly Mt. Hagen where I lived as a child. We were able to take some quick trips into the bush including a trip to Drima where our Land Cruiser “fell through” a bridge on our way up the mountain. Oddly enough when this happened, Andy was in the process of telling us he had only fallen through this bridge once {before}… 20+ years ago when he crossed it with my Grandpa. How’s that for strange?

The Scott’s persuaded us to go down to Madang for a week to spend some time with Jason and Sheryl Moriarty {they also convinced us to take a scuba diving course, which we did}. Jason and Sheryl were gracious hosts. We were able to meet some of the local Christians and they carted us around Madang, showing us the touristy things and taking care of us when Daniel contracted malaria… We initially thought Daniel was having some ear problems from scuba diving and he sat on the boat while I did our last open water dive alone. I came up in time to see Daniel puking over the side of the boat. I figured he was sea sick, but it turned out he was in the early stages of malaria. They drove us to the doctor and helped us acquire drugs to put Daniel on the road to recovery. They gave us advice like, “Don’t tell anyone on the airplane {or at customs in Australia} that Daniel has malaria because they will quarantine you and make you stay in Australia indefinitely…” We took their advice and made it back to the US in one piece {though we did get re-routed through Japan due to a problem with our plane…}.

Anyways, I have lots of stories from our trip to PNG, but I wanted to focus on meeting Jason and Sheryl. I think I actually met Jason when I was in high school, but Daniel and I officially met them in their home in Madang. After our visit, we decided that we wanted to start supporting the Moriarty’s in their work in PNG. So for the past 6 years, we have kept up with them and the work that they have continued to do with the Christians in the area.

Four years ago, they came to visit us in Charlotte. We had just moved into our house and started our renovation process. They were good sports and let us put them to work.

This past Saturday, they came back for another visit. This time they have two precious children and we have a finished house. They are trying to determine if they will continue their work in PNG or head to Cairnes, Australia or possibly somewhere in China. These are big decisions for them. We will continue to support them and pray that God leads them to where they need to be. Hopefully we can visit them wherever they end up… I’m already dreaming up our next international trip 😉

Sorry for not having photos with this post, our trip photos are not digital and my scanner is not hooked up right now.


Ever since I was little, I have had a special place in my heart for this type of swing {seen on Desire to Inspire}. This feeling stems back to when I was a missionary kid in Papua New Guinea and my grandparents had a swing like this on their porch. I remember sitting in it with my oldest cousin, Melita. Now that I am older, I would love to recreate some of that nostalgia and maybe get some pieces of furniture {like this swing} that remind me of my childhood…