Favorite Photo Friday {family fun in SC}

I'm trying to catch up on the backlog of photos I have from this summer.  
These were taken from our family trip to SC in July to visit my parents for their 50th wedding anniversary.  
The beaches in SC are perfect for Spencer's love for skim boarding.
He was in his element body surfing and loving the big waves.  
Lily on the other hand was content playing in the sand and building sandcastles.  
She loved spending time with her Aunt Debbie and Uncle Jim as well as her cousins Marlee and Kelly.  
Lily adores the beach.  Even tonight as I was tucking her into bed she asked me when we were going back to the beach :))
One night we headed out to Murrells Inlet to take some family photos at sunset.
This is one of my all time favorites of them...I love the way they are walking hand in hand looking at each other.  
In true Spencer fashion he asked if he could jump over Lily.  She was a great sport as you can see her giving him big smiles and a round of applause for clearing his jump :))
The bond they share has been close from the day they met.
 Spencer is only with us every other week and tonight Lily spent about 30 minutes making him a card and asked if she could mail it to him.  Michael helped Lily address it and they walked it out to the mailbox tonight...now it's just waiting to be picked up tomorrow :))

They are the light and joy of our family and we look forward to seeing another little one running around in the photos with them in the days ahead.
{Some of you have asked about our paper chase...we are waiting to receive our approval from immigration and hoping that we are nearing the end of our 60-90 day wait.  Once we receive the approval all dossier paperwork will be authenticated and then translated by our agency to be sent to China...yay!!!}

When I look at Spencer it is hard for me to believe that he was Lily's age when I first met him.
How quickly time passes and how proud we are of the young man he is becoming.  
I love the innocence and wonder of these photos...wish I could freeze these moments in time.    

Together as family...not something I'm always able to capture behind the camera but thankful for this as a reminder of our time together.  
My sweet Mom and Dad on the night we celebrated their 50th anniversary.  
What a blessing it is to have parents who show love and commitment through the joys and valleys of life.  
So grateful for the gift of family and the blessing to all be together to celebrate my parent's milestone.
Even my grandmother surprised us by making the trip to be with us which was an added gift we will always remember.
2013-09-12_0016These are a few i-phone candid photos from the week that capture more of the fun we had.
Thank you Mom and Dad for setting a great example for our family and leaving us a strong legacy of faith, hope and love.  We love you!

the long road


Back to School

This week Lily starts back to her regular schedule for preschool.  
She reminds me daily that she is "almost 4" and that she will soon be as tall as me :))  
One of my prayers for her during our adoption journey was that God would give her a bright mind that was eager to learn.  
She thrives on learning new things, loves to do her speech homework and she is persistent to keep trying even when it is hard.  We are humbled daily by God's provision and the way He has answered our prayers.  
2013-09-09_0005 Lily has a fun sense of humor...most days there is a big smile on her face and a joy for life that is contagious.  
Other days she can be more serious and quiet but that is definitely an exception to the rule.  
Her favorite question lately is "what do we do next?" or "what do I do after nap?"  She is a girl on the go who loves structure.  With all the new things we have added to her week (violin, ballet, soccer and speech) I'm thinking a picture calendar with all her activities might be a good thing to make together to help her (and me) keep it all straight :)  
One thing we know for sure is that she LOVES ice cream and with eyes like this it's pretty hard to resist a sweet treat every now and then :)) 
We cashed in a free cup of yogurt at Sweet CeCe's after taking these pictures.  
We were supposed to share it but as you can see with her gigantic bites, I mainly got the leftovers.  
Even with chocolate lips... her smile always brightens up my day!

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