Summertime, and the living is... not quite as crazy as usual

Once school is out, daily pressures decrease somewhat. But with many different bodies in our family, we end up heading quite a few directions. Here's a glimpse of what my children, grown and not so grown, are up to this summer.

Andrew, 26, is spending the summer in Dayton, OH, working with a research team at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Andrew is nearing the end of his graduate program in electrical engineering at Purdue, and Lord willing, should graduate with his PhD in about a year or so. He was happy to learn that the apartment he's subletting for the summer is a few blocks from a climbing gym and that his colleagues asked him to bring his kayak along. 

Kara (24), Collin and sweet Annie (20 months) are eagerly looking forward to the birth of Annie's little sister sometime in August.

Kristen (21) has just completed her sophomore year at Purdue and is home for the summer. She's loving nursing school, and misses assessing patients and giving meds. Yep, she's one of those nurses who delights in poking people. Her summer work at a local natural grocery and deli doesn't satisfy her nursing desires, so she has to take that out on her siblings. Here she auscultates willing victim, sister Manda.

Seriously, it's been a great year for Kristen, and the Lord was very gracious in giving her some wonderful professors, excellent clinical experience, and a sweet roommate. Kristen and Andrew go to the same church, and once again we are thankful for Andrew watching out for a younger sister. Kris has written a bit about her year on her blog.

Jonathan, 17, will be spending his summer mowing lawns and writing computer code for the church website. Jon has one more year at home, and will be trying to figure out the Lord's plans for him following high school. For fun Jon does Brazilian jiujitsu.   

Peter, 16, is has become an avid distance runner in the past year and a half. Since he doesn't have a high school team to compete with, he participates in a local road race series. Running has been so good for Peter as a way to develop self-discipline and meet folks in the community. Here's a picture of Peter (blue shorts) at the start line of a race at McCormick's Creek where he came in first over all!

Manda, 14, enjoys spending time outside, especially creating a lovely garden area near her tree house. She buys some plants and transplants other wildflowers and ferns, and has created a large patio and paths from stones she and her siblings bring up from the creek.

Faith will turn 13 in a couple of weeks, bringing our teen count up to four. As you might guess from this pic, she's our goofster and drama girl. Life's always fun with Faith around! Here (taken a month or so ago) she's hugging some blueberry blossoms in anticipation of eating her favorite fruit. Faith loves to play the piano, read and pick blueberries.

Paul, 10, can often be found up in a tree. If not there, he might be at "Hotel Summerdell" a place Paul and Ben have worked on deep in the woods where our creek makes a bit of a water hole.

Ben, 7, likes to climb trees as well. But his all-time favorite activity is bouncing on the trampoline. When we are in school, he takes frequent short breaks by running outside to jump for a bit. It keeps him happy and lets him bounce off steam. While he jumps, Ben entertains himself with crazy little stories he makes up.

Well, that's what the kids are up to. Tim and I have the usual activities. Tim's working, serving the church, and raising kids. I'm trying to bring order to the house by cleaning and decluttering, tending the garden, writing some reviews, and prepping for the next school year. Next week we're making a short trip to Mammoth Cave National Park, and Tim and I have something pretty special planned in late July to celebrate our 30th anniversary. But more on that later!


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