Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Thanksgiving Weekend

Paige and Samuel Malavsky
David, Rusty and Todd (A scary crew!)
All 12 of the Burchard grandkids
Abby and Matthew Malavsky
Gaby wearing her Christmas stockings!
My dad and brother came to visit from Ohio!

We had a wonderful time during our visit to Florida for the Thanksgiving holiday. I'm not sure how we were able to cram so much stuff into 6 days, but I'm so glad we did! We started off at Rusty's parents house in Port St. Lucie. The kids had a marvelous time hanging out with their cousins (all 9 of them!) and Rusty and I were able to spend some time visiting with his parents and brothers and their wives. It brings a whole new defintion to the saying "quality, not quantity" when you know the next visit might be a year away! On Thanksgiving Day we headed to my sister's in Ft. Myers (home for the past 12 years) to spend the rest of our stay. My sister and I were part of the crazy nuts who went shopping at 4:00 in morning on Black Friday. We have done this the past 4 years and we always have a great time! It's so much more about being together than the great sales. (although we did find quite a few!) We went to church Sunday morning at MBC and it was great to catch up with old friends. I really thought the trip would make me homesick for Florida, but again, God is so faithful and I never felt more at home then when I saw the pear trees that line our street! (see post below...)

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

It's Good to be Home....

It's always wonderful spending time with family and friends, but it's also great to be back home. This is what Rusty and I woke up to this morning. Isn't it beautiful? I so love this place!

Monday, November 19, 2007

One of the 1000 Reasons "I Love Megan Hunt!"

This morning Megan hands me three gift bags for the kiddos. She tells me that there is one for each of the kids for the ride to Florida. When I picked them up from school to get ready to head out of town, I let them open the bags. Inside were fun goodies all wrapped up with fun captions on each, like, "hungry?" with a snack inside and "to brighten your day!" with a booklight for reading tonight. All Paige could say was "She's so awesome!" and I would have to agree!! Love ya Meg! See ya in the FL!!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

On the road again....

Like I said before, I don't do so well when Rusty and I are apart.... I'm sure it's something I should be over with by now, but about 48 hours is about all I can stand..... The kids and I decided to push up our leaving by a day. Instead of driving all day Tuesday, we plan to leave tomorrow around 1:00. I am praying this makes the traveling easier (lots of night time driving; hopefully this means sleeping and not fighting children!) I know this will be very disapointing to some of you (Ha Ha Ha!!), but I'm not sure if I will be posting much over the next week. I am really looking forward to spending some time doing a bunch of nothing all week. If I don't get a chance to post, I'm sure after spending a week with both sides of our family, I will have plenty of stories and pictures when we get back. Have a safe and very happy Turkey Day!!

Friday, November 16, 2007

A Night Out On The Town

So tonight, Lara, Lauren, Megan and myself, decided that loading up 5 kids and heading into Charlotte's Uptown district sounded like a good plan! I have no idea what on Earth we were thinking! We started out at a place called "The Penguin". The entire resturant could have fit in our house with some room left over! Needless to say, we decided to find another alternative to the hour or so wait we had before us. 5 kids + 1 hour wait = 1 bad idea!! We ended up at a resturant called, "Rockbottom Resturant and Brewery" in downtown Charlotte. The food was great and the fellowship was even better! We ended up having a great time and the kids were all angels (at least once we got to the resturant they were!). The above is a picture of poor Miss Lauren smooshed between 3 of the five kiddos, and the kids standing outside the resturant (mind you, it was about 30 degrees outside!)

4 Days to Go!

Only four days until I head home for Thanksgiving. I am so excited and can't wait to see all of our family. It has only been 6 months since we left, but I guess knowing that everyone is an 11 hour drive away makes them feel so distant. Rusty left yesterday to work a side job in West Palm Beach. It's great money (which we need right now!) but I hate being away from him. I do miss him when he's not here. I have a dear friend whose husband has been in Africa on a mission trip for the past 11 days. Since he's been gone, her youngest son (3 months old) has been diagnosed with RSV and hospitalized! She has been living on a few hours sleep and lots of caffeine! I told her today at lunch that she was my hero and that I thought she was an amazing woman! I am already complaining and Rusty's been gone less then 24 hours! I guess I'm a wimp!! Oh well, I still miss him! Florida - here we come!!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Going Home

In a week our family will be heading home for the Thanksgiving holiday. I am so excited to be going back to Florida, even if it is just for a week! I am looking forward to spending some time with family and friends and just enjoying the holiday. I have so many reasons to be thankful this season. God has so richly blessed our family this past year! I have missed my sister and brother-in-law so very much and thoughts of my sweet nieces have been my sunshine on those cloudy days when home just seems so far away. I can't wait to just sit and talk with Sofie and hear how her first year in "big school" is going and it really doesn't matter what Gaby says, I just love to hear the sound of her voice! I know how excited our families are that we are coming home and I was thinking how it doesn't even compare with how God must feel when when one of His children comes back to Him! Ridge is in our second week of the Jonah series, and it has been awesome! Andy has been talking about running away from God and how even when He should punish us from running, He doesn't. How He uses circumstances in our life to bring us back to Him; not "pay us back" for what we have done. The Lord has used so many circumstances this year to bring Rusty and I back to the foot of the cross, and there is no place in the world I would rather be right at this very moment!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Small Groups

kitch•en (kich’en) n. a room or place for the preparation and cooking of food. — Webster’s definition doesn’t help you much, does it? But think about it. What is the most popular room in your home? Where do you end up when guests or family come over? The kitchen. This is where lasting friendships are made. And that’s the kind of environment you will find in our small groups at Ridge. Our small group is a place where Rusty and I can meet with a group of friends each week and just “do life” together. I can honestly say that without this support network, our move to North Carolina would have been nearly impossible. We didn’t know what a blessing our small group would become to us, but I know that the people I have met through our groups have been most of the reason I am so completely in love with this place! In the past, with both of us working in the ministry, little or no time was left for Rusty and I to be involved in any sort of Sunday school type of environment. I had no idea what I missing! Our groups are a safe place to open your heart, share your life, and ask the tough questions. Our group is starting the video series, “Go Fish” by Andy Stanley and I know that major life change has happened in many of the couples lives (Including ours!) during the last few series, so I am looking forward to next Tuesday and to what God has in store for us!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

How the Ridge Does Halloween

Last night the Burchard's celebrated their first Halloween in NC and we had a great time! Our children had never been "Trick-or-Treating" before last night. They had a wonderful time! We decided to have a Halloween party with our family from Ridge before the 30 of us hit Lake Park for some serious candy gettin'! Yes, I said 30 of us! We have an amazing family here at Ridge and we had an amazing time just hanging out and eating some yummy "scary" snacks! Thanks to all of you that were here last night, I hope your Halloween was as wonderful as mine!!