J was asked to speak at a high school retreat at Wi-Ne-Ma Christian Camp on the coast of Oregon, and we were so excited when they were more than happy to have our whole family come! After flying into Portland (which is even more beautiful and green than we expected) we stopped off at the most amazing bookstore, Powell's Books. It is literally the size of a city block and carries almost every used and new book you could possibly want. J and I had to drag ourselves out of a store for a change. After "book heaven" we headed out to the coast, where we spent the rest of our week.
Wi-ne-ma is a gorgeous camp nestled between a forest-surrounded lake and the beach. We had a rustic little cabin where we all shared a double bed, but luckily we didn't spend too much time in there. The kids adored being around the high school kids (and we adored their help!) There was a playground, swings, tetherball, and basketball hoops in the middle of camp.
We also got to try tons of new things like canoeing, swimming in a lake, catching little guppies in our hands, going on a water slide, high school worship times, wading in little pools on the beach, and getting covered in dirt from head to toe. One of my favorite random activities was the cheese factory, but that will be a post in itself. I love a good random adventure and must do it justice.
And another bonus was that because we flew into Portland, I got to see my dear friend Sarah twice that week! (And, we may have made a stop at Roloff farms - I know you TLC fans know what I'm talkin' about!)
Our week was exhausting for sure with a whole lot of "kid wrangling" (I may or may not have fallen asleep while parked in a lot after driving the kids around for a nap drive!) But, being able to do a little ministry with J was totally worth it. And, having people cook for you and do the dishes for a week was a nice little bonus. We loved meeting such great people, and J did a wonderful job of exposing the kids to God's heart for the poor. It was a great reminder for me, too, to see the trials people are facing in Africa with fresh eyes, and to long to get involved anew.