Phillip went on a 10-day mission trip to Jamaica a few weeks ago. It was the longest he has ever been away from me and the boys, and we sure were happy to have him back.
We picked him up on Thursday and then packed up and headed to church camp that Sunday. The boys had a blast. We packed Buddy's scooter and Little Man's fire truck and they rode those things all over the campground. We went swimming everyday and they hung out with the little camp girlfriend.
I was in charge of camp "craft" again this year. Since it is high school camp, I try to come up with things they will think are cool in addition to teaching them a skill that they can take back home with them. This year we made jersey knit bracelets, and they were a huge hit.
At camp I was able to catch up on some summer reading. I am going through a fiction phase right now and read all three novels by Kate Morton. I absolutely LOVED The Forgotten Garden. It was one of the best novels I have ever read!
We came back from camp that Friday, got a little rest, and then headed up to Tennessee on Saturday to move my sister and her girls back to Georgia to live with us. We turned our large playroom into an apartment of sorts, and we are so happy to have them sharing our home. My sister is my best friend, and her girls are the only cousins my boys have. Every morning the kids wake up so excited to go see if their cousins are awake yet so they can start another day of endless imaginative play. The house is loud and messy and fun, and I love it! I know you are probably curious as to how we arrived at the decision to invite them to move into our home, and I promise I will share that soon.
We also made a kitchen compost bucket using these directions and an old animal cracker container from our church nursery that I had been saving for some crafty project. We do not have an outdoor compost bin yet, so right now we are using the dig and drop method behind the shed. Between recycling and composting, using real dishes instead of disposables, and cloth napkins and rags instead of paper towels, it is amazing how long it takes to fill up our kitchen trash now. I think we only had one bag go out last week.
Last Monday, my sister and I started The Master Cleanse. The Master Cleanse is a 10-day detox juice fast. We finished up yesterday and are now on the ease out phase. We plan to begin a raw/vegan diet on Saturday after we complete the ease out (which is freshly squeezed OJ all day today and raw/green smoothies and juices tomorrow). I am so excited because I have been wanting to try a raw/vegan diet for a while and I couldn't attempt it without my sister. She has been a vegetarian for several years and has also been raw/vegan off and on. My reasons for doing this also deserve a blog post all their own, so I will be sure to share all of this with you very soon.
After I finish the ease out phase, I plan to start running again. I have also started doing yoga everyday. I am alternating between the Yogalosophy DVD (Jennifer Aniston's trainer), and Yoga X (from P90X), and workouts from an iPhone yoga app called All-in Yoga, which we do out on the sun porch while listening to the Yoga Station on Pandora Radio.
I have also started hooping. What is hooping, you may ask? The best way I can describe it is dancing with a hula hoop. It is a great workout and lots of fun. I first discovered it from Sara at Walk Slowly, Live Wildly who also has a blog called The Happy Hoop. I have been wanting to try it for a long time now, and when I watched this video that Sara posted, I was so inspired to start now. With hooping, you do not use a regular hula hoop, because they are too light. You can purchase ready made hoops, or you can make your own, like we did, using these simple instructions with supplies that I found at Lowe's.
We have been hooping for three days now and have already learned a few tricks using these tutorials. It is so much fun!
Saturday we pack up and head to Virginia for a week for our annual youth summer mission trip to work with Hope Charitable Services. Where we are working is only about 45 minutes from VA Beach, so we head over that way anytime we have a break, so it is also kind of feels like vacation. (Except for the 45 minute drive from the beach back to the hotel in a musty church van filled with wet, sandy teenagers.)
So that's a quick update of some of the things we've been up to. I'll try to get back here on a more regular basis when things calm down a bit. Hope you are having a great summer!