Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Happiness is ...

... my first In-N-Out burger in 13 months!!!


Yes, we are finally back in wonderful California.

We are fortunate enough to get to spend a week in Los Angeles to visit with family/friends there, then spend a week at a family camp near Santa Cruz and a final week with my parents before heading back to Spokane and onto the great unknown...

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Hangin' with Jeremy & Krista

Those of you who attended our wedding will mostly likely remember this very striking couple - Jeremy & Krista Sandin. Jeremy & Jason grew up knowing one another and we were blessed to be able to spend some time with them last weekend at a cabin owned by Krista's family which lies between Spokane & Seattle (where they live).

Saturday morning, we decided to go for an "easy-to-moderate" hike (as defined by Jeremy!). What I soon learned was that hiking Sandin-style meant driving this 4-wheel drive vehicle until it was no longer feasible, then heading out in the general direction of where a waterfall was known to be. There was no trail or path at all!

The reward for our efforts was this fantastic, untouched waterfall!!! So beautiful! Can you find Jason in the picture on the left?
Before leaving on Sunday, we took a quick walk up to the top of the dam just minutes from our cabin.

Krista & Jada walking the dam wall while Jason goes for a quick dip in the resevoir.

Views from the top of the dam.

One last photo at the Preszler cabin before leaving on Sunday ....

Monday, July 21, 2008


We have made our decision ....

We will be traveling to Palau at the end of August and will live on the small island of Angaur for 10 1/2 months. We are quite excited about the prospect of returning to the South Pacific for what may be a Peace Corps type experience without the bureaucratic headache. Woo-hoo, tropics here we come!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

85.5 pounds

One of the Schlafmann family traditions is picking cherries ... since we happened to be here during cherry season this year, we got to join in on the fun! We got up early on Friday morning and headed to their favorite spot to pick. The trees were SO loaded ... we picked for only 1 - 2 hours and had 85.5 POUNDS of cherries!! Yummy!

Jason & his Dad, Jarvis, bring back one final bucket of cherries while his Mom, Marilyn guards our stash!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Offers across the globe

So, we have officially recieved job offers in locations pretty much across the globe from one another.

On Tuesday, we received a job offer from the American School in Marrakesh, Morocco. Jason for a 2nd grade teaching position and me for a high school art part-time teaching position. The school provides furnished housing, some relocation allowance and is extremely excited about the prospect of having us on staff. Here's a link to their website:

Morocco -

We did interview for the caretaking job in Palau (we were 1 of 100+ applicants & excited just to get an interview!) the week before last, but had not heard a decision back from them to date and in our minds had sort of checked it off ... but after receiving an offer from Morocco, we connected back to see if we could get a status before making our decision .... and .... we got offered the job there as well. Here's the link to their website:

Palau -

We're completely overwhelmingly grateful to have two such unique opportunities for the next year of our "adventure," but at the same time we're having a really difficult time deciding which one will be the best option for us. I spent the morning making a pros/cons list for both and really they are incomparable. Please be praying for us as we make this decision within the next day or so.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Turtle Days

Jason's Dad grew up on a farm in Turtle Lake, North Dakota - every year the small town holds a Turtle Days festival which serves as a time for the family and many family friends from the area to get together. We drove to North Dakota in one day - it took us 16 hours on the way out! Here are some photos from our weekend ...


Rusty the Turtle - Turtle Lake, North Dakota's mascot!

This is the Schlafmann family farm ... acres and acres of grain and corn. The small shed looking building on the right is where Jason's dad was born and where the family lived for some years before building the larger house on the right.

The Turtle Days festivities began with a parade down main street - it seemed that the only requirement to be in the parade was that you would throw candy out to the waiting children...made for a lot of "interesting" participants.

Soap-box car races!

The Turtle Races - 192 turtles raced each other - 8 at a time. Bailey's turtle "lassie" took 2nd place in the first round, but was beat out in the quarter finals :(
A Sunday afternoon in the park ....

An evening with Elsie ... unfortunately, her mind wasn't very clear and she didn't always recognize Jason which was pretty heart-breaking, but she had no problem challenging us to a game of cards!