West Meets East

Thailand 2013 and Home Again!

When my husband first suggested that we stay in Thailand for an entire month. . . the ENTIRE duration of our free "on arrival visa", I think I might have laughed out loud.  Don't get me wrong, that sounds FABULOUS (yet exhausting) all at the same time.  I enjoy traveling, I love cultures and learning and I knew (from past trips to Thailand) that I would thoroughly enjoy Thailand.  I think I told him that we shouldn't be away from school, routine, and daily life for that long and caught myself saying this to him and wondered what in the world had gotten into me!  He calmly baited the hook with simple words, 30 days that you don't have to cook or clean up, 30 days you don't have to wash, dry or fold laundry, 30 days that you can be in the sun and breath clean. . . clean air.  And that's where he got me.  Hooked!  See, the air quality here in the city I live in was near 800 the day we left. Higher than 300 and they say you should not go outside.  It had been steadily climbing and my throat burned when I would wake up and my voice was hoarse when I went to bed.  My eyes would sting when I went outside and the pollution in the air is one of those triggers to an auto immune disease I've been wrestling with the last 2 years.   This 30 days was to be a gift to get out of the bad air and into the fresh clean air and sunshine of sunny Thailand otherwise known as the land of Smiles and let my body recoup and the kids relax.   We stayed the entire 30 days and although (obviously) it was not all vacation, we had a ministry conference and development meetings for portions of the time (this was our main purpose of going- but my kind husband saved the cash so we could stay longer and get enough time to refresh us before we came back), we did have good vacation time and all of it was refreshing in one way or another.  Here are some of the things we did, sights we saw and things we currently miss now that we are back in our home in Asia and fondly remembering how refreshing it was to step onto the beaches of Thailand and climb aboard tuk tuk's and elephants and drink fruit smoothies for breakfast and lunch and dinner.  It is good to be home though. . . hoping the kids and I still think so when we start school on Monday. ha!

 The Gulf of Thailand in Cha Am

Walking for miles upon miles looking for sea life and sea shells

 Building and Destroying all things in the sand is the love language of this 
(and probably most) 3 year old boys

 Sometimes a girl's just gotta do handstands and cartwheels in the Gulf of Thailand! 

 Our last night at Dolphin Bay in Thailand we joined some friends in setting off these beautiful lighted lanterns. It reminded all of us of The Rapunzel movie and the annual search for the princess on her birthday.  It happened to be  Levi's birthday this day so it was a very special end to his night. 

 Mesmerized by the Sea

 All boy. . . dirt, water, and a lot of noise!

 A quick picture of the girls of the family!

 Our lanterns floating away

 An awesome ride in a song tao

 We spent some time in Chiang Mai, Thailand (northern Thailand) and of course had to visit the elephants! This was  a dream come true for my kids. 

This friendly elephant almost slimed my camera!  I pulled back and he slimed me instead of the camera!  My boys say I should say that correctly, he kissed me instead of the camera. . . but truly it was sliming! 

There are so many stories to tell and thoughts to share and maybe I'll get some time to post some of them in the days that come.  But all in all, I am so glad for the time we had to breath clean air, soak in the sunshine,  to take a break from ministry, to meet with God in fresh ways, to be together as a family and to fellowship with some friends.  I am so blessed!

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