Congratulations, Caley and Ryan!

My cousin Caley married Ryan Cooper on Saturday! I have been enjoying watching all of the wedding pictures pop up on Facebook :)

Congratulations to my sweet cousin and her new husband! I thought about you all that day. It hurt my heart to be so far away. I love you both!


Back to Paris again!

We weren't home long before we were hitting the train tracks again! First, it was to Lille to see Matt Freeman, from Austin Ridge. He was stopping off there on another trip and arranged to see us. It was so good to see him and to visit Lille, a cute town in northern France.

I am addicted to Grand Places :) They are one of the best things about Europe, in my opinion.

After Lille, it was on to visit some friends who live just south of Paris. We stayed with their family a few days and got some shots for a video project. The best part was playing with their sweet kids. Their daughter is the most well-balanced little girl I have ever seen. She's a fairy princess through and through, but she also has beloved snail pets that crawl all over her :) She is amazing.

We had a lot of fun traipsing around.

How would you like to be a little kid whose park playground backs up to a beautiful old convent? The history here still blows me away. It just blends in so well with modernity that it is shocking sometimes.

Clay doing his thing.

Ok, so we had dinner with some friends of our friends (confusing, I know) and they, like so many lucky people here this time of year, have ripe cherries on their trees!! This is another thing that blows me away.

For dinner, everyone just got to work, peeling and cutting potatoes for frits, chopping veggies for salads, pitching in from beginning to end. It was a beautiful thing. So "French," you know? I really liked it. Whenever we talk about "community," this is the picture I will always have in my mind.

So, goodbye to France for a little while, yes? We are back in Huy to begin our summer. It is starting to get a little warm here- we keep putting off buying a fan for our bedroom, but it just may happen tomorrow. Texans, you are shaking your heads, I know. Since when does one whine about 70 degree evenings? When you don't have air conditioning, I guess ;) It's not too bad, I confess.

Happy Monday!


Update from Megan's Kitchen

I have to share this recipe for a gluten-free wrap!! None of my attempts at gluten free baking have really panned out UNTIL today!!

This recipe for millet buckwheat wraps is so great. No yeast and it can be sugar free (I substituted the honey with water and a little stevia)! For those of you who are gluten free, I recommend this highly. I find most of my recipes on that blog. She is great.

The other winner so far (made by Daisy, so I can't claim that it worked out in my kitchen) is a chocolate cake made from.... black beans! Can you imagine?? Well, let me tell you, it was awesome. If you are adventurous and health conscious, give it a try.

It is so good to be able to eat something bread-like again and feel good about it. Thank you, God!!


There and back again.

Mom and Rob left yesterday after a wonderful trip. I am so thankful that they could come! We had a blast!

We finally got to the top of our fort. It was so cool to see the city from so high.

We love Huy.

We also made it to see a real castle, something that was high on Rob's list of things to do :) Daisy recommended Bouillon, and it did not disappoint.

It was seriously one of the most beautiful settings I have seen here. Gorgeous.

Such travelers, aren't we? :)

Friday was Mom's birthday, and Dad, Q, and Gma through her a party over ichat. I have a feeling they enjoyed the cake more than we did. It was so cute.

Off again! This time to Paris!

This is the view from the apartment we found to stay at. SO awesome.

Here is Rob trying out his fold-up bed. We laughed so hard! He ended up laying the (1 1/2-inch thick) mattress on the floor. After traveling with Rob I can say that he is easily one of the most easy-going and good-natured people I know.

Our first view of the Eiffel Tower. We were kind of in awe. You hear about something your whole life and then there it is.

We did a bike tour that night to get an overview of Paris. Ok, I am really bad on a bike. Like really. A&M is probably still littered with debris from my many falls. You can imagine my trepidation upon agreeing to this bike tour.

This is one of my favorite pictures from the trip. The birthdaygirl herself, biking past the Eiffel Tower in a glowing vest. Oh how we laughed!

Aren't they the sweetest?

Mother and daughter outside the Louvre with Rob whizzing past.

The bikers relaxing on the river cruise after the tour.

Doesn't get much better than this.

Oh, wait... yes it does :)

In front of the Sacre Couer. We could see the top of this church out of our bedroom window.

Mama trying a crepe filled with Nutella. Crepes are basically the compilation of all food dreams. You love something? Put it in a crepe and rock your world.

There she is.

Where's Megan? Oh, she's on the OTHER side of the track where she was left after the doors shut on her trying to get on the train.

The doors shut on my arms and I actually had the thought that I was about to get dragged through the Paris underground flying alongside my family's train. Luckily I was able to extract myself before my feet left the ground. Oh, can you even iMAgine?

One of Clay's favorite places in Paris, Notre Dame. The central carvings are some of the most beautiful illustrations of Christianity we have seen. I am so thankful to have Jesus!

Some Eiffel loungers.

And Rob had to see the Arc de Triomphe. I think it met up to his expectations.

We did some walking around town...

...and then settled in for what really counts when you're in Paris- finding out if MacGyver will be able to outsmart his predicatment THIS time. (So far, so good :)

And then, as quickly and beautifully as they appeared, the mother and son duo from Texas turned in their Europe shoes and returned from wenst they came.

We love you two dearly! Come again any time.


Lunch with Ali and Nada

Ever since they heard my family was coming, Ali and Nada wanted to have us all over. I cannot tell you how good it is to have such sweet friends here in Belgium! We love this family! God is so good to give us friends!

The boys got cracking right away on the barbeque.

And we ladies watched :)

Ok, Nada actually did a lot of work herself, but the Sandoz/Pasche bunch mainly hung around and enjoyed Ali and Nada's great house and yard.

Last time we were here, I really wanted to explore this old building behind their house, but I was too scared. Big little brother Rob to the rescue!!

Nada and I barked orders from above...

... while Rob checked out the tunnel. So creepy.

Hooray for family and friends getting to know eachother!

Thank you God for this day!!


At a glance

They've tried Belgian beer...

And made themselves quite useful...

It doesn't get much better than this.

(For a more detailed telling of our most recent days, hop on over to Mom's blog. Due to the amount of tech support her blog requires, I am taking a little break :) She is behind me now, playing with my hair as I type this and giving me some serious grief.)

School tomorrow! We have had a busy last couple of days and hope to get good rest tonight!