Certainly by now you are familiar with the faces of our family as they appear in our blog... but have you ever wondered about those other faces who appear on the right hand side? Who are these friends who are "walking with us"?
In addition to being faces who making me smile each time I open our blog, these are family and friends - some I haven't even met personally! - who are interested in our lives and what God has and is doing there.
I'd love to introduce these friends to you!
Before I begin, just a word on each introduction. I previously asked permission to post personal blog addresses of each friend so that you can click on their link and get to know them better if you'd like. Most every one has a blog which they were happy to share. To the few friends just joining us: if you have a personal blog you'd like to share, please let me know and I will gladly include your address in a future post!
One more thing, I've split this post in two parts, so be sure to check back tomorrow. You will want to meet each one!
And now, may I present...
Kathy - Imagine spending your summers on a beautiful island located on the west coast of Canada with no electricity. Erik's cousin Kathy and her husband and two children do! When we were visiting Erik's family in BC two years ago, Kathy's husband Dave all of us over by boat on a beautiful summer's day. We had a blast walking the dirt road, "hearing" the silence, and splashing in the cool waters. My favorite part was our tour guides... Kathy and Dave and their charming kids!
Jasmine - It's been nearly ten years since I've seen Jasmine, but I still remember her amazing smile. She would brighten any room when she smiled.
Mina - my eldest cousin whom I always looked up to, even when I got taller than her. My favorite thing about Mina is her laughter. Read more about Mina and what makes her laugh - and thankful - on her blog "Twenty 11 Reasons".
Liza - I say Liza's name with a sigh. She's the kind of gal that you appreciate instantly... and then she up and moves to balmy CA with her lovely family. When Jack was in the hospital last year, Liza helpfully and carefully organized meals to be sent over from people in our church! Talk about a practical friend!!
Amanda - Amanda is one of those people that I don't know, but wish I did! Amanda, please drop a line - I'd love to get to know you.
Ale' - I knew Ale' when she was Camille's age. She was adorable - a lovely mix of her cheerleadin' mama and kindhearted daddy. I especially adored how her daddy adored her... he would shop and bring home the most precious little dresses for her. Now Ale's a big girl and writing over at friendsfunandjewelry.blogspot.com
Caroline - Caroline gets the prize for how long I've known somebody in this group... I remember when she was safely tucked away inside her mama! Last March, Erik and I bumped into this gentle friend on a Carolina beach when we were having a date (read: Erik and me, plus Jack). Caroline offered to watch Jack for a bit so Erik and I could go on a walk by ourselves and make our date authentic :) Read more about Caroline on her blog agraciousdemeanor.blogspot.com
Amy - When it comes to walking, Amy is no stranger to it. She and her hubby hiked the AT and lived to tell about it! Read more in her blog The Dirt Life.
Mika'l - My first memory of Mikal was watching this tiny 10 year old little doll playing at a church picnic. Over the years, I had the privilege of tutoring/learning algebra/geometry with her. Then she fell in love. Got married. Had kids (including a daughter who could be that 10-year old Mikal if I wasn't looking too hard). Takes time to think about it. Then she chronicles her thoughts in her blog, Beauty for Ashes.
Emily - My earliest memory of Emily is of her as an eight year old, looking up at me with deep brown mischievous eyes and a smile while she stood beside her mom. I still get the privilege of looking into those deep brown mischievous eyes weekly (can you believe my good fortune?!) while she is a student right here at Ravencrest! Find out what's behind those playful eyes and smile in her blog For His Glory.
Jill - I hold Jill partially responsible for my meeting Erik. Nearly ten years ago, Jill and I sat on a quiet grassy, sun-dappled section in a Parisian park. I expressed that I wanted to work in England for a year, but ached over the thought of leaving my beloved South and home behind. Jill said, nonchalantly, "B-town is always going to be there, Sarah." The rest was history. No stranger to traveling the globe, Jill and her family live in Doha. Visit her there at A Bug in the Sandpit.
Kat - Kat and her brother Dimitri grew up together in Toronto with Erik. Their friendship spanned the years and distance, bringing them down the east coast to our wedding in SC over five years ago.
Danielle - (aka Nursing Girls Go Under) I met this lovely Canadian in England. She and I cycled those narrow English roads to Kirby Lonsdale and back, stopping for a lemonade at a little village pub. Danielle expresses her love and care for people as a intensive care nurse in the pediatric unit of her hospital, and just returned from a medical trip to Haiti. See more of her time in Haiti here.
GraceAnna - When I think of my first memories of GraceAnna as four year old, all things sweet and pure come to mind. Dresses. Singing. Laughter. Playing. Fun. Tea parties. (She reminds me a lot of Catherine.) She is still as sweet as ever, and now she's a mama herself, with her and Grant's baby girl due any day. I can't wait to watch this lovely woman with her own little girl. You are welcome to visit their family's blog.
Katie - My mom introduced me to Katie while I was visiting a woman's group at my parent's church in SC. Katie writes at this address.
Christoph and Hillary - Erik and I met Hillary when we lived in Colorado Springs. An amazing stylist with a generous heart, Hillary gave me a perfect present after Catherine was born... a great cut! We were excited for Hillary when we learned that she was going to study for a year at Tauernhof (a sister Torchbearer Bible School in Austria)... Then we were excited that she met a German called Christoph. Our family got to know Christoph when he came to Ravencrest for the second year program. They fell in love, got married, and just celebrated the birth of their precious boy, Elliott! Read more about this couple in their blog!
Melissa - Another sweet friend of my mom's! (My mom has a talent for meeting - and sharing - some lovely friends!) You can read about Melissa in her blog, Fearfully and Wonderfully Made.
Charlotte - I met Charlotte when she had one little boy... and now she's adventuring with seven! How does she do it? She writes about life in her blog Sensible Mom.