Fall Creek Falls and Beyond Gratitude

It’s one of my favorite weeks of the year: summer trip to Fall Creek Falls, joined by the Dukes, Napiers, Dunlaps, Browers, and Haverkamps. We hike, bike, eat, sing, laugh, wash dishes and hang out with each other around the fire or under the tarps in the rain. The more adventuresome hike the Gorge. For me, the trip was cut short as my sister and I left Saturday for our Ethiopian adventure to bring her adopted son home. We spent the day in Washington DC, then flew out to Ethiopia, a 14 hour flight over 8 time zones. Here’s my gratitude list for a week brimming with good things:


  • Finding out I’m leaving Saturday for Ethiopia and packing for two trips at once!
  • IMG_0131Setting up camp and before the pouring rain started:)

    The Not-So-Easy-Up

    The Not-So-Easy-Up

  • smores around the campfire


  • Daniel making it to camp and hiking despite the broken armIMG_0238
  • Fun hiking with the girls!IMG_0237
  • Cascades after a rainIMG_0219


  • The FallsIMG_0153
  • Doodlebug’s first hike down the GorgeIMG_0221
  • dinner by torchlightIMG_0242IMG_0243


  • Packing up before the rain started 🙂
  • Doodlebug’s butterfly findIMG_0244
  • knowing I was leaving my oldest two in good hands at Fall Creek Falls while I went home to start my packing for my next adventure–thanks Missy, Donna, Stacy and Anne Elise!


  • a crazy day of last-minute packing two suitcases FULL of donated diapers to take to the orphanage. Look at all these diapers!IMG_0118
  • spending some alone time with my youngest two
  • celebrating my dad’s birthday


  • flying up to DC for a half day of sight-seeing with my sister
  • a walk down the Mall to see the price of freedomIMG_0259 IMG_0260
  • IMG_0266culmination of the walk at the Lincoln MemorialIMG_0269


  • meeting two other families on the plane to Addis Ababa who were adopting and forging relationships
  • a little bit of sleep on the plane
  • protein bars and fruit juice, as well as a gluten-free meal in-flight

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Filed under Gratitude, Joy Dare

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