This summer was a summer of travel for us. Jessica and I were in Kenya in June for 10 days for a mission trip. We brought a group of 9 from our church ranging in age from 14 to 82. Then in July, the two of us went and led a conference in Calcutta, India for 150 current and future pastors from Bangladesh and India. We were the conference for that time. We also go to go south in India and do some evangelism. That trip was a week long trip with travel. We are thankful for those who contributed to our missions and to fund the conference for these pastors. We were able to do it all and expand the conference. Other than our own donation of about $500, it was all covered.
Then, after our mission trip we took a vacation together. We have never been on vacation without the children in the over 13 years since our first child, our son Micah was born. We have had two one night hotel stays in that time without kids, but it wasn’t really a vacation. They have gone to camp over the past several years, but we never really got to go on vacation those weeks either. It was quite exciting as we tackled a bucket list item and spent some time in Australia and New Zealand. As a bonus, we had a day in Hong Kong to explore on a long layover. Our 13 day vacation was incredible, one we will never forget. In doing this vacation we were celebrating our 15 anniversary from June, Marcus’ 40th birthday from May and Jessica’s 40th birthday coming up in April of 2019. We were also making up for more than a decade of doing very little for Mothers Day and Fathers Day as well as birthdays and anniversaries for the two of us. Over the years, we have done as little as a card with the most being a small gift card and a dinner out. It was overdue and well deserved and quite the adventure. We are blessed and thankful and were able to do it pretty affordably due to various connections, discounts and the fact that we were already halfway around the world. All together we were gone 30 days in June and July and covered 5 continents. What a summer!
As for the kids, they got to go to church summer camp as usual, got time with grandma Carlson and Nana and Pop-Pop Rudl at home in Indiana as well as in New York and at the lake. They got to hang out in NY with Aunt Sarah and Uncle Zech and were spoiled in the process. We are all glad to be home and the dogs are certainly glad as well. The school year routine begins on August 1 for Jessica and August 2 for the kids!