Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Garrick's Birthday Bonfire!

On Monday, my handsome husband turned 26! He said he feels old. I'm afraid to say I felt similarly on my birthday. I'm sure we'll look back and laugh at ourselves in a few years.

After returning from the Borders on Sunday evening, I cooked a big American breakfast for Garrick's birthday dinner: pancakes, eggs, hash browns, fried mushroom and tomatoes, and of course bacon. Then, we sat down to finish our "Harry Potter" movie marathon we started the previous weekend.

During my lunch break on Monday, I delivered balloons and fudge donuts to the Roundel for the birthday boy and his office mates. Then we went to lunch at his favourite soup place, Café in the Square.

Monday night, we invited several of our friends over for coconut carrot cake and drinks before heading down to the Castle Sands for a bonfire. The boys played football, the kids searched for beach treasures, and fun was had by all. Many thanks to Spencer Bentley for the below photos:

Happy birthday, Garrick! I'm beyond grateful I get to live life with you. Without you, I'd laugh a lot less. And be lonely. Your hard work and kindness to me does not go unnoticed. You are loved! xo

Monday, April 28, 2014

Retreat in the Borders

This weekend, I joined 20 women from our church, Cornerstone, on a retreat at Kippilaw House in the Scottish Borders. We left in the evening on Friday and arrived in time for a brief session and small groups, followed by supper and socializing. I roomed with my lovely friend Liana in the White Room. It was very spacious and of course, white.

The retreat structure included sessions led by guest speaker, Dot, small groups, and free time. Saturday afternoon, I walked around the estate, painted my nails, napped, read "Harry Potter", and enjoyed conversation with friends. Meals were delicious and prepared by Becky and Abby, pictured below in their stylish aprons. I formed deeper relationships with many women from our church, and I'm thankful I had this time to rest and reflect. I hope to go back again to explore more of the Borders, including Melrose. Take a look!


Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Sunday

Easter weekend began with the stomach flu in the Allen abode. Because of this, we didn't feel our best for Easter Sunday, but still participated in the day the best we could. And it was a wonderful day!
Every year, there is a 7am sunrise service at St Mary on the Rock overlooking the North Sea, just a few steps from our flat. All churches in St Andrews gather together to celebrate the resurrection. Hymns are sung, a sermon is preached, and communion is served. Truly, this service is something we will miss when we leave.

After resting a bit at home, we attended All Saints Church at 10:30 to watch John and Sam Brewer's baptism. It was special to be present for this significant day in their lives. I felt a bit awkward making my way through the liturgy, but enjoyed experiencing the Easter Eucharist. 

After eating nothing but crackers and juice all weekend, it was decided that Taste lattes and croissants were in order. The day was sunny and still and the temperature was perfect! We sat on a bench overlooking the sea and our view looked like this:

Easter dinner was hosted by Jesse and Liana. I say this at every holiday, but friends become family when you live away from home. And we are grateful for our family in St Andrews. Dinner included lamb with tahini sauce, mint peas, roasted potatoes, salad, Paska donuts, and a cake for Raymond's birthday!


Happy Easter Week!
And we are raised with Him,
Death is dead, love has won, Christ has conquered;
And we shall reign with Him,
For He lives: Christ is risen from the dead!