Monday, January 05, 2015

Adventures in our urban jungle

Our Christmas break is over now, but we had such a great time relaxing, spending time with friends, and playing with new Christmas presents, of course.  The boys had a wonderful after Christmas surprise when a package from Colorado arrived on New Year's Eve.  My (Julie's) sister and brother-in-law sent them some wonderful Colorado-y gifts (coonskin hats, a gold panning kit, and canteens) and their arrival made our New Year's Day extra special. 
 Okinawa has many different rural and urban parts, but where we live is pretty urban.  Brian and I both grew up with large yards and easy access to woods, hiking, and exploring, so we miss that sometimes, but we're very thankful for the exact place God has put us.  Also, Japan is wonderful about insisting on 'green' spaces in their cities, so we spend a lot of time at amazing parks very close to our house.
But we needed to celebrate the arrival of these awesome gifts with something memorable, so here are a few pics of our New Year's Day adventures...

Of course, the boys donned their coonskin hats as soon as they woke up. :)
 Then they spent the morning on the back porch 'panning for gold'...

And then we went on a family 'hike'... this is actually just a walk up the hill from our house, along the fence line of a nearby military base, and then down through a park... but the boys had never gone to the park this way before, so it was a new adventure! :)
Of course they also had to bring their binoculars... another cool gift from Aunt Jessie. :)
 We're thankful they keep a few feet outside of the fence cleared of jungle brush... makes it the perfect hiking trail!
 Please notice the boys poses in the next few pictures... Noah was doing his 'tough explorer on a hike' look and Justin became obsessed with the softness of the tail on the coonskin hat. :)

When we ended up at the park the boys know, Justin proclaimed it was a miracle! :)

Definitely, lots of fun times had by all... thanks for the awesome gifts Aunt Jessie and Uncle Andy!!!

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