As an extra-large family, sometimes spontenaity works better than investing all the normal energy that planning a "troop movement" takes. Last weekend, we surprised ourselves and made a day trip to Minneapolis, five hours away.
As crazy as it sounds, our reason for traveling 10 hours in one day was...well...a new dog. No, that's not quite it. Our reason for making the last-minute journey was a very special friendship. The Nisius family have loved us through three international adoptions during the past decade. They've supported us in every way imaginable through many ups and downs. They've been loyal and wise and generous. And, most recently, they met our many needs during Anna's wedding week with such grace and selflessness that our family could simply enjoy the special time. We are deeply grateful to the Lord for the Nisius' love.
Therefore, when we learned on Saturday evening that earlier in the day they'd become the owners of a bitsy German Shepherd puppy, we couldn't pass up the opportunity to rejoice with them and meet their new "family member on her second day in their home. This was especially important to us because only a few months ago they'd had to say they're last good-bye to a German Shepherd named, Kendra, who'd truly been part of the family. We woke our kids on Sunday to the surprise we were traveling in an hour.
Katherine was the first to introduce us to seven-week-old Sasha.
I love Sasha's deep concentration on the leaf as she prepared for a pounce.
What did the puppy do after 15 minutes of play in the grass? Sleep, of course!
Sasha's nap freed us to fellowship.
Our very short visit was soon over and good-byes were said.
However, before we left town we stopped at the Russian grocery store we'd found in January. Daria happily collected foods for her cooking from her home land that are unavailable in our town. Meanwhile, the rest of us sought out Russian treats we've come to relish.
Here I'm wearing one of my Russian favorites, Syooshkee (completely unsure of the spelling of this transliteration). They're a bit like bread sticks, although more flavorful and a tad bit sweet. Yum! When I opened the plastic bag when we returned to the car, we were surprised to find them strung together. Mr. Beaver shook lose the celephane and adorned me with my first Syooshkee necklace.
We finished the day grateful to God for a few hours with our dear friends. Not only had we fellowshipped with the Nisius, we'd also strengthened the friendships within our family--lots of laughing and singing together. The goodness of our God is endless. He is a Father who gives good gifts!