Adventure with Engagement AWE · Encouragement · Grief


Let me back up a bit. We took a 180-day trip with our family traveling around the world, on the skinny, putting us together in some uncomfortable situations. The good far outweighed the bad.   I’m blogging about what we did and where we went and how we did it.   But many of you are wondering ‘why we did it.’


When we lost Ryan, in the fire that severely burned my husband, younger son and me, our family broke apart. Burn recovery is lengthy and painful. But the greatest pain came remembering Ryan, in waves of terror interrupting sleep and even fearing a simple car ride. We were thankful when God gave us two more sons, but one child never replaces another. And we had not healed.

We handled our grief differently: Ron internalized and I took out my frustration with physical activities. We had a marriage to hold together, three sons to raise, and none of it was going well. We isolated ourselves and homeschooled our kids, mistakenly thinking we could control the situation better. We couldn’t.

When one son asked: “why can’t we live normal lives?” I asked Ron “What does ‘normal’ look like?”   From that point, we backtracked:




Who had we been before the accident?

How did we live? We chose Adventure with Engagement –AWE.  Ron and I took Ryan and Tyler with us wherever we could, often resulting in discomfort and inconvenience, but we thrived on solving problems together. It’s how we grew as a couple and as a family.

Were we just stupid or naïve? Both. But it worked for us.

What had changed? We lived in fear of losing another child, afraid to take chances or allow our boys to experience risk.  We all needed to go back to those days, and grab a piece of what we had given up. It was time for a grand adventure with our sons – the treasure God had given us that we had been afraid to invest.

China Suzhou?

We prepared. Together. We studied the places we’d visit. Together.  We planned. Together. We discussed how we would do it. Together. We chose the hard way. Together.  And we are still together with wonderful memories!


“A ship is always safe at the shore – but that is NOT what it is built for.”   ― Albert Einstein

Blessed weekend!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s