3.07.2014

{Of Florida and Traveling}

We make so many great memories as we travel that folks think our trips are one big vacation.:)  Well, I wouldn't exactly call it that!  Yes, we are abundantly blessed with the most amazing friends all over that we get to visit.  It's true; we do get to see some fantastic sights and places.  But there are other things in our traveling life that don't get written about on the blog much, and rarely are they photographed. 

There are the nights when we go to bed at different times, and due to some slightly loud, night owl family members and the phenomena of all sleeping within a 20x9 foot area, other family members get woken up in the midst of their beauty sleep.:)  

Though we rarely get sick, there are times when one or more of us gets a cold or the flu or something.  Just this morning, a family member came down with the stomach flue, and you can imagine the sounds and smells of that within a 45 foot bus.;)  It's a time to light some candles, spray a little air freshener, give the sick person as much room as possible, and put a smile on your face.:)

Then there is the morning (also today:) when you are out of paper cups, so you drink smoothie in shifts, taking turns with the four mugs you have.  

One day, the toilet flush breaks completely.  Well, thankfully you can reach deep into a cupboard and flush the toilet an alternate way (sounds complicated, I know:).  

Someone in the family recently lightly sprained their ankle.  Climbing into the top bunk in a stack of three bunks with no ladder and an injured ankle can be interesting! 

All that said, we do love this crazy life and I wouldn't have it any other way.  I don't even wish for traveling to be all smooth sailing, because the above things are part of what God wants to teach us right now.  And there's no place like right where God wants you to be, learning just what He wants to teach you!

We had a lovely time with our sweet friend, Betty.  She took us to "The Sweet Tomato" for dinner and the food and conversation were fabulous!
We had some wonderful times of fellowship with Florida friends, many who we didn't get pictures with!  I just want to say thank you so much!  We are humbled by all the hospitality, delicious food, encouragement, etc that so many friends across the miles bless us with.  We are so grateful for your love and support.  
  We always enjoy the chance to host friends in the bus! 
We did some jammin' before it was time to say goodbye.
We loved visiting Miaki State Park!  One of the fun things the park offered was a wooden structure with steps that you could climb-about 70 feet.
Almost 25 years of marriage and more in love than ever!
Someone had the idea that all us siblings should climb this big old tree.  
Let's just say some of us are more the climbing type than others and it was quite the production getting all 10 Bontrager kids up and securely perched on the tree.:)

And then everyone had to be safely lowered from the tree!  Some of use opted to be swung down where we were caught by Dad or one of the "big boys".
Carson, of course had to find a more adventurous (=dangerous) way to get down.  So he climbed way out on a higher branch of the tree we were in and swung to another tree, whence he slid down (about 25 ft) to the ground.:)
Mitchell and Rebecca
Rebecca
Our time at the park involved lots of walking- maybe 4 miles- so Rebecca was happy for strong big brothers to piggy-back her most of the way.
And Carson's the one who will climb out on a tree limb that most people would have a hard enough time balancing on- only he does it with Rebecca on his back.
Loved the hanging bridge!
amazing view!!!
Our annual breakfast with Uncle Amos and Aunt Hannah was delicious and completely fun, as usual!
Rebecca and I- don't you love her very original wicki-stick glasses?  Rebs keeps us all smiling!
Mother & Aunt Hannah
walking at the park
alligators!!!
...................................
And now, some concert photos:
(Below) An outdoor concert in Pinecraft.
(below) concert photos at a church.
the instruments

7 comments:

  1. this makes me miss you more! So glad you will be back next weekend!(= Love the tree pictures! Lizzie

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  2. Wonderful photos! Thanks for sharing them! :)

    Blessings!
    Cryslyn

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  3. Hey Bontragers,
    Oh no not the stomach flu :(. I'll b praying for the kid who has it. Sprained ankles r not fun either. I'll b praying for that one to. Great concert pics. If we had the time id love to come see u all in concert!
    In Christ,
    Lexi

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  4. I loved seeing these pictures! Looks like y'all had a lot of fun!! :) Thanks for sharing!
    ~Tashia

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  5. Oh wow! Carson sounds just like Jared. Always finding an alternative, crazy way to do things. Only problem with that is, I usually get pulled into it right along with him. I can also completely relate to the cold/flu thing. It does show great unity in a family, because when one of us gets it, of course we've got to share it with everybody else. :) sounds like y'all have had quite the adventure this past month. We had quite the experience today as well. While at the San Diego Zoo someone broke into our van and took pretty much anything of value. You can read all about that on our blog if you're interested. Anyway, continuing to pray for blessings and safety on your family. Love y'all! God bless.
    ~AbbyJoyAllen :)

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  6. Love Mitchell and Reba's pic! adorable!!

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  7. Wonderful photos. As an only child, it is such a blessing to see siblings with such loving relationships. Thank you so much for sharing!

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