Monday, November 28, 2011

Busch Gardens Christmas Town, VA


The Mothership Adventures crew is still in Virginia. The Mothership is parked on the curb of my sister's house, and the neighbors are probably wondering when the MotherBeast is moving on. Since Thanksgiving is over and all. Not quite sure yet, but soon-ish, we think.

We had a great (second) Thanksgiving with my sister's family, and for the most part have been laying low (well, as low as you can with a crew of thirteen and being way outnumbered by the kids) and enjoying time visiting each other.

Yesterday, however, we visited had a wonderful outing to Busch Gardens for the first time. We even bumped into some friends from New Hampshire, and my sister saw local friends as well as friends from Maryland in there. (Hi Linda!!!)


The full park wasn't open. The day after Thanksgiving Busch Gardens Christmas Town opens with rides, attractions, shopping and shows. It is only open on the weekends, from 3 pm until 9 or 10 pm, depending on the night. Which worked great for us, we were able to go to church first, come home for lunch, and then head to Williamsburg.

Our half of the crew traveled in the RV and got a great RV parking spot near the England entrance. We even had turkey soup in our crockpot in the RV, but didn't want to leave the park even for an hour to go eat. The soup was a nice midnight snack before bedtime ;-) Dining at the park wasn't cheap, but it wasn't too much either.


We had four adults, one 17-year old, four 12-year olds, two 5-year olds, one 4-year old and a toddler in our crew. And everyone had a fantastic time. We got to the gate right before the park opened and stayed until they closed. My little niece was wrapped to my sister for almost the whole time, but everyone else walked and explored the park without any meltdowns or issues. There was so much to see and do for all ages. For the older kids the Alpengeist-roller coaster was probably the highlight of the park. The little boys enjoyed the train and Jr. Bumper cars.


For the adults the lights and beautiful Christmas music made our time really special (at least for me, I skipped Alpengeist:). I didn't bring our camera since we kept our carry-on to a minimum at the park, so all these pics were snapped with my iPhone - some turned out great, others.. not so much.

We highly recommend stopping and visiting Christmas Town in your travels, and you could even make it a field trip and study the various countries Christmas Town represents. We didn't. We decided to just enjoy ourselves and not call this an official field trip, this time.

One day wasn't quite enough (at least for our size crew) to see everything, but we certainly had a full and fun day. And thank You, Busch Gardens, for keeping Christ in CHRISTmas!

Picnik collage

I am linking this post to Sunday Snapshot and Hip Homeschool Hop.

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Olemme vieläkin siskoni luona Virginiassa, nauttien ajasta yhdessä. Eilen menimme Busch Gardens-huvipuiston Joulukylään koko sakilla. Ihan koko puisto ei ollut auki, mutta ihan tarpeeksi riitti vempaimia ja näkemistä kaiken ikäisille. Ihania jouluvaloja ja lauluja, etenkin pimeällä oli upeaa kävellä ympäriinsä. Suosittelemme!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving 2011!


We wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Mothership Adventures!


This year we have the most turkeys ever. Sixteen, so far. The Captain says they are sugatarian turkeys.


We have so much to be thankful for. Tonight I am grateful for:

- family, both my own, and for the extended family (near and far)
- fun times of playing games, cooking together & hanging out
- yummy Thanksgiving meal
- and that we are cooking it in my sister's kitchen & not the RV:)
- the break in our travels (I so appreciate my sister's washer & dryer!)
- God's plan for each of our lives (both for these next weeks as well as for years to come)
- God's grace

I am linking this post conveniently to Thankful Thursdays at Three Thinking Mothers:)


Torstaina Yhdysvalloissa vietetään Kiitospäivää. Voit lukea juhlasta lisää täällä. Meillä on kalkkunoita enemmän kuin koskaan:) Kuusitoista tähän mennessä! Tänä iltana olen kiitollinen perheestäni ja suvustani (lähellä ja kaukaa), hauskasta yhdessäolossa täällä siskoni luona, kokkaamisesta (siskon keittiössä eikä asuntoautossa, heh) ja hyvästä ruoasta, tauosta reissaamisesta, sekä Jumalan suunnitelmasta elämäämme varten. Ja Jumalan armosta.
Hyvää Kiitospäivää sitä viettäville!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thank You/Kiitos!!!

Thank You so much, my dear readers, for voting for Mothership Adventures on the Homeschool Blog Awards! I was quite surprised, amazed and honored our little blog was nominated.

Tonight the winners were announced, and to my great shock Mothership Adventures won Best Photos Award!! I am so grateful for each one of you who voted us - Thank You!

Check out other winners here.


Suurkiitos teille rakkaille lukijoillenne äänistänne!!! Mothership Adventures-blogi voitti parhaan valokuvablogikategorian kotikoulublogien äänestyksessä. Ihan uskomatonta... Olin niin otettu, että joku oli ehdottanut tätä meidän blogia kisaan mukaan, ja kun tänään voittajat julistettiin, olen nipistellyt käsivarttani - niin vaikea uskoa. Kiitos teille jokaiselle - ilman teitä minulla ei olisi ollut mitään mahiksia!!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Colonial Williamsburg


Happy Thanksgiving from Virginia!


Despite this picture we are really enjoying our time in Virginia. Today we visited Colonial Williamsburg with my sister & her family, and our nephew from Finland.

The Historic Area of Colonial Williamsburg stretches over 301 acres, and includes 88 original 18th-century structures. Hundreds of houses, shops and public outbuildings are reconstructed on their original foundations...

Don't just walk the same streets as Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, and Patrick Henry— walk alongside them. Costumed interpreters undertake years of study to render the founding fathers in first person every day. See them in Revolutionary City's street-theater scenes, or ask your questions during "Conversation With a Founding Father" programs.

Alongside these giants of American history, meet people whose faces you won't find on coins or bills. The everyday people you'll encounter in the Historic Area made contributions as momentous as the founding fathers'. Without money, title, property or power, many remarkable individuals influenced the course of America's experiment in self-governance. Meet these preachers, servants, farmers, and craftsmen and hear their stories.
(Copied from their website.)


It was a full day of walking and learning and having a wonderful time together.


A perfect homeschool field trip - and a very friendly place for homeschoolers. Even though Colonial Williamsburg's website didn't offer pricing for homeschooling families, we got there and only had to pay $7.50 for kids 7-17 (6 & under was free), and adults were  $15 - a huge discount from their regular prices. At gift shops we were given 15% off, also.


One afternoon was not enough to even see our top ten list, so we need to go back sometime soon. There were some hands-on learning spots, and you could interact with tradespeople and ask questions.

Picnik collage

Colonial Williamsburg Visitor Center had great RV parking, too, which made it easy to arrive there in the Mothership. We were able to have sandwiches in the RV before our outing and we had lasagna cooking in the crockpot for later. There were some great looking Taverns to eat at the village, but with our crew of thirteen people we chose to bring our own food.

Such a fun day!

Linking this post to Sunday Snapshot and Hip Homeschool Hop.

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Tänään kiersimme Colonial Williamsburg-kylää siskoni perheen ja Suomesta tulleen siskonpoikamme kanssa. Päivän reissusta tuli kotikoululuokkaretki, etenkin kun saimme selville paikan päällä, että kotikoululaisille on alennusliput. Kävelimme paljon, opimme paljon elämästä 1700-luvulla, nautimme yhdessäolosta, ja päätimme palata takaisin joku päivä - toivottavasti pian!

Hyvää Kiitospäivää Mothership-blogin väeltä!

Monday, November 14, 2011

From Maine to Virginia/Mainestä Virginiaan

The Mothership started the trip with a crash landing on Friday.

By the time we were done with our packing/organizing/cleaning it was late, dark, and snowing. The only thought I had was "we are leaving just in time" as the Mothership is not designed for snow. We were only headed about 2 1/2 hrs South to visit family for a day.

Shortly after we left town, this happened:


Then this:


Then this:


And then we were pulled out. Basically what happened was there was a car that had stopped in front of the Mothership. The Captain tried to stop the RV, but as he applied the breaks on the snowy & icy road, the Mothership decided to slide into a ditch. No one was hurt and no damage was done, so we are very grateful.

We decided to stay put with our "40 foot toboggan" as the guy doing our foundation said as he pulled over to check on us. So we slept on the side of the road in our RV, then continued driving in the morning.


The morning after look.

Since then we had a wonderful day visiting family, enjoyed an early Thanksgiving feast, and drove to New Hampshire. We spent half a day running errands and had quick visits with friends, before driving through Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York and New Jersey into Delaware.

This morning we arrived in Virginia, and as I type this we are almost to my sister's house where will stay for awhile.

So thankful for safe travels, despite our bumpy start.

Linking this post to Sunday Snapshot and Hip Homeschool Moms.

Sunday Snapshot

Hip Homeschool Hop Button


Mothership-asuntoautomme aloitti pitkän matkan etelään liukumalla tieltä ojaan. Oli pimeää, lumista ja liukasta. Hinaajan avulla pääsimme ojasta pois, mutta päätimme jäädä yöksi tien sivuun, ja jatkoimme aamulla matkaa. Vietimme yhden päivän anoppilassa, sitten puoli päivää New Hampshiressä ystävien luona. Sunnuntaina ajoimme New Hampshirestä itärannikkoa pitkin Delawaren osavaltioon saakka, ja tänä aamulla saavuimme Virginiaan. Pian olemme siskoni luona, jee!! 

Dramaattisesta lähdöstä huolimatta matka on mennyt todella hyvin.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Thankful Thursday/Kiitollisuuden torstai


Yes, we do live a life of adventure.

Yes, it is fun to move around so much. To go on adventures and see new places.


Life is never dull with our crew. {Especially with the Captain, the brainstormer of all our schemes.}

I know we are blessed to be able to travel.

In many ways our family has grown closer over the last two years.

And I know my faith in God has stretched and grown in huge ways.

Good times, good times.

But, there is a flip side, too. (Yes, really:) Here is one little snippet into The Not-So-Glamorous-Life-of-Adventure. {And there may be more confessions to come, as we hit the road this week.}

Picnik collage

Yes, these would be pictures of coke cans that had exploded in our RV fridge. Apparently there had been some temperature changes in the fridge as The Mothership has been patiently waiting for our next adventure. (Well, we have had everything from snow to sunny skies in Maine these past weeks!)

Yes, I was the lucky one, who got to scrub a fridge today.

There was a lot of counting my blessings going on:
- So thankful this was coke, not mold or something more disgusting.
- So thankful this happened inside the fridge instead of outside the fridge. I'd rather clean the small fridge than deal with sticky coke on floors, upholstery, walls & ceilings.
- So thankful I discovered it before we left, not on the road..

- Also, I guess I can be thankful I discovered mouse droppings in The Mothership before we left. I have had the joy of washing all kitchen drawers and items in them, plus all the linens in the RV this week. Last year we had to pull over to a laundromat after finding some discoveries on our bed..

And YOU can be thankful I didn't photograph the mouse evidence for the blog!!!

I'd say this post qualifies for Thankful Thursdays on Three Thinking Mothers. I will be quite busy tomorrow as we empty our rental house & take all extra belongings from the RV to our camp. Almost time to leave!

PS. I am still so amazed my little blog was nominated for Best Photos Blog at Homeschool Blog Awards! If you haven't voted yet, go here to vote for Mothership Adventures, of course:) Thank you so much!!


Ei meidän seikkailijoiden elämä ole pelkkää hohtoa ja hienoutta, vaikka onhan se upeaa matkustaa paljon, nähdä ja kokea uusia paikkoja ja elämyksiä. Viimeiset kaksi vuotta ovat olleet rikkaita ja olemme kasvaneet perheenä lähemmäksi toisiamme, ehdottomasti. Myös usko ja luottamus Jumalaan on venynyt ja kasvanut. 

Mutta tänään sain kokea sitä kolikon toista puolta: kokispurkit olivat räjähtäneet asuntoauton jääkaapin sisällä, eli ei kun jynssäämään. Eilen sain myös putsata Mothership'in keittiön laatikoita hiirenkakoista, tänään pesin kaikki astiat ja keittiötarvikkeet. Lakanat ja pyyhkeet myös. Kaikenlaista. 

Voi hyvin olla että näitä kolikon-toinen-puoli-paljastuksia tulee lisää blogiin, lähdemme nimittäin matkaan tällä viikolla!

PS. Vielä ehtii äänestää pientä Mothership Adventures-blogiani kotikouluäänestyksessä! Kiitos:)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

New Adventures/Uudet seikkailut


We are leaving Maine this week. My To-Do list (and the Honey-To-Do list) is long.


We are organizing our belongings (well, not the ones in my in-law's basement, which would be most of our earthly belongings), but the ones we've needed/accumulated this Fall, packing up for our next adventure, and cleaning out our rental house where we've lived for the past two months.


I am cleaning and organizing our Mothership RV, which includes cleaning mouse droppings from kitchen drawers (aren't you glad I didn't take photos of that mess?!?), washing everything in the RV kitchen, cleaning the fridge from an exploded coke can (didn't get to it yet), and bringing in new and clean supplies. We need to find a spot for all this stuff we won't be bringing South with us.


The Captain's family agreed to an early Thanksgiving this weekend, so I am hoping we'll have time to bake some pies too, this week.


But there is one more item on my To-Do list, which I started today: taking 7th grade (and Kindergarten) homeschool photos on the shore of our favorite Maine lake before we leave on our adventures. Here is Mr. T, my first victim subject.


Lähdemme matkaan tällä viikolla. On aika lähteä Mainen osavaltiosta etelää kohti. Tekemisen puutetta ei ole, meidän pitää muuttaa pois vuokrakodista, organisoida asuntoauto, ja pakata tarvittavat kamat mukaan, sekä valmistella aikaista Kiitospäivää varten (ainakin leipoa piirakoita). Sekä yksi tärkeä tehtävä: haluan ottaa 7. luokkalaisten (sekä yhden eskarilaisen) kotikoulukuvat täällä järven rannalla ennen lähtöä. Tänään aloitin Mr. T: kanssa. Ihanaa vaihtelua työn keskelle, tänään jouduin mm. siivoamaan hiirenkakkaa asuntoauton keittiön laatikoista, ugh.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Flabbergasted/Puulla päähän lyöty!!!

I am so shocked! I went to vote for my bloggy friend Our Side of the Mountain at the Homeschool Blog Awards (did that, friend:), and found Mothership Adventures nominated for the Best Photo Blogs!! I don't know how long the Blog Awards have been going on, or who nominated me, but it totally made my day. {Thank you, dear reader, whoever you are!}

Soooo, please head over to Homeschool Blog Awards and vote for Mothership Adventures! You can vote once, and up to five people in your household can vote. Thank you so much!!!

And to leave you with some iPhone photo love, here's the sunset from our lake last night.





Olen ihan puulla päähän lyöty. Joku lukijani ilmeisesti (?) oli nimennyt Mothership Adventures blogin kotikoululaisten Homeschool Blog Awards yhdeksi parhaimmaksi valokuvablogiksi. Minun pieni tuntematon blogini siellä, vau. Löysin vasta tänään kun menin äänestämään blogitutun blogia eri katergoriassa. Kovin ei-suomalaisittain kerjään ääniä, menettehän sinne äänestään, jos ei mistään muusta syystä kuin laitetaan (puoli)suomalainen blogi esille, heh heh. Oikeasti olen niin yllättynyt ja otettu. Rakastan ottaa valokuvia, muttei minulla ole minkäänlaista koulutusta tai tietoa, kunhan omaksi iloksi kuvia nappailen. Tässä vielä linkki missä voi äänestää, ja yhdestä kodista saa äänestää viisi kertaa, jos tietokone vaan sallii ja siis asukkaita on ainakin sen verran :)

Friday, November 4, 2011

Orphan Sunday/Adoption Month

The Lord cares for the orphans and widows. Psalm 146:9

Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows. James 1:27

They are the people of Israel, chosen to be God’s adopted children. Romans 9:4

November is Adoption Month, and this Sunday is Orphan Sunday. Since our family has been touched by adoption, I wanted to promote adoption and orphan awareness, and to share some resources here. God has given us all a command to care for orphans and widows. To love them, as He has loved us. He adopted us into His family! (And if you are not sure if you are God's child, click here to read more.)

The numbers are staggering. At the moment 162 million orphans around the world. 162 million children waiting for their forever families - for someone to love them, for someone to tuck them in at night and kiss them good-night. Waiting for someone to call them their own, waiting to say "Mommy. Daddy."

Would you pray and ask God if He would have you adopt a child? 

I fully believe that is a prayer God delights to answer! He cares for the orphan. He loves us. If He gives you that stirring, that desire to adopt, He is able to move any mountains in the way. Whether it is financial concerns, a spouse or family member who is against the idea, or whatever it is. We serve a mighty God!

Here are some resources to look into when considering adoption:

- Children Who Wait (from No Hands But Ours - go to Children Who Wait)
- Rainbow Kids - a great resource on adoption, also has a photolisting available after you register (free)

If God is not calling you to adopt - or to adopt at this point, you can still help. Pray! Pray for orphans to find homes, pray for adoptive families. You can give - there are great organizations who promote adoption and care for orphans. You can give one time gifts or sponsor children monthly. 

Here's a partial listing to get you started:

- Morning Star Family Home

*Edit: Tonight we watched Answer the Cry: Faces of Hope DVD by Focus on the Family, Hope for Orphans and Show Hope. There was not a dry eye in the room. It was so well done, very moving. You can watch it online by clicking here.

A little more reading, three family blogs (also promoting adoption), and as you click on these links, you'll find many more, so grab a cup of coffee, turn your phone off and enjoy:

You can read our family adoption story here.


Then, an orphan.

Picnik collage

Now, our daughter.

Thank you, God!

PS. Please feel free to leave other questions and/or links in the comments or email them to us. I realize my resources here are just a drop in the bucket. Also, most of my contacts are for China adoption, yet the need is great elsewhere, too.

PS2. Should I add a linky? Anyone else interested in sharing about adoption?

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Three Thinking Mothers started a new feature called Thankful Thursdays on their blog. What a great idea! Of course Mothership Adventures needs to join in, today I am thankful for...

1. The phone call we received five years ago yesterday, telling us we have a little girl in China, waiting for us..
2. And I am so thankful Little Miss is our little girl - can not imagine life without her.
3. Oh, and our big kids, too :)
4. Today we found out a little girl with a serious heart defect we had been praying for has found a forever family - such wonderful news! An orphan less in this world!
5. We had a good school day today.
6. Little Miss made a new friend at the library story hour - huge progress for her!
7. Missy had a great dance class today - so glad we've found some activities for the kids this Fall here in Maine.
8. The weather has been beautiful (snow almost gone), and a lot of progress has been made on our camp.
9. After a very long break the Captain and I attended a Bible study tonight. Such wonderful fellowship!
10. For God's grace.