Thursday, February 13, 2014

a ferry ride from the big city...

on the ferry from Hong Kong to Cheung Chau, "our" little island
Our time in Hong Kong was covered with the kind of grace that brings tears of grateful awe and sweetest, simple joy.  I got to spend several mornings in the Word, relaxed on a faded plastic lounge chair just perfectly shaded, listening to birds, enjoying the fresh breeze, hearing my kids laughing happy at play nearby.  We were in a clean place, a bit crowded overall but totally peaceful at the top of the hill where we slept.  It was truly, super beautiful, surrounded by soil and living green and brilliant, clear blue, even the scent of life in that clear air.  Our kids had swings and toys to play with right outside our door and most days at the retreat where we stayed, there were other families with kiddos to play with too.  We walked by thousands of people who smiled kindly at us and didn’t stop us to ask if all four kids were ours and didn’t gasp and laugh that we could speak their language with them.  

It was refreshingly restful and joyful even though most days we had at least one kiddo injured or ill..... but we had time for cuddles and long read alouds and lots of time for hearts all growing together.  I think my favorite thing in the world is to be with this family of mine (oh the grace of this!) for long talks, appreciating each other’s hearts, listening long to each other’s words, enjoying their eyes, looking to find and enjoy the exquisite beauty inside each of them.    

There was the evening that we ate dessert alone at the table (usually we ate dinner with other families at the retreat) and Daddy read the last chapters of Andrew Peterson’s third novel (in the Wingfeather saga) and we all burst into tears... yes, even Daddy had the real stuff running down his cheeks.  What a story!  What a precious, precious time together.  The whole of it was our sweetest family vacation yet.   

We stayed in a very cool retreat located on Cheung Chau island, about a half hour ferry ride from Hong Kong island.   Home to 30,000 people and A. Lot. more that come to vacation there.  The neatest thing is that there are no cars allowed on the island (except for ambulance and police).  It took me several days to feel like I was in a “real” place and not a museum or an amusement park.  No cars!  No roads!  (They make do with push-carts and trolleys like in the pic below).  A thin little sidewalk was as wide as most the “road” ever got on the island.  It made for such a quaint, endearing charm and our retreat at the top of the hill was well worth the sweat of getting luggage and kiddos up the slope for the beauty and calm awayness of that blessed place.    We are so grateful to the Lord for this vacation.  and for the perfect excuse that made us go:  needing to renew passports.  (And with the orderliness of Hong Kong, that part got done glitchlessly too.)

Don't tell the baboons, but I'm pretty sure the highlight of our time at the Botanical and Zoological Gardens, (beautiful and FREE!  We love Hong Kong!) besides visiting with cool friends from our Asian home city, was this kid with his bubbles in the park area.  

So we indulged and bought a bit of bubble joy of our own

on the way to the pirates' cave.
Yep… it was the real deal (about a century before they walked into it).  Sorry no pics of the cavern...

(somebody's else's, of course)

I love this man. 
"downtown" on the island 
(proof:   I was there too!)  This was the "road" to our retreat place.   

PS ~ Our little blog has been nearly abandoned so far this year but I'm hoping to get a bit of time to post in the next week or two.  Must scratch the writing itch….you know what I mean?  And too, there will be too many more photos of the kiddos.  I've been working on the next installment for their blog-o growth charts.  How fun to share the record of the Father's grace at work in them, with you!  

1 comment:

  1. well that settles it. we absolutely must do a K-meets-K family vacation there. so glad it was a blessed time for you all.