We are wrapping up the first leg of our summer travels today. Our time so far has been filled with rest, family, mowing lawns, driving, and even a bit of music!

For those of you who don't now, my father decided to retired from teaching at the end of last summer. From the brief time we spent with him, I would say he is the worst (or best?) retired person ever.

He is Fairfield High School assistant tennis coach. He also drives the school bus to their matches. He volunteers at a grieving group for people who have lost loved ones. He is remodeling his house. And he has a lawn-mowing business.

To try to squeeze some extra time in with him, we helped him with his yards. This may be one of the first times Alisha has mowed a lawn since "The Incident" with her brother and the mower (you'll have to as her about that one), but she did great! It was also fun getting our hands dirty and smelling like fresh cut grass for a few days, too.

We also got to have a dinner with some Amish friends of ours, which was a real treat. They made home-made pizza and we filled the night with wonderful conversations about our work in Lithuania, life on the farm, and stories from when Josh and his brother, Jordan, grew up with Amish babysitters and all the silliness that came out of that.

We also had a chance to see Jordan before he graduates from college and have some Mexican food with him and some of his friends. It's great to see him growing up into a young adult. You may even say he's becoming kind of cool, but don't tell him we wrote that.

The bulk of our time, however, has been spent in Anderson, Indiana, where Alisha grew up. We have been having a lot of family time with Alisha's family, which has been good. Every day we've been able to eat with them and slowly unfold all of the stories and experiences we've had this past year.

Yesterday we went to the Indianapolis Zoo where it rained cats and dogs. But that couldn't stop us -- we all kicked off our shoes, but on the rain ponchos Alisha's dad packed, and joined the animals in soggy solidarity. It was fun!

We also played a mini concert at Barley Island for Alisha's father who has always been Alisha's biggest fan and was very excited to have a chance to finally hear her live. We ended up winning over the locals, which was a happy surprise, and we got to hear Toni Marshall play, which was very awesome.

In less than an hour, we will be on a plane to Arizona to reconnect with friends and loved ones. Needless to say, we are pumped!