Baby Shower

We had a baby shower at church for our friend Jeanette a few weeks ago! Taelyn and Kate had a great time at the shower!

The gift table

I made a stroller cake for the shower.

The food table

Sweet friends having fun at the shower!! Nong Nut (in the blue and white striped shirt) has THE BEST laugh!! I hope that any time I look at this picture, for the rest of my life, that I will be able to remember that laugh!

Khruu Taay (my amazing language teacher and pastor’s wife) is explaining the rules to the game.

One of the games we played was similar to charades. One person had to act out the word given to them and the other person had to guess it! Pii Dtun (in the blue shirt) was the one doing the acting out below.

I had to act out a gecko and Khruu Taay’s mom was the one guessing! I really love this picture so much!

She guessed correctly!

Nong Nut was acting out in this picture and Pii Pen was guessing! They did so well!!

My favorite language teacher!!!!!

I love sweet Pii Pen!!

We had a wonderful night celebrating Jeanette and Baby Colin!! I love spending time with these precious ladies!!

Thanks for following along on our journey!


Back in the swing of things.

About a week after Scott’s parents made the trek back to America, the two big girls were able to start taking ballet classes. We are so excited to have found a good ballet school for them in Asia!! Both girls are loving their classes so much!!

This is Lillian’s first time taking ballet, so she is super excited! She feels like such a big girl because she has sat through so many years of Taelyn taking ballet and now she actually gets to join in on the fun!

We are still going into the village one night a week to work with our kiddos.  My girls love this and we get excited to see our sweet kids each week!

Tuesdays can get a little long for the two younger girls, so sometimes a little rest time is necessary.

Taelyn started back to school a little over a month ago. A few nights before school started we went on a “back-to-school” date night.

Taelyn LOVED her spaghetti!

I had a calzone and it was amazing!! It’s funny how the longer that we are in Asia, the better foods from “home” taste! Scott will regularly say, “This is the BEST meal you’ve cooked since we’ve been here!” I think it just tastes better to him now because we’ve been eating rice for so long!!

I was trying to get a good “first day of school” picture of Taelyn. Unfortunately, when she went to put her helmet on to ride her bike to school, a gecko jumped out of it and stunned her so this is the picture we got! Classic first day of school picture in Aisa!

I did make her take a good one, though. I can’t seem to get her to keep her fingers down when taking pictures now!! When in Asia…

Hollyn likes chocolate ice cream…

A Lot.

I helped my friend, Khun Aom, make a birthday cake for her daughter! She did an amazing job with the cake! And isn’t her little boy the cutest??!!

Taelyn, Lillian, and I were able to go see Inside Out one Saturday. The last movie that Lillian can remember going to see was at training when we were getting shots. They would show a movie in the auditorium while we were waiting for our name to be called. So on the way to the movie theatre Lillian kept asking if she was going to have to get shots while she was watching this movie.

The loved the movie and I cried from start to finish. It has been very useful for explaining the myriad of emotions that we all go through living overseas. It is such a great movie to help explain how you can have joy and sadness at the same time.

They were doing an art project outside of the movie theatre whenever it was over, so we stopped to take part in the fun!

This is how my girls watch tv at home. We don’t have any sort of cabinet to put our tv up high so since it is eye level, I guess it is just too tempting for them to sit 4 inches from it to watch. The constant struggle in our house these days sounds like, “Girls! Back up from the tv!!” Luckily, one of my best friends is a famous eye doctor and said she will fix them right up when it is needed :) !!

Sorry for the random catch up post!! Thanks for following along on our journey!


I haven’t been blogging lately because I’m taking a class online this semester. Let me rephrase: I’m drowning in a class online this semester. I graduated from grad school in 2004 and so it has been a little minute since I’ve been a student. I’ve also never been a student when I’ve also been a mother. It is hard, y’all. I’m taking Systematic Theology this semester and Scott said that they recommend you not take this course until you’ve had at least 30 hours of seminary behind you. I always was one that liked a good challenge. And I am certainly being stretched and challenged. It is especially challenging to find the time to do all of the reading just between the girl’s nap times and bedtimes. But… we are all pressing on! I have to admit that in one of the discussion questions, when another student quoted, “the great theologian Lecrae,” I felt about 110 years old in that moment.

So, I have to finish blogging Scott’s parents trip to our country! I’ll wrap it up in this one post since they did leave almost 2 months ago now!

Of course while they were here, we took Scott’s parents to feed giraffes!

FrankinAsia did not disappoint during this little trip! He was as funny as ever!

Those tongues really are creepy!!

The first time we came here, Lillian was terrified of those giraffes! Now she is an old pro!

And we had to finish up their trip with a dinner at our “rainforest cafe!”

It was so wonderful being able to share our new country and new culture with Bebe and Papa! We are so grateful for the time that we were able to spend with them this summer!!

Thanks for following along on our journey!


[The complexity or simplicity of my blog titles should clue you in on where my brain is on any given day. You can tell that by the end of this day, I don’t have much left in there.]

There are many factories in our city where they make handicrafts. We hadn’t been to any of these yet, so while Bebe and Papa were here we checked out the umbrella factory and silk factory.

The employees carve all of the umbrella parts by hand.

We stayed and chatted with this sweet lady for a bit! Of course, she loved the “wai-ing” farang baby!

A lot of umbrellas!

At the end of the tour, there were women painting beautiful pictures on the umbrellas!

Taelyn picked out a fan for her cousin and had her name painted on in English and our national language!

Then we headed to the silk factory! Silk is a big deal here and it was neat to see how much work goes into getting the silk threads!

We had the best time with this sweet lady who let Taelyn help with her machine!

Very soft and very beautiful silk!!

Lillian and her favorite man!

The next evening, Bebe, Taelyn and I headed out for a big girls night at the night market. This pictures was taken in the songteow!

It just isn’t an evening at the night market unless you’ve had one of these delicious smoothies! We (everyone in the country; foreigner and national) love cold drinks in this country because it is so hot here, and this is one of our (the Tuminellos) very favorites!!

Papa and Lillian stayed at home and had some discussions about Christmas presents.

The next morning it was in the low 90s, so Lillian had to break out her jacket. I’m not sure this child is going to be able to handle the severe cold (of Mississippi) when we no longer live in the tropics!!

Thanks for following along on our journey!!

No one got hurt!!

So Scott’s parents left over a month ago and I’m still trying to finish up blogging their trip!

A few days before they left, we took them to the sticky waterfall. This was the first time that I’ve been back since The Day I Fell Off of a Waterfall. I was a little nervous to go back, and I didn’t do any climbing, but we had a fun day and were excited to show Bebe and Papa some of our interesting nature around here!!

This is as we were heading down the stairs to the bottom of the falls. Papa’s excitement is just bouncing off of him, don’t you think?

I love this picture so much. We really miss #frankinasia. And Bebe in Asia, too.

You know there was no way that we were keeping Bebe from climbing that thing! She was determined to prove to herself that she could do it!

Scott and his mama!! Such a sweet picture!

We convinced Papa that he could climb up just a few feet to get a picture!

I’ll never forget having our family in Asia with us! It was such an amazing time and I am so glad we had the opportunity to show off our country to them!

My munchkin and me! Love this sassy lady!

It was a great day at the sticky falls! Thanks for following along on our journey!

I am the Israelites

In the time that I have been a Christian, I’ve read through Exodus quite a bit. I’ve sung the song asking Pharaoh to let your people go as a kid and I’ve taught my children the same song as an adult. We’ve watched Prince of Egypt many, many times in this house. And I’ve always been quite a bit judgey towards those Israelites. I mean, how ungrateful are they? God delivered them from their slavery to the Egyptians against all circumstances. He fought for them HARD. He sent plagues. He split the Red Sea in half for them, for goodness sake. He leads them by day with a cloud and by night with fire. And He provides for all of their needs.

Yet despite their newfound freedom, albeit in the wilderness, what do they do constantly? They complain. I can’t eat this manna another day. We have nothing here to drink. God has forgotten us here. It would be better for us to still be in slavery than to be wandering around the wilderness aimlessly.

This summer I read through Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy and for the first time when I read about those ungrateful Israelites I saw myself clearly in them. I heard the words that I’ve thought in my head and the ones that I’ve voiced out loud. I saw all of the ways that God has provided for me and I saw all of the ways that I have complained right through all of it. I realized that I am the Israelites.

Numbers 21:5 “…Why have you led us up from Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is no bread or water, and we detest this wretched food. ”

“I cannot eat one more bite of rice today.”

Exodus 17:3 “But the people thirsted there for water, and grumbled against Moses. They said, “Why did you ever bring us out of Egypt to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?”

“It’s so irritating that I can’t just use the water from the faucet to rinse out sippy cups or wash my vegetables.”

Exodus 14:11 “and they said to Moses, ‘Why did you bring us out here to die in the wilderness?… Why did you make us leave Egypt?”

“Why did you bring me here?”

Exodus 17:3 “… Why did you ever bring us out of Egypt?”

“Why did you bring me here?”

Numbers 11:20 “… Why did we ever leave Egypt?”

“Why did you bring me here?”

But last night, as I was reading through Deuteronomy 8 and God reminded the Israelites of all the reasons that He brought them to the wilderness and all of the promises that He had fulfilled for them there, He reminded me of those same things. I’ve asked, “why?” a thousand times on this journey and last night I realized that He has given me plenty of answers to my whys through the Israelites that I have identified with so readily this summer.


“SO THAT you may live and increase…” Deuteronomy 8:1

“SO THAT He might humble you and test you to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep His commands.” Deuteronomy 8:2

“…SO THAT you might learn that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.” Deuteronomy 8:3

“…The Lord your God has been disciplining you just as a man disciplines his son.” Deuteronomy 8:5

“IN ORDER TO humble and test you” Deuteronomy 8:16

“SO THAT in the end He might cause you to prosper.” Deuteronomy 8:16

“IN ORDER TO confirm His convenant He swore to your fathers” Deuteronomy 8:18

Promises Fulfilled Along The Way

“He let you go hungry; then He gave you manna to eat” Deuteronomy 8:3

“Your clothing did not wear out” Deuteronomy 8:4

“Your feet did not swell in these 40 years” Deuteronomy 8:4

“God has been disciplining you” Deuteronomy 8:5

“For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land” Deuteronomy 8:7

“a land where you will eat food without shortage” Deuteronomy 8:9

“where you will lack nothing” Deuteronomy 8:9

God has delivered me from slavery. I was a slave to money, to materialism, to social media (I still struggle with this one. The internet is everywhere, y’all). I was a slave to caring what people thought about me and trying to live up to expectations. God removed me from all of that and has given me freedom, yet I still complain about where I am. I still overlook the promises that He has fulfilled and the ways that He has provided. It took God moving me to Asia to recognize myself in the Israelites. I am the Israelites.

Seeing the gardens

While Bebe and Papa were here, we took them to see the royal gardens one day.

We like an entrance that makes a statement in this country.

We pumped a little water from the ground!

Hollyn helping her big sister with the water pump!

Mama and her girls!

Taelyn and Lillian checking out “Bug World” with their friends!

We don’t have a whole lot of [safe] playgrounds in our city, so we spent a lot of time at this one on this day!!

Playing on the hill in Japan!

And checking out the milk house in Holland!

This girl has some big shoes and some big facial expressions!!

The beauty of Asia.

Bebe and Papa!! I just love this picture and I am so thankful that these two got to come and experience what our life is like in this country!


One of my favorite pastimes in this country is finding signs that are “lost in translation.” My favorite salon is called “Greasy Hair Salon” and my favorite dentist office is called “Just for Fun Dentistry!” But this may be my favorite one yet. When my kids are upset with me I now tell them, “Sorry of the inconverience.”

It was a fun day! Thanks for following along on our journey!

Showing off the Waterfalls

Since they weren’t able to be here for Taelyn’s baptism, we wanted to at least take Bebe and Papa to the location of Taelyn’s baptism while they were here! We had a fun afternoon enjoying the waterfall!

Lillian is now a product of the tropics. It was only about 94F on this day so she was, “freezing.”

She was not happy about being cold… AT ALL.

[This should probably go on another post, but I’m afraid I will forget it. We went swimming about 2 weeks ago in the late afternoon and it was about 91F outside. Lillian said, “I do not like it being cold here. I can’t wait until it is hot again.” I just rolled my eyes at the absurdity of it all.]

This really is ridiculous, but I didn’t manage to get a family picture of all of us in front of the waterfall at Taelyn’s baptism. So at least this day gave us the opportunity to remedy that.

Starting to smile again…

Taelyn did all sorts of exploring on this day. At one point she also got her Daddy in on the action.

Sharing giggles with Daddy.

FRANK!!! Bless his heart, poor Frank stood on the bank wearing Bebe’s purse the entire time we were playing in the water. And I think he was much happier that way :) !!

“Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of JOY!!” Psalm 47:1

“Hollyn, let the rain hit your tummy.”

It was a fantastic day enjoying the nature that makes up our country. It is hard to look at a waterfall, or trees that seem to touch the sky, without knowing in your heart that a very gracious God created those, simply for the enjoyment of them and to bring glory to who He is. We were so blessed to be able to spend this day with Bebe and Papa!

Thanks for following along on our journey!

Playing with Poo Poo

If you followed #frankinasia at all, you know that, while Frank loved seeing his grandkids (and maybe his son and daughter-in-law, too??), he didn’t particularly love his time in Asia. So we thought it only fitting to take him to the Elephant Poo Poo Park. Seems like the perfect ingredient to any sub-par vacation, right?!

This is Frank’s, “why are we coming to see poop?” pose.

This was our first time to the Poo Poo Paper Park, and I can say that it was very interesting and interactive. They encourage you to touch the poop. Taelyn took full advantage of that to tease Papa.

We all got to take turns stirring the boiling poop.

Then we got to see how grasslike (and stink free) the dried-out poop was.

We got to hold the many different shades of dried poo poo balls.

Then the fun really began! The girls got to choose a colored poo ball and add it to this vat of water. The poo ball loosens up (sorry… the poo jokes are too easy here) and the girls followed their instructions to spread out the poo all over the mesh screen.

Daddy got in on the fun!

Once the whole screen was covered, the girls lifted them out of the water and placed them in the sun to dry.

These are dried poop screens.

The girls then got to peel the poo poo paper from some of the already dried poop screens!

And they placed their poop paper on the large stack of poop paper.

These were the many poop screens drying in the sun! Poop of all shades!!

In the next section, the girls could choose something made out of poop paper and decorate it. Taelyn chose a journal and Lillian chose a bookmark!

Hollyn made a scrap piece of paper because our guide was so nice to include her in every step of the process.

Lillian’s finished masterpiece!

Hollyn makes friends everywhere we go. Her goal is to see how many nationals she can get to hold her!

Then we got to walk around their gift shop and laugh at all of the fun poop jokes.

Papa wanted to make certain that we weren’t going to eat any snacks at the place that makes interesting things out of poop.

Since he wouldn’t let us eat at the Poo Poo Park, we found a little restaurant on the side of the road and stopped in for lunch. This is the type place that our family eats at all of the time, but so far we had refrained while Bebe and Papa were here because we didn’t want them to be nervous about what they were eating.

This is how you really do rotisserie chicken!

Hollyn loves her rice!! She gets super excited when you put a plate (or bag) of rice in front of her. Sometimes she wakes up in the morning saying, “I on’t rice.” She wasn’t born in this country, but she definitely adapted more quickly than the rest of us. I still can’t bring myself to eat rice for breakfast!

It was a fun day playing with poop. If you come visit we will take you to play with poop, too!!!!!

Thanks for following along on our journey!!!

Little Chefs

In typical 7-year-old girl fashion, Taelyn couldn’t wait for the new American Girl movie, Grace stirs up success, to become available on iTunes. After watching it about 23 times she decided that her goal in life was to be on Master Chef Junior. Since we don’t live in the United States, I didn’t even know if this was a real thing or if it was just a fictional competition made up for the sake of the movie. After relentless prompting from Taelyn, I googled “master chef junior” and was pleasantly surprised to see that it was a real competition in America, and that it was surprisingly similar to what was shown in the Grace movie. So we started watching episodes on youtube and it quickly became a favorite show for the whole family (Bebe and Papa included!!).

Which, in turn, prompted a desire to do some cooking in my kitchen! Taelyn diligently looked up recipes that included ingredients that we currently had (and wouldn’t take an extra trip to the grocery store!!) and decided on a Raspberry cookie bar. Then the girls spent a morning getting messy!!

We got out all of our ingredients and each girl took turns dumping exactly half of that ingredient into the mixing bowl. Because I’m nothing if not fair. Then each girl got to hold the mixer for approximately 45 seconds until it was the next sister’s turn and we alternated like that until the ingredients were thoroughly mixed.

Once it was time to incorporate the dry ingredients, we took turns mixing with the spoon.

But you know for any good shortbread crust, it takes getting your hands in there and getting messy to get the texture just right! They were thrilled when I said, “use your hands!!”

What’s more fun than making a mess in the kitchen??!!

We got our crust all pressed down into our pan!

The girls were so excited to get their dessert into the oven!!

The finished product!!!

Taelyn said that she is sure to win Master Chef Junior with this recipe!!

Thanks for following along on our journey!!