Thursday, July 31, 2008

We're Home!

We might update this soon anyways to show you what we did on our last 4 days or so - plus the stuff we DIDNT tell you at the time!
But for now we are trying to anti-jetlag ourselves :)

Blessings xX

Thanks for prayers and stuff


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Humming Birds, Rocks and Tings!

After driving late and seeing the storms we awoke to some gorgeous birds fluttering around our doorway. Humming birds! There were at least 3 different colours, grey, green and black and purple. They moved SO fast that photography could easily become a mission and an obsession! 

(click on all photos to enlarge)

Rock Shop - we stumbled across he coolest rock shop full of colours and patterns collected from Utah, Colorado and Montana.

Horse-Deer ! Please someone enlighten me on the name of these creatures.

Old Bryce Town
Time to get a train now so I'm sure Jonathan will chat to you more soon! I prefer the pretty pictures.

Meez xX

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Natural Bridges and other - Js entry

Hi everybody! As you know, we're having an awesome time here in the US. We've made it as far as mid Utah and we have two days left to see more amazingness! Last night we drove well into the night through a lightning storm. It was awesome (using the true sense of the word for once), we pulled over, put the roof down and set our seats for support, then begin a long exposure photo session! We were in pitch black with the low car lights and the sound of bugs all around and a warm breeze. Then POW a fork of lightning would light up and the sky and we would be like 'WOW' and laugh about the amazing powerfullness that we had just captured. We had a great night!!!

the storm builds....

lightning and traffic..

rain and lightning..

we were not alone...


Yesterday day we were at the Natural Bridges National Park, we did a small hike down to one of the bridges and if was worth it. there were three ladders to climb down and plenty of rocks to navigate over. Reminded me of Scotland dad. Up for doing that again this year? I've been stirred to again. 

As for the rest of the trip; well we've seen, met and been to lots of places and I haven't had the thinking and planning time I thought I may want but having typed that, the plan all along was to have a holiday here and that we have. Variety is the defining word for this trip! I look forward to coming home to wolves and partaking in a presentation to the families of our trip. We have so many photos! Thank Jesus for my camera. We won't show you them all but a few more than the blog. It's time to pack up and leave for another day of exploring and experiencing! Love to all the Coates-Smiths and the Turners. Thank you for your comments, its lovely to know you're following this :) 

Love Jonathan

p.s/ Dad - Hey, I sent you an email regarding return to bournemouth/wolverhampton from Maresa's email account. We arrive on Tuesday 29th @ around 9am. The ideal would be for us to get a train to bournemouth, meet you and (maybe?!) Maresa's dad there, sort out the stuff (either leave it where it is, move it storage or take it home and then get a lift up to the midlands with you, whatya reckon?) x x xx x!

Sunday, July 20, 2008


(click on above photo to see fullsize)

Scary windy roads and steep cliffs greeted us at the Canyonlands National park. The views of the Green River are fantastic. There are lots of trails for 4x4 vehicles which look reeally scary. There are also trails left in the canyons from the 1950s when people were looking for Uranium. The tracks are still significantly visibly because 'black crust' (which holds the desert together) can only develop in around two years per century when the conditions are perfect.

Definitely my favourite place so far - less touristy than Arches.
We camped at a primitive campsite near the needles overlook - luckily this one had running water (some don't, you literally get a spot of ground). We pitched our tent in the moonlight and tried to sleep listening to random 'things' snuffling our outside. We're going to find some greener parks tomorrow and find a place to swim.

Beginning to feel happier about going back to Uni in September. I'm looking forward to drawing and sewing again and I'm excited about Victoria's wedding!

Meez xX

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Colorado, Utah and the Arches

Driving through colorado was beautiful. Our car is FANTASTIC, oh just you wait till you scroll down and see it! We drove thill dusk and then roughed it sleeping in the car to save our $. The next morning we ate a giant breakfast and headed towards Arches National Park, Utah. The scenery is like something in Tintin - or history books, you could literally take a million photographs. Jonathan has also introduced me to the 'no auto' rule of photography (partly cuz his auto setting is messed up) which means that we both constantly use manual exposure settings. Certainly gets your brain working - and also impossible to see the results when the sun is so bright. You have to trust yourself that you got it nailed.

Oh and by the way - this blog tends to bland the photos a bit when compressing them so we will hopefully find a way to present the full size colourful versions to you. For our families we are planning a BBQ presentation afternoon - we have video clips as well yano!
Arches was a thrill! Every turn was stunning and we wanted to just keep on stopping! We did a moderate primitive hike (by accident - we didn't realise how far we were going) and drank about 12 bottles of water. I now have an attractive horizon
tal line across my forehead from getting sunburnt whilst wearing a bandana. Oh dear.

We rolled the car roof back and sat on the tops of the seats to watch the sun go down - so beautiful. Then watched he full moon rise - it was huge and orange. Next was a hunt for a bed for the night, we were almost giving up when we found a 'Rustic Inn' which was amazing considering our budget.

Tomorrow is Canyonlands and then on to some greenery and horse riding.

Meez xX

To Denver!

Ok so we're off to the rustic soil of National parks - I'm looking forward to this bit!
The train was delayed by 1.5 hours before we even started but it gave us time to relax and were ready to chill out in the lounge car once we set off.
We're in a double decker again!!

We passed the Mississippi flood plains and saw houses still halfway full of water from when the levy broke. We seemed to travel for miles before we actually reached the bridge. In some way the flood was more impressive than crossing the river.

Eventually we reached Denver after a rough night of on and off sleep - and got a bus to pick up our car :)

Onwards to the parks!

Meez xX


We met Scot at the station - He's a guy that J has been emailing who he 'met' through Andy White. We got some food and drove through Chicago to his place in the suburbs. At the moment Scot and his family (wife Sheryl, three boys Ben, 6, Luke, 5 and Ethan, 2 plus 10 week old aiizling (sorry for baaad spelling there) are living at his parents house along with Scots brother and wife SO its amazing that they put us up!!!! Upon arriving (greeted by the gorgeous cute Ethan) we discovered that they had put us up in an amazing hotel!! (Meez's first experience of proper hotel!)

We talked lots about Scot's Church plant - about building upon the right foundations etc.

Kinda hoping J will write a post on this - hes more intellect!

Then on day two (after a scrumptious breakfast) we ended up being big kids and waterfighting with the boys! Also headed off to the candy Factory (do not take Reuben there) (although I did buy you something Reuben!) Followed by a fantastic game of mini golf (I won.....No wait, I think Scot blatantly did, followed by J...followed by Sheryl then me!)

Zayways I'll hopefully get pics up sometime - I abandoned my camera for the majority of the time.

I had an wonderful time - and learnt loads from Sheryl! SUCH a relaxed mum and they were SO generous to us! Thankyou !!

Meez xX

Washington DC at Night

After visiting the galleries we sacrificed an early night for delicious steak and a night photography expedition! We got the subway down to the Mall (big grass rectangle) and from there discovered that my tripod is a bit too weak for Js camera. Still got some luscious shots though.

Heres our favorite art pieces from earlier in the day. The first is a 6 foot ink mural, the second is just a small section of the 'blue and green harmony peacock room'. Its literally covered in this artwork.

Meez xX

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Washington DC

When we looked at the map of DC it looked like a big green rectangle surrounded by museums and monuments. It pretty much is like that but in a far cooler way than one would first think. Mum would love it, the museums are free and they are eeeendless. Dad would spend hours waiting for the people to clear so he could get a good clear photo of whatever it is that takes his fancy and Reuben would probably scream. At least your wallets are ok though because once you head to museum-ville you are basically in a fashion shop-free zone. AhhHHhh!!

We had loads of fun and went to the museum of Oriental art and also explored some exhibitions at the theatre (above - view from the theatre roof)

xX Love Meez

Friday, July 11, 2008

Please comment

Hey peeps if y'all reading this please comment so we know y'all are! Thank you xX Meez

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Water Heat

We travelled to DC and on for another 14 hours in a lush train carriage with big swooping seats. Our destination has beautiful trees leaning in all directions, a million lakes full of alligators and bright red yellow blue birds, caterpillars and butterflies. 

One night after walking through a jungle type scene over a stream (at 12 midnight) we saw a shuffling shape move across our those armadillos get everywhere (apparently they carry leperacy)

We set up camp in a shady area after riding in the back of a truck (the heat was beating down so hard) Since arriving we have been fed (cereal, hot dogs, noodles and rice) from people donating food at the 

communal area. We are well looked after and got to know heaps of people. The showers are always full of people singing and the guitars are in constant use - there's prayer tents and all sorts going on....

Anyone guessed yet? We are in Lakeland! The Florida Outpouring!

The night before we arrived 3000 people got baptised in water at the evening meeting. Our first night they organised a prayer tunnel to get to pray for everyone. The heat is intense - stodgy almost but its a great excuse to just sit still and relax, pray and think on God. 

It feels like Real community, Real life working church that you just suddenly live in. Everyone talks to everyone.

For those who have no idea What the Lakeland outpouring is, here it is:

We met a lady called Gwenda (?) who gave us hot dogs and advice on national parks. Her son got saved 2 days ago.

The meetings have been packed out - two massive marquees of people. We've been blessed by hearing 4 different people speak and 2 different worship leaders. Each night has been radially different. 

My favourite night was when we got together with some good friends from the campground - Dale and Grant. We chatted and prayed throughout our last meeting and maaaan it was amazing. We had only known them for 2 days and we're talking about life destiny.

We met a Rabbi - a Messaianic Jew. A few weeks ago he had a dream about a woman he was going to marry. At the rivival he saw the same woman and walked over to talk to her. They are to be married with a week!  (some years back she had a word spoken over her life about marrying within weeks of knowing her H2B (Husband to be)

Its amazing seeing the annointing on people here. The Rabbi prayed for everyone he met, his hands had oil on them that smelt so sweet.

I know that soooooo many people - even fellow Christians are skeptic about the outpouring here. YouTube slates Todd Bentley - but they forget to mention that the miricles happening her have actuallly been medically verified! Even if your not in it for the healing, there is fruit:

1) people are hearing the word and getting saved

2) people are worshiping - at the campground its 24/7!

3) people are praying and seeing their prayers answered

Worship word and prayer.

Zayways, the campsite is beautiful, but the heat is so intense I've had to shower 3 times a day to stop from burning up. The trees  look wistful and romantic and the lightning storms are powerful enough to rival any you might see anywhere. The campsite even has an 'extreme weather evacuation point'!

One night I was craving some chocolate and a young lad went and got me some proper choc cookies. Same night we were all mimicking accents (I've learnt that my alabaaaana accent aint so good boi) and talking about eating some good MEAT (the community cooking is aamazing and always right on time but some steak or something would be good)

The next night someone donate

d 60 burgers!! J's bbq skills came in helpful but the americans had a new thing on us - putting the burgers into hot water right after they are cooked to keep them juicy!?

I was torn when leaving - I'm going to miss the meal times and regular evening accent talking (our englishness is loved) but we know that God has a whole other adventure for us now. Im looking forward to getting some SLEEP (following photos were taken at about 3am)

Being away from the bugs would be nice! This fire ant would EAT you (well....make you feel on fire) Its dangerous man, you dont wana try nd squish it either.

We tried to photograph the fireflies too but it rained that night so there were only a couple.

These are J's poor feet that have been attacked. This was three nights ago and now they are even worse! :(

Some of y'all wana hear about what florida is like?

Its hot, sticky and pours with rain and is still hot all night. 

Some of y'all wana hear about the outpouring?

(man we didnt even plan on going we just did?!)

Is it real? Yes.

Is it worth going? Well God TV broadcasts it and you can pray and worship wherever you are. However, the campground is a whole other thing, its like Living in what its all about, everyone shares everything (in a Holy way!!!!!) 

If your going to go you gotta forget about 'home' - you wana get an open return so you can say as long or short as you need to.

Zayways  i've missed the blog!!!

I'm going on and on probably cuz this train is going on and on - to the next destination!

Peace maaan

Meez xX

ps: to those who were there at the campground - write a comment on this y'all !

Reuben Sandwich!

Hey Roo - these are pretty popular in the states - y'all can even get a Reuben with curly fries yo!

(Location: Washington station)

Love Meez xX

Thursday, July 3, 2008


Last night we were talking about food and money and what to eat that night (i wanted pizza) but without the expense of a restaurant.... Then a blessing arrived in the form of FREE PIZZAS stacked up in the hostel's breakfast room WOOP!