Mikayla joined our team in 2000 and has been a valuable member since then.  She is creative, fun, loves photography, reading, writing, and traveling.  She also enjoys drama and has had the opportunity to be in three Shakespeare plays.  Mikayla is most looking forward to seeing and experiencing the many things she has read about as well as just spending time with her family.

Day 2: Danny’s Ants

Day 2: Danny: There were really big red ants at the restaurant we ate at for breakfast. This is how big they were (see photo). They were carrying leaves at least twice as big as they were. The ants looked like big spiders but only had six legs. For brunch, we had Empanadas. They were pastries stuffed with turkey ham, peppers, cheese, and tomatoes. I’m not sure if I liked them, but everyone else did!

Ryan Thomas

Ryan joined us in 2001.  He is our resident IT person…our “computer guy.”  Of course, we’re just teasing, but he does love programming as well as playing the guitar.  He can’t seem to get enough time outdoors, playing sports, swimming, etc., and it is a full time job to keep him well-fed.  The destination he is most excited about visiting?  Tahiti!

Finally Here!!!

A small stream of light hit my eyes, rudely awakening me from a deep sleep. “Mikayla…” I mumbled something inaudible, too tired to care if the loud voice could understand me.  How could they have had the audacity to rouse me from my ever-so-needed beauty sleep?  And then I remembered.  It was Monday, June 16, the day of our departure from Illinois to Mexico.  This was the day I’d been anticipating for months!  Now it was finally here. “C’mon, Mikayla.  It’s time to get ready.  We’re already running a little behind,” my… Read More


Reflections: “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord Almighty.” ~ Zech 4:6. I have never feared traveling, but with four dear children now in tow, that has changed quite a bit. In moments of doubt and fear, this verse has encouraged our hearts. We recognize that we are not alone and we take comfort in knowing it’s through His strength and protection we can go out.


Kathryn quietly joined the team in 2003, but don’t be fooled.  Once she hit 18 months, she was off and running.  Katie especially enjoys reading, writing, photography, being outdoors, and nature.  She has a very nurturing heart and loves caring for both little children and animals.  She is passionate about everything she does and jumps into life 100%.  Her destination of choice?  Africa.  No surprise, right?


Danny was the last to join Team Gainor and did so in 2005.  He has brought a lot of laughter into our household and has a special way of drawing us together as a family.  He enjoys humor, reading, writing, games, and chess.  He also loves history and being outdoors.  He is most excited about seeing all of the animals in Africa as well as visiting Hobbiton in New Zealand.

5 Days to Go: Packing Cubes

5 Days to go:  These Packing Cubes are great! Here are a few things we purchased yesterday. I’ll let you know how they work out. 1. Eagle Creek Half Tube Cubes (good for underwear and socs). 2. Eagle Creek Pack it Specter Cube Sets (a set of 3 different sizes each, all light, stain & water resistant). 3. REI Expandable Packing Cube Set (a set of 2 different sized cubes). 4. A few other various sizes and shapes. Who knew packing could be so much fun?

14 Days

14 DAYS: The days are flying quickly and we are at the two week mark. There’s so much left to do. We purchased our backpacks and the last one finally arrived this weekend. Now we turn our attention to the task of packing up our home. I started to do this in earnest yesterday and now remember why I always started this task 2-4 months prior to moving! But…like a wedding, no matter how much is left to do, we are confident it will get done. This is a photo we took at… Read More