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Thursday, 30 March 2006

I think a lot...

So, it seems to me that I am thinking and processing a lot in my life. I process why people act how they act. I think about what makes things work like they work. I process the miracles of communication and how communication can be the key to unlocking so many relationships. I think about my friends, from long ago and from more recently. I process how they have shaped and will continue to shape my life.

My dear friend Sharon told me recently that she was thinking about how knowing the little things about a person is what keeps you connected to that person. She is so wise and so insightful! These are the things I miss about people from the states. Did you get a new car? Is that a new hair style? Did you join a new study group? Did God show you some new way to glorify Him in a situation?

And those are the things that I miss people knowing about me: I found these really cool earrings in Florence. I hate flying insects like moths and beetles... yet I have had an infestation of little flying beetles in my flat recently. I love going to a movie when I am stateside... but here the cost is outrageous so I watch the dvds that I brought over instead... and for me... who rarely likes to read a book or watch a movie twice.. this has been challenging. I got to sit in the sun for lunch on Monday and then walk in the rain Monday night.

Tuesday night I got to go to a wine tasting. It was an incredible experience and I learned SO much. Did you know that red wine is made red from the little pockets of color that are in the skin? The juice is white! :-) Here we are learning about the oak barrels. This is the team I work with.

When I was younger, a missionary came to my church and I do not remember the deep spiritual insights that she shared, but I do remember that someone would send her a weekly letter about what people wore to church that Sunday, what the weather was like, who got engaged, who had a baby, who moved, etc... That impacted me.

I think that is why I like to blog... it gives me the chance to share normal life here. And that is why I love to read other blogs.. they give me a glimpse into normal life somewhere else. Tabitha does a great job and so does Sean in their blogs. .. just normal life.

Well, that is all for now, just wanted to say what was on my mind... well some of it... don't want to overwhelm anyone. :-)

Friday, 24 March 2006

my week

So, this week I had the pleasure and responsibility of taking care of two of my favorite little people here in Kandern. Silas and Efram Workman.
Silas is 5 years old


Efram is 2 years old. It has been a lot of fun despite the massive change in my schedule. :-) Anyway, I thought I should post photos of the two boys who were in my life this week. :-)

Tuesday, 21 March 2006

The pleasure of a good friend

Seriously... one of the most important things about a transition of the magnitude that I am going through is to be connected to good friends. New friends and friends from years gone by. I just want to share about one group of friends that has been a steady source of encouragment during past few months.

So there is this group of girls that I have had the privilege to be a part of for the past 3 or is it 4 years now? I am more grateful every day for the influence that we have each had in each other's lives.

Sara is part of the group... so her coming to Kandern on her way back to Burundi was so special. We got to walk around the little town that I dwell in and just catch up.

Bekah is part of the group... I got to go see her in Prague this past week. So refreshing to just talk and catch up and look at the process that God has us in. I cut her hair and two of her friends' hair.. that was fun.

Kristin is part of the group... and she and I will meet up in Venice Italy this summer after her mission trip to Slovenia. I am so excited to travel with her!...even if it is for a short time.

How privileged and special am I? wow...

and to top it off... I get to go see Rakel Thurman, Allen Jones, Peter and Jen Hibbs and Janice Beeghly as they have an 8 hour layover in London on their way back from Sudan in a couple weeks. London is a short hop and sounds like the perfect way to spend my weekend! :-)

Thursday, 16 March 2006

learning to be real

I made it to Prague. :-)

Okay... the title.. learning to be real. What is real? I know that this is something I will probably relearn and learn more about all my life. The latest installment? A wise woman told me yesterday that being okay with sadness and hurt makes us more beautiful and more real. (my paraphrase) That stuck with me on the plane ride to Prague...

So I have been looking at what it means to feel alone in the midst of a group of people who love me. And how sometimes that is just the way it is. It is times of aloneness that draw me closer to the Lord and make me more aware of His beauty in my life.

I think I am seeing what it means to find beauty in the intermingling of joy and sorrow, beauty and sadness, pain and laughter, tears and gladness. ... strange and yet beautiful. And being real means that there is not a need to cover up who we are to those we meet.

One of my newer friends made a statement that I seem very open. I have to say that struck me too... cause I have always wanted to be open and vulnerable but I don't like to be hurt. Praise the Lord for His work in my life that I can be less afraid to be open, vulnerable and real.

Anyway... just a bit of my thoughts today as I sit in a Prague cafe with my dear friend Bekah.

Sunday, 12 March 2006

flexibility and a sense of humor

So... this morning I arrived at the Basel/Mulhouse Euro airport to take a flight to see my dear friend Bekah in Prague... after checking in, I made my way to the gate... through the security check where I got the pat-down, through the outside tunnel that takes you to easy jet. I purchased a bottle of water (since easy jet does not give that stuff away for free) and settled in to wait.
I read the copy of Oscar Wilde's "The picture of Dorian Gray" for about an hour and then I saw everyone around me getting up and lining up at the gates... I say gates because the flight to Madrid was leaving around the same time and the gates were almost one gate... and there was a bit of confusion on the parts of the potential passengers because they were not sure which flight was boarding. I helped out a group of young college guys who were discussing if it was for their flight or not.. I walked by and told them it was the flight to Madrid... as I walked away I heard them saying to each other.. ."she speaks English!" :-) fun times.
So we are all gathered for our respective flights and I see the desk clerks discussing with the ground crew... and they are not announcing that boarding will occur... I start to think... uh oh... It looked like all the workers were trying to decide who would have to address the crowd.. poor guy... as he began to speak in German you could hear the collective groan and array of dismays... I understood enough German to know that the flight was cancelled due to snow... in Prague.
"and if everyone would follow...they would take us to our luggage and we could re book flights via phone. internet (that word is the same in any language) or at the info desk.
So... the amoeba of a group (all with cell phones to ears or text messages flying) made its way to the security check point and stopped. You can't go through security backwards you know... :-) so they had to stop traffic and then... at the go ahead we all poured through security and to the Info desk... yeah... crazy people.
So... about 1 hour later, I left that desk with a flight out on Wednesday and a return 1/2 hour later on Wednesday and the dear young man who helping me was very aplogetic and asked me to call the service desk to have them fix it. With that... I went to collect my small suitcase (small enough for carryon... but I didn't want to carry it on)
I must say... I know more about the Euro Airport than I ever wanted to know.
And as I made my way out to where Brad had been waiting for the past 45 minutes... it suddenly hit me what had happened and I was exhausted. But... as I told him... after a lot of thank yous, was this: "It is frustrating... but no one's fault. So really... I can't be upset."
So I thank God for teaching me to be flexible... one of the first things I learned about missions 14 years ago. And that He gave me the ability to see humor in the whole thing. ... much less stressful than those who were about to pop a blood vessel. :-)

Oh...and I now have a flight in on Wednesday and out on Saturday... God is good and faithful

Sunday, 5 March 2006

I don't know when I have had this much fun in a loooong time

SNOW!!!!! lots of snow... and I was free to play in it!!!!! :-)

It snowed all day on Saturday and then Sunday it was all there... in its white glory! I went to church and worshiped God in song and listening to a good message and then I went outside and worshiped God in nature!

First Deb and I had lunch and then we hiked/wandered/walked up a hill... I am so thankful for a boss who loves to play and have fun with me. :-)

Then Deb had to go pack for a trip so I went and found Scott and Adrienne and we all three went to get Brad and so I had more friends to go play in the snow with. :-) Snowball fights, snow falls, hiking, really wet jeans, cold hands, hot chocolate.

Adrienne, Scott, Brad, and then me. I actually did this several times.. it is so fun! :-)

Felt like a pretty near perfect day to me... great conversations, beautiful weather, freedom to just play, good friends... good times.