Sunday, March 28, 2010


I had the opportunity to go to a women's tea here in the city we are in. It was such an encouragement to my heart. Something I really needed. I was surrounded by so many amazing women, some of whom have traveled this road a while and have so much wisdom for us in this season of life.

The speaker was able touch the surface of Proverbs 31 in a way I had never really thought much about. How do I a woman, be a woman of excellence in a culture so different from my own? I've really been thinking about this a lot recently and if there are any parts of my own culture that have been in the way of relationships. She touched on many aspects of how different our lives are, learning new cultural ins and outs aren't just so we can blend in, or so we don't step on any toes, but can if I refuse to embrace this culture how hurtful it can be to friends.

Another area that I really became more aware of is my attitude toward certain cultural things that really bug me. Honestly I think one will never love everything in a culture. In fact I can think of several things about American culture that bug me. I've really been convicted to be cautious in how I speak of these things in our home. We have a sponge of a little boy, who pick up these things and honestly he's doesn't know the difference. In his world right now waiting in a line don't exist, mayo is a food group, black is not just a color but the color all clothing should be, and stopping work to visit with a friend takes precedent. I would hate for my words to shape his attitude of the culture we live in.

So there you have it that's what's been going on in my heart recently. I'm excited to see how Father shows me more areas in my life that need to be molded.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Our Favorite Park

Last weekend we hopped on a bus and headed to one of our favorite places in the city. A park along the water. It was such a beautiful and clear day, we even were able to see the Islands, a place we hope to visit sometime when it's warm. Calvin had a blast and of course the day was defined by the juice we let him pick out for our picnic lunch.

It was a cherry juice kind of day!

A day to fall asleep on the bus ride back home.
Oh how I missed warm weather!

Friday, March 26, 2010

What's new with us.

Well our documents arrived this week!!! We can't wait to get back home, to a place we can actually communicate. But it's been absolutely goregous here. I could seriously just sit in the sun all day. I plan to enjoy every spring day we have here because spring isn't really spring back home. We're looking at just a mere two more weeks in this city!!!

Other news is that Calvin's art skills are improving. He drew this little picture for us. Can you guess what it's suppose to be? Anybody????

Give Up?

Let me help.

He drew it right after we showed him this picture.

It's a pretty good understanding of what's going on in his world, those two year old eyes are always learning, and I love these little peaks inside his brain. Our newest little baby is expected to arrive late October! Grateful is just the tip of the iceburg! I just can't wait to be past the icky sick part.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Our little observer

Calvin's always been an observer, from day one. He takes it all in. So when he found a scarf in one of the toy boxes here, guess what he did with it?

Covered his head of course!

P.S. The scarf was rather patriotic, but I promise it was a bandana not a flag.

Oh the madness

This is one of Marvin's favorite times of year. Basketball craziness is what I call it. This season starts out with State basketball. He's been following our nephew for the past 3 years and it's unbelievable they came up with another amazing state championship. That makes 4 State Championships in the last 2 years, basketball and football. Crazy huh! We're pretty proud of him to say the least, but Marvin was thankful that it was over, so his sleep could resume to a normal persons sleep pattern. No more waking up at 3:00 a.m. to listen to the games, but I think a few more games will lure him out of his sleep.

Now we are about to start his favorite part of basketball craziness, March madness. He gets so excited every year. Every year I tease him about how much thought he puts into his brackets, while I just fill them it out in less than 5 minutes. This year we both are rooting for our alma mater, K-State. Marvin's picked them to lose against West Virgina and I have them getting beat by Kentucky (I think) in the finals. Should be interesting.

Now what was so fun this year is we had Calvin fill out a bracket. Marvin showed him pictures of the mascots and he choose which team he wanted to win purely on his favorite out of the two choices. Some favorites of his were a pirate which we thought would win the whole thing based on how exited he is about pirates right now but apparently the pirate didn't have what it took to win of the whole thing. Georgetown and Georgia State were also favorites because of his love of Curious George. The choo choos of Purdue highly impressed him and his favorite team of all was........Lehigh. We were proud of his bold move, picking them over big bird as he calls KU (and we let him), but we didn't imagine he would have them going the whole way. We got such a kick out of it and he loved the game too. I wish I could upload a video we took but for some reason the country we are in doesn't allow it. A picture will have to do.

Happy Madness!!!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Day at the Aquarium

This Monday we had to be out of the apartment for the healthy part of a day so the cleaning lady could come and clean the apartment we are staying in. So we decided to head to a new aquarium in town. It just opened this fall and is supposed to be the biggest aquarium in Europe.

It took us 2 hours to get there via public transportation (this city is HUGE)! But we finally made it. Calvin was pretty excited to see the sharks.

As soon as we walked in the door he was overcome with excitement as we meet a Star Fish. He shook Calvin's hand and boy did Calvin's eyes just light up. It was certainly one of the highlights of the trip. We heard lots of WHOOO, OHHHH, WOWs during our time there.

It was the perfect length for Calvin's attention span. In far as coolness the National aquarium was a little better in my opinion. They had more exibits and well it just helps when you can read the signs. I'm sure if we'd been studying about sea life it would be the perfect little field trip. One thing that really impressed me is how child friendly everything was. The staff was helpful to tell all the kids about what they were looking at, we just smiled and nodded. They had little food pellets that the kids could feed the fish with open tanks. In several tanks they had people in wet suits holding some of the sea life and even let the kids touch a few.

We were glad we took the time to visit and who knows maybe we'll visit again in the future.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Catching Up

A couple of days before we left Nineveh we had some friends come and visit. It was fun showing them around the city. They brought their youngest and Calvin was so excited. But like any child his size or smaller Calvin thought he was a baby. It was too funny watching them attempt to play, let's just say there were a few tense moments between a third child and an only child.
We let their little guy take Calvin's room, so Calvin got to sleep in his firetruck "bed" in our room and oh boy was he excited. We just set up some blankets inside this little firetruck tent our teammates outgrew. It actually worked out quite nicely and it was fun hearing his sleep sounds as we drifted off to sleep. It's a side of him we don't see too often. We were thankful for some good time with friends even if it was a crazy time to have guests.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

My Sunday Date

Last weekend I took Calvin on a little date. We meandered to a playground where I used to push him around in his stroller as a baby to try and get him to take an afternoon nap. He actually got to enjoy it this time.

What I didn't factor in was how far it was from where we are staying. He was a trooper and walked most of the way there, uphill. I was very grateful for this because for some reason all 28 lbs. of him seem to be more solid now. The second we rounded the corner of the building that stands at the park entrance, his eyes got really big and this is what he said, "WHOOO WATER YEAH!! It was pretty sweet. He loved the water fountains and the bridges.

Since it took us a bit longer to get there we stopped for local food on the way home. Everyone is so sweet to children here. Our waiter even made sure Calvin got a juice that wasn't cold, for his health of course. What I didn't remember is how I don't care for lamb, so both Calvin and I barely touched our lunch. Marvin enjoyed our leftovers later. I was thankful I had some crackers in my bag that Calvin enjoyed while we waited.

The trip home was a bit longer, I almost thought about getting a taxi, but it was only 4 long blocks. But with a tired toddler and one big hill, it made for a long trip.
So I hope to have many more fun dates like this with my little man in the future, but hopefully better planned.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The new face

Calvin picked up making faces from his little buddy back home. So everytime the camera rolls out guess what face we see????

This one.

Not sure I like it, I miss that sweet little grin of his.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Perfect book/movie weather

It's been raining here the last few days and a bit chilly too. We didn't pack well for this type of weather and I've been getting a lot of use out of the one sweater I brought. Since I was getting so much use out of it, I decided to buy another one. We're loving the sales right now on winter wear.

I devoured a book in one day and I was reminded why I don't read very often....I'm consumed by fiction books when I pick them up. Everything else around me just gets pushed aside till I finish the book, and I mean everything like eating and sleep. Unfortunately being a mom this doesn't go over too well, but it seems like we have nothing to do most of our days so I indulged myself and was enveloped in a book for a day.

Last week Marvin picked up several movies and it's been good to help the time pass. I just adored Julie and Julia, it was refreshing how a movie can show a husband in such a positive supportive light. However I wish they left out a little of the language, really wasn't necessary. Hate it when they do that.

We watched Precious the other night. Talk about a heavy movie. So heartbreaking to know that her story is many women's story. Sometimes it's easy to forget about the sin of our world, when it's not effecting you. I cannot imagine hearing such hateful things from your mother. It was painful to hear, can't imagine how much more painful it was to receive. It's got me thinking more and more about how I can interceed for those around us. Abuse is very common in the area we live in, I can't imagine how freeing truth is for women who've suffered years and years of such pain.

This week we also ventured out sans Calvin for a little date. It's always nice to be alone in the middle of the day, no intruptions, not constantly bombarded with questions like "what's that mama? what's her name?" And I got to hold Marvin's hand which makes me happy. We went to see Invictus. Another great movie and lots of great themes and stuff to talk about. I cannot imagine living in South Africa during this time period, talk about some serious healing that had to happen and is still needing to happen.

We're still waiting on paperwork so we can apply for our visas. This feeling of stuck is not new, just trying to get some study hours in during the week to feel a little productive. I had some moments this week where I was itchin to get back home, but for the most part just trying to be content in where Father has us right now. There are many positives to being in this city right now and we'll try to stay focused on those.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Week One of The Waiting Game

So it's been fun being back at our home away from home. This city is familiar to us, we feel comfortable getting around town, know where stuff is, even know a few shortcuts to get places, and bump into people we know. Unfortunately we still don't know much of the language, which really stinks. When you can't communicate it's rough. It may seem crazy but before our next trip here I'd like to learn a little more.

So far our first week here we've just settled in, done a little food shopping and visited IKEA and the shopping center near it. It's funny experiencing this city with a toddler, we're trying to keep him busy and not bored, and we're trying to do the same. I do think I have reached my mall limit already. It's just not as much fun to shop when the prices are ridiculous and you can't even entertain the thought of buying anything.

So just for fun I thought I'd make a list of a few things that have made our days recently more enjoyable!

  • The ferry docks! We only spent a few minutes there yesterday but Calvin loved every second of it we can't wait to go to our favorite dock and enjoy a beautiful morning, and probably even take a picnic lunch.
  • The WEATHER, hello spring oh how I missed you. We're enjoying the warmer weather and don't even mind the spring rain. Glad to say goodbye to the snow suit for a while.
  • Carrots. I know it sounds silly but they have taste, and boy are they tasty!
  • Playgrounds within walking distance. Calvin already knows where they are at and begs to go play every time we leave the building.
  • Friendly people, although I have no idea what they are saying, who just adore children.

So while we're waiting we hope to get out a little bit and enjoy the weather and the city. But this afternoon I better hit the books and study a bit. I have high goals while we are here and it looks like I have a long enough time to meet them.

Starting to figure these things out.

We've been working on potty training Calvin. For the most part we've had dry days. Recently I've been proud of him, when he catches himself having to go he'll stop and kind of waddles around to the toilet, sometimes a little has escaped. I think we're making progress!
Now here's my question for all you seasoned moms. Here's our current problem. Whenever he gets mad or we put in him in his room for timeout and he works himself up he almost always has an accident. Any thoughts on how to curb this or what we need to do? I'm pretty stumped on this one.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010


Being away from my sewing machine makes me dream.
I'm so excited to turn this shirt

From the moment I saw this I thought about making one but didn't have any extra fabric, now I have some.

Using those lemons for lemonade!

P.S. If you've never checked out Dana's blog you should. She just finished a month celebrating the boy. There are some seriously cute ideas there.