Monday, December 06, 2010

My Annual Blog Post, But Hopefully More Frequently!

Blogging is such a great thing and I really enjoy reading what everyone else has to say in the blogging world, so I thought I would try my hand and this again.

So, Christmas is coming. I really have to remind myself of it all the time since there aren't too many other things to remind me here. There is no changing of season, no blistery snow storms ,no Christmas decorations (except for three little stockings that I haven't hung yet) or traditions to really make a point of it. Christmas in Africa we call it...or maybe Christmas at the Earwickers? :) I would really love to get into the season better and I am looking forward to spending time with friends and celebrating with our church family.

Maybe living in a different climate and culture is a good way to keep focused on what Christmas is really about rather than making sure i've bought gifts for everyone and competing with the neighbors for the best decorated lawn.

So, this week I think i'll make some hand made decorations with Josiah, bake some cookies and maybe even get a tree put up..for the sake of making the point that this is a special time; a special time reflecting upon the reason we're even here in another nation...the birth of our Savior.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Over the River and Through The Woods...

On our way to grandma's house we decided Josiah should meet a very important person....

No Santa in Amsterdam on Christmas Eve, so Josiah took the opportunity to see what it's like to sit in His Huge chair.

We finally made it to grandma's house after a very looong journey. We flew in on Christmas Day at 12:00 am, got to Bend at 7:00 am, took a nap and then tore into the presents.

Here's Brent with little lucy all dressed up for the occassion.

The family together again!

Mommy helping Josiah celebrate his very first Christmas! What a blast.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Some Water For A Thirsty Soul

Proverbs 11:25 says that, "He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed."

The Lord brought to mind this verse the other day when I was reading a similar verse in Isaiah. My soul and spirit had been feeling so dry and tired and I was asking the Lord to make me like one of those trees he talks about who are planted by the life giving water that are always bearing fruit.

I realized that the Lord was showing me that I needed to do something to receive what I was asking for. Somehow this principle works! I decided to call one of my friends right away to see if she needed a break from her 6 kids. Turns out she was feeling really sick that day, so I went to her house to be an encouragement.

It's amazing how I began the day feeling like a dried up well and went home feeling the life come back into me, just because I decided to give the little I had to someone else.

Hope that encourages you if you're reading this and are in need of a little refreshing yourself!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

3rd Annual Thanksgiving in Uganda

Our first Thanksgiving in Uganda consisted of a meal of Matooke (boiled bananas) and beans. We had been in country for about a week and had hit the ground running. So we ended up having a pretty "ordinary" day, helping at one of Drake's crusades.

Our second Thanksgiving was spent up North in Lira at the Higgins with the Iversons. The food was sooooooo yummy and i'm especially fond of the wonderful cinnamon rolls that Carol prepared.

This year we just drove down the street and spent Thanksgiving with our friends the Iversons. As you can see in the last picture, we had quite a spread. Everything was so delicious and the compay even better!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Heart to Heart

For some reason it seems that it's harder to decide what to title these blog posts than what to actually write as the text. (That was just a side thought).

This morning as I was reading in my bible I came upon this familiar scripture:
Proverbs 4:23- Above all else, guard your heart, for it affects everything you do.

For a long time the only time I ever heard the term "guarding my heart" was before I was married, and it was used in the context of keeping my emotions in check regarding the opposite sex. There is much more that applies to this principle than just silly adolescent crushes.
Living on the mission field in Uganda generates quite a bit of talk between my husband and I about why God has called us here and what He's called us to do in order to make sure we're on the right track. And sometimes I find that I lose sight of the vision and forget why i'm here at all because of what i've learned to call, "losing heart". On many occasions it's a culmination of what people have said to me, how different the culture is and it's misunderstandings , bad experiences i've had, friends that have disappointed me/lack thereof and a myriad of other things that have caused this wilting of soul to take place. That's why this verse is so important to put into practice. In order to be moving in the right direction, the heart must be in health and kept from all the things that would want to poison it, and distract one from the purpose.

Matthew Henry's commentary of this verse put's it well:

"We must maintain a holy jealousy of ourselves, and set a strick guard, accordingly, upon all the avenues of the soul; keep our hearts from doing hurt and getting hurt; from being defiled by sin and disturbed by trouble; keep them as our jewel, as our vineyard; keep a conscious void of offense; keep bad thoughts out; keep up good thoughts; keep the affections upon right objects and in due bounds. There are many ways of keeping things by care, by strength, by calling in help, and we must use them all in keeping our hearts.

So, today i've renewed my commitment to do just that and watch and see the good fruit that will come of it! God's word is so good....and works!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Boot

So, Josiah and I were sitting in the car waiting for Brent to run a quick errand recently when I heard a big thumping noise by the side of the car. Simultaneously I saw Brent come out of the store saying, "Hey, I'm right here". I thought for sure someone was trying to steal the tire off our car or something. Looking behind me I saw a white vehicle stopped behind ours and a man getting back into the passenger seat. As Brent discussed whatever had just happened with the driver of the car, I unbuckled Josiah from his car seat, got out off the car, looked at the rear tire and noticed we had been slapped with the infamous "boot". There it was in all it's glory, virtually imprisoning our vehicle without us even knowing.

Come to find out, contrary to what we had assumed was the reasoning behind this unexpected turn of events, the man in the little car informed us it wasn't illegal parking, but rather mispayment of 2 parking tickets (the same as the function of a marking meter in the states). Yep, they had our licence plate written in a book and they were on the prowl for offenders. What we tried to explain to the man was that when the parking control person put a ticket on our car in these two incidents, their shift was over upon our return and there was no one to pay by the time we came back to the car. Can I honestly say we didn't really realize anyone cared too much about these 5oo shilling (meters/tickets) and didn't know how to reconcile it.

What we also found out that fateful day was that the fine jumped from 500 shillings to 20,000 shillings for every ticket unpaid. So our total fine came to 60,000 shillings including the "boot removal fee". We were stunned and there was no sign of any mercy coming from the "clamp man" for our ignorance of Ugandan parking procedures. And they explained that if we didn't pay, our car would be towed and impounded. This all came at a very bad time because we really had no money and were barely even able to buy food that month. We tried to explain this to the man, but I doubt he hardly believed us.

Why do random bad things always have to happen all at the same time anyway? The kind of days where everything runs out and breaks in your house and you have no money to fix it, when you find little worms in your bed and you have to go on dollar ice cream dates..... and then you're car almost gets towed away over pennies.

So anyway, with no mercy still in sight I quietly became overwhelmed at the whole situation and began to cry. Little did I know this would cause a stirring amongst our car captors and they immediately got out of the car and removed the boot and let us go with the condition that we would eventually pay the fees. Who would have thought that shedding a little tears would do the trick......sort of. Still have to pay the fees, but at least we didn't have to walk home! Oh, the joys of living in another culture.

So, the moral of the story is- always pay your parking fees and if you live in another country and don't know how the system works...find out ahead of time so you don't have to embarrass yourself in public by shedding a few tears.

All for now...

Sunday, October 05, 2008

When You Don't Have Super Cuts in Africa....

...You become your own hair stylist.

Since Brent wouldn't help me out due to the fact that the last time he cut someone's hair for them they never asked him again and because I can't just pop over to the local hair (saloon) as they call it here, I decided to try it myself. And I have to say, I didn't do a bad job, though i'm still in need of a little touch up. A bit longer in the back than in the front.

Anyone have any suggestions for an amateur like me?