Monday, June 30, 2008

YOU try translating "Hash Brown" to a Norweigan

I have had a great couple of days with our house full and our days packed. Ian and I talked last night, and we really think that the gift of hospitality might be one of our gifts, and we just love hosting people in our house.

After Saturday night's rather strange turn of events, I went to bed early. We woke up early too, so I guess it's good that I got some sleep. We tried a new church here in town, but it ended up being a complete disaster. Besides taking our friend with us (which, you know, puts a little more pressure on the church you are visiting,) the music was horrible, the preaching only surface level, and the congregation seemed detached and unparticapatory. We will keep searching.....Please pray that we can find the new church home that we are looking for. We know no church is perfect, but we want a place where we can be challenged and also serve at. Our first church visit might just be that place.

Anyways, we came home and grabbed a sandwich lunch, then headed out to a UF owned lake. There we could rent kayaks, canoes, or paddleboats, go swimming, go on a ropes course, take wakeboarding or sailing lessons, or use their fields to play- All of this for free! As long as you have someone with you that has a UF ID. I'm really excited, because we love to do outdoors activities, but do not have the money to pay for some of them right now.

So we kayaked for about an hour, than swam and jumped from the dock, then headed over to the other side of the lake to play some frisbee golf (not my first pick, but I like to try!) but were stopped by those famous Florida afternoon storms.

We came back home, got showered and cleaned up, then I made a big taco dinner for everyone. Katie K, I used your wonderfully delicious nacho dip recipie, and it was a hit! Then, we headed out to give Svein a truly American experience, the movies! We saw Wall-E, which was so incredibly good, and a laugh out loud kind of movie. I would recommend it for any age group!

My big sister comes for a visit on Wednesday, and I am really excited for some girl time! Also, our dear family friends leave this week for China to adopt their new baby boy "Jack." Keep them in your prayers. ALSO my close friend Jenny has her Olympic trial this week for running. Hopefully we will see her on the tv screen very soon!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Strange Strange Strange

I have had a weird evening tonight. You see, we had our first visitor tonight. Ian's good friend (and one of his groomsmen,) Sam, returned from his travels tonight, and popped on over to say hi and get caught up. So all day long, I was psyched to see someone "from the outside." I am probably going a little stir crazy, but I guess that happens when you stay in your apartment for two weeks with only trips to publix and target to get you out of the house.

I digress...

So, I baked cookies, and made sure the house didn't smell like bacon from this morning, and was pretty darn excited. Until about 8:15. When I found out Mrs. Angela (close family friend and my ex"babysitter") got a blog. So I quickly jumped over and read her new entries. Cried hysterically when I found out her son, Carter, my ring bearer, had just accepted Jesus into his life, and then quickly began reading the rest of her blog, and began reading her "other blogs."

By the way.. is that okay to do? I mean, is that proper blogging manners? I believe it is because they posted their blogs as public and not private so it's okay, but do you ever feel like you are intruding on someone else's life by reading a stranger's blog?

Again.. I digress.

So I am reading this blog that she had posted, and I am very intrigued by the pictures posted. I start asking Ian if the family looks normal and what was up with the youngest child's picture. So I jump back to the first post and find out their whole story. I get so wrapped up in reading this family's heartbreaking story, that I am sitting in our office crying when our company arrives, sobbing for the next two hours over their trials and lessons they have learned from. I won't tell you all about're gonna have to read it yourself. But my suggestion is to get a glass of milk, some cookies, a ton of tissues, and a quiet room, and just read, starting in January.

Well, our "company," is still playin stratego with my husband so I don't think my wifely presence has been too missed.

Oh yes. Big news. Ian's friend Svein called today. Svein is from Norway. Actually he is from a Norweigan family who raised him in Japan. He then went to college in Egypt and has been traveling the world such as to the Sudan, Jordan, and a myriad of obscure places, before finally deciding to visit all of his pals that he met in Jordan this summer. So... Svein is in the US! And coming to stay with US! lol.

I never would have thought that two weeks into my marriage, a Norweigan would be staying with us for an undisclosed period of time. Talk about a "You, Me, and Dupree," kind of setting.

So, Svein arrives from Miami via a ride with a friend, tonight. It took Ian quite awhile to convince Svein not to hitchhike his way here; that it is not the same as in Jordan.

Long post, I know. Hope this got you up to date... gave you some reading material...and maybe made you smile a little.

The church hunt continues tomorrow with Norweigan in tow. Then we are all headed out to a spring for some swimming in the afternoon. My husband and I....and his two pals. Weird.

I miss my girls!!!!

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Happenings (No, not the movie...)

This week has flown by, with relatively nothing going on. Early in the week, I spent a day or two buying and putting up curtains for the bedroom and the family room. I got the bedroom finished and it looks absolutely wonderful! But the curtains for the family room were too short, so I had to return them and special order the long ones. They will really make the family room feel more homey, instead of a giant walk way to the porch.

Yesterday and today, Ian had his MAIB orientation at UF, so I have had the apartment to myself. I decided to tackle several small "projects." One included getting our vaccuum cleaner to stop stinking. It turned out to be as easy as changing the bag! Woohoo for a pleasant smelling vaccuum cleaner!

Then I decided to explore the new library system here. I did some online research, then braved the heat outside, and ventured to the nearest branch (less than 2 miles away,) and got my new card and checked out some education books.

I started reading the book, The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide To Classical Education. It's actually a book for parents wanting to homeschool their children using the classical method (language driven with minimal "visual fluff.") But...seeing as I do not have any children, I am reading this with the mindset that this might be interesting to implement into my public school classroom. It's not really feasible, because it involves stretching information out over all 12 years, and needs alot of one on one time-which is perfect for a homeschooling parent, but not so much for a classroom of 20 kids. I have, however, been able to pull out some ideas for use, and it has been a nice refresher on teaching reading and phonics. I'm only 70 pages into this 690 page book :/ But it's a very good read. I recommend it.

My final project that I am working on involves getting things ready for my classroom. I had boxes and boxes of books that I had accumulated over my college career, but I didn't have any idea of what I had, or what I lacked. So I inventoried them. That's right. I unpacked all of the books, poured them out all over our beautiful office floor, sorted, stacked, then actually "inventoried," them into a Word document. Then, over the next couple of weeks, I can go through the list and find out what genres of books I am missing, make lesson plans for reading groups, and designing activities for the books.

This should be fun....

The Outpouring of the Books Begin

My Favorite books from Children's Lit! Except they are out of print and only could be found in these massive volumes!

Imagine my surprise when I found the whole series at a used book store! 1.50 a piece was well worth this fun series introducing children to the world of science fiction/fantasy. And I got four of Book One so we could do a reading group with it!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Books Wonderful BOOKS!

Well, we finally finished our beautiful office rearranging. And it wasn't really the desk or bookcases that were being rearranged, but our numerous books. Of course we had to sort them by fiction/nonfiction, which certainly meant we had to further sort them into genres such as M work, History, Theology, Biographies, Ministry, Christian Living, Politics, Islam, Middle East, Education, and Languages, to name a few.

If you could only imagine the agony poor Ian faced when having to sort a book entitled "The history and theology of Christian m w rk in the middle east" Haha, it was quite the decision. I think it ended up in m, in case you were wondering.

This room has quickly become our favorite. Probably because it is the only room close to being finished. Or because it is the only room with real furniture. Or maybe just because we love books so much. I find myself laying on the floor in front of the window staring at the books wondering which one I should read next.

So here are a few pictures of my favorite little spot in the world:

Also, I finished my correspondance frame! For the wedding, I got this gift from my friend Rachel's family. It was a frame with a magnetic canvas backing, and these great clothespins for a faux clothesline. So since Ian and I are concerned about keeping track of all the people we want to keep in touch with, I decorated the board with reminders of people we need to call/email/write weekly, biweekly, and monthly. I also wrote up the names and dates of people's birthdays in the coming month, and a verse that I want to memorize in July. It hangs on the wall next to the desk and looks great...or at least I think so. What do you think?

More about our church visit to come....

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Beginning a New Week

We are back from the honeymoon trip. The keys were wonderful, especially since it was my first real beach vacation. We went to Key west for a day, hung out at the resort and the many pools/lagoons, and went on a full day snorkeling trip. The second I jumped into the water, I looked underneath me, and what do you know? A shark! I was shocked and nearly drowned my dear new husband trying to get away from that thing- only to realize it was about 3 feet long!Unfortunately, never having been out on the ocean, I had no idea that I would get so incredibly sea sick. That was not so fun.

But you know what was fun? Key Lime Pie! and eating fish! Sheesh. I have never really been a fish eater, but I ate it every single day down there! I am going to have to learn how to make that pie here at home, the good, thick kind, that is.

Tomorrow morning Ian and I begin the process of finding a new church home. I have been at FBCOviedo for over 12 years now, I can hardly grasp the concept of finding a new church family. We did our online research and found 3 so far that we want to try out. I am praying that we find one we can get heavily involved in. We want a church that we can serve in. Ian really wants to get involved with the international students and/or the jail ministry, and I am undecided which ministry I want to help out with the most. I will be working with kids all day long, so I think a different age group would be nice to change things up. Maybe high school? Possibly middle. And definitely a women's Bible Study.

I'll have pictures up soon of our wonderful little apartment and all of the lovely goodness it has so far. Pardon the lack of furniture....we're newlyweds therefore we have no money.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

In a little over 12 hours, I am getting married. This past week has gone by in such a blur, but I am so very grateful for it to be over with. Meetings, decisions, and To Do lists seem to have dominated my last few sweet days at home with my family. Luckily, I think I have been pretty calm through it all. A small hiccup with the tuxedo's has been my only real point of stress, and hopefully, it will be corrected by tomorrow morning.

I don't think the whole thing has really hit me yet. I think it will sometime tomorrow (or at least I hope it will!) Probably when I put on my gown, or when my hair is done.

Honeymoon in the Keys and a chance to cross of many of my bucket list items including:
  • Go to the Keys
  • Swim with Dolphins
  • Go Parasailing
  • Go Jet Skiing
  • Go Snorkeling
  • Eat a fish I caught
  • Order Room Service

I think that is about it. I'll be back in a few days with pictures of the wedding and the new home.

Until Then...

Thursday, June 5, 2008

A First

Tomorrow, when I wake up, I will be moving away from home.

For the first time. EVER.

It's such a surreal feeling. I don't actually get to live in my new home until next week, after the wedding. Or rather, the week after, post-honeymoon.

My most wonderful friends will be helping me move up some things, but the main job for tomorrow will be painting the office and the master bedroom. Also, we hope to be painting the great room, but I have to remind myself to be realistic...that six girls can only do so much in one day.

Then, on Saturday, my family, Ian's brothers, and Ian, are driving up with the moving truck and all of our wedding gifts, to help unpack and change that little apartment into our home, with all the love and memories that are necessary.

I'll be back on Sunday to post pictures of our handy work and girl time...

until then

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

A Deep Breath... And Begin

I have had a blog for a long time now, but I decided it was time for a switch. On my old domain I had been receiving some interesting messages from some very not so interesting people. So, for the safety of my internet and for my piece of mind, I have switched over to blogger.

Also, I have several blogs that I read religiously on here, which leads to more link blog reading and can just go on forever--a way to fill up some of my not so productive days.

I'm not really sure how I got into blog reading beyond my friends' and my Xangas..... I believe I saw a link on facebook, clicked, and decided it was really interesting to be reading women's blogs who are older than me, have been through more, and are at a different stage of life. I like hearing their take on things, learning from them, and gaining wisdom from their experiences. I guess I hope that one day, my experiences will help others learn and grow as well.

But I have a lot to learn first.

So, I begin on that road of adulthood with an open mind and eager hands....

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

A New Beginning

10 [c] A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
11 Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
13 She selects wool and flax
and works with eager hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships,
bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still dark;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her servant girls.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.
18 She sees that her trading is profitable,
and her lamp does not go out at night.
19 In her hand she holds the distaff
and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
20 She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.
21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
22 She makes coverings for her bed;
she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is respected at the city gate,
where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
and supplies the merchants with sashes.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
27 She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29 "Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31 Give her the reward she has earned,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.