Sunday, January 27, 2013

Saying Goodbye

My heart is a little heavy right now as it always is when goodbyes are involved. I figured I'd be a pro at this with as many times as I've had to bid farewell to people, but it never gets easier. Today I said goodbye to my dear friend, Joanne. I met Joanne 6 years ago at ACB and we, along with our other "BFFs" Anne & Vanessa, hit it off right away. Joanne will be heading to China for 6 months to teach English and then, most likely, will head back to England. While I know she will only be an EasyJet flight away, I'm still sad that she's not a tram ride from Starbucks.

Here's a pic of Vanessa, Jo, and me today before we said goodbye:

Friday, January 25, 2013

So Far

We started a new semester on Thursday. The kiddos finished finals on Wednesday and were thrown into a new schedule the next day. Despite a few weary faces and bloodshot eyes on Thursday, they made it through and as a reward for their hard work, no homework was given this weekend. As of right now before Add/Drop is over, I have 33 students in Choir! We started the first of five new songs today and they sound great.

I'm trying to manage my time and schedule better this semester than last. I have a lot due for a seminary course in March, but I also am busy every weekend up until the 2nd weekend in April. I've also been working out regularly with friends and starting to eat much healthier than before Christmas. However, tonight, with the closing of our local Asian restaurant-Asia Wok-I caved and ate noodles.

Friends have been abundant and I am always thankful that God puts the people in our lives that we need at exactly the time we need them.

A small request-my bank card from America has been frozen due to suspicious activity. My mom mailed the new card to me last week and I am waiting to get it soon because rent is due on Friday and I have to pull from my American account to put money into my German account. Please pray that the card arrives by Monday, as there are other expenses that need to be paid for.

Tomorrow is a full day so I'll say good-night for now.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

...and We're Back!

This was our first week back to school after a 3 week break. It was SO good to see the kiddos and it just made me realize how much I missed them and also how much I love doing what I do. It's been a busy week because finals for them are coming up before we begin 2nd semester. I was extremely proud of my Choir kiddos for learning a song in 4 days! We might be performing it at this week's Tuesday recital!

Elizabeth and I had our first small group of the new year and it was so great to see our girls again! We celebrated two of their birthdays and spent the time talking about Christmas Break. I mean it when I say that these girls have truly been an answer to prayer and are the highlight of my week :)

It was also my first rehearsal with my Middle School play kiddos and I was beyond proud of them for memorizing their lines over break! We have nearly blocked Act 1, Scene 1 and it was just the first day!

This coming semester promises to be even busier than last. I would really appreciate prayers for my new choir members coming in, the Middle School play in March, Honors Choir in Budapest, and our M-Trip to Central Asia. I'm also working on a class for seminary, so needless to say -- life is BUSY.

Here's a picture below of some of the students on the first day back:

Monday, January 7, 2013

Thursday, January 3, 2013

They're Just Groceries

As a missionary, I find myself always thinking about how I couldn't do the simplest tasks without YOU. Yes, YOU, if you are reading this, praying for me, financially partnering with me, etc...groceries wouldn't even be possible.

You may think, "they're just groceries..." but they're so much more than that.

On my recent trip to the grocery store -called Lidl (that is the name of the grocery store, not the name for grocery stores in German just so we're clear ;))- I was making selections for some new recipes I'm trying out. One being an egg, feta, broccoli, & chili pepper omelet that I just devoured (it was yum). As I headed for the cash register, I began to think about how many of you are helping me do this. You're helping me with the eggs, the broccoli, the feta, the coffee, the turkey meat, etc..This is what your prayers and financial support helps me with.

Something as simple as groceries.

I just wanted you to know how incredibly much I appreciate it and am blessed by it.

So thank you :)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

In the Last Week...

Ok, where do I begin? My apologies that I haven't updated since Christmas Eve. But if you know me, you know that I've been busy..yes, even on my Christmas Break!

So, I'll try to squeeze in as much as I can with a few pictures and try not to take up a four page blog.

Christmas Eve was spent having Christmas dinner with the Read family. The Reads are one family I've adopted as my "second family" over here in Germany. I've been blessed to sit under Geoff's preaching at ACB all three times I've lived in Europe. We had a homemade curry dinner and then opened presents. Marie-Louise made me a scarf that I have worn almost every day since receiving it. I don't think I've ever had a handmade scarf and so it is something I really treasure.

After presents were opened, we left for the Christmas Eve service at ACB. It started at 11:30pm, which I really liked because it meant we didn't have to rush around all afternoon (or at least I didn't) getting ready for it. We got there in time for Marie-Louise, Becky, Katya, & me to sing in the choir with the Hunklers (another family I've adopted as my own). This was quite the experience, but a fun experience nonetheless. After the service ended, we took this awesome pic of me with the Hunkler and Read girls:

I spent Christmas Eve night with the Hunklers and we slept in late and then opened presents together. My mother sent over my stocking with a few other items for my Christmas. This was the loot I got on Christmas Day:

I made it to Kandern later that afternoon where a Mexican fiesta Christmas Dinner was being prepared at CB & Erin's house. Everything was delicious and afterwards we lounged around and watched The Family Stone.

I went out to Ramlinsburg, Switzerland, where I used to Au Pair and had a mini-retreat for myself. It was nice to just relax and read a few books. On New Years Eve night, we all met up in Basel for dinner at Picobello, an Italian restaurant on the Rhein. We then went up to the Munsterplatz and counted down the New Year, then watched the city light up with fireworks. It was one of the best New Years I've had! Especially because I've always wanted to spend New Years Eve in Basel :)

Yes, it was a little odd being away from my family this year, but I am so blessed by the people God has strategically placed in my life, especially during the holiday season. May you all have a blessed and wonderful 2013.