Friday, January 30, 2009

Clean Up begins

We are home and the clean up has begun. The guys are making huge progress. We have about 8 or 9 guys working between our house and the neighbors. You can actually see the ground again.

At some point I will post pictures. It was easier to come home today knowing that we were going to be staying and that progress could begin. The only way to move past this is to move forward so that is what we are doing. There have been a lot of tears shed and we know that there is a lot of work to do but we are are so blessed.

Please pray for safety as our community tries to clean up and get back to "normal."

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Staying warm.

We made a trip back home yesterday. We needed to get more clothes and items since we will be staying with Amber longer then we thought. Obviously we are still without power and not sure when it will be back on. There is rumor that maybe Saturday by midnight.

In some ways I am ready to go home but at the same time I am overwhelmed by the site of everything. It makes us physically ill to drive down our road. A palce that use to be serene and peacefull looks like a war zone. I have been in several tornados and had not experienced such destruction until now.

I am glad we left. It was so cold in our house. By the time James and I left my nose was running and I was starting to cough. There is no way the kids could have stayed. I am so thankful that Amber opened up her home to us.

I am trying to cancel kayla's birthday party. I am disapointed that we have to keep pushing it back so far. She is very understanding though.

I will try to post more later. For now we are doing very well just have a loft of cleanup ahead of us.

We hope this finds the rest of you safe and warm.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Dropping Like Flies.

This is the first time since our little man came home that the entire family has been affected by sickness at the same time. It started when Noah threw up in his bed Thursday night. We had no idea that he had thrown up and he did not make any noise during the night. Of course I felt horrible and thought what if he did cry and I didn't hear him. I just wish I would have known so that I could have comforted him and cleaned him up. Friday he said "mommy I sorry I coughed in my bed." I explained to him that he had thrown up and that I was not upset just worried about him. He had to miss his play day at the gym so he thought he was in trouble. I tried over and over to explain to him that he was not naughty but that when you are sick you have to stay home so you do not get your friends sick.

Saturday night it hit Kayla and by Sunday afternoon mom was down. Dad is home sick with it today. The good news is only one person at a time has actually been throwing up. We have managed to space it out just right. By the time the next person gets it the previous person is past the worst part and can help hold down the fort. I am so ready for this to be over.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

While I was typing my post on Hog Noses my sister called very upset. My first thought was that she was still really upset about the move. (We both cried most of the night)

Instead she was calling to tell me that their pastor's daughter was just killed in a car accident. Please pray for this family. I fell it is best to not mention any names as they have not been able to notify all the family. They do have two other children and one child has not been notified yet. Please pray for this precious family. Also please pray for my sister and her family as they are very close to them. Kayla has spent a great deal of time with their children while visiting my sister. The mother taught Kayla's age group and one of her daughters is Kayla's age. The family has always been so good to my kids while they were visiting. They made sure that they were welcome and plugged in even though they were only there for short periods of time.

There so many hurting in the world around us. Our hearts and prayers go out to those who are grieving and those who are facing medical trials. May God continue to comfort the brokenhearted and may He place His healing hand on those that need healing.

God is Bigger Than Hog Noses!

"Arkansas Survival Kit"

I know some must be thinking that some how the title to this post is sacrilegious. It is just my way of trying to acknowledge that God's ways are not my ways.

First I must explain the picture that is featured in this post. In December my sister called to inform me that there was a promising chance that their family would be transferred to Little Rock in August. It was not set in stone but it looked very promising. When they told their two boys they respond with the statement "but there are so many germs there!" Why would they say such a thing? Because every time they visit us they get sick. Really really sick! It is also a fact that when we visit them our kids end up sick, really really sick. In return we get them sick. So why the picture? Well they joked about sending us a Christmas card that said they are ready for us ( we were visiting them for Christmas) and in the card they were going to wear mask and gloves. So when we heard that they may be moving to Little Rock we decided to make them an Arkansas survival kit. The kit included hand sanitizer, mask, gloves and of course a hog nose. My sister was the only one who knew that we were doing this. It was a huge hit and we all had a big laugh. It also made for a great family photo.

We have been anxiously awaiting the big news on his new assignment. It was revealed yesterday that they will not be moving to Little Rock. The worse part is that they will be moving to Washington. What use to be a 6 hour drive for us to see them will now be a four day drive. Needless to say we are both heartbroken. They will finish their last assignment in Washington (4 years) so we will miss the boys High School years and it will be very expensive and difficult to make it for their graduations. Our little Noah will be heartbroken too when he realizes that he can not just go to Aunt April's house on a whim. He kinda got attached to her and Penny (their puppy) when they stayed with her for 17 days while we were in Thailand.

We both know that God's plan for their family is more important than the plans we made for living just 3 hours apart. We knew that it was not a done deal but we had both hoped and prayed that it might be that way. So for now I am so thankful for the past 4 years that God allowed us to live so close. We have managed with this much distance between us before and we will manage again, but I will miss having her so close.

I love you sis! I just hope our guys know that we will be trying to fit in as mush time as we can before the actual move. I still see scrap booking in our future!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

So Many Emotions

~17 days on the Indian Ocean half way around the world~
~This was the view from our room!~

I am so far behind on posting that I do not even know where to begin. I always have the best intentions but you know what they so about intentions.

We had a great time with family over the holidays. We were able to see all of our family except my brother and his family. Pretty bummed that we were not able to see him. We traveled to LA to spend Christmas with my older sis, younger sis and my parents. I was able to see one of my nephews for the first time and he is 5 years old. My younger sister met Noah for the first time. It was great to spend time with all the cousins and family. James' parents and his sister drove in from Colorado a few days after we returned form LA. While they were here visiting we renovated our master bath. I'm sure that there would have been a more logical time to accomplish this but it is the only time that James has that much time off to devote to a project. Our bathroom has been in the mist of repairs since it flooded when Kayla was in the second grade. Yes she is now in 7th grade. We simply have had other things that were more in need of our time and money. If I could find my camera I would post some during and after photos.

We are back at school again. We managed to stay on track pretty well. The chores seem to suffer more when we are schooling. Noah plays well but after I spend time teaching I feel so guilty cleaning house when I should be playing with him. Either way I feel like some thing or some one is being neglected.

Tonight we had an amazing time of worship and fellowship at church. Our youth pastor and his family will be leaving in a week to serve on international soil. We are so excited for them as they begin this new journey but they will be greatly missed. Tonight when we told Noah it was time to leave he asked where we were going. We told him that we were going to church to say goodbye to his little friend B. Noah asked us were B was going and we told him he was moving. We also told him were B was moving to. He looked at us and said "That's a bummer!" The only response to that was "it's a good bummer." We are so excited for this family because we know what is in store for them but we will miss them so much. Their family has been such a blessing to our church and the youth are so sad to see them go.

Another reason that tonight is filled with so many emotions is that we had the opportunity to work along side this family in Thailand. Our hearts and minds are already stirred as we approach the one year anniversary of our trip. Many of the songs that we sang tonight were the ones that we sang on our trip. One in particular moves us to tears every time we hear the words or tune. Tonight was a sweet reminder of all our new friends that we made a year ago, yet it is a sad reminder that we may never have that opportunity again. Our experience in Thailand was probably one of the most difficult things that we have ever done physically but it was so rewarding. If asked I do believe that I would get on that plane and make the 25+ hour flight and do it all over again. I would endure the smells, the uncleanliness, very late luggage, the mold, the bacteria, the foreign foods, no diet coke, the language barrier, lack of sleep, jet lag and any of the foreign sights and customs so that we could once again work with our new friends and join them in their cause. It was an honor and a pleasure to work with them. We miss them so much and continue to remember them and lift them up.

We still wish that we were able to share so much more with each of you. For now this will have to do. I am still considering a 17 day pineapple fast in remembrance of our trip. (for those who missed a previous post that was about the only thing that I ate while I was there.)

Our hearts are stirred and will continue to be stirred. We are hopeful that we will be able to work alongside some of theses fine folks again some day but until then we are so grateful that we had this opportunity.