Tag Archives: church

Wrapping up 2014

15 Dec

Soccer finished on Saturday (thank goodness!) Josh usually has basketball games on Saturday morning, so I have all 5 kiddos by myself. Mackenzie and Bella play on one field, Deacon plays on a different field on the other side of campus. Caleb hangs out on the playground adjacent to Deacon’s field, and Sim thankfully stays put, just needing a cuddle and feeding from time to time.

Anyway, Deacon’s team came in dead last! However, he scored 5 goals during the season, so that was pretty exciting. Mackenzie and Bella’s teams both came in 5th, finishing the season on a win! The highlight of the season for me was watching the Beginners division finish a game with a shootout. I looked over and they were setting the 6-year old’s up for the shoot out. That alone took about 10 minutes. Then they took shots one at a time. The funniest part was that there was no goalkeeper, and they were kicking on a slightly downhill slope, and they STILL MISSED! It was so cute.

Here are a couple photos of Bella in action.

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We’ve been spending every spare moment with our besties, because they are going to the US for 7 months. =( I hate furloughs, except for our own, of course!


Because of our furlough schedules, my girls night regulars and I won’t be able to hang out all together for 2 and 1/2 more years! It’s so sad. I’ll be 37 when we go out again- yeesh.

Sunday was the Christmas program at church. It was a great service!! I wasn’t looking forward to sitting through two identical services, but it ended up being perfect because I could take pictures in one service and take video in the other!

Deacon was mid-“baa” in this photo.


Bella and her friend were both angels (who LOVED swishing their shiny, white robes around!)


The Mary’s. Mackenzie was Mary for one song, and her friend was Mary for another.




One of my friends tapped me on the shoulder and said, “That’s the tallest Mary I’ve ever seen!”


This big boy is into his 3-6 month wardrobe!


Therefore, Sim couldn’t pass for a newborn baby Jesus. Plus, the scriptures don’t mention corduroy overalls…



This is what Simeon looks like right now, sleeping next to me on the bed. I love the frog-leg position that babies naturally go to when they sleep! We work so hard as adults to be half this flexible…


Hot Season!

8 Apr

We’re a couple of weeks into basketball and all three of the older kids are playing! Josh is in charge of the entire kindergarten through 3rd grade (ish) group and the coach of Bella and Deacon’s team. Mackenzie is in the higher division and her games are on a different court, so Josh and I have to tag team, and have to miss the other’s games. Boo. But I guess we’d better get used to it, because it’s going to be the reality for the next several years!

They are all doing terrific! Bella scores a bucket or two every game, Deacon LOVES defense and gets a huge smile when he steals the ball. They are all cuter than an Easter basket full of brand-new fuzzy chicks!

Mackenzie had a career high 5 baskets in her last game! She’s got great shooting form in warm-ups, but rushes it a smidgen in games. I had to give her a Powerade incentive to be more aggressive on rebounding. She kept hanging out on the perimeter, waiting for any ball to drop into her hands. I said, “Kenz, you’re closer than anyone to the basket! You get first dibs on those rebounds!” So I told her that if she got a rebound and put it back up for a basket, I’d buy her a Powerade. Girlfriend did it the very next play! I, of course, had no money, and had to scrape together P50 to make good on my promise!



Josh wishes that he could coach her team, but he’s having fun with the littles. He’s really good with them too. He spends the first half teaching and then they play games.


In this drill, he just had them sprint from one end to the other a few times. He did it in the name of defense, but I think he was just trying to wear them all out to make Saturday afternoon naps a strong possibility.


After basketball, the kids and I headed out to the brand-new First Love Children’s Home! It is amazing and I’m so proud of our friends for doing such a great job getting it going. Here they are after the ribbon cutting with the girls who are already in their custody.


The stories that these girls come to the children’s home with are traumatic and devastating! I’ve heard some of their stories, but when I got to the ceremony and saw their precious faces, I couldn’t hold back my emotion! (Nothing surprising there for this preggo, though. I cry at everything these days. Don’t even put me in front of a military family reunion clip!)

Anyway, these girls are beautiful and precious and so loved by God! They’ve already come so far in their time at the children’s home (in a different location), and it’s so exciting to see what God has planned for them.

AND CHECK HIM OUT! He is their only little guy and he’s pretty perfect. I think Michele said that they’ve had him since he was 13 hours old! There were witnesses to the mother literally biting off his umbilical cord and leaving him on some steps. Horrific. But look at him now! He’s happy and healthy and well-loved. We all want ‘im!


It’s exciting to see our mission and friends being obedient to the Lord by caring for the fatherless. (James 1:27) It’s hard work and emotionally and physically exhausting, but so rewarding, both on earth and for sure in Heaven!

It was about 100 degrees out, hence the lack of grass on the ground! But that didn’t stop the kids from playing on the swing set and in the bahay kubo.


The next morning, we went to a different church. It is the church of one of Josh’s basketball ministry partners. Josh went and picked up the entire church in a bus and brought them to the local ministry center for church, fellowship, and swimming.

I just took these pics for my mom, who gave the girls these dresses when she was here.

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This is Tyson and he lives at the ministry center. He sat like this for almost the entire service, and it cracked me up.


Josh grabbed some Andoks chicken for the church and we all enjoyed some chicken and rice after swimming.


I don’t think you’re supposed to eat the rice like this, but when we get it at a fast food place, it comes wrapped up in a tight wrapper, so it’s easy to just unwrap and eat  like an apple!


Lastly, our big news is that Josh and I are FINALLY taking official Tagalog lessons! 3-hour classes twice a week. I’m finding that I know a ton of words, but putting them together in a sentence CORRECTLY is a game-changer. Example: I’ve always known that cockroaches are ipis. But now I can tell you that ipis pala ang mga iyon. (Oh, those (far, not near. That would be an entirely different word) are cockroaches.) There are so many weird rules and exceptions, which I’m sure is true of English as well.

I’ve memorized a list of particles that get added to enhance sentences. There can be as many as 6 particles in a sentence, and the order of which they are added comes in this hierarchy… na, pa, man, din/rin, nga, lang, daw/raw, po, ba, naman, yata, kaya, muna, sana, kasi, pala, na naman, tuloy. Say what?! It’s going to take me 15 minutes just to figure out which particles I want to use and to arrange them in the right way! Anyway, I still think it’s fun and I’m excited to be learning a new language!

The Last Day of School!

24 May

How can this school year already be over??? Didn’t I just drop Bella off for her first day of kindergarten??? I’ve been saying for the last few days, “This year has flown by!” It’s been a good one. The girls have done a great job at school this year and we’re oh-so-proud of them. They are going to miss their new friends, but are so excited to get back to their PI peeps!

We got a special caramel and M&M covered apple for their last day of school. I forgot to get a picture of it before we dug into it (for breakfast.) But I did take a photo before they finished it.


Here they are at the same spot on the FIRST day of school, however many months ago.


Flashbacking a few days….

Wednesday night was the last night of AWANA, so the kids got their certificates and a round of applause for all their hard work this year.

I know, so dark. I’m a horrible photographer! I can’t even label this work as photography. I’m a horrible picture-maker…and I don’t feel like editing, so I’m a lazy and horrible picture-maker.

Deacon got two little patches to add to his vest!


Bella got a special ribbon for completing her entire book!


Mackenzie got a special medal for completing her book, PLUS she came in 1st place for Scripture memory verses in her class. She got a $10 McDonalds gift card that she promptly spent on a happy meal and a pomegranate-blueberry smoothie. The girl has an incredible gift for memorization and we’re so proud of her!



Here’s a cute one. On our way out of church, the girls were doing, “1-2-3 weeeeeee!” with Caleb and he loved it! He was giggling so hard.



I know that we’re supposed to be wrapping up our travels, but we couldn’t resist another trip to AR this weekend! We always love our time there and our niece is turning 5, so it’s the perfect reason to go!


Mackenzie’s Baptism

30 Dec

A few months ago, Mackenzie expressed that she wanted to take the next step in her walk with the Lord and get baptized! We were thrilled and even more excited when she asked if her grandpa could do the dunking. The details worked out perfectly, down to the chapel resuming services in their building just last week, following the Sandy damage.

It was a wonderful moment for our family!



I was taking video with my camera, so Josh snapped those photos on his iPad. My mom and sis-in-law got some better quality shots, but until I transfer those, these will do.

Here is the video footage of the exciting event.

Afterwards, my sister and her family treated everybody to some Red Lobster goodness. It was a fantastic way to end a fantastic family week and a half!

This is what Heather calls an Oliver sandwich with a sweet cheek filling.


Eden is one half of the cutest twins in the world!


All these cousins are going to miss each other! Boo.


Everyone starts heading back to their homes tomorrow. Heather and her family fly out tomorrow, and the rest of us will head home on Tuesday. Of course, we won’t actually roll into KS until Wednesday, and then Josh heads to AR for a meeting on Thursday, and then flies to Australia on Friday! Whew.

Which shellfish rocks your world – lobster, crab, shrimp, prawns…?