Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Our Town

Here are a few of the sights from town, just to give you an idea of where we live. There is much more to see, but we haven't taken all the pics yet. Can't wait to show you around!
The view from a park down our street
One of the churches in town

A building on our walk to town

Part of the Center of town. There was a bike race that day to raise money for a charity. It was fun to watch!

Our Sunday walk to town. Every Sunday after church and after Jack's nap we stroll to town for some gelato and just to get out and enjoy the beuatiful weather. I love fall! We are so thankful to be here this time of year. We are walking alongside the citadel or old fortress.

Loving Soccer

Soccer is the game of champions here. Jeff has been to a "pro" soccer game with some of the boys in town. Many of our kids love playing soccer and are on pretty competitive teams. Jeff went to take a few pictures of them at practice. I'm sure we will grow to love the sport as much as they do!

Happy Birthday Bella and Anna!

Since we've been here we have celebrated Bella and Anna's brithday. We enjoyed a dance party after cake and cokes. The house cook makes delicious cakes...what a treat!

We are here in ROMANIA!!

Yes, we are here safe and sound. In 3 weeks since we arrived, we have even left the country! More on that later. Here are a few pictures from our first week. Mostly we ran around town, getting groceries, playing with the kids, unpacking, and getting paperwork together. In Romania, there is always a ton of paperwork and no such thing as "one-stop shopping!" We will write more on the specific adventures we've had, but here are a few pics in case you aren't getting our enewsletter. If you want more info, please feel free to let me know and I'll add you to our list. Much love! J3
The plane ride over the ocean...10 hours...1 hour of sleep!
At Kelly's send off party, we enjoyed the favorite Romanian dish, Sarmoli. Yummm!

Jack and Eni. They love him and he adores them!Nothing like inheriting a bunch of siblings!!
Our sweet friend Kelly left to return to the states just days after we arrive. We miss her so much but are thankful to be living in her old home and that we got to be here for a little bit with here. She will be back in November and we can't wait!

These are the kids we will be spending the most time with. They live in Casa Rebeca and Casa Ana Nadia. What a fun week!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

We set a date!

We have a date and tickets! On September 8th we will be on our way to Targu Mures, Romania to work with our kids at Livada Orphan Care. After 18 months of praying, planning, reading, studying, packing, traveling, speaking at family and church groups, and much, much more...we are almost really to go!
It seems like it just all started to come together within the last month or two. It has been so incredible to see how the Lord provided...and continues to provide..for our every need - from a family to rent our home, most of our funding, cheap airfare, time with family - all of it lined up in His perfect timing. Although we are still in the process of raising the rest of our financial support, He has guided our every step, daily reminds us that He is in control, and to give our fears, worries and burdens over to Him. So...that's what we do, pray about everything, trust in Him and remind ourselves that if he can part a sea, He can help us with all of the little things and calm our nerves!

This last week has been filled with lots of bitter sweet moments where we had said the words, as my sweet sister-in-law says..."see ya later!" Last weekend we spent time with our lifelong life group friends and ended it all on Sunday with a church prayer send-off and party. It was incredibly hard to say "see ya later" to those friends who we talk to on a daily basis about our kids, our lives, our struggles, our joys, and our prayers. We love them each so much and were so blown away by their support, love, encouragement, and effort they poured into making this weekend so memorable. Many of us search a lifetime for friends who know us, and love us in spite of us, who we connect and are just plain real with. We know that we found it within our life group. We praise God that we have them as our iron to sharpen our iron! To remind us of who we are and desire to be. We wouldn't be here without them!
As we sit in my parents home...that looks like a bomb blew up due to all of the luggage and last minute stuff that needs to be calls to be made...emails to be sent...papers to be to sell...boxes to be stored...meals to share...errands to lists to be completed...flu shots to be given(or rather received:)...clothes to wash...mail to to sort...and most of all sweet pockets of time with the ones we love so dearly and will miss so terribly much.
We knew that following the call of the Lord is never easy nor does He tell us it will be without cost...but when it comes time to actually get on that plane it will be quite a loss for all of us. Not because we don't realize the great opportunites that lie ahead of us to grow God's kindgom and love on others...but for the times we will not have in the way we know now with those we love.
Our patterns will change, our ways of calling will change, our ways of giving hugs will change, our ways of just sharing life will change. Change is never easy. Change is especially hard when its new and unfamiliar. But, we know that God call us to be a people who learn, grow, and change for Him. That it is a greater loss to deny Him and serve ourselves. So...although great change is ahead of us...and not the government kind...but the kind that calls us to be better for it. I pray that I, my beloved husband and sweet son, and all of our precious families and friends can cling to His promises and know that our changes will be okay until we can "see ya later..."

Jack's Birthday!

This really should be the final picture...but it makes me laugh! He loved all of the generous gifts...but loved the water bottle the most! So typical:)
Singing Happy Birthday with one to grow on!

Life group friends who shared in Jack's big day. Of course we didn't get a group picture of the wonderful family we had that joined us...we love you all!

Our family Birthday photo. We love you sweet Jack. You are my angel-bear and the light of my life. I cherish every moment with you and anticipate the many, many more to come. You are a delight and I am very blessed to be your mommy!

I know this is a long awaited update - but it's been a bit crazy this last month! Jack turned 1 on July 30th!! I just can't believe my sweet baby boy is 1!! We celebrated the morning with his cousin Hannah with a birthday cereal bar and then drove him to spend the day with his Yaya and Granddaddy while we shared the last night of a church VBS. He loved his cupcake and ice cream with his grandparents! Then on Saturday we all celebrated together with family and church friends. The theme was fire of Jack's favorite things to play with. It was a very, very special day. Jack was a bit overwhelmed by his crowd of birthday singers, but loved the icing on his fire engine cake! Thank you sweet life groups friends and family for making the day so great!