Friday, June 30, 2006

Happy Father's Day!!!!?

I was so excited to celebrate Father's Day today... had all the plans taken care (or so I thought) and was really hoping to surprise Mike. I hadn't mentioned anything and was going to meet him at work with everything we'd need for the evening and wisk him away. LOL

Then yesterday came and as we were talking about our weekend plans... he's convinced that something was going on Friday night. So the surprise ended as I had to make sure we didn't have anything else planned and let him know to keep it that way.

Still being very excited about the day... I woke up with a list of things to accomplish. Isabella had other plans... again. Nothing major, she was just clingy which made it take twice as long to accomplish one thing. Don't know what's going on with her these past few days. She only wants 'Mama' (which don't get me wrong makes me feel great) but a mama needs a break too.

I strike out on task #1... printing. I don't know what it is about me but I seem to break every possible electronic device in this house! lol Our printer will not work with my computer and it's too late to run to the photo shop so Mike's first gift is delayed a day.

Mike is able to come home a tad early and I'm pumped because the first thing on my list for the evening is some father/daughter pictures and it was a pretty day out. So we head to where we are to have dinner and spend about an hour playing around with some photos. I'm happy with how most turned out but I didn't get close enough and there are still a few I want to take but they need to be done inside.

On our way to the restaurant, I discover the name is not what we thought it was and began to panic. See Mike's FAVORITE food is Peking Duck and I SO BADLY wanted to treat him to this meal. I choose this place because I ate duck there a few weeks ago and it was incredible and I wanted him to have the best. But alas... strike two. This is not the same place and they only served seafood. What to do, what to do... By the time we got to another place that we knew served duck Isabella would be incredibly cranky and ready for bed so we decide to walk to Sha Tin and eat at Ruby Tuesday's.

Strike three... (well almost) Now for those of you that know HK, we were in City One probably even further down at the floating restaurant. It was how hot today? and we were NOT prepared for a walk. We started our journey across the river and about half way there we both thought... this is much further than we thought. We were soaked with sweat and our feet were killing us! But I must admit it was a very pleasant, pretty walk.

So we ate at Ruby Tuesday's and pick up a birthday gift for a party we're going to tomorrow and head home. We decide to take first class because our feet hurt and we're tired... strike four (almost again) we pay for first class only to have to stand! (first class is nice comfortable, roomy seats) Thankfully it was only for one stop.

We end Father's Day on a be continued note until we can get that duck and Mike can receive all his gifts. Ahhh.... foiled again. I don't know what I can't seem to manage a successful surprise for him but I hope he still knows how much I love him. He's a GREAT Daddy and a wonderful husband.

We did share some wonderful conversation about life, ministry and our future. It's always fun to 'dream' with him and fun to talk (albeit briefly... lol) about adoption.

I love you babe!
~Happy Father's Day~

This is my ABSOLUTE favorite! Mike does this with her all the time and she just loves it but this is the clearest photo I've ever been able to take.

Isabella wasn't as happy as she normally is because of her lack of sleep over the past few days but I adore this photo too. Just my guy and sweetie pie.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Joy is up to YOU

Good-byes STINK!

I just don't like saying them... never have. Even when I lived just 1 1/2hrs from my parents in WV, I hated saying good-bye. Today was filled with them and that never makes for a spectacular day.

Sarah and John left this afternoon.

That was hard... they're our family, a taste of our home in MN, and it was so fun to relax and goof around with them. We just haven't connected with our students here like we did in MN and it so wonderful to have them visit. Thanks Pat and Arlin for letting them come! We will miss them and Izzy won't know what to do tomorow morning when she wakes up. (please make sure they email us to let us know they've arrived)

Izzy giving Sarah hugs

hugs for John

This evening Steve, Amy and Kinely joined us for one last dinner. They leave Friday for Canada. I think we would have spent a lot of time with them if they had stayed but alas... this is HK. The girls really played together tonight. Pushed each other around on Izzy's bike, played with the shopping cart, and Isabella just followed Kinely around. There were a few accidents, a few spills of which one left Isabella with a chipped tooth (Mommy's still dealing with this) but they seemed to have a great time and left with hugs.

I know this is an awful picture but you can see the love in all the blurriness and it just touches my heart and makes me smile.

I knew these good-byes were coming and we still have a few more to go. I knew HK would be like this because it's such a transient culture. No one seems to consider HK 'home' and therefore it seems very few actually stay here for very long. I just never expected it to be so hard. I mean... we haven't known these people for very long... not even a full year. But yet somehow we connected and developed a relationship. Maybe it's because we're all far from our families, home countries, and are trying to make it in a foreign culture. Maybe it's because we're all Christ followers and have that connection of faith; though I'm sad to say that I have not connected in this way with all Christ followers. Maybe we all just understand what it's like to feel 'out of place' and therefore have just welcomed everyone with open arms. I don't know but it's been great and we've been blessed.

We've said our good-byes but we still have our memories and we can carry those with us forever. We just have to be grateful and thankful that God has allowed these things to happen. We can always find joy in situations when we have God in our lives.

On a much happier note.....
Guess what's coming July 4th!!!!!!

Sweet Dreams Shoppe
(the home of Emily and Angela Powers Digi-Scrapping Designs)

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

I'm baaack!

Wow... what a few days it has been.

So Friday started out well, John and Sarah headed off to Crossroads,

Mike off to work and well Izzy and I had our own plans of playing at the park. Instead, we ended up meeting Mike and Brian for one last lunch together. It was fun and am so glad we did but I felt like an intruder a bit... I wanted he and Mike to have one last personal conversation but we didn't know that Brian had a pretty long list of people to see and so our time was limited more than we thought. Anway...

The evening turned into a disaster. Everyone but Izzy and I, headed to a concert and almost the second they left, I began to feel awful. I ended up putting Isabella to bed around 7pm and for the next 4/5hrs or so, I spent in the bathroom. In fact, I pulled out a pillow and blanket and just laid on the floor. It was awful. I caught Mike's bug and just as badly.

That darn bug put such a damper on the next three days for me. Saturday we all were to go cliff diving but obviously I couldn't. What stunk even more was how gorgeous it was outside and I didn't even have the ability to take Isabella out. I slept the ENTIRE day and thankfully Becky was able to come babysit while Mike attended RJ's graduation. Our first 'youth' babysitter here. However, Sarah and John had a great time and their pictures prove it!

Sunday I managed to attend our worship service but came home immediately after and pretty much just laid around. I thought I was getting better until we got ready to leave for dinner. I walked to the lift and then returned to the couch. I missed the 'Peak' that night and again... they've got gorgeous pictures of HK at night.

I woke up Monday morning knowing there was something more than this 'bug' going on with me. In MN, I suffered from Gastroenteritis and it's not something you forget. That's how I knew that it had hit me again. I'm sure it was due to all the vomiting on Friday night but man... can I say painful? It's like someone's stabbing you in the stomach over and over and over again. I'm so thankful that God provided us with such a wonderful Dr because she didn't hesitate to give me the meds I needed. (When this happened in MN, I knew what was wrong but it took them about 4days to give me the right stuff) She's so cute too... she told me to take sick leave, nap as much as possible, take these meds, and go on a two day BRAT (bananas, rice, applesauce and toast) diet. She said if I did that, I'd be better in two days. To myself I thought, "Great... just in time to say good bye to our guests." However, God is good and within one day, I feel almost 100% better! I did miss out on a trip to Stanley but Mike brought home some very cute clothes for Isabella so all was good. LOL

Other than not sleeping well (thanks Izzy), I woke up feeling pretty great and have continued to improve throughout the day. Good enough to go back to the night and jade market for some last minute shopping. I even walked away with some new bracelets and a new pair of shoes... all for less than 10$! Ahhh... bargaining has really grown on me and I must admit, I've gotten pretty good at it. LOL

So that's why the past few days have left me speechless. I'm so grateful this too has passed and I pray that it NEVER returns. Our whole family suffered and I think it took a toll on our emotions too because we were getting a little edgy with each other. lol

So this post isn't profound but it will help me to remember what we did the past few days and will help me to get back on track with my journaling. I will finish with one last thing... our flat. It seems that we will not be moving. It's a long story and one that stills hurts a bit to share but God knows all that's going on and has a PERFECT plan. I can never doubt that so with this disappointing news, I take a positive attitude and look at the bright side. There are a few things Mike and I have decided to do to spruce up our flat and make it 'homier (is that even a word?)' and more spacious {and yeah we still get a dryer}. So watch out Macau... here we come!

okay... so I got tired of waiting for blogger to upload my photos so enjoy the ones I had enough patience for lol

Oh yeah... one more thing
look to the right for my newest blinkie....

coming soon... aren't you excited!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

What a day...

I've known this all along but it really hit me today that once you become a mom.... you're life does not revolve around you. You cannot be selfish and you always have to be thinking about someone else. I guess that's how we should always live... putting others first but as a mother it hits you even harder. Today I woke up with a few plans... swimming, look at a flat, grocery shopping, guests coming over for dinner, the list goes on. However, Isabella woke up with other plans. Actually her plans didn't start until afternoon nap but anyway....

She woke up and something was obviously wrong. If you know her at all... she's one ACTIVE child. I've been told that she's busier than the boys, busy as a bee, etc... But today she just laid on the couch.... STILL as could be. I have never seen her this calm and passive. She wasn't hungry, wasn't thirsty, nothing. All she wanted was to either lay down or be held. I didn't think too much of it because I thought I woke her up and she was just still tired. So we got dressed and met Mike to see one more flat. On the way there... (if you get grossed out easily you may want to skip this part) I heard a cough and looked over at her to see fluids flying from her mouth. It was the saddest thing I think I have ever seen. Once she stopped she got the biggest frown and just started crying in pain. I was almost in tears having to see her so miserable. I did the best I could to clean up but poor Mike suffered the brunt of it. He was soaked, smelly and had to stay that way for the next hour.

I got home as soon as possible, cancelled our dinner plans and headed off to see Dr. Kelly. Pretty much the same thing Mike suffered from last weekend and there's nothing we can do but make sure she stays hydrated and once again they gave her three more medicines (they don't have an all in one type thing here... one thing for cough, one for runny nose, one for vomiting, etc). My heart just aches for her. She was more active in the evening and stopped throwing up but then it came from the other end. Poor girl is already suffering from a bad diaper rash. Ahhh.... please pray for my baby!

So anyway.... other than our trip to see the flat, none of my plans were accomplished! That's okay though... she's way more important than anything else. But it just made me think how much my life has changed since having her. I always have to think about how this or that will effect her and what is best for her. But this has been such a good reminder for me to put others first and that plans are never more important than people.

So maybe today... try to put someone in your life before your plans. Let them know how much you love them.


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Routine has returned

I don't have much to share today... Sarah and John spent the majority of their day with RBC ministries and Mike is doing much better and went back to work today so Isabella and I were by ourselves. So during some nap time I managed to finish up some lo's. Here are two....

This is my fav LO so far... I don't know why but I just love it!
Andrea Burns Blue Nile-Michelle Coleman Swirls-Jen Wilson Summer Travels

Emily Powers For Her-Weekend Kit

I spent a good bit of the day cleaning... our flat was a bit smelly and thanks to Isabella insisting on feeding herself... quite dirty. And Isabella spent a good bit of the day playing on our couch that pulls out into a bed. (I pulled it out... I'm always looking for new things for her to explore and she seemed to really enjoy herself.) After her afternoon nap, we picked up her medicine and went to the park for awhile. Mike took John, Sarah and Isabella to Toys R' Us this evening to pick up a few things and give me a little 'me' time. I was very grateful because I become very stressed and a bit irritable if I don't get any time to myself. He came home with a saxophone and ball for Izzy! I had to give him a hard time because we just got done discussing how many things she has that we don't have room for but he said he just couldn't resist... he HAD to get the saxophone (I play the sax) and if he was going to encourage music he was also going to encourage sports and therefore bought the ball. You just gotta love him!

Tomorrow we're alone again and I'm hoping to hit the pool but in the evening we are going to a dumpling party. Should be tons of fun and incredible eating. LOL

So Sarah showed me a few YouTube videos and this one (see previous post) just absolutely cracks me up. Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
MAtrix Ping Pong

Monday, June 19, 2006


Waking up to a thunderstorm warning is not what I envisioned but no worries... we still explored and shopped. LOL I took John and Sarah (poor Mike still needed to rest) to the Kowloon City Market and then to the Kowloon Walled City. This market is mainly clothes and shoes and I love it because I can always find something there and it has great clothing for children. I managed to pick up a Puma shirt (for like 5$!), a sleeper for Izzy and a little treat for a friend who's expecting in Oct. John and Sarah had luck too which made me enjoy the trip even more. I always get bummed when Mike and I go and I find stuff and he doesn't.

Then we headed over to the Walled City and it was incredible. I had never been there before and was just amazed at the beauty and story behind it. Here's a brief summary of what took place...

And here are some fun pictures we took while we explored.

This was our last Monday night dinner with Brian; he returns to Texas at the end of the week. It was bittersweet for us. We're really excited for him to be able to go to seminary but we really have enjoyed spending time with him and getting to know him over this past year. When I was explaining how our 'Monday night dinners' came about to John and Sarah, I realized that it's been since at least Oct if not earlier that Brian has been coming over. It's been a fun tradition and one that we hope we can continue with another single guy here in HK. Here are some pictures of Brian, Mike and Isabella. (well the first is part of the Kowloon Walled City)

Tomorrow, Sarah and John will go and work with RBC ministries (aka The Daily Bread) and Wed-Fri, they will work with Crossroads... a very unique ministry that provides furniture and appliances to people and countries that cannot afford it. I'm hoping to spend some time with Amy and Kinley before they return to Canada and get a few workouts in. Oh yeah... I made 21 days without soda! I was so proud AND I haven't returned to my old habits! Hip hip hooray! Now I'm thinking of another habit to break... I think I'm going to do sweets but I will wait a few more days so that 21 days will end the day before my birthday! LOL Then I can treat myself to something sweet for my birthday.

I have some thoughts about the current book I'm reading but they're not coming together quick enough to post them here. I will leave you with a quote and question to get your brain thinking though...

Are you experiencing true transformation or pseudo-transformation (where you think you are transforming but in fact becoming more judgemental and smug) in your spiritual walk with Christ?

The pursuit of righteousness is always an exhausting pursuit when it seeks distorted goals. ~John Ortberg

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Junk Boat

Here are some pictures from Thursday... John on the Avenue of the Stars standing next to Bruce Lee and Sarah trying on some glasses at the night market.

First I need to ask prayer for Mike... he's come down with something that has left him laying on the couch and missing out on all the fun. He's doing better today but not 100% which means he'll miss out again tomorrow. Please pray for quick healing. I decided to pretend today was just another day and that next Sunday is Father's Day. That way he can fully enjoy it and hopefully his gift will be in.

Yesterday we were invited by Stewart to join him and some friends to see HK in style. It was awesome. We met him around 1:30 for a junk boat ride around the islands and for some wake boarding, tubing and swimming. Oh yeah... and dinner at the famous floating restaurant. It was so great and so much fun. Poor Mike wasn't able to join us but it was good that the rest of us were able to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather. I attempted tubing for the first time and unfortunately have some sorry looking knees to prove it. LOL John and Sarah attempted wake boarding and we all enjoyed speed boat rides.. in fact it was just the trick to put Isabella to sleep. He treated us to dinner at the famous floating restaurant called Jumbo and the food was just delicious. We had fresh shrimp, Peking duck (again... poor Mike, it's his favourite), chicken, etc. And Stewart was thoughtful enough to have the driver drop us off at the closest ferry pier so that we didn't have a long journey home.

Isabella preparing for her speed boat ride. The restuarant where we had dinner and a view on the way back.

Today John and Sarah led worship and I so wish I had pictures to share but my CC teacher was a tad late and I missed them. Bummer... but I heard great things and have no doubt they did a fabulous job. It was our farewell Sunday for Pastor Rod, Salving, and RJ and Pastor Rod was supposed to preach but he had no voice. I was bummed because I've never heard him preach but I'm hoping I may still have a chance. He will continue to minister at AIC until the end of the month. I experienced something new for the first time at church... Interpretative dance. I was really surprised at how cool it was. They danced to 'Here I am to Worship' and their dance moves so fit the words it was incredible. I was so glad that I got to see that but again... didn't have my camera to catch it on film. We had an incredible buffet during our fellowship time and ended up coming home early because Isabella was just exhausted. She has never fallen asleep before 3pm on a Sunday afternoon and she was out almost immediately after picking her up from the nursery. I think she's just had some very busy days and it all caught up to her because she took an amazing afternoon nap too. We've been pretty much just relaxing the rest of the day. Sunday's I rarely have energy to do anything and I was grateful that Sarah and John were willing to just chill at our place. Tomorrow we will explore some more so it's good to get rested up. And they will begin more of their ministries on Tuesday.

Giving Pastor Rod and Salving a plaque for their ministry here. Children's Church.

I should share more but I need to get to bed as I know tomorrow will be a fun, long, and HOT day. Praise the Lord the rain has gone away for a bit but now the squelching heat and humidty have arrived.

Sorry the pictures are small but it's the only way they would upload. I think you can click on them to make them bigger.

Friday, June 16, 2006

What have we done....

Welcome John and Sarah!

Our first dinner at Ruby Tuesday's

We've had a great and busy few days. Yesterday morning, John and Sarah woke up ready to explore so we went to TST with Mike while he ran some errands. We introduced them to XTC on Ice and our 'Sunday walk.' We came home and rested a bit and in the evening went to the night market. This was Mike and I's first time to this market and I must say... that I WILL return there. I LOVED it! It was so much better (at least for finding Chinese items) than Stanley at least in my opinion. For dinner we had a Chinese meal of dumplings and bok choy... one of my favorites! I hope they enjoyed it too. Today they helped me clean (hard core clean) the Children's Church room and I'm so very grateful. The air con is broken in that room and the dehumidifier has to be manually emptied so mold grows very quickly. We came home and enjoyed a nice swim in the pool before heading out to CAIS for youthgroup. We have a big day tomorrow so I didn't stay... just dropped them off but it sounds like they had a good time.

I have thoroughly enjoyed talking about HK and it's been fun to realize how much I have learned about this place and the people. They really did their homework on the city and I've been so impressed with the interest they have shared in HK and our ministry here. I also have really appreciated the help they have given me with Isabella. I feel so energized because I'm not having to entertain her by myself all day. Isabella sure is enjoying them too. She won't know what to do when it's just her and me again. LOL

There's been a bit of a hault on the flat hunt... again. But I just keep reminding myself that God is in control and will let us know exactly when He wants too. I just wish it was now.

Sleeping arrangements have been going well and it's actually been quite fun having Izzy in our room. I've always enjoyed taking one last peek at her before I go to bed and having her right next to us makes that so much easier. Here's a picture of something she discovered on Tuesday.. climbing into one of the drawers on the bottom of our bed and resting on the towels. We probably played for about 30 minutes... climbing in and out, throwing the towels out and putting them back in. I'm glad she's easy to entertain.

My brain is fried... can't think of what else I wanted to share so I guess that means it's time to go to bed. Hope you all have a wonderful, exciting day!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


Welcome John and Sarah! It was so great to see them walk through the welcome hall and give them a hug. We kept them very busy this evening in hopes that they will be able to sleep and poor things were so exhausted. I know how it is... we already introduced them to the Airport Express, KCR, mini-bus, Taxi, crowds, flat hunting, and taught them a few Cantonese words. Yikes... I hope we haven't overwhelmed them. LOL At least we didn't introduce them to any exotic foods... we had dinner at Ruby Tuesday's.

Tomorrow they are to go to an orientation for a ministry here called Crosswords but we're going to see how they sleep. We don't want to wake them if necessary especially since their ministry there won't start until next week. They came with the attitude of 'we want to serve' (how incredible is that?) and so Mike has a few things lined up for them ministry wise and I have a few fun things lined up for them. LOL These next two weeks are just going to FLY by but we're going to have a blast I'm sure. They were sweet enough to bring us a few treats... deodarant for Mike (lol), new sandals for Izzy, and peanut butter M&M's for me. Their older sister Angie sent along another little treat for me... some MaryKay products! I was so excited!

Isabella warmed up to them in no time and I think she's going to have a blast having them around. Although I'm a bit worried about her sleeping habits. We had to do some re-arranging to fit everyone in and give them some priavacy and now Izzy's sleeping in our room. Mike will just have to stop his late night dicussions and giggles. (he he... okay so maybe that's me).

Flat Hunt~
I think we have a flat! We are waiting to see if the landlord will remove some furniture and if he's willing we'll be moving! It's a different complex than we anticipated but I love it. The amenities are very nice and new with a HUGE pool and very fun playground equipment. The flat is not huge but bigger than we have now with an incredible kitchen with LOTS of storage space! It's set off a bit from the heart of the city which is always a plus and there's an Alliance Church within walking distance. How cool is that! It's not English speaking but I'm wondering if maybe there's a way I could get Isabella involved in something to help out her language skills. But... I'm not getting my hopes up because I don't want to be let down again. So we're praying and we due to some things... feel this is God's leading. Hopefully tomorrow I'll have good news.

What else to share.....
Oh how could I forget... I'm one day away from having a Coke! Tomorrow hits 21 days so Friday I can treat myself to a Coke Light! I can't believe it. I can't believe I went so long without having soda and I'm actually kinda proud of myself. These 21 days have just flown by so now I'm thinking about what other habits to work on. Maybe no sweets. Not sure I could make that one. LOL

My mind is drawing a blank so I better hit the hay. Have a wonderful day!

ps. I had some pics to show but bloggers not working for me so maybe tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


So my goal was to blog and entire week about 5yrs of marriage but I got a little sidetracked with some things so I'm going to do a top ten list... (in hour of Dave Letterman... whom I'm watching right now) of the greatest things about my wonderful hubby... Mike.

The Top 10 Greatest Things About Mike

10. He's a MAC-aholic
9. He's fearless. (Just ask his body... snicker snicker)
8. He's a good cook.
7. He's very gifted at dealing with difficult situations.
6. He loves his job and the people he ministers too like his own family.
5. He greets me with a hug all the time!
4. He's a very gifted preacher.
3. He's incredibly smart.
2. He's hot... Hot... HOT

And the number 1 reason why He's the greatest...

1. He's passionately in love with Jesus.

I love times when you feel an instant connection to someone. And I feel that in many situations, Christ seekers and followers develop an immediate bond. I believe it's faith that brings them together... no matter what their differences may be. I think this 'immediate bond' is what everybody longs for and what can set Christians a part from the rest of the world. People sense love, respect, and genuine care for others and what an awesome opportunity to share where this love comes from.

I share those thoughts... to share an exciting thing that has happened to me over the past few days. I don't normally leave comments on random people's blogs unless I've been touched by what they've had to share but the other day I came across a blog and commented. The author, Emily, responded to my comment and I was intrigued by some of what she had to share so I decided to email her. It was a fun evening for me as we emailed a few more times that same day. I learned quite a bit about her in just a short time and discovered we had quite a few things in common. Church ministry, passion for young ladies, little girls, scrap-booking etc.. Anyway... I was just amazed at the connection we had because of our faith and where it went from there.

Another cool aspect of this connection is that she and her sister-in-law are opening up their own digi-scrapping site this July and they invited me to be a part of their Creative Team! I'm so thrilled about this opportunity. It means I can have one 'major' home in the scrapping world and I can work with their gorgeous designs. And to top it off... I can work with and learn from some very godly women. Here is their new sites blog. Keep reading for some awesome things to happen this July!

~Our day~
Well... my day began at 5:30am thanks to my dear sweet Isabella. Ugh! I cannot handle days like this. LOL But thanks to Mike, I got to lay down after he woke up and ended up sleeping until Isabella woke up from her nap around 10:15. We just bummed around the house until Mike came home for lunch. Then he helped me run a few grocery errands (and I was reminded why I love market shopping so much... I got two bags of fruit for about $5... compared to my $5 little box of strawberries at the real store). Anyway... then I prepared for our evening with Stewart Stemple (a friend of Mike's.) We've been trying to get together with him since we moved but he's literally always out of the country. :)

We had salad, lasagna, and oreo cheesecake and I must say it was deeelish! lol It was really fun getting to know him a bit more and learning more about his ministry here in HK. After dinner, he and Mike went and played tennis and once they got home, I had a baby shower to attend. I had a good time at the shower, chatting with some ladies that I haven't been able to talk to in awhile and admiring the darling Amanda Jane (she's Indian with a head FULL of gorgeous dark hair.)

Now... I must go prepare our flat for our two guest arriving tomorrow! Sarah and John... I can't WAIT for you two to arrive. It's going to be a busy first evening here for them but that's always good because then hopefully (that's the idea anyway) they'll be able to sleep at night.

Hope your day is as wonderful as mine has been!!!

Monday, June 12, 2006


With a few situations that have taken place in my life over the past few months, I've really been struggling with something. That something is 'Why (as Christians) do we not confront others when something they do or say is wrong?' Matthew 18 tells us that we are to confront one another, in love, when there's a problem. So why do we fear how the other person will respond and end up shying away from the situation and ignoring the problem? Does that not condone what is being said or done? I also question when it's our role to confront. Should you have a decent relationship with the person before you say something or as a Christian, is it always your responsibility... as long as it is done IN LOVE? I would LOVE to hear thoughts from any of my readers!

This morning I received an email that was a perfect example of confronting a wrong but doing it in love and although it was embarassing for me, it was greatly appreciated! So I must apologize to my readers (I know there are few of you out there... LOL) for the ending of my poem on my last post. I've already edited it but I referred to a poem that was read in the movie Mr. Deeds that referred to beer. I had no ill intentions by posting it (in fact it was a bad plea for some laughter) and it was inappropriate for someone who calls themself a Christ-follower and serves in ministry. I feel that because of my faith, I need to be careful with my words and actions so that my testimony always relfects Christ and writing what I did (even with no bad intentions) was wrong. So... please forgive me.

On a much lighter note...
We are back in the flat hunt. Ughhh... our offers are not being accepted. We are going on Wed to re-look at one flat to see if we can make it work. One reason to move is to have a larger living room space so that we can host more students and this flat's set-up is exactly like our current one only a bit wider. So we're going to look and see if we can work with the space because they are offering us an incredible deal if we rent from them. Please continue to pray for us as we make this decision.

We had dinner with Brian and Scott at CPK tonight and Ben and Jerry's for dessert. And I got some great photos of the HK lights! Other than that (and taking about 50lbs of laundry to our laundry service) we didn't do much but rest. None of the Rose household is feeling the greatest and with our guests coming this Wed we decided to just clean up and nap. LOL

Well... I'm off to catch up on some emails and then off to bed. Have a blessed Monday!

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Ode to Marriage

Ode to 5yrs!

Today was the day (actually yesterday was but oh well) to look back upon,
5 wonderful years, so fast they have gone.

We've experienced a lot in a short amount of time,
Everything from moves and babies, to not owing a dime.

God has been good and we give Him the praise,
As we said from the beginning, the center He stays.

It's exciting yet scary to think what will come
Look what's happened so far, what will be added to the sum?

Whatever it may be, we'll trust in our Lord,
We know He will guide us and not leave us bored.

Today we will celebrate 5 wonderful years,
To us and our future we send out three cheers.

We have made a decision... now it's off to negotiating! The flats I looked at today were all ideal but for the amount we most likely will be paying we decided to go with what gives us the most. So most likely (as long as God continues to work out all the details) we will move to Royal Ascot mid-July. This place has everything we need including a park with grass across the street! Now... this isn't official yet but I'm so excited to have at least made this part of the decision!

We have our Filipino candidate this weekend and we had dinner at my favourite dumpling place! They seem like a very sweet couple but I'm not sure how much English the wife speaks. I hope she was just nervous because she seems like a really neat lady to get to know. They have a son who will be in our ministry too! Tomorrow we'll take him to lunch and Mike will treat him to a movie (such hard work for him, eh?) and then we'll have dinner with them and our board members. Please pray for the next few days... we want what God wants and the decision makers need wisdom.

Those teeth must be killing her... the poor girl. She's got all the signs of a few teeth popping through clear down to the reddest bottom I have ever seen. She just screams when we change her. I expected her top two teeth to come in after her bottom two but it seems that the one to the right (of the top one already in) is coming in, along with some molars and the beginnings of another. No wonder she's been crying out in the middle of the night. Please pray for her!

Okay... gotta prepare for an early and busy day! Blessings everyone!

Friday, June 09, 2006

What can happen in

... 5 years time?

I can hardly believe it's been 5yrs since Mike and I said our vows! Where has the time gone. Starting last night, I began making a list of all the things we've been through in that time and well...

In 5yrs time, we experienced....

4 housing moves (starting in our trailor in Toccoa, to apartment in AL, to our 5 bedroom house in MN, to the church parsonage, to our current flat... of which we will be moving out of this summer...LOL)
2 state moves (starting in Georgia to Alabama and then Minnesota)
1 country move (US to Hong Kong)
vacations in Florida, Alaska, California, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Georgia and Alabama, and Thailand

seeing a group of 5 turn into 20
moving from a group of 20 to a group of 60+
having a total of over 100+ kids (they just automatically become a part of your family!)
seeing over 10 students that are currently in or studying to be in full-time ministry
trips to Mexico, Phoenix, Atlanta
more overnighters and retreats than we can count
broomball champs
seeing students dramatically change as they commit their lives to Christ
seeing students get excited about a 'drive by prayer' night
seeing students lead adults in worship
Mike becoming a pastor to Families
me being involved with Children's Church
having a student write about Mike for an article in the newpaper
having the chance to run a pilot 'Connexion'
attending an OGN conference

seeing God's calling come to fruition in our lives
being commissioned by our MN church

Mike being ordained and beginning his Master's
Me completing 1yr of my Master's
Both of us graduating from Toccoa

mt bike accidents and broken bones, a sprained ankle too
motion sickness that turned to balance loss (and a scare of MS)
ear infections and gastritous that led to ER visits

and lots of babies of friends

Family members
Good friends
and one puppy (Raja... our first baby)

Miscarriage: So not your typical miscarriage but dealing with the adoption falling through was (I imagine) as difficult as dealing with a miscarriage

going a full year without seeing our family
worrying about how we'll eat to being debt free
making incredible friendships
saying more good-byes than I care to recollect
selling the majority of our belongings
giving away our puppies
owning my own music studio
too many flights to count... if only we started our frequent flyer miles earlier
the 1st birthday of our daughter

Wow... I'm sure there are many more things not listed here... like daily blessings or challenging/painful times yet through all of that... We're still going strong and still enjoying the journey the Lord has laid out for us! There's nothing better than 'doing life together' and I wouldn't have chosen any one else to spend the rest of my life with!

I love you so much Mike...
with all my heart, all my mind, all my soul and ALL my strength. And I will until one of us is deead.

I tried to put a picture up but bloggers not working properly so maybe tomorrow. :)

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Life... or something like it

Personal thoughts~
I started reading 'The Life You've Always Wanted' by John Ortberg and the very first chapter described how I've been feeling lately... here are bits and pieces of what he shares:

"I am disappointed with myself. I am disappointed not so much with particular things I have done as with aspects of who I have become. I have a nagging sense that all is not as it should be.
Some of this disappointment is neurotic. Sometimes I am too concerned about what others think of me, even people I do not know. Some of this disappointment, I know, is worse than trivial; it is simply the sour fruit of self-absorption. I attend a high-school reunion and can't choke back the desire to stand out by looking more attractive or having achieved more impressive accomplishments than my classmates.
But some of this disappointment in myself runs deeper. When I look in on my children as they sleep at night, I think of the kind of father I want to be. I want to create moments of magic, I want them to remember laughing until the tears flow, I want to read to them and make the books come alive so they love to read.
Instead, I look in on them as they sleep and remember how the day really went. I remember how at night I didn't have slow sweet talks, but merely rushed the children to bed so I could have more time to myself.
I am disappointed that I still love God so little and sin so much.
Where does this disappointment come from? ... The older and wiser answer is that the feeling of disappointment is not the problem, but a reflection of a deeper problem-my failure to BE the person God had in mind when He created me. It is the 'pearly ache' in my heart to be at home with the Father."

But then I also read this....

'God's plan is not simply to repair most of our brokenness. He wants to make us new creatures. So the story of the human race is not just one of universal disappointment, but one of inextinguishable HOPE."

What an incredibly AWESOME God that we serve! To know that God loves me and wants to know me despite my 'issues' gives me such peace and ignites such a passion to draw closer to Him.

So I think I need to do a personal inventory of my life. Praying and asking God to help me 'let go and let God' when it comes to those 'disappointments.'

Our day~
We attended the Mom's Bible Study this morning and it was their annual 'toy exchange.' I wish I had more to give away but it was hard to part with a lot of her toys knowing that she still plays with most things and that hopefully someday there will be another Rose to make use of them. But nobody seemed to care and the majority of the toys I did take were taken by someone else! I was so excited to see they went to good use. We came home with a wooden puzzle, a plastic phone (in hopes that she'll enjoy this more than ours... lol), a little doll (a little something to entertain her on the train ride home), and a Cinderella block holder with some bigger lego blocks. I enjoyed myself, got to meet some new moms and Isabella had a ball playing with the other kids in the playroom. I'm really excited to get more involved next year and I'm hoping to attend the end of year gathering this Saturday night. I also got to talk 'adoption' with two of the moms so that's always fun for me. LOL

We came home and both took a nap however, I woke up with some sort of rash on my face. I thought it was just how I slept but it's 8hrs later and still there so who knows.

We go flat hunting tomorrow and we're really praying to find the 'one.' LOL We're both ready to make a decision and sign a contract so hopefully tomorrow will go well. If you think about us... please pray that God would provide and that it may work out to move sooner than later.

Isabella discovered 'swimming' in the tub tonight. I don't remember how it started but I just remember her on her belly and giggling. Then she would stand up, take a few steps, and go back down on her belly again. We also had fun looking out our big window today. I was trying to do some serious cleaning and I moved the couch away from the window and Isabella had so much fun banging her head against the window, climbing up on the little ledge, and just staring out of it. She just constantly reminds me to find joy in everything.

Blessings to you all~

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Baby it's hot out here...

What a day... I took Isabella to the playground and within seconds we were both sweating like crazy! I guess the heat is officially here. The rain has taken a break but it's still forcasted for every day and though it's not raining it still looks like it will any second. So pretty HK is not so pretty right now.

Enough rambling...
The past few days have been awesome and busy therefore why I have not posted. Sunday I actually got to participate in the adult service which was wonderful (especially since Mike was preaching) and I get to participate again next week! Yeah... CC is up and running! I'm SOOOO excited. Sunday school was great and I got to learn a little more about one of our youth leaders Co. He shared a wonderful message about 'Not taking a break from God' even though it's break time and included a bit of his testimony. We had lunch bunch afterwards and we had 15 students join us... the most ever! We had a great time and I had two of our girls, Nicole and Becky, come home with me. These girls are awesome and the only two of our jr. high girls that really participate in anything so I've been trying really hard to develop a good relationship with them. We just played games and watched Ice Age 2 but it was so much fun that I think I'm going to try and do this once a month... on the Sunday's that Mike has his board meetings. That way it's just all girls and Mike doesn't have to hide somewhere. Now... I just need to start convincing some of the other girls to come. LOL

Monday was fun as well. Mike was helping a friend pack up their things but that evening we had dinner at CPK (California Pizza Kitchen... yes we do love that place) with Brian and Scott joined us this week too. We decided to get Ben and Jerry's to eat while we watched our movie and they packed it up in dry ice. So when we got home Mike decided to play a prank on me and I fell for it. (Hey it's not everyday you have dry ice in your flat.) I must've been tired because I fell asleep during the movie! I was so embarrassed.

Today we met Mike at the KCR station for chai and played outside. Nothing too exciting but we had a good time. I have been desperately trying to get some pictures of Isabella talking on the phone and hugging her baby doll but she's just too quick and everything comes out blurry. LOL

I got an email from Sarah yesterday and this is what it said..."looking forward to next week already! O MAN!" So I looked at my calendar and... my goodness it's June already. Where has the time gone? Her and her brother arrive next week and I'm so excited! Our first guests... well not the first but the first ones that we get to entertain and show around. (We had an old college friend and her beau about a month after we moved but she had been here before and knew what they wanted to do.) So I guess I need to get busy cleaning and making room for two more people.

So I'm pretty much caught up on what's been happening. Now tomorrow I can write something with a little more depth. However, it's day 12 in my 'no soda' effort and I'm going strong! I've gotten back into my exercise routine as well so I'm feeling great. Now... if all this great asian food would stop calling my name. Darn curry. LOL

We finally get to be outside again and she's happy as a clam.
Sometimes Isabella has these very random 'shy' moments and I managed to catch one on film. She was waving and talking to this couple sitting on a bench and then all of a sudden to shyed away.

Friday, June 02, 2006

It's Official and a gift!

It's official! I'm a Liddy's Loft Designer. My elements are up and ready for purchase.

You can see them HERE

There's more on the way... a few Alphas, Friend/Vacation/Baby Word Art, and some Glitter Fun. Hopefully within the next few days everything will be uploaded for your enjoyment. LOL I'm so excited about this and have been enjoying trying new things. I'm loving the most recent of my designs... "Glitter Fun" and have decided to give a few away. So here's the preview and if you like...

You can find them HERE


This picture is for you Todd and Jenny! Mike wanted to put his Yankees hat on but we decided not to... just for you. LOL

So back to Wed...
Mike had the day off... another holiday that had Dragon Boat races but it was too wet to make the effort to see them. So instead we had lunch with Chris and Athania at a little hole in the wall Chinese restaurant where we had REAL Bejing dumplings!!!!!!! It was a party in my mouth (as Mike says.) Isabella was a hit because of two reasons... 1. She loved the food. 2. She said her first Chinese word in public! (well maybe three reasons... 3. She's darn cute.) It was so great to spend time with C&A as always.
We came home and rested until Steve, Amy, & Kinley came over for dinner. I tried a new recipe (Crockpot Lasagna) and was actually pretty good. I was a bit nervous at first because it doesn't call for many noodles and it used Cottage Cheese instead of Ricotta. But it turned out great... at least I enjoyed it. And so did Isabella as you can see in the picture below...

She had it ALL over her face but that's the only way I can get her to eat different things now... by letting her feed herself. It was tons of fun watching the two little ones play together... and Isabella running around hugging everyone. And Amy made this great dessert that she said would probably be considered a WW dessert so I didn't feel guilty finishing off my plate. LOL

It was so fun to be with friends all day long and just fellowship with each other. I've realized a lot lately how important friends are to me and how much I long for deep meaningfull relationships.

Today it stormed all morning which was actually quite inenjoyable. I opened the curtains and we watched the lighting and rain just pour. It pretty much rained all day but I'm thankful for an underground carpark that connects our building with the shopping mall. Isabella and I did get out for dinner (McDonald's) and picked up some groceries. We ran into Yuko and her girls (a Japanese family from church) at McDonald's and had dinner with them. Yuko says that her English is not very good but we managed to chat for about an hour. It was really fun and I enjoyed getting to know her a little bit more. Her girls are just adorable and had fun entertaining Isabella with their happy meal toys.

Isabella had her first MAJOR spill today. She literally flipped off the couch and I lost it. I called Mike in a panic but I should've known our daughter. After a few tears and hugs she was perfectly fine and climbing on the couch again. Talk about scary! What scares me even more is I have no idea where the nearest hospital is or how to get an ambulance or who to call if there is an emergency... and the fear of always wondering if they'll speak enough English to understand what I'm saying. I guess I have some research to do and praying... for God's protection.

So anyway... it continues to rain and we continue to find new things to play with. She discovered pillows today and how fun it is to dive onto them. Tomorrow... hmmm maybe fingerpaints.

I've learned...

I received this email today and just adore what it has to say so much so that I decided to share. I know many people are going through different situations right now: questioning what is right, what is wrong, when to say no or when to suck it up, when to leave or stay, etc.... and struggling how to act as a Christ follower in these situations when your human side is confused. I think these four phrases are a great way to live life and set an example that others may not.

I've learned . . . that being kind is more important than being right.

I've learned . . . that when you harbor bitterness, happiness will dock elsewhere.

I've learned . . . that one should keep his words both soft and tender, because tomorrow you may have to eat them.

I've learned . . . that I can't choose how I feel, but I can choose what I do.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

1yr Check-Up Facts

Okay... I have to make this short. Tomorrow's a Isabella and Mommy day so I NEED to get my sleep. I've been pretty good about going to bed earlier and napping when she naps... therefore feeling much more refreshed and I don't want to lose it all by staying up tonight. Anyway....

My dear sweetie had her 1yr Dr's Appt. today (and shots... no fun) and I finally found out her weight and height. We haven't gotten this since 7 months (I think) so I was really curious. Turns out... she's just below average in weight, weighing in at 8.38 kilos (approx 18lbs) and below average in height at 71cm (approx 27in.) So... she is and always will be I guess... a smaller girl which is why it seems that (and I quote) "she looks so adorable because she's doing such big girl things in a little girls body." The shot didn't affect her too badly, just made her a little cranky. But nothing a hug or hummus couldn't fix.

I have to share about our wonderful day yesterday but I need to go to bed... so I'll leave you with a LO I made of last night. My daughter's a hugging machine!!!!!!!