Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sweet Prayers

Prayer is a vital part of the rose family. We believe it's powerful, we've seen it change lives, we've experienced the closeness to Jesus that it brings. And it's very important to us that Izzy can experience these same things so we take every opportunity we can to pray together, to teach her how to pray, to talk about how God has answered prayer, etc... A few months ago, Izzy began praying at dinner and this was her first guided prayer.

Me: Dear Jesus Izzy: Jesus
Me: Thank you for foood. Izzy: food
Me: Thank you for drinks. Izzy: apple juice
Me: Thank you for friends. Izzy: friends
Me: Amen Izzy: AMEN!

Tonight... these were her sweet words.

Jesus, love you
Thank you (for) Kayla, Uncle Nick and Auntie Adelina (we spent the day together)
Mama joy
Sleep well
Heart, mind, soul, stank (aka strength)
Love friends, me (aka love my friends more than myself)

Deep and Wide, Deep and wide

I love and am so blessed that she enjoys praying, she enjoys praying for others.. she often goes through the list of all family members. When I pick her up from Sunday School and ask her what she did... the first thing she always says is 'pray'. When we put her to sleep either at night or at nap time, she asks to pray.

Sweet, sweet prayers that I will always cherish.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Love Actually, 2007

Gotta love the fact that it is September 28th and we're still going strong with our swimming. :) Actually, I would prefer cooler weather but I won't complain about a tan that lasts pretty much all year round. LOL Anyway... you are not supposed to have cameras at pools here... I understand but it's always disappointing when I don't have proof of the one major way we spend our days or all the cute things Izzy does at the pool. But today we were the only ones there and everybody just adores Izzy so I thought they wouldn't yell at me for pulling out the camera but of course the only shot I got of her she looks goofy.

We leave this evening for our big purity retreat, Love Actually. I always enjoy these because it's so interesting to hear such differing perspectives on this topic between the boys, girls, different cultures, ages, etc... Last year was awesome because some of the girls really opened up and I'm praying the same for this year. We are breaking into smaller groups so hopefully they will feel more confident/comfortable to share. We're also doing the speaking differently this year so I'm praying Izzy will be okay tomorrow.

Mike's sharing the closing session on hurts, healing, etc... with another leader sharing a powerful testimony so I pray that God will use them mightily and that the whole weekend will be a good opportunity to look at purity in a godly and realistic way. I find at least for girls it's sometimes easy to blow off the things we're taught on purity because we want to dress a certain way, date a certain guy, and we can be unwilling to admit that what adults say is right, etc... but I pray the girls will be realistic in what the world says, what they really believe and what God's word says and that they would chose to be pure before God. So if you think of us this weekend, please pray that God will move.

Well... I'm off to get one more run in before we head out. Blessings!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

And the race is on

I think I may have lost my mind. LOL I just registered for my next race and I registered for the 1/2 marathon! I can't believe how far I've come in enjoying this sport and actually being able to do it. I've always dreamed of running a marathon but I guess I never really believed I could/would do it. Now the marathon is still a ways away but I'm definitely getting closer.

So the half is at Disneyland. Mike and I had hoped to run in either Macau or Singapore this year but with Mike's vacation time starting each year in Oct we didn't want to use a lot of time so early in the year and we didn't want to just go overnight to run. The race is on Dec 2nd and I'm actually really excited about running and the training. I completed my half training back in June but then with the trip to the states and adjusting back to life here... well let's just say I need to do it again. I was just going to start marathon training but the miles for the long run were too high to begin with after a good 6+ weeks of very little running. But anyway.... I decided to do the 'improve your half' training schedule so it's a bit different and if I find myself back to where I was in early July I'll just jump over to the marathon training.

So anyway... Mike found this race for me and it turns out that it's raising money for children with HIV/Aids so I'm pretty excited that it's helping others too. Makes it more meaningful to me. And hopefully this will be a good prep run for the Hong Kong Standard Charter run that I did last year. Maybe I could push myself to run the full for that. LOL

It's supposed to be a gorgeous run too which will be awesome if the weather decides to cooperate too.


People arriving as we were leaving.
A family self-portrait.
Izzy running with her lantern.

Well it took 3yrs but I finally remembered the exact night for Mid-Autumn (aka Moon festival... check out this site for more history and a picture of a mooncake

and remembered before putting Izzy to bed. In fact, just so I wouldn't forget, I told Mike over and over what the plan was for Tues night so that something was set in stone and I wouldn't forget.

So we met Mike about 7pm at Ma On Shan park for some dinner under the moon (we just had dessert) and walking around with our lanterns. We were actually pretty early (most people didn't show up until 8:30ish and later when we headed home) but it was so neat to see families gathering with their dinners and lanterns sitting under the moon.

We bought Izzy a Minnie lantern this year and she had fun walking around watching all the other children.

It was a lovely evening weather wise so I'm glad we remembered. We had a great time walking around, playing at the park just being together and being a part of the culture. It was interesting to see so many people lighting red candles making offerings to spirits of the moon. I sometimes don't believe things until I see them and this was just another reminder to me of how many people really don't know Jesus and how many people believe in spirits, statues, etc..

We didn't participate in eating of Mooncakes... I personally won't spend the money on them (they're not very tasty) and we didn't receive any as gifts either but that was totally okay in our books... so I guess carrying the lantern was about as close as we'll get to celebrating this holiday Chinese style. LOL

Though I'm glad I finally experienced this. It was something and my pictures and video just don't do it justice.

There's not a whole lot to the video... just trying to show you what people do.. but it's dark and a bit hard to see. Though you do get a glimpse of a lantern catching on fire. :)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Bedtime needs...

Motherhood brings me so much joy, so many funny stories, so many things to smile about and here's just the latest. Izzy insisted on sleeping this way. We'll see how long it lasts but for now it's sweet, it's cute, and it's definitely picture worthy!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

What a night...

Tonight was the greatest!!!! I'm just giddy because of how fun and exciting it was. We had friends over and I saw God at work in the hearts of two of the sweetest people I know. Amazing... God is so totally awesome and after a 'down' couple of days (nothing major just I think the down after a high of tons of fun and family time) it was so great to be reminded of His awesome power.

I had the opportunity to share how God can change us, how we have to be teachable/willing to change, how we have to be sensitive to God and His leading, how we need to seek God to know in what ways we need to become more like Him, etc... I was able to share a personal situation/struggle (Mom you'll never believe it!) and how scripture has helped me in that, and I was able to smile with my eyes at the fact that the person I was talking to, who is new to faith in Jesus... is already sharing the gospel with others! My prayer as I go to bed tonight is that I would have the zeal that she does to share Christ's love with others... that all Christians would. How many people out there are just waiting for someone to love them enough to share Christ with them?

Friday, September 21, 2007

Disney Pics

Well... I had great intentions of writing out a nice long blog but then I realized what time it was and decided it's time to go to bed. It's been a rough two weeks for the rose family... well mainly for Mike and Izzy. That darn pollution got the best of them again. Mike's got a serious sinus infection and Izzy's been put back on her meds in hopes to prevent asthma. Breaks my heart to hear her coughing so badly. She slept (if you can call it that) for about 2.5 hrs today but coughed almost the entire time. :(

If you think of them, please pray for them.

Well that's all for tonight. Here are two pics from Disney... we had a great time despite the sickness.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Friday, September 14, 2007

'Elmo's World'

I'm not sure why this ended up so dark but the voice is all you really need to hear. I absolutely love that she's starting to sing along with me. Her favorite song right now is 'My God is so Big' and of course 'Elmo's World.' She's also become a big fan of the Wonder Pets. Not sure why but I have my cleaning time in the morning where she's allowed to watch Blues Clues and Dora but they are only on Mon-Wed so today was Wonder Pets and that's all she was interested in when we were printing out some coloring pages. Oh well....

Hope this makes you smile as much as it does me!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Sweet Izzy Story

I'm reading this book about how to take care of the 'me' in mommy and it has some really good practical ways to incorporate scripture memorization, prayer, Bible study, ect into your every day routines (plus a ton of other things but alas I don't feel like naming them all) as well as journal ideas so that you don't forget things that happened in your life. She talks about how often our kids do something special/cute/etc and we say, 'I've got to write that down.' but then we never do and she talks about carrying a notebook around so you have immediate ability to write down... but I'm rambling. I haven't gotten my little notebook yet but I don't want to forget a sweet little Izzy moment so I decided to write it here.


Last night Izzy decided she was hungry at about 8pm which is usually her bed time but she hadn't eaten much so I made her mac n' cheese and let her watche Psalty while I did the dishes. She yelled out to me, 'All done.' So I asked her to bring her bowl and spoon to me. A few minutes went by but no dish so I asked her again to bring me her dish. Again nothing. So I asked one more time and in mid sentence she came to the kitchen door with her spoon. I asked where her bowl was and she looked at me and said, "heavy.' In my mind I was a bit annoyed that she didn't do what I asked and wondered why it would be heavy when she ate most of her meal. And then God said to me... 'patience Melissa. Take a minute to breathe before getting frustrated.' And that's when I realized that I had given Izzy a normal bowl because all of hers were dirty and it would have been heavy for her to carry. So I apologized to her and sent her to her room to get dressed for bed. I finished the dishes and headed back to her room.

She got ready for bed, we prayed and sang, I tucked her in and went back out the living room to get her bowl. On the way though, I almost tripped over something. I stopped, looked down and saw her bowl... about half-way between where she had been eating and the kitchen. My heart sank as I realized that she tried her hardest to bring me the bowl but indeed it was just too heavy for her to carry. I imagined her walking slowly, trying to please mommy while I was in the kitchen getting frustrated that she wasn't obeying me (when in fact she was.)

It's amazing the ways in which God speaks to you, the things He uses to teach you. I'm thankful that God spoke to me before I let my inward frustration come through in words/actions towards Izzy. And I'm thankful that God has been teaching me more and more about contentment in Him, joy, patience, and how to balance my life. It's been an amazing 2 weeks of being back in HK.. of which I will share more at another time but I just couldn't forget this moment because it really touched my heart.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Life is Good

The first few days upon returning to HK were quite difficult for me emotionally. It usually is but this time was even worse because every morning Izzy would ask for 'Yay yule and Dee Dee' (aka Laurel and Kara) and throughout the day she would look at their and Shay/Karly/Addison's pictures and say hello to all of them by name. It just broke my heart to know she missed them and that it will be quite some time before she sees them again.

Thankfully... the Lord is good and knows our hearts and needs. We arrived home on a Sat night, Sunday was just bad because Izzy had jet lag and we were just exhausted, but then Monday is Mike's day off so we had some family time which was great. Then Tuesday, Izzy and I met our friends Amy, Lukas and Vienna at the playroom in the morning and the Enn's invited us out on their boat in the afternoon... which Izzy loved! She loves being out on the water it's almost strange to me how well behaved she is on the boat and she still talks about Brett and his boat. LOL Wednesday, Izzy had her first playdate as Jacinda (a 10yr old girl from church who loves Izzy and vice versa) came over for the afternoon. Thursday we had dinner and bowled with Jill, ryan, and Hunter and friday we met Adelina and Kayla at the pool and then went to revolve in the evening. Saturday, Izzy was invited to a playgroup party and Sunday we spent the day with Nick, Adelina, Kayla, Jessica and Jayden at the Disneyland Hotel.

Wait, it doesn't stop there... Monday night Dan and Geeta came over for dinner and yesterday we spent a big part of the day with Amy, Lukas and Vienna again. Whew.... it was crazy but it was absolutely AWESOME!!! And I'm so thankful to God for the friends I have and for Him allowing us all to get together this past week when I needed it most.

Today we took a break... actually we had plans but they were cancelled and I just decided to be lazy. So Izzy and I painted, made a tent, read, cleaned, watched Dora and Blues Clues, ate cookies, played at the park, even did a craft. And here are the pics to prove it... :)

She really was happy about the tent... she was just mad that I stopped to take a picture instead of climbing in with her. lol