Tuesday, December 30, 2014

the asian in them…

what do all of these photos have in common?  the peace sign.  they love it.  it ruins so many photos.  "mary, please put your fingers down for our fancy christmas picture!"  "luke, i don't want to see the peace sign in every photo of your 4 year old shoot!"  sometimes i wonder why in the world that is so engrained in them.  i mean, i know we live in asia and for some reason all asian countries like through up their two fingers for photos but still?  then, i scroll through pictures of our friends… 

my kids and their obsession with the peace sign fit right in here.  but we may really need an intervention when we see danny's two fingers in every picture, like his buddies here...  

okay, we don't actually know these guys.  but i think they look like pretty fun guys and they also are obviously very happy to be doing the peace sign. 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

our ballerina

mary had her first ballet performance last week.  it was at the mall and i think it's basically a ploy by My Little Pony to get 200 little kids in front of their merchandise right before christmas.  :)  it was sponsored by them and their stuff was everywhere… but don't worry, we walked away empty handed.  

i thought mary may freak out and not want to go on stage once she saw it (and the people that would be watching her) but she did awesome!  i was so proud of her.  the little girl next to her is our buddy, chaira.  mary was happy to be on stage with a friend.

she didn't quite have the count down though… she kept her eyes covered for WAY longer than she was supposed to.  it was cute! 

and here she almost looks like she's actually doing ballet… on her toes and stuff.  :)

we were told it was christmas theme so mary wore a red tutu… seemed "christmasy" enough to me.  she was way underdressed, obviously!  :)  look at these get-ups!  

merry christmas from our little ballerina.  

Thursday, December 25, 2014

merry christmas!

Merry Christmas from the Pierces!  

here are a few photos i got of the kids on our way to a christmas eve service.  i love how their little personalities are captured and their obsession with the peace sign and posing are also seen (thank you asia).  

he is such a ham… serious face...

almost laughing… 

"man, i'm so funny!"

my sweet girl.

Long lay the world in sin and error pining 
till he appear'd and the soul felt its worth. 
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices 
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!

may we all experience the thrill of HOPE that Jesus brought to this broken world and long a bit more for our His return.  

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

our humble savior

i had a bit of a rough night.  i got home at 5:30 and hadn't started dinner.  i quickly started some home made mac and cheese.  then flying termites showed up in my kitchen and all things went downhill.  they come out a few days a year and fly around lights until their wings fall off and then they crawl all over the ground.  they come up from the ground and out of the walls.  it's not my favorite thing about living here!

i was cooking dinner and they were flying into my cheese sauce, crawling up my legs and down my back.  i was about to loose my mind.  i was hot and sweaty, which made the bugs stick to me,  and i saw them coming out of every corner.  i was just dreading the clean up that comes-- dead bugs everywhere tomorrow morning and ants coming out of every crack to eat the dead bugs.  i was also praying that we would not have a repeat of last year (thousands invading every bedroom).

i was having a full pity party.  it was time to put the kids to bed.  i read them a book and then prayed with them.  as i was praying i felt the presence of God come in my heart… don't imagine some magical, majestic moment with my kids, this is real life.  i was repenting of my bad attitude and thanking Jesus that He came to earth and luke was shining a flashlight in my face and asking me why my voice was getting funny (i was getting emotional).

as i prayed i was reminded of the incarnation-- that wonderful truth that Jesus, though being God, "did not consider equality with God something to be used to His own advantage, but instead He made Himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  and being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself and became obedient to death, even death on a cross."  Jesus came to earth to live among sinful humans.  this is the very thing that we are preparing to celebrate this week.

i know this seems lame, but tonight as i was lamenting living in a place that bugs crawl out of our walls, i was filled with thankfulness.  thankfulness that i have a Savior, that though He was deserving of all perfection and glory, chose to come to earth to live in a fallen world, like me… a world with sin, a world that longs for the redemption of heaven and a world with bugs.  in fact bugs were probably crawling all over Him in the manger He was placed in after He was born-- the manger that most of us have perfectly placed on our decorated mantels for Christmas.  our King and Savior had bugs on Him as an infant.  i am thankful that that is the kind of King i serve and am saved by.  though He is deserving of all things, He made Himself nothing… His entire life on earth.  i am frequently thankful for what Jesus did on the cross, but tonight i was just thankful that He came to earth.

the humility of Jesus displayed in the Christmas story is one of my favorite things about it.  look for it as your read the account of Jesus' birth in Luke and worship our humble Savior King.

Monday, December 15, 2014

rowdy boys

last week i went down to the town center during friday prayer time to take some photos.  i was drawn to these rowdy boys.  i'm beginning to think this is my favorite demographic of indonesian people… maybe not for close friends (i'd probably prefer women in their 30's of course) but for people to randomly meet, chat with and laugh with.  i sat at a distance and said little (though my remarks did catch them off guard and make them laugh… they assumed i didn't speak indonesian) but i made a lot of faces and interacted from behind my camera.  these kind of rough around the edges, rowdy little boys just make me smile.  theres also a group of little boys near my house that we play with at the court sometimes.  they're just fun.

anyways, here are some boys just being boys… 

clearly the little guy in the orange hat is the clown… and i liked him.  :)

for those of you who can't picture indonesia and situation i'm was in… i'm at the town center which is like a big park.  there is a huge mosque across the street that is presumably full for friday prayer so men (and boys) just pick a spot on the grass and put their mat down.  there were little groups of men praying all around.  there were also women, families, food sellers, balloon/toy sellers, beggars, students… there was a lot of life.  these are some of the situations i love most in indonesia, even if i'm just observing.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

amen, mary.

mary loves to draw.  sometimes we put on worship music and pray and then she will draw something that she feels like God impressed on her heart.  we want to teach her that we have a heavenly Father that speaks to her heart and she can hear Him.  sometimes she's excited about it and sometimes she doesn't want to at all (and we don't force it).  usually she draws sweet pictures of her walking with Jesus or she and luke worshipping or sometimes Bible stories.  

this picture is my all time favorite.  

she handed it to me and said… 

"mom, look i drew a picture for you!  it's kind of about God too.  you were in the desert and you were really hungry and thirsty.  so, god turned the desert into water and he made this tree grow with apples so you weren't hungry.  and, i made a heart flower because i love you."

and then my heart melted. 

amen, mary!  mama has been in the desert many a days, hungry and thirsty.  and God knows and fills my every need, every time.  this simple picture is such a treasure to me.  that God would speak this to my little girl's heart and that she drew it with such simple faith and love for me.  

i'm not overly sentimental and i'm certainly not a pack rat… in fact, i love throwing stacks of old drawings away.  this one, i hope to keep for many, many years… to remember that God always provides food and water for His people in the desert.  

Saturday, November 8, 2014

my baller...

luke loves to play sports and from about 18 months-2.5 years old he was obsessed with basketball.  he now likes just about any sport but if there is a basketball around he'll definitely want to play.  here he is playing with one of the guys that plays in our neighborhood.  this guy is so sweet and always takes time to play with luke… 

nice shooting form, bud.

then this happened.  the ball bounced up too high and hit him in the nose.  he was across the court and started running to me with a silly/stunned look but wasn't crying.  all of the sudden he starts screaming in anger and crying (i think because everyone gasped and was looking at him… he has an anger issue sometimes).  as soon as he heard there was blood, his mind was off the pain and interested in the *cool* fact that he was bleeding.  he asked me to take a picture of his face and show it to him so he could see the blood.  ha!  we wiped him up and he was good to go.  

Friday, November 7, 2014

our afternoons

sometimes life feels so normal here that i forget that our daily life is actually not "normal" for most of our friends and family.  so the last few weeks i've taken my camera outside to capture our afternoons.  

a few fun facts about indonesia.  there are two times of the day to play outside… before 7am (which we do not usually partake in) and "sore" which is about 3-5:30pm.  indonesians don't like the sun so if we're outside playing before 3:30pm many people will pass by and tell us it's hot… and i often want to sarcastically reply (oh really!?  that explains the sweat dripping off my body) but i just say "yaaa bu" and politely nod my head.  many people rest in the early afternoon because it's the hottest part of the day and people here wake up with the sun so they need a nap.  like the construction workers we had our house this week… they were sleeping all over our house from about 1-2:30… on the tile floor fast asleep.  my kids thought it was hilarious.  i digress.  it gets dark around 5:30pm every day of the year here (it's sad).  there is a call to prayer right as the sun goes down… my kids know when they hear "the mosque" it's time to go in.  everyone does.  all that to say that the flow of our day is greatly influenced by the culture we live in.  most days of the week i have my kids out right at 4pm to play and back in the house at the call to prayer.  that's our time to play outside and i love that time of the day!  

here are some of the things we do:

sidewalk chalk

they playing in our "pool" in the front yard/car port.  :)  we don't have a yard at all… most of these photos are taken right outside our house on the street where the kids play.

they play tag with the neighbors and i chat with the ladies.  another thing about life here is that there are sellers passing our house all day long making loud noises to signal that they are passing by.  each seller has a distinct noise so people know what they are selling.  we hear them all day long, even inside the house.  my kids replicate the noises as they hear them and the sellers laugh.  :)

these are becaks… they are used as transportation and can haul just about anything.  literally.  this guy is our neighborhood trash collector and kind of works for the leader of our area.  i tried to take the kids on a ride on his becak and almost flipped the thing… so he took us on a family ride around the neighborhood.  the kids loved it! 

mary loves to "tend the garden" and dig.  note, our "garden" is about 2 feet wide and has some plants that we didn't plant.  but, we are good weeders.  :)

also, everyone here sweeps the street in front of their house.  every morning around 5am you can hear "swish, swish, swish"… the little twig broom cleaning our street.  they usually do it again in the afternoon and luke likes to join "nenek mul", the sweet woman who lives in front of us.  

umm, i love him.  those buns, those squishy legs, his pigeon toed stance.  and the wedgie.  he is a constant source of laughter for us… whether he means to be or not.  

a few days last week they wanted to play golf but after loosing too many plastic ball we have relocated golf practice to the play room.  :)  here is a picture of our house… all houses here are built sharing walls with their neighbors and have gates.  

and a few times a week we'll go to the "court" down the street from us.  it's a jacked up concrete slab with some old bars to play on but we love going there.  there are always a lot of kids to play with.  luke usually ends up playing soccer or basketball with some bigger boys and mary drifts off into a world of pretend...

the young boys play soccer until about 4:30pm and then older guys come and play basketball.  danny and i play with them about weekly.  i love playing!  my kids used to hate to see me play basketball but now they are okay with it, and sometimes i even have my own cheering squad.  :)  notice the bikes are placed upside down to make soccer goals and most of the kids are barefoot.  most likely these kids have one pair of shoes for school and a pair of flip-flops.  they won't wear their school shoes outside so they either play in flip flops or barefoot.  my feet hurt just watching them.  

go celtics.  they love to wear their jerseys together.