Monday, June 30, 2014

instagram upload

bath time with our cute friend, chaira.  not sure what happened to luke!  ha!

my boston boy

happiest birthday, mary!  she's 5!

dancing in the elevator mirrors with maya and jakin

carts are small here.  notice luke's forehead wound.  that boy is rough!

fun times with mary and maya

this was a pizza hut.  yep, he orders white rice instead of pizza.  my half indonesian boy.

cutie on easter

happy easter from the pierces… he is risen!

baller.  straight baller.


one of the many wars on ants in my kitchen.  very little brings me more joy than watching them eat the poison!  

leslie and phil are married… and i got to "be there"!  

first day of big kid school (without mama)

the treasures brought by the phillips… yummy!!!

mary coloring during worship… worship through art  :)

luke always playing and singing along

file in, children.  we were a sight to see!

jet skiing with the kiddos!  so fun!  just like the days on the lake with the my aunt and uncle, kathy and steve!  :)

sibling love and the new mohawk!

luke and jakin: buddies.  they love each other!  

playing before maya and jakin head to america for baby brother's birth!  we love y'all!

mary and eli in their papua outfits for the end of year performance 

family photo at end of year performance

mary's long awaited birthday package came… just a few months and few too many dollars later!  :) 

luke greeting some gardeners… i couldn't help but laugh!

making a monster...

and a castle.

and lastly our new hair cuts… "matchy-matchy" short hair, as mary requested.

and in case someone was wondering… these are the two photos that i brought to the salon.  this is what i told the guy i wanted.  about three inches off and a totally different style.  the good news is, hair grows… and i'll be going to america in a year and i'll get a hair cut there.  :)

Sunday, June 29, 2014

find another home, rats

thursday night: talking to hayley on the phone late at night (she's in america) and i hear rat noises in my kitchen for about 30 minutes.  i'm too afraid to go in (it has a closed door to the rest of our house) but it sounded stuck in something.  i'll let danny investigate in the morning.

friday morning: see rat poop in our tupperware drawer.  having friends over that night, don't have the time/energy to cook and clean/sanitize every piece of tupperware i have so i just don't use tupperware that day.  put rat trap in cabinet under sink and will clean tomorrow.

friday night: i'm telling my friends the story of the rat poop and where i think it could be coming in (from a broken tile under our sink along the water pipe)… open the door to show them the broken tile and we got him!  there he is stuck on the glue trap we put out earlier.  danny later throws him away.  sick.

saturday morning: i'm so excited about a day of relaxing, not cooking (have i mentioned it takes 3 times as long to cook here!), not being in the kitchen… plans to go out to dinner that night.  open spoon drawer at breakfast and notice it's all dirty.  upon further investigation, we find a rat had chewed the sides of some of our drawers and gotten into ALL of them.  they were all dirty.  my day's plan as just been utterly shattered.  

i take everything out of the each drawer, wash it all, soak it in bleach water and then let it air dry all over my counter.  this takes hours.  in the middle of this drama i decide to start washing all of the hand towels that were clearly contaminated by the rat.  i picked one up to throw it in the washer and out drops a BABY RAT!!!  like, just out of the womb eyes aren't open yet.  i flip out, obviously!!  i realize that the rat that had gone through all of our drawers had babies… and i think the 30 minutes of squealing two nights before may have been labor noises.  maybe.  and then i long for the day of Jesus' return because certainly rats are a product of the fall and Jesus would not allow them in heaven… right?!?!  :)  lord help me if those baby rats were in my drawer for an entire day without me knowing.  

i take the entire drawer outside to dump it in the street while danny stands guard with a stick ready to kill the mom if she tries to get out of the open drawer hole.  my neighbors are out and are dying laughing at me because i'm clearly a bit squeamish over the matter!  luckily, my neighbor called over a security guard (kind of a jack of all trades here) to lift up the towels one by one to make sure the baby rats are out.  there were FOUR!  sick.  **as i type this i hear the rats having a party in our back area.  we hear them almost every night.  they are just everywhere here**

everything is clean by late afternoon but we know there is still a mom in there so we leave the drawers empty and dirty.  we put out traps under the sink again and put a brick over the cracked tile so no others can come in or out.  we heard him on and off throughout the night, knocking the mostly empty paint cans around… one of which was paint thinner.  

sunday morning: woke up and checked the traps.  got it!  except she was on the trap by just her back legs and was soaked in paint thinner.  we think the paint thinner was lessing the strength of the glue trap so she was sliding off.  danny asked me to hold the plastic bag while he picks on the trap/rat to throw her in the bag.  i can hardly do it and the rat is just hanging on by one leg.  sick. sick. sick.  rat is in bag, danny kills it with a brick and throws it away.

current:  traps are out again tonight.  praying there are no more.  tomorrow i will start operation clean and sanitize drawers.  and then we will have our kitchen back in order… until the next creature comes.  :)

so this sounds odd and unrelated, but i felt the presence of God all day as i cleaned.  i have a history of these types of situations almost putting me over the edge… being in the kitchen all day cleaning something that really shouldn't be happening (bugs, mold, ants, etc).  i tend to get short, irritated and looking for all that danny/my kids are doing wrong that day.  i can be nasty.  thankful that Jesus forgives me.  

yesterday was a day of victory for me.  i put on worship music and chose a good attitude.  danny and i laughed a lot, like where is the hidden camera, can this be real life!?!?  danny was so sweet and helpful… helping with kids, rat disposal, laundry, checking in on me and constantly telling me how thankful he was for all of my hard work.  i was peaceful, my mind wasn't brewing angry or irritated thoughts, i even prayed and worshipped a bit.  it was a major victory for me.  i don't say this to boast… i celebrate this victory because i so often fail with my attitude.    it was almost weird how peaceful i was.  God was so near and kind.  i went for a run that afternoon and talked to God… wondering if He was sure i could handle all of this.  God always gently reminds me of his nearness, his kindness.  it was a beautiful afternoon and i loved my neighborhood at that moment.  i was thankful we get to live where we do.

i'll be happy if i don't have to deal with another rat infestation in my drawers ever again in my life!!!  but, i will say I'm thankful for this small victory in my own heart.  i'm thankful that in the midst of a pretty frustrating, terrible situation God made himself so evident and known to me.  i'm thankful i had a friend in God that day.  and i'm thankful that there will be no rats in heaven!  

**i almost took photos of the baby rats and the mama dangling from the trap but i couldn't keep my body from jerky and squealing long enough!  and, i'm sure none of you want to see them anyways.  trust me, you don't.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

fun friends!

here's a brief look at our time with the phillips.  i got to fly to jakarta to help joy and her 4 kids get to surabaya… 4 jet lagged kids on a flight by herself in a country she doesn't speak the language… i bet she could have done it because she's superwoman like that, but i decided it would be better if i could help her (travis stayed in jakarta for a day to check the city out).  here they are walking from the flight.  we walk to our planes in indonesia… so cute with all the girls.

it's been awhile since i've been with her kids so i didn't feel like i knew them that well… but i did know that emmy was a riot and i couldn't wait to see her funny personality in action.  within a few minutes of being on the flight, she started taking selfies with the random indonesian woman beside her.  hilarious!  she was also talking to all of the kids at the airport, completely oblivious that they didn't speak her language.  i love her.

a few afternoons we had our friends over to our neighborhood to let them see what our 'normal' is.  walking to the court… 

i took all of the kids on motorcycle rides around the neighborhood.  it was sweet.  i got to talk to each of them about indonesia, what they saw that was different and what they loved about what we call home.  i loved those few minutes connecting with each of them.  ellie was my favorite little girl before i had my own… so it was so fun seeing her as a big girl.  and, they loved the motorcycles!  :)

did a little dress up… 

a photo that will later be used at their rehearsal dinner slide show… 

did a lot of eating out and going around town with this crew in tow.  they did awesome! 

and we had one more 'normal' afternoon on our street.  mary did some coloring with john wesley… and our sweet neighbor, nenek mul, was checking out mary's art work.

the happy guy!

 the kids being greeted by one of our security guys (every neighborhood has them here).

i love these last two.  nenek mul playing with luke.  she is such a sweet lady to our kids… she's always laughing with them.  she includes them in whatever task she is doing outside (gardening, sweeping, cleaning), picks flowers for mary, gives them yummy treats.  we're so thankful for her (and nenek nanik, the relative she lives with) and the way they love our kids.  here she is pointing out that luke has two cowlicks… in javanese culture they believe if a person has two of them it means they are naughty.  they often explain luke's bad behavior on his cowlicks… if only it were that easy!  :)

and just to show how not normal our 'normal' is… he's one of the many people that rode by while we were playing.  he comes by every afternoon and i think he's so cute.  he's a barber.  you can see his little chair on the side of his bike and he has a little box on the back of his bike with his comb and scissors.  one of the things i love about indonesia…

so thankful for our time with these sweet friends.  these little girls are extra special to me because of their mama… i loved getting to know them and i so loved that my kids got so much time with them.  this is a special friendship that i pray will continue to grow.  we love you ellie, gracie, emmy and john wesley!  

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

our family party

tonight we had a family party.  mary said a few days ago she wanted to have a party for our family… with a special dessert, activities, balloons, dancing and decorations.  so tonight we had a family party.  we were celebrating that we love our little family and that daddy was done grading and had a few weeks off from teaching.  :)

we started the night with some home made pizza and as i was making the pizza the kids were coloring the 'signs' for the bedroom doors, indicating where our activities would be held.  after pizza we had brownies with icing and sprinkles and m&ms to make them extra special.  i mean, it was already extra special to me and danny because it was a box from america.  i love brownie boxes!!!  

then we moved on to luke's room for dancing.  our kids love to dance.  they chose the songs… we started with kari jobe's "i am not alone." it's a beautiful song that i have been listening to a lot (clearly) but danny and i thought it was hilarious they chose that for our dance music.  we did lyrical/worship dancing together.  they sang the words, eyes closed with their whole hearts "you will go before me, you will never leave me…"  so cute and funny.  they would randomly call for family hugs with these sweet smiles or tell me and danny to dance together because we love each other.  danny and i make eye contact from time to time laughing at our hilarious kids and savoring the sweet moments.  these are some of my favorite memories and we don't do it often enough.  i didn't take pictures of dancing (was embracing the moment) but this picture of luke pretty much sums it up.  :)

lastly, we moved on to coloring… which means mary and i colored and luke and danny played with the balloon.  i drew a picture of africa with a heart on lesotho and wrote "we love you, baby!" mary hung it on her wall so she could always remember where our baby is from.  tonight i really wanted our baby home.  i always want our baby home, but if i'm honest, it's not always at the forefront of my mind.  (i don't think i could emotionally survive if it were)  tonight, i really wanted our little family to be complete.  i can't wait to include our baby in decorating cookies, dance/worship nights and sibling fun.  

it was a fun night that i don't want our family to forget.

but just to keep it real, in case you are thinking our house is always full of smiles and mushy family moments… luke got in trouble three times this morning for telling mary she would be put to death (thanks haman and mordachai)  ;)  we still have a long way to go in the family love department.