Thursday, December 30, 2010

Cultural differences and your opinion....

Have you ever just been walking in a mall, driving down the road or sitting at a cafe and felt like the world was going around you in slow motion, you can't hear anything, no one see's you and it feels like you just might me in a dream.

It isn't until that one person steps in front of you or the bright tail lights of an SUV illuminates to give you a wake up call that if I don't snap out of this dream I'm going to hit the back of this truck....... that is when total instinct takes over and your foot thankfully slams on the breaks.

As you sit on the bus, you see so many faces come and go....some with their family, some with a friend and some with no one at all, one wonders what are they thinking, do they have someone they are going home to, does anyone love them, is there something that gives them purpose, what is it that makes them so different then me.

They seem foreign!

Yes maybe they speak a different language and yes maybe they are of a different culture and back ground, they may eat different foods and their perspective on things might be a just a little different then mine, but one thing remains the same, everyone longs to have purpose, everyone wants to feel loved and everyone wants to be heard.

What makes it so easy to judge one that is vastly different then us?

As a foreigner in the country of Austria I am more aware of the mind sets of others and opinions of one might be towards those that may dress differently, might not know the language and just simply stand out from the rest because of their lack of knowledge or experience.

It is often that I go about my day thinking what is that makes us all so different from one another?

Culture, Politics and Religion set us apart....this is true!


But let us be aware that life is full of imperfect things and imperfect people, learn to accept each others faults and choose to celebrate, accept, and appreciate each other for their differences. That is when I believe we all will truly understand that we really aren't much different from the next and when judging of cultures, criticizing and fear of the unknown will no longer set the opinion of those who have not experienced cultural differences for themselves.

A lack of exposure and knowledge of other cultures is often how our opinions, our critical attitudes and our mindsets become misconstrued.


There is no doubt that each and everyone of us notice the differences between one another. Even my small children notice the difference between a child that is sad, sick, of another color or behavior but what makes then so different?

Are they blessed or are we blessed.....are they different or are we different? What and who determines that? Often we allow our opinion to determine what culture is normal, or we choose to allow our government, our own culture, our Biblical beliefs or even Hollywood to determine what is acceptable or normal.

Live, Laugh, Love.....the reality of your life might differ from mine but we all are living in this world together, we must laugh along with the good and the bad that comes our way, and Love the challenges that we face that are meant to make us a better person....we stand for what we believe, we fight for freedom and we are convinced that our reality is the only one out there.

I challenge you to go beyond the four walls of where you live, and dig past the prejudice feelings of what you might think, feel and seem to believe is true. I promise that you will be amazed how much you have in common with whom you thought was so different and foreign from yourself.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

...love for onions

I love onions and garlic. As a teenager, I remember any time I would walk into the house my Mom would say "Yuck" you smell like you've been eating garlic. You see she didn't really enjoy garlic and doesn't like onions at all, so of course she didn't have an appreciation for the great flavor both of these things give.

I still love the taste of things that have a pinch of garlic in them and at any chance, that is when my husband is not around I order my Cheeseburger with onions.

It's pretty funny how both of my children have completely different likes for foods.

*Aleia likes more bland and simple foods...but everything must be dipped in Ketchup, and I mean everything.

*Brienna likes stinky, sour and spicy foods...and she doesn't like to dip her food into anything. She also loves coffee, she calls it "Faffy"

Aleia doesn't like Cheese or Carrots but loves Broccoli and Yogurt.
Brienna doesn't like Gummy bears but loves hard candy.

They both love Rice, cereal and Pop corn :-) at least three things they agree to eat the same of. Just recently Brienna has been enjoying spaghetti, so that makes one more thing they both enjoy eating together.

I was thinking back wondering if my Sister and I were the same way. I do remember her liking the more healthy bland foods and me enjoying more spice and saucy things. It's funny how raising my girls is bringing so many memories of me, my Mom and my Sister all back so fresh to the surface of my memory.

There are times that my strength and patience are gone but then a little remembrance of how my Mom made it and how she raised us seems to give me the courage and strength that is beyond explanation....I do know that other peoples life experiences are another persons greatest lessons to follow (how to or how not too) and I'm so thankful for the courage and strength my Mom taught me through her life experiences...Even if she didn't like onions or garlic she sure was an amazing Mom to a challenge like me.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Something is wrong with this picture.....

On my way to pick Aleia up from school I saw a few disturbing things that make me want to put her in a box forever, but as we all know we must allow our children to fly and pray that we have taught them the right direction to go.

A 12 year old boy offers a cigarette to a 9 year old boy, he takes it, inhales and then passes it to his other friend not more then 7 or 8 years of age....as the 12 year old flips the car behind me off he then inhales from the same shared cigarette, what I describe as a community smoke!......then on the other side of me a 15 year old boy is walking down the side walk and takes a piece of gum out of his mouth and makes sure that it is properly dispensed into the trash bin.....there is something wrong with this picture.

How can it be that we get more upset if someone litters or we correct a young person if they throw trash on the ground but we pass by and don't say a thing to those that are polluting their bodies or disrespecting someone or even them own selves.

Something is wrong with this picture!

It blows my mind what we over look and what we actually pay to much attention to. I go to a local park in the neighborhood and a lady informs me that I'm not welcomed because I'm not apart of the community or someone gives me a hard time for still having my winter tires on in the Summer yet they all just walk right past a 7-12 year old smoking a cigarette....something is wrong with this picture.


What matters to one seems to be trivial to the next...what matters to me the most is that I raise my girls to be leaders and not followers....how about you?

Sunday, September 5, 2010

My 2yr Blogoversary

It's hard to believe that today marks my blogoversary.....2 years since I started writing about our Families Journey.

Brienna was almost 4 months and I realized that I didn't have the same time I had before to send letters, write out numerous Birthday cards, and be as organized in the sentimental department as I would like.

I have always been big on recording Birthdays, anniversary's and reminiscing about the past through pictures and through the many hand written journals I have done in the last 17 years....but as time seems to not be my friend these days I find that I am content with my blog as it has filled many pages and covered 2 wonderful years of our families journey.

Hopeing that you all have enjoyed the journey along with us and that you will continue to walk with us as I blog about the many wonderful mile stones, challenges, obstacles, joy's, victories and just plain life experiences.

As I look back on the last two years of my blog I realize how much joy it has brought me; I have met many friends and been able to be encouraged by the life experiences of others and hopeing that I as well have left a line or two or even a picture that has a brightened someones day.

Many people have a grand prize give away on there blogoversary....... my gift to you is that I'm still here and gonna stay here to record the empty pages with the many memories we still have to make and get to climb as a family together.

Hope you enjoy our Families Journey!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Don't want to grow up

Charles came home last night and Aleia was still awake...waiting for her Daddy to get home from work-church. He tucked her in and she whispered in his ear "I don't want to grow up". Of course the conversation goes as you would think, Charles asked her why and she said "cause if I grow up I can't sit on your lap anymore, or sit on your shoulders or play with my toys".....So Daddy I want to stay this big forever.


Aleia so small and petite....I love her little fingers and toes!


He explained to her that she would always be his baby and always be able to sit on his lap and she can play with her toys as long as she wants, not to worry about growing up or getting bigger....just to enjoy life right now.

Most kids want to get bigger, that's how you get them to eat their green veggies, but not my girls, I've tried that tactic on them....if you eat your veggies you'll grow big and strong like Mommy and Daddy.....are you kidding...they won't eat anything they think is gonna make them bigger, they both want to stay small forever!

As much as we would love for them to stay as petite and small as they are, we know the process of life is to grow, learn and leave! So until then we will hang on to all that we can until the natural process takes it's course.

Friday, September 3, 2010

My husband Rocks-Friday

So amazing the love two can have for one another, the simple things in life that make one happy is fulfilled just by the love of that one special person.

Just a few days ago, we celebrated our 16th year wedding anniversary and as you've heard many say, "wow where did the time go"....I feel that way but only in the perspective that I want it to slow down because I want more memories and more time with the one I love. It seems we get so busy, other things take priority, children fill up space, work and ministry seem to take over.

Making time for the one you love.....it is truly our responsibility to make sure that the one we love stays priority over all else that matters.

.....my husband rocks because even in the business of life, he still finds time to make arrangements such as being in one of my favorite places in the world on our anniversary and having the whole day to ourselves, to reminisce of our days spent there, eat great food, enjoy each others smile and take lots of picture to always make sure we remember such a special and beautiful day.

He knew how happy it made me to be there and by me being happy it made him so happy as well and that is true love......and one of the many great reasons MHR's (my husband rocks)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

A story worth telling....

As I was taking a walk with my girls yesterday Aleia said....Mommy tell me a story of when you were a little girl.

Oh no....I just never thought that question would ever arise. My response was "Um when I was a little girl....Well!

How come when she asked that question butterfly park stories didn't come to my mind, cotton candy with Dad at the fair didn't come to mind, but hardship of a young child, trials and just trying to make it in a world that seemed against me.....came flooding to the surface!

I wanted to tell her stories of taking walks with my Mom, and getting ice cream at a beautiful parlor. Yet still stories of loneliness flooded my mind....stories of having to be strong at a very young age came to mind.

As I was walking I was praying in my mind that good memories would come to me and a few did. But I was able to tell Aleia God has blessed her with a Mommy and Daddy who both love the Lord, who love her and are striving there best to provide a loving and stable environment for her so that when she grows up she can sit and tell her little daughter wonderful stories.

Don't get me wrong...I had some wonderful times as a kid, but how many of us really live our childhood in the hopes that one day our daughters will ask us to tell them all about it. I have to admit some of those days are a fading memory and I'd like it to stay that way....but I know that from now on I will be giving my girls a chance to tell beautiful stories full of healthy great memories to their children.

I'm not naive to think that everyday will be full of rose, butterfly and candy stories but I do know that the goal I'm striving for is that my children have a life full of stories to tell....stories that will one day write a complete and beautiful book of a life happily and securely lived.

I am thankful for the strength that my childhood gave me....my life has been touched by so many wonderful people...without it all I wouldn't be the person I am today....and although I've had some bad days, I've had some hills to climb, when I look about and see where it has brought me....I have to say God has been good to me and I can't complain.

....AND with all the stories my girls have to tell one day to their little ones ends with ---they have had some bad days and some hills to climb but when they look back God has really been good.... then I can say I gave them a life story worth telling.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Our street car...

This is a street car.....one of the many options we have for public transportation. I really enjoy the new street car that you see here but often the old one comes and I have Aleia, my bags, and the stroller with Brienna in it. The old street car has about 3 of 4 steps to get up into it and the new street car you just roll right onto it from the curb.

The color of them are very attractive, they ride nice, they are clean and have a lot of space for the stroller.

When the old one comes we either wait for the next street car, to see if it's a new one or we just walk to the next place or next stop of transportation such as the bus or U-Bahn.... our under ground transportation.



Many of you have asked if we take the public transportation here....and yes!!! We often do, we are grateful that it was an easy system to learn and that we have the option of using it. We actually have a bus stop right outside our house, which is super convenient.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Monday, August 30, 2010

Moments to ba-member

Aleia just got out of bed....not 1x, not 2x's and not 3x's but after about the 10th time I finally just gave in and sat her on my lap.

The conversation went like this:

Me: Aleia why are you so wonderful?
Aleia: Oh Mom cause you love me
Me: I sure do, I think you are amazing and I am so glad your my best friend
Aleia: Well Mom I'm so glad God made you
Me: Awww I love you Allie....you are the best.

And she gave me a great big hug and kiss and said Mom I'm glad your not sick.

Not sure what all is going through her little mind but I know moments like these are the ones I want to "ba-member" as Aleia says......and treasure all of my days.

How can you get mad at such a precious little one who gets out of bed time after time and in the end thanks the Lord for a Mommy like me.

These are the moments.....to remember...or in Aleia's words "ba-member"!!!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Friday, July 30, 2010

A Mothers Observation:

Saw a tall very distinguished lady today walking down the side walk in the rain with her 3 small children. One seemed to be about 5 years of age, then 3 and a new born in a stroller. All boys!!!

I looked at her and felt such compassion for her, yet something in me felt very proud of her and I didn't even know her....she had her hands full and she seemed to be totally in love with her task (3 little boys)! She was pushing the stroller with one hand, then with her other hand she was directing the 5 year old to hold the umbrella just right. It was as if every part of her body and senses were in the moment....she seemed together, protective, alert, nurturing and one of the most important things....she didn't seemed stressed in the moment at all.

As I begin to observe what kind of Mama she was....I had to ask myself "what do I look like when people are looking at me from a far off with my girls". Do I at times look stressed out, to busy, not together, unconcerned and frazzled .....or to others do I look like a perfectly fit Mother to my very busy, dependent, demanding beautiful 5 and 2 year old.

Do I look in love with the blessings that have been given to me? or do I look irritated and overwhelmed?

I often remind myself during these very challenging stages of my girls, that I must stay patient, give myself plenty of time when I'm out for any mishaps...because with Brienna there will be plenty of those....be sure to have a whole package of baby wipes anywhere we go. ...but most of all I have to remind myself the way I react and respond to my Aleia and Brienna's needs and demands I am instilling things in them that will affect them for the good or bad for the rest of their lives.

I have to ask myself am I the Mother to my children that when they grow up they will say my Mom taught me what kind of Mother not be....or am I the Mama to my girls that they will say...I want to be the best Mama ever, just like mine was to me....!

My girls are my responsibility and I want to be the best at it.

I want to make it look easy but real, in saying that sometimes real is when my clothes look like bib, I don't always have bio snacks preparred, my diaper bag is not alphabetized and I don't always have the right answer..... but at the end of night when my girls can lay down, kiss me and say I'm the best Mama ever, then I feel I did my job.

I want my responses to be kind, patient, creative, understanding and in every part of Motherhood I want to be teaching my girls what kind of Mama they want to be and not the kind of Mama they don't want to be.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Just a few things that I always have on my grocery list and in the house.

We love Mexican....so every Monday I prepare taco meat and beans to makes nachos, taco's, taco salad and chips and salsa. It always makes an easy snack and a fast meal to prepare if I'm in a hurry. Everyone loves it.

Strawberry jelly and peanut butter is a must...for the little ones and big ones :-)

Pop corn, hot dogs, yogurt and cereal.

For the Summer since we got a small gas grill I've been making grilled potatoes and onions, chicken and hot dogs. We all love to grill and it makes great fun memories to be outside with the girls.

Lately it's been so hot that we have found ourselves on the not so busy days sitting in a small tub outside full of cold water.

It seems that the Summer is fading quickly so we are trying to make the best of what time we have left.

What do you all have planned or have done this Summer?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Set your fear's aside

Could it be the very thing we are afraid of and verbalize that we are fearful of doing when it is no longer there or it is taken from us is the one thing we regret not ever taking the opportunity and even long for it the more.....Fear has an ugly way of ripping what could have been from us if we allow it to.

Knowing that the fear we have now controls our situation, our decisions, our out look, our perspective and what people perceive in us as well.

Fear of the unknown is normal, being worried that you don't know enough or have enough experience to step into that responsibility is normal, feeling inadequate is normal.

The problem is when we put it into our own hands and allow the fear, the insecurity's and the unknown control the outcome of what our purpose is and was suppose to be.

Sometimes there is a set plan, a process of how things are to be, what position you are to take next, things are lined up just accordingly but fear takes control, it causes doubts, questions and eventually takes you out from underneath the umbrella of God's protection and His true will and purpose for your ministry and life.

Often our human nature gets in the way.....all ages of life compete with fear.

Our fear's are the very thing that keeps us from being so great, feeling accomplished or even being fulfilled and ever having a true sense of purpose.

The very thing you were afraid of is then taken from you, and you wish it was back, you wish the opportunity would present itself again, you wish you had never expressed that you felt inadequate. Instead you wish you would have trusted that you were strong enough to do the task at hand.

You live with a life full of regrets because you let fear take control!

It is not bad to express your feelings of doubts, fears and inadequacy! Just don't allow the verbal part of it be what sets you back and keeps you from your greatest dreams.

So often I have seen as I am offered opportunities, I'd like to decline and take the high road from the responsibilities that have been presented to me but knowing if I go beyond my fears, go beyond what I think I can accomplish and do what seemed impossible is when I see the big picture and find that I have even more strength in me then I ever knew.

Facing my fears..... Has given me boldness, it has given me experiences I may not have other wise had, going beyond my fears has given me confidence, it has taken me out of my comfort zone and prepared me for even greater things I felt I could never do or accomplish in my life.

Set your fears aside and see what you can do if you just trust and take the opportunities that are given.

Conquer your fears TODAY!

1. Go back to School
2. Teach a Bible Study
3. Except that position in ministry
4. Have a baby
5. Mentor a young person
6. Do street evangelism
7. Get a job
8. Do something in your community
9. Be consistent and faithful
10. Start something new....cake class, learn a language, go sky diving, lose weight, take up an instrument, give up an addiction.....what ever it is set your fear's aside TODAY!


You are not a failure if you try and don't succeed, you are a failure when you don't try at all!

When you don't try to overcome your fears you not only fail and disappoint yourself but ultimately your fear affects your family, your ministry, your walk with God and eventually interferes in every aspect of your life.

SET YOUR FEAR'S ASIDE!!!!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Independence Day-2005



Here is our little Aleia on her very first 4th of July. She was amazed by the fireworks, they were loud and bright and she was fascinated by it all.

It was the best 4th of July.

This picture is a special reminder of that great day....Aleia was showing us she loved it too by giving us the peace sign.

Tomorrow is the 4th of July....Independence Day!!!! My favorite Holiday ever.

A firework reminds me of life: Fire=Trials of life, Boom=Anticipation of what is to come, Crackles=Potential of greatness, Color=Richness of life, Illumination=Great expectations.

All in one little firework....such brightness and possibilities.....and most of all FREEDOM!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

bubble fun


Such a unique present Aleia was given for her Birthday. The whole family has enjoyed a little bubble fun.

We also took the bubble set to our recent church in the park picnic and it drew in many other little children from the surrounding area of the park.

Bubble time, Bubble fun! Aleia has a bed time story she loves for me to read it goes like this:

Dirty fingers, dirty toes,
Dirty shoulders, dirty nose
All my dirty deeds are done.
Time to have some bubble fun.

Yellow Ducky, “Quack, quack, quack.”
Hello Froggie! Now I’m Back!
Dip a finger, dip a toe~
No more waiting, in we go.

Bubbles, bubbles in the tubbles,
Splashy, splashy, splooshy scrubbles.
Glimmer, glitter through the air.
Bubbles, bubbles everywhere

Scrub the tummy, scrub the knees,
Scrub the elbows, if you please.
Bubbles on my shinny shin.
Shasaam! They’re on my chinny chin!

Rubba-dubba pink shampoo,
Make a scary, hairy do.
Bubble moustache, bubble wishes~
Blow a million soapy kisses.

Bubbles, bubbles in the tubbles,
Splashy, splashy, splooshy scrubbles.
Glimmer, glitter through the air.
Bubbles, bubbles everywhere.

Squeaky Ducky, leaky Frog,
Everybody’s waterlodgged.
Flippy flappy, slippy slosh~
What a fishy, wishy wash!

Twinkle fingers, twinkle toes,
Shiny shoulders, shiny nose.
Give a shimmy, give a shake~
Bring a towel, for goodness sake.

Dry the tootsies, dry the mop.
Squeaky clean from tush to top.
All the water’s disappeared~
Raise a scrubbly, tubbly cheer.

Flannel bottoms, flannel shirt~
Good~bye bubbles, good~bye dirt.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Such a great help


Preparing for the last conference....we had many task that had to be done. Sis. Suppan, Sis. Amber, Aleia and even Brienna helped in making the welcome boxes for all of the ministers and their wives.

Our whole team helped in so many ways for the conference. It was such a great success. We couldn't have done it without them all.

It was a great conference, one that we are still reaping from and will for years to come.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Trials birth Compassion

So often we make the mistake of taking the trials of life as a set back, or think that the mishaps we face are meant to make us miserable, unlucky and bitter.

I have been thinking lately of my past...growing up and also as a married adult.

Thinking of my set backs
Thinking of my mistakes
Thinking of the many, many trials that I feel were meant to destroy me and set me back!

.........my trials only made me stronger, they were meant to make me feel like a failure but only made me succeed and try harder, the trials were suppose to make me give up and believe in the failure and not see or believe in the success from my failures.

Without the trials, heart breaks, and the mistakes, I feel I would not be who I am today.

Through our trials compassion is birth.

Yes set backs will come, mishaps will occur, we will face trials as we try to succeed.

Often we blame our enemies, whether that is the enemy of the flesh or enemy of the spirit. When actually our trials are often brought upon us by our own pride and stubbornness, unwilling to submit, unwilling to admit we are wrong or unwilling just to try what has never been done before.

We have often given credit to the enemy for our trials when the credit should be given to the Lord....the trial of our faith worketh patience and are most often brought and put upon us to perfect us.


Our trials are not meant to make us feel:

Bitter, Cautious, Critical, Leary, less compassionate and like a failure!
..........our trials are meant to make us wiser, more loving, more giving of our time to others, less critical and more compassionate..

Let us learn from our trials, and become better because of the mishaps that are brought not only to protect us but to perfect us.

Trials birth Compassion...Trials birth wisdom...Trials birth Love...Trials birth maturity...Trials birth Memories! Don't be bitter in the trial you are facing, look for the blessing in the trial and look forward to the better person you will become through the storm of life you are facing.

Don't believe in the failure.....but believe in the final success from your failures!

When you fail and don't succeed try, try again!!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Aleia turns 5

Aleia recently celebrated her 5th Birthday.

It was on the Sunday of Mothers Day so a few ladies got together and surprised us all with a little party for her along with 2 other young people in the church. She was so happy and enjoyed the day very much.



The next day we decided to celebrate her Birthday as a family. Just the four of us. It was simple and sweet, just as she prefers it. We opened a few gifts from family and friends from America and had a small chocolate muffin cake....the theme of her party was tinker bell....she said turning 5 was the best ever!

Hard to believe 5 years ago she was so tiny and fragile....Aleia has brought such great joy to us. She is an amazing little girl!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Do you stare?

Do you wonder why they stare...?

*Is it because you look funny
*Is it because they think you don't match
*Is it because they think you look weird
*Is it because they are curious
*Is it because they think you look fat
*Is it because they think you are a terrible Parent


Could it be they stare because:

*They admire you
*They wish they had the boldness and confidence you have
*They see a difference in you
*They are just curious
*They need a friend
*They are lonely
*They are bored
*They think you are beautiful
*They have an opinion and would like you to ask
*They are just people watchers
*They are learning from starring at you
*They want to be in love just like you
*They want to be a parent just like you
*They wish they could put a hot outfit together like you


Why is it that we always think when people stare it is for a bad reason....why is that when someones stares we feel defensive and awkward, why when someone stares we often turn to them with a sarcastic stare back instead of smiling and giving them a friendly gesture.


Lately Aleia has been bringing to my attention that people stare....first I asked her what staring means to her and she gave me this big open eye look....she has questions such as "Mama why can't I stare at them, or Mama why are they staring at me."

We all stare....!

We all have people staring at us....!

Next time someone stares at you, maybe give them the benefit of the doubt, hold your head up high, be friendly, bold and confident and see what a difference it will make in you and in the one staring at you.

Can I ask.....why do you Stare???? :-)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Have a Snickers bar

Don't be angry have a Snickers bar.

The Decision to be Anger free is all up to us. The Bible says we can be angry and Sin not....it's not a sin to be angry. Anger turns into sin when it becomes a heart issue.

Anger can easily become a heavy weight that we carry around our neck. Just as we get use to carrying our natural weight around...the weight of Anger becomes invisible to us but very evident to those around us.

Often we are unwilling to let go of anger, because it is the one reminder we have of the hurt that was once done to us.

Anger takes our joy away!
Anger affects our prayer life!
Anger makes it difficult for others to relate to us!

The anger we carry around, will lead to a heart of bitterness.

There are so many ways to overcome anger....Don't be angry have a snickers bar.

I'm certainly not promoting weight lose but the time it takes to go to the gas station buy a snickers bar, tear it open and eat the candy bar slowly should be enough time to calm yourself down and realize what you were angry about is not worth the fight in the first place.

Focus on what you can change and ignore what you can not change

Hand it all over to God....he will complete the work He started in us.

In the church, at home, and in the work place we must purpose in our heats to exhibit the love of Christ....Don't be angry have a snickers bar.

There is an old song I love: If I hold my peace and let the Lord fight my battles victory, victory shall be mine.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Balance

Family and Ministry is my life and I couldn’t imagine one without the other.

I’m a Mother first to children who need me in this very important time of their lives. At times I’m not able to focus all of my efforts on the church part of ministry but I know that in this phase of ministry my family is my number one responsibility.

Balancing Family and Ministry is not a one time fix, but it takes continual adjustments, daily communication and consistency between you and your spouse in which also might be your Pastor.

We are all searching for a true sense of balance in every area of our lives whether it be in our diet, our schedules, education, parenting, our marriage, and the work of the Lord.

You will find it is easier to juggle one or the other but in time, with practice, consistency, and prayer you will find a solution that fits and works best for you and your family.

In a world where carrier status, higher education and busy schedules rank over family time and certainly have priority over full time ministry, more then ever it is time for us to recognize what truly is priority.

Never before has there been a time where we as ministry must make a conscience effort that everything we do be put in check. Our time is limited and, because of that we must balance our whole day between so many things that require time. Here are a few ways to keep ourselves in check.

>You must know your limits

>Know how to say NO

>Have a weekly plan

>Communicate

Balance is letting go of the things that aren’t going to matter ten years from now, and riding the waves with the things that do count at the present time.

>God

>Family

>Ministry/Church

Balance is doing the very best you can, and at the end of the day handing it over to the Lord with a sigh of relief.

Sometimes Balance goes to the extreme of letting go and letting God.


Presented to the Austria/Germany "Voice of the the Vision" magazine in this months issue.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

True Sweetness......


Chocolate, Apple pie, suckers, ice cream, cotton candy, frosting, donuts, cookies and sugar are all sweet but this is what true sweetness is..........two sisters who love each other and will forever.

Yes they fight, they push and they pull but they love, kiss, hug, stand by each other, defend one another, share, and miss the other when one is gone and that folks is what true sweetness is all about.

Chocolate, sugar and cookies might satisfy your sweet tooth but the sweetness between the love of two sister goes beyond anything you can imagine.

I'm so thankful I have two girls that love each other and are best friends. Often they remind me of my Sister and I......and that is always a good memory.....Love you Bran!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Toe digger....


She is our little toe digger. She is addicted to pulling all the little specks of dirt, fuzz and even nothing at times out of her toes. She's a toe digger....looking for treasure so it seems.

She doesn't like shoes or socks on....mostly because toe digging is not as accessible with them on.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Thursday, April 29, 2010

My little Lady.....
















Crazy yet calculated, Daring yet cautious.....she's a girl with an amazing imagination, great ideas and a spunky attitude.

Here she is using her stuffed dog's leash as a swing from our stair well. She loves to prove she can do anything and I believe she can and will.

Her hands are tiny yet so strong, she wants to be grown up like her Daddy yet still is such a baby, she eats all the time yet stays hungry......& SKINNY!

Each day that she gets closer to turning 5 I can't help but hang on to each memory leading to that day, knowing that each year that passes she will become more of a women yet still my little lady.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Getting things in order.......


Charles will be home from Africa tomorrow morning. The Church Saints, our girls and I are looking forward to his return. We adjust while he's gone but when he is back home, everything seems to feel more safe, and secure.

Yes he adds a sense of intensity when he comes home, because he is over flowing with dreams, ideas, goals, passion, meetings, phone calls, and has a bad cause of what I have diagnosed as overly organized disorder...OOD better known to most as OCD. He loves things in order, he loves to eat in silence and as many of you know with a almost 5 year old and almost 2 year old that doesn't happen often around here.....order or silence:-)

But as it comes closer to him arriving, we always feel a wind change. The girls and I pull ourselves together, get things in the order how Daddy likes them, and prepare ourselves for the one thing the 3 of us have in common..... and that is Loving the most precious, sweetest and greatest man we know.

Can't wait for him to finally get home, and although he's only home for a short while we will enjoy each moment we have as a family together.

Hope to have pictures and a detail description of Charles mission trip to Africa....(coming soon!)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Like Memaw

I found this picture of Aleia while we were in Michigan last year and it reminded me of my Mom....Aleia's Memaw! If any of you know my Mom she can make some serious moody faces and here's one of them:-)

The older I get the more I miss my Mom, wishing sometimes she were here with us to see our girls growing and learning how to be little ladies.

So often, I'm amazed that even though Aleia hasn't seen Memaw or spent a lot of time with her, how much she is so much like her.

As much as I hated it when my Mom would refer me to someone if I said something or did something that reminded her of someone, I find myself weekly saying to Aleia 'Ok little Robin"...you're just like your Memaw and in many ways I love it, cause I feel like through Aleia I still have a little part of my Mom....Memaw with me all the time.

On a side note....have you every made an egg and it still smelt wild......if not maybe it's just the eggs here, I guess thats what hot sauce is for.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Monday Madness

Mondays are to be set aside as a day off, a family day but it just so happens to be the busiest day of my week. It's a day I get organized, re-set my weekly goals and my annual resolutions, making sure that I'm staying on track with what is truly important.

-God
-Family
-Church

Today we're crossing our fingers that the planes will be going out of Vienna so that Charles can catch his next flight from Amsterdam to Kenya then onward to Malawi.

He is looking forward to being with the wonderful team and seeing great things done in Africa. I'll post more on his trip while he is there at another time.

Until then, I'm packing his clothes, putting dishes away, doing laundry, blogging, cooking, organizing and looking forward to going to bed tonight EARLY!


Charles getting all his papers together for his trip

Friday, April 16, 2010

......another year older

As many Mothers do....... I find the closer my girls get to being another year older I start reminiscing of stages that have come and gone.

With both of their Birthdays just one month away, one daughter just about the height of my rib cage and the other one just about ready to be out of diapers...I find that I'll miss when my first born couldn't tie her shoes, even though her putting them on herself makes things easier, or when she had to ask me for a word she was thinking of, or maybe even the most simple things as straping her seat belt around her little chest to be sure she was safe for the journey.

In the time I've been a Mama I've changed approximately 4,341 diapers and yet the closer our second born gets to being potty trained I find that changing one more diaper is not so bad, it means she's still that much farther away from being a big girl and not needing us as much as she does now.

I can say even though some stages have been challenging and have caused restless nights, and yes I do know there are yet some stages that we must go through that won't be so easy I'm sad that some have gone and I look forward to many more wonderful and challenging stages with my beautiful angels.

Being a Mother has brought the greatest joys, worries, challenges and victories to my life and I'm so thankful I was chosen to be the Mama for the job.

Can't wait to celebrate another year with the two most amazing little people in my life..................forever my baby girls!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Monday, April 12, 2010

S.L.S.S


Silly little Sally Sue sits as she slurps her special kind of cereal with her big girl spoon.

Her smile is simply spectacular especially with her sweet dimple on the sides of her silly smile.

She is sweet, stubborn and super smart.

Our Silly little Sally Sue!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Diaper rates

Ok so the day we land back in Austria from America I seem to think I have enough diapers to last Brienna till I can get to the grocery store to buy some more. Yeah 10 diapers should last me for 3 days but what I didn't factor in was that the day after Easter would be a Holiday and all the stores would be closed.

So on Saturday night I realize that we have only 3 diapers left for Brienna and that will not last her until Tuesday, so I call Charles on his way back from AMTC Bible school in Germany to tell him before he gets home to stop at the OMV gas station to get me a small package of Pampers for Brie to last her through Tuesday when the stores will re-open.

He complies and when he gets home he hands me the package of pampers and the receipt to file in our April envelope of expenses. I glance at the receipt and it says 33.48 Euro......What? I say to him the diapers cost 33 Euro he says "no I bought 2 rolls of toilet paper to" hahahaha......no way that is high way robbery, 29.99 euro for a package of diapers.

Well I guess that is the diaper rate at the gas station, I will remember this when I'm almost out and either use cloth diapers or better yet not wait till I only have 3 pampers left before I head to the grocery store.

By the way the Diapers rates at the local grocery store are half the cost of the ones at the gas station.

For all of you who need to know the exchange rate on 29.99 for a package of diapers in the dollar is 41 American dollars.....yeah we could have eaten at red lobster for the cost of those butty covers for that little white rear end:-) oh well, it was a good lesson learned......never run out of diapers over the weekend or before a Holiday.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Saved treasure

Moments like these are when I'm so thankful each time Charles wanted to sell his base ball cards I convinced him to save the treasure.

We've had moments when selling the base ball cards would have come in handy but each time he gets them out, we all enjoy hearing the stories of how he got the card, who signed it and how he left his most precious cards on a cruise, even though it was a bitter sweet time, the story is always so sweet when he tells it, cause it's like he still see's where he left them and how fresh it is of the little boys disappointment when they weren't there when they called the cruise line.


It's always nice to get the big gray box out and reminisce about the saved treasure. They always seem to bring the little kid out in all of us.

Memories like these you can not put a price on.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Common colds....HA!


What appeared to be common colds for both girls has turned into something so much bigger.

We took Brienna to the doctor last Friday because she kept saying "ah-wa pamper" and she wouldn't eat anything, come to find out the poor little thing had strep throat and a urinary tract infection. They checked Allie and she seemed to just have the sniffles and a little cough.

Wednesday rolled around and Brienna was feeling better but Aleia then was complaining of not feeling so well, I checked her fever and it was 103, due to her history of spiking febrile seizures we don't mess around when it comes to her fevers. I personally go into instant Mama panic mode.

Took Allie to the doctor today and she has her first ear infection, due to all the drainage from from sinuses.

The doctor gave us a nose spray for her and I had to convince this sweet little 4 year old that spraying solution up her nose was going to make things all better, at this point she thinks I'm crazy, and tells me this is the worse day of her life:-) I get the spray to go in her nose and she then tells me "Don't do that again mama, ur just trying to make me nervous".

It was hard enough getting the drops in her ears, I don't think I'll attempt the nose spray again unless her Daddy is around. She want's to be a diver so badly, just like her Daddy so I told her that her Daddy some times has to put things up his nose before he goes diving and she said "well I never want to dibe (dive) then.

Brienna seems to be over the worse, she isn't complaining about her "ah-wa pamper" and she's eating a little better.

Sure makes you appreciate when they are well......the only fresh air I've had since last Friday has been back and forth to the doctors and the pharmacy, and you have to know it is not an easy thing for me over here......the language barrier always frustrates me and truly gets me out of my comfort zone.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Reconnecting


It was so wonderful to go back 15 years later to the place where our ministry began. In 1994 surprisingly Charles joined the military out of Bible College (IBC) and received orders to Ramstein, Germany. Where Rev. Arlie Enis was the Missionary at that time to the Military Ministries.

Who would have ever known the path the Lord was taking us on would come full circle.

Jaime Manson and Danielle Hollinger. Two ladies I've had the privileged in knowing through the journey God has lead my husband and I down. So awesome to reconnect with the two of them and reminisce about great memories we made together. It was like we never missed a beat.


Courtnee Hollinger.....I babysat her when she was just a baby. Now look at how much she's grown, so talented, doing great in school and working for the church in an area she can.

My heart was full of joy to see Bethel, and to show Aleia and Brienna where their Mama and Daddy first began the journey we are now on.......Missionaries to Europe!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Monday, February 22, 2010

Finding more time

Lately I have been working on finding more time to pray, study, organize, read to my girls, practice the ABC's with Allie, be more patient and feed my family healthier choices.

As "women", (mothers and wives) we spend an incredible amount of time preparing grocery list, organizing meals for the week, grocery shopping, putting the groceries away, washing and cutting what needs to be put in baggies, preparing the meal, feeding it to our family and then cleaning up after the mess. Then the whole process begins again.

I have found an easy way to eliminate some of the stress, save more time and feed my family quicker and more healthy.

Monday's are my day of madness. I plan our meals, make the list, shop for the food, bring it home, pre- wash, pre- cut and organize 3 solid meals and 3 left over meals for my family to eat for lunch and dinner. Most Mondays are revolved around food and the kitchen.

Since I have found this system that works for my family, it has saved an enormous amount of time and money throughout the week.

Monday's are busy but the prep time for the week sure does make more time for the things that are just as important to keeping my family happy.

By preparing our meals in advance, it makes meal time so much easier and faster. When my girls say they are hungry it only takes 5 minutes to make a very delicious healthy plate to set before them and it taste as if I slaved over the stove for hours. This also is helpful for Charles when he comes in from a late night of work and is starving, he has a meal already prepared for him, he just has to eat it up.

This system not only enables me more time but it helps that I don't have to offer my family a Peanut butter sandwich, chips or any other unhealthy choice. Don't get me wrong we do eat these things occasionally but when I've taken the time to prepare properly it eliminates feeding my family what I call "empty fuel food"

What easy tips do you have in finding more time for yourself, your family, God and others?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wordless Wednesday


MY WIFE ROCKS EVERY DAY!

Well she is probably going to throw "rocks" at me today because I hijacked her blog to tell all her web friends that SHE ROCKS!

  • She is the best wife in the world! (I asked all of your husbands and they told me its true.)
  • She is the best mom in the world! (I asked your kids too.)
  • She is the best pastors wife in the world! (Ok, your getting the drift now.)
  • She is the best kisser in the world!
  • She is HOT!
  • She is so cute when she uses words that she just heard the wrong way!
  • She is so smart! (OK, sentence above seems to contradict this one but take it in context and lets stay on point.)
  • She is the best cook in the world! (This is simply a fact.)
  • She is so patient with me!
  • She is so faithful to me!
  • She is so loving to me!
  • She is so sensitive! (She is a German Indian so there are moments where the blades come out, but overall she is sensitive and i'm not just saying that because she scares me.)
  • She is so creative! (Especially with her blades.)
  • She is so gentle! (Well, like 27 days out of the month but there is that week. Gets a little edgy around here. Ha)
  • She smells like the sweetest roses!
Well I could go on and on but really I am probably already in trouble for what I have said so far as well as for hijacking her blog. Actually, I did not know that password until today when she was working on it with me looking over her shoulder. So this will probably be my last post.

LOVE YOU BABY! Be at peace my little German Indian.

I would like to wake up with all my hair.

MY WIFE ROCKS EVERYDAY!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Bedtime memories

These are the moments that we never want to fade from our memory. When it's cool that Daddy reads Bible stories, sings songs and cuddles with his little princesses.

Moments when they open up and tell us all that they are feeling not holding back anything.

Aleia loves her bedtime routine especially when Daddy is home.

She is totally a Daddy's girl and we wouldn't have it any other way. She feels secure when he is home, she depends on her Daddy to make all the boo-boo's go away, she knows he can fix anything and he makes bedtime stories up that have you on the edge of the bed, the whole time he's telling them.

Moments like these we will always remember and hope that as they grow older that bedtime remains a bonding time for learning and sharing.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Snow, Snow, go away!

This is our third winter in Vienna and the snow keeps falling. Just when you think it's almost gone and cleaned up, we get hit with another big snow fall.

The girls of course are loving it. Aleia could play in the snow all day and all night. She even had a little party out in the snow with all her little children as she calls them. (Barbies and figurines)



Snow, Snow go away come again another day, and make sure it's a day when we aren't in town;-)

Being from Michigan you would think the snow wouldn't bother me but it is so different there then it is here.

In Michigan, it can snow and by the next hour the roads, side walks, and paths are completely clear.....AND the sun shines!

When you hear Austria you might think lots of snow, but normally not in Vienna. The snow will lightly fall and it's gone. So they aren't real preparred it seems for this much snow and everyday. It's a mess, and pretty dangerous at times.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Faith:

Is not believing that God can.....

......It is knowing that He will!

I was very encouraged by a message I recently heard by a great leader in our church.

He said that just as we have faith that when we sit down in a chair it (will) sustain us, not believing it will but knowing it will, is the same kind of faith we must have in God, that when we call upon Him He will listen, when we ask of Him He will provide, and when we lean upon Him He will be there to hold us up.

That is the kind of faith I want to have.....not just to believe but also to KNOW!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Kid Quiz

Answers dictated by Aleia, age 4.

1. What is something Mom always says to you?
Don't touch

2. What makes Mommy happy?
For her daughter to be nice

3. What makes Mom sad?
When I makes a mess

4. How does mom make you laugh?
Tickles me

5. What was Mommy like as a kid?
I don't know

6. How old is your Mom?
(5)

7. How tall is she?
(holds hand up)

8. What is your mom's favorite thing to do?
Cook

9. What does your mom do when you're not around?
Goes Shopping

10. If your mom becomes famous, what would it be for?
A crocodile

11. What's your mom really good at?
Cooking

12. What's your mom not very good at?
Taking out the trash

13. What does your mommy do for a job?
Computer

14. What is your mom's favorite food?
Guacamole

15. What makes you proud of your mommy?
When you make me french toast

16. If your mom were a cartoon, whom would she be?
a bird from Cinderella

17. What do you and your mommy do together?
Make some food

18. How are you and your mom the same?
We're Daddy's girls

19. How are you and your mommy different?
Mom,this job is making me tired and I'm so tired of it

20. How do you know your mom loves you?
When she takes care of me

21. What does mommy like most about daddy?
When he is home

22. Where is your mom's favorite place to go?
The mall

Time for coffee

Here is my new beautiful coffee cup. There's nothing like drinking a yummy cup of coffee in a beautiful coffee cup. To me you don't need the atmosphere of a cafe as long as you have a gorgeous mug to drink it out of.

I was never a coffee drinker. Always loved the smell of coffee but was disgusted by the taste. I would do my best to enjoy a flavored coffee from Starbucks in attempt to be social but now I have to say I am a hard core coffee drinker, I still need a little pinch of sugar but can do without the cream, oh yes folks espresso, cappuccino the stronger the better, I love it and it's not just for social anymore.

The turning point for me was when we moved to Austria almost 2 1/2 years ago, I had to learn how to make coffee for different activity's for the church and one man came to me and said the coffee I made tasted like American Tea, well I said "SIR" then teach me how to make European coffee and he proceeded to teach me, and I've been making it like that ever since.

I think it's time for a cup of coffee, how about you?

Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Team!

They are all gone, it's just Aleia, Brienna and myself here on the home front. The Suppan family have left for the states to see family and to be appointed in Missouri as our first Austrian Missionaries. Bro. Nathan Hulsman is in Germany doing the AMTC Bible college orientation. We have around 42 registered students. Charles is off to Switzerland to stabilize a house work that has been going for many years without a full time Pastor.

I'm happy to say I'm sticking around here, I'm teaching in the morning to the great leaders of the church on "the spoken word.....being Positive in your SPEECH) looking forward to that. Also Aleia has Sunday school in the morning and she's thrilled that she knows her Bible verse. It was a hard one this week.

We are so happy to have such a great team, without them it wouldn't be possible. We make a super team and we do even better making memories. So thankful for our church family and can't wait until they all are back home safe.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Stand to be corrected

It was brought to my attention that our blue fish is named Holly not Lily:-) Lily was the last fish we had that we had to send down to his family in the big world below us cause he needed a fish doctor to help him get better.

Holly is the blue fish, I'd been calling that silly little fish Lily for months, I stand to be corrected.

H.O.T (Holly, Oscar and Tax) our 3 little fish.

Monday Charles and I were treated to a fabulous 5 course meal by a sweet dear saint in the church who works at the Arc Hotel. The meal and setting of the 2 days were just what we needed. Even though we were in Vienna just having a sitter for our girls and being out of our house was a good enough get away for me.

We were able to go to the SiSi museum, enjoy a good lunch, do some shopping and relax. It was a timely get away, a much needed one.

Thank you to Sis. Debbie and the Capule Family for making it possible to have such a great time.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

L.O.T

(L)ily...... is a fat blue fish who has taken over the castle as her home, she shares with no one and any other fish who dares to enter is immediately attacked.
(O)scar..... is so unique, as a baby he was transparent, not real aggressive, kind of makes his home in a corner and gets along with the other two pretty well. Now that he is older he changes daily in his color, I suppose it depends on his mood. He goes from Red with gold spots, transparent in the morning and in the night has a little blue/red color going on. Very NEAT.
(T)ax...... He's the cool fish, looks like a taxi cab, he's pretty aggressive and does the most damage in the tank, he makes little mountains out of the rocks each night. When we wake in the morning the tank looks like a completely different home.

L.O.T not to be mistaken for the Lot in the Bible but better none as Lily, Oscar and Tax, 3 little fish who have made their way into our little families heart.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Happy Birthday....Dad


Today my Dad turns one year older. He still doesn't act or seem a day over 29, he can keep up with the best of us. He's a hard working man, who has served in the Navy, retired from Saturn and is now doing many things for the Veterans department in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

I am so thankful to have such a fun, loving and understanding Dad. When I think no one understands me or I just need to smile I give him a call and he seems to know just what to say to brighten day.

The older I get and the more things that come my way, I am so thankful I have my Dad to lean on.

He always comes through for me. My most recent memory is when I had to move my Mom to Arkansas, he was there every step of the way for me. He helped me pack, drive, move and then set her home up all in one week. We made some great memories and I could have never gotten trough such an emotional and physically hard time without him by my side.

Happy Birthday Dad, your the best Dad to me.