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Friday, July 29, 2011

SiLlY sTrInG

While we were at camp last week my 8 yr old cousin/brother (bousin? cousiner? brosiner?) 
had a BIRTHDAY PARTAYYYYYYYYYYY! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!

But Kolby and I weren't at my parents for it because, obviously, we were at camp.

So we headed on to the good old Dollar General this week to look for something fun for Z.P.


And did we get a card?


NO!             
That's lame.


We got... 

SILLY STRING!!!!!!!!

enjoy...


 
 Hope it's biodegradable!




Z.P.'s feet when we were finished...




Dad helping me get the mess outta my hair. It was pretty stuck in there... 




what a mess.

Monday, July 25, 2011

A Summer of Traveling

 We got to see Andrew!!!
 SO glad we got to see Jess before she has that baby!!
 Oh yeah... guess we were glad to see Eli too ;)
 HOTTIE!
 Eli thought it should be explained?
 My kitty cat - Mavro! Took forever to get my mom to pronounce it correctly... :) 
 Enjoyed Sonic with my absolute bestie! Love seeing how God has grown her into such a leader this summer!
 BABY SHOWER!!!!!
 Greek Salad... first time making it in the States!
 So proud of Kolby! He made some awesome chicken!
 Tsatsiki... it was alright, haha... maybe I will improve...
 Van load of girls ready to go to CENTRIKID!
 My 2 cool roomies for the week!
We definitely danced every night! 


Just wanted to share some of our summer with ya! 
Let me know how your summer is going!

He Provides ENOUGH

"And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus" - Philippians 4:19

Year 2 of CentriKid was GREAT!

This year we took a group of 42 kids from Vidalia to Norman Park, GA for a week long camp. We weren't sure what to expect of our 2nd year at camp, but left with great memories of OMC (Organized Mass Chaos), late night talks, and Paca the pinata! One thing we were ready for though is being more than ready to dance our booties off! The atmosphere of camp is incredible and I really respect how they make it a fun atmosphere for both kids and adult leaders.

Adult Bible study happens while the kids are in their morning Bible studies, and this year the focus was on the Holy Spirit. The speaker focused on how the Holy Spirit is a powerful being and not just an "it". He talked to us about the importance of abiding in Him, and how basic things like reading God's Word and praying keep us in tune with Him. The Holy Spirit is something God taught us a lot about while we were in Greece so it was a great push to remember to really cling to that power.

The focus for the kids this year was that GOD PROVIDES! There were 3 weekdays where the theme taught....

Day 2 - God Provides Forgiveness
Day 3 - God Provides a Calling
Day 4 - God Provides Enough

I had 2 sweet girls (9 & 10 yr old) as my roomies for the week who asked great questions! We had talks about all kinds of things such as family members who were getting divorced, why the Holy Spirit is important, how God can be just and loving at the same time, and what kind of calling God might have for their lives. But that was all in between painting fingernails, drinking some yummy lemonade, and jumping on the beds! ;)

Last week was so fun. I kept getting asked if I was going to be back for camp next year... and I had to honestly answer with an "I don't know!" Who knows if we will visit GA this time next summer or not! Only my heavenly Father...

Who also knows our plans for next week. Obviously way better than we do...

We found out today that it looks like we won't be moving until at least August 12th now. About a week and a half shift in our plans. We wanted to get to New Orleans early so we can job search and get settled before classes start. We still will be getting there 10 days earlier now, but it's just not what we had planned. Please pray for us, we're a little frustrated and stressed with the situation but (as we learned last week) we know that God provides all that we need just when we need it. Not on our time. :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

qrustah




As you may have read in other posts, Kolby and I are moving to New Orleans this August (the 3rd to be exact!). So I told my best friend Krista, who is an incredible artist, to paint me a picture to hang in our new apartment. She told me an encouraging story behind it that is focused on listening to the Spirit no matter what journey or dream we are living. I'm so excited about it, I wanted to share! If she sees this I know she will kill me, but that's ok! It means so much to me! Hope you enjoy too!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

adopted




Adoption has been on my mind today.

Of course if you know us at all, you know that my husband and I love children, and we are passionate about adoption. We haven't started any kind of adoption process yet, and we're not pregnant, but we know that in God's timing He will give us children.

To be 20, I'm pretty young to be thinking about this kind of thing right?

Nope.

Adoption has played a huge part in my life already. My parents have custody of my 7 year old cousin named Zach. They have been traveling hard through many mountains and storms this past year to adopt Zach, but it still hasn't happened yet. I don't want to go into those details, but long story short - God has used this process to push and grow my parents, and they trust that He will officially give Zach over to them as their own one day. Strangely, watching my parents ride the roller coaster of adoption has just made Kolby and I yearn for those days to come for us!

Adoptions are sticky, rough, and tiresome. Biological parents are usually in awful situations, and the adopting parents can be hurting or anxious. The children sometimes deal with emotional and physical problems. It's a road that many people choose not to travel.

But Kolby and I want to travel that path. Why? Not because we are "strong" people. Not because we think we could be the best parents out there to some hurting babies that come through our door. We want to adopt because every single person on this earth has been designed by the Father who saved us from sin and from the father of lies, and on top of that gave me a new life!
Check this out:

In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us. - from Ephesians 1

Adoption is an incredible picture of what God did for His children! It's where the whole idea of "adoption" came from in the first place! How amazing!

If you're still not buying into this whole adoption thing... here are a few tips...

1. Read God's Word
- He will show you of the importance of taking care of orphans. What better way to do that than to adopt them as your own!?
2. Look online at local or global children who are orphans.
- Google images, go to sites like WorldVision.com... just look at some of the faces of these beautiful children who are in need. Make yourself aware of the hurting!
3. Check out Russell D. Moore's book Adopted for Life
- http://www.amazon.com/Adopted-Life-Priority-Adoption-Christian/dp/1581349114 We listened to it on audio book. Incredible.
4. This Love
- It's a song by Mandi Mapes wrote about adoption hoping to spark a fire in the heart's of Followers of Jesus who are called to adopt. There isn't a youtube video of the song, but look it up on itunes and download it. Good stuff.

Have an amazing adoption story you want to share? Have an orphan you want to give us? ;)

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Goodbye, Hello, Goodbye, Hello, Goodbye again....

Before we left for Greece in January, you would have thought somebody died.

Our parents, for the last 2 weeks before we jumped on the plane, unknowingly made us feel like we were attending our own funerals.

We were only leaving for 6 months... goodness gracious.

But I will give them this... that for the first year of our marriage we only lived an hour and a half away from them. So we saw them at least twice a month, if not more. So this was a big adjustment. Praise God for Skype and Facebook, but we all know it's still very different than really being with someone.

God has given Kolby and I personalities made for "letting go" and is daily turning us into people who are accustomed to "change". So for us it really wasn't too hard to say goodbye in January because we knew there would be a lot of new and refreshing hellos soon.

But the time came and flew by, and there we were saying goodbye again. This time it was harder. We had to leave brothers and sisters in Christ that we had grown so close to. And we had to leave many friends (who we loved so much) who still don't know the Jesus that we do. It was also harder because we knew what we were coming back to. A culture where we know we aren't meant to be forever... even if it is our "home culture."

But here we are again, settling back into America. For the summer we are house jumping between friends and family, which really hasn't been so bad. We're just ready for our own apartment again. By "we" I mean me... I simply need my space. We are adjusting to the food, lifestyle, and culture of South Georgia just like we knew we would... even when it seemed like we never could again.

Only to leave it all in a month! We are moving to New Orleans the first week of August (hopefully) for more school, ministry opportunities, friends, etc.... and we're really excited about it. But that means goodbyes to our family again. Can't help but wonder if it will feel like attending our own funeral again. As soon as we snuggle into GA we will be snatched up again.

But that's ok... means more hellos.

How do you handle change? How do you handle saying goodbye? Anyone else experience this same roller-coaster?

30 Day Challenge

Two friends back in Greece have encouraged a lot of people to start the...

30 Day Challenge

Sounds fancy, huh? Well it is pretty cool.

My friends formed a facebook group, challenging anyone who wanted to join, to be a little healthier this month by exercising at least 30 minutes a day and giving up some kind of food or drink (that they consume a lot of) that could possibly hurt their body.

I decided to give up cheese and pasta. Two things that I LOVE and I eat a good bit of...

I also modified the exercise challenge a little bit to fit my weight loss goals and lifestyle a little better and decided to do Zumba (on the Wii) at least 4 times a week. Also hopefully adding in a jog or swim on other days of the week that I didn't do that sassy dance workout.

Why am I sharing this?

Although there are a few difficult moments, it's overall a super easy way to jump start on a healthier lifestyle! Even when there are "bad" times you can write on the wall of the group to express your struggles and get some encouragement from people who are also doing the challenge! It's really neat to hear of the different ways people are going for a bike ride or doing their best to keep soda off their minds.

So... you want to join?

It's only been week 1 for us already in the group, so there is still time to join... as long as you go a week longer of course. Or maybe you should be the one to create this kind of group for your friends and family! It really is such a great way to start being a little more disciplined about your health. I serve a God who has me traveling, moving, and working to do His will. I want to glorify Him with my body by doing what I can to take care of it, so I can do what He desires me to do!

If you already have a neat health plan, share that with me!
If not, consider taking the 30 Day Challenge!