18 months

We should probably blog more than once every six months. But if you want to know more, sign up for the prayer list we send that out every month.
This week we celebrated our 18 month anniversary of living in France. By celebrate I mean we acknowledged 18 months have passed since that morning when I had my first encounter with the dark Paris winter. The morning I woke Tony up and said,” I think all our clocks are messed up its almost 9 am and the sun still isn’t up”. Nope, clocks weren’t wrong. Welcome to Paris in the winter where the sunrise is very late, if it decides to come out at all.
So, initially I had thought about a blog post full of recent successes and then today occurred. Tony had back to back meetings all day, interns were off to help with various events, Fayth had a couple of events and Hannah and I would be home alone most of the day. As an introvert with a house full of people I was really looking forward to this day. The morning was going swimmingly as I picked Fayth up from her slumber party. Fayth even said she could understand what I was saying as I chatted with the other moms. Then the 24 hour clock struck. As an American, I struggle with the 24 hour clock. In fact last summer it was so bad Hannah’s eye doctor started calling us a few minutes prior to our appointments to make sure we had the right time. Hannah had wanted to have a couple of friends over and the plan was they were both supposed to come at 1:00/13h and leave around 3:00/15h. Again, perfect from my introverted being. Well, one friend came at 1:00/13h, and left at 3:00/15h. All the time we were wondering where the 2nd friend was. Just as friend one walked out the back gate the front gate bell was ringing. Friend number 2 arrived at 3pm/15h. Not sure how, but screwed that one up. Plus Hannah’s favorite thing to do with her friends is make American cookies, well we made two batches of American cookies today.
While the friend debacle was occurring, Jenn, our teammate, was graciously taking Fayth to a birthday party on the other side of town. Jenn was calling because she couldn’t find the house. Often in France houses our tucked away on side streets or numbered in a way that our American minds don’t understand. Street signs are difficult to find. Jenn was looking for a phone number, well the invitation only had 8 digits not the required 10 digits to make a call.
Never fear, Jenn was awesome and Fayth was delivered safely to her birthday party.
Just as I received the text that Fayth was there, I realized there was no end time on the invitation. Well, now I don’t really know where Fayth is and I don’t know when to pick her up plus Hannah has a friend at the house who will be staying till 5:30. All of this wouldn’t have been so bad as Fayth is fairly responsible but in this digital age she doesn’t know her phone number by memory.
Insert panicking mom moment. Well as soon as Hannah’s friend left I prepared myself to walk down to the party hoping that it was over but realizing I could just be going to find out what time to pick Fayth up. I knew if this was the case, Fayth would not be happy, (the anger of an embarrassed 11 year old can be somewhat frightening) as right now life is all about conforming and not looking different from everyone else.
Well finding Fayth meant some wandering and a desperate phone call to Jenn. Then a blessing from God, a face I recognized. One of the other moms was walking in a door and I knew she had a daughter in Fayth’s class. Praise God not only was this a familiar face leading me to my destination but it also meant I was on time. Off I dashed practically chasing this mother down in fear I would lose sight of her I some windy Paris side street. Well after the required politeness, we were all safe and sound at home by 6:30. Nothing on my list was accomplished and I was left frustrated and somewhat confused by all the mishaps of the day.
So after all of that what progress have we made in 18 months.
Well first accomplishment, Fayth said my French wasn’t too bad today. Yesterday I was celebrating my French as I talked with Hannah’s occupational therapist about treatment plans and how we could tell if she was making progress. I have made slow progress into some social circles. A few mom’s initiate short conversations and there about 12 people who I can say bonjour to on any given day and they say bonjour back. We know we have created a little buzz in the community as other English speaking families ask about the rumors they hear about us.
We are trying new things, we are trying English camp and a English game night. We successfully gave away 2000 glow sticks (it was amazing how skeptical many people were to take something free). We have a full house for June and July, we will steadily have 2 – 4 additional people with us.
Others will be staying elsewhere as a couple of families a one small group will be coming through Paris to serve. We have helped to find volunteers to help serve the missionaries here. We were so grateful to the Scharnberg family for painting a bathroom that had a water leak and needed some freshening up. Our interns have washed windows, cleaned awnings, and helped with childcare for the team of missionaries, handed out 2000 glowsticks. The interns have gotten involved in some of the small group activity at Trinity and our participating in a conversational English class, and a lunch that provides a free meal to those in need. Tony and I have other opportunities to serve presented to us and we are praying through those opportunities.
So 18 months and I can say this is my home on earth. It is a place that continues to grow on me (although some days more slowly than others). I am excited to see what another 18 months will bring. The lives that will be changed. How I will be changed. How my family will be changed. These are the things that make all the struggles worthwhile.

Jul 1, 2013 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments

18 months

We should probably blog more than once every six months. But if you want to know more, sign up for the prayer list we send that out every month.
This week we celebrated our 18 month anniversary of living in France. By celebrate I mean we acknowledged 18 months have passed since that morning when I had my first encounter with the dark Paris winter. The morning I woke Tony up and said,” I think all our clocks are messed up its almost 9 am and the sun still isn’t up”. Nope, clocks weren’t wrong. Welcome to Paris in the winter where the sunrise is very late, if it decides to come out at all.
So, initially I had thought about a blog post full of recent successes and then today occurred. Tony had back to back meetings all day, interns were off to help with various events, Fayth had a couple of events and Hannah and I would be home alone most of the day. As an introvert with a house full of people I was really looking forward to this day. The morning was going swimmingly as I picked Fayth up from her slumber party. Fayth even said she could understand what I was saying as I chatted with the other moms. Then the 24 hour clock struck. As an American, I struggle with the 24 hour clock. In fact last summer it was so bad Hannah’s eye doctor started calling us a few minutes prior to our appointments to make sure we had the right time. Hannah had wanted to have a couple of friends over and the plan was they were both supposed to come at 1:00/13h and leave around 3:00/15h. Again, perfect from my introverted being. Well, one friend came at 1:00/13h, and left at 3:00/15h. All the time we were wondering where the 2nd friend was. Just as friend one walked out the back gate the front gate bell was ringing. Friend number 2 arrived at 3pm/15h. Not sure how, but screwed that one up. Plus Hannah’s favorite thing to do with her friends is make American cookies, well we made two batches of American cookies today.
While the friend debacle was occurring, Jenn, our teammate, was graciously taking Fayth to a birthday party on the other side of town. Jenn was calling because she couldn’t find the house. Often in France houses our tucked away on side streets or numbered in a way that our American minds don’t understand. Street signs are difficult to find. Jenn was looking for a phone number, well the invitation only had 8 digits not the required 10 digits to make a call.
Never fear, Jenn was awesome and Fayth was delivered safely to her birthday party.
Just as I received the text that Fayth was there, I realized there was no end time on the invitation. Well, now I don’t really know where Fayth is and I don’t know when to pick her up plus Hannah has a friend at the house who will be staying till 5:30. All of this wouldn’t have been so bad as Fayth is fairly responsible but in this digital age she doesn’t know her phone number by memory.
Insert panicking mom moment. Well as soon as Hannah’s friend left I prepared myself to walk down to the party hoping that it was over but realizing I could just be going to find out what time to pick Fayth up. I knew if this was the case, Fayth would not be happy, (the anger of an embarrassed 11 year old can be somewhat frightening) as right now life is all about conforming and not looking different from everyone else.
Well finding Fayth meant some wandering and a desperate phone call to Jenn. Then a blessing from God, a face I recognized. One of the other moms was walking in a door and I knew she had a daughter in Fayth’s class. Praise God not only was this a familiar face leading me to my destination but it also meant I was on time. Off I dashed practically chasing this mother down in fear I would lose sight of her I some windy Paris side street. Well after the required politeness, we were all safe and sound at home by 6:30. Nothing on my list was accomplished and I was left frustrated and somewhat confused by all the mishaps of the day.
So after all of that what progress have we made in 18 months.
Well first accomplishment, Fayth said my French wasn’t too bad today. Yesterday I was celebrating my French as I talked with Hannah’s occupational therapist about treatment plans and how we could tell if she was making progress. I have made slow progress into some social circles. A few mom’s initiate short conversations and there about 12 people who I can say bonjour to on any given day and they say bonjour back. We know we have created a little buzz in the community as other English speaking families ask about the rumors they hear about us.
We are trying new things, we are trying English camp and a English game night. We successfully gave away 2000 glow sticks (it was amazing how skeptical many people were to take something free). We have a full house for June and July, we will steadily have 2 – 4 additional people with us.
Others will be staying elsewhere as a couple of families a one small group will be coming through Paris to serve. We have helped to find volunteers to help serve the missionaries here. We were so grateful to the Scharnberg family for painting a bathroom that had a water leak and needed some freshening up. Our interns have washed windows, cleaned awnings, and helped with childcare for the team of missionaries, handed out 2000 glowsticks. The interns have gotten involved in some of the small group activity at Trinity and our participating in a conversational English class, and a lunch that provides a free meal to those in need. Tony and I have other opportunities to serve presented to us and we are praying through those opportunities.
So 18 months and I can say this is my home on earth. It is a place that continues to grow on me (although some days more slowly than others). I am excited to see what another 18 months will bring. The lives that will be changed. How I will be changed. How my family will be changed. These are the things that make all the struggles worthwhile.

Jul 1, 2013 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments

One Year!

Roos-003

So it’s been one year. One long quick year. I understand that the year didn’t pass any slower or faster than any other year but today we all looked at each other and said, “Has it already been a year?” and “Has it only been a year?”  We just sent out our Christmas letter with a few of the things we have done over the year but I thought I would blog about about the emotional roller coaster that has been this year.

The language learning roller coaster. It starts out slow as you climb the big first hill. You struggle to say words like hello and ask for the time. You then reach the top and start to pick up speed. You can tell people you like to go to the movies and you can order a coffee without stuttering. Then they another hill and you slow down you start to turn. Everything you learned before starts to feel different. Another crest of the hill and you think you are further along. The next hill doesn’t seem to big but you  realize you were looking at it from a distance. It’s a bigger hill than you thought and there are twists and turns again you make it to the top but this time the ride down doesn’t seem as fun. It’s the up and down part. You are good at one thing but worse at another. You have a conversation with a neighbor about living in France but you fail the grammar test.  You catch your breath and breathe deep hoping not to vomit. The next hill is coming and you are still going. It’s a long ride. But on you go…

The parenting roller coaster. This is the ride I (Tony) have struggled with the most this year. My highs have been when my daughters have been low and their highs have been when I was low. Being a student has meant there is has been very few nights away from home. It has been overall a good thing but a hard thing to get used to after being up and running as much as I was in the USA. I can’t say I haven’t vomited on this ride and lost my hat along the way. But it has been a ride I have learned to ride and hang on at the right moments.

The cultural roller coaster. Things are different and that’s okay. Things don’t always work, look, taste, feel or seem the same and that’s okay. I have never liked shopping but add another language, slower checkout lines and a ton more people and I dislike it more. Finding the things that can be tension relieving can be difficult. Things that used to soothe can now be frustrating. Personality is wiped clean and rebuilt as you learn a language and culture. Humor is tough to find. Emotions are raw but each moment God provides His grace. And His Grace is always sufficient.

Life is a roller coaster. But it’s a good ride.

Dec 28, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision, Uncategorized | 0 comments

One Year!

Roos-003

So it’s been one year. One long quick year. I understand that the year didn’t pass any slower or faster than any other year but today we all looked at each other and said, “Has it already been a year?” and “Has it only been a year?”  We just sent out our Christmas letter with a few of the things we have done over the year but I thought I would blog about about the emotional roller coaster that has been this year.

The language learning roller coaster. It starts out slow as you climb the big first hill. You struggle to say words like hello and ask for the time. You then reach the top and start to pick up speed. You can tell people you like to go to the movies and you can order a coffee without stuttering. Then they another hill and you slow down you start to turn. Everything you learned before starts to feel different. Another crest of the hill and you think you are further along. The next hill doesn’t seem to big but you  realize you were looking at it from a distance. It’s a bigger hill than you thought and there are twists and turns again you make it to the top but this time the ride down doesn’t seem as fun. It’s the up and down part. You are good at one thing but worse at another. You have a conversation with a neighbor about living in France but you fail the grammar test.  You catch your breath and breathe deep hoping not to vomit. The next hill is coming and you are still going. It’s a long ride. But on you go…

The parenting roller coaster. This is the ride I (Tony) have struggled with the most this year. My highs have been when my daughters have been low and their highs have been when I was low. Being a student has meant there is has been very few nights away from home. It has been overall a good thing but a hard thing to get used to after being up and running as much as I was in the USA. I can’t say I haven’t vomited on this ride and lost my hat along the way. But it has been a ride I have learned to ride and hang on at the right moments.

The cultural roller coaster. Things are different and that’s okay. Things don’t always work, look, taste, feel or seem the same and that’s okay. I have never liked shopping but add another language, slower checkout lines and a ton more people and I dislike it more. Finding the things that can be tension relieving can be difficult. Things that used to soothe can now be frustrating. Personality is wiped clean and rebuilt as you learn a language and culture. Humor is tough to find. Emotions are raw but each moment God provides His grace. And His Grace is always sufficient.

Life is a roller coaster. But it’s a good ride.

Dec 28, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Thankgiving

We are thankful. Truly thankful. One year ago on Monday we headed for three weeks of intense cross cultural preparation  It was much needed and prepared us for moving but there was still so much we did not expect.

We are thankful that we have been given opportunity to pioneer the work of ENvision Paris.

We are thankful that we have truly enjoyed life here. Yes it has been hard and yes today it was hard to see family and friends together when we could not be there. But we are thankful to be joining a solid group of new friends and family here in Paris this Saturday for a Thanksgiving meal and time together.

We are thankful that we are here learning a language that, while difficult, will allow us share the Gospel of Christ with the people around us.

We are thankful that today during class we were able to understand a complete new article.

We are thankful for Facetime and Phone Calls.

We are thankful for streaming sites allowing us to watch a parade and a game.

We are thankful for rest.

We are thankful for you.

Be Thankful.

Nov 22, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments

Thankgiving

We are thankful. Truly thankful. One year ago on Monday we headed for three weeks of intense cross cultural preparation  It was much needed and prepared us for moving but there was still so much we did not expect.

We are thankful that we have been given opportunity to pioneer the work of ENvision Paris.

We are thankful that we have truly enjoyed life here. Yes it has been hard and yes today it was hard to see family and friends together when we could not be there. But we are thankful to be joining a solid group of new friends and family here in Paris this Saturday for a Thanksgiving meal and time together.

We are thankful that we are here learning a language that, while difficult, will allow us share the Gospel of Christ with the people around us.

We are thankful that today during class we were able to understand a complete new article.

We are thankful for Facetime and Phone Calls.

We are thankful for streaming sites allowing us to watch a parade and a game.

We are thankful for rest.

We are thankful for you.

Be Thankful.

Nov 22, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments

November 20th Thankful

Here is today’s list of thankfulness:

Fayth: I am thankful that I now know that I will be swimming the 100 m Dos in the swim meet on Sunday. (100 meter backstroke)

Hannah: I am thankful that I did not get laughed at at school today.

Raeni: I am thankful that I have very encouraging people from around the world supporting me. Thanks for those of you who sent cards or encouraging notes.

Tony: I am thankful for a home that provides sanctuary and respite after a long day of language school.

Thanks again for reading!

Nov 20, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments

November 20th Thankful

Here is today’s list of thankfulness:

Fayth: I am thankful that I now know that I will be swimming the 100 m Dos in the swim meet on Sunday. (100 meter backstroke)

Hannah: I am thankful that I did not get laughed at at school today.

Raeni: I am thankful that I have very encouraging people from around the world supporting me. Thanks for those of you who sent cards or encouraging notes.

Tony: I am thankful for a home that provides sanctuary and respite after a long day of language school.

Thanks again for reading!

Nov 20, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments

More Thankfulness

Today I (tony) took some time to pray through our monthly support statement. I am so stinking humbled that you who give have believed in what God is doing and believed in what God is going to do. Thank you so much for your heart and for your gifts. We are eternally grateful for your gifts. and we believe that because you have given lives will be changed for eternity.

Tony: I am thankful for opportunities to speak and dream about the future. While sometimes what God has laid before use seems like a huge task, I am thankful that we are called to be a part of it and called to pioneer an new effort here in Paris alongside a great group of people who are cheering for us and the work of God to be accomplished.

Raeni: I am thankful that since we arrived here we have not been overtly sick and in the doctors office with flu, allergies, or injuries. Thank you Jesus for health.

Fayth: I am thankful that Sunday I swim in my first swim meet in France.

Hannah:  I am thankful for blah, blah, blah (that is how she started) Then she thanked God for a friend at Fayth’s swim practice. Hannah worked her tail off to finish her homework before Fayth’s swim meet so she could go and play with her new friend. This time her new friend had other friends with her, so Hannah and three French girls played with Hannah’s dolls and lamb. Pray for these friends who Hannah has connected with.

 

Thanks again Tony.

Nov 19, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments

Thanks day ?

I forgot to keep count.

Raeni was supposed to blog for us yesterday but decided it more important to learn the 10 different ways to say however in French.

So today we are twice as thankful for the little things.

Hannah is thankful for a better day at school today. Yesterday was rough with someone saying something about her not knowing French. But today was a field trip day to a museum so that and nobody laughed at her.

Fayth is thankful for taco pizza.

Raeni is thankful for time with our teammates.

Tony is thankful that today went quickly and the weekend is upon us. We are headed to the Envision House to put the table back together so we can host the Paris team and some other guests for Thanksgiving next Saturday. Yes we know Thanksgiving in the States is on Thursday but apparently neither the government of France nor the school which we goes to offers us the day off.

We truly are thankful even while things are difficult and tiring.

Nov 16, 2012 | Posted by in ENvision | 0 comments
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