Friday, July 27, 2012

Trusting God - Lessons from Day 1

At the airport
Do you trust God?  Over the past two years God has taught me a lot about trust, but I know that I still have a long way to go.  Today was a perfect example of that ongoing lesson.  Today I learned that trusting God is seeing the face of a student you taught two years earlier waiting at the airport in an unknown city ready to help guide you to your next destination.  Trusting God is getting into a taxi with your two kids with some people that you’ve never met who don’t speak your language.  Trusting God is holding your three year old tightly in your lap in the back of the taxi while it is pouring down rain and cars are weaving in and out of traffic.  Trusting God is leaving your husband (and the only Spanish speaker in your family) at the bus station with half of your luggage while the other half of your belongings ride off in a car with another stranger.  Trusting God is walking into your new home with “basic” furnishings which happens to only include the kitchen sink in the kitchen (who needs a stove or refrigerator)! 
Our kitchen
Trusting God is waiting for over two hours for your husband and the rest of your luggage to show up at the home of these people you’ve never met before.  Trusting God is also sitting down to a hot, delicious Mexican meal after being on airplanes all day that don’t serve food.  Trusting God is being fed by perfect strangers who have, without hesitation, adopted you into their family because you are a brother and sister in Christ.  Trusting God is when these same people go through their belongings to make sure you have pillows, blankets, and sheets to sleep on the first night in a new country.  Trusting God is knowing that no detail is too big or too small for Him.  Do I trust God?  You bet I do!    

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all you ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6

Monday, July 16, 2012


Yesterday, Kieran and I had the chance to take a ride down memory lane.  We were driving around our old stomping grounds here in Columbia, SC and I asked him if he wanted to drive by our old house.  At first he said no because he thought it would make him too sad.  Then he changed his mind and said that he thought he'd like to go by and see it.  We turned into our old neighborhood and he pointed out the sign that had been repainted.  Then we drove by the "casa linda" (pretty house) as the kids called it.  Actually, Kris and I thought it was probably the ugliest house in the neighborhood since it was painted boy scout blue with bright yellow trim.  Children are much more forgiving!  We turned the corner and Kieran said, "Our cul-de-sac!"  We drove to the end and parked across the street.  We saw the perennials that we'd planted in the front yard, the porch swing that Kris had built me for Mother's Day, and even our "Welcome" sign that still hung on the front door.  It looked like they were using the planter in the backyard as a garden just as we'd done for so many summers.  There were a few new things that showed the new owners were making this their home with many new memories.  When we drove off, Kieran said with tears in his eyes, "We probably won't ever live there again, will we?"  I said, "Probably not, but, Kieran, this will always be your hometown."

"In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also." John 14:2-3 (KJV)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Hightlights of our Year in Dallas - Part 2 (Elyse)

Our sweet, fun Elyse!
"Anything you can do, I can do better..."  This song often plays through my head as I see Elyse interacting with the world around her.  We moved to Dallas last year with a 2 going on 3 year old and we are leaving with a 3 going on 13 year old!  Like her older brother, Elyse has done so well with all the transitions of our family.  She misses her friends in South Carolina, but God blessed her with many friends in Texas.  She went from never going to preschool to going 5 days a week from 7:45-12:45.  She had wonderful teachers who helped her make this transition.  She can sing her ABC's and know how to count to 20 (the teens get a little mixed up, but all the numbers show up eventually)!  She can even write the E, L, & Y in her name (the S is still a little tricky).

Elyse has an imagination like no other.  In addition to her real life friends, she also has a slew of imaginary friends.  They have very interesting names like Mena and Kalenda.  Her favorite imaginary friend is "grandpa".  Grandpa often disagrees with mommy and daddy's rules for Elyse.  A common excuse we hear around here is, "Well, my grandpa said I don't have to (go to bed, take a bath, come inside, etc.)!"  She also has friends already set up in Mexico.  Speaking of Mexico, Elyse is ready to go!  Almost daily she asks when we are moving to Mexico.  We are so thankful that she enjoyed her time there last fall and desires to go back.

Our pretty ballerina
After Christmas, Elyse decided that she wanted to take ballet and thankfully, God provided a ballet class at the same rec center and at the same time as Kieran's Karate class.  We signed her up and a star was born!  Elyse really enjoyed her class.  She was very bashful at first, but I was surprised at how much she learned and remembered from week to week.  Whenever music is playing, she wants to be up and dancing.  Thankfully, she had the chance to perform in a mini-recital in March since we weren't there for the big recital at the end of June.  She said when she moves to Mexico, she wants to take Mexican dance lessons. 

Even though Elyse pretends to be shy at times, she is our fearless child who throws caution to the wind!  When we experienced our first tornado evacuation at the beginning of April, Elyse wasn’t scared at all.  She told Kieran, “Don’t worry, this will be fun!”  Even though her fearlessness has led to some bumps, bruises, and two trips to the doctor, we trust that God is preparing her for a life full of adventures.  Our prayer for Elyse is that she will continue to grow and learn and that we will have wisdom in parenting her strong-will! 

That's our girl!