Thursday, April 24, 2008


Our trip so far has been fast! We had an awesome experience flying on Singapore Air, which I am sure most of you have read about on Dougle's blog. The day after we arrived, the first thing we did was drop off our passports and visa applications at the consulate in Houston. It is supposed to take 7-10 working days to process, but we just received confirmation that they have been processed. We will pick them up as soon as we arrive back in Houston. We are still praying for a year long visa with no restrictions.

We spent our first few days with Guy, Nancy and Aspen Stover. They are close friends of ours who graciously took care of us while we went through some jet lag. We all woke up at 4am the first morning. Of course, by 7pm that night, we were wondering just how late we really needed to stay up!! We did pretty good about not taking a nap, except for day two- which was by far the worst as far as jet lag was concerned. But we had a good time hanging out with the Stover family and look forward to spending more conscious time with them on our way out of the country!

The next stop was Dallas. Because of our trip dates, we were able to attend a missions dinner and mini seminar with Missions Resource Network (MRN). Our team was able to be together, with Livia and David coming in from Lubbock, as well as Rob and Denyce and their boys from Phoenix. On Sunday, we attended Prestoncrest church of Christ. They have given our team some one time support and are looking into the possibilities of supporting David and Olivia. We had a great day there, and were even able to meet a Russian couple who had come into the States to speak at a lectureship. Who knew that we'd have an opportunity to learn our newfound Russian language (faltering as it is) in the United States?!

On Sunday evening we flew into Lubbock. Canaan recognized familiar sites when we arrived at my parent's house. He loved being able to play in a familiar environment and around familiar people. My mom calls these familiar people his "fan club," because we all just sit around, watching him play, applauding his good behavior and smart antics, etc. He is enjoying it immensely! However, just before leaving Dallas, Canaan fell sick with a nasty little bug. He had three runny diapers in three hours. The next day, it was coming from both ends. Unlike most toddlers, he graciously shared; therefore, my mom, Dougle, David, and now Beth have all been sick with the same thing. Our last few days have been filled with laundry and disinfectant! Thankfully, it seems like everyone is on the up-swing (except Beth, who just contracted this) and we hope to have the house sick-free in a few days. Keep our health in your prayers.

Overall, our trip so far has gone fast and furious, as expected. We were unexpectedly out a few days with the sickness, but hope to get caught up on seeing those people and doing those things we want to get done before heading back to Moscow. We head to Houston on Monday evening, and back to Russia on Thursday, May 1st. We hope to see those of you we can at some point, but hope the rest of you are doing well. We love you all!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Ornery Boy

I added a pole today on the right side of this blog. It goes with this post. Cast your votes!

As Canaan gets older, he is more of a joy every day! OK, he is also more of a challenge too! It all started about two weeks before his first birthday. He started figuring out this 'choice' thing. He finally got old enough that he was able to start turning the pages on the books faster, play with the particular toys he was interested in, and not do everything Mommy and Daddy asked. So, here we are, 5 months later, and he is just choosing to exercise his way more than ours.

I guess that is just part of growing up. Mommy and Daddy are having to find ways to convince him that he must do what we say, or else. I think the hardest part about being a parent is being consistent. I am learning that is the only way that he will know I mean what I say. Everyday I feel like it just gets more challenging in this area. I am sure most of you understand what I am saying.

However, no matter how challenging some days can be, each day is a joy. In ways he is permitted to choose how he wants to do things, it is cool to see what he chooses. It is funny to see his favorite book change, his favorite toys become different favorites, his speech develop, etc. You can see little bits of Mommy, Daddy, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc in his personality. It is great!

One thing it all does is make me develop more of an understanding and respect for God. He IS consistent: I can always count on what He says. He loves us, no matter how many wrong choices we make. I also have learned that saying sorry and asking for forgiveness is a necessary step in changing my attitude so that I don't make those same mistakes over and over. It also shows Him that I am serious about my sin and desire to change. There are many more things too. I love how having a kid is growing my relationship with God. I pray that I may always grow closer to Him as I strive to follow in the steps of Jesus, no matter where they lead!

On a lighter note: Canaan ate a whole handful of dirt the other day for the first time. Yuk! Thankfully, it didn't kill him, so no worries!

Friday, April 4, 2008

My Classmates

I thought I would introduce you to a few of my classmates.

The first picture from left to right:
Dulce (from Brazil-she is working here as a missionary with the Catholic church)
Alicia (from Texas- she helps train Russian preachers in jobs that will help them be able to preach and support themselves; she also wants to work with Russian street children)
Yulker (from Turkey- she is married to a Turkish man who works here with grocery store chains)
Jung-Ki (from Korea- he is learning Russian so he can work with his uncle in his construction business here in Moscow)
Terry (from France- he recently moved here with his Russian wife and daughter)

The second picture is of Jung-Ki, Jin-Kiong (she is from Korea and wants to be a translator), and I. They came over one night for dinner. They are both classmates of mine.

The last picture is of me with Navar. She is my Syrian friend from school. She is here with her parents (her father works at the Syrian embassy). We walk to the metro together most days since we are going the same general direction.

Hope you enjoy. I have a lot of fun with my classmates. We've gotten to know each other well. A new classmate named Camella from Romania is not pictured. There are two others who are 'in' our class, but don't come very often. We've had others come in and out as well. It is an ever-changing environment; we have new teachers and new classmates periodically. But, there are a few of us who've been there since the beginning. Anyway, this is my life Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9:30 to 2:50. I'll be in classes for a while longer. During the summer Dougle and I will both be using a private tutor (since the prices for language classes in the summer jumps, since that is when a lot of people come in and take). Then, we hope that Dougle can start up classes in the Fall to help finish up some of his grammar learning, while I continue with the private tutor.

Keep my classmates and I in your prayers!