Monday, May 31, 2010

Out to Lunch...for 9 days

Hubby will be in Israel for a little more than a week, and I am staying home (in Ukraine) with the kids. David and another missionary are meeting a group from America to hold a conference for the families of fallen Israeli soldiers.

David took our laptop (hence, internet) with him. So, you will not be hearing from me for a while. Please keep us in your prayers as we each do what God has for us during this time.

Enjoy the silence :) because I am sure there will be lots of great pictures and stories upon his return!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Camp property, Part 2

In this post you will find the indoor pictures of the camp property we will be renting for two weeks this summer. [I also wanted to clarify from yesterday's post that the financial burden of hearing camp lies on the hearing church, and the financial burden of the deaf camp lies on the deaf church.]

We were shown a two-story building (sorry, no picture... can you believe it?!) where our church group will be sleeping... girls on the second floor, guys on the first floor. Here are some pictures from inside that building...

BELOW: Yikes! The toilets...! Ahem... this is a normal sight to us. I am thinking that we are going to have to somehow put up privacy dividers... and some toilet lids would be nice...

BELOW: Looks like we are going to have to figure out how to hang the shower head...

BELOW: Two adjoining dining halls... (We will be on a schedule, sharing these areas with other groups).

BELOW: The auditorium where services will be held. We will be adding chairs to make enough room for everyone...

BELOW: One of the shower rooms... please don't faint! We are going to have to add dividers, and I was thinking that some floor mats would be nice for those who do not have shower shoes. So long as there is warm water coming from those spickets (which they promised), and if you keep your eyes half closed {grin}, then maybe the feeling of getting clean will prevail!

Camp on the mission field.... Care to join us?

[I am laughing hysterically right now because this will be my 6th year to do this... and dare I even mention.... WITH KIDS?!] God always gives grace, and just yesterday my 8-year-old was jumping up and down at the realization that he will get to stay overnight just with the guys in only three years, since we invite ages 11-19 as campers! Now that thought makes me want to faint!
And, I believe it is fair to mention that those of us who live in the city will be returning home to sleep in our own beds and use our own showers at night. Does that seem totally unfair... to know that we are going to be more comfortable than everyone else? Actually, we would all be staying the whole time except that it gives us a huge price break if we are not sleeping there at night.
Ahhhh, now I feel better for confessing...!
Questions? Comments?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Camp property, Part 1

If you've been following my blog for awhile now, you will know that our church bought land for camp last year. Since it will be several years before we will be using that land (it is still an open plot... next phase: locate a water source), we are going to be renting again.

We went today to look over the territory of a place we have never been, which is located about 15 minutes outside of our city. In this post, I will show you the outdoor pictures. In the next post you will see everything else.

Our tour begins at the entrance with the sign "Camp Mountain Creek:"
This camp is actually a sports camp, so the teens will not lack for physical activities, as you can see in the pictures below:
Fenced-in soccer field Basketball court
Physical training equipment
All three of the above-mentioned sports areas shown together

This place is HUGE. The rest of the pictures are just various pictures I took while we walked around. Unfortunately we will not be getting the entire place to ourselves. I don't believe we have ever had this privilege completely (which is one reason why we have decided to build our own camp). So, I guess I should be asking you to pray that they will not be able to find other renters {hee hee} or at least that the other groups that come will be nice. Honestly, I really want you to pray that we will be a testimony to anyone who may be our "neighbor" that week.

WARNING: There are a lot of pictures below! But, I am doing this for the benefit of my readers who will be coming... (A sports camp was already in full swing)

We will actually be using this camp two weeks in a row: the first week: deaf teens / the second week: hearing teens. The cost to use these facilities is $40 per camper. We estimate that it costs about $50-$60 per camper once we have added in the cost of t-shirts (which we give every camper each year), booklets, camp "store" items, repair work (you'll see what I mean in the next post), and various other items that we provide.
Ukrainian teens could never afford $50-$60, so we only ask that they pay $25. Every summer, year after year, God blesses us and always provides! Now, I won't pretend that we don't get nervous about the finances, but last year we ended up only $40 short.
And, I have no doubt that God will work another miracle this year...

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


We have poppies growing all over the place these days! This is one of my favorite recent pictures... My three kids in a field of poppies with the city of Simferopol, Ukraine behind them... Breathtaking!
But, the reason I am posting about poppies today is because I found some slipped under the bathroom door two days ago. When I finished showering, I saw them... and then a proud, grinning boy when I walked out the door. Yep, my 8-year-old son had slipped them under the door for me to find them as a surprise...
I love having kids who love to surprise their Mommy with spring flowers! I hope they never outgrow this!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Missionary Monday

I am starting a new feature to my blog that I have decided to call "Missionary Monday." The idea is really very simple.... Every Monday I will post something about missions, being a missionary, etc...

Although you'll see lots of pictures of my sweet kids, our home, and things we do, I want to keep the focus of this blog on missions. I also want you see see what it is like for us to be missionaries here so you can, in a small way, live this adventure with us!

This week I decided to post a poem about missionary wives, and I hope that it will be an encouragement to my missionary wife friends! This little laminated paper was a gift that I received a couple of years ago from the dear ladies of Maranatha Baptist Church of Western Oaks in Oklahoma City. Thank you, ladies!
Missionary Wives
Missionaries and their wives are a very special breed.
They sacrifice their homeland, to plant the gospel seed.
His part is done in preaching, with the Word that God hath spoken.
While the wife takes care of others, with a heart that's truly broken.
He must use sound Bible wisdom, as he seeks to do his part.
While she prays for him and others, with a kind and tender heart.
He works all day with natives, bringing God into their lives,
While she does her wifely duties, and the years go passing by.
They labor in the harvest, seeking to win each precious soul.
While people they love and serve with, don't really care or know.
The work is hard and long, as they press on through the days.
And the wife who is the helpmeet, receives very little praise.
For it's the man who is the preacher, and establishes the work of God.
But without his wife beside him, foreign lands he'd never trod.
So the wife is very special, as they work where God does lead.
And Jesus sees her love for Him, as His lambs she loves and feeds.

Just thought I'd add one thought here, though.... We DO receive constant blessings. Unlike the poem leads you to think... I want you to know that we are here at the front of the battle lines where we see, not only the "fallen," but we also see the many, many steps of progress... souls saved and lives changed!

So, I would choose no other life!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Super 8

My oldest gift from the Lord turned 8 on Friday. Can it really be true that I am a mother to an eight-year-old?!

The day before his birthday we gave Davey a little riddle. We told him that he would not wake up to any presents because he was going to be choosing the gift himself. The reason was that we needed him to be there to choose the size. By the end of the day, he was pretty convinced he was getting some sort of clothing. We just enjoyed letting him think that, knowing what the real present was going to be...

And, (drumroll please!) the gift we had in mind was a NEW BIKE. We had money from his Mimi, from our dear friends Larry and Vicki, and from us. We took Davey to an outdoor market, and this is the pretty bike he chose...
Then, we let him choose one thing to do together as a family, and his choice was bowling. What fun we had together as a family! We have never been bowling here, so it was a pleasant surprise to find out that this is something we can enjoy right here in Simferopol!
For lunch we let Davey choose where we would eat. It was no surprise when he quickly responded, "McDonald's!" because this is where we usually go on very special days. Since it is the only little piece of America we have here, we try to save it for special occasions.
Today we had a small gathering at our house for Davey to celebrate being 8 with his friends. David grilled hot dogs for a menu of grilled chili-cheese dogs, potato salad, and birthday cake. Yum!
The greatest gift of all was to hear my birthday boy tell us that his birthday was better than he could have expected. Ahhh... music to a Mommy's ears.