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Archive for April, 2007

Job Fair Results

It was a great trip to Anchorage. Sophia had so much fun hanging out with her Grandma Becky at the hotel. She loved the big bath tub and had a lot of fun “swimming” in it. She also had a chance to have short visits with her Opa in Palmer and her Oma in Anchorage. It has been a Grandparent-Getaway for her this time.

As for the job fair, we weren’t quite sure what to expect from it, but found out the night before it even began that our #1 choice wanted us as well. After interviewing with other districts and getting other offers over the following days, we decided that our minds weren’t changed and that we still had our hearts set on Thorne Bay, Alaska.

Thorne Bay is a community of about 500 people on the East Coast of Prince of Whales Island in Southeast Alaska. Getting to this community will consist of a long ferry ride to Ketchikan (which is the nearest city) and a shorter ferry ride from there over to the Island, which happens to be the third largest island in the United States (with over 1500 miles of paved road between all the different communities on the island). Our baby will most likely be born in Ketchikan, although those kind of details are yet to be worked out.

So, sometime in August we’ll be headed there to start our new life! Thanks for all of your prayers and please keep ’em coming!

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Sophiecdotes

Sophia’s ever improving verbal skills and language comprehension have been cracking us up lately, here are a few examples.

The other day Isaac told me that on their way home from town, an El Camino passed them on the highway. Being that Sophia is in top categorization mode these days, she screamed out what she thought it was, “BOAT!!!” Then she stopped herself, wrinkled up her nose and as in total shock asked, “Car?” And then she paused and said, “Truck.”  My thoughts exactly Sophia. My thoughts exactly.

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Choices are a big issue in our house these days as well. “No” has become the word of everyday, so we’ve lately ceased asking yes-or-no questions where no is simply not a choice, as in, “Sophia, do you want to come with Mama so I can get you ready for bed?” Of course her answer is no, but she used to be such an agreeable little girl that this threw us way off guard. So yesterday, in practice of our new method of “choice questions”, Isaac asked Sophia if she wanted to read her book on the couch or in her room before she went down for a nap. Her answer, “Um, play?” Not an option, Sophia, but nice try.

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Sophia has always been a good eater, but tends to get kind of sluggish half-way through the meal. The first, “All done!” out of her mouth usually accompanies lots of food left on her plate. Her biggest encouragement is when we count down her bites for her, “Only four more bites Phia. Okay, now only three more!” – down to “Last bite!” which is her favorite. She tried to pull a fast one on us recently as we had gotten up from the table to go and look up something on the computer while Sophia was still in her highchair working on her food. We had left her with many bites remaining, but not 5 seconds after we left the table did we hear coming from her mouth in an ever convincing tone, “Last bite!”

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Light and Lack Thereof

 

 I went to bed last night right after closing the living room curtain on the sun that peered tauntingly through the window.  No matter how many times I experience these longer and longer days, year after year, I always find myself amazed by the light.  It seems crazy every year to be hitting the sack when the sun is still hitting those mountains.  In the dead of winter, when the sun rises at 10 and sets just after 4 in the afternoon, taking the drive to Anchorage from where we live is a task with much needed foresight.  We always make sure we are ready to drive by the time there is light, and that we arrive at our destination before it gets (too) dark.  Otherwise, we risk hitting patches of black ice or straining our eyes to try to see the road through the billions of snowflakes that are coming down all around us.  As the days get lighter and the roads start to clear of ice and snow, we start to get more relaxed about the time. 

 Which is why I’m looking forward to the drive tomorrow.  Lots of daylight, few (if any) weather-related hazards…  Just Isaac, Sophia, and me on the road enjoying the scenery, no matter how early or late it is.

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I Am From

I saw this over at a blog called Owlhaven a while back, and have since then wanted to try it out for myself (although I didn’t use a particular outline, I just tried to write about my childhood).  Enjoy! 

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 I am from rainy towns, dry desert homesteads, and mountain communities.  From hauling water, filling generators, and stacking pile upon pile of chopped wood that my dad has cut from trees needing to be cleared.  I am from a river where my little sister and I take turns lying down on a bridge so we can wash each others’ long dark hair with its frigid water.  I am from people leaving and never coming back.  I am from a home ever changing. 

I am from lots of kids running around, making up their own games outside on long summer days.  I am from many bodies in a twin-sized bed, not out of necessity, but just for the company.  I am from large pots of  “gulash” for dinner, orange salad on the holidays, and weeks of meals made out of chicken, when that’s what’s on sale.  I am from a mother and stepmother who are always so busy that the word “relax” isn’t in their agendas.   

I am from a mechanics’ shop, where my dad works hard to make sure all the trucks keep running, especially on really cold days.  I am from the smell of grease and the occasional blob of it on my clothes or in my hair.  I am from crawling under and over dozers and loaders with my brother, laughing and pretending we are monkeys when we are supposed to be working.  I am from a part of life that forces you to get your hands dirty. 

I am from achy muscles from an all-day snowshoe.  I am from sweat and fatigue and pressing on, all in order to get the chance to see the view of a lifetime from the top of a mountain. 

I am from big European cities with languages I only partly understand or don’t understand at all.  I am from hours sitting in the kitchen of my Berlin apartment, translating text in order to understand it.  From headaches and sobbing in bathrooms as I struggle to understand or be understood – from smiles and laughter because I can and I am. 

I am from youth groups, church retreats, and “Good News” Wednesdays.  I am from friends who love the Lord.  I am from the confusion that stems when the things you learn at church with those same friends cease to matter when you walk through your own front door; yet, I am from the Grace and Mercy of God, who never gave up on me.  I am from Him. 

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Sunday Praise

Romans 1:20

  “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities‑his eternal power and divine nature‑have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” NIV

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Transition Time

Hi Everyone!

   Glad to see you made it on over to my new site.  I will no longer be posting on Blogger, so you’ll have to come here in order to see any new posts from now on. 🙂  With Isaac’s help I stumbled upon Wordpress and discovered that it’s much easier on technologically challenged people such as myself – and I now have no reason to get a degree in “HTML code writing” in order to do the kind of cool blogging stuff that I’ve always wanted to do (such as my customized header – pretty cool huh?!)   It’s even been pretty simple to copy over my old blog to this one – correct dates and all – but it’s definitely a work in progress.  (The comments, however, are simply copied and pasted, but they’re here, and that’s what’s important.)

This new site comes at the perfect time in our lives, as we are preparing for much change in the near future, and I feel this new online journal can be an illustration of that change.  With the way things look now, we will most likely be living somewhere else starting in August, I will no longer be working, and we will start over again finding a church, building friendships, and getting familiar with a different geographical location of Alaska.  It’s all very exciting, and motivating, and at the same time is requiring us to have an abundance of faith in the Lord that He has a plan for us in all of this chaos.  We find ourselves in constant prayer lately, to say the least.  Topics such as “What if we can’t sell our house before we move?”, “What if the place we move to doesn’t have a hospital that births babies?”, and “How did we accumulate so much STUFF in the last 3 years?!!!” are common ones in our house these days, and they’re all ones that God is helping us sort through.  We have been convicted for some time that I needed to be home with our kid(s), and are happy that we are on our way to living a life that is in accordance with God’s will for us.  We appreciate your prayers immensely!

 We will be travelling on Wednesday to attend the Teacher Job Fair, and I’ll be sure to give an update on what transpires there.  If anything, it will be a great chance to learn more about the different districts out there, and, Lord willing, we might even walk away with a job.

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Sophiecdotes

 

Well, I told you that Sophia started saying “shoot” when she drops something, or knocks something over, or pretty much makes any kind of mistake. Lately, though, she’s adopted another of Mama’s words: goodness. Sometimes even coupled with “gasha” (gracious). She was cooking in her kitchen the other day, and happened to inadvertently dump a cup full of raisins behind the unit, which was backed up to the wall. She immediately scooted it forward and knelt down saying, as she picked them all back up, “Goodness. Oh, goodness gasha!” She said the same thing to me the other day after I accidentally hit my arm on something as I was walking by. “Oh goodness Mama,” and she gave it a kiss.

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 This one requires a bit of background… Valdez is known for it’s yearly Pink Salmon Run, in which, every summer, millions of pink salmon return to the banks near our local hatchery to release their eggs and die. The smell, especially to “new noses”, is horrifying and will give you reason to just skip eating altogether on any given day. On windy days here at work (as I work right right near the shore), I’m often sabotaged by the smell as I roam around outside taking an inventory of equipment, or putting new tags on DOT trucks. When you are hit with the smell, your breathing automatically ceases, and you mentally count the steps to the nearest building or automobile that may serve as your sanctuary. Trust me, I’ve been there. The only time the smell is completely gone is in the winter when everything is frozen. Which means that while spring is approaching, and everything starts to defrost, well, so do the old pink salmon remains. Some time last week we drove over the mud flats (one of the fishy areas) and I looked up into the rear view mirror and said, “That’s pretty stinky, huh?” She looked up at me from her car seat. “That old fish smell,” I said, “is pretty ucky, huh?” She put on a look of defense and irritation and said, “No ucky! Goldfish yummy!” “But that old fish smell, that’s gross.” I tried again. “Goldfish no gross!” she protested, as if I was insulting her best friend in the world. “Okay, but I’m not talking about Goldfish Crackers – that dead rotting fish smell, that’s gross.” There was no answer. Apparently she had given up on me.

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