Friday, June 29, 2012

Angry Bird Birthday Party! Happy 4th Birthday Lijers!

We celebrated 4 years with our Elijah! He is such a JOY to be around! He thinks he is the funniest guy in the world and he LOVEs to wrestle, fight, roll around on the floor, tickle, hang upside down, flip.. you get the point.
He has his wild side but he is also very sensitive, especially with others. 
He loves babies. He really loves when they love him back:) 
He LOVES to still kiss and hug me and he always seems to compliment me when I need it most.
a BOY is just we needed as a family and I am so blessed that God has let us have Elijah.

 Our traditional birthday breakfast:)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Happenings and Such

We have been thoroughly enjoying having Mark home with us! He has one more week off before he starts his new position at Valor the first Monday in July. 
We have been staying busy. 
We were able to enjoy Jon and Franki's wedding reception in Colorado Springs. 

                    They were married in Florida so we watched the ceremony at the reception:) 

We celebrated Valerie's 17th birthday! 

We have been trying to stay cool- ever since Mark has returned we have had 100 degree or close to that days! Its crazy! The heat is unbelievable. We are thankful we have AC and it keeps the bottom two layers of the house cool although it doesn't seem to touch our upstairs bedrooms.

We have been spending lots of time in the pool, sprinklers and any place that is air conditioned.
Everyone came with me and went grocery shopping the other day because it was so nice and cool inside. I managed to fall on some spilt drink in one of the aisles and really banged up my elbow and tailbone. NOT fun. I was so sore the next morning.
Today, our pet hamster, Bolt, died. I wonder if it was too hot for him. I remember as a kid, my mom putting my hamster out in the sun on the porch and it died all sweaty and such. Oh well.. the joys of small rodents for pets. Mark dug a hole. I got a popcorn box and cut a lid for the casket. We all met in the backyard and buried our furry pet after saying a few nice things about Bolt.

Elijah's birthday is on Friday. He has been getting birthday money in the mail, so we gathered it all up and went to the toy store. Mark has been wanting Elijah to use his Christmas/birthday money on a racing set and it never has happened till today. We have been looking but we wanted one where you could plug the cars into the wall so we weren't buying batteries for the track which is the hugest waste of money ever! We found one at Toys R Us and let me tell you, Mark was more excited than Elijah about the purchase:) After about an hour of setting it up (this thing is HUGE) we got to play with it- It really brought memories back for me of the one my brother and I had as kids. We would race for hours.  You had to hold down the little gun thingy and your car would take off. You always had to fold those little metal prongs down after a crash or it wouldn't go and the smell of the cars on the tracks was still the same! Good times. I think Mark and I will be enjoying some good races after the kids are in bed:) 
That is all for now. 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Day 16 and Day 17- The End

Wednesday, we enjoyed doing errands in the VERY cool weather which was a welcome relief from the heat. Wednesday night, the Wishalls invited us over for dinner which was a great way to spend the evening. Thanks, guys!
Thursday morning we waited and waited... we went to the library. We ran a couple errands. We were SO ready when 4:30 came around and we left for the airport! On the way into the airport, Arianna fell on the escalator and cut her knee pretty badly. So she greeted Daddy with lots of tears but only because her knee was hurting:) I , on the other hand, lost it when I saw him. I could not stop crying. It was amazingly wonderful to see him and touch him and hold him. I praise God for the safety He granted thru the many hours on planes, buses and vans.
We are whole again and blessed to continue life with one AMAZING man! Please pray for him as he deals with jet lag being back. All the kids want to do is climb on him and play and I know last year it took him a while to get back into the swing of things.

Cant wait to share lots of pictures and one SUPER cool video of a pack of lions tearing into some other animal with you guys.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Day 14 and 15- Ready for him to come home!!

So I have been slack in my picture taking the past two days. I am blaming it on the heat. Monday and Tuesday the temps have been close to 100 degrees and let me tell you it was HOT! Why is it that I loose all patience when its so hot? The kids are so whiney and complaining every second. Yeah, it was a rough past 2 days.

But we did have some fun..
On Monday we went to Splash again and this time it was for free since last time we had to leave early because of the rain. So we spent a good 4 hours splashing, swimming, diving and it was relief from the sweltering heat. Monday night, we hit up Fazolis for free kids meals (they read 5 books and fill out this bookmark) and it was SO nice to be in air condition. After dinner, my sweet friend Ada came over and we painted and chatted into the evening- good times! 

Today, the ladies from our church met up at a park and let the kids play and we chat, etc. We had so many visitors this time and it was wonderful to make some new friends and build relationships! The park also has a creek so after about an hour of sweating in the sun, everyone wanted to go play in the water. It was SO hot! Tonight, we got to go to Grandma and Grandpas and Lina and I got to get away for a little bit to eat and shop. It was such a nice break and a wonderful time with my mother in law. I love her so very much and am so blessed to be married into Mark's family.

Tonight, after we got home, the house felt like a sauna and the 3 out of the four kids were crying about something hurting while I was trying to bathe them and get them in their jammies. Sophia stepped right up and get a book and started reading to Ella and Elijah while I helped Arianna get tylenol and tucked her in. Then she helped put Elijah and Ella to bed and was singing to them and tucking them in. What a HUGE help that little girl was to me tonight!

Mark and I have chatted a bit through skype- they have visited the slums and then had a debrief time with the team and are soon flying home! I get so nervous when he is on the plane- its such a LONG time in the air! I cannot believe how fast this trip has gone compared to last year. The kids have done very well overall. They are growing up. God poured out his grace on me these past two weeks and taught me many lessons and gave me joy through the whole process. He is good. And the friends and family who helped me with the kids are due a LOT of thanks too!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Day 13- Mark preaches again/ Father's Day

Church this morning was very encouraging and refreshing to my tired soul. We sang a new song from Sovereign Grace called Show us Christ- click on the title below to hear the song. The truths in this song spoke to my heart, especially thinking of Mark in Africa sharing the hope we have in Christ because of the Gospel! Love the words.. "Your Word is food for famished souls, freedom for the slave, riches for the needy soul." The people in Africa materially have nothing but with Christ they have EVERYTHING! powerful stuff. And powerful reminders to me that Christ speaks to me thru His Word which is the bread and life for my soul as a believer- how I love it and how I need to dig into it even more so Christ can reveal more of Himself to me! The words have been running thru my head all day and I am so thankful for music that sinks in my head and constantly reminds me that Christ is all I need. 
Prepare our hearts, O God 
Help us to receive 
Break the hard and stony ground 
Help our unbelief 
Plant Your Word down deep in us 
Cause it to bear fruit 
Open up our ears to hear 
Lead us in Your truth 

Show us Christ, show us Christ 
O God, reveal Your glory 
Through the preaching of Your Word 
Until every heart confesses Christ is Lord 

Your Word is living light 
Upon our darkened eyes 
Guards us through temptations 
Makes the simple wise 
Your Word is food for famished ones 
Freedom for the slave 
Riches for the needy soul 
Come speak to us today

Where else can we go, Lord 
Where else can we go 
You have the words of eternal life

After church we got to spend time with Grandpa for Father's Day!!! 
My camera died so these blurry phone pictures will have to do! 

I talked to Mark early this morning and he had a full day of preaching, VBS and a youth rally. It was a much smaller scale and Mark said he got to sit down with many of the church people and just answer questions that they had with the Word of God. The teens also had a lot of questions too about the Bible and theology. Today (Monday) , they are headed to a Masii school where they will probably play lots of soccer:) Tuesday they will visit the slums and then Wed they fly home!!! They get home Thursday night around 5pm- I cannot wait!!!!!!!!!!! 

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Day 12- Mark- Park with 100 kids / Tina's Owl Baby Shower

Today we celebrated Tina and baby Natalia at Lodo's. 
Tina is due the end of July and we are VERY excited to meet her sweet little girl!
Natalia's bedroom theme is "owls" in light pink, brown and green so thats what we went for the shower decor. I found this CUTE owl cake on Martha Stewart and its one of my favorite ones that I've ever made. 

The brushetta was out of this world! 
 This was the first baby shower my girls have gone to and they LOVED it! 

 This quilt below was given to Tina by Matt's grandmother and it has been in the family MANY generations- such a cool tradition to pass along.

It was a very full and good day spent with my wonderful family! and Elijah got to spend the whole day with grandpa and Avery and had the time of his life! He talked all about it on the way home tonight:) 

Mark has a busy day ahead so if you are reading this late at night, please pray for him. He will be preaching up to 4 times again Sunday (which is now) They will also hold another VBS and youth rally and have the main church service. They are very close to being done in Africa and we are very excited to have him home! Make sure to check out for some pretty cool pictures. I especially love the ones of them building the houses! Today they were going to take a bunch of elementary kids to an African park- not the kind we think of in America, but he said they can ride camels, etc. I haven't talked to him yet tonight to see how it went but I am sure the kids had fun.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Day 11- Mark safari and HEART / haircut and errands

 Friday was SO very busy for me that I didn't even get to blog about it. 
Erika was so very sweet and took the kids after lunch till the evening while I ran errands for Tina's baby shower. I should have taken a picture of Erika and the kids but it slipped my mind. 
I was so thankful that I could do all those errands without kiddos- 
and I even got my hair cut! 
Its much shorter and I just love it. 
Emy and Val came over at night and we decorated cupcakes and cookies and prepped for the shower. 
These pictures were taken on Saturday (today) 
Talked with Mark and they went on a morning safari and saw a pack of lions eating a wildebeest! How cool is that! He said he took videos- cant wait to see that! The team also traveld to HEART where they will spend the rest of their trip. They also went to the marketplace to purchase souvenirs. I am ready for him to come home!!!!