Tuesday, April 24, 2007

no, we didn't fall off the face of the earth

You may have thought that though by how long it has taken to get this post up. I'm sorry, but I have neither read or written on anyone's blog for almost 3 weeks now. I've started getting up earlier in the morning so, that means going to bed earlier too, so my normal time for blogging (11:00-12:00 at night) is now sleep time.
We have had an incredibly busy and exciting past three weeks and I believe these past two nights in a row without going anywhere or having someone over for a meal is a new record for the month of April. We have always been faithful in having our "Family Night" every week, but the rest of our weeknights and weekends have been full. That's the joy of loving people, you can never get enough of them!
To be honest, I have been thinking a lot lately about what it must be like to have a normal life. I mean it is actually nice to be able to sit at home and have nothing to do but write E-mail, chat with friends and keep one's blog updated, but we would miss out on so much. Thanks to my not blogging I was able to dedicate a lot of time to a lot of wonderful people, the most important being Naty, Gabriela and Marcus. I think it was worth it.
I have also been wondering lately what it would be like to just have a job that I planned on being at until I retired. My school district has an opening for a better position at one of my schools and my principals are pretty much begging to give me the job, but I decided not to interview for it. Partly because we are planning to be in Venezuela after August but mostly because if, for some reason we aren't, I really enjoy the job that I already have. I would also rather dedicate the time that it would take for me to fulfill my new responsibilities of a new job, to being with my family instead. So, I am giving up the chance to make more money and have a better position to be able to have more time and lower pay. I sometimes think that I have to be wierd! But, honestly, isn't that what Jesus would do? It has just been a really wierd thing to actually do in real life.
Another thing that has really been consuming our thoughts and activities lately is the "what if..." question. What if we can't go to Venezuela in August as we have been planning? Naty and I have both felt very strongly that when it is time for us to go we will be able to sell our house and we will also have raised 100% of the money that we need for our two year term with RMM there. We have not had a single showing of our house yet and it has been on the market for about a month. So, what if God decides that He doesn't want our house to sell? (After all, it isn't really ours to begin with, it's His) Maybe He'll want us to stay here in Columbus longer than we've expected. One early morning as I was praying and journaling about this whole moving situation, I really felt like God as asking us to "Live our lives like we are staying here, but plan like we are going to Venezuela". Basically to not get too wrapped up in the going that we forget about life right now.
After that revelation about a week or so ago, I have tried to be sure that I am actually carpe dieming (seizing the day) and not getting so wrapped up in the future that I forget to focus on the here and now. But, as I've started to focus on "living like we are staying" it has become a problem to not "plan like we're staying" too. Honestly it has been difficult to trust that our house is going to sell and give up on planning to stay. Again, logically, it seems like we need to make plans for both options, either going or staying, and that has made it even more of a challenge to trust that we are going so we have no need to plan to stay!
If that was all too confusing, now you know a little how we feel!

Saturday, April 7, 2007

spring break!

It has been too long since I did an update to our blog and I really have no excuse to put it off any longer. I had my spring break from school this past week and you'd think that I could have added to the blog before Saturday, but I guess this wasn't my first priority.
Here's a quick run through of our week and some pics to go with it. Rosanna, Naty's sister arrived at the Columbus Airport on Monday morning at 11:00. We went with her to Children's Hospital to visit Christopher, the son of some of our friends who had a bad case of croup. Also, on Monday afternoon and Tuesday during the day I mowed 4 different yards, including ours. While I was mowing, Gaby and Rosy were having fun pretending to be Elizabeth and Mary with their respective babies, John and Jesus.
Then Monday evening Naty and I had a date at Applebee's to watch Ohio State loose. Shucks! Although Penn State remains my first love in college sports, I was hoping that the local Buckeyes would be able to beat Florida sometime! We also used the time to talk about goals that we have for the rest of 2007, now that it is 1/4 over already! We talked about what we hope to accomplish in Columbus before we leave as well as what we hope we have achieved in Venezuela before 2008 comes around.

On Tuesday after mowing grass I went on a date with Gaby to Graeters for ice cream. We had a lot of fun together. Here are father and daughter before our big date...

On Wednesday morning we set off from Columbus, OH to Belleville, PA to visit with friends and family in the town where I grew up and where Naty and I met nine years ago.
On Thursday we just relaxed most of the day and then in the evening we got together with the Yoders, Naty and Rosy's host family, and Naty made Shawn's favorite meal... arepas! Here is a pic of the whole Yoder crew.

Friday meant more relaxing, being with family and of course more eating! That evening we all went with the Peachey family to the Bread of Life Restaurant for a great supper thanks to Dad and Mom Peachey. Thank You Very Much!

This morning (Saturday) we went out to eat again (do you see a pattern here) at Miller's Diner for breakfast. We got together with my cousin Rich as well as our friends Michael and Maria Yoder and their two children Natalie and Paul. We hadn't been together with the Yoders in more than 2 years so it was great to catch up with them. It was great to see you again Rich, but your appearances are a bit more frequent!