Monday, September 23, 2013

Let's play a game

I am really starting to think about what life will be like once I am back in America. The biggest problem:


So here is the game. Everyone leave a comment about what you think I should do with my life in my repatriation. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The end is near...

Over the past few months I've been battling with a decision over the future. Whenever people would ask about my plans for staying in China, I'd always respond with, "I don't have a plan. I'm here until it is time to go." But now, I have a plan...sort of.

Ever since my last trip home, I've really been struggling on when to go. At first I thought I would be home for good by Christmas time. But, upon returning, I took more time to pray about it and seek God for the right answer. I still don't have an official one other than the time is coming. It will be sometime between December and May 3. That is the day my visa expires and I do not plan to renew it. I'm coming home on December 18 for the holidays and I am in a wedding in Florida in the end of January. I'm still waiting to know if that is permanent or if I will return for my final few months in China. This isn't a decision that has come easy, but I feel the Lord is lining things up so that it can be a smooth transition for the Guest Relations department at SFCV.

Last week I had to do the hardest part: tell Tim and Tina. Pam already knew because I broke down to her when I first came back from the States. Waiting so long to tell them was hard. I felt like I was living a lie every time we talked and the anxiety was really getting to me. I'll be honest, it sucked. I didn't want to let them down, but I knew that it wasn't. Of course we were all a little emotional in the meeting, we are more than coworkers or even friends, we are family. I made a promise that China is not off the table for the future, and it is not. It has been a huge part of my life, of my growth, and of my heart. I can't see a future that does not involve it in one way or another.

So now, this is the part that I don't like, but have to say. Moving is expensive. My flights alone for just visiting home in the last year have me in serious debt. I really hate asking for money, but it seems to be something I can't do without. I guess a better way to ask this is to say, please pray for the Lord's provision in this transitional period. I pray that whatever job I take on next year will allow me to pay off my debts quickly so I can begin saving for the future (that hopefully involves adopting Chinese babies).

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Precious Patrick

This is Patrick or as most would call him here Wu Yumin. Over the past few weeks, we have formed a friendship. For obvious reasons communication is not a big part of it, but there is something sweet about sitting in silence. I have been observing him as he interacts with Sheldon. Sheldon can be...spirited. But Patrick has a patience with him that others don't. Part of it is circumstances, they are the boys closest in age in their house therefore they tend to play together, but part of it is Patrick's character. Often when I am in the house, Sheldon is jumping around pretending he is Ultraman, but Patrick will come sit next to me, hold my hand, and protect me from any flying stuffed animals that have been defeated by Ultraman.
Recently, I lost our dog Benji. I took my eyes off of him and we think he may have wandered out the gate. We made "lost dog" flyers to post around the area. When Patrick heard about this, he took my hand and asked me if my dog ran away. With a sad look I responded with a nod of the head. Then, in one of the most precious moments I've had here, he told me he was going to find him and give him to me. Of course I did not understand every word of the conversation, but I understood enough of it and the hand gestures filled in the rest.
Patrick is by far one of the sweetest 10-year-olds I have ever had the privilege to know.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Celebrating America in China

Just a couple weeks ago was a holiday that is special to us in America. It is a holiday that represents our freedom and our independence, something that we so often take for granted because it is something that we rarely take the time to consider. I have now celebrated that holiday three consecutive times in China. I love this country, but I am proud to be an American. I am proud to wear my nations colors and celebrate the freedom that so many men and women have died to protect. I am proud to live in a country where we have choices, where we are not censored (well, sort of). And though sometimes I think people should not post everything they are thinking, I am proud to live in a country that allows us to speak freely on social media sites. And though I am not currently living there, America is my home and I am proud of that. God gave us a great nation and I am proud to celebrate it even from the other side of the world.
beginning of a delicious meal

goofy times with Adrian

watermelon seed spitting contest


ultimate frisbee before fireworks

best firework show in town