Friday, December 31, 2010

Update from the South China Sea

We’re on our way back to Hong Kong, today. One of the couples at our table have a really nice suite, which comes with free Internet access. They invited my colleague and I over for the morning to come and use the Internet. Nice! Here’s a short update from the trip, and some photos to enjoy. Will connect again in Hong Kong.

Good morning from a nice and c-c-cold Shanghai! In the past week, we’ve cruised from our cozy equatorial weather (high 80s/30C year round) to the crisp weather in Shanghai. The majority of the passengers on board the ship have moved from their daily perches by the pool to my favorite spot on the ship, the library.

I’ve been having a wonderful time so far! I’ve met delightful people from all over the world (including very many South Africans, most of whom live in Australia). I’ve eaten more than usual. I’ve also exercised more than I usually do in Jakarta. And I’ve been reading.

Perhaps one shouldn’t be reading a book on poverty (The Hole in Our Gospel by World Vision president, Richard Stearns) when you’re on a luxury cruise liner. Or perhaps that’s exactly the time to read it! Let me just say that I’m really blessed to have this opportunity to do something this far out of my league, and I’m especially blessed that it cost me one fifth (literally) of what it cost my neighbors! (Got talking to a hilarious old lady at breakfast yesterday, and she bluntly asked the other table guests how much they paid for their packages. I think she would’ve had a stroke on the spot had she heard what a steal we had gotten!)

So, what does a person do on a cruise? There are lots to do. There’s a guy on board who’s teaching advanced bridge classes and a lady teaching tai-chi and dancing. There’s a kids program for the 60 kids on board. There are games like putt-putt, shuffle board and ping-pong. There’s the pool and Jacuzzis. There’s an outdoor walking/running track, and quite a big gym. And there’s my favorite spot on the ship, the library.

Kiptoo and I have been enjoying our time in the library
We've also been enjoying playing Scrabble
Driving around Manila, Philippines. It's always fun to explore different cities, especially when you have friends to show you around
My classmate Cesar and his family showed me around Manila, and took us to Intramuros, which contains a memorial to Rizal, their national hero

These are the footsteps of Rizal as he was taken to be executed

Waiting to depart from Manila

The seas between Manila and Xiamen were really rough. I was glad not to get sick, but many people (including crew) were really seasick

Watching the sunrise as we headed into Xiamen port

We were met by a colleague in Xiamen who showed us around. This statue faces Taiwan, and is part of the unification ideal...
The goddess Matsu, facing Taiwan-owned Matsu island

At a market in Xiamen, a picture of Jesus next to one of Mao and one of a dragon... Interesting...

Having lunch in Xiamen. Shaun insisted we have to eat!

A roadside doctor's office next to our restaurant, where the "doctor" was cleaning a guy's ear!
This vendor was selling cigarettes. His not-yet-1-year-old kid was "playing" with a cigarette
Down an alley in Xiamen
Vegetable vendor in Xiamen
Next stop: Shanghai. Here you could buy bok choi on the side of the road
Kiptoo and I hung out with a South African family who live in Australia. I as the translator for the day. Kiptoo made some new friends in the art district
My friends and I at the "M on Bund." It was freezing!
A view of the deck while in Shanghai
The Shanghai skyline

Shanghai's a beautiful city, and we had a WONDERFUL day
 OK, signing off for now and seeing what the day holds.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Kiptoo's going on a cruise

I've never had a burning desire to go on a cruise. Not sure why. I've lived at/very close to the coast for most of my life, and I love the ocean. Yet, I've never yearned to go on a cruise. But when one plan after another fell through for this Christmas holidays and a colleague asked if I'd consider going along on a cruise through Asia, it sounded like a fun thing to do.

So, tomorrow morning early, I'm off to Singapore. From there, we'll board the Ocean Princess, setting sail for Manila, Philippines, where we'll arrive on December 26.

12/26: In Manila, I'll spend the morning exploring with Cesar (a classmate from BGU) and his family. Then it's back on the boat and head to China.

12/28: Arrive in Xiamen, where a colleague from school will show us around his city. I've never been to Xiamen, so this'll be a fun chance to see the city through a local's eyes. Then it's back on the ship and head further north, to an even colder city, Shanghai.

12/30: Though I have several friends in Shanghai, all of them are traveling for the holidays, so I'll likely go to a museum or simply walk around the Bund. Then, head south to warmer waters. We'll bring in the New Year somewhere between Shanghai and Hong Kong.

1/2: Looking forward to seeing the Eitemiller family in Hong Kong. Jessica was in my youth group in Taiwan, and by now, she's married and has a baby! I'll also get to see her sister Joelle (who's also in college by now) and hang out with their wonderful family at their home for the day. Then set sail further south, back toward the equator.

1/4: This'll be my first time to visit Vietnam, so I'm looking forward to seeing Nha Trang. If the temples that this area's most famous for is too far, I'll see if I can get a dive in!

1/5: Next stop: Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. I bet there'll be plenty to see in this city before we set sail to return to Singapore.

1/7: Back in Singapore, and hop on a plane back to Jakarta.

Kiptoo's going along, and I think he's excited. He's not been doing much exploring lately, so he made sure he's got everything ready to have some fun. He and I will post updates as/when we are able.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Yet to do, at 42

The last two years, I had a poem of sorts on my blog on the day of my birth, on things I've done in the past. As my birthday approached this year, it struck me that I sadly have very few really fun or profound items to add this year. And so I've decided to make a different list this time. (It's not my birthday yet. That's only on Friday.)

I'm an activator, after all, and lists invigorate me! This isn't a "bucket list," necessarily. I'm sure I'll think of many, many more things along the way that I'd like to do someday. Many of the items that are on the list are most definitely not things I decided I'd want to do before my name is listed in the obituaries. They're simply things I've done, and things I still would love to do. Some of the things crossed off are things I'd've never put on a list of "Things I hope I get to do someday." But planned or unplanned, these things have have become a part of me. They appear in no specific order. Some aren't things I just seek to do once off. (Been there. Done that. Check!) But some are things I'd never want to experience again. Ever. You'll figure out which are which.*

Fly an airplane. (I have an appointment for a lesson in June.)
Keep a journal. (I do, but not religiously. The only thing I do religiously might be to brush my teeth!)
Walk on a glacier in Alaska.
Pray and see a virtually-dead person come back to life.
Wake up to the sound of lions roaring nearby.
Build and decorate a small home in the boonies.
Spend time diving off a liveaboard in Micronesia.
Have solo exhibits and sell my photos.
Fall asleep to the sound of crickets.
Have tea with the President at his home.
Buy a home.
Swim in the wild with dolphins.
Find a new home for lost chickens.
Get stuck (and unstuck) in the mud.
Be present during the birth of a baby.
Walk on the Great Wall, and visit the Forbidden City.
Be a passenger in a taxi that kills a pedestrian.
Sit in awe as an amazingly-gifted friend worships God through her gift of music.
Play in the snow with my nieces.
Listen to a complete stranger's life story.
Sing in a philharmonic choir.
Take a class from a descendant of Ethiopia's last emperor. And visit with the Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
Participate in an Olympic event.
Deliver a dead body to its family.
Watch the sky catch on fire.
Survive an epic flood.
Befriend a Rendille.
Feel at home in a rainforest.
Work as an itinerant professor.
Get stranded, at night, in a broken car, in a wildlife park in Kenya.
Fight off a gun-wielding soldier.
Have an office that overlooks a river.
Take college students to someplace deep in the heart of Mozambique.
Get a fish pedicure.
Witness lives being transformed.
Be protected by a bow-and-arrow-wielding warrior.
Build a greenhouse and grow great vegetables in it.
Be patient.
Watch the sunrise and sunset in the Namib desert.
Know the birds around me so well that I can identify them without having to refer to any book.
Learn a new language.
Appreciate the little things in life.
Cry at the genocide memorial in Kigali, Rwanda.
Write a book. (Start in Bali.)
Keep a chameleon as a pet and resident fly-catcher.
Ride on the back of an ostrich.
Sign my name as Dr. Booysen.
Teach a graduate-level class in Ethiopia.
Survive a plane crash. (This was far less eerie than getting off the plane in the US on Oct. 31, 2000, and learning that the flight I was originally scheduled to be on, but had changed my ticket days before, had crashed!)
Visit more countries than my current age.
Master the art of taking the perfect bucket shower.
Live a simple life.
Witness the zebras and wildebeest crossing the Mara River from the Serengeti.
Visit Machu Pichu.
Have a mailing address in five countries . . . and a driver's license in most of those.
Move orphans into a new, loving home.
Walk the streets of Kathmandu.
Be chased by a rhino. (A short albeit frightening chase in Nakuru National Park.)
Try to love relentlessly.
Walk through the dark valley of situational depression.
Spend time in a Sudanese cattle camp, watching the cows come home.
Witness a hunt.
Perform with Yo-Yo Ma. (This was going to happen, but then the concert was canceled due to Typhoon Morakot hitting Taiwan weeks before the event. Bummer!)
Listen to friends' stories.
Make creme brulee from scratch.
Make mistakes. Seek forgiveness. Move on. (Ongoing process, this one, isn't it?)
Fly in a hot air balloon over the Rift Valley.
Cross the continental divide.
Live a life surrendered to God.
Survive a massive earthquake. (Taiwan, 921)
Take photos of beautiful children.
Ask more questions.
Be part of a brand new, international magazine launch as managing editor.
Learn to live with gratitude from a friend who did so with excellence.
Win the war against jiggers!
Think before I speak.
Kiss a giraffe.
Eat termites.
Learn as much as I can from every season through which I pass.
Visit Lalibella, Ethiopia.
Figure out all the functions on my camera.
Survive an attack by a crazy mob.
Slaughter a chicken.
Get stranded in a yacht and rescued by the Coast Guard.
Dive with a whale shark.
Stand up for what I know is right, regardless of the cost...
Spend some time with the Pokot.
Live at an orphanage.
Get a job where I can thrive once again.
Teach preschoolers.
Get to know the roads, the animals and the people of the Maasai Mara.
Watch a green turtle lay eggs on a remote island.
Dive the Great Barrier Reef.
Learn to make the perfect cup of coffee.
Live a life delighting in God, and in a way knowing that God delights in me.

I've enjoyed the journey this far. I look forward to at least 42 more.

* Facebook friends, I doubt the HTML code transfers to Facebook notes, so to see which items have yet to be done, visit my Web site,

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

So, I've joined a club.

After six years of blogging, I've joined an after-school club for teachers who want to to learn how to blog. Lest you think I have too much time on my hands (ha!), or I've lost it (well, maybe I have), the reason I've joined the blogging club is to learn how to best use a blog professionally. Until now, my blogs have been personal ones, including the ones I maintained for the children's homes.

And thus, I joined the club.

Maybe it will also provide me with the impetus to write on my personal blog more frequently again. While living in Kenya, I blogged almost daily. In the past year, I wrote a total of 20 posts. There are several reasons for this, and I won't bore you with them. But come to think of the reasons, maybe I won't be writing more over here after all... Especially since I spend my evenings poring over my dissertation.

Maybe I'll continue on this one-entry-a-month streak on this blog, but start building a professional site instead. One where I can post my resume and some of my professional writing, seeing that I am officially doing a job search. Yet again. Officially as of an hour or so ago, when I submitted the message to my school that I will not be continuing on as a preschool teacher next year. I simply cannot do it. I am not a preschool teacher. (I'm checking to see if anyone will notice this not-so-surprising bit of news if I hide it in a really long & boring paragraph.) I want to thrive in my job once again. Ultimately, I want to be teaching at a college level again. And I'm at the complete opposite end of the spectrum, I know. It was OK for a season. I believe I've learned what I had set out to learn. This season will indeed become part of my dissertation. So I want to move on. I'll tell you more in a different post someday. Or read my book someday. End of rambling.

Oh, yes, as I was saying... so I joined the blogger club, to learn from the dad of one of my students, a colleague who knows far more than I do about doing a professional blog. Or a really cool blog, for that matter.

I'll most likely move all the materials on this site someplace else, and keep my URL for the professional side of me. For those of you who have an aversion to change, consider this your warning.

I'm Adele, and I have a lot more to learn.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Today, I had a piranha pedicure

... and I didn't like it. Not a bit. Yet I kept putting my feet back in the water. I wanted to be able to say that I'd done it. Fish therapy, that is. You see fish spas all around Indonesia. Some are fancy and you pay $6 for an hour of therapy. The one where my friends and I went was $2 for 30 minutes. And the ponds were in the hallway of one of the local malls.

I've often walked by these ponds, looked at the locals sitting there totally relaxed, as if there really aren't about a million little fish stuck to their feet and legs. OK. Not a million. But those suckers know how to vie for a piece of property.

Like I said, I just couldn't keep my feet in the water. I tried. I may have kept them in for 15 seconds at the most. But the constant nibbling sensation was just eerie. (It's actually sucking, not nibbling, really. Those suckers don't have teeth.) An hour after the therapy, it still felt like I had fish nibbling/sucking at my skin.

I kid you not.

It was an impromptu decision to do it as a treat for one of my colleagues' birthdays. We've all been curious about it, but no-one wanted to do it alone. Had we planned to go, I would've taken my camera. I'd go back with friends simply to take photos, not to put my feet back in the water.

Granted, they're not piranhas. They're garra rufa, or "red log suckers." Or doctor fish. Call them what you may, having them suck at my skin gave me the heebie-jeebies!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

"Really? Avocado on your sandwich?"

Today, when my kids were finally down for their short nap, I was able to head out for a quick bite to eat at one of our school's 6 cafes. They're called cafes, that's right. Not cafeterias. You get served food on nice, colored plates. And some of the cafes have the most beautiful decor. I'll post photos sometime.

But that's not my point.

I decided to head to the Middle School Gaja Madah building. (Our buildings have names, not designations. You'll understand when you see the photos.) This building has traditional Indonesian decor, and the cafe serves Indonesian dishes in addition to the regular pastas, rice/chicken dishes, salad bar etc.

I wanted a grilled chicken panini.

Then I noticed avocado on display. "Ah! Could you add some avocado to that, please?" I politely asked.

"Avocado? You want avocado on your sandwich?"

"Yes, please." (I thought maybe the avocado was just part of a display, judging from the response.)

"The avocado is for juice bar. Not sandwich."

"Yes, but can I please have avocado on my sandwich?" I smiled. And thought how utterly unappealing an avocado drink is to me!

(Lots of talk among the Indonesian serving staff. And some frowns. And some shaking of heads, as in, "You bules* are very strange!")

The lady carefully put a couple of slices on my bread, and minutes later, I had the perfect panini. But as I sat at the Balinese-style table, enjoying my sandwich, I caught all the wait staff staring strangely at me... I smiled again, gave them a thumbs up, and gulped down the last few bites before rushing back to my crazy little kids.

Funny, isn't it, how some customs (or foods) seem oh-so-strange when transferred from one culture to another.

I cannot help but wonder if you've ever encountered something similar. Please share!

* Bule is the Indonesian term for gringo. Or waiguoren. Or crazy white people. :)

Forgot to upload these...

I was working on some school photo stuff, and realized that some of my personal photos had been downloaded to my work Mac, so I never got to share these. Enjoy!

When I was living and working downtown, I used to walk through the backstreets, past the homes of some of Jakarta's poorer population. I loved every time this old man was out on the street in the morning... The kids pay just a few cents for a ride on his fun-mobile. The little scooters rock back and forth, not powered by electricity but by the man peddling!

See the white powder on the face of the girl in the foreground? I was told parents put talcum powder on the kids' faces as part of the cleaning process. Since this is in the slums, you'd see the kids standing by the gutters many mornings, being washed down in public. Wash. Dry. Powder up!

The next two shots are from my visa trip to Singapore. This is the first view of Singapore's Marina Bay Sands Hotel as seen from my friends' apartment building (though not their own house, it is from the observation deck on the 50-something-eth floor.)

This is taken from the same spot, but looking at the hotel (and Singapore's many, many apartment blocks) as reflected in another high-rise building (the NTUC building, for those of you who know Singapore.)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


My life seems to be perpetually changing. I don't care for change, really. Who does? But some of us do a bit better with changes coming our way. Or we choose them when we decide it's time.

Some changes in my life, I chose. Others, I fought off like the pest. Yet others, I simply accepted.

I chose to leave Kenya almost 2 years ago.

I wouldn't have minded not to leave Taiwan this summer, but career-wise, it was the right thing to do. I had gotten a really great job at a really great school in downtown Jakarta.

And so, a month into my new job, just when my 2-year-olds had gotten used to me and I to teaching really little ones, I was presented with a need at our school, which meant changes in my world, again.

Someone from our other campus (in the suburbs) had been asked to come to our campus to fill an interim position as principal. (Our principal had originally only agreed to get the school going and was supposed to have been back in Australia by the summer.) Which left the other person's position vacant. It's a K1 position--what we called KA in Taiwan, or what other schools call pre-Kindergarten. It's what I taught in Taiwan.

So I've been asked to move to our suburban campus (a huge, beautiful campus!) to take on that position. At our city campus, they will combine the three nursery classes into two.

Seeing that I do not wish to spend hours on the road every day along with 3 million other commuters (read: major traffic congestion), I will be moving to a home close to school.

I'll start my new job on Monday, and I'll move as soon as I have curtains and furniture for my new house.

Though I really didn't anticipate having to face changes at this stage, I can honestly say that I am happy to be working with 4-year-olds again, to be able to use the experience I gained in Taiwan and build upon that. For the educators: Ours is an IB school, and we follow the Primary Years Program, which is new to me, but it'll be great to learn and gain PYP experience!

I am sad to leave my young'uns in the city. In the month I've spent with them, they've crept into my heart. I'm sad to leave the entire nursery team, as we've grown into a strong teaching team with a united vision for our kids. But working with 4-year-olds will be a more appropriate challenge for me, so I am also excited about the changes ahead.

What a journey! Never a dull moment, eh?

Friday, July 23, 2010

Life's a Journey

This morning, I boarded a small plane out of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for a journey of more than 30 hours to my next destination: Jakarta, Indonesia. Over the past few days, one item after the next got checked off my to-do list. All that really remains is to transition well to a new country, a new culture, a new world. Not that that was on the written list. Just the mental one.

It's a tricky business, at times, this international life. Moving back to Taiwan 16 months ago was easy. I knew the city, the language, even some people. I knew where to go for the best dumplings. I knew that I loved Chinese food, and I knew where to go to escape the busy-ness of the city.

This weekend's transition is different. I've never been to Indonesia, let alone Jakarta. I know no Indonesian words (yet). I know little about the culture which will inevitably become part of my most certainly affect my worldview.

But I will learn. Of that, I am sure. I'm sure I'll come to love Jakarta and its people. Over and over, friends who have been there emphasize how amazing Indonesian people are. They're super friendly, I am told. I've also read that no matter what, they smile. Even when trying to solve a problem. I'll have to remember that. I'll also have to remember that Indonesians never use their left hand to give or receive anything.

I look forward to discover for myself what makes Indonesians unique. I know enough not to make blanket statements about a culture based on interactions with one or two people. No stereotyping, right?

And so, as I set off for this new chapter, I am excited to see what I'll learn about my new home, about myself, about life itself. And about the Source of Life. I will blog, occasionally. Maybe you, too, will come to love the people and the places of Indonesia.

Life still is good, indeed.

For those who wonder, I will continue working on my dissertation, which has been put on hold for the summer and for the transition time.

Monday, May 31, 2010


Some high school art students took photos around the school a few weeks ago. This is me in action. After lunch, the kids have reading time. Here, Sammy and Jedd had asked me to read them a story. I love the expression on Sammy's face! I'll definitely miss my kids!

Thursday, May 27, 2010


The kids got to visit a nearby fire station today. They got to spray water, put on a fireman's outfit, and even learned how to do CPR on a dummy.

Lots of fun. I only have 5.5 more days with these pumpkins. I'm really going to miss them!

Saturday, May 01, 2010


"Sit up straight. Pretend there's a string coming out the top of your head. It's pulling you even straighter .... and straighter ... Now, close your eyes... Take a deeeeeep breath. Hold it. P-p-p-p-p-p, blow if out slooooooowly. Again..."
This simple breathing exercise has been one of my favorite tricks to calm down my 16 pumpkins. It works like a bomb. Every time. Even with the squirmiest kid, whom I have come to believe is the real-life version of Dash in The Incredibles.

But that's actually beside the point.

As is the fact that my kids have been learning about the sense of hearing this week, and thus made drums, guitars, you name it. They've been making shakers and testing different sounds. It's been a noisy week.

Add to that the fact that my research class concluded this week, which meant that I ferociously worked on completing my dissertation proposal. Which I sent in this morning.

That concludes this busy, noisy week.

Submitting today's paper is a significant milestone insofar as my studies go, as this document forms the road map to completing my dissertation. In it, I had to spell out exactly what my dissertation will be about, and how I plan to address my research. It also includes a detailed timeline to help me stay on track. Chapter by chapter, month by month, it leads me all the way to graduation. If all goes well, I should be able to graduate next summer.

For the past several months, my classes have been dovetailing, even overlapping. I've not had a chance to legitimately take time off and not have another deadline looming.

Today was different.

I was able to exhale. Big time. It will be a few weeks before I get feedback from my professor regarding changes I should make to my proposal before submitting it to the academic affairs committee for their approval.

I went to see Daisy, my favorite stylist, for some color and a cut. I had dinner with friends and didn't have to head home to do a few assignments. I watched a mindless movie.



And then I made a little pile on my nightstand of books I want to read in preparation for my writing, while waiting for my first rewriting assignment.

The book at the very top? This one. Then this one. And this one. And this and this and this one.



Though it was great to have the chance to simply take a break today, this train has slowed down for just a brief moment.

Maybe I should ask my little Dash for some of his speed so I can zip through my work just like he zips through his. (I can hear his little voice so clearly: "Miss Booysen, I'm done! What can I do now?")

A year from now, I, too, should be able to say, "I'm done!" But I already know what I want to do after that. Go and relax on a beach in Hawaii with some good friends. And take along only books like this one.

Or maybe not.

(I have actually been reading some non-class-related books on the side, by the way. Finished up Stones into Schools this week, and recently also completed the sequel to Left to Tell, about the Rwandan genocide.)

Needless to say, the biggest bulk of goods to be shipped this week in preparation for my move? Books. Can't imagine life without them!

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Give me the courage to live

Give me the courage to live!
Really live—not merely exist.
Live dangerously,
Scorning risk!
Live honestly,
Daring the truth—
Particularly the truth of myself!
Live resiliently—
Ever changing, ever growing, ever adapting.
Enduring the pain of change
As though ’twere the travail of birth.
Give me the courage to live,
Give me the strength to be free
And endure the burden of freedom
And the loneliness of those without chains;
Let me not be trapped by success,
Nor by failure, nor pleasure, nor grief,
Nor malice, nor praise, nor remorse!
Give me the courage to go on!
Facing all that waits on the trail—
Going eagerly, joyously on,
And paying my way as I go,
Without anger or fear or regret
Taking what life gives,
Spending myself to the full,
Head high, spirit winged—
On . . . on . . . till the shadows draw close.
Then even when darkness shuts down,
And I go out alone, as I came,
Naked and blind as I came—
Even then, gracious God, hear my prayer:
Give me the courage to live!

~ by Howard Thurman (1899-1981)
I used this poem to conclude my hermeneutics paper tonight. Hope you find as much inspiration in Thurman's words as I did.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Have you no scar?

Yesterday, I received heartbreaking news that dear friends of mine (from college days, we were in a music group together, and have kept in touch over the years and the oceans) were attacked this week. Their house was broken into (nothing unusual in South Africa). My friend was raped (sadly, also not unusual in SA). Her husband was taken hostage and made to drive their car out of their gated community, where he was then let go (rather unusual!)

What is also unusual about their ordeal is that Louis and Hettie, as public figures in South Africa (he is a famous gospel singer/songwriter, she a writer of parenting books), are not allowing this ordeal to rob them of their purpose in life, of pointing others to God.

As I've been praying for them, I thought of a poem by Amy Carmichael that has ministered greatly to me during difficult times.

Jesus speaks to us:

Have you no scar? No hidden scar on foot, or side, or hand?
I hear you sung as mighty in the land.
I hear them hail your bright ascendant star.
Have you no scar?
Have you no wound?

Yet, I was wounded by the archers, spent,
leaned me against the tree to die,
and rent -- by ravenous beasts that encompassed me
I swooned.
Have you no wound?
No wound? No scar?

Yes, as the master shall the servant be,
and pierced are the feet that follow Me,
but yours are whole.
Can he have followed far -- who has no wound? No scar?
Can she have followed far -- who has no wound? No scar?

If you would, please join me in praying for my friends as they continue to walk through this trial, and especially as they continue with the arrangements for Turn2God, a major prayer/praise event on March 6, something they've been working on for a while...

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Today, during free choice playtime, three of my kids were playing doctor, as is usually the case. I decided to have an impromptu mini-field trip for them, and took them to our nurses' office, where they marched in declaring that their babies needed to see another doctor.

Here are some photos from the visit. What can I say? My kids are cute! And I love that they could make the nurses chuckle, too!

I'd also love to have the ones who play in the kitchen visit our school kitchen, I think! Who needs long field trips when you can do fun stuff like this??

Yes, I love my job. Especially on days like today.

Sunday, January 03, 2010


This morning, I got news that friends had lost their baby girl during birth.

My heart has been aching for them, and over and over, I keep thinking what an odd euphemism it is to "lose" someone.

I may never understand what it is like to carry a baby for 9 months and then come home empty-handed. I may never understand any of the emotions my friends are having to deal with this week. Yet my heart aches for them, and I face a mix of emotions someplace between anger and confusion.

I don't understand why a tragedy such as this happens.

What I do know that God is still God, and I believe without a doubt that his heart aches for them, too. I know that to him, little Isla is not lost.

I wonder how parents find peace in a situation such as this. I think only God can carry anyone through a valley such as this.

Even though I go through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me... (Ps. 23:4)

Please pray with me for my friends. As a general announcement has not yet been made, I do not want to mention their names here. God knows who they are, though. Let's carry them in prayer.