Wednesday, May 27, 2015

What We Look Forward To

We talked all about the things we will miss from the US here
so now I thought we'd list the things we are looking forward to in China.

Josh
Chinese Food
Being On the University Campus
The Sights and Sounds
Stuffing Ourselves into an already Overcrowded Bus
Red Brick Sidewalks

Renee
Reconnecting With Friends
Speaking Chinese
Chatting With All The Nai Nais (grandmas) At The Playground
Eating Baozi For Breakfast
Climbing the Mountain

Tegan
Tae Kwon Do
Love Birds (read about it here)
Chinese Food
Public Transportation
Elevators

Preston
Playing With Old Friends
White Rabbit Candy
Having A Little Bit More Freedom To Run Free
Tae Kwon Do
Having My Own Phone

Alyia
Rice Every Day
Turtle
Seeing My Friend, Ting Ting
Ni Hao School (Chinese Kindergarten)
New House

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

What We Will Miss

We keep getting the question, 
"What will you miss from the US while you are in China?"  
Here are our answers.


Josh
Starburst Jelly Beans
My Van
Blue Skies
Certain Western Cooking Products
Buying Clothes That Fit A Western Body

Renee
Sunshine
Clean Air
Walls That Can Wipe Clean
Clean Water From Faucet
Kid-Free Date Nights

Tegan
Red Robin
Matthew & Jillian, Travis
Pizza
Soccer
KSG (Kids' Small Groups)

Preston
Friends
Our House
Blue Jays
Our Park
Grandparents

Alyia
School
Candy at Grandma's House
Friends
Rock Collection
Bubble Baths




STAY TUNED!
The next post will be
"What we look forward to in China"

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Waiting

Today was the last day of school for Tegan and Preston (and for me to since we homeschool).  As is our custom on the last day of each year, we read "Oh, The Places You'll Go" by Dr. Seuss.


I love this book!  Every time I read it, there's something different that grabs my attention.
Today, this is what got me...


Waiting...it seems to be all we do these days.

So many times, waiting means we have NO CONTROL over what is happing.
We just have to wait.
We wait for move out day, for the day we fly out, for the chance to see all our friends in China.  
We wait for our car to sell and for our visas to arrive (which they did!).
We just have to wait, and sometimes most times, we aren't so good at it.

So comes the wisdom of Dr. Seuss...in the very next page!


See, at some point, the waiting ends and the road begins.  Kinda sounds like a country song...
But even in the waiting, we can find the Boom Bands playing.
Even when circumstances would distract us from all the exciting things going on,
we HAVE to find the "bright places".  

For now, while we wait, we find joy in knowing that we will be home soon enough, that we have a little longer with people we love in the US, that we have a little bit longer to enjoy some of our favorite American treats, and most importantly that
WE KNOW WHO IS DIRECTING OUR PATHS!

All that waiting, "NO! that's not for you!"
At least that's not where our focus is meant to be.
It's hard, but I'll work to keep my focus in the right places if you will...
Deal?

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Love Birds

"Look at the birds of the air...
are you not worth much more than they?"
~Matthew~

I'm amazed at how He cares for us.  He provides day in and day out.  In big and small ways.  We've seen the pieces of a quite intricate puzzle come together so perfectly in the last 8 weeks or so.  EIGHT WEEKS!!!! That's how long is been since Josh began talks with the university.  Now, we have Visas and plane tickets!  Move out dates and packed bags!  For the first time in a loooooooong time, we can make plans...BIG THINGS, I tell ya!

But what about the little things--the birds of the air?  Yeppers!  He takes care of those too!

You see, since before we left China, Tegan has been asking for 2 parakeets.  We told him that when we return to China, if he is still interested, he could get them.  After all, it's good for a 9 year old boy getting ready to leave his current life behind for a move across the world to have something to look forward to.

For the last year, he's been researching how to care for parakeets.  He's been brainstorming names for them.  I suggested "Keet" and "Keet" so he'd have a "pair o' keets", but he was not impressed and insists on naming them himself.  He's pretty excited about his birds.

Just yesterday, we heard from a friend in Changsha.  Their family was gifted a pair of love birds, and they have been hoping to find a family to take them.  They heard about Tegan's plan and asked if he would like to adopt the pair.  As he researched the difference between parakeets and love birds, Tegan found that love birds are "way cooler" than parakeets.

He cares for all the little things!  Yes, He cares for the (love)birds, but He also cares for the desires of my young boy's heart.  In all of it, He is faithful.

The two boys are the current owners and the girls are the ones who gave it to them.


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Going Home!

After a longer than expected/desired time in America, we are very happy to announce that we are returning home! Home to Changsha that is.

We have 2 weeks and 2 days till we fly from Seattle to Seoul to Changsha! Honestly, time can't go fast enough, as this is a long awaited adventure. We are also very excited that we will be returning to the same area of town just a short distance from where we lived and worked before. The kids especially are excited about that!

I have signed a contract with Hunan University of Finance and Economics and will be teaching basic English classes to students of all abilities and education levels. We are incredibly excited to return and begin the next phase of our life. China has played a huge part in my life since 1998, and in the life of my wife since 2002.

We will be updating this blog more as time gets closer and when we arrive. We want people to get excited about what we are doing and follow us as we live this amazing life that we are honored to call ours!

We do ask that people remember us as we begin this next journey, and if you want to help us, please let me know!

Just a few pictures of the amazing city we call ours...