Welcome to my little corner of bloggy land. Here you will find a glimpse into our everyday lives as we are truly happy in the service of the King!

22 July, 2010

Youth Rally, Noisy Neighbours, Sick Baby, etc. . .

Our Youth Rally this year was GREAT! Last year we had 55 people total. This year we had 67 teens and 89 people total. The teens had such an awesome spirit. The Youth Rally began on Friday night with an activity and then on Saturday morning we had two preaching sessions and finished with lunch. On Friday evening before the activity started there were a bunch of teens just hanging around the church waiting for the activity to start. So what did they do? They gathered around the piano and found one of the teen girls that could play the piano and then they started to sing hymns. It was so awesome to walk into the auditorium and see a group of about 30 teens singing hymns! The preacing on Saturday was great and we heard of many good decisions that the teens made. This year we had teens from 9 churches across the North Island that attended. Praise God for a good turn out!

Youth Rally Group Photo

On a completely different note . . . as some of you may know, we recently moved out to the country. We were so excited - no more busy streets and no more noisy neighbours that played loud music (if you can call it that) at all hours of the day and night. Boy were we in for a surprise the other night when our neighbours started being really noisy. Here they are:

Our "noisy neighbours"

I must say, I would rather have their noise then our previous neighbours.

Abby has her first cold. :( She's stopped eating as much and just wants to sleep. Poor baby. On Monday night she rolled all the way over for the first time! For several weeks she's been rolling unto her side, but on Monday night she made it all the way over. I was in the kitchen cooking tea and she was in her room playing on the floor. All of the sudden she started crying and when I went to check on her she had rolled over from her back to her stomach. She hasn't done it again since then, but we keep hoping we'll catch her doing it.

Taken last week before she got sick

On Sunday were are going to get family photo taken. I'm so excited! I've been wanting a professional photo done for quite some time. Abby was given a really cute green shirt in a box of hand-me-downs so I made this skirt for her to wear with it. My husband already has a green tie that matches really well, so we'll all be wearing black, white, and green for our photo. I can't wait!

Abby's "new" outfit

06 July, 2010

Catch up

So much has happened since I posted last. Where do I start? Where do I finish? How much do I remember?

Our Big Bus Blowout went really well! This is the anniversary of our bus ministry and we celebrate every year and try to get as many people as possible to ride the buses to church that day. We ran two buses this year. "A" bus had 71 riders and "B" bus had 51 riders! Praise God! We even had several parents come along with their children that day. Two of the mothers that came that day got saved!!!!!! I think there were 10 children that got saved that day as well. Praise God!

Those who rode the bus to church for the Big Bus Blowout

Abby is getting so big! We had her 3 month checkup last week. She is now 15 pounds and 25 inches long. She is in the 97th percentile for length, and the 85th percentile for weight. She can almost roll over. She loves to sit propped up on the couch watching everything going on around her. She LOVES her fingers and putting things into her mouth. She doesn't really suck her fingers, she chews on them. Anything she can her hands unto goes straight into her mouth. She is also "talking" more. Most mornings when I go in to get her she is lying in her bed just talking away.

Every month we have what is called "Strength and Beauty." This is an activity for the teen girls. We get together every month to have fun and learn stuff. In June we learned how to knit. I'm still working on my scarf! This month I gave the girls some old pants and told them to be creative and make a bag. They were a bit apprehensive at first, but they got into it and did a really great job. I didn't get a photo of all the bags, but these are a few. The point to this was to make do with what you have and be creative.

A few of the bags the girls made

We even celebrated the 4th of July on Sunday night. We had one of the families in the church over and we had hot dogs and roasted marshmallows in our fireplace to make s'mores. YUM! We had a great time just being together - even though the holiday has no real meaning here. My husband is so awesome at letting me celebrate my American heritage and making those celebrations fun. We even had fireworks! You can only by fireworks here in November so we saved some from then and lit them off on Sunday night. Our friends that came over had a little boy who is 1 1/2. He loved the fireworks!

This Friday and Saturday is our 4th annual Youth Rally. This year we have teens coming from 7 other churches. Please pray for their safety as they travel and for the preaching to get a hold of their hearts. We should have somewhere around 60 teens here for this.

Well, that's all I can remember for now. Thank you all for praying for my sister and her family. I know they appreciate the prayers.

02 July, 2010

Prayer Request

Please pray for my sister, Kris, her husband, Scott, and their 5 children. A couple of weeks ago they had a fire in their basement and had extensive smoke damage from that fire. The house had just been cleaned and they were finally able to move back. Well, they had another fire today which completely destroyed their home. They have really good insurance, praise the Lord, but they will have lots of decisions to make in the days ahead.

Thank you!

19 June, 2010

I'm Still Here!

Just wanted to let you all know that I haven't dropped off the face of the earth. Our computer got fried a week or so ago and we are waiting to replace it. We all are doing well. Abby continues to get bigger and bigger. She has recently started putting everything in her mouth. Her hands, her bib, her blanket, her toys, etc. Anything she can get in her hands goes into her mouth. On Wednesday, the 17th, she turned 3 months old. She was supposed to have an appointment on Thursday with the nurse to get weighed, measured, etc., but the nurse had to cancel. We are still waiting to hear back when the nurse will be able to come. I was really looking forward to having her weighed. Oh, well, another couple of days won't hurt anyone.

Tomorrow is the 11th anniversary/birthday of our church's bus ministry. Every year we do something fun to celebrate. It is called the Big Bus Blowout. We always do something special for the kids that are so faithful to ride the bus. This year we have "Birthday presents" that we are giving away. The kids get points for bringing visitors and also a chance to spin the "winners' wheel" for a chance to win more points. The top winner will get to choose from an assortment of "Birthday presents" whichever they would like. Please pray that we have a good turn out for this day. We've even heard that some of the parent's of the bus riders are going to come.

05 June, 2010


A couple people have asked me for these recipes, so I thought I'd share them here so everyone can see them.

Golden Mantou
1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
1 1/3 cups lukewarm water
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons sugar (you can add up to 1/4 cup if you want it sweeter)
1 egg
5 cups all-purpose wheat flour or bread flour
Oil to fry dough in
1 tin of sweetened condensed milk

Stir yeast into the lukewarm water and let sit for five minutes. Add oil, salt, sugar, and egg; stir well, and then incorporate the flour. This should create a soft dough. Knead until smooth, and then let the dough rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Roll the dough out into a log with a diameter of about 2.5 inches. Using a sharp knife, cut into 2 inch pieces (it should make around 20), and let rise again for at least 30 minutes. Heat enough oil in frying pan to cover balls of dough. Deep fry until they are golden brown. Serve with an open can of sweetened condensed milk. No double dipping! :)

The recipe says that it sould make about 20. I cut them smaller and got about 36 decent sized ones. If you only cut 20 they would be quite big.

Pasta Bake
This is a recipe that's not exact - I kind of make it up as I go :)

Mince (hamburger)
Tin of tomato puree (can of tomato sauce)
2 teaspoons oregano
2 teaspoons garlic or onion salt
Spiral noodles or macaroni

Brown the mince. Add tin of tomato puree. Stir in oregano and garlic salt. Let simmer for about 20 minutes. While sauce is simmering boil pasta according to package directions. Drain pasta. Stir pasta into sauce. Put in casserole pan. Top with shredded cheese. Bake at about 350F until cheese is melted.


Pardon The Mess

Have you ever gotten the incredible urge to be creative? On Thursday morning I woke up and wanted to make something - something really creative. So, I decided to make Abby some clothes. I only had two small problems, though. First, I didn't have any patterns in her size and secondly I didn't have any fabric. What to do? Someone recently gave us quite a few womens hand-me-downs. None of them are anything I would personally wear and there were a lot of pants in there which we wouldn't want to give away. After rumaging through the clothes I found two pairs of jeans. I decided to make Abby a skirt and a dress from them. I just used her measurements to make the skirt and one of her other dresses as a pattern for the dress. I think they turned out adorable. The dress is my favourite! Now I'm done being creative for awhile!
She was getting a bit sleepy in this picture.

I think she likes her dress!

26 May, 2010

Winter Is Here!

Yes, you read it right, winter is here! Today it was so cold and rainy. I can't believe how much it has rained lately. The road by our house is being re-done and they are just getting ready to reseal it. They haven't been able to do much for the last couple of days because of the rain, so the road has turned into a pot-hole filled mud pit. I really thought the car was going to get stuck as I was driving this morning.
Today was the perfect weather for one of my favourite meals. Stew. Not just any stew, though, my Dad's stew. My Dad is not known for his cooking abilities, but one thing he can make is stew. He usually makes it with venison, but I had to settle for making it with beef. I think the reason I loved his stew so much was because he only added potatoes and carrots to it and no other scary vegetables or onions. Mine doesn't turn out quite as good as his, but it's still pretty good. I think it lacks one ingredient when I make it - my Dad's love!

Beef stew and homemade bread - Yummy!

A couple months ago I decided to start making bread instead of buying it. It's so much cheaper that way and tastes so much better. I had a fresh loaf coming out of the oven at dinner time, so we ate that with our stew. This is my husband's favourite bread that I make. I thought I would share the recipe for anyone who is interested. This makes one loaf as there are only two of us that eat bread in this house.

Honey-Wheat Bread
1 1/2 cups warm water
2 Tablespoons honey
1 Tablespoon yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 2/3 cups white flour

Combine water and honey. Stir until honey is dissolved. Spinkle yeast over water and let set for five minutes. Stir. Stir in the whole wheat flour. Stir in 2 cups of white flour and salt. Beat in one cup of flour in at a time. Pour mixture on a bed of flour on the counter. Kneed 8 minutes, adding remaining flour when needed.

Put in an oiled bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled (about 1 hour).

Put in greased loaf pan and let rise again for 40 minutes. Bake at 375 (F) for 35 - 40 minutes.


Oh, and in case you're wondering what Abby was doing while I was getting dinner ready, she was lying on her stomach. She usually screams when we put her on her stomach, but the nurse has been encouraging us to keep at it. She usually only lasts for 5 minutes because she cries so much. Tonight she cried for about 3 minutes, and then she figured out how to get her thumb in her mouth. So, she laid on her stomach, sucking her thumb and looking at her teddy bears for about an hour while I got dinner ready.

Tomorrow night we are having a baby sitting night at the church. My husband and I have offered to watch the children so the parents can have a night out together. Should be pretty crazy!

25 May, 2010

New Family Photo

Today we decided to take a new family photo. After playing around a with it a bit I'm quite happy with it. There's just something about black and white photos. Yes, I'm thankful that we now have colour photos, but black and whites are just so nice once and a while. What do you think? I'd love to hear from you.

24 May, 2010

A Pig Farmer And His Favourite Little Piggy

The famer and his piggy :)

Friday night we held a progressive dinner for the church youth group. Each time we do this we pick a letter from the alphabet and the teens have to dress in a costume beginning with that letter, and the food at each house also has to start with that letter. This year the letter was, "P." Because we were having the main course at our house Abby and I dressed up too. Abby was dressed as a pig and I was dressed as a pirate. Since Nick was driving one of the cars he had to dress up as well and decided that he would dress as a pig farmer and carry around his favourite little piggy. Although they probably won't admit that they like dressing up, I think the teens really do. They were quite excited about this activity.

The group at the first house - I'm not sure what the boys were doing!

Pirate, Pig Farmer, and Piggy

For the main course at our house we had pizza, pasta bake, potato chips, and pop. We were the second house they came to and some of them had eaten so much at the first house that they weren't even hungry! I hope they all had a great time because I certainly did!

15 May, 2010

International Dinner

Well, time has once again slipped away from me before I could write a post about it! Last night we had our annual International Dinner at church. This is one of my favourite things we do together as a church. Why? Because I love to eat and there is always so much good food. This year we had food representing these countries:

Mexico (nachos and fiesta chocolate cake)
India (butter chicken, rice, pumpkin, chicken, and some sort of pancake thing with potatoes and onions)
Fiji (casava and fried bread with spicy mince)
Italy (spaghetti, lasagna, and pizza)
Scotland (scones)
Germany (I can't remember)
China (fried rice, spring rolls, and mantou)

Waiting to eat

Two of the countries, India and Fiji, had food made by people who are actually from those countries. It was so good! I was very happy that there was casava made by the man from Fiji. I ate way too much of everything!

My table

I did China this year. While looking for some sort of dessert to make I found a recipe for "Golden Mantou with Condensed Milk." Basically, it's fried bread and you serve it with sweetened condensed milk to dip it in. It was yummy.

Nick also had some geography games for everyone to play. He split everyone up into three teams and we competed together to win. For the first game he gave each person the name of a country. We then had to go to a world map (no names of any countries on it) and put a dot where we thought that country was. I am horrible at geography and was given the task of finding Vietnam. I marked the Philippines as Vietnam. Oops! Later, after we ate and ate and ate some more, we had a geography quiz. The team I was on was leading the whole way through, but we faltered at the end. We lost by one question.

8 weeks old

Abby is still gaining weight! She was weighed on Thursday and weighs 12 pounds 4 ounces. This Monday she will be 2 months old. I can't believe how the time has flown!

04 May, 2010

Company's Comin

Tuesday night we had a wonderful time with some people from our church. We invited them over for dinner and also played some games. The menu for dinner was:

Herb Roasted Chicken
Cheesy Potatoes
Steamed Carrots
Steamed Broccoli
Bread Rolls
Garlic Bread

And for dessert we had chocolate self-saucing pudding and vanilla ice cream. So yummy!

Not only was the food great, the fellowship was even better. There were 12 of us here and we laughed and had so much fun. I wish I had thought to take pictures! Oh, well, maybe next time.

Because the cheesy potatoes were such a hit I thought I'd share the recipe. I got this from one of my students when I taught in America. Yum!

Cheesy Potatoes

2 lbs. frozen hash browns (I just peel and shred potatoes)
1 pint sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cups cheddar cheese (shredded or cubed)

Combine all ingredients except potatoes in a large bowl. Fold in potatoes. Spoon into slow-cooker. Cook on high 1 1/2 hours, then on low 2 1/2 hours.


01 May, 2010

Where has time gone?

Don't Daddy and I look so much alike? :)

Six weeks old!

I didn't realize it had been so long since I was on here last. Time flies when you're having fun! I thought I'd give a recap of what's been going on around here since last time I added a post.

Last Saturday was our Soul Winning Marathon at the church. This year instead of going soul winning in our town we decided to go to another town about an hour away and help out a friend who is just starting up a church there. We had 13 groups that went out soul winning (there were at least 2 people in each group) and had 7 people saved. That's quite a few for a town of only 2,000 people! The groups were also able to get heaps of addresses of people that were interested in attending the church there. I wasn't able to go this year. About 10 minutes before we were supposed to leave Abby started to get sick. She started to get really cranky - usually she's quite quiet - and was throwing up most of her bottle. Nick decided we should probably stay home in case she got worse. She seemed fine after a couple of hours.

Sunday was ANZAC day. For those of you from the States ANZAC day is like your Veterans Day/Memorial Day. There is a service at the war memorial here at dawn. Usually I go, but decided I'd better not this year. Nick was up at 4:00am to get ready and pick people up before it started at 5:30am. In church we had a special song about ANZAC Day and the message my husband preached was themed around the day.

Monday Abby was really cranky. We tried all day to get her in to see the doctor, but weren't able to get an appointment until Tuesday. After she had been up and crying almost all day we gave her a bath and put rubbed her down with Calamine lotion. The rash that she had was gettnig worse and spreading on her body. After the bath and lotion she calmed right down and slept from 9:30pm - 6:30am!

Tuesday morning we took Abby to see the doctor and found out that she has eczema. We were given some creams to put on her and they seemed to be helping already by bedtime that night.

Wednesday Abby was much better and the eczema was gone from under her neck. She seemed much happier.

Thursday the Plunket nurse came. Abby now weighs 10 pounds 14 ounces. She's growing like a weed! The nurse was so nice and seems very practical and down to earth. We have been blessed with really great midwives during my pregnancy and for the first 6 weeks after. It's nice to know the Plunket nurse is someone we get along with as well.

Friday was a pretty quiet day at home. Now Nick is sick! :( If it's not one of them it's the other! He's been complaining of a sore throat and he just feels yuck all over. We're praying it won't come to anything. Weekends are not a good time for pastors to be sick!

Today (Saturday) we all went to bus workers meeting and then to visit a couple families. Only one family was home, but we had a nice visit with them. They said they'd be in church tomorrow. Last week they were sick and unable to come. Yeah! I can't wait for Sunday!

Well, that's what's been happening here this week. Hopefully next week I'll be a little better at keeping up with posts! Thought you might enjoy some pictures of the cute girl! She is six weeks old now.

22 April, 2010

Getting so big!

Well, our little Abby is getting bigger! The midwife was just here for her weekly visit to check on us. Abby now weighs 10 pounds 6 ounces! She is getting so big. Quite a ways from what she weighed when she was born (7.2). The midwife also measured her this time and she is just over 22 inches long.

Last night Abby was quite unsettled after church. Nick had gone to do a service with Sarah's family so we were home alone. I wanted to wait up for Nick, so Abby and I curled up together on the couch and watched a DVD together. Most of the time I just sat looking at Abby while she slept in my arms. She is so beautiful! It is an honour to be her Mum. She is such a good baby as well. Last night she slept for 5 1/2 hours. Which is great for me! :)

This photo was taken a few days ago. Doesn't she look so peaceful? We don't purposely leave her hands out. No matter how tight we wrap her she finds a way to get her hands out. She is just so cute! (no, I'm not biased at all - her Grandma thinks she's adorable as well!)

21 April, 2010


Two days ago a good friend passed away. Sarah was so sweet, kind, and caring. I've lost track of all the notes and cards I've recieved from her. She was always writing notes and giving them to people here at church. She was one of the most thoughtful people you would have ever met. When my husband was in America for Bible college she was one of the few people from back here in New Zealand that kept in regular contact with him.

It's a joy to know that Sarah is in Heaven now and is no longer in pain - she is healed from the cancer that was attacking her body. She passed away with a smile on her face. She was always smiling. One thing that I loved about her is that she always laughed at my jokes. :) Not many people laugh at my jokes - probably because they're not very funny!
She was always telling people how they could go to Heaven. She would go for treatments and come back very excited to tell us how many nurses she was able to lead to the Lord. Even in her last days she kept asking my husband to come and tell her family how they could be saved. One of the last things she did was ask her Mum to ask my husband to come and talk to her family about Heaven.
This photo was taken four weeks ago. Abby was a week old and we took her to see Sarah. We had gotten out of hospital the day before and because Sarah wasn't getting out at that stage we took Abby to see Sarah as soon as we could. I'm so glad we did! Sarah was so excited to see us and to meet Abby.

We love you, Sarah, and we miss you, but know you are enjoying Heaven. We will never forget you!