Where Would You Like To Go?

October 31, 2011

Fall Festivites

Our fun started on Saturday night - when Phoebe, Emma, & Baylee decided to have a Fall Festival.  This mama was excited to have a reason to dress up her little girl for a fun get together!  After a few days of trying to figure out what her costume would be and whether I wanted to make one or not - we found this dress and I thought if I could find a tierra we'd be good to go - and then I did!
Our little princess had so much fun!!
bippity boppity boo!
getting prepped on how to win the basket toss
all the kiddos dressed up
Ryleigh & daddy doing the cookie walk...
On Monday, I thought it'd be cute for her to be dressed appropriately :)  The bib is courtesy of her Rock and I thought the tutu (thanks Sarah!) just made it that much cuter!

Happy Halloween from Mada!

October 28, 2011

Divine Provider

During language today, Mme Lalao asked us to share a story (in Malagasy of course) with her about our 1st days of being in Madagascar.  She wanted us to each tell about a situation that occurred in which we were “gaga” (shocked) about something.  We both managed to tell about a time when something had shocked us but in both cases it was shocked in a good way.  She seemed surprised about this – our stories were not what she had expected.  As we talked more about our 1st few weeks in the country, it really made me thankful for all of your prayer support.  There were times when we were overwhelmed by not being able to communicate but in reality those times were short lived.  There were so many things that could have thrown us off track, really gotten us down, or made us just hide out in our house.  However, this didn’t happen.  Instead we fell in love with all of the quirks and differences.  Yes, our life looks very different now.  Meals take longer, floors need to be swept more often, I speak like a 5 year old, and there are more animals, people, and pousse pousses in the road than cars – but all of it has become our “normal”.  We know this has nothing to do with who we are but Who we serve.  It’s because you have been faithful to lift us up.  Our Lord has been faithful to provide everything we need – physically, mentally, & spiritually.  He is the Divine Provider.

October 24, 2011

Faith of a Child

Lately our homework has consisted of reviewing the verses we read in class and writing a short devotional. You know that I love writing, especially about the things the Lord teaches me through Scripture.  However, this is often a hard task because of how limited I am in the language.  I have to find ways to express complete thoughts with the words that I know. I thought I’d give you a glimpse into what that looks like! 

Scripture - Mark 10:13-16

Devotional - or as Mme Lalao likes to say "Spiritual Food"

An'ny toan ny ankizy ny fanjakan'Andriamanitra noho ny finoan'ny ankizy.  Tena samihafa ny finoan'ny ankizy sy olona efa lehibe.  Tsy misy fanontaniana momba izay lazain'Andriamanitra, fa marina izany.  Hino an'Andriamanitra fa tsy zavatra hafa ny ankizy.  Ka ohatra tena tsara amin'ny fomba tokony ho izy ny finoantskia ny ankizy.

Translation - The kingdom of God belongs to the children because of their faith.  A child's faith is very different than an adult's.  There is no questioning that what God says is true.  A child will believe in God and nothing else.  So the children are the perfect example of how our faith should be.

Short and sweet but atleast I can explain it in Malagasy!  Progress is being made!  Praise the Lord!!

October 20, 2011

Nice Platitudes

I was reading a Christian magazine that my mom had passed along through one of our care packages and came across a statement that has really had me thinking.  The author, referring to different Scripture references, said that most of us consider some verses as "nice platitudes" instead of commands from God Almighty.  I just had to ask myself if I regarded God's Word as such.  My immediate answer is a resounding "NO!" but I wondered if anyone looking in on my life would say the same. 
Do I:
~ turn the other cheek? Matt 5:39 
~ show my right hand to my left hand? Matt 6:1-4
~ seek His kingdom 1st? Matt 6:33
~ not worry about tomorrow? Matt 6:34
~ pray believing I will recieve? Mark 11:20-26
~ judge others? Luke 6:37
~ allow my heart to be troubled? John 14:1
~ give grace to those who hear? Eph. 4:29
~ do all things without grumbling? Phil. 2:14
Oh and how the list could go on!
There's no second guessing here.  I know that I fall amazingly short of every single one of these at one time or another.  Whether it's a command that I daily fall short of or maybe one that happens every so often - it doesn't matter.  It's still a sin and to me it says that I'm not really "getting" that it's a command.  Perhaps I do sometimes live like these are suggestions or nice platitudes; that doesn't change the truth about what they are.  Each of these and countless others are a part of His infalliable Word.  His precious love letter He chose to give to us.  Honestly, I know several of these by memory, but somehow they're not always the words that pop in my head when faced with a situation in which to apply them.  The enemy is talented.  He is cunning.  He is out to destroy.  Thankfully there is a command that I can cling to...
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleans us from all unrighteousness."
 1 John 1:9 
Grateful for a faithful Father when I am such an unfaithful child.

October 15, 2011


We recently read an article online about this year's college freshmen.  It said that they were born after the web so therefore they have no recollection of a time before the internet existed.
 If you say Amazon - they are more likely to think of the internet shopping site instead of the river in South America. 
Right around that same time we learned a new Malagasy word.
The best English translation is 
"replaces the brain"
want to know what it is?
a computer
pretty fitting don't you think??

October 11, 2011

Why Language School?

There are days when I think...really...couldn't I just get a translator to go everywhere I go and speak Malagasy for me?  Then I am reminded of this video that a friend found while in training.  It may not be 100% accurate but atleast it makes me laugh and reminds me that it is indeed important!  Hope you enjoy!

October 8, 2011


Steve and I both enjoy going to the movies.  I personally, enjoy the whole experience...especially the previews.  Ask anyone that has been to a movie with me and they know that it's absolutely necessary to get there in time for the previews or really there's no reason at all to go.  It's true.  However, I'm not one to watch movies multiple times.  There are a few exceptions but unless it's one of my favorites I won't sit though it again.  This being said...my daughter is a completely different scenario.  I had no idea that a 6/7/8 month old could enjoy something on a screen for so long.  Not only that, she's quite content to watch the same ones over and over and over and over.  I never thought that she'd be that interested or that I'd find such relief in it!
I'm almost confident that I'm not sure how we would have made it the 13 hour flight without Veggie Tales/Praise Baby...
and there are times when I just need 10 more minutes to finish a blog...
so I'll put on her Jesus Loves Ryleigh DVD...
...and still other times when she truly just needs 20 more minutes of down time...
and who really can say no to Elmo??
I now have watched Elmo/Jesus Loves Ryleigh/Praise Baby more times than I have watched my favorite movies.  Who knew?
So, basically I have a 9 month old that already has her favorite movies - does this make me a bad parent?!?

October 4, 2011

Happy 9 months!!

Ryleigh - You're 9 months old today!!  This is what you looked like this time last year...
You're growing into such a beautiful girl -
You weigh 18.5 lbs (48th percentile) and are 28.3 inches long ( 79th percentile).
We love that you enjoy books so much. They keep you entertained when you are playing by yourself and you think turning the pages while we are reading to you is one of the best things ever. We hope your Bible is your "go to" book as you get older and that every story there leads you into a passionate love relationship with your Creator.
Music must constantly be playing in your head because you dance no matter where you are or what else is going on.  The smile on your face tells us that you are already making joyful noises to your Father in heaven.
Just recently you've decided that you know how to get from a sitting position to laying down and you love doing so.  If there is something you want to have that's out of your reach - you squirm/army crawl until you have it.  However, being up on your feet is your favorite way to travel - you do still need help from daddy or mommy or atleast a toy!
You're a bundle full of giggles whether you are in the bathtub or in the pool.  Water just makes you laugh and you love splashing around.  Playing peek-a-boo with your daddy and singing with mommy are 2 of the highlights of your day. 
You are such a happy baby and are sleeping 12 hours every  night - except when those teeth are coming in.  Speaking of teeth you developed a mouth full this month!  4 have come in up top and 2 more are making their way in on the bottom.
We have enjoyed the past 9 months more than you know and pray daily that you know you are loved - not just by us but by your Amazing Savior.  His joy is so evident in your smiles and giggles - we anxiously await the day that you will know Him personally.
We love you baby girl!

October 2, 2011

Sunday Morning Jam Time

We woke up to an absolutely beautiful and cool morning today.  As soon as Ryleigh was ready for church, I turned on her "Jesus Loves Ryleigh" DVD that her great Pop & Nanna gave her for Easter, so we could finish getting ourselves ready.  I thought she was getting a little sleepy (as it was almost her morning nap time) but apparently not...oh and she is teething so that would be why she's chewing on her hand (grandparents - not because we're starving her).  Hoping this brings a smile to your face and serves as a reminder to always praise Him with a joyful heart!