Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Coming to America...Evidence of a changed heart....

Wow!  It’s been a long time since I’ve written.  I have been trying to write for many days now but I just have not had the time…that is I’ve not had the time with out any children needing my attention.  Being a mother is an incredible thing but I’m not going to pretend that it is not trying on every part of you.  

It’s trying on your patience (letting a child be a child…even if it means letting them sing the same song over and over and over…), your brain (figuring out how to explain things a million different ways so that your little one finally gets it), your heart (when your child doesn’t obey and you have to discipline them because you love them), your body (well…do I have to write anything about that?)…

But genuinely – being a mother is the best…single most important thing I think I’ve ever done in life (besides giving my life to my Savior).  My boys are a blessing from above and everyday I am in awe at the people they are becoming.  Anyway, that was a bunny trail!  

Tonight we went to a weekly fellowship that we have every Wednesday night.  Last Wednesday it was at our house and tonight it was at Pii Che An’s and Pii Mamms house.  It’s always a great time of fellowship and fun and most of all FOOD!  Great Thai food.  

I can always count on eating something I’ve never eaten before on Wednesday nights…whether I want to or not.  Anyway, as we sat in their home…well, let me describe everything to you.  It’s typical for Thai homes not to have a table or chairs.  They usually have a small coffee table that is low to the floor and everyone sits on the floor on mats.  

There were a total of 7 children that normally come (along with 9 adults) and then about 4 more that showed up because they saw a bunch of farang faces.  So…all 11 children are running and round and having a blast in this rather small house that is one large room with a petition made out of an entertainment system.  

There is an array of thai food laid out on the table…Wonderful florescent lighting – as usual (I actually don’t hardly notice it anymore)…and the heat is stifling but there are two fans blowing on the next to lowest setting rotating around the room.  

Everyone is chatting away and having a wonderful time.  After chatting in Thai for a while my brain went to mush for a minute to recuperate from all the work I just did.  I just kind of got quiet and looked around the room watching everyone having a good time for a minute.  As my eyes wondered they settled upon an empty shelf on the upper part of the wall near the door.  

A huge smile came upon my face…that was were CheAn’s idols were.  Every Thai home has a shelf similar to this where a monument to budda always resides…everyday they sacrifice food to the idols and say their prayers.  CheAn has taken down all of his idols and now all that remains is an empty shelf to testify that his heart has been forever changed to know the one true God!!!  

I just looked at John, patted his leg and smiled.  CheAn came to know of Jesus because he responded to one of the tracts that John and Clinton had been passing out.  We were there in his house fellowshipping with him because there was a change in his heart…because John and Clinton had gone out as they always do…

You know, right now is kind of a tough time because we are getting ready to come to America to visit for 3 months.  Everyone told us of this “in between time” before going home for a visit.  They said it’s rough because you are ready to go and visit but your still here…the things you normally do usually get put on hold because you are preparing to leave…culture stress usually sets in…I thought that we wouldn’t go through this but we have felt this a little bit.  Tonight at CheAn’s was an encouragement…knowing that Christ through us is doing a work here…

I wrote it on our newsletter but if you didn’t know – we are going to be in America…EATING GREAT FOOD…for sure on the 17th!  We’re really excited and let me tell you what an incredible thing God did for us.

We were 3 days away from our deadline of needing $1,200 to pay for our tickets.  We were hanging in there…and praying and the money come in!  THANKS in LARGE part to John’s family!!!  Thank you!!!  The really awesome thing is that we called the day before we had to pay for our tickets to confirm that we could come in the following day and the lady informed us that there might be a promotion that would reduce the cost of our tickets!  Needless to say we were excited!!!  

So we waited for her to call us back and when she did we found out there was a promotion that we could apply to our tickets.  She gave us the new prices and we started figuring how much we would be saving.  (we needed to purchase either train tickets or plane tickets from Hat Yai to Bangkok).  So when we did the calculations something kept coming out wrong – then we realized that when John first converted the amount that we needed from baht to dollar – he used the wrong conversion rate and it made a 200 dollar difference!!!  

GET THIS!  If that lady hadn’t told us about the promotion we would not have been able to pay for our tickets!  The promotion made the difference that we needed!  Isn’t that awesome!?!  I was in awe.  So we’re coming soon and we can’t wait!  Well, part of me is torn – I’m going to be really sad about not seeing my Thai friends for 3 months and our home and work is here.  But man!  I can’t wait to see my family!!!  Hug my friends!!!  Share our vision!!  EAT AMERICAN FOOD!!!  

Wow…it’s amazing how much I just wrote!  Well…I made a few short lists for fun!

Things I’m looking forward to:

  • Being on American soil with fellow Americans

  • Food!

  • Dryers

  • Downy

  • Dishwashers

  • Central heating and air

  • Regular lighting (no florescent please)

  • Customer service (don’t take it for grated people!)

  • Driving on the right side of the road

  • Southern hospitality

  • Mexican food

  • Hot water at the sink

  • A bathtub


  • Walmart!!!


Things I’m going to miss while I’m gone:
  • THAI food!

  • The many smells of Thailand

  • My friends

  • Speaking Thai

  • The Thai people

  • Quick – CHEAP food

  • Studying Thai with Phon

  • Having an instant open door just because I’m white

  • Opening up the house in the morning

  • Waiing people (greeting in Thailand where you put your hand together and bow)

  • Bathrooms with sprayers and a drain on the floor (the bathrooms are made to be wet…all the water goes down a drain in the floor – no separation between bathing area, toilet and sink)

  • The look on my husbands beat red face after returning from being out in the villages

  • Josiah being a people magnet

  • My Thai friends!!!  

Well, America here we come – it won’t be too much longer now!  Please keep us in your prayers as we continue on and prepare to come to America.  Thank you for reading!  

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Beebee up Josiah's Nose!!!

We had an eventful evening tonight.  I was getting the boys ready to go get some food and I turned around to tend to Jude and all of a sudden I hear Josiah behind me screaming.  I turn around and he’s blowing his nose and rubbing it like crazy.  Josiah had stuck an air soft beebee pellet up his NOSE!!!  It’s a small yellow beebee.  

It must have been laying around from one of the times that John was playing with the Garsee boys.  That thing would not come out for anything.  I finally got Josiah calmed down and we tried blowing his nose for about 5 minutes and I realized that that little ball was not coming out any time soon.

I called John and informed him that I was going to take him to the hospital.  It was so far back in his nose that I couldn’t see it unless I had light shining in his nose and he had his head tilted way back.  I was a little worried.  My imagination started running about it slipping back into the unknown and my little man having a beebee lodged in his head.  

We got into the car and headed to the government hospital here praying all the way.  John met us there.  I wanted to take him to the nice hospital where Jude was born but it would have been too much money that we don’t have right now.  By the time we had arrived Josiah had calmed down and you wouldn’t know he had a beebee stuck up his nose if we weren’t there to tell you.  The emergency room waiting area and reception is completely open…there are no walls.  

John said “You know you’re in a hospital in Thailand when you have to fight off bugs while you wait in the emergency room”.  As we were waiting we had to fight off bugs.  Every time we turned around we had a flying ant landing on us…or we were dodging a gigantic beetle that was flying around.  We sat in a small room listening to a little boy being treated because of a cut…the poor boy was screaming with all his might.  Bi Leew Bi Leew…Mai Aow Mai Aow…(go away…go away…I don’t want it…I don’t want it…)  

It didn’t scare Josiah though…he was having too much fun with the flashlights that they keep on their desks to check people out.  While we were waiting John and I pondered laying him on the bench and using my handy dandy finger nail kit to tweeze that ball out ourselves…but we thought better of it.  After a good wait a Dr. showed up and spoke pretty decent English…they laid Josiah on a bed in the wide open Emergency room and wrapped him up like a worm so he couldn’t move.

We really had an audience then.  Josiah enjoyed the worm part and even laughed at the first attempt to retrieve the ball (because it tickled).  They wedged open his nostril, used a weird looking pair of tweezers and out it came!  Josiah was screaming by then because it apparently doesn’t feel too good having your head held down while someone wedges your nostril open.  He got up and shed a few tears and was over it in a flash.  

They gave me the beebee to keep as a souvenir.  I’m going to put it in Josiah’s baby book when we get to the states…I still can’t believe he stuck that beebee up his nose.  Here’s the kicker…we visited the emergency room and had this done for a little over $3 dollars (125 baht)!!!!!  Can you believe that?  $3 dollars!  And that’s with two huge bottles of medicine that they insisted that we buy (they didn’t believe me when I told them that there was only one beebee so they wanted him to take medicine to fight infection if there were more that went into his stomach).  It’s a good thing too!  

Well, I just wanted to share about Josiah’s run in with a beebee.  Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Thank you for stopping in! After checking out the pictures don't forget to scroll down to my most recent post to view the new videos.

In the back is Nawng Bang (the small Thai boy), Pii On, Me, Katherine and John..and in the front are some of the children from Baan Bawk Maw...
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John and Chase setting up the screen...
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You see the lady on the left? She was too shy to let me know she wanted to be in the picture at the last minute she hopped in there...she got a real kick out of seeing herself on the little camera screen...
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Josiah, Asia and some of the children from Baan Bawk Maw...
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Faces from Baan Bawk Maw
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A cute little boy that was quite persistant about me taking his picture...over and over and over and over....:) How could I resist?
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Some children watching the video...
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Videos and more...

Sawatdee ka!!!

I just recently sent out our May newsletter.  Please click here to read it:

I wanted to tell you guys a funny story.  One time we were driving through Hat Yai praying and I just kept noticing this name on all the clubs and girly bars as we went by.  I thought to myself…”Who is this guy?  We just need to pray that something happens to his finances and all these clubs that he owns would be shut down!”  So…I turned to the ladies in the car and said “Who is this Johnny Walker guy?  Have you guys ever seen him around town?  Is he a farang that came into Hat Yai opening up all these bars?”  

Amber sweetly looked at me and informed me that Johnny Walker is an alcohol label!!!  I had no idea.  I had never heard of Johnny Walker…anyway, I thought that was kinda humorous…I like to be able to laugh at with myself at myself sometimes.  

We went out to Baan Bawk Maw the other day and I have some video from there.  The people there are sooo sweet.  Especially the children…they love to have their picture taken and then see it on the camera.  I could stay out there all night just to take their pictures…it just fills them with such joy and it does the same to me too.  Here is a video from there: 001.asf

The other day I was waiting in the car for John to return and I decided to make a video for all of you…so here it is:

Have you ever wondered where rubber comes from?

We came upon some kids swimming…

Why did the chicken cross the road?  Here is a short clip of the village John has been working in recently…

This is a clip of a Muslim village John has been working in…The last part of the clip is a guy on a motorcycle with his foot pushing a boy on a bike…going really fast.

Well, that’s it for now!  Thanks for stopping by!  Please be in prayer for us regarding our visit to America and diligence in studying Thai!!!!  Thank you for reading!!!  

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Videos!!!! Finally!!!

Hey everyone!

I figured out and successfully uploaded some videos and you can view them by clicking below:
They are all .asf files...I know if you have Windows Media Player you will be able to view these videos. Enjoy!

A home in the village
Another home in the village

Kids in the village

Dog Danger - One of the dangers John faces when he goes out is the dogs. They are loose, aggressive and unfamiliar with white faces.

RawngPlengGan - This means singing together. While they were out in the village they came across a house that had one of our yellow Jesus signs hanging on their home. They had taken it from when we posted them up at a busy intersection. These people have been Christian for many years and were very excited to see us. They sang 'How Great Thou Art' together in Thai.

Village View - Here is a quick pan of one of the roads and house that John walked down in this village. The lady and other guy you see are a couple that have come here for 3 months to help out on their internship from FIRE school of ministry.

Ru Leew - This means 'already know'. This is a short video of the family I mentioned before telling us their testimony of how God healed this lady from disease. Clinton is translating while John films.

Your Gospel - A clip of Clinton quoting Curry Blake (John's dad) as they prepare to go out to the villages.

Josiah Blowing Out His Candles - Here is Josiah from his 4th birthday blowing out his candles (April 16th).

Jude Smiling - I finally caught Jude smiling on camera!! Here it is... **Sorry this one isn't working yet. It turns out the file is a .mov and I'm having trouble getting it to play online. :) I'll be posting more videos and pictures soon! Thanks for reading!!!!! Steph