Monday, July 26, 2010

I have room in my car

I get to go (God willing) to a "heart of worship" conference in Winterthur, Switzerland Aug 13-15. Nicole will be coming with me. I signed up to go to a seminar on the Holy Spirit, and another on Prophecy. Nicole will take an art seminar, and another on song writing. I might have room in my car. Anyone else want to go?

Monday Monday!

I had a very hard time waking up I really mean it! I went to pour my coffee and only got hot water. I had forgotten to put coffee in the pot. The phone rang. Someone needed Juergen's work number. I could not think of it to save my life. They must have thought I was drunk. I don't drink...I was just asleep. So I went to find the phone list and gave the man Juergen's number. Then I smell plastic burning. I thought I had turned the burner off on the stove. What I actually did is turn the back burner on the stove. I had melted the plastic handle on a glass lid of a pot. I could have burned the house down. I drank my coffee, and took my vitamins. I felt like popping one of the ADHD pills my boys take. I didn't do that, but man I was ADD this morning! Not good! The kids begin summer vacation on Thursday. I'll be able to sleep in for 6 weeks. That should help me allot. I'm simply too tired.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

natural snail repellent

I'm thinking about using sea shells as a mulch around my jumbo garden sacks. I'm having trouble with snails. They are also very good for tomatoes because they give the plant calcium. Calcium (or a lack of it) causes the end rot you get on tomatoes. So when we go to Texel, I want to bring back buckets of shells to crush. I may even buy some online. I need allot of shells!

Friday, July 23, 2010

a dream

I was having breakfast with a very good friend of mine. We both attend the same church. We both want to preach but it isn’t allowed right now. Our pastor (who is a good man) doesn’t personally believe women should preach. Our church is divided on this subject. I do not push it but it frustrates me. I know many people frustrated because they have spiritual gifts, but find no clear way of using them. Any way, I had an idea today. Perhaps my friend and I could start a women’s ministry to reach our church, and city. I get a word, “ dream”. I would want to meet once every 3 months. We could have good worship, teaching, and prayer in small groups. The goal would be to build women up, help them to dream, support their dreams, and applaud their work. Another serious short coming of our church is it ‘s not good at encouraging the volunteers. I wouldn’t wait for our church to praise what we do, I would create a community that stands behind its people and regularly pats them on the back. Women need a regular watering of appreciation. We don’t get it enough from our husbands and children. We often get over looked or taken for granted in our jobs and volunteer service. I want to change that. And my dream is to do it for women all over the area, not just our church. If I can not preach on Sunday morning, it will not keep me quite. If I can not influence everyone in my church, I can still have influence. Anyway, this is my new idea. Please pray for me. Feel free to send me any ideas of what you have seem and read. I feel like I’ve been in a desert for too long. I do not want to remain in this dry place, and more important, I want to create an oasis for my sisters. They have so much to give, and they are so wonderful. It is painful to see them drying up.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

It's ok

I was worried about my parents because I could not reach them for hours. But they are fine. Thank God. I guess I'm fine too. As you can read, I've felt extra stressed over the past month. It helps to be planning a vacation. We leave in about a month. I have a house sitter, just in case you think you can rob my house. Someone will be here!
It's been very hot in Germany, but the heat broke and we have some rain. I'm thinking this is a picture of my life. Record heat, stress, dryness. Then something breaks, and we have some relief. God knows what we can handle. What's more, He answers prayer. I have been spending much more time praying for my sons. I am hoping to see His salvation! He loves them more then I do. He places orphans in families…nothing we go through is a surprise to God. This gives me courage and comfort.

"Something Beautiful" By Bill Gaither

Something beautiful
Something good
All my confusion
He understood
All I had to offer him
was brokenness and strife
but he mad something
beautiful of my life

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Mom, I have tried to call you over and everything ok?

We have a house sitter!

I have a house sitter for the time we are gone. I didn't even need to call them, they called me. My house will be safe, and my plants well taken care of. I can leave for 2 weeks with out stress!

Texel blog

I have a blog just for our trip to Texel. The address is here...

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Yes we are going to Texel!

Juergen and I sat down for an hour and booked a vacation house on the North Sea. We will have 2 whole weeks uninterrupted as a family. The beach is cold, but we can dig deep holes in the sand and fly kites. I can even bring our crazy dog! I need to find a house sitter, and someone to water my plants! The house we rented is small, but the vacation complex has indoor/out door swimming, bowling, bungee trampolines, mini golf, and a giant indoor play park. We can ride bikes, and go roller skating too. The price was very good. It is just a small amount compared to Thailand. Maybe I'll still get a new bathroom? What's good is I get a vacation. I know I already had a vacation this year (2 if you count my trip to America). I'm just so tired. My life makes me so tired right now. It's stress! I know my boys are just in a difficult stage. I pray they will grow out of it. But for now I'm grateful for this trip.

I think this is were we will go

It isn't Thailand but we will have sand and a pool!

Maybe Texel? Texel is an island off the coast of Holland. We took the kids there once before. They have a very nice vacation village with swimming pools and loads of other activities. I couldn't find a house there last week, but this week there are houses half price. So maybe Texel is our answer?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

my garden

Juergen put up a new rain gutter for me. I have 2 new rain barrels too. So now I can catch more free water for my plants. Water is expensive and we have had some pretty hot days. Here are some photos of my garden. It's doing super great! I have spaghetti squash that wants to take over the whole yard. The cucumbers are also doing wonderful! I ate my first ripe tomato, but most of them are still green. I'm very impressed by my jumbo garden sacks. I'm hoping to put 3 or 4 more in next year. Everything does great in these things.

As far as Thailand is concerned, I just don't know what to do. It's allot of money, but it's also a pretty good investment in family. We can get by with out it...but perhaps we would be much strengthened by it? I just don't know! I feel like I should wait. Maybe God will say yes, go. Or I'll just see what else we should do. As much as I would love to do it, I feel the answer is wait. I have not heard no, but I don't get yes either. It's only 3 weeks away, so it's probably a no. Sad! I just can not do it with out a clear yes.

Friday, July 16, 2010

why Thailand

I have expressed it on my face book page, but not so much on my blog…I am stressed. Our boys are in early puberty. They have issues of respect, and boundaries, being bullied at school, being bullies at home. I don’t want to go into details. They give us stress. We are dealing with it, but it is not so fun. Growing up can be a messy process. At the same time Nicole is preparing for her final year of high school. In Germany they do comprehensive exams . It’s a great deal of stress for her. She must also consider what next. She wants to go to art school. We had thought she would consider biology, but art is her dream. There are art schools near by, but none that do illustration and animation. So we are looking at the possibility of her moving away next summer. That not only makes me sad, but it also involves planning and money. In fact there is tons of planning that has to happen on Nicole’s behalf. Sarah starts school in the fall. Jessica has her final year of school next year. Then we have to figure out “what next” for Jessica. We want our boys to learn to work. Thomas will turn 13 in September. He will then be allowed to get a part time job (German child labor laws). So perhaps he can carry newspapers in the fall. The money isn’t so much of an issue for us (thank God). We just want him to learn to work. We see how fast they grow up, and how much they must learn. It is daunting! So what has Thailand got to do with any of this? Everything! Nicole will be gone before we know it. You have to dance with Cinderella before she is gone! and 3 weeks away from everyone and everything is the most intense way to train your children. It is a daily non interrupted school. And Thailand is a great place to distress. It is cheap. I never have to say, “no you can not order that shrimp”. Somehow allowing your growing boys to eat anything and everything makes them more open to all you say. A few friends have said we should go someplace, but it doesn’t need to be Thailand. We have been to plenty of other places, but no other place has really left our entire family so relaxed and happy as Thailand. Even Jessica loves it there. In Cyprus for example, Jessica hid in the kitchen almost the entire time. It was great for most of us, but not for Jessica. When Jessica is stressed out, I’m stressed out. The boys are treated like kings in Thailand. Everyone smiles at them, and tells them how lucky they are. On the one hand you don’t want your children to be spoiled, but on the other hand no one in Germany tells them they are blessed. After a few weeks in Thailand they actually begin to realize how privileged their lives are. They actually begin to show signs of gratitude (an almost unheard of trait for a German teenager). You will never be a happy person if you see the glass as half empty all the time. In Thailand they are reminded how blessed they are. It is not me, or Juergen telling them. They are told by every hard working waiter, and taxi driver, and Elephant trainer. They see how hard the people in Thailand work, and how poor they are there. They appreciate the family they are in, and receive more of what we try to teach them (at least this is what happen last year). I have not seen this effect in Italy, or America, or Holland, Israel, China, Cyprus or Germany. It is only in Thailand we can live like kings and come away feeling the responsibility that comes to those who have allot. So I guess this is my long way of saying why I want to go to Thailand. I am stressed and I want a sure way of recharging my batteries. I want a concentrated time to influence my kids. I want one last family vacation with Nicole. I want my sons to realize again that life is good, and they are very blessed. I want sunshine, cool sea breezes, perspective and frozen lemon aid. I want to have a silk prom dress custom made for Nicole. I want to see Jessica running to the swimming pool and playing with the whole family. I want to see Sarah spending her days with out care swimming (she is such a fish). School and all the homework and peer pressure begins for Sarah in the fall. I want all my troubles and worries to seem like they are a million miles away. I want rest so I can dream again. I want to gain back my strength so I can face the year ahead. I do not need a new bathroom, I need a break.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

tempted to go to Thailand

We haven't finished planning and scheduling the remodeling of our bathroom. It needs to be done, but when is the question. Maybe we should put it off another year. The airline prices to Bangkok are very low. We still have lots of vacation time. It's easy to find a good vacation rental. Not many people are traveling to Thailand because of the resent unrest. Nicole will graduate (God willing) next spring. She wants to go to the USA next summer. So we could call it a final whole family trip. We could spend the bathroom money and go to Thailand for 3 weeks. I'm not sure what to do...go and have some very good family time, or stay and invest in my house. The one seems so self indulgent, but the kids grow up so fast. You can not gather them back once they are gone. Bathrooms can always be remodeled.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


I take the kids to the movies this afternoon, and then we watch the final of the world cup. It's bitter sweet. I'm glad Germany won last night, and you can not win every time. But they really could have won it all if they didn't get paralyzed by fear. Fear kills me too...I can not let it rob me of my joy! God goes before me and He knows the way!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

So I'm thinking Spain!

is it just me?

Here I was minding my own business when all of a sudden life just got so complicated. I don’t think there is enough L’Oreal in the world to cover the gray my boys are giving me.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Jump start Art at OSU

We are looking at sending Nicole to Jump start Art at Orgon State University if she can get in. here is a video of the program...

and here is a web site...

We hope she can get in summer 2011. I guess they only accept a third of the kids that apply. Nicole is a good artist, but doesn't get allot of instruction like American kids do. Most of what she learns is art history.

The kids summer camp


Thursday, July 08, 2010

If you win they run nude, and if you lose they run nude!

( from Time) Larissa Riquelme, the captivating lingerie model who enchanted soccer fans around the world with her enthusiastic support of the Paraguayan World Cup team, saw her pledge to run nude through the streets of Paraguay end in heartbreak when Spain defeated her favorite team in the quarterfinals last weekend.

The beautiful Paraguayan has good news for her eager fans who were disappointed by the loss. Riquelme says she will run naked through Asuncion, even though Paraguay did not win the World Cup. The curvy model says her nude run "will be a present to all of the players, and for all the people in Paraguay to enjoy."

on May 27, 2010 Diego Maradona, the legendary football player and the coach of Argentina National Team which had to fight hard to qualify for the finals of the World Cup has promised to run naked if Argentina lifts the FIFA Football World Cup.

The future belongs to Germany!

It was sad to watch Germany lose to Spain last night. They seemed paralyzed by fear. I had to talk to the kids this morning. They were so sad. All I could say is Germany is young…and they will be the team to beat going forward. After everyone was gone to school and work , I went to my garden and worked off my sorrow. There is nothing like getting your hand dirty and working up some honest sweat to give you a perspective. I hope Klose breaks the world cup record for most goals scored. We will be cheering for him on Saturday. It’s sad we lost, but I’m so proud of our young team! We will definitely be hungry for the cup in 2014! Spain has never made it to the finals of the world cup. I can imagine the dancing in the streets! My friend Bill Jackson is a missionary in Spain. he e-mailed me. He said he saw more then a few people jumping into the fountains, and honking their horns. Everyone wants to win. Spain just wanted it more! The future belongs to us!!!

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

We lost

We were all so excited to watch Germany take on Spain. I could see how nervous Germany looked at the start of the game. That's never a good sign. Spain way out played us. We only lost by one point, but it was not that close. Spain was much better today! My kids are very sad. I washed the paint off Sarah's face just now. I tried to talk to the boys. Germany has a very young team. They were so exciting to watch in this world cup. We should be very proud of them. I'm sorry they lost, but so proud of our young team. Congratulations Spain. I can imagine the joy you must be having on your streets. We got to experience a small bit of that joy. It felt so good while it lasted!

Saturday, July 03, 2010


Germany goes into the semifinals of the World Cup after destroying Diego Maradona's highly-rated Argentina 4-0. Unbelievable! I never ever dreamed such a game. I almost felt sorry for Argentina. Man oh man!!!!

Game day...a must win!

It's 7:30 am on Saturday and I'm awake watering my garden. That's love! I could be sleeping in until 11 am. It will be very hot today , 100F+. Germany plays football today. I'm holding my breath. I hope they win. You have to respect Argentina! They are very good! But Holland beat Brazil, so I am hopeful we can beat our giant too!

Friday, July 02, 2010


Juergen eat breakfast with me outside under our pergola this morning. It was beautiful. It's very hot, so I watered the garden again. Juergen even watered the grape himself. He doesn't often care for plants. It's cute when he does! I also watched videos on you tube about tomato disease. I already have some "end rot" on one of my tomatoes. The tomatoes are growing, but the end of the tomato is brown and rotten. I learned you need to add calcium to the soil. I added some Tomato fertilizer. I may also go get calcium to add. Apart from that, the plants look good. I am taking a few of Philip's friends to the pre teen group at church today. I am also dreaming of a vacation in Thailand. I would almost say forget the new bathroom...lets go to Thailand! I don't know what it is about that place, but I always want to be there! I guess it's the one place we have found everyone in our family loves. And when you have a family of 7 with so many special needs, that's allot! Italy was nice, Cyprus was nice but Thailand...always Thailand!