Wednesday, March 31, 2010

It was not an April Fool's Day joke...

Words have to be carefully considered...but photos will suffice. A new adventure has begun for our family. Godspeed.
From 2010-04-01

From 2010-04-01

From 2010-04-01
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Deployment Goals

Mike asked us tonight during family circle to discuss our deployment goals.
  •  Zander(8) - read for Mike (he says, "Ever since Uncle Nate came no one will let me read my book." ::snort:: I had Nate drill him with games and such but he is sure he hasn't learned a thing.
  • Stacia (4) - count in ENGLISH, she's stuck in Japanese....and recite the alphabet
  • Nolan(10) - read the New Testament
  • Arielle(12) - Play something of Beethoven's
  • Jared(16) - grow a goatee - WHAT??????? , spend at least 30 min a day playing with siblings, max out at bench on 160 lb, try to update blog for Dad at least 3x a week
  • De'Etta(not as old as dirt) - Workout 5 days a week, get those new tests scheduled ::snort::, memorize James (or Ps 91 because it's really difficult for me), lose weight
  • Michael(ancient) - Memorize I John (or 2 John), workout 5 days a week, lose 2 inches of my waist, finish story about Matthew.
Now, I'll have to see if the older four want to send us any deployment goals. I suspect theirs are things like, "survive spring term," "work,"......
 
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Package

video
Mom - what fun to have a package to open tonight. Great timing. I thought you would get a kick out of Zander's reaction. Note he's stressed and his been chewing his shirt. All who love our alphabet guy, please do be praying for him to adjust to Mike leaving. I would like to get through this deployment without a big regression to more observable autistic tendencies.

We've been looking for a whistle for Jared....and well everything was great.
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Countdown

Mike worked late last night (after 10 pm) so that he'd have today off. He spent some time talking with his Mom. She sounds very determined to get well and they had a good visit.

We worked on taxes. We were determined to get them finished before Mike leaves. We loaded MP3 players for Mike. I ordered a copy of Soul Craving by Erwin McManus. We're reading it together while Mike travels.

We stashed surprises in Mike's suitcases. This is always dangerous as he's a good snoop. Here he is with the "kisses" we're sending with him....one for each night he's in place.

After all was done we went bowling. Stacia's a blur.


Jared is pleased to announce that he beat Mike in both games.

My hero
Deployment roses....I always get six before he leaves and six when he returns. I was a bit concerned to receive a dozen...but three are for Arielle and three are from Stacia. We'll get a matching set next fall.
We've done much more since I arrived home on Sunday...but we've been living in the moment and I'll have to blog it later.


11 hours....

Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...


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Monday, March 29, 2010

Tale of Two Travels?


This is our life today....two suitcases being unpacked, two being packed....general chaos...but now there's order and Mike's packed....while I'm unpacked.

I'll finish blogging my Korean adventure after Mike departs.

Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...
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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Amusing Street Sign

In the past 6 - 9 months our city has added a few street names and signs. Our commander was asked for things the city could to to make Misawa more "Troop Friendly" and having street signs is huge...... Can you read the name? "Say Hello Street". I love it....it's a good reminder to communicate with your neighbors.
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...
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Friday, March 26, 2010

Faith Lift or Faithlift

I've been asked, and have a few moments, so will explain what I'm doing in Korea this week.

No, I am NOT getting a facelift. I AM getting a faith lift. Faithlift is a local conference hosted by Yongsan Chapel/PWOC. It is interdenominational.  There are over 200 women in attendance...that's my guess and I'll look for an official number today. ::grin:: I know over 200 were registered.

From the name you may have guessed that our focus is to help women prosper in their faith.

What am I personally doing here?

Wednesday I spoke to the Yongsan PWOC...helped decorate South Post chapel for Faithlift, and went out to dinner with Adriane's family. Adriane is this year's Faithlift Director. I also met our new regional financial liaison. Sese is an amazing answer to prayer! I met with a Korean/American missionary who lives in China and has a heart and ministry in North Korea...but I'll not share more of that here.

Thursday I attended Yongsan's Leadership Brunch. I helped to answer questions about how our new region functions to support local groups. Lauren and I went sightseeing and had a blast. I spent time encouraging a few leaders.

Friday we went to the MARKET in the a.m. Loved being back in an Asia marked...loved the haggling...love my new "coach" purse. ::snort:: I connected, IN PERSON, with two of our regional team....Rachelle and Lauren. We met with the Yongsan Garrison Chaplain. He offered some great suggetions for us as we brainstorm our on-going training and mentoring of this region's PWOC leaders. We then met with Ch. Arthur Pace and  conducted our first-ever Asia Region board meeting. Sese, Rachelle, Lauren, Ch. Pace and I began....and Tracy  - what a sport - zipped in from the airport and joined us in process. We joined prayer warriors in progress.  We  had dinner, kicked off faithlift....and it is good.

Saturday- we have yet to see all that God has planned for this day. I know that I'll be facilitating/speaking at two workshops.  I know we'll hear from annointed ladies of God in our main sessions, Kwanda Dixon and Brenda Marlin. I sense the transforming work that God plans to accomplish today in our personal lives, in our marriages, families, during deployments and stress......God has good things to share with His daughters today. I have been excited and awake for quite some time.....
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Fun Visits

I'm learning a few things about Korea. I am falling in love with Asia all over again. Korea is divided into various "areas" for Army purposes. Thursday, I visited the area 2 miles from the DMZ. Until very recently much of Korea was an unaccompanied tour, but recently families have been allowed to come to Korea with their military members.  Our newest PWOC group is from this installation.

Vikki graciously invited me to go look and see. Lauren thought it would be fun as well. I pictured the Camp we were going to see as a tent city. Check this out....
From 2010-03-24_korea
The city surrounding the Camp has got to be three times the size of Misawa. The installation itself does not have all the perks of a big installation....but it is NOT a tent city. ::snort::
From 2010-03-24_korea
We took about an hour ride on the subway. The one thing that does disappoint me about Misawa is we have no public transportation. I LOVE riding on the subways and trains. Women from up at this camp often take the hour subway ride for doctor's appointments, commissary trips (their commissary IS much smaller than Misawa's), PWOC (before one began up here) etc. The trains were much the same as in Japan....though Japan's commuters are not pushy....just efficient.
From 2010-03-24_korea
I love the scenery around here. GREAT mountains, however, it's common to see high rise apartments built right up the sides of the mountains.
From 2010-03-24_korea
From 2010-03-24_korea
Six months ago, I thought that red circle with steam rising meant TEA....now I know it means ONSEN. Korea also has public baths....I don't know the Korean name because Vikki and Lauren were surprised that Americans do onsens in Japan.
From 2010-03-24_korea
Zipping along on the subway, it was hard to get good photos with the point and click. I've been amazed at all the churches in Korea. Korea is 30% Christian. I love the nightsky with all the red crosses lit up. The above church had a massive photo of Jesus on the side of it. My favorite was a church that had it's name on the side of it in English. I wanted a photo for my amusing sight feature.....The name...."Church that Jesus Wants". ::grin::

I have to talk to the ladies in photos, before I post any more to see if they are o.k. being made infamous on the blog. ::snort::

Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Korea!

I'm here. The drive along the Han river at night was beautiful.

There are lit up red crosses on all the churches. I was told this is because they are "sanctuaries" in any bombing raids. (That'll preach!) It was inspiring to see so many lit up red crosses along the drive.

My room is nice. I'm excited to be here. I slept most the day - off and on. I discovered that there is a snobby lounge at the Tokyo airport....but there is also a public lounge with CNN...recliners and such. I slept.

It was surreal to hear safety messages in Korean and read Japanese subtitles......but I think I have the message memorized so I wasn't too worried.

First meeting is tomorrow at 9:15 a.m. Hard to believe I'm here....Korea! Wow. I'm humbled and honored and looking forward to exploring a bit.....not sure of the logistics of that....guess I better see about getting into the "system" so that I can get back on base once I get off base. ::snort::
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Monday, March 22, 2010

This is me.....


It steadies my nerves to blog - so I will write a bit this a.m. LOL This is me. Today I fly to Korea. Yes, I've got meds, though God has been gracious and I've not thrown up ONCE this month. LOL I have a six hour layover in Tokyo - I plan to be STILL and know that He is God....yep, I plan to walk intimately with Him in the solitude of Tokyo International Airport. I'm looking forward to it...have my notes, my Bible, my journal, and my laptop.

I would appreciate prayers for God's presence to flow through all that is done this week at Faithlift (and all the surrounding events). I sense He's going to show up BIG....He's been invited, many have been praying and fasting for this week...now we have the excitement of walking it out! I would also appreciate prayers for this middle-aged vessel and all other tired vessels who are participating this week. Enough said. It's all about HIM and not us.

Mike is home. Poor man is TIRED...but dragged himself out on a date with me while Jared was at Human Video practice. We unpacked his bag to repack it for me. ::snort::

As a matter of fact, I MAY blog from Korea. I plan to personally pay for Internet in my room if possible....so that myself and all my peeps can skype their chicklets at home (as desired and/or needed). LOL
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

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This is Mike....

Barely home and Mike was teaching....I LOVE this man.  We had saved a coconut to open when he was home....mostly because I hadn't a clue how to open the thing without a machete. ::snort::
The kids were suitably impressed with my stories of coconuts and hikes in the Philippines, stories of coconuts falling on Tod Hall's head....and Mike's stories of WW2 medics hooking iv tubes up between coconuts and wounded troops. 
Unfortunately, the coconut had sat too long and we had fermented coconut milk....coconut vinegar? Coconut wine?  We'll try again with a fresh coconut next week. LOL
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Drama and more

Next week our children from the R.E. (Religious Ed) program and the Middle School drama team will be treating us to a special Palm Sunday Evening Service. I was thrilled to find out that this a.m. was a rehearsal. I'll touch down in Misawa at 6:45 p.m. next Sunday....and may catch the final curtain call...so this was a treat.
Arielle and Gracie
My favorite photo of the day
In other drama happenings this week....Jared has been heading up a PYOC (youth) human video team. They will be putting on their presentation at the base's Good Friday service. They've also been asked to preform at a local church on Saturday. Jared assures me that someone will take a video so I can watch when I get home. I plan to go to the practice tomorrow and watch for myself. LOL

Mike will touch down in nine hours. I know he'll be exhausted and I know I have a zillion things to do to get ready to leave on Tuesday...but I'm really looking forward to seeing him again - for whatever amount of time we have.

Stacia said this a.m. "I knew he'd come back to his daughter." ::snort:: A little later she came and told me, "They go and they come back and they go and they come back." That seems to sum up her growing up as the youngest in a house full of young adults and a deploying daddy.

Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...
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Windy....

We had WIND today....not a little...a lot. Honest. I have no clue how fast the gusts were...but it was windy enough to wake us up with roaring and crashing.....and it was strong enough to do all this.....






Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...
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Friday, March 19, 2010

America? What's up?

We need reform....I'm not sure we need the shenanigans I've been watching online.....I thought this simplifies the path of the health care bill.... I realize I'm over here and not watching American news....maybe I've misunderstood something, but I'm concerned when a bill is passed that the congress hasn't had time to debate and submit.....again....maybe I'm missing the finer points of what is going on.
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Aviation Part 4 -

This one really cracks me up!
video

Spinning Room
video

There are more...but this gives you a taste of the fun to be had at this particular museum. It's after 10 p.m. I'm trying VERY hard to go to bed at a decent hour (as I wake up at 5:00 - 5:30 a.m. regardless). I am doing my best to take care of myself, build my immune system, you know....."deployment strong". I've done this deployment thing enough to know that if I don't watch myself I'll stay up until 2 a.m. and try to live on 3 hours of sleep - turning me into a very grumpy Mommy.
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Aviation - Part 3 -

This was fun to watch.......different ones attempt.....
video
video
Funniest yet....
video


Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Aviation - Part 2

Jared won my heart by helping his sister out on this ride. She had run over to get in line, not realizing that a group from school were there. She stayed in line, but was getting intimidated by the group, the chattering she couldn't understand and all the attention directed at her. The children were so cute. They had a great time trying out their English. I had Stacia try out a Japanese phrase and when all laughed it nearly put her over the top. I'm fairly sure they were simply thrilled she was trying a Japanese phrase...but she thought they were laughing at her.





Finally, they got to ride.....
video


Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Aviation Wonderland

We LOVE to visit the Misawa Aviation Museum.  It is FUN.  We went on Nate's last day here. He enjoyed it too. I've showed tons of photos before.....this time I'll try some video clips to give you a feel for the place. It is FREE for kids under 10th grade. Only Y300 yen for 10 - 12th graders and Y500 for adults.

Stacia compares her speed with various animals
video

Flight simulators - several kinds
video

Learning about "gravity" and the moon
video

Let's see if these have loaded before I add any more. LOL

Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Parenting Workshop

Working on gathering my scattered thoughts for next week's Parenting workshops.What do I know from parenting????

What is the one thing you've heard me say or seen me do that you think I should remember to communicate?

What is your single best piece of advice - single? I have so many ideas swirling...but God has said, "Give them a vision for parenting." I hope to offer some practical tips, but GRACE and a vision for how valuable God considers parenting. What an honor to partner with Him in raising a generation.

What books or resources have blessed you?  I have my own list and am creating a handout....but maybe I've missed something great.

I've honestly been too busy searching the Word for our family and children, raising my children, to really come up with "steps to parenting" or what not. LOL  However, I find I have a lot of random "D's mottoes" that I live by and many of them have to do with parenting....they are just so scattered. I need an outline. LOL

I finished my thoughts on Intimacy for Wed a.m.
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Happy Drug

This drugstore brings a smile to my face every time we drive by it.....I promised the kids I'd get a photo of it.

Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Terrific Tuesday

We continued our sight seeing today with Uncle Nate. We headed for one of our favorites. Tonami Clan Memorial. I really need to find some English books on this...or take Akiko with us next time. We have questions.



 Last time we visited all was covered in thick snow.



I keep trying to find Grape/Aloe Vera for the kids to try....so many choices....

Or not.... ::snort::

This is our favorite little restaurant. The kids ate until they were nearly sick, much to the delight of the owners....this shop reminds us of Po and Kung Fu Panda.

Stacia is going to miss Uncle Nate.
After lunch, Arielle had drama. The rest of us met up with Twyla and Joey and headed to the Food Court for a treat...enough said.  We made our way home, played outside, watched an episode of Dick Van Dyke show and Hogan's Heroes.....youngers are in bed....Nate and Jared are watching Amazing Grace....I think I'm heading for bed. I need to wake up and spend early a.m. hours on messages for next week.....In between our excursions, I updated FB and email....and tried to get a bit of PWOC business done....."big rocks first.....do the next thing..."

Mike should be driving to OR/CA as I type.....

*Here's a bit more info on the Tonami Clan....Visit here for hours and such. We can't wait to visit when everything is up and running.....
In 1872, Yasuto Hirosawa, a samurai warrior of the former Aizu Clan(late Tonami Clan), came to the area, cultivated it, and established the first western-style ranch in Japan in the Yachigashira district of Misawa City, which at the time, was a small out-of-the way village. Hirosawa hired two Britons and imported stud horses and bulls from the western world to breed the local Japanese livestock. He made significant contributions to the improvement of the Japan-bred livestock quality, building the foundation of a modern Japanese livestock management, and raising the level of local agricultural production. A museum stands in honor of Hirosawa, displaying valuable literature he wrote, materials and farming equipment used in the old days. Other facilities are; petting zoo, mini-golf, battery-operated car ride, snack stand, etc. Several events are held throughout the year for community participation.
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

Momoishi on Monday

While I was gone the kids have been learning about mollusks and crustaceans. They wanted to visit the beach yesterday to try to find samples. It was cold....certainly not Okinawa....but off we went.


Zander brought the snow shovel so he could dig for clams and such. ::snort::

Nate found samples of shells that had been drilled into by other animals....something about digestion and such. I'll have to read the lesson this weekend.

The find of the day was LIVE barnacles and such.

I'll have to write about sea glass shortly...but here's our find for Monday.....we found lots of sea plastic. Before I went to Okinawa, I would've thought this was a great day of searching.

I found a Walmart bag full at Taguchi beach in Okinawa...but that's o.k.
The vase I had hoped to fill with sea glass by the time we moved is now filled. I will continue to collect sea glass....and search for floats.....that's still on my list.
Choosing Joy!
©2010 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...