Friday, March 28, 2008

Hubby back home!!!

It's wonderful having Rich back home - since Wednesday late afternoon!!!! Hence the silence on my blog:)
All is well!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

H A P P Y E A S T E R ! ! !

We've had a fabulous, beautiful, glorious day today - - - how GRATEFUL I am to JESUS for his willing suffering and pain - for my - and our - gain!!! I am SOOOO BLESSED!!!!!!!!!

Everybody's is well again - PRAISE GOD!!!

If you're just starting the day - HAVE A WONDERFUL CELEBRATION OF JESUS' RESURRECTION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

"Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important." C.S. Lewis

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Sick baby

Well, last night was way worse than the night before. Shayden was up crying and in discomfort/pain for 3 hours in the middle of the night...
So much for my "better night"... :)

Found out after an outing to the doctor this morning (which took pretty much all morning, there were heaps of people!) that he's got an ear-infection.
Hmmm, strange...
Both Kylie and Shayden came down with these ear-aches totally out of the blue - no cold, no swimming or cold winds, no nothin'...
If I didn't know better, I'd think that they are contagious :)

Good thing I didn't have any plans for today, so was able to take naps when Shayden did, to recuperate.

I'm no fan of TV and DVDs, but at times like these I'm sure grateful for the library, where we get to borrow DVDs for free, and for their amazing "baby-sitting" capacities. And Kylie sure didn't complain one bit!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Almost all alone...

Well, here I am - just with Kylie and Shayden (both in bed) - all by myself for the next couple of days. It's such a weird feeling...
Rich is in the Cook Islands, Nathalie and Leilani went to a 4-day Easter-camp yesterday. Jeremie has been coming and going, but left with some friends for the next couple of days.
It is SOOO different around here.
I actually kind of like it :) (I probably should say that I don't - as a devoted mother - but I've got to be honest :))
YES, I DO miss everybody that's gone, but am enjoying the slower pace, less noise, mess, dishes, laundry, demands etc.
I like the fact that I can just do what I want to in the evenings and there's not heaps of work left. YAY!
I've been able to have people over just about every day, some of that spontaneously. This is nice and I enjoy it!!!
I can dedicate myself more to Kylie, which she needs.(coloured some eggs today for Easter)

Last night, I decided to sleep in Nathalie's bed, in the hope to get to sleep a little longer in the morning. Shayden wakes up around 5:30am and I am awake at his first little noise. He's usually happy babbling along for at least 15 min or so after he wakes up. So I hoped to be able to sleep until his noises would get loud enough to wake me up :)
Unfortunatly, Kylie got an earache in the night and that robbed some sleep - she ended up wanting me to sleep with her. Oh well, maybe tonight I'll get a really good sleep...

Monday, March 17, 2008

Easter for Kylie

Part of Kylie's prayer tonight:

"Thank you Jesus, that you will die this week and come back and then we'll have easter eggs."

By the way - as if magic happened after my last post about her, since that post, she now allows me to play different games with her! I'm soooo happy!!!! YES!!! No more begging about moms and dads and pets!!! (at least not in a couple of days).

Sunday, March 16, 2008


It's been a while since I blogged about Jeremie. He is doing great - an awesome teenager!!!

Besides school, he is busy with different church-related activities. He helps with the primary children, the 11-12 yr. olds, graphics, mowing the lawn, and, of course, goes to youth group and hangs out with a group of friends in his free time.

He has just come back from a week-end in Rotorua (a town an hour away from here). He went there for a friend's birthday - and had so much fun!

The 3 of them went hunting two nights in a row and terminated the life of close to 50 animals that are pests here - mostly rabbits, some opposums and a few wallabies (I didn't even know until today that we had those in NZ - like small kangoroos).

Yep, that's our "wild-at-heart-nature-boy" - LOVIN' it!!!

Jeremie is blessed with some really nice friendships. Besides the hunting-friend, he regularly gets asked to go jet-skiing with another one of his friends (heaps of fun "flying" in the waves). Last week-end, he got to ride Louis' motorbike at the - pretty much empty - beach!

Louis and his brother also have a boat and a group of them (of course including Nathalie) have been going out with that, having heaps of fun - and surfing!

He really couldn't be more blessed! (at least that's what I think... right, Jeremie?)

He now finally has the right (with his type of visa) to work up to 20hours a week and will start working in the kiwi fruit harvest soon - finished all the fun and games - - -

He really wants to earn money to get his own car, but has decided that he will go on a missions-trip with his school in July - to Samoa! So I guess the car will have to wait some more, cuz the trip is costly...

It's pretty exciting: he and about 10-15 others will go to Samoa for 2 weeks to minister. One of the things they'll be doing is teaching special needs kids woodwork skills.
Jeremie LOVES woodwork - and he's got a natural teaching-gift.
And of course, going back to the islands THRILLS him!!! Life in Samoa is similar to Tahiti!!! YAY!!! Should be a "funtastic" experience!

By the way, Rich has arrived safely in the HOT Cook Islands and has already made us jealous by telling us he had a raw fish salad!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Kylie's game

This morning, Leilani heard Kylie saying to herself, as she was getting ready for kindergarten: "I need some attention. I really need some attention."

Kylie is pretty good at knowing when her love-cup is empty - and she asks to get it filled. Fair enough! So this afternoon, I decided to be her emotional "gas station" :)

What a test! I DEARLY LOVE Kylie and I enjoy spending time with her, but for the last I don't know how many weeks, the only thing she wants to do with both Rich and myself is play the same game over and over and over again...

"Can we play Mom and Dad and pet shop? Pleeeeeeeeaaaaaaasse?"

We try to propose all kinds of other activities, but to no avail!

This is how it goes: she's a pet at the pet shop (sitting on the couch) and we have to come and buy her, bring her home etc etc etc... Or vice versa,

At first, it was a cool game/role play, but Rich and I are getting quite tired of it...

When Rich came home and I told him what I'd been doing most of the afternoon, he had that look on his face that made us both laugh and said, "This is parent-abuse. It's getting too much." Haha!!!

Gotta love them kids! I guess the perfect way to extend that patience/dying to self-capacity :)

Guess who...

... had a birthday yesterday????

Yep, you guessed it!
My biggest wish for my birthday was not to have to do any housework all day and to be able to spend some quality time with my favorite people -
  • with God - had some time in the Prayer Room! YAY!!!
  • with my friend Ruth, that I've hardly had any time with in the past year due to being so busy - we went out to lunch - Yumm!
  • with my kids - over breakfast and dinner!!! Thank you Leilani for an awesome cake!
  • with my hubby, in the evening, in the hot pool about 10 min. from our house! Wonderfully relaxing!!

We have this tradition in our house to have the breakfast table nicely decorated for birthdays. Most years, this doesn't happen when it's my birthday - last year, the kids complained about it - so guess, what? Rich and Leilani stayed up really LATE to decorate the place for me with balloons, flowers and we had a beautiful breakfast - fruit salad with yoghurt, cantelope and a cake.

How nice!!! I didn't want them to do all this work - I just like doing it for them - but it was nice!

Thank you, Rich, for all your labour of love for me!!!

It's a privilege that he could take most of the day off to take over my duties and free me up for some of the fun stuff! And NO work! :)

Tomorrow he'll be off again for 12 days...

A little about Rich's time in Brisbane

A little quotation that Rich came back with from his time in Australia:

"Westerners have WATCHES - Non-Westerners have TIME."

I had to laugh at that - it's pretty accurate :)

A lot of conflict that happens relationally on the mission-field has to do with the cultural differences between the so-called "hot-climate-people" and "cold-climate-people".
So there was some teaching during the conference last week to bring greater understanding.

It is encouraging to see that in all the different islands, the YWAM-leaders are locals or from another island! They are doing a good job under many times very difficult circumstances.
Rich LOVES the relational side of these conferences and can relate very well to what people are experiencing and be a great encouragement to them. He also spent a lot of time translating for those from New Caledonia and it was nice for them to have a french-speaking leader there for them!
What he doesn't like so much, is the meeting side of things - hours upon hours upon hours.
During the whole week, he only took a couple of walks and got outdoors a couple of times, the rest were meetings... Oh well, I guess you've got to make the time count - it's quite a sacrifice for everybody to even make it there in the first place.

One sad story from YWAM in Papua New Guinea:
Our workers there serve in the midst of great challenges - continual danger from tribal wars - it's very primitive there.
The (former) leader, his 7-month pregnant wife and their little son had just left YWAM recently to go to Bible School. On their way there, while they stayed with family, the hut they stayed in burned down one night while they were sleeping - and all 4 of them died.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Kylie and her guinea-pig

Those of you faithful readers of my blog (all 3 of you) will remember that about a year ago, Kylie started asking God very seriously for a baby and a guinea-pig. The baby you've seen, and here's a photo of her with her second guinea-pig. She now has Toby and Rosebud, and is hoping for some guinea pig babies...
She is VERY motherly and caring - sometimes too much so... :)
She's still learning to give out her affection in the right dose.

Can you tell I'm in love with this boy?!

little rascal!

Shayden's first "drawing"

Proud driver of a little car that was given to him for Christmas

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

the other photos...

Computer is working again! Here are the other photos:

Look only if you promise not to get jealous :)

Wouldn't want to make you stumble:)
Especially you in Europe (and some places in North America) - I know, I know, I know we are so blessed here in NZ - with beaches like that!
So - when are you gonna come and visit us?! Make sure it's before winter sets in :)

We went to the beach on Sunday afternoon - with Louis' family (sorry, no photo of him yet) - and had some wonderful fun. I haven't been in the water yet all summer beyond my knees... shame on me. Hopefully I'll have a chance before it gets too cold again. And I think Shayden may be ready for a full-on swim by now, too!

Yummy sand! Good for the digestion, too!

Aren't they good looking - these two men?!!

I had a few more pics I was going to post - - - but there's a problem with the computer and I can't do it. Maybe tomorrow.

Monday, March 10, 2008

R E L I E V E D ! ! !

You can shout with us!!! YAY!!!

After Rich came back home late Saturday night, we came to the decision that we were not going to accept the landlords' request for us show the house to prospective buyers. As much as we would like to accomodate their desire to sell the house, we just didn't feel right to put ourselves into such a stressful situation and insisted (nicely) on our rights as tenants.

We knew that they could legally take the house back if they gave us 42 days' notice (no reasons other than that they want to sell it unoccupied or occupy it themselves). But it seems that they don't want to "throw us out" - - - ouff!!!

We are so very relieved!!!! If you have prayed - THANK YOU VERY VERY MUCH!!!

So far so good - hopefully they won't change their mind (we just talked to the wife...).

It's really nice to have Rich back home, even if it's just for a few short days. We're trying to make the most of it before he takes off to the Cook Islands on Saturday.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

What a day!

The fascinating challenges of today:

Another visit to the dentist due to pain after the surgery -
Kylie and Shayden with the stomach-flu (not a severe case, thank God!) -
and then - - - the BOMB:

We received a letter from the owners of our rental home.
They want to sell it (need the money) - and want to start listing it in 2 weeks!
We moved in exactly a year ago next week. They had originally promised us the house for 1-2 years - even recently confirming that it'll be 2 years.

For our inconvenience of having the house clean and presentable at any given day for an agent to come by with a prospective buyer, plus Sunday mornings "Open Home", they offer us a reduction of rent, plus a compensation if/when the house does get sold.

It hit me quite hard, I've got to admit.
My life is already maxed out with busy-ness that I really can't put up with the possibility of an "any-time-somebody-looking-at-the-house" kind of situation. As it is, I barely have enough time to dedicate myself enough to Leilani's schooling.
Plus, if it does get sold, which is a good possibility, we'd have to move out within 6 weeks.
Where to???

If we refuse the offer they made us, it may mean an ugly scene with them - - -
They cannot legally force us to accept their offer.
If we refuse, they could likely decide to take the house back for themselves, in which case they just need to give us 6 weeks notice - - -

To find another rental in such short notice is extremely hard - especially since we have a dog and want to stay in the area, so that Kylie can keep going to her kindergarten (which, at the moment, is walking distance).
It is also very very time-consuming to find another home. Let alone MOVE!

So - either way ain't easy...

If you want to, would you please pray for us? For peace, for wisdom to make the right decision, and for a more permanent home for us (and if it's just a tent, I was thinking today, as long as we can stay a long time!)

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Forgot one thing...

... I like to do in the evenings: write on my blog - duh -
Guess what we did on Sunday afternoon?

Isn't he adorable?!!!!

Evening activities

Ever wonder what I like to do once my day's work is done? (Yeah, I'm sure!)
Some days that can be as late as 10pm - like last night, when I had to bring the 2 littlies to bed, do the dishes, tidy up the house, vacuum and mop the floor - and some days as early as 7:30pm - like tonight, when Jeremie will take care of the dishes and the house is not in a big mess, no hubby to talk to, the 3 older ones in front of the DVDplayer, no meeting to go to.
  • Well, one of my favorite things to do on an evening like tonight, is to read blogs - - - believe it or not! I have just recently come across a whole heap of blogs about adoption, and those are the ones I read. Although I have never met any of those ladies (and probably never will), I feel like I am starting to know them, and am definitely getting inspired by them and want to follow their stories!
One of them had a post recently that really struck a cord in me. Here is an excerpt of it (the parts that concerned me):

You know you are an adoptive mother (or you should be!) if:

1. The fact that there are 143 million children without a parent to kiss them goodnight has ever made you lose sleep.

4. The fact that if 7% of Christians adopted 1 child, there would be no orphans in the world is convicting to you.

5. You spend free time surfing blogs about families who have experienced the blessing of adoption.

10. You believe God's heart is for adoption.

11. You realize that welcoming a child into your heart and family is one of the most important legacies you could ever leave on this earth.

12. You shudder when people say your child is so lucky that you adopted them, knowing full well you are the blessed one to have them in your life.

15. You know full well that the journey of your child coming into your family is one of the most wonderful, miraculous things that has ever happened to you.

More on that subject another time :)
  • Another thing I like doing in the evening is downloading photos of my darlings and writing Shayden's diary (doing an entrance every day Mo-Fri).
  • Then, of course, (this is usually the first thing), reading my emails and - sometimes - responding to them :)
  • Talking to my Mom on the phone - or to another family member or friend
  • Listening to God TV via the internet - usually the Prayer Room in Kansas City

Monday, March 3, 2008

A bit of a sad day

Rich left this morning. He'll be in Brisbane, Australia, for a YWAM-Leaders-Conference from Melanesia (Fiji, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Solomons). As much as he travels, and as much as I let him go joyfully, it is still always sad when he leaves. Good thing he'll be back late Saturday night!

I also had to say "good-bye" to a tooth today. We saw it coming, were supposed to "cap" it a long time ago, just wasn't in the budget. So there it went - - - ouch!
At least it's not in a very visible place and its absence won't bother me much, but I still felt a bit of grief - loosing my first (and hopefully last!) permanent tooth...

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Amazing story-telling at the Betts'

When Rich is at home, Kylie gets pretty spoiled with elaborate good-night stories (most nights, anyways). Rich has got an incredible gift of creativity and makes up the most amazing stories for her - sometimes taking up to half an hour!

Tonight, he even got some photos - and a video-clip - off the internet, to help illustrate his story. I don't know any details, just that a seahorse giving birth to babies (video) and the most amazing nutibrancks (spelling?) were part of it!
Rich is a nature- and animal-lover and that's what comes out when he brings Kylie to bed.

We have friends where the dad does math with his children when he brings them to bed. So the 6-year-old can easily tell you what 65 minus 11 is and the older ones are math whizzes ... :)

I guess it's your passion that you're gonna pass on to your children - - -

Sorry Kylie, Dad will only be home 10 days in March - leaving the day after tomorrow :(
You'll have to put up with a few short minutes of my time, probably reading the Bible - or some story from a library book. I'm good at reading :) - and don't have much time, since Shayden has to be taken to bed at the same time.