Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Better than DVDs!

Kylie is allowed to watch a DVD every morning if she wants to - for 30 min.
This morning she wasn't interested.
Instead, she was glued in front of our laptop, watching the revival that has broken out in Floriday, USA, through the webcast of GOD TV.
There is a strong sense of God's presence coming through our tiny screen... and incredible healing miracles happening!
Leilani saw Kylie with tears running down her cheeks and asked her why she was crying.
She said, "Cuz God is touching my heart."

Wanna have your heart touched, too, and maybe your body, if you need healing?!
It's happening all over through TV and computer-screens!

Check it out:

We are THRILLED at what God is doing and are getting touched by him, too!

Update on Stephen

I just got some more info on how Stephen is doing.
He arrived in the States on Friday in Washington D.C., and was moved to a hospital near his home base the next day. Carla, his wife, is there now.

He is in incredible pain although he is receiving large amounts of pain killers. He will have another operation tomorrow (Wed) and the day after (Thurs) and many more surgeries after those.

He is very blessed to have survived this terrible blast. His primary concerns are a shattered elbow, shattered ankle and foot on the right, and a shattered leg, ankle and foot on the left. Unbelievably, according to his doctor, he has never seen a patient going through what Stephen went through, without a spinal cord injury.

Thank you for your continued prayers!


We've reached another milestone in the Betts-family: Nathalie got her (restricted) drivers licence!!!! Hurray - go girl, go!!! (but slowly, please)

This means that she can now drive a car by herself (no passengers except for experienced drivers) from 7am to 10pm. In another year, she can then get her full licence.
Congratulations, Nati! Well done!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Please pray for Rich's brother!

This week, Stephen, Rich's youngest brother, was seriously injured in Afghanistan, where he had been with the US Army.
He was targeted by foes who, after a battle, detonated an IED under his Humvee. Stephen sustained serious injuries in both feet, ankles, one leg and one arm.

He has already undergone several surgeries in Afghanistan and in Landstuhl, Germany, where he is at the moment. He will soon be back in the USA for further treatment.
He will have a long path of rehabilitation ahead of him and was told that he would have to be in hospital for at least 4 1/2 months!

Here is an exerpt from an email from Carla, his wife (they have 2 little boys, age 3 and1):

"Please pray for the doctors, and that there will be strength and peace for our entire family, for the duration, that this would bring our entire family closer to God as we see his healing and feel his comfort. I am okay, just waiting, that is hard for me- it has been amazing to see people from our lives come forward and offer any kind of help, and earnestly pray for us- we feel blessed for that support."

It would be wonderful if you could pray for Stephen, Carla and the whole family!!!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Family-Fun on ANZAC Day

Look at this most amazing-looking fish that Rich caught today in the ocean!

God's creativity never ceases to fascinate me!

And YES, we'll eat it, too!

Today was a public Holiday in NZ and about 20 of us went off to a beautiful beach - about a 40min. walk from Waihi Beach (about 1 hr drive from Tauranga).

Louis, Nathalie's boyfriend, got a lobster - or crayfish, as they say here.
He knows how to make Nathalie happy!

Rich, Louis and his father John playing "Petanque"

Holly, Louis's sister with Shayden

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

How cute is that?!

Presenting one of 4 new Betts-family-guinea-pig-members - born just hours before photos were taken.
Kylie is in "heaven" :)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Can you guess...

... what this is???
As I was cleaning up the living room, I discovered one of Kylie's doings and just couldn't resist showing it to you. This is her (actually Leilani's) stuffed dog, lying comfortably on a dish towel in front of the fireplace, wrapped in one of Shayden's blankets. The gate in front is supposed to keep Shayden from getting too close to the fireplace - and in this case - her pet dog:)
Good night, doggy! Sleep tight!

Believe it or not...

... but the cheapest disposable diapers (or nappies, how they call them here) in New Zealand are from Germany!!!

They are factory seconds with minor defects, obviously too good to be sold in Germany, so they ship them to the other end of the world and sell them as the cheapest of the country and probably cheaper than in Germany!

Go figure...

Happy Hubby!

Last night, Rich went fishing - after not having been able to go for weeks - and he got 2 BEAUTIFUL trout. He's so passionate about fishing that he didn't mind the f r e e e e e z i n g cold weather.

Here are the beauties - all three of them (I did a good catch, too, many moons ago!:)) (Hey John, we're waiting for you! Is your mouth watering yet?!)
Yep, folks, summer is gone - sigh - and we had the first fire in our fireplace since last winter this morning, when we woke up at 6am to 15degrees C (59 Fahrenheit) in the house - brrrr.

I've got to admit that I dread winter. I am starting to enjoy the seasons again after having lived in the Tropics for so long. But winter is just not *my* season...

Getting up every morning to a freezing house. Having to make a fire first thing and then waiting for it to warm the living area. Venturing out into the cold and often rain to get more wood - often early morning or late night... Freezing cold in the rest of the house for the rest of the day. Getting into a freezing bed at night - no wait, we're gonna have to get those electric blankets out - they definitely help!
I know I'm a wiiiimp...
In the meantime, I will enjoy every minute of sunshine and warmth - 'cuz it's not winter YET, just fall!!!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Oh, to be 13!!!

This past week has been extremely busy and full, culminating today in Leilani's 13th birthday!!! Go girl!!! We are soooooooo happy you're in our life and family and we love, love, love you! You are an incredible, beautiful young lady with a love for God and for people. You are kind, compassionate, generous, fun- and chocolate-loving, really good with kids and at making brownies... and so much more... but Jeremie wants me to bring him to bed now (that means, tickle his feet while he's going to sleep) and I'd better go - it's becoming rare enough that he asks me these days:).

A few pics of our family birthday brunch, a tradition in our house to mark the occasion (menu as per request by Leilani: coffee-cake, fruit and yoghurt - actually the only thing she requested was the cake):

The girl on the left is Leilani's friend Stephanie, also a half-German - she's celebrated Leilani's birthday with her now for the 4th time in a row - a record for any of our kids!!!

Opening the always-very-special-package from "Mutter" in Germany

Monday, April 7, 2008

My Princess-Motorcyclist

Kylie had a very important discussion with me this morning. She wanted to make sure that I knew exactly what she wants for her birthday. She has recently found out that she is 4 and a half!! So, not much longer until her birthday in August:)!
She wants to get a princess crown and a fairy wand from her Dad, some chewing-gum from Leilani, some really, really cool candy from Nathalie, oops, I forgot what she wanted from Jeremie; and from me - she wants a princess dress, a DVD about Jesus and when he died, and a motorcycle. On the motorcycle, we need to write in pink, "The Princess Motorcycle".

She had me promise her tonight that I was going to write it all down, so I won't forget...:)
So, here we go, promise fulfilled!
I had to force myself to stay serious. It was so funny...! At least she's one that knows exactly what she wants. Not like some who don't know what they want 5 days before their birthday... hint...hint...
She's a character, that's for sure - and I love her!!!
Here she is with Daddy's reading glasses:

Enjoying a bath with Shayden

Saturday, April 5, 2008

The Betts' funny home video

Well, this is the first time I actually managed to upload a short video clip. The picture isn't very good and the camera doesn't have sound, but it's funny - our family's had a few good laughs...

This is a little sharing of our "Kylie-riding-the-bike-without-training-wheels" family experience

By the way, Kylie and Leilani were alright!

Shayden's first time in the ocean!

Since this video-uploading thing seems to be working now, here's another one from about a month ago - Shayden's first ocean-experience. Too bad it's getting colder now...

He absolutely LOVED it!!!

"My" little Maori-boy

Since we've had Shayden with us - almost 9 months now! - I've had the sense that he will become a LOVER and a WARRIOR for God. The Maori people have warrior-hearts. In their traditional war-dance (still practiced quite a bit), the men paint their faces, stick out their tongues and make really scary faces to scare off the enemy (not literally anymore today).

Well, seems that Shayden's practicing already - the tongue part anyways ... :) - go, Shayden!!Enjoying bubbles with Leilani

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Random thoughts...

I never imagined life with teenagers so much FUN! We've got 3 of the species - well, almost - Leilani will be 13 next week, but she's been acting like one for a while. If you're reading this, kids, YOU'RE AWESOME!!!

Things are sure far from perfect in our house, but overall, I'm really enjoying this stage in life! There's never a dull moment and it's fun watching their lives, personalities and giftings unfold.
There was a time where I felt like the worst mother, and I was pretty bad . . . sorry kids :(

I know that I know that I know that if they turn out well, it's in spite of us as parents - - - and by the GRACE of GOD alone!!!

To get back to my teenager-theme: of course - and by now you may get jealous of me - I've got the best of several worlds.
Not only do I have amazing teenagers, but I get to teach 4-yr-old Kylie how to ride a bike without training wheels (actually we almost all had a part in teaching her yesterday and today!) - and the next minute, I get to teach little 1-yr-old Shayden how to walk (he hasn't conquered that one quite yet).


Another random thought that hit me was a memory of our time in Tahiti. At the moment, Jeremie has a couple of wounds that have to be disinfected and covered up.
This brought memories of years of spending 1/2 hour just about every morning and evening treating the kids' wounds... as they were roaming the tropical nature barefoot... we needed to be extra-careful with cuts etc because of infections.
Between that and endlessly trying to get rid of head-lice - what a way to spend our precious time as missionaries :)

Memories - memories :)