Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Feels a little crazy...

When Rich bugged me several times a few months ago to sign up for hosting a Japanese girl this summer for 2 weeks, I was kind of surprised. He doesn't always want to even stop and talk to his own friends at church, much less hold a conversation with a young, female, complete stranger from another country who speaks very little English. But he thought it would be a really good experience for our family and I agreed. I think I had a more realistic view of the challenges it would bring, but I'm good with a challenge...

Well, she's here and it's a little strange! As we were waiting for our name to be called last night to meet our student, I felt really nervous! I'm sure she was much more so, though. I watched some girls cry as they were united with the first time with their American "family". So sweet! Our student is very shy. I'm sure knowing very little English has a little something to do with that, though! I bet if you stuck me in a Japanese family who spoke no English for two weeks, I'd become shy pretty quickly. The walk to her dorm to get her luggage was awkward. So was the car ride home. And dinner. And our outing to the grocery store to let her pick out some food.

I had to show her how to work our shower and bath tub. And I somehow explained to her that the tower fan in her room is a little broken and you have to just unplug it to turn it off. I forgot to show her how to pull the covers back and sleep under the sheets. It's the middle of the night right now and I'm wondering if she figured it out! At dinner, Allie asked if she was ever going to change her clothes. I have no idea if she understood her or not!

Our home can get a little crazy at times. I've explained a number of times to my sweet little angels that they better behave - or else!!! I'm excited, but very apprehensive as to how these 2 weeks are going to go. She will have classes and field trips every day from the Willamette University campus, so she just spends her nights and weekends with us. We have a few things in mind to do with her, but I would LOVE to hear any ideas from the peanut gallery!!! Please share :)

Friday, July 8, 2011

summertime porch

Something that makes me SO happy is hanging baskets of petunias in the summer. I never feel like I can spend the money on those huge baskets already full and beautiful, but I always want them! For a few years I made my own in the spring and that was fun, but I almost spent the same amount of money making those as I would just buying a couple from a nursery. Well, this year I didn't think I could spend anything. But a few months ago I bought a few flowers for the large pot I already had that's in the bottom right corner. The next month I bought fabric for some pillows on the swing. I think I also bought a cute sign to replace the chipping "Welcome" sign I had by my door for $5. Then the next month I came across a wilting pot of petunias at Walmart that was on clearance. So I took a chance and bought it, then cut it down the middle and put it in the two hanging baskets I already had. We've had the clematis for several years, but it's never looked this good. Rich has been training it up the porch pillar and I just love it!

You can't see the sign very well, due to the morning sun's glare, but it says "Bless this nest". It's bright blue with pink and yellow and orange and a cute little bird on it. I'm pretty sure I spent around $30 on the whole porch. I'd say, considering one decent basket is at least $20 anywhere you go, that I did pretty well! I absolutely love coming home and seeing my flowering porch!

Friday, July 1, 2011

yep, it's been that long

Eleven years, Babe!

It truly hasn't been easy! Marriage is wonderful - wonderfully HARD! But only at times :) Other times it is so wonderfully wonderful that I just can't imagine life without Rich by my side. I know I am enormously blessed to share my life with a guy who patiently loves me and is devoted to God and his family. Man, these days I know that's getting harder to find. He makes me laugh so much and always has time for a hug. I love you so much, Richie!!!