Aug 132012
 

To be honest, this picture pretty much sums up all of us at the moment.

When we had the opportunity to head to Tasmania on the weekend to consider some important ways to develop what we’re doing with the ship, we jumped at the chance. In some ways, it seemed crazy. Pack the kids, wake at 4am (okay, 3:30, since Elianna is still on her “own” time in the nights), get to the airport by 5, travel down, keep the kids quiet on planes, keep the kids quiet in the car, keep the kids quiet in meetings, let the kids go crazy in the car since they’ve been up all night, have dinner by 7:30… all the weekend before we are due to fly to America.

Now that we’re back, the washing machine is being temperamental, the kids are overtired, and I have literally been rearranging suitcases instead of unpacking them, I should be kicking myself for going… but I’m not.

Yes, we’re tired, but this trip was amazing… and not just for the glorious views, the chilly temps, the fireplace in our accommodation, or amazing local produce Tassie has to offer… seeing what could be and what we could develop in PNG up close and personal was inspirational and exciting.

Now, its 11pm on Monday night, the washer is going, the house is dirty, half our bags are packed, and we have about half a day to finish it off before we wake up at 4am (or 3:30) again, and we all look a bit like Max (who, for the record, was too tired to even enjoy a ride on a genuine Tasmanian police bike, which I didn’t even know was possible for a two year old boy who adores anything that moves)…

But, we also realise the rare privilege that it is to take our entire family overseas and visit four states. We’re so, so grateful. So look out America, we may arrive looking like stunned mullets and stay that way for a few days, but we sure are excited to see you!

Now, the washing machine is ready to be changed and I’m feeling re-energised to pack another lot of clothes… Sleep, you will be mine, shortly!

Aug 042012
 

We heard some horrible news recently. In the Western Province of PNG, just off the coast of Australia, and one of the locations we visit with our ship, they’ve had major flooding which has affected an estimated 30,000 people.

It was so bad that the few possessions the people there have had are gone. For many, this includes the gardens they planted to harvest their food, and even the clothes off their back. Naked, homeless, and starving, some are there right now, trying to figure out what to do.

When I heard this, it broke my heart. I can’t imagine being in their position, wondering what I could find to feed my babies.

We had some good news though, that our ship might be able to assist. Read the rest of the story at YWAM Ships…

 

Aug 032012
 

We’ve always hoped that our ship would be a catalyst for change, and this month it was so, so good to see it in action far beyond the amazing medical work that we’ve known about for the past three years.

We had our first outreach in Port Moresby with representatives from every sphere of society. Find out what happened when everyone came together.

Jul 072012
 

It was windy and chilly and in some ways not very American at all, but we wanted to celebrate the fourth. For one, we love a good get-together and for two, its important for us to help our kids grow understanding their American culture.

We partnered with a few American friends and had a BBQ down at the beach.

The kind of friends who take the time to make stars out of cheese.

And who don’t mind that the cupcakes are burnt (my oven is broken), as long as they look like cute American flags.

But beyond the celebrations of the beautiful and wonderful nation that is America, we were also delighted to receive Elianna’s citizenship. When Max became an American, we took a fun, but very long and expensive journey to Brisbane so we were so excited that the US Consulate did an outreach to Townsville where we were able to go as a family to finalise the nitty gritty. And we were stoked when her passport arrive only a few days later… all set for our trip to the States coming soon!

Jun 252012
 

The veggies are packed and the van is loaded… we’re off on our first family-of-four-outreach.

Granted, its only two days. But there are 16 hours of driving (that’s presuming it goes well!) in those 16 days… and a lot of work to do.

We’re excited to be meeting with some key stakeholders from our region to hear about their priorities, share what we’re doing and consider how we can work together in what we do. We are so much more effective when we do things together… and its heaps more fun.

And speaking of together and fun, we are so grateful that since our tiny car was too small for such a grand road trip, we have the use of a YWAM vehicle… and also a friend along to help with the kids while Jared and I meet.

Good times about to be had by all in the Aussie Outback…