Sunday, May 23, 2010


So, I'm taking a few quick moments to do what I said I'm never good at doing - updating you in the moment, rather than a week or two later! You can thank my lesson plans for waiting patiently while I do this instead of writing them. :)

Really though, I had some great pics from yesterday that I just had to show you. I had a great time Friday night hanging out with some different people from church at a "youtube" birthday party. :) We basically hung out, ate some yummy cake, and watched everyone's favorite youtube videos. :) Oh, and before that I made a very yummy spaghetti-meat sauce all by myself that I was super proud of. :)

Yesterday was filled with lots of fun too. I met up with Michelle in the afternoon at one of our favorite outdoor eating spots up by the Castle where we ran into some other good friends who were there. We ended up staying there for a couple of hours before heading down the hill to stroll across the Bridge. It was just such a (rare and) nice day we had to take advantage of it.

We also stopped on our way to grab a McFlurry from McDonalds (it was the first I've had since being over here, and for some reason couldn't resist the craving!). After that I then came home and had a quick bite to eat before two other girls from church came over for a movie night/hang out. Also a great time together. We had a relaxing morning and breakfast and are about to head out to do some work (lesson plans!) at a cafe before church.

Tonight Michelle is coming over to help finish the yummy spaghetti left overs and then we'll finish up the evening with either a showing of the Czech national hockey game on the big screen in Old Town Square, or strawberry-rhubarb pie at our friend Barb's house. Or both. Probably both. :) It's days/weekends like these that I just have to stop and say, yep, this is my life right now. Thank you Jesus, for such an amazing opportunity!!

BUT the best part of it all was in the morning when I got to go Dominik's football (soccer) game! He is the 7 yr. old boy I tutor, along with his whole family (who I gave the Bibles to). I asked when and where he played his games and his parents said he would be thrilled if I came to watch. It was so fun! Not only was it fun to watch (their team is basically training for the national team, I think - seriously, very good and only 7 yrs. old!) it was fun getting to spend time with the family outside of the tutoring hours. I got some great pictures too, and I'm so excited for you to finally "meet" them! :) So here you go.

Dominik is second from the left and #5 on the field

His little sister Linda is 4 years old

I love them! :)

And I'll have some of the rest of the family (mom, dad, and baby Vivien) hopefully later. :)

Anyway, that's all for now! Hope you enjoyed and have a great start to your week! Love you all!!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

A little bit of everything

"Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful." Colossians 4:10

As I've mentioned before, we're going through the book of Colossians in my women's Bible study that meets at our house on Wednesday nights. This is the first verse of the next section (so we haven't spent time on it yet) but it's been something that I've been thinking about a lot the past few months. Prayer. Really, the thing I've been thinking is that I really want to spend more time learning about it. It's something the Bible talks about a lot - it's something that we're told holds a lot (understatement) of power. It's something we're supposed to devote ourselves to and do continually. It's something we ask for and make promises about everyday - "Pray for my brother, pray for good weather..." and "I'll be praying for you!" But what does that look like in my daily schedule and how important/effective do I really believe it to be? Is it something my life is devoted to? I know there are tons of good resources out there talking about this, and the better understanding I have it, the better I will be able to do it. So, all of that to say it's one thing I'm looking forward to spending time with in the upcoming months.

I also want to start thinking about some good processing questions and such, as my time here is coming to a close. Reflecting is not something that necessarily comes easily for me - I never feel like I have a quick answer for those "thoughtful" questions that people always ask. I do know it is a good thing though, not just to satisfy the interests of others :) but for myself to have an understanding of what the past 10 months or so have meant to me and for me. So, I'll be working on that and letting you know how it goes. :) Also, if you have any "good" processing questions feel free to send them my way...

So, to catch you up on the weekend (I just never seem to have the chance to let you in on things as they are happening) I attended my very first "ball." :) The best way I can think to describe it though is really just a really fun wedding reception. It's a fun name to call it though. :) Every year the high schools in the city have a "ball" very much like a prom, only it's just as much for the parents and teachers as it is for the seniors. Many businesses have one as well - Czechs just like dressing up and having a good time I guess! And for the past three years or so, our elementary school has done one for their "graduating" nineth graders as well. So Michelle and I, along with Lucie, my assistant and her husband got all dolled up and danced the night away. It really was so much fun - with all the parents and teachers out on the dance floor having a great time. It was at one of the fanciest/most famous hotels in the city. They had a live band and played mostly English songs, including songs from "Mama Mia" and "Grease" :) It's also a big tradition for everyone to take dance lessons while they're in high school, so it was fun just to watch too (during the slow songs :) But yea, it was just a really great time hanging out with everyone. You can see more pics from the evening here:

Lucie, me and Michelle

And after a late night at the ball, Michelle and I got up bright and early on Saturday to go a neighborhood garage sale in the "American Village!" :) It's a part of Prague designed to look and feel like an American suburb - and they do a pretty good/creepy job. :) This was another thing Lucie wanted to make sure we got to see. It was a great time hanging out with her and her adorable family!

Gideon, Dominik and Destiny

Destiny and Abby

After the garage sale we came back home and took a two hour nap, and then I went to visit Jess, who had hurt her foot earlier in the week and was stuck in her house for a couple of days. We played some Phase 10 and then ventured out for a live concert in the city.

Sunday I had coffee with Betsy, another good friend I've met here and taught Sunday school in church.

Monday morning I helped get Talitha off to the airport for her three week holiday to Turkey and Greece. I've got the place to myself which is nice so far :), but I have some girls coming over Saturday for dinner and a movie which will be good.

Tuesday evening I had dinner with our worship pastor and his wife and two young kids - it was so nice hanging out with them and getting to know them better!

And in between all of that I've been teaching my classes, cleaning the flat (it gets dirty so easily, especially when we're busy!) and catching up with lesson plans and emails. Never a dull moment, that's for sure!

I have had a little bit of a break this week, since two of my classes were cancelled do to the kids being off on their "week in nature." This is something each classes does (all over Czech, I think) when they go off for a week with their class and have basically a second spring break/week of summer camp. It's a pretty sweet deal if you ask me. So today I only have my afternoon class of 1st graders and then tutoring with Dominik. That has still been going well too! I think I'm going to go to one of Dominik's soccer games this Saturday so that will be really fun! It will be nice to just spend more time with his family. Now if the weather would get back to normal it would be perfect - cold, cloudy and rainy (which it has been for basically the whole month of May) doesn't do much to motivate you to get out of the house or go to a soccer game!

Anyway, I think that's the main news for the week. :) Have a good rest of your week!!

Friday, May 7, 2010


Hi Everyone!

I hope this blog post finds you well. :) It's been a good past few days, and I've got some new pictures up to prove it...

Like I mentioned before, my friend Emily came to visit me for a few days! This time away from home has definitely shown me that I have some of the the best friends a girl could ask for, and I have been so blessed to have so many people come to see me while I've been gone! (I know part of it is the fact that I'm in EUROPE, but I like to think they wouldn't have necessarily come it if I wasn't included :) I also know there are many more of you whose hearts are here with me, even if your bank accounts are not. :)

I took some time off of school and spent some quality time walking around the city. We also took a day trip to Karlovy Vary, a spa town about 2 hours north west of Prague, close to the German border. It was a quaint little place with lots of pretty buildings, a river running through the middle, and lots of natural hot springs with fountains to drink out of. The water temperatures ranged from warm to really really hot, and all of them tasted pretty nasty. :) Anything for one's health, I guess... We almost missed our bus home, but after running at full speed once we realized/saw where the stop was, we climbed on board and relaxed the rest of the way home.

Classes and tutoring are going well. It's hard to believe the end of the school year is almost here! I also just realized (as I am writing this) that this is my first year completing it as a TEACHER rather than a STUDENT... crazy. I guess teaching over here has often felt like another one of my practicums in college, maybe because of the different schedule that I have, including private tutoring, etc. But in reality, I really am a "first-year" teacher, and that first year is almost at it's end...

That also means my time here is quickly closing. I'm not really letting myself think about that yet though - both because I will get too excited to come home and homesick because it's still a ways away, but also because I will get too sad, thinking about saying goodbye to the beautiful city and good friends I've made here! Everything in it's own time...

This past Thursday I gave a Veggie Tales DVD (in English) as well as both an English and Czech Bible to the family that I tutor. I wanted to say thank you to them for inviting me into their home each week, and teaching me things about the Czech Republic. I've enjoyed my time with them so much! I also thought this would be a great way for them to practice their English, and simply give them the opportunity to read something that I'm pretty sure they've never read before. You can pray with me that God will speak to them through His Word and reveal His love to them in ways they've never experienced before! And also that He will continue to use these last few weeks that I have with them, to show them more of His love.

Anyway, that's all for now. Have a wonderful rest of your week!!

P.S. And here's the link to some more pictures: