Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Finally home!

Just a quick update to let you know that we made it home a few hours ago after traveling for 24 hours! I have so much to write about so I'll hopefully start posting things in the next couple of days. We had such a great time!!!!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Iguazu Falls in Brazil and Argentina!

We are now at Iguazu Falls and it is amazing. It's in the middle of the Amazon and the middle of no where! They upgraded our room and we can see part of the falls out of our window! Lets just say this is the nicest hotel we've ever stayed at! Oh my! Here are a few pictures. Don't worry, once we're home I'll post lots more and tell about everything!

It's pretty chilly here since it's winter and by the falls so they have this fire room and it's wonderful

Enough water flows over the falls in one day to power London for a year

There were complete double rainbows! Here, they are rapping down around the falls. SO pretty!

We walked out on this with ponchos and still got soaked!

How great is our God?!

This hotel is gorgeous

It's so amazing because standing by the falls makes you feel so good. It's chilly here but you can feel the warmth from the energy and you just feel so much better. I LOVE it.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

First day in Niteroi!

These pictures are in backwards order but oh well! Not much to say except that we got here safe and it's beautiful! Here's a million pictures..

beach 2 blocks from our hotel

the beach looks out across the bay to Rio de Janeiro. The Christ statue is on the top of that mountain! See it?

Sugar Loaf mountain on the left

Flying into Rio early Wednesday morning

Leaving OKC Tuesday afternoon!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Leaving on a jet plane

We leave for Brazil tomorrow!! So excited! Today has been a little crazy. It has been flooding everywhere and right outside my neighborhood, the water was 8 feet deep. All day there have been people stranded in the water so there have been helicopters and rescue teams everywhere. Thankfully they have been able to save everyone. Praise God! I'm not sure how much I'll be able to update while I'm gone but I'll try my best! Please pray for our traveling and my health. I hope you have a great couple weeks!!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

When I say I'm a Christian...

When I Say "I Am A Christian" by Carol Wimmer
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I'm not shouting "I am saved"
I'm whispering "I get lost!"
"That is why I chose this way."
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I don't speak of this with pride.
I'm confessing that I stumble
and need someone to be my guide.
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I'm not trying to be strong.
I'm professing that I'm weak
and pray for strength to carry on.
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I'm not bragging of success.
I'm admitting I have failed
and cannot ever pay the debt.
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I'm not claiming to be perfect,
my flaws are too visible
but God believes I'm worth it.
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I still feel the sting of pain
I have my share of heartaches
which is why I seek His name.
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I do not wish to judge.
I have no authority.
I only know I'm loved.
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

Monday, June 7, 2010

Why I love traveling and my greatest fear

I absolutely love traveling. Traveling for fun that is. I may not have told you the reason we are going to Brazil. My dad is the director of missions at our church. Our church supports missionaries all over the world. Part of his job is to go to the mission sites to see and experience the work there and provide encouragement. It's always great for the missionaries to have people from home visit them. My whole family gets to go to support the missionaries and their kids. The elders have found that it's wonderful to send a couple kids from our church to see the missionary kids so that when they come back for furlough, they aren't so overwhelmed and they actually know people. We actually make friends with them and still keep in contact while they are on the mission field!
So that is why we are going to Brazil. It is such a blessing to be able to go all over the world and see how God is using these people!
Out of country trips are my favorite for many reasons. Lots of people don't like it because it's stressful because of culture shock and language barrier.
First of all, I really do like the overnight flights. Yes, I do hate the sleep issue and how long you're stuck in the plane. But I love the whole process of it.
Before I tell you about the whole plane experience, I should tell you my greatest fear while traveling. 2 words. Airplane bathrooms. They scare me to death. Once in a movie someone got locked in one. I've never been the same since. I'm always scared that I'll get sucked down the toilet or something or get stuck in that tiny space. And every time I go to the bathroom there is turbulence which freaks me out even more. I mean the whole bathroom experience is bad enough without having to worry about falling off the toilet during turbulence. I think on our trip to Brazil last time I really did get stuck in the bathroom for 3.7 seconds until I read the signs on how to get out. I can usually avoid the bathroom on short flights but on 8-10 hour flights there is no way to avoid it. Trust me I've tried. I've tried not drinking anything and it doesn't work. I'm doomed.
Okay now on to the fun parts!
You get on a humongous plane with either 2 seats on each side and 3 in the middle or 2 seats on each side and 5 in the middle. They are big planes! I love getting settled in as everyone is taking off their shoes and getting blankets and pillows. Once at the flying altitude they serve you "dinner"! It's more like a midnight snack since they serve it around 12:30 or 1am. After everyone is done eating, they start a movie and turn off the lights. This is the time where you are supposed to go to sleep. Ha good one. Most people can sleep! I usually turn my Ipod on and look out the window. One of the cool things about long flights is that on the screens, they have a map and you can see your plane moving closer to the destination. I love just watching outside as we go across the world.
That is fun for oh a couple hours then it gets a little long! It's a long time to be on a plane! I usually take a lap or two around the plane to stretch my legs and make fun of how people are sleeping. Uhh I mean..I would NEVER make fun of people while they peacefully sleep the whole stinkin way of the flight.
My favorite part of the flight is around 6 am. You start smelling breakfast and the sun starts rising. People are waking up and opening their window shades. The lights still aren't on yet because there are people sleeping but the plane starts to get lighter as the sun comes up. The flight attendants bring around coffee, tea, and juice. There's nothing like coffee while watching the sunrise while flying over the amazon rain forest. Excitement grows as you realize you're getting closer to landing. They bring your breakfast and you order a dr pepper (ok that's probably just me) one last time because they don't have dr pepper in South America. I think the lights are still off, but everyone is fine with that because the beautiful sunrise is providing the perfect amount of light. Finally everyone wakes up and starts getting dressed (not that they weren't wearing clothes before...ha they just put on shoes, maybe brush their teeth, put contacts in).
Once out of the plane, it hits you that you're in a foreign country. You go through customs and all that fun stuff then you are free to roam the country!
I love the adventure of trying to figure out where to go and how to communicate with people. Once we played charades with our waiter at a restaurant because we could not communicate. It was great! Usually we have the missionaries with us to help translate. But one time we were with another family who was there with us and we decided to go eat on our own without a translator. You always have to order your drink with ice since they don't use ice usually and we thought we knew the word for "with ice". We thought we were ordering coke with ice. The waiter looked so proud because he thought he knew what we wanted and we thought he knew what we wanted. Apparently we don't know the word for "with ice" because they brought us these huge glasses of beer. We didn't know how to tell him that we don't drink so when he would leave the table we poured them in the bushes (we were outside). Then we finally got some coke without ice. It was hilarious!!
Another thing about other countries is dodging the water. Brushing your teeth with bottled water is an experience. Don't ever get iced tea. Can you say food poisoning?
The food is different! When you eat in Brazil, it takes several hours and is about fellowship, not just eating. Also, dinner is after 8 or 9. They really have the best food.
Time concept is different. If someone says to be at their house at 6 it means around 8. It's hard to get used to that!
There's so much more I could tell about traveling to foreign countries but I'm sure I'll have many more stories from this trip!
On planes now they have wireless internet!! Of course you have to pay for it but it is worth it for an 8-10 hour flight! So I will be able to update my blog from my Itouch while we are on the plane!
This week is going to be crazy and fun! There's so much to do before we leave next Tuesday!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Random random random

For this post I'm going to tell you random things about myself...
1. I HATE staying up late and sleeping in. I would rather go to bed early and get up early and enjoy the morning! Mornings are my favorite part of the day. But Lyme disease messed this whole thing up by causing me to be nocturnal.
2. I haven't been to school since October 2008. Most of my friends say I'm lucky because I don't have to go, but they don't understand that they are the lucky ones.
3. I have been all over the world for mission work :) I love learning about other cultures and expierencing them.
4. I absolutely love to sing!
5. I have done community musicals all my life
6. I have been surfing in Rio de Janerio, Brazil and Maui, Hawaii
7. I love all foods. Again thanks to Lyme disease I'm a little more picky.
8. I used to play basketball on the church league...ha! I love to ski.
9.. I'm terrified of birds. They have tried to kill me a few times...
10. I feel like I've had to become a nurse the past couple years. I know too much about the medical world
11. My church family means so much to me! They have supported me so much through everything I've been through
12. I really hate being late
13. I got to name my brother when he was born...I was 5
14. I love having friends that I can have deep discussions with about the Bible
15. I'm still amazed everytime I see a sunset, sunrise, the ocean or mountains. I feel closer to God when I see them.
16. During church every Sunday I eat a whole pack of my grandma's mints.
17.. I love having devotionals with a small group of friends
18. I have been to Disney World with my family more times than I can count..
19. I love being in another country, hearing the same songs we sing, in a different language. It amazes me every time to know that we are singing the same song, to the same God, meaning the same thing, just in a different language!
20. Elf is one of my favorite movies and I watch it all year
21. I could live off popcorn
22. I'm addicted to Words With Friends on my itouch. If you play, email me and start a game please!
23. I'm sure in the near future that I will make another list of random things...
well that was fun. We have started to get ready for our trip to Brazil!! We have been to Brazil twice but have never been to Iguazu falls. Today we booked our hotel and here it is....

oh. my. goodness. I'm in love, I'm in love and I don't care who knows it! (thank buddy the Elf for that one) Does this not look amazing?! I can't wait.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

oh how I love summer!

Our pool opened last Friday and it is great! Friday some of my friends came over to swim and we had a great time!! Friday night I got a bad headache and felt really sick. Saturday I slept most of the day and still felt horrible. It must have been from being in the sun all day on Friday. Sunday I got to go to church which is always wonderful! Yesterday I went to get some new clothes for Brazil! We leave 2 weeks from today. I CAN NOT wait!!!! We are starting to get things ready to go for our trip. There is so much to do but I don't mind it since it's a fun trip!
For some reason my medicines still haven't gotten here. They had to make several of my meds at the clinic so it's just taking longer than we thought. I really need to get them and figure out my schedule!
Shelby and I at church Sunday

Tacy, Natalie, my brother, me, and Alex at the pool!

This week I'm doing a liver and gallbladder cleanse. I have so many itchy rashes all over me from my liver problems so I'm so excited to clear things up. Everyday I drink lots of apple juice. Then on Saturday and Sunday I have to take Disodium Phosphate in hot water, olive oil, and grapefruit juice. It says you can only do this once or twice a year because it is so powerful!
Today my brother and I have been at the pool all day! Last summer I couldn't swim because of my PICC line so it's wonderful to be able to have a port and be able to swim!