Kim keeps having an encouraging response to her blog “Napokon Krasne” (After all Beautiful). Most recently she hosted a group of her authors, editors and translators for a staff meeting. Their goal was to plan ahead for the next few months of direction, themes and articles. She has a very capable and active group of team players.
Remember to pray for Kim and her team as they diligently chooses articles that will touch the hearts of their Slovak readers.
It’s 2:00 Wednesday and I just sat down after a long morning disinfecting the house, for the second time since Sunday.
It all started on Friday, when Hampton came home from school telling about the little girl in his class that was vomiting in the class. Remember those days in school?? And what about that awful red stuff they would sprinkle over it?? yikes!) He said he felt sorry for the little girl, and that it was “gross”. By 9:30 pm I was the one feeling sorry for him, because he was throwing up. And he was absolutely right, IT WAS GROSS! Read the rest of this entry »
I worked so hard preparing for this time together. The place, the message, the gifts, everything. In the end, everything was absolutely perfect. Of our 17 writers, 12 were present! 4 were out of the country, only 1 was unable to come and she is a mom of a newborn. Pretty cool! Read the rest of this entry »
I go back and forth, whether I should post here on our blog, update emails I send out personally each week. The email is to a short list of people, each who have personally asked me about specific ways to pray or about personal things going on in our family.
I started writing more responsibly last January and I was pretty faithful all year. Sometimes I feel guilty when I find out about people who want to know more about us (and possibly receive these weekly emails). So today, I’m on the side of posting (of course this is always subject to change 🙂
I have made a new category, here on “Kim’s blog” section of sheppsnsk.org called, “weekly updates”. I’ll post the emails there each week and we’ll see how it goes. If you get the email (via email) it is exactly the same!
This is my life. Today is December 2, (the day after the first Advent Sunday) and here I (Kim) am trying to pull all things together for a meaningful Christmas Season for my family. It seems I’m always a day behind (or a week, or a month). It would be easier at this point to say, “next year; I’ll do something next year” and not stress myself now. But the reality is that next year will probably be exactly the same as this one.
So I have decided, not to wait, but to go for it, and own the philosophy “ better late than never”. Because, I’d rather be a little late starting our Advent countdown, than not do it at all.
and because I’d be more mad at myself for letting the days pass focusing on shopping or getting or something else other than on what we need to celebrate.
I don’t know about you, maybe your getting a late start too with Advent, or maybe you didn’t plan it at all. I would love you join me in “better late than never” and decide to do some purposeful things with your family (or for yourself). I believe you won’t regret it.
And so, late last night, December 1, I sent the kids to the basement for the Christmas decorations, hit play on the Christmas music playlist, and we started unpacking a few things. We didn’t finish, or even get started, really. In fact it looks way worse than when we began. I think about the photos everyone is putting up on Facebook now of Christmas trees and decorations. And I wonder what kind of comments I would get with my photos.
I have to be ok with this, because this is my life and I’m choosing to do it this way. And I certainly can’t let the comparison of Facebook get me down, or keep me from doing what I can for my family.
We ended our night by watching episode 1 of the BBC, the Nativity (I plan to watch one episode each advent Sunday). It was all I could do. Yes, I wanted more, but I have to have peace with this. And it was very good.
For this Advent season, here at napokonkrasne, we would like to write something each week about Advent. A reminder. An expectant waiting. Yes, we are already behind, but we are doing it anyway, because even though we don’t have it all together we believe God still wants to bless us!
And so here is my first Advent post:
We love living in Europe. For our family, the last 12 years have been a blessing. Yes, some of those blessings didn’t always look or feel so wonderful, (like one thinks blessings should feel). However, the reality was always true, it is a blessing.
Having said that, it doesn’t mean there aren’t times that we miss the U.S. We do. In fact, with the holiday season now starting, these are some of the most difficult days to be away from Family. Family. That is the key word. And for my family U.S. happens to be synonymous.
And so we have the blessing of sharing in 2 cultures for Christmas traditions, and picking the best from each! I’m sharing some of those traditions with you today:
medovníčky- I still cannot bake cookies like my Slovak friends, but I can enjoy the ones they give us. Not only are they are beautiful but the concept of baking together and sharing with family and friends, is a beautiful tradition we enjoy and want to continue it with our family.
If I’m honest, I will admit that I really didn’t think it would get this far! Really. Not that I didn’t believe God could do it. But you know, the uncertainty of chasing a dream, questioning, “is it really from God” and all the skepticism that goes along with that kind of thinking. However, I didn’t stop praying. I didn’t stop asking you to pray with me for it. And now it is REALLY HAPPENING!
I (Kim) want to share with you a dream God has given me for Slovakia. Many of you may have already heard about it, but it doesn’t hurt repeating it!
Last year when I was in the hospital for over 3 weeks, I stumbled on and began reading “blogs.” It was really my first experience with this kind of a blog. Until then, I only understood blogs to be like mine: I tell about all the ministry things we are doing here in Slovakia. The audience is people who support us – kind of boring, but purposeful. Read the rest of this entry »
All of this is new to me as a mom. High school. Never mind, that my girl learns in her second language and in a country where I don’t know the system much less the language (at least not well enough to know what to expect).
So all this starts me on this journey with a minus. These last 2 years have been a huge learning curve for me, for us. Starting with the day we went to see a perspective high school last March, and were told it was too late to apply (for the upcoming fall)! This “oversight” delayed her high school a year. Then finding out she must take “monitorovy” tests in addition to entrance exams for individual schools.
Hearing the discouragement in her voice as she recounted opinions her teachers (publicly) expressed of her chances to pass these tests with good marks. Foreigner. Never mind she has lived her 12 years. Seeing her work hard preparing, mostly for herself but also a little to disprove those teachers. Hours of tutoring, hundreds. Trial tests. All the while carrying a full course load.
There isn’t much I can do to help her prepare. I try, but it’s impossibly hard for me to understand anything. I only tell her this foreigner’s mom could not pass a test like this. How this test makes school in the US look ridiculously easy. And if I had to score high enough on the SAT to place in the top 130, I would not have gone to high school. Truth. I wonder if she believes me, or if she thinks I’m just trying to make it better?
Is it enough to say:
This is our life.
God has put us here and we are satisfied.
He is a good God and has good things for you.
He loves you and knows the plans he has for you, plans to prosper you.
It is enough for this 15 year old mom, but what about her?
And that day when she went for the first of tests and I walked the halls and prayed for strength. For remembering all things learned. For His peace and His presence to fill her. That it would be enough for her too. It is all I could do.
And just Maybe this isn’t about her fears, but mine. And calling on God AGAIN to bless this girl. It’s all I could do. It’s all I have. I have no power, no alternate plan, no great idea. Just prayers. And reading HIS words, reminders that He cares. Even about this. And He met ME there and gave ME peace and ME comfort and ME His presence.
And that morning, those hours that passed like minutes, and it was me that was blessed.
After my last post, I decided the next one must be easier, lighter, less deep, less thinking and most definitely less processing. Here we go. . .
Menu planning and grocery shopping is part of my weekly schedule. It can get routine and mundane, and somewhat uneventful, but since I like to cook, it has the potential each week to turn into something fun! When I am at the grocery store, I’m on the prowl, eyes open wide, always sniffing and searching out some new product (or new to me) and for sales! At home, I try to be creative, in the menu having a variety of meats, sides grains, while at the same time making everyone happy (doesn’t always happen). To keep it from getting boring, I made a rule not to have the same thing 2 weeks in a row and I try to have at least one new recipe a week. All of this takes time and planning. To do this, I have a few tricks up my sleeve. Read the rest of this entry »
This post was supposed to be a quick link of Gwyneth’s testimony when we were in the East last week, two weeks ago. Easy, quick, “published”.
Two weeks later, here I am at it again. Revising. It is true what “they say” about how writing things out causes you to think more, process more, and in turn learn more about yourself, about the situation, and for me, about God. This post is proof of that! Now if I can just get it out of my head and sounding right. . . .