Monday, January 25, 2016

I'm Back

I didn't make any big announcements about it but for the last two weeks I have been in the States on a brief furlough. Because my visit was so short I decided to keep it on the down low and focus on trying to see family.

Visiting my grandmother and grandfather.
I was able to celebrate Christmas with my family and spend a week with my nephew (who just turned 1) and sister-in-law.
Dinner with some of my family.
I also did some "housekeeping" type things like going to the dentist and taking a continuing education class.
My nephew reading his Romanian children's Bible that I got him for his birthday.
It was truly a blessing to be able to go back to the States for a visit. Typically we have to wait a whole year before we get any furlough but, because I came in July and the summer is our busiest time of year, I probably wouldn't have gotten to come home for almost 18 months. Thankfully I have a very understanding boss who allowed me to have a short little visit with my family.
My mom, me, and my aunt Becky at the University of Georgia gymnastics meet in Athens, GA.
I arrived back here in Romania earlier today and have been unpacking and trying to get my body adjusted back to this time zone. I took a nap earlier today which typically would be a big no-no but I kept it short and during a time when I would normally nap anyways.
Lounging with my parents' dog, Luke. I miss having a pet!
Tomorrow I jump into planning for play therapy sessions and helping with Character Classes and Youth Group again!
Me and my dad at the College Football Hall of Fame.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

This is my life now...

I have come to accept the fact that winter looks a lot different for me now than it did when I was living in the States.
This was the weather report from Sunday here in Romania.
While it's been in the 10's and 20's (Fahrenheit) all week here in Romania, it's been in the 40's and 50's in Georgia. It's making packing for a two week visit rather hard.

Also, just because there is snow on the ground doesn't mean that I get a day off. Instead, we shovel a path out to the car, dig out the trusty old Opal (a type of car made here in Europe), and pray that we don't hit a patch of ice on the way to the orphanage. So far, so good.
A serene picture of the front corner of our house. There is actually a driveway under there somewhere and you can see how deep the snow is on the steps and around the landing where Talitha cleared it. We had about 5-6 inches total.
One thing I haven't gotten used to (and may never) is the kids thinking it is great fun to throw handfuls of snow in your face. They are quick and quiet with their attacks and don't seem to understand why having freezing cold, dirty snow melting all over your face, hair, and clothes isn't a great idea.

Having a true winter is going to take some getting used to for this Southern girl but at least I have a good radiator in my room, lots of warm blankets, snow boots, and wool socks.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Bring on 2016!

So, I realize that for the entire month of December I was MIA from my blog. I don't know what to say except that December was this weird vortex of craziness that I may never emerge from...but I mean that in a good way.
My girl Denisa and I.
A lot went down in December...I finished my language lessons, I learned to drive standard, I moved 1.5 times (it's kind of hard to explain...), I helped deliver a lot of Christmas presents, I taught Youth Group in Romanian, I celebrated Christmas...and that's just the quick and dirty summary. I suggest we just start anew with January and I'll try to be a better blogger.
Love to see Daniel in a happy, none-tantrum-throwing mood.
Right now I'm in a really good head space. I love my job. I love Romania. I love the kids. I'm excited about 2016. This will be the year I finally get down to my ideal weight (and stay there), find love, blog more, and learn to enjoy cleaning house (ok, so my goals are a little lofty...maybe really lofty...). Ok, so if none of those things happen I'll still be fine. But seriously, I've felt really good the last few weeks even though I have been insanely busy. Actually insane doesn't begin to cover it but that's the best word I could come up with for the moment (this is what lack a lack of sufficient, quality sleep will do to a person).
Robi looking quite grown up with his Christmas presents.
Right now we are in the midst of hosting our Holiday Team. We've done some orphanage visits, handed out some gifts, and today we had a little "spectacol" ("show") where the kids danced and did skits. I was in my happy place this afternoon riding in the back of the van with some of the girls from the orphanage piled on top of me, holding my hands, and napping on my shoulder. I've had some awesome moments of just holding kids in my arms lately and there's nothing I love more than just snuggling with a kid.
Marian and I.
I hope that your 2016 started with you being in a good head space too. I'm praying that it continues and that this new year holds more kid snuggles and full hearts. And maybe a little more sleep.