Tuesday, August 30, 2011

First Day of School

He'll eat lunch at school today, so we didn't pack a sandwich. Coffee is provided, but he seemed well rested. He ate a good breakfast, brushed his teeth, packed his bag, and then hopped on his bicycle to ride off to school.
I think he's excited, don't you?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Oh, Tooth Fairy...

Can you find your way to Maryland?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Little Update

A fortnight has passed since we made this new home our home, and we are finally beginning to get into a groove.

Before the routine of school becomes the norm, as a family we ventured into the city to visit the National Zoo. Of course, for us small-town folk, the ride on the Metro was excitement itself.

Soon we were deposited at Cleveland Park, walked the half mile to the zoo entrance and enjoyed the variation in both animals and cultures (just in this short time here, we've seen the "melting pot" we used to sing about with Schoolhouse Rock). The zoo outing was fun, if not impressive, and Sunday brought a second chance to worship in the church that we will call ours for this season.
God has blessed new friendships, too. We continue to grow closer to our host family, the Hoffmans, and enjoy meals, swimming, movies and "shoes"often. We've met several PC families at an impromtu cook-out. And, we've spent many lovely hours this week fellowshiping with two different families who are here for the Pastor's College this year. I believe God has much in store for us as we relate with new friends.

And so, though our world has indeed been shaken by change -- new career, new home, new town, new church, new friends -- we serve a God who is faithful to provide stability, to bless us abundantly and to give us rest in His perfect plan for us.

News Flash:

For a little insight into a new experience for the Brown family, check out this link: Quake Hits Near Washington DC.

Interesting that I (Jane Ellen) just went to a seminar last weekend titled "Worshiping God When Your World Is Shaking." I didn't think it was that prophetic! ;-)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

What Emmy does these days...

She colors pictures and writes letters to her friends back home.
She plays Virtual Families.
She plays Chess... against herself.
She rarely takes her sunglasses off.
She knits. And she swims.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow!

Since we've been in Maryland, the Lord has greatly blessed us with an abundance of food brought right to our home... for free. We've enjoyed multiple loads of fresh produce and yummy artisan breads. He provides!

Today's gifts included green and red bell peppers, two seedless watermelons, artichokes (we can't wait for some of mom's famous Spinach Artichoke Dip... yum!) and lots of squash and zucchini.

The freezer is well-stocked with breads of all kinds...

... and an abundance of chicken! Back in December, the chicken truck broke down in front of Mrs. Hoffman's mother's home, so Mrs. Hoffman loaded up their twelve passenger van with chicken. They gave much of it away and froze some for their own use. A few days ago, she discovered more that was hidden in the depths of her mother's freezer. God saved it away for us to enjoy now!

We have been given so many bananas also! Thus, we have enjoyed some fresh, others baked into banana bread and many frozen for smoothies!

How kind of God to pour out these blessings on us. It certainly helps the grocery bill!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

As Wickham so poignantly said...

"But, the carriage awaits. Duty and honour call me to the north. And so, come, my dear. Let us say not farewell, but as the French have it, Au Revoir!"

Well, our "carriage" was a yellow box truck, "duty" is code for a new season of life, and "the north" is still below the Mason-Dixon line (a very important detail...).

The last few weeks of July found us saying our goodbyes (for now).  We enjoyed meals with friends, parties together, and lots of prayers for our new adventure.  Joined by friends and family, we packed and prepared to move out and make way for our wonderful new friends, the Clarks.

When Saturday morning came, many tears fell as we drove away, but soon the scenery outside cheered our hearts.  Traffic and a downpour in Atlanta couldn't dampen our spirits as we sang, chatted on the walky-talkies, and snapped photos.  A brief stay in Greenville and then more driving brought us to the DC area and to family.  We spent the night with my dearest cousin and got ready for the last short leg to our destination: Maryland, home for the next 10 months.

We were greeted by two families, our host family, the Hoffmans, and another sweet family, who helped unload all our belongings and fed us lunch.  Another family left a gift basket of tea treats, chocolate, and books. (Do they know us, or what?) We unpacked over the next couple of days, met our Maryland Berrys (who brought brownies) and a fellow Pastor's College family.  

The girls and I found a lovely, scenic drive that landed us at a shopping center, and we spotted new places and parks to frequent. Sunday, we attended our (temporary) new church, and ate out (a luxury we won't splurge on often!).

A week later, we're still settling into a routine, still trying to find homes for our things, still snapping a photos, and hopefully starting school. 

We miss home an awful lot but are already seeing God use our "extended vacation" in excellent ways. Who could ask for anything more?

Wickam suggest Au revoir, but, in the spirit of the Mr. J, we'd rather opt for "See you later." So, a tout a l'heure!