Monthly Archives: September 2014

Update in Romania #4 – Happy Birthday Bucharest!

The city of almost 2 million have been celebrating that it’s been 555 years since Bucharest was first mentioned in documents. On Saturday many of the local churches gathered in a park and made a cooperative effort at combining the celebration with an outreach carnival. There was face painting and games and puppet shows – it was all very fun. Our Addy was quite the hulahooper and Pops did a great job of catching these photos!

 Addy & hulahoop 2  Addy & hulahoop

Since the country is moving away from the orphanage system they have tried to place most of the healthy children in small groups with a caregiver (Doamna) that live in an apartment. In our sector of the city, Anchor of Hope Ministry (that Marie and Christian work with) have three apartments they are sponsering. Marie and Christian left the girls with us to join them at the park later while they picked up 5 children (ages 2.5, 4, 5, 5, 6) from an apartment to enjoy the carnival festivities. Their Doamna decided to come along!

Mercy and Mama 9-20-14   Addy 555 celebration 9-20-14

When Danny, the girls and I arrived, the first person I saw was Florin Soare! He, of course, was the official event photographer. Avery had stayed home with their new baby. It truly is a “Small World”. Most of the workers wore T-shirts with 555 on them that translated “Love Bucharest, Love your Neighbor” and they had pamphlets that were handed out. It was encouraging to see the local believers from different churches working together.

 Marie and Ionut and adi   Christian & Danny 9-20-14

We ended with treating the children to McDonald’s which was a big hit for everyone. Of course with seven children we have ice cream dripping everywhere and Christian says to Marie (who is the most fluent in Romanian) – “How do you say melting???? Their ice cream is melting!” Pops trying to help says (loudly) “MMEELLTTIINNGG…..”

Mercy and Ana 9-20-14   Addy & Cristina

This last Thursday I had the privilege of going to the baby hospital with two other workers from Anchor of Hope. It was really a long walk getting there and lots of physical work but well worth it. With travel time I was gone probably six hours.

One room held four babies all under two months. The youngest was a beautiful boy only two weeks old and absolutely perfect and healthy at this time. Another little guy had such trouble taking the bottle, very gassy and spitting up…most likely allergic to milk or has GERD. He made some good eye contact even though he’s only one month old!

There is a tiny part Asian girl only a month old who obviously has some sort of genetic condition. As I worked with her I was 95% sure she couldn’t focus or see. Later I realized her eyelashes were inverted and looking online it says that the condition can scratch and damage the cornea. She had a weak cry that sounded like a kitten, but she did eat well.

Last we had a very big guy only 2 months old without even a name. He was so huge we lovingly called him Gandalf. He responded well to the infant massage and gave me some wonderful smiles. However later when it came to the 2nd feeding, his bottle arrived last, so it was propped by the caregiver. All the volunteers hands were full with feeding the smaller ones whose bottles had already come. He was inconsolable after so much attention and refused to take his bottle.

As I held each child and fed them I would pray over them quietly and talk with them, make eye contact with them, stroke their faces and massage them with lotion. The other room held five other babies all around 6-9 months, two severely disabled. I am hoping to be able to go every Tuesday and will share more next week on these other babies.

While I was at the baby hospital, Christian took Danny across the city to a larger medical facility to have a CT scan. We go again to the doctor Monday morning and will request a MRI. We have been in contact with a doctor in the states, but to be honest, the care here has been excellent!

I believe they have caught a significant injury that some other medical staff in the states overlooked. We are having his films looked at by both US and Romanian doctors. The Lord has truly been good in His protection of us….had we never come here I think this would have remained undiscovered with the course of treatment he was taking.

We have enjoyed each moment here and it’s hard to believe that half of our trip is already past. I have been trying to memorize some scripture again. Several times a day when I see a bird- I try to quote and remember Matthew 6-

“Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description,

care-free in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds!”

Update in Romania #3

2014-09-14 05.00.41 compressed

“Boppie, Boppie tickle my tummy!” So far, reconnecting with the granddaughters has been the highlight of our time….especially with Mercy as she was so little when she left last January. She absolutely is a fire-cracker, full of passion! She likes things tidy and matching. It’s so fun to see their personalities at a young age. I love watching Danny enjoy them. Here is a picture of Mercy’s help with the clothesline on the balcony where you have to be concerned with your underclothing being swept out on your hands and landing on the head of a stranger coming out of the grocery store 19 floors below.

Mercy helping grammie2014-09-12 11.42.52 compressed

I can’t believe another week has passed. The time is flying by. We’ve been used in different ways. I was able to alter Addy’s school uniform SKIRT into a jumper (since it was huge, though the smallest size) and also take some tucks in her blouse and vest. It was great to be helpful and fun to recreate something using buttons and ribbon.

This past week we received the exciting news from Aaron & Cacey that we are expecting a new addition to the family this coming fall. WooHoo #5! You can read about our 2nd grandson coming from Ethiopia here at Aaron’s blog-

A Momentous Decision

Last night Danny & I ventured out on a date night and laughed ourselves silly as we were talking so much we couldn’t remember the metro ever stopping. Needless to say we had to get off and then walk across the platform and wait for a train and go back one stop to get to where we were heading.

2014-09-14 07.26.41 compressed

It’s easy being here. There is lots of grace. I now am confident that this is where we were supposed to be recovering from the accident. When we came, we came in faith, confused and physically hurting. Danny always says hindsight is 20/20. The interesting twist is that after we got here I realized that Danny had not gotten proper treatment in the states. In the US he was seen right away by a physician’s assistant in training and they did not do full back x-rays. Our improvement has been slow and steady, but his back and shoulder were such that we sought medical care here. There is socialized medicine for residents, and private care for others. The care has been excellent and we will see the doctor on Wednesday for all the test results.

preist blessing school

Today was Addy’s first day of big school – they start at what we would consider grade 1.                Our kindergarten level is part of their preschool. It was very interesting as the Orthodox priest was there at the opening ceremonies blessing their public education, incense and sprinkling water. Also every child brings the their new teacher flowers or a plant!

Mercy started her first day of preschool WITHOUT Addy and that was a big day! Grammie even wore a DRESS for the occasion.

Addy first day of school Mercy first day of school

It is really noisy here. We live on the corner of an intersection. Yesterday there was a major collision…but regardless there is constant traffic noise all day long, plenty of honking. When the traffic quiets at night then the zillion trillion dogs (OKAY maybe I am exaggerating) that bark constantly and the gypsy music starts. The music is not soothing to me at all, rather a frenzy type beat. Considering I am completely deaf in one ear I am surprised at how much I miss the quiet country. This picture is looking down from our bedroom balcony.

traffic

However, we are privileged to be here and support our kids here. We are proud of them and the sacrifice they’ve made. If we can make their load a little lighter for just a little while then we will feel like we’ve accomplished something here in Romania. Their task seems huge and our bit seems small so I will end with this new favorite quote-

“I am only one, but I am one. I can’t do everything, but I can do something.

The something I ought to do, I can do. And by the grace of God, I will.”

-Edward Everett Hale

 

Update in Romania #2

“When you help someone out, don’t think about how it looks.

Just do it—quietly and unobtrusively.

That is the way your God, who conceived you in love,

working behind the scenes, helps you out……”

 The words of Jesus in Matthew 6:3-4 msg

Yesterday in the afternoon I waded through a mess of emotions, having a hard time. I really missed my mother and was grieving. I was sad over the brokenness of the relationship with my sister. Even though I had this lovely room and family here in Romania, I felt a little scared and lonely. I wanted my bed in Weimar, California, United States of America. My daughter, Marie, allowed me to verbalize my feelings and listened. She lovingly parented the parent.

Marie and me compressed

You see I was the child who grew up playing alone in my room and I was content to do so. It was very safe and everything was the same schedule. It was comfortable.

I watch my little granddaughters and marvel at how uniquely they are created. BTW, if anyone reading this compares their children to others, please recognize this is harmful. Relish their uniqueness in how their Creator made them. I wish I had known this truth when I was raising our children, rather than thinking there was one standard to strive for instead of embracing their differences.

Mercy and Addy are night and day; it is so fun to watch. Their personalities remind me so much of raising Aaron and Marie, yet they are their own little unique persons. Much of our time here will be ministering to them…Reminding them of their extended family across the ocean…Loving them.

Girls at mall

And that doesn’t seem very “big”. Will they even remember we came? I read this verse yesterday which helped me wade through my emotions and come out victoriously rested in Christ –

“When you help someone out, don’t think about how it looks. Just do it—quietly and unobtrusively. That is the way your God, who conceived you in love, working behind the scenes, helps you out……”

The amazing part to me is realizing how my God has been doing this for Danny and me – working behind the scenes, quietly and unobtrusively helping us along the way. Special family situations, my mother’s passing into eternity, the accident…He has been there holding us quietly the whole time. And now we are in Romania and He calls us to do the same.

Romania sky

So you probably won’t be reading about the amazing things we are doing over here. It looks like we won’t get to help the Orphanage workers take the kids to the ocean. I’m hopeful to visit the baby hospital weekly, and I don’t know when that will start. I’m actually glad it hasn’t started, I still hurt from the accident. So I hang laundry on my balcony and pray over the city.

I’ve realized the things we will be doing won’t seem so amazing, however they are changing me. I’m not in my safe Weimar bedroom with my little schedule anymore. I’m across the world learning how to rest in His grace and the amazing work He is doing.

Jesus says this in the last verse in Matthew 6 – “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”

Pray with us that we can give our entire attention to what God is doing right now here in Romania, and not get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow.

Tree compressed

I want to be like this amazing Romanian tree – firmly rooted, but always growing…