May 28, 2009

Congratulations Andrew!

We are so proud of you on finishing high school...what an accomplishment!!!! We wish we could be there in person to celebrate with you but know that we are thinking of you this week. Although we do not get to see you too often, Lacie talks about you quite a bit! In fact, she took your senior photo this week to school for her show 'n tell day. She also wore her, I Love Hockey, shirt as well. It was way too precious! You are loved and missed greatly! I am sure both Lacie and Nathan will look forward to spending time with you next year when we are home for our next stateside time.
Know that we are praying for you and your next chapter of life. God has great plans for you and we look forward to watching it all unfold! Jeremiah 29:11
Much love and prayers,
Steve, Monica, Lacie and Nathan

Aww....Lacie and Nathan love their cousin, Andrew!

Lacie "learning" to play a bit of street hockey! :)

Lacie LOVED getting to wear Andrew's own hat one day at lunch...very special!

Lacie lost her FIRST tooth

Lacie came to me yesterday telling me that her tooth was hurting a bit. After inspecting the tooth, I saw that it was almost about to come out. WOW...her first tooth is coming out. It was hanging barely inside but she wanted her Daddy to have the honor of getting the tooth out. So, we headed out to Daddy's office and he finished the job! :) We all gave high fives and Lacie just kept smiling. We found her tooth pillow (given to us by Sarah Warren!) and put her tooth inside to wait for the tooth fairy. We went to church last night (rare treat for our family but friends from another mission organziation is hosting a huge pastor's conference. It was so special for me to sit with Steve in a service (where he was not preaching) and the kids were watched by volunteers in children's church. After I came home with the kids, (Steve stayed with several of our pastors/leaders for another session at the conference.) we got ready for bed and I asked Lacie if she wanted to put her tooth under her pillow for the tooth fairy to come get her tooth? She said no way. She wanted to leave her tooth pillow by the phone so we could CALL the tooth fairy for her to come get her tooth. Way too cute!!! :)
When she got up for school this morning, she had E10 in coins (about a little over one dollar)waiting for her and she is looking forward to going to town soon to buy her OWN candy!
Now she tells us that ANOTHER tooth is loose....we told her the goal is to not lose all her teeth at one time! So, I have one child getting his baby teeth and one starting to lose her baby teeth. Steve said it may not be too long before he starts to lose his teeth and
needs his first set of "false teeth"....what a hoot! :)

Lacie's FIRST tooth is gone...what a smile! :)

Lacie's tooth pillow and little tooth (the little white thing to your left of the pillow!)

The tooth pillow is ready and waiting for the PHONE call to the tooth fairy!


Nathan's new favorite word is....BALL! Every type of ball...the soccer ball, basketball, football (yes, the American one!), volleyball (thanks, Kimber!), dryer ball from the dryer, ALL balls!
He is definitely all boy in many ways...cannot wait to see what sports he likes to play.

Meet the Lesibovu Area

Back in February, the Lord opened the door to begin new work in an area called Lesibovu, which is south of Manzini and about one and half hours from our home in Swaziland. Steve was invited by the indvuna, chief's assistant, to come show the JESUS film and lead in a week of revival services. Through these opportunties, hearts were changed and several made decisions for Jesus Christ. Folks asked when could Steve come back to teach them more about God's word. Steve started going every Saturday afternoon to this new work area and sharing the love of Jesus Christ. Each week, the group is hungry to hear more about Jesus and how much He loves each one of them. This past Saturday, May 23, 28 people out of the approx. 50 people in attendance decided to make the most important decision of their lives and chose to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior....Praise the Lord!!! We thank God for His faitfulness and for all our new brothers and sisters in Christ! Pray for God's peace and comfort for all these new believers as many struggle with leaving behind deep, seeded traditional beliefs. Pray for their thirst to be fulfilled by the true source of living water, Jesus!
Enjoy the faces of Lesibovu...Bible studies, times with the kids, showing the JESUS film, talking to local schools, etc....the Swazis are beautiful creations of God!

Happy Mother's Day, Mom!

Lacie and Mom enjoyed a fun day together on Mother's Day with other friends as Daddy and Nathan were back in Swaziland. Our family spent some time together before we lost our "boys" to Swaziland. On Mother's Day, we ate at Mugg and Bean for lunch after attending church, shopped at the mall a bit and spent time together. Lacie even bought me beautiful flowers...go Lacie and where did you get the money?!?! :)
I LOVE being a mom and sooo blessed with two beautiful and precious children that God has given to Steve and I!!! Steve and I are also thankful for the great moms God has given to us, too, even though we could not be with them in person on Mother's Day. We thank God for them in our lives! We love you!

Hang on tight, Lacie!

Lacie and her friend, Ellie Anderson, both had their first ride on a camel while Lacie and Monica were hanging in Jo'burg follwing Lacie's tonsillectomy surgery a couple weeks ago. Friends came from Swaziland for a holiday and to hang with us for a few days. We had a blast! The camels were at a craft market and the girls were way excited to go on it all by themselves. We just told them to hang on tight! :)
Lacie and Ellie on the camel ride....Lacie finished her ride and asked when she could go again? :)

After it was all done....Lacie did not want to get off! Oh, the adventures of growing up in Africa!

Hanging at the Hospital

Last month on April 28, our family left home in Swaziland and headed to the big city of Johannesburg for both kids to have different surgeries. Lacie was scheduled to have her tonsils out on April 29 and Nathan a corrective birth defect procedure on May 4. Well....Lacie ended up getting a cold that went to her chest so the doctor was not comfortable in doing the surgery as scheduled on April 29. He then postponed the surgery until May 5. In the waiting game for the kids to have their surgeries, they both also caught a stomach bug. Needless to say, we rested quite a bit, watched a LOT of movies and did our best to be patient in the waiting time. God was so good to give us missionary friends that helped us out in many ways during this time, too. Both kids did have their surgeries and did very well. Steve and Nathan were able to return home to Swaziland on May 8, while Lacie and Monica were released to return home on May 13. We thank God for great medical facitilies, doctors and a company that sees the importance of gret medical care for the whole family.
While we were in Jo'burg for this visit, Lacie's ears, nose and throat doctor, Dr. Hockman, had a CAT scan ordered for her left ear. Lacie has currently been dealing with about a 30% hearing loss in her left ear. It has been discovered that Lacie was born with a bone that is not in the right place of her left ear structure. Plans are now being discussed on when the next surgery will be done to prayerfully correct her hearing loss. This is a HUGE answer to prayer!!! Although from a mother's heart, it was hard to hear that my little girl has to endure yet another surgery in her little life. God is much bigger than surgeries and we know He will take care of her!
Praise the Lord we are all home again and doing great....thank you, God, for taking care of us!
Lacie and Daddy hanging out before her scheduled surgery

Nathan not quite sure what is happening but doing his best to hang in there!

Aunt Jane teaching Lacie how to play the card game, Uno. Lacie did pretty well for a four-year old but thought her Leapster game was better! :)

Mommy and Nathan in his scrubs right before his surgery procedure. Isn't he just too cute??? :)