Friday, September 12, 2008

Dominican Republic

There is so much to say & so many ideas & stories swirling through my head, that it is hard to know where or how to start sharing about this amazing country & my amazing experience there.  Aha!  I'll start at the beginning.  What a novel idea.

A phone call:
Me:  'hello Marv?  My name is Tracy and I'm interested in coming on Young Life staff to somewhere in latin america.'
Marv:  'Great!  Do you speak Spanish?'
Me: 'No.'
Marv: 'Have you been to a Spanish speaking country before?'
Me: 'Yes.  I went to Ecuador & Mexico for mission trips in high school.'
Marv: 'What are you doing now?'
Me: 'I am working as a therapeutic recreation specialist at a psych hospital, and I just took a summer job as a youth director at a local church.'
Marv: 'oh'
Me:  'Don't worry, the church job is just for the summer, and the other job I can give them notice anytime.'
Marv: 'Do you know that you will have to raise full financial support.'
Me: 'uh, ok.'
Marv: 'Where would you like to go?'
Me: 'I really don't have a preference - where is there a need?'
Marv: 'I am trying to get together a team to go to Santiago, Dominican Republic.'
Me: 'Great! I'm in.'
Marv: 'Can you come down for a week to see everything?'
Me: 'Sure!  I'll let you know when I get my ticket.'

Ok, that's a rough version, but not too far from the truth.  Gotta love the innocence of youth.  
I went down for my 'visit' and left 2 suitcases of stuff.  I guess I just knew that this was where God wanted me to be.
Marv arranged for me to live with Altagracia to learn Spanish.  She is AMAZING - and was very patient during my learning process.
I wanted until late to write this post & now little ones are crying & fussing - so I will write more later - hope this peaks an interest.
Bottom line - the Holy Spirit was amazing in guiding me & encouraging me.  God had a plan for me in the D.R. & I am eternally different!  More later.
Til then, here is a pic of our Spanish class.  Wow, there are some cooky stories there.
Bill (his wife Joy already knows Spanish), Chad, Daisy(teacher), Yusenny(teacher), Altagracia, Krista, Me, & (Kaylie -Bill's girl).

Monday, September 8, 2008

Sleep Claire! - Please Sleep!

Claire needs to sleep.  Ok, let me revise that.  Claire NEEDS to sleep the whole night through.  She can even wake up once before 10 - I'll deal.  But lately she has been waking up, crying/screaming, throughout the night.  By throughout the night, I mean at least 8 times.  But who's counting?  

I was wasting - I mean spending time blog surfing (not sure if that is even a real phrase), and I saw this video of a man who had about 8 puppies.  They were all yapping  & he began to sing, "Goodnight Sweetheart, well it's time to go . . ."  You can finish singing the song, but the point is that these puppies actually calmed down & all went to sleep.  Are you JOKING????  He can get 8 yelping puppies to quiet down in a cardboard box with the light on, and I cannot get Claire to sleep in her comfy crib with a dry pamper & clean jammies (insert sarcastic comment here).  
I seriously do not think I have slept a solid night's sleep for more than 1 day in a row since the twins have been born. Boo hoo, waa waa.   Yes, girls you are TOTALLY worth it.  Mommy would do this ALL over again.  But praise God I don't have to, and now I think I have a slight caffeine addiction.  I LOVE my sleep, so this is a pretty big display of love.  This is probably where I need to refresh myself on the fact that true love is sacrificial by nature.  I've written about how being a mother means to sacrifice on many different levels for our children - sleep included.  But, man is it HARD!
I really do NOT think that I would be able to endure motherhood, especially sleep deprived motherhood if I did not daily come to God to fill my needs.  If I did not daily remember that He sacrificed His only Son, Jesus so that all that I do on this side of eternity is worth it.  I wish this humbling moment could always sustain me at 3 a.m. when someone is awake.  Sometimes it does & sometimes it is a true battle of the flesh, but I'm beginning to ramble.  All's I know is that God has pledged to BE with me always, to strengthen me when I am weak, and to reward me for my pursuit of Him.  I also know that so many people tell me how much they miss the baby phase & how quickly it passes.  I'm not sure I'll miss this, but I have already seen how quickly it passes.  So please say a prayer for Claire - that she sleeps the WHOLE night through - and so does her mommy - so that tomorrow they can spend some wonderful playtime together.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Indoor Camping - A New Reward

I'm all about bribing - or rather rewarding you girls for listening to mommy the first time.  It has been so hard (to put it mildly) to get you guys to clean your playroom, so . . . I may have found a new incentive.  Indoor Camping.  Not sure how we sto, uhm came by this tent (I think Frank & Sarah), and I am grateful.  In order for it to fit, the playroom floor needs to be visible - what more does any mother want than to see the stained carpet.  God smiled on the event b/c Stella fell asleep on the couch watching Veggie Tales & saved me the trouble of her 'enjoying' the time in the tent.  I found an old head lamp & took Arturo's bike light off & voila you girls were in camp heaven (nope we don't seem to own a flashlight & I thought a candle may be a bad choice).  Armed with a stack full of books & your lights you crawled in, asked be be zipped up & were complete gems.  Today I packed up the the tent & will try to use it for you guys to be good this week - we'll see.