Thursday, June 30, 2011

there's just something oh, so sweet

about a group of boys playing baseball.
Maybe it's from watching The Sandlot too many times in my life.[which is one of my all time favorite movies.]
It's these kind of pictures though, that I hope these lil men will look back on the memories of being a boy playing ball.
 [yep, can't get over how cute this is.]
 and of course, the ladies had to get pictures with this star ball player!

riding in the car with my head out and my tongue sticking out...

It finally feels like summer is starting to take place here in Storm Lake.
When it's summer, i like it hot. like hot, HOT.
it's getting there! today's sunshine was the perfect motivation to get out and get lots of errands done!

What are some of your wishes this year?
We have a couple. Actually, we're really just praying more and more about things.
One is a house. We're really praying that something will open up soon in the near future. 
something above ground.:) 
with BIG windows that let's in sunlight. 
(I know, i know, can't be too picky, but hey, that's the ONE thing that i hope for!:)) 

Another is that when we get settled in a house is that we'll soon after get kiddos to join our family.
can't wait.
we're already praying for you, kids, whomever you are!

We enjoyed the late evening after a full day's work, at a baseball game. 
Our dear friend, Deeanna provided us with suckers during the game! 
i love blow-pops.
 and at the game, i had a pleasant surprise!
I got to see my dear friend, Molly! 
We had a nice chat and talk about our summer a little bit. 
It was SO nice to see her!

it was a wonderful way to end a productive day. 
I feel blessed when I get alot done.

happy sunshine day!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Lakeside view

Now, let me start off my telling ya'll, that Ryan and I usually don't get the privilege of looking out at the lake because, well, we don't live anywhere near the lake
On Monday, our street looked like this:
and when a car attempted to get through it, a huge wave came towards the house. 
a WAVE. 
I never thought we'd see a wave in front of our house before!!! 
lol, ryan and i laughed a long time about that. I was mesmerized by all the water in front of the house and he was like, "run! the wave is coming!!" in the midst of everything, we were still able to lighten the mood.

Now after last's year's predicament, which you can read and look back on HERE, we were determined not to let it happen again. Last summer, we had to throw pretty much everything we owned away.

So, instead, this time, we shut off the water in the house. 
Then it seeped through.
and started coming up EVERYWHERE. 
the shower.
the toilet.
the pump.
the walls.
and it came fast.
We kept running back and forth, filling up buckets, throwing the water outside, back and forth, up the stairs and down the stairs.

the water kept coming til about noon the next day.
We stayed up ALL night trying to avoid catastrophe like last year. 
And we did it! My husband is amazing. and wow, oh so strong. I think his biceps got larger over night because of all the lifting buckets that he did all night.

but, guess what? as exhausted as we were and frustrated that this all happened again, we avoided losing everything again! If we had gone to bed and not been up doing homework, we would have been in the same situation last year. 
Our landlord is pretty amazing. He worked around the clock with us. He was here when we were rushing to get water out. He helped all night and all day to help with the water. we feel pretty blessed to have such a great landlord.

well, even with all that that happened. we feel blessed.
pray for the rest of storm lake though. many peoples homes flooded and things were lost. Our town could use your prayers!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

worship in a different language

[see that lil guy sneaking onto the stage?]

Welcome to the Karen people of Storm Lake. 
We're excited to be a part of your fellowship!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

colorful moments

[sitting, talking, and eating with kids and talking about their summer over meals]

[seeing three kids come to know the Lord-angels in heaven are rejoicing! so are we!:)]

[creepy little pinata boy waiting to get ripped apart by children chanting, "candy. candy. CANDY!"]

[a sweet little pinata wondering why she's hanging in the air waiting to get hit!]

[little guy with big muscles breaking open the pinata.]

some other things this past week:

-spent most of my time elevating and icing my toe - i only have another week to get this lil guy i'm babying it as much as i can. It's given me a nice chance to relax and read! 

-speaking of reading, i've been reading  The Hunger Games series...oh. EM. Gee. They are so good. Every spare moment I have, I've been picking up these books. I can't wait for the movie to come out next  year!

- Ryan and I have only one week left of fostering class...and then it's off to interviews and getting ready for a little person to join our family! 

I hear thunder rolling outside...which is a rare things to hear in my home since we live in a basement apartment-so it's a treat to get to hear a thunderstorm start! I'm going to enjoy the coziness of home with just me and my hubby!

Have a cozy Sunday Evening!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

CHECK: another on the bucket list complete:)

God gave us a patch of land of a squatter garden here in town! 
Ryan and I are hardly gardeners, but we were thrilled for the opportunity to start a garden:). 
We were told that it was "a gift from the city," for Ryan being a pastor and us working with kids. 
Interesting and out of the blue...and such a fun blessing!

We cultivated the ground and for the first time ever, I used a hoe.
I never knew how rich the soil was here in Iowa! It's so dark and rich. 

We're planting beans, zuchini, strawberries, cucumbers, and all sorts of peppers.
It's kinda late to be starting to plant, but we're still hoping that something will come up from it.:)

 Someone advised us that we should get some plants that have already started and just plant those in the ground, so we raided the garden section.

Didn't expect this to be completed so soon on our bucket list!
But it is!
Now, we just have to watch and see if anything grows (because we're starting late in planting our seeds-about a month behind.)

Pretty sweet, huh? Can't wait to eat garden fresh veggies:)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

my family

I've spent a week with them.
Can you tell how much i love 'em?
I just can't get enough of my family!!! 
I want to introduce you to them...cuz well, i think the WORLD of them:).

 So here. 
Here's our whole bunch:) We're the originals. 

And then I got married to that stud standing beside me:) and now he's a part of our happy, crazy, loud bunch now too.

So that was everyone.  Let me get a little more personal.

This here is my cute daddy. 
Now, you ask, why am i holding on to his ear?
Little secret about me...I had a weird obsession with holding onto my parents' earlobes to help me fall asleep as a kid. Till this day of full grown womanhood, i still hold onto my own earlobe to fall asleep. (or my husbands;) lol.)

but for reals, now, this man is incredible. 
He is just the man I most most most admire. and love. and respect. and adore. so very much.
He is the biblical model of a father. 
in the words of Pastor Broggi, "A good mark of a good father is how he treats his wife."
Oh, and how he treats my mom. He's so loving to her. If you watch them for just a few minutes, you can see just how much he loves her and makes her so happy.

This is the lady that I want to be when I grow up.
My mom's priority all our lives was to watch us grow and raise us well.
She did it, not by being a career woman and focusing on work or making money, but by staying home and enjoying all those good, bad, and crazy moments with us girls.
She sacrificed working a job.
She sacrificed leaving her family in the Philippines.
She trusted that her priority of ministry, work, and love was for her family.
Proverbs 31 describes my mother to the tee.
Her love for the Lord.
Her commitment to our family.
She's also the cool one that buys my clothes:) She's got fantastic taste.

This is Ilene of muchlove_illy.
Yeah, she's as cool as her blog shows:).
She's my role model.
My fashion advisor.
My favorite big sister.
She and I can look at each other and know what the other is thinking about.
We were roomies for a year in Chicago before I got married. Often I reminisce about our year living in our 30th floor apartment of Chicago, often siting by the big window overlooking the city, while drinking coffee with whipped cream and sprinkles as we talked about everything.
Those were sweet cozy crazy fun times.
She can make me laugh probably harder than anyone else in the world.

 Ashley's our littlest sister.
However, she's not really little anymore. She's actually in highschool, driving, and dressing all cute and trendy. Dang. Wish I were her in highschool;).
This girl is my favorite little sister. 
We had so many years and summers of sharing secrets, driving around with music blaring, and going on sister outings. 
She's the one that I can be a big kid around and do stupid things with. 
Like acting out Hansel and Gretel in our backyard. last christmas. 
no, wait, did I just admit that?
She's so cool. I love her. 
Summers don't seem right without her around.

And this sweet puppy face is the baby of our family.
and my only brother. currently. till Ilene gets married.
This is Peyton Manning E. G. 
This little guys drives me nuts with mushy gushiness for him.
I'm crazy for this boy. 
When I'm home, this little guy is usually waiting outside my door, or snuggling with me on the couch, or sitting outside on the grass watching the cars driving by. 
I keep trying to persuade mom and dad that he should live in Iowa with me.
But that wouldn't fly. 
My family's too in love with him too.:)

and this man, is my family. We're our own little family. together:).
and every time we get the chance to go home to SC together-things are just complete.
I get to see him relax. enjoy himself. not have to do anything but have fun.
It's really cool how he loves my family too.
He's the only person in the whole world that I don't have to say "goodbye" to, because anywhere either of us goes,  we both go together. 
He's my best friend.

can you tell yet?
that I'm crazy about my family?
My parents did it right.
They gave our family the gift and the blessing of closeness.
All these years of consistent family times, family devotions and prayers, family dinners, etc...
is what brought our family to where it is today.
Bonded so close, that even with so much distance between us, we're close anyways.
and I'm proud of it.

Love ya'll.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Snapshots of home.

While in Minneapolis, I broke something in my foot. I think it was my little ring toe (is that what you even call it?), but the pain is kinda all over my foot, so I'm not sure if there's more broken in there than just the toe. 
But for now, I'm just staying off it, elevating it, and icing it, cause from what I heard, there isn't much you can do about a broken toe. (also, I'm scared stiff of going to the doctor so I try to avoid it if i can!:)) while I'm doing that, I've been flipping through the many pictures I took while I was at home.

It was hard to leave. 
Actually, it's always hard to leave.
I hate saying goodbye to my family, my home, and my town.
I bawled like a baby when I said bye to my sweet pup, Peyton, and bawled again at the airport as I held onto my family one last time before the many months of distance separated us once again.
At the same time, I'm thankful for this somewhat spontaneous trip that we took to SC for a week. 
Best week of the year in my book:). 

Anyways, here are some snapshots of home. 
Bear with me; there may be more posts to come with pictures of my time at home. 
I think the next few posts of pictures will give you a tiny idea of what this Carolina girl is missing.

Beaufort, SC.

[i have a thing for bridges, boats, and water.]

[goofy moments with my sisters:)]

[my favorite bridge to drive over. connects the mainland and Lady's Island.]
 [Community Bible Church-my home church.]
 [beach time with the family]

 [snuggling with mom and dad]

[my sweetie pie pup, Peyton Manning E. Gamboa]
[shopping in Savannah]

So, here's one of the many posts of home.
What can I say?
I miss it all. 

Love you, family. 
You're the best encouragement to me.
The best at making me laugh.
My favorite company over meals:).
Wish I were closer to ya'll...

Monday, June 20, 2011

The marriage I admire...

 Happy 28th Anniversary, Mom and Dad!!!

Your marriage is our model.

Your love for each other is evident: in our you serve each other, put the other first, and how you work together to make our family strong. 
Thanks for loving the Lord and using your lives to worship GOD together.
Thanks for showing that to my sisters, me, and my husband. 
We love you so much!

[aren't my parents beautiful??:)]