Friday, February 28, 2020

6 Things I Learned This Winter

I’m so excited to take part in “What I Learned” hosted every quarter by, Emily P Freeman: an author, podcaster, and co-founder of Hope*Writers an online community for writers. Honestly, winter was crazy for me and my family, because we just moved into our new home in Colorado. Thankfully, we were able to get our stuff unpacked quickly. However, it takes time to settle in after a big move. Ever since the New Year began, we've been honing in on a good routine for our family, which has given us time to work on homeschool while my twins are napping.

6 Things I Learned This Winter

1. Photoshoots in the snow with small children aren’t ideal. 
For Christmas, my brother-in-law, Josh, and his girlfriend, Katya, came to visit for for holidays. We were so excited, because Josh’s plan was to propose while he was in town!! Josh told Katya the plan was to take family photos, which was just a cover for the surprise engagement. The morning of the proposal it was really snowing outside, so we all got bundled up and headed to do our photoshoot. Honestly, it was freezing cold and in most of our family pictures my poor girls aren’t very crying and upset. We were happy to be there for Josh and Katya, but I won’t be doing another winter photoshoot anytime soon.

2. I can’t listen to true crime podcasts when I’m home alone. 
Every week, I listen to The Popcast with Knox McCoy and Jamie B Golden. Back in January, they released an episode called, “True Crime in Pop Culture”. They recommended lots of different true crime podcasts, books, and tv shows. I started listening to true crime podcasts before when we lived in Hong Kong, so I was excited to have some new true crime recommendations from Knox and Jamie. So, I downloaded some new episodes and starting listening. It’s safe to say, I listened to way too many true crime episodes, because by the end of the night I was scared and couldn’t go to sleep. From then on, I’ll decided to limit my true crime podcasts to when my husband’s home, so I’m not scared to death!!

3. “Let’s Take the Long Way Home” by, Gail Caldwell is a MUST READ. 
During one of my Hope*Writers Tuesday Teachings, Marion Roach Smith taught us about writing memoirs. She also recommended some of her favorite memoirs one of them being, “Let’s Take the Long Way Home” by, Gail Caldwell. I was so thrilled to find this book on Hoopla and started listening right away. I couldn’t put it down and listened to the whole book in just one day!! The way Gail shares about her friendship with Caroline Knapp is incredible. I gave it five stars on my Goodreads and can’t wait to read Caroline’s known memoir called, “Drinking: A Love Story”.

4. Taking care of myself, by making my writing a priority again. 
Last year, I joined Hope*Writers to gain support from a writing community as I write my very first book. It’s an exciting time and my girls can’t wait for my book to be finished, so they can buy it. They’re so funny. I’m thankful to be able to make my writing a priority again as I write on my blog, email my girls, and write in my book. I am a writer and I’m thankful to God for helping me to remember who I am.

5. Don’t question Colorado’s ability to produce snow. 
Recently, my family moved to Colorado. In the first week, we snowed for four days straight. I love snow! Honestly, I was excited to have so much snow which welcomed us to our new home. Then, things seemed to taper off and we didn’t have as much snow as I thought we would in the coming months. We didn’t even have a white Christmas. What’s the deal? So I started thinking to myself, “Come on Colorado can’t you do better than that?” In just a matter of weeks, I’ve learned I should never mock Colorado, because in February we have had record snow fall and for over two weeks. My bad!! I will do my best to not question you again. #snowfordays

6. The stomach bug sucks. 
We’ve had an unwanted visitor the past week, the stomach bug. I did not invite him into our home, but he came to visit and wreak havoc upon our lives anyway. Everyone was sick, no one was spared. Each time I thought it was over, I cleaned and sanitized everything praying this would be it for us. Only to be woken up at 1 am to find, someone else was throwing up again. So many sleepless nights and caring for my girls allowed them to “share” the stomach bug with me, my husband, and my sister-in-law. I tried my best not to get mad, but there comes a point when you’re just over it. Praying for healing for my sister-in-law Hannah and that this stomach bug would leave our home, never to return again.

Now it’s your turn, what did you learn this Winter?

Monday, February 17, 2020

My Love for Hong Kong and China

My precious family in Hong Kong (Februrary 2019)

Back in August 2018, my family of seven sold all of our belongings and followed God’s call on our life to live in Hong Kong, while my husband flew for Hong Kong Airlines. Jon and I have always had a deep love for Asia, specifically China, as we have had many family and friends who lived in Hong Kong and China over the years. To this day, many of them are still living in these countries. Even though, we're already back in the states, my heart in heavy for our loved ones in Hong Kong and China during the current Coronavirus outbreak. We get updates from them daily and try our best to encourage them, even when life feels overwhelming for them.

They told us, China was going to implement a revised method to track people infected by the Coronavirus. On February 12, the day the new method started, China reported 14,840 new coronavirus cases, which was a massive jump from previous reports. In total, there are currently 60,390 confirmed cases worldwide, including 1,370 fatalities. Thankfully, this new tracking method has allowed China to have a better picture of how many people are infected. Click the link to continue to track the Coronavirus.

Last week, I read these “Final words from Dr. Li Wen Liang” and I think it's important to share his story in his own words with you. Honestly, I’m so thankful for Dr. Li Wen Liang!! Praising God for his goodness in Dr. Li Wen Liang’s life even as he faced death, leaving Wuhan, and his family. After you finish reading it, I’ll remind you of a few ways to continue to pray for the people around the world begin impacted by the Coronavirus. It's going to be a long road for them. They will need our support and encouragement over the weeks and months as they ride out the aftermath of this outbreak. They need us now more than ever.


All across China, people are talking about Dr Li Wen Liang. He was the doctor who discovered the novel coronavirus and in the early morning of 7 Feb, 2.58am, he was promoted into glory and went home to be with our Father in heaven. 

Back in December last year, he was arrested for being a whistle blower 'spreading rumors' about a mysterious pneumonia like virus. This morning we found out he was infact a fellow brother in Christ. Our hearts are deeply moved by his sacrificial choice to spread awareness about the virus despite the risks he faced, especially to his reputation and to his own health. 
He continued to care for patients up until he was infected himself. What a legacy to leave behind of what it means to be like Jesus to those hurting in a time of crisis. 
He chose to be an example of Immanuel, 'God with us' to the people of Wuhan. 
Can you imagine the joy he must have felt as he entered into eternity and heard the words, "Well done, my good and faithful servant"? 

So today, please pray for his family, especially his wife who is also infected and 8 months pregnant with their second child. May God heal them supernaturally n give them grace, peace, strength and comfort during this time.

Dr Li Wen Liang penned a deeply touching Chinese poem below of how he would miss his family, his beloved Wuhan n quoted 2 Tim 4:7-8 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.

"The Hero Who Told The Truth"

Here is a captivating, heart-touching Chinese poem I've tried to translate into English. It was written in memory of Mr Li Wen Liang, a Christian doctor and whistleblower who died from the coronavirus himself after being punished for issuing the first warning about the deadly coronavirus outbreak. 

"I don't want to be a hero.
I still have my parents,
And my children,
And my pregnant wife who's about to give birth,
And many of my patients in the ward.
Though my integrity cannot be exchanged for the goodness of others,
Despite my loss and confusion,
I should proceed anyway.
Who let me choose this country and this family?
How many grievances do I have?
When this battle is over,
I will look up to the sky,
With tears like rain."

"I don't want to be a hero.
But as a doctor,
I cannot just see this unknown virus
Hurting my peers
And so many innocent people.
Though they are dying,
They are always looking at me in their eyes,
With their hope of life."

“Who would have ever realised that I was going to die?
My soul is in heaven,
Looking at the white bed,
On which lies my own body,
With the same familiar face.
Where are my parents?
And my dear wife,
The lady I once had a hard time chasing?"

"There is a light in the sky!
At the end of that light is the heaven that people often talk about.
But I'd rather not go there.
I'd rather go back to my hometown in Wuhan.
I have my new house there,
For which I still have to pay off the loan every month.
How can I give up?
How can I give up?
For my parents without their son,
How sad must it be?
For my sweetheart without her husband, 
How can she face the vicissitudes in her future?"

"I am already gone.
I see them taking my body,
Putting it into a bag,
With which lie many compatriots
Gone like me,
Being pushed into the fire in the hearth
At dawn."

"Goodbye, my dear ones.
Farewell, Wuhan, my hometown.
Hopefully, after the disaster,
You'll remember someone once
Tried to let you know the truth as soon as possible.
Hopefully, after the disaster,
You'll learn what it means to be righteous.
No more good people
Should suffer from endless fear,
And helpless sadness."

"I have fought the good fight. 
I have finished the race.
I have kept the faith.
Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness."

2 Timothy 4:7, Holy Bible


Please join me in prayer.

1. Pray for Dr. Li Wen Liang’s wife who is 8 months pregnant and also infected with the Coronavirus. May God heal them supernaturally and give them grace, peace, strength and comfort during this time.

2. Pray for believers in Hong Kong and China, who are there during this tumultuous time. Ask God to help them be a light to the Hong Kong and Chinese people, even on days when they’re overwhelmed and discouraged.

3. Pray for doctors, nurses, and all medical professionals to have divine wisdom to know how to care for their patients.

4. Pray this virus passes quickly and lets the Chinese people get back to life as usual.

5. Pray, God would be glorified in all of this, because He loves the Hong Kong and Chinese people and have not forgotten them.

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." - 2 Timothy 4:7

Monday, February 10, 2020

Overcoming My Fears

I hate blood. It makes me queasy and sick to my stomach. In the past, I’ve even passed out at the sight of blood. I’m not kidding!

Back in September 2008, Jon and I were living in East Texas, while my husband attended college at LeTourneau University. Unfortunately, he needed to have his wisdom teeth removed and I was the person there to care for him following his oral surgery. Thankfully, the surgery was very successful. Following the procedure, the nurse explained to me I needed to have Jon’s prescriptions filled at the pharmacy. She also stressed the importance of changing the gauze in Jon’s mouth every hour, so they didn’t get infected. I loaded my very groggy husband into our silver Chevy Nova car and drove to Walmart to fill all of his prescriptions.

It was a hot day, so I left Jon in the car and quickly ran inside to have the prescriptions filled. They told me it would be a little while, so I headed back to the car to check on Jon, because it was almost time to change out the gauze.

I got back into the driver’s seat and looked at Jon trying to figure out the best way to reach the gauze in his mouth. I decided to get out of the car and walked around to the passenger seat where I could have a better angle to see inside Jon’s mouth. I sat down next to Jon and was immediately overwhelmed by the sight of blood in his mouth. I turned white as a sheet.

Even in Jon’s haziness, he knew something was wrong. My sweet husband, tried his best to communicate with me and urge me to get into the backseat of the car. I shut the passenger door and got into the backseat of the car. As soon as I sat down, I passed out.

Jon rubbed my leg to let me know he loved me and assure me, I wasn’t alone. When I came to, I was so confused and couldn’t figure out why we were in the Walmart parking lot.

I called my precious friend, Janet, and she came to our rescue! She drove down to meet us at Walmart, helped change Jon’s gauze, and make sure I had all the prescriptions we needed. I’m so thankful for her willingness to love on us in this amazing way.

My aversion to blood is still very strong today.

I know it might sound silly, but I’ve been nervous for the day when our girls start to lose their teeth. I just get queasy thinking about pulling out their teeth. As a result, for the past year or so, I have refused to pull any teeth out of my daughter, Olivia’s mouth.

Last Thursday morning, Olivia’s fourth tooth was ready to come out. Unfortunately, my husband was gone and I was the only one home to help pull out her tooth. GREAT!! Honestly, I was nervous and starting to freak out just a little. I needed moral support and someone to coach me through this, so after getting Jon’s voicemail, I called my Mom.

My Mom told me how to pull out Olivia’s tooth, then reassured me I could do this and everything would be okay. Olivia held the phone while I got ready to pull out her tooth. She was so brave. Her tooth came out and I immediately began to cry and hug Olivia, because I had done it. I was so thankful for my Mom’s unending love and support.

I’m so thankful for these women God has put in my life to love on my in weakness!! These were truly humbling experiences, but constant reminders, God’s power is made perfect in my weakness!!

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

2019-20 Homeschool Curriculum Choices

Honestly, our homeschool year has been crazy! Last year, we moved and traveled quite a bit making it hard to find time to do homeschool. We’ve done our best with what we had as we lived out of our suitcases for months on end. Finally, God answered our prayers and brought together our housing situation, which allowed us to move to Colorado last October. I’m so excited, because since January we’ve finally gotten settled and into a good school routine.

On top of everything else, I have 19 month old twin girls and they’re very busy!! As a result, it is challenging to do our book work while they’re awake. For now, I wait until the twins nap time, so I can work on the big girls language arts, phonics, math, handwriting, and science.

I’m so proud of Olivia, Sophie, and Matilda!! They’ve worked so hard this school year, even as we lived out of our suitcases the girls worked hard each day to get their schoolwork finished. I appreciate their flexibility as we have tried to figure out what will work best for our family this year. I love them so much!!


Bible, Memory Verse, History, Read-Alouds: Sonlight Core C
Write the Word for Kids: Cultivate What Matters Write the Word for Kids: Fruit of the Spirit Journal
Science: Exploring Creation with Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day

2ND GRADE: Olivia 
Language Arts: The Good and the Beautiful Language Arts Level 2
Handwriting: The Good and the Beautiful Handwriting Workbook Level 2
Math: Math-U-See Gamma
Readers: Sonlight Grade 3 Readers

1ST GRADE: Sophie
Language Arts: The Good and the Beautiful Language Arts Level 1
Handwriting: The Good and the Beautiful Handwriting Workbook Level 1
Math: Math-U-See Beta
Readers: Sonlight Grade 1 & 2 Readers

PREK: Matilda
Phonics: Sing, Spell, Read, & Write “All Aboard” and “On Track”
Handwriting: Handwriting Without Tears: My First School Book
Math: Math-U-See Primer
Read-Alouds: Sonlight Preschool Read-Aloud Books

For more information, here are the links to the homeschool curriculum we are using this school year. Sonlight 

The Good & The Beautiful

Rainbow Resource 

Cultivate What Matters


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