Saturday, November 30, 2013

Bible Lessons

I know I have been the most sporadic blogger lately and I have wanted to share this with you for a while, but we have had people in our home almost constant, so blogging time has been at a minimum.  I am giving 3 Bible lessons now and one of those is to Katiya, Bogdan's mom.  We were so excited when she said that she wanted to start her lessons!

She is on her 4th or 5th lesson now.  My heart was stirred each time I talked with her as it seemed like she was searching.  After the 2nd lesson, she really wanted to know HOW she could be saved and Lina and I spent about 1-2 hours with her talking about how she could be saved.  How exciting it was when she bowed her head to ask Jesus as her Savior!  She has been coming to every single service since then and been doing devotions with her boys every night.  We're praying that God will continue to work in this family and that Ruselan (her husband) and her son, Nikita, will be saved too.  Her lessons are on Fridays.

I am giving two other lessons on Sundays.  One lady, Luda, has also recently made a profession so the lessons are just for clarity.  The other lesson is with Gala.  I don't think she is saved, but she seems to know a lot of the information.  Please be in prayers especially for her lessons.  Pray for me also that God will give me clarity of speech and especially of mind as sometimes it is difficult to give lessons with little ones running around.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Strange Americans

"NO!!!  What are you doing?!"  
I exclaimed in complete disbelief 
as Lydia's dirty little hand started going down into the pickle jar.  
By this time, Eric was rolling over laughing.  
I ignored him and continued, 
"Not at MY table!"

I still remember the first time someone stuck their hand in, 
grabbed out a pickle and offered it to me.
I wondered if they had washed their hands.
Is this typical Ukrainian?  
No.  I don't think I could say that, but it is very common in the village where we live.  
Something that I have not really gotten use to.  
I still rush for a fork before someone sticks their hand in the pickle jar or other canned goods, 
making everyone smile.  
I think I will forever be amusing to them because I am a...
strange American.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Monday, November 11, 2013

Gluten-Free Oven Fried Chicken

One of the things we've missed the most since we started doing a gluten-free diet was oven fried chicken.  So last week I surprised my family with it...just a modified version of it.  I substituted ground oatmeal (oat flour) for the flour and skipped dipping it in the milk and egg whites.  It came out SO good!  When it was all gone, the kids were still asking for more!

It is easy too - my favorite kind of recipe.

Put about 1/4 cup of butter in a baking dish and melt in the oven.

Grind in the blender about a cup of oatmeal, then mix the oatmeal with your favorite seasonings. 
Roll your chicken strips in the oatmeal until thickly coated.
Place the chicken in your pan - coating both sides of the chicken with butter.

Bake on 425 for about 20 minutes - or until tender and white.

It's been exciting to be able to find recipes for my family that we enjoy, are healthy and that actually taste great.  I've just had to be a little more creative. ;)  I'm thinking about Thanksgiving over here and excited to try a green bean casserole with this type of topping on onions.  Now, if only to find a substitute for stuffing...

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Strange Americans

What do you think of when you think of whistling?  The first thing that comes to my mind is happiness.  I think of someone happily walking along, cleaning the house, etc. whistling a happy tune.

Eric, without even thinking about it, goes around whistling hymns.  One Sunday as he was whistling a hymn throughout the church, filling the building with the joyful sound, a few people came up to him and firmly said, "You can't do that!" or "That is rude!"

It took us a minute to figure out that they were talking about him whistling!  To them, whistling is rude - ESPECIALLY inside a building.

We were told this comes from the superstition that, if you whistle you will lose your it is even more rude to whistle at someone else's house. ;)

Even if Eric tried, he can't refrain from whistling.  Everyone still says something, but they all just laugh and understand...
 Americans are Strange!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Vladamir Vonavich

He sat there, slouched over in the chair, just listening to the conversations around him, when Anna came up to him.  
Her little hand slipped into his large wrinkled hands.  
His first thought was that she was trying to greet him.  
Then she sweetly and quietly asked, "Will you please go outside with me?"  
"Why?" he asked with a puzzled look.  
I quickly replied, "Her papa said that she could not go out unless an adult was out there..."  
Before I could finish, he was out of his seat and walking with her towards the door. 

By the time I made it out to the yard, they had already started a game of soccer.  I could not believe he was playing with them!  I rushed back inside to get my camera (everyone probably wondering what I was doing), turned it on, then Oh!  No SD card!  Then I remembered the old one still in my camera bag.  Just maybe, maybe...yes!  It still had enough memory on it!  

I quickly snapped a few pictures then sat down to watch them play.  I watched him, hunched over almost running around.  I watched him as he held his leg the entire time he played and thought, "He really shouldn't be doing that."  Then I looked up at his smile.  And I remembered the hard life he has had.

I remembered the years he spent caring for his bedridden wife with alzheimer's so bad that she would beat on him and scream "what did you do to my husband?"
He still brought her flowers. 

I remembered how disheveled he looked after she passed away. 

I remembered all of the other troubles he's had this past year.

I remembered all of this and looked at his happy face and wanted to cry for the sweet moments of happiness he was having.  And there was no way I was going to make him stop playing.

How thankful I am that God saved this dear, sweet man!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Monday, November 4, 2013

Lydia is 5!

How can it even be possible?!  Only yesterday you were a little bundle in my arms with hair that looked like I styled perfect little baby doll.  How I have enjoyed the years with you!

For the most part, you are

Though  you definitely have your silly, noisy moments ~ ESPECIALLY if you have one on one time. :)

We started the day with birthday spanks/kisses.

Then the hunt was on.

The wrapping is becoming part of our tradition. ;)

 It's always interesting to buy English toys in a foreign country.

All of the kids were busy playing house while Daniel and I prepared the birthday meal...well, I prepared.  He was too busy digging into the cake to help cook.

You requested a green, chocolate cake.  It's hard to see, but it is a light green.  And one of the candles was one of those ever-flame candles.  That always makes it more exciting.

Poor baby Abigail was sick all day, but she got lots of love still.

We finished of the day with a tea party.  With three girls, we have plenty of those.

Happy Birthday my Lyda-bug!


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