grandparents.

my mom’s parents are here. i am really excited to be able to spend time with them. they are an amazing couple that has been married 58 years. i realized in the past week or so that i really don’t know very much about them, and that made very sad almost sick. there is so much to learn from them. my grandpa turns 80 this year. him and Johnnie Belle (: [who I’m named after] have been around the world; i have so much to learn.

tonight my sister, papa, and i went to the snowball place on the “corner” [as my grandpa would say], and we got flavored ice. my grandpa said he remembered being in Jamaica as boy eating these. they only had about three flavors, which is completely different from the 100 or so flavors to choose from now. he got guava, his favorite childhood fruit. oh, and earlier in the day, my grandpa asked if he could take my car out for a minute, and the next time i got in my car, i had a full tank of gas. that was a blessing, especially since my gas light came on as i was rolling into the driveway.

i think i am going to document the stories and things i learn about them on here. it will be more for me, so i won’t forget these things, but i am sure there will be a good story or two.

love.

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flooded?

so there has been a lot going on.

today though, it has rained. it started raining sunday morning, and it seems as if it hasn’t stopped.

right now the rain is silenced, but the forecasts calls for more rain. there are people being affected all over atlanta. i am thankful for where i am now, but i am hurting for those people whose houses, apartments, trailers have been flooded. i can’t imagine being homeless in a time like this. i just want to take some time to really pray for all of these displaced people. Lord, i know that your work will be done through this tragedy. i hope we can shine your light and be the salt to these people hurting, moving, and loosing.

love.

i’m home!

i’ve been home for two days now. it’s weird being home, but it is weird in a good way. i was immediately welcomed back into the states with community. my closest friends, my family, and joseph all came to the airport and ate dinner at my house, so we could all catch up and share stories. although i am suffering from jet lag, i am pretty excited about life right now. i am still processing everything that happened on the trip, and as i do, i will continue to update you all.

i loved traveling and being with my team. i also loved being at english camp! it was a community of believers and nonbelievers, all finding a common ground, a place to feel welcomed, a place to learn, and a place to feel loved. it was so comforting and so fun. community is one of the things i really loved about college and living in the dorms, so it was such a good feeling to have that community again. in estonia, there was always someone to laugh with, always someone to talk with, and always someone to dance with!

one of the hardest things for me is missing the girls i built relationships with. i wish i could call up sandra, iris, rael, anna maria, regina, krete, birgit, katrin, carolina, cornelia, and all the others and go get coffee and talk. they are friends that live so far away. friends that i haven’t stopped thinking about. i am so thankful to have met all the girls. they have all impacted me, and as silly as it sounds, a part of my heart is with them in estonia.

i feel different, and i know i am changed for the better. i have learned so much. i have really learned how to open up to people and skip all the small talk. that was vital to building relationships in such a short period of time. it required being vulnerable and stepping out. i, by no means, did it all perfectly, but it is something i improved in and look forward to growing in. i look back and i see things that i could have said or done differently, but i try and not dwell on those thoughts; i want to learn from them.

i want to thank you all for your prayers and for your donations! you all impacted the lives of the youth in Estonia, and that is so exciting!

here are some pictures:

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love.

I am sitting here in Tallin, Estonia with :
Sam Cold, Meredith DeAnda, Carolina, Cornelia, Trinu, and Judith for the last night. These girls are amazing, all in different ways. There love for God is so evident, and I am so thankful to have met these girls. I have so many thoughts and stories to share with you all. I will come back to the states as a changed person. Changed for the good. Thank you all for the prayers. We arrive back in the states Monday at like 630. We leave the place we are now in less than 5 hours. So crazy!

Love.

Camp is over. It was so great. God definitely moved through the students and leaders. Can’t wait to share. Tonight we rest, and tomorrow is the after party with the students. It will be a lot of fun but also sad to say goodbye to the people we have spent every waking moment with. Thanks for all the prayers and encouragement. See you all next week.
Love.

aitah

Allo my friends. We have arrived after about two days of travelling, half on a plane and the rest of the time on a bus, ferry, and walking. It’s crazy. Everything is pretty different. The thing that is most challenging is the language difference. I think the ones of us on the team that know no Estonian feel bad. We gave been learning some phrases like aitah, which means thank you! We are all at a coffee shop now. Tomorrow we train for the english camp that starts on Sunday. Last night we stated at a hostile/house/hotel. It was pretty sweet, very nice. There were so many different people. Sorry this blog is very scattered probably because I can’t see the whole screen on the iPod I’m typing this on my iPod.
Love to all.
P.S. you guys are seven hours behind us in time. It is like 5 in the morning for you guys.

feelings

AHHHH! I am so excited. During this whole process, I think I only stressed about money one time, which is awesome because I use to be a huge worrier. God freed me from that! Our team raised the money we needed with no problems. Yesterday, I started to feel a little overwhelmed, tired, nervous, scared. I think that is probably natural. Joseph encouraged me to read some scripture and pray about it. It was nice to just sit and reflect on why I am going over there. Then at college group, I was really encouraged by my friends. REALLY encouraged. I felt so loved. I am excited to be that to other people, to be encouraging and loving. I don’t want to shove anything down their throats, I just want to be a light to the girls and guys in Estonia and share what God has done for me. I must pack, but I will leave you with a picture. Feel free to post a caption. 

pup and flowers

love.