Happy New Year

Autumn and winter here in Ukraine has not bought about a lot of activity. The normal everyday plodding along with school and study has been interrupted in a number of interesting ways…

My study (online through Waikato NZ)

I enjoyed my 3 papers on Language & Cognition, ICT and Assessment and managed to finish and pass them near the end of October.

For me it was then a short week’s trip to London to renew my visa. I stayed with my brother and enjoyed being in an English speaking country for awhile, and of course bringing back a lot of goodies from the supermarket that we can’t get here!

Since then I have started Russian lessons once a week (about all my brain can handle) and continued with my 2 students and working around the house.

My friend and I also spent 2 days at another friends house ripping out her old kitchen bench & sink (which was leaking & rotten) and then replacing it with our own workmanship. Not completely mistake-free, but sturdy, workable & safe. It was a fun project.

I was also involved in organizing a café night which we invited women from around our town too. It was a fun night even though it snowed solid the whole night & day beforehand which made it more of an adventure for people to come!

I do feel rather lazy though, and will look forward to enrolling again for what should be my last 3 papers in February.

Jon’s work

By the end of October Jon was ready for midterm break! We calculated that he had driven the road to Kiev over 40 times in the past 2 months! Well little did he know that the break was going to turn into a whole month off work. The Ukrainian government freaked out over the swine flu virus and declared a 3 week quarantine on all schools & public gatherings. The only disadvantage is that he has to make up the time now teaching on Saturdays! Anyway he made the most of the time off, completing his studio downstairs, preparing 2 talks for a youth conference and other bits & pieces.

Then it was back to work for a 6 day week (thankfully only for 4 weeks) until the Christmas holidays. We have really enjoyed our Christmas holidays spending a lot of it working on the lining of the upstairs area, having a wonderful Christmas dinner & day here, a 2 day mini break on our 8th wedding anniversary, buying some musical equipment for Jon’s studio, playing settlers online & generally relaxing INSIDE! We are defiantly having a white winter here…up until mid December it was strangely warm, and then we were hit with cold & white. With a huge amazing dump of snow we spent about 36 hours without power. No big deal really except our water and heating all run of electricity so we were rather happy when it came back on. Dealing with the snow & driving in it has proved some concern at times, but we are thankful for a light, reliable car and always conscious of God’s protection on the roads (while holding tight to the seat at times!! LOL)

Looking forward

We have much to be thankful for and looking forward to 2010 with anticipation. We know that it will bring some changes…

Jon will finish his contract at school at the end of June. We then hope to spend the summer here and then travel back to NZ (maybe via South Africa & India) arriving near the end of September. We plan to be in NZ for 6-12 months but it maybe longer or shorter – who knows what will happen!

We are still hoping and praying for children and want to set aside a day to fast & pray about this matter. If you want to join us on Jan 23rd to pray for a miracle that would be great. We have also started to talk about going down the road of adoption.

Other cool stuff

We now have 2 cats – Rocky (Rockstar) & Dumpy (Dumpster)

We should be getting fast internet tonight! (YAY – we can watch NZ sport & TV online)

Our fire should be hooked up today & working tomorrow (ready for the power to go off again!)

Jon got his first police fine here –although he has been pulled up many times they normally can’t be bothered filling out the paper work and just want a quick bribe!

The single girls in our church are asking for all single guys to come here for a visit or to work (plumbers, electricians, mechanics, builders etc wanted!)

We hope that 2010 will be a year to remember and filled with many good memories and times of happiness and a good mood. (In typical Ukrainian tradition)

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