Monday, January 30, 2012

Happy Birthday Sophie

7 years ago today our oldest daughter was born.  Today she is celebrating with her friends at school with doughnuts and games. She will come home for a lunch of crapes (as per her request), and later some present opening.  She does not know it yet, but she is getting a brand new shiny red 6-speed bike.

Happy birthday Sophie!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Snow Storm

I am told that this year Bulgaria is getting more snow then any winter in the past twenty years.  For the past two days it has been snowing almost non-stop.  I had a hard time driving Sophie to school today, but we made it.  I had an even harder time driving back up the hill to our house.

Things would not be so bad if there were two different factors at play.

First of all, the street cleaning crews are not getting the job done.  I have seen them at work, so I'm not going to blame them.  I don't exactly know where the blame lies, and I don't really care.  I would however really like to see the streets clean.  My guess is that there is just not enough equipment out there to keep up with the volume of snow falling.

We had this same problem in Minnesota in December 2010.  There was a massive snow storm.  One of the worst on record.  The plows could not clear the streets fast enough.  Were the plows of Minnesota in Sofia today, I think the roads would be in much better condition.  However the good folks at the Minnesota Department of Transportation probably have much better and much more equipment to deal with heavy snow falls.  Such equipment is not as necessary in Bulgaria.

Second there are a lot of inexperienced winter drivers.  The snow is coming down, but it is nothing that one might see in the mid-west U.S. in any given winter.  The problem is that folks around here are not used to adjusting their driving to accommodate the laws of physics as they relate to slushy roads.  I saw sedans trying to work their way up a steep hill covered in slush make the big mistake of stopping half way up.  I saw drivers driving at full speed and then wondering why they are fishtailing (yet not slowing down).

In about a half hour I head out again to pick Sophie up from school.  Then we are staying inside for the rest of the day.  Best to play it safe and pray for the snow to stop falling.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

One Year

One year ago today we arrived in Bulgaria to begin ReachGlobal's new ministry in Sofia.  It is hard to believe that it has only been a year.  So much has happened that it is hard to keep track.

It has been a great year.  God has truly blessed us as we started this ministry, but if you want to look back we have a years worth of blogs you can read.  I want to take this time to look forward.

There is much we want to in Bulgaria in the next years and we really don't want to do it alone.  Please pray that God would raise up teammates for us and continue to build effective partnerships.  Year one was only the beginning!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Permanent Residency!

It is official!  My permanent residency card has been printed, and I picked it up today.  I now have permission to live and work in Bulgaria indefinitely.  I still have to file change of address forms every time I move, and I need to fill out some paperwork every time my passport expires, but essentially, I’m good to go for the foreseeable future.

I now have all the rights and privileges of any Bulgarian (with the obvious exceptions of rights specifically reserved for citizens such as voting and running for public office).  It is good to be fully welcomed!

Thanks to all of you who, through your prayers and financial contributions, made this day possible.  We are going to go celebrate!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Getting Better

It looks like our girls are on the mend.  They still have quite a bad cough, but the fevers were gone today.  Sasha pointed out that she knows they are getting better because they were fighting.  Hopefully all will be well soon, though we have already decided to keep Sophie out of school for at least the rest of the week.  The virus that started this is nasty in and of itself.  We don't want to spread it.

Monday, January 9, 2012


Our two oldest girls have been diagnosed with pneumonia.  This is the most recent in a long line of illnesses that stretches back over the past 6 months.  About 80% of the last half year at least one person in the family has been sick.  This recent bout has been the worst.  All of us have caught this bug, but it only developed into pneumonia in the two big girls.  The doctor recommended hospitalizing the girls, but we declined for now.  However, if they have not made significant progress in their recovery by Wednesday, we will have to take them in.  Please pray that the antibiotics they are now on do the trick.  We want our healthy girls back.