Tuesday, May 11, 2010

April Update

I'm surprised to find that May is almost half over already. This happened to me last month too! The months are just speeding by and I can hardly keep up!

I wanted to share a bit about what we've been doing. April wasn't nearly as busy for us as March was. Here are some of the highlights:

We enjoyed Easter with both families. It's nice that our families live so close to one another because we never really miss a holiday or other important events because of distance.

Jake finished up leading a Sunday night home group at church in Bellevue. We really enjoyed meeting with these folks and miss our time with them. We all attend the same church, but there's something about a small group that's just really nice.

We (finally) wrapped up the Awana program at Jake's home church with a Grand Prix. We were supposed to have the Grand Prix at the end of March, but there was a power outage at the church that night and we had to reschedule for mid-April. Anyway, it was amazing! We had so much good help from volunteers at church. The kids loved it too! This was my (Erin) first experience with a Grand Prix and I was amazed at how much of a big deal it is for the kiddos! What a great time! (So sorry that I don't have any pictures of the night. I forgot my camera.)

We were so happy to have some professional 'belly pictures' taken this month. We're so glad to have this part of our lives documented like this. (Especially since we're SO terrible with taking pictures!) Jake's cousin took the pictures and she did a great job!!

On the 17th, our church in Bellevue hosted an Indonesian dinner. About 90 people came out to eat an all-Indonesian dinner and then stayed after to listen to Jake speak about his trip that he had taken there earlier this year. We were very happy with the turn out and I think people learned a lot about the country.

We also finished up our childbirth classes in April. Now we're experts and TOTALLY ready to have this baby!! =) (haha! Okay, maybe that's a bit exaggerated...)

We were able to meet with a couple from NTM that does member care in our area as well. They kind of keep up on the NTM missionaries who live in this part of Michigan and are there for support and encouragement. They were traveling through and we met them for breakfast one morning. It sure was nice to meet them face to face and we had a nice time together.

Erin had her first of three baby showers at the end of April. Jake's home church put it on and it was such a nice shower. And boy, were we showered with gifts! Wow! We are still stunned at the generosity of people. I think that practically, we are just about ready for this baby to arrive!

Finally, the last Sunday of April was our last Sunday of teaching the high school Sunday school class at Bellevue. We sure will miss those kids a lot but we needed to step away in order to be available for speaking in other churches for our partnership development.

Thanks for reading our update. Hopefully next month we'll have some really big news to report! =) (And some pictures too!)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Belly Shot!

This picture was taken on April 16th. I was about 33 weeks pregnant. Jake's cousin, Kelly has a photography business and she needed a model for some belly shots. We were happy to help her out! We should be getting more pictures later on, but I wanted to post one so that you could see it. I think she does great work!

Monday, April 12, 2010

What have you been doing?

I can't believe it's already mid-April! This year is flying by so fast for us. Only about 7 weeks until our baby is due and we are so excited!!

March was a very busy month for us. I thought that I'd update you on some of the things that filled our calendar in case anyone is interested. =)

We started attending Childbirth Classes once a week in March and we will finish with them in April. We've learned some good things and had our eyes opened to some of the realities of giving birth. Yikes! =)

We were involved with our first missions conference at First Baptist Church of Sebewa. This was a great time for us. While we didn't speak at the conference, we were sort of highlighted as missionaries there (since FBC Sebewa is our sending church). We were very encouraged by the other missionaries who were there and shared about their ministries.

During the same weekend as the missions conference, we took a day to help out with Word of Life's Teens Involved. We served as judges for two different events. Jake judged preaching and Erin judged puppets. If you're not familiar with Teens Involved, it's a way to get teens involved in ministry. They work on a particular "thing" (like a sermon, a puppet show or a drama) and practice it over and over again. They then 'perform' it at Teens Involved where they are judged (by people like us) and given advice and encouragement on what they did. It's really a neat way to get teens to not only think about ministry, but a way to actually do it.

Speaking of kids, we continued to lead the kids program on Wednesday nights at Sebewa. We were supposed to end the program at the end of March, but actually we'll be ending this week (4/14). I'll write more about that in another update!

The last Sunday in March, we were able to present our ministry to the people at FBC Sebewa. Yes, this is our sending church and they do already know what we're about and what we're doing, but they were so gracious to let us use them as guinea pigs! So, we practiced our presentation to a live congregation in a real Sunday morning service! We'll make a few adjustments, but with that under our belts, we are (we think) ready to branch out to present this ministry to other churches.

Some of you may know that for the last 7 months or so, Erin has been babysitting for a friend of hers. Jennifer has twin boys who just turned two years old. At the end of March, Erin had to stop babysitting for the boys because of her big pregnant belly, lower energy level and an increased energy level of 2-year-old twin boys! =) She really enjoyed the time with them and watching them grow. She also learned some good tips on parenting. Thanks, Jen! =)

Erin continues to see the doctor every two weeks to check on her and the baby. Things continue to go well and we are so thankful! It's amazing that there hasn't been any sickness or complications or even too much discomfort so far with this pregnancy. We are truly thankful to the Lord for these things!! Pray with us that things will continue to go well. We're also praying for a safe, healthy and relatively quick delivery! =)

Thanks for taking the time to read our update. March sure was busy for us. April is looking a little more calm but we know that things won't stay that way for long!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Since the garden last summer, we haven't had much to write about! Okay, so maybe that's not true. Maybe we've just been neglecting our blog!

Things are going well here in Michigan and a lot has happened since our last update. Instead of writing about it all now, we'll update in segments.

Most of you probably know our biggest news and that is that we're expecting our first baby on June 3rd! We couldn't be happier and we're so excited to meet this little one! We were told that the baby is a girl and we're very happy about that too. In case you're wondering, we plan to keep the name a secret until she makes her appearance. Erin is feeling very well and hasn't had to deal with any sickness so far in this pregnancy for which she is VERY thankful! At almost 26 weeks she's feeling a lot of movement. Even the doctor has commented on how active our little girl is! =)

Well, that's the update for now. Hopefully we'll be a little more faithful in updating our blog in the weeks to come. Thanks for reading! =)

(This picture was taken on 2/10/10. About 24 weeks along.)

Monday, July 20, 2009

An important gardening lesson...

This is what happens when you don't check your garden every day this time of year! It's been about two or three days since we last checked the veggies so we went out this morning to see what we could see. Here's what we picked today:
23 cucumbers
13 potatoes
4 zucchini
4 jalapenos
2 kohlrabi
1 green pepper
a bunch of pea pods

We are very thankful, especially because the deer have been having a heyday with our corn, carrots and melon. Our green beans are ready to pick in the next day or so. We are concerned with one thing: we'll be gone for about 6 days next week. I think we need someone to pick for us while we're away!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


A long time ago, I posted that we were training for a 5k (3.1 miles) race in Grand Rapids. Well, I just realized that I never posted the results! =) We did actually run the 5/3 River Bank Run on May 9. Jake's brother, Jon and (his then fiance, now wife) Summer ran with us. We trained long and hard for it and had a great race. We both surprised ourselves with our finish times and we were very eager to run another race. Erin ran the race in 32:46 and Jake (with a bum knee) finished in 36:37.

It didn't take long for us to sign up for the Cheetah Chase at Binder Park Zoo in Battle Creek. We will be running this 5k on Saturday, June 27th. Our good friend Megan is running with us this time. We're hoping to beat our times from the last race, but we'll see what happens! Jake's knee is feeling much better so hopefully he'll be able to run this race pain-free! It should be a fun race and the surroundings will be much different than the last one. Our last race had about 4600 participants and we ran on the streets of downtown Grand Rapids with thousands of spectators. This race will have about 700 participants running through the zoo with lots of wildlife watching us! =)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Mystery of History

To be or not to be obedient!!

This week our mornings are busy volunteering for Vacation Bible School at my (Erin's) home church in Bellevue. This year's theme is The Mystery of History. We've been studying key stories in the Old Testament and the big question is always whether or not the main character will be obedient to the Lord. We are helping out with the 5th and 6th graders this year. Today was our third day and it's going well. We've had a steady amount of kids coming and they seem to be learning a lot. Some are even asking some tough questions which shows us that they're really thinking and paying attemtion!

If you think of it, please pray for us this week. We only have two days left and then a program on Sunday morning, but it's such a valuable time. Most of the kids in our class don't go to church so a lot of this teaching is new for them. Also, I think that most of what I learned about the Bible growing up was because of VBS. It's amazing how the things you learn as a child, one week out of the year, can stick with you for the rest of your life.

Our VBS is done by RBM Ministries every year.