Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Snowed In

This week I was supposed to be in NYC with my mom and sisters, but unfortunately that isn’t the case. Christmas Day it started snowing around 8PM and continued to snow all night into the next day and night. We ended up with around 14 inches of snow and a canceled flight. We did actually go to the airport, and even boarded the plane, but it was snowing too hard for us to take off. My dad drove us to and from the airport that morning in the third worst snowstorm in history for our area. It was quite a mess, but we made it home and enjoyed watching the snow fall all day. Today we ventured outside to play in it for a little bit.

Addie loved running over top of Ashley and me as we made snow angels.
Addie was quite the pro at catching snow balls.
Ready to run through the fresh powdery snow

Friday, December 24, 2010

Top 10

2010 has flown by and I’m excited for what 2011 will bring. Last year I wrote about 10 things that “changed my life.” I thought this year I would make a list of five great memories from 2010, and five things that I am looking forward to in 2011.

5 Great Memories from 2010
~ Learning about a mission team in Uganda with World Harvest
~Completing my masters degree
~Being approved by World Harvest to be a missionary/teacher in Uganda
~Getting hired as a fourth grade teacher
~Making it through the first half of the school year as a teacher with my own class!

5 Things I’m looking forward to in 2011
~Finishing an entire school year as a teacher with my own class!
~Enjoying a summer with friends and family before moving away for 2 years
~Moving to Uganda
~Beginning a new school year with missionary kiddos in a little school in the jungle
~Being part of the World Harvest Uganda team

Thank you to those who are partnering with me as I go to Uganda. Without the financial support of dear friends and family I would not be able to go, and I’m so thankful for the sacrificial giving provided by so many. I have raised about 25% of my support. I would ask for you to pray that I would continue to trust the Lord to prepare me for the mission field, and that He will continue to bring in the support that is needed. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Monday, December 13, 2010


The last three days I was in Orlando catching up with many of my favorite people. Allison, my Orlando roommate and one of my BFFs, spent the weekend driving me everywhere and letting me do tons of things at the last minute with the most laid-back attitude. We had a great time buying a Christmas tree and decorating it, watching movies while drinking hot chocolate, and spending time catching up on life. Allison is such a caring friend and I don’t know what I would do without her! I’m excited that Allison is going to be coming to visit me in Uganda!

On Saturday I was able to meet up with one of my Uganda teammates, Josh, at a little southern restaurant in the small town of Wildwood Florida. It was fun to catch up, talk about Uganda, and enjoy some sweet tea on a sunny Florida afternoon. Josh is getting his PhD in Environmental Engineering and will be working to ensure there is clean water in Bundibugyo as the water runs underneath the road that is going to be paved in the near future.

On Saturday night I spent time with the Johnsons. This family is good for my heart. They are some of my favorite people in the world. Ande was my RUF minister while I lived in Orlando, and he and Kelly have two of the cutest and sweetest boys I’ve ever known. I love visiting with Ande and Kelly. They give the best advice, are so encouraging, and absolutely hilarious to top it off.

Sunday I went to my old church, UPC, and got to see some old friends after the service. Then Sunday evening I went to the Kinnaird’s home to share about Uganda with several families from my LIFE Group (Bible study) from UPC and old RUF friends. They asked tons of great questions and I loved telling them about the awesome things God is doing in Bundibugyo. It was also a joy to hear about the things happening in their lives as well. These families and friends were so supportive of me during my time in Orlando, and continue to be a huge blessing in my life. 

Monday I saw two more of the world’s greatest families, the Swains and the Noels. Scott and Leigh Swain took me on as one of their family members when I met them back in 2007, and are an amazing couple with four children who I wish I could spend tons of time with because they are a blast! Scott and Leigh have taught me so much and always give me the best advice. Scott is a professor at RTS, and he and Ande Johnson are my go to people for all theology questions. It was so great to see them and catch up for a couple of hours. 

The Noels were my last stop on the way to the airport. Jonathan (the music director from UPC) and Amanda are another dear family who I spent a lot of time with during my Orlando days. They have two kids who I used to babysit for all of the time and it is amazing how these two sweet kiddos have grown in the last couple of years since I moved away. This awesome family of four joined hands with me and all said a prayer for me as I prepare to go to Uganda. I can’t describe how precious it was to hear 3 year old Emmy, and 5 year old Gabriel pray for “blessings and safety as Miss Pam goes to Africa.” 

Thank you so much to everyone who came to see me or let me stop by your home. You all were, and always have been, such an encouragement to me and I’m so thankful for the little bit of time I was able to have with all of you this weekend. Love you guys!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

I’ve been thinking recently how it bothers me that I can’t share about Jesus with my students since I’m a public school teacher. This past weekend I was praying for my kids and praying that even though I can’t talk about my faith that I would find opportunities to show them the love of Christ. Well a few weeks ago I asked my grade level if they wanted to go to the play, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. They thought it sounded fun, so I arranged it, and I got copies of the book for us to read in class. As I have been reading the book to my class I have been pleasantly surprised about how much it explains about the Christmas story. It has scripture and everything. I have read the book before, but just forgot how great it was. What an answer to prayer that I am allowed to read this book to my kiddos. Tomorrow we are going to see the play and I’m hoping it will be close to the book and explain that Jesus came to be the Savior of the world!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Behold the Lamb of God

This past Thursday and Friday I went to a conference for work. While I was thankful for the opportunity to go and learn new things I came away from the conference questioning some things. First of all it seems to me that educators are always told all of the things that we are doing wrong, never well. We are constantly being told to fix this, change that, or do it another way. Besides that, I have been questioning what I am able to do and say as a public school teacher. I can pray for my kids, and love them, and teach them to the best of my ability, but I can never share about Jesus with them. This is hard for me. It is making me think about what I’ll do in a few years, once I return from Uganda.

Last night I was able to attend a concert in Richmond with my mama. The conference I was attending was in Williamsburg and another teacher had driven me there. So my mom picked me up in Williamsburg and we drove a little further north to Richmond for the Andrew Peterson, Behold the Lamb of God concert. I had the chance to go to this concert about three years ago when I was living in Orlando and absolutely loved it. This is a description of the Behold the Lamb of God concert from Andrew Peterson’s website.

“Named one of the 10 best albums of the decade, Behold the Lamb of God is a collection of songs about Jesus. Since 2000, Andrew Peterson and his friends have performed Behold the Lamb around the country, telling again and again this "true myth", as C.S. Lewis called it, this tale that's bigger than life, but is—astonishingly—true. The tour has become a yearly tradition not just for Andrew and the other artists on the tour, but for families and churches who attend the concert each season. The live concert, like the album, is a community effort, featuring singer/songwriters Jill Phillips, Andy Gullahorn, Ben Shive, Andrew Osenga and more, and over the years has featured artists such as Alison Krauss, Derek Webb, Sandra McCracken, Buddy Miller, Phil Keaggy, Sixpence None the Richer, David Wilcox, Pierce Pettis, Mindy Smith, Ron Block, Brandon Heath, Bebo Norman, Stuart Duncan, Eric Peters, and Randall Goodgame—all in the name of proclaiming the birth, death, and resurrection of Christ.” 

If you have the chance to catch this concert, they tour all over the country and I highly recommend you check it out. If nothing else, buy the album and I know you won’t be disappointed. I was excited to meet Andrew Peterson after the concert and had him autograph his children's book for Rwenzori Mission School. I’m excited to take it to Uganda to share with my future students.

Next weekend I’m going to be in Orlando. Some dear friends are hosting coffee nights on Saturday and Sunday so I can share more about Uganda. If you are in Orlando and would like to come please let me know and I’ll send you an invitation.