YAYYY!

First and foremost, thanks for all the love and prayers that came my way after my last post.  I didn’t mean for it to sound like I was whiney or complaining, just real.  Thankfully, my toothache is gone for the time being, the weather is above 0 degrees, and my car is out of the snow and working again!

I am sending out my newsletter by snail mail this week! It has been a long time since I have sent one so I want to make sure that my address list is up to date. PLEASSEEEE email me with your current address to make sure you get this letter. It explains in more detail what I will be doing with 2016, who I will be working with, and pictures that haven’t been posted here!

Another amazing piece of news I am finally allowed to share this week is that RHCC is sending yet another High School team to me to come run a camp this summer! This is honestly one of the highlights of my year and I am already counting down til they arrive in July! They will be planning, preparing, and running a camp for homeless children, somewhere in Romania. On Tuesday, I am going on a major road trip with Mike and Dana to find a camp ground that is suitable!

More EXCITING news is that I am officially headed back to the South Bay for 5 weeks in March and April.  I am excited to speak at RHCC and see you all again, meet with people one on one to explain in detail about what is planned for 2016, and of course, be the Maid of Honor in my best friends wedding! It is going to be a busy 5 weeks but I am determined to see all my friends and family, and meet individually with supporters. Please email me if you would like to meet up!

As you can tell, this week has been far better than the start of January! I am looking forward to so many things this year in ministry, I know this is going to be my best year here and I am excited to continue to share this journey with you.

Hope everyone is well!

See you Californians SO SOON!!!

 

 

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The Last Two Weeks

Just a quick update on the last weeks of life here.  Its been one of the more “challenging” times.  Not really bad stuff. Just stuff that makes life a little more difficult. I always write such great stuff about living here, but it’s not always so perfect.  Let’s get real.

Sunday I woke up with the worst toothache I have ever experienced. I waited all week (apparently, this is not what you’re supposed to do) to see if it would disappear on its own.  After lots of pain medication, I finally found a dentist who told me I needed to get my wisdom teeth out. Not something I want to do alone in this country but it seems like I will have to.

My cat was neutered today.  There was lots of snowfall and it took 30 minutes to get a taxi driver who demanded I pay him 3x the amount it should have cost + a tip because I was an American? No.

Romanian vets just neuter your animal in front of you, which is not okay for any animal lover. They had me hold him while they gave him the shot of anesthesia and he passed out in my arms with his tongue out. Like I said, NOT OKAY! In America, you drop your cat off and don’t have to see any of that! I carried my cat home on the metro in a foot of snow in his cat carrier without a front gate on it. Thankfully he woke up from the anesthesia as soon as we got to our stop. Now I need to get my cat to the vet the next three days for antibiotics. In America, you just give your cat a pill at home. On the plus side, all of his shots and surgery cost a whopping $30.  Can’t beat that price.

Last week one of the mothers Hope Rescue Centre works with committed suicide.  She left behind three children and it is a horrible, heartbreaking situation. (Please pray for the children, they are in such a bad place right now emotionally and physically) The funeral is tomorrow and I just got the news I need to drive some of the family to the funeral.  I went out to check my car tonight and there is 3 feet of snow covering it all, the doors are iced closed, and there is no way I can get it to work before tomorrow.  It is -25 degrees tonight and the roads will be icy and I don’t have winter tires so I can’t drive anyways!

So tonight I thought I would blog, and relax and make a big cup of tea…… with salt instead of sugar.  My English family is cringing and the British government is trying to revoke my passport as I type this.

Someday, (hopefully soon) I will laugh about how dramatic I am over weather, minor health problems, and cat issues. Someday I will be thankful for getting to experience weather (I never did growing up, 70’s year round in LA!), be thankful I have minor health issues and not majors ones, and be thankful for having the sweetest cat to cuddle up to me watching The Office.

Despite all of this, Bucharest is so beautiful right now.

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My Park

 

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View From My Apartment

Where did December go?

No, but seriously. Where? I thought I hadn’t blogged in like a week, but apparently its almost been a month. Without going into too much detail, here is a brief description about my December. Refuge Center Christmas program with orphanage kids, an 8 person team from England, launch of Hope Rescue Centre, multiple Christmas parties for all of Hope Rescue Centre’s homeless communities, sarmale making til midnight,  Casa Ioana Christmas Party, getting my entire purse stolen, friend visiting for the month of December, sister visiting for a quick 72 hours, wrapping over 100 gifts, and trying to maintain somewhat of a social life to keep myself sane.

Despite the craziness, I can honestly say that December 2015 was my favorite month I have ever had here. EVAHHH! It was busy, it was exhausting but it was….. (I don’t like to say this ever but I am going to anyways…) so rewarding.  I don’t do this for the feeling I get from it, but after the year I have had, it felt really good to be happy and working with people who share the same passion as I do. We were all exhausted together, we were all sick together, but we had the best month together too, which makes all the craziness worth it.

One of the Christmas parties I did was with the new Refuge Center Ministry.  Costi and I have worked together for the past 2 years but have known each other for almost 4! His kids are the sweetest ( I was watching them a few days ago and I was complaining to the oldest Anna (7) about being alone during Christmas and I was jealous she was going to America to visit her family, and she looked at me and said “But you’re not alone…. you have us, we are your family!” and of course I cried because sometimes I just need to be reminded by 7 year olds that I am not alone here!)

Anyways, Costi, his wife Elizabeth, our friend Dan, and I started to brain storm about Christmas party ideas in October. One thing we all agreed on was that we wanted the focus of the party to be the true meaning of Christmas, and also the time we are spending with the children (the orphanage kids we have worked with for the last 2 years) It is so easy to buy things for the kids and have them be happy for the materialistic things and then leave. We want to spend time with these kids and enjoy a full day with them! Not that we didn’t buy them a gift, but we wanted that to take a backseat to everything else we did that day.

We planned a 3 hour Christmas Party for them.  All boys. Pizza. Games. Crafts. Cookie Decorating. Dancing. Etc. We had some wonderful local volunteers, my sister, and our staff help out and the kids loved it. Here are some pictures from the day.

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Cannot wait to start seeing these boys on a more regular basis!  It was so great to get people to help out who fell in love with these children immediately and are interested in working with us in the future.

Lots more posts coming soon soon soon! Check back so I don’t have to spam my Facebook for views!

BYE FROM BUCHA!

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