Saturday, January 31, 2009

Midnight Meditations???

If the smell of smoke wasn't still in the room, I wouldn't have believed it. In all my years of life, I've never had it happen before! But it was very thoughtful of Pookie to come into our bedroom soon after midnight with a tiny cake and four candles to wish me Happy Birthday! As I tried to sort out la la land with reality, I heard "Happy Birthday to you" and realized that yes, this was really happening:). Once I sat up in my bed, sleepily rubbing my eyes, she said, "It's your birthday!"

So with this *event* kicking off my birthday, I change the year in my profile from
"25" to "26" and look forward to spending the day in house of the Lord! What better way to spend the day???

And then I have a tiny little cake to look forward to when we come home:).

Friday, January 30, 2009

Grace And Honor.

I'm slightly behind in posting this, but I think ya'll just might benefit from it! If you haven't already seen this on Abbi's, Jackie's, Katina's, or Rachel's blogs, then you'll see it here (finally!).

Check it out!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Border Run.

While we were in northern Thailand last week, we went across the border to renew my visa and Carolyn's visa. We both are in Thailand on one-year visas that need to get renewed every 90 days. In November, Pookie and I went to Cambodia; this time we entered Burma!

There is a bridge separating Thailand and Burma (there's also a river separating the two countries -so I'm sure you see why a bridge comes into play:D), so after getting the exit stamp, we walked across the bridge.

On the Thailand side, getting ready to cross the border.

We drive on the left side of the road in Thailand, but not so in Burma! This little sign is there to prevent directional confusional problems!

One of the first things I noticed is the lack of cars and trucks. I mean, there are some, but not like the overflowing abundance there is of motorcycles, bikes, rickshaws (the contraption pictured above - at least, that's what we called it!)

When we crossed the bridge, this "tour guide" showed up and offered to take us all over the town. We decided to go to the market and this man proved very helpful in bargaining. We would have been lost without his translating:).

Carolyn shelling out some baht.

Well, I suppose this proves we were there!

Walking back into Thailand... notice the car is not having any directional confusional problems:).

And that would be the bridge with Burma in the distance!

Pookie and I in front of the Moei River sign.

So now you all can say you've "been" to Burma! Unless of course you've actually been here and crossed this very border... then you can remember crossing the border yourself:).

Sunday, January 25, 2009

My Soul Is Anchored!

This day has been a very special day to me for 11 years. I am who I am today because of what happened on Sunday, January 25, 1998. The day I met Christ forever changed my life!

The testimony for my life can be found in the words of this song:

My soul in sad exile was out on life’s sea,
So burdened with sin and distressed,
Till I heard a sweet voice, saying,
“Make Me your choice”;
And I entered the “Haven of Rest”!

Refrain: I’ve anchored my soul in the “Haven of Rest,”
I’ll sail the wide seas no more;
The tempest may sweep over wild, stormy, deep,
In Jesus I’m safe evermore.

I yielded myself to His tender embrace,
In faith taking hold of the Word,
My fetters fell off, and I anchored my soul;
The “Haven of Rest” is my Lord.

The song of my soul, since the Lord made me whole,
Has been the old story so blest,
Of Jesus, who’ll save whosoever will have
A home in the “Haven of Rest.”

Oh, come to the Savior, He patiently waits
To save by His power divine;
Come, anchor your soul in the “Haven of Rest,”
And say, “My Beloved is mine.”

Friday, January 23, 2009

Mine Eye Affecteth My Heart.

One of the eye-openers for me on this trip was not planned, at least by us! Tuesday morning we were getting ready to leave the city we were in when Bro. Tom walked over to us and said we were going on an "adventure." That's putting it mildly:

I'm being vague about the location of this video on purpose, but suffice it to say that these people are so grateful to be living here in this garbage dump. They say it is much better than where they came from. It was a very humbling experience to see these people living here amidst the flies, trash, and disease.

Lamentations 3:51 ~ "Mine affecteth mine heart..."

A Title Eludes Me... Too Much Work!

Hello bloggy land.... I've missed you! I had great intentions to let you know I was leaving on a trip, but I never got around to that... or anything else that I was *supposed* to do! Oh wait, I did get out of bed last Saturday morning, which was a plus, and I even made it to the van with a packed suitcase! *Bonus points for me!*

We had a super-great, super-great trip to northern Thailand (do those words super-great bring back any memories for you former EBAers???) and we pulled in Thursday evening after a very full trip, including going to a new country! But I'll have to share in another post:).

I was fondly (*ahem*) thinking of those good 'ole Pennsylvania roads as we bounced our way down this Thai road... I-78 anyone???

More to come later! But for now, I'm home bloggy land... I'm home!

A Precious Promise.

All the way my Savior leads me,
What have I to ask beside?
Can I doubt His tender mercy,
Who through life has been my Guide?
Heav’nly peace, divinest comfort,
Here by faith in Him to dwell!
For I know, whate’er befall me,
Jesus doeth all things well;
For I know, whate’er befall me,
Jesus doeth all things well.

All the way my Savior leads me,
Cheers each winding path I tread,
Gives me grace for every trial,
Feeds me with the living Bread.
Though my weary steps may falter
And my soul athirst may be,
Gushing from the Rock before me,
Lo! A spring of joy I see;
Gushing from the Rock before me,
Lo! A spring of joy I see.

All the way my Savior leads me,
Oh, the fullness of His love!
Perfect rest to me is promised
In my Father’s house above.
When my spirit, clothed immortal,
Wings its flight to realms of day
This my song through endless ages:
Jesus led me all the way;
This my song through endless ages:
Jesus led me all the way.

Friday, January 16, 2009

24 Thoughts For Today.

I got this in an e-mail from Ben and Nina's mom and thought it had some good points!


1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate anti-depressant.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Buy a lock if you have to.

3. When you wake up in the morning, complete the following statement: "My purpose is to __________ today."

4. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.

5. Drink green tea and plenty of water. Eat blueberries, wild Alaskan salmon, broccoli, and almonds.

6. Try to make at least three people smile each day.

7. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.

8. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a college kid with a maxed out charge card.

9. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

10. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

11. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does. (Love this one!!!!)

12. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

13. Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.

14. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

15. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.

16. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: "In five years, will this matter?"

17. Forgive everyone for everything.

18. What other people think of you is none of your business.

19. GOD heals everything.

20. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

21. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.

22. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

23. Each night before you go to bed complete the following statements: "I am thankful for __________. Today I accomplished _________."

24. Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed. (For sure!)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Good-Bye Thai Style!

Nothing says "Good-bye Thailand!" like stomping on a rat the night before a person leaves for the good 'ole US of A.

Yes, Alex actually used his flip-flops to step on this guy and then bashed him with a brick for good measure.


Sunday, January 11, 2009

No Snow, But....

... it is a bit nippy out there!

I just checked the weather and the report said it was 59 degrees here in Bangkok. As Theresa and I walked this morning (we both had sweaters on), she commented that this is the coldest it has ever been in her four years in Thailand.

I'm not complaining, mind you. Throughout the day it will warm up to the mid-80s. But it sure is nice to snuggle under the covers at night!

Ya'll enjoy your 26 degree weather in Pennsylvania, you hear?!?


Friday, January 9, 2009

Exceeding Expectations One Blog Post At A Time.

Melissa (aka Missy from our high school days) tagged me for this and at the very end she wrote:

"I fully expect no one to do it. Exceed my expectations, people!!! :) :) "

Isn't it so nice that I can exceed her expectations??? I've feel like I've accomplished something!

So here are the rules to this little tag:

1. Choose the 4th folder where you store pictures on your computer.
2. Select the 4th picture in the folder.
3. Explain the picture.
4. Tag four people to do the same.
5. No cheating (cropping, editing, etc.)

This is kind of a random picture, but I think that's the point! Deborah and her husband had just arrived in Thailand and we were driving back from Sunday morning church services. Lest you think she always has a goofy grin on her face, I'll put your fears to rest and clue you in. She was sitting next to an inquisitive 18 month old girl who had pulled her hair clip out of her hair (the little girl, not Deborah:D). So there's the fourth picture from the fourth folder. Fascinating, I know:).

Now it's my turn to tag:

The girl who just got a gazillion books (ok, so it was really only 50)

The mommy of two incredibly cute kids - Joey and Katie

The "lesson on the eyeball" lady

The girl whose house is being worked on by my brothers

Impress me girls! It's your turn to exceed my expectations:) (Don't worry; I've set them very, very low!)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

To Sleep Or Not To Sleep. That Is The Question.

If you should happen by our blue/pink house between the hours of midnight and 2 AM, prepare yourself. Someone is probably walking or talking - in their sleep.

Two nights ago was one of "those" nights. While I try to be in bed by 10 PM (with tonight being a rare exception since I can't sleep.... gotta love irony!), Pookie doesn't normally make it to bed until after midnight. On this particular night, I was sleeping when Pookie came in. Normally she doesn't wake me up (that's always a plus since I'm not, ahem, at my best when aroused out of a deep sleep!), but this time she unintentionally woke me up. Or rather, her laptop did. Here Pookie was under her covers with her computer on, trying not to wake me up. As you can see, that plan worked out rather well;).

But wait! It gets better!

For Christmas, the girls from my church office sent over a box chock full of items, including Christmas cards. One card in particular plays into this little drama. It was a musical card that proclaimed, "It's the most wonderful time of the year!!!!!!!!!!" You might think those exclamation points are a bit of an exaggeration, but I assure you they are not. Yes, for some reason, this card starts off at 1 AM singing, "It's the most wonderful time of the yeeeeeeeeear!!!!!!!!!!"

Christmas might be the most wonderful time of the year, but I can guarantee you 1 AM is NOT.

We both ignored the song, and before too long, it stopped. Just as I was about to step back into the land of sleep, I heard, "It's the most wonderful time of the yeeeeeeeeear!!!!!!!!!! Ding, dong, Ding! Dong!" Now keep in mind we were both tucked away in our beds. We have no idea how the card started playing; it just did. I hopped out of bed and rather forcefully shut the card. I contemplated throwing it out in the hallway, but that would require being fully awake to perform that function, which I was not. (Have I mentioned how delightful I am when I'm aroused from sleep?!? :D)

I have no idea what time this next incident occurred; all I remember hearing Pookie say is, "Anne! You're talking!" To which I replied, "All I said was blah, blah, blah." By the time I got to the part about what I said, I was already drifting back to sleepy land, so I really have no idea what I actually said.

5:45 my alarm went off - it's a lady with a British accent saying, "The time is 5:45 AM. It's time to get up." - and I always tell my phone to be quiet for pity's sake: Pookie is sleeping! And I'm normally still sleeping myself when this conversation with the phone takes place, hence the reason I'm talking to a phone!

Theresa Lange and I try to walk every morning, but that morning my eye was burning like crazy, to the point I was crying out of one eye (which is very weird, I assure you!). So instead of walking, I decided to go back to bed, hoping that closing my eyes would help. As I crawled into my bed, I had some sounds coming from Pookie's bed. Knowing that I cannot fall back to sleep with background "music" serenading me, I said, "Pookie! You're snoring!" To which she replied, "Oh. Sorry." I eventually drifted back to sleep before Miss British lady woke me up at 7:30.

In telling the story to Carolyn the next day, Carolyn was (and is!) very thankful she is in a room all by herself. Can you imagine if there were three of us in a room? Let's just say ear plugs and eye masks would be passed out at the door:).

Monday, January 5, 2009

Team '08.

Saturday we had a little photo shoot (translation = we were bored!), so I thought I would share a couple of pictures from that fun time. Laughter and smiles were plenteous!

Krinny, Carolyn, Pookie, and I. It was always funny to watch Pookie put the camera on the timer and then dive into place - just in time to smile!

Just as the camera was ready to flash, Krinny made the statement, "This is the height of vanity. We're taking pictures of ourselves." As you can see, Pookie and I enjoyed her comment:).

Alex, Carolyn, Krinny, Tom, Pookie, and I. Alex is leaving next Monday after being here for three months.

So, there you have it... Gaudet Team '08!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

The Cheesecake Side Of Thailand.

Pookie's parents came down on Saturday, bringing with them some delicious Thai food! Apparently Pi Ba (Pook's mom) kept all the foreigners quite satisfied with her cooking, but alas, she moved two hours away from here about a month before I came in 2007. Rats. I always miss out on the good stuff.

Pookie and her mom:)

So we all jumped at the opportunity to enjoy some honest-to-goodness Thai food, toned down to fit the farang taste buds! It was so delicious! After we were done, Carolyn said, "Now I could go for some chocolate cheesecake." Well, that sealed the deal for us so we hopped on a songtaw - a pickup truck - and went to the mall.

Forty-five minutes later and we were happily at home, munching on our pieces of cheesecake. This afternoon I went to go throw away the box it came in when I glanced at the writing on the side. I am not making any of this up! For your reading pleasure, I give you the top three tips from the Secret Recipe store:

*Store the cake in the fridge immediately for freshness. (Immediately, ya'll, immediately!)

*While carrying the whole cake box, hold the bag with one hand and support the bottom of the cake box. (What do you do if you have to open a door???)

*When on board a vehicle, please lay the whole cake box on the car floor or to hand carry it on the lap to prevent the cake from slanting. (Notice "a vehicle" translates into "car.")

Wow. Can't say I've ever been instructed in the ways of carrying a baked good before. But at least they said please:).

Saturday, January 3, 2009

What John Newton Remembered.

I've just finished reading a great book called, "Incredible Journey in the Steps of Greatness" by James Ray. This book documents the lives of several Christians down through the centuries. I came to the story of John Newton - the author of the hymn Amazing Grace - and stopped when I read some of his last words:

"My memory is nearly gone; but I remember two things; that I am a great sinner, and that Christ is a great Saviour."

The truth of those words hold much weight. I am a great sinner, but praise the Lord HE is a great Saviour! I don't always know why Christ reached down in His great love and took me out of the miry clay, but I am so, so thankful that He did.

Me? A great sinner.

Christ? My great Saviour!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Taxi Drivers and Blonde Passengers.

When one is in a foreign country and speaks very little of that country's language, it is always helpful to communicate with body language to the taxi driver where one lives - before he speeds past said person's house and continues down the street.

This is all hypothetically speaking, of course:).