The Joyful 5

We are on a mission (see Matthew 28:19-20) So watch this space!

Monday, March 27, 2006

what a weekend...

I'm not sure how we managed it, but we are through the weekend!!!
Some of the busy-ness was self inflicted, but even so, it was continuous!

Saturday was a slow start for the girls, lie-ins for those that wanted it, quiet telly for the others...
Pete was up early as he was preaching on Sunday and still had to prepare.

I surfaced at about 9.30 and started on the usuals...cuppa tea, breakfast, cleaning the animals cages, washing up... later we went for a walk;
a) to get everyone out the house so Pete could study,
b) to get some sausages for lunch
c) to go to the bank to get some money to get some sausages for lunch; We had found a toad in the hole recipe and I agreed to do it... with Molly as my assistant.
Lunch done, Molly had a party in the afternoon @14.00, Carey & Elsie spent the afternoon at the park with the neighbours kids.
Pete studied for Sunday's sermon around periodic 'naps', he's tired 'coz he got up early!
I tidied the house as we have visitors tomorrow.

Collect Molly at 17.00. How's this, all the parents were invited to a drink and gateaux while waiting to collect their kids, it took 40 minutes to pick Molly up. An idea for the next party!!!
Fairly calm evening, prepared veg. etc. for tomorrow and more cleaning, tidying.

Sunday, not only do we get an hours less sleep, Pete has to be at church early to go through the sermon with his translator; set alarm for 08.00.
Dinner on, all fed, hair brushed... out the door by 09.05!!!

Home by 12.20, visitor due @ 12.30, put veg. on, do dessert... Naomi arrives; at 4 and a half, she is our youngest guest. She is dropped off to eat with us, She is Belgian but her parents want her to improve her English, so voilà.
At 15.00 she is picked up by her Dad along with Molly, and the 3 of them go to a kids concert in Lille.
Pete and the other 2 go at 16.00 to a North African concert in Roubaix, followed by church.

Once they are all out the door I rearrange the downstairs, the living room is now the dining room and visa-versa!!! Good chance to really spring clean...

2 hours later, at 18.00 Molly is returned, and the Dad comes in for a drink while the kids play a bit more, if they has been 20 minutes earlier, I still had a sideboard in the middle of the room!!! Fortunatly things were in place and fairly sorted.

Pete et-al returned at 20.30 to the re-vamped house... a total change, Elsie has found 1 item that wasn't moved, out of 2 rooms, that's not bad!!!
So; it was good to put my feet up for 10 minutes last night with a cuppa before retiring to bed.

Good job I did have that 10 minutes 'coz we hit the ground running this morning, I forgot to re set my alarm!
we got up at 08.00... By 08.15 everyone was dressed, hair done, shoes on, had a drink, had a pot of something to eat in the car, had school bags and were out the door...all that was left for them to do was wake up!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

My unbirthday...

On Thursday, still nursing a cold, we ventured forth for my unbirthday family celebrations.
Carey spent the day with a school friend, but this was ok, she was happy doing that. The rest of us went exploring deeper into Belgium.
We found our way into Tournai, just 20 minutes from us, but we managed something that is fast becoming a Joy tradition!!!
On the continent, it seems that all businesses cllose for lunch, from 12:00 'til 14:00!
One of the main purposes for going out as a family, was to have a meal out. We plodded round Tournai's main streets searching for a place to eat, we actually found a restaurant called 'Le Marmite', how cool is that? Bit too expensive though, sadly.
We plodded around for about 15 minutes, all this time it is trying to snow, Molly is crying she is cold and hungry; Elsie says she is fed-up just walking round and we all want to get out the freezing wind!
Finally we stumbled across a chinese restaurant; there was a set menu at a good price and it was open...before you could say chicken chow mein, we were in and sat down trying to defrost.

To summarise, we had a lovely day, we ate well, took piccies, found some open shops to browse round out of the wind, and we managed to find the car again, not bad for us! I was glad to get home again though for a hot cuppa!

I quite like unbirthday's, I think I will have another one...will check the diary!

Just to finish, you need to hear this, it's a true story...
Yesterday I had my 1st English class. 2 ladies from the choir want to learn, and I guess I was the favoured option to teach!
I started with the alphabet as so many sounds are different... a-apple, b-bed...p-pet...
'what is pet?' they asked, they looked confused, bemused...I'm not sure what that expression was! I did explain that a pet was a domestic animal, but as soon as I got home I looked it up in the French dictionary; Pet = FART!
ah! I understand the look now....
Have a good day
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Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Look what I found...

Our guinea-pig, Bubbles, has just popped!
She has had 5 darling piglets.
She birthed them all in 1 hour!!!!!!!!
They are now 3 hours old, have all had a cuddle from me and are doing well.
The dad, Dougal, is on the left and Bubbles is on the right, taken about 5 days ago, looking as though she was going to burst then! Her girth measured 18cm! She's usually such a petite piggy.
The babies are an assortment of colours and there are some rosettes there too.
They are gorgeous.
Got to go and have another look,
BYE Posted by Picasa

40 something...

You will be pleased to know, the cold is going...
Still some residual, but looks as though we are on for Thursday!

Thank you for your thoughts and wishes for my birthday, it's great to know there is a big family out there.

Robyn managed to find the most used present...a box of tissues,
Pete-the long term element...a game,
My family-the most girly-a gorgeous bunch of flowers (I can now smell the fressias!)
and Jo-the most Marmitey (not pictured...)
There was a significant purple theme in the cards and pressies, and Robyn managed to get pink into the bouquet!

So, from a 40 something in Belgium,
YMerci tout le monde, je suis heureuse que vous ^etes mes amis.Y

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Monday, March 13, 2006

40...and counting!

I got there!
Not quite what I expected... bit of an anti-climax actually, the whole day was taken up with appointments and things that the birthday element kind of got overlooked!

What did I do?

I was bought a cuppa tea in bed by the family, plus my presents. After that the rush starts and the nagging... get dressed now, eat your breakfast, find your shoes, do your hair...(directed at the kids, not me...) then off to church for 10:00. Some people knew it was my birthday, so I had a few 'bonne anniversaire's sent my way, which was nice.
After church I took the eldest, Carey, to a birthday party of a school friend, then returned to church where a meal was being prepared for the Christmas Choir, as a thank-you. Families were invited so it was a jolly (French) event, about 50+/- in total.
From there, at 5pm, we went and collected Carey, then headed straight to our French church meeting... unfortunatly no-one turned up, so we sat there for an hour before coming home again!!!
I had various texts and phone calls during the day from friends and family, but the whole event was spoilt a bit with the busy agenda (Not a good idea having a birthday on a Sunday), plus the fact that I have a stinking cold,a silly cough, my sinuses are making my face ache and I am not sleeping well 'coz I can't breathe!!!! I spent the day drugged up to the eyeballs with pain killers and anti-cold stuff, even the wine at the meal did nothing...
So, Sarah had the right idea, get away from it all and make the day special!
With this plan in mind, I'm going to have an unofficial birthday on Thursday and Friday (I figure I can have two days now I am 40)
The girls have a day off school on Thursday, as does Pete; so I hope to do something nice...A day out, a meal, a fun time, then on Friday I propose to veg. out at home and do nothing (hopefully I will be cold free then too)
Now I am going to have a cuppa tea and go back to bed!
tough life being 40 eh! :-)

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Amen to that...

I love the verse of the day thingy, todays is I can do everything through him who gives me strength.
Philippians 4:13 (NIV)

How great is that?
I can learn French because I know I am doing it for Him, with Him and through Him, He gives me my daily strength, Amen to that.

I am told that it is harder to learn something new after you are 40, so if you excuse me, I have 5 days to learn a new language!!!

At the moment I am still in my 30's and cherishing it, I filled out a questionaire yesterday, and it had a tick which age group you are in...20-29, 30-39, 40-49... yipeeeeeee I haven't gone up a box yet, if it had arrived next week I think it would have ended up in the bin instead of the post box!

Thought you might appreciate another French puzzle...

le seau = Bucket
Le sceau = Seal (as in ...of approval)

both are pronounced the same!!!! c'est bizarre non?

Have a great day, I'm off to study a seau load of French before the weekend before my brain is sceau ed off!!!

Sunday, March 05, 2006

That was the week that was...

I did it!
I managed to get to England and back again without losing any of the children!
The marmite stock at Tesco's has been reduced, and my worries of a life without the fragrant nectar have been averted :-)
It was a busy few days including visiting 3 churches, (in Luton, Ingatestone and Chelmsford) a trip to our mission H.Q. in Gerrards Cross, roller-blading in Hylands park...I didn't, I walked round after the kids with my Mum, visiting friends and family...
A highlight for me was meeting some fellow bloggers.
On Thursday it was lovely to meet up with Sarah for a hot chocolate, with cream! at Starbucks. It really felt as though I had known her for ages and we spent a happy time in the purple armchairs in the window! The kids got a bit bored and took themselves off shopping! Thanks Sarah for your encouragements, being 40 looks OK!
The journey home was fun... Pete rang to say that he had watched the weather forcast, and there was 80 m.p.h winds expected through the channel at the time of our voyage...Having requested many to pray, we were pleased with the milpond that the ship set sail on, the only meteorological thing we experienced was snow!
However, we were stranded in the middle of the channel for an hour as our ship was involved in a search and rescue operation, exciting stuff, another passenger ferry had reported a man overboard, so all other vessels in the shipping lanes were immediatly called to S&R... Turns out it was a false sighting, they think it was a seal...still a bit exciting!

So we are home now, with marmite, mission complete.
It was great to meet up with some of you and put face to blog:-) Must do it again sometime, here or there...