Thursday, April 21, 2011

Another year has come and gone

My birthday was a few weeks ago. I'm not telling how old I am now. (Okay, probably because half the time I can't remember and have to stop and think about it.) It wasn't the best day ever- I think because I had high expectations of it, and when you have a pre-schooler and a toddler, you really can't have high expectations of anything. Or, at least, you shouldn't.

The day after my birthday was great, although why it was escapes me at this particular moment...

The day BEFORE my birthday, well... it was crazy. I spent the entire day in Seoul, with Elisha, getting my Korean driver's license. 8 trains, one bus, a billion flights of steps, some nice Koreans, and some amazing help from the ladies back at school, I returned home with my license in hand. Exhausted, grimy, and vowing to never climb another flight of steps again. (Hahaha.)

But, even though it was completely and totally nuts, everything went relatively smoothly, I didn't cry at all, and God was definitely in everything. For example: those of you who know my son know that he doesn't like strangers. Heck, half the time he doesn't like anyone who isn't one of his two parents. Anyway, he and I got the Korean driver's license place, jumped through ALL of their hoops, only to find out that he wouldn't be allowed to go into the testing room with me, and didn't I bring a baby-sitter? Ummmmm..... no.

So a very, very, very nice worker who spoke English, came up to watch him. I figured he would scream and scream the entire time I was gone, and be miserable, but there wasn't anything I could do. So the lady took him, and he fussed a bit, but they walked me to the room where the testing was, and then BAM, she produced a sucker for him and he forgot all about me. Not even kidding. I could hear him laughing with her and being all happy. I got done with the test and went back to down to find him playing happily and not caring that I had returned. I cannot tell you HOW thankful I was for that, and for the woman who took some of her lunch break to help me out. Totally God.

Bloomin Korea

Yeah... I could have said "Korea in Bloom." Meh. Boring. Or "Spring has Sprung!" Like that's never been used before.

These cherry blossom pictures were taken on the main road around the corner from us. They are SO pretty!!! The word ethereal comes to mind every time I see them.

I think those are one of my new favorite things. Wish they could stay around longer.

My friend Renee and her daughter Sadie went to the arboretum with us last week. Not as much was in bloom as I had hoped, but we did discover what is now my "dome of happiness."

Waterfalls, a stream, oodles and oodles of tropical plants. I thought I had died and gone to heaven. And then I realized my son was eating rocks and my daughter had run off and was nowhere to be seen.

Haha, I love self-timers on cameras. Yes, Elisha was trying to escape... to go play with the rocks. That boy is on the go ALL the time!

The kids and I went back over the weekend. It was still awesome. Wish I could live there.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Spring Break, thus far

Day 5 of Spring break is done, and thus far ALL 4 Kolbes have been healthy!! It's a record, I'm not even kidding.

It has been marvelous not only being healthy, but having Ryan home all day, every day. For starters, I don't get stuck with all the poopy diapers anymore. Also, I've been able to enjoy some amazing naps. I'm so glad God gave us the gift of sleep. I love it. We've been thoroughly enjoying doing lots of things as a family. Or, as Max puts it, "we are all together!!" Saturday we went to Suwon and picked up a book on sale, enjoyed a pretzel from Auntie Anne's and a packed lunch we had brought along. Sunday we enjoyed a lovely lunch with some new friends.

Monday we decided on the spur of the moment to hit Seoul. The first two places we attempted to go to were closed on Mondays. Go figure. So we went to the North Seoul Tower which is a huge landmark and a very popular destination here. We rode a glass elevator up a couple of floors, then rode a cable car to almost the top of the mountain. And walked up a bunch of stairs. Ooooohhhh stairs. That reminds me of another blog post I need to write. Anyway, we walked around, enjoyed the views, the fresh air, and the kids chased pigeons. They love pigeons. Partly because of the Mo Willems book "Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!" And partly because they walk around and are big enough to chase. Poor Elisha, though, he was having SO much fun chasing pigeons around, and then they FLEW away. He was SO upset, we felt so bad for him! It's hard being a toddler.

We don't have any pictures of that or most of this break as our camera's memory card decided that NOW would be a good time to fritz out on us. ARGH.

Tuesday we stayed closer to home and went to a really nice Arboretum 3 trains stops north of us. Again, the fresh air and sunshine were wonderful, as was being out with trees and bushes and flowers. All that outside time led to a 3 hour nap for the kids and me (Corrie)!

It has been nice to enjoy the outdoors as a family, and let the kids run around! (And around... and around... and around...)

Well done, good and faithful servant

A girl I know died recently. I didn't know her very well, but I knew of her fairly well. She died of ovarian cancer at a very young age. (30? 31? My mom would know.) It came on quite suddenly, and progressed rather quickly. She continued to teach art in a public school in North Carolina, loving on and ministering to children for as long as her body allowed her to.

She was an amazing witness for Christ to all she came into contact with. She lived her life for Christ, and she died a slow death for Him.

I was thinking the other day how certain I am of the fact that when she arrived in Heaven, and got to meet her Creator and Savior face to face He said "well done, good and faithful servant." I firmly believe that she was a good steward with what she had been given, and lived even the last few, painful months, for His glory, and to His honor.

Which makes me wonder... will I hear that phrase when I get to heaven? See, I don't think that just because you're a Christian, and you go to heaven, that you are automatically a good and faithful servant. While I realize that no one is perfect, some Christians run the race harder, with more focus.

It is easy to forget that just because we're saved doesn't mean we get to do nothing and watch our lives go by. Another verse that I like, and I think ties in here, is "To whom much is given, much will be required." We who are Christians have been given not only the gift of eternal life, but the mandate to share the news of that gift, to impact our world for Christ, and- dare I quote both Mark Driscoll and John Piper?- not waste our lives.

Pastor Mark Driscoll pointed out in a recent sermon that "worse than death is a wasted life."

Are you wasting your life? Am I? When you die, what will you hear? What will I hear?