Wednesday, September 7, 2011

September Happenings!

CMF Summer School

The Stadalsky's and I headed to the Lake District in England for CMF Summer School! This is a week long training where medic leaders from all over the UK come and learn how to share the gospel with their classmates. We had a brilliant time...

Little did we know that God had prompted Kathryn, a medic from Dundee, to come to Summer School. We were excited that she decided to become the CMF student representative for Dundee! She has also become a good friend. These were two huge answers to prayer!

Yes, students in the UK like to play signs! I didn't even have to suggest playing this one.

We went on an awesome hike...that lasted over 4 hours! That was because we got a wee bit lost on our way back down the mountain.

It was well worth it for this view.
John Spencer in the beautiful heather.

There was an experiment being done to find out the volume of water a frisbee can hold... three bottles of water.

John Spencer wanted a lift on the way up. I was feeling pretty good at that point!

Ok, so folks across the pond like to play "the game." That is the game where everyone places the name of three people/characters in a box. You split into teams and the first round you have to describe the person in words. The second round, you use a charade. The third round you use one word. It was quite a good lesson in British culture and history.

I'm not sure whom I was trying to describe in this picture.

One of my new roles across the pond is help leading worship. I did this at summer school and have done some at church as well. It is very sweat provoking. But I enjoy it!

We drank a lot of tea and coffee! This is universal in the UK. On a normal day, I often have three to four cups! And I thought I had a dehydration problem in America!

Fresher's Week
We headed back to Dundee and the freshmen arrived! Kathryn, Scott and I manned a table at the students fair and were amazed at all the medics who showed interest in CMF. We then held a CMF dinner for the medics...13 freshers showed up and 7 older students.

Kathryn, Anna and I at the CMF fresher's dinner. Anna was gracious to host this dinner in her flat.

Students Into Our Home
It has been really fun to have students into our home. The food is a hit as well as the trampoline and the Wii! We had a wee bit of a Wii tournament the other night (sorry, I couldn't resist). I think Scott was singing the blues! Overall, it has been a great way to get to know the students. Catch a glimpse of some of those moments below...

Hanging out with the Family

Before school started for the kids, we went to the Discovery. The Discovery "was the last traditional wooden three-masted ship to be built in Britain. Designed for Antarctic research, she was launched in 1901." It was built in Dundee and is now appropriately housed in Dundee. If you come and visit me here in Dundee, we most likely will visit the Discovery! And I thought Chicago was the windy city!?!
I really love these kids! John Spencer and I could talk for hours about college football. Each week after the (Clemson) Tigers play, we read the play-by-play on the web. I just wish The Ohio State was doing as well! Sophia could play with my hair for hours! She informed me earlier today that tomorrow night we are having a "hair tester". I asked her what that meant, and she said that she is going to try different hair styles on me. I said that is perfect, for we are having a party tomorrow night (while Mom and Dad go out on a date) ... with quesadillas, a surprise dessert (which I don't even know what we are having yet...) and watching Chariot's of Fire. The kids (and I) are excited!

We also took the 20 minute drive to Glamis Castle. It was a great place to visit.

On a walk in the gardens, I asked the kids to stop and pose for a picture and this is what I got...

I said, "Come on guys, a real picture...why don't you smile!" ...and they proceeded to turn around. They are a riot!

First day of school! The kids had their backpacks on 1 hour before it was time to leave. They were just a wee bit excited!

I was teaching John Spencer about dentures. Will he one day become a dentist? Well, in actuality, Scott and Jennifer brought home some teeth candies and John Spencer was excited to try them out!

Sophia and John Spencer often come and hang out in my room. It is quite fun. Here is Sophia dancing around my room and taking advantage of my long mirror! They know the rules... no shoes on the bed, no wining and no arguing. Usually we end up laughing!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Spontaneous visit

The day after I heard the news about David, I was talking with Andrea and she said that she would come visit. I didn't realize at the time how refreshing and encouraging it would be to have a friend here for a wee bit. I was amazed that Andrea got such a great deal on a plane ticket so last minute, that she was able to get time off of work, and that the weather was so glorious! God surely provides above and beyond what we ask or imagine! So we took a road trip and had a brilliant time exploring some of Scotland. Yes, her visit was also an incentive to learn how to drive my car quite quickly. The first time I shifted into 5th gear was on my drive to pick her up in Edinburgh. I definitely learned how to handle my car on this trip... such as how to abruptly stop when sheep decide to stray onto the road! Here are some picks from our travels.

Here we are in St. Andrews!

This is the beach in St. Andrews where Chariot's of Fire was filmed. I love that movie. Just in case you didn't know, when I play frisbee I feel God's pleasure!

There have been over 2000 castles in Scotland, although many are known through historical records. So we stopped at a few on our journey!

And as you would imagine, there are beautiful gardens at every castle.

In the highlands!

We stopped off at Glen Nevis to hike to Steall Falls. "Glen" is the word used for a valley located in the highlands. Steall Falls is one of the three highest waterfalls in Scotland, where the Allt Coire a'Mhail joins the Water of Nevis.

Yes, this was a one-wire bridge. It was a wee bit scary!

I believe I should invest in some hiking boots! I was the only one I saw wearing sandals.

Isle of Skye

Due to my inexperience with a manual transmission, I was quite nervous when we started out on our road trip. And I often felt like this!

But by the end, I was much more relaxed and felt more like this!

Andrea had never been to London, so we traveled there to see (haha) the London Eye...

Big Ben...

and more!