Saturday, December 23, 2006

Merry Christmas!

I wanted to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas. We're in Cleveland celebrating with my family. I'm glad to have a few days away from work to relax with family.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Well I thought this was going to be a brief post...

Well I'll break the silence with a brief posting. I met a friend of mine today at Panera. He was in from Texas for the weekend. It was good to see Nick and catch up a bit. I really feel out of the loop as I saw so many friends having pages on My Space. I am not motivated enough to get my own page, however I think everyone I know is on there. I had thoughts of really bad things going on the site, however I have now seen there are good things on the site too. I'm satisfied with my blog (not completely, I need to learn more about webpage design) and don't need a my space now.

I can't believe Friday is December. Where did 2006 go? It has been a good year though definitely with difficulties too. In today's sermon at church our pastor discussed the good that can come from trials. He was talking about Naomi from the book of Ruth. When she and Ruth arrived in Bethlehem everyone was happy to see her. As they expressed their joy to see Naomi, she in her despair and bitterness said do not call me Naomi but call me Mara. Mara means bitter. The challenge I receive from this passage is we will all go through difficult times, but how will we respond to them. God wants to use the hard times in our lives for His glory, but will we let Him do this? If Naomi would not have been bitter with Moab and returned to Bethlehem, then Ruth would not have met Boaz and that would have stopped the line of births leading to Jesus Himself. It is exciting to see how God uses trials, though it doesn't always help us at the time.

I have been in a funk today and I can't completely explain why. We are in the process of joining a church here in town. I am glad we have a found a church and I really like this church. The church is a good fit for us and will also be a challenge to us too. Part of me feels I should be more excited that we are joining this church though I am not. I can't help but thinking these negative thoughts I have had today are attacks from Satan. I desire to be sensitive to his schemes though I am not successful 100% of the time. I am reminded each day in one way or another that I need God's help to get through each day. God does not want to live life on my own and He does not enable me to either.

Well I think that is enough ranting for now. Thank you for listening. Have a great night!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Birthday Events

This blog entry is long overdue. I have to catch everyone up on the events of the past couple evenings for Becca and I. On Wednesday night we went out to dinner at Red Robin with our burger club coupons we received for our birthday. The coupon says only one coupon can be used per table, but since we have the same birthday we wanted to be able to use both coupons for our dinner. We asked our server if we could use both coupons and she said…YES! So this is a glowing endorsement for Red Robin. Join their burger club on their website and make sure to go there for dinner sometime soon.

Yesterday was Becca’s and my birthday. I am still shocked sometimes that we share a birthday because of how rare that is. I planned a surprise party for Becca and invited some friends of ours to our home to celebrate the special occasion. I have been working on this party for at least a week now and had so much doing it. Becca and I talked the whole rest of the night after the party (it seemed) about all the fun details I worked with in planning the party. We went out to dinner at the Olive Garden. This was the 2nd night in a row we went out to dinner and we did decide that we need to wait awhile before going out again. We had a very nice server and the food did not disappoint either. I really do enjoy celebrating my birthday with Becca. After dinner we went home and the surprise party started. Some friends were already there, others arrived later on. I arranged for some friends to call in during the party as they could not attend in person. Some people brought gifts, other just came. I really enjoyed the party and was glad to celebrate our birthday. Next year is 30 for me so I better be on guard.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Please pray for Pastor Haggard and his family...

It made me sad to read about the accusations made to Pastor Haggard in Colorado. I don’t know how big of a story this is, however it could become a big story in a hurry whether the accusations or not. Some are saying the accusations are politically motivated with a marriage amendment on the ballot in Colorado this coming week. Pastor Haggard has resigned his duties at his church. The interim pastor of the church is saying there has been some admission of guilt by Pastor Haggard. My prayer is for Pastor Haggard and his family that God Himself would give them the grace and strength they need to get through these hard days. I have no idea if these accusations are true, but I know the family needs prayer. The media will be all over them along with an unforgiving public. Please pray for Pastor Haggard and his family.


Tuesday, October 31, 2006


I am very excited to share how my company is celebrating Halloween (not that I really like the holiday, but it does show how much fun we have around here). We just had a costume contest. Now we are feasting upon Robinette's cider, donuts and caramel apples. Later on we will have pumpkin bowling. And yes we will also be doing work around here too. Have a great day!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Just finished a book...

I just finished reading Dispatches From the Edge: A Memoir of War, Disasters and Survival by Anderson Cooper. For my generation, he is remembered as a correspondent on Channel One News and now has his own program on CNN called Anderson Cooper 360°. The book was interesting (though not the best written book I've read lately). In the book Anderson is recounting his experiences in Sarajevo, Sri Lanka, Somalia and New Orleans while covering world events for Channel One and CNN. I did find it interesting how these experiences caused him to reflect on events in his own life. There is the tendency to comparmentalize life and not let certain events at work effect your personal life. Anderson realized while writing book that it is helpful to work through things like this as they come up. The book also shows me how busy a life Anderson has and how grateful I am that I can come home at the end of the day and leave work behind (even if I have to work an extra hour). I know I have the tendency to covet things I don't have sometimes and books like this make me grateful for what the Lord has given us. My job is to be content. This is a day to day battle. Some days are certainly better than others.

Monday, October 16, 2006

New Furniture

My parents are in the process of downsizing, so Becca are inheriting some furniture from them. This is a win-win situation for everyone because my parents are rid of it and Becca and I can certainly use it. We also don't mind the price for the furniture either :) My dad came up on Friday with a friend of his and delivered a piano, a futon, and a set of drawers with a hutch top. The piano was the one I used to learn on so it is nice to have it in our home. A friend of mine tunes piano for a reasonable price so I'll have him out soon to have that done. I look forward to playing the piano again. I have missed it.

Also, exciting news on another front, last week the proposal for the community center at Becca's employment was granted final approval. This has been a long time coming and I'm very excited for Becca. She has put a lot of work into this and I'm proud of the work she has done. You can read more about the community center here.

That's my story for now. Have a great day!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Happy Columbus Day!

Had a fun weekend and now that we can breathe from all the activity, I’ll catch you all up on what we were up to. Friday night was the start to Alumni Family Weekend (aka Homecoming) at Cornerstone. Imagine my surprise when 1,600 alumni show up for a free concert. J The concert featured Big Daddy Weave and Mark Schultz. It was a really good concert. It was also nice to see some people that Becca and I had not seen in a while.

Saturday morning we went to a local fruit farm to get apples and pumpkins. We had a good time. I hope to do this again sometime where we pick the apples from the trees. I really do think the apples taste better if you get them from the farm rather than a store. We’ll have to see I guess. Saturday night our small group started again. We’re excited to start another year with our group. We are not attending the same church as the rest of the group, but we are able to stay in this group. We are both grateful that we can do that. We will be starting a study in Daniel this Friday when we meet again. I have never really studied this book so I’m looking forward to the study.

Sunday morning was church. We have been attending City Hope Ministries the last few weeks. We really like the church. It was nice to have a couple near our age reach out to us yesterday and get to know us better. We really didn’t experience that at our former church. We’ll have to see if this church is where God wants us to be, or if we need to keep looking.

Sunday afternoon was a birthday party for a 2nd year old. His parents are in our small group. It was a beautiful day for a party and we were able to spend some time with friends from our small group. However there was no rest for the weary J as we had people over to our home last night. Becca made enchiladas and I did some cleaning around the house. They brought a chocolate cake with them that had about an inch of frosting on the top. Just a little rich I’d say.

Well that was our weekend. Definitely a busy one, but we enjoyed ourselves.


Wednesday, September 13, 2006

YEAH my car is fixed

We took my car to the repair shop this morning to get the muffler bracket fixed. I called three businesses in town and this one had the best customer service and seemed to know what they were doing. They found an after market muffler bracket and have installed it. They also say the muffler and rest of the exhaust system are in good shape and do not need to be replaced. This is exciting! I will be glad to have my car back in working order and we will both be glad that it was not very expensive.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Happy Monday!

Happy Monday everyone! It's a bit rainy here in GR; hopefully nicer where you are. We were in Cleveland for the weekend visiting my family. Saw my sister's apartment. Lots bigger than I thought. Check out Mel's blog from the list on the left and encourage her to post :)

Now that we are done with house improvements for now, I am working on car improvements. The muffler bracket for my car is broken. I hope the muffler is sturdy but we'll have to see. I'm going to call a few businesses in town today in hopes they can install a new one for a good price. A friend of mine looked over my exhaust system last week and thinks the muffler itself is in good condition. This was good news. I hope I can get this replaced inexpensively.

Other than this nothing too exciting going on with us.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Prayer Request

Please pray for our friends Ked & Amelia in Florida. They aer going through a difficult time of uncertainty. Read her post here and please PLEASE pray for them.


It is never too late to start doing
what is right.
I heard this statement during a podcast of Insight For Living. Chuck Swindoll has been greatly enabled by God to preach the Gospel and the Scriptures to many people around the world. I completely agree with this statement and thought I would share it with you to encourage you today. Hope you have a great day!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Electrical outlets

My question for today is why would people paint over electrical outlets? When we recently painted our living room one of the first things we did was to tape around the edges so the outlets wouldn't get covered. I am certainly not an expert in home repair, but this is one of the things that I know.

Today was a busy day. My in-laws came over and helped us with putting in new floorboards and new outlets. Some of the outlets had been painted over, some just needed replacing. Our living room looks so nice. I look forward to sharing the room with friends and family when they come over to see us.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Update on home improvement

Well we are definitely making progress now on the home improvements. Our windows are up and they are nice. It is such a wonderful thing to have windows with screens you can open at night so we can turn off the air conditioning. Also the slider being fixed is nice too. I can't wait to get our next electric bill to see how much we will be saving. The windows are block a lot of noise from outside.
This morning the carpet was installed in our living room. The installers arrived around 6:40 this morning and were done by 7:30. These guys really knew what they are doing. Tomorrow my in-laws are coming to help us. We'll put the new floorboards down, hang the new curtain for the slider and put some new outlets in. The previous owners painted over a few outlets. I really don't know why you would do that.
Have a great Friday!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Home Improvements

Well home improvement is definitely happening in our home today. We are having new windows installed in the guest room and our bedroom. Also, the window installer is able to fix our sliding door. There is an expression out there "Measure twice, cut once." Well let's just say those who installed the slider originally probably measured once and cut a few times. As of now the front window is installed and the window in our bedroom is being worked on. My dad came up to be in our house for the day so the installer could get the work done. We are both very glad Dad come up to help us. I don't think we would have been able to get this done otherwise. Friday the carpet will be installed and the living room will be successfully unrecognizable :) I am excited we are getting this work done. I hope you're having a great day! tmsaisti (I'll try to get some after pictures posted in a few days so you can see the exciting improvements.)

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Laundry Love

This is the title of today's meditation in the Our Daily Bread. I have been challenged a lot over the past days and weeks with my attitude at work. My work can be stressful at times, but I need to have a good attitude and I do want to demonstrate this. God has provided this job and I want to serve Him where He has placed me. The meditation from the ODB talked about a university student who worked in a residential treatment center. When the teenagers at the center received new clothing from their parents, this man offered to wash the clothing separately. The word of this kindness spread quickly throughout the center and soon he was doing a lot of special laundry. This special laundry was a great act of love and kindness. This challenged me because I should want to do the same for anyone I meet, whether I really like them or not. As I read this article I was reminded of customers at work I find annoying or people at our church that we do not agree with. I John 3:18 says we are to love in deed and truth, not in word and in tongue. I don't think that means I should say loving words, but the act of love should go far beyond my words and proceed to actions. What a powerful witness it would be if we showed love regardless of what someone has done and leave the judging to God Himself.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

The Enemy is definitely still on the job...

I have been convinced for a long time that the Enemy is still at work, but this reality has been driven home to us today. The church we are attending had a no confidence vote today for the current pastor (who is a very good friend of ours). The vote ended up being 13 having no confidence and 3 having confidence. I can't say the pastor is perfect; no one is perfect except Jesus Himself. I also can't say he hasn't done anything wrong because I am sure he has at some point, but what I can say with certainly is, I believe the vision he has for the church is from God and the reasons for no confidence in him are from Satan himself. I could say the unfavorable people are just against change, but I don't think that accurately covers the scope of what is happening. Spiritual warfare is being waged and we must stand up and fight. I am thankful the pastor of the church wants to continue to fight amidst must opposition. Please pray for him and his family. Also, please let this story and others which could be told serve as a reminder "...Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (I Peter 5:8).

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Some pictures from Alaska...enjoy

our home away from home - the m.s. oosterdam

We're back

What an amazing week we had last week on the cruise! I honestly think I need to go on a diet because of so much food that we ate. The scenery in Alaska and British Columbia was beautiful. We had a great time with my parents and sister. We had so many adventures once we were off the boat getting to the hotel. The customer service was amazing on the boat, however once we got off the boat, things did go down hill. I don't want to sound ungrateful because we really did enjoy the vacation. I'll just say things were more interesting once we left the boat.
I'll be sharing more stories and hopefully pictures in the days and weeks to come. Hope you're having a great day

Thursday, July 06, 2006

The vacation starts tomorrow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Well tomorrow is the long awaited day Becca and I go on vacation. Our day will start very early in the morning when we get in the taxi at 4:30! L Our flight leaves Grand Rapids at 6 and we’ll be in Seattle by 10:30. I’m excited we have some time to explore Seattle before my parents and sister arrive. We’ll get on the boat on Saturday and the cruise begins! We’ll take lots of pictures and hopefully we’ll be able to share some of them with you when we return. See you in 10 days!

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy 4th of July

Hope everyone in the US enjoys the day today. Hope my friends around the world have a good day too. We are very excited with the trip to Alaska coming up on Friday. It is exciting to look at the weather and the sites around Seattle and other cities will be visiting. We had a scare yesterday as some of flights were changed without the airline letting us know. My plan is to call the airline everyday (except today) to see if anything changes. It is sad I cannot trust the airline to give me the information but I'm over it.
That's my story for now. Nothing too exciting around here. What are you up to today?

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

9 days!!!!!

I was reading a magazine today during lunch and learned how Seattle’s Best Coffee received its name. Many years ago (the number 35 comes to mind) there was a competition amongst coffee companies in Seattle to see who had the best coffee. At that time, this company’s coffee was rated #1 so they changed their name to Seattle’s Best Coffee. They had done their best to maintain this reputation ever since. Perhaps I should find their coffee instead of one of their competitors. Who knows?! J


Friday, June 23, 2006

2 weeks and counting!!!!!!!!!!!!

2 weeks from today we will be on vacation in Alaska on our cruise. I am really looking forward to our time away together. I must say the 1st thing on my list once we arrive in Seattle is to find a latte stand and find coffee. Seattle is a coffee lover’s “Mecca” and I must take advantage of this. Hope you are having a great day! Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Back From the "Dead"

A friend of mine strongly suggested that I post something on my blog so here I am. I can post by email so that is helpful. Many things have been going on in our lives the past few months. It would take a really long time to catch you up on so we can start again from where we are now. The exciting news is we are waiting for our cruise vacation in July. We’re headed to Alaska with my parents and sister. We’ll be there for a week and it should be very nice! Everyone is telling me it is a very beautiful time of year to go to Alaska. If you have been there, please feel free to comment about your experiences there. More later…


Monday, March 06, 2006

Lent update and weekend

I think I've decided what I'm going to "give up" in observance of Lent. I must warn you this is not a traditional item given up for Lent. I've decided that I will stop biting my finger nails. This is something I need to do anyway, however "giving it up" for lent is a good short term goal. Feel free to ask me about this from time to time.

We were in Cleveland this weekend visiting my parents. Spent some time with Mark & Margie on Saturday night. The restaurant where we ate was horrible. I will not put their name on here but I will say we waited close to 10 minutes to be seated and more than 40 minutes for our food (Part of the food we waited on was appetizers that should have been served right away). Suffice it to say, our waitress received about $2 in tips between our two bills which were about $40. I know the waiters and waitresses out there are going to say that they need tips to make a decent hourly wage. I agree with this, however I think tips should be earned and not given (like a lot of things).

Well I better get back to work...


Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Lent - What Should I Give Up?

Lent officially starts tomorrow and I'm looking for your input. I have never really observed lent, but I have been thinking about it the past couple of days and I think there are some merits to it. I think sometimes we focus on the celebration part of Easter but miss the preparation part. Lent is that preparation.

One popular part of Lent is giving something up. I don't think I'm going to come anywhere close to sacrificing like Jesus did, but I think giving something up is a good idea. Becca and I talked about this tonight. She is probably going to give up sweets and chocolate. I'm not sure what I'm going to give up. I do not want to give up coffee. I am drinking less each day, but I do not want to give it up altogether. This is where you all come in. Please send me some comments with what you think would be something good to give up. I look forward to reading your feedback.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

HELP...I'm trying to sell my PDA

Hello worldwide friends...I need your help. Here is a link to an eBay auction where I am trying to sell my PDA. This is really a good deal. (Yes, I know this is shameless promotion, but work with me.) If you add up the retail value of everything I am selling, it would be more than twice what I am asking for. If you or someone you know is looking for a PDA, please direct them here.
Let's join together and get this great PDA sold :) Thanks for your help!

Saturday, February 18, 2006

The Second Chance Movie

Hello again everyone. Sorry for the very long silence.
Last night Becca and I went to see The Second Chance Movie. I hope many of you were able to see the movie where you live. It seems like this weekend might be a test before they release the movie in more theatres next weekend. I know here in Michigan the movie is only showing in two theatres: Celebration North in Grand Rapids and Cinemark 20 in Grandville. If you are at all able, please go out and support this movie. I will not promise a huge budget blockbuster, but I think it is a good movie. Michael W Smith is the star and he portrays an associate pastor of a suburban church with a ministry to an inner city church. You'll have to watch the movie to learn more. Let me know what you think.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

End Of the Spear

I wanted to do my part to get the word out about End Of the Spear. This movie opens in theatres tomorrow January 20th. The movie is the story about 5 missionaries who were martyred in the jungles of Ecuador, attempting to share the Gospel with the Waorani Indian tribe. I am really excited to learn more about this event that has inspired so many to be involved in missions around the world and here in the United States.
Will post my thoughts on here when I've seen the movie. Let me know what you think when you have seen it.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Coffee quiz link

Here is a link if you want to do the Coffee quiz below. For some reason, the link wasn't included when I posted it here. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

What Kind Of Coffee Are You?

You Are an Espresso
At your best, you are: straight shooting, ambitious, and energetic
At your worst, you are: anxious and high strung
You drink coffee when: anytime you're not sleeping
Your caffeine addiction level: high

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

What Does Your Sneeze Reveal About You

I actually could not believe I heard this phrase on the radio this morning. However since reading the article about it, I thought this was too funny not to pass along.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Being good isn't good enough...

The following is an email I received from a missionary friend in Thailand.
I just sat down to check my e-mail... I didn't have anything. My eyes caught one of the older guys who is working for us building the water tank and future garage. These people live just down the road from us in make shift homes made out of tin and bamboo. They are construction workers and live like this all their lives. He was taking a break; a well deserved break, and just staring at the tree or something in that direction. I noticed as he was staring, that he has a large tumor on his neck. My guess is that he probably has cancer because he smokes tribal cigarettes and chews who knows what. Unfortunately that is common around here. Anyway, he has those kind of eyes that are soft and tender looking, non-judgmental, and non-condemning. As he stared at whatever he was staring at, the thought ran through my mind of how hard it is sometimes to be here in Thailand among people who have been blinded by our adversary and do not want to hear about the gospel. Yes, they are good people, honest, caring, and quite generous even though they have very little... but that isn't good enough is it. The road is straight and narrow. It demands only one thing. That we confess that we are sinners and by faith we accept the finished work of Jesus Christ... his death, burial and resurrection. This is the only acceptable payment for our sin. It is so simple and yet for the most part Thai people will have nothing to do with it. Not all of them of course. Christ is building His church in Thailand, but the blinders have been put on and most of them don't even know it.  It is hard and yet I know that it is through our lives and the life that we live in Christ that many will be drawn to Him. One of the people (a lady) that was working for us for these past 3 days mentioned to Dave that she would have liked to not work at the other job that they had off from for the New Year celebration, and would like to continue to work for us. "We were so kind", she said. "We were different", she said. Just pray with us that they would one day understand the story of Salvation... the life that WILL set them free.
God is doing a work around the world and in Thailand. Matthew 16:18 says "And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it" (NIV). This promise of God toward Peter applies to all of us who have called upon His name and accept Him as Saviour. Please pray for this family that God will encourage them as they serve Him.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Happy 2006!

Well this is the long overdue blog entry from the Holidays! Becca and I were with her family on Christmas Day. Wonderful time had by all. On 26 December we went to Ann Arbor to spend time with my family. Ann Arbor was the pre-determined "mid-way" point between Grand Rapids and Cleveland. We ate at a wonderful restaurant called Paesano's. If you are ever in the area, I highly encourage you to check it out and do not forget to bring your credit card with you.
The week between Christmas and New Years is a pretty dead week at work so I took as much time off as I could...2 days :( The other bad thing is that I was in the office on both days that I was supposed to take off. I need to reconcile that this week and take another afternoon off I think. We were closed on 2 January which was nice. Becca's work was also closed so we spent the day together. Let me back up to the weekend before New Years.
Before we moved into our condo we knew that we would need to replace the toilet seal in the 1/2 bathroom downstairs. This project has gotten away from us, but in light of leaking onto the washer downstairs, this project became an urgent priority. Becca and I went to Home Depot and got a toilet seal (this was a story in and of itself...will post more about it later). On Saturday morning, Becca's mom came over and she and Becca took care of this. I am not the handiest person with house work so I defer to the experts and help out in any way that I can. This policy works very well with Becca and her mom. A few months ago Becca and I purchased a cabinet that sits on top of the toilet for the 1/2 bathroom. Becca and her mom also put this together. In addition to all of this, Becca (with some help from me) painted the 1/2 bathroom so the really horrible pink color is gone. I will post pictures of the bathroom with the new gray color soon.
For Christmas, Becca and I bought ourselves a stereo from Target for the living room. After Becca put away the Christmas decorations we put up the stereo. It is certainly very nice to have a stereo in there.
We spent New Years Eve night with a family from our church and some other couples. We played some very fun, but interesting games. Got home close to 2am and was at church later that morning at 9:30. Needless to say we both took a nap Sunday afternoon. New Years Day night we were invited to dinner at the Keizers. Spent a lot of time reflecting on the Thailand trip this past June. I really enjoy times like this because it reconnects me to the trip. It feels like it was so long ago that we were in Thailand. We started talking about when the next trip would be and where we might go. Exciting discussions!

Well I'm back at work now. Back to the grind I guess. How was your Christmas and New Years? Does your family have any traditions you do each year?