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We have lived in Romania for 16 years now. We have 6 kids.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Prayer Request

Please pray for Catalin and Nadia. They are a young couple in our church who are discouraged. They have been married for 10 years now and living with his parents. His parents are unsaved and they stuggle with living with them. It is hard having two families under one roof...one very small roof too. They have been looking at the possibility of getting an apartment. Prices are high though, the lowest price apartment is around $40,000. Catalin has a good job and makes decent money but due to the huge amount that businesses must pay in taxes for employees they make it look like he makes much less on paper making it possible for them to only get a $10,000 loan from a bank. There just doesn't seem to be any options. They are looking at the option of an apartment in her home village which is about a 30 minute drive from here and they would be much less faithful and involved at church. We pray that they won't jump to any hasty decisions and truly trust in their Father who owns the cattle on a thousand hills. Please pray with us for them that God would make His will known to them and that they would be willing to wait on Him. Please pray that God would bring about an option here in Lugoj for them to be able to move out soon.
Thank you for lifting Catalin and Nadia up to our Father who knows our needs even before we speak them!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Precious Children



There was an old woman
Who lived in Romania
she had so many boys she didn't know what to do.
So she adopted a girl and another boy too
and then she was so happy
she gave them all ice cream and put them to bed!

You learn so many things from children. How much patience you have, for instance.
~Franklin P. Jones


While we try to teach our children all about life,
Our children teach us what life is all about.
~Angela Schwindt



What is a home without children? Quiet. ~Henny Youngman



Children are the brightest treasures we bring forth into this world, but too large a percentage of the population continues to treat them as inconveniences and nuisances, when they're not treating them as possessions or toys.

CHARLES DE LINT,



"Children will not remember you for the material things you provided but for the feeling that you cherished them."
Richard L. Evans




"A child enters your home and makes so much noise for twenty years that you can hardly stand it: then departs leaving the house so silent that you think you will go mad"
John Andrew Holmes



Friday, August 15, 2008

Baron rescues Joyce

So, I will first start off by recommending that no one ride an old Romanian train when it is 100 degrees outside...
I have been taking the train all summer and it hasn't been bad. When I catch the inter city train it is a newer one and even has air and clean bathrooms but they you are limited to the times they run. I started taking a train early in the morning and picking up the twins and coming back the same day and those are the older trains. Up until now it hasn't been bad because the times I have gone haven't been hot, in fact when I went just 3 weeks ago it was rainy and chilly. So, I didn't even think about the fact that it was supposed to be 100 degrees yesterday when I took the train. The morning ride wasn't so bad, I left at 5 am and got there at 10 am. The taxi ride to Marghita was a little hot...only the driver put his window down, all other window had to be up out of fear for the "current". Romanians are very fearful of a cross draft, you can catch a cold and ear infection that way. They would rather stay in stagnent, dead, hot air then feel a current.
I picked up the kids and we took another taxi back to the train station in Oradea (about an hour away). It was 4:30 in the afternoon and it was 100 degrees. Praise the Lord this taxi turned on the air conditioning! We sat in the heat at the train station waiting for a our train that was 30 minutes late. When we got on the train we were in a cabin (there is room for 8) that was full and we were sitting on the side that the sun was beating in. Someone finally closed the window so the curtains could be closed so now the sun wasn't beating in but there was also no wind at all. After about 30 minutes at the next stop all the men got off and so there was more room. At this point I begin to panic, I was hot, stuffy and we were all dreanched. I saved the rest of my water for the twins because they had drank all their juice. I started to get a headache and nauseated. I was trying to figure out where I could throw up because I had taken a trip to the bathroom with the twins and lets just say, just the sight and smell of the bathroom would be enough to make one throw up so I knew I couldn't go in there. Then I was trying to keep the twins occupied and I got to feeling so bad that I didn't think I could make it a second longer. The twins were getting riled up and so I separated them and told them mommy doesn't feel good, please just sit still and probably because they too were so hot they did pretty good at sitting. We were supposed to change trains in Timisoara and arrive home in Lugoj and I had parked the van at the train station that morning so I would drive us home. I couldn't bear the thought of another hot train and I called Baron and asked him to please meet us in Timisoara and take us home in the air conditioned car and he kindly agreed right away. So, he walked with the boys to the train station to pick up the van. He packed up the boys in the van and met us at the station with water. I was ready to cry when I saw him and realized the air conditioned car was just minutes away. I felt so bad, I was so glad he came to our rescue. We have discovered I am like my mom...I don't do well in the heat. Even today we were visiting some friends and their puppy they wanted us to see and possibly take home (yes we took him home...I'll introduce him later) and we were sitting outside in the shade and I wasn't feeling too bad ( it was 100 degrees again today) but Baron asked if I was ok because my face was all red. I am thankful we don't have that many 100 degree days...I'll just have to drive around in the car with the air on on those days :) No more Romanian trains for me until the weather cools down! The kids had a great time together in the van on the way home. The twins were also glad they didn't have to get on another train...I was really tired of hearing "cand ajungem mami", they asked that over and over and over (when are we going to be there).
So, that is how Baron came to my rescue.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Ongoing Saga of Baron and the Romanian Police.

What is it exactly about Baron that makes the police in Romania desire to stop him..we can't figure it out but when we do we'll be sure and fix the problem. He still hasn't resolved the DL situation. He finally put in a request to get a new one from the state of MO and it should be here sometime next week...where is his old DL I believe that only God knows that. So, yes, he has been driving without a DL out of necessity and he has been driving the speed limit and obeying the rules of the road. He was quite shocked last night on his way back from dropping someone off at home after church to be stopped by a police..."what have I done now" was his first thought (I was not with him). The police man tells him he pulled him over because his license tag is hand written and that is illegal (it has been that way for 4 years now). He then asks to see his car papers...his car paper says his tires should be 185 radial and his tires are 195 and that is a fine plus getting your car papers taken away for 30 days or until you get the tires fixed (he has been driving with those size of tires for 7 years). Then he asks to see his insurance papers,Baron knew that his insurance expired this month and the insurance guy was coming today or tomorrow to renew it, but low and behold it had expired on the 8th of August just 2 days earlier, that would $400 fine. Then finally he asks to see Baron's DL...um well sir you see its kind of a long story but here goes, fortunately Baron had the paper with him as proof that his DL was taken and that his time had expired and he should be able to drive. So, he had a case stacked against him and he was looking at a huge fine for all of this. The police man asked Baron, "what do you suggest I do?" Baron said , "I just ask that you have mercy." So, he did and he only wrote him a ticket for driving without a DL which was about $60 but compared to what he was facing we were quite happy with that ticket! The police man was fortunately very kind and compassionate. Baron told him as he was leaving, "I will be only driving my bike until I get my license back." The policeman laughed.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

A conversation with American kids who live in Romania (my kids).

I really got a laugh out of this conversation I had with my kids on our way home from church tonight and I thought I would share it with you all.
Zach: "I am going to learn to drive a horse instead of a car when I get bigger."
Me: "Well, what if God calls you back to America, you can't drive a horse through the city."
Spencer: "Why not?"
Me: "Well, cars go really fast on roads in America and you can't ride a horse because the horse can't go fast enough."
Spencer: "Well, you could drive a horse in America if you lived in a village."
This is where I started to laugh...this was a serious conversation, they weren't kidding around and I got so tickled. Then Spencer said : "what, no villages in America!" I told them maybe they could live on a ranch in America and then they could ride their horses around the ranch.
Hopefully God will call them to stay in Romania then they can fill up their horse and buggy with people and bring them to church in the church "van".

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Camp

These are the 12 campers that went to camp this past week. We also took 7 younger kids including our two oldest sons 2 weeks ago. We also took up two workers. Isabela worked there for two weeks. She started coming to our church during VBS 4 years ago. She has been saved for a couple of years. We also took David, a student at the Bible college. He went and helped out this past week with our teens. Adelina, one of the girls that went to camp this week accepted Christ as her Savior.

This is the camp site. The camp was required by law to do some work on their kitchen. They had to construct a whole new kitchen. We received $1000 more then was needed to send our campers to camp so that went towards the construction of the new camp kitchen. They were very thankful to receive this money. Thank you to all of you who sent money for camp.



The road to camp.


Gina's room. We can't wait until she can be in it for always.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Adoption Update

This is so hard to put into words but I will try and write it out so you all can understand where we are at. As you know an aunt (at least she said she was an aunt) showed up at the children's home saying she wanted to take the twins. The worker told her to come back and talk to the director and the aunt has not showed up again...this was over 4 weeks ago...(that is a good thing that it has been so long). So, the social worker and children's home director were told by their boss to proceed with our paper work. As of right now no one knows the aunt's name, if she really is their aunt, where she lives etc. This is all good and we are less worried about this aunt now.
As far as our day in court goes. The child protective services have 30 working days from when our last piece of paper was put in. Apparently they were missing a certain paper which just got put in 2 weeks ago (the twins social worker had to get a paper from our social worker in Timisoara and the first time she didn't get the right one..I think that is the reason it took so long). So, now after talking to the twins social worker she said we should hear from the department of child protection by the end of this month. They have the power to send it to court our they have the power to say, no right away and not send it on to court. I think the only way they would flat out say no is if this aunt showed up and spoke with them but if she did I think they would have to inform us of that. We are still trusting that this is truly in God's hands and really not in the hands of the people there, that is the only thing that will keep us sane in the whole process, knowing that God is ultimately in control. We did contact a lawyer but, after we told her where we were at in the process she seemed to think it was a normal thing to be waiting this long. She told us she would gladly give us a consult but I think we will not waste the money at this point since there is really nothing a lawyer could do yet.
The really hard thing is that with school starting it is going to be so much harder for visiting the twins. I can't put the boys education on the back burner but we also must maintain a relationship with the twins. Pray for us.
Also, pray for my friend who is supposed to be coming to stay with us for 6 months. I desperately need her help this year. She just recently had surgery for a herniated disk so I don't know when she will be coming now.

Monday, August 4, 2008

This week in the Howerton Family

I find myself today sitting at my kitchen table surrounded by mounds of home school books and I find myself feeling a tiny bit overwhelmed...ok make that completely overwhelmed! You have to do the same amount of planning for one 4th grader that a teacher would have to do for a whole class and then you also have to plan for a 3rd grader and a kindergartner. You want to make sure that they learn everything they need to and that they have a fun year too. I always told myself I would stick to one curriculum to make sure I got everything in and could be organized. This year I find myself using curriculum from 3 different companies! We start school August 25...if you think about it pray for me and my boys as we embark on this adventure in our one room school with their new teacher...Mrs. Howerton. I was so distracted by my planning today that I lost track of time and before I knew it Drew and Spencer had played video games for 4 hours!! I know, that is terrible but, they usually are only allowed to play on Saturday afternoons. Baron and Zach were gone all day and the boys didn't seem to know what to do with themselves and I was trying to get some planning done so I let them play while Nate napped and yes, Nate napped the entire 4 hours...I know, I know I am a lucky lady to have a 2 year old that naps for so long!

In other news...Nate is no longer in a crib. I had to make room for school desks so his crib had to go. We have a bunk bed with a double bed on the bottom that some friends gave us. So, we have a dorm room for boys in our house...when our boys go off to college it will be no adjustment at all, they will move from one dorm room to another. Nate is so stubborn I thought for sure it would be a difficult adjustment getting him to stay in his bed. I don't know if it is because he is in the same room as the big boys and has their example to follow but moving him to a big boy bed has been a breeze. He doesn't get up until I come in and wake them up in the morning. So, I thought surely nap time will be a challenge when he is in there all alone...wrong again. No problem at all, I think he likes likes his bobop (a.k.a. pacifier) so much that he longs for nighty night time when he is allowed to have it. I do think I am the worlds luckiest mom...I have great sleepers. No bed time whines for water, potty, or anything like that. Even the twins are great sleepers. God knew I would be a really cranky mom if I didn't get enough sleep so he granted me kids that sleep through the night and nap well.
One other story about great sleepers. When we came back from furlough 2 years ago after Nate was born I was a bit emotional. I remembered the last time we came back to Romania with a newborn how long it took him to adjust to the time change. I was really struggling this time with my emotions and was worried that a lack of sleep would just push me over the top. Our first night back in Romania I put 3 month old Nate into his crib expecting to wake up with him in a couple of hours. I put him down at 7 p.m. and didn't hear a peep from him until 7 the next morning and that was that. God was so generous to me and aided my emotional recovery by allowing me to sleep through the night. From that night on, he slept 12 hours each night. It was such a blessing from God that I will never forget.
I hope and pray to have some news soon on at least a court date this month. We by law should at least get a court date in September. Please continue to pray.