Saturday, July 14, 2012

Name Change

Guess the African Groggs blog will have to have a name change.  Not sure to what quite yet.  Too be honest, I still feel like an African Grogg.  But in reality, we are American Groggs again (and always were really).  Our family just went to DAR (which stands for debriefing and renewal) for a week in Colorado.  The great thing ab this time for me was that while Jon & I were debriefing, with a theme for each day, the kids were doing the exact same thing.  One day they gave each of us balls of yellow and blue play doh.  First we were told to squish the two balls together, then try to pull them apart.  Impossible.  Next we rolled the squished balls into one ball...and it looked similar to the globe now w/ the two colors mixed together.  The yellow represented "me" before moving overseas.  The blue represented who "I" became in my new culture and country.  The end product was the person I am now, a "world christian" was the term they used.  The kids, however, came back from class w/ green play doh.  They got to mix their blue and yellow play doh together, representing that they are neither "American" or that of their second culture, but they are both.  And the two colors will forever be mixed; cannot be separated.  They are what is known as TCKs, third culture kids (there is a book called Third Culture Kid if you ever feel like learning more ab these amazing kids and the challenges/joys they face growing up).  No doubt ab it: we are blessed by our time as "workers", we have been changed by our time in Africa, and this is the hardest transition we have made so far.  The kids aren't sure which direction is up at this point.  We are all looking forward to moving into a rental house in Manhattan, KS on August 1...and watching the Lord unfold the things He has planned for us.  Exciting, scary, happy, & sad are just a few of the emotions we have been experiencing since saying goodbye to our life in Africa on May 23rd.  Maybe blogging can help me continue the "debriefing" process.  Hahaha I always say that :)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Kids quotes from Oct to Dec 2011

Well, I am pretty much behind on everything I always think I want to do w/ my of them being collecting the kids' funny things they say every month and then putting them on my blog so we can laugh ab the things they say later. I started writing things in October on sticky notes but so far they never made it to the blog (either has anything else in our life!). Today its so windy here I am sure if I were hiring a nanny and there was a long line of them at our front door, they would all blow right down the street. So I am gonna pop in Mary Poppins for Gabby to watch while Kyler naps and Kolby is in arabic class and catch up on my piles. This being one of them. I obviously didn't record them all...and Kolby's list is short bc now he goes to school and most of the things he says that are funny are too inappropriate to keep track of :)

"Don't worry."
"No thank you please!!!"
"I santa! I eatin' my cookies and drinkin' my milk!" (as he drinks almond milk and eats banana chips)
"NO NO DOGGY! NO NO!" (yelling at the barking dogs from our bedroom window)
"I gotta bootie, I gotta bootie" (repeating several times while dancing in the bath tub)
"Nut job"
"you stink!"
"night night elephant poop"
"chocolate milk angee, chocolate milk angee" (receiving his almond chocolate milk he adds angie on the end bc she drinks hot choco w us sometimes)
"Lay down, Mommy! Lay down!"

"Someday I'm gonna be a rockstar."
"When you are satisfied He shines thru..."
"I'm doing so good at preschool Angie's not gonna know what to do w/ me."
"Mom, sometimes Kyler likes to play poke in the hole, spinny spin spin, and go grandpa go!"
"That's killing me!"

"We need to take the grogg outta the grump."

Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Sunday Morning Message from Gabby

This is the song in Gabby's heart this Sunday morning :) Actually I think it was inspired from the sparkly heart on her shirt that I can see her rubbing as she sings to her audience in the TV...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Swinging alone & haircuts...check.

On Thursday Kolby learned how to swing! I think he has been "swinging" for a long time alone but something just clicked and he was swinging so high!! His whole face was one big smile. This is what he said to me, "Mommy! I learned how to swing! God just gave me a push and then I just started pumping my legs and doing it all by myself! Daddy is going to be so proud of me!"
Kyler's first hair cut! Ok, so I really didn't want to cut it but it was making him mad (hair hanging in his eyes)...I took the first cut and handed the scissors off to Angie b/c she is braver than I...and does a better job! Before pic.
After pic. Well he started to get a little impatient so we just had to be done...but its really cute and he looks super grown up now. (There you go, Leanne!)
Angie cut Gabby Girl's hair too...just a trim.

Angie w/ the kids before our Arabic class on Thursday...after the fun haircuts and swinging. We are totally enjoying having our "Angie" back!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

In Bed

Well today I have been in bed almost all day w/ this darn cold turned into something living in my sinuses. Jon was so good to stay home today so I could try to get better before our busy week begins tomorrow. So since I am in bed, what better time to catch up on some blogs. I posted an update on each of the three little people that occupy most of my time. I also finished reading "Three Cups of Tea"...uh so good. Thanks Mickey for bringing it for us to read...a year ago! I am pretty sure I cried through at least half of it. If anyone is looking for a good down to earth reality story ab the Muslim world this is a great book to read. It's about Greg Mortenson's journey of starting schools for girls in Pakistan and Afghanistan...w/ an incredible message of promoting peace. Ok, must close my eyes before they pop out of my head. Look at me blogging.

Kolby, almost 6 1/2 yrs old

This little boy has a vivid memory and imagination. Therefore, I think sometimes living overseas away from his family is hardest on him. He remembers last Christmas w/ Nana & Papa and Grandma & Grandpa and longs for traditions to stay the same. He had a hard holiday season...but when Nana sent this magical packet of fake snow in the mail he was thrilled! He missed the snow and even though he loves seeing pictures and hearing stories of his cousins in the snow I know it's hard for him to not be apart of it.
One morning I woke up to find this letter on the table. He wrote it after having a hard night of missing his friends and family in America. I had my computer hooked up to the TV and thought it would be fun to just have a slideshow of pictures running so the kids could play and watch. Seems like right after I did that I had to go help Kyler, Gabby went to play in her room, and Jon had to answer the gate (and was having difficulty figuring out what the man wanted) so Kolby was left alone to watch the pictures. All of a sudden I am coming downstairs and he is coming upstairs just sobbing. Broke my heart. He was crying b/c he just missed everyone so much. He's so tender. Nothing makes me want to pack my bags more than that...not even political unrest. This is what his letter said the next day, "Dear Dad and Gabby and Mom and Kyler, I will take you to America." To say the least, he is looking forward to a visit this summer.
One afternoon out w/ Daddy just walking around I think...and Jon captured this of Kolby. He still loves to curl up in small spaces and could watch for hours what is going on around him.
And yes, he wears this Halloween shirt at least once a week :) This is the big carrot he and Jon bought at the market one afternoon.
Angie has returned!! She came back at the beginning of Feb...and Kolby is back in action w/ some one on one time kindergarten instead of constant interruption kindergarten that he was having w/ me everyday. She took these 2 photos of him during school time. The top one cracks me up. He draws a picture and then journals ab it everyday. He seems to have some little thing happening in his mind this day w/ the car and his "dog" Harley sitting on his journal. The photo below is of Kolby's first day back to kindergarten w/ Angie. He got all dressed up for her :)

Gabriella, the almost 4 year old (in 4 months)

Gabby, put some clothes on! It's winter! Everyday I have to tell this girl to put on some pants or tights or socks...or clothes. She loves to wear summer clothes all year. What she really loves to do is run around in her underwear!
Jon took Kolby and Gabby to this little park the other week after Gabby had a nasty battle w/ the flu for 5 days. She was so happy to get out of the house and start eating again. I am sure she lost at least 10 lbs.
This is one of my favorite pictures of Gabby from Jan. She is growing up (too fast) into such a pretty little girl. Her facial expressions just kill me sometimes...I wish I could capture them all on camera.
Gabby and Ellie had a tea party this week (Kyler joined in on the fun too...his first tea party :) ).
Sipping water and eating toast. Such joy! Gabby adores her friend Ellie. She is very lucky to have a little girl her age, who is an American, live next door! They get along so good (most of the time). Gabby talks about her and prays for her when she's not around. It makes my heart so happy that she has a friend like that.