Saturday, December 18, 2010

Hogar, dulce hogar

Three weeks since I posted! yikes! I guess we were a little busy :)

I didn't really know what to expect on our first visit back to Oregon. I knew it was going to be strange to be back in our "home", and it not be our home. And it was. We have no house there. Our jobs aren't there. Our belongings aren't there. We have changed our whole lives, while everyone in Oregon is still doing what they do. We felt out of the "loop". I realized that God had done this in our hearts to bless us. He has made me very happy here, in order that I can serve Him here with Joy. I also realized what it must be like to be the one staying..... Our families are there, and we are not, and it is very tough for them to see us for two weeks, then not see us for 6 months.

We did a lot of explaining. We tried to get people excited about MBS, and about Tres Cruces. We really just want everyone back home to get a chance to come here and see first-hand what is going on with us. *hint hint*

I also realized how much I LOVE having the Students here (I got to see the three of them who are from Oregon-- whom I hadn't seen in almost a month!). I can't wait for those kids to get back here!...... and I realized how much I miss Memorie, and how much my kids miss their girls. It is very quiet, and often lonley here with only us. It is much easier to bear day-to-day with friends on the other side of our wall.

We had a lot of meetings, and we had a lot of very good visits with dear friends and family. We tried to stretch ourselves as far as we could.

But I still came home feeling like I missed people. I didn't get enough time with some of you-- which is why you have to come see me. *hint hint*
Overall- we had a very good trip. It was good to see all of you who we got a chance to see! And thank you to the Millers, and Wilsons for planning a wedding during that week, so that we could see a lot of people at once :-D (even though Jem knows that she is one of those people who I didn't get to see enough of).
I also did some shooting while I was there. I had a Senior Shoot with Miki:
I did a Family Shoot with the Ballengers:

And I did a baby shoot with Grace and Hayden, and Hayden's Big Brother Breaden:

We got home on Tuesday the 14th, and were welcomed by Luis, and the dogs (who thought we had left them forever) and the warm Mexico sunshine :)

Now we are preparing for a team. They will be here on Monday, and they will be here through Christmas, and leave on New Years Day. My Mom will be with them-- and my kids are not the least bit excited..... ha! ;-) (Taiah cleaned her room!!! She MUST be excited!).

So I will go now, and put some sheets on some beds, and some towels in the bathrooms.

Here is a little peek at what Oregon had to offer us. (A very beautiful {cold!! but beautiful} place to be...... for a short time :-D)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Words

I put this post off for a whole day. I just don't seem to have words this week.

I didn't really know what it was.

I have had a burden of prayer for a couple of people.

In a matter of 24 hours, I found out why.

Our friends in Uganda are dealing with serious illnesses this week, and in the middle of two teams! The enemy wants to put a damper on the spreading of The Gospel- and he is doing his best. But our God is awesome, and it is HE who reigns- in heaven, and on earth.
We are praying for you Zane!

Our Friend from the North, who I mentioned a few weeks back, has been taken from his home
and put in custody. Once again- the enemy trying to stop the furthering of The Gospel.

This is serious stuff friends.

The Word of God is the beginning of faith. The Message of God's sacrifice for our salvation, in HIS own words. That is a powerful thing!
Just stop and think about the power that God's words have:
They spoke the world into being ~ Gen. chapter 1
They gave Man dominion over the earth ~ Gen. chapter 2
They cursed Man for his transgressions ~ Gen. chapter 3
They gave Moses the Law ~ Exodus chapter 20
They declared Jesus to be God ~ Mat. 3:17
Jesus tells us that ALL of His words, were God's ~ John 14:24
Therefore: every word Jesus spoke on this earth, was a direct word from God.
And His words forgave our transgressions, and conquered death ~ John 19:30
And they will offer me living water in the End ~ Rev. 21:6

Now, in Matthew 4, we see that Satan knows the Word of God.
If you were him, wouldn't you want to keep people from hearing it??
He knows the ending!

He gave us His Word.

Be IN it.

KNOW it.

SHARE it.
We are His feet.
Let's keep the Word moving.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Where are the weeks going?

It is a little difficult to explain how strange it feels (as an Oregonian), that THIS is November. It is sunny and warm every day. We haven't had rain in a month. Last week it was in the 90's. This week it has been in the 80's.

Mexico obviously doesn't celebrate Thanksgiving, so there is no precursor to Christmas. It took me completely off guard to see Christmas decorations out in the stores.

(Side note: Mexico is in a different world when it comes to Christmas propaganda!! There are hardly any bins of decorations, no one has trees, there are a couple of tree farm lots, but they are $50 or more...and we hardly hear mention of any of it!)



SO! Since the year is moving on around us, and we are here in the quiet seclusion of our own little ranch.... we are crafting and plugging along at school!

I have been crocheting some things for gifts, and will be sewing some others.

Taiah has been pushing through her books.... she would rather get her work done before lunch, so she gets started right after breakfast, instead of our scheduled start time of 10:00am. She has been learning about Uganda, and the animals of the Safari Plains (Summer- I promise she will be typing out her letter to Eryn soon! She has it written already ;)

She has also been working a lot on her spelling. We got a spelling workbook on Amazon- and I hate it. So I have been using some of the suggestions that my friend Esther gave me, and keeping it easy for her. LOTS of repetition!

Asa L-O-V-E-S starfall.com

We have been fans for a long time, but he is able to navigate the site himself now, and thinks it is great! Check out the letter "Z" ..... it is his fave ;-)

The students are doing great! We have been getting regular updates from them, and we are getting so anxious to see them all!!

Apparently the food in Tabasco is better than the food in Bangladesh ;)


We had a spur of the moment visit from Ryan's Uncle and Cousin from Spring Valley this week! That was awesome!! We LOVE having people here, and it was good to see them and get to visit up at their house for a while before we all came down here. We are going to go back up to their place for Thanksgiving next week too! I only wish I could figure out a way to sneak Luis up there too ;) so he could experience an American Thanksgiving dinner! But he will have to talk his mama into making him dinner instead :)

Tomorrow is the Baja 1000 off-road race. It is pretty much the biggest Off-Road race in this hemisphere. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baja_1000. We aren't excited a bit. And we definitely didn't spend ALL day yesterday 4-wheeling through the Mexican desert tracking the race route and finding a good spot to watch it........ that would be silly.......
Photos to come :-D

8 days 'til Thanksgiving!

13 days 'til Oregon!!

Woo Hoo!!!!

><> Shae

Monday, November 8, 2010

Going, Going, ........ Gone



Everyone is gone. Spread throughout the world- sharing the Gospel. This is the work that they have been preparing for. They have been working non-stop for two months to be equipped to take these trips. The anticipation of hearing their stories is almost unbearable! I am SO anxious to see them all again-- and they have not even been gone a week :)
Nate and Chris made it safely to Bangladesh. They have limited internet- so we haven't heard too much from them.
The rest of the bunch left Saturday for Comalcalco, Tabasco, MX. (outside of Villahermosa)
I haven't heard from any of them, so I assume that they have yet to find internet.

We walked up to the kitchen yesterday.
No one was there.
So we went into town and had $0.84 fish tacos.
They were delish.

When we got home, no one was here.

Three more weeks and we're leavin' for Oregon!!


"Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! The LORD of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah"
Psalm 46:10-11

Monday, November 1, 2010

One more Update!


I forgot to mention that ALL of the expenses for the Students' trips came in- and they ALL get to participate! Praise God! One month ago, there were only 2 or 3 who knew for sure that they could go. Thank you for your gracious donations!!! And Thank you Lord for providing for us, and stretching our surplus!!

November?


The sun is shining, and it is 81 degrees outside. Doesn't feel like any November that I have ever experienced. I am LOVING every minute of it. We have been here for 16 weeks! Can you believe it?!
The semester is winding down, and so is the year! In 5 days, we will have an empty Ranch with the exception of our family. We have had close to 100 different people visit us since July.
What-A-Blessing!
I don't think that Google allows enough storage for me to list the ways that the Lord has blessed us since then! This adventure has been over and above anything we could have ever expected- and the year isn't even over yet!
Our Students will be leaving for Villahermosa, Mexico on Saturday. They will be ministering to over 100 Mexican Pastors there. Pray for their safety, health, and obedience. Nate and Chris will leave Thursday for Bangladesh. They will be ministering there for two weeks, and then they go on to Uganda for a visit with the McCourneys for two weeks. They have a LOT of traveling to do this month, and will need your prayers for safety, health, rest, and sensitivity to the Spirit! Also pray for Memorie and the girls, as they are in Oregon, missing Nate, and will no doubt be struggling with worry while he is overseas. Also pray for our Students as they go home. You can't imagine how difficult it will be for them to go back to "normal" life at home.
I am so excited to hear about how these two trips go, and what all happens while they are all gone! But I am overwhelmingly sad that our friends will be leaving here, and some may not return next semester. We don't know who will be staying here in January, but we know that the Lord will send them, and it will be a blessed semester as well!
I am also SO VERY excited to go visit in Oregon at the end of the month!!! We will leave here on November 30th, and be in Oregon for two weeks. The kids are so excited that they could explode. They are going to make a countdown chain today :) They miss their Moog and Gump like no one's business! (they haven't gotten to skype with them at all), and they can't stop talking about all of the people that they are going to stay overnight with ;). I miss RCF like crazy. I underestimated the impact that moving away from my church would have on me. I can't wait to see everyone, to sit in on Phil's teaching (in person- and not just over the net ;), and Dorie better remember to schedule me for the Coffee Shop- cause I am in dire need of some serious Espresso construction AND consumption!
As far as happenings updates:
David shaved Austin's head.

That's right. Bald Austin. Very, ummm, different.



Ryan shaved Asa's head. :-( Boo Hoo..... no more blonde locks. But he loves it- and he is Brothers with Austin ;),

so what else would you expect.
Samson ate his first animal: a Jackrabbit that Nate shot. He loved it. He became carnivorous, and will hopefully start to hunt the rabbits himself (pesky buggers!)

!!!FELIZ CUMPLIANOS!! to our niece Katherine!!! She turned 5 yesterday!! We are sorry we had to miss your Peter Pan Party, Katie- but we will see you in 28 days!!!
Well.... new pics are up, and I am off to read in the sun :-D
Bendiciones! ><> Shae

Sunday, October 24, 2010

New Friends, and a New View

SO much to catch up on!!!
Phil and Susie were her on Tuesday the 12th, through Saturday the 16th. SO awesome to get to show them what has been going on here! Susie hadn’t been here in years. In fact-- there are twice as many buildings here now as there were the last time she was here :-)
Phil taught the students Wednesday- Friday, so Mem and I got to visit a lot with Susie. It is SUCH an encouragement to have people here from home! You guys have no idea how much it blesses us! More than anything, we want you all to feel like this is YOUR base, and you are all welcome here anytime, and we hope that you all come- at some point- to see first-hand what goes on here.
We took Phil and Susie back up to San Diego to get their car on Saturday. They had left their car at the home of an old friend of mine (and theirs), Ira! It was SO awesome to see her, and meet her husband and her boys, and see her incredibly cute pregnant belly (a little girl this time!) and her amazing home! We hope to be able to visit with JK and Ira again soon! Plus- they sent us home with a baby banana tree!!! And a dragon fruit plant!! SO awesome! After visiting with the Shea’s ;) for a while, we got to go spend a gift we were given: TICKETS TO SEA WORLD! We had a blast- and the kids were stoked, and we enjoyed just being off base for a while. Thank you SO much!!! (You know who you are ;-D)
Whew! That was a full week in itself-- but little did we know at the time, what was to come!
We hurried to get the base together for the next wave of guests who arrived on Tuesday night (the 19th). Mem, the students, and I got together beds and accommodations for 40 people, while the guys left for the States early Tuesday to run errands, then meet up with the three groups of people coming from different directions so they could guide everyone in. ~ might I add, that it rained so hard, from 6:00am to sometime Wednesday morning, that we had a river running through our ranch, a lake out front, and a moat around the triplex!! It wiped out our driveway, and flooded our 5th wheel. We couldn’t dry any laundry, so we made do with what we had clean. Plus, the students had slept in tents on Monday night, to make room for guests, and their blankets got soaked, and so we had to run them through the ONE dryer that we have here so that they would have dry bedding. THEN we had to move some sleeping plans around, so we could fit all the kids back indoors so they would be dry. It all worked out- piece’a cake, and there was plenty of room :).
Ryan met up with the RCF van and brought it over, then Nate and Danny met up with both, the group from Phoenix, and the group who flew in. The RCF team came in--in the POURING rain-- at 5:30, and Nate and Danny came through later, guiding the other vans. They had car trouble in Tecate, and it took them a few extra hours to get here, but by midnight, we had 46 people on base! My idea of fun!
I could go on for hours and pages about everything that happened this week. It was amazing, and eye-opening. We experienced a taste of WHY it is that we are here, and it was an answer to prayers for many of us. We heard the testimony of a man from a country in Africa. Most of us have never even heard of this little country, but there are 3 million people there who are going to hell. The citizens are required to practice Islam, and they are a nearly 100% Muslim Nation. There is a new underground church of over 1,200 Christians spread around the nation. It is highly illegal, and not at all accepted for the Christians to profess their faith, own a bible, or speak of Jesus. They worship in secret, they pray in secret, and some of the leaders live in secret. Our Friend lives in secret. His family is often in hiding. His dear friend, and mentor, who was the first known Christian in this country, was brutally beaten to death this year. Our friend was thrown in prison, and beaten too. His back was fractured, and he believes that Jesus himself , or an angel of God stepped into that prison and took the beating for him- otherwise he would be dead. Still- he spends all of his energy seeking to save the souls of his lost countrymen.
We also met a man named Billy Graham Paulose-- the son of Moses Paulose, whom some of you know. He has a thriving ministry in India. He himself has been beaten, stoned, and had human feces thrown on him for the sake of the Gospel. He is an energetic evangelist, who is amazingly joyful and hilarious! Even though he lives in an area of extreme poverty, immorality, and Hinduism. He sees his friends beaten, burned and murdered for their faith. Yet he is daily seeking to further the Gospel in India!
We saw the deep faith, and love for our God in the lives of our Romanian brothers too! The Romanian church (which is, btw, ALL over the world- including the US!) is full of passionate believers. These 12 guys came from Arizona, and Texas, and Oregon to see what this MBS school is all about. They are all involved in the furthering of the Kingdom in Europe, Asia, and Africa. They were so excited to see that we are training up people to go out and bring the Gospel to these places. They have seen the need first-hand!
~Also, if you ever meet a Romanian: expect to be invited to stay the night, to be fed, and to be sent away with food!!! These guys know hospitality!! And their wives and Mamas can BAKE!! I’m telling’ you!~
The sun came out for the rest of the conference, and it has been fairly warm this weekend. We didn’t exactly get to greet them with warm Mexican sunshine- but that’s OK ;-)
our foreign almost froze to death I think, considering that they are from the Sahara desert, and India, but they survived. And this is my PSA for you to ALL go to listen to them speak while they are in Roseburg!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This is not a suggestion-- it is a COMMAND!! Your life will be changed!! I mean it!!
Our friend from Africa will be at RCF on Wednesday night. GO!!!!!
You will have a new perspective of missions-- I promise!!
The Lord opened my eyes to the magnitude of the MBS training going on here, and it’s importance. This place is making a difference, and God is using us to help do it! This is just the beginning of the HUGE things that are going to go on concerning our ranch. This is a BIG deal guys!! GET INVOLVED!! However God is calling you!! We have the system set up here to reach millions with the Word of God! If you have any questions, or are still confused about what exactly is going on here-- email me! If you are interested in spending some time here-- Email me!! If you are interested in the school--Email me-- If you want to support a missionary--email me!! If you want to know what you can do -- EMAIL ME!! And go Wednesday night to RCF and listen to Our Friend speak. Thank you for reading my ramblings! And thank you for waiting two weeks for an update! And THANK YOU for your prayers always!! Pray for Our Friends as they are in the States. Pray for their families as they are back home! And pray for the church in Africa, as they are ALWAYS in danger, and there is persecution going on daily!!!
Praise God that we had an awesome week and everything went well. Praise God that everyone made it home safely. And praise God that our students are all fired up!! Pray for them as they will all leave in two- three weeks to go to Tabasco, Mexico (where over 100 Mexican pastors are expected to come for training!!), or Bangladesh (East of India-- almost 90% Islamic!!).

Lots of new pictures up: http://picasaweb.google.com/steffensenfaminmexico/ConferenceWeek#

Until next week!!
><> Shae

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

When I was in high school, my teachers were frustrated with me. Their job was to prepare me for "life". To encourage me to plan for my future. College mainly.
But I just wanted to be a mom. A wife. A homemaker. After all, I was already engaged when I was 17.
Turns out- I'm not really very good at it.
I am much better at capturing nostalgia in a photograph than teaching a 4 year old why he should obey me.
I can make a killer cup of Java. But I fail everyday at teaching my 8 year old why she should be respectful.
I can turn a piece of fabric into any of a thousand different functional little articles. But at the end of the day,
I am pretty sure I have not done a single thing to properly train up my children.
That is where God's grace comforts me. He just paves the way for us, and asks us to be obedient in the way we go, IN FAITH!
I know that He called me to this job. HE will equip me. I WILL see fruit of my labor! I have seen it for the past 8 years..... It just doesn't show up overnight. I know that.
If I stop and think about His parenting is going.... then my picture isn't so very different!
What a bunch of disobedient, disrespectful, unfaithful kids He has!! And He is perfect at it!
God uses earthly pictures to represent spiritual truths..... and this one is a biggie!
Just like marriage-- our parenting is a picture of our relationship with Him. He lovingly corrects, and redirects- until one day, after much disobedience, He has to outright discipline! I don't know about you, but in my life, He has had to do some serious disciplining at times!
Again,
and again
and again
and again..........
Jude 1:21 "keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life."
Thank the Lord that we have HIS mercies!!
1Cr 10:31 " Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."
Col 3:17 " And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. "
Col 3:23 "And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men,"
Psa 127:3-4 " Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one's youth."
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
We had a big week on the Ranch! We had RAIN!!!
On Wednesday, we had a minor malfunction with our pump at the well. A valve broke and so the well water was being pumped into the creek bed instead
of the pila for who-knows-how-long. We only found this out when we had used all of the water that was in the pila already :) So Ryan did what he does
and got it fixed. We turned the pump back on at 10:00pm Wednesday night.
From 2:00am Thursday morning, until the next morning, we had constant rolling thunder, intermittent lightning, and off and on pouring rain.
It was QUITE a show! The kids were loving it! It was 80 degrees out and pouring fat drops of warm rain. AND THEN-
The loudest clap of thunder with simultaneous lightning right in front of my face! The bolt hit a transformer on a power pole
at the edge of our neighbors property- maybe 200 yards from my porch! So we- of course- lost power :)
So we had had a good 9 hours of water pumping into the well, and figured that the power guys would most likely be DAYS before they got all the way out here
to fix it. So we went on water conservation mode (5 minutes showers, no laundry washing, if its yellow..... you get the idea).
We went to the market and got ice for all of the refrigerators, and some groceries. We saw a group of guys on the road pointing flashlights at various power lines, and
Luis was able to tell them where it had hit, and by the time Mem and I got back with the groceries, our half of the
compound had the power back on! After only 5 hours! And a few hours later, the power on the east end came back on too.
So we had ourselves a little scare, but the Lord had mercy on us :). We were beginning to think we might actually learn what "roughing it" actually means ;)
We buy our drinking water, so we would have been fine in that department, but we would have ran out of washing water, and gone without lights, fans, a phone, or internet for a while.
Praise the Lord we have had fairly mild weather the rest of the week :)

Nate left for Acapulco for a week on Sunday, so the past few days have been work days for the students. They are helping get the base ready for the next couple weeks
full of guests, and for this weekend when Pastor phil and Susie get here :-D YAY! SO excited to see them! They are also helping Ryan get our front yards ready to plant
some grass! I can't wait to have grass! A little piece of home, and a barrier for the massive amounts of dust and dirt that get tracked into ours houses!

Taiah, Asa and I have been plugging away at school. Asa is very interested in school this year- which I didn't think would be the case until he was much older. He is learning
the rest of his letters and numbers by sight, and sound. Taiah is doing her work most days without a huge fight ;) We are going to start our study on Uganda soon, and
she is very excited about that. She has also been learning Spanish- and she seems to be picking it up quickly, and teaching it to Asa.

If you didn't get a chance to see the video Nate put together, her is the link to it on YouTube...check it out! (and see if you can find me and Mem in it ;). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7P4UCY4opOk

Also, NEW photos up! http://picasaweb.google.com/steffensenfaminmexico/FunInMX?feat=directlink

Hasta a Lunes! ><> Shae

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Just a little tid bit

I wanted to add to my post a little, something the Lord has been putting on my heart.

We have 7 young adults here. They have left their "lives" at home, and come here for three months to study Missions. For most (if not ALL) of them, this means that their reserve is dwindeling. A couple of these students are here on sponserships from gracious donors. Others have worked to pay their way here. Either way, they are all only here for this semester. They have to go home to work in between semesters to hopefully make enough to pay for the next one. The whole program is 3 semesters long.
Also, we have a big Missions conference going on here in October. A huge oportunity for men and women to come from all over the globe to learn from Missionaries from all over the globe.

That being said-- If you have prayerfully considered sponsering a missionary-- now is the time to get started :) These men and women are already trying to gain the knowledge and experience to be sent out! They need support now too!
The tuition for MBS is $500 per month, which covers all living expenses. Plus they will serve on a Mission trip to apply what they have learned at the end of each semester, which will be in addition to tuition.

You can contact Roseburg Christian Fellowship at 541-672-7222, or by mail @
1376 Walnut, Roseburg, OR 97470
Or you can contact us at 541-767-8068, or by mail @
PMB# 617
2220 Otay Lakes Rd. #502
Chula Vista, CA
91915

Please mention whether you are wanting to sponsor a student of the MBS training @ Rancho Tres Cruces, or someone wanting to travel here on October 17th for the Y4K conference.
Thanks for keeping us in prayer!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Harvest Moon

The moon was already full again.
I remember laying in bed, just a few days after we came here, looking out the window at the full moon. It was HUGE, and shone so bright over the crosses, that I could see forever all around the valley. And I felt very alone.
I remember feeling like I was in a boat, with a raging sea outside. I had this uneasy anxiety about being in the country, alone, where there are coyotes, and strange bugs, and banditos, and dirty police. We are 30 minutes from a hospital, and don't even speak the language- if we were to have to go there. We are 3 hours from my home country, and a two day journey from my family- and everything I have ever known.
I lay there thinking about my children. How there are so many ways that they could be harmed.

I can honestly say that that is the only time I have had fear and doubt like that here. I asked God to comfort me. I plead for Him to give me peace. I asked Him to protect my family. And this is what He said:
"but the LORD, who brought you up from the land of Egypt with great power and an outstretched arm, Him you shall fear, Him you shall worship, and to Him you shall offer sacrifice." 2 Kings 17:36
God made me slep that night, and I woke up feeling at home here. It has now been two months since that day.
I can't really say that I feel "homesick" very often. I love it here! And it feels normal to me.
I can, however, say that I feel like I am missing out. Big Time.
I missed my baby brother becoming an adult.
I missed my baby sister's twentieth birthday.
I missed the county fair with my mom.
I missed camping with my family.
I miss RCF EVERY week.
I miss my coffee shop.
I feel like life is going on without us.
That is how I feel right now.

------------------------------------------------------
On to the happenings at the Base:
It has been over 100 degrees for 3 days now.
We have mild weather for a few weeks, then we make up for it :)
Rumor has it, that it will be very hot for a while. I love Mexico :)


Andy Taylor- pastor of a small church in Bridge, OR- came to teach the MBS for a week.
He arrived here on Monday night. And so did my Dad and Step-Mom. And so did Samson- our new Belgian Malinois Puppy.
All of that made for a fun week. From showing my parents our home here, and what we do from day to day- to trying to train our puppy to stay out of the house, and not to whine at night- to sitting on the beach and listening to our students practice defending their faith to eachother.
I think that when people come down to visit (especially people who have been on mission trips before), they get a different perspective of the mission field. It isn't all hustle and bustle like it is when you are part of a team, visiting for a couple weeks, with a full schedule of events and work projects. We live here. It is normal day to day life most of the time. We have weeks where we are crazy busy (mostly just when we have Mission Teams here :).... but most of the time, we are just plugging along. Praying for the work that God is doing in the hearts and minds of our students. Keeping the place running.
In fact- Mem and I were just talking about how it is weird to think that we are dubbed Missionaries. We just live here. We all have jobs similar to the ones we had back home. But if I stop to look at the long run-- we are Missionaries. We are furthering the Gospel! Our little ranch here will nurture and equip men and women who will in turn bring the Gospel to Nations. To people who have never heard the name of Jesus Christ! The information being learned here is vital in the furthering of the Gospel. We keep this base running, in order to keep the vision moving. Our students will go out (some to Southern Mexico, some to Bangledesh, and eventually Africa, Asia, Russia, Romania, India......) bringing the information that they have learned here- and equip Pastors all over the world to nurture their flocks.
So-- we are a part of the process. Just as YOU are a part of the process!! WE would not be here, if it weren't for you!

I Cor. 12:4-27
"There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.
There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord.
And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.
But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all:
for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit,
to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit,
to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.
But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.
For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ.
For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body— whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.
For in fact the body is not one member but many.
If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I am not of the body," is it therefore not of the body?
And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I am not of the body," is it therefore not of the body?
If the whole body were an eye, where would be the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where would be the smelling?
But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased.
And if they were all one member, where would the body be?
But now indeed there are many members, yet one body.
And the eye cannot say to the hand, "I have no need of you"; nor again the head to the feet, "I have no need of you."
No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary.
And those members of the body which we think to be less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty,
but our presentable parts have no need. But God composed the body, having given greater honor to that part which lacks it,
that there should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.
Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually."


See!! We are all a part of it!

Well I am sorry that you had to wait an extra week for my update :-)
Hopefully you all missed me ;)

It will be OCTOBER when you hear from me again! Wow! Where did time go?!

until then--
Bendiciones!

><> Shae
PS. I will have new photos up in a few!






Monday, September 13, 2010

What.A.Week.
From trying to teach 7 young adults to cook for themselves, and clean up the mess afterwards-
to saying goodbye to my husband and daughter as they left on a 5 day trip back home,
to trying to find a puppy that is healthy and affordable,
to ending off the week with an ocean baptism of three of our students.
What.A.Week!!!
God is so big. I have been overwhelmed with this thought this week.
All of the toiling and trodding I do all day-- when it is all about Him.
Nothing I do or say should be for any other reason.
I'm a big cess pool, when I stop and think about it!
80% of my thoughts and actions are fruitless rubbish.
My focus this week is to bridle my tongue, be slow to anger, and to praise Him in everything I do.
So. Ya. Ummmmmmm .... pray for me :-D

Ryan and Taiah got back around midnight on Saturday. It was so quiet here without them! (Well.... without Taiah ;)
I forget how helpful Taiah is, until I realize that I have a 4 year old at my ankle all day long when she isn't around to entertain him :)
They had a good visit with as much family as they could cram into two days on the ground. I'm sure some people would have liked to have seen more of them- but you how short 48 hours is.
They drove home our new car. It is a pretty cute little car. Especially since with the insurence claim, we will have actually not paid very much for it :) Ryan will try to order the parts himself and just have it painted afterwards.

So as we settle into this routine of having students, we sneak up on having more visitors:)
Ryan's Aunt and Uncle and cousins from the San Diego area are coming down this weekend (YAY!!!), and the following week, My Dad and Step-Mom are coming down (tentatively). Then we find ourselves in October already, when we will go up for a visit with some of Ryan's family
in CA, and then come home to prep for a VERY large group coming in the middle of October. So even though the days seem slow sometimes, the busyness comes in waves :) (and I love busyness!! :-D).

I am planning on starting school with Taiah and Asa tomorrow. I will let you know how that goes :) I guess I should probably write a schedule, ha ha!
I have some curriculum-- a little of this and that from A Beka and someother random stuff. Taiah is a very different learner. I can't just give her a book
and have her solve problems or write answers. She will cry the whole time and not retain a thing. She doesn't like to be bored. And what kid does?
So I have to work as hard as she does at coming up with new ways to teach her. She is well above her grade level at reading and math. But hates to write
and can't spell anything. She would prefer that we do art every day. All day. And on weekends. We use dry erase boards alot.... it's almost like "art" when
you get to solve your math problems in giant font :)

Well... I am off to make the kids clean up the patio and take naps (eventually they will learn to keep their friends from dumping buckets of toys all over and
leaving them...... after they have to pick-up after them a couple hundred times, i suppose). I think I need another pot of coffee too.....
* New pics up :0)
http://http//picasaweb.google.com/117744570327177560832/GoingsOn

Hasta el Lunes
><> Shae
1Ch 16:23-36 "Sing to the LORD, all the earth; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day.
Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples.
For the LORD is great and greatly to be praised; He is also to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the peoples are idols, But the LORD made the heavens. Honor and majesty are before Him; Strength and gladness are in His place.
Give to the LORD, O families of the peoples, Give to the LORD glory and strength.
Give to the LORD the glory due His name; Bring an offering, and come before Him. Oh, worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness!
Tremble before Him, all the earth. The world also is firmly established, It shall not be moved.
Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; And let them say among the nations, "The LORD reigns."
Let the sea roar, and all its fullness; Let the field rejoice, and all that is in it.
Then the trees of the woods shall rejoice before the LORD, For He is coming to judge the earth.
Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.
And say, "Save us, O God of our salvation; Gather us together, and deliver us from the Gentiles, To give thanks to Your holy name, To triumph in Your praise."
Blessed be the LORD God of Israel From everlasting to everlasting! And all the people said, "Amen!" and praised the LORD."

Monday, September 6, 2010

Tomorrow Ryan (and Taiah) will leave for Oregon. They haven't seen family in two months, so they should have a good time :) Ryan will bring home our newly purchased, and newly wrecked ;), car.... so that in December we can all go north for a visit. December seems like a long ways away to me right now-- but I remember how blessed we are to be called to a place so near our home, with the ability to visit home so easily and afford ably. My friend Summer was away from home- on another continent, for 3 years until this month when she was blessed with a trip to Oregon.... and furthermore- she only got to bring 15% of her children with her!
Anyhow, .... this past friday, our students arrived: three from Roseburg, 2 from Phoenix, and 1 from Portland. Plus Matt and Don, who were chauffeuring, and LeAnn, who came to visit with the Froslands. Somehow, they picked up a couple of kids biking from Roseburg to SF, and threw them in the van too. ;-) -- also, Luis, Lance and Maricela's oldest son, is staying to try out classes this week.
So we have a full house, and once again it is strange to have so many people bustling around.... but it also feels more like home when people are here (especially when they are actually from home :)
We have spent the weekend getting everyone oriented, and comfortable. Yesterday we had an American Style BBQ for our friends. Lance and Maricela came over, so did Noe and Estrella, and Alex and Louis (Lance and Maricela's kids) and Alex's girlfriend Laura was down from SD too. Austin befriended up a guy at Zarpasos Tacos after church, and he showed up too... which turned out to be totally awesome! His name is Irvin, and he is a tech geek, and a translator-- very handy! But most of all- an awesome brother- with a giant heart! We all played Vollyball, had chicken and steak and potato salad and Maricela's salsas, and topped it off with Helado de Tuna (cactus icecream) and birthday cake for Austin. It was by far the most amazing fellowship of our time here, and we were all so very blessed! I went to bed feeling like this Ranch had been thoroughly used for the purpose that God has given it to us for-- Koinonia!! compaƱerismo!! Fellowship!!!
The MBS training school started today also. I haven't been updated on how that went yet- but they are breaking into Spiritual Disciplines, so I'm sure everyone is being fed hearty meat today! It is almost surreal that the school has begun already, and we are going to be seeing Gods Reaping very soon. In October, we have a lot planned here, and I can already feel God spiritually preparing this place.
I know this is a little bit of a short update-- but I have to go for my Spanish lesson now :-D

so Hasta Luego!

><> Shae

Monday, August 30, 2010

Believe it or not :-)

OK.... I know I'm going to have to have photographic proof for you all to believe me, but I will get to that at a later date.

So we have the students coming down this week, and Matt is driving them. Which means it is the perfect opportunity for Ryan to hitch a ride back up to Oregon to buy us a car. See, we sold all but one of our cars before we left (well, we sold some of them, and left the rest for Mason to deal with :-D-- thanks man!), but anyhow- we have been looking online for and economical car- like a Corolla- for us to drive back to Oregon in. The Lord sure blessed us when He called us to serve in another country- and then it happened to be the one that is only a day's drive away!!
Just a couple of days ago, Ryan found the car on Craig's List that we felt like we should buy. It was a very good deal, and the listing had been updated, and the price lowered because the owner had been hit by a truck in the car, and it now had a dent in the hood. No big deal, right?! It will be residing in Mexico! It will fit right in with a little dent on the hood. So we offered him a little lower than that, and he said he would take it. So as of yesterday around 3:00 in the afternoon, we had a deal with the guy (who is in Eugene btw) to buy a car that bluebooks for twice what he was going to sell it to us for, and my dad was going to be kind enough to drive to Eugene- last night at like 5:00- to give him the money, and drive the car back to Roseburg. Ugh.... try buying a car from a thousand miles away sometime!! DO NOT reccommend it!!
SO...... my dad gets to Eugene, test drives the car, and calls me to tell me that he thinks it is a good deal, and that he will go ahead and buy it. He drives the car back to just around the corner from where the owner was, just to call me again and ask me another question, and....... WHAMM.... a guy backs his van right into the car.
What? You say..... YOU HEARD ME!!! He got hit.... in a car he had yet to pay for!!
And I was on the phone with him when it happened! (might I add here, that he was NOT driving and talking on the phone!!! He had pulled over....)
So, to sum this up-- We bought the car anyways. It had been hit right in the same spot as the original dent, and is not in super bad condition. Ryan says he can fix it-- although he hasn't actually seen it yet :-D
To make things even more complicated, the owner of the car did not have insurence, and the guy who was driving the van did not have insurence, and my dad's insurence is probably not going to cover it because it was not his car......... But there is a slight possibility that our insurence might cover it.....
Anyhow. We now own a dented car. That gets almost 40 miles to the gallon, and has fewer miles than any car we have ever owned :) Dent or no dent- it is a blessing. And we will see what happens with the damage next week when Ryan gets to Oregon to survey the situation.
God works in mysterious ways! His ways are SO far above my own! I don't even begin to assume that I really know Him. Isn't that a hard one to imagine?! He has left us with a manual written by His hand, and a world created by His voice, so that we can get just the slightest idea of just how majestic He really is- and we don't know the half of it!! What an amazing experience heaven will be!

As for the goings-on here at the base: We are getting some things painted. This week I painted Asa's bedroom. He was too scared to sleep in his room alone, so we moved him into Taiah's room-- but she is an 8 year old girl, and we are hoping to change his mind about his room by letting him pick the colors for it. We will see how that worked tonight :) - He chose lime green, and two shades of blue by the way ;) photos up.

Memorie has been painting some in her house too- but I will let her tell you about her schemes over at www.Frosland-familia.blogspot.com (now you have to update Mem ;-P )

I believe that Ryan and Corinne and Kayla are working on the Casa de Juan today-- getting it primed and painted for the female students who will be staying there. We have some more rearranging to do too..... i promise i will get photos when it is all situated!

One more thing before I close-- Happy Birthday this past Wednesday to my baby girl!! She is now eight years old, and will be starting THIRD GRADE in a few weeks!! I love you Taiah Shalom!!
________________________________________________________________
So when I get up in the morning, I read a section from wherever I am studying (Ecclesiasties right now), then I read the Proverb of the Date. A concept that I thought was common-- but may actually not be :) ..... see, there are 31 Proverbs. Perfect!!! One for every day of the month, and sometimes a couple extra ;)
So this morning I read chapter 30. Wow. I am always amazed by this chapter! It is SO amazingly deep! Agur writes the chapter. He is discribed as "Agur the Wise, son of Jakeh". And, Boy was he! He gives us a list of which things in life, and which behaviors in life, are important to him. He speaks about lying, and decieving. He speaks about obedience to parents, and about a generation that curses it's father, and is pure in it's own eyes, and has lofty eyes, and who devour the poor and needy. (Sound like a familiar generation to you??)
He starts the chapter off by procaliming that he is "more stupid than any man" and that he does not "have knowledge of the Holy One.". That verse stood out to me! Who am I to think that I have acheived anything, or have obtained any wisdom, or knowledge of God? He is FAR above me! And I would not even begin to profess to "have Him figured out". There is SO much more to God that we will only know when we are standing with Him in our proper home, in our proper body.
He goes on to say "Every word of God is pure, He is a sheild to those who put their trust in Him." ..... Thank you God, for being MY shield! He is my fortress- I will never be shaken!!
And in the following verses, he asks God to give him neither poverty nor riches- because he doesn't want to be full and deny God, or to be left poor and steal, or profane His name. But he asks for God to "feed me with the food allotted to me". AMEN! God please bless me in exactly the ways which you have prepared for me!! Let me not ask for more- or refuse what you try to give me!!
He finishes off the chapter by saying "If you have been foolish in exalting yourself, or if you have devised evil, put your hand on your mouth."
I am positive that God granted my mother with this wisdom decades ago! :)
Come on--- all you mom's have said it!
If you don't have anything loving to say- DON'T SAY ANYTHING AT ALL!!!
Right?

Until Monday~
><> Shae

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Uh OH!!! It's TUESDAY!!!
Told you not to hold your breath ;)

The Frosland's got here Saturday afternoon! YAY!!! I have never seen 4 kids so happy to see eachother.ever.they.were.stoked.
Sunday We all went in to church at Horizonte, then went out to La Bufadora. (Nate thought he needed churros;)

Yesterday we tried to help Mem get her livingroom bailed out and the furniture put in a somewhat welcoming formation :-) , then Lance and Maricela (and Gustapo) came over yesterday to welcome Nate and Memorie. We also took the tour of the orchards and checked the compost and the grapes- which- btw, are delicious! (the grapes..... not the compost....)

I guess I totally forgot that it was monday yesterday, because I spent most of the day just visiting with Mem, and letting the kids tear up their rooms.

We have had a heat wave the past two weeks! It had been nice and cool for a month, and then- bam!- it was 103!!! We don't have a pool for the kids... so I drug out the inflatable raft, and filled it with water... VIOLA! A kiddie pool :-D

The most exciting news of the week though.... : Ryan and Nate are in town right now, helping Noe and Blanca move some things into their new house (which they have been waiting for for two years!!).... and they are coming back with....... drum roll please...... A STOVE!!!! YAY!!!
Two of them actually... one for me, and one for Mem :-D
I have been cooking in an electric skillet for 6 weeks! So I am very excited for the luxury of a stove and an oven! (Thank You to a donation made to the church for us to buy the stove!!).

Taiah's birthday is tomorrow. My baby girl is eight years old. I distinctly remember telling her on her first birthday that she was not allowed to grow anymore. She deliberately disobeyed me.


She is completely healthy, and was back to her old self in 10 days! Thank you for the prayers!!!.........
She is beautiful, and loving, and helpful.... she is wise and intelligent beyond her years.... she loves her brother, and all little kids. She loves to craft, and read, and learn. She hates to write, and she hates peas. She loves animals, and thinks that this place should be a farm-- there is way too much property to not have at least one cow, horse, duck, goose, and multiple chickens and pigs.... along with the obvious: a DOG and a cat! She could tell you an hour long story about any event that has ever happened to her. She is our talker. :)
I love you Taiah Shalom, and I hope your day is awesome-- even if your friends are "a million miles away". :-)

We are preparing to receive students in a week and a half or so. It will be so strange to all of the sudden have so many people running around! We had several quiet weeks with just the girls, until Saturday..... now the base is bustling with the yells and laughs of little people. Add to that 5 young adults, and we have ourselves a little community :) ... which-- if you know me-- is right up my alley!!! I have been having social interaction withdrawals!
I got to listen in on the RCF Staff meeting this morning.... well kind of.... there was mostly just static (we'll have to work on the microphone situation), but it felt good to just be there ;) I got to hear Kelly laugh, and Phil joke, and i got to tell everyone a little about what we've been up to.

I will be starting school soon too-- as soon as i make a trip to the States to pick up the mail. My curriculum is partially purchased... we'll work on the rest later :) I have been getting some pressure to send the kids to school here in San Antonio! Yikes! Although I would LOVE for my kids to be fluent in Spanish.... I can't do that. I don't put my kids in school in the States! So pray that I would be able to find a group of homeschooling moms who support my decision to be my children's' teacher. Some of you know how It goes :)

Pray with us for the preparations for starting school. Pray that we would ALL be walking in God's will. Pray next week for Poncho-- who will likely be hanging from a rope down our well!
Pray with us that all of our hearts would be soft and sensitive to each other while we minister together.
(new photos!)



http://picasaweb.google.com/117744570327177560832/GoingsOn?feat=directlink





Monday, August 16, 2010


First- headline news: Welcome to the world Eli William! Born August 10th, weighing in at just over 6lbs! This tiny little guy makes 5 Nephews for us (plus we have 4 Nieces :) We can't wait to squeeze you little man!
Congratulations to Ryan's sister Shawnee (and Max :).

As promised~ It's Monday, and I'm on the ball ;) (don't get too used to it- it's very unnatural for me).

This past Monday, Taiah came down with something. I assumed it was some sort of virus. She had a very high fever for two days, then, although her fever broke, she continued to be very sleepy monday-thursday. Thursday she began to feel better physically, but was still lethargic, and had an off-and-on mild fever. Sunday she really freaked me out by waking up with a stiff neck. She complained that she couldn't turn her head, and she couldn't touch her chin to her chest. She was, however, not running a fever at this point. I referenced, and cross referenced her symptoms. The only thing that came up was meningitis. The delima was whether it was viral, or bacterial (which can quickly become very dangerous). ~If you ever need to know anything at all about meningitis, I can tell you all you need to know :-) .... I am now aware of everything that is, or has ever been posted on the internet, or in the 2003 edition of the American Medical Journal concerning both viral and bacterial meningitis.
At this point, she is still a little more tired than usual, but her range of motion is improving, and her fever has been absent or very mild (99F). I believe that she did contract a virus that led to meningitis. They will not prescribe any antibiotics for it (since they are ineffective against a virus), so I am just waiting it out. She has been taking an anti-inflammatory for her neck pain, and getting plenty of rest and water. She says she feels fine. :) But is still not her peppy self. Please pray that she would be completely healed- it is simply TOO quiet around here with her ill :)

Thursday we made a trip to the States. We needed to get our post office box and had some mail to pick up in San Diego. After an hour long drive, and a two hour long wait at the border- followed by a 35 minute drive into Chula Vista, we made it to the PA where we got our mail box (45 minutes after we began the application process, i might add :-). Even though it is not very far from the Ranch to the border, it is an ALL DAY EVENT! We got back around 6:00pm.

Other than that- every day has just been filled with chores. Cleaning here, and mopping there. Washing and folding and organizing. Watering and trimming and sweeping and vacuuming. The Cocina is looking great! We moved a couch out of the House of Juan into it, and put up some of the furniture that was donated. The dorms will have one dresser each (although we need two more) and the House of Juan has a dresser and a nightstand with a lamp and a table. I will take some pictures to show you once everything is a little more complete. We still need to get paint to paint several more rooms. We also moved the bunks in the dorms in such a way that we can now sleep 6 people in each room! Comfortably even! :)

God has been showing me how to listen for Him even when everything seems very quiet. Not much has been going on-- just the everyday. But God has met with me each day to show me what He is doing here to prepare for the work. The fellowship with our friends here has been a huge blessing to us. We feel so joyous that the ministries in this valley are becoming unified, and are anxious to see how we will all work together for the furthering of His Word.
Lance and Maricela have been by several times, and Noe and Blanca came by Saturday. We have also had visits from neighbors, and were blessed this morning by a surprise visit from Mark Garrett (from Days Creek).

Now, I am anxiously awaiting the arrival (this Sunday) of our neighbors :)
Nate and Memorie and their girls will be leaving Roseburg this Friday-- that's right--in 4 SHORT days!! And hope to be here on Sunday! YAY! Asa will be so excited to see Elsa!
Pray for their preparations, and their trip. Pray that their initiation will be smooth, and the girls will feel safe and comfortable here. This process is all too fresh in my mind- and I know that for every miraculous thing that God does to prepare the way for us- there is a bump in the road to keep us trusting and relying on Him! James tried to warn us of this ;-)

That's my wrap-up for this week..... talk to you in seven days :-D


"if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land." 2 Cr. 7:14

Monday, August 9, 2010

Blogger Bum??

Boy! I can't seem to find time to post to this blog.... even though things have been very slow around here since the team went home a weeks ago! I need to make some kind of schedule for my posts...... so how about this: I will make an effort to post a new post every monday. Sound good? ok. then it's a deal. You check in every tuesday, and leave me comments ;), and i will do my best to think of some exciting things to post every Monday.

So here is the wrap up of the past two weeks:

We had the RCF youth team here from July 26th, to August 3rd. That group included 16 of our favorite 15-20-somethings and 4 chaperons. They were SUCH a blessing to have around!! Ryan and I had fellowship with Matt, Ted, Kevin, and Kristy, while the kids were thoroughly entertained by all of their teenagers! The kids did a lot of traveling to check out the different ministries in the valley (Casa Hogar, Carmen Serdan, and The Colonia Mixteca), plus they had several projects here that they helped us out with. They did A LOT of landscaping- which was WAY overdue, and helped us to start a compost bin, and began the grooming of the trail up to the crosses.

I would be happy to admit that it was very tiring and very time consuming to provide meals for 16 hungry youth, 6 adults, and two kids. You would not believe how much food that entails! But it was SOOOOOO much fun for me! I loved every minute of it, and had help from all of the youth. (I didn't even have to wash dishes ;).

The group left early Tuesday morning (Aug.3rd), and left behind Kayla Carroll, and Corinne Borelli. Kayla will be here with us for two months, helping me to get things done before the students get here in late August. She is also hoping to spend some time at Carmen Serdan, where she feels God is calling her to serve in January after she is done with the last bit of her schooling. My kids are loving every moment of that :-) They love their Kayla. Corinne will be here for a month, and go home sometime around the time when students start to get here. She is helping out with the day-to-day too..... so far we have painted La Cocina! Yay! Which was very much needed. We hope for the kitchen/dinning hall to be the fellowship hall for the students. It is getting there, but still needs some things. We had some very generous donations from RCF- we received a few pieces of furniture that we are thinking about putting in there. I also have a couple of couches that I might put in there..... I will update photos when we get it all put together :)

While the group was here, we started a brick composting bin. Kayla and I finished that last week. The first compartment is now happily rotting, and we are moving on to the second bin, and hoping that the first batch will be ready in about 8 weeks so we can harrow the soil this fall, and plant this spring!

The front corner of the property has been an overgrown mess for a long time, and it had been on Matt's heart to make it a more inviting scene. So the kids got down on their hands and knees and were up to their elbows in weeds and dirt for a good 8 hours. It looks AWESOME!! We will get some grass and ground cover planted , and maybe a bench placed there (since the locals like to use the shade as a resting spot :). They also raked out the orchard, which had all the leaves from last fall still laying around. It looks much better now, and keeps the dining patio much nicer :) ...... now Ryan is working on digging watering rings into the soil around all of the trees. We are fortunate enough to already have met a local man from La Colonia who knows ALL about trees and plants. YAY!! So as soon as Poncho finishes working for our neighbor, we will have him come and show us what needs to be done to keep the trees healthy, and most importantly (in my humble opinion ;) graft some branches into our Avocado trees to make them bear fruit!!!!

Before we left Roseburg, we had quite a few people ask what we needed for the Ranch. So I posted a blog post here to let you all know what it was that we would be needing, and Kelly also put a list in the bulletin. Well, you guys came through BIG time! (see photo below). Nate came with the group (in his Jeep, and also Don Pierce went ahead of the group with a trailer) to get some of his stuff moved down here in preparation for their family joining us as staff here. The trailer was unpacked as soon as the youth were here to help out, and not only were we excited to see some of our things that we had to leave behind (like the kids' bikes and toys!), but I was overwhelmed with the amount of donations that were packed in there for the ranch!! There were sheet sets, pillows, dressers and night stands, lamps, school supplies, curtains and fabric, a case and a half of light bulbs!, and dishes and silverware for la cocina. You guys ROCK!!

After the group left, it became VERY quiet here :) ...... Our family had become accustom to this after having been here for two weeks alone prior to the arrival of the group-- but I think Kayla and Corinne might have been shocked by the emptiness of the Mexican Outback when no one is around :) We have coyotes at night in our yard, and birds chirping all day, but other than that- there is not much noise at all..... and it's not like you can just jaunt into town and hang out at the church like we were all used to in Roseburg. After a few days of rest, we made a trip into town for groceries. That was a nice break from the norm. Then we went to church yesterday and took a trip out to La Bufadora (a local tourist site) afterwards for some AMAZING fish tacos, and souvenir shopping. We will be heading into the states to get a post office box and pick up some mail at a family member's house sometime in the next few days. It is a long drive, but kind of nice to break up the monotony.

Our first student will be arriving next week. Then we expect the Frosland family about a week after that, and sometime at the end of the month, the rest of the students will be arriving. We also have tentative arrangements for a small group from the Fellowship to come for a short visit (and to deliver our tractor!!) in the beginning of September. And at some point ( :-D ) my parents and my sibs and nephew will be making their way down for a visit (right guys??)

So that is the past, the present, and the future as far as I can see :)
We have had a blast this past month. It is definitely feeling like home here. We are learning the ropes, and I have been picking up as much Spanish as I can retain! :) (hopefully the kids will pick it up and teach me though, because this old brain doesn't work like it used to! :)

Pray that God would have his hand over everything we do! The school will be starting in about 4 weeks- and this is a Genesis of sorts...... we don't have all the details ironed out :) So we might be making up some stuff as we go. But we know that God has set before us exactly what He has been planning for all of eternity- and He will cause it to work out exactly how it should. We are just excited to see it happen. We can already see how awesome it is going to be! We have been able to spend time with our dear friends Lance and Maricella Ward, who live just up the valley in Guadalupe, as well as Noe and Blanca, who live in Ensenada. They are just as excited as we are to see what God is going to do on this Ranch!

Pray for our continued health and safety. We have not had any health issues- other than a mysterious rash that Taiah broke out with on and around her eye just before the team got here two weeks ago. It has healed and looks great. We have encountered all sorts of interesting creatures- to say the least. As we speak (or as I type :-D) Ryan is up the hill trying to put an end to the rattlesnake that Corinne had a close encounter with a few days ago. No one has ever seen a rattlesnake on the property, in all the years that RCF has had it-- but there is definitely one up there now..... and Ryan is determined to see it die. ..... PS.... he HATES snakes!!
So pray that all of the scorpions and tarantulas and snakes would find happy homes far far away from our houses :) (I'm sure Memorie would appreciate these prayers too!)

Pray for our obedience to The Lord in all that we do! We are willing to move as He would have us, and pray that He would make clear to us the actions we should take daily.

This is the Monday August 9th edition of this blog--- tune in next week ;)
Here is the link for the photos : http://picasaweb.google.com/117744570327177560832/GoingsOn?feat=directlink

"For thou art my rock and my fortress; therefore, for thy name's sake, lead me, and guide me"
Psalm 31:3

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Finally Feeling a Little Like Home




Well, we made it!
After years of preparation of the heart, months of preparation of the family, and weeks of preparation of the details.... We are actually here. In Mexico. In another country, 1000 miles away from our family, and 15 miles away from civilization,
This week has been crazy (needless to say!).
We left Roseburg at 7:30am on Monday July 12th- Landcruiser packed full- and headed South. We drover for 12 hours and landed for the night just south of Fresno in a town called Kingsburg. It was SOOOOO hot through California!! Ryan was wanting to get the best gas mileage we could, so the windows were down and the AC was off :-/
We went swimming in the pool at our hotel, grabbed dinner, and slept! Ahhh! :)
We hit the road again at about 10:00am on Tuesday. We drove to Spring Valley California, just outside of San Diego and had an awesome visit and delicious dinner with Ryan's Uncle and Aunt and Cousins whom we haven't seen in like 5 years. (Thanks Prince Fam for opening your home to us!!). We stayed the night there, and hit the road again Wednesday morning around 9:30.
We got to the Tecate International Border Crossing around 11:00, and rolled right through. Got the green light :) Didn't even have to stop!! Praise God!! I mean, we had ALOT of stuff packed on ol' Red, and they could have stopped us and gone through it all, or decided to tax us for it, but- nada! Amazing.
The instant you cross the gate from Tecate, CA, into Tecate BC, MX-- it is a different world. It is indescribable..... you will just have to come see for yourself ;-D
The road from Tecate to San Antonio De Las Minas (the small town where the Ranch is) is 61 miles, and takes 2 hours :) ...... They are doing a huge road improvement project right now, so it is even worse than it ever was before.... sections of the old road have been taken out to be recycled and used in the new road :), and so there are portions of VERY rough dirt road. However, it will be VERY nice when it is finished.... probably sometime in the year 2045 ;)
We arrived home at about 1:30 pm on Wednesday, July 14th.

It was just surreal. It felt very different from all of the times that I have been here before. The kids were so tired of the car (and we might have been too ;), and it was very very hot, and we were dirty, and the work had begun :)
We unpacked the truck, and fell asleep!
And the rest is history! We have been unpacking our things, and trying to make it home.... while also trying to get the ranch prepared to receive a team next week.

We went 3 days with no food other than what we brought-- which was minimal (beans, rice, and some canned stuff) before we got a chance to run into Ensenada (which- thanks to the last "road improvement project", is now only 15 or 20 mins away) and get some groceries and supplies. Then we just continued to get set up. We didn't know that it was Sunday until some time Sunday afternoon :), so we missed church. So we hiked up the mountain to The Crosses. It is an amazing view from up there.... you can see the whole valley! I took some pics, and I will post a couple of slides on the page if I can :-/..........so for now, most of our belongings have a place and all of the rooms and the Cocina (kitchen) are ready for the RCF team!
Yesterday we went back to the States (which took ALL day-- a 3-4 hour drive) to load up at Costco. We got plenty of food for our family, and TONS of food for the team :)
Now I feel very prepared to begin our job.
There is so much to tell, and I just can't think of everything to say!
Hopefully that has brought everyone up to date.

Keep checking in-- now that we have a steady internet connection, and most of our things are set up and caught up, I will be able to post more often.

"He raises the poor from the dust and lift the beggar out of the ash heap, to set them among princes and make them inherit the throne of glory,' for the pillars of the Earth are the Lord's, and He has set the world upon them.'" I Sam. 2:8




Thursday, June 24, 2010

T-Minus 18 days.....


I'm not freaking out, I'm not freaking out, I'm not freaking out......... OK..... maybe just a little.....


I feel a little overwhelmed this week! The kiddos are doing VBS, which starts at 8:30....... A M !!

OK, my kids get up at NINE-- so this is a stretch for us :)

We live 30 mins out, so we have to be up at 7:15 to get to town on time.


Then the kids are so tired all day, I feel like I'm not staying on top of my to-do list. Whew!.....

God has proven himself to us so many times, I don't know how I can once again find myself worrying about trivial things! How faithless we sometimes are.


So..... now that I've said that :) Here's the real update ;)


We have gotten all of our house stuff (our furniture and whatnot which has been in storage for 9 months) packed into a trailer, and hopefully Ryan and Nate are taking it down this next week. That will be a huge relief, just to know that our stuff is there, and when we have the kids with us, our crossing should go easier without a trailer. I have also been getting together all of the paperwork and legistic stuff-- like phone info, car ins., and PO Box stuff figured out this week.


Praise God we have sold 1 of our 3 vehicles, and possibly our motorhome!!! Keep praying that we would sell the others :) (We still need to sell the Corolla, and a work van).


I am busy training my Barista replacement (Dorie) this week too. She has been doing all of the work, and I have just been trying to answer all of her questions, and tell her as much as I can. She is going to do great! She is SO much more organized than I am :-D


OK..... so that is where we are right now-- if anyone has any questions, leave me a comment! I want to keep everyone informed. Also, if you are reading this and haven't emailed me to be added to the email newsletter list-- email me at steffensenfaminmexico@gmail.com. Just say "add me" and I will :)


Until next time-- " Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work." 2 Thess. 2:16-17

Sunday, June 13, 2010

FAQs

* "What will you be doing there?"

~ Ryan will be working as the grounds keeper, maintenance man, worship leader, and outreach coordinator. I Will be working as the Hostess/ Hospitality person :) I will be making the ranch a place where everyone feels welcome and at home. We want Tres Cruces to be a wellspring of life. We want it to be an oasis. The property is 11 acres, so Ryan will have an endless list of To-Dos :).


* "Where will you live?"

~ The first thing I plan on doing when we get to the base is photo-documenting all of the buildings and the layout of the base. Over the course of several years, many people have visited the base and helped to build a triplex. Two of the sides are 3 bedroom, 1 bath apartments. They have a very open layout and are very cute and homey. The top is a studio apartment. We will be living in one half of the bottom.

PS- there are dorm rooms, and a 2 room guest house for all of you to stay in when you come to visit :)


* "What do you need?"

~ Here are some needs for the base:
- Twin sheet sets (x44) - These are because I would like to have a set of sheets, and a spare set for each of the bunks in the dorms and the guest house so that when you come to visit, and when the students are living there, we will have sheets for all of the beds.
- Also I would like to have a pillow and pillow case for each of the 22 beds.
(These sheets and pillow cases can be used, but still in good condition. They do not have to match or coordinate-- so keep your eyes open at the second hand stores :).)
- Spoons and forks. These seem to find their way into the luggage of teams, or into the trash-- so they seem to disappear :)
- The guest house (Casa de Juan) is a two-story building with one large room downstairs, and one large room upstairs. I would love to have some small furniture in these two rooms to make them feel more homey. They need a couple small end tables, a small table lamp in each room, and a large mirror in each room.
- The Chapel has big beautiful windows that look right out at the crosses on the hill. The sun comes up bright and travels right along that side of the Chapel. Some sheer curtains would be wonderful. I can make them -- I would need about 28 yards of sheer fabric (white or tan), or I would need 12 panels at least 72" long, and 4 panels at least 48" long.
- The dorm rooms for the students have bunks, and that is all. It would be great to have a small dresser in each one for them to keep their things in. There are 4 dorm rooms and 2 guest rooms.
- There are many landscaping projects that need done. The property has a lot of regular up-keep. So needless to say- we will need lots of shovels, rakes, hoes, brooms, and a dust mop. There are these type of things there now, but the shovels get old fast with so much use.


*Needs for the Steffensen Family :

- We do not have many material needs. We have furniture and dishes and everything to make a home. We will, however, need to sell some things before we leave.
~ We have a 1979 Toyota Corolla Wagon,
A 1981 Toyota 2wd Pick-up
A 1986 Ford Econoline Panel Van
And we will be selling our "Home" :) A 1983 34' Pace Arrow
Class "A" Motor home.
~ If you have any questions, email me.

I hope this is helpful for you :) I want to keep everyone informed and involved..... so keep checking in.


"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven." Matthew 5:16

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Bienvenidos!


Welcome to our blog! I will try (notice I say try ;) my best to get this up and running before we leave! (July 12th).


One question I have heard a lot: "what do you need?" - So I will be working on a list of needs, not only for our family, but for Tres Cruces itself.


I will also be trying to keep everyone updated as to our preparations, and what God is doing in our family, and on the Ranch as we get ready to leave.


I can't explain how excited I am to see what God is going to do in the near future. I am SO happy that our RCF family is getting excited about Tres Cruces! It is your base, and we want you all to be involved in it! We are also SO excited about the MBS (Master's Bible School) that is coming together.


I know this is breif, but I promise I will update again soon!-- For now: please be praying for our family (us and the family that we will be moving away from), and for the people in the Tres Cruces area that I believe God is preparing for big things!